Monday, September 28, 2015

The lions of Sheridan Street

The lion statues on Sheridan Street in Hollywood have been there for as long as I can remember. At first there were just a couple, then the next door neighbors got a pair, and the next. There are now five houses in a row with a total of 11 lion statues on Sheridan Street. My funny story about the lions is about the house on the end, which is an insurance agency. A few years ago Allstate raised our rates so I called around to get some other quotes. One of the companies I called was Progressive. Instead of talking to Flo, I was transferred to the local office. The lady there gave me her address and asked if I knew where it was. I said, "Yes, I think I do! Are you on the corner with the lion statues? I love the lion statues!" She said, "We are the only ones without lion statues." Well, that effectively killed that deal. I stayed with Allstate.

This is the Progressive agency. Sure enough, no lion statues.

This is the Asian massage next to it. Lion statues!

Next we have a psychic. Gold lion statues - eww!

Next there's an attorney's office. Excellent lion statues.

I think this is just someone's house. Lion statues.

And last but not least, another house with lion statues.

Here's how they look when you're going down the street. Just a nice normal row of lion statues! (Except for the insurance agency, of course.)

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Happy birthday Amber!

On this day back in 1976, Rob and I became the proud parents of a baby girl.  Amber has been one of the lights of our lives ever since.  

Here's the picture the hospital took right after she was born, and the card on her bassinet. She was the prettiest baby there!

Happy birthday, Amber!

Friday, September 18, 2015

I won a contest!

Hillcrest has a newsletter called Inside Hillcrest. Usually it's filled with depressing articles on the redevelopment of the golf course, but August's issue was a "whimsy" issue. When I got to the "Hillcrest State of the Market" page, I found a contest I couldn't help but enter. Here it is:

This was my description:

"Privacy abounds in this great starter or vacation home with killer ocean views from every window. Enjoy romantic sunsets on the wide front porch, picnics on the shore, and be lulled to sleep by the lapping of the waves every night. Truly a bargain at $425,000. One-dinghy garage included."

The other day I got an email saying I'd won the contest! I should be getting a $25 gift certificate in the mail soon and my answer will be featured in a future issue. Wow!

Monday, September 14, 2015

Atrium Apts

Every once in a while, I like to go by the places I used to live and see how they're doing. Today, Rob and I went by the first place we lived in Hollywood - the Atrium Apartments. We lived there from the time we got married in 1969 to shortly before Eric was born in 1970.  I have lots of memories of living there, such as calling my obstetrician over and over in the middle of the night telling him I thought I was in labor and him telling me it had to be false labor and to go to bed. (I was in labor.) Of bringing Julian home from the hospital. (We were so proud.) Of our nice neighbors who loved having Julian smile at them. (Well seriously, who doesn't?)

Here I am in front of the Atrium Apts. Our old apartment is just behind me on the second floor. When we lived there the building was new and well kept, but today it looked run down, seedy, and in desperate need of some lawn maintenance. It's still there, though!

Friday, September 11, 2015

Burrowing owls

Rob and I take a walk together almost every afternoon. In Austin, we see deer. In Hollywood, we see burrowing owls. They're cute little guys. The one near our condo has his burrow on the old Executive Nine Golf Course, which is just a big field now. Whenever we walk by we always check to see if our friend the burrowing owl is there. He usually is, standing halfway in his hole. The cute thing is how he turns his head from side to side, scanning the landscape. Every once in a while, there's another little owl there with him. (We assume it's his wife.) One day soon, builders are going to build houses on the golf course and we don't know what will happen to the owls. But for now, they're fine.

Our owl is in this picture. Can you find him?

Wednesday, September 9, 2015


Have I ever told you what a nice daughter I have? Amber sent us her old digital camera, which is just what we needed. Now that we have a real camera again, how about some beach pictures? Here we are at Hollywood Beach yesterday afternoon.

Thanks, Amber!

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Bad news

The inspection ended up being on Friday afternoon instead of Monday because Monday is a holiday. The inspector found a lot of things that were wrong, like the refrigerator didn’t work, the roof needed repairs, and there was some rotted wood, but none of them were serious except one: the plumbing. It turned out that every faucet in the house leaked, not just below the sink but some above the sink and one wouldn’t even turn off! The washing machine hot and cold valves leaked. The bathtub drain pan had issues. But the worst problem – the deal breaker – was in the kitchen. When the kitchen sink faucet and dishwasher were turned on, water from broken pipes in the wall behind them leaked down, ran under the drywall, and ended up in puddles in the air conditioner handler closet on the other side. 
As soon as the inspector found this, he pulled me aside. He told me he remembered inspecting the same townhouse five years ago - his mark was in the electrical panel - and he’d found the exact same problem. The only difference now was that the drywall between the dishwasher and the air conditioner had been replaced. He said with so many years of leaking, there was probably mold in the drywall that went all the way through the house and also mold in the air conditioner coils and ductwork. He said it was such a big problem he couldn’t even put a dollar amount on it. Here's a picture of the water leaking under the wall.

Yikes! Well, that was enough for us. I loved the view from every window - and you can’t beat five minutes to the beach - but as Rob says, a house with plumbing problems isn’t what you want to leave for two months. And who wants mold? So we’ve already opted out of the contract. We’ll keep looking in Dania Beach and Hollywood. I definitely think we’re on the right track. 

Friday, September 4, 2015

Townhouse update

There were three offers on the townhouse, but ours was accepted. The next step is to get it inspected, which we've set up for Monday. If it turns out there are too many costly things that need to be done (it might need a new roof) we can opt out of the contract. Of course, we'd try to negotiate with the seller first. So we'll see what happens. Meanwhile, here's another picture from the real estate listing.

 It's just what I wanted - grass and pretty trees right outside our back door.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Exciting news

We just put an offer on a cute little townhouse in Dania Beach. It has two bedrooms, one and a half baths, lots of grass and pretty trees in back, a washer and dryer, a nice pool, and it’s only 1.5 miles to the beach. Dogs are allowed up to 30 pounds, so even though that rules out another Golden Retriever, it gives us more choices in the medium dog category, which should be fine. It’s the best thing we’ve seen for the two-condo plan since we first started looking a year and a half ago. Ours isn’t the only offer, so we’ll have to wait and see what happens. The seller has till Friday to make a decision.  

Here’s a picture from the real estate ad. We still don’t have a real camera.