Summer Travel Plans

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My first summer trip is around the corner! I am heading up to Charleston for a trunk show with my friend Grimsley.  I haven’t been to Charleston in ages so I am so excited to visit there.  My first pit stop will be at my parent’s on Amelia Island, it’s a perfect 6 hours from Miami. Leaving on July 11th, my show will be on the 12th.  

This invitation might be one of my favorites ever in the history of my business. I LOVE Dixie Designs and think their designs are fresh and adorable.  This invitation would get me out of the house showing up to a trunk show, right?
Next stop-visiting Meg at her parent’s house in North Carolina.  Always a fun time there. I haven’t seen them in a month-which seems like forever.
After that-heading to Atlanta to hit one of the last days of the Atlanta Gift Show.  I should be able to do this on Sunday and hit the road to head to my parents house but not sure about this part of my plan.  My goal is to be back in the office by Tuesday.
The next trip is up North!  I leave at the end of July for my week on Nantucket with my old Newport roommates.  So excited to get up there. I have a couple of days in Boston before and a couple in Providence on the way back.  Tuesday, August 8th I will be in Newport so I can keep my blog honest and check out all my favorite Newport spots. 
Amidst all this planning, I still do not have a nailed down kitchen plan!!  The guys I want to do my kitchen are super busy and have postponed my meeting several times.  I am supposed to meet with them tomorrow so hopefully, that will work out.  If I get the plans for the cabinets nailed down this week, it still realistically means there won’t be any action until September with the way things move around here.  So much for “Kitchen Summer” which was what I was calling it. I have bought my faucet and am about to buy my sink, so that is something.
My closet…oh my goodness I had so much stuff in that closet.  Seriously, I found things I haven’t seen in years.  I packed it all up using all my Pierre Deux duffle bags and various totes that were in there I put them in my living room.  I was doing ok putting things away in the new closet when I looked for something yesterday and found two duffle bags that went unnoticed so now I have to find more room in there. Please don’t email and tell me to purge, I have been purging but there are just some things that I can’t get rid of!  I have a 4 day weekend coming up this week and it will all be spent working on my apartment putting things away and clearing things out.  
No solid plans for the 4th of July yet…I used to LOVE that holiday. Every year I would buy a new outfit to go watch fireworks.  Now, it is so unbelievably hot in Miami, I usually am trying to find something to wear so I don’t melt. But that is a whole other post.
If you are in Charleston or have friends in Charleston that might want to come to my show, please reach out to me at for the address. It will be fun!
Thanks friends!
Xo, Kristin

Road Trip

Last pickup time was 7:00 AM on Thursday.  So scared I would oversleep, I woke up at 5 and ended up reading my book on my iPad until it was time to get moving.  We breezed out of Miami and headed up to Amelia Island.  My parents were out of town but we were spending the night there on the way to North Carolina.  I was snapping pictures along the way of my two little friends.  It has been a while since I had been on a trip with little ones in the car.  You really need two people, one to drive and the other to keep them entertained and happy (and to pick up falling objects from car seats).  

Ashley was cracking us up the whole way…

 We got to my parents in the afternoon and hung out.  

The girls got to meet my sweet Millie…

Friday morning, we loaded up again and headed North.  We were making such good time and right before we hit North Carolina, we stopped at a fabric store.  The girls were so happy to get out of the car…Elizabeth found a little play house to sit in while we shopped.  

We got to Statesville Friday evening and had a big, fun dinner.  The next day, we went to check out the new chickens and the girls went horesback riding.  It is so fun to be at the farm and see how it all works.
Holt was showing the girls all the chickens…

Uncle Robb taking the girls through the “secret passage”
 while Elizabeth and Chase were very busy in the kitchen…
Saturday, we went out with Heather and Ashley for a super fun girls dinner. 
Sunday, we went to a big lunch and hung out the rest of the time…

I was so sad to get on my plane Monday morning back to reality.  Definitely one of the more fun road trips I have been on in a long time!

Black Friday Resort Style

Being on Amelia Island for Thanksgiving is so much fun…but doesn’t leave too many options for Black Friday shopping. My blackberry was about to blow up with emails from Old Navy and the Gap. The closest Old Navy is 20 miles away. I begged my Mom to take me there, knowing that it could be a complete zoo. We got there and unbelievably, it was one of those times where I didn’t see anything I had to have. Feeling horrible for wasting gas, I picked out some $5 leggings and a $7 long sleeve t-shirt. We also popped into Michael’s. I haven’t been there in a long time and could not get over how much jewelry making materials they have there! No wonder everyone in the world makes jewelry these days!
The only other place I wanted to hit was my beloved Plantation Shop. I get the pictures on Facebook with all of their furniture shipments and one piece is prettier than the next. This trip did not disappoint.

I am in LOVE with this piece…there were tons of amazing pine pieces.

Cute pillows on this nice bench

It is so pretty there..with tons of different types of displays…

This gorgeous piece had a SOLD sign on it

These lamps are on my official wish list!

Lots of books..

