If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors
to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with success unexpected in common hours.

~ Henry David Thoreau

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

First picnic of the season

What a glorious day for a picnic...the first of the season.  A simple tablesetting, using everyday china, old cotton tablecloths that have been washed so often they no longer need ironing, and the colors of the season, red, white and blue.

My garden is starting to bloom, mostly in blue.  A few sprigs of Bridal Veil Spirea, some geranium blossoms and blue Centaurea make a last minute centerpiece.  The lighthouse candle holders are a recent Christmas Tree Shop purchase.

It's more of a challenge when one prepares dinner as well as a tablescape.  Tonight our lake neighbors are joining us for a locavore dinner of Coho salmon, fresh from the lake, warm pasta and tomato salad, fresh roasted asparagus from the farm down the road, garlic toast and rhubarb pie.

An incredible sunset tonight....

and finally, the blue hour!!! 
I think ITLLDO.

Please join Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for some amazing tablescapes.  Thank you for hosting this fun party, Tablescape Thursday.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Red White and Blue

Can it be?  Has Summer really arrived on Lake Ontario? 
I'm joining the Style Sisters for Centerpiece Wednesday with my first picnic of the season,a pre-Memorial Day dinner on the deck with  Lake Neighbors.
I picked a few flowers from my garden for a last minute centerpiece and placed two lighthouse lanterns  (Christmas Tree Shop) on each side. 

Simple table, delicious meal, wonderful friends and a great Lake View.
Thanks for stopping by.

Perfectly beautiful Lake Ontario

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Lunch with Girlfriends

Two of my high school girlfriends joined me for lunch a couple of weeks ago, and I actually served food on my first set of dishes purchased after discovering Susan's blog party, Tablescape Thursdays, over at Between Naps on the Porch.  You've seen these dishes before, but I really didn't have many followers back then.

Lunch began with Cream of Asparagus soup, a wonderful recipe I found at StoneGable.  Thank you Yvonne! I followed your recipe and added a hint of cumin which is one of my favorite spices. Yummm!

Next came a fresh salad with Priscilla's dressing...so fresh and light.  One day I will share this recipe.

The entree was a creation of my own and I didn't get a picture of it...grilled portobello mushroom sandwiches (p.mushrooms marinated in homemade Italian dressing, garlic toasted whole grain baguette, slathered with fresh pesto, fire roasted red peppers, provolone cheese and romaine)  I must record that recipe before I forget how to make it!

So here is the dessert....individual lemon souffles with real whipped cream.

A lovely day on the lake with good friends (and Annabelle keeping us company)
placemats ~ Kohl's
napkins ~ TJMaxx
plates, bowls, mugs ~ 222 Fifth ~ Belize from Marshall's
salad plates ~ Pottery Barn clearance years ago
Goblets ~ Christmas Tree Shop
individual teapots ~ Christmas Tree Shop
flatware ~ Gorham Studio (my every day stainless) 
dessert plates ~ vintage (does anyone know what they are?  They were left here in the cottage by previous owners)

Thanks for stopping by ITLLDO.  Now head on over to Susan's Between Naps on the Porch for lots of great tablescapes.  Thanks, Susan, for hosting such a fun blog party ~ Tablescape Thursday.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Coastal Centerpiece

I am very excited to be participating in the new Centerpiece Wednesdays  blog party, hosted by the Style Sisters.  I'm afraid I'm not very creative when it comes to centerpieces, so I am here with my simple coastal elements, more to learn than to promote my own.  I look forward to viewing all of the entries and hopefully some great tutorials.

The elements I used are very simple and inexpensive.  Since our home is on the lake, I love it when I find coastal accents such as the lighthouse and adirondack chair candle holders.  All came from last week's shopping trip to The Christmas Tree Shop.  The fishing net, as well as the sign in the window were previous purchases from Bealls in Florida.

A few shots after dark.....
I really must study the manual for my little PHD (push here dummy) camera. I have way too many reflections from the window... Hope you get the idea though.

I just had to step outside on the deck to capture the sunset.

I welcome your comments and suggestions.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Every Day Dishes and Leftovers

We actually have a hint of a Summer Breeze this afternoon.
The Lake is calm and the sky is clear, promising a lovely sunset tonight.

Fishing boats are starting to show up on a regular basis.

and the purple martins have returned to their house by the lake.

 I was able to salvage a few of my tulips after the big weekend wind storm.

Looks like a perfect evening to invite the neighbors over for an impromptu dinner.
My every day china will work just fine....no fussing tonight.

Some left-over lasagna, reheated in the covered casserole,

a fresh garden salad in chilled bowls,

a glass of Chianti and some freshly grated cheese on the lasagna....

Nothing fancy....just great conversation with wonderful friends, and a Sunset.

I think ITLLDO!

The table is set with my every day china...Maitre d'  by Oneida
Blue rimmed goblets from The Christmas Tree Shop
Every day flatware...Gorham Studio
Placemats and Napkins from Ross
Tulips planted last fall with bulbs from The Christmas Tree Shop

Now, don't forget to visit Susan's wonderful blog, Between Naps on the Porch, for some really super tablescapes.  You'll be glad you did!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Sweet New Shed part II

Spring is teasing its way into Western New York and so I find myself working out in my potting shed.  If you visited a couple of weeks ago, you got a glimpse of the outside from my post "Once upon a time:  the shed".  Click here if you missed it.

Great Big Garage makes a wonderful wind block from cold, cold Lake Ontario.

So this is where I want to be this time of year....Come along my stone path if you please.

We'll just open the door

and take a peek inside.

This little shed is packed full of stuff I think I really need, as well as all of the things I couldn't part with when we moved to the cottage.

My potting bench is on the north wall with a view of the lake (which you can't see in this picture).

Those spaces between the studs allow for such great little shelves by hammering in
 a  few pieces of  2 X 4.

My sign....ITLLDO....... in flowers.

Can you guess what this looked like before the paint job?

You got it....Sterlite shelving units.

I don't know how to do a virtual tour, so I just took pics around the shed.
I found those cute little cubbies under the work bench in sweet old shed, painted them violet and voila!

The flower stand came from Marshall's.  I think I will just put it out on the lane
 when the flowers are blooming in the garden.

The bird house always seemed too nice to put up outside, so it has found a spot in the corner of my shed.

I've had the old table and chairs for years.

My Mom did some painting on them during her last visit.  She also painted the door, and just about everything else in the shed.

Boots, Gloves, and tools are handy just inside the door.

  I can't wait to get back outside to work in my little garden.

The local nurseries were very busy last week with our earlier than usual spring weather.  Unfortunately, there were snowflakes in the air this morning, so I had to bring those tender new plants inside.

It's so cold, in fact, I decided to make some mini greenhouses in hopes that the afternoon sun will warm them enough in these plastic bins to survive the night.  Weather Bug keeps flashing to warn me that there will be a freeze tonight.

Thanks for stopping by.
Now be sure to head on over to Susan's place for some wonderful postings on Metamorphosis Monday at Between Naps on the Porch.