The Little Things

Flowers from Dandelion Ranch

Today, make a conscious effort to appreciate the little things.

Appreciation in the smallest amounts will lead to a large and open heart.

Take a second to discover what little things make you happy.

And you’ll soon see how quickly they add up.

Here are some of the simple things I appreciate in my life.

Pablo in Bed

The love of an animal.

If you have one of your own, sit down and hug your creature.

If you don’t then stop and give a pet to one.

They want nothing in return other than a little love and the act of giving you will get so much more back in return.

cheese

Cheese

Unless you are lactose intolerant.

Go buy some cheese today, splurge, get something good, sit down and relish it.

I dare you to indulge.

Sisters

Siblings

Call a sister or brother today.

They share your DNA, they know you like no one else and if your siblings are like mine they make me feel better even with a 5 minute phone call.  We usually end up talking about our parents and laughing about something only we get. It’s an intimacy that only siblings can share.

Cooking Club at Lulu's

Dining Alfresco

Turn off the damn TV.

Enjoy the last few days of summer.

The smell of the grill, being outdoors and breathing in the air.

Take some time to make your table special.

Putting a little effort into and changing up the routine is good for you, it’s good for the family.

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Fresh Flowers

I buy them every week and scatter arrangements around the house.

 To appreciate their beauty or the aroma is good for the senses and in turn good for the heart.

Even if you are picking up some from the grocery take the time and trim and arrange them in a vase.

You’ll actually find it therapeutic.

(Why don’t you put them on your outdoor dining table?)

Flat White

Coffee

The first sip of a perfect cup of coffee.

Never underestimate the joy in a good cup of coffee.

Enough said.

Los Angeles Sunset

Watch the Sunset.

Right now in LA I am loving the purple, lavender, magenta and pale pink skies at sunset.

To me those colors signal the end of summer.

And with that goes the sadness that summer is coming to an end.

Or for many, joy that the kids are headed back to school.

 Sit back and take in the beauty of it.

cocktails

The Evening Cocktail

My friend LuluPowers aka” Queen of the Sneaky” makes a ritual out of cocktail hour.

It’s so civilized.

 Sit down, relax and enjoy.

It’s a way to stop and slow down for a little reflection on your day.

Mom and Scrabble

Board Games

Remember when we all used to sit down and play games together?

 Today, with all the electronic games, you don’t need a partner to play, it’s isolating.

Get your old board games out.

They promote interaction with another person and besides it’s really fun.

Book Shot

Books

A real, actual book printed on paper.

Turn the pages and dive into another world.

 Morning

I enjoy the quiet of the morning before anyone in the house gets up.

I suggest going outside for a minute or two and listen to the sounds of the birds and neighborhood waking up.

Hand & Soil

Gardening

Dig, weed, trim, prune, water.

Get your hands dirty, it’s a good feeling to take care of living things.

IMG_1912

The love of your spouse.

I try to appreciate the small gestures my husband makes for me.

True signs of his love and once I string them all together I realize just how lucky I am.

To me love is not in the grand sweeping gestures, rather the often mundane  little ones that I sometimes take for granted.

For instance, each morning my  husband leaves me the newspaper on the front doorstep when he leaves for yoga class so I don’t have to run outside to the driveway to retrieve it.

Thoughtful, kind and considerate and it means a lot to me.

So today take a moment to notice a few little things that make you happy.

You’ll be glad you did.

xoxo Carrie

Photo Credits: Carrie Carr, and www.happynews.com

Gordon, Wisconsin Population 176

Forrest Road

 I announced to a group of ladies at a dinner party that I was beyond excited to go to Wisconsin for vacation.

 I would be unplugging, away from news, tv, phone calls, work.

The kids had to play outside and create their own fun.

Declan by window

Make forts, swim, take walks, play in the forest.

I was amazed when one of the women said, “why would you want to do that?”

The thought of being so remote and having an electronic free zone seemed horrific to her.

 I’ll tell you why I was so excited.

Doc Shot

I had no idea what was going on in the world other than my own world.

I enjoyed talking to my family face to face instead of texting.

sunset feet

Each night I got to watch the sun set.

I enjoyed daily four mile walks with my sisters and Mom.

Wild Roses

We discovered wildflowers, followed animal tracks, walked through the woods, heard a symphony of bird songs.

