Sunday, February 28, 2010

Winter into Spring

When I first moved to Vermont I felt frustrated because everyone always would talk about the weather. At first I thought that it was a tough reserve but then, as I lived here longer, I realized that Vermonters talk about the weather so much because there's so much weather to talk about. There's a saying here that if you don't like the weather, just wait ten minutes. Our monster snow storm of last week turned into another day of rain and several days of warmth. 

It's possible that we won't see the ground until April but, at the moment, it's promising an early spring. Whatever happens, I'm enjoying where I'm at very much.

Here are a few things that brightened my day on Saturday:

The light, now strong enough, catching the bottles on top of our kitchen dresser.

The date set for my annual ladies' tea - March 20th. Pretty paper to put the invitations on.

A hot cup of tea for while I work.

I had an idea for what to do for floral arrangements on the tables. I will probably have somewhere between 25 to 50 women and the cost, even though I absolutely love to buy armloads of flowers for bouquets, can be a bit formidable.

I am going to plant wheatgrass in these depression glasses that I have. Then, on the day, making sure that the soil is well watered, I will put small stems of spring flowers, like rununculas or forsythia or something bright and spring like, in the grass.

I was preparing to get started and was snapping these photos, when I glanced out the window. What a sight I saw!

Fog is something that we mostly see in the spring and the fall. It's one of my very favorite things about living here near the pond. I love fog!

It was gloriously beautiful. My poor hot cup of tea was abandoned as was my project. Then as I took my eyes off of the pond and looked down, I saw another truly happy sight. A muddy road! I think that I might be unique in this but I think muddy roads are very pretty. The puddles of water are pink shimmering mirrors.

Even though Mom's apple tree met with disaster last winter it seems to be resurrected. Talk about new life.

There are not only beautiful scenes but refreshing sounds also; like the sound of running water in the brook. Thaw!

I keep meaning to mention that it's not only the robins who are back. There are also morning doves and yellow finches and sparrows. The coo of a morning dove equals peacefulness.

Well, the informal tea that the boys and I had planned kept getting postponed. I haven't been able to get them inside to have a cozy tea or even to finish cleaning their room.

I came inside and put in some music. I've discovered something, '20s, '30s and '40s ballads are extremely uplifting.

Here's a sample of what I was listening to. I wonder if it will make you feel as comfy, homey and cheery as it did me. 

Get a playlist! Standalone player Get Ringtones

I discovered that I wasn't alone in the house.

Lliam had snuck back in and was continuing Flopsy bun's reading lessons.

The dark finally drove everyone in and I got a Grandma in the bargain to boot!

And a fresh hot cup of tea ...


Love to you,

Katy Noelle x

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Completely Random

This is my birthday rose. Actually, it was a mystery rose that we bought on sale. It was always blooming beautifully right on my birthday and I would pick a gorgeously fragrant bouquet. It may have met its demise when we moved from the parsonage to our own home a year and a half ago but I will remember it fondly forever.

My visitor counter says that not many people have visited my site in the past 24 hours. It's very unusual. My guess is that everyone is watching and focused on the olympics. This is one of the rare times that I wish that we had television reception. I love Ladies' Figure Skating!

The photo on the last post, however, (the snowy, Robert Frost type picture) is depressing me. I need a bit of hope that growing things and warm, gentle breezes still exist.

Therefore, here are some completely random pictures.

In my last post, I commented on one of my favorite decorating schemes - green with blue accents. This is our newly painted hall in our new home with the new fabric for curtains hanging on the coat peg. Most wonderful, are the lilacs blooming outside the door. That's what this picture is really about. The memory of the fragrance wafting through, carried on those gentle breezes  and permeating the house is very uplifting.

This is a picture of the hall in our old house. I had just painted it with the same color scheme when we found out that we were moving. Um, also, this is a picture of the boys on their way to school for "crazy hat day".

Hiking in the woods! Doesn't the thought just bring a tear to the eye? Once again, can't you just smell the fresh mountain air and the pines?

A stump fence!!! Actually collected in the Shelburne Museum which is a museum of museums.

Aaaaaaah! That's better! Thank you!

Love, Katy Noelle

P.S. Dear Farmer Tom snorted when he read that I'll always remember my birthday rose fondly. Ah well, I wrote what I meant and I meant what I wrote. 

P.S. again. Have you ever grieved for a favorite plant that just suddenly couldn't make it any longer. I'm sure that I'm not alone in this.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

If you don't have anything nice to say ... talk about the weather!

"Snow likely" - HA!

Silly weather man!

There was no school today.

I am writing this post by candlelight. Well, there's a candle lit here because the power is flickering and the lights keep dimming.

This is the fourth white post in a little over a week. The snow is beautiful but I am craving color.

I've absolutely loved this book for over a decade now. I've logged in hours and hours studying the pictures or just feeding my color and design addiction.

Out of all of the interior design books and magazines I've ever looked at, the following room is one of my absolute favorites of all time.

I wrestled with the decision to include this today because the light was very, very tricky for photography. Please forgive the quality. I have a feeling that I will share this room again but there is a particular reason that I'm showing it to you today.

One of the things that I love about this room is the layering of different colors of green and pattern. Nothing is matching (as in there are no two chairs that are the exact same, done in the same fabric). Yet everything is a beautiful, blended whole. This makes it so relaxed and intimate to me - less formal. Also, it gives it a wonderful evolved over time, established feel like it's been there for a long time. Comfy!

