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The “Don’t Sit Under The Apple Tree With Anyone Else But Me” Box. Most of you won’t remember that song but it was a huge hit during WW II.  The Andrew Sisters --then the leading singing group -- sang it in close harmony and everyone hummed it or tried to imitate them singing it. That’s what this box reminded me of when I first saw it. In any case --you don’t have to sit under it.  You can sit in it --just climb the ladder and there is your tree house just waiting for you.  At the leaf line of the tree is a tiny squirrel.  He’s waiting to see who his neighbors are going to be.  Actually this is something that is quite similar to a favorite box we’ve carried for many years. PV made it originally.  This one has been made for Chamart. The only difference is this tree is in bloom and it is so pretty with the pink apple blossoms. Great box that I think you will enjoy owning.  I have enjoyed having it here. Our price: $252.90.



The "Down by The Old Mill Stream" Box. This house sits on a millrace and the mill wheel is on the front of the house. It has to be quite old. They haven't built things like this in many years. Originally it was a working mill but some wise soul converted it into a home.Lots of character!!! It is half timbered with a thatched roof and a fieldstone foundation which also forms the front steps and wraps around the house to become the raised garden bed in the side yard.The creeper coming around the front of the house is in bas relief. Appropriately a fish for the clasp and inside, another that looks like a speckled trout. The house, by the way, is in Cornwall, near the sea. You can almost smell the sea. If you read Rosamund Pilcher you will recognize this kind of home. Her books are set in Cornwall. Asking Price: $209.00 but $188.90 will buy it.


The Thatched Roof Irish Cottage Box.  Houses like this one are all over Ireland, not in the major cities, of course, but they dot the countryside.  And they are still being lived in.  They are passed down by each generation to the next and each person recognizes their place in the chain of life and cares for their cottage so that they may pass it on in their turn, to the next generation.  A little something we do not do in this country. Here NEW is what it is all about.  When we build we don’t think of permanence.  We build with an economic expectancy of return for perhaps 40 years and then we think in terms of tearing it down and replacing it. Such a waste. And that kind of thinking produces buildings that have to be torn down because they were never built to last in the first place.  

Our Cottage has walls of stone cut in large blocks most probably by the very person who originally built it. The windows are leaded glass because it was easier to construct and easier to replace a small broken piece of glass.  The door was always heavy oak because it stood up to the test of time and the roof, thatched because it could be repaired and replaced from one’s own fields.  On one side, stairs rising to the attic of the cottage, notice the windows on either end of the attic area, used perhaps for storage over the years or even for a growing family. Climbing roses on three sides of the cottage.  They will flower continuously as long as they are given water and in Ireland it   rains frequently. Think of the thought that went into building this tiny structure and how it has given shelter to the same family for so many years. Nothing inside and the clasp is unimportant to the box. Our price: $172.90. That’s probably a good deal more than what this thatched roof cottage cost to build originally.

Note:  there is a thatched roof home in Encino, California that was originally built for Ben Blue, an early comedic actor.  In all of the 25 years that I sold Real Estate it was never on the market and I always wanted to see the interior of it but never could manage it.
I have no idea of who lives there now but I have often wondered who does the repair to their roof and do they keep it wet down because in the fire season it could be a terrible hazard.  It was built, of course, before the building laws became as stringent as they are today, probably in the 1920’s when there really were no laws regarding housing in the San Fernando Valley where Encino is located.

The Quiet Man’s Stone Cottage.  If you have seen the classic film The Quiet Man with John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara then you will recognize this house as one of the cottages used in the film.  You can see how well cared for it is, just look at the detail.  Actually, you can feel all of the detail because it is all done in relief. Every single stone is separately delineated as is all of the thatching. The windows and their shutters are all in relief.  A huge amount of work has gone into this charming box.

On the front corner of the house is a large climbing vine topped with birds done in metal.  Nothing inside the box and the clasp is a key, of course.
Retail: $185.00.  Our price: $166.90.

About our travels in Ireland: There were 6 of us traveling together, all very good friends, fortunately--even when the trip was over. We had a van because of all of the luggage, it was a three week trip, and one of the fellows was really into driving so he was going to do the driving BUT the van did not have an automatic shift so there was a clutch and the gear shift on the floor to deal with. Because the gear shift was on his left it was really quite unfamiliar to him so one of the others sat next to him and he did the shifting of the gears. Jack, the driver, would say, "Shift" and Spike, his assistant, would shift gears. Sometimes that didn't work too well and it wasn't too great for the gears either. You could hear this terrible grinding sound and often we stalled. Well, driving along this very narrow, very winding road on the way to Waterford, there were high hedges on both sides of the road and you couldn't see what was coming towards you. Unfortunately our van took up a bit more than half the road and when you are used to driving on the opposite side of the road it does get a bit hairy. Maybe leafy would be a better word to use here. We ended up climbing a hedge that was about 8 feet tall but we did not hit the oncoming car and he never even stopped to see if we were okay. Poor Jack was beside himself. He had borrowed the van from a business associate of his and wasn't looking forward to returning it with twigs, leaves and scratches everywhere. What made it even worse was, we were laughing so hard, every one taking pot shots at Jack's driving, he wasn't getting any sympathy at all. As I reread what I just wrote, I am laughing and I hope you will see the picture I have tried to draw. It really was an hilarious adventure! And Ireland was wonderful! They march to a different drummer at a completely different pace. Another world, Ireland.

In my Real Estate career I sold some of the most marvelous homes in Southern California, one of which was in The San Fernando Valley in the area now called Woodland Hills, which was, when it was built in the 1920's the only house in the area. It sat on 35 acres of land. It was originally designed and built for the owner of the largest nursery in California. All of the wood in that house was redwood and every piece of it had been milled for that house. It was constructed of 4 by 12's rather than the usual 2 by 4's. It was a veritable fortress. The architecture was Victorian and all of the windows and doors were multiple paned and double hung. The house had all sorts of cut outs and fripperies as exterior trim and the kind of detailing that people loved. It had CHARACTER! It also had a few other things, A Widows Walk on the third floor; those were common in New England particularly in seaport towns, meant for sailing captain's wives to be able to watch for their return. In California, particularly in the Valley there was little reason for something like that but it certainly added to the charm of the house. The Main House, by the way, was more than 5000 square feet, a mansion in those days and there were two guest houses, a pool house, a tennis house and court and the tennis house had a stage and all of the accoutrement necessary to produce plays. Many of the then famous Hollywood stars visited that house and often times put on entertainments if they were weekend guests. I tell you about this because that house had some wonderful old Oak trees and one of them had a treehouse just like this one. When I sold it, it had had two previous owners, the original owner and then actor Robert Culp and his family. My people were the third owners and by then the house was 50 years old. When my people sold it Bobby Gentry bought it, you remember Ode to Billy Joe, don't you? Anyway, all of the owners had multiple children and every one of those kids adored that tree house. One of them loved it so that they did her bedroom as part of the treehouse. Her bed was made from tree trunks, the head and foot boards were limbs of trees. There was a coat rack built in a corner of her room that was a real tree. The house was like something out of a story book. Wonderful, wonderful house.

NOTE: These are Limoges boxes of course but this retired Real Estate Broker could not resist writing a few real estate ads. Forgive my indulgence. Houses ring my bell. - Elayne

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