room for holly’s teenage angst

Today instead of the usual Monday potluck, I am pulling one of my favorite stories out of the archives.

For a reason.

A really good reason.

Please read to the end to find out why…

Holly was once a teenager.

Although Holly is naturally perky, the teenage years turned Holly’s perkiness into springy teenage angst.

Springy teenage angst can be identified by continuous eye-rolling and hyper-debating.

Holly’s bobbing head in off-beat time to her walkman was seen wandering around her room and on the well beaten track to the bathroom she shared.

It may have been because Holly lived directly across from her parents bed room…

It may have been because the family needed a break from all the eye-rolling…

It may have been because someone needed to go to the bathroom…

SOMETHING caused Holly’s dad came up with a brilliant idea!

Genius Holly’s dad…

Let’s build Holly a room in the basement!

Holly’s dad built walls.

Holly’s dad built a bathroom.

Holly’s dad put carpet on the floor.

This new room was very helpful in containing Holly’s teenage angst.

This new room was very helpful in containing Holly’s mess.

Holly did not live alone in her mess.

Holly’s dog didn’t seem to mind the long hours in the bathroom, the constant eye-rolling or the mess.

At the time Holly thought the room was nice.

Now that Holly is no longer suffering from teenage angst she can fully admit that the room was teenage nirvana.

Well, almost teenage nirvana. There was one time when Holly found a small garden snake under her bathroom rug.

And then Holly suffered from legitimate angst.

The End.

This is not the end of the story!

There is more…

After a series of crazy coincidences, I found that this very room that my dad built for me was later the home of fellow blogger, Jennifer from Thursday Drive.   She writes about it HERE.

Jennifer {who I love dearly and think is one of the most amazing writers I have ever read} is in the middle of a mess.   Over a year ago she and her children moved across the country to start a new life after a divorce.   The kids went to visit their dad a few weeks ago and didn’t return.   Jennifer is in need of some help to enforce the custody agreement and see her children again.

If there is any way that you can help, please check out her story on Go Fund Me.   Thank you so much.

Now GO before I start rolling my eyes.


  1. Wow, that is some cliffhanger. I can’t imagine what’s coming next!

  2. I can’t believe that you only had five pairs of shoes!!

    Even I, as a teenaged angsty boy, had more than five pairs of shoes.

    I love comparing the teenaged properly groomed hair to the hair of the I-Have-three-boys Holly from today. 🙂

    I LOVE cliffhangers!!

  3. I forgot to add – at least you emptied the dishwasher, my kids think it’s gross, and I have to remind them that the dishes are actually clean.

    Don’t even ask about filling it.

  4. I’m so jealous of teenage Holly because I couldn’t afford Keds!

    I love stories from the 80’s! I don’t know if you know this but on my blog, I post entries from my teenage journal at the end of every month.

  5. Angie @ KEEP BELIEVING says:

    I had K-Swisses. They were my cheerleading shoes.

    My room was smaller and messier than this. We did have two bathrooms, though. One for my parents and one for me and my sister.


  6. InTheFastLane says:

    Ha ha ha!!! This not only reminded me of my own life in the 80’s, but of life at home with my current teenager. Isn’t the floor there to store clothes, clean or otherwise?

  7. Jenni Jiggety says:

    Nice! I would have loved a bedroom like that! I am pretty sure my parents tried to get the neighbors to take me. I was a door slammer and deliberate stomper.

    Can’t wait to read the rest. Did you roll your eyes at the snake?

  8. Oh no! Why did it have to end there?! *G* As always…LOVE the animated stories!

  9. spinning in our own direction says:

    Ok is this before the eye rolling got you shipped of to Siberia???
    I was so excited there for a second I thought we could be relatives.. You know the whole secret life of Dr. Phil thing..

  10. Oh how I wish I had my own basement ’cause then my mom wouldn’t see EVERYDAY how messy my room was and I wouldn’t have heard EVERYDAY that it was a pigsty and I HAD to clean it up before I would see any boys in football or basketball uniforms. (That threat always worked…must make a note of that for my own dd).

  11. Writer Dad says:

    I can’t wait for parts two and three. These are always wonderful, Holly.

  12. Eternal Sunshine says:

    I want a house with a basement! I wouldn’t build the kids a room down there, I would make a hideaway for me (a grown-up nirvana)

    The best thing about my high school home was that all the bedrooms had a secret hidey hole in the closet. Not sure why, but guess where my diary was??

    Can’t wait for the rest!

  13. My teenage angst was the attic. Low ceilings, no bathroom. And I had bigger hair. I was a Jersey girl, after all!!!!

  14. This is the most readable and entertaining post I’ve read today! Hilarious. And LOVE the art. My sister moved into the ATTIC during her teenage angst period – leaving me with two beds and three big windows, and no draft. That might be what limited my own angst, actually.

