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Roses are red.....

Our hometown of Portland, Oregon is called the Rose City.....
we seem to have the ideal growing conditions for every
variety of roses....and while I do find them [roses] beautiful,
I have removed almost EVERY.LAST.ONE from my yard.

I find them painful to garden around and really not pleasing mixed
with other favorite perennials.  I know, I know, there are many 
rose lovers out there....sorry, I prefer NOT to get pricked 
when out in my garden....the pruning was killing me!

However, I love to visit the Portland Rose Garden in Washington Park
every June and see the gorgeous varieties at their peak, smell the overwhelming 
fragrance that hits you the moment you step out of the car, and take oodles
of photos of roses.......

My hubby and big girl are in California for a soccer tournament so my 
mom came to keep me and the little one company this weekend.

On Saturday we had covered ALOT of ground, fabric shops,
antique shops, Ikea all with my 10 year old in tow.....and while
she was a trooper, her patience was wearing thin......that was
until she spied a red crinoline in a booth at Monticello Antiques Shop
in Southeast Portland.  Of course her Mimi purchased it for her
and when we returned to the car, the little one proceeded to 
put the new purchase on {she just so happened to be wearing the red shirt!}.

She danced through the rose garden and made everyone who 
came in contact with her smile!  The little lady in red
was a perfect compliment to the red roses.....

A BIG hug through blogland goes to the talented and beautiful Holly Mathis who
featured our work on my living room today on her was
a blast to collaborate with her and I am blessed to have left the experience
with a new friend!  Muwahhhhh to you Holly!  You made my day.
Welcome to my blog new readers too!



We are on day 2 of summer far so good. 
This summer seems different - my girls are older - they
sleep in, don't need to be entertained as much, are busy 
and can be left alone if I go to gym, grocery store, etc.....
it's a good thing but also means that sooner than I would
like to think about, they will be grown and gone.

Summer weather has been elusive here in the Pacific Northwest....
it visited us this weekend while my big girl played in a local
soccer tourney and was gone as of yesterday.

I had some questions about this chair so thought I would post
some photos that better show the ticking fabric.  And I
am afraid that's all I have for this Tuesday morning.....a $100
old chair upholstered in humble black and white ticking, dressed
up with a fabulous Schumacher pillow!

Have a lovely day!

{oh - heeeyyyyyyy, Eleanor!!!!!}



Oops....a super-uber busy weekend got the best of me.  The winners of Jeanne Oliver's Creatively Made online class are:

Sue Ann

Please email me for details {}.

Happy Monday everyone!


Mom's Summer 'To Do' list....and a GIVEAWAY!

I know you have seen them....on blogs and Pinterest.....those
cute lists of ALL the  activities/experiences your
kids and family hope to enjoy over the summer.  I give credit to Meg for
starting the trend, cause I happen to think she is 'the bomb' of
a mom and a trendsetter to boot! 

Well, maybe it's because I have older kids {or a bad attitude},
we didn't do a list this year.  Whatever.  I know we will do 
all our favorite things, I don't need a giant chalkboard
reminding me that we need to have ice cream sundaes.....
{but if you DO have a giant chalkboard reminding you
to eat ice cream sundaes - way to go!}

Plus, by mid-August I begin to feel like Julie McCoy
the perky cruise director from the Love Boat {remember her?}, 
making sure EVERYONE is having fun....but me!

So this week, the LAST week of school, I sat down and wrote 
a "Mom's Summer To-Do" list.  

Yes, I did.  

I think a lot of us moms sort of get busy with giving our kids the perfect summer
and end up counting down the days until school begins somewhere around
August 1st.  Don't get me wrong, spending precious quality time
with our babies is important and fulfilling, but some 'mommy time' sprinkled in on a 
regular basis keeps everyone sane - not that I speak from 
experience or anything like that......

My theme for this summer is 'BALANCE'.

My list includes lots of fun stuff - al fresco dates with my husband, 
evenings with girlfriends sitting on my patio, going to the 
farmers market, hiking.......

