Just a Minute... In January

Just a simple reflection on January, I'm joining in with Just A Minute over at August Street.


Reading... Inkheart, Inkspell and Inkdeath by Cornelia Funke. I wanted to finish them before the movie was released and I just made it. We're going to see it this afternoon and I can't wait.

Making... I've been working on updating our adoption profile. I'm not quite finished yet, but I'm almost done.

Watching... Inkheart this afternoon, otherwise my favorite shows aren't on in January, so mostly I've been watching old movies... Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Brigadoon, Holiday Inn and The Shop Around the Corner to name a few

Listening... to a mix CD "Leaves are Falling" from Blaze

Loving... this breakfast nook I found on Better Homes & Gardens

and this papercut titled Autumn Kiss by Tina Tarnoff


Dreaming... of spring, tulips, crisp white linens, open windows, green grass, and reading in the backyard warmed by the sun with the pups playing, my bare toes being tickled by the grass

Planning... to finish all of our bathrooms before summer. Need to touch up paint on the ceiling in the guest bathroom, finish walls in the master bathroom, and we're about half done with adding a full bathroom to the basement (sheetrock is up, bathtub is in, everything is purchased except for tile)

Baking... the first Wednesday in February is my treat day at work, so I'll spend this afternoon baking cookies and planning a few cakes.

Want to join in? Visit Jenaveve over at August Street

Farewell Domino

D
omino's last issue will be released this March, April will be a disappointing month for many. It is joining several other home decor magazines that shuttered their doors in 2008: Meredith's Country Home, Time Inc.'s Cottage Living, Hearst's O at Home, Martha Stewart Living Omnipedia's BluePrint and Conde Nast's House & Garden. The website will be shuttered as well, so I'll have to go save anything I had marked as a favorite before it's gone for good. Which magazine is next?


Routines with Kids: Chore Charts Update

I
t's important that children understand the importance of helping with housework and taking pride in a job well done. I've discussed this before during September Shapeup, and since then chore charts brings more people to my site than anything else. So I thought I'd update you on a few of the things I've found since then.

I found a great site, DLTK, which will dynamically create a chore chart for you to print out. You can choose between black and white, which your child can color in, or color. If you laminate it you can use a dry erase marker to mark items off and wipe clean each week, or you can just reprint or create a new one each week. If you have older kids you can choose no image, or add your own.

Exmples of black/white for your child to color, and full color chore charts.


See the original chore charts post
See other Kid posts
See other Routines with Kids posts

If you'd like more of a vintage feel, help yourself to one of these images or search google for vintage chores.

-OR-

The Gentle Art of Domesticity - Beautiful Books

I
absolutely love Jane Brockett's blog, long before I have flowers blooming she's sharing gorgeous tulips and flowers from her garden. It gives me a bit of spring while I'm still waiting for it here in North Dakota. So given my Spring post earlier this week, I'm sure you can see why I love all the tulips she shares. Yellow tulips are my favorite.


Her book The Gentle Art of Domesticity: Stitching, Baking, Nature, Art & the Comforts of Home is a bright, colorful, beautiful book to peruse. I could spend hours reading, baking and analyzing every little detail.



The organization is quite interesting, there is no real index, just a bare wisp of an index at the end pointing you to the recipes and a few of her projects. Really this book isn't really a "resource book", it's more of a rainy day companion... and sunny days, and snowy days, and windy days... you get the point. The chapters are broken up in an interesting manner titled Inspiration, Color, Texture, Patterns, Practical, Style, Comfort, Luxury, Sharing, Sharing, Nature, Travel... Looking for her Rock Buns recipe? You'll find it under Comfort.  Want to force Hyacinths in the Winter?  Look under Practical.


Jane is also known for her fairy buns and the brilliant fun icing colors that she manages to achieve. Fairy buns, isn't that a much more fanciful name than cupcakes?


And last, but by no means least, I had to share a pic of her tulips! Every spring while I'm still waiting for my snow to melt, I indulge in a little spring vicariously through her blog. I'm always grateful for the glimpses of bits of green with gorgeous crowns of pinks, reds and yellows.


Spring, Spring, Spring

I
found myself humming "Spring, Spring, Spring" from "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers" most of the morning. Looking out at the mounds of snow and knowing they will be there for at least 2 maybe almost 3 more months has me yearning for spring. Lighter fabrics, pretty flowers, fresh air from the windows left open... So I found myself watching "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers this afternoon while wishing for spring.

There's still a month before I start pulling out the spring linens and giving them a good wash and start swapping out the linen closet. However, I couldn't resist sprucing up the linen closet this weekend, taking stock of our towels, sheets and supplies. So while I'm dreaming of spring...


Linens drying in the sun from Country Living


Tulips from Country Living


Rosemary herb garden from Country Living


A magnolia from Southern Living, because I'm a southern girl at heart

Delphinium
Delphinium from my yard last year

Monday Musings {38} - High Fidelity

Monday Musings Image with Lady

"What came first, the music or the misery? People worry about kids playing with guns, or watching violent videos, that some sort of culture of violence will take them over. Nobody worries about kids listening to thousands, literally thousands of songs about heartbreak, rejection, pain, misery and loss. Did I listen to pop music because I was miserable? Or was I miserable because I listened to pop music?"
-John Cusack as Rob in "High Fidelity"

Happy Birthday and Blogiversary Kim!

