Wednesday, October 17, 2012
For five days I have not left the Penny Palace and thus, no Penny Finds. Saturday and Sunday October 13th and 14th were two days of Celebrations. Dozens and dozens of people visited and added their JOY to the home. I spent the three subsequent days dealing with the aftermath of the Celebrations. There was the rental equipment company to work with, trash to haul, nine loads of laundry, housecleaning, emails from people who did attend and messages from those who could not. There were bills to pay, rental property work to catch up with, the sale of the Pomona house to work on and other things. There are still gifts to unwrap and thank you notes to write.
It is fitting that the 1,393 Days of Consecutive Penny Finding end with such a Grand Finale!
What a special journey through the various phases. For the first 100 days each day was a shock that the Finding continued. Then there were the 10 Weeks of Change and 25 Days of Promise. By then Doc began finding as well. With his (at first hesitant) involvement, Penny Tales became more fun. Gradually “the Rookie” became more skilled (and addicted) than “the Old Pro”! With Doc’s insight, talents, and personality, the Daily Penny Tales were enriched. Plus, he provided a “straight guy” of whom I could poke fun. My admiration, devotion and love for him has grown tremendously as he has traveled right by my side on this unforeseen path. (Meaning both the Penny Finding and the Building of ‘Tina’s Ark’).
Remember … Never stop Believing in YOUR Dreams.
The next time you see a found Penny (other coins count as well) remember... There are Angels with you every step of your day. Just call on them for assistance, comfort and even play!
Tuesday, October 16, 2012
|Tour Group #1|
Two Days of CELEBRATING with a multitude of diverse and wonderful guests. People I would have never imagined came to add their JOY to the Penny Palace. At times I was totally speechless. Now I’m wondering if I dreamed it or if it was real? Good thing the visitors signed the guest list so there is evidence that they were actually here!
There were some touching notes and comments both during the event and afterward. Here are a few email excerpts:
- “As soon as I walked through your front doors I felt pure LOVE and HAPPINESS!”
- “Disneyland, which is my favorite place in the world, took a backseat on Saturday.”
- “It was so comfortable that I just wanted to go home and get my jammies and slippers on and come right back”.
- “It is Absolutely Beautiful! Extremely Fun!”
- “To experience the building of a dream through an incredibly thorough daily blog, and then to see the final result in all its glory – that was quite an experience”.
- “I did not expect to be amazed, charmed, blown away by all the meaning behind everything, the thoughtfulness of every detail, and the whimsy of an elf door and a dog doorbell (both functional, no less)”.
- “The house is so very inviting. You just want to sit and take it all in”.
- “What a lovely home you have and amazing stories to share. We didn't want to leave”.
- “I left your enchanting home fulfilled”
Those are pretty awesome reviews!
There is no way to convey in words the “Magic” of the Penny Palace and the Spirit of the Celebrations.
Saturday, the 6th was the Annual Fall Potluck with Doc’s co-workers from school.
Wednesday, the 10th was a potluck with 20 neighbor families.
Sunday, the 14th was a potluck/reunion with the Solar Rayce Team alumni
… and in between there was the Open House!
Numerous times during those events I just stood back quietly and thought, “This is the purpose of the Penny Palace; to bring people together; to infect people with Joy!”
The day after the event I had the thought, “Some of these people ‘came out of the woodwork’ as they might possibly have done for my funeral! Sure glad I did not have to die in order to see them. Lots more JOY with this event.”
People who could not attend have asked for photos. I was way too busy hugging, leading tours, and crying joy tears to be taking pictures! Thankfully Saturday morning, I took a quick (2.5 minute) video walk through of the house for you before guests arrived. Hope that at least gives you a feel for the house.
Thank You for the Roll you have played in our Lives.
Tina (and Doc) Shelton
Friday, October 12, 2012
|Aussie Room Drapes|
Doc insisted upon going out for breakfast. He argued that I needed to find a coin. He got biscuits and gravy. I got a penny outside the restaurant door. (Coin #1)
|Bedroom Drape Installation|
Drapery Installer Kevin arrived at 10 a.m. He hung the drapes in the Aussie Room and Master Bedroom. Those should help protect the flooring which is already showing signs of sun damage.
The whole day was spent preparing for the upcoming weekend Celebrations.
At 10 p.m. one of our renters called to see if I could meet her and accept this month’s rent. We met in a shopping center where I found a penny - in the dark.
God’s 2 cents worth for the day.
|The Boys Grading Papers|
I have no idea if we should expect 20 people or two hundred people this weekend? Saturday is the day for the Subcontractors - to recognize them for all their efforts (plus anyone else). Sunday is a day for co-workers plus anyone else. Then we’ll have dinner with our “solar car family” (the students and others who were part of the Solar Car Raycing Teams).
