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Chinoiserie Chic • Mid Century Modern • Palm Beach Regency Vintage Sales & Rentals


Finding My "Happy Place"

LeAnn Stephenson

The past few weeks I have felt like I was diagonally parked in a parallel universe. I have had a series of weeks in which everything has gone perfectly wrong. For instance, I am apparently incapable of operating the United States Postal Service - i.e. I sent birthday presents to a couple of friends . . . YAY! . . . . Sent both presents to one address . . . BOO! My soccer Mom van's check engine light came on, luckily I was right in front of a service station that could fix it . . . YAY and WHEW! . . . the repair clocked in somewhere around $1200 . . . . BOO! And, to make things completely unbearable, my "happy pill" Rx needed renewing, which meant I had to have an office visit, but didn't have the time or the inclination to show up for that gig. So, I decided to see if I could bypass that with a tragic sounding phone call explaining the lack of time and the broken ride, yada, yada, yada.

When I’m on the phone with my doctor, the pressure’s on to convince her that I’m not really a "happy pill" junky. To accomplish this, I decided to go with my “business-sounding-I'm really-not-a wack-job-voice” which is a cross between an impersonation of my Mom and the queen of England. It sounded a little something like this;

" . . . aaah Doc, here’s the deal . . . I’m not in my "happy place" right now . . . I don’t have any more medication, and I’m due for an office visit and, uhmm . . . I was thinkin' we could just bypass the office visit and maybe you could just call in the refill? . . . . cuz, rubbing my blanky against my cheek and sucking my thumb isn't really working anymore . . . . and my family is getting a bit afraid, they kinda have that 3 little pigs look about them and I'll give you 2 guesses who I'M CAST AS!"

My doctor heard my alarmingly “Joan-Crawford-no-wire-hangers” tone and knew she had to take action, thank goodness . . . . She called my pharmacy and renewed it without an office visit . . . YAY! . . . I pulled up to the pharmacy drive through and wouldn't ya know it . . . they were closed . . . BOO!

Luckily, the November issue of Coastal Living was waiting in the mail yesterday, serving as a delightful distraction. A glass of wine, a good long soak in the bath with my magazine, and I was all inspired and returned to my "just-a-bubble-and-a-half-above-anxiety" level. Coastal Living's 2009 Idea House in Seawatch at Sunset Harbor, a new development near Southport, North Carolina, is simply marvelous and was just the escape I was looking for! The greens and grays chosen by interior designer Phillip Sides for the master suite, are especially enticing, as are the rest of the rest of the design team's contributions including builder Mark Saunders Luxury Homes, and architect Sam Guidry. The Cape Cod-inspired look with its gambrel roofs and cedar-shake shingle siding has a gi-normous 5,800 sq. feet with three levels and 14 beds, a downstairs rec room, a top level sleeping porch, and outdoor kitchen and deck. All of which has views of native loblolly pines, live oaks, and marsh grasses that back up to Mercer Mill Creek and more than 20 miles of nature trails for walking, running, or biking. I think the words I'm looking for are YOOWZA! and SIGN ME UP! You can watch all of the video tours of the house here.

The Idea house is open for tours through November 29th and proceeds from the tour ticket will benefit The Boys and Girls Homes of North-Carolina. Tickets can be purchased for $10 at the door or online here.

Another of the many pieces that transported me to a happier place was the piece on Emmy Award-winning, Sherry Bilsing's California bungalow. The TV writer of Friends and The New Adventures of Old Christine, asked designer Jackie Terrell to stage her real-life family home with vintage finds, and inject a little color, while still maintaining the kid-friendly style. The bungalow that she shares with her husband and son is new, but was built to look decades old. It is sandwiched between L.A. and the ocean in Santa Monica, California, with views of The Santa Monica pier from the master bedroom. Sherry’s penchant for vintage style and her sense of humor were interpreted quite well by Jackie by using schoolhouse-looking things, like the glass-shade pendant lamps, maps, and globes from different eras. More photos and info can be found here.

Aaaah . . . . Now that's better, my universe is making a little more sense . . .

Photos courtesy Coastal Living, photographers Tria Giovan, Dominique Vorillon and stylists Heather Chadduck and Char Hatch Langos

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