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It’s Blog Birthday Time!

Talk of the House birthday cupcake

Time to celebrate!!  On April 9, Talk of the House turned 3 years old – a mere toddler in blogland.:) (I’m only a week late for the birthday celebration!:() I decided to wait to do this recap post until we were finished touring the town of Celebration. So now that we are “back home” here on the blog, perhaps you will allow me to do a little rerun of what has gone on here the past 12 months.  Let’s take a look back…

April 2014 Talk of the HouseLast April we did a lot of traveling beginning with Meat ‘n Greet and the town of Newnan.  Then we toured two Southern Living Idea Houses in Senoia, Georgia.  Our Spring Break that month on Tybee Island brought posts on Mary Kay Andrews’ Breeze Inn, 3 posts on her fabulous beach house, Ebbtide, a visit to Savannah, Paula Deen’s restaurant and homes, and a look at the Tybee Island sites that were featured in the movie, The Last Song. Finally, back home we decorated the house for Easter.

May 2014 Talk of the HouseMay began with the final Tybee Island post – this one on Jane Coslick and all her darling beach cottages.  That was followed by a study of equestrian style for the Kentucky Derby.  I couldn’t stay away from beach houses too long because we then looked at a beautiful one on the North Carolina coast.  Then I went crazy with 4 posts on strawberries, and red and green for Mother’s Day, and a picnic on the porch.  We finished the month with an herb dinner on the deck.

June 2014 Talk of the House

Then we stayed outside a lot in June with 3 “in the garden” posts:  sheds, outdoor entertaining, and window boxes, and then, because their gardens were sooo gorgeous, we toured A Little Inn on Pleasant Bay – waaaay up in Massachusetts.  That was followed by our 3-part Summer Home Tour (my favorite posts of the year.:))  I also shared the first of the Talk of the Weekend posts with you in June.

July 2014 July collage


In July we studied the work of Gary McBournie and the work of Carpenter and MacNeille. We enjoyed an ice-cream bar and barbeque for Independence Day, and we toured The Cottages at River Dunes.  At the end of the month, I wrote a looooong post about blogging that mistakenly made some of you think I was quitting (so sorry – didn’t intend to do that to you!) but I loved all 97 heartfelt comments on that post!

August 2014 Talk of the HouseThe month of August began with places at the beach – Castle Hill Inn and 4 posts on St. Simons Island here in Georgia, but then it was back to school with my classroom, homework stations, a bunch of back to school parties, and even a fun one (with a pizza recipe!) here.

Sept 2014 Talk of the HouseSeptember began with a post on all the crazy things that were going on with our family followed by 2 “decorating the house” posts.  We enjoyed the work of Summerour and Associates and Barbara Westbrook.  We looked at changes in the Henderson Village resort, decorated the porch, and had a Mitford meal to celebrate Jan Karon’s new book.:)

October 2014 talk of the House

I had a fun time working on our gallery wall project with some other talented designers in October, and then the closet in our sons’ room was finally organized.  We enjoyed seeing the spaces designed by Pritchett-Dixon and Dungan-Nequette, and we toured the amazing New York inn – The Point (perfect for fall.:))  Then we did our own fall decorating for outside, for inside, for a Halloween dinner, and for a yummy dessert bar out on the porch.

Nov 2014 Talk of the House

 Kathleen Rivers’ rustic rooms were perfect for November. So were Thanksgiving table settings and a beautiful barn wedding we attended.  We started work on my workroom, and we did a lot of decorating for Thanksgiving (3 posts!)  The end of the month found us shopping at the Pottery Barn Outlet in North Georgia.

Dec 2014 Talk of the House

Then the December rush began. We made a little progress on my workroom, toured the house with old Christmas decorations, had fun with some other bloggers for a Christmas in the kitchen party, made divinity, took a tour of historic homes in Macon, Georgia, decorated for the holidays, and celebrated Christmas.

Jan 2015 Talk of the House

More workroom progress was made in January.  We had a little photoshoot and film session with the Better Homes and Gardens folks.:)We compared some photos of the changes in the former Vera Bradley Inn in Seaside, Florida, and we perused the work of the talented Cathy Kincaid. (And there were quite a few Talk of the Weekend posts that month too.)

Feb 2015 Talk of the HouseFebruary began by asking you if you decorated with pink.  Valentine’s Day brought a Martha’s Vineyard home decorated with red and our house with an abundance of the color as well (and a few diy projects.:))  My husband’s office was almost finished, and we celebrated his birthday with a big weekend-long sports party. The architecture of John B. Murray finished out the month.

March 2015 Talk of the HouseDr. Seuss decor kicked off the month of March.  We then viewed some wonderful kitchen eye-candy.  Our trip to Disney World inspired 4 posts on some of the resorts and parks.  Back home we decorated for Saint Patrick’s Day, and my workroom was finished.  (Hallelujah!!:))  We looked at 30 ideas for organizing workrooms, and the month came to a close with the colorful Hotel Iroquois.

April 2015 Talk of the House And now we have reached this month of April where we have decorated the house with red and yellow, had lovely Easter meals, and visited the town, the houses, and a hotel in Celebration, Florida.

Phew!  That was a lot!  It has been such a busy year here at Talk of the House…125 posts in the last 12 months…and this post brings my grand total for all three years up to 400. Not bad for just an ordinary school teacher.:) And while we are playing with the numbers, here are the top 5 most read posts that were published in the past 12 months:

1.  Our Home for Easter

2.  Talk of the Weekend #6

3. Paula Deen:  Her Beach Cottage, Restaurant, and River House

4.  In the Garden: 25 Charming Garden Sheds

5.  Christmas in the Kitchen

And I have to thank my top referring sites for sending all you wonderful readers my way.:)

1.  Pinterest (Thank you to everyone who pins from Talk of the House!)

2.  Savvy Southern Style (Thank you Kim!)

3.  Classic Casual Home (Thank you Mary Ann!)

4.  Hooked on Houses (Thank you Julia!)

5.  Southern Hospitality Blog (Thank you Rhoda!)


And now it is time for a gift…because you can’t have a birthday without presents, right?:) I want to give away 2 books and a gift card to one of you lucky readers.

giveaway at Talk of the House

I just finished reading an advanced copy of Kristy Woodson Harvey’s delightful very first novel, Dear Carolina. (You may know her name from the lovely blog, Design Chic where she writes with her mother.) It was a touching work of Southern literature about 2 mothers and how their lives become entwined to form a family.  (It was so good in fact, that I found it hard to believe this is Kristy’s first novel!)  I love a book that leaves you feeling good at the end, and Dear Carolina does just that.  So I know you will enjoy it.  (It will be released on May 5.)

I am also including a $25 gift card for and a copy of my very favorite (and most used) cookbook,  Treasures from Home.  This is one of those cookbooks that has recipes that have been handed down from family member to family member- recipes you will use over and over again (with ingredients that you more than likely have on hand.)  It is a treasure!

Kristy is providing a copy of her novel, but the other two items are simply from me (non-sponsored) to thank you for reading here and making it so rewarding to write this blog.  I truly am humbled by all of your kindness. To enter, just leave a comment on any/or all posts that publish between 4/16/2015 and midnight Eastern time 4/23/2015 (on the blog – not an email reply please)- one comment per post please.  I’ll announce the winner, chosen from a random drawing, in the first post that publishes after that.  Good luck!