Total: 2 Pennies
Thursday, October 11, 2012
It is the “day after” (which means clean up). At 11 a.m. I headed to school to attend a lecture by Randy Peeters. He and Doc were classmates in college. I had just spoken about Randy earlier this week to a colleague and suggested maybe someday they would meet. (Randy lives 470 miles from here). Within a few hours I heard through the grape vine that Randy was making a last-minute presentation at CPP on his way to a seminar elsewhere! COINcidence?
At 1:15 I went to the Pomona house to fill the ponds and check on things. I stopped at Target to buy a replacement garden house for the one that burst recently. Also bought a new coffee brewer since last night our old one leaked all over the counter just before the party started. I found two dimes at that store. (Coins #1&2).
At the office supply store I did not find any coins, so I started talking to the Angels on my way out: “Look Angels, reminder that this is PENNY Tales. I’m not planning to go anywhere else today, so please deliver now.” Within a few feet I found a Penny! “Thanks Angels!”
Doc had a really long day at school and did not arrive home until nearly 10:30 p.m. Then he was worthless as far as providing any assistance or doing any work around the house.
Total: 3 Coins P (1), N (0), D (2), Q (0) = $0.21
Wednesday, October 10, 2012
This morning Doc said we need to go out early - to find a coin (and to get him some breakfast and a coffee). We went for Subway sandwiches and while Doc got the food, I wandered around searching for coins. Found one penny under the bench in front of the ice cream shop. (Coin #1)
Doc said one coin was not sufficient, so he drove across the street to the 7-11 gas station where I collected two more pennies. (Coins #2&3).
Speaking of COINcidences … The weather forecast had warned of potential rain tonight. This morning the hourly on-line predictions were cloudy at 10, 11, Noon, 1, 2, 3, then turning to Clear Skies at 4 p.m.!!! PERFECT timing!
The neighbors really seemed to enjoy meeting each other, eating the delicious food (there was lots of it), and laughing at parts of the house such as the Dungeon and Elf Quarters. One of the elves actually made a late-night appearance.
Tuesday, October 9, 2012
Cleaning Maribel worked 9-1. I thought things were looking pretty good! Upon leaving she asked, “So HOW early should I come tomorrow to do the REST of the Cleaning?” Guess there is more to clean. She could have a full-time job here.
Doc graded papers, then left for school around Noon.
Neighbor Craig came over for a few minutes to chat.
At 3 pm. I was working on nametags for the next event. I heard what sounded like rain, yet I could tell here were clear skies overhead. I peeked through a crack in the cardboard on my office window and saw water ‘raining’ onto the patio. Eeks! I dashed outside to find a burst water hose. Thankfully it was a hose and not a sprinkler or supply line.
At 5 p.m. it was time to get out of the house. Went to a bulk supply store to get some of the items for the Open House. Found a penny in the parking lot, then a penny inside the store. (Coins #1&2)
Total: 2 Pennies
Monday, October 8, 2012
When I am busy working on projects or talking to people, I forget to take photos. Sorry about that.
This morning I tried to catch up on some bill paying, emails, and other projects. Doc had to go to school this afternoon for a Department Meeting and I needed to check on the Pomona house, so at 2 p.m. we headed out together. Just before getting to the freeway Doc quipped, “Any coins out your window?” Sure enough! There was a run-over nickel. (Coin #1)
When we arrived at school I was just going to drop off some of the “left behind” items from the party. But then I met one person I knew, and then another, then another… It was surprising how many of them said they might come to the Penny Palace Open House this weekend! I left a copy of the event printed Program in each of the Engineering Departments for persons who might not be able to attend.
I was busy chatting with one faculty member and as we walked past the vending machines, of course I looked around for pennies. He smiled and teased me, “Are you STILL doing that? Do you have your penny yet today?” “Yes, I am doing that. No penny yet today.” A moment later I kicked something and it rolled. I though it was trash. I glanced down to see a shiny penny rolling right up to the closed door of the room I was headed for! (Coin #2) My colleague was astonished. Me too!
I had dropped Doc off at 2:45 and was planning to retrieve him at 5:10. I didn’t leave campus unitl 4:30 to run my errands! There were so many people to “quickly visit”. I finally made it to the bank and the Pomona house to fill the ponds. Made a very short stop at the jeweler where Koko polished my Penny Pendant. Each time he does, it tarnishes again within a few days.
