Sunday, December 31, 2017

A Stroll through Christmas Villages, Part 2

Thank you for joining me for the second part of a stroll through our Christmas villages!  If you haven't been to Mistletoe Park, visitors are welcome to Part 1.

In contrast to our other village, this one has a small town/Americana feel. Each house and building has a distinct style and color palette.

Saturday, December 30, 2017

A Stroll through Christmas Villages, Part 1

There's something calm and peaceful, and a bit romantic, about the villages that many of us build at Christmastime. I thought perhaps you would enjoy a stroll through ours.

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

A Merry Plaid Christmas

Christmas is only days away! I wanted to design the table we will use for dinner on Christmas Eve today. Ideally I do so several days in advance, but there have been years when I finished as guests began to arrive (!!!).

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

On the Fifth Day of Christmas



For my first Christmas tablescape, I imagined a quiet celebration taking place in a small village.  In the center is the village green surrounded by shops and houses.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Autumn on Display

This isn't quite the post I had in mind. I began taking photos in late September to showcase the changing colors of autumn. Mostly what I had were shots of everything in green. Fall came late here in North Georgia and almost every tree and shrub carried their green shades much later than usual.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Thanksgiving in Blue and Gold


I love all the shades of blue and you'll find them throughout our home in painted walls, furniture, and decor. So of course Thanksgiving this year will be celebrated with blue and gold.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Understated Pumpkins

I had every intention of going all out for pumpkins for this table, but life intervened. It has a way of doing that.

So instead of a bountiful pumpkin tablescape, I went in the direction of an understated table that includes pumpkins, but could work with any of the things that signify autumn, such as leaves or acorns.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

The Table's Ready for Potions and Spells

I've flown about, readying the table for my guests. We're eating early because the witching hour comes at twilight!

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Autumn Colors on the Table

Autumn may have officially arrived over a week ago, but only today has it begun to feel like fall. Temps are finally out of summer's range and humidity levels are once again comfortable. If only it will stay this way!

Even though the yard is still a lovely green, I know that other hues are on their way. Anticipating them, I've set the table with the colors of autumn.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Falling for Apples

To me, fall begins with apples and plums arriving in the stores. I brought an armload home the other day and set some in a bowl on the table. Their deep colors set off by the silver bowl became the centerpiece for a table celebrating the autumn equinox.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Tablesetting with Poppy and Cobalt

Last week I had fun while waiting for an HVAC contractor at daughter J's place. Miss J and her roommate both had full class schedules that day, so I went to Dahlonega on a gorgeous early September day. She graciously said I could play with a table setting while I waited.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

September Transitions, Italian Style

Early September in North Georgia marks the end of summer, but not really the beginning of fall. I think of it as a transitional month, sharing the characteristics of both seasons.

Friday, September 1, 2017

Falls Park on the Reedy

Public gardens come in a variety of sizes and types, from a pocket garden at a busy intersection to grand ones such as New York's Central Park. Greenville, South Carolina, has the lovely Falls Park on the Reedy in the heart of the city.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Summer Bounty

Inspiration comes in many forms. Sometimes it's the time of the season, sometimes it's the tableware. Today it's tea towels, with an exuberant print that's perfect for them to be used on the table as runners/placemats.


Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Under the Sea

The rains have ceased, replaced by heat and humidity. Summer is in full swing and I'm looking for relief! And what better place than the sea?

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Vintage Glassware

I recently attended the 41st Annual Collectible Glass Show presented by the Peach State Depression Glass Club in Marietta, GA. There were 28 national dealers who brought vintage glass from the 1880s through the 1970s.

This was the second year I have gone and I thought you might enjoy the sight of so much pretty glassware in one place!

Monday, July 24, 2017

South of the Border

Sometimes you just have to do it!

Without planning, without time to give it much thought, you just have to do it!

Thursday, July 13, 2017

A table for la Fête nationale

I've been fascinated with French history and culture since I was a teenager. Six years of French language and literature classes turned me into a bit of a Francophile. I horribly mangle French when I speak it, but I used to be able to understand half of what I heard. I was better at reading French, and loved Molière and Rimbaud.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

The Changing Garden

June brought new colors and shapes to the front garden.

Japanese iris (Iris ensata) are the last to bloom of the three types of irises I have. You'll notice that both sets of petals are flatter, forming a simpler, broader flower. 

Saturday, July 1, 2017

A Casual Fourth of July

Are you having a big celebration for the Fourth of July? We've been invited this weekend to a friend's cabin in the mountains to celebrate – there's sure to be several types of barbecue, side dishes and tasty desserts.

