Tuesday, June 30, 2015

4th of July Cupcake Station

I love cupcakes and created a little 4th of July cupcake station in one area
of my breakfast room so that anyone walking through on their way to
the back porch can grab a cupcake.

I found this cute little ribboned cake stand at …..any guesses???

At Home Goods of course.  I never seem to walk out of that
store empty handed :-)

Bentley is on high alert for cats today.  They are keeping him
really busy!  

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Monday, June 29, 2015

Posh Pups in the Bath

As I told you last week, the theme for my guest bath is "Posh Pups".
I started the decorating with this little vanity stool.  It used to look 
like this below ….

The seat of the stool was covered in a cream colored Damask.  It was
pretty, but had no pop.

So ….

I covered it with this posh pup dog print.  I used some of this fabric
for a pillow for the guest bedroom.  I loved it in there and thought,
why not in the bath too?   I also thought it will be nice if these
two rooms are coordinated.

The colors of the room will be spa blue, off white and touches of 
gold.  I am ready to start stripping off the wallpaper.  I plan to use
a combination of water and fabric softener to do this.  I have used
this method before and it's a winner.  I'll show you my process as
it happens.

More to come!

Speaking of pups ~ our dear little Bentley has a major,
major crush on our neighbor's Chihuahua named Bella.
I expect him to deliver some flowers to her any day
now :-)

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Enduring Friendships

One of the reasons I love antiques is that each piece has a 
history.  Someone once loved and treasured the item and for
whatever reason have now passed it on.  Sometimes a vintage
teapot or creamer is checked and cracked from use.  Other
times the piece is like new, as if it were stored away in a
hutch or cabinet and only brought out on special days.

Or perhaps its an old piece of furniture, nicked and worn in many spots 
from constant use.  Those are the pieces so many of us gravitate towards 
because they hold a special charm.  Sometimes we find new pieces and
try to make them look old, but there is always a certain newness about 
them that only time can adequately embellish.

Some friendships are like that.  I feel so fortunate to have some friends
with whom I have shared the nicks and abuses of life.  Old friends who 
have shared the stages of life with me from elementary school right 
up to today.  We have gone through first boyfriends, college applications,
sorority hazing, marriage, babies and every little twist and turn down
life's path.  Yet there is a special bond that we share that is unbroken
and just seems to become more cherished and dear as the years go by.

Then there are the somewhat newer friends.  There is
not the same history that is shared because we have met
as adults so we create a history together from a different
starting point.  Perhaps we meet in the workplace or we
are neighbors.  We may have been born in different cities
or countries of the world, yet there is some instant 
recognition of heart that draws us together and cements
a bond.  The longer we interact, the stronger that bond

Or perhaps we have not yet met face to face, but have met via
blogging.  We discover that we have the same interests.  We 
quickly make up for lost time by visiting each other's blogs and
then sending emails.  Day by day that bond grows and we
are no longer acquaintances, but friends.  True friends.

The longer I have lived and moved from place to place in this big
wide world, the more friends I have held in my heart.  We are so
lucky to live in a world where the distance in miles between us is
shortened by our instant communication.  It makes it so much 
easier to share special moments in real time despite being so
far away from each other.  

So to me, friendships are a lot like antiques.  We all suffer a few
nicks and scars along the way, but the heart of the friendship is
still there and all the more dear in it's cherished patina.  

I just want to say thank you to all of you who have been so kind to
extend your hand in friendship.  You make my little world a much
happier place and I treasure you.

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Friday, June 26, 2015

Lazy Hazy Days

I have always been a fan of summer reading.  The pleasure of kicking
back and reading a book just for fun has stayed with me each and every
summer since childhood.  

Once or twice a week during our summer holidays, my friend Caroline
and I would ride our bikes to the village library and check out as many
books as our bicycle baskets would hold.  Our treasured library cards 
were always maxed out all year long, but even more so during the lazy,
hazy days of summer.  I remember the excitement of bringing those
books home and setting them on my dresser, carefully deciding which
title would be the lucky first read.

My mom always insisted on lots of fresh air and exercise, so the books
would have to remain on my dresser, unopened until after dinner.  Then
I would grab my bathing suit, towel and sunglasses and hop on
 my bike once again.  This time headed to the beach with friends for
the rest of the day.

Such happy, carefree, childhood days.

We were so lucky to live right near the shores of Lake Michigan.
I treasured my yearly summer beach pass.  As we rode down the tree
lined streets headed to the lake I remember laughing and telling
jokes and stories with my friends.  The streamers of my handle bars
flying along side me as I peddled as fast as I could towards the lake
past pretty houses and lush green lawns.  Soon we would be there
for the rest of the afternoon.  Sand between our toes.  Seeing who
could stay underwater longest.  Who could swim the fastest.  How
many popsicles we could buy with the money we kept in our beach

Precious moments that are fleeting and never to be recaptured again.

All grown up for many years now, I continue to think of summer as a
lazy and dream filled time.  I still head to the library once a week and 
check out lots of titles.  It's a time to loose myself once again in
the joy of summer reading.  Decorating books.  Cookbooks.  Whatever
my heart fancies.  

Magazines through the mail or picked up on a whim from the 
grocery store.   

And of course a good "beach read".  Nothing too heavy.  Something
easy and uncomplicated to open up and lose myself in for a couple 
of hours.  Soft music in the background.  The slight breeze of the
overhead ceiling fan.  A delightful way to spend a hot and hazy

But then of course ….

There is always the temptation of an afternoon nap.
Such are the hazy, lazy days of summer.

