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Summer Drive By: Ahhh…back to my old tricks!

by | Jul 13, 2010 | Decorating Inspiration, drive bys, Gardens & Outdoor Rooms

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Summer Drive By: Ahhh...back to my old tricks!Summer Drive By: Ahhh...back to my old tricks!

For old time’s sake and because I have a serious addiction, I went on a little drive by while I was in Portland last week! Ahhhhh it has been way too long! I started out with a quick drive through of my old old old (i.e. several houses ago) neighborhood, First Addition in Lake Oswego. Found a couple of houses I drooled over, so let’s take a look!

I had to drive by the adorable house above twice because silly impatient cars kept coming up behind me trying to rush me. I shouted at them (under my breath from inside my car) to let them know I had important business to attend to (I reeeaaallly need a bumper sticker that says I brake for charming houses so they’d know to not mess with me) but they just kept on honking. So I went around the block and tried again.

Summer Drive By: Ahhh...back to my old tricks!

Summer Drive By: Ahhh...back to my old tricks!

I love all the little details that make this house special, from the scalloped siding, to the arched porch cover (with the dark wood trim under the porch!) to the windows and picket fence. So much cuteness!
Summer Drive By: Ahhh...back to my old tricks!

That is the sweetest sign for a picket fence.

Summer Drive By: Ahhh...back to my old tricks!

And I am completely smitten lately with white houses and American flags. So patriotic. Love the chairs too.

Summer Drive By: Ahhh...back to my old tricks!

This house had me at the sunroom. Look at that room, and the WINDOWS!

Summer Drive By: Ahhh...back to my old tricks!

I drove around the side of it and it was fabulous from that angle too … love the porch!

Summer Drive By: Ahhh...back to my old tricks!

Let’s zooooom in for a close up.

Summer Drive By: Ahhh...back to my old tricks!

Such a picturesque place. I love it! Sigh.

Then, I moved on to my old old neighborhood, Eastmoreland, for a mini-drive by. I actually had to do this second neighborhood drive by in two parts, the first time it was too sunny and the trees made shadows everywhere and then when I came back, it was too dark out. Bad for photos, so I pretty much had to give up. But, it is what it is. And a drive by is always fun no matter what. Some of these houses we’ve gawked at before!

Summer Drive By: Ahhh...back to my old tricks!

We looked at this one in a previous drive by. Such a great entry!

Summer Drive By: Ahhh...back to my old tricks!

This is my old house! Well, my old, OLD house. The one from before the last one. It was my second small house experiment, but in this house we tried it out with three kids and an extra one most days. The house (not including the basement) was probably about 1600 square feet. Not the tiniest house ever, but it was chopped up like so many of the old houses are! And with two babies around and two fast approaching teenagers, it was a little crazy in that house.

So many fun memories of trying to fit into that place. I got SUPER creative with organization, though, I’ll tell ya!

Summer Drive By: Ahhh...back to my old tricks!

Love this little house! I’ve shown this house before, but my new photo of it didn’t show it off as well, so I’m reusing my this one. It is just so cute.

Summer Drive By: Ahhh...back to my old tricks!

I am a sucker for little white lights, wreaths, vines, shutters and window boxes. All on one house. Love.

Summer Drive By: Ahhh...back to my old tricks!

Always adore rock and leaded glass, too. Sigh. The sky makes everything look dreary, however. Bummer I don’t live in Portland any more, I can’t just go back for a new shot!

Summer Drive By: Ahhh...back to my old tricks!

I love the black window trim on this house.

Summer Drive By: Ahhh...back to my old tricks!

The double doors and landscaping on this house are so pretty and inviting. I almost invited myself in.

Summer Drive By: Ahhh...back to my old tricks!

For my last little drive by, I drove up into a neighborhood that had a big PRIVATE, MEMBERS ONLY sign (Waverly Country Club). I know, I know…I am normally a law abiding citizen. But when it comes to neighborhoods and my drive bys, I disregard all social rules like respecting the PRIVATE signs. Darn I wish people didn’t have gates. At least this one was open so I could peak a little.

Summer Drive By: Ahhh...back to my old tricks!

When I saw this dreamy fairytale cottage through the trees and behind its fence, my eyes popped out of my head! I drove round and round trying to get closer. I nearly drove right through their gate and ran over three kitties I was so fixated on how ADOR-AH-BLE it was. Don’t worry, the kitties are fine. I fluffed up their fur and they will be good as new (totally kidding, I did NOT run over any kitties).

