Thursday, August 21, 2014

Wonderful Kitchen Island w/ Big Farm Sink

I really like the double farm sink, the island, and the cabinetry. Everything except the window treatment and perhaps the floor.
I would put a colorful runner in front of this busy work area and that would help the coldness of the floor. The whole room needs to be accessorized to make it warmer. I have a really busy day ahead of me and I'm trying to keep my head on straight to get everything done in an orderly fashion. See you later. xo

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Cotswold Cottage with Thatched Roof

There are no words, are there? It's just wonderful. via

Life's Little Instruction Book | Volume II | Page 81


A few more suggestions, observations, and reminders on how to live a happy and rewarding life.

This is a great page. I agree with all three points. The last one might be hard to do for a while. Here's what I'm picturing in my mind. Parent: "Okay?" Child: "No problem!"

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Adorable Cottage

Don't you love the brick exterior and wood shingle roof? It's tiny but it appears to have a fireplace. Let's peek in the window. via

Such a Smart Cat.

Are you impressed? I certainly am. Never underestimate the intelligence of a cat. Mine never ceases to amaze me but she would rather sit outside my window and meow her head off until I open the front door for her. The hole in this fence was put there so the owner could reach through and unlock the fence. I wonder how long it took this kitty to figure it out as well? via
We are still having cool weather and my fleece feels good this morning. See you later.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Simple, Understated, Gorgeous House

This house is an exercise in Puritan simplicity. I wish I could see the rest. via Big pumpkins on either side of the front door would look nice here in the fall. Right now, it's a blank canvas.

Lovely House - Late Summer and Early Fall

The window boxes say summer but the trees say fall. This photo shows the best of both. I love the brick and cobblestone walk.  Absolutely stunning! via
We are having the coolest August I can ever remember. It feels more like late September. I'm not complaining but it makes me realize summer's almost over. Slow down August, I'm not ready to say goodbye to you quite yet. xo

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Apple Cake Recipe Revised - So Good

I wasn't ready to give up on that low sugar German Apple Cake I posted several days ago. My first one was too dry but this one was perfect. I mixed it in my Cuisinart with the metal blade and it was less messy than bowl and beater method for such scant ingredients. I decided to make oat flour first by whizzing one cup of old fashioned oats in my food processor first and reserving them in a bowl. Then I followed the old recipe...Cream 3 Tablespoons Butter (last time I used coconut oil) with 1/4 cup of sugar and a pinch of salt. I used salted butter. Add one egg and continue mixing. Combine one cup flour with one teaspoon baking powder (my oats did not make quite one cup so I was forced to add some white flour -- darn). Next time I will grind more oats. Add dry ingredients to the sugar mixture with enough milk to make a stiff batter. I just dumped some soy milk from the carton and made a thinner mixture than last time that was pourable into a 9" round cake pan that was pre-buttered. Top with apples. This time I had to use 1-3/4 apples. I had a tiny bit of cinnamon sugar left over from the last time and I sprinkled it on top. I forgot to add the pats of butter on top but that was a good mistake because added butter was not needed. Bake at 350° for one hour. It was perfect and delicious. Will make this again and again. Not too sweet and very healthy. It had a cake texture instead of a shortbread texture like my first attempt. Try it, you will like it too. 

If you eat 1/2 of this cake, it will contain the same amount of sugar as one container of blueberry greek yogurt which has 20 grams of sugar or 5 teaspoons. I measured the number of teaspoons in 1/4 cup of sugar and it's 10. I think it's super healthy made with the oat flour and I'm very excited that I can eat this and not feel too much guilt. It would have been gluten free if I hadn't added the small amount of white flour. I used Pink Lady apples that are one of my favorite varieties. Don't have any apples on hand? Try peaches, plums, nectarines, blueberries, or even bananas. I hope I have the will will power to save a big wedge for tomorrow's breakfast. I'm posting this early in case you want to bake one for your Sunday supper dessert. xo
I just found a great article about oat flour and how to use it in baking written by the Self-Reliant Sisters. It's very informative and timely -- read it here.

Aiken SC Home - So Lovely !

Hitchcock Woods Residence. 
This red sandy dirt road brings back memories of my previous life in South Carolina.

