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naples botanical garden

June 27, 2017

Naples succulent pleasure in simple things blog

June is coming to an end and since Friday’s post this week will be the monthly giveaway, today will be more like a field trip.  I shared my favorite exhibit in the Naples Botanical Garden in a post this month…it was a temporary exhibit called Origami in the Garden. (Click here if you missed it!)

Today, in keeping with my garden focus, I am sharing my favorite floral spot in that garden.  And, guess what?  The flowers aren’t white!  I know – out of character, but can you see why I fell for this gorgeous spot in The Naples Botanical Garden?

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Once in a while, I am a sucker for some color!  Like this:

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Talk to you again on Friday.  If you haven’t entered the book giveaway for June, you have a couple more days.  I will pick the winner at midnight on Thursday.  Click here to leave a comment on the giveaway post to be entered to win.  Good luck!

Docent Naples botanical garden

A docent at the Naples Botanical Garden in Naples, Florida.

Thanks for stopping by!   Remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

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artisan details

June 23, 2017

green moss and gray ribbon

I know not everyone gets as caught up in details as I do.  Some of the details of an event that really get me jazzed are things like paper products, fabric, ribbon, favors, flowers…

silk and willow package

Beauty is absolutely in the details and I often obsess over many of them when I am planning an event.  The details are what really ‘bring it home’ when creating an aesthetic.

Silk and Willow ribbon packaging

Today on Friday field trip, I am sharing with you a supplier that is fabulous for some of these details.   Silk & Willow creates labor-intensive plant dyed silk ribbon presented on hand carved and stained Acacia wood spools.  Can you see how a detail loving person like me would go nuts over a product like this?!

ribbon from plant dyed

The heirloom quality plant dyed silk ribbon is not the only product available from Silk & Willow.  Other artisan quality items include handmade paper, handspun twine, and 100% natural fiber table linens.

table runner silk and willow

To illustrate my point, the photos on today’s post are from a recent Silk & Willow order.  Can you see how a detail like a ribbon or a table runner can be transformed by the choice of your supplier?  These handcrafted details cannot be duplicated and truly make a special occasion special.

moss and ribbon

I hope you have enjoyed the photos on today’s Friday field trip.  To see more about Silk & Willow, located in Hudson Valley, New York, visit their gorgeous website.

spool silk and willow ribbon

Thanks for stopping by!

gray table runner silk and willow

Have a really fabulous weekend and remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

P.S.  I wasn’t asked to endorse Silk & Willow and I have not received any consideration in exchange for this post.

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the fountain at the breakers, palm beach

June 16, 2017

Front view Breakers Fountain

This month I have been on something of a plant/garden kick…it always happens this time of year.  I love go to nurseries and I love admiring plants and great plantings and containers.  Of course, part of the whole garden experience is to add some interesting features.  I have been thinking about and admiring water features of late and it got me thinking of the great fountain I saw on my recent Palm Beach trip.

Alligator detail Breakers Fountain

The great fountain I am talking about sits in front of the iconic Breakers Hotel.

Breakers Fountain

Of course it is not a water feature I could ever have in my garden, but I thought I would share it’s beauty with you on today’s Friday field trip.

boy fountain detail The Breakers

boy with alligator fountain detail

When I stayed at the hotel, I saw more photos staged in front of this fountain than in front of the magnificent coastline – certainly that was the case with new brides and grooms at the hotel!

Fountain detail and palms

No matter what it’s form, you certainly can not beat the sound of water to create a sense of calm!

close up Breakers fountain

Thanks so much for stopping by!

Flag front Breakers

Have a fabulous weekend and remember to take pleasure in simple things – like the sound of water in a fountain!  xo Jackie

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shakespeare’s garden in brookfield, ct

June 9, 2017

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My friends have been holding out on me!  They have just recently shared what is currently one of my favorite nurseries!

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Shakespeare’s Garden in Brookfield, Connecticut now joins a list that includes places like White’s Flower Farm and Terrain.

