Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Yes ~ It Is Indeed True

Odd years have become years of travel abroad and this year is no different ~
I have been busy sitting at my makeshift desk with computer, searching some of my favorite sites for accommodations in the most wonderful places I can find.

Dreams can and do come true, it is just a matter of dreaming of those 'Far Away Places' and drawing the map by connecting the dots.  Of course you must do some saving and planning, and searching for just the right flight, cruise, friends to travel with you,or tour.
We like to make our way around and have rented a car which gives you complete freedom on the road and ability to reach those out of the way villages tucked away.
Lately we have traveled by train and followed the rail to unexpected places. We are doing this once again and although I have been able to plan our itinerary somewhat, I am finding the timetable of the train schedule to be a challenge. Leave point A. arrive at point B. change trains to make the next connection and arrive at point C. at what time??
How many miles can we cover in a day of travel and where should we stop for a few days to catch our breath?

My trusty turquoise Rick Steves' travel book and trusty fold out map spread over the table I search towns and cities that might be our favorites by the return home. Is there a place for us to reside ?
My favorite thing to do is to experience and make the town mine, as if I have a place there, and it is mine~ I think that is why we often return to some of our favorite spots.
We always like to return and know the lay of the land in our chosen places. We feel comfortable walking through the throngs of people with a direction and no map in hand, however it is always folded and tucked into our pocket in case we need to discover where we are.

Two years ago, I somehow discovered Air B&B and have used it in Paris, Bruges, and Nice, as well as in the United States. This company has provided some nice interchanges for people to "rent" a studio, flat, room, or B&B. I like the fact that the people that you interact with can suggest local sights and restaurants that one might miss if on the tourist track. Living in a Hotel is safe, but you miss out on the local flavor and really getting to know the place you are visiting. There are plenty of selections of  places to stay and a range of  prices to choose from. Most all accommodations have reviews of the owners and their stay and a Bio of the people you will be renting from. They can also check you out and decide if you will be a great guest, as I know you will be!

Well, I must get back to my planning and search for the best spots to make our own this trip.
Be sure to keep checking as I will be posting Travel Photos on  the sister page, Bella Italia and Dreams of Far Away. There is a link on the top right side of this page for easy access. or click here:

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Blessings Come Around Full Circle

It has been some time since I have posted here at Beverly Cottage.
Our little family is growing by leaps and bounds, and we at the Cottage have been quite busy preparing for upcoming events in our life~

I posted sometime earlier about my early years and of having a son my Senior year in high school, him finding me and of our reunion~ Years have swiftly passed and my son just celebrated his 45th birthday. This evening he is to be wed to the woman of his dreams who loves him unconditionally and who uplifts and encourages him to be all that he can be.

We have been united 20 years now and have always had a wonderful blessed relationship being able to communicate openly and honestly.
When he shared of his upcoming plans and the news of a new grandbaby coming, I was overjoyed as I never thought he would find that special woman.

As wedding plans were being formed I was included in participation to be there at the ceremony~ I had imagined that someday a wedding would come about, but where would I fit into this family mix of Adopted Parents, and Birth Parent. I visualized being on the outside of the circle looking in~

Through the years of reconciliation, my son's birth family came into focus and as we met we became a cord  tightly bound as one family. This was incredible for me to  think about as we seemed to bond so easily~ As if we were long lost family, which we are in a sense. My son the catalyst.

Yesterday, I met with his birth grandmother, the woman who supported me through my pregnancy, one I felt so estranged with, because of the trouble we layed upon her.
She loves my son as her first grandson and is so proud of him. She loves me too, and as an adult and grandmother myself, I can finally apologize for the burden presented to her soul through this pregnancy~
 We have cried together, hugged each other and loved one another, strengthening the family bond, as she has traveled at the age of 89 to be witness to this marriage union today.

