My blog looks a bit different today. I switched themes. I like to keep things fresh. So if you wondered, that’s what has changed.

Let me know if the font is too small for you to read.

Looking out the patio at my gardens

Charlie and Ivy are asleep now here on the couch with me. She’s on the bed she took over, and Charlie is on his new bed.

I thought I could keep Ivy off the bathroom vanity top if I kept the door closed. But her favorite place to take her “finds” is the bathtub.

So I just can’t take that away from her.

Ivy in the bathtub

I don’t know why, but she will drag something two feet long into the bathtub and then play with it.

Dining room looking out on patio

Most of the plants on my patio have about tuckered out.

When my son-in-law was sitting at the end of the table looking out over the patio Sunday at lunch, he commented on how pretty it was to sit there and see all the plants outside.

I told him he should have seen it when the plants were still producing blooms.

I have to say it was quite nice to have this bigger table where everyone had plenty of room. Now we can have more meals here at my apartment.

White cone flower

Orange cone flower

The cone flowers have bounced back after the horrid heat let up.

Many of the plants have already called it a season and are going dormant.

The big red blooms on the hibiscus that reminded me of Abi have been gone for awhile now. The leaves on it are turning gold.

The herbs keep going. But then herbs are sturdy little plants. The mint and lemon balm in the blue raised garden is very full and lush.

Blue raised garden

See the rabbit angel figurine sticking its head out of the mint? You can’t even really see the blue raised container. It is covered over.

Below is more lemon balm that mysteriously came up through the cement crack of the patio.

lemon balm growing in cement crack

The gold lantana has also perked up since the weather got cooler. It really brings in the butterflies.

Gold lantana

I love my big fenced patio. I noticed the woman moving in a bit at a time next door brought in a top to what looks to be a swing. So I guess she plans to use her patio.

You have to look at your outdoor space as being part of your living space. Because if you put seating out and turn it into more of a “room” you have basically extended your square footage.

The pet babies enjoy sitting at the patio doors looking out at birds and wildlife. And so do I.

Okay, I know you want to see the pet babies. Ivy has been pretty quiet thus far this morning. So no new escapades for me to tell you about.

Ivy on her cat tree

Ivy loves to eat. When she hears me in the kitchen opening the plastic container that holds her food she comes running.

Ivy with a curtain tie

Currently her two favorite things to play with is the red and white checked tie back and the pumpkin stem.

Charlie on the arm of the couch

I feed them at the same time twice per day. But Charlie, having only two teeth, can’t gobble food as fast as Ivy can.

In the late afternoon when I fix his beloved egg, I often have to hold Ivy after she’s already eaten her food in the bedroom or there isn’t much for him to eat.

And Charlie boy does love his egg!

Ivy on the arm of the couch

It’s so funny when Charlie is walking along and Ivy will shoot out like a rocket from wherever she’s been hiding and jump over him.

He seems to take it all in stride. As though there’s always been a cat doing crazy things and jumping over him as he walks.

I guess as long as she protects him from bugs, he doesn’t much care.

Who would have thought that a 12 year old dog and a 23 week old kitten would make such a good match? I’m so grateful for this.

Charlie on the couch

Oh, they are quite a pair, Ivy Lou and Charlie Ross.

I want to go out to Woodward park and Swan Lake and take photos. From what I can tell driving around town, not that many trees have changed colors. But maybe I’ll go take a look anyway.

Similar Posts


  1. I had missed a few days of reading so I spent some time catching up…. WOW! So much going on….. Yey for Ivy saving the day for Charlie!! I was very happy to hear about her determination to get that “intruder!” How exciting for Charlie! ! ?
    You getting a new neighbor AND attending the “chili” get together! New table and chairs for you and your family to share meals!! Your son-in-law ‘s comment about your patio was so nice….. and we all agree with him on that for sure!! I also just loved the photo of the patio with the lamp reflecting on the window!! I have seen people putting lamps and comfortable chairs on their front porches and patios for several years now. I watched a video tutorial where a lady bought a lamp from a thrift store and converted it into a “patio lamp” using one of those “solar” walkway lights!! I will do that one of these day!! Crazy clever of her!!to
    So happy to read all the news from your “Cozy and Happy Little Home!”
    Blessings to you, Charlie Ross, and Little Miss Ivy Lou ?

  2. I really love your patio, with all of your beautiful plants. Like you I am very much a loner and would love to have a patio to sit and read or just sit quietly. Also love how you always find the right thing for your small apartment. You really have a talent for decorating.

    So glad that Charlie and Ivy are doing so well together. Love seeing your pictures of them and the stories of Ivy’s antics. Both are so adorable.

    Wishing you a wonderful day
    Marilynn and Hayley

  3. That first photo is beautiful. I could look at that all day.
    What is the vine on the patio wall?

    Love that Ivy girl. What is there about some kitties and the bathtub? My Norwegian Forest cat loved to play there. In the middle of the night I would hear Him thumping around and think, “it’s Boo in his playpen again”.

