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summer’s bounty

Green beans.

Of all the summer garden chores I think I like picking green beans the least.

Maybe despise it.

IMG_1977

Somehow the rows seem so far apart when planting, yet they manage to grow into one large green blob. I know, I know. We have been organic gardening for over 30 years but still manage to forget.

Gardening is after all an art of trial and error.

Let me fill you in on the task of picking beans. First and foremost it must be stated that they are masters of camouflage. When your are bent over with all the blood rushing to your head, the stalks and beans look the same. You have to literally manhandle the plant to search for the fruit, and you always miss some,

always.

Those said for “hiders” turn into behemoths in about a day!

Really!!

green beans

So now you are trying to pick the good, bad and gigantic, along with a little plant matter to boot.

Did I mention that the ant pile I stepped on wasn’t too happy that I was picking beans either.

Now, when the kids were still living at home I naturally passed this task off to them, and of course we still had to process “them” too.

On a recent visit from my daughter I offered up produce from the garden (on a u-pick condition of course) and she steered clear of the green beans!! We had a great laugh about it and how we used to use freezer bags and suck the air out with a straw! Not exactly the best method, but it got the job done, giving us a winters worth of beans.

Did I mention that my kids now hate green beans. Not the pale soggy ones that come in a can, but fresh ones that squeek on your teeth. Really. Although these by Ina Garten look pretty good!

barefoot contessa

Fresh eggs… no thank you. Too many years cleaning poop off eggs, they want “store eggs”.

I hope they read this and realize that this is “cool” now. Just walk through your local farmers market and check out those prices!!

Ok.

Garden rant over.

I have checked out the prices of green beans at the market, and they are worth it.
After all, money doesn’t just grow on trees……or plants.
But if it did, you would still have to pick it!!

Count your blessings.
Cindy xo
Oh, and by the way, I bought a food sealer. No more straws.

Hello friends!

It has been one year since we sold our home and started building our new one.

Now, I would love to say that everything is finished and we are living in domestic bliss, however, such is not the case.

After taking about 7 months off (hubby had another project to complete), we have begun work again!

In the meanwhile, we’ve been staring at everything that needs to be done, and we, meaning me, each have our own ideas of what should be first, so we had to prioritize !

One of the projects I am eager to start is actually going backwards !! I have always loved the look of open shelves in the kitchen, but totally capitulated going with upper cabinetry, with the ever present re-sale mantra going on in my own head. So needless to say I have been obsessing dreaming of open shelves.

 subway tile

I am also wanting to put subway tile in as a back splash, and the two just seem to go hand in hand!

Sometimes I am a little late to the party, but this is something that can easily be done after the fact.

subway+wood

I have one upper cabinet that is situated between the window and glass door, that can be moved to the laundry room creating the perfect place to add this element.

tile dark grout

One of benefits of taking our time is that I have plenty of time to decide, not counting budget constraints, on what to pick for some of the finishing touches.

tile pantry

simple one shelf

 Of course it also means that I can keep changing I mind every time I see something I like!! In fact I have picked three different light fixtures for the island and can’t seem to pull the trigger on any of them!

tile+rustic

And the great debate between rustic reclaimed wood for the shelves….

small shelves+lighting

Or something in a metal wrought iron fashion…

steel shelving

steel+wood shelf

subway tile wood counter

Both equally beautiful when paired with the smooth white tile…

subway tile dark wood

Even this small nook looks great with the simple addition of a shelf.

small space shelf

rustic wood shelf

reclaimed wood shelf

 In Darryl Carter’s kitchen rustic shelves are tucked into nooks…

darryl carter

And this stunning beauty elevated and placed center stage…

darryl carter shelves

 Lauren Liess placed a free standing unit on top of the counter on each side of the range…

lauren liess

Maybe a combination of the two, kind of a Restoration Hardware industrial look…

rustic shelves

We’ll see… not exactly top on the list, but like Scarlet O’Hara says….

I’ll worry about that tomorrow!!

Hope all is well in your neck of the woods…

Blessings,

Cindy

xo

moroccan rugs

 

You know when you buy a new car and suddenly you see the same car everywhere?

 Well, that’s what has happened to me, only it’s a rug!

I know I’ve noticed them before, but suddenly I am nuts about it.

And I must have one. It will be perfect on our polished concrete floors in the family room.

styled

I really like how they are used in a variety of designs styles….

they are classic, yet fresh, with a nod to modern

I really love this living space and how it anchors the leather and linen with the rustic coffee table

gorge rug

And of course I stated seeing them everywhere!!

rug + rustic table

rug+pouf+coffee table

floating shelve

scandi + rug

rug1

As I cruised around online I found several, and as I went to order they were out of stock!! You know that just makes me want it more…

:)

flourish design

rug

moroccan rug

We are still waiting to get some more heavy machinery in to finish the grade around the house, after our record snowfall and subsequent flooding, we have some drainage issues.

Needless to say, it has this gardener very frustrated!!

I want to dig…

I want to plant…

So for now, I will buy a rug :)

Blessings,

Cindy

hello again

Hello friends!

It’s been awhile so I thought we should catch up!

Grab a cup of joe, and lets get started….

cup a joe

Progress on the house has been at a snails pace due weather and exhaustion. Building your own home is the ultimate DIY project, and once we lost “our” ( and by our I mean his) momentum after the holidays, it’s been hard to get back at it! Of course it’s hard to wrangle tools and such is sub-zero temps and a record snowfall. It is also quite convenient that there is always a very good reason why the tools need to stay at the other job sight….. hmmmm

Anyways, while I’ve been away I made an impromptu road trip to Texas with a dear friend. Actually we missed our flight in the middle of airline chaos, and decided

“hey let’s just throw our bags in the car and drive!”

