Hi SophieGlad to see you have recovered from your last week of stress.Love the armchair it would go well in my sitting room as well!!!! House prices are ridiculous aren't they. Me I'm mortgage free from this year Its wonderful!!!
Hi Sophie,It is nice to have your regular posting back. I love the dressing gown so comfy. Lucky you - your Mum gives you some lovely things. It is so nice that you have similar tastes but it can become difficult with siblings involved it they, too have the same taste.My sister and I have similar tastes and will go out to shop seperately and come back with the same item!It is scary as regards the house prices and I do worry about my son and what he will be able to afford. We were just discussing how to decorate the room which he says will be his in Ireland. Jokingly I said I would choose it as he may be leaving home soon. He said Who says I am leaving home??? He was astounded to think I expect him to leave one day! (Secretly I don't want him to be going anywhere, I just wish he was a bit tidier)Enough of me - enjoy that chair with a lovely book or Christmas magazine and a large glass of something. BUT don't get to near to that fire!Ax
Hi Sophie,That chair is a stunner - curl up and go to sleep, I'd say!Lucy
Bonsoir SophieNow that chair is a perfect match for my Laura ashley sofa.. same material!The velvet fruits are sublime... and yes you are so right about James and the Giant Peach..I can't imagine the day that we don't have a mortgage unless we sell and downsize but I have had itchy feet for far too long and I love my home now..Michelex
You asked about Black Friday sales and the answer is YES, the stores compete for the customers to come to THEIR stores first to spend their money, so they offer very special sales to tempt the customers. Unfortunately, they have a limited number of the items so one must choose which store and which items are the most important. Some stores open the doors as early as 4:00 in the morning and there are always people waiting outside for the doors to be opened. There can be such a crowd that getting the shopping carts through them can be nearly impossible. And, some people even camp outside the store wrapped in heavy clothes and blankets for the entire night just to be first in line for the items they hope to get. It can be madness but some people love the challenge of Black Friday...I'm NOT one of them and I avoid the stores on that day! Too much for me. I would rather pay regular prices and shop when it's not busy.
Oh Sophie that chair is just perfect!! No wonder you made the space for it, we'd squeeze that in somewhere as well for sure!! House prices have gone crazy in Aus too, it's very hard for a first home buyer now. Our mortgages are typically usually for 25-30 years. Have a lovely Sunday curled up in that chair with a good book, that is if Spider hasn't made it his own space yet?!! Jenn and Jacqui
I love the chair...and I love the velvet fruit. It'd cost the earth to post them to me, though lol...hmm, most people in the south have air conditioning, because frankly, it'd be hard to survive our summer heat without. We own our place and most people here have that "my own place" in their head as a goal. Most of the people we know own their own house or condo...and Black Friday? You can't prove it by me, it's not something I participate in, but the day after Christmas, I'm there! It's the deals I get on ornaments and wrap and holiday cards...can't help myself! Now, just don't let the job get you down, I like it better when you're "springy"...lol
Hi,,It has been awhile. The chair is very nice.i to am anxious to know how things are different from the USA and UK.I live in Mississippi.I have a 2story home. 4 bedrooms upstairs. We have what we call central units.( heat pumps) They use freon) We have two of them one for upstairs and one for down. The units set outside and there is duct work( like tubing) the unit is used for both cool and heat. Each room in the house has a vent the air comes threw. We have hot water tank and hidden pipe runs to the bathroom and kitchen.
Love the chair! Does your sister read your post or is it a mystery to her? I actually wondered that when you posted her gift recently of those darling cups. ha ha To answer your question along with the other ladies... As for mortgages, yes we do some flexible 15, 30 and recently new 40 yr payment plans although I have never personally heard of a mortgage holiday. Yeah that would be nice! I have heard of it with car payments and then they just extend your payments an extra month or two for the month you skipped. The national average for a mortgage monthly payment here is $2,300.00. Yes, per month! It is extremely hard to get a mortgage here in the USA because unless you have a lot of money to put down, you will have a huge monthly payment. I am sure you have heard how many people are going into foreclosure on their mortgages because they over extended them selves when they did creative financing. Instead of just a straight 30 year loan, people chose different options with crazy rates and then the rates when up so now they can't afford their house payment and are back to renting again. As for home heating, I think it depends on which area of the USA you live in. I live in the San Francisco area and we get extremes of both cold and hot, so I have central heat and air conditioning, so that means I have vents that go to all the rooms that the air blows through, very nice feature. I also do not have a basement. Well, enough of that! So did your show, Strictly come dancing have it's grand finale yet? Our is this week, can't wait!
