A few weeks ago my friend Megan and I went into Belfast and poked around the wonderful shops there. We walked past one shop that I had never been into, and I was attracted to the sign by the door. It said that everything in the store was made in America, even the fixtures and shelving. What a neat idea! Of course we went in. There was beautiful pottery, wonderfully displayed. And I saw this:
It's a bean pot,lovingly hand crafted with a lid that fits to perfection. It is the sort of pot one would slowly bake beans in on a cold winter day. I have few memories of my grandmother, Marion Waters, because she died when I was six. But I do remember her immaculate house, decorated with polished Colonial type antiques. To my mind it always smelled like molasses kissed beans baking. I wanted to learn to make baked beans the way she did. Fast forward a whole lot of years and one of my favorite guys invited us over to have dinner at their house. He had made a pot of beans,and they were delicious. I was quite impressed and told him I wanted to learn to make them, too. He very generously gave me a bean pot. His mother had given it to him, and I loved it because it was the color of the one you see here, but without the decorative vine. I had never seen one that color before. They are usually sort of a two tone brown and beige, not my favorite. I made one pot of beans, and they were pretty good. Before I could make another pot our bad Boxer dog jumped up on the table and smashed my gifted pot. I was bereft and have spent a couple years looking for one like it, with no success. So I was delighted to discover this pot, and splurged a little to bring it home. I can hardly wait to try it out.
My sister Deb came to visit last weekend. She helped me cut the soap that I blogged about in the last post. It is now curing under an old linen cloth, and my kitchen smells of lavender. Deb announced that she wanted to have a project while she was here. She is good at a lot of things, but sitting still is not one of them. I mentioned that I had never really gotten my porch into good shape this year, and maybe we could tidy it up. We use the porch a lot for the Thanksgiving holiday, it makes a nice walk in refrigerator most years! My idea was that we'd dust and vacuum and make things look neater. HER idea was to take most everything out of the room and then bleach down the walls from ceiling to floor! I discovered, to my deep chagrin, that my poor porch had a lot more clutter than I had realized. We took all the nick knacks and decorations off and dumped them in the middle of the dining room table.
Ugh! So much stuff. I have been washing my favorite pieces this week, and today I will go through and "edit," boxing up many items to take to Goodwill. Meanwhile the porch is a large, empty space now.
Here is the view to the left as you enter:
And to the right:
This porch is what made me fall in love, hard, with this house when we saw it on a dreary March day 10 years ago. I could picture sitting here, smelling the perfume from the then barren lilac bushes that were ratting in the cold wind outside the window. I could imagine summer suppers while the sun set and long chats over a companionable glass of wine with friends. It is a wonderful space and I am happy that my sister helped me clear things up so the space is more welcoming. I will be careful about what goes back out here.