Celebrations

June 29th, 2016

This past week was somewhat of a blur.   I spent it doing all the pre-measuring of the dry ingredients for the what ended up being around 200 IMG_5848cupcakes & a small cake for two separate events.

Both were celebrations-  one a wedding.   A couple starting their lives together, a new chapter in their life journey.  The other, celebrating 25 years of life, love and friendship together.     I was deeply honored to be able to play a small part in their special day.

The joy and smiles on their faces is why I do what I do.

This week, I decided to take a week to ‘rest’, but as it is, I haven’t done much of that.  There was so much that needed to be done that hadn’t been attended to since we returned from vacation, that I’ve spent most of my days and some evenings doing that.

Two days of gardening and planting flowers and herbs, but we’ve created yet another beautiful space to relax and enjoy!     This weekend will bring a visit from a friend, plus more baking & hopefully some great weather to enjoy along the way.

This afternoon, I’m working on some household organizing.   I’m parting with things that no longer bring me joy, or serve no real purpose & working on a better organization style with my business supplies.  I can’t wait to see it all done.  It’s going to be great!

What does your week look like so far?  Whatever it is- I hope you are filled with joy.

Neighbors

June 29th, 2016

As most of you who know me already know- things have been a huge blur since we returned from our vacation. It was one for the books though, with the highlights being two weddings, plus seeing the amazing Harry Connick Jr. in concert.

During my jet lag days (which I think I’m about over), I’ve heard my neighbor who has a band practice at odd times of the night. Since I am usually sleeping, I don’t hear them, but I guess he’s been testing his new amp and microphone adapter, because his voice seems to carry more than usual. I’m also surprised at how different he sounds compared to before we left. It sounds like the voice lessons he’s been taking have definitely paid off.

I heard through the grapevine that they will be playing at a local talent concert in a few weeks. I’m hoping we can get there to help support them. If not, I’m sure I’ll hear them practicing beforehand.

Moving Right Along

June 21st, 2016

A few more days (around a week) and this month will be one for the books. In addition, we will also be kissing the first half of this year goodbye and welcoming the last half. Really? I guess time really does fly when you’re having fun.

Our vacation ‘home’ was simply put- amazing. Not only did we celebrate two weddings, we also did a little traveling while we were ‘home’, plus we spent time in the company of people we love.

Since this trip was several weeks shorter than usual and a LOT busier, we didn’t have the opportunity to see very many people at all. I saw a few family members, but there were more that I wanted to see and didn’t get to. The same went for friends. I was unable to see everyone who was on my ‘must see’ list- because there wasn’t enough time in the day to do so.

We do have another trip planned, so next time ‘should’ allow for more visiting time and more time with people we love and admire.

We arrived home with a lot of jet lag and I jumped right into work getting ready for this upcoming weekend which is filled with a wedding I’m doing, plus an anniversary party. I’m grateful for the work and always have fun sharing what I love with others, plus blessed that I can do what I love as my occupation.

I have, however, blocked off next week as some ‘me’ time to regroup and refocus, plus to hopefully get some rest and get past the jet lag. I have quite a few things on my to-do list, which includes getting some more home improvements completed in our home.

July kicks off my birthday month- and what a fun month that is going to be!

Dream Locations

June 21st, 2016

While I was home- the one thing I seemed to hear consistently was that people really wanted us to move back, plus that they wanted to see my business come along with me. While I was there, I visited what would be my dream location for a shop. They had everything I would have ever wanted in a space, including Philadelphia expoxy flooring that I love so much. There is something about the look- the shine and beauty, that can’t be beat.

It seems that I already have a small customer base there, plus I’m honored that everyone seems to think that having a shop would create a big buzz in the area. The beautiful space I fell in love with is already the location of a beautiful local coffee shop. They serve breakfast and roast the beans on property. Their gorgeous flooring makes for an easy clean-up, while looking great, plus even though they only had a few baked goods in their glass case, I could almost imagine it filled with my own baked goods.

For years my dream was to own and run a Bed and Breakfast, which if you know me would be perfect for me. I adore people and am genuinely interested in their stories, plus I love to entertain, so this seems like a logical step for me. At the same time- I am and have been for as long as I can remember, passionate about baking and sharing that with others. Once I baked a cake for a friend and gave it to her when she stayed the night around her birthday time. She said no one had ever baked her a cake and she could tell it was made with love (and it was). It brought me more joy than I can express to have been able to give her that piece of love from my kitchen, and it’s one of the reasons I do what I do. Being able to add something special to a persons day- to bring a smile to their face- for them to taste the love. That’s why I do it, and the more people I can share that with- the more joyous I feel.

