Get Your Garden Growing Ready: Spring Gardening Tips

It’s time once again to ready, plan and plant spring flower, vegetable, and herb gardens.  Warmer weather and longer days naturally entice us to spend more time outdoors, and gardening is the outdoor activity many enjoy come spring.  Now is the time to get your garden growing ready with these spring gardening tips.

rooted garden letterboard

Rooted Garden

Spring Gardening  Tips

Not all planting zones are created equal.  Some planting zones, climates, and soils ready for spring gardening quicker than others.  Find your zone by clicking on the link: USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map

grow zone map

grow zone map key 1

For the gardenistas who live in a zone not ready for planting, now is the time to get your garden growing plan together.

Remember, too, indoor container, planter, and windowsill gardens grow indoors year-round.

Spring gardening tips help you to decide your flower, vegetable and herb garden of preference and get your deck, patio, porch, terrace, or windowsill garden growing ready.

Best Choice Products 3-Tier 4x4ft Elevated Wooden Garden Bed Planter Kit

Best Choice Products 3-Tier 4x4ft Elevated Wooden Garden Bed Planter Kit

Good soil is the foundation of a good grow, and a good spring cleaning of sorts prepares the soil for proper growth.  With a garden fork, gently work the soil with a soft dig to loosen the soil.  You’ll only need to loosen the soil in a vegetable or flower garden one time in the spring.

Consult a weather app, Farmers Almanac, or give your local extension service a call to find out when the threat of Jack Frost is past before planting your vegetable or flower garden.

Most vegetables and flowers require approximately six hours of full sun each day.  Choose the area of your yard, deck, patio, porch, terrace, or windowsill that gets the most sun during the day and plant accordingly.

No sun?  No problem.

Sam Stokes Nursery offers expert tips and options for flowers that grow in full and partial shade.

What and when to plant?

Tone on Tone

Old Farmers Almanac

For vegetables:

Top 10 Easiest to Grow Vegetables (according to The Old Farmer’s Almanac)

Tomatoes

Zucchini squash

Peppers

Cabbage

Bush beans

Lettuce

Beets

Carrots

Chard

Radishes

herbs-blue-walls-kitchen-house-home

House & Home

Mid to late March through May is a good time to get your spring vegetable and herb garden going and growing with tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, peas, squash, eggplant, okra, basil, oregano, sage, thyme, dill, chives, rosemary, and mint.

mountain-valley-seed-company-vegetable-herb-seeds

Grow Cooking Herbs, Parsley, Thyme, Cilantro, Basil, Dill, Oregano, Sage and Assortment of 12 Culinary Herb Seeds

clay pots garden

garden twine

 

4 Terracotta Pots In Wire Basket 4 Terracotta Pots In Wire Basket 

garden-markers-blue-white

If you’re wondering what vegetables to plant, think of food pairings.

Tomato and basil.

Spinach and lettuce.

Carrots and rosemary.

Corn and squash.

Good decorating pairings bring about a fresh look.   Good gardening pairings bring delicious flavor and delightful fragrance to the table.

Robertas-6-Piece-Sumo-Series-PetuniasRoberta’s 6-Piece Sumo Series Petunias

For flowers:

Mid March to early May is the rule of green thumb for planting perennials.  Annuals fare better when planted in late spring.

Clean out your flower beds by removing last year’s leftovers. Cut back last year’s perennials and ornamental grasses to encourage healthy new growth. Remove exhausted bulbs and divide perennials.

Consult your seed packet(s) for directions on when to plant, depth of planting, and spacing.

spring-scent-flowersColor comes to call in the spring garden.

Peonies, wisteria, hyacinth, lilacs, and lilies fill your garden with gorgeous color and fragrance.

lilacs kitchen

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Round Galvanized Metal Planter With Handles

Round Galvanized Metal Planter With Handles

Lilacs grow best when planted in fertile soil and placed in full sun.  Lilacs will not fully bloom if overwatered.  A layer of compost followed by a layer of mulch helps to retain moisture and combat weeds.

hummingbird

Hummingbirds and butterflies are fascinating little creatures to watch.  Southern Living offers spring gardening tips for almost everything gardening under the sun and shade.  Ragin’ Cajun Ruellia gives a shout out to my Louisiana roots.

hummingbird-moving

Bells of Fire™ Tecoma is another perennials tubular flower that attracts both hummingbirds and butterflies.  Click here to learn more plants to spring plant that will attract hummingbirds.

ruellia_ragin_cajun_bloom_power

Ragin’ Cajun® Ruellia

I love the Cameo Japanese flowering quince in my brother’s courtyard.

flowering-quince

A day trip to Forest Hill, Louisiana, better known as the nursery capital, to purchase a Cameo Japanese flowering quince is on the spring gardening agenda.

azaleas-pink

Azaleas in full color and full bloom means beauty and the beast I call pollen is all around as evidenced by this hot pink azalea bouquet and the pollen streams in the driveway.

pollen

Weeds are a thorn in the side, front, and back of any vegetable or flower garden.  Mulch cuts down on weeds, adds a layer of insulation, and keeps plant roots moist.

mulch-colorsDave the Builder used his new Craftsman Handheld Gas Leaf Blower to blow the pine needles off the roof and into the flower bed where it will be used as mulch.

Craftsman handheld blower

Excuse our work in progress mess.

pine needles

Fresh from the produce department tomatoes will do for now, but there is no substitute for fresh home garden tomatoes.

garden-tomatoes

To give your tomato plants a good grow, feed the soil with a small amount of fertilizer and compost at planting time.

Jobes Organic Vegetable and Tomato Plant Food FertilizerJobes Organic Vegetable and Tomato Plant Food Fertilizer

Plant the roots as deep as possible.

Freshly planted tomato plants will require a daily healthy watering for a couple of weeks after planting to properly seep into the soil and moisten the area.   Garden tomatoes require at least 1-2 inches of water a week.

