Sunday, 31 March 2013

Wishing you a happy and blessed Easter!

Happy Easter!!   

We are back from a very busy week (but fun)....and I am looking forward to a day of rest today, and a chance to visit all my favorite blogs and who knows...maybe even staying in my pj's a good part of the day! A short and sweet post today. If you haven't entered the contest for the wonderful Madhouse paper goods for a service for 8, click here you must leave a comment on that post. Winner to be announced tomorrow.

And a few gorgeous blue and white Easter inspiration pictures courtesy of Martha Stewart. Enjoy your special day and be back tomorrow with a wonderful post that I know everyone is going to enjoy.

Wishing everyone a wonderful day and a very happy Easter!!

Thursday, 28 March 2013

Three cheers for Cherry blossoms and a giveaway!!

Hi there! I have sooooo missed being in blogland, making my rounds and really missed all my readers! My little getaway was wonderful and I came back to an overflowing mailbox, and lots of orders to get out. No rest for the weary...but I love every minute:) We are off again later today on a mini road trip for the next three days to do some college visits so I am thrilled to share with you a post I had put together a week or so ago, I will be back on Sunday and just in case I do not have the chance to post want to wish everyone a very happy Easter! Next week.....everything goes back to normal!

I looooove cherry blossoms. I can still remember the first time we attended a cherry blossom festival in Washington DC when I was a kid, I was totally transfixed in a way I cannot quite explain. As a young girl, we were also in Japan for the cherry blossom festival and have lots of pictures of my sister and I standing against natures most spectacular backdrop. Perhaps this was the very beginning of my love for flowers and nature in general, without my even knowing it. They are as beautiful and elegant as they are dramatic. Only downside is that they don't last as long as would be ideal (forever would be ideal).

I  have searched high and low for a very realistic looking cherry blossom and finally found them! I am soon going to be offering them  on  my online site,  under new arrivals. These blossoms are exceptional! Best part, they really do last forever!!

 I am also offering up a wonderful giveaway from Madhouse by Michael Aram, the maker of beautiful and sophisticated melamine and paper dinnerware.  Love the line....all details below.

 So first a look at all the beautiful ways cherry blossoms can be enjoyed both indoors and outdoors........

 Simply breathtaking! The public Asian

 Japan cherry blossom festival, Artsonearth

 DC in all its cherry blossom glory! Jennings and Gates

 Nothing quite like the wow factor that cherry blossoms always bring to a table! Theknot

 Walking underneath a huge canopy of cherry blossoms is like walking down heavens path.......

Florie Hupert
 Stunning cherry blossom inspired wallpaper in this gorgeous bathroom is so fresh, Houzz

 They certainly make a beautiful wedding cake! The cake girls

What room doesnt' look instantly spectacular with a huge spray of cherry blossoms?

Love them as inspiration for beautiful cookies,

Preston Bailey has proven over and over again he knows how to create total fairytales out of flowers!

 And can a party table look any prettier than one set with an explosion of cherry blossoms? Collection 26

 Love the idea of spring-y dinnerware with a cherry blossom theme, Macys

 Against the all white, the effect of the pale pink blossoms is simply breathtaking! Elizabeth

 Stunning cherry blossoms cake Let them eat cake

 Cherry blossom festival in Tokyo, Japan

They make a lovely card even lovelier....Mujka

Adore this bathroom! So elegant and refreshing with the pink cherry blossom paper!

How incredible are these etched glasses with cherry blossoms!! I love them! Branca

Wow.....this just takes my breath away! Calligraphy by Jennifer

Now to show I practice what I preach, here they are in my own home.............

Love them! They add such elegance and a bit of drama to any room they are used in. The height does magic.......I love real of course but a good faux is hard to beat as they last forever! How about you? Do you love them as much as I do?

Now onto this wonderful giveaway from The Madhouse Collection by Michael Aram . The giveaway is for a dinnerware setting for 8. They make beautiful papergoods and melamine dinnerware, looks really expensive but the prices are amazing! Their designs are simply gorgeous, so unique and really sophisticated. The lucky winner will get to choose their pattern. I will announce a winner on Monday. To enter simply visit Madhouse by clicking here, come back and tell me your favorite collection. Simple as that. So much to love!

Good luck and thanks as always for stopping in! Thanks Madhouse for your giveaway.  Hope alls well over in your corner of the world and once again wishing everyone a happy and healthy Easter!


Monday, 25 March 2013

Bloggers beautiful abodes...Mary Ann of Classic Casual Home

 Sure hope this posts on time as I scheduled this for Monday morning while I am away. I  am being featured over at Amy Vermillion's blog today for her "Whats on my nightstand" posts...such a fun idea! Hope you will come visit me there after reading this post. Click here to visit.

