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an alligator encounter

March 17, 2017

alligator jaws pleasure in simple things blog

A recent work trip to Florida gave me the opportunity to see an alligator close up! I have been to Florida before, but never really got the chance to check one out.

The first one I saw in the wild looked like this:

alligator in the wild pleasure in simple things blog

Creepy looking, isn’t it?  Then, I got the chance to hear a little about alligators and their habits at a sanctuary from someone that actually handles the alligators…and, this was one of the monsters he handles!

a huge alligator pleasure in simple things blog

I found this guy really fascinating!  He looked so prehistoric!  Look at the surface of his body up close!

reptile skin pleasure in simple things blog

Now, look how ‘up close’ the handler got!

crazy alligator handler pleasure in simple things blog

open wide pleasure in simple things does naples

Yikes!  I would never get close to that one!  But, I did touch one of the smaller ones…of course it wasn’t possible for the one I touched to open his jaw the way the big one did!

I hope you enjoyed sharing my first alligator encounter on today’s Friday field trip!

touching an alligator pleasure in simple things blog

Thanks for stopping by!  Have a fabulous weekend and remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

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tommy bahama’s

March 10, 2017

Tommy Bahamas in Naples Florida

You know I love posting warm weather photos on snowy days!  Well, today we have snow here in Connecticut, so for Friday field trip I am posting photos from a recent business trip to Florida!

Tommy Bahama booth Naples pleasure in simple things blog
These photos are from a lunch at the original Tommy Bahamas!  Where is the original Tommy Bahamas?  In Naples, Florida.

Tommy Bahama table pleasure in simple things blog

Naples photos pleasure in simple things blog
Located on charming, historic Third Street South and a short walk from the Naples Pier,  the original Tommy Bahama Restaurant & Bar has been a part of the Naples scene of over 20 years.

Naples Tommy pleasure in simple things blog

A meal at Tommy Bahama’s was a nice way to spend some of an afternoon in Naples.

Tommy Bahama pleasure in simple things blog

The best part of lunch?  (No, not the key lime pie!)  Spending time with the people I shared it with. :)

Naples fish pleasure in simple things blog
Thanks so much for stopping by!

Naples store front pleasure in simple things blog

Naples store TB pleasure in simple things blog
Have a marvelous weekend and remember to take pleasure in simple things…like sharing a lunch with friends!

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its always in the details

March 3, 2017

Bedside Table revamp acessories pleasure in simple things blog

A February day with temps in the high 50’s?  What does that mean?  Furniture painting projects, of course!

Because of space limitations, nearly all my furniture redo projects are limited to the outdoors.  With the record breaking temperature last week, thoughts of tackling one of the projects in queue was inevitable.  I decided to start with a little bedside table that would be a straight-forward project.  The owner wants a simple, single color neutral as a finish.  And, even though I really want to paint the piece charcoal gray and sand and stain the top, I think it is important to create something the owner would truly love in her home.  Especially since the piece belonged to her great grandmother.

bBefore Mahogany Side table pleasure in simple things blog

The table just needs a little love to make it current.

For Friday field trip today, I am giving you a ‘before’ photo and a little hint of the details I have started to put together to make the piece perfect for the owner.  I am putting together some accessories to go with the finished piece to make it really personal to the recipient.

Bedside Table revamp drawer pull pleasure in simple things blog

Can you guess what color I am painting the piece?

Remember, the owner wants a neutral.  I will give you a hint that it is an Annie Sloan color.

Bedside Table drawer liner pleasure in simple things blog

Well, let me get back to work…

I hope you will join me on Tuesday to check out the finished piece!

Thank you so much for stopping by!  Remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

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open door tea

February 24, 2017

Open door tea desserts pleasure in simple things blog

Just like favorite shopping spots, I have my favorite healthy eating spots. The most frequented are the ones close to Interstate 95 since that is where I travel most  – along the Connecticut coastline.