There was just no way to get a better picture of this house without getting out of the car and scaling the fence — I was in a dress, so I just gave up. I could’ve put my camera up to the gate, but I was a little afraid of their security camera. I’d hate to get on the news for trespassing. Next time I might risk it though. This angle is just a little bit like torture. You know it is cute but you just can’t see enough of it to drool.

Anyway, trust me. It was magical.

Thanks for coming along on another drive by!

Want to re-live some of the oldies but goodies? Find all the drive-bys here!


  1. laney

    …oh what fun!! …love love love the drive -bys…but there is no house to match dragonfly cottage…i know i am NOT suppose to covet…but…

  2. julie

    ❀ Love it. ❀


  3. Heather

    I love your drive-bys. I think most of us do this, we just don’t make it public like you – he he.
    I’m wondering if the house with the overgrown landscape has changed owners. It was so neat and tidy a couple of years ago. Either they’ve moved or fired their gardeners.
    .-= Heather @ what’s happening this week´s last blog ..Since Youve Been Gone =-.

  4. Jess

    Oh I am sooo guilty of the drive by! Love those houses – so cute! I should probably do a collections of the ones around here that cause me to break my neck as I cruise by!
    .-= Jess @ Frugal with a Flourish´s last blog ..Creating Paintings out of Posters =-.

  5. Annelise

    You are so flipping funny, I can only imagine writing like you. You have a great idea for the finer aspects of our homes. Can you do a drive by my house and point out the great and not the things I see that need attention? Ever come to Maryland?
    .-= Annelise´s last blog ..Colorful Storage Options =-.

  6. Christi {Jealous Hands}

    LOVE the drive bys! I do drive bys all the time in our small Southern town, but I’ve never taken pictures. Next time, I’m going to!
    .-= Christi {Jealous Hands}´s last blog ..our 4th of July weekend =-.

  7. Alison Gibbs

    Melissa I think I’d be wiping the drool away for weeks, I’d be like Homer Simpson looking at donuts. These houses are so gorgeous. You have to be the best drive by ‘shooter’ I know. It’s a wonder someone doesn’t call the police on you in case you are checking out a house to rob.!!LOL
    .-= Alison Gibbs´s last blog ..WHITE WEDNESDAY =-.

  8. Melanie

    I will take the second one! Amazing windows and I would LOVE that sunroom. Yum!
    .-= Melanie´s last blog ..Macaroni and Cheese =-.

  9. Imperfect

    I always really enjoy your drive-bys. And I adore the house in that first photo. The flowers, the porch, the flags and the fence – beautiful!
    .-= Imperfect´s last blog ..Contentment is a Funny Thing =-.

  10. Peg

    Oh, your drive-by was such fun!!! :)
    You had me laughing out loud talking about fluffing up the kitties! This sounds so much like what I do– only I had my grown daughter with me on our last adventure and she took the photos while I drove by…let’s see…how do I pretend I don’t know that person with the camera in MY vehicle!!!! :)

  11. Irene

    I love love love that first house. I just may have put a picket fence in the front of our house now.

  12. Irene

    I love love love that first house. I just may have put a picket fence in the front of our house now.
    .-= Irene @ OurUglyHome´s last blog ..Exterior Successes =-.

  13. Vee

    You are the queen of the drive-bys. I actually attempted one on my ocean day because seaside homes are the best. That sis of mine drives like a bat out of well, you know that all those photos were just a mess.

    Loved seeing these photos and I can’t believe that those new homeowners have allowed their shrubs and trees to take over their yard that way. Take your pruning shears with you next time!
    .-= Vee´s last blog ..Christmas in July =-.

    • Melissa

      Yes, Drive Bys are not always easy to accomplish :-) while driving or riding at high speeds :-)

      Their shrubs look like they are thriving — better than dead shrubs!, they probably just got busy and didn’t realize how fast they had grown! Happens to me all the time. I’ll forgive them because I adore their house.

  14. teresa

    What a fun drive that was…thanks for inviting me =)
    I too love Portland….there’s just something about the air/sky/rain that makes all those homes even lovelier .
    .-= teresa´s last blog ..A little before and after- Cottage wood floors- =-.

  15. desiree

    Thanks for the tour. I love that sun room. I have to say I have done the same when a car comes up behind me and I’m not finished looking and dreaming. Glad to hear I’m not the only one who takes a second or third drive-by!
    .-= [email protected]´s last blog ..Looki- I Did It Myself =-.

