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BlogTour Ambiente and Frankfurt Germany

Posted by Denise McGaha
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Since returning from Germany and #BlogTour Ambiente last month, my life has been a whirlwind.  I have had two other trips since then and remodeled my kitchen and juggled various client projects.  So here is my long awaited recap of our amazing trip to Ambiente.  I have several posts to share with you but wanted to start here and talk about Frankfurt first.

I have never been to Frankfurt.  My great-grandfather, Estill Napolean Stifflemire, on my mothers side was the son of German immigrants.  My great-grandmother was a loving, kind woman who worked extremely hard caring for her family and living a on a meager income.  She lived to be 96 years old and thankfully lived long enough to meet my oldest son.

Estill Napolean Stifflemire

I never met my great-grandfather.  He was by all accounts a tough and sometimes abrupt man.  Many of my extended family members and the area where they settled outside of Austin, Texas have German and Wendish ancestry.  As a result, I was anxious to see Germany and had just a quick glance of Frankfurt while I was there.


S Bahn 2




Frankfurt City - Copy


Frankfurt Winter - Copy

What struck me the most about Frankfurt was the colors – darker deeper tones everywhere – green, navy, burgundy.  Colors that we sometimes consider dated were the norm in architecture and building design.  We only had one afternoon to spend in Frankfurt and it was a dreary day as you can tell from my photos, but I would love to spend more time in Germany because I found I really liked the food.  Schnitzel was of course my favorite!!  And of course the mustard in a tube….so great.




In my next post, I will share with you many of the details from BlogTour Ambiente and the Ambiente Fair we attended for four days.  PS – we didn’t get to see all of it even after FOUR days!!

And to combat the dreariness of the weather and season, there were fresh flowers everywhere.  A little spring inspiration for you.

Florals Press Room


Florals Villeroy



When we toured the Ambiente Fair however there were many more bright colors and inspiration.  So much color and style and chic design and I can’t wait to finish my post on my favorite tabletop moments with you.  Stay tuned!



Happy Monday, My Kitchen and Thunder Sleet

Posted by Denise McGaha
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I have so much to tell you since I last posted!  So here goes:

This weekend was full on so many levels.

Frankfurt Airport

First, I