Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Happy Summer!

It's official, Summer has arrived.

I know you Southern gals start early , but here in NY, we are just getting started!

Bargains 570

The lilies are blooming...

Bargains 565

The roses smell heavenly...

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The dappled willow is ready for its summer haircut!

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The St. John's Wort is blooming profusely!

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The hydrangeas are just starting, and the rhodies are done and waiting to be pruned.

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Pretty in pink!

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Speaking of pink, these watermelon placemats were the inspiration for tonight's table.

They are vinyl backed, but feel like cloth.

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I know you are turning your monitor sideways to read the price!  Yes, one dollar, for 4!  CTS.  I grabbed 12 for The Tablescaper too!  I knew they would be gone in a flash.

I used a striped curtain panel that was marked down , also from CTS, so it was 1.60.

Dishes and green bee glasses from CTS.

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Fresh limes hold the name, see?  A place for YOU!

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It's hot today, so I stuck a Watermelon umbrella in the watermelon. CTS

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Little watermelon bowls and spreaders, CTS.

Napkins 50 cents at Savers.  Some pretty pink bird stirrers from my friend Pam. 

Flatware from Cost Plus.

A nice summery watermelon salad, feta and thinly sliced red onion with a splash of Balsamic.

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Served in the watermelon cap.  This was a small watermelon.

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I took the watermelon inside to use for the salad, so I replaced it with a watermelon candle I have had for years from my friend Diane.  I mean years!  I was just waiting for the right time!

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So happy summer!  You can sit up here  on the side porch and rock...Bargains 568

Or grab your towel and walk to the beach.

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And don't forget...

Always wear sunscreen!

Always Wear Sunscreen by Mary Schmich...NOT me!

Wear sunscreen.
If I could offer you only one tip for the future,sunscreen would be it.
The long-term benefits of sunscreen have been proved by scientists, whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable than my own meandering experience.
I will dispense this advice now.

Enjoy the power and beauty of your youth. Oh, never mind.
You will not understand the power and beauty of your youth until they've faded. But trust me, in 20 years, you'll look back at photos of yourself and recall in a way you can't grasp now how you really looked.
You are not as fat as you imagine.

Don't worry about the future. Or worry, but know that worrying is as effective as trying to solve an algebra equation by chewing bubble gum.
The real troubles in your life are apt to be things that never crossed your worried mind, the kind that blindside you at 4pm on some idle Tuesday.
Do one thing every day that scares you.


Don't be reckless with other people's hearts.
Don't put up with people who are reckless with yours.


Don't waste your time on jealously.
Sometimes you're ahead, sometimes you're behind.
The race is long and, in the end, it's only with yourself.

Remember compliments you receive.  Forget the insults.
If you succeed in doing this, tell me how.

Keep your old love letters.
Throw away your old bank statements.


Don't feel guilty if you don't know what you want to do with your life.
The most interesting people I know didn't know at 22 what they wanted to do with their lives.  Some of the most interesting 40-year-olds still don't.

Get plenty of calcium.

Be kind to your knees.  You'll miss them when they're gone.

Maybe you'll marry, maybe you won't. Maybe you'll have children, maybe you won't.  Maybe you'll divorce at 40, maybe you'll dance the funky chicken on your 75th wedding anniversary.

Whatever you do, don't congratulate yourself too much, or berate yourself either.  Your choices are half chance.  So are everybody else's.

Enjoy your body.  Use it every way you can. Don't be afraid of it or of what other people think of it.  It's the greatest instrument you'll ever own.

Dance, even if you have nowhere to do it but your living room.

Read the directions, even if you don't follow them.

Do not read beauty magazines.  They will only make you feel ugly.

Get to know your parents.  You never know when they'll be gone for good.  Be nice to your siblings. They're your best link to your past and the people most likely to stick with you in the future.

Understand that friends come and go, but with a precious few you should hold on. Work hard to bridge the gaps in geography and lifestyle, because the older you get, the more you need the people who knew you when you were young.

Live in New York City once, but leave before it makes you hard.  Live in Northern California once, but leave before it makes you soft.  Travel.

Accept certain inalienable truths.  Prices will rise.  Politicians will philander.  You, too, will get old. And when you do, you'll fantasize that when you were young, prices were reasonable, politicians were noble, and children respected their elders.

Respect your elders.

Don't expect anyone else to support you. Maybe you have a trust fund. Maybe you'll have a wealthy spouse.  but you never know when either one might run out.

Don't mess too much with your hair or by the time you're 40 it will look 85.

Be careful whose advice you buy, but be patient with those who supply it.  Advice is a form of nostalgia. Dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the disposal, wiping it off, painting over the ugly parts and recycling it for more than it's worth.

But trust me on the sunscreen.

