Thursday, February 28, 2019


Grace is 17 today!  Junior year has been a tough year so far in that the academic load is super intense, she has lots of college pressure building up which means SAT/ACT prep, and driving is on the horizon which she hates (our state it's 17!).    All of that being said, she's still (usually) a delight and I can barely consider that we only have her home for another year and a half.  Here is her annual update and things we love about her...

1.  Grace has had more social activity this year than she's ever had.  While it's still not a lot, it's definitely ticked up.  She had a really nice boyfriend, Jack, over the summer and while it didn't last long into the school year, it was a great first experience without a lot of drama or broken hearts.

2.  She's killing it in academics.  Last year she made high honors and is on track to do that again this year with straight A's at the end of the semester.  That's with AP and honors courses!  She clearly gets that from me (just joking- I actually failed math in high school).

3.  She works every Saturday at a local cafe and really enjoys it.  The tips aren't bad either.

4.  She is out of her mind excited about an upcoming trip to London during spring break.  She's going with a group of students who are presenting Henry the 5th to several audiences.  Guess what her part is?  Henry!  They have three Henry's and she's one of them.

5.  She's still dancing.  While ballet is her true love, this year she is taking a modern class and has been surprised at how much she has enjoyed it.

6.  Grace and Coco (our cat) are basically attached at the hip when Grace is home.  Coco follows Grace around wherever she goes and even perches on the toilet when Grace takes a shower (every single time).  It's a mutual adoration.

7.  She just won $1,000 in a contest at school.  She and five other students entered a national  environmental contest put on by Lexus and won!  Each students gets to take home a check for $1,000.  Isn't that crazy and awesome?

8.  She loves music, especially 80's music and she's making her way through a list of 80's movies she wants to see before she graduates.

9.   She still says her very favorite season is winter!  She's participated in ski club at school this year which has been fun for her to ski with friends.   Her day was off to a good start today because we woke up to a light dusting of snow.  A birthday gift from Mother Nature!

10.  She's just a great, all around girl.  She's compassionate, kind and respectful of others.  She works hard and is loyal to those she loves.  We couldn't love her more or be more proud of the woman she is becoming.  We feel so blessed that she's ours.

Monday, February 25, 2019

A New Painting

Back in January, when we were in New Orleans, we picked up a new piece of artwork for our house! As you know, we love to pick up special things on our travels and we especially love to support an artist who lives wherever we are visiting.

I knew that I was looking for a piece for our dining room as the one that we had on the wall was just a place holder (it found a much better spot in our foyer) until we could find the perfect something.  When I'm standing at the kitchen island, this wall is in my direct line of vision and I really wanted something that was fresh, beautiful and that I wouldn't get tired of looking at!  I knew as soon as I saw this painting that it would be perfect.  Bryce took a little more convincing as it is not what we would normally go for.  In fact, with the exception of our trip artwork, we don't have any other contemporary art.

This wall is also the home to my favorite bow sconces that I've carried around with me to several houses.  Years and years ago, my Mom found them for me in an antique store and immediately called me to come look at them.  They are European and therefore smaller than most boxes here in the US, and they are always a pain for electricians to install, but it's totally worth it.  It works out really well that their green is complimentary to the green in the painting.  It's also a total coincidence that the blue we painted on the inside of the china cabinet is a lovely match!  I think it was meant to be!

Sunday, February 24, 2019

Kansas City

From Tulsa we drove to Kansas City.  We arrived around dinner time and had our first, of four, meals of BBQ!  Bryce could eat BBQ for every single meal and be just fine.

The most time was spent visiting the museum for the Arabia Steamboat.  It sank in the muddy Missouri River but was brought up by a family looking to do some treasure hunting.  They found it and its cargo preserved in almost perfect condition.  The vast collection of goods was astounding!

After the Arabia, we wandered some more about the city, it was cold but fun!

And now we are down to three states to go!

Friday, February 22, 2019

Tulsa, Oklahoma

This past weekend we knocked two more states off of our list!  I had a meeting in Kansas City for a project I'm working on for The Flower Frog (more on that soon), and we decided to make a family weekend out of it.  We flew into Tulsa, Oklahoma and our short stay there exceeded every expectation!  While there we ate great food, toured around a beautiful art museum and discovered the most amazing park.

