Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Life Styles of Southern California, book giveaway!

Just in time for those single digit temps {or an occasional dip into the 50s if you're at the beach} a give away with which you can curl up and will have you California dreamin' on such a winter's day. Manhattan Beach, local AIA architect, Grant Kirkpatrick takes you through some of his most beautifully designed, Southern California homes. The homes run the gamut from elegant and modern to relaxed family beach living. KAA Design Group’s first monograph also celebrates the individual stories behind the designer-client relationship through eleven of its architecturally lauded personal residences. Follow a family on their life-changing voyage halfway across the world; explore the home of an entrepreneur who, at least metaphorically, keeps watch over the Santa Monica Bay; or see how the renovation of a residence with a rich history awakened the amateur archaeologist in its owner. Illustrated with breathtaking photography, the stories reveal how the lives of these individuals and families are elevated by homes that reflect and shape their lifestyles. I'd say this would make a great gift, but my guess is that whomever wins this, will want to keep it for themselves. And as always, I like to keep this simple. All you have to do, is leave a comment on this post {tweet about it and I'll enter you twice.} Make sure you have an email address attached to your comment {no, seriously, there are people who leave anonymous comments with no contact info.} The giveaway begins, Wednesday, 12|01|10 and will run through the end of Wednesday, 12|08|10.

Monday, November 29, 2010

After a full weekend of Turkey, it's just little Hamish.

  1. Love a good sartorial based magazine = Fantastic Man
  2. Love a good, washed out Juergen Teller shoot = Hamish Bowles looking his usual dapperly dapper self.
  3. Love a guy who dresses the way he lives = again, H.B.

Friday, November 26, 2010

peace out

It's just about being thankful. Pretty simple. A holiday weekend about the gravy of life. No big. xoxo *M

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

hop on ye ole gravy train

Note to my friends with younger children:: this 'sMother' thing you're doing ? Will come back to emotionally maim you + bite you in ass when they get older. For the past two days, the girls have been home for the holiday. After 9 and 12 years of life, they're completely capable of getting themselves a glass of water, something to eat , finding a lost headband...ENTERTAINING themselves. You would think. ink But in the early days, I was so good at being at their beck and call, they truly do not think they are capable of anything - or maybe don't want to be (what sane person would turn down their own personal, lady in waiting ) . So, this means that every time I try and sit down at the computer, take a business call or do anything that might possibly NOT include taking care of, or entertaining them... I hear the baleful caw of the baby bird at the bottom of the stairs , 'mmmMMMAAAAWWM'? autumn Thus I'm getting very little done. What I don't sound thankful? Thankful that every day I wake up knowing that I have two beautiful girls who are healthy, strong, considerate, creative, loving and good thinkers? I am. More than you can imagine. This mothering thing, was truly a gift I probably didn't deserve on a lot of levels, and one that I never take for granted. Ever. Sure I get irritated fromtime to time ( and, you would too if someone asked you where the butter was....um, did you look in the fridge? no, can you? ) but I know that my time is very limited with them. Before I know it, they'll want little to do with me and it will be I who starts calling and bugging them. I have a lot to be thankful for. So, Happy Turkey Lurkey day. It's really all about this gratitude thing, this gravy of life. I found these lovely little thanksgiving Thank Set over at my friend Audrey's blog, parcel post. They're hand created by the aptly named....Simple Song. I think these, or your own version of these, would be a great bonus to the holiday table this year......
write down your thanks and hang it from the chandeliers. xo

This week on the Skirted Round Table:: Digital Magazines + a One King's Lane Giveaway!

This week join the three of us as we chat about the new wave of digital magazines. Are they simply a way to express one's self or are they a smart business plan? How will we remember to pick them back up again if they're not sitting on our tables, or on the news stand ( *hint* there's a great idea in there for someone ) Among the publications we talked about are: Lonny, Rue, Nesting Newbies, High Gloss (launching 2011), Anthology, Sweet Paul, Ivy & Piper, Covet Garden, Array, Pure Green Living, Matchbook Magazine (launching 2011), Pigtown*Design and ::Surroundings::.
and that's not all!
We're very excited that One King's Lane has offered a $200 Shopping Spree on their site to one of our listeners!!! All you have to do is visit their website (registration is free if you're not already registered) and poke around and come back here and let us know in the comments what you would buy if you win the Shopping Spree! Very simple. One lucky person will be drawn from all the comments.
Come by and listen, or never miss an episode by subscribing (for free!) on iTunes. The Skirted Round Table.

Monday, November 22, 2010

let's play dollhouse!

