November 30, 2010

* I'm in a little bit of a panic ...

This was the title of an e-mail I received from Sylvia the night before last.  When I opened it, the message was short and sweet.  "I've lost my wallet!"

I must say that is enough to put anyone in a 'little bit of a panic' anywhere in the world today.  We talked on the phone.  It seemed reasonable there were only two possibilities.  Either she had dropped it or set it down when we were at the garage sale (a private showing by the way).  Or it had fallen out of her bag in the taxi.  Ruben was called.  No, nothing in the taxi.  Carol (the lady whose home we had been at) was not home.  Red alerts were sent out.  "Call me when you get home, no matter what time it is."

The phone rang at Sylvia's house.  It was Carol.  Pitch black in the yard, she and a friend searched with flashlights and came up empty handed.  Sylvia, wise woman that she is, decided to 'let it go'.  After all, stewing about a lost wallet can make a body sick.  And so, we hung up the phone, and with nothing else to be done, went to bed.

Early the next morning, I received another e-mail entitled:  "CAROL FOUND MY WALLET!".  Happy days are here again.  Such a relief.  Celebrations were at hand.  Sylvia took us both out to breakfast at the Sierra Nevada - such a treat.  It was one happy morning!  Breakfast and good company were enjoyed by all.  Carol turned out to be such a lovely interesting woman.  I would like to get to know her better.

I've come to the conclusion it's a good thing to celebrate life at any opportunity.  Finding Sylvia's wallet was a great excuse.  Thanks Syl!

Me, Sylvia, the infamous Pink Wallet, and Carol
Across the street from the Sierra Nevada are the old public laundry facilities which are still used regularly by the local women.  San Miguel was founded in 1542, and I'm sure the laundry was not far behind.  I have passed the laundry on a day when nearly all the stone tubs were in use,  the atmosphere busy and abuzz with local gossip.  Today, one lone woman enjoyed her chores in peace under the warm Mexican sun.

Laundry day in San Miguel.  Historical Public Laundry


I enjoyed a walk through Parque Juarez.  The entrance decorated with crepe paper flowers.  Beautiful.
A good day.  Sylvia and her wallet were reunited.  We celebrated the little gifts of life.  Met a new lovely lady.  Walked in the sun.  All is right with my world.

"Think big thoughts and relish small pleasures."  ~H. Jackson Brown, Jr., Life's Little Instruction Book

November 29, 2010

* Garage Sale and Tea with a Friend

Sylvia is nuts about decorating and making a beautiful home.  So am I .... 'nuts' that is!  So we have a lovely common bond.  We talk about colours, paint, furniture, art, gardening, cooking, entertaining, building on, changing, what will look good where, what our latest 'hunts' are all about.  We keep our eyes open for each other when we are out and about.  We share ideas and dreams.

Yesterday, Sylvia spied a post on one of the local lists and sent me a red alert email (good stuff for sale).  Would I like to accompany her and come for tea after.  So this morning, off we went.  Sylvia was looking for a little hutch of some sort ... something 'just right' to fit in a certain spot.  I was looking for folk art, off the wall art, something different to decorate my studio walls.

The 'china cabinet' which was advertised turned out to be something more of a storage piece.  A lovely piece though, made by quiet a well known artist.  Beautiful tin punched doors.  Since it wasn't what Sylvia was needing, I considered it for a storage piece in By The Light.  I considered it for about two seconds and made an offer.  My offer was accepted.  I'll post photographs of furniture on another post.

We also found some lovely little pieces to decorate our walls.  A plate and mask for Sylvia.  Gorgeous beaded pieces for me.  We came away happy as little clams.

Not sure what this is!  Perhaps part of a ceremonial costume, it definitely acts as a loin cloth and ties around the waist like an apron.  Who knows for sure.  It's solid beading, all hand done.  I love it.  It will look great on the walls of By The Light.


An exquisite little purse, all hand beaded.  Also for the wall.  Perhaps it's the beginning of a beaded collection!

I couldn't resist this.  A vintage tin cup and saucer.  Obviously a childs toy, it will become part of a piece of art one day.  I'm putting it with my every growing 'stash'.  ha ha
No explanation needed here.  It will hang somewhere in the Studio.
So off we trotted with our treasures.  Back to Sylvia's where I was greeted by a beautifully laid formal tea table and a wonderful traditional afternoon tea.  We dined on Sylvia's made from scratch pumpkin roll  together with small pieces of chocolate and beautiful camomile tea prepared from the real dried flower. I do adore the ritual of 'afternoon tea'.  We talked of happy things.  I felt very special.

