We have typically rented The Bracy House year-round (though this year we’ve closed it down to complete the construction of the cottage) but we have always reserved Thanksgiving week for ourselves. Though this house was bought and renovated with the intention of it being a vacation rental, we consider it our home in so many ways and look forward to hosting our family within its walls every November. This year, we had friends as well as family (11 adults and 3 kids, in total) and received an absolutely beautiful snow that made the week extra cozy!
November means heavier coats, warm socks, wool blankets on the beds, and Portsmouth’s White Heron Winter Warmer Chai in the pantry.
Would you like to know where we source our decor and what inspires us? Head over to Pinterest to see our boards filled with our finds for the house, what we’re planning for the garden and cottage, as well as what we find just downright inspiring!
We spent the better part of Sunday staking out the new cottage. After days of rain, it was a dirty job but it was pretty exciting to stand in what would become the rooms in our lovely little contemporary cottage. And like everything we do at The Bracy House, we had some finds including a couple old croquet mallets that were made in London. Next up, we dig a big hole!
Step one in the cottage project is taking down the existing building. Unfortunately it was not built on a proper foundation and was filled with mold so it was best to start from scratch. The entire thing came down in 30 minutes (though did include a coffee break.)
For those of you who have hung around us for a while, you know that we’ve been hankering to replace the ruins on our property we affectionately refer to as “the cottage”. Last March, we were all set to squeeze it in before our rental season but our contractor had different ideas. So fast forward seven months and we have a new contractor and a new start date this week. It’s exciting and scary all at the same time. But the plan for this property has always been to replace and/or renovate all the existing buildings and the cottage is up to bat! Stayed tuned as we start another chapter of The Bracy House…
The last guests of the season checked out on Saturday and The Bracy Cottage finally begins! Our contractor needs access to the site so begrudgingly we’re taking down what we think is the oldest white pine on the property. We’re heartbroken. This white pine was 120 years old (the rings told us so) which means that this tree was around for almost all of The Bracy House’s history. But it’s either this or take down 10 others so we’re watching this lovely old tree come down branch by branch.
We feel the weight of this change but look forward to the next chapter that we’ll be writing. Part of that may be a new fire pit surrounded by eight stools we salvaged from the tree. And we’ll plant a new white pine in this very spot.
If you love the North as much as we do, Askov Finlayson just released their 2018 North hats. Plus, every purchase goes towards fighting climate change to keep the North cold.
I’m not going to lie but we love decorative gourd season! Hey, those of us in the Northeast kind of live for this stuff… we go apple picking, there are pumpkins and cornstalks all over the place, and witch sightings aren’t so rare (even outside of Salem.)
We happen to be lucky enough to live near a garden center that has lovely, kind of grotesque pumpkins. Even though our selections this year tended toward the safe side, its nice to know that pumpkins that weird and wonderful are out there. And our stone steps are now adorned with six pumpkins that hopefully the chipmunks avoid (at least for a couple weeks.)
Some thoughts about autumn that had to be started: “One of the things I need to remember during changes of the season from summer to fall & winter, which is biologically a time for living organisms to rest more, is that it's okay to be still. Be still. Maybe just for a moment more than usual.” Yes, please.