Feeling blessed…

I promise a new post on our new coastal Connecticut cottage ( I’d like to come up with a name for it) complete with photos and stories next week. I wanted to take a breath in the midst of this crazy moving process to reflect…

It’s been a long, productive, creative, and bonding few days.  I’m tired and yet energized.  As I write this, I’m in Vermont in my parents oh so welcoming farmhouse, with sleep being elusive as my head is exploding with ideas and thoughts.  I am keenly aware of the many blessings in my life.  My family and friends are my anchor and the source of great joy in my life. I live in not one, but two incredible places, with our new Connecticut cottage being the stuff dreams are made of.  I am so grateful for this little blog as another way to express my ideas which in turn,  led me to Instagram where I have “met” so many of you.  I just wanted to take a moment to put a great big thank you out there to God, the Universe, and to all my friends and family who love and support me in countless ways.   Thank you. 

Guest Post: what I love about The Little Glass House

This week I (Kelsey, Elizabeth’s daughter) have taken over my mom’s blog post, while she has been crazy busy getting the new East Coast abode together. She’s been kind (and crazy?) enough to trust me and a few girlfriends to take a little weekend getaway to The Little Glass House. Santa Barbara is the perfect place to go and recharge. It’s a short drive from Los Angeles (about an hour and a half) but feels like planets away. An hour and a half in LA gets you about two miles on the 405 during rush hour. Driving up the 101 is a beautiful trip in itself and every time I step foot in The Little Glass House, it’s like a breath of fresh air. It has quickly become one of my favorite destinations.

Anyway, I’ve decided to share a brief little compilation of some of my favorite parts about The Little Glass House.

The fire pit 

The fire pit, while beautiful to look at, has also become a place of community and fun. Whether it’s chatting over it with a glass of wine, rounding everyone up after a dinner party to eat dessert around it, or listening to my dad play guitar and my mom sing, so many special and memorable moments happen here.

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Whispering Angel & slippers around the fire pit
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Perfection
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Dad & I having a quiet moment around the fire pit

 

The hot tub

I, for one, was extremely excited when my parents decided to put a hot tub in the plans when they bought the Little Glass House. I had never even heard of a Redwood hot tub before. I’d been in hot tubs made of plastic and stone, but never wood. Everything from the smell and the feel of it is wonderful. The only downside is it’s so difficult to bring yourself to get out, I always end up a wrinkly prune.

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The redwood hot tub (photo from SBdigs)
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You never want to get out, trust me (photo from SB Digs)

 

The nearby hikes & Botanical Garden

One of the best parts of The Little Glass House is you don’t have to drive to get to the mountains or explore in nature. There’s a fantastic hike that’s in walking distance (should you feel ambitious enough to walk the extra mile to get to the trailhead) along with the Botanical Gardens which are just up the road.

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Caught a snap of EDB Designs
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Morning hikes
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Botanical Gardens
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Redwoods in the Botanical Gardens

EDB Designs’ decorating

If you haven’t noticed by now, my mom’s decorating is impeccable. From the vignettes, to the orchids, to the outdoor space. I lived in Santa Barbara for a little while and I remember we got a great deal on a studio to rent through a family friend. Upon seeing it for the first time, I started crying. It was dark and dismal and sort of looked like a crack den. However, my mom assured me that she could make it cool. And she did. She turned it into the most lovely little apartment. She really has a magic touch.

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One of many vignettes
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I will take credit for forcing her to buy that little orange surfboard

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Santa Barbara in general

 

Lastly, the Little Glass House is located in one of the most beautiful little corners of California, and maybe even the United States. Santa Barbara needs no explanation. This house is as special as where it lives. I can’t wait to be there.

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Beach walks
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Butterfly Beach
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View from the Court House
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Sunset at The Little Glass House

favorite shop: green peak elements

Since posting photos of my parents Vermont farmhouse, I’ve fielded questions about the vintage lighting in their kitchen and entry hall.  In the center of Manchester, Vermont is a gem of a shop chock full of everything from lights that owner Brad Andres customizes for his clientele, to all manner of quirky interesting finds.  Green Peak Elements is also a veritable gold mine for those seeking antiques and collectibles!

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Green Peak Elements   photo: Brad Andres

When I saw my parents lighting, I knew I had to check out this shop.

