Friday, July 29, 2011

Honey Jar

One of my greatest loves is still anything graphic in design. I recently created this honey logo for a co-worker's hobby. He sells his local honey via his blog. I am amazed at the work and time that goes into this really cool hobby. Bruce is just getting started in the blog world (not that I have been doing it for any length of time either!) yet he has been "beeezy" in the honey making world for a while. I spoke of his beeswax candles on an older post!

Check out his blog, follow it and try some honey!

Monday, July 25, 2011

We Think Alike!

Tonight, I was surprised by my daughter. A special "tomato" season gift from the heart. Thank you so much Kate!

Dish Towels with a tomato print!!!! I absolutely LOVE them! But what I love even more is her enthusiasm for the fresh taste of home grown tomatoes. We went out to see if there were any more ripening..and found some to have been eaten by our friendly bunny? sad to see the harvest enjoyed by someone other than ourselves!

But we gathered the rest and put them inside on a windowsill. I would rather they ripen outdoors but I want to see if our McGregor's garden rabbit does any more harm.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Sunday Shell Collections

This week, thanks to a friend, I have found a new shell that I am completely enamoured with! It is the common Jingle Shell -  but a color that has been missed in my collections. It is the less obvious. It is not the orange or yellow or even the white Jingle Shell. It is the black variation...pearlescent, with earth tones of subtle grays, blacks and golds! So beautiful!

 The Jingle Shell is a great way to add color to a shelf shell collection. I once collected as many orange and yellow Jingle Shells as I could, separated them by color and bought 2 nice apothecary type jars to showcase them. A great gift for the seaside inspired homeowner!

A Little History....Jingle Shells:
So named because a handful of these thin, translucent clamshell halves make a jingling sound when shaken together, Jingle Shells (Anomia simplex) are sometimes found as far north as the coast of Nova Scotia, and all the way down south to Brazil. The bivalve (or pelecypod) halves are sometimes strung together to make wind-chime-like curtains for beach cottage windows or portières to hang in doorways.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

First Tomatoes!

The wait is over, the work is going to gradually pay off now because they are ripening! Small, but I'll take that. I will pick them tomorrow and either bite right into one or slice it over a bagel....and possibly share.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Hot Summer Daze

Staying for a few days at Fairfield Beach....and wow, is it hot. But come evening, the breeeeeeze is magnificent! The mornings are cool enough, meant for walking and enjoying the peace and quiet.

I wake at sunrise. Barefoot when I just want to meander the shore and search for shells, sneakers when I want to do some distance...but always with my camera! I have to show you the typical, everyone takes them, shots of sunrise over the water just in case you haven't had the opportunity to witness one recently. Please bear with me.

Once the sun is up but low in the sky the colors of nature just POP. 

These old pilings and seaweed covered rocks draw me back every year. The green is so vivid in this light and the structures seem almost "Stone Hedge"like. The way the water has carved the wood over so many years is very graphic, very layered and just intriguing!

Anything can present itself as a design. Wind fences are great subjects and there are plenty of opportunities at this beach. I am in love with this second shot. The patterns and composition are almost I will be back there hopefully tomorrow morning to take more shots and get it perfect.

As long as I am not too crabby sleeping in the heat!
Stay cool...

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Brimfield Bounty

This weekend, we attended a special wedding in Worcester, Massachusets. Congrats again to Kate & Tim! Luckily, it was the same weekend that the world famous Brimfield Antique and Flea Market was happening! We were only 1/2 hour away so the next day I was set on experiencing this event and had a definite mission. To find small, old, oriental throw rugs to match one we have in place already. With dark stained floors, these look awesome. The one below is our old faithful.

The rug has been in my family for years, threadbare, without fringe and just you can see! But we love it and wanted more.....

 I found so many dealers, so many rugs! Trying to keep in the same color family was important, the aged. no fringe look and the price. Hmmm, not a good bargainer. I will have to work on that. Three rugs, love them all and have found homes for them in strategic high traffic areas. Mission Accomplished.

BUT, there is more!

Remember my love of tomatoes? Well, even if you don't, I do, I did. One of the first vendors we stopped at in this inaugural visit to Brimfield was a paper, old advertising specialist. I could have spent hours browsing the inventory. I am a graphic designer by nature. Letters, logos, page design and colors have always excited me! Even the banal...someone has to design it...they may as well have fun. And so they did. I found old tomato can labels from the 1920's-1930's. 

