The Once Upon A Tea Time blog started way back in 2008 and it has brought so many wonderful people into my life (even long-lost friends). We were living in this rambling, ranch-style home in the South Bay (south of SF) when I started the blog. I wrote about artists and other creatives, featured home tours and practically anything that caught my eye and attention. Today, I thought we could revisit the home that inspired OUATT- it was a ramshackle place when we started and we were so excited to make it ours, and reveal its awesome potential. By the time we left 10 years later, there was not a knob or wall that was left untouched- even thinking about all the work that went into it is tiring. It will always remain a sweet memory! We all have places like that, right?
The kitchen was small and the coziest room in the house. It looked out over the garden which my husband, an avid gardener, allowed to run wild- delphiniums, Lily of the Nile, hollyhocks, oleander and jasmine punctuated with fig, plum, orange, jacaranda and lemon trees. It was just scrub and weeds when we bought it and he patiently coaxed it into this wild, glorious creature! We gutted the existing kitchen and replaced it with a darker granite which had coppery-gold flecks in it. The black on the countertops would reflect the green of the trees and in the summer, would be the nicest place to hang out with a cup of tea or a tub of ice-cream.
Because of all the vegetation, the house had this shaded light indoors and that’s really where I learnt how to take a decent photograph. We moved to be closer to work, schools etc. and our current home has my heart now but what sweet memories! I visited recently because I am in touch with the current owners (who when they bought it were already familiar with the house because they recognized it from the blog, another happy coincidence) and it brought back so many memories. Drinking tea with the lovely lady of the house last week, and looking at the still-wild garden made me feel the house had come full circle and another young family was putting their stamp on it. Have a wonderful day!
All images credit: Studio OUATT