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Friday, July 31, 2015

Baked Salmon

Salmon is my favorite fish to eat! There are so many benefits to eating it. It is packed with vitamins A, B and D as well as calcium. It also has those wonderful omega 3 fatty acids that help your brain work better and improve memory (see this article about the benefits of eating salmon).

I have been on a salmon "kick" for the last several weeks. I don't know why but maybe my body is craving those omega fatty acids. I have enjoyed it. Below is my quick and simple recipe for baked salmon. I hope you enjoy it!




My salmon at home



Baked Salmon:

~ Purchase a salmon of your choice and size

~ Pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees

~ Place salmon on parchment paper or greased baking pan

~ Sprinkle some olive oil on it (use as much as you wish)

~ Sprinkle salt, pepper, Weber Grill Kickin Chicken (I love this stuff), and then some basil.

~ I then place it in the oven for about 30 minutes and voila. Dinner is served!



(photo via Mrs. Shockley)




Wednesday, July 29, 2015

The Flower Bed

This spring has been wonderful so far! My husband and I did quite a bit of work this year. We planted some lilac bushes (see my entry here about those), gladiolus, dahlias, lilies and hydrangeas.

We make sure that after we finish house work and dinner that we go outside and enjoy our flowers. It has been such a wonderful blessing! Even my step~sons come out and take a seat.



Our hydrangeas 







The gladiolus 






Our hummingbird feeder








The lilies; the rabbits would not stop eating these!
It was horrible!






I had to cut them down and bring them in the house.
Oh well, at least I still get to enjoy them.






(photos via Mrs. Shockley)





Monday, July 27, 2015

Ways to Uncomplicate Your Life

I love lists! I have a to-do list for home, work, bills, clothes, you name it! So when I find lists on how to organize my life and how to bring elegance into my home, I always feel as though I have hit the jack pot! Last year I posted an entry called 100 Ways to be Elegant which was written by the same person who wrote 100 Ways to Uncomplicate Your life. These lists are wonderful and give great insight on how to bring ideas into your home and give great revelation on how to deal with the issues of life. Here are a few of my favorites from that list...


#faded vignette...

1. Don't try to read other people's minds.

2. Stick to your budget

3. Start saving and investing every week, no matter how little you can spare.

4. Don't try to be friends with everyone. Cultivate closer relationships with fewer people.

5. Don't try to do business with everyone. Identify your target client and take very good care of them.

6. Before getting angry, ask yourself if it will really matter in 20 years.

7. Focus on being a good person, not on pleasing others

8. Make a weekly menu, and shop for only those items at the market

9. If you're holding on to a ridiculous grudge, let it go

10. Clean your house weekly, so that it doesn't become too large a chore.

11. Do your best at work, or at school.

12. Cook simple meals

13. Don't try to keep up with the Joneses

14. Pay off your car before buying a new one.

15. Organize your desk at the office.

16. Spend your time with nice people

17. Avoid drama

18. Refuse to gossip, or talk behind other people's backs

19. Ask nicely for what you need and want.

20. Walk 10,000 steps per day to help your heart.

21. Leave work at work.

22. Don't ENVY others

23. Weed your garden weekly

24. Wash your car weekly

25. You don't need to be best friends with work colleagues, but build respectful partnerships.

26. Return emails and phone messages promptly

27. Schedule in free time.

28. Start you diet on September 1, rather than January 1, so that you won't also have holiday pounds to lose.

29. Take care of any health issues or concerns.

30. Don't let your imagination run away with you

31. Let go of perfection in yourself

32. Drink more water.

33. Eat more salmon

34. Wear you hair in a classic, easy to care for style.

35. Finish what you start

36. Wear classic clothes and shoes that never go out of style.

37. Create a daily routine.

38. Have a 1, 5, 10 and 20 year plan for your financial and life goals.

39. Slow down

40. If a relationship is over, let it go.

Written by DeeAnne from Live the Charmed Life


photo via Pinterest 




Friday, July 24, 2015

Vintage Shopping with the Antiques Diva

I love finding great blogs! Especially, when those blogs have great videos about antique shopping. I don't know if you have heard of the Antiques Diva but you should definitely add her to your list of blogs to read.  If you love Europe and love antiques you will really enjoy her blog.

Toma has one of the largest antique touring companies in Europe. Her and the other "divas" will take you on a tour in Europe to purchase wonderful antique pieces for your home. I love watching her videos of her tours and you will too!



Toma Clark Haines 
The Antiques Diva 











Image via Google

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

What is Poise?

Being a lady is a missing quality in our world today. If you are not half naked and rude then it seems that you get any respect. Even women don't seem to respect other women when they choose to act with some dignity. Sometimes I feel as though the world is going mad! But I refuse to be apart of the decline in manners today.

I came across this blog called Elegant Woman. Once I started reading her articles I could not stop. My favorite one so far is What is Poise? How to be a Woman with Poise. The definition of poise is composure and dignity of manner. It is the graceful and elegant bearing in a person.

