Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Summer-Inspired Mantel


Courtesy of Layla Palmer
Photo courtesy of Kimberley Power

Hi Friends,

Sticking with a monochromatic palette and classical finishes, such as glass and metal, blogger Kimberley Power creates an ocean-inspired feeling above her fireplace. Beachy accents and a nautical knot ball further illuminate a sense of the sea. Although nothing speaks of Spring like the Beach, your mantel can feature a nautical theme or even spring flowers or garden plants. The sky is really the limit...

Have fun and make it your own...

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Live well,
Yvonne

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Happy First Day of Spring!

Courtesy of Allison Norton

Hi Friends,

Spring is the most hopeful season of the year. Along with the warmer days and budding blooms that symbolize spring also come the hopes of dining outdoors, and the exciting feeling of trying new activities. Be an advocate of making seasonal to-do lists in order to keep life interesting. Here are a few ideas that will have you ready to embrace any adventure that comes your way before Labor Day. Without further ado, here are 10 Spring adventures that should go on your Spring bucket list…

10 Things to Try This Spring

1. Go to an outdoor music festival.
In the past few years, I have come to associate the month of April with Coachella. If you have never been, there is no better time to go than now (the lineup this year is amazing!). And if you’ve been before…do I even have to convince you? For those of you who don’t live in Southern California, be sure to look into Mile High Music Festival, Outside Lands, Lollapalooza, and Bonnaroo, which are all in the summer.

2. Go on an impulsive weekend road trip.
The best kinds of road trips are the ones that happen in a spur of the moment decision. Pick a place you have always wanted to visit (I’m dying to go to Big Sur), grab your best friend or boyfriend, and just make it happen. Be sure to bring a cool camera to take snapshots along the way.

3. Create a cozy patio set up for springtime entertaining.
My apartment has a darling little back patio that is just begging to be used for an al fresco dinner party. This spring, I vow to add outdoor furniture, twinkle lights, and potted succulents to make the space inviting and useful. If you have a patio, I encourage you to do the same!

4. Springify your closet.
There’s nothing like a bit of spring-cleaning to help get you excited for new warm-weather wardrobe staples. Donate items you haven’t worn in a while, and reorganize the clothing and accessories you plan to keep for a fresh perspective. It will give you a good idea of what to add to add to your spring shopping list.

5. Hike to the highest spot in town.
Los Angeles has some pretty amazing hiking spots that are especially enjoyable on a gorgeous spring day. This season, take advantage of getting a good workout and enjoying the view by hiking to the highest spot in your town. You might even see your city in a whole new light.

6. Volunteer once a week.
Volunteering once a week this spring (and beyond!) is so rewarding, and it will enrich your life. I highly recommend researching a food bank, soup kitchen, or inner city school closest to you and lending a hand. It doesn’t even need to be once a week—even going once a month will make a difference, and it will make you feel good in return.

7. Learn how to nurture.
Practice cultivating something this spring… Whether that means planting an herb garden, bringing home your first goldfish, or buying a puppy, learning to take care of something else will give you a broadened outlook on life.

8. Learn how to bake a pie.
I’ve always wanted to learn how to bake a pie from scratch, and this season I’ve decided to make it happen. Bake a pie with seasonal spring fruits like rhubarb, strawberries, or cherries.

9. Add a flea market addition to your home.
While you may be quite familiar with the flea markets in your area, a vintage splurge might not happen every time you make the trip. Promise yourself one special purchase at your local flea market that you will love in your home. It will refresh your d├ęcor for the changing seasons and get you excited about adding more new pieces in the future.

10. Add a few sun kissed strands to your hair.
In my opinion, one of the best parts about spring is that it leads into summer! Get your tresses beach-ready by adding in a few highlights. If your hair is chestnut brown, throw some golden strands into the mix. If you’re a redhead, try a bit of strawberry blonde. And if you have golden locks, bright blonde is the way to go.

These are just a few ideas to get your started, compliments of Allison Norton but if you might also be inspired by Malavika Suresh with Spring Inspiration.

Spring Inspiration: Things to do this spring...

