Summer at home tour

June 20, 2014

EDIT: Winner of the chickadee/bluetit painting is number 3 Patricia
and Winner of the towhee painting is number 37 Marion

It’s been an exciting few days of trying to figure out exactly what where home for the summer is.

I sat in my studio and started to paint and came up with this image: The impossibility of my West Coast chickadee on the same bird feeder as my British blue titmouse. Both the same species of birds, both hundreds of miles apart. And that best describes my life, my friends, because Canada may be my country, but Europe is my home town.

Most of you know that I was born in Prague and now live between Vancouver Canada and Oxfordshire UK, so this probably doesn’t come as a surprise.

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As far as I can remember life has always been like that…an adventure, and this site is a way for me to communicate that adventure with you.

This is where I live for 7 or so months of the year: a 1920 Craftsman cottage nine streets away from the Pacific ocean. Where I have a studio in the loft, with a rather large green and oak trunk, which holds C’s summer journals.

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Chloe has been keeping summer journals practically since she could write. I looked at the journals yesterday. I flipped thru the pages and remembered us in Geneva, in Vienna, in Prague, in Venice, in Paris and in England. Every summer, ever spring, every school holiday and sometimes when there was no holiday but we said, “Stuff that for a game of soldiers, let’s get out of here!” And we lived there. Really lived there. Rented an apartment, spoke the language, cooked the groceries we bought, entertained the friends we made, hiked the country, rented a car and ended up in Lichtenstein, got on the fast train to Prague and spent the night in Berlin (oops)…really lived.

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I’m so glad we glued C’s photo to the front of each journal as a reference to that year. These journals are put away now, safely, for her future, but each one is a treasure of summer memories.

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Right now I’m about five days away from switching city for country, pavement for meadow.

The quirky 1920’s cottage in Vancouver for an equally quirky 1950’s cottage in Oxfordshire with a name rather than an address, West Cottage, five fields away from the Thames, where my love is at the moment.

Switching my beautiful blue/green ocean…

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for my beautiful blue/green river.


Where I always stop for tea and dream up new art, new techniques, new media…

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Like enamelled copper, pottery, stone carving and lino cuts.

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Where my vintage mini and land rover wait for me to join Robert’s one-of-a-kind cars and our friends at races and car shows.

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Where I hound car boot sales and come back with way too many treasures to cart back to Vancouver at once.

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But this summer is a special summer. I’ll be going to Prague first. Back to the heart of my home, my spirit, my wandering Bohemian nature. I’m going where the light is pink and my grandparents sleep in the warm earth. Going to visit family and friends, to speak the language, to walk the streets, to touch the city and connect with my home.


And then, then I’ll fly back to London, and Robert will pick me up and we’ll drive thru Oxford…


and we’ll go home.

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And we’ll stay at home till the weather turns and the early autumn fogs start rolling over the meadows and all the wildflowers turn to seed…


…and the wind will change direction and we’ll feel it and see it in the willows, and I will leave my river…

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…and return to my ocean.


Do you remember a couple of posts back I said I would give away this image (below)? Well, I decided to give away both the chickadee/titmouse and the beginning of this post and this towhee image below, plus a few of my greeting cards, and any other silly and wonderful goodies I can think of, to two random generator numbers, so, if you like, please leave me a comment and I’ll draw the name on Monday morning and post it off PDQ before I leave on Tuesday, (so please leave me a way to get in touch to get your addy). Also, I’m off to visit with my daughter Kerstie and my three granddaughters for the weekend (and this requires hours of driving), so might not have a chance for replies till a bit later, but, since we’re probably all bloggers and you all feel the same thrill, am every so grateful for each and every comment and connection. 😀

Also, sending out a great, big, THANK YOU to Kelly who invited me to take part in this lovely blog tour. Please pop over to her site. You’ll love her warm and gentle nature as much as I do.

Here is the updated blog tour list for everyone to visit these lovely gals.

