I know many of you have been waiting for my annual posts about my container garden. Well, I got a late start this year, due to the move to the new house, and a bunch of traveling. But I finally had the chance to get things going and I am excited to announce I have gone from containers to a raised bed in my new back yard.

The raised bed was already there – the previous owners used it to stage a fire pit, which was silly as the walls are wood. I filled it with some fresh new soil and planted some plants I scored from a local nursery. I still have some room in there and will add to it when I have a chance.

I stuck with things I have had success with in the past – a few varieties of tomatoes, various peppers, squash, eggplant, and herbs like basil, rosemary, and parsley. I also planted a ton of sunflowers around the yard and hope the squirrels don’t get them all – I would like to have something to show why Kansas is The Sunflower State.

I’ll keep you posted on my progress.

Every desk needs a focal point. Too often these days the computer rules the average desk. However, you can really class things up with a nice desk pad, like these nice Desk Pads I found from the fine folks at Parvum Opus.

About the Desk Pads from Parvum Opus:

“Our rectangular desk pads provide the perfect spot to write a letter or park your laptop, protecting both the laptop and your desk from scratches. Each desk pad is carefully crafted using fine paper framed and backed in Italian book cloth. Custom sizes and papers are available.”

Find the Desk Pads from Parvum Opus here.

See all the fine handmade products from Parvum Opus here.

…and all of a sudden it’s summertime, at least meteorologically speaking, and there is plenty of things to see, do, and FIND – so stay tuned, it’s going to be a lot of fun.

The little kid in me is loving the Metal Airplane Construction Kit I found from the fine folks at Norman & Jules – which is reminiscent of the classic Erector Sets of my childhood.

About the Metal Airplane Construction Kit from Norman & Jules:

“Perfect for little builders, aspiring pilots, or both! This construction set will fly your little one’s imagination high. Made in Germany from high-quality steel, this kit includes step by step instructions and all tools needed to complete the sleek, streamlined aircraft. Directions are illustration, and simple and intuitive to follow for little tinkers eight years and older.”

Find the Metal Airplane Construction Kit from Norman & Jules here.

See all the cool things for kids from Norman & Jules here.

Growing up in New England, one of the more curious regional words that I heard a lot was “tonic” – which was the generic term for soda – like Coca Cola was a kind of tonic. I always thought it sounded like medicine, which is probably the root of it. Anyway, tonics, as in the type of thing that can help your health, are making a comeback and I am all over the trend, which is why I love Tonic – Delicious and Natural Remedies to Boost Your Health by Tanita de Ruijt.

About Tonic – Delicious and Natural Remedies to Boost Your Health by Tanita de Ruijt:

In Tonic, Tanita de Ruijt will have you pillaging your kitchen cupboards to make surprisingly effective – and inexpensive – remedies to cure whatever ails you. Inspired primarily by traditional medicine and wisdom from the East, these recipes have been carefully crafted to support your body’s natural defences, and keep you feeling good on a daily basis. Recipes include the immune-boosting Turmeric Tonic, to more eclectic Love Potions, Salvation Shrubs and Make-Your-Own Probiotics. Including a helpful ailment index plus an extensive medicinal guide to everyday herbs and spices, Tonic offers all-natural, effective ways to treat basic complaints quickly, safely, and effectively at home.

Tonic – Delicious and Natural Remedies to Boost Your Health by Tanita de Ruijt is available from Amazon and other fine booksellers everywhere.

I am fortunate to be in New Hampshire today, extending my Memorial Day weekend, and I stopped by my favorite spot – the view of Mount Chocorua across the lake as seen from Tamworth, NH. I love the little cloud that just passed the iconic granite peak, and the fact that the spring green has not yet made it’s way to the top of the treeline quite yet. A stunning scene that never disappoints.

We should all be ashamed that there are so many people going hungry in the richest country on the planet. The fine folks at Feeding America are doing all they can to help stop hunger, but they need our help.

About Feeding America:

“Our mission is to feed America’s hungry through a nationwide network of member food banks and engage our country in the fight to end hunger. With the support of our generous partners, the Feeding America network is meeting the needs of families across the country and helping them find the strength to move forward and flourish. Our partners help to provide meals to more than 46 million Americans each year.”

Learn more about Feeding America and how you can help here.

The fine folks at Sea Island Forge have the best Hand-Forged Fire Pokers you can find anywhere and they are the perfect accent for your outside fire pit this season.

About the Hand-Forged Fire Pokers from Sea Island Forge:

“Crafted from hand-forged steel each fire poker is a true work of art. Both beautiful and practical, our Fire Pokers are crafted from hand-hammered round bar and available in three classic decorative styles: Large Acanthus Leaf, Twisted Handle and Lucite Handle. Don’t forget that you’ll need a poker to lift off a hot spark screen.”

Find the Hand-Forged Fire Pokers from Sea Island Forge here.

Learn more about Sea Island Forge here.


OK, I have been featuring a few books of dog portraits lately. Sue me. But they are all great. This week, I am obsessed with Daphne and Daisy: Pawtraits of Sausage Style by Rachel Burke.

About Daphne and Daisy: Pawtraits of Sausage Style by Rachel Burke:

“Daphne and Daisy are sausage dog sisters who love to dress up. When they can find time between their busy schedule of napping and barking at things that aren’t there, Daphne and Daisy pursue their two passions – crafting and dressing up. They are inspired by the pages of their favorite magazines, especially Dogue and Barkers Bazaar, to create signature looks that allow them to stand out from the pack. Daphne and Daisy: Pawtraits of Sausage Style is a collection of their favorite style themes, from Flowers, Pom Poms, Shiny Things, Sunglasses and Hats, as well as their opinion on all things fashion: that more is more. Filled with funny photographs and furry flair, this book will delight dog and fashion enthusiasts everywhere!”

My sister has a very cute sausage dog, and is a very good photographer – which makes this the perfect gift to inspire her.

Daphne and Daisy: Pawtraits of Sausage Style by Rachel Burke is available from Amazon and other fine booksellers everywhere.


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