Salad with warm squash pleasure in simple things blog

If I happen to be in Stratford, that favorite is Open Door Tea.  Relatively new, this gem was opened by a former nutritionist in an area health food store.  A small storefront nestled in a strip mall in Paradise Green (the geographical center of the town), it is easy to drive by this little cafe without noticing it.  Do yourself a favor and don’t drive by!  Stop in and have my favorite – The Open Door Salad – a wonderful salad topped with warm squash!

open door mural pleasure in simple things blog

There are also a few tasty specials on the daily menu in addition to the great selection of food and baked goods on the regular menu.

mural detail from open door tea pleasure in simple things blog

The friendly atmosphere is enhanced by a painted mural – a representation of the restaurant owner’s hometown in Poland.

Poland mural pleasure in simple things blog open door
A wide selection of hot teas is available as well as a selection of iced teas.

decorative cup pleasure in simple things blog

Treat yourself to a delicious and healthful meal at Open Door Tea if you should find yourself in the Stratford area.

teacups at open door pleasure in simple things blog

Thanks for stopping by for today’s Friday field trip.

a tea selection open door tea pleasure in simple things blogHave a wonderful weekend!  Remember to take pleasure in simple things…like enjoying a great lunch with a friend!  xo Jackie

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pippi longstocking house

February 17, 2017

Amelia Island shells pleasure in simple things blog

You heard my recent trip to Amelia Island left little leisure time.  But, I did get to see 3 items of particular interest while I was there.  The first was the oldest lighthouse in Florida.  Granted, I saw it from a distance, but I DID see it!  I wish I had the opportunity to visit it, but tours were not offered on a daily basis and, even if I had the free time, the tour wasn’t available on the day I spotted the lighthouse from afar.

The 2nd item of interest was the oldest bar in Florida.  I can’t say I went inside, but I did see it!  I heard the Bloody Mary’s were quite a spectacle – adorned with a skewer that included a shrimp and a hush puppy!

Amelia Island oldest bar in Fl

Lastly, and the most interesting to me, the third item of interest was the Pippi Longstocking house.   In 1988, the original Pippi story by children’s author Astrid Lindgren, was made into a movie, “The New Adventures of Pippi Longstocking” which was filmed entirely on Amelia Island, Florida.

Pippi Longstocking house pleasure in simple things blog

Most of the movie was filmed on Centre Street, in the quaint historic downtown Fernandina Beach, Amelia Island’s only city.  The ice cream shop in the movie was actually the oldest saloon in Florida that I mentioned above!

Pippi bookThe setting of much of the book and the movie was in Pippi’s dilapidated fictional house, the ‘Villa Villekulla.’  Though in the movie the house looked unkempt, disheveled, and badly in need of a fresh coat of white paint, the present state of the movie house looked a little different.  You can see that the weathered white clapboards so prominently featured in the film are currently an olive green siding!

Even if you hadn’t been a Pippi fan, the 146 year old house was something to see – known for having a wider variety of gingerbread motifs, such as sunbursts, fish scales, clovers, brackets, globes, scallops, circles, diamonds, and Maltese crosses than any other in Fernandina Beach, according to a historic museum tour guide.

If you have an interest in the Amelia Island or in the book Pippi Longstocking, you may want to watch the 1988 film “The New Adventures of Pippi Longstocking” described as a fantasy musical with a cast that included Eileen Brennan, Dick Van Patten and John Schuck.

Thanks for stopping by Friday field trip to Villa Villekulla!

Have a wonderful weekend and remember to take pleasure in simple things…like reading a favorite children’s story!   Jackie xo

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a stop at amelia island

February 10, 2017

Amelia Island sunrise pleasure in simple things blog

This is a great Friday field trip!  Why?  Well, we are experiencing a blizzard here in Connecticut.  And, with 12 inches of snow on the ground, I am transporting you on today’s field trip to a little resort town called Amelia Island in Florida.  I thought these beach photos might inspire some daydreaming about warmer places on a day like today!

sand Amelia Island pleasure in simple things blog

It was unfortunate that this first visit to Amelia Island was for a work trip since so little time was spent admiring the beautiful surroundings.

pretty sand Amelia Island pleasure in simple things blog

Seventeen hour work days don’t leave much time for leisure, but I did take a few moments each morning to stop and admire the sunrise.

pleasure in simple things amelia island sunrise 1

And, as you can see by the photos, they were glorious.

