Friday, February 23, 2018

Meeting Texas Bloggers and a giveaway winner!


I was happy to meet a group of Texas bloggers yesterday in Dallas. It was a nice bonus to visiting my son and his family.
  Left to right are:, Carol@, Laura@ Decor to Adore,, and

We enjoyed a delightful lunch at Bread Winners in North Park Mall in Dallas. The food was great but meeting bloggers you have known for years through blogging and some for the first time was so much fun.

 Laura@Decor To Adore and I have know each other for years but neither of us could remember how long ago it was or how we connected. She invited me way back in 2014 to do a guest post on her Friday blog series, "My Favorite Five." I decided to dig that post back up and share it today and my favorite five are still the same now in 2018.

I've known Carol@ Blue Sky at Home through tablescape bloghops the last two years and it was great to meet her in person.

Stacey @Poofing the Pillows and I have been friends for at least two or three years and we have so much in common. The time passed way too quickly and I could have talked for much longer.

Barbara@French Ethereal and Cindy@County Road 407 and I meet for the first time yesterday and I look forward to getting to know them better.

I learned so much from these ladies yesterday about blogging and loved getting real hugs from them instead of virtual ones. It was a rewarding day for me. Thank you, girls.

The weather was terrible yesterday and there were others that could not make it because of the weather. I was disappointed but hope there will be another opportunity to meet them. We missed you Jemma and Tanna.

And....much to my surprise Patti@Pandora's Box emailed me this morning that I won her giveaway of the MC tote! Needless to say, I am thrilled. I am having a great week, ladies! I sure do enjoy all the Traveling Tote Adventures of the Mackensie Child Traveling Totes. Read about how the Traveling Totes began here.

Thank you for this great giveaway!

Now, I am reposting "My Favorite Five" from four years ago. Have you ever thought about what your favorite things to do are?

"My Favorite Five"

1. Photography is a passion of mine, however, I am still a work in progress.  Since, I began blogging I have made thousands of pictures. Making family pictures is a large part of my photo cache. I love to record family vacations and photograph nearly all the food we eat, as well as what we do. People other than bloggers think I'm crazy.
    Since, we are all yearning for spring I immediately thought of this photo. It evokes such happiness for me. The french faux bois bench and blooming cherry tree cast it's spell on me in St. Rèmy, Provence. Other favorite photography pics are posted here.

2. Traveling: One of the thrills of my life has been the blessing to travel abroad the last few years. There were many pinch me, is this really me, moments. I don't have words to tell you the thrill I felt traveling through France, England and Italy.   The gondola ride in Venice ( pictured below) was exciting and beyond my expectations.  I think of the many beautiful and exciting sights and experiences we enjoyed on our wonderful trips all the time. Thank you dear husband for these beautiful memories. I could go on and on because traveling is quite addicting. You always want to see another place. I am hoping to organize my travel posts soon and do blog buttons to make viewing easier.

Here are links to a few travel posts:  Paris and Paris, Rome
Since, this post was written, my husband and I have traveled to the regions of Burgandy, Dordogne and Bordeaux, France. Also, we cruised along the Rhine River  through Germany, The Netherlands, France and Switzerland. We visited El Salvador this October, meeting our sponsored Compassion Child. You can read about that trip here. This spring we are scheduled to cruise the Danube River.  Every time I think of each trip I thank God for the opportunity and my husband for taking me to these wonderful places. We love to travel. I intended to blog about each destination but got behind. 

3.Tablescaping: My first blog post was a Thanksgiving tablescape which evoked the name of my blog~ Living With Thanksgiving. I love to "play in the dishes" as I've heard it called. Again, it is hard to pick a favorite. It would be fun to see which tablescape you would pick. Thinking spring, I will share this one, and the entire blog post can be viewed here.
Under my header in the navigation bar you can view tablescapes I've done over the years. Since this was written I have participated in a number of tablescape bloghops sponsored by Chloe Crabtree @Celebrate and

4. Gardening: I enjoy gardening and it has brought me great joy and satisfaction.  My garden is primarily a shade garden dictated by my location. I love all flowers but hydrangeas and camellias are high on my list. I enjoy being in a local garden club and was glad to have the opportunity to complete the master gardener course a few years back. This is my hydrangea garden below.
Under gardening in my navigation bar other gardening posts can be viewed.

5. Flower Arranging: I have so many vases I am running out of room to store them all.  Selecting just the right vase and arranging flowers is therapy for me. A recent post, Flower Arranging is Therapy is a roundup of a variety of flower arrangements I have done. It is a delight to cut flowers from your garden and fashion an arrangement to enjoy in your home. When you have a vision for something and it turns out well, it is very satisfying.  I get my love of flowers from my mother and remember fondly how every flower thrilled her. My hydrangea garden can be viewed here.

Do you see how each interest of mine plays on another? I love to grow flowers, then arrange them for centerpieces for tablescaping. Then, I enjoy preserving the memory with a photograph. Traveling is another passion and I never tire of making hundreds of pictures of each destination and every family outing. Therefore blogging is a large part of my life sharing my interests with those that share some of the same interests. Thank you Laura for inviting me to me part of Decor to Adore today. It was an honor.

I hope you enjoyed reminiscing with me today as well as seeing the great Texas girls I met yesterday. And, I am still amazed I won the Traveling Totes giveaway!
Happy Friday!

