march madness

Well, since my Disney Coma I’ve been skitzing out on posting anything. First of all, winter is very uninspiring to me personally, and I don’t really ever want to spread my negativity or bad mood on this blog. You’re welcome. We finally got away to celebrate both 40th b-days (a year later because of last year’s broken arm mishap), and our upcoming 15 year wedding anniversary! Paradise was nice while it lasted…

But, eventually, you have to come home and get through the rest of the winter…so I found a new hobby..image

That’s where we are at. Things are looking up in the Northeast, thanks to that groundhog who didn’t see his shadow. Thanks Phil! So with warmer weather ahead, I always get inspired to tear things apart, make some good messes and create again.

Ya know when you go to Target and buy a can of gold metallic paint just because, and then 4 months later decide it’s time to use it somewhere? Oh, that’s just me? huh.

So that can of paint chose the inside of the front door to live. The white door was starting to get really dirty and I knew that it needed tending to, so instead of touching it up like  normal person would do, I went ahead and painted it gold. Now, I’m not completely random as I do have “some” experience with color stories etc…

I wanted to bring together all the warmth surrounding the white door. With the dark hardwood floor,  mustard walls in the dining room and the gold touches in the surrounding artwork, curtains and rug, gold seemed to be a good option. And, hey, I already had the paint! Here’s the progression..imageimageimageimageimage

Three coats and some touch up later…image

Feeling accomplished and happy to have used the paint finally.

Moving on…Of course I went to the flower show again this year and was so happy to be with my family girl squad and to be among all the beautiful exhibits.

And of course I had to purchase some succulents for my mantle. They are so cute and easy to take care of. I’m still loving the green groupings for a Spring mantle look. Thanks to Terrain for the inspiration. image

Also, I’ve been needing a new spring wreath for some time but haven’t had any new ideas. Thanks to the dried floral booth at the Flower Show I got just what I needed. And instead of the usual Pinterest or FB time suckers during lunch on Monday, I made a big old mess with dried flowers on my family room floor. Here’s what I came up with..(15 minutes total labor).

Sometimes all you need is a little warm weather, a few good spin classes and a night out with the girls to give you a push in the creative direction.

Happy Spring!  xo friends!!image

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Disney Coma

That’s me this week. There is no way to go to Disney World for 7 days and REALLY do Disney with 10 people (6 adults and 4 kids), without returning and morphing into a coma-like, alternate reality state. Like, wait, that’s not real life down there in Orlando? Dammit. Nope it’s not. But if you go into it with vigor, and keep up the stamina for the entire week (therefore resulting in a “happiest place on earth” high), you will not only have a good time but will need to sleep for 14 days after. AND, in real life, with kids, that’s just not possible.

So I go from this:image

To this:image

Trying to keep my inspiration, up while dealing with a slow business week, and getting into routines again, post “holi-daze”. Looking back, it’s been almost a full year since my fall, and recovery which eventually lead to changing my entire life around by choosing to work from home with the family business.  I’ve been through the initiation phase, the working while kids are home for the summer phase, the busy phase and the super duper busy phase. I’ve also enjoyed my first holiday season away from retail. Next phase, a slowwwwwww winter month or 2. Hopefully not too slow. Time to read, learn more about what I’m doing and make a list of goals for the coming year. Please God, for both my husband and my sake, let this pass quickly. Ha! We both aren’t very good with down time.

Anyway, I felt the need to make something pretty after coming back to a non-decorated and sterile house. You see, when I put all the Christmas decor away, I didn’t do ANYTHING to replace it. I like a clean slate in January.

With fresh eyes and some new Moroccan glass purchased while in “Morocco” (Epcot), I thought I’d start with the mantle. There were a few pics I pinned that inspired me to put all the small plants I had currently in the kitchen, on the mantle. To “green” up the Family  Room, like it doubles as a winter greenhouse. I do need to purchase more, probably of the succulent/cactus variety, because as I’ve said before, I kill plants.

Here’s a peak at my happy little January mantle “installation”imageimageimage

some vintage milk glass mixed in with the new Moroccan glass…imageimageimage

You should know that the plant above has survived 6 years now…I’m quite proud.

Hope this gives you a little inspiration to “green” things up in hopes for a quick and painless 2 months of winter…

xo friends!imageimage

 

frozen blooms, thai peanut sauce and the ice storm of ’94,

Some winter traditions; because the roads still look like this:image

But at least we don’t live in Boston. A few states away is close enough.

So, The annual Philadelphia Flower Show. A winter tradition for more than a decade for many reasons.

First of all, flowers mean spring is coming. An enormous convention center wing full of the most beautiful and fresh flowers is sure to lift one’s winter blues, no? Yep. Second, it’s an uber inspirational outing if one is at all visually inclined, loves to decorate, loves to arrange flowers or landscape or just generally loves to see the art and beauty in nature. The showmanship is unreal. Some of these exhibits surely take a ton of money and months to complete.

