I Dream of Jeannie

July 27, 2013

From Janelle:

 “I went from Phoenix, Arizona All the way to Tacoma, Philadelphia, Atlanta, L.A. Northern California where the girls are warm So I could be with my sweet baby, yeah.”  These Steve Miller Band RockN Me lyrics kept playing in my head as we spent six hours (yes six!) in the car yesterday to get to the Colorado River or as we call it, “The River”.  It should be less than a five hour drive.  Don’t ask.  “I went from Palm Springs, California all the way to Arizona so I could get a day off to relax, yeah.”

A required errand in Palm Springs gave me the perfect excuse to drag Lewis to do a little shopping.  Who knew there are disposable placemats and washable disposable napkins.  Just think, no more stain remover feverishly applied unsuccessfully to spaghetti sauce remnants and embarrassment when a discolored piece of fabric is plonked in front of a guest.  I bought an orange set of both.  Lewis, as usual, paced while the transaction occurred.

Disposal placemats and washable disposable napkins

Disposal placemats and washable disposable napkins

Dining room chairs are the only expected furniture purchases.  Our $4.99 aqua Ikea foldups are perfect additions for a large dinner party but they are not setting foot on my new floors as the main event any longer.  I know, it’s insane that those actually feigned to be proper dining chairs but I just never found anything that I liked enough to buy them and as we would be remodeling eventually figured that we’d acquire some then.  I had no idea it would be ten years….

We have until the end of the month to decide if the orange dining chairs at Distinctive Home are “the ones” as the 20% off everything orange sale ends July 31.  I love them but there are so many fabulous pieces it is so difficult to choose.  Hence the Ikea chairs.

Are these The Ones?

Are these The Ones?

I convinced Lewis to stop at Swank Interiors where I purchased my Fabulous Retro Light a couple years ago.   Clyde happily greeted us when we arrived and toured the store with us as we shopped, wagging his tail in appreciation of our choices.  Aperitifs and digestifs are served in antique gold gilded glasses in our house but they must be hand washed.  A set of six dishwasher friendly 1960’s Hazel Atlas Capri Dot blue whiskey old fashioneds were placed neatly into my shopping bag.

Swank glasses

A 70’s two part panel painting, reminiscent of a bulls-eye or Parcheesi game board caught my eye and I think that it would look amazing in the guest/TV room next to the HUDDLE bed/couch.  Lewis tries to pretend I’m not actually seriously contemplating buying anything as it always makes him nervous to spend money but he did rub a genie bottle signed by Barbara Eden in the hopes that something good would appear.  Maybe we should buy that too?

Swank vintage 70's painting

From Lewis:

Why is everything so expensive in Palm Springs??? Even in the off season. I get the fact that everyone sees art differently but it does not “speak to me”.  It’s official Janelle does not get unsupervised travel to Palm Springs.

Ok now you have to admit if you’re a guy who grew up watching Jeannie in the early 70’s  you couldn’t help wanting to rub something.

What do you think, is the Parcheesi painting and orange dining chair “The One?”


Our house has an Outside?

July 20, 2013

From Janelle:

The floor guy came yesterday to measure the moisture content in the wood and the manufacturer will let us know Monday when it can be laid down.  The wood is patiently “acclimating” so that it can be installed over the radiant (water heated) apparatus with the appropriate amount of humidity.  I, however, am not so patient.

After the flooring is in we can install our refrigerator, dishwasher and bar appliances.  My dishwasher drawer is getting a workout as I have started to stock the cabinets with treasures emptied from boxes hidden in the attic for the past year and everything is getting a quick wash.   We are happy with the layout of the kitchen; let’s hope there is enough room for all my pretty things.  Lewis makes fun of me and says that I have a “dish fetish” but I just can’t help myself.  I love beautiful serving pieces.  Yes, it tastes the same off a paper plate but the presentation is (almost) as important as the quality of the food.

We haven’t given much thought to the outside of the house as it’s an ugly 80’s A-frame and we figured that someday we will do something about that but we decided to replace the master and office sliding doors and windows upstairs and stucco the entire house.  There is dust and piles of stucco EVERYWHERE.  I’ll never have the modern, boxy look that I love but maybe we can add a façade to cover up the “triangle”.  When we started tearing out the “barn look” on the outside of the house we discovered that there were water lines hiding in the protruding stucco and that’s why they were there.  Ugh, who knew!  The Money Pit project continues….

From Lewis:

Someone brought up the movie The Money Pit with Tom Hanks. I remember it being a funny movie but now that we are living it we will have to rent it to see if it still is as funny.   Probably not.  As for the water  line, who would have thought to run it on the outside of the house and hide it in the decorative trim.  Just proves you don’t know until you start digging.  Anyway looking forward to the Kegerator being installed SOON.

