Summer of 2020

This summer with the Corona virus and the Black Lives Matter riots and all, it’s not been normal times. To lift spirits and make each day as pleasant as possible, I like to have little simple pleasures here and there. I saw a 6-pack of colorful summer flowers for only $1.99 at a local Walmart. I had some cute planters at home that I dug out and these inexpensive flowers make me smile.

Then that very same day I was driving home on a country road that follows the Connecticut River and there was a farm stand that had herbs and flowers for sale by the road. I stopped and was going to buy a Marigold plant. It was self service and the sign said $3.00 for a 3″ pot. So I just picked up one Marigold and I only had a 5 dollar bill and was going to leave that and was headed for my car. The owners happened to be out there and the man said “can I help you?”. Then he said that he could give me more for the $5.00. He then proceeded to put together a ton of Marigolds and handed them to me. I was stunned and couldn’t stop smiling all the way home.

I like Nantucket style and somewhere I came across the above. The lipstick color is called “Sunset”. The bag is from L L Bean. I always wanted to get one like that with my initials monogrammed on it. Then the straw hat is so old fashioned and I love it. The striped nautical top is so summery and I love it as well as the skirt and blouse. The sweater is sold out on J Crew, but I love the style.

A farm porch with a swing is not what I can enjoy this summer, but it’s always in my thoughts.

The above Yankee Barn Cottage is one that caught my eye years and years ago. I still love it. The farm porch reminds me of my Grandparents farm porch. This one is a modular and goes up fast and even has open beams, a screened in porch on the back and a balcony from the second floor loft.

I asked Yankee Barn homes where the home in the photos was and they said that it is in Connecticut. Wouldn’t you know. But Yankee Barn homes office is in New Hampshire near Lake Sunapee. This one is my personal favorite home plan. They have all kinds of beautiful Yankee barn homes plans. Probably it will be awhile before they can build again. Just like everything.

Can’t go out to restaurants anymore lately so I’ve been having fun trying out recipes. I found a keeper recipe for Macaroni and Cheese. So easy to make and you can’t mess it up.

Wouldn’t it be fun to be able to make brick oven pizza in your own brick oven. Wowso!

I lost my Mom awhile back. The worst part is I never got to say good by to her. It hurt me worse then any hurt I ever went through. And I have been through some hard times in my life. I went to the grave where her and my Dad are and on my way home the radio came out with Martina McBride’s “In my Daughters Eyes”. Well my eyes sure filled up with tears.

My Mom and Gram always liked tea. I always wished that I could have had tea in the garden with a table like above at my place. I never had a place like that and time just goes by like a blink of the eye. You can’t go back in time.

My Mom loved butterflies and she would have loved the above tea set. I bought it recently from Macy’s on line. It was on sale and I couldn’t resist it. I guess that I am a lot like my Mom. She loved dish sets and clothes.

A few weeks ago the Vermont Green Mountain Boys flew their F35 jets over honoring front-line Covid-19 first responders and essential workers. So awesome.

King Arthur Flour had about 10 online baking classes with Gesine Prado Bullock and Jeffrey from King Arthur Flour. A lot of bread classes. Today at 2:00 PM they are showing how to make pretzels and a fancy dessert.

The Woodstock Inn has cooking classes on line for old fashioned recipes from the Billings Farm in Woodstock. They also had fitness exercise classes on line from their Fitness place because they were closed because of the virus.

And that has been the start of the summer of 2020.

Old Fashion Design Ideas


The above cottage style house is a design that warms my heart. The picket fence, the arbor and winding path to the front porch makes a cute little haven. Then the cottage style flowers everywhere. It’s not a huge house, so taxes would not be overly high. Plus it would be easy to heat or to make cool. Kind of perfect for baby boomers that want to downsize or for a starter home.

I like the above style with the bay window and the cobblestone walk to the front porch. Then the window boxes and picket fence. Plus the Cape style.

The above open beam style with cathedral ceilings and the field-stone corner fireplace with the french doors leading to a deck is a beautiful design in my opinion.

Climbing roses everywhere is so beautiful.

The above over-sized chair and ottoman is perfect to read in or to journal. I love the style of it.

I love the above breakfast nook off of the kitchen. The white round table and round rug fit perfectly with the bay window with window seats.

I like the design of the above house. The Nantucket grey color and the cobblestone walk with the picket fence to start with. Then the window box and the window style is really nice.

I like the above straw bag and the neat hooks to hang it on. So handy to have to carry to the Farmers Market. The Nantucket basket for eggs is a cute idea also.