Low and slow applies to watering tomatoes.  Water the plants low at the stem and water slowly.

Tomato plants are slow drinkers. Flooding the area is not what we’re going for here.

miracle-gro-garden-hose-1

Miracle-Gro Drip and Soaker Kit

Water your tomato crop once every two or three days at the height of summer.  Early morning is the best time to water.

As summer temps soar, you may want to water the plants both in the early morning and early evening on the days you water.

spring gardening tips

Bacon sandwiches, homemade hamburgers, fresh from the garden salads, and spring to summer dishes deliciously begin and end with the homegrown tomato.

As I typed fresh from the garden salads, it reminded me of the story a friend shared with me about a dinner menu conversation she had with her husband.  The friend asked her husband what he wanted for dinner.  The husband answered in perfect course order beginning with, his words not hers nor mine, a little house salad.

Curious about what exactly the husband thought a little house salad was, the friend asked the husband to expound.

“Well, you know, it’s a little salad you make at the house.”

All I know is the husband’s vegetable garden produced the best tomatoes, cucumbers, banana peppers, squash, and radishes that went into many a fresh spring to summer salad mixed and enjoyed at their house.

seed-packet

Leafy greens and vegetables star in the latest entertaining trend, the edible table runner.

different-kinds-of-fresh-herbs

bibb-lettuce

gurney-vegetable-herb-seeds

I’m learning more and more the best way to go in spring and summer entertaining is to set a casual and inviting table, keep the menu, ingredients, music, and conversation fresh and simple, and have plenty of homemade buttermilk dressing on hand.

homemade-buttermilk-dressing-1

garden-boots-spring

House & Home

Spring Gardening Tips, Tools, & Accessories

firm-grip-gardening-gloves

Firm Grip Garden Gloves

Protecting your hands, skin, and feet is a must.

Sunburn, dry and weathered hands, and wet feet do not a happy gardener make.

Tirrinia Ladies Wide Brim Sun Flap Cover Cap Adjustable Beach Gardening Hat

Tirrinia Ladies Wide Brim Sun Flap Cover Cap Adjustable Beach Gardening Hat

gardening boots

Rain Boot Wellies Waterproof for Gardening

gardeners-soapCrabtree & Evelyn Gardeners Exfoliating Soap

dove-intensive-cream

I bought two Dove Nourishing Care Intensive-Creams on at Dollar Tree, and am so glad I did.  The formula is rich, smells divine, and has good staying power without being greasy.  I like it so much I bought five more last week.

It gets my perfect for gardening hands seal of approval.

gardening goodies

Tools

Fiskars® 3pc DuraFrame Garden Tools Set
Ames Poly Scoop 
Barebones Living Small Garden Scissors
3pc Garden Tool Set – Smith & Hawken™

Planters

White Washed Brown Faux Woven Planter 
Wakefield Handmade Anduze Manchette Planter
Aged Charcoal Cast Stone Flower Rectangular Planter
Square Charcoal Cast Stone Column Planter

Watering Cans

Metal Watering Can – Smith & Hawken™
Achla Designs Haystack Pitcher Watering Jug
Herb Print Watering Can
Perfect Pour Copper Watering Can

Garden Goodies

Kalani Large Sea Grass Utility Basket with Wood Handle
Esschert Design USA Ceramic Plant Markers
Sontax Rolling Garden Cart with Tool Tray
Deluxe Metal Pulsating Sprinkler with Tripod

 

A lovely garden statue accentuates the design and the beauty of your garden.

Children First Love Statue

Children First Love Statue

Cast stone and terracotta planters in neutral tones instill a touch of European elegance.

elegant-planters

Winter is in the rearview mirror, and our sights and tastes are set on the spring flowers and vegetables planted and produced in the spring yard, deck, patio, porch, terrace, or windowsill garden.

spring signature

Show & Tell

Easter Table Decor Suggestions

The sounds, scents, and sights that accompany spring beautification curb appeal, as well as inquires about my Easter table decor suggestions, signals spring is sprung.

curb appeal Southern Home

Southern Home

Spring officially begins this Wednesday (March 20).

Easter will be here in thirty-two days.

easter-table-decor-suggestions

Gardenistas and decoristas alike realize that’s a small window of time to plant and plan.

Easter definition throw pillow

Emails and push notifications from home decor sites alert subscribers to what’s new in store for the Easter coming together of family and friends season.  If you live in an area of the world that is retail deficient, ordering from online outlets opens up the retail world to you.

Keep in mind you have to allow ample time for sourcing, selecting, ordering, and arrival.

After a particularly disappointing shipping arrival time incident,  I realized the importance of getting my decorating plan finalized and my holiday decor ordering done sooner rather than later.

cottontail-rabbit

Remember me telling you all about the bunny rabbit Dave the Builder found in one of our flower beds?

Cottontail instinctively knew when it was time for Dave to drive in the gate.  He would sit in the driveway close to Dave’s parking spot waiting for Dave to come home.  After the odd couple greeted each other, Cottontail would hop to it, following Dave into the house.  He would wait ever so patiently at Dave’s feet for Dave to pick him up and hold him.

I include at least one rabbit themed piece of decor in my Easter table decor suggestions in honor of Cottontail.

It’s an Easter table decor suggestions must.  Our pets touch our hearts and our home decorating choices.

As far as the rest of the look goes, I select pieces able to make the decorating transition from spring to summer.

 

bunny cookie jar

Figural Bunny Cookie Jar by Arlington Designs

Scrolling through the home section on the TJ Maxx website resulted in two super cute, super affordable bunny pieces.  The first of two ideas is to use the Figural Bunny Cookie Jar by Arlington Designs as an ice bucket.

