© 2014 Kate Walsh
Home. Design. The Beauty of Both.
I just couldn’t resist these three lovely ladies riding their brooms!
A friend sent this photo of a pumpkin carving contest.
Here are ideas for Decorating for Halloween, Naturally
Have a sweet-filled day and a spooky, fun night.
WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge
Washington Dulles International Airport
Wall of trees overlooking the terrace
This was the view that greeted me as I arrived on the ticketing level of Dulles last week. The window itself is beautiful; it’s further enhanced by the terrace beyond. It wouldn’t be nearly as pretty if it overlooked a parking lot. Also noteworthy is the reflection of the window, greenery and sky on the floor, all serving to double this picturesque setting.
Read more about the WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge.
Tomorrow I will be attending a friend’s bridal shower. It will be held at the family’s home. We celebrate many of life’s passages in our homes. It’s only natural.
These two photos are slightly out of focus and yet they likely will make an impression. If you’re a married woman, this photo will perhaps take you back to the day or days you were shopping for your dress, as well as the day you were married. If you’re engaged, you may be in the midst of shopping for your dress. If you’re single, you may be dreaming of the day that you’ll walk down an aisle, flanked by friends and family, wearing such a dress, and ready to begin a new chapter in your life.
Regardless of your marital and dress status, life itself –and love– is for celebrating. Each day offers something to be grateful for and a reason to celebrate. Tomorrow we’ll raise our glasses and say “Cheers!” and wish the bride-to-be a life full of love and happiness.
May today find you of great cheer and ready to celebrate.
My first thought when I saw the word for this week’s challenge was “Oh, no”. The author of the challenge said we’d curse or cheer this theme. I sat and considered the topic, contemplating what blurry photo might fill the bill.
It was then I had my eureka moment. A photo I had taken just this morning was sure to be absolutely perfect! I pulled it up on my computer screen for a look. Alas, it was in focus despite having been taken with my cell phone while driving 42 miles an hour down the road. Who’d have thought that would be the case? Not me I can tell you. (Here’s the link to see that photo: Antique Car and a Penny-Farthing post.)
I started sifting through the archives. I came across quite a few unfocused photos that I had decided not to trash (yet). This one showing the cover of Diane Keaton’s book is one of them. I love Diane Keaton. She’s got great style. She’s smart. She’s funny. She’s talented. I had snapped this photo as a reminder to myself to get the book.
As I looked at the photo more closely, I noticed the patch of red in the upper left and the reflective quality on the right. I wasn’t attempting to capture those elements. I do, however, like what they bring to this unfocused photograph. It’s a bit like Diane Keaton—unexpected and appealing.
Want to participate in the Weekly Photo Challenge? Visit The Daily Post.
Sometimes the best view of a sunset is where the sun is striking an object or objects. One recent evening I found the setting sun lighting up these docks on White Bear Lake. The silver and gray docks against the blue water created an eye-catching contrast. The wind was fierce and I wasn’t sure I’d be able to keep my small camera steady enough for the shot. Fortunately, I was able to snap a couple of photos that captured the silvery light reflecting off the docks.
I was browsing through some photos in the archives last night and came upon this one. I thought it fit this challenge quite well.
April 26, 2012
It’s a full sun afternoon and I have time for fun. I went out with my camera because this is what all passionate photographers do. Here are more “sun” captures. Let me know if you have a favorite. You might need your sunglasses for this first one.
Thanks for stopping by. I had a fabulously fun time playing in the sun with my camera.
It’s been beautifully foggy for a few days this week. No sunshine though. I miss the sun. This photo reminds me of sunny, colorful days.
If your home is beginning to feel a bit dull and uninspired, try adding color. It can be as simple as pillows, artwork, a rug, towels, or the like. Use your imagination. Find something you love. Sometimes small changes make a big difference.
As a Realtor, I am always looking at homes as I walk and drive and bike around town. I usually look beyond the basic facade. What else is there to see? What details does the home have? What is the landscaping like? What colors have been utilized? Is the front yard gated off or open to the street?
The foliage here created a window to the side yard. And here was the view.
Tomorrow is the Thanksgiving holiday here in the United States. Many people will be traveling. Others will be staying put and gathering with family and/or friends for the day. Regardless of where you’ll be, I offer this photograph as an opportunity to have a peaceful minute of beauty and reflection.
Thanksgiving is a day when people often think or discuss what they’re grateful for in life. An article in the The New York Times yesterday offered this on the topic:
Cultivating an “attitude of gratitude” has been linked to better health, sounder sleep, less anxiety and depression, higher long-term satisfaction with life and kinder behavior toward others, including romantic partners.