I played with dollhouses, way longer than most kids and even now, would love to have a miniature house built of a favorite home that I've owned ( ok, I realize this is getting close to saying that I'm going to start collecting those realistic dolls sold on HSN but I swear it wouldn't be that way ) There's something so calming and cathartic to me about creating little spaces and environments.

Digital Dollhouse has an online virtual dollhouse, that's about the most addicting, no sense of time when playing - game.  I'm honored to have been invited to judge their current contest :: Virtually design either a Victorian or Beach, Bed and Breakfast with a sprawling garden,  using the interactive site. Which, I just found, is also in the form of an Iphone app.


Meaning I'll be abandoning getting Ninja all over fruit for creating cool little rooms, while sitting in the carpool line - not driving - sitting.

Here are the deets. 
And here is what you'll win:

This herb pot is a super cool idea or anyone living in a yardless abode or during the winter months. Fresh herbs! year round in a planter that looks like a piece of sculpture.

Lucky Winner WINS a REAL HERB POT from Greener Grass Design

Design a Full House WIN a REAL HERB POT & 500ddcoins

Design a Single Room VICTORIAN WIN 500ddcoins

Design a Single Room BEACHWIN 500ddcoins

DDH Community Winner Single Room WIN 500ddcoins

Add FLORAL B & B in the title for Full House entries

Post Room entries in FLORAL BED N BREAKFAST Gallery

Come on over and join the fun. Can't wait to see your work. Contest ends November 26, 2010 at 5pm PST

music monday

listening to the while I work these days. Happy Monday and short work week!

hundreds :: I love my harbour

hundreds :: Happy Virus

miike snow :: animal

Friday, November 19, 2010

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

I think I'd like some leopard stairs. And the black lacquer is a given.

lacquered cabinetry that's the other kind of green.

While over at my friend's house the other day { Brunswick Strew friend } we sat in her kitchen discussing the current color of her kitchen cabinetry {something that looked like, Benjamin Moore's 'Basil Green' } it's a great color and had us both talking about our love for a lacquered green kitchen cabinetry... a la Miles Redd I told her I'd pull some shots and post them here for her to see. These are for you, W.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


love the color palette +  light in this room. Take note as it seems we'll be seeing a lot more of this to come. From the Norwegian blog, Mali Mo


Dalton Ghetti creates miniature masterpieces on the tips of pencil.

etsy for the holidays....

I am not one of those people who has almost completed her Christmas shopping, addressed her Holiday cards, ordered the candy cane colored baker's twine to tie around brown paper packages,  wired together the fresh Magnolia branch garland nor made all of my homemade, perfectly packaged flavored liquors....  or any of that, "A personality", Martha nonsense. No, I'm still she who sends Valentine's Day cards more years than not because I can't get my act together before the New Year. 

But let's just, for a moment, pretend that I am someone who spends her days calmly, quietly humming carols in November, as I find the perfect gift for everyone on my list including the mailman, the teachers, the sackers at von's etc. Yes because I'm that together during the holidays. Not a hair out of place. fa, la, la, la

 Of course, etsy would be my first stop for finding unique gifts made with love and heaps of creative juju. A few of my recent finds............

FauxKiss out of Portland, Oregon creates these super affordable prints on vintage dictionary pages.The botanical prints she does are beautiful as are the more serious animal prints. 

At $12.00 a piece, the 8x7 prints are the perfect thing to buy in a set of 3 or more.

Who doesn't need a good looking container bag? This line by Brin and Nohl is made out of burlap coffee bags. Burlap + a Big Graphic, Cross Motif  = big ups. Cool enough that even a guy would want one or a few of these.  

Speaking of cool, they also make these awesome, military blanket pillows.  These eco-chic finds are all under fitty. Which, really, is so worth it.

Who can take a nothing day, and suddenly make it all seem worthwhile?

This bag can, that's who. No, I know, it's a huge statement. Giant Green leather satchel in your face kinda statement. But it's so great.  

And look, what's on the inside....

 love is all around, no need to waste it, stick a little happiness into the details and you've got a winner all the way around { it comes in red too. } colorful leather bags by The Leather Shop  $120.00

I like all of the pomp that surrounds a formal dinner. And what better time than the holidays to give your friends a reason to get dressed in their finery and sit down at a beautiful table with good food and wine. 

these place cards by Timeless Paper are such a clever and unique way to give your table an added something.