Tons of candles…

and holiday displays all around..

All the ornaments are 50% off
Check out The Plantation Shop on Facebook
4828 First Coast Highway
Palmetto Walk Shopping Village
Amelia Island, Florida 32034

Up the Coast…

Today, I am driving from Dade to Nassau..straight up the coast of Florida..with a little stop in Palm Beach. My car is full of laundry and beads, a dangerous combination. Can’t wait to see the fam and my little Millie. I haven’t seen her since Christmas-the longest stretch without her yet. I stopped by Fresh Market on my way to work to get some nuts and it was nuts in there! The lines were crazy. I am happy to get out of Miami for a few days and enjoy some cooler weather. Stay tuned for great deals this weekend!

Christmas on Amelia Island

I packed up all my stuff and headed up to my parents house yesterday. It was wierd to leave Miami for Christmas for the first time since I was a child. Hopefully, all my customers planned ahead, because this Christmas Eve meet ups for last minute gifts!!! Last year, I was at the CVS parking lot at 6pm with one of my guy friends buying for his wife!

My Mom was excited to have Christmas at their new house for the first time so everyone is on the way! She has so many decorations around..many from my childhood

this has been around for as long as I remember..

pink flamingo trees

our tree has memorial ornaments for our family pets no longer with us..

Hooked wool angels that my Mom makes..

My one request for the holidays is my Mom’s Italian Cream Cake…she just finished it and our house smells unbelievable. This is the moistest, delicious cake.

Italian Cream Cake

1/2 cup butter

1/2 cup soft shortening

2 cups sugar

5 eggs, separated

1 cup buttermilk

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 cups flour

1 can (3 1/2 oz.) flaked coconut

1 cup chopped nuts

Have ingredients at room temperature. Cream together butter, shortening, and sugar until light and fluffy, add egg yolks and beat well. Combine buttermilk, soda and vanilla. To the creamed mixture, add milk and flour alternatively, beating well after each addition. Add coconut and nuts.

Beat egg whites until stuff but not dry and fold into batter. Divide among 3 greased and floured 9 inch layer cake pans. Bake in 350 degree oven 30 minutes or until done (when toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 min. remove and complete cooling on cake rack. Frost cake with thin layer of frosting between each layer of cake.

Cream Cheese Icing

1 package (8 oz.) cream cheese

1/4 cups (1/2 stick) butter

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1 pkg. (1lb) confectioners sugar 4x

Have ingredients at room temperature. Combine cream cheese and butter and beat until smooth and fluffy. Beat in vanilla and sugar until thick and creamy. Makes enough to fill and frost 3 layer Italian Cream Cake. p.s. she added a touch of red food coloring to the frosting this time

Yum! I can’t wait to eat this for dessert. So excited that it is Christmas Eve today! Wishing all my blogging friends the Merriest Christmas and Happiest Holidays!! xo

this is what the cake looks like inside.

Mission Accomplished!

I flew up to Amelia Island today to surprise my Mom for Mother’s Day!! My Dad picked me up and we got home..I walked in and she was watching Oprah and I just said “surprise!” She certainly was. So worth the effort!!!

My travel was another story. I had so many frustrating things occur on my way here and I kept grabbing my blackberry to tweet and then had to stop myself in case my Mom checked my blog! Travel these days just does not seem fun at the airports.

Anyway…wishing all my blogging friends the happiest of Mother’s Day weekends!!!

Statesville to Amelia to Miami

So, after arriving one minute past my deadline in Statesville, I was greeted by Meg and little Ashley on the porch. She had gotten bigger and blonder in the month since I blew through town on my way up North.

I am going to have to travel up to North Carolina to see them since they just moved up there! So much change going on… I caught up with them, got a tour of her parents addition and got to sleep in the air conditioned guest room, so nice after sleeping with a fan for 3 1/2 weeks.

We got up and by the time I packed up, we were off to lunch with Kelly, Pam and some little ones. On my way out of town, we stopped by to check out the house Meg and Brett now have a contract on. So great and super exciting but I will miss them terribly. I think I might be up there a bunch. Watch out!

I was on the road by 1:15pm and drove the very boring drive to my parents house and arrived right at 6pm. They had our friends over for dinner and we had fun catching up. They just put grass down the week before I got looked great. Poor Millie was tired but perked up when I arrived. I missed her!

Back in the car the next morning for the last leg of my trip. My only highlight was finding Chick-Fil-A in the West Palm Beach area. I really don’t understand why they have only one location in Miami-in a mall! The waffle fries are to die for. Got back to Miami around 1:15pm and headed straight to work. Not to exciting but how great to walk into my apartment later that night and see the hard work I did before I left. It is almost ready for a photo shoot, I still have a few things left to do.
Back in Miami-I can’t believe it!

Touring the Island

My parents moved to Amelia Island about a year ago. The island is just north of Jacksonville and boasts 13 beautiful miles of beautiful beaches. Separating it from every other beach town, it’s history is unique and fascinating, being the only community in the United States to have experienced life under eight different flags. Amelia Island and its charming seaport village of Fernandina Beach are largely characterized by its colorful and sometimes turbulent past. With its cast of pirates, Timucuans, shrimpers, nobles and confederates, the island’s rich 4,000 year history is full of tales and treasures that live on today.

