Summer Lovin’

Happy Friday!  It feels like summer is finally here to stay, thank goodness.  Don’t you love how relaxed everything becomes, from the clothes we wear to the way we entertain?  The seasonal shopping bug bit me recently, so I thought  I’d share a few of my warm-weather discoveries.  Chill the white and cue the sunshine!Does anything say summer more than seersucker?  This tablecloth arrived on my doorstep today and I can’t wait to break it out for a casual al fresco dinner.gSKj6_1-86LOCm6hLDh_YVDKc2MEz3J5ge04TLAqVvZ4G4rPmejb7HfN5jo-aEsLP2HyiGSKKLJFiLHcaxs=s1100-cThese  oyster shell salt cellars will be the perfect finishing touch to your summer table.Juliska’s rope detailed wicker caddy  is weathered and vaguely nautical without being theme-y.My official drink of summer is well chilled Lillet Blanc with a slice of orange or plum.  It’s also fantastic over ice with a big splash of Pellegrino and a little splash of Grand Marnier. But I would advise against trying to quick chill your Pellegrino by putting it in the freezer then forgetting about it.  Why, oh why, did I not set a timer?!  If anyone knows how to undo this mess, I’m all ears.  Though it is keeping me out of the ice cream, so maybe I should leave it.  I’ll be cooking from this book all summer long.  The recipes are simple, delicious, and focus on ingredients from your garden (or farmers’ market).  The roasted cherry tomato and goat cheese dip was a huge crowd pleaser at our first summer get-together.

This bad boy was my Mother’s Day present (yes, I asked for it – it was not a vacuum-cleaner-for-Christmas type situation).  So far I’ve smoked a pork shoulder and baby back ribs, both of which were amazing, the first of which took over 8 hours (getting us to the table at 11:30pm).  Lesson learned.

This raffia bag has been on my shoulder every day since the weather turned warm.  Light weight, sturdy, and roomy, it is the quintessential summer bag.Speaking of bags, I literally did a happy dance when my monogrammed clutch and laptop case arrived in the mail.  Buttery soft and beautifully made, they are the essence of simple chic.  I love the summery, grass green (obviously) but it comes in over 50 colors, monogram optional.  And the price point can’t be beat!

I picked up this striped jersey maxi skirt for a song.  Super soft and flattering (even with the horizontal stripes), it will go over my swimsuit as a quick cover up, or out to dinner with a knotted-at-the-waist white button-down.  And it’s an extra 25% off the sale price online right now with code SUMMERTIME.Warm weather begs for a LWD, and this one can go from casual Saturday night barbecue to dressed up Sunday brunch.And finally, it wouldn’t be summer to me without hydrangeas.  I’ve had great luck with the Endless Summer variety – each year I plant them in big pots on our porch, then transfer them into the ground before the first frost.

Images 1-4, 7, 8,10 & 11 from corresponding highlighted retail sites; 5, 6 & 9 via me,  12 via Martha Stewart.

Farmers Market Friday

This morning I made a quick trip to the Lake Bluff Farmers Market and could not resist snapping a few photos.  I, without fail, spend every bit of cash I have on hand whenever I go.

DSC_0195From the fresh squeezed lemonade/limeade stand.

I can’t wait to put some of these in an omelette.

This is always my favorite flower stand.  I had them make up this bouquet of peonies and cornflower:

which matches the outfit.  Not on purpose.  SO happy my hydrangeas are blooming!  I know, we need mulch.  Don’t get me started on the landscaping.

Flower Lust

The flowers for this weekend’s dinner party were insanely gorgeous and I cannot take credit.  Molly Flavin, the amazing florist and owner of Molly Flavin Floral Designs, filled our house with the lush and fragrant blooms of spring.  Peonies, ranunculus, hydrangea, grape hyacinth, and cherry blossom branches  – all favorites – provided the perfect backdrop for a lovely evening.

front hall arrangement, above and below

white ranunculus in the powder room, above

white hydrangeas in the dining room

cherry blossom branches and hydrangeas in the living room, above and below

grape hyacinth on the bar, above and below

hydrangea and ranunculus in my favorite French opaline glass vase

The white ranunculus are now on my bedside chest and the grape hyacinth have moved to the kitchen, where we spend most of our time.  If only they could last until spring actually arrives!

all images via the aesthete and the dilettante