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About Rancho Reubidoux


Rancho Reubidoux is the name of this blog and where I live with my partner, Paul, and our chihuahuas, Frito and Inky (that’s Pucci, our previous dog in the photo above). It’s at the base of Mt. Rubidoux in Riverside, California. Our house is a small, western-style ranch made of cinder block and built in 1952. While the house is small, the lot it sits on is huge, allowing me plenty of space in which to indulge my out-of-control decorating and design impulses both inside and out. The purpose of this blog is show and tell about various projects, endeavors and designs I’ve accomplished here. My idea was to twist the idea of the old west/ranch house ideal and move it more toward the western style I remembered from having grown up in the area. Of course, mixed in with what I love now in decorating and design trends. It’s about the mix, the remix, recycling and making it up as I go along… It’s also about junk collecting, thrift store shopping and flea marketeering. It’s about doing it on the cheap but still making it look like a million bucks. Okay, a thousand bucks, but still. It’s about making this place we live at not only beautiful but fun and exciting to look at and sharing it with others. I hope you enjoy it and will comment on what we’ve got going!

86 Comments leave one →
  1. Elizabeth permalink
    August 24, 2009 9:14 pm

    That’s a cute picture of you, Paul and Pucci. I think your Facebook photo also features you wearing a hat. Do you ever photograph sans headwear? If there was a thought bubble for Pucci, it might say, “Get this camera off me.” LOL

  2. August 30, 2009 6:29 pm

    Hello Ruby-do

    Jules told me how to find you this morning. I am totally excited about your new blog webpage.

    As for your “hat” and the fact that you always take pics with it…it’s your signature! Sort of like Jughead’s hat from the Archie comics, he actually had one that was shaped like a crown. Hmmmm, maybe you were a king in a previous life and now that you are reincarnated as an artist, your hat aka crown just goes with the territory!

    Just a thought…you are always going to be “the king of art” to me.


  3. Sheeba permalink
    August 31, 2009 4:06 pm

    That indeed is a nice pic! You guys look gr8 together:)
    Keep the blog going…I’ve enjoyed reading it all!!

  4. Diana permalink
    September 16, 2009 7:37 pm

    Hello, I just wanted to comment on your blog….we are the couple who stoppd by a couple of weeks ago. We had been admiring your property for a while now. Thank you for kindly giving us a tour of your property. You are both so creative and hopefully soon we will have our yard up to par to show it off to you. Keep in mind if you ever run into rock let us know and we can pick it up. Thank you again, Diana and Ruben

    • reubix1 permalink*
      September 16, 2009 8:41 pm

      Thanks, Diana… it was great meeting both you and Ruben. And, rest assured, the rock hunt is on!

  5. September 30, 2009 4:22 am

    Reuben & Paul, I LOVE the blog! It’s Sunset meets Dwell… perfect for where we live! Your musings & images may inspire us to up our ante w/our fledgling drought-tolerant design projects. albeit, we were ‘traditionally’ trained so many times whimsy, quirks & ‘found’ elements are missing… i might need a shot of ‘reuben’ in future designs… i’ll tell rick & our friends about the blog. they’ll love it!

    XOXO Eileen

    • reubix1 permalink*
      September 30, 2009 4:41 am

      Eileen, thanks for commenting! The response has been great and I’m really enjoying posting. Yes, please, tell others and keep reading, there’s more on the way! See you on the train, R

  6. October 13, 2009 5:25 am

    Reuben, great blog!
    Hope to see you soon,

    • reubix1 permalink*
      October 13, 2009 3:17 pm

      Thanks for checking it out, Marilyn, and for leaving a comment!

  7. Ruth Handel permalink
    October 14, 2009 6:00 pm

    Hi RR,

    Turned on to your incredible blog by Deborah Netburn of the Times. Truly totally inspirational! We live in a 1948 tract home in Mar Vista we’ve dubbed “Rancho Relaxo” (thanks Simpsons!) that needs a bunch of garden work. I think your site will be my go-to! And if you ever want to “show me yours” I’ll show you mine!


