There are many stories told and memories made on our PORCHES!

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“I’m an old fashioned guy…I want to be an old man with a beer belly, sitting on a porch looking at a lake or something.” ~ Johnny Depp.(I can just imagine him saying this too!)

“When I was about three, my grandfather used to give me and my sister a nickel to sit on the front porch with him and sing songs.” ~ Tommy Shaw

“I live in New York and it’s the greatest city but sometimes I want to move to the place with the porch and the lemonade and the farm.” ~Leelee Sobieski

“Our Porches! They invite cozy conversations, mirthful celebrations with friends and family and hours of  blithesome repose.”

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Whether you call it your front porch, the verandah, your back porch or the piazza , this special place that we absolutely love to spend as much time as possible, truly is a gift, a lagniappe that is greater than the structure of it’s four walls.  I have often thought to myself,  “If this porch could hear, I can only imagine the secrets it could tell as well as the books it could write on all that it’s ears have taken in.

Our porches, just like our homes, reflect our personalities. Some porches are ‘for looks only,’ while others carry the demeanor of being broken in and lived upon daily. They are as much fun to decorate as the rooms in your home as you fill them with all the things you love, your favorite colors and  your very own signature STYLE.

I absolutely adore this home, or should I say this waterfront , par-excellence mansion,  classy estate or  bite-size castle?  It is alluring to the senses, showstopping with it’s divine structure, period look, and is so stunning as well as  junoesque. It encourages one to dream of many happy years within (and outside of) it’s borders.  A porch this large is the perfect place for an evening of delectable appetizersand fine wine,  a ladies Tea or telling ghost stories in the summer months with the thunderstorms in the background,(the most excellent and ideal milieu.)   (We can always dream, can’t we?) 🙂

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This porch is dressed to the hilt for the Christmas season... It’s not only inviting but beautifully creative. I love the red check pillows amidst the black cushion, cuddly brown pillow and fresh, crisp white embroidered linen. What a classy combination. The grey wicker furniture is a perfect match for the colors chosen as it only enhances this porches cozy  and warm appeal. This sweet and winning verandah beckons you to grab a warm sweater, a soft throw to snuggle up with, a hot cup of coffee and to come, sit and stay awhile!I

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How about a lovely, romantic dinner for two on your porch? With the ideal weather,  ethereal temperatures, captivating table setting  and  shimmering candle light, this porch is an excellent stage for an intimate dinner with the one you love, (or are falling in love with 🙂 ) Very impressive!

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This porch is large enough for a potpourri of tables to be set up for a small gathering or   a glamorous and enchanting night of formal entertaining.  The view from this verandah is so exhilarating and soothing to the soul with all the lush shades of green…it exudes LIFE!  I could see myself out here every morning with my coffee, magazine, beloved novel or my journal. (And a space heater if the winter season has arrived.) 🙂

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I loved the quote above, by Leelee Sobieski about living in the prominent city …There are so many blessings in living “the big city life.” Especially in such fascinating and timeless metropolis’  such as Washington DC, New York, Chicago or the midtown and port of Philadelphia. Penthouses, apartments and condominiums are wonderful abodes, but often times, they do not offer the luxury of a piazza. If you are in a home that does not have a porch, but you are blessed with a back yard, I love the idea of creating a resplendent and graceful sitting area out doors that friends can gather, or a place that you can saunter off to, that brings you gladness and many hours of pure reverie.  This outdoor creation will not only enhance your life, give you an additional room to your home but will bring you an outflow of joy , happiness and beauty.

Two of these back yard works of art, are very fancy and formal, while the third back yard is beautiful with nature doing all the hard work! 🙂  Your backyard creation can be whatever you would like it to be, a picnic table or wicker furniture, adorned with bright pillows, and striking throws. Fresh flowers, dried roses or incandescent painted chairs create color and are eminently inviting. We have a homemade bonfire pit in our back yard and some of my most treasured memories are those we have made sitting on a plastic chair, wrapped in a warm jacket, glass of wine in hand, enjoying hot appetizers with great company!   I guarantee you, it will be the conversations, laughs, smiles and friendships your amongst  that will create your fond and precious memories .A-10Z-1049C-16

