Thursday, March 31, 2011

at west end: a unique vase

Genius Idea!
multi-hole vase $49
This vase with holes in the sides enables 6 blooms to look like a unique arrangement.  A great way to deal with droopy stems too.

Click here to view the new issue of Matchbook Magazine...Field Guide to a Charmed Life for some online inspiration.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Longchamp Longing

On my latest trip I notice quite a few Longchamp totes.

Longchamp Totes

                                                    Longchamp Totes 
I've been using this Land's End tote (notice the coffee stains)

It is a real "work-horse".  I keep it filled with umbrella, keys to the Bahamas house, lotion, tea bags, snacks, nail file, pens and other travel gear.  I really like the pockets which a Longchamp does not possess.
I think I'd really like Le Pliage tote.

The beauty of Le Pliage (which means bend or fold in French) is that you can fold it up and take it empty, then unfold and stuff with all the vacation "booty".
Le Pliage
How about this?  Customize your own Longchamp bag.
Choose bag style, handle style, color, hardware and optional personalization.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011


I'm back from vacation.  It was wonderful to be away and bask in the sunshine.  
 I thought I'd come back to Spring but it was COLD here in Michigan this morning.

There are some signs of Spring.  Can't wait for color in the garden.  I'm tired of "neutrals" like gray and beige.

Meanwhile, I'll settle for these colorful treats.  I'm addicted.


Friday, March 25, 2011

Island Houses

Houses in the settlement of Hope Town, Elbow Cay

Salt Sea, home of Shelley Malone
This house, Salt Sea, was featured in Coastal Living, February 2011.

This house is typical of Bahamian cottages architecture. 

Isn't this cute?
Almost makes you wish you were a gecko.

Happy Weekend everyone! 
See you on Monday when I'll be back to reality in Michigan.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Sugar Shack: Hope Town

The new home of the Sugar Shack...
...just a few step from the Public Dock in Hope Town.  

Not only a plethora of flavors but t-shirts, towels and souvenirs displayed with beach-theme panache.  Notice the surf board shelf beside the Haagen Dazs freezer and the buckets on the wall holding shirts.  

After a long, cold winter, one of the pleasures of warm weather is being able to open the windows and hear the birds.
A humming bird sitting still long enough for a portrait!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

A Day at the Beach

It was the most PERFECT day at the beach.

Weather report is for snow back home.  Lucky me.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Monday Musings: Planting Coconut Trees

While walking in Hope Town Saturday morning...
...I saw this gentleman biking with these coconut saplings over his shoulder.  He was on his way to plant them in someone's yard.  

Meatless Monday
We eat a lot of black beans, especially in the Bahamas.
This soup is very easy and VERY cheap.  $.62/can of beans X 2 plus some onion, chiles and spices and you have dinner.  Top with sour cream and a sprinkling of chopped cilantro or some shredded cheddar cheese.  Even though the recipe says "spicy", I would double the spices and maybe add some crushed red pepper or chopped chili in adobo.  Lots of fiber and protein to this soup.  Enjoy with a spinach salad and cornbread.  This would be a great meal to prepare on a boat on in a vacation house.  Easy to have the ingredients on hand.  Click here for the recipe.
Happy Monday everyone!

Friday, March 18, 2011


I'm celebrating the end of winter by taking a vacation in the Bahamas.
Elbow Cay

I'll try to post while I am away. 
 Have a wonderful weekend, dear readers.
I'm off!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Accessorizing: Fear and Flair

I do not pretend to be an interior designer.  I do enjoy styling my own interiors, especially seasonal changes.  I'm not afraid of color and hubby and I collect antique Persian rugs and vintage posters.  BUT, my fear is accessories.  I am not good at all with the "little things" that make a room "sing".  I think it may stem from my aversion to dusting.  If you have all sorts of "tchotchkes" sitting on a table, you eventually have to pick them up and dust them!  

I found an article in the recent Lonny Magazine:  How to: Accessorize with Flair.  

Elle:Decor arrived yesterday and I spotted some great examples of accessories and collections that have FLAIR!
from the article Renaissance Man

These photos make me want to go to flea markets in Europe and dust.    

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Olive & Cocoa

Recently I received a catalog from Olive & Cocoa and then perused their website.

Lovely floral arrangements I'd feel good about sending to someone.
Cognac and Cream   SicilianRose  Giselle Succulent Trough

I would love to receive any of these items as gifts.


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Ballet Flats

Ballet Flats are a fashion "necessity" for spring.  
Cole Haan $88
There are so many options.
Ballet Flats

Ballet Flats by Spiralstyle

 Yosi Samara $59 
Available in 25 colors
Ballet Flats

 These flats are more my comfort zone, evoking the style of my beloved driving mocs.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Monday Inspiration

It's Monday and we are all 1 hour sleep deprived today.
How about some inspiration?

These encouraging quotations were found on the website, From Up North (Typography Inspiration Gallery)

Happy Monday!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Spring Forward

Thinking of Spring!  This is encouraging.

I just received my seeds in the mail.

This is a good idea is
  • changing the water filter in your refrigerator
  • wash your makeup brushes
  • toss out your old mascara
  • change your furnace filter
Happy Weekend.  See you Monday.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Sunny Yellow as Antidote for Gray Skies

We've had lots (more) rain and gray skies here in Michigan.  I'm about to go to Home Depot for Ark building supplies.  I need some sun!
print by colorbee on Etsy

Love this umbrella for a narrow space


Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Ingredient of the Week: Coconut Oil

I LOVE coconut but always shied away from anything that contained coconut oil.
A saturated fat, coconut oil was considered an artery-clogger most commonly encountered on theatre popcorn.  Recently, however, coconut oil has become a health food favorite pet.
Just make sure that coconut oil is virgin or NOT partially hydrogenated.  It is the hydrogenation that creates trans fats.  Coconut oil is solid at room temperature and usually needs to be heated or melted for use in cooking.  For more information click here for the recent NY Times article.

Coconut oil is a wonderful baking ingredient.  It makes flaky pastries and whips for frosting making it a great butter substitute for vegans.  The oil imparts a slight coconut flavor.  I tried the Coconut Oil Poundcake with Almonds and Lime Zest recipe that was in the NY Times article.

The cake was moist with a dense crumb.  The coconut flavor was very slight with more of the lime and nutmeg flavor coming through.  This is a nice "tea" cake and I would definitely make this cake again.  I will also try using coconut oil in other favorite recipes.

NYTimes photo
Not just for baking, this shrimp stir-fry is made with coconut oil.

NYTimes photo
I can't wait to try these Coconut Oil Roasted Sweet Potatoes


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