Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Autumn Comes to English Valley

 When the Honey Locusts turn yellow and start to drop their tiny leaves, it's a sure sign that Autumn has come to English Valley.
 They are the first trees to lose their leaves.
 There is a yellow hue to the street and sidewalk, with the pleasant sound of crunching underfoot.
It only takes a day or two for the trees to be completely bare.  It's the beginning of the end of summer.

I've been nesting, even with warm temps and summer like weather.  I needed a change in the kitchen.
The easiest way to make a change is with paint.
 I sat on the floor with a small roller and paint brush in hand.
 I masked the hardware, and had at it.
The color is much more blue than the teal in this photo.
The next step is a dark wax that will tone down the blue, with a little distressing, it will be perfect.
A four dollar remodel.  

While my paint was drying, I figured out how to zigzag on my daughter's sewing machine.  The directions were Greek to me, and it took a scrap piece of fabric and playing with the length and width of the stitches to finally get it right.  I almost gave up, but with a little patience, pen and paper to take notes, I figured it out.  This old dog really misses her old machine.  Too many pillowcases did her in.

 I found this basket at the thrift and knew exactly what I would do with it once I got it home.  My garden is still filled with dozens and dozens of hydrangeas.  At the end of the season they are dry and papery and perfect to be cut.  I filled the basket and cleared the top of my old china cabinet.  
 I've loved this look for years, and now will enjoy it until the holidays and garlands and lights replace it. This cabinet is filled with milk glass, rose covered teacups, plates and glass hurricanes.  It's a bit of this and that, all pieces dear for different reasons.  

I've put a few harvest touches here and there.
 My favorite print of a Native American maiden, leaves and flowers...
 pine cones and candles.
 Thrifted tablecloths, a sweater covered candle, a planter filled with last years garland.
 Just a sleeve cut off a sweater I got for a song.
 On the mantle, a painting by my dear Aunt Sabina.  I'm pretty sure it belongs to my brother Jeff, but since it's here...
 Auntie Sub, as we called her, started painting late in life.  All of her many nieces and nephews have at least one of her paintings.  I am happy to have several.  Auntie Sub helped me through the hard time after losing my Mom.  After a hard life of her own, she still had the biggest heart, the most compassion and was  a great example of kindness and generosity.    
 Little touches, warm and deep colors.  

 "Home keeping hearts are happiest." Longfellow




 Check out the Beekman Almanac.  It's a magazine to savor.  Can't wait to buy their new book, A Seat at the Table.  Part cookbook, part storybook about the community of Sharon Springs, NY.  There's noting like a good magazine on a rainy day...and today just happens to be one.
He's a few things I found at the thrift.  These mugs made in England, a glass apothecary jar with glass stopper and even this rusty colored string spoke to me.  

Well, truth in blogging.  I had a post totally written yesterday, and lost it somewhere in inner space.
It's never a easy thing to try to recreate a written piece, but I gave it a try and here's what came outta me today.

Thanks for stopping by and for your kindness and friendship.
Enjoy this beautiful day.
Love, Penny

Monday, September 11, 2017

Time Well Spent


 Some weekends are filled with fun, and others are work filled.  We had a working weekend, but we took off a couple of hours for a walk.
 The English Walled Garden is my favorite at the Chicago Botanic Garden.
 Beautiful brick, benches, flowers and vines.
 Handsome guys who work so hard, they need a little R&R.
 Dappled light.
 Looks like Autumn.

" Know the true value of time, snatch, seize, and enjoy every moment of it."  Lord Chesterfield

 A wayward vine in a manicured garden.
 Morning Glories.

 A woman who loves this garden. (...and the man taking the photo.)
 So beautifully designed.
 A pop of red growing in an unusual way.
 Arbors filled with vines.
 Paths that draw you in.
 The carillon.  Have yet to hear a concert .
 We just heard the bells beautifully strike noon.
 Cranberries.
 Moss.
 A large gathering we passed through and then had the gardens mostly to ourselves.
 Great shadow from the table where we paused to let all the beauty around us sink in.
 Hydrangea of all shapes and sizes.

 Winding bridges.
 Russian sage.
 Then a quick trip down the road to the Lake... and we were rejuvenated.
On a weekend when so many were in peril, my thoughts and prayers go out to all affected by the recent hurricanes.
Thanks for stopping by and for your kindness.
Enjoy this beautiful day.
Love, Penny