From Farm to Table with Friends

Posted by Pamela on March 18, 2013
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Once a month a few of our friends get together with Sid and I for a dinner club. We decided to make only in season food grown locally grown farm to table fresh. We rotate between types of protein every time. This month strawberries, snapper and carrots were the Florida fresh options to be creative with. We researched until we decided to use the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services website to not only find our food choices but recipes as well. This website is a fantastic resource for planning fresh healthy meals at home for friends and family. We have a great time preparing, laughing and spending time with neighborhood pals while enjoying a delicious meal together. The latest soiree was a smash!




















{We found our recipe for the Fresh from Florida blog this time. You can find it here. }







































Live Beautifully. Dream Passionately. LOVE Completely.



Ivanhoe Village Orlando- A local artist’s way

Posted by Pamela on February 12, 2013
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The webster’s dictionary definition of “Gem” says this:
1 a : jewel b : a precious or sometimes semiprecious stone cut and polished for ornament 2 a : something prized especially for great beauty or perfection b : a highly prized or well-beloved person
I’ve always perceived gems as beautiful gifts that are hard to find but once I find one I hold on to it. It’s something that strikes me as soon as I see it.  The minute I found my gem in the rough, located in Ivanhoe Village I knew I couldn’t let it slip through my fingers. The sweet little bungalow built in 1944 that displays more character then Charlie Chaplin is one of many gems found here. Ivanhoe Village has been historically known for its antique district, however locally known more appropriately as “Ivanhood“!
Ivanhood” is becoming the art Mecca of Orlando. From museums such as The Mennello Museum, The Orlando Museum of Art, theatres such as Orlando Repertory Theatre, Theatre Downtown to our newest theatre addition The Venue.  Art studios, antiques, artists and an abundance of little gems mingled together make this area a metropolis of creativity. “Ivanhood” is finally blooming from an “up and coming” neighborhood to the the new “90210″ of art in Orlando. As an artist myself I love being in the center of great inspiration. One book in particular that stands out, which I’ve read several times is, “The Artist Way” by Julia Cameron. A fantastic little gem presented to me for the first time was when I was studying at Rollins College. Those who’ve read it know exactly what I mean. If you’re looking for a creativity jump-start I highly recommend it.
While hanging out at Ivanhood‘s local watering hole The Hideaway bar, I ran into another lovely gem, Andrew Spear. If you haven’t heard of Andrew yet well, let’s just say he fits well into “Ivanhood” because he’s the new “90210″ incarnate. An extremely talented artist that was just recently asked to work with the besties boys, the Orlando Arena and many other amazing projects. Andrew is moving fast and there’s no stopping now! His portfolio is becoming quite extensive check him out at While talking to him that night at The Hideaway, he divulged some great inspiration.  One being he’s read Julia’s gem of a book which, we both agreed is a fantastic read to help aspiring artist’s take the next step to creativity. Second is his way of setting himself a part from the plethora of talented artists in our area. It’s not an easy feat to make the step to making art a full time job. It takes ingenuity. Andrew has ingenuity and it’s bursting at the seams! He’s put a lot of work into self promotion by using social media as his platform. With his gift of art along with humor and a strike of social media ingenuity BAM! you have Andrew Spear. No longer a gem in the rough, a diamond in Ivanhoe Village. Check out his latest mural for the Mills 50 district below.
Live Beautifully. Dream Passionately. Love Completely.

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L’amour du jour

Posted by Pamela on February 09, 2013
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Happy Saturday! The weekend is here and I finally have time to relax. Here are a few of the things that have inspired me this week amid the heavy workload and wedding planning. Which, by the way is moving nicely. We have all of our vendors in place and are now working on details. I think I see a spa day in the near future! Have a fabulous weekend.



{Spring is just around the corner and my orchid I bought a year ago at Exotic Bonsai Gardens on Mills Ave has started to bloom.}

{One of my favorite style books by Lauren Conrad. I love her style. Buy her fabulous book here.}

{Heart accent pillows (old) for valentines day coming up. Michael’s has cute conversation pillows here.}

{Residents of Orlando think green! The city replaced the old small bins with carryall carts to make recycling even easier.}

{These are one of the many species of succulents I have growing around my house. All of the plants I have, are ones that grow well in my area. You can check out your specific area at}


Live Beautifully. Dream Passionately. Love Completely.

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Stars in our Heart- Minestrone Soup

Posted by Pamela on January 30, 2013
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My addiction to Pinterest lately has been inspiring a multitude of creativity in my life. It’s been extremely helpful with creating a vision for our upcoming wedding, I haven’t even had to buy one bridal magazine! Sid’s even been inspired to write our own cookbook and here’s a preview of one of the healthy recipes we’re going to include. I used a few different recipes and cute Pinterest ideas to make this delicious healthy winter soup.



Stars in our Heart- Tuscany Vegetable Minestrone Soup










{Cut a tiny indent in the top of a peeled carrot and then slice the sides in a V shape. Shown here.}










{Dice the squash and zucchini, slice the mushrooms}










{Add chopped onion and celery to heart-shaped carrots, trim green beans}

{Pastina makes cute little star shape pasta}

{Stars in our Heart soup, good for the soul.}

Here’s the recipe:

  • 2 whole Zucchini, Halved, Cut Into Strips, Then Cubed
  • 2 whole Summer Squash, Halved, Cut Into Strips, Then Cubed
  • 8 ounces, weight White Mushrooms, Stems Removed And Quartered
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • Kosher Salt To Taste
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 1/2 tbl sage
  • 2 Tablespoons (additional) Olive Oil
  • 2 whole Carrots, Washed And Sliced (not Peeled)
  • 1 whole Medium Onion, Diced
  • 3 stalks Celery, Sliced (leaves Included)
  • 8 cups Low Sodium Vegetable Broth
  • 2 cans Cannelini Beans, Rinsed
  • 1 cup (heaping) Cut Green Beans, Fresh Or Frozen
  • 1-1/2 cup Pastini
  • 1 can (14.5) Diced Tomatoes With Juice
  • 2 cups baby spinach
  • Salt And Pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 500 degrees.

Toss cubed zucchini, squash, and mushrooms in a bowl with olive oil and a sprinkling of kosher salt. Arrange onto two sheet pans (to avoid crowding) and roast in the hot oven for 5 to 10 minutes, or until brown and black parts begin to show. Remove from oven and set aside.

In a heavy pot, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add carrots, onions, celery and spices and stir to cook for 3 minutes. Pour in broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for ten minutes.

Add cannelini beans and green beans. Cook on low for five minutes. Add pasta and cook for an additional five minutes. Add canned tomatoes, stir, and cook for an additional five minutes on low heat. Check for seasonings, adding salt, pepper.

Add roasted vegetables and spinach at the very end. Stir and allow to simmer and heat for a few minutes before serving. Be sure to check seasoning! Add more broth if necessary to increase liquid amount.

Enjoy this fantastic soup made with love!

Live Beautifully. Dream Passionately. Love Completely.