Sunday, August 30, 2009

Dinner Party Pictures

Hi Everyone,
The dinner party was a success. We laughed a lot and played yard games, and ate way too much. Some of you asked for pictures, I didn't take any of the people just the food. It was a beautiful day and a good time was had by all.
It was hard with the busyness of preparing the food to get photos but here is what I did have. IT WAS A DELICIOUS MEAL (if I do say so myself) and because I don't know how to make just a little bit of food, we will be enjoying it for the next few days. (hooray for me no cooking :) The tiramisu was absolutely divine but extremely expensive to make. Good thing the business was paying for it :)) LOL

Friday, August 28, 2009

Dinner Party

Decorating is not the only aspect of a making a house a home. It also has a lot to do with how others feel upon entering your home. Are they instantly put at ease or do they feel they have entered a place where they are on pins and needles. When entertaining it is important to provide an environment that "feels" good to your guests. Greet them warmly, offer them a seat or a cool drink. Make them feel as if they are most important to you at this moment. Make them feel at HOME.
I love to entertain. The more the merrier is always my motto. I enjoy every phase of it. From the time of planning it to the event itself and during it as well. From small things like having a friend over for coffee and scones to a full fledged dinner party. I love it all!
I guess this post stems from the last few weeks in my life. I spent last weekend decorating and being the wedding coordinator for a daughter of a good friend. It was a delightful weekend,. We had eight young adults that were here for the wedding staying at our home and I so enjoyed pampering and "mothering" them. They all commented on how they felt like one of our own. That comment to me, first off made me feel good but it also made me realize that that is how everyone who enters our home should be made to feel.
We are having a dinner party for my hubby's employees this weekend. I am so excited to pamper them and let them know they are appreciated. Looking forward to a time of relaxing with them in a non work setting and making them feel special.
It should be a fun time.
Thought you might like to see the menu.

Pesto coated Salmon on the barby
Italian herb chicken (also on the BBQ)
Roasted Red Potatoes
Spinach salad with red wine vinegarette
Fresh fruit salad
Sourdough Garlic Bread
For dessert: Tiramisu (yes,I am attempting to make this)

I am doing all of this from scratch so I suppose I should quit blogging and start cooking. Remember to treat guests as you want to be treated and your gathering will be a success. Have a wonderful weekend everyone!
A little disclaimer: The picture is not my table. wish it was tho :) I just thought it was a pretty picture.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Defining your Decorating Style

When it comes to defining your taste and style in decorating, I have found most people don't know where to begin.
I often meet people who want to make a change or redo a room but don't really know what to do first. I have heard women say "I know what I don't like but I am not sure what I really want". If this sounds like you, I can help. My advice for clients I meet is simple. Start a notebook filled with magazine pages. Not just any magazine page mind you, specific pages. Gather up your favorite decorating magazines, and as you flip through them tear out pages that have things on them you like. Even if there is only one item on the page that grabs you tear it out anyway. (I know that destroying a magazine is going to be hard for some of you, but bear with me it is so worth it). It could be a whole room on a page you like, or just the sofa on another page, perhaps there is a vase, or a painted chest you love. Work on this over the course of a few weeks, don't do it all in one day. Doing it over the course of a few weeks will be a more realistic picture of your style verses doing it all in one day where your mood that particular day may sway you one way or another. You can also take pictures of vignettes in your favorite decorating shops. Always ask permission first prior to snapping pictures in retail stores. Most retailers don't mind, but I have run into a few that would rather you don't. During the course of this project you will begin to see a common theme occur. For example, you may notice that almost every page you picked had brown walls, with white trim work. It would be safe to assume that you would then be drawn to that scheme. Maybe you picked pictures that contained lots of antique furniture or pictures with wood floors in them. Maybe you are drawn to rooms with draperies and lots of pillows etc.
You will begin to narrow down your likes and dislikes and as you go through your notebook again and again you will definatly begin to see your unique style. I have done this process many times over the years. It always amazes me how many times what I think I might like to do, changes by what I see in the pictures I find. For years I thought that when I remodel my kitchen I wanted warm cherry cabinets. As I began the process of tearing out pictures of kitchens I loved every single kitchen I pulled had antique ivory cabinets. I would not have realized this without the process and could have been disappointed with the result of cherry cabinets. See where I am going with this? It really does help you to define your style.
If you are still having trouble, I do offer online decorating services, leave me a comment and I will get back to you with details and pricing.
You can see how this process will help you figure out what it is you really like, helping you create a home you'll love coming home to.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Extra Storage

We are a nation of lots of "stuff". With lots of stuff comes the need for extra storage. I have an obsession for anything that is both pretty and functional. Who ever said we had to store everything in plastic tubs and storage bins anyway? There are many choices to keep things organized and easy to get to. There are baskets and trunks that are beautiful additions to any room. You can store extra blankets or table linens in them. What about an ottoman that doubles as a coffee table that you can put video game controllers and movies or games in.

Make your home both beautiful and functional by using a little creativity and imagination when it comes to extra storage.

