Friday, February 12, 2016

Having Afternoon Tea at the Tilted Teacup in Brooksville Florida

In Brooksville there is a little complex of  very adorable shops and this lovely tea room!
Many of the shops are interconnected  and you can walk from one to the other without going outdoors. 
You can also enter each shop from the main porch area.  Here is the entrance to the Tilted Teacup.  

 They serve a lovely high tea!  This is the main portion of the meal.  
Each person had four different sandwiches, a hot quiche, and three different mini desserts.
This was after a preliminary pot of tea and blueberry scones.

 It was really elegant.

We had a choice of Butternut Soup or Broccoli Cheese today.
I chose the butternut and it was perfection.  

 The room wasn't overly decorated but was charming with cute touches like this 
hat rack with vintage hats in the hall way.

There is a little shop as you come in

I loved the fireplace area with the pink birdcage and flowers!

I thought the Valentine Tree was sweet. I'm sure it probably changes with the holiday.

Behind the counter there was a delightful array of colored napkins, folded and ready to be turned 
into rosettes. 

A chalkboard that listed some of the menu items.

But come early for tea as some were sold out by our tea time at 1:30 

There were many lovely items in the store

Some vintage decorative items were also scattered about. 

The faded roses were a nice touch!

Afterwards, with full tummies, it was tempting to linger here on the front porch.

My friend Isabelle from Ocala came down to have tea and a little meetup! 
We have been online friends for many years, both writing on the same sites and following each other.

This was the first time we have met in person!  

We found that we are Irish cousins!  Both being Fitzgeralds who can all trace their linage back 
to a few people in the middle ages.  It's crazy!
Here is a link to Isabelle's blog

The conversation never lagged, it bounced from one topic to another so rapidly I mourned that each one was not explored enough!  Her husband Al dined with us and could hardly get a word in! But then again he was very interested in the meal!  

They are a wonderful couple and so much fun!  These snowbirds will fly back to Connecticut soon but next winter I hope to meet up with them again when they return to our beautiful Florida.

Sharing with

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Chinese New Year 2016

Chinese New Year!!

It's the year of the Monkey so I trotted these out for the day!

 Perhaps it was my sister Karan's garden that inspired me but I started thinking about having a Chinese for dinner.

I decided to order Chinese take out to celebrate but even an order for one is too much so I asked Mom to come over and bring my sister Janet, who was visiting!

It's nice she lives just 'round the  corner!

I ended up ordering extra dinners after all.
with lots of Ruby Red Sweet and Sour Sauce!

It was only an impromptu dinner 
but those are the best kinds sometimes!

Mom insisted on there being a picture of me my oriental top!

My sis Karan visited China recently.  
Karan published a wonderful blog post on her visit...look HERE for some absolutely gorgeous photos and 
a story about their day in China.  

So,  Happy New Year.....again! 

Did you celebrate?  How?

Sharing with

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Karan's garden

Getting together with the family

Karan, my sister asked us over for the afternoon last week.  It's nice we don't have to wait 
until the weekend to hang out.  We're all retired, footloose and fancy free.

She has put in a new garden and it was really beautiful at night
I had to have this shadow picture!
The twilight give the rocks and shadow an amazing blue color

Karan is happiest when entertaining!

 My younger sister was here as well as Joel, Karan's friend, and Mom

 I was having such a good time I forgot to photograph the delicious dinner she made
for us:
To begin:
Wine and a variety of crackers, white and yellow cheeses and meats

Roast pork and sauerkraut
 baked with apple and onion
Mashed potato
Green beans with almonds

Godiva chocolate liqueur

And to finish...

Mom brought a homemade
Blueberry Cobbler,
Karan added Vanilla ice cream

I really like the serenity of her new front garden.
Is it a Zen Garden?

It's days like this that I feel fortunate to have such a great family.

Sharing with

Thursday, February 4, 2016

To Amuse Myself

I don't decorate for Valentines Day these days but this week, I decided to put up a garland 
in honor of Valentine's Day that suited me

It was an impromptu gesture and I just used some fine twine and colorful paperclips

 Do you feel the itch to straighten them? 
I liked it better this way than perfectly aligned.

It's nothing special but it amuses me,
now that I'm on my own via widowhood
to bring out my vintage...OLD MAID cards!

This is what is fun about thrifting.  You never know what you'll find!

Who remembers this series of cards from the 50's!

Do you remember your favorite card?  Mine was Molly Moo

Favorite picture of the week!

Total serenity!  

Sharing with

Monday, February 1, 2016

A Caching Kind of Day

I always enjoy attending a caching event.  It's fun to catch up with new and old(ish) friends and share tales of our adventures while out geocaching.   Yesterday the event was held at the Thirsty Marlin in Palm Harbor.

A photo of one of our hosts, was
Wild Rice (her geocaching name)!  She co-hosted with Gray Wolf, her husband.