    Will check out editions 2 and 3.

  15. Valarie Lea says:

    Oh my goodness, at first I thought you were talking about my daughters! It is scary how similar this is to them. Well except for the fact that their father does not look like Dr. Phil. 🙂

  16. EatPlayLove says:

    hmmm… if we shared any of the same teenage angst it’s not a coincidence you made mention of the window to the outside world. Did you perfect the art of climbing out of it?

    BTW…your dad does look like Dr.Phil!

  17. Elaine A. says:

    That is like so NOT FAIR that you had like your own basement. Totally Rad though!

    (I did have my OWN teen angsty room but not my own bathroom. I had to share with nasty older boys – UCK!)

  18. Threeboys1mommy says:

    I have a feeling Holly’s dad looks just like Dr. Phil. Me also thinks Dr. Phil has a fancy new sauna/poker table/pool table in his basement… that’s where this is going right? You can tell me H, don’t make me wait!

  19. On a limb with Claudia says:

    You are so lucky you only have one brother and he’s younger than you. So. So. So. Lucky.

    You would have had that rolly eyes, bathroom hogging slapped out of you by any sister.

    I suppose that’s why God gave you all those boys. In his infinite wisdom, he knew a girl child would slap the shit out of your bathroom hogging, eye rolling ways. 😉

  20. Tiaras and Tantrums says:

    oh my that was HILARIOUS – I have two girl s- far from teens – but I think I may save this for 10 years!!!!!!!

  21. OMG .. I was an eye roller too .. still am …

    Cant wait to read Jennifer’s part tomorrow


  22. ROFL at your Dad and the Dr. Phil comment.
    You are too good!
    Will eagerly await the continuation of the saga!

  23. that is so hysterical. I thought you had a super cool multi-colored carpet at first. then i realized you were just like me.

  24. Kate Coveny Hood says:

    I LOVE this. Funniest thing I’ve read all day (And I’ve been avoiding work by reading blogs all day – so this is a big compliment). I think my parents would have put me in the basement if we didn’t live in an apartment.

  25. the planet of janet says:

    i think i gave birth to your evil twin 14 years ago. she has taken the eye roll to new levels.

    although she DOESN’T have ’80s hair, i will give her that.

  26. says:

    Oh, Holly. I wish we had basements here, because I would’ve def lived in teenage nirvana in that kind of messy room. And, I still listen to Van Halen – you aren’t knocking them, are you?

  27. well, i’m feeling a little teenage angst jealousy over your basement room. humph!

  28. what a nice dad Holly has, he must really love Holly….or really, really, want her out of sight!

  29. AMomTwoBoys says:

    Heh. I love that you've recruited Jennifer & Madge into this story.

    Can't wait to see what they've got to add!

  30. The Stiletto Mom says:

    OMG, that was freaking hilarious! Thank you though, for clarifying your dad did not look like Dr. Phil and the dog was not a goat. It would have been a very confusing story otherwise…
    Thanks for a good belly laugh!

  31. Angie Ledbetter says:

    I had a similar teenage angst room (TAR)…only it was shared with my twin sister *sigh*, was upstairs from the kitchen *oh, the noise*, and our very conservative parents did NOT allow the AC on unless it was over 120 degrees in the house. So we got all the kitchen and house heat that rose. *oh gross sweaty us* And it was really hard to sneak out a second floor window. *eye roll*

  32. ReluctantFarmChik says:

    I’m loving the beginning of this story – because I’ve never seen Jennifer OR Madge use markers – and the anticipation is just killing me 🙂 Excellent premise – whether it’s illustrated with words or pictures.

  33. Oh, if I could SQUEAL I would! I loved this entry, Teenage Holly. And I will be sure to tune into Jennifer H and Mad Madge, too.

    Fantastic post!!! And pictures, too. You had QUITE the dad, who didn’t look like Dr. Phil.

  34. Maggie May says:

    you lucked out!

  35. Auds at Barking Mad! says:

    I'm going to make my 18 year old daughter read this post. Although she's now at college, it will open her eyes as to why we put her in the basement. Sans snakes but plus a few fat spiders.

    Looking forward to parts II & III!

  36. Ooh, ooh,what happens next? Tell us more!! Love the drawings!

  37. Miss Jack says:

    First time here….you visited me so I’m returning the favor. Okay, now that I got that out of the way. I must say you are one heck of a storyteller. I just love the drawings. And may I add that you have the whole 80’s bit down, you had me reminiscing about my own teenage life. Sigh. Thanks for a walk down memory lane. Can’t wait for the rest of the story. I may just have to come back!

  38. So, are you really angst free all the time now? Me, not so much.

  39. Ok, either it is the NyQuill, the fact that it is almost midnight and I am having soup and wathing Jon & Kate Plus 8, or that I am sick but I didn't get that or know where it came from but in a strange way I totally got it!

