Life, love, adventure are home's decor

2013-02-24T00:00:00Z Life, love, adventure are home's decorGabrielle Fimbres Special To The Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star

Life is an adventure for Joanne Good. Take a look around the home she shares with Ted Good, her husband of 62 years. Memories of the life they built together are woven into the fabric of their comfortable home.

Traveling through Europe with their two children in a green Porsche. Summers spent in their Minnesota log cabin. All that Joanne Good has loved in life is evident throughout her home.

Now, as she serves as a 24/7 caregiver for her husband, Good is fortified by the memories that surround her.

"Everything has a memory," said Good, a retired interior designer who lives with her husband in SaddleBrooke, just north of Catalina.

The Goods traveled the globe before Ted suffered a stroke 35 years ago at age 55, and retired from Sears Foundation in Chicago. Joanne Good, who studied theater in college, had raised her children and was returning to theatrical pursuits when Ted fell ill.

"I thought I'd better get a day job," Good recalled. She got a degree in interior design, and launched her new career at age 55. She was a member of the American Society of Interior Designers before the Goods retired to SaddleBrooke 15 years ago.

She loved making the homes of others beautiful. Now she enjoys filling every corner of her home with memories of her many adventures.

"I like things that make you happy when you look at them," she said, as snow fell outside her living room window in large, soft flakes.

Among her favorite pieces are two folding space dividers, one in the family room, one in the master bedroom. Good turned the basic pieces into memories of the family's travels. Using Mod Podge, she covered them with maps, photos, postcards, tickets and other memorabilia from their journeys.

"We brought our children to Europe three times," said this great-grandmother.

"They make me happy when I walk by," she said of the customized dividers. "It brings back a memory."

Good is always working on a project, and there isn't much she cannot do with a little paint and fabric. From his wheelchair, Ted Good watches his wife work.

"Just try it," is Good's motto. "If it doesn't work out, so what. What have you got to lose?"

Fabric is an important feature in each room. Good uses yards of fabric and even tablecloths to create draperies, valances, covered headboards, throw pillows, chair coverings and lampshades.

"I have shown all of my granddaughters how to make curtains," she said.

Good started painting about 20 years ago, and her art fill the home. Her paintings are very personal - a still life of her grandmother's treasured silver coffee service purchased in 1912, angels in a desert sky, a glimpse of her dream bedroom.

In her dining room, Good painted the words "Life is an adventure" in English, Spanish, French, Italian and Norwegian.

Family history is found in every room. Good, who has no fondness for traditional end tables, uses a metal Railway Express Agency delivery truck that was her husband's childhood toy, circa 1930, as an end table. Her mother's toddler chair and her own silver baby cup adorn the room.

A silver box embellished with angels holds treasures on the coffee table, including a handwritten letter from her mother. Photos of loved ones fill a silver bowl.

Down the hallway, a third bedroom opens into a casita that the Goods added on. Some of the plans were drawn up by Joanne Good.

Included in the guest quarters are a living room, full kitchen and private patio with a stunning mountain view.

Good added a whimsical white chandelier with red accents over the kitchen sink, making washing dishes a bit more tolerable. The chandelier is stunning against the red wall and matching red window shade.

Memorabilia from World War II, where Ted Good served as a B-24 pilot, are found in the casita.

Joanne Good finds great joy in her handiwork in the master bedroom. She used fabric and paint to coordinate the retreat, complete with a cozy table and chairs - a perfect spot for an afternoon cup of tea.

Always the practical child of the Depression, Good uses inexpensive items that she personalizes to dress up a room. She created a stand for her television in the bedroom.

Good topped two file cabinets with a wooden board, covered with fabric that drapes to the floor and topped with glass for a pretty place for the television to sit.

She purchased two inexpensive white armoires and projected a floral image that she painted. A white chest at the end of her bed is painted with her father's family crest, as well as a painting of the family's log cabin in Minnesota.

But perhaps most striking in the bedroom is a brightly-colored mural that was painted in 1978 in the Good's Chicago home by muralist Betty Sitbon, before she became well-known.

The mural was painted on wallpaper, and the Goods were able to move it to their home here.

The mural tells the story of their lives. Joanne Good, in only her birthday suit, looks out her boudoir window at a young, debonair Ted. Playing in the distance are their children, Stephen and Susie. Far off in the distance is their Minnesota cabin, and an airplane, representing Ted's love of flying. Included in the mural are family photo albums, passports, favorite books and other cherished items.

"All of those things make me happy to look at," Good said.

Another mural moved from Chicago is a scene from a family expedition through Europe in a green Porsche.

The memories embedded in the home serve as a bit of diversion as Good provides full-time care for her husband.

"These are the best times of our lives," she said.

On StarNet: See more photos of this home at azstarnet.com/gallery

Contact local freelance writer Gabrielle Fimbres at gfimbres@comcast.net

Copyright 2014 Arizona Daily Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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