Wanted: The Tooth Fairy

The tooth fairy forgot to show last night. Damn that little fairy...what is wrong with that little winged bitch?   Doesn't she know I'm going to pay the price at the bus stop when my daughter tells her friend she lost her tooth and the friend says, "What did the tooth fairy bring you?" and my daughter replies, "Nothing".

The friends face quickly turns to me with a look of utter disgust. No words were spoken, but I got the message loud and clear. If I ever catch that fairy, I am going to wring her little fairy neck.

Beach Treasure Jars

We are finally settling back into school and work after returning from vacation at the beach.  This time, we were in Ocean Isle Beach, NC.  This quiet little beach town 30 miles north of Myrtle Beach, SC is another one of our favorite summer getaways. 

Doug and I were able to sneak out most mornings for a run while the kiddos got some cuddle time with Gammy and Pappy.  It was during those runs that we found some of our beach treasures. 

We found some unusual things this year, but I haven't had a chance to get photos yet, so I thought I'd share some of our findings from last year.  There were tons of sand dollars scattered across the beach and we had a lot of fun collecting them.  OIB also has quite an assortment of unusual shells.

In these photos, we placed some sand, shells and sea glass in Mason Jars, the kids and I hot glued the sand dollars to the lids and tied a piece of raffia around the top.  We put tea candles inside the mason jars.  They look great on the deck at night.

We also made some driftwood bundles that I have placed around the house. 

I just hate letting go of summer and having these little reminders of summer spread throughout our home helps me get through the winter a little easier. 

What does your family do to remember your summer vacations?

Loving Southern Livings Lakeside Retreat

The long rock on this "rock island" is a diving board.
Photo Courtesy of Southern Living Magazine
I've always been a beach girl, however the latest issue of my FAVORITE magazine EVER.....SOUTHERN LIVING features the most spectacular Lakeside garden I've ever seen.

This place is a playground for big kids and little kids.

Truly, I don't normally get THIS excited about outdoor spaces, but this one keeps me up at night.  I love every inch of it. 

This table sits at the same level as the water
Photo Courtesy of Southern Living Magazine

LOVE LOVE LOVE the natural wine cooler created from water in the lake.
Photo Courtesy of Southern Living Magazine

Mr. Scott, if you ever read this....I promise Doug and I would bring some REALLY good bottles of wine to add to your table cooler if we could just come and play in your garden.

Inspired by the Island

The girls and I just returned from one of my favorite places on earth...Stone Harbor, NJ.  Our family has vacationed there every summer since I was a little girl and each time we come over the bridge and see the big blue water tower with STONE HARBOR written on the side, I feel like I've returned home.  Poor Doug was stuck at home with a big deadline so us girls had a little getaway.  (and boy did we have fun!) 

(No timeouts or yelling for 9 days!!!! Maybe junk food and ice cream on the beach had a little something to do with it.)

The island has changed quite a bit since I was little.  The streets used to be lined with little beach cottages with gravel yards.  Today is a completely different story, the houses are new and VERY BIG and I drool over the landscaping in the yards.  I've tried to take pictures and recreate the landscaping in our little Ellicott City yard, but I haven't been able to get there yet....ahh maybe one day...for now...I'll just dream....

(I want to know what is behind that gate covered by the trumpet vine! This path is just ASKING me to take a peek.)

This is the house owned by the Hoys....they are known for their huge 5 and 10 store on 96th street.  It is a kids dream world.  Filled with all kinds of beach trinkets, towels, jewelry and just about anything you can imagine.  I love the mandavilla vines they have on the top balcony. 

The man who owns this house builds his own bird houses out of natural materials he finds on the beach. I have counted 9 bird houses on his property, but I'm sure there are more....he has them tucked all over the yard.
                                                                 Another tempting gate...... 

and then there is Poseidon
The beach always gets under my skin and when the summer is over, I hang on to every last grain of sand in my sneakers.  So instead of letting it go, I searched for some beach inspired design items for my home.  Unfortunately, I won't be making any purchases in the near future....but one has to dream!
16 piece table in marine at Cottage and Bungalow

Adams Medium Wall Tricorn with Chimney at Cottage and Bungalow

Bodega Distressed White Driftwood Lamp at Cottage and Bungalow

Coral Orange Pillow at Cottage Coastal

Crab Claw Tote at Cottage Coastal

Easton Chair and Stool at Cottage and Bungalow

Metropolitan Pendant at Cottage and Bungalow

Navigators Desk in Ivory at Cottage and Bungalow

Navy Leaf Pillow at Cottage Coastal

Spiral Conch at Seaweed Designs

I hope you will be inspired by these beach inspired items and carry a little sun and sand into your homes.

Make This!!!

I don't normally post recipes, but I made this one from Southern Living Magazine and it is delicious and I felt like it should be shared. This is a must have topper for summer salad.  I poured it over a salad of fresh greens, carrots, broccoli, fresh peaches, raisins and feta cheese.  Since our oldest daughter, Madison is allergic to nuts, we didn't include them, but it would be great with walnuts, almonds or pine nuts.

1/2 Jar seedless blackberry preserves

1/4 c red wine vinegar
6 fresh basil leaves
1 garlic clove, sliced
1/2 teas salt
1/2 teas seasoned pepper
3/4 cup vegetable oil

In blender or food processor, combine blackberry preserves, red wine vinegar and next 4 ingredients. Slowly add vegetable oil while blender is on until smooth.