Thursday, March 1, 2012


Hello, friends (errr....friend?....anyone still there?).  I don't know about you, but with the first glimpse of spring I turn a mental corner.  Everything feels happy and hopeful.  I feel motivated.  I start making plans.  And picking up some spring blooms for inside always feels like it speeds the arrival of the new season. 

For the last two years forsythia branches have been my absolute favorite.  Trader Joe's always seems to have them and they look just like bare branches when you pick them up, but they evetually bloom those vibrant yellow flowers and then even start to sprout leaves.  It's just what I need to get me through the last few days of winter dreariness. 

Of course, some potted tulips never hurt the situation either!

With fresh motivation in hand I'm hoping to freshen things up around here, too, so stay tuned.  Not sure what that means just yet, but we'll see!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Favorite. Find. Ever.

IMG_2061 Found this for $1 at an estate sale with my girlfriends a couple weeks ago. It was just lying in an empty garage with a dozen or so other books. I almost jumped for joy when I found it. After watching Julie and Julia, who wouldn't want a copy? It's a 1966 printing, and it a little worn, which makes it just about perfect. Nothing I love more than finding a treasure like this! We may or may not have been fearing for our lives as four young (we're still young right?), pretty girls in a house alone with an apparently drunk man and his dog, but I wasn't leaving without this book! Haha! {P.S. We did some major thrifting as well; separate post forthcoming on that...and how much I love Goodwill!} IMG_2064 IMG_2069 IMG_2068 IMG_2067

Friday, April 1, 2011

Firehouse Recipes: Pork Medallions over Crusty Bread

My sister is a firefighter and most often cooks the meal for her shift.  She sent this one to me recently and it's too good and easy not to share!  Got some marinating in the fridge as we speak...

Happy weekend!


2 yellow onions
1 stick of butter
1 1/2 cup soy sauce
1 1/2 cup water
1 cup brown sugar
3 teaspoons dry ground mustard
3 teaspoons garlic powder
pork tenderloin (she uses 2 1/2 lbs at the station - you can buy a 2-pack at Costco)
Crusty bread....or buns.

Coarsely chop onions and saute in butter.  While onions and butter are in skillet turn heat off and add soy sauce, water, brown sugar, mustard, garlic powder. Place tenderloin(s) in a 9x13 glass dish and pour the warm marinade over the meat. let sit in fridge for 2 hours. When ready, place in oven at 375. bake for 35 min and then take dish out to cut pork into 1/2 in medallions. Place back into the oven for 10 minutes. Serve over crusty bread...... ENJOY!!!..

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Kitchen Preview

Picnik collage

Thanks to my amazing sister, my kitchen is now a lovely shade of Rainwater (by Sherwin Williams).  I know it's hard to see the color in these pictures, but I am loving the change!  It's definitely an adjustment, the kitchen was a nice, sunny (but not too bright) yellow previously, and it kept things nice and light.  This is definitley more muted, but a very soothing and welcomed change.

What happened to Sea Glass, you may ask?  Well, my sister, being the professional that she is (seriously, she has her own painting business - Simple Start, Inc.), picked up the chip (that I had picked out ONLINE, without seeing it in person), proceeded to call me and say something like, "Umm, you do not want this color."  Really?  It's one of Martha's top 12 favorite colors!  Too bright she thought, and she was right.  When she showed me the actual chip in person, I thanked her profusely for helping me avert another aqua-blue disaster (and my apologies to my friend Jamie, who graciously helped me paint that first infamous blue, and who has sworn she will never paint for me again.  :-)).

She actually chose this color instead, based on a description of what I wanted, and it was a winner!  She freshened up the trim (who am I kidding - it had never been painted, so "freshening" is a major understatement!), did all the set up, furniture moving and clean up, too. 

The problem now becomes that once I paint something, a snowball effect ensues and everything else surrounding becomes so much less appealing.  Hmmmm....patience, patience..for now I will enjoy my new blueish/greyish/greenish kitchen!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Kitchen Paint Color

I have a major itch to make some changes around here, starting with the walls.  I'm thinking of this color for my kitchen.  I really want to try an aqua-y blue, but my first attempt was disaster - too bright and didn't work with the other colors in the house. 

This is a Martha Stewart color called "Sea Glass."  What do you think?  Too green?  Too bold?  Just right?  Painting starts Monday, so fingers crossed!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Latte Bowl Cupcakes

March 9, 2011

Tonight I was making some cupcakes and had just enough batter left over to fill my mini latte bowls.  After realizing they don't really sit on an oven rack very well, I set them in a glass pie dish and then put them in the oven and baked them for the regular time.  Worked like a charm!  And so, so cute.  Now I need to buy some more latte bowls......

Saturday, February 5, 2011

A little bit of happy.


