Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Big Photo Challenge: Special

This week's photo challenge is Special

I have a special box where I keep cards and letter that were sent to me for birthdays, Mother's Day, Valentine's Day, anniversaries, thank-you's and "just because".  When I look at all the wonderful sentiments and notes, I feel very special and loved.

Click on the icon below to see the other entries for the photo challenge.

The Big Photo Challenge

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Wouldn't repairs be more fun if you were using tools like these?

 and if you had a toolbox to put them in like this?
I wouldn't even mind cleanup with this fun dustpan and brush.
You can find all these fun things and more at alice supply co.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Picnic Poster Art

Great Summer Images
The Herman Miller company of Michigan is know for its innovative design.  Since 1970, a poster is designed to commemorate the annual employee picnic.  These posters feature great summer images.  

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1 Herman Miller Summer Picnic, Sunglasses 2005  2 Herman Miller Summer Picnic Flip Flops, 2001   3 Herman Miller Summer Picnic Croquet, 1999  4  Herman Miller Summer Picnic Caramel Apples, 2003 

Several Summer Picnic posters are housed in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art and the Smithsonian. We offer a variety of original Summer Picnic prints from past to present. 

Herman Miller Summer Picnic Fruit Cart, 1995  
This is the poster that I own.  You can view and/or purchase posters by clicking here to visit the website.

Friday, June 25, 2010

La Plates & All Things Monogrammed

I came across this website and thought I'd share...

...La Plates lets you design personalized plates...

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...and these are just a few of the other great ideas 
1 Puppy or Kitty mat $18  2 Purse $100  3 Make-up bag $25   4 Cutting board $50

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Big Photo Challenge: Small

Photo challenge this week is SMALL

I had fun playing with this challenge.  I tried various scenarios for the miniature chair and cutout.  The challenge was to find the appropriate background to play up the small scale of the chair. 

Click below to view the other entries.
The Big Photo Challenge 

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

NZ Book Council - Going West

Take a look at this YouTube video.  The book literally comes alive with paper-cut animation.

So creative!  Have an inspired day.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Monday, June 21, 2010

Flea Market Find

This was the weekend for a local flea/antique market in a nearby town.  Hubby and I were on the prowl for some fun deck or gardening decor.

This plant etagere was a great buy and came with 6 zinc plant trays.
We selected mostly foliage plants that varied in texture and complimented each other in shades of pink to wine and lime to balsam green.  Hope they thrive.   

Did you have a relaxing weekend?   Leave a comment and tell me what you did that was fun.
Have a great week.

Friday, June 18, 2010

The Winner Is...

The winner of the Spiral Style First Anniversary Giveaway
 is... Luv2Have
Thanks so much to everyone who entered the giveaway, became a follower of Spiral Style, hearted me at my Etsy shop and left comments this week.  I've started to follow some of your blogs now too.  Please keep the comments coming.  I look forward to this next year of blogging and learning.  

Have the BEST weekend and celebrate Fathers.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Radishes:Not Just a Crudite

When I plant a garden I always plant radishes.  I'm looking for instant gratification and radishes are just that, ready to eat in three weeks.  

Instead of the round, crimson globes, I plant the French breakfast variety.  High in vitamin C and various minerals, these little cuties are also antioxidant and anti-inflammatory rich.

I like to eat them them in the French manner, with some unsalted butter and a dusting of sea salt.
I tried this Martha Stewart recipe and was delighted.  A lovely blend of peppery radish, sweet mango and mild cucumber dressed with a light citrus vinaigrette.  Give it a try.  It would be a great accompaniment to a grilled steak on Father's Day.

Mango and Radish Salad with Lime Dressing
1 mango, peeled and cut into wedges,
1/2 English cucumber, thinly sliced
1 bunch radishes (about 8) halved or quartered
1 Tablespoon finely grated lime zest and 2 Tablespoons lime juice
2 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 Tablespoon honey
Coarse salt

Arrange mango, cucumber, and radishes on a platter.
Whisk together lime zest and juice, oil and honey.
Season with salt.
Drizzle dressing over salad, and season with salt.

Deadline for entries to First Blog-aversary giveaway end at noon, EST today!
Click here for details.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Natural Shore Decor

I love to be surrounded by natural decor.  I brought these treasures home from The Bahamas.
These natural sea sponges were gathered in an afternoon.
I have these photos, framed and hanging in my bedroom.  
They remind me a lazy days in the sun and on the beach.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Kitchen Staples Dinner

Monday night called for a quick prep dinner.I always keep arborio rice and chicken stock on hand and usually frozen shrimp and peas as well.  These ingredients, combined with with peas from the Farmers Market were the makings for a risotto.

Combined with a simple mesclun salad and a glass of wine, this effortless dinner was ready in 20 minutes.  Clean-up was simple too.  Keep the basics on hand and remember this recipe when you are short on time but want a delicious, and nutritious dinner.  Here's the recipe.

