Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Squeals of Delight

If you were standing in Heathrow airport this afternoon you would have heard squeals of delight when the lovely Kate and my daughter, Miss Claire first caught sight of each other. They were BFF (Best Friends Forever) in Auckland, where we moved from at the end of 2009.  Kate was one of the friends that was there at the end, the one who shared and passed the tissue with us as we spent the last day in the country we called home. Here we are seven months on and the lovely Kate has graced us with her warm smile and bubbly nature once again.

I was grinning from ear to ear on the ride home just listening to the two of them. You would never know that they talk on Facebook nearly every day and then some. No matter, you know what it is like when you catch up with someone you have not seen in a feels like it was just yesterday.

A gaggle of girls jumping with joy last year...

rowing together...

Not sure if they are checking out the races 
or the boys in their zooties:)

The effervescent Miss Kate

Kate travelled from New Zealand to England on her own...that kiwi ingenuity never ceases to amaze me.
Do you remember when you were 17?  A trip driving solo from my home town to the mall 
in the next town was about as far as I got and I thought that was pretty cool! 

I wanted to make sure Kate feels comfortable after a long journey
so I put on my thinking cap and thought like a teenager....

A little night time reading provided by Miss Claire...

Lots of pillows to sink back into and sigh...

Flowers from the garden to remind her of home...

A few essentials to wash away the memories of the flight...

Two weeks and lots to see...
They are going to have a ball!

Thought I would share a little teenage lingo with you that I picked up over dinner.
Ever wondered what all these abbreviations stand for that they use in their conversations?
I do and here is what they told me.

TTYL- talk to you later
TTFN- ta ta for now
TTFG- ta ta for good
BRB- be right back
NVM- never mind
WU2- what you up to?
NM- nothing much
JW- just wondering
DW- don't worry
GTG- got to go
BFF- best friends forever
ILY- i love you
LOL- laugh out loud and or lots of love

and one I made up BBF- best blogging friend

With that I say

Jeanne :)

First two images provided by another BFF 
other images~me

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Thinking Green and White

It is a hot summer's day
and I am thinking green, 
all shades of it..
emerald, sea green, mint, aquamarine, forest, chartreuse, 
moss, sage, viridian, lime, spring green, apple
I am thinking how much I love them with white.
An accent here, an accent there...
Green is life. White is fresh.
Bringing the outdoors in,
winter or summer,
even the slightest hint
and I feel calm again.
Time for tea...iced green tea
join me?


and the perfect way to end a green and white summer's day...

at a beach house...

with a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc!

Green and white :)


Monday, June 28, 2010

Summer Sundays and the Sea

I can't tell you how much fun it is to create these 'meme's for Summer Sundays.
It really has been the next best thing to being there for me.
If you are interested visit The Tablescaper and join in the fun.

I grew up along the sea, in a small town outside of Boston.
It is along Cape Ann and has a rich history but more importantly it is filled with
wonderful people. It hasn't changed much in the many years since I moved away.
That in itself is a treat for me and my family each time we return.

I like to think that I go to the sea to find the best in me.
The sea has a way of doing that.  It brings you in and sweeps you along.
Walking the beach, collecting shells, swimming, boating, fishing..
you always feel like the best is yet to be.

Along Cape Ann, artists thrive in summer. 
Everything falls into perfect pitch.
There is no better time to live a creative life. 
Whether it be artists or writers...the sea has a way of 
helping one to define themselves.

    I created this blog on a painting which I called
the painting served as a reminder of my 
childhood by the sea.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow inspired me with
Often I think of the beautiful town
That is seated by the sea;
Often in thought go up and down
The pleasant streets of that dear old town,
And my youth comes back to me.
My grandmother and me
on a porch along the sea

With that...I say 
Hooray for

Next week 4th of July celebrations in the little town by the sea
more on that next week :)

image 1, 2-7~me, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12~me, 13, 14~me

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Friday, June 25, 2010

Think Pink and Retreat!

"Ahhh" by Jerri Finch

It has been a long week and I have decided today is the perfect day to retreat. 
I am throwing up the proverbial pink flag and saying "ah, ah, no way, I am staying put".

