F Simple and Serene Living 09 10
Tuesday, July 19, 2016

FARMER'S MARKETS

We have several farmer's markets where I live, but I think the Sunday market has become my favorite.

farmers market

It is the same market that they hold downtown on Saturday, but the parking is free and it is a bit closer to where I live. 

There is still the same wonderful produce. I love the fresh smells and the warmth of a peach that has been picked that morning.

fresh picked peaches produce farmer Kentucky

It is wonderful to wander down the row of booths and pick from all of the offerings.

Anyone for a juicy heirloom tomato?

heirloom tomato produce summer

Oh and of course we can't forget the entertainment.

It may not be Carnegie Hall, but it is down home folksy Kentucky .

Kentucky entertainment


There is definitely an eggplant tomato casserole in my future this week. You can find the recipe here.

fresh produce vegetables farmer

Do you have a favorite farmer's market in your area?

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Friday, July 15, 2016

LIVE AND LOVE EACH MOMENT

Yesterday brought us another terrible tragedy. This one in Nice, France.


As soon as I heard about it I realized that there was a personal component for me. I knew that my son-in-law's parents are vacationing in Nice this week, and so of course I became very concerned for them. 

They are a part of my extended family and also have become friends. 

More than that, I know how much my three grandchildren love their Grammy and Popup and how devastating it would be for them to lose them. 


Life can be fleeting for any one of us. We really only have the guarantee of this one moment, and so we should embrace it. We should open our arms to it and breathe in its wonderful aroma of love. 

Hate can only be conquered by love and so no matter how much we hate the terrible acts of individuals, there is still so much love in the world. We have the love of our families, our friends, and all of the people in the world, who like us, want love not hate to win out. 


I believe that if each one of us practice living and loving each moment of our lives that all of that love will resonate out into the world. 

I am grateful today that my family members are safe, but I also grieve, with love, for all of the families of the victims of this and other acts of violence, and I pray for the healing of hearts. 


I know that I personally will spend more time consciously living and loving each moment. I hope you will too.

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Monday, July 11, 2016

SIMPLE LIVING MANIFESTO

When I came across this in my Facebook feed a few days ago, I stopped to think about how much of this am I actually practicing.



Eat less, move more. I am eating less, but I am also eating more. That may sound like it doesn't make sense, but what it means is that I am eating very little processed food and eating more natural and organic foods. 



Isn't it wonderful that summer is here and the local farmers provide us with so much to choose from. I am so grateful for their hard work.

I am on a mission to move more. Every day (well almost every day) I am out the door around 7 am to take my morning walk. I may be groaning some days, but I am never sorry once my feet hit the pavement. 


I love how the morning sky is different each day.

Buy less, make more. Well, to be honest I am buying things for my new apartment, but I am trying to buy primarily vintage and antique items and I am selling things I already have so that I am not adding to waste and to hurting the environment. 

I don't do a lot of making my own things anymore unless you count cooking my meals from healthy ingredients.


Stress less, laugh more. I definitely feel less stressed since I have moved into my own apartment, and I am seeking out people who make me laugh more.


That girl knows how to live.

Feel blessed, love more. I am waking up each day remembering all of the things I am blessed with and all of the people I love. 

 
There are many.

Find a quiet spot every day and breathe. This is something I do numerous times throughout the day and I've found it can be done anywhere. 

 
For me, life is so much more serene when it is lived simply.
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P. S. You can find more inspiration  on a Monday here.
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Tuesday, July 5, 2016

GOOD MORNINGS

I love mornings. They have always been my favorite time of the day, and now I love them even more.

One of the reasons is what I see when I walk out of my bedroom each morning. 


I love how my living room is shaping up. I am slowly getting the English cottage look that I want by using things that I have had for many years along with some new purchases. 

It is an eclectic mix that I will share more of later with you. 

Today, I just wanted to show you my first view of the day. A view that puts a smile on my face. 

Oh and I almost forgot. Tomorrow is a special day. It is my granddaughter Tessa's fourth birthday. 

I won't be there, but I left her a special present. One that she made sure I knew she wanted. I hope my daughter will text me a photo of her with it. If she does I will definitely share it with you.

I'll give you a hint. It is pink (her favorite color), has one horn, and is not alive (although she wanted it to be and told me exactly how she would take care of it).



Happy birthday to a funny, sweet, very serious, and very smart girl. 

Wish I was there to celebrate with you. 