Hi!Your chair is scrumptious! I love it!!We have "central" heat and air conditioning. It is electric. There is an air handler in the attic and a condensing unit outside. There is a thermostat on the wall inside and we can switch from air cond. to heat just by moving a little switch. Some older homes in the states still have radiator heat....if they want air conditioning, they use a window unit, for the room they want it in.Mortgages...hmmmmm that is a different thing all together. Right now the US is in a fix concerning mortgages. The interest rate was low (still is) a few years ago and property values were sky rocketing. People bought homes they couldn't afford, with a adjusted rate mortgage, which meant that after a couple of years, the rate would go up and they had to refinance. Alot of people here are losing there homes due to foreclosure, because they can't afford the higher interest payment. Each state is different. If you live in Florida or California it is the most diffifcult to be able to afford a home. If you go to Ohio and move to a small town, you can still buy homes for under $100,000. Hope that helps!Penny
I love the arm chair too. Red is so cosy in a sitting room.Have a lovely week.XX
Hi Sophie, I love hearing about your life in England too!! I live in the midwest (USA) so our temperatures range from up to 100 and down to -10. Air conditioning is a must because of the humidity. Most homes are heated with central natural gas or propane gas heat, some are electric. It is VERY rare to find boiler heat with radiators, although I think they are more common on the east coast. We live in the country on a farm so we heat with wood using an outdoor wood furnace. I've never heard of a payment holiday, how nice!
Hi Sophie,Love your new chair. What a nice mum!We have forced air heating. It is electric. We have a gas water heater, that heats the water.We do not get a vacation from the morgage ever!!!I never go shopping on Black Friday. You can get bargains all through the season. It is kind of hype. I do like shopping online as well.Have a great week,Rosemary
The armchair looks so welcoming...and a glass of red wine would so go with it!Glad inspection went well!The mere mention of the word has made me feel for you!Dxx
Here in the States, I have not heard the term "housing ladder". I think investing in a house is a matter of how you were raised. Some people are happy to rent, if they do not understand propery investing.However, the idea of buying what you can to sell and buy up is also very common here too. Mortgages can be 15 year or thirty, generally.Prices here are shooting up and in some states it is about half a million $US to buy a very tiny home in a bad area.The US dollar being down and interest rates on a staedy climb make it more and more difficult for young people to get started, unless their parents can help.Lovr the velvet!
What a lovely, comfy looking chair. I love the colour!
Sophie, I love the armchair and pillows! Oh, and the pajamas~ I feel for Spider, they must be such a temptation to lay on! Soft pajamas are the living end!We have central air in our home, and I thiiiink we have gas for water heating, electric for everything else. It's nice to have central air!Thank you for telling us so much about your life~ it's interesting to know these little details about living in England! When I bought this house, I got a fixed rate for 30 years, but I don't believe we have the option to skip a month, ever. Because Randy had paid about half of his mortgage before we were married, when I sold the old house after he died, I had a really nice profit, so I was able to buy another house (much smaller, but newer and better built, in a much safer neighborhood). I wouldn't have been able to purchase a house, were it not for that big down-payment I was able to give, I'm sure. Here in Ohio at least, you need to have a few years' credit history for companies to want to give you a loan, and I only had about 1 and a half years' worth, at that time. Since I could put so much down on my house, though, it lowered my monthly payments~ I'm paying less per month for my 3-bedroom house than most renters pay on a 2-bedroom. Some months its a struggle to pay, though!Still enjoying Maeve Binchy~ I'm going over to the online library pages to see what other books of hers I can put on hold!!
