Posts Tagged ‘riverview and colonial place’

Where’s Rosie?

April 8th, 2016 Sears Homes 10 comments

That might be the question on my friends’ lips, as I’ve well nigh disappeared from polite society for the last several weeks. I didn’t realize how long I’d been “under the radar” until last night, when I glanced at an entry in my personal journal and saw that I went silent the second week of January.

That was three months ago.

After years of researching and writing about  Penniman, I realized that this book would never be completed unless I made it my raison d’être and singularly devoted myself to that task. For the last 90 days, I’ve spent 10-12 hours a day, seven days a week, finishing up this manuscript with a few days off from time to time. There were days that I worked for 16 hours straight. Not a fun time.

It’s been intense, and now the first draft is done. From here, it gets much easier.

We’ve been researching this topic since 2010, but it turned the corner and became a “manuscript” about three years ago. For more than 18 months, an entire room of my beautiful old house has been in a state of great disarray and extreme messiness. Wednesday night, I stayed up until 2:00 in the morning (that’d be Thursday morning) pulling notes down from the walls and tidying up. My entire collection of research now sits in five large plastic bins, ready to be stowed.

Before I dismantled The War Room™ I snapped a few photos.

I seriously thought about titling this blog, “So you want to be a writer?” but decided against it. When my children were young, my daily prayer for them was, “May these three sweet girls realize their full potential in this life.” I think some of those prayers rebounded into my own life, because researching and writing this book has required 100% of all my emotional, mental, physical, spiritual and intellectual abilities.

But I must add, now that it’s done, I’m a very happy girl. My feelings of joy and satisfaction and accomplishment are unmatched in my life experience, and those are some very good feelings. Enjoy the photos, and you can expect to hear more about “the book” very soon.


If there was a single word that could be used to describe this mess, it might be post-it notes.

If there was a single phrase that could be used to describe this research effort, it might be "post-it notes." There were many of these involved and in many places.


There were a few on the fireplace mantel.

There were a few notes on the fireplace mantel. This was late in the process. The notes on the left were the "completed" tasks. The ones on the right were the "need to be done." That's my dear sweet Mama are on the far right, smiling at me as I toil away. She passed 14 years ago.


These were the books that I used most often.

These were the books that I used most often, a collection of newspaper articles from the "Virginia Gazette" and the "Daily Press." There are a few post-it notes here, too.


Early on, Teddy figured out that post-it notes were the best way to get my attention.

Early on, Teddy figured out that post-it notes were the best way to get my attention.



The 1950s lamp was not spared the indignity of note placement.


Not counting the material adorning the walls, the notebooks were an impressive lot.

Not counting the material adorning the walls, the notebooks were an impressive lot. There were seven additional notebooks that didn't make it into the pile. The rolled documents are maps.


There were a few post-it notes within the pages, too.

There were a few post-it notes within the pages, too.


When Wayne came home, I insisted he pose here too.

When Wayne came home, I insisted he pose here too. He was instructed to "look professorial and erudite." I think he nailed it.


Perhaps I should have asked him to look patient. He never said a word when I started covering the walls with 100-year-old newspaper stories - you know - the walls hed just painted the year before...

Perhaps I should have asked him to "look patient." He never said a word when I started covering the walls with 100-year-old newspaper stories - you know - the walls he'd just painted the year before...


Ever the varnished door was not spared.

Even the varnished door was not spared.



And nothing accents a 1950s Mid-Century Modern house like cheap plastic banquet tables.


All in the name of history!

All in the name of history!


And it all started with those little bungalows in Riverview...

And it all started with those pretty little bungalows in Riverview, moved to Norfolk from Penniman...(Photo is courtesy Hagley Museum and Library, Wilmington, Delaware).


To learn more about Penniman’s little houses, click here.

To contact Rose, please leave a comment below.


Greatest Home Bargain in Norfolk (Colonial Place): Only $11,000!! (In 1924)

March 14th, 2012 Sears Homes No comments

David Spriggs and I have spent countless hours reading old newspapers. We’re reading the Lake Mills Leader (Wisconsin) looking for more information on Addie Hoyt, and we’re also reading the Virginian Pilot, hoping to find a photo of the houses that were shipped here from Penniman Virginia.

In the process of reading these old papers, David happened upon an old photo of a house for sale in Colonial Place (Norfolk). We’re sharing it here, just because it’s a neat old photo, showcasing one of the finer homes in Colonial Place.

To learn more about Riverview and Penniman, click here.

To read more about the Sears Homes in Colonial Place, click here.


Colonial Place

David figured out that this house is at 711 Pennsylvania Avenue in Colonial Place (1924).


Porch people not included.

Porch people do not convey (but it would be fun to know who they are).


Close-up of the homes description.

Close-up of the home's description. Sounds pretty swanky!

