Monday, March 30, 2009

~ Blue Monday ~

Welcome to my first Blue Monday post. Thanks Sally for the invitation to participate. You can see other Blue Monday posts by visiting Sally's site at Smilingsally. She invites everyone to join in or visit her Blue Monday participants.
I love to decorate with plates. So many of them are little pieces of art on their own.

This Asiatic Pheasant platter anchors an arrangement of other similar plates that are over the mirror in our powder room. This is one of my favorite patterns in the blue and white transfer ware catagory.

These are three English plates have Grecian stamped on the back.
Thanks for coming by and letting me join all you Blue Monday blogger's.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Tablescape Thursday

Welcome to another Tablescape Thursday hosted by Susan at Between Naps On The Porch.
Finally, thanks to Pat at Back Porch Musings, the Royal Crownford Country Chintz dishes from Staffordshire, England that I got as a show gift in Chicago in the late '70's have some place mats to rest on and soft cotton napkins to match.

Pat tipped me off about the treasures to be found at Tuesday Morning's so on her recommendation I went to the one near us for the first time hoping to find some Blue Italian serving pieces. Well, they didn't have any but I did find enough other goodies to fill a cart. These mats and napkins were tucked in among the Easter items. I pulled out my color chips that I carry with me, and after some deliberation decided that they would work with the color of the dining room, and just might also be the perfect thing to use with my pitifull pink dishes that rarely see the light of day for lack of linen's to use with them.

So, what do you think? I think I just might like them.

See the pretty boxes in the corner on the chest in the background. Those were another find at Tuesday Morning's that I picked up for one of you! I can't wait to share all about them in an up coming post.
Thanks for coming by for Susan's Tablescape Thursday party. Join in or hop around visiting other Tablescaper's if you want to get creative with some of those beautiful dishes you have stashed in your cupboards or just want some pretty inspiration to get you going this morning.
Enjoy today and let me know what you think about the new linen if you feel like it. Talk to you soon my friends.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Met Monday ~ The Guest House Revisited ~

Welcome again to Metamorphosis Monday hosted by Susan at Between Naps On The Porch. Most of the regular visitors of Life At Home are familiar with the Guest House, but since many of you are new here I thought I would share again the project metamorphosis that Dana and I did on my parents Guest House.
This is the finished product of a year long project that started when my Father purchased a run down cottage that was located behind their house. At the time he really didn't know what he was going to do with the house, only that he thought it would be a good investment to acquire the land adjacent to their property. Then he decided that he would like to turn it into a little guest house. This picture shows how it looked just before we got started renovating it.

My daughter Dana did the design and acted as the general contractor for the project with me consulting with her over the phone. Bless her heart, she was the one that dealt with the day to day issues and had to listen to me freak out from a distance, and to Dad who was right next door, with every wall that was removed or cabinet that was built.

Finally, when all the construction was finished and Mom and Dad were out of town we set about the interior decoration. In three day with a one month old baby and three year old in tow we cleaned, shopped and stocked the little Guest House full to the brim with everything that you see in the following pictures.

To see the completed details you can click on the link below.

Hope you all had a good weekend. Mine was bitter sweet. I spent the weekend up north with my grandchildren while their parents got away for a much needed rest and had a wonderful, exhausting time with them. Aaron & Angie came by with rest of my grands and where a huge help with the little ones. The sad note to the weekend was that when Dana and Doug got home on Sunday afternoon they found their beloved eleven year old Labrador, Spayd's dead on the garage floor. We have no idea what happened but you can imagine how horrific it was for them to come home and find her like that. She had been fine all weekend, playful and happy. We are all just sick about the loss.
Sorry, I didn't mean to go into this here but it is just so on my heart I couldn't help it. Spayd's has been with Dana and Doug for a third of their lives, I am heart broken for them and to have this happen on my watch.......well you can imagine how I feel too......

Thanks for coming by for Metamorphosis Monday and for listening to my sad story about our beloved Spayd's.

Susan has her link up on Between Naps On The Porch so if you want to join in on the fun stop by there and sign up. It really is fairly easy to do. Even if you don't want to join in the posting you might want to click on the links and see what other projects her participants are sharing. Susan's post on the transformation of her foyer has me totally inspired.

