Winter foliage

We talked about using foliage from your yard back a few weeks ago. I cut berries from this foliage to use on my table for company the other night and this greenery was left over. I just stuck it in a simple clear vase.

Here’s a challenge! Go outside, find something green to cut and put it in a container placing it where you can enjoy it. We’d love to see a picture that we can share (peggy dot causby at yahoo dot com) or hear a description in the comments.

(photo by George Cavanaugh)

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Posted in Floral Arrangements, Plants and Gardens | 4 Comments

Pine columns and a reader’s comment

Pine Columns

These columns were made for my former home out of pine wood with molding at top and bottom. An artificial arrangement was displayed on them flanking each side of the entrance to a den; it was stunning.

I have always used them to hold a large plant. My choice is a Boston fern as that is my favorite inside plant through out the winter months. I happen to have wonderful filtered light in my breakfast room. The columns could also be used for a statue or pottery.

Here is a closeup shot to see the detail in case you’d like to try to have some made for your home:

A comment from a reader
A reader mentioned that the paint cloth used in the “saving the couch” post would look better if it was ironed.

A great point was made and this reader obviously has a keen eye. Mary (she is the homeowner) and I have strong feelings about ironing. I like ironed pieces especially my top sheet and my pillow cases; they even have a little starch. I also iron my husband’s pajamas (and all his shirts are ironed of course.) My mother always ironed her linens and when I look in my linen closet, it gives me a good feeling.

Mary, however, is horrified by this. She thinks ironing sheets and pajamas is a total waste of time. I’ve noticed she uses cloth napkins most of the time and they are ironed but I’m quite confident that she didn’t iron them!

When she read this comment, she laughed and said the drop cloth was for three kids and a pizza and there was no way she was going to iron it (it would be taken off as soon as the kids left anyway). Additionally, she only has a sorry little ironing board that folds down from a closet and it couldn’t support a heavy 9 x 12 canvas cloth if she tried. I even wondered if the finish on the fabric would ruin my good iron.

I noticed around the internet that a lot of people are using these drop cloths to decorate especially for window treatments. What do you think? Do you iron everything? Would you iron these drop cloths? Has anyone tried? How did it work? Are there any other solutions? For example, we wondered if steaming would work.

(photos by George Cavanaugh)

Posted in Accessories, Home Decorating | 8 Comments

A {heart} ministry

This is the day we are wanting to express our love especially to those very dear at heart. Mary (my brillant technical advisor ) and I want to extend love and help to those less fortunate. We have several missions in our town who are open to help the needy and serve a hot meal. We along with other men and ladies of our church are excited that “our” day fell on this special Monday. We do this once a month at “City of Refuge”. Happy Valentine’s Day to you and let us know if you had a special way of caring on this day.

Posted in Inspiration | 1 Comment

Take it to the top


This was a real eye catcher and a beautiful use of space between the ceiling and the top of a bookcase. The bookcase takes an entire wall in a very small room. We only chose to photograph the well placed unusual baskets. This is in my daughter-in-law’s house and they call it the “computer room” . With the two club chairs and a pretty pine chest (which we will show you another day), it is very tempting for lazy day reading with plenty of light coming from windows on both sides of the room.

(photo by George Cavanaugh)

Posted in Accessories | 1 Comment

Simple beauty

let the beauty of the LORD our God be upon us

Psalm 90:17

(photo by George Cavanaugh taken in Peggy’s living room)

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Setting the table for a dinner party

There is much to write about today. Clayton and I are having two couples over for dinner tonight. I love to set the table for a nice dinner and I start a day or two before the event. First, I played with a French country setting using our casual china.

but decided on this more formal setting.

Since Valentine’s Day is in the air, I loved the way these two papier mache love birds looked together.

I can’t remember where I found them; I picked them up a few years ago and they were very inexpensive. You can find instructions to make something similar at Oh So Crafty. The writer called her project a fail, but I thought her bird was charming. The berries were snipped from a Nandina plant in a friend’s yard.

We are having chicken breasts with leeks and mushrooms and basamati rice. I found this originally in Elizabeth Terry’s Savannah Seasons. This cookbook is full of recipes from the restaurant “Elizabeth’s on 37th” in Savannah. Everything we have tried from her book has been a hit and her recipes are easy to prepare. If you pick up this book, don’t miss both pie crust recipes!

Finally does anyone recognize the crystal pattern in the casual setting? Here’s a closer look at the detail. I can’t remember what it is!

(photos by George Cavanaugh)

Posted in Accessories, Dinner table | 9 Comments

An Italian lamp

This island divides my kitchen from the den. The lamp warms and brightens the white tile. I dressed the window with a plant to add more life and color. Another lamp is tucked under the kitchen cabinet to the left of the sink. If you remember the den, it is decorated in a traditional American style. The lamp adds an eclectic touch.

Tomorrow, Clayton and I are having two couples over for dinner so I’d like to show you how the table is decorated. Also, my blog will be moving to a new address so please look for that announcement soon!

(photo by George Cavanaugh)

Posted in Accessories, Home Decorating | 1 Comment

Come and sit a spell …

The first time Peggy saw my dining room, she pointed out that I could change the way it felt by pulling the chairs out slightly from the table.

Have a look and see for yourself! I always pushed the chairs under the table (weren’t we taught to do that in school?)

But pull them out a bit and look at the difference! Peggy says the chairs ask you to come and sit when they are pulled away from the table like this.

(photos by George Cavanaugh)

Posted in Home Decorating | 1 Comment

A country fireplace

Since we are all probably looking at our fireplaces more during this cold weather, here is another one from my daughter-in-law Carol’s house. This one is original with the house with no mantle and no brick or stone. It’s enhanced with the built-in bookcases on either side. The basket is filled with fresh magnolia leaves. Using a basket is a great idea as its contents can be changed with the season. She had it filled with pine cones and berries at Christmas. The sconces on each side add warmth. It makes a dramatic focal point in the room don’t you think?

(photo by George Cavanaugh)

Posted in Home Decorating | Tagged | 4 Comments

Making over a fireplace

My daughter Bliss bought an older house and was unhappy with the fireplace. The combination of older brick, beige wall to wall carpet and the brass screen dated this space. The windows were also bare. It made the room feel cold and she didn’t have any privacy. This before picture was taken while the house was on the market.

She greatly improved the space bringing the fireplace more into the room’s new decor. First she painted the walls and the fireplace to match the walls. She took out the carpet and installed hardwood floors. White blinds were added to windows. The fireplace was accessorized with plants and a painting. Finally she added a nice seagrass rug. It’s a working fireplace and there’s usually a fire burning brightly!

Do you have a fireplace you are proud of? Or do you have some tips you’d like to share in the comments? I’d love to see your pictures (my email address is on the contact page).

Posted in Home Decorating, Uncategorized | Tagged