    • reubix1 permalink*
      October 14, 2009 6:04 pm

      Hi, Ruth… When Deb showed me that you’d tracked down the RR blog I was really excited since I loved your house’s photos in The Times. Would love to have a show’n’tell sometime; thanks so much for commenting!

  8. March 4, 2010 8:26 pm

    I love this blog Ruben! So wonderful to see your beautiful aesthetic trickling into so many new and exciting arenas! It just makes me wanna get crafty! Oh, and I have I told you lately how much I love looking at your paintings in my house?

    • reubix1 permalink*
      March 4, 2010 8:29 pm

      Thanks, Candace! I miss seeing you and Pete and Sophie (who’s probably in middle school now, right?) And, I’m so happy that you guys have that painting!

  9. April 13, 2010 5:28 pm

    The San Diego Geranium Society will hold their annual Show & Sale on May 15 & 16, 2010 in Balboa Park, Casa Del Prado, Room 101, from 10-4p.m. The event is free.
    Geraniums and their kin, Pelargoniums, are wonderfully hardy, colorful and drought tolerant. We hope you and your readers will visit us or one of our sister clubs in California.
    Thanks for your posts and wonderful photographs!

    • reubix1 permalink*
      April 13, 2010 7:07 pm

      Thanks for the compliments Melissa. I’ll be happy to post a notice about your society’s sale. And, thanks for reading RR.

  10. Mary and Mary permalink
    May 2, 2010 9:23 pm

    Hi Guys,
    I hope all is well. Thank you both so much for a tour of your yard. How Beautiful! My mother
    and I really enjoyed the peacefulness of your home home and garden’s. You are both very kind.
    We hope to see you around sometime. And once again, we thank you. Mary and Mary.

    • reubix1 permalink*
      May 4, 2010 3:06 am

      It was fun having you stop by, good thing we were home and noticed you cruising by. See you soon!

  11. David permalink
    May 28, 2010 12:10 am

    Hi Reuben,

    Nice blog and even nicer gardens. I am now officially ashamed of my own lack of a green thumb. One day, I will drop by and take the grand tour.

    Your annoying co-worker,

  12. Sara permalink
    December 8, 2010 2:38 am

    Hi can you email me the INDIAN-SPICED CASHEW-LIME COOKIES recipe? someone made them in my class and I can’t find the recipe anywhere online. Thanks!

    • reubix1 permalink*
      December 8, 2010 2:47 am

      Sure, will track it down and email it

  13. Mark permalink
    December 22, 2010 6:11 pm

    Hey… nice to meet you both at Russ and Kathy’s. Very nice evening and wonderful company. Hope all this rain hasn’t washed out your beautiful yard! Stay dry and keep in touch.

    • reubix1 permalink*
      December 22, 2010 7:32 pm

      We enjoyed meeting you both, too. Let me know when you come down ’round these parts next!

  14. January 20, 2011 4:15 am

    I think I was turned on to your blog by Cindy McNatt of Dirt D’jour and I am so glad. I’ve been subscribed for a couple of months now and it is always inspiring and fun. If you are ever in the Los Feliz area you should stop by our store and say hi.

    • reubix1 permalink*
      January 20, 2011 4:21 am

      Hi, and thanks… I’ve met the most amazing people through this blog and I’ll add you to the list. I’d love to say hi; I work for The Times HOME section and am well-aware of your great store. See you soon!

  15. J.E. Nelson permalink
    February 22, 2011 5:16 am

    I was looking for photos of the corner stores in Riverside including The Parrott but now can’t find them. I visited Parrott this afternoon and had a wonderful time with the owner/artist and also Amazing Grace next door– such trendy, edgy cool and elegant shops!! Thanks for the heads-up (except now I can’t find it on your site).

