Thursday, July 28, 2011

From my Book Shelf - IN THE GARDEN OF BEASTS

by Erik Larson
is a non-fiction that reads like a thriller.
One of the author's aim in writing the book was
to give a sense of what daily life was like
in Berlin just after Hitler's assumption of power.
In 1933, William Dodd, a history professor at
the University of Chicago,
was interested in a government position
which would give him time for writing.
President Roosevelt was having a difficult time filling
the position of ambassardor to Germany.
Others were hesitant to take the position because
Hitler was somewhat of an unknown entity,
the "Jewish question" in Germany was just rearing its head,
and most powers in the U.S. were more concerned with
Germany's debt than current politics.
So, although not Roosevelt's first choice,
Dodd became the unlikely statesman.
Viewing the job as a big adventure,
Dodd goes to Berlin with his wife and
two grown children in tow.
The book is Dodd and daughter, Martha's story.
Martha, an aspiring writer, but better
suited as a party girl, was soon caught up in 
Berlin's social scene.
Early on she is quite enamored with the Nazis.
However, as more and more laws are passed
restricting the freedoms of Jews,
the true stituation slowly becomes evident.

I have always questioned in my mind,
"How did normal German people let this happen?"
Although I wholeheartedly recommend this book,
it really didn't fullly answer the question for me.

Somewhat in the same vein, (except Paris rather than Berlin)
I want to mention SARA'S KEY by Tatiana de Rosnay.
I read this book a couple of years ago, but I just saw
a movie trailer for it this past weekend.
I didn't even know it was being made into a movie.
This is such an engrossing story that I still think about it.
It is NOT an easy, light or "beach read,"
but well worth the effort.

And finally, (my mind is really working in circles tonight),
if you're one of the two or three people who haven't yet
read THE HELP by Kathryn Stockett, (a first novel!!!)
It's a wonderful read, and
the movie is just about to come out for it too.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

An Animal Candlesticks Collection

The whimsical appeals to me.
Years ago I saw this goofy little
frog candlestick in a catalogue and for
some reason I HAD to have it.
Thus began my collection of
animal candlesticks.

The second animal to join the
collection was this little squirrel.
I remember the day,
probably 25 years ago, or more,
my sister and I were fun shopping,
(as opposed to necessity shopping),
and again, as soon as I saw it,
it had my name on it.

Two of my favorites are this dog...

and kitty with her teacup.
They usually hang out together.

I have another kitty...

and other frogs.

Frog candlesticks must be popular
because they seem plentiful.

When I became enamored with the
Country French style of decorating
I was delighted to find this rooster.

For some reason, when the weather turns cold,
I like to bring out this little bear.
He just looks cozy to me.
I also like that his candle is
in a bit of honeycomb.

I like the spirit of cooperation of these two guys.

This studious fellow lives on the bookcase...

...along with these two.

At Thanksgiving,
one of my favorite sets...

come out to grace either
the mantle or table.
They're  somewhat fragile,
because they're made from
real pine cones.

Easter is also a great time to bring out
parts of this collection.

Animal candlesticks are one of several
collections I have.
I also collect sheep,
a natural for someone who
works with wool.
Unfortunately, in all my searching,
I've yet to find a sheep candlestick!
But that's the fun of collecting.
It gives you something to keep an eye out for,
never knowing when you'll find
another of "your" pieces.

Bye, bye!

This week I'm linking up with
 Privet & Holly for the Collection Show-n-Tell
Savvy Southern Style for Wow Us Wednesday
French Country Cottage for Feathered Nest Friday
My Romantic Home for Show & Tell Friday

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Garden Tour 2011

It's been a busy weekend here at Buttermilk Cottage.
We were part of our neighborhood garden tour.
Most (all) the credit for the garden here 
goes to my sister Nancy's efforts.

My job for the day was to sit on the front porch,
to welcome visitors,
offer them a glass of iced tea,
and send them around to
Nancy in the backyard.

Nancy has named the garden, "The Catbird Garden."

Although I am not a gardener,
I am a cook,
so I have my own little plot of basil
just outside the backdoor.

Our garden shed is an excellent example
of turning a sow's ear into a silk purse!

An old bench no longer worthy of seating can still
 be put to good use in the garden.

Notice the window boxes upstairs. 
They're new since last fall.

Here's proud "Nanniepannie"
ready to show off her garden.
Please visit her blog here
to get the full garden story.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Do Not Call!