Until next time…

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Amy O'Quinn - April 16, 2015 - 6:18 am

Happy Birthday to Talk of the House! Great job, Kelly! In three short years, you have managed to create one of the very best blogs in Blogland! :) One of my hands-down favorites for sure, and I always check for new posts each morning. I enjoyed your recap of the last year at TOTH. I especially loved the posts about travel and your personal home decorating…and the food…and the gardening…and Talk of the Weekend. Oh my, it’s ALL great. 😉 Well done! Have a lovely and blessed day!

Mary Bostick - April 16, 2015 - 6:22 am

I love your blog and have used your inspiration in my own home. I, too, am a Georgia girl in a family of educators so I feel a real connection to your lifestyle. I am so glad to have found your blog and look forward to the next post!

Nan, Odessa, DE - April 16, 2015 - 7:01 am

Happy Birthday and Congrads!!!
I just joined you in the past year, enjoying each and every post, so this tells me I have lots in archives to read.

Thank you, your post inspires me every day and I look forward to your retirement too.

Karen - April 16, 2015 - 7:13 am

Happy Birthday! Very grateful for all the work and effort you put into your blog. It ii is a wonderful, positive blessing to anyone who reads it.

Peggy - April 16, 2015 - 7:16 am


Happy Birthday. Your blog is such a pleasure to read. Your warmth and talent come through all your posts. I always refer back to your posts for your unique decorating ideas.

Enjoy your success in the blogging world.

Hugs, Peggy

Vicki - April 16, 2015 - 7:21 am

As a teacher myself I don’t know how you have found the time to publish this blog and work full time too but I’m so glad you did. Looking forward to many more post to come. Happy Birthday Talk of the House!

Lynne - April 16, 2015 - 7:23 am

Happy Birthday to Talk of the House! Your blog is one of my favorites! You inspire your readers with your wonderful posts. Thank you for sharing your time, interests, and talents!

Gail - April 16, 2015 - 7:43 am

Happy Birthday Talk of the House! I personally am so very glad to have found you. When I log onto my email and see a post there I am immediately lifted up…even before I log on! You are a breath of fresh air out there in the midst of some pretty heavy stuff going on in life. Thank you so much Kelly for this bright compilation of beautiful postings from the past. We, your students, look forward to many more bright and beautiful spots in our lives thanks to your willingness to share your life with us. Blessings.

Anne from Atlanta - April 16, 2015 - 7:45 am

Happy Birthday to my favorite blog! I’m always happy to see each new blog. Thanks for all the time and effort you put into Talk of the House. I’m sending you lots of birthday love!

Liz - April 16, 2015 - 8:14 am

Happy Birthday! I enjoy Talk of the House so much – glad you are retiring from teaching so you can enjoy your family, travel and writing more posts:)

Cheri - April 16, 2015 - 8:16 am

I love how you documented your year…pretty cool, Kelly.


Diva Kreszl - April 16, 2015 - 8:19 am

Happy Birthday, congrats on turning three!!! Loved seeing your recap, so much eye candy to peruse!

Lori Q - April 16, 2015 - 8:20 am

Happy Birthday, Talk of the House! Kelly, thanks for sharing your talent, love and appreciation of architecture, design and all things “home” with us! It’s appreciated!!

Sandy - April 16, 2015 - 8:20 am

I am so pleased to have been following your blog since its beginning three years ago. Talk of the House has taken me to fabulous beaches, gorgeous houses, Disney in all its enchantment, and to your beautifully decorated home. I thank you Kelly for sharing your knowledge with us your readers. Happy third birthday Talk of the House.

Dara - April 16, 2015 - 8:22 am

Happy bloggy b-day! Your blog is a haven of inspiration and reality. Beauty and the beast of daily life balance. Thank you!

Diana G - April 16, 2015 - 8:22 am

I don’t remember how I even discovered your blog – but it quickly became my favorite. It’s the first blog I read in the morning with my cup of coffee. I must thank you for providing me with so much inspiration and wonderful ideas. Happy Birthday – and many, many more!! Ever think about writing a book….

Julie E. - April 16, 2015 - 8:35 am

I enjoy your blog. I love how you decorate your home by color on various holidays. Congratulations on your three years of blogging!

Debbie w - April 16, 2015 - 8:50 am

Happy birthday!! I love your blog and watch for new posts every day! I pour over your home pics and you know that I have enjoyed those classroom pics! ( I will miss those!) thanks your sharing your corner of the world with us !

Jill - April 16, 2015 - 8:52 am

Happy Blogiversary Kelly!! Although I haven’t had time to comment much lately, Talk Of The House is still my favorite blog and I read every post. Thanks for putting the time and effort into making this such an inspiring blog. Many blessings to you. I hope you’re in this this little spot in the blogosphere for a long time to come!

Gracia @ Gracious Offering - April 16, 2015 - 8:59 am

Kelly, happy Birthday to your blog! You had such a productive year…and dealt with pneumonia to boot! Thanks for all the home and blog inspiration. May the year ahead be a wonderful one for you and Talk of The House!

Barbara Hinske - April 16, 2015 - 9:14 am

Your blog is always my favorite thing to find in my inbox. Love this year-in-review post! Congratulations!! Barb

Renee Cook - April 16, 2015 - 9:17 am

Happy Birthday, Talk of the House, and congratulations Kelly! I don’t remember how I first found your blog, but have continued to enjoy it very much. I’m excited for your upcoming retirement from teaching and know you’ll enjoy having more time to pursue your many interests. May the BEST be yet to come for you and yours!

Terri - April 16, 2015 - 9:20 am

Happy Birthday to “Talk of the House” !!! Soooooo glad I discovered your blog….so much inspiration … ideas…. and just a lot of fun “tagging” along on all your adventures!!! Thanks for taking us with you via Blog Land!!! :)

Lynn A. - April 16, 2015 - 9:20 am

Happy, Happy Blog Birthday! I am so glad I found your blog. I just finished catching up on all of your posts yesterday. Can’t wait to see what you have in store for us this year! (((HUGS)))

Robin Nikkel - April 16, 2015 - 9:20 am

Kelly, I’ve just found your blog this year and have loved following it. I am glad you recapped your year. On the way to Austin, for Round top, last week I listened to “The Rental House” on audio tape. Today I saw you had posted pictures of Ebbtide and I freaked. I loved the book and in fact have been speaking with a Savanah drawl all week. (which is tricky, cause I already have an Okie twang). Love your blog! Please keep posting the wonderful homes, decorating, books and recipes. I can’t get enough. Happy Birthday!

Anne Boykin - April 16, 2015 - 9:25 am

Congratulations Kelly! Of course, I love your blog and love the way you decorate and the houses you feature. Thanks for all the inspiration. Many happy returns!

