The “Plum Crazy” Fall Porch and Hickory Cottage Update

Hello Dear Readers!!!

I have a soft spot in my heart about the last Fall Porch

that I created in my former house.

However, I look forward to “going crazy”

on the Fall porch next year at Hickory Cottage!

I was  attracted to the beautiful Berry colors that Fall.

The shades of purple and plum have been seen

throughout the house for Fall that  year.

It was fitting that I go “plum crazy” on the porch too.

So here is The “Plum Crazy Fall Porch

and Hickory Cottage update!


Fall Porch 2017-HousepitalityDesigns


It was fun scouring the garden centers and

Farmers’ Market for purple mums.


Fall Porch 2017-Housepitality Designs-5


I loved this corner of my front porch . . .

to sit and watch the world go by.

Neighbors on power walks . . . neighbors walking their dogs . . .

children riding their bikes.

It was a great neighborhood to live in

and we Southerners love our porches!

Our new home is at the end of a cul-de-sac

with few homes on it now.

The new p0rch had to be smaller due to the footprint

of the house taking up so much space on the lot, 

however, still big enough to place some chairs on it

to sit and relax and take in the beautiful world!


Fall Porch-2017-Housepitality Designs


I would like to think that my porch

had a feeling of making people feel welcome

as they walk up the steps to the door.

I love having flowers on the porch at all times.

Well maybe not so much in the days of 30 degree weather! 


Fall Porch-Housepitality Designs-2


For many years, 20 to be exact, I have placed my

“Welcome Friends” out on the porch each Fall.

A pumpkin that I found while traveling with friends in Colorado.

I carried that pumpkin on the plane ride home . . .

checked my carry on bag as I wanted

to make sure this pumpkin made it safely home.


Boots Planter-Housepitality Designs


Did you notice my boot planter in the photo with the pumpkin?

I bought this cutie at Arhaus and it was originally an olive green in color.

I painted it a dark gray and have to admit it looks much better.


Fall Porch 2017-Housepitality Designs


Since my home was officially on the market,

I debated about the wreaths.


Fall Wreath-Housepitality Designs


I debated with myself for a minute . . . wreaths won the debate.

My Fall wreaths from the past year

with blue dried hydrangeas were in the attic.

The hydrangeas turned brown, but that was O.K.,

as I fluffed them up with plum!


Wreath Supplies-Housepitality Designs


I purchased two stems of plum hydrangeas

and pulled the small flower stems apart,

hot glued them to the dried hydrangeas and added ribbon.


Fall Porch-2017 HousepitalityDesigns


I am happy that I chose to go a little “plum crazy” on the porch

as I did in the sunroom.

Love how the plum/berry color coordinates

with the cobalt blue in the planters

and the two fountains.


Fall Porch-Housepitality Designs-3


There is one thing for certain . . . when you walk up to my porch,

you will quickly feel a sense of calm

when you hear the sound of trickling water.


Fall Porch 2017-Housepitality Designs-4


Fall Porch 2017-Housepitality Designs-2


It was a little bittersweet when I was decorating my porch

for Fall that year.

Will this be the last Fall porch that I do in this house?

Yes, it was.


Fall Porch -2017-Housepitality Designs


And now to the Hickory Cottage.

Unfortunately, I have been pretty sick

after the first two treatments.

Not being able to leave the house for more than 2 weeks.

However, my doctors have collaborated

and they decided to take away one med

that was the culprit for making me so sick.

Not part of the “main regimen” but one

that the side effects for me

were far too great for the outcome it will give.

Landing me in the hospital for IV’s twice 

since the last treatment.

So hopefully, I can be more involved in the house now

and blog more!!!!  🙂



The kitchen/great room.

After being away from the house over 20 days

Seeing most of it come together was a treat.



Left side of the kitchen with refrigerator

and my coffee station next to it.




The right side where the sink will be.



I am happy that I added the “peninsula” with the sink

as the sink was originally in the island in the plans.

I wanted to be able to “have a view” from the sink.

Here’s is one side of the laundry room.




I wanted a large apron sink here

to fill it with flowers to arrange!



The other rooms are coming along too…

Hopefully soon I can bring you more photos.



In the meantime, I will “Keep Calm and Chemo On”

Again, I want to thank all my family, friends

and blogger friends who have been so very kind

with their beautiful wishes and prayers, cards and

pretty packages on the porch!…I sooo appreciate you all!!!

