19 June 2010


Lush and red two months later than they have any right to be, these peonies were found by moi at the farmers market earlier this morning. I had gone expressly to find red flowers; I secretly was hoping for poppies. But then I spied these peonies, and I scolded myself for have ever wanting anything else.

The seller and her granddaughter proffered all sorts of wild and lovely flowers at their stand. A buyer smilingly asked the granddaughter if she were selling any fairies that morning. And a gentleman buyer, who evidently knew the family, asked of the child, "Why are you still you? Why haven't you changed into something else?" She had laughed at both.

But I won over the grandmother, asking for the red peonies. She smiled at me, a real smile, not a for-the-customer mechanism, and said the red ones were her favorite, too.

So now they reside upon our table.

I had feared putting my black-painted table and chairs in the very yellow dining room. Would they look like a giant bumblebee, and would Belle therefore refuse to ever sit and eat with us? But when I got the furniture all in, the combination reminded me of a French bistro, so that's what I'm going for with the blue-and-cream ticking and linen napkins.

I shan't use white bistro ware, but continue with my peacocks. I want to keep this slightly unexpected.

05 June 2010

la W.C.

As I (mostly) complete rooms, I will post the corresponding visual documentation. These are of the upstairs water-closet, now sporting linens made in Portugal and scooped up by 'Cole on sale at Anthro this morning.

Claw-foot tub will also get one of these:

Les jardin.

After a few good Virginia thunderstorms, the green in my (!!!) backyard is unfolding into color.

The lavender I went into raptures over on closing day.

My hydrangea blooms are funny things. You'd think those large, round clusters would be showy, but they're actually sort of shy, hiding in amongst large leaves. I had to move several aside to get this picture.

I'm not sure what this guy is called, but he's sociable, as his tendrils are trying to come inside the porch for a glass of sweet tea.

Again, don't know this bush's name, but the flowers remind me of the kind that live on the sand dunes of Sullivan's Island. I know they can't be the same --- what semi-tropical flower of coastal South Carolina could thrive in the temperate, chilly climate of the foothills of the Blue Ridge? --- but I like to pretend they are. It feels more like home.

* Can anyone tell me the proper names of my two mystery plants? I'll give you a glass of sweet tea on the back porch if you do!

* I feel like an accessory to murder. Our kind Realtor had given Akash and I a lovely, flowering basket of petunias, and after a few days of it thirsting on the front porch, I told A. to put it out on the walk during a rainstorm.

I had completely forgotten a sparrow had been nesting in its depths. The poor bird's home is now a soggy, brown mess. If there were any eggs ... but I can't bring myself to ascertain.

* I got up at 7 this morning and mowed the lawn. (I felt like my dad, getting the lawn done before it gets too hot. I even wore tube socks with my shorts. I liked it.) We bought an 18-inch Reel Mower, and I'm so glad we did. I'm not a gym kind of girl, so pushing this mower around for half an hour is good for my bony arms. It doesn't use any electricity or gas and has zero emissions, so I feel all smug about my carbon footprint. (This smugness will dissipate with the to-go cup of coffee I will inevitably buy on Monday because I will have gotten up too late to use the new espresso machine my family bought us as a house-warming gift.)