Hollyhocks are an old fashioned flower and I just love them for a cottage garden.

Hollyhocks just remind me of Nantucket Island where you go back in time 30 miles out to sea.

The above little white wicker garden house always reminds me of designs that are old fashioned and I love them.

White Hydrangas in a secret garden are just beautiful.

The above kitchen design is a Martha Stewart kitchen that can be bought at the Home Depot. I loved this kitchen from the first time that I ever saw it.

I would add a double wall oven and a pantry.

A waterfall is always fun to build and have goldfish and water plants in.

The above French style kitchen garden is a design that I have always loved.

And that is a few of the ideas that I have come across that always stuck in my mind over the years.

June 2020


June is a month that is the beginning of summer.  Tomorrow is going to be a good day to have a cup of tea and read a good book because they are predicting a thunderstorm.

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There is an amazing Produce box that is available in a town called Chester near where I live and I bought one last week.  It costs $25.00 and it is worth way more then that.  I have had so much fun finding recipes to use the produce.


The baby spinach and strawberries were so good in a salad.  Just delightful.

avocado quinoa power salad

Then someone on the facebook group page that they have posted a recipe for an Avocado Quinoa Power Salad that sounded really good and you could use up some of the huge bag of baby spinach that was in the produce box.


I love the idea of Avocado toast to use up some of the Avocados that were in the box.  The Sparkling Lemon Water was one of my favorites.  Then the rainbow carrots and the rainbow cherry tomatoes were a treat.

I found recipes for Grilled Pineapple, Eggplant Parmesan, Southern Green Beans, French Onion Soup, Spinach Quiche with Swiss Cheese and bacon to name a few of the recipes to use the Produce.


Then the Group that has the Produce boxes had an art contest and the above was one of the winners.  So fun and the town of Chester that originated the group is just a beautiful Vermont town.


I found the cutest plants from the Walmart.  There were about 6 plants in a flat for $1.99.


The plants were perfect for some little planters that I had at home.  They look really cute in one of my windows and have since blossomed out beautiful since the above photo was taken.


The above is another winner of the art contest in Chester.


The above is a dream piece of land.  To have a house with room for a garden and flowers and that view is just a dream.


The above are the most adorable little lambs.  They are so cute and almost too cute to be real.

chair pad

I like the above chair style and the cushion is from Vermont Country Store.  The material matches a table cloth that the store has.  I have the tablecloth in blue and would love that cushion in blue.  So Vermont.


The Iris’s are out now and they are just so beautiful.


You see a lot of painted stones around lately and I think they are neat.  Michaels Crafts had the above ideas and they sell the Crayola paint to make the patterns on stone.



I haven’t been writing on my blog so much lately, but it always makes me happy when I get in the mood to blog.  It really is fun.  Take care all and stay safe.


St Patrick’s day is this month and everything is Irish and green on the 17th. I like how they have Irish Soda Bread in the grocery bakeries. Then the jade color dinnerware is fun to collect.

I like the jade color salt and pepper shakers that the Pioneer Woman has at the Walmart. They are less then $7.00 for the set and really cute. There is also a matching butter dish and dinnerware.

The above apron is super cute. They have it on QVC home shopper.

Pressure cooker corned beef and cabbage is an Irish tradition. I pinned a couple of Instant Pot as well as Crock pot recipes for the corned beef and cabbage recipes on my Pinterest.

Kate Middleton has a style that is classic and also elegant. I like the green shawl that she had a couple of years ago. The color of the shawl is perfect for to wear for St Patrick’s day.

If you like to knit, there is a free pattern on line for a shawl that looks exactly like the Kate Middleton shawl.

There were a couple of the shawls on Etsy that people hand made, but they were quite expensive.

Irish Blessings are neat and four leaf clovers are supposed to bring you luck.

One of my Grandmothers was total Irish. She gave me a ring similar to the one above when I was a teenager. I cherished that ring and it always reminded me of her. The ring disappeared over the years but I found the above ring on JTV home shopper and bought it. I just love it.

I like fancy penmanship. It really is just elegant. My penmanship is just plain with no frills. I love those special pens where you can play with trying to copy frilly writing.

I saw the above cute little captured Irish good luck and thought that it was super cute.

The above sweater was in L L Bean years ago. I loved the looks of it the first time I saw it and thought that it would be perfect to wear on St Patrick’s day. I wish that I had bought it because I don’t see it available anymore.

When I was first married my husband gave me a cameo like the above and the diamond in it was real. I loved that cameo but it is long gone now.

