Posts Tagged trees

This old ranch…

6 April 2011

I wanted to share some pictures of the magical ranch I live on.  We feel like we live in a time warp here.  Once you pull onto the property life seems to slow down, it is wonderful!

There are delightfully aged abandoned buildings scattered about.

I would love to restore this before it is too far gone…  It was built around 1915 used to be a stable for horses.

The old wood is so beautiful.  No mater how hard folks try you just can’t mimic the look of aged wood.

It has the most glorious rafters.

A tree has grown up right through the middle…  isn’t that wonderful?  If I had the money I would make this building into the most amazing home…  and I would definitely keep the tree.

Or I guess I should say trees…

Here you can see the top of the trees, they are rather huge!

All of the buildings have such beautiful doors.

There is a paddock adjoining the building with another tree going out of the side…

Looking down the front of the building towards another paddock.  Those are the foreman’s horses in the distance.

Another view of,  it is so magical especially in the setting sun.  Part of what is so lovely here is how peaceful everything is.  Just the sound of the ocean in the distance and the birds.  As the evening comes in the crickets start to sing.  Just beautiful!

My husband is doing some work nearby and we both feel like is it almost a sacrilege to start up the power tools.

However some “noise” suits the place wonderfully…

This is Tomas, our neighbor.

He has worked on the ranch for 30 plus years.

Can’t you just hear the music for the “Milagro Bean field Wars” playing softly in the distance?

We even have old Amorante’s pig living down at the end of the street…

If you haven’t seen the movie I can’t recommend it enough!  Directed by Robert Redford back in the 90’s it is about a small magical New Mexico village and how they adjust with the modern era.  Absolutely delightful!

Gosh I love this little “Milagro” ranch…

Blessings!

A Magical “Green” Woodland Party…

4 November 2010

OK all of my blog friends…  get ready for a mega-super long faerie packed post.

Remember a while back when I said I was working on a fund raiser for the Community Environmental Counsel that was to be a faerie themed event?  Well I finally got the pictures back…

I feel like a proud parent that is dying to show off pictures of her children…  all 100 pictures.  So consider yourself warned…

It was held in an outdoor large rotunda of the Fess Parker’s Double Tree resort.  We filled this huge space with approximately 250 trees, 400 shrubs and divided it into two spaces, one for cocktails and the other for dinner and dancing.  You are looking at the diner area in the front with the stage on the left and the cocktail area to the back on the right, behind the curtain.

The theme was an enchanted woodland forest.  As they are a non-profit that consults on local environmental issues they wanted a green event.  Well as you can probably guess green means a bit more to me that the average person.

I wanted to remind people of our heritage, of the myths and legends that surround the forests.   Of a time when we were intrinsically tied to nature.  When our daily lives were so mixed with nature and it’s folk lore that there was no dividing line.  Now because of the marvelous wonders of technology and science many of us live a life that is very removed from the rhythms of Mother Nature.  Our Earth is beautiful, and so magical.  To walk in the forrest or on the beach or any place where the magisty of Mother Nature is felt is to heal your heart, calm your mind, and remember your part in the big picture.  I get so frustrated at how political environmental issues have polarized us…  in large part because of the crazies on BOTH sides.  To me it is just good manners to care for this precious Earth.  My Mom taught me to not take more than I need and say please and thank you.  To strive to live a healthy earth friendly life is to do the same.   OK I am done preaching…  thank you for listening.  Anyway…

Some of the tables had wild fantastical trees complete with feathers, flowers, butterflies, bugs and hanging candles…

And some of the tables had low arrangements which were an eclectic mix of fun items like birdcages (with the doors tied open…  it is a thing I have against caging flying creatures) filled with butterflies (fake), lanterns, plants, garden statuary, cloches, funky old bottles with feathers, birds nests, and all manor of magical woodsy beauties.

Our Faerie court…

(click on the picture for a larger size)

We had a Faerie Birch Queen who rode in on a Unicorn and would you believe it…  I do not have one picture!!!!!  Maybe it is the magical nature of the Unicorn that does not allow for photos…  However here is our lovely Queen

She sat on her Birch throne up above the rotunda and with her ladies in waiting reigned over her forrest that evening.

Along with the Queen we had Satyrs.  Does this picture make you giggle or what?…

There were lots of beautiful details…

And some just fun silly details…

Kenny Loggins played for us…

The deserts were adorable…

I think everyone had a fun time and came away thinking more about our beautiful Earth.  Even though a party of this size does have an impact on Nature no matter how you slice it.  Everyone did their best to keep it to a minimum.  The trees and statuary were loaned to us from three wonderful people…  , Katie Oriely Rogers Landscape Architect, Eye of the Day Garden statuary and Cal Western Landscape.  Everything went on to their respective permanent homes in peoples yards.  These people were brought in by the Event Coordinator Merryl Brown. She is wonderful at connecting all the right people together.  This event would not have been possible without the trees plants and statuary.  Imaging a forrest without trees!  She kept the big picture in mind and got anything that I might need… usually donated!  Most of her events have a huge on being green.  The food was locally organically grown, the decor (me) was mostly plants and props (which I use over and over) with a few locally grown flowers.  The costumes I made were mostly of recycled items from thrift stores.  The party supplies such as dishes, tables, chairs, etc were all rented and used again.  Fewer dishes were used (such as no bread plates and limited amounts of glass wear) so the water usage in clean up was reduced.  And I composted the remains of the flowers on the ranch that my husband and I live on.  Not too bad for such a decadent party!  Hope you enjoyed all of it!!


