Summer Scenes to Come

Summer scenes are coming into focus.

Memorial Day weekend kicks off the unofficial start of the summer season, and with that comes “we’ve been having fun all summer long” activities associated with fun in the sun times.

summer scenes

Shopping farmers markets and strolling American flag lined main streets for treats and treasures goes with the summertime territory.


Ceramic Berry Colander - Yellow Floral

 Ceramic Berry Colander – Yellow Floral

I’m sure I’d be amazed if I realized the amount of hours Dave the Builder and I spent together early morning and late afternoon porchin’.


Southern Living Magazine
Photography by Van Chaplin, Laurey W. Glenn, John O’Hagan

Perfect lighting scenario is the one nature supplies.


John Kraemer & Sons, Inc.

Summer offers pretty pastel flowers in pitchers, creamers, jars or even cans inspiration.


Victoria Magazine

In season blooms here today and gone tomorrow spark buzz and demand.




Linen Throw Pillow

Warm breezes in May remind me of a favorite summer scene set in a small North Louisiana town.


Country Living Magazine – Brent Darby Photography

Included in this forever memory is cross-stitch pillowcases, crisp cotton sheets fresh from the clothesline, a vintage chenille bedspread, and a bedside window raised just enough to allow the morning breeze to fill the room with the scent of African violets.


Summer will always be hot, delightful, and golden.


Cold drinks and cool creeks right this way.


Texan family members refer to any and all soft drinks as cold drinks.

Tennessean family members refer to any and all soft drinks as a col cola. Not cold cola or coca-cola, but a truncated version of the two.

It’s true what you’ve heard; most Southerners do in fact refer to any and all brands of carbonated drinks as Coke.

Classic Coca-Cola in bottle

Photography by Artem Beliaikin

Regardless of what you call it, Coke is summer in a glass, bottle or can.


Martha Stewart

Speaking of Martha Stewart- salute to 81 years young looking summer chic gorgeous on the cover of Sports Illustrated 2023 Swimsuit issue.


Thin patty grilled hamburgers and frosted mug root beers from Reed & Bell Drive-In was the summertime treat and the taste of my childhood.

We always parked and walked up to the counter window to place our order, and our mother would indulge my brother and me by letting us sit in the wooden school desks painted in primary colors of red, yellow, and blue situated under the shaded overhang.

Sipping on an arctic cold frosted root beer while waiting for our hamburgers to cook and listening to the hum of the fans overhead rated summer fantastic.

In our summer travels down the highways, interstates, farm-to-market, and backroads less traveled by, wonderment and nostalgia ride shotgun.

old-gas-pumps-highway (1)

Points of interest past and present fill mile after mile with sights appreciated, underrated, and outdated.

Beauty is in the eye and heart of the beholder, the mind and memories of the observer.


Summer’s big bang theory proves we’re all big kids at heart.


Photography by Zuza Gałczyńska on Unsplash

Hold on, summer fans. The ride is just beginning.


Mother’s Day Moments and Musings

Mother’s Day moments and musings bring joy to the heart, create cherished memories, and often are responsible for bringing a sentimental tear or two to the eye.


“A mother’s arms are made of tenderness
and children sleep soundly in them.”

—Victor Hugo


“Mother is the name for God in the lips and hearts of little children.”

—William Makepeace Thackeray


What I count as the greatest blessing of my life continues to amaze me, capture my heart, and bring much joy and happiness to each and every Mother’s Day.

Seems a piece of paper really is important in the grand scheme of a treasured things. This silhouette proves a precious and priceless keepsake.


Victoria Magazine

Flowers began arriving at the first of the week in deliveries for no other reason than I absolutely love fresh flowers from the floral department and local farmers market.


farmer's-market-fresh-flowers (1)


Flowers depicted through art bloom forever (or until your taste changes).


Gerardina Jacoba van de Sande Bakhuyzen roses

Gerardina Jacoba van de Sande Bakhuyzen

Home is where the Mother’s Day celebration brunch will be this year featuring a menu of light, sweet and easy house favorites.

brunchClassic Traditional Home

How lovely is this artichoke flower vase.

Inspired Mother’s Day celebration ideas show love and gratefulness in ways beyond retail.

Artichoke flower vase

Southern Lady Magazine

Mother’s Day celebration treats and sweets begin with the taste of home.

Creole Shrimp Caesar Salad with Cheesy Croutons

Creole Shrimp Caesar Salad with Cheesy Croutons

Chicken-Salad Cheesecake

Chicken-Salad Cheesecake

Rose-Lemon-Layer- Cake-slice

 Rose and Lemon Layer Cake

It is my honor to celebrate the mothers, grandmothers, new moms, moms-to-be, and women who are like a mother to so many as they enjoy their special day.

Happy Mother’s Day!


Merry Christmas To You!

Merry Christmas to you, my treasured friends.


