Pink Magnolia Spring

Anyone else a big fan of pink magnolia trees?🙋🏽‍♀️ I’m finally getting one planted soon, and I’m so excited! Meanwhile, these faux branches do the trick!

This pink and green tablescape is perfectly suited to a relaxed girls’ night, a birthday celebration, or any celebration for the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority!

The generously proportioned deep green glass vases were a Home Goods purchase years ago. Paired with the faux magnolia branches and a bit of Spring greenery, they make a huge impact at first sight. Should you have access to natural pink magnolia branches, this is a terrific way to add a lot of bang for no bucks!

The playful tone on tone design on the Montclair Collection plates is joyful and relaxed. Their modern square shape against the muted silver chargers keeps things light.

Pretty pink napkins, offset to the side, are cinched with pink “pearl” rings. The napkin ring beading takes its cue from the plate design. The flatware is sleek and simple.

Loose gazing balls and votive candlelight add shine and movement to the centerpiece.

The lovely pink stemware has a design very similar to that of the plates.

The vases on the dining table are purposely arranged to form a gentle arch that plays peekaboo with the buckets of tulips and ranunculus on the vitrine behind it.

To see the green vases paired with the green plates in a whole different way, check this out:

To see another post using these faux pink magnolia branches:

If you’d like to see more pink & green tablescapes on this site:

Welcome to the Carrot Patch

It’s official. We are now in the midst of Easter Week 2022. I’m trying to remember when my prayers have been as fervent and anguished as they’ve been these past several weeks. So much horror, sadness, and suffering happening on a global🇺🇦 as well as a personal level.😔 (My favorite brother-in-law, Kenny, passed away, and his services had to be canceled due to an aggressive COVID🦠😷😷🤒 outbreak.) My heart is so heavy.💔

I’ve got to escape, place my thoughts elsewhere for a while. I’m posting this joyous Easter tablescape as a respite from this world’s wretchedness with continued prayers for peace.

Garden vegetables are the star of this show! I’m fortunate to be within 30 miles of Nell Hills in Kansas City, MO. I found these crazy gorgeous, scarily realistic carrot tops (this season) and lettuce heads (2020) there. They will both see a lot of action over the years to come!

The napkins are actually towels from that bargain area in the front of every Target store. They have really upped their game there in recent years! The towels came in sets of 2 patterns: This one with bunnies on a green background…

…and this one with the inspiration for this post’s title on a white background.

White ceramic flower pots filled with green leaf lettuce 🥬 and carrots.🥕🥕🥕 While these are props, you could use the real deal and then have one whale of a salad the following day!🥗

To-mā-to/ To-máh-to. It’s all good in the garden!🍅🍅🍅

The vegetable theme carries over to the vitrine.

What’s Easter without eggs?

Who says floral greenery can’t be produce?🥬

Coffee spoons nestled together in a ceramic basket.

If you’d like to check out more Spring and Easter tablescapes on this blog, here’s a LONG list from which to choose. I wish you a HAPPY EASTER filled with joy and peace.

Hey, Pumpkin!

It’s November 1, and autumn is coming to a rapid close as wretched cold weather settles in. That makes me a bit sad as fall is my favorite time of year. I’ve especially enjoyed the bounty of pumpkins in our area and all the inspiration they have prompted! I’ve been able to create a variety of tablescapes and vignettes indoors and out using the same basic elements and adding special touches.

When I saw this gorgeous, colorful table runner at Home Goods, I knew right away how I wanted to use it. This rich pattern of pumpkins, sunflowers, and berries traverses the runner from end to end!

I’ve gotten my money’s worth from this Cambridge “Esben” flatware this fall season. Its faux wood handles are a perfect complement to the season’s decor. The same goes for the mustard yellow Pier 1 plates (see them used a whole different way on the post “Candy Colored Autumn“) and leather-look chargers from Hobby Lobby. Here I topped off the setting with a generously proportioned turmeric-colored soup bowl (see the bowl with matching plates on the post “Most Egg-cellent Breakfast“.) The ivory napkin repeats the background color in the runner. Because the centerpiece is so busy, I used austere glassware.

One of my husband’s nurses gifted me with these sheds from her farm in rural Kansas a few years ago. (First used in the post “Hunter Tablescape – Gentlemen’s Winter Retreat” in 2012.) They add a lot of form and girth, as well as a bit of height, to the centerpiece arrangement.

I picked up the round basket at Home Goods. They had so many nice ones from which to choose this season!

