Hello Ohio

After we finished our Kentuck Knob tour, it was just a short 3.5 hour drive to Cleveland, Ohio where our friends Jerry and Sarah live (Well, right outside Cleveland if you want to get technical.).

After catching up while sitting in their back yard sipping drinks, we headed to The Harry Buffalo for dinner. At this point in our journey, everything my mother taught me about how to make healthy food choices got trapped in some inaccessible corner of my brain and I ate this:

While I was eating my deep fried plate of grease, Jerry ate this:

Yes, that’s mac-n-cheese in grilled sandwich form.

While all this was going on, Sarah and Zach were waiting patiently for their meals, which had to be remade because of a lack of ingredient info on the menu (Sarah can’t have the artificial seasoning her chicken had been seasoned with and Zach hates blue cheese which his pizza came piled high with). In a feeble attempt to “document the day,” I took this photo which makes them look more like they’re praying than waiting for food (a good activity when one is waiting for food), so I won’t be winning any awards for my ability to accurately portray a moment, but you get the idea.

Of course, the only logical thing for Jerry and I to do was to keep stuffing our faces – while pointing out the fact that Sarah and Zach had no food.

Of course, eventually they got their food (Thanks Harry Buffalo for being so accommodating!) and all was well. All except our arteries which were slowly clogging.

Except for Sarah’s arteries. She had a salad. Smart girl.

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California Here We Come!

We said goodbye to our first home today. It was so strange to see it empty after living there for over six years.

But now it’s time to move on. To California to be specific. But first a two week road trip…

  • House Name: KENTUCK KNOB
  • Designed For: BERNARDINE & I.N. HAGAN
  • Built: 1953

Our trip began in Dunbar, PA with a tour of Kentuck Knob house designed by Frank Lloyd Wright.

The house was built in the traditional Usonian style and reminded me a lot of the Zimmerman house, also Usonian, in Manchester, NH. Kentuck Knob was a beautifully tranquil space, and Zach and I thoroughly enjoyed our visit.

We arrived around 12:30, which gave us just enough time to grab a quick bite to eat in their lovely little greenhouse cafe.

Then we took a short bus ride up to the house where Diana, our tour guide, gave us an informative tour of the house…

…and then encouraged us to walk the short path over to the scenic outlook.

We weren’t allowed to take any interior shots, so I only have exterior photos. One of the most interesting parts of the tour was the uniquely-designed “sun dial” created by the windows in the overhang of the veranda.

The shapes cast by the sun, move across the floor as the sun rises and sets. During this time of year, they run right down the center of the floor at noon, but during other times of the year they are near the doors off the living room or by the perimeter wall. Such a cool concept!

After the tour, we took the path to the “Sculpture Meadow” filled with, you guessed it, sculptures. They even had a couple Andy Goldworthy installations including this “Floodstones Cairn.”

And this interesting sea of red people.

And this weird cast iron piece from France. Zach and I think it may have been a shower or an outhouse.

There was even an apple core designed by American artist, Claes Oldenburg.

And a piece of the Berlin wall.

Eventually we ended up back where we started, at the greenhouse cafe and shop.

I think this is one of my favorite Wright houses to date. We’ve got several other house visits planned during this trip, so we’ll see how they all stack up.

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I’m Lovin’: Amazing LEGO Birds

I found these amazing LEGO birds on the Colossal website today. They’re designed and constructed by Thomas Poulsom. The open wings are amazing. And don’t you just love that hanging box of rennet?

If you love these birds too, head on over to the LEGO website and show Thomas some lovin’ support.

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Elements Of My Childhood

When I was young, my mom and my nana made a lot of my clothing. My mom sewed and my nana crocheted. A while back, my mom gave me a bag of what remained from my childhood. I carefully washed each piece, but that’s as far as I got. Since then I’ve just been moving them from one area of the house to another, planning to eventually photograph all of them for posterity. Well, I finally got around to it. I went to Joann’s and bought some white muslin fabric to use as a backdrop, laid it out on the living room floor, and carefully placed each dress, coat, skirt, and sweater in the middle of the fabric, one at a time, until I had photographed all of them. As I was styling each piece, I realized how much love and care went into making each of them. All of the dresses my mom made had pockets in them. One of them even had a little appliqué turtle sewn on the front, near the collar, like a Lacost alligator. Each button had been carefully selected. Each sweater edge had been expertly finished. Each lining lovingly sewn. Even the dirndls, a traditional German dress, which came from my aunt and uncle in Germany had been sewn with great care (albeit in a factory, but well made none-the-less). No detail was overlooked, from the appliqués to the buttons, to the matching aprons and decorative edging.

And now comes the slightly difficult part, letting them go. I know it’s just clothing, but it’s also a little piece of my past wrapped up in love and happy memories of feeling special and pretty, as every little girl should feel at some point. But it’s time to pass them on. I’m giving them to two make that three very dear college friends so their little girls can feel special and pretty. Who knew a carefully selected button or a delicately stitched sweater edge could be so powerful. Thanks Mom…Thanks Nana…for making me feel special and pretty.

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Chillin’ on Cape Cod

Zach and I spent the long holiday weekend relaxing on Cape Cod at his parents’vacation home. Zach’s dad met us there, and we were able to spend a couple days visiting with him before he had to head home. While we were there, Jean and Josh (Zach’s bro and sis-in-law) also popped down for a short visit.

Of course, no visit to the cape is complete without taking a gander at what’s kicking around in the basement. The house was built in the 60s so there’s lots of cool vintage stuff interspersed amongst some not-so-cool vintage stuff. But it’s all waiting to be rediscovered. This trip we found (Josh found, to be exact) a cool blow up raft designed for lounging on the water with your best pair of oversized, white-rimmed sunglasses (think Jackie O) and a cool beverage at your disposal. What? there’s no cup holder for said beverage? Well this cannot be allowed! Don’t panic. Jean took care of this gross over site by the raft-building people.

It was a lovely weekend filled with birthday cake (for Zach’s b-day), micro brew (for everyone), a brewery tour of Cape Cod Beer, some night-time beach walking, a bit of fishing, and lots of kayaking and eating (plus some yard work thrown in for good measure.).

I’ll leave you with this lovely shot of the water taken from the back deck. It looks like it was taken in the middle of autumn but those golden tones are actually salt-damaged leaves caused by hurricane Irene when she got all pissy and flung a bunch of salt water around. I still think it looks lovely though.

cape cod

Did anyone do anything fun this Labor Day weekend? I’d love to hear about it.

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