Tuesday Tunes: Shhh….We’re Hunting Wabbits

Dash and Bizou

 

There is no shortage of rabbits on Green Hill Farm this summer.  I’m not kidding!  We are Plum. Covered. Up.  There are big rabbits, little rabbits, and even teeny-tiny rabbits. They’re everywhere:  running across the driveway, darting into bushes, chasing each other around the vegetable garden, sunning themselves on the lawn, hanging out in the sheep pasture, munching on clover in the back garden, and sitting under the window in the dogs’ play room—tormenting poor Bizou.  We simply have too many rabbits!

Don’t get me wrong.  I love all critters, especially cute, furry bunnies.  But, lately, they’ve been making our lives somewhat stressful.  These wascaly wabbits are driving Bizou and Dash to distraction, and me right along with them.  Bizou is completely obsessed.  Once in a while, I’ll hear a groan and a moan and then a whimper.  This melodic trio quickly escalates into many high-pitched whimpers, followed by lots of frantic whining and running around the room.  And, of course, jumping up on window sills—all in a vain attempt to glimpse rabbits. Understandably, this behavior isn’t good for Bizou, the window sills, or my nerves for that matter.  So, whenever the rabbits decide to hang out under the windows, I usually encourage Bizou to leave the room, and I shut the door.  The other day, Bizou was so wound-up, running in circles and launching himself at the window to get the rabbit that no amount of verbal or physical cues could convince him to leave.  After trying to get him out of the room a number of times to no avail and becoming a little distressed in the process, I was almost ready to give up when Dash came to the rescue.  Apparently, his Border Collie herding instincts kicked in, because next thing I knew, he was taking control of the Bizou situation. With an intense look of concern on his face, Dash ran across the floor, gently grabbed Bizou’s leg in his mouth, and began pulling him out of the room.  I was momentarily shocked, but once I realized Dash wasn’t hurting Bizou and was actually trying to help, I hurriedly encouraged them both through the doorway and closed the door. With team effort, Dash and I were finally able to remove Bizou from the window and the view of the rabbit—plus restore a bit of peace to the household.

Here’s the thing:  We have lots of rabbits.  So many, in fact, that Bizou never has to worry about not seeing another rabbit again. Just yesterday, he was intensely watching one of these cute critters at a distance before finally realizing there was one right under his nose taking a bath. Happy hunting, Bizou! 🙂

 

Hound Dog

 

 

Have a great day!

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Tuesday Tunes: Shhh….We’re Hunting Wabbits

Dash and Bizou

 

There is no shortage of rabbits on Green Hill Farm this summer.  I’m not kidding!  We are Plum. Covered. Up.  There are big rabbits, little rabbits, and even teeny-tiny rabbits. They’re everywhere:  running across the driveway, darting into bushes, chasing each other around the vegetable garden, sunning themselves on the lawn, hanging out in the sheep pasture, munching on clover in the back garden, and sitting under the window in the dogs’ play room—tormenting poor Bizou.  We simply have too many rabbits!

Don’t get me wrong.  I love all critters, especially cute, furry bunnies.  But, lately, they’ve been making our lives somewhat stressful.  These wascaly wabbits are driving Bizou and Dash to distraction, and me right along with them.  Bizou is completely obsessed.  Once in a while, I’ll hear a groan and a moan and then a whimper.  This melodic trio quickly escalates into many high-pitched whimpers, followed by lots of frantic whining and running around the room.  And, of course, jumping up on window sills—all in a vain attempt to glimpse rabbits. Understandably, this behavior isn’t good for Bizou, the window sills, or my nerves for that matter.  So, whenever the rabbits decide to hang out under the windows, I usually encourage Bizou to leave the room, and I shut the door.  The other day, Bizou was so wound-up, running in circles and launching himself at the window to get the rabbit that no amount of verbal or physical cues could convince him to leave.  After trying to get him out of the room a number of times to no avail and becoming a little distressed in the process, I was almost ready to give up when Dash came to the rescue.  Apparently, his Border Collie herding instincts kicked in, because next thing I knew, he was taking control of the Bizou situation. With an intense look of concern on his face, Dash ran across the floor, gently grabbed Bizou’s leg in his mouth, and began pulling him out of the room.  I was momentarily shocked, but once I realized Dash wasn’t hurting Bizou and was actually trying to help, I hurriedly encouraged them both through the doorway and closed the door. With team effort, Dash and I were finally able to remove Bizou from the window and the view of the rabbit—plus restore a bit of peace to the household.