I first used these rustic orange finials for the post “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!” back in 2010. Eleven years later they’ve resurfaced for this table.

My husband’s recent 51st high school class reunion (or 50 + 1 as they called it since the pandemic shut down plans for their jubilee celebration in 2020) was a lovely event. One of his classmates is a very talented florist who provided the centerpieces for the banquet night. I brought one home and rearranged it to fit into this moss-covered vase for the dining room vitrine.

Are you following me on Instagram? If not, I invite you to do so! There are quick little daily posts there that are different content than here on the blog…house and home-related vignettes you might enjoy!

For more autumnal tablescapes on this blog:

Have a warm and wonderful November!

Thanksgiving Dessert Buffet

Have you ever considered a Thanksgiving Progressive Dinner? A moveable feast is a fresh way to enjoy the holiday. Perhaps pre-dinner cocktails and hors d’oeuvres at the first home while watching the Macy’s Parade and Bowl games, the main course at House #2 with a little more football, and finally dessert at House #3 followed by a neighborhood tour of Christmas lights to kick off the new holiday? You’ve arrived at House #3!

(1:18. No music, just in case you’re opening this at work! I’ve got your back!😉)
And oops! Yes, that IS an open laundry room door caught in the mirror!🙄

A table laden with a variety of desserts is a sure way to delight your guests! I describe this one as Thoreau meets Liberace…a hybrid of natural and glitzy elements.

This dessert bar could be easily transformed into a Christmas/winter theme by exchanging the pumpkins and wheat for holiday elements like small trees, poinsettias or paperwhites, and interesting ornaments.

The huge dessert board that displays the cookies and pecan pie is from a lovely shop in downtown Lee’s Summit, MO, called Very Violet Boutique. I have BIG plans for this substantially-proportioned board in the coming years!

I LOVE this tray from Home Goods that holds the Cambridge “Esben” flatware and Pier 1 napkins! Those wrought iron handles…yaaaaaassssss!!!

These little duck casseroles were purchased at World Market YEARS ago. They’re perfect for individual rice or bread pudding with whiskey sauce! Emphasis on the whiskey sauce, y’all!🥃

The table runner with colorful meandering vines was purchased along with 6 matching placemats at Pier 1 many years ago. It’s nice to be able to shop your home for “just the perfect thing” and actually find it!

The wheat sheaves and smaller charcuterie/cheese/breadboards are all from Home Goods. I particularly like the wood slice cake riser. It will serve me well for years to come.

I created this cupcake stand using a couple of wood slices and a 3-legged wrought iron piece I happened to have. The oven-safe Rae Dunn cupcake holders are from Home Goods. They REALLY dress up cupcakes and muffins!!!

The expanse of desserts is broken up with this pumpkin/gourd/acorn/apple-filled wooden “trough” from Nell Hill’s in Kansas City, MO. I’ve used this vessel for a couple of tablescapes this season, including “Home for the Thanksgiving Holiday“.

More miniature covered casseroles from World Market for perhaps a taste of crème brûlée?

I have had these striking candelabra for a number of years and pull them out just about every fall for decorating somewhere around the house. As I often do, I used metal case candles which are a bit safer if accidentally knocked over. These are 15″H and perfect for lending a bit more height to the tablescape. (I have them in 6″ and 25″, too!)

More desserts, you ask?!! Why, indeed! It’s a dessert extravaganza!!! Don’t forget the coffee!

So there you have it! Perfect for Thanksgiving or anytime during the holiday season when family and friends gather together!

This is my final autumn-themed post for 2021. I hope to see you back here soon for the winter holidays!

If you’re looking for more ideas for your Thanksgiving or autumn tables, take a peek at these on this blog!

If you’re looking for more dessert buffet ideas:

Cinco de Mayo On the Cul-de-Sac

Our annual Cinco de Mayo cul-de-sac celebration was another fun success last night with beautiful weather, great food, FABULOUS margaritas, and terrific music…all shared by the best neighbors ever! I was able to snap a few pics with my phone that I hope you will enjoy and keep in mind for your next South of the Border-inspired celebration!

I set up a table for 6 in front of our house for us who are fully vaccinated. We all routinely socialize, so it was nice to be able to sit together after a full year of separation! Inspiration for the tablescape came from the fancy hand painted rooster glasses I recently purchased at a friend’s yard sale. Eight of them for just $10!!! Add orange Dollar Tree plates, Cambridge “Esben Beachwood” flatware, a couple of colorful crisscrossed runners, and a rooster to the table’s center flanked by succulents and (faux) Gerbera daisies…and voila!

