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Editor's Notes

Happy Holiday Memories


Happy Holiday Memories

Though some of my family’s traditions have remained the same, we are always creating (or trying to create) new ones. But one thing hasn’t changed—my memories of past holidays that always come to mind this time of year. Some of my favorites (in no particular order): 1. The year my grandmother caught my hair on fire at our Oxford, Miss., Christmas Eve candlelight service when I was a teenager. Oh I got so mad! Now, I’d cut all my hair off to have her back just one more time. 2. The goofy gifts my brother, sister, and I received from far-away relatives. My step-grandfather always sent ballpoint pens with HIS name on them. My great aunt favored the free gifts that came with her QVC orders. 3. Each Christmas Eve, my grandfather, Claude, read the...

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A Fool-Proof Thanksgiving Feast


A Fool-Proof Thanksgiving Feast

Next week, my family will attend two family Thanksgiving dinners. Celebrating Thanksgiving twice is a first for us, and I’m really looking forward to it. Over the years it’s gotten harder and harder for the group to come together, so spending some much-valued quality time with our extended family is one of many things I’m thankful for this year. For our first holiday meal, the menu leans toward a more traditional dinner. Oven-roasted turkey, sweet potato casserole, creamed spinach, dressing and pumpkin pie. My husband grew up in Mobile, so the dressing will be an incredibly delicious oyster dressing (recipe below). In case you haven’t finalized the menu for your own Thanksgiving feast, here are a few recipes courtesy of Bay Appetit, a compilation of...

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Rose-Hued View

Ahhh...October—time for football, cooler temperatures, trick-or-treating and plenty of pink everywhere you look as it’s national breast cancer awareness month. This week, in honor of families and friends affected by the disease, we’re highlighting some of our favorite pink rooms. Depending on how your eyes see the hue—blush and bashful, or just pink and pink—it’s a color you likely either love or could very well live without. Personally, I love certain shades of the color but am not a universal pink lover. Pops of coral, an unexpected pink furnishing or walls painted a sophisticated blush anchored by masculine décor are realistic uses for me. Head-to-toe hot pink? Not so much. Here are some rooms that get it just right in my opinion....

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Giveaway: 'The Southern Cook'

When sitting down to the familial table, chances are there’s a favorite home-cooked dish or two making up the menu. Comfort food such as grandmother’s macaroni and cheese or a celebratory dessert reserved for holidays always fits the bill. While the actual food may feed the body, reminiscing about pies dropped, batter burned and successful (or failed) epicurean challenges like Coq au Vin nourishes the soul. Cookbook author Margaret Agnew chronicles her own family’s history through food in her latest book, "The Southern Cook" (July 2013, Parragon Books). Recipes such as her mother’s Pineapple Upside Down Cake and Coastal Gumbo, below, are just a couple of samplings from the more than 150 classically Southern dishes worthy of tailgate parties and...

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Weekend at the Gardens: Welcome Home

In little more than a week, Birmingham Botanical Gardens kicks off Antiques at the Gardens (Oct. 3-6). Last week Cindy Allison won two tickets to the event plus a copy of Bobby McAlpine’s book, “The Home Within Us: Romantic Houses, Evocative Rooms.” This week, one lucky winner will take home “The Welcoming House: The Art of Living Graciously” by interior designers Jane Schwab and Cindy Smith in addition to two tickets to the event. Schwab and Smith, the owners of CIRCA Interiors & Antiques (located in Birmingham and Charlotte), paired for their first book together which hit bookshelves this past spring. Within the book the authors impart wisdom regarding room flow, utilizing exterior areas in addition to interior...

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Defining Design

A few months ago my family had some major life changes, among them a move. Closets were cleaned out, boxes packed haphazardly (Can’t wait to organize that on the other side. Yikes!), and items large and small were given away, sold or tossed depending on condition. Now everything is still in the same spot it’s been—storage. Three major moves in just six years have helped me learn what furnishings I love to live with and which ones I can do without. I have abandoned green walls, embraced my love of contrast (specifically black and white or white and dark wood) and I'm now welcoming a desire for bold punches of color and interesting patterns. To that end, here are a few images that are defining the direction of our next home’s design. I love the...

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AIA Design Awards: Residential Winners 2013

This year's American Institute of Architects (AIA) Birmingham Chapter Design Awards had 46 entries and 16 awards. Of all the fabulous winners and beautiful projects, we wanted to highlight the residential winners. Simply click on the link for more information about each project.  Be on the lookout for 2013 entries on exhibit at the Alabama Center for Architecture (ACFA) located at 109 Richard Arrington Blvd S. Congratulations to bDot Architecture, Inc., Williams Blackstock Architects, Appleseed Architecture, Appleseed Workshop and Adams Design Associates, Inc.! Residential   Winner: Merit Award bDot Architecture, Inc. Residence 4149...

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A Bit of Sass

Don't you love this cheeky and unexpected punch of orange tucked behind this greige patterned drape? I do! Picture via Pinterest. (are you following us yet?)   Source: sfgate.com via BhamHome&Garden on Pinterest    

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2013 Historic Hollywood Home Tour

The Holly Oak Garden Club’s 2013 Historic Hollywood Home Tour is quickly approaching! While I had the opportunity, I took the time to get a sneak peak of what is to come. The owners of this year's featured homes did a wonderful job revitalizing their homes, while still preserving as many historical features as possible. With so many charming characteristics, the houses are undeniably beautiful. Join the tour Sunday, April 28, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. and enjoy the spectacular architecture these homes have to display. Tickets are available at Sweet Peas Garden Shop, Harmony Landing, Hunter Cleaners, and Arceneaux Gallery. They are $15 in advance and $17 the day of the tour. If you'd like to purchase tickets Sunday, they will be available at any of the featured...

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Out & About: Oak Mountain Emporium

It is a rainy Wednesday, and what better way to spend it than shopping? This afternoon I took a trip to Oak Mountain Emporium, a venue for a diverse group of venders. What I found surprised me! Not only do they carry a large selection of antiques and collectibles, but also a wide variety of jewelry, art, and shabby chic decor. I am drawn to the combination of various furnishings and the unique pieces they have to offer. Whatever your taste may be, you can certainly count on stumbling upon a piece to cherish. Take some time, and enjoy the array of items they have to offer. I love the way they covered a classic chair with this modern fabric.   These masks would make great pieces of art to add to a narrow wall.   Spruce up a porch with these...

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