Also on my list is to GET CREATIVE.
This year, I had the privilege of participating in Jeanne Oliver's
Do you know Jeanne?  I only know her as an internet friend but
hope to be able to meet her in 'real life' someday.  She 
has a generous and encouraging spirit. 

Now mind you - I am not all miss crafty but I do consider myself 
creative and Jeanne's course is for EVERYONE!  I really
give credit to Jeanne for inspiring me to be more
creative, cause like having some summer mom fun, creativity
can also fall to the wayside in the midst of a busy life.

Jeanne is offering the class again - beginning Monday, June 18!  It works like this -
you get a code to access the online videos and can watch them at your leisure .  Jeanne
will keep the videos for this course available to all participants until
the end of if summer gets away from you, you will have time
to catch up when the kiddos head back to class!

And guess what?  Jeanne has generously offered to giveaway THREE spots
in the online class to readers of Forever*Cottage!  To enter to win:

* Leave me a comment telling me what you would
have on your "Mom's Summer To-Do List".

I will close the comments on Saturday at midnight PST and announce
the winner on Sunday {a rare blogging day for me!}.

If you can't wait to see if you won and want to sign up for 
Jeanne's class go HERE!


Judging a book by it's cover....

Do you do it?

I'm going out on a limb with this post, talking about a subject that doesn't jive with my normal frivolous ramblings about vintage sales and new/old furniture......chalk it up to my age, life experiences....peri-menopause, hell, I don't know.....but it's something that's on my mind and because I believe 99.9% of you are women, I thought I would throw it out there!

 Oh, and it's definitely something I have been guilty of it.....something I am not proud to admit.  So don't go thinking I am all up on my high horse!

What am I talking about, you ask?

Hold that thought.

First, I should share what got me thinking about this.  It was at Farm Chicks, on Friday night.  I looked at the group of women that I had assembled for a meet up at Chaps - we were a Diverse crew - ranging in age from 20-somethings to 50-somethings.  We were midwesterners, west coasters, south westerners, country gals and city slickers.  There were the disciplined skinny girls in our midst and those of us who enjoy a meal {with a cocktail} and are counting on our next workout to lose those 20 extra pounds.  We were blonds, brunettes and pretty silvery-grays.  Who knows what our political views are - probably just as diverse, thank God we didn't go there that night!  The ONE thing we had in common was that we were all there for the Farm Chicks show.  Creative women.  Women who have pure, loving and supportive hearts....for other women.....all collected at Chaps......a restaurant owned and run by one of the most special women I believe I have ever met.  Being in the presence of these awesome women - all so different was a moment of clarity and joy for me - Cause there was a time in my life where I too often 'judged a book by it's cover'.

I made assumptions about other women based on rather superficial things - how they looked, how old they were, where they lived, what they drove, where they shopped, what they did for a living, what brands they were  wearing/or not wearing, their general lifestyle, political beliefs......yuck!  I spent way too much time trying to "fit in" or working hard to maintain a friendship that was truly one sided with far too many.  Thankfully, age brings maturity and a comfort with who you are.

I am grateful that one of the benefits {in the midst of many negatives} of getting older is to appreciate and celebrate differences - I now truly seek out inspiring women, whether they are just like me, or not. 

And what I have discovered while contemplating this post is that I collect friends like I collect decorative objects for my home.  Some of my friends are vintage, some are contemporary, I embrace imperfections, some friends are practical and reliable, some are unexpected with a touch of whimsy, some are colorful, some are safe, many are beautiful both inside and out.  And most importantly, like home accessories, more friends are NOT necessarily better.  My older self prefers quality over quantity.  I aware and thankful for how my 'collection' blesses my life.......I believe it is one of the benefits of moving around alot and having to create relationships - often!

Am I perfect? No!  Do I still find myself wondering why I didn't 'click' with someone I meet? Yes!