I made and individually packaged up snickerdoodles and copycat Sara Lee pound cake (SO good!) for everyone as a take home favor. I don’t think any of it actually made it home with anyone. It was all really tasty, and I hit the kitchen early this morning to fill orders for more!🤣🤣🤣

That was our Cinco de Mayo! How was yours?

To see additional Cinco de Mayo/South of the Border-inspired tablescapes on the site:

Wildflower Easter

Here is the 3rd of 3 tablescapes I’m considering for Easter Sunday…and just in the nick of time! I’ll have to decide by Friday so that I can get the ball rolling! If YOU have a favorite of the last 3 posts, please drop me a comment to let me know which most tickles your fancy! I’ll combine your votes with those from my Instagram account for the final decision!

The inspiration for this tablescape came from my Mikasa Stone Craft dishes in mixed and matched hues of mauve, pistachio, cornflower, and green. SO MANY tablescaping opportunities with a mix!

The Mikasa plates and mugs are paired up with 222 Fifth Bunny Land bowls (Home Goods) that also have varied color checkerboard rims to mix and match.

Bright lavender napkins from LinenTablecloth.com sprout from each coffee mug, and the egg cups are filled with pastel M&Ms that mimic the melange of colors in the dishes and centerpiece.

The mix/match of dish colors at each place setting is unified with uniform white ceramic and rattan chargers, bamboo stainless flatware, napkins, egg cups, and glass cloches from Nell Hills in Kansas City, MO.

The “grass” centerpiece, purchased for a mere $10 at an estate sale some years ago, has been punched up with a variety of Spring “wildflowers” in colors that complement the dishes. You’ll notice the same daisies on the plates are in the centerpiece to tie it all together.

On the vitrine behind the dining table are colorful cupcakes (in cupcake cups and on a ceramic cake pedestal from Home Goods/TJ Maxx) with another small arrangement of daisies. (All flowers used in this post are faux for demonstration purposes. I’ll use the real deal for my Sunday tablescape!)

So…take a peek back at the other 2 entries – “Lettuce Talk About Easter” and “Artichoke Easter” – then let me know which is your favorite. I’ll post the winner!

Looking for more Easter tablescape inspiration? Look no further! See if one of these floats your boat!:

Christmas in the Kitchen 2020

I’m especially pleased with the kitchen this year! I spend so much time in there (always!), and I wanted it to be as festive as possible. And for those of you keeping score…yes, the woodwork has been painted white, the walls pale grey. And the floors have been refinished. BIG, MESSY, expensive job, but necessary.

INSPIRATION:

I’ve been churning out SO MANY desserts this Christmas. Baking has been Job 1…which has made exercising Job 2!

A compilation of leftover decorative items made special with the addition of lighted “snowballs” and bright berries.

We have a light-filled eat-in kitchen area that is so nice to spend time enjoying the view as well as the food. The bunny, Barton, is a perennial staple, changing his “uniform” on a whim for Easter, Christmas, summer, fall….you name it! To see other holiday décor where Barton the bunny makes his mark, check out “Better Late Than Never – Christmas 2016, Part 1“, “Spring & Easter Around the House“, “Easter Bloom“, “Easter Brunch“, and “Barton’s Easter Brunch“.

The combination of a Spiced Gingerbread candle from Bath & Body Works, gingerbread houses, and the gingerbread bakery pot for the little jingle bell-filled tree left me no choice but to ACTUALLY BAKE gingerbread! I hadn’t made any since…what, maybe high school???

The towel hanging on the side of the table says “Sorry for What I Said During the Football Game”. It’s a gift from my super cool friend, Liz, at Home & Gardening With Liz. She knows my rabid (and perhaps a teensy bit unhealthy!) affection for my hometown Kansas City Chiefs all too well!

This little area is always fun to decorate, but especially at Christmas when I can go completely overboard! A simple string of 50 white lights adds a glow beyond that of the the Hot Cocoa & Cream candle from Bath & Body Works. (This candle REALLY smells like cocoa!!!) The peppermint trees add color and are continued across the room in the kitchen windows.

This 4-ft. tree is laden with ornaments that represent my time spent in the kitchen at Christmas. I found the little rolling pins in the woodworks department at Hobby Lobby. The checkered “Merry Christmas” ornaments are actually just gift tags. The crystal platter behind the snowman chef in the window is from my late Mom’s Mikasa collection.

