Friday, June 21, 2013

first day of summer and it's all relative

 Happy first day of summer - my favorite season!
Just too bad the heat and mugginess brought thunderstorms today.
And that my neighbor's mulberry tree that we loathe is dropping tons of
mushy mulberries all over the side of our house, including the patio. And
the roof and gutters of the house. Unfortunately, this tree is monstrously
tall, so we can't reach the high branches to trim them back to the neighbor's
property line. I don't think we're going to have much of a choice but to
hire someone to come and trim this tree. This is the same neighbor that had
the rotting fence.

On to more positive things...yesterday, me and my mom took a long
drive out to the south side of Chicago to visit with some relatives that
we don't get to see too often. My mom's aunt - my great-aunt Sylvia - is
92 years old and now has severe dementia. I don't think she really knows
who I am, and she seems to sometimes recognize my mom. But what was
so heartwarming to see was how she truly knows and loves her younger
brother, my great-uncle Willie. Willie, his wife, and two daughters drove up
from the central part of Illinois to visit with Sylvia, as Sylvia was actually
asking for them recently.

Sylvia's son, my second cousin Greg, is one of the adored persons
in my life. We became very close when I was a teenager and lived
in Kentucky. Greg was going to university there, and he'd come and stay at
our house on the weekends. I didn't have my driver's license yet and since we
were pretty much stuck in no-man's land, weekends were pretty boring. Greg
would come to our house on Friday night, bearing his fantastic collection of
disco albums and a big bag of Doritoes - a junk treat that my mother rarely let us
 have. Greg would take me dancing to the disco in the closest decent-sized town,
 which was a 30-mile drive. We had the best heart-to-heart talks on these drives.
He was just so cool.

 Greg has the best design style. He really should be an interior designer; he's
that good. He has not only helped me with some of my color and decorating
choices, but now he's helping my mom re-do certain rooms in her house as well.
Greg lives with his mom (he's her caretaker) in a brick bungalow and had the
basement remodeled into a small apartment-like space for himself.  I love
his bedroom - it's masculine and neat and Greg really knows how to incorporate
modern with antiques. He has great taste in art, too.

Some more art pieces on his living room wall. I would've taken more pictures
of the living space, but Greg's basement recently had a flood (that must be hereditary,
too!) and so he hasn't completely put his living room back together yet.

It's hard to get good photos of anyone's bathroom space unless their bathroom
is ginormous, but you can see how Greg even incorporates prints
in his bathroom. I also love the bright blue walls with the black and white tile.

I would like to think that perhaps I got a little bit of my love for interior
design and the "talent" for it from my beloved cousin. 
Happy weekend!


  1. Well, I had no idea that a Mulberry Tree was such a messy tree! We had a Peach Tree a long time ago that was too close to the house and when the peaches set and dropped they turned into mush and attracted flies! Your trip was lovely, how nice to have so many loved ones within driving distance and yes Greg and you are both awesome decorators!
    Have a great weekend, Melanie!

    1. When the mulberries rot, they attract flies, too! I agree that it's wonderful to have relatives within driving distance, at least. Glad they're not out-of-state!

  2. We had to have a Mulberry tree taken out because it was near the girl's playhouse. They just kept coming in with that red stuff all over their shoes. So, we finally just had it taken out. They are such a mess.

    Great that you got to visit with family. Special memories.


    1. And this mulberry tree is HUGE...the branches span almost the entire length of our house. :-(

  3. And I just love that little patio area! That must be a real mess. So much for neighbors, huh?

    1. I love my patio area too, Brenda - just too bad that we can't enjoy it right now with all those dang mulberries!

  4. Why would anyone plant a mulberry tree in a yard with so many wonderful trees to choose from?

    1. She didn't plant it - it's been there "forever". I'm sure it's over 50 years old.

  5. Nice neighbor :)

    His place is really nice! He has a good eye.

    1. This neighbor and the one across the street are so hateful. It's really a shame. Yes, my cousin has a great eye for decorating. Thanks!

  6. I like your cousin Greg... (did you know I have a brother and a nephew named Greg?). He has a talent for decorating, just like you do...must be a family thing ;-) Love, Penny


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