Teresa's Mosaic Cafe Gets a Throwdown From Bobby Flay

I am so excited! I just learned that Bobby Flay traveled to Tucson and had a "throwdown" with the Matias family at Teresa's Mosaic Cafe. This is a restaurant that we did the interior of, and as with all Lifestylist® Designed challenges we spent a lot of time getting to know the family and their needs before we came up with a plan.
Teresa's is all about family and the wonderful handmade food so the interior had to have as much personality as the family does. To do this we designed tables made of handmade tiles - thousands of them all that we made by hand. It was an extensive amount of work but the results were definitely worth it.
The episode airs on the Food Network - check out dates and times for your area.

Homearama Returns to Rochester, NY

It's hard to believe it's already time for Homearama again - where does the time go? But this is the perfect time to visit Rochester - the produce season is in full swing, perfect weather and it's also a great time to be thinking about decorating ideas to warm up your home with.
This year this annual event will be held at WaterSong in Penfield August 14th - 22nd. Sponsored by the Rochester Homebuilders Association this 9 days will not only highlight these 5 beautiful homes but there will also be an abundance of wine tasting, cooking demos and decorating seminars.
Lifestylist® Design has teamed up with @home Builders three different years to participate in this great event, but my favorite home was definitely the Ronald McDonald Show House we did a few years ago. We teamed up with the amazing group of volunteers from the Ronald McDonald House and merchandised a home using furniture, artwork and accessories that were donated to Ronald McDonald for their annual ABC Sale.It was truly a Lifestylist® Designed home -  I spent three months going over images they would send me of new donations and digging through their warehouse to find the perfect items for this home and by the end we did!
It was a fun challenge to show how you can do a beautifully decorated home using only "gently cherished" items. The best part was @home Builders then did an online auction and visitors to the home could bid on each room. All of the proceeds then went to the Ronald McDonald House Charities. From this, the dinner auction prize and other events that @home Builders did with the home they were able to raise over $25,000 for the charity. To see photos and get more information about this show house, check out the website we designed for it.

Class Acts

Having the right ingredients is the key to making any dish successfully, and knowing the right sources and people when you are planning an event is just as important.
I've hosted or helped with many parties over the years including my daughter's wedding, and hiring an event planner isn't a luxury, it's a necessity. I know working with a planner when I lived in Dallas and the event was in Orlando saved me money and made it possible to have a Lifestylist Designed wedding in a location I never would have known about without the planner's help.
Julie Eastman is someone I have worked with in the past and is now concentrating on doing event planning. Her company, Extraordinary Events and Design does amazing work and her blog, Design by Jules is always full of great ideas. This week she wrote about Food Glorious Food, another great source that I love because not only is their food beautiful and tasty, their staff couldn't be more fun to be around and they give back quite a bit to the community. Now I can't stop thinking about their Crab Benedict - I guess it's time to get Julie to do a party for me so I can sample them!
You can always tell when people love what they do, and these two amazing teams prove that when when you put great talent together anything is possible (even on a budget).

Filling Up Empty Bowls

There's nothing better than giving back, but when you are also able to discover new trends and products for yourself it's a bonus!
Not only did I come home from the Empty Bowls event with a beautiful, handcrafted new bowl, I also discovered a company that sells "pantry staples" - pre-measured ingredients that you can easily make up into homemade meals quickly and in a cost-effective manner.
Homemade Gourmet offers meal solutions that make it easy for anyone to whip up a great meal, even if you think you can't cook. They had Lemon Sandwich Cookies at the event, and they were divine! I thought they came from a restaurant and I was thrilled to find out they were something I could make at home.
Fortunately they had one of their catalogs in our goodie-bags along with a sample of their Fire Grilled Salsa Mix so I can get some of the mixes for myself. I'm also anxious to try the salad mixes, especially the Cilantro Lime Chicken Salad mix - it sounds like a perfect meal to enjoy outside on the patio soon.

Food as Art

The North Texas Food Bank held their annual Empty Bowls event again today and it's an event that this Lifestylist® tries to never miss. Combining two of my favorite activities - food and art - it's an opportunity to pick up a beautiful handcrafted bowl and sample some fantastic food and beverages from local companies.
Local artisans donate their time and talents to create handmade bowls that re truly a labor of love, and lucky attendees of the event then get to pick out their favorite to take home and enjoy. Their was also a potter there that was doing a demonstration so we could see how much skill is needed to create each bowl.
All proceeds go to fund the North Texas Food Bank.

Savor Dallas

I'm so excited that it's almost time for Savor Dallas! This is the 5th year for the event, and I'm proud to say that I've attended every one and wouldn't miss it this year for anything.
This two day event features the best in food and wine, and it's the perfect opportunity to sample those wines that you've always wanted to try. As a Lifestylist® I always view this as a great opportunity to find out what the latest trends are in food, wine and beverages as well. Last year there was a grapefruit infused vodka that they mixed with grapefruit juice that was fantastic - not too sweet, and the perfect option for a unique spin on a Mimosa.
Photographer Lisa Stewart is responsible for the photography of this event - be sure to take a look at her images from previous year and I promise you you'll wish Savor started tomorrow!
Alas, the event won't be held until March 6th and 7th in the Victory area, Arts District and downtown Dallas. If you can't wait until then to sample what will be offered this year be sure to take a look at th elist on the Savor Dallas site of who will be attending.  There are also "Tasting Notes" by some of the wines that will be offered that will give you a preview of what to expect. Tickets can be purchased on the website for all of the events.

Robins Bites

Something that is very important to this Lifestylist® is cooking with kids, and teaching them from the beginning how to eat well and delight in the food that they eat. As part of this passion I've gotten involved in Days of Taste and met Robin Plotkin - an amazing Licensed Dietitian, communications consultant and Mom. She has given her time to the Days of Taste program for years and truly understands the importance of teaching kids about nutrition and making it fun.
Tomorrow is a day I'm really excited about - I get to work with Robin and Lisa Stewart Photography on a project to spread the word about Robins Bite. Lots of food, styling and great information. It's going to be a lot of fun, and I can't wait to share the results with you here.