First, my name Carroll, then the name Bessie!  My name, different spelling. Bessie was my grandmother's name! The Defender had a lovely sailboat and Boris????, well that one fit the color and size scheme so it made my purchase complete.

Hopefully, these will be matted and somehow framed before Christmas. I have a few thoughts, a project in mind. Summer Wrap Up Posting might shed light on my progress!!!!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Saint Sally

I try to keep my blog dialogue and postings related to nature, crafts, decorating and of course seaglass. I have wandered off course a few times but now I must share something completely askew. It is human nature (so is this still related to nature?) to either laugh or cry at life's misfortunes. Is it dog nature to act out when bored, lonely, scared and hungry? I believe we have the evidence here that YES, it is dog nature to do just that.

This is sweet, loving, adorable Sally that came to live with us on Easter weekend. (see old posts). She has been a saint sent to us for many reasons. She has also been a handful, a little "sassy" as we call it at times. We love her as she loves us.

But today, she was not saint-like at all! She had been gnawing a bit at the baseboard but I figured I would replace it when she left puppyhood behind her. I know Mike, our best contractor must have some of the same baseboard, somewhere????? Please? 

NOW? WOW. Sally, Miss Sheetrock has given her nickname "sassy" a new meaning. We know she was left a little too long, met a neighbor who let her out to do her business that may have freaked her out, ( Megan we love you !!! and thank you !! ) and Sally was too long waiting for lunch. Dog Nature 101.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

My Best Friend

Well, speaking in terms of insects at least, my friends are here. I truly hope these wonderful Praying Mantis (plural??) devour as many mosquitoes as possible. This is a small one....climbing on my front door. They are so special to watch and learn about. Only the strong survive! I find a few every season and watch them grow. Have you seen any in your yard yet?

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Hydrangea Hot Weather

The word hydrangea means water loving...and they sure do. I have been watering quite a bit. In season and flourishing in my yard I decided to skip the seaglass/shells (but I still collected some!) and think a bit about these awesome shrubs.

Photos taken over the course of a few weeks show the progression...and I waited anxiously for their color to bring life to my yard.

I believe I have about 5-6 different hydrangea in my yard. Two, Pink Diamond and another Peegee (Paniculata) are late bloomers. Endless Summer, Nikko Blue and other hydrangeas that I never got the official names for are vibrant right now! The Lace Cap is a neighbor's but I hope to plant one someday as well.

The best thing about hydrangeas is the continuous option for indoor bouquets! 

Some of these hydrangeas are even more beautiful in the fall as they turn from blue to green and dark purple. I will definitely add some photos in a summer wrap up posting!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011


The traditional egg toss on Fairfield beach for the Fourth of July Weekend get together carries on! Other families have had their own but I think this year, we may have been the ONLY ONE! These are our champions...Kelsey, Jamie with intact egg and presenting the trophy is none other than Anne B. 
(Trophy is in her name of course!)

To see other shots of the day please see the sidebar link.....Family Fourth.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

I Thank My Lucky Stars

This weekend, being the Fourth of July Weekend, images of red-white & blue were on my mind. Stars and Stripes and Celebrations too. I opened my pantry to find an idea staring me in the face.

Once in a very long while, Trader Joe's (my humble place of employment) brings in just too much of one product during the holidays. These cookie workshops were marked down to 1 penny! I bought two and tucked them away. Voila! An instant idea, a sudden impulse.  Instead of Christmas cookies....we decided to make Fourth of July cookies!

 The recipe called for butter and eggs. I ran out to the corner store and paid their always inflated price for anything and everything because they can....$5.50 for 4 sticks of butter? I think that may be a bit much.

Now mind you, the mixer we used to cream the butter & sugar was none other than my GE trusty mixer given to me at a wedding shower approximately 32 years ago! Move over you big fancy KitchenAid owners!

Admittedly, my daughter that joined me in this Fourth of July adventure and I aren't the bakers in the family. That daughter was working (I won't identify which one is which though). We persevered (and asked ourselves why are doing this?) kneaded the dough, got out the big cutting board, flour and made a huge mess in the meantime!

The star shaped cookie cutter was used and the snowman and the Christmas tree were saved for another time.

Frosting versus plain sugar sprinkles? All we know is that simple is usually better.  We also know we won't have the impulse to bake again soon.  In the end, I thank my lucky stars to have such wonderful daughters that humor me when I decide to "create" outside of my comfort zone.

Happy Fourth of July Weekend to all!