Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Camellias and Chanel ~

Through out most of the year I take little notice of the camellias in my garden, they seems to flourish with little care and I simply take them for granted. Then...once a year, at a time when nothing else in the garden is blooming, they surprise me with their loveliness. Maybe it is that they don't want to share the stage with other garden stars.

My bushes are all quite old, probably original to the house which was built in 1927. Many of them have turned into trees, with wonderful open branches. The one below is not one of the biggest but is one of my favorites...

...it is a creamy  white color with just the slightest hint of pink, exactly the color I would like to paint the guest bedroom;  my next project.

 White camellias always remind me of Coco Chanel. When I was in Paris with my granddaughter we made a pilgrimage to Rue Cambon. the only thing that we could afford was nail polish, but the sales lady treated us with much charm and warmth and the purchase, minor as it was, came beautifully bagged... decorated with a white, silk camellia.

You must admit, they really are a beautiful flower.

Thank you for visiting.
This post has been linked to: http://ivyandelephants.blogspot.com/

Friday, January 24, 2014

Lost and found ~

I was talking to my daughter on the telephone the other night about of all things oatmeal cookies, and we both remembered a really good oatmeal cookie I used to make. I told her I would find the recipe and call her back; I was certain I knew exactly where it was. Well, as it turned out I didn't, it took me on a through search through all of my cookbooks and recipe files...I am somewhat organized...and  I couldn't find it. Darn, I hate loosing a good recipe.

 I was certain it was lost when I remembered the one place I hadn't looked, my old recipe box. There it was! Aunt Selma's Best Oatmeal Cookies. You can tell from the picture that this recipe got a lot of use. And I know why...they are delicious!

This morning I made a batch ~ totally yummy. Unlike traditional oatmeal cookies these have chopped pecans in lieu of raisins. 

I don't really know why they are so good, you will have to take my word for it. But so you can tell for yourself I am giving you the recipe...now, don't loose it!

Aunt Selma's Best Oatmeal Cookies

creme together:
1C shortening
1C white sugar
1/2 C brown sugar
then mix in one egg

Sift together:
1 1/2 C flour
1tsp soda
1 tsp cinnamon

Add to the creamed mixture along with: 

1 1/2 C oats
3/4 C finely chopped pecans
1tsp vanilla

Chill dough for one hour then put spoonful on greased cookie sheet (I use parchment paper)
and flatten with sugared glass

bake at 350 for 10 mins.

Bon Appetit 

Monday, January 20, 2014

From pest to asset ~

Growing between my house and my Mother's next door there is a very old, very big, and very rambunctious  split leaf philodendron. It really wants to take over the world and I am constantly cutting it back, thinking what a horrible pest it is. Then yesterday while clicking through Pinterest images I got the idea of cutting some of the leaves and using them in the house...everything doesn't always have to be flowers.

I filled one of my larger blue and white containers, plopped them in it and set it in the middle of the dining room table. I am loving the simplicity of the arrangement and I think they make a rather nice impact, especially for a winter month.

I have no idea what the vase life of these will be, but I wouldn't be surprised if they lasted a rather long time...if not, I sure know where to get more!

I love it when a pest becomes an asset.

Brenda at: the Cozy Little House featured La Vie Quotidienne on her blog this week. I am both overwhelmed and very flattered. If you get a chance stop by Here and see the post. Thank you Brenda, what a wonderful treat for me! And you are right, my garden is my sanctuary and brings me much joy and pleasure. 

Thank you for visiting, I hope your day is full of wonderful assets.

This post has been linked to: http://stringtownhome.net/

Friday, January 17, 2014

Powder room ~

My wallpaper for the powder room has come!

...and the paint: Behr, Cornerstone a slightly less saturated hue than the color I used in the adjacent media/library and a perfect match for the darker stripe in the wallpaper. I think it will make a nice transition between the two rooms.

I also have the new chandelier...

Antique Gold with Clear Beads Swag Plug-In Chandelier

... the new faucet.

