ode to summer

as summer is beginning to fade away i thought i'd post some photos that just never made it to being a post of their own for one reason or another and a few that are definitely reminders of our summer.

our neighbors tree that rudely sheds this stuff everywhere.
i was going to title this post - i'm pissed.
 but then i remember that after this shedding, the tree leafs out and gives me shade.  so i shut up.

not much of a story here.

rosebushes so heavy with blooms they are falling over.

hundreds of roses.

freshly mown grass.
i was going to do a story of how we don't use any power tools to do gardening but i didn't think anyone would believe me.

laundry drying in the sun.

converse drying in the grass.

a house that is still red.

sticks propped in the windows to hold them open.

freshly washed slipcovers.
i was going to do a tutorial on this, but i thought the excitement would be too much.

cool showers and aveda calming bodywash.
larry was hoping for a tutorial on this.

 a cookbook collection story that was never told.
here's the story.  these are my cookbooks.

a behind the stove tiling story never told.
here's the story.  we tiled the wall behind the stove.

my favorite boots.
here's the story.  they were my first ebay purchase and at the last second, i beat out someone named doobiegirl. that kills me.

remember the throwaway charm of chinoiserie?  thank you again jane.

tacos, sangria and a dishtowel from leslie, the hostess with the mostess.

i just like this shot.  double click.


  1. This may be the best post I've read on your blog! I liked every bit of it -- couldn't pick a favorite picture. Well done.

  2. Dear Janet, I love the dry sense of humour behind each of the captions!! An eclectic mixture of images which together become a fascinating whole. Whatever, they have certainly brightened up a wet, cold and cheerless afternoon.

  3. The randomness of these pictures tell a great story in itself ~
    I loved every one of them and loved this post the best!

  4. Hi there Janet... Our local garden centre had the most amazing sale this past weekend and I thought of your advice on the hydrangeas, as we picked up 3 lace cap ones... they're in the garden now, in dappled sunlight and getting plenty of water... we have a mini heatwave here at the moment... so they're proving very thirsty... I also picked up a stone garden ornament... I was never one for garden ornaments, but you have inspired me! Oh, and on a side note, your kitchen floor is amazing! Lx

  5. Where do you get all your chandeliers? Probably makes no difference since I live in a whole other country, but still ...


  6. Nice post! Love your kitchen floor tile - I have the same tile in my bathroom, love your boots, I have some red cowboy boots too! Love your red house (I know you'd rather have white, but I love the red),love your roses - here in the south, roses sleep thru the summer, only to come back in full force thru December or January - at least I have something to look forward to, right? And I really love the final pic! Karin

  7. Dear Janet,
    What a lovely way to start my day - with a smile. Your descriptions were too funny. And I would love a tutorial on how to wash a slipcover!! We just bought a few IKEA items and washing the slipcovers has given me pause...pause in that they're still in their plastic wrap because I'm afraid to wash them. ; )

  8. trina - i will be glad to give you a tutorial on slipcovers. not the one larry wanted though.

  9. I have white slipcovers and 4 kids, help me!!!

    Feeling nostalgic for summer already!

    This post has it all!x

  10. Hi Janet,

    You are so damn hilarious!!! I agree this is a great post...

    I love your kitchen and I want white subway tiles someday in my kitchen when it gets a makeover. Also our next living room furniture pieces will be slipcovered...not just because they look great but because they are washable.


  11. I agree. Wonderful post. I think it stands out because it's so much fun to see the totality of your days, all the bits and pieces are the texture. And you're funny:).

  12. I feel like I have just spent a day with you Janet...I adore this post.
    Your comments are so natural and genuine, just like you.

    Your red boots are rocking my world here this morning...I love red shoes, but I never ever thought of boots and why not!
    I want to get some NOW!
    (so much for my not shopping)


  13. Janet

    My heart weeps for that poor broccoli. Stove tiling, I would do the same. The roses... time to make potpourri.