Here’s the thing:  We have lots of rabbits.  So many, in fact, that Bizou never has to worry about not seeing another rabbit again. Just yesterday, he was intensely watching one of these cute critters at a distance before finally realizing there was one right under his nose taking a bath. Happy hunting, Bizou! 🙂

 

Hound Dog

 

 

Have a great day!

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The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö

This press trip was kindly sponsored by Malmö Tourism, who covered my flights, accommodation and expenses, thank you to Malmö!

Malmö – Sweden’s third largest city – is the cool, under the radar, smaller, coastal cousin to Stockholm and Gothenburg. It’s creative, multi-cultural, laid-back and somewhere where you can live like a local for the weekend. Just a 25 minute train ride from Copenhagen Airport, across the TV-famous Öresund bridge, Malmö is the ideal getaway for a relaxed Scandi city break.

And it’s perfect in the summer, when everything and everyone moves from the cosy indoors to outside, and the city comes to life – cafes spill out onto the pavement, boats meander along the canal and locals flock to the waterside for a swim. Most things are walkable and if they’re not, there’s always bicycles – one of the best ways to see the city.

Hannah (of Copenhagen-based blog Hannah in the House) and I spent a lovely, jam-packed 48 hours in Malmö at the beginning of August and still had plenty of things left on our list that we hadn’t ticked off by the end of the trip. Malmö might be small and a slightly more alternative offering to the popular Nordic destinations but don’t underestimate what it can offer in terms of culture and cuisine.

You might have seen my guide to the best places to enjoy traditional Swedish fika in the city (see the post here), but today I’m sharing my design guide to Malmö – from beach picnics and pedalos to the best Nordic eateries and cultural hotspots. Let’s go!

The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in MalmöThe CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö

Things to do

– Exploring the old town
The historical district of Malmö and the heart of the city – Gamla Staden – is the best place to start to get your bearings. It’s encircled by water and bordered on one side by greenery, thanks to the city’s green lung, the Kungsparken. To the west you’ll find Gamla Väster, a series of quaint, postcard-perfect streets lined with traditional Swedish houses in bright yellow tones and ochre hues. Jakob Nilsgatan is one of the prettiest. After a relaxed wander, you can stop at Noir Kaffekultur on Engelbrektsgatan for a little pick-me-up.

The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in MalmöThe CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in MalmöThe CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in MalmöThe CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö

– Pedalos!
Get a unique perspective of the city from the water and hire a pedalo or city boat for a fun jaunt around the canal. With Bookaboat you can even drive your own electrical boat on the water and enjoy a picnic on board. It’s the perfect vantage point to admire the eclectic architecture, where clean, contemporary blocks are sandwiched between neoclassical buildings and low-rise maritime warehouses.

The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö

– Arts & Culture
Modern Museet Malmö
You can’t miss Malmö’s museum for modern and contemporary art – it’s bright, luminous orange. Designed by Tham & Videgård Arkitekter (read my interview with the Stockholm-based practice in Blueprint here) and opened in 2009, it combines the spaces of a disused power station with a contemporary painted steel facade. Exhibitions alternate regularly and entry is free of charge.
Modern Museet MalmöOla Billgrens plats 2-4, 211 29 Malmö, open 11am to 6pm, closed Mondays

Form/Design Center
Located in the heart of the city, this cultural centre is a hub for architecture and design. There’s two floors of exhibition space as well as a small cafe and a shop selling local design and Swedish products. When we visited there was an exhibition of handmade pieces by up-and-coming names and a project on sustainability from the Masters students at Lund University. Free entry.  
Form/Design Center, Lilla torg 9, 211 34 Malmö, open 11am to 5pm Tuesday – Saturday, 12pm to 4pm on Sundays, closed Mondays 

The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö - culture guideThe CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö

– Cycling
Ribersborg beach
is just a 20 minute wander from the city centre, or a 5 minute bike ride. There’s a three kilometre stretch of sand and calm, shallow water that’s just right for swimming – you’ll find the Swedes in there with all the family, even the dog!

