Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Homefront: Whittling Blooms 'n a Howlin' Dog

We have these blossoming "popcorn" trees, as my son would say and now that the white bradford pear flowers are turning to leaves, these purple trees are in bloom. Easily, the short branches came off for a pretty little display in a cleaned out jar. I didn't want to (force my husband) to take too many or be too stingy taking from the tree, of course, so we only took small specimens.

The flowers have been thrown on the ground by my youngest, stomped on, knocked around... and suprisingly, a few of the delicate buds still remain on one branch, the other two branches are almost naked. (Thanks Screwed Up Texan, these are Red Bud blooms!)

My two boys love picking dandelions. The stems are often too short to put in a tiny baby food jar vase, so my husband thought it would be a good idea to float them in this here jar. Cute, a touch of color!

Did you know that picked dandelions still turn white and fluffy to blow on when you let them dry out?

The real story here is this little dog. My grandfather, who primarily served guard duty in the US military during the Korean War, loves to whittle. He has made all types of figurines and has even made canes from trees he has chopped himself, waxed them and even sold a few. He's a magnificent man. A real, humble, Renaissance  man.

I once admired this little dog he made and he gave it to me, then and there. It is a treasured little creature in my home, and knowing the way the world works, I felt impressed to capture it's sweetness here on my blog before a boy tornado took it out somehow.

He carved his name and info on the belly of the dog. Jack Butler, Sheldon Missouri, 1998. You can read more about him here and here.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Holiday with Matthew Mead

Head over to Holiday with Matthew Mead to find out how you can win the opportunity to have your blog or online shop mentioned in the magazine. Holiday with Matthew Mead is a "book-azine" celebrating and offering inspiration for the Christmas holiday season. To be released in October 2010, Holiday is offered via online orders only - in limited quantities - and will not be sold on newsstands. But, by simply following the BUY HOLIDAY MAGAZINE link below their banner, you can reserve your own copy of this beautiful magazine, with guaranteed delivery of the magazine straight to your mailbox! Holiday with Matthew Mead is144 pages of holiday inspiration with well-known and admired designers, bloggers and top-notch features, printed on beautiful paper and not drowning in ads!
Now, head on over for your chance to win!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Draped in Comfort


These are some of my favorite 2009-10 styles captured by Scott Schuman, aka The Sartorialist, from all over the world. Now if you want to see some true, homegrown fashion, then check out his vintage photos contest. And if your man dresses a little shabby, he too can get a nice taste of style ideas as well.

Alessandra, Milan

While most of the masses are getting a tizzy for Spring time dressing in brighter colors, I am grasping at straws here hoping to wear my wonderful fall clothes a little longer. I think the idea behind it is, the styles are tried and true. They've been tested, are comfortable and easy to know which will remain a classic style and which ones will fall by the wayside come next season.

Maria Carla, Milan
Maybe it's a Texas thing, me hating the summers and all, but I think I just happen to love layering and simple muted tones with layers and wanting to wear them all the time. Fall/winter styles being in the clearance section right about now sure helps as well. Even though many of these styles features boots, distressed jeans, trenches and scarves, a sprinkling of light dresses and blouses can be found in those classic muted hues I love.


There is an effortless chic in the way the clothes hang, as well as soft barely noticeable details that really complete the outfit, such as a crisp cuff, rolled hem, a simple pleat or ruffle. Scott has a way of empasizing these details that one may easily passover, and the comments on each post shares his sentiments.

Chloe cape, Paris
Sau Paulo
West Village, NYC


Marais, Paris

Ninth Ave, NYC

Joana, Brazil

Ninth Ave, NYC



Saturday, March 27, 2010

Sweet Treats: Happy Sundae!

We had a wonderful weekend, and I am excited to close this week, to wake in the morning to a bright and shiny new Sunday to reflect on the Saviour, appreciate my family, set some new goals and be sure to dig into a yummy ice cream sundae, complete with lots of chocolate sauce, fresh fruit and sprinkles!

May your Sabbath be full of peace, rest, love, charity, warmth and lots of sweets.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Little Outdoor Rooms

outdoor retreat ~ house to home uk

Springtime is the ultimate outdoor time around here. It's not too hot, (in which Texas summers I practically hibernate), nor is it too cold.

treehouse ~ home sweet style

Seeing how a simple shed, garage, canopy tent, or even a tree house can be turned into a sweet little escape, gives me a glimmer of hope when we finally are able to move to a place with a backyard or patio of our own.

outdoor canapy draped boudior ~ hilary robertson

garage turned retreat ~ paul whicheloe photography

mediviel inspired outdoor canopy dining ~ mimicode

gorgeous pink india inspired outdoor patio with birdcage ~ domino

*Decide on a theme for the play room: we've chosen 'cowboys' - a fake cowhide rug as a wall hanging is perfect for adding touches of the wild west.
*Keep the look rustic. You don't need to paint the walls. Just varnish the floor, adding a rug to prevent splinters.
*Choose a child-size table and chairs for craft activities. Pick ones that are light enough so they can easily be lifted out on the lawn.
*Set up a craft corner. Cover a table in a wipe-clean oilcloth and a wall organizer for brushes and paints.
*Include storage for toys. Provide tubs, boxes and shelving to store toys.
*Push furniture to the sides of the room to leave a play area in the middle.
*It's a good idea to damp-proof your summerhouse – to do this, build it on a concrete base, laying a damp-proof membrane between the summerhouse and the concrete.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Herb Crusted Pork Chops Recipe

My new favorite recipe. I combined a few ideas until I came up with my perfect combination. It's great for picky eaters and quick and easy. You can also use chicken instead of pork, and it will be awesome, but the crust is a little more juicy from cooking. Amazingly, it isn't as pink, dry and burnt up looking as my photo suggests! Serve with potatoes*, greens beans, garlic bread*, salad or fresh fruit for a well rounded meal.

♥ Ingredients ♥

4 boneless porkchops
2 cups Progresso Italian Style bread crumbs
1 packet Lipton Onion Soup/Dip mix
1 c Girard's Light Caesar Salad dressing (this dressing works best)
1/3 c French's Spicy Brown Mustard (any Dijon will do)

1. Preheat oven to 375
2. Mix caesar dressing and brown mustard in a bowl.
3. In a seperate bowl, mix bread cups and dry onion soup mix. 
4. Coat pork chops in dressing mix, put in ziplock bag and marinate in fridge for up to 2 hours. Or don't marinate, (I never do) either way, it will be good.
5. Coat the dressing covered pork chops in the bread crumb mix. Place pork chops in baking sish, cover with foil and bake for approx 25 mins or until done.

♥ Garlic Rosemary Roasted Potatoes ♥

Our favorite side potatoes, made famous by my mother in law. They are great unpeeled, or peeled.

Cut into 2 chunks. Put in roasting pan and toss in olive oil, salt, pepper, rosemary, lots of garlic and basil. Cover with foil and bake at 375 for about 40 minutes, stirring occasionally.

♥ Garlic Bread ♥

Soften about 2 cups butter (I use Smart Choice). Add fresh chopped basil and freshly minced garlic to butter and mix. Cut a store bought french bread loaf and butter insides with garlic butter. Place on pan and bake for about 6 minutes.

Cut into slices and fight over the last piece.
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