Friday Randomness

First week back and what a whirlwind!  I love getting back into the swing of things and starting on some new projects.  Very fun and totally distracting from all the drab weather we're having.  I have lots of random things to share today.  

First, I got this for Christmas, and I love it!!  I've been making all kinds of healthy things in it, including this "raw"corn chowder.  

I have been so inspired by all the healthy things you can make with this gadget.  I decided to have some friends over for an impromptu "Spa Lunch" yesterday.   I kicked off our lunch with a detox lemon/ginger tea . . . 

And I used those fabulous disposable linen napkins I mentioned in my Christmas Gift Guide.  They are wonderful for parties since they make everything feel so special.  Notice the contrasting hemstitch on these.   If you would like a roll of your very own, click here.

Using the Vitamix, I also made a roasted garlic and Jalapeño hummus.  I served it with rice crackers and carrot sticks.  Total yum.

Then, for the main course I made a chicken/broccoli/asparagus pasta with a spicy cream tomato sauce (again with the Vitamix).  Here is a picture I took before adding the pasta and sauce to mine. 

Here's the table setting I did for the occasion . . .  I removed the leaves from my dining table to make a more intimate setting for our lunch.  

I did keep the cloches, but made one change.  I found these faux succulents locally at the Lamb's Ear when I was shopping for accessories with a very cool client on Monday.   We picked up several fresh new items for her space and I just had to have a few of my own.  The price point on these is crazy good.  I used them under the third cloche, along with the primrose from New Year's Day under the other two.   They look totally real.

In addition to our yummy lunch, I finally got my island lighting hung.  I'm so pleased with how it turned out!  I think they are a nice compliment to the drum shade in my breakfast room, and finally I have more light in my kitchen.  

Here's another view.  Also, I used the silicone dipped bulbs.  They soften the light in such a great way and add a level of sophistication you just can't get from a bare bulb.  Locally, you can pick these up at Little Hardware in Mountain Brook Village, or click here for some of your very own.

More random news, last weekend, my daughter and I were together for a girl's weekend (the guys took a father/son hunting trip).  So, like most girls after several rounds of movies, popcorn and ice cream, we decided to re-arrange our family room.  

We left the wing back chairs and skirted ottoman in place, but opened up the game table and placed it in the center of the room and reconfigured the seating area.  We tend to have movie nights during the cold weather months and enjoy playing games or even snacking at that table during the movie, so I thought it would be fun to center it in the room.

We also pulled in the "x" bottom stools from the living room for even more lounging.  This seems to be Lottie's new perch.  It had been so long since I had do a redesign in my own space that the changes feel really fresh. 

I also got my January issue of Birmingham Home and Garden, and it is a show stopper!  The entire issue is devoted to modern spaces, and every last one of them is stunning.  I have to stay I think it is my favorite issue to date!  They also included my predictions for 2013 design trends in their "Tastemaker's Predictions" section.  Totally made my day!   You'll have to pick up an issue to get the inside scoop.

This week, I read a fantastic post by the oh so talented Carla Aston, on How to Decorate the Top of a Cabinet (and how not to).  Love the images she included in this post. 

I also discovered a fabulous team of artisans who are making custom stamps, and just fell in love with this one.  It will be arriving in the next week! 

OK, so how's that for some randomness on a Friday!  Happy Weekend everybody. M.


  1. Love the new configuration of your family room, Mandi -- perfect example of making the room work for YOU, right where you are.
    Have a good weekend!
    xo Heidi

  2. Thanks so much Mandi for including my link in your post. You're going raw food now, huh? How do you like it? Your lunch looks divine!

  3. Oh my gosh what a lovely space! Love the stools..its almost the unexpected element! I love the unexpected.

  4. Your home looks beautiful....Carla always has wonderful tips on decorating...I have never had corn chowder...I will have to try it!

  5. There are so many good tidbits in this post I'm going to have to come back to read it again! The new lanterns in your kitchen look fantastic. I'm working on a project right now and their kitchen needs new lighting and you just sold me on 2 lanterns for over their island. Love what you did with your family room too - that game/snack table really anchors the space too. And if you don't have my dream home - it's gorgeous Mandi! I don't think I had seen your family room shots before.

  6. Thanks for the tip on Fawnsberg too - what great stuff!

  7. Love the picture frame lights over your bookshelves. Could you tell me where to find those? Are they oil rubbed bronze?


Thank you for thoughts on my post! M.