This past Saturday…

…I took a break from all the work and walked up the street to the ArchitectureChicago Open House, a city-wide event.

Of course, my sole architectural interests were a mere block and a half walk away!

The Emil Bach House Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, 1915

The Emil Bach House
Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, 1915

As much as I wanted to see inside, I passed by because there was no waiting line next door at the Cat’s Cradle Bed and Breakfast, another renovation financed a few years back by Col. J.N. Pritzker of Tawani Enterprises, Inc.

The Bach House sure looked great from the outside, though the renovation is not yet 100% complete!

The Bach House sure looked great from the outside, though the renovation is not yet 100% complete!

As I walked up the steps to Cat's Cradle, I looked back and took a shot of the looong line at the Bach House. It was a beautiful Autumn morning, and the plantings at both properties were spectacular! But, I quickly turned, and entered a structure I've been very, very curious about.

As I walked up the steps to Cat’s Cradle, I looked back and took a shot of the loooong line at the Bach House.
It was a beautiful Autumn morning, and the plantings at both properties were spectacular!
But, I quickly turned, and entered a structure I’ve been very, very curious about.

Love this door which I believe is the original from 1919, and knew I'd also love the interior!

LOVE this door which I believe is the original from 1919, and knew I’d also love the interior!

I almost felt as if I had somehow ‘gone back in time’, to a much gentler, more civilized era.

The Architect was a Mr. Newman, who drew much inspiration from FLW, as evidenced by the amount of fine woodworking, original wood flooring...

The architect was a Mr. Newman, who drew much inspiration from Frank Lloyd Wright, as evidenced by the amount of fine woodworking, original wood flooring…

...and decorative touches such as this lovely lamp atop the newel post.

…and decorative touches such as this lovely lamp atop the newel post.

Cat’s Cradle contains five bedrooms, each with the flavor of that bygone time, yet each is technologically up-to-date.

I’ll title them in the sequence I viewed them.

Bedroom #1

Bedroom #1

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Bedroom #2

Bedroom #2

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Bedroom #3

Bedroom #3

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Bedroom #4

Bedroom #4

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Bedroom #5

Bedroom #5

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Because I’ve been so busy in the apartment, painting not only walls but also furniture, and doing some fall cleaning in between, I haven’t gotten around to processing any other images from this wonderful tour.

There’s just one ceiling area to give a third coat, and then only the studio remains…I’ll take my time and do that piecemeal, as it is small and requires a lot of shuffling things back and forth—and I’m pretty ‘pooped’ right now!

I did, however, have a fine chat with one of the Innkeepers, Wayde Cartwright, which was both informative and most enjoyable!

If you plan to visit Chicago on business or vacation, give Wayde or his fellow Innkeeper, Bruce Boyd, a call at 1.773.764.9851, or you can visit www.catscradlechicago.com.

The rates are extremely reasonable, especially when you consider the surroundings and all the amenities provided!

(Yes, that was pretty blatant advertising from me, but if I were visiting, I’d surely love staying here!)

Ornamental Cabbage…

…is quite beauteous in autumnal floral displays, don’t you think?

Orn Cabbage-WM

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It seems to become an even more attractive plant when it is combined with another delightful Autumn tradition: the simple, yet always gorgeous, Chrysanthemum!

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Orn Cabbage and Mums-2-WM

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Orn Cabbage and Mums-1-WM

NOTE:  The above images were processed in Photoshop (TM) utilizing the Watercolor filter overlaid with the Diffuse Glow filter (using pure white as the glow color).

Early Autumn Color

These over six feet high Canna plants reside in two huge pots along an entry walk to an apartment building on Eastlake Terrace here in Rogers Park.

Unlike many Cannas, these produce no evidence of flowers, but each mature leaf is approximately two and a half feet in length, and very impressive.

I found that utilizing the Canvas Texture filter in Photoshop (TM) also enhanced the sumptuous colors–see for yourselves!

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In certain gardens…

…it seems Summer lingers on…

...as Gardenias continue to bud...

…as Gardenias continue to bud…

...and slowly transform...

…and slowly transform…

...into full blossoms, perfuming the air...

…into full, creamy blossoms, perfuming the air…

...while orangey Hibiscus display as singles...

…while orangey Hibiscus display themselves as singles…

...or surprise the gardener as doubles!

…or surprise the gardener as brilliant, showy doubles!

The Last of Summer

How happy I am that this Summer is at an end!

The final moon of Summer, taken last night at 9:12 PM (CDT) from my studio window.

The final moon of Summer, taken last night at 9:12 PM (CDT) from my studio window.

The last sunrise of Summer, taken at 6:33 AM (CDT) this morning, also from my studio window.

The last sunrise of Summer, taken at 6:33 AM (CDT) this morning, also from my studio window.

Autumn…ah, the quiet of Autumn…arrives officially at 9:29 PM (CDT) tonight!

It’s been a horrid Summer for me, what with the invasion of bedbugs which required so much extra labor I never got much of a chance to enjoy relaxing along the shore of Lake Michigan. nor did I get much of a tan.

Every day was work, work, WORK!“think like a bedbug” and caulk and patch every single crack and crevice one could find–only to discover there were severe ‘mistakes’ (shortcuts?) taken by the carpenters who rehabbed this building some years ago, leaving HUGE gaps where moldings did not join walls and floor.

Noise from morning to late afternoon, as the gas company workers dug up streets to replace ancient gas pipes, followed by water department workers who dug up other parts of the street to replace ancient water mains.

Oh, it has been an ugly Summer for me!

I welcome Autumn with the lens cap off, clicking then processing each image, relishing the beauty of the season.