Easter grass

I’ll set up a beverage station on the dining room sideboard for our Easter luncheon.  To implement the idea, first I’ll place a dinner plate or charger  on top of a mirror placemat to protect the finish of the sideboard from water spots.

The cookie jar will sit in the middle of the plate.  A thick layer of Easter grass or paper shreds placed around the bottom and sides (if need be) of the bunny  will hide the plate-charger and the mirror placemat.

speckled-ceramic-robin-eggs-blue

Creative Co-op HD4474 Blue Speckled Ceramic Robin Eggs

Complete the look by “hiding” decorative ceramic or plastic Easter eggs in the grass or shreds.

Pastel Gingham Easter Egg FillerPastel Gingham Easter Egg Filler

 

cement bunny decor

Modern Bunny 9.5in Cement Bunny Decor

The cement bunny will be a two, two, two uses in one piece as Easter table decor now and spring into summer garden decor later.

Rainbow Rock Candy Sticks

Rainbow Rock Candy Sticks

The rainbow colors of these rock candy sticks remind me of the ones in the traditional Easter egg dye kits.

A glass of iced tea served with a rock candy stick adds an extra kick of sugar sweet swizzle and stir.

Signed Fenton Opalescent Basket With Pink Handle

Signed Fenton Opalescent Basket With Pink Handle

A tried and true idea in my Easter table decor suggestions bag of tricks is to use a vintage glass basket as a dish for garnishes or as a condiment bowl.

It’s makes a lovely presentation.

It is said that iced tea is the house wine of the South.   We steep, sugar, and serve the stuff year round.  Bridal and baby showers, brunches, luncheons, holiday dinners, and other celebratory general fancy-schmancy occasions call for upping the iced tea recipe game.

Governor's Mansion Summer Peach Tea Punch

Governor’s Mansion Summer Peach Tea Punch

Ingredients

3 family-size tea bags

2 cups loosely packed fresh mint leaves

1 (33.8-oz.) bottle peach nectar

½ (12-oz.) can frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed

½ cup Simple Sugar Syrup (see recipe below)

1 (1-liter) bottle ginger ale, chilled

1 (1-liter) bottle club soda, chilled

Garnish: fresh peach wedges

Directions

Bring 4 cups water to a boil in a medium saucepan; add tea bags and mint leaves.  Boil 1 minute; remove from heat.  Cover and steep 10 minutes.

Discard tea bags and mint.  Pour into a 1-gal. container; add peach nectar, lemonade concentrate, and Simple Sugar Syrup.  Cover and chill 8 to 24 hours.

Pour chilled tea mixture into a punch bowl or pitcher.  Stir in ginger ale and club soda just before serving.  Garnish, if desired.

Simple Sugar Syrup

Ingredients

2 cups sugar

1 cup water

Directions

Bring sugar and water to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat.  Boil, stirring occasionally, 4 minutes or until sugar is dissolved and mixture is clear.  Cool to room temperature (about 30 minutes).

– Southern Living – Junior League of Austin, Texas – Photo: Jennifer Davick Styling: Lydia DeGaris Pursell

lilacs

This photo serves no purpose other than being just a pretty reminder of the in full bloom splendor of spring coming to a lawn, garden, planter, or centerpiece near you this Wednesday.

peony picnic napkin set

Peony Picnic Napkin Set 6

 

Godinger Claro Blue Highball Glasses, Set of FourGodinger Claro Blue Highball Glasses, Set of Four

Set Of 4 Adelaide Dinner Plates 222 Fifth222 Fifth Set Of 4 Adelaide Dinner Plates

pink-yellow-roses

Fresh, faux, or a mixing of both, remarkably gorgeous flower arrangements need not be expensive.  Some of the most impressive flower arrangements are simple in nature and elegant in statement.

Begin in your yard and garden, and build your arrangement from there.

Hull Pottery Woodland Pink Basket Hull Pottery Woodland Pink Basket

Garden roses mixed with dusty miller, bridal wreath, fern fronds, and fresh seeded eucalyptus brings spring beauty to your dining table or sideboard.

cabbage-pattern-serving-bowl  Farmhouse Cabbage Serving Bowl from Martha Stewart Collection

Container ideas range from serving bowls and art pottery baskets to ornamental cabbages and decorative cement planters.

spring-diy-flower-arrangement

Cabbage Arrangement

Anthropologie Cement Tulip Pot

Anthropologie Cement Tulip Pot Collection

Easter Table Decor Suggestions:

Garden Variety Salad Plate Set

Garden Variety Salad Plate Set

 

Mikasa Silk Floral Teal Appetizer PlateMikasa Silk Floral Teal Appetizer Plate

Made In Portugal Cabbage Serving Dish

Olfaire Pottery Made In Portugal Cabbage Serving Dish

Gingham Robins Egg Dinner PlateGingham Robins Egg Dinner Plate

Delicious desserts have become works of culinary art.  Do your Easter desserts justice with an impressive plating presentation.

berry-cream-tartlets-easy-easter-desserts

Very Berry Cream Tartlets

Included in my Easter table decor suggestions repertoire is the use of at least one vintage piece.

Vintage pieces possess charming features, distinguishing colors, and delicate patterns able to gracefully stand alone or easily mix with new traditional favorites.

Floral Cake Plate from Germany with 2 HandlesFloral Cake Plate from Germany with 2 Handles

coconut cake with rose topper

Rae Dunn Happy Spring Cake Stand

Rae Dunn Happy Spring Cake Stand

I don’t always have the best luck when shopping the shelves at my favorite local treasure shop, but on my last visit I spied this darling figurine behind a piece that wouldn’t normally catch my eye.

The colors, condition, and price sold the piece, and it fits in perfectly with my Easter decorating theme.

Fenton-basket-blue

These Easter table decor suggestions invite a simple yet elegant charm factor to the spring get-together and Easter celebration.

