On the night of October 31, 1990 Brett and I began our first holiday tradition as a couple. Brett had finally found a job in NE Ohio and was driving up from Cincinnati to begin our life together. I wanted to commemorate the event with something special. I purchased a Department 56 Snow Village house, wrote “Brett, Welcome home! Love, Tom” underneath and made it the centerpiece of his welcome home celebration on our kitchen table.
Every year for many years Brett and I bought another house to join the Kenwood House in our under-the-tree Snow Village display. We have slowed down recently as the collection of buildings began to overtake our basement storage. I have been buying Brett the barns and dairy related buildings over the past few years. Today, we display 10 building on our mantle and above our entertainment center.
It’s interesting to see that the Kenwood House is retired and has a value of about $350, much more than the $50 I paid for it in 1990. I destroyed its collectible resale value by writing my welcome to Brett on the bottom that night. It has much higher sentimental value to us.