Other touches around the kitchen include small trees and boxwood wreaths EVERYWHERE!!! I added red jingle bells, like the ones on the breakfast bar tree, to each teapot already situated on the window shelves. The boxwood wreaths and peppermint candy trees add more color and texture to the space. The top of the refrigerator gets a simple greenery arrangement that can continue to enhance the space throughout the winter months.

Our little half bath off the kitchen even gets a little something-something for Christmas! The little ornament on the tree is from my good friend (from way back in high school!), Joan Payne Walter, who said she saw it and thought it looked just like me. It IS dressed like me, too. Wild!

That’s it for the kitchen. Next post we head upstairs to the primary bedroom suite and guest bedroom. I just HAD TO spread a little cheer up there, too! Don’t worry…after Christmas the posts will be much fewer and farther apart!

If you’d like to check out other fun Christmas kitchen posts on this blog, try “Better Late Than Never – Part 4“, “Christmas Coffee“, and “Timberland Christmas“. If black & white buffalo check is your jam, peek in on “Better Late Than Never – Part 2“, “Checkered Christmas – A Snowman Theme“, and “Black & White Barnyard Breakfast“.

Mardi Gras, Baby!

I…AM…STIR CRAZY!!! Nine – count ‘em – NINE weeks since this most recent spine surgery and I am STILL on lockdown for what seems like perpetuity! I’ve been growling and pacing, and I’m just about ready to bite!!! But I am making progress, albeit at a snail’s pace.

Thank goodness for a very welcome email from a freelancer on behalf of TasteOfHome.com who reached out to me for permission to use a photo from my 2013 post, Mardi Gras Madness.  My chance to blog without having to do any real work!!! I hope you will pop over to take a look at “10 Centerpiece Ideas for Your Mardi Gras Party” which went live yesterday. I’m #5 on the countdown.

Have a joyful and raucous (but don’t come to me for bail money!😉) Fat Tuesday, and a loving and memorable Valentine’s Day! I”ll see ya when I’m a bit more limber and mobile!

Other Mardi Gras-themed posts on this blog include:
Celebrate Mardi Gras
Laissez Les Bon Temps Rouler!
Mardi Gras Lite
Mardi Gras Mojo
The Peacock Effect
Peacock Pizzazz!

Valentine’s Day is less than a week away so here are a few posts you might consider for planning a celebration of love for your Valentine or Galentines!
Queen of Hearts Card Party
Platinum & Pink
Be Still My Heart
Should Have Put a Ring On It
Days of Wine & Roses
Chocolate Traditional
Love’s Arrow
Peonies and Pearls
French Poodle
Pretty In Pink
Fairy Tale Wedding Shower
Showered In Pink
Princess Pink Birthday Party

I’m happy to once again join all the ladies and gents over at Susan’s place for the 489th Tablescape Thursday. Pop on over to get lots of Valentine’s Day AND Mardi Gras ideas!

Are You Ready For Some (2-Year-Old) Football?

Hello, howdy, hi there! While I’m still working hard on recuperation (from surgery exactly 8 weeks ago!), I can now at least sit in my office chair for 10-15 minutes at a time before pain swallows me whole. Meanwhile, the Lord works in mysterious ways, and I came across photos from a “Better Kansas City” show Super Bowl 50 segment from two years ago that I never posted! With Super Bowl 52 this coming weekend, it’s perfect timing! Thanks for stopping by, enjoy Super Bowl weekend, and I hope to “see” you sometime in March!

 

 

For this segment I wanted to represent both teams. I had no horse in this race, so no big deal! (Fellow Kansas City Chiefs fans, please forgive me this transgression.  :-))

 

I’m quite fond of these stretchy Spandex tablecloths from LinenTablecloth.com because they go on easy, clean up nicely, and don’t have to be folded. Really! Just scrunch ’em up and store them without wrinkle worries! (I don’t get paid to say nice things about the company. I just want you to know where to find stuff!)

 

The buffet “table runner” is actually composed of 3 gridiron placemats that I previously used for “Hometown Pride: Kansas City Chiefs vs. Denver Broncos” and “Kansas City Chiefs in the Red Zone“.

 

 

 

This horse head was first used to poke fun at the Broncos in my “Hometown Pride” post, but here it is merely fun team symbolism.

 

It is rare that I advocate disposable products, but if you want faster clean up, don’t trust the rowdy folks on your guest list to not throw ironstone dishes at the TV if their team is losing, or just want some variety, there’s lots of fun stuff out there.

 

I’m a big fan of choosing food and/or drinks in the team colors!