Wednesday,  June 18th

 On Sutton Place

Stone Gable

My Soulful Home

Thursday,  June 19th

 Country Design Style

Cedar Hill Farmhouse

Lilacs & Longhorns

Friday,  June 20th

 Thistlewood Farms

At The Picket Fence

Jennifer Rizzo 


Saturday,  June 21st

Our Southern Home

Southern Hospitality

Debbie Doos

Veronica Roth

Finding Home

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Hello from Sunday night
A downtown community garden

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  • Reply Patty/NS June 20, 2014 at 7:13 pm

    Wow! Busy or what? And exciting at the same time too. Enjoy your travels. Love the towhee, miss seeing them and so much more, now that we have moved from Vanc Island to NS. Safe travels.

  • Reply Olivia June 20, 2014 at 7:25 pm

    Hello! Everytime I get an email, I love looking at your beautiful artwork. I would love to be put in in the “raffle” or “draw” to win some amazing artwork!
    You can reach me at:
    Thank you!

  • Reply Patricia A. McGoldrick June 20, 2014 at 7:37 pm

    Veronica, I so enjoyed your post, the photos and learning about your summer traditions. Your artwork is so beautiful and I would like to add in my name for the “draws”. My email address is:
    patricia dot a dot mcgoldrick at gmail dot com .
    Best for the summer!

  • Reply mysoulfulhome June 20, 2014 at 8:19 pm

    If nothing at all ever happened as a result of my starting My Soulful Home dot com, but meeting you Veronica, I would be thrilled with the result of my efforts. You truly are a kindred thrilling spirit & I am blessed to have crossed your path. I marvel at your talent, your heart, mind & soul …and your willingness to share all 3 with us. Thank you for being my friend and for taking the time from your very full life to join us on this tour. Safe travels…. p.s the Chloe journals are a treasure beyond measure! xx

  • Reply June 20, 2014 at 9:31 pm

    What a lovely post and Chloe growing up with her special chronicles is priceless and will last a lifetime. You know my email dear Veronica, travel safely!

  • Reply Heather B. in Ontario June 21, 2014 at 12:07 am

    Hello from sunny, warm Ontario! I found your blog on the “Summer at Home Tour”.
    Firstly, Prague is one of my most favourite cities! We taught school in Kiev, Ukraine and traveled often and Prague stole my heart! Enjoy your grandchildren and drive safe!

  • Reply Shawn Stoen June 21, 2014 at 1:40 am

    Veronica, your post today drew me in. The emotions behind your travels, your special times with Chloe, your two wonderful yet very different homes, were felt in your writing. May your journey to Praque be another exciting trip for you – and I look forward to reading all about it on your blog. Safe travels!! Shawn

  • Reply Julie (Lilacs & Longhorns) June 21, 2014 at 2:36 am

    What a lovely post! I so enjoyed getting to know you and get a taste of your adventurous life! I am envious of your travels and your bohemian nature! How wonderful that you have traveled to so many places and lived the life and spoken the language! And, I love your daughter’s journals…how fantastic! What a wonderful way to remember each and every day!
    I am so happy you joined the tour! It’s been a pleasure to meet you!

  • Reply Patty June 21, 2014 at 2:54 am

    O my goodness, what a rich life you have. So dreamy. I would love to be included in your drawing. You are an amazing artist.

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  • Reply Christy @ Our Southern Home June 21, 2014 at 3:26 am

    Very beautiful! What the life you are blessed to live! Enjoy your travels! ~Christy

  • Reply Betty June 21, 2014 at 3:28 am

    I have enjoyed the tour. I agree you have a wonderful rich life.

  • Reply Janet Goulet June 21, 2014 at 3:46 am

    Just found your site this morning and am loving your artwork. Thanks so much for sharing your wonderful story and amazing talent.

  • Reply Laura Lipe June 21, 2014 at 3:49 am

    This is the first time I’ve read your blog and am so envious of all the wonderful places you get to visit/live. But I love where I live in the NC mountains, too. Most of all, I LOVE your artwork!!! I do love birds and just wish I could draw and paint like you do. What wonderful images to enjoy every day. I hope I am selected to receive your artwork. Please keep sharing!!! Smiles, Laura

  • Reply Janet Rostad June 21, 2014 at 4:00 am

    Chloe’s journals are indeed a treasure. Your experiences and wonderful descriptions are a joy to read, and the art an added bonus. Thanks for sharing.

