country roads

We pulled out of the driveway and zipped past the corn fields and the barns.  My camera snapping away.

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Yep, I hung out the window like a dog, snapping photos as we flew down the country roads.

Bright blue skies with big puffy white clouds.

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Along rolling hillsides.


Down to the river.

The James River is Virginia’s largest river, flowing across the entire state from its beginning at the headwaters of the Cowpasture and Jackson Rivers in Bath and Highland Counties, to its mouth at the Chesapeake Bay in Hampton Roads. The James is Virginia’s largest tributary to the Chesapeake Bay. The river is 340 miles long, which makes it one of the longest rivers in America that begins and ends in the same state.


A blue damsel fly rest on the banks of the river in a mud flat.


The recent heavy rains have turned the mighty James into roaring mud.

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A ride in the country would not be complete without barns.



and rusty buildings

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A yard full of bugs.


I have a special place in my heart for country churches.

We came upon this charming little church hidden among the grand old oaks.



The old slag glass with beautiful greens, purples and browns I wanted to capture in color, sadly I didn’t do it justice.

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The cemetery calls for me to explore.

For my friend at Southern Rural Route – this one is for you.


I know how you love those lizards!




This particular cemetery had headstones for several children, and with all the sadness there is a certain sweetness too.



Back on the road we find an old school house.

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And a haunted house, well if it isn’t it should be.


A great day riding with my man.  Back home, a beautiful night sky unfolds into a super moon kind of night.



Looking up through a canopy of pine needles it looks kind of lacy.


Hope y’all have a great weekend with the one you love, doing what you love.

See you later, Bye!


up-cycled projects, raised beds dumped cakes skirts in the bag

I like it when my friends send me special little notes with ideas or projects they have been working on.  Here are a few things they shared with me recently that brought a smile to my face.

This first project isn’t an up-cycled project, but it is awfully cute.

Crab cupcake from my friend Karen – she said she thought of me when she came across this.


My gosh these are adorable.  Recipe and instructions here.

 A great recycling project.

  I have been wanting to put in some raised flower beds for a while now.  When my friend shared this project  that she and her husband have been working on, I was smitten.


Caroline and Phil went to a local Habit store and purchased these shutters for next to nothing.  Phil braced the shutters with wood  and metal brackets for strength and durability.  Awesome recycling idea.

Not recycled,  but do you like easy fast baking?  My friend, Peace girl, sent this recipe to me, after my disaster in the kitchen making a cherry crisp for my dad for father’s day.  We won’t go into that.

I rarely cook with processed/packaged foods – not my style.  However, this is so easy peasy even I could do it.

Dump Cake

Pour 1 can cherry pie filling and 1 can crushed pineapple in a 9×13 pan (no need to grease) Mix well. Next-sprinkle a box of yellow cake mix over the top. (Yes dry cake mix) Next-melt a stick and a half of butter and pour over the top. Bake 350 ’til browned 35-45 mins.

Yep, I’m going to give it a try – every now and again, I like to walk on the wild side.

Here is an up-cycled project I recently completed.  Not sure what I was thinking but I didn’t take any photos of the process.

I made this tote bag from an old skirt that I purchased at a Goodwill store.

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The white fabric is a vintage table cloth I have had for twenty years.  It was torn and horribly stained, so I just cut around that and used the salvageable parts.  The pom-pom fringe is vintage as is the blue yarn daisy and the blue ribbon.  The center green and blue fabric I cut from new fabric that I am using to make curtains for my living room.

My new go everywhere tote.

Hope y’all are working on some fun projects.

See you later, Bye!


squash or one-eyed squid

Macro Monday – squash

I  attach my favorite macro lens and head out to the garden.

Our squash plants are finally putting on a good show.

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Do you see it?


I see plants that resemble underwater oddities.  You know deep ocean intricacies.

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Oh and those wicked thorny hairs.

Is that squash or a sea urchin?

sea urchin


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Beware of the white fury monster that lurks behind the leaves.

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In a day or two my plate will be full with one-eyed squid.


See you later, Bye!


Mr. Cottage gets crafty

A couple of months ago Mr. Cottage dug through our  scrap copper pile and came up with the idea to make a trellis for one of our clematis plants that was sprawling all over where it shouldn’t.


He played around with a couple of different designs and then he got to work soldering everything in place.

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He used silver solder, even though it is quite a bit more expensive; because he says that the silver is a lot stronger and he felt it would hold up better over time.

Putting the finished design in place.

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Not bad for his first attempt – don’t you think?

We call it the StarTrek Trellis.

Then the wait for the clematis to grow and take a hold on the trellis.  Little by little, it climbed on up and buds started forming and finally… TAA DAA

The clematis has sprawled all over the trellis and has reached the top.

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Hoo-ray for crafty husbands!

