This was a major project that took much of an afternoon. I love Vinca but only when it grows where I want it to grow. This is what happens when it runs unchecked for 18 months or so. What I am not showing is the bottom edge of this mass of plants that had expanded into the oak grove. That took another coupe of hours to clean up. But all is good – and there are only 3 or 4 more paths that need my attention before the crop of leaves start falling.
We have short paths that run up and down the changing elevations in our yard that can become quickly overgrown if they are not kept up. Here are some before and after photos of one of the short ones that runs off our driveway. It was almost completely hidden by the Oregon grape that loves to grow when unchecked but 30-45 minutes of clearing produced a useable – and I think interesting – path and a full 30 gallon trash can.
This is the view from East side of our loft looking towards the front door. The plant you can see on the left is about 16 feet high and has been with us for about 25 years. The philodendron that is peeking out from behind the ceiling fixture was in the house when we bought it in 1983! It stretches about 10 feet into the room. You can see that we love green plants both inside and outside our house.
It is a good thing that we have a large house and a big yard because we can not seem to stop buying all kinds of art. Some are souvenirs that we have picked up on our missions but most are an accumulation of things that we have seen and just could not pass up buying. It can happen at any time and any where. Some have monetary value but most just have memory value. I decided to post some of the art you will find if you ever come to visit us and wandered through the house and yard. But this is just a sample – you will have to come see us if you want to see all of it! We give guided tours with commentary!
The project started with my taking a picture of a display of giraffes that we have collected on our missions. The big one came from my aunt’s home, the smaller one to its left is from Indonesia, The tall bright colored one was bought in Joburg, the smaller one was a gift from sister Mann, and the one nibbling on it’s leg was bought while we were serving in Richard’s Bay. The picture of the family of giraffes was bought in Potch. The bell is one of many you will see here and was a gift to me from Mary.
It is a good thing we have big walls because these two paintings are quite large. The one on the left is by a fairly famous artist and the one on the right is by a teacher at the University of Utah. Both were bought because we fell in love with them. Two of our many such purchases. Table in front of the Rosamond has our collection of artificial apples. We have picked them up all over the world. The big dark red one on the extreme left is the latest addition and was bought in South Africa on our mission. The ceramic unusually made up lady sculpture has been part of the family for over 30 years – her name is Rose.
The picture on the left includes a large painting from Indonesia, a mask from South Africa, a small painting from Florida and a black and white print from Bali. I need to put something up from our last mission. For some reason we are big on bells and chimes. The bell by our fireplace came from exotic CostCo – and I have a hard time keeping the top supports straight. If you look past the edge of the fireplace you can see two masks from Indonesia.
Almost everyone talks about having a door bell but most of them have electrical chimes. We have a real doorbell but few people use it. I decorated it for Christmas 2013 and forgot to take it down. It will be right in season in just a couple of months. Many know and have seen gargoyles, some know that their purpose was to scare away evil spirits, but hardly anyone has one on their front door – we do. It was made for us by a student from the Y – he also did Rose.
Next to our front door we have these four friendly faces from Indonesia- or was it Africa? They are door knockers and you can see the stick to beat them with hanging from the second one from the left. As you look down our drive way – it is 150 or so feet long – from our front porch you will see one of our kinetic wind sculptures that we bought at a fair in Salt Lake. It takes a good wind to get all the levels moving but when they do it is poetry in motion.
As you walk in our front door you are met by ‘Charlie’ – what I call him ‘Art’ as Cindy calls him or ‘Gypsy Undertaker at the Watch Tower’ which his official title. What ever you may call him he is about 6 feet tall on his pedestal, made of fired ceramics with different textural feeling. He has a very bad overbite and four feet – two where they should be and two on the inside of his thighs. Outside near the front door is another sculpture by Dennis Deegan. It is a bronze and is called Lukan Post – in honor of his son. When you come to visit we will tell you about Luke’s special feature – besides his winged head that is.
Wander through the paths in our yard – there are a number of them and you will see sculptures, chimes – about a dozen or so large cast bells, and fish of all sizes. I had not noticed how many fish in different materials we had until I took these pictures…they turn up all over the yard.
Bells, Chimes – we love it when the wind blows and secret places with interesting displays can be found through out the yard.
Just off our lower patio you will find a strange sculpture that I have never figured out what it is supposed to represent and the artist was no help at all. It kind of looks like a weird angel with tattered wings. When you see it you can give me your take. Another CostCo purchase was this wonderful Torren copper bird feeder. When we get settled in a little more I will start feeding the birds again. The small triangle bell in the lower left of the photo was a gift for Mary – it needs a little work.