It was approximately 45 years to this date that I signed his papers for my son to be adopted, and today he will be beginning the start of a new life~ Stepping forward, and not looking back any longer. For he has at last achieved the happiness he has been searching for all his life.
I too am stepping forward, away from ALL shame and sadness carried through the years, as I have been given the place of honor as Mother of the Groom, Mother~in~Love to my new daughter in Love, and Grammie to my new grandbaby. I have been given the best gift from God  that has blessed my soul completely.
Today I have arrived full circle and it is quite an emotional day~

Friday, April 26, 2013

The Blue Bird Room Is Now Open

Having lived at Beverly Cottage for 35 years things start to become taken for granted.
There has been a renovation of decor over the past two years as we incorporate family pieces of yester year into the living spaces of the cottage.
We are having a Wedding this September and at the end of the month the mother of the bride and the bride are visiting for the weekend~ With their upcoming visit, I want all to be wonderfully comfortable and charming for them.
The outer ~ guest room~ The Blue Bird Room, has been vacant for some time and for the past year had become a store room for those items you just don't know what to do with and have to sift through.
Because of our upcoming guests, I was ready to re-invent the new space.
Last year I purchased some lovely bird studded wrought iron twin beds. I have been so excited to set these in the room. Finally clearing out the clutter, they have been placed and the room has been decorated to suit its theme~
I was thrilled that the room actually was put together in an afternoon! Everything just fell into place as if it had been waiting to be set.
I like that~

What do you think?

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Casting Crowns: I Heard The Bells On Christmas Day

 Wishing you all God's love, the sending of the Savior, His precious Son~
There will no longer be any pain, nor hurt in our hearts, because He was sent to take it all upon Himself.
Open the Gift of Love God has sent to you today~ You will never again regret.
Love, and Merry Christmas from Beverly Cottage~

Friday, October 12, 2012


I have been decorating in my mind for some time now ~
There are of course several places in need of sprucing up. You might not think that as you walk into  the cottage, but having lived here for nearly 36 years, I know when I need to change things up!

For quite a while I have desired to attack the kitchen. I have dreamed and planned and searched. I have even made a palette of color and fabrics and floor samples.
I have decided to redecorate Country French. There are several things that need to be done to complete the look I am desiring. I am planning on refacing the cupboards and drawers. I will keep the existing hardware.
I want to replace the flooring with slate tile. I would like to have crown molding and bead board on the walls, using muted colors for the walls and off white cupboards.
The utility room will be a muted turquoise accented by the black refrigerator.

My counter tops are especially a challenge as they are 1950's yellow with Burgundy trim. Quite charming for retro, but not quite for French Country. I also have a garden window above the kitchen sink which will be a challenge.
I think that I wish to have a white subway tile back splash, or slate, but I do want a white with gray swirl marble counter top. We will see what I come up with.

I have also been looking for a sideboard for the opposing wall next to the stove to feature my tea dishes and to store other cooking items.

I have come close to settling for a buffet, but in my designer's dream it is just not right.
Of course I want to get the best price for what I want , so I continue the search~

I recently changed out my old oak dining room table for something that my mother in law had kept in her living room to display family photographs. I didn't have the heart to unload it with other items we were cleaning out for a minimum price. It had such charm~ so I have been searching for chairs that would complement the table to give the French Country look.
My daughter is currently re decorating her living room and has been looking for a hutch. In her search for her piece of furniture, she stumbled upon a table and chairs, six of them, along with a matching hutch. Bingo! Off we went to the Estate Sale and found just what both of us were looking for!
With some paint these chairs will give me just the feel I am wanting for my dining room and give me a kick start on the kitchen, as they are right next door to each other~

Give me your ideas and let me know what you think~m

Tuesday, October 02, 2012

The Nest Is Full With The Latest Addition To The Family

September arrived with the arrival of our latest Grand child ~ Miss Wren Elise ~
She arrived on the eve of September 4th, the same day eleven years ago that my father passed~
We celebrated her into life, as I had remembered my father's passing earlier the same day~

The wittnessing of one's grandbaby born, the beauty of the miracle of birth, is such an adorning of love in one's heart, as the first sight of God's handiwork is met with the love of the grandmothers and parents.
We have waited throughout the 8 months anticipating who this little one would be, and what name would grace this child~