Katrina - April 16, 2015 - 9:31 am

Happy Birthday to Talk of the House… the absolute BEST blog in Blogland for sooo many reasons! Really too many to count BUT to name a few……1. Your decorating skills 2. Your creativity 3. Your love of all holidays 4. Your research and the sharing of your research 5. Your recipes 6. Your frequent posts 6. Your love of travel and the “trips” you take us on 7. Your way of making us feel like your friend 8. Your true humbleness 9. Your efforts made to respond to all comments made on your posts 10. Your creativity ( this deserves 2 mentions)
Okay, there are just a few reasons Talk of The House really is the best blog out there

Barbara H - April 16, 2015 - 9:32 am

Congratulations on this wonderful milestone! I am continually inspired by your great taste and creativity. I’m always pleased whenever I see a new post listed on my newsfeed and always save it for last to savor. I know how much work goes into maintaining a blog of this caliber-creativity on demand is a challenge. Thank you! One question- when can one find a copy of Treasures From Home?

Stacey B. - April 16, 2015 - 9:51 am

Happy Birthday! :)

Heather - April 16, 2015 - 9:57 am

Love your blog, Happy Birthday!

Joyce Mays - April 16, 2015 - 9:59 am

Happy Birthday to my favorite blog!

Arlene@Nanaland - April 16, 2015 - 10:03 am

Kelly, Happy Birthday to your great blog. Your blog is eye candy and that is one of the reasons I enjoy it so much. You inspire me to change up things around the house and look at color in a new way!!

Pat @ Life At Lydias House - April 16, 2015 - 10:04 am

Oh Kelly, congratulations on three wonderful years of blogging! Your blog is one of my favorites! I love your style and so appreciate all of the work that goes in to publishing all of these great posts!

Nancy - April 16, 2015 - 10:17 am

Kelly, Happy Birthday to you and your inspiring blog! There are many reasons to enjoy and look forward to reading your blog, but for me it’s the warm, inviting appeal of each post. You inspire me to create beauty and a feeling of home and family in my own home, and your style is one I love and can incorporate in mine.
You are so sweet and unpretentious and always original. I also like that your husband is so helpful and willing to participate in your projects. Thank you!

Helen - April 16, 2015 - 10:24 am

Love your blog. I found my way here after doing a search for Jan Karon. I then had to go back and read everyone of your posts. I love the look of your home and your little touches. Keep up the inspiration.

Carolyn - April 16, 2015 - 10:36 am

Happy Birthday and Congratulations! What a fun year it’s been – if you take out the parts where you were sick :-(. Thank you for bringing us such visual treats and inspiration, and for taking the time to respond, as you so often did. I’m certainly in awe, wondering how you found the time to blog with a full time teaching job, not to mention using your own house as an inspiration board. I feel like I’ve found a kindred spirit who loves some of the same wonderful things that I do (though I do admit to being a blue and not a red person – but you include plenty for me, too). I particularly love the posts featuring new traditional homes by (mostly) southern architects as well as renovated older homes, and their interior design. Anything rustic with a mountain locale is also a favorite, though I love seeing the coastal homes, too (gotta dream about vacation spots). The Summerour Associates and Barbara Westbrook posts were some of my favorites. I look forward to more house envy – how we love to torture ourselves! And I’m always looking for another good book to read.

Sheena - April 16, 2015 - 10:57 am

Happy Birthday, Talk of the House! As I look through past posts, I found myself wanting to pin, pin, pin! Kelly, from sharing your travels to showing us your own lovely home, you continue to inspire. Thank you, and congratulations!

Andi Irish - April 16, 2015 - 11:15 am

Happy Birthday Kelly!! Your blog is a must read for me. I love your style and appreciate your humility and consideration for your readers. You inspire girl!

Susan - April 16, 2015 - 11:21 am

Oh, wow, Kelly! Congratulations on 3 years of sharing your home and inspiration! Your blog is a delight to read and I look forward to seeing what you have in store for us in the coming year. My thanks, and best wishes to you~

Shelley - April 16, 2015 - 11:24 am

Adore your blog! It’s refreshing to find someone else who loves red and can’t get enough of buffalo plaid and check patterns in this decorating world of trendy neutrals

GinaE - April 16, 2015 - 11:31 am

Congrats on you blog birthday! Your blog is a favorite of mine and I never miss reading a post.

Dawn R. - April 16, 2015 - 11:32 am

Happy Birthday to Talk of the House! Kelly, your blog is a pleasure to read and it’s so informative too.
Keep up the good work!
Dawn R.

kathy - April 16, 2015 - 11:34 am

Happy Blog Birthday, Kelly! I have read every single post you have done, most several times because I have to read them fast then go back and take it all in slowly. Once Katrina told me that she had found a blogger that was my sister, I went back and read every post I had missed. (I am not sure how long ago that was.) You have really inspired me to do lots of things in my house, in entertaining, and travel. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! (From the comments above it sounds like everyone feels that same connection!)

Leslie Anne @ Fairhope Supply Co. - April 16, 2015 - 12:39 pm

Three years! You and I have bouncing baby blogs only three months apart! I would have guessed you had been doing this so much longer because of your great writing, photography and good-looking site. You found your place in life, because we all love seeing the things you have to show us on each fabulous post.

Here’s a toast to many more years of you making me want to re-do my entire house!

Ruth - April 16, 2015 - 12:41 pm

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, Talk of the House, and congratulations, Kelly, on reaching this milestone!!! It is no exaggeration to say that ToTH is among the most well-organized and easiest-to-use blogs or websites on the web, and it never fails to lift my spirits and get my creative juices flowing. It is a virtual dopamine dispenser. I arrived at the ToTH party somewhat late in the game, thus still have some catching up to do among your previous posts. I eagerly await the happy hours I plan to relish in that task!
Reading your recap of the year gone by is enough to boggle the mind. I cannot fathom how you managed to juggle all the research, projects, travels, writing, “scrapbooking”, celebrations, and tribulations you’ve shared with us, let alone your job and all the day-to-day responsibilities of family and household management that AREN’T covered in the blog. I bow before your joyous energy, your imaginative approach, your constitutional fortitude, and your organizational abilities!
Like your other blog-followers, I look forward to the next year of uplifting and inspiring missives from you, and wish you all the best as you retire from teaching to focus your energies on home, family, and blog.

Jill - April 16, 2015 - 12:51 pm

Happy Birthday! I just joined this past year & have enjoyed seeing all the homes & great places you’ve gone. Can’t wait for the Christmas catalog you’re home will appear in! Thanks for all you bring to my email inbox, Kelly.
Blessings to you & yours, Jill

Barb - April 16, 2015 - 1:35 pm

I am so thankful that I found your blog. Thanks to you, I enjoy each passing season. Your posts and pictures always fill me with inspiration. Maybe this weekend I’ll make an Orange Marmalade Cake to celebrate. Congratulations Kelly, on another wonderful year!!

Mary Ellen - April 16, 2015 - 1:51 pm

Happy Birthday to one of my favorite blogs! I can’t help but smile every time I read your blog. It’s like a visit from a dear friend. Thanks for sharing beautiful places and lovely things.

kate snow - April 16, 2015 - 2:40 pm

I would love to win the cookbook. I have looked on Amazon and not been able to find it there. It would be a wonderful collection to my “collection”.
Loved this post and will go over the posts to make sure I have not missed anything.

Kim - April 16, 2015 - 2:55 pm

Congratulations and Happy Birthday! I love your blog.

Vickie - April 16, 2015 - 3:35 pm

Happy Birthday, and thank you for a beautiful blog! I enjoy each and every post!

christi in ma - April 16, 2015 - 3:42 pm

Happy blog birthday!!

