Friday, April 19, 2013

Cottage Love

My favorite vacations for as long as I can remember have always been in cottages in lakeside communities.  Early on my parents would rent cottages in different states and on different lakes and often we would rent the same cottage year after year.  Growing up in the city of Chicago I so looked forward to these escapes to the country to enjoy the lakes and all that nature had to offer.  Leaving the cement and asphalt of the city behind to be welcomed by gravel roads and grassy paths leading to the water’s edge was so exciting to me.  Running around barefoot with sand between my toes and being in a bathing suit all day was as good as it could get for me.  I can still smell the stick matches that my dad would use to start the charcoal grill in the evening and to this day I can’t be at a gas station without the smell of gasoline bringing me back to the memories of the boats on the lakes.  

We were lucky enough to have our own family cottage some years later and this was when the real passion began.  It was a lovely old home.   A three bedroom white sided cottage with a screened in front porch and window boxes filled with flowers. Our cottage address was 913 Grandview Drive and the view just happened to be quite grand – it was of the whole lake and a pretty park leading to the beach - which was only steps from our front yard.

I can remember being only 12 years old and decorating each and every room of the cottage over and over in my head – and then visually re-decorating each summer as my taste changed and matured.  Of course nobody was taking decorating advice from a little girl and as much as everyone loved the old house I don’t think they were as passionate about it as I was. To my family, the old cottage represented an escape from the fussiness of everyday life and was furnished and decorated casually and practically with old family furniture for the easygoing lifestyle at the lake.  To me it was the most beautiful house, something right out of a Pottery Barn catalog back before I even knew what Pottery Barn was. 

The kitchen was white with open shelving cabinets and vintage cup pulls on the drawers.  The cottage had the original hardwood floors throughout and on the screened porch, pale gray painted wood plank floors right out of a Scandinavian dream.  The porch was filled with real white Adirondack furniture that came with the home (and unfortunately was sold with the home many years later) and a cushioned chaise lounge with a black and white ticking striped cushion that was as thick and sturdy as a mattress.   This served as my bed for as many summer nights as my parents would allow.  I will never forget the white painted brick fireplace in the little living room that even as a kid I knew was just begging for an old framed seascape to be placed on the mantle.   

My passion for cottages and waterfront living began here at 913 Grandview Drive and this house will forever have a special place in my heart.

No comments:

Post a Comment

I would love to hear your thoughts:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...