Wren joins the others in her family and will grow as gracefully as her older sisters.Her brother will teach and protect her . We are Blessed ~

Lovely she is and of such great disposition. I can hardly wait to see her playing with her older sisters, Tea Party, and with her dolly~

Monday, August 06, 2012

Paris ~ Ces't Si Bon ~

Ah~ Paris~City of Love!
Once you have set foot in her City, she becomes home in your heart~
She beckons and bids you back again and again, if it is only in a thought, or memory, or longing.
Once you have given in to her beckoning there is never a time that when Paris is mentioned, that you will not be pulled back to her streets and Avenues and cafes in your mind.

Around every corner is a new discovery and one must be open to stop for a moment to take in the ambiance~ Imagine passing this 'Fleuriste' daily and stopping in for a bunch of flowers to adorn your table.

Sitting on a park bench along the Seine and enjoying the spring air on your face as you read and relax the afternoon away~ Ahhh, yes, She beckons! 

The streets are lined with bicycles to rent and easily borrowed to get from place to place quickly ~

Drop into a cafe for a coffee and sit and  watch the pedestrians pass by on a rainy afternoon listening to the pattern of the rain drops hitting the awning, making natures symphony to the ear~ Make memories that are emblazoned in your spirit forever!

And then there is the Queen of them all ~ The Tour Eiffel ~ Stately she stands and brilliantly shines in glory.
The full moon adds to her splendor ~ Ahhh, yes! C'est Si Bon!http://www.bellaitaliaanddreamsoffaraway.blogspot.com

Saturday, July 07, 2012

Spice It Up !

Hi All~
Yesterday I was inspired as I read French Essence's blog where she had decided to order some new tableware from anthropologie, to make a summer splash while entertaining.
I so love to look at dishes, and was eager to see what she had chosen, as in my secret dreams, I thought of the possibility of having the same dishes that would be presented on her elegant table in France~
As I looked at these beautifully painted dishes, I suddenly was surprised by myself, as I had already done this, only on a lower scale~
I promptly pulled out my several different sets and did a quick mix and match with my dinner and salad plates.
I love dinnerware, and feel a bit foolish desiring more when I eye a beautiful dish~ In fact I struggle not to~
In the past few years I have enjoyed shopping at shops such as Home Goods and also, shhhh! 99 cent store and Dollar Tree. I always quickly walk down the dishware isle to see if there is anything interesting waiting there for me.
A few weeks back I spied these beautiful turquoise plates and the Fiesta style red with the yellow circular patterned plate. I had bought the yellow plates a few years back, all three of these plates were purchased at dollar tree.
Three years ago I fell in love with the China Red plate and had to have them to complement the yellow plates~
The white antique looking plate was just to die for with the aged process around the edge and the darling filigree~ each time I would see these plate, I yearned to take them home, but fought the urge for quite some time. Slowly, they were seldom seen, then one day I found six of them and scooped them up.

I had several different salad plates, adding them to my cupboard from World Market, Kohl's, and 99 cent store through the years. Placing them atop the dinner plates really made the table top 'Pop' with color and really spices up the dinner table for the summer,and makes your dinner guests feel so very special when they can choose which plate expresses their personality!

Tell me what you think? It's almost too bad we have to place a great meal on these eye pleasing platters~
bon appitite!

