By Kitty Golding
Kitty & Company will be conducting a series of short interviews with Chelsea Residents for 52 weeks, bringing to light differing personalities and design styles in our community. Perhaps you will meet someone new through these weekly interviews or perhaps it will be YOU! Stay tuned and follow us each week – we now introduce you to Mrs. Jayelynn DeJohn.
What is your current profession? I am an escrow officer for Liberty Title and have been in this field for 11 ½ years.
Your family members: Bill (husband) and our children, Will, Rachel, Amber and Kyle. We also have a total of 10 grandkids with 1 on way!
People think of me as: Outgoing but really I am an introvert. I am good with small groups, but in large groups I fade into the wall.
When did you move to Chelsea and where did you live prior to coming to Chelsea? I grew up in Rives Junction, Michigan and aside from living there, we lived in Buffalo, Wyoming. We moved back to Michigan, and bought our current Chelsea home in 2012. We loved Wyoming, but grandbabies were calling us!
What do you love about where you currently live? We are blessed to have good neighbors, we love the rural life, the quiet, and the wildlife, especially the sandhill cranes and deer.
If you could have a second home anywhere, where would it be? Wherever it would be, it would be on a lake! Complete with outdoor activities.
What three words describe your style? Warm, comfortable and inviting – a “lived in home” is what I like.
Who most influenced your life? I lost my mother at age 17, so my Gramma was a huge influence in my young life. We helped her clean and can and decorate. She was always welcoming people in her home and didn’t let you leave without feeding you dessert and coffee. My grandpa taught me how to shake hands look people in the eye. Many manners, values and character were taught to me by my grandparents.
What are you most inspired by in your design/decor? Nature for sure. We love natural elements, we have a lot of gardens and a big front porch that serves as a huge outdoor room, We spend a lot of time outside, so naturally I am inspired by nature.
As you think about the home in which you grew up, what elements did you like and do you think you have incorporated some of them in your own home? I would say that the item I have incorporated in my home that I grew up with are antiques. My mom had a love of vintage furnishings. She would take us to Flea Markets and then do some serious refinishing. She also was quite the artist, and would paint beautiful flowers and themes on furnishings. I do love a good find and old things, in fact, my sister in law stated that, ”I love sick furniture and I make it better”. That’s a fitting description for me.
When entering your home, how do you want it to feel? I want people to feel at home , like it is their home, and not stuffy.
What is one element or trend in design you do not like? I do not like the European contemporary minimalist look.
What is the biggest design issue you struggle with? Choosing the right color for the walls and the right drapery for the windows.
Have you ever built a new home or remodeled an existing one? Our home in Rives Junction, was taken to the studs and built again plus we added an addition at the same time. The remodel had been going on for too long, and I was starting to feel like Eva Gabor in Green Acres! We were cooking on an electric skillet on top of a piano and doing the dishes in the bathub! It all ended well – and we loved what we did!
If you were moving and could only select one item from your home to keep, what would it be? My Grandma’s trunk that has childhood memories and photos with much sentimental value!
Which room in your home gets the most use? Living and kitchen, we have an open concept and the island is the main gathering spot.
No room is complete without: A pillow and a blanket! (comfort!)
If you are a pet owner, how has that influenced your choices in design, if it has? We are and the only thing we have done different is buying leather furniture- because of it’s easier to clean.
Has any local venue particularly caught your eye - if so why? We love The Chelsea Antique Mall, attached to the bowling alley, and Chelsea Antiques on the north side of town. They now have a whole room with some interesting taxidermy mounts.
If you were given a $1000 to buy a piece of art, what would it be? I would buy a full turkey mount and have a perfect location for it in my home up by staircase.
What did you do to pass the time during the COVID-19 State shutdown? I worked more than ever - we were never shut down. I never had any time off, it was 10-12 hours a day.
A few of your favorite things!
Movie: Major Pain and Bullet Proof Monk.
Favorite Historical Place You have visited : Panama City Beach, Florida
Music: Any music that has 3 or 4 part harmony - and mostly country and gospel.
TV Show: Big Bang Theory
Meals: Mexican and Pizza
Travel Destination (on your bucket list): Ireland
Favorite thing to Collect: salt and pepper shakers
Hobbies: camping, fishing, bikes and motorcycles, snowmobiling
Item on a bookshelf: Prohibition bookend set ( see photo!)
Pets: Frankie – our 4 year old , Bichon Frise
Kitty’s Note: Jayelynn is our friendly neighbor that puts up with our barking dog and roosters crowing at all times, plus our boys running around and whatever other sounds come from the Golding property. Her gardens are so pretty – this year they planted a spectacular double row of gigantic sunflowers that grew the length of their driveway. Their long front porch is decorated with comfy seating and colorful flowering vines, and inside is exactly what she described – a comfortable inviting home.