But on the Fourth itself, we'll be happily relaxing at home.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Blues with a Dash of Turquoise

Welcome to the first tablescape of summer! Pastel shades still dominate in early summer gardens, and that's where I found my inspiration.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

The April Garden

The garden has gone through a rough period the past few years.  We suffered through the hottest summer ever in North Georgia. We saw the return of the drought, and with it strict water use guidelines. Since I wasn't keen on trying to water after midnight with a flashlight, the garden pretty much depended on rainfall.

Perhaps I should describe our garden. Our yard is blessed with a large number of hardwood trees towering 60 feet or more. We were able to keep them when we built the house 20 years ago, but have seen about a dozen succumb to construction trauma and drought. Perennials and flowering shrubs are interspersed among the trees and in front of the house, which is the only planted location with half-to-full-day sun.

These intrepid flowers made their appearance in April.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

A Run for the Triple Crown

I love going to horse races. I loved spending Saturdays at River Downs, where my favorite place to be was always at the finish line. To hear and see and feel magnificent thoroughbreds thunder past me is unforgettable. I never cared who won, it was the races themselves that were exciting!

Friday, May 26, 2017

Late Spring with Toulouse

Spring has returned, with clear blue skies and wonderful breezes. It chased summer away with thunderstorms and rains for days. But I don't mind – I much prefer spring! (This northern transplant has yet to get used to southern summers...even after all these years!)

And so I bring you another spring-themed table.

Friday, May 5, 2017

A Celebration Delayed

Essays and lab reports due. Study group dates intricately planned and coordinated. Finals looming!

They all conspired to delay daughter J's birthday celebration. An auspicious evening for it finally arrived this week.

We kept it low-key at her request, but still included all the trappings of our family traditions, which my parents had begun. The person of honor gets to choose the menu, and we always use fine tableware.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Lunch with Violets and Irises

Lavender and lilac, violet and amethyst. Spring comes with so many lovely shades of purple

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Thursday, April 6, 2017

The Garden in Spring

Spring has arrived! Weeks earlier than usual, and with a sudden freeze catching the early bloomers, but here nonetheless!


Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Dinner for Two

Dinner for two - what was once an indulgence is now the norm for us since our daughter headed off to college. Most dinners are pretty casual, in the breakfast room with our everyday table settings.

But I think there's every reason to take dinner out of the ordinary sometimes. And what better time than a birthday!

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

A Table for St. Patrick's Day

Do you celebrate St. Patrick's Day? We did every year when daughter J was small. She loved leprechauns and the mischief they would cause around the house. Teenage J -- not so much!

So it has been several years since I decorated for St. Patrick's Day. This weekend J will be home from college, providing the perfect excuse to celebrate!

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

A Winter's Song

At the tail end of February, winter is making a slow retreat. The first perennials have begun to flower, but the trees remain gray or brown, leaves still carefully tucked away.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

The Garden Awakens

The unusually warm winter has awakened the garden.

But the nandina are holding onto their fall/winter colors.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Charnwood Hearts

I have to confess that I have a laissez-faire approach to Valentine's Day. Most of my adult life, February 14 came and went like every other day.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Tea and Cinnamon Toast

Well, I've decided to take a break this afternoon. The perfect choice for a lovely winter's day is a pot of tea and my favorite type of toast - cinnamon. I've set up everything here by the window.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Lunar New Year

I love the variety of holidays and special occasions there are during the winter months. Each comes with its own symbols and traditions celebrated around the table. For the Lunar New Year I've gathered some things for an Americanized version of a Chinese dinner. So come with me to dinner at eight.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Snowman Dreams

I moved to North Georgia from Ohio many years ago and I miss watching snow fall. I miss the sensation of snowflakes on your face, making the first tracks across the field, the feel of a well-packed snowball in your hand. I even miss the first shovelful thrown off the sidewalk. (Though not all the ones that followed it!)

So snowfall forecasts here are greeted with great anticipation. Two to four inches were promised! Instead we got a 1-inch coating of ice. We were not amused.

To counter my disappointment, I decided to design a table covered with snow. If I design it, it will come.....

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Garden Lights, Holiday Nights

Growing up, one of our annual holiday traditions was nightly drives throughout the neighborhoods to view their holiday lights. Ever since, imaginative displays of lights draw me irresistibly, and we've continued the tradition with our daughter. With an extended break before heading back to college, J suggested we see the light display at the Atlanta Botanical Garden. So on the last night before the rains arrived -- and with shirt-sleeve weather -- we headed to Midtown Atlanta.

I'll let the photos mostly speak for themselves...

Daughter J