Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Spectacular Boat House

Magnificent Boat House in Soulby England

Wonderful back entrance all in white

Yes please. I love everything is see in this photo and I really wish I could see more. It's all black and white and brown. Nice! via

Raindrops instead of Snowflakes

   Photo was taken yesterday. What a difference a day makes. The fog is rolling in now as the warmer air hits the snow on the ground. I wrote this paragraph late yesterday.
   Today is bright and sunny and almost all of the snow has melted. I went to broker open houses wearing just a wool blazer over a sweater. It's in the low 50s right now. Everybody was in a good mood and optimism was in the air at my office meeting.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Very Wise Advice Indeed

Geranium Leaves Backlit by Snow Reflection

All of the leaves have turned to face the window. I love the backs of my geranium leaves just as much as the fronts. I have one that is blooming on the third floor. I think the ones in my living room are intimidated by the paperwhites. You really can't blame them either, can you?

Snowboarding Crow

I always knew crows were smart but I have to say this video really surprised and delighted me. A family with a good view of this steep rooftop recorded a crow repeatedly using a round plastic lid as a snowboard. I guess birds like to have fun too! Click here if you can't see the show below.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Staffordshire Spaniel with Paperwhites

My living room mantel rounds the corner on one side to meet the back wall. A large Staffordshire spaniel is posing there alongside a bulb forcing vase with blooming paperwhites. They are reaching for the ceiling but are still very nice and upright because of my cool (as in temperature) house.
Linking to: Small But Charming: Flowers in the Wintery House

Webster the Snow Dog Dressed for The Weather

He's so happy to be wearing his horse-blanket coat again. You know how he likes to be wrapped up.

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I thought this was a nice snow pattern on one of the spruce trees out front.

Snow on My Balcony

It is still really cold but we have bright sun this morning. I took this iPhone photo through my French door and screen door. Nothing has melted yet and I doubt any will today. Webster and I took a walk to the rear of the property last night in the dark and it was very easy because the snow is like powdered sugar. Stay warm and enjoy your Sunday.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Anxiously Awaiting Bedtime

It's been a busy day since my feet hit the floor this morning. I am looking forward to having my head hit these pillows very soon. I need a good movie too. See you tomorrow. Goodnight.

Cats on Tiptoes

I can't imagine what these three cats are looking at, can you? Found on a site devoted to humorous cat photos guaranteed to make you smile.

Have a Great Country Weekend, Snow is Optional

Many of the homes around me have these cattle grates across the driveways to keep the deer out with extensions on the fence posts to make them higher. It is almost easier to plant the things they don't like in my opinion. Rumor has it there are more white-tailed deer in this country now than when the Pilgrims landed. I don't care what they eat at my house but wish they would keep the deer ticks to themselves. I've had Lyme disease several times and it was awful.
I scanned this image from an old magazine and just discovered it on my computer. It's a very pretty farm, isn't it? We did get snow overnight..about 5 inches of powder. I am shoveled out, plowed out and my car has been cleaned off with my trusty rubber broom so I'm all set. Have a great weekend with or without snow.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Natural History Museum - London

Wow. I wouldn't even care whether or not there was anything on exhibit. The architecture itself is enough for me. It's really a museum within a museum. image

Four-and-Twenty Blackbirds

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This iPhone photo snapped from my third floor window doesn't even begin to show the number of blackbirds flying into the woods. What a sight to behold at my cottage this afternoon. Blackbird pie is not on tonight's menu.

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This happy family appears to be thrilled to see such a pie on their dinner table. Here is another Randolph Caldecott drawing from one of my antiquarian books illustrating the nursery rhyme Sing A Song for Sixpence.

A Dusting of Snow in Scotland

I fully expected to wake up to a dusting of snow this morning but the weather report turned out to be much ado about nothing. Don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining one bit. This probably isn't snow in Scotland either, but a heavy frost. See you later. via

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Sleeping Under the Stars

Wouldn't it be fun to sleep under the stars in this delightful bedroom? The stars have been amazing here at the cottage the last few nights and I could see the constellations quite clearly starting with Orion's belt. I haven't taken the wonder dog out for  his last walk yet and I think it will be cloudy. A dusting of snow is predicted tonight. Sleep tight. See you tomorrow. via

Restorable Carpenter Gothic House in Decay

I hope someone saves this great old home. via

Cottage Bungalow Circa 1923

I love this tiny cottage with a front porch and an upstairs sleeping porch. I want the plan book too!
This house and plan were shown in the 1923 plan book, The Books of a Thousand Homes. It featured 500 small house plans. Most of them really were small by today's standards. This one reflects the post WWI movement away from the horizontally oriented Craftsman-style to the more modern and very romantic aesthetic of the 1920s. This particular plan was by Olsen & Urbain, Architects.
The Books of a Thousand Homes: 500 Small House Plans edited by Henry Atterbury Smith.
via ©American Vintage Home on Flickr

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Sleepy Sea Otter

I've been really, really busy for the last several days. This sea otter has the right idea. It's time to say goodnight. 

Wonderful Sign - Rules for A Nice Life

An alphabet to live by. I took the photo of this sign in the home of a friend.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Fabulous salvaged farm sink.

Repurposed, salvaged sink in a renovated Vermont kitchen. Smith and Vansant Architects. I love everything I see in this photo. via

Spectacular Morning with Snow

The most beautiful dusting of snow ever.
Teleport me there now, please.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Earlier iPhone Photo with Edits

I'm still loving my iPhone camera and having fun playing around with different photo edits. Now that the brilliant fall colors have disappeared, I toned down this Japanese maple branch.