Lte Summer Grasses

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Sunflower Underside

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Fading Hosta-1 Diffuse Glow

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Autumn…so very welcome!

Busy buzzers

There’s a tiny raised bed in Rogers Beach Park up the road, planted by a woman I met two years ago.

I haven’t seen her since, but obviously she’s still tending this small space.

Earlier in the week, I walked up there and found these little guys/gals, humming away and, thankfully, not interested in me at all!

Busy Bees-1

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Busy Bees-3

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Busy Bees-2

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Busy Bees-4

Though the temperatures are still warm…

Fallen Ivy leaves

Fallen Ivy leaves

…Autumn is truly in the air–and in the quality of light.

After catching that chill on Labor Day, I felt really out of sorts health-wise…and the news of the past few days has been even more chilling and very depressing, what with all the ‘war chatter’!

Perhaps a little beauty can brighten our mood?

This is the best macro I've ever gotten of Hibiscus...the light was just right!

This is the best macro I’ve ever gotten of Hibiscus…the light was just right!

Adding the Diffuse Glow filter, using pure white as the glow color, seems to give this deep Pink a much ‘dreamier’ look.

Deep Pink Hibiscus XCU Diffuse Glow

There have been only a few flowers still growing, mostly Marigolds and other annuals…I’ll miss these beautiful Hibiscus, but of course, I’ll always have the images!

It occurred to me the other day…

…while walking to the grocer’s, that I hadn’t kept you informed of the progress in the renovation of the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Emil Bach House here on Sheridan Road in the Rogers Park neighborhood of Chicago.

The west and south facades

The west and south facades

Lots of building supplies clutter the front yard, and the scaffolding remains while the fascias are being strip-sanded and repainted, and the walls are being prepared for the application of a new layer of stucco.

The west facade

The west facade

A pile of rubble next to an already-full Dumpster is all that remains of the old roof–I don’t know if this was the original.

Mr. Wright did have a reputation for creating leaky roofs, such as those at the Johnson Wax Center in Racine, Wisconsin, and at the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

The front Tulip garden

The front Tulip Garden

I’m not certain if the fabulous Tulip Garden will be brought back, but the garden will be smaller with the addition of about six feet of sod laid as a buffer between bushes and the rich-looking soil.

The deck and rear entryway

The deck and rear entryway

The former sunroom walls have been removed to expose the original deck, which at the time of construction (1915) overlooked the shore of Lake Michigan.

Sadly, the lake was filled in, and the rear of the Bach House is now a half-block west of the shoreline.

The backyard

The backyard

This was a complete and beautiful surprise!

A curving hand-laid stone pathway now surrounds a short retaining wall and flower beds.

This area was originally several feet high and quite ‘wild-looking’.

The structure on the right (a guest house?) is not original to the property–it was built, if I correctly recall, in 2008 and is attached to the two-car garage, which I also think is not original.

The building permit

The building permit

It’s posted on the temporary cyclone fence at the alleyway, and gives you a pretty good idea of what is being added/renovated By Tawani Enterprises, Inc., which is headed by billionaire J. N. Pritzker.

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Tawani Enterprises also has bought the parking lot just north of my own building and the Shambhala Meditation Center just north of that.
Beginning October 1st, this building will be demolished--I don't look forward to the noise and dust right outside my living area window!

Beginning October 1st, this building will be demolished–I don’t look forward to the noise and dust right outside my living area window!

The corner will supposedly look something like this after construction of the Sheridan-Sherwin Parking Structure...except that this rendering is in very forced perspective--the length of the Sheridan Road footage is only about 160 feet +/-!

The corner will supposedly look something like this after construction of the four-story Sheridan-Sherwin Parking Structure…except that this rendering is in very forced perspective–the length of the Sheridan Road footage is only about 160 feet +/-!

That’s my building sticking up behind the structure–I hope I don’t lose my view !

Meterological Autumn…

…is just a week away, so I thought I’d show you some of the food neighbors have grown in their small plots in the community garden.

A walkway between the raised beds

A walkway between the raised beds

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Iron-laden Swiss Chard

Iron-laden Swiss Chard

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Purple Cabbages, coming along nicely

Purple Cabbages, coming along nicely

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Fresh Dill, to add to a potato salad for a nice lift

Fresh Dill, to add to a potato salad for a nice lift

Physalis philadelphica, or Tomatillo, is a great addition to Salsa Verde

Physalis philadelphica, better known as Tomatillo, is a great addition to Salsa Verde

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Cheery Cherry Tomatoes...I almost wanted to pick the ripest and pop it in my mouth, but I did not--I didn't grow it!

Cheery Cherry Tomatoes…I almost wanted to pick the ripest and pop it in my mouth, but I did not–I didn’t grow it!

Don't know about this...it IS a Tomato, perhaps a newer variety?

Don’t know about this…it IS a Tomato, perhaps a newer variety?

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Small Acorn Squash...they'll be ready to pick in about two weeks

Small Acorn Squash…they’ll be ready to pick in about two weeks

And lastly, at the far end of the garden…

...tiny Crabapples are ripening, just waiting to be pickled and served for Thanksgiving dinner!

…tiny Crabapples are ripening, just waiting to be pickled and served for Thanksgiving dinner!

One huge plus at this location:  There is a water tap, so the gardeners do not have to rely on Mother Nature, who didn’t provide quite enough rain this Summer!

There’ll be some great, fresh meals in a number of homes in the neighborhood–the gardeners’ hard work certainly paid off!

 

After quite a bit of research…

…I finally discovered what these beauties are!

Hydrangea paniculata–Pink Diamond

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Hydrangea paniculata-Pink Diamond-2

So very delicate-looking, yet quite hardy!