That’s plenty of reasons to be grateful. I’m grateful you’re reading this post and taking a one minute holiday. Let’s spread the heath benefits of gratitude! Share what you’re grateful for by using the Comment link below.
Bringing Nature to Your Home Brings Beauty and Tranquility
Guest author: Neal Klabunde, owner of Gardening at the Crossroads
Folks selling their home have a lot on their mind. Prices, agents, open houses, etc. In the midst of all this, it’s easy to overlook some simple steps that can improve the curb appeal of your home. Some steps are pretty obvious such as painting or cleaning the exterior of the house, or replacing the front door.
The point of this article, however, is to focus on the landscape improvements that you can make. There are a lot of little things that when added together can give you a healthy return on your investment. The American Nursery and Landscape Association’s research has shown that landscape improvements can increase a home’s value by 7 to 15 percent and that a well-designed landscape can raise the selling price by almost 7 percent.
The best place to start is to look at your house as if you’re visiting it for the first time. Look for problems or issues and note what you saw and why it bothered you. We asked Lisa Ciofani Basham, a Certified Professional Home Stager in NE Ohio, if the impressions formed as a potential buyer walks to the front door for the first time are important. “Absolutely. The walk to the front door is where opinions are formed. Look at your home through the eyes of a buyer and take a critical look at your homes outside as you walk to the front door. It’s that first impression that is so important.”
Look at your lawn first. Is it tired looking and full of weeds? Renovating a lawn is one of the items that you can do and realize a good return on investment. Keep the lawn cut to the proper height for the season and make sure that the sidewalks and driveway are edged.
Look at the shrubs around the foundation. Are they neat and compact or overgrown? Trimming the shrubs and trees is an easy task.
Speaking of trees and shrubs, there is an old proverb that says-“The best time to plant a tree is twenty years ago. The second best time is today.” If selling your home is three or more years down the road, planting shrubs and perennials sooner rather than later will help them get settled in and blooming. Have any branches that overhang the roof trimmed back.
Make sure that the landscape beds are weed free and have fresh mulch on them. Fresh mulch will make the plants stand out.
Containers such as urns, hanging baskets, and large pots can be a versatile way to add spots of color to your home. These can be purchased relatively inexpensively. Hanging baskets will do fine as a planter if you remove the hook. If necessary, place the basket inside another, more decorative, container. You don’t even need to get your hands dirty!
Seasonal annuals add an instant pop of color. Pansies in the spring, petunias and zinnias in the summer, or asters and mums in the fall give the house a lived in, cared for appearance. Add a wreath with seasonal flowers or colors to the front door for a special touch.
Adding landscape lights are another inexpensive way to spruce-up the exterior of the house. These are fairly inexpensive and easy for the home owner to install, especially if you get the solar variety.
Another landscaping design issue that is often overlooked is how the landscape vistas are framed in the major windows of the house. Home owners spend a lot of time looking at the outside from the inside. Think of your windows as a canvas and plant a lovely view.
All things considered, a well maintained landscape shows the potential buyer that the house is well cared for; more than an overgrown, unkempt one. You don’t want to overdo it, though. Stay main-stream in your landscape choices. While you may enjoy a large rose garden, a dozen or so roses or a water feature might scream “high maintenance” to a potential buyer.
Neal Klabunde and his wife Catherine live in North Eastern Ohio and are avid gardeners. They are the owners of Gardening at the Crossroads, a gardening website that covers all aspects of gardening and is geared towards gardeners of all skill levels.
All photos ©Kate Walsh/designhouse9.com
Anyone care for a dip in the pool?
There’s something quite relaxing about swimming in the evening. There is generally less visual and auditory noise, and fewer people. It can be wonderfully romantic with the right person. If you are somewhere without a lot of city lights, you can float on your back and look up at the stars and the moon. Hmm, the pool beckons. Time to go.
Come see this pool and
a fabulous two bedroom/two bath condo at Seven Oak Condominium.
Click on link below for more details.
3412 Oak Ridge Road, Unit 314–Minnetonka, MN
I recently returned from a trip to Chicago. I’ve always loved Buckingham Fountain in Grant Park. It’s one of the largest fountains in the world. It’s another heat wave in the Midwest. Enjoy this visual/virtual relief.
A short video of this beautiful fountain:
Buckingham Fountain-Behind the Scenes
In Greek mythology, Iris is translated to the goddess of the rainbow.
Lake Ann Park in Chanhassen, MN
Beautiful Lake Ann is a quiet, non-motorized lake
offering solitude, clean water, and 100% undeveloped shores.
Lake Ann Park in Chanhassen, MN