Gina - April 16, 2015 - 3:50 pm

How exciting to be celebrating three years!! I think you’ve done well considering working outside of the home. :) I think I have a little catching up to do. My old computer had a hard time loading all your beautiful photos so I didn’t visit as often. I am thankful for a new one now so I can visit regularly. :) I love your blog.

Jan - April 16, 2015 - 4:05 pm

Happy Birthday!! I love your blog. I especially love the posts of your home. Sometimes I think we could be twins. Your taste is so very much like mine. Thank you for sharing your home with us!

Carol Ann - April 16, 2015 - 4:16 pm

Thank you for creating and sharing Talk of the House with all of us. It is a joy and inspiration to read. I am amazed at your talent for decorating, writing, photography and putting it all together on your blog. You are a very busy lady and I just appreciate you making the time to share this wonderful blog with all of us. I can’t wait to see what’s next! Happy Three Year Birthday!

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

You’ve been very busy and we’ve enjoyed every post you publish.
I too am reading an advanced copy of Dear Carolina…it’s wonderful!
Can’t wait to see what adventures and creative ideas you publish in the coming year. I’m always impressed and inspired by your creativity.

Tina - April 16, 2015 - 6:17 pm

Love the blogM

LJ - April 16, 2015 - 6:37 pm

Happy Birthday, Talk of the House!
Kelly, you do a marvelous job and I want to add that I enjoy reviewing your archives.
Now how many days to “the” day (retirement)?
I hope you are celebrated at your school and that many of your former students will connect with you. Be blest!

Mickey - April 16, 2015 - 6:58 pm

Congratulations to Talk of the House. Your blog is one of my favorites, it makes my day when I see it in my email. Good luck with your retirement, my husband is on his 2nd year from his guidance counselor career and loves every minute of it. Have a great weekend! Mickey

Kim @ Vintage Pretties - April 16, 2015 - 7:20 pm

I’m so glad that I came here from Hooked on Houses! Your blog is one of my favorites, both from the inspiration that I find here as well as feeling that I’m connecting with a wonderful person.

Donnamae - April 16, 2015 - 7:50 pm

Happy Birthday to Talk of the House! You have been busy this past year…and it sure has gone quickly! If you did that much posting while you were teaching…do you think you’ll be posting more once you retire? 😉

Teacher Anne - April 16, 2015 - 8:08 pm

Such a wonderful review of all the fabulous places you have been and you have made beautiful. I always enjoy stopping in. Best of luck for many more years of great blogging!

Vickie White - April 16, 2015 - 8:14 pm

We are so lucky to have you posting your wonderful ideas for us to enjoy!!! Thank you for all your hard work!!!!

DeeDee - April 16, 2015 - 8:14 pm

Happy 3rd Birthday!

PATTI - April 16, 2015 - 8:20 pm

What a whirlwind of a year! I have loved every minute of it! :)

Jeanne Bell - April 16, 2015 - 8:40 pm

Happy Birthday to your wonderful blog. You have created a great escape for your readers. Look forward to your retirement it is wonderful. I have been retired for 8 months and love it. I worked for 40 years and loved my job but I don’t miss it…just the people.
Thanks for sharing your life with us.

Teresa W. - April 16, 2015 - 8:43 pm

Congratulations & Happy Birthday! I always enjoy your posts and can’t wait to see what project you tackle next. Have a great weekend!

Betty - April 16, 2015 - 8:55 pm

I wait for your blogs every week. I am a retired teacher so I know how much work you must have and am amazed by the number and quality of your posts. Looking forward to many more. Happy birthday!

Charlene - April 16, 2015 - 9:37 pm

Happy Birthday to the best blog out there! :) Definitely my favorite. I still remember when I “discovered” your blog. Has been my favorite ever since. Thank you for all the wonderful posts. Looking forward to many more years of your creativity!

Angela - April 16, 2015 - 10:17 pm

Happy Birthday to Talk of the House and congratulations Kelly. I love and enjoy your blog so much and have looked at and re-read many posts more than once. You have helped me reconnect with my love for red and I have changed all my family picture frames to the ones you use in your home. You have a huge influence ya know. ; ) I think, as many others have said, you really should consider writing that book. I would definitely buy one!

Stacye Clark - April 16, 2015 - 10:25 pm

Kelly – You have so inspired me to reach the ‘blogger’ status and am just enjoying writing and posting at the moment without a clue! I love how humble and easy you share ideas and beautiful things. Best of luck to you and HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!

Stacye Clark
Vignette a` la Mode (FaceBook)

Shannon - April 16, 2015 - 10:49 pm

Wow, I’m tired after all that traveling around! ☺️ My favorite posts are the ones from your beautiful house!!

Cynthia - April 16, 2015 - 11:31 pm

happy blog anniversary and best of wishes for your continued success. Love your blog and the wonderful photography!

Wanda - April 16, 2015 - 11:35 pm

Happy Birthday to your lovely blog!

Tricia - April 17, 2015 - 12:05 am

Congratulations and Happy Blog Birthday. I really enjoy following you and wish you the best in retirement too!

Lynne - April 17, 2015 - 12:21 am

I love your blog and I’m always excited when I see a new post! Congratulations on 3 great years!

Merri Jo Schaubroeck - April 17, 2015 - 12:33 am

Happy blog-birthday! Your site is one of my favorite places to spend time….your photography, your inimitable sense of style and the graciousness of your writing make each & every visit utterly enchanting. You are far from “just an ordinary school teacher”! Not many people possess your wonderful gift of creativity & superhuman energy! May your final days of teaching become the fabric of lovely memories, Kelly.

Debra - April 17, 2015 - 7:07 am

Congratulations Kelly! So glad I found your sweet little blog. I always enjoy your posts, especially the ones that give us a peek at what is happening around your beautiful home. I can’t wait to see what posts will come, once you are officially retired, (no pressure :) Toot, Toot again on that BHG issue yet to hit the press. Good for you! Happy Birthday Talk of the House.

Benita - April 17, 2015 - 8:17 am

Happy birthday to your blog and congratulations! I’m so thankful that I found your blog last summer! I’ve enjoyed reading your posts, looking at all the wonderful photos and have tried a few of your party suggestions – the July 4th decor was a hit at our party! Your blog actually inspired me to start my own and I appreciate all of your helpful suggestions! I can’t tell you how much I appreciated your doing that for me! It was very kind and generous!!! I hope you have a wonderfully blessed day!

Peggy - April 17, 2015 - 9:40 am

Love your blog- can not wait until you retire and do it full time!
I would love to get my hands on that cookbook!
Thanks- Peggy

Theresa in Nebraska - April 17, 2015 - 2:02 pm

Happy Blog Birthday! It’s been a delight to follow along.

Faye - April 17, 2015 - 4:51 pm

Happy 3rd birthday and happy 1st anniversary of my introduction to your wonderful blog, Kelly! I was swept away by your posts last spring about the Georgia coast and have been hooked ever since on both blog and beaches. I am also planning my retirement, and the coast is at the top of my relocation list after a visit to Savannah and another trip soon to the SC beaches. All the info you have shared has been so personal and helpful. Like from a cherished friend! All the best to you, Kelly as you retire from teaching and venture on to new and wonderful experiences.