As a little girl, I will never forget visiting my father’s family in North Carolina. (Having lived In South Carolina,) I will tell you that besides their adoration for delectable “home-cooking,”  the residents of the Carolina’s are lovers of front porches, back porches, side porches, you name it!    My father’s aunt sat with me on her front porch, (she had a beautiful cottage style home,) teaching me how to prepare fresh, green beans in the sweltering southern heat. ( Southerner’s  know this…the humidity in the summer is so thick that you can cut it with a knife.) 🙂  As the perspiration was dripping down my face,cottages I learned how to pick the best green beans, how to snap them correctly and get them ready for cooking. I felt so grown up! (I also got to hear lots of talk about how beautiful and exquisite  my mom was in her twenties, and how her nephew was the one that caught my moms heart, out of all the beaus she could have had.) I already KNEW the story, I just wanted to hear it again, and again!) 🙂 I can’t leave out all the times my husband, Graham and I sat on the porch of my cousins antebellum  countryside home, watching his kids set off fireworks over their many acres of land, and eating scrumptious boiled peanuts! Those were the days! There is nothing like  the mighty Oak tree in the south, (and I am still looking for the scrumptious boiled peanuts in Delaware.) 🙂

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Our dear friends and neighbors have a beautiful screened in back porch. All of the mornings, afternoons and evenings my husband, Grantham and I have spent on their endearing porch remind me of the quote by John Masefield.  “Happiness flutters in the air while we rest among the breaths of nature.” Talk about an atmosphere filled with Sylvan charm, their garden amidst the lush grass, the undomesticated woods that line the back of their lot is like encountering a spring time pageantry. The hours spent on this piazza were hours of pure joy, felicity and blissfulness as we told stories, shared our lives, laughed, cried, prayed, reminisced together, tasted delicious snacks and appetizers as well as shared many a cup of Starbucks coffee, fine wine or an ice cold beer.  Right outside the screens of this porch is a view that took my breath away… often times, we’d see baby deer eating fresh corn on the lawn and chubby groundhogs waddling in circles, (they love to ruin your gardens you know? ) 🙂 (But they are so darn cute!) We also beheld an abundance of squirrels scurrying , picking up whatever they could find to eat, wild turkeys yelping as they trotted across the lawn, bunny rabbits with their adorable babies and of course the magical twinkling fireflies charming us all as they gathered by the porch but also presented their show afar in the  wild ivy and trees of the woods.

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Then of course there is ‘the porch swing’ stories….that is another blog at another time! 🙂A-15

Whether you have a grandeur verandah,  a cozy, inviting screened in backyard porch, a  piazza in your front yard where you sit and chat with friendly neighbors or an outside area that you’ve created yourself, take time to make it your own, and  spend as many hours as possible within it’s glorious presence, creating many a heartwarming memory to bring you an abundance of smiles now and  in your future.A-16

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Exhilarating and Blissful Springtime .

 The front door to springtime is a photographer’s best friend. ~Terri GuillemetsZ-3026

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Spring time is the land awakening. The march winds are the morning yawn.” ~ Lewis Grizzard

“Every spring is the only spring – a perpetual astonishment.”  ~ Ellis Peters”

“And Spring arose in the garden fair, Like the Spirit of Love felt every where; And each flower and herb in earths dark breast, Rose from the dreams of its wintry rest.” ~ Percy Bysshe Shelly

“April prepares her green traffic light and the world thinks GO.” ~ Christopher Morely

“Science has never drummed up quite as effective a tranquilizing agent as a sunny spring day.” ~ W. Earl Hall

“I love spring anywhere but if i could choose, I would always greet it in a garden.”~ Ruth Stout

 

The word that comes to my mind when I think about springtime is “WELCOME!” It is the time of the year where everything is brand new…fresh aromas, pristine colors blooming, and an abundance of new growth and sunshine. It is a time of life and rebirth…Living in Delaware, Z-5000(our back yard conjoined to the woods,)  we see a sundry of nature’s bounty everyday…wild flowers and untamed, lush green ivy climbing up the massive trees along with fresh green grass, where only weeks ago, it was a wintry grey and  exceedingly barren.  The meadow, with it’s array of trees and multihued foliage is purely undomesticated and we absolutely love it. (Graham adores it as well!) Even though he is close to 12 years old, he still acts like a puppy, running after all the wild life, even the Brobdingnagian deer.  (And a wild cat in our neighborhood! ) 🙂

