Thursday, May 26, 2011

Fabulous Foxglove

This week the foxglove are in full glory.

Aren't they spectacular?

I don't know why you don't see them in more gardens.

From just one plant comes so MANY more next year.

I sprinkled the seeds from dried stems last year. Now, as far as the eye can see little leaves are popping up.  I'll relocate them in the fall.  I can't wait to see what they look like next year! 
It just keeps getting better and better. 

Such a show stopper!

Pop over to PVE to enter a giveaway for one of my freshwater pearl and starfish necklaces. 
Just leave her a comment (on yesterday's post) to be entered. The drawing is tomorrow. 

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Bamboo and Burlap

Now that the weather has warmed up and the garden is coming to life 
we've started doing more impromtu entertaining. 

For the last two dinner parties I went with a bamboo and burlap setting 
and we dined in the sunroom so we could enjoy the garden. 

The burlap table cloth is from Ballard, but I found it at my local consignment shop.

The bamboo flatware is from Neiman Marcus. I obsessed about it for months last summer. 
Finally bought it, and this is the first time I've used it. 

I think I'm up to five different sets of flatware. And I can say now, I use them all. 
(Good thing I installed a butler's pantry!) 

For the next dinner party we had a lot more guests and more children. 
This time I went with long burlap panels (that used to be my sunroom curtains). 

For decorations I just took a walk in my garden. 

This is what a low budget, stress free table looks like. 

The little green glasses came from World Market. But, I first saw them at Anthropologie in December. The obsession began and finally was quelled this week. 

The kids dined in the kitchen on homemade runners and 
cute paper placemats I found at Marshalls. 
The candles were electric of course :)

Here's what the kitchen looks like before the guests show up. Work in progress. 

Drinks and apps on the patio while the kids play and we wait for the rest or our guests.

Sweet sisters modeling Kayce Hughes tunics.

The lone peony. Just can't get a high yielding bush in this yard.

Foxglove and hydrangea

I'll come up with something other than burlap for the next one. Stay tuned :)

Friday, May 20, 2011

Goodbye Big Red Egg!

Well, I'm giving it back.  

 That's right, I'm re-gifting to the giver and he couldn't be happier about it.  

I'm sure it'll be a huge hit at the office. 

FYI - it distributes two gumballs w/o any germ transfer. 

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

The first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem

Did I say recovery? I meant to say recoverING. 

Chairs that is. 
And the first step is actually finding the perfect chair. Or in this case chairs.

I'll deal with my addiction later. 

For now, I'm moving these cuties from room to room and looking at fabrics. Two of my favorite things to do!  Looking for an upholsterer is not quite as fun. 

I should have married an enabler. I mean upholsterer.  

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Saturday, May 14, 2011

Reunited-a story about a chair

Remember these chairs?....

I told you about how I found them and recovered them here.

But they were vetoed by Drew and Matt so out they went.  I watched them sit month after month in the consignment shop. Unnoticed, unloved, and unappreciated for their uniqueness.

Imagine my shock yesterday in a shop I've never been to before.  As I neared the back of the store I rounded a corner and there she of the long departed chairs.

I was like a proud mother as I read the tag, and even more proud when I saw the price $100.

I couldn't help wondering though, where are the others?...

I've got to run, I'm off to pick up two more chairs I found on Craig's list. Don't worry, I'll tell you all about them. :)

Friday, May 6, 2011

The underrated alstroemeria

Oh sure, we all love peonies, tulips and roses. And around this time of year there are a lot of blog posts and photos of these classic beauties.  

But this week I'm changing my ways and opening my doors and vases to the Alstroemeria.

Do you even know what an alstroemeria is? I wouldn't, had it not been the favorite flower of an old boyfriend who liked them since they are so affordable. He never actually gave me any-just told me their name and mentioned that he liked them.  

Year after year I've walked right past the very inexpensive yet sizable bouquets that are always available and come in so many appealing colors. Sure, I've known all along that they last probably twice as long as your basic cut flower and I'd even venture to guess two to three times longer than the prissy peony.  They're always the filler flower in florists bouquets that are the last to fade. 

For some reason I bought a bunch this week. I'm trying to bring some color into my kitchen and thought, why not?  

I divided the $5 bouquet and plopped them into my milk glass urns that were looking very empty. Perfect! 

They usually look very underwhelming in the grocery store. But since getting them settled in they've opened up and are really pretty. 

From now on I will be bringing home Alstroemeria more often (also known as Peruvian Lily, Lily of the Incas or Parrot Lily)  though not THAT often because they last so long.  

I'm not declaring and all out floral revolution here, all I am saying is that you peony lovers out there should give the Alstroemeria a chance!   

 while we wait for our peonies to bloom.....

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Feels So Good!

Today I shipped out the last of my April fundraising jewelry orders.

When I announced that I was going to donate the April proceeds I was thinking my goal should be about $1000 in sales, which would get us to $2000 in total donation.  I'm happy to say that we exceeded the goal.

Thank you to everyone who supported the effort! I especially want to thank Janet who made it such a success by telling her readers several times about it.

Shown here modeling one of my bracelets

And thank you to Dani who also posted about the campaign and her satisfaction with her jewelry purchase.

Dani modeling her purchase

Making jewelry is really a creative outlet for me-clearly, I'm not in it for the money. I get so much satisfaction hearing someone tell me how happy one of my designs makes them. And when I get to see someone wearing one of my pieces, I'm thrilled to the point of distraction. Another benefit that I never expected was that making jewelry would result in making connections and new friendships.

So, while filling orders in April kept me busy and at times a little stressed, I was so motivated by the new connections, kind words and positive feedback that came back to me.

I wanted to share some of the e-mails I got:

* This means a lot to me personally, as my mother is from Japan so I have family there. Fortunately, they are south of the horrible destruction from the earthquake and tsunami, and were spared the brunt of the disaster.

* Thank You for giving me the pleasure and opportunity of working with you!

* Your package was just delivered......the necklace is awesome!  The length is perfect and the toggle is beautiful Thank you so much for going the extra mile and expense to make sure I received it before my trip. I'm so excited and can't wait to wear it.

* My beautiful pearl bracelets just arrived in the mail and I can't thank you enough.  They are even better than I expected.  The quality is stunning, just what I have been looking for! Amazing too that the funds went to such a worthy cause, very incredibly generous of you.

Thank you!