  16. Krissy Wozniak permalink
    February 25, 2011 12:06 am

    Hi! My name is Krissy. I work next store to Paul at my mom’s law firm. My step father, Nick Lopez, did plumbing work for you and Paul. I’m writing because we have a mutual passion which is writing. I read your blogs and I must say it is outstanding! I’m interested in writing as a career and wondered how you got where you are and how to start a blog and what it takes basically. If you can return my email that would be great. Thank you so much for your time!

    • reubix1 permalink*
      February 25, 2011 5:47 am

      Krissy, thanks for such a great comment! I’d love to talk some time and share what I know at this point about blogging. As for writing, I’m just a beginner, but I find it fun and a terrific means of communication … it kind of amazes me how much people enjoy my posts, so that makes it worthwhile. I’ll be in touch and we’ll get together. Hi, to your dad; we’ll talk soon. Reuben

  17. Mark permalink
    March 18, 2011 4:00 pm

    Hey guys, long time no blog. We’re going to the LB Flea Market this Sunday in search of window/planter boxes. Might we see you there?

    • reubix1 permalink*
      March 18, 2011 4:31 pm

      Geez, is it flea time again? … You just might see me; I’ll be the guy with the bags under his eyes and dirty nails hanging around Mike Delgado’s succulent stall around 7am … say hi! Update: unless it’s raining!

  18. May 13, 2011 8:34 pm

    Hello. We are having the Silverlake Art Craft & Vintage flea market tomorrow with over 80 vendors, and would love any additional help getting attendees there. Thanks in advance! Also you can check us out @ pardon the lack of a much needed update 🙂 Also here is the Facebook event page:

    • reubix1 permalink*
      May 13, 2011 8:40 pm

      Hey, Josh, thanks! I’d be glad to give you guys a plug … will send you an email

  19. Rita Majkut permalink
    July 20, 2011 6:30 pm

    Just found your blog about a month ago & it has given me many smiles.
    I have a succulent garden out in west Van Nuys (now magically known as Lake Balboa) and follow a handful of gardening blogs online which range from very instructive to very personable – and yours is definitely one of the most unique.
    Thanks for letting me eavesdrop on your life!

    • reubix1 permalink*
      July 20, 2011 6:37 pm

      Rita, thanks for eavesdropping, the more the merrier … and being called ‘unique’ makes my day, thanks!

  20. Britney Judge permalink
    July 26, 2011 12:03 pm

    Hi Reuben –

    Even though I love, love, love your blog, I’m relatively new to blogs, so I just realized that I can write to you like everyone else (I guess I was having a blond moment). Anyhow, I wanted to let you and Paul know how great it was to meet you. You have totally inspired me. Like I shared with you, I have only recently started designing outdoors, and my heart and instinct has wanted to do little vignettes everywhere you look. I just wasn’t sure if I could pull it off and still make everything look beautiful and artistic. Well, you have shown me that I can… and I will. I look forward to you, Paul, Inky and Frito coming by for a visit again so I can show you how things are progressing.


    • reubix1 permalink*
      July 26, 2011 12:07 pm

      Well, Brit, Paul and I feel the same about meeting you, too. I look forward to seeing what you come up with at your place. Your raw and open spaces had me drooling: all that possibility! Thanks for such a great comment and we look forward to seeing you and Bill again, soon. R

  21. Loyd Lucas permalink
    August 1, 2011 3:17 am

    Dear Reuben and Paul,

    Loyd and I would like to “Thank You” both for the wonderful and delightful tour of your beautiful and unique landscape. Looking forward to seeing you both this Fall. It was truly a pleasure meeting you both.
    Thanks Again,

    Rhonda & Loyd

    • reubix1 permalink*
      August 1, 2011 3:20 am

      Well, Rhonda and Loyd, we had a great time meeting you both, too! Thanks for commenting and enjoy looking back on how all of this Rancho magic came to be. Reuben

  22. October 3, 2011 6:36 pm

    This is a beautiful blog! Love the header! Did you create that yourself?

