Every year we get a calendar of porches. This is from the December page. All other images from the Net.
When I look at it it makes me feel so serene, so tranquil and then the gears start turning in my brain.
I can picture G and I sitting out there, I 'm wearing a big sweater over my PJs and my ugg boots, drinking a hot cup of coffee and feeling all my senses. G is standng at the railing wearing his barn jacket saying how much he loves it there. Being from the midwest, but living in CA for over 30 years, it's nice for him to be in the snow for a bit.
It's a long weekend away, we just finished some molasses pancakes.and inside a fire is going in the wood cook stove and a big pot of hearty soup is simmering for later with a loaf of crusty french bread waiting with a bottle of Shiraz.
There is no TV or Internet
The great room (although not huge) has a sofa and a few scattered overstuffed chairs and ottomans that all face a beautiful stone fireplace. The stones were hand carried many years ago from the creek down the hill. The mantel has a carving in the center front of a pine tree and crescent moon. There are various quilts draped around to use for warmth in winter. The wood floor has various Navajo rugs that have been well worn. There is a CD player for music and most selections are perfect for sitting with a journal sketching, reading a book or just drifting away in the shear calmness of it all. I find myself writing voraciously, stories of snow gnomes who live at the base of the trees. I've never been so inspired.
The table we eat on is made of 2 salvaged planks of wood created in to one table, weathered but well preserved. Guests are encouraged to carve their initials in it along with the year they were there. We sit and run our fingers over the carvings that go back to 1943. We wonder who they were, why they came there. There are 4 mismatched chairs and a bench around the table.
The kitchen is vintage but has been upgraded with all the modern conveniences. The refrigerator is cleverly inside what would appear to be an armoire. The sink is an old farmhouse sink but still boasts a disposal. The stove is a refurbished O'Keefe and Merrit or you can cook on the wood stove sitting across the room. We opt for the wood stove.....just because we can. The cupboards are made of reclaimed lumber and the counter tops were recently replaced with a cement that has tiny pebbles inbedded in it all along the edges. Windows, windows everywhere.
There's a bathroom with a clawfoot tub/shower combo, a pedestal sink, a standard loo and cabinet made of willow that holds thick, fluffy white towels. The walls are made from old barn wood. The window is large enough to see out when sitting in a hot bath and now and then you can see a family of deer stroll by.
The bedroom consists of a queen size iron bed piled with a thick down comforter and quilts. The sheets are crisp and the pillows plumped. A hand woven rug covers part of the wood floor and there is a wardrobe for your things.
A staircase leads to an open loft where there are 2 more of the same comfy beds, another bathroom and windows with a view as far as the eye can see. Moonlight comes in those windows on a clear night and casts shadows you can see from below.
There is also a stacked washer and dryer in a small room near the back door as it's the guests responsibility to leave clean towels and linens. We don't mind one bit.
The place can sleep 6 people but it's just the 2 of us. We hear later that it does turn out that mostly couples book the cabin although the occasional group does go up.
If this were a real place (and not my imagination) it would be a wonderful art retreat.
We go for long walks every day and our cheeks get red from the cold but we don't even notice. We make snow angels and a snow man and we put out food for the deer.
Many photographs are taken to record these moments.
We pick up some pine cones and look for heart shaped rocks.....and we gather memories.
We take a drive to a nearby village where there are little shops, a market, a cafe and post office. Everyone smiles as they walk by and all the shopkeepers are so courteous. When they find out where we're staying there are many stories from those who have been around for years. Turns out it(cabin) was made lovingly by hand as a honeymoon gift from Jacob O'Hara to his new bride Ruth a long time ago..... yet they never stayed there...........but that's another story, for another day.
See what happens when I just let my imagination run wild from one photo.
So let's hear it, what do YOU think of when you look at that calendar page?
I hope you have a wonderful weekend wherever you are!
P.S. This is a sneak peek of just one of the items being given away at my birthday party coming the 15th. Yes, there will be more than one thing! Watch this space for details.