"Come, my friend, let's have some tea and continue to talk of happy things."  ~ Chaim Potok

PS:  A special hello to Al and Doris.  It was so lovely speaking with you yesterday.  Take care of each other.  Sending L O V E!

November 26, 2010

Old Friends look forward to Reunion in San Miguel

In order to understand what exactly is going on here, you may wish to refer to two previous posts ...HERE and HERE.

My dear friends, I and K, are returning to San Miguel for a two month stay in February.  The REALLY BIG NEWS, is they are bringing their foster son 44.

Naturally, I am overjoyed.  I was a little hesitant to let 3/8's know so far in advance as she has a very sensitive side, which can be ... well ... shall we say, a tad difficult to deal with.  I mean, there is crying and then there is CRYING.  Sometimes I simply don't know how to help her shut off the flood gates once they have been opened.

I've been communicating with I and K for some time now, assisting them in finding suitable lodging etc., and 3/8's being the intuitive little thing she is, has known something is going on. Every time I was on the computer discussing the situation, her little head would pop up from between the pillows. It was impossible, I realized, to protect her forever.

Nope ... can't keep much from 3/8's.  She definitely has that 'inner knowing.
Then one day, I had an e-mail from 44.  He was definitely coming to San Miguel with I and K.  Such excitement.  He shared with me the awesome truth that he was the first sheep in his family to travel to Mexico.  He enclosed a photo of himself cloaked in his favorite Michigan State T-Shirt (his foster father's alma mater) .... a very proud photo indeed.

44 in his Michigan State T Shirt
Somehow 3/8's just 'knew' when that e-mail came in.  She was so edgy, I finally explained that 44, I and K were coming to San Miguel.  WELL .... all I can say is ... at least it's over.  For the next while, 3/8's was totally inconsolable. She had missed them so much! She sobbed she was homesick. She missed her tribe.  She climbed down onto the sheep skin (enough to make her cry right there) and simply sobbed for the next six hours.  She did manage to tell me inbetween sobs, she thought 44 was very handsome in his t shirt and she couldn't wait to see them.  It was a long day, believe me.

Poor wee 3/8's sobbing on the sheepskin.
3/8's is back to normal now.  She's as excited as am I.  Close members of our tribe are coming to be with us, and it touches both our hearts deeply.  Excitement abounds.

And Habibi ... what does he think of all this?  He simply sits in his chair, taking it all in.  He's still cold from his last bath.  he he

Little does he know between baths, he has turned pink again from the brick dust.  He's bathing again tomorrow.  SHHHhhh!
 

You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence. - Psalms 16: 11.

November 24, 2010

* Progress in the Jardin

Just a couple of photos to update everyone on what's going on in my Jardin.  The walls still need a second coat of paint .. however it's coming along.

Pedro
First coat complete.
“You need patience to be a good gardener. If you don’t have patience, and you stick with gardening, it will teach you patience.” --Bill Turull Jr

November 21, 2010

* More FUN stuff for "By The Light" ..

Some material to make cushions.  Love the colours.  AND ... the other day while wandering in centro I came upon these day of the dead tiles to scatter amongst the wall tiles in the bano.  YEAH!  So much fun.







"Every person, in the course of his life, must build --- starting with the natural territory of his own self -- a work, an opus, into which something enters from all the elements of the earth.  He makes his own soul throughout all his earthly days: and at the same time he collaborates in another work, in another opus, which infinitely transcends, while at the same time it narrowly determines, the perspectives of his individual achievement: the completing of the world."  ~ Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, The Divine Milieu

November 20, 2010

* Mi Casa

Finished!
The outside lights still have to go up and the blue around Our Lady has to be changed.  Other than that, the outside is complete for now.  I will probably, at sometime in the future paint the name of the house somewhere, and of course put the street number on.  I'm still not sure what that's going to be. 

"It takes half your life before you discover life is a do-it-yourself project."  ~ Napoleon Hill

November 19, 2010

* 3:30 am ... Quinta de Luz

It's one of those sleepless nights.  Thought I might as well make a few notes on my blog and let you know what I've been up to.

The street front of the house is painted. The trim still has to be done, however, it was started today.  Are you ready???

