Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Magically Practical

Hereford Light

The Lighthouse near my cottage Beach House reminds me of the house they used in  the movie Practical Magic.

The styles are similar. I believe they are both called Victorian Gothic.
The lighthouse tower is similar to the "widow's watch" they both have pretty white picket fences,  lush gardens and the sea beyond.

House in Movie


And for a picture of Hereford Lighthouse in 1911 Click Here

Glowing in the night!
Hereford lighthouse, Anglesea, NJ

This is actually a working lighthouse and at night it is all aglow. In the early 1960's it had fallen into disrepair and was a mess. It's windows were broken and the shutters falling off and crooked. It looked like the wacky shack. There is a legend that goes with the light house that the wife of the sea captain went a bit stir crazy waiting for her husband to return at the turn of the century. And that when she died her spirit stayed behind in the spooky lighthouse, still awaiting his return.. Every now and then as kids we thought we could see her ghosts in the window. The campaign to save it was launched in 1982 or there abouts and it has been beautified and bought back to its original splendor.
All these years later, People are always in and out, the lovely gardens, and although my kids didn't exactly fall for the ghosts story. It just wasn't practical to them!  But to their surprise one day they were taking pictures of each other in the lighthouse gardens and  later after dinner, when they looked at the pictures there seemed to be a mysterious shadow in the background.

And the house in the Practical Magic Movie

To my surprise, the grounds are also on a very, very similar lot. here is a link to the rendition of the grounds in the script. They specifically ask to not copy it or I would have included it here, it is surely worth a look though!
Below is the sattelite view of the lighthouse and gardens...I was dumfounded when I discovered this.  The lighthouse is among all the greenery. That is the lighthouse gardens. The rock seawall just recently got a pave over with concrete so people could walk along the ocean, a promenade, so to speak. But for years there were just mounds of rock seawall .. The settings in the script are so similar!!  To go see them CLICK HERE  Just the floor plans can not be reproduced..

Below is a rendition of the gardens, rocks and ocean beyond and part of the house, in the movie.

Of course this is my favorite lighthouse.  Below is a peak at the gardens at the lighthouse:

I have always been drawn to this area of the Wildwoods. When the kids were little we stayed at hotels near the boardwalk, for our weekly vacations. But I always came to this area, and stood at the seawall to take in the view. It is gorgeous. Now I am lucky enough to have a Cottage just steps away! Yes, magically, dreams really do come true.

That's a little bit of my story..

Joining in the Practical Magic blog party

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

A Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread

Having teenagers certainly has it's perks. My daughter likes to bake. Considering I'm not much of a baker, this is a very nice thing to have happen. Recently she decided to make us a Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread. Emmm, emmm, good! A celebration of Fall's arrival.

Some nice pumpkin color around here.. had I been prepared for this moment,
I'd have pulled out the harvest tablecloth..

I was thrilled when she said she was going to bake this morning, and as I jumped up and down with glee, she said
 " Oh Mom, what are you going to do blog it?'" 
I'd love to blog it sweetie, why don't you take some pics as you go along? I eagerly gently suggested.

So this is her first attempt at little vignettes. I suspect she might enjoy this.

Adding the cinnamon
             The recipe.


  • 3 cups white sugar
  • 1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 4 eggs
  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon ground nutmeg
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour three 1 pound size coffee cans, or three 9x5 inch loaf pans.
  2. In a large bowl, combine sugar, pumpkin, oil, water, and eggs. Beat until smooth. Blend in flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, and salt. Fold in chocolate chips and nuts. Fill cans 1/2 to 3/4 full.
  3. Bake for 1 hour, or until an inserted knife comes out clean. Cool on wire racks before removing from cans or pans.

Nutritional Information open nutritional information

Amount Per Serving  Calories: 177 | Total Fat: 6.9g | Cholesterol: 24mg
Folding all the ingredients in nicely...

Add lots of chocolate chips!!.. Mom, can I add more?

It's your show baby, do what you want!

Add the yummy goodness to your pans.