Fortunately Doc had plenty of work to do on campus, so he was not too upset with me for being an hour late.
Since we were too tired to do our weekly grocer shopping Sunday night, we did it tonight. At the first grocery store I spotted a penny in a check-out lane as I walked in, but there were too many people in between me and it. I checked on it a little while later. It was still there, but I still could not get to it. I did find another penny - a mushroom one. (Coin #3). Of course Doc and I checked-out using that lane and finally did claim that penny. (Coin #4). I paid using a credit card, so it was not MY change sitting there in the chute. Someone else did not bother to take their change - so I helped them. I grabbed it and did not open my hand until we were out of the store. There was a quarter, a dime, a nickel, and two pennies! A Hit for the Cycle in my hand! (Coins #5-9). While I was checking out, Doc found a penny at the coin counting machine. (Coin #10)
There was one penny at the next grocery store. (Coin #11)
By the time we arrived home it was 9 p.m. We fed the dogs and had a quick dinner of potluck leftovers. Doc was very tired but he still helped by sorting through the rolls of pennies I had obtained at the bank earlier today. I need to assemble more penny cards for the next Potluck and needed more shiny pennies.
Total: 11 Coins P (7), N (2), D (1), Q (1) = $0.52
Sunday, October 7, 2012
No alarm clock this morning! My body was quite sore and complaining, so it was good to spend a little extra time in bed. Doc wanted to go out to breakfast. I told him to open the fridge and look at all that leftover food! How could he want to go out? So we nibbled and then went out for coffee. Doc is still congested, so we made a stop at the pharmacy store for cold medicine. Doc found one penny there.
Two of the places we stopped this morning had blood pressure testing machines. My reading on the first machine was so low I did not believe it! I figured the device was faulty and took a reading at the second store. It was similar! Doc said “You are just wired differently”. “For the past few weeks you have been running in the fast lane each day on only 4-5 hours sleep each night and your BP is the best it has been in the past year or two!”
Doc and I had our coffee and calendar review session. We agreed to forego our typical Sunday night grocery shopping in consideration of the bags of leftovers in the fridge. We did spend a few minutes walking around the nearby gas station. I said, “Look Angels, I need to get home and work on the next event. Would you please cooperate here?” Instantly there was a penny nearby. I picked it up and Doc pointed to another one near me. I had not noticed that one. I walked over to the air pump corner. Carefully looked in that area. No coins. I turned around to walk back to the van and there was a gleaming penny where I had just walked!
Shortly after we returned home, Plumber Brian arrived! That was a surprise. He was there to connect the filter to the ice maker. That should be the last of his services.
This afternoon I designed and printed some Reminder Flyers for the Neighborhood Potluck. Met Neighbor Donna at 4:30 to deliver the +/- 70 flyers. Good exercise walking the streets.
This evening was more clean-up and preparations for the next function.
Total: 4 Pennies
Saturday, October 6, 2012
When that alarm went off at 6:30 a.m. I did not appreciate it. My body was wanting more than four hours of rest. By 7:10 a.m. the dogs were fed and Doc and I were out the door. Doc visited Subway for coffee and sandwiches while I went next door to the grocery store for toilet paper. We could not go home without today’s coin, so we took an indirect route back to the van. We collected a nickel, then a dime in the parking lot. (Coins #1&2) As we were driving away, I noted that we still needed a Penny for PENNY Tales. Doc said, “Keep your eyes open as we are leaving the parking lot.” I immediately looked out my window and spotted a very run-over penny! Sit-N-Find (Coin #3)
Maribel arrived at 8 a.m. to do last-minute cleaning. She worked for 3.5 hours until she had to leave for a wedding.
The 17 re-upholstered chairs which were expected earlier this week finally arrived at 9 a.m. They look great.
My mom arrived at 2 p.m. to help for the evening. She insisted upon creating centerpieces, so she went though the house looking for things to use. Major detour from my scheduled set-up times.
I had posted a sign on the Oven saying “Still trying to figure out what this device is used for”. So Greg and Terry showed me with their delicious tray of Baked Ziti.
|ME Department Persons|
The buffet table was set up in the Dining Room, coffee and tea at Doc’s Coffee Bar, beverages and appetizers out on the Patio, the punch bowl in the Family Room, and the dining tables outside on the patio and driveway.
The weather was perfect and the City lights were visible in the valley.
In a nutshell: People liked the Penny Palace”.
I’m glad we found today’s coins early this morning, because I never thought about Penny Finding the rest of the day.
