Monday, June 27, 2016

Home Sweet Home House Naming Contest & Garden Tour


Over the weekend we had a birthday party...for our house--I know, who does that? But in this day and age it is kind of unusual for a family to occupy the same home for 50 years. My husband moved into this house with his parents in 1966 when it was new. So I thought it would be fun to celebrate and give our mid-century colonial a name.


Did I ever tell you the story about my husband and son driving the same car to their proms 36 years apart? That's a story for another day.  

If I'm being honest I know that the only reason people might actually show up at a party for a house is the lure of honey. And check out these beautiful (and delicious--which you can hardly ever say about a sugar cookie) cookies my oldest friend made for me. I have gained three pounds in two days because they taste like donuts.


Back to the house name. I set up this sign with two buckets. One had slips of paper and a marker and the other had a place to drop in your suggestion. If people thought this was pretentious or silly they kept it to themselves and played along. A key trait of people who can be my friends is that they are either slightly eccentric themselves or at least indulge me in my weirdness. My entire tribe skews high on the Quirky and Creative Scale.


This double sided sign was a road side pickup! Read about its salvation here. 


When the party was over my husband, daughter and I unfolded the suggestions from friends. People had great ideas and a couple of them were inside jokes. My husband's suggestion won (his vote carried a little extra weight). And we decided on Ellenview.


Which I must now explain because no one in our family is named Ellen.

Around the corner from us is a mansion built in 1846 called Cedar Hall. The cotton grown on the land where our neighborhood sits now was taken about a mile away to the railroad and put on boxcars to go to Memphis and be sold. The railroad was the L & N. The stop became known as L & N Dale. A small community grew up around the stop. Over time it was shortened to Ellendale. Obviously much easier to say, but it leaves residents constantly answering the question -- Who was Ellen?

Winner of the late entry competition: Cottages of Serro Vita Latin for the Cottages of Creative Living.  How fantastic is that?


Now on to the garden...

Have I told you that June is the prettiest month in the garden? I realized last year when I had the open house in August how bad the garden looked. "Oh you should see that when it's blooming!" is just lame after about the fifth time. The pictures are proof that if you are going to tour the garden this is the month to do it.



 An old ladder is the perfect trellis for beans.










 Bees can easily drown while trying to drink from something as deep as a birdbath. Floating wine corks in the water gives them a place to land and drink safely.


When it's hot you get this phenomenon called bearding. It's the equivalent of sitting on your front porch on a hot evening. As the girls return home from foraging they gather outside and--I like to imagine--talk about their day.


My favorite plants are the ones that volunteer. If you are a vegetable and decide to spring up in a patch where I planned something else. You are more than welcome. I'll take all the help I can get. 




Thanks to everyone who stopped by and made the day so much fun even though it was sweltering!
Pictures from the open house part of the party coming next time! 






3 comments:

  1. Michelle you're a treasure. Your unique way of bringing out the fun in everything makes for a very exciting and interesting life. You're family is lovely and your home and gardens are among my favorites things in Memphis -Bartlett. Your open house is a prize for any decorator or gardener to enjoy. Thanks for sharing it.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Michelle you're a treasure. Your unique way of bringing out the fun in everything makes for a very exciting and interesting life. You're family is lovely and your home and gardens are among my favorites things in Memphis -Bartlett. Your open house is a prize for any decorator or gardener to enjoy. Thanks for sharing it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh thank you so much for these sweet comments! I was sure I was caught up on all the messages people had left but just found this one while double checking over the year. :( You are so precious and such an encourager! I appreciate you so much!

      Delete