Hearts and Homes


On Saturday, March 15th, the 61st Annual Christ Church Tour of Homes will be held.  I enjoyed talking with Beth Smith and Lynn Nazzaro about this wonderful event that raises money for local charities to benefit women and children.  I thought it would be fun to feature just a few of the photos to whet your appetite and entice you to join the tour!  Grab a cup of coffee and enjoy the design and beauty of these amazing homes.

PicMonkey Collage Musgrove Plantation

We’ll begin with Musgrove Plantation.  Built in the 1930’s by Nancy Reynolds Bagley, the daughter of R.J. Reynolds, of tobacco fame.  This home is now used primarily for conferences.  This is the site where President Jimmy Carter assembled his first cabinet meeting, the first to ever have been held outside of Washington.

PicMonkey Collage Bruce Drive

This charming cottage on East Beach is endearingly called “Little Sandcastle” by it’s owners.   The feeling of whimsy created by designer Elizabeth Smith is so carefree!  Who wouldn’t love to call this jewel home?

PicMonkey Collage Kings Land

Next on my list is a lovely home that sits on the edge of the Sea Island Plantation Golf Club.  I love the kitchen and the open concept of this fabulous home.

PicMonkey Collage 53rd Street

On Sea Island you’ll have a great treat when you visit this beautifully designed home.  The landscaping is so in keeping with the style of this lovely property.  I’m looking forward to stepping through that front door!

PicMonkey Collage 24th Street

And finally, another Sea Island home Lynn and Beth so kindly shared with me.  Designed by Jim Sutton and decorated by Elizabeth Smith the French decor of the interior provides a feeling of opulent comfort.

christ church lg

This is just a taste of a few of the homes you’ll see when you join the tour.  You can purchase $40.00 tickets in advance here:  http://christchurchtourofhomes.org/, as well as at many local businesses.  Tickets at the door are $45.00.  The tour will take place in two hour shifts denoted by the color of the wrist band you’ll receive.  One thing you won’t want to miss is something new to the tour this year.  Lynn and Beth have a real treat for you when you tour the famous cemetery located on the grounds of the church itself.  People who formed this island and are part of its history will be represented by various members of the community in full costume, sharing their stories for all to hear.


It takes an active team of volunteers to create this wonderful event each year.  Pictured here are members of the various committees who work together to coordinate, organize and provide a truly enjoyable experience.  Listen to The Permanent Tourist radio talk show this coming Tuesday and Thursday evenings at 7:05 p.m. on WWEZ 94.7 and 97.5 fm to hear more about the event from Beth and Lynn.  You won’t want to miss this tour if you live in or around St. Simons Island!

Simple Sundays

One week from tomorrow we’ll be seeing a bit of the green as we celebrate St. Patrick’s Day!  I love beautiful Celtic music and stumbled over this recording from Scotland. It’s a bit haunting and bittersweet, but so beautiful.  I’m sharing it today for you to listen, relax and enjoy.  I’ll be making a special meal for dear friends later today so a morning of relaxation is important!  What will you do to enjoy the day and share the magic of a peaceful Sunday?  Whatever it is, I wish you joy!


On The Radio

Enjoy a lively conversation between me and Tony Baker, David Dickerson, Bob Allison and Bob Drury.  We’re discussing the dynamic book this team put together for all of us to treasure!


Finally Friday

Since winter seems to be leaving with great hesitation just now…I’m sharing one of my favorite comfort food recipes.  This is a great way to use rotisserie chicken if you’re in a hurry and don’t want to use boneless chicken breast as called for.  It’s simple, delicious and always a family pleaser.  You’ll find this recipe in my cookbook, “Spice Up Your Life” available as an eBook on Amazon.com.  This is comfort food at its best, pair it with a nice spinach salad or your favorite mixed greens.  I hope you’ll enjoy this deep dish chicken pie!