  14. Janet...I am so glad you stayed..You seem like a very good down to earth person..please give us the slipcover tutorial,or at least give Larry his on cool showers and calming body washes!!!! Your pictures were great,do you make your own Sangria? I may need some for the end of the week....the weather here in the Boston area is not only frying us, but the reports are Earl the hurricane is going to visit!!!! Ellen

  15. OK Jan, you got me laughing but really...Remember my old stove? Well I finally had, *HAD it* with it . The durn thing is now retired on our patio. Looks kinds cool but a waste really. We FINALLY stepped into the 21st century and bought a brand new Maytag stove. Darn it though it doesnt have feeties like the old stove. Cooks food MUCH BETTER. Function over style works for me now. ;)
    My old stove would look crazy good in your kitchen

    Dont worry we didnt go too crazy,
    your Desert Rat sister


  16. Love it! Some people could have blathered on and made a whole series out of your one line summaries. I like that you get to the point with a sense of humor.

    I too would like to get the slipcover tutorial.


  17. So sad that summer is coming to a close. I love fall but I never like to see summer end, particularly the daylight.

    Who knew so many people would have soiled slipcovers? I need to wash mine too!

  18. This is my favorite post on your blog. Thank you.

    My white canvas slipcovers are over 15-years-old. They have survived several cats and an ex-husband who smoked. I only wash them once a year because I am lazy... but they still look great! Now I have to get a matching slip cover made to camouflage the awful Victorian settee that my new husband inherited from a great-aunt in Alice, Texas. White slip covers have many virtues! ;)

  19. Janet,
    Your home, your kitchen, your floors, your light fixtures, your garden, your yard, your slipcovers, your boots are beautiful!
    Love this post.

  20. So you're the one who got my boots....luv doobiegirl

  21. Personally, I love that your cottage is red- and it is a good red too.

    I also had a favourite pair of cowboy boots a million years ago. I bought them at Holt Renfrew in Toronto. They were the last pair and on sale- I never would have been able to afford them otherwise. They came all the way up to mid knee- burgundy with gorgeous pink cabbage roses and green leaves. The trouble was, they were at least 3 sizes too big for me...they would enter a room a good minute before the rest of my body did, and I would be exhausted from the weight of them by the end of the day! They were a thing of beauty though- Doobiegirl would have been so jealous.

  22. rebecca, edith and sarah - thank you for your comment and it's hard to believe this is your favorite post. but i'm good with that. thanks.

    laura - good luck with your hydrangeas. the garden club ladies tell me this...the first year they sleep, the second year they creep and the third year they leap. we'll see about that.

    sue - the chandeliers are from ebay and junk stores.

    trina, belinda & linda - slipcover care coming up.

    lpc - thank you for your sweet comment.

    leslie - i keep telling you that i'm not that nice.

    amy - i had to eat that broccoli or i'd starve.

    ellen - my sangria recipe is under the label food on my sidebar.

    jeanne - god, i loved that old stove.

    julie - i didn't blather?

    steve - yes it is sad to say goodbye to summer, this has been a good one.

    jw - you had to go get a 2nd husband!

    carol - thank you, you are too kind. really.

    kelley - i've suspected you all along.

    slim - i see your love for cabbage roses goes way back. and i'm thinking of keeping the red. jack may be impressed by it one day.

  23. I too love your dry sense of humour Janet. That broccoli looks delicious. In your cookbook shot I was craning trying to see into your shelves. I can imagine someone as organised as you would have lovely cupboards and pantry. Now THAT would be a thrilling post (please do it).

  24. Sticks in the window, your cottage is STILL red, and now tutorials! It's just not fair. No wonder you're drinking Sangria in the afternoon.

    The Mea-gan

  25. Dear Janet, This post is just what I needed today. It's so real. Thank you. Hugs, Joyce

  26. fiona - if you want to see more of my kitchen/pantry you can go to the perfect pantry. lydia just profiled mine.

    honey - get home and paint this house white i'll keep you swimming in sangria.

    joyce - glad i could help.

  27. janet... i love this post... love the photos and the sense of humor... it all works baby... it all works... xx pam

  28. Hmmmm--this was great fun, a sort of blog verite' perhaps? (and every woman needs a pair of red shoes or boots) :)

  29. You're too cute, love this post and your yard/home is all so lovely my friend.

  30. Awesome post. DOn't know why but I love this post. You are so cheeky! I get in moods like that. Love the sticks in the windows. My mother lives in a very old house and we use sticks in all the upstairs windows. She is slowly replacing windows, so when I am home in October I will take a picture of the sticks. Thanks for reminding me! It is the little things like this that make an older house interesting.

