Ten Gables Cottage

Ten Gables Cottage
Ten Gables Cottage

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Beautiful Tropical Garden

Hi Everyone, Recently I went to a very lovely garden near my home called Heathcote Botanical Garden.
It has undergone a good bit of change in the past year or so and I was totally amazed at some of the outstanding displays. I love to go there and paint with other area artists. The garden used to have a special day set aside for artists but now they tell me that any time you want to go there and paint, you are welcome. I must go there soon and spend a day painting.

So, today, I will show you a few of the plants and features there and later this week, I will post more because I took many, many photos! I don't know the names of most of the plants, but the one above is some type of bromeliad.

The above tree is a "monkey no climb" tree! Notice all the sharp things sticking out on the trunk.

Here is another bromeliad growing inside a tree trunk.

A nice water feature has been added and the sound of the water was so soothing. There are plenty of benches in the garden where one can sit and enjoy the sights and sounds.
A beautiful tropical bloom

My favorite color for any flower is purple! I adore this bromeliad because the red and purple together is just stunning and also the shape of the flower.
This one was just breath-taking. A bit of color among all the greens of the landscape. More to come later.

Friday, February 22, 2013

What's new at Rustic Star Antiques?

Hello Everyone, Friday!! And a beautiful, warm, sunny, Spring-like day in Florida.
I went down to the Rustic Star Antiques and More shop, where I have a booth and took some photos to show you what is going on there. The owner is re-purposing lots of interesting pieces of furniture and making some unusual things for the home. As you can see, right in the foreground of the above photo, she has painted a ladder coral/pink and although it doesn't show in this view, she has some black stenciled lace on it here and there! A lady's step ladder!  

Melinda, the owner, does a lot of bead work; you can see a sample on the blue vase here.

The above old pitcher and bowl  has a nipped spout, so it has been fitted with a pretty lily in the pitcher and some shamrock in the bowl. I love this idea! Plants put into antiques are best sellers at Rustic Star Antiques and More!
One of my favorite things to do is to put a pretty specimen flower in a little clear glass bottle...maybe a whole roll of them in a window sill and Rustic Star has many from which to choose!

Who is this attractive lady? She is the store mascot, Sally, who is married to Harry, below. At the moment, they aren't speaking, so they are in different sections of the shop. Sally is thinking about a possible trip to the beach, while Harry is probably wondering about the next meal! His poor hand looks like he wants a hand out! Looks like it needs to be turned over and placed on his knee! They are too funny!

Melinda's father laughingly says they are his "freeze-dried parents". This gets a few laughs and actually worries some people!

On to a more pleasant subject, the above photo shows the top of an oriental hutch that Melinda painted aqua in a shabby chic style. It is really gorgeous. Painted furniture is another big seller. White painted furniture is still big, but color is coming into its' own.

I'll bet you can't guess what this round ball of a thing is? Give up?
Well it is a light globe made from a Camel's bladder!It is hand painted and you can see where a bit of paint is flaking off. Imported, or course, and quite a few years back, this is certainly a conversation piece. It is in my booth and do you know how I know it is a Camel's bladder? I had a gift shop in 1980 here and I sold this very one then. I happened to acquire it back after the owner got tired of it, so here it is again for sale, but at a lower price than before!

The above cute tea cart is in my booth, a perfect cart to use for tea on the patio! I've got it pretty well loaded with various items as you can see.

Here is another of Melinda's creations. She calls it the Brothel Chair! But seriously, it would be a conversation piece, as well, in a ladies bedroom or dressing room. Very chic!
This photo was taken in front of the shop....see how sunny it is here! Behind the chair is a bird feeder made of stacked and glued pieces. See the clear glass lamp part with a tray and a bowl glued on top. Makes a cute garden piece.
I just had to show you my bougainvillea between the studio and garage. It is so gorgeous! I'm out to garden now. Have a great day and a fab week-end!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Little Rag Baskets....

Hi Everyone,  We have actually been having cold weather in Florida! So at night I am all bundled up relaxing and making mini rag baskets! They are so cute! What do you think?

They are made by wrapping clothesline rope with strips of left over fabrics from other projects. I belong to a quilting group, so the ladies have supplied me with lots of scraps for this purpose! 

I like doing hand work at night while watching T.V, and after having painted with watercolor or acrylics most of the day, it is my relaxation therapy! The above photo shows how small they are...just perfect for a few pieces of candy.

At the quilting group, we work all year toward our bazaar, which is held in November. I think these mini baskets will be a good seller, hopefully.

I may also make a few for friends for Easter and tie a little bow on the side and add some Easter sweets.
Or one could use them as little May day baskets with a few tiny flowers placed in them. Whoever received one on her door knob would have to put the flowers in water soon, as of course these can't hold water! 
Or even the basket itself can be a gift and the receiver can use it however she wants. I hope to find some larger rope and make some big rag baskets. If you want to make some, just type in" making rag baskets"and click on a search icon and you will find lots of different ways to make rag baskets.I saw many ways to make them on the net! Happy crafting!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day!

Hi Everyone, I hope you had a happy and lovely Valentine's Day! I did! Some of my best friends got together for a tea luncheon. We all brought something and went to one friend's house. It is really unusual because it is not a house she lives in, but a house she plays in!!And believe me, we are all grown women and some of us are even old women!Of course this friend is not old and she is quite the decorator, too. I will call her Lady Hostess in this blog. Lady Hostess gave me the above handmade card, in fact.