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Flower Arranging is Therapy

Do you adore flowers as much as I do? I am dreaming of spring and picking and arranging flowers. I have been in Texas visiting my son and the weather has been rather dreary so today I am bringing up some flower arrangements from the archives to bring some cheer. It is 37 degrees where my son lives and has rained the last five or six days. It is hard to believe that it is in the 80's at my home in Alabama! 

Don't these peonies grab your heart? I bought these at Trader Joe's last year.

These are the same peonies as above just a few days older, cut shorter and arranged in another container for a different look.

My daughter grew these gorgeous peonies.

These hydrangeas are from my garden. 

These are also from my garden.

The camellias are from my garden but the queen annes lace was bought from a florist. This is one of my favorite containers. It takes no skill to arrange a grouping of flowers and makes an easy statement anytime of the year with seasonal flowers.

Blue Nikko are my favorite hydrangea.

In July, the hydrangeas turn a beautiful green. Round arrangements are easy to do but it took a lot of flowers for this bowl.

Spring medley of flowers and different containers!

The beautiful blue cut work cloth that the flowers are sitting on is an apron that Laura from Decor to Adore made. I was the lucky winner of her giveaway several years ago.

Store bought roses in a MC vase I also won in a Traveling Totes giveaway. I just love this vase.

This is my newest vase and the 18 roses came from Sam's for only $19.99. They were so fresh and fun to arrange. I arranged them in three different containers just for practice. The second arrangement was in my last blog post, A Valentine Tea  using a rose medallion vase. The third arrangement will be in a later post. 

Think outside the box for containers. This container is a casserole dish and its caddy.
I am always on the lookout for unique containers for flower arranging. All arrangements in this post gave me pleasure to arrange. Flower arranging is definitely one of my passions.  What are some of your passions?

Have a wonderful week!

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

A Valentine Tea

A bouquet of beautiful pink roses inspired a photo shoot and turned into a Valentine tea party.

Who doesn't love a tea party? 
Sweets and savory items for an afternoon treat!

But it is the people you share a cup of tea with that matters. A time to sit down, relax from the world's pressures, forget all you have to do and focus on your companion.

Have a wonderful Valentine's Day!

Joining: Gardens Galore  Metamorphosis Monday   Show and Share  The Scoop  Celebrate and Decorate  Inspire Me Tuesday  Wow Us Wednesday  Tablescape Thursday  Share Your Style Party  Share Your Cup Full Plate Thursday
 Feathered Nest Friday  Dishing It & Digging It   Calypso in the Country Sunday's At Home


Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Espresso and Chocolate


Valentine's Day is just around the corner. I am a hopeless romantic and remember spending hours looking for the perfect Valentine card. I also have spent hours planning special Valentine tables over the years. Do you have a romantic evening planned for Valentine's Day?
 Join me today for a Romantic Blog Hop sponsored by Chloe Crabtree@Celebrate and Decorate. A host of bloggers are ready to share their romantic tables this week. Links are listed at the end of this post for your inspiration.

My love is like a red, red rose
That's newly sprung in June
My love is like the melody
That's sweetly played in tune.
As far art thou, my bonnie lass,
So deep in love am I:
And I will love thee still, my dear,
Til a 'the seas gang dry.
Til a' the seas gang dry, my dear,
And the rocks melt wi' the sun:
I will love thee still, my dear,
While the sands o' life shall run.
And fare thee weel, my only luve!
And fare thee weel awhile!
And I will come again, my luve,
Though it were ten thousand mile.
I thought you might enjoy this beautiful video of Robert Burn's poem sung by Karen Matheson. 

My husband and I love a romantic evening. Candlelight and a table by the fire fits us well.

This little picture of my husband when he was around 4 years old is quite special to me. Framed in this heart shaped frame it was placed by my plate at my bridesmaids luncheon. I still remember how touched I was. My mother's best friend hosted the luncheon in her home along with other friends and her daughter, Mary Alice was in our wedding. My husband, Mike, played with my friend, Mary Alice when they were small.
The crocheted table topper was made by my great grandmother on my father's side. She lived to be 100 years old. The napkin fold in an envelope shape gives a nod to opening a Valentine card and the idea was borrowed from Southern Lady magazine, January/February issue this year.

Who doesn't like candy for Valentine's and these Lindt strawberries and cream white chocolate truffles melt in your mouth! The heart dish was my daughter's in junior high. And... red roses always steal my heart!

The art deco chocolate/coffee set was a given to me by my mother-in-law. I used it in one of my favorite posts, here. I wish I could ask her more about it. 
What is your favorite candy?
Table sources:
Napkins- Waterford Table Linens/Home Goods
Plates-Mansard by Spode
Flatware- Buttercup by Gorham
Glasses - Pier 1
Chocolate/Coffee Set- Lenox
Tray -Target
Tablecloth- Vintage

A romantic table can be as varied as all our personalities. Set with love is the key. This is our 47th Valentine's Day as a married couple. If we go back to dating days, that began with our first date on Valentine's Day, 1968. 
Psalm 127:1  " Unless the Lord builds the house, the builders labor in vain."

Thanks for stopping by today and viewing my Romantic tablescape for two.
You don't want to miss visiting all the blogs listed below for other fabulous tablescapes.

Have a wonderful week!