“oh wait, it’s kinda starting to snow”

and we just had the “are you going to pack a coat?” conversation resulting in “No”.

So a quick swing through the TJ Maxx clearance section yielded a coat, blanket and ear warmers. So we were ready drive out into the desolate landscape!!

Long story short, the trip went fast but well, and I brought home two granite counter tops with sinks for the bathrooms! Cheap! One is installed (pictures from phone…ugh) and I will do a more detailed post at a later date.

photo (1)

 The other is sitting in place waiting for faucets, tile, mirrors and lighting.

I have been spending time on pinterest and crushing on natural, rustic wood elements…

bench

rustic bench

rustic wood mirror

kit table

rustic island

Especially love designer Wendy Owen’s home

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

wendy owen table

wo pav

I have been adding to my French bread board collection…

Especially after seeing these at Patina Farm!

pt bread board

I found one of these …

bread rustic

Even though the house isn’t complete, I have been slowly unpacking….

Ironstone

ironstone

IMG_1589

Digging out some beautiful French urns I found at Farm Chicks last summer!

Like these…

561193_434156226596877_228766750469160_1738783_1380566984_n

And bringing some greenery in to fight the winter blues…

urn + succulents

zinc + boxwood

And a little color..

bouque

paris flower shop

So these are just a few things I’ve been up to lately.

Since most areas just need trim, I have always felt that you should  have something beautiful for your eyes to rest on.

Therefore, I am ignoring the “unfinished” parts and focusing on what is done.

However,

It would be nice to have at least one room completely done…

pretty please?

Blessings to you all, and thanks for hangin’ in there with me!

Cindy

the pie safe

Hello Friends!!

As we progress on the building of our home, we have had a few set backs.

Mainly, hubby had to return to an actual paying job,  which has slowed down work here considerably! With winter baring down on us (temps reaching into the teens) and one week before the first snowfall, we moved out of the camper and into….

the almost finished daylight basement!

Now, anyone who has built or remodeled in the past knows,

you never

never

ever

move. in. before. it’s. done.

Which brings me to my pie safe.

IMG_1692 picnik2

It’s pictured here in our previous home.

I purchased this piece over 20 years ago for a specific purpose.

To hold my dishes in a temporary kitchen. My husband balked at the $300 price, while I justified it. Instead of spending on something we would rip out never to use again, this piece has traveled with me and served me for many years!

Vintage pieces in the kitchen add a sense of history and patina that a new home lacks.

OK…

And I just like them :)

vintage by nina ~ kitchen storage

pie safe

Needless to say, the downstairs does not have a kitchen.

And we are still working on the kitchen….

So the “T” word was thrown around..

You know….

Temporary!

galvanized cart~cotedetexas

So my ‘ol trusty friend, the pie safe, has come full circle.

After being a homeschool center for planners, teachers manuals and books…

A design center for books, magazines and catalogs…

kitchen cart

white kitchen cupboard

wire doors

Back to holding the few dishes that were being housed in the camper.

white cart cupboard

I also placed linen behind the screen doors…

because like everybody else

I hate to dust too!!

curtain on doors

Although I am looking forward to my new kitchen and all my “stuff”..

pie safe lower

white with plate rack

Simply paring down to a few essentials really lets you know how much you can do without,

and I am extremely blessed.

I feel a serious purge is going to take place before I move anything  into the house.

Dear Pie Safe,

Thank you for being so practical and beautiful too!

You have served me well, and you continue to keep my life in order.

Yours truly,

Cindy

all images via pinterest

Hello Friends!

I have been a little negligent in the blogging department lately, my apologies!

We have been working away on the construction of our new home, and how some people can manage to blog and build, is beyond me!

We are also in a geographical oddity when it comes to internet and tv, so needless to say I have been “unplugged” for the most of the summer. Thank goodness for good friends and secure Wi Fi!

New construction is a funny thing, unless you have deep pockets, you kinda get stuck doing the standard thing. Maybe a tweak here and there, but basically new everything.

I am, however, holding out for a unique sink to put in the guest bath.

french grey sink

I have been on the hunt for something great!

rustic built in

Ok, different than the standard vanity..

meg ryan bath

simple vessel

iron scroll

rustic sink

concrete and vessel

washstand

furniture sink

stone sink

long vessel sink

shell shape

It is also a great opportunity to add a vintage storage piece…

painted

cabinet

ladder

rustic shelf

hutch

 

I have been taking pictures of the house as we go, but who wants to see a bunch of befores without any great afters?

So….

Soon

Very soon!

Blessings,

Cindy

the white garden

Hello!!

With all the craziness going on around me, I find myself jumping to the end of the enormous amount of work that lies ahead of me, to planning and planting a garden!  And one of those gardens will certainly be white!

white garden and greenhouse

In fact, I have begun naming the areas of yard….the white garden, the potager and the lawn.

The vegetable garden (his) and the orchard.

I know, it’s a sickness.

Anything to ignore the painfully ugly truth that I am surrounded by dirt!

cottage style

Fortunately I do have a green “island” of grass that is right out my (camper) door steps!

And shade.

Beautiful,

lovely,

glorious

shade!!

english

spring white

But, as of today, I have the framing of a house!

veronica

And I was very well behaved at the nursery! I could have brought home several of these lovelies….

annabelle

But alas, I know better!

I would then want to plant them, which would make me want to buy more…

and I would be dragging every clearance white flower or shrub home!

Of course I would grow tired of watering black pots 2 and 3 times a day until I could plant …..

Then, lo and behold,

the heavy machinery will come back and dig a trench right through my work!!

Who said patience is a virtue….

I am running out of virtue!

So for now,

I will water my little green island and feed the birds!

Hope you are enjoying your summer,

Blessings,

Cindy

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