We waved to and were waved back by every person who passed us.

They slowed down to 20 mph to let us pass (try that one in Los Angeles).

We saw a bear.

We made wonderful nightly meals and all sat down as a family to eat.

We drank some awesome wine.

We drank even more awesome beer.

Beer Chair

We saw more eagles than crows.

We saw more deer than people.

My 6-year-old now knows how to kyack.

Caroline Kayak

My daughter learned to fish.

We played for  hours in water  so clear you can see your feet and all the fish swimming around.

Clear Water

We drank tap water from the faucet.

It’s ice-cold, delicious and clean!

I did some canoeing.

Canoe

I listened to big, loud Midwest thunderstorms at night.

Powerful and majestic and perfect for sleeping.

View of Lake

When we woke up we made huge pots of coffee and sat on the screened in porch, surrounded by old pine trees and an amazing view of the lake and slowly embraced the day.

We went to a Lumber Jack show.

 I learned a lot about logging  and I got to see some super cute Lumber Jack’s.

Lumberjack

We ate at a local joint for a Friday Night Fish Fry,we drank beer, ate cheese curds, played Pac-Man (yup, the original version was still in working order).

Long Branch

No flash or frills, no one was dressed up, it was real, delicious and down home fun.

cheese curds

I felt American.

I know it sounds corny, but there were American flags all over the place and it wasn’t because of the 4th Holiday it was because the people of the small town communities we visited love their country.

It’s nice to be around and especially after the controversial verdict that has our nation divided and up in arms.

   I almost cried when I ate an iced chocolate raised donut because it was that good.

We played family charades and ate popcorn.

The sound of the Loons on the lake, eerie and beautiful.

I love the fact each year I can count on nothing changing.

Cabin Wall

The creak when you hit the second stair on the way down, the sauce pan that was struck by lighting, the elephant foot stool, the pheasant taxidermy on the mantle, the fireplace made from stones from the near by St. Croix river, the old faded map of Wisconsin, the porch swing.

They will all still be there, unchanged when we return.

Lighting Sauce Pan

Wisconsin Map

The memories I had as a kid will be the same memories my daughter will have.

Carrie 1972

 Carrie 1972

Caroline On Dock

Caroline 2013

It’s so nice that there is a place that stands still in time.

Gordon Forest

Standing still is not a bad thing.

Darbie & Sunny

I came home with a clear mind and a full heart.

Gordon

I whole heartily recommend going away to a place Like Gordon, Wisconsin.

Population 176.

And now I hope you understand why.

xoxo Carrie

Packing for the North Woods

Wisconsin MapI am counting the days before we head out of town for our annual trip to Wisconsin.

It’s a slice of heaven and the biggest decision of the day is whether we should have white or rose wine.

Brule river

I am starting a packing list and here are some things I won’t leave home without!

This tote is the bomb, you can turn it into a cooler, you can cram all your carry on stuff inside it, sturdy, with a lifetime warranty.  It’s the best.  If there is a rainy day we will drive an hour into Duluth and hit the store.

Duluth Pack Tote

Buy it here: Duluth Pack

My favorite pant of late is Current Elliott’s, “The Buddy Trouser” in Army Camo. I love the tapered leg and the Chino style.  The cotton is so soft and light weight that they work in the heat and keep me covered at night when the mosquitos come out to feast on my ankles.

currentelliott-army-army-camouflage-cotton-pants-product-1-7397352-919681397_large_card

Buy them here: Bloomingdale’s

Ask anyone who knows me and they’ll tell you I am a sucker for some stripes.

My old and dearly loved St. James Sailor Shirt will be coming along again this year.

It’s old, a bit frayed, and gets better with each wash.

Perfect to throw on with shorts, jeans, skirts, sweats or over a swimming suit.

I’ve been known to wear it for days…..thank god we are amongst family.

st-james-shirt

Buy it here: St. James

Muriel Brandolini is a major style crush for me.

Her interiors and personal style are divine and I’ve been following her for years.

So a while back when I heard she was making hats, I had to run out and get one.  It shades the whole face which I love.  Personally I love a little tan, but I hate wrinkles more so it’s sun block city and the hat helps.

 I can’t find them in the stores anymore, but they pop up on Ebay every now and again.