1. Go on a detox/cleanse.

2. Spring clean your home.

3. Have a yard sale (or an e-bay sale) to get rid of what you don’t need anymore.

4. Rearrange the furniture in your home. Feng Shui up your life and bring in a newer and fresher energy.

5. Have fresh flowers in your home.

6. Take care of your legs (it’s time to get those bad boys out!) and toes. Get pedicures and manicures often.

7. Update your Spring/Summer wardrobe.

8. Learn some new hairstyles.

9. Detail your car.

10. Start a brand new project.

11. Plan a summer trip.

12. Start a reading list.

13. Get a new hair style.

14. Take more walks in beautiful places.

15. Ride your bicycle.

16. Have a picnic.

17. Start running again.

18. Drink more water.

19. Wear lighter colours.

20. Start an outdoor hobby.

Both list are great, but whatever you decide to do this Spring have fun with family and friends...

Check back for more great ideas and enjoy this Spring from your friends at Interior Design!

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Live well,
Yvonne

Check back for more great ideas from your friends at Interior Design!

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Live well,
Yvonne

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Spring Has Sprung


Courtesy of Layla Palmer
Photo courtesy of Layla Palmer

Hi Friends,

A collection of classic white dishes and pitchers, combined with pops of light-green foliage and birds' eggs, creates a fresh spring-inspired composition. Natural elements, like birds' nests and rattan chargers, give textural contrast to the display. The piece de resistance: the oversized chalkboard, which provides an excellent opportunity to introduce a sweet springtime sentiment or just a friendly welcome...

Check back for more great ideas from your friends at Interior Design!

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Live well,
Yvonne

Monday, March 17, 2014

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Courtesy of The Holiday Spot

Hi Friends,

Found some history on St. Patrick from The Holiday Spot and thought we would share this information about the patron saint of Ireland with all of you.

Enjoy!

History of St Patrick
St Patrick is known as the patron saint of Ireland. True, he was not a born Irish. But he has become an integral part of the Irish heritage, mostly through his service across Ireland of the 5th century.

Patrick was born in the later half of the 4th century AD. There are differing views about the exact year and place of his birth. According to one school of opinion, he was born about 390 A.D., while the other school says it is about 373 AD. Again, his birth place is said to be in either Scotland or Roman England. His real name was probably Maewyn Succat. Though Patricius was his Romanicized name, he was later came to be familiar as Patrick.

Patrick was the son of Calpurnius, a Roman-British army officer. He was growing up as naturally as other kids in Britain. However, one day a band of pirates landed in south Wales and kidnapped this boy along with many others. Then they sold him into slavery in Ireland. He was there for 6 years, mostly imprisoned. This was when changes came to him. He dreamed of having seen God. Legend says, he was then dictated by God to escape with a getaway ship.

Finally, he did escape and went to Britain. And then to France. There he joined a monastery and studied under St. Germain, the bishop of Auxerre. He spent around 12 years in training. And when he became a bishop he dreamed that the Irish were calling him back to Ireland to tell them about God. The Confessio, Patrick's spiritual autobiography, is the most important document regarding this. It tells of a dream after his return to Britain, in which one Victoricus delivered him a letter headed "The Voice of the Irish."

So he set out for Ireland with the Pope's blessings. There he converted the Gaelic Irish, who were then mostly Pagans, to Christianity. He was confident in the Lord, he journeyed far and wide, baptizing and confirming with untiring zeal. And, in a diplomatic fashion he brought gifts to a kinglet here and a lawgiver there,but accepted none from any.

Indeed, Patrick was quite successful at winning converts. Through active preaching, he made important converts even among the royal families. And this fact upset the Celtic Druids. Patrick was arrested several times,but escaped each time. For 20 years he had traveled throughout Ireland, establishing monasteries across the country. He also set up schools and churches which would aid him in his conversion. He developed a native clergy, fostered the growth of monasticism, established dioceses, and held church councils.

Patrick's doctrine is considered orthodox and has been interpreted as anti-Pelagian. Although he is not particularly noted as a man of learning, a few of his writings remain extant: his Confession, a reply to his detractors, and several letters. The Lorica ("Breastplate"), a famous hymn attributed to Patrick, may date to a later period. By the end of the 7th century Patrick had become a legendary figure, and the legends have continued to grow since then. There are many legends associated with St Patrick. It is said that he used the three-leafed shamrock to explain the concept of the Trinity; which refers to the combination of Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit. Hence its strong association with his day and name Legend also has that, Saint Patrick had put the curse of God on venomous snakes in Ireland. And he drove all the snakes into the sea where they drowned.

