27 February 2010

Things I've Learned

This is a picture of my cottage before.  A view into the warmth and cozy living that is cottage living.  A family, foibles and all, lived happily here.

All About Cottages

Author: Terry Pinto
Cottages are dwellings that are typically found in rural or semi-rural areas. It is built around natural surroundings, and most of the time the surrounding fauna intruding into the actual living space. The term cottages also means a small and cosy place of living, often located near a body of water.
These hut-type dwellings were christened cottages, mainly because they were the dwelling quarters of cotters, a group of people belonging to the serfs’ category during feudal times, who earned their livelihood working as peasants. Cotters did not own their own land; instead they worked on their lords’ fields. In return, they were given huts and gardens, and sometimes even a small share of their lords’ harvests. Later, with the Industrial Revolution, weavers' as well as miners' cottages were also developed.
There are slight differences and some distinguishing characters in the cottages that are located at different places. Canadian cottages are distinguished from others, because they are mostly located next to a lake or even the ocean, basically in areas of wilderness. They are mostly rented out to vacationers and are considered popular tourist draws. Used fro skiing, hiking and fishing trips, they are also called 'cabins'.
In Finland, on the other hand, cottages are mainly residential buildings that are used as holiday homes or a relaxed dwelling. The main characteristic about cottages in Finland is that they are made of logs and they too are situated next to a water body. In Hong Kong, they are three storied brick structures, and commonly used as relaxing and rejuvenating getaways from the hustle and bustle of the city.
UK is famous for its holiday cottages. They are well equipped and comfortable buildings that can accommodate couples as well as large family groups. UK cottages are the prettiest cottages and have well-tended and beautiful gardens attached to them. They are usually fully furnished with self catering options as well.
Cottages have today become a symbol of a relaxed and comfortable way of living in the lap of nature, and provide respite to city dwellers from the hectic and stressed contemporary lifestyle.
About the Author:
Terry is a globe-trotter specializing in travel writing. Having toured all over Britain, he has a fair idea of the best resorts, cottages, hotels, and other places of accommodation and entertainment, including self catering services in the British isles. He has been using his vast knowledge of geography and languages to guide tourists and holiday-makers to enjoy their touring time.
Article Source: ArticlesBase.com - All About Cottages

This is the front of my cottage at the beginning of construction. Sorry 'bout the blur - I think it was the tears.

This photo shows the back of the cottage after demolition. You can see clear through to the front.

And then the rains came. This side of the cottage gets the wind from the sea. It is boarded up and battened down. But....

Things are moving forward now. The past week has seen windows framed in, walls built, footings poured, and rooms reconfigured so that even I, with my plan challenged brain can see what the future holds. I've heard it said, it's always darkest just before the dawn. Stay tuned in hopes that, "Cottage By The Sea" will become a reality. The past two weeks have painfully reminded me that, it's not really cottages or comfy homes, but the security and happiness of the people who live within, that count.



14 February 2010

Sunday's In My City segment - Cardiff By The Sea

Unknown Mami

IT'S SUNDAY, and that means if you click on the link above you can visit San Francisco today!  Or tons of other amazing city's all over the world. Check it out but don't forget to come back to "Cottage By The Sea" because, I want to show you how my city looked on this Valentine's Day 20010.

Today in Southern California it was all blue skies and sunshine.  Our temp was about 70 degrees and this being St Valentine's Day, we were loving it!  

At the end of our street begins a trail, which leads down a sandy path, through some majestic Torrey Pines, right onto one of the prettiest beaches you'll ever see. Technically this isn't my city but, it's right next door, so come share the sunset with me today at "Cardiff By The Sea" Click on the link to find out more about this city.  You may find it the perfect vacation spot!

At our house the rule for the teenagers is that they have to be home by sunset. This is what sunset looked like at Cardiff today. 

However, my teenagers idea of sunset looks more like this. This idea of sunset is where the trouble begins.  When this is your understanding of sunset, you end up grounded! And that's just no fun for anybody.

So getting back to "sunset," how amazing is this?  Breathtaking...

this sea, whose gently awful stirrings seem to speak of some hidden soul beneath"-Melville

The pebbles on this beach remind me of the beaches in West Ireland.  They fade out into grainy sand as you get closer to the water.

I loved sharing the sunset in Cardiff By The Sea with you today.  I hope you enjoyed it too.   Thanks for stopping by my city.  Now scurry home, or you might get grounded!

Love you more than all the sunsets that people watched in all the cities all around the world today.



