Time for Strawberries – I have ideas!

Strawberries have been fabulous this year, despite some local crops having a hard time because of the weather we had a while back. Ugh, so much work goes into planting, planning, etc – I have some recipes that I’ve shared in the past for when strawberry season is in full swing. Take advantage of the good ones while you can. If strawberries are grown near you, try to support the locals!

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Cottage House Mini House Plan by Prim Haus!

Cottage House Mini (House plan by Prim Haus)

We recently took a little trip to the mountains. The weather was spectacular, the mountains gorgeous – the Great Smoky Mountain National Park – is a stunning array of mountains, trails, peaks and valleys. These mountains are called the Smokies because of the morning fog that seems to always be there – which is stunning to watch. While we were there, amidst fresh air, the cleanest water ever, solitude, and beauty galore, we could not help but think how nice it would be to live there. To find a piece of property with a view and build a home that would fit into the landscape and not stand out. Prim Haus immediately came to mind – I think I found the perfect plan…

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Avocado Toast with Greens and a Sunny Side Up Egg!

I have always admired the creative ability really good chefs have. They can take a mundane meal and make it over the top, WOW! Have you had a meal somewhere special and were completely blown away by it? The taste, look, texture – everything about it was perfection. Now mine doesn’t look anywhere near the version of the Chef at The Swag – but I tried, and let me tell you, this is darn good! I made this three mornings in a row. It really is perfect for breakfast, lunch or dinner. The first day took me a little longer, but after I had my swing down, it went much faster. Of course I had enough pans/dishes to have served Thanksgiving Dinner, but that’s another story…

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Celebrating Memorial Day…

Memorial Day – a day to honor those who lost their lives in the ultimate sacrifice. Defending our freedom. So, it’s hard to say “Happy” Memorial Day – this is generally a day of BBQ, gatherings and good times, but while celebrating, please do take a moment to honor those who lost their lives while defending us. I will be thinking of them and their family and friends… 🇺🇸

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Forest Bathing 101: just. breathe.

Waynesville, North Carolina

I love a misty/foggy day, especially when it’s relatively cool outside. We recently spent a few days in Waynesville, NC – where we spent some much needed time away from devices and pretty much every other distraction. This photo captures the serene beauty of the day. No sunshine. #woohoo A nice thick fog blanketed pretty much everything. There was mist at times and a short thunderstorm one evening 💛- we fell asleep listening to the rain. #perfection What a treat! There is scientific evidence to prove that forest bathing is good for you… (Click to read the article).

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Rain or Shine, Sleet or Hail…

View from Outdoor Porch at The Swag

Rain or shine, sleet or hail (or even snow!!) – some places we visit are so special it really doesn’t matter what the weather is.- each has its own appeal. Our last trip to the mountains had a good bit of fog and it was lovely! I love cool weather (yet live in South Carolina) – the difference in temperatures between Charleston and Waynesville is mind blowing – especially for a 4.5 hour drive. I see why so many people love to visit the mountains. Of course the fog lifted and the mountains were glorious – what a treat!

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Storing Cilantro in the Refrigerator – the easy way!

Storing cilantro in the refrigerator so it will last!

Storing Cilantro in the refrigerator is no big deal, but if you want it to last – it becomes a deal. I love to use Cilantro in a marinade for grilled chicken (which is even tasty cold the next day!) – but I also love it in a brown rice bowl with homemade guacamole, black beans, homemade pico, a squeeze of lime and a sprinkle of pepper jack cheese. It’s also good in your breakfast wrap (corn tortilla, cooked egg, pepper jack, a spoonful of leftover black beans and a sprinkle of cilantro). #whoanellie!

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Jessica Lee Ives | Light Shapes Life Show at the Lupine Gallery (Monhegan, ME)!

Light, Water, Magnetism by Jessica Lee Ives, Oil, 40″ x 60″

Jessica Lee Ives. I love how she’s able to portray her subjects in the water. Whether it’s floating, jumping, diving – the view from underwater is magnificent. Jessica captures her subjects well, the ripple of the water, the COLOR of the water, the light reflecting off of the water – all are difficult, yet Jessica masters each so well.

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Happiness continued….

To me flowers = happiness. Imagine my surprise when I stepped out of the dentist’s office to find a bevy of beautiful flowers. Woot, woot! #miniphotoshoot What brings a smile to me will bring a smile to another, so here’s your smile for the day. I don’t know what type of plant it is, but the color (and the combination of plants/flowers) was beautiful. Unexpected for sure. Don’t you love that?

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A reminder to get outside…

An accidental iPhone image = a good reminder for me to get out and walk (or do whatever to stay active). Nothing is off the table. For instance, I’m a big sweeper. I love to sweep. I’m outside, it clears my mind and it’s rewarding – we have a big area to sweep, especially with constantly falling leaves/berries/blooms/squiggles/acorns/you name it. Another way to spend the summer is gardening (or in my case trying to keep mondo grass from taking over a path) – the stuff grows like crazy…

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A GREAT Salad is easier than you think!

Are you one who thinks that a good salad is a lot of work? It may be easier than you think. Other than the washing and the chopping – you’re done. No stove to use, no oven heating up the kitchen – just a bowl of deliciousness awaiting you after you assemble and let sit in the fridge to chill for a short time. Sometimes unexpected ingredients are a nice twist…

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It’s Geranium Time!!

Flowers in Charleston, SC are plentiful right now. The colors delight the eye and the scent, ooooh, makes me so happy. People have been happily planting for some time now. Garden centers are packed (especially on weekends!) The geraniums are gorgeous and come in so many beautiful colors! I’ve always loved the geranium colors like salmon and light pink – in this image the blooms look red, but they’re more of a fiery fuchsia, which stands out nicely.

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