Friday, August 29, 2008

Familiar, yet not...

This little washstand has stood in our dining room, in the same exact place, since I was a little girl.  My mother had a washstand set on it -- a large bowl and ewer, with accompanying pieces all in a pink floral pattern.  I'll show them to you some time.

I tend to have flowers on it in summer, and branches with berries in the fall and winter.  My $6. thrift store silver coffee pot sits here now, along with some butler's crumb picker uppers.  What do you call those things?

Here is a closeup shot of the washstand.  Apparently at some point, the drawer pulls were changed out.  I used to love to go through all the things my mother kept in these drawers -- old vintage cards, newspaper clippings of her wedding, and an old Brownie camera.

This is  a pewter coffee set that my father gave to my mother for Christmas one year.  How she loved that gift!  She would proudly bring it out at every holiday.

I have a lot of mirrors in my house -- not because I like to look at myself (yuk!) but because they capture the light from outside and make a small, dark house a bit brighter.  One of the other things I love about the mirrors is that they reflect little visions of my rooms that seem almost unfamiliar.  It's like looking at an entirely different place!

We will be enjoying a quiet holiday weekend here at home.  I hope you all have fun over the next few days, and I will see you on Tuesday.  Happy Labor Day!


I just wanted to give a great big "Thank You!" to all of you who have voted for my photos by clicking on the widget at the top of my blog.  You are all wonderful bloggy friends!  There are two days left before the end of the contest, so I guess I will hear soon.  Keep your fingers crossed!  :)

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Go Away

Hey, keep it down, will ya?  I'm trying to sleep here.  It's not easy getting 18 hours a day, you know.  You people have no idea of the dedication it takes to be a cat.

Wait, what is that?  The vacuum cleaner?!  Are you serious?  You know I hate that thing.  Why do you need to ruin a perfectly good ten hour nap with the vacuum cleaner?  To clean up the cat hair?  Seriously, cat hair is a great improvement to this furniture.  I'm just sayin'.

Na na na na na na na.....     I can't hear you...

Just go away and take that stupid vacuum cleaner with you.  And do it now, before I have to get off this couch and make you. 

 I'm the world's most efficient predator, you know.  They said so on that Discovery Channel program.  Or maybe it was TLC --  I don't remember. 

 Anyway,  don't make me unsheathe my claws.  You'll be sorry.  Once I use my whiskers to find your windpipe, it's all over, baby.  Actually, I'm not sure what a windpipe is, exactly, but I'll....   figure....  it....  out.....   zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz


Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Tray Elegant

We're having a little fun with trays here today.  (Yes, I am easily amused.)  The large tray above belonged to my mother.  The milk glass cup and saucer and cachepot are from my collection.  As always, you can click to enlarge any picture.

This tray was an ebay purchase.  The silver coffee pot was $6. at a local thrift store, and the cup and saucer belonged to my mother.

I found this hand-painted tray at our local Visiting Nurse's Rummage Sale.  I love rummaging amid all the dross to find a beautiful bargain.  The cup and saucer are my every day china, and thrift store silver holds the wildflower bouquet.  

So there you have it -- Tray (Tres) Elegant!

Monday, August 25, 2008

A Visit to the Park

I feel as though I am running out of things to blog about recently, so I thought I would just share a few pictures of a nearby park with you today.  We used to take our kids to this park when they were little.   They loved to walk the path around the pond, and see the Canadian geese and swans. 

There is a small island in the center of the pond, where the swans nest.

Aren't they beautiful?  

If you look carefully, you can see the fish who seem to be looking for their next meal whenever you approach the water's edge.

I hope you all have a wonderful week.  Hopefully, inspiration will strike me before tommorow, and I will have something more for you...     :)

Friday, August 22, 2008

Sunny Faces

Just a few sunny faces for you today, to wish you a happy weekend.  It has been a hectic week here at our Little Red House, and we are all looking forward to a quiet weekend.  Have a happy one!  :)

Thursday, August 21, 2008

First Chance

My favorite thrift shop, Second Chance, closes for the summer.  They open for one day in August, called "First Chance at Second Chance."  Here are a few things I picked up yesterday, some for me and some for my friend, Robin.

This is a tiny sauce boat, about four inches in length, $2.  I already have a smaller, plainer one.  I feel a collection coming on!  :)

Some framed pressed flowers to join my growing collection.  These are not pressed flat, but almost look as if they are in a shadow box.  A bargain at $3.

