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Ocean House in Rhode Island

Ocean House exteriorHappy Friday!  Are you looking forward to this holiday weekend? Perhaps you are making a trip to the beach. As much as I would like to, I’m afraid we are not traveling anywhere close to salt water this weekend.  But I do have a gorgeous hotel to share with you today.  Then at least we can take a virtual trip there.:)

Ocean House beachside exterior

This is the Ocean House Hotel in Watch Hill, Rhode Island.  Doesn’t it look like one of those grand hotels from the turn of the century?  In a way it is, and in a way it isn’t.  (You’re totally confused now, right??)  Well, it was a grand hotel at one time.  It opened in 1868, and it had 159 guest rooms.  People traveled from all over to stay at this beautiful place overlooking the Atlantic Ocean.

Ocean House living roomBut then somehow, over the 135 years that it was in operation, it became run down…too much to keep up, and the old beauty was closed in 2003.  Obviously, that was not the end of her story though.  Happily, in 2004 a plan was designed to totally recreate her.  Over a 5 year period, they took Ocean House apart and reused those old parts in a brand new building.  Even the rocks in the fireplace above were removed, numbered, and rebuilt into the one that you see in the hotel’s living room today. And would you believe the 247 windows from the former hotel are now in their original location in the new Ocean House?  (That was amazing to me.)

Ocean House hotelThe hotel has won several very prestigious awards over the years…Travel and Leisure’s #1 Top Resort in the U.S. last year and #5 in the world. Forbes ranked it among the top 10 beach resorts in the world.  The hotel has many amenities, including a spa and a number of restaurants.  I believe the one above is called The Bistro.

Wouldn’t you love to be dining at the table there by the window below?!

Ocean House restaurantThey continue the old hotel tradition of cabanas on the beach.

Ocean House beach cabanasThe suites in Ocean House are fabulous.
This is the Morgan Suite.

Morgan Suite living area

Ocean House stairway

Morgan Suite bath

Yes this is a suite.  Note the bunkbeds built in the wall there, and you can see a small view into the bedroom on the back wall.

Ocean House suite

Here is another one.

Ocean House accommodationBesides the rooms in the hotel itself, Ocean House offers villas and five “cottages” for rent as well.  (Some of these “cottages” are quite large with 6 bedrooms.) This is the 5 bedroom Salt Spray Farm.

Salt Spray Farm exterior

Salt Spray Farm interiorAnd this is Echo Lodge with 6 bedrooms for you and all your extended family.:)

Echo Lodge exterior

Echo Lodge living room

Echo Lodge bedroomThis bedroom is from the charming Old School Cottage.
(It is more my size with only 2 bedrooms.:))

Cottage bedroom

If you really want to go all out luxurious, you should stay in their 7 bedroom Windvale Cottage, complete with its own pool and poolhouse.  This “cottage” was built at the turn of the century and has been wonderfully restored.

Windvale exteriorsource

Love that clawfoot tub in the bathroom.:)

Windvale Cottage bathBeautiful living room.

Windvale Cottage living roomBut as lovely as all those cottages are, I still think the best place to be is back at Ocean House…

Ocean House hotel exterior

sitting on their porch, overlooking the Atlantic, and listening to the waves.

Ocean House porch


Today is my last last day of being a teacher.  I have found myself with tears in my eyes several times this week, so I know today will be bittersweet.  I just have to keep reminding myself how wonderful retirement is going to be.  (Thank you to those of you who keep reminding me of it in your comments.:))

Here’s to a great start to everyone’s Memorial Day weekend!
May we all find someplace special to relax and rejuvenate as the summer season begins.

Until next time…
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(All images (unless otherwise noted) are from the Ocean House website.)

Peggy Bryant - May 22, 2015 - 7:24 am

Congratulations on your retirement. As one door closes another one will open. I know with your amazing talent you will put your energy elsewhere. Have a wonderful holiday. Peggy

yarlette - May 22, 2015 - 7:35 am

The hotel is just beautiful. It would be a real treat to stay there. You find the best places. Congratulations on your retirement. I am sure it is bittersweet and that you will miss everyone but just think of the fun you will have. We love being retired. We stay so busy doing the things we enjoy. Not having to worry about schedules. Life is good and make the most of this phase of your life.

