this spot

this isn't the best picture but it is the best spot in my garden in the morning.
mainly it's b/c the scent of the roses mingles with the scent of the nearby honeysuckle and the scent of the orange blossoms just beyond the honeysuckle vine.

and it is so special early in the morning.
no one ever sees it at this time.  the scent is so heavy in the cool morning air.
on mornings i don't go to yoga i come here after my walk and have my tea.

i love drinking my morning tea out of these delicate tea cups.
i got a set of 8 of them at an estate sale for $5.
they say haviland france limoges on the bottom.
they are lovely and fragile.

do you have a spot in your garden that no one ever sees when it is just perfect?



striped porch

i cannot believe how fast this week has flown by!

i love my striped porch but
this is what it looks like after fall and winter has harassed it.
it's dirty and dingy and dusty.

two hours later and a bit of elbow grease 
it looks a lot better.

it's swept, scrubbed and the stripes repainted,
it's a new woman!

the spring fever frenzy continues around here.

being kind is always worth it.


roses in the house...and other things

good morning.

i hope you had a good weekend.
i did, mostly b/c i got a lot done in the garden and around the house.
i've got spring fever and it cannot be stopped.

my symptoms...

1.  sudden bursts of energy and creativity
2.  the desire to light a match to everything i own and start anew
3.  frenzied garden work
4.  wandering through nurseries in a confused state
5.  purging w/o regret
6.  sneezing
7.  regretting what i've purged
8.  feel free to add your own symptoms in the comments

seriously, i have been pouring over design magazines and reading every gardening book i own.
i've been talking with M who has caught it too.  this is dangerous b/c one of the  symptoms seems to be encouraging others to buy things that you really don't need.

but it has good side effects too...

i donated a bunch of stuff to the goodwill and took a quick look around while i was there.
found this vintage bamboo garden stool.

cute, huh?

and did you notice i painted the little record cabinet blue?
i think it should be a darker blue though, don't you?

the rose garden is in its first bloom.
the size and production of roses is astounding.
this may be the last time i can bring them in the house though b/c of my allergies.

i'm linking this to miss jane's fab blog, small but charming.
do join in won't you?



stripes and florals

hello again.
the first rose bouquet of the season.

it is hard to make sense of all the heartbreaking events coming out of boston.
our world has gone mad.

have a lovely weekend and lets all go out of our way to be extra kind this weekend.
i mean way out of our way.



an epic estate sale

hello everyone.
before i get into the epic estate sale and this burberry trench i'd just like to say thanks for all the wonderful comments on my last post on aging gracefully.  so many fantastic stories and wonderful ideas.  i love that we have a little community here with varied opinions that are all welcome.

so the estate sale...  
every once in awhile you come across a sale that is for lack of a better word - epic.
i've been to 2 in my life.  
they are the adult equivalent of disneyland i suppose.
every turn is an event that stuns the senses.

well that's how it is for me and one other nutcase i know who shall remain nameless.

some of you may have already guessed that the estate sale i'm talking about was miss doris'.

i wasn't even sure i would be able to go.  one, i might have had a flight to utah scheduled that i'd have to change and two, would i be able to handle it emotionally.
i did both.

  i was teary eyed as i waited in line on the first day of the sale.
reminiscing with neighbors and friends about miss doris.
i didn't know how i'd feel when i got inside. 
but i know she would have been in line to go to my estate sale if the tables were turned.
that is For Sure.

i don't know if you've been to many estate sales but generally they have a tinge of sadness to them.
you walk through a person's house who has recently passed away and you see everything,
down to their knickers and kitchen drawers.  you see just how that person lived and carried out their life.
it's a little sad and also very interesting.

this was the first estate sale i went to that i actually knew the person.
like i said, i was apprehensive.  and i'm sure some of you will think it wrong of me that i went at all.
but i'm glad i did go.

