Are you a chocolate lover? There's a saying I've seen floating around the internet for quite some time... Chocolate makes everything better. Today I'm here to tell you that chocolate hot fudge sauce makes everything better. Okay, maybe not everything.     But surely, it's the finishing touch to a brownie and ice cream sundae. I have to tell you, I'm a recent convert to hot fudge sauce. Recently my friend made it for my husband's birthday.  And as you might have guessed...I was skeptical. Why?  Because I was always disappointed whenever I ordered a dessert anywhere topped … [Read more...]

I can hardly believe it! It's late December and there isn't a flake on the ground here in Michigan. After last year's deep freeze and over abundance of snow... I'm loving it! In fact, I think that I'll celebrate with paper snowflakes this year. :)   After Christmas do you transition to winter home decor?  If you're trying to figure out how to transition your Christmas decor to winter, this just might be the perfect idea for you.   If you'd like to see some of my other ideas, check out a guide I wrote for eBay.  Click on the pin here.    It's time for Project Inspire{d}! I am so … [Read more...]

Wow! That was fast! I cannot believe how quickly the Christmas season zoomed in and out this year. We were blessed to have had some special time with my husband's family, plus a brief time with dear friends we rarely see.  I know the holidays are not wonderful for everyone.  But, I do hope in the midst of it all, you were able to sense God's amazing love for you.  It's that love that brought us the very best gift we'll ever know. Do you ring in the New Year with family and friends?  However you celebrate, large or small, quiet or loud, we've got some delicious New Year's Eve menu ideas from this week's Project … [Read more...]

In busyness of the season, you may have missed my popular series, Creating Christmas Memories with Vignettes. Each week we were blessed by one of my blogging friends as they shared their Christmas Memories with a special vignette or maybe several.  More than anything, I loved the stories they shared.  Our heart strings seem to be more sensitive this time of year.   Maybe now that everything is decorated, you'll enjoy their posts in a new and fresh way.  It's a good time to take a look at your decor and make plans now to create Christmas memories to be treasured with vignettes. If you missed the … [Read more...]

This post is a partnership with Blinds.com. All opinions are entirely my own.  Have you ever been invited to someone's home for "the big game" and once it was game time, the blinds came down and the curtains were drawn so that everyone could see the TV without glare?   My good friends did that very thing.  Their room started to feel closed in and cave-like. It was like being in another world.  Quickly I had no idea what the day was like outside the windows, it felt like night inside, just so we could watch the game. I don't know about you, but I'm one of those gals who prefers not to have anything at her … [Read more...]

Have you given much thought to outdoor decorating for Christmas? I'm sure you've seen the homes with all the colorful light displays and entryways beautifully festooned with greens and lights.     Today I'm sharing an idea for decorating those areas that are more personal.  The ones not seen from the street... such as the back porch.  The places where you'll enjoy your favorite things with a holiday or wintry flair.     As I was going through some old photos, I discovered I took several pictures of an outdoor wintry garden vignette on my back porch.  This was … [Read more...]

Are you ready for Thanksgiving? I confess... usually I have plenty of plans made by this time... but I don't necessarily do well in the execution department unless I get all the details prepared a week in advance.  Let's just say someone might have had a meltdown. One thing I like to do is have my table planned out and set ahead of time.  For me, that is an important detail that gives me a lot of peace and joy. This year I created an Oak Leaf  Thanksgiving Menu Frame for the buffet.     You can read all the details at Mod Podge Rocks.   And speaking of Thanksgiving … [Read more...]

  Today we're making another stop at my friend's home to see her lovely living room dressed for fall. Earlier in the season I showed you her jewel-toned dining room, her stunning entryway, and I showed off my book page pumpkins on her screen porch.     This past weekend I was at her home and finally the sun came out so I could get some good shots of her living room.   In between a trip to the farmers' market and breezing out for a stop at the hob lob, I grabbed my camera and shot a few photos.  I didn't take a lot of photos... this is pretty much everything.  This was not a photo … [Read more...]

