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Tabletop and Bar Cart Decor at The Boston Design Center

masquerade inspired bar cart decor
Michelle Cortizo of Cortizo Interiors.

A few of weeks ago, I had the pleasure of joining my design friends for a first of its kind event at the Boston Design Center. Before I get event specific, allow me to mention that the Boston Design Center is an event destination not to be missed. I first fell in love with BDC for its floors of fabulous design showrooms and now it’s becoming a go-to spot for cool events too. Honestly, I get so excited for my field trips to BDC, I should just pop a tent in there and call it my home away from home. Keep an eye out for future BDC events.

The Event

OK, now onto the event. It was called Heading Home to Dinner and featured tabletop and bar cart decor by our area’s top designers. The barren fifth floor space of the Boston Design Center was transformed for a sold-out evening of music, schmoozing and decorative inspiration. Proceeds went to the non-profit Heading Home.

With the holidays upon us, enjoy these exquisite photos by my friend Emily O’Brien of Emily O’Brien Photography. Let them spark ideas for your own festive tabletop or bar cart decor. Follow Emily on Instagram: EmilyOBrienPhoto or EmilyOBrienPhoto_Design. Keep an eye out on Emily’s blog for more great photos from this event.


Tabletop Decor

This tabletop was named Compass Rose-Putting Boston on the Map and was a wonderful nod to the Boston Seaport. It was designed by Renee Rucci Design and Julie Wood of The Leading Edge Drapery.
A tabletop by Pamela Copeman Design pays homage to Claude Monet. I love the centerpiece of paintbrushes and the use of framed art.
I’m mad for Duffy Design Group’s,  Alice’s Acid Tea Party table. So fun and colorful!

Bar Cart Decor

Looking down! New Year’s Champagne, a masquerade inspired bar cart by Michelle Cortizo of Cortizo Interiors.
Nantucket inspired bar cart decor by Linda Holt Creative
Linda Holt of Linda Holt Interiors brought Nantucket to Boston with this pretty bar cart.
Summer inspired bar cart decor
Kim Macumber of Kim Macumber Interiors created The Summer Cart complete with plantlife, artwork and, of course, cocktails!

Bonus Photo Courtesy of Yours Truly

I couldn’t resist adding this photo that I snapped of Wendy Ditcham Interiors’ Springtime in Paris. So lovely!


E.L. Marker Press Release Announcing My Travel Memoir

EL Marker press release


If you haven’t already seen it on Facebook, I wanted to share the press release put out by my publisher, E.L. Marker, announcing my travel memoir Musing Mediterranean.

To those who have so kindly commented on Facebook – thank you so much for your encouragement and support. To my blog readers, I hope you will enjoy this perspective on my book and please consider reserving your copy of Musing Mediterranean when it is available for pre-order in 2018 (scroll to the bottom of the read more link below.)

As seen at WiDoPublsing.com:

Beth Daigle’s Travel Memoir to be Released by E.L. Marker

SALT LAKE CITY, UT November 01, 2017

When your whole family says, “Let’s take a vacation to the Mediterranean!” and it nearly gives you a nervous breakdown, how do you respond? You grit your teeth and agree to it. At least, that’s what Beth Daigle did in 2012… and somehow she lived to tell the tale.

Before her Mediterranean adventures, Daigle had been writing for many years. After numerous blogs and articles, she was ready to write a book. She states, “I had toyed around with several book ideas, but none seemed quite right.” Once the impending trip approached, the author grew more focused on keeping herself together than writing a story.

Read more…



The Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown-Book Club

Wow! What a week. Power was out for two days and no internet or TV for three. I was forced to unplug and, in a way, it was a nice break. But alas, we are up and running and back online as usual. This week on the blog, book club was back in business. And by business I’m talking more about wine and cheese than the book, but if you are interested in the book here’s what I can tell you.

The Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown

The Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown is a best seller and came highly recommended, yet book club gave it a unanimous thumbs down. To be honest, no one actually read it in its entirety. Most didn’t read it at all and I skimmed the majority just to get to the end.

The Synposis (a brief excerpt from Goodreads)

Daniel James Brown’s robust book tells the story of the University of Washington’s 1936 eight-oar crew and their epic quest for an Olympic gold medal, a team that transformed the sport and grabbed the attention of millions of Americans. The sons of loggers, shipyard workers, and farmers, the boys defeated elite rivals first from eastern and British universities and finally the German crew rowing for Adolf Hitler in the Olympic games in Berlin, 1936.