Risotto with Shrimp and Peas 
4 cups fish or chicken stock ( you could use vegetable stock if you wish)
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup chopped onion or green onion
1 cup arborio rice (it must be arborio)
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 - 1 cup fresh or frozen peas
1/2 pound shelled, deveined, raw shrimp ( fresh or thawed)
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, optional
1/2 -1 teaspoon grated lemon zest*

In a large saucepan, simmer stock.  In a heavy-bottomed pot, heat oil.  Add onion, and saute until it softens.  Add rice, and stir to coat.  Add the wine, and cook until liquid is absorbed.
Add one cup simmering stock to rice.  Stirring often, cook over medium-low heat until liquid is absorbed.  Repeat with second cup, and continue cooking, stirring often.  Repeat with third cup.
As rice becomes soft, but firm, add last cup of stock.  If peas are large, add them and cook about 4 minutes.  Then add shrimp.  If peas are small and tender, add them along with shrimp. Cook shrimp just 3 or 4 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper.  Add zest if desired.  Top with grated cheese.

Yield: 2-3 servings.  
*the lemon zest will brighten the dish
Bon Appetit

Monday, June 14, 2010

Spiral Style First Year Anniversary Giveaway

It is hard to believe that I've been blogging for a year!
Click here to view my first post.
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I've learned so much through blogging by researching fun and interesting topics to post and technology to share them in a creative and concise manor.  Also, by reading other blogs (see Blogs I Follow to the left of this post) I've been entertained and informed.  So, to celebrate, I'm hosting a giveaway.  The winner will receive 3 hammered silver bangles.  These are my biggest seller from my Etsy shop

To be eligible you must be a follower of Spiral Style.  Leave a comment and tell me how you follow (email or reader).  Extra entries if you "heart" my Etsy shop, Twitter, blog or Stumble this post or tell me about a favorite post in the past year.  Comments must be made by Thursday, June 17 at noon to be eligible.  Winner will be drawn at random and announced on Friday. 
  Thanks for following Spiral Style.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Strawberry Picking

It's strawberry season in Michigan

The fields were busy with "pickers" at 9 am.
          It didn't take long to fill a box.

Hubby and I had some shortcake after dinner
  I made some jam and put 
                                                            what was left of the berries,
                                                            in the freezer.

Shortcake recipe
2 cups flour
2 Tablespoons sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup shortening or butter
1 cup milk ( I used skim )

Heat oven to 450 degrees F
Grease 8x8 square pan or 8 inch round pan
Combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in bowl.  Cut in shortening or butter thoroughly until mixture looks like meal.  Stir in milk just until blended.  Pat into pan.
Bake 15 - 20 minutes or until golden brown on top.  Split pieces of shortcake and layer with berries and whipped cream and/or ice cream.  
8 servings

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Big Photo Challenge: New

The photo challenge this week is NEW

When I got back from vacation and checked my garden, I found these new tomatoes just getting started.  I watered the garden just  before taking the photo and like the look of the dripping water.

The Big Photo Challenge  Click here to see the other entries
                                                 for the challenge.

Etsy Father's Day Finds

Father's Day is fast approaching.  
Here are some ideas for that special guy.
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1 Small lure key chain cHiknBone $4.00  
2 Tear Drop Trailer Birdhouse BirdhouseBlessings $31
3 Bottle Stopper ikcdesign $20  
4 Vintage Nautical Compass Belt Buckle bmused $24  
5 Golf Notepad Personalized swankypress $13
6 We love you daddy Golf Ball Marker PunkyJane $14 
7 Two custom Luggage Tags OfTheFountain $22.95
8 Cable Tie toybreaker $30
9 Newspaper Kindle sleeve sakizome $16

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Summer Read

A "one afternoon" beach read

Summer Crossing: A Novel (Modern Library Paperbacks)
Summer Crossing: A Novel (Modern Library Paperbacks)
I read Summer Crossing a few weeks ago and want to pass it along as a good read for the summer.  If you've never read Capote, please consider this book.  This is Truman Capote's first novel, written when he was 19 and working for The New Yorker.  It was not published until 2005.  Click here to read how it was found and then published.  Capote's writing is quite eloquent for a first novel and a young writer.  

The story takes place in New York City after WWII.  The uber-wealthy McNeils are taking a trip to Europe on a ship, hence the title, Summer Crossing.  The disengaged parents of Grady McNeil make a hapless decision, leaving her alone in their New York penthouse for the summer.  18 year old Grady, a beautiful, waspy socialite, with a rebellious spirit, immediately runs to meet up with her non-waspy (Brooklyn, Jewish) love interest, Clyde.  Clyde, is 23 year old war veteran working as a parking lot attendant.  Grady is young and immature and makes some unwise choices.  Read the book to find out how Grady's decisions will impact her and her friends and family forever.  

Monday, June 7, 2010

A New Coat of Paint

A new coat of paint makes a room feel fresh and new



I like the cool, fresh look of the new paint.  Rather than the green/turquoise color, I find these colors more calming.  Benjamin Moore is my favorite paint.  I love bright, white trim so I used Decorators White in semi-gloss.  The lighter blue on the wall is called White Satin (2067-70) and the deeper blue on the bottom is Windmill Wings (2067-60) both in eggshell finish.

Tiger fish shower curtain  Garnet Hill $48

I used this cute fish-patterned shower curtain as a divider for the bathroom and bedroom as well as a valance for the bathroom window and as a screen for the walk-in closet. 

You may wonder how long it took to paint this space...well, 
it took 1 and 2/3 seasons of 30 Rock on DVD.  


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