Sunday, May 4, 2014


Here is Our Mia and Lauren and Kaia on Thursday evening.

Kaia is the "girly" child--loves her bows and jewelry!
Next week will be the one year anniversary of the start of the adventure of Mia's healing. It has been a tumultuous year filled with hope and fear, embracing the unknown, incredible joy and sadness and the pain and redemption of growth for all of us. Most of all, Mia's parents--James and Grace have grown in love and strength and faith. I am so proud to have witnessed their walk. We are all inexpressibly grateful for all of the care, love and prayers of an infinite number of individuals. Being admitted to St. Jude's Children's Hospital Tennessee for their proton radiation study; simply living in Orange County California which has one of the top 5 children's neurology centers in the US (20 min. from home); the support of our families--especially Grace's Mom who almost lived at James and Grace's home for the many months of intense care (I was only "morning mom"). Whenever I consider how all these elements miraculously united to bring the best to Our Mia, my heart overflows with awe. Thank you to everyone who prayed for Mia--all of our prayers are yielding fruit. There is still a long road to go.....the pressure on the optic nerve has affected her right eye, hopefully a restarting of her pituitary will occur naturally and other healing processes will kick in over the next year or so.

Well, it is progressing, but with a bit more than the usual ups-and-downs of the restoration process.
Here is a glimpse of sections of the credenza before restoration

And here is Roberto removing the hardware for polishing--this step alone is quite time-consuming......

Here is a shot of what the large door handles look like now that they are all polished--just a bit of finish work left on these guys. The brass handles and their frames measure over 6" in length--gorgeous!

Now.....for the trials and tribulations of restoration work: Roberto carefully removed all of the parts of the handles and we counted them together and put them in a box. When Andrew opened the box to start polishing the hardware, 3 of the (don't know the name of these parts..) were missing!!! (Huge Sad Face)
Have no idea how this happened; have looked high and low to no avail; must be leprechauns (and I am 95% Irish).
These are the little F______ that are causing all of the trouble.

Carlos can make me new ones--we will have to make 4 so that they match on the two drawers pulls that need them and it will be very pricey to cast and polish and then add back the patina that would have naturally occurred.........Such is life.

I met Flavio at my space at The Collection on La Cienega on Thursday (it had been almost 100* on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday). At first glance I loved what I saw (but it was super hot, no parking, rushing to get back to OC to watch The Girls at 4:45 and THURSDAY FREEWAY TRAFFIC)--but I wasn't taking in all of the details. The restoration of the case lacquer is fantastic--perfection!! The door and drawer fronts are not what we had decided at all--although they do look good. Check it out

I was hoping to have this piece ready for the La Cienega Legends of Design Event this week.....and I guess that just isn't going to happen. The drawer fronts and drawers were supposed to have a white lacquer finish that allowed the graining of the wood to show through. This is a rough stained finish that hasn't been properly finished or sanded........such in life......everything is fixable at this point.

The Beidermeier or perhaps Louis Philippe walnut day bed is almost complete.......once again the tribulations of restoration.........(ayyyyyyyyyy!!!!!!!)
And here she is

What I am definitely learning (having it engraved in my brain) is that, although I think that I am communicating very effectively, apparently I am not.
Although Flavio repeated what was required for both the credenza and daybed while we were together; I really needed to follow up those communications with another conversation to remind him of what we had decided (Roberto has spoiled me--he never needs to be reminded and he asks questions if not sure). 
Also, I had another miscommunication with someone: who knew that some people thought that the first week in May was last week; and others (the vast majority and myself included) think that the first week in May starts today? (I did a bit of research on this: No.1 choice: 1st week of month is the first COMPLETE week of that particular month. No.2 choice: first week of the month is when the majority of days (ie. at least 4) fall within that week). Obviously, I didn't show up for something that I had committed to being at on "Thursday of the first week of the month" take away is that I need to remember to hammer down the details of what I assume is clearly understood. (Directly from The Four Agreements: Make No Assumptions)........ayyyyyyyyy!

I spotted these amazing lamps in the "junk/low-end" section of Thursday's auction. I thought that they were pretty fantastic. So I arrived in LA promptly at 9:00 am for the start of the auction--only to have to wait for 1.5 hours for them to come to the block.


It turns out (I turned over these enormously heavy lamps-I guess no one else bothered or were intimidated by their weight) that these beefy guys (they measure a full 35") were created by Chapman and probably date to the late 70's or early 80's (see prior post). Anyway, I SCORED!! But the polishing process is going to be arduous (I will be listening to Andrew's vociferous protestations for several days). I ordered a 1.1 lb. tin of Maas Metal polish from ebay--about 1/8th of the cost of buying the little tubes at the hardware store.
These bruisers will be amazing when spiffed up and a new silk-wrapped cord added. I think I'll switch out the black shades from the Frederick Cooper brass lamps for white ones and then use the black shades for these Regency Style lamps.  I need to schedule Lupe to come next week to rewire the lamps--too heavy to take to his shop.

My boy is once again looking handsome (one of his favorite words)--his all day trip to The Spa seems to have tired him out.

We are all having dinner together at Mia's house (except Jones--he gets overly excited and mistakes Mia for another dog--not great). So I'm not going to the shop......and it has cooled down from 97* to a cool 80*.
Hope everyone is enjoying a gorgeous spring day......with no more rain/snow for you guys on back East.

Be well,
Mary & Jones & Cole


  1. Mary you have so much going on. The refurbishing and finishing work is coming along beautifully. Those new lamps, wow! Email me you have time...I want to share some ideas.

    The Arts by Karena

  2. And of course thinking of your incredible family and Mia always.....

    1. Hi Karena, Thank you!! I really don't think that I have that much going on,,,,,but when I add it up, I guess I do. Thank you for all of your prayers over the last year. I'm off to email you right now. xoxoxo Mary

  3. Dear Mary - I've finally recovered from that disastrous move up north!! And we finally have gorgeous weather after all that rain. So I'm enjoying a bit of quiet house and garden. Thanks for the update on Mia. I always think of her and you all. Your credenza is stunning - what a transformation!! I do love its length and sleek lines. Congrats on your lamps! Hope to see those soon. Bye for now, L

    1. Hi Loi, Thank you for all of your support!! I do know a lot about moves and how a tough one can wear you out! Glad that you are home safe and sound. Did you take photos of everything in place at the Maine House?? Can't wait to see them. Mia just had a complete physical and psychological evaluation this am--she has caught up to her age level and exceeds age level on many tests. So many, many miracles in one little girl. Gratitude is overflowing..