Holidays, Pinterest Challenge, Recipes

A Rosy Valentine’s Cake to Bake

Happy Almost Valentine’s Day, dear friends! If you are coming over for the first time from Carol’s place ~ Bluesky at Home, welcome to my blog, French Ethereal! Our host Cindy from County Road 407 has graciously allowed me to jump in last minute. I had Covid over the past couple of weeks and so happily I feel great now (those vaccines DO work!). I was excited when Cindy gave us our assignment this month to create a simple Valentine’s Day recipe.

Here is mine…

Yes, I used one box cake recipe and it turned out moist, chocolatey and delicious!!

I do make a lot of scratch cakes but this time it was all about making it easy! When we get so busy with life, a simple box cake is the easy way out, my friends.

Just like the box cakes my mother used to bake during my childhood, and I’d sometimes make for my own family, these are basically NO FAIL Betty Crocker and others are tried and true.

Easy peasy, as Cindy herself likes to say!

This baking center is inside our kitchen island. Ever since our first house, I’ve loved putting all of our baking things in one area! So convenient. How about you? Where do you store your baking goodies? What do you put in your kitchen island?

Which cake pan to use?

I have 8″ heart-shaped pans, which I have used in the past, and I have smaller heart-shaped tart tins, too. However, I thought it would be beautiful and fun to our rose bundt pan.

All of the years I was in the Victorian Tea Society in Riverside County, California, I had a couple of friends who had rose pans and their cakes looked so chic when dessert was served.

I was soooo excited when I found one a couple of years ago! It really turns out a stunning cake.

Just spray baking spray all over the inside, add some flour inside and tap it all around and into the grooves of the pan. Dump the excess flour out, bake at the prescribed temperature, and after 42 minutes baking in the oven, this cake was done!

And that’s all there is to this Rosy Valentine’s Cake! If you are starting here with me, we circle back up to Cindy at County Road 407. I know you will love Cindy’s Valentine’s Day extremely cute cherry pastry envelopes recipe idea! Adorable!!! <3

Don’t forget to follow the trail of posts below to see all the great recipes from today’s participants. Lots of fun ideas to create!!

More fun Valentine’s posts to enjoy…

If you’d like to check out some of my past Valentine’s ideas, here are a few to enjoy…

Happy touring, dear friends!

Barb πŸ™‚

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Holidays, Home Decor, Pinterest Challenge, Tablescapes

Pumpkins, Pinecones & Cranberries ~ A Fall Centerpiece

Happy Tuesday, dear friends! It’s the fourth Tuesday of the month and you know it’s all about our monthly Pinterest Challenge. If you are coming over from Carol at Bluesky at Home, welcome! This month Cindy of County Road 407 has picked cranberries as our theme. I thought about making something yummy, but then I thought maybe I’d make a beautiful fall centerpiece…

Our inspiration piece comes just from a beautiful photograph Cindy has chosen and we were given free rein to do anything we were inspired to create, bake or decorate!!! I love themes like this as we can go with whatever feels natural to us.

Love love love Cindy’s new PC logo!!!

I hadn’t shared many fall posts this season, between work and meetings, I’ve been very busy with IOOF events (fundraisers) and spending time with my mother-in-law. It is nice to create something beautiful for fall and have it be an inspiration starting point for you! πŸ™‚

Transitional Fall Centerpiece Basket

I’ve chosen to make a fall centerpiece using pinecones, pumpkins and cranberries. As I was heading to bed one evening, that phrase popped into my head and I got up to write it down (so I wouldn’t forget). I am really excited to share it with you!

I think this centerpiece basket makes the perfect transition between early fall’s pumpkin-y oranges to Thanksgiving time and beyond.

Here’s what I pulled from around the house and purchased to make this basket:

  • a rattan basket from my collection
  • three mini pumpkins from outside our front door
  • pinecones in various shapes and sizes
  • a wood round as a lift
  • a fall candle
  • wire cutting pliers
  • a cranberry spray from Hobby Lobby (cranberries have little “stars” on their tops when they are picked fresh from the fields)

Beginning the arrangement. Wing chair re-covering project in the background.

