~Something New~


We are preparing for a trip to the lake, today.

Labor Day weekend is the last big weekend of Summer 2010.

I have a post started in draft for Saturday Photo Fun II. The image, above, is included in that post.

Something New

I added something to my sidebar, very early this morning, I hope will become a regular feature. 

While looking at the list of blogs I follow, I saw a delightful post from Vignette Design.  It inspired me to begin the new sidebar feature.

In this first edition of Posts to Take Note, I used one of my own images.  In the future I hope to add the blog authors’ photos.  The feature was a spur of the moment idea, in the wee small hours of the morning. 

As you can see, from the image, we are fans of Coppola Wines, as well as fans of Coppola.

Delores’ (Design Vignette) photos are beautiful.  Her post about the Coppola Winery is well written. 

I was taken with Francis Ford Coppola’s quote.



~Autumnal Metamorphosis~



~Summer mantel morphs into Autumn~


Faux fireplace mantel as it looked during Summer 2010.


For more about how we assembled the faux fireplace mantel, click HERE.





Breakfast room harvest table for Autumn.







I said I was going to wait until September 1st.  However, we had a wonderful week of pre-Fall weather that sent me spinning into Autumn decorating mode. 

Besides…the older I get, the slower I get.  If I wait until Fall is officially here, I would finish the Fall vignettes sometime around December 24th!



PHOTO FROM FALL ‘99 or 2000

My friend Terri of Lakewood Manor, purchased a new red convertible, over the weekend.  When I saw a photo of her new Sebring, it brought back happy memories of eldest daughter’s Sebring convertible.

  One particular memory; a trip to Eckert’s Orchard (Illinois), in September, about 10 years ago, during apple picking time.

Oldest granddaughter Xanti and her cousin Sasha built a scarecrow at the orchard.  After a discussion, about how to get the fellow home, it was decided he should ride in style.

The photo was taken at Pere Marquette Lodge, Grafton Illinois.  We can’t make a trip to the orchards or Grafton, without a drive up to Pere Marquette State Park and the lodge.

Xanti is the taller of the two girls. 

Standing behind the girls is yours truly, 10 years and several pounds ago.

Linking to Susan’s Metamorphosis Monday.




The black iron dish rack, seen in A Kitchen Vignette, was found at Home Goods.

The paint color in the kitchen is Valspar Laura Ashley Gold 3

The paint color used in the master bedrooms at home and the lake is Sherwin Williams Antique White.

The pumpkins and other Fall items, used in the vignettes are faux, with the exception of the lotus pods.  The pods are from J’s Aunt Ruth’s lake.  The lake is no longer in existence.


I appreciate your wonderful response to Saturday Photo Fun

I hope to have Part II ready for publishing next weekend.

I’ll try to answer more questions in that post.

I am enjoying the project.


~Saturday Morning Photo Fun~


Straight From Canon Rebel T2i


Contrast Enhancement (high)


White Balance Clicked Once






Reverse Black and White (color)


Reverse Black and White (b&w)


Edge (level 10)-Saturation-Darken




Pictorialization (color engraving)

Photoscape is a free editing program with lots of options. 

I am not confident enough, in my skills, to pay for an editing program, at this time; perhaps later. 

For now, I will use the free downloads.

Click Photoscape, in the first sentence (highlighted in green), for a view of the program download.

Saturday morning I shot several photos, from the back porch, just before the sun rose above the trees that line the creek, behind our home.

The top image is a photo, straight out of the camera, of the evergreen that grows beside the back porch steps. 

I edited the photo, using various options in Photoscape, for 10 different looks with the same photo.


I am not compensated for mentioning Photoscape. 

My aim, with this post, is to show different editing options with the program.  There are many more. 

I find the program very easy to use.

I am thinking about doing a small series of posts, on photo editing, for hobby/blog photographers, like me.  I hope this isn’t too presumptuous, being the amateur hobby/blog photographer, I am. 

We’ll see what happens.  And we’ll see if I can do more than one post, on the subject.


~A Kitchen Vignette~

vignetteAWe are promised 50 degree nights and 70’s during the day, this week.

I know, and completely understand, not everyone welcomes Fall with open arms, the way I do.  It truly is my favorite time of year. 

This year I will welcome the season even more than usual.  Summer has been a tad hot, here in the St Louis area.  The temperatures, coupled with the humidity we have in Missouri, makes it seem much warmer than the thermometer reads. 

I tend not to think about what lies beyond Fall, preferring to savor the season, rather than project toward Winter.

When the time comes, I’ll welcome Winter, when we light the fireplace and enjoy the season, from our hearth room chairs. 

Since J retired, as a Lineman, for the local rural electric cooperative, I don’t have to worry about him going out in all kinds of weather conditions, including Winter. 

