Wednesday, September 30, 2009

A Visit With the Queen

The Queen Victoria dropped anchor in Frenchman Bay today, on it's inaugural visit to Bar Harbor. This was the scene from West Street approaching the town dock.

At the end of West Street, you realize the luxurious liner was moored quite a way out from the dock.

Zooming in on the stack.

For perspective, a shot with a 4 masted schooner in the foreground.

Shown with a backdrop of the Porcupine Islands.

Glad we got to see it in person!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Feathering My Nest With Tag Sale Treasures

This past Sunday, my friend Diane over in Blue Hill asked me if I wanted to go to the last day of a community tag sale where everything would be marked down to 1/2 off. She had seen a potter's wheel there the day before and wondered if we would be interested in it, as it would be marked down to $10! The wheel was missing a motor, but I instantly had a vision of having a second wheel in our studio (located in our basement) where we could enjoy each other's company while throwing pots. We bought the wheel and that will be another project for another day. But today, I wanted to share pictures of some of the other treasures we picked up that day.

A glass apothecary jar that I filled with cotton balls

that until I got it home, I hadn't even noticed this sweet etching on the front of it!

I wasn't sure what this was, there were two, this one and a blue one. I immediately planned to pair them with a glass pedestal to use as a dome, perhaps for a wedge of cheese.

And this set of plates that hold a bit of sea inspiration for me.

A set of 6 white linen cocktail napkins with a raised white-on-white embroidered design. And there's the edge of the other lovely blue glass dome thingy.

A vintage (I think) glass nutmeg grinder with it's charming little crank handle.

And a tiny glass salt & pepper set with traces of pepper still showing up in the grooves of the design. Notice the nice patina on the top of the left one.

A set of 4, pink and white embroidered napkins that I have yet to launder and iron.

And I can hardly wait to pour this linen water into my iron and inhale the scent of those glorious steamy vapors. This is a container I already had, and today I filled it with the scented water I had left over from my recent experiment with lavender and lemon balm lotion. If you missed that post, you can read about that here.

When I came across this set of well-worn blue, striped napkins they felt so soft and lovely that I was inspired to get them for Henri to use as handkerchiefs. (You probably don't care to know this, but the pollen in the air around here is rampant right now! )

And the best part is . . . all of my treasures were located in the room where they gave you a brown paper grocery bag and told you that you could fill it up for the mere cost of one dollar! This was by far the best tag sale I have ever been to. Have you ever had a really great tag sale day too?

Monday, September 28, 2009

Simon Says

It's time to pick the winner of our tiny Moose Balsam Pillow Giveway!

Going in for a closer look

Wow, he sure is fast!

Hey, look who it is!

Congratulations PiecefulAfternoon! You clearly were the apple of his eye!
Please email your address, using the link up at the top of the page, and Simon and I will make a little trip down to the post office together to get your package right out to you!

And thank you everyone else for reading and commenting on my posts!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Done Roving

I bought a little bundle of wool roving to experiment with a few weeks ago. The little white puffy pile you see on the left is roving. I haven't learned a whole lot about it yet, but I know this pile came from a sheep. My experiment tonight, was to give it some color by using what I had on hand. Wilton's icing gels and food dye. And a microwave and some vinegar. And most importantly, the latex gloves right there on the right.

After I dipped the roving into a mixture of 1 part vinegar to 2 parts water, I took a paint brush and dipped it into the icing gel and started applying it to the roving.

Quite messy, but fun.

After all the paint was applied, I just popped it into the microwave for 4 minutes. I let it cool down before rinsing with cool water and this is the result.

I still have to hang it up to dry though.

But I was dyeing to show ewe how it came out.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Baking A Sea Cake

Tonight I gave my seashell cake pan another try. It had been years since the last time I tried to bake a cake in it. Perhaps the universe was aligned just right tonight, because this was the first time my cake inverted completely out of the pan.

I used 2 cake pedestals, a handful of seashells and I had a plan for a little more sea inspiration.

I had extra batter and wondered if these cookie cutters, paired with a pie plate would work as a mini cake pan.

The lobster was not cooperating. But what a happy little starfish!

Starfish gets a sprinkle of coarse sugar crystals

I used a pastry brush to apply a coat of cocoa mixed with pure vanilla extract, in horizontal bands across the cake to enhance the shape of the shell.

Time to get out my handknit starfish dishcloth to help out with the kitchen cleanup.


And just a little reminder that the winner of my scented balsam moose pillow Giveaway will be selected on Monday! See last Thursday's post for more pictures and details of how to enter.

Friday, September 25, 2009

If I Had A Bakery By The Sea

I would be enchanted by

what I could find
just right outside my door

Like the perfect spot in my tiny village, where I took these photos yesterday,

that is for sale and has this view

It is the place known to locals as The Captain's House.

And if I lived there, I would have a bakery in the downstairs part

and in the autumn, I would make spice cakes in little ramekins,

just like I did yesterday in my kitchen where I live now.

And I would be sure to invite you in for coffee, and clever tea cakes in delicate and delightful shapes, as we laughed away our silly problems, and contentedly, looked out, to the sea.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

I'm Having a Giveaway!

And I'm celebrating this, my 99th post that I have written
about my happy life in Maine. Besides being known as the "The Pine Tree State," Maine is also famous for Lighthouses, Lobsters and MOOSE.

Perhaps not PINK moose, but that's the fun part of the giveway! I have chosen my two favorite colors, and whipped up this tiny moose pillow and stuffed it with fragrant balsam fir from the North Woods of Maine.

Oh, and I'm including a tiny canvas bag in matching colors, just because.

All you need to do to enter this giveway is just leave me a little comment, just to let me know you're there. Just say "hi" and introduce yourself, or say anything you'd like really. I love reading your comments! The winner will be selected by Simon, my parrot and be announced in Monday's post. You can enter twice, by making another comment in tomorrow's post too, because I just love reading your comments!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Bird Bath

Simon prepares for bath time.
He only needs to see the spray bottle filled with hot water to know what's next.

The wet mist darkens his feathers in swirly patterns as it mixes with his oil preened feathers. When birds preen they use the oil from their preen gland at the base of his tail, to coat their feathers to keep them from drying out or becoming brittle.

Covered with water droplets, his wing looks iridescent.

After bath Shabby Chic impression.

Simon focused on his after bath pizza.

At least one of us knows how to focus here.