I began by putting in pinecones in the traditional Christmas tree shape (the usual ones) and some of the elongated ones I saved from visiting Georgia several years ago when I went to High Point Market.

I found the elongated ones at Biltmore Estate, actually.

Next, I added in the little pumpkins I pulled in from out front ~ you’ve seen these guys already in last month’s Fall Front Porch challenge ~ and layered them around the candle.

Love these little pumpkins!

I bought three sprays of large cranberries but only needed one. I used a pair of wire cutters to cut off pieces with a length of stem to tuck in between the pinecones.

This was fun because you can put as much or as little as you like! Since I used (1) candle, (3) pumpkins, it seemed logical to use (5) small sprays of cranberries. Odd numbers always work well in decorating, don’t you think?

Let the decorating fun begin!

Then it was time to decorate the table. I brought in some books with fall colored covers, dark pink mums in their nursery pot from outside, and a small capital with two ceramic figurines who are also dressed for autumn.

And that’s how I chose to use cranberries in my transitional fall centerpiece. I hope you like it!

Next, we swing back up to Cindy from County Road 407. I know you will enjoy the festive autumn garland Cindy has created with cranberries! You’ll find everyone’s posts linked below to come back to visit.

Happy fall decorating, friends,

Barb πŸ™‚

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Home Decor, Pinterest Challenge

Front Porch Fall Fix-Up ~ Two Ways!

Welcome to this month’s Pinterest Challenge, friends! Our host Cindy of County Road 407 has picked a wonderful porch for us to use as our inspiration. Our photograph comes from Rachel and Kevin Quenzer at Sugar Maple Farmhouse…

Fall front porch decor and inspiration

Fall Front Porch Decor Inspiration

If you are just coming over from Laura’s at Everyday Edits, isn’t her porch pretty with all of its pumpkins?? Love it!! I personally have been sooo looking forward to this one (PC) as even though our front porch is small, it’s big on heart! And with the end-of-season sales, Mr. Ethereal and I picked up a new set of all-weather wicker including two chairs with back pillows and cushions in a soft teal, matching ottomans, plus a small table to set in between.

But first let’s talk about today’s challenge, shall we?

Taking a good look at our inspiration photo, Rachel and Kevin have several pieces of:

  • warm wood-toned furniture
  • throw rugs and pillows with stripes and nubby textures
  • shocks of corn stalks and potted fall flowers
  • and, of course, a massive amount of cream and orange pumpkins!

Here is how our front porch looked the first fall after we had moved in. I’ve been feeling pumpkin stacks for a couple of years now, but this year I think we will change things up a bit!

Look #1 – Our Fall Front Porch

I’ve made a big change to our front porch wrought iron chair since last fall by painting it! So this is Look #1, with just a simple pumpkin displayed on this chair. Striking all on its own!

Loving this!

Here in North Texas, pumpkins are just becoming available, so I used only a sprinkling of Baby Boo pumpkins and the one big Connecticut Field pumpkin on our front porch. Mr. Ethereal picked this big guy up at Costco for me. He’s a keeper! <3

Here’s our first look in full! The basket of little Baby Boos wasn’t in place yet but you will see them in just a couple of photos… πŸ™‚

These urns are planted with yellow lantana (2 plants this side, 3 in the other), blue lobelia (1 each planter) and three pink pentas in each. Loving this color combination!

The flowers I’ve used are both real and faux. From a YouTube gardener I follow, I learned a basic rule of thumb when gardening is to plant flowers, perennials and shrubs which bloom in blues, pinks, yellows and orange. I think I’ve ticked all the boxes here colorwise!

When I arrived home from work last Friday evening, a small Carpenter bee was hovering by my front door. Guess he liked this color combination, too!!

Look #2 – Our Fall Front Porch now

Just by changing out the chair, we have a whole new feel to the front porch! The teal of the pillow and cushion on the new all-weather wicker chairs brings out the blues in the two lobelias, making them much more visible now in the planters. We found this set of two wicker chairs (my Titanic chairs!), two matching ottomans and a small round table combination as a great end-of-season buy at Lowe’s! πŸ™‚

Simply changing out the chair really gives a whole new look to our front porch. Adding a soft throw brings a little more of a fall look as well as a bit of the soft carpet look from our inspiration photo. That’s my fall front porch two ways, friends!!

