Photowall Art For Your Home

Nothing makes you look at your home in a whole new light than being “stuck” inside.

During these few months of shelter-in-place and minimal going out I’ve had plenty of time to take a close look and analyze my decorating style. I realized that after raising four kids and keeping an open door policy I really don’t have a style, except teenage friendly!

Outside a few mirrors, a monogram and one canvas print, my walls are covered in nothing but family pictures! Upstairs and down you’ll find vacation, kindergarten, senior, military, and lots of wedding pictures. A collection of Christmas pictures, and pictures of my nieces and nephews.

So many pictures.

Homey and Cozy?

Yes, absolutely!

What fits mine and Audley’s taste as we enter the empty nest years?

I’m not so sure!

I love having my kids and their accomplishments plastered on the wall, but at the same time as we enter this new phase of life it would be nice to not feel so confined by my wall decor. For the first time in 25 years we are kid-free and I would like to create more of a grownup ambiance throughout the house.

This is actually easier said than done.

When Photowall reached out and asked me to check out their collections, I was quite excited to add something different to our walls.

Photowall is a Swedish wall-art company passionate about creating inspiring living spaces with personality. Photowall has a carefully selected and diverse range of products. This includes posters, canvas prints, framed prints, wall murals and wallpaper.

Digitally printed and framed, all Photowall products are made in Sweden and shipped worldwide; very quickly I might add. Even with COVID-19 affecting shipping I had my order in 3 weeks.

Art is a great way to really dress up a space. Digital art makes it more affordable for all of us. While I don’t want to “erase my kids”, I do want to transform our space so there is more of a balance between their growing up years and an empty nest. I had fun looking at all the different options Photowall showcases on their site.

While checking out all the options available from Photowall I decided the place to start updating our decor was the dining room.

A 55 year old dining room suite is lovely in itself, as is a full china cabinet, but an accent piece on the bare walls really began to add a touch of cozy.

I’m not a huge fan of abstracts, but I love true to life prints and botanicals, so I chose a simple and lovely one that fit my favorite color scheme; blue and white!

Playing with a few accessories which included a huge banana leaf plant, and few ginger jars began changing the whole look of our small dining room in a matter of minutes!

This is not the only sprucing up of the dining room that I plan to do, but it was a great place to start. As you can tell from the pictures We still have a pretty empty space needing attention. I will definitely continue to browse the Photowall catalog to find a coordinating piece for the blue and white botanicals.

Photowall has a massive catalogue to browse for photos and artwork. Once you select the piece you would like to use, you will choose a frame and they do all the work, quickly shipping it out to you!

You can order a framed print, canvas, mural or even design you own at https://www.photowall.com/ .

Use my code ohfiddledeedee25 at checkout for 25% off! This is good through the end of the month!

A Girl’s Day & Honey Lavender Chicken

After months of being cooped up and feeling disconnected from friends and family, it’s wonderful to be somewhat social again! Earlier this week my sweet friend Tammie came over for some much needed girls time and chit chat. Keeping in touch by phone and text is one thing, but actual person to person conversations …. they can’t be beat!

Tammie and I both love to cook, so when we get together for lunch, we always try to come up with something delicious and different. We both have May birthdays, so we always try to get together, even though it’s a little later this year! Yesterday wasn’t any different. I set the table, planned out a yummy and seasonal menu that left us stuffed as we sat on the porch talking.

And we had so much to talk about.

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I wanted a menu that was local and seasonal as well as delicious. Hopefully that was accomplished! Lavender Honey Chicken sounds fancy, but honestly it was so easy!

For the dish you need a whole chicken (local and fresh is best), butter, dried lavender flowers (in season right now, so try out drying your own), fresh thyme, fresh rosemary, local honey, and balsamic vinegar.

You will prepare your chicken using butter, salt and pepper, then begin roasting in the oven at 375°. You’ll mix your lavender honey glaze using the remaining ingredients on the stove top and about 20 minutes into roasting you’ll baste the bird every 5 minutes or so until it’s cooked through. A thermometer should be at 165° when inserted by the bone.

I’ll have a link to the full, printable recipe below.

Serve with seasonal veggies for a lovely meal.

I roasted red potatoes with the chicken. I also added green beans, a salad made with fresh picked strawberries and Georgia pecans and rolls.

Here’s the full recipe for Lavender Honey Chicken

Tammie gifted me with a set of beautiful honey bee glasses from Williams Sonoma. They were a perfect finishing touch to our simply set table.

Tammie and I really enjoyed a beautiful afternoon. We had so much to catch up on, and yes, we talked about current events. You don’t see the world through one set of eyes, you have to open your heart and mind to see the world as others see it as well. You need to have empathy and understanding, not assumptions and judgement. Life is not the same for everyone. Our sons are the same age, but even with Bradley in the military I do not have the worry she does over her own son every single day.

Life should not be that way.

Politically I am more conservative than Tammie, but we don’t let that divide us either. It’s never affected our friendship and we talk about it, respecting each other’s opinions. We’ve known each other for so many years and I’m very thankful to have this beautiful, big-hearted soul as a dear friend!

I pray daily that compassion and understanding will replace anger and assumptions creating a more united humankind.

“My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.”

John 15:12

Have a good weekend my friends.

Bring the Coast Home with a Low Country Boil

So you want to go to the coast , but it’s not really doable right now?

How about bringing the coast home to you by throwing a southern low country boil?!

This is exactly what Audley & I did last weekend with Jonathan & Madeline. We set the mood, incorporated just a little themed decor & enjoyed a lovely night in.

