Monday, August 31, 2009

Finally... some Facebook Answers

pic from

One thing I really preferred about My Space to Facebook was the ability to see who had left me hanging on my "request for friendship" (that phrase never fails to make me laugh!) Well I have found the application that only not allows you to view the pending requests.... you can CANCEL the request too. I mean, come on.... if you aren't able to respond within a reasonable amount of time, I don't want you either tootz ;) Here's the app You're welcome :D xo, Brie

Sunday, August 30, 2009

I want that!

Caroline yells this phrase only about 100 times a day during her tv viewing - from the snuggie to the zhu zhu fake hamster pets.... this girl wants it all! She is an advertiser's dream.

Just saw this cardigan on the Lilly site and I can't help myself.... "I want that!" xo, Brie

Saturday, August 29, 2009

In love

With this book....

Can't. Put. It. Down. Will not sweat out the 3 week loan :) Have a great weekend! xo, Brie

Friday, August 28, 2009

Calling All Crafters

I finally pulled up my boot straps and dove into the sewing area head first. I have listed some great jacquard ribbon lots (some are really hard to find) on ebay !!
Just thought you would like to know :) xo, Brie
PS Just finished book 3 Eclipse, now onto 4 - My Life in France!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Summer Reading

I made an announcement early this year that I would read seven books this summer. Seven is a lot for me, I have never been much of a reader. Don't get me wrong, I love a good book. It's finding the time and don't forget I am very easily diverted!

I am almost done my third book of the summer and the third in the Twilight series, Eclipse. I like them, I would love to tell you that I love them but am going to leave it at I like them. I am a little more than half way through (these books are long, this one is over 600 pages, it's light enjoyable reading though) PS I'm still on team Jacob :)

I have my 4th book on deck just in from the library and I can't wait to read it!!

I only have it for 3 weeks (clock started ticking yesterday) so I need to cruise through Eclipse to get this done!

Time is running out but I'm no quitter! First day of fall is officially September 22 and I am feeling a second wind coming on. Hurricane Danny seems to want to help me get this done too - looks like he is fixing to make my weekend a washout! What's your favorite book of the summer? xo, Brie

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Gramma Gert's Fudge

I know I've told you about the great Gramma Gert and I think I might have mentioned her deeeelicious fudge!

We loved it when Gram would come to visit! I can still see her now emerging out of the exit ramp to the plane (back in the day when you were allowed to meet someone right off their flight), with her white hair freshly curled, her long black lambs wool coat that I thought was so beautiful and glamorous, and her humongous green suitcase with a giant florescent red pom pom on the top that she made to prevent someone else who also happened to have a humongous green suitcase from being confused and trying to take hers by mistake.

Gram's visits meant I had a roommate (she always stayed with me), lots of card games, and FUDGE! My job in the fudge making was to break up the walnuts. Nobody could make the fudge quite like Gram - it's all about getting the temperature right. With a candy thermometer, it's kind of easy but without one it's hard!! Gram would test the readiness of the boiling the fudge by dripping the smallest amount into a cold glass of water. If the fudge turned into a ball - the fudge was ready. I haven't a clue how to determine this so I stick with the thermometer.

Gram was famous for three kinds of fudge, that to this day, I still have trouble deciding which one like best - chocolate, white, or panucci.

After some scientific research, I can tell you the most requested in this house is the chocolate (sans walnuts to my dismay).

I have my handy dandy sous chef here and we're ready to roll

Here is what you'll need

2 cups of white granulated sugar
4 tbsp of unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tbsp of butter
2/3 cup of milk (her recipe calls for evaporated but I NEVER have that in the house and regular milk is A OK)

Have a pie plate lightly butter and the marshmallow fluff on standby

Put everything into a pan on the stove and bring to a boil stirring constantly (I always use the heat resistant spatulas to stir) Keep your candy thermometer in there (most have a little clip for hands free measurements) after somewhere between 6-8 minutes of constant stirring, remove from heat when thermometer reads 260 degrees (hard ball stage)

Place pan in a cool bath and stir in a heaping spoonful of marshmallow fluff. Mix it all in well. Pour mix into the buttered pie dish and slice after about 10 minutes.