Yes, please.
Have a great Sunday. Mine is off to a good start. I woke up early and finished a movie I started last night. Then it started raining. Then it stopped. Now the sun is out and I have blue skies and white clouds and glistening raindrops on the trees. Sounds perfect, doesn't it? xo

Saturday, August 16, 2014

The Perfect House

I adore this house with the wrap-around porch and the most delightful recessed balcony on the second floor. It's perfection, isn't it? via
Have a wonderful weekend. xo

Friday, August 15, 2014

Apple Cake - Baked Today

Here it is before baking. I used a corning ware baking dish that was the size called for in the recipe. An 8" round or square would have been better. There wasn't much batter. I used raw sugar and coconut oil in the batter and raw sugar/cinnamon and real butter for the topping. Granulated sugar might have been better. Not sure.

It was more like shortbread than cake. I used only one pink lady apple. It was rather dry but I liked it. My baking powder was probably too old because it didn't rise much. Ice cream on top would have been good but I didn't have any. Anyway, I baked it and ate it. Yum.

Indoor Geranium

My indoor salmon-pink geranium continues to make me happy. I've been watering it with "blue water" and it is loaded with blossoms. I wish people potions worked this well. 

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Every Morning

I usually have a hard time going back to sleep once I wake up. I'm trying something new to see if it helps me sleep later instead of getting up at the crack of dawn. For the past two evenings, I have done a short workout with my hula hoop and it worked. I slept better and later. I did 10 minutes the first night, 12 minutes last night and tonight I did 15 minutes. Fingers crossed!!!

Cool Photo

I wonder if this was planned? Isn't it clever? via

1965 German Apple Cake Recipe

I picked up a vintage spiral cookbook from 1965 today and this recipe was marked with a paper clip. I was impressed by the tiny amount of sugar called for and will definitely make this German Apple Cake. When in the world have you seen a recipe that calls for only 1/4 cup of sugar? Of course there is a little more, because you have to sprinkle cinnamon-sugar on top.

I will use coconut oil as the shortening and real butter to dot on top. This recipe will probably take at least 4 apples. I have Pink Lady on hand now and they are nice and sweet. I will probably cut my apples into 16ths -- not sure about that part yet. I will add the apples one at a time in case it takes fewer than my guesstimate. I will grease the pan with butter too. Yum!
I made this. See photos and my revised recipe here.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Lauren Bacall 1924-2014 RIP

CLASSIC HOLLYWOOD--the first paragraph of the Vanity Fair Article March 2011
To Have and Have Not
She’s one of the last of Hollywood’s golden-age stars, the girl who stole Humphrey Bogart’s heart at age 19 and has been grappling with their dual legend ever since. Now 86, Lauren Bacall looks back on a lucky, if often difficult, life as she gives it straight to Matt Tyrnauer, talking about the effect of Bogie’s fame on her and their kids; her very brief engagement to Frank Sinatra; her stormy second union, to Jason Robards; and why she hates the Oscar she received, in 2009.

Lauren Bacall with Sophie, her papillon, in her apartment at the Dakota, in New York City. She was 86 in this photo and doesn't she look great? She died yesterday, about a month shy of her 90th birthday. Vanity Fair Magazine did a feature about her in March 2011 - read it here. The article is six pages long and it's delicious -- enjoy.

Choices

Thanks so much for all of your positive comments and support regarding my recent problem. I have the best followers!!! xo

Great Country House

Image from The Fuller View on Pinterest
This gorgeous white on white colonial home is already all decked out for the Memorial Day Weekend that's just around the corner. The summer's almost over and it has really been a great one. I haven't had my AC on for ages! We had howling wind and a really rain last night. It was predicted so I had already closed all but my bedroom windows. The curtains were blowing at a 45° angle when I bounded out of bed to close them before the rain started. I'm enjoying an overcast morning and the sun has promised to come out this afternoon. xo

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Classic Colonial

I love every inch of this white clapboard house. via

Painterly Shade Garden with Allium and Hosta

I don't think I've ever seen a more beautiful garden. The Art of Flower and Garden Photography de Clive Nichols via

Monday, August 11, 2014

Succulents

I love this river of succulents. via

Too many hateful comments

I can't take it any more. I deleted the post that was causing all the controversy along with each of the comments, both good and bad. Such a sad day for my blog. 

Acorn Street, Boston

Beacon Hill. Acorn Street. Boston.


Sunday, August 10, 2014

Excellent Question !

This is great, isn't it? Are you a midnight snacker? via

Tabitha Sleeps

Tabitha is wondering if this picture makes her look fat? She has mastered the art of getting really comfortable as she guards the house.

