Christy — by Catherine Marshall

This is one of my favorite books.  Perhaps you've read it.  Or maybe you're more familiar with the dramatic 1994 made-for-TV movie and TV series which followed.  Here's the basic story line as printed on the back cover of my copy of Christy ...   January 1912. A train winds through the snowy vastness of the Smokies, carrying young Christy Huddleston toward a new life in the mountain hamlet of Cutter Gap.  There, as the teacher at a mission school, she will come to know and care for the wild highland people with their fierce pride, terrible poverty, dark superstitions ... and desire for beauty and truth. In a culture with its own code of ethics, where moonshine is the economic backbone and blood feuds are a way of life, Christy's ... Keep Reading...

New Face in Blogland

One of the reasons I love to look at tablescapes in Blogland is that I enjoy seeing different interpretations of the same theme. For the past several weeks, most of us have done at least one Autumn-themed tablescape centered around leaves, warm colors, and cozy textures. Some of us, myself included, have done several -- and will do even more between now and Thanksgiving. My friend, Lisa, enjoys doing tablescapes, but she's never shared one in Blogland ... until today!  I invited her to show us what's on her table this week. (She's so organized she keeps one table "set" virtually all the time.) I've really enjoyed seeing the "pretties" she decorates with at this time of year -- and I think you will, too!  Be sure to notice ... Keep Reading...

A Piece of Home …

It was late at night when I found my inspiration. Do you see it sitting on the bookshelf "guarding" my wedding and etiquette books ... and old issues of Victoria magazine?   I think of this figurine as "Mom's doves" because when I was a young girl, my sister and brother and I bought one exactly like this for her for Mother's Day. Years later, Mother found the same figurine -- and bought three of them. She gave one to each of us children when we married. Sort of a "piece of home" that we took into our future ....   Saturday is Mom's birthday, and I'm using "her" dove figurine as the centerpiece of a special tablescape I'm doing just for her. (Come closer ... I'll let you peek.)   I chose Noritake's "Bluedawn" ... Keep Reading...

Watching the Leaves Turn

Everyone must take time to sit and watch the leaves turn. ~Elizabeth Lawrence, author of A Southern Garden   Through the wavy old glass in my windows, I've been watching the leaves turn ...   ... but I can't look out the window all day, so I decided to bring some in and share them with you.   Today's tablescape began with the leaves -- and this old wool runner I found recently in an auction box. I love it!  There are patches all over, but it seems someone treasured it enough to want to keep it around. Seriously ... it appears to have been around a long time.   Wood is one of my favorite decorating elements for Autumn tablescapes, so I started with my bamboo placemats then added these wood-look ... Keep Reading...

From Blah to Beautiful

My all-time favorite cleaner for vintage linens ... To purchase Restoration, go here. * * * * * I'm linking to these great blog parties ... Metamorphosis Monday at Between Naps on the Porch Mosaic Monday at Little Red House Blue Monday at Smiling SallyThanks for stopping by. I hope you have a wonderful week! ... Keep Reading...

C is for Cookbook … and Cancer … and Courage

You expect to see red, don't you? But it's pink ... red faded to pink. This cookbook's been around awhile.   Were the inside pages always pink? I wonder ...   This cookbook is one of my "treasures" because it belonged to my Grandma -- and boy could she cook! I especially loved her divinity and pecan rolls. (Does anybody see a "sweet" pattern there?)   I was very fortunate to know my Grandma. She had breast cancer when my Dad was just a young boy, but she survived it! That wasn't very common back in the late '40s. Things were different then, and cancer was a "whispered" topic if spoken of at all. Several years after receiving her shocking diagnosis, Grandma wrote an article for Home Life magazine entitled "Should a ... Keep Reading...

Rustic Elegance

Interior design professionals and DIY designers alike are attracted to the beautiful plumage of the ring-necked pheasant.   This species of pheasant appeared in the U.S. as early as 1773, but it wasn't until 1881 when 100 pairs of Chinese ring-necked pheasants were released in the Willamette Valley of Oregon that their population thrived. They were then propagated and introduced throughout the country wherever there was a suitable habitat. Though found elsewhere, pheasants are especially well-established as game birds in Oklahoma, Missouri, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas, California, Utah, Montana, and Wyoming. It was a pheasant hunt several years ago that resulted in my sweet husband providing this ... Keep Reading...

Asian Influence

From my earliest memories, the tea set in the center photo has been in my parents' home.  My Dad gave it to my Mother. There is something about Asian design that my Daddy really likes.  And Mom?  She has a great love for the Asian people, but she just isn't drawn to the design.  In fact, there is very little of the influence in their home.  Maybe only the tea set ...  :-) But today is my Dad's birthday, and I thought he might like a "dose" of beautiful Asian design. (Mom or Sister -- you'll have to tell him he made the blog so he'll see this!) Some of the pieces are mine, and I would never part with them -- particularly the bowl in the bottom center photo which was a wedding present.  ... Keep Reading...

Falling for Wood

A few weeks ago I showed you the kinds of elements I like to use to bring warmth and texture to my Fall decorating.  (If you missed it and want to read the post, click here.)  One of the elements I mentioned was POTTERY, and I've already done a pottery-focused tablescape here.   Today's tablescape focuses on another of my "foundations" of Fall decorating.  This time it's WOOD.  Once again, you might be surprised to see that I'm using "non-traditional" colors for my Fall tablescape.  Let's see if it works ...   I began with my inspiration piece -- a RUG with great texture -- and laid it on top of an eggplant-colored tablecloth. (Purple is a wonderful color for Fall decorating! Try adding a touch of it to your ... Keep Reading...

"Shop the Yard" Centerpiece

Anyone who does very many tablescapes knows that eventually you end up "shopping the house" for items to add to your tablescapes.  True?  You just go around your house and look for things that will either give a focal point -- or "filler" -- to your tablescape.  (Isn't it fun when the creative juices start flowing?!!!) Today, I'm going to show you the result of "shopping the YARD" for this week's tablescape. I knew I wanted to use this wooden pedestal bowl for my centerpiece ...   ... and I wanted to end up with this basic shape.   A dear friend who owns From The Garden Floral Events taught me how to make it happen ... Begin with a block of Oasis floral foam -- then soak it in water.    Next ... Keep Reading...

Personal Metamorphosis: 50th Birthday

I did it.  Last week, I reached the half century mark.  Overnight I went from being "forty-something" to being a 50-year-old woman ... and it didn't hurt one bit!  Quite honestly, the transformation began to take place a few years ago when I was shopping in a cute little boutique store and saw a plaque.  I am usually not at all attracted to resin plaques, but this one got me.  It was The ABCs of Ageing Gracefully.  Since that day, I've seen it many places, but at that moment, the words were brand new to me.  As I read them, I made a commitment to do just that -- age gracefully!   I bought the plaque and hung it just inside the entrance to our master bathroom.  I wanted to be sure I would see it every day ... so I would be ... Keep Reading...

Early Halloween Tablescape

I'm going to tell you something I've told very few people...   I'm not crazy about Halloween. (There, I've said it!) There's no particular reason.   I love decorating for Fall, but Halloween... I just never got into it that much.   I have fond memories of Halloween from my own childhood -- especially the year I was Casper the Friendly Ghost! -- and when my daughters were young, I made a big deal of dressing them up and trick-or-treating at friends' houses.   I put festive Halloween window clings on the windows and mirrors so they could enjoy them.   We carved Jack-O-Lanterns.  Beyond that -- not much.   ... Well, that's not quite true. There was one other thing I did -- faithfully... ... Keep Reading...