Succulent Love

Succulent Love

  Succulents are amongst my favorite plants.  They’re rockin’ it at the top of the popularity charts the last few years.  For good reason.  Besides having loads of personality, they’re easy to take care of, cut & propagate and they’re wicked hard to kill.

Succulents are a group of plants that store water in their thick leaves and stems. Some of the more common types include Jade & Snake plants, Cactus and Aloe.  I love low-growing ones such as Hen and Chicks (a.k.a. Sempervivum or Echeveria if you want to be fancy pants).

I just picked up this vintage Maxwell House coffee can at a Yard Sale for a dollar.  In these parts we call them Tag Sales – I know – we’re weird.  Hitting Tag Sales together is my all-time favorite date with Mr. Hungry.  I came home & filled it with potting soil.  I snipped off a couple plants on the deck and stuck’em in.  Isn’t it cute?  Super simple. A dollar.

coffee can succulent with words

I probably would have passed that coffee can by, but I stopped at a funky food truck on The Cape a couple weeks ago and got inspired.

succulents-rusty-box-songbird logo

 I wouldn’t have thought to use that rusty old tool box – would you? It looks great!

Succulent Strawberry Pot and recipe bosThe one with the orange flowers is planted in a stainless canister just like those my Mom had for flour & sugar when I was a kid.  Who-da’ thunk?  And those there in the recipe box and strawberry pot are lovely too.  If it were me, I’d like to see them in something with a little more color variation.  But that’s just me, micro-analyzing.

I needed to buy a gift for a 10th anniversary party this summer.  I was perusing shelves at Homegoods and found this metal planter on the clearance rack.  I stopped at a garden shop and bought one big succulent to start with.  I trimmed some of my own plants to fill in.

happy-10th-planter-with-lake logoTurned out cute – No?

In lieu of a card (the cost of cards is reeediculous these days isn’t it?), I made the little pennant swag to stick into it.

happy-10th-mini-banner-up-close logoI used colored paper, heavy thread and beads I had around the house and attached it to wooden coffee stirrers.  It took less time to whip together than stopping at a drug store to pick out a card.

Last weekend I found this sweet blue cup at a consignment shop for less than $2.!  It’s an actual planter with a drain hole in the bottom.

succulent-in-blue-cup logoPlanting it up was a quick mini project.  We have a bird bath on the deck overflowing with a variety of plants and succulents.  I took out the scissors and gave it a little “hair cut”.

Bird Bath PlanterI just clipped off some of the pieces hanging over the sides.

Succulent ClippingI stripped off the lower leaves and trimmed the stem down a bit.

Succulent Clipping Trimmed

Then I stuck ‘em in the dirt.  You can even just stick leaves right in the dirt too.

succulent-in-blue-cup-from-above logoDon’t forget to water them once you’re done.  They don’t need much – go light.  Outside on a hot summer day I water almost every day (lightly), but they sit in full sun. Those kept inside all year get watered lightly just once a week.

I was given the “Pour Me a Drink” pot for Mothers’ Day.

drink-planters logoIt turns out I have a little theme going on here.

 I’ve had succulents in and around the house for years.

A couple years ago I bought the plants in this one at a Yard/Tag Sale & potted them.

082014 low succulents in blue pot LR

Mr. Hungry cut me a slice of wood to sit the planter on.

Here are a couple more living inside.  Jade on the left, Snake plant on the right.

082014 jade and snake plant 3

I love the dimension and texture they add to a space.

 Planting succulents is easy and instantly gratifying.  Maybe you have a piece of pottery, an old boot or some other funky container to fill and add personality to a corner of your domain.

Have Fun!

coffee-can-succulent logo

Come back soon.  I’m so glad you stopped by.  

love you ~donna

p.s.  If you haven’t subscribed to receive email updates when I post something new, why don’tcha’?

I Want S’More Mini S’Mores

I Want S’More Mini S’Mores

 

We didn’t even know that this past Sunday – August 10th – was National S’Mores Day.

And what did we just so happen to have?

S’Mores!

HONEY-MAID-Smores-8551

   via

We had friends over for dinner and with three kids it was the logical choice.  Boy, were we lucky blessed or what, with S’Mores for dessert and a Super Moon (biggest full moon of the year) around the fire pit on a stellar summer night?

