Tuesday, April 30, 2013

LAURA CHILDS "SWEET TEA REVENGE" for "Friends Sharing Tea"

This review is better late than never - Laura Childs has produced another fun tea murder mystery.  My unproofed copy arrived from her several months back at a very busy time,  It just happened this was when every extra moment was spent pursuing "shabby painting knowledge" online watching videos and reading informational blogs. 

While visiting my elderly parents last week, I suddenly found the time to finally read Sweet Tea Revenge.  All our favorite characters are in this book:  Theodosia Browning and her award winning employees Drayton and Haley.  And did I mention Detective Tidwell who is always so entertaining?  And lastly, the one and  only Delaine Dish delivers her usual "personality".

I really don't want to present any spoilers but you are always  treated to the happy hummings of the Indigo Tea Room and our opportunity to find Earl Grey (Theo's dog) in good form.  There are many great tea menu ideas in this book and I loved  Hayley's ideas for a Scottish tea (see chapter 15).  Yes, there are recipes too and even Drayton's Cock-A-Leekie-Soup which I definitely plan to try.  Each of Laura's books can be read independently. 

 My favorite character?  Either Drayton who we all simply adore or Detective Tidwell who makes us laugh.  And yes, I have read all 14 books.  Lastly, thank you Laura Childs for listing this blog in the back of your book!

Today for "Friends Sharing Tea" I am once again sharing the English Staffordshire Teapot I recently found along with 2 English teacups:  one by Delphine and one by Rosina and both great recent bargains.  The little plates on  the stand are hand painted from Japan.  Feel free to pour yourself a cup of tea and begin reading. 

This post is being shared with these blogging friends: Sandi at Tea Time TuesdayMartha's FavoritesArtful AffirmationsShare Your Cup Thursday and Home and Garden Thursday

If you have a post on your blog about tea, please join me today for "Friends Sharing Tea" and link below!  It would be nice if you would also include a link on your post to this one!

Monday, April 29, 2013

CLAUDE MONET AND TASHA TUDOR: Artists Who Planted to Paint

I recently enjoyed the May-June 2013 issue of Victoria Magazine which invites us back to Claude Monet's garden - Giverny.  This was Monet's 20 year passion.  The magazine article shares views of the present day maintained garden bursting with roses, poppies, clematis, peonies and an array of vibrant colors.

When we remember his paintings - his water lily pond, the yellow  floral covered arbor and his Japanese style bridge all immediately come to mind.  In one sense he reminds me of the beloved Tasha Tudor who used her artistic skills to recreate her garden flowers in the books she illustrated.  Although different in style, they both embraced the the same passion for gardening.

I just spent the last week visiting my elderly parents in Gloucester, Virginia.  These collages share some of those scenes deep in the springtime woods of the middle peninsula.  The lush green are a  hardwoods trees and foliage are a sharp contrast to the olive green conifer shades I am familiar with here along the front range of the Rocky Mountains.

I will be linking this post to

I hope you will join me tomorrow for "Friends Sharing Tea"!

Saturday, April 20, 2013


Forty four years ago, after our first year of marriage, my husband and I took 5 days of our 7 day vacation to refinish our first piece of furniture.  It was this buffet that was purchased at auction by my Mom in Pennsylvania for $35.00.  It was hard work to remove the old varnish outdoors on the driveway in the heat of Virginia.  I have been looking at it for several years and thinking it would look great white shabby chic.  It took me quite a while to get beyond remembering how much work it was to strip it the first time.  Sometimes though - you just have to MOVE FORWARD!  You just have to get your courage up:

We keep this buffet in an 8 foot alcove in our den.  
How do you like the new look?  My house is getting lighter and lighter with each piece.  I am so pleased.

I am going to be taking a springtime blogging break for a week or so but I just had to show ya'll this one more piece today. 

I am delighted with our new Vintage White buffet which is painted with Cece Caldwell's chalk paint.  Many pieces of golden oak furniture started out originally with dark varnish on them which is why we stripped this piece and applied polyurethane the first time in 1969.  This piece offered no problems of bleeding through with our chalk paint.
   I am very pleased with my husband's paint job.  I think I already told you I am the distress and wax person.


I have not talked about the troubles several of us bloggers have had lately.  A pirate blog that wanted to appear like a nice friendly place but had links to porn video ads, stole many posts from  this blog and that of friends: Ruth at Antiques and Teacups, (it was she who discovered the pirate blog) Judith at Lavender Cottage and they copied their blog name idea from Kathy at A Delightsome Life. (other bloggers who I did not recognize were also victims) For the last week and a half under Kathy's direction, Ruth and I worked to try to get our posts removed by submitting them on their required DMCA forms -over and over. I experienced some discouraging times but knew I just couldn't give up . Yesterday I got a chance to communicate by email with them where as before it was just filling out forms.  Finally, yesterday afternoon,  Google took the pirate blog down!  I can not express how happy I was.  Remember the photo of me when I won the apron made by Susan at "My Mother's Apron Strings"?  That photo of me was on the pirate blog along with dozens and dozens of others.  We are so glad this is over.

No "Friends Sharing Tea"  April 23rd or "Open House" April 26th.

