The Herald Bulletin

Afternoon Update

Homes

March 1, 2014

Oriental flair

Home features special Japanese items

Trish Janutolo may have only spent 3 1/2 years in Japan, but the experience touched her life in such a way that she remains surrounded by the culture through her home accents and furnishings. She returned over 40 years ago, but a visitor would imagine her Asian encounter was much more recent.

“The things that mean the most to me are from special places or special people,” said Janutolo, librarian at Nicholson Library, Anderson University. “I came back to the United States by ocean liner, so I could bring a lot of pieces with me.”

The local college drew her north from Alabama after she graduated high school. Tri-S programs drew her overseas. Her first stay in Japan lasted eight weeks.

“I loved it,” she recalled fondly. “Eventually the missionary board asked if I would go there and teach at the junior/senior high school for girls in Tokyo.”

She taught conversational English but didn’t speak much Japanese.

“I knew enough to get myself into trouble but not well enough to get myself out,” she added with a laugh. “But I could understand most of what other people said.”

Each accent, wall hanging and piece of furniture with Oriental flair sparks a story. Her favorite sits center stage in the living room and is similar to a coffee table – except it literally houses a pot. This naga hibachi offers a space to insert charcoal and heat water.

“I had spent the day in antique stores with a friend looking for one to bring back with me,” she said. “I didn’t find one and we were telling her mom about it. She opened the closet door and pulled this one out. It had belonged to her husband’s family and she said that while he was alive they had to use it. When he died, she pushed it into the closet.”

Not only did the woman refuse payment, but added: “I’ll pay you to take it.”

Next to the piano in the entry way hangs a jizai. Old homes had a hole in the floor with a fire that warmed the house and heated utensils. Over the hole would hang a jizai, which is a long, cast-iron hook. Pots and kettles hung on the jizai.

“A couple that knew I loved old things went to their family home and brought it back for me,” said Janutolo. “It is really special to me because I know that it is original, that it was used and whose family used it.”

While some items were gifts, others were scored during dumpster-diving excursions.

“On certain days you could put anything you didn’t want by the street,” she said. “My housemate and I would walk through the neighborhood and check the trash. We found all kinds of interesting things.”

One such item is a bamboo oil lamp atop the piano.

Some pieces are re-gifted. Very near to her heart is a crystal bowl given to Ann Smith by a couple in their eighties who had received it as a wedding present. Both Janutolo and Smith knew and loved the couple and Smith promised to leave the treasure to Janutolo upon her death.

“A couple of years ago, Ann just said: ‘I don’t think I’ll wait till I die’ and she gave me the bowl,” she said. “Ann is pretty special.”

This bowl sits near two Hakata dolls whose appearances remind her of that couple.     

Janutolo and her husband of 35 years, Blake, the dean of Science and Humanities at Anderson University, have shared the home near the university for 30 years. They have returned to Japan twice to visit and renew friendships.

“Japan is a beautiful country,” she said. “I felt comfortable, safe and I enjoyed my work.”

Each week, Emma Bowen Meyer features a Madison County home. If you know of a home that should be showcased, send an e-mail to emmagoldiemeyer@yahoo.com.

1
Text Only
Homes
  • FEA HB0727 Homes 0113 Storage solution The key to creating a beautiful home on a budget is to look beyond the intended purpose of an item, and beyond its appearance. Instead, check for sturdiness of the frame, and the functionality of the components.

    July 26, 2014 5 Photos

  • FEA HB0706 Homes 0206 Reduce, reuse, recycle When companies in the food industry are finished with a 50-gallon barrel they use to store and ship perishable items, Leslie White knows just what to do with it. Rather than see it shipped off to a landfill, she outfits the barrel to be an instrument of conservation.

    July 5, 2014 1 Photo

  • FEA HB0629 horizontal place4 Memory box project can enhance home decor One of my passions is decorating our home with personal items celebrating family. I also love doing projects that are easy, fast and cheap. Creating a memory box combines both of those interests.

    June 28, 2014 6 Photos

  • FEA HB0626 Elliott home Garden Walk shows off greenery Both of Ellen Elliott’s parents were gardeners when she was growing up. Her mom and dad taught her all about growing tomatoes, peppers, green beans and other vegetables and plants when she was a small child.

    June 26, 2014 4 Photos

  • FEA HB0622 homes_0173 Creating their garden Excited to be on the 16th Annual Tour of the Madison County Master Gardener Association, Sandy Hampton has been working hard to ensure everything is perfect for this Saturday.

    June 21, 2014 5 Photos

  • FEA HB0608 1418 Condo living Since Herb and Betty Pruett were drawn to this area via Anderson University – and they met walking the campus byways – it is only fitting they have retired to University Village, the condominiums with a direct connection to the school.

    June 7, 2014 5 Photos

  • FEA HB0701 Homes 1169 Family treasures Follow Betty Tufts through her home and she will lift treasure after treasure that prompts a story of family. From knickknacks that were given to sketches that were drawn to features of the house that were installed, the pieces of her home are the calling cards of the ones who love her.

    May 31, 2014 6 Photos

  • FEA - HB0525 - HOMES 1290 Just a few tweaks left in renovation of old house At times, I thought the day would never come. On other occasions, it seemed like the finish line was just within my sights only to move forward with each step I took.

    May 24, 2014 7 Photos

  • FEA HB0511 Homes 1167 Making room for the music When George and Norma Smith built their home in 1967, they had family in mind. The location provided the opportunity for their three sons to attend Lapel Community Schools and the floor plan ensured that each one could claim a bedroom of his own.

    May 10, 2014 5 Photos

  • FEA HB0504 Homes 1134(1) Retirement living When Dr. J. G. Pierce, a local dentist for 40 years, decided it was time to leave his home in favor of a retirement community, he set his eye on Primrose.

    May 3, 2014 6 Photos

Galleries
Photographers’ pick
Featured Ads
More Resources from The Herald Bulletin
AP Video
Raw: Japanese Soldiers Storm Beach in Exercises Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Two Women Narrowly Avoid Being Hit by Train In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast New Sanctions on Key Sectors of Russian Economy Crayola Announces Family Attraction in Orlando US Ready to Slap New Sanctions on Russia Kerry: Not Worried About Israeli Criticism Boater Rescued From Edge of Kentucky Dam Girl Struck by Plane on Florida Beach Dies Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre House to Vote on Slimmed-down Bill for Border Looming Demand Could Undercut Flight Safety Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Helium debate
Helium
Poll

Now that Andrew Luck is getting ready to start the third year of his NFL career, did the Colts make the right decision to release Peyton Manning and turn the offense over to Luck?

Yes, the future is bright.
No, the Colts would have won another Super Bowl by now if they had kept Manning.
Don't know; don't care
     View Results