Quiet, Cozy Corners ‘Just for the ladies!’


It’s Friday evening…the leaves upon your  kaleidoscopic maple trees are brilliant in their hues of bright red, electric yellow, chocolate browns and royal tones of orange…The air is  cold and crisp, the wind is blowing against your face and it tickles your cheeks in a great, nostalgic way…The gorgeous Autumn season has arrived. 🙂 The excitement stirs as your packing up your car with fresh linens, books, groceries, fine wine, candles, blankets, your favorite pillow sprayed with your regal, delightful perfume, your bubble bath, suitcase and a flashlight…cabin3You are all set to drive to your mountain cabin by the lake…It’s just you and your ipod, books and journal, some good food, wine and fresh air, the night critters, songs of the  myriad of birds, the ripples of the water slowly reaching the shoreline then leisurely receding…the  dancing, glistening amber’s of the flames burning in the hearth, smell of smokey wood, and, finally, some alone time. It’s YOUR Quiet, Cozy Corner.

It’s 80’s degrees outside, blue skies, a cool breeze, not a cloud in the sky. You grab your umbrella, colorful beach towel, cooler, sunblock, beach hat and favorite book…You are set for your resplendent day at the shoreline…cabin4 Just you, the bright sunshine, the wondrous sounds of the crashing waves, the sound of the gulls squawking, delicious food to snack upon, and the cool breeze. It’s YOUR Quite, Cozy, Corner…place of refuge and time ‘just for YOU.’

It’s your favorite time of the year…a time of new beginnings and rebirth…fresh new blooms upon all of your rose bushes and umbrella shaped Mimosa tree along with bright , motley gardens  bursting with color everywhere you look. The skies are ocean blue, and nature is busily proclaiming a new song everyday,  rejoicing  over its glorious, abounding beauty. You just got off work and the sun is laggardly  starting  it’s stunning descent. You change into your jeans, make a pot of robust, French roast coffee, pour it into a thermos, and walk down to your “little bit of heaven,” along the sandy shore, your boat  faithfully awaiting you at the weathered dock.cabin6 You venture out into the water at the precise time the sun is setting in it’s honored rhapsody…  The baronial lighthouse brings forth an abundance of whimsy emotions and the air feels unbelievably refreshing…You are now safely in YOUR Quite, Cozy, Corner. Does life get any better?


What is it about human beings and their desire as well as need for that pampering, compact niche, corner, secret hideaway? The one place that you know is JUST YOURS? I believe it starts when we are tiny, precious, animated and perky babies…Perhaps sooner, in that secure and warm place we spend our 9 months developing…the womb. Then, once we’ve entered this place, called ‘the world’,  we know that our chromatically, soft and cozily decorated tiny bed with it’s wooden walls, OUR CRIB, is ‘just ours’…our secret, SAFE dwelling place. (Though baby can not live by bread alone,) 🙂  so we have to do that loud crying thing to be held, coddled, changed and fed some of that delicious white liquid,  🙂 then, it’s back to “our cozy corner.” Even as little kids, we build our tents…create rustic,  sturdy tree houses amongst the thick branches of our colossal trees in the back yard…We make wooden signs , with “KEEP OUT” painted on them in what ever color of paint we can find in our dad’s garage. 🙂

This blog is solely about a ‘tree house’ or ‘cabin by the lake,’ within your own blissful home that is just for the lady of the house.  I hope  to share some wonderful ideas with you, that will give you some things to ponder as you create that one special place that is beautiful, coddling, peaceful, and “just yours.”



THE DISTINGUISHED QUOTE CORNER. Adorable Baby Boy in Suit on Cellphone

“I still find each day to short for all the thoughts I want to think, all the walks I want to take, all the books I want to read and all the friends I want to see.” ~ John Burroughs

“Dogs are wise…They crawl away to a quiet cornerarctic5 and lick their wounds and do not rejoin the world until they are whole once more.” ~ Agatha Christie

“You will never find time for anything. If you want time, YOU MUST MAKE IT.” ~ Charles Buxton

“May you LIVE all the days of your life.” ~ Jonathon Swift

“If you can’t get quiet enough to hear yourself, your life is to LOUD!” ~ Terri Guillements

“The Arctic expresses the sum of arcticall wisdom; SILENCE.” ~ Walter Bauer

“Honk if you hate NOISE POLLUTION!” ~ Author unknown…seen on a bumper sticker. 🙂

“I take it that, what all men are reallyarctic6 after, is some form of, perhaps only some formula of Peace. ” ~ James Conrad

“True Silence is rest of the mind, it is to the spirit what sleep is to the body, nourishment and refreshment.” ~ William Penn


Women are not only busy and loving mom’s, they are gourmet cooks, expertise budget planners, insightful and clever grocery shoppers, creative bakers, respected and admired at their jobs, (whether at home or in an office,) wives and partners, the keeper of all the pets the kids ‘promised’ they would take care of, 🙂  landscapers, gardener’s,  errand runners, nurturers, someones best friend, housekeepers, a gym buddy and beautifully talented in their God given gifts. With all that we do as women, don’t you think we deserve a place of our own, some time to our selves to rejuvenate, think and enjoy the things that bring us pleasure and  felicity in our cozy, quite corner?  If we do not take the time for ourselves, we will never have it…It is a gift , a present we give to ourselves and in the long run, to all those we love… (as we are better people when we nourish, pamper and  strengthen ourselves.)


All in a Woman’s “Day of work!”  🙂

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Let’s begin our cozy and quite corners, ‘just for the ladies,’ TOUR!

Ah! The wondrous invention of the bath tub. It is definitely one of my most favored quiet places on earth… There is just nothing like a hot bubble bath to sooth your muscles and clear your mind. This  bathtub is especially alluring with it’s vintage, country-cottage style, dressed up with ivy and hints of serene nature. (Make sure you have your ‘Downey soft,’ luxurious bath towel awaiting you, along with your favorite bathrobe and slippers so you can continue to stay in that “pampered and relaxed state of mind.”  🙂

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These “cozy corners” are the perfect retreat . The voluminous chairs are not only comfortable but pleasing to the eyes… Both of these serene niches are blessed with sun lit windows and a quaintness that immediately inspires you to sit, relax, read, write in your journal or work on your needlepoint pillow. Two entirely different styles of decor, but both perfect, for a relaxing get-away. This is an impeccable  place, that is set apart from the world, a place to gather all of your thoughts, ponder and bring your plans together.


