desert valentine

5 nights in the desert, the longest time I’ve ever spent at a single hotel. Soaking in the sun by the pool, trying to save it all up for the next few dreary months until spring here. Bedside grocery store carnations and stacks of magazines. Room service breakfast on the balcony, looking out over the palms & pretending we’re in Egypt circa 1905. (This book about the Carnarvon estate – aka Downton Abbey – certainly helped.) A confection of a handbag by Marni, made possible by the ridiculous outlet stores in the desert – I’m scared to use it until the winter salt and grime have subsided. My first trip to the Rose Bowl, & a tiny luncheon with lovely ladies – Becca, Alix, Mariela, Amber, & Lyn! EEE.

I’m not ready to start up my life back in Vermont yet, still reeling and confused, walking back into a house I now own. I keep feeling stunned, I own this, at the weirdest moments; staring up at the skylight, looking at the tin ceiling. It’s crazy. I know people buy houses every day, but it wasn’t even on the list of things to do right away. It didn’t feel possible. Here’s a secret: if you ever want me to do something, get me mad. This entire house-buying adventure was kicked off by a different rental house in Vermont we were interested in, but the landlords raised the price as more people replied to the ad. There was pacing & there was ranting. Furious, when Sean showed me the listing for this house and I saw it was for sale, I vowed NO MORE LANDLORDS.

& now, here we are. Back to work tomorrow, & then a weekend of home improvements. Welcome to our new life.


  1. I’m so glad you enjoyed that book! I just bought it for my mum and hadn’t heard anything much about it. That’s made my day.

  2. Your vacation looks so warm and relaxing! I long for a few days in the desert just about now. Seattle is particularly damp and chilly these days… I just ordered this same book last week! I can’t wait to delve into it. Best wishes with your new home!

    1. I actually had a moment lying in bed staring at them where I felt that carnations have been wronged through the years. They’re so sweet & they have tiny spiky green bits and really are very pretty when you look at them. I blame St. Patricks day and the green carnation trend for making them feel tacky!

  3. This is one pink post! Love it. Can’t believe you scored that bag, the leather looks ridiculously soft. Carnations are awesome little cheap pick me ups. I like to cut them and arrange them into a really tight dome shape, yes I read it on Martha Stewart once.

    1. It’s Valentine’s week, when else can you overload on pink!? I love the bag so much, I need to baby it, though. No carrying pens, and I want to get a couple little pouches to group things in so they don’t bang around.

  4. Lovely, lovely – what a perfect Valentine…
    Cozying up in a quiet moment in bed, reading
    a nice chunk of your magical posts is totally my
    vicarious vacation time! Reminds me I still have
    Marfa adventures to share – and also, carnations
    are my birth-flower! I always thought they were too
    common, but had a secret soft-spot (and still do) for
    their spikiness and spiciness. Miss you, kiss you.
    p.s. Can I eat your bag? It looks like ice cream.

  5. Im the same way. I got fed up and said THATS IT NO MORE NEIGHBORS. And now we have an offer in on a beautiful Victorian house. Crossing my fingers it goes through!

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