Text reads,

All tapestry brick home located on Pennsylvania Avenue, concrete driveway, and double garage to match. Built on lot 50 x 110 feet, next to 150 by 150 Gosnold Avenue site, and surrounded by beautiful trees and shrubbery. As you enter this beautiful tapestry brick home you enter a large reception hall; to the right is a large living room with a beautiful tapestry brick fireplace, also large dining room with double French doors between dining room and living room, large hall, kitchen and bath; No. 1 oak floors downstairs.

Second floor has a large hall in center, with four large bedrooms, with closets in all rooms. Large tiled bath, leading from hall to large observation porch. Stairway to exceptionally large attic fully floored. House thoroughly screened and shades included, bone dry cellar with hot water heat, and plumbing of the very best, stationary tubs, No. 1 Buckingham slate roof.

This home was built by the owner, who is a contractor and was not built to sell, but is sacrificing because he is leaving Norfolk.

To learn more about Colonial Place, click here.

To learn more about Sears Homes, click here.

A New Day on Gosnold, Part 4

May 30th, 2011 Sears Homes 2 comments

Saturday morning, my dear husband arose at 5:30, had his morning coffee and by 6:00 am, he had started on his assigned chore: painting the kitchen in old 1925-built Colonial Revival. I helped a bit, but he did the lion’s share of the work on Saturday. Sunday morning, I arose at 3:30 am and started taking down cabinet doors and emptying drawers, so that we might get those painted quickly as well. On Sunday, he rested and I worked.

At noon on Sunday, professional painter (and good friend) Tory Newman joined us, helping expedite the process.  Yesterday at 4 pm, we were pulling up drop cloths and wiping down countertops. It was done. And the result was transformative. Never in my life have I seen three gallons of paint (ceiling, walls and cabinets) make such a difference. As Tory says, “Now you have a high end kitchen to match the rest of your high end house.”

We went from tired beige walls and tired beige cabinets to deep red walls and strikingly white trim and cabinets. And we patched a few old cracks along the way, giving the walls a more unified and solid appearance.

Pictures are below.

And what’s the reason for all this work? We’re selling this grand old manse. Asking price is $319,900. If you’re interested in scheduling an appointment please contact the Realtor.

Ready for the tour? Enjoy the photos below!

Click on links to read parts one, two and three of this story.


The look of the new kitchen (new paint) is just dazzling. Had I known how beautiful it would turn out, I would have done this years ago!


My favorite feature of the kitchen is the large windows over the sink.


The gas stove was installed less than a month ago. Still shiny new!


The cabinets have been painted bright white. Lots of work!




And I'll miss this massive refrigerator with an ice and water dispenser.


A view from the doorway.


The long end of the kitchen has a fish in a fry pan that we bought at the Stockely Gardens Art Show in 2009. It's always been one of my favorite items, and now it matches the kitchen! Fishie does not convey. :)


That's one happy fish!


Wayne, after being permitted entry into the kitchen. Teddy is hoping Wayne is going to drop some food.


The house at 3916 Gosnold Avenue.


Classic lines and high-quality workmanship make this a timeless beauty.


The living room is awash in light with a western and eastern and southern exposure. The living room is 25 feet long and 13 feet wide.

dining room

The spacious dining room has four windows (six feet tall!) and has beautiful oak floors.

Entry foyer

Visitors to our home frequently comment on the beautiful foyer.


Original french doors to the living room and dining room are still in place.


A view from the staircase.


Another view of the foyer.


The house is also a gardener's delight, with provisions to collect and store more than 200 gallons of rain water.


Your own private farm awaits: Tomatoes, corn, cucumbers, zucchini, strawberries, carrots and lettuce will be ready for harvest in about 30 days.


And they all live together in peace - in a fully enclosed living space - safe from racoons and squirrels.


And the world's most perfect strawberry, from my garden.

And flowers, too!

And a flower garden, too!


Carrerra marble under radiator and toilet complement the hex flooring. Work was done in Spring 2010.

Bathroom pretty

Bathroom was restored to its original 1920s appearance.


This 1930s vintage thermostat works beautifully, controlling a 2011 high efficiency gas boiler.

New-old stock from eBay. Vintage doorbell installed in 2008, and it has a beautiful chime!

It's the little things that make an old house a special home. Vintage doorbell installed in 2008, and it has a beautiful chime!


Front entry foyer is 11 feet wide and 25 feet long.

Its done!

Spacious sunporch has built-in bookcases that are 9-feet tall.


Little house (address is 3916-1/2) has a floored attic, vintage windows and slate roof.


Another view of the little house.

uniquely large yard for Colonial Place

Private, off-street parking and a uniquely large yard for Colonial Place make 3916 Gosnold Avenue a quiet oasis amidst a sea of classic old houses.

Street view

View from the street.

Sideyard summertime view

Sideyard summertime view.

And I saved the best for last: The Perfect Pergola

And I saved the best for last: The Perfect Pergola. The design came from a 1924 architectural magazine. Note hipped roof with slate shingles.

Another view

Another view of the pergola. Dog does not convey.

To schedule an appointment, leave a comment below or contact the Realtor.

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