Monthly Archives: November 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

I’m spending the day doing prep work for Thanksgiving: cleaning the apartment, washing linens, arranging fresh flowers. After weeks of spray-painting pumpkins, buying & engraving napkin rings, and shopping for candles, chargers, & linens, the table is finally ready. As I’m setting all of this up, kitty and I have the window open to enjoy this unseasonably warm day.


I am so very thankful for my health, husband, family, friends, career, kitty, and the life that we live here in Denver. I had no idea how amazing this journey would be when I set out in the summer of 1998 to seek my dreams. I love that this holiday reminds us to stop for a second and be thankful for this moment in our lives. It reminds me of one of my favorite quotes:

“Now and then it’s good to pause in our pursuit of happiness and just be happy.”

– Guillaume Apollinaire

Wishing all of you a very lovely holiday!


Thanksgiving Preparations

I decided several weeks ago that my Thanksgiving table was going to be primarily robin’s egg blue with copper, pumpkin, brown, and peach. I’ve been slowly adding to the tablescape through inexpensive purchases at World Market, eBay, Etsy, and Target, adding ideas to my Pinterest Blue Thanksgiving board.

When I saw this picture in the November issue of Southern Living, I immediately fell in love with the idea of personalizing a permanent table item with family member’s names. I also loved how inexpensive the ideas was! (I also adored the Francis I silver, but that’s a post for another time.)

southern living pic

I decided, instead of glasses, to get pewter napkin rings engraved. I found a decent set of four W.M. Rogers on Etsy for $13. Farmer’s Trophies and Engraving in Cherry Creek (Denver) came highly recommended and did a great job for only $8 per ring.

So, for a grand total of $45, I now have permanent pewter napkin rings engraved with family members’ names. They look lovely!

rings detail

place setting

The Salon!


Willi’s Wine Bar poster


Map of Paris


Hardware can make all the difference

While I loved the price of our Ikea china cabinet, it had a “Store-Bought 2011” look for which I didn’t care. I faintly recalled a dresser or cabinet of Mama Chris’ that had these great round recessed-ring pulls.

After trips to Home Depot, Great Indoors, Restoration Hardware, and World Market, I finally found ones like I remembered at

Here’s the before picture:


Here’s an “after” pic:


And here’s a detail:


From broke to Baroque

When I moved to Denver in 1998, I was a fourth year teacher struggling to make ends meet. I had a fabulous apartment on Capitol Hill, however, built in 1918 with hardwood floors, a view of the park, and close to downtown. As I set up my new place, I allowed myself to “splurge” on a desk from Target for about $30.

old desk

Years later, the desk is still simple and functional, but the plain pine was beginning to bore me. Inspired by our recent visit to Paris, I decided to give it a Baroque make-over with black lacquer paint, a handle for the drawer, and touches of gold leaf. I LOVE the results!

new desk

Now to find an inexpensive Louis XIV chair…


Love, love, love the new coffee table/bench. Perhaps we need two?