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Show & Tell

Peaceful Diversion: Pretty Pictures and Photos

The saying  “Life is what happens to you while you are making other plans”  hit home last week for me and Dave the Builder.  We went from peaceful, easy Sunday to Dave being taken into emergency surgery Monday morning.  All three of the doctors on the case used the word stat, and that is a word that will get your attention real fast.

I’ll take our everyday, boring to most, uneventful life over curveballs and beyond your control situations any day.

Staying strong in faith, in prayer, and in positive attitude is our game plan.

The positive attitude part took a direct hit when our veterinarian called with the sad news that Sir Kitty had taken a turn for the worse, and the end was near for our beloved twelve year old cat.

It was a witch of a week to say the least.

Getting lost in the pretty pictures and photos from social networking sites and shelter magazines is a gorgeous source of peaceful diversion and blog post inspiration.

Posting plays a large role in my normal routine, and at the moment normal and routine is essential.  The situation of late may not be pretty, but these  pictures and photos sure are.

Claude-Monet-gardens

Claude Monet Gardens – Photo: Francis Hammond – Architectural Digest

blue-door-foyer

Pinterest

Irises By Claude MonetIrises By Claude Monet

Alaska Range at Polychrome OverlookAlaska Range at Polychrome Overlook

Leta-Austin-Foster-associates

Leta Austin Foster & Associates

European Hare print

Natural Study European Hare Print

mulberry-plantation-south-carolina

Mulberry Plantation – Architectural Digest

pretty pictures and photos

Pinterest

Brunschwig & Fils

House & Garden

joshua-trees-at-sunrise

Denise Taylor-Getty Images-House Beautiful

Keep us in your thoughts and prayers, and I’ll be back with you all next week.

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Show & Tell

Mardi Gras Party Good Time

Louisiana is often referred to as the Boot due to its shape.  I think that’s an appropriate observation seeing how we do love to kick up our heels and pass a Mardi Gras party good time.

beads-doubloonsPurple, Green, and Gold Beads and Doubloons

Louisiana loves to throw a party, and what makes a good party is great food, drink, and conversations about great Mardi Gras food and drink.  Last Wednesday I got a call from my nephew on just this subject.

Dong Phuong Bakeshop

The Mardi Gras king cake is a Carnival staple, and people do have their favorites.

My favorite?

I thought the chocolate cinnamon king cake from a local market the one that takes the king cake, but that was until my nephew gifted the Places In The Home gang with a cinnamon king cake from Dong Phuong Bakeshop.

A king cake connoisseur in his own right, he too thought he had a chosen favorite until his coworker brought a cinnamon king cake from Dong Phuong Bakeshop in east New Orleans to the office for a Mardi Gras party good time king cake celebration.

It was king cake love at first bite.

You know how it is when you discover a new whatever and you like/love it so much you want to show and tell it with your inner circle, gang, tribe, or Mardi Gras krewe?

That’s exactly the case in this king cake scenario.

He placed an order for twelve cinnamon king cakes from Dong Phuong Bakeshop.  The window for shipment had just closed, so he drove from Baton Rouge to New Orleans to pick up the order.

When you’ve got a craving for king cake, you do what you have to do to get one.

Or twelve.

His friend happened to be driving up to Central Louisiana the following day, so my nephew asked him if he would make a king cake delivery to Places In The Home.

cinnamon-king-cake

Now the Places In The Home gang knows what all the Dong Phuong cinnamon king cake excitement is about.

dong phuong king cake

Right off the bat, I was impressed with the artwork and the font used on the cake box.

share-the-joy-of-Mardi-Gras

It’s the same exact font I use for the Places In The Home header and sidebar.

DP-Bakeshop-East-NOLA

Love the font.

king-cake-colors

Love the king cake!

King cake is a Mardi Gras must have, a tradition beginning on January 6th and ending on Fat Tuesday.

The entire season and celebration of Carnival is a Mardi Gras party good time process.

second-line

Not all Mardi Gras celebrations are created equal.  From parish to parish, Louisiana is truly a melting pot of customs, traditions, and cultures.

However, all Louisianians celebrate Mardi Gras on a local purple, green, and gold grand scale.

Mardi-Gras-porchNew Orleans Today

Throughout the state, Mardi Gras revelers and Carnival decoristas bedeck the halls, doors, porches, fences, and facades.

Mardi Gras parade prep

Parade route positions are prime real estate, staked out and claimed for optimum viewing and catching prized throws.

Plutocrat Second LinePlutocrat Second Line

Krewe floats stand ready to roll, and neighborhood block parties are planned, prepped, and positioned  for a Mardi Gras promenade.

beignets at Cafe du Monde

Beignets at Café du Monde

It’s hard not to find yourself in a Mardi Gras party good time state of mind when you have a cup of café au lait in hand.

cafe au lait

A traditional crawfish boil brings the flavor to the Mardi Gras party good time celebration.

The sweetness of the king cake complements the robust spice and heat that flavors a crawfish boil.

C’est si bon!

boiled-crawfish

This time of year blended with the taste of Mardi Gras keeps the calls from the Canadian snowbirds coming.

Cooking up a pot of Louisiana gumbo and a traditional King Cake from this recipe from Southern Living will satisfy the craving, please the sweet tooth, and feed the soul.

traditional king cake

Southern Living Magazine – Photo by Beth Dreiling

Traditional King Cake

Ingredients

1 (16-ounce) container sour cream

1/3 cup sugar

¼  cup butter

1 teaspoon salt

2 (¼-ounce) envelopes active dry yeast

½  cup warm water (100° to 110°)

1 tablespoon sugar

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

6 to 6 ½ cups bread flour*

1/3 cup butter, softened

½  cup sugar

1 ½  teaspoons ground cinnamon

Directions

Cook first 4 ingredients in a medium saucepan over low heat, stirring often, until butter melts.  Set aside, and cool mixture to 100° to 110°.