After a delicious breakfast, we walked around Downtown for a bit.  It was almost completely empty! Grace had unearthed a random and interesting site, The Center of the Universe, that we made our way to.  Here, if you stand in the center of the square, whatever you say is amplified and echoed back to you.

The Philbrook Museum was a great way to spend a couple of hours.  Not only do they have a wonderful collection of art, but it was nice to walk around their grounds as well.

After the museum, we made our way to Tulsa's newest park, The Gathering Place.  This massive park is unlike anything we've ever seen and the thought and planning that went in to making it is really astounding.  It's simply beautiful.  There are elaborate playgrounds, gathering spots to sit and chat check your phone, trails and art installations, to name just a few things.

Before we headed to Kansas City, we stopped at a delicious coffee shop where we quickly discovered we were not nearly cool enough to be there.  Fortunately, they served us coffee anyway! :)

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Valentine's Day

I'm a big believer that Valentine's Day doesn't need to have a sweeping, grand gesture in order to be an awesome day.  In fact, I prefer to give my family little love notes throughout the day.  It's become apparent that my form of love notes usually involves food, and most often, sweets!

For the morning, I made homemade heart pop tarts, which were very tasty.  The only downside was that I didn't give them enough time to cool down (our mornings don't have a lot of extra time packed in) and Grace burned her tongue!  Oops.

For our evening meal, we switched things up a bit and ate in front of the fire in the den.  My coffee table swivels and becomes a dining room table so it's very easy to use it as a dining table (originally it was intended for a small NYC apartment, isn't that so clever?).

My Mom joined us and we had heart pizzas and salad.  Simple but fun.

For dessert, we had a lemon tart decorated with raspberry hearts.

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Rose Marshmallows Dipped in Lavender Chocolate

As you may know, I LOVE using edible flowers in food and drinks, especially edible flowers that I've grown.  This past summer, I dried some rose petals to use and therefore, a couple of weeks ago, I made rose marshmallows dipped in lavender chocolate.  The recipe is from the book, Art of Edible Flowers by Rebecca Sullivan.  We all loved them!  In fact, they were mostly eaten plain and not even in hot chocolate. 

The rose hit the perfect note, not too much or too little, and the chocolate elevated the whole thing (make sure to use the best chocolate you can).  I did add them to my hot chocolate and I thought the faint taste of rose it imparted was perfect.  Next year, I will wait to make them around Valentine's Day as they would be darling wrapped up for little love gifts to friends or family!  Also, how pretty are they?

P.S.  I want to note that it did not call for using powdered sugar on them once they are cut up.  However, I went ahead and did this as I didn't want them to stick to each other.

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Time With Girls

This weekend, I flew down to Atlanta to have some girl time with Baby Club.  We are going strong at 20 years of laughs, tears, stories and, of course, babies!  We had two nights of uninterrupted time where we mostly sat around in our pajamas and caught up on life with each other.

I was fortunate enough that I also got to squeeze in girl time with Kathleen while in the Atl!  She and I shared a few meals and spent time at Scott's Antique Market looking for vintage garden/flower items I hope to be able to sell in The Flower Frog boutique once we get it up and running.  What a treat to spend time with dear friends for the weekend!

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Favorite Things #59

Last year, I saw these stick candles in Flower Magazine and loved them and the concept.  In fact, I went online and put some in a virtual cart, but I never pulled the trigger.  However, in a happy discovery, I recently went in a jewelry store with a friend and there they were!  While she discussed jewelry design options, I picked out what color I wanted so it was a win/win!

The Stick Candles are beeswax candles that are cast from actual branches and twigs and they are made in a variety of different colors.  I just love the look of them.  Ever since we moved here I've wanted to have a summer dinner down by the creek and now I keep imagining how pretty the table would be with these down the middle!

Monday, February 4, 2019

The Weekend

How was everyone's weekend?  Our house felt a little empty as Harris went on a youth group retreat with our church.  Grace and her best friend, Kathleen, spent time together Friday night where they also got their ears pierced for the second time!

We also celebrated our nephew, Brendan's, 14th birthday!  We got him this book that I hope he likes.  At first glance it looked like a picture book but it's actually just a ton of information about how things work.  Perfect for a voracious reader and information seeker like Brendan!

We did watch the Super Bowl but found it to be a snooze fest.  I did make cute cupcakes though!

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