Monday, June 30, 2008

A flea market kind of day...

One of my oldest daughter's college friends came to stay for the weekend, so on Sunday we decided to take a drive to the Lancaster Flea Market...


Either the flea market was off or I was, because not much caught my eye... Although I did like this rack of ladies hats...


These white wicker chairs with the cottage blue accents were very pretty... But since I really don't have anyplace to put them in my small home they didn't speak to me (actually, they spoke, but I successfully tuned them out)... And I loved that little round table. I have a similar one-tiered table from my mom's house that I'll have to post about sometime...


When we got to the very last aisle, this sweet guy spoke (meowed) to me.. "Take me home, Donna.. take me home...." Now I may not have room for 4 wicker chairs, but I can always find room for a little kitty looking for a home!!


He was marked $3, but since it was a flea market I felt obliged to ask the dealer if they would take $2, which they did (he's a signed ceramic piece from the early 70's). So for $2 I have a sweet cottage kitty (to keep me company when the Staffordshire doggies leave!)

So it was a fun day... Everyone got a little something... my daughter found a vintage skirt, her friend found lots of ephemera, and hubby got a new baseball cap. I do have to say that I was a bit disappointed in the quality of the flea market though. I haven't been there in quite some time, and it seemed like there were way more "dollar store" booths than I remember; and the outdoor (big item) vendors who used to be in the rear of the building weren't there today...

But nonetheless, it was a fun afternoon!

Donna

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Visual inspiration....

I love visuals - beautiful paintings, photographs, and illustrations, etc... That's why I was so excited to discover the Driftwood Shack, a relatively new blog that is taking one letter at a time, attaching a theme/item/topic to that letter, and then posting the most beautiful visuals that correspond... (I liken her to the Sue Grafton of blogs!)...


copyright Allison Trentelman
For example, this is one of the visuals from the "A is for artwork" post...


www.enchantedlavender.com
These lavender candles are from the "C is for candles" post...


www.trianon-online.com
This unique table lamp is from the "D is for driftwood" post...

And I love what she writes in her About Me: "I'm miles from the sea but my favourite style is weathered boards and scruffy paint- give me blue and neutral shades with rocks and pebbles, linen and canvas, leather and jute with wood wood and more wood- wood that looks like trees, wood that has a history, so if you prefer your paint stained jeans to your new ones- relax and see just how beautiful scruffy can be..........." (copyright Driftwood Shack)

I hope you'll all pop over to the UK to visit her blog! She is only up to the letter E so far (which is for eggs, by the way), and I anxiously await each new letter/topic and the beautiful visuals that accompany each post!!

Donna

Friday, June 27, 2008

An Award and a few more "shades of blue"...

"Oh, yes, I am the big guy of the house..."

Here is Spotty, who prefers to sleep on a big dog bed rather than a little kitty bed....


...and here is his sister, Tiger (who wouldn't get out of bed this morning!)... They both wanted their pictures taken in their blue beds and/or bedding for the Sadie Olive "shades of blue" inspiration...

And they're also pretty certain that the reason I received the following award is because of the "cuteness factor" that they bring to my blog on an ongoing basis!


I received the "Arte y Pico" award from Angie at Sandals and Daisies (I just love that blog name!). Angie has just recently started blogging and you won't believe all the furniture she's been transforming. She posts lots of "before and after" photos of the thrift store and flea market finds that she's turning into treasures! I know you will all enjoy visiting her blog as much as I do... So thank you, Angie, and welcome to blogland! (Spotty and Tiger want to welcome your Cooper and Cashew to blogland, too!!)

1) You have to pick 5 blogs that you consider deserving of this award for their creativity, design, interesting material, and also contribution to the blogging community, no matter what language.
2) Each award has to have the name of the author and link to his/her blog to be visited by everyone.
3) Each award winner has to show the award and put the name and link to the blog that presented her/him with the award.
4) The award winner and one who has given the prize have to show the link of "Arte y Pico" blog so everyone will know the origin to this award.

I have so many blogs that I love to visit, and I just tagged some not long ago.. So I would like to present this award to:

Tales From An O.C. Cottage - You will fall in love with the O.C. Cottage (actually, there are several of them as M writes about her's and her sisters' cottages)... And what a delight they all are! You will see cottage decorating galore, beach decor, cottage gardens, projects, the cutest kitty photos e-v-e-r, and you will not be able to leave without smiling and laughing at the witty writing!!

At Home In The Country - Wait until you visit Jill, 'at home in the country'! Join her as she anxiously waits for her dream house to be built by Bob the Builder (yes, that really is his name!). She finds the best thrift store/flea market items for the best prices ever, and you will fall in love with her little fuzzies, Socks and Coco Bean (the kitties) and Molly (the sweetest little doggie!)...