Paula from Holland - May 22, 2015 - 7:37 am

Dear Kelly, congrats on your retirement! And good luck with your new life. Ofcourse it is difficult to leave but there will be new adventures, just waiting for you around the corner ;-)) Paula

Emily - May 22, 2015 - 7:54 am

Kelly, have a wonderful last day at being a teacher at the school I know you will miss it and they will certainly miss you. Realize that you are just “changing your hat”. Thank you for sharing yourself and home through your blog. I have learned so much.

I wish you the very best!

Cheri - May 22, 2015 - 7:59 am

What a wonderful place Kelly. I am ready to pack my bags but unfortunately we are remodeling a bathroom and so a vacation is on hold. I love how you describe even the smallest of things that I would never have seen if not for you. Love those stairs in the first suite, they did a FANTASTIC job restoring this place.

Leslie Anne @ Fairhope Supply Co. - May 22, 2015 - 8:10 am

First of all, congratulations on your retirement. Even though I only taught school for a few years, it was hard when I stopped, and I cried the next year when I heard the school busses picking up the children. You’ve had a great career and I’m sure you’ve touched the lives of so many children in a fabulous and positive way. And now, on to new adventures!

As for this wonderful resort, I don’t even know where to begin! What an enormous thing of perfection! I have a friend who has been restoring old windows for a historic home in Georgia, and each one is a major job. Over 200 windows? WOW.

Angela - May 22, 2015 - 8:14 am

Congratulations Kelly, have a wonderful last day. Thanks for these pictures, what a beautiful place.

Louvina - May 22, 2015 - 9:04 am

Just gorgeous! I love each picture more than the one before!! Will go back and study each one on my iPad. Thinking of you on this the last day with your students! So excited for you–great adventures ahead!! I’m at ocean condo and have spied a little yellow and green bungalow 3 doors down that just came up for sale! SO– I’m calling about it!! :) cross your fingers !

Kim - May 22, 2015 - 9:21 am

Oh,my I would not want to ever leave this place. Just gorgeous. Congrats on the retirement and yes, I’m sure there will be tears today. Have a wonderful holiday weekend!

lynne@lynnesgiftsfromtheheart - May 22, 2015 - 9:23 am

Happy Retirement. fondly ~lynne~

Kim - May 22, 2015 - 9:29 am

Well, my visit will just be virtual. I checked their site to see if we could swing it in September, but seeing how the cheapest room is over $1200 a night that won’t be happening. Poo

Kaye Ann - May 22, 2015 - 9:55 am

Happy retirement……
Hoping for retirement next year.

Love the Ocean House!

Susan - May 22, 2015 - 10:33 am

You will enjoy your retirement. Having been a teacher myself, I know that you have earned this! If you find yourself missing the classroom, you can always go back and sub. Several of my friends do this and really enjoy it.

Sandra - May 22, 2015 - 10:38 am

Last day of school, first day of the rest of your life.
Hey! You can always sub!!!

Barbara H - May 22, 2015 - 12:25 pm

What a happy, bittersweet time for you, but congratulations. A big thank you on behalf of all the parents and children whose lives you touched. I am fortunate to live just 4 miles from the Ocean House in one of the most beautiful, unsung parts of the country. We are right on the Connecticut/Rhode Island border. Beautiful Mystic Seaport is ten miles in the other direction. In addition to Ocean House being the wonderful resort that it is, the owners have made the commitment to stay an important part of the community. Many local charities benefit from their support. I don’t have any affiliation with the hotel at all, other than to enjoy dining there occasionally and dreaming of a chance to stay there. By the way, Taylor Swift’s summer home is four doors down from the hotel, high on a bluff overlooking the Atlantic. I wish all of your readers could come here and enjoy the beautiful Rhode Island shore…it’s heaven.