Good morning! Time for another  round of "Bloggers beautiful abodes" and have I got a treat for you! So sit back and savor that cup of coffee or tea and enjoy this post full of beauty and wisdom.  Say hello to super talented........

Mary Ann is an uber talented  Newport Beach, California based designer (if she wasn't so sweet it would be easy to hate her for being lucky enough to live that California dream). She is always doing something gorgeous whether in her own beautiful home or adding her touches to  her friends ......and trust me they ALL look right out of the pages of your favorite design magazine! 

She has totally nailed the elegant coastal vibe to perfection and I am a huge fan of her work and her blog. Whether she is redoing a guest room, prepping for the most beautiful taco night I have ever seen or planning a little fete in her assured its something you want to see and take notes on!  Her blog is one I simply do not miss. Period. I feel like we are friends and know we would be fast friends if we ever meet  If you don't know of her, be sure you head over to say hello and by all means sign up.....her blog is a total keeper. Enough of me, lets hear from wonderful Mary Ann.........


Thank you, Tina, for inviting me to tell 
you and your "enchanting readers" 
a bit about our home in 
Newport Beach, California. 
It's small, as many homes 
are on Lido Isle
(the island below on the right)
but we can walk or ride bikes 
to the beach.  

See the patch of grass on the sand?  
That is the playground for the grammar school where our son attended.
He always came home with sand in his shoes!

1. How long have you been in your present home?  Is this it for the long haul? Anything you would care to change if you could?

It's a 1950's cottage that we remodeled and moved into two and a half years ago.
I'm not sure we'll stay here forever. 
The people inside the home are what's important to me,
but this would be a comfortable place "for the long haul."  

If I could change anything, I wish we had more of a foyer...but there just isn't room.  
I do love our dutch door.

2. If you could only live in two rooms of your house, which two would be the ones?

My bedroom because I like to be lazy and
our patio has been nice to relax in lately.

3. How would you describe your decorating style?

Casual with a little French 
and classic elegance.

Both the child's corner chair and fireplace screen 
were bought at flea markets in France.

4. Do you have a favorite color scheme? What is it?

I don't really have a favorite color combination.  In my own home, I like a white backdrop so I can play with color.  I do enjoy doing all neutral interiors for others who prefer it though.
Same chairs two ways.

5. Favorite room of your house and why?

Right now, it's our guest room since I just finished it for the One Room Challenge. I stenciled the wall myself...a major feat for a non-do-it-yourselfer (but it only costed about $35).

6. Best two tips you can give to anyone looking to tackle the decorating of their own home?   
  • Hire a decorator (through referrals), even to use just as a sounding board.  He/she can help keep you on track with your goals and budget.  If that's not an option enlist a friend who's taste you admire.
  • Start files on Pinterest, Houzz and from magazines.  When you start to see common threads in your images, you will begin to understand your style preferences.
Best two things to NOT do?
  • Don't get in over your head doing work like electrical or plumbing that is better left for the professionals
  • Don't be afraid to try things...move your furniture around, mix it up (I might go a little overboard here :)
7. What do you think are the most important features for a kitchen?

My husband would say it's his stove since he loves to cook.
I like the storage in our pantry and that I can use the appliances in there and keep our counters clear.

 8.How do you like to dress up a cocktail table and console in a living room?

With books, trays, plants...
Or coral.

9.Any advice on the subject of lighting?

Dimmers, especially on overhead lighting.  
Layer with task lighting wherever you might want to read and also for ambiance.

10. Have a favorite paint color? Do tell!

I have this Benjamin Moore White Dove 
on walls throughout my house.  

11. What are a couple of really simple inexpensive things you can do in your home to make it feel "homey" and inviting?

Fruit (the lemons are from our tree), 
flowers and candles!

12. Fill in the blank- If money was no object, the very first thing I would buy for my home would be...

 beautiful, antique Persian rug in muted tones for the living room.  Ah...someday.

Thanks so much for having me over, Tina!!!
Best wishes,


Is she good or is she good? Mary Ann........I never tire of seeing your beautiful and welcoming  home. It is just so warm, elegant and beautifully put together and that guest room must have been done with me in mind so pencil me in for June :) By the way....that taco night I mentioned, well here it is........don't know about you but in my casa, taco night does not look like this:)

And check out the bridal  shower she threw.....are you available for my birthday in December?

Love these tomato caprese appetizers that she made......

 Thanks to everyone for stopping in and to Mary Ann for opening up her gorgeous abode for us all to marvel over! Be sure to stop over and say hello to the lovely Mary Ann, click here.

If you want to check out  my guest post over at Amy Vermillion's blog (and I do hope you will) click here.

Thanks for stopping in...have a wonderful Monday!