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Countertop Review

This time last year I was packing up our house to prepare for our down-to-the-studs renovation in our kitchen, family room, and master bath as well as the addition of a screened porch. The family room wasn't originally part of the plan, but that's a post for another time. The kitchen was where I really had to plan and scheme, and, yes even fret, to stay in our footprint and budget and to get the function and look I wanted. I love a challenge like this, though, so despite some occasional frustration with my client (aka me! ), I enjoyed the process. A key "want" of mine was honed marble countertops. There are dozens--maybe hundreds--of blog posts, articles, and showroom sites that compare various types of countertop materials and their pros and cons. I read most of them and took notes from a lot of them in the months leading up to our start date. One of the most helpful things was visiting a sweet friend's kitchen, where I was able to ask questions about cleaning, a

Mental Health Day

The month of May seems to have overtaken December as the busiest month of the year!  School projects, recitals, awards ceremonies, field days, and more filled the calendar.  The Mister and I felt a bit like we were playing that old Whack-a-Mole game—we’d attend, say, a Boy Scout Court of Honor and by the time we were home and pulling off our shoes another event had popped up.  This T&C Mom needed some time to herself before school was out for the summer, so I took a day off to do a little exploring.

IMG_3923First stop was Roots, a garden store that opened just around the corner from us.

IMG_3924 I strolled through their new courtyard, sipping coffee and admiring their bedding plants.IMG_3925 I was really inspired by their welcoming container plantings for sun.IMG_3926And, I thought this was pretty for shade, although I wouldn’t do quite as many different kinds of plants.  Some friends and I are planning to attend one of Roots “Wine & Design” workshops.  If we can ever get together on a date, I will definitely post about it.

IMG_3928Next on my list of places to explore was an interesting-looking shop called Shinola.  IMG_3932If you are imaginative—as I am, then you are sure that there are great antiques hidden in this sprawling, dark, and chaotic storehouse. IMG_3934If you are optimistic—as I am, then you are sure that the Queen Anne armchair you saw precariously perched atop two desks and a folded Persian carpet is probably 19th century.


And, if you are practical—as I am, then you will return wearing closed-toed shoes and old jeans—not sandals and capris—because this place is really, seriously dirty, and you’ve got to be dressed for the hunt.

I can’t wait.

Do you like to “dig through,” or are you a showroom shopper?  Perhaps a little of both?


  1. I'd have to say I am a little bit of both depending on the mood!
    What a wonderful peek into your day, sometimes we need to just decompress. Taking a 'mental health day' was the topic of conversation with my husband tonight as well. I agree with you, this last little stretch of school seems to be jam-packed, I can barely keep up!
    Hope you have a wonderful (and activity-free) Friday!!

  2. Now that is my kind of mental health day, getting the soil under your nails with earths goodness and a little retail therapy in an antiques!! Looks like a lovely day and I can relate to the merry go round of non stop activities and commitments, same over here and this post reminded me that I too, am due for a mental health day!

  3. a little of both...I love to browse both types of places and always hope to find a bargain treasure. These kinds of personal days are a must!


  4. Love those container gardens! But how do you have the time??? Now that summer has officially begun today, maybe I can escape too!


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