08 February 2010

Sunday In My City

Solana Beach, California
7th February, 2010

In honor of Mami at Sundays In My City; today my post will give you a glimpse as to what my city looked like on Sunday.  Hop on over to Mami's blog and visit some of the other beautiful and interesting city sights from around the country.

Unknown Mami

 I know, right!
I took this photo about a block down from my cottage to the North.  It is a beach called 'Tabletops' and not only is it beautiful, it's one of the best surf spots in San Diego.  Just look at all the shades of blue out there.  Amazing, is it not?

About a block to the South of the cottage is a beautiful park.  When we first moved here it was just a parking lot.  Now it's a family playground with swings and slides for the kids.  Also, it is the entrance to Fletcher's Cove.  The view has been memorialized on my blog many times.  Some of you have been on walks with me that started right here at Fletchers Cove.  In the summertime there are free concerts, and families and friends gather with their picnics to enjoy live music, a little bit of kid karaoke, and spectacular sunsets.

It was a windy Sunday today.  But the temperature was in the 60's during our walk — just before the Saints beat the Colts in The SuperBowl.  It was hard to leave the beach to go inside but, the fans gotta do what the fans gotta do.

This is my idea of what Heaven will be like.  Lets hear it for Heaven on Earth!  I feel humbly blessed every time I look out at the sea.  I experience an overwhelming feeling of wonder and reverence clear down to the depths of my soul.

Faith is to believe what you do not yet see; the reward for this faith is to see what you believe. (St Augustine)

Thank you Mr. Fletcher!

This seagull sculpture was recently donated to our city by residents Carol Childs and her husband Peter House.  It is now part of the cities permanent art collection.  I think it's beautiful.  You can see from my photos that wherever you stand, you see it differently.  I find that to be true about every day life. Wherever I stand, whatever my attitude, is how I will see life that day.

I think this 400 pound sculpture is an example of art inspired by nature.  At its widest, the gull has a 6-foot wingspan, with 3 feet between its beak and the tip of its tail feathers.  It doesn't obstruct any views and fits in beautifully with the magnificent Torrey Pines behind it.

The original sculpture was created around 1940.  The donors bought it on the East Coast and donated it to Solana Beach after they moved here.  Imagine if it had stayed on the East Coast, this seagull would be covered in snow about now.  I actually think that would be really beautiful judging from the pictures I saw on lots of blogs last week.  Snow like a blanket covering everything from fence posts and fields, to horses and houses and trees.  Everything looks so peaceful covered in snow.  Alas, that was not the fate of this seagull.  He came to live here in our city and this past Sunday, he stood magnificent in the sunshine.

 The base of the sculpture was created by local resident Dennis Higgins,  and was designed to mimic the waves and pick up the flows, curves and shapes of the trees.  I think he succeeded very well indeed!

Sun, snow, wind, sleet, hail, rain or rainbows.  I love to see pictures of the cities you all live in.  Each of them come with their own beauty.  Whatever the weather, wherever you are, remember you are blessed by an Awesome God and He loves you.

Last weekend we went to a Fat Tuesday Mardi Gras party on Saturday.  So I guess I can wish you all a happy Sunday on Monday!  Thanks for linking up to Sunday's In My City.



07 February 2010

And The Award Goes To...

Sunday 7th February 2010

Sunshine Award!

Is this the sunniest, most beautiful, happiness evoking thing you ever saw?  I knew you'd think so too, and that's why I'm showing it to y'all.  Lori, over at Peterson St Louis, a new bloggy friend of mine, sent it to me.  Pop on over and visit her;  you'll have fun, I promise.

 Lori, I love it!  It's my first blog award ever, and it completely made my day.

Thank you so very much!

Oh my, it's so beautiful.  So I am now going to pass the love on because, it is better to give than receive. However, in this case receiving was pretty AWESOME. 

And the award goes to...

These blogs which I regularly read.  These ladies always inspire me, teach me something, make me laugh, or all three. Bloggers, I hope all my readers come to visit you and enjoy the visit as much as I always do. I now pass The Sunshine Award on to...

Grace In My Heart

Lucky Beans

For Love Or Funny

Bush Babe

Twice Remembered

Crap I've Made

Yaya Stuff

I'm Living Proof That God Has A Sense Of Humor

Piecemeal People

A Purse Full Of Cheerios

Who Is Elizabeth Esther?

5 Orange Potatoes

Here are the rules:

  • Put the logo on your blog or within your post.

  • Pass the award onto 12 bloggers.

  • Link the nominees within your post.

  • Let the nominees know they have received this award by commenting on their blog.

  • Share the love and link to the person from whom you received this award.

    Blessings to all of you from

    "Cottage By The Sea"

    Come visit me soon and remember,
    Pass it on!