     Along with traditional S’Mores, we tried something new.  I just heard about Mini S’Mores, using Teddy Grahams, mini marshmallows & chocolate chips.  What a fun twist on the old favorite!  Not only that, but I only indulged in one teeny tiny little mini S’More and it was just enough.  Ooops…now that I think about it, it might have been two.

(FYI: One Mini S’more has less than 17 calories, using 2 Teddy Grahams, One Mini Marshmallow & one regular chocolate chip!…Yes, I did the math.)

     We decided to have them again the next night so I could take pictures for you all. The kids had stayed overnight, so they were more than happy to comply.  I “made” them act as my hand models, holding mini S’Mores in front of the fire.  Good times.

 Mini Smore on skewer over fire    Mini Smore ingredientsMini Smore front

  We used thin bamboo skewers for “roasting” the mini marshmallows.  They toast up in a matter of seconds.  Heck, you could toast one up over a candle any day of the year.

Mini Smore with M&Ms

We took out peanut butter and M&M’s to add to the mix too.

We’ve had the same fire pit on the deck for 14 years, ever since we first moved to this place.

cropped-house-and-deck-flowers-2014-026.jpg

See it up there with the red flower pot on top?  It sits there as a functional table when we’re not having a fire.

Here’s a look at it from the other direction.

2014-08-12 09[1].30.29

     My Mr. Hungry Handy Guy built the tiled table top to fit over it.  It’s pretty and practical.  I love it.

But back to S’Mores.  This wasn’t the first time we put a spin on tradition.  Last summer we roasted “Peep” S’Mores.  I bought packages of bright yellow marshmallow Peeps off the Easter clearance rack & saved them for 4 months – just for that reason.  I don’t know if I’d do that again.  Those neon colored sugar chicks become molten lava if you happen to get any on you.

Peep SMore

Smore Peep finger in ice cropped

ouch

If you’re looking for other ideas and inspiration, I stumbled on this {Huffington Post article} on Grown-up S’Mores. You MUST check this out.  My favorite on the list to try would be one made with Nutella & Bacon!!!  Whaaaaat?!?  Did I just hear an angel sing?  The perfect summer campfire dessert was just blown out of the water.

So even though National S’Mores Day has passed, don’t you wanna run right out and get yo’self some provisions?

S'More Mini on a Candle

This could be you.

Do you have a favorite variation to share with the rest of us?  I want S’More.

Love you. ~donna

Anddd We Have a Winner!

I can’t wait to give this book away.

image

The Nesting Place by Myquillyn Smith has been one of the most helpful books I’ve read in a while.
Like I said before, I’m on vaca and pecking this out on the phone. I’d love to provide links to sources but it ain’t happenin’ today. I snapped a couple
pics from inside the book…

image

image

There’s only one winner in the Give-Away. For the rest of yous-guys I say go get yourself a copy. It relates to much more than Home Decor. Remember the all-important sub-title. “It Doesn’t Have to be Perfect to be Beautiful. “
It’s another gorgeous day here at The Cape for my annual Ladies’ Week at the Beach”.

image

This time, this plot of earth & sea is a gift from God. Good for the soul.
I’ve enjoyed each & every one of your comments & shares, and seeing a slew of new email & Pinterest followers.
And NOW…I know you’ve been waiting to hear who the winner is.
I can’t wait to get this book into the hands of Monique Looney!  She just so happens to be a co-worker of mine in the Operating Room.
I would have made the big announcement last night, but there are so many distractions here.

image

Time to feel the sand between my toes.
TTYL my friends. Thanks for sharin’ the love.

One Year Anniversary on the Blog with a Give-Away!

One Year Anniversary on the Blog with a Give-Away!

I’m celebrating ONE YEAR here at

More Than Hungry!

  The year’s been packed tight like sardines.   Between learning How to Blog, I’ve worked full time and married off two {of 3} daughters.

Sharon & Gary

Britt and Zach

Learning the technical aspects has been laborious.  I just want to write for goodness sake.  Looking back to my first posts here, here & here I see progress.  But I want the space to look like what’s in my head.  NOW. 

I’d hire design out to a profession-ahhlll in a minute if I could.  

But I’m on a roll with no plans to stop.

In lieu of having you over to celebrate, I’ll settle for a little Give-Away.

I’m giving away a copy of a book that’s influenced me in a Big Way in the last year.

And I mean that downright for a fact.

The Nesting Place Book

The Nesting Place by Myquillyn Smith

The subtitle says it all.