Use these cute little boxes in a small bathroom to hold extra towels,toilet tissue, or other toiletries. The possibilities are endless, limited only by your imagination. Have fun and get creative with your storage needs. I would love to hear some of your creative storage ideas.
The above items and more can be purchased at

Friday, August 14, 2009

Up and Coming Color Trends

Purple is the hottest "new again" color in home decorating. You don't have to look very far to see it even in the fashion industry. With the onslaught of purple in several different shades we will begin to see more grays and charcoal's making a comeback as well.
Green is still a very hot color but you will see the hue move from sage(which is passe) to greens with more yellowish undertones
Blues are continuing to make a comeback. We will see soft tones such a a robin's egg blue, as well as deeper shades of ocean blues.
Everything I have read states that yellow is the new orange and is also making a huge presence in home decor items. Use it in soft hues and than pop more color in the room with your accessories. The right shades of purple and yellow can really make a statement in a bath or bedroom too.
Brown has become the new black over the last few years and continues to have a strong presence in paint and home furnishings.
Coral is coming back as well, a softer version of the oranges and rusts.
Many restful softer colors are making a comeback such as beige, taupe's, soft grays, pale blues, and greens. Colors I often associate with spa colors. I see this as a chance to create a more restful place at home to escape from the busy lives we all lead.
All in all, I hold to my belief that whatever the trend is, you need to surround yourself with the things you love.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Bathroom Before and After

Finally, the bathroom project is finished! I have some "sort of" before pictures. I didn't think to take a picture prior to stripping down the bathroom. I think you will still see the improvement over plain white walls. Hopefully you will be inspired to tackle a project yourself.

As you can see from this last one, we still need to replace the flooring, but what a difference just painting the brass light fixture to bronze and painting the walls has made in transforming and updating the tired old bathroom.

Monday, August 10, 2009


We had our 30 yr class reunion this weekend. It was a blast! My husband and I graduated in the same class so it makes the reunion fun for both of us. We have some great friends who we have kept a relationship with over the years and they all stayed with us. It was a wonderful time. It is amazing how everyone at the reunion looked "old" (except for us of course :) yet for the most part we could still recognize each other. It was by far the best reunion yet. I think all the walls come down and everyone realizes we are all just people trying to make a difference in the world. It was interesting to me that even people who didn't really like each other in high school were greeting each other warmly. Maturity at it's best.
The last few weeks have given me cause for reflection and I have wondered many times about "how did I get here?" I don't feel that much older and certainly not like I have been out of high school 30 yrs. Yet I wouldn't trade the person I am now for the person I was then for anything. I am so much more secure in who I am and I love my life. I like the journey the Lord has taken me on over the years to create and shape me into the person He wants me to be. Even when the road has been difficult it is always for my good.
I guess I got a bit off track here. All this to say it was a great time, I am thankful for lifelong friends who know me well and love me anyway. It is truly a blessing.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Return from mission to Mexico

Kaitlyn(center) made it home from Ensenada, Mexico late Sunday night. She has not stopped talking about her experiences there. She and the team had an incredible time. They spent their mornings finishing construction on a house. They got to hand the keys to the home over to the new owners before they left. “Bus driver…move that bus!” How exciting is that. Not only do they get to work on the house, but they’re able to be a part of the key ceremony. The team had also been holding youth rally’s every afternoon, reaching out to the teenagers in the area. They started on Monday with 20 or so who came. That number grew steadily throughout the week, and they had as many as 150 at the closing rally. The students gave their testimonies and sermons in these rallies and did an excellent job. I do not know how many of the Mexico kids accepted Christ but I know there were some.
Kaitlyn is so touched by her week there and in her words"I am so on fire for God." She was also touched with the reality that we as Americans have so much that we take for granted. My prayer for Kaitlyn is that the appreciation for all she has will continue and that the fire she came home with will last forever. Thank you every one who prayed God did do an amazing work in the lives of the team and the children of Ensenada.

50 Years

We attended a 50th anniversary party this weekend. It got me to thinking about that lifelong commitment that we make when we are young and "so in love". I doubt many of us really understand the true depth of the vows we are making on our wedding day. By that I mean in reality we have no clue what that commitment will demand of us over the long haul. I love being married and I really really love my hubby, but there are moments in every marriage where we may not always "like" each other. We may even question our sanity in thinking we could live with only one person our entire life.
Marriage goes beyond the "I DO" It takes an act of our will every day to make a marriage work. When our friends were asked their secrets of making it 50 yrs their answer was not short and to the point, it was many things. The following things are some things they shared, some are things I have learned in my 27 yrs of marriage. First and most important put God first in your marriage.
1. Affirm your spouse daily, build him up.
2. Love and accept your spouse just as God made them
3. Love even when you do not feel like it
4. Pray Together
5. Never let divorce be an option
6. Take time to just be a couple
7. Forgive
8. Bring a sense of humor to your marriage
9. Do something special for him just because
10. Always bring lots of laughter into your home

There are so many other things to build a wonderful marriage. I'm sure you can think of many. The hard part is just putting them into practice. So go this day and do one of them. May we be well on our way to 50 years too.