Saturday Spotlight: Life Behind The Blogger

 Saturday Spotlight: Life Behind the Blogger is a feature done each Saturday that introduces you to a blogger you may already know or a new blogger for you to get to know. This feature gives you a peak into the personal life of the blogger.  Getting to know the special person behind the beautiful blog.

There is so much talent and inspiration in blogland so enjoy getting to know these talented bloggers each Saturday.

Gay from Canterbury Cottage Designs
February 21st

This week I am introducing you to Gay Van Beek from Canterbury Cottage Designs Blog.
I found Gay and fell in love with her beautiful blog and wonderful style not to mention she writes for my favorite magazine Romantic Homes!!!!  Please take a minute and get to know Gay on a more personal level and then check out her beautiful blog.

Thank you Kris for inviting me to be a part of your fabulous Spotlight Series!

Hello, my name is Gay Van Beek and I am the name and face behind 
Canterbury Cottage Designs.  

The cute little furry guy in the photo is Riley, my
ever-faithful companion for the past 12 years,

I've been married to my husband John for almost 27 years and
we have two children - my son Alex is 24 and my daughter Julia is 21.
I am a proud mom and we all have each other's backs, always.

Canterbury Cottage Designs began in 2001 
when I started selling vintage and antique items on eBay.  I loved the "thrill of the hunt" 
and was very passionate about the quality and type of antiques that I offered
to my customers.  I sold for about 9-10 years and can honestly say it was
a wonderful experience and I loved every minute of it.  I made so many friends 
and mentors- some who are my best friends today.
This was all done "back in the day" as they say, before blogs, Instagram,
Twitter, and Pinterest.  I am not sure how we all survived!

I decided to take off the next few years so that I could be more
involved with volunteering at school while my kids were in
High School.  After they graduated I wanted to get back into
the business - but in that small span of time so many things
had changed.  The electronic world had exploded - but all for the better. 
It was time to learn the ropes and catch up with
the rest of the world.  

I wanted to keep the same name I had began with for two reasons;
I liked it, and it was unique.  I researched the world of blogging 
and, with the encouragement of my family and friends, 
decided to take the plunge and start my blog in September 2014.  

Shortly thereafter I was offered a wonderful opportunity - 
 to write for Romantic Homes Magazine.  
My column is called "Details" - please check it out if you get a chance.

Those are my pink wellies on the cover of the March issue. 

My aesthetic is simple and clean - not too fussy and not too trendy. 
I do love an all-white decor but I also love color and try to incorporate it 
in my home through accessories and flowers.

One thing most people do not know about me is that I am an absolute
health-fanatic.  I love cooking and I read and research food blogs just as much as I 
read design blogs.  I try to incorporate new dishes into my diet each week
and have a huge notebook book full of tried and true tested recipes.  I firmly
believe that our health and well-being is based on what we put in
our bodies and how much we move every day.  

{this is my very popular Fall Detox Salad}

Thanks again Kris for this wonderful opportunity.

Thank you Gay for letting us know more about you.  Please hop over to check out Gay's beautiful blog.
Have a great week end.


  1. I'll be checking out that blog now. That salad looks fabulous!! Thanks for sharing!

  2. So great to meet Gay and I love that March cover, I want those pink wellies!

  3. Well, I can see why you fell in love with her blog and style. I love her home, her style and those pink wellies!

  4. Her blog is beautiful--thanks for sharing! :)

  5. Wonderful post and look at Gay's family and to know a bit more about her. Thanks, Kris. xo Diana

  6. Kris I just love to have the opportunity to get to know different bloggers. Gay seems like a wonderful lady and I really enjoy her work in Romantic Homes, it's nice to pin a face to the writer. Thanx, Jo

  7. Thanks, Kris, and have a great weekend.

  8. A beautifully refreshing blogger, loved the R/H issue with her Pink Wellies on the cover. Like Gay I too was right in there on the big ebay movement selling in the latest part of the 90's until about 2009 when the market in Selling on eBay took a big turn. Chandeliers were something that demanded big and always on the watch for the next hot ebay item In The selling of chic and shabby.
    Kris blogging has créated so many outlets in creativity, sharing ones next great find, and connecting with like interest with beautiful ladies that become a recognized name we call friends.
    It's nothing short of Gay becoming a new friend while sharing the grace and beauty she so creates.
    Beautiful spotlight guest.

    Kris, I am keeping a watchful eye on your transformation of your dinning room pieces you aquired back. :)

    Beautiful weekend to you.

  9. So nice to meet Gay. How lovely! I have never heard of that magazine, but I'm going to check it out!

  10. I can't wait to check out her blog!
    Thanks for sharing,
    Amy Jo

  11. Happy Saturday Kris,
    It's snowing today in Philly and we've been working on a few projects so I'm arriving late to one of my favorite regular Saturday posts. Well you had me at her name Gay, it's my sister-in-laws name. Such a wonderful introduction to a fascinating woman. Will certainly enjoy her blog and all the beauty she creates.
    Sending love,

  12. Romantic Homes happens to be one of my favorites! So nice to meet Gay!

  13. Thanks so much for introducing us to Gay. I'm excited to head over to her blog and see more. Love this magazine, I don't see it in Ireland but always pick up a copy while in the U.S.

  14. Great choice Kris. I will be going over and leaving a comment on Gay's blog.

  15. Good read and I will check out her blog!

  16. Thanks for sharing Gay with us Kris. Her blog looks beautiful and I'm so impressed she's only been blogging since September and already got a magazine feature. Kudos to her!

  17. Thanks, Kris. I have been following Gay for awhile now and enjoy her beautiful blog. Thank you for sharing her life with us..Happy Sunday..Judy

  18. I' ll check out her blog!

  19. her blog is so pretty! thanks for sharing gay with us, kris!

  20. Kris, I was unfamiliar with this blog. What an adorable little dog, Riley. He looks like a poodle, and I agree he's perfect down to her favorite color.

  21. Thanks for the introduction to Gay and her blog, Kris. She has a beautiful family and cute pup. Love those pink wellies! Writing for a magazine like Romantic Homes would be a dream come true. Go Gay! I'm off to check out her blog. xxx ~ Nancy

  22. Kris, I love that you do this series because it introduces us to wonderful bloggers that we may not have heard of. Gay is new to me and I look forward to visiting her blog. That detox salad looks amazing!

  23. Just catching up on posts I have missed. Gay is such a lovely person that I have connected with through Instagram. But it is so nice to learn a little bit more about her. I love her fur baby seeing him on IG! And we just got to say good bye to her son who has moved to Korea to teach English! I will go visit blog. Thank you Kris for sharing.