Ritz at Amelia Island pleasure in simple things

The Ritz-Carlton in Amelia Island provided many beautiful views.

sunrise in amelia island pleasure in simple things blog
I hope today’s field trip has you thinking of some warmer weather or a favorite beach. :)

sand chairs Amelia Island pleasure in simple things blog

shells at Amelia Island pleasure in simple things

“Live in the sunshine, swim in the sea, drink in the wild air…”  ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Amelia Island at sunrise pleasure in simple things blog

Thank you for stopping by.

sunrise photo pleasure in simple things blog

Have a wonderful weekend and remember to take pleasure in simple things…like a beautiful sunrise, Jackie xo

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valentines at terrain

January 27, 2017

succulents at Terrain Valentine pleasure in simple things blog

Today’s Friday field trip is to a familiar location if you frequent my blog.  I made a quick trip to Terrain this week between some work meetings, and I wanted to share some Valentine’s Day inspiration!  I always feel sorry for those of you that aren’t close enough to a Terrain to frequent it, but by sharing I hope I can inspire you just the same!

There are some signs of transitioning into spring with some new displays in the store…

Spring at Terrain Valentine pleasure in simple things blog

But looking around at inspiration for Valentine’s Day, there is plenty!  From the heart shaped planters…

heart planters Terrain pleasure in simple things blog

…to creative sweets!

Terrain Valentine heart candy pleasure in simple things blog

Chocolate valentine hearts at Terrain in Westport, Connecticut.

 

Terrain Valentine marshmallows pleasure in simple things blog

Some adorable heart shaped marshmallows at Terrain in Westport, Connecticut.

 

If you would rather buy a plant already potted, there are some cuties!

Terrain violets pleasure in simple things blog

Terrain Valentine succulents pleasure in simple things blog

I was inspired to create some plantings of my own when I saw these pretty drinking glasses in the sale section!  I bought a couple of these beauties as well as some ferns to create my own plantings!  Won’t these be adorable as planters?

Terrain sale glasses pleasure in simple things blog

I found one other item I want to use for a DIY.  Can you guess what I will use these for?  Hint…it is not for Valentine’s Day!

Fern notes Terrain pleasure in simple things blog

Thank you for joining me today for Friday field trip!  I hope I have given you a little Valentine’s Day inspiration – botanical style!

Ferns at Terrain pleasure in simple things blogHave a wonderful weekend and remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

 

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trying a golden latte

January 20, 2017

Heirloom Market pleasure in simple things blog

For Friday field trip today, I am taking you for a quick cup of latte and some toast.

This is served up in the Comstock Ferre & Co. building in the historic town of Old Wethersfield, Connecticut.  The Heirloom Market – an organic food company and café – is housed in the same building as the nation’s oldest seed company, founded in 1811.  Still selling Baker Creek Heirloom seeds, the company has stuck to its roots (pun intended).

pear toast pleasure in simple things blog

menu heirloom market pleasure in simple things blog

My visit was on a gloomy day and my intent was to try the golden latte at the market.  I have been doing some research on warm turmeric drinks and heard about the golden latte made with turmeric, so I ordered one and added a yummy pear toast!

visiting heirloom market pleasure in simple things blog

If you enjoy history, you will definitely want to check out this spot as well as the immediate area.  The Old Wethersfield Historic District is the largest historic district in the State of Connecticut and contains over 150 structures built prior to 1850.

Golden Milk at the heirloom market in Wethersfield

Thanks for stopping by!   I hope I have inspired you to stop in historic Wethersfield or to combine some ingredients to create your own delicious toast.  Join me Tuesday when I will talk about trendy turmeric drinks and share a recipe!

cider pleasure in simple things blog

Remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

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caring for a fiddle-leaf fig

January 6, 2017

Terrain in CT pleasure in simple thing

This week I welcomed a new addition to my household – though not actually a person, this new addition IS a living thing.  I got a new Ficus Lyrata.  Or, as it is commonly referred to, a fiddle-leaf fig.

