When I turned my attention to reading summer novels I did a few searches and one author kept popping up for best summer reads: Elin Hilderbrand. I had heard of Ms. Hilderbrand but had never read any of her books. Ms.Hilderbrand has made a career, and a huge following of devoted readers, by pretty much delivering a summer novel every year. So I figured, how could a million Elvis fans be wrong? So I started with 28 Summers, which even by the titled promised to be the perfect “beach read.” Not the type of book I am usually drawn to, 28 Summers was just what I thought it was going to be and once I convinced myself to give in to the genre, I found it to be a enjoyable diversion.

About 28 Summers by Elin Hilderbrand:

“When Mallory Blessing’s son, Link, receives deathbed instructions from his mother to call a number on a slip of paper in her desk drawer, he’s not sure what to expect. But he certainly does not expect Jake McCloud to answer. It’s the late spring of 2020 and Jake’s wife, Ursula DeGournsey, is the frontrunner in the upcoming Presidential election. There must be a mistake, Link thinks. How do Mallory and Jake know each other? Flash back to the sweet summer of 1993: Mallory has just inherited a beachfront cottage on Nantucket from her aunt, and she agrees to host her brother’s bachelor party. Cooper’s friend from college, Jake McCloud, attends, and Jake and Mallory form a bond that will persevere—through marriage, children, and Ursula’s stratospheric political rise—until Mallory learns she’s dying.”

28 Summers by Elin Hilderbrand is available from Amazon and fine booksellers everywhere.

I love the simple elegance of the Peugeot Black Olivier Pepper Mill I found from the fine folks at San Francisco’s March.

About the Peugeot Black Olivier Pepper Mill:

“Peugeot Paris has been making mills since the 1840s and defines the classic, timeless pepper mill shape. This model has the U-Select grinding system for precision grinding; a double helix shaped row of teeth to guide and hold the peppercorns/salt granules for the perfect grind. Its patented treatment protects the steel from corrosion and wear. This mill has a beech wood body with a black lacquer finish. Made in France.”

Find the Peugeot Black Olivier Pepper Mill from March.

Visit March online.

I love popping over to see what the fine folks at Rifle Paper Co. are doing. Today, when I checked out their site, I was treated to their Dog Days of Summer Art Print – which I thought was perfect timing as we start August.

About the Dog Days of Summer Art Print (and all their prints) from Rifle Paper Co.:

“Wake up your walls or shelves with our illustrated art prints, which are created from original gouache paintings.”

See the Dog Days of Summer Art Print from Rifle Paper Co.

Visit Rifle Paper Co. online.

During these dog days of summer I really wished I had a pool with a cabana. Not because I want to swim, but so I have an excuse to decorate said cabana with the Cabana Stripe Pillow I found from the fine folks at Johanna Howard Home.

About the Cabana Stripe Pillow from Johanna Howard Home:

“Contrasting stripes make our Cabana Stripe Pillow a timeless classic. Equally suited for the beach house or your living room, these are woven by hand from the finest cotton yarn. Using a centuries old backstrap loom technique, our artisans create something that will last for generations.”

Find the Cabana Stripe Pillow from Johanna Howard Home.

Visit Johanna Howard Home online.

I love hand made crafts and nothing is better than a time-honored hand crafted basket from Africa. Thankfully we have the fine folks at Baba Tree Basket Co. who “offer unique, handwoven African baskets. Wide selection of colors, styles and sizes.”

I like The Baba Tree Basket Co. Market Basket Collection:

“Beautiful, durable, useful – our market baskets are what this business was built on and will live with you for years. Choose from the classics – Oval, Round and the Nyariga from XL to tiny suit all your needs and easily match back with mum or dad! Perfect as plastic-free shoppers for your weekly veggie haul, popular for picnics, brilliant at the beach and super for storage all over the house. Our home is full of them as you can imagine.”

Check out The Baba Tree Basket Co’s Market Basket Collection.

Visit The Baba Tree Basket Co. online.

Summer is in full swing which means my reading has turned largely to novels. So I have been looking for books that are breezy reads but also hold my interest. I was intrigued when I read the synopsis of Dear Mrs. Bird: A Novel by AJ Pearce. A novel. Check. Takes place in wartime London during the blitz. Check. Likeable characters and a charming narrative. Check. All equaling a perfect summer read.