Country Living Magazine – Photography by Rikki Snyder

This Christmas collection of pretty pictures, delightful treats, and Christmas at home is a visual to you, from me gift that hopefully fills the eye and the heart with the most wonderful time of the year sights of the season.



At Home in Arkansas – Photography by Rett Peek


Divinity with Cherries and Pecans



Country Home Magazine


House Beautiful – Photography by Peter Frank Edwards

Forest Beauty

Forest Beauty


Flower Magazine


Curly Girl Kitchen

All is calm, all is bright.




Raspberry Almond CakeRaspberry Almond Cake

The Toy Store Window by Timoléon Marie Lobrichon (1)

The light in a child’s eyes is all it takes to make
Christmas a magical time of the year.


May the beauty of the season be bountiful in the spaces and places of your holiday home.

With much love to one and all,


Taste of Thanksgiving Recipes

Taste of Thanksgiving recipes feed the hunger we crave and gives reason for the gathering season.

Julia Child quote tapestry


Gathering together to feast, family, and friend during the holidays or just because on a Monday in cozy spaces with good food (fancy schmancy or crackers and can cheese) is rooted in connection, love, and celebration of relationship.


Houzz – Tim Moss

Speaking from years of experience, the kitchen is about to be a hot spot of holiday activity.  Music is a must, quality kitchen tools and gadgets essential, organization the sous chef to friend, and the taste of Thanksgiving present and accounted for.


Houzz – Tim Moss

Holiday open houses at favorite antique shoppes result in treasured finds; among them platters O’Plenty perfect for plating birds baked, roasted, and fried.

vintage-new-thanksgiving-platters-1100-Barksdale (1)

Antique Shoppes at 1100 Barksdale

Louisianans do love to do delicious fried turkey when the weather turns cold and the good holiday times roll.

Deep-Fried Turkey Recipe

Country Living – Photography by Johnny Miller

Deep-Fried Turkey


1½ tbsp. kosher salt

1½ tbsp. smoked paprika

1½ tsp. garlic powder

1½ tsp. onion powder

1½ tsp. fresh ground pepper

1¼ tsp. cayenne pepper

1 (12- to 14-pound) whole fresh turkey

Peanut oil (about 3 gallons)


Stir together first 6 ingredients. Remove giblets and neck from turkey, and discard. Drain cavity well; pat entire turkey dry with paper towels.

Loosen and lift skin from turkey with fingers, without totally detaching skin; generously spread seasoning under skin. Carefully replace skin and secure with wooden picks, if desired.

Sprinkle and rub remaining seasoning inside cavity and on outside of turkey. Let turkey stand at room temperature while oil heats.

Meanwhile, pour oil into a deep propane turkey fryer 10 to 12 inches from top; heat to 350°F over a medium-low flame, according to manufacturer’s instructions (about 45 minutes).

Place turkey on fryer rod. Carefully and slowly lower turkey into hot oil with rod attachment.

Fry 35 to 45 minutes or until a meat thermometer inserted in thickest portion of thigh registers 165°F (about 3 minutes per pound plus an additional 5 minutes.  Keep oil temperature between 300°F and 325°F). Remove turkey from oil; drain and let stand 25 minutes before slicing.

Serves 10-12.

-Country Living


Alex Orenczuk TV

Louisiana pecans harvested from area farms characterize the taste of home.

Cinnamon Candied Pecans​​​​​​​​

1 Tbsp unsalted butter

¼ cup granulated sugar

1 cup pecans

½ teaspoon cinnamon


In a cast iron skillet over medium heat, melt together butter, cinnamon and granulated sugar until the sugar starts to caramelize.  Add pecans and stir to coat; stirring often to keep from burning.

Pour candied pecans onto parchment or wax paper allowing to cool.


Southern sweet potato casserole, candied sweet potatoes, and Dave the Builder’s requested favorite, sweet potato pie- Louisiana sweet potatoes are synonymous with Thanksgiving.

Homemade Sweet Potato Pie Recipe with Walnut Topping

Homemade Sweet Potato Pie Recipe with Walnut Topping

Taste of Thanksgiving Recipes

Candied Sweet Potatoes


3 large sweet potatoes, washed, peeled and sliced French fry style

1 stick butter, sliced

1 cup sugar

1 Tbsp water


Places prepared sweet potatoes in pot. Add sugar and butter slices. Add water and cover with lid. Cook on low about 40 minutes or until tender. Do not stir during cooking time.

Place candied sweet potatoes in casserole and serve.

-Cooking with Brenda Gantt

Asparagus With Crawfish Hollandaise

Asparagus With Crawfish Hollandaise


2 pounds green asparagus, trimmed

1 tablespoon canola oil

½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon ground black pepper

4  large egg yolks

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

½ teaspoon salt

⅛  teaspoon cayenne pepper

½  cup butter, melted

½ (16-ounce) package crawfish tails


Preheat oven to 350°.  Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil, and add asparagus.  Top with canola oil, salt, and pepper, and brush evenly with basting brush.  Bake until tender, 8 to 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, add water to a large saucepan, and bring to a simmer.  In a stainless steel bowl, add egg yolks, lemon juice, salt, and cayenne.  Hold bowl over simmering water making sure bottom of bowl does not touch water, and whisk vigorously until volume of egg mixture doubles.  Slowly whisk in melted butter until sauce is thick and combined.

