Just A Bit of News

 It has been a bit of a blogging drought around here and I have been trying to catch up but haven't been able to quite fit everything in. 
As soon as I can I will get up to speed 
Lots of change and interesting things happening....and unfortunately my Mac bit the dust and I haven't had a chance to replace it, so many of my photos are in limbo right now 

But...all is good and fall is finally here with beautiful cool mornings and a chance to garden again after a scorcher of a summer
We have a new fountain in the parterre garden and the roses have all been moved to new locations because of the changing shade and sun from the large oak trees.  
 Each of the quadrants will have a large pot with a boxwood topiary and then underplanted with hydrangeas.  The surrounding hedges have filled in and seem to be loving the new shaded area.
The canopy has grown so thick that the roses were not all that happy.  A good problem for the oaks but the roses were really "leggy" and not thriving as they should.  Moving roses is not my favorite job but I think I only lost two out of about 30 plants.  I have one bed left to move but it will be easy now that the weather is cooler.
 We decided to add a small dining area in the main living room of the house.  It's small but cozy and I like the big gas station pennants above the old pine table.  
 Two great old chairs from a Maine cottage on the ends and a large Swedish pine bench and an antique plate rack above.

Some how the odd assortment of wicker seems to fit.  Lots of pillows and ticking are just right in this small intimate space.  
 Over the summer I worked on the rear perennial beds.  Sculpting and removing sod and adding more flowers and interesting foliage 

 Throughout the year the beds will have color and new plants and bulbs.
 Apart from the vegetable beds the perennial beds are my favorite part of this garden.  Lots of work but always great rewards.

The lavender acts as a nice backdrop to the new plants and adds height to the beds and I really enjoy the color and interest that the variety of plantings provide.  It is also a never ending supply of things for arranging in little vases.
I hope you are enjoying a lovely fall....my favorite time of the year !!!!

See you soon



Summer Wonderful

 With summer winding to a slow soft close and the temperatures still warmer than I like 
I try to cook with all of the garden stragglers

 The tomatoes were especially sweet and plentiful this year 
and my favorite was a small orange cherry.   
I planted a wonderful variety of radish called D'Avignon.  
It is spicy and flavorful and wonderfully crunchy. 
 I've used it on every thing from sandwiches to pizza.

 These radish are really beautiful too
 They pop up from the ground like little red footballs 
and continue to ripen above the soil.

 Some of the onions I dried and others I used fresh
through out the summer

 So to keep the kitchen cool and use up 
what the garden has so generously shared 
I thought I'd make a
Tabbouleh salad
 Tabbouleh is a Lebanese salad made with bulgur wheat, herbs and tomatoes.  
It generally has more herbs than grain 
but you can play around with this recipe to suit your taste.
 The dressing consists of just olive oil and lemon juice...and don't forget salt and fresh pepper

 For the greens I used wild arugula 
which I have tons of right now
 Some basil and mint
 and lots of parsley

 Adding some radish is not really traditional but hey...use what you have!
Cucumber is a nice addition and green scallions are optional 
but I had them, so in they went!

 Prepare your bulgar according to the package directions so you have about 2 cups 
 Then chop, chop chop the rest of your veggies
 I had about 5 cups of veggies and about 4 cups of greens and herbs
 Mix it all together and add the bulgar
Finish off with olive oil...about 1/4 cup and the juice of 2 lemons
Season to taste
I actually like this a bit more acidic so I added some champagne vinegar too
  Let this rest for about an hour to allow the bulgar to absorb all of the flavors 
Serve in butter lettuce cups with grilled naan bread or pita chips

It's just that simple

hope your summer has been wonderful



Nancy Fischelson Architectural Designer: Part 1

 Every day I read posts on blogs that allow a glimpse into beautiful homes 
more often than not 
we never really know about the creative process  
and more importantly 
we never really know much about these renovators, architects
and designers

The interiors that stand out amongst the millions of photos we see
 in magazines, books and on the internet,
are those special images
that capture our imaginations
possess  a style that is timeless

Those homes are as captivating today as years ago
and I dare say we long for more pictures and more houses...
that have that certain
which we can't seem to get out of our head
 I received an email about a month ago regarding one such person 
whom I so greatly admire 
named Nancy Fischelson

Her work is timeless, humble and graceful

Her work doesn't shout...
it is a whisper of enjoyable collections, neutral pure colors
and serene light filled rooms

 I had the opportunity to speak with Nancy for couple of hours 
and I am so happy to share some
of her thoughts and insights with you
Nancy calls herself an Architectural Designer 
  She draws elevations when needed 
and passes those on to a draftsman or structural engineer 
if the project warrants it

Her career saving and remodeling old houses 
started with a wonderful friendship 
with a contractor in Los Angeles 
some 20 years ago
 You remember this house right?
A little bungalow in Venice California
 This house is full of salvaged windows, doors and fixtures 
which make it a simple and inviting and interesting space.  

She always opens up a floor plan as much as possible, 
sometimes loosing bedrooms in the process
to accommodate more visually open and light filled rooms

Another renovation in Mar Vista California
 Wonderful light filled rooms and beautiful old American furniture

 An awesome antique mantle 
with an architectural fragment above

If you look at most of Nancy's living rooms 
you will usually see the most incredible mantels,
and full of charm character 

She is a collector and Antique dealer as well 
and has a great eye for the 
"simple" form and shape
of objects and furniture
 A lovely old home in Park City Utah built in 1898
 I never told Nancy this but I know this house!
I lived in Park City for about 3 years and some friends of mine rented it...what a small world!
It didn't look quite like this but I loved it even then.

 Nancy was collecting and using French sheets, linens  and grain sacks well over 15 years ago 
when no one knew what to do with them

She credits her mother for her love of white slipcovers 
as her mother always used them in her childhood home 
in the summer time.  
Another LA project
A cluster of 5 small building and garages

Los Angeles again...a home filled with Americana, folk art and signage
Another one of her beautiful mantles
 Nancy's color pallet is always neutral tones of white and grey, 
with an emphasis on texture

 Her interiors are always interesting with so much character
and allow for  space to move
 Nancy's told me she is a bit claustrophobic 
which is why she feels more comfortable 
in open clean spaces

Next up...Nancy moves East 
and more thoughts on her design and renovation process, 
future projects
and how her style has evolved

I'll hurry back 

xo kelley
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