  16. Phaedra

    It always amazes me how much our tastes are alike! I love all these houses too! The charming white picket fences, wreathes, and adorable details had me nearly drooling in my coffee! : ) Thanks so much for your beautiful inspiring posts! Your blog has enriched my life so much.
    Keep up the great work!
    .-= Phaedra´s last blog ..The Beauty of Books =-.

    • Melissa

      Thank you Phaedra, it is fun for me to find others who enjoy the same things!

  17. Tara

    drive bys are my favorite thing to do.
    if it’s been over a few weeks since i’ve done one, then i dream of getting time by myself to one.

    it’s been a few weeks…and i’m dreaming. and now you’ve done this post…so i have to go do one of my own…

    i’ll post pictures cause i know you’ll appreciate the beauty of a drive by with me.

    happy day…love every single house you captured.

    • Melissa

      let me know when you post it!

  18. Shelly B.

    That was so much fun! I didn’t even realize I do this too….. only mine are walk-bys…. usually out on a walk. :) Great post!

  19. Fiona Sanders

    I LOOOOOOOOVE drive bys! I love all the architechural details that make a place special.

    I make D do the driving though so I can jump out and take the pics. He is a willing accomplice!! :o)

    .-= Fiona Sanders´s last blog ..Coming Home…… =-.

  20. Susie

    Ohhh, what lovely homes…this is one of my hubby and my favorite things to do…yes, we have become…SUNDAY DRIVERS! But, it is such a simple pleasure. Long, slow, lazy drives…I find it relaxing, inspiring and dare I say, a little romantic.
    Thank you for taking us on your little drive…

    Have a wonderful day,
    .-= Susie´s last blog ..Love -amp Sharing =-.

  21. Arlene

    That day looks nearly perfect!

  22. Christy

    I love your drive-by’s! I live in suburban central Fl (read BORING stucco cookie cutter homes) where there aren’t many opportunities for interesting drive-by’s. My heart broke when I saw that once perfect yard all overgrown and in a shambles. It’s amazing how much it detracts from the appeal of the home. :(

  23. Karen


    I LOVE the house with the sunroom, when can I move in (which may be difficult since I live in Irvine and the house is in Portland. I also love the front of your old house. Very charming and I’ll be it was wonderful on the inside too! Thanks for risking life, limb and kitties for us.
    .-= Karen´s last blog ..Atriums- Conversation Pits and other tract house trends =-.

  24. Lesley

    I love driving around to look at houses. When I was dating my husband, he lived near an amazing, historic neighborhood and I would drive very slowly through it and point out all the things I loved about the houses. It drove him and the others on the road crazy!
    .-= Lesley @ TheDesignFile´s last blog ..Renaissance lobby inspires modern design =-.

  25. gretchen

    I don’t live so far away from those lovely houses…. and am lucky my own sweet little house is very much like those you pictured. It’s on the market now, as I’m moving to a larger, older house across the river and can’t wait to get there!
    ….but packing is just so not fun!

  26. Jocelyn Stott

    I live right near this area and I too do drive-bys all of the time. It is so beautiful there. I wish every day I could buy a house here, but most of them are now in the upper 800s – 1mil. But, they are stunning.
    .-= Jocelyn Stott´s last blog ..Finally- =-.

  27. The Tiny Homestead

    thanks for sharing these charming houses. I just love to look at all their pretty details. funny how you mentioned the lighting being dreary, it seemed normal to me. but, then it’s almost always dreary here in pittsburgh.

    I sent a picture of my house to a sweet blogger who does design consultations. She sent it back to me with a couple suggestions and it looked so great! When I looked closer I realized half the reason it looked so good was because she blued up my sky and greened up my grass. Ha! So my house is rarely shown in the best light.
    .-= The Tiny Homestead´s last blog ..Inspired by patchwork =-.

    • Melissa

      That is so funny, I’ve seen that too. They will doctor up the interior too so much that it looks DREAMY! Lights are on, every thing looks surreal! Alas, our homes don’t look that good in real life :-)

  28. jenjen

    All I can say is — WOW! That first house is simply perfect. I loved looking at those houses. I do that too — drive around and look at homes. I grew up in a brick tutor with a round door and I think houses like that are so beautiful and have so much character. I would love to move into an old home someday. Thanks for the beautiful pictures!


  29. Barbara (WA)

    Fabulous !! LOVE drive-bys.

  30. Sherry

    All of the homes are wonderful but my favorite is the first photo. I love a white house with shingles. There is something very Nantucket looking about this home.
    xo, Sherry
    .-= Sherry @ No Minimalist Here´s last blog ..Home Tour =-.

  31. Geo

    Very pretty houses! Just one question though:

    Portland, Oregon or Portland, Maine?


