Sunday, May 29, 2011

In Memory of Our Aunt, Victoria Barr Murphy

It is with great sadness that we write about the death of our dear Aunt Vicki (who was also Sheila's Godmother). She died peacefully today. She was an amazing woman who lived a good life! She was a mother,grandmother, great grandmother, godmother and aunt. She was the quintissential lady who taught us how to curtsy, about the fine clothes at Talbots, and about always being there for family. We will miss her dearly and send our love and sympathy to her sons George and Brian and all the family! May she rest in peace and be reuinted in heaven with her parents, brothers, sisters, husband and son.

The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want.
He maketh me to lie down in green pastures:
He leadeth me beside the still waters.
He restoreth my soul:
He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for His name' sake.
...Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil: For thou art with me;
Thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me...

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Twin's Birthday, May Day At Pickity Place

We went deep into the woods of New Hampshire for our birthday on May Day and had a splendid time! The gardens were just starting with diminutive lime colored sprouts of leaves all neatly labeled with the promise of what they will become. The centuries old house where the illustrator of Little Red Riding Hood lived was the exact deep red colour of the buds just starting in the surrounding woods. The house is surrounded by the most jubilant tangle of forsythia, the floral embodiment of a giggle!! We found a frog wearing a crown in the garden and wondered if on a magical perfectly sunny, warm May Day twin birthday if all the magic would join together and with one kiss, VOILA! a Prince?!!!!

We feasted on French onion dip, sweet red pepper veloute with watercress, marinated asparagus salad, and spring chive onion bread. This was followed by beef au poivre over boursin crustini, and stirfry vegetables in garlic sauce. We finished the meal with coconut lime mousse with mango salsa! Each dish was as beautiful as it was tasty, served with edible herb decorations.

Even with all things felicitous working in our favor the statue did not magically become a prince! So we decided the next best thing would be to go shopping. We bought this wonderful primitive bee skep to decorate our garden.

We were pleased to see that the wolf was sound asleep in the bedroom, probably too full after the beef au poivre over boursin crustini to consider munching on any guests. And how ferocious can he be, if the cat has chosen to nap with him? Anyway, I always think that a mob cap softens the features...

We thought that this boy statue had the right idea, and after eating the five course luncheon that a nap in the myrtle might just be the perfect thing! When we left the restaurant, we were each given an herb packet as a birthday present. What could be better on your birthday than the gift of thyme?

Sunday, May 01, 2011


After having watched the royal wedding, we suddenly found ourselves hopelessly mired in a morning of chores and kitchen drudgery. We washed dishes, emptied trash baskets and cleaned and filled the bird bath and feeders. After watching a commoner transform into a princess before our very eyes it was almost too much to bear. We suppose that it didn't help that we were wearing tiara culled from our collection(tarnished and a bit misshapen---the tiara not me!) Definitely not borrowed from the Queen... In between chores we checked the computer and discovered we had won the fun and quirky Simply-Chateau great blog give-away! Shirley of Simply-Chateau keeps all of her loyal readers well entertained with her brocanting antics and her raids on local French attics filled with trunks brimming with the most delicious finds anywhere! She has raised feamarketing to an art form! The minute we heard that we won we wanted to don our goggles and linen duster and hop into the nearest vehicle to catch the next flight to France!!! Eiffel Tower, here we come!

When more practical head prevailed, we decided the flight to France was not in the near future, so we would have to settle on living vicariously through Shirley's blog and reading the French magazine that we won! To fill in the backstory, Shirley was giving away a copy of the charming "LES SECRETS DU STYLE SHABBY CHIC" and asked her readers to come up with little catch phrases like hers: "flicks my switches, floats my boat, twiddles my tassels and plumps up my passementerie." We were up for the challenge and came up with this entry: "We have a penchant for collecting antique clothing, so our expressions reflect that! It cinches my corset; laces my boots; rattles my chatelaine; curls my ribbons; ruffles my petticoat; twirls my tassels; blossoms my bloomers; starches my crinoline; busts my bustle; beribbons my bonnet; pops my peplum and hulas my hoop skirt! All that thinking has made us hungry so...It butters my croissant & steams my au lait! Last (we promise!!!!!!!!!!), it shutters my chateau!!"

You could have knocked us over with a feather when we heard the news!
Here is what Shirley posted: "Oh heavens! What a responsibility! So many wonderful entries to the shabby chic competition that I couldn`t bear the responsibilty! So, laptop in hand, I called on Madame Rousseau in the village who speaks perfect English and delegated the task to her!
And her choice for the winner is:-

(fanfare of trumpets & drum roll)

................. the two girls from Robins in the Trundle Bed!"

Please visit Shirley's blog at

Sheila and Sherrill