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What makes a great nursery?  For me, three important criteria!  First, and foremost, creativity!  The plants need to be presented in a beautiful way…with creative, imaginative, and even innovative added to the mix!

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Of course, plants can easily be purchased at a local grocery or warehouse store.  So, for a nursery to become a favorite means the plants aren’t just offered for sale, but are displayed in a creative way.

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The second way to become a favorite is to have plenty of unique containers for plantings.  Vintage pieces or repurposed items used as planters are an example.  I’m looking for containers that help create an organic look or enhance the beauty of the planting it contains.

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The third criteria is for the nursery to employ a knowledgeable staff.  I want to be able to ask a question about caring for a particular plant or about the habit of a perennial I am purchasing and be confident I am getting an educated response.

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Those are my top three.  The bonus number four for me is a great gift shop!  Finding some unique and aesthetically beautiful items for sale is always a plus!

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Because Shakespeare’s Garden checked all the boxes for me – including the bonus item (!) – I am including some photos I took on my visit for today’s Friday field trip.

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I hope they have inspired you in some way!  Shakespeare’s Garden is worth a visit if you are in commuting distance.

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Have a wonderful weekend!  Remember take pleasure in simple things – like visiting a favorite nursery!  xo Jackie

P.S. If you go, remember to say hello to Romeo – the resident cat.

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dominique ansel bakery

June 2, 2017

May's Ansel Cronut Flavor

A trip to a bakery seems an appropriate Friday field trip today on National Donut Day!

We are not visiting just any bakery, but the bakery of James Beard award-winning pastry chef, Dominique Ansel.

Dominique Ansel blossoming hot chocolate

Blossoming Hot Chocolate at Dominique Ansel Bakery.

Chef Dominique took New York City by storm when he launched his, now signature pastry, the Cronut!  New Yorkers waited (and still do) in long lines for the opportunity to taste one!

The tasty croissant-doughnut Chef Dominique created was named one of the ‘Best Inventions of 2013’ by Time magazine in the year it was introduced.

raspberry Earl Grey Cronut at Ansel

May’s special Cronut flavor at Dominique Ansel Bakery – Raspberry Earl Grey with Earl Grey Sugar.

Chef Dominique’s unique, delectable treats have earned him international recognition with bakeries in Tokyo and London, as well as New York City.  Consistently creating innovative desserts, while maintaining an incredible level of deliciousness, is the Ansel standard.

raspberry coconut pavlova ansel

On my most recent visit to the New York bakery, the new, flavorful kiwi sorbet bar instantly became my favorite Ansel creation of the moment.  This refreshing treat is made up of a kiwi flavored sorbet paired with Tahitian vanilla ice-cream.

Dominique Ansel kiwi sorbet bar

A new, refreshing kiwi sorbet creation by Dominique Ansel.

With some added poppy seeds and a ‘fuzzy’ chocolate exterior, the confection closely resembles an actual kiwi fruit.  Magnificent in both aesthetics and taste!

Ansel Bakery kiwi sorbet bar

I hope you enjoyed today’s visit to the Dominique Ansel Bakery for Friday field trip.

Dominique Ansel Bakery in NYC

Thanks for stopping by!  Have a fabulous weekend!

Remember to take pleasure in simple things – like tasting a fabulous donut on National Donut Day!  xo Jackie


living the cabana life

May 26, 2017

secluded cabana The Breakers

Today, for Friday field trip, let’s imagine what it is like to have a private cabana on Palm Beach!

A great idea on a gray and rainy day!  If you were to stay at The Breakers Palm Beach and lounge in a private cabana, it would look like this:

couch in cabana

Cold drinks, and sunscreen would be provided….but, most importantly, so would this view!

lounge chair view

cabana view

And, these ‘beachy’ details!

cabana kitchen

beach club at breakers

nautical wall fixture

beach painting

I hope you have been enjoying the Palm Beach inspiration this month.  I can’t believe how fast the month is coming to a close!  Have a wonderful weekend!