I painted it orange just for you.  So when you come down the street, there will be no confusion as to where you are going!
First coat of trim.
Tiling the bathroom has begun.  I think I'm feeding Maestro Jose toooo much cake. 
I ended up hanging the mirror beside my bed. 
I've been busy looking for living accommodations for my friends who are spending a couple of months in SMA after Christmas.  It's been really interested to see what's out there.  Havin' fun doing that.

Yesterday, I purchased paint samples for the outside of the house and the jardin walls.  Just can't see the sense in painting it all and not liking the colour.  Today, when the trim is finished on the front of the house, perhaps Pedro (the painter) will do some samples for me so I can decide.

My art teacher has taken a holiday to Brazil.  I know, how dare she!  That's what I said to her.  It didn't help .. she went anyway.  Not sure what I'm going to work on while she's away.  I'm craving some assemblage or collage or mixed media or intuitive painting or art journaling ... it will come to me.  "Sunday Afternoon" is not complete.  I have had her head on and off so many times, she's suffering post traumatic stress.  I think I might need a break from it.  Sometimes when I go back to something it all becomes clear.  I think I've finally got her head the way I want it ...   The painting still needs a lot of work.  It's very challenging getting the look in your head, out onto your canvas without models.

Sunday Afternoon.  Oil on canvas.  Work in progrsss
 Habibi needs a bath yet again.  It seems a next to impossible job to keep him looking lovely at least while they are still building.  This week he has turned a light pink colour again because they have been sawing bricks for the terrace.  Saturday, if it's warm will be bath day.

Nothing more to report today.  I'm off for lunch with a friend.  Also another possible accommodation to view for my friends.

"The problem is never how to get new, innovative thoughts into your mind, but how to get old ones out.  Every mind is a building filed with archaic furniture.  Clean out a corner of your mind and creativity will fill it instantly." ~ Dee Hock

November 18, 2010

* I can't think of a title ...

Woke up this mornin', you were on my m i n d ....  no, not really!  It's 3:30 am, I am wide awake and that old song just popped into my head.  What can I say ...

Spent most of my day in Centro.  I had every intention of doing a photo walk ... somehow I simply got distracted .. wandering the streets and marveling at the fact I moved to Mexico.  Sometimes, just for that short blip, that half a second - it can seem surreal.

I devoted some of my time checking out and really taking note of what is here ... in the creative department.  As you know, I can't pop into a store and buy alcohol ink, rubber stamps, or german scrap.  Even a good glue is difficult to find.  I've begun a search for alternatives.  What is already here that I could create with.  Ribbon is plentiful and reasonably priced.  A fabric store will have at least 20 rows of ribbon.  It boggles the mind.  Colourful miniatures, brightly coloured wooden tops and toys, lots of paper mache figures from big to small, masks, nichos, palm weavings etc. etc. I did take note today.  It has not registered in my brain what I can create with all of this 'stuff' yet.  I hope inspiration comes.

I did purchase some yards of colourful ribbon.  A while ago I purchased a huge bag of milagros with holes in them for hanging.  Ribbon and milagros with holes ... hmmm ... possibilities.  Don't know quite what yet.  I'll keep you posted.

After walking the town, I found myself at the market, quite tired.  I sat down and ordered a jugo de naranja grande.  Oranges are in season now.  I can purchase a 50 lb. bag for very little.  Tempting ...  I'd have to have a screwdriver party!  So I sat in the market, at the juice stand thoroughly enjoying myself and watching the world go by.
This is me sitting at the juice bar with my jugo naranja grande
Pinata anyone?

Bolsa perhaps?
Oil cloth is a hot commodity here.  Aprons, baby bibs, purses and bags of all shapes and sizes.  Yes, it's the same oil cloth our mothers put on our picnic table, but wow, the colours!  Very inspiring.  I've been wanting a tablecloth for the terrace.  Honestly, it was hard to choose.  I'm delighted with what I got.


Much more inviting to sit at now.  Sangria anyone? 
The weather has cooled considerable of late.  Autumn and winter are falling upon San Miguel.  I experienced last winter ... believe me not bad, however I do need something to keep me warm.  My heavy wool coat from Canada is tooooo hot, so I've been looking for a light woolen poncho type garment.  The one I got today is pure wool, very light and comfortable.  I can take it off, fold it in half and I have a lovely shawl.

trying to take a photo of myself ... well, it's the best I could do on short notice.