Friday, March 20, 2009

~ Foodie Friday Trainwrecks ~

Well, my first Foodie Friday post ever fell right into the theme of this weeks Foodie Friday Trainwrecks quite nicely. I had another funny story about food that I told our lovely host at Designs By Gollum that I was going to post, but this one worked out to be a trainwreck that fit the theme too and it was at hand, as they say. So, welcome to my first Foodie Friday entry.
From a distance it does not look too bad. A nice classic chicken piccata with steamed fresh asparagus as the main course. A light green salad and a side of lasagna left over from last nights dinner with John's sisters, accompanied by a mellow glass of Chianti Rufina.

On closer examination you can see that the steamed asparagus is a limp pale green version of its former self. John does not like his vegetables al dente but cooked a bit further. However, when he asked me if the asparagus were from a can I knew I had crossed the line from al dente to border line mush.

Trainwreck # 2 was the chicken piccata. Usually when I make this I use olive oil to saute the meat in. Well, I saw on a cooking show that regular vegetable oil is preferable because there is less chance of scorching the delicate olive oil. Big mistake. Instead of using my regular process of heating the EVOO over medium heat and slowly cooking the chicken I cranked up this new oil and burnt the heck out of the whole batch of chicken.

Here you get a close up of the limp asparagus and the over cooked chicken, like you really wanted to see it close up......

Well, here it is even closer. You can see how greasy it is, as well as burned.....

It is so disheartening to go to the trouble of making something and having it turn out badly.

Poor asparagus in all their fresh glory before I cremated them.

John's favorite salad that we have with most meals turned out just fine.
Well, there you have it my first Foodie Friday. Thanks for letting me play along.
I'm off to see what other Foodie's have posted at Designs By Gollum and to see if I did this any where near how you are supposed to do it.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Tablescape Thursday

Welcome to my third Tablescape Thursday hosted by Susan at Between Naps On The Porch.
Today I thought I would share our everyday table setting.

Our everyday dishes are Spode's Blue Italian.

The square blue and white trivets come in handy for setting hot dishes on.

About an hour before dinner I will decant the wine so that it has time to breath and become nice and smooth.

Thanks for coming by. You can see other Tablescapes by visiting Between Naps On The Porch and clicking on the other participants names in the Mr. Linky section of Susan's beautiful blog.
This has been fun, I encourage others to join in too.
I look forward to hearing from you and visiting other Tablescapers, these gals do some pretty amazing things.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Spring Fluffing

The delightful Rhoda at Southern Hospitality is having a Spring Fluffing party. I do not have much decorated yet for spring but because she is such a sweetie I did not want to miss her party so I thought I would share my fairly new mantel decoration with you all.
When my daughter Dana from Dana Moore Designs was here the weekend we were putting together the entertainment center she ran down to the basement and pulled up some spring things to fluff up the mantel.

The first things she brought up were my huge French rabbits that I like to use at Easter time. They fill in the space nicely. With these 18' ceilings you really need big items to make any kind of a statement. These big rabbits caught my eye at The Great Indoors several years ago and I look forward to using them each season. I purchased the blue and green Mama rabbit with her babies sitting on her and the green watering can at the same time. Dana used the books to set the watering can on to give it some height. Then she used an antique candle box that we had downstairs to carry the dark wood from the entertainment center over to this end of the room. The terra-cotta pot with moss in it adds a little softness to the arrangement.

This picture from upstairs shows the full fireplace with the crooked floating rug in front of it ;)

Thanks Rhoda for the party. I hope you enjoyed your visit here. These parties have been a fun way to meet other bloggers. I so enjoy hearing from all of you and so appreciate your comments and all of the new followers of Life At Home. Stop by Southern Hospitality , join in the fun and grab a cup of coffee and spend some time visiting the other participants. I hope to get around to visiting all of you soon.

Happy Spring Fluffing.


