Thursday, September 10, 2015


This is a photo of my Grandma Louise & Grandpa Harl Dorsey on the left, and my Great Aunt Grace & Great Uncle Albert Foster on the right. (Louise & Grace were sisters.) It was taken near the side of my grandparents' house in Greenfield, Iowa. I still love that small town, and visit it often, where I spent magical vacations as a little girl during the 1950s and early '60s.

Greenfield, Iowa - 1950s

It's the only photo I could quickly locate, but hopefully I'll come across a few more later. I'm so terribly sad and have actually shed some tears, because I learned this past Tuesday, Sept 8th, that it BURNED DOWN. (No cause known at this time.) It had been bought, and sold, and rented over the years, and was in pretty bad shape, but I'd always dreamed of having enough money someday to buy it and renovate it back to the beauty and charm it displayed all those years ago.

I wrote about these four lovely ancestors in several chapters of my memoir, "From Pigtails to Chin Hairs," and how much they meant to me. The following is the last paragraph in the chapter, "A Timeless Journey."

       The furniture, pictures on the walls, and old-fashioned knick-knacks were always the same: crocheted doilies here and there, roller shades on the windows, white sheets on the beds that smelled like sunshine, and Grandma’s quilt with the little, yellow sunbonnets on it. This was a place where time stood still—no matter how long between visits—and always surrounded me with feelings of love, comfort, and home.

The next time I visit Greenfield, I think it will be difficult to not drive along SW 2nd Street, the way I've always done before, looking for that familiar home, but I'm also sure it would be very depressing to see an empty lot. Only time will tell.


  1. Yes, it will be difficult to drive past and see it gone, but your memories are forever with you.

  2. So sorry this horrible thing has happened to the place you loved so much. You described it beautifully in your book. Even though the house itself is gone, you have brought it to life in your readers' minds.

    I used to think I might be able to buy my grandparents' old house too. Maybe it is a popular idea, to return to a place you were happy. I haven't totally given up on that, but what seems more important now is to live out the things I learned from my family. And in fact, I am sitting here typing this at an old oak table, which was my grandparents' originally. So in their own way, they are still with me, just as your family will always be with you.

  3. I love looking back at days gone by. These photos are wonderful.

  4. Hi Becky! I am so sorry about the loss of your grandparents home. I stopped by and saw my Grandma and Grandpa J.'s old home in Junction City last month and though is was worse for the wear, I was happy to see it.

    Love ya,

    Kathy M.

  5. Becky, I'm so sorry to hear of the loss of this home. You've captured it so well in your memoir.

  6. I'm so sorry about this Becky. I know what it's like to have a structure like this, be destroyed. It hurts in a special way.

  7. Thank you, everyone! I really appreciate your kind words.

  8. Becky I can totally understand your tears and your heartbreak... As we get older sometimes much of what is dear to us is carried only in our hearts! True! I too have memories of my grandmother's home. Even though I wish I could even remember more, so much is so vivid. My senses remember the smell of her crisp sheets that had hung on the clothesline to dry (then she starched and ironed them!), the doilies, the crocheted things, afgans, trinkets, etc... We have some of the same good memories! :)

    1. Thank you, Kathi! Your lovely comment today helped me feel better about it.

  9. What beautiful ladies in their very sorry to hear that the house is gone now.


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