What a beautiful, cozy  and cheerful spot to sneak off to. It’s serene colors of blue and white, amidst the large sun filled window, and motley throw pillows is perfect for an afternoon snooze, listening  to your favorite, soothing music on your ipod earphones, or working on your monthly calendar. It’s also nice because it gives you an ‘instant’ footstool… 🙂


The beauty of nature, a sensational breeze, your beloved porch swing, (Well, actually, in this photograph, it is your “tree swing.” 🙂  the fresh air amidst the warmth of the sun are  all perfect ingredients for a few hours repose of pure nourishment and rejuvenation to both your body and soul! cc19

You’ve heard it said that what we surround ourselves with, creates and effects our mood…This cozy corner is not only royal, courtly and fetching, its like time traveling back to another era….Sitting here, with the bright light and warmth of the sunshine flowing through  the window, with a great book, would be eminently relaxing and soothing to the soul.  (If you could stay awake long enough!) 🙂


A woman’s desk is another place of bliss… with your signature style and color choices, its your creative  sui generis nook, the one place that holds a myriad of cherished treasures from your heart…your journals, favored novellas, photographs framed in your unique decor style, an antique pen from one of your wondrous travels, a vintage lamp, fresh writing papers, elegant address book filled with all the people you love, (the old and the new,) and a delightful scented candle, filling your home with a sweet and ambrosial aroma.   It’s your place to dream, think, reflect and plan…My desk is truly like an, old and very faithful, loving friend. 🙂


This beautiful, serene alcove is equipped with everything you could possibly need… (except the foot stool.) 🙂 With it’s gorgeous sun filled window view, fresh flowers, ethereal candle,esthetic comfy pillow and novel… you are all set to enjoy your felicitous hours of ‘alone time and quite calm.’ I love the built in shelf for all of your treasured folios of adventures.


These two cozy corners are not only beckoning the soul to come to a place of reprieve, they are engaging, inviting and blissful. Whether being inside on an brisk, autumn afternoon, relaxing in this sightly and cozy vintage chair, or enjoying the sounds of the sea and the nostalgic  aroma of the fresh briny air on your playful and winning  hammock, both places are sure to bring forth refreshment and  give your body and mind a ‘recharge.’ 🙂


Talk about color! If color is mood changing and great for your mind, body and soul, just sitting here should bring forth a ‘revival’ to your entire being! 🙂 This niche is absolutely stunning and cozy…You would certainly catch me here every morning to embrace the warm sunlight, cozy pillows, the chromatic colors and the pure ambiance of charm and pizzazz. (One of my favorite  ‘niches’ so far! 🙂 )


Your garden is another beautiful place of retreat and revivify . Whether it is a classy, refined wrought iron bench with soft, enlivening pillows or a wicker rocking chair, sitting in the midst of your gorgeous fresh flowers, ‘blooming like there is not tomorrow,’ taking in the wondrous scents of nature and again, the fresh and healthy sunshine, are restorative gifts just within themselves. This would be the perfect place to do your menu planning, grocery list and “to-do” schedule. 🙂 Mornings in my garden are always a “dilly-dallying affair.” 🙂


Another ‘two favorites of mine… 🙂  Both of these spectacular and warm , cozy sitting areas are exquisite. I can’t decide which ambiance is more desirable… I adore the English Garden corner with it’s luscious floral fabric, fresh flowers, cherished antique photographs, and Batten-burg lace covered table, (with  plenty of room for a cup of chamomile tea or a hot cappuccino.) 🙂 The calming blue and whites amongst the sylvan ambiance is hard to turn down as well… Maybe I would  just  have create two cozy, quiet corners in my home… 🙂

Decadent, royalty, impressive and sublime! This is a gorgeous place of reprieve!


This little corner looks fresh out of the country… cozy, lived in and a fun! With it’s great amenity of the sunlit window, working on that crocheted baby blanket would be ideal! 🙂


It’s hard for us as times, to think of our bedrooms as a retreat, but truly, they are one of the most wondrous places to rejuvenate our bodies and soul, within our entire home. You don’t have to have your  pajamas on to prop yourself up on your multi- pillowed bed with it’s soft eiderdown comforter, light a candle and grab your laptop to work on the next chapter of your novel,  or write a long letter to your best  friend overseas…It’s the perfect place to recharge…Especially this particular style of room with it’s colossal  paned windows, abundance of sunshine and pure, crisp shades of white! It almost looks as if the relished ocean is only minutes away, with its bethnic and vintage decor style.


An antiquated, vintage and shabby chic, cozy corner …very inviting and comfy! I love the pleasing color pallet of  the soft hues of rose and powder blue with the accent of pastel green…very soothing. There is nothing quite  like your favorite chair on “the front porch” for your coveted place of “me time.” Especially if your porch looks like this one! 🙂 (Bright and cheery.)


OK…I see new competition for a “favored” blissful getaway. 🙂  How could you not adore this beautiful and elegant place of reverie? It  embodies everything for quieting the soul…soft colors, a breathtaking view and  a stunning and picturesque sitting area. This room  exudes the very meaning of the word “CHARM.” It’s definitely on the top of my list.


Yoga on the front porch! I have never tried this art, but from I hear, it brings more rejuvenation and peace of mind than any medication a doctor can prescribe for anxiety!  🙂

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Another timeless and enchanting place to ‘re-awaken’ your mind, body and soul. I adore the color pallet of the soft roses, butter cream whites,  hushed yellows, amidst the muted greens and blues. It would take a lot to get me off of  this cozy and comfy couch! 🙂


A delightful and cheery craft room, “Just for you.” If I had one of these in my homes, it would be much more than a few hours of repose...I’d get carried away… 🙂  If you have an extra room in your home to bring forth an imaginative place to create all the lovely things you adore, ( sewing, creating new fashion, painting, graphic art, using your lifesaving glue gun for designing and bringing forth stellar topiary trees, seasonal wreaths or whatever your ‘craft of choice’ is, then make this room all yours...your decor style, color scheme and architectural design… spend as much time as you can doing what you love most!   🙂    This room would be a luxury and a place of restoration, undoubtedly bringing you back into a place of peace and serenity in your busy, sometimes hectic life.