A great aztec design around the neckline. 

That was my day.  I came home and hung that heavy mirror I bought in Delores.  I've got to say pounding a nail into cement is a little different that pounding one into drywall.  I made a huge hole in the wall today.  Chucks of cement fell out of the wall as I drove the cement nail in deep enough to hold the mirror.  Its disconcerting ... half the wall is missing behind the mirror now! 

Tomorrow I am going to view accommodations for rent which my friends from the states may be interested in.  I've already viewed one.  Let's just say it was less than acceptable.  It's kind of fun looking at different places.  

Learn to get in touch with the silence within yourself, and know that everything in life has purpose. There are no mistakes, no coincidences, all events are blessings given to us to learn from.   ~ Elisabeth Kubler Ross

November 16, 2010

* Delores Hidalgo

You may remember, Delores Hidalgo is that Toddling Talavera Town.  It is time to purchase a sink for the upstairs bano, replace some dishes which had been chipped and broken, and take a good look around for a mas grande pot for a corner of my living space.  I seem to be craving a huge green tree type something or other.

We left about 10:00 am.  It's not a long drive.  Pleasant to be on the open road, even if I'm not driving.  I miss the little road trips.  I know of a place which has piles of 'rusty old stuff' at the back, and we stopped there first.  I am getting to know the gentleman who owns the place and I was greeted warmly when I stepped from the car.  Hola, Buenes Dias, Donnita, he said, taking my hand in a warm handshake.  I attempted to explain I wanted to head straight for his junque pile.  He looked at me oddly, but took me there.  I began to pick out a few pieces.  I would pick a piece, then he would rummage through the pile trying to find the other pieces to 'make it complete'.  Try and explain to someone you don't want it complete ... you just want bits and pieces.  He finally gave up trying to find all the pieces to the door lock I picked up, and the sad iron I had in my hand.  I came away with a great little selection of 'who knows what I will do with it stuff', and was happy as a little clam.  Xaviar and I said our goodbyes as he walked me to the car.  I will be back I promised him.  He does have some lovely old furniture.

Our next stop was to be the telavera shop JMB.  My driver got lost and we found ourselves almost out in the country.  I suggested he call the shop for directions.  As he was doing that I got out of the car and took a little walk.  About half a block down was a small, jam packed furniture shop ... some old pieces and some new hand carved pieces.  Of course, I dove straight in.  There was a king size head board there .. all hand carved.  Massive and exquisite.  I admired and sailed on by.  My Chacita Casita ... ha ha.  I wouldn't be able to get it in the door.  When I reached the dark back corner my heart took a little leap.  There was a lovely old bathroom mirror hanging on the wall.  Hand carved, with remnants of paint left on it, I immediately fell in love.  I asked Senora the price.  She quoted me.  I offered less.  She called her husband.  He came over.  We joked and laughed and bartered (thank you Papa for teaching me those great bartering skills).  I brought the mirror home for about $40.00.  I'm in love.  I think it's too big for the bano.  I will take it upstairs tomorrow and try it.  Not sure where it's going to end up.

We found JMB, I replaced my dishes and chose this sink.

We drove around town looking for a large pot, but couldn't find one I liked.  Half the fun is the hunt, lets face it.  On the way home I was starving.  I asked Ruben if he could find a gordito stand ... we did.  They are sooooo good.  The dough is made with corn.  It's rolled into a ball, patted back and forth in the hands, and put on a griddle to cook.  When it's done, it's like a pita bread ... it splits open and you can fill it up with all the good things in the pots.  I asked Senora if I could take photographs and she said yes.  She took one of the gordita balls and put it into an old wooden tortilla maker.  Wham ... a flat, thin tortilla.  She filled that up with different things so I could taste the difference.  YUM.  And ... what a lovely experience.  
Senora asked me why I was taking the photographs.  I told her, because I thought she was beautiful.  She smiled.  I think the entire process is beautiful.  The sound of the dough being patted back and forth between her hands .... so basic ... so primitive ... so meditative ... so far away from MacDonalds!