Sophie, I do believe that if I were to sit in that chair, I would never get up again:) It is marvelous!A few years ago, just about anyone could finance and purchase a home, usually a 30 year mortgage but 15 years are common too...never heard of a 50 year. You can make adjustments to your mortgage but if you do, you have to pay more closing costs. We bought a very small home because we knew that I would stay at home when we had children. Since I will be returning to work next year we are talking about buying some land and building a home...that has always been my dream. We are lucky because our house has really gone up in value and we should be able to make a good bit from it.Most of the houses here are central heat and air...what we wouldn't give to not have to use air conditioning!As far as Black Friday, I went out once and did find some good deals, but it is much too stressful for me. There is just an atmosphere of frenzie that I do not enjoy.Like you, shopping online is much more my style:)Have a great day!RhondaGoodness, I do run on....sorry it's so long.
Hey Sophie,Love the chair and the fruit pillows! I do not go near any stores on Black Friday. I'm with you - not worth the hassle plus I have no patience and I would probably be yelling at people that knocked into me! I do all of my shopping the Monday before Thanksgiving - my mom and I take the day off from work and make a marathon of it. I do any remaining shopping online. We do have central heat here. We have an oil driven system with an oil tank in the basement and radiators in each room. Some of the newer homes have more upgraded systems. We have 25-30 year mortgages as well. I've never heard of a holiday but I could be out of the loop!Karla
Love that chair Sophie, now how are you going to hide it from your sister?! Have a good weekKim xxxx
Sophie, your questions about Thanksgiving, sales and heating systems really make me smile! They're so childlike in their innocence and honesty, kind of like the questions I used to ask my American pen-pal when I was about 13. The world can seem so different can't it?I find Thanksgiving is rather like Christmas without the presents, big turkey dinner, lots of family around and crashing out in front of the TV after you eat! It seems to me that Americans will go to any lengths not to miss Thanksgiving, the day before is the single busiest travel day of the entire year. I think that there's more importance attached to Thanksgiving (as a family event) than Christmas.We have all manner of mortgage deals here too, to entice you to buy, but no free months. I live in Michigan and the economy is dreadful, mainly due to the reliance of this State on the motor industry. Forclosures (the bank taking back the house) are up 93% over this time last year. House prices are cheaper than in the UK and you get a lot more for your money too in terms of house size and garden area.Heating - Modern houses are generally built with forced air heating which comes into each room from inconspicuous vents either in the floor or the walls. The American boiler equivalent is the furnace, the water heater is usually separate. With the forced air system you can go from hot air in the winter to cold air conditioning in the summer. A lot of older houses still have radiators. We also have a gas fire in our family room which is super efficient and throws out a lot of heat. With the exception of our study, utility and downstairs loo, the entire lower floor of our house is all open plan with each room flowing into another one, makes it quite a bind to heat properly I can tell you! But, this is Michigan, other states might be different.Regards,Brenda
Hi Sophie, your red velvet chair is fabulous!Our home is heated with two furnaces, fueled by natural gas. The larger of the furnaces, heats the main floor and lower level (basement), the smaller, heats the top level of our home. There are two air conditioning units for warmer months. We have two gas fireplaces indoors. A wood burning fireplace is on the porch. We use the basement fireplace more than the others.Mortgages here, run about 20 to 30 years. Right now, we are in a housing slump..hope it's over, at least by sometime, next year. We would love to sell our home and move to a smaller home in our beloved Missouri Ozarks! Pat
PS: Our air conditioners are central and work with the same, in floor duct work, as the furnaces.As for Black Friday, I don't participate. Perhaps if I were younger. My daughters and oldest granddaughter love to shop Black Friday and have a well thought out plan and cell phones to keep in contact, for the event.Pat
That armchair is wonderful!! SO glad she gave it to you, lucky girl!Michelle
No room for a Laura Ashley chair? I must go back and read that because I must have imagined I read it like I was having a nightmare before going to bed. LOL! Yep, you really said it! It is just beautiful and looks like it is saying to sit down and warm up on the wonderful velvet. I love it against the wood too in your room. I would be very jealous too if I was your sister. :)Now about that peach...how cute! I just love the story James and the Giant Peach. It should be required reading for both kids and adults alike. In Holland, the house prices have gone through the roof and the situation here is much the same as in England. We would love to move on but after over 4 years of viewing homes, I am pretty much giving up hope. What we need now in a house, we can no longer afford. It is really sad to think you are stuck in life in your 40s but things are just unaffordable now. ~~ Heidi ~~
Hi Sophie,Love your chair. You're lucky to get it. I don't do Black Friday. I'm too impatient to wait in those long lines. Here in Ohio, my house has air conditioning in the summer (too hot and humid in Cincy then) and we have gas heat in the winter. We used to have electric heat but it doesn't put out the kind of heat as gas does. Have a good week.
