Sunday, August 3, 2014

The Eagle has Landed

We've been keeping an eye out for the bald eagles that seem to have taken to the neighbors (dead) tree at the cottage. Imagine the surprise when my sister (Beth) and her husband (John) spotted the pair with...a baby!! Technically I think it's called an "immature eagle".

Thanks for sharing the great pics John! Unfortunately I didn't bring my zoom lens this time around, however I will try to get some shots as they've been flying in and out.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Family weekend at the cottage 2014

Each year we all gather at the cottage to spend a weekend together - the six of us + spouses and (some) kids. This year the highlights were: amazing and unexpected sunny weather on Saturday, a boat ride, an extra long classic car cruise, many games of Monopoly Jr, Michigan Rummy, water blasting beach walkers, food, drink, and lots of reading and resting.

I think we all got our love of gardening from Mom and Dad. They would always "putz" in the gardens at the cottage.  This year we planted a few pots of herbs on the front patio and as we've all been up there have been enjoying incorporating them into our cooking. The basil plants are gonzo.

Mom always had a way with hollyhocks. I'm glad to see that these have made it back into the garden and are performing awesomely.

I LOVE this little area by the back door. The crane that Dad carved pokes out of a cluster of ferns, hostas and astilbes.

Arts and crafts at the cottage are the norm too. My sister Ann is taking Zentangle classes and is quite good at it. Can't wait to see where she goes with this new talent.

The AuGres car show is a big event that brings in tons of amazing cars and people to the small town. We gather on Michigan Avenue to watch the parade. It was quite long this year. We got a glimpse of this turquoise beauty prior to the cruise at H&H bakery. Clara got all dolled up and had a bag at the ready to collect candy. Sam totally enjoyed and greeted each and every cruiser.

There was good food (morning, noon and night) prepared and shared by all. The boys took a moment to relax and enjoy the surroundings on the porch. Many long hours were put into hand making the window molding, painting and getting it looking better than it's ever been.

Steve and Clara put out the flag. Another Bachle Cottage tradition.

And the Aunts and Uncles got to share in kid-fun. It was a wonderful weekend all around!

 PS: It wasn't until Uncle Kent came that the kids gathered around a screen.  Just saying.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Oink Oink.

The pig roast (50th Wedding Anniversary party) was a pretty big success. It saddens me that I did not take a lot of pictures. My goal this weekend, while with my family, is to collect all the pictures that were taken and put together a nice video which I'll share. In the meantime, here are a few that I did manage to capture. Enjoy!

PS: The bride's veil was all her doing. ;-)

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Keeping up with the Kennedy's

I want to share a few scenes from our life at T(o)KC. While we are not crazy busy like other people, we do have a lot going on this summer. This is what summer is all about. I, for one, am LOVING every minute of it.

Love the fact that we now have a tire swing for little (and not so little) visitors to enjoy. Also love the amazing, crazy complicated knot that Kent tied to secure, raise and lower the swing. He really is a handy guy to have around.

Love making chocolate chip cookies now. In fact, it's really rather addicting. Especially when one batch fits PERFECTLY in my Mom's round tupperware container. The same (30+ year old) tupperware container that went on many a picnic, road trip, school functions, and up north with our family! I love that it says Bachle on the side in her writing, and MOM on the top.

Love immersing myself into learning more about herbs and using them in new ways. Love channeling my Mom (again!) to make herb vinegars in anticipation of making and sharing her fresh herb salad dressing. Love watching the plants grow each and every day and harvesting them to make breakfast, lunch and dinner special.

Love Michigan produce. Love finding a new recipe and product that not only I think is really good, but K says is good enough to add to the product line. Love that my prototype batch included produce direct from my sisters garden, and that my Aunt Keen is one of my beta-testers!

Love putting my vintage finds to good use. This amazing suitcase is serving as a desk and storage space for my party planning paperwork and collection of goodies. It sits atop a folding teak table from my Mom and Dad's. At the end of the day I close it up, the clutter goes away and all is good. 
Beauty + Function.

Totally loving being outside in the morning and late afternoon, finding these amazing puddles of light and shadow.  Loving the organic, natural patterns and materials in juxtaposition with the industrial feel of things we've selected for that very reason.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Summer ... finally!

I wouldn't call "Summer" until the patio was done and although there is still some metal work to do, I'm officially calling it done and kicking off the season.

So now I can enjoy all the planning, visiting and partying that this summer holds. In a few weeks Wakako from Baum-kuchen and my precious Roo will be visiting us for over a week!! We're headed to the cottage and will spend some time here at T(o)KC. We will be having a get together before they head home. I want so many of my friends to meet my amazing Cali family (well, at least part of my Cali family).

The gardens have kept me busy. I was really intimidated to create/buy/plant the new landscaped garden by the patio. I love the plants we picked out, but need to do some re-arranging. I've been harvesting random flowers from the garden for around the house. I'll do a shade plant/garden post soon.

Plant highlight: I love the fluffy whiteness of Goats Beard. Introduced to me moons ago by my Mom and Dad. I remember arriving at the cottage and finding two wine bottles (beautiful deep blue and green) hosting goats beard and nepata (purple cat mint) on the kitchen table and was in awe. I actually think one of my bushes is from the cottage reno.

Goats beard, butterfly bush, spirea and barberry

Oh! I can't wait for Roo to come check out our patio raspberry bushes. They are loaded with berries waiting to ripen. We've have a few - and they are delicious. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that these bushes are everything I hoped for to add some bulk, color and edible offerings on the patio. They have such a pretty leaf, the berries are a bonus!