Total: 3 Coins P (1), N (1), D (1), Q (0) = $0.16
Friday, October 5, 2012
With Doc’s co-workers arriving tomorrow, he was more motivated to get things done today! One of the first things was to hang “Doc’s Alley” sign over the coffee bar. Then he hung the “Elf Quarters” sign upstairs
|Upstairs Shades Hung|
At 9:50 a.m. Curtain Hanger Kevin arrived - a few minutes early. He worked at full speed for the next 4 hours. Drapery Brian arrived after 10 a.m. He supervised Kevin and drank coffee with Doc.
The next 4 hours were a blur of activity as we moved from room to room hanging all the window coverings in this first batch. (Some were not ready yet). What a difference a little bit of fabric makes! The window coverings really cut down on the blazing sun. The flooring is already showing sun damage. The window coverings also softened the look of the rooms and improved the room acoustics.
Moments after Kevin and Brian left, Cleaning Maribel arrived. For the next 5 hours we cleaned and moved and prepared. We set up tables and chairs, moved boxes and files, and cleaned!
I was expecting the 17 upholstered chairs at 5:30 p.m. When Jose called this morning he said he would deliver them at the end of the day. At 4 p.m. he called to say the chairs would not be ready today. He would work on them tonight and deliver them in the morning. That is really pushing it.
By the time Maribel left after 7 p.m. Doc and I were both hungry. Doc refused to do any more work until he had been fed. We hopped in the van and headed for dinner. Stopped just before getting on the freeway. Found a dime as I walked through the vacant Jacks drive-up window. (Coin #1). Then I found a penny at the car wash; Doc found two pennies there. (Coins #2-4)
I could not resist peeking in the 7-11 store. Five pennies there. (Coins #5-9).
We had a counter meal at a little Mediterranean café. Doc found one penny there (Coin #10).
When we got home, Doc was motivated to clean his office! Then he set up the coffee station for tomorrow’s Mechanical Engineering Annual Department Gathering.
Total: 10 Coins P (9), N (0), D (1), Q (0) = $0.19
Thursday, October 4, 2012
|Trash Box Painting|
Friend Kathy volunteered to help me for a few hours this morning. We cleaned the mailbox and put up a new display, painted the trash boxes, took up the Ramboard from the Aussie floor and more.
|New Mailbox Display|
Kathy left at noon because I had the “Stuff” to tackle and no one else can really do that. So for the rest of the day I worked on organizing “stuff”. And there were a few other things like finding staffing for the check-in table, speaking with the photographer, dealing with an overlooked invitation or ones which had been returned from the post office, etc.
The rental tables and chairs arrived this morning. That was a relief since when I called earlier this week to confirm my order, they had it scheduled for delivery on the 14th versus 4th!
|Hang my Shelves|
This afternoon Pest Control Technician Juan came to conquer the ant problem. He was a delight. He said after visiting the Penny Palace, he was inspired. He believed that he too could attain a house like this. He wanted his fiancée to see this, so I gave him a Penny Card and an invitation to the Open House.
Doc arrived home at 8:30 p.m. and asked me about a coin for today? Oops! I was focused on the house. We hopped in the van and headed out. The first stop was at a CVS store to get some picture hangers. None of the kind we needed, but two pennies by the pharmacy counter. Nice! (Coins #1 & 2)
We dashed to the Home Depot store arriving, there at 8:55 p.m. Found the picture hangers we were seeking. Upon exiting the store, a large white car pulled up. I thought the driver was a stranger asking Doc for directions. It was our son Stephen! So Doc hopped in Steve’s car and hitchhiked to Starbucks.
I found a penny as I walked alone back to our car. (Coin #3). Everyone knows coins can not be found in the dark! Dog Sparky was in the back seat of the van asking “Where is my Papa?”
I went to the grocery store for punch ingredients. No coins there! Doc found a penny on his coffee run. (Coin #4)
11:45 p.m. Doc and I reviewed the Open House video which student Kevin brought to school this afternoon. We are trying to display it on Doc’s big screen TV. No luck on the first attempt. Doc has some ideas to try tomorrow. … We have only 31 hours until Show Time!
Total: 4 Pennies
Wednesday, October 3, 2012
This morning one goal was to find the Laundry Room counter. The surface had not been seen since it was installed. That was actually accomplished by 10 a.m. Next I was going to work on the Aussie room, but I never made it that far. There were emails and other things with which to deal.
The window coverings are to arrive Friday - nothing like the last minute. Our newly re-upholstered chairs are to arrive Friday as well.
At 1:30 p.m. I left the house. First stop was the sign shop for the vinyl lettering (Scullery, Dungeon, etc.) Then a quick stop at a home improvement store for more spray paint. After paying for my merchandise I spotted a small portion of a penny peeking out from under a cabinet. It had actually been painted when the cabinet was painted. It took me about 5 minutes and various tools to pry it out of there. (Coin #1) Doc noted that would translate to an income of 12 cents per hour! Two cashiers were witness to the comedy. After that, a penny appeared on the floor as I was leaving the store. (Coin #2)
I stopped at the Print Shop and then a few minutes at the Pomona house to fill the ponds.
|Doc and Plumber Bryon|
The next stop was a bulk supply store for all the disposable items (plates, cups, utensils, table cloths, napkins, etc.) I did not see any coins while waiting in the check-out line. I made my purchase and turned to look behind me. There was a shiny penny! Mushroom coin. (Coin #3)
Phantom Plumber arrived at 5:30. I had a list of 3 tasks for him. Those took him maybe a total of 7-8 minutes. He was here for 45 minutes. That’s what is so great about this project. The subs are all fantastic people and we enjoy time with them.
On the way home from school, Doc stopped for gas. After filling his tank, Doc was “nearly blinded” by a new penny shining in the sun in front of his van.
Got an email from Realtor Adrie. Things are proceeding well with sale of Pomona house. Buyer is requesting a two week extension on escrow to complete inspections and loan appraisal.
For the past two nights from midnight to 3 a.m., former student Kevin and I have been working on the Open House video. Hopefully it is done now and tonight we can get more sleep!
Total: 4 Pennies
Tuesday, October 2, 2012
Doc was looking really miserable today. He got up, showered, ate, and took a nap. He went to school and said he was only able to lecture for about half his class periods. He arrived home at 9 p.m. just totally wiped out.
|Scholarship Recipient Jacqueline|
After Maribel left, I took care of a few emails and things, then showered, changed into business attire and got on the road in rush hour traffic. It was over 100 degrees today, so being out in the car was not fun. Hot days like this make me seriously consider getting a newer car. (Please don’t let Pippy know that I said that. She has been a faithful companion through 20 years of my escapades).
The highlight of today was the President’s Council Scholarship Dinner. Each year 25 students are awarded scholarships established by various benefactors. One of those scholarships was established in honor of Doc’s parents, Otto and Lois. Doc and I have the honor of having dinner with the recipient and their family. This year Doc was in class lecturing, so our student, Jacqueline and her family did not get to meet him. I had a great time getting to know a little bit about the family. Good people. Nice to see the scholarship go to them.
Doc had found one penny when he stopped for a burger on the way to school. Then he found a dime between his classes by the vending machines.
Total: 3 Coins P (2), N (0), D (1), Q (0) = $0.12
Monday, October 1, 2012
There were so many things to do, I wasn’t sure where to start.
|Chairs Bound for Upholstery Shop|
Doc helped load the remaining batch of chairs into Pippy before he left for school. I was to take this batch to the upholsterer and retrieve the other batch he promised would be completed by last Friday.
|Painting Trash Boxes|
At school Doc spent a few hours in the Media Studio working with a student on the Open House Video. When he arrived home and we finally viewed it last night, it did not work on the TV, but it did play in the computer. On a scale of 1-10, I would give it a 6 (which is a failing grade). Ugg.
At 11 a.m. I headed out. I had two hours to complete my errands (one hour of which was driving time). The Pest Control Service was expected from 1-6 p.m. Again, we need to get rid of the ants in the kitchen.
In those two hours there were several stops. I dropped off the ten chairs at the upholsterer. The other batch of chairs had not even been started yet! I dropped off the donation of clothes and household goods at the thrift store. There was a shiny penny gleaming near the donation truck which I spotted before even getting out of Pippy. As I retrieved the penny, I found a dime next to it. (Coins #1&2).
The printed Open House programs were ready at the print shop, so I obtained those. They look really nice. I stopped for 20 minutes at the Pomona house to fill the water ponds. That was the lowest I had ever see the water levels.
|Pest Control Quarterly Service|
I was expecting George at the Penny Palace at 4 p.m. At 3:45 the doorbell rang. It was Son Stephen with two ice chests to loan me for the events. That was a surprise. At 3:47 the doorbell rang again. It was the pest control technician. Time to talk about ant slaying.
Shortly before 4 p.m. George, Anna, and Jose arrived to hang ceiling fans and lights. The next 2.5 hours were spent with them.
|Ceiling Fan Install|
The rest of the evening (until 3 a.m.) was spent trying to improve the video, unpack, polish, clean, prepare, make signs, etc. Just 4 days to go until the First Gathering.
Total: 2 Coins P (1), N (0), D (1), Q (0) = $0.11