Sunday, August 31, 2014

{Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real}~ August 31, 2014

We are all waiting with eager anticipation for the second grandchild to make her appearance.  It's a special kind of anticipation that doesn't happen very often.  Hopefully, I'll have pictures to share next week!


Sometimes, it's just Man of the House and I for supper and then we eat at this little table for two by the window.  The table and chairs belonged to his grandparents and then his parents and are of a very good quality.  The blue and white china sets off the wood tones beautifully . . . or maybe it's the other way around.  Either way, the dishes and furniture seem made for each other, don't they?  This day, we were having a simple meal of good ol' bangers and mashed and a plain vegetable.  This kind of meal is among our favorites.  We are hobbits at heart and like plain food and plenty of it.  (Yes, we had leftovers! :) )


We are mostly settled in our new house, but there are still quite a few jobs needing to be done that have little to do with the livability of the house but everything to do with its aesthetics and homeyness.  One of them was attaching the headboard on our bed.  It's a stinker to attach, but Dave came up with a better solution than we had before, and voila!  It makes the bed and even the room feel more finished. 

Yes, the walls are  . .  orange.  I'm getting used to it and I'm not sure I'd want to change it even if we could.  It is bright and sunny, which I think we'll be glad for this winter.  The bathroom, on the other hand, is even brighter and more intense than this.  I will show it to you someday.


This is too real for me!  You see before you a picture of a snake--yes, a snake!--that got into the house nobody knows how for sure.  Dave thinks it came in on his shoes after a sunset trip to the compost pile, which is likely.  The little fellow was about six inches long, approximately half as round as a pencil, and had a red ring around his neck.  We looked it up and found out that he is a northern ring-necked snake. Dave removed him to the outside post haste, where he definitely belonged and was glad to get back to.  

I apologize for the poor picture quality.  The snake was moving fast, Dave was waiting with the dustpan, and I didn't have time to adjust my camera settings or focus or anything.  The floor is really a dark gray slate, though you would never guess it from this picture.

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Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Beauty Around the House

A rainbow. . .

"Beneath the cross of Jesus I fain would take my stand."

Yummy goodness from the bread machine, that blessed invention!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

{Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real}~ August 24, 2014

Whew, is it ever hot around here!  It looks like summer decided to show up after all.  Most kids have returned to school, but we still have two weeks of vacation left, sometime during which granddaughter #2 should make her grand entrance. Anticipation mounts!


This corner is between a bedroom door and an outside door.  Though I do not love the color of the walls, this quilted wallhanging Hannah made me goes there very well, does it not?


We were happy to have out-of-town friends stay with us while they were getting their son settled in at college.  It looks like we will be seeing a lot more of them over the next four years.  That's one of the benefits of our moving to a college town.

Here are some of the goodies I made for while they were here~

This is the first time I've used this cakeplate to actually hold a cake. . .

Blueberries have been on a terrific sale
 lately.  They made yummy muffins!

In other news, Hannah's Etsy shop (see sidebar) is gaining speed.  Here is her latest WIP~

It makes me happy to see her being so industrious and creative.  I wonder what this will be. . .

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Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Beauty Around the House

Scenes from our house~

The view at twilight from our front door.

This little guy (gal?) was crawling slowly but purposefully on our deck railing today.
I can't get enough of these zinnias and Jerusalem artichokes!

(Yes, I am posting something other than {phfr}!

Go get your smelling salts, everyone.

When I started this blog, I had visions of writing lots of erudite posts on Deep Subjects, but that has never materialized.  Rather than be frustrated at my inability to get anything down on paper at all, I'm going scale my expectations waaaay back and just try semi-frequent postings of pictures of happenings at our house~ pretty things, homey things, comforting things.  I may make some commentary from time to time, but mostly it will just be pictures.  It seems the idea of "home" has fallen on hard times, and it's my hope that I can show in my own small way that home is worth the effort.  Don't expect Martha Stewart, but do expect a real home with a real family living in it in all our glorious imperfections.)