Now let’s check out Carol’s from Bluesky at Home. I know you are going to love how her porch turned out! Thank you for visiting today and I hope you will visit everyone on today’s tour. <3

Happy fall, y’all,

Barb πŸ™‚

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Home Decor, Pinterest Challenge

Let’s Decorate Pretty Fall Baskets with Pumpkins and Roses

Welcome, friends, to this month’s Pinterest Challenge! For an early fall decorating idea, we are creating beautiful autumn baskets with you in mind using all the bounty of the season…

As always, I want to thank Cindy from County Road 407 for leading our team of happy basket enthusiasts! If you are just coming over from Laura at Everyday Edits and/or this is your first time here, welcome!!

Isn’t Laura’s basket styling just beautiful?!! She is a navy girl all the way! No, not the military way (though her father-in-law is a retired colonel), but in that she LOVES navy as her favorite color. Check out her beautiful home!!!

Today’s inspiration comes from a post written by Janelle Trinette. Janelle’s style features lots of neutrals and woods with loads of nubby textures, which really stands out in her decor. She uses a lot of sisal and bark which gives her decorating scheme a real outdoorsy look. Recently I read a post she wrote about hiking Bryce Canyon in Utah (it was good!) ~ on my bucket list of fun places to go see and hike!

Interestingly, we shared Janelle’s photograph of a stacked pumpkin in one of last year’s Pinterest Challenges when we decorated our mantels and you can see that photograph here.

My recreation can be found here: An Early Fall Mantel Refresh.

Processed with VSCO with m5 preset
This is a second photograph from Janelle’s post.

I love that in this year’s inspiration photo so much texture was used with wood cuts, the nubby basket, the cat tails and wheat, and, of course, the sweet faux pumpkins!

Of course, I also went nuts over the ultra cool door…

Totally adorable and as soon as I saw it, I thought…

“I have a door!”

My son Peter and I picked up this grey-green door during the Great Recession of 2008. We were just heading home after a Scouting event, and someone was changing out their front door after buying a bank-repo house near a friends’ home. So, we hauled this door home in our Sequoia.

It was always meant to become the front door of a future she shed… πŸ˜‰ Hubby has moved it around as needed through our moves and it has been perfect for protecting things on shelving inside our current garage ~ until I needed it (now!).

This challenge inspired me to work on the door a couple of weekends ago adding new hardware and door knobs which I have had forever! Just so it could be a backdrop… πŸ˜€

My next thought was

“I have a large basket!” which I picked up on sale at Target a year or so ago. I love using it in winter to store firewood in it near our fireplace. Recently, it was used as a laundry hamper for my mother-in-law when she stayed with us through the winter.

I had a lot of fun pulling together things to create my basket scene!

Here I’ve layered in bamboo poles inside a Texas star-hung plastic basket behind the nubby willow basket. This takes the place of the grasses and reeds in Janelle’s photo.

pumpkin stack!

It was over 100 degrees when I was putting all of this together, but pulling all of my favorite decorated white and light colored pumpkins out of the attic gave me a burst of joy and energy!

Fall is coming, friends!!! And this past weekend’s rainy weather is a small taste of fall weather… πŸ™‚

Next, I added our bridesmaid’s basket on top of this bistro table to hold dried roses and a small bouquet of lavender. Paired with one of my “mistake” pumpkins made back around 2014.

I love the nubby “string of pearls” look of the Cinderella pumpkin (made by dripping Gorilla Glue on it and adding sparkle glitter) next to the roses and natural grass basket.

And I have a nice big garden shed!!

(Couldn’t get our shed builder to go for my door idea, though. Oh, well!) Our shed really is used for all things garden and it is the perfect spot for us to decorate for today’s Pinterest Challenge.

It just required me to move a few things around (Mr. Ethereal’s storage and some tools in black and yellow plastic storage tubs from my inlaws’ former home in California). Tools he needs to go through and decided what to keep and what can go.

Which is why it was a challenge to get a similar photograph to our inspiration piece!

I couldn’t back up too far… (haha) Too much stuff behind me, lol!! πŸ˜‰

I was also inspired to rehang this little chandelier we used in our Prairie Home RV! It is hung off of a little wrought iron bird hanger found years ago at Walmart.

