Posts Tagged ‘garden’

Nothing pleases more than harvesting our bounty from the garden.Tomatoes, zucchini, cukes, lettuces, carrots and beets. Well almost everything except…

Green beans.

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

Maybe despise it.


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,


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


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 (well hate may be kinda stong) green beans. Not the pale soggy ones that come in a can, but fresh ones that squeek on your teeth. Certainly 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 realize that this is “cool” now. Just walk through your local farmers market and check out those prices!!


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.

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the white garden


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.






spring white

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


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


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,



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heart and home


Change always seem to bring a mixture of emotions.

The bigger the change, the deeper the emotion.

As I mentioned in my last post, we are in the middle of selling our home.

Selling a  house is easy, selling your home is a whole different kettle of fish!!





Moving is bittersweet.

 When you actually build your own home, it is built with blood, sweat, and tears.

Tears of joy….

all of my children are now married, and my family has grown.

Tears of sorrow….

we have lost loved ones

and a beloved dog.


A lot of sweat!!

Creating a home and gardens out of what was once a bare field, is a lot of work!! I am so thankful that I have a husband who is able to (in his own words) take a pile of lumber and turn it into a house!

We have gone from ‘sticks with leaves’…..to actual trees!!

Grown an abundance of vegetables to eat, preserve and share.

it's complicated

potager kitchen garden


And flowers…


peonies and lilacs

bucket of peonies

pink peonies


lime and pink

So what makes a house a home, and then back to a house?


Body, soul and spirit summed up in one word.

So while I pack and reflect on the memories captured while residing here….

remember this….

it’s just a house!



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A lot has changed since my last post.

Now several things have been running through my mind during the long winter months. Do I open a brick and mortar? Do I include container gardening services? Start an online store? It is amazing how one phone call can change everything!

A realtor friend of mine called and asked “Do you want to sell your house? I have a buyer.”  Whoa!! What? After a brief (and I mean brief) conversation with my hubby I found the word “yes” coming out of my mouth! I had mentioned possibly selling and rebuilding  here

After crunching the numbers, designing and  building 3 different houses in my mind, my first thought was …

What about my potting shed?

(This is the only really decent shot I have of my shed….why didn’t I take more pictures????)


Any one who gardens, entertains outdoors or just likes outbuildings either longs for, or already has, a potting shed!



I have been working on my shed for several years now, and have been using it for extra storage for French Grey.

white shed

I have added a picket fence…


Climbing roses that have finally reached the top of my arbor ( which is no small feat in Western Mt  zone 4)…


And getting ready to put in an herb garden, potager style…

small shed

And I still have big plans…. BIG plans!!


Hubby installed a french door out the back…

I had dreams of a pergola with pea gravel for entertaining…


Maybe a green house attached…


As you can tell, even if you do have a potting shed, there are always more uses and ideas for more!!

I feel like the little girl on the At&t ad… I just want more…  hee hee :)

two story



two sheds

So My plans have been dashed. However, I now have an opportunity?? to start new plans!

But, a potting shed will not be the first priority…

First will be the….KITCHEN!!

So… stay tuned :)



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Hello friends!

Summer just seems to be flying by and I feel like it has just finally gotten started! I enjoyed cool ocean breezes and came home to upper 90’s and forest fires….. ugh! Wouldn’t it be nice to live somewhere that has balance in the weather?!

Speaking of balance…. (how’d you like that lead in, hee hee)

Symmetry adds balance to design in all areas, especially the garden. While I enjoy a good cottage garden with it’s riot of movement and color, I think symmetry is needed in the “bones” of good garden design.

                             luxury landscapes

                                 traditional home

It can frame a focal point that otherwise would get lost, and helps draw the eye to what lies beyond.

We built our builder grade home in the middle of a pasture that had been subdivided into 1-1/2 acre parcels. Placed on an angle on the lot has caused me some design dilemmas. By adding fences and gates I’ve been able to create garden rooms, thus giving some sense of symmentry.

Now, if only I could find a hardy boxwood to create a garden like these!!


Symmerty can be created with well placed urns, trees, shrubs or chairs. Notice how the furniture is equally placed, and the pool is the focal point or the dividing line.

I certainly could remain “balanced” lounging around this pool!