I am truly blessed!!

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  1. I’m so excited for you and your new home is coming along beautifully! Hope the treatments are easier now and thinking of you.
    Janet’s recent post…The Style Showcase – Your NEW Destination For Home Decor InspirationMy Profile

  2. Oh, you have your counters now! It’s coming along nicely. Hope you do start feeling much better!!!

  3. Glenda Niederhofer says

    Your new home is beautiful….can’t wait to see it & you giving us a tour! Praying for you during this bump in the road! I’ve been looking for your posts & this morning was a treat to hear from you!

  4. Rebecca turner says

    I’m glad to hear that you’re doing a little better! I’ve been wondering. Prayers for your recovery! ? I can’t wait to see what you do to your new house next Fall. Whatever it is, I know it will be pretty!

  5. Shirley, I always loved the way you decorated your porch, tasteful and beautiful. Hickory Cottage is coming along and I can’t wait to see it finished. I am thankful that you have had a few good days and praying that you will do better after the treatments.

  6. I have missed reading your blog. I hope that you will feel better after the medication adjustment. Your new home is coming along nicely and I can’t wait to see the finished product. Feel better soon.

  7. Alice Genzlinger says

    Look for your post to return almost daily when you are fully recovered and had a nice surprise this morning when I saw this post. Thankful that your medical team came together to make this journey less stressful. Many prayers are being heaven sent for His intervention on your behalf. Your cottage, it looks like a castle, is coming together nicely. I spied some really pretty beginnings and know it is just the beginning of a beautiful and much loved home.

  8. Everything in the new house is looking beautiful! Thinking of you and sending prayers of healing.

  9. Ooh how exciting to see all the progress! I see your builder solved your cupola dilemma, it looks so handsome in place. Keeping you in my thoughts and prayers and hope you have better days ahead without the drug interaction you were having. ♥

  10. The new place is looking great! I know you will enjoy it for many years to come! Keeping you always in my prayers.

  11. Absolutely beautiful house so far. Am keeping you in my thoughts and prayers as you continue your treatment.?

  12. Penny at Enjoying The Simple Things says

    I am glad they changed your meds so you feel better! I have been thinking about you daily. Your home is turning out beautiful! I love all of the choices you have made. Sending hugs and prayers your way.

  13. Surely our Lord is carrying you through this horrid time of sickness and treatment. I can picture Him walking along calmly with you in His arm, knowing His plans for you are good, albeit devastating at the moment. Being away from your new home for so long must be especially hard for a creative like you! May our Lord surprise you with beauty and function at every turn as He knows your heart’s desire.

  14. Beautiful home Shirley! I am just catching up with your posts. I was shocked to learn of your diagnosis. So happy you are feeling better. I, too, went through all this 2 years ago. I am much better now. I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers!!!
    I am starting the building process as well. Will accept any tips or advice. Meeting the designer today. If you don’t mind my asking, what quartz counters did you go with?

  15. It is so good to see your post! I have missed them. The house is beautiful and I pray for your good health to return quickly!! My sister in law in Carolina Beach is in her second year of colon cancer, and I see how tough the road is…but it WILL be just a bump in the road. Take good care…

  16. What a wonderful treat to see a post from you! Your porch looks beautiful and must give you such a feeling of peace and calm when you drive up. You truly have a joie de vivre (joy for life) that will help you in this battle. Your new kitchen is gorgeous, can’t wait to see it decorated! Keeping you in my prayers, dearest Shirley.

  17. Your home is beautiful Shirley. Sending prayers for the worst to soon be behind you so you can enjoy your “forever
    home” this holiday season.

  18. Amy Kaminski says

    So sorry the chemo has knocked you for a loop. Praying for easier days ahead as you battle this “interruption” in your life. May you have peace in knowing that it will soon be a thing of the past and you can get on with decorating your lovely new home. I’m so looking forward to joining you on that journey. Peace be with you sista!

  19. I always enjoyed your porch decorating. I was admiring the ivy topiaries, they look wonderful! Those wreaths turned out perfect. I love how they mirrored each other. Your new home is so lovely, what a great accomplishment for you to look forward to! You’ve utilized the space so well. I agree the sink is placed much nicer in the peninsula vs. the island. Sorry the chemo has been that hard on you. Our daughter had to go through 13 rounds of chemo when she was 4/5 years old. There were some real downs but after the numbers would go back up she would recover. Praying for you! ??