Every year, the participants keep out doing each other in grandeur and style. I highly recommend. Also, there is the opportunity to spend a ridiculous amount of money that you don’t have on cut flowers, small plants and herbs and some super crafty things that you may not see anywhere else. (All this at a price, because like Disney…you’re already there, and you need it NOW). Here are a few snaps. Unfortunately, I only had my iPhone because of course my camera battery was dead and the charger has disappeared. It’s probably in the basement amongst the Barbie dream house decor being used as a vehicle of some sort, but I digress…

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This year’s theme was Disney movies…and you entered through a gorgeous “art deco theatre” made of flowers

of course there was a Frozen exhibit. I mean come on...

of course there was a Frozen exhibit. I mean come on…the steps are 1000’s of carnations. This pic doesn’t even come close to doing it justice. google it. 

these were chandeliers in the "nightmare before Christmas" display

chandeliers in the “nightmare before Christmas” display

tulips were everywhere..

tulips were everywhere..

chandeliers at the grand entrance

chandeliers at the grand entrance

luminous and over the top "weddng" table

luminous and over the top “wedding” feast table

in the peter pan exhibit, they recreated "never land" complete with a pond and peter's hat hiding in the bushes

in the peter pan exhibit, they recreated “never land” complete with a pond and peter and captain hook’s hats and hook hiding in the bushes

What I did with my “purchases”…

on the bottom left is a cool succulent patch that can lay anywhere from a tray to a wall and just needs to be spritzed

on the bottom left is a cool succulent patch that can lay anywhere from a tray to a wall and just needs to be spritzed

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when I arranged these they reminded me of my wedding bouquet back in december 2001

arranging these reminded me of my wedding bouquet back in december 2001

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"Eloise and Talulah" hobnobbing with the horticultural enthusiasts.

“Eloise and Tallulah” hobnobbing with the horticultural enthusiasts. They had to carry bags for all the brochures they collected.

Time to switch to another winter “tradition”. I like to call this Mrs’ V’s Peanut Pasta. So, back in college, specifically freshman year, my girlfriends and I would occasionally escape campus and travel to each other’s homes (which were relatively close by/ only an hour at the most). The moms would always have a meal and an empty washing machine for us to use. Mrs. V used to make this pasta dish that, to this day is one of my faves and possibly one of the simplest but most flavorful weeknight meals you can make for a family (without peanut allergy’s obviously). Follow along. It’s so simple you may miss something.

Ok, so Mrs. V used scallions and sometimes chicken but you can really throw any veggie in and even switch to shrimp as well.

you'll need: 1lb of pasta, olive oil, 1 onion, 2 cloves of garlic, 1 bottle of preferred thai peanut sauce, and veggies/chicken/shrimp etc..

you’ll need: 1lb of pasta, olive oil, 1 onion, 2 cloves of garlic, 1 bottle of preferred Thai peanut sauce, and veggies/chicken/shrimp etc..ps, it’s March in the northeast, we still are on  frozen veggies. 

boil your pasta and micro steam your veggies a couple mins and get your onions sautéing in the oil.

boil your pasta, micro steam your veggies for a couple minutes, and get your onions sautéing in the oil.

add the veggies and garlic to the onions and oil and sautee some more

add the veggies and garlic to the onions and oil and saute some more, browning a little bit for sweetness

add the boiled and drained pasta

add the boiled and drained pasta and pour in the whole bottle of sauce. you can add some parsley and maybe ginger or spice of choice  (you get the picture)

eat. oh and remember to make this for your starving college age kids and their friends when they come home to do laundry during an ice storm. thanks Mrs V :)

EAT. oh and remember to make this for your starving college age kids and their friends when they come home to do laundry during an ice storm. thanks Mrs V 🙂

There you have it. March 3rd and it’s coming in like a lion. Still winter. Keep those traditions going, it’s what gets us through the “inside” months. It only gets warmer from here.

XO friends!!

rest in peace my sweet maggie. there will be plenty of warm sunshine in doggie heaven for you. xo

rest in peace my sweet Maggie. there will be plenty of warm sunshine in doggie heaven for you. We love you. 

105 days till Memorial Day

and 11 days till 40.

Random thoughts tonight. Ready?image

I’ve been obsessing over Breakfast At Tiffany’s lately (again) and I need to carve out some time to watch it this weekend. So many great lines, scenes, life lessons in there. A real good winter sunday movie. You think it’s all light and quirky but the moody sneaks up on you and makes you think. Kind of like a grey winter day.

