Happy Thanksgiving! After our neighborhood was spared from fire and evacuations in the Woolsey fires two weeks ago, being Thankful is an understatement!
That Saturday, as an annual tradition, my friend Nicola and I were scheduled to go to the Ojai Holiday Home Tour. Since Ojai is one of my favorite places, and legally peeping into peoples homes thrills me, we look forward to this event hard core. But by Friday afternoon the freeway entrance by my house, which heads north towards Ojai, was closed and the fires were only one neighborhood away.
The event ticket was good for either Saturday or Sunday. We decided not to go on Saturday. It was hard to dwell in disappointment, (even though we were), as families and animals were being displaced and losing their homes. Another girlfriend texted me at 2AM Friday night to tell me that they had to evacuate, really scary. Saturday night I was glued to the news, seriously I slept with my laptop.
Could we possibly go on Sunday? Could I live with the Jewish guilt of touring beautiful homes while others were literally burning to the ground? What if the wind changed and I abandoned my husband to evacuate with our 4 fur babies? On the other hand this was a charity event and what if after all their hard work no one showed up, they even sent an e mail with alternate routes to Ojai. After all, they had their own share of fires and heartache last year with the Thomas fire. I couldn't sleep.
Sunday morning I did what I always do when making a decision, I go deep and go with my gut. We were going. It usually takes about an hour and 15 minutes to get to Ojai from my house. It took us three hours. We drove through smoke, passed flames, we got lost, the GSP was worthless and kept trying to get us back to roads that were closed. We drove through a town called Filmore which led us to a mountain pass that looked like Mars. Sand was blowing at us and the car was being pelted with tumble weeds! Tumble weeds!!! We later found out we drove through a rock quary. We had no cell service. Fortunately I grabbed crackers, water and bananas on the way out the door. It was both hilarious and scary. But we made it! None the worse for wear. Here we are on the most magnificent property called Patina Farm. Notice my new do? (Left 7 inches on the cutting room floor.)
I wish I could show you the pictures from inside the homes, but for obvious privacy reasons no photos allowed, however I can share the photos they had on the event website since those are public. Prepare to drool!
Starting with my favorite, Patina Farm, which 5 years ago was just a vacant lot! This gorgeous masterpiece is the result of one couples vision, the husband is an architect and the wife is a designer, what a combination, every detail was just gorgeous. Building a house is like any other art form, you have to conceive it in your mind and then take it step by step. This house was truly a work of art.
This next one was surrounded by the gorgeous Topatopa Mountain Range.
I was super excited when I saw that this house below was going to be on the tour because it had been on the Ojai Garden Tour in 2017 and I loved this outdoor dining room, you can't see it from this picture but there is a pizza oven on the left. Getting to see the chefs kitchen inside was a real treat. The homeowner is a cook book author.
These are a few pictures I took outside at Patina Farm, nothing private, but just the cutest little farm with goats and chickens and veggies plus I'm a sucker for a good greenhouse.
And of course, a trip to Ojai is not complete without Papa Lennon's amazing garlic fries!!!
This is the first ever Thanksgiving my daughter and I are apart and it's for a wonderful reason. So although I miss her terribly I'm so happy that she is off living her dreams as an actress filming on the other side of the world! So much to be thankful for!
From our table to yours,