The maple trees are tapped when the days are warmer and the nights are still cold. Real Vermont maple syrup is awesome.

A nice cup of tea is always nice this time of year.

Valentines Day

On Valentine’s day I made a card for Sigurd. I put a lot of thought into it and the inside had photos that personalized it and told him that I loved him and would always love him. I drove about 20 miles or more round trip to get the card and deliver it to his door on Valentines day. He wasn’t home so I had the cutest bag that said “Happy Valentines Day” with hearts on it and I filled the bottom of the bag with Hershey’s kisses and put the card in it and hung it on his door. The photo on the front of the card was taken at Sunapee Harbor where we used to visit once in awhile.

Sigurd and I met at a time when we both were kind of in a very emotional and sad time of our lives. This was way back in 1981. I won’t bore anyone with the details, but we have had our ups and downs. We separated about in 2007. Even though apart, we always had each others back.

Sigurd had a stroke a few years ago. He went from the risk taking, completely always in charge, dashing and daring guy that loved to go skiing, biking and working his heart out, to the same risk taking, completely always in charge, dashing and daring guy that had to put aside a lot of things he loved to do.

He sold his business a few months ago. It’s been really hard on him the last couple of years.

I didn’t expect him to remember me on Valentines day. I spent the day alone and felt a little depressed.

I knew I wasn’t going to get any flowers or even a card. So I bought myself some grocery store tulips. They made me smile, anyways. I loved the color of them. My son, out of pity offered to take me to lunch at my favorite restaurant the following Sunday. I declined.

Well, the day after Valentines day there was a knock on my door and there was Sigurd with a dozen beautiful red roses, a card and all. It made me cry because I knew he has been going through a lot lately and he took the time to think of me.

Sigurd and I are both two wounded people. He probably does not want to be like me and I do not want to be like him. Yet I learned a lot from him and he learned a lot from me.

God knows what he is doing when he somehow chooses to make certain people cross our paths in this journey called life.

December Days

Coffee in a Starbucks Christmas blend sounds awesome to me.

Early morning coffee when the sun is just coming up on a frosty morning when it seems the rest of the world is sleeping is an enjoyable time of day.

I love it when you can just dress comfortable and warm for the outfit of the day.

I used to work at Okemo Mountain at one time and back then if you worked there, you got free skiing. I never had time to take advantage of that but I remember we got to tour all the Inns around the area as I worked in reservations and had to know what to recommend when the condos were full. There was one beautiful inn that a young couple owned and the guy there said that the first run down the mountain was free in the morning and he frequently took advantage of that. How fun that must have been.

It’s fun to go for a walk in early winter when there isn’t a ton of snow on the ground. So pretty with new fallen snow.

There is a florist near where I live and you can buy paper white bulbs this time of year and plant them. They are supposed to be good luck for the new year as they blossom right around New Years day if you just put them in water like the above photo.

I like the container in the above photo for the paper whites.

Vermont is known for Maple Syrup and there are so many ideas to use it for.

My favorite maple syrup treat is French Toast.

Also a maple chiffon cake with maple fudge frosting is a favorite. I put that recipe on my Pinterest cake board.

Vermont has lots of rural areas.

It’s really pretty even in the frosty cold.

They have cute ideas like the candy cane door and the frosting loops for roof shingles for a Gingerbread house.

Little Gingerbread men are so cute.

I have the above Christmas cookie cutters that I got at King Arthur Flour last year.

It gets dark so early now but I love it when I go shopping and see the beautiful Christmas lights along the way.

The Vermont Country Store has maple syrup in all kinds of cute containers this time of year.

It’s also fun to make fondue with Vermont Cheddar to have when you have been out in the frosty cold.

The months just go by so fast it seems.

Luxurious Dreams

The above kitchen has everything anyone could want in a kitchen. The double wall oven, the glassed in display case for dishes, the island, plenty of counter space and neat stove top. Plus it has under cabinet lights. It is affordable because it’s in a modular home.

Just right counter-top stove.

Love the built-in hutch.

Then the laundry room. If you have ever had to lug laundry to a laundramat, this room is like a dream come true. A luxury and it comes in the modular home.

And then the beautiful glassed in shower with a rain shower-head. If you have ever had to have a shower curtain that wraps itself on you when you are taking a shower, this luxury is just a dream. And it comes in the modular home.

I like the design of the ceiling and how there is plenty of room in the bedroom.

Plus there is a master bathroom. Another luxury that comes with the modular home.

The Living-room is open concept with lots of light.

There is an option of putting in a second floor or not. You can leave it an unfinished area where 2 rooms could be added.

