Thursday, September 8, 2016

Settling In: A WIW photo and a peek at the new Garden


Bit of a whirlwind 'round here, as you might imagine, what with all the moving boxes and the trying to understand this new space, the new lifestyle we've embarked on, how we will want and be able to furnish and decorate for that. So just a few photos today before we head to our French lesson.

The top photo is, obviously, a What I Wore (one of my "uniforms" these days: jeans, white T, blazer, deck shoes, done...) taken in our new walk-through closet. Needless to say, that's the last time that closet will ever look So uncluttered....

This (below is more typical of the condo right now, although we've made some headway since this was snapped. You'll note that the piano is still with us. The plan has been to sell if from here, but it's making a strong argument for staying put. I mean, really, aren't dining tables overrated?

And before I run, a few photos from the terrace--the previous owners downsized and generously offered us their plants. I'm thrilled to discover a few old and new favourites and to get such a good head start. I'll be content to sit with the garden as it is while I learn the conditions here. The first day we were here, it was gloriously sunny, although breezy, a trifle cool. And there were bees in the lavender
tomatoes ripening on the vine  
hollyhocks going to seed rather sculpturally 

While yet throwing out new blooms

There was one of my dad's favourites which I would have loved to be able to show him -- he'd sniff its fragrance right away -- a wallflower, as scraggly as is their tendency
And I'm not positive, but I'm fairly sure, ever so hopeful, that there is a Star Magnolia, judging by this furry bud and the shape/size of the leaves. If you know better, disabuse me gently, would you?


That's all for now, but I do want to remind anyone interested in the Read-along of Elena Ferrante's My Brilliant Friend that the first post is up over at my reading blog.

41 comments:

  1. That closet! SWOON!! Best wishes as you unpack and begin to settle in.

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    1. Thanks Tricia. Never had a closet like this, and it will take me a bit to figure out how to use it best (our bedroom is too small for more than one small chest, and even that might be too much, so. . . .

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  2. I'm swooning over the closet, too! Your garden headstart will help you feel at home. Happy unpacking!

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    1. Thanks, Lorrie. It really does say "home" -- a garden does that!

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  3. What a fabulous rooftop garden!
    Lovely open concept condo with great views and a spacious closet...you must be very happy settling into your new space.

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    1. Thanks, L. I do love the garden and we're feeling great!

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  4. Thank you for sharing the pictures. The light and the garden, not to mention the closet, look wonderful. We are visiting Vancouver this week after a few days in Victoria. I have used some of your outdoor biking and urban art photos to give us some local flavor activities here. Enjoy this new stage. Best regards!

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    1. Oh Beth, I'm so glad you've got these few days of sunshine (at least, I hope you have! There's been ample rain this week as well). I'd love to hear how you enjoyed the city. If it weren't such a busy time for me, we could have met up -- next time! ;-)

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    2. My apologies for this late response but want to tell you again what a lovely time we had in Vancouver and Vancouver Island as well. We also spent six days using Victoria as a base to explore as well. Lots of cycling, walking and kayaking in all locations! We were so impressed with how Vancouver manages to combine public art and urban life with easily accessible outdoor activities. We primarily focused on the West End and closer in neighborhoods and also enjoyed cycling over to Kits and the beaches beyond the last two days to enjoy the glorious early fall weather. Our last day culminated in a lovely afternoon picnic in a warm sheltered part of Jericho Beach. The physical beauty of the water, is,ands and mountains is so spectacular all around. Next trip we would love to explore more of the other neighborhoods. I would love to have the opportunity to meet for tea or a glass of wine next time. Also let me know if you return to Portland. Thank you for offering! Enjoy your new space.

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    3. Wonderful! Thanks for checking back in -- I'm so glad you enjoyed our city so much, and Victoria as well. The West End and Kits would have given you a perfect introduction with the mountains in view and the ocean at hand. Jericho Beach -- with all those picnic spots -- is part of my regular cycling route and on my long running route.
      And yes, give me a shout next time you visit. I think we're in Portland in January or February, so perhaps we can meet up then.

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  5. Ah, so many arranging and re-arranging possibilities! And nice that your new garden-in-the-sky has a generous head start--and a welcoming bee. A fine little housewarming!

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  6. Thank you for a glimpse into your new space. Best wishes for the unpack. Moving is definitely a big job and soon you will be at the more fun, artistic stage. I am sure your wonderful clothes closet will be totally organized……
    Suz from Vancouver

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    1. I like your confidence, Suz! ;-) It's easy to feel a bit daunted at the moment, but I remind myself we're not in a rush . . .

