Monthly Archives: March 2017


Fun Stuff for Friday

March 31, 2017, posted by Gina – It’s another Friday and we have some fun stuff to share with you.

One Man’s Trash Is Another Man’s Treasure
This past weekend I had the opportunity to search for treasures in an antique mall. I was not looking for anything in particular, but came across these mint julep cups. They needed so much TLC that I wondered if I could bring them back to life. The weight and quality were good, so I decided to take a chance. After about 10 minutes of scrubbing I actually brought them back to their glory days and look forward to using them soon. A fun side note is that you can use these versatile silver cups many different ways. I attended a luncheon a few years ago and the soup course was served in these pretty little cups. They are also perfect for small flower arrangements. How about you? Do you like the challenge of hunting for treasures or do you prefer the easy accessibility of buying new items?

What’s up, Doc?
I spied this cute rabbit on the side of the road and found myself turning around to take a photo. This rabbit began its life as an ordinary hay bale and I just loved how some creative person turned him into this little guy.

Sliver of Light
One evening this past week I was at my kitchen window cleaning up dinner dishes when I looked up and saw this unusual sight. At first glance it may look like a regular photo of scenery but it was taken during a thunderstorm at dusk. The one small spot of light you see was as bright as a light bulb while the rest of sky was cloudy and dark. It was so striking I just had to share it with you.

Bumper Sticker Love
The other day I saw this bumper sticker and it certainly made me think. Sometimes I think we believe that to make a difference we must do something grand but maybe this simple directive is all it takes.

Flower Power
I saw these J/Slides Rally Lace Up Floral Espadrille Sneakers and can’t get them out of my mind. I mean, floral shoes would be so perfect for someone who loves flowers as much as I do. I’ll let you know if these babies end up at my front door.

Have a great weekend and enjoy the beautiful spring weather! If you’d like to leave a comment, just click on the title of this post and the comment form will appear at the bottom of the page.


Monday Moods and Manners: 3 Tips on Responding to Emails

March 27, 2017, posted by Gina – It’s just another Manners Monday! This time around we’re discussing one of our pet peeves: not responding to emails. Have you ever sent an email asking a question or requiring action and suddenly you feel like Adele singing ‘Hello’? You wait for a response and even a few days go by and still nothing, nada, nunca! We get it. Everyone is busy and inundated with unwanted emails. It gets exhausting just trying to sift through the ad emails to get to the personal emails. Be that as it may, it does not give any of us an excuse for not replying to personal or business emails. Before cell phones became appendages it was more common for people to take a few days to check and respond to emails. However, these days we are more connected than ever so it would seem it should be easier to communicate.

Manners to consider when responding to emails.

All of this had us wondering if Emily Post had anything to say about emails. Well, it seems Emily Post’s Etiquette, 17th Edition by Peggy Post addresses this topic. It’s no surprise (even obvious) that junk mail, commercial spam and forwards can be ignored. We would never have time to open and read anything else at the rate these things pop up in our inboxes. Here’s what they have to say about real emails from colleagues and friends:

1. You should always respond to a real message, whether it’s an invitation, a meeting notice or a hello from a friend.
2. It also suggests that you check your emails a few times each day which allows you to respond in an orderly and timely fashion.
3. And finally, 1-2 days is the recommended timeframe in which to respond.

Now, it’s understandable that from time to time we all miss an email or are unsure if we can attend an event. But responding to an email in a timely way is a very considerate action. It lets the sender know that you appreciate their invitation or message and you are aware that their time is valuable too. Even if you are not able to give a definitive answer within a couple of days it’s still acceptable to email a response such as, ‘Thank you for the invitation. I will check with John and let you know by this Friday if we can attend.’

Think of how frustrating it would be to for someone who sent out invitations for a dinner party and only received a few responses. Being unsure of how many guests would attend, they’d be in limbo as to how to proceed with the planning. We could go on, but we know our readers are smart and polite.

Let us know your thoughts. Do you have any emailing or texting pet peeves? Do you have some helpful tips? Please click on the title of this post to leave us a comment.


Spring Engagement Party 4 comments

March 25, 2017, posted by Gina – I recently helped host an engagement party for a friend’s daughter and fiancé. It was a lovely occasion and everyone had such a wonderful time. The duties of the party were spread among eight hosts which made it so much easier to manage. My task for the party was to create the flower arrangements. I made one main large centerpiece and flanked it with two smaller coordinating arrangements. I was told the bride to be loved pink and so pink flowers it was! I used roses, fuji mums and gerbera daisies and, in the centerpiece, pussy willow which gave the arrangement height as well as additional texture and interest.

