We hope you enjoyed a cozy holiday & are snuggled up while the blizzard storms on!
Hope your holiday preparations are bringing you some festive fun! The last week before Christmas completely snuck up on me this year – so at the moment I am descending into flour-in-hair batter everywhere mode. It’s baking time in our itty bitty cozy kitchen.
So instead of posting photos of the disaster zone where the cookies & biscuits & jams & breads will magically appear from, here are some last-minute gift ideas:
Yes, I’m a fanatic. But really – The Art of Simple Food is a wonderful cookbook filled with basic tried-and-true recipes and makes a lovely gift.
I don’t know what the local spot is for you, but around here there’s nothing better than Scratch by Willard Beach. Use some sneaky detective skills to discover where your lucky loved one likes to grab their coffee/baked goods and pick up a gift card.
If you like to give handmade presents but can’t craft for another second, Martha has plenty of edible gift ideas here. Buuuuut if you’re running low on holiday energy, I highly recommend finding a local baking company or store to support – your friends & family will be happier with your well-rested good company than with a frazzled red-eyed version of yourself surrounded by a mess of handmade holiday-ness.
(Can you tell who’s scaling down on handmade gifts this year? No more knitting through till 7am on Christmas for this girl)
Lola and Oliver
(We adopted two black kittens from the Humane Society this weekend! Things have not been quiet around here) Hope you’ve enjoyed a festive weekend!
This weekend Graham and I drove a little ways up north to check out the foliage and hike away our colds. We also stumbled upon the wonderful place pictured above, The Barn on 26. The old Shaker-built barn, housing wall-to-wall antique furniture, books, pottery, and of course a barn cat named Elizabeth, managed to be cozy and welcoming despite its soaring wood roof. Upon entering through the large red doors, we were greeted with a bowl of fresh-picked apples and a sign encouraging us to help ourselves. The owner, Alice, slipped in a little while later and we enjoyed chatting with her about the antiques, her horses, and winters in New England. We didn’t leave with the bookshelf we’ve been hunting for, but we did take home a bag of pine cones…
… which we put into our canning jar lamp. The end table the lamp is sitting on is a barrel that Graham’s brother gave us from the Portland Architectural Salvage. Alice told us that some of the young girls who board with her and tend to the horses had volunteered to gather up the pine cones. They were all piled into cute little brown bags, tucked behind arm chairs and next to hutches throughout both floors of the lofted barn. I thought it was such a sweet thing to do – and so nice that these girls have this special place.
Hope you’re in the midst of a cozy fall and having a pleasant time gearing up for winter!
Pictured above is my Mom, a pumpkin creation by Dad, and myself at about age four in the backyard at home in Connecticut. That Japanese Maple in the background was a well-loved and oft-climbed favorite of the neighborhood. And below is a photograph Graham snapped with his phone yesterday at the Portland Farmers Market. I am pictured clutching a pumpkin destined for great things (soon-to-be carved artwork by Graham followed by a slow-bake into delicious pie) as well as a gorgeous cluster of beets peaking out of the bag. We also re-stocked our apple cider supply, an autumnal staple in our new home.
I love fall. Really. Love. Fall. I didn’t fully understand just how completely the seasons had soaked into my being until I was away from the east coast during the fall for a few years. One autumn in particular comes to mind – I was in India about 4 years ago (from July – December, effectively skipping autumn) and come October I looked into my rucksack to discover that every single piece of clothing I had purchased – kurtas, dupattas, pashminas – was a shade of red, yellow, orange or brown. I had subconsciously created the changing leaves through my Indian wardrobe. So this year I’m just soaking it in – beyond thrilled to be back near my family and the shifting of the seasons. Happy Autumn!
We spent the weekend in awe of this place thanks to two special people who were kind enough to share the island with us. One Morning in Maine really came to life for me and I now find myself feeling inspired, refreshed, and grateful. Wishing you a spirited start to the week.
I fell off the blogging wagon… cause we moved!
We fit all of our belongings into Graham’s dad’s Eurovan –
Found a sweet table at the Portland Architectural Salvage –
We now have an apartment in South Portland Maine! Yay! Here’s my current inspiration for decorating the place:
The apartment gets some great light so I’m hoping to construct a version of this:
I’m so glad to have a new wonderful sunny wood floored oceanside apartment to call home!