Did you know..
Cell phone numbers go public this month?
All cell phone numbers are being released to
telemarketing companies and you will probably
start to receive sales calls.
You can call the
National DO NOT CALL Registry
and have your number blocked.
Call 888-382-1222.
You must call from the phone number
you want blocked.
Once registered, you're on the list for five years
It takes about 20 seconds to register.
(I just did it.)
If you' like more information you can find it here.

(Thanks to my brother Rick for this info.)

Buttermilk Cottage is part of our
neighborhood's Garden Tour tomorrow.
Hope for good weather!
Have a great weekend!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Progress Report #3

The mice sweater-knitting continues...
Yarn for the little sweaters went with
me on my recent trip to NYC.

You can knit a serious number of these little sweaters,
when you're sitting at the airport all day long!

69 now finished...
31 left to go!
(The subtitle of this project is
"More time than good sense.")

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

A Wee Knitting Project

I just recently completed a sweet little knitting project
for a darling little new, baby boy named Anthony.
Anthony is the first grandchild of
my dear friend Marty.
I first met Marty in a pastry class
when her twins,
Matthew and Susie were infants.
(Susie is Baby Anthony's Mommy.)
It was one of those connections where we both
felt as if we'd known each other all our lives
after our first meeting.
Mark, Marty's husband is
my daughter Kate's godfather.
Although Marty and her family now live far away
and we don't visit often,
we still maintain
a solid connection.

I've had this sock yarn in my stash
for quite a while, always planning
to someday knit a baby sweater with it.
 So, when Marty told me Susie was expecting
I knew the time had come.

The sweater is knit from sleeve to sleeve.
Because the yarn is "space dyed"
the color-change pattern evolves
simply by knitting.
Clever, huh?

I had some yarn left after finishing the sweater.
A little matching hat was needed.

Then, a little bunny that was going along
needed to coordinate,
so he got a matching scarf too!

A big congratulations to
Baby Anthony's parents, Susan and Anthony
Grandparents, Mark and Marty.
(Marty...come visit soon!)

This week I'm linking with
Wow Us Wednesday at Savvy Southern Style
Whatever Goes Wednesday at Someday Crafts
Look What I Made at Creations by Kara
Transformation Thursday at The Shabby Chic Cottage
Show & Tell Friday at My Romantic Home

Monday, July 18, 2011

Home Again

I made it home last night from my NYC trip
and I'm happy to report all is well.
Kate's procedure went well and
with no side effects,
so we were able to do some fun things.
Getting there was a challenge.
After sitting all day at my local airport,
one delay after another,
I finally flew out... an hour AFTER I was
scheduled to have arrived in NYC!!!
The upside to all that was I got
bumped up to first class on the
flight from Atlanta to NYC,
so I was somewhat appeased.
Flying first class versus coach is a
whole different world!

Google Image

Kate was able to go to work on Thursday and Friday,
so I had lots of time on my own to explore.
I spent lots of time just walking and soaking it all in.
I wandered into the NY Public Library
because I couldn't remember if I'd ever been inside
and happened upon a wonderful exhibit
celebrating the 100 year anniversary of this building.
It was a eclectic display of all sorts of things
ranging from music scores notated by Beethoven
to an actual Ku Klux Klan robe (creepy).

Google Image

I walked into St. Patrick's Cathedral
and spent over an hour enjoying the beauty
of the building and the artwork found there.

It wasn't all serious touring though.
One night while at Times Square
I caught a picture of "The Naked Cowboy."
He's quite an attraction/street performer and
there was a line of gals waiting to have
their pictures taken with him.
Kate and I choose to pass on that experience!

We got lucky one evening and were able to pick up
tickets (half price!!!) for CHICAGO at the
TIX Booth in Times Square.
They were excellent seats, center mezzanine.
This is a show I've wanted to see since
the movie came out a few years ago.
It did not disappoint!

Google Image
On Saturday we went to the
Metropolitan Museum of Art
and saw the Alexander McQueen exhibit,

Google Image

This special exhibit was organized by
The Costume Institute,
includes more than 100 of McQueen's pieces
and spans his career from
his post graduate collection of 1992
to pieces from his last runway collection
after his death
in 2010.

Google Image

The pieces range from the sublime...

Google Image the absurd.
But every piece is a stunning  work of art.
New York City is a world unto itself.
I enjoyed every minute of it, but
on the flight home yesterday,
I couldn't help but think,
my most favorite place to go is...

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