Dinner at Betty and Denny’s Amazing 8 Sided House

12/22/13 Sunday at Clermont, FL (Orlando-TT)

We got to church even sooner this time, so we snatched a parking spot in the shade, right in front of the “Cheap Tickets” store. Lots of places down here to buy attraction tickets (like Disney) from folks who are too tired to use them, then the store sells them at a big discount for us new tourists. We then stopped at the nearby Publix for eggs and bread, then at the Wilco Hess station for gas.

Back at the rig we rushed through lunch and got on the road, with Naomi/Phil, by 1:30. We managed to arrived at Betty/Denny’s place by 2:30 pm.

They live in Longwood (we had to drive through Orlando – congested – to get there), in the city yet their lot was so wooded you’d barely see it. In fact, we didn’t. Drove blissfully right past it.

The amazing 8 sided house that Denny built in 1978:

1 Betty House 2a betty houseAbove you see one of the 8 sides.  You can also get a glimpse of the woods that hide it from the world.  The photo below is of the kitchen, what you see when you first walk in.  Beyond the counter is the dining area and living room (2 more “sides” worth).  Here Denny (left) is explaining to Phil (middle) and John (right) how the air is exchanged with a whole house fan.  You can see the vents at top right.  Notice the stone fireplace beyond, built by Denny of course.  The center of the house has the maintenance room, laundry room and bathrooms; a circle in the center.  Very efficient.

3 Betty house

Next is the bedroom  for their 3 boys.  Denny built these Murphy beds that are also a desk and the box that holds the pillow end up is where they kept their clothes (instead of a chest of drawers).  There are even holders in that box for their underwear.

4 Betty house 5 betty house

Here is their bedroom and as you can see, they put a window between there (where Denny’s office area is at the other  end of their bedroom) and the kitchen, so they can talk and pass through things as they work in their respective domains.

8 betty house 9 betty house

Here is one of 2 adjoining bathrooms (joined by pocket doors): one is accessed by the boys, the other by their folks.  Naomi is busy snapping her own pictures here.

7 betty house

Outside images: sundeck with hot tub, cabin for paying guests, canal where they park the boats to get to the Lake.  This is how the boys went to school.   They’d take a long time returning because they water skied back.

10 betty house 11 betty house 12 betty house

After enjoying a guided tour of their fascinating home and wooded lot, we were treated to a film fest of their visual experiences of Alaska and healthy hor d’oeuvres. Now that we were full, we got talking, and soon were invited to the feast of bread, salad and stir fry. Yum!

Betty Denny Dinner


Naomi is at the end of the table, Phil next, then you see Denny.

Wait, that’s not all! Once it was dark Betty/Denny guided us to their son’s house close by that is on Lake Brantley to watch the neighborhood “Boat Parade”. Lovely lights. Unfortunately the bugs were out enjoying US as well! Some people weren’t too bothered but they were all over me, so Betty directed us to Ryan’s screened porch, where we could enjoy a fan and the sights on the lake.

In time the boats grew fewer so we headed back to Betty/Denny’s, then shared hugs and handshakes before taking off for home.

We had such a BIG day, yet when John got home he turned on the TV so we got entranced watching “The Sound of Music”, then went to bed at 11 pm.

About Patricia Elser

I've always loved the loose, flowing, transparent look of watercolors, of Chinese paintings and their calligraphy, but alas, no watercolor classes were available when I was in school, so that interest remained buried until my children were grown. Even then, I was afraid that I couldn't really paint, so upon my sister's advice, I actually started to take classes. I signed up for every class available, determined to learn no matter how afraid I was. I came upon a teacher, Stan Miller, who inspired me, who opened the door to success in watercolor. I love to look at beautiful images. I want to capture them forever. All my life, photography was how I gathered images of the beauty I saw. Thanks to all that photography, I enjoy composing pictures, especially up close. Watercolors allow me to add more of me in their translation of that beauty. My paintings reflect my love for music and dance, with their rhythm and flow. I am fascinated by the play of light, so it appears in my pictures as drama for they are filled with darks and lights. Maybe it's the challenge, maybe it's the beauty, but now, when a work comes together, it fills my soul.
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