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Vintage lighting from Green Peaks Elements in my parents farmhouse kitchen

I wanted to buy some vintage pendants for our new old Connecticut home.  Brad was extremely helpful and knowledgeable.  He can customize the lighting, the color of the chain and ceiling plate. He also suggested the size of the pendants and the length of chain needed. After happily choosing my fixtures, I spotted an old gray metal counter stool that I thought would be perfect for our new home. I can’t wait to show it to you in a future post!

If you are in the Manchester area, this shop is certainly worth a stop. What it lacks in size, it more than makes up for in quantity of fascinating items from rural New England as well as custom lighting.  For those of you who don’t live near Manchester, you’re in luck! Brad has a cool Etsy shop bradandres . In fact, I just ordered some old boat cleats that I’m going to use as towel hooks for our outdoor shower!  Happy shopping…

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photo: Brad Andres

 

Green Peak Elements

4935 Main Street

Manchester, VT  05255

802-768-1173

 

 

vermont farmhouse part two

This week, I thought I’d share a few more photos of the progress at my parent’s Vermont farmhouse.  The two of them have been very busy since my visit in June. They are a dynamic duo, my dad the carpenter, and my mom with the creative flair. Here are a few of the changes…

The reclaimed barn wood siding has gone up on the fireplace wall. The tiny black spots are old nail holes.

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The fireplace wall is finished with doors that hide the giant television.

The gorgeous kitchen sink is hooked up and work will begin soon to make the booths and the galvanized top table for the breakfast nook. But first my dad has to finish building the book cases that are opposite the wall of glass in the living room.

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Still awaiting the breakfast nook booth.

My parents master bedroom is awaiting some finishing touches although we had some successful antique outings where we purchased a chippy white bedside table and a large cabinet to store linens. My mom and I will tackle this room on my next visit.

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A glimpse of the not quite finished master bedroom…

The master bath is nearly finished except for the vintage claw foot tub that is up on sawhorses in the garage.  My mom is prepping it to be painted. I can’t wait to see it all cleaned up!

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A peek at the master bath

The front door got a coat of black paint and a new screen door to welcome friends and family.

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The front entry hall
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Another view of the entry

A lot of progress was made outside. The circular driveway went in and the new flag pole was erected in the center of the round lawn. As of this post, the outside of the house is being painted white. The gray is just a primer. And yes, my parents are doing a lot of the painting themselves.  I was relieved that they hired someone to do the high parts!

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Early morning at the farmhouse
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The cozy front porch and the newly built barn doors on the garage.

The day my husband and I arrived to celebrate my birthday, they had just finished putting in a fire pit and the gravel patio. While it was too warm for a fire that night, we christened the patio by sitting in the adirondack chairs with a bottle of rosé and a million dollar view.

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The stunning view from the farmhouse

Though the chicken coop doesn’t house chickens any longer (its my mom’s garden shed) it sure is cute!

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The coop

I bought them a few more pillows from my talented friend Jody’s Etsy shop,  INDIEbungalow  to finish off the very comfortable sectional where my parents can at last rest at the end of their long work days.

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New pillows are the finishing touch

Now if we could only come up with a name for this inviting home chock full of loving detail.  My parent’s threw out names like Journey’s End and Over the Hill, but I don’t think that either represent the stamina and magic making capabilities of these two people who only keep getting better with age.  Any ideas?

Our new east coast beach bungalow

I didn’t dare share this until we closed on the house. I was sure that I would jinx the whole thing.

On my last visit to Connecticut in June, it came to our attention that a few homes had become available in a small coastal area near our rented townhouse. This is a community that rarely sees houses come on the market and so we decided to check a few of them out.

The homes are primarily bungalows, most no larger than 1500 square feet with small yards and just a half a block away from Long Island Sound.

The first house was a bit of an odd layout and needed major updating with a high price tag.  The next one was a completely different story. The owners had tastefully updated it with a new kitchen and bathroom and had redone some of the plumbing and electrical.  It was a very traditional 1922 bungalow with 3 bedrooms and 1 1/2 baths. We were both excited by it’s small size, front porch, and tiny backyard complete with hydrangeas and a large lilac bush! We were smitten.

Today it officially became ours and though it is lovely, we will be making a few changes to the master bedroom, new paint inside and out, and some landscaping in the back come spring. It will mean downsizing from our rental townhouse and many trips this fall for the move and pulling it together.

We are so excited to own a little piece of New England. Stay tuned for progress reports on Instagram !

The end of our new street