life in black and white…at life’s patina

Once upon a time in 2012 in the summer I was asked to photograph beautiful Chester County properties for a historic house tour. The Tredyffrin Historic Preservation Trust’s Annual Historic House Tour.

On this day, for the first time I saw Willowbrook Farm, which most of you know as Life’s Patina. At this point in 2012, the barn where so many go to enjoy special events and charity shopping days was being restored. I had not even met Meg Veno yet.

I fell in love with this farm on that day many years ago.

The restoration and adaptive reuse of the barn and the restoration of the property is an amazing thing to behold. It’s just so beautiful.

The care, the love, the attention to detail. And I have loved all of my many subsequent visits ever since.

Meg is inspirational to me. She is endlessly creative and has an incredible eye. She is also one of the kindest people I have ever met.

I was going through old photos and came across these and thought I would share them.

Life’s Patina is also expanding. They are restoring and renovating the Jenny Lind House in Historic Yellow Springs Village.

Now Yellow Springs is one of my very favorite places and has been since I was much younger. I used to come to Yellow Springs with my parents. My father loved the village and we used to come for the art show and sale and the antiques show they used to host (which I always thought was fabulous by the way.)

I took these next two photos of the Jenny Lind House last May 2019. I was in the village for the Herb Society Plant Sale. It’s so wonderful to see the house come back to life!

Anyway, enjoy the photos and celebrate those who chose to restore and renovate and find an adaptive reuse for old structures. We need more of that around here!

Make sure you check out Life’s Patina on their website and Facebook page. They often have terrific events. And the bonus is you also get to see a property that’s a slice of heaven in Chester County!

more endings and beginnings

The other day I wrote a post called “whisper down the lane“. It wasn’t about me personally, it was more like life observations.

And yesterday, literally yesterday, a very dear friend told me something I did not want to hear, but had to. Someone else I considered a friend that I would like to say I was a good friend to and happy to know even when I did not agree with some of their behavior, had apparently had quite a bit to say about me that was quite unpleasant.

“They are not your friend”

You never want to hear that. Ever.

At the end of the day, it wasn’t the question of what was said, but that anything was said. Women always spill he proverbial tea. It’s the whole concept of a lack of loyalty to someone who was a decent friend, helped you out with some stuff here and there, and was someone who listened to you over the years when you needed someone to talk to…and who always kept what you said to myself. And in spite of what has transpired, I will continue to keep what was discussed to myself because that is what an actual friend does.

Women are bitchy. No other way to describe it. And when we should be supportive, truly supportive of one and other, we are instead tearing each other down. Living in the land of women needs constant translation and is like a field of land mines.

I am not perfect. I don’t pretend to be. But don’t ask me for an honest opinion on something and then kind of flip out on me when I tell you probably what you didn’t want to hear me say.

That was a year ago give or take with this person, but I just went on about my life afterwards. Why wouldn’t I? They asked me for my opinion after they asked me to listen to what was going on, I responded, they didn’t like it, and I put it out of my head. Not my monkeys, not my circus. Realistically, I figured things were maybe fading at that point. Which I also put out of my head probably subconsciously because I liked this person. The whole theory of reason, season, and lifetime where people in your life are concerned once again. It bothered me a little, but I figured whatever would happen would eventually happen.

Sadly, what happened is this. The whiff of friend betrayal and passive aggressive nastiness is slightly unsavory and unwarranted. And it’s mingled with a good dose of disappointment in a person that I initially thought was better than this, or at least more intelligent than this.

Sometimes people like to climb over others on that mythical race to the “top”. I always find that sad. I don’t judge my friends by their designer handbags and shoes or the size of their house or the make of their car or what they can do for me. It’s do I like them? Do I think they are good people? Do I enjoy having a conversation with them or hanging out with them? Do they pay it forward in this world? Are they interesting?

And the thing about “society” in any area of the country or world is you really do have to be invited in. If you are hungry about being accepted, or should I be kinder and say “motivated to be accepted”, careful on your climb. Why? Because this kind of behavior is what people remember. And eventually the fall can be hard and really hurt.

A dog that brings and carries the bone is kind of human nature but I find increasingly that people take issue with those who cannot display an iota of loyalty. Or kindness. Especially when they have been shown it. Again, not perfect, but I don’t betray friends or those who have shown me kindness. Essentially the Golden Rule or “do unto others as you would have them do unto you” (Matt. 7:12)

So could I be miserable back? Sure. But why? When women do this to other women, generally speaking, they sadly already have enough issues or insecurities of their own. So I wish them well as I bid our friendship adieu. I am seeking to take the high road, so here’s hoping they find other things to talk about, or learn not to do this to others in general.

Humans are unnecessarily unkind to one and other so often . I hope this person got what she needed by putting me down. I hope they find what they need in life. I appreciate the time they were in my life except for this.

Tiens. Life goes on.