Window in Cambridge England

I love the patina of the house detail in Cambridge England, the vine designs, and the sweet window box. The same view in summer would be nice to see too but I couldn't find one. via

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Have a Great Weekend

So cute. This is what I do too. I have to do a task mentally before I can do it in person. Somehow that always works for me after working it out in my head. Have a great weekend. xo via

Friday, August 8, 2014

Webster, So Close But Not Touching

Webster is still being the best dog ever and he can get this close to the sofa without touching. I'm so proud of him. I was busy with real estate all day and finally the little blue house is all set to close at the end of the month. Whew. 
I am still playing house and have rearranged all of my artwork. The corner behind my TV has a new wall arrangement since this photo was taken. I think I have the room the way I want it finally. I've been rearranging the insides of my kitchen cupboards too. 
I ended up hand weeding the crab grass in the bed near the house and it wasn't that hard because it was growing wood chips, not gravel or turf. I've been digging it out of the driveway too with the pickaxe. I'm fine doing hard work as long as it isn't too hot and the weather has been fantastic. 
I'm looking forward to a lazy evening and maybe some ice cream later. Enjoy yours too. xo

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Indoor and Outdoor Cats

Wow. Look at the size of the white one!
Which do you have? 
Tabitha is both indoor and outdoor.
It's almost chilly outside tonight.
Webster and I just returned from a walk.
Good night -- sleep tight. xo 

Painted Floor with Mariner's Compass

The house I toured on Tuesday had an accurately positioned mariner's compass painted on the floor. I would have preferred it to be lined up with the floor boards. It just seemed wrong to me even though it was right (smile).

Pale Pink Geranium

I'm doing better with my indoor gardening than the outdoor kind.
I'm enjoying the no-weed factor of house plants in the summer. My geraniums that are outside aren't doing nearly as well as the ones I have inside. 

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Today's House Tour

This barn-style house was surrounded by wildflower meadows.

I wandered through the middle on a path.

The gardens were lovely too. There were numerous baskets full of home-grown vegetables near the garages but I didn't see the kitchen garden.

I love the broken stone patio on one side of the pool. I was inspired to come home and pull weeds and got one large garbage can full before I quit because I was hot. I'll repeat tomorrow. xo

Mourning Dove this Morning

Mourning Dove on my roof.

Read all about this dove and listen to the cooing bird call here.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Summer Rolls with Sunflower Seed Pate

These rolls are part sushi, part taco, and part spring roll, but all in all they are 100% delish! It's a good idea to have a big batch of the sunflower pate on hand so that you can whip out a roll whenever the urge hits.

Dinner - Summer Rolls with Curried Pate

Recipe: (makes 8)

3/4 Cup Sunflower Seeds, soaked overnight and drained
1 tsp. Apple Cider Vinegar
1 tsp. Liquid Sweetener (I would omit this)
1 tsp. Curry Powder
1 tsp. Turmeric
1 Clove Garlic
1/4 tsp. Sea Salt
A Pinch of Chili Powder

8 or so Chard Leaves (I will use Romaine Leaves)
1/2 Mango, cut into match sticks
1/2 Bell Pepper, cut into match sticks
1 Beet, grated
1 Carrot, cut into match sticks
1 Avocado, sliced
Handful of Sprouts (I used sunflower)

Procedure:
1. Begin the right before by soaking the sunflower seeds. The next day drain them and puree along with the spices, garlic, and sweetener until the mixture resembles pate.
2. Arrange a small log of pate on each chard leave and top with assorted veggies. Roll up like a burrito. 

Electrical outlets in baseboards.

I wish I had my outlets down low like this. I think they are an eyesore no matter where they are placed, especially if you have paneled walls. I honestly didn't think of putting them down low when my house was being rewired. I anxiously await the day when all lamps are wireless, just as they appear in interior design magazines where they have been photoshopped. Wouldn't that be nice? photo source

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Beautiful Chickens

I love the colors and patterns of their feathers! via

An amazing courtyard.

The following text is translated from the original Spanish -- "In the trellis attached to the wall in this area dwarf orange trees were planted and, with them, a cypress. The lemon in the foreground inhabited the house before reconstruction. Simple iron furniture works well on the brick patio." via
I'm impressed with how nicely this wall grid system works instead of the customary stretched wires usually used for espalier fruit trees.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Manners and Paint by Numbers Art

I like this illustrated quote. via

This takes me back. I got a paint by numbers kit every Christmas for as long as I can remember when I was a kid. I like this one. People collect these now, you know. via

The vintage paint by numbers artwork looks perfect here, doesn't it? via