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Instagram Crush - Phillippa Stanton

Hello my lovely readers! I know it's been a little while since I've shared some yummy art or photography to enjoy but I'm here to make up for it with a delicious sampling of work from the incredibly talented Instagram icon and Synesthetic Artist - Phillippa Stanton.Wondering what a Synesthetic Artist is? Here's how it is described on her website:

"Being Synesthetic means that Philippa can see sound, taste and smell in shape, colour and texture, allowing her to create unique portraits of people’s voices, food and drink."

So cool right? I can see this gift reflected in her photography for sure.

Her photography and short videos make my heart pitter patter and I often let out an audible sigh. Her gorgeous shots embody stunning color, interiors of her fairytale cottage (in Brighton, England of course), delightful styling and her adorable siamese kitty. Her images make you want to step inside her world and stay...forever.

You must watch the precious videos she creates. They are magical moments of stillness and beauty.

Like this one... [vimeo 182917004 w=640 h=640]

Ok...I'll stop gushing. Just enjoy these and go visit her feed on Instagram.

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{All images via Phillipa Stanton}

Aren't they just beautiful? So poetic in the way she arranges each item, each petal and always a steaming cup of tea! She truly shows us how beauty exists all around us. In our belongings, our family table, out our window - we only need to take the time to see it.

Now, go take a minute for yourself. Breath in the beauty in your life. You deserve it.

I hope you enjoyed.

With love and gratitude,

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Eating Lean & Green Cookbook

Hi there lovely people, Okay, so I'm continuing my theme this week of celebrating the women around me and all the amazing things they are accomplishing!

Today, I wanted you to meet my dear friend, Katie Marreel! You know the friend that is just good at whatever she does...yeah that's Katie! Creative, brilliant, kind, caring - you know that good to the core kinda person - well, Katie pretty much rocks and I feel super lucky to have had her in my life as a close friend and one of my best brain storming buddies!! Nothing better than another entrepreneurial girl to keep you going! So check this out...

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She has just launched her first cookbook and I couldn't be more proud! Woo!!!

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I have witnessed her toil lovingly over this project for a looong time but the finished product is beyond gorgeous!! Go to her website to check out this beautifully written and photographed (by Katie herself) cookbook. Chock full of delicious, healthy recipes!

So you can get to know her a little better, I decided a little impromptu interview was in order! Just like her book, she's bursting with great information and healthy tips for busy families and health minded individuals alike!

Okay here goes....So Katie.....

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What is your personal relationship like with food and fitness? (hint hint…tell us about your story. ;)

My story begins nearly 60 lbs. and 15 years ago with a quest to transform my body into something healthier. The first several years brought many new diets and exercise programs, some of which failed, and others that made their own small contribution to weight loss. Nothing, however, came close to achieving the ultimate goal.  Then I discovered the Medifast 5 & 1 Meal Plan© through Take Shape for Life©. With guidance from my physician, I followed the program and experienced radical results. I lost weight beyond my expectations and built an entirely new relationship with food. Six years later, I’m still maintaining a goal weight. Eating Lean & Green has become a way of life.

My relationship with food and fitness is always changing and growing. There are so many ideas from experts in the field, I find that I am always studying and learning as much as I can. 

When it comes to food, I have learned to think about it as fuel to power my body, and I find deep satisfaction in eating things that are nutritious.  Old emotional eating habits, using food as a reward and a comfort, continue to fade away as new healthier habits take over.  There is no reward sweeter than the satisfaction of having made the right choices!

Fitness is something I have always been passionate about, and I am dedicated to keeping it a regular part of life. I like to change it up and try new things. From yoga and strength training to running and tennis, I’m always keeping my body moving.  Although it can be exhausting in the moment, I know that it does so many healing and restorative things for our bodies. It’s worth every drop of sweat.

What was your inspiration in creating this cookbook?

As a person who has struggled with weight for most of my life, my inspiration comes from a deeply-rooted desire to help others on the same journey.  I am passionate about sharing healthy and nutritious meals that are also incredibly satisfying and delicious.  Losing weight doesn’t have to taste bad!

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What are your top three tips for incorporating healthy eating into your everyday family life?

