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Thursday, September 30, 2010

Dining Room Dilema

I need to go out and get paint samples today because this weekend we paint the dining room.
The previous owners painted it the color of mustard mixed with ketchup. It's about as appetizing to me as a left over McDonald's hamburger. Sorry that sounds a little harsh, but it really is that bad.

At first I thought I wanted a turquoise dining room...but this room doesn't get much light and really will be used as an evening room so that throws things off a little bit. All the photos I see on line are taken in the day time so aren't an accurate window for inspiration. They all look bright and fresh. When when we eat in there it isn't going to be bright at all...so the colors are going to look different. I can't really rely on photos. I am on my own here.

I thought about going around to all my favorite restaurants to see what colors they painted their walls. I think that would be the BEST way to search for dining room inspiration, don't you? But really, who has the time for that? I, do not.

We don't really want red or orange or brown...they just wouldn't work in our house or for us. The present shade has turned us off from yellows. Purple is definitely out. So that leaves us with blue and green. Hmm. Turquoise? Ah! We are back to Turquoise.

It will be interesting to see what we come up with.

What color do you like in a dining room?

Found this photo on House Beautiful when searching for inspiration and I know I don't want to paint our dining room brown and we are way more traditional than this---
BUT I think it's so fun!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Indian Summer Photo Shoot!

This past weekend we celebrated my Mom's birthday by having a photo shoot at the beach.
I have to say that in my mind we were all going to be wearing khaki's and white shirts---but after much deliberation and many phone conversations to coordinate I think the photo came out even better than the usual white and khaki deal. We wanted it to be easy. We could have gone out and bought crisp white shirts and JCrew summer sale pants, but we didn't. We showed up with our own clothes which made us feel comfortable in varying shades of cool hues.

What is most important is the fun that came with taking the picture. No fancy photographer. Just us trying to figure out how to use a fancy camera. We broke the rules by walking around in a protected dune area but it was worth it!

We could have spent a few hundred dollars to hire a professional, be late to the appointment and crabby about not matching outfits---- But instead, we just went with it! And and I think our pictures came out better than we could have planned. I'm so happy to have many lovely photos to frame of my family....and all from keeping it simple.

I think my mom was pretty happy too.

Happy Birthday Mom! We love spending time with you!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Friday, September 17, 2010

My fantastic find: the story of a sweater coat.

Why I bother perusing the halls, walls, and creative troves at Anthropologie, I haven't the foggiest. I usually leave feeling frustrated because if I have a bag in hand it means I spent my clothing budget for the next three months, I and if I don't have a bag in hand---then I don't have a bag in hand!!!!!

I will admit however that while I don't often get to indulge, I am often inspired and my eye is opened to an idea---fashion or otherwise, that I may have overlooked before.

Case in point, the grand looking sweater coat you see below. It's dandy, divine, and $168. Ouch.
If I had bought it the usual "I spent too much" knot in my stomach would have surely ensued as well as a long discussion about spending and stewardship with my husband.

Then there came humble Old Navy number you see below. While Old Navy doesn't tend to have the best quality, lets face it despite their prices Anthro doesn't have the best quality either. And while it is lacking that certain jena se qua the Anthro sweater coat has (more specifically: the darling buttons, exciting pleats, and embroidered embellishment) it would look great with boots and leggings and get me through Pennsylvania's crisp but not cold fall.

Oh how I loved that moment I had with that Anthropologie sweater coat...blithely sipping hot apple cider while reading a paper back at an outdoor cafe.

It was but a fleeting moment however, and we know that even good sweaters do not last forever.

Oh humble sweater I think you shall be mine! It's time humility gets a bit more glory anyway.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Autumn Heirlooms

I had told my husband that I was not going to put up fall decorations until the official first day of fall, September 22. I don't want to say good bye to summer. What about beach trips? Sunny afternoons? Fresh summer fruit? Ahhh. All good things must come to an end.

But, don't other good things have a beginning? Yes they do.

I couldn't resist stopping off at our local nursery today when I noticed their pumpkins were out. While they had all the wonderful varieties that I usually chose as a child (perfectly orange, perfectly mid-sized, and perfectly round), my eyes were drawn to a carnival of fall colors.

Enter: Heirloom Pumpkins.

Why have I never noticed them before!?!? Their shades of green, grey, coral, and orange! Stripes, veins, curves and bumps! Lovely imperfection, come to me!!

Since we bought our first house this past June, I have been noticing a lot of things that I never used to notice. Like how quickly the bathroom floor gets dirty, and that you need to be careful when going up they stairs carrying heavy items---you might dent the wall, and you just had it painted and what if the color match you put over the spackle doesn't match!? As a kid I had the attitude of "Hey, who cares if my roller skates scratch the brand new floors...mom will take care of it just like she takes care of everything!" Now, my floors are so clean you could lick them---but I digress.

I was marveling over the wonderful discovery of new (to me) pumpkins as pumpkins are one of my favorite things about fall. I found one that caught my fancy. A lovely bright one in a hue which summoned the deepest orange hue of a sunset. It had the perfect curves, a few dents, some intriguing veins. She was the perfect one to put in our front yard. She would sit in that awkward landscaping void between the evergreen shrub and the Rhododendron. She was huge! She was...to heavy to lift. Now I have been going to a body pump class for almost a year now, so if she is to heavy to lift, at 69 cents a pound...I though her too pricey for me. I guess I could have asked the farm stand people how much they thought that orange, veiny, lumpy, bright, beautiful pumpkin over there cost. But beauty is in the eye of the beholder and I was getting hungry so I got in my car and drove home with a mum on my passenger seat where that pumpkin should have been.

Now lest you think I am going on and on like a nut without a reason, I have posted photos of what I learned about these pumpkin varietiesso you too can know the names of all these fun pumpkins. Now when I go back to that farm stand I'll know to ask "How much do you think that Rouge vif d'Etempes over there costs". Unfortunately I am reeeeally going to need to work on my french before I try that one out.

If you'd like to find out the uses (besides decorating, you know cooking, backing and such) check out this beautiful and informative slide show at the daily green.

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