Thursday, September 27, 2018

Another Fall Tablescape ~ I'm On a Roll

While I have been paying attention to the news, I refuse to discuss it 
here.  I have my opinions and I have chosen to keep them private.
So while the hearings are on in the background, I decided to play around
with some Fall decor to keep myself feeling uplifted and not

I wish I had better light in my breakfast room, the dark clouds have
been in and out all day, and it's been hard to get the light I need and
want for these photos.   I know what's going to be on my Christmas
list this year ~ some big lights!

I wanted to show you this redware dish.  I have two of them and they were
given to me by a dear friend of my parents.  Jeanne had a lovely home filled
with many American antiques, and I was lucky enough to be on the receiving
end of some of her treasures.  

Redware Pottery is made with clay that has a high iron content that will
become reddish brown when it is fired in a kiln.  This type of pottery was
quite popular while our land was still under British rule.  As is typical
of many items from this time period and later, this pottery has a timeless
appeal, although it is not so common as it once was.  Like Shaker style
furniture, it has a simple and unique style that can easily blend in with
today's more modern looks.  It is earthy and can be a stunning accent for
simple pottery.

Of course, my personal style tends to lean toward the English county look,
I just had to mix in some red transferware too!

Enjoy these last days of September.  It's hard to believe that October is just
around the corner.  

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Monday, September 24, 2018

My First Fall Table for 2018

It all started out with a dough bowl, some pinecones, apples, and

Then I added a tartan throw.

The warm colors of Fall are so cozy and friendly.

Added some rustic bamboo flatware, and a sage green plate.

Willow placemats too.  Fall has taken over the breakfast room now!

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Friday, September 21, 2018

I Left My Heart in Virginia

Almost immediately after our wedding in Houston, the moving van
arrived and packed us up for our new home in Virginia.  I was so 
excited about moving to our new home in a state I loved so much.

Here I am behind the wheel of our Jeep Grand Wagoneer.  It was
one of those classics with the "wood" trim on the sides.   As I recall
when this photo was taken, I was driving through North Carolina, 
probably too fast, because I was so anxious to get home.

Fall always makes me nostalgic for this state.  The Fall festivals in
Northern Virginia were always fabulous, picture post card type 
events set in lovely little towns.  Oh how I long to be there right now.

My love affair with the state started in childhood.  My parents took many
trips to Virginia before I was born.  Then when I came along, the tradition
continued.  They took me to all the places they loved, seeing them all 
again through fresh new eyes.  I loved every minute of our trips through
Skyline Drive, the Blue Ridge Mountains, Charlottesville and Williamsburg.
I remember spending so much time in the pool at the Williamsburg Inn
that my skin shriveled.  It was heaven!

My home sweet home will always be the suburbs of Chicago's North
Shore.  I have lived in NYC and loved it,  the beautiful state of Idaho too,
and still own property up in the mountains there.  Now I am once again
back in Texas, but in my heart of hearts, I will always hold dear the
state of Virginia.  

I lived in horse country in the most beautiful and historic town
you can imagine.  Every day was magic there, like a village out
of a well loved fairy tale.  The cottage we lived in had views of
the Blue Ridge, a very old low stone wall around the property,
a little red barn out back where a fox made residence.  The drive
into town was seven miles of beautiful scenery through forest
and past beautiful horse farms and estates and over charming
one lane bridges.  Everything I dreamed about.  Enchanting!

Here I am in South Texas dreaming of a wonderful time of my life
back in Virginia where the season of Fall is displayed in all it's glory.
You will read much more about these glorious settings when the first book
of my mystery series is published.  

Thanks for spending time with me and sharing some wonderful memories.

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Monday, September 17, 2018

Putting My Life Back In Order

Last week was a blur because I wasn't feeling well.   I was afraid it 
might be serious because of the quick onset of chills, a fever, and
congestion in my lungs.  I know all too well the symptoms and signs
of pneumonia and or bronchitis.  Thankfully, that all seems to be
gone now.

When I feel sick, my normal routine is tossed aside and I feel
out of touch.  I'm working on getting back on track today.

Sorry I have been missing in action.  

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Friday, September 7, 2018

Helpful Fall Decor Ideas

It's still in the 90's here and exceptionally humid.  This weather hardly
puts one in the Fall decorating mood.  I don't like to go Fall crazy
too soon, because it's not officially Fall just yet.  I am one of those
girls who like to ease into the season.  

Regardless of all this heel dragging and moaning, I probably
should start thinking about what I will do.  One thing I know 
for sure is that I don't want to go crazy creating Fall all over
the house.  It's fun putting it out, not so much fun putting
it all away.   That being said, I will just use Fall scented 
candles and some Mums inside and keep it all simple.

However ....

I am going to put all my focus on decorating the
She Shed, that beloved little spot that I have named
Sweet Tea Cottage.  I need a little nudge to
get me going, in other words ....

What Did I Do Last Year???

Thank goodness for archives.  I can refresh my 
little gray cells with ideas from the past.  

Are you that way too?  Do you forget some of your decorating
creations from the past, or are they always fresh in your

Earlier this past spring, I reorganized my seasonal decorating
storage and gave lots of things away.    I saved the absolute
favorites and that's it.  

Shortly I will bring out the boxes of Fall.  I am not exactly
sure of what I want to do, what my theme will be, but I 
am sure it will come to me as I start playing around.  It
is safe to say there will probably be a trip to Hobby Lobby
in my future ;-)

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Handling Daily Worries

My parents were perfectionists.  The house was always perfect.  Everything
in it's place all of the time.  In the morning, my Mama never hung around
in her bathrobe.  She would get up, make the bed and get dressed for the
day.  She fussed over her outfit and her hair.  She wore minimal make-up,
but she always looked polished and ready to face anything.  Daddy was
the same.  They also had perfect penmanship.  Every letter flawlessly
created to reflect their orderly lives.  They were also worriers, especially
my Mama.

I wonder if worrying is a genetic trait.  If it is, I have inherited the
tendency.  It's taken me a long time to realize that the things I 
have worried about over the years have never become a reality.
I have often heard the phrase let go and let God.  Knowing this to
be the wise choice, why have I often resisted to the temptation to
try to handle things without His help?  I start to believe that I
have some power on my own, when in reality I am barely a 
blip on the radar in this vast universe.  

Life becomes so much more peaceful when I hand over the reins.
I have to remind myself of this every single day.   

Years ago, while in college, I had a math professor that drew a 
square on the blackboard.  She asked us to imagine that this square
was a patch of grass and that each of us were walking from one 
corner to the other in a diagonal and creating a path.  The grass
under our feet would wear away, and the way to the corner became
ingrained in our minds.  That's what happened when math problems
were repeated.  Over time, we would automatically know the formulas
to solve any problem.

Each day I begin my own journey, from one corner to the other, not
solving math problems, but reminding myself that I must have faith
and not worry.  Hopefully one day the pathway will be so clear that
I won't even have to think about it.  It will be etched in my soul.

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Saturday, September 1, 2018

Happy 1st Day of September!

It's a three day holiday weekend!  Enjoy your Labor Day and
take some time out to relax.

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley


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