    • reubix1 permalink*
      October 3, 2011 6:40 pm

      Thanks, Jacqueline, I did create the header myself, using images from posts that represent all my, er, stuff. I’m happy you’re enjoying it!

  23. October 31, 2011 10:10 pm

    Hi Reuben,
    I’d love to pick up your ALOE shot in Sunset’s Fresh Dirt blog, then refer people back to your blog for the DIY part. Would that work for you?

    Jim McCausland
    Sunset Magazine

    • reubix1 permalink*
      October 31, 2011 10:12 pm

      Hi, Jim, I’d love for you to use my pic for Fresh Dirt … and thanks for the referral!

  24. November 7, 2011 3:45 am

    I can’t wait for the next sale.

    • reubix1 permalink*
      November 7, 2011 3:51 am

      Hi, Johanna… the next sale will be as soon as I can forget this back pain: ouch! … Thanks so much for coming out with Ruth; meeting you both made my day!

  25. Cindy V permalink
    November 17, 2011 2:40 am

    Hi Guys, I came to your treasure hunt of a yard sale. What a great way to share your loved treasures & get a new space for new treasures. I have a very similar taste, & my daughter also loves to decorate in such a beautiful eclectic, or an even better word could be, collectic way. I was inspired to look around my yard to use things I have on my side yard to make a couple of patio tables out of block wall blocks, bricks, italian tiles, etc. I have one of the succulents I got at your sale. I’ve been looking @ my old yard tools to make some more planters too. Paul, I am very serious about learning the simple art of fountain making from you. There are so many things to find @ yard sales, or thrift stores, to make into fountains. Such a great gift idea for people who have a bunch of old things they don’t know what to do with. I love the bird feeder hanging on the beautiful wood burl branch too. they both fit very well in my style. Thanks for a fun finds. I would love to come over again for coffee or you could come over here. I live close to CSDR near the very cool eucalyptus trees on Horace. I love those massive magetic trees. Call if we can get together to chat some time about putting fountains together. When my daughter came to pick up the fountain for me, she told me what you said Paul, it was so sweet. You said, “what was it like growing up with a Mom like her? She’s on her way of becoming a Shaman” You are very kind. From the short time I spent with you, I would decribe your gift as “an encourager” — Cindy V

    • reubix1 permalink*
      November 17, 2011 4:13 am

      Cindy, thanks for taking the time to write such a great comment; we’re glad you enjoyed our sale and meeting us! We would love to get together and will be in touch. I’ve saved your cell number elsewhere and will share it with Paul. Have a great day! Reuben

  26. Cindy V permalink
    November 20, 2011 5:25 am

    Wow, a lot of typo’s in my message to you the last time. Sorry, but I am a task oriented person, so when I sit down to write a typed mssg, it’s sometimes a mess. Call if we can get together to chat about putting that fountain together I bought from you, Paul. We are both very busy, maybe we could come up with a good time to get a few minutes together. I have the gift of planning my schedule on any day, so ley me know. Cindy V

    • reubix1 permalink*
      November 20, 2011 5:34 am

      Hi, Cindy, I’ve sent Paul your message including cell phone number.

  27. Crystal Coleman permalink
    January 13, 2012 8:15 am

    Hello Reuben & Paul, Im really enjoying your blog! I stumbled across it looking for succulents on craigslist. Im a local Realtor specializing in vintage homes in Riverside. I have a new listing I thought you might find interesting, its a mid-century modern 4 bed/2 bath house that sits on a 1/2 acre lot that backs directly to the santa anna river bottom, with private access to the bike trail. It was built by Wendell Harbach as his personal residence, Harbach was the architect for the downtown library, the downtown fire station, Poly High school, and the RCC gymnasium. There will be a estate sale the first weekend in February, many mid-century items. The house will be cleared out and a deep cleaning done before its on the market. It will be priced at 199k. 5994 Londonderry pl. Please let me know if you have any questions or know anyone who might be interested. Thank You!

    private road on side of property
    • reubix1 permalink*
      January 14, 2012 8:32 pm