“It Doesn’t Have to Be Perfect to Be Beautiful”

Yup – it’s become my so-called mantra for…the blog, my house, this skin I’m in.  The phrase has been stuck in my head and that’s a darn good thing.

If there’s just one thing to pass on I’ve learned this year, it’s that.

It doesn't have to be perfect

Beautiful Calligraphy by Lindsay Letters

 I’m so done with perfection.

In my last post about the summer fireplace {here} I mentioned the author when I used one of her ideas.  Both her blog & book encourage us to be more comfortable with – and even revel in – the imperfection all around us.

Donna and Eve

So Stick With Me. 

{And Mr. Hungry too.}

 We have so much to share…unfussy entertaining & hospitality, encouragement in the kitchen, around the table & home, with a splash of buffoonery for good measure.

And believe me - it ain’t gonna be perfect.

If you want in on the Give-Away,  you have up to 5 chances.

1) Become an email subscriber.  So many of you make your way here from Facebook.  Sign up to subscribe by email, so that each time I post something new you’ll find it in your in-box. You won’t miss a thing.  For doing this, I’ll put your name in the hat twice!!

2) Share this post on Facebook.  Spread the Love!  

3) Follow me on Pinterest ~ {Here}.   It’s one of my favorite ways to relax and be inspired.  You’ll find thousands of things I’m obsessed with.

4) Leave a comment for me here on the blogI LOVE to hear from you.

Believe me, you’re gonna wanna read this book.

The Nesting Place Book Cover

A winner will be randomly chosen Monday  – July 28th at 7pm (Eastern Time).

And DO come back.  You know I love company.

xo

The Summer Fireplace

The Summer Fireplace

I love my summer fireplace.  It wasn’t always so.

We may be a little crazy.  It’s only been 3 weeks since we had the last fire in it.  In June.  That’s New England for you.

It sits at the end of our looong Great Room. The raised hearth makes it visible everywhere.  If there’s no fire lit – I’m antsy, like there’s a black hole sucking out life.

It’s just not right.

So we keep a fire going practically every single night of the year, except for summer.

We’ve tried a variety of summer options in years gone by.  It’s always been a mix of pillar candles & holders in varying heights & types.  For years I only allowed white candles and then switched to a mish-mosh of whatever color I could get cheap.  I could be driving a Ferrari for all I’ve spent on candles in my lifetime.

Fireplace colored candles close martini glass

I knowww….there’s wayyy too much shtuff in and around the fireplace that year It’s one of those times you look back & ask yourself “Really?? – I did that?”.

I finally came upon a solution that makes me happy.  The inspiration came from one of my very favorite blogs.  This is what I saw:

nester fireplace upright branchesThe author of the fantabulous blog the Nesting Place is Myquillen Smith, a.k.a. The NesterI’m telling you, you MUST stop over & take a gander.  She’s a Blog World Rock Star.  She too wrote a post {here} about  fireplaces where you’ll find lots more inspiration.  I pretty much wanna be a big copycat and show you every one of her pictures.  Don’t miss it.

For me, I need a little candle action.  I don’t care if it’s 90 degrees out.  I came up with this.

Fireplace Summer Day Candles full color corrected

I took her idea of logs standing on end and added smooth beach stones & candles.  Three’s enough for summer.  And yes, I light them pretty much every night, except when we’re out around the firepit.  The “candleholders” are actually drinking glasses I found at Homegoods.  The glasses slip in & out of wicker sleeves.  I only use them for candles.  I like how they add to the organic look.

Fireplace one candle up close

Fireplace three candles lit

 Fireplace Summer Day Candles close color fixedSo how about you?  Do you have a fireplace you could spruce up for summer?  Or year-round if you don’t typically light it?

Here’s more inspiration.

fireplace ballard mirror{via Ballard Design}

If you have some sunshine, you can’t go wrong with the traditional look of plants or a potted flower.  I love this one.

summer-fireplace white flowers

Or this big Boston Fern.

fireplace with boston fern{via}

It’s not my  personality, but I think this one’s genius:

disco-ball-fireplace-10{via}

It’s the perfect little stage for an interesting vignette.

Here’s one with a couple of “random” décor pieces.  I doubt I’d have thought to put them together, but for some reason it just works.coral and bust in fireplace {via}

fireplace with moss balls{via}

fireplace with shells{via BH&G}

So if you’ve got a fireplace, stop looking at a black hole.  Get in there.  Play around with things you find in the yard, on the beach & around the house.  It could be a new happy place for you.