We see everything from bunnies with their babies, squirrels, ground hogs and herds of deer with their young ones close by. I have never heard so many birds singing at once and am always so blessed and graced by the beautiful robins, blue Jays, cardinals and woodpeckers. Just this morning, I stopped what I was doing to listen to the epic sound of the snow geese flying over our home as they are just now beginning their spring practice for the time they will migrate south. Their melodic sound is like music to my heart as I have grown so fond of them over the last eight years living in this maritime state.

Being a connoisseur of decorating, spring gives me an entirely new escapade to take on with bringing this exquisite time of the year to life within our walls as well as the porch, garden and outside yard. There are a multitude of ideas I want to share with you in this blog and I hope it fills your mind, as well as heart, with many creative thoughts as well as an excitement to bring forth a ‘touch of springtime’ in and around your haven.

Whether you live in the city, a Villa, the countryside, a high rise apartment or in suburbia, planting flowers, (flower boxes if needed,) brings a plenitude of warmth as well as a charming luster to the outside of your berth.

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In Springtime, your porch is waving to you, signaling you to spend time in it’s peaceful repose, to read your long forsaken novel, share a cup of coffee with your girlfriend,  lay in a hammock and take an after noon nap or call your sister in Oklahoma for a wondrous catch-up call. 🙂   Sitting on your beloved veranda, you have so many ‘ready made’ and contributory bestowals to make your time exhilarating  with the sunshine, the birds, the blooming flowers and the soft breezes.I love this batten burg lace tablecloth!

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Another heavenly spot in the  glorious season of springtime is the garden. Whatever your particular tradition is each year for the blue print of your garden, make sure it is picturesque, soothing and ageless, consisting of your favorite flowers, bushes and trees. I, personally believe roses are the prize and applause  of springtime. There is something so beguiling about it’s unique aroma as well as it’s  soft, velvety  pedals. I believe that our gardens sometimes utter more about our lives than our own words. They are not only lovely to behold, but working within them, hours at a time,  gives us such a gift of  tranquility, peace and insight into the simplicity of life. I love the quote by H. Fred Dale; “My Green thumb came only as a result of the mistakes I made while learning to see things from the plants point of view!”  Yes, planting a garden teaches us a an abundance of lessons!

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During this beloved season, my favorite embellishing adventure is to bring spring and all of its glory INTO our home. In our abode, we put a touch of spring in every room, (some rooms more than others,) not missing a detail.  Whether changing your linens and comforter to greet the season of rejoicing, putting soft,  bright towels in the bathroom,  adding bedazzling throw pillows on your couch, decorating your dining room table with an Easter theme using a color palette of spring colors, adding greenery or bunnies to your kitchen or  placing decorative topiary trees, floral arrangements and dried wreaths around the hallways and family room, your home can reflect the new season and radiate with color and beauty just like  the outside of your home.

The  dining room table is definitely an  ‘eye catcher’ and  an essential part  of creating the mood you are wanting to establish for your seasonal celebration throughout your home..  Both of these table themes are so creative and picturesque in natural simplicity for this time of year.Z-1095

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I can’t wait each year to awaken our bedroom with brighter colors and an entirely new look…(still Romantic in style, but a little softer and feminine.)  (Sorry honey.) 🙂 (I love taking out all my spring decor items and trading them in for the wintry snowmen, silver and golds.)

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The bathroom, my quiet, serene spot in the late afternoons, (as I bask in my lavender bubbles and make the water as hot as it will go,) 🙂 needs a touch of spring as well. My towels change from hunter green and burgundy to pastels and fresh whites. I place new  elegant soaps out, body sprays, powders and lighter candles in the midst of this tiny haven.  (And perhaps hang some bright kaleidoscopic garland and sneak in a few bunnies.) 🙂

