Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Past and Present Easter Vignettes

Yesterday I worked on a centerpiece for the dining room table and
today I decided to change it, so I moved some things from the table
to the mantel.  I think I like this better.

Yes, I think the bunny looks happier here :-)

And I added some colored eggs to the base of the topiary.

Want to see some Easter vignettes from the past?

One year I made an Easter pocket pillow.   I just stitched on a felt
envelope so that a book and a bunny could be added.


Then another year I created Easter in a Tool Box.   Now this should
not surprise you because y'all know I never found a tool box
that I did not want to decorate ;-)


This was the year of the Easter Bunny Breakfast Tray.

A bunny bookmark was holding the flatware.

Mrs Rabbit and her bunnies.  Never too old for a little magic
from Beatrix Potter.

I almost forgot  ~ Easter in a Planter.  


One year I used wheat grass, tulips and hyacinths in a basket.
Very organic :-)


Flowers and chicks

Hope y'all had fun looking at my blasts from the past!

Wow Us Wednesday

Bentley ~ I just got off the phone with Aunt Susan.  She
wants me to look for a Yorkie for her.  Wouldn't that be great?
Then you would have a cousin!

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Monday, March 30, 2015

Simple Easter Centerpiece

Easter is pretty quiet at our house.  No kids running around and we 
will probably go out for brunch.  But I thought I should do something.

I found this bunny at Hobby Lobby a couple of weeks ago.  I
thought he was cute so I brought him home.

I never have had many Easter decorations.  We always spent the
holiday with family.  My Mom always went all out with her
centerpiece.  I know that she had decorations but I still have not
been able to find them.

So I just decided to keep it simple and use what I already had.

I am quite sure that y'all have come up with better ideas than
I have, but I thought I would let you see what's happening at
our house.

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Potted Plants for Porches

I have been hunting for ideas for potted plant arrangements for our back
porch.  Love this mix of shapes and colors of green.  


I have one fern and would like to get some more.  Ferns do well in
our shade and high humidity.

These hanging ferns always say "old South" to me.  Love them!


I am looking for a wall fountain, something like this one perhaps.
We have a spot for one on the brick wall that faces our patio.  We could
see the fountain from our back porch.  The previous owners had one
but took it with them.  That was written into their seller's contract which
was fine with us because we knew it had meaning for them.  So we
will get our own.

I worked out in the yard for two days straight.  The weather has
been delightful here and I enjoyed every minute being outside.
Our neighbors stopped by last night and we all sat out here until
well after midnight.  We all just wanted to soak in the evening's
pleasant temps as we know that before long the evenings will
be hot and humid.

We went to church this morning for the Palm Sunday
service.  It was lovely.  Then out for brunch.  David
caught his second wind and is playing golf.  Not me.  I am lounging
on the sofa resting my sore muscles from all that gardening :-)
Bentley is by my side.  He is tired too after a couple of days
of fresh air and a visit from Toby, our neighbor's dog last
night.  Life is good.

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Friday, March 27, 2015

The View From My Kitchen Window

For the last week or so, I have been greeted by my azaleas each
morning as I stand in front of my kitchen sink getting water for my
tea and sometimes for my coffee.  They are so pretty.  I wish they
were the everblooming variety that I have out around the patio,
but these only bloom in the spring.  

You can see my big old Pecan tree that has not leafed out yet.
It leaves me huge piles of leaves every fall, but now this section of
grass is leaf free.  Can't say the same for the rest of the yard because
my Live Oaks and my neighbors trees too, are shedding their leaves
now.  Wow ~ leaves everywhere!  I am trying to rake up as many
as I can and it's a never ending job.  Carlos, my wonderful
lawn and garden man will be coming in a few days to blow the
leaves off the roof and clean out the gutters.  Don't know how
we would live without Carlos!  He is a godsend.  My neighbor
Penni said that her husband could leave before she would ever
let her gardner go lol.  Our beautiful and ancient Live Oaks are
gorgeous, but they really keep us all busy in the spring!  

So I just thought I would pop in to say hi before Bentley and I
head back out to bag more leaves.  Well, I rake and bag,  
Bentley chases squirrels and cats and the sweet little cardinal
couple who live in one of our trees.  I see the trash man has been
by so I can bring that can back in too.  TGIF y'all!

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Thursday, March 26, 2015

What Floats Your Boat?