Muriel Brandolini

 I bring a bunch of long Cover Up’s, my adult version of a onsie.   I sleep in them, canoe, cook and cocktail in my cover up’s. Here’s a super cute one I just got from J Crew.

Nili Lotan Beach Cover Up

Buy it here: J Crew

When I was last in Nantucket I bought a pair of these clogs from Brooke Boothe’s Nantucket Monogram.  My clogs are black with a hot pink monogram.  I can walk for miles in them they are so comfy, I throw them on like slippers. They are already in my suitcase.

Monogrammed Clogs

Buy them here: Nantucket Monogram

Make up usually does not come out of the case (unless we are doing a family Christmas Card) while I am in Wisconsin.  I do however, throw on some Rodin Lip Balm.  It provides a hint of tint and a great, long-lasting sheen.  It’s moisturizing too.

Rodin Lip Gloss

Buy it here: Barney’s

Gordon Porch Swing

A good read is a must, so I am taking my Book Group pick “The Interestings” on this trip.  I like to read printed hardcover books even though they take up packing space, it’s a must.  I like to read on the big porch swing, air breezing through the screened in porch.  It’s great, after a long day of swimming especially before dusk.

The Interestings

Buy it here: Amazon

Cousin forrest walk

We love to take long daily nature hikes through the forest and we’ll stop to eat wild blueberries, search for animal tracks (and occasionally run into some animals), look at all the beautiful wild flowers. It’s fun to do a little amateur birding on the walks and there happens to be an abundance of Bald Eagles.  Seeing one up close with binoculars is a sight to behold.  It’s also pretty cool to be lay down on the dock and watch them circle above.

LL Bean Field Binoculars

Buy them here: LL Bean

Birds of North America Book

Buy it here: Barnes and Noble

I also like to bring some of my favorite recipes.  One of the most fun things about the trip is cooking with my sisters. We sip (or chug if the kids are making us batty) wine, crank the music and grab some cooking utensils which we use as microphones while we prepare the evening meal.

I will be bringing recipes from my worn and torn Barefoot Contessa, Zuni Cafe, Mozza, and Sunday Suppers at Luques cookbooks.

Summer Salads

And board games!

Scrabble and a deck of cards are coming in my bag.  Jenny is bringing Mastermind and my Mom is bringing some oldies but goodies.  I also like a big, complicated jigsaw puzzle that we can work on all week long.

scrabble

I am so looking forward to unplugging in one of the country’s most beautiful places. Where nature thrives, firefly’s glow and my family reunites every year and creates memories for the next generation.

Northwoods Here we Come!

xoxo Carrie

Photos: www.123rf.com,  National Geographicwww.scrabble.com, all the others are from me.

Sandal Season

Girl in sandals

I love sandal season.

Because sandal season means summer is here.

And I love summer and all it entails.

I’ve recently done some sandal shopping and I am ready for:

Jazz Nights at LACMA, Wine Tastings at Barnsdall Park,  El Fresco restaurant dining, Summer BBQ’s, flea markets, beach parties, Malibu, summer vacations, and weekend getaways.

jcrew26

 Photo: www.promenadeonthepeninsula.com

I picked up the black and lilac sandals from J Crew.

A great gladiator style, with a smidge of a metallic heel.

I just couldn’t resist the lilac.

They’ve been fun so far and I am surprised at how many different colors they work with.

I thought I’d use the black more, but the lilac have proven to be more of a staple.

And with the $150 price tag (now on sale for $119), who could pass them up?

Liliac Gladiator

Buy them here:  J Crew

I also picked up two pairs at the Neiman Marcus Shoe Sale after lunch at Mariposa with friends.

If you meet 3 of your best girlfriends for lunch during a shoe sale, it is a guarantee that you are coming home with some new shoes and a pop over in your belly.

I love the color combo of the Lanvin Flats, a little white, brown, and black. They have a bit of a heel so they work with everything and the ankle strap gives the shoe some sex appeal without going over board.

Lanvin Sandals

Buy them Here: Neiman Marcus

I also couldn’t resist this pair of Marni sandals.

 The cherry color is gorgeous and they just so happen to match my favorite necklace from J Crew.