Then say goodbye to the fudge because it will not last long!! One taste and I feel 9 again and ready for a game of crazy eights with Gram. I miss her so much, but love that something like this can bring her right back to me. xo, Brie

Tuesday, August 25, 2009


Caroline and I are making fudge tomorrow on here. Be there or be square! xo, Brie

Monday, August 24, 2009

Dining Room Edition

This is a once a week project but because I was late to the party, you get to peek inside 2 days in a row. Lucky you :)

Today we are doing the dining room, this space served as my sewing area for a few years - nice, right? I never really had any pressure to host a holidays in the past because my parents lived 10 minutes away and my in laws were an hour away. My parents moved to the Cape full time in 2000, so I felt it was a sign to get my rear in gear and furnish this room so I could play hostess from time to time :) I am soooo glad we finally did it! I love playing hostess and hanging in here when we have friends over for dinner.

This room sits right off the living room. In fact I am standing in the open doorway to take this shot. It's not very spacious, and a little on the dark side with this only window, but truth be told we spend very little time in here and that time is mostly in the evening hours so it works out fine.

We bought this china cabinet a few years ago as joint birthday gifts to ourselves. I love having it, it felt like a luxury purchase but boy oh boy did I feel a bit ashamed after unpacking our lovely wedding gifts of Waterford crystal and Lenox china that had sat lonely in boxes in our basement for over 10 years. It's nice to have everything out on display.

I chose this chandelier for it's casual meets fancy feel. At Christmas time I like to hang little teeny glass ball ornaments in red, green, and white from it (stole this idea from my mother in law). You can see my aqua gurgling cod up top on the right. I love that pitcher which was a birthday gift from my sister last year.

The long wooden centerpiece was a gift from my Grammer Fuller. It is an antique bread board (that belonged to her) and I love decorating with it! Apples in the fall look cute, little pumpkins around Halloween etc etc.

This is the first piece of original artwork I ever purchased by local artist Anne Turnley. I love the colors and her style of painting reminds me of my Grammer Fuller's style. Artwork and picture hanging has always been a great challenge for me. Hanging it, grouping it, selecting it etc etcHere is the back left wall with a buffet and mirror from my mother in law's old dining room. They say mirrors make your space appear bigger and this is one of many rooms where I could use an optical illusion :) xo, Brie

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Living Room Tour

Following One Fabulous Mom's lead, I have taken a few pics of our living room for your viewing pleasure :)

This is a fun exercise because: A. it forces you to look at your own space with a more critical eye as you take pictures to post and share and B. it motivates you pick up things like a bocce ball set that has been lying underneath your piano since May!!

Before I reveal all the pics, I will embarrassingly share that this room remained EMPTY for years after we bought the house. This is the first and only house we have owned and the living room seemed like such a luxury verses necessity, so it was a big old empty room for toys for longer than I care to admit. Unfortunately it is directly to your right in an open doorway when you walk through the front door, so the wide open barren space was a bit of an eye sore.

Almost 100% of the actual furniture in this room was inherited. I was afraid the fabrics and colors might not work with the existing dining room that is adjacent to this room (also with an wide open doorway) but I think it works just fine and no longer fret over these types of things and it looks a whole lot better than the brightly colored plastic climb-on toy that lived in there for 4 years prior ;)

So without further ado... I give you my preppy pink and green living room!

The couch, chairs, rug, coffee table and end tables all belonged to my parents, when they moved to the Cape full time their house didn't include a formal living room so we hit the jackpot :) I remember going to the furniture place when I was little to choose this set. They had different fabrics on them at the time, but I clearly remember thinking they were the fanciest, most beautiful furniture I had ever seen.

The plant stand was inherited by Mr. KB's mother. I love it!! I am having some serious troubles keeping a plant alive in there - the aqua globe failed me! Any suggestions for a mid size plant that doesn't require an excessive amount of maintenance would be greatly appreciated.

Another view of the empty plant stand and right wall. The shades (just cut out of the shot) are a natural bamboo and I love them b/c they offer privacy while still providing light when pulled down. I keep them up like this a lot to keep an eye on the kids while they play and ride their bikes out front. My sister Keely made me the drapes and I think she did a great job - I love them! I made the throw pillows on the chairs and didn't do a very good job on them! I was my first time attempting a pillow cover with beading but they just sit there, so they look fine. I love the pink and green animal toile fabric on them.

Here you can see the bamboo shades and one of my favorite green glass witch balls (a gift from my late great Aunt Hat) I love colored glass and have a thing for these glass balls. I added the french wired pink and green striped ribbon for fun.