I'm sure almost all of you have seen this by now...it was a speech given by Kurt Vonnegut at an MIT graduation.

Written by Mary Schmich

Happy Summer!

Linking with

Susan for Outdoor Wednesday

Susan for Tablescape Thursday

Gollum for Foodie Friday

Diann for Thrifty Friday

Beverly for Pink Saturday
Sheri at No Minimalist Here for the Block Party
Yvonne at Stone Gable for On the Menu Monday


  1. Happy summer to you too!

    May I say that I love, love, love your tablescape and that you got a great deal!

    Just loved it.

  2. Kathleen, this is such a cute table. I adore all those watermelon things. Believe it or not, I have that candle too, and a few others. And they are ancient! I've never burned them or used them for decor. They just sit in a box waiting. Guess I should pull together a watermelon table. ;-)
    Funny that I'd never heard of this salad before today, but they had it at the deli today. Small world. Looks good!
    Great post! ~ Sarah

  3. Can I just start with the first couple of items - a piece of watermelon and my towel so we can head on over to the beach?

    As Scarlett always said...I'll think about all those other things tomorrow.

  4. You never cease to amaze me and impress with your great settings and bargain purchases!!
    Love that speech!
    Happy Summer to you!

  5. You can't look at this tablescape and not smile. It is just so cheerful!

  6. Fun, fun table, Kathleen! The salad looks great, I'd like to try it, no one else in my house would though, so I''ll have to make it just for me.

  7. Oh, Kathleen, this is gorgeous and what a deal!! The watermellon plates are just, well, incredible, I'm in love!! This is so much fun and the place mats are terrific too, it really does it! You never seize to amaze me, Kath, such talent my dear. Come on over and visit my Victoria's b'day party, love to have you! Lots of hugs. FABBY

  8. The watermelon finery is just too wonderful, and I love the Kurt Vonnegut piece. Cherry Kay

  9. Queen of All Bargains strikes again! Love the watermelon theme.
    And the Kurt Vonnegut speech. The watermelon salad looks so good and refreshing. xo,

  10. Great summer table K! Love the fun colors and theme! Great speech, and here I thought you were getting all philosophical and deep on us! Happy Summer:@)

  11. First, I LOVE the Vonnegut speech. It was excellent.

    Second, I love (LOVE LOVE) that watermelon themed table from start to finish. Seriously, you had me with the first photo when I realized that it was made of place mats. I thought it was a table cloth pattern (which would have been just as nice).

    I am definitely trying your watermelon salad, too.
    In fact, if I have my luncheon club here this summer, I'm putting it on the menu. It looks so perfect.

    I just love coming here. I leave so inspired.

  12. Have a lovely summer..your watermelon theme is so cute..Gotta love those CTS:)

  13. Wonderful post, Kathleen. There is a lot of wisdom in those words. If I could walk to the beach I would think I lived in heaven.

  14. Kathleen:

    I think this may be my hands down favorite tablescape. As we discussed, it'a a watermelon set that is a bit different from the rest as it is shades of deep rose, and not red. Your table cloth works so well with the dishes. The entire creation looks, well, yummy. I really love it. You totally make me laugh at your umbrella stand.

    And...great poem. I had not seem it before. Lots of good advice in there.

    Love that table. Going back to look again. Maybe I can have lunch at that table this summer????

    - The Tablescaper

  15. Super cute placemats.. How great those would be all summer long. Your table looks fabulous! Love the watermelon salad too. And your sage advice.. so well put! many blessings, marlis

  16. I love your sweet table, and you know I love that watermelon salad! try it with a splash of olive oil and fresh basil too! yum! I love it both ways. And that is terrific advice. Wish I heard it when I was a bit younger, and hope that I would have been smart enough to listen to it!

  17. Although I don't eat melon of any ilk, this is one of the cutest table I have seen! I love the plates...the flatware is a perfect match, too.
    Your flowers are gorgeous. My hydrangeas are in full bloom and rather lush this year...must be all the rain we got this spring.

  18. I think this would be my very favorite! It surely speaks summer to me!

  19. And HAppy summer to you! We made it! Great post Kathleen with grat colours.

  20. I love your watermelon table setting! Summer is full of creativity and inspiration!

  21. Oh Kathleen, this is just the cutest table that I have ever seen, so full of whimsy. I cannot believe those placemats are for
    $1. I need a CTS near us! The watermelon looks so refreshing!...Christine

  22. Really cute table..love all the watermelon things.
    Cute post and now I am ready to head to the beach.

  23. Love that speech and never realized it was Kurt Vonnegut speaking. I used to hear in on the radio all the time. Truer words were never spoken.
    I guess I should use sunscreen more often:) but not today....raining here as I'm sure it must be there. But just think how much the hydrangea's are loving it.