Centerpiece for an engagement party - roses, gerbera daisies and fuji mums

The food was delicious and I would share some of the recipes if I had them but I did not prepare any food for this party. I at least want to share the menu though, as it may come in handy if you find yourself planning such a party. And of course, I am sharing plenty of photos of this delectable and beautiful buffet.

Cheese, nut, fruit and cracker tray  – This was quite the spread. In fact, I think the tray was about four feet long which made a very dramatic presentation! Everyone commented on how beautiful this was.
Marinated Shrimp  – The marinated shrimp were delicious and looked so appetizing in a wonderful McCarty bowl.
Grilled Pork Tenderloin with rolls, mayo, Dijon and pepper jelly  – These were tender and succulent.
Potato Casserole – The potatoes were the perfect compliment with the grilled pork tenderloin and were creamy and hearty.
Grilled Vegetables  – The vibrant colors were so attractive and this dish really delivered with such intense flavor.
Petit Fours – These dainty cakes were very moist and the touch of gold (rings, how sweet!) put them over the top.

Buffet for an engagement partyPetit Fours for an engagement party - topped with little gold rings


Fun Stuff on Friday

March 24, 2017, posted by Gina – Hello Friends! This is the fourth installment of Fun Stuff on Friday where we write about anything that happens to be on our minds or has caught our fancy over the past week.

Baseball

As we head into this glorious weekend, I have all things Spring on my mind. We will be watching Son 2 play a bit of baseball. For a Mom with two boys who started playing baseball when they were four, the sport has always been one of the bellwethers of Spring in our family. I saw a cute and clever baseball fan T-shirt the other day that read, “I like a little dirt on my diamond.” And speaking of dirt…

Cutting Garden

I’ve been digging in the dirt a bit myself and I love it. Spring has made its way to my neighborhood and I just can’t seem to stay out of the yard. For as long as I can remember, I have always been interested in all kinds of gardens and how to plant them. I love pouring over gardening books and magazines for ideas and tips. This past week, I have been researching flowers that are good for a cutting garden. After all, at GDFC we are all about flowers so why not have a few posies to pick in my own yard? There’s so much to learn but I hope one day I’ll be able to show you the fruits of my labor. Stay tuned.

Photo saved from Beau Tied Affair on Etsy

Sentiment Bloom Be Cups

We spied these handmade glazed clay Bloom Be Cups in the Sundance Catalog and it was love at first site. These would certainly put a smile on your face or would make a great gift for a friend.

 

A Pretty 10

With all this gardening let’s just say my nails are not so pretty. In fact, almost every time we’ve have a nice event to attend recently, my nails look as if I have been doing hard labor. Well, I’m not sure floral design and gardening falls into that category but my nails look that way. I decided to schedule a weekly manicure because I know if I put something on my calendar I am more likely to do it. Last week, the lady that normally does my nails put something new on as a top coat and, believe it or not, my polish has lasted 6 days. For me, that is HUGE! How about you? Are you like me or do you already have a scheduled appointment? Or are you just not a nail person at all?
Thanks for stopping in and come back Monday when we discuss just what you do with all those endless emails that keep on coming. Have a Great Weekend!


Monday Moods and Manners

March 20, 2017, posted by Michelle – Spring is finally here but we’re no less moody this Monday. We hope our mood boards provide a little eye candy and inspiration for you!

1.Capiz Cube Candle Holders, lunabazaar.com  |  2. Dinosaur Designs Large Modern Tribal Platter,
bergdorfgoodman.com  |  3. Orange Artisan Crafted Hand Blown Glasses, novica.com  |  4.Straw Braided Edged Placemats, chairish.com  |  5. Images d’Orient Trivet, amara.com  |  6. Surya Forrestburg Baskets, zincdoor.com  |  7. Girard Paper Napkins La Fonda Sun, trouva.com  |  8. Greek Key Design Pillow and Grammercy Pillow by Beth Lacefield, burkedecor.com

 