Remove from heat, and stir in crawfish.  Serve immediately over asparagus.

-Louisiana Cookin’


Scenes from home.


Regional ingredients rich in taste of home traditions star in our taste of Thanksgiving non-traditional side dishes.


Wild Rice and Basmati Dressing with Sausage and Sage

Wild Rice and Basmati Dressing with Sausage and Sage

Holiday time is coming, and what better time to dazzle the gathered together than with one of these taste of Thanksgiving recipes.


Merry Christmas 2021


God grant you lightness in your step,

A smile on every face you meet,

Loved ones gathered at your hearth,

And at your door, good friends to greet

A holy hymn upon your lips,

A window candle burning bright

And may the Good Lord bless your heart

And come to dwell here Christmas night.

—Irish Christmas Blessing

From our house and hearts to yours, Dave the Builder and I wish you a very Merry Christmas 2021 filled with everlasting joy, peace, splendor, and love.




Christmas Season 2021

The pace for Christmas season 2021 is set to slow in order to savor the season, embrace the true meaning of it all, and cherish the memories old and new that rush my mind and heart.

Christmas season 2021 Pretty At The Holidays highlights a collection of gorgeous images featuring scenes of the season guaranteed to inspire and impress.


John Loecke & Jason Oliver Nixon – Photo Hector Manuel Sanchez
Styling by Kendra Surface – Southern Living Magazine

“Freshly cut Christmas trees smelling of stars and snow and pine resin—
inhale deeply and fill your soul with wintry night.”
—John J. Geddes

living-room-holidays-fire-interiors-Mark-Fox (1)

House & Garden – Photo by Mark Fox

“The rooms were very still while the pages were softly turned and the winter sunshine crept in to touch the bright heads and serious
faces with a Christmas greeting.”
—Louisa May Alcott


“Christmas is most truly Christmas when we celebrate it
by giving the light of love to those who need it most.”
—Ruth Carter Stapleton



“We count down the days, just to experience it nearly
exactly as we always have.
It is so comfortable, familiar and perfectly nostalgic
that, frankly, we have no desire to improve upon it at all.”
— Joanna Gaines


Kitchen Ghosts

“Christmas magic is silent.
You don’t hear it—you feel it.
You know it. You believe it.”
— Kevin Alan Milne


House Beautiful – Photo by Gordon Beall

“Some Christmas tree ornaments do more than glitter and glow, they represent a gift of love given a long time ago.”
—Tom Baker


“Christmas is a piece of one’s home that one carries in one’s heart.”
— Freya Stark


Victoria Magazine

“As long as we know in our hearts
what Christmas ought to be, Christmas is.”
– Eric Sevareid


Victoria Magazine

“Bless us Lord, this Christmas, with quietness of mind; Teach us to be patient and always to be kind.”
— Helen Steiner Rice

House & Garden

“Let us keep Christmas beautiful without a thought of greed.”
—Ann Garnett Schultz


Summer Adams

“Christmas is like candy; it slowly melts in your mouth sweetening every taste bud, making you wish it could last forever.”
— Richelle E. Goodrich

Retro Christmas Tree Cake

Retro Christmas Tree Cake

“May your hearth be warm, your holidays grand, and your heart
held gently in the good Lord’s hand.”
— Unknown

Carolyne Roehm candle fireplace mantle

Carolyne Roehm

“Christmas waves a magic wand over this world, and behold,
everything is softer and more beautiful.”
— Norman Vincent Peale


Festive anticipation is super setting in as Christmas week draws closer, and I fa la la la love it!

Flights carrying loved ones begin to arrive, Dave the Builder is patiently awaiting a pan of Fantasy Fudge brimming with chopped walnuts, and as much as I would love a visiting elf to grant me the pleasure of wrapping all the gifts for me, that’s one Christmas miracle I’m pretty sure is not going to happen.

Christmas season 2021

Holiday happenings, tasks, and undertakings can bring immense joy, however, the holiday hustle an bustle can be quite overwhelming at times.

Balance is a key component of design and decorating, life, and essential at this the most wonderful time of the year.

I’ve adopted a slow the pace, win the race attitude towards Christmas season 2021, seeing the beauty and the meaning of the season through a different lens.

Years of holiday decorating, open houses, and professional retail antiques and design business services brought joy, but I noticed by the second week of December I lost all interest in the holidays.  Can you say oversaturation?

For this reason, I keep my holiday social media postings light as well as my blogging in order to experience the joy rather than looking up and it being all over.

Remember this, my dear friends; the Christmas season is short at best. Treat yourself while treating others to the joy, the beauty, the goodies, and the glory of this beautiful season.

Merry Christmas, dear ones.