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The place my husband and I love so much, (as well as our guests, and Grantham),  🙂  is the kitchen. This room is open and welcome to all of our visitors and company, no matter the occasion.   Its  one of the  rooms that some of our most meaningful and intimate conversations have taken place as we cook and create with pure abandon! Its a very pleasurable and an easy room to festoon in a lively, spring attire. It  also sparks our creative juices to flow… occasionally cooking up new recipes, inspired by our garden and the pristine new season with fresh fish, (salmon, ma-hi, sea scollops and tuna,) accompanied with fresh lemons and  savory herbs from our bountiful harvest. I especially adore displaying my collection of animated  bunnies within this adored room…Another motto of mine; “You can never have to many bunnies!) 🙂

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The Living room, (remember, its the one room that sets the mood for the entire home and is ‘most lived in,’)  deserves an ample serving of the new season. I love adding bright, motley pillows, white, tone on tone slipcovers to my couch, fresh flowers, grapevine wreaths and I even put a themed decorative tree up each year, strictly to festoon and glitz up the room with each magical season and event. (Besides my topiary trees.)  My tree is a little different that this one. (It is a tall, beautifully shaped green tree that I change every season.) For spring this year, I chose to use tapestry fabric as a garland, twinkling amber lights, my ‘finest’ bunnies and bears in my never ending collection, (hoping not to offend my fair haired and feathered older ones that are placed in less ‘showcase’ places,) 🙂 amidst floral ribbons, colorful ornamental balls in spring colors and dried roses. It is beautifully fetching as well as inviting. It stays up in our living room until the welcomed autumn season arrives…. I usually only create winter, Valentines, spring, autumn and Christmas trees. 🙂  ( I never have tried a 4th of July or summer tree but I have seen some created and they are quite adorable!)

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Come back to the garden of your youth… The glory of  your garden and your festooned ‘castle,’ are upon you …make your next gathering, whether an outside Tea, dinner party, or watching a classic movie in your living room with loved ones, pleasurable and picturesque. Springtime is also the perfect time of year to grab your loved one and go for a picnic, even if it is ‘just in your back yard.’ 🙂

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Happy Springtime.

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Table settings that will be the talk of your party!

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Famous “Kitchen and dining sayings.”

“Bon Appetit!”

“Eat well, Laugh often, Love much!”

“Eat, drink and be merry.”

“Love and cook with abandonment!”

“Many of our enamored  memories are made when gathered around the table.” ~ Author unknown

Your table setting is a gracious and hospitable labor of love to each guest, (and family member,) bringing them joy, comfort, a convivial ambiance and a feeling of being ‘colossally pampered.’  You can never have to many settings in mind for your festive occasions. Whether you have one set of china or ten, your creativity is what will catch your friends and families eye and hearts. Great ideas come from magazines as well as shopping in stores like William Sonoma and Pottery Barn. They help spark your imagination and get  your creative juices flowing.

This table setting is definitely one of the most creative and impressive tables I have ever seen. No detail is missed and the ambiance it creates is one of; “Come, rest awhile, take in a few hours of placidity and respite and ENJOY! ” (A definite welcome as well as distraction from the world and our hectic schedules.) 🙂

Whether you are serving an early summer dinner in the garden, backyard or having ladies over for a scrumptious luncheon on the veranda, pick a few colors for your color  palette, an idea for your centerpiece and begin creating. This setting is brought to life with a potpourri of textures, soft pastels of creamy whites, yellows, and highlights of light blues and greens. This table is imminently  creative with its wondrous ingredients, all of the accessories are eye catching and arresting.  I adore the blithesome white rabbits filled with flowers, ornate pewter bunnies and silvery napkin rings, achromatic charger plates under the bone white china and soft candles glowing amongst the topiary candle stand, (in which this hostess has put decorative Easter egg candles along with heartwarming photographs.) Her artwork is all complimented by the the gorgeous, rich, dark wood table.   White plates are prodigious as they fit with every occasion and all you, the decorator, has to do is embellish and bedeck them with your accent colors and decorations.

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 This autumn table setting gets my mouth watering for some superb, homemade chili and and cornbread. 🙂  What a cozy greeting this setting brings!  Mixing golds, greens and silver is rich, alluring and magical. This would be perfect for a chilly autumn night …surprise your family with a special dinner, (a comfort dinner as I call them,) and light your candles and celebrate the joy of all being together.