Thanks for stopping by!  Remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

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the breakers palm beach ocean views

May 19, 2017

Spa pool The Breakers

The best part of Palm Beach?  THE BEACH!

breakers sunrise

Start with the Palm Beach sunrise…each day unique!

Here in Connecticut the weather has been more like Palm Beach than typical New England – in the 90’s and humid!  So, it is the perfect day to imagine relaxing by the ocean in Florida!  Sit back and enjoy Friday field trip today – Palm Beach – Breakers style!  Enjoy!

beach chairs at The Breakers

life guard station The Breakers

pool at The Breakers

umbrellas on the beach The Breakers

The Breakers Beach

water floats at The Breakers

windy surf The Breakers

stairs to fitness center The Breakers

overlooking umbrellas The Breakers

Hanging out at Palm Beach at The Breakers is the best, isn’t it?  Thanks so much for stopping by!

Have a fabulous weekend!  Remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie xo

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cocktails with a view

May 12, 2017

fish at The Breakers bar Palm Beach

The Seafood Bar, located in the historic Breakers hotel, was completely reimagined around its stunning Atlantic backdrop in late December 2016 and we are visiting it today on Friday field trip.

hello seafood bar
This place lets you experience the allure of the yachting lifestyle with great nautical details, beautiful new aquariums, and a front-row seat to ocean views.

ocean view at seafood bar

Of the two large aquariums housed in the Seafood Bar, the most spectacular is the one that creates the bar itself.

detail of bar seafood bar

Fish bar at The Breakers

It makes sitting at the bar an amazing sensory experience – looking ahead is a view of the ocean and looking down is a view of fish swimming under the spot you placed your drink!

light detail at seafood bar

The Seafood Bar serves lunch and dinner. Cocktails are offered at the bar until 1 am.

seafood bar menu

The beverage menu is wonderful. For something tropical and a little different to try, there is a watermelon jalapeno or a smoked coconut margarita. Local drafts are offered, as well as a great selection of alcohol free elixirs. My favorite is a coconut lavender lemonade made with lemon juice, coconut water and lavender simple syrup! Craft sodas are another great alcohol free option – like an organic summer pear!

restaurant at the seafood bar

The Seafood Bar is definitely Palm Beach life at its best!

seafood bar detail

Thanks for stopping by!  Have a wonderful weekend!

P.S.  If you are wondering about the maintenance involved with this unique bar – hours are spent each morning cleaning both the inside (delicately) and outside of the tank!

Remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie



April 21, 2017

removing wallpaper

I was reminded today of my word for the year- treasure.

wallpaper removed

I walked by my daughter’s old room and was flooded with emotion. Right now the room is in the process of being redecorated and I can’t help but think of the last time I decorated that room. I had emulated the vibe of the Polynesian hotel at Universal Studios in Florida that my daughter loved so well. Mahogany furniture, golds, elephants parading around the ceiling on the wallpaper border… all the little details I used to try and capture my daughter’s imagination by bringing back memories from a family trip to Florida.

Polynesian room decor

I usually never post ‘before’ photos until I have the ‘after’ photos that go along with them. But, for Friday field trip today, I am treasuring the ‘before’ of the room of a little girl…my favorite little girl.


Now that girl is moving out…what will become of the room? You will have to wait for the ‘after’ photos to find out!

Have a wonderful weekend! Remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

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anthropologie westport

April 7, 2017

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Today, on Friday field trip, these photos from the reopened Anthropologie in Westport, Connecticut are sure to inspire!

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A homage to the former occupant of the building…the Westport YMCA.

The new store, located in the middle of town, is larger than the former location on the Post Road with plenty of room for some exciting surprises – like a section of wedding merchandise from sister store BHLDN (one of the 15 nationwide)!

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Thanks for stopping by!  Have a wonderful weekend!

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Remember to take pleasure in simple things – like window shopping at the new Anthropologie in Westport!  xo Jackie

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