Red Marni Sandal

Marni

Here’s the necklace

Red Flower Necklace

 J Crew

And finally I needed a new pair of sandals with a heel that I could actually walk in.

I found these Elizabeth and James sandals and they fit the bill.

Elizabeth & James Sandals

Buy them here: www.shopbop.com

These Chanel Sandals are next on my list.

I love the chain embellishment.

They add a chic element, but the flat heel makes the ideal for running around.

Chanel Sandals

Buy them here: Chanel

 Go Summer!

xo Carrie

Hot, Hot, Hot

Hot Pink Ballgown

Hot Pink.

It’s the latest color I am obessessing over.

pink door2

I am super excited that one of my favorite clients ‘N” approved hot pink curtains with her Hague Blue Walls.

It is going to be divine.

My client “E” let me sneak some in her living room which made me super happy.

Hoping to do more.

In the meantime

Here are some of my favorite images featuring my color crush.

Hot Pink Sofas
JR0M5062

Photo: Emily Henderson

hart pink couch for CUE

Photos: Pinterest

Hot Pink Chairs

2_prettier-in-pink

Photo: House & Home

Chantal Thomass

Photo: janellemccullochlibraryofdesign.blogspot.com

You’ll always be in the “hot” seat in this chair.

Great price too!

Hot Pink Thornet Chair

Photo: Keep.Com

Pink dining Chair

Photo: House Beautiful

The pop of hot pink on the chair cushions make this room.

And no wonder the room is so chic, it belongs to one of my style crushes, Minnie Mortimer and her husband Stephen Gaghan.

Hot Pink Chairs, Blue Book Cases

Photo: Pinterest

Hot Pink Entry Way

Mary McDonald Pink Entry

Photo: Mary McDonald

Typically not a fan of the hot pink/black combo.

It tends to look at little  too “Gallery Z”  for me, but this entry works.

Jonathan Berger Entry

Photo: Jonathan Berger

Throw some hot pink into your tablescape for a chic summer look.

Hot Pink Table Scape

Photo: Pinterest

Throw some hot pink into some of your accessories.

The hot pink pillows on the blue gray sofa gives the room pizazz.

Kishani Perera Hot Pink Pillows

Photo: Kishani Perera

I love the navy and hot pink on this throw and the serape vibe makes this a winner.

serape-throw-hot-pink-one-size-331px-331px

Buy It Here: www.biscuit-home.com

The hot pink color jumps out in these wallpapers.

red_pink_bougainvillea_circles_orange_hot_happy-hd-wallpaper-368741

Photo: hdwallpapers4desktop.com

 I love this Elizabeth 2 Grey and Pink wallpaper  by  “Madison & Grow” .

timthumb.php

Photo: www.betterlivingthroughdesign.com

I love this shot and her outfit.

If only I could walk in heels.

I haven’t done that in 10 years.

Pink Wall

Photo: www.pinterest.com

xoxo Carrie

Top two photos: Pinterest

Falling in Love Again

xoxo

When you are with your mate for a long time, you get used to them. You love them without doubt, but life, kids, etc. takes a toll on a relationship.  You know what I’m talking about….It’s just not sexy time as much as it once was.

And then one ordinary day you take a second look and realize why you fell in love in the first place. And bam… all the fun, goodness and sexiness comes roaring back .

Just like when you  were falling in love.

Jonathan Adler

Well I have always loved Jonathan Adler. His quirky goodness. His campy style.

It was love at first site.

I have some his earliest pieces of pottery. They’re classics. But then, I took him for granted and started driving by his store.

 Occasionally, popping in for a gift,  a decorative pillow, some bookends.  But I wasn’t coveting any furniture.  I kind of just got used to his designs being around and started to ignore what was going on in his stores.

And then one ordinary day, I took a second look and realized why I fell for him and his work.

Now, I’m in love all over again.

Here are some of the things that are rocking my world and must have!

Rio Pendant

The Rio 

$394

This is a great pendant light. I think it could work in a multitude of rooms.

maxime_w

Maxime Chair

$2,250

Spring is certainly coming in more like a Lamb than a Lion.

I am mad for shearling and fluffy lamb decor.

It’s catching on!

Mongolian Lamb Stool

Mongolian Lamb Stool

$1,445

My friend Monica was just coveting some lucite and shearling stools on Ebay.

