Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Ring Out the Old, Ring In the New


My New Year's resolutions were going to be the same as always--lose weight, exercise, eat more fruit, blah blah blah. Now that I'm 61-years old, it's probably a good idea to work on my cholesterol, too. In fact, you'd probably be reading about that right now if I hadn't had an epiphany.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Two Bespoke Kitchens

This Sunday we're touring two stunning bespoke kitchens.

Our tour starts in a "cook's kitchen" in Hampshire, England, and the workmanship is a shining example of "bespoke," which is an old English word for custom made or "tailor made." Inspired by unfitted vintage kitchens, bespoke pieces are as individual as thumbprints. The cabinets are often made of different materials, styled a bit differently, and can be painted or stained different colors.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Foodie Friday and Everything Else Link Party--Special Holiday Edition


Happy Holidays!
This week, Foodie Friday is a little early. The link-up will be available all week, closing Saturday, December 27th. You may contribute any day--no limit--and with any kind of post.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Tour of Christmas Doors -- Winter Solstice 2014

   

Our "Christmas Tour of Doors" begins on the Winter Equinox, 
the shortest day (and longest night) of the year. If you blink, you'll miss the sun as it races across the sky. Like a magical creature from Alice's Wonderland, daylight is "late for a very important date." 
And that date is December 21st, the first day of winter, when dawn takes its own sweet time, and dusk falls swiftly, like a knife cutting through warm cheese. Incidentally, if you go outside at noon, your shadow will be the longest one you've cast in 2014. So, there's that, at least.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

A Tour of Christmas Lights

You're Cordially Invited 
to a 
Tour of Christmas Lights. 








Christmas is the most spectacular time of the year. When I was a child, it was a family tradition to drive around town and admire everyone's decorations. On those short, dark days of December, the dazzling lights seem to push back the darkness and create a cozy glow behind my eyes. I would kneel in the backseat, pressing my nose against the window, my breath fogging the glass, trying to memorize every detail. 

Thursday, December 18, 2014

The Foodie Friday Plus Everything Else Holiday Party



Welcome to the Foodie Friday
Plus
Everything Else Holiday Party.

During the holidays, you're invited to share recipes, DIY projects, crafts, tablescapes, time saving tips, and everything else you think will be helpful to readers. This includes your link parties, give-aways, reviews, and sponsored posts. 
Older, seasonal posts are welcome, too. No limit.

Christmas falls on a Thursday this year, so I'm bumping up next week's Foodie Friday. The link will be available Monday, December 22rd at 7 p.m. Central.


Popular Features from Last Week's Party
Wives with Knives' Buttery Spritz Cookies.
All I can say is...more please!



Cooking with K's Millionaire Fudge 
Granny's Tried and True Recipe.


Upstate Ramblins' Christmas Candy Trees
A delight for children of all ages.

Are you contributing to this week's Foodie Friday?

During the holidays, we're inviting you to share recipes, DIY projects, time saving tips, crafts, tablescapes, and everything else (including your link parties, give-aways, reviews, and/or sponsored posts). Old posts are welcome. No limit.

To add a link, find the blue Inlinkz icon in the lower, left-hand portion of this post. Click on the icon and follow the directions, which includes selecting a thumbnail image. After you complete the process, you may see a red "x" (or mark) beside your name. This allows you to delete your link if you've made an error; the red "x" is visible to you only.

If you need more assistance, an UPDATED guide to this linky party can be read HERE.

Share your food photos with a larger community at the Pinterest board, Top Food Bloggers.  Send me a message @ Pinterest if you'd like to join.

Thanks so much for sharing your delicious recipes and inspiring projects every week. I hope your holidays are merry and bright.

The Foodie Friday and Everything Else Link Party

Thanks for stopping by Rattlebridge Farm.


Foodie Friday Party Invitation


You're invited to party with us tonight at Foodie Friday!