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Monday, June 27, 2016

CREATING A SMALL SPACE HOME - MY OLD PINE CUPBOARD

WHEW!! It has taken me six days (not as fast as I used to be), but I have sorted through and put away most of my belongings. 



I am now in the process of starting to do some decorating. After seven years of not having a home of my own I am loving every minute of it. 

Okay, all the bumps and bruises and a possible broken toe haven't been fun, but they will go away and I will hopefully be left with a space that is all mine.

One of the first things I had to do was fix my old pine cupboard. It had been completely shaken apart in transit. The movers, who unloaded for me at the last minute because the original movers I hired didn't bother to show up, looked at it, shook their collective heads, and pronounced it dead. (no, of course I didn't take a before photo)



I just shooed them on their way and told myself that I never give up. However, in this case I thought I might have to call in a furniture restorer, which I definitely can't afford. 

I fixed myself a calming cup of tea, pulled up a chair, and studied it. Thank goodness for my good mechanical skills. 

After pulling out all of the shelves, I figured out which peg went into which slot and got them started on their way. Once I had that done I lifted the bottom piece, and with a hammer I lightly tapped it into place. Voila!!! The entire cupboard just slipped back into its rightful place. 

Once I had all of the shelves back in it was as sturdy as could be. Time to start decorating. 



First thing I did was place the remains of my childhood rocking horse on top. It is over 60 years old and has seen a lot of use, but looking at it makes me smile. 

I had originally planned to put the cupboard in my dining area, but it was just too large, so my fall front desk is in there. I'll show you that another day when I have it ready.



For now I am using a combination of pieces, including some of my white vintage china, white ironstone, and some of the blue and white Dalton china that my father gave my mother when I was growing up. 

My mom gifted the china to me several years ago and I loved pulling out all of the pieces that I had packed away and stored in my sister's garage.


  
I am so happy to have my cupboard back. It fits perfectly into my small space living room. 540 square feet is more than adequate for my needs. 

Now the only thing I need to do is replace one piece of glass that was broken and I will be done with this project for the time being. Believe me, I have plenty more to do. 

It is so much fun being able to decorate again, and I will definitely be sharing it all, so stay tuned.

This also means I will have more time for visiting. Hooray!! 
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P.S. Find more small space living tips here

P.P.S. Visit my small space home here
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Monday, June 20, 2016

THROUGH THE EYES OF A CHILD

Through The Eyes of A Child 
Ah, to see the world through the eyes of a Child,
They seem to make life so simple!
It is through their eyes that there is such a pure honesty in life!
It is their simple understanding and love that one should seek.
They hold no grudge or anger that lasts.
They show their sadness when they are sad,
And they show their love to everyone.
Their minds are not cluttered with trivial things.
To them life is simple and they see it for what it is!
And ah they accept us for who we truly are!
They have the power of knowing who really is true to them.
And when they quarrel everything is said and gone and all is forgiven !!
Their needs and wants are simple,
And they bury the past and go on.
They heal quickly from tragedy as they see it for what it is!
And they smile with delight with all their happiness.
I see their needs are small and but their joys are great!
Ah through the eyes of a child,
We could learn so much.
by MaryP 



Being ill and then spending a week with my grandchildren helped to put life into perspective. 

I was very disappointed when we unloaded my things from North Carolina last week. I realized that yes, the woman who had tried to steal all of my personal property, had indeed stolen many things, and what she hadn't stolen she had done her best to destroy. 

Gone or smashed was most of my great grandmother's china that had been brought over from Germany in the late 1800's. Gone was the beautiful cut glass dish that my grandmother had received as a wedding gift and then lovingly passed on to me when I was married. My furniture was beat up and I literally threw away half of what had been in storage.


I was still able to give some things to my daughters and keep a few things for myself. The truck has arrived here in Kentucky and will be unloaded tomorrow. I will have my work cut out for me working on the furniture, but as I looked around at my family last week I realized I had the most important things. 

So like a child I will bury the past and go on, because the only person I would be hurting by holding a grudge would be me.


Life is meant to be lived with joy, in the moment, and with gratitude. I will be trying hard to do just that.

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Wednesday, June 8, 2016

WHERE'S LAURA?

I know that some of you have been wondering where I have been and why I haven't let you know what is going on.

I can't believe it has been almost a month since I posted, but I have actually been quite ill. 

