Monday, October 29, 2012

Storm day

We closed the shop today.  Good thing becauase I hadn't prepared for Jane's Flowers in the House party.  I spent the morning fussing with the few blossoms I brought home from the shop which are featured on the longest short and easy project of bookshelves in the mantle piece I salvaged a few years ago.  You'd have thought I was installing a wall of built-in bookshelves, it took so long to get it finished.

The problem with creating a new but limited space for books is trying to decide which books should go there.  The books I value the most and read more than once are essays, reference and how-to.  I have chosen a few, but since Violet's enclosure is in my little storage room, I can't get back to my already culled make-shift bookshelf.

As storm news bellowed out of the t.v. I took photos of the flowers I brought to the party.  I moved them around, shot a few close-ups.  The white ranunculus are extraordinary.

This ranunculus was in a mixed bunch of misfits - my favorite kind.

A very grateful thank you to all of Violet's well wishers!  Her new drops arrived today, so I'll be keeping my eye on her eye, hoping for some progress.

I feel truant today:  a little guilty and a little thrilled by getting to stay home.

Stay safe everyone.  Extra good thoughts to Kris at The Dancing Donkey in Upstate New York.  She's almost sure to get a whopping portion of the storm along with her neighbors.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

This is not Violet

It's ZuZu, as some of you may know.  She is the most photogenic rabbit at the shop.  She is not, however, the subject of this post.  Violet has taken center stage among the bunnies.  She has come home with me every night for the last ten days.  She has an ulcer in her left eye that also has glacouma and a cataract.  There will be no recent photos of her here.  Not only is her eye distressed, but she is also moulting.  She would not, if she were human, be pleased to be photographed in her present state. 

We have seen the eye specialist and she will start on special drops  that are being mailed from South Carolina.  There is calicification in her eye which the drops should help dissolve.  If this treatment doesn't help heal the ulcer, she'll have to have her eye removed.  She is also old which could compromise the result of the surgery.  I am happy to report, however, that she has been a lively and adaptable patient.  Even though she hates riding in the car, she has settled on the top of the catalytic converter, in the back of the Element where she stretches out and relaxes, even over the bumps.  

Here she is at her loveliest: a bit fat and soft as velvet.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Willowdale wedding

I've featured Willowdale before.  The last time we were there it was summer and HOT!  Yesterday was mild, cloudy and peak autumn color.

I love driving to Topsfield on Route 1.  As soon as we pass  Danvers and the 95 merge, the road becomes narrower and goes up up and down down with pretty views of the next hill.

Willowdale is the donated Estate of businessman Bradly Palmer and is unlike many of the Estates in Massachusetts.  It's made of fieldstone, has lots of windowpanes, and some beautiful tile work.

Not sure why this is here.  The room goes out to the terrace and doesn't seem to have had any religious function.  The colors in the tiles are beautiful, but the camera picked up a lot of yellow, so the blues aren't as vivid.

Delft tiles in the cake alcove.

Lauren, the Bride was supposed to be married here. I took this through the window.

But because it was raining, she was married here. I love this room.  Big fireplace to the left. Terra Cotta tiles on the floor. Glass celing panes. Old pine trees growing outside the windows.

The colors were purple and lavender.  Lauren collected silver containers throughout the summer.

Lauren wanted big cream dahlias for her bouquet, but last week's freeze put the kabosh on them.  I had to use a smaller variety.  She took it in stride, but I hated to disappoint her.  She was an exceptionally sweet and laid-back bride.

Last, but not least was the Fairy Princess Flower Girl.  Here, she is about to show her shoes to the Father of the Groom.

I missed the shoe reveal: someone walked in front of me just as she was raising her hem.

It took us 35 minutes to drive up there.  It took an hour and a half to get back.  Head of the Charles Weekend and they were all coming into town at 4:30!!

Leaf peeping or bookcase project tomorrow?  Sunny and in the 70s.  Violet has an eye infection so I've been taking her home to administer antibiotic every six hours.  She hates me right now.  I'll take her home again tonight and Monday we go back again to the Vet in Littleton to see if there is improvement.  It's been slow and I'm worried.

Monday, October 15, 2012

All that was left from the Ball

As often happens, I didn't take any photos of a really great wedding.   The ceremony and the reception were at the Larz Anderson Auto Museum in Brookline.

Maggie and Aaron were married inside of the museum.  There was a giant tent for the reception on the lawn where you see the chairs here.

It was cold and windy, but the skies were blue and the air was crisp.  The amazing Lisa Rigby was the photographer and Season to Taste catered the event.

The colors were yellow, grey and navy.  My glass slipper is this collection of  yellow garden roses that were left over.

The roses were grown in Petaluma, CA at Garden Valley Ranch.  Many thanks to Fallon for putting together all the lovely shades of yellow for us.  These are still holding up.  They smell amazing.

Coming up on Friday is a wedding at Willowdale, a favorite venue of mine in Topsfield.  I'll take photos; I promise I will.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

late bloomer

I dragged my feet planting something pretty in the front of the shop this summer.  I finally saw some really pretty mandevilla vine at the market, but waited until the end of the week to hold one and when I went to pick it up the following Monday, all the plants were dehydrated and getting crisp: all the flowers had fallen off except for one that had a few promising tendrils.  The vendor gave it to me for free.

My Portugese neighbor, Renado planted it for me and took charge of its care.  Both of us are waiting for the Big Freeze when we'll have to dig it up.  I've given it to him to winter over and keep.  Look how well he's cared for it.

Saturday, October 6, 2012


Two weddings done today.  Driver and Girls are gone.  Just me , ZuZu, Violet and Petals left listening to the Lumineers and ruminating over the last week.

My beloved IPhone 3Gs was drowned in a bag of bunny kale for a week in the cold chest.   After burying it in a vat of rice, the basics worked, but no more apps.  Just in time for IPhone 5!!!  The only one left in Massachusetts was in Holyoke, a two hour drive.  Off I went in a rain storm out the Mass Pike, arriving at dusk last week.

Apparently the Registry of Motor Vehicles no longer reminds us in the Bay State when our driver's license is about to expire.  What a way to find out mine expired in May of 2012.  One must have a VALID driver's license in order to pick up a previously ordered IPhone and no amount of whining convinced the geeky boy at Apple to give me a pass since I'd just driven 2 hours.  Am I the only person who never looks at her license?

Apple's marketing strategy has always been the scarcity of their new products. I am, however, a slave to Apple. So I stopped whining and asked for a refund and drove home beneath sheets of rain.

If my old IPhone hadn't drowned, I'd have waited, but the Map app wasn't working well and  odd messages kept popping up on my screen.

So I went to my local AT&T store and bought a 4Gs.  It's a great phone.  It takes beautiful photos. Siri set my alarm for this morning.  I have Instagram again and Amazon Kindle.  Think I'll pass on Angry Birds: I'm over it.

The wind is blowing warm right now, but the weather is changing fast.  My last two days off in a row tomorrow and Columbus Day.  I have a mantle project and a donkey to visit and maybe a trip to Maine to pick up the octopus jar waiting for me in Wells.

I guess I'll always be one IPhone behind.  The good news?  My swell phone was only 99.00.
Scarcity can also equal savings.. so there, Apple!