Happy fall decorating, everyone!

I hope this post has inspired you to take stock of what you have laying around the house, and to pick out pieces to bring your fall decor together in a fresh new way…. Everything you see here was something I already had, so $0.00 were spent on this challenge! Always a win!!

Thanks, y’all, for stopping by! Up next is Niky from The House on Silverado with her fall basket rendition; her basket vignette looks so nice, don’t you agree?!!

Enjoy the rest of the tour!

And here’s to cooler weather,

Barb πŸ™‚

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A Quick & Easy Summer Peach Cobbler in Tupperware’s Vintage Stack Cooker

Bonjour, mes amies! Je tΓ©cris de Paris… Welcome to this month’s scrumptious Pinterest Challenge where we are making our favorite peach recipes for you!

How do we say “peach” in French?

Les pΓͺches…

If you are just coming over from Lynne at My Family Time for the first time, welcome! Lynne’s recipe looks totally delicious, doesn’t it?!! These challenges are so much fun and we have a great line up of goodies for your gastronomic pleasure.

The summer dessert I’ve chosen to make is super easy, takes just a few ingredients, and my version is mostly sugar free ~ perfect for anyone watching their sugars. It is a Peach Cobbler, similar to Lynne’s, but of course, mine is made in the microwave. Every recipe, even if similar, is always a different treat!

Health benefits of peach fruit include relief from hypokalemia, cancer, obesity, cholesterol, blood stasis and neurodegenerative diseases. It helps in maintaining healthy vision, skin care, nervous system, healthy bones, and teeth. It has anti-aging properties and also helps in detoxification, as well as improving digestion and cellular health. It has a wealth of essential nutrients and antioxidants which are valuable during pregnancy and it helps in strengthening the immune system.

Cindy from County Road 407 has found the perfect photo for us to use as our inspiration. It comes from Organic where Author Meenakshi Nagdeve in her article Health Benefits and Nutrition of Peach touts a ton of facts about why peaches are so good for us.

I won’t bore you with all those facts but a couple of important ones are that peaches provide us with anti-oxidants and beta-carotene for good eye health. As soon as I saw our inspiration photo, I knew right away that I would make this super easy Peach Cobbler Recipe using my now-vintage Tupperware Stack Cooker.

For this recipe I used only the top cover and middle sections of the stacker. It’s nice as this Tupperware set can be used in several different ways plus you can bake microwave cakes in it, too!

It is a simple summertime favorite ~ Peach Cobbler baked in the microwave! What could be easier AND not heat up the house?

As I begin writing this post, it was 107 degrees outside yesterday (7/18/22 and it is supposed to 100 F today (7/19/22). Way too hot to be turning on an oven indoors!

***North Texas has been up over 100 degrees since mid-June. Even here in Paris, France (where I currently am), this past week they had sweltering days of 106 F/41.1 C degrees on the day I was flying out from DFW. Europe is experiencing some of the worst heat they have ever had, and in countries where only a very few homes have air conditioning, but I digress… πŸ˜‰

Here are the ingredients (my notes)

3 peaches cut up, the hard inside pith area cut off, and then cut into chunks

Substitute Monks Fruit sugar for the brown sugar; it is non-glycemic.

Add the rest like it says.

I added a little more oats and it helped absorb some of the water from the cooked peaches.

Btw, the scent from the peaches was heavenly!

And here is the recipe

  1. Super easy to just cut up the peaches (I left my skins on as they were soft)
  2. toss on the honey and water mixture, blend to coat.
  3. dot with small pats of butter
  4. cook 5 – 7 min. on High in microwave. I cooked mine for only 5 minutes and it was perfect (using two soft and one hard peach).
  1. In a separate bowl, add oats, Monks Fruit sugar substitute (1:1 ratio), and All-spice
  2. Soften remaining butter in microwave (if hard like mine was from frig.; can’t leave on counter in summer… ants!) and add to dry ingredients. Smoosh in with the back of a fork (yep, smoosh! It’s a Southern thing. ;))
  3. Stir in chopped nuts (pecans!!!)
  4. Spoon over 2/3 of the oat mixture on top of the peaches

Dish the peach mixture into pretty serving bowls and top with the rest of the oat and nut crumble ~ dig in!!!