Lanita Anderson - April 17, 2015 - 6:26 pm

Happy Birthday to Talk of the House!! I am a relatively new reader, so I enjoyed going through all of the posts on our “recap”….that was fun!! I’ve so enjoyed your posts, especially your decorating posts (love your house!) and the table setting ideas. Looking forward to another great year….
Blessings to you!

Cindy - April 17, 2015 - 7:18 pm

Happy Birthday, Talk of the House! Kelly you are a great addition to blog land and I look forward to each of your posts.

Angie - April 17, 2015 - 7:52 pm

Happy blog birthday! My sister told me about your blog about a year ago, and I have been a loyal follower since that time. Thank you for the time and effort you put into Talk of the House. May God continue to greatly bless you, your family, and your future endeavors.

Barbara P from Ma - April 17, 2015 - 7:58 pm

Hi Kelly, Your trip down memory lane has me wanting to go back and reread ALL of your posts! Congratulations on 3 years of blogging excellence! I’m sure I’m not your only reader who looks forward to your posts and enjoys them immensely! Such a wonderful giveaway! Cookbooks and feel good novels plus a gift certificate!!! what more could anyone ask for!! Imagine you must be getting excited for your upcoming retirement!

Megan - April 17, 2015 - 8:03 pm

Hi Kelly,
Happy Birthday to Talk of the House! Your blog is one of the only blogs that I check in on regularly. You have been so kind with your responses to emails and comments (I did get that sofa reupholstered after our conversation). I wish you all the best – keep it up with the pertinent and interesting posts – we love them!

phyllis - April 17, 2015 - 8:18 pm

I remember where I “met” you…The Lettered Cottage and how I wished that you had a blog (you didn’t yet). Then you did!!! Yay, me! You keep writing, and I’ll keep reading! Hugs :)

Donna T - April 17, 2015 - 11:00 pm

Congratulations and Happy Blog Birthday. Your blog is one of my favorite. I’m always excited to see a new post. You do a great job coming up with a variety of interesting and timely topics. I can’t imagine all you will accomplish when you finish your full time teaching career. Congratulations on that also, Donna

Julia - April 18, 2015 - 9:39 am

Happy Birthday! I love your blog, your home and your style. I found you on Pinterest and I’m so happy I did. I’m constantly amazed at all you do while working a full time job! Keep blogging – love the inspiration!

Lynn - April 18, 2015 - 10:02 am

What a delightful start to my weekend!! My morning cup of coffee with Kelly! I love seeing your blog updates in my email – they are such a treat, I almost squeal with glee! But this post was just beyond expectation! Love your blog and your warmth makes it like a visit with a friend!! Thank you sharing your home and inspiration with us. Happy Blog Birthday!

Christi {Jealous Hands} - April 18, 2015 - 1:36 pm

Congratulations on your birthday – and thank you for such a generous giveaway! xo

Kelly - April 18, 2015 - 1:54 pm

Happy Blog Birthday! What a wonderful recap of the year. It’s hard to believe, but I must of missed a post or two. This makes it really easy for me to find them, thank you!! I really do enjoy your blog, I know it takes much time where you could be doing something else. Thank you for the time, effort and love you show in each post!

Debbie Jacobs - April 18, 2015 - 3:17 pm

I always enjoy reading Talk of the House. You share so many
wonderful thoughts and experiences with your readers. Also some truly exceptional pictures. I have a blog and even though I don’t post as often as you do, I certainly appreciate the time and effort you put into yours! Happy Birthday and cheers to another wonderful year!

kathy - April 18, 2015 - 3:27 pm

I love all your decorating ideas and esp. your photography.
Thanks so much for this giveaway!
Happy Blog Birthday to you!

Judith whitmore - April 18, 2015 - 5:46 pm

Thank you Kelly, for the gift of your wonderful blog. It is always at the top of my list!

Vicki - April 18, 2015 - 5:54 pm

Luv your blog. I find so many things that interest me here, and the photography is beautiful. Happy Borthday!


Sharon - April 18, 2015 - 7:56 pm

I love your blog. I check every evening hoping to find a new entry. It’s a great perk at the end of the day. Your style is exactly what I love.

Kayleigh O'Neal - April 18, 2015 - 8:29 pm

Happy Birthday to Talk of the House!! I remember back when you were talking about starting it! I’m so proud of you and love looking at all of your design ideas. Keep up the great work!

Tricia - April 18, 2015 - 8:47 pm

Happy Third Birthday, Kelly. I absolutely love your style, and your home is my idea of perfection. Thank you so much for sharing your gifts with us. Looking forward to many more years of Talk of the House.

Monika - April 18, 2015 - 9:15 pm

Happy 3rd Anniversary, Kelly. Seeing a new blog from me always makes my day. I hope you NEVER stop writing and sharing photos with all your fans.

Bonnie - April 18, 2015 - 9:26 pm

I can’t remember how I came to find your blog, but I am hooked. I love your spirit, your style, and your simplicity as you focus on details. I continue to come back, again and again. You are an encouragement to me to boldly make changes (even small ones) to have my home become a place that I enjoy and that welcomes others.

Town and Country House - April 18, 2015 - 9:54 pm

HI Kelly,
I’m a bit behind on my reading, so Happy Belated Birthday and Congratulations! Your blog has been among my “must reads” for all three years! I’m always inspired by your table settings and menus and a little bit (okay a lot) jealous of your fabric collection and your new office space. Thanks so much for all the great content! Paula

Wendy D. - April 18, 2015 - 10:02 pm

I love your post, so much inspiration. Thank you for the giveaway.

Vicky Hunt - April 18, 2015 - 11:10 pm

Happy Blog Birthday! I always enjoy my visits here…:) I get lots of inspiration! Your tables, calligraphy, and decorating style are all perfection! Have a blessed weekend. Thanks for hosting such a sweet giveaway!

Blessings, Vicky

N from VA - April 19, 2015 - 4:35 am

Congratulations on three years! Thank you for your lovely and personal blog.

Sandy from Valpo - April 19, 2015 - 8:52 am

It’s always the start of a good day when I see one of your posts, and to think you have been doing this for three years! Congratulations and Thank You for sharing your creativity, your adventures, and your lovely home. You Are an inspiration!

Jennifer from Chesapeake, VA - April 19, 2015 - 9:17 am

Kelly, soooooo excited and thankful for your blog hitting the 3 year mark! I always tell you that your blog is my favorite, and I MEAN IT!! It is cozy and friendly. Just like a friend with a hug! I love to pour a hot cup of coffee and sit down to your blog. You continue to inspire me. I always love when you put which posts your readers read the most! Hugs to you Blog friend! (ps. don’t enter me in the contest as I was the winner last time!) And I STILL love the cookbooks!

Michelle - April 19, 2015 - 2:20 pm

Happy Birthday!!! What a great giveaway, the books sound great! Thanks.

jackye - April 19, 2015 - 4:11 pm

Would love to win’

Dawn - April 19, 2015 - 7:34 pm


Happy blog birthday! Thanks for sweet recap! I love getting to take e-trips with you. I wish you all the best on your blog birthday and always! Take care.

