Thursday, July 1, 2010

Summer Sanctuary ~ Cottage Style

Have you ever been to a place where you lost track of the days and time?

Grab your flip flops and come with me to a simpler time, where the sound of a slamming screen door and happy children warms your heart, reminding you of a time when life moved a little slower, was full of wonder and memories were
made to last a life time, even generations.

 Summer is in full swing in our small beloved beach community. Last weekend kicked it off with the annual opening of the beach fundraiser and beach run. Both events raise money to help keep our beach safe and protected for our enjoyment and the generation’s to follow. After all, many of the folks who live in our community are second and third generation residents…

We look forward to annual summer traditions like the first community wood stove breakfast of the season. While we’re all still sleeping, one of our very generous and ambitious neighbor’s gets up before dawn and stokes up the old wood stove outside getting it ready for banana nut hotcakes, scrambled eggs, baked beans, hash, and when we're really living high on the hog, home fries! We bring a thermos of home brewed percolated coffee and a little something to add to the hot dishes and wait for our name to be called when our plate is ready.

We’ve been doing this so long that the cook knows what everyone likes. We like to rough it! I like to think of it as our equivalent to Mary Jane’s Outpost idea BEACH style. We use a clothes line which is located right next to our out door solar shower… There’s nothing like a nice cool shower after a long day of gardening, walking, fishing for crab and striper, or a boat ride around the island.

Did I mention we have no TV or Internet? Some people have upgraded their solar systems’ enough to invite technology into their beach life, but we're holding out! Instead, we encourage fun and games of the old fashioned sort. Remember croquet'? Badminton, paddle ball, blowing bubbles, and capture the flag? how about a whiffle ball game on the beach or a game of flag football?  With no electronics's to distract is, we get plenty of  R n R too! Reading and relaxing.  We  do use our cell phones but only if we have too! This is a remote area with no services and we like it that way! We do have one store which plays into another summer tradition. The Candy Store run by resident volunteers out of their cottage is open during the summer months. All  funds go to the beach association.  We try to help any way we can and it does my heart good to know I'm only a short walk away from my nearest chocolate fix!

Many of the residents grow a vegetable garden and share their harvests! It’s on my ever growing farmgirl to- do list to grow one too but it’ll have to wait until next spring along with a chicken coop.

Shh, don’t tell my sweet husband about that one yet! Imagine, fresh eggs right out your back door!

When you are 45 minutes from the nearest store, it’s nice to be able to grab a fresh ripe tomato right off the vine or some crisp lettuce and scallions for salad makin’s. If you do grow a garden a raised bed is the only way to go… The wild bunnies will nibble away at everything otherwise.

The cottages in our beach community come in all shapes and sizes and with a variety of amenities. Most are solar/ gas powered because we are located on a sand bar with no access to grid power. We share a common interest in conservation as individuals’ and as residents of our community. We are only the lucky stewards of our homes for a short time and it’s our turn now to teach our children the important lessons of
community, each other, and conservation.

Beach- style

Some folks still use a keeper for daily necessities (if you know what I mean) and we use collected gray water to flush our indoor potty via a solar pump. That’s our water tank with all those pretty pink lambs’ ears growing in front of it next to our cottage.

To say we are honored to have this little slice of heaven to escape to is hardly sufficient… What we are is blessed, ten times over. It’s been my husband’s home away from home during the summer months since before he was school age.  That will make our two children third generation when their turn comes!

Nope, it’s not a big old farmhouse where I feel most like a farmgirl. (Though I do dream of one and a horse or two to go with it  ) It’s in a tiny (just less than 500 square feet) rustic, one bedroom beach cottage on a big grassy lot surrounded by stone walls, and a wide open sky where this farmgirl feels right at home.

It's where we shed the worries of the world and re -connect with each other and mother nature.

( My oh my, that trim certainly needs painting doesn't it?)

              It's fourth of July and Summer’s here!

 Shout your patriotism from the roof tops! Say a prayer for our troops and their safe return home. We're forever grateful to them for all the wonderful freedom's and opportunities this great nation affords us as Americans.

Get out there and catch some fireflies, We're headed to the beach… see you soon!

Where do you UN- wind ? I would love to hear about your summer sanctuary!  


Dee @ Red Dirt Ramblings said...

Oh,I so enjoyed this post. The beach cottage, the sand, the sun. Reading and relaxing. We went on vacation to the Outer Banks for a week this summer, and I read three books. Back home, I have chickens and a large garden. Tending it is where I unwind.~~Dee

Anonymous said...

That looks like the most wonderful place in the world to recharge your batteries.

Julia said...

If it weren't for grandbabies near by, I would come live at your beach! How lovely was this post! I feel refreshed just reading it. Since I can't just up and come, I will enjoy my little backyard with a cup of tea, a good book, and occationally close my eyes to here the sound of the ocean!

16 Sassy Street said...

Deborah Jean, what pretty and refreshing photos!!!! Love the beach scenes, especially! Almost everyday I am surprised at the pieces that are selling in my booth! Do your homework at some local antique malls and talk to the vendors as well as the owners. Make sure you ask for monthy sales amounts before you "bite the bullet." I did lots of homework and it FINALLY paid off :)

Unknown said...

It's so inviting...I could just feel the relaxation. And I happen to like the trim just as it is. It adds to the beach charm.

Thanks for linking up.

from Trash to Treasure Decorating

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