On a clear day you can see across to Copenhagen and watch the sunset over the Öresund bridge. While from the shore you can’t miss the ‘Turning Torso’, an eye-catching, 190m-tall tower designed by Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava. 

And if you have a hire car and want to explore further afield, the wider area of Skåne has a wealth of beautiful beaches that would make a wonderful road trip.

The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in MalmöThe CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in MalmöThe CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö

– Picnic on the beach
On our last evening Hannah and I wanted to do something a little special, so we headed straight to our favourite designs shops in town – H&M Home and Granit (one not to miss!) – to pick up some supplies for a stylish Swedish picnic on the beach. As the sun went down we drank chilled rose and nibbled on open sandwiches with gravlax, prawns and potato salad. Bliss – just watch out for the wasps!

The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö - alfresco Swedish summer picnic on the beachThe CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö - alfresco Swedish summer picnic on the beachThe CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö - alfresco Swedish summer picnic on the beachThe CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö - alfresco Swedish summer picnic on the beach

– Ribersborgs Kallbadhus
If you want to experience Malmö like a true Swede you have to be brave and get in the water (this is one of the things we didn’t get round to… but more because there were so many other things to do). Established in 1898, Ribersborgs Kallbadhus is an open-air public bath, where you can swim in the ocean, relax on the sun deck or sauna and have a massage. By the way, it’s nudist!
Ribersborgs Kallbadhus, 217 59 Malmö, open 9am to 9pm daily, 9am to 6pm on Saturdays and Sundays

The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö - Ribersborgs Kallbadhus

Places to eat and drink

*Don’t miss my previous post all about the best places to enjoy fika in Malmö – the everyday ritual of taking a pause and sharing a warming cup of coffee and a conversation with a friend.*

One of the reasons we fell in love with Malmö was because of its cafe and restaurant scene, there’s everything from green-filled cafes and bucolic garden terraces to concept stores and intimate neighbourhood spots. Every place is well-designed and welcoming.  And you’ll certainly eat and drink well in this city – we enjoyed vegan cardamom buns and healthy salads, open sandwiches piled high with smoked salmon and prawns, as well as contemporary Nordic cuisine and fresh fish.

Scandi escapes: The best places to enjoy Swedish fika in Malmö Scandi escapes: The best places to enjoy Swedish fika in Malmö

– Malmö Saluhall
This indoor food market is a must for foodies, whether you want to stop for a coffee, take time over lunch or simply have a browse. Located across from the central station, the space was designed by Wingårdh Arkitektkontor AB in 2016, making use of an old, roofless freight depot on the site. Inside the weathered steel shell you’ll find ice cream masters, cheesemongers, a farm shop, pizza stalls and salad bars. We enjoyed open sandwiches in the stylish setting of Malmstens Fisk (top tip: every Friday after work during oyster season they have oysters and bubbles).
Malmö Saluhall, Gibraltargatan 6, 211 18 Malmö, open daily

The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö - Malmö Saluhall food marketThe CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö - Malmö Saluhall food marketThe CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö - Malmö Saluhall food marketThe CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö - Malmö Saluhall food market

– Bord 13
Right in the centre of the city, Bord 13 is a small restaurant with a simple menu. They try to deliver food and (natural) wine with the smallest amount of steps from soil to the table. Bord 13 offers a thoughtful set menu with a focus on seasonal, fresh, local produce – they never serve red-listed fish and shellfish and use food with as few additives as possible. They offer little amuse bouches that delight the senses between courses – we had an incredibly clear cabbage broth and a delicate dish of finely sliced mushrooms on a wafer-thin crisp. Other dishes included trout, followed by roasted globe artichokes, and finally a refreshing cucumber sorbet and meringue.
Bord 13, Engelbrektsgatan 13, 211 33 Malmö, open daily except Sundays and Mondays

