The Stephenson Home
By Kathleen Swift
The original owner of what is now the Stephenson Home was Frank Childress, who had the house built circa 1922, which makes it one of the newest homes in the Murphysburg District. Mr. Childress made his fortune as the owner of Lead and Zinc Mining Company located in the area. His legacy lives on with the 1,000 acre Frank Childress Boy Scout Reservation, located near Diamond, Missouri.
Wayne and Kaie Stephenson and their family now live in the historic home.
“We enjoy the daylight from all the windows and, oddly enough, the creaky stairs along with all the little imperfections that come with a house almost 100 years old. We also appreciate the old-school house boiler and radiant heat that still works on cold days.”
At Christmas, the Stephensons dress the house in greenery, red and silver ornaments and sparkling lights. The magic of Christmas is found in every nook and cranny from the fabulous staircase to the small trees in the kitchen.
Kaie’s favorite room is the dining room with its poinsettia tree and elegant table. “We can only put out and use that place setting once a year. We are pretty traditional and like that old-time Christmas feel.” And each room reflects that feeling with trees, nutcrackers, snowmen and Santas.
“We always have a live Christmas tree in the living room, and the entire family helps pick it out and decorate it. We also have quite the nutcracker collection and a Christmas village,” said Wayne. You’ll find stockings for the family over the fireplace and the warmth of Christmas lights throughout the house.
“Now that we have kids, I think it reminds us both of a simpler time when we were kids,” said Wayne. “We love that magical time of the year. The whole mystery of Santa, and then as you grow older, the appreciation and celebration of Jesus. There’s plenty of time for our kids to grow up; it happens too quickly. So, we cherish this special time of the year as a family.”