Big noisy bells are the best. These two were made from old gas cylinders by a couple of true artists. The North part of our yard is steep and has three terraces. You can see some two more of our kinetic wind sculptures and a lot of plants that need pruning.
The Summer before we left on our last mission we went to the arts fair in Salt Lake and bought this interesting sculpture o five different size metal disks on rods. I put them in a planter we had and when I left there was a solar light in the middle but seems to have got lost along the way. One final wind chime .
This is what you see standing at the NorthWest corner of our garage. In summer it is beautiful and green while in the winter it is beautiful and white. This is the head of a sculpture that got destroyed when the folks cleaning up some of our trees dropped a big limb right on top of it. Some day I hope to get the artist to re-connect everything.
Three CostCo birds are being carefully watched by the cat behind the bush. My son Tom gave me the center metal sculpture and I cleaned it up and painted it black, blue and brown. The fish were a close out we bought somewhere, the really ugly frog comes from Oregon while the snail – can you see him – came from another trip to the SL art fair. We really should stay away from that show.
These two tree gnomes protect a part of of our yard. One of our grandsons would not come up the driveway if they were around – he has grown out of that so they can now check out each of our visitors as they approach our door. This is the scene looking straight out our front door lots going on and that is how we like it. That is the end of this abbreviated tour – hope you will come to visit and enjoy an full one.
As I work at my computer – as I am dong right now – and look to my right, this is what I see. Some personal art, part of the 2500 classical cds I have collected and a few small art objects.
We reported on our mission on Sunday the 30th. I am afraid I was a little preachy about the need for couple missionaries. I would have been kinder but I did not have enough time left to really do it properly so I just bore in. A number of parents of some of the elders we served with in South Africa, Joburg mission, the Roberts who we served with in Indonesia, the Bartholomews who we served with in Richards Bay, the Nuzmans who followed us in Richards Bay, our dear friend Fran Anderson and Frank Knowles who was our trainer in Potch all came to our sacrament meeting. There was also a good number of FFL RMs there.
After the meeting we came home where the family and some of the great FFL RMs gathered to have some lunch, have a good time talking about what has been going on in their lives, and just to say welcome home to us. It was a great time.
I am sorry that I am so far behind in putting words to the pictures I have posted since we have returned home. I thought I should comment on these photos and tell the stories behind them. On Monday August 24th elder Allred arrived at our flat to pick up all the furniture and other things that belong to the mission. For some unknown reason I did not take any photos of the packing of the trailer and truck. The job was made easy by the help of these four Angels and elder Allred. President Kwaikwai and his wife came to help as did elders Wild and Hentunen. We took final photos with them. They – and elder Allred – were the first Angels to help us on our journey home.
On Tuesday evening sister Dunn took us to the airport where two more ‘angels’ appeared just as we parked. Once again I failed to take any pictures of these un-named helpers who took all our luggage from the van and then escorted us and the luggage through all the ins and outs of getting it on the plane. This included getting it wrapped, showing where I needed to pay for the extra bag, and escorting us to our gate. Without them it would have been a real struggle to get through the check-in process. I gave them each a pass-along card and a nice tip. Even angels need to eat and take care of their families.
The young man on in the photo on the left is Karhk Radhakrishnan. As we got off the plane in LA we had to board buses. We got to the loading area the first bus had just been filled so we got on the second bus. Mary went to the back so she could sit down but I decided to stand with our carry-on bags so I did not have to haul them up and down the platform. As I standing waiting for the bus to fill this young man introduced himself as a returned missionary from India on his way to Salt Lake to go to LDS Business College. For the next two hours he took care of us and our luggage while we worked our way through the maze that is LAX. Once again I do not know how we would have got through without him. Why we know that he was sent to us by the Lord is that he was traveling with his friend who lives in Salt Lake and goes to LDSBC but he traveled on our plane from Dubai to LAX and on to SL because it was much cheaper than the flight his friend took. That is the reason we met him on the bus. If he had flown with his friend as they had planned we would probably never met him.
The next angel the Lord provided was Andrew Jackson – really that was his name – who saw Mary sitting waiting for Karhik and I to return from clearing our bags for the flight to LA. He got her a wheelchair and then escorted us through the maze of LAX to our gate.
Our grandson Shane Webb took over the gathering and hauling our luggage when we arrived at SLC. We have always thought he was an angel. But the story does not end there. It turned out that the friend that Karhk was traveling with and who he will be living with has been going to LDSBC with Shane and he had even been over to our son Bob’s house recently.
If you believe in a mass of coincidences than there was nothing special about our trip home, but we know that the Lord watched over us every step of the way and provided the right person at the right time to get two of His senior missionaries home with minimum struggles and worries.