Monday, July 2, 2012

Just For July...A List and A Giveaway

Just For July... A List and A Giveaway!
Here in the South, we never know what to make of January. 
 We might awaken to a balmy day worthy of Springtime, or an ice storm of historic proportion.  It is just as likely that snow will cover our rooftops by noon as it is that a warm sun will tease the jonquil bulbs up from their mossy slumber.  
But July is a month we can count on. 
 Possessing neither the volatility of March nor the mystery of October,
 July steps woodenly along, one sweltering day at a time, till her thirty-one day
tenure is done.  The most guileless of months, July is blessed with no magic save fireflies and honeybees and her one concession to theatricality, the thunderstorm, never arrives unannounced - we can see those coming for miles.  
 Yes, she’s predictable and her repertoire wearing, but yes, we do love her still.
   For in her limited box of tricks sits a power few other months can accurately claim. 
 July can force us to relax. 
 When her humidity hangs in the air like glue and her heat can no longer be borne,
 July will command us to sit.  On porches, in gardens, in beach sand or clover - 
she shoves glasses of lemonade in our hot little hands and pushes us down, down, down. 
 We sigh, we close our eyes. 
 We kick off our shoes.  
And slowly we sense the icy weight of every other month melt 
in the rays of her sun, our shoulders getting lighter and lighter with each 
drop of stress that splatters on the ground around us.  
It is July. 
 And we are at ease. 
For July, a new list and a fabulous giveaway.
Don’t forget to leave a comment as your entry!

1. Beach House Ships
Inside every beach house that lives in my dreams - 
on rocky coasts or palm covered shorelines -
 there sits, on a long table by an open window, a ship. 
Handmade and incredibly detailed, this one is a wonder. 
 I think it would be most at home in a cottage in Whitby.
Find it HERE 

2. Beach Towel
My friends tease me when I go to the beach.
Do you only go out at night?”, they laugh, referring to the lightness of my skin.
Yes, well.... at night, at dusk, in early morning light.  
Laugh if you will.
But still, I need a beach towel when I do venture out.
And I adore this one.
Find it HERE.

3. Pink Lemonade Bars
I mean, really.
Are these perfect for summer, or what?
Find the recipe HERE.

4.  Itsy-Bitsy Knitting
With less than six months till Christmas (yes, really), I am already knitting my presents.
  While knitting is a passion of mine, this lady puts me in the shade.
I am totally gobsmacked at her talent. 
Just watch THIS and see what I mean.

5. Lady Mary Scarf
Love Lady Mary.
Love the colours of this scarf.
Imagine a dress of the palest pink, almost the colour of dawn.
And this scarf.
Perhaps it will tide me over till the third season of Downton.
Find it HERE

6. Nora Ephron
Few people can make the truth funny.
Nora Ephron could.
She was never mean, she was always in love with life.
Goodness, how I’ll miss her.

“I look out the window and I see the lights and the skyline and the people on the street rushing around looking for action, love, and the world's greatest chocolate chip cookie, and my heart does a little dance.”
Nora Ephron

7. Paper Lanterns
In the oldest neighbourhood in the oldest part of my city there is 
a beautifully restored Victorian house that I love to pass by at nighttime.  
Hanging from the ceiling of the wrap-around porch, like moons orbiting the windows,
 are large, colourful paper lanterns. 
 In summer, yellow and pink ones sway in the starlight,
 magically changing over to copper and gold
 when the first autumn breezes blow through. 
 In December, iced reds and greens are reflected in the frosted ground. 
The effect is utterly bewitching and it speaks to the delightful whimsy
 of those who live within the old house.  
It’s no secret that I adore chinese lanterns.  Nothing makes a summer dinner party more special than paper lanterns swaying in the trees outside.  Few sights are more enchanting.  So it was with amazement that I read about the recent celebration of the summer solstice that took place in Poland.  People gathered to launch over 17,000 paper lanterns up into the night sky in a staggeringly beautiful display.
Seems they do this every year.  
HERE'S a film of last year’s solstice..
Want some sky lanterns of your own?
Find them HERE.

8. Another Summer Book
Though Gillian Flynn is an excellent writer, and her new novel, Gone Girl, is shaping up to be one of THE books for summer, I’m not sure I’d want to sit next to her at a dinner party.  To be elbow to elbow with the person capable of dreaming up the diabolical happenings in this mystery just might give me the willies.  Gone Girl is a novel that keeps you guessing and one whose characters always manage to go farther that expected.  It grabs your attention from paragraph one and doesn’t let go till the end.  Just don’t you dare read ahead!  And one word of warning, Gone Girl has some fairly rough language, which is probably understandable given the situations in which these characters find themselves.  But if that sort of thing bothers you, I thought I’d let you know.
Find it HERE.