It even has a neat front porch.

Location is everything and this modular home can be put anywhere you want to put it. After living on the second floor with people under me, beside me and no lawn or garden, this would be the ultimate. Then add a garage for my car. To be able to plant a garden, flowers and to have a lawn and a view.

To me, it’s perfect. Everyone likes what they like. This is what I like. ❤ It was an award winning modular home and I can see why.

I have a friend who is a builder and he is into quality this and quality that. Thick insulation and all top of the line materials. Kitchen cabinets with solid wood and all the top of the line stuff. But I really just like something that looks good and is affordable.

This to me, is everything I like and it doesn’t cost way out of anything affordable. And it sure beats an apartment where you are crowded in like sardines with steep stairs, no laundry, no dishwasher and a view of buildings.

At the moment I am thankful for what I have. But it is fun to dream.

December Days

This year we have been getting quite a bit of snow early. The Farmers Almanac claims that it’s supposed to be a mild winter. Not mild so far.

I love how people decorate with string lights in their yards. The snow can be so pretty.

The shooting star string-lights are just beautiful in my opinion.

I also like white string-lights around a kitchen window. And then light a candle while you are baking.

Waddle, waddle in the snow…….

The above Chalet is almost exactly like a friend of mine had years ago. They could see 3 different mountain ranges from the huge windows in the front. The deck went around 3 sides and it was custom built just the way they wanted it. There was a pond they could see and in the summer it had swans in it. It had open beams and was just beautiful. There was a ski mountain nearby and they were both ski instructors. Plus one was a school teacher. They also owned a chalet on a lake that they custom built with gorgeous sunset views that they built in northern Vermont and they enjoyed traveling to Florida in the winter. They visited Austria sometimes and had quite the life. The guy was a native Vermonter who’s Dad was a builder and his wife was a New Yorker. So quite a team and I always envied them. Quite a different life then what I ever had, but they were one very lucky couple.

I love the middle bridge in Woodstock, Vermont. It’s just pretty any time of the year. If you go through that open gate, there is a bank with steps that go down to a landing and that house has a couple of chairs and a fire-pit that they enjoy in the summer with a view of the river.

This is a view looking out at the river from inside the covered bridge. That river has an Indian name and I can’t spell it. But it’s something like Ottaquechee River.

The above magazine was at the Walmart and I couldn’t resist buying it. The turkey dinner made easy had a mushroom sauce that had white wine in it that the turkey slow cooked in. Then it made a delicious gravy to put over mashed potatoes and over the turkey. Plus it had some really good fix-it and forget-it slow cooker recipes in it.

The highest mountain in Vermont is Mt Mansfield and Stowe has some nice ski trails on that mountain. Vail bought Stowe and also Okemo Mountain ski area recently.

Chocolate fudge is fun to have for the holidays. My brothers used to love it when we were kids. There is a recipe that is no fail that has chocolate chips, evaporated milk and marshmellows in the recipe. I pinned the recipe on my Christmas ideas board on my Pinterest.

King Arthur Flour had Gingerbread cookies and cocoa at their store and bakery on Saturday. I have the snow-globe, the Christmas tree and and the gingerbread man cookie cutters that I got last year from King Arthur Flour and saved the above photo so I could use the ideas to decorate gingerbread cookies. The reindeer is new this year and I have not got that cookie cutter yet.

King Arthur flour has the best cocoa you can find anywhere. And if you ever tried their chocolate chips, you would never use any other brand.

I have all the above cookie cutters that are from King Arthur Flour. I took a class on Blueprint on how to decorate cookies and it’s so easy to do what they call flooding with the special recipe for frosting that really looks nice on Christmas cookies. Then using decorator tools is fun, looks artistic and is very easy to do with a little practice.

I have a sugar cookie recipe that was on an old Land of Lakes butter box from the 1970’s that I really like. But everyone has their own likes and recipes.

My sons always have to get a Christmas tree that is high as the roof in their houses. I just like a small tree myself like the size in the photo above. I can remember when my sons were little and one year we went to this place and cut down our own tree with their father. They had hot, spiced apple cider there and it was just plain fun.

I would love a reading nook like the above photo.

The above is another view of the reading nook. A nice cup of tea and lots of candles. Then the latest holiday magazine. I will never have one like that, but it is a nice idea that I would love.

December is a busy month and can be very stressful. It’s not always an easy time for everyone and especially me. But somehow we all manage to get through it in our own ways with little traditions that have meaning and we always get through the month of December one way or another.

