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June Home of Month — Storybook Magic

June 22, 2020

Five years have passed since Hazel Stream left her longtime west coast home of Vacaville, CA where she was born, lived and raised three, now adult children. She held a variety of jobs including but not limited to: private investigator, freelance writer, membership director of the 50 Corridor TMA, manager of a theatre company where she was also a featured player and director. A modern day renaissance woman if ever there was. Spring of 2015 found her freshly retired and ready to move nearer her daughter Shawna, son-in-law Roger and two teen granddaughters in Fort Wayne. A motivated and capable Shawna wasted no time narrowing the real estate field down to a handful of potential neighborhoods: Forest Park, West Central and Southwood Park. Listings were researched, pictures, messages and dozens of calls logged. Hazel recalls closing her eyes one day with index finger hovering above a Fort Wayne map, leaving it to fate. It landed east of the Old Mill Road roundabout and she thought aloud “The heart of Southwood Park it is!” Shortly thereafter, a listing with an open house presented itself and Shawna arrived on Hazel’s behalf at 4429 Indiana Avenue. Stepping into the entry and a dozen interested people milling about it took her all of 20 seconds to know it was her mom’s next home. Hazel retells her daughters confident frame of mind that day with giddiness, “Please do enjoy looking at my mother’s future home. I am putting an offer in as soon as I can speak with the realtor!”

In July 2015, Hazel made the 2200 mile relocation to Fort Wayne from Vacaville and hasn’t regretted it once. Many of her friends from her former home have come to visit more than once and commented on the beauty of the homes, the historic charm, the trees and winding streets. Hazel always tells them she lives in “the storybooks”. After moving in, she soon repainted all of the rooms, turning the once oak kitchen cabinets white and laying a white hexagon tile floor. The brightening showcases her scarlet and original green fiestaware collection perfectly as well as the relocation of the refrigerator across the room, out of the breakfast nook where a green wood table and two chairs now sits under a window. Red and white gingham fabrics and a 40’s glass front hutch suits the soul of the 1927 kitchen. A soft buttery yellow in the dining room with a high perimeter shelf encircles the room displaying green depression glass, formal vintage dinnerware and seasonal treasures. The living room is relaxing in an icy blue also trimmed with crisp white featuring a full wall of built-in shelves displaying beautiful memories, pictures and mementos from trips and places she’s lived. It also holds her fabulous Halloween witch hat collection in the fall and a beautiful Christmas village in the winter. All of the carpets were removed and hardwood floors refinished and topped with wool area rugs. A realistic looking faux fireplace was installed on the wall between the doorway to the dining room and kitchen because having a fire without a mess was important during the winter in northern Indiana. Even the stairway treads and kicks were refinished and the spines of favorite classic books front each step.

Last summer she pointed her creative wand toward the home’s exterior; a new roof and verdant paint scheme for the cedar shingles, trim and fence. The two green hues support a punchy purple accent on the shutters and a new custom wood screen door that opens to a cozy screened porch. There is more purple magic on the homes wood front door you can enjoy from a rattan chair or swing as well as views of the beautiful flower beds and window box that Angel tends. The exterior color scheme was born of her love for the beloved broadway show ‘Wicked’ which she has seen many times. Truly, the only thing wicked about 4429 Indiana Avenue is the beauty and magic good witch Hazel has bestowed on her corner of Southwood Park. And we all benefit from it, no matter the season.💜💚

Backstory: When I first met Hazel Stream late September of 2016 it was to bestow upon her the home award based solely on Shawna & Roger Dau’s inaugural Disney-quality Halloween vignette. And it absolutely deserved it. As a then one year resident of our neighborhood, she was already acting in plays at the Arena Dinner theatre in West Central, assisting backstage at the Civic Theatre and had made dozens of friends in our neighborhood and in various organizations. She has a big giving and welcoming heart and there might be something in her from which we can all take inspiration. The community harvest food donation barrels at her 2018 Halloween display were filled multiple times during the month providing much needed food for those in need. Since I gave her an award for that magnificent gift of a Halloween display she shares with all of us I felt it unfair not to give her one for the transformation she has made to her home and garden in the past four years.

Erika Stuller

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