I totally wish I had grabbed more peaches as I took the leftovers to our Rebekah’s meeting later that evening after I made the cobbler. There was really only enough for everyone to just have a taste ~ 1/4 to 1/2 cup each. This included a friend who is in his 70’s with Type 1 diabetes.

Well, friends, that’s it! I hope you will pin my photos and/or this Pinterest pin to your boards, thank you!! And thank you to Cindy, as always, for hosting!!

Next up is Laura from Everyday Edits whose recipe I am sure is going to add to your subliminal desire to just run right out to the store for these delicious fruits!

Enjoy visiting everyone on this month’s peach recipe tour!!

Bon appΓ©tit,

Barb πŸ™‚

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Home Decor, Pinterest Challenge

Having Fun Decorating with Patriotic Colors

Welcome to this month’s Pinterest Challenge, friends! Cindy of Country Road 407 has gathered us all together once again to celebrate the arrival of summer with a challenge using Patriotic Colors! (Don’t you just love our national flag’s red, white and blue?!!) If you are just coming over from My Family Thyme with Lynne, welcome!

OMGosh, I can’t wait to get to know Lynne!! Her style is wonderfully warm and welcoming, plus she paints gorgeous watercolors… Lynne hails from Connecticut (Go UConn!), where my parents last lived, and my youngest brother and his family still live right next door to my mother and father’s former home in Woodbury.

Jumping into our post, our Cindy found this month’s inspiration from another blogging friend Cindy from Edith & Evelyn Vintage

Cindy of Edith & Evelyn Vintage found this on the internet and used in her post Patriotic Decor Ideas.

There were a ton of great photographs to choose from with lots of inspiration in Cindy’s post and I just loved this faded Old Glory she shared; it really spoke to me…

Cindy also had this incredible chair in the same inspiring post:

Patriotic Decor | Edith & Evelyn |

I loooove this chair and it is really a stunner with the Americana theme boldly proclaimed in its fabric choices! Plus it’s a French chair! (What’s not to love?) So I guess I could have gone soft or bold in my color choices this time. πŸ˜‰

But my personal penchant is to use the softer versions of these colors this year.

Like what’s-blooming-in-my-garden-right-now-colors…

I haven’t been writing much lately because I have been working hard in the garden. I do have an upcoming post with what’s happened since the last time I shared the garden. I’ve been planting and digging a lot on the weekends, plus visiting with my mother-in-law at her new home. She is really enjoying her new garden. We will take a trip over there this summer so you can see it, too!

My hydrangeas have come into their own this year! A glorious year for hydrangeas… Actually, I learned the secret here in Texas is consistent watering, just about every day. πŸ˜‰

Back to our patriotic basket

The past couple of years I went with our country’s bold colors in my Pinterest Challenge posts, like this outdoor patio patriotic decor post.

And this one where I created fun placemats using old jeans as the base for the placemats and pretty pockets became holders for silverware..

I do tend to hop back and forth between soft patriotic colors then bold, then right back! Here in this post, I gathered a number of patriotic ideas together, if you’d like to check them out:

Which leads me back to today’s project ~ making a softly colored Patriotic Basket to hang on your front door, set on a table as part of a tabletop display, or to hang on your garden shed like I’ve done here. πŸ™‚

For this mont’s Pinterest Challenge, we have the freedom to create anything patriotic we want, so I thought about bringing out my French style basket and filling it with faux flowers!

Making this basket is simple:

  • Add spagnum sheet moss to the bottom and sides of the wire basket.
  • Place a piece of floral foam inside (or bunched up chicken wire) to support floral stems.
  • Poke in soft pink faux hydrangea blossoms, along with daisy stems and lavender and cornflower-blue larkspur wands.
  • Tuck in more moss, like this spring green reindeer moss, to fill up the empty spaces after you’ve added your flowers and foam.

Hang up and enjoy!

And that’s all there is to creating this basket. πŸ™‚

I spent $0.00 on this project… right up until I needed more moss… The reindeer moss I found at our local Calloway’s Garden Center this past weekend and it cost $16.99 for a large box, which is still quite full. I will get a lot of use out of it for the price!