Ready for on of the best ten dollar gifts out there? A frequent contributor to the Blog Out Loud swag bags is Margaret @ Paper Pastries.  Her line of stationary related items rocks. simply put. She has a great sense of humor and it shows in these pencil sets {which all come adorably packaged in a muslin bag} 

The pencil set for the know it all in your life:

The chef in your life:

 And the fourth grade California student who found social studies 'soooo boring' this year that she couldn't retain one damn thing about her fine state,  and then went and blamed her mom and her teachers for the bad grades she received. #notmychildmychildisagiftedgenius.

also, you have to get the brass double barrel pencil sharpener to go with. If only because it's cool looking.

and wait, the candy cane baker's twine I mentioned before? she sells it.


Only she calls it Divine Twine and has it in a million different colors { or 6 or 7} Visit her site, she has great handmade cards and all things clever and papery. Paper Pastries

 I love these because of their simple beauty. What dog owner wouldn't want one of these made to order, sculptures from kgrandey. You can just feel the quiet love the artist has for animals. Thanks for making my heart sing. 

these tiny rabbits under a bell jar, slay me with their cuteness {each less than an inch tall}

Monday, November 15, 2010

a little taste of the South at the beach

Sunday afternoon, our good friends included us in  a birthday partay celebrating the guest of honor/hostess' Southern roots. This couple ( two of the most creative people I know) always throw a visually thoughtful and beautiful shin dig, rife with super interesting people (not patting myself on the back. swear) .

Yesterday's fiesta was no different. On the stove top, after 2 straight days of cooking, was the hostess' mother's, Georgia family recipe for an Autumn favorite, "New Brunswick Stew". 

And just to keep it all in the down South way, this savory stew was teamed up with delicacies like cornbread, pepper jam, pimento cheese (home made as you cannot find such a thing in the markets here), brown-sugar pecan and strawberry-rhubarb pie and beer served up in mason jars (which she has an ample stock of since her mother sends her all kinds of pickled veggies - they like to serve these in a Bloody Mary)

If you're unfamiliar with New Brunswick stew, as many a Northerner and those residing West of the Rockies seem to be, it's a hearty tomato. meat veggies based stew that originally included local game such as squirrel and rabbit but now a days contains chicken and sometimes beef.  Brunswick stew was named for Brunswick County, Virginia. Apparently, in 1828, Dr. Creed Haskins of the Virginia state legislature asked for a special squirrel stew from "Uncle Jimmy" Matthews to feed people attending a political rally. Actually there is no one recipe for New Brunswick stew, and the contents seem to vary by region.

Of course I knew not to ask the hostess for her family recipe so I'll just give you the one that I make. It's really a great Sunday afternoon with friends kind of meal. Of course if I were Eddie Ross, I'd be serving this up in pewter bowls that I picked up at a New Hampshire Goodwill for $5.00.As most recipes makes it in huge vats, you'll have a lot left over to send home  with your guests in Mason jars.

2 quarts and 1 1/2 cups cold water
1 cup all purpose flower
5 pounds stew beef
1 1/2 pounds of ground beef
1 (3-pound)  chicken, cut
2 TB salt
pink of crushed red pepper
3 large onions, coarsley chopped
2 stalks  celery chopped
4 30-ounce cans of whole tomatoes, crushed
2 bay leaves
4 9-ounce packages frozen lima beans
2 cups of diced potatoes
4 cans of creamed corn
half a cup of bbq sauce
hot sauce to taste
1 stick of butter
juice of one lemon
TB vinegar
1 TB of sugar
Worcestershire sauce to taste

all spices are to taste. 

Cook beef in a large covered pot with 2 quarts of water, salt and red pepper. Simmer about 2 hours, until very tender. In another large pot, place the chicken and enough water to cover chicken and bring to a boil. Cook chicken until meat falls off the bone, approximately 45 minutes. Drain the chicken. Remove the skin and bones and shred meat (you can also run it through the food processor). 

Remove beef, cut into small chunks. add onions, celery, tomatoes and bay leaves to beef stock and simmer 1 hour.  Brown ground beef with Olive Oil. Cook Lima beans and potatoes separately. Add beef, chicken, beans and potatoes and corn to beef stock. Make thickening in a bowl add 1 1/2 cups of water to flour and beat well until there are no lumps. Add to hot moisture slowly stirring well so it does not lump. Add butter, vinegar,  lemon juice, sugar, bbq sauce, hot sauce and season with Worcestershire sauce to taste. Put on low heat, covered for up two days.

You can pour this over rice or add Corn Bread dumplings on top. Add Mason jar of beer and eat.

the B to the Log

it's all about me, really.

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