I also love the accents of "blue willow" and blue toile. Of course blue and green match but I rarely seem to see it as a decorating scheme. Just look at nature, however, (well, in Vermont anyway) there's blue and green everywhere outside - during the normal parts of the year that is. (Scusi! I am feeling a bit querulous towards winter at the moment because the snow has flattened our lilac hedge and trimmed our giant white pines in a most unflattering manner.)


Then, there are those perfect little bright touches of gentle pink.

Let's also observe the severely happy sunniness emanating from the windows.

With all of this, I wonder if you could guess what absolutely makes this room the tops for me.

If you noticed it too, you are truly a precious kindred spirit.

There is pure joy in the thought of a vintage Scrabble game! That is just the piece de resistance that makes this room truly divine! 

I am secretly hoping that the storm coming in on the heels of this one is a doozy so that the kids can stay home tomorrow. (Oops! It's a secret no more.) If it is, maybe we'll play some Scrabble.

Fancy a game?

Wishing you a happy, cozy day no matter what it brings and where you are,

Katy Noelle x

Monday, February 22, 2010

Super Chicken's Fine Day Out (a true story).

The forecast says, "snow likely" for the next week or so. This evening the clouds have started to move in. I have to confess that I've been dreading it. Winter is still with us.

Today, however, lovely today has been like spring again.

We've had more thaw, it seems, than snow this year. I can see the ground and the mud keeps threatening to suck my shoes off of my feet. One year, we had ten feet of snow in March. It was piled so high from the snow falling off of the roof that we couldn't see anything but white out of our first floor windows! I think that this year is going to be completely opposite of that.  You never know, but, I feel quite in a flurry and a hurry to get those seeds ordered soon. I think part of the reason that I feel so compelled to get a move on is because ...

today I saw my first robin!!!!!!!!

There was a whole flock of about thirty actually. They were looking for worms but there's only about an inch of thaw on the ground. It's still quite frozen beneath. (What do the worms do when the ground freezes?) They (the robins I mean) seemed very happy to make do with the plethora of hips from our old fashioned Goliath rose bush though.

I was born and raised in California and have only lived in Vermont for a short seventeen years. I never quite fully understood the poetry of spring. I mean, I'm rather a romantic soul so I enjoyed the sentiments, but, I had no concept, living in the land of eternal sun, what it's like after the bleak winter to welcome back feathered friends that were taken for granted until they were gone for so long.

In short, it's quite a to-do around here when the robins are back.

Meanwhile ...

Super Chicken (that is her name) escaped from the enclosure for the first time since the autumn.

There was liquid H2O to examine.

When you're Super Chicken, you're bold as brass. Nothing frightens you.

Why not head into the big dark barn? I mean, there might be food there.

We must confess, there was some jealousy in the barnyard today.

Handsome Jack paced back and forth keeping a watchful eye on her and nudging any other hens that had any bright ideas and came too close to the wire.

... but, when you're Super Chicken, the world is an adventure just waiting to be discovered.

Flopsy Bun agrees, life is pretty darn good!

Love and cheer,

Katy Noelle

Saturday, February 20, 2010

"There's some blue sky. Let us chase it!" - Marianne Dashwood

What an absolutely gloriously beautiful day it was today. Simply put, it held the promise of spring.

Everything was light and bright. I felt so refreshed. Everything looked new - like I'd never seen it before - both inside and out. It was a lovely day.

Perhaps the warmish temperature had something to do with it. Perhaps it was hearing familiar birds' songs that have been missing through several months of winter silence. Maybe it was the white puffy clouds floating high in the sky instead of low, dark and glowering.

Spring, even if it's only the February thaw, can make us so poetic.

I was doing more "spring" cleaning today but finally gave in and plopped down on the couch to soak it all in and to ruminate. I never get tired of the sunny spot here.

The boys spent almost the entire day outside. There was no dashing back inside after a short time to melt out by the fireplace. They've invented a new olympic sport. Plastic sled snow boarding. They're so cool!

The chickens heard the shouting up on the hill and seized they're opportunity to squawk out their complaints. They've been stuck inside again since the snow's been so deep that it would be over their heads. The snow has thawed enough now. I threw them some scratch (you know, yum!) The rooster walked the plank first and the girls all came out after him - all lined up behind him. Trouble was, he was stuck at the end of the diving board - afraid to jump off. If one more hen came out, he'd be tossed into the drink. Safely, they all, decided to beat a hasty retreat back into the hen house. 

Another toss of scratch and they thought that they'd brave it after all. They stayed on this little rock island for a while. I think that they eventually enjoyed the sun too.

Bottoms up!

Meanwhile, back inside ...

Yesterday, I unpacked a box from our move a year and a half ago. It was labeled "silver tea pots". Since I had no place for them to go, they've stayed safely sealed up but when I finally opened the box, oh joy, I found some missing friends. A gigantic cloud came along to make it difficult to take good pictures of them. I'll have to do that later.

This lovely lady is one of them.

Maybe a couple of you remember the post about how I was spending the gift card that Tom got me for Christmas to the local antique center. Here's what else I got.

I also got a lovely blue plate. (The lower one.)

As I was photographing all of this glorious blue, I noticed a matching flash out the window. Of course, I chased it! Now it's a beautiful evening.


Katy Noelle