Saturday, June 30, 2012

Prairie Garden...

As the rhythm of the Seasons changes, so does my garden... my soft sweet Roses and delicate Dames Rocket, Delphiniums and Foxgloves of Spring and early Summer have given way to my heat and sun~loving Prairie Flowers... I absolutely love my Prairie garden... and so do my many visitors to it... like Madame Butterfly in my photo below... enjoying a sip from one of my Purple Coneflowers... (Echinacea)...

My Prairie garden is a buzz, literally, every morning with the soft humming of the bees visiting... a welcoming stopping place for Hummingbirds, butterflies, bees and my precious Hummingbird moths... the rhythm of the changing of the Seasons from early Summer to what I have always known as the "dog days of Summer"... here in Utah now, our temps climb almost daily to the 100 degree plus mark or close to it...

Bee~balm and Purple Coneflowers make a pretty sight...

They make me smile...


Black~eyed Susans (Rudbeckia "Goldilocks") are one of my very favorites...

Bee~balm spreads rapidly, which I love... but you do need to plant it where it has plenty of room to grow...

My Yarrow (Achillea millefolium) loves these hot Summer days... I dry bunches of it, tying it in bunches with twine, then hanging it upside down in our garage to dry... they make beautiful dried flower arrangements and wreaths and hold their color well...

Jack's favorites are the Blanket Flowers...

Cosmos just now starting to take off as well...

Soon these beauties will fill an entire portion of my Prairie garden... they re~seed easily and come back year after year...

I hope you enjoyed a little peek at my Prairie garden... these lovelies will bloom from now till frost... which I don't even want to think about that!... wishing you a glorious Summers day, xoxo...



Wednesday, June 27, 2012

My All~American Girl...

Tessy is dreaming...

Of baseball, hot dogs, apple pie... and Fourth of July...

She is proud to be an American!... and she is wishing you all a Happy upcoming Fourth of July!... xoxo...



Sunday, June 24, 2012

To Market, to Market...

I love my darling "Market Bag" my friends Jen and El just got in at their beautiful boutique here in Centerville, Madeleine L'Amour... they are all one of a kind, handmade by "Annie Mae", the cutest little local gal... and oh~so~shabby!... the softest, loveliest faded florals and stripes coordinated inside and out... a big roomy pocket on the front...

Another one on the cute back...

Fabric flowers adorn the front and look how cute the tied handles are!...

Inside there are three more roomy pockets for all your goodies... these are nice, generous size bags... perfect for taking along to the Farmers Market, flea markets, grocery store, the beach... what~have~you... shhh!... don't tell Jack... I bought TWO!... one to use for Farmers Market and one to use every day as a Summer purse...

Also available are these cutest ever little bags with a zip top... perfect for holding the little necessities you need to take to the market with you... cash, cellphone, lipstick... keys... etc...

If you love vintage looking and shabby, this is the bag for you!... please tell Jen and El that Julie Marie sent you... they offer shipping throughout the US... they do not have an online shop, but anything on their shop blog is available for purchase... but remember... these beauties are one of a kind!... xoxo...



Saturday, June 23, 2012

Berry Sweet Surprises From My Sister...

Three or four posts ago, I showed you some of my strawberry collectibles... it's berry time here now, and I can't get enough of them... last weekend, on Father's Day, I was feeling kinda yucky... then it happened... three years in a row... I had another kidney stone... I was not even going to post and tell anyone that I had it, but I decided to anyway... I have not been feeling much like blogging or anything since then, and some of you have emailed me and asked why... the last two summers, almost a year to the date in August, I have had to have surgery for them... I was praying this year would be different... so far so good... even though I had a stone on Father's Day, EXACTLY one year from the first of three last summer, I did not have to have surgery this time... and for that I am sooo very grateful... please know I am not asking for sympathy or anything, just explaining why I have not been myself alot lately... anyhow... my sister Jill... my best friend... left a sweet surprise on my doorstep for me... this adorable little strawberry jar with a precious little bee who has landed on top...

Strawberry jam cookies and chocolate truffles... plus, chocolate~raspberry squares fill the little jar... also a cute card with love from my sissie...

Thank you so much Jill!... for my "berry sweet" surprises!... xoxo...



Welcoming Summer...



With sweet Butterfly kisses in my garden... xoxo...



Monday, June 18, 2012

Hollyhock Days...

When the sky is the softest of blue and only the teeniest little wisp of a cloud dares to show his face...

And the cool morning breeze calls out to you... gently whispering to you... teasing you... to come outside... and don't let a single moment of this blissful day slip away from you...

For this is a most perfect day to daydream... or to do whatever your heart desires...

When the sun on your face feels so good... for these are not yet the scorching days of late Summer... these Hollyhock Days of mine are just perfect in every way... a leisurely walk seems in order...

For there are no plans today... Hollyhock Days are best spent living in the moment... taking in all of Summer's beauty... noticing every tiny detail of the day... and for counting your many blessings...