to say miss doris was a collector doesn't even come close to the truth.
it was like an archaeological dig through her beautiful life.
she and her husband were consummate collectors of well...everything!
and everything they collected was beautiful.
from clothing to china, art, sculpture, antiques, you name it.
i had been in her home many, many times but to see everything laid out, that is drawers and closets emptied, it was fascinating.  i really had no idea of the scope or depth of her collections.

so just minutes before the sale started the man running it laid the ground rules out for all of us.  no running, no boxes, only 10 people at a time in the house.
these were wonderful rules b/c oftentimes there is a lot of running and mayhem with people just frantically filling boxes with stuff.  so this was a nice touch, miss doris would have appreciated that.

so i being 2nd in line got in with the first group.
i knew exactly what i was looking for.
this burberrys trench and a little iron dog doorstop.
i knew i'd be thrilled if i got either but i also knew there would be a good chance the family would have gotten both items.

i searched high and low for the trench.  couldn't find it anywhere and assumed the fam did get it.
i did find the doorstop and was very happy.

i went through her massive and i mean massive colleciton of clothing and found the vintage i. magnin maxi dress.
i was very happy to have a small item from the house that i had long admired and something from her fashionable closet.

the next day i knew everything was going to be 1/2 off so i made sure we were first in line.
i went straight away to the vintage clothing section to have another look around and there it was...
angels singing...

*** the burberry trench ***

  i asked the lady overseeing that room where it came from and she said she found it deep in the back of the closet on a hook.  i really wasn't sure it would fit me as miss doris was teeny tiny.  but it did.

i can't really tell you what this means to me.
it's the first thing i ever noticed about her when i first moved here,
this sweet woman walking her poodle in her trenchcoat.

so now the trench hangs in my closet and i plan to wear it often and with joy.
and i know miss doris would love that.



aging gracefully

last week i went to my dermatologist to have my eyelid looked at.
i go once a year to have it checked.  i had squamous cell carcinoma in the same spot twice so i have to be careful.  while i was in the room waiting for the doc i couldn't help but notice all the new literature on the counter.  

it was kind of overwhelming.

latisse for long, fuller lashes (may cause irreversible dark brown specs on your iris though)

a plethora of fillers, botox and laser services.

he checked my eyelid and everything was fine and i went home.
but i couldn't help but wonder about all those products that are definitely aimed at my age group.
i'm 55 now and i know i am a candidate for every single thing being offered out there today.

is this how we are supposed to age gracefully?
i think it's cool if that's the course you want to take
but the thought that keeps popping in my head is who would notice or care?
and the big one...i don't think we are fooling anyone.
i tell you i see lots of faces that have been altered and enhanced and it never looks natural.

if you do your eyes then your cheeks and mouth look bad and vice versa,
if you do the whole face then you have that stretched too tight shiny look.

or now all of a sudden compared to the smooth skin on your face, your neck looks older.
and then the decollete and arms and hands.

and it goes on and on.

i'd have to have my whole body dipped or lasered in order for nothing to stand out.
i get stressed just thinking about it all.

so i've decided that i'm going peacefully and wrinkly into my future.

and if you plan to *fight it* all the way, i say kudos to you.

to each their own in this lovely world.

so what's it gonna be for you?
fight or surrender?



i. magnin

vintage maxi from i. magnin 

i don't know if any of you remember the i. magnin department store.
there was one near us when i was growing up and a visit to that store was a real treat.
there was a stillness and air of elegance the minute you walked inside the doors.
i remember going there once with my parents to pick up a black chiffon dress and jewelry that my mom had purchased for a special event.  i still have that jewelry.

and when i was first living on my own and working as a secretary, i bought a red velvet christian dior robe from i. magnin.  i put that robe on as soon as i got home in the evening and pretended i was glamorous.

so when i found this vintage maxi from i. magnin at the *epic estate sale* it brought back a lot of memories.

i did a little research on the department store and found a fascinating article here.
the original i. magnin store was located in san francisco and built in 1876.
it had 10 floors - one of which was dedicated to negligee's and corsets.

the website is a wealth of information on old department stores but the comments below the i. magnin post were so interesting.
i miss those old department stores, don't you?


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