Thursday, September 26, 2019

Our Velux Skylight, Part 1

There is no better pick-me-up than the sun's rays on my face. 

Sunlight streaming through windows and skylights into our home's interior, no matter the outdoor temperature, make me happy. 

 Skylight #1

better and brighter, ptL!

kitty getting his tan

 Pets don't mind sunlight neither

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

America Gold Toilet : Where Art Thou?

Any news-worthy stories/headlines about GOLD remind me of my late cousin.  He passed away on this day in Year 2011 and is sorely missed by his wife, children, relatives.

He & wife purchased 23-kt gold jewelry on my behalf while in Asia. My beautiful items are safely tucked-away in the bank safe and hopefully will not be stolen.  Daring thieves took this one-of-a-kind 18k precious, functional "throne" (sculpture named AMERICA) which was on loan from  the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. Worth $6 million!!  So far, there are no solid leads on who dunnit. 

Leon Neal/ Getty Images

Two People Arrested for Stealing $6 Million Golden Toilet Named 'America' - via Western Journal

Two people have been arrested in connection with the theft of a golden toilet from Blenheim Palace, the birthplace of former British Prime Minister Winston Churchill.
The theft occurred Saturday (September 14th), according to The Associated Press. A 36-year-old man was held on suspicion of conspiracy before being released, and police earlier arrested a 66-year-old man. Neither suspect is currently in jail.
The toilet, which is a working model and could be used by visitors to Blenheim, was created as a work of art and was at the palace for a short-term art display. It has a value estimated near $6 million, according to The Guardian.
The toilet, titled “America,” was created by Italian artist Maurizio Cattelan.
Because the toilet was connected to the palace’s plumbing, significant water damage took place after it was stolen. The toilet had been installed in a room next to the one in which Churchill was born.
Blenheim Palace
“We are continuing to investigate this incident and have made a second arrest in connection with it. Our priority is to locate the stolen item,” Detective Inspector Steven Jones of the Thames Valley Police said.

Blenheim chief executive Dominic Hare said the incident reminded him of a “heist movie.” He said the theft was the “first theft of this type in living memory” from the estate, according to the BBC.

The palace has “a sophisticated security system,” he said, but its security staff is “now challenged to look hard at ourselves and improve again.”
Hare said the artwork was a “comment on the American dream.”
“At first, when they woke me up this morning with the news,” Cattelan told The New York Times. “I thought it was a prank: Who’s so stupid to steal a toilet? I had forgotten for a second that it was made out of gold.”

“‘America’ was the one percent for the 99 percent, and I hope it still is. I want to be positive and think the robbery is a kind of Robin Hood-inspired action,” he said, adding that the theft was not a prank to call attention to the work.
 “I wish it was a prank,” he said, adding that the incident “is deadly serious if even a little bit surreal since the subject of the robbery was a toilet.”
Cattelan also had a request for the thieves: “Dear thieves, please, if you are reading this, let me know how much you like the piece and how it feels to pee on gold.”
“It is deeply ironic that a work of art portraying the American dream and the idea of an elite object made available to all should be almost instantly snatched away and hidden from view,” Hare said.
pc: wikipedia
The toilet had previously been exhibited at the Guggenheim Museum in New York City, where in 2017 its curator estimated more than 100,000 people had used it.
After its time at the Guggenheim, the golden toilet was offered to President Donald Trump for use at the White House, but Trump declined the offer, according to Fox Business.

Thou shalt not steal.
Exodus 20:15


Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Real Estate: How to Sell Your Home for Over Asking Price

pc: Domino Magazine
During my daily dog-walks, I take note of the For-Sale signs in the neighborhood.  

Having the sale sign go up for the same house within a short span of time always get me to ponder: 

- why
- are they flipping a home
- will they earn a profit
what home improvements have they done

Then, of course, I remind myself to pray for the next owners.

I would refer to this list of 15 proven ideas for home projects if I were to look ahead to buying or selling a home. I've taken-on 4 on the list.  Thinking of doing 1 more: 15 Renos That Could Get You 30 Percent Over Ask

Heated floors are the ultimate cold-climate amenity, and in places like New York, they can increase the value of a home by 24 percent. (Domino Magazine)
pc: C Guilfoyle, Domino Magazine
Solar Panels
When IKEA starts doing it, you know you need to get on it, and solar panels are high on the list of most-desired home amenities. Not only can they cut one’s electricity bill by up to 40 percent, but they can also earn you 21 percent more when you decide to sell your home.

pc: R Rak

Herringbone or Parquet Floors
A clear trend in home design is herringbone or parquet floors. Trust us: It will make any interior look extra-luxe. (Domino Magazine)

pc: C Guilfoyle, Domino Magazine

Most homebuyers agree:  An outdoor fireplace is a must for when the weather gets cold. Of course, Los Angeles has the lion’s share with its year-round mild climate, but the rustic brick version in this sophisticated Montauk home has us dreaming of lazy Hamptons days too. (Domino Magazine)
pc: M Vang

It turns out that prep sinks aren’t the only option people look for—farmhouse sinks are still trending in a major way, with homebuyers seeking out these rustic pieces. We’re totally in love with this one in Thomas O’Brien’s pool house. (Domino Magazine)

pc: SK Johnson

It’s not surprising that additional space would result in additional profits, and we’d wager that homebuyers are interested in turning these spaces into home offices, chic hangout spots, or guesthouses. Of course, people could very well just be interested in a place to store their garden tools and bicycles. (Domino Magazine)

pc: J Isaac

Read the full Domino Mag. ~~ H E R E ~~

Sunday, September 22, 2019

Nail Art: Part 4, Mellow Yellow in No-chip Nails

I've been drawn to the color YELLOW in the nail-world recently. Probably 'coz of Summer and sunny weather. It's a hope-full color, IMO, as if world is getting ready for an abundant harvest.  Similar to the color green in Springtime -- symbol of growth and new beginnings. 

