cook | niçoise porch life.

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Salad niçoise is one of my go-to’s for back porch summer dinners, especially with guests. I like that guests can mix and match–add anything to their salad they like, and leave off stuff they don’t care for. It’s a win win.

And now that we’ve finally got back porch weather, bring on those entree salads. What are some of your go-tos?

f.o. | mrs. kim cross stitch

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For those of you that know me personally, I’m a Gilmore Girls fan. Amy Sherman-Palladino and Dan Palladino, the show’s creators, are my heroes. The pop culture references, book references, quick wit, and well -timed and brilliantly curated music selections were, and are, near and dear to me.

And so, when the opportunity to make a Gilmore Girls inspired cross stitch that didn’t feel silly popped up, I jumped. One of the show’s characters, Mrs. Kim, is anti all music that isn’t religious. And so, it was fitting to make a sign that declared she disapproved of my music collection, and hang it above a selection of our vinyl in the living room.

This pattern took one afternoon to complete–my favorite quick project with rich rewards. It fits in nicely with the rest of my art in the living room and I like that it can be kind of a cryptic message– so fun.

home additions.

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I’ve been hemming and hawing over floating shelves for my kitchen since I bought and moved in last June. I looked at Ikea and hated the quality–twice. You can see where I’d hang them from most parts of the house and I wanted something sturdy and substantial, something that “shows” and is a piece of art in and of itself.

Nothing stuck.

I found some amazing Japanese burned ones that blew my mind. Then, I priced them out. In my “forever” home, I thought.

So I went to a trusted source: Etsy. I support local, small shops and artisans who create incredible things every day (hello! I make, too). And why I never started there is beyond me, because I stumbled on Sound Side Carpentry and their amazing reclaimed barn wood pieces.

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Last weekend, we finally got our floating shelves delivered. We also purchased a hairpin leg stool that doubles as a million different things (which I love!): a side table, a stool to sit on when we have extra guests for a party, a plant stand for our cactus which traveled 3,000 miles from Phoenix with Sean to live with us in Boston last summer.

And it fits my eclectic taste. I would never want to walk into a house and know what store, and when in time, that owner bought and decorated everything. I spend a lot of time thinking things over and deciding where it should go and whether it makes sense. I love vintage antiques. Unique pieces. One of a kinds. I’ve even sometimes bought something that didn’t work right then but knew at some point, it would be a must piece that completes my space.

My floating shelves are amazing and finally let me display some of my bowls and glassware and vases and kitchen trinkets I’ve collected along the way. I get to show off some of my vintage Blakley Arizona cacti frosted glass collection (I’ve got more on my bar cart), too.

See more snaps from my home here and here.

 

brunch

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Is the best thing. I miss my visits to Phoenix, where patio brunching is a new year round possibility. Especially for ceviche and breakfast tortas and the best margs imaginable.

But, it’s better that the doc and I can now brunch any Sunday we’d like, even if it isn’t patio style.

I miss my holiday break; brunch even on Mondays or Tuesdays, and time catching up and connecting.

 

olives.

My mum and I found this amazing cocktail mixing glass and shooters recently on an antiques browse. This set is in mint condition–complete with glass stirrer and two glass picks for olives or cherries or onions. It’s a dream come true; the perfect addition to my bar cart. And it was only $20.

Last night, Sean and I enjoyed our first extra dirty martinis in this new set. Cheers, indeed.

hanging.

This past Sunday, I nodded into my favorite antiques shop in Manchester, NH. I love it because the prices are great and the mid century modern selections can be to die for. I got this incredible bookcase there for just $35.

This time around, I found this incredible teak hanging shelf in mint condition for the same price as the bookcase. We have since put it up in the living room above the record rack, and I’m so pleased with how it looks.

It’s a great spot to display some of the many little knickknacks I’ve collected along the way–a vintage brass sheep, a Navajo folk art pig, some small succulents, and of course, a Drake Saint candle.

Waiting for the perfect piece is so worth it. And, despite loving mid century modern antiques, my home feels very eclectic and not like we stepped into 1955. I love that about it.

stockings.

Sean and I have a gorgeous gas fireplace in our living room of the new home. So it seemed fitting that I finally make some Christmas stockings. It is November, already, after all, and I had some amazing Pendleton fabric remnants laying around that I thought would be perfect for the project.

The cuff will have a fold over of tan micro suede style fabric in which I’ll embroider our names.

Hopefully I can finish these soon. I’ve got them both cut out, and one partially sewed. All in time, right?

bedroom.

Sean and I finally decided on some art for our bedroom. It’s one of the last places where we hadn’t picked a single thing for the walls. I think this R.C. Gorman is perfect for the space.

Next spring, we might change the wall color. Home decorating is a process; I’m slow, at times, to make a decision. I try to be thoughtful with every purchase and have been collecting one of a kind antique pieces for years. I think it’s paying off.