Sunday, October 26, 2014

Halloween at Jolie's

When the handmade invite to Jolie's Halloween party arrived in the mail, I knew where I was headed on Friday October 24th. Jolie's parties are not to be missed. She is a masterful cook and decorator plus I like her guest list so her party is always an Event! Her daughter Casey is following in her footsteps as she is a talented young woman too.

A fog machine was used to create a spooky mist over the living room. White sheets strewn over the sofa and chairs gave the room a creepy abandoned look. Did I mention the house was built in the 1700's? Who knows what ghosts lurk there?

My sister dressed as a minuteman and looked a little ghostly in the fog room.

There is a pub in the house. Jello "shots" for all who enter the bar area.

Aidan tried his darndest to look ghastly. His Ipad illuminated his face and gave him an eerie look.

Even the family dog, Buddy, got in on the act. Buddy was dressed as a sailor and he was strutting his stuff at the party.

Casey put on a scary face but in real life she is too pretty to be scary.

I mentioned that Jolie is a masterful cook. Oh my, yes. Mini quiches, ham salad wraps, chicken wings, pulled pork sliders, shrimp on skewers, etc. All so delicious.

Back at the pub, pirates took over the bartending. Aargh!

And we had a visit from a flapper and a gangster. I guess the bar was not a pub but a speakeasy.

Eew! Someone had a little run in with the meat slicing machine!

More spookiness in the living room.

The table in the dining room was beautifully illuminated. This is where the desserts were housed.

Eek!  Mice under glass. I will pass on that dessert. Looks like the mice got at it anyway.

I am glad that Jolie was able to sit down for a minute and enjoy her friends.

We all decided to rest at the end of the night. Time for the honeycrisp apple pie, whoopee pies with orange cream, and shortbread "fingers".
Wishing everyone a Happy Halloween!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Salvaging a Church

Ten years ago, Sacred Heart Church in Lowell closed it's doors to parishioners. Today, it is being converted into condos.

My friend and my cat's foster mom, Diane, drives by this church on her way to work. She stopped in and spoke with the builder and she came away with some of the items they weren't going to use in the new design. (More about that later in this post)

I was lucky enough to get a tour of the building and see some of the incredible beauty of Sacred Heart Church. I certainly was sad to hear of the church closing and of the current renovation. I do think it's the right decision to repurpose the building however. It would be a crime to just board it up.

Some of the windows have been removed but some were purchased in memory of a family member and it looks like they will be kept. That is the right thing to do.

This set of windows is absolutely stunning! The church was built between 1883 and 1896. Such craftsmanship back then.

Construction is in full swing on this Saturday morning.

The woodwork and carvings, the plaster, the stained glass. it is all so magnificent.

The ceiling is equally stunning. Some of the lights have already been removed.

Look at the detail on the plasterwork and the sweet cherub peeking out from the rafters.

It makes such an impressive entry.

 Another view of the little cherubs.

Love these carvings and the wood. Can you imagine carving that? Just beautiful.

Here's the outside of the church.

We drove to a warehouse which Diane's father owns and Diane showed me the collection of plaster corbels that were going to be demolished.

And church windows. Love the lace pattern!

The windows from the back of the church have a nice shape.

This one is mine! I got to pick the best ones for myself.

She has quite a few of the windows.

And many corbels.

How would you repurpose one?

I think a pair of these might make a fantastic shelf or one of the smaller ones would make a beautiful sconce with a candle on the top.

Diane has been inspired to go into the architectural salvage business after working on this project. I think she has a knack for it and she certainly has the space. I look forward to seeing this new business flourish!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Come with me now

I love to walk around the neighborhood but I rarely do it. So this morning after I moved my car so the painters could work on the house, I realized it would be the perfect morning to take a walk.

I started walking in the direction of Winchester. I noticed my neighbor's shrubs were steaming and I stopped to take a photo. Not sure you can see the steam but it was there.

My sister and I have recently had conversations about being more present and more aware in our lives. So I took time to notice EVERYTHING!  At first I thought I saw a white cat in this garden. Turns out there were 2 cat statues. Cute.

There's quite a party on the lawn of this house. Love the dancing skeletons. They were having a great time this morning.

So the meteorologist said we are not a peak color yet in the Boston area. It looks peak to me.

  From the cords attached to these pumpkins I guess we have some illumination going on at night. Perhaps a return visit in the evening is in order.

And my house, probably the last photo taken with the gold exterior. Soon to be Mayflower Red, Waterbury Cream trim and Clinton Brown accents. More on that later.

So what else did I see on my be present in your life walk? Not too much litter I am happy to say, just one soda bottle and one little nip glass bottle. One couch and a loveseat reclining outside someone's house. Another couch in front of a different house. One blind child sign, 2 women walking their dogs, 1 child walking her dog Oreo, a King Cavalier who had a wiggly butt and jumped excitedly all over me. Wet leaves stuck to car windshields and hoods. Very few cars on the road or people around at 8:45 on a Sunday morning. I saw Boston Marathon victim and survivor Marc Fucarile climbing the steps to his mother's home very gingerly. His child with him and an ice coffee in hand he was greeted warmly by his brother at the front door. Family time on a Sunday morning.

As for me, back home to my 3 kitties and some breakfast.  All is well in my little neighborhood on this Sunday morning.


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