Mine is.

Fireplace one candle up close

I’d love to hear if you’ve been inspired to make a change.  And do share if you have another summery idea for the rest of us.  K?

love you all.  ~donna

Father’s Day Gift Ideas – Mr. Hungry Style

Father’s Day Gift Ideas – Mr. Hungry Style

Father’s Day is just around the corner friends! 

June 15th

Have you thought about how you’ll honor Dad this year?

I no longer have the privilege of having my father or grandfathers here ~ I’m sad to say.

I miss my Dad.

He had a big influence on Mr. Hungry.  That man lived by the premise “If Mamma ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy” – and well, that’s one fine influence from my perspective.

huffpost parents fathers quote{via}

He LOVED cooking, especially grilling over a wood fire. Those guys grilled together on many a Father’s Day through the years.  It’s what they wanted to do.   Their favorite fare was a marinated boneless leg of lamb.  Here are a couple of old pictures with lots of fine memories.

phil and dad at grill

I love this one.  They look like Gilligan and The Skipper.

Phil and Dad Gilligan and Skipper

So on this Father’s Day, I’m able to thank the Good Lord for the Dad he blessed me with and honor Mr. Hungry as father of our three daughters {a.k.a. my three birds}.

 But back to the main reason I’m here, which is to inspire you with Father’s Day gift ideas…

Mr. Hungry Style

It’s time to think outside the tie box.

 The price range runs the gamut from under $15. on up to a couple of pricey items to chip in on.  Undoubtedly, food & drink ideas show up It’s Mr. Hungry Style after all.  Hang in there if that’s not your Dad’s thing.  I’ve got plenty to share.

Here Goes!

Stemless Wine Glasses: Wine glasses see lots of use around here & are always getting knocked over. I feel bad when company breaks one – for their sake.  Don’t they realize this is a common occurrence?  I’m not sure why we don’t own any of these.  I love these bubble infused ones from Crate and Barrel. They’re super reasonable at $2.36 each.

flock-stemless-wine

 {Crate & Barrel}

(Can I just sit down to that little spread right now?  That cheese plate looks AH-mazing.)

A few stemless glasses, a bottle of wine and a hunk of stinky cheese would be a mighty fine gift in Mr. Hungry’s book.

Wooden Serving Board:  And that reminds me…how about a wooden serving board.  The one above is from Crate & Barrel too {here}.   But check out Etsy.com  for a huge array of others.  They’re handmade pieces of art in every price range, such as this beauty:

cutting board walnut{source}

Corkcicle: Have you seen these?  It seems like every respectable home should own one.  Keep it in the freezer & you can quick chill a bottle of vino to optimal temp when the need arises.  Even reds benefit from a slight chill when things are heating up outside.

corkcicle-069776633{via Amazon}

Chillsner:  For the beer drinkin’ Dads out there.  This (literally) cool gadget goes into your bottle frozen & keeps your brew frosty to the last sip.

Chillsner{via Amazon}

Give that to Dad with a mixed six-pack of micro-brews.

Mason Jar Martini Shaker - As with wine glasses, we’ve broken a few shakers in our day.  With this one, you can easily replace the glass with another 32 oz Mason Jar.  He has one, loves it and would highly recommend it.

mason shaker{via Amazon}

BBQ Roasting Pan: The versatility & nice BIG size make it the most used item on the grill the last couple of years.  If you know my Grill Master— that’s saying a LOT.  It comes with a removable can holder to cook up some beer can chicken.  He LOVES this.bbq pan pc{via The Pampered Chef}

The superior quality of all their grill pans & tools are a pleasure to use, with a big selection to choose from.

His favorite place for quality everyday basics in clothing is Duluth Trading.  If you’ve never gotten their catalog in the mail, you can {here}.  It’s unique, with hand-drawn illustrations & entertaining descriptions that are a hoot.  Of course you can shop on-line too.  Here are a few of his favorites.

The Long Tail Tee: He’s got a drawer full & has worn them for years.  Their heft & quality are the best.  There’s a slew of colors, with & without a pocket and with short or long sleeves.  A nice feature is the extra 3″ in length that keeps the backside under cover.

Ix-nay on the acks-cray.

long tail tee{via Duluth Trading}

They even offer it in a bucket dubbed “crack spackle”,  which would be a cute introduction – for the right guy – to this superior line of tees.

crack spackle {source}

Their jeans ~ Like no other.