Dawn - May 22, 2015 - 12:57 pm


This looks like a lovely place to vacation. I love the beach and vacation has to include water for me. I love the “cottage” with the pool behind it but I would want to see the ocean. I wish you all the best in your retirement. I know you will fill it up with wonderful things for us to see, enjoy and cook! I understand the bittersweet moments you are experiencing this week…we had three teachers retire this week too. There comes a time to move on and only each of us knows when that is for us. I am sure that you know yourself well enough to make the correct choice for you. We are here watching and waiting to see what you do next. We know your retirement from teaching is just the beginning of what you will do next! Congratulations!

Nan, Odessa, DE - May 22, 2015 - 1:13 pm

Bittersweet, yes. But a new season in your life.
Be open and enjoy it! You have earned this time.
Besides NO ONE ever stops teaching and learning.
Have a safe holiday and do make a memory!

kathy - May 22, 2015 - 1:57 pm

My favorite photo is the last one. I want to sit on that porch! How fitting that you would do a post on Rhode Island today. Katrina, Josie, and their husbands flew up there just yesterday!(Have fun, gfs!) And, my son’s girlfriend went for her first ever teaching job interview today. (She just graduated from Ole Miss.) And, it is YOUR last day at school! Congratulations!!! Kelly, you are going to miss teaching but you have so, so many talents and I am excited that you will most likely be blogging even more! Enjoy your summer and not ever having to go back!

Sandy - May 22, 2015 - 3:23 pm

Ok, I just wiped the tears from my eyes reading that it was your last day of teaching. Boy, that sure brought on an emotion and I don’t know where it came from. The 31st marks my third anniversary of my last day as a teacher. Luckily, I’m surrounded by my grandchildren who constantly ask questions and have introduced me to amazing games such as Mindcraft.
Congratulations, a new path in your life is ahead of you. Enjoy each step.

Mimi - May 22, 2015 - 3:34 pm

Congratulations on your retirement, Kelly! An exciting new chapter begins tomorrow… :-)

Garden, Home and Party - May 22, 2015 - 4:01 pm

Congratulations on your retirement, but I believe, with your talent, this is only the beginning of a new chapter. You will always be a teacher, as is evidenced by your educational posts…just not in a formal classroom setting.
This is one of the best places you’ve shared. I’m certain it’s out of my price range, that is the beauty of your virtual tours. I can appreciate the wonder of such a hotel without going into debt to experience it! :-)
Enjoy your weekend.

Sandy - May 22, 2015 - 4:40 pm

I retired last year after 31 years in the classroom. Letting go is definitely a process. I felt out of place for awhile, but I must say I am loving it now. Just takes time to get in a new routine.

Becky in 'Bama - May 22, 2015 - 5:36 pm

Jealous on two levels: that I will never get to go to that hotel..too much cha-ching for my budget, but thanks for the virtual tour. Heavenly. Second level of jealousy: you’re retiring! I’m sure your principal is as teary-eyed as you. Reading between the lines of your posts and seeing your creativity I’d say that your school is going to miss you!! Congratulations and enjoy your new freedom. Unfortunately (although I am FORTUNATELY employed) I’ll not see retirement until age 68 – but don’t want to rush my life away. Keep up the great blog; it’s a real treat to the eyes and a unique way for some of us to see the world (in pictures). Happy summer!

Vicki - May 22, 2015 - 5:46 pm

If you think you are emotional about retiring then I hate to know what your administration is feeling! If you need something to fill all that free time just let me know…. I have 5 more years until I retire (late starter) and my to do list has plenty on it for the both of us! Congrats!

Anne from Atlanta - May 22, 2015 - 6:13 pm

Best wishes for your retirement! I know it will be wonderful to have the time to do the things you want to do! You can be proud of all you accomplished as a teacher and now go on to do many more things. I hope this wonderful blog will be a part of your retirement for many years to come. Thanks for another great post! xoxo, Anne

Marianne in Mo. - May 22, 2015 - 6:24 pm

Best wishes on your retirement! I know you will enjoy your leisure time, and remember, if you get bored, I’m sure you can volunteer!

This post is lovely. That view – awesome! But I’m more the Tybee Cottage type.
Have you ever seen Mystic Conn.? A darling sea town. We visited there many years ago, and saw the restaurant where the movie Mystic Pizza was filmed. I could easily live there!
Happy Memorial day! We will be planting a shrub bed for my brother in law’s birthday gift this weekend!