Mrs. T - April 19, 2015 - 9:27 pm

Happy blog birthday! I think I found your blog by way of Arlene at Nanaland, and I have subscribed by email for quite some time. Love your blog and the inspiring ideas. What a wonderful, generous giveaway! Thanks for the opportunity to win, and for putting all of the hard work that you do, into your blog. It’s truly a place of inspiration.

Rachel - April 19, 2015 - 11:52 pm

Happy Birthday! I am a new reader – I just discovered your blog. Filled with great ideas. I’m going to enjoy being a follower. Thanks for the give away.

Tracey - April 20, 2015 - 12:26 am

Happy Birthday! Recently found your blog and love stopping by!

Lori - April 20, 2015 - 9:10 am

Kelly, all of your posts are beautiful….but it is really something to see so many of the beautiful pictures in one post…stunning. Happy Birthday!

Kathleen Leonard - April 20, 2015 - 9:52 am

Here is another “happy birthday ” to you and your blog. I am really looking forward to seeing what you do on the blog after you have retired from your day job. Love, love, love your home and your style!!

Debra C - April 20, 2015 - 10:36 am

I love your blog! Happy Birthday!!

Amy C. - April 20, 2015 - 10:55 am

I love reading your blog! This birthday post was great. Looking forward to many more posts.

Jaybird - April 20, 2015 - 4:55 pm

Happy Birthday…you are one of my favorite bloggers!!
Blessings to you,

Joan - April 20, 2015 - 5:34 pm

New to the your blog. LOVE IT! It is a stress reducer for me….

Pam Jenkins - April 20, 2015 - 10:14 pm

Happy Birthday! I really enjoy your blog.

TracyK - April 21, 2015 - 8:39 am

I love your blog. Thanks so much for all the work you do to share beautiful ideas with us!

Nona - April 21, 2015 - 6:01 pm

Looking forward to reading Dear Carolina. I love books that make me feel good. I also want to thank you for all the Tybee Island cottages you have shared with your readers. They are so charming.

Kaye Ann - April 22, 2015 - 8:04 am

I found your blog a couple years ago and I’ve loved it ever since. You have a style that matches mine perfectly! Happy Birthday Talk of the House!!! Many Many More!!!

Kari - April 22, 2015 - 9:08 am

I love your blog! Thank you for sharing your wonderful ideas with us!!

Debbie - April 22, 2015 - 12:01 pm

Happy Birthday Talk of the House! Love your blog! Always enjoy your ideas and creations. Thank you for sharing.

Donnie - April 22, 2015 - 1:52 pm

Congratulations on your anniversary. What a joy to see a post from you. always a celebration for the eyes and heart!

Cindy - April 22, 2015 - 2:19 pm

Love your blog and all the reds. Happy Blog Birthday

Libby - April 22, 2015 - 4:57 pm

Love your blog and seeing all of your great ideas Kelly. You are one busy lady. Happy blog birthday!

Sherry Myers - April 22, 2015 - 5:02 pm

How do I love your blog, let me count the ways…well, really too many to count. I can truthfully say, you have the “Best All Around” blog to which I subscribe. When I check my email, I always scroll to see if there is one from Talk of the House, and then, I MUST open it first. Then I usually read it at least twice. Thank you for all those posts. I have enjoyed each and every one of them. Happy Birthday! I am thrilled to have found you. Your posts make my day more times than I can count. Keep the creativity rolling, amazing lady. Thank you.

Pinky at Designs by Pinky - April 22, 2015 - 5:25 pm

Congrats on 3 years!!! I don’t have any idea of how you do all you do!!! You amaze me! But, I wish I could just follow you around for a week and watch (and learn)!!!!

Dawn S - April 23, 2015 - 7:22 am

This post was a lovely recap of the last year! You had so many wonderful experiences! Congratulations on 3 years and here’s to many more!

Kathy P. - April 23, 2015 - 3:47 pm

Happy Birthday. Your blog is wonderful – down to earth and realistic. I just love your style. Thanks for sharing with all of us.

Celebration, Florida – The Homes

Celebration town FloridaOn our first day in Celebration, my husband and our daughter followed the walking trail that wound all through the town. When they returned to the hotel they said, “You are going to love that walking trail.  It goes by all the houses you want to see.”:)So on our last morning there, we all took a leisurely amble on the trail..or should I say trails?  (There were quite a few sections!)  Starting by the hotel, we wound around the lake to the other side and then crossed over a bridge. (The town was built on top of swamp land…and yes there were alligators in the lake!)

Celebration walking trailWe walked under tree limbs and over another bridge, and came out…

Celebration treehere…at another lake…This time with a view of lovely homes.

Celebration across another lakeBut my tour guides (aka husband and daughter) said, “We are not going there yet. We want you to see these other ones first.”  Okay, I thought, but these look pretty darn good to me.

So we kept walking…right through a sweet little garden…

Celebration walk through the gardenand we came out at Eastlawn Drive…

Celebration Eastlawna pretty street by yet another lake.

Celebration streetOh my goodness at the big houses on that street! Honey, we’re not in Florida anymore.  If that house had not had the palm tree right in front of it, I would have thought we were back in Georgia.

Celebration antebellum style homeand then there was this traditional beauty…

Celebration homeand this one with its stacked stone.Celebration house with stoneThen we turned and went down another street.

The homes there were not quite as large.

Celebration Victorian stylebut I really liked the charm of that neighborhood.

Picket fences, front porches…

Celebration sidewalk homes

close enough to your neighbor to chat.:)

Celebration sidewalk with homesWe walked on down the sidewalk to another street.

Celebration street with homesMore charming homes with picket fences

Celebration Lake Evalyn

Celebration street with picket fencesNear the end of one of the streets (that overlooked one more lake!) we came upon this beautiful white home.

It was my favorite (for awhile.:))

Celebration white house

We walked around that lake…back through the garden…

Celebration flower bedover the bridge

and said goodbye to the lovely neighborhoods.

Celebration across the lakeIt was then time to pack our bags and head home, but on our way out of town, I made my husband stop the car so that I could take a photo of this one…my new favorite! (If our home grew up and had a second floor, I would hope it looked like that one.:))

Celebration brown houseThere was a lot of construction going on in Celebration as we got closer to the highway – apartments..maybe condos or villas – not sure which.  But my sweet and patient husband stopped one last time so that I could snap a picture of these.  :) I thought they were cute…kind of reminded me of one room schoolhouses for some reason.

Celebration housingand that was the end of our visit to the Disney town of Celebration, Florida.

I hope you enjoyed seeing it, and I also hope you get to visit it one day.:)

Until next time…

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Leslie Anne @ Fairhope Supply Co. - April 13, 2015 - 2:29 pm

So happy you snapped these photos for us. I’ve been to Celebration several times, but not since I’ve been blogging with my constant camera in hand! It’s so nice to see these beauties and how they are all so well cared for and loved. The yards are all neat and tidy. I’d love to see a copy of their neighborhood rules and standards!

Glad the alligators didn’t get you!

Charlene - April 13, 2015 - 2:53 pm

Wonderful post – I have been waiting to see the what you shared with us about the homes of Celebration. Do you know if any of the quaint cottages are for rent or are they all private homes? You are such a great Mom to think about the perfect spot to take your daughter. Glad you had a wonderful trip! Thanks for sharing it with us.