Friday, June 29, 2012

Theresa the Monarch Butterfly ~

Beverly Cottage has become Monarch Farms at least for the Season~

Receintly I made a visit to one of my favorite Nursery, Pearson Gardens, to check out their vegetable plants. As I was there I saw that they had a screened cage of Milkweed eating Monarch catterpillars, and some chrysilis hanging on the screen.
I was estatic to see the origin of Monarch Butterflies that have shown up the past few years into Beverly Cottage's garden! I am always so excited to discover something new that has decided to stop and visit a while and make my gardens delightful!
Monarchs have a delicate way of lilting through the air ever so lightly and putting a smile on my face. I feel so very special that they love our garden, of course it helps to have a Butterfly Bush that is huge and flowery, inviting them to come and eat.
Well~ I had to have one of these Milkweed plants which came with a few complementary catterpillars, Decoration for the plant! I promptly came home and S. planted it and I sat to watch my new pets devour the plant and grow!
The plan was to share this wonderful experience with the "Grands", and they did not dissappoint. They are as eager to watch this miracle of metamorphysis.
One week later, my plants eaten down to bare branches, I knew my five caterpillars were not finished with their dinner, and I couldn't let them starve for heaven's sake!
Back to Pearsons to purchace another plant for dessert. With the 'Grands" in tow, Mark, the owner sent us home with not only a new plant , but some empty flats that had been stored under their plant tables that some catterpillars had attached themselves to and formed into chrysilis.
 We instantly became a Monarch Farm ~ Becoming  "expactant parents" to beautiful winged creatures lilting through the air at Beverly Cottage Garden~ Perfect for luncheons and tea parties!
Today we became parents to four butterflies as we watched them hatch and crawl out of their nests all within two hours of each other!! The most wonderful part was that the "Grands" were here to wittness it!
I hope that you enjoy the photographs!

I know that we definately will have to write a report about this for school next year!

Sunday, May 27, 2012

What Does Memorial Day Mean To You

                                                  Commander Lynn R. Clark USN

 This is a picture of my father in his younger years. I believe that he was the young age of 28 when this picture was taken.
My father joined the Navy as soon as he possibly could as a young man. He was up for the adventure of sailing on the 'lake' at the time that he signed up at the recruiters. Originally, he wanted to sign up for the reserves and be able to train on a lake close by his Oklahoma home.
The recruiter encouraged he and his friend to go one step farther and "join" the United Stated Navy where they would be real sailors.
My dad signed on the dotted line and after Naval Training here in San Diego, he soon found himself stationed at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii and about to embark on adventure and a promise of  a job and adventure on the high seas. He was 18.
It was soon after he arrived that the fateful day of December 7, 1941, arrived, finding him up and out on the base going for breakfast.
 Overhead the buzz of far off plane engines were heard. Not thinking much of this people continued on their routine to their posts of work or otherwise.
All too soon they realised that this was an attack on the base and everyone headed for cover or to their stations.
My father was not on his ship and found cover under a crane near a work site.
Watching in shock, the planes strafing the area and dropping bombs on the anchored and moored battleships in the harbor, there was nothing much anyone could do but do their best.
After about 2 hours the disaster was over.
Never did my father ever speak about what he experienced there, and when he was elderly, he remembered it as if it were an experience placed before him to go through, just as if stepping over an obstacle placed in his path.
When The movie "Pearl Harbor" was being filmed, I was excited to view it to see how the movie rated compared to real life~ I was excited for my father to relive the day and see how Hollywood would tell the story and compare notes with him.
Just about this time there was a man collecting life stories of Submariners in WWII, and my father was contacted. Unfortunately, soon after, my father passed away, never to see the movie " Pearl Harbor" nor give his recollections to the author of "Presumed Lost", Stephen L. Moore.
All memories of dad's experiences were gone, except for a few stories he had shared~ and they were few,as he seldom shared these stories with us.