Stir together yeast, ½ cup warm water, and 1 tablespoon sugar in a 1-cup glass measuring cup; let stand 5 minutes.

Beat sour cream mixture, yeast mixture, eggs, and 2 cups flour at medium speed with a heavy-duty electric stand mixer until smooth.  Reduce speed to low, and gradually add enough remaining flour (4 to 4 ½ cups) until a soft dough forms.

Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic (about 10 minutes).   Place in a well-greased bowl, turning to grease top.

Cover and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 1 hour or until dough is doubled in bulk.

Punch down dough, and divide in half. Roll each portion into a 22- x 12-inch rectangle.  Spread 1/3 cup softened butter evenly on each rectangle, leaving a 1-inch border.  Stir together ½ cup sugar and cinnamon, and sprinkle evenly over butter on each rectangle.

Roll up each dough rectangle, jelly-roll fashion, starting at 1 long side.  Place one dough roll, seam side down, on a lightly greased baking sheet.  Bring ends of roll together to form an oval ring, moistening and pinching edges together to seal.  Repeat with second dough roll.

Cover and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 20 to 30 minutes or until doubled in bulk.

Bake at 375° for 14 to 16 minutes or until golden.  Slightly cool cakes on pans on wire racks (about 10 minutes).  Drizzle Creamy Glaze evenly over warm cakes; sprinkle with colored sugars, alternating colors and forming bands. Let cool completely.

Cream Cheese-Filled King Cake: Prepare each 22- x 12-inch dough rectangle as directed.  Omit 1/3 cup softened butter and 1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon.  Increase ½ cup sugar to ¾ cup sugar.  Beat ¾  cup sugar; 2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened; 1 large egg; and 2 teaspoons vanilla extract at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth.  Spread cream cheese mixture evenly on each dough rectangle, leaving 1-inch borders.  Proceed with recipe as directed.

*6 to 6 ½ cups all-purpose flour may be substituted.

Creamy Glaze

Purple, green, and gold-tinted sparkling sugar sprinkles

-Southern Living

The weather is not wanting to cooperate, but Louisiana doesn’t let a little rain dampen the Mardi Gras spirit.   The parades are rolling, the party atmosphere is intoxicating, and time-honored traditions and customs will be well represented.

The Boot is kicking up its heels in Mardi Gras party good time style.

Laissez les bons temps rouler!

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Show & Tell

Winter Blues

Gray days of February challenge one to find the silver lining of winter.  Bare, austere, and windswept conditions lead to extended periods of time spent indoors keeping company with the winter blues.

winter blues

Winter Blues

Curling up with a good book is an excellent and cozy choice of boredom buster, but I require a stronger dose of sound and sight to cure my winter blues.

Umberto Pasti Home

Umberto Pasti – House & Garden

Discover Weekly is one of my go-to Spotify playlists.

Loaded with new music finds and classic rewinds, it’s the sound to the sight part of the cure- a keyboard session of scrolling and discovering beautiful and inspiring images in/on designers portfolios, digital issues of shelter magazines, Pinterest, and Tumblr.

foodiesfeed.com_home-office-station-with-a-cup-of-coffee

Foodiesfeed

On a day like today when it’s particularly damp and dreary outside, a bit of quality time spent with a cup of tea, soft tunes, and lovely images is more in line with the warm, tranquil and color kissed thoughts of spring and summer blues.

Yves Klein quote

Pinterest

Patience is a twenty-two days from today marks spring’s arrival virtue.  To pass the time, I thought a share and scroll post full of beautiful images featuring the color blue just the ticket for keeping the winter blues at bay.

pyne-hollyhock-indigo-by-fschumacherPyne Hollyhock Indigo by Schumacher

Cathy Kincaid Interiors

Cathy Kincaid Interiors

Maria Theresia by Martin van Meytens

Maria Theresia by Martin van Meytens

Carolina Herrera

Carolina Herrera

blue-foyer-sitting-room

Southern Home Magazine – Photography by Dustin Peck

Staircase at Chateau Versailles, Paris, FranceStaircase at Chateau Versailles, Paris, France

Suzanne Kasler Interiors

Rebecca De Ravenel PHOTOGRAPHY BY AMY NEUNSINGER

Domino- Photography by Amy Neunsinger

blue-sky-ceiling-chandelier

Domino-Photography by Jessica Ann Kirby

Pretty is on trend for 2019, and these winter blues beauties trend gorgeous.

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Show & Tell

Accessories, Accents, and Home Decor Inspired By The Oscars

Editor’s Note:  This Home Decor Inspired by the Oscars post is an updated and refreshed remake of the original. 

If A Star Is Born can be remade four times…

A Star Is Born Posters

Motion picture award season comes to a glorious golden and the Oscar goes to crescendo Sunday, February 24 with the broadcast of the 91st Academy Awards, better known  as the Oscars.

Oscars statuesTown & Country Magazine – Getty Images

Hollywood glitz and glamour arrives at The Dolby Theater in regal manner on Oscars Sunday to celebrate pure Hollywood artistry and the artists, actors, producers, directors, memorable movie sets, locations, sound, and scores that produce legendary moments in film.

Designers will meet and master the creative task of translating Oscars best to accessories, accents, and home decor inspired by the Oscars.

The Dolby Theater The Dolby Theater

Throwbacks to the splendor of classic Hollywood, today’s pop culture, red carpet fashions, best costume design considered to be absolute works of art, and the visually impressive cinematic color palettes of the best cinematography category serve as an artist’s muse in the design concept of accessories, accents, and home decor inspired by the Oscars.

Classic elegance.

Glamour and glitz.

Timeless sophistication.

Avant-guard style with give them something to talk about overtones.

There is a distinct correlation between the allure of the beauty created on the silver screen and home decor inspired by the Oscars.

