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The Year in Flowers, Part Deux

The flowers continue, as the rest of the year unfolds.





















20141231-093537.jpg The year in blooms…
Thank you so much for following along. I think we make pretty awesome travel mates. Truly, I love having you all along for this ride called life. My hope has always been that sharing some of my/our moments makes us all slow down a bit and savor the moment. Savor those incredibly rich moments we all have. We just have to see them. Cheers to many, many more in the new year!
Sending much gratitude, love & thanks,



The Year in Flowers

Having flowers in my life, if even just a single stem by my bedside, is of great importance to me. I also know many of you feel the same way. They give us energy, inspire us, and are just food for the soul. I actually meant to type the word ‘good’ for the soul, but it autocorrected to the word ‘food’ and I thought that was even more fitting. Here is a little homage to the flowers that brought a little brightness to us all as the year closes. Starting off with those stupendous red tulips that started off the year with a bang in January to the dancing paperwhites in December. Enjoy!























20141230-085438.jpg Oh my stars, that is already 25 and we are only in July! So I guess the post tomorrow will be the rest of the year–many more lovelies await…



Ted’s Tip No. 25

20141229-091016.jpg Look up, look down. Look all around. For there are details constantly surrounding us and filling our lives that are often not to be missed–the pattern of a ceiling, the color & grain of a wood floor, the way the light hits an object. Up, down, all around. Repeat.



A Tulip Moment

20141228-054018.jpg We woke up the other morning to this. The white tulip just bursting and stretching and being everything it could be. Magical & stupendous all at the same time. I think that is what is love most about flowers, tulips particularly. Even after all these years, they still continue to surprise me. They capture a moment in time. They delight.



A Saturday Quote

20141227-082156.jpg We arrived yesterday to WestWard for a week of much needed R&R. The quiet of our little slice of island life always makes me slow down a bit. It really is where I do some of my best thinking, planning, dreaming. This week out here is our tradition and it lines up nicely with thinking ahead to the next year, and what we would like to do. This quote struck me the other day and even more so this morning when I looked at it again. I also tend to think of my Dad more often when we are here. He would have loved it at WestWard. I learned so many lessons from him that I carry with me to this day. One was that he despised comparison to other people. He felt you should never compare or envy another person’s life. I learned early on that the quickest way to not get something I asked for was to compare it to that of a friend. “Well, Billy’s dad bought him a bike,” was the surest way to not get a bike. He felt we all have our own life with our own unique goals, trials, ups & downs–to compare was just plain nonsense. I can just hear him. “Live and thrive in your own life.” This quote speaks to just that. Life really is greenest where we water it.



Pecorino & Black Pepper Crostini

20141226-065112.jpg I wrote a few weeks ago about using leftover baguettes for croutons. Well, I am at it again. We seem to always have left-over pieces of baguette around, even more so during the Holidays. Today they become a super easy base for crostini. Cut pieces about a half to a quarter inch thick. Lay them out on a baking sheet. With a pastry brush, layer on a thin amount of extra virgin olive oil. Next, sprinkle on finely ground Pecorino Romano cheese, then grind over fresh cracked black pepper. Put in a 350 degree oven for 10 minutes to let the cheese melt. Then take out of the oven to cool a bit. This is where you can get creative and top with a host of things. Try spreading on herbed chèvre for a tangy treat. Or top with a dollop of store bought tapenade. Or a sliced tomato. A mound of tuna or chicken salad. Truly, whatever sounds interesting to you. The crostini become a great base for so many things. Lovely to serve with cocktails. A great way to get culinarily creative and use up those baguettes all at the same time.



Merry Christmas!

20141225-065015.jpg From the Watson Sive family & the Watson Kennedy family, we wish all of you a very Merry Christmas!

Fun waking up this morning in the Pike Place Market–our tradition these last 10 years. We are staying at the divine Beecher’s Loft. Look for a post on that in the coming weeks.

Sending much love from Seattle,




Perfect Timing

20141224-075007.jpg And just like that, overnight, we awoke to this beautiful sight. The kitchen just seems to be doing a happy dance too. All week long I walked by the table in the kitchen just hoping it would open in time for Christmas–the amaryllis doing a swan like dance for all of us to enjoy.

Both shops are open today at 10, so if you need any last minute gifts, we are here to help. Wrapped for you, as well. The First & Spring location will close at 5 and the Market shop will close at 6.

Happy, Happy Holidays to you,



Layering Your Dining Table

As many of you will be setting your dining tables in the coming days for visiting family and Holiday meals, I thought a few thoughts on the topic might spark a bit of creativity. This is an often asked about topic, which stirs nervousness and doubt/fear in many. Setting a table should ultimately be enjoyable for you the host and bottom line, you should like the table you have set. My biggest piece of advice is think of it like getting dressed in the morning. Layer your table as you would your outfit. Mix and match things until you think they work. Add something a bit unexpected so it gives visual interest. Candles to me are a huge necessity. They add flicker and drama, easily placed here and there among all the other things. Just keep them unscented so they don’t interfere with the scent of the glorious food you have prepared. Flowers should be kept low so guests don’t have to fight with them to see one another. Keep them simple. If you don’t have a full setting of one kind of china, mix & match, but just try and keep things unified. I love tables with various patterns. Serve sparkling water at the table, adding a slice of lemon or orange to the glasses for a little citrusy twist. And lastly, once you have sat down at your own table, enjoy every moment of your hard work both setting the table and making the meal. Take a deep breathe, give yourself a little pat on the back, don’t let that bossy Aunt or Uncle get to you, and have just the best time at your own table.













Ted’s Tip No. 24

20141222-082651.jpg My tip today is centered on a last minute gift if you are in need. It also applies to that person on your list who has most of everything and does not need a darn thing. I love giving, as I love equally receiving, a yearly magazine subscription. Design, food, people, to name a few–are just some of the things covered in some really great monthly magazines. Just think, your gift will be enjoyed and you will be thought of a dozen times during the course of the year. That is one great gift that just keeps on giving!