After the attack on Pearl Harbor, my father was stationed on the submarine, USS GRENADIER(SS210).
On April 12 the Grenadier departed Pearl Harbor for her second war patrol. On May 8, she torpedoed and sank  one of her most important kills of the war, transport Taiyo Maru. shown to be more than just an ordinary transport: she was en route to the East Indies with a group of Japanese scientists, economists, and industrial experts bent on expediting the exploration of the conquered territory. their loss was a terrible blow to the enemy war effort.
It continued on~ Soon finding the Grenadier at her new base , Fremantle, Australia.
The battle-tired submarine departed Australia One last time on March 20, 1943, her last war patrol, heading for the Malay and Thai coasts.
Spotting two merchantmen ships and simultaneously spotted by Japanese plane, the sub crashed dived to between 120 and 130 feet. Just then, bombs rocked Grenadier and heeled her over 15-20 degrees. Power and lights failed completely and the fatally wounded the ship settled to the bottom at 267 feet. She tried to make repairs wile a fierce fire blazed in the maneuvering room.
After 13 hours of sweating it out on the bottom Grenadier managed to surface after dark to clear the boat of smoke and inspect the damage.The damage to her propulsion system was irreparable. Attempting to bring his boat close to shore so the crew could scuttle her and escape into the jungle , Cdr. Fitzgerald even tried to jury-rig a sail. But the long night's work proved futile. As dawn broke,22 April, Grenadier's weary crew sighted two Japanese ships heading for them. The crew began burning confidential documents prior to abandoning ship. A Japanese plane attacked the stricken submarine; but Grenadier, though dead in the water and to all appearances helpless, blazed away with machine guns. She hit the plane on it's second pass. As the damaged plane veered off, its torpedo landed about 200 yards from the boat and exploded.
Reluctantly, opening all vents, Grenadier's crew abandoned ship and watched her sink to her final resting place. A Japanese merchantman picked up 8 officers and 68 enlisted men and took them to Peneng, Malay States, where they were questioned, beaten, and starved before being sent to other prison camps in Japan.
The Grenadier was one of fifty-two submarines lost in WWII. Prisoners of War were taken by Japan from only seven of the boats. Five hundred and twenty-five Officers and men departed with their submarines on what would be their final war patrols. Only one hundred fifty-eight would ever see the United States again after the war~   My father was one of these men.

As I said, my father seldom spoke of his experiences, of December 7, 1941, or of being a Prisoner of War for two years in Japan.
It was only after his passing, watching the movie of Pearl Harbor and seeing the massive carnage and clean up that needed to take place, then returning to his station and being deployed~ It was kept within the young boys life, seldom mentioned.
As I celebrated my 60th birthday, 9 years after my father's passing, I was presented with the book compiled with memories of the Submarines taken in WWII. There to my surprise were in fact some of my father's pictures, he had been included in the memories of other buddies who shared the hidden stories, now on paper for me to read~

Just this past month my husband's sister moved into a new home. Her new neighbor, Fern, happens to be the wife of  one of my father's friend, made in Prisoner camp so many years ago ~
I am looking forward to hearing some stories of these good friends who continued to keep bonded after their incredible experience after the war ~

                                           Fern is now 90.

Post Script ~
 My father returned home, and to continue in that "adventure" he set out to have.
 He served a career in the United States Navy, retiring as Commander of Submarine Support Facility,
 Point Loma, California. Not too far from where he started at Naval Training Center (NTC).

Information included from www.subnet.com/fleet/ss210.htm                                                                             
and from preface of  Presumed Lost  by Stephen L. Moore  http://www.nip.org/

Saturday, May 05, 2012

LaLa Loopsie Comes for a Sleep Over ~

The other evening I received a telephone message from my #1 grand daughter who has just had her 5th Birthday. It went like this:
"Ummm~ I'm just telling you~ Um, Grammie, Rosie Bumps and Bruises, my LaLa Loopsie doll, she's gonna have a sleep over with you at your house tomorrow~ So I have a list for her, and I hope everything's gonna be fine~ She's never had a sleep over before, but it might be pretty fine~
Ummm~ you might be able to read the list~
She has a lot of clothes, so I packed the heart ones for her jammies and I packed the other one for the daytime~ There's some shoes there too~
Goodbye~ I love you!" Maaahhhhh! (kiss)

She sounded sooo grown up and about business, as her mom is when getting them ready for the day when she is off to work.
She had written a schedule for me to follow for Rosie. We made a bed up for her.

