A Little of this and that.....

Thursday, June 30, 2011

More Fun Apron Swaps

I know I said I wasn't going to do it but I did! I just couldn't help myself! My name is Donna and I'm addicted to aprons! I've participated in Val's apron swaps before and they have always been so much fun. I love creating an apron for someone else and thinking of clever tuckins to go along with the theme. I of course love receiving my package too but I kinda think I like making up my package just as much. I always try to find out about the person that I'm secretly making an apron for. So I can see what type of things she likes and dislikes. I will then read her blog if possible and try to get a sense of who she is and what she likes.

I'm also in another apron swap right now that is called The Summer Fun Aloha Swap over at the Flirty Apron Swap website. I should be getting my information in the next day or so as to who I am to make an apron for. I've been thinking about the fabric selection and what kind of apron I would like to make. I have to wait to see the information about what my swap partner likes first to see if it would be something she would like. I've already been looking around getting ideas as to what I want to put in as my little tuck in gifts. Since we have a theme we kind of know at least what types of things to look at.

So in the near future I will be the proud owner of not one but two new aprons made especially for me! Yeah!! I need a bigger closet to store all the aprons I've received from the apron swaps I've already participated in.

I can't wear cute shoes but I definitely can wear cute aprons- and I do!!

Monday, June 20, 2011

A Fun Day by the Bay

My husband and I recently had the opportunity to spend a little one on one time with each other this past Father's Day weekend before the other Father's Day Festivities began. We decided to take a quick little 30 minute drive to Benicia which is a quaint little historic town on our side of the San Francisco Bay along the north bank of the Carquinez Straits. In 1853-1854 Benicia was the state capital for California. The City of Benicia is a picturesque waterfront community with small town charm located in Solano County with Martinez on one side and Vallejo on the other.

In recent years Benicia has had a little town makeover to appeal to more people. There are now many antique shops, restaurants with outdoor seating, the marina and yacht club, parks, a tea house and many old Victorian style homes in addition to it's beaches.

Benicia is such a nice little town to go visit for the day and I love going there whenever I have the chance. Benicia is known for attracting quite a few out-of-town antique and boutique shoppers and those seeking small-town, historic charm. They have wonderful street fairs, farmers' markets, parades and art festivals scheduled through out the year.

The City, rich in tradition, is home to more than forty historic sites. Benicia has an old Aresenal building which was a former United States Army armory. It is now used for a variety of purposes, most notably as live-work spaces for artists. The Arsenal is home to several historic landmark buildings such as The Clock Tower, the Camel Barn, Fire museums, and the Jefferson Street Mansion. Benicia’s history is alive in the buildings, and in the people who inhabit them.

On a clear day you can see across the bay and see either the Carquinez bridge or the Benicia- Martinez bridge.

I love it's old time charm and in particular am quite fond of the little church they have on First Street.

Whether it's an all day trip or just a short visit I love to go to Benicia and plan many more trips there in the future. I love to just stop by for no certain reason and walk around and look at all of the interesting shops or even stop for just a pot of tea and a scone. I know for sure I'll be back in August for their Peddler's Fair and again in September for their Craft Fair.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Old Barns and Homes of North Carolina

I recently had the opportunity to go to North Carolina on a short vacation with my family. We are looking to hopefully relocate there in the near future. These are just a few of the old farm houses and barns that I saw while I was back there on my trip.

I really think that these barns are beautiful each in their own way! I love the patina of the wood and all the different shades and colors that the wood turns to.

I have no idea how old any of these buildings were as I just randomly pulled over and took a few pictures out of my rental car window. Most of these were in the Cary, Selma, Smithfield area which is south of Raleigh.

I love the natural white wash of the old weathered boards. I think that they are so pretty! I love to think about what type of people lived there and made this their home. Was it a large family with plenty of children to help work the land? I like to ponder about what went on in these relics from the past.

I can just imagine when this barn was built. Did they have a barn raising party and invite all the neighbors over to help put the barn up? Maybe afterwards they had a big potluck on the grounds with all the workers and the neighbors coming over to help.

This house even had a boat that came with it. Maybe it could be my vacation home!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Beautiful Old Fashioned Flowers

I am so in love with these peonies. I don't know if I can grow them where I live or not, but I really want to try and grow some of these in my garden. I think they look so lovely and they look so romantic. I think I would prefer these even over roses!

I saw these when I was on vacation in North Carolina and I absolutely loved them. I think I have always been fond of peonies but there was something about seeing those lovely pink blooms that spoke to my heart. I know they are an old fashioned flower but I think they are exquisite still!

I also love these Hollyhocks. These were growing in a yard of an old farmhouse not to far from my house. I was out driving with my mother and saw these and had to turn the car around so I could snap a picture. I wanted to make sure I could remember what they were so I could have hubby look for some for me the next time he was at the hardware store.

He was able to find them in seed form but not as an actual plant. I'll have to try my hand at growing them from seeds. It says they take 4 months to bloom. He bought me two different varieties. One is called the Summer Carnival Mix Hollhock and the other is they Country Romance Mix Hollyhock. The summer Carnival Mix ones kind of look like a bunch of ranolculus on a stem.