Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Beauty & Bread

"Everyone needs beauty...

as well as bread...

places to play in...

and places to pray in...

where nature may heal...

and give strength to body and soul."

--John Muir--

Where's your favorite place to do what this wise quote says?

One of my fave places is this view from the beautiful ocean view terrace dining area at La Valencia Hotel in La Jolla, CA, where my hubby and I had appetizers and tea yesterday.  Here are their professional photos so you can enjoy it with me.

Celebrating the art of simple, charming, elegant living!


Monday, October 27, 2014

Teacup Stain Removal Tip

Here's an easy-peasy tip to remove tea and coffee stains from your ceramic mugs...

Fill your mug or cup with warm, (not hot, not cold), water and drop in two denture stain-removal tablets like Efferdent.  Let sit for 20-30 minutes, dump out water, wash mug with soapy water, and rinse well.  Or run mugs through dishwasher.

Just a little tip for the day to keep your cups looking shiny and new for tea time; I've been doing this for years, but I don't remember where or how I learned this little idea.

Celebrating the art of simple, charming, elegant living!


Saturday, October 25, 2014

Del Rayo Fall Fun

Fall in SoCal, where we live, can be summarized in one word:  


You won't find hardly any orange and crimson trees, or many leaves falling to the ground, since most of our trees are palm trees.  :)  But there is a slight touch of fall here and there if you really look, so my hubs and I conjured up our own beautiful autumn outing a couple of weekends ago with a little country-in-the-city drive.  

We drove the pretty winding drive to the Del Rayo Shopping Center area, home to the beautiful bistro, Dolce Pane & Vino, which is a mecca for interior design at every glance.

It also has an amazing outdoor eating area under this lovely pergola.

Fun indoor table, huh?

Their fresh organic salads were delish and our service was very good.

In the parking lot near Dolce Pane & Vino bistro is a sweet little farmer's market--here's their video.

In the same shopping center is an amazing 15,000 SF interior design store, Le Dimora, which means "The Home" in Italian.

Oh my, this place is incredibly beautiful!

15,000 square feet of exquisite, (and yes, very expensive), things for the home, all artfully arranged.

I loved this particular room, although it's nothing like my personal taste in our own little home.  I like the soothing color of the walls and the modern, yet elegant furniture.

Isn't this embroidered upholstery fabric absolutely gorgeous?!

Everywhere I looked, faux fur is in, folks!  As are upholstered "hotel" style headboards.

I took a quick rest in their charming little settee under their nifty faux tree.

Hope you enjoyed this simply beautiful fall outing with us.

Celebrating the art of simple, charming, elegant living!

Kathryn :) 

Friday, October 24, 2014

Mushroom Tomato Onion Black-Olive Wild-Rice Pasta

I had a hankering for a healthy pasta dish the other night, and when I couldn't find a recipe I liked online, I looked in my pantry and fridge and invented my own.  Here's what I came up with below.  (I use all organic ingredients in all my recipes.)

Mushroom Tomato Onion Black-Olive Wild Rice Pasta 

  • Then I added in a (drained) jar of sun-dried tomatoes, a  (drained) jar of black olives, and one fresh chopped onion, and I stir-fried all of it on low just until the veggies were hot. 
  • I made a pot of gluten-free wild rice penne pasta and tossed it with the cooked veggies.  You can add in a little more coconut oil or olive oil if you feel the noodles are bit dry; that helps to toss it without tearing the noodles.

Served on our nicely set table with a small green salad, sparkling water, and Food for Life gluten-free bread that I cut into heart and star shapes with a cookie cutter and toasted in the oven, I thought it made a yummy fall meal, and my hubs raved about the flavors cooked together.

Celebrating the art of simple, charming, elegant living!

Kathryn :) 

Thursday, October 23, 2014

In Memory of Joyce Bechen

In loving memory of Joyce Bechen, my hubby Steve's Mom, who passed away today at age 84.

Photos here are of Steve's parents visiting our home in San Diego County, CA in 2006, beginning top left to right:

  • Joyce with her son and my husband, Steve Bechen
  • My hubby Steve, his Dad Edward, Mom Joyce, and me
  • I took Joyce to lunch at the beach in Cardiff, CA and she loved that we ate lunch right on the sand in front of the Pacific Ocean

Rest in peace, Joyce/Mom, and may God bless you.

Love from the California kids,

Steve & Kathryn 

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