Bake 1 hour at 350*
While the aroma fills the house with pumpkinny goodness.

And the reveal..........

Her wonderful presentation.

Isn't it lovely?

  Pssst she said, " Mom now I know why you like to blog..
 It is sort of fun taking those pictures!"

I think she really does have a knack for this. Don't you?

Monday, September 20, 2010

Not yet ready for Fall

The last few weeks of Summer are the most savored for me. As long as it is still beach weather, I can hardly bear to think of The Fall. When I drive down the shore and I see the leaves changing then I will feel the season.
And I will invariably enjoy it to it's full extent.  I just had to share these pics from our last few jaunts to the beach. We often walk back through the lighthouse gardens, to get home to our little cottage. Me and my beach bums. Sometimes we are lucky enough to pass the sprinklers when they are on, and we catch a nice spray on our heated walk back from the beach. ...It just feels delightful.
Entering the cool gardens...

The perennials take on an end of summer hue

Just sucking up the last bits of me

And back in the Bay, when the sun set, it was a glorious summer evening

When Fall really arrives people will begin to put their boats away. They will shrink wrap them in protective plastic and dry dock them somewhere safe from the Nor'easters that ravage the area in winter.
And my little Beach town will be a ghost town.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Cottage Beach House Decor Balls

I was browsing around in Michaels craft store one day a few weeks ago, and spotted these decor balls.
I took this picture right there on the floor with my i phone.

And my brain got to thinking, yeah I can make them.

So I am sure because great minds think alike that someone else out there in bloggie land
has also made these in one form or another. So Kudos to all the great minds who have made these balls too.
I was going to make them with the styrofoam balls they sell at Michaels, but they were a bit pricey so I used some $1.00 nerf balls from the dollar store and also some baseballs I had laying around,
and twine, as below.

And of course some hot glue.

You just start at one end and glue and twirl. I've used twine and regular rope, and sisal rope.

The first 2 are twine.

The one below is with sisal rope.

I love the natural color. I use them on my coffee table with my latest vintage pitcher finds

 I wrapped some in real fisherman's netting and hung on the towel ladder for a nautical look at the entrance to the bathroom.

And here they are again in a grouping with a couple of other items. A store bought monkey ball and a wicker ball. ( haven't figured out how to make the wicker ones yet... the monkey balls I make are much smaller )

The results are a lot of fun. And I actually love making them!

Showing them off at 
Linking up:

Flaunt it Friday #25

Saturday, September 11, 2010

I am Itching to hit the thrifts again. My favorite Haul.

Last week I found some super items at the local thrift. Can not find time this week, yet.

Lovely Prussia China bowl

To die for.. Vintage Silver Pitcher

Which looked like this when I picked it up
amazing what a little polish can do

And who could resist these two adorable pitchers for the Cottage??
Not me....I always had a thing for pitchers...
2 in one day...yowlsie..

And the Battenburg lace.. I will not admit what I paid!.. yes I will.. 2 bucks, and it is perfect.


I even got the most adorable, perfect, chip free porcelain cooking pot! All in one day!

Last week was a great thrifting haul. I wanna go again!..

But it was soooo nice on the beach i just had to stay there!
So the thrifting treasures will be left to others!

Happy hunting.. or sunning...

Robin's Egg Blue and the Deep Blue Seas

A collection of all the pictures I've taken in the last 9 months that have lovely shades
 of Sea Blue, and Robin's Egg blue

Hawaii January 2010

 The Gulf of Mexico
Manasota Beach Florida  April 2010

Boca Grande Florida 
April 2010

  A Sail off the coast Manasota Beach

shelling and swimming Manasota Beach florida,
April 2010

Back in Jersey my little cottage by the Sea.

The slipcovered fabric on my sofa is called summer stripe.

The Atlantic Ocean and my grandbaby Sadie

Grammy takin it easy!

Robins egg blue table I found at Home Goods

 The Cottage  Beach House front porch walls are painted robins egg blue.

 Heaven is a little closer in a Cottage by the Sea!

SNS #47 brings you - robin's egg blue
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