What an absolutely perfect chair and the color is divine!
Sophie,I'm so sorry that I haven't been around lately. I'm missing out on a lot of things here. Your chair is gorgeous and I just love those fruits. Kinda fairytale like.Love,Julie
Hello Sophie! I love your new chair!!!! I have been thinking of a red velvet sofa myself, but with 2 kids,a dog ,cat and a rather sloppy husband, I think this little dream will have to wait, sigh! I love James and the Giant Peach,I had watched the movie before I had kids,now that I think of it I should read the book! We have a 100 year old home and we have a gas furnace with radiators. I am not sure when they were installed. You could not catch me dead at a Black Friday sale some people are so vicious and crazy, no way!!! I will shop online and get overcharged on shipping, thank you very much. People here start standing out side of the stores at 2 in the morning! EEEK! It is still pretty easy to buy a home in the states as long as you have good credit.And with all of the foreclosures there are a lot of houses to choose from. I hope that youhave a nice week! "See" you soon!
Love the chair.... won't the cushions go well on that one? And congratulieriations on the inspection. Yo! Go Girl!
Hello Sophie,You lucky thing that chair is just gorgeous! how could your mum part with it?Where are the fruit cushions from? i have never seen anything like them before...stunning!XxX
I don't like Black Friday at all. I don't go shopping that day - as even though some of the bargains may be terrific, it only makes me spend unnecessarily and besides I hate shopping in a crowd! Love that chair!
Sophie, First off, another thing in common with you. Sisters! My sister is always green when she sees something my mom passes on to me. :-)How lucky you were to be the recipient of that Laura Ashley chair! I love it!You've got a hot topic here! On the heating systems, I think most people in the U.S. have furnaces with ductwork. However, many older houses, particularly on the east coast, do have boilers with steam heat. I am on the west coast but we have steam heat in our house. It is much more efficient for our large house, healthier (because no dust is blown through your home by dirty ductwork) and feels great! However, we cannot have air conditioning due to no ductwork. Our heating bill is still huge, being that we have a huge old house. On the mortgages, we got a thirty year on our house 6 years ago. We wanted to keep our payment as low as possible, but it is still over $2300 a month. And we had quite a large down payment! YIKES! And if we were to buy our house today without several hundred thousand dollars to put down (our house went up tremendously in value), I shudder to think of how much it would be each month. I don't know how first time homeowners do it these days. Happy day,Melissa
Sophie, the armchair is fabulous - looks so cozy and comfy. And those velvet fruit cushions are adorable!