  24. What a wonderfully fun table, my friend!!! I love the whole watermelon theme! I would never have contemplated the feta and the watermelon together. Yummers... Oh, and good advice, too.
    :-) Sue

  25. First of all dear Kathleen,
    I am SO SORRY for not following you . I honestly thought I had from the beginning! I just didn't know! HOw happy I am to remedy that.
    I love this post! So full of wisdom. YOu and I are probably the same age, it is nice to see how smart we get when we a little age on us! Great writings by Mary S. She must be our age too! Smart gal!

    YOur table is one of my favorites this season. Your attention to watermellon detail and summer fun makes this table over-the-top!
    One question~ did you set a place for me!
    xo Yvonne

  26. Kathleen -- I AM dieing about the placemats -- just so cute and could you send me the green bee glasses -- they look so fabulous with all the watermelony stuff -- what a stash you have here! Can you believe how cute the little watermelon spreaders are! Joni

  27. Forgot to mention that I love this poem and that I haven't really read it -- such good advice and I hope that I am dancing the funky chicken at my 75th birthday! I use a sunblock in my foundation -- hoping for the skin of my Aunt Ionia's that looked fabulous in her 89's -- I have her middle name so my fingers are crossed. Joni

  28. An explosion of pretty happening in your yard!

    Love the watermelon place mats and plates :) So perfect for summertime!

  29. Love all your pretty watermelons and your pearls of wisdom! Have a great summer!!!

  30. Oh my goodness, I absolutely adore your watermelon tablescape! Too fantastic for words.

  31. That is a gorgeous table. I love how the placemats fit together. Everything else coordinates so well. Wonderful table setting.

  32. Kathleen, that table is just waaaay cute! I love the way those place mats look on that striped fabric, and all of your watermelon accessories are perfect! I had not read that graduation speech. What a great speech! Your flowers look gorgeous. laurie

  33. Oh for heaven's sake! How fun is this, especially with the umbrella?! The prices that you picked them up for were criminal! Your watermelon salad looks delicous!

  34. Kathleen-I see neither your creativity nor your wit has faded in my absence!!! Love, love, love the watermelon theme. Those plates are great and the curtain panel is perfect with them. The salad sounds refreshing, but I still have not gotten a GOOD watermelon...a little early yet. Thanks for reminding me of the speech--so much truth in it. Got one son married and the baby is being stubborn about meeting us :)--any day now! I have missed you!

  35. What a great summer table!!! I love the way the placemats look as though they have had a little nibble taken out-my grandies would love this!!

  36. What a beautiful, colorful watermelon themed table! Love it!

    I'm curious about what that watermelon salad tastes like, unusual combination!

    No, I'm never heard that speech before. Neat.


  37. Kathleen, I so enjoy and look forward to your posts. Always there is something worthwhile from good ideas to words of wisdom. I am also very appreciative of your visits, particularly today's!

  38. Love, love the watermelon theme, and all of the advice, and your deals, oh my.

  39. Oh, I love watermelons/your table and also all of the flowers/greenery outside!!!! So summery and festive and perfect!@!!!!!
    You're such a sweetheart!


  40. This is such a cute table, Kathleen. I think I leave no stone unturned in my search for dishes, but I can't figure out what CTS means in posts that you and other bloggers leave. Can you enlighten me? I can't stand the thought that I'm missing something!
    Linda @ A Toile Tale

  41. the watermelon table is so fresh and cute, love your umbrella, what a great touch~

  42. Happy Summer, Kathleen!

    Wonderful table. Love those placemats.

    Enjoyed seeing all the photos.

  43. Love your watermelon - looks so summery and cool! Also love the speech~Jennifer

  44. This is such a CUTE table! I never saw these placemats at CTS! I would have snatched them up too. All the tableware is just so fun! Beautiful table Kathleen. TTF post will be up in a few hours.

  45. What a fun table!! You got alot of great deals on your items too! Sweet, sweet!!!

  46. Have a wonderful summer in NY! I wish I was there....but I am in Texas. I miss CTS! Your table screams summer. I love your watermelon dishes and placemats.
    Thank you for sharing.
    Blessings My Friend,

  47. I'm glad it's summer somewhere! It's taking it's time to arrive here. Cool and lots of rain!

    I picked a version of a watermelon salad for our gourmet group! It looks so good.

  48. Those are just fabulous placemats, but then you continued to add another layer and another layer of fabulosity! What a fun table. I especially love the watermelon umbrella tucked in the watermelon. That salad looks so great too. I have to admit that I was a latebloomer to becoming a watermelon love, but now I think it is just one of the most wonderful things about summer. I need to go and buy one. Fun, fun, fun!

  49. Kathleen, this is breathtaking. I think the link is working at FF. It's way down at the bottom of the post for some reason.