Kim over at Forever Daisies is celebrating her birthday and her blogiversary today. Swing by and wish her a Happy Birthday and Congratulations!

Vintage Birthday Party

The White House Blog

D
id you know the White House has a blog? I know this isn't the typical thing you will find on my blog, but I thought I should share this. I went looking for a transcipt of the inaugural address this evening when I got home and discovered that as of noon today the White House has a blog. I was pleased to see it, I think any open communication between the government and the people is a good thing. Now they just need to allow comments, although knowing spammers that might not be the best idea. Perhaps an open forum once in a while allowing two-way communication would be good.

What do you think of this development?

Apples for Jam - Beautiful Books

M
ondays always feel a little blah in the winter. Everything seems gray and cold, not at all inviting. After a weekend of cuddling in bed, playing with puppies, watching movies, and cozying up with cocoa, I'd love to make it last just a wee bit longer.

I thought I'd share a few of the books that I've been cozying up with recently each week. Now that the Christmas decorations are put away and the long wait until spring has begun, I like to distract myself from the temperatures with pretty pictures and bright colors. The beautiful photography and vivid colors in my recent reads are just the thing for dreaming of spring.

The first book I've been coveting for a little over a year, since I first saw a mention of it in Posie Gets Cozy. I picked it up this November when I stumbled across it in a bookstore and finally got a chance to peek through it firsthand. I couldn't bear to put it down, so it came home with me. Apples for Jam: A Colorful Cookbook has a very apropos subtitle, as it's arranged by color. It is a gorgeous cookbook full of lovely personal anecdotes by the author. I don't keep it with the other cookbooks, even though at it's heart that's what it is. Instead I keep it in my "Peruse Pile". My pile of pretty books that I love to linger over with a cup of coffee.



I wish I had had the courage to order this book on Alicia's recommendation alone a year ago, but I'm glad I have it now. I tend to want to see a picture of the final outcome before I'll make a recipe, this cookbook more than delivers. There isn't a photo of every recipe, but the photos it provides are so enticing!

Unusually organized it provides a feast for the eyes
Apples For Jam Red Contents

Each chapter starts with a memory
Apples For Jam Green

Apples For Jam Brocolli Soup

And personal photos are also interspersed within
Apples For Jam


Tessa Kiros has written a few other cookbooks, I also have Falling Cloudberries which will be shown soon.


Monday Musings {37} - Hepburn

Monday Musings Image with Lady

"For beautiful eyes, look for the good in others; for beautiful lips, speak only words of kindness; and for poise, walk with the knowledge that you are never alone."
-Audrey Hepburn

 via

National Delurking Day

D
id you know it's National Delurking Day? Basically we all know more people are reading our blogs than we ever have comments for, so today is the day everyone says hi. I have anonymous commenting turned on and turned off comment moderation for today. Please feel free to say hi, and if you have a blog make sure you leave a link so I can come visit!


Care to unmask and say hi?
See the Sweet Thoughts tag up there by the title,
go ahead and give it a click!

Monday Musings {36} - Davis

Monday Musings Image with Lady

"Vegetables are a must on a diet. I suggest carrot cake, zucchini bread, and pumpkin pie."
-Jim Davis

Casual Decor - Cocktail Party Basics

W
e looked at more formal party decor yesterday, so today let's cover the casual parties.

I'm going to dress up the same basic white plate, white tablecloth combo with different accessories for each party. While Mojitos are generally served in a highball glass and pomegranate champagne in a champagne glass, you can swap those out for general cocktail (martini) glasses just fine.

Fiesta

Placecard Frame $1.19 each at The Knot
Maracas $37.74 for 24 from PartyPro.com
Sarape $10 for 30x60 from Artesanias Mickey
Margarita Glasses $19.99 for 6 at Amazon
Square White Salad Plates $11.99 for 4 at Amazon
Classic White Table Cloth $22 - $40 for 1 at Crate and Barrel

Caribbean

Placecard Frame $1.19 each at The Knot
Stripe Turquoise Tablecloth $37 at Amazon
Fruit Centerpiece $53 at Edible Arrangements
Cocktail Umbrellas $7.95 for 144 at The Knot
Highball Glasses $16.99 for 12 at Amazon
Square White Salad Plates $11.99 for 4 at Amazon
Classic White Table Cloth $22 - $40 for 1 at Crate and Barrel

GirlsNight

Placecard Frame $1.19 each at The Knot
Chocolate Fountain $44.99 at Chocolate Fountain Shoppe
Pink Tablecloth $71 at 2 Jane
Leaf Wine Charms $15 for 6 by Tracy Revell
Champagne Flute $19.99 for 6 at Amazon
Square White Salad Plates $11.99 for 4 at Amazon
Classic White Table Cloth $22 - $40 for 1 at Crate and Barrel

Friday I'm in Love {12}

I
t's been a while since I've done a new Friday feature. There are lots of bits that I've been adoring, just haven't shared them.
Favorite new site find is Polyvore via Holly at Decor8, seriously addicting!:

Favorite new blog finds: