Thursday, May 12

“This beauty just keeps shaking me…”

To borrow a line from an Indigo Girls song:  “Everywhere I turn, oh, all the beauty just keeps shakin’ me…”

Our veranda, just now…

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Friday, April 29

Rivershore poppies, a la Languedoc

Roquebrun.River.PoppiesSpringtime in the south of France reliably brings carpets of wild red poppies.  Photo taken from the shore of the Orb River, looking north up into ‘our’ little village of Roquebrun, France, Languedoc.

Wednesday, April 20

O darling veranda

DSC_0184aThrough the screen door, from the bedroom (facing south-southeast)

DSC_0188The nun’s bed, for those hot Sonoran nights (facing southwest)

DSC_0190A little mood lighting (facing west)

DSC_0189Door to kitchen on left, door to hall that leads to studio and Ken’s bathroom on right (facing northwest)

DSC_0182aTaken standing with my back to the kitchen door (facing east)

DSC_0185aLooking south-southeast

Tuesday, April 19

“Everywhere we are is Sacred Space…*”

DSC_0179Last night’s sunset

DSC_0181This morning’s sunlight

DSC_0183aFountain view laptop perch (bedroom)

“Everywhere we are is Sacred Space…”
--Marty Weiner (1943-April 17, 2011)

Roquebrun illuminé

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Our village, Roquebrun (Herault, Languedoc) with its magic apparent.

Friday, April 15

Apricot Bath

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I have deemed this bathroom for BATHS only.  Literally. This way, a soothing bath is only a few moments away at any given time.  No shower grime to clean, no hard-water-stained shower curtains to wrestle.  Just a sweet cottony cascade and a long sheer swag, a decadent collection of bath salts ever at the ready!

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My friend Peggy gave me this flying bare-breasted Balinese goddess many years ago.  She said this is how she felt after one of my massages!

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Framed island art from Etsy:DSC_0151

Here’s the view out the window:DSC_0155
On the left, thrift store mirror.  Oh so French.  Jewelry hang-y thing that I created by re-purposing a shelf from a broken plant stand.  Formerly-ugly bookcase painted bright white…DSC_0147

Photo below taken while standing in bathroom looking toward hall (the hall that leads from the kitchen to the living room). DSC_0152
Framed art from one of my oldest and dearest friends, Carrie Tasman, Tasman StudioFramed quote from Mary Anne Radmacher-Hershey.  Mini-painting of a brown Labrador in the bathtub by Angie Ketelhut.
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Little window in hall above looks out on the covered porch, fountain and cobblestone courtyard (click to enlarge):

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Thursday, April 14

Fountain-side alcove sleeping, via shaded south colonnade

Our walls are silky, sanguine, incandescent ‘Magic Hour’.  Our sleeping alcove is matte ‘Soul Sister’. Both are luminous full-spectrum paints from Citron Paint here in Tucson.

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Here’s the description of ‘Magic Hour’ from Citron’s website:

As the sun slides down in Tucson, the light gets sideways and golden halos transform the desert. Ordinary trees become glowing sculptures and mountains become epic. The drab curtain of the day is parted, and you can glimpse the beauty that's always there. My family calls it magic hour.

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Arched door leads directly out onto the cobblestone courtyard.  Here’s an exterior shot of the covered walkway; the first purple door on the left is the bedroom. the second door is the laundry room.  The entrance to Indiana’s part of the house is down at the very end of the colonnade.  (Colonnade!  I love using that word!)

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That’s Bella, a sweet girl we’re sitting for until the 23rd… her parents are in Hawaii. I’m thinking everyone got a good deal!

Below is a view toward the bedroom door, standing in the kitchen and looking through the covered porch.

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The fountain is almost directly outside this south-facing door!

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This north-facing window looks out onto the Santa  Catalina Mountains – the place where Magic Hour really happens!  We can see the mountains sitting or lying in bed!

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The bedroom is reached either from the colonnade, or internally by going through Ken’s bathroom and this closet-lined hall and arched doorway.DSC_0136

A few other angles of Ken’s bathroom:

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Mountain views from the commode! DSC_0134a

Our Blue Heaven

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A few exterior shots… this is the west side of the estate.  It’s a large, private fenced area that is ours alone.  It will be a perfect place to watch sunsets and have fires, plus it’s a wonderland of smells for Roxy’s many daily patrols.

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This doorway leads into the kitchen.DSC_0114 
I am imagining that Indiana Nelson, our dee-vine Lady of the Manor, chose this particular blue because it nearly matches the rich Cerulean blue of the Sonoran desert sky.

5 N. Sierra Vista Drive.KEY

Click to enlarge. Image above shows which portion of property is ours, highlighted in pale blue.

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Sweet-crazy-happy little kitchen

Some “Ă¯n-progress” photos of our sweet electric-yellow kitchen!  So yellow, it almost vibrates… at first, we thought we’d paint over it, but it has really quite grown on us!

The French doors face due west and are essentially our front door/main entrance. The floor is concrete stained a rich deep earthy brownish-red.

Click any image to enlarge.

In this first photo, the orange hall on the left (with the blue & white floor tile) leads through to the aqua living room.  My bathroom is off the hall – it’s the same orange.  Actually, it’s more of a bright apricot in person.

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This arched door leads to the covered porch.DSC_0118

Here’s the view standing in the kitchen looking out onto the covered porch.  The purple door left of center is our bedroom.DSC_0153a

Here, the doorway in the center of the photo leads to a short hall – more of a passage than a hall -- where the fridge resides.  Oh, and Roxy’s “station” is there, too… dawg food dish, kibble bin, water bowl, hooks for leashes, collars, etc.DSC_0117

We managed to insert this darling little green metal table in just the right spot so that it actually works, even though the layout is essentially a galley and a major arterial through the house.  Enough room for one chair and a wee wrought-iron stool, too.

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Note the absence of a dishwasher and microwave.  Also, no garbage disposal and there is some mysterious short in the fridge that allows the inside lights to work only on, er, every 40th time you open the door.  And having the fridge in the hall makes for an awkward work triangle.  All that being true, the space is magical nonetheless and sings with happiness.

Ken is on a thrift-store hunt for a microwave, but I could easily live without one and hardly miss it.  The only thing I use it for is to warm plates and for the occasional bag of buttery popcorn.

Now, to figure out how to hang the scallop-edged mirror over the stove without marring the masonry-covered adobe walls.  Hmmm…. purple ribbon?

Wednesday, April 13

Aaah… Luxuriating in our new Tucson universe

Even though we are a mere 3/4 of a mile from our old house – and happily dug out from under an avalanche of boxes -- it feels like we are in an entirely different and magical parallel Universe over here on Sierra Vista Drive.  And we are LOVING it!!

Here are some “Before & After” pairings, wild and joyous chaos transforming into Hacienda Bliss.

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Living Room:DSC_0176aDSC_0121

 

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My Studio:DSC_0172aDSC_0127

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I took the Before photos on Day 2 (Friday, April 8) and the After photos today.  As you can see, significant progress has been made!  Going from 2200+ square feet plus a double carport, to a sanely-preparing-for-our-move-to-France 1000 square feet, we of course have a-ways to go.  But I always love seeing others’ journeys – Young House Love and Fibermania, in particular -- as they transform a house into a home, so I’m excited about sharing the steps along the way!  Tomorrow: kitchen, baths & bedroom.