Yes, you are correct, if you guessed this is a cozy, quite corner from Mary Engelbreit! Adorned in her unique, original style of fire engine reds, crisp whites, regal blacks with the amicable accents of rose and yellow… I feel a bit rejuvenated, just looking at this room! 🙂


Sitting  within your lovely garden brings rebirth and clarity to your mind , but working in a garden is an entirely different kind of repose.  It’s not only nurturing, peaceful, a time of concentration and creating beauty, but it revitalizes you on every level! I love this homemade scarecrow! 🙂


Not many of us are blessed with an ocean view outside of our lovely havens. If you do have a resplendent veranda with a view of the blissful and mysterious sea, this would, of course be the PERFECT, quiet place of retreat for you… I can’t imagine a more peaceful ambiance… I would dress up this porch with and abundance of fresh flowers in a myriad of esthetic colors form my local florist or a quaint country boutique like this one, where you can pick up fresh cut flowers… (and maybe even a hot cappuccino for the road.) 🙂


This cozy sitting area has a head start as it is festooned for the Glorious Christmas season. I love the yellow and white color combination, the natural hard wood flooring along with the simplicity of this relaxing ambiance.  The adorable  miniature white picket fence, fireplace screen, steals the room. 🙂  I can easily picture this sitting area to be a favored place, blessed with a convivial ambiance in the winter months, enjoying the felicity of a warming fire and hot mulled cider.


For the more formal tastes… This exquisite and commanding room with its inviting corner is certainly a delightful and enticing reprieve. I have always doted upon vaulted ceilings and the authenticity and awesomeness of a room with a breathtaking  Crown-molding finish. (It reminds me of my southern heritage.) Absolutely gorgeous!


This period piece of  furniture is exceedingly  comfortable and it makes for a unique and splendid sitting area… I love it’s simplicity and august style.

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Another sublime, par-excellence ambiance for an afternoon of pure pleasure, reading your  suspenseful novella, a devotional, knitting a  candy apple red scarf for your dog, or listening to calming music on your ipod… I love the cozy fire, the enchanting wallpaper, the antiquated style of furniture with a delightful table dressed for a fancy afternoon Tea with your favorite Tea set.  Now that is pampering! 🙂


No matter how many corners you have in your lovely home, it will be your design and accessories that create the beauty your soul is longing for. These two niches below are as different as night and day, yet both esthetic to the eyes and spirit… I can easily see one for the winter  and autumn months and the other for spring and summer. Both are prestigious, baronial, regal and refined… Remember to surround yourself with beauty and the things you love most! 🙂 This is YOUR PLACE!


Lastly, two more diverse yet inviting little alcoves to treat your body and soul to a “makeover.” 🙂 The over sized white chair with the blue decorative pillows is absolutely cordial, amicable and chipper. (Another chair that I would find it hard to ever leave…it looks so comfy!) 🙂 The other corner is formal, evokes emotions of being coddled and is so graceful and majestic. It is all a matter of your tastes.

When you discover where that special place will be and decide how you want it to look, here are some ideas of the things you can do, (in your quiet, cozy corner,) to bring forth an abundance of peace,relaxation, rejuvenation and pure, JOY! REMEMBER to take time just for you…to replenish and restore your mind body and soul… and don’t forget Mr. Charles Buxton’s insightful quote from above; ” You will never find time for anything. If you want time, YOU MUST MAKE IT! ” 🙂

Light and enjoy some ambrosial  scented candles. Not only will it sooth your soul but it will evoke happy thoughts and memories.


This one says it all! 🙂 Play one of your favorite, calming CD’s on your CD player, put your earphones on, take a snooze and just close your eyes to the world around you!


Treat yourself to a healthy, delicious snack or “go for the chocolate decadent confection!” 🙂 It depends on the Restoration your in need of that day. 🙂


Read your favorite magazines or call your best girl friend who lives across the United states.


Bring out your laptop in it’s tapestry holder and “surf the internet”, read interesting articles or work on your autobiography! 🙂


Crochet that special little hat for your niece or write a few entries in your beloved, private journal! If you are a writer, bring our your notebook and begin jotting down your ideas for your plots, characters and picturesque settings for your new story.


Bring out your elegant needlepoint for that pillow you have in mind for the spring season or your knitting needles and yarn for the baby blanket your creating  for your sisters new arrival.:)


Enjoy reading your beloved novels written by your favorite author or treat yourself to a cup of freshly brewed specialty coffee with some real, fresh whipped cream and fancy cookies! 🙂


Serve yourself a pampering, afternoon tea! Dress your table with some fresh flowers from the garden and revel in the savory and delicious aromas of brewed lemon ginger tea and fresh roses.  Its a great place as well to look up new recipes for your gourmet cooking collection, hearty casseroles or fresh new, creative salads.


Listen to your favored music…whether it is opera or R&B….(whatever relaxes you.) 🙂  For some it is the melodic reposes of Andrea Bocelli and for others, the soulful and dreamy falsetto voice of Usher. If by chance, you feel like dancing…dance your heart out in your beloved niche. 🙂


If you do end up creating a craft room, or already have one, enhance your skills with making a seasonal wreath…(It’s funny, whenever I take out my glue gun, I find a hundred things around  the house that need it’s attention. 🙂   I find that when I am  busily gluing and creating, my mind  and spirit is at  total peace, fixing, perfecting, bringing forth new beauty and color, and when I look at the clock and see that an hour has gone by, I am in unbelief.) It’s so relaxing to create! Another restorative thing for our bodies and soul…DAY DREAMING! Whether its dreaming about your new ideas for your home decor, or of other lands, it’s not only relaxing but gives you a “wondrous body and mind lift.” 🙂


In closing,  pamper yourself with a glass of wine, some gourmet cheeses, or a very formal, and fancy afternoon Tea, served with fresh chocolate scones and delicious , sweet strawberries.


