This week, while the two older boys are enjoying an extended time at the cottage with their grandparents, I feel like I'm on a bit of a "staycation" at home.
I decided to spend the afternoon in Niagara on the Lake.
First I popped into a favourite antique barn - Queen's Antiques.
Right beside the shop there is a Lavender farm. The fields were in bloom and with the old car parked beside it was like something out of Provence. I half expected Monty Don to be wandering about the field in his straw hat!
Inside were beautiful hammered copper pots where they processed the Lavender oil.
Then I made my way into town and we walked up and down the main street, window shopping and enjoying the elaborate gardens. Niagara on the Lake boasts the most beautiful town gardens - overflowing baskets hanging from street lamps, colouful boulevards generously planted. and urns standing at each shop entrance in a variety of different combinations.
Surrounding town are the historic homes, and while the streets are lined with so many attractive houses, I have a few favourites in town that I always like to walk past.
There's something so beautifully simple about this white one. It's a combination of it's not having shutters on the twelve pane windows, the matte black door and matching lantern, and the two simple planters.
There's also this more spacious white house a few houses down, with it's additions extending out back. It also appeals to me but with more intricate simplicity. I like the black shutters with the shutter dogs and the curved chimney tops and the white picket fence. It perfectly suits being a corner house.
When the boys tired of walking up and down the streets, we made our way to the park. Simcoe Park is set at the top of town, a modest playground and an inviting water fountain (nearly irresistible on a warm summers day as this was). There are a few hills to run about, and large trees here and there for shade. There are people picnicking and there's a band shell. It's probably one of my favourite parks. It's well thought out and perfectly cared for.
By the time we finished playing, Jude's eyes got heavier and heavier, nearly lulled to sleep by swinging motion, but having too much fun to fully give in and fall asleep.
And finally, I added this small cottage, currently undergoing extensive renovations, to my list of favourite homes.
It's a quaint little cottage of perfect proportions. Just enough of a front porch, just the right balance of windows and a perfectly aged chimney. Oh and let's not forget to mention that tree, with it's well-groomed canopy. Thank goodness some builder had the foresight to leave it be and not remove it mid-improvement. It would have been a terrible loss.
We left happy and wet. It seemed wrong to allow him to play around in the fountain, but honestly, how could I resist. He was having the time of his life and it was so warm. (And he wasn't the only one! There were even lifeguards so it couldn't be that much of a faux pas.)