  50. I love this table!
    Watermelons always make me smile! They just say SUMMER! :0)

    I like the salad, candle and your lovely porch!

    That was a nice saying at the end of your post, except that I disagree with the author in that I don't think NYC has made me "hard" even though I've been here my entire life! I'm still a big softee ...lol!

    PS; The bread at Al i L was wonderful ....home made right out of the oven! We gobbled it up before I could take a hoto!

  51. Love, love the watermelon tablescape and all the cute plates and linens. So much fun! Happy Summer!

  52. What a great summer table!! All came together so well...so pretty!

  53. So beautiful! And that salad look yummy!

  54. Can I just tell you that I have stolen all of your ideas! LOL! I love so much of this, and where in NY are you? We're in Niagara Falls - and I'm still anxiously awaiting most of my summer blooms. I came by via Susan's party, but I missed it myself. I took pics of my pergola all dressed up this afternoon (with the 2 hour lull in the rain), and I REALLY hope you'll stop by and take a peak, and let me know what you think of the progress! :)

  55. I love your place Kathleen! I will go to the beach with you and look for celeb's that come to the Hamptons! And then go check out that fun and adorable table you set!
    Happy Weekend,

  56. Your table definitely puts me in the summer mood! The salad looks awesome. Your garden is looking beautiful. Glad you have some plenty of blooms this year.

  57. What a PERFECT summer time table! ♥♥♥ all the watermelon accessories & that salad looks very interesting. I've never had it but sure would like to try making it. I even have watermelon on hand at the moment, too.

    Thanks for sharing the poem...I had never heard it before. VERY true!!


  58. Happy summer to you too. Your garden is beautiful and so is that lovely table. I'll have to try your idea of the balsamic vinegar on the watermelon. Sounds fabulous. Happy Foodie Friday.

  59. Kathleen, I've scrolled up and down, several times, and every photo has made me smile, from the watermelon theme, to the lazy feeling evoked by a comfy, summer porch, down to the beach scene.

    Happy Summer to You!

  60. Oh how lovely this is Kathleen! The watermelon dishes and placemats are so colorful and so much fun! And that salad has to be wonderful Watermelon, feta, red onion and Balsamic - some of my favorite things! Heading to the Farmer's Market here tomorrow and getting a watermelon! Thanks so much for sharing your lovely tablescape and beautiful garden! As always your posts are such a joy to see!

  61. I thought the placemats were so cute. Then came the dishes! Wow. And the flatware goes so well with those dishes. I love it all.
    You made a super watermelon salad to top it off. Yum. It's all so great.
    Loved the little speech at the end too.

  62. How summery and refreshing looking.That salad looks delicious! You really got some great bargains here.

  63. Hi Kathleen, nice to meet you! thank you so much for stopping by to say hi and your sweet comments!

    Oh I love your pinks and what an awesome tablescape you have set, wowza!

    have a wonderful weekend!


  64. I love all of your watermelon goodies on your tablescape, Kathleen! And limes as place card holders...you are just too clever! I also love the advice! Sooo true! I look back at pics 20 years ago and I looked pretty darn good. But...will I really feel that way about how I look now in 20 years...yikes! I'm gonna look really bad! lol Happy weekend...hugs...Debbie

  65. Kathleen, I am sorry you had problems linking up. With over 1100links I am surprised Linky did not explode! Glad you were able to join the party and share this fabulous tablescape. All of the watermelon things are adorable. Thanks for passing on these words of wisdom.

  66. Kathleen, Thank you for joining me for ON THE MENU MONDAY! This is the perfect post. Full of party ideas and a great recipe to put on our menus!
    So happy you are here! Hope you will join OTMM next week!
    xo YVonne

  67. Hi Kathleen, I have heard of putting basalmic on watermelon but never tried it. I love it on tomatoes so I think I will give it a try! Such a clever umbrella holder! I'm sure no designers on HGTV ever thought of doing that! hehehe I love your watermelon theme. And I am extremely jealous of the beach. We are heading to Cape Cod in a few weeks but just for a few days. Kids can't get away now with summer jobs--sad, but true! Have a happy day! Linda

  68. Isn't it amazing how something simple like a set of placemats can give you such inspiration? Your table is amazing. So vibrant, fresh and summery. I love all of your little goodies and how clever you were with the lime place cards and the umbrella in the watermelon centerpiece. Wow. Love it all!

  69. I really am having a craving for....watermelon! I have not seen watermelon with the onion and It looks delicious! I can't wait to try it. Wish I would have as cute a setting as you have! Such fun!

  70. Gosh, it's been awhile since you posted. Hope all is well...

    Just so you know, I have a little music playing on my blog..just sayin', so you won't jump out of your skin like last time. :))


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