1. Iittala Taika Serving Platter, shophorne.com |  2. Rigel Wool Rug, onekingslane.com  |  3. Kose Milano Short Palma Black and White Vase, artemest.com  |  4. Oslo Salad Servers by canvas, chapters.indigo.ca  |  5. Fornasetti ‘Burlesque’ scented candle, farfetch.com  |  6. Marimekko Unikko Tea Towel, davidjones.com.au  |  7. Missoni Home Safi 601 Cylinder Pouf, yliving.com

 

1. Two’s Company Hobnail Lanterns, lordandtaylor.com  |  2. Ceramic Blue Rose Candle Holders, chairish.com  |    3.Mexican Tree of Life Pottery Candelabra, chairish.com  |  4. Uttermost Candle Holder, build.com  |  5. Vintage Distressed Wood Candle Holders, chairish.com  |  6. Glass Goldfish Votive Candle Holders, chairish.com  |
7. Carthage Candleholder, zincdoor.com


Fun Stuff on Friday

March 17, 2017, posted by Gina – Well, here we are. Friday has rolled around again and we have a few fun things to share with you.

A IS FOR AZALEAS 


As we head into this last weekend of Spring Break, we are savoring every last minute of the beautiful blooming azaleas. They have been particularly pretty this year. We definitely give them an A! Just look at the entrance to my neighborhood. What a nice welcome!

THE BODEN BAG

I saw this bag in a recent Boden catalog and could not get it out of my mind. After a day of thinking of reasons why I should not order this bag, I ended up ordering it because I thought it would be fun as well as practical. I am loving the pink and red combo and the endless possibilities for using this bag. They have lots of color combinations and other great styles so you may want to browse through their catalog.

SPRING 2017 MILIEU

A few years ago a new home design magazine called Milieu was launched and we fell in love at first sight. We look forward to its arrival each season and devouring the stunning features. This magazine inspires us, gives us ideas for projects and just sparks our creativity. The current issue features some beautiful homes and gardens that transport you. If you like browsing through decor and design magazines then we highly recommend this one. So, grab a cup of coffee or tea, sit back, relax and be inspired. By the way, Milieu is pronounced, ‘meel-you’. On their site they explain,  “In Milieu, every story captures the look and feel, the mood and character, the style of a place – its milieu.”

EASTER DÉCOR 


I started to decorate for Easter with a few of my favorite pieces. I plan on continuing over the weekend and will show you more next week. How about you? Have you decorated for Easter or do you have plans to do so? We’d love to hear from you. If you’d like to leave a comment, click on the title of this post and the comment form will expand at the end of the page.


St. Patrick’s Day Menu

March 16, 2017, posted by Gina – Let’s have a little fun this St. Patricks day and make a memorable meal.

Here’s our menu:
Potato Bar  – Baked potatoes with lots of toppings to choose from; shredded cheese, butter, sour cream, bacon, green onions… the possibilities are endless.
Green Salad
Irish Dessert Bars


For the Baked Potatoes:
Preheat oven to 450°. Scrub potatoes until clean. Place them on a cookie sheet covered with aluminum foil. If you like a steamed texture, you can wrap your potatoes in foil but we prefer them without foil. Bake for 45 minutes to an hour. Test to see if they are fork tender. Top with all types of goodness.

Green Salad

We thought we would share one of our favorite basic green salads. We avoid buying bagged lettuce since fresh lettuce tastes so much better. There are a few exceptions, like a nice bagged Spring Mix, Spinach or Arugula. But our go-to salad is iceberg and green leaf combined with tomatoes, green or red onions and croutons. Simple and good. Lately, we are loving the Olive Garden salad dressing that you can now purchase in the store. It is delicious and you should give it a try.

And for dessert


Monday Moods and Manners

March 13, 2017, posted by Gina – Hello Friends! This is our second Monday Moods and Manners post. Last week we debuted with a couple of design mood boards and, as promised, this week we’re talking about manners. So much of entertaining revolves around manners that we decided we’d talk about them biweekly. We believe manners help us to be more kind and thoughtful and as a result our guests feel more comfortable and welcome. We don’t claim to be etiquette experts by any means and we’ll refer to Emily Post and others on certain manners. We’d like to hear your thoughts on manners as well, so please leave us your comments. With this in mind, let’s look at our first of many segments on manners.

