Monday, May 21, 2012

Summer Delights...

I am so happy to report that all is green, lush , and beautiful in our 
little corner of the world....
The fragrance of the blooming olive trees is indescribably delicious, 
and watching the trees, animals, flowers come out of their slumber, and into the glory of warm, sunny days is indeed a miracle...

I would love to share with you just a few of our family's "favorite things" 
of a Minnesota summer....

Farmer's markets! Fresh, local produce...such a treat for us...

Which inevitably leads to yummy salads....
this one is a favorite

Flowers...and Duluth
this photo was taken on the North Shore...such a  gorgeous place.
You can read more about Duluth here...a post from last year.

Water! Lakes, rivers, streams...all ice free...hooray!
(My joys are simple...ha)




The wonderful "living history" museum of Murphy's Landing...

This is from their website:
"This 88-acre living history museum depicts life in the Lower Minnesota River Valley from the 1840s–1890s with authentic 19th-century buildings, demonstrations and a scenic river trail and overlook."
 One of the costumed guides....
Great fun for history buffs and kids (of all ages)


Our fantastic Renaissance Festival...
(I think she's giving this darling dragon a dental checkup?!)


Curiosities at the annual State of the largest in the U.S....
(I call him Peace Bear)

and to continue with the theme...

sweet bunnies...
(a dear friend referred to this one as The Velveteen Rabbit)

I love the Fina Arts is a very creative, life-size sculpture dressed
entirely in those complementary mailing labels....

I do love art in all forms...
Luckily, the Twin Cities is a cultural gem (no, really)...
My favorite museum is the Minneapolis Institute of Arts...
over 80,000 pieces in its possession.
I love it in the summertime...the light is brighter....

A favorite still life by Severin Roesen
(this one's for Elizabeth!)

A beautiful Childe Hassam...


And a magical fairy sculpture made mostly of fresh flowers...she was on display
as part of their annual "Art In Bloom" event....

Our last stop today is at the iconic Sculpture Garden in Minneapolis....
are you familiar with this particular sculpture?

It is entitled "Spoonbridge and Cherry" by Claes Oldenburg...
It's a bit hard to see, but the top of the stem emits a fine mist...this is indeed a fountain.
I have to mention that Mr. Oldenburg's wife, Coosje van Bruggen collaborated on this piece.
Isn't it cool?


Thank you so much, dear friends, for joining me on a tour of some of my Minnesota summer favorites!
Now please tell me, what are your warm-weather, lazy-day joys?

A fabulous week to you all...


  1. Hello Irina:
    We have so loved reading this post! We know so very little about Minnesota and you have really whetted our appetites to know more and, who knows,perhaps to visit and see for ourselves one day.

    Your choices are so wonderfully eclectic and individual.Clearly, you are a lover of the Arts but also have a tender appreciation of the beauty of Nature in all its facets. It is uncanny that so many of the things you have chosen as your favourites have enormous appeal for us too. We are certain that we should love to explore all these things with you in person!

  2. Ohhhhh first of all, your new header is ABSOLUTELY GORGEOUS!

    The Velveteen Rabbit is simply sweet as pie....
    Each and every photo here is dear to my heart for you know that I am just on the other side of the bridge my dearest.
    The creek, the lakes, all of it is SO CLOSE to my soul for Minnesota has become my HOME.

    LOVELY TOUR MY FRIEND! Oh how I am loving this TOUR TIME !!!! BIG HUGS! Anita

  3. What a dreamy collection of images! You are brilliant at sourcing and giving credit. I'm hooked! Thanks again for visiting Zendoll Workshop. Cheers.

  4. oh my fun! Minnesota should give you a commission!!

  5. Oh how fun. You're the perfect tour guide, my friend. :) I take joy in the simple things too.
    Your salad looks scrumptious, and I love the mailing label sculpture. How fun it would be to actually walk through some of these places together.
    My warm weather, lazy day joys are anything air-conditioned because I live in Florida. ;) But I also love to grab a tall iced smoothie and head to the beach. Actually, a smoothie instantly transports me there. Strawberry banana is my favorite. Also LOVE frozen coconut bars. Oh geez, see what you've done? Now I must have one. ;)
    Thank you for the daydreaming. You know I'm always up for that.

  6. By the way, I love your new header.

  7. Awh, my page buttons. Now you're making me cry. Sigh...more hugs and kisses for you.

  8. Oh, my dear Irina, I don't know haw I've almost skipped this wonderful tour around Minnesota?! When I visit your area only you and nobody else will be my tour guide:) ...and who says you can't take wonderful shots???
    Enjoy the splendid season!

  9. Irina, these photos are so beautiful! The photos of the water, with the sun spots and sun rays, are breath taking. What wonderful art. I love the spoon bridge with cherry. So clever. Hope you have a wonderful holiday weekend. laurie

  10. Dear Irina...I have thoroughly enjoyed looking around Minnesota in your warm the moment here we are at the end of Autumn...the cool winds have been here...the heaters are on...the sea is beautiful...Have a beautiful Sunday xoxo

  11. Dear Irina
    First of all, your artwork on the header, It is absolutely beautiful!!! This post is such a delight.. Eye candy plus.
    I love the spoon sculpture, I can see a fine mist there, and what a great use of mailing tags on the life size sculpture.. Thank you so much for the tour of your little part of the world and also for visiting and leaving such encouraging words about my sketch of Audrey.
    I have always loved her and she was such a beautiful person, inside and out.. I am so happy you enjoyed my rendition of her... There are features that do not seem quite right but I will practice.
    Enjoy your day dear friend.. See you at the Paris Party.. Bebe is calling me, must run.

  12. It's been a beautiful summer weekend up in Toronto, Ontario, but your photo collection is a tough act to follow .... so is your wonderful list of blog friends. Thanks again for the Zendoll blog visits. You're a doll!

  13. how lovely to be shown around such a beautiful, wonderful and fascinating place. all of the photographs are gorgeous! and the bunny is so sweet :3 i once had a neighbour who had a velvety bunny just like that, it felt like velvet to stroke too.
    i really love to see where people live and you are very lucky to live somewhere so fab. salad nicoise is one of my favourites too, though i have a vegetarian version (minus anchovies, maybe with a little roasted red pepper instead). thank you for sharing your sunshine with us :)
    warmest hugs xxx

  14. thank you so much for your kind words. i really hope that your travelling dreams are fullfilled and that there is a possibility we shall met someday :)
    wishing you a very lovely weekend xx warmest hugs xx

    p.s i left a reply to your comment on my blog too.


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