Saturday, May 21, 2011


While I so wish that I could have been back in good old Glen Ellyn with my mom a couple weeks ago to celebrate her 60th, we were fortunate enough to be able to celebrate early with her when my parents visited over Easter.

Thanks to Sommer, who made a book for my birthday last year using this concept, I copied her idea and, along with the help of my brother, we created the 'ABC's of my mom and put them on the clipboards as a fun greeting for her when she arrived.

Since Sean's birthday was in early May, our clipboards are now sporting his 'ABCs' :)

Thursday, May 19, 2011

A little landscaping

Our front yard has really needed some love.

Here is the bad before can see the one random rose that was growing...

Last fall...since we had Paddy's Baptism and family party afterwards only a few weeks after moving in, we needed some quick improvisation...enter a few Boston ferns and mums to line the flower bed.

But check out the awesome plastic brick-looking edgers...

Those needed to go.  Last fall, Hallie was a huge help in aiding the throwing out of the plastic brick-looking things.  Good thing we live next to a creek with lots of rocks...can I also mention how much I LOVE living by this creek?  I wish we could sleep with the windows open year round because the sound of the creek is so soothing.

While my mom was recently here, she helped transform the front.  I didn't want to spend much money on it, so thankfully, we have a huge hosta garden on the side of the house.  My mom was hard at work dividing hosta and moving them to the front.  She trimmed the dying evergreen, planted impatiens, mulched, etc.  It was looking so much better!

Since mom left, I added two fuschia plants in the Hungarian baby bath, a Boston fern on the porch, and a flag.  The flag has been my favorite addition, but it has also been a comedy of errors.  First the flag pole holder broke.  Then, we got a new metal one - thanks to Sean for installing that.  Then, the flag pole lost a piece so only the top of the flag was attached and was flapping in the wind.  Finally, the new spotlight and timer turned into this possessed strobe light (sorry, April and Brandon!).  So, I guess I need a new set up.

Glory impatiently waiting for me to finish taking pictures in the rain...

we finished off both the left and right flower beds...
gotta love flowering shade plants!

Thanks so much, Mom.  None of this work would have happened without you.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Spring never disappoints...

Neither do free blooms from outside....

The lily of the valley and lilacs are so fragrant, they stop me in my tracks.  Thank you, Mother Nature!
I am really digging hosta and fiddle leaf fig leaves as greenery these days...

Happy Spring!  Now...if we could just get some sunshine here this week :)

Destination: Glenmere Mansion

During my parents recent visit, we took my mom to the most fabulous place, Glenmere Mansion, to celebrate her 60th birthday. 

Sean had read about this place, I did some online research, and we had some friends that highly recommended it.  I knew it was an old historic mansion that has been revived and turned into a boutique hotel.  I thought it would be a place that my mom would enjoy.  Let me tell you, it is eye candy overload.  No pictures do this place justice (and I didn't have my own camera, so I had to borrow my mom's)

One of the owners, Alan, was nice enough to take some time to give us a tour, and it was fun to get some additional background information on some of the pieces, the history of the place, etc.  The designer is Scott Snyder.  I absolutely love his style.

Library...the designer found this chandelier at an estate sale.  He wanted it because it was all black, well, after cleaning it, there was all this crystal and came from a tobacco estate, so it was just covered in tobacco residue!  Isn't it a beauty?
Isn't this so quaint...what an inviting room that someone can just go in the corner and work on a puzzle!

The GORGEOUS living room.  
There was so much natural light and the mixture of old and new furnishings was perfection.

oh my, I'll take two...

the orchids, the doors, the windows, oh my.

The supper room - with custom painted silk screens with scenes from the Hudson Valley...

Outdoor Area - boxwood heaven.  Off to the left (not pictured), they have a 'reading area' - how wonderfully decadent.
the birthday girl!

Okay, and I think my favorite may have been the bathroom.  I couldn't resist snapping a bunch of pics with my iPhone. It looked like there were little diamonds covering the glam.  Love.

We ate in their Frog's End tavern - my veggie sandwich was excellent!

And check out the meringue on Sean's over the top...gorgeous!

They even have a China room, where you can host private parties, and they have over 35 sets of China that the owners have collected over the years, and you can pick and mix and match what China you would like the meal served on.  So fun!

We were there a little to early to get the full effect of all the amazing outdoor spaces that they have...check out this image of the courtyard during good weather...

I can't wait to go back....ahhhh.  I could share so much more...their attention to detail is superb.   Their spa is supposed to open later this year...hmmm...worth saving for?  Probably!  If you can spend $500 - $3500 per night for a room, you should go stay here! 

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Light Change

My dad helped hang a chandelier that I bought last summer in Highland Falls (of all places!) while he was here.  At first, when he got it connected, the new-to-me chandelier was not working.  He ended up taking it down, checking out all the wiring...which all looked great.  He then tried no avail.  But...low and behold!  Somehow we had blown a after flipping the circuit breaker a couple of times, we were in business.  The chandelier should be a little larger for the space...but I can't tell you how happy it makes me, regardless.

Next time, I hope to not have such a fear of this and tackle it myself!  Thanks, Dad :)


After - again, wish I was a good photographer...