Monday, March 16, 2009

Metamorphosis Monday

Welcome to the first Metamorphosis Monday at Life At Home. Susan at Between Naps on the Porch is our host for this fun event. Her Metamorphosis of her bedroom is divine, be sure to stop by and check it out and while you are there you can visit other participants in Metamorphosis Monday too.
~ Before ~ Today I thought I would share our entertainment center metamorphosis. Here is the cabinet that housed our old TV. This is a picture from last fall with some of our harvest decorations showing up. I really like this cabinet but it was too small. The TV in it was so small that our old eyes could barely see the picture from across the room when we sat on the sofa to watch it.

So, on a trip to Costco shortly before Christmas John decided we needed a bigger TV. I reluctantly agreed knowing that the big black box would be a huge eye sore in our open floor plan home. But, being the good wife that I try to be I gave in............remember I said reluctantly ;) We didn't have any thing to put the beast on so we quickly rearranged a few things. My pretty cabinet went upstairs in our bedroom and we moved a table from behind the sofa across the room and plopped the beast on it. Here you can see a glimpse of it behind the chandelier. I tried to hide it in the pictures taken at Christmas time but you get the idea.

~ After ~
Finally after a few months of shopping we decided to order this cabinet from Direct Buy. The cost was so much less than any we had looked at so we ordered this one site unseen. We were pleasantly surprised at the quality of it for the price we had to pay. It took John and Matt a whole day to put it together but we are happy with the way it looks. What do you think? Better than the old beast plopped up on the table? It really is so much easier to see. I can even see it from the kitchen now.

It has plenty of storage for all the things that go with modern entertainment systems plus a little room to add some decoration. In this tower I put a few old books, boxes and bunnies.

A little more of the same in this side. I can't part with the old World Books that our children used when they were little for research before computers became so available. I thought they worked in here. The warm color and the memories they evoke seem to make them still relevant today.
Thanks for stopping by Life at Home and thanks again to Susan for hosting Metamorphasis Monday.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Tablescape Thursday

Welcome once again to Tablescape Thursday presented by Susan at Between Naps On The Porch. One of these weeks I will get this right. Last week I could not get my link backs to work. This week the pictures loaded backwards, my fault but the window washers are coming in a bit and I don't have time to reload them right now. Any way, happy Tablescape Thursday.Hopsy at Monograms And Manicures and Miss Janice at Etiquette With Miss Janice are celebrating Lilly this week so I thought I would join in with this little lunch tablescape.

This little corner of the island in our kitchen is where I sit in the afternoon to have lunch. Today's lunch will be on this Lilly inspired table setting while I look through my Lilly book.

I have no idea what will be on the menu but at least the table is set and ready to go.

Again, I can't get my linky thing to work...........You can find Between Naps On The Porch, Monograms And Manicures, and Etiquette With Miss Janice in my side bar.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Tablescape Thursday

Between Naps On The Porch has a Tablescape Thursday feature on her gorgeous blog that I thought I would join in. If you have not been to her blog you are missing out. Stop by and check her out and then visit the other participants in Tablescape Thursday.
Today I did a colorful table setting in the dining room. The dishes are MacKenzie-Childs Honeymoon in Blue and Green used alternately on each setting.

The stem ware is also various patterns of Mac-Kenzie-Childs for the small glasses and the tall cobalt blue wine glasses were a gift from my friend Sarah. I like the way they add height to the tablescape.

Here you can see some of the detail of the bases of the glasses.

The little white butter plates and salt cellars are old pieces from my white wedding ring china that another friend, Maurine got for me many years ago. The center arrangement placed on a gold frame mirror ties in the gold rims of the dishes and the gold silverware that John's Mom got us for a wedding preasant. The Tracey Porter candle sticks are from my old shop as is the whimsical puppy vase at one end of the center piece.

This ruffled bowl ties in with the ruffled edges of the dishes. I tipped it on it's side so you could see the pattern. The placemats and napkins, that I forgot to put on the table until after I had taken the photos, are green silk with pink, green and blue dragonflies

Thanks for hosting Tablescape Thursday. I hope you enjoy this crazy colorful tablescape. My text is not working right so please excuse the spelling and gramatical errors. Blogger won't let me go back in and fix them but I wanted to join in the party anyway ;)
I look forward to hearing from you and visiting other tablescapers.