ENJOY your new Cozy, quiet and restorative corner in your home… If you build it…YOU will come! 🙂


Scrolling over any of  the photos or graphics will tell you where they came from.

*** To learn about the links and their purpose on Living Winsomely, please see the blog on “WE NOW HAVE LINKS!”

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A Father’s Day to Remember!



THE DISTINGUISHED QUOTE CORNER: Adorable Baby Boy in Suit on Cellphone

“A truly rich man is one whose children run into his arms when his hands are empty.” ~ Author Unknown

“A Father carries pictures where his money used to be.” 🙂 ~ Author Unknown

“It is much easier to become a father than to be one.” ~ Kent Nerburn

“Any man can be a father. It takes someone special to be a DAD.” ~ Author Unknown

“Old as she was, she still missed her daddy sometimes.” ~ Gloria Naylor

“My daddy, he was somewhere between God and John Wayne.” ~ Hank Williams, Jr.

“Until you have a SON of your own…you will never know the joy, the love beyond feeling that resonates in the heart of a father as he looks upon  his son.” ~ Kent Nerburn


“There’s something like a line of gold thread running through a man’s words when he talks to HIS DAUGHTER, and gradually over the years, it gets to be long enough for you to pick up within your hands and weave into a cloth that feels like LOVE ITSELF.” ~ John Gregory Brown



Happy Fathers day! What a day of honor and celebration as our fathers are one of the most significant people we will ever have in our lives.  When you think about it, our dads were one of our very first peers that we tried to please and win over….we wanted them to be so proud of us as we grew up in this monumental, dubious and uncertain world. 🙂 Our dad’s were our hero, protector, our security and role model…(Gosh what a pressure job for him!) 🙂   For a young boy, his dad is his idol…he can never do enough to win the approval and acceptance from his father. For little girls, we don’t  know it then, but we will measure each man we meet by comparing them to our father…

There is such a wide range and variety of the relationships children have with their fathers. I have some girl friends in whom their father is, (or was,) their best friend, confidante, biggest fan and their first love. Other friends share a more formal, almost proper, decorous and satisfactory relationship with their dads and carry a deep respect for them, but do not have a close bond. I know of others who are indifferent with their fathers, but there is no question of their love for one another.  My husband was very close to his dad and it brought tears to my eyes at times to witness the love they shared.  It’s amazing to me how different the roles each of our parents play out in our lives…Both of them, whether together, apart, close to us or incurious at times, are a huge influence that in part, shape and mold us into the adults we become. (Wow…two more stressful and pressure filled occupations our parents carried.)  🙂

It’s funny…as a child, we basically already KNOW our moms are going to be in the audience at our school play, dance recital, in the bleachers at our baseball, soccer and football games…They are usually our nurturers and the peacemakers of our families. It’s so important for us to see our dads there as well. When we do see them, smiling as they wave to us, a sigh of relief floods our hearts and all we want to do is make them proud. The way I grew up, my mom was at home, (blessed to be a wonderful  homemaker, always available for her kids both physically and emotionally,) while my father worked many hours outside of the home, traveled and was oversees for 13 months in the Vietnam war. Many children go through “feeling” that their dads are absent, but in truth, they are loving their family by doing the jobs and duties put before them.

My mom and dad had eight children…first a girl, then four boys in a row. (Whew!) 🙂 They were praying for another little girl and the good Lord heard them as my mom got pregnant with twin girls.cathy I was one of those twins and I hear, we were the talk of the neighborhood in our blue and pink bonnets.   My twin died suddenly at eight months old…Of course, it was a dark time for all the family and how they got through it, I can’t fathom. When my mom lost my twin, (one of her treasured and long awaited baby girls,)  she protected me like a Mother hen with her chicks, (not wanting to lose me too.) We formed a very deep bond and  from that time forward…we were best friends, the “Two Musketeers” and close chums for life.  One of my cherished memories I will always remember about “my dad” is that He told me a million times, (OK, maybe a thousand) 🙂 “You are a fairy princess and so beautiful. One day, the boys will be lining up at the door for you, (I kept waiting for that part, and waiting…  🙂 )  and Susan, you can do and BE anything in life you want to be and desire.”  That’s what our dad’s do…encourage , stand by us, love us no matter what, always long for and wish for us the best and hope that we don’t move back home after we’ve grown up! :) (Just joshing.) (Well, kind of.)

In this blog, I want to both honor my father as well as share some ideas with you to bless your fathers’  big day, making it a day he will remember!

This is a beloved photo of my mom and dad welcoming their first baby, (a beautiful, healthy girl, Ginneye) into the world in 1946. (I bet they had no idea that seven more babies would be blessing their world in the not to far-away future.)


I was so honored  and proud to have my father walk me down the aisle on my wedding day! (I am not sure which one of us was more nervous…)  🙂 He also blessed my husband and I with a wondrous fairytale like wedding and reception…My Father loved to give.


My mom and dad were dressed to the hilt on this evening, as  they were getting ready to leave for  the Marine Corps Birthday Gala. He always looked so handsome in his uniform. My dad served in the United States Marine Corps, was a distinguished pilot and retired as a Lt. Col. He was a loyal, faithful man, loved his country and had a Brobdingnagian passion for flying. (Just bring up the subject of ‘his flying days,’ and his eyes lit up like stars in the sky on a clear, dark night.)


My father was a handsome man in his younger days as well as the autumn years of his life. He looked quite dapper all dressed up in his polished suit. His taste in clothes was impeccable and he always looked exceedingly classy.    (I always called him the man with the twinkling eyes.) This photo was taken on a very special and happy day in his life.


Lastly, I love this photo of our family celebration in Corona Del Mar for my dads  80th birthday… He adored  family gatherings.He was like a little kid during all the holidays, (especially Christmas,) and his face and entire countenance  would always brighten up when he was with the ones he loved! (Only five of his seven children were able to make it for this happy occasion.)


My dad was a refined man, loved and served God, adored his children and family, had a great sense of humor, teased like there was no tomorrow, was hard working, a good listener, gave out of the depths of his heart with no measure, (was baffled many a time by me and some things I did or believed in ) and we did not always understand each other, but, I always knew he loved me, and he knew I loved him. 🙂 I honor and thank him this Father’s day for all he did for our family and the place he held within our hearts, but mostly for his love and twinkling eyes that at times,  made everything seem like it was “right as rain.”

I completely connect with the delightful quote above from Gloria Naylor,

” Old as she was, she still missed her daddy sometimes.”

My father passed away during the Christmas holidays, two and a half years ago. I still, to this day, think of something I want to say or share with him, saunter towards the phone  and then remember, he is not here anymore…:) (Though somehow I know he looks down from heaven every now and then to check up on his loved ones…He was just that way!


WE, the kids… (No matter our age,) can create a day for our dads that will not only bless them but give them a KNOWING that they are loved and appreciated…

Start the day off with taking your dad out for a wondrous Sunday brunch…June is a beautiful month filled with lush green foliage, kaleidoscopic colors blooming everywhere and the air is usually not ‘to hot’ during this time of year. Out door brunches, whether homemade, or at one of his favorite eateries would be ideal, but I guarantee, he will feel just as pampered dining inside. While enjoying the savory cuisine, ask your dad questions about his life…maybe some things you never really knew about him…jobs he had when he  graduated from  high school, his first girlfriends name, what his favorite holiday is or what  one of the best years of his life was and why.  Let it be his day to shine!





When you arrive back home from brunch, tell him; “Dad, this day is yours….there is not a thing that you need to do today except to RELAX, HAVE FUN and ENJOY THE DAY.” You know what that means…There can be no “HONEY-DO LISTS!”  Not even one chore! 🙂 (FROM ANYONE…including the dog! )  🙂



Some special gift ideas that your dad may enjoy, again keeping with the theme of “It’s your day DAD,”  are creative, yet simple and will be a blessing to his body, soul, spirit and tummy! 🙂 I hope you can bless him with one of these notions.


How about mowing the lawn for him…? (Hopefully, if you your dad has a  large yard, he  owns a rider mower,) 🙂  but this is a very thoughtful idea and act of kindness that won’t cost you a  dime…Maybe a little perspiration and  a few calories. 🙂


If your father is a lover of music, (like my dad was,) pick him up a few of his favorite CD’s. It would be a great way to add some enjoyment to his ‘free day.’




Autobiographies or a great suspense novel are another enjoyable gift he could use on his revered and treasured day. It is such a treat for my husband to be able to have some free time to read...it is a rarity…. Books are a wonderful gift.



If your dad decides he would rather entertain his eyes, 🙂 ‘veg- out’  and save his reading for another time, bless him with some of his favorite movies…maybe sit down and watch one with him over a cold beer, glass of wine or a cappuccino accompanied by an ambrosial appetizer or two. (My father loved his Ice cold beer and  extra sharp, Cracker Barrel  Cheddar cheese.)





What is your dad’s favorite sport? Does he enjoy golfing? There is nothing like a brand  new set of golfing clubs for a golf lover…it’s like giving a child a big bag of candy! 🙂  Or, you could treat him to a game of miniature golf and enjoy one anther’s fellowship and the fresh sunshine together.



Movie passes are a great gift for a rainy day… ( The summer thunderstorms are right around the corner, and it would give him something to look forward to.)FD-48

Men love cologne… (OK, some men love cologne. 🙂 ) My father always wore Royal Lime and my husband adores Royal Musk! (They both are such refreshing fragrances for the summer!)



How about a gift certificate to “HONEY DO HELPERS” so your dad can have another free weekend! ( I didn’t even know such a company existed.)  What a great idea!



A creative and delicious gift would be to fill bottles or antiquated, embellished  glass jars  with your dads favorite candies or nuts… The candy filled jars are so colorful, (though definitely a Christmas theme in this photo,) but you could fill them with Jelly-Belly’s, M&M’s, Skittles, Red licorice sticks or brightly wrapped Dove chocolate candies to have the same colorful effect.  (I am getting hungry just thinking about it.)  🙂  A very festive idea and something your dad would probably never do for himself.



When you all have an ‘appetite’ again, (after your snacks and delectable brunch,)  a wonderful fathers day gift is to have the kids all chip in together and  bring all the preparations for a delightful BBQ.  If  you really want to get creative, give your dad an apron, a pot holder,chefs hat and homemade BBQ sauce along with all the fixings for  him to start his grilling adventure.  My husband, (whose nickname is the ‘Grill Master’,)  finds it very relaxing! A great menu for the evenings festivity would be New York strip steaks, vegetable kabobs, grilled potatoes and a freshly baked Sourdough baguette.





When the last steak has been devoured and the final potato nibbled upon, even if your dad is so full that he can only have a tiny sliver, another thoughtful and creative fathers day gift is to bake him a personalized cake. It will bless his heart so much to see all the trouble you have gone to as you present him with a cake that you have made from scratch that ‘speaks clangorously’  of something that he loves to do, or make a cake that you know is his very favorite.   (And he can always put the cake in the refrigerator and enjoy it during the week.) The cupcakes are winsome and are very easy to make…Just choose your theme and your half way there. 🙂





No matter how you celebrate your dad’s special day with him, just letting him know that you love and appreciate him, will give him a day to remember and feel honored. If you live across the country and are unable to spend a part of his day with him, you can always send him flowers, (real or edible,)  a card with your sentiments written upon it, or give him a call, planning a time to fly out and spend time together. It will make his day.

We are all blessed with the gift of what I call, “second dads.” (For some, it is the only real father they have ever known…)   Many people meet and bond with a father figure later in their life, (or for some, early on.) It could be a mentor,  a beloved coach, a step parent, a pastor, or just a dear friend that is like a dad to you in many ways…If you know someone in your life who holds that special place, send them a card, or give them a call, sharing how they have enriched and touched your life. (My husbands father was like my 2nd dad, as well as a pastor we once  had…)  2ND Dad’s are an Extra blessing in this life!:)


I hope this blog  has inspired you and given you  a few ideas  of ways you can bless your dad this June 16th!  Happy Fathers day to all of you seasoned fathers, as well as the ‘new dads’ and ‘dad’s to be.‘ OH, and if you are a father of a beloved dog, (some of us consider our dogs our children, 🙂 Happy Fathers day to you as well!