So, there's an Anthropologie two blocks from my office.  Right.  It's not a good situation.  Anyhoo...I am normally not in the office on Fridays, but given the weather this week, I needed to go in and do some catching up.  And after being cooped up for several days, some fresh air was in order at lunch.  Can you guess where I ended up?  Right again.

I've seen the gorgeous latte bowls all around and would love to have a giant stack of those, but I picked up these mini-versions for the time being.  I fell in love with the color and thought they might be good snack bowls for my little ones.  Plus, they are a steal at $2.50.  When I was checking out, the lady told me people bake cupcakes in them?  How adorable would that be!?  But with all my googling skills, I can't find anything of the sort.  So, if you come across something or have used them for cupcakes yourself, please do share!  I guess it can't be that hard, right?  Put some batter in there and bake them?  I'll let you know how it goes.

And, on a whim, I picked up this bracelet.  It was on sale for $10, down from $40 or $50 or some crazy amount I would never pay for a bracelet.  But, it was Friday, I was feeling good, came with a pretty bag.

Cute, right?  I don't have good wrists for bracelets, but ten bucks!


Monday, January 24, 2011

Bookmarks: Part I

I need something to get me motivated over here again, so I thought I'd share some things I've bookmarked recently (or not so recently) in hopes that I can get back in the saddle!

My entryway is in SERIOUS need of updating.  It's currently a pale green (I know, right?) and I'm thinking of something in the grey family for wall color.  It was love at first sight when I saw this image on Isabella & Max last week.  LOVE the grey with the white trim, and that stencil!  I've seen Whitewall stencils here and there, but haven't quite worked up the nerve (or time...or energy) to try one.  But I think the entryway could be a good spot to make a statement.

She even has her tutorial here.  Now all I need is some spare time....and a little courage!

Monday, January 10, 2011

So many good books, so little time.....

January 10, 2011

Looking at this stack of books {which have been accumulating next to the couch for some time now} makes me want to hole up in this house for about a week and read / clean / organize / redecorate and otherwise get some stuff done around here! 

The new year is off and running, and I have a fresh dose of motivation.  Maybe this giant stack of books will help me.  If nothing else, they will be good reading.

Except that one on the bottom.  That's not mine.  No way.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Favorite Holiday Finds

So, I'm gonna go ahead and pretend it hasn't been several months since my last post (and that my sidebar doesn't still say "Loving Spring") and dive right in.

I thought I'd share a few of my favorite holdiay finds this year.  I must say, I'm feeling OK about this Christmas season.  Shopping wise, I'm a little ahead of where I usually am at this point (which is traditionally NOWHERE).  And I feel like I have a decent plan for everything else, along with a timeline for execution.  Note Exhibit A:


Now, the plan is not complete, and I've already switched today and tomorrow's plans because I didn't feel like cleaning tonight.  You'll see that I've also had some...uh...input from others in this house.  But that makes me feel even better about it.  Have to plan for fun and relaxation, too! (And somewhere on the list I should add, "touch up the white trim on the chalkboard door!")

OK, back to the favorites.  First up, love these red wire baskets I found at the dollar store.  I'm thinking of using them to assemble some hot cocoa gifts using this recipe and a couple of cute mugs, maybe some marshmallows.  I literally scooped up every last one at my local store.  A lady stopped me to ask where I found them.  I directed her to the back corner of the store with a gentle warning, "I have to tell you, I took a lot of them!"  I didn't have the heart to tell her I took them ALL.  And then I proceeded quickly to the checkout. 


And while we are on the topic of the dollar store, I also couldn't resist these cardboard star decorations.   Picked up three (and had to stop myself from picking up more).


We all know you can't give gifts without ribbon!  Found this red ribbon guessed it....the dollar store (there's a theme here) and then found the black and white ribbon at Costco.  They (Costco) had tons of beautiful fabric ribbon in 50 yard spools for $6.99.  50 Yards! (They also had 400 sheet packs of tissue for less than $6; I picked up a pack of that, too, and am hoping to execute my vision this year of filling the house with these on Christmas morning.)



The dollar store isn't the only place where I can't stop myself.  The $1 Spot at Target elicits a similar bulk-buying response.  Found these take-out boxes I plan to use for goodies...particularly my sister-in-law's mother-in-law's carmels.  I think that perhaps robin's egg blue ribbon embellishment will be in order.


And I picked up some of these, thinking that they could be used for my kindergartner's classmates (but I need ideas for contents...any suggestions?).


Last, but certainly not least, my friend Joe delivers again.  Picked up these goodies tonight....giant gingerbread men to decorate ($3.99 each), sugar cookie kit with mix, cutters, icing and sugars ($3.99), delicious goodies I will bring to the office tomorrow in lieu of baking anything tonight, and a new green tea to try.




I hope you are enjoying your holiday season.  I'd love to hear about some of your favorite finds!  Do tell.