Happy June! Are you feeling summer yet? While kids here are still in school (some until almost the end of June because of the snow and ice winter we had!), we've had graduations and just enough summer weather to whet our appetite. There was a stretch of 3-4 days in the 80s which was SO wonderful.
But it's a rainy weekend and I look at the pool pictures in my Instagram feed and just have to sigh. That's so not Western Oregon and Washington, ha!
Some of you have been asking and yes, our house search continues with some highs and lows. Make sure you're getting the weekly newsletter if you'd like behind-the-scenes peeks- along with useful ideas, recipes, and links.
On to this week’s three things and links I think you’ll love! (As always, some of the links I provide are affiliate links and I receive a small percentage if you buy through them - at no cost to you. Thanks for your support.)
A new shrub discovery. My mom has this pretty shrub growing right outside the kitchen window and when it burst into bloom in May I was stumped - what was it? I hadn't ever seen anything like it that I knew of. My mom could only remember that it was expensive and a friend talked her into getting it. I tried a couple of plant ID apps, but neither worked.
So I posted a picture on Instagram and of course a number of people knew right what is was: Calycanthus, also known as Sweetshrub. It really is so pretty and is supposed to be deer resistant, though my mom said they nibbled at it when it was smaller. Ours is a good 8 feet tall in it's eastern-facing position, so on the tall end of plant description.
Do you grow Calycanthus? Is this more common in other areas? And if you're interested in growing this, too, you can buy a Proven Winners Calycanthus plant here.
A fun new novel featuring a lifestyle blogger. About a month ago I got a surprise email from Emilie Richards, a novelist with more than 70 books to her credit. Her newest book, The Swallow's Nest, features a lifestyle blogger and since she had used An Oregon Cottage and a few other blogs as inspiration would I be interested in reading an advanced copy?
Um, yes! It's not everyday you get asked that, right? I was completely honored. I finished it a week ago and while the blogging part obviously is the background to the story (the main character falls in love with a baby that was dropped on her doorstep and then has to fight for his custody), it was fun to see this job through someone else's eyes.
I have never read anything by Emilie before and I'm happy to say it was just a good story with no swearing, violence, sex, or cringe-worthy parts (if you know what I mean). I was a little disappointed that the description of the book gives away a major plot point that doesn't occur until halfway through, but otherwise I really recommend this as a fun summertime read! I will definitely be looking up some of her other releases. The official release date is June 13, but you can preorder it in Kindle, hardcover and softcover formats.
A book series I love…but a disappointing new series. Have you watched Anne with an E on Netflix yet? Oh dear, I had such high hopes for this series since I've loved the entire book series and of course the Megan Follows movies.
The first episode was okay, though I found out right away this is not for kids because of the flashbacks to abusive situations. Then the entire second episode is not from the books, but more importantly was boring and drawn out with all this drama with a capital D. Sigh. I skipped through most of it.
By the time I'd finished the third episode, I realized I had a knot in my stomach and was just scared for poor Anne. Sheesh. Where was our sweet story of a resilient and optimistic girl who wins over even her biggest critics? I found this article that perfectly summed my view. Boo on "dark, gritty reboots."
What are your thoughts?
Links To Check Out:
You won't believe the fake food you can use as a pesticide.
29 egg recipes for more than breakfast.
Tips to breakthrough a weight loss plateau.
Simple modern-to-vintage file cabinet makeover that gives me all the heart eyes.
Better than restaurant home fries with a garlicky coating.
Good to know online resources for gardening.
The perfect summer dish?
The secrets to long lasting cut hydrangeas.
Like these links? I'm always pinning these and lots more - follow me on Pinterest for more inspiration and ideas!
Disclosure: this post contains affiliate links and by clicking on them you help support AOC at no extra cost to you – thanks so much! Plus you can trust I'll only share what I love. (You can always read our entire disclosure page here.)