  20. Shannon@belle bleu interiors says

    I was so happy to see your post in my email this morning! You always inspire me with your beautiful creations! I remember the plum autumn decor and how pretty it looked last year. Your new home is just gorgeous, and I can’t wait to see all the beautiful decorating touches you will add. Your strength, grace, and positive attitude is an inspiration to us all. Take care and know that you are in my prayers!!!

  21. Hope you feel better with them taking away that one medication! The house is coming along beautiful! Thoughts and prayers are with you and your husband!

  22. Your new home is gorgeous. I can’t wait to see more. Glad you are feeling a little better and know that you are always in my prayers.

  23. Shirley, your new home is coming along so beautifully! You will decorate every space to bring out it’s possibilities, and I cant wait to see it. Your cupola looks so proud at the very top, a gleaming beacon. Soon all this will be behind you and you will be happily moving from room to enchanting room at the new house. So happy that your team elected to remove the evil drug- so excited. I love you friend, you are in my thoughts and prayers on the daily!! Xo Lidy

  24. Oh Shirley I love the new kitchen. You are going light with your cabinets and I love it! That laundry room is a dream laundry room. So bright and pretty. Love the colors of the cabinets there too. I am glad you got out to see the great progress being made. The outside of the house is so gorgeous. I bet you are getting excited to see it coming together so nicely. Glad they will take away the med making you so sick. That should help you on this journey so much. Keeping my good and healing thoughts and hugs coming your way. Prayers sweet warrior that you will get to the end of all of this soon.

  25. Nothing is too hard for my God! Praying that He will do the work that is needed in your body whether miraculously or through medicine. So thankful that you are improving and so happy to see your post this morning. Your “cottage” is beautiful and I know you can hardly wait to put all the finish touches on it. Waiting anxiously to see the completed home! God bless you today and always.

  26. Debbie Joens says

    I was so pleased to see your post this morning! Praying that every day gets easier for you. The house is looking amazing – can’t wait to see the finished product. I love all of your pineapple accents. One day at a time…..God bless you!

  27. So excited when I see your name in my email! Thanks for the update. I can’t wait to see your decorations in place. Praying you will continue to feel better and know you will beat this beast! Hugs and blessings

  28. I have always LOVED that porch and you always decorated it SO beautifully. I so miss my front porch. I am praying that eliminating the one med will make you feel MUCH better!!!! Stay strong. XO

  29. Linda Ramsey says

    Love your new home! So good to see your blog this morning, glad you’re feeling better. Continuous thoughts and prayers.

  30. I was so glad to hear from you. I pray for you constantly and glad the doctors are acting expediently with the treatments. Your new home looks fabulous. You have made a very positive impact on your readers. Remember thoughts and prayers are always going up for you.

  31. So glad to see everything coming along well….including you!!!

  32. Beautiful porch, beautiful home. Your new home is going to be beautiful also. I agree with you on having a view from the sink, that’s a must for me too. I am envious of your new laundry room with that sink and oval window. I have been thinking of you the past few days and I’m glad you are feeling better. Hopefully the worst is behind you.

  33. Hello sweet Shirley! I am rejoicing that you are feeling good enough to put up a blog post! I do remember that gorgeous plum color that you used on last year’s porch. I have been praying for you and I’m glad to learn that they are adjusting your medication. I am in love with your kitchen and I think that was a wise move to put the sink where you would have a view.

  34. Shirley, I read your blog but usually don’t comment. I was so happy to see your post today, and hope the doctors finally have designed a recipe your body can better tolerate! I love the plum colors you chose for the porch. You have made beautiful choices for your new home and I look forward to seeing you add finishing touches.

  35. Hello Shirley,
    So happy you are feeling better and hopefully eliminating the one med will ease your side effects and no more hospital stays. Hickory Cottage is looking beautiful and that gorgeous copper cupola is the icing on the cake. I know how excited you were to see the progress after not being able to visit for several weeks. Take care and wishing you better days ahead!

  36. Gordon W Subject says

    Shirley, everything is beautifully done. I love it all. Looking forward to seeing much more from you!! Keep strong with your treatment. Rely on GOD!!

  37. Nancy Brantley says

    So glad to see an email from you today. GOD NEVER FAILS. I remember that beautiful plum porch. Your new home is looking good.Looking forward for you to put your decorative touch on it….it will be gorgeous!

