Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Northwest Flower & Garden Festival: Spectacular Show Gardens

I want to take a moment and show you a few of the standout show gardens at this year's Northwest Flower & Garden Festival. The show gardens are life size examples of how plants, walls, furniture and landscaping can transform a space. The theme of this year's show was "Gardens of the World."

This first garden (above) was "Notting Hill Modern English Garden" by Folia Horticultural and Design. It was a favorite of mine because I loved the layers of green on green on green. It's hard to see, but there is a fireplace-size curtain waterfall between the topiary trees that adds movement and a calm water element. Love!
This beautiful courtyard garden is "Under the Mediterranean Sun" by Washington Park Arboretum Foundation and designed by Phil Wood, Bob Lilly and Roger Williams. By hanging a spotlight, the team evoked the sun casting shadows through the grape vine draped portico. Bravo. Every element from the colored doors to the Bitter Orange tree bursting with fruit told the story of a hot and quiet afternoon a world away.
#nwfgs #seattleblogger #finddelight #mediterranean #gardendesign #landscapedesign #gardenshow #seattle

Monday, March 18, 2019

Living a Colorful Life: My iPhone Apps


My iPhone caused a stir at a party last night. The revelers were surprised and delighted that I organize my phone apps by color. Though I had heard about this practice somewhere online months ago, it was new to them and they loved it. In fact, they made me promise to share it in the blog today. Voila! 

When I try to explain my life and blog, I usually default to the phrase, "I am driven by color and sugar." That seems to sum it up. A good friend even thinks I should add the hashtag #colorsugarribbon to all of my online posts make "finding delight in everyday life" a clearer concept. I think she may be onto something.

Anyhoo, last night as I was paging past my apps to find something to share, a friend looked down and said, "Wait a minute...are your apps by color?!" Everyone responded well to it, though many conceded that they didn't thing they could change from their current folder system. 

I arranged my apps by color last summer and I will never go back. It's too pretty! FYI, I do have my most important apps on the first page for speed (Google Maps, Camera, Instagram, Calendar), but the rest are as you see them here. It might seem frivolous...but it also might bring you delight. 

#colorcoded #instagramable #apps #colorsugarribbon #finddelight #beautyofeverydaylife #color #makersgonnamake #seattleblogger #iphone #iphoneographer #pin #momentsofdelight #creativejuices #creativelife

Friday, March 15, 2019

Monsoon Restaurant in Seattle: Delightful and Delicious

We ordered too much and then somehow ate it all. That sums up our first visit to Monsoon on Capitol Hill, a restaurant that describes itself as serving Vietnamese Food with Pacific Northwest innovation. I am not very familiar with Vietnamese dishes, but Dan found this restaurant online and knew we'd like it. 

The menu was loaded with options, so we chose a variety of dishes to try for fun. My salad (above) was a refreshing and crunchy mix of shredded green papaya and herbs with caramelized shallots and shrimp. It was bright, tasty and healthy. 

We had this fun weekday night because Dan decided to drive into Seattle with me to have an early dinner before I went to my sorority alum book club. While I was discussing books, he was buying some at Elliott Bay Book Company. Win-win.
Okay, back to Monsoon. Everything was presented so beautifully, I took a picture as each dish arrived. My safety net was the chicken dumplings. I thought that if everything was too spicy, I could rely on the dumplings. Well, they were stars on their own. Each bite was tender and satisfying, while the dipping sauce was salty and complex. I would definitely order this again and again. They really filled me up, though and I had just tried the Grilled Lemongrass Beef skewers.
Wow. The flavor of the beef was sweet and spicy and the tender meat pulled easily off of the lemongrass skewers. This dish definitely scored high in my mind.
But surprisingly, my all time favorite was the Asian Eggplant with spicy coconut sauce. It was silky and tender and rich and divine. Oh Monsoon, you have taken over my taste buds and made sure that I'll be back. Thank you.

#seattleblogger #monsoonseattle #seattle #vietnamese #pnw #datenight #capitolhill #seattlerestaurants #illbeback

Friday, March 8, 2019

Hot Stove Society: Junior League of Seattle Cooking Class

It was a fun night to try some new recipes - the Junior League of Seattle Sustainers had arranged for the members to gather for some socializing and sauteing at Seattle restaurateur Tom Douglas' Hot Stove Society
We know how to cook, but this was a night where we could listen and practice a new technique. Maybe we would glean a new skill and perhaps we would reconnect with an old friend from our active membership years.
It was wonderful for me no matter because no matter how settled I get in Seattle, I still catch myself looking for my old friends in the crowd. We had a great night making Asian-inspired pot stickers, zucchini chive fritters, small spring rolls and the famous Tom Douglas mini coconut creme pies. Everything was delicious and we had a great time. Thank you, Junior League of Seattle Sustainers for connecting me to the incredible group of women.

#seattleblogger #tomdouglas #hotstovesociety #cookingclass #juniorleague 

Friday, March 1, 2019

Award Season: 2019 Northwest Flower & Garden Festival

In 2019, GardenComm (formerly Garden Writers of America) awarded its first Outdoor Living Award at the Northwest Flower & Garden Festival in Seattle. The winner was Nature Perfect Landscape for their garden display "Mystic Garden," a stylized Chinese garden with an intriguing moon gate entrance and impressive driftwood dragon by artist Jeffro Uitto"
I love how the forced perspective makes the white stone in the distance appear to be even farther away. I think it is meant to represent the city of Seattle.
I was honored to judge alongside fellow GardenComm members, television garden legend Ed Hume and Personal Garden Coach Christina Salwitz.

GardenComm decided that the Outdoor Living award would be looking for “a display garden that exhibited the most beautiful, creative and educational ideas to encourage effective use of horticulture and design for functional outdoor living environments.” The display gardens would be scored on "beauty, inviting design appealing to all the senses; creativity, unusual use of materials, such as up cycling; and ecological education, demonstrating earth friendly practices like green roofs, water retention and use of natives plants."
Congratulations, Nature Perfect Landscape on winning the first award from GardenComm!

#nwfgs #nwfgf #seattleblogger #gardencomm #awardseason2019