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Friday, October 20, 2017


One podcast that I listen to regularly is Decorating Tips and Tricks. This podcast gives advice from three of my favorite bloggers Anita from Cedar Hill Farmhouse,

Yvonne from Stone Gable

and Kelly from My Soulful Home.

This three times a week podcast covers everything you want to know about decorating. They are funny and best friends. This is from their blog:

Your designers are here! Anita, Yvonne and Kelly sharing decorating tips and tricks. Get our advice, secrets and have some laughs along the way. Listen in, you’ll be inspired to create a beautiful home and LOL a lot! Seriously great decorators having some serious fun. Join us!

Episode 110 was Adding organic elements to your decor and it inspired me to look in my backyard where I picked up some pine cones.


They are big proponents of dough bowls so I put the pine cones in a small dough bowl that I had. I like the way it looks in my kitchen and gives a fall look.


Outside there are all kinds of signs that the Earth is preparing for the long winter’s rest.


Hydrangeas which were once so beautiful are dying back.


One last little daisy is holding on.


Thursday, October 19, 2017

Sense & Sensibility

Last night I attended a performance of Sense and Sensibility, a play adaptation of Jane Austen's book in  the Bromley theater at the University of Pittsgurgh at Bradford.
 Here it is described at their website:
Jane Austen is one of the most popular and beloved authors of all time. Born in the late 18th century, she wrote with great insight and wit about the lives of the English upper middle class. Her characters seem to drift through the inescapable life of leisure that only privilege can afford, yet are forever negotiating the reality of birth right and custom. Sense & Sensibility poignantly and cleverly illustrates the effects of economic uncertainty brought about by the common practice of the first-born male inheriting entire family fortunes, often leaving the rest of the family to fend for themselves.
Sense & Sensibilty is one of Jane Austen’s most popular novels. The characters live in a world in which choices are limited- especially for the women. The story revolves around the lives of two sisters, Elinor who is level headed and full of sense, and the hopelessly romantic, Marianne. After the untimely and unexpected death of their father, both sisters and their mother are forced to leave their comfortable lives, while their half brother and his wife inherit the family estate. The only hope for these two sisters is a profitable marriage. Seduction, courtship, love, heartbreak and surprise abound in this classic romantic comedy.

 I cannot say enough about the high quality of the actors of the Aquila Theatre. Not only was the acting supurb but the staging was amazing. On set was only two chairs and a small table, a setee, and a harpsicord all in white. Behind those was a large screen on which was projected the scenery correlated to each scene. There was constant movement as the actors entered and exited the stage or moved around it. Some of the woman's roles were played by men and one actor stole the show with his animated lines. 

This is how it is described by the theater's website:
Aquila expands the canon of classical works for the stage by adapating Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility in a bold and exciting new production. Directed by Aquila’s artistic director Desiree Sanchez, this production will incorporate her innovative use of space, movement, design, and sound. D.C. Metro said “Sanchez is wildly inventive, and the production choices made were carried out beautifully” and NY Theater Review says “her direction is polished and laser sharp. She gets the maximum amount of potential out of every stage moment, has exceptional attention to detail, and is a demiurge of direction.”

It was a most enjoyable evening. We are so lucky to have the University a few miles down the road from me which brings in this high quality entertainment.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

An early morning treat

What a feat I had this morning when I saw movement out my window and discovered deer in my yard. 

First they were in the back yard eating the apple peelings that we had left for them. And then they moved to the front and ate apples from the tree. There were seven in all. 

I noticed that there was always one whose job it was to stand back a ways from the others and watch for danger from the rear. 

Then off they trotted. It was marvelous to get a close up view of these magnificent creatures in their dark winter coats. 

Monday, October 16, 2017


Isn't he handsome?  Now that is not the only reason I can't wait for Sunday night to watch Poldark. I love this PBS series for the intricate writing. The scenery is breathtaking too. 

It's 1783 and Ross Poldark returns from the American War of Independence to his beloved Cornwall to find his world in ruins: his father dead, the family mine long since closed, his house wrecked and his sweetheart pledged to marry his cousin. But Ross finds that hope and love can be found when you are least expecting it.

Putting France In My Studio

I have converted a back bedroom into my painting studio. Dreama has encouraged us to have a space of our own in which to create.

It’s the perfect time to bring some France into

your creative space!

Never to be taken for granted, the place you

retreat to make magic is your playhouse.

Make some play time to refresh and move

things around in your studio— like traveling

some place new, it sort of messes with your

brain...in a delightfully good way!

New touches in your work space can bring

optimism and willingness to try new things

out at your easel—definitely a win/win.

When it comes to France, one of the simple

joys to love is the use of clotheslines.

Since clotheslines are for hanging things we

can totally justify having one in the studio!

A piece of twine and some old fashioned

wooden clothes pins can be used to hang

photos, inspirational messages, children’s art,

notes from loved ones AND it’s absolutely

perfect for hanging the pdf words and

quotes from this course!

Take your time sorting through what you

eyes desire to see at a glance and get

busy hanging out your beautiful “laundry”

This is how I incorporated that idea in my studio using quotes and my pastry pictures.

I also added lavender and a beautiful book containing photos and information about French villages.
A few faux ranunculus and a book with a small piece of aqua glass felt very French to me.
Many years ago I painted the closet doors as a French window. Even then I was longing for French inspiration. Even the bird’s eye maple dresser seems to fit in.
I love my painting studio.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Once upon a time in Provence

I am so enjoying my online painting course Once Upon a Time in Provence. Dreama tailored made this course to immerse us in the experience of being in France. It is more than just a painting course. Besides the detailed painting lesson videos she provides so much more. Each module contains a meditation video (who could resist standing in the middle of a lavender field), a French speaking lesson with French quotes, a recipe, a tour (so far I've been to a winery and a flower market), and a link to a private Facebook group.  What I love most about the lesson is that the painting is done all in one setting, called ala Prima. When I sit down to paint I know that it will be done when I get up. Another thing I really like is that although there are six weeks of lessons there is no hurry. Dreama asks you to take your time and enjoy the experience. THe course will be available for a year so there is not rush to get through it. Since I have had a very busy three weeks I have only done week one and two. This is my painting for week two:

Friday, October 13, 2017

How do you feel about Autumn?

These days, these days. October is flying by like the leaves blown by the wind. The rain this week will be pushed away by nice weather tomorrow. We have put off gathering all the summer outdoor things because we wanted to sit outdoors just a little longer but the time has come.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Can you say gloomy?

Yesterday was a day of rain..all day..and sometimes very hard. It was a day to tuck yourself inside the house. Some say gloomy, I say cozy. The dark encourages me to light the candles and make a little hygge.

“Look at how a single candle can both defy and define the darkness.”
Anne Frank

Currently reading….Unbelievable by Katy Tur, an NBC reporter who covered Trump during his campaign and now afterwards. It’s an inside look at being on the trail with Trump and her thoughts on his election.

Gloomy (I mean cozy) days are great for cuddling up with a blanket, a cup of tea, and a book.

In honor of my mother

IMG_8105My mother was an excellent cook.  It was simple Southern food but delicious. At Chris’ we made an apple turnover…like a pie only with icing. It was always a favorite of ours growing up. Mom used to save some pie dough for cinnamon sticks. And Linda had brought a chicken pot pie from Costco that rivaled my mom’s.

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