#1:  Plan, plan, plan. It may not be the most fun task, but getting familiar with the nutritional value of your food and making a daily plan is the best thing you can to reach your goals.  I write down all the foods I plan to eat each day before I go to bed. If I’m going out to a restaurant, I will check out the menu online ahead of time and know ahead of time what I am going to order.

#2:  Don’t force it. Learning to be selective with your own foods while offering a few options for others will go a long way to getting them excited about being healthful. Forcing food choices on others will only drive them away from healthy eating.  Not everyone in my house eats on such a restrictive plan as I do, especially the kids who need more carbohydrates. The core of every dinner I cook is a healthy lean and green meal, but I will often serve a starch like beans or grains on the side to make it more satisfying for them. 

#3:  Make a daily habit. Whether you choose to read a book or magazine, listen to a podcast , or go online, spending an hour of time each day thinking about health and nutrition will make a big difference in your ability to incorporate healthy eating into your everyday life.  It will keep you focused and give you a better knowledge base to make wise decisions.

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What changes have you seen within your life and your families by implementing these healthy practices?

One noteworthy change has been in my own sense of identity and being comfortable with my body. Losing weight and maintaining it has brought a great deal of self-confidence and has opened the door to trying lots of new and exciting things in life that I might have been intimidated by otherwise.

The most exciting thing to see is the effect on people around me.  By living out a healthy lifestyle, I get to be an example for others who have a similar goal, but may have lost hope or gotten frustrated in the process.  My conversation often falls into the topics of health and nutrition because it’s something I get really excited about. I love getting to share new ideas about food that show people being healthful can also taste incredibly delicious. It’s a win win!

She's inspiring right? Katie is so passionate about helping others live a healthier life!

Now don't be shy...you can visit her at her website or Facebook too! Go say hi! ;)

Thanks for chatting with us Katie! You go girl!

xo,

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Little Red

Hello lovely people and Happy Friday! How are you? Our house is filled with the smell of our Christmas tree - I just love that about this time of year! Every morning, I go around the house turning on all the twinkle lights and appreciating their beautiful glow. I do love Christmas!

Wanted to share some pictures of little Claire Bear, that I managed to capture the other day. I'm surprised she kept the hood up, since she tends to dislike anything on her head - stubborn little bear...but so stinkin' cute.

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Those eyes get me every time...and I think she's starting to figure that out. ;)

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Hope you are all enjoying this special time of year! What's your favorite thing about the season?

Have a beautiful weekend.

xo,

Ivy

Fall Magic

Hello. How are you? After a lovely breakfast with my dear friend, Amy...and nap-time happening as we speak...I find myself with some quiet time. So, I thought I better get around to sharing some of my Fall pictures with you before Winter is upon us! We are lucky enough to have a beautiful little forest at the back of our yard. On the edge of this peaceful wood is a gorgeous Japanese Maple tree. I love this tree and often find myself staring out the window at its elegant branches and delicate leaves. In the Fall it is truly magical; lit from within as the the autumn sunlight pierces the cold green shadows of the woods. Its leaves like tiny flames perfectly formed and glowing...

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Don't you love Fall?

Hope your week is treating you well.

xo,

Ivy

Vintage Treasures

Hi everyone! Hope you have all had a lovely weekend. Last weekend, I spent the days treasure hunting! A dear friend and I hit the Portland Antique Fair plus some vintage shops and flea markets. Hard work but so much fun! Here are a few of the pretty items we discovered. I will be listing them in the shop this week.

Love this sweet, Farmhouse style kitchen scale! It's rare to find this color so I was thrilled when I came upon this one!

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There is something so homey about these lovely soup bowls. You can imagine filling them to the brim with a delicious soup while the rain comes down outside. I paired them with these stately antique soup spoons too!

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Mail isn't as pretty as it used to be but we should still have a beautiful place to hold it right? Love this silver tone, vintage letter holder. Very Art Nouveau.

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I'm so drawn to lavender glass. It's romantic, nostalgic and looks so gorgeous when the light passes through it. This antique wasp catcher is missing its cork but still remains a lovely, rustic piece.

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Okay well, these are just a few of the pretties we found. Hope you enjoyed them.