He served the cooperative well for nearly 40 years.

“Moose” celebrated his 65th birthday, Monday August 23. 

It’s been an interesting 65 years, to say the least.


It’s nice having him home when the weather is extreme and the roads not so nice .

It’s also nice the phone doesn’t ring, with “trouble calls”, in the wee small hours of the morning.

The vignette


I gathered a few cookbooks and added them to the cabinet top, at the end of the island.  Black and white dishes in a dish rack, a welcome home sign, canister and rooster add to the vignette.  I couldn’t resist the addition of a pumpkin. 



Tuesday Night Supper

One day a week, we have pasta.   

I love pasta!

I was very happy when I had great cholesterol numbers, at the check up, earlier this month.  J’s cholesterol report was good, too. 

That means we can continue our once a week pasta night, until further notice.

I’m always on the lookout for different ways to prepare pasta.

This week, I chose a recipe from the magazine, La Cucina Italiana (October 2010).


Penne con Salsiccia Zafferano

Fine sea salt

1/8 teaspoon crumbled saffron threads

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 cup thinly sliced onion

(from one medium)

1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves

3/4 pound sweet Italian sausage

1 cup heavy cream

1 pound penne

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil.  Meanwhile combine 1 tablespoon water and saffron in a small bowl; set aside.

In a large nonstick skillet; heat oil over medium heat.  Add onion and thyme, cook stirring frequently, until softened, about 4 minutes, then add sausage and cook, breaking up sausage with a wooden spoon, until sausage is mostly cooked through, about 6 minutes.  Add cream, saffron mix and a generous pinch of salt, bring to simmer and cook for 3 to 4 minutes.  Remove from heat and cover to keep warm.

Add pasta to the boiling water and cook until al dente.  Drain, then transfer to a large bowl; immediately add cream mixture and toss to combine.  Adjust seasoning and serve immediately.


I served Heirloom Tomato Carpaccio Salad, with the pasta.

The recipe is from Mary of Home is Where the Boat Is

The link will take you to photos of her beautiful salad and the recipe.


Linking to Artie’s Vignette Fridays.



Designs by Gollum

Happy weekend!


~RL Inspired~


Ralph Lauren Home advertising is beautiful. 

I wasn’t surprised when I found inspiration for this week’s tablescape at the RL Home site.

RL Inspiration

Inspiration for the table from Ralph Lauren Home.

I saw these photos several months ago and thought of putting together a table, using these colors and textures.  I bought bandanas and woven round placemats at Walmart, in preparation; that was the extent of collecting the elements, for quite awhile. 

Fast forward to Monday morning, this week. 

J had another blood draw, early that morning, a few miles south of our home.  As usual, we found other things to do while we were in the area. 

A trip to Jo~Ann Fabric was on the list. The fabric store is in a new location, in Saint Peters MO, formerly the Circuit City building. If you live in our neck of the woods, stop by; more space than the former location and lots to see. 

What did J do at Jo~Ann Fabric?  Well, J was fascinated by the sewing machines.  I was beginning to think he was going to make a purchase and sign up for a class somewhere.  Definitely not our grandmothers’ treadle machines.

Another stop was Home Goods.  J found a comfy seat in the front of the store, while I looked around.  HG is where I found the navy floral plates ($3.99 each), for my RL inspired table.

We stopped at Barnes and Noble for book browsing and tea, before our return trip home.  

Late Monday afternoon, we received the call from J’s Cardiologist.  His Pro Time numbers were too low.  He’s on another dosage until Monday, when he has another test.  We are hoping the correct dosage has been found, this time.

The Table








Linking to Tablescape Thursday




~An Autumn Appetizer~


Playing with dishes in anticipation.


Fresh Alstroemeria from Kroger.

Votive cups, Michael’s a couple years ago.



Nothing new on the table other than two vases. The tall vase and larger of the small vases are new from Michael’s seasonal clearance. The smallest vase is from a long ago garage sale.

The tray is from All About Home, in our town.




The dinner plate is Autumn Monarch, from Johnson Brothers.

The blue plate is from Home Goods. 

Animal print salad plate from Wal-Mart, several years ago.

The small white plate is one of 6, in a stand, from Home Goods, last year. 

The pumpkins are from Wal-Mart, several years ago. 

I don’t remember where I bought the stemware. 

White luncheon napkin is vintage.



Flatware from Bass Pro Shop. 

Placemats are from Wal-Mart.





Appetizer: A small, light, and usually savory first course in a meal. 

In this instance, a table setting and images to whet the appetite for Autumn.

Thank you all so much for your response to Exterior Design and the Zebra.  You can imagine our surprise!  Definitely unexpected in rural Missouri.