Thursday, April 23, 2009

In Which Two Little Dolls Have a Very Big Idea

Lucy's idea was a hit with Lily Red and although my schedule kept me otherwise occupied, the girls decided to proceed on their very own. As such, they decided to hold a May Day Giveaway! All are welcome to enter by leaving a comment in which a garden favorite is shared. Any additional tips concerning propagation, consumption, or display of your favorite will be taken into careful consideration by Lily Red when planning her own cottage garden this spring. Entries will be accepted through April 30th. Then, on the first of May, one lucky winner will be selected to receive the fabulous. . . .

"Oh dear," said Lily Red, "we've forgotten the most important part! Whatever are we going to give away?"

Not one to be deterred, little Lucy had another idea. "We'll go on a hunt," she exclaimed, "a treasure hunt in the sewing nook to see what we can find!"

Upon reaching their destination they were warmly greeted by the Lilies, Rose and Alice. A better chance meeting could not have occurred! For while perched high on their shelf, day in and day out, much had been observed. Suggestions as to where some "treasure" might be found were eagerly shared.

First, an old sewing box was opened to reveal an assortment of tiny trinkets from buttons and string to a small stash of seed packets. "Hmm, I wonder," thought Lily Red.

When a small ditty bag was located Lily Red peeked inside. "Very interesting," she whispered.

But when a basket chock full of Yo-Yo Flower Pincushions was discovered Lily Red actually danced a happy little jig!

Their pickings were selected and packed up for the journey back to Wayside Cottage.

And so, in the end, it is two very tired little dolls that invite you to participate in their May Day Giveaway in which the lucky winner will receive a fabulous trio of pincushions nestled snugly in a gingham ditty bag along with a tiny packet of morning glory seeds. The very best of luck to everyone!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Wayside Wonders!

It was the most pleasant of spring days and Lucy had the urge to venture out and about. A pop in to Wayside Cottage was always a treat and so her destination was certain. Perhaps Lily Red would put on a pot of tea and whip up a batch of her famous sugared scones. So engaged was Lucy in her daydreams of delightful goodies and good natured gossip that she nearly knocked over her dear friend while passing round what used to be the back of the cottage. Lily Red fought to regain her precarious position atop her ladder in the midst of total disarray. All manners aside Lucy could not help but exclaim aloud, "Whatever have you been up to over here Lily Red?"

"My what a fright you've given me," she responded. "But I'm ever so glad to see you. I'm hanging the last of the wallpaper and am in need of an expert cut to size it up." Quick as a wink Lucy's scissors did their job. It only took a few more minutes to tidy up a bit before they two took themselves outside for a little show and tell. "You see," explained Lily Red, "I decided to add a summer kitchen onto the cottage. And now that the weather has taken a turn for the better I do hope you'll call more often to share a spot of tea with me in it. In fact let's give it a trial run right now!"

A makeshift table was easily put together out of wood scrap. The two gathered round and discussed all the ins and outs of household renovations. "Only a bit of finish work and you'll be done," said Lucy. Lily Red picked up her tiny cup for a final sip. Turning then to Lucy she said, "Yes, Wayside Cottage is far from a jumble now. And in that case I do believe it's time to turn my attention to the garden, or the lack thereof. I can't imagine anything better than to have a patch of veggies and flowers growing out in the dooryard. Have you any recommendations?" Lucy took only a moment before responding. "I can't say I've much farming experience but I do have an idea..."

Saturday, April 4, 2009

An Introduction. . . .

I do believe you've seen this little face before but fear I failed to properly introduce you. Previously referred to as "the family dog," this little moppet is actually named Stormy and more like a fourth child than anything else. Initially he was intended as a pet. . . . three years ago my daughter decorated a brown paper lunch bag with dollar signs, stationed it on the entry table, and informed us she was saving for a dog. For if only she had a dog, a pet of her very own, all would be right with the world! That bag sat there for months. The occasional sympathetic visitor would add a contribution to her meager collection but considering the cost of purchasing a dog is well into the hundreds, she was getting no where fast. The local animal shelters were of little help due to the limited number of breeds we could welcome into a family of full of allergies.

In the end it was Pop and Grandma to the rescue! My mom's persistence and my dad's wallet assisted greatly in the adoption of our newest baby. And I do mean baby! I don't ever remember having a puppy. All of my childhood dogs came from a shelter already potty trained and sleeping through the night. The cutest puppy in the world became a nightmare at sundown. Up every three hours to go out, whimpering every time he saw the crate, and outright barking if you put him in it. Weeks later it was my sleep deprived husband who finally ditched the crate and put the dog in bed with us where the little booger promptly curled up in a ball and slept straight through the night for the first time ever! To this day Stormy's favorite person in the house is my husband, although he minds me well enough considering I'm the one who feeds him and takes him out.

I'm also the one who takes him to the groomers and it was definitely time for a visit! Surprise!

Six hours later and another dent in the wallet and this is what we came home with! We actually prefer the moppet look but he sure smells better this way. . . . and remember where he sleeps! All of that grooming was not in vain, however, for he was invited up to visit my parents with me the next day. He has a special stash of cookie treats there and grandma has a very hard time saying "No!" To work off all those extra calories, his Pop took him for a nice spring walk during which I got a special treat of my own. . . .

. . . . a trip downtown to my favorite store ever! The Alphabet Soup is located at 263 Union Square in Milford, New Hampshire. The town center of Milford is adorable and a hub bub of activity hosting numerous festivals, concerts, and more parades than I can count.

Nothing is better, however, than to step through this door!

There are treasures everywhere and for every season. When I decided to have Christmas in July for my mom's birthday several years ago I headed straight to Alphabet Soup. Sure enough I had my choice of feather trees, advent calendars, and Santa paper dolls. The white drawers lining the walls of the shop are filled with the most beautiful glass ornaments and table linens you can imagine. Birdhouses, garden signs, and antiques are scattered everywhere. The very best surprises for me are always held in this cupboard.
It's always so much fun to meet and greet with Lucy's relatives!

These two little chicks absolutely stole my heart. I love their little dotted kerchiefs and can only imagine the gossip their squawking about.

Before I knew it my time was up and I had to leave to catch the afternoon school bus arrivals back at home. . . . but not before I snatched up two cheery cards for some long distance chums. The colors on them matched quite well with these buttons my mom acquired while out antiquing earlier in the week. They were an extra prize for me to take home. She must have known my supply had dwindled from making so many yo-yo flower pincushions recently. Now I can get back to work and put those buttons to use!

All except for these, that is. They caught my eye immediately since they look as if they were made of jadite. Even next to the real thing I'd never guess they were actually made of plastic. I used to have so much of that stuff , we even used it as our everyday tableware for awhile. Once I had little ones around, however, I quickly learned it was best not to use glass dishes. For those of you serious Fire King collectors out here I'll spare you the tragic details of that story. Needless to say, most surviving pieces were either passed along or sold off as a result but I just couldn't bear to part with this little Scottie. He's a real favorite of mine and stands his ground as a family pet of sorts from the safety of his cabinet shelf.