Friday, January 31, 2014

Random 5 Friday

"If you so choose, each day can be filled with even more joy than the one before.
If you so choose, even the most seemingly random events can work in your favor." -- Ralph Marston

Greetings Cottage Friends and happy Friday.

I've gathered my randoms for the week. 

I find I'm really enjoying this exercise, as it reminds me of blessings and joy that comes into my life every day.

#1 - Tea Box Art

We drink a lot of hot herbal tea in the winter, Celestial Seasonings being one of our favorites.
This is a photo of the artwork on the Cranberry Apple Zinger box.  It's based on an original painting by Robert Giusti.  Isn't it charming?

#2 -  Salad Art

I enjoy the presentation of a colorful salad on a simple white plate; like the one I made last night for dinner.  Fresh spinach; slivers of red pepper, sweet onion and carrots; sliced cold chicken breast and garlic/herb feta cheese; dressed with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.  Simple, fresh, delicious and pretty.

#3 - Surprise

Dennis did the grocery shopping yesterday.  He surprised me with fresh flowers from the floral department.  I like the way this man shops.

#4 - Possibilities

A stop at our local Habitat Restore on Monday yielded another fabric score:  7 yards of Joan Kessler for Concord Fabric for $1.50.  That's less that 22 cents a yard.  It's probably from the 90's.  There's so much of it, I think the possibilities of how to use this fabric are endless.

#5 - Encouragement

My word for the year is "create".  I'm trying new things that may or may not work out, but that's not going to stop me from continuing to attempt something I've never done before.  I printed off this quote I found online, and it now hangs next to my desk to remind me not to give up.

What has brought you joy this week?



Monday, January 27, 2014

The Enchanting Cottage - Part Two

In Part One Captain has escorted his beloved Cottage Lover to The Enchanting Cottage owned by Steve the artist.

We left Cottage Lover in the breakfast room of The Enchanting Cottage. . .


Cottage Lover could not believe the wonder she beheld.

A strange creature floated above her; half woman-half bird.

Artist Steve seemed to read her thoughts. "That's Ladybird.  An artist friend of mine created her," he explained.

"She's magical.  She looks as though she could actually fly," Cottage Lover said.

Artist Steve smiled, and Cottage Lover thought she saw Ladybird wink at him.

Beyond Ladybird Cottage Lover spied the kitchen.


Now Cottage Lover loved kitchens almost as much as she loved Captain, and she loved The Enchanting Cottage kitchen more than any kitchen she had ever seen. 

Artist Steve had created the cabinetry himself.  Each cupboard door was hand carved and painted.

It was fantastical.


Over the stove hung a most unusual pot rack, enhanced by a carving overhead, and for a mad moment Cottage Lover thought to snatch the entire kit n' caboodle when Artist Steve wasn't looking.

For she loved everything about it.  The carved clock and roosters perched overhead,

the rooster corbel that supported the pot rack, and the hand forged  hangers another artist friend had made.

Cottage lover imagined it would be very pleasant to have such a pot rack in her own kitchen one day.

In the corner of the extraordinary kitchen -- in a little open box -- lived a fairy with a perpetual pout.

A parakeet, which was under an evil spell and could not sing, sat atop the doorway.  Cottage Lover suspected the pouting fairy had something to do with the poor parakeet's dilemma.

Between the kitchen and the breakfast room stood a cabinet which held the sink. There were no cabinets overhead.

The open space allowed for a view of the cottage garden through the stained glass window.  Cottage Lover suspected the garden must be splendid in the spring.

The kitchen towels occupied a very special place on the side of the sink cabinet.  They hung on a carved towel rod with the face of a beautiful princess.  Cottage Lover thought the princess looked a bit sad, and wondered if she was under an evil spell, too.

A delightful petite bowl rested between salt and pepper shakers on a whimsical shelf.

On one side of the kitchen a carved arch led the way to a short hallway.

At the end of the little hallway was a closet behind a door with elaborate trim.  To the right an arched doorway opened to the pantry and laundry room.

Cottage Lover walked in and smiled when she saw the row of mason jars filled with bounty from the garden on one pantry shelf. 

All the pantry shelves were handmade, and the backs of some of them were painted in a vintage style. 

Cottage Lover thought the laundry basket hanging on the wall was perfectly charming.

And she wondered why everyone didn't hang an antique clock in their laundry room, as Artist Steve had.

To be continued. . .
(Dear Readers, if you missed Part One of The Enchanting Cottage, you'll find it here.)
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Friday, January 24, 2014

Random 5 Friday

"If you so choose, each day can be filled with even more joy than the one before.
If you so choose, even the most seemingly random events can work in your favor." -- Ralph Marston
Happy Friday Cottage Friends ~
I've been very nostalgic for warm weather this week.  Not that's it's terribly cold here. Fortunately, we've had temps in the 40's.  But maybe that just makes me long for  even warmer weather. . . gardening weather.

Here's what I've been dreaming about, in color.

#1 - Blue
This is Winchester Bay. I took this photo with my iPhone last summer, when we were on our 5-week Oregon excursion.

#2 - Gold
Dennis participated in a plein air painting event on a farmette in Lyons, CO three years ago.  It was a magical place with beautiful gardens.  This is an edited version of a photo I took.  I played around with it this week, and gave it the look of a painting.

#3 - Orange
Nasturtiums tumbling over a stone wall in Yachats, Oregon. Another photo from our excursion.

#4 - Pink
A plethora of wild roses filled an area in our Colorado homestead.  I snapped this photo last year before we sold our home.
#5 - Red
One of my very favorite places in the whole word: Fawnbrook Inn, Allenspark, Colorado. Mieke's garden is like no other.

I'm so glad you  joined me for a look at my random colorful dreams. 
And now I must know, what have you been dreaming about this week?




Tuesday, January 21, 2014

The Enchanting Cottage - Part One

Once upon a time there was an artist named Steve
who lived in a cottage.
Steve was no ordinary artist
and Steve's cottage was no ordinary cottage.
Oh, it may have been ordinary at one time,
perhaps even plain.
But that was before Steve found the
plain little cottage and began to transform it
into The Enchanting Cottage.
One day Captain, the husband of Cottage Lover, came home
from a visit with  Steve.
"Cottage Lover," Captain said to his beloved wife,
"The Enchanting Cottage is unbelievable.
You must see it. I'll take you there.
And you absolutely, positively must take your camera."
So Captain and Cottage Lover
paid a visit to  Steve
and The Enchanting Cottage.
And Cottage Lover took her camera.

When  Cottage Lover walked into
The Enchanting Cottage
her cottage-loving heart skipped a beat.
For everywhere Cottage Lover looked
she discovered
something wondrous.
Something glorious.

Something. . .enchanting.

Every nook.


Every cranny.
Every corner
 brought smiles of delight to Cottage Lover's lips.
To be continued. . .
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