To make this basket more patriotic, just tuck in some little American flags! When the holiday is over, just pull the flags back out for a casual summertime door basket display.

Thanks for stopping by on the tour today! Next we swing back up to Cindy from County Road 407 and I know you will love all of her patriotic decorating ideas!! Do stop by and check out all the wonderful decor pieces our friends have put together for you.

Happy almost summertime!

Barb πŸ™‚

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Home Decor, Pinterest Challenge, Tablescapes

An Ethereal Springtime Basket in Whites and Silver

Hello, dear friends! Springtime baskets are on the menu for you in this month’s Pinterest Challenge. Thank you to Cindy from County Road 407 for hosting this hop and for giving us this basket challenge!

If you are stopping by from Michelle of Thistle Key Lane for the first time, welcome! Didn’t you just love what Michelle has created with her basket? Sooooo pretty!!

Well, our inspiration photograph this month comes from Emily at Le Cultivateur. I love her style and this centerpiece is just up my alley!

Love all the greenery with the whites and silver ~ which is what I picked up on!

When I first went over to view Emily’s post, I saw her Easter centerpiece version of this basket with it’s large white rabbit and it is still perfect (to me, anyway) for an after-Easter springtime table topper!

Here is the photograph I decided to copy:

This tableau just says, “Spring has sprung!”

What I loved about this basket

  • Whites everywhere! ~ a large white basket to hold spring plants, a large white rabbit with his adorable lace bow, the painted white raised board. A rumpled, white dresser scarf with lace around its edges added its softness.
  • Silver ~ I love silver candlesticks and they add just that touch of elegance!
  • Greenery ~ inside the large basket, live plants are nestled together with a grapevine hoop added as a “basket handle.”

What I put in my ethereal springtime basket

  • Whites ~ I looked at my handled baskets but they were too small, so I went with this whitewashed flat tobacco basket as my “board” and basket. I tried it with a white wood cake plate but it didn’t look right, so I just added my newer Lowe’s stone rabbit, a white paper mΓ’chΓ© rabbit, a small white plant pot, white inside a clear tealight holder, plus a white birdhouse.
  • Silver ~ copying our inspiration, I chose two silver mercury glass candlesticks plus one white metal one to hold softly pink tapers. Depending upon the lighting, each of the rabbits and the basket take on a silvery glow.
  • Greenery ~ This lavender-pink amaryllis stalk is the first to bloom in our northern sideyard and was my inspiration for this laying out the table in month’s challenge! It’s simple beauty paired with a faux paperwhite in a white plant pot bring in some of the greenery from our inspiration piece.
  • Table runner lace ~ I have dresser scarves but would have had to wash the one from our bedroom, so I looked in my linen closet and found this sweet, tatted window curtain to use on my table instead! I love its French Country farmhouse look and the rumpling on either end adds just the right look to this tableau.

Not having any Spanish moss to add to my basket, I added a garden saucer with moss balls I made last year paired with a couple of woven grass balls. This helped bring in more greenery to my table’s look.

I love the simplicity of this basket centerpiece and for me it is simple, ethereal elegance! If you are looking for something to decorate your table for Mother’s Day, just replace the rabbits with a bowl of garden roses or other flowers. That will give you more greenery and less of an Easter look.

Now let’s see what Carol of Bluesky at Home has created for you…

And please do stop by my other friends on today’s Pinterest Challenge tour!

Happy springtime,

Barb πŸ™‚

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Home Decor, Tablescapes

A Bunny-full Centerpiece for Spring

Welcome to this month’s Pinterest Challenge, dear friends, where a group of us gals gets together to put our own spin on an inspiration piece. I want to start today’s post with a big shout out to Cindy from County Road 409 for pulling us all together again ~ thank you, Cindy!!

If you are coming over from Kim at Shiplap and Shells and are here for the first time, welcome. I’m so glad y’all are here!! Wasn’t Kim’s table fun with her bunnies and I just love her flower-shaped woven placemats… Adorable!

tiered tray decorated for spring with greenery, a birdhouse, candles and a bunny beside stacked plates and a bunny topiary

Our inspiration this month is this adorable bunny centerpiece from Suzy at Worthing Court and boy is it packed full of cuteness and style!