  4. I love your new table and chairs. The view of your patio is just gorgeous even if the plants are tuckering out now. It must have been beautiful in full bloom.

  5. Hello. I do miss the days when you had more of a cozy looking banner or header or whatever you call the top of a blog — some patches of red, green, blue and yellow to draw in the reader. It doesn’t really seem to proclaim Cozy Little House, and it seems like a real waste of good space. I don’t want to sound so critical. I just remember when the top of the blog was full of cozy images and color and was so comforting and inviting!

  6. This font is even easier to read than in past days–thank you so much! Sure appreciate the gorgeous photos and cute furry kids’ stories, too.

  7. Brenda, I like the new look of the blog! You most definitely have a green thumb! All of your plants are just beautiful…so peaceful and pleasant to look at! And that Ivy…I think you could write a book on her antics…that is hilarious about her dragging things to the bathtub!! Love and hugs!

  8. The font is fine for me, Brenda.

    I am so taken by the beautiful portrait of Charlie. (the one where his tongue is not out!) He is so handsome and dignified-looking in that photo. I would frame it if it was mine.

    Your plants on your patio are really, truly lush and stunning even at this time of year. And, I agree that they provide a wonderful view from the new dining table. I wish I could see all of your plants in person when they are in full bloom. I planted some daffodil bulbs yesterday and some Snow in Summer in front of my new Heirloom Rose bush. I can’t wait to see them bloom next Spring. I have to find a really effective deer repellent as they come over my back fence in the back yard and eat anything that appeals to them! I actually love to see them when they visit, I just don’t want them to eat my tulips! If it weren’t prohibited I would feed them during the winter, but they say you shouldn’t. I don’t know why. I think they are beautiful but I guess they can be destructive, too. Or they are over-populated or something.

    Time for sleeping here in my neck of the woods. So, have a pleasant ending to your week. Hugs to you and pats to the four-leggeds.

  9. I had never had pineapple sage before you mentioned growing it. It is now blossoming and I realize the bloom looks a lot like salvia. Of course I Googled it and found out they are in the same family. Thank you for mentioning this herb, I am trying to attract hummingbirds to my garden. Your furbabies are the light of your life!

    1. Pineapple sage and lemon verbena are my very favorite herbs. That and the mints and lemon balm are always in my garden. Charlie chews on the pineapple sage leaves when he has an upset tummy and I read that that’s okay. And it smells so wonderful!

  10. Your patio is beautiful! We try to let our patio and backyard area be another room for us, too. However, my plants are not looking as green and perky as yours, which surprises me being here in the deep South. But the nights are getting colder and most plants are turning a gold or brown. Fall is funny; it was boiling hot until last week, and then BOOM! Cold weather and the plants finally change!

    I love the friendship that Ivy and Charlie have; so happy for all of you.

  11. New font size is great for me ~
    I love the first pic of your new dining set and patio; SO calm and serene!
    Our front lawn is now yellow from all the river birch leaves on it, my across-the-street neighbors bushes are scarlet and their lawn is a lovely shade of green as they have only evergreens in the front ~ makes for a lovely picture outside our front window ~
    Enjoy your babies!

  12. You have a lovely oasis on your patio. I like your new site..just a heads up though..I got 3 scam popups while reading this…not sure what was going of this congratulations you won an prize site.

  13. I envy your fenced in patio. It is the one thing I dislike about my duplex, not a good outdoor private space. Cats love enclosed places and so a bathtub fits that I guess. She really is so much fun to read about. We are getting a few leaves changing but I hope to take a walk in the park soon and take photos also.

  14. I had trouble with the font and I see my comment font is so small too so I hope it’s okay and no bad words come thru with spell checks! I appreciate you asked though and would like it a bit bigger. When I read quilting blogs if I can’t see the font well and there are too many ads making it hard for me to navigate through the post, I won’t bother going back to the blog again. Your pictures came through well for me.

  15. For my older eyes, the font is a bit small! I have to get really close to read.. and also when typing my comment, the font is VERY small! Just an FYI. Also.. I did so love before when you had a pretty header of a cozy house or cottage, or flowers or something.. I miss that. I have never seen a reply to any of my comments……. I assumed any reply would come to my email inbox, but maybe not? EEEEKKKK.. I may have missed t hem! When I reply to peoples’ comments on my blog, I wonder if they get them either. Things keep changing and hard to keep up with them! Glad Charlie and Ivy are getting along so well. Our kitties love our tub too… they don’t play in it as much now as they did when they were kittens, but now and then they’ll chase each other all over the house and end up in and out of the tub! So fun to watch them! Marilyn

    1. I have made the font size bigger in the blog post text as well as the comment text. I have threaded comments, so you should be able to read all the replies. I’ll have to research this some more I guess. I can see all the replies and replies to replies.