Susan - April 13, 2015 - 4:08 pm

A friend of ours was a homeowner in Celebration for quite some time until he remarried and relocated to his wife’s home in another state. It looked exactly like the white house in the 6th picture (first picture of a home)!!! He loved it and was sad to leave, but happier than I’ve ever seen him in his new marriage.

Marianne in Mo. - April 14, 2015 - 11:02 am

If my house grew up…..too funny! I like that one too! But ALLIGATORS…No freakin way!
Thanks for the tour, I doubt I will ever get there myself. Been to Rosemary Beach once, and fell in love. I think my hubs feels that you only visit a state once, unless your kids live there! Even though we’ve retired, we only take one trip a year. Some times I think I could hop in the car and take off alone, explore at my pace, which is slow! Hmmm……

Kathy - April 14, 2015 - 1:30 pm

I don’t know what I was expecting but the houses are much closer together and the yards are much smaller than I thought they would be. Did some homes have larger lawns? (My husband is dreaming of a “postage stamp lawn”… me, not so much.) I am glad you shared this post. I have wondered what Celebration looked like since a family I taught moved there. I do like how manicured everything looks. Again, thanks for sharing.

Donnamae - April 14, 2015 - 1:34 pm

I love that they don’t look like normal Florida homes…not that there’s anything wrong with that! I like those smaller school house ones too! Thanks for the tour! 😉

Ruth - April 14, 2015 - 1:41 pm

I’ve long been curious about Celebration. Walt Disney remains one of my heroes, and his vision of the world — what it could be — is a world I could happily inhabit. Kelly, I appreciate so much the beautiful tour you’ve given us, and the mini-vacation! Charlene, I’m with you that Kelly is quite the mom to think through her daughter’s mindset in coming up with such a fun and creative getaway so close by. Lucky kid! Leslie Anne, I’m hoping to be in Fairhope in a couple of weeks. Maybe I’ll see you there! Kelly, thanks again for lifting my day with your every post!

Frances in England - April 14, 2015 - 2:05 pm

Oooo, I think my favourite is the ‘smaller’ white one (11th photo down, immediately below the stacked stone one). Nice little porch, some picket fence and a friendly feel. :-) Does anyone know the type of tree growing along that street? I don’t recognise it.

I had to laugh about the alligators. On a visit to Georgetown SC a few years ago hubby and I got very excited when we saw a sign on the boardwalk warning not to feed the alligators. We, of course, really wanted to see one – don’t get those in the UK!! (we didn’t see one, but it pepped up our walk no end)

Joan - April 14, 2015 - 3:09 pm

O, Kelly, this was fun. And you are right the last photo does looks like old school houses. The bell tower look on the roof, I think. Thanks again, for taking us on your great trips.

Shirley@Housepitality Designsi - April 14, 2015 - 4:52 pm

We have been to Celebration many times especially when we lived about 1 1/2 hours away then….Loved seeing it in its early development….the area is beautiful and love that they build the homes to accommodate sitting on the porches and talking to the neighbors as they walk by….a beautifully planned development….love their restaurants and shops too!….

Garden, Home and Party - April 14, 2015 - 5:30 pm

I love the houses you selected as some of your favorites. That last one was my favorite too. I loved the paint color and of course the black shutters.
Wouldn’t it be great to live on or near a lake…not sure I’d want alligators near by, but I’ve always liked the idea of living where I could see water…bay or lake. :-)
Great tour.

Dawn - April 14, 2015 - 6:11 pm


Thanks for the e-walk. It all looks lovely. The stacked stone house is my favorite! I just love all the texture and interest it has. Thanks for sharing! Take Care.

Louvina - April 14, 2015 - 8:56 pm

Wonderful walking tour of Celebration! I have never been there but hope my daughters will take me there for my Mother’s Day outing!! Loved the southern looking homes especially the Charleston one with the porch ceiling painted Haint Blue ( Sherman William’s Paint has it) if the readers don’t know the legend of Haint Blue it is quite interesting! :) the story goes that it really works!! Maybe Kelly you could retire down here? Or at least come down for the winters?!

Dawn S - April 23, 2015 - 7:47 am

Celebration looks lovely! I hope to visit someday!

Celebration, Florida – The Town

Celebration hotel porchWalt Disney had a dream of a planned community –  a futuristic town – one he called EPCOT.  It was to be a model community that others would study.  Unfortunately, he did not live to see his dream town come to fruition.  Epcot became a theme park, and his planned community went in a different direction than one he had imagined (but I still think he would love this town.:))

Celebration DowntownInstead of a futuristic place, the planners of The Walt Disney Company enlisted the help of many notable architects including Michael Graves (who passed away just last month) and Robert A. M. Stern, and they looked backwards to the architectural details of old Southern towns. They wanted a sense of nostalgia – a place that would be all American – much like Main Street in the nearby Magic Kingdom.   Celebration became that place with the feel of a small Southern town from the 1930’s – a place in which Walt Disney himself might have wanted to grow up.

Celebration lamp post

Just like in all things that Disney touches, details there were given great attention.  Celebration’s logo of the little girl riding her bicycle is on everything from the town stationery to the lamp posts (above) even to the manhole covers.  There is a town fountain, and when my daughter and I were standing beside it, I commented that it felt like we were in Savannah (one of the towns the architects looked to for details in the town plan.)

Celebration fountain square

All the commercial buildings downtown have a stucco exterior painted in varying pastel shades – giving a sense of continuity to the appearance of the community.  There is a school, a large health center, and a number of retail shops that we went in.

Celebration street cornerUnfortunately, the main one I had most wanted to see has closed – Downeast, a men’s and women’s clothing shop. (Or at least it was temporarily empty while we were there…the website still shows it as a retail business in Celebration.)

Celebration streetAnd the very nostalgic movie theater has also closed.  How sad.  I worry how all the retail establishments are making it there.

Celebration movie theater

But…it appears that if the business is affiliated with anything food related, it is doing well.:) Next door to the old theater is a Kilwins.  Oh my goodness at the heavenly scent that came from that place!

Celebration sidewalk

Fudge was being made while we were in the store.

Celebration Kilwins fudge


Celebration Kilwins fudge displayAnd more yumminess.:)

Celebration Kilwins candiesDown one of the streets was this interesting place named U Can Cook.  We wandered by it after it had closed for the evening.

Celebration U Can CookI believe it is a place for cooking classes and other special events. Here is a photo I found online from a Christmas gingerbread building workshop.  Looked like fun!

Celebration U Can Cook at

Another food related place we enjoyed was the Sweet Escape Bakery.

Celebration Sweet Escape

Celebration Sweet Excape bakery caseMy favorite memory of our entire trip to Celebration was sitting at one of those tables there outside Sweet Escape Bakery at night.  My husband, our daughter, and I enjoyed coffee and a dessert and just sitting there chatting.

Celebration at nightOn our first night there, we had dinner at the Celebration Town Tavern.  I had read some reviews that said it was the best place to dine.  Their seafood is flown in from Boston (not sure why you would do that when you are in Florida – perhaps it was for the lobster.)

Celebration Town TavernOur daughter had fish and chips.  My husband has some kind of broiled fish.  I had a bacon cheeseburger, and we all shared the very good strawberry shortcake.

Celebration Town Tavern dinnerWe had breakfast one morning at Market Street Cafe.