  32. Debbie

    I love your drive by house tours. I’m so glad you indulged yourself for our sake; lol. I always imagined having a white picket fence around my house; never did though. I loved each one of the houses that caught your eye.

    Blessings and love,
    .-= Debbie´s last blog ..Faithful Bloggers Psalm 23 =-.

  33. Mary Joy

    We drove by a sweet little house the other day that has the most wonderful inviting front porch with comfy chairs and an incredible porch swing!!! Ahhhh….I just wanted to walk up the front walk and make myself at home….hehehehehe…I didn’t though…my hubby was with me. LOL
    .-= Mary Joy @ Snapshots from my Heart & Home´s last blog ..God has brought me so fara new mission for Snapshots =-.

  34. Lindsey

    oooh, beautiful homes! I so love drive-by home tours, too! :) I hate driving because I can’t take the time to look at homes, luckily my husband loves to drive so I can ogle the homes and get ideas.

  35. LuxuriousLife

    I love driving by and looking at houses. This time I didn’t have to get in the car, thanks!! Those houses are great!!
    .-= LuxuriousLife´s last blog ..Write It Down- Make It Happen =-.

  36. CLA


    How funny is that! I’m the owner of the first white home in First Addition and my wife and I were on your site a few months ago looking. I accidentally pulled it back up yesterday and there is my home on the front of your website. How cool is that! We love living in First Addition and custom built the home about 3 years ago. Wr really wanted it to fit the historic nature of the neighborhood. I am a real estate broker and we keep getting unsolicited offers on it. If the price is right we may just sell and move to the beach! Who knows. Thanks for the great photos:-)

    • Melissa

      That is very cool! Your house is so charming, you did a fabulous job! I used to live in First Addition too and LOVED it! Thanks for your comment!

  37. Linda

    I loved reading your post about drive-bys! I thought I was the only person who did this! I love driving by my favorites, and will choose routes based on which houses are where. And seeing my favorites just soothes something inside. Now I know that I am not alone in my obsession–and you are braver than I am–you took pictures! Thank you for sharing.
    .-= Linda´s last blog ..Group Writing Practice =-.

  38. sweet cottage dreams

    oh hi there, sweet melissa! i have been thinking of you lately and said to myself, “i must navigate my mouse to your house” and voila! i am so happy i did as i totally enjoy your drivebys! i love your “little” house – too cute!! these are all so fabulous! we love the same things- all of the cute and charming doo-dads that make these cottages all the more special and personalized. hey, navigate your mouse over to my house to see the sweet farmhouse we found. it is in eureka, california – far, far, far from home, but oh-s0-sweet! infact, i will be doing a post on “walk-bys” here soon of some victorian homes and gardens we found on our vacation.

    thanks for all of the fun!
    oh, btw, you really need to get that bumper sticker! you may have to make some extra for us to buy!! ;) ……i despise impatient drivers! don’t they know anything????!!!


  39. Beth

    Spent mychildhood doing drive-bys with my parents–they loved to “go for a drive” through the nicer neighborhoods, just to look at houses. Hadn’t thought of that in a long time–probably where my house/design obsession started!
    We live in a house that used to be owned by a pro athlete, and get many drive-by’s/ “secret” photographers. We always see them. The kids say: someone’s taking a picture of the house again!

    • Melissa

      Ha, that is funny. When I was in high school we lived in a really cool old house that had water on three sides of it. One side was a canal, and we always had boaters slowly going by waving at us in our dining room! I know how it feels to see people lurking outside! LOL! Now I’m the lurker :-)

  40. Sarah

    I totally understand where you are coming from on this one. There’s a few houses I drive by each day on the way to work, and I think – I wonder if they have a blog because I would LOVE to see the inside of their house! :)
    .-= Sarah @ the Ooey Gooey Daily News´s last blog ..Wedding Gifts Poll =-.

  41. Irene

    i love your drive bys!

  42. Kathleen

    I love the houses you photographed, makes me want to move out there! Great blog
    .-= Kathleen´s last blog ..Definition of Humble =-.

  43. clarice

    I see we both love storybook homes ;-) Gosh I am ready to move to Portland, what sweet houses. Clarice
    .-= clarice´s last blog ..Gypsy Tent =-.

  44. Elisha

    Oh my gosh! I laughed out loud at your comment above regarding people driving up behind you while you’re gawking at a great house! I have had the same experience more times than I can count. Too funny. So glad I’m not alone in my “checking out great houses” obsession. Thanks for sharing.


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