See you later, Bye


a mermaid tale by Coral Cottage South

Hello from Coral Cottage South – breezy thoughts from the west coast of Florida.

mermaid lives here

Ocean girl Collection

 I am enchanted by the idea, myth, folklore, fantasy of mermaids.

After I came home from my recent surgery the Animal Planet channel had a two-part special airing about mermaids.  The show supposedly uncovered evidence that there is truth to the existence of some form of mermaids.  I wasn’t feeling well enough to watch the shows, so I recorded them.

painted driftwood by Ocean Girl Collection

painted driftwood by Ocean Girl Collection

 I  admit I was lulled in to thinking there was some real proof and scientific evidence.  I was pretty excited.  Now before you go saying that was the drugs talking – I’m kind of embarrassed about my gullibility, but I have to admit there were no mind altering drugs involved.

 I really fell for it.  Hook, line and sinker – err get it?

 Well, sort of.  Any way the other day  the morning news mentioned these shows and that it was all a hoax.


 I have to just hit the delete button now and not waste my time.

For those of you out there that love the allure of mermaids and like to make purchases that support hand-made, indie artists,  I am sharing these lovely mermaid inspired art pieces from my fellow artists at Boardwalk Artisans.

mermaid platter by Sara Hunter

mermaid platter by Sara Hunter Designs

Sara Hunter Designs

Sara Hunter Designs

Magical, elusive mermaids.

Mermaid Note card by Beach combers cove

Mermaid Note card by Beach Combers Cove


Celest by Beach Combers Cove

Celest by Beach Combers Cove

Dolly a fused glass and metal mermaid by 3 Wishes Studio

Dolly a fused glass and metal mermaid by 3 Wishes Studio

Here is something we can all believe in  – the allure of the fantasy and the way my fellow coastal artists express their interpretation of such fantasy.

Boardwalk Artisans

Boardwalk Artisans – as featured in Coastal Living Magazine

I’m a proud member of The Board Walk Artisans.   My art as well as the work of my fellow artists that are featured in this blog may be purchased here.

Did any of you see the mermaid shows, and did you fall for it?

I’m off to catch a wave.


squirrel pie and mulberry squeezins

It is mulberry season!

The ripe fruit is edible and is widely used in pies, tarts, wines, cordials and tea. The fruit of the black mulberry, native to southwest Asia, and the red mulberry, native to eastern North America, have the strongest flavor. *

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Oh so many lush berries.

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I wonder why we thought it a brilliant idea to place the picnic tables under the mulberry tree?



All that icky stuff constantly has to be cleaned off, and the fact that the garden hose doesn’t reach that far means it doesn’t get cleaned often enough.

For a week or two each year this tree is a hub of unbelievable activity.  I swear to you, birds travel for miles around to come pluck this ripe fruit.  Forget trying to make pies, or jams or Squeezin’s.  The wildlife gets it all before I have a chance.


The Darlins made mulberry squeezins, and Barney got gassed on it once.

The Cedar waxwing thinks the berry to be devine.



I think he looks like he is wearing cool rock-n-roll sunglasses



The Thrasher gets some action too.

The Woodpecker – I love that plumage.

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Oh and here comes Willie the squirrel and his cousins Earl and Minnie Pearl.



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Perhaps the best entertainment comes from watching Mr. Bonez (aka Buddyru) watching all the activity.

He thinks he invisible while hiding in the tall weeds ornamental grass.

1-IMG_4839He happily lays there looking up in the tree and chatters away licking his lips and dreaming of squirrel pie and mulberry squeezins on the side.


See you later, Bye!


* source Wiki

faded roses and my affair

Today for lunch I had a pink lemonade margarita.

I believe the tequila gave me the fortitude to get out there with my camera and enjoy the last of the quickly fading roses.

I’m well thank you.

 However during my recovery the gardens marched on in stunning beauty, we think we have had the loveliest of blooms this year.

Fleeting and ever-changing there is still some beauty left to be loved by the camera.

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It is impossible to take close up photos of anything – ANY THING now and not have a cicada clinging to it.

Yup, we are smack dab right in the middle of the 17 year cycle.

Oh and have I mentioned the noise is deafening?

Well it is.


Don’t hate me – I plucked them off of these so I could get a few shots without their glowing orange eyes.

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Dear Canon EOS 60D how I have missed you so, could we please resume our affair?



It seems  like a life time ago now, but Mr. Cottage and I used to be test rose growers for Jackson and Perkins.

Sadly, years of neglect on our part have left most of the roses to revert to root-stock or have died.



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The tequila and the walk in the gardens with the camera did me a world of good.  Thanks for walking along with me.

 Dear blogging friends, I’m so slow to get back in the swing of reading and commenting on your wonderful blogs, I’ll be back soon.

See you later, Bye!