Pink Icing on the Cake - You must visit LeAnn's blog - yes, it is as yummy as it sounds! It is cottage personified! You should see the update she just did on her kitchen! She also used the neatest color combination on an old dresser she recently painted. Her home is done in all my favorite colors and you will love visiting her! Don't miss the banner across the bottom of her blog - I LOVE those colorful Adirondack chairs all lined up!!!

Life on Bonnie Lane - Kady just seems like one of the sweetest people, and she is just about the proudest momma ever (you'll realize that as soon as you read her blog!)... Kady lives in her dream house, situated on the bank of a river, and she loves her family, her home, her gardens, and life. I love reading about all of them and as a mom, I just loved her most recent post about her son :) Oh - and she cracks me up!! A funny lady!

Little Red House - I really enjoy visiting Mary at her home/blog! She has a great writing style that always leaves me smiling (very cutting edge humor!)... She also happens to take the most incredible photos I've ever seen! In fact, her photography is sooooo good that one of her photos has just been published in the August 2008 issue of Old House Journal!! And if you're a "Chip" lover like me, you must check out her most recent post!

So thank you to all these lovely bloggers... You all inspire me and make me smile whenever I visit you!

Donna

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

I've got the blues...

Once again I was inspired by the Sadie Olive blog to take camera in hand, this time in search of blue; I use several different blues in my decorating, yet I refer to all of them as cottage blue! So here are my many shades of 'cottage blue'...


The pillow stuffed sham that cushions the seat of one of our rockers...



The "L" of my LOVE frame is a photo of Amanda, napping when she was 16 weeks...


Little sister Courtney, 3-1/2 years later, wearing the same hand-me-down sleeper, now faded from countless washings... She was also 16 weeks in her photo, and she is the V in LOVE...


A french bucket decorated with luscious pink roses sits on an old pink vanity stool in the family room...


One of my favorite pillows from the Simply Shabby Chic collection at Target...


One of the ruffled pillow shams that cover our brick hearth, which we have yet to decide how to permanenently finish...


One of my vintage chenille scatter rugs... I love using the old rugs from the 50's...


Mr. Bluejay, taking one of the peanuts I left for him...


A small bucket of silk hydrangeas in the living room...


The 'secret' is now out! I love kuku coco butter deodorant for the summer. The scent reminds me of the beach! (The little earring dish is from Urban Outfitters if anyone is interested - I love mine!)


My beautiful, vintage Mary garden statue....


... the perfect blue... the perfect chippiness....


She makes my garden sing in blue!

My blue Fenton peacock vase from the days when I was thrifting non-stop, trying to find those Staffordshire dogs!!


And the sweet little Mellin's Infant Formula bottle, also from those thrifting days... I just love the blues!!!

Donna

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

My shy guy...

Okay... I brought the camera outside today, even though it was nasty and rainy, hoping to catch one of our hummers at the feeder.

I turned the camera video on and said, "Well, I was hoping that..." and would have gone on to say, "... Mr. or Mrs. Hummingbird would stop by for a drink," but I no sooner got the first part out when I realized that Mr. H was already there - and that I had scared him off with my talking and moving!

So, here is the shortest (6 second) video you will ever see of a male ruby throat hummingbird (and he's only in it for about 3 seconds, my shy guy!!) When it starts, he's hovering above the feeder, then he zips down and takes off to the left... Don't blink or you'll miss him! "I promise to keep it zipped next time, Mr. Hummer... "


video

P.S. We had torrential downpours and high winds yesterday and today so there are leaves and small branches down all over the yard...

Donna

Monday, June 23, 2008

Remembering Tasha Tudor...

One of my favorite children's book illustrators, Tasha Tudor, passed away last week at the age of 92, surrounded by her family...


These are just a few of the Tasha Tudor books that we have... I collect "The Night Before Christmas" books and hers are the most beautifully illustrated ones...


And I feel so lucky to own a signed copy of her Corgiville Christmas...


Her detailed illustrations capture the beauty of New England (she made her home in Vermont), and I never tire of looking through her books. I used to get as (or more) excited as my girls when we'd get a new stack of beautifully illustrated children's books from the library when they were little, or when we'd purchase a new children's book for our own bookshelves.


I truly believe that children's books are as much for adults as they are for children.

So thank you, Tasha, for the countless hours of enjoyment that I/we have gotten, and will continue to get, from your books.

If you click on her name in the first sentence, it will take you to her website where you can read a little Tasha Tudor biography or purchase her books, cards, prints, etc. I believe it is maintained by her family. Happy reading....

