Sunday, March 31, 2013

Happy Easter From Charleston

'Twas Easter-Sunday. The full-blossomed trees
Filled all the air with fragrance and with joy.
~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Spanish Student

Happy Easter from Charleston, Y'all!

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Saturday, March 30, 2013

Oak Alley Plantation

What a treat to visit Oak Alley Plantation!
Situated on the Mississippi River, it is one of the few preserved plantations open to the public near New Orleans.

Oak Alley
This Greek Revival home was built in 1837 and was situated to take advantage of an alley of oak trees that were planted by early settlers in the 1700's.
These trees are 300 years old and are expected to live another 300 years!

Let's take a tour!

Starting with the grand entry.

A large veranda, as seen from the living room, surrounds the entire home, both top and bottom, providing shade during the hot summer.

The parlor.

The parlor table is set with rum for the men, and a jar of fruit soaked in rum for the women.
Since it was unseemly for women to drink liquor, they got around it by eating the rum soaked fruit!

The dining room can seat 16 people.

The large object hanging from the ceiling is actually a fan, not a chandelier.
A rope is attached to it, and during dinners, a slave would stand in the corner and pull it so the guests were fanned.  There was an art to this:  too much and the candles blew out!

A typical Creole tablescape!

At the top of the stairs is the mourning room.
When someone died, the body was laid out for viewing here.
The room was also used as an isolation room when someone was ill.
Yellow Fever was common and two of the original owner's children died from it.

The Master bedroom...

...with a gorgeous hand carved bed.

The upstairs hallway.
Notice the stairs going up another floor.
Unfortunately, we didn't get to explore up there.

The last owner, Mrs. Josephine Stewart lived to be in her 90's and died in 1972.
This was her room.

Our tour guide in costume.

This is the money shot!
A breathtaking view from the veranda, looking down oak alley towards the Mississippi River.

The upstairs veranda.

Outside, there are beautiful boxwood gardens planted by the last owner, Mrs. Stewart.
At one time there were roses too.
The building in the distance is a garage with two antique cars.

There is a Civil War replica tent set up on the grounds.

Mr. A found the history fascinating.
I found the tent with all the furnishings fascinating!

The Civil War historian.

Recently, Oak Alley Foundation reconstructed a slave quarters exhibit. 
This is a typical fireplace in one cabin. 

A mortise and tenon rope bed.

Seeing Oak Alley Plantation was worth the two hour bus ride from New Orleans.
It felt like we were back in time during the Antebellum South days.

For more information, watch this short video, or visit their website here.

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Thursday, March 28, 2013

How Much Is That Pot In The Window?

"The one with the beautiful patina?" Asks Mr. A, as we stroll down Royal Street in the French Quarter.
I took him to New Orleans and he is loving the antique stores here!

He spotted these two gorgeous Anduze pots in the window of Antiques de Provence.
I remember seeing them back in January on my girl's trip.

There are more Anduze pots in their courtyard, signed by the artists and very expensive.

They are just gorgeous!

I love their courtyard with all the French pottery...

...and stone fountains.

There are cupboards full of confit pots and dough bowls.
I'm a little excited with their selection, especially the green confits.
They are so rare.

The shop girl set them aside for us.
I love the green confit pots and Mr. A is all about the dough bowl.
Still haven't "pulled the trigger" though.
Perhaps today we will go back and buy one of them.
Which one would you choose?
The dough bowl, the large dark green confit, or the small confit?

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Monday, March 25, 2013

On The Road Again

Five one way flights, a nine hour drive and four cities.
We are off on an adventure!
First, we went here for the weekend...

Today, we fly here for a few days...

Before we fly here... 

and here for a few more days!
Where in the world is vignette design?
Stay tuned.  I'm packing my camera!

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Friday, March 22, 2013

Spring Flowers

Just a few spring flowers in the neighborhood to share...
My neighbor's primroses.

Does anyone know what this is? 

A daffodil with a bite out of it!

Flowering plum trees.

 I love Johnny Jump Ups!

My white azaleas are popping out along side the driveway.

Last, but not least, a lone Calla Lily.
Hope you are enjoying these first days of spring!

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Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Happy Spring!

“Is the spring coming?" he said. "What is it like?"...
"It is the sun shining on the rain and the rain falling on the sunshine...”
~Francis Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden 

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Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Spring Cleaning In 30 Seconds!

 Last week, my friend Martin and I tackled the grungy brick and teak furniture in the back yard with a power washer and a product called 30 Seconds.

This stuff is amazing!

 Right before your eyes, teak goes from gray to brown, literally eliminating all the mildew and mold, restoring the wood to its original color.

 Since we haven't power washed the brick in two years, it was really a mess.
 Martin first power washed it.

What a difference!

For the stubborn areas, we sprayed 30 Seconds.
It took a couple of tries, but eventually the brick came clean.

 My son thought we got a new teak set!

 These stairs were really black.  And slippery.
I'm asking myself why don't we do this every year, because I just love clean brick!

So does Oscar!
And there you have it, spring cleaning in 30 Seconds!

30 Seconds is available at Home Depot, Ace Hardware, Sears, Lowes, Bed Bath and Beyond.
Just about every home improvement store!
Or you can order it from their website here.

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