What project did you get into that you hadn’t expected during a remodel?


The remodel has crept upstairs....

The remodel has crept upstairs….

The A-Frame has to go...

The A-Frame has to go…

Who would hide water lines in the OUTSIDE of their house?

Who would hide water lines in the OUTSIDE of their house?

The "Barn" has got to go...

The “Barn” has got to go…

We ARE Radiant! Why some cat may break out a rendition of “Disco Duck”

July 14, 2013

From Janelle:

Contractor Don makes fun of me. Not in a malicious manner but using the same technique little boys used when they pulled your pigtails because they liked you. I work with a bunch of guys and came to Lewis years ago, concerned, because they were constantly giving me a hard time about one thing or another and I thought that maybe they didn’t think that I was doing a good job (typical woman self-doubt). Here is something that you should all know ladies, a basic Man Show concept, something that as a grown adult female most likely never occurred to you; that behavior is translated as affection. OH. Duh. Over millions of years during the Evolution of Man, nothing’s really changed since grade school, right? I’m now a pro at dishing it out as much as they dish it to me, insults are traded as greetings and everyone’s happy.

Contractor Don shows me amazing (and not inexpensive!) options and then makes fun of me that it is “only the best for Janelle”. Honestly, stop showing me these things! I didn’t know that I needed heated floors until he presented the concept. In addition to the advantages of energy savings and evenly distributed radiant heat, the enormous furnace flue was removed creating space for a media cabinet and our ceiling is unmarred by ugly heater registers. Those benefits outweigh the I-don’t-know-and-don’t-want-to-think-about-any-more-additional-costs, right?

As usual, I had no idea what I was getting us into. The installers were here all last week laying a solar panel worthy reflective base to house the water elements. It looks like a bell bottomed, flowered silk shirt unbuttoned to the navel, gold chain clad cat could break out a rendition of “Disco Duck” at any moment. If only we had thought of silver flooring before ordering the brown stained maple. The wood arrived at long last yesterday, is “acclimating” and will be ready to install in a week or two.

The system was taken for a test drive and water flows through the orange tubing and no leaks! I forgot to ask; was it warm?

From Lewis:
Really Don. Stop giving her ideas. The only places I’ve seen heated floors and walkways is in the snow country. Luckily we are almost done and we really can’t add much more than we already have. RIGHT?? Well now with the silver and orange discotheque heated sub floor the HUDDLE couch will have a good temporary home. Yeah Baby…

What blows your mind about the opposite sex?




Here Comes the Sun

July 7, 2013

From Janelle:

Southern California is known for endless sunshine, moderate temperatures, surfers and Hollywood. While it is home to all those things, the sun doesn’t always take center stage. “June Gloom” is a little known fact outside of these parts but is a harsh reality. Oh, how you in Minnesota scoff at us but there’s a reason we live in our little slice of paradise and it isn’t because of the cheap housing or light traffic. Some of us wilt without sunshine, our hearts dry up and shrivel just a bit with each passing dismal day, longing for rays of glory to break through the clouds.

Beach dwellers are a seasonal species. While outdoor activity is accessible any time of the year, we, for the most part, seek shelter in our toasty homes like the rest of the country; it’s just too cold and dim to go out but when the sun bursts through, the inhabitants immerge as sand crabs from the ocean, greedily inhaling the salty air. I just can’t get myself motivated for a walk or bike ride I until I see sunbeams. Lewis doesn’t need illumination motivation and it drives him nuts.

It has been balmy for the past week but the day before July 4th was overcast and I was worried that the main attraction would not make an appearance. As an annual tradition we host a small bunch to celebrate our nation’s independence and The Sun is a requirement. A couple years ago fog was so heavy that the thunderous firework explosions were heard but not seen, a very sad day indeed. The sun gods were happy this July 4th, The Sun gave a spectacular performance and all was good.  

People assumed that we wouldn’t entertain during the remodel but our holiday and summer Booze Cruises stop for nothing. Friends invite their friends and one evening we had twenty people partying in our temporary living room at the foot of the master bed. The jokes were dirty, the decimal level high and some people thought it was odd but we didn’t care, we had a good time. We hosted gatherings in our bombed out bottom floor, a portable garage lamp rigged in the corner of the room the only light. No one cared. Laughter, cocktails, good food and great friends, that is what a home is for.

From Lewis:
It is true. I have met many people whose mood is dependent on the weather. I’m just an all weather person and enjoy any day for what it is…. another day to party!!! It has been harder entertaining during this ordeal but we enjoy sharing times with friends. Can’t wait to have all the food and drinks in the same room. We still have a mini fridge and the coffee pot in the bathroom (we’re waiting until the floors are installed), a mini fridge in the kitchen and our old fridge in the garage. Mixing a cocktail is sometimes a challenge!




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