 For the uninitiated, geocaching is a world wide GPS game where we are hunting out hidden containers that hold a log book and sometimes fun objects like coins, toys, etc.  Once you find the container (cache) you sign the log book as proof and then enter your find on the website. It's really a lot of fun.

 Here are some of the guests and there were perhaps a dozen more I didn't get.  The groups are usually small and 
very friendly.  

One of the guests was able to claim her 2,000th find here today!  It puts my paltry 315 to shame as I have been involved since April of 2009.  I didn't look for any caches though for five years during that time, so technically I claim only two years of active hunting. 

Later I was inspired to look for a couple on my way home.  I was loaded with opportunities, there are literally thousands of hides in our area, over a hundred just on my drive home.  But I hit the mother lode of caches!  First though I stopped here:

It looks desolate, but really it isn't.  I entered on foot and found a cache hidden on the back side of the guard rail.  It's a favorite hiding spot for cachers.  Usually they are magnetic and can be anywhere and are notoriously hard to find.  This one was in the curve, in the little shelf area they all have and I found it almost instantly.  

I had time for one more before it got dark.  As a lone person out caching I don't do night caches just for safety reasons unless it is a parking lot that is well lit or something.  

I stopped  at my second place approximately where my GPS said it was and looked at the plain front of the restaurant.  It was closed but clean and pretty bare of ornaments out front.  Just benches and a large white box type bench.  I looked everywhere and could not find it.  I tried opening the box several times after looking at the comments where people noted it was such a large cache.  Finally,  after hunting for fifteen or so minutes, I tried again, this time pulling on the side instead of trying to lift the top and out slid a massive treasure chest!

I was so excited!  This is by far the largest cache I have ever found.  It was locked however, but I looked at the hint on the website and the clue was "Found".  So I turned the lock to read "found" and it unlocked a treasure!

I had already pulled out and signed the massive log book when I took the picture.  It alone, was very cool!  A real looking ships log. 

 There were, in addition to the usual swag, larger toys and several travel bugs.  (special items you pick up at one cache and leave in another.  As they travel you can watch them on line as people log them when they move them).

I signed the log book and put it back, picked up two "pieces of eight" and left a little prize of my own.  

It was harder to relock the thing and I tried and tried and finally left it, hidden back in its hiding place but unlocked and went back to the car.  It was getting dark but I just couldn't do that, so I went back over to it and played with the lock forever until it locked tight.  Whew! 

It was fun to find the Pirates chest on this particular weekend when the Gasparilla festival was in full swing in downtown Tampa.  I don't go because the crowds are horrible, but I felt like I participated in a small way anyway. 

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Making A Greeting Card Your Own

I had purchased several packages of blank cards and envelops to make watercolor greeting cards, but they were not heavy enough paper to absorb water and so have been sitting in my drawer for ages.  

So the other night I pulled one out and and thought about what to do with them.  

This is what I came up with!

Nothing amazing to be sure.  I am far to impatient to be a perfectionist, but I had fun making this.

I pasted a piece of homemade textured paper on to the front as a base. 

I was tossing out an old pocket calendar and thought I would cut out the little birds and assemble them on the paper.

Then I added a ribbon.  

 Inside, I printed out a photo I discovered on Debbie Dabbles blog that touched my heart.  

I added the rest of the ribbon to border it and put a button in the middle.
Looking at in now, I should have just put little buttons on each end of the ribbons to finish it and maybe leave the heart off
but hey...

 On the outside of the envelope I wrote 
I heard you injured your foot....

and when she turned it over to open it, I wrote
A little birdie told me!  

It was a lot of fun for me to make, I know it's not perfect but I don't let that stop me.

She really enjoyed receiving something unexpected.  

Sharing with

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Correspondence and Such

I have been busy at the post office lately sending postcards and letters and packages.

For Friday's Hunt, I'm using E for Engage.  It's good to engage with others via correspondence.  No man is an island!  

I love snail mail and wish I had more fun mail than I do, but it's because I haven't been sending out much of anything.  I signed up with , Jill from A Little Bit of Everything suggested it and so I immediately signed up.  
 I've sent out a couple of international postcards.  One has been received and noted so I should be getting one in the mail soon.   I'm going to stagger the postcards so replies don't all come at once.  You can send up to five and the number increases when they see them arrive and are noted on the account.

Here is a greeting card from my friend, Diane at Diane Wants to Write

I love the native outfits from the Philippines on the front, and inside the nice message.
Thanks Diane!  She is another that has a nice group of people she corresponds with and she invited me to be part of her group a year or so ago.  Nice!

I love the blue checked pattern!


Lastly, instead of buying a card for my granddaughter (whose birthday was Jan 24),  I decorated a card for her, adding cut out pansies from handmade paper to card with just a simple bee skep on the front.  I then wrote the verse myself  inside adding more pansies and birds.  I sent it to her dorm at college.  I know she'll appreciate the personalized card.  

Now when am I going to get to my thank you notes from Christmas?

Sharing with