Thursday, June 21, 2018

Interior Design in A Walk-in Closet

This curated closet is gorgeous and must be a happy place to get dressed for the owner. He has such good taste! via

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Morris Essex Dog Show 1927-1957

This panoramic vintage photo is on display at Harding Township Town Hall and the event took place just up the street from my cottage. The man who built my house was born in the home of Marcellus Hartley Dodge (his family was in service there). In adulthood, he purchased the land to build his own home from Mr. Dodge as shown on my deed and I am the second owner. The lot was much larger back then and provided income in later years as he sold off land for new houses but was still able to maintain a smaller private lot for his cottage, now mine.

The inscription below the photograph: 
Morris and Essex Dog Show 1927-1957
An international event spanning thirty years, the Morris & Essex Dog Show was hosted and sponsored by Geraldine Rockefeller Dodge, daughter of William and niece of John D. Rockefeller, and her husband, Marcellus Hartley Dodge, owner and Chairman of the Remington Arms Company. In 1939, the show exceeded records previously held by Crufts, UK and Westminster shows, becoming the largest one-day dog show in the world, With over 65,000 attendees and 4,456 canines arriving in 10,000 automobiles, it required four times as many tents as the Barnum & Bailey's Circus. No other dog show has ever matched this one for its elegance and standing.

Click on each photo to enlarge and see how formally the people were dressed for this event.

Monday, June 18, 2018

Flower Pot Dog with Water Dish

Here is the Pluto the Dog at the end of a very hot day and a thunder storm is coming any minute now. I wasn't outside very much today so I don't know if any birds or bees used the water dish. I think I should look for a better rock tomorrow. Enjoy your Monday evening. xo

Around My Cottage Outside

Looking down from my balcony. Keep your eye focused on something sticking out beside my limelight hydrangea in the bright sun in the area above the red geranium.

I discovered this long-forgotten dog made from terra cotta flower pots in my barn/garage and now he's my watchdog.

The lamb's ears I planted in this part of my back garden are blooming and standing tall and the humming birds love them.

Here's a closeup of the dog. A young rabbit had a standoff with him at dusk on the day I put him out over the weekend. It was so cute to watch from my bedroom window that is above the raised garden. There are remnants of hot glue in certain places where moss was once attached. I think this was project for a garden club contest at one time and I hope it was a prize winner. I got it at our annual firehouse flea market and auction years ago. It was very heavy to lug to my car but it made me smile and still does. It reminds me of Pluto and he seems right at home on this small patch of blacktop that is in my backyard for some reason. I think I will put a water dish out for him that the birds and chipmunks might enjoy. Happy Monday! xo

Saturday, June 16, 2018

House Touring Last Week

Touring this 1928 house and garden last week was one of the highlights of my real estate career. No words. My photo.

Friday, June 15, 2018

Beautiful Morning at My Cottage

Today is one of those glorious days with cool winds blowing and deep blue skies full of white fluffy clouds. I wish I could share the wind on my face with you! My mind is racing trying to decide which outside chore I should do first. xo

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Pink Peony Portraits

My pink peonies are way too heavy to stand upright and are in their last days in the garden. I put a white plastic bag on the ground to photograph this one after a soft, short rain yesterday.

Good bye peonies. See you next year in all your beauty.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Jessie Willcox Smith 1930s Covers

A very sweet Good Housekeeping Magazine cover dated June 1930 by Jessie Willcox Smith, one of my all-time favorite illustrators.

Here we have Picking Strawberries dated June 1931
Both covers found on Google images.

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Drawers Under The Stairs

I like the six drawers under the stairs that have wainscot fronts to continue the wainscoting pattern above and beside. They would be perfect for scarves and mittens and small personal items that you don't want to display but need on your way out. This is probably a back staircase and not the main formal one. via

Monday, June 11, 2018

Best Porch Swing

Look closely for the cutest tiny dachshund on the tassels.