9. Matt and His Videos
See, there is this chap named Matt.  
Matt travels the globe dancing a rather goofy dance. 
 He gets others to dance along with him and he videos these dances. 
 The resulting videos make me cry.
Matt has just released his latest.  And I cried again.
Each one makes me feel so hopeful.
  Each one shows us humanity outside of politics and polarization. 
 I could go on and on... but just go watch them for yourself.
And if you cry, you’re not alone.
2008 is my favourite.
See them all HERE.

10. A Shopping Coupon from Novica
Yes, I do love this company.  I love their artful products.  
And I love that with each product I order,
 I receive a personal note from the artist who created it.
  And I love it that those artists are paid fairly for their beautiful work.
While I am addicted to their shawls, (I just purchased the one above in turquoise and black) you may prefer something else.  My shawl came from the Andes.  
Find one for yourself HERE.   
Or perhaps you'd be interested in silver cufflinks, silver floral bracelets, leather belts, or Alpaca sweaters for men all the way from Peru.
The generous people at Novica have once again provided readers of my blog with the opportunity to win a discount coupon worth $50 to use on whatever they wish. 
Snag something for this summer, or something for fall.
Go shopping HERE.
  To enter, just leave a comment on this post. 
For a second entry, become a follower of this blog if you are not already.  
Edward and I will draw the winning comment at midnight on July 4th! 
Good Luck to All!

Painting at top by Alain Bazard

Congratulations to Sarah S!  
She's the winner!!


  1. I do love shawls... and those from Novica are gorgeous! Nora Ephron will be sorely missed in the romantic comedy world.

  2. Beautiful shawl! Perfect for just about anything, except hot sultry July evenings!

  3. Hello Pamela

    How generous of Novika and their product is so beautiful.

    I loved Matt's video and the unique dancers from all corner of the Globe.
    We continue to wish and pray for peace.

    I take it you like thunderstorms (I am petrified of them!).

    Have a glorious weekend


    R.I.P Nora Ephron, I will miss her

  4. I love the idea of paper lanterns on the porch! or in the garden at night.

    I absolutely love Matt and his dance all over the world :)

    RIP Nora Ephron, I loved her.

  5. I like your description of July! it is like that everyday of the year here.....

    Please count me in for this giveaway.

    I follow you on GFC

  6. Many lovely things in your post, Pamela, but I am so sorry to hear of the death of Nora Ephron.


  8. Pamela I think Novica's handmade wares are so wonderful. Such a gorgeous variety! Thank you for the opportunity.
    Your scarf is lovely.

    Art by Karena

  9. Oh and Matt's videos are amazing!!


  10. I'm a July 1st baby and after the rain this morning and the videos of Matt, I feel as if I have already been given my birthday gifts. Then I took a peek at NOVICA and I have to admit, I wouldn't mind one more.

  11. All the links were interesting, thank you.
    Edward rides Inside is a great picture - what sort of car is it he is driving?

  12. My blog aim is learn more English, it has been difficult to me to understand your description of july but I think I have the main idea and I love the first picture. Who is the painter??? I Live in andalucia and the weather is more or less the same you describe in July, I like your blog thanks a lot, please if you have a few minutes correct My mistakes

  13. July in the south is sultry, those beautiful shawls are essential to ward off an air-conditioning freeze!
    As a knitter, I was amazed at the miniature knitting!It was fun to read how she visualizes the world in miniatures. Sailing into Bermuda, I felt as though I was entering an enchanted fairyland... the pastel homes with the white cake icing roofs sprinkled among the hills overlooking the pink sand and turquoise seas...
    I love your blog and look forward to each new entry.
    Stay cool!

  14. I always treasure your blog, it's such a treat when new posts arrive--I really take my time here. *~*~enjoy July~*~*

  15. I love your July musings.. It is certainly the month to find less to do and to enjoy those precious things all the more.
    Thanks for the links..Matt is marvelous!
    The knitting is amazing.
    Cheers to July!

  16. always love the thought you put into your lists and July is no exception. We need some rain desperately, send some if you have any extra!

  17. as always with every post of yours but especially with your list posts... every one of my senses is engaged!
    i have never read a better description of july than stepping woodenly on until her tenure is done!
    yes. i cried all thru matt's video!
    people are the same everywhere. basically we all just want happiness and peace and a good world for our children.
    maybe matt could teach the politicians a thing or two!
    tammy j

  18. Wish we could rely on July being a good month weather-wise here Pamela. At the moment rain is forecast for the whole of the first week.
    How I love the look of those lemonade bars.