Coming soon:  more Shabby Chic Pieces to be shared

I am linking this post to:  Rustic Restorations Weekend and Cottage Style Party

Thursday, April 18, 2013


It snowed all day yesterday.  We are so desperate for moisture, we better be glad to get snow. In fact, when I arrived at my shop today - it started snowing again.  This morning, we finished our den oak buffet in shabby chic Vintage white.  I will be excited to show it to you soon. When I walked in the door the other night my husband was painting it and said "there is no turning back now".  The wax job is drying on it.  This means today my hubby starts on the kitchen table and chairs, a small cabinet, a marble top table in the living room and we are considering doing our Victorian Wall Clock.

Because you asked:  we aren't doing everything in our house but quite a good deal of it!

Today I am sharing a lamp I changed this week by painting it shabby chic with Vintage White Paint from  Cece Caldwell.  I purchased this lamp with 4 cupids at the bottom at the Williamsburg Pottery back in the 1970's for $8.00.  It was bright metalic gold until now!  We will also be spray painting the shade with white satin (paint and primer in one) Rust-oleum from Home Depot.  We just need warm weather to do that outside! I have also painted many of my family photo frames and I am so pleased with them I went around and gathered up more to do.

Today is Open House here at Bernideen's Tea Time Blog so you are invited to come and link anything about your HOME including crafts, garden, baking, cooking, DIY, sewing, etc.  Just link at the bottom below and would you mine including a link on your post to here?

I am sharing this post with:

I will be taking a springtime break from blogging for a bit so NO "Friends Sharing Tea" or "Open House next week!  Have a great weekend.  See you when I return!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

SITTING BY THE WINDOW for "Friends Sharing Tea"

There are messes everywhere at my house. The shabby chic painting mode continues.   Last night I painted a gold lamp Vintage White and this little cup and saucer wall rack on the wall below was brightened up with Vintage White.  I even painted a gold cup and saucer stand too.  I am the Distress and Wax person and sometimes the first coat of paint person.  We are in week 4 of painting antiques, picture frames and anything that doesn't move and still on the main level of our house.  The kitchen is grand central painting station and today my husband begins on a buffet we refinished 44 years ago.

Today I am using my table by the window for a spot to enjoy a cup of tea for "Friends Sharing Tea".  There is a light sprinkle of snow on the ground and after I took these pictures it started snowing even more.

My primroses are still blooming.  I love them.  This pink table topper was a recent find with embroidered clover on it.  Like many of you, I adore vintage linens.  The little teapot and cups and saucers were some I shared recently.

My prayers are going out today to the people who have experienced this horrible event in Boston, those who have lost loved ones and those many patients in the hospitals with injuries.

I need to invite you to join me Friday for "Open House" which is all about your home.  This blog party today is all about TEA.  Sometimes people leave links here that have nothing to do with tea.  Please  make it something about tea and the party on Friday about your home. It would be nice of you to include a link on your post to this one as well.

Monday, April 15, 2013


Wishing you a good Monday morning.  Yesterday afternoon after church my hubby and I headed up to Denver to escape the routine.  He has been painting at the house for days and we needed a break.  As I have shared, we have been repainting many pictures and antique pieces shabby chic using Vintage White and Portland Rose.  My house looks so much lighter.  We have been getting rid of the things we don't want anymore.  Below is a bargain oil painting we found yesterday for the kitchen so I took down the larger one and moved it to another room.  We had given this a quick coat of Vintage White paint last night and waxed and buffed it:

Also "new to me" is the Staffordshire English Teapot
 below that I thought was very sweet:

And for those HOPEFULLY soon to be garden florals, I found 2 pink vases:

I hope you will join me tomorrow for "Friends Sharing Tea"!  This is a blog party each Tuesday here at Bernideen's Tea Time Blog!

I will be sharing this post with friends at these parties:
Kathy at A Delightsome Life
Sandi at Rose Chintz Cottage
Ruth at Tuesday Cuppa Tea

Thursday, April 11, 2013


I am loving the changes we have been making at our home turning many antiques from dark woods to Vintage White and Portland Rose.  My friend who passed last year had sold me an armoire many years ago and it has been in a guest room holding my books.  After seeing this really neat photo on line at The Painted Cottage's March Cottage Feature (scroll down a little ways) I really got inspired to change our armoire by asking my husband to get rid of the doors and center post and open it up as a china shelf piece.  Here is the new look which is the second large piece we have done in Cece Caldwell's Portland Rose over Vintage White!  What do you think?

I tried not to put so much "little stuff" here. You know I am bad about that. We are selling the mahogany hutch that was here before - so that has been moved out.

This was before:

Tuesday we had a blizzard day with just a little snow but 50 mile an hour winds.  We fired up our woodstove and my husband worked all day on the armoire.  I made the white pillows with pink roses for the living area by cutting up an old twin crochet bedspread. I found an old sheet to cut up for the backing and pulled the stuffing out of some old pillows.   I made 4 pillows and a throw.  The other quilted pillows are  from my store.  This is an attempt to "tone down" my green 
Victorian sofa that I won't be changing now.  What do you think?

Today is Open House which means if you are a blogger,  you are invited to link something regarding your Love of Home:  cooking, DIY, baking, sewing, scrap booking, crafts, garden...anything about home.  Just link here at the bottom and please include a link here on your post as well.