Also on my snuggle up movie list in no particular order:

When Harry Met Sally, Funny Girl, Rebel Without a Cause, Bonnie and Clyde, Singles, High Fidelity, For the Love of the Game, Dead Poets Society, Good Will Hunting, Love Actually, Stealing Home, Peggy Sue Got Married, Pretty Woman, The Breakfast Club, Almost Famous, The Great Gatsby (both the Robert Redford one and The Leo DiCaprio one), and Great Expectations (with Ethan Hawke and Gwyneth Paltrow) happy viewing…

The fake Blizzard of 2015 came and went this week making for some real waste of time and some fun too. Sometimes I like it when the weather makes us stop. (even when it’s not real weather, but the weather people apologized and I forgive them) For starters, I made some boulanaise, and opened up a favorite bottle of red:

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Kids had great time playing in the whopping 3 inches. (I know, last year we were crying for it to stop; this year we’re all “can we please get a blizzard already? I got new boots!”)image

But you see like mother like daughter..we’re soooo not winter people.

spent.

spent.

I did a little face maintenance this week as well. I’m now addicted to all things Glamglow. http://www.glamglowmud.com

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These are just a few samples. I think I may have joined the party a little late on this one as I am usually up on the latest skin care phenom, BUT good LORD, the youth mud is something you must try. There is a warning on the label that it “tingles”. Well, I must harbor a lot of toxins because tingle was an understatement but in a good way. After I washed it off my skin was so soft and sort of dare I say, glowing. I mean, as much as it can in January in the North East. The eye cream is equally as delightful. As I’ve said before…eye cream, every day people. Go get it.

mid-tingle

mid-tingle

Let’s just say it’s been a slowdown this week.

It won’t be slow for long, in fact I think every weekend is booked from now until Memorial Day and the sports are about to start up again too. I can appreciate the slow snow days and make the most of them but my heart, my heart belongs to the summer. I’m also in a major fashion rut at the moment but today managed to pull out a little sass. The heels help. They always do. Also, I think I get more done when I’m wearing heels, whether they’re leopard or not 😉image

OOH and how are these for a case of the “mean reds”?

Fall 2015 Dior. Yes Please.

xo friends!

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January Mood Swings

Not in such an excellent mood tonight. Back to work tomorrow. Well, I would have been in a better mood had I not spent the last 5 days sick as a dog. And completely in denial about being sick as a dog for the first 3 days of being sick. So I did too much. So it goes. Doesn’t matter, if I was at work I probably wouldn’t have stayed at home anyway.

So I thought I’d just jot down some happy thoughts to try to get me out of this funk (by 5am tomorrow) so I can start my work year off with a good attitude. Hey, I always said this blog would be honest right? Let’s see If I can happy myself up a bit in the next few paragraphs. Warning: this post will be random . No real theme here. A couple of mini ones…

First: I did some semi crafty things in the past 12 days that made me smile.  The disclaimer here is that I tend not to “craft”. I decorate, rearrange, create, but no crafting skills. I’m way too impatient and don’t like sticky messes. Also, as I’ve said before Pinterest is the devil. I love it but I can not with the crafts.

“craft” #1: My new years eve kids selfie station.

Minimal work, some dollar store glitter, garland and props but it did the trick. Kids made it work, PJ’s and all.

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“craft” #2 my first ceramic attempt

So you go to these places and the possibilities are endless. It seems simple, you choose something and paint it. Well.

Do you choose something to give as a gift and make it super personalized and special? Do you choose something decorative for your home and hope that it comes out looking like more than a kid’s craft? Do you choose something practical that may be of some use and still be pretty to look at? OR do you (NO) do as the lady working there says and “ooh take a look at our inspiration board on Pinterest!” Alice, you will never come out of that rabbit hole before they close the studio.

I choose practical. A simple berry bowl. It’s square so it’s not tricky. I picked a bright orange and was assured that after it was fired up it would be bright orange. I haven’t picked it up yet so we shall see…..but I kind of like the way it turned out. Simple, but quirky.

mmm only 5 months till Jersey Strawberries…

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I received a really sweet and fun gift to kick off the “year of 40” the other day that I thought I’d share because it was truly personal, crafty, creative and thoughtful and I wish I would have thought of it first. Because, I will be trying to fill the fun and thoughtful 40-year-old gifts SEVERAL times this year. (you all know who you are).

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I want to do a post on gift giving soon, I need to collect more thoughts and pics on what I’m getting at and how to really know what the receiver may want. I’ve been working on gift giving for a while. I think I’m getting pretty good at it. It’s not about the amount spent. It’s certainly not about what YOU may like. It’s about the other person.  These were 2 that really made me smile because I get to look at them everyday on my desk and smile when I think of the giver and how they know me so well. I still have to get an amazing frame for the print but all those things are my favorites. And I love the visual reminder.

DSC_0045 DSC_0041 DSC_0040

Finally this was a shot from today, late afternoon. My little “Eloise” reading me her Fancy Nancy book under the twinkling lights while I went down that rabbit hole I like to call Pinterest.image

Happy Monday. I feel much better now.