The elegant bearing in a person. Wow, just hearing that makes you want to become an elegant woman.  I know do. There was one paragraph in the article that stayed with me.....

Being poised is not just having composure, but also having dignity as well.
A poised person has elegant mannerisms. Her movements of her body...have a lot of style. The way she walks, talks, carries herself is fluid and gentle, yet strong and purposeful.
Have you ever been in the lobby of a hotel and suddenly you can't help but notice a very beautiful woman walking in?
You can't help but watch as she gets out of the car, smiles at the doorman, and say thank you.
She walks to the front door already opened for her.
She pauses at the entrance, her eyes scanning the room.
Her eyes light up as she spots her date and walks towards the him in a bubble of poise.
She is immaculately dressed, and exudes a sense of calm confidence. She is unaware of the impact of her presence and how she changed the atmosphere of the room. She made heads turn without knowing simply with her poise. 


Classic, white pant suit.


Image via Pinterest 

Monday, July 20, 2015

French Style

I am always looking for ways to bring beauty into my home on a budget. A lot of times it takes great imagination to see past things. My friend's say that I have that gift but I think that I am still learning. While reading French Style, I came across these great tips on how to continue my education on creating beauty.


~ Keep it simple if you really want to dazzle. Understatement can truly speak volumes.


<3 Of course, this is in France, my home land. Mediterranean style and plants continue to be my inspiration for our backyard in my adoptive California.

~ Look for older items on the street or at markets. You can transform a throwaway into a masterpiece.


Is your decorating style more French, more British or more American?  Take this simple test and see :)

~ Choose materials that are easy to use and easy to update.

~ Look at the light in your house and play with color to achieve dramatic results. The use of mirrors can add both light and depth to a room.


How To Decorate Like a Parisian from apartment therepy. Get the tips in how to decoarate in the Parisian style. I think the tips are great but ignore the bit about keeping walls white. Europeans embracve color that we north americans are terrified of.

~ Utilize fabrics, patterns and textures that match the palette of your home.


French Rustic Chic Bedroom | Irvine Home Blog ᘡղbᘠ

~ With collections and relics remember less is more. Organize with a theme in mind to make a statement.


kitchen with glazed white cabinetry


~  Bring natural elements into your home buy employing fresh flowers, large windows and open doors.



Text by Kristin J. Webb-Hollering, French Style Magazine 
Images via Pinterest 

Friday, July 17, 2015

Small Successes






The quality of your life comes down to the quality of your habits. No success can happen overnight though it sometimes seems so. Every success is made out of little things, little habits which you do regularly every single day, every week.
Success is not that difficult if you decide to take one step at a time. Doing little things, small habits consistently with all your heart makes you efficient every single day and the compound effect of doing so will bring success in your life.



(photo via This is Glamorous)

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Antique Shopping in Belgium

I love watching Youtube videos in the morning while I am walking on my treadmill. I recently saw this video from One Kings Lane. The co-founder went antique shopping with designer Bunny Williams in Belgium. It is absolutely stupendous! Enjoy the video.




Co-founder of One Kings Lane Susan Feldman with designer Bunny Williams











Image via Google

Monday, July 13, 2015

Buying Luxury Bags

I started buying designer bags around 2010. I was influenced by my mother in law. I had just attended a giant flea market and of course they were selling replica handbags. I purchased about 4 replica Coach bags. I was so excited about these purchases that I wanted to show my mother in law.

She looked at the bags and asked how much I had paid for them. I told her and she looked at me and said, " For what you spent on these four bags you could have taken your money and added about $50 more and purchased the real thing". When she said that it hit me like a ton of bricks because honestly, she was right. 

The quality of the replica bags does not and can never compare to the "real" thing. So I took my mother in law's advice and started purchasing quality handbags. That was 5 years ago and I have not looked back since. I love having my higher quality handbags. 

I have Coach, 3 Kate Spade, 3 Michael Kors, and one Dooney & Bourke. I have recently added Louis Vuitton to my collection!!! I am so excited about my Louis!!! My grandmother had them in the 80's but when she died in 1999 her bags came up missing. We still don't know where they are to this day. 

Tradesy helped me in accomplishing my goal of owning a Louis Vuitton. Tradesy is a company that allows sellers and buyers to purchase and sell designer accessories. Tradesy stands by their company policy which is " knockoff's are a no, no"! I spoke with a rep twice before making my purchase. I also communicated with the seller. She was absolutely wonderful. The process was easy and the payment arrangements are great! If you visit Tradesy and have your eye on a beautiful handbag you don't have it pay it all at once. You can opt for the payment plan option with Affirm. 

It is painless and easy. I highly recommend it if that is the way you want to go. But I do want to say that it is credit driven so if all is well in that arena for you then start your payment plan and enjoy your luxury handbag! 




My Louis Vuitton Sac Plat tote that I purchased from Tradesy. 
It is from 2008 and in wonderful condition. 




These are other items that I love on Tradesy






Photos via Tradesy and my own