So is my business a possibility in my home town? Absolutely.

Welcome June

May 31st, 2016

I can’t believe that we are only a few hours away from the first day of June. I know I’ve been neglecting this space, but it hasn’t been intentional. As I mentioned before, we’re home for vacation and for a very special wedding.

That special day is a few days from now- and having been there today when the soon to be bride did her bridal photos- I know she’s going to wow not only her future husband come wedding day, but everyone else. She’s gorgeous inside and out & in her dream gown, even more so.

This trip has been much different than most of our trips home. We usually have an abundance of time to visit with everyone, but this trip hasn’t been like that. I miss being able to see everyone, but being here for this wedding- plus the other wedding that I ended up doing when I was here, I wouldn’t trade for anything in the world. I’m grateful!

We have several more weeks here and I know they’ll fly. I am embracing and enjoying every single moment and can’t wait to look back on all the wonderful memories I’ve made.

I’ve forgotten how much I miss the coast this time of the year.

Keeping Cool

May 31st, 2016

One thing I haven’t missed about being ‘home’ is the heat and humidity. The past few days have been so warm, and while I tend to think about the warmth as a coastal thing, one of my friends in Ohio said that the heating and cooling Columbus has also been something they have needed more often than not. Apparently their winter was somewhat mild, so she used the heating less, but it started heating up there earlier than usual, so those days of leaving the doors and windows open were short lived.

Since we also generally don’t come home this time of the year, but instead, during the winter months, it’s been a huge climate difference for Marcel too. He has great intentions of going outside to help my diddy with yard work or to sit out and read, but that has been short lived every single time. He can’t be without the air conditioning. I expected to really be struggling a lot as well, even though I’m from the coast, but it isn’t the warmth that’s getting me- it’s the humidity. I can’t imagine how it was ‘back in the day’ when there were no air conditioners. It makes me wonder how they managed. One thing is for sure, I’m grateful to know that we don’t have to find out what that is like. Give me a cool breeze, a glass of ice water (with lots of ice) and I’m a happy girl. When it comes time to go to bed, give me a comfortable bed and a cool bedroom to sleep in. That is bliss to me. I know it may seem like a little thing, but being cool when I go to sleep makes all the difference in how I sleep at night.

Right now- the shower is calling, and a little later on- that cool bed will be awaiting me. Tomorrow is a new day filled with more wedding preparations. Just a few days until I do.

Whole 30 Results

April 24th, 2016

Life has kept me on the go as of late, which meant I didn’t finish updating on my Whole 30 progress, plus the results.

I didn’t weigh myself before or after- but I can tell I lost weight. On the whole, it has changed the way I feel about food on so many levels. I’ve been done more than a week, and truth is my energy is higher than it has been in YEARS! Truth is, I don’t know when the last time was that I had so much continuous energy, and sometimes so much so that I would have to really watch myself in the evenings or I’d be buzzing along and unable to sleep at all.

Yesterday, after a busy day we decided to order out- simple meal- hamburgers and french fries. The flavor wasn’t bad, but within 45 minutes, I felt horrible! Sleepy, sluggish etc. It lasted throughout the evening and that reminded me of how I felt ALL the time pre Whole 30. Most of the time I felt worse, but it was yet another reminder of how I do NOT want to live.

My husband also wants to do the Whole 30, as he has RA, so we’ll do that after our vacation. I’ll do it with him, as I’m somewhat living Whole 30ish right now anyway. When I go for the less ‘real’ foods, my body reminds me of why I don’t want to poison myself with sub-standard foods.

I was at the point before Whole 30 that I felt something was terribly wrong with me, and while I did believe the food would make a little difference, I never realized just how much. Life changing- seriously! … this coming from someone who eats whole foods 85% of the time anyway, but not to the degree of Whole 30.

Was it restrictive? Yes- Was it hard? NO! Not for me at all. I did not struggle unless I didn’t plan properly and then I wanted to eat more, but on the whole- I didn’t have the cravings and I still don’t.

I’ve added all things back without any big reactions to them, but I will continue to keep grains, dairy and sugars to a minimum, but will eat beans and legumes when the urge strikes me.

This is very much doable and it will make a huge difference in how you feel, plus how you look at food.

Home Painting Projects

April 24th, 2016

With our vacation pending, our home improvements have come to a screeching halt for the time being, but the inspiration continues to flow as I look at Hingham painters and see what great work they do. As much as I would love to be a do-it-yourself person for everything, truth is- we just don’t have the time, inclination or skills, so we’ve decided to leave a lot of things to the professionals.