Originally inhabited by the Timucuans (as early as 2,500 B.C), the French rose what would be the first of eight flags over Amelia Island on May 3, 1562. This began a chapter of the island’s history that has been described as “the French visited, the Spanish developed, the English named, and the Americans tamed.”

Amelia’s maritime heritage is due in large part to the natural deep harbor on the north end of the island, which provided easy access for smugglers, pirates, and assorted sea captains. The waters surrounding Amelia Island today attract a wide variety of recreational and commercial activity. The island’s city center, Fernandina Beach, was once a charming seaport village, and in the early 20th century became known as the birthplace of the modern shrimping industry. Now visitors can enjoy waterfront dining as they watch shrimp boats dock. Once a year, the island hosts the Isle of Eight Flags Shrimp Festival to celebrate the industry with live music, arts and crafts, and boatloads of fresh shrimp and seafood.

Today Fernandina Beach is still characterized by Victorian-era architecture and a remarkable historic district. The district is home to Northeast Florida’s oldest continuously operating bar, the Palace Saloon, and Florida’s oldest operating hotel, the Florida House Inn, both located in a 50-block area of homes and buildings listed on the National Register of Historic Places. On the north end of the island, visitors can explore Old Town, the last Spanish Town in the Western Hemisphere in 1811. Old town was the original encampment of the Timucuans and at one time featured the Spanish Fort San Carlos. In 2011, Old Town will celebrate its 200 year anniversary.

Right across the Amelia River is Cumberland Island, where you-know-who got married (JFK Jr. and Carolyn Bessette). I am planning on visiting there on my next visit since it takes the whole day. There are no roads there and you have to bring your own snacks.

Downtown hosts a farmers market every Saturday with many local farmers selling fresh fruit and vegetables and gourmet baked goods and delights.

The Island is a great place for family visits with a great variety of housing options from an amazing Ritz Carlton, Amelia Island Plantation, lots of local hotels and motels and charming bed and breakfastes, many right on the beach.
Visit for more information.

Rain, Rain Go Away

I packed my bathing suit and sunscreen for my trip and it looks like they are going to stay in my bag. It is so rainy and the sun is completely hidden, so my Mom and I went shopping. We went to the Plantation Shop, which is chock full of beautiful furniture and accesories. One room had the most beautiful blue and white chinese pottery pieces and lamps. All the prices are super reasonable.

Right on the bottom floor was the perfect piece of furniture that I have been searching for. I have an antique pine dresser in my living room that has my tv on it. I need a piece that can hold my television and dvds and such. It was on sale, so I put it on hold and am buying it next week.

I am also in love with this piece. It is so beautiful and would be a perfect bedside table. I need to sell a few more necklaces to buy this one!

If you are in this area, I highly recommend a visit to this lovely store. The Plantation Shop, 6800 First Coast Highway on Amelia Island 904-261-2030.

Off to Amelia Island..

Back to the airport again for a quick flight to Amelia Island for Memorial Day weekend to visit my parents. I decided to keep my blood pressure low and check my new bag that caused so many problems last weekend. I got to the airport on time and was so annoyed that they are now charging $15 for the first bag! Holy cow. I DO not understand how they think this will do anything but cause more airport problems. People don’t want to (or can’t) pay the extra fees so they are all trying to bring their bags on board…there is not enought overhead room to accomodate all these bags, what a nightmare! Then I thought, how stupid to pay the money for my bag, I should just try to get in on the plane and then if they want to rip it from my grip like they did at LGA on Monday, I won’t have to pay the fee!

Anyway, when I landed and got into the terminal, I could not believe how many cute guys there were walking around. There might be a better chance of me meeting my future husband in this airport than going out in Miami. I am not kidding!

My Mom picked me up and and took me to lunch at T-Rays, this adorable local restaurant in an old gas station, delicious breakfast and burgers and then to see the new house. They are hoping to move in June, it really went up fast. I got to see my Dad and then home to see Millie. She was so cute and as happy to see me as I was her.

After the Stationery Show, I was thinking some of the things I bought might be on the way sooner rather than later, and I was right! I got a shipment notice from Lifeguard Press, the distributors of Lilly Pulitzer paper. I ordered the green stand up book with personalized notes, labels and calling cards. I am so excited to get my hands on it.

I read online that Mrs. John L. Strong is closing! That makes me so sad, but in this economy, I am sure their business was S-L-O-W! Feeling very lucky, my business is booming these days! I got an order for 54 crystal necklaces last week and am making them right now. The Bethenny necklaces are selling great as well. They really are so pretty and perfect to spice up any summer outfit.

Last, but not least, thank you so much for DMLD for bestowing an award on my blog. I feel very honored that so many people click onto Summer in Newport and actually read what I have to say! It is so fun! xoxo