Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Spring at Our Cottage

Spring has sprung in DC, AGAIN! After being teased repeatedly by Mother Nature, it finally feels like spring is here to stay. Tom and I couldn't be more thrilled!

The gardens at our cottage are brimming with fresh growth. Every day brings new discoveries. From muscaris to scillas, there are thousands of bulbs blooming. Yes, thousands! The show started with snowdrops and crocuses on the big lawn, and now, daffies and hyacinths in the borders are doing their things. We are grateful to the previous owners who planted profusely and passionately.

I've been a busy bee marking everything as there are plans to redesign, regroup and refresh the gardens. So much for downsizing and simplifying. Actually I told Tom that this property will be lower maintenance, and I intend to keep my promise. Please remind me as you know how I am easily tempted by those manicured gardens - ok? 😉

More to come. In the meantime, here's a sneak peek....
Well, March certainly is living up to its reputation of "in like a lion and out like a lamb." Just a couple weeks ago, snow blanketed our Tudor, and spring seemed so distant (with much concern for the fate of the cherry blossoms). BTW, we are spending our last days at the Tudor before moving to the cottage soon.

Today, the snow is gone, and good news: the cherry blossoms made it through just fine. Here is one starting to bloom in front of our new home.
Built in 1928, the original stucco was deteriorating. Tom and I decided it was time to restucco, and hired Robey, Inc to do the work. They have patiently and meticulously worked with us to restucco both the house and garage. We're so pleased with everything including the texture plus color - a neutral greige. I look forward to sharing closeups of the final work.  
Throughout the property, I've staked and marked various flowering bulbs. There are many, many clumps of Tete-a-Tete daffodils, which are usually the earliest daffies to bloom.
I am 90% sure the beauties above are Pink Charm daffodils.
Also blooming now are pink, white and purple hyacinths. They are incredibly fragrant.
I couldn't resist picking a few generous bunches to enjoy inside in our freshly painted entry mudroom. The arched window with leaded glass is one of my favorite features.
H a p p y  S p r i n g !


  1. How beautiful Loi! You have inspired me to be a more organized "flower grower" this year and I look forward to many more visits!

  2. Beautiful!


  3. Hello Loi, I don't know where you get the energy to tackle one major project after another! You were lucky to get so many existing flowers with your new house, although I am sure that you are planning to make many changes and additions. The vignette with the window and the flowers looks great!

  4. Stunning! Absolutely stunning!

  5. Hi Loi,

    Both exteriors are beautiful, with their own period details, but I can't wait to see the interiors of your adorable cottage, especially after this sneak peak today! The vignette you have created with your first cheery daffodils is pretty. I love the architectural details of both the arched window and the stucco work on the walls.

    Happy Spring!


  6. Beautiful grounds and beautiful home; best wishes on this newest adventure! More pictures please! Always looks forward to new posts!

  7. Love,love daffodils and I definitely need to plant them here at the new house!! what spring inspiration you posted!!

  8. Dear Loi,
    Your cottage is so, so charming. I can not wait to see more, especially the interior.
    Your spring flowers are beautiful, especially the daffodils.
    Enjoy settling in. I know how you must be so anxious to move in.

  9. AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! You did it. You took my breath away. Loi, I wish you and Tom LOADS of fun in this magical cottage! The yellow, does it look fantastic with your white and signature grey! THAT WINDOW! WANT!!!!!

  10. Just gorgeous and so cheerful! Thanks Loi!

  11. So fun to see both beautiful homes. They are both really special and wonderful. Thanks for sharing. I always love your photos from home, in DC and Maine :-)

  12. Hello Loi,
    Your new cottage looks fabulous and I am sure you and Tom will add your personal touches. You have white wellington boots, I am envious.
    Fondest wishes
    Helen xx

  13. Beautiful pictures. What a wonderful surprise to have your garden full of these blooming spring bulbs! Your house looks straight out of a storybook! I am sure you and Tom will make it perfect again! Have a great spring!

  14. Happy Springtime and new beginnings oxox

  15. Wow!! How incredibly wonderful to see all of the spring blooms!! I hope that you tell us just how you are marking and documenting where the bulbs are. I see stakes with letters and numbers. In love with your mudrokm window! Gorgeous area but with you at the helm every inch of the house will be so amazing!! Happy Spring!

  16. Loi,
    Your new home is so charming already. You really are magical where homes are concerned.

  17. Loi,
    Your cottage is a charmer and already enchanting. The mudrooms arched window is beyond charming and those touches with white and the yellow daffodils in those pretty pitchers simply amazing. Wishing you and Tom much joy in your new home and garden.

  18. I am incredibly excited to see your new gardens and the special touch only you can bring to them! Our last DC snow was short and beautiful but I'm afraid my English garden roses were not as happy to see it as we were. All of their new shoots died off after the storm. Hoping their first bloom will be as magnificent as always. Enjoy your last few days in the Tudor!

  19. Home sweet home! I am so excited for a sneak peak and your beautiful new home! How wonderful to arrive to a plethora of Spring flowers! A welcome sight to be sure. I love your idea of marking each group. You are always a source of inspiration for me beacause I do not have a green thumb.

    I hope that you have a wonderful weekend! Looking forward to seeing and hearing more about your new place. How do the pups like it?

  20. Loi! I'm drooling, as always. Big puddles of slobber next to my keyboard as I zoom in on the stucco, stone-work and the CHARMING details of the new house. Please know I will 100% understand if you can't--but we are {hopefully} moving to a stucco home around the corner, and I'd love to know the shade of your stucco. I'm having a hard time pinning down cream/white without it going too white or too yellow. You've NAILED the color, as usual! Sending hugs to you and Tom as you embark on all the to-do's of another project! Amanda

  21. Lovely, lovely, as usual! So many daffs...aren't you lucky! We are all waiting impatiently to see the many renovations in this new house (and gardens..)

  22. I just found this blog and have high hopes for it to continue. Keep up the great work, its hard to find good ones. I have added to my favorites. Thank You.
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  23. Beautiful, what an experiance to design around this much beauty.
    Looking forward to all you share from this cottage.

    Enjoy your own flower market here.


  24. Looking forward to seeing the finished cottage. Nice flowers too.

  25. Hello Loi. I can see that I have a lot to catch up on after my very long break away from the world of blogs. Your cottage and gardens look lovely. For my part I always considered myself a one colour daffodil person (such as the standard King Alfred type) but I recently discovered a beautiful variety called 'Aphrodite's Dream'. It has creamy white petals and a pale pink cup. I really like it and intend to grow more of them. I wonder if you can get them in the US? Bye for now, Kirk.

  26. Loi, your new place could not be more charming! And I can't wait to see what you do with the gardens. Good luck with the move! xoxo

  27. Loi, only just seeing this post - and am loving it!
    Your new cottage is awesome - can't wait to see more.
    Garden must be gorgeous too - you and Tom really pick beautiful houses and with your magic turn them into fabulous homes.

    Happy springtime. We're off to Sicily and Malta soon - will catch up with you in May to see what you've been doing to keep busy. . . . . . very busy I'm sure of that.

    Mary x

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  30. As someone who intends to downsize her gardens at some point...keep your promise!! Keep it simple. When I get back in shape I plan to add more grasses and easy care plants to my garden. Your new place is charming...


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  32. You had me at one photo: The one with the daffodils on those creamy pitchers. Would you please provide the details on the pitchers? I want to buy them! I'm so happy to have discovered your blog! Please keep up the lovely work!

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Many thanks for your visit! If you have a question, please leave a comment and I will do my best to answer. Loi