  • Reply Kathleen June 21, 2014 at 4:04 am

    Just found your blog through the tour, amazing. I love your artwork please include me in your raffle.

  • Reply Pamela Smyk Cleary (PSC) June 21, 2014 at 4:35 am

    Please add me to your list of folks who’d love a Veronica Roth original! I love ALL your birds! Thoroughly enjoyed this stop on the tour, reading about your many travels, and the journals are such a great way to keep track & revisit as the years ebb and flow. Thanks for the vicarious trips, and for sharing all your beautiful work! (If I’m lucky enough to be chosen, you can reach me at 🙂

  • Reply Karen June 21, 2014 at 5:23 am

    I thoroughly enjoyed reading your post, and your photos are beautiful as is your artwork. Please include me in the giveaway.

  • Reply truecolorsgirl June 21, 2014 at 5:24 am

    Today was the first day I’ve read your blog, and oh my, how lovely it is!

  • Reply debbiedoos June 21, 2014 at 5:25 am

    What beautiful art work you do. Your photos are stunning and I enjoyed my journey here!

  • Reply Jeanette June 21, 2014 at 5:32 am

    I’m so very happy to have found your website today. You are truly blessed with an amazing life. If I ever had the opportunity to pick only one place where you live it would be hard. Love your photo and artwork. Thank you for joining the tour with us. ~Jeanette

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  • Reply lynne June 21, 2014 at 7:32 am

    First time reading your blog and really enjoyed it and the beautiful pictures. I’m a bird lover and would love to be entered into the drawing. Tks much!

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  • Reply daryledelstein June 21, 2014 at 7:52 am

    enjoy your visit with your daughter and grandchildren … and of course have a safe wonderful journey overseas xo

  • Reply J June 21, 2014 at 9:42 am

    Just discovered your blog via the summer tour…..most enjoyable. Wishing you safe journeys!

  • Reply Yvonne @ StoneGable June 21, 2014 at 9:45 am

    Sounds like you will have such a lovely holiday! Enjoy your time in your native home and England. Sounds like a perfect get away!
    I love your wandering “Bohemian” nature!

  • Reply Gloria June 21, 2014 at 11:32 am

    I like your artwork, especially the birds. Chloe’s journals will be so meaningful as the years pass by. A wonderful treasure. Please add me to the drawing and enjoy your visit with grandchildren!!


  • Reply Sharon Beach June 21, 2014 at 11:36 am

    Enjoyed your story and your lovely pictures.

  • Reply Anna Starner June 21, 2014 at 1:48 pm

    Love your birds. This is the first time I have visited your blog, it will not be my last. I would love to visit Prague just once. You are very lucky to be able to live in Vancouver and Oxfordshire. You must have fun driving around in that wonderful Land Rover.

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    • Reply Cindy Jones June 22, 2014 at 1:23 pm

      Lovely titmouse and chickadee on the music paper. Thanks for the opportunity to enjoy full time

  • Reply Christie June 21, 2014 at 3:37 pm

    I don’t know how you can leave your beautiful home, studios and gardens, yet I don’t know how you couldn’t when you have so many wonderful adventures awaiting you in Prague and England. I look forward to enjoying it all vicariously through your blog. Those journals of Chloe’s are so precious – what a treasure to have. I think you have my email, but just in case, cabjuhasz(at)gmail(dot)com Have a safe journey!

  • Reply Sharon Martin June 21, 2014 at 4:06 pm

    Always enjoy your blog. Your artwork is lovely and I’d be honored to showcase your prints if I win. If I do, contact me at Thanks so much.

  • Reply Mary Paine June 21, 2014 at 4:16 pm

    Veronica, your photos are wonderful. Your artwork is lovely. Sweet birdies. Please add me to your list of admirers.

  • Reply Nell June 21, 2014 at 4:33 pm

    I also just found your blog through the home tour. Your birds are wonderful and I would love to have one of my very own. My e-mail is

  • Reply Kathyrn Dawson June 21, 2014 at 5:50 pm

    Hello, Veronica! The bluetit vs. chickadee is like a part of my life: My husband was in the US Air Force for a long time. One of the places we spent a happy lot of about 5 years was in Suffolk at Bentwaters-Woodbridge bases. We are all bird-watchers, and remember our battle with the bluetits pecking holes in the tops of our milk-bottlecaps to get at the cream! The simple answer was to put a paper cup over top of each, but it took us quite awhile to learn that! I’d really love to have these drawings of yours, as I admire your work loads! My e-mail is:
    Enjoy /have safe travels – look forward to your posts from each place you visit!