Kingston Brass Restoration KB3612PL Deck Mount Lavatory Faucet w/Brass Pop-Up 4 inch Center Polished Brass 

and this beautiful antique mirror which was my Mother's; it will go in the niche above the commode.

 I have even found the glass knobs for the doors; mine will come with brass screws to match the faucet and the other fittings. I am thinking of adding some gold details to the ceiling for a bit of  elegance. The only thing left  to select is the new molding for the cabinets.
 I picked up an new paint brush yesterday along with the wallpaper paste, I always start a new project with a new paint brush.

 The new commode will be installed after all of the painting is done and the wall paper put up so...

It looks like I'm ready to go! 

 I haven't wallpapered anything for a while, wish me luck, but first of course I have to paint.

Thank you for visiting I hope that you are having a wonderful day.
This post has been linked to: http://frenchcountrycottage.blogspot.com/

Monday, January 13, 2014

Time to eat ~

What's for dinner?

During the holiday season two of my favorite people came over for dinner. Miss Twiggley decided that she need to be included and Sue, who is a wonderful photographer took this picture. She brought it to me me on Christmas Day, framed as a gift ~ it now sits on the desk in the office, where right now Miss Twiggley is sleeping, wound into a ball in my to -do basket. She seems to take being the center of attention in stride.


And, thank you again Sue 

This post has been linked to:  .http://ivyandelephants.blogspot.com/ and


Thursday, January 9, 2014

A new project for a new year ~

Behind this door in the media/library is a dismal secret and my first project for the new year...
...a very tiny powder room.
 Originally this space was a closet. The former owners of the house converted it to service the adjoining bedroom which I now use as the guest room.  There isn't much wiggle room here: the sink with a window above is on one side, the commode in a recess on the other side, and doors on the other two walls. A further complication: the crawl space to the attic is located in the ceiling.

As you can see this room is badly in need of attention, I think this wallpaper was put up almost 20 years ago. I hate the imitation plastic tile on the walls, in the past it was always painted over but this time it is going, along with the old commode, wallpaper and fixtures. I  plan on adding interest to the cabinet doors with new moldings, something I have found amazingly easy and effective to do. And definitely all new brass hinges, oh how I dislike painted-over hinges!

I took these photos before Christmas, the wallpaper is now off, the ugly tile is gone, and new wall board has been put up. Throughout the past few weeks I have been researching paint, lighting, wallpaper, and fixtures, in my next post I hope to share with you some of the choices I have made. The major challenge was to create continuity between this room, the media/library on one side and the guest bedroom on the other side, but I think I found a good way to make the transition.
what is on your agenda for the new year?

Monday, January 6, 2014

A simple solution ~

After all of the holiday decorations have been taken down everything looks so bare!
The shelf under this window in the media/library room looked particularly drab and boring, definitely it needed a little perking up. I really wanted something fresh and natural to enliven the space. So...
...although I have very few flowers in the garden this time of year, I do have lots of succulents ~ I shopped the garden and put together this arrangement of cuttings in an old soup tureen. I lined the tureen first with plastic to protect it and added potting soil.

A few books, a Corday bird figure and voila, it's complete.

And one of the best parts: this simple succulent arrangement will last through several months, the cuttings will eventually root and I can plant them back out in the garden ~ a complete win-win! 

I am so pleased with this that I think I will do another one for the dining room table. I love it when something is so easy...and free!
What do you think?

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Gâteau au chocolat ~

What better to start the new year than with chocolate!
This is the best chocolate cake, moist, dense and oh, so chocolaty. In fact it is called the "Too Much Chocolate Cake" and you can find the recipe...

 Oh, I almost forgot, it is incredibly easy to make and freezes well.
So Yummy, a perfect tonic for the post-holiday blues.

(My brother gave me this galleried silver tray for Christmas, isn't it pretty.)
Bon Appetite! And, thank you for visiting.
this post has been linked to: http://frenchcountrycottage.blogspot.com/