Friday, August 24, 2012

Sipping tea in the "Mama Cave"

Early in the summer I was able to pull together a wonderful little sitting area in our back yard. Off the back door and over from the pool, and shady in the afternoon.

 I just loved sitting & sipping in this area, and even enjoyed it while I plugged away on the laptop! Don't you just adore wireless?
Dare I say it again? I am so inspired by Courtney at French Country Cottage! She has this wonderful seating area in her backyard (scroll down to the middle of her post)that just gave me so many ideas! Then she went shopping again and much to my hubby's chagrin, so did I. Although, to appease him, I waited a few months for the clearance sale. (I'm happy to report that I bought my lovely gazebo at half price!)

Now, I can sip, type and enjoy without a little cardinal dropping a present on me!(Not so enjoyable) As much as I loved the sitting room look it feels more complete with the gazebo.

 And as my oldest son's friend declared-it's the perfect "Mama Cave" What do you think, do you like the sitting area before or after the addition of the Gazebo? Maybe it will be a spring and summer look next year to enjoy both!

You may also recognize the cute red bistro chairs from Courtney's blog. I headed right over to Kmart when I saw hers! And believe it or not, I found the wicker tables and chairs on Craiglist, also inspired by her set in her back yard.
 I just wish she lived closer so that I could invite her over for tea, and we could sip in my "Mama Cave" that she helped me put together! Thank you, Courtney! Cheers!
Wouldn’t you love to have a cozy retreat like this in your back yard?

Linking up to:
Feathered Nest Fridays at French Country Cottage with Courtney
Rustic Restorations Weekend at Homespun Happenings with Tammy
Show and Tell Friday at My Romantic Home with Cindy
Metamorphosis Monday at Between Naps on the Porch with Susan

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Sharing my Favorite Businesses over Tea! Week 5

This week, I have the pleasure of introducing you to my PA realtors. Since my husband is a professional Scouter we tend to go right to that circle to find great people for our service needs.
Gigi and Steve Miller are real estate professionals! They are part of a great brokerage here on the "Main Line" and know the area like the back of their hand. They also know the market. This is so important right now. Not only as a new home buyer, but as the seller you need to understand what this economy means to each step of the real estate game. And a game it is, so you need a great coach, someone who will cheer you on and teach you the trade so you don't get caught in a tackle at the finish line!
Another area that is so important when choosing your agent, is who do they know? When we found our house, we needed an honest evaluation of the bones of the house. Before we made an offer. Steve got on his cell and dialed up an architect who came over that afternoon, and gave us a thumbs up. Your agent's circle of influence will be a great resource for you and it's also a good gauge on their standing in the community too!

As a business owner, I look to other business professionals to refer. I am happy to send Gigi and Steve Miller your way via my Business Directory link to the right!

*If you need help in the Northern New Jersey area, Maria Rini is the agent I'll refer you to. She and her husband Rich, are the Welcome Home Team. More about them, next month.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Sharing life over a can of Spray Paint

I've had a small project in mind for a month, ever since I packed up these urns and moved them to the new house in PA. These were a great deal from Micheal's 4 years ago, and as they weathered and got chippy they were a nice accent to the front steps of the NJ house. The NJ house, it's for sale by the way and can been checked out here, has a European flair to it and the chippy look added to the charm. The new house in PA has a more classic almost farmhouse feel to it and I wasn't loving the weathered look to the urns.
So, as my new DIY Mentor Courtney from French Country Cottage so often does, I headed to Lowes!
I knew what had to be accomplished and it should be a cinch! Just one can of spray paint and two plants!
Here it is after one coat of black satin. Looking good!

Here it is next to the twin. Nice transformation, and for just $4. Love it!
Voila, great looking black urn with Boston fern for the front porch area. Don't you just love the classic feel of an urn? And the black just dresses up my front entry. So, do tell. Which is your favorite? Chippy Chic or Classic Black?
Next week, the front door transformation and a view with both urns.
Can't wait to enjoy a glass of iced tea and sit and admire my work!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Playing with Dishes and Tablescape Thursday

Nothing speaks to the end of summer quite like sunflowers. And sunflowers with their golden hues make me dream of Provence. This is the inspiration for my breakfast tablescape this morning. I did some shopping in my dish closet, my "Prepared Hostess" cubbies and my favorite dish store, Pier 1 :)
I just love the rich accents of reds and blues to the golds of the tablecloth, sunflowers and plates. I've discovered a new detail in tablescaping, layering! I've picked up some wonderful tips from Susan at Between  Naps on the Porch over the past year. She is so talented, and handy :) And her followers are too!

This unexpected pop of blue really brought out the best in the tea cosie, wouldn't you agree? And then it just added depth to the plate for scones layered on top of the tea napkin.
 I'm drinking French Breakfast tea this morning as I dream of sunflowers in Provence and head off to work on our new catalog. 
While I do that, hop on over to Between Naps on the Porch for Tablescape Thursday and fabulous inspiration!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Sharing my Favorite businesses! Week 4

The East Goshen Farmers Market has really captured my imagination!  I just love going and seeing all the customers show their appreciation for locally grown food and homemade goods! There is such an amazing variety that you'll just have to hop over to their website and take a look at the updated list of vendors. I've enjoyed fabulous baked goods, the best chicken salad EVVA and yummy garden fresh veggies! Since it's located at the town park I can get in a good walk as well, that makes me feel less guilty about the cookie purchase! Let me know what your fav find is, and I hope to bump into you there!
Don't forget, you can click on my "Business Directory" link at the right for more info!

Playing with Dishes!

One of the things our customers love most about us is our help with setting a beautiful table! I love helping them coordinate colors, textures, and themes. This month we are featuring our wonderful Soiree Cosie Collection in our Success Starter Kit and I wanted to show our Hosts as well as our Customers how versatile it is.
Here's the collection last year, when it was first launched. Since then the manufacturer of the Tea Set has gone out of business. This made our TEAm sad but with some other color choices and fun ideas we are happy to say that it has continued to be a great seller!
There's nothing like sunflowers to make a summer table setting shine! We are loving the bold colors to add richness to this collection. Playing with the size, shape and texture of the dishware really says "come and sit and chat" to your guests. So please do pop by again at the end of the week for the reveal of the photo shoot.

And Yes, you most certainly can skip over to our website to purchase your own Soiree Collection, it includes a free set of tea napkins. (They're not in this photo)