Ellen - May 22, 2015 - 7:26 pm

Cheers to your fantastic retirement! Loved seeing this grand hotel, and it looks like just the place to unwind.

A Graduation Weekend

graduation party centerpieceWhat a fun weekend we’ve had here!  I mentioned to you on Saturday that we were so happy that our Disney daughter had made it home from her internship at Walt Disney World.  She arrived just in time for her boyfriend’s college graduation.


 So we spent Saturday afternoon watching a graduation ceremony.

graduation in the arena

After 3 hours of waiting, his name was called, and he received his diploma.:)


Later that night, the graduate and almost all of his family came over for dessert and coffee. My mother made a pound cake for us, and we enjoyed it with fresh peaches, strawberries, blackberries and whipped cream.  My mother-in-law baked Swedish gingerbread for us, (recipe here) and I prepared apples and Heath Brickle dip (recipe here.) You can’t see it in the photo because it’s behind the chalkboard. (And yes, I know.  I also made it a couple of weeks ago, but it is sooo good.:))

graduation dessert party table(Sorry for the weird lighting.  I hate taking photos at night!)

We had a little more than coffee to drink.:)

graduation dessert party drinksThe graduate’s family returned home, and he returned to the college to pack up, but the next morning he was back at our house…this time for a graduation lunch.  (I did not even think of the dessert party until Saturday morning, but I had been planning this lunch for awhile.)  We really had to sneak around to get everything set up upstairs without our daughter or her boyfriend knowing we were doing it.  (I wanted it to be a surprise.)  I had even set the table in our dining area by the kitchen as if we were eating in there to throw them off.:)

graduation lunchWe had our traditional grilled steaks, baked potatoes, fresh bread, our daughter’s favorite salad – the romaine and ramen one, (recipe here) and leftover shortcake for dessert.  My husband grilled the steaks.  I baked the potatoes and bread, and our daughter and her boyfriend prepared the salad.  I was able to sneak the potatoes upstairs in a thermal insulated bag, and my husband managed to get the steaks (wrapped in aluminum foil) up there too without anyone seeing him.  So when they finished making the salad, our daughter started to carry it to the table and asked, “Where’s all the food??”  That’s when we told them to go upstairs.  It was a fun surprise.:)

graduation party decorI can’t seem to break away from using school decor for graduation parties.  It just seems to work so well. (But I will have to come up with something different for our daughter’s graduation next year…I think I’ve used the theme enough.:))

graduation lunch table

The school’s colors are black and orange- so that was my color scheme.  I changed out the pillow covers to orange ones, and our black and white drapes worked well with all the black and orange balloons. (Our middle son was home for the weekend, and thank goodness he was able to make a secret run for a new helium tank!)

graduation lunch balloonsWe had a great time and were all totally stuffed when we finished.  I am going to really have to think hard to come up with an idea for our daughter’s graduation party.

chalkboardAt least I have a year to plan for it.:)

Thank you again for stopping in for a visit here.  Fingers crossed, I will have some pretty houses for you to see this week…our last crazy week of school!

Until next time…

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Sheena - May 17, 2015 - 10:50 pm

Hi Kelly,
All these recipes look delicious! I’m hoping to make the Brickle dip for Memorial Day. Can you tell me how many ounces of pineapple juice go into this? Thank you!

Louvina - May 17, 2015 - 11:07 pm

What a great finale to a fabulous fun weekend! Mercy, Wonder Woman! How do you do ALL you do?! LOVE has a lot to do with it, right!! PS what a cute couple!! Enjoyed seeing it and yea for orange and black– my school colors back in Ky! :)

Ruth - May 17, 2015 - 11:11 pm

What a gorgeous young couple! Oh, to be young and attractive, with your whole life ahead of you, a supportive family behind you, and so much to celebrate!

Decorations and menu looked great — I don’t think anyone would be disappointed with a rerun of that a year from now… or a WEEK from now, for YOUR “graduation”!