An old painted tole letter box.  This will look great in my kitchen.  I think my rooster salt shaker likes it...

This one is for Robin.  She is on vacation now and couldn't go to the sale.  I think it will look marvelous in her bar or family room, where she has hunting themes.

A painted glass decanter.  Robin collects fox hunt themed items, and I gasped when I saw this as it is perfect for her.  I can't wait to show it to her -- I'm sure she will love it!

Well, that was my haul at "First Chance at Second Chance."  Pretty good, huh?

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Country Life

This is one of our local farm stands.  I shot this photo as an afterthought, really, just because my camera happened to be handy and I liked the scene with it's near vintage truck and brown shingled barn and table of bright zinnias.  But when I look at it now, I see more than the sum of it's parts.  I see a way of life that clings precariously to the edges of my rapidly changing community.  

When I was growing up, the roadsides were filled with joe pye weed, and sunflowers and chicory and queen anne's lace.  Now they are curbed and manicured.

Neighbors planted gardens, with vegetables and a few cutting flowers, and left the occasional gift (usually a giant zucchini) on your doorstep.

Farms like this one dotted the landscape.  They were not always beautiful in the strictest sense of the word, but they were utilitarian.  And their beauty sprang from a sense of purpose and rightness.

Now they are few and far between, and seem to perch uneasily amid all the McMansions that have been built here in the past few years.  I didn't always fully understand the observation that "you can't go home again."  But it is beginning to sink in.  I have never left home but even so, it has changed around me.  And it is a sad realization.  

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

On My Walls

I just love this book, with all it's beautifully framed and hung artwork.  I probably have way too many pieces of art on my walls, and I find it hard to resist any prints, watercolors or needlework that I find in my thrifting jaunts.  Here are a few of the things that hang on my walls:

Old family photos.  This is my great aunt as a child, with her mother.  I love old photos, even if they are not any relation.  But having some relations in old photos is almost as good as having paintings of your ancestors.  If I had any of those, they would take pride of place.  But alas, my ancestors were all poor immigrants.  I guess I'm lucky to have the photos.

Architectural prints.  This is one of a pair from Dublin.  I love to bring home at least one old print from everywhere we have visited.

Botanical prints.  I have a major problem passing up any I see.  This one was about $6. at a flea market/antiques fair.  Frame and all.

Hunting prints.  I used to ride when I was growing up, so I love hunting prints.  This one is from England, where we visited just before my son was born over 20 years ago.  There were a series of these in the shop, and I would have loved more, but we could only afford one.

Pressed flowers.  This is a rather recent obsession, started last year when I found a few pretty examples in the thrift store.  I love to think of someone taking the time to pick and press these, and then to frame them in such a loving way.

Embroidered pictures.  Again, I love the care that went into making these.  I love flowers in every form, so that is usually what I gravitate towards.

Watercolors.  Nothing too fancy, just amateur works that are inexpensive but show a love of place or subject.  I'm definitely a country girl, so I love landscapes and natural subjects.  I posted about this painting here.

Beadwork.  I guess I am drawn to the domestic arts here.  Something you would see in an old English country house.

Something small, something French, something fabulous.  I love this little barnyard scene.  Whimsy called to me here, and the fact that there are roosters pictured.

I have lots more (too many, really) to show you, but I'll save them for another post.  What sort of art do you hang on your walls?

Monday, August 18, 2008

Greetings From Philadelphia

I just wanted to share some photos of Philadelphia with you today.  (Click on any of the pictures to enlarge them.)  The photo above shows City Hall, with it's wealth of architectural detail.

Here is the view from our hotel.  The city is filled with a lot of  these beautiful old brick townhouses.  

Here is a very lovely church door.  Sorry, but I don't remember the name of the church.

The steeple belonging to the same church.  Philadelphia's Center City is filled with wonderful old buildings.

Sculpture park near City Hall.

"Love Park,"  where kids on skateboards show off their moves.

Main Building, Drexel University.  A beautiful example of nineteenth century architecture.

A beautiful archway leads to a private garden off Locust Walk at the University of Pennsylvania.  What a gorgeous campus!

City Hall is lit up at night.  We had a very tiring, but wonderful time on our college visits.  Hope you all had a great weekend.  :)