                                  via pinterest

Okay, okay…..

My spell check is demanding that I correct my spelling of “symmetry” and after reading the dictionary I love the definition…..


Similarity of form or arrangement on either side of a dividing line or plane; correspondence of opposite parts in size, shape, and position…

…excellence or beauty of form or proportion as a result of such correspondence

…with the reference to the interrelation of parts to form an aesthetically pleasing whole

…proportion implies a gracefulness, harmony implies an agreement, and balance to produce an aesthetic equilibrium in the whole

The perfect example is an entrance….

                                    ralph lauren

                                              via pinterest




via pinterest

Symmetry in interior spaces is especially pleasing to the eye! You can start with a pair of windows, a fireplace or any other focal point and build around it.

FOUND.by domestic bliss


 Chairs, pillows, mirrors and lamps, when placed in pairs, will add that touch of balance, harmony and proportion to your home. Where have you added this design element to your home?

Lastly, I leave you with an image from Atelier de Champagne. They create some of the best vignettes using symmetry.

atelier de champagne

Have a great weekend!

I am going to pick up two topiaries at my local nursery sale, and any thing else I can find in pairs!



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Spring has been absolutely beautiful here and I am finally enjoying being outside working in the yard. No wind. No freaky snowstorm. Just wonderful sunshine! As I spend more time outdoors I like to think about bringing the indoors~out. These are some beautiful outdoor spaces to inspire.


This outdoor room has it all!

Would I ever get anything done once I sat down here with a cup of coffee?!

Not only does it have outdoor seating, but I love the drapes, stunning fireplace and of course boxwood topiaries! Steel windows add an industrial touch, and lighting is a must.


This gorgeous outdoor fireplace is truly the focal point of this outdoor seating area.

Love the grey tones in the rock and furniture.



Neutral color scheme with a French style daybed would be great outdoors or in!


A rustic arbor adds charm to this simple outdoor dining space.


This is vintage French Grey at it’s best!

Adding a vintage piece, whether it’s a statue, birdbath or a piece of furniture  brings an architectural element to the garden.


This is a perfect way to furnish a transitional space between house and garden. Love the stone floors, linen ottomans, industrial table and lovely lantern! Can you ever have too many urns?!




This Chandelier is spectacular!

Love the wooden beams, stonework, arched windows to bring in the garden view and grouped seating areas for easy entertaining.


Even if you only have a simple shed you can create a cozy outdoor room. A couple of chairs, lanterns and a mirror to reflect light and the gorgeous scenery and you have a place of repose. Of course, I probably couldn’t sit here for long without seeing something that needed to be deadheaded or a weed to pull!


Hope ya’ll have a great weekend while you think about creating, daydreaming or enjoying your special space outdoors!

Shall I have coffee, lemonade or a glass of wine….

Blessings to you all,


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Hello Everyone!!

It’s been a while!

I was feeling a little guilty for taking off on a road trip when I should have been working here…

These were taken a few years ago and I am glad to report my neighbors have removed all the cars…..and the trees and shrubs have matured as planned…… to provide privacy.

Anyways, instead of staying home and working, I figured I would jump at the offer, and ride to Texas with my good friend. I’m always up for a good gallivant.




Yes, this has been  a constant word in my vocabulary. I may have passed on the gallivant gene to my children. Nature vs nurture, the debate goes on.

We stayed just outside Jackson Hole, WY and had my morning coffee here…

Now, as ya’ll know, that teeny tiny coffee maker in the hotel room is only enough to wake you up for the REAL coffee, right?

Ya’ll and ma’am.

I think I’m officially adopting these phrases. Ya’ll because it’s friendly and casual, and ma’am because it is just plain polite! We can learn a few things from our fellow Texans, and these two are on the top of my list.

I love this Italian restaurant and winery. It’s in a beautiful vineyard in the Hill Country of Texas.

The courtyard garden is gorgeous, especially the fountain!

Rose topiaries…

It has a real European feel, with great garden design combining both formal and casual elements.

More potted topiaries ….

And some lantern love…

Now, I had hoped to blog while traveling, but neigh, it did not work out that way! I will leave you hanging about the high point of my trip…..

The Country Living Fair in Austin, TX!!

Hope you have a great weekend!



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