Add a bit of faerie dust to your wedding

31 March 2010
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I had the great fortune to indulge in a faerie dream that was swimming around in my imagination and create a beautiful and fastastical faerie and elf wedding.  I wallowed in making wings and costumes, and setting a beautiful stage on the magical ranch my husband and I live on.  I went a little crazy with it and the results have been published I am happy to say in Faerie Magazine  (summer 09) and is currently in Santa Barbara Magazine and is coming out in Elle mag in China in May as well as on numerous bolgs.  The most excellent photographer Elizabeth Messina captured the magic on film beautifully.  This was my faerie bride and groom and their magical owl,

To see the whole wedding go to the faerie gallery on my web site.

I know that most people would not go to quite these lengths in a muggle (non-magic folks) wedding so I have taken some of the faerie pictures and suggested what you could incorporate from them in your wedding,

Hold the ceremony outside at the base of an ancient tree.  Possibly add a garland around the trunk or hang a chandeliere from one of the branches.  You could easily purchase an old funky chandeliere from a thrift store and then cover it with moss or bark.  The day of the wedding add fresh greenery like Ferns and Ivy.  You can hang ribbons from the branches and then pin wishes to the ribbons or tie flowers to the end of the ribbons.  You could hang a big beautiful flowering basket from the branches off to one side of where you will be standing.  Keep in mind what the camera sees and make sure that nothing looks like it is coming out of your head in the photos.   You could place around the base of the tree trailing potted plants and flowers like Ferns, Petunias or Impatients for added lushness and color.  Hanging colorful lanterns looks very festive even if the ceremony is in the day time.

Bring natural elements into the ceremony such as having the rings brought forth on a moss pillow or on a lovely piece of bark.  Nestling rings in large shells or birds nests look beautiful as well.  Set a feasting table outside in the middle of a field/park/forest/glade/orchard/wherever natural.  Hang lanterns all around for twinkling light as the evenings draws near.  Use any type of lanterns or even a hodg podg of different styles.  If cold evenings are a factor you can rent mushroom heaters from a party rental company to scatter about or have some outdoor fire pits for a wonderful effect as well as heat.

Bring natural elements to your table such as plants (both green and flowering), cover any plastic pots with moss and tuck in lots of goodies like fruit, mushrooms, feathers, bark, branches, driftwood, shells, etc.  You can also add in sparlkey elements like beaded bits, crystals, personal momentos, pictures,  and lots of pretty glass containers for candles.

Make chargers for the plates out of feathers, moss, large green leaves or bark or other natural elements.  Add a bit of sparkle with gliter or colorful glass beads.

Set you cake outside near a tree or other beautiful vista.  Go a bit crazy with a lushious display of gorgeous candies, fruit and flowers.  It becomes a lovely focal point throughout the evening as well as makes for beautiful pictures.

I also created another wedding for a photo shoot with a magical/mid-summer-nights-dream feeling.   Christine Arnold took the following great pictures.  Most of what I created muggles could do.  I used lots of plants and natural material like tree branches and trunks, moss, mushrooms and bark.  I also used lots of outdoorsy items like garden figurines, old fashioned hurricane lamps, and mixed them with more elegant pieces like candelabras, Indian saris, beautiful goblets, and absolutely loads of candles and twinkle lights.  I really think almost anything can look beautiful in candle light and twinkle lights come as close to candle light as any electric light available.

Use large leafs as chargers, have short sections of tree trunks as risors.  Tuck in bits like pine cones and fun fruit and vegiatbles.

Make a green wrap or head wreath for some of the statues in the garden.  They should be decked out for the festivities too!

Use lots of candle elements like lanterns and pretty glasses with votives in them.

Even bottles with tall grasses in them look cool.  Go and trim your yard and tuck in the bits of branches, ferns, and succulents on the table.

Use lots of layers of mismatched fabrics for great texture.  Stay within a color story of 2 or 3 colors so it doesn’t get too messy and then use lots of variations of those colors.  Rent a simple inexpensive base linen for all the tables in the same color and then layer on lots of other fabrics.  I also like to include a natural fabric like burlap or gauze to reiterate the outdoor feeling.

Use lots of lanterns, it doesn’t matter if they match.  One way to keep things from looking too eclectic is to keep each table with like items on it.  So have one table with hurricane lanterns and then another table with more exotic lanterns.  Do not mix the two different styles on the same table.

Here I have used a vintage Indian sari that had wonderful gold thread woven throughout.  The colors for this event were browns and greens.

Here I use my own green sequened shawl over a long strip of brown velvet which was layed over the base brown linen.  I also swirled around the candle holders more fabric.

Hanging all over were large tree branches with the leaves still on them and curtains of twigs with Spanish Moss all interwoven with lots of twinkle lights.  Wrapped on several of the beams was dried Honeysuckle vine, again mixed with twinkle lights.

I also created a mini lounge with tree trunks with cushions on them and a brass table again on a small tree trunk. On the table were lots of river rocks and moss which would also look good on the dinning tables.

Just remember to bring outside items in and add a bit of sparkle.  It is the combination of rustic or natural elements with sophisticated glamour that is so alluring and beautiful.