The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö

Other places that were on our list:
Julie – a small wine bar in the old town
Boulebar – a cool bar housed in an old 19th century riding house where you can play boules
Lyran – an intimate restaurant serving local, Scandinavian fare
Saltimporten – a canteen in the industrial harbour offering two simple dishes a day for lunch
Bastard – a restaurant offering nose-to-tail cooking with a French focus
Johan P. – a smart fish restaurant in the centre of the city

The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in MalmöThe CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö

Shopping

AB Småland – a cafe and a lifestyle concept store – the owner describes it as a place ‘where the unexpected meets the traditional’, somewhere where you’ll find natural vegan food, plants a plenty, vintage homewares and fashion made from organic or recycled material.
AB Småland, Södra Förstadsgatan 25-27, 211 43 Malmö

The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö

Grandpa – Next door to AB Småland you’ll find this store, curated around the nordic way of life.
Grandpa, Södra Förstadsgatan 25, 211 43 Malmö
Miloii – a lovely lifestyle boutique with a mix of homeware and fashion from the likes of Ganni.
Miloii, Engelbrektsgatan 17, 211 46 Malmö

The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö

Where to stay

Ohboy Hotel
A stone’s throw from the beach and a quick bus or bicycle ride from the centre, Ohboy Hotel comprises 31 compact, loft-style apartments overlooking a skate park. Each split level room has a small kitchenette, a double bed and two bicycles to explore the city with. Our room had been decorated with a selection of unique objects by local designers and curated by Swedish design studio TypeO. There was a monochrome theme to the space, with display plinths, well-crafted easy chairs and sculptural objects – all of which could be found in the Form/Design Center in town.
Ohboy Hotel, Lilla Varvsgatan 24, 211 19 Malmö

The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö - ohboy hotel MalmöThe CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö - ohboy hotel MalmöThe CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö - ohboy hotel MalmöThe CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö - ohboy hotel MalmöThe CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö - ohboy hotel MalmöThe CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö - ohboy hotel MalmöThe CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö - ohboy hotel MalmöThe CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in Malmö - ohboy hotel Malmö

So there we have it – how to spend a stylish weekend in Malmö. Have you visited the city? What did you think and would you go again?

The CSH Travel Guide: 48 hours in MalmöAll images Cate St Hill

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#108: Science Says These Rooms Are A Waste Of Space

Welp, it’s official: new research shows that we aren’t using all of the square footage in our homes. But we sure are paying for it (and then paying to heat & cool it, decorate it, plus spending time cleaning it). Why are we doing that?! Well, this week we’re diving into a study that shows what specific spaces aren’t being used – and what we all might want to consider focusing on instead of house size – even if you love having people over and entertaining large groups. We’re also sharing a failed painting project that shines a light on some of the peculiar pitfalls of sharing your renovations with the world. Plus, as summer comes to an end, we’re taking you inside a months-long (and somewhat heated) disagreement that we’ve been having about the beach house.

You can download this episode from Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcherTuneIn Radio, and Spotify – or listen to it below! Then use this page to check out any links, notes, or photos we referenced. Note: If you’re reading in a feed reader, you may have to click through to the post to see the player.

WHAT’S NEW

  • Against my better judgment, I AM going to put in a poll so you guys can weigh in on this “friendly debate” we’ve been having about how much of our summer should be spent in Cape Charles at our beach house.

Note: There is a poll embedded within this post, please visit the site to participate in this post's poll.

That’s Embarrassing

  • Above is one of the photos of our half bathroom that we took for our second book, Lovable Livable Home, where you can’t really tell at all that we added a pearlescent topcoat to the walls (which are painted Benjamin Moore’s Edgecomb Gray, just like most of the other rooms downstairs).
  • The product we used was Benjamin Moore’s Pearlescent White Metallic Glaze and we love it in person, it’s just impossible to capture in that room in a photo (I think if we had better natural light you might be able to see it). Sherry will try to post a video later this week on Instagram Stories to help you see it.

Does Anyone Use Formal Spaces Anymore?

young house love bright modern dining room makeover home decor

  • Here is the Curbed article that got us thinking about this topic, “Our Homes Don’t Need Formal Spaces.” Coincidentally, it was written by Kate Wagner (of McMansion Hell) who authored the article about big renovation fatigue we discussed in last week’s episode.
  • And here’s the heatmap graphic from the study that shows where the people they observed spent most of their time. The single dot in the dining room cracked me up. It’s not even at the table!

  • You can also check out Episode #95 where we admitted that we think our own house is bigger than we need.
  • We also referenced our recent Episode #106, where we spoke to Shavonda Gardner about the realities of downsizing.
  • And Episode #82 includes our interview with Kevin and Mandy who live in a tiny home. Be sure to check out their Instagram to follow along with their new tiny home renovation!
  • Another old episode that tackles the topic of living in a smaller space is Episode #33 when we talked with Dana Miller about downsizing to reach financial goals.

We’re Digging

  • I know not everyone can go see Story Pirates perform in person like we did last month, but if you love their podcast as much as we do around here (I dug it back in Episode #98), we’re also really enjoying their book Stuck In The Stone Age because it has great tips for young story writers.
  • You also may remember this photo from a couple of weeks ago when I used it to show Sherry’s favorite mascara, and now it’s back to show the necklace that everyone keeps asking about (hers has a 16″ chain, a .10 stone, and it’s white gold).

If you’re looking for something we’ve dug in a past episode, but don’t remember which show notes to click into, here’s a master list of everything we’ve been digging from all of our past episodes. You can also see all the books we’ve recommended on our Book Club page.

And lastly, a big thank you to Smartstuff Furniture for sponsoring this episode. You can enter to win up to $5,000 in kid, baby, and teen furniture at SmartstuffFurniture.com/YHL now through August 27th. Also, get up to 15% off retail during their Back To School event, also ending August 27th.

Thanks for listening, guys!

*This post contains affiliate links*

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Friday Farm Favorites: A Stroll in the Garden

I really love it when ALL my ducks are in a row.  🙂

 

Ducks taking a stroll at Painswick Rococo Garden

The Cotswolds, England

 

 

Have a wonderful weekend!

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Scandi escapes: Where to enjoy Swedish fika in Malmö

This press trip was kindly sponsored by Malmö Tourism, who covered my flights, accommodation and expenses, thank you to Malmö!

99.9% of the photos taken on my recent trip to the coastal Swedish city of Malmö were of coffee shops, so naturally I thought it was a good idea to dedicate one post to the many caffeinated stops, cinnamon buns, sweet treats and cool cafes we happened upon. I’ll follow up with a broader travel guide of Sweden’s third largest city – my friend and fellow Scandinavian design enthusiast Hannah (of Copenhagen-based blog Hannah in the House) and I spent a lovely few days discovering everything the creative city has to offer – but for now the focus is firmly on fika!

Fika – that warm, much-loved Swedish tradition of coffee and a little something sweet in the afternoon. Much like the Danish word ‘hygge’, though, it encompasses so much more than a quick break and the need for a pick-me-up. It’s not really about what you eat or drink (although the tasty cinnamon buns certainly are very appealing!), but about taking time out of your day to slow down, sit with a friend or a colleague, share a moment and socialise. I think everyone could probably do with such a pause each day. In the winter, fika is often enjoyed by cosy candlelight, while in summer, Malmö’s cafes spilled outside to make the most of the unusually hot weather.

Hannah and I got very good at fika together (the Swedes also use the word as a verb), stopping every now and then to rest our weary legs, collect our thoughts, natter away, regain our energy (especially after pedalo-ing and cycling around) and of course, snap a few photos for Instagram. So, here I’ve listed 5 of my favourite places to enjoy Swedish fika in Malmö, from green-filled cafes and bucolic gardens to concept stores and intimate neighbourhood spots.

Atrium
Tucked away down a quiet street, slightly away from the central goings on of Malmö, but definitely not one to miss – Atrium is a light, airy, modern space with a calm, welcoming atmosphere. The spaces are vibrant with greenery and there’s even a gorgeous plant shop adjoining the cafe.

There’s lots of different places to sit and enjoy fika here – from people watching at the bar and cosy tables for two in the small interior rooms, to an awning-covered courtyard outside and cafe tables in the park next door. The coffee was excellent and the menu offers everything from croissants and cakes to healthy salads and eggs benedict, with several vegan options too. With the glorious sun shining, Atrium felt like it had the relaxed vibe of Melbourne, the effortlessly cool ambience of Copenhagen and the urban bustle of Amsterdam, all wrapped up into one lovely place.
Atrium, Skvadronsgatan 13, 21749 Malmö

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Noir Kaffekultur
Located in the cobbled streets of the old town, Noir is a cosy spot with plenty of outdoor cafe seating for people watching. The terrace is perfect for enjoying the warmer weather, while the cafe would also make the ideal place to shelter in the winter. Inside, the space is typically Scandinavian, with square, white metro tiles, low mood lighting and sheepskin throws. The coffee was good and they had some excellent salads when we were there – watermelon, feta cheese, red onion and green olives being one example. Bonus style points for their Skagerak ‘Edge’ mugs.
Noir Kaffekultur, Engelbrektsgatan 6, 21133 Malmö

Scandi escapes: The best places to enjoy Swedish fika in MalmöScandi escapes: The best places to enjoy Swedish fika in MalmöScandi escapes: The best places to enjoy Swedish fika in Malmö

Slottsträdgårdens Kafé
A short walk from the centre is Malmö’s oldest park, the city’s green lung, carved out by the canal that weaves it’s way through and around the old town. Across from the castle you’ll find Slottsträdgårdens Kafé, a small garden cafe with a greenhouse to sit in and outdoor picnic benches. It’s self service, so grab a free spot outside and enjoy the feeling of being surrounded by nature – it felt a bit like we weren’t really in a city at all. 

Slottsträdgårdens KaféMalmöhusvägen 8, 211 18 Malmö

Scandi escapes: The best places to enjoy Swedish fika in MalmöScandi escapes: The best places to enjoy Swedish fika in MalmöScandi escapes: The best places to enjoy Swedish fika in Malmö

AB Småland
AB Småland was another absolute favourite, sandwiched between the old town and the trendy area of St Knut. It’s both a cafe and a lifestyle concept store – the owner describes it as a place ‘where the unexpected meets the traditional’, somewhere where you’ll find natural vegan food, plants a plenty, vintage homewares and fashion made from organic or recycled material. We enjoyed a healthy lunch followed by delicious vegan cardamom buns and elderflower cordial. Once you’ve fuelled up, there’s two vast floors to explore and we could easily have spent hours here (and bought the whole shop, budget allowing…).
AB Småland, Södra Förstadsgatan 25-27, 211 43 Malmö

Scandi escapes: The best places to enjoy Swedish fika in MalmöScandi escapes: The best places to enjoy Swedish fika in MalmöScandi escapes: The best places to enjoy Swedish fika in MalmöScandi escapes: The best places to enjoy Swedish fika in MalmöScandi escapes: The best places to enjoy Swedish fika in MalmöScandi escapes: The best places to enjoy Swedish fika in MalmöScandi escapes: The best places to enjoy Swedish fika in MalmöScandi escapes: The best places to enjoy Swedish fika in Malmö

Jord – frukost, fik & butik
Jord is another place to go if you like your fika healthy, wholesome and vegan. We cooled down from the 30C temperatures with kombucha. The space is light and vibrant, with hanging plants and a mix of vintage and modern furniture. My eye was drawn to all the little details – the handwritten menu, the wifi code crocheted into a frame, the piles of magazines to read. They also have a little space selling handmade products from local artisans and manufacturers. A must visit.
Jord – frukost, fik & butik, Falsterbogatan 1, 211 58 Malmö

Scandi escapes: The best places to enjoy Swedish fika in MalmöScandi escapes: The best places to enjoy Swedish fika in MalmöScandi escapes: The best places to enjoy Swedish fika in MalmöScandi escapes: The best places to enjoy Swedish fika in MalmöScandi escapes: The best places to enjoy Swedish fika in MalmöScandi escapes: The best places to enjoy Swedish fika in MalmöAll images Cate St Hill

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House Crashing: A Jaw-Dropping Old House Transformation

It goes without saying that we’ve always been suckers for a good before & after (show me someone who isn’t and I’ll show you someone who hates fun). But thanks to our adventures in 100-year-old-beach-house-renovations over the past few years, we’re especially fond of seeing people bringing old houses back to their glory. Oh the things you’ll find behind the walls! So when Mandy shared photos of she and her husband Joe’s project in nearby Charlottesville, VA, we were basically cooing over them like two pigeons discovering an old pizza crust on a New York City subway platform.

Even without furniture (they fixed it up and then sold it before even needing to furnish it) the transformation is stunning. They also named the house “Blanche” (you know I’ve never met an inanimate object I didn’t want to name) since she is a classic old beauty – built in 1901 on a great street. Blanche had great bones, but was suffering from years of neglect. So let’s tell Blanche’s story and share a whole bunch of eye-bulging before and afters, shall we?

Here’s Blanche as she looked when they bought her:

The house was essentially a full gut job – including tearing off a wobbly deck, hacking through an overgrown yard, and accumulating three dumpsters-worth of rubble across several weekends. Oh, and a few weeks into demo Mandy and her husband found out they were expecting a baby… meaning their house project deadlines were soon up against a pregnancy deadline. Gulp!

But fret not, here’s Blanche now. TOTAL STUNNER, amIright? Actually she’s all landscaped with grass now, so she’s even cuter, but Mandy didn’t even get a chance to photograph that since a buyer swooped in and grabbed it before they got to that stage.

They reused or brought back as many historic elements as they could: baseboards, trim, mantles, doors, etc. The many dated layers of wallpaper, however, didn’t make the cut. Although creativity points for this use of a border along the stairway by someone years ago (this is a before shot):

Here’s that same view during demo, which gives us serious flashbacks to this stage of things at the pink house and this stage of things at the duplex!

The finished foyer, like much of the house, now sports classic colors (gray, brown, white), along with matte finishes and warm woods. I love how your eyes travel to that charming wooden back door with that giant pane of glass. And the cool sliding door on the left (with a double transom window on top) makes me want to scream HUBBA HUBBA! #zerochill Also she scored that gorgeous light on craigslist!

There’s lots to be envious of in this foyer, but the original millwork that survived on the side of the steps is one of my favorite details (so rare when rot spares the perfect thing – it reminds us of this miracle at our pink house). Also, check out the amazing light that comes in through that front door situation. Gimme allllll the glass.

Speaking of getting to save gorgeous original details, the hardwood floors, stairs, and handrail were all refinished to enhance the lovely old pine throughout the entire house. (And you know we love old pine floors…).

Let’s move on to the dining room. Here’s a before shot for ya:

And here’s an after. LOVE the mantel they added in front of the original chimney, and the built-ins with glass doors and marble tops (along with that marble fireplace) are so classic and pretty. Actually those upper cabinets with the glass doors were found at a salvage place called Caravati’s here in Richmond. Also, I see you transom windows! Looking fyyyyyneeee.

The kitchen is one of the coolest updates that they tackled. They stole space from the attic to bump the kitchen ceiling into an arch and then covered it with reclaimed wood boards that they saved from the house during demo. It ended up being Mandy’s favorite project in the house. I mean, I can see why.

Here’s one more shot because I can’t get enough. The antique light fixtures came from an old barn here in Virginia (purchased through a salvage shop). That wood ceiling + the stone floors + marble tops = FIRE.

And remember that wood door you could see in the background of the foyer shot? Well, they turned it into a super functional mudroom in the back of the house. This is that space before…

Here’s the same spot during demo…

And here’s the after! Mandy incorporated salvaged items from other buildings if they were missing or damaged in the house. The mudroom’s tin ceiling was from a restaurant in Alabama (purchased on eBay). The light fixtures were old salvage finds too.

LOVE how much they reused and how many other old items were looped into this home’s history – via ebay, salvage, and beyond! Here’s a demo shot of the upstairs hall:

And here’s an after shot of the same space. They doubled the light and added that amazing built-in bench underneath the giant panes of glass. IT’S BASICALLY HEAVEN IN A HALLWAY.

