Wednesday, February 17, 2010



1. kiki waiting for me to stop taking photographs so we can keep walking 2. winter sun casting long shadows 3. a nest in blackberry canes, covered in snow 4. how blessed we are to have these wide open spaces to wander through and explore!

"Our forefathers had their troubles, and they were impatient about them, down in their hearts. But, partly because they lived so close to the land and understood the leisure of changing seasons, they put up with them and saw them through. Spring was not only a relief from Winter, it was also work, hard work and long hours, planting for the Summer's growth. No year, nor season, was without its pains and worries. But there was comfort, even security, in the knowledge of change. No troubles lasted forever, nor did any weather, good or bad. Winter ended, eventually, and Spring came. Thus it was and thus it always will be."

-Hal Borland; This Hill, This Valley

Yesterday there was a different feel in the air. There were streaks of blue sky splitting through the blanket of gray, and birds were hopping, singing, literally filling the air with a feeling of Spring! Snow still lies thick as you can see in the photographs, and it isn't any warmer. But there is this feeling....this feeling that it won't be long now. 

You really must read Hal Borland's books some day. Though he doesn't write with the feminine nostalgia of Gladys Taber (who he and his wife were friends with), his writing on nature and the countryside are something very precious to me. His descriptions of the changing seasons, of his simple life on a hill-country farm in Connecticut with his wife Barbara, are not only educational (this man knew so much about plants and animals, I have learned alot from him), but endearing. About living on the land we wrote: "We came here to live, to write, to see and feel and understand a hillside, a riverbank, a woodland, and a valley pasture." I especially love it when I read a passage from a month which I am currently living, and find my experience of that particular time mirrored in his account. Whether it be the first spears of daffodils, the wheat turning golden, or geese flying overhead in a V. 
So it was yesterday, when I read some passages on February. How black the river water is against the white snowy bank; how every bit of sunlight is savored; how birds are already beginning to sing the song of spring and fill us with new vigor and hope.

My husband and I have had our own 'nest' on our minds these past few days; it has occupied us thoroughly. Sometimes decisions can be pretty consuming. I shared these plans of one very wonderful apartment with you all a few days ago. But after crunching the numbers together, we decided we would have to save in too many other areas for it to really be worth it. We both don't like the idea of having to budget every cent of a grocery list, wonder if we can afford to buy flowers, dread a friend's birthday because we're more concerned about the price tag than finding something we know they will love. As the Universe often works, we were presented with an apartment which is smaller but still tends to every need and wish. It's actually directly under the 2-story apartment. It has three bedrooms, a large bathroom, a mudroom, a laundry room/pantry, open kitchen and living room, and a nice garden with a terrace. Deciding on this humbler but beautiful and practical alternative feels good. I like knowing I can fill it with flowers and choose the perfect kitchen, without having to look at every penny. I'll share the floor plan asap!
here's the floorplan! sorry it's smudgy...

Wishing you all a pleasant day....sending love and winter-patience on the wind in your direction.
(For sweetpeas and 80° weather, go visit Kary at My Farmhouse Kitchen.)

XOXO country girl


  1. Very nice photos! Thanks for sharing!!!

  2. The apartment sounds wonderful. I agree, I would rather have my nest smaller and well feathered! Honestly, though, the apartment sounds good sized. Plenty of room for overnight guests!


  3. Yes! We're getting that feeling around here, too! I have a little nest on my blog today, too. How ironic and lovely!

  4. You are so wise! It sounds like this second apartment will be the perfect choice, plus you'll still get your laundry room!

    I love that quote and your photos! As much as I long for spring, I smiled when I saw how happy and beautiful Kikki looks in the snow.

    xo Gigi

  5. your apartment choice sounds like perfection and you will make this space into a beautiful, welcoming home...i just know it!
    thank you for your heartfelt always know that right things to say to me...i feel as though you know my soul...i will be here for you too as you journey to where i have just found are my friend and i love you!
    the days are getting longer here and i am left dreaming of spring...i like the way that feels!

  6. What an encouraging post :) I love the photos, and the quote. I'm going to check out his books as soon as I can!
    I'm glad that you were introduced to alternative apartment- it sounds just as lovely, if not more so! Can't wait to see the floor plans ♥

  7. when words and photos captivate me i'm transformed into the writer's space. beautiful

  8. Darling Dawn, this will be the most wonderful home that you can really make your own. It is the perfect size and layout for you and I know you will be such a happy family there xoxo

  9. Your quote hits home for me. I live on a farm. Winter is generally hard, so I long for spring. When it comes it is mud up to the shin and terrible, making me yearn for summer. This brings heat, humidity and bugs. So I want fall. Not much to complain about there, I love fall, except it leads to winter!

    You are wise to forego the first apartment if it was going to squeeze you financially. The second looks wonderful and will lead to much more happiness in the end.

  10. love your photos and that dog is adorable!

  11. Nice lovely beautiful photos....Makes winter looks so calm and refreshing...although I'm so ready for spring.
    Good luck on the apartment.

  12. The floorplan of the apartment looks very nice and cozy. I am sure you will fill it with love and beauty, music and flowers, and laughter.

  13. Hello dearest Dawn:),

    Thank you for your well wishes:). I'm feeling 100% better! Kiki looks adorable in these photos!! And the landscape is just beautiful. You're right, spring is right around the corner. I'm so excited for you in your hunt for your new pad:). The layout that you just posted is nice; and I see that Kiki has her very own room:). You'll have to post photos of decor & your gardens!! How exciting!!!:)


  14. Congratulations on your new home!
    And your Spring coming!

  15. Thank you for that beautiful excerpt from the book you mentioned...I must look it up someday when I can find a moment to read (for myself).
    Also congratulations on your soon to be apartment, I'm certain it will be just as lovely as the 2 story....and it still looks over the creek!
    Happiness and love to you~!

  16. It still has a terrace - so that is great! It will be amazing -whatever place you touch will be just so... Love the photos of kiki and I enjoyed reading about the season - yes, it is still gloomy here but the daffodil sprouts are peeping out from the soil and it is getting is only a matter of time...! xxx

  17. I love how the universe works! And you are a perfect example of putting out there what you were looking for and allowing it to come to you even if differently than you first thought! I love that you found something you will love just as much and will still have leftover money to enjoy your life there... Love, Silke

  18. Freedom is way more important to me, too. Great apartment! It's going to be a lovely place for continued growth and love. Congratulations!





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