Our House In Bloom

by HEAB on September 4, 2015

BloomNation, the online flower delivery company, contacted me about writing a post on decorative floral trends after perusing their home inspiration board on Pinterest.  Normally, I tell companies that I’m not blogging much these days and no thanks, but this email piqued my interest as I love flowers and arranging them around our house. However, I know very little about current floral trends (or flowers in general to tell the truth), but the company wrote back saying, just make the post your own with arrangements you enjoy.  So I thought, why not?  And by the way, there was no compensation or anything for this post.  I just used it as an excuse to get out my DSLR and take some photos of the flowers around our house one afternoon.

Basically, I like pretty things, but “my pretty” may not be your pretty, and that’s okay. Apparently, there are rules when it comes to decorating and design (I read one too many design blogs when we moved into our new house this past spring).  Some of them I found to be helpful and others simply stressed me out, making me think that I was doing it all wrong.  I finally said, to heck with it, and just went with what works for our family.  It took a while, but I think we’ve finally found our groove when it comes to making a house a home, and I say “we” because Chris and I had totally different ideas when it came to decorating during our first few years of marriage.  I liked stuff, and he liked a lot less of it.  So, I started simplifying, and the process continues today.  We enjoy our rooms pretty simple and clean – I cannot breathe with a lot of clutter around, and the whole family knows it.  The kids have a play room upstairs, and we try to keep most toys in there or in the garage and yard.  However,  you know what I will never consider to be clutter?  Flowers, and it literally fills me with joy to have them all over the house.  I used to think flowers were too expensive because any arrangements I saw in the store or at flower shops usually cost more than I wanted to spend.  However, I’ve discovered this simply is not the case.  Most grocery stores sell bunches of flowers for just a few dollars (Trader Joe’s!), and I usually just add greenery from our yard if I need a filler.  So, here we go, our favorite flowers, some traditional and others, not so much.

Fall is almost upon us, and this past week, I traded in our front porch fern for some mums.  However, the mums looked so dinky after removing the huge green plant that was in this same spot.  So, I grabbed a ladder I found at a yard sale and a bucket I use to store art supplies in, and voilà…



Some of my favorite flowers in the whole house are two prints by my friend, Emily.


Fog Tree & Eucalyptus in Green


Potted herbs are a wonderful way to add a little greenery. Below, my basil plants I’m trying to resuscitate after one too many batches of pesto this summer…


This spot needed some greenery, and Target came to the rescue with this little topiary.  The side table was a find on my neighborhood message board – I find the best furniture deals there.  I sanded it down with plans to stain or paint it, but I ended up liking it this way…


White candles – also not clutter in my book…


Sometimes, dried flowers are the way to go.  Lavender is one of my favorite smells…



Dried hydrangea on the kitchen windowsill…


Fairy Tears, our kids’ favorite “flowers” on Chris’s bedside table…


If you have kids, go to a craft store and buy a bag of these colorful glass beads.  Hide them around the house or in the yard and have fairy tear hunts.  They are quite popular around here, and I hear this bowl getting dumped on the hardwood floors at least twice daily…


Sunflowers in the afternoon…


Roses and random clippings from our front yard…


Some days, I throw my clippers in my bag, we pack a picnic, and go searching for wildflowers…



Light and hydrangeas.  Don’t you just want to curl up in that sunbeam?


Flowers make me happy.  The End.

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Vegan Creamy White Bean Chili

by HEAB on August 28, 2015

We’re gearing up for fall around here (my favorite!) and made our first chili of the season tonight.  There wasn’t time to cook my own beans or get the crock pot going this morning, and so I came up with the following recipe using canned beans and gluten free flour as a thickener.  After taste testing, I decided to snap a few pics before eating and blog the recipe so that I would remember how to make it.  It’s a keeper – warm and filling with a little kick and delicious served with tortilla chips.


White Bean Chili

(adapted from this recipe)


  • 2 cans Great Northern beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 TBSP olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 to 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cans (size 4 oz) mild green chilis
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 TBSP nutritional yeast
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 2 TBSP Pamela’s Gluten Free Baking Mix (can sub all purpose flour)
  • 2 handfuls of spinach
  • salt and pepper to taste (I didn’t add any)


  • In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium high heat, and then saute the onion until clear (six to seven minutes).
  • Add the garlic, chilis, cumin, oregano, and cayenne pepper and saute another two minutes.
  • Add the the vegetable broth, beans, and nutritional yeast and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer for thirty minutes.
  • Whisk together the baking mix/flour and almond milk.  Add to chili and stir over medium heat until thickened (about ten minutes, adding spinach during the final minutes of cooking).


 Enjoy and happy almost fall!


No More Stinky Breath Hummus

July 6, 2015

Our kids like hummus, and they also like to crawl in bed with us first thing in the morning.  I love the early cuddles, but I do not love smelling garlic breath at 5:30 AM.  No thank you.  So, we stopped buying hummus in bulk at Costco and started making our own garlic-free version.  That […]

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Pregnancy Changed Me For The Better

June 26, 2015

Pregnant with Summer in October 2010… Thank you Emily for the beautiful photo! And 34 weeks pregnant with Charlie and Katie in June 2012… And last but not least, awaiting Hannah’s arrival in October 2013… Another favorite from Emily Smallcomb Family Photography. I did something I haven’t done in a while.  I wrote a guest […]

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Let’s Get Messy

June 16, 2015

Food: Hummus with chips and carrots, my favorite guacamole, more chips (you can never have enough tortilla chips in my opinion), crackers with peanut butter and apple slices, cheese pizza and hot dogs from Costco (so cheap/so good), deviled eggs, chocolate chip and oatmeal cookies. Beep, beep, beep…big fans of Little Blue around here. as […]

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A Sleepy Project

June 7, 2015

Anthropologie catalogs sure at pretty, no?  Of course my eyes just about pop out of my head when I see the prices, but I love perusing the pages for inspiration and styling ideas.  One arrived in the mailbox this week, and while flipping through the pages, I decided I needed to do something with those […]

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Yoga and Chocolate

June 4, 2015

A few months ago, my best friend asked me which local yoga classes and studios I liked.  I mentioned one studio that I knew of close to her neighborhood and encouraged her to go, but I felt so disconnected from my yoga practice that I really didn’t have any advice beyond that.  It had been […]

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Simple Vegan Cake, Gluten and Nut Free

May 24, 2015

Edited to Add:  After speaking with Summer’s teacher, I added xanthan gum and flax seed meal to the recipe below as my cake kept turning out really crumbly.  I’d taken a photo of the handwritten recipe, and her teacher had forgotten that the xanthan gum and flax seed meal were omitted from the original.  She […]

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Pretty Flowers

May 21, 2015

I know next to nothing about flowers, much less how to arrange them.  However, I LOVE fresh flowers, and I’m always finding an excuse to put them around the house…my excuse usually just being the simple fact that I love them.  Anyway, after hosting a number of wedding and baby showers over the years, I’ve […]

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A Day In Our Life

May 7, 2015

Inspired by Katie’s beautiful photo an hour posts. 5:30 AM wake up call courtesy of Charlie 7:00 AM 8:30 AM pit stop to play in dirt after dropping Summer off at her classroom 9:12 AM play York song, play York song, repeat 10:00 AM time to restock the produce 10:30 AM 11:00 AM 12:00 PM […]

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