Suzan Fellman LLC

Suzan Fellman LLC

Ebanista-sconce

Reine Sconce

Global Views Katherine Acrylic ArmchairGlobal Views Katherine Acrylic Armchair

Jack Nicholson Helen Hunt

Helen Hunt – Jack Nicholson – Oscars 1998

Hutton Wilkinson

Hutton Wilkinson – One Kings Lane

“I live for old movies. You can learn all about decorating, table manners, chic dressing, and stylish living from old black-and-white films!”

— Hutton Wilkinson

emerald green drop earrings

Who can forget Angelina Jolie’s gorgeous fashion statement emerald earrings from the 81st Academy Awards?

'Deep Emerald' Graphic Art Print on Canvas

‘Deep Emerald’ Graphic Art Print on Canvas

Hollywood excels in the art of color with its influence emulated in design and decorating through a technicolor infused palette divine.

the.rug.company.portfolio.interiors.hallway

Carnival Rug by Paul Smith for The Rug Company

Emerald green received a rave review, and hit the fashion runway and design world with a vengeance.

emerald-green-serving-platters

A&B Home Set of 2 Modern Chic Green Trays

Aalten Velvet Ottoman

Aalten Velvet Ottoman

Color, pattern and texture deliver a stellar performance on both the big screen and in an intimate space.

dramatic closetTraditional Home

Venus chair by Christopher GuyVenus chair by Christopher Guy

Gilded Shell Grotto ChairGilded Shell Grotto Chair

"Extreme Romance" Limited Edition of 20“Extreme Romance” Limited Edition of 20 – Rimi Yang

Fredrick Ramond Vida 13-Light 36 Wide Sputnik Chandelier - Burnished GoldFredrick Ramond Vida Sputnik Chandelier

Hollywood films, much like design styles, are categorized by genre.

Where drama, suspense, horror or mystery is the favored choice of one, romance, adventure, musical and documentary is the favored choice of another.

art-deco-style-bathroom

Old House Online

Tastes vary from genre to decade to design style, making it necessary to produce pieces that broaden audience appeal.

Tiara Silver Granello Chandelier

Tiara Silver Granello Chandelier

Daniel Romualdez Architect home Los Angeles

Architectural Digest

There Wasn't a Thing Left to Say McDermott McGough

There Wasn’t a Thing Left to Say – McDermott & McGough

A modern take on the designs of classic Hollywood style and crystal wall sconces in gold gilt glitz both capture the essence of Hollywood opulence.

jessica-lagrange-interiors-portfolio-interiors-traditional-bathroom

Jessica Lagrange Interiors

 

Brass and Crystal Sconce With Peacock Motif

Brass and Crystal Sconce With Peacock Motif

Mario BuattaMario Buatta

alexandra naranjo designsAlexandra Naranjo Designs

Bohara Trellis Hand-Tufted Wool Gray Area Rug

Bohara Trellis Hand-Tufted Wool Gray Area Rug

art-deco-living-room

Kim Smith Photo

Art Deco Peacock Maidens Lamp

Art Deco Peacock Maidens Lamp

Caracole Classic Neutral Cream Gold Bullion Barrel Accent ChairCaracole Classic Neutral Cream Gold Bullion Barrel Accent Chair

Alexandra Naranjo Designs

Alexandra Naranjo Designs

Scala Murano Chandelier

Scala Murano Chandelier

Raymond Mirror

Raymond Mirror

twiggy mirrorFrederick Cooper Twiggy Mirror

trellis-wallpaper

Renea Abbott

Arlington Baroque Mirror

Arlington Baroque Mirror

Simpatico Murano Glass Chandelier, Gold

Simpatico Murano Glass Chandelier, Gold

Traditional BBL16 Dynasty Area Rug

Traditional BBL16 Dynasty Area Rug

Paul R Williams Architect

Paul Revere Williams – American Architect

Paul-R-Williams-Classic-HollywoodPaul R. Williams: Classic Hollywood Style

Lorenzo Castillo for The Rug Company

Lorenzo Castillo for The Rug Company

Halle Berry – (Photo by SGranitz/WireImage)

floral rose pillowRose Throw Pillows

Eichholtz Boucheron French Country Red Fringe Armless Slipper ChairEichholtz Boucheron French Country Red Fringe Armless Slipper Chair

Wiggle Chair MerlotWiggle Chair Merlot

Nicole-Kidman-Oscars-red-carpet

Nicole Kidman in Balenciaga 

Goddard design group

Goddard Design Group

Steilish-Interiors-Architecture-photo-credit-Nickolas-SargentSteilish Interiors & Architecture- Photo Credit: Nickolas Sargent

Jennifer-Lawrence-2013-Academy-Awards

Jennifer Lawrence in Dior Couture – PopSugar Fashion

Alva Reidar Settee

Alva Reidar Settee

 

Barry Dixon for Arteriors Aramis SconceBarry Dixon for Arteriors Aramis Sconce

 

Uttermost 5032 Destello Starburst Rounded Mirror

Uttermost 5032 Destello Starburst Rounded Mirror

 

Jacinta Contemporary Silver Leaf Accent Cabinet

Jacinta Contemporary Silver Leaf Accent Cabinet

Glossed and glamorous ebonized walnut walls reflect the light of the center chandelier from Thomas Grant Chandeliers located in Dallas, Texas.

Ebonized wallsPaper City

The Tiepolo 16 Light Chandelier somewhat resembles the chandelier in the image.  It is inspired by the chandeliers of the Baroque Ca Rezzonico Palace.  Delicate flower petals made with strands of Clear Firenze or Swarovski crystal beads are set into a Allegri’s Sienna Bronze frame. The stems are finished in Allegri’s Silver Leaf, a spectacular Hollywood ending.