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This table in it’s array of beauty and glory is more on the formal side.

This setting exudes  ROMANCE! There is nothing  like a myriad of lit candles, glistening with their dancing flames, bringing warmth and cozy conversation, accompanied by white, silver and ravishing, stunning wood. Several vases filled with the white flowers adds grace and refinement to this table. Instead of plates, as your guests arrive, they will see a menu of the ‘evenings cuisine’ placed at each setting. As you serve each course,  your guests will feel as if they are dining at a five star restaurant! This  is one of my favorite table settings.

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                                          A touch of Christmas is in the air!

Everyone who knows me, would tell you that I am a connoisseur of topiary trees. I have used them for many years as my centerpiece, accented with seasonal decor, created in the color theme for the festive gala I am hosting at my home. You can dress them up or play them down, either way they are a stunning addition to the core and essence of your table.   I have one topiary that has an angel as the tree, made out of  natural, green moss. It is adorable and very unique. My favorite  topiary tree is one that I made many years ago. It has a  multifarious of eye catching hues and textures. It is done in roses and small tiny leafs festooned with a shimmering gold ribbon running through it.  (Very Victorian looking!) These diverse settings are all about the Christmas season. Again, using white as the base color and adding reds and greens! Simple, yet elegant and inviting! (I especially love all the candles…the reflection of their flames on the glass coverings will be absolutely mesmerizing, creating  a very intimate and cozy ambiance.)  I adore how this hostess has placed a lovely gift at each place setting. (I always emplace their creatively wrapped  gift next to their place card,) creating excitement and wonder for each friend or family member, as they try to guess what their token might be. (Maybe some ambrosial lotions, Josh Grobin CD, seasonal room sprays, a romantic comedy DVD, or perhaps a Yankee Candle in a savory Christmas scent.)

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                      Springtime has arrived at this intimate gathering.

This table creates the feeling of fresh air, a change of season, (spring time) and festivity, yet it is very simple. I have a few chargers to place under my plates for Christmas as they are red, green and gold. (I do however use the gold for a romantic setting and the red for Valentines day.)   I love how this table uses a very large plate underneath in a solid color,  (instead of a charger,) accenting the very quaint and charming china, adding even more eye-catching textures upon the table top.   This could be a special and intimate lunch with a few girlfriends or family, or again, because it is dressed for spring, an early supper.  If you weren’t in the mood for the season of new beginnings and rebirth, you would be after dining at this table. 🙂 It’s your gala so feel free to add “your creative juices” to some of these ideas…I love to use lace or linen table cloths as well as seasonal place mats when entertaining. They add a wealth of color and elegance.

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 What a gorgeous centerpiece. It shows you can go to any length to create the perfect quintessence of your core decoration. It’s so creative. I love how  the Terra cotta bowls are placed under the green cabbage plates highlighted with the hostess gift of a planted flower. The centerpiece is breathtaking with its creamy white candles amidst the pink and green flowers. (It almost resembles a miniature ‘greenhouse.’ ) This setting looks like an intimate ladies get-together. (I can taste  the sweet iced tea with a fresh sprig of mint right now. ) 🙂Z-1037

 Warm and cozy with a choice of such rich colors, this setting is definitely for the brisk and very welcomed Fall season. Using miniature pumpkins with tea light candles inside, amidst the golds and elegant purple with individual  place cards is very creative. The colors continue in the centerpiece amongst the flowers and fall foliage and create a table that is not only  inviting but creates a desire to decorate the rest of the house with pumpkins, scarecrows and autumn garlands with all the fall hues, (bright golds, orange, yellows and reds, and yes, purple!)

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A Valentines celebration to the max! I can envision this table with several couples sharing a very intimate early dinner…(Of course I would have my little porch space- heaters set up to keep us all warm if the chill of February blew in that evening.) 🙂 I adore the reds amongst the oatmeal-white china with its dainty pattern, lace napkins, tall white pillar candles, with their enchanting flames reflecting upon the hurricane lamps  amongst the valentine decor. This porch is very romantic as well with its abundance of screened in windows along with the white sheers. Definitely one of my favorites!