As I walk down the lane, I remember making Hollyhock dolls as a child... with Hollyhocks from great~grandmother's garden in Santa Fe where I spent cherished time each Summer... they flourished, standing tall and stately all along the old dirt driveway back to the garage...


Did you make Hollyhock dolls too?...

To me they are the most beautiful of the old~fashioned flowers...

They make me smile... do they you?...


How do you enjoy these blissful days I have named Hollyhock Days?... I would love to hear... xoxo...



Tuesday, June 12, 2012

A "Berry" Sweet Time of Year...

I grew up on a quiet little country road in Bountiful, Utah, five minutes away from where I live today... a little rural town known for it's fine fruits and berries, lush orchards and vineyards... thus, the name "Bountiful"... we were surrounded by the most wonderful orchards... Farmer Stringham owned the orchards and sold some of his land in the midst of them where our home and our neighbors homes were built... it was here that my happy childhood memories I post often about took place... we had Tartarian cherry trees on our own property and mama made the best cherry pies in the world!... most of us kids worked in the Summer for Farmer Stringham... picking cherries, apricots, strawberries... whatever odd job he would give us... at 50 cents a day, we thought we were rich!... he never cared if we played in his orchards... or even if we picked some fruit or berries, as long as we ate them and didn't waste them... we happily obliged, letting the sweet juices run all down our faces, savoring every last bite of a luscious apricot or sweet strawberry... that was the beginning of my love affair with these delights of Summer... in addition to loving eating them, I also love to collect anything that is berries or fruits... some are vintage... some are new... my kitchen is red and yellow... and they just make me happy!... one of Jack's friend's wives sent home this beautiful green vintage platter from the 40's (my favorite era!) for me several years ago... she is the same lady who gave me 9 Bauer bowls I posted about here!... they were all on their way to be donated to a thrift shop... yikes!... when she found out I collected them she graciously sent them with her husband for me... let me clarify that, tee hee hee... she was NOT getting rid of her husband, just the bowls!...

My sister Jill brought me the darling little ant in a strawberry airplane called "Berry Air" from Bear Lake several years back... she saw it and knew I would love it... she was right!... it reminds me of the darling anthropomorphic treasures I collect from the 40's and 50's...

I have been wanting a strawberry colander and today I found this darling one at Pier One...

Along with the matching berry measuring spoons...

and matching berry measuring cups...


Our local Farmers Market starts next week, and my sister Jill and I have already made plans to go... we can hardly wait for those first Spring greens and whatever else our local farmers bring to market... I love supporting local farms... and to me there is nothing better than FRESH!...

After all of this today, I got a real craving for strawberry shortcake... so... Voila!...

Nothing fancy... if you follow my posts at all you know I am no fancy Nancy... just plain and simple goodness... Berry Sweet!... xoxo...



Remember Summer?... It's Still Out There!...

Every time Jack and I walk past this wonderful old swing at a hundred year plus old house nearby, I am taken back to my childhood Summers... I spent countless hours in our swing... "push me higher daddy!... higher!"... I would call out as I giggled... and he always did... so high, I thought I could touch the clouds in the sky... sometimes I would just sit in our swing and slowly swing back and forth... contemplating what adventures awaited me on this fine Summers day...

There were bicycle rides to take and walks to downtown Bountiful... eager to get to the store that sold the penny candy as I had a quarter in my pocket I had saved up to spend... my best friend was always with me... my sister Jill... she is still my best friend and we still love Summer (and penny candy!)... we had Kool~aid stands and dreams of making beaucoup bucks... needless to say, we usually drank most of it ourselves when we got hot... and our dog Pepe always got a cup or two... we tried our hand at selling nightcrawlers, even though we lived on a quiet little street surrounded by orchards... nowhere near a stream or fishing hole... and sooner than I thought Jill questioned why SHE had to pull the worms instead of me... I told her as the older sister I had the right of first refusal... even at six years of age, she was one smart cookie and didn't buy that... I was ten... and I didn't want to pull the worms... so we turned our talents to other things... necklaces out of sweet clover blossoms and sachets out of mama's rose petals as they fell... making snowcones on Jill's little snowcone machine... playing hopscotch in our driveway as we drew it out in chalk... I still even have my hoppy taw!... (ten to one kids these days don't even know WHAT a hoppy taw is!)... times were so innocent back then... all of our games were made up... most times by me... besides playing baseball in the field across the street... or hide and seek... and red rover... coming inside only at suppertime then back out to savor the warm Summer evenings as we counted the fireflies... one by one, the kids would all get called home... until finally mama would call us in as well... "oh please, just FIVE more minutes" we would beg... there were no cell phones, no computers... no ipods... kids didn't sit in front of a tv all day... we were outside... breathing fresh air and enjoying the warmth of the sun... just plain and simple days... filled with the joys of doing whatever my vivid imagination could come up with... the pleasures of Summer... they are still out there... waiting for me... and for you... so go put your Keds on, mix up some Kool~aid... grab a quarter and seek out some penny candy...go take a bite out of Summer... it's still out there!... xoxo...