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MEN, SURPRISE the one you love with a romantic dinner for two.

“Would you like to know your future – If your answer is yes, think again. Not knowing is the greatest life motivator. So, enjoy, endure, survive each moment as it comes to you in it’s proper sequences, A SURPRISE!candles 3

I think being surprised is one of the most amazing experiences in our lives.  There are so many things in our days and weeks that are routine…fixing three meals, cleaning the house, mowing the lawn, laundry, our jobs, grocery shopping, etc…It’s funny, but I am a daily, weekly and monthly planner lady. 🙂  I just adore sitting at my serene desk,  with my coffee and making plans on paper.  I know everything that will happen that day and it is all written down in my book. 🙂  (I bet there are a lot of you out there, just like me.) 🙂 Whenever something out of the ordinary occurs, (not on our ready made lists,)  it is a beautifully wondrous, unexpected joy…It makes us smile, fills up our ‘hope tanks,’ and renews our hearts that ‘surprises’ still exist. 🙂 I was out of my favorite perfume but didn’t want my husband to know as it’s a little bit more on the expensive side…well, one day, he drove in around dinner time from a meeting in Lewes, and in his hands was a fetching perfume bag with my special fragrance inside. It was not only an ‘endearing surprise,’ but a grand blessing as it deeply touched me that he was so thoughtful in noticing I was out of the fragrance as well as going by the shop to buy it. It made my entire week! 🙂

THE DISTINGUISHED QUOTE CORNER: Adorable Baby Boy in Suit on Cellphone

“Love must be as much a light as it is a flame.” ~ Henry David Thoreau.

“There is no surprise more magical than the surprise of being loved . It is God’s finger on man’s shoulder.” ~ Charles Morgan

“Love one another and you will be happy. It is as simple and as difficult as that.” ~ Michael Leunig

“Love is not maximum emotion. Love is maximum commitment.” ~ Sinclair B. Ferguson

“…It’s a blessed thing to love and feel loved in return.” ~ E.A. Bucchianneri

“True love is not a potion one person can swallow and another refuse to drink. It only happens when the souls of two join together to form one.” ~ P.C. Cast

I am amazed at the diversity of ways that we can show our adoration and thoughtfulness to the people we love. Cooking delicious cuisine has always been an important part of my life. (OK, when I moved out of my folks home, into my first apartment and worked two jobs, I never cooked and did not eat healthy, 🙂 ) but there is just something about good food and breaking bread together that is so fulfilling!

In the book by Francis Mayes, “In Tuscany,” an Italian shares his thoughts on what food, (exquisite food,) means to the the people of Italy. (I love his philosophy.) 🙂 “Food is the sun: family, work, friends, the day to day, the extraordinary all in orbit like planets.” There is order in the universe when someone says; “Lets eat.” Italian’s celebrate everything with  robust , flavorful cuisine and some of their fetes and gala’s are celebrations of just the food itself.


What better gift can you give to that special someone in your life than sweet and savory flavors, a warm, gladsome  ambiance, delicious wine and bread, and mellifluous tones to uplift the soul?  (It will always be remembered as an enchanting evening of convivial enjoyment.)

Create  this evening  to be an unforgettable night…surprise the one you love with a homemade, (yes, I said homemade) dinner for two. I have all the “fixings” for you from start to finish. One of the nicest things in life is the element of surprise…So, if there is anyway possible for you to do this secretly, and present it as a complete  ‘marvel and amazement,’ for your loved one,  that would be ideal!

Are you ready to get started? This evening’s meal is a meal that can be prepared early enough for you to leave the Stroganoff on the stove top and fresh greens and shrimp in the  refrigerator, (the bread can be warming about the time they walk in the door, (the aroma will be out of this world.)

G-23Your menu for the evening is quite the crowd- pleaser… (though your only going to be  pleasing one! ) 🙂 (Make sure you check out the end of this blog to “get directions” to your recipes and ingredients needed for the  evening’s cuisine.)

APPETIZER : Fresh shrimp cocktail (served with lemon slices,) accompanied with a chilled glass of sparkling cider .

FIRST COURSE :  Caesar salad with croutons and Parmesan cheese, hot sour dough baguette with butter.

MAIN COURSE : Beef Stroganoff served over  buttery egg noodles.

DESSERT: Haagen-dazs  Vanilla  Swiss almond ice cream with homemade fudge sauce, topped with whip cream .

WINE : I recommend Toasted Head Merlot or Chardonnay…Both excellent wines.

Creating the picture-book ambiance for your captivating and romantic evening is just as important as your menu. Bring forth an ambient atmosphere that is striking to the eyes and pampering to the senses…

Music can enhance your room with melodic reverie and bring froth a soothing, bliss filled  evening. While dining with your appetizer and redolent two courses, I suggest listening to Shardad, ‘The beauty of love’ or  Josh Grobin’s, Live in concert as well as Live at the Greek. All of of these CD’s are quieting , dreamy and will most assuredly relieve any stresses of the day!


 The ambiance of your home, sets the tone for the night…When your special lady walks through the door, have a myriad of candles burning…Perhaps one candle that is scented, (the essence of what ever season of the year it is, ) and then a potpourri of unscented tea lights, (In creative votives) or small round candles,  burning amidst your dining and living room. This will enrich and heighten her first impression of the evening as well as bring forth an awesome aroma throughout the night. (Flickering , glistening candles are very romantic! )  🙂

candle lightchristmas-candles

The table that you create for your dinner will be the center of attention, so make it a beautiful one…It’s up to you, a more formal table with nice china, linen napkins and  ornate silverware or, a comfortable, more casual setting with your everyday china, silverware and cotton napkins. Either way you chose, remember to always adorn the table with fresh flowers and classy taper or pillar candles… (Fresh flowers dress up a table like nothing else and as women, we love that added touch!) 🙂

These table settings below are your more casual settings…Very lovely, comfortable and cozy!