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Cat Sharing Food with Pheasant

I love this cat, so willing to share her food with a hungry pheasant. via

Saturday, June 9, 2018

Garden Shed to Love

I love the simplicity of this little garden structure. It must be in some sort of Historic Village like Old Sturbridge or Williamsburg. I have never seen a wheel barrow with a basket but I love it. I prefer old tools to new ones any day. Happy gardening. xo via

Friday, June 8, 2018

The Peony Garden from My Window

It's hard to believe the very spot where my peonies are planted was buried in snow higher than the birdbath in March. They bloomed much later than usual and I was a little worried at first because the buds were so small. They slowly got larger and larger until they were back to normal in every way, including their beauty. This is the view from the window over my desk in the pantry. Covering this garden with woodchips last summer was a huge task but it paid off with fewer weeds to pull this year. So far I have been able to keep up with them on a daily basis.

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

No Mud Allowed in this UK Mud Room

Leave your muddy boots outside, please, and use the bootscraper. Isn't this entrance stunning? I love the brick and stonework exterior and the fine woodwork is beautiful inside. It appears to be new construction too in the old tradition. More photos below. I love the fabric in the window shade.

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

View from My Living Room this Morning

I was sitting on my sofa this morning behind the laptop screen you see in the lower left. I had both French doors wide open and I haven't had screen doors on them in years. I picked up my phone so I could share my beautiful view with you. It has been so nice having a few nice days with no rain. xo

Monday, June 4, 2018

Antiques at the Bottom of The Stairs

I love this arrangement at the bottom of the stairs in an old house. The built-in bench is wonderful. The antique table is full of wonderful things, the man in the portrait is handsome, the wood in the basket is handy for a nearby fireplace and an antique sidechair completes the arrangement. The original poster said she wanted to straighten the portrait. I agree. Smile.

Sunday, June 3, 2018

More Peonies and A Field Mowing

Here are my ruffled white peonies open. They are my favorites because of their beauty and because they don't droop since the heads are so light. They close up on cloudy days and at night to protect their delicate blossoms. Peony season is the best, isn't it?

My friend with a tractor showed up unannounced late yesterday afternoon to mow my field and he ended up mowing my lawn too. Everything will green up and be uniform in no time. I didn't come inside again until almost eight o'clock when I took this photo. I still have to do some handwork here and there and I had to use my leaf blower in the front but that was fun. I am so glad to have this task behind me to maintain my field so trees don't grow back there. An unmowed field will become a forest in no time. 

I took this photo today at noon so show how nice my front lawn and garden are looking.

Today, it feels more like fall with an overcast sky and 63° at ten o'clock on Sunday morning with rain coming tomorrow. Tuesday will be filled with nothing but sunshine though and that makes me happy. Enjoy your Sunday. xo

Saturday, June 2, 2018

First Peony to Open 2018

My single ruffled white peony is always the first to open, followed by my red ones, and then the pink ones are last. This one opened when the sun came out yesterday after the rain. It was very translucent, as shown by the raindrops on the top petal. They are on the reverse side!!! For some reason, the petals have a pink tint when they first appear but change to a bright white when fully open and one of my Instagram followers says they look like fried eggs.
The sun is out, the sky is hazy and it's going to be hot and humid today with 84° as the high. Bring it on because tomorrow the high will be only 66° and will be wonderful for working outside. Mother Nature is so unpredictable, isn't she? Have a great weekend. xo

Friday, June 1, 2018

Giving Credit where Credit is Due

Flanders Poppies:
I forgot to tell you where I found the link and ordering information for the Flanders Poppy seeds.

Karen Heniger @karen_in_va formerly from Connecticut posted the photo, ordering information, and planting instructions on Instagram as her Memorial Day Post. Click on her link and make sure you view all three photos. Thanks, Karen ! ! ! She is one of my favorite frequent posters on Instagram and a long-time follower of my blog.

I was happy to find the photo below on Instagram. This is how I am going to plant my poppy seeds.

Could anything be more beautiful than this stunning bed of red poppies, growing at Amanda Cutter Brooks' Fairgreen Farm in Oxfordshire? I think not. 
Happy Friday. Happy June. Now summer can officially begin. xo

Thursday, May 31, 2018

Photos Around My Cottage

Potted plants on my balcony. The pink geranium in the beautiful white ceramic pot with matching saucer has finally adapted to being outdoors again after a long winter inside. The blue flowers on either side are lobelias. I have never had them before but I'm looking forward to seeing them grow. The five pots in the fabulous galvanized tin planter from a rummage sale have nasturtium seeds that should be sprouting soon. Fingers crossed. The ones I planted in the front two weeks ago are already up.