Here is a fairly unexciting view of the left back corner. The upholstered seat was one of my first ebay purchases. I think I paid 100 dollars for it, still not quite sure what to with it, but I love the little palm tree Lee Joffa fabric on it. On the wall you will see an original oil crayon artwork by my daughter Kay done in grade 5.

I made these shades for the sconces out of the same fabric on the drapes and embellished them with a braided pom pom trim.

Two years ago my Uncle Mark gave us his late mother's and accomplished pianist Ursula's piano. It is a beautiful baby grand piano with ivory keys and plays beautifully. Kay started taking lessons as soon as we got it. The boys haven't expressed much interest but Ms. C is chomping at the bit to learn to play... maybe soon :) The bench is a very intricate and beautiful needlepoint covered seat. Unfortunately our last name begins with "M" - I haven't had the heart to recover it but may loosely cover it and just tape underneath with the same fabric I have on the chair throw pillows.

I once read in a decorating magazine that it is considered tacky or something to display pictures of your family around your house. Well the author of that article is not invited over anytime soon, because I love family photos and have them all over my house (and piano)!

My Grammer Fuller painted the black tray you see hanging on the back wall behind the piano. She is an amazing artist and used to give painting lessons in her home. Unfortunately I didn't not inherit her talent for painting.

I'm never sure if this rocker really goes here, but it was my college graduation gift from my late Gramma Gert and it's staying. I think of her every time I see it.

Last but not least (I think I've shown these before but I really love them.....) They are plaques painted by Virginia artist Nancy Thomas and were gifts from my parents and each month represents the month each of the kids were born. I remember when I was pregnant with Ms. C - her due date was August 1st. I didn't really love the July plaque so I was hoping she'd be on time or late for the August one :) ridiculous, but true! Hope you have enjoyed the tour. I think we're doing the dining room next! xo, Brie

Saturday, August 22, 2009


We are tossing around some Halloween ideas as the catalogs are getting a jump start and rolling in with all kinds of scantily clad costume suggestions for my daughters - which is not going to happen.

I had a great idea tonight for the boys... check it out

this is better than Bert and Ernie!! Wouldn't you love to see these 2 at your door on Halloween? My suggestion was met with a "no way" in unison but it's only August and I'm persistent :) xo, Brie

Friday, August 21, 2009

Currently Coveting

I am hoping that a few of these will find their way into my wardrobe in the near future :)
Fashions courtesy of Boden, LL Bean, and Kohls xo,Brie

fall favorites 2009
fall favorites 2009 by keeksandbrie on

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Time to Refocus

As I browse the blogs that I like to read the most (you know who you are) I find myself drawn to certain topics - cooking, gardening, business, decorating, nostalgia, reading, organizing, shopping, and family. Since these are the things I like, I am going to try to refocus my blog to work around these types of themes for my own posts. I'd like to post more regularly and sticking to this kind of outline may help :)

So here we go... this is a cooking/recipe post. Go grab an apron and chef's hat because today we are making salad! My friend posted this great NY Times piece a few weeks ago with 101 fresh salads for summer. This one is a keeper!!

Here's what you need:

grape tomatoes
pine nuts
white beans
olive oil
fresh lemon

First up - fire up your grill and then go inside and slice up your eggplant (leave the skin on) brush with some olive oil and sprinkle with some salt and pepper. Grill the eggplant on both side until done.

As an aside: if you landscaper happens to arrive early to cut the lawn and you are still in your pj's - I say go get dressed over trying to wait it out or your eggplant may become slightly overdone, like so!

TIP!! Cut up your eggplant pieces with a pizza cutter to make nice little squares (don't make them too small or it will be too mushy)

Toss your cut up eggplant in a bowl.
Put your pine nuts in a dry frying pan to toast up a little (keep your eye on them because those little suckers will burn up quick if you take your eyes off them!)
Cut the grape tomatoes in half
Drain and rinse one can of white beans
Toss everything in a bowl and add olive oil, juice of one lemon, and some more salt and pepper.

Serve it up in a toasted whole grain pita and you've got yourself one delicious healthy low carb lunch! I am seriously watching my intake and upping the exercise after a most indulgent and fabulous summer :D
The leftovers stores well in a Tupperware in the fridge for several days!

For a full list of all 101 salads, click here! This recipe is number 27, you will notice I changed it to suit my needs slightly :) xo, Brie

Monday, August 17, 2009

I'm back...........

Summer vacation is officially over :( We packed up and left the Cape this am to head back to Jersey for good. I have lots of pictures and stories to share so stay tuned :) xo, Brie