"Gather ye rose-buds while ye may." Robert Herrick

"Gather ye rose-buds while ye may." Robert Herrick

Hello Friends!

Friends, Romans, countrymen...y'all. Foodies, gardeners, artists and collectors - let's gather together to share and possibly learn a thing or two in the mix.

Donna Baker

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Only Twenty Six More Days Till Christmas

Oh thank goodness our half of the state had only rain.  My sister's half had ice and are without power.     Going to mingle with the throngs of Christmas shoppers today.  Wish me luck!

Friday, November 27, 2015

Twas The Day Before Thanksgiving


when all through the house not a creature was stirring except for a [SNAKE?]

Let me just cut to the chase.  The universe was conspiring to kill me.  

Went about the business of readying the city house for the family holiday and our first Thanksgiving here.  My new baby blue modern love seat arrived at the store and I went to get it in my pick up truck (free shipping that way.)  My son went with me, we loaded it up and took it home.  Just a huge box and the love seat.  No padding or protection of any kind: a thin cardboard box and love seat???  Unbelievable. This love seat is a piece of crap and made in China.  It looks good, but the quality is poor.  It has a  raw, ragged 1/4 inch edge of fabric that they then stapled to the couch.  No, they couldn't roll the hem over a couple of times before they stapled it, and I fear it will shred or pull out before too long. We had to pull back the underside to find the legs and the woodwork looks like pieces of particle board, not long pieces of hardwood. And, this wasn't a cheap love seat.  I'd have paid $250. for it but not the amount I did pay.  So, I'll have to box it up and return it myself.  Only problem is, there is a howling wind and deluge outside and will be for the next several days.  Who gets 9 inches of rain this time of year without a tropical storm?  High is near freezing today and possible icing warnings.

Okay, this is getting too long already.  Let me just say, while waiting for the trucking company to deliver my bed, I started to prepare the pies.  I looked at the oven, and what in the world did I spy?  An oven like I'd never seen before.  A convection oven.  I've heard of them but haven't a clue how they work or how to use one.  So, I have to get out booklets left by the owner and start reading the schematics.... (my least favorite thing to do in the world).  I'd rather have a root canal.  That, and I told you I've never cooked on an electric cooktop and the dials were Greek to me.

In a nutshell (I can't seem to keep this brief), they delivered the wrong bed: the deliverers said [Senora, we can't do nothing about this.  We just deliver and set up and you have to call company.] The calling began...  They'll call back within 72 business hours.  And, I saw on their website today there is a 25% black Friday sale on everything today. I am thinking (no I am unless they give it to me half off) of sending it back instead of exchanging it for the ivory one I ordered, not the gray one they sent.

After that, a snake was in the dining area of my kitchen. Deep breaths.  Haven't a clue how it got in.  Didn't know if it was a viper or not so wasn't going to chance it and had to kill it.

I unwrapped the new bedding for my wrong bed(that I agonized over) and no shams included.   What?  This wasn't a custom made set.  So, I had to return to the store.  Oh, no, those weren't included.  Have to buy the shams one piece at a time.  Nearly as much as the bed covering I might add.  Okay. Deep breathe. Get them home and one will not unzip no matter what I tried.  I will have to fight the crowds to return it.  Grrrr.  I couldn't even find an alcoholic beverage in the house.  I rarely drink, but would have if I could have found some.

There is more but this is getting too lengthy and I'm sure you don't want to hear about all of the dark comedic happenings. Needless to say, I'm not even going to break this wishbone as I am certain I will come up with the short end.  What ever!

Thursday, November 26, 2015

610 Stompers vs. New York - "Bitter Sweet Symphony"

Just in case you missed them in today's Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, here is their last foray at the parade.

"Ordinary men doing extraordinary moves," the 610 Stompers have been stomping their way into hearts for several years.  Everyday men, doctors, lawyers, garbage collectors all dancing at events across the nation.  Hailing from New Orleans, in their 70's polyester outfits, headbands and gold lame sneakers, they are hilarious.  Watch some of their different dances on youtube.  Their facial expressions alone are worth it.

