Thursday, March 23, 2017

The Old Cottage



Bonjour et Bienvenue `a My Little Paris

I love this picture. It's on a piece of wall art that I purchased years ago from a little store on the west coast. The company that designs them is called Cedar Mountain and they're located on Salt Spring Island, just off the coast of Vancouver Island. I called them when I decided to open the boutique and I'm thrilled to tell you that their work will be in the store. 

This particular picture makes me think of my family property at the lake.  My grandfather purchased the lakefront property in 1939......it was the only property he ever owned, as they rented in Regina, and this property was like our "family farm", he was very proud of it. I grew up coming to the lake every weekend through the summer, sometimes for the whole summer, staying in the old cottage, it's a big part of me. I also grew up listening to all the stories of bygone days at the lake. I think this is where the beginnings of my love of the old ways comes from.

My mom told me that they came for holidays the first year,  and  my grandpa dug a trench down the hill, then put one wheel of the car (this would have been a 1930's model something) into the trench, drove down the hill, and announced that they couldn't go home until he dug a road so they could get back up. He dug the entire road, into the hill, by hand, and we're still using that road to this day. 

For the first few years they lived in tents when they were here, they cooked on an open fire and built a stone oven on the beach. 

My memories, are of the old cottage. It was built in about 1942 and was added onto again and again........there was a stone fireplace that my mom and her dad built with stones from the property and an old wood stove, where we toasted thick slices of bread every morning over the open fire. I remember the big round kitchen table, very old dishes, all mismatched,  the creamy white  milk jug, big, comfy old beds with heavy vintage quilts and wool blankets, overstuffed chairs, warm throws, and crackling fires. 

Life was slow there.........family came to visit, huge meals were prepared, somehow? Books were read, my dad would sit on the patio in the evenings and play his sax........we slept hard and long in those big old beds, and our days were full of sunshine and play. There was a certain charm in living life with the old things, in lighting the wood stove and fireplace, in not having TV, in talking to each other, in lingering over a cup of tea. When I think of the shabby chic trend that a lot of us are embracing now, I think of those days at the lake. I can't deny that I felt safe and warm and happy living with those things.......living that way.

If you haven't been introduced to the shabby chic look, stop by the boutique and I can help you with that. Maybe you'll love the old cottage look and feel as much as I do...........

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