Using a wooden tiered stand and a stack of plates as risers, Suzy brings in:

  • spring greens in the forms of plants, a bunny topiary in a pot, four salad plates and a sweet green water jug
  • earth tones in small pots, a small birdhouse, plus little candleholders, the tiered stand and the grass table runner and woven round placemats
  • bright whites in dinner plates, small candles, a ceramic bunny and bird eggs
  • textures both rough and smooth

There’s a lot going on here and a lot to recreate, so let’s get started!

Not having a tall wooden tiered tray, I improvised with my wood charcuterie board, a candlestick I made over topped with a wooden heart-shaped cutting board.

How I put together my centerpiece

In Suzy’s post, she talked about “raiding your own stash” so I’ve looked through my spring decorations box and at what I could tier and what tiered trays I do have first…

I have a lot of wooden pieces luckily and candles here and there…

I made a tiered tray since my other two are tiered cake plates and just didn’t have the right look. Then I rounded up various ceramic, paper mΓ’chΓ© and coconut fiber bunnies from my stash to decorate my “trays.”


Next, I ran out to the garden shed in search of little terracotta pots to bring in their colors and textures to match those in our inspiration piece. The bulbous pot I found at that cute garden center I wrote about last year ~ The Greenhouse ~ in Oklahoma last year. The other banded pot I found at Ace Hardware (I think) in Carrolton, Texas.

No green tableware

Rats! if I didn’t just see some really cute lettuce-patterned majolica plates at Tuesday morning recently and I didn’t pick them up. Well, if you don’t have green salad plates to pick up the greens in your greenery, bring in the greens with what you do have!

I stacked my favorite white dinner plates (from Marshalls years ago) with my first set of tableware, Villeroy & Boch Botanica dessert/salad plates (adding my green), then added a Wedgwood Sarah’s Garden* teacup to bring in more whites and smooth textures.

*I highlighted Sarah’s Garden in case you might like to read about my meeting Sarah, Duchess of York back in the early 2000’s when she was a spokesperson for Wedgwood.

I loved the spring greenery Suzy used in her centerpiece so I pulled in several moss balls I made and a couple of dried hydrangea heads I had. The hydrangea blossoms added the wooly plant texture I was looking for.

Lots of bunny love here!

And lastly, I also had the round, gilded and woven placemats like those in the inspiration photograph in my stash; they look perfect as “nests” for any place setting!

I didn’t find my bird’s eggs (they have been lost for several years since I found some…) and I forgot about the bird house, but I do have one! So I’ll share it here. πŸ˜‰

Another Pinterest Challenge share from a year or two ago!!

Thank you so much for stopping by and I hope you will visit all of our friends on today’s centerpiece tour. Please think about subscribing to my blog if you haven’t done so already. I appreciate you!!!

Next up is my friend Niky from The House on Silverado. Her tablescape is just lovely with all her rabbits, and I know you’ll love it!!!

Spring blessings to you,

Barb πŸ™‚

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Christmas, Home Decor, Pinterest Challenge, Uncategorized

Using Garland Throughout Your Home

Welcome friends to this month’s Garland Pinterest Challenge hosted by our friend Cindy of County Road 407! I am excited to share how I have used garland in every home I have lived in, as well as this sneak peek of our Christmas mantel…

This month we don’t have an inspiration photograph or blogger to share, which is very freeing. Just a message: “to share garland” was the text Cindy sent all of us on this month’s PC tour. If you are coming over from Laura of Everyday Edits for the first time, welcome!

Oh, and don’t you like the new Pinterest Challenge graphic??! I am going red and white this year, with mostly white for decorating my home for Christmas, so this new graphic fits my theme to a tee.

Garlands of Christmas Past

I love decorating our chandeliers every year for Christmas and decorating the very first year we were in our Texas home was a real thrill! Gleefully I glammed up this former dining room chandy with mercury glass ornaments set underneath a soft, very realistic pine garland.

I have been on a Nordic look for several years and this year might be similar, though our son, daughter-in-law and 18 month-old grandson will be down. So… we might add in a little more cute animals for Milo! (Which I have added on the mantel so far.)