I contracted some type of bacterial intestinal illness that was extremely virulent and caused me to get colitis. 

green leafy garden arbor

It was the sickest two weeks I have ever spent in my life, and during that time I had what I can only describe as a near death experience. 

Thank goodness for my mother, who brought me things I needed every day and kept on me many times a day to make sure I was hydrating. 

old potting shed leafy bower

I have spent this last week recuperating, and although I am not 100% back to my normal self, I am so much better.

Tomorrow I am packing up my probiotics, Greek yogurt, kombucha tea etc. and heading down to Atlanta. 

My two daughters went to North Carolina last week and oversaw the loading of my storage unit into a You Pack. That You Pack is now sitting in my daughter's driveway and I am going down to spend a week with my family looking through my things and deciding what I want to keep. 

old greenhouse water garden

I think all of the grandchildren hugs and kisses I will get will definitely help in my recovery. 

I will probably not post again until I get back home, but then there may be something I just can't wait to share. 

Thanks so much to those of you who checked on me. I can say that being so ill made me realize what is truly important in life and so I will probably cut back on posting for at least the rest of the summer. 
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Monday, May 16, 2016

BEDROOM CORNER

I've been doing a bit of decorating in my new bedroom. The room is fairly small, about 12 feet by 10.3 feet, but since I downsized to a cozy twin bed it really doesn't seem cramped at all. 

white cottage bedroom

I haven't decided exactly on the bedding yet, so I am still working that out. The room is primarily white and blue with touches of beige. I need a duvet cover and a bed skirt, but I am also reconsidering the bedspread. 

Did you notice my new lamp?

blue white cottage lamp

Guess how much it cost. If you guessed free you would be absolutely correct.  

When I was moving, a man was setting things out in front of the dumpster. Everything looked new and I got several things. This lamp was one of the things I got and I love it. It is perfect for my blue and white bedroom decor. 

I moved my ladder where I hang some of my antique linens to the bedroom. I love it here. 


I tucked a couple of my antique quilts on the bottom shelf of my bedside table.


I haven't really hung much on the walls yet because I am waiting to bring things from North Carolina in a few weeks. 


I am making progress and I am not feeling any pressure to get it done quickly. It is fun to just enjoy the process.

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Friday, May 13, 2016

LIFE IS ALWAYS CHANGING

Life is always changing. It's amazing to me that no matter how old we get there is always room for change.


I have been pretty darned tired the last couple of weeks. Moving is hard, and even though I have moved so often in my adult life, I seem to forget just how hard it really is. 

Add to that the fact that I am getting a wee bit older and I have been having dental work done in the midst of it. It makes a girl just want to nap.


I ran across this new friend on one of my walks this week. I was amazed how unafraid it was. Maybe it has something to do with how serene and calm this place that I am now living is.

I have actually been having pretty much of a blast in my new home. I love my new neighbors. There are 42 apartments where I live and although it is quiet in my apartment, I can find someone to talk to most anytime of the day if I start to feel at all lonely. 


It seems I now have to have a root canal. It will be my first. OUCH!!

After that I plan to head on out and get my things from North Carolina. 

I may be driving a U Haul (won't be my first time) so if you see me just honk and move on over. 

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Friday, May 6, 2016

KITCHEN CORNER SNEAK PEEK

I have been working on setting up my new kitchen this past week. It is the most important room for me to get done, because I am cooking all of my meals.

I took a few photos of one corner, right after I moved in to show you the direction I am taking.  


I won these three little shelves several years ago and packed them away because I wasn't sure what I was going to do with them. 

Since my cupboards are wood, not painted white like my previous kitchens, I thought they would be perfect to hold spices. (which I have since straightened up)

It is fun to go in a new direction with my kitchen decor and I feel like things are just falling together.


I am mixing copper, glass, stainless steel, and wood in this room. I love the eclectic look and it is inviting to be in this fairly small space. 


Just a few quick shots of a work in progress.

I was so tired after the first wave of packing, moving, and unpacking that I have had to rest some this week. My apartment is so quiet and relaxing that I find myself drifting off to sleep at all hours of the day. I am not normally a napper, but I guess my body is letting down from all of the stress. 

Most of this first wave of unpacking is done, but I need my furniture from North Carolina so that I can put the rest of it away. Hopefully I will be able to get that done in a couple of weeks. I need to get it out by the end of the month.


In the meantime, if you are looking for me I will probably be sitting on my new settee staring out at the trees.

Hope you have a wonderful day.

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