Tiepolo 16 Light Chandelier, Firenze Clear

Tiepolo 16 Light Chandelier, Firenze Clear

Hand-tufted Black White Zebra Animal Print Glamorous Wool Area RugHand-tufted Black White Zebra Animal Print Glamorous Wool Area Rug

gallery-1456426623-gettyimages-140071094Harpers Bazaar

Inspiration is everywhere, and the legendary red carpet showcasing Hollywood on parade style inspires fashion mavens and decoristas alike.

White Sofa, Eichholtz Gaby, Black

White Sofa, Eichholtz Gaby, Black

Fashion influences align with interior design, and the result is a smashing  production scripted by icons, legends, and design stars of the industry.

colacion-studio-portfolio-interiors-art-deco-living-room

Colacion Studio

rougier-palm-leaf-lucite-lamps Rougier Palm Leaf Lucite Lamps- a Pair

 

Folie nightstand

Folie Nightstand

The golden era of Hollywood interiors lives on through marquee chandeliers, lavish ceiling medallions and gold leaf ceilings.

gold leaf ceilingGold Leaf by Zuber Inc via Traditional Home 

And the Oscar goes to…

Show & Tell

I ♥ Valentine’s Day Heart Shaped Ideas

Valentine’s Day heart shaped ideas get to the heart of the Valentine’s Day dinner, dessert, and design matter.

red-shades-chandelier

Farrow & Ball

Have them seeing red on Valentine’s Day.

watercolor-hearts-pattern-animated-gif

Red makes a Valentine’s Day color love connection.

pink roses in basket

Style Me Pretty – Photography by Ramona Keveza

I have become a big fan of the roses in a box presentation.

The price tag that comes with a dozen roses in a box- not so much.

Here’s what I’m thinking:

Pick up this bright pink heart-shaped paper gift box by Spritz at Target.  Line the bottom of the box and the inner lid with a heart-shaped paper doily.

Pick up a dozen red roses at one of the many flower tents pitched and perfect for your Valentine’s Day flower needs.

Cut plastic wrap to fit the inside of the box.  Drop in a fresh flower floral foam round disk or cut a square one to fit.  Add water to soak disk.

Cut the rose stems to where the roses rest slightly above the rim of the box.  Pack the roses tight and graduate the height of a select few.

At presentation time, loosely weave pink silk ribbon in a zigzag pattern over the top of the bouquet.

roses-red-pink-heart-shaped-box

A Valentine’s Bit of Trivia-

Considered a founding pioneer in the American Valentine’s industry, Esther Allen Howland first introduced Valentine’s Day cards in the United States in 1849.

Howland-valentine

Esther Howland

Quite taken with an ornate English Valentine she received at nineteen, Esther Allen Howard replicated a styling of the card using intricate paper lace and floral decoration details.

Handcrafted Valentine InspirationHandcrafted Valentine Inspiration

The skeleton keys in the above image give me an idea.

decorative skeleton keysK&Company Embellishments Life’s Journey Keys Metal Art

A decorative skeleton key tied with gorgeous silk or vintage floral ribbon becomes a unique you are the key to my heart gift keepsake.

vintage floral ribbon

Vintage Floral Ribbon

Haute Couture Satin Ribbon

Haute Couture Satin Ribbon

Valentine’s Day free printable gift tags from Ann at One Sutton Place.  Click the link to Ann’s blog where you can download these darling Valentine’s Day gift tags.

valentines-day-free-printable-gift-tags

Dining in for Valentine’s Day?

This video by Blossom shows instructions for a super easy rose fold.

Here’s a Valentine’s gift from me to you, my  The Power of Love playlist to set the mood.

Dinner, dessert, and Valentine’s Day heart-shaped ideas.

✓ ✓ and ✓.

Did someone say boozy bouquet?

Flowers.

Adult beverage.

I call this a DIY Valentine’s Day winner.

red heart wreathGet to the heart of the Valentine’s Day matter by working with a theme.  In this case, Valentine’s Day heart shaped ideas.

heart-shaped-rib-eye-steak-HEB

Put some sizzle in your Valentine’s Day grill to thrill dinner with a heart-shaped ribeye steak from HEB.

heart-shaped lasagna

A heart-Shaped lasagna bundt-buon appetito!  Get the recipe from Food Network.

Sourdough Heart RollsKiss the calorie counting goodnight and enjoy sourdough heart shaped rolls from Boudin Bakery in San Francisco.

heart-shaped-cheese-Aldi

Heart-shaped cheeses from Aldi.

70-count Chick-n-Minis

Go fast food gourmet with a heart-shaped tray of Chick-fil-A Chick-n-Minis.

heart-shaped-pizza

Say it with a heart-shaped pizza Valentine Bundle from Pizza Hut.

Metallic Shaped Heart Dinner Plates

Keep the theme going with these metallic heart shaped dinner plates from Party City.

dark chocolate pudding

Dark Chocolate Pudding

Chocolate is in the Valentine’s Day spotlight, and it doesn’t get any better than dark chocolate pudding.

valentines-day-heart-shaped-ideas

Valentine’s Day heart shaped ideas are just another way to have fun with your Valentine’s Day presentation plans.  The dazzle is in the details, the delicious is in the recipe, the joy is in the sharing, and the  is in this Happy Valentine’s Day post.

 

Show & Tell

His and Her Valentine’s Day Gift Guide

It’s time for a His and Her Valentine’s Day gift guide featuring objects of affection for your object of affection.

Rose Hill Design Studio CalendarRose Hill Designs Studio

Many a thought and heart is zeroed in on February 14th.

Flowers?  Candy?  Dine out or dine in?  Red or White?  What about the gift?

You’ve got gift questions, and I’ve got gift answers.