      Thanks, Crystal! You’ll hear from me very soon…

  28. Nora permalink
    March 1, 2012 3:22 am

    Hola señor Ruben, Espero que puedas leer mi mensaje en español.
    hace un tiempo conoci tu jardin, Y me enamore de El, me gustaria saber si podrias darme ideas para hacer una casita en el jardin para mi hija , quien tiene 6 años de edad. quiero que sea de objetos reciclados, naturales, divertidos y coloridos.
    Yo vivo en Riverside, y la joya mas bonita en mi jardin es mi Palapa. ahora el proximo proyecto es la casita para mi niña.

  29. April 8, 2012 11:11 am

    Hey there! My name is Sarah Carreras, I’m the new environmental committee chair at RCC. I’m starting up a new campaign that spreads environmentalism through art on campus. I was wondering if you would be interested in having one or more of your pieces displayed on campus?
    Thank you for your consideration, I’m looking forward to hearing from you.

    • reubix1 permalink*
      April 8, 2012 1:05 pm

      Hi, Sarah, thanks for your email. I would be very happy to participate in your new campaign. Thanks; I’ll be emailing you directly and we’ll set something up. R

  30. Cecile Carney permalink
    April 8, 2012 10:50 pm

    Happy Easter Mr. M. O:-)

    Your “Art through Environmentalism” fits right into the concept
    of Easter. A time for rebirth, love, and hope.

    It’s going to be great to walk the grounds of RCC and witness life, love, and hope via art.

    I love you.


    • reubix1 permalink*
      April 8, 2012 11:25 pm

      Thanks, CC! Your good wishes mean a lot to me … And thanks for looking at my blog; are you a regular reader? Love, R

  31. Cecile Carney permalink
    April 9, 2012 4:43 am

    Yes. 0;-) of course.

  32. Kat permalink
    April 16, 2012 1:56 am

    Hi Reuben,

    Would love to send you an invitation and information on this year’s 23rd annual Southern California Spring Garden Show April 26-29 at South Coast Plaza. If you’re unable to attend, would still love to send you a copy of Pat Welsh’s new book. 🙂

    • reubix1 permalink*
      April 16, 2012 2:28 am

      Hello, Kat, thanks for your great comment. I’m aware of your South Coast Plaza garden show and do plan to attend … and blog about it here, of course! … and, I would love to have a copy of Ms. Welsh’s book, thanks! Please send it to Reuben Munoz, 4380 Isabella St., Riverside CA 92501

      See you at the show!

      • Kat permalink
        April 27, 2012 8:05 pm

        You got it, Reuben – Pat W’s book will be on its way! Enjoy the event and looking forward to your blog post!

  33. April 18, 2012 12:59 am

    Hey so it looks like we can have more art on RCC campus. I’m working with another person on this project her name is Selena Wilson. She has a community on My Green Riverside, that she wishes for you and the others to join so she can be in connection with the group.
    The link is…
    I am part of the environmental art group, it’s free, it’s just a forum for members to discuss stuff.

    Thank you.

  34. Sam Cowell permalink
    August 28, 2012 5:59 am

    Thanks for your tour last Friday, we all loved it. I love your creativity! Although I don’t comment much, I find your posts inspiring me to think “outside the box” and look at everything in a much different way. Thanks also for the green rock from your “rock pile”! I’ve put it in my collection and can’t wait to tell about it’s “story of origin”. You will of course now be a part of that story! Many thanks for sharing!
    Sam from Napa Valley

    • reubix1 permalink*
      August 28, 2012 6:04 am

      You’re very welcome, Sam (no relation to Simon), it was my pleasure; I’m so happy I caught sight of the bright colors outside my window.. Please feel free to comment at will, I love hearing from you and all RR readers …

  35. February 26, 2013 6:48 pm

    Hi Reuben!

    I love your blog and have really enjoyed your landscaping and garden design. If you wouldn’t mind, could you drop me an email? I’m the manager and have something I’d like to discuss. Looking forward to hearing from you!