  16. Great pictures of Ivy & Charlie! I am so glad they are getting along so well. Makes your heart smile, doesn’t it?
    I have to say that your patio is just beautiful even this time of year. And–the bigger table is nice for a sit-down meal.
    I hope you have a great night, Brenda. xo Diana

  17. Do you cut your cone flowers back for the winter? I read you should leave them because the birds like the seeds but they don’t look very attractive all dried up! ha

  18. Your herbs are so full and lush on the patio Brenda! When you need some fresh herbs to cook with, it’s only a few steps away. I have yet to taste mint cuz it’s always gone in the supermarket, when I want it. Sigh.
    I think I need to plant some mint and I’ll be saving money too! Win! Win!
    Have a great day with your pet babies!

  19. Love , love love your patio, it is lush with the tree overhanging and your beautiful plants. I am so pleased that Charlie is okay with Ivy because you never know but it seems that he has really taken to her.

    The font is way to small for me right now but I go for my first appointment this weekend to see about getting my cataract removed. After that I should be fine.

  20. That lemon balm looks so pretty and healthy. Ivy and Charlie are just perfect roommates for one another; I’m so happy you got her for the two of you. I agree with your son-in-law, your patio is just beautiful. Enjoy the afternoon and the font size is fine for me. 🙂

    Carol and Molly

  21. Oh my goodness… What a perfectly gorgeous post…. Thank you for sharing your beautiful new dining set and ohhhhhh that patio….. Must be so very peaceful to be able to sit in your living / dining area and enjoy that view…. living in Florida .. I have lantana on my deck in planters… they can take the heat … and yes they do attract butterflies !!! Brenda… it truly is just perfect!!! (oh and yes the font is fine for me !!!)

  22. Your son in law was right….that is such a lovely view looking out onto your patio – that first photo is gorgeous!! Too bad you can’t bring the hibiscus in for the winter – it won’t survive out there, but I guess Ivy would destroy it inside. Maybe your daughter could take it home for the winter? What a little crackpot that Ivy is, I love hearing about her escapades!!

      1. Is your hibiscus the tropical type of hibiscus, or the hardy type of hibiscus? It may have said which on the hang tag when you bought it. I have two of the “hardy” not tropical type of hibiscus. One of my hardy hibiscus survived our very cold St. Louis winter like a champ, while planted in the ground and mulched well with a deep pile of leaves, and come spring was a lot bigger circumference plant than it had been in its first summer. It did so well that we bought another one this summer. I hope I didn’t just jinx them by bragging about them. Maybe if you can somehow insulate the pot yours is in with some sort of mulch, it will survive, if its not a tropical variety. My hardy hibiscus had blooms between the size of a dinner and desert plate. I hope to plant more of them next year. Their huge blooms were so amazing.
        I love seeing Charlie and Ivy together and it is so cute how Ivy thinks every little thing she can drag along with her is a big treasure. Ivy must be a born hunter, if there are no mice, (Heaven forbid), she’ll make do with a curtain tie back.

  23. I just love your new dining room set! From your pictures, your new arrangement of table and blue hutch seems to have just opened up the room and the view of your lovely patio. I too need a new table so all of my family can be seated at the table together. Will have to save for it though.

    1. I did a six month same as cash plan to get my dining table set. Or maybe it was 12 months. I’ve forgotten. The other table (that is Ivy’s now) was smaller. So I can’t view quite as much of the patio as I could. Not much different though.

    1. but just one thing…..I wish you had a quick, easy way to click back to your previous post….you very thoughtfully reply to many comments and I enjoy going back to see what you said to me! before, in Blogger, it was easy, this one requires me to click on “archives” – just a thought! – not to be a bossy pants or anything! 🙂

      1. I just added a new plug in that should show threaded comments. Let me know if you can’t see them please. I could always see the threaded comments, so I assumed everyone else could as well.

        1. OK – I’d like to try to clarify what I meant before! After I read a new post, I like to click back on the previous one to see if you replied to my comment. In Blogger, all I had to do is click “older posts” at the bottom. I could go back as many posts as I wanted to. With the new set up, I need to go to “archives” and click on a month and find the post from there. Not really a problem – but just not as obvious, making me wonder if you’re missing page views now…? And now I see you did add “archives” back so I’m good! By comment thread, I am guessing you mean we all get to see new comments after our own, along with your replies to everyone else. YES! I have always been able to do that. My concern has just been having a quick, easy, obvious way to click back to the previous post. Now, if your head is spinning, let me end by saying your set up is beautiful and your ads very polite and non-intrusive. I’d rather strain to read a smaller print than be blinded by flashing ads that obscure the print and make me feel like my computer needs to take a shower after a visit. To those sites, I NEVER go back! If they ask for a reason why on the “unsubscribe” page, I let ’em have it!
          Sorry for the lengthy manual here, Brenda, but I know you sincerely like input from us and act on what we say immediately. If I ever saw you in person, I’d run up and hug you like we’ve been old friends for years – that’s how you make all of us feel – welcomed and accepted! Thanks!

  24. All of your pictures are wonderful. But, I absolutely love the picture of your patio with the reflection of the lamp in it! I would sit in that spot and do my hand sewing all day long. You have done a beautiful job with your patio space.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *