20 December 2016

Grand Theft Grammy

Tis the season for going to the movies. I have three grandsons I want to take to one of the new wonder movies out at this time. Maybe the new Star Wars movie. When I asked those who’ve seen the movie, they raved about it but were hesitant to recommend it for my two youngest grandsons—Andy who is four and his brother, Evan, who is six. I agreed that the plot may be too complicated and the battle effects too fierce.

That does not sound like an Andy movie. Though he DID con me into letting him play Grand Theft Auto a few weeks ago.

I was pretty sure he wasn't allowed to play it, but when asked he said, Yes, I am.

So I watched this sleazy dude who lives in a trailer court try to get out of bed, dress, leave the trailer, and get on his motorcycle. Then he couldn't drive out of the yard in the desert where he lived. I wondered why this guy was acting like a 4-yr-old. OHHHHHH, there's a 4-yr-old at the controls, I reminded myself.

Just about that time, the guy stumbles into a growling dog and says what I think was a curse word, but maybe SHOOT I thought to myself, until Andy grabbed the remote and muted the volume reassuring me that, We don't need the sound, Grammy.

And I was pretty sure he should not play this game. But by then I was really interested in how this guy was gonna survive, since I've never played GTA myself.

Then, Sleazy Dude goes to someplace with posters of naked women on the walls or maybe he went back into his own trailer, and once again I started to ask, Are you SURE you are supposed to play this game? But before the SURE came out of my mouth he had changed the scene and was shopping for a new vehicle. And a new character as it turns out.

 Things went along well for a while with the new character who lives in a plush Hollywood cliff-side home. Andy gave me a tour of the house and the pool and the garage and the patio view. WOW! Vicarious living through Play Station I thought, and made a note to add GTA to our Play Station at home so I could visit more Hollywood houses. Oh, and Andy skillfully left the scantily clad woman in the master bedroom to go down to the living room, out the front door, and hop into the amazing open air sports car.

What d'ya know, we hear the garage door open--of the actual house we are in; and I'm pretty sure his mother is home. Andy shut the game down and ran to greet his mother. Usually he is not that eager to welcome her home and I KNEW, with absolute certainty, that he was not supposed to play GTA. So, I said, Hi. Andy and I were playing....

But a with a force greater than any 4-yr-old has ever mustered, Andy clamped his tiny little hand over my mouth, secured it with the other hand and pushed me back onto the sofa. MMMMMmmmmmmphphphphmmmm, I tried to tell his mother. I was laughing so hard I couldn't have spoken even without the tiny palms locked over my lips.

I tried again later to tell his mother but again he tackled me and smothered me with his little hands. When he'd left the room, I asked her if he could play something called Grand Theft Auto. OF COURSE NOT, his mother said, not in a whisper.

Oh, I said, I didn't think so. She gave me a look that said, WHY did you let him?

27 March 2016

Lost the Lamb

This lamb needs to be resurrected for Easter table. Ignore those Pinterest photos of cute little lamb cakes. Take a look at reality. 

03 March 2016

Longview of Winter

Once upon time we lived through winters like this one in the middle of Illinois.

On a street named Longview, our one acre of land bordered hundreds of acres of corn fields or soy beans depending on the year.

 Winters were particularly snowy in those days.

We sought warmth from the unusually efficient wood burning stove,

 also unusual in its design.

The glass tubular shell surrounded the burning logs and two oven doors behind the shell opened to an oven.

 The only thing ever cooked in the oven was one of those stacked rings from a child's toy--the big red one I think. We didn't know the child had placed it on the oven shelf until we smelled the fumes of melting plastic. This fireplace put out some heat, and it did not take long for the ring to melt.

26 February 2016


Crate and Barrel design photo and my own recreation. The C and B family photos leading up the stairs inspired me to surround a small flat screen TV with framed photos and original watercolors.

03 February 2016

Barn Doors Add Interest

The master bedroom of our home has an adjoining room with a great patio sliding-door and windows looking out onto the landscaped yard. An exterior French-door separated the bedroom and the bright, sunlit room when we bought the house. This door functioned fine, as doors go--open, close, lock--but the exterior look of the interior traditional styled door seemed ill-fit for the Colorado contemporary vibe of the bedroom and house in general. We decided to change the existing door to barn doors.
A creative carpenter, Cris, listened to my design ideas and came through spot on. We tore out the carpet in the room and added bamboo flooring to the "Away Room." Two of the four walls are nearly all glass providing plenty of daylight. The closed barn doors create ideal snoozing darkness for the bedroom, and when the barn doors slide open the bedroom lights up with bright natural sunshine. The doors become a focal point in both rooms when closed and when they open the "Away Room" becomes integrated with the bedroom vibe and welcomes the outdoors into the house.

Ecostruct, LLC (Jay and Gloria Jarvis) took care of every instillation detail. They brought their expertise in ordering the hardware, contracting with Cris, and sending Steven the Carpenter to make this project happen in a timely fashion. We love our new "Away Room" and look forward to spending many relaxing hours in this room reading or just enjoying a great view of the yard and the doors.