You've just moved into a 70's house with flocked wallpaper in your main hallway.  What do you do? I know this didn't require a moment of thought... "Strip it off, as fast as possible!" Now, I know that not everyone subscribes to that thought.  I know someone who didn't want to deal with stripping flocked paper off the lath walls of her old farmhouse, so she painted it.  The pattern was subtle and it worked for her dining room.  But...I digress.     My good friend tackled the flocked wallpaper challenge and won!  After countless hours of stripping away that ugly old wallpaper, she had … [Read more...]

    It's been nearly a year since I've had the pleasure of hosting overnight guests. My friend and her daughter were driving between Chicago and New York State when they took a detour to visit us. We aren't sure, but it seems like it's been close to two years since we've been able to get together.  When you do life with someone on a nearly daily basis...through the thick and thin, but mostly thin....it's a joy to finally be able to spend time together.  We've burned many minutes chatting on the phone, but that isn't quite the same, is it?     I love serving a nice … [Read more...]

Have you ever wanted to bring someone a bouquet of flowers, or have a beautiful vase of fresh flowers in your home, but didn't have the extra money to pick up something from the grocery or florist?   Unless you live in a concrete jungle, I have a great tip for you.... Look along the roadways as you travel and start to notice all the wildflowers growing along the byways.  That is where I found the flowers to create this arrangement for my friend who just had knee surgery.   Over the years, I've noticed that when I gather these bouquets, the flowers just naturally complement each other. … [Read more...]

  Getting together with friends is one of the most challenging things about long distance moves. Living five to nine hours away from each other means we stay connected via Facebook, email, and of course, by phone. But, there's nothing better than being face-to-face, is there?     Recently I was able to spend some time with a dear long-time friend. After getting into town, I joined her and her family for breakfast.  After a delicious breakfast of baked stuffed raisin bread french toast, we covered three coastal towns and visited some of her favorite thrift shops, enjoyed … [Read more...]

It's just mid June and already things are heating up. Usually when it starts to warm up outside, we want to keep the house cool inside.   We can do things like close the windows and curtains to keep out the heat from the sun, strategically use fans, and if we're blessed to have air conditioning, set the thermostat to a comfortable temperature. All those things are great.  But, in the summer we can also turn the temp down and cool off with blue and white in our homes. And to keep things fresh and simple for summer, I've also found that it also helps to make sure our horizontal surfaces are … [Read more...]

Spring planting season is around the corner for those of us who live "up north." Right now it's a great time to plant trees and yummy blueberry bushes. Do you have any blueberry bushes?  I can't wait 'til I'm able to have my own fresh picked organic blueberries. Yum!!   In the meantime, I'm dreaming of flowers to plant once we are frost-free. Do you have "go to" favorites every year, or are you into experimenting with colors and heights and textures? I do have a few "go to" favorites.  But, they will always be used in the midst of my experimental containers.  Because there is always … [Read more...]

Hope you had a great Easter celebration! We enjoyed a wonderful service at church, a delicious dinner, and the most gorgeous weather. Speaking of weather.  It feels like summer today!  After this very long winter it's amazing! No doubt you were busy over the holiday weekend.  Just in case you missed this...I shared some Last Minute Ideas for Your Easter Table, including a place card printable and tutorial, egg decorating idea, and recipes.  "Pin" for next year here.     When the weather gets warm, many of us start thinking about planting flowers. How do I know this?  My tutorial on how … [Read more...]

If you've been hanging out here for any amount of time, you've come to know that I believe that it's the little things that make life extraordinary.     There is absolutely no need to have pretty embellished valentine towels in your powder room or bath. Truly, we don't need fancy towels.   What if your friend gives you a bit of fabric? What if ivory hand towels the precise color of the fabric are discontinued and on sale for just $2.09 each? What would you do?  Get out the scissors and sewing machine and embellish a few towels for Valentine's Day? Seems like a good plan … [Read more...]

As we approach Christmas, you may or may not feel like decorating based on a whole number of reasons.  But, if your reasons have anything to do with the state of your current house...this just might be for you.   Especially at the holidays, take time for making your house your home.     As I was looking through some past posts, this one popped out at me and I thought that I would share the link with you. It's all about making your house your home....and my experience of doing that last fall. Funny how things change overnight. We were working at making that rental "our" … [Read more...]