Hi Sophie,The chair is very beautiful, love the colour and those fruit cushions are fab!!!!!Take care,Sandi x
Hi Sophie! I was behind on visiting your blog. Congratulations on not burning the school down ;-) Our Brit neighbors came to our house for Thanksgiving dinner. They were very leery of our pumpkin pie. Have you ever had it? One liked it and one did not. Janet has been bringing me mincemeat tarts from a British filling she brought over. They are so delicious!Your 'new' chair' looks great and I love your velvet fruit pillows.Good for you for paying extra on the mortgage. We're doing the same and will have a big celebration when it's all done. Most mortgages are 30 year here. Ours was 15 but we had to add some on. Now we're getting closer to the end.Lallee
Love, love the sweet chair! Oh and I adore the adorable fruits too! be careful that James doesn't come looking for that giant peach!I think you have all the answers you need to your questions.Our heat is gas and we have a gas fireplace. We have central air conditioning that is electric. Putting in different units next Spring..one for upstairs and one for the ground level and basement.Most mortgages are 20-30 with something as a down payment. We are in Ohio where costs are lower but we chose smaller with a smaller yard so it was easily affordable even with me not working and so we could adopt Grace, pay for Dan's college and travel. Sadly so many Americans choose bigger even when they can not really afford it and our foreclosure rates are sky high.I have had all manner of heating in all the homes we have lived in and actually loved my radiators in the old house we lived in, on base, in Virginia! I love the little hissing and how I could warm up a towel on them, such as that.I wonder what the shipping cost would be for you to send that luscious chair to me?? *smile* How dear of your Mother!!Hugs,Sue
That chair is so lovely and the colour well just beautiful, and just in time for the festive season too!I am loving your 'fruit' too, totally magical & scrummy!Love Alison x
Wow, that is a fabulous armchair! Your sister will most certainly be jealous! :)I too am fascinated with the differences between here and the UK. I think most of us Americans see the UK as such a romantic place to live... you all do have the most fantastic and lovely accents of any country. But then again, I'm from the southern part of the US. I spend most of my time at the supermarket surrounded by southern women with big hair screaming at thier children to take their pants off thier heads and put them back on thier bodies. But, I digress.1. We have central heat and airconditioning. No boilers or radiators, our heat and air comes from vents in the ceiling. We do have gas heat, as opposed to electric, which is a less 'dry' type of heat but costs more. I think radiators are more common in the north and in older homes.2. Black Friday is the most miserable event ever. I hate it, and somehow in the mania, I hardly think people save much money. 3. Mortages here in the states are getting very skiddish. It used to be that you could get a flexible loan (interest rate, payments), but these days it isnt wise. Interest rates have risen and really hurt those with 'flex loans.' Also, house prices and home sales are also really slow... I'm relieved we bought our house when we did, but also thankful we arent trying to sell. I see a lot of very cute, reasonably priced houses sitting on the market without selling. Scary.Ok, didnt mean to write a novel.
Hi Sophie, Well its not sunday anymore but wednesday here, and I have been fine, I see you decoration style is still FANTASTIC!!! Yes I would love to see/feel and smell also tatch the chairs on the photo's hahaha! like yoyur sis, she relly wannts to cross the sea to tatch the materal of that chair? Hmmm I have better reasons, like seeing YOU (when YOU would be my sister):)Please be welcome to visit my blog, we have been to PARIS and I showa lot of hugh collages ( many photo's)of musea's we have visited there, and also a slide-show of the food in France, be welcome I hope you enjoy the photo's . Greetings from JoAnn :)
Love the armchair Sophie! Coincidentally, my Mom is going to be giving us her blue wing back next week. At first I wasn't so sure about the cornflower blue but now I am excited! I wonder what a boiler is? Is that like the tall metal thing that is in each room usually under a window? I actually really like those. The old ones are so cute! They don't make those here anymore. My heat all my life has come out of heat vents in the floor. At our new house they are in the ceiling which is just the weirdest thing to me! Well, at least I no longer have to worry about spilling anything into the heat vents anymore! I had a party once and a pitcher of strawberry margaritas got tipped over down into the heat vent. All winter my apartment smelled of burning strawberries! The housing market has taken a big downward turn as of late here in California but even still prices are so so high! I know people the age of our parents who purchased homes for $18,000 that are now worth $2 million! Everyday I am thankful for our home but we do have friends that rent with no end in sight. They worry they will never be able to afford a little house to call their own and they both have good jobs and are educated! Oh, and about Black Friday. I detest that day! That is the day to lock the doors, make some cocoa and watch a movie! The big sales are just at the low end retailers anyways. It is basically cheap clothes and cheap appliances. No thanks!
Hey Sophie: great chair. Certainly is does look like one to cozy up and enjoy. Yes, most of us in the states have central heating...because I have a VERY old house, I have a boiler instead of a regular furnace. And because I have a boiler, I do not have air conditioning. But, I live in the country and really don't need it. My hot water is totally unrelated to my heating system. Lots of folks in the states rent homes but it is very desirable to own one's own home. Mortgages come in all kinds but one has to be extremely careful to "read the fine print". Lots of foreclosures in the states these days.