Wait till she sees this number.

Pagoda Umbrella

Pagoda Umbrella

$495

This outdoor umbrella has great big style!

It makes me want to re-think all my outdoor decor.

Junior Hand Sanitizer Cozy

The Junior Hand Sanitizer Cozy

$42

No germs around here with the adorable needle point hand sanitizer cozy.

Who really wants to look at that unpleasant plastic bottle on a counter?

Sun Jute Pouch

Sun Jute Pouch

$78

The perfect little pouch to throw in your beach bag!

Money, keys, lip balm, i-phone, ponytail holders, sun screen, done.

brass_peacock_table

Brass Peacock Table

$3,695.00

I sure would be proud to own this Peacock table!

I’m so glad I fell in love again.

I hope you can too.

It’s fun.

xoxo Carrie

The 2013 Modernism Show

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Calling all Angeleno’s!

It’s that time again….

The Modernism Show

It’s kicking off this week

 Thursday, April 25th

With a fancy pants and super fun opening night cocktail party.

My husband attends every year with me without any arm twisting!

It’s a great date night.

LA Modernism Show 2013 evite with lecture info and exhibitor list-1

And here’s the bonus and it’s a big one!

Proceeds from Opening Night Ticket purchases benefits  PS Arts.

PS Arts Artwork by Student

PS Arts is an organization near and dear to my heart.

They restore Arts Education in Public Schools.

Schools need it now more than ever.

Moderism Show Former Booth

I love the Modernism Show for one simple reason.

Reform Gallery

Reform Gallery

They have good stuff.

I can shop for my clients and for myself all in one space.

Atomic Bazar

Atomic Bazaar

They have some great vendors and I have my hit list ready with the booths I am going to shop in.

Prints and Pauper

The Prints and the Pauper

So why wouldn’t you want to go to an amazing party, where your attendance benefits a great cause, you can shop for amazing things and have fun?

That my friends is a

Win/Win

Go buy some  tickets!

xoxo Carrie

P.S. If you buy tickets to the opening night party, you can get in all weekend long!

Going Green

Lucky Charms

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

I don’t have a lick of the Irish in me.

The Irish Flag

I still think Jimmy Malay is still mad at me for asking why he had the Italian Flag in his basement.  A high school romantic interest, we were sneaking beer out of his basement fridge. I am sure I wouldn’t have been so confused  if I hadn’t had so many Mickey’s Big Mouth Beers.

The Chicago River

But after spending so many of my formative years in Chicago, a city that treated St. Patty’s day like a National Holiday I’ve come to embrace the day.

Green Clovers

Photo: www.99traveltips.com

Green also happens to be my favorite color!

Bring it On!

Fornasetti Wallpaper

Buy it here: Fornasetti Wallpaper

Peter Dunham Fig Leaf Chair

Photo: Peter Dunham/Hollywood at Home

Lily Lodge Bonsai Tree

 Buy It Here: www.lilylodge.com

Ditte Sofa Anthropologie

Buy it here: www.anthropologie.com

C Wonder Ikat Dinnerware

Buy it here: www.cwonder.com

kelly wearstler green bathroom

Photo: www.kellywearstler.com

YSL

Photo: Yves Saint Laurent

18K-Yellow-Gold-Green-Jade-Quartz-Diamond-Ring-by-Vancox1-300x300

Buy it here: www.jewelista.com

EmeraldGreen_Lonny

Photo: Miles Redd

dorothy___light_mediumBuy it here: Hillary Thomas Designs

Green and Navy Kid's Bedroom

Photo www.elledecor.com

Green Place setting

Photo: www.pinterest.com

louis_vuitton_handbag_ss13_1

Buy it here: www.louisvuitton.com

Hermes_Green_CarouselBuy it here: www.latestrevival.com

fortuny-pleats-candle-de-medici-gree-1

Buy it here: www.amara.co.uk

2012TableRayford2Lo-633x404

Buy it here: www.leontinelinens.com

Leanne Thornton Green Dining Room

Photo: Leanne Thornton Designs

89 Woman in Green Dress

No. 89 Women in Green Dress: Picasso

sprinkles-march-flavors

Photo: www.sandiegosugar.com

inistioge

Don’t Forget Your Green and Irish Spirit!

xoxo Carrie