Update: As mentioned in some of the comments, Tasha Tudor was more than just an author and illustrator... she was a fascinating woman, to say the least. There are countless books about her as well as by her. I also remember watching a documentary about her life, her gardening, her animals, her dollhouse... I believe it was on PBS years ago. It was fascinating (maybe the same one you referred to, Jill)... I just found this "Pathways to the Past" article on Tasha Tudor that you may enjoy if you'd like to know even a bit more about her.

Donna

Sunday, June 22, 2008

"All my Chips" - a backyard soap opera

We had an impromptu video session this morning... Excuse the peanut shells everywhere (a feeding frenzy had been taking place); excuse the messy table (it hadn't been wiped down yet); and please excuse the cushion stain (drink spill - not animal related, thank goodness!)...

A few Chip facts:

1) all of our Chip(s) are friendly;

2) most of our Chip(s) eat out of your hand;

3) and then there are the precious few of our Chip(s) who even seem to enjoy being petted, like Amanda's little friend in this video. I was sooooooooo glad her camera was down on the patio so I was able to shoot this!

Watch as he stores the first peanut in his left cheek, the second in his right cheek, and then grabs a third for good measure before heading back home (where he deposits them into his peanut bank and is back within minutes to get three more)... This went on for quite a while before I finally had to cut him off (the peanut budget is only so big!)...


video

Answer to question: Yes, that is my voice on the video :) The Chip(s) are waiting for you, Joanne!

Donna

Saturday, June 21, 2008

My bird lamp...


(click photo for Urban Outfitters source)

A little extra post today because someone asked where I got my bird lamp. I've also noticed that many people land on my blog after doing a google (or other) search for "bird lamp," so a lot of people must love bird lamps besides me!!

My two beautiful daughters gave me this cottage-perfect lamp for Christmas... They had been at Urban Outfitters in Harvard Square last November when they spotted it. So, if you have an Urban near you, they may have them in stock (thereby saving you the shipping charges); but if not, you can purchase it from their website. Just click on the phot0 above and it will bring you to the direct link for the lamp, shown here with the prettiest cottage blue lampshade (not included with the lamp), but that will be my next color if I ever get tired of my green shade! Oh, and I want the white brick painted wall behind the lamp, too... "Oh, honey... look what I found! A future project for us (you) to work on!!! " (screaming in background... hair being pulled out.. not a pretty sight!! Gotta go!)

(Update: If anybody lives in the Northeast, I just purchased another amazing bird lamp... You can see the photo and source here).

Donna

Shades of white (part two)

Today is a continuation of yesterday's post, inspired by Sadie Olive's "Shades of White." Today I headed to the deck and garden with camera in hand. Here are the "shades of white" I found today, interspersed with a few older photos...


My St. Francis windchimes, purchased at a fun little NH junktique shop a couple of months ago...


The view from my deck (if flat on your back!)...


An old weathered window mounted over a flowerbox...


The little white bistro set (just a plastic/resin set from Linens N Things many years ago). It was originally dark brown. Needless to say, it didn't take long before I took a brush and white paint to it...


The birdhouse we just finished putting up in the garden...


One of my two cherub twins from a rummage sale at a church last summer. They were meant to hold a curtain rod, but for the time being I like them better on the patio...


I thought I'd try white shutters on the white shed for a change of pace, with the only color being the flower boxes. (The flowers and vinca vine have grown quite a bit since my May 31st post!)...


A lovely old birdhouse that I've had forever. Years ago the squirrels took over the house, as you could probably tell by the enlarged entryway!


A little rusty iron bird that watches over the garden and birdbaths...


An old weathered picket fence planter box on the deck...


A decorative church birdhouse in the garden... (sometimes it's in the house, sometimes outside)...


One of the white 'wicker-look' chairs on the patio...


A birdhouse that still needs to be mounted on a pole (and have birdy doo washed off its roof!)...


My funny little garden hare in front of the deck planter boxes...


The old weathered chair that holds the summer flowers...


Sleepy old man-in-the-moon, taking his afternoon nap...


One of the two stone lovebirds in with the impatiens...

Thanks for joining me on my search for "shades of white"...

Donna

Today's song: Both Sides Now - Joni Mitchell

Friday, June 20, 2008

Shades of white (part one)...

"Shades of White" is the June 18th blog post at Sadie Olive, and while I don't have her talent as a photographer, I do have plenty of white around my house to photograph! Today's post (part one) will be "shades of white" from inside my home (some new photos, some that you’ve perhaps already seen); tomorrow's post will be "shades of white" from around the yard.





































Donna

Today's song: Edelweiss from The Sound of Music