  • Reply dianadomino June 21, 2014 at 8:57 pm

    Truly, you are the most divine. <3 I DO hope I win, but win or lose, I know there will always be your stunning blog. <3

  • Reply Romelle Broas June 21, 2014 at 10:18 pm

    Oh, how I love the cottage you shared! I have to admit that I am envious of your adventures. Have a safe travel and may you enjoy your family time. I adore your birds on the music sheets. Gorgeous! I’d love to be entered in your drawing. My addy is linked.

  • Reply EllaDee June 21, 2014 at 11:00 pm

    I read your words with empathy that comes from dividing our time and lives. Having things we love about both places. But that it life. It is seldom exactly the way we’d have it given all our choices. But it is do-able. Sometimes it feels like we have a really big house, so much is one an extension of the other but the hallway is about 500 kms between living spaces. Regardless, the time spent with loved ones and the memories are what it’s all about.

  • Reply Michelle Hed June 22, 2014 at 2:45 am

    Love your blog and I love your art! So glad I took a moment to read all about you. Thanks so much for sharing. -Michelle

  • Reply Marian Bonelli June 22, 2014 at 2:55 am

    Veronica, I’m like you in my travels… Home: born in the states, forever in my heart s California gal! Home: Spain where my heart resides in my little house in the mountains: Home: Wales now where I live, and Beaconsfield where I start new job soon! A nomad, a gypsie… Please include me too in your raffle, I love your art and your words… Marian x

  • Reply elissa field June 22, 2014 at 3:49 am

    I *love* this post — so beautifully expressed and illustrated! I’m excited for you and your travels. Enjoy.

  • Reply michellepond June 22, 2014 at 3:51 am

    How wonderful that you are going to Prague this year. Thank you for telling us your story and sharing your beautiful art.

  • Reply eganj1 June 22, 2014 at 4:17 am

    A beutiful blog post Veronica. I spent 8 years living in 2 places but mine were both in the UK, not as exciting as your lifestyle.

  • Reply carla June 22, 2014 at 7:49 am

    You continue to inspire me with your gentle and loving posts. I look forward to reading about “hometown” visit and the wonderful adventures you find where ever you go. Carpe diem, quam minimum credula postero — Seize the day, trusting as little as possible in the next.

  • Reply Dana Fulton June 22, 2014 at 9:24 am

    Veronica…your posts are little glimpses into your amazing life and I look forward to each one. I love how you find joy in every detail and express it so beautifully through nature and your home, garden and gorgeous art. Thank you! Here’s wishing you a wonderful summer!!

  • Reply Ginny Lynn June 22, 2014 at 12:53 pm

    Lovely homes tour. Your paintings are so unique.

  • Reply Donnamae June 22, 2014 at 3:21 pm

    This is my first time to your blog…just wanted to say “hi”…and tell you how much I enjoyed reading your post! How fun that you get to take all these travels…I’ll be stopping back to read more! 😉

  • Reply Pilar June 22, 2014 at 5:01 pm

    I -love- your colorful drawings/musings on music. Fabulous! Found you through the tour. You can reach me at Sooo jealous of your split life between the country and the Pacific!

  • Reply Rachel Laughton June 23, 2014 at 4:07 am

    What a post !! I could not only see it ,but I felt it. That was awesome and beautiful ,I feel like I was there with you!!!!! Thank you .I enjoyed your post so much.

  • Reply Melodye Shore June 24, 2014 at 1:20 pm

    Veronica, I think you already know how much I adore your artwork! I’m always thrilled to see your latest creations…enough so, that I’ve oftentimes come back (again and again) to admire your birds. Whether or not I win, I’ll always visit your blog for updates, and will be wishing you all the best as you migrate from one nest to another.

  • Reply Diane June 24, 2014 at 6:51 pm

    I feel like I’m on the journey! Have a wonderful time at home.
    can’t wait to hear from you.

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