Catching Up…Summer Days and Lazy Ways

I don’t know about you, but the month of June flew by for me.  I missed sharing with you here on my blog, but life happens.  It’s certainly nice to come back to my little corner of the world wide web though.  🙂  Here’s a bit of what we’ve been up to…please pardon the long post.

retirement peonies: Cozycakes Cottage

It seems we’ve been up to a lot while other days we’re able to laze about and do a whole lot of nothing.  It’s been a good mix.  Munchie finished preschool and will be heading off to pre-k in the fall.  That doesn’t come without some emotions.  Wimpy mama over here.  I’ll distract my overactive tear ducts with a picture of some beautiful peonies Trader Joe’s carried for only 1 day.  1 day!  What a tease.  I grabbed a bunch for my peony-loving mom-in-law and myself.

zero days retirement sign

Speaking of my mom-in-law, we celebrated her retirement from teaching (hurrah!) a couple of weeks ago.  We had a backyard celebration with lots of garden fresh flowers, friends & family, and a yummy street taco bar catered by a taqueria.  I filled the dessert table and printed off the little chalkboard sign below for table décor.  Isn’t it cute?

Now both of my in-laws are retired and are jet-setting to Europe (England, France, Ireland) this summer just as retirees should.  I’m very happy for them and a wee bit jealous.  I have really fond memories of our trip to Europe a couple of years ago.  One day I’ll share a few pictures from that trip when Munchie was merely a 1-year old and I developed an ugly and embarrassing case of heat rash in Russia during a performance of Swan Lake–no one returned to our aisle after intermission.  I suspect it had to do with me scratching madly at myself nonstop.  Good times. 🙂

mama eggplant

In between play dates, swimming, walks, and crafting (I’ve been crafting!) we took a road trip to visit my family.  My mom and dad have such a gorgeous yard.  That’s a picture of one of my mom’s baby eggplants.  I brought some back with me and have cooked them up just the way she always has for me.  I love the story of how she craved eggplant cooked the same way when she was pregnant with me.  Coincidentally, when I was pregnant with Munchie I craved the exact same recipe.  It comforts me when I’m able to make recipes that connect me to home.  Makes my little homesick being feel a tad bit better.

DSC_0887 garden bench mama pm

My parents have little spots throughout their large backyard for relaxing.  If it hadn’t been 110°, I might’ve planted myself on this bench with a book for a bit.  Not happening.

 winnie and duck tea party

Back at home, Munchie and I have had a few impromptu tea parties.  Even her “friends” have tea.  She doesn’t want to leave anyone out.

duke lounging

And, as I mentioned, there has been much lazing about as demonstrated by Duke.  We call this his Malaise Way.  His “stop looking at me, what, you’ve never seen a person REST before?” look.  One day he’ll find out he’s a dog and that the dog bed on the floor is for HIM and who knows what he’ll do then.  I imagine there’ll be tears and some huffing.

blue onion

Aside from organizing & continually purging items we no longer need (I’m addicted to purging!), I’ve enjoyed reading late into the night, many cups of tea, spending time with dear friends, having cozy date nights at home with my easy-going husband (usually including a good show or movie and ice cream), driving Munchie to and from activities like summer camp and swim lessons, and pretty, but practical gifts like the ones pictured above.  My husband’s grandmother gave me two sets of china recently and I’m just in love with them.  One set is from England and the other from Japan.  In this home, china IS practical.  I’m all for using and enjoying pretty things instead of relegating them to dust catchers.

meakin stack

Here’s a stack of the second set she gave me.  They’re all sitting out on my counters because I want to keep looking at them and can’t bear to shove them away in a cupboard.  So out they’ll sit until I come up with a better way to display them.  A little hutch purchase is likely in my near future.

purple dahlia bouquet

I’m the lucky recipient of many, many flower bouquets each summer, courtesy of my father-in-law.  Among others, he grows a gazillion varieties of dahlias.  I love the pastel ones best–look at that speckled one.  So pretty.  I have bouquets in every room downstairs, but I think I’ll start bringing them into the bedrooms.  A nice sight first thing in the morning.

july 1 calendar

Each morning Munchie flips this little calendar to a new day.  I couldn’t believe it when it said “July 1” yesterday.  Can you?

kitchen door usa love

Every holiday involves Munchie decorating our kitchen door with window stickers or jellies.  Yesterday she decorated for one of her favorite holidays.  A little patriotism from a 4-year old.  And with that, I wish you all a relaxing and laughter-filled summer.  Hope you’re able to put your feet up a bit and reenergize.  I’ll be back soon with a few recipes and hope you’ll stop by again soon.  ♥



  1. This all sounds – well just perfect. Thank you for sharing a bit of your life. ❤

  2. Love love love all around

  3. Sounds like a wonderfully fun summer you’re having so far!! Keep enjoying and making fond memories! 🙂

  4. dearjes says:

    I love the pretty teacups! and what a great photo too! Such a talent! xoxo

  5. Agreed, better to use beautiful china than leave it to catch dust!

  6. I love lazy summer day! It is always nice to go home no matter how old we get!

  7. Awesome post, D! LOVE LOVE LOVE the photos and the china….swoon! 😉
    love ya,

  8. What a wonderful post Danielle and a busy life. Love your china. I agree china should be out an used and enjoyed… and not just for dust. We were talking about this last night at work. Have a great 4th of July.

  9. I LOVE your parents’ garden and that you get flowers all the time!

  10. Love pheonies and I said the same and did use the china silver left or given to me. That is what its for to enjoy!

  11. Looks like you’re having a great summer so far!

  12. That post was like a bit of “fresh air”. Thank you for sharing.

  13. LOVE the retirement sign…what a lucky mother-in-law to have you! And peonies?! My favorite flower! It’s all I had in my wedding bouquet. Ralph’s had them for awhile but they were gone by my anniversary. 😦

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