When we were still living in our Prairie Home, our Heartland Charleston Landmark 365 RV, we hung a light-weigh acrylic chandelier and yes it had garland entwined in its clear branches!

Outside that same year, garland was swagged down the length of our outdoor dining table. It looked quite ethereal indeed and is a favorite beautiful way to use garlands out of doors.

Garlands for everyday

Now garlands don’t have to always be floral or greenery. In this instance, I used an old coat hanger bent into a circle and draped the “wire ring” with pretty white ribbon to hang crystal decorations in our first trailer home.

Quite a different kind of garland, really.

Pearl garlands from the bridal section of Michael’s and Joann Fabrics look lovely draped on the arms of chandeliers, too! Here in this post ~ How to Glam Up Your Chandelier.

This year we have installed a new Shabby Chic style chandelier, which I found on sale at Lamps Plus (not sponsored). Of course, it has to be decked out for the holidays!

And this is just a few of the ways I use garlands. I love decorating with garlands, how about you?

Up next, we begin at the top with Cindy of County Road 407 who has a fun garland project for you to create! Do stop by and take a tour of all of the garland inspired ideas everyone has for you.

Thank you for pinning!

Happy hopping and here’s to a wonderful holiday season,

Barb πŸ™‚

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Add a Little Fall Color to Your Bedroom

Welcome to our first fall Pinterest Challenge focusing on adding in fall color to our bedrooms. If you are just coming over from the main group of bloggers, or are here for the first time, welcome! As always, I’d like to thank Cindy from County Road 407 for setting us up with our inspiration photograph and our friend Paula from Virginia Sweet Pea for taking the reins as our host…

***Cindy had a family emergency and I would like to ask you to keep them in your prayers, thank you. πŸ’œ

Love all the patterns and textures!!!

Our inspiration comes from Courtney over at The Golden Boys and Me

Courtney has the cutest bed linens and is blessed to have a sweet architectural shelf over her bed and black iron headboard to be able to put fun pieces on.

With all the fun pumpkins, black wire and iron in the basket below the seat and above in the chandelier {too cute!}, wood textures in the pumpkin on the bench and the basket on the bed, I love this updated farmhouse look.

My bedroom’s look

I have a really old shelving unit but not a shelf anymore. We had sweet early-1990’s wooden shelves with heart cutouts and pegs to hang things on, but we sold those when we were getting ready to move everything to storage when we sold our last house.

So, I hung up this wicker basket I found a year or so ago and kept the roses {my signature} in it while adding in some faux fall berries and leaves.

I changed out the lightweight Shabby Chic white and pink roses quilt that we had on for summer to this deeper lavender and darker roses quilt. I like this one on our California king bed as it is still lightweight but we can easily add the other quilt on top as the weather get colder here in early fall.

To bring in some of the oranges used in our inspiration bedroom, I’ve added a favorite fall pillow with Autumn Blessings scripted across it. I also brought in this super lightweight throw we use for afternoon naps when the days are still so warm, plus a small white metal tray with a little scarecrow we have had since our now-grown kids were little.

This is coupled with two pumpkins, one orange and the other a white one I sparkled about six years ago or so.

We bought this bench online about two years ago now, our first fall here in this home, and I love its Old World look! I guess I should have stuck some goodies underneath but I usually decorate more simply so this is how it normally looks, a perfect place to hide our slippers and shoes underneath… πŸ˜‰

Time for tea

My little addition to this fall bedroom challenge is to include a little tea party! Bringing in a tray I painted white {which adds more of our inspiration’s white look} layered with fall dishes including this sweet Cracker Barrel brown transferware plate and a Royal Winton teacup and saucer.

Two persimmon cookies are stacked atop our little plate with a small fall napkin I sewed from leftover fabric years ago ~ perfect for a little afternoon reading in bed!

And that’s it for me, dear friends!

I hope you enjoy touring others who are on the main tour. You can find those links over at Paula’s of Virginia Sweet Pea. Due to the event being “cancelled,” then finding out it was still going on, many of us didn’t see the update until too late. My post was ready so I’m happy to have it to share with you… Next time!

Blessings to you all,

Barb πŸ™‚