POLL: Do you have any significant home renovations planned for 2012?

As we progress into 2012, we at Houstory Publishing are curious: What changes do you have planned for your home this year? Maybe you’ll be painting the bedroom, replacing your kitchen cabinets or putting in new wiring? Or perhaps it will be something even more demanding — such as the addition of a new wooden deck, or a comprehensive living room makeover?

We want to know what your plans are, and so do other house lovers! Make sure to take the poll below, and leave a comment with some specifics.

And if you do have renovation plans, hopefully your project won’t end up being a nightmare.

Renovations are important components of your house’s story, so make sure you are safely recording and preserving them somewhere! Take photos (before and after); log key dates; cite materials used (such as paint colors) and document any other information you think may be beneficial for those who may live there in the future.

They will thank you for your efforts later.

 

POLL: When was the last time you received a handwritten letter?

How would you feel if one day, wandering around your home’s attic, you stumbled upon a box full of documents belonging to the home’s former owners?

Inside the box: plot maps, deeds, census records and stories – documented in handwritten letters (revealing a cherished piece of the author’s personality) – of what life in the home was like day-to-day, as well as significant events that may have occurred.

Handwriting: An endangered species?

Most would call this discovery a treasure — particularly the handwritten letters. In this age of digital media, tweets and blog posts, the simple beauty and depth a handwritten letter conveys is in many ways priceless because of how seemingly rare it is.

One of the things that makes a Home History Book archival journal different from digital media, such as software and Web sites, is the ability to display the handwriting — and in turn — the personality of the people who use it. While raw genealogical information in the form of spreadsheets, digital records and maps are fascinating of course, there is an added dimension of personality and texture that handwriting conveys.

In honor of National Handwriting Day earlier this week (Jan. 23), we are asking you a poll question. We’d be very interested to see what you have to say.