Are those Coke “grad” bottles the real thing (sorry, I truly did not notice that pun until it was on the page), or did you make those labels? Haven’t seen those here, but what a fabulous idea!

Ellen Martin - May 17, 2015 - 11:31 pm

Two wonderful, colorful celebrations for your cute daughter’s handsome boyfriend’s graduation! I agree…….how do you manage your blog, while having such fun, well done parties and teaching school? You’re amazing and we, your readers, are the beneficiaries of your hard work. Thanks for the glimpse into your family’s special occasion celebration.

Donnamae - May 18, 2015 - 12:00 am

Oh…what fun…a surprise party! Great decorations! What a fun year you’re going to have planning your daughters party! 😉

Kathy - May 18, 2015 - 12:55 am

Oh, wow! How fun! And, how sweet of you to have a graduation party for your daughter’s bf. What a beautiful couple! (Have they dated a long time?) We went to my son’s precious gf’s graduation party last night and it was so much fun…wonderful friends, decorations and food. (She graduated from Ole Miss.) Kelly, you are really a Wonder Woman. I can’t believe you are doing all of this with the end of school. I am sure Louvina is right, love has a lot to do with it. I have been away and am just catching up on several of your posts. Are you doing an end of your teaching career post? You are not going to believe how much you love retirement.

Frances in England - May 18, 2015 - 5:46 am

So sweet! Congratulations Sean, and also Kelly for what sounds like a wonderful surprise. I too cannot see anyone objecting to a theme ‘re-run’, but on the other hand I look forward to seeing what you come up with!!

Cindy - May 18, 2015 - 7:10 am

Such a great job! I love your theme parties.
Enjoy your last week of school!!! It will really hit you next school year when the buses start rolling out and you don’t have to.
Congrats to you and Sean, Cindy
PS I know you are glad to have you daughter home.

Kris {Driven by Decor} - May 18, 2015 - 8:39 am

Congratulations – looks like so much fun! Can I tell you how much I love your party table decor – the stack of ribbon bound books and globe are perfect!

Katrina - May 18, 2015 - 8:56 am

I agree with Kathy and Louvina…… You are a Wonder Woman! Congrats to your daughter’s bf! Your food looks delish as always!
We had a big high school graduation weekend in Memphis for my nephew. His mom also had the dessert party idea! In addition to graduation, they were also celebrating the first year of a brand new school system! Since my brother in law is on the school board my sister in law had a huge champagne/ dessert celebration party! The graduates all got ginger ale.. Ha ha! She made all the luscious desserts except for the main cake which came from her favorite bakery, Oh My Ganache. Don’t you love that name. It had pics of cute children painted all around the side and the symbol of their school system painted on the top.
Thank goodness for big celebrations with the ones we love….. Makes life so special!

Garden, Home and Party - May 18, 2015 - 9:10 am

What a cute theme for a graduate. I love the black globe and the black and orange spots of color. Your daughter and her boyfriend are so cute.

How exciting to have a year to plan your daughter’s graduation celebration, I can’t wait. You always surprise and delight!

Vicki {If It Were Mine} - May 18, 2015 - 11:37 am

Love all those little touches and how you make it look so effortless. You have a good eye that keeps your themes from being too themey- just pulled together and always so charming!
Enjoy this week!

Gina - May 18, 2015 - 1:09 pm

What a wonderful weekend! I think you could go into event/party planning. 😉 :) You have a gift. I’m sure you enjoy it too. Your daughter is so lovely. Enjoy your summer with her. :)

Dawn - May 18, 2015 - 2:43 pm

I love how you can change out a few accessories and easily customize your colors to match the celebration! I also can’t wait to try the Heath brickle dip! Yummy!

Tricia - May 18, 2015 - 7:01 pm

Kelly, what a delight to read your posts. Thank you for including us in your wonderful family celebrations!

Barbara P from Ma - May 18, 2015 - 9:02 pm

Sounds like a busy but wonderful weekend! As usual, your decorations and food look perfectly fabulous! Definitely want to try some of those recipes!

