If you have some time, pour yourself a cup of tea or coffee, get comfortable and enjoy my blog. It might be fun, and if you can please feel free to leave a comment, I really appreciate your thoughts. Also make sure you check out some of the blogs I follow. Truly inspiring.


Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Rose Chaos!


 So we came back from the shore and my roses had gone wild!  (Excuse the photos from my iphone, appear blurry)
I spent two hours today using string to lift up and trellis to support.  They were all on the floor.  Too long and leggy but unfortunately I can't trim because I have too many buds about to open.












I had planted two climbers about two years ago behind my porch swing.  I also installed these trellis against my porch for support in hopes that the roses would reach up and create the perfect back drop.  No luck.   None until now.  My girls were peeking in today.  
(Above is blurry, from my phone but couldn't wait to post it)
When I sat on my porch swing today all I could smell was the incredible fragrance of these two roses.  

Now in the past I have talked about my fav rose, Constant Spry - a David Austin rose that is not a repeater so it only blooms for three weeks in May.  It has the loveliest form, color and smell.  I simply adore it and when it is in full bloom and in all it's glory, look out.
Here is Constance a few years back


She was absolutely magnificent.  I had friends who would come to see her bloom.  Literally took your breath away.  
A few years ago we had a terrible storm which pulled the trellis right off the porch and broke constance in half.  The past three years I have been trying to get her back to where she was.  
The past three years have been difficult.  She went from hundreds of blooms (can't remember exactly the count but it was over 300) to 10 and this year 12.  I am so sad.  Here she is today.
The blooms are already gone, all 12 of them due to 90 degree days in May and heavy rains this month.
Maybe next year.  Going to email the David Austin people to find out what I need to do to help her bloom again.






Monday, May 28, 2012

At Home at the Beach

We spent the holiday weekend at our home at the shore.  I always feel as if when I'm there time goes by so fast.  Too fast.
When we first bought this house a few years ago I didn't want a garden.  I have a mega garden at home that takes up much of my time even though I have a garden group that comes a few times a year to clean up and do maintainance.  The house had a large garden with many different flowers that were high maintenenance for someone who is not there full time.  So Rob and I took out quite a few of the plants and our goal was to have only hydrangeas.  Two years ago our watering system broke without our knowledge.  Our grass was burnt as a result of it and all our hydrangeas died.  For the past two years I have been trying to replace all the ones that died.  The original owner had massive glorious ones.  If you read my blog regularly you know that I am a hydrangea addict.  
Anyway, last year we had a few bushes removed and the people who did it offered to replant a few plants.  I was clear, hydrangeas, but apparently I wasn't clear enough.  Now I love roses more than life itself but didn't want any at the shore.  I have about 40 rose bushes at home I didn't need anymore especially not knock out ones, which are not my favorite.  My rose of choice are Tea Roses, and almost all of David Austins, old English roses.  Knock out are a no brainer rose for a no brainer gardener.  They have no smell, make a big scene and a big mess and become spiny hedges.  No thank you.  Then the ornamental grass in the middle is not my taste.  Maybe as a corner accent but not smack in the middle of my front.  So we are having all that removed and replaced with . . . Hydrangeas.  
We must have spent 2 hours outside cutting things down and using the hedger on our roses of sharon hedge which is gigantic and every time we go we have to trim it down because the neighbors can't park their car if it's in the way.  Aye.
There are a few things we have to fix that involve a carpenter and time at the house.  But all in all everything was in good shape.  
I spent time walking on the beach, looking for seaglass, taking photos, bought new sandals, eating out (fried shrimp my fav) and trying to relax although lately that is harder than it used to be.
I only found one piece but it was something.

Tim surprised us on the weekend and Rob and he joined me in our search for sea glass on sunset beach.

Unfortunately this little guy didn't make it.

There were so many baby seagulls all around.
A few favorite things at our beach house.  
My collection of shells and seaglass that I have found over the years.  
My front little porch that is so comfortable to sit, relax and blow bubbles for Wally.
My bedroom window seat, even Wally loves it as much as I do.
My Comfy bedroom, very shabby shic.
That wicker chaise I bought from an antique store for 120.00.  I still can't get over what a deal that was.
My home made toile benches.  I covered them and love them so much. 
I always wanted an all white couch and furniture.  These wonderful slipcovers from Ikea are washable.  Love the look.
I love my armoire from Ethan Allen.  I store my summer throws inside.


Love this watercolor.  I found it at a boardwalk sale.  My friend Dawn has it in her bathroom and I had fallen in love with it.  On one of my trips I found it during the yearly craft and art boardwalk sale.  It fit perfectly in the master bath.
My kitchen is simple and easy and I love it.  The island is also from Ikea.  I think it added to the kitchen and made it appear larger than it is.  
Love this little tan gingham chair.