Have a wonderful week!

xo,

Ivy

Birthday Girl

Hello there. Hope your weekend has been lovely so far. I was going to wait till Monday to share these but I found myself with some quiet time and thought I better take advantage of it!

Claire's b'day was such a wonderful day. We had family in from out of town and many friends and neighbors came to celebrate our little girl. We couldn't have asked for a better day. The sun was shining after days of rain, not a cloud in the sky and everyone was more than willing to sit outside and enjoy some food, drinks and of course, sweet Claire. Grace was incredibly excited for her sister and was helpful and supportive. She even made a "sign in" poster that she made all the guests sign as they came in. So cute!

My mother-in-law made some beautiful decorations for the house and I borrowed these great cupcake stands from a neighbor (thanks Christine!) to complete the butterfly and rose dessert table.

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I got these precious paper butterflies from this Etsy shop. You can eat them too!

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It took Claire a minute to figure out what to do with her cupcake...but it wasn't long before she was stuffing her face.

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She was beaming from ear to ear with all the love and cuddles she got.

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So grateful for the special time I got with my family and friends...especially my Aunt Iris and Grandmother who traveled all the way from the east coast to meet Claire.

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Much love to you all.

xo,

Ivy

Face painting...

Okay, I had to share all these beautiful painted faces from Grace's b'day party...they are too cute! Such lovely princesses were in attendance! Of course, the birthday princess decided she didn't want her face painted! Perhaps, she felt it would have detracted from her tiara...who knows? I thought it best not to argue with her. She seemed to just love watching her friends have fun.

Her pre-school set up the most gorgeous tea room for her. Unfortunately, I forgot my bounce flash so the photos turned out terrible. So sad. Instead of looking at my blurry photos (I have SO much to learn!) let's take a peek at this gorgeous princess tea party...wow...

Do you have some birthday parties to throw this Spring and Summer? If so, head over to Kara's Party Idea blog for more of these stunning images!

xo,

Party idea images via here.

Tea for Two

Last week, I picked Grace up from school at noon so we could go have lunch together. She begged me to take her back to the "magical tea house"...also known as the Lady Di's Tea Room. How could I say no to that? Of course, my camera joined us...

Oh so serious...not for long...

the most lovely sweet potato soup and cheddar and tomato sandwiches...yum! Cheese on toast for Grace...

Sweet primroses blooming outside the window next to our table...

for dessert a plate of the most delicious English shortbread! It went fast...I almost missed a photo op!

Sitting there with her, watching the rain outside and nibbling our sandwiches, I couldn't help but wonder if we were making a memory that would stay with her. I hoped so. My mom used to take me out for lunches like this, just the two of us and I always felt so special. I had her undivided attention and she smiled and listened to all my stories patiently. If I can make Grace feel that same love, that same importance...then perhaps, one day, she will do the same for her child. When I so often feel that I'm not doing enough for her...it felt good to see the happiness in her eyes and hear the excitement in her voice.

A good Mom day.

xo,

Tea obsession & Tabitha Emma

Today I felt so restless. Do you ever get that? Where you just can't sit down and focus...so annoying! Finally, I decided that a trip to the book store and a cup of tea might soothe my nerves. So off I went, grabbed a stack of inspiring mags and headed home for a cuppa. While sifting through the gorgeous pages of Somerset Studio and sipping some steaming Chamomile tea, I figured I had better find the perfect tea pot to go with my lovely new tea cup. I headed to Etsy to begin the search...

I have yet to find the "one", but I did stumbled upon a fabulous Aussie artist, Tabitha Emma, who seems to love tea as much as me. Aren't these sweet? I just ordered the print below. Couldn't resist.

And of course, any good tea party has lovely treats to go with it...

Once I find my teapot...I think I will have to get this cozy for it. Tabitha makes adorable fabric creations too!

And Grace...well, she desperately wants this cake purse! Every girl needs a cake purse right? She cracks me up.

Check out Tabitha's gorgeous Etsy store and blog for more of her beautiful work! Aussie's rock, don't they? Speaking of Aussie's, tomorrow we are headed to my home town - Sydney for our Friday Escape! woo!

xo,

p.s. If anyone knows where I can hunt for vintage tea pots online let me know!