I just love seafood, so a low country boil is one of my favorite ways to serve it up. Plus it’s so easy to pull together as you can make it as fancy or simple as you like! While dining outside is preferable, you can always bring this taste of the southern coast indoors. The best part of preparing a low country boil is it’s a one pot deal!

Yep, you read that correctly; one pot!

So how did we set up for our low country boil?

First, we hit up the market for fresh, coastal Georgia seafood. I love being able to support our fisherman, and nothing beats the taste of fresh seafood. If you don’t have access to locally sourced seafood you can use frozen, but try to find things that are wild caught; not farmed.

For our seafood pot we used shrimp, crab legs and littleneck clams. Sticking to tradition we also added andouille sausage, small, red potatoes and corn-on-the-cob.

The beauty of a low country boil is there is no set recipe or required ingredients! We’ve enjoyed occasions where crawfish was the main ingredient and I’ve known folks who added scallops or lobster! It’s all so delicious.

After shopping for all the ingredients, we set up a cozy little spot in the backyard. Our yard is a huge hill, so it’s not the most conducive for entertaining, but we still enjoy our time out back.

We lit up the fire pit, set up the Adirondack chairs, laid out a few blankets, decorated the table with what I call coastal Americana vibes, and hit play on our favorite playlist.

Of course a playlist is completely optional, but if you choose to have one, make it something you enjoy. For me it’s the smooth sounds of 70’s and early 80’s soft rock. About 90% of the music came out before I was old enough to establish my musical tastes, but classic Chicago’s 25 or 6 to 4, Steely Dan’s Deacon Blues, Atlanta Rhythm Section’s So Into You, or Christopher Cross’s Sailing is hard to beat in 2020!

Once you have the mood set through you decor and music it’s time to boil up your seafood feast! You can do this indoors or out, over a fire or on the stovetop. The key to this dish is the seasonings & properly cooking everything. I’m all about Old Bay Seasoning or even some Zaterains seafood boil. By far, those two brands are my favorite.

There really isn’t a recipe to follow here: heat up a huge pot of water to boiling. Add several lemons you have sliced as well as the seafood boil of your choice. Add your potatoes, cooking until nearly done, then toss in the corn and sliced andouille sausage. Once those two items are cooked to your liking, add your seafood to the mix (check cooking times so you’re not overcooking your shrimp). It doesn’t take long to cook seafood at all! The entire dish should be ready to eat in under 30 minutes!

There are so many ways to serve up a Low Country boil; the most common one just dumping the cooked pot of food on newspaper. Since I was using a wooden table (not really made for outdoor use), we opted for another method of serving.

A great big serving board!

We added cocktail sauce and melted butter for dipping and our one pot dinner was a one platter delight!

Pile your plate up or eat off the tray; it doesn’t matter! Just dig in and enjoy!

A Luxurious Spa Day at Home

Who doesn’t love a trip to the spa or a long, luxurious soak in the tub? Whether you’re living the Mom-life, Wife-life, the Work-life or all of the above, one thing is for sure: we all need some time for ourselves for self-care in order to detox, rest and rejuvenate. Imagine if you could do that without ever leaving the house, feeling guilty or spending a fortune?!

Luxury at home / ohfiddledeedee.com

By far one of my favorite ways to detox is to prepare a hot bath and let my cares wash away. This has become a once-a-week thing for me over the last couple of years and honestly it’s one of the best things I’ve done! You can create a spa-like environment in your own bathroom to escape in the evening after the kids are in bed or while hubby is watching reruns of M*A*S*H or sleeping through that Hallmark channel you were watching together. Leave him snoring on the couch and grab a few things from the kitchen to elevate your bath game and soak away!

Spa Day at Home / ohfiddledeedee.com

The beauty of a bath is you can make it as simple or as fancy as you like. Sometimes just the fragrance of bubbles and music will soothe the soul, but sometime I love the visual as well as sensual appeal of a bath. Fresh fruits, bath salts and even milk can change your bath game.

Create your own Spa Day / ohfiddledeedee.com

Ingredients for my latest soothing bath were oh so simple: almond milk, citrus slices, Dr Teals salts, fresh flowers, candles, and music. Oh! I forgot the tea! That’s it. Things I seem to always have on hand and things that appeal to my senses.

Spa Day Ingredients / ohfiddledeedee.com

To prepare this sweet bath I put on a playlist consisting of the contemporary jazz sounds of Diana Krall and Harry Connick, Jr, filled the tub with water as hot as I could stand, swirled the milk, bath salts together in the water, then floated the citrus slices and roses on top. Go on and squeeze a little of the citrus juices into the water as well. I use Dr. Teals Himalayan salts for this because they have a citrus undertone that really pairs well with the citrus slices! Finally, I lit candles that complimented the fragrance of the salts and citrus before sliding in to relax with on oversized cup of Celestial Sleepytime tea.

Spa Day at Home / ohfiddledeedee.com

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The beauty of this bath is you can change up the “ingredients “ to suit your own senses! If you like lavender, pair it with roses. Try peppermint and eucalyptus. There are many options, and you can even find a tea to compliment all of these combinations.

Tea and a soak / ohfiddledeee.com

 

Bathtime / ohfiddledeedee.com

That’s all it takes for a little slice of relaxation in this crazy time. Treat yourself and remember self care is important. You can’t take care of your family if you’re running on empty. Thirty minutes to detox isn’t selfish; it’s necessary. Savor the moment and you’ll be amazed how much this time will do you good.

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