Friday, June 15, 2012

My Anti-Depression Adventures

Sometimes my husband takes me by the hand and leads me out of the house.  If he didn't I wouldn't get out as often as I do; which believe me it isn't very much.

He "informed" me about a month ago that on June 14th he had taken the day off so we could drive down to Eldon, Iowa.  I asked, "What is in Eldon, Iowa?"  Actually I may not have asked that, but it sounds good to say I did.

I do remember, however, that he said he was getting me up at 4 AM to begin our road trip and he would not give up until I was out of bed.  Oh dear!  About once a week he would remind me of this upcoming adventure and that I had to get out of bed. 

June 14th arrived and so did 4 AM.  Much to his surprise I was already awake.  In reality I had never gotten to sleep so I had no trouble getting up.  Insomnia.

I know you are not going to believe what was in Eldon, Iowa (other than the American Gothic House used in the famous painting by Grant Wood).  Okay here it is....drum roll please....

Tom Arnold and Rosanne Barr's mansion they started building then abandoned about 15 years ago when they divorced.  I guess Tom grew up in Ottumwa, Iowa and he wanted a home near there.  Two local radio personalities were broadcasting from the site and invited their listeners to visit.

Now...only my husband could get me down to the boonies to see Tom and Rosanne's house.  I honestly could care less; still don't as a matter fact.  But we did have fun.

Here are some pictures of the dilapidated mansion; and it would have been fabulous no doubt.  Photos do not do the house size justice.  It was HUGE!  And it sits on 1340 acres of land.  Fifteen years in the harsh Midwest elements, however, has taken its toll.  It looks more like its been sitting there 30 years instead of 15.

Dilapidated Mansion

The south side of the house was especially amazing because of all the gorgeous windows!  It would have been an incredible view out over their pond.  Oh, but the heating bill they would have had!

All the amazing windows!

The most hilarious part of the whole adventure was the "cab" service.  Only in Iowa would a bunch of people show up to look at a defunct Hollywood couple's almost home.  And only in Iowa would the taxi service be pick up trucks!  I said to my husband, "And we wonder why Hollywood depicts us in the movies as a bunch of hicks!"

Country cab service

The next stop was the American Gothic House.  As a new artist, I LOVE art!  American Gothic has never been a favorite of mine, however.  Patrick and I did get to see the original at the Des Moines Art Center several years ago.  It was part of a temporary exhibit.  We waited in line for over an hour and it was worth it to see a famous painting by an Iowa artist.

So here we are at the the American Gothic House!

Pitchfork and all!
I was exhausted from not sleeping and dozed in the back seat for an hour of the two hour drive home.  But we had a really fun day and depression was no where to be found! We made memories and that's so important.  I forget how important sometimes and was grateful to be reminded.

Just to update you on my most recent application of wet paint...here are a couple of pages from my art journal.  I love these!

I would really encourage you to take some Anti-Depression Adventures!  You don't even have to take a 2 hour road trip but find an adventure.  Its worth it.  It will help you feel a bit better and when you're depressed...every bit helps!  Wouldn't you say?

And don't forget ~ when depressed apply wet paint!       

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