Pink Saturday

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Thursday, June 25, 2015

The Lone Star Tablescape

I am very pleased to show you my Lone Star Tablescape.   Last fall at
the Round Top Antiques week, I purchased this Texas tablecloth.  I 
could hardly wait to bring it home and start looking for the perfect
tablescape elements to accent my find.

I already had the wicker chargers and the gingham plates, but I 
recently found the bandana salad plates and Lone Star bowls at
my HEB.

I put red handled flatware in this cute little pitcher I found recently 
at Home Goods.

Look closely and you can see our little town on the map.  There
we are ~ Victoria.

I just think this tablecloth is so much fun!

Of course I added water pistols.  We are not so politically correct that we
can't have a little fun spritzing each other in this south Texas heat :-)

Thanks for stopping by and y'all come back real soon!

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Texas Toast Treat

Hi y'all!  Do I ever have a yummy treat for you today.  It's my
Texas Toast Treat and it is really yummy.

I have gathered up all of the ingredients ~

Texas Wild Flower Honey Peanut Butter
Texas Honey
Texas Toast

This is the basis of the treat and any old bread just won't give you
the same result as a thick slice of Texas Toast right out of the 
toaster.  So good that you might be tempted to eat it just plain. 

But wait ….

Spread that warm thick slice of Texas Toast with some Texas Wildflower
Honey Peanut Butter Spread.  That will be good too.

But wait, we are not done yet ….

Drizzle the top with some Lone Star, Texas Best Honey!


Now if you are not lucky enough to live in Texas ;-)  you can use another
kind of bread and peanut butter and honey ….

But it won't be quite as good.  Just saying'!

Come back to visit us tomorrow.  I am setting a Texas Tablescape.

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Rooms That Have Gone to the Dogs

I was telling you last week that I am planning on refacing the guest
bathroom.  I tossed around a few ideas and then it occurred to me that
I already have some fabric left over from another project and it has a
dog theme.  You may be thinking …. why dogs?  Well, because I
love them and I am not the only one who likes rooms that have
Gone to the Dogs.

So I was hunting around the internet for some ideas and accessories
and came across a few rooms that put a big smile on my face.
Rooms like this one all decorated with with a Poodle theme.
This room is so original and fun ~ I love it!


Or how about this room that has completely gone to the dogs.  Of course,
if I did something like this for Bentley, he would never stay in the room
unless I stayed in there with him :-)


Pug wallpaper!


This is Mario Buatta's New York City living room.  Even the Prince of
Chintz has put his stamp of approval on the canine decorating theme.

Then of course, since there are canine accents throughout our home
already, why not more???

Let's check in with Bentley and see what he thinks ….
Yes, Bentley gives the canine theme a paws up!

Wow Us Wednesday

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Monday, June 22, 2015

Welcome to 312 Cottage Lane

On Saturday I was at Hobby Lobby.  I know what you are going to say,
that I am always hanging out there.  Well, it's true, I do go there quite often.
I was looking at some fabric, trying to get ideas for my guest bath facelift
when I came across one of those plain brown cardboard dollhouses.  It was 
only $5.00 and I thought that I could paint it and use it on the little vintage
chest in my studio. That chest needed a third decorating element, so 
what a good excuse ….

Y'all know how much I love to create vignettes!

So yesterday afternoon while David was watching the US Open,  I
decided to paint the dollhouse.  Well of course I got a little bit 
carried away.  Then David decided to get in a quick 9 holes at the
club and I was happily creating in my studio while listening/viewing
Season Two of the Mary Tyler Moore Show on my Mac.

So here is what I did.  I painted the body of the house yellow.  Added
white paint around the windows.  Painted the roof and chimney.  Cut
out cardboard shutters from some cardboard that was on it's way out
to the recycle bin.  I took some lace trim and made little valances for
the windows.  I made a Dutch Door for the entry.  I think every cottage
needs a Dutch Door!  Don't you?  Painted the front stoop.  I had an
extra dollhouse crystal knob and attached a few pickets around the

Then I made a little address place and suddenly …

312 Cottage Lane was born!

Now it's living happily on the vintage chest and all is right
and happy in my studio.

Where was Bentley while all this mini house painting was going on?
In his favorite chair in my studio.  Then outside to see what was
going on.  Then barking at the front windows at the cat walking
across the yard.  Then sitting in his Daddy's lap.  Then back in
the chair in my studio  ….. and repeat of all the above :-)

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Missing You Daddy

Forever in my heart.

Missing you today Daddy.

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Friday, June 19, 2015

My Guest Bath Challenge

This is the guest bathroom.  Keep in mind that these are all before
pictures.  Now there are some things that I like about this bathroom.
It's size, for example is good for a secondary bath.  I like the long
granite countertop and the  built in vanity.  

There is a good amount of mirror space and lots of under counter 

There are two nice size built in medicine cabinets, one at each end of
the counter.  Always a plus.

The toilet is recessed.  That's a nice feature in a secondary bath too.

On to what I hate.  I hate the tub enclosure.  I hate the border and the
wallpaper too. The paper is coming off and the tub enclose is 
coming out.  Don't like the towel bars either.  

Oh, and I forgot to tell you that there is a nice size linen closet
in here too.

I want to fix up this bathroom, however I do not want to spend a lot
of money.  In other words, I want it to look much better, but I don't 
want to break the bank on it either.  So I have challenged myself
to come up with an elegant and plush guest bath spending as little
money as I can.  I want a spa retreat feel with a lot of bang for
my buck.

I am working up plans and gathering up resources for my ideas.
I will keep you posted on my progress and when I am all 
finished I will show you the big reveal.  

Now ~ first thing is to remove that wallpaper and I can 
hardly wait to start stripping it off!

For those of you who follow me on Facebook, here is an
update on the snake and our truck.  We have not seen him
since last night :-)

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley


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