The Review

We simply were not the right club for this book. As I see it, if you are passionate about the sport of rowing, you may like this book. If you are a history buff, you may enjoy this book. If you’re curious about Seattle, WA, this book may be for you.

Otherwise, like me, you may struggle to get into it. Deep, deep within the pages of excruciating and often unnecessary detail, that didn’t move the story forward, there was a decent story. I didn’t come to appreciate this until chapter twelve.

To me, this felt like a case of indulgent writing where the author couldn’t help but include every bit of minutia uncovered in the book’s creation.

There was so much backstory to every account that it struck me as all over the place. It jumped from the teamwork of a rowing crew to Nazi Germany to boxing, filmmaking, lumberjacking, boat making and more. Not to mention the compelling family dynamic of the main character which was lost among everything else.

I’m all for descriptive, colorful, even flowery writing, but I’m afraid this just went way overboard – no pun intended.

If you truly enjoyed this book, please forgive my lack of appreciation. I don’t discount it for the massive research that must have gone into its making. There were also occasions of truly deft writing, however just much too much of all of it.

Despite my struggle to reach the end of this book, I’m glad I got there. That’s the challenge of book club – to push through stories that aren’t to my taste, but have value none-the-less.

If not for this book, I may not have been inspired to check out the Head of the Charles for the first time. So much fun!


Head of the Charles

crew boat in Charles river


If not for our book club meeting, I wouldn’t have had the chance to cozy up to this lovely lady. Isn’t she sweet?


Lily and her friends


Did you read The Boys in the Boat? What did you think?

Next Up

Since bestselling author Elin Hilderbrand is visiting our area in December, book club has decided to give her Winter series a read. Options include Winter Street, Winter Stroll or Winter Storms. I can probably get through all three quicker than I did The Boys in the Boat.

I have a Publisher! Musing Mediterranean to be Published by E.L. Marker™

Musing Mediterranean to be published by publisher E.L. Marker

I am excited to report that I have signed a publishing contract for my travel memoir, Musing Mediterranean.

It’s funny that I started this blog as a means to promote my book and find a publisher who would help bring my fun, little story to life. Little did I know, the blog would take on a life of its own, but I am so happy that 3 Olives & Twist will have the opportunity serve its original purpose.

E.L. Marker™

I have partnered with E.L. Marker™, an imprint of WiDō Publishing™, a small press out of Salt Lake City, Utah. Soon enough, I will be in the throes of final edits, cover selection and the development of a promotional campaign. I will officially be able to call myself an author. I can’t wait.

Meanwhile, E.L. Marker™ is working on a press release to announce that I will be publishing with them. I look forward to sharing that with you when its available.

The book is targeted for release by fall 2018 – it hardly seems real. After so much time working on this one thing, it will finally be complete.

Thank you for supporting me on this writing journey.  I look forward to keeping you up to date on the final phases of book production and launch.

It’s Official! I Have a Teen Driver and I Want to Cry

car keys and Northeastern University pamphlet


I did not drive my girls to school today. They did not take a bus or catch a ride from a friend. Together, my 16-year old and 15-year old took off on their own without so much as a glance backward. The tears that welled up in my eyes were ones of joy, sadness and fear all at the same time.

When I was in my twenties I had a friend whose mom always cried when saying goodbye to her daughter. I didn’t get it back then – I get it now.

I know you understand. Sure, I’m relieved not to be their underappreciated chauffeur anymore, but sad that those days are behind me. My 15-year old made it clear that I’m out as her go-to ride and her sister is in. Not to worry my sweet darling – I realize that it’s much cooler to be driven around by your teen driver sister than by your annoying mother. Lucky they are close and my oldest isn’t opposed to carting her little sister around on her every whim.

It’s OK, I was once that little sister too. Back then I was well aware that I had a jump on my future via the independence of my sibling. The freedom, the control the excitement of being a teen driver is, in many ways, unparalleled.

But what about the constant worry? My fear for their safety tightens my chest in a such a dramatic way, I have to remind myself to breathe.

But it’s all good, right? Every little milestone these kids reach is a notch on our belt of parenthood. Good things are happening – they are growing, they are maturing, they are becoming adults. Good God, it’s hard to believe.

One more thing

To add to the thrill of our teen driver passing her driving test, that same day we attended her first official college tour.  She loved it, we loved it and, together, we took one more step toward an inevitable empty nest.

This is a crazy time in life. Weirdly, I kind of like it.