Deck-orating

I’m baaack! Sorry that I’ve been MIA lately: it’s been a crazy couple of weeks! But, now that my school concerts are over, I can get back to doing a bit more of my other passions… like DIYing! My husband is thrilled at the prospect of the to-do list.  :-)

I have been waiting and waiting to work on styling our deck for the summer, and I am so excited to show you how it turned out! I’m starting with the table, since it really is the heart of our summer entertaining.

Styling a summery table with Flourish & Knot

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Pretty Planters

I guess Mother Nature felt guilty about jerking us around this winter, because spring summer arrived in all its glory this month! Now that I’ve gone and written that, I’ve probably jinxed it and we’ll get a snowstorm tomorrow.

To celebrate the (much-needed) arrival of spring, I treated myself to a little spree at my local Rona (other women splurge on shoes), and put together my planters for this year. In case you missed last year’s planter makeover extravaganza, you can catch up here.

These purple-blue salvia caught my eye and the rest just came together in a whirlwind of glorious plant shopping!

Purple-blue salvia with coral petunias

They (whoever “they” are) are always talking about planters needing the “thriller” (the tall centre stuff), the “filler” (the frilly stuff), and the “spiller” (the stuff that spills over the sides). I made sure to cover each of those elements when choosing my plants. Here’s what I used in each planter:

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The Rake’s Progress

Music nerd jokes for the WIN!

Sorry that it’s been radio silence around here lately. I’ve been so, so busy with rehearsals and concerts (’tis the season) that I’ve barely had time to breathe, let alone post. Today my choir is performing at a big celtic event in Montreal, but I really wanted to get something up here, if only to prove that I haven’t fallen off the face of the earth.

I’ve been making a concerted effort to take photos of our garden each week. I’m hoping to create a sort of digital garden yearbook, to chronicle its seasonal changes. About a month ago, I posted our garden plans for 2015, so if you’d like to see where I’m hoping to go with it this year, you should check out that post.

This is where we started:

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There was a lot of raking of leaves happening around here lately. NINE bags of garden refuse later, things began to perk up.

Crocuses

The crocuses were the first flowers to bloom in the garden this year. They are so lovely and delicate – what a joy!

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Raspberry Swirl Meringues

Today I am feeling blessed to have attended the baby shower of a very dear friend. She has been mentor, colleague, and friend and I feel fortunate to have shared this special day with her.

I wanted to bring something yummy to the shower, so I brought out my favourite recipe découverte of last year: raspberry swirl meringues.

Scrumptious raspberry meringues

These are just the most scrumptious, melt-in-your-mouth treats. I made them last Christmas with a salted caramel sauce (you can get my recipe here) but they are every bit as delicious without the sauce.

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(Im)perfectly pretty posies

Sometimes things just don’t turn out the way you thought they would. Cakes fail to rise. Paint refuses to cure. Flowers… well, they can just be finicky at times.

Last Wednesday I went grocery shopping (which means I came home with $60 worth of groceries and $15 in flowers). I had had a rough day and really just needed spring. I set about preparing my haul.

Pretty DIY spring arrangement

Tulips, alstromeria, carnations, and mini mums. All was right with the world. 

And then I began arranging them.

Would I do a bouquet?

DIY spring arrangement

Hmm, not quite right. Ok, let’s try something else.

DIY spring arrangement

Okay…

DIY spring arrangement

Again, it was just not sitting right.

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Scones + Oatcakes =

Scoatcakes? Scoans?

Whatever you call them, they are delicious!

In celebration of Outlander‘s return to the airwaves, I thought I ought to do a post with a bit of a Scottish theme. Monday was also Tartan Day, so the whole thing is pretty timely! (I haven’t yet watched the first episode, because I’m one of those old new-school people who have to wait for it to come out on the ol’ internets, so no spoilers!)

As I was considering what to do in the way of DIY for this post, I got to thinking about my grandmother. She was a major fan of Diana Gabaldon’s books (in fact, I think she may have been the first in our family to read the series), and would have loved the TV show. So, off I went to my recipe box, to see if any of her recipes would suit the theme. Low and behold: the recipe for her maple oatcakes!

Oatcakes Recipe

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Springing up all over!

Spring is finally here! And by “finally here” I mean that we’re supposed to get 3-5 cm of snow this weekend! Happy Easter, Canada!

But I’m not griping any more about the weather. My whining and complaining days are over (at least for today) and instead, I have turned my living room into its most spring-worthy self!

How I decorated for Spring for less than $20 | Flourish & Knot

That’s right: I did it all for less than $20, too! Any day where you can liven things up for less than the cost of a decent bottle of wine, is a good day in my books. And if that day also includes a decent bottle of wine… Well, so much the better!

In case you missed this weekend’s post, I got back in touch with my childhood and dyed some eggs in various pretty shades of blue and green. They now stand front and centre on my Spring “mantel”. Sadly, our home has no mantel (someday, somehow…), so I always try to give our buffet the special holiday treatment. Most days, the buffet is strewn with my junk things of Great and Immediate Importance. But not today! I am trying to turn over a new leaf by prettifying it, thereby discouraging myself from using as the largest shelf in the house. Or is that floor? I can never remember! :-)

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