 

 

The Denver Broncos presence is felt all over the buffet table with the team colors of orange and blue. I found the cute little “official” bottle cozies (with working whistles!) and the pom poms (fun favor for guests to cheer on their chosen team!) at a local Party City.

 

This snazzy, jazzy guest table is all decked out in the Carolina Panthers’ team colors. Layering linens is a great way to bring color and interest to your table! The triple layer linens of Carolina blue, black and white are all from LinenTablecloth.com.

 

 

The place settings are simple but fun with matching placemats and napkins. I sometimes like to use both a fabric and paper napkin. Here, the team colors are well represented by tucking the patterned paper napkin inside the fabric one and allowing it to just peek over the top. (Fabric for your lap, paper for your hands & lips!)

 

Quick, inexpensive, and easy describes this centerpiece in celebration of 50 fifty years of Super Bowl. I bought plain numbers at Hobby Lobby and spray painted them gold, the traditional color for 50th anniversaries. Three footballs from Dollar Tree were also painted gold and set atop  tiered candle holders to lend more varied height to the tablescape.

 

So this was me two years ago (the picture of good health, loud & proud in my Kansas City Chiefs jersey!), one year out from the 3 surgeries (2 spine, 1 shoulder) I endured that year. I was feeling strong and energized after months of physical therapy. This look of healthy glee and accomplishment is my goal for later down the line in 2018, so I’m going to let slow and steady win this race. While I’m still nowhere near being able to create tablescapes at this point, I hope to get there soon!

Other sports themed tablescapes on this blog include:
Hometown Pride
Kansas City Chiefs in the Red Zone
Home of the Lions
Boys of Summer – Baseball Tablescape
The 19th Hole – Golf and Forever Love
Tartan on the Tee

I’m joining Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for her 488th Tablescape Thursday blog party and the 114th Celebrate Your Story with Chloe and Sandra. Lots to see over there from other very talented tablescapers, so check it out!

 

 

 

Autumn In Cactus Country

My good friend (since 6th grade!), Monica, was recently swept away from the Kansas City area to Arizona. Arizona??!?!??!? We’re Midwestern girls! We don’t know anything about ARIZONA!!! We’re used to perceptible changes of seasons, with autumn (next to Christmas, of course) being at the top of our decorating list! We know that spring means pastels, summer means ice cream colors, winter means Chiefs red, and fall means russet, burgundy, deep greens and orange. Lots and lots of orange! What in heaven’s name is a Missouri transplant to do for fall in Arizona??!???!

Asked and answered on a recent “Better Kansas City” segment! This 2-1/2 minute clip includes four different autumn tablescaping palettes I think you’ll enjoy!

One way to bring the season to your table in climes where warm colors can overpower and autumn leaves simply don’t exist is to use white and pastel pumpkins along with lots of succulents.

 

 

 

 

 

 

While the palette is predominantly white, it’s the accompanying elements that lend to the fall feeling. Notice the use of translucent stemware and votive holders that keep the table light. The Home Essentials Antique White dishes, faux mother of pearl flatware, napkins…all in the white family but not the exact tone to add subtle variety.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tucked among the varied sizes of white pumpkins are chicks & hens, jelly bean plants, echeveria, agave and seeded eucalyptus. The greens and burgundy in the succulents are a deliberate nod to the season and keep the tablescape from becoming too austere.

 

While standard votives would look perfectly fine with this vignette, I chose these cylindrical ones from Pier 1 to add just a teensy bit of height. It’s already hot in Arizona, so just a few for ambience!

 

The dining table is loaded with decor, so I elected to keep the buffet behind it sparse. The clay pots I chose for these flowing succulents remind me of a weathered adobe home with its pinkish tones.

The elements used in this tablescape could be applied all around the house for light, airy, fresh fall decorating in southwestern U.S. states like Arizona, New Mexico, Nevada and Oklahoma, and in parts of California, Utah, Texas, and Colorado as well as in Mexico.

Without question this was one of the most fun challenges ever! Monica, I hope this helps! Michael, I still don’t forgive you for taking Monica away! 😉

Other tablescapes on this site from this
“Better Kansas City” show clip:

Autumn Chinoiserie
(others soon to come!)

Other tablescapes on this site
using white pumpkins for fall:

Thanksgiving 2010
Autumn White Wedding
Finally Fall
Over the River and Through the Woods

Another tablescape suitable for fall
using succulents (and sunflowers!):

Cinco de Mayo Simply Done

I’m linking up this week for the first time to “Dishing It & Digging It” and the “Share Your Style” blog party where you can see all kinds of talent in the blog world!