Thursday, March 31, 2016

Remarried or starting over? Rosa's secret sauce to decorating dilemma's

Dear Rosa,

How to?
 Add my partners pieces from a previous life without stepping on toes? 

Rosa's Secret Sauce to solving a blended families decorating dilemma's

1.  Find the right spot for it:

First, find out how important that piece is to your partner. It may just be a TEMPORARY  spot filler. If that is the case approach it from the standpoint of looking for a piece that you BOTH love and replace it with that.

2. Have some fun!

 If it's something odd or quirky, have some fun with it and display it.  We all need something fun in our homes that speak to our personalities. 

3. Get Creative!


                                Update with a new look


                             Display it in a different 


Place it in a different room and use it in a different way

Thursday, March 10, 2016

How to blend lifestyles when your blending families the second time around

Since my last post, I had a couple more questions regarding blending lifestyles when starting over the second time around. Please feel free to reach out as this is a HOT topic.

1. My wife has a real hard time making a decision and is a bit more price conscious than I. I just want to get it done! How can I get her to make a decision and stop shopping around.

My suggestion would be to hire an interior designer and slow down. A designer would give your wife the appropriate information on selections of furniture sizes, fabrics and finishes to avoid making costly mistakes and help her make an informed decision as opposed to one based on instinct and cost. Oftentimes people buy things because they are on sale and at the moment look so pretty and actually it's the WRONG piece. They are either the wrong size or there is no place for it.

2.What do we do with all of the art work and photographs we have between the two of us and how and where do we hang everything that is important to both our pasts?

Start by sorting!  Look at all of the pictures you have and separate them into piles:
1. Keepers
2. Maybe's
3. Get rid off.

Keepers - Pieces either have  monetary or sentimental value. The Keepers  are those that  are really important to BOTH  of you.

Maybe's - you liked them once, maybe had them hanging in your old house and they looked pretty or filled a space - now you can't find a spot for them or they don't work in your new house. They may not work in the room you had them designated for - they could work in another room.

Get rid off -  they're either ugly or in bad shape or have bad memories - let someone else enjoy them.
My suggestion is to each sort through your own pieces and then sort through each of your stacks together. Try to be sensitive about the ones you love and hate.

If this blog was helpful, please let me know.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Make A Wish - Trailblaze Challenge

This time of year I seem to jump out of bed with a spring in my step and ready to embark on new challenges. With that being said, I would like to invite you to support my husband Rich and I who will be hiking 28.3 miles in one day for the Make-a-WishTrailblazer challenge on May 20th, 2016. 

Everyone is telling us how long that is going to take us and how crazy we are. We have been asked repeatedly - Do we actually know what we have gotten ourselves into? We are determined to succeed. This is not only a personal physical challenge but one that will raise money to impact the lives of children. I hope you will consider cheering us on and sponsoring us by going directly to our team page and helping us to make a wish come true for a child in NC.

It's going to be so much fun! We have been doing some urban hiking to train for this day and will follow up with some trail hiking.  If you are in the Charlotte area and see us walking around HONK and send us your support. 
Please consider sponsoring us on this Trailblazer challenge by going directly to my team page and making your contribution
Let's make a difference in the lives of children battling life-threatening illnesses in our community.

Thank you for your support

Friday, March 4, 2016

How to blend lifestyles when blending families

As spring approaches and wedding bells are on the horizon for many, I think about all of the people I know who are embarking on their second marriage. As exciting as this is, there is a little stress that comes with blending families and blending styles. In this newsletter, I will tackle a few things to consider  through an FAQ. If you or someone you know falls into this category please feel free to reach out as this is something I have had the joy of working with quite a bit.

Blending families and blending styles
3 Frequently Asked Questions

You've finally found the love of your life and now you are trying to create a new home that expresses the story of this new relationship. How do we handle this delicate topic of creating a new home by blending styles and not stepping on toes?
Below are 
three FAQ's and my best Design solutions.

1. HELP! My husband has kept lots of pieces from his college  and previous marriage days that he loves and wants to use in our new home, UNFORTUNATELY I hate them! What do we do?

Don't fret too much, he may hate a few of your pieces. I would suggest you put them aside, use everything that is important to both of you and then fill in holes with those extra pieces.  It could be that they get a new life by repainting them or with new upholstery. Perhaps his kids might want to take them to college.

2. Between the two of us, we have accumulated so many small pieces of furniture and accessories, how do we use them even though they are completely different styles and don't seem to match or work together?

I worked with a client a few years ago who dealt with this very same problem. We created a "Black Lion" room in one of her spare bedrooms where we put everything that we could not find a home for. We worked through the home placing furniture and accessories, and whenever we needed something, we first went to the Black Lion room to look for it. If we couldn't find the right piece we knew it was something we had to buy. You could potentially end up placing all of your Black Lion items in your home!
You might be surprised as to how different styles can actually work together.

3. My taste is very traditional and my wife says she prefers modern. How do we create a home that speaks to both of us and looks beautiful?

This can be tricky if you do not know how to do it. There is a fine line between balance in sizes, materials, textures and colors that can be accomplished, however it is easy to make a mistake. If you are really feeling challenged trying to incorporate this look, please reach out before you make a costly mistake.  As designers we are trained on different styles and know how to bring both traditional and modern styles together to complement each other. 

Feel free to send me your questions and I will do my best to answer.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Amazing short ribs cooked in the steam oven

I don't know if you are as impressed with the steam ovens as I am but for all of you foodies out there, I would like to share a of recipes that can be made in a steam oven. I think it's amazing, what do you think?

Marinated Short Ribs in Homemade BBQ Sauce
Via Thermador

2 pounds (910g) Beef Short Ribs
optional – minced fresh Basil, Oregano, Italian Parsley or other herbs of your choice
For the BBQ sauce:
2 Tablespoons Vegetable Oil
4 large cloves Garlic, minced
½ cup (123g) Ketchup
1/3 cup (80g) Tomato Sauce
1 Tablespoon Soy Sauce
2 Tablespoons Worcestershire Sauce
2 Tablespoons Brown Sugar
1 Tablespoon Molasses
1 teaspoon smoked Paprika
3 Tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar

Heat medium saucepan, then add vegetable oil. Add garlic and cook till tender and translucent.
Add remaining sauce ingredients: ketchup, tomato sauce, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar, molasses, smoked paprika and apple cider vinegar.
Simmer on low heat for about 10 minutes or until sauce thickens and well combined. Allow to cool completely.
In plastic bag, add short ribs and about ¼ cup of the bbq sauce, or just enough to coat the short ribs. Refrigerate and marinate for about 1 hour.
Pre-heat steam convection oven on Steam and Convection mode at 300 degrees.
Place short ribs in baking dish and pour the remaining sauce over the ribs, tossing to coat completely. Cook ribs for 2 hours or until ribs are tender. About every 20 minutes, baste the ribs with sauce and half way through cooking, flip the ribs over so they will cook evenly. Cooking time will vary depending on size of ribs.
Before serving baste with additional sauce over the ribs. Garnish with minced herbs (optional) or serve with your favorite vegetable or salad.
Serves 3-4.
Remove from oven allow to rest for 5-10 minutes.

If you'd like to see a few more recipes that can be made in a steam oven visit Subzero-Wolf's pdf cookbook, it's incredible.

Via Wolf

“IMPOSSIBLE” New Dishes Made Easy
Case in point: filo-wrapped ice cream. Hot, delicate, crispy-brown pastry surrounds ice cream
still firmly frozen. Astonishing. And impossible for any other oven.

Let me know what you think!