When to Start Eating

Most every time we are with a group at a dinner table this “manner” gets put into play. Do you begin eating as soon as the plate is placed before you? Do you wait until the host sits down or until the entire table is served? As written in Emily Post’s Etiquette, The Definitive Guide to Manners, you are given permission to begin eating once three of you at the same table have been served your food. So, for instance, if you are at a table of 8 and 3 people have been served, the rule states it is proper to begin eating.
What do you think of this rule? Not to question Emily Post, but we tend to wait on everyone to be served unless the host specifically tells us to begin. It seems that many people feel this way judging from the events and gatherings we attend.

Do you follow Emily Post or do you tend to break the rule a bit? To leave your comments, please click on the title of this post and the comment form with expand at the end of the page.


Fun Stuff on Fridays

March 10, 2017, posted by Gina – We have many fun, creative and interesting things on our mind as we head into the weekend and Spring Break. Since it’s Fun Stuff Friday now is the time to share of few of them with you. We hope they put a smile on your face and provide a little inspiration for you as well!

First up, the Celfie vase. We will be ordering one (or a few) of these very soon. They are so precious and versatile. You can style the Celfie so many different ways that she’ll never be just another boring old vase.

Photo from Accent Decor at www.accentdecor.com

Second, we are BEYOND excited about the new HGTV show filmed in Mississippi called HOMETOWN. It premiers on Tuesday, March 21st. It’s hosted by Erin and Ben Napier, a young couple with a passion for renovating old, classic homes in Laurel. This show feels very similar to the hugely popular Fixer Upper out of Waco, Texas with Joanna and Chip Gaines. We are looking forward to seeing all their projects and great ideas.


Moving on to our third fun item that we can’t wait to start using this Spring. We are absolutely loving these Straw Bags with Pom Poms as they are showing up everywhere and seem to be the big trend for casual Spring and Summer outings. How could you not get one of these cuties? We spotted this one on Shopbop.

Our final fun item of the day is Jergens Natural Glow Instant Sun sunless tanning mousse. You know how it goes. All is right with the world and then you have a friend that comes back from the beach with a beautiful glow and you want that glow too. We have never found a sunless tanning product that did not look orangey or just plain bad. That is until now. This sunless tanning mousse goes on without being so dark that it is noticeable and it doesn’t leave streaks. It looks natural and gives a nice glow just like you spent a few days at the beach. If you think you might want to try this we have a few tips. Make sure to exfoliate. Make sure your skin is well hydrated by putting on a regular lotion first. Wear disposable gloves when smoothing it on being very careful around ankles and elbows. We found putting it on your face was too dark so just mix a little of it in with your regular lotion or moisturizer for just a slight bit of color. Once you have it everywhere but your hands, remove the gloves and very lightly cover the tops of your hands making sure to stay away from your knuckles and the sides of your hands. Choose the lightest color they offer, after all we are not trying to look as if we sunbathed for a week straight. We are just trying to get a bit of color.

Enjoy every minute of your weekend and check back with us on Monday for our first post on manners.


Easter Basket Centerpiece Tutorial 2 comments

March 2017

Easter will be here before you know it so we thought it would be fun to share a simple basket centerpiece tutorial. We chose whites and all shades of purple for this arrangement. It’s very easy to put together so let’s get started…

What you’ll need: A small wicker basket, plastic liner, wet floral foam, scissors, floral preservative, floral tape, hydrangea, purple stock, purple tulips, magenta carnations, waxflower and greenery.

1. We begin with a small wicker basket.
2. Make sure when using a basket to always place a plastic, waterproof liner in the bottom so that any moisture will not escape your arrangement.
3. Soak the WET foam. Remember when working with foam, there is no need to push the foam down or run water over it. Drop the foam in the water and let it absorb the water.
4. Prep your flowers by giving them a fresh cut and placing them in a working vessel of water with floral preservative. This works best if you let them sit overnight or for at least a few hours as it helps perk up the flowers and allows them to last longer.

5. Secure the foam in the basket. We used a bit of floral tape to allow for a more secure fit.
6. Begin with your largest blooms. In this case, we used some beautiful hydrangea blooms. Next, add some purple stock, making sure to work on all sides of the arrangement.
8. Add in a few light purple tulips, some magenta colored carnations and accent with waxflower.
9. To complete the arrangement, fill in and cover up your mechanics with greenery.

Go ahead and try this tutorial for yourself. You will be surprised at how much life and beauty it brings to your table even though it is simple and small. Happy Arranging!

SaveSave