These ‘Tableau’s” beneath are more on the formal side…Fresh , crisp linens always dress up a table, especially in shades of soft whites. ( I love the yellow roses!)


If the weather is beautiful and not to chilly, Alfresco dining is also another option. That can be formal or informal as well. (I adore these romantic settings!) 🙂

G-8garden dining

Another special touch is placing an embellishing and charmingly wrapped gift at the front of her table setting. It does not need to be extravagant….perhaps a striking, decorative writing pen, a Yankee scented candle, two movie passes to a near by theater, a  gift card to her favorite eatery, a popular CD or DVD that you know she loves.


When she arrives, have a glass of chilled Sparkling cider for her as well as the colorful, delicious appetizer. Allow some time to unwind, (both of you ) 🙂 and enjoy the aroma of all the flavors dancing around your home.  (You will find that by the time you sit down to dinner, both of your appetites will be more voluminous and the small wait will be worth it.) 🙂 Allow the contentment to mount up as you both await and imagine that first, mouthwatering bite of salad and the scrumptious beef Stroganoff.


When you serve the first course,  the Casar salad , toss it right before you place it on the plates and bring along side of it, the delectable, hot sourdough baguette and  creamy butter. Now it’s time to open a nice bottle of wine…for this meal I suggest “Toasted Head Merlot.” It is an excellent wine with the Stroganoff and goes nicely with fresh greens as well. If you are a white wine drinker, the Toasted Head Chardonnay is quite delicious as well. If you do not drink at all, then stick with your sparkling,ice cold cider or fresh Raspberry tea. 🙂


Now , (Drum roll please….) it is time to serve up your main meal. When I serve Beef Stroganoff , I usually stir it together before I serve it, but you may want to place your hot , buttery noodles on the plate and spoon the heated sauce on top, right  before you place it on the table. It is a hearty dish and very satisfying! (It’s what my husband and I call a “comfort meal.”)  🙂


As your stomachs are full  and you are both feeling very relaxed , I recommend going into the living room, perhaps having another glass of wine or fresh coffee… (With some of that whipped cream you have for the hot fudge sundaes.)  🙂  If you both are up for it, watch a “girl movie” together… Four wonderful and romantic movies we have enjoyed  together are Bridesmaids, P.S. I love you, New Years Eve and The Holiday.   Bridesmaids is exceedingly  funny… the other three are quite romantic. (All the films have an excellent cast of stars as well!)



About half way through the movie, bring out your delicious ice cream with hot fudge sauce… Maybe some flavored decaf coffee… NOW, JUST ENJOY AND RELAX.


I hope that this evening blesses you both and that it exceeds your expectations! Enjoy, relax, HAVE FUN and leave the dishes for the morning! 🙂

**This dinner is listed in the “Unforgettable Recipes” category under the title; ” Beef Stroganoff and all the fixings.” You will find all the ingredients, recipes and how I prepare this meal at our home. Happy creating and cooking! Let me know how it turns out! 🙂

CREDITS for PHOTOGRAPHS: If you place your computer mouse over any of the the photos or graphics, it will display where it originated from.


when a woman loves a man.


Has there ever been such a profound, boundless, passionate and enduring love in the movies like Babara Streisand and Robert Redford’s relationship in the film, “The Way we were?”  I remember seeing that movie at the theater when I was in High school and it really moved me…(exhausted me,) but it is certainly a classic. (Talk about a crush, yearning, adoration and fervor?) They had it all…:)

THE DISTINGUISHED QUOTE CORNER Adorable Baby Boy in Suit on Cellphone

“My lifetime listens to your yours.” ~ Muriel Ruckeyser

“Every time you smile at someone, it is an action of love, a gift to that person, a beautiful thing.” ~ Mother Teresa.

“Kind words can be short and easy to speak but their echoes are truly endless.” ~ Mother Teresa

“All I am saying is kindness don’t have any boundaries,” ~  Kathryn Stockeret from “The help.”

“There is no surprise more magical  than the surprise of being loved, it is God’s finger on man’s shoulder.” ~ Charles Morgan


When I wrote the blog, ‘When a man loves a woman,’ sharing ideas with the men , some creative ways, they could demonstrate their love for you, (their special lady,)  with acts of kindness, I promised I would write a blog for all of you ladies out there as well…So here are some ideas for you ladies of how to show that “Man of yours” how much you love him.


Everyone shows there ‘love,’ just  in diverse ways…we all have our own love language. The longer I have been married to my husband,  I know all the things that will bring him assurance of how very much I love him. We all need those reminders everyday in this crazy, hectic world, and don’t forget that every act of kindness we do, can’t help but boomerang right back to us .

Here are some ideas of “acts of kindness” to show your man just how much you adore him.

Surprise him and mow the lawn one afternoon when he thinks he has to do it that upcoming weekend. He will sigh with relief and be so happy!

Take the trashes out…especially when it is snowing. 🙂

Prepare one of his favorite, delectable snacks for when he arrives home after work. If he works at home, take his appetizer into him in the 5’clock hour, giving him a short reprieve and delightful visit with you. My husband loves Brie cheese and crackers. Hickory farms has a winning array of snacks, great cheeses, sausages, crackers, etc…  B-7

Ask how his day was? If he is a bit tense, give him a shoulder and neck rub.

Surprise him! While he is gone, clean his study and light one of his favorite scented candles. (Yankee Candles now offers “man scent” candles. 🙂

Buy him a gift card to his favorite outlet shop, men’s clothing or electronics store. (If you give him the gift card, he’ll use it…if you surprise him with the cash, he will probably end up buying something for you.) 🙂

Bake his favorite dessert and place it on a fancy cake plate. (My husband adores homemade coconut carrot cake.)


Go to the gym with him every once in awhile. (Better yet, if you have the time, join the gym and go with him to work out as often as possible together.)

Tell him you love him in a ‘post it’ note where he will see it,  a card on his bed stand, a love note on your dining roombs506 chalkboard or leave a message on his phone at work.

Go shopping with him at his favorite stores, then treat him to a nice lunch out!