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I hope these table settings have inspired you and  have given you some ideas for your parties, whether small and intimate or formal and affable.  When I married my husband, I inherited a gorgeous set of Noritake, white bone china with a gold rim gracing it’s edges from his beloved mom. I can’t tell you how many times I have used that china as a foundation to build upon for the table settings at my gatherings. You can find inexpensive, delight-some dinner plates at T.J. Max or Marshall’s. (I have collected a myriad of blue and white prints that I mix and match from these particular shops and have seen some very appealing white plates there as well.)

Enjoy your time of creating, planning, preparing  and revel in your finished work! (As well as the ambrosial cuisine and guests.) 🙂 If ever you feel you would like “a little extra help,” especially as you are beginning your journey in creating a more beautiful home and way of life, there are some wondrous Event Planners available. 🙂

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The Living Room…the place where happy sounds reverberate throughout the room.

“You are a king by your own fireside as much as any Monarch in his throne.” ~ Cervantes

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Did you know that your living room creates a lasting impression to all those who enter it’s doors? It ‘tells on you,’ whether or not you are a laid back kind of person, a collector of antiques, country at heart, formal or a lover of hodgepodge. With first time visitors to your abode, your secret is now out!  🙂  This room is a very special room for in actuality,  it sets the mood for the rest of your home.

“Every house where love abides and friendship is a guest, is surely home , and home sweet home, for there your heart can rest.”  ~ Henry Van Dyke

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I again liken the creation of this very eventful room, to an artist that has been given a blank canvas along with the tools to bring forth the dream within their heart, thus the dream becomes reality, so that many others may behold the beauty. YOU are the artisan…your living room is your fresco! Creating a painting is likened to deposing a brush stoke around a concept, notion or idea. Never be afraid of YOUR ideas!

I like to think that at the core and center of every home, there is a personal tone and fashion that always illuminates through. Where does it come from?  Perhaps from our roots, escapades and adventures in life, our interests as well as our passions. Create your home, each and every room, from what is within! (You can never go wrong!)

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Whether you call your main room your living room, sitting room, parlor or drawing room, It is the room that is ‘lived in’ the most. It is the room where you will entertain guests, do homework with your kids, watch great movies, listen to your favorite, (or everyone’s favorite 🙂 ) genre of music, and enjoy one another as you share your lives together. It is your ‘hearts gratified snuggery room’…you get to chose to open your door to the outside world or leave it shut! Create your ‘parlor’ to be a room filled with all the things YOU LOVE and that you are in love with.

Our living room is a sundry of decorating themes but I liken it mostly to the Shabby Chic style accented with a little Victorian amidst a bit of a country-cottage air.

“Home is a place you grow up wanting to leave, and grow old, wanting to get back to.” ~ John Ed Pearce

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Our living room has witnessed a myriad of memories. Game playing, movie nights, bible studies, Ladies tea’s, birthday parties, sleepovers, (we have a couch bed and an abundance of out of state guests,) laughter, tears, joy, delicious cuisine, entertaining friends and family and lots of ‘nosy neighbor behavior,’ as we have a lot of windows. (Yes, we are the nosy ones! OK, It is really our Briard Graham and I that are the inquisitive ones.)  🙂   It is our families favorite room. (But not because of the windows.) 🙂

Whether your tastes are nautical, formal and elegant, pure country, a potpourri of different themes mixed together, country cottage or vintage, beautify your place with all the things you love, your favorite colors and furniture, and of course all your  treasured accent pieces. Some of our prized and significant decor items are  seasonal throws, candles, hutches adorned with garlands intertwined with enchanting lights, a montage of throw pillows, accent rugs, an old, solid oak and very handsome over sized desk that I do all my work at and adore. We also display a few very beloved teddy bears, a tea pot shaped pewter lamp, lit up seasonal trees, photographs, ornate plates and my hope chest, often times used our our coffee table. What I love most about each friends or family members homes that we visit, is how very different all of our tastes are and how much I love their decor as it fits them so well. All of their homes are warm, alluring, and cheerful (just like them) and truly displays a part of their personality.

“The light is what guides you home, the warmth is what keeps you there.” ~ Ellie Rodriguez

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As you create your living room, remember that all the fabulous things you love, bring accolade to one another. Have fun, enjoy, show off your personality and then DELIGHT yourself, every hour you spend in your ‘hearts jubilant snuggery” with the ones you love the  most!