    Thanks again for the awesome award Lori @ Peterson St Louis

    (I'm gonna take this as a sign of GOOD LUCK!)


03 February 2010

California I Tried To Be Your Friend

California, I've tried to be your friend. I have.  Is there anybody as loyal to you as I?  I think not. Who was there for you when you got all rained out?  Yep, that was me.  I made the best of precipitation, and bragged how awesome you are anyway.  I even took pictures to prove it. It's all right here in my post, 
It Never Rains In Southern California!  And, I'm always bragging about how beautiful your beaches are.
I share you with everyone I know.  I get the word out.  It's all about Home State love for me, you know that! My people,  generations of us, we've been living our lives with deep appreciation and reverence for you.  Remember this post?  Want To Take A Walk With Me?  I was all up and bragging about you there too.  I'm just gonna tell you one thing California, and I'd appreciate it if you'd listen up.  Friends rarely come as loyal and true as I do but,  if you want to sustain a good relationship with me things have got to change.  I'm your buddy.  I'm your friend but, I can only take so much of this ration of poop you are doling out.   

You and I both know that I've been trying to renovate my little cottage.  It seems that you, (yeah you, Cali) have so many building codes, so many "cooks in the kitchen," if you know what I mean, that nobody is in charge. You keep changing everything up on me and it feels like this is just a one way relationship.  I put my time, effort and money into you and get nothing in return.  I'm making an investment of stewardship in you.  I love you, I dig you, I'm in love with you for Pete's sake.  And what do you do?  You just take, take, take, until I barely have anything left.  You are leaving me sad and alone and I feel depleted.  How can you do this to someone who loves you so?

My cottage sits alone.  Tired of trying.  The floors which once held so much promise like I showed in this post, "Serendipitous,"now look like THIS.  Tell me, is this any way to treat someone who loves you like I do?  Is this okay under any circumstance?

We've been together, (barring that little fling with Idaho), for practically my entire life now.  I've given you my all and it seems that now everything you offer me is destructive to my soul.

Sob, sob, soooooob, sobbbbbb, sob.

Our love seemed so promising at first.  I felt hopeful and excited, practically giddy!  You promised me I would have my "Cottage By The Sea".  I let you touch my water meter and I even let you Move My Dirt!  You were full of promises then, weren't you?  After all you are the Land of Milk and Honey, are you not?  The Golden State?
I even let you come between me and my G O D  D O G!  Casualties of Remodeling.  I did it all for you California.  I believed you when you said you were, the Land of Opportunity.

Okay California.  I think I've made my point.  And now, because I'm just that kind of person, I'm going to give you a second chance to make good. I'm going to take the high road and climb right on up that ladder of opportunity.  I will not give up on you.  I'm going to pull myself up by the bootstraps, go down to that building department and beg, bribe, cry kick some city, big shot,  as.,  until I get this situation sorted out. I'm going to fight for you with whatever energy I've got left.  If I've got anything, I've got tenacity, and even though all I'm trying to do is improve and beautify my little space in your heart, you thwart me. If we just regroup, remember why we were here in the first place.  I think we can get this relationship back on course.  How about it California?  Are you listening to me?!

???????????????????????  !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Regroup.  Breathe.  Inhale, hmmmmmmm.   Exhale, whhhhhhooooooooo.

I think I can feel it now.  It's going to be amazing.  Can you feel it?  Can you California?  You and me and the cottage, all living together in harmony.  We'll dance and sing and love by the sea once more!  We'll move forever forward you and me.

We'll build, and plant and paint and Andy will come back.  Remember him?  Remember Andy?  22 Things I Know About Andy.  Come on California; don't let me down; if you won't do it for me then,  do it for Andy!

Just to prove my love, my loyalty and my devotion, I'm putting my mailbox back from whence it came.  Looky there, right back where it used to be. No more forwarding the mail for me or mine.  I think we can both agree that this is a huge leap of faith.  I'm working on empty here Cali.  There is no siding, there are no shingles, just bare naked frame.  But I have opened up all communication.  I'm leaving it all up to you now baby.  I know you can do it.  We can do it.  All right!  Let's go.

And to whomever the animal lover, advocator is who keeps feeding my big, fat, cat.  STOP IT!  I mean, thank you very much but, we feed him twice a day.  Morning and evening we feed, water and love him up. This, no tail, 6 toed feline has absolutely no room for any extra calories.  As you can see he is well satiated and suffoncefied.

Love you more than all the rules, regulations, blips, glitches, city employees and artsy architects in the whole world California.  Now see me through.