His and Hers Valentine's Day Gift Guide

Celebrate Valentine’s Day Together Love Oblong Throw Pillow

These His and Her Valentine’s Day gift ideas offer a variety of how I do love thee gift and price point options for your Valentine’s Day gift giving consideration.

I options.

Genuine White Diamond Sterling Silver 10.7mm Stud Earrings

1/2 CT. T.W. Genuine White Diamond Sterling Silver Stud Earrings

Sparkling style comes in a variety of price points.

Heart-Shaped Red Rose Jewelry Gift Box Case for Ring EarringHeart-Shaped Red Rose Jewelry Gift Box Case for Ring Earring

Bella Luce® 4.80ctw Diamond Simulant Rhodium Over Silver Heart Hoop Earrings

Bella Luce® 4.80ctw Diamond Simulant Rhodium Over Silver Heart Hoop Earrings

Gioelli Sterling Silver and Gold-plated 8-inch Byzantine Bracelet

Gioelli Byzantine Bracelet

Red Glitter Heart BoxRed Heart Glitter Gift Box

 

EECOO Organizer Case,Portable Jewelry Box Storage Multi-Layer Organizer Case

EECOO Portable Jewelry Box Storage Multi-Layer Organizer Case 

Le Miel Ostrich Embossed 2-Compartment Dome Satchel with Strap- WalletLe Miel Ostrich Embossed 2-Compartment Dome Satchel with Strap & Wallet

Neiman Marcus Ellie Faux-Leather Crossbody bagEllie Faux-Leather Crossbody Bag

Coach Glitter Key Ring Card CaseCoach Glitter Key Ring Card Case

Michael Kors Barbara Marble Zip Around Coin Card CaseMichael Kors Barbara Marble Zip Around Coin Card Case

quilted-vest

St. John’s Bay Quilted Vest

Think pink for spring.

Fun Letter BoardFun Letter Board

I hear it’s the color on trend for 2019.

Tend To It Pink Multi Print Scarf

Tend To It Pink Multi Print Scarf

Dolce Vita Peigi Leopard Print Calf-Hair Sandals

Dolce Vita Peigi Leopard Print Calf-Hair Sandals

 

INDIGO RD. Kicky slip-on sneakerINDIGO RD. Kicky slip-on sneaker

rose-scented-bath-body

Rose Vanilla Pillow Mist
Mario Badescu Aloe, Herbs & Rosewater Facial Spray
Aerin Linen Rose Eau de Cologne Rollerball

Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick is a cosmetic classic.  I’ve tried more expensive brands, but for the color choice, phenomenal coverage, and staying power, Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick comes in at number one.

red-pink-nude-lipstick

 Champagne on Ice ||  Love That Red  || Luminous Pink
Love Charm

Sonia Kashuk™ Boat Clutch Etched Floral PinkSonia Kashuk™ Boat Clutch Etched Floral Pink

Pop a selection of nudes, reds, and pinks into a chic cosmetic bag, clip on the Love Charm, and pucker up, baby!

Hersheys Kisses Scented Bath Bomb - Raspberry Cream

Hersheys Kisses Scented Bath Bomb – Raspberry Cream

mouth fixed land line telephone

EPLAZA Red Sexy Lips Land Line Telephone 

Fun meets glam meets whimsy.

The Red Sexy Lips land line telephone says I just called to say I love you in all the right ways.

burl wood hexagon storage boxesBurl Wood Hexagon Storage Box

 

Joshua & Sons Men's Quartz Date Strap Watch Set

Joshua & Sons Men’s Quartz Date Strap Watch Set

 

mixology-bartender-kit

Mixology Bartender 10-Piece Bar Tool Set with Stylish Bamboo Stand

 

Solid chocolate video game controllerSolid Chocolate Video Game Controller

I like Valentine’s Day cards that become a forever keepsake.  

Waterlogue is an app that masterfully transforms your photos into watercolor works of art.

Take a photo of a person, place, pet, or thing of special meaning to your Valentine’s Day gift recipient.

Dunleith

Perhaps the place where you first met, had your first date, or got married.

Pontchartrain-HotelA shared favorite hotel or bed and breakfast.

Waterlogue-golf

The golf course of his and/or her dreams.

Pebble-Beach

Complete the keepsake theme with a stylish frame.

gold-molding-photo-frame

blue-wood-photo-frame

Photo Frames – T.J. Maxx

Collegiate 3 Piece Contour Headcovers

Collegiate 3 Piece Contour Headcovers

T. HARRIS Golf Accessories in a TinT. HARRIS Golf Accessories in a Tin

The Stylish Life: Golf

The Stylish Life: Golf  – Christian Chensvold

romantic-table-setting

Pinterest

Flowers, music, days and evenings of wine and roses, delectable bites, and sweets for the sweet set the tone, mood, and ambiance to romance.

pink-rose-white-carnation

Freebird – The Bouqs Co.

record-player

Etta James - At Last (Vinyl)Etta James – At Last (Vinyl)

La la Means I Love You: Definitive CollectionLa la Means I Love You: Definitive Collection

Nostalgic Wood Desktop Jukebox with Built-in Bluetooth and CD Player

Nostalgic Wood Desktop Jukebox with Built-in Bluetooth and CD Player

red-sauvignon blanc-rose-wine

Target

Date Night In: More than 120 Recipes to Nourish Your Relationship

Date Night In: More than 120 Recipes to Nourish Your Relationship 

Set of 4 Heart Cocottes

Martha Stewart Collection Set of 4 Heart Cocottes

dark chocolate puddingDark Chocolate Pudding – click on link for recipe

Lindor Valentine's Day Assorted Chocolate Truffles

Lindor Valentine’s Day Assorted Chocolate Truffles 

Thoughtful tokens of affection amplify our expressions of love.  I hope this  His and Her Valentine’s Day gift guide gives good gift giving inspiration.

Happy Valentine’s Day shopping!

Love your style!

Show & Tell