*Be sure to check out the other blogs on how to decorate your living rooms in different styles and themes,  located in the “Living room” category!

Happy Decorating!

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Celebrated and historic decorative items to warm your hearts as well as home.

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Whether from an adventurous Alaskan Cruise, a long awaited trip to Paris, a visit to England, Italy, Washington DC or a drive to the prominent Charleston, South Carolina to enjoy the beaches, historic sites and fantastic eateries, the things we buy while we are away on our excursions, become treasures, wondrous memories and a great way to add decor to our homes.

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While visiting ‘lands from afar,’ some blithesome keepsakes to buy (to keep the special  memories  of your holiday and furlough alive,) might be an exquisite duvet for your bed or an ornate china plate to display on your hutch, bedside table or in a snug kitchen corner. How about an Eiffel tower ornament to place upon your tree at Christmas time, reminding you of your time in Paris.  Some other ideas, (these you may want shipped home and forgo boarding them on the plane,) are a delicate and fanciful lampshade, an elaborate antique mirror for your guest room and perhaps a breathtaking cup and saucer from the 18th century.   All of these tokens not only beautify your ‘castle,’ but beckon you to revisit your time in that “far away land”  that you spent so many hours getting refreshed.

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For your children, nieces and nephews, grandchildren or the ‘child within you,’ a fun memento from your travel days would be to bring home an ‘irresistible,’  beloved Teddy Bear, (they even have passports for them now-a-days,) (truly they do!) 🙂  How about a stunning  rooster from France for your kitchen or a ‘Mr. Chef,’ to remind you of all the scrumptious and inciting cuisine you enjoyed in Italy?

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Maybe your trip away won’t be out of the country…perhaps a drive to the beautiful East Coast to visit it’s famous beaches and historical monuments. Being that my heritage comes from the south, I love paintings from southern artesians or places I recall growing up. (One of my favorite being Charleston South Carolina.)  Multicolored beach towels and creative coffee mugs are a great souvenir to recall  long chats on the beach, listening to the waves roar and feeling the warm sun glistening upon your skin.  They add charm and cheerfulness to your home. Decorative throws not only add texture and color to your abode but keep you warm and cozy in the chilly winter and fall months. They are also great for our beloved porches in the spring and summer seasons, as they beautifully adorn your wicker furniture. Little memories are perfect to tuck away in your suitcases…starfish from Myrtle Beach, ceramic plant pots or flower holders and topiary bunnies from the outlets at the shore. Our vacations are what memories are made of.

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THE DISTINGUISHED QUOTE CORNERAdorable Baby Boy in Suit on Cellphone

“One should never be the oldest thing in ones house.” ~ Patsy Stone

“Decorating’s golden rule: Live with what you love.” ~ Unknown

“Home is the nicest word there is.” ~ Laura Ingalls Wilder

“I have collections of quirky things from places I have  been to, like a set of Russian dolls.” ~ Emma Watson

“Decorate your home. It gives the illusion that your life is more interesting than it really is.” ~ Charles M. Schultz  (A little humor here! 🙂

“Love of beauty is taste. The creation of beauty is art.” ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

In this blog about celebrating our memories and history,  don’t forget there are a myriad of treasures containing  the very things our ancestors  have passed down to us that bring people and  our heritage alive amongst our everyday lives.  China tea cups passed down from your grandmother, a silver candelabra inherited from a beloved parent, Victorian picture frames from a cherished aunt and lastly, a beautiful purse purchased abroad and sent your way ‘just because.’

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When I look around our little haven, I am filled with so much awe, joy and fulfillment, accompanied by many smiles as I envision all the love stories behind some of my prized decor items. For some reason, they mean a little bit more than the plate hanger I found at the flea market or the throw pillows I bought on sale at a  countryside boutique. Take some time to re-visit your past and the things, (perhaps packed away or just hidden from view,) that make your heart smile as you recall the wonderful memories they bring to life.

HAPPY HUNTING!

PHOTOGRAPHS: In placing your computer mouse upon any photo or graphic, it will display where the picture originated from.

LINKS to come! 🙂