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Saturday, October 20, 2018

Back Home

And happy to be here.

Lot's of work waiting for me.

It was a very good year.
Every fruit tree is laden.

Canadian Geese never left.
They are gorging themselves on fallen apples and pears. 

Clyde and Lola have decided to get along with the interlopers after all.

Have already filled many shelves in the cellar.

Lakota squash are stored. 

Love them all, flowers and fruit.

Himrod grapes take longer to ripen
Interlaken grapes were harvested before we left for Europe.

A few stragglers left.

I don't think that the little apple tree will make it through the winter.  
We will try and prop it up and see what happens. 
It bears delicious apples.  Don't want to lose it.

Time to admire the evening light and recharge.

Hope you are taking time out to enjoy your surroundings.  



Sunday, October 14, 2018

Every vacation should begin here.

Relais Sant Elena

Just looking at my pictures makes me want to jump on a plane and head for Bibbona in Tuscany.

You may think that you have seen this collage from previous visits. 
But no, 
That is what is so special about Relais Sant Elena.
You can count on it being as good and as special as it was before. 

Beautifully located in a lovely little valley.

And where a most decadent chocolate cake was especially baked for Mr G's birthday. 
It needed no decorations, no candles, no flowers. 
It was beyond sensational. 

Speaking of Mr G. We were celebrating his 84th birthday.  
It was the blintzes he talked about while at home.  

Umbrella trees.  It's actually a Pine Tree.  I know that I'm in Italy when I see these beautiful trees growing in rows. 

And when you need a change of scenery, there is always the ocean, 
only fifteen minutes down the road. 

Some beaches are quiet, some are lively.  
You choose.

Your'e in Etruscan territory.  
So many interesting villages, churches and fortresses to visit.

All the while you have a quiet, peaceful and charming home to come back to. 

Even the Sant Elena sheep herd themselves.  They are free to roam and will choose their morning and evening pastures as if herded.  

You can set your watch by their movements. 

Auf Wiedersehen.



Tuesday, October 2, 2018


I'm back

Could you sleep in this room?  

I could and I did. 

I live with a lot of color.

Every single day.

So happy to see that frost has not yet come.

It's great to be back.

But I got so used to having Gelato every afternoon. 

Did you know that Gelato contains less cream and more milk and sometimes no eggs at all? It is churned at a lower speed, hence is denser and has more flavor. 

Have a wonderful week dear friends. 


Friday, September 14, 2018

The countdown.

When I'm not vacationing or planting a garden, or putting up fruit and vegetables, or taking care of a whole menagerie of animals and birds. 

I paint.

More specifically, I hand paint ceramics.
The kind of ceramics which have been painted in Europe for more than 600 years. 

I paint because I have always admired this style of ceramics, known in Europe as Maiolica.

I paint whatever makes me happy.

Lots of tiles for kitchens and fireplaces.  
Tiles I will never see again.

I get to keep the rejects.
They are valuable, but only to me.  
I can learn from them. 

These little jewels I paint just for myself.

I paint a lot of practical ceramics just as long as they are also pretty. 

Some large murals take many weeks to finish.

Flowers and hand painted ceramics are a natural pairing.

An urn elevates and makes everything special. 

New but painted to look old.

A little gold makes it extra special.

A "Tondino"  is a very practical and large dish.  

Bowls are always the first to go.  
So why don't I paint more of them?  

You will see this happy bird all over Italy.

So many tiles I have stopped counting.

A favorite.

I can't stay away too long.  

Take care of yourselves.



Saturday, September 8, 2018

Morning Glories have a lot of talent.

Plant a few seeds

water now and then.

They have a way of finding a way to shine.

They cover awkward spaces beautifully.

They only bloom in the morning

and fade away. 

Where did this one come from?  
They call them Sports.

This one escaped to the hollyhocks.

They look especially nice when cascading from an urn.

Morning Glories self seed and show up in the most unexpected places.  
That is what makes them so special.  

And all the while you have not lifted a finger.  

Have a happy and lazy weekend dear friends.