    Love the chinoiserie wallpaper. Your house is gorgeous. Wish we had an interesting house. :(

    Living through you ;)

    xo Terri

  31. Thanks for the fab pics and good laughs. I need the slipcover tutorial--every time I have to wash and change mine I cuss and cry! And your cleaning tips would be nice. Your house looks so............SQUEAKY!!! Allegra

  32. Love this post...you had me crackin up! Your yard is so beautiful and I love,love,love your cute little red house :o)

  33. I LOVE the red, but to each her own.

    Re your beautiful stove... I don't detect an exhaust system/fan... are you able to use it without one? I just got a similar stove and am wondering what type of exhaust system to get... or if I *really* need one... Any advice?

  34. pam - thanks for dropping by baby.

    meg - i agree wholeheartdly about the red shoes.

    t - you are waaaay cuter.

    terri - i can't wait to see her sticks in the window. i love mine.

    allegra - you are too sweet and it's not that clean, i just don't have any kids at home anymore.

    kristen - thanks and you red lovers have got me thinking.

    anon - i have been waiting for someone to ask me about the lack of hood. i have gone back and forth with this issue. we were going to put one in and then could not decide which kind. so we put it off/ran out of money. then we got the money and now i'm really thinking i don't want one. first, one will really make the room look smaller and it already is small. second, i know what it's like to clean a professional hood and it sucks. there is a window right next to the stove and if anything smokes i open it immediately. surprisingly, there is not a lot of grease on the wall or ceiling. i check it all the time. so for now - i'm not planning on getting one. i hope this helps.

  35. You are just so special! Loved this post & your attitude!

  36. Hi...I just came across your blog and really enjoyed it. I am a California gardener too and I was trying to figure out what part of the state you are located in. I live and garden at Rose Arbors in a hot, hot, interior valley in Southern California. Stop by and visit me sometime.(-: If you live in a zone cold enough to grow peonies I will be very jelous!

  37. I agree, Fun post! I loved seeing more of your cottage! Love the red cowboy boots, and the red polish! (I'm a red toe polish girl myself;) The tiled wall looks great!
    I would love a slipcover tutorial... I can't do them without cursing!


  38. sondra - thanks. you must love a bad attitude?

    lvq - i live in redlands which is zone 9 i believe. are you in the high or low desert?

    joan - oh, there will be plenty of foul language.

  39. HI Janet I just discovered The Gardener's Cottage and love love love it...now a follower! very cool and I like that deep watering idea, and love the tile behind your stove..where in Cali are you guys?

    all best


  40. Janet, I love you, you are so funny. I think we would get along in real life.
    This was a great post, do you know how many picture I have that tried to be posts? Lots. I think we should all do a post with all of our ideas that never made it.

  41. Such a fun post...your home and garden look so lovely! I have plenty of pics that never made it to posts too! Hmmm...maybe I need to dig some of them out?!?! LOL

  42. Thanks for your response! I think we, too, will continue to be 'hood-less' for the time being. So far, it has not created a problem. We can always put one in later, if need be. Just the two of us, and a four-burner stove (yours too, I think?), so it's not like we're generating oodles of heat. Love your stainless backsplash w/shelf, too!

  43. Dear Janet, As so many readers have said such a fun post, and then all the wonderful comments, and then all your spectacular replies. Just could not be better! Hugs, Joyce

  44. I am so taken by the photo of the sticks holding up your windows. Very much like the windows I grew up with, hence, a comforting feeling.

    I would love a close up of the tile behind your stove as I'm thinking of tackling something like that in the future.

    Your home is elegant, airy and beautiful. I never tire of seeing it.


  45. All these people with slip covers - I'm impressed! I've just got throws, and I wouldn't dare have them white.

    Toes (and varnish) like yours deserve those red boots. Groovy, girl!

    R xx.

  46. share my garden - i bet they are nice throws though. you english know how to live.

  47. Just found your blog and I love it! I bought the same red boots 25 years ago and they are still my favorite.

  48. Your commentary is just plain amusing! I love the kitchen, which I had not seen yet and your quiet, shady spot in the yard. Thanks for putting a smile on my face!

  49. You had such an adorable house. I can't help but long for summer as i used to dry my clothes in the sweltering sun. Why not include a shed in your garden, that would complete it.


kindness is never out of style.

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