Sunday, December 30, 2018

Looking Back

Many people on Instagram are doing their Top Nine - the 9 posts that generated the most likes in 2018.

Although the collage of my top 9 is pretty, it doesn't reflect the year we had or life in our little cottage - a friend's shed is #5 and #9 is a garden we passed on a walk.

I decided to look back at my year and choose 1 photo for each month to reflect on 2018.

I chose my 2018 word of the year to represent January because I used the word frequently to explain my madness to Steve in constantly moving furniture around the house.

I chose to use a pic of our bedroom for February because I rarely show it, but also because the table holding the sailboat is part of my "intentional" furniture movement.

This photo in front of our garage door reflects my swing back to blue in 2018, my love of flowers and cycling, although this bicycle is never ridden.

My April pic has me yearning for garden time -we are actually experiencing a cold winter (by Southern California standards) and my garden misses me.

For May I chose a pic of Country Sampler magazine on the table - here is the article about our cottage in the summer 2018 issue.

In June I was so happy to see flowers blooming beneath the windows in Steve's studio - backyard neighbors 2 houses over cut down a 30' tall hedge and now the sun shines throughout our garden. 

In July I did A Fun Collaboration with - I created iron-on transfers for tote bags to give family members traveling the 26 Miles to Catalina Island for a birthday celebration.

Our house was a chaotic mess in August with our bathroom remodel and despite living elsewhere for 3 weeks, I kept this area neat and tidy while we spent time at home each day.

Painting the fireplace white was on my list for years and I finally just did it.

A major remodel of our only bathroom was totally unexpected, but when Steve gets an idea in his head, he can't let it go - he decided to do it in July, we began in August and everything was finished in early October.

In November I began setting the stage for Christmas decor by organizing our entry cupboard with all white dishes.

Here is that table from the February pic of the bedroom - part of my "intentional" movement of furniture.

Although most of the pics on my Instagram were on my blog, I decided to scroll through the blog to find one favorite for each month - after January and February pics of flowers, I decided to continue the theme.

I really love this pic of the garden

and this one of our beach.

 But, my favorite blog pic looking back at 2018 has to be this shot of Andy, Kendra and Steve at the harbor.

Lulu didn't want to be forgotten.

Friday, December 14, 2018

A Christmas Carol

Welcome to A Merry Musical Christmas Blog Hop

 hosted by Amber of Follow the Yellow Brick Home.

If you're following along in order, then you're coming to me from the home of my dear friend Jann of Have a Daily Cup of Mrs. Olson - she has the cutest style.

I must begin by telling you that I am not musically inclined - I joined the after school band in the 5th grade, chose the clarinet, and was quickly told by the music teacher that it was in everyone's best interests that I quit the program.

But, my name is a noun associated with Christmas and that name was chosen because I was expected in December - I came 4 weeks early. 

Maybe that's why Christmas carols have always been favorites.

Despite a lack of musical skill, as I looked around the house,

I noticed that there are carol lyrics

in every nook and cranny.

The halls are decked

and each vignette makes a carol pop into my head.

I will admit that this reindeer did not have a red nose, but I think my embellishment adds to his charm.

Jingle bells make for a fun garland in the guest room.

Santa Claus is coming to town,

but my Frosty has a carrot instead of a button nose.

Even though these aren't silver bells, in the air there's a feeling of Christmas.

I got to thinking about my favorite carols

and used snippets of lyrics to decorate one of my little trees.

There is JOY in our home

because it truly is the most wonderful time of the year.

 I hope you have yourself a Holly Jolly Christmas.

And now I'll send you off to Belle Bleu Interiors - you will love Shannon's beautiful home.

Thank you for hopping along with this wonderful group of bloggers.

Thursday, December 6, 2018

A Cottage Made for Christmas

I'm honored to be joining a talented group of ladies to showcase our homes at Christmas time.

You will find the list and links to all the homes at the end of this post.

Welcome to our humble little cottage.

I love decorating our home any time of year, but our white house and red door make our cottage feel like it was made for Christmas.

My grandparents' step back cupboard dominates the entry

and it's one of my favorite spots in the house to decorate.

The chippy red chair, a recent find, is perfect for a Christmas house.

My numerous Maileg pixies are an homage to my Scandinavian roots  - read here about the history of the pixies or as they are called in Norway, Nisse.

This year I went with all white dishes on the plates racks,

but there are of course pops of red.

As you can see, the red dishes ended up in the kitchen.

I moved things around the house this Christmas - like the grocery cart holding a little faux tree I bought in 2003.

No ornaments for the tree this year, just a felt and wire garland that is over 30 years old and strips of paper with carol lyrics for an upcoming Merry Musical Christmas blog hop.

New stockings I made from drop cloth hang on a cabinet.

My favorite treasures on the cabinet are my aunt's 1927 edition of A Christmas Carol and my mother's 1926 edition of Little Women.

Our faux pencil tree (perfect for our tiny cottage) got a totally different look this year.

In years past I have displayed my fragile ornaments in bowls and baskets,

but this year they are all on the tree along with my treasured wire stars.

 I don't usually do green, but I love the way it pops off the fireplace I painted white last summer.

When not in use, our television hides behind a sign - I painted over an Emerson quote for Christmas.

 I limited decor in our bedroom to a little tree for Steve's sake, he gets a bit overwhelmed by my Christmas enthusiasm - I did not even think about putting any Christmas decorations in his studio.

One of the swaps I made was to remove a cabinet from the hallway and exchange it for a simple drop leaf table that Steve found in my parents' garage over 40 years ago.

Without the tall cabinet, I love this view down the hallway to the guest room, but I have a whole new appreciation for those of you who live in gloomy rainy places because I struggled to get a decent picture on a rare rainy Southern California day.

The guest room is one place where I go all out for Christmas.

The blue cabinet is new this year and a perfect spot for Christmas decor.

I moved my vintage hospital cart from the living room and gave the old door a fresh coat of paint.

More pixies - yes, I probably have too many

but Olaf, my first pixie, needs friends.

Thanks for stopping by our little cottage.

And now, it's time to visit the other houses on the tour -you are in for some fabulous inspiration.