I am sooo happy to have found your blog! It has become one of my favorites. We have many of the same items and very much the same taste! Thanks for giving me inspiration!Jen
Sophie,I loved reading every one of these comments about housing. If you recall, I am a Realtor (estate agent to you) in Massachusetts. Here most people have 30 yr. mortgages, but the new trend to keep payments lower is the 40 year. In my area, most new homes have hot water heat. There is a boiler in the basement (looks like a furnace, but literally is a big pot of water that boils). The boiler may be powered by natural gas or oil. The radiators of the olden days have been replaced by baseboard units. The hot water runs from the boiler thru pipes in these units and heats the rooms. The hot water is also made by the boiler, eliminating a hot water heater. Newer, homes here have central air conditioning, which requires a system that is separate from the heat, in most cases. Most of us make do with AC units that go in our windows and look frightfully ugly. Can you tell I sell houses? I can ramble on about them at length, but will stop now!No Black Friday for me. This year there were mini riots at the Coach( handbags) Outlet near me. Sad how rude people will get for a bargain.Janet
Great chair, it looks really comfy and cozy. Been AWOL from the blogging scene recently so have a lot of catching up to do. Hopefully life will be a touch less hectic now and I'll be able to keep up with everyone properly.
What a generous Mum ~ I love your armchair.As for the cultural questions, I can hardly believe it, but I saw a Boxing Day sale advertised to start this Saturday!Yes, we have central heating. We have radiators at home. As for mortgages, I can't really answer that question, as I don't have one. Like many others in the city, we rent our apartment.In case you are interested, Canadian Thanksgiving is the first Monday of October ~ which many of our neighbours in the U.S. don't even know (they think we celebrate at the same time as them).Do visit my blog soon Sophie ~ I'm having a giveaway.Marie x
Just love those fruit pillows. I've never seen anything like them. I think in the US we seem to be losing some of the middle class. It seems people have really big homes, or none at all and live by renting each month. The one gal who stated a lot of people moved out of homes when the mortgage rate adjusted was true around where I live. Alot of huge empty homes sat.
i have questions about the mason person brushes. love these!can you e-mail me......firstname.lastname@example.org saw your comment at the inspired room! love your blog.Also, do you have a brown betty teapot?Best,kara & darcy
Aren't mom's great? It is a lovely chair~~just waiting for a good book & a cup of tea!Michelle
Looooove velvet!! That chair is gorgeous. You must be just thrilled. Mortgage holidays?? No, we don't have those. I think the saying is that most Americans are 2 paychecks away from being homeless. Seriously! We overspend. We buy on credit. We have stores that will cash our paycheck before we get it - at horribly high interest rates. (They accept the title to your car as collateral.) My husband and I only have one credit card and we only use it in the case of an emergency. We've owned 3 houses (at different times, of course) and sold them with a small profit. But we moved not to make money but because we kept having more children. =) We've fixed that now so I plan to live in this house for a very long time! Blessings... Polly (p.s. Oh, we have gas forced heat and air - Children and Family would have a fit if there were radiators out in the open where children could get burned! (gasp) It's all to protect the children but I think they go way overboard. Black Friday = nightmare! I try to do everything online but this year my son's girlfriend wanted me to take her out. We stood in line at one store for hours!)
Sophie, I know you have so much going on presently but I just wanted to stop by and wish you a very Merry Christmas! Best wishes to you and your family! I hope your sister is recovering well. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year Sophie! Cece
Merry Merry Christmas Sophie!!Love,Robin
What a lovely chair!We live in Hotlanta, which is the nicname for Atlanta, Ga. Its very humid here and sometimes the a.c. is needed just to keep you from dropping indoors- gross!I hope your sister is recovering well- how nice to have you to look after her!
I'll be glad when it's 2008 because you'll be back and I've been missing you like crazy...please tell me that Spider got a sweater from Father Christmas...I ordered it up special...hugsSandi
Cool velvety pillows...where did you get them? Did you make them? What a great idea. I've always wanted to make tomato pincushions or other fruit pin cushions....but I never thought of pillows! Thanks for showing us!~ Jillian
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