The Grower's Daughter

The Grower's Daughter

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Weekend Celebrations and Some Antique Finds

This past weekend we had lots to celebrate.

First, it was Willen's 7th birthday - something that is so unbelievable to me... seven. I can hardly believe how old he seems in these photos. He's still so young to me, and yet when I see this, I see that he's not. He's become this independent, smart and loving person, who is always learning new things and creating and exploring and longing for me to let him be free and adventurous.

Instead of a big party, we invited the few kids on our block that we don't really know so well. Summer holidays are one week away and we wanted him to meet some neighbors who he could spend time with this summer. This is a lovely "after" shot of the party, but we were busy having fun.

We also got to celebrate this handsome man whom I love and count as one of my greatest blessings. This man has no idea how deeply I love him and how thankful I am to be his. God has transformed him into the father I dreamt would raise my children with me and He continues to do the most beautiful work in Him. He is one amazing father and we love him.

And even amidst all the celebrating, I was able to sneak out on Saturday morning with my sister for a quick sale at Oliver and Rust. I picked up a basket, a metal carrier which was for my dad (he has a slight obsession with little feeders and carriers right now) and an ironstone sugar pot.

I also grabbed these two gorgeous pillows that she makes. They match our couch perfectly, and are the perfect size for our two sitting chairs.

Monday, June 13, 2016

In Season - Peonies and The First Strawberries

With our local farmer's markets back in full swing, the displays of local fruits and vegetables, cut flowers, and fresh-baked goods seem to become more abundant each week as more becomes available.

This week was a favourite of mine and it meant a special trip into a neighboring city's Saturday morning market.

For only two or three weeks in the year, a local Peony grower fills a stand with pails and pails of Peonies, in as many as half a dozen different varieties. I snapped a picture with my cellphone quickly to send to Ryan so he could understand my excitement.

She sells them for $4 a bunch (five stems) or 3 bunches for $10.

Needless to say, we each left with an armful of peonies.

Another favourite sight were rows and rows of little baskets mounded full of bright red strawberries.

Our strawberry season has officially begun and we are looking forward to when we are able to "pick-your-own", which will start in the coming weeks. There are few things as wonderful as freshly-picked strawberries, still warm from the sun.

These berries didn't last long. I couldn't wash them fast enough.

And no trip to the market is complete without taking home a treat - this week we picked a sticky bun and pain au chocolat and split them between us.

The Peonies found their homes all over the house. In the bathrooms on the vanities, on my night table, on the coffee tables and on the mantel.


Friday, June 10, 2016

Pink Peonies

Friday is the market day, and it's also one of the days the flower truck stops at the store. Local Peonies are finally ready, so I indulged this morning in an armful for the house.

As I sit at the dining room table and type this, their scent is slowly filling the room.

While most of them are quite tight, it won't take long at all for them to unfurl.

I placed them in this large ironstone pot that I found while away last weekend. (It's actually part of my birthday gift from my mother in law, but she let me take it home early) The pot is set in a large round wicker tray and is sitting on my dining room table. It's quite the statement.

Monday, June 6, 2016

A Weekend Away - The Country Living Fair

I'm back, and what a wonderful, quick little trip away it was!

My mother in law met me at 5:30 on Friday morning and we headed down with two other friends to Rhinebeck, NY for the Country Living Fair. We arrived just before lunch and had all afternoon to browse the show. The weather was questionable all week, but it wasn't going to stop us, and thankfully we didn't let it! It was perfect show weather - overcast, warm but no humidity and breezey.


I visited some of my favourite vendors, and enjoyed taking in their creatively styled displays and collections of found treasures.

There are always so many interesting things to see - it just feeds your creativity.


What I did find for myself, my mother in law purchased to put away as a birthday gift for me - some ironstone pieces and the most adorable little basket.

I would have loved to take home one of these gorgeous topiaries, but crossing the border with live plants isn't encouraged, so I didn't want to risk having it taken.