Antique Tartanware from Scotland

I have only owned a few pieces of Tartanware in my lifetime of collecting. I would love to have a grouping like this one to decorate my slant-front desk, wouldn't you. via

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Rare Horn Bottle Opener -- Reindeer Form

This cool bar tool with an antler handle resides on my kitchen counter and I can't remember the last time I needed his assistance in opening a bottle. I've never seen another so I think this form must be rare. Purchased years ago from the owner of  an old log cabin. Finding unusual things is such a thrill, isn't it?

Chilly Weekend on Tap

A scene in my trench after the rain from the last several days started to freeze.

Saturday Sunrise from My Kitchen Window

I was up with the sun this morning standing at the kitchen sink getting the coffee going. The day got off to a colorful start but quickly turned overcast and gray. As this Saturday progresses I see blue skies, white puffy clouds and some bright sun starting to appear.

My wish for you this weekend.

Just enough snow to look nice but not enough to be a problem. via

Friday, January 13, 2012

It's the Weekend

Have a great one!

Awesome Winter Sky at My Cottage !

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The sky got very beautiful for just a few minutes and I was able to grab my iPhone, run up to the attic, throw open the window with no screen and snap away. I'm amazed at the beauty that surrounds me when I'm not even looking. 

Patiently Waiting for Pizza

  I popped a couple of Totino's frozen Party Pizzas in the oven for lunch. My mom and I love them. We always get triple cheese and add some toppings. Today I added feta cheese, green olives and the pimentos from the salad olives. The oven was preheated to 450 and I cooked them directly on the second from the bottom oven rack for 13 minutes. I used the wooden rack puller/pusher twice.
  This was a perfect cold weather Friday lunch without leaving the house. Webster enjoyed a crusty bite from each of us. 

Two indispensible kitchen items at my cottage.

   I use both of these wooden kitchen items on a daily basis. The top one is homemade and is used to pull out a hot oven rack and push it in again without burning your hand. You could easily make one yourself by carving up one of those sturdy paint stirrers, available free at The Home Depot. I got mine at a garage sale. The total length is 14 inches but it could be longer if desired.
   The other item I couldn't live without is my trusty wooden toast tongs. They are great for fishing out English muffins without using a metal fork. No more danger of electrocution or burned fingers here at the cottage.

A Very Young Prince Charles and The Queen Mother

The young Prince Charles adored and was adored by his grandmother Queen Elizabeth, The Queen Mother. We haven't had a dose of British Royalty lately and I know everyone will love this delightful vintage photo. via

Thursday, January 12, 2012

After Dinner Drinks at Mousey Hall

After a pleasant dinner with Miss Mousey, Froggy and Mr. Rat enjoy drinks and pleasant conversation. Froggy appears to be doing a little courting too. Don't you love the wonderful fireplace wall? Randolph Caldecott's illustrations always gave the animals small mansions with fine antiques and he dressed them in the finery of the day. 

Webster Says

Any day that begins with an oatmeal pan is a good one. A while later I discovered this scene in the bedroom.

Please don't put the pan in the sink to soak yet. I'm not finished with it. Is this the dog equivalent of breakfast in bed? I know this looks like a dog bed but it is actually MY bed. The wonder dog jumped up on it with the pan in his mouth.

Rainy Day at My Cottage

At least it isn't snow. I think it will be a good day for paperwork in my office before getting my hair cut this afternoon.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Randolph Caldecott Illustrations are So Charming

This was photographed from one of my antiquarian picture books by R. Caldecott (1846-1886). It is a scene from 'A Frog He Would A-Wooing Go' that couldn't be more charming. Mr. Rat and Froggy are on their best behavior while being entertained at Mousey's Hall by Miss Mousey herself.

Iron Bed Becomes A Gate

I love this repurposed antique iron headboard that is now a beautiful gate. PURE GENIUS!!! I hope they were able to use the footboard somewhere too. via

A Kitchen to Adore

Look...it's one room wide. I love this kitchen. How are the counters being lit? Who doesn't love a black and white diamond floor, open shelving, and lots of marble in the heart of the home? This is an elegant well-designed kitchen. I'm off to spend some quality time in mine and rustle up some breakfast. See you later. via

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Another Paperwhite Portrait

I have two stems of fully opened blossoms and they are nice and upright like soldiers standing at attention. I am so happy they aren't drooping and don't need staking.

Recreating Print Rooms

Print rooms were popular in 18th and 19th century England where they served as charming exhibit rooms for prints.

An unusual way for those returning from grand tours abroad to display a sort of souvenir album of visited landmarks, print rooms often featured engravings of favored classical ruins and city scenes.

I photographed these two print rooms from one of my design books: Decorating with Paper by Donna Land and Lucretia Robertson. They were created by English artist Nicola Wingate Saul. What a fun way to display old prints and engravings.

Wonderful Wall of Books

I love books and I love cubbies so this bookcase wall really caught my eye. I'm not at all comfortable with an open fire surrounded by all that wood though. Something like that would send the building/fire inspectors into orbit around here. via

Monday, January 9, 2012

Yawning Cat

Looking at this yawning cat makes me sleepy. I think I'll close up shop and catch up with programs on my DVR. First on the list is 'The Good Wife' recorded last night while I was watching Downton Abbey. Oh, by the way was anyone out there but me annoyed when a big red rectangle appeared on the screen asking viewers to go to Facebook and discuss something or someone? I think it wanted members to vote for the man they wanted most for Mary. If this is going to be commonplace, I hope there is a way to disable it. I watch TV to get away from the computer! via