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Helping Mother

'Helping Mother'
Painted by
Jessie Wilcox Smith (1853-1919)

 This little girl looks just like my Miss Claire (child #3) did at the same age. 
All curls and as cute as a button. 
She is just shy of 17 and still as cute as a button and as of yesterday is officially on 'summer vacation'. 
Vacation is great but can be exhausting for Mom. 
I haven't told her yet but Mom has a few things on her list for Miss Claire to accomplish this summer.
'The List'
-Learn how to cook a complete meal by herself.
- Learn how properly stack and run the dishwasher.
-Learn how to sort and run the laundry machine and dryer.
-Learn how to properly iron clothes.
-Learn how to mend her own clothes.
-Learn how to get her doona (duvet) into her doona cover.
-Learn to take the initiative to do all of the above without being asked!
Of course, with all this comes self satisfaction for her.
Oh yes, she also has to learn how to drive a car :)

Am I being a taskmaster???
Should I calm the Virgo in me?

Did I mention that I own this too?
PS...Thank you to everyone who commented on my 
'Shoeless in England' post. All I can say is wow!
So many fantastic suggestions. I am going to write a post on your suggestions.
Stay tuned....

Images 1, 2~me, 3, 4

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Shoeless in England

Dear Readers,

I am frustrated and need your help.  

It is my feet...they are desperate for new shoes.

The thing about shoes is that I just don't get it. I am not one of the anointed, one of the lucky ones that was touched by the shoe fairy. 

Yes, I admit it. I have serious shoe envy. 

I just returned from a day at the shops...another outing, wandering the streets forlornly looking at shoes wishing that at least one pair would scream out....'pick me, pick me'. 

I have friends that are blessed with shoe sense. They know just what they want....can see it all coming together and find the perfect shoes...every time.  My daughters tease me...they say 'there she goes again, with the Nana look'. Can I help it if I want to be comfortable in my shoes? Is there such a thing as cool, trendy shoes for everyday that are comfortable too? They weren't out there today.

Maybe I am asking too much. I want to be able to spend the day pounding the pavement in the city, wear my city clothes, be comfortable and I do not want to wear sneakers/runners. The tourist look is not an option.

I need a personal shoe shopper. Does such a thing exist?? Someone could make a bundle on this one and I will be the first one to sign up.

Am I the only one who is in shoe despair?  Surely, someone can point me in the right direction. 

What is the secret to buying shoes???

Jessica seems to know...

and Kim...

and Eva...

Ok..I know, they are not in my league and their stylists 
probably do it all but a girl can still dream...yes?

Hmmm..these are cute...what do you think?

Images 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6
PS..there are some great links associated with these images
worth checking out :)

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Summer Sundays and Ina

I am loving this meme about Summer Sundays
A wonderful idea from The Tablescaper.
Thinking about summer is delightful.

There is nothing better than the good food that comes with summer.
In particular, the fruit and vegetables sold at the country roadstand market.
I came across this one in New Hampshire.

The first thing that runs thru my mind 
when I am standing in the midst of all this is Ina Garten
and her cookbook, The Barefoot Contessa

Her recipe for Gazpacho is a family favourite.

 To get that wonderful summer flavour 
you need to find beautiful ripe tomatoes.....

Once you have those in hand you follow these simple instructions:

The Barefoot Contessa
Serves 8-10
2 hothouse cucumbers, halved and seeded, but not peeled.
3 red bell peppers, cored and seeded
8 plum tomatoes
2 red onions
6 garlic cloves, minced
46 ounces tomato juice (6 cups)
1/1/2 cups white wine vinegar
1/2 cup good olive oil
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper

Roughly chop the cucumbers, bell peppers, tomatoes and red onions into 1-inch cubes. Put each vegetable separately into a food processor fitted with a steel blade and pulse until it is coarsely chopped. Do not overprocess!!

After each vegetable is processed, combine then in a large bowl and add the garlic, tomato juice, vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper. Mix well and chill before serving. The longer gazpacho sits, the more the flavour develops.

Notes from Jeanne:
Texture is important, best to chop each vegetable separately...pulse slowly.
When you live overseas and try to follow American recipes it can be a bit of a hassle.
To make things easier for Kiwis and Aussies....
If you live in New Zealand, I suggest the 'Vegie Juice' by Daily Harvest. 
The 'Garden Harvest' with beetroot adds a really nice flavour.
If you live in Australia, I suggest their 'V8' low sodium vegetable juice.
I haven't made it in England yet...I will amend when I do :)

To all this I say Bon Appetit and have a wonderful Summer Sunday!
and Father's Day too!!

Visit here to follow along with Summer Sundays

5, 6, 7, 8, 9

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