Thursday, February 15, 2018

MacKenzie-Childs Courtyard Tote GIVEAWAY!

My favorite company, MacKenzie-Childs, sent me a new tote bag! 

And we also have one to giveaway to one of my lucky readers!!

I am fortunate that I live only an hour away from Aurora, NY, where you can find the Mackenzie-Childs store, production studio, farm and talented artists.
They also have a new store at Del Lago Casino, which is only 45 min away!  

I started the blogger group of "The Tales of the Traveling Tote", where 12 of us share our travels and tales of places our MacKenzie-Childs tote bags take us. We have named our tote bags and purses and I have decided that my new tote will be "Mr. Dilly".  You can read about my travels in the past few years HERE.  We will all share our next "tales" on March 1st, so stop back to travel along with us!

As you probably already know,  I have been a fan and collector of many of their products since 1983. I enjoy their ceramics, enamel, furniture, home decor and especially their accessories.  You might remember this post (MEN!), where I lost this battle:

When I received the generous gift of this Courtyard Tote Bag from Mackenzie-Childs, the first thing that came to my mind is that it will be a perfect "beach tote"!  It is the ideal size to hold all my beach gear, a good book as well as my lunch tote!

We have had over 100" of snow this winter so I am dreaming of warm weather, sunny days and summer cocktails!

The designers love interpreting MacKenzie-Childs style in new ways, and the all-weather weave of the Large Courtyard Tote proved the perfect challenge. The striking woven diamond pattern is dressed up with an accent tassel and a MacKenzie-Childs nameplate, all in cream and black with touches of gold. This tote is made of all-weather plicker, with a wooden tassel head with poly-rayon silk, and a gold-plated metal alloy with enamel accent. Count on this casual-chic tote as your go-to from beach weekend to farmers’ market to garden party and beyond.  The tote measures: 17" wide, 11" long handle, 13.5" tall

Would you like to win one of these tote bags?

Leave me a message in the comment area and tell me how you would use this fabulous tote and make sure there is a way for me to contact you (email addy) and I will randomly pick a winner next week.  

And if you don't win, you might want to purchase one HERE!

If you leave a comment as "anonymous", don't forget to leave your name and email addy!

and thank you to MacKenzie-Childs!
Contest ends Friday Feb 23rd

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Tuesday, February 13, 2018

What's black and white and red all over?....

Remember the old joke - what's black and white and 'red' all over?
The newspaper!!

Today it is a Valentine table setting for two....

...just John and I...

 ...a simple dinner of salad, pasta and rolls....

...I am using my "ice cream" dishes for salad tonight...

...and my 30 year old 'heart' dishes' for rolls...

...and plain red dishes for dinner.

I think red, white and black is one of my favorite color combos!

 Hoping that Valentine's Day brings you lots of love!

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Saturday, February 10, 2018

TEN on the 10th - Basil Salt and a St Patty's treat

While in Trader Joe's the other day I spied lush, fresh basil plants for $2.99, so I picked up a plant and made some Basil Salt!

I used sea salt and basil, the same measurement of both, 1/2 c. of each:

I  used my little food chopper to grind up the salt and basil...

….until it looked like this:

It will be moist… it has to be spread out on parchment paper on a cookie sheet:

The oven was preheated to 275'.

After 10 minutes it will look like this, so toss it around a bit and bake for 10 more minutes.

When it cools, it has to ground up again in the food chopper:

And here is what the basil salt will look like:

It makes a perfect little gift when stored in a pretty jar...

…or even in a little bag:

Basil salt is a perfect "finishing" salt for Caprese Salad, pasta or Marguerita Pizza.  It can add a nice flavor to a Bloody Mary if you "rim" the glass with it!

All for about $6 and I still have a pretty basil plant!

The same recipe can be used for Oregano Salt, Chive salt or Garlic Salt.  Experiment on your own and you might even come up with your own creation!


And with $4.00 left to spend I decided to buy a bag of Hershey Hugs, and make a few "3 leaf clovers" for St Pattys Day:

I cut little triangles out of cardstock and put 4 drops of glue on each to adhere three candies and a short piece of pipe cleaners....

...and created "3 leaf clovers" for St Patty's Day:

Here's an old Irish Blessing, written by one of my favorite artists, Susan Branch:

And that is what I created for under $10!!


Please visit the other participants in TEN on the 10th:

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Thursday, February 8, 2018

Love is in the air....Preparing for Valentines Day...

Valentines Day is the perfect excuse to brighten up my home after a gloomy winter.....'s a sign that winter is waning and that spring is right around the corner...

...I have set a dessert tray....

....ready for guests... enjoy an afternoon "pick me up"....

...and a possible "sugar high"...

...but now to decide what to serve...

...on these pretty heart shaped dessert dishes...

...well, of course lots of "hugs and kisses"....

...and maybe a tray of mini cookies...

...along with "fairy bites''''

...and mini cupcakes...

Do you do anything special for your loved ones on Valentines Day?

CONGRATS to Jenna @ The Painted Apron
WINNER of the Jess Hall's Serendipity Seasoned Salt

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