Thursday, June 28, 2012

Birthday Celebrations

Patrick surprised me on the Saturday morning before my birthday with a present sitting on top of our antique radio in the living room. From all appearances it seemed to be a shoe box. I was gitty at thought of receiving the L.K. Bennett heels but admittedly deep down a little twinge of sadness snuck in thinking I wouldn't be getting the camera. Upon picking up the present though the weight of the box was a little suspect. I unwrapped the shoe box to find it said Rockport instead of L.K. Bennett. Patrick was up to his usual tricks. It was the Canon EOS 60D!!!! 

After stopping off at the local farmer's market for the deliciouslemon sugar crepes we headed to the Washington Park Arboretum to play with my new toy.  Patrick brought his Sony SLR camera as well.  We strolled out along the Foster Island trail.  Stopping now and again to take photographs.  Patrick was very helpful in providing me tips on how to adjust for different lighting and focus points.  We then made our way towards Marsh Island but true to its name the trail was more marshland than trail.  Without wellies to keep our feet dry and a little Cavalier to think of we turned back.  This was Daisy's first visit to the arboretum.  Her ears were perked, tail high and wagging, nose low sniffing around everywhere.  She seemed to being having just as much fun as we were.  The Wilcox Footbridge was our destination.  A couple with a small baby girl were having a portrait session along the bridge so we waited until the coast was clear and took a few photos there ourselves.  By this time our tummies were grumbling and so we packed up and headed home. 

The next afternoon found us on Kirkland Argosy day cruise.  The winds were blowing strong on the lake making for great sailing weather.  We saw a number of sailing boats out enjoying the day.  This leisurely cruise took us along the shores of the lake exploring some of the neighborhoods of Seattle and the east side.   One of the highlights included Bill Gates' home.  As the boat slowed in front of his house I saw a man strolling the grounds.  Perhaps it was Bill Gates himself!  His house is the reddish one with the adirondack chairs in front. 

My birthday day started quietly with tea in my favorite tea cup and a beautiful bouquet of peonies picked up at the farmer's market a couple days before.  Then it was off to celebrate my dear friend Teresa at her graduation ceremony from graduate school. 

Needless to say there was a lot of pomp and circumstance for this lady's birthday!!!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Birthday Wish List

Someone has a birthday quickly approaching (fingers pointing at myself) and I was asked to share a detailed wish list.  Here are a few things my heart is desiring.

1. Beautiful deck furniture to lounge in while meditating, reading or having tea in my serene back garden. (Cost Plus World Market has a nice set.)

2. Heels to walk around like a princess(L.K. Bennett Sledge Court Shoes Taupe - I wear a size 9 and am not quite sure what that translates to in UK sizing.  Found in the US at Nordstrom.)  

3.  A camera to capture the simple joys of life.  (Canon EOS 60D or other similiar high quailty camera.  A point and shoot camera as a staple in my purse would be nice as well.)

4.  A book for dreaming of the English countryside.  (Jasper Conran's Country perferably the UK edition found on Amazon UK.)

5.  Magazine subscription for inspiration in creating my own English style home.  (The English Home magazine so I don't have to continue buying every couple of months from my local Barnes and Noble.)

Other things that have been catching my eye around the internet of late:

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Wild Flower Studies

As spring has progressed I have thoroughly enjoyed watching the wild flowers come out slowly bit by bit.  Each one adding their voice to the chorus of spring and the summer to come.  Wild Flower Studies by Bessie D. Inglis was first borrowed from the library at time when there were little in the way of wild flowers gracing the hiking paths.  I poured over the beautiful watercolor illustrations trying to understand how to identify these lovely creatures.  Hoping that I could gain a, "familiarity with these [to make] it easy to recognise the plants themselves on a first meeting."  The section on 'The Structure of Plants' was quite informative, simply illustrated, and a wonderful way to get my feet wet in the field of botany.

Over the weekend my small family took a short walk on the open paths surrounding our home.  As we went I bent down to collect a sampling the wild flowers that have been capturing my heart.  Daisy wasn't sure what to make of me and my treasures in hand.  She would jump up on my leg and rustle about impatiently every time I stopped to pick another wild flower.  Normally we walk at a pretty brisk pace and I'm the one reminding her to stop sniffing about the bushes and get on with the act of walking.  It was if we had reversed roles. 

Once at home the hand picked bouquet was placed in one of my favorite little pitchers.  Unfortunately we had some dinner plans so time did not allow for me to sit and study as I had wanted until this morning.  Amongst my collection I gathered hop clover, red clover, ox-eye daisies, bulbous buttercups, dog rose, and a couple others that I wasn't able to identify. 

Tomorrow I will be forced to return Bessie's lovely book as my library's policy of three renewals has run out.  Bessie and her illustrations have brought me a lot of comfort this spring season.  Hopefully I can continue the study of the wild flowers.