Really listen when he is sharing about a book he is interestedB-12 in reading. Ask him questions about it. Then, order the book for him, letting the gift of it’s arrival surprise him as he goes to the mailbox one day.


Give the dog a bath so he can put his feet up and take an hour or two, serene repose, listening to his favorite music on his ipod, or snoozing in his new hammock that you surprise him with. 🙂


Yes, he is the ‘grill-master,’ but take an evening and surprise him by grilling him his favorite steak or fresh tuna.

If you are a praying person, pray for him when he is frustrated, feeling down or overwhelmed.

Surprise him with a baronial and handsome coffee mug or thermal cup, along with some robust  delicious coffee beans…(Great for fresh coffee or a cappuccino.)

Write him a ‘hand written’ letter on some classy stationary and share with him how much you adore, love and appreciate him.


Make a scrapbook ‘just for him.’ Perhaps a book on your courtship, wedding and all the years following… (Photos of friends, family, babies, children and pets.) Keep the book on going with add-on pages. As you continue to grow older together, add photos of your grand kids and all the  wondrous, new memories you two will make long the way. To make the book extra special, create them with scrap booking accessories. (It makes the album more personal.) 🙂


Do not forget to tell him how exceedingly handsome he is and that he is STILL your first pick, love of your life and ‘Numero Uno.’


Impress him with some new sportswear…my husband loves getting new athletic socks, gym shorts and he can never have enough T-shirts. 🙂

Pick up an ambrosial pastry for him for his Sunday breakfast.B-20

Put on your gardening gloves and do the weeding in the yard and garden for him… (You know  he is going to do it if you don’t.) 🙂

Stop off on your way home and surprise him with his favorite new movie. Watch it with him and “be there,” really partaking in this special time with him. ENJOY!!!


Lastly, cuddle up and hold each other when you are heading off to ‘slumber -land.’ 🙂

Additional Links:

Men’s Watches

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*** If you would like to learn about the purpose of the newly added links within Living Winsomely, read the blog “WE NOW HAVE LINKS.”

When a man loves a woman…..


Piglet sidled up to Pooh from behind. “Pooh!” he whispered.  “Yes Piglet?” “Nothing.” said Piglet, taking Pooh’s paw. “I just wanted to be sure of you.” ~ A.A. Milne

I love this writing about Pooh and Piglet as it says a lot in very few words. We all just need ‘to be sure of’ someone’…a sureness they will be there, love us and stand by our side… It is a beautiful thing to have!

“We are each of us angels with only one wing. And we can fly only by embracing each other.” ~ Luciano de Crescenzo

Ah the things a man does when he is in love with ‘his woman.’ Here are some creative ways to put your love into action to SHOW her just how much you adore and care for her.

Create a visceral response in her heart. Surprise her and serve her breakfast in bed.  (We love a  red rose on the breakfast tray as it makes us feel pampered and romanced.) breakfast in bed

Cook her a ‘feast imbued with romance.’ Secretly, buy all the ingredients, do all the preparation, create her favorite cuisine, use the best china and crystal,  display a myriad of candles and then, (big drum roll please), clean up all the dishes as she watches her favorite TV show.


Give her a foot massage, neck rub or shoulder and back massage. Facials are a great way for women to relax as well. (Maybe surprise her with her favorite romantic CD.) 🙂

Take the trashes out, and often. (Especially when it is snowing!) 🙂

Surprise and Kidnap her, taking her to her favorite eatery. Do it right around the 5 o’clock hour when she is beginning to prepare dinner. (Also, make sure  it is on one of her good hair days…) (Sorry guys, but that really does matter to us.) 🙂

Take her on a spontaneous walk amongst the romantic moonlight, bringing a long two chutes of sparkling champagne or cider.


Pour her a  rhapsodic, lavender bubble bath along with warm, fresh bath towels set out and flickering candles, creating ‘just the right light.’ (A glass of chardonnay and fresh flowers are a nice touch too.)Z-98On your way home from an errand, surprise her and pick up two topiary trees for the porch, or any items she has an affinity for… Running shoes, Dove chocolates, a brand new set of cookware, a Alexandra Stoddart book on “living beautifully” or her favorite magazines.  Z-97Write her a letter of your appreciation, love and devotion to her. (By hand and not on the computer.) 🙂

letter writingBless her with fresh flowers for no reason at all…she will be in a heavenly repose.Z-93Pick up a bottle of her favorite perfume. Put a little dab behind her ears and tell her how good she smells.

Honor and esteem  her in front of all your friends by the things you speak about her while she is present.

If your “woman” is a writer or avid reader, surprise her with some blithesome stationary or a Kindle. (I adore my kindle and it was one of my “most impressive and memorable” Christmas gifts last year.)

Ask her to take a walk with you…hold hands, take time just for her.

Secretly buy her that one “Chic Flick” she keeps talking about and surprise her on a Friday night with a Pizza and movie night.

Give the dog a bath so she can have some quiet time to read her novel.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIf you are a praying person, pray for her when she is hurting.

Bring her home a new Teddy bear. (We never outgrow those you know?) 🙂

Z-94Call her ‘just to say,’ “I love you.”

Be demonstrative with your love…give her a loving and tender neck rub when she tenses up, a kiss on the cheek, a big, long hug and a smile for no reason.

Tell her every day that she is still your very first ‘pick’, “YOUR NUMERO UNO” and  BEAUTIFUL. (We forget otherwise.) 🙂

Applaud  and praise a thoughtful act that she does.

Attend and hearken to her words…( I know women have the need to talk and process their thoughts with approximately 20,000 words a day and men, not feeling that  same need, approximately 500…) But try!…(I know it is a lot of listening but a little bit of effort goes a long way.)

Add to her repertoire of books…maybe  a new devotional, an autobiography, decor book, journal, good mystery novella,and of course, romance novels. book collection

I hope these ideas inspire you, or at least some of them. ” You can never be kind  and thoughtful without it  boomeranging  right back to you.” 🙂


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

***To learn about the links and their purpose on Living Winsomely, please see the blog; “WE NOW HAVE LINKS!”