Ballroom Jeans: Come on people.  I didn’t name them.  The description says “crouch without the ouch”.  Nice – right?

ballroom jeans{via Duluth Trading}

And their boxers?  I know a few men in the family who think they’re the best they’ve ever worn.

Bucknaked Underwear:  “Like Wearing Nothing At All” and super cool because they’re made from a nylon blend.  The customer rating is 5 Stars – with over 2600 reviews.  For goodness sake people we’re talking UNDERWEAR! They can’t be half bad.

duluth boxers{via Duluth Trading}

Okay – enough about that.  Seriously, their clothes are awesome and Mr. Hungry will rave about them if asked.  The site carries all sorts of other great gifts and gear too.

Cyclops Hat LED Clip Light:  Mr Hungry uses a headlight when he goes out to replenish wood at night for the fireplace, or when the poor guy’s rummaging around in the creepy crawl space under the house.  This would be handy for pretty much any Dad out there.  We have a couple of them.  It’s a bright 5 bulb LED light that clips on to the brim of a cap, allowing for hands-free lighting.  Imagine the possibilities – under a car hood, walking the family pet, during a power outage, etc.  And it’s under 15 bucks.

cylcops light{via Amazon}

A list of gifts Mr. Hungry Style wouldn’t be complete without books and music.

We’ve had this Bose Bluetooth Speaker for nearly a year.  It gets used every day.  It’s simple to link it to your smart phone or tablet and wirelessly stream your music.  It’s portable & easy to pick up and move from room to room or outside.  The sound is true Bose quality.  They’ve since come out with a mini version too.  Either of them would be one mighty fine gift.

bose-soundlink-550pxBose Soundlink {source}

Soundlink miniBose Soundlink Mini {source}

They’re worth every penny.

And speaking of worth every penny, I gave him this leather backpack – ohhh maybe 25 years ago.  If the house was burning this is what he’d run back in to get (after me of course).

This is what it looks like today:

Phil's Backpack

Obviously it gets a ton of use.  It’s the only bag he carried on a recent drive cross-country.  It goes with him to the beach and on every trip he takes.

You can find similar ones ~

Father's Day Gift Ideas

{here} & {here}.

Music plays a Big Part in daily life.  If we’re not listening to it on the speaker, likely we’re watching a Concert DVD.  We have quite the collection.  In this house, it’s a favorite late-night past time.  Here’s one we don’t have that I’m sure he’d like.

CrossRoads DVD{source}

Have you heard of the Italian Zucchero?

I’m letting you in on the music world’s best kept secret in the USA – but that’s starting to change with a big U.S. tour this year.

We’ve watched his 2004 concert DVD umpteen times over and if you’ve been to our house you’ve likely danced to it.  This guy is HUGE throughout the rest of the world.  His music spans multiple genres in the most unusual way.

Here’s the one we have:

Zu & Co  {source}

Take a look at who accompanies him on that one…BB King, Pavarotti (!), Eric Clapton, Brian May from Queen and many more!  But he’s got a newer one we don’t have yet:

zucchero{source}

It was just released this year.

hint hint hint hint hint

Here’s another concert we watch over & over.  We’ve yumped around quite a bit to this one too.  It’s feel-good music.

Jason Mraz DVD{source}

And last but not least, a list – Mr. Hungry Style –  wouldn’t be complete without BOOKS, books and more books.  He’s a voracious daily reader with a quirky need to only read hardcovers (well excuuuuuuse me).  No paperbacks allowed.  And certainly not a tablet – Horrors.  I’m pretty sure his number one favorite gift would be a gift card to Amazon, so he can indulge the passion without the guilt.  He almost always buys used books.  Here’s the stack he’s working on right now.

Phil's Summer Book Stack

His favorite novels include obscure Scandinavian mysteries and anything by John Grisham.  For non-fiction, he reads all the Malcom Gladwell books (like Blink and The Tipping Point) and scads of early presidential history.  And way more than that.

You can order an Amazon gift card in all different styles or print one out at the very last second.

Amazon-Books-Gift-Card

 Well I could go on a lot longer, but that’s my list for Fathers’ Day 2014 – Mr. Hungry Style.

I hope I have your wheels turning.

  How about you – do you have a great Father’s Day Gift idea to share with the rest of us? 

Hurry now.  It’ll be here before you know it.

love ~donna