Home Bunch Feature!

I’ve had a love affair with Home Bunch since I first moved to California.  Moving from the East coast was quite a transition and meant a change of lifestyle.  Life here is geared to the outdoors and I wanted my home to lend itself to that…easy, bright, comfortable and welcoming.  Luciane’s blog Home Bunch was such an inspiration with gorgeous homes from all over!  But best of all, she lists sources for everything, including furniture, light fixtures, cabinet hardware and yes, paint colors!  It has been an invaluable tool in finding that elusive something.

You can imagine how thrilled I was to have Luciane reach out to me to see if I would like to have The Little Glass House featured on her Beautiful Homes of Instagram.  YES!!  I dug through pictures, tried to remember sources, wrote a short synopsis about the house and she put together a beautiful comprehensive house tour. See it here. So cool!

If you want to see some truly beautiful homes, please check out her blog or you can also find Home Bunch on Instagram.  I know you will love it as much as I do.

The Little Glass House

 

springtime in big sur

Big Sur is rugged, majestic, breathtaking, and awe inspiring, but it is never more beautiful than in the Spring.  The grass is green from the winter rains, and poppies and wild flowers bloom with abandon up and down the coast.

Here is a pictorial trip from two magical weeks spent in this slice of heaven.  Photos are my own or taken by my talented daughter, Kelsey Burns.

Springtime in Big Sur
Vista from Highway 1  Photo: Kelsey Burns
Springtime in Big Sur
Wisteria draped arbor at Deetjen’s Big Sur Inn      Photo: Kelsey Burns
Springtime in Big Sur
Deetjen’s   Photo: Kelsey Burns
Springtime in Big Sur
Sand Dollar Beach
Springtime in Big Sur
Fog and surf at Sand Dollar Beach
Springtime in Big Sur
The A-frame house, Wild Bird seen from Highway 1
Springtime in Big Sur
The trail to Partington Cove
Springtime in Big Sur
The tunnel under the mountain leading to the cove…
Springtime in Big Sur
A sea of clovers Photo: Kelsey Burns
Springtime in Big Sur
Aquamarine water at Paradise Cove
Springtime in Big Sur
The view from Lucia Lodge restaurant is one of the best as are the fish and chips!
Springtime in Big Sur
Mountain pinks and poppies brighten even the foggiest day
Springtime in Big Sur
Cotton candy skies
Springtime in Big Sur
Rosé and an endless blue ocean  Photo: Kelsey Burns
Springtime in Big Sur
Grasses and wildflowers along Highway 1 Photo: Kelsey Burns
Springtime in Big Sur
A Nepenthe Ambrosia burger is a must on every visit…   Photo: Kelsey Burns
Springtime in Big Sur
McWay Falls is always a sight!  Photo: Kelsey Burns
Springtime in Big Sur
Pull off almost any part of Highway 1, and you will see beauty
Springtime in Big Sur
The bright yellow of mustard seed is prolific this time of year
Springtime in Big Sur
Night falling over Big Sur
Springtime in Big Sur
Until next time…

 

 

killer blood orange margaritas

I have shared this recipe before, but I believe with warmer weather on the way, it should be shared again.  It’s that good!  I served these to friends this past weekend and the next day one friend wrote : “I know what those cocktails should be called; KILLER!  The color is totally appropriate!

Just remember, I warned you!

I found this recipe in Food & Wine magazine.  Chef Dean Fearing created this drink which is a best seller at his wife Lynae’s popular Dallas restaurant Shinsei.  “The sweet-tart blood orange flavor intensifies the margarita-ness of it. ” (I think the tequila may have something to do with that too!) I halved the recipe for a smaller gathering…

Killer Blood Orange Margaritas
Intense color and flavor is what makes them so appealing!

Blood Orange Margaritas

Ingredients:

  • 1 quart fresh blood orange juice
  • 1 ½ cups fresh lime juice
  • 1 ½ cups Cointreau
  • 3 ½ cups silver tequila
  • Kosher salt

Instructions:

  1. In a large pitcher, mix the blood orange juice with the lime juice, Cointreau and silver tequila.  Refrigerate until chilled, at least 30 minutes.
  2. Spread a small mound of salt on a small plate.  Moisten the outer rim of 12 martini glasses with the orange wedge, then dip the rims into the salt to lightly coat.
  3. Add ice to the pitcher and stir well, then strain into the prepared glasses.  Garnish each margarita with a blood orange slice and a sage sprig and serve.  (I omitted this step but had some blood orange slices in the pitcher)
  4. Enjoy!!
Blood Orange Margaritas
This is a picture from last year. This years blood oranges were an even more intense shade as seen in the feature picture.

still so much to be done…

I get asked on a daily basis, “how is Montecito doing?”  The short answer is, they are working hard and moving forward but there is still so much to do. The cost of digging out the mud for one home can be upwards of $200,000!  Unfortunately, insurance does not often cover it.  Then, there is the difficult job of finding contractors who will remove the mud.  Enter the Santa Barbara Bucket Brigade.  It was conceived over the kitchen table by Abe Powell and Tom Cole which they started with their own personal funds.  Costs per week are $25,000 for equipment, storage, food, porta-potties, and more to keep the hundreds of volunteers going.  They have done so much already but there is so much more to do.

Some of the Bucket Brigade volunteers

My dear friend Connie Smith who has volunteered with the Bucket Brigade passed on this letter to me:

Friends, I had a great picture and because I am so not tech, I accidentally deleted it…but imagine homes covered in mud, whole neighborhoods.  Covering yards, oozing through rooms, gardens and precious belongings, tragic, completely overwhelming.  Unimaginable.  And who will help you “dig out”?  Can you afford the resources?

Then see a crew of volunteers, shovels, gloves and masks, wheel barrows and a spirit to act.  They are shoveling your yard, sorting your home, clearing your garage.  All on a volunteer basis.  Boots on the ground, organized, delegated, allowing privacy for homeowners but hard at work.  Cleared through legal channels to be there and do what needs to be done.

But there may be a halt to the hundreds of volunteers doing this essential work because of lack of funds for the minimal support needed.  Everything helps, 20, 25, 30, or add zeroes…

Please go to santabarbarabucketbrigade.org   Please do what you can.  It is tax deductible.  And share.  I am reaching far and wide because this is so essential and neighbor to neighbor.

Last Saturday of digging was a spirit experience…hard work, shovel in hands and duct tape for blisters, but when a child’s bike was cleared?  And his dad said, “he will be so happy to see that.” Tears in my eyes.  They are there still.

Love Healing Resilience

Connie

Connie may not have been able to share a picture, but this is what many neighborhoods look like.  It is a daunting task that the Santa Barbara Bucket Brigade is tackling!

 

 

bringing in spring

It has been a rough winter in Santa Barbara.  From the Thomas Fire to the mudslides,  everything has been turned upside down.  We have not had rain since the slide and with warmer than normal temperatures, it certainly doesn’t feel like winter.  Although it is only the beginning of February, I was feeling the need for a bit of color and to lighten things up both aesthetically and emotionally. Continue reading