  38. Shirley, I was thinking of you yesterday, so it was a treat to have an update this morning. It sounds like your team is taking good care of you so hopefully you will feel better now. Prayers that you will continue to improve each day so you can enjoy your new home. It is going to be beautiful; kitchen is lovely along with the laundry room.

  39. Thank you for sharing your Beautiful Home , I fell upon your Blogg and. Few others ( while sitting up all night in the Hospital with my Handsome , very smart 28 yr old son .Being treated with Brain cancer .Im not sure how it sneaks in , I always say it came in the back door and we had no idea , but your Blogg would take me out of that world for 5 mins , Praying that you are able to be creative and step out of your cancer world a few mins everyday . May God Keep in His arms . D.Golden Cape Cod

  40. Daphne Thomas says

    As everyone has said in their posts, we are all glad to see a post from you today. The house is beautiful and knowing that you are feeling better is a blessing. Cancer is definitely evil but God is Good….Prayers that you continue to feel better.

  41. Oh my friend! I am so sorry you were so sick but it seems the doctors have it figured out for you now. Your house is coming along beautifully! I love it!

    And the purple hydrangeas added were the perfect fit! Hugs and prayers for you!

  42. Elaine Sharrard says

    God be with you during your chemo trips. I only had to have radiation but have been with others as they go thru the chemo. Praying for you to be more comfortable and over with this soon. love your website and pictures are so beautiful.

  43. MARY-ANN (FROM CANADA!) says

    Shirley, it was so nice to get your e-mail this morning. We continue to keep you in our thoughts and prayers. We pray that your chemo will be a bit easier for you now that some of the meds have been adjusted.

    Your new home is just beautiful! How nice it will be when you can move in — once you are feeling better — and can add all your personal touches! It’s going to be a wonderful time for you!

    Take care and get lots of rest! This advice is coming from an old nurse who went through breast cancer and had 6 months of chemo and 35 radiation treatments! The hardships you go through are definitely worth it even though you feel so sick. You just hang in there and keep thinking positive!

  44. Get well soon! I have been thinking of you

  45. I was so excited when your blog popped up in my email today. There are many thoughts and prayers going your way as your present challenge continues. Please feel surrounded by support. Your new home will be spectacular: can’t wait to see the posts as you proceed with everything. Blessings to you,
    Rosie @ The Magic Hutch

  46. You have wonderful taste and your new home looks gorgeous already! Fall is the best., isn’t it? Chemo is awful but it does a lot of good. I sympathize. Hope you feel better soon and the rest of your treatments go by quickly. Hugs and best wishes.

  47. bobbi duncan says

    Shirley, I have had you on my mind so many times and always send up a prayer. I know all your readers are doing the same–we all love you. I am glad they got your meds adjusted so that you’ll be more comfortable. I remember the plum fall decor from last year–so pretty! Hickory Cottage is stunning; always a treat to see updates because you have such great taste, so I know the pictures will be lovely. Big hugs!

  48. I’m glad to hear your doctors have your meds figured out. Hopefully now, you will start to feel better. Looks like your new home is coming right along…it’s going to be gorgeous. Now, all you have to do is concentrate on getting better. You can do this! 😉

  49. I love following the progress on your new house. I can’t wait to see how you furnish and decorate it! Isn’t it nice to have a big project to keep you busy while you are healing? I am praying for strength and comfort for you as you continue your treatment.

  50. mimi (thelma) Mock says

    So great hearing from you!! I want to share Philippians 4th chapter “I can do all things thru Christ who strengthens me” it has helped me in almost 95 year walk…CLAIM IT!!!!!! our prayers and best wishes always….expecting to hear good news about your recovery.. You are special to all of us!!!!

  51. Your porch looks lovely. The plum mums looks fabulous. A pleasure seeing your new kitchen. It is gorgeous. Here’s wishing you good health. Chemo is tough on the body. I have been there, so I know.

  52. Amy Chalmers says

    Omg the outside looks amazing with the brick finished!! It’s SPECTACULAR!! I loved your porch wreaths last year, very inspiring! Keep calm and chemo on, yes my friend you’ve got this!

  53. Elaine Reese says

    Your new home is going to be lovely! Hope you are feeling better since stopping the chemo that was giving you problems. Sending love and prayers your way!

  54. Wow! Congrats on your new home! 🙂 What a lovely porch too! Praying for your health!
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