Deep Dish Chicken Pie

Preheat oven to 350° F

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cooked and cubed
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 Idaho potato, skin on, cubed
1 cup sliced, raw, organic carrots
1 cup sweet organic peas, frozen or fresh (in season)
½ white, sweet onion diced
2 cups vegetable or chicken broth
¼ cup cornstarch, dissolved in ¾ cup cold water
1 tsp. Sangre de Cristo Poultry Seasoning
1 tsp. Sangre de Cristo Sea Salt
½ tsp. Sangre de Cristo White Pepper
1 tsp. Sangre de Cristo Thyme
1 tsp. Sangre de CristoParsley
Heat olive oil in a large sauté pan. Add the potatoes,
carrots and onions, cooking until slightly tender. Add the
peas and chicken. Place mixture in a deep baking dish
that has been sprayed with cooking spray.
In a saucepan, heat the broth to a simmer, whisk the
cornstarch/water mixture into a gravy, add more water if
needed. Pour this mixture over the veggies and mix.
Prepare the biscuits as listed below, spoon the biscuit
mixture over the top and bake for 40 – 50 minutes until
bubbling and the biscuits are a light golden brown. Serves
6 – 8.

Buttermilk Biscuit Topping

2 cups unbleached flour
3 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. Sangre de Cristo Sea Salt
6 tbsp. unsalted butter
2/3 cup buttermilk
CAM00231 (1)



Painting With Mr. Albert

albert fendig

The experience of sitting with Albert Fendig, listening to his stories and memories is something I will never, ever forget.  Born and raised here on St. Simons, this Southern gentleman is filled to the brim with the history of our area.  An attorney and an artist, Albert shared his beautiful paintings as well as his family history as we enjoyed a lovely Spring afternoon.


He is passionate about saving and sharing that history, especially that of the Hofwyl-Broadfield Planatation.  Albert’s stories of Miriam and Ophelia Dent and their mission to save the plantation by turning it into a dairy after the rice industry fell following the Civil War and the end of slave labor filled my mind with images of a bygone time.  His position as trustee of the plantation is one he takes to heart, everyday he works to keep this valuable piece of local history thriving and growing.


On Saturday, March 15, from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., the second annual “Albert’s Plein Air Affaire” will be held on the grounds of this gracious property.  Artists from all around the area and beyond will come together to paint with Albert Fendig.  Easel’s will be placed here and there as this year’s talented group come together to share the history, putting it into place on canvas and paper.

hofwyl grounds

This event is open to the public for a minimal fee.  Join the artist’s as you stroll across the vast lawn and breathe in the history.  Take a tour of the plantation house and imagine what life was like in the day.


Painting by Albert Fendig

Albert’s Plein Air Affaire is an event you don’t want to miss!  I’ll be featuring more stories on the Hofwyl-Broadfield Plantation in future posts!  I’ll share the history, the struggles and maybe a ghost story or two as I discover more.

Lady in Red

winter 2

Winter is making its final appearance here on St. Simons Island.  At least I hope we’re getting to the end of what has been a colder than usual season.

lady in red 2

My gardening plans have me gazing at photos on-line, dreaming of what to plant where, what will go with what…annuals versus perennials….evergreen versus flowering shrubs.

lady in red 3 lg.

I stumbled across these divine Lady In Red hydrangeas that are now making it to the top of my list!

lady in red 1 lg.

Aren’t they stunning?  The deep red of the blossoms almost look like velvet!

white cottage roses 1 lg.

And then we have white cottage roses…..oh, how I love these!

fence with cottage roses

I’m dreaming of putting a fence along our front lawn with these growing all along the street side.

country garden lg

Warmer weather is on its way this weekend and work will begin.  I hope to have a garden that looks something like this when all is said and done.  If you have any tips on flowering plants you love that grow well here, please share!

Wake Up!

wake up coffee logo

There is a quaint little coffee shop located at the end of Redfern Village here on St. Simons Island.  It’s not part of a major chain, but it’s a place where you’ll find people from all over the area going to meet, plug in to work on-line and also to enjoy a great cup of coffee, tea or chai.  Wake Up Coffee is the name of this establishment and it’s won me over!