True, these are mostly legends. But, after some 1500 years, these legends have been inseparably combined with the facts. And together they have helped us know much about the Saint and the spirit behind celebration of the day. Patrick's mission in Ireland lasted for over 20 years. He died on March 17, AD 461. That day has been commemorated as St. Patrick's Day ever since. The day's spirit is to celebrate the universal baptization of Ireland. Though originally a Catholic holy day, St. Patrick's Day has evolved into more of a secular holiday. Or, rather, 'be an Irish Day '. And the Irish has borne it as part of their national tradition in everywhere they populated and prospered. The Catholic feast day for this most loved of Irish saints has become a holiday in celebration of the Irish and Irish culture. The leprechaun, a Celtic fairy, has become entrenched as a chief symbol for this holiday, as is the shamrock, an ancient symbol for the triple goddess Brigit. It is fitting that this holiday should fall at the time of the year when the return of spring begins to seem at hand.

Happy St. Patrick's Day from your friends at Interior Design!

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Live well,
Yvonne

Friday, March 14, 2014

How To Choose Spring Flowers for Your Garden


Courtesy of Armstrong Garden

Hi Friends,

Spring flowers can enhance the color of your garden with minimal effort; it's all about bright, happy colors. What’s a spring garden without yellow, pink, and purple? Below are some of the most popular, easy-to-grow spring flowers.

  • Impatiens – The most popular flower in America. They are great for shade or partial shade (full sun near the coast!) And will flower from the minute you plant and all year long. There’s almost no care required.

  • Geraniums – This classic garden plant is a great choice for hot areas—especially ivy geraniums. (You see these in parking lot plantings for a reason!) They take full sun, and will bloom spring through fall. (Show zonal and ivy)

  • Pansies – What’s spring without pansies? Cheerful, colorful and easy. Pansies bloom until our heat moves in, usually in June. Pansies take full sun or partial shade.

  • Snapdragons – Spikes of colorful flowers for full sun. Kids love them (show a close up of pinching a flower “dragon”). Snapdragons will bloom until it gets hot, like pansies.

  • Petunias – Mounds of color for sunny areas. Virtually care-free, too! If you want to fill a large area, petunias are a great choice as the mound and spread.

Planting
  • Remember to follow light requirements
    - Shade: impatiens
    - Sun: geraniums, pansies, snapdragons, petunias
  • Amend the soil with EBS Planting Compost
  • Mix in EBS Sure Start at same time to give them a good start
  • Water regularly while establishing
  • Water once a week later

Care
     1. Easy! Just feed every 2-3 weeks to keep plants in bloom.

Sit back and enjoy the compliments...

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Live well,
Yvonne

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Framed Paper Napkins


Courtesy of Kate Doherty and Rachael Weiner

Hi Friends,

You don’t need to overhaul a room to make it feel new. We gather easy, inexpensive ideas for you!

Turn leftover cocktail napkins into art by taping them inside shadow box frames. Make a grid of the same pattern, or mix and match whatever colors you like most. 5" x 5" paper beverage napkins in, clockwise from top left, Chevron on Ice Kiwi, Lime Green Polka Dot, Limoncello Plaid and Quatrefoil Magenta, from $3 for a set of 16, platesandnapkins.com; Ribba 9" x 9" frame in white, $10 each, IKEA stores.

Afordable and easy to do...

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Live well,
Yvonne

Friday, March 7, 2014

Daylight Saving Time Begins...



Hi Friends,

Just a friendly reminder to set your clocks ahead...

Check back for great decorating ideas from your friends at Interior Design!

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Live well,
Yvonne

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Make the Bed Quick


Courtesy of Betsy Goldberg
Credit: Melanie Acevedo

Hi Friends,

Pressed for time is a daily occurrence. Save some time with a Make the Bed Quick trick used by the popular Sabrina Soto. Pull the flat sheet all the way up and the blanket two thirds of the way up, then fold the sheet over the blanket and fold the duvet in half at the foot of the bed. On the weekend, make the bed more elaborate by adding three Euro shams behind the regular pillows and shams. Most people use two, but three cover the entire head of a king-size bed and looks so luxurious with very little effort.

So quick and easy...

Check back for more great ideas from your friends at Interior Design!

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Live well,
Yvonne