As most of you know who visit this space regularly, we had a professional come in to do our living room a while back. We did all the prep work (which wasn’t necessary, but something we wanted to do to help the professionals), so it made for a very smooth day of painting. Later, Marcel decided to do the painting in the hallways himself, but some he ended up having to redo, as he just couldn’t get the coverage in one go the way the pros did, despite using the same type of paint. It was then when we realized that it makes sense to let someone else take care of things for us, so upon our return from vacation we will get an estimate for the rest of the rooms that need painting and go from there.

That will mean more time for other things we are good in, such as decorating and such. What’s your preferred method? Are you a do-it-yourselfer or do you prefer to pay a professional to come in and take care of things and get it done properly the first time? Also, what are your favorite color schemes to use? I’ve been browsing some of the newest color trends from Southern Living magazine, and there are quite a few that catch my eye. I love how inspiration can be found in so many little things.

Whole 30- Days 23-27

April 10th, 2016

I can’t believe it has been five days since I last posted.  I realized it had been a few, but admittedly I’ve been running in so many different directions that I have lost track along the way.

This week also has a big buzz of busy- but I was able to get SO much accomplished last week, that once this week is done, the last couple of weeks before our trip should be a breeze.

I am still rocking the Whole 30 and feeling better than ever.   My sleep continues to not be as good as usual, but I believe that’s part time-change and also partly me having so much energy- or as they call it in Whole 30 world-  “Tiger Blood”.  I definitely have it.

IMG_1720Today, despite having a day off from everything- I didn’t really do a lot in preparation for food, and it showed in how I’ve eaten today-   I ate a lot of bacon, and grabbed a lot of nuts here and there throughout the day.  I had been so busy during the week that I decided to forego playing in the sunshine, and instead spent quite a few hours cleaning and getting things ready for the new week.  Since Marcel was having dinner at his moms-  I wasn’t focused on myself- (and that wasn’t smart) so I skipped breakfast and lunch (insert bacon and nuts here).    Dinner, I made a soup of roasted butternut squash, fresh ginger, coconut milk, carrots, a little mango, peppers and of course, bacon!   It sounds a little odd- but trust me when I say it was amazing.

The plus is- I have plenty of leftovers for tomorrow, and that will mean a quick and easy lunch for me-    I’ll probably add some spinach to it to bump the nutrient factor.

Tuesday we’re going to be gone all day-  I have a cheesecake delivery several hours from here-  but I am prepared.     The rest of the week is looking good, and as it looks- I’ll be done on Thursday- as I decided to do 31 days.   I already know that I’ll continue to follow the Whole 30 plan pretty closely until we head to our vacation, with the exception of having an event on Saturday, and maybe a few other little things here and there.  I like the way I feel, so why mess with that?   I don’t believe I will.

 

 

 

The Joy of Pets

April 5th, 2016

If you know me in person, then you also have had the great pleasure of knowing two of my favorite ‘critters’ on the planet-   IMG_1539JJ and Mister Mistoffeeles.    JJ, the Cairn Terrier, who never meets a stranger, and pretty much loves everyone.   He’s smart, social and a joy.  Even when he’s misbehaving and getting into trouble, the looks he gives me often have me cracking up with laughter.

Mister M. is more of the majestic, total zen and cool cat.    He doesn’t let much get under his skin, but at the same time he’s extremely spoiled.   He likes to drink water from the bathroom sink- and will sit there sometimes for an hour waiting for someone to enter and give him some.   I guess we can’t say he isn’t patient when it comes to that.    On the other hand,  like many cats, he can be quite demanding- wanting to be petted and meowing until he gets his way.   Stop before he’s ready and you’ll be met with more meows.

IMG_1480I miss them when we travel and know that it doesn’t matter if we leave the house for five minutes or five weeks, they are always thrilled to see us return.    I know not everyone finds pets to bring such joy to their household, but I can’t imagine my life without them.   I know Marcel feels the same.

As you can see from the photo (both of these are from my Instagram feed-   you can find me by searching for Wizardress), Mister M. was having one of his moments and thinking that the Apple TV remote was a chew toy-   He is obsessed with it for some reason.   I’m not sure why, but if he had his way and I wasn’t paying attention, he would be using it to bat all over the house.

Needless to say, that’s not happening.

Even in those little ‘naughty’ moments, I still smile, and wouldn’t take anything for them.    After all, they are our four-legged members of the family.

 

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