donderdag 26 augustus 2010

Remains of the day

Do you remember the film The remains of the day? I believe it was from the early nineties, directed by James Ivory. Emma Thompson played the role of miss Kenton, the head of the house & Anthony Hopkins the role of Stevens, the butler. Funnily enough I never read the book by Kazuo Ishiguro, although it won a Booker prize in 1989 and is one of the most highly regarded British post war novels. I believe I even have it in my bookcase....

The house that is used as one of the film locations Dyrham Park was high on my wish list to visit. Dyrham Park is a baroque country-house dating back to 1694. It is set in a beautiful green valley near Bath. It was once the home of William Blathwayt, a civil servant who became rich serving (our Dutch) William and his wife Mary.

Unfortunately on the day we visited the house was closed, but the church and the grounds were open to the public. We spent a lovely day walking through the park, having a pick nick by the pond, feeding the ducks and playing croquet on the lawn.

Before I forget, thank you all for your sweet comments, for taking part in my giveaway or linking my giveaway to your blog. I am still dazed by the number of comments and new followers.

I wish you all a happy weekend! I am off to Belgium for a couple of days.

Lieve groet, Madelief

zaterdag 21 augustus 2010


The last few months I have been happy to welcome some new blog friends. When I look at the number of followers I have, I am amazed. I still can't believe that there are 270 people from around the world who consider my blog worth looking at.

With this giveaway I would like to thank you all, new followers and old followers, for your friendship. I enjoy your comments and sometimes the fun and laughter we share. There are times when I think 'let's call it a day and stop this blog', but when I think of what I will be missing, the decision to continue is easy to make.

The giveaway consists of a book 'Vintage chic' by Christina Strutt (Cabbages and Roses), which I found in a little bookshop in England. I believe it's considered 'a classic' amongst shabby shic lovers. A rose scattered shopping bag by Cath Kidston is part of the giveaway as well.

The only thing you'll have to do is leave a comment. I would appreciate it if you could link my giveaway on your blog, but you don't have to if you don't want to. If you do, could you please use the 1st picture?

On September 1st I will ask one of my daughters to pick the winning number. Please feel free to enter. Silent followers are welcome to join in as well!

The pictures in todays post were taken from the book.

Wishing you all a happy weekend. From a warm and sunny Holland,

Lieve groet, Madelief

woensdag 18 augustus 2010

At home

Another quick post. At the moment my days are filled with work and helping my eighteen year old daughter find all the things she needs for her room in The Hague. She starts her new study next week and I am verry happy for her. It's such an exciting period. I wish I could do mine over again.

Today some photos of my house, to show you where most of the bouquets from my garden end up. I brought the 'teacup pillow' back with me from England. I had my eye on it for some time and when I saw it once again in a teashop, I knew I had to find it, and I did. It's only a pillow, but I am very happy with it.

Before I forget, I would like to thank Sanne, from the beautiful blog Vintage by Sanne. I won the third price in her giveaway, two deliciously smelling lavender satchels and a beautiful card. Thank you so much Sanne! I gave the little bags a special place in our linnen closet.

Well, I am off to the store now to buy a few last things for my daughter.

Wishing you a lovely day!

Lieve groet, Madelief

zaterdag 14 augustus 2010

The art of the hanging basket

When you want to cheer up your balcony, dull wall or other bleak parts in your garden, a hanging basket is just the thing. You can fill them with all kind of summer plants like lobelias, pelargoniums, petunia's, fuchsia's and nasturtiums. When they are well planted, get enough food and water, they will look great throughout the summer.

While on holiday in England I was amazed by the colourful hanging baskets, near front doors, pubs and even public buildings. One more beautiful than the other. I think the British have elevated the hanging basket to an art form!

In stead of writing the names of plants and colour combinations down in my notebook, I took some photos, which I love to share with you. I don't think my hanging basket will ever look as pretty as one of these, but I can try :-)!

Wish you a all a happy weekend!

Lieve groet, Madelief

woensdag 11 augustus 2010

old and new

Just a short post today, to share something old and something new. No.....this is not about a marriage, but about things I spotted at a fleamarket and in our garden :-)!

I have been searching for a red enamel jar for some time now, and two weeks ago I found just the thing. It was covered in big white polka dots, and smiled at me from the store cupboard ;-)! I gave it a special place in our outdoor kitchen, so that it catches my eye as often as possible. The little Chinese bowls with the pastel flowers I bought at a fleamarket for almost nothing. The PIP teatowel is from the new PIP autumn collection, which is in store now. They have some beautiful new items.

Autumn is fast approaching. New flowers are in bloom in our garden; dahlia's, goldenrodes, sedum, Japanese anemones and hydrangeas. Some roses are flowering for the second time. The sweet peas are growing fast and filling the garden with their delicious scent. I can hardly keep up picking. Twice a week I come home with my arms full of flowers. Vases of sweet peas, dahlias, zinnias and nigella seed heads beautify our home. Nowadays our house often looks like a flower shop. There are bunches of flowers everywhere; in the living room, kitchen, even some in the bedroom. 

Onions, herbs and garlic are drying under the roof of the veranda.  Tiny green tomatoes are waiting to turn red or yellow and I have to keep an eye on the courgette's. Before you know it they have the size of a baseball bat. The potatoe plant is full of tiny white flowers. Blueberries are almost ready to be picked. I could go on and on.....but, I would love to hear how your garden is growing!

Wishing you all a happy wednesday!

Lieve groet, Madelief