I’ve been rather MIA lately I know! The little girl and I fought quite a nasty cold for THREE WEEKS in June that really knocked us both out for a while. I haven’t had a cold like that in ages. No fun. Then as soon as I got better we went out of town for a little whitewater river rafting and RV’ing with some dear friends and old neighbors of ours. The last two weeks the almost 3 year old and I have been staying quite busy doing….

Mother’s Beach-Belmont Shore

and this.
Disneyland with one of Ellie’s bestest friends Sierra!

lots of this…
Ice Cream…cause mommy likes it a lot too.

this for a while…
Baby Ballet


and I did this.
Dinner at Taco Surf Sunset Beach with some old friends!

Summer has started off pretty darn good! My ultimate favorite holiday is this weekend…4th of July…and the week before and after are always jammed pack full of fun events and outings. It’s also my birthday (the 6th) as well as my little ones’. Yes, we have the same birthday! We’re having a big bash to celebrate America’s birthday and here is a sneak of what it will look and taste like!
clockwise from top right corner: 1)candles in mason jars  2)sparklers for the kiddos 3)bbq chicken 4)watermelon feta arugala salad-Ina Garten  5)white hydrangeas 6)plaid pendleton blankets to watch fireworks on  7)flag cake-more Ina!  8)nautical napkins, cups and plates from Ikea  9)lemonade in drink dispensers from Pottery Barn  10)Red White and Blue Potato salad-Cooking Light  11)lots of flag swags around the house

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I get so excited when I go to grab the incoming mail and see the newest edition of House Beautiful laying in there! Immediately, I scan through my daily schedule in my head to think of when I will have a half hour or so to read it cover to cover that day. Yesterday I did so quite easily, as I spent two hours of my day waiting in the walk in clinic to be seen for my horrific head cold that has turned into a nice little sinus infection.
Well in this months’ issue they featured the work of a few leading interior designers and then asked the some easy small changes you can do in a day to make a big impact in your home.
1. Organize with Trays

“Corral items like TV remotes on a tray on the coffee table. Put liquor bottles, glasses, and bar accoutrements on a tray in the living or dining room, like in this Georgia beach house.” —Jim Howard

2. Display Children’s Art
“Display drawings in a colorful frame, or in a white frame with a colored mat. Hang them in an otherwise unimaginative space. They’re full of spirit — and meaningful.” —Eric Cohler
3. Remove Upper Cabinet Doors
“Remove upper doors. Arrange your dishes and glasses in an interesting way. Put miscellaneous items in low wicker baskets that are all uniform.” —Jim Howard.

4. Paint the Lampshades
“Buy an inexpensive paper shade and paint it red —Farrow and Ball’s Blazer is a gorgeous scarlet. A red shade makes the light incredibly romantic and flattering.” —Joe Nye
5. Bring on the Branches
“Put branches in a container. You could even then go to Home Depot and get a small spotlight to light them from below. It casts fantastic shadows into empty corners.” —Jean Larette

6.Rehang Your Artworks
“Put pieces in unusual places, like above a door. Lean some against a mirror. Hang several in an asymmetrical collage, at least three inches apart, like how these antique mirrors are in a Georgia beach house.” —Jim Howard
7. Refresh the Bath
“Change your shower curtain, or just the liner. Add fragrant candles and a small bouquet. Clear the counters of everything except your prettiest essentials.” —Jean Larette
8. Refresh with New Sheets
“Refresh your bedroom with new sheets. My favorites are white hotel-style sheets with a colored border. They have such a classic look; you can buy them anywhere.” —Eric Cohler
9.Wallpaper the Back of Shelves
“Paper the back of a cabinet or bookshelf in faux-snakeskin, crocodile, or ostrich. Paint can’t come close to the impact. It will inspire you to rearrange your shelves.” —Jean Larette
10.Remove Rugs
“Get a carpet remnant and put it down in an unusual place, like a patio or balcony. Or take up some of your rugs. Bare wood and stone floors can be just as beautiful.” —Eric Cohler
11. Accessorize with Books
“Stack art, design, gardening, travel books — whatever you collect — on a table. Books are my favorite accessory because they’re so personal — they reflect your interests.” —Joe Nye
12. Paint Curtain Rods
“Paint rods and rings with a color that complements the curtains. Rub the paint on with a rag — it creates a softer effect. “—Jim Howard
Some of these suggestions I totally agree with, while some of them I think are so-so ideas. My suggestions? They may sound similar to what the “experts” said, but read on….