But as a mother raising a tween and teen, I optimistically hope that by watching me and how I relate to my women friends, that I will show my girls that you can't "judge a book by it's cover".


Finding what you are NOT looking for.....

It's both the one great thing and endlessly frustrating thing about 
shopping at flea markets......
You most likely find  awesome things that you were
not necessarily looking for and those specific items
you have in your mind to find, often prove elusive!

This was certainly the case for me at Farm Chicks!

I was on the hunt for a great cabinet - preferably painted, with
it's original finish.  It was not to be.

Instead, I found this pedestal table with a GREAT patina -
worn white paint, almost a grey finish.  At the bargain
price of $125 I snapped it up quick.  While this
table might prove too large for most room's scale,
my great room could use the 'hef' this table provides.

Happy Friday everyone!
My girls have exactly ONE week left of school!
Needless to say, momma was busy with her calendar
and the camp brochures yesterday....better late than never!


I took exactly 10 pictures at Farm Chicks....{and here they are!}

First, I must apologize.  I went to Farm Chicks and did not bring a real camera.
{just my trusty iPhone}

I did that totally on purpose.

I went to Farm Chicks for a getaway, to hang with my girlfriends,
to hunt for great finds, see old friends, enjoy some adult
beverages along with some yummy food........and I am 
happy to report that I successfully accomplished all of the above!
Plus, I managed to take 10 pictures with my iPhone.

Spokane is good 5 hours away from Portland, but with girlfriends and a speedy
mini {van NOT cooper - heeeyyy, Kasey}the trip goes super fast.  The drive
is also beautiful - through the great Columbia Gorge and then through eastern Washington.
The photo above was taken in eastern Washington.

When we arrived in Spokane, we headed straight for a relatively new vintage
shop called 'Pink'.  Pink is owned by a friend, the lovely Celeste Shaw who
also happens to own the best restaurant in Spokane, Chaps.  Pink is
just awesome - a mix of lots of industrial pieces along with a bunch 
of chippy stuff with reproduction pieces mixed in.  So good!

My hubby works for a pharmaceutical company so the sign above was tempting
for his office.....

See the moose?  It is a taxidermy form - used to stretch the hides over when 
they were getting....ahem......'stuffed'!

On Friday night we headed to Chaps - where Celeste had reserved primo tables for us.  
We met up with a group of gals from Minnesota - many of whom are Junk Bonanza 
vendors and had come to Farm Chicks for fun, the fabulous Melaine from My Sweet Savannah
who has become a friend {she is real and nice}, Tiffany Dixon {The Fancy Farmgirl} and 
Beth Quinn {from Beth Quinn Designs}.  We were an eclectic group and felt so 
warmly welcome by Celeste who is really the most generous and gracious hostess! 

We ended our night out by posing for pictures in front
of Tiffany 'new' truck - how awesome is it?????
How cheesy are we?

On Saturday morning, it was time to get our shop on!
We were lucky to have Early Bird tickets but unlucky to have
to stand in the pouring rain waiting to get in!  It was horrible - 
cold and wet but it did not seem to dampen {huh!} the enthusiasm
once Serena opened the doors!

Almost my first stop was Uber Chic's booth.  I purchased my bench from them 
last year and I just love that they bring items exclusively from Europe.  This year,
their booth was awesome!  Can you see the dyed grain sacks in the photo above?
They were SO awesome!  Ingenious, I tell ya!  It really gives some
'oomph' to the traditional grain sack.  I purchased a yellow one for my
living room. Wish I would have purchased more!  I think we will
be seeing alot more of them incorporated into contemporary design.

Uber Chic also brought a ToN of crates, demijohn jugs, glass canning jars, baskets and
wooden cutting boards.  Needless to say, we spent alot of time in their booth over
our two days at the show.

If you ever have the opportunity, I highly recommend The Farm Chicks show.  It's a blast!
And by the looks of the photo above, taken of our full mini, I think
we successfully got our shop-on!

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