As you see, before bed, she had a story.
And then she and her little friend were tucked up for the night!
I really enjoy playing imagination with my grand daughter~ Actually, I really love these cute little dolls~ So I get to play too~

Thursday, March 22, 2012

View of Front Garden Bed

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What a Day of Plans~

The second day of Spring~ And lovely Spring weather with many wonderful plans for the day~
Morning devotions to start the day off right and then walk with my daughter and granddaughter~
home and a little clean up and then Mr. Wonderful arrives home from golf~
Lunch and then out to the front of the cottage to spruce up. I have been trying to make the front of the porch look oh, just so. I must admit the BIG mistake I made 30 some years ago when I pulled all the "old Ladies flowers' which were well established Hydrangeas. Enter a sob of sadness here.
I now wish the entire front was filled with these lovelies, but alas they are slow starting for me.
I gathered some nice plants from my father-in-law's home when we were clearing the homestead and brought them to the cottage~ Today was the day to plant them in the beds by the porch, I have to say that it gives the flower bed an established look, and I am pleased with the outcome!
Today, I was also to start the purging of the studio by moving items into the "spare room" then go through and decide what would go back into the studio~
Next will come the HUGE garage Sale at the Cottage.
Wish me luck, as the tables have been set up for the arrival of items, and we sat outside and enjoyed an ice cream instead!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012


After three fabulous weeks in the warm desert sunshine in the Anza~Borrego Desert, we are well rested and re~juvinated.
I would like to keep myself in this 'happy spot' forever and float through the days of the week un- incumbered and free spirited.
The huge winter storm blew through and pelted us with rain and hail, yet there was not enough rainy days for me.There was however, enough to urge the sleeping beauties from their browned-mat beds, and to encourage them to peek their sweet heads up into the warming sunshine and display their beautiful color and sweet aroma.
Buds are appearing on the tips of shrubbery and promising to display their loviliness and bring a smile on lips.

The birds are singing and nesting and yes, indeed, Spring has arrived here at Beverly Cottage!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Le Nouveau Salle de Bain ~

The other day as I was sprucing myself up in the 'powder room', and decided I needed a new look for the little room so often visited ~ I try to keep my home decorated in a pleasing visual, so as one enters the cottage, they feel relaxed and have a tranquil enjoyable visit~ I decided to bring some 'French influence' into the 'powder room'~ I added one of my photographs of the Eiffel Tower in all her splendor on the wall complementing the charcol birdbath drawing my daughter in law made for me for Christmas ~ I added a fleur de lis hook I found on a walk one day and hung a sweet little black pocketbook with a little bling upon it~ I love my blush towels that accent the walls, but decided that a contrast of black towels would help in bringing a 'POP' to the whole ambience, but there was still a little something missing ~ I thought hard trying to figure out what was missing and decided I needed a small bench on which I could place extra folded towels on and disply them as if in a garden setting~ I knew the perfect item for the space~ The problem is that it is such a tiny space~ I knew just what it needed ~ A metal french embellished garden seat~ Finding one would be the problem~ I set out to look for the said item, trying to find what I had drawn up in my mind~ One could not be found, but searching was fun and I finally came up with an alternative choice~ In Escondido,California, there is a great place called Urban Barn~ A warehouse stocked and staged full of wonderful Shabby Chic and Vintage as well as French Influenced items ~ As I wandered around I came upon a sweet cream colored child's garden chair~ Would it work in my small space? Would it accomidate the folded towels? Would it create the feeling I was trying to acheive~ Absolutely! Now that is is sitting so sweetly in it's spot, I wonder if I should paint it black, or leave it in it's lovely soft cream color~ What do you think? I welcome your comments~

Monday, January 02, 2012

There's More Than Meets The Eye Here~

Hello all ~
Happy 2012!!
I will be focusing more on Beverly Cottage this 2012~ But did you know that there is more for you on my travels and photography? It can be found on my link to Bella Italia and Dreams of Far Away~
Here I have bloged the travels of my husband,Steve and I as we started our first travels and life in Tunisia in 1973~
We  receintly returned from a trip to Europe which is posted there of 5  countries along with photographs.
If you join Bella Itallia as a follower I will enter you in a drawing for a photograph of your choice.

I do love to hear from you. I do so enjoy your comments ~