Author Archives: charlesprogers
Post by Alison Hein
Facebook. That’s how I got reacquainted with my good friend Danny. We live miles apart and haven’t seen each other for years. In my mind, Danny is still that tall, gangly teenager with the easy smile and friendly style. Except that he’s not. Well, I’m pretty sure he’s still friendly, and I hope that he smiles often, but he’s certainly not gangly anymore.
Dan recently messaged me: “In 2012, a health coach friend helped me take control of my dietary habits, and now I feel better than I have in years. So, I am starting 2013 with a new commitment to help others make more healthful decisions about food and exercise.”
After a further exchange of messages, Dan shared the following: “For two decades, I worked first in retail, then in radio. Then, an awful thing happened – I got my first desk job. I sat, and sat, and sat some more. I also gained, and gained, and gained until I was 75 pounds overweight.”
Dan is committed to his weight loss journey, and has lost 25 pounds so far. It’s enough to allow him to walk a mile or two without losing his breath, and enough that his self-esteem has returned from exile.
You go, Danny! Kudos for your hard work and commitment to helping others! Here’s a light and healthy Egg White Omelet named in your honor. Fresh vegetables and nature’s pure flavors make this an enjoyable, healthy breakfast in bed. So relax, fuel up, then go out and do something exciting to post to Facebook. ☺
Olive oil cooking spray
1 ripe but firm tomato
1 cup loosely packed fresh baby spinach
3 egg whites
1 teaspoon water
Salt and pepper, to taste
Spray a grill pan with cooking spray and heat on high. Cut tomato into thick slices. Place on hot pan and cook until tomato is softened (and grill-marked) but still firm, about 1 minute on each side. Set aside and keep warm.
Liberally spray a small, heavy pan with cooking spray and heat over medium heat. Place baby spinach leaves in pan and cook until wilted, 1 to 2 minutes. Reduce heat to medium low. Whisk egg whites with water until frothy. Add eggs to heated pan and allow to cook slowly and gently, folding over around wilted spinach. Push back edges and let uncooked egg whites flow underneath. Cook until egg whites are set, but still glossy, about 2 to 3 minutes.
Fold in half and gently slide onto serving plate. Top with grilled tomato slices and season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.
Makes 1 serving.
See Dan’s facebook page if you are interested in learning more about his journey and commitment to helping others – http://www.facebook.com/Coach.Rudt
Post by Stephanie Noble.
The first rule of any design show makeover of a bedroom is more pillows! Not just the pillows you rest your head on while you sleep, but ambiance pillows of varying shapes, textures and patterns.
I’ll admit to being a reformed pillow fanatic. I wanted my bedroom to look like a hotel room every time I walked in. But, with a long commute, a full time job, a 19 month old son and a never ending stream of laundry to fold; my husband and I are lucky if the bed gets made. There is simply no time for complex pillow schemes. So we’ve streamlined our cushion display to three sleeping pillows each and a turquoise satin embroidered pillow. My great grandmother started the pillow in the 1920s. My grandmother worked on it at some point during the 1960s and my aunt finished it in the 1990s. This family treasure is the only decorative pillow in our cushion lineup.
That’s not to say I do not notice other pillows. I do, all the time. They are such a quick and easy way to freshen up a room. They’re also an easy nod to a holiday without going overboard. Although, I’m not a big fan of Valentine’s Day, I’ll admit to being attracted to Valentine pillows. Here are a few of my favorites.
These Scrabble-inspired pillows are all over Etsy.
This personalized tree initials pillow cover is available in five colors from Red Envelope.
This love postcard pillow cover is available online only from Pottery Barn.
It’s not too late to add a Valentine flair to your room.
Post by Mark T. Locker.
This is one of the silliest books I have read in a while. It was very refreshing. And it’s not just silly in the random insert-something-arbitrary-and-silly-here kind of book; it was actually, literally laugh out loud funny. Just ask my wife! Polly Horvath is enormously talented at writing subtle humor that children and adults alike will laugh at.
