The Make Up Wagon Comes to Hollyweed

TP1030674hank you Max Factor, Thank you. There’s nothing that makes a Hollyweed dame feel ready for her close up than a little make up. You know, a little foundation (the primer coat), a little color on the cheeks (the paint), and a little lightening on the top (the ceiling). And best of all a brand new pair of shoes in white washed oak with a 7 ½ inch plank. I would have laughed a month ago when I arrived here and I still had only studs, bare wiring, and exposed plumbing, if you told me that I would be sitting here this evening with the house painted and the hardwood floor laid. Today I even had daydreams of furniture and no more workers making a mess that I constantly clean up.

I’m not saying that this little starlet is ready for her debut, but the progress is remarkable. There’s still much to do. Water continues to be an issue (but probably only in my head), there’s no kitchen or bathroom, and the baseboard trim and the electrical outlet covers need to be installed. Not that all those in that list are of equal difficulty mind you. But we’re getting there! Oh, and not to mention four ceiling fans (two outside), three track lights, storm doors, and several dimmers, and some fairy dust. Yes, lots of fairy dust.

P1030673But at least the drywall dust is gone. I’ve never built a house and I never knew how complicated it could be. But there is something fulfilling about it. From the day Uncle Benny surveyed the foundation and I placed Ray’s ashes in the mortar for the cement blocks, I’ve known this is the right thing for me to do. Besides, it makes my Daddy grin and I like that. I know everything about this little house, all it’s little quirks and boo boos. They’re of my making and I love it. And it’s just a little house! I can’t believe the drama that would be involved in building something bigger.

I’ve made a couple of screw ups along the way, for sure, but I hope you’ll come anyway and see just how magical this particular location can be. I’ve a very, very nice front porch. Over the past few weeks I’ve watched it transform from bleak winter to verdant, budding spring (glorious!) to now when it’s nearly summer. Everything is now green and leafy, even the big old oak (I’ve named it the Wise One) has finally decided it’s time.

P1030676There’s something here that just feels really good to me. I suppose it’s the familiarity, maybe it’s the rhythm of the beauty, or perhaps because it’s simply the antithesis of West Hollywood and Los Angeles. But I think if I search deep I might know what it is. I haven’t felt “at home,” anywhere, since Ray died, and I’ve searched the world over. It seems rather ironic to me that it would be here that I have those thoughts. But I’m going to explore them in a new frame of mind (and a new house).

Maybe Wise One is telling me something: It’s time.





Miss Molly Pack joins me for dinner most evenings

"Wise One"

“Wise One”

Miss Molly Pack joins me for dinner most evenings

12 thoughts on “The Make Up Wagon Comes to Hollyweed

  1. listen to the wise one 🙂 and of course your older sisters…LOL
    I was thinking of Ray this morning, and I beleieve he would have loved your little house, and I also believe, with all my heart, he is right there with you, and he is grinning too. Sometimes you can go home again.

  2. I didnt know about Ray’s ashes, He has been all over the world with you, now you will always have him in your little home. I think he would like that,Love you

  3. You have done a wonderful job. Now you just need to get her bathed and dressed up. LOL i am excited for you. Welcome home.

  4. Randy, congratulations on this charming, centering place back home. The square footage may be small, but it feels like a big progression!

  5. Randy,

    If you have Hollyweed livable by the fall, Ann and I want to visit you, like early October or sometime when it’s not too cold and not too hot. Keep us in mind when you make your travel plans. Also, as a home remodeling expert, I can give you advice, since my specialty is spending other people’s money. Just sayin’.


    Michael Herrlein

    Michael Herrlein & Associates | Helping Organizations Shape the Future | 937.277.8022 office | 937.572.5694 mobile |

    • Hey Mike:

      “Livable by the fall” is my goal. I’m thinking of going back for a couple of weeks this summer to finish up so that when I do go for a longer period in the fall I can just sit back and enjoy it. I owe you two a call. It’s on my list.

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