Thursday, September 22, 2016

Autumn...The Year's Last, Loveliest Smile

To celebrate the first day of Autumn, I'm reaching back in the archives to 2013.
I was still doing tablescapes then, and my inspiration was to carve out a pumpkin and use it as a centerpiece.

I loved mixing patterns, and still do.
Funny, everything is still packed up and in storage!

I think it's time to unpack all my dishes and get creative.
This is my tablelscape muse!

The year's last, loveliest smile!"
~William Cullent Bryant

Happy Fall Y'all!
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Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Buh-bye Summer

 Where did the summer go?  This morning, I realized that it is gone.
As I look out at the fog on the valley floor, I can smell fall--its crisp and clean scent hinting at the change in weather and season.

We all remember this time from our childhood.
The end of lazy summer days, and the excitement of back to school.
"What did you do this summer?" the teacher asks...
And so we wrote our first essay of the year.

What I Did This Summer
This summer I went on a California road trip, but more importantly, I got to spend a lot of time between Seattle and Taos, visiting family.
In Seattle, we celebrated birthdays with a traditional barbeque of hamburgers, hotdogs, corn on the cob and potato salad!

Followed by dancing on the patio with the grandchildren, their friends and all the in-laws!

I enjoyed seeing all my grown children together for the first time in a long time.
It was wonderful!

In Taos, I visited the Pueblo, the oldest pueblo in the US--over 1000 years old!

I shopped at the local boutiques, like this one, "Wanderer" which just happens to be my daughter's store.

I went to a barn dance and saw Michael Hearne and Michael Martin Murphy.

 I saw beautiful sunsets and amazing lightning storms in Taos...

...and back home, I saw the Harvest Moon rise over the mountains.

Summer, 2016 was a summer to remember.
A summer spent visiting family, appreciating the little things, like sunsets and moonrises, taking time to travel locally and enjoy our beautiful state as well.

What did you do this summer?
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Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Hanging Out In Ojai

 Ojai has been on my bucket list for a very long time.  
So when our daughter announced she was doing a pop-up at a local hotel in Ojai, we hit the road and met her there.

We discovered every store, including this one, Summer Camp which was located at an old gas station and filled with items both new and vintage.

Ashley was looking for inspiration here and we found it.
We were calling it "shop envy!"

More "shop envy" down the road at Cattywampus Crafts where crafters and makers can find everything they're looking for, including classes in knitting, sewing and dying fabrics.

Their art of display is wonderful!

Lots of yarn!

I felt like I was in a time warp.
Back to the 70's when macrame was huge.

I couldn't resist this handmade soap!

My favorite shop though was In The Field, a lifestyle boutique with a bohemian vibe.

I loved their displays too of both clothing and housewares.

I fell head over heals for a vintage California map here, but it was way to big to take home and shipping wasn't an option.

 Fig Curated Living is a curated collection of local and free trade gifts for home and garden.

Let's not forget, Ojai is an agricultural community, so a feed and seed store is going to be the best!
Just off the main street, we discovered Wachter Hay and Grain.  They bill themselves as chicken headquarters!

But they also have gifts and home furnishings!

All that shopping made us hungry so we ventured to Farmer and the Cook, a grocery store that also offers Mexican food and smoothies.
It just so happens to be down the street from Bart's Books!

 For dinner, we ended up here twice!
How can you go wrong with outside seating for the dog and live music every night!

It was a fantastic trip and not once did we hear a complaint from this little guy!
Oscar proved to be a great traveller which earned him the right to go on the next road trip with us!

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Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Eye Of The Day

 We promised ourselves that this summer we would fit in a road trip. 
 So last week, we packed our bags, grabbed the dog and headed south down highway 101 on an adventure. 
On our way, we happened to pull over in Carpenteria, only to discover Eye of the Day, which just so happened to be on my bucket list!

 I discovered this store online several years ago and had forgotten about it.
Eye of the Day carries beautiful, authentic pottery from Anduze, France which I've been in love with forever.
There are green Anduze pots (my favorite)...

 There are yellow Anduze pots...

And white, mottled Anduze pots, along with blue ones and various other colors.

 They have the best selection of terracotta from Italy... 

and France too.

I've been searching for a fountain like this forever.
Of course, they had many to choose from.
Not today though!

We ended up with a pair of green pots which I plan to plant with olive trees and place by the pool in Asti.  They are huge and totally filled the back of our truck as we were not about to pay for shipping!

 I highly recommend this store!  The owner, Brent was so patient with us as we obsessed over our pots and was determined to make them fit in the car!  
As we were leaving, I noticed the sign outside the door:
"August is like the Sunday of summer."
It felt that way as we headed further south, looking forward to more of our road trip and more discoveries before summer's end.
Stay tuned to find out where our journey took us and follow along on my Instagram too...

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Monday, August 1, 2016

Hello August!

 Have you also noticed how fast summer goes by, yet winter drags on forever?
This summer seems to be doing that.  I can't believe it's August already!

I've decided to spend as much time in Asti the month of August, and enjoy summer in all its glory in the country.
Even if the temperature climbs to 100 degrees!

After all, summer in San Francisco is like winter!
Mark Twain once said "The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco."

So, Oscar and I will head north tomorrow for the week with son Alex and granddog Lupo.
We plan to do lots of reading, gardening, hiking and swimming.

Hello August!

Hello Asti!

Looking forward to tomatoes right off the vine, still warm from the sun.

 Swimming and sunbathing.

 Reading my book, "Barkskins by Annie Prouix.

Watching the sunrise.

Watching the sunset.

And watching the moon rise over the Mayacamas.

So if you want to find me in August, I'll be right here!

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