November Days

November days are here and it’s foggy in the morning and most of the trees are bare of leaves and the ground is covered with leaves. Plus it’s mostly in the 40’s and 50’s for temperatures outside.

There is a Vermont Country Store near where I live. There is one in Rockingham and one in Weston. It’s a very fun place to visit. I always like to get some Vermont Cheddar Cheese that they cut fresh off of a huge Cabot Extra Sharp Cheese Wheel. Plus it’s fun to browse through their store. The store is filled to the rafters with all kinds of interesting finds.

Cheesecake is always good and Pumpkin Cheesecake this time of year is really a seasonal treat. Especially when you use gingersnap cookies in the crust. Plus make it fancy by using the rosette attachment in a pastry bag to make whipped cream rosettes around the top.

Easy Chili with all the fixings is a fun lunch this time of year.

Corn muffins go so nice with Chili. I like to make the Jiffy Box Corn Muffins and just add a little honey and sour cream. So easy, fast and just right.

I also like the Cape Cod Salad that is in Barefoot Contessa’s Basics Cook Book. So easy to make and is fun to have in the Fall when there are fresh apples from the orchards. I had some Honey Crisp apples from a local orchard that I peeled and chopped and just used organic power greens, chopped up some cooked bacon, organic walnuts from the Food Co-op and blue cheese crumbles. Then I just used Newmans Olive Oil and Vinegar dressing instead of the Dressing recipe in the book. One of my new Fall favorites for a salad.

Then I love to use my Instant Pot Pressure Cooker and found an Instant Pot Cookbook that was for weight loss using the Instant Pot. One recipe that stood out to me was the Protein Bowl. All the recipe called for was to pressure cook 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts in the steamer basket along with some Quinoa and 1/2 cup of water underneath the chicken on high for 12 minutes. Then put the Quinoa in a bowl with some power greens on top and add the dressing to coat, slice up an avocado and an apple and add the shredded chicken, some walnuts and Montery Jack shredded cheese. Yum! The dressing was just the juice of an orange, 1 T apple cider vinegar, garlic, 1 t olive oil, 2 garlic cloves and 1 T Dijon mustard plus salt and pepper.

The Cookbook is called “Lose Weight with Your Instant Pot” by Audrey Johns. And it had 60 easy recipes for weight loss.

There was also a recipe to make a wrap using shredded chicken that there was a recipe for using 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts with 2 garlic cloves, smashed, 2 T canned diced green chilies and a cup of water. You just cook on high for 20 minutes. Quick release and transfer the chicken to a plate and shred, adding 1/4 cup of the liquid to keep it moist.

On the wrap, it had a dressing that was just 1/3 cup of Greek Yogurt, 1/2 t of salt, 1/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard and they used chopped Romaine lettuce.

They used burrito-size whole wheat tortillas and 1/2 tomato sliced and 2 slices of bacon.

All kinds of interesting recipes in that book and I found it at the Walmart.

There was also an easy Spiced Apple Cider that used Honey Crisp apples.

There is definitely frost on the pumpkin now and it’s really chilly in the mornings.

Fall Days

I can remember when I was a kid and we had a large family with 5 children. We used to go to an apple orchard and pick a bushel of apples at a time in the Fall.

The above is what I buy now. My son has 6 children and they picked a lot of apples from their apple trees last weekend that they have at their camp that they visit on weekends in northern Vermont. My daughter-in-law makes really good apple pies.

There are all kinds of apple pie recipes, but my Mom used to keep it simple. I remember she would use apple pie spice on the sliced apples and dot the thinly sliced apples with butter. Her apple pies were fun to have in the Fall.

A scoop of vanilla ice cream on apple pie is really good.

I had a recipe for Apple Muffins that was really good. There are all kinds of recipes for Apple Muffins and they are all really good.

If you visit an Apple Orchard, you have to get some Apple Cider and some kind of donuts. So good together.

The leaves are already starting to turn color a little bit, but they don’t go into full color until around the first of October. But they already have pumpkins in the Farm Stands.

Pumpkin bread is so easy to make and so good in the Fall. Canned pumpkin is what most recipes call for.

Fall scented candles are so fun to have in the Fall.

It’s always fun to have some kind of Chowder this time of year.

I like the above style for Fall.

There are beautiful sunsets on chilly evenings.

I like the Sunflowers at Farm Stands this time of year and also there are lots of tomatoes.

I saw the above jacket in Zulily for only $24.98. So cozy for Fall.

And every season of the four seasons has it’s pros and cons. I try to look at the positive side of each season. Actually, I love all the four seasons.