Thursday, June 26, 2014

Pretty in Pink...plants and plantings.

These pretty pink geraniums are putting on quite the show.

These were the same plants that I bought thinking they were white...
don't always trust the tags.

Geraniums are seriously economical, colourful and hardy too.

They look even better close up.

Look who has been sleeping on our front porch!
The neighbourhood cat that we have nicknamed Ginger.
He hangs around our garden and porch every day while his owner is at work.
Our cats carry on a conversation through the front window.
He's got a real "voice" and meows a lot.

The Sum and Substance Hosta is threatening to take over the front garden.
If you want a huge Hosta this is your best bet.

Under the eaves on the northern side of our bungalow we have planted a wetland garden...
it gets very little sun so we have chosen astilbes, day lilies, hostas, solomon's seal, ferns, and a wonderfully fragrant pink blooming rogersia.

This spot is a bit unkempt as it is a dry patch under the eaves that is home to one of our rain barrels.
The alstromeria has run riot and taken over and I distinctly remember the gardener who gave the seedlings to me saying "it is not the invasive variety" thankfully the flowers redeem their messy habit.

I am grateful for all the plants that I have been given over the years.
Gardeners generally possess a very giving nature.
They are keen to share their knowledge and plants.
I know that when we have a surplus of plants I put them out on the boulevard free for the taking.
Mr. HB made me a sign and it goes out about once a week with dormant orchids and garden perennials.

"The glory of gardening: hands in the dirt, head in the sun, heart with nature. 
To nurture a garden is to feed not just on the body, but the soul."

~ Alfred Austin ~

Until next time...take care and look for beauty in your daily round.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Arts and Crafts Potluck...

Many of our friends are heritage buffs and live in beautifully restored arts and crafts homes.
Recently Mr. HB and I were invited to a potluck with a group of like minded people and we enjoyed good conversation, wine and delicious food.
Potlucks are such a fun way of entertaining as they take the pressure off the host and hostess...
they have enough to do making the house presentable and setting the table.

Period light fixtures illuminate the home which is chock full of English arts and crafts collectibles.
(our Hostess is passionate about purple!)

Purple table runners and napkins sourced from Sur la Table.
Thomas Rosenthal dishes circa 1970.

I took flowers and arranged them for our Hostess in her Japanese arts and crafts green vase.

It is such a luxury to have a commodious table and a large dining room.

Food was plentiful...I sampled a bit of everything.

The blue hydrangeas were inspiring...
they made me think of Joni Mitchell and Blue...
which makes me feel nostalgic and take a trip down memory lane.

LOVE that the ladies of our family were helping Isla on the path of life...

Looks like the water is warm...
would be nice to keep swimming...

 I went to the grocery store and they had a big sign advertising the lottery prizes...
several million and so I succumbed and bought two tickets.
Not like we stand a chance but if you don't have a ticket you cannot win.

I think we won the lottery when we had our kids...
they are our greatest gift.

And with that I will close...
love and hugs,

Sunday, June 22, 2014

White themed post ~ OOTD

White has figured prominently in my days of late...
it keeps on popping up front and centre.

The Humble Bungalow Romneya Coulteri is blooming.

Allium in a simple creamy white vintage vase.

The Club Monaco jeans that I found last fall in a thrift store are getting lots of wear and they wash like a dream.
They are my "go to" jeans for summer.

I would have never entertained wearing white jeans when I was over weight...
don't know why really, but I guess I felt they might make me look extra large.
Who was I kidding? I was extra large.
I embraced denial in a BIG way...
Do you remember me mentioning that I avoided looking in mirrors and my reflection in store windows?
(out of sight out of mind)

a casual outfit today for running errands.
White tee top with grey stripes and Club Monaco jeans.

Franco Sarto sandals and ESQ watch.

I perused the new Marshall's in the Hillside Mall...
 it was my second visit so I had the lay of the land so to speak.

 I wasn't expecting to find anything but was immediately smitten by this white lace top. 
I had a similar one with long sleeves in an XL which I consigned and was missing that piece in my wardrobe so I figured that it was a good investment and one that I would get a lot of wear for summer...
I bought the large as the lining underneath on the medium was too snug over the chest.
The top was 70% off the regular retail price so it was a justifiable purchase.

A full lining is preferable as I don't want my under garments on display.

This pattern reminds me of the Scottish lace curtains that we imported when we first purchased our bungalow.
Our first two cats ripped them to shreds one day when I was at work and it was all I could do not to throttle them when I came home and saw that they were swinging gaily in holes large enough for each of them to straddle!
Those curtains hung in the living room window and were a substantial investment at the time.
I quickly learned how to sew drapes after that episode!

We decided to buy the Sophie Conran Portmeirion china.

I brought in some alliums as they look so interesting sitting in our white vases. 
(the cats are amused by these too and have been nibbling at them)

Sophie Conran sandwich platter and heart shaped dish.
I think we will buy her pasta bowl as it will be a versatile serving dish.

The shapes are uneven and have ridges like free thrown pottery.