Madeleine is a smart girl with some utterly useless, kinda dumb parents. So when they go missing, she knows she must find them, because they are pretty much helpless without her. Her only clues are a letter signed “The Enemy” and a coded card with reference to rabbits and rabbit by-products. Spoiler alert: it’s foxes.
Luckily, Madeleine meets Mr. and Mrs. Bunny just when they had decided to buy fedoras so they could be detectives. Mr. and Mrs. Bunny have never detected before. Madeleine worries that she may be putting too much faith in them, not because they are new in the game but because they are bunnies. What Madeleine quickly learns is that the Bunnys are the closest she will come to being cared for and loved. And that marmots are very stupid and very fond of the Olde Spaghetti Factory. (These two points are not related. Probably.) Mr. and Mrs. Bunny are charming and adorable. I would love to be adopted by them.
Poignant, funny, action-packed, this book can be read by even as slow a reader as me in just a couple days. It’s well worth it!
Post by Mark T. Locker.
Personally, I don’t know what Peter Jackson was thinking remaking The Hobbit. He must have known that two perfect things came into being in the year 1977. The first being yours truly, the second being the animated musical movie The Hobbit. With music by Glenn Yarbrough and some fantastically hideous illustration, there was no way Peter Jackson was going to be able to hold a candle to this interpretation.
We owned the LP version of the movie (I can’t imagine whose great idea it was to have the entire movie sold as an audio with accompanying book but I loved it) and must have listened to it hundreds of times. You all know the story, Bilbo Baggins, Gollum, Gandalf, dwarves. Adventure, trolls, goblins, spiders!
The animated version, with its 1970s soundtrack, terrifying Gollum rendition, and ugly, ugly characters, is not to be missed. It has some classic voices of the era, including Hans Conried, the voice of Captain Hook, as Thorin. Seriously, it’s so bad/good.
Post by Kyle St. Romain.
A few weeks ago we discussed the various ways to achieve balanced design in your bedroom. To briefly recap, balance can be achieved in one of three ways: symmetrical, asymmetrical, or radial. Symmetrical balance is usually used in more formal spaces, while asymmetrical balance is often thought of as a more casual type of design. Radial balance can be either formal or informal, though it is most commonly used in dining arrangements where chairs are arranged in a circle around the dining table.
This week, I want to take a moment to discuss another fundamental principle of design, rhythm. Rhythm, also called repetition, is a way of timing your eyes’ movement through a space. While it is most often thought of in terms of music, rhythm is equally applicable to visual design. Rhythm is often the glue that holds the overall look of a room together.
Rhythm can be employed in a number of ways: linear rhythm, repetition, alternation, or progression—each of which will be discussed briefly below.
Linear rhythm relies on the movement of the viewers’ eyes across an individual line. A simple way to think of linear rhythm is to picture a sunset over the horizon; the horizon is the linear line that draws your eyes across the image. In your bedroom, you may hang your pictures at a certain height to create linear rhythm, or have a large headboard with a flat top as a focal point of the room.
Repetition involves the use of a particular pattern throughout a room to create a timing of movement across the room. Picture a wall with a lot of small pictures hanging very close to each other. Now picture that same room with fewer, larger pictures spaced further apart. In the room with the smaller pictures, your eyes would likely move swiftly across the room as they take in image, after image, after image, in quick succession. Contrast this with the larger, spaced out images: your eyes would likely move across the room much slower as each image commands more attention.
Alteration is a specific type of pattern that relies on a particular sequence of repetition. For example, your décor could alternate between large and small objects, or light and dark colors. Alternation is different than typical patterning, as it is not necessary to recreate the exact element throughout the pattern. For example, you could alternate between gold and blue stripes throughout your room, with each stripe being of a different size.
Progression is achieved by gradually increasing or decreasing the characteristic of an element throughout the room. For example, you could place a set of vases linearly and arrange them according to size, or color.
When thinking about the rhythm of your bedroom, don’t limit your thoughts to one perspective of the room. Rather, you need to be mindful of the overall feel of the room. The best way to see how to successfully employ rhythm in your bedroom’s design is to see what other people have done. As usual, Houzz is an excellent resource for this, and you can browse rooms that scream rhythm here.
How do you use rhythm in your own design? Share your thoughts in the comments below.