The Valley Gals Get Down and Dirty!

Our monthly artsy group, The Valley Gals, met in May at Julie's fantastic "manse" on the river.
Hers is a house I have always admired from afar, long before I knew it was her house!!

On the inside, (and maybe that's just me) it has the flavor of Under the Tuscan Sun- tall ceilings with vintage furniture and trappings- to die for ! The outside looks like a newly refurbished old barn or old schoolhouse. Deceptive, since it is a new design.

 Resident kitties getting out of the rain (note the camera shy grey tabby hiding under the wood pile!)

Anyway, enough drooling about Julie's house- we were there to get down and dirty!

We all came prepared, with gardening gloves, potting soil, and plants to share.That's where the dirty comes in!!!LOL

First we had a house tour, then a lovely lunch- Julie and her friend Susan are responsible for the fantastic food and teas at their shop Julieanna, in Broadway, Va. So, we knew it would be good!!

                                                Judy taking a pic of me taking a pic of them!!
                                                    (from left- Bobbi, Judy, Susan, Julie)

                                  The luncheon table overlooking the balcony/deck and river

                                        Lunch is served- from left: Bobbi, Judy, Susan

This delish salad, with dates, strawberries, nuts, egg, drizzled with raspberry vinaigrette, and a wonderful homemade bread, warm and fresh from the oven. I am still waiting for that bread recipe!!!!

Dessert was a melt in your mouth scone, and creamy dessert- not sure what it was, but it was GOOD!

                                      Washed down with either of two homemade iced teas.

Miss Darcy retreated to the comfy couch, when she realized her cute little face was not going to get her any crumbs from the table!!

After pushing ourselves away from the table, we moved out to the deck, overlooking the river, to begin designing our planters.

 I kept glancing out, hoping to get that elusive photo op of an eagle or osprey, but it was too late in the day for any to show up.....sigh.

At our previous meeting, we each had been assigned a group of plants to bring and share, there were plenty to go around, and some leftovers.

I brought several containers to plant in -couldn't narrow it down to just ONE!- an old tea kettle, a rusty little pail, and a tabletop greenhouse that has been sitting vacant on my porch for years.

                         I didn't get a photo of all the finished containers, but here are a few.

All too soon, the day was over, we carted our newly planted treasures out into the drizzle to head on home.

Julie's chickens were chortling away, checking out the activity as we left.

As a follow up to this month's planting theme, in June, we will meet back at Judy's, to try our hand at making hypertufas- stay tuned!!!!


  1. Love the vintage pot planter!!!

  2. Love all the pictures...lunch looks divine!

    oxo Judy

  3. This is a wonder-filled visual of your day, and the plantings and containers are great and such fun to look at. Lennie

  4. OK first of all I got VERY excited about your hypertufa get together...I had many years where I HAD to make a batch ... just because

    Lennie, Judy and I took a hypertufa 'class' at a flower pick your own farm (name escapes me) outside of Purcelleville

    you all are going to have a fabulous time!

    sure looks like your visit to Julie's was special in every way...great fun in getting creative minds and busy hands together!

    Lovely post Pat!

  5. It really was a great day in the country with friends & we made something to take home with those memories....thanks Julie.

  6. Awesome house with awesome owners... Well, I may be a little biased. Glad you got to enjoy it. Great pics, Pat.