Sunday, August 17, 2014

{Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real}~ August 17, 2014

I made these muffins last week and even took pictures . . . or so I thought.  I can't find them anywhere.  They were going to be my {happy}, and now I am rather sparse in the picture department this week.  Alas and alack.  Trust me when I say they were delicious!


We've been in this house for two and a half months, and I haven't really shared photos yet.  That's because I'm still deciding what to do about hanging pictures, etc.  Not only are there our own pictures to think about, but there are also my in-laws' pictures, which consist of my mother-in-law's parents' artwork.  So I can't go about it willy-nilly and still do the job justice.

I will show you this, however.  I didn't stage this.  It is just how I found it.  One of the good things about moving is that your books end up in different places and the reshuffling means that forgotten titles are rediscovered.  That's the case with this one, which I bought on clearance after the excitement about the new millennium died down round about 2001.  It hadn't been read in years, but Hannah pulled it off the shelf to read while she ate a snack.

Once again, I cannot claim credit for the flowers, but I am happy to reap the benefits! :)


Every day, we video chat with our darling granddaughter and her wonderful parents for about half an hour.  It keeps us connected even though we are hundreds of miles apart.  One of the highlights of our time is reading a few books together.  This is the pile that has accumulated.  Current favorites are The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Farmer Duck.  ("How goes the work?" we ask.  "Quaaaaaaack!" says Arane.)  If you don't know Farmer Duck by Martin Waddell, it is worth looking for.  I've never read it to a child who didn't love it and who didn't join in with "quaaaaack!" after a few read-throughs.

{My Husband's Happy}

Dave brought home a truckload of manure from the local stables, which has mountains of it, as you can see, all free for the asking.  It will go a long way to making this Missouri soil a medium that plants will like living in . . . next year.  I don't think anything makes Dave happier than hauling around heavy things in the back of his old, dented pick-up!

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Sunday, August 10, 2014

{Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real}~ August 10, 2014

Dave and I celebrated our 27th anniversary on Friday with a trip to the St. Louis Art Museum.  It was a bit of a drive, but after three years of living in Nowhere, USA, we count a drive of two hours as nothing.  Our time there was refreshing to our souls if wearying to our bodies.

{Pretty} and {Happy}

The museum sits in the heart of Forest Park, which is as lovely as any park I've seen.  The building itself is the only permanent building left from the 1904 World's Fair. 

A walking path that runs in front of the museum.
The view from the front of the museum across the park.
St. Louis IX of France
A vestibule that leads to the antiquities gallery

One of the many galleries
The museum houses many well known works of art.

Winslow Homer's The Country School

Monet's Water Lilies

Van Gogh's Stairway at Auvers


What's so funny about Gilbert Stuart's famous portrait of George Washington, you ask? 

Nothing at all, but look at his comment about the money-making possibilities of selling copies!


I do not understand the artistic significance of making metal trees when you've got the real thing right there. . .

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Sunday, August 3, 2014

{Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real}~ August 3, 2014

Hello, everyone!  I just have {pretty} and {happy} this week . . .


My in-laws were diligent gardeners, so we are now reaping the benefits of their hard work.  Jerusalem artichoke:

And purple phlox:

Fresh cut cedar in the wood pile, making me look forward to winter!

But in the meantime, I'm enjoying summer.  The view from our deck:


Around here, we love flowers and must have them, but we give vegetables a fair shake too. Here's the start of our vegetable garden:

Yes, it's next to the driveway and will be one of the first things you see as you pull up.  It's the sunniest, flattest spot there is on the property, but we still had to terrace it a bit.  Dave was the mastermind behind it; I helped by holding and fetching a good deal.  Now we will work on the soil (lots of compost and manure, hurray!) and be ready for planting next spring, Lord willing.

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Catching Up

Lake Michigan--gorgeous! It really has been two months since I last made a blog post!  This summer has been full of traveling, gardening...

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