Here's my map to help guide Santa's sleigh. And his real estate agent.

Here’s my map to help guide Santa’s sleigh. And his real estate agent.

I grew up in North Dallas and have lived all over Dallas and the ‘burbs, but when I finally landed in East Dallas in 2007, I knew I had found my happy place.

East Dallas has a culture unlike anywhere else in the city (although North Oak Cliff feels like its cousin). I could spend hours walking or biking through neighborhoods like Little Forest Hills, Buckner Terrace, and the Peninsula. So many beautiful houses! So many trees! And friendly neighbors everywhere!

Circumstances and a new baby moved me to Plano this year, and I have pined over my favorite neighborhoods in East Dallas ever since. I go out of my way to get back to East Dallas as often as possible, and because I’ve been very good this year, I’m asking Santa for a token of his appreciation for Christmas: A midcentury house east of White Rock Lake. With original hardwoods. And mature trees.

That’s not too much, is it?

I’ve got a few ideas for Santa, in case he’s stumped. This Casa Linda cottage has just the kind of curb appeal I love: big trees, tranquil setting, and an expansive yard. Located at 1422 Tranquilla Dr., it’s listed at $348,500 and is a 3-2 with 1,857 feet. That’s not quite large enough for my family of four, so we might have to sell the teenager before we move. But I’m OK with that.

1422 Tranquilla Dr

Looks at those gorgeous original hardwoods! And the built-ins! And a wood-burning fireplace! So much character from when it was built in 1945.  (more…)

I never leave home without my Duxiana travel pillow.

I am in Costa Rica, a beautiful third world country with some of the poorest residents in the world. Today, en route to a nature preserve, we drove inland and I saw typical Tico housing, some incredibly poor homes. Two bedrooms, maybe a bath, a wash room and a kitchen is the extent of their square footage. If lucky, they have running water though I saw one washing machine being filled from a hose. Outside the homes are gardens,  chickens, goats, maybe a cow or two and a horse. My my, I thought, how we take for granted so much in our cushy American lives. For many
families dealing with homelessness and poverty, furniture and even a roof over their heads are unattainable luxuries. In Dallas, these people rely on non-profit organizations such as Dwell with Dignity, which is dedicated to creating warm, inviting homes for the poor and homeless. Dwell with Dignity receives help from organizations such as International Furnishings and Design Association (IFDA) Texas Chapter, which puts on a silent auction every year that benefits Dwell with Dignity.
And guess what? IFDA’s 11th Annual Silent Auction is Thursday, November 10 from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Brown Jordan Showroom, located in the Dallas Design District. Not only will designers get needed support and continuing  educational activities,  some very lucky people are going to get new home furnishings.
“This is such an inspiring and celebratory event for us,” said Becky Pipka, President, IFDA Texas Chapter. “In adhering to the goals of IFDA/EF, proceeds from our Silent Auction 2011 will benefit IFDA Texas Chapter programs, IFDA Educational Foundation and the local non-profit, Dwell with Dignity.”
Guests will nosh appetizers provided by My Fit Foods and Rockfish Seafood Grill while they browse and bid on designer furniture, home accessories, exclusive services and much more.
The IFDA, which was founded in 1947, is a professional organization representing the diverse industries that make up the residential and commercial furnishings and design. It is the only all-industry Association whose members provide services and products to the furnishings and design industry.
Dwell with Dignity has a singular mission of helping families escape poverty and homelessness through design – one household at a time. The non-profit organization provides and installs home interiors for families that include furnishings and art, bedding and kitchen supplies and food in the pantry.