Share your awesome links:
Recipes
DIY Ideas
Tips
Crafts
Tablescapes
and Everything Else!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Ranchburger Renovation Diary #1

 And so it begins . . . . a new kitchen adventure.
For the last few months, I've been working on a renovation game-plan.
This time, I worked with an architect, and we agreed that the 8' kitchen ceiling "matched" the wonderful mood of the house--warm, cozy, and cottage-like. However, the old windows needed updating. Rather than adding new casements, the architect pointed to the wonderful view and suggested that I blow out the windows and cabinets and add floor-to-ceiling doors. Since the kitchen opens onto a porch, I really liked this idea--I imagined eating fried sage leaves at at small wicker table and watching the moon rise.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

A Southern Christmas



This Sunday, we're looking at homes that have been decorated by Tobi Fairley, a Little Rock, Arkansas, interior designer. "Bright, bold, and tailored" are the cornerstones of her philosophy--with a timeless Southern flair. 

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Simple, Fresh Design


One morning, I was searching for kitchen ideas on Pinterest, and I saw a photograph that bowled me over. I imagined walking in my sock-feet over those polished floors. I could almost feel the smooth edge of the counter and the sturdy round knobs. What would I put in the drawers? Cookie cutters, rolling pins, measuring cups. The powder blue armoire added a soft, beguiling touch of color in this neutral space.
Oh, how I loved this room.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Foodie Friday -- December 11

Thanks for joining us at the December 11th Foodie Friday!

I just returned from the grocery and wanted to share some adorable, festive goodies.



I'll have one of each--how about you?

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Tour the River Dunes Captain's House



This Sunday, our armchair traveling takes us to a former Coastal Living Magazine's "Idea House" in Oriental, North Carolina. Facing Grace Harbor, the three-story home was designed to resemble a 19th century coastal mansion, offering wrap-around porches--and a cupola, where you can see all the way to Pamlico Sound.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Foodie Friday -- December 5th



Welcome to Foodie Friday!
How was your holiday? Have you been busy baking? Decking the halls? Or looking up recipes for leftover turkey?


I was just thinking today how much I love December.
It's the season for hot tea and candles.

It's the time for mincemeat tarts.

It's the most wonderful time of the year for tablescaping! 




Are you contributing a recipe to this week's Foodie Friday?

 If so, locate the blue Inlinkz icon in the lower, left-hand portion of this post. Click on the icon and follow the directions. After you complete the process, you will see a red "x" beside your name. This allows you to delete your link if you made an error; the red "x" is visible to you only.

You can read an UPDATED guide to this linky party HERE.

Share your food photos with a larger community at the Pinterest foodie board, Top Food Bloggers.  Send me a message @ Pinterest if you'd like to join.

The Foodie Friday Link Party

Have a great weekend.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Winter Farmhouse: A Tour



Put on your warmest mittens, a bright red scarf, a down-filled coat, and Wellington boots. This Sunday, we're traveling to rural Ellensburg, Washington, to tour a farm. 


As we approach, dusk is falling. Let's button up our coats as we hurry across the snowy pasture.
Farmhouse Exterior by Seattle Architects & Building Designers Dan Nelson, Designs Northwest Architects



The design is reminiscent of early Western homes, with a wrap-a-round veranda, metal roof, and a rugged grace. For the siding, western red cedar was installed. I'm smitten by the plain "tin" roof. 




The main house has 2300 square feet: two bedrooms and two and one-half baths. The guest cottage (the white gabled building on the left) has 900 square feet and includes one and one-half baths and one bedroom.



On the dining room porch, icicles gather on two royal blue Adirondack chairs.
Farmhouse Porch by Seattle Architects & Building Designers Dan Nelson, Designs Northwest Architects



The house was built for viewing the land--and the horses as they graze in the pasture. Below, an L-shaped porch acts as a windbreak.
Farmhouse Porch by Seattle Architects & Building Designers Dan Nelson, Designs Northwest Architects



The workmanship on the ceiling is impressive. 
So is the view. Just beyond the duck pond, the land seems to drop off into an ethereal mist.
Farmhouse Porch by Seattle Architects & Building Designers Dan Nelson, Designs Northwest Architects



Baby, it's cold outside--just look at the icicles on the gutters.
The dormer windows are quaint; they are hinged at the top in case you need fresh air.



From the house, there's a covered breezeway that leads to the white guesthouse and a garage.
Love the golden glow!
Farmhouse Exterior by Seattle Architects & Building Designers Dan Nelson, Designs Northwest Architects



A view of the house and breezeway. The corner windows take advantage of the views. Notice the antique dinner bell to the left of the front door?