I met with Bo Mann, owner, to discuss his mission to work with third world countries, buying coffee beans that he then roasts on site to brew one of the best cups of “Joe” around.

wake up coffee cup

The business has been going strong for five years now with a second location coming in Brunswick on Community Road.  Bo also shared news of his first franchise in Auburn, Alabama.  This is a young man who is going places!

PicMonkey Collage Wake Up Coffee

In the front of the store you’ll find all sorts of fair trade items for gift giving or as a treat for yourself.


There is a message behind all of this, a message of world issues, social consciousness and global ethics.  Bo works with farmers in Guatemala, Costa Rico, and Africa to get the very best coffee beans they have to export.  He’s currently working to import coffee from growers in Haiti as well.

wake up coffee mug

You can buy coffee by the pound for home brewing as well.  Bo’s vision is working.   His very presence reflects his belief in what he’s doing with the business.  Wake Up Coffee brings the community together.   Lively conversation is shared, business deals are made and the world keeps spinning toward a greater understanding of how we truly are all in this together!  To read more about Wake Up Coffee or to order on-line click here:  www.wakeupcoffeeco.com.


Wake Up Coffee – 256 Redfern Village – Saint Simons Island, Georgia 31522  – 912- 268-2429

Pieces of History

civil war 1

We live in an area rich with history.  From the first colonists who settled here in 1732, to the Civil War era, this history relied on written word and the hands of an artist to preserve and portray events that shaped our world today.  The Mildred Huie Museum will be sharing a fascinating event on Saturday, March 8th at which historic portraits and objects that tell the story of the Civil War period will be available for you to see, touch and learn about.

Pen and ink drawing of Confederate soldier

Curator, Dayna Caldwell, has devoted months of planning to present this show at which visitors can actually hold artifiacts from the Callicut Collection.  Dayna will discuss the exhibition’s portraiture during a Curator Talk at 2:00 p.m. at the Museum.

Dageurreotype of Union soldier with painted Union flag and Western Plains environ drawings

Following this attendee’s will have the opportunity to hear Dr. Callicutt discuss his collection of Civil War objects.  This twenty year old collection is full of pieces of history that, when touched, enable one to sense a connection with the soldiers who once held them in their own hands.

Crude Drawing of Confederate soldier

Most of the artwork and photographs were produced following the end of the war from the 1860’s – 70’s.  Much of this work served to provide civilians with news from the battlefront while others used them to make profit.

Painting of Union Officer

Painting of Union Officer

This event promises to be a powerful experience for anyone who collects Civil War memorabilia or has special interest in this important part of American history.  In the words of Dr. Callicutt, “Art has the ability to tell us powerful stories of the time and place in which it was created.  Those stories and experiences teach us of the past, thereby, informing our future.  Thus, art is a profound learning tool that also has the capability to move us, sometimes more than printed words alone can.”.

mildred huie museum photo lg

Admission for this event is $7.00 per person and includes access all other exhibits at the museum.  The Mildred Huie Museum provides a connection with Coastal Georgia history in a way that enables visitors to experience a bygone era that now lives on.

The Mildred Huie Museum – 1819 Frederica Road – St. Simons Island, GA 31522

Simple Sundays

I’m featuring a beautiful symphony by Joseph Haydn this morning.  Mr. Haydn has been referred to as the “Father of the Symphony” by musical historians.  His works are lively and perfect for beginning a Sunday.  I’ll be planning what to plant in my vegetable garden as well as which flowers go and which stay as Spring begins to makes its appearance here on the island.  Warm croissants with lemon curd and a mug of steaming hot coffee are by my side as well as my trusty planning notebook.  I love Sunday’s, dinner with family, time together and time to reflect as I begin my day.  Enjoy!

On The Radio

Listen in on the fun discussion I had with The Chef and The Wine Guy, Tom Delaney and Mark Gagliano and our special guest, Ryan Mcloughlin, sommelier at the famous Sea Island Cloister Hotel.  We discussed so many interesting subjects from wine to how one becomes a sommelier or chef.  It was a great time that I love being able to share with all of you!