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I didn’t buy a zoo…

The truth is, it’s all my fault.
See, I’ve bought a house in Alabama. Not just any old house, but a neglected and beautiful old 1906 Arts and Crafts bungalow in Mobile, AL. (See more at
But let’s just back that ol’ bus up for a moment. You need context.

Could I be any happier?

Could I be any happier?

In my last blog post I vaguely hinted about this … because restoring a Southern home to its former glory has been on my bucket list for a very long time. Dismissed as unachievable and off-the-chart nuttiness by my long-suffering husband, I’m afraid I chose to dig my heels in. Because he said I couldn’t do it decades ago, I guess I subconsciously took that as a challenge. So now that I’ve done it, I tell him to be thankful. I could have bought a zoo.

So I nurtured my dream. Years went by as I noodled away at it and kept revisiting how it could happen. You could say it became my Southern Romance. And you know what, I finally found a way to achieve it.

I like to call it a win-win.

I get to restore a great and glorious home and Phantom Screens gets an amazing showcase for our retractable screens.

Actually, I should say win-win-win.

Because another win is that you get to join me on our restoration journey through the power of the interweb, social media and Instagram (my new favourite network).

So much work to be done - but what beautiful bones!

So much work to be done – but what beautiful bones!

Anyways, if you do join us on this escapade I can promise lots of adventure, the unvarnished highs and lows of restoring a home, antiques galore, more interior design choices than you can handle, along with a chance to meet the delightful Ford family and learn how their history, the history of the home and the history of Mobile are all intertwined.

As if that’s not enticing enough, you’ll be able to watch a thirteen part online mini-series featuring me, TV personality and construction guru Danny Lipford as well as a host of fabulously fascinating folks full of Southern charm and humor.

OK. Enough already. You can probably tell I’m excited to share. Which usually means I’ll over share – but not this time. I’m going to save my stories for later blogs. Next time I’ll tell you more about the house and our plans for it.

But if you’d like to see more then check out the social media links at the bottom of this blog. There’s also a gallery of pictures and more about the home at the Southern Romance website: (where you can sign up for regular updates!)

Southern RomanceOh  – one more thing. Let’s go with: win-win-win-winn.  

That’s the three wins outlined above, plus the Winn from “Because of Winn Dixie” – one of my all-time favorite films and one of the biggest reasons I lost my heart to the South yet again. I’m not a big TV or movie watcher but truth be told most of my favorites seemed to be based in the South – need proof? Besides Winn Dixie, there’s The Walton’s, The Andy Griffiths Show, Driving Miss Daisy, Sweet Home Alabama and Fried Green Tomatoes….. and believe it or not I have yet to watch “Gone with the Wind.” As soon as I find three free hours I’ll be all over it.

‘Nuff said for now.

Here are the social media links so you can follow along:

Have you ever made a dream come true? What do you think of our Southern Romance? As always, please let me know!

2 Comments Post a comment
  1. Ray Bueckert #

    Incredible, watching Southern Romance is so much fun…and Esther, it reminds me of my days as a ‘Panatoplet’ in Nanaimo, when we would have our twice (or so) monthly telephone conversations. You are still incredibly witty intelligent and caring. I loved the ‘tea on the front porch’ episode, it really shows what a classy person you are. While, you are no longer my favourite ‘Accounting Type’ person…my wife is an accountant…I have to tell you how much I appreciated your honesty, advice and your sense of humour. Thank you.

    February 25, 2016

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