The breezeway's ceiling is much more rustic--and utterly charming. I can almost imagine cowboys sawing wood and hammering. The entire compound is like a poem, evocative of a time that is long-gone and (as with classic poetry) the imagery is beautifully sustained.
Farmhouse Porch by Seattle Architects & Building Designers Dan Nelson, Designs Northwest Architects



The guest house is flanked by snow-tipped trees. It puts me in mind of an old school house or church. Again, we see corner windows--these are much taller.



On our way to the guest house, we see foals galloping in the pasture. Nothing like cold air to raise the spirit in a horse--these look frisky!
Here, we can also get a close-up of the cedar lap siding, the simple architectural shingles, and the exterior lighting.


Another view of the guest house.
We have an 70s style metal barn at the new-old ranch, which the previous owners used as a storage shed. It will probably stay that way--can't have too much storage--but in my mind's eye, I see a writing cottage and a place to blog. I'd pick white HardiPlank siding and order simple windows.
It would be a dream to work with these architects. I am bowled over by their talent.



From this angle, we have a better idea of how the guest cottage connects to the main house.

Ready to get out of the cold?
The great room is warm and smells so fresh. Let's take off our Wellies so we don't drip onto the pine floors.  Love the dormers, the pine ceiling and stone fireplace. An antler chandelier captures the spirit of a western-style cottage.
Farmhouse Living Room by Seattle Architects & Building Designers Dan Nelson, Designs Northwest Architects
Beyond the upstairs rail is the master bedroom.
And below, a bookcase frames a doorway, adding character--and you can grab a book as you pass by.
Farmhouse Living Room by Seattle Architects & Building Designers Dan Nelson, Designs Northwest Architects
Farmhouse Living Room by Seattle Architects & Building Designers Dan Nelson, Designs Northwest Architects
The view from upstairs.
Farmhouse Living Room by Seattle Architects & Building Designers Dan Nelson, Designs Northwest Architects
Shall we look at the master?
Let's peek into the en suite. A pine-lined tray ceiling adds a modern touch. Love the view.
Farmhouse Bathroom by Seattle Architects & Building Designers Dan Nelson, Designs Northwest Architects





Counter-space galore!
Farmhouse Bathroom by Seattle Architects & Building Designers Dan Nelson, Designs Northwest Architects
Downstairs, we find a farmhouse kitchen.
Farmhouse Kitchen by Seattle Architects & Building Designers Dan Nelson, Designs Northwest Architects





This photo gives a better idea of the layout. You can see the dining room in the distance.
A custom built buffet is the perfect place to set out cowboy casseroles.
Farmhouse Dining Room by Seattle Architects & Building Designers Dan Nelson, Designs Northwest Architects

A slanted pine ceiling adds charm and texture to the breakfast room.
Farmhouse Dining Room by Seattle Architects & Building Designers Dan Nelson, Designs Northwest Architects




The powder room






Last but not least, a tour of the guest house--the most welcoming guest house in America.






From the kitchen, you can see the TV in the great room. To the right, stairs lead to the bedroom.
Farmhouse Living Room by Seattle Architects & Building Designers Dan Nelson, Designs Northwest Architects



Looking back to the kitchen, you can see the genius at work here--soaring ceilings, and a corner window that adds light and an amazing design aesthetic.

Are you still cold? Grab a cup of hot chocolate.


Farmhouse Living Room by Seattle Architects & Building Designers Dan Nelson, Designs Northwest Architects





Lovely views from every window show the incredible thought that went into this house.
Farmhouse Powder Room by Seattle Architects & Building Designers Dan Nelson, Designs Northwest Architects



Dusk is falling.
The windows glow like honey in glass jars, and the smell of wood smoke mingles with the hearty aromas of homemade chili and garlic bread.





As the blue hour envelops the farm, we'll say farewell.
Farmhouse Exterior by Seattle Architects & Building Designers Dan Nelson, Designs Northwest Architects


Thanks for joining me this Sunday.

Resources:
Designs NW website
Farm Album
For more photos and information, take the Houzz tour HERE.

Shared at Metamorphosis Monday 

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