Cindy - May 19, 2015 - 1:37 pm

What a wonderful surprise graduation party! Your daughter and her boyfriend are adorable.
I have been reading your blog from the beginning. I love your decorating and party ideas. I don’t know how you do all that you do and teach school. I taught school for thirty years and retired from teaching twelve years ago. I have a part-time job as an adjunct professor at a community college. You will love retirement!

christi in ma - May 19, 2015 - 2:15 pm

looks like a great party, Kelly! The school colors is a perfect theme/decorating motif.

I clicked through to your salad recipe and saw you made Ina’s blondies with fall mix M&Ms. They’ll be perfect with red, white and blue M&Ms for our Relay for Life team, the Stars & Stripes.

Design Chic - May 20, 2015 - 8:42 am

What an adorable couple and know you are thrilled to have your daughter home and that Sean is excited to have reached this milestone in his life! The party looks amazing as always. Just the right touches!

Debra - May 20, 2015 - 12:44 pm

Your daughter and boyfriend are too cute! How sweet of you to have a celebration or him. Always some kind of doings with Kelly and her gang! You should just about be approaching your retirement. Can’t wait to read of your farewell. The leaving of so many years of such hard work and devotion, to a new life full of new adventures…. :) P. S. Just asking too, how many oz. on the pineapple juice for your Heath brickle dip recipe. Will have to try it. Can’t believe Memorial Day is almost here.

phyllis - May 20, 2015 - 9:30 pm

Both of them have adorable faces!

Shirley@Housepitality Designsi - May 21, 2015 - 9:55 am

Congrats to Sean and glad that there was a great surprise in that wonderful room so beautifully decorated for the occasion. Loved the dessert table you served the night before too!…I am sure you are counting down the days for retirement!

Caroline Mudd - May 21, 2015 - 6:37 pm

I love all of the care you put into everything you do! I really enjoy your blog!!

Dawn - May 21, 2015 - 9:44 pm


You win Mom of the year in my book! Wow! What great parties and surprises! Could you do a Disney themed Party for your daughter next year? Kind of like the Mickey mouse one you did recently just expanded a bit or more girlie? Thanks for sharing! Take care.

Talk of the Weekend #22

Bridgehampton homesource

Happy almost-summer-vacation weekend!  We are down to our last week of school, and things are in their craziest and busiest of times in the school year.  So I am sending you this post as quickly as I can, and then I am off to get some desserts together.

The living area above and dining area below came from the same home.  Take a peek at it in the links below the photos.


Do you remember my ugly lemon cake from our Mother’s Day post?

Southern Lemon Cheese CakeI found a recipe for it here.

lemon cheese

And another recipe here, but they frost it with a 7 minute frosting in this one.

Smitten Kitchen lemon

If you don’t want to go through all the trouble of making one and you happen to live in Alabama, Florida, or Mississippi, you can actually purchase a 7 layer beauty here.

If you have plans for any summer entertaining this year, this post if full of great tips – like cooking large amounts of corn on the cob in a cooler!

cooking corn in a

I found an interesting place to stay if you happen to be vacationing in the Seattle area.  You can peruse Treehouse Point here.  They have quite a few treehouses on the property.


Love this house I ran across the other day.  You might want to check out several of this architect’s projects on his website.


Ken Linsteadt

Here is another pretty house for you to drool over…this time from Traditional Home’s website.

Southampton House

Southampton house

We have a graduation ceremony to attend today and then a small get-together for desserts here tonight…. nothing major.:) I thought this themed Sail Away party was cute for a graduation celebration…lots of clever and creative ideas! See what you think…

Sail away graduation

Our Disney daughter made it home yesterday, (yay!) and a sweet reader sent me flowers to celebrate daughter’s homecoming and my upcoming retirement.:)(And they go with all the lemon stuff!)


I love Disney music, and I ran across this video a month or so ago.  It features the very talented Peter Hollens in a duet singing a medley of some of my favorite Disney theme songs.  Well… recently I was browsing online to see if the Piano Guys had any new videos out.  And yes they do.:) Imagine my surprise when I saw that the new one features…Peter Hollens!

This new video is beautiful, the words meaningful, and the story behind it is powerful.  I hope you enjoy.