On the highway back to SMA there is a place called San Gabriel ... a shop ... but huge.  The Costco Talavera shop.  I saw some candle holders there a long time ago, and have looked at them since.  I have not been able to find them anywhere else.  I wanted on for the middle of the coffee table.  When you remove the candle and take the hurricane part out, you can use it for flowers.  It's a lovely item to have because it's low, and very versatile.
In a pinch I could use it for Sangria!  lol
"I just took the energy it would take to pout and wrote some blues."  ~ Duke Ellington
Love this Quote.  Made me think:  Am I pouting about anything?  Wasting all that good energy?

November 14, 2010

Decorating "By the Light"

Colour!  Glorious, profound, exquisite, puzzling, illusive, magical COLOUR!

I have had the colour pallet from Sherwin Williams for a week now.  Playing, simply playing with colour.  It's so much fun and I find bright colours very inspiring.  When I decorate the living space in my home, bright is not usually my first choice.  I like peaceful pallets which I can sink into and relax.

By The Light is going to be a big step out of the box for me.  I can do ANYTHING I I can imagine ...  nothing is beyond my imagination ... something I have always dreamed of, but never had a space to experiment in.

Here's the pallet.  Drapes are lime green.  I already have the material.  Ceiling will be the lime green sample.  Two walls, the fireplace wall and the entrance wall from the house will be bright orange.  The two end walls will be the pink.  A shot of cobalt blue will exist here and there.  The tiles on the fireplace and in the bano are cobalt.  I will throw in small touches of purple and turquoise in cushions and other fabric pieces.  Wish me luck ... hope I love it.

I have also purchased furniture!  Yes, already.  Some folks in San Miguel are moving and needed to sell a couple of pieces.  For my art table I bought their antique rustic dining table with one drawer.  It's big and beautiful.  Probably six people can sit around it to create .... I'm thinking a Nicho Party to warm up the table.  Oil cloth is wonderful and colourful here.  I will find just the right piece and cover the entire table.  That way I can spill and drip all I want.

They also had a leather love seat which is coming over to By The Light.  The leather is well worn and absolutely gorgeous.  It's a light brown.  With wild cushions and a throw, sitting in front of the fireplace will be so comfortable!

Here's the story board I've begun for the colour palette.  Let me know what you think.  I'm so open to great ideas.  Thanks.

Well?
 "The entire world, as we experience it visually, comes to us through the mystic realm of colour."  ~ Hand Hofmann

November 13, 2010

* Domestic Matters ..

 I thought you might find it interesting to see a little more of 'the hood'.  From time to time as opportunity presents itself, I will take photos so you can get a little feel for where I live. Many Mexicans are very shy about having their photographs taken by a stranger.  I know many of you will say, better her than me.  I couldn't do it.  Personally, I am in love.  As I have said before, it's not for everyone.

As I walk down the street in the morning to do my daily rounds, not one person passes me without a smile and a greeting.  Most people in the neighbourhood know each other.  I find people are happy here.  They certainly don't have the big houses, the cottage at the lake, and the yacht.  They have enough to buy good food.  Huge bags of fresh vegetables, beans, rice, lentils, and a good piece of meat from the carnicero.  I would say most people in this area have a car.  Their houses are basic and sturdy.  Children attend school.  Houses are single family dwellings which would have a courtyard and outside space within their walls.  That means trees, plants, and in all likelyhood some fresh fruit within their walls.  On most streets here there is someone who sells fresh fruit and juice.  In the morning you can stroll a block and have a huge glass of orange juice for a few pesos.  Large containers of fresh, peeled, cut up fruit awaits you.  You can buy four tamales and a hot drink for breakfast for under a dollar.  Last week I walked over to a friends, past the man who has a stand in front of his house.  I bought a large container of watermelon.  A huge container of jamica (a vegetable perhaps related to turnip.  Milder, crisper and whiter flesh).  Fresh peeled oranges on sticks.  Everything was sprinkled with fresh squeezed lime while I watched and sprinkled with as much chili as I could cope with.  This is street food lunch for two.  Altogether it was about .75 cents.

This morning I took some photos of the tienda I shop at for my daily needs.  They have absolutely everything you could ask for in the basic department and it's about three houses down the street from where I live.  It is run by a family.  They work hard.  The shop opens at 7:00 am and closes at 9:00 pm.  Sometimes there is a lineup out the door.  If the shop is closed and your desperately in need something, just knock on the door and they will open it for you.  They live in the back and upstairs.  This morning I asked for permission to take some photographs.  Senora looked shocked and giggled.  Probably the first time that has happened.

