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Monday, March 30, 2015

Nesting: More kitchen plans

I'm beginning to narrow down choices and will start to order/stockpile items for Nest II soon. Here's a mood board to show you what's made the cut so least till I find something I like better.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Nesting: Kitchen ideas

Just when you thought you were through reading my obsessive posts about planning and building the Modernist Nest (as my previous home was lovingly dubbed by Anita at Fun and VJs), I have embarked on the planning of Nest II.  As I did the first time around, I'm using Pinterest to organize my ideas and keep track of sources and prices, since that proved so effective before. 

This time, I plan to use a combination of nickel and black fixtures and pulls with white cabinets and concrete-colored countertops. I'm still waffling between wood/laminate floors throughout the entire house or dark gray-brown tile floors in the wet areas. The current incarnation of the house plan has no upper cabinets in the kitchen, favoring instead a whole wall of shelving with doors on each end to hide unsightly items like small appliances and canned goods, while leaving a floor-to-ceiling section in the middle open to store/display vintage dishes and glassware.

I'm having even more fun planning Nest II than I did the original apartment, because I'm getting to correct the mistakes I made. For two years, I said, "If I had it to do again, the next time I'd...," and now I'm getting a chance at that do-over.

All images from

Saturday, March 21, 2015

House-buying saga: The long move

The last time I posted about our move, we planned to drop our furniture and boxes at the new house and then head out on a short vacation...but you know how plans usually work out.

The owners sent people to pick up the furniture they had used to stage the house, the appraiser came out, TV/internet had to be installed, and my friend's memorial service was scheduled, so we stayed in town. At the beginning of the first week we were here, we had snow and ice on the ground. Then it rained and rained some more, so we haven't done much outside.

Since we're leasing the house till our closing date, we agreed not to hang any pictures (or change out any of the fixtures not to our liking), so we haven't done much inside either. For several days, we were "roughing it," relying on our phones' personal hotspots to connect us to civilization, i.e., email and Netflix. Finally, we got TV and internet service, so we set up a "communal TV" in the living room, with the others sitting unused in the sunroom, but even one hooked-up TV that isn't devouring all our data is appreciated.)

We've been a little short on furniture too. My daughter and SIL are buying new living room furniture, so they only kept a sofa and a coffee table to use till the new pieces arrive. On moving day, we realized that the bolts were stripped on my bed, so it wouldn't break down and wouldn't fit into the bedroom in one piece. As a result, I sold it and ordered another one. In the meantime, I've used an IKEA Expedit and a plastic tote as the base for my mattress. We're nothing if not classy!!!

The grandsons, who will have their own rooms as soon as we build another "modernist nest," are sharing a jack-and-jill bathroom with me for now. The resulting decor is interesting, with my things on one side of the counter and theirs on the other. As it turns out, I'm not only sharing a bathroom with a 4-year-old and a 5-year-old, but with a dinosaur and a shark as well.

In spite of adjusting to being under one roof again, life is good. The wait to unpack all our boxes, settle in and decorate is somewhat disconcerting, but we're all making the best of it. The house is so fantastic that it's worth any inconvenience.

My janky makeshift bed...

...till this one arrives

The dichotomy of sharing a bathroom with boys

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Happy news on Harry's birthday

Harry Bertoia would have been 100 years old today. Appropriately, the Bertoia family and Important Records announced today that the Kickstarter project to raise money for the purchase of equipment necessary to save Harry's massive archive of Sonambient tape reels and release unheard works has been fully funded.

With 3 hours to go, 226 backers have raised $18,912, which exceeds the $15,000 goal.  I'm proud to have contributed, and there's still time for you to participate if you'd like.


Friday, March 6, 2015

House-buying saga: Moving day

It's been a week of goodbyes. My best friend of 30 years died Tuesday. I was prepared, but it's still been a tremendous loss. Today I'm moving away from the place I've called home for the past nine years. I will miss the little "nest," but I'm excited about the next chapter in our family's story.

We've found a house that's perfect for us, and we're deep enough into the purchase process that the owners were kind enough to agree to our moving in before closing. The inspection came back great and funding is a done deal on our end, contingent on the appraisal, which will be ordered today.

We're leaving for a short vacation Sunday, hoping all the stress of the past few weeks will melt away, so I'll be off the grid for a while. In fact, I'm surprised I'm even able to post this today. Our TV/internet was supposed to be turned off at this house last night and not installed at the new house till next Thursday when we get back in town.

Till then, I'll give you a sneak peek from the real estate listing.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Donald Judd

Donald Judd (1928-1994) was an American artist and designer known for his minimalist work, although he eschewed that term. After serving in the U. S. Army in Korea, he attended The College of William and Mary, as well as the Art Students League and Columbia University, where he received a degree in philosophy in 1953.

He worked for ARTnews, Arts Magazine and Art International as an art critic for a decade, leaving as part of his legacy a number of theoretical writings on art and exhibition practices.

In the 1960s, Judd began to exhibit regularly in New York, as well as across the United States, Europe and Japan. His work has been shown at the Whitney Museum of American art in New York, The National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa, the Stedelijk Van Abbemuseum in Eindhoven, The Netherlands, The Saint Louis Art Museum, The Museum of Modern Art in Saitama, Japan, the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, and the Tate Modern in London, among others.

He received grants and awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Swedish Institute, and the John Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. He moved to Marfa, Texas, in the 1970s, where he founded the Chinati Foundation on the site of the former Fort D.A. Russell. According to the Foundation's mission statement and history, the specific intention of Chinati is to preserve and present to the public permanent large-scale installations by a limited number of artists.

From and

Untitled woodblock print

Untitled woodcut and oil on paper

Untitled works in milled aluminum at the Chinati

Bookshelf #34

Standing writing desk


Desk set #33

Corner bench

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Charley Harper

Charley Harper (1922-2007) was an American Modernist painter. He was born in West Virginia and attended the Art Academy of Cincinnati, graduating in 1947. He won the Academy's first Stephen H. Wilder Traveling Scholarship.

After touring the western and southern parts of the United States, he returned to the Academy as a teacher. He later worked at a commercial firm before working on his own. With his wife Edie, also an artist, and their only child Brett Harper, he former Harper Studios.

During his career, he illustrated a number of books, best known among them The Golden Book of Biology. He also illustrated for magazines such as Ford Times, and created many prints, posters and other works.

He chose nature as his primary subject, with birds figuring prominently as his subject.

From, and
All images are from

Blue Jay

Green Jay

Cardinal with Seeds


Brown Creeper

Rosy Finch

Red Wing Blackbird

Swallow-tailed Kite
Painted Bunting
Western Tanager

Mountain Bluebird