Here’s one of the bedrooms during demo:

And here’s the after. They discovered a part of the ceiling could be lofted and reused all of the original trim. The little rosettes in the corners of the windows KILL ME. I’m typing this from the grave.

We have the same original rosettes and trim downstairs in the pink house (we were able to save just enough to do that level but had to use new molding upstairs).

And now for a bathroom before. I know what you’re thinking. “How thorough of them to wallpaper the bottom half of that pipe.”

And here’s the very same bathroom after they worked their magic. One of the coolest things about this renovation is that all of the sinks were purchased on Criagslist (from old homes in Richmond or Stony Point). And amazingly, all the faucets and hardware were original and in working condition!

How charming is that old frosted window they hooked in front of the exterior window for flair? LOVE.

So a huge thank you to Mandy for sharing such inspiring and exciting before and afters! I know it might seem really far fetched to imagine yourself fixing up one of these older homes, but I’m telling you, just three or four years ago I probably would have said “that’s cool but way too hardcore for me!” – and yet here we are, doing it with not one but two houses on the Eastern Shore of Virginia.

I think just like they say “when you know, you know” about meeting The One, well… there are house soul mates too. And when you walk in (or even drive by) sometimes you get that feeling… and lookout! You might just end up walking through with a contractor “just to get an idea about the extent of a project like that” and then you’ll blink your eyes, and find yourself knee deep in your very own old-house renovation project. HA! It happened not once, but twice for us. One house apart on the same street! Here are all the posts about the pink house if you wanna catch up, and here’s everything about the duplex

My biggest tip would be to get estimates from tons of experts even before you buy a house, just to be sure you can afford to fix it up, and to assemble the very best team that you can (we asked nearly two dozen people who their favorite people to work with in Cape Charles were, and very quickly noticed a trend as the same contractor and flooring people and other experts’ names kept coming up again and again). The right team, even if it takes longer to assemble, can make ALL THE DIFFERENCE!

Happy house-rescuing to you and yours!

(Photos by Kristen Finn)

The post House Crashing: A Jaw-Dropping Old House Transformation appeared first on Young House Love.

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ARETHA

“Respect yourself enough to walk away from anything that no longer serves you, grows you, or makes you happy.”

~Robert Tew

 

“In youth, it was a way I had,

To do my best to please.

And change, with every passing lad (person)

To suit his theories.

But now I know the things I know

And do the things I do,

And if you do not like me so,

To hell, my love, with you.”

 

~Dorothy Parker, The Complete Poems of Dorothy Parker

 

 

Have a wonderful day!

 

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Tuesday Tunes: Jerusalem

The Cotswolds, England

 

England doesn’t have a national anthem; however, unofficially, the beautiful “Jerusalem” hymn is seen as such by many English people.  “Jerusalem” was originally written as a poem by William Blake in 1804.  The lyrics, written by Hubert Parry, were added to music in 1916 during the gloom of WWI when an uplifting new English hymn was well received and needed.

 

“Bring me my bow of burning gold!

Bring me my arrows of desire!

Bring me my spear! O clouds, unfold!

Bring me my chariot of fire!

I will not cease from mental fight,

Nor shall my sword sleep in my hand,

Till we have built Jerusalem

In England’s green and pleasant land.”

 

 

Jerusalem

 

After visiting a number of wonderful art galleries in the Cotswolds as well as spending the last week in England’s “green and pleasant land,” I was inspired by this country’s many breathtaking landscapes to pass a delightful afternoon painting.  Here’s the result. 🙂

“Sea Dreams” 8.5 x 11.5″ acrylic on canvas.

by Tonya Rieley Hengerer

 

Enjoy your day!

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Through the Garden Gate

 

“Everything that slows us down and forces patience, everything that sets us back into the slow circles of nature, is a help.  Gardening is an instrument of grace.”

 

~May Sarton

 

Photographs taken by Tonya R. Hengerer at Hidcote Manor Gardens and Kiftsgate Court Gardens in Gloucestershire, England–the Cotswolds

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