Autumn in the Northern Hemisphere begins tomorrow, September 23rd. 

pc: E Aranda, fb


Friday, September 20, 2019

Survey Winner: Best Luxury Hotel in the World

Although Donald Trump’s presidency has brought a lot of controversy and disagreements among the American people, it seems there is one thing that luxury travelers all agree on. The Trump Organization runs a good hotel. According to voters in an exclusive luxury travel magazine, the Trump International Hotel and Tower in Manhattan was voted the best hotel in the world, beating out other great locations including those in the Middle East.

Donald Trump’s NYC Hotel Was Just Voted The Best In The Entire World AWM American Web Media

The property, which overlooks the southwestern corner of Central Park, narrow beat out the amazing  Vatuvara Private Island in Fiji that has entertained guests including Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. That Pacific Island resort was named the second-best hotel in the world.

pc: AWB

The reader survey that asked well-traveled people to rate their “travel experience” at certain locations resulted in the Trump Organization property being labeled the “best hotel in the world.”
The second-place winner was the resort in Fiji while third place went to the immaculate Emirates Palace in Abu Dhabi, which won the best luxury location in the world in the same survey last year.
pc: Vatuvara

Other top rated places include the Burj Al Arab in Dubai, which placed fourth and the Sheraton Maldives Full Moon Resort, which took fifth place.
According to Daily Mail, the remaining properties on the list were Atlantis Paradise Island, Bahamas (sixth); The Langham, Sydney, Australia (seventh); The Dorchester, London (eighth); Trump International Hotel Washington, D.C. (ninth) and The Grand Hotel Les Trois Rois, Basel, in Switzerland (10th).
pc: Emirates Palace

The magazine is based in the United Kingdom and features readers who love shelling out thousands of dollars for luxury travel. They’re among the best-traveled people around the globe.

According to Trump’s winning hotel’s website: “At Trump International Hotel & Tower, we are renowned for our iconic building, unparalleled views, and luxurious amenities. The newly designed guest rooms, suites, and hallways create an ultra sophisticated ambiance capturing the hotel’s vibrant New York City location. Offering a more contemporary look, the design is inspired by our view of the Central Park, and the energy of Columbus Circle. From your first step off the elevator, the woven wooden wall, sparkling crystal chandeliers, and custom wall sconces create a youthful elegance. Walls are covered with a soft gray palette and crisp white crown molding. Fabrics were selected in a variety of textures to stimulate the sensorial experience. Discover the design elements that reflect a youthful, energetic, and luxurious new experience at Trump International Hotel & Tower New York!”

While Trump’s politics are often in question, the fact that this hotel is great is not. Without a doubt, international travelers respect this New York hotel and recognize it as one of the best in the world. This year it took home the top spot, which was a mighty honor for the hotel based beside Central Park.
Trump International Hotel, Chicago

Editor-in-chief of Luxury Lifestyle Magazine, Nick Gibbens, “‘He clearly divides opinion on a political level, but there is no question about it, Trump is a master hotelier. He understands what super luxury is all about and delivers the very best experience possible, usually exceeding expectations.”

Burj Al Arab, Dubai, wikipedia


Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Matte Black Hardware & Nate Berkus (Birthday)

Birthday boy and Designer Nate Berkus is 48 years old (September 17th)

 ... and apparently hates the matte black finish/color.  Did not know this before I chose my Kitchen and RO faucets, but no matter, I would have still bought them.

Nate Berkus Can’t Get on Board With This Popular Kitchen Trend - Lydia Geisel, Domino Magazine

Nate Berkus isn’t afraid to go against the grain ...
 Chairish, the online marketplace for vintage decor and furniture, recently gathered a crew of our favorite celebrity designers to play a game of “love it” or “hate it.” Berkus, Brent, Bobby Berk, and Leanne Ford were just a few who were present for the fun. Each designer was handed a two-sided paddle and asked to weigh in on popular design trends. Ford captured the heated debate on her Instagram Stories.
While we weren’t surprised to find that the majority of the group was firmly against flameless candles (although, Berk made a powerful case for restaurants and windy days), when asked about matte black hardware everyone came to a positive consensus—err, that is with the exception of Berkus.

“You hate it? Sick of it?” Chairish cofounder Anna Brockway asked Berkus. His face says it all. “I mean, I don’t hate iron—real iron—but I’m tired of matte black,” he confidently declared. 
We tried to contain our confusion as the shocking news sank in. Tired of matte black? Where does he stand on glossy black? If iron is cool, what about oil-rubbed bronze? What does this mean for modern-minimalist kitchens? We’ve become totally unhinged. 
In our search for answers, we fell down a rabbit hole of chic black hardware because, hey, we’re not ready to take sides just yet. As it turns out, there’s a knob, pull, and hinge for everyone to love—including Berkus.
Read the full Domino Magazine article H E R E

pc: Home Depot

my fave kitchen pic from IG

For thou, Lord, art good, and ready to forgive ...