The plant identification spike names this variety as "Heat Upright Dark Blue Lobelia" with improved heat resistance. They should be right at home on my hot balcony with no shade until mid afternoon. The flowers are self cleaning and need no dead heading. How great is that? 

These lamb's ears were transplanted to a back garden against my foundation and they are loving the support of a wall to their backs. They should be blooming soon and will be able to hold the weight of their heavy flower heads that the pollinators love. 

This amazingly beautiful sky with a moon was photographed from my balcony at dusk five days ago. In no time at all after I snapped this shot it was pouring rain. We have had more rainy days than sunny days and the upcoming first week of June from Friday to Friday shows nothing but dark days, most with rain. Oh well, what can you do?
I can't believe it's already in its last day so I'll say goodbye to May. Maybe her promised flowers will be more beautiful in June. xo

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Shaker Kitchen in UK Showroom

Here is a larger view of the kitchen I posted yesterday while wishing I had more photos of the room. Presto, my wish was granted! One of my readers and followers found a link! Thank you so much, Leslie. This kitchen is in a deVOL showroom in England and all the bespoke elements are swoon worthy. Click to see other views of The Loft Kitchen

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

A Country Kitchen to Love

I love this kitchen island with lots of drawers and two open shelves at the end. This large kitchen has a farm table too instead of bar stools. Yay, and a window seat too. The floorboards look old but the construction looks new; perhaps it's a restoration. I couldn't find any additional photos but I know I would like the rest of this kitchen.

Monday, May 28, 2018


The red poppy is an internationally recognized symbol of remembrance for veteran sacrifice.
Each seed packet sparks awareness and conversation about the WW1 Centennial as it honors the legacy of the 4.7 million American veterans that served during World War I.

These seed packets would be great to include in your Christmas cards this year and the funds will help build the National WW1 Memorial at Pershing Park in Washington DC.
If you act NOW your donation is worth twice as much because the Pritzker Military Museum and Library will match your donation!

In Flanders Fields

Sunday, May 27, 2018

Bunny Mellon Embraced Friendly Weeds

Giant Mullein growing in her poolside gazebo.

Vanity Fair once described Bunny Mellon as the “high priestess of pruning and pleaching” for her devotion to gardening and personal love for pruning. While Bunny had an affinity for picking wildflowers and celebrated vegetable gardens, she loved pretty weeds as well.

Verbascum thapsus, a biennial plant, was once used as an herbal treatment for coughs, congestion, chest colds, bronchitis, and inflammation. For most of the year, the huge, furry leaves flourish under Bunny’s gazebo, stationed next to her display greenhouse. She felt that weeds were friendly, and often added to the beauty of her home, hence why the weed mullein was allowed to sprout between the stones. Its common name may have come from the Celtic term meaning yellow.

Read the entire article at Oak Spring Garden Foundation

Happy Memorial Day. It's cold, dark, and rainy here at my cottage but I don't mind. xo
The above link will lead you to my previous posts commemorating this holiday, celebrated each year on the last Monday in May.

Saturday, May 26, 2018

My New Glasses: Eyewear

I have never mastered taking selfies so this is my version that looks like a double exposure. My reflection in one of my balcony doors also looks through to one of my living room walls. I wanted to show you my new glasses and the photo below is an enlargement.

I am very camera shy and I can take better photos of myself than anyone else.

This closeup shows the subtle colors in the tortoise-shell frames. My old ones had smaller lenses and wire frames with nose pads. They were quite comfortable but not that becoming. I bought them because I had clip-on sunglasses that fit and soon after I got those glasses, I lost the clips, so that was a wasted effort in economy. I have clip-ons that fit my new glasses too but I didn't realize it until I found them in a drawer full of old glasses. I can see more clearly out of my new frames but when I watch TV in bed, I can see better out of my old wire ones since the lenses are smaller. My new eye doctor tweaked my left lens making it easier to read street signs so, overall, I'm happy. I think it takes a long time to get used to your own reflection in a mirror before you look like yourself to yourself if you know what I mean.
Enjoy this long Holiday Weekend. Be safe if you are on the road. xo