Thank you for stopping by my friends.  I hope your weekend is wonderful.:)

Until next time…

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Nancy - May 16, 2015 - 11:21 am

What a great white kitchen, it’s just beautiful! I’m crazy about your decor for the graduation party, just too cute and perfect! Okay, must tell you, I’ve been looking at your home and oh my goodness, it’s awesome! Everything in it is just fabulous!

Enjoy your day and have fun at the party!


Susan - May 16, 2015 - 11:33 am

Oh, what a beautiful duet! Thank you for including it in your post. Beautiful music soothes the soul~

Debra - May 16, 2015 - 11:45 am

I’ll take the home you featured from Traditional Home. The Hamptons, ……Oh the Hamptons! Some of the décor was a bit modern, for my liking. I loved the kitchen, bedrooms and of course that pool area. Sigh! Overcast through the weekend here, but hope to get out anyway. A vintage shop, to checking out vendors at the one day event, called Gardenology in Geneva. Have a great weekend. That bouquet was so pretty. How sweet.

Gracia @ Gracious Offering - May 16, 2015 - 12:16 pm

Kelly, wonderful house eye candy once again! I have a severe case of kitchen envy, for sure! Loved the fun link to the tree houses in our Seattle area. My son would love to stay there. The newest video with the Piano Guys was so beautiful! I imagine the ending of this school year is bittersweet for you…retirement after years of teaching. I’m sure you will enjoy the new chapter in your life though! Have a great weekend!

Garden, Home and Party - May 16, 2015 - 5:11 pm

I love, love, love each and every kitchen here! I will enjoy checking the links you’ve given us. We have a quiet weekend and believe it or not, today’s high is 61 degrees! Mother Nature decided we deserved a little of the winter weather she withheld as she was so busy with her delivery on the east coast. :-) I am going to put a fire in the fireplace and curl up with my computer and a few magazines.
Enjoy your day…how nice to have your Disney daughter home…I’m sure she loves that new label. :-)

Louvina - May 16, 2015 - 8:17 pm

Another refreshing post– on the run!:) love white kitchens, tree houses and that trick with corn on the cob really works when serving large groups! And any left overs can be cut off and frozen for later! So happy your daughter got home safely and hope she gets to stay for awhile or will be returning soon for a nice summer with her retired mama!:) fun times ahead!

Leslie Anne @ Fairhope Supply Co. - May 16, 2015 - 9:54 pm

Oh— My — Gracious!!! I took one look at the lemon cake from Heather PJ and instantly knew it had to be the same recipe as my grandmother’s “Cheese Cake” which has absolutely no cheese in it, but is lemon flavored. I clicked over to Heather’s site and sure enough, not only is it the same cake, but she explained it was called ‘cheese” cake because everyone thought it looked like a big wheel of cheese!
The funny thing is, is how regional it is. No one has ever heard of it, but Heather is from Andalusia, AL and my Grandmother was from within 30-40 miles from there in DeFuniak Springs, FL!
Such a small world, and now I know how my family’s “Cheese Cake” got it’s name!
Thanks for the info, and good luck with the last crazy week of school.

Dawn - May 17, 2015 - 11:26 am


Those house pictures are all nice, bright spaces. I always thing a doggie in the picture takes a house to a home for me. I do love dogs though. I am so glad that your daughter made it home safely. The desserts graduation celebration you hosted sounds super fun! I hope all went well. Good luck with your last week of school. It is our last week of school as well. Craziness and celebration all the same time. Thanks for sharing! Take care.


LJ - May 17, 2015 - 6:27 pm

Who would’ve thought…corn in a cooler! With every visit to your site I learn something new.

Paula B. - May 18, 2015 - 9:35 am

Beautiful music, lovely flowers. I am thinking that this is your very last “end of the school year”? With graduations and your kids going in so many directions this must be a busy yet bittersweet time. Enjoy, hold fast to the wonderful memories you are making. Good luck!

christi in ma - May 18, 2015 - 12:42 pm

Smitten Kitchen recipes are foolproof. She and Ina Garten are my go to for excellent recipes that become family favorites. So definitely try her version of lemon layer cake. The s’mores cake in her cookbook is wonderful too.

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