Thankfully…

…the hectic pace has begun to slow–and just in time for the holidays (Haha!)!

Between nighttime leg cramps and a number of ocular migraines, a good night’s sleep has been a tough goal, and even though I woke today at 2:00 AM, I felt rested for a change…perhaps the culprit was the three-hour ‘short’ nap I had yesterday afternoon?

But…the closets are freshly painted and totally reorganized, almost all the photos are framed and ready to hang, the hardwood floors have been washed down with Murphy’s Oil Soap and treated with OrangeGlo and I had a wonderful morning baking Ginger Snaps, then shopped this afternoon, and just finished a very satisfying, healthy dinner (steamed salmon, potato slices baked with onion and a drizzle of olive oil, and fresh broccoli).

I can finally show you more Autumn brilliance!

These were taken last weekend and sadly, due to extremely windy conditioned over the past three or four days, most of these trees are nearly bare and grossly faded–but, they’re still beautiful to me!

Autumn Brilliance-1

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Autumn Brilliance-3

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Autumn Brilliance-6

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Autumn Brilliance-5

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Autumn Brilliance-6

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Autumn Brilliance-4

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???????????????????????????????This last image is my favorite, which I’ll take to the printer and have it done quite large!

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Though I may not post every single day, be assured that I am continuing to shoot and process–it’s just that everything has taken so much longer to accomplish that I felt exhausted continually.

I checked out the DVD “Chicago” from the library today, and will be watching it (again!) tonight.

Back in 1978, a dear friend took me to see it here in Chicago with the original Broadway cast (Jerry Ohrbach,Gwen Verdon and Chita Rivera) at the old Blackstone Theatre, and I fell in love with the storyline and the music.

Hope you all will have as enjoyable evening as I will!

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Autumn in the wet

Just a quickie here, as I’ve been so very busy and not feeling quite up to par this past week.

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Autumn Wet-3 WM

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Autumn Wet-4 WM

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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!)

It’s been a long, hard week…

…because I am still painting walls, thanks to the building management who provided the cheapest, chalkiest paint…which does not contain enough Titanium Dioxide to cover very well!

Both the bath and kitchen will require a second coat, while most of the other walls have taken FOUR coats, in addition to the original stain-blocker coat, and the ceiling in the bed area needs a second coat for sure, and hopefully not a third…I really expect to be finished, cleaned up and redecorated by Hallowe’en!

It hasn’t been as easy as it was in the ‘olden days’, when I could climb for hours or paint a room’s ceiling in fifteen minutes (including the cutting in!)…nor can I even climb every day, for that matter.

It’s been long, but (hint-hint to the building management!) could have been accomplished in one, maybe two, coats had the paint been of a better quality, but alas, they are known to be ‘penny-wise and pound-foolish’!

In between the painting, I managed to take hundreds of images of the demolition of the Shambhala Meditation Center next door…which, of course, I haven’t been able to do anything with just yet.

However, I can show you yesterday’s pix, taken at the end of a very long workday for the meticulous, hard-working crew involved.

I’ll call this “The Sham-Gone” series!

The day had been spent sifting and sorting, as huge dump trucks came and went with load after load of broken-up concrete and very sandy subsoil (this area actually used to be Lake Michigan before it was filled in many decades ago--hence, the sand...

The day had been spent sifting and sorting, as huge dump trucks came and went with load after load of broken-up concrete, various metals and extremely sandy subsoil (this area actually used to be Lake Michigan before it was filled in many decades ago–hence, the sand…

...and more sand...

…and more sand…

...and, even more sand!).

…and, even more sand!).

The crew is finished for now, so I guess the next crew will be taking down the trees.

The crew is finished for now, so I guess the next crew will be taking down the trees.

Though that may seem sad to some of you, it’s actually a good thing, as the owners of Shambhala were not very wise stewards, especially in maintaining the trees.

Lots of broken limbs and dead/dying stock littered this property…and a number of trees were allowed to sprout naturally, but were never regularly pruned to allow them space to grow well.

In addition, most of the trees had very shallow roots due to the sandy subsoil, so that as they aged, the potential for crashing down became greater with each passing year.

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I had spoken several times with the crew (mainly the shovel operator and his two assistants), telling them I thought they had done an excellent job.

Though they were all a little embarrassed at being praised, one assistant piped up,

“Well, at least somebody appreciates what we do!”

Autumn along Morse Avenue

We’re only two and a half weeks into Autumn, so there’s not much color here in the northernmost neighborhood of Chicago, but there certainly is beauty, as proven during a short walk to the grocer’s on Tuesday.

A burst of gold was the only major color change...as the weeks move on, there'll certainly be more!

A burst of gold was the only major color change…as the weeks move on, there’ll certainly be more!

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Smallish white Roses...

Smallish white Roses

...continue to blossom in the parkways...

…continue to blossom in the parkways…

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...interspersed with the pinks.

…interspersed with the pinks.

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..and bounteous Oak leaves displayed their undersides in a breezy south wind.

..and bounteous Oak leaves displayed their undersides in a breezy south wind.

The weather has been perfect this week, with warm, sunny days followed by crisper nights.

Oh, how I wish this could go on forever!

At the Emil Bach House parkway…

Leaves on the trees are yellowing...

…leaves on the trees are yellowing…

...the daisies lose color and petals in stages...

…the Daisies lose color and petals in stages…

...and the Hostas fade gracefully.

…and the Hostas fade gracefully.

As for the renovation of the 1915 Frank Lloyd Wright-designed house, the new layer of stucco is being applied, and I’m certain there is work going on inside as well.

Bach House Stucco-1

A closer look:

Bach House Stucco-2

Out with the old!

After a harrowing, hot weekend, the power supply in my desktop was finally replaced late yesterday afternoon…HOORAH!

Thanks to “Kris at Quest” (located on the first floor of my building), everything is running smoothly and very quietly.

I was offered the old power supply and took it, merely to photograph, and shall recycle it promptly.

'Dead' Power Supply-Front

‘Dead’ Power Supply–Front

 

'Dead' Power Supply-Back

‘Dead’ Power Supply–Back

The black ‘thing’ at the top of the photos is another exhaust fan, which Kris also replaced, as that was what was causing a whining sound which worsened as time went on.

I urge everyone to clean the inside of your computers regularly, thoroughly and carefully by vacuuming out all vents and, if it’s a desktop model, take off the side or top, and carefully (again) clean out all the dust and dirt from the inside.

Your computer will thank you for that!

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First, I’d like to thank all of you for your patience, as it became too difficult and time-consuming to post anything on my poor old laptop, which, as I told you earlier, was prone to ‘falling asleep’…the blinking on and off became very irritating, so irritating that I couldn’t really get into my e-mail to even look at your posts and comment on your work.

I promise that will be accomplished over the next few (very HOT!  Low 90s F.–near mid-30s C.) days, as I sit drinking icy cold herbal teas with a huge fan blowing on me!

Here are some images I took late last week…boy, do I have a lot of catching up to do!

While walking a new route from the hardware store on Friday, the lighting was perfect for some truly ‘chiaroscuro’ shots.

Chiaroscuro on Ashland Avenue, the first

Chiaroscuro on Ashland Avenue, the first

 

Chiaroscuro on Ashland Avenue, the second

Chiaroscuro on Ashland Avenue, the second

Fallen Mulberries litter the walkway beside Leone Beach Park.

 

Mulberries and Shadows, the first

Mulberries and Shadows, the first

 

Mulberries and Shadows, the second

Mulberries and Shadows, the second

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For those of you in heat-devastated areas, please stay cool and drink lots of water…and for those of you where it’s Winter now, please keep warm and cozy!