As you walk around your own cottage every day, what images
always make you smile?    For me it's little things such as my
miniature African Violet filled with pretty little blossoms.  It's on 
the window sill over my kitchen sink.  It's happy there getting it's 
daily dose of northern light.  

Thank you for blooming dear little violet!

My collection of blue and white china.

Some new and some old pieces all dearly loved.

Collected, inherited and treasured.

For the child's hutch in my studio.  A Christmas present from 
my husband a few years ago.  It honors the little girl who
still dwells in my soul.

And for the dollhouse miniatures which encourage that little girl
to come out and play.

For a cup of tea and a good mystery novel on a rainy

For the treasured memories of my parents ….

and grandparents too.

For gardening and the contentment it brings.

For those early morning hours in the kitchen when everything
is so still and peaceful.

And for the before dinner cocktail with my husband as we 
share the events of the day.

And of course for Bentley who makes every day a
happy one!

Treasured moments, happy sights ~ these are things
that float my boat.  What floats yours?

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Bentley Has Rules

Bentley is the epitome of sweetness but he is also a stickler for rules.
Don't let this darling face fool you because he is a taskmaster :-)

No matter if we are at home or on a relaxing vacation, Bentley's day begins
at 5:30 am.  Someone needs to let him out in the early pre~dawn so that he
can scope out the environment for any unwanted intruders.  When we are 
at home it's easy to do because one of us will just open up the door to the 
back porch, but on vacation it can be a bit more work depending on where
we are staying.

For example, last weekend we were staying in a lovely hotel on the 
San Antonio River Walk.  So at 5:30 am, I had to put on some sweats
and my running shoes and let him out directly onto the River Walk
path.  I forgot to bring my cell, but remembered my room key because
the hotel locks that entrance overnight.  So we went for a very short little
walk because honestly, it's kind of creepy out there at 5:30 am.  When
Bentley finished his duty, we returned to the back entrance.  

Guess what???

My room key would not open the back door.  Not to panic, I will 
just call the front desk from the emergency phone next to the door.


Okay, I am not panicing, I will walk a few steps over under our
balcony and call up to David.  


Quel Nightmare!

Of course, someone finally let me in when they were leaving
through the back entrance to go for a jog.  Our drama had ended ;-)

When Bentley has finished his 5:30 am duty, it is imperative that he be
given a treat.  After he has finished his treat, he wants to go back to bed.
However he must come up onto the bed from Mama's side.  It is not
the proper form to return to bed from Daddy's side.  Mama must return to
bed too and lay on her right side only ~ not the left ~ only the right side
so that Bentley can cuddle under the covers with her.  He needs to
catch a few more zzzz's and this is the only way to do it.

That is until he gets too hot under the covers.  Then and only then,
is Mama allowed to sleep on her left side if she choses.

Got it?  Good, because this daily pattern is etched in stone.
But we love him, so we follow his rules to a tee!

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Monday, March 23, 2015

Spring Cleaning the Back Porch

After days of rain and flooding in our area, we have a nice sunny day.
I took advantage of it by spending it cleaning our back porch.  All of the
huge live oak trees are dropping their leaves now.  There is a mountain of
leaves on the patio and many of them have blown up onto the porch.
So I swept and removed the wicker furniture to give everything a 
good cleaning.  I bought some annuals too to pot for some color.

Yesterday I was able to find some new cushions for the chairs.  The old ones
were looking pretty ratty and rather than try to clean them again, I replaced
them with more colorful ones.

The brick floor of the porch is still wet.  Things don't dry here as fast as
they did in Idaho.  See that bush next to the swing and in front of the post?

It's a gardenia bush and it is loaded with buds right now.  This is an
everblooming gardenia and it is supposed to bloom all summer.
I can hardly wait!

And I bought a new fern.  My old one got nipped the last time the temps
took a dive and I forgot to bring it inside.

It's a start.  I want to get some hanging baskets and some hummingbird 
feeders.  The hummingbirds have returned and I want to keep them
around.  My sister-in-law Cindy has several hummingbird feeders on
her porch up in Lago Vista and she gets visits every day.  They are
such a delight.

That's it for now.  I am going to hop in the shower and get some of 
the grime off of me.  Maybe I should give Bentley a bath first.  He
was outside all day having a great time rolling around in the grass and
hunting through the ginger for lizards.  We are having cocktails on
the porch at 6:00 PM.  If you are in the neighborhood, stop by!

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley


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