About Dear Mrs. Bird: A Novel by AJ Pearce:

“Emmeline Lake and her best friend Bunty are doing their bit for the war effort and trying to stay cheerful, despite the German planes making their nightly raids. Emmy dreams of becoming a Lady War Correspondent, and when she spots a job advertisement in the newspaper she seizes her chance; but after a rather unfortunate misunderstanding, she finds herself typing letters for the formidable Henrietta Bird, renowned advice columnist of Woman’s Friend magazine. Mrs. Bird is very clear: letters containing any Unpleasantness must go straight into the bin. But as Emmy reads the desperate pleas from women who many have Gone Too Far with the wrong man, or can’t bear to let their children be evacuated, she begins to secretly write back to the readers who have poured out their troubles.”

Dear Mrs. Bird: A Novel by AJ Pearce is available from Amazon and fine booksellers everywhere.

In the category of something I did know I needed but just had to have when I saw it, is the 4 roll Desktop Tape Dispenser I found from the fine folks at WMS & Co. Seriously, who doesn’t need constant access to four colors of tape at any moment?

About the 4 roll Desktop Tape Dispenser from WMS & Co.:

“For years, people who visited co-founder JP Williams’ desk couldn’t stop ogling the tape dispenser he’d found in Switzerland. Monolithic, vividly red and emblazoned with cautionary graphics (it’s seriously sharp!), this efficient workhorse has an industrial allure. It holds 4 standard large core rolls of tape and is heavy enough that you can pull and cut with one hand.”

Find the 4 roll Desktop Tape Dispenser from WMS & Co.

Visit WMS & Co. online.

Do you love Nutella? Well, wait until you try Fix & Fogg’s Chocolate Hazelnut Butter I found available from Neighborhood Goods.

About Fix & Fogg’s Chocolate Hazelnut Butter:

“This is what spoons were made for. If you’re a fan of nutty chocolately goodness, buckle up, because we’ve brought together the glorious combination of golden roasted hazelnuts and the richest chocolate. Our Chocolate Hazelnut butter has over 120 hazelnuts in every jar, contains absolutely no palm oil, is naturally vegan and is made with velvety smooth chocolate. Importantly for us, our hazelnut supplier is a family-owned business located in Trabzon, northern Turkey. It’s an approved participating company with Fair Labor Association, which has a clear code of conduct against the use of child and forced labour. The FLA conducts independent assessments on its members – including at farm-level.”

Find Fix & Fogg’s Chocolate Hazelnut Butter from Neighborhood Goods.

Visit Neighborhood Goods online.

It’s that time of year when if you don’t have a pool, you are dreaming about having one, and if you do have a pool, you are dreaming about how to make it better. With Splash: The Art of the Swimming Pool by Annie Kelly & Tim Street-Porter you will be treated to “the inspiration for anyone designing, or dreaming about, their own pool.”

About Splash: The Art of the Swimming Pool by Annie Kelly & Tim Street-Porter:

“This celebration of the style, design, and joy that pools bring to us brims with over 200 glamorous photographs. It is organized by swimming pool design–from glimmering infinity pools with a view of the ocean to dramatic cascading waterfall pools and those in lush garden settings. Ranging from beautifully landscaped backyards to dramatic beaches and tropical paradise surroundings, the stunning pool locales show creative examples of pools as architecture and organic forms. In the mix are seductive pools owned by such celebrities as Cher and Dianne Keaton and leading designers Bunny Williams and Carolyne Roehm, as well as masterpieces by famed architects Frank Lloyd Wright, Richard Neutra, and Luis Barragán. Splash concludes with a section on poolside elements, from tiled steps, patterned surfaces, and Jacuzzis to pool houses with outdoor showers, landscaping, furnishings, and much more. Every example evokes the enduring and irresistible appeal of the swimming pool.”

Splash: The Art of the Swimming Pool by Annie Kelly & Tim Street-Porter is available from Amazon and other fine booksellers everywhere.


For many of us our workplace is pretty much anywhere we happen to be at the moment. I have been working from four or five separate areas in my own house. The problem is when I am not working it can often feel like I’m living in an office. That’s why I love the Desktop Toolbox I found from the fine folks at Present & Correct – where you can pack up your office supplies when you are finished working in an elegant box.

About the Desktop Toolbox from Present & Correct:

“Hi-ho off to work with this smart wooden toolbox, handcrafted in Japan. It measures 300x160x75mm and has a removable tray inside. Plenty of space for pens, pencils, rulers, erasers, clips & scissors.”

About the Desktop Toolbox from Present & Correct.

Visit Present & Correct online.

You’re welcome!

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