Today I shall tell you a story about a girl who went on a magical vacation. She hoped and dreamed and read and planned.

Then she packed a small bag.

Then she said goodbye to her little blue house and pink rosebush and her family and friends.

She traveled very far, and came down in a fairyland which was vaguely familiar, but very different and special too. (It helped that there was ice cream and other tasty things to eat.) She ate some scones, some pastries, and quite a few cheese and onions.

And drank lots of tea.

And explored.

And took hundreds of photos so that she'd remember the wonderful place.

And she wrote letters to home telling everyone how beautiful it was there.

And then, sadly, it was time to go. So she packed her things up again, carefully putting in some lovely newfound treasures.

When she arrived back home, she found that even though the magical place she'd been was enchanting, she'd missed her friends and family and little blue house and pink rosebush.
And she was glad to be home.

I hope you enjoyed my story.
And I hope that you'll excuse my absence here for a couple of weeks while I'm having adventures in a magical fairyland.

(All images by Cassia Beck, pulled from the Lola's Room Etsy shop.)


Pretty Things for Your Friday

I hope this will make up for sporadic posting this week. Have a lovely weekend, friends!

Psssssst! Don't forget to enter the giveaway before Sunday night!


A Different Kind of Giveaway

As I mentioned yesterday, friends, I thought I might give you a more detailed picture of the fabulous adventures we're planning for our Great English Adventure next week. I also realized yesterday that I've just posted my 300th blog post, and wanted to find a means of celebrating. So, I came up with an idea for a different kind of giveaway: leave a comment on this post before Sunday, May 16th at 10:00pm, and I'll draw a name. The lucky winner will receive a small souvenir from our trip, and if you like, you can even choose which of the five wonderful cities we're visiting you'd like your memento to come from!

Here are the details.
Destination One: Bath
On our Agenda: the Roman Baths and Pump Room, the Royal Crescent, and a Cotswolds tour

Destination Two: Stratford-on-Avon
On our Agenda: Romeo and Juliet at the RSC Courtyard Theatre, a stroll along the river, and a visit to Shakespeare's Birthplace

Destination Three: Chipping Campden
On our Agenda: a sunny room in a beautiful little Bed and Breakfast, bicycling around the countryside, the charms of an old market village

Destination Four: Oxford
On our Agenda: Blenheim Palace, The Eagle and Child, views of the city from a 13th century church tower

Destination Five: London
On our Agenda: Macbeth at the Globe, dozens of museums, and the Chelsea Flower Show

My giveaway offer has some runner-up winners as well: I'll send postcards to the first three people to a leave comment on this post!

Pretty Things

I saw this incredible chandelier today over at OhJoy, and thought you might love it too.

Isn't that the coolest thing ever!? I would LOVE to have that hanging in a sunny window in my house, preferably near a cozy reading chair.


Etsy Treasure Tuesday: My Paper Garden

Guess what, people! A week from today, we leave on our fabulous English vacation! I've been busy sorting out the details of the itinerary, booking tickets for some of the many plays we're going to see, and trying to plan so that we make the most of our few days in one of my favorite places in the world. More details on where we're going and what we'll be doing tomorrow.

But for now, I have an exceptionally appropriate shop to share with you for our Etsy Treasure Tuesday post. My Paper Garden takes maps, vintage papers and stamps, and a bit of artful stitching and turns them into wonderful, practical little works of art. {I saw a spread in Martha Stewart Living several years ago where an entire wall of a little boy's room had been papered with old maps, and I've been drawn to their functional coolness ever since.} Wouldn't it be fabulous to have a passport cover or a "dream vacation" file made out of maps of the places you've been or want to go? Just have a look at some of the fantasticness.

I love the wonderful paper flower details, and I think I'm going to have to order a set of those amazing nesting baskets to use in my new workroom.

(All images pulled from MyPaperGarden's Etsy shop.)

One more thing: what is your dream vacation destination?


Small Reminder

Fellow Lubbockites,
Celebrate the glorious end of another semester and a beautiful spring day by enjoying yourself this evening at our very own First Friday Art Trail! I'll be at Alderson Mercedes, as always, on 17th and Texas Avenue, with quite a few new pieces to show off (including my new self-designed business cards). Please come out and say hello; it will be lovely to see all of you!

(Princess necklace, and photo, by me.)

Happy May!

I think it would be just about impossible to find anything prettier than Livy's sweet May-themed flower cone to post here today. Livy writes, "Since last Saturday was May Day, I thought I'd delve into its history a little. "Chapter IV: May Day" in The Original Girls Handy Book (a reprint of a book published in 1887), had a few things to say about "a very pretty custom observed in Merrie England of fastening bunches of flowering shrubs and branches upon the doors of neighbors." The author writes of the surviving tradition in New England, of "hanging upon the door-knobs of friends spring-offerings in the shape of small baskets filled with flowers."

(All images, design, and photos by Livy of A Field Journal, posted here.)
Ah, I could stare at them all day.


And what's so wrong with being personal, anyway?

Did any of you catch that? Movie quote; one of my favorites. I'll let you ruminate for a while. Yes, ruminate.

Meanwhile ...
12 Random Facts You May Not Know About Me:
• I never wear socks unless I’m getting in bed with cold feet.
•  have a dimple on the tip of my nose. (It gets worse.) A little white hair grows in there.
• I have a loud, unlady-like sneeze.
• I equate mowing the grass to being tortured by the fellows that ran the Spanish Inquisition.
• I have perfected an expression my brother used to call “the dead beaver face.”
• I have nice cursive handwriting, but I don’t like my printed hand.
• I never wear nail polish on my hands, and never go without it on my toes.
• My favorite shade of toenail polish is bright pink. It makes my feet even whiter in contrast, but I know it's no use trying to fool anybody.
• I’m a creature of habit.
• I’m addicted to chap stick. My favorite is Bonnie Bell’s Red Raspberry. When they stopped selling it at the one place in town I could still find it, my husband ordered me a whole box online.
• I’m addicted to Pilot P-500 Extra-Fine Blue Ink pens. I haven’t used anything else since high school. When they stopped selling them at the one place in town I could still find them, my husband ordered me a whole box online.
• For a while I didn’t believe in feelings. Then I met Nathan.
I'll have something more exciting for you tomorrow, friends. Promise.


Etsy Treasure Tuesday: Iviemade

I am so happy to introduce to you today a new online friend of mine, Elizabeth. I've already discovered that she and I would be very good friends if we actually knew each other in real life, as evidenced by the fact that she shares with me a love of Jane Austen and wonderful English classics, Anthropologie, and the same sarcastic sense of humor. Unlike me, however, she is an incredibly talented seamstress, and in her beautiful shop, iviemade, she sells handmade pillow covers embellished with two of my favorite things: ruffles and bows. Elizabeth's having a fantastic anniversary sale in her shop right now, and also a giveaway on her blog, so you should visit, and then you'll read, and then you'll giggle, and then you'll want to be friends with her too.

And this dress now resides, sadly, in the "Sold" section of the iviemade shop. {Sigh.} I loved that dress.

Also, another thing Elizabeth and I have in common is that we love old things. All the rest of you vintage lovers out there will be happy to know that Elizabeth has recently opened a second Etsy shop, iviefound, in which she retails her own vintage finds (found in Boston, one of my favorite cities in this country, I might add).

Your homework: enter the giveaway today!


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