  40. Jenn @ Juggling Life says:

    My 14 year old is living your life. Just not in a basement–in the original master bedroom in our remodeled house. It has not cured her angst.

  41. MoziEsmé says:

    Wow – you were allowed to have a walkman?! Definite nirvana!

    Though in fairness to my parents, they let me use theirs. But no van halen tapes in the house…

  42. Manic Mommy says:

    I think I could have taught eye-rolling as an elective. Dude, you had your own bathroom? And most likely a separate entrance to the house. Your dad, Dr. Phil, totally rocks!

  43. My god, that was exquisite. Loved the Dr. Phil line . . .

    Came over from Jen’s, and will have to stick around for a bit . . . if you don’t mind . . .

  44. Threeundertwo says:

    I had K-Swiss myself.

    You have quite painfully described my 12 year old daughter, down to what her room looks like. Wish we had a basement to shove -er- move her into.

  45. Lisa@verybusymomwith4 says:

    I wish we had basements here–I’d make a ‘mommy only’ room for my mommy angst 🙂

  46. OMG my dad turned our garage into a “studio apartment” of teenage angst for me too!

  47. Sarcastic Mom says:

    Hahah, very cute!

    I like how among the things on the floor there are different colors for “unidentified” and “who knows!”


  48. Hey Holly! Life has interrupted my blog life, and I’m so far behind. I am WAY behind on you, but I think I’ll catch up… soon… really… maybe in a couple of weeks… I don’t know.

    Anyway, I like to go in chronological order, so I feel weird doing this recent post, but I have to in order to stay caught up on my cousin’s blog. (You know, family and all. I have to stay caught up over there.)

    This is hilarious. My favorite part is the psychadelic floor with the legend (and the empty closet).

  49. You are so funny! Love the “Dr. Phil” dad and the dog – not goat – ACK!

    Loved this – as usual! Kellan

  50. I was too uncool to have teenage angst. I didn’t dare roll my eyes so that anyone could actually SEE them roll, but I did a lot of stomping. My parents really should have dug a basement and put me into it. Two stories. High water table and all.

    Funny as always, Miss Holly!

  51. Also, I have tried TWICE to Stumble this, with no luck. No idea why. Maybe it’s my stupid work PC. I’ll try later from my beloved antique Mac.

  52. Trannyhead says:

    How the hell did you get so lucky as to have a teenager den? I had a similar setup to your FIRST setup, except that in mine, the bathroom was WAY too far away from the bedroom. So when I walked to the bathroom from bedroom, I had plenty of time to sigh in disgust at my surroundings while strolling the well-beaten path.

  53. Weaselmomma says:

    I love your pictorials! If a teen rolls their eyes and no one is around to see, does it still make them feel superior?

  54. Lol – this is awesome!

  55. Oh my goodness, the shoulder pads…lol. Do you remember how they used to have velcro underneath sometimes so you could adjust them? Too funny! And lucky you with a basement bedroom- who didn’t want THAT as a teenager! Score!

  56. HOw did you work big hear with headphones? I went with big bangs and side wings & left the rest flat, which made the initial placement of the headphone tricky (having to lift them over the bangs & then settle them in front of the wings, but did not mess the hair up otherwise.

  57. and I meant big HAIR, not big hear since that is just a matter of volume control.

    But then, so is big hair actually….

  58. I still love this story. Especially since you took care of the fierce snake trapping.

    Still waiting to see if that faux brick will come back around, like bamboo wallpaper did. Not hopeful.

  59. If I’d seen the snake I would have moved back upstairs. Once you have one snake they go and tell their snaky friends and then pretty soon you are known as the house of snakes.

    I still don’t have my own bathroom.

  60. We did an ’80’s theme day at work a few weeks ago.

    I did not participate.

    I no longer own leg-warmers. I ripped the shoulder pads out of everything I owned that had them. My lace fingerless gloves are long since gone, I no longer own pastel pumps.

    I boycotted.

    I’m already traumatized enough.

    Western Day?

    No problem.

    Pajama Day?


    You could have even thrown Western Pajama Day in there and I would have been happier to wear my jammies with a ten gallon hat and boots than I would have been to relive the 80’s.

  61. I can’t get part III from Madge!!! Help-I have to finish this 🙂

  62. I just figured it out-Madge deleted all…but what happens??????????

  63. WOW! That is one awesome coincidence. How cool!!

    I think your carpet was taken from the same catalog as mine 🙂

  64. Oh wow! You weren’t kidding! That totally gave me goosebumps! Love, love, love that!

  65. Holly, I just re-read this & I am concerned about the amount of time you spent in the bathroom. Need more fiber?

  66. I grew up in the 80’s too. When the 90’s rolled around, my younger sister (one of the 5) would laugh at the pictures in my high school yearbook! Raccoon eyes, big hair. The 80’s.

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