Love this wicker rocker.

Love my Ethan Allen hutch in a distressed white look.
Love my little sofa bed from Ikea in a flowered pattern outside of the master bedroom.  It is very sweet and comfortable and useful.  Many friends have slept on it.
These are just some of my favorite things that help make our beach house a comfy home.  Hope you liked the short tour.

















Thursday, May 24, 2012

Breathe. . .

It is memorial day weekend.  Aside from the period from Thanksgiving through Christmas this is the time I most look forward to.  The Summer.  I am addicted to the beach and everything pertaining to it.  I could be hours sitting mesmerized by her strength and beauty.  I have always felt drawn to the ocean.  I should have been a marine biologist (which is what my youngest wants to study)  I love marine life (and all animals) and I love the ocean.  But instead I am a writer.  In my stories the ocean always makes an appearance.  Why, because I am drawn to it.  I feel most alive when I'm away by the beach feeling the ocean breeze, burying my feet in her sand and feeling the suns rays upon my skin.  (With nothing less than 70 spf)
This is my time now, to retreat, to dream and do as little as possible.
It pains me not to be at my summer home as much as I'd like.  Someday, when I have no obligations at home I will close up my home memorial weekend and head to the beach and not return until the first days of September.
The sounds, smells, feel are all intoxicating to me making me feel free and calm and at peace.  Nothing allows me to feel that much peace within myself as when I am by the waters ebb leaving my trail along the wet sand.  It is there where I can imagine the future and contemplate on my life, my most proudest moments and my weakest.
I pray all of you have a wonderful summer.  Although I will not forget to blog, I tend to be more distracted during the warm months where all I want to do is lay out and not open my computer.
(Although my editor will not allow me to do that on our work day.)
So here I am wishing you sunny days, fragrant breezes and peaceful moments outdoors with the ones you love.
And always, find time for yourself to just be quiet and breathe.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Happy Birthday My Friend Dawn

Tomorrow is one of my best friend's birthday.  Dawn.  Today, Matthew and I took her and her oldest son Jared out for breakfast at one of our favorite local breakfast places, Pats.
 Here we are with our sons.  We are actually standing behind each other's sons. (Why do my cheeks look like a chipmonk?)
Although the day is a bit wet and damp, it felt sunny having breakfast with my sister and friend.  Love you Dawn.  Have a happy Birthday.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Perfect Weekend Weather and Garden Conditions With Many Party Problems!

So my son graduated from college and we had his Graduation BBQ on Saturday.  The most perfect day.  I had some family staying with me from Puerto Rico.  The weather was in the 80's and Sunny, no rain in sight.  My garden was as close to perfect as it could be.  I had 65 people on the list to attend.

Wisteria was in bloom.

My peonies were in bloom and fragrant.

My Roses where putting on a show!


Even the centerpieces that I made for the tables where in perfect bloom.
So what could possibly go wrong?
AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I had prepared food for 65 people on the day before.  My cousin, mom and aunt and I worked hard preparing everything.  There was no room to put anymore food.  25 people cancelled at the last minute.
My aunt was admitted to the hospital with a painful headache and extreme dehydration.  Our well decided to shut down.  WE HAD NO WATER!  I repeat.  WE HAD NO WATER!
For you city folk that is translated to mean : No water to wash dishes, no water to wash hands, no water to flush toilets and no water to shower.  So let's see fourty something people on a hot day drinking constantly and no flushing power.
Yikes!  All I can say is I was stressed.  But at the end of the day, I was happy.  Happy that I was able to put together an afternoon to celebrate my son and his achievement.  Graduating from College!  I was so proud.  And because of that, it really didn't matter that I have 4 extra large boxes of burgers still in my fridge, or about 25 chicken cutlets marinated in my refrigerator, another few pounds of steaks seasoned and on a platter next to the cutlets.  Half a graduation cake with more whip cream than I ever imagined eating waiting for someone to eat it.  It didn't matter that I had to scrub all the toilets around midnight to disinfect from sitting throughout a hot day without flushing power, or that many of our family and friends had been unable to come at the last minute.  None of it mattered.  My son had spent a day being honored and that was enough for me.
In the end no one will remember years later about the bathrooms, or about the details in the flowers or the food prepared, all that matters will be how we showed the people in our lives how much we loved and appreciated them.  
I tend to get so caught up in details, worrying about everything, stupid things, silly things, things that don't matter.  At the end of the evening we remember the laughter, the stories, the converstaions, the good times we shared.  After all, what is life but a series of moments.  Moments that we keep, mental photos in our mind or records we keep in our hearts, or on a blog.  It's about what we take from them that makes life precious.