The bowls are oblong rather than round.

I packed up all the other dishes and dropped them off at the charity shop.
I washed the dishes and wiped the shelves before putting all the new dishes into the cupboards.
It feels good to freshen up the kitchen and the house.

We don't re arrange the furniture or buy new furnishings very often as our bungalow is small and so if something new comes in, something must go out.

~ Living simply with less. ~

"Besides the noble art of getting things done, there is the noble art of leaving things undone. 
The wisdom of life consists in the elimination of non-essentials."

 ~ Lin Yutang ~

Friday, June 20, 2014

On the Hostess's Bookshelf...

Summertime reading has always been a luxurious pleasure.
One that I could hardly wait for when I was working...
When school would let out for summer I would eagerly peruse the shelf laden with books.
I'd read the book jackets and then decide which one to start reading...
you might have gathered that I collect books just for summertime reading.
I find them at thrift shops, garage sales and of course, our wonderful local book stores.

A fun light read, one that would make a good cottage or beach book.

I picked up this book mark at Chapters...
I usually use a piece of paper as I never turn down the corners of the pages...
having worked in a library for many years that habit does not sit well with me at all.

Chester thought it was a cat toy!

Here are just a few of the books that sit on the shelf waiting...

It took me a long time to read The Time Traveler's Wife because we were travelling at the time I was reading it and had so many interruptions and I could never just pick it up where I left off because of the time travel involved...I am hoping this one is easier to follow.

Mother liked this but thought it "a bit of a different book" 

On my toes today I am sporting Embarca dare you by OPI
a hot pink shade that shimmers with light.
Pedicures are a summertime luxury and one that I indulge in as sandal season is hard on the feet.

I am so grateful to have a wonderful gal who helps keep my feet in good shape.
I cannot do my toes anymore as I have poor eyesight and find it a challenge to bend over and paint with precision!

What books do you have set aside for your summertime reading?

TGIF it's Friday!
It will be a busy weekend...
a baby shower, a short boat trip and a potluck supper.

Whatever you have planned I hope you make some time to relax and put your feet up.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Hats...yes or no?

How do you feel about hats?
Are you confident that you have chosen the best style and shape for your head?

Hats are not my favourite accessory.
I need the protection from the harsh rays of the sun and the cold winter weather so I reluctantly wear them.
Straw hats make up the bulk of my hat collection and I regularly wear them on the boat and in the garden.

Chester playing with the strap on my Sloggers hat which I wear when riding in Mr. HB's convertble.
(it is made with recycled paper and polyester)

I'd love to feel more confident wearing hats.

Perhaps my awkward feelings are similar to those that some women have about wearing and tying scarves.
I have had many conversations with women who say that they love the look of scarves on other people but they get all muddled when trying to tie them and end up taking them off in frustration...
that about sums up my hat attitude.

I bought this vintage felt fedora a few years ago thinking that I would wear it.
I put it on, look in the mirror, laugh and take it off again.
This photo is a few years old, the hat still resides in my closet.

I think Adrienne looks fabulous in hats...she writes the fabulous blog Rich Life on a Budget.

This is my winter cold weather hat...
I wear it to keep my head warm.
(it looks much better on Isla than it does on me)

My gardening hat...

Mother and I ventured into the newly renovated Hospice Thrift shop on Cook Street and I spied a new hat.
I put it on and Mother said "that is lovely on you."
"You MUST buy it or I'll buy it for you."

The ladies in the shop agreed it was a great hat on me.
Hmm...was it?
well you can see it here for yourselves.

It is made of linen by the Lillie Cohoe Company which makes hats in Nelson BC.

 The hat is sitting on top of my bureau, 
I have looked at it everyday since purchasing it
I have tried it on several times
it has not been worn outside of the house.

I do love the hat but I wonder if and when I will wear it.
I'm wondering how you feel about hats...
maybe it's just me.

Where do you stand on hats?

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Classic Silverware A Tea Lover's paradise...

Classic Silverware is a fabulous shop and one that I cannot pass by without stopping in for a visit.
Their collection of silver and bone china tea cups is amazing!

Peeking in the window is not as satisfying as popping inside for a lingering browse.
I'm going to take you inside with me...

You can easily see the charm of this shop.

If you are looking for a special gift or to add a new teacup to your collection this is definitely the place to be.

Mixing silver and china patterns is so popular right now...
for your table setting or a picnic set you might search their sale bins.

If you have a silver pattern and need some pieces they have a huge inventory.
We fortunately found six soup spoons in our Silvery Lace Rogers silver pattern here a few years ago.

Floral tea cups are my weakness...
how to choose just one?

I love a tea party...
taking tea in the afternoon and using a pretty cup and saucer is one of life's little luxuries.

Do you see something that you'd like to buy in this shop?

If you cannot visit in person you might like to browse their website.

I didn't buy anything on my visit but there's always next time!

I really love those candelabras.

I'm going to put the kettle on...
a hot cup of tea is calling my name.

Take care.