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  7. Love the closet too! So spacious. Your piano certainly looks at home there ....and lovely to have so many flowers already established on the terrace. Hoping it soon feels like home. Wishing you both lots of happy times there.
    Rosie

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    1. Thanks so much, Rosie. It does look quite settled, my good old piano, doesn't it?!

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  8. Massive change of lifestyle and pace, Frances. Hope you soon feel settled in your urban setting and those boxes start to find their space.

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    1. It's a really big change, Marianne, and I think we're only beginning to process it, despite having had the transition time. Thank you.

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  9. I'm loving all the potential I'm seeing from your photos Frances .The garden looks stunning already and that is definitely a magnolia. How great that the previous owners left you so much. I look forward to seeing how you settle in :) B

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    1. Thanks, Ripples -- I'm so glad to have my suspicions validated by another gardener. Nothing like the promise of new spring buds to attach one firmly to a new garden, right?

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  10. So glad you kept the piano. Just imagine sitting there and playing with all that view in front of you! I'm sure you will find a solution to the dining situation.
    Your hanging garden amazes me. Even hollyhocks in the sky!
    Enjoy the settling in.

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    1. Supposedly, it's only here temporarily, but I found the box with my sheet music yesterday, and I played for half an hour after dinner. . . .

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  11. Wow! The light, the space... are you sure this is Vancouver? What a find!

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    1. Thanks Belle -- we're pretty happy! (It's not spacious overall, truly, but we deliberately looked for an open-area kitchen-dining-livingroom, so we'd get a sense of space)

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  12. It looks beautiful from the glimpses, Frances. Remember to pay extra yourself. You don't have to do it all at once.....and it will still be there when you return from any autumn adventures.

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    1. Thanks H. I'm trying to keep that in mind, although it's easy to become impatient.

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  13. My dining area has always been converted to a music room with the grand piano in it.

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  14. It looks delightful! I am so glad you have a starter garden left by the previous owners. You can watch the plants over the next year and decide what you want to nurture and what you want to add. That is one of my favourite things about moving: watching my new garden over the first year. I hope you enjoy settling in. I know there will be many trips to Canadian Tire or the equivalent to get hooks, light bulbs, step ladders, new trash bins and all those things that will make the new place work for the two of you. It really looks lovely. Brenda.

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    1. Thanks, Brenda. That's how I feel about the garden as well. Watching it over the year will guide us into knowing the place. We're already making the lists for Home Depot or Canadian Tire or Ikea -- shower curtains! hooks to hang shower curtains from! a stepstool! (kitchen cupboards are too high for me) -- you've got it absolutely. Can't imagine how you did that with teaching fulltime -- I'm so glad we're retired and able to move in at an easier pace.

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  15. As welcoming gifts go, lots of living plants are among the best. It a real find, an urban spot with lots of space. Enjoy.

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    1. You're right, Julie -- nothing could have made me feel more welcome! Thanks

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  16. What a wonderful view!
    And a walk-in wardrobe!
    And a garden!
    Beautiful! You'll have a happy life here!
    Dottoressa

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    1. Thanks, Dottoressa -- it does look good, doesn't it?! Now just to get settled and live in it. .

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  17. You must be pleased & relieved that everything is falling into place . Have you met the neighbours yet ?
    Wendy in York

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  18. I enjoyed your pics so much! The condo looks like a great and interesting place to be. How wonderful that the former owner left you some of his plants. It made me happy for you. I think it was the best gift for you since you loved your own so much and it was hard to leave them. I started the book MBF a few weeks back. Going to go back and reread. By the way, you look great in the skinny jeans. I love them but often take them off as soon as I am home and into my baggy comfy pants go I which could point to needing a larger size. :-)After growing my gray in this last year my next decision is to wear more dresses and also more leggins with long shirt for cover. I crave comfort these days. I short of jumped all over the place in this comment but that's what is going on for me today. Thanks for your wonderful blog! It is my favorite one!

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    1. Sorry I missed seeing this.
      Thanks for the sweet comment about my blog and as for the compliment on the jeans -- they're actually a pair of boyfriend jeans, not skinny at all, very comfortable in fact, even if I've just eaten a big lunch! ;-)
      Interesting that you're changing what you feel like wearing as your grey has grown in -- I'm still seeing what direction mine will take me in, and I'm not regretting the decision to go grey at all!

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  19. What a lovely rooftop garden. That would definitely have sold it for me. Wishing you lots of happiness in your new home. Mary

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    1. Thanks, Mary. In fact, silly as it might sound, that probably is exactly what sold the place to us. . .

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  20. Huge balcony ... you could keep chickens on it !
    Lovely to have so many plants already ... you'll settle in in no time .

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    1. oh, I've wondered about that -- do you think the neighbours would notice? ;-)
      I've also wondered about bees -- would love to find a local keeper who wants a terrace to park one of her hives!

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