My Asian Theme

Today I had a beautiful lunch made by our Thai chef.

Crispy spring rolls serves with sweet red sauce.

She made spring rolls to enjoy with salad and squash soup.

The neckline is an unusual u-shape.

The theme started earlier in the week when I received a thank you gift of a beautiful vintage rose silk kimono.

Basting threads are evident at the base of the sleeves.

I don’t think it has ever been worn because the sleeves still have the basting threads in tact.

The interior silk is flowery and bright.

The inside is even more visually spectacular than the exterior.

The rose silk brocade is highlighted with gold threads.

I’m not sure if I should wear it or display it in a shadow box on the wall.

Do you have a favorite Asian food?

Ah, The Floor Challenge

After a mildly successful weekend of clearing the bedroom floor of clutter I’ve decided to challenge myself to do the entire house.

The living room has been clean and straightened for months. Don’t ask me how.

The living room is in good shape. One down.

The dining room floor is also clear. Woo hoo.

The dining room is also clear and vacuumed.

The space between the loveseats has a large black mark that needs attention.

The two floors that need attention are those in the conservatory and the kitchen.  The conservatory’s white rug needs to be shampooed.

The kitchen floor needs a good, deep cleaning.

And the wooden floor in the kitchen needs to be cleaned.  The rugs have been off for awhile because they need cleaning.

The rug and its twin need shampooing also.

Since they are all small area rugs that shouldn’t be too challenging.

The former floordrobe in my bedroom.

How are your floors? Meaning:

  1. Can you see them? And if you can,
  2. Are they clean?

New Piano Pins

The Steinway baby grand circa 1906 in the living room at work has been having trouble holding a tuning.

Charlie plays the Steinway on Monday evenings.

Our tuner/technician said the pins which hold the strings are slipping so they need to be replaced with slightly larger diameter pins and new bushings.

Piano pins come in incremental sizes and can be replaced when the holes are worn too large.

There are 250 pins which hold the strings taut to create the correct pitch.

The new pins are larger and shinier than the old ones.

Each one is taken out and replaced with a new one then the piano wire is rewound around the pin and tightened.

The gold harp and strings are both intricate and beautiful.

The metal pins are beat in with a metal hammer.

The technician removed the keyboard.

Two days of clanging and banging before the piano could be lightly tuned.

Playable but needs another tuning.

The tuner is coming back to retune in a couple of days because a newly pinned piano takes a while to maintain the tune.

What’s your instrument?

June 20

Two years ago on June 2oth we were getting ready to wallpaper the dining room.

The dining room before wallpaper.
The top of the dining room is now papered.

Now it’s papered.

Without a backsplash the master vanity looked unfinished.
The backsplash is very practical.

Last year on the same date I was choosing tile for the master bathroom backsplash. Now that’s also finished.

The back stairs to the conservatory could actually become a full deck.

Making progress but also thinking up new projects.

Have you got an outdoor deck? What special detail do you recommend adding? Leaving out?

Barking Orchids

From time to time I have written about the orchids I am nursing along.

Orchid in full bloom

All my orchids have been gifts or hand-me-downs so I’m not invested in them except that our kitchen seems to have the perfect light for growing and regrowing orchids.

Orchids thrive in the kitchen bump-out and also attract ants.

On Saturday I poured a cup of water into an orchid pot our kitchen table when the whole thing started to move.  It turns out that ants had decided to build a condominium in the potting medium and when I poured water on it they had to hurry up and move all the eggs.

The ant-infested roots were totally bared to rid them of the little pests.

I, in turn, hurried the entire pot outside and shook away the bark it had been planted in.  Then I hung the orchid in a tree as my sister does in Florida.

The broken orchid branch is now in a vase.

Unfortunately I broke the blooms off.

The potting mix is composed of bark, charcoal, and perlite.

I bought a sack of Orchid bark to use as a potting medium since orchids don’t like the denseness of dirt.

The roots are now entangled in the bark.

Now I am repotting the bare-root orchid and hoping I have also diverted the ants back outside.

Do your houseplants attract bugs? And what do you do about it?

Need Suggestions for Foundation Plants

I need some advice for plants that would work well around the foundation of the house.

The yard needs to be landscaped.

Ever since the renovation the land around the house has been mostly dusty and devoid of plants.

These are the only plants in place — hydrangeas and one American boxwood original to the house.

I was thinking that we might hire a landscape designer who would tell us what to plant where.

Charlie always prepares well for planting.

Then we would do the work.

We really need help.

How do I find a landscape designer?

We can move azaleas from the yard that used to be around the house.

Do you have favorite shrubs?

It Didn’t Rain

I was planning to paint but the forecast predicted rain.

The formerly messy corner of my bedroom.
Look! A place to sit and put on my shoes.

I stayed in and cleaned up some of my clothes.

Only the shingles remain to be painted.

My friend in the Cottage tried to get some painting in before the rain.

Loving the fresh paint.

She primed and painted all the exterior trim and the blue/grey panels on the front of the Cottage.

This shutter decorates the side of the Cottage.

The exterior shutter is painted and ready to rehang after the shingles are painted.

What incentive do encourages you to get started finish a project?