Some years after My Gentleman left us, My Lady and I were pursuing a favorite pastime musing about the past and all the people that had been a part of my ascension to “the Queen of Academy Street”. While sharing these memories, the thought came to us that many people had memories that even we never knew about.
We started thinking about how we could capture some of the favorite recollections that our friends had experienced through the years. Viola! A light went off in both our heads–a community wide contest! Why not? we had invited the entire town to my one hundreth-year-old Birthday Party, why not invite everyone to share their recollections of me?
Of course, we would need prizes to entice people to enter our contest. We began by encouraging people to submit their very favorite memory to My Lady. That was the beginning of “The Pink House Contest!”
Here are some of the entries to The Contest
Darelyn (D J) Mitch 1st place
Lana Calloway 2nd place
The Pink House
by Darelyn DJ Mitsch
Historic Victorian. Southern Charm. Gal-Pal Palace.
Magical Gatherings. Conversational Wisdom.
Queen Mum Sheila. King Doorman Carroll.
Big Girl Meetings. Campaigning Candidates. Hosted Dinners.
Women’s Work. Fund Raising. Fun Raising. Laughter.
Pink Lemonade. Birthday Cake. Surprise Parties. Christmas Parties.
Scented Candles. Snow Globes. Backdoor Friends. Happiness.
Pink Tile Floor. Wine Bar. Copper Pots.
Silver Platters. Crystal Goblets. Raising Toasts.
Angels. Porch Swing. Rocking Chairs. Sweet Tea. Lazy Daze.
Grand Piano. Music. Canapes.
Family. Children. John Thorne. Exchange Students.
Cupola. Artist’s Renderings. Cary’s Gem.
Fireplace Warmth. Fairy Lights. 21 Stairs.
Generosity. Academy Street Strut. Spirited Storytelling.
Helpful Hands. Generous Connections. God People. Sunday School Class.
Stilettos. Monogrammed Cuffs. Crazy Socks. Sequined Silk.
Embracing Strolls. Rose Garden.
Supper Club. Chocolate Fondue. Banana Pudding. Family. Clients. Friends.
How does one capture Sheila and Carroll Ogle’s love for each other and the Ogle Guess House they brought back to life in a single story? The transformation of this precious landmark, first in their hearts and then by their hands, highlights Cary’s history and evolution. They intended it to become OUR HOME, a realized vision and the heart of North Carolina’s most global community. And all who enter find themselves hugged up with new friends and shared stories . . .
In the Kitchen!
Christmas Party at the Pink House
by Lana Calloway
1999 was an “adjustment” year for me. As December arrived I was getting into the holiday spirit and looking forward to spending time with my family and friends. I received my invitation to the annual Pink House party and decided I was in a really good place to strike out on my own, be a part of the festivities and mingle with my friends—no agenda in site except to wear my finest dress and have a wonderful evening. Within minutes of arriving and greeting all my special girlfriends I was introduced to Jerry Mosley, a friend of Sheila and Carroll Ogle, that had stopped by for a quick visit and to drop off a Christmas Gift. The gift, I learned later, was an annual tradition that Jerry and his late wife Jane, a very dear friend of Sheila’s, had given to the Ogles for many years—a White House Collector’s Ornament. I also found out later that Jerry almost didn’t stop and this story would not have been. That ornament has become a very special symbol in our lives.
Jerry and I started chatting and never stopped that first evening . . . over drinks, appetizers, dinner and coffee. During the party we walked up stairs to the cupola as Jerry told me stories about his family being in the house on many occasions over the years. I, too, had attended many events in the Pink House over the years but our paths had never crossed. The evening ended with an exchange of business cards and expectations that we would see each other the following week at a book signing hosted by Sheila and Carroll. So it was there we committed to our first “date” and that was the beginning of our special love affair. It was meant to be from the beginning. There were too many coincidences to our meeting at that particular moment in time for us to know it was anything but God’s Hand that brought us together. Jerry and I married five years later and spent our first night as husband and wife at The Matthews House (also owned by Sheila and Carroll) surrounded by our friends and family that followed our love story from the Pink House. Carroll officiated our wedding that special day—September 10, 2005—and our story continued.
Fast forward. Jerry and I recently celebrated our 13th Wedding Anniversary. Our beautiful blended family includes Jerry’s two children and my two children and their spouses and seven grandchildren. We have not missed a single Christmas Party at the Pink House in 18 years and we continue the annual tradition of giving the White House Ornament—they now require a tree dedicated to the full collection. Sheila and Carroll graciously agreed to host Jerry’s son’s wedding reception in the Pink House in July 2012 . . . a continuation of our love, affection and celebration for the Ogles and the place where Jerry and I met. Our holiday plans always include visiting the Pink House, delivering the White House Ornament and a smooch up in the cupola.
Love and Hugs,
by H Paul Hodges III
"I remember like it was yesterday; the brisk, cool December air, on the Saturday prior to Christmas Eve. As I escorted my Granny, along the paved side walk of Academy Street, I watched her angelic grin as we approached the grandeur of any home I had ever seen; the Guess-Ogle Home, or as I referred to it, "Lady Pink." Soft, tear-drop lights twinkled in each window, as the aromas of cinnamon apples escaped from the front porch entry. The stately Victorian home, chiseled with its gingerbread moldings and stained glass windows was awaiting her yearly guest to arrive in what many claim to be the Christmas party of the season. For me, "Lady Pink" was every bit of a Southern matriarch of the town of Cary, as it's very own residents. For my Granny, it was the revival of her hometown's charm and grace."