For quite some time I have wanted to replace a plant that, until recently (RIP), had resided in a corner of my dining room for decades.   I used a Christmas gift certificate to my favorite home and garden store to acquire a replacement plant.  Because of the popularity of fiddle-leaf figs, particularly with decorators, shipments don’t last long at Terrain.  But because I visit the store often, I was able to catch a new shipment arriving.

fiddle-leaf fig plesaure in simple things blog

I spent a bit of time sizing up the contenders at Terrain.  After looking through them all, I found one I connected with…does that sound crazy?  So, with the help of one of my favorite (as well as lovely, knowledgeable and helpful)  Terrain associates, I reviewed the care required for my new household addition.  Knowing that too much love (aka over watering) was the number one reason for fatalities in this variety of plant, I took the suggestion to purchase a water meter.  It is a handy item to own and I do have the tendency to over love my houseplants!

a shipment of fiddle-leaf figs at Terrain

purchasing a fiddle-leaf fig at Terrain

Getting some help picking out a fiddle-leaf fig from one of my favorite Terrain associates in the Westport, CT store.

So, I brought my new addition home and, with his (I have no idea why I immediately decided its gender) large beautiful leaves, this bold plant is the perfect one for the bright corner in my dining room!

my new fiddle-leaf fig pleasure in simple things blog

My new fiddle-leaf fig in his new home!

I know many of you own one of these plants or would like to own one, so I am sharing tips for success, courtesy of Terrain, on today’s Friday field trip.

leaves of a fiddle-leaf fig pleasure in simple things blog

Light:  Fiddle-leaf figs prefer abundant, indirect light.  Too little light will cause the plant to lose leaves and thin out.  They also tend to grow towards the light, which can create a leaning shape.  Rotate the plant regularly to keep it growing straight and full.

Temperature:  Grow best in humid conditions with temperature consistently above 65 degrees.  It is best to place your fig outdoors in summer when the weather is hot and humid.  When the plant is indoors, place in an area with a consistent temperature and free from drafts.

moisture meter for plants pleasure in simple things blogWatering:  The fiddle-leaf fig thrives with short, dry periods between waterings.  Generally, water every 14 days – adjust depending on the amount of light your plant receives.  Water thoroughly, but be sure that the soil and pot can drain completely.  Do not allow the plant to sit in water, or it may suffer from leaf drop and root rot.

 

Tips:  Dust the leaves periodically to assure that the plant can absorb as much light as possible.  Use a soft, dry cloth to gently remove any dust buildup.  Do not dust with your hands, as rubbing the leaves can damage them and cause drops of white, milky sap to appear.

Hope this is helpful to fiddle-leaf fig owners or future owners!

my dining room fern pleasure in simple things blog

The only other houseplant in my dining room – this cute little fern.

Thanks for stopping by!  Have a wonderful weekend, Jackie

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a homage to christmas vacation

December 23, 2016

a Griswold family Christmas pleasure in simple things blog

Fans of the movie Christmas Vacation are in for a treat today!  I am taking you to a Connecticut Wally World – well, actually a ‘Wallingford World’ where the owner of a Wallingford, Connecticut farm has used his Christmas decorations to pay homage to the classic holiday movie starring Chevy Chase!

a christmas vacation chair pleasure in simple things blog

So, for something completely different, on today’s Friday field trip, I am sharing some of these elaborate Christmas Vacation decorations…definitely put together with a good sense of humor!  Enjoy!

a clark with lights pleasure in simple things bloga christmas vacation details

a crapper was full pleasure in simple things blog

This quote was revised after some neighborhood complaints!

a saucer record Christmas vacation

a bingo Christmas Vacation pleasure in simple things blog

a jello mold Christmas Vacation pleasure in simple things blog

a squirrel Christmas Vacation pleasure in simple things blog

a you couldn't hear Christmas Vacation pleasure in simple things blog

a jelly of the month Christmas Vacation pleasure in simple things blog

Thanks for stopping by!  

Have a blessed holiday weekend and, especially during this holiday season, remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie xo

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