I was really in a party mood when I left my house because my true love had given me these gorgeous roses as well as a Pug Puppy. Not a real one, mind you, but a cute stuffed one that will not chew on our slippers! I thought that was extremely thoughtful and romantic, so I skipped away to Lady Hostess's home as happy as could be.

Upon arriving I found my buddy Happy Helen and her sister Little Miss Kentucky, already there. My sidekick, Miss Beth, arrived bearing her famous chicken curry sandwiches on croissants . I had made the popular veggie pizza, which is canned crescent rolls spread out on a cookie sheet, topped with cream cheese mixed with dry Ranch dressing  and then topped again with chopped mixed raw veggies. Happy Helen and LMK brought desserts.....chess squares topped with fresh homegrown strawberries from Happy Helen's garden and a strawberry trifle. I forgot to mention that Miss Beth also brought a delightful salad of mixed greens, strawberry slices, dried cranberries, sliced almonds and feta cheese with raspberry vinaigrette. Oh, My. We could have called it a Strawberry Tea. In fact, I did make my renowned Strawberry Tea.

You simply must try it! It is made as follows:: Pour 2 cans of strawberry/kiwi nectar into a big pot. Add 2 quarts of boiling water. Add strawberry cool-aid (enough to make 2 quarts). Put 6 tea bags in. I use Nambarri tea from Northern Ireland, but you can try Red Rose tea. I wouldn't waste my time with Lipton, as it is suitable only for iced tea, in my humble opinion. Anyway.  That is it, steep your tea and remove bags. Pour hot water in your teapot to temper it and fill with strawberry tea. The secret ingredient is the cool aid. Everyone in this town requests me to make it. I used to mash up real strawberries and strain, etc, etc. until I decided to create a simpler recipe. It really is delicious!
I gave all my friends a heart to keep and of course Lady Hostess presented each of us beautiful gifts to take home. I got a lovely heart necklace and a box of candy and my very favorite was a pair of lips attached to a sucker!! Well, it is time to cook my hubby a bite to eat. It has rained here all day and we really need it. So we are staying home tonight and  will enjoy listening to the rain all cozy and dry inside! Also, thanks everyone who sent us such pretty cards and treats....you know who you are. Happy Valentine's Day to everyone.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Roses blooming now and Arugula flowering

Hello everyone, I have added some new roses to my rose garden and thought I'd show you the colors. I love the one above...it is almost lavender.

Pink in any shade is always lovely!

And this Sonya colored one or coral colored is really nice.

Now, what in the world happened here you might ask! My Arugula lettuce got so big and I just let it go and now it is flowering. It actually looks really pretty flowering and I hate to pull it up! I am getting ready to transform my veg garden into a flower garden for the Spring and Summer, so I think I will leave it awhile. The white blooms are really quite nice! Happy
Gardening to you!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Good ole Country Cookin'

Hi Everyone, It is absolutely glorious weather in South Florida! A good time to harvest our winter gardens! My friend, Helen, came by the other day with white half runner beans already broken up, ready for me to cook. Now that is a friend indeed! Here they are simmering and ready for me to turn the heat up a bit and boil down the juices a little as they get tender. Later I peeled some potatoes and cut in big chunks to add. This was some good eating!

Not only did she bring green beans, but she brought some beautiful Collard Greens and also some Mustard Greens. Here are the Collards as they begin to cook.

Beautiful and not a bit of insect damage, no pesticides, all organic. She said that they plant marigolds and garlic next to them and never have a problem with any insects. 
I don't have a photo of after they were finished cooking, because I was too busy eating them! We really enjoyed that lovely gift from Helen's garden. Winter has been mild here and I would be surprised if we have any more really cold weather and I am almost certain nothing below freezing. It is now time to plant a summer garden. In Florida, we try to plant before Feb. 16 so that harvest is completed before the hottest weather comes. Basically we can grow veggies all year, though. Hope your weather is getting nice and warm where ever you live and you are making plans for your garden.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Big Quilt Show in Sebring, Fl

Hi Everyone and welcome to my blog! It has been a beautiful day in Florida and my quilt group from church took a little trip to Sebring, Florida to the Highland Quilters  big quilt show. There were dozens of gorgeous quilts and many vendors selling quilting wares. We had a great time and came back with lots of ideas and also some neat supplies. So below are some of the quilts we saw.

Well, I think I have the above quilt pictured sideways, but anyway, you can see how intricate the applique is. You can click on any of these photos for a closer view. This one won a ribbon. I think it was machine quilting and done very well. I am partial to hand quilting, but if machine quilting is well done, then it is just o.k to me. I really prefer hand quilting, though.
Here is a special wall-hanging with a 3-D effect. It, too won a ribbon.

More beautiful applique!

Just look at all the small pieces in this bright and cheerful quilt!

I was so impressed by this mini quilt. It was part of a group done for a challenge to use a photograph and translate it into a pieced quilt. Be sure to click on this for a closer view. It was outstanding in my opinion!

Another sideways view. Sorry! You get the idea, though, and don't you just love the pastels in this one!

Check out this close up of an appliqued quilt, all hand done! Love it!

A beautiful colorful quilt with lots of interest.

This wall hanging would be so pretty in a coffee shop or tea room. Or even in your own little tea nook!
A beautiful flower garden quilt. I love all those little pieces and the colors in this one are stunning.
Lastly, here is a close up of a turtle appliqued on a block. A very bright pretty quilt for a child.
Are you as inspired as I am?