I've been to the shop three times today.  This morning to shop for dinner, as I had company today.  This afternoon to purchase a huge bottle of coke for 'my men'.  And, later this afternoon while I was preparing for dinner and realized I needed ONE egg.  Here's some photos.

Just so you get an idea of location, this photo was taken as I was walking home from the butcher.  The white house you can see a little of on the far right of the photo is mine.  The family owns this building.  In their private quarters there is a nice courtyard, and on the roof at the back there is a terrace which has about the same view I would have.
Senora and some of her customers, all giggling because a crazy gringo wants to take photos of what to them is a very ordinary place.  I keep forgetting Senora's name.  Her husband's name is Danny.  They have three daughters, two of whom are still in school.  The older daughter works with them in the tienda, constantly restocking shelves and keeping things tidy.  On the counter lies some the food I am buying.  You can see the huge container of raw honey.  Oh My!  It's delicious.  I have a little in my tea.
Everything I need for daily living is here.  At the back I can purchase paper, scribblers, tissue paper, pens and pencils.  There is beer in the fridge.  Today I purchased one egg.  I have seen people buy one cookie, one cigarette, one piece of ham or a single scoop of dog food.  The vegetables and fruit are fresh.  Shampoo, soap, paper goods, hand lotion and bottled water are there somewhere.  It's amazing what I can find and discover. 
Their oldest daughter on the left restocks and tidies the shelves, while a customer shops beside her.
This is an integral part of my world.  I love it.  It's intimate.  Hope you enjoyed the little tour.

"I don't want to get to the end of my life and find that I lived just the length of it. I want to have lived the width of it as well."  ~ Diane Ackerman

November 12, 2010

* This , that and the other thing ...

My heart dictated flowers were needed for the house.  What is it about flowers.  The colours?  Nature at it's best?  The aliveness?  The calm energy they give off?  Who knows ... a combination of many things I'm sure.  Anyway, I wanted to share them with you.



Today, while at an appointment in a more obscure part of town, I fell upon a junque shop!  Yes, I must say, old patterns have surfaced.  It's just part of me ... I love junque!  With the studio being slowly on it's way to completion, I find myself pondering it's decoration.  I want to have FUN there.  I want to feel a sense of PLAY in the room when I walk in.  Ever since I can't remember when, I've wanted a Gypsy Wagon.  If I had a Gypsy Wagon I would paint it in incredibly wild and wonderful colours.  Odd objects would appear everywhere.  I've decided to transfer these longings into "By the Light".  Colours I have chosen are as follows.  Ceiling:  Lime Green.  Two walls:  Vibrant Pink.  Two Walls:  Incredibly Rich Orange.  Are you shocked yet?  I'm so excited.  This is going to be fun.

Now, I am on the look out for 'reasonably priced' things to decorate.  Today, at the little junque shop, I found the following.

This gorgeous old light, which would have hung from an old colonial ceiling, will grace my terrace.  I will fill it with candles.  It was $8.00
This is an old piece of punched tin.  It will be fun to paint it (bright colours of course) and grace it with who knows what ... a photograph, a painting, inspiring words, a mirror ... it will evolve as I go.

A couple of wrought iron frames will come in handy. 

This was once part of a street lamp.  Picture re painted, bolted onto the wall in an appropriate place with a great big fat pillar candle in it.
Brackets to hand just about anything.

I also purchased a small four leg foot stool.  Low to the ground with curvy legs, it will be my step up to the bed.  I need to reupholster it.

Lastly, a great box of junque.  Ripe for making out of the box art pieces.
While I hunted for fun stuff for the studio, progress was being made at Quinta de Luz.  When I came home the electrical in the Jardin was completed.  Now all I have to do is flip a switch on my terrace to turn the pump in the fountain on, the light in the fountain, and the lights under the tree.  Outdoor plugs have also been installed to add outdoor lights.

Is this not FUN?  The sound of the water is very gentle and soothing.  Beautiful at night.
There is also a plug in at the base of the tree.  I will be able to string lights up into its branches.
Painting of the casa street wall will begin tomorrow or Monday.  The colour I have chosen is called "Heavy Orange".  I hope I love in when it's finished.  Around the gates, and windows will paint trim of another colour.  I still have to choose that ... have to see the orange on the wall first.

"The ache for home lives in all of us, the safe place where we can go as we are and not be questioned."  ~ Maya Angelou