  19. The video of Matt is fantastic! I can't wait to show my husband. Thanks for the link.

  20. Love the scarf and the shawl. Matt is so wonderful..what a wonderful way to spend his life..dancing!

  21. I love shwals and specially if they come from Los Andes.
    Lovely post.

  22. Advanced Style is one of my favorite blogs and I have 3 copies sitting waiting as gifts for friends. Love love love it. I am farther along in lifes journey than you but I've loved every stop along the way.. Change gives you something new to learn and you just keep gaining more knowledge.
    Just relax and enjoy the trip.

  23. Here in Az a shawl actually comes in handy during July because so many public places have very cool to cold a/c. Lovely when you first step inside from 110, but chilly after a while.

    Am going to check out that book, and where have I been, I had never heard of Matt or seen any of his fun videos! He really is an inspiration.

  24. Love Matt and his videos! Thanks for the giveaway - the shawls are gorgeous.

  25. You do make me homesick for the South (though you probably don't count Oklahoma or Utah as southern - they have the weather). It is warmer here in the NE of England, but nothing like I know summer. Still, I'm grateful to be done with long underwear and wool sweaters, occasionally. Love the picture at the beginning and your description of July.

  26. Dear Pamela, I love your take on July, I feel so similar, let the heat wash over me and rest, read, cool down, relax!
    Your list is equally enticing. Wonderful!
    Please include me in your give away! What pretty things they have. I love these shawls!
    Happy summer day to you all!

  27. such an apropro description of july...loved every word

  28. I practically live on our front porch in the summer! Absolutely nothing better than settling in on the porch swing with a good book and a glass of iced tea. I am also learning how to knit, so now I have another lovely front porch pastime. Can't wait to check out the knitting link in your blog post. I'm sure it will amaze and inspire me! Sign me up for a beautiful shawl or something equally beautiful!

  29. How do I love your lists... Best wishes from the North of Spain, where we can't read in the garden yet... (It's sooo cold!)

  30. I just discovered your blog when I google my new car, which is also a light green Fiat! This post was wonderful, and I loved all the links. Your writing is very good.

  31. What a beautifully written explanation of a Southern July! Love the thunderstorm bit, too. Thanks!

  32. I sent the pink lemonade recipe to my sister who frequently entertains her 4 grandchildren - they will love it!
    The shawl is lovely; I also looked at bags (a friend, when she first entered my home, declared me a "bag lady!").
    We who have been so dry here in SE MO currently are having RAIN! YIPPEE!

  33. Hello Pamela!
    I really like that beach towel. It brings you properly on the mood of going for a swim with or without good weather.
    Thank you for the link.

  34. I spent my teenage years watching Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks fall in love over and over again in Sleepless in Seattle and You've Got Mail. Nora Ephron was just the best. She knew love. And she knew how to show it and explain it and make it seem wonderful. RIP.

    Was also a fan of the July poem at the beginning. In the Midwest, humidity is the name of the game. Definitely can always rely on July to bring that.

  35. Love that you can gather Mtt, Norah, and knitting in the same list!

  36. Hello Pamela

    As always--I love your Summer list. I will check on the book--sounds to be a good read.

    Tracy :-)

  37. Pamela,
    What an apt description of July! I love those pink lemonade bars and the scarf is wonderful.
    I'm now an official follower although I rarely miss reading your wonderful posts.
    Enjoy your 4th of July.
    I hope to win. :-)

  38. Loved the quote from Ephron. Your lists are magical.

  39. The Lady Mary scarf and the quote from Nora Ephron, just lovely. Love your list and your description of July. It is indeed a long month. Thanks for all the great items here, I will be clicking onto all of them!

  40. Excellent list, Pamela! I love so much on it. I love Nora Ephron, I love beach house ships, I LOVE Matt! I love knitting and shawls, and paper lanterns, and Lady Mary, *sigh*
    Thanks for sharing such deliciousness.

    And yes, I love July. :-)

  41. A marvellous list Pamela... I always love your book recommendations... thank you... xv

  42. I say it again and again Pamela...I love your lists! So many special things, glimpses of what's true and real. You got me on the scarf.. I picked up a vintage one the other day, from far away lands...we will have to wear them together one day! Happy 4th! Jeanne xx

  43. You've started your knitting already?? I'm still busy knitting for a pregnant friend - doubt I'd ever catch up in time for Christmas...
    Lovely post :-)

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