What Might Have Been


I went to Asheville last week to meet with our client at her project site (pictured above).  I also got to hang with a bunch of my good friends AND drive around stalking all our houses, lots, potential houses and potential lots.  Here's a little update on things down South.


I'm not sure the people who bought our house are living in it which makes me very, very sad.  It shouldn't because it is just a house, and you know, it's not mine anymore.  But we loved that house. We poured so much into it, and to imagine it sitting empty gives me pause.


remember this little house VERY close to downtown that we lost out on?  Well, a developer out of the Northeastern US bought it (ugh) and have had their hands full.  I'm betting they will still make money on the sale, but they've had to almost completely rebuilt it.  (Iit is inside the Montford Historic District to boot!)  We are talking probably 75% new wood siding, all new foundation walls, new wood piers and new concrete pier foundations.  All new electrical and mechanical systems.  The inside was down to the studs, with many studs having been replaced.
Eek.  It would have been a great house in a great location, but that much work.  Maybe we are lucky we didn't get it after all?


the lot we bought and sold.  A friend of ours designed the house for it.  It is very different from what we would have done, but good to see something happening there!

I was supposed to take a bunch of photos of work Marc and I have done professionally, but the light wasn't right and I didn't have a good camera, so BAH.  I think we are going to have to hire it out.  So those later too!

Update from the Motor City

And yes, I said Motor City because I still only spell Detroit correctly 50% of the time.

So..... it has been awhile. Remember how I was going to write a big blog series on Detroit neighborhoods?    Well, self-employed life with two kids happened, and well, the series did not.  But the always amazing Meryl at Picardy Project recently wrote me a little note, so I'd thought I'd give an update.

Us at the awesome giant slide at Belle Isle, Campus Martius Beach bar downtown,
Guardian Building lobby, and the day Franca said: "Mom, let's go to a bar."

On Detroit

I love it.  I super super love it.

Where do I start?  The places!  The restaurants, the bars, the public plazas, the events, and festivals.  There is so much energy here.  The potential is like a magenta fog that surrounds every new storefront and pop-up shop.  I love it more than I even thought I would.

There is a lot to be said about an AFFORDABLE urban area.

I grew up in rural Ohio, but lived in both Berlin, Philadelphia, and  New York.  I'm not sure when I forgot, but within minutes of the D'lectricity festival in Midtown, it all came rushing back. I am truly a big city person.  Even though we are stuck in the 'burbs right now, my heart is down Woodward Avenue.

Post 30-mile Tour De Troit bike ride w/ Marc's dad, and Mina snuggling with my dad.

On Family

I lived 4,323 miles away from my family when I was 16.  In the years since, I got used to being far away from them.  Honestly, I was nervous about being so close again, but I'm happy to report: it is great.

Not only do my in-laws watch the girls on Wednesdays, Sue also cook us dinner.  We have cookie-baking day.  I can drive to my parents to chill and fix their ipad issues, and shop with my mom.

The girls adjusted just fine.  Franca loves school and Mina is enjoying bossing her Nonno around.

Perkins School for the Blind Talking Campus Model

On Work

Right now we are both still freelancing for different places and Marc is conducting his job search in his very Marc way.  (Focusing on where he wants to work until they hire him.)  I've been super busy with some really amazing projects for the visually impaired (see our talking map work here), freelance websites (like this one, this one, and this one in progress), and architectural contract work too.

Some exciting news is that we got a project designing a house for someone in North Carolina and I'm headed down there this weekend to meet with the client.

I'm sort of waiting for Marc to find a fulltime job and us to figure out where in this city we will land until in order to figure out my long-term game plan.  But like I said above, I'm really excited to be in an affordable place that will allow me to be creative and possibly start something of my own.

Mom! Take a picture of me jumping like this!

On the Future

Can you believe we haven't bought anything yet?  Yeah, me either.  I'm about to lose my damn mind over it too.  I don't do well without a plan.  I'm unwell.

We have our thumb on something very good, but it is just taking SO DAMN long to come together.  So long that we have started to look elsewhere.  But don't worry, I am on it in the most Bunny Type-A way possible.

I really wish I was ready to say something, but I'm just not.  Ugh.

Hopefully in the next post I will say we bought an acre of urban farmland, or 20,000sf of abandoned warehouse, or 5 neglected townhouses.  A girl can dream her crazy dreams here. It's Detroit after all.