Good Neighbors

Posted by laura on Jul 02 2009 | Awesome, Uncategorized

We really hit the neighborhood jackpot when we moved into our house. Today I’d like to feature my friend Joan, who lives almost directly across the street from us. She’s like having a sister next door – one who is fun, inventive, kind and wicked smart. She has such a beautiful aesthetic sense as well – have a look at what she pulled together for her younger daughter’s birthday tea party:


They have this arbor-type structure in their back yard, and she hung fabric between the posts to great effect – the color and weight of the fabric and the quality of the light coming through transform the table into something out of a story. An added bonus is that when the table is moved aside, the area becomes a stage with the curtains lending themselves nicely to all kinds of drama. Sweet. Then there’s this:


Seriously? It looked like a fairy tale. I wish I had a proper photo of that scone tree – it has a bird on the top and is one of the coolest serving pieces you can imagine. If you break it down, the items here are not too exotic – fruit, tea sandwiches, scones, mini roses – but the combination is gorgeous.

The other day, Joan knocked my socks off with an unexpected gift of a cookbook we’d both been coveting:


If you’re familiar with Cook’s Illustrated magazine, you’ll know what a treasure this is. In the magazine, they basically take recipes into the test kitchen and jump all over them – swapping ingredients and testing temperatures and examining methods until they feel they’ve come up with the best result. But instead of just handing over the final recipe, they tell you what they did – what worked, what didn’t. It’s awesome, and now that Joan and I each have one, it looks like our street just got significantly tastier.

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