And, their team supports many charities.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Paint On A Canvas

I finished the palette knife impasto oil painting.  I really enjoyed doing it.  It was a completely different style for me.  I always know when I'm finished with a piece.  It isn't something I can explain.  Just know.  But then again, I can go back another time and change something if I want (and I can see some things 'I want'.)

The name of the painting is Lipstick On Her Reefer.  Don't be shocked.  I was a hippie once.  The title comes from a Laura Nyro song (one of two of my all time favorite singer/songwriters.)  One of the lyrics "lipstick on her reefer," is from the song Blackpatch.  

Haven't had time to work on anything since the sale/purchase of houses and my husband's illnesses et al.  Hopefully, soon, I can move all my art supplies to the new house.  An empty room is waiting.  I have many things I want to work on, including some very large canvasses. 

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

She's In The House

The last few flowers and roses are in bloom.  For a couple of days that is, before a hard freeze arrives. I've put most of the plants and the outside of the house to bed for the winter.  

I finished unpacking yesterday.  Got a few things hung on the walls, but mostly still have it to do.  I had to return to the farm, but will pack some more things to take to the city house.  

We will celebrate our first Thanksgiving next week at the city house.  Though I will have to make most of the food at the farm and transport it to the city, we will have a wonderful time.  The kids and grandkids love the new house, as do I.  I still haven't figured out how to do many of the switches, knobs etc. I keep having to call the former owner to ask how to do things.  The shower in the master bath looks like something out of Star Trek.  Who needs seven shower heads? We don't have things like that at the farm.

And, I have never cooked on an electric cooktop.  I'm thinking burned! Thanksgiving, here we come.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Bed In A Teapot

Well, this is the last time you'll hear me whining about that bed.  I remembered my stash I keep in this chintz teapot.  Though I must have been dipping into it a lot, (told you I can't remember anything) it is going for my bed.  That, and I had two ladies that just left who took me to the cleaners on some of the antiques I have been wanting to get rid of.  They have a store and wanted to pay pennies on the dollar, but it was a chance to get rid of stuff and get my bed.  A twofer and a new bed to boot.  So done deal.  Yippee! 

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Just A Folly

I am decorating my new city bedroom in country French.  I have looked high and low for a French caned bed.  I have found very few and the ones I have discovered are all very expensive.  Some are antiques and even more expensive than the reproductions.

I finally found this one at Anthropologie.  It is ivory with a fully carved swag of cabbage roses though this photo doesn't show the detail well.   It is the one I want - it is also expensive in my book. 

I don't buy jewelry or baubles that would cost as much.  Other than sunglasses and the occasional handbag, I don't spend much on clothes.  I guess I am trying to justify purchasing it.
My husband would just die and it would even be stressful for me buying it as I guess I am just plain cheap.  I don't like to pay retail without a discount.  I guess buyer's remorse would be the more appropriate phrase.  Oh, and I  forgot to mention I need a new dining room table and chairs and wood floors.  Those alone will wipe me out.  Since I haven't moved in such a long time, I hadn't thought about how my old furniture wouldn't go with the new house.  The former owner had a very formal style of decorating.  Me, not.  The first thing to come down were the curtains and swags she left behind.  Deep blues and green and burgundy.  I'm more whites and creams and pastels.

I'll let you know if I get up the nerve to buy it.  Perhaps if I wait long enough I'll forget about it.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015


A few posts back I said I wasn't sure how to tell when my pomegranates were ripe.  Well, I got back to the farm this week and I think I found out how to tell.  Make a note, harvest pomegranates in mid October from now on.  They were whoppers, very heavy with juice and the nectar is sweeter than I remembered.  The juice in stores doesn't compare to the taste of these.
Logee's Tropical Plants out of CT (can't seem to get the spelling right) is where I purchased my plant.  Though I overwinter it in the greenhouse, all the leaves fall off and then starts leafing out in early spring.  You too can grow them.  I tore into the one in front. It's a great thing.