1. Rehang Your Artwork: No, not like Jim Howard suggested. I walk into peoples’ homes all the time and immediately think, “That picture is FAR too high on the wall!”. Bring your artwork down to your EYE level. If you have to look up to see it, it’s too high! And if you are putting art behind a sofa, you probably need to lower it even a bit more. You want it to float just above the top of the sofa, not way up above the wall behind it.
Hillary Thomas
Phoebe Howard

2. Declutter Your Kitchen!!!! : Get rid of the mess people! Buy yourself plenty of plastic storage container for your pantry to house all those chips, cereals, etc.  Still not enough room? Pick up some pretty seagrass or woven baskets with lids to set on the floor or countertop. Grab old fashioned glass jars for flour, sugar, and grains. It can be done! I promise you it will make you actually want to cook in your kitchen and going into that room won’t seem like such a chore.
Anne Turner Carrol’s Kitchen via Decor Pad

via Country Living

3. Add Fresh Flowers and Plants: Just by adding a pretty vase with flowers, a potted plant or an indoor tree can really breath life into a room and make your home seem more welcoming.  BUT… I said “fresh” flowers and plants! Please, please, please do not put a silk ficus tree in your home….EVER! Seriously. It looks fake, it will collect dust and look even more fake and no you are not fooling anyone. I promise you. Ok, with that being said there are SOME nice looking silk flowers and plants that have come on the market. They are not cheap. If you see them at Michael’s or any other craft store for that matter, the swap meet, you get the picture…then they’re probably the icky ones I’m talking about. I’ve seen nicer silks at some home boutiques stores and Pottery Barn.  The best ones I’ve ever seen are by Distinctive Designs. A few samples...

Check out their site! If you see something you like I just happen to have an account with them.  I can get you a quote, as well as offer you an additional 10% off!
Barclay  Butera

via Velvet and Linen

4. PAINT: Do your walls look dingy, or do you have dust marks on your walls from your pictures being hung in the same place for so long? Did you paint your house more than say six years ago, right when you moved into your home? OR did you move right into your place and just leave the paint on the walls from the previous owners? If you have little ones, furry ones or a clumsy husband then you need to PAINT! This one thing will make the room seem cleaner, brighter, and more put together (partly because you’ll want to organize a bit after you are done) than anything else you can do to a room. I’ll show you a shot of our home and what a little paint (and umm…undecorating!) can do.
Summer is right around the corner! Are you going to do anything to spruce up your home and give it a quick fix?


I’ve had a bad case of forgetfulness lately. Here I have a perfectly good blog and I continually forget to bring my camera with me to take photos for it! My iPhone only does a so-so job…but that’s what I use most of the time.

In any case, I wanted to recap the event I went to last Friday night, Blog*Sugar! Here are some photos from other girls that went to the shindig. Thanks girls for taking photos just so I could use them myself! hee hee!

Vintage Hawaiian Theme
The Flowers…. that I contributed to the event!
Yummy Food and Drinks

Some of the lovely ladies of the night…
(from left to right) ME!, Heather Myers, the hostess of the night Rachel, co-hostess Andrea, Live Fancy’s Kimmie, and Valerie.
I’m still suffering through this stupid cold my cutie pie Ellie gave me. So bear with me on the lack of meaty dialogue going on right now.  Cold medicine= no brain. I’m praying I get well by this weekend…temps in the 80′s are expected AND we finally got our outdoor cushions for our patio furniture. I’ve got some MAJOR patio area decorating that needs to be done in time for our big 4th of July party we are throwing. Sneak peek below….
***Thank you to Miranda, Brenda, and Rachel for letting me (unknowingly) ummm..borrow your pics!

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June 1, 2010

Cheap chic at Target!

by Shelly

After my most recent jaunt to our local Target I came home hiding my purchases a bit more than usual. Come on ladies..you know what I’m talking about. You spent just a tad too much while at Tarjay and so it becomes a bit of a game to not only get your one too many bags in the house without the other half seeing it, but then casually pulling it off when he asks, “Honey is that new?”. NOOOOOO!  Of course it isn’t! Yeah right. :)

Well, I’m guilty. It was just too good! Not only did I pick up this cute summer hat for days by the pool and hanging on the beach…..

I also snagged this cute little sundress for my Ellie. Perfect for hot summer barbeques and soirees. Yes, my kid goes to soirees. hahaha!!
 But then I stopped in my tracks at some of their newest home decor. Come to Mama!!! Too cute! If you are looking for some cheap things to spruce up your home Target has got it. I picked up these awesome glass lamps…still not sure where I’m putting them..but that’s not the point. :)

These were another cute find…love love love those shades!
Striped Lamp Shade 
Glass Lamp Base

Adorable for a dash of Americana just in time for the 4th of July! Throw a few on a neutral sofa or an all white bed.

I so wish they had these frames in multiple sizes! The pattern is just too cute and of course the white looks fresh and summery.

Their decorative half hour glass comes in three fun colors: bright blue, green and yellow. This would look be perfect atop a stack of books on a coffee table or added into a bookshelf vignette. And check out who’s jumped on the “Keep Calm and Carry On” bandwagon!
That pillow…the blue lamp…LOVE!
If you’re trying to save money…DO NOT..I repeat..DO NOT go into Target! But if you’re looking for those little somethings for yourself and your home to bring in the warm weather, well you can’t beat it. 
Now back to nursing my sniffling, sneezing self. Colds..ugh.