    Best regards,


  36. Dave in Toronto permalink
    June 21, 2013 6:37 pm

    Reuben, here’s a story for you. An agave plant is in its last throes at the horticultural gardens here in Toronto, and they cut a hole in the glass roof for the flower stalk:
    Thought of you immediately. 🙂

    • reubix1 permalink*
      June 21, 2013 6:42 pm

      Dave, thanks — Hope all’s well with you and Rey up there!

  37. April 19, 2014 12:56 am

    Whoa….I just found your blog through Otto Von Munchow, and I love it!

    • April 19, 2014 2:26 am

      Thanks, Angeline! I just dropped you a line at your place 😉

      • April 19, 2014 5:25 am

        Thanks for the follow, and I really look forward to following all of your posts as well.

  38. Maria permalink
    April 27, 2014 6:59 pm

    On my walks around the Wood Streets/Mt. Rubidoux/Fairmont Park area I pass by your house just for a ‘taco de ojo’. It is an oasis in my cluttered days.

    • April 27, 2014 7:42 pm

      Thanks very much, Maria! I appreciate you commenting … did you see the article in the newspaper? I wasn’t able to find one!

  39. June 9, 2014 5:17 am

    Hi Reuben and Paul! Very cool to have met you both tonight. Now that I’ve checked out the blog, I see we have so much in common! I’m a gardener and a thrift store/estate sale tramp and I love dogs and succulents too 🙂 I’m thinking good thoughts and sending my prayers your way for a speedy recovery of your upcoming surgery. Cheers! Lisa Mertins

    • June 9, 2014 5:29 am

      Thanks so much, Lisa, for checking out the blog as well as for the good thoughts … We enjoyed meeting you, too!

  40. Luisa permalink
    July 22, 2014 4:23 am

    Reuben, I thought of you when I saw this (though you’ve probably seen it already!) — love the agave leaf, the cactus paddles, and those cans…! Hope all is well with you and yours, and take care —

    • July 22, 2014 4:32 am

      Luisa, thanks so much for tipping me off to these gorgeous pieces … love them all!

  41. August 4, 2014 1:55 am

    Hi Reuben, I saw Paul today at the Odekirk’s Estate Sale on 14th. I figured an Odekirk’s sale is where I would run into you one day! Lucky you have an estate sale surrogate for now 🙂 I continue to keep good thoughts about you’re recovery. Best wishes!!

    • August 4, 2014 3:25 am

      Thanks so much, Lisa … I’m not sure my estate sale surrogate wanted to go but I’m glad he did! 😉

  42. Heather Elder permalink
    December 4, 2014 3:30 am

    Hi Rueben, Do you ever give tours of your home? I live in Torrance but am in San Bernardino once a month. Please let me know if you are buying. I have a very interesting contact. Thank you, Heather

    • December 4, 2014 4:08 am

      Hi, Heather … We were part of a City of Riverside garden tour in 2011, and I give impromptu look-sees with people who stop by. Send me an email at my personal box: Thanks!

  43. October 28, 2015 10:34 am

    Reuben–You haven’t posted since June. Are you OK? What brings me here is that I thought you might like to see this vertical succulent wall:

    • October 28, 2015 9:03 pm

      Hi, John, yes! I am indeed fine. I’ll post again by year’s end and explain my absence. Thanks for checking and thanks for the link!

  44. David C permalink
    November 20, 2018 7:30 pm

    Hello, old friend. How are you? It’s been quite a long time. I recently rediscovered a piece of art you made for me. Friend O’ Mine. I had it framed properly and it’s hanging in my favorite part of the house. My music room. And front room for that matter. Yes, I’m showy.

    I just wanted you to know I have dear memories of you. I hope you and Paul are well.

    Much love,

    David (LambHead)

    • July 3, 2021 2:47 pm

      Me again… if you do wish to chat please use my email: … I’m about to log out here and god knows when I’ll remember the password for the account again. Reuben


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