Teacup & Tulips

Last week, I had the pleasure of having tea with a lovely mom from Grace's school. This was no ordinary experience. She took Grace and I to a real (as real as it gets in my town) British tea house. We sat in a sweet little tea room. The walls were lined with a tea-cup collection (of course) and pictures of Princess Diana held center court over the tiny fireplace mantel. We were served by a darling older woman, who looked right at home and we ate fresh scones with jam and butter. The main course was cucumber finger sandwiches and cream of asparagus soup. Desert was an array of tiny tarts, slivers of cake and other delicacies. It was perfectly delightful!

Grace sat next to her little friend and they happily munched on cheese toast and sipped orange soda from their dainty tea cups. It was too cute.

If you are wondering where my photos are....well they didn't turn out. I was so excited, I couldn't focus on picture-taking and my little camera couldn't handle the low light. I promise I will go back and take some soon with my big camera!

Since then I've been completely obsessed with finding the perfect tea-cup. I went on the hunt with my friend, Amy and finally I found one. I love her...here she is...

Isn't she pretty? Paired with gorgeous, blush colored tulips she is looking fit for a princess...or just me.

xo,

Spring Decorating via Skona hem

Last Monday, I featured a Scandinavian designer and it looks like, quite by accident (well almost), I am back in the land of Swedish goodness. I'm sure many of you love the Swedish magazine, Skona hem...what's not to love? If you haven't checked it out...you should. Can't understand a word but the images are breathtaking!

I was drawn to this article about re-decorating for Spring, using what you have. I love the creative ideas and the colors are so fresh!

How gorgeous is this floral head board? It's made from MDF board and covered with fabric! Instant garden in your bedroom!

Simple Ikea lights and glass shelves make the blooming background functional.

This whimsical arrangement was made using wire and colored paper. So pretty and that cobalt blue paint is rather stunning!

Little vintage doorknobs make for an instant jewelry display...

and this re-finished vintage chair couldn't have more personality!

Remember to use Google Translate if you actually want to understand this fabulous magazine. I'm seriously considering learning Swedish.

Hope your Monday is going smoothly!

xo,

 

All images via Skona hem

Happy Thanksgiving

Hello friends, Tonight my brother came over to make pumpkin pie with Grace.

It was so sweet. He patiently measured out each ingredient and then allowed her to add it to the bowl. With her tiny hands, she carefully emptied each cup or spoonful, making sure she didn't spill a drop. I stood back to observe the magic and take pictures...

Grace didn't like the sound of the mixer but managed a smile for me.

The pumpkin pies won't win any prizes for beauty but they tasted delicious and my brother and Grace got to bond.  I'm so thankful to have him living here in Portland! It means so much to me that Grace will grow up knowing her Aunt and Uncle.

I hope tomorrow, your family and friends will experience the delight of preparing delicious food together! Being surrounded by those we love is something I will always be thankful for.

Happy Thanksgiving!

xo,

Texas Garden Delights

Just got back from The Little Winter sale! It was such a beautiful show. I even got to meet Abby from Abby Try Again! It was so nice to meet her after following her blog this past year. She was super sweet and I purchased a print that I fell in love with ages ago. Looking through her gorgeous photos inspired me to post some pics from our recent trip to Texas.  Although the trip was for very sad reasons, I am happy to share these shots from my mother-in-law's lovely garden. After all the tears it was wonderful to play in her whimsical yard. Grace especially had a blast... She has these huge old oak trees that seem to watch over the garden like gentle giants...

This little stage is actually a vintage day bed that my mother-in-law found on her many antique shopping adventures. Like the old red doors above, she collects precious treasures and finds the perfect spots for them. Grace adored dancing around on "her stage" all afternoon and into the night.

Hope you are having a lovely weekend.

xo,

p.s. If you live in Portland, do not, I repeat do NOT miss the opportunity to check out the incredibly talented women at the Little Winter Market. Tomorrow is the last day!

Pumpkin Patch Delights

Hi there. We are back from Texas and I'm happy to be home.

Before our trip, we went out to a pumpkin patch and had a perfect Fall day.

Thought I would share these pics with you before Halloween is over! Time is seriously going too fast...

I have to admit this was my first visit to a pumpkin patch and well, I was kind of enchanted. Highly recommend it.

Have a beautiful Thursday.

xo,