Celebration Market Street CafeThe interior has the feel of an old diner.

Celebration Market Street Cafe interiorThey were very busy, and service was slow, but the food was delicious (especially my French toast with a brown sugar butter!)

Celebration Market Street Cafe breakfastsI would have to say that our best meal was at Cafe D’Antonio – an Italian restaurant.

Celebration Cafe D AntonioWe went early for dinner that night – first customers in the door.:)

Celebration Cafe D Antonio entrance

Celebration Cafe D Antonio interior

Our server brought bread and olive oil before the meal.  Our daughter wanted the calamari for an appetizer, so she and my husband shared that dish.
Celebration Cafe D Antonio appetizerFrom our daughter’s braised lamb shank to my husband’s veal piccata to my capellini d’ Angelo with those delicious sundried tomatoes – it was all good…very good.:)

Celebration Cafe D Antonio entreesAnd you know you just can’t eat at an Italian restaurant without trying their tiramisu, right?:)

Celebration Cafe D Antonio tiramisuVery yummy…and all very filling.  When you eat that much you need to work it off. So where do you go for that?  In Celebration, you can play in the water fountain down the street afterwards.:)

Celebration water parkOr take a walk on their walking trail.

Celebration walking trailWe took a walk on that trail while we were there, and I’ll show you what we saw on it the next time we get together here.  Will you be enjoying a nice meal out somewhere or perhaps a walk on a trail this weekend?

We’d love to know what you have planned.

Whatever it is, I hope you have a lovely time.:)

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Louvina - April 11, 2015 - 12:47 pm

I love weekend traveling trips with you!! You find the best places to explore! And the food looks divine! The area around WDWORLD has so much to offer– even to year round residents. It has been the best move for our family when our girls were young. They thank us all the time for bringing them to FL. We hope you will come and visit many more times!!
We had driven through there years ago, but this was the first time we had stayed there and had the opportunity to really explore it. It was such a nice change from all the excitement of Orlando. Yes, the food was excellent! (too excellent!) We will certainly be back. :)

kathy - April 11, 2015 - 1:24 pm

Celebration looks like a fun place to visit and eat! Are you going to show us some of the homes? It looks like the weather was perfect. This weekend I am working on my tablescape for the annual teacher scholarship fundraiser which is this week. (Your post made me very hungry.)
It IS a fun place to visit and eat. The houses are coming in the next post. :) Is this the fundraiser where you do the themed table with a group of friends? If so, I would love to see how yours turns out this year! Good luck on your weekend project.

Carolyn - April 11, 2015 - 2:10 pm

So enjoyed your photos of Celebration! We went there years ago when it was fairly new and were very tempted to purchase our retirement home there, but bought in SC instead. We loved the planned community and charm. So sorry to hear the little theatre has closed.
Well I am glad you did Carolyn! The place does tempt you into wanting to live there. I thought it was so sad that the big beautiful theater could not stay in business. I wish they could find a creative use for the building.

Frances in England - April 11, 2015 - 3:09 pm

Wow. So that is another place to put on my “Want to Visit” list. It looks absolutely delightful, and I am in (jealous) awe that some people actually get to *live* there. Wow. Just wow.
Yes, put it on your list Frances. :) Come on over to visit, and then find you a cute home there. (Quite an assortment is available!)

LJ - April 11, 2015 - 5:22 pm

Hi Kelly
I always enjoy all your posts and these of Celebration are like a mini-vacation for me–thank you, ’cause it’ll be awhile before I can get away for a few days.
You asked about this weekend–I did errands this a.m. and now yard work this afternoon and probably tomorrow too–and that’s good but oh! to travel…. :-))
I am happy to “take you along” on our trips. :) It sounds like you are having a very productive weekend! I would like to work out in our yard, but the pollen here is still so bad, I don’t want to take a chance on my allergies going bonkers. So I will stay inside for a week or so longer. Hopefully the pollen will be about through by then.

Garden, Home and Party - April 11, 2015 - 5:35 pm

What a lovely place Celebration is. I’d love to visit there, or even live there! Leave it to Disney to attend to every detail. Thank you for sharing this wonderful area.
Have a wonderful weekend!
Disney certainly knows how to pay attention to every little detail for sure. You would probably love the place Karen – especially since you worked for Disney years ago. Hope your weekend is a good one too.

Leslie Anne @ Fairhope Supply Co. - April 11, 2015 - 5:40 pm

I adore Celebration and have always been fascinated with the city planning that went into the overall concept. There’s always a “Truman Show” feeling to it, a little too planned, if you know what I mean, but I think as it ages, that goes away.

Can’t wait to see your photos of the houses. We were able to tour a Southern Living home there years ago . . . fabulous!
I do know what you mean about the Truman Show feeling. There were many people who said it was very Stepford Wives-ish when it was first being developed. I think any planned community is going to have that sense of “control” which is what makes you think that, but it is also that very same planning that makes people want to live there as well. Clean town, well kept yards, architectural control. And Celebration is quite a contrast to the sprawl that is all up and down I-4 at every exit around Disney. It is a nice contrast to all of it. I think you are right about the aging of the community…the grown trees probably help give it more of a “real town” atmosphere. How fun to see one of the Southern Living houses there! I would have loved that!!

Dawn - April 11, 2015 - 6:18 pm

I always enjoy taking e-trips with you. I would have enjoyed all of the exploring and eating you guys did. I can’t wait to see the trail walk you guys took. Have a great weekend. I am off to walk my boxer.
Wish we could have taken you along with us Dawn! The town was fun to explore, and my goodness at all the good food we ate! Have a great weekend.:)

Tricia - April 11, 2015 - 8:32 pm

Kelly, immediately after reading your post I forwarded it to my friend, Pam, who is at her winter home in Pinellas Park. I hope she and her sister and BIL visiting from Nova Scotia will spend a day there to explore, walk on the trails and visit some of the restaurants you recommend. Thank you!
Great! I hope they get to explore Celebration too…especially the Italian restaurant. :) There is also a Spanish restaurant there that is supposed to be quite good. I hate that we ran out of meals to get to eat there….hopefully we will get to try it on another visit to the town.

Donnamae - April 11, 2015 - 9:29 pm

Thanks for the tour Kelly! Next year when we go to WDW, we’ll make sure to visit this area…and eat at some of those great restaurants! Keep these posts coming….I’m taking lots of notes! 😉

mary ann pickett - April 11, 2015 - 10:27 pm

Thanks for the tour. We haven’t been there in years but would like to visit again.

Pinky - April 11, 2015 - 10:53 pm

Thanks for the tour os the town! I want to go there one day, maybe next winter. It all looks like a fun place.

Linda - April 12, 2015 - 11:06 am

WOW, made me want to take my family! Gardening this weekend. Soaking up some sunshine.

Arlene@Nanaland - April 12, 2015 - 11:29 am

What a great getaway. I would love to have walking trails like those near me!

christi in ma - April 14, 2015 - 11:22 am

Celebration looks cute!
Our first night at Disney we were at Raglan Road and the server told us that cod was flown in from Boston that morning. We told him so did we! LOL I did order the cod and it was great!

Dawn S - April 23, 2015 - 7:50 am

Those food pictures made me gain 5 lbs! I really want to visit Celebration now!

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