While I was browsing through this particular booth, which was located at the back of the stage area, I was half listening to the introduction of the next speaker. She got my full attention however, when I heard her mention about an award-winning blogger from Connecticut. Nora Murphy of Nora Murphy Country House was doing a live presentation. I just loved that! I didn't have time to sit and watch, but I listened as I slowly walked around that particular barn. Over the past year, her blog and style have been a great inspiration to me. I'm so drawn to her beautifully curated mood boards for each season, and how those seasons effect her home, her gardens and eye for making the simple beautiful. It was one of those right place at the right time moments and it added something more special to the trip.

After the fair, we headed to our hotel in Hudson, NY. We had stayed here before and enjoyed the town. After freshening up a bit, we headed out to the authentic pizza joint for a great dinner.

The next morning, before heading out on a scenic drive home, we opened a favourite store in Hudson - Red Chair Antiques. We browsed around for a while and then headed out.

It's a shop that is just full of the most beautiful European object, all perfectly displayed.

We made our way to Kinderhook, a tiny town about 40 minutes North of Hudson. It was Saturday morning so we caught the local farmer's market and walked through the town square. Before leaving we found this little cafe with a squeaky door and friendly locals, and enjoyed a delicious lunch. And of all things, a drum and pipe parade, complete with period costumes, marched right past the shop. Once again we noted that the best things happen on unplanned adventures.

This old man sold the sweetest bouquets of his garden flowers. The peonies tucked in them made me smile.

On our way home, we took the slower country drive through the small towns and winding hills. We stopped at one man flea markets and antique stores whenever we we came across them and by the time we made it back home, my car was quite full!

A highlight was coming across this salvage place - Fort Plain Antiques and Salvage. It's a warehouse of architectural treasures that will reward anyone who is willing to get a little dirty digging through it.

Can't wait to show some of the great finds I came across.

Thursday, June 2, 2016

A Successful Shopping Trip

I don't usually share photos of items I've picked up while shopping - unless said items are old and beautiful and found while antiquing, but yesterday, after way too long - probably Christmas - my sister and I got out for a morning of shopping the outlet malls. We had three handsome little men in tow, and this required an abundance of packed snacks and a few breaks on the outdoor playground. All things considered, they did well!

I had so much fun, and found some really great things that I couldn't help sharing.

First, we all know how much of a sucker I am for packaging... pretty packaged cleaning supplies is like a whole new level. I picked up these common good items from Marshalls. I kind of love that store. I couldn't resist them for $6.99.

I find Homesense, Winners and Marshalls are the best places to stock my "gift drawer". You know, that drawer or shelf that is stocked with random items for gifts needed at a later time? Whenever I'm out, if I come across something great, that's a great deal, I tuck it away for a time when I need something. A favourite item I keep on hand? When I come across the most precious little baby outfits I grab them. There is always a friend or someone at church who's having a baby. (These ones won't even make the drawer as they're already wrapped for a friend.)

I also can't resist the gourmet food section. There are always a few things I have an eye out for - great coffee, favourite teas, and shortbread biscuits. This time I grabbed some old fashioned sodas for the boys, some good tea, my favourite chocolate chunk shortbread from Scotland, and even these amazing sea salt caramels - dangerous, dangerous aisle.

I also picked up the glass canister for q-tips, the small white cake stand and the set of marble coasters - each under $10.

Another favourite shop is the J Crew outlet. I love this store!

All of their accessories were 50% off, plus an additional 15% off. I grabbed these lovely tortoise shell sunglasses, a simple gold clip, and pretty little earrings, as well as something for Ryan for Father's Day.

And while unrelated, I had to snap a photo of the last of these gorgeous peonies Ryan brought home from work. A customer had dropped them off as a thank you. He got quite excited when he saw they were peonies and roses, and couldn't wait to bring them home. It was a lovely, thoughtful surprise.

Tomorrow I head out for another weekend of shopping - this time at the Country Living Fair!

Hopefully I'll be just as successful there too.