Homes

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When Mel Fros builds a home, it’s no ordinary house. It has thought behind it; a purpose, function, sustainability and meaning to the structure. It also has great beauty. He’s an artist, and he wrestles with his art until it is just right. The bungalow in Urbana is no exception.

It started out as a lesson for his son, Daniel, an aspiring master builder.

   Letha Kramer was driving around one day in Urbana. She was going to an estate sale. She might find a treasure or two. 

I t can be an artistic endeavor to bring an older home into the now. Great creativity is needed to keep the original style of the house but renovate it so it fits into today’s world.

Laura Dawson’s parents were antiques dealers. That’s more than likely where she developed her love of design.

 

“We went to antique shows all the time,” she said from her Champaign home.

 

Throughout her home, there is a theme of traditional, modern and industrial.

 

Clark-Lindsey residents Becky Hanson and Waynona Brown were chatting on “cookie day” in the facility’s common area. They were there for the freshly baked cookies, coffee, conversation and companionship. Both have been at Clark-Lindsey for upwards to 20 years.

 

 

“All these years and never once was I ever mistreated,” Hanson said, adding that she has always been treated with kindness and compassion at Clark-Lindsey.

 

 

Dining

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What is “slow food?” It conjures up all kinds of images, but the correct one is that it is the opposite of “fast food.” The roots of slow food come from Italy, where journalist Carlo Petrini became outraged over the opening of a McDonald’s franchise in Rome. Concerned about the impact on Rome’s culture, he organized protesters who held bowls of penne. They shouted, “We don’t want fast food — we want slow food!” The slow food movement was born. 

 Mohammed AL-Heeti knew everyone was sad about Strawberry Fields closing.

 

“I remember many years ago when I came here from Iraq, we went there. Many were upset. They weren’t making money,” he said. “July 2014 we started visiting then. The concept of us buying Strawberry Fields was an idea.”

 

The Champaign Farmer’s Market
Come taste the difference

      The word Pekara literally means bakery in the Serbian language.
      Plus, it’s actually pronounced: Peck-uh-rah in Serbian.
      No matter how it’s pronounced Ruzica “Seka” Cuk cares that the products at Pekara are simple, clean, real and delicious.
      Seka is the owner of Pekara Bakery & Bistro, located at 116 North Neil Street in the heart of Champaign for ten years. It is open Monday through Saturday from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Sakanaya is a Japanese restaurant in Campustown that offers something different from the many fast-food options.

Owner Jin Park said he had long wanted to open a restaurant in Champaign when he met Tommy Lim, who is now Sakanaya’s chef. The two opened the higher-end sushi and ramen restaurant in November 2013.

“Everything is cafeteria-style (in Campustown),” Park said. “I wanted to give a better dining experience to students.”

The appearance of the restaurant at 403 E. Green St. stands out as well, with a wood-paneled exterior and a modern industrial feel inside.

Gardens

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Phil Lovett said that it’s fairly easy to have a great lawn.
“I’m just a regular guy, and if I can have a fantastic lawn, anybody can,” he said.
Lovett of Mahomet, At Home in Central Illinois’ go-to “lawn guy” says it’s not that hard to keep everything in the yard healthy and looking good during that summer heat. Lovett gave tips to At Home readers last summer and even showed them how to build a budget-friendly sprinkling system themselves. He said keeping a healthy lawn just takes a little forethought, water and fertilizer.

Central Illinois has come to life this spring.

   John and Judy Chesnut’s farm hums with life this time of year. The vast yard, with berm after berm, flowers beds in every nook and cranny and the vast pasture and grazing land for the     quarter horses — and one pretty paint — seem like a world all their own.  

The yard extraordinaire
 Phil Lovett takes the guesswork out of a perfect lawn

Artists

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   John-Paul Buzard realized his lifelong dream when he opened Buzard Pipe Organ Builders in Champaign in 1985. And on paper, he’s been in the industry since high school and college, when he apprenticed as a technician. 

When children’s author Alice B. McGinty was younger, she never really thought of herself as a writer.

“I loved reading, though,” she said. “I loved books.”

She enjoyed classics like “Charlotte’s Web” and anything from Dr. Seuss.

“Now, here I am, a working writer,” McGinty said.

Working writer indeed. She has authored over 40 children’s books.

“Well, counting the leveled readers, I have written over 100 books,” she explained.

Why pay for a knock-off when the real thing is as affordable?

That’s exactly what many do when decorating their home. They go to the local bigbox store and buy a framed print or an unoriginal niknak for a table.

“People think that original paintings and other pieces of original art are outrageously expensive,” Carolyn Baxley said. “They can come here, to the Cinema Gallery and purchase a true original.”

The Pond Dude
Chris’ Water Gardens -escape with waterscapes
      
      When Chris Sturdyvin does something, he dives right in and he is in deep.
      The day after he completed his high school senior football season, he took a job with IGA.
      “I finished the Friday night game, got up the next Saturday morning and reported for work. I stayed there for 15 years. I was a butcher, and I was doing well at it, too,” he said as he stood on his two-story deck in rural Homer.

    When Brion Kerlin sees an old silver spoon or fork, he sees raw material and endless possibilities.  
    “Just call me the Happy Fork Bender,” Kerlin said from his Urbana home and workshop.
    Kerlin makes jewelry and other pieces of art for his business called Spoonforkcreations. He can be seen every Saturday morning, from May to November at the Urbana Farmer’s Market on The Square, where he sets up shop and sells his products. It makes him really happy when customers enjoy his work.
    “It’s almost as good as money,” he said.

Ideas

Ideas

Well, it’s Tuesday in the summer, so it can only mean one thing- The Land Connection’s Champaign Farmer’s Market! Yes, that’s right, the market, also known as TLC Champaign Market, is back and in full swing every Tuesday from 4 to 7 p.m. at the corner of Neil and Main Sts. in the ever hopping, downtown Champaign.

     Cheryl Sizer is one of those amazing women that juggles both career and home. This private account manager for Glaxo Smith Kline has been educating doctors and clients for twelve years. Before that her career was special education- both as a case worker for the Mahomet-Seymour School District and assistant director of special education for rural Champaign County.

Welcome to our first Day Trip around Central Illinois! We decided we needed to dust ourselves off and get out into the fresh air, enjoy some ice cream and gaze at the stars!

 

Upcycling. It’s a new word for a new year. Upcycling has become a new phenomenon, too. In fact, it’s not even a real word — just yet.

Walking into Bohemia is like when Dorothy first opened the door and stepped into Oz. It’s truly breathtaking. There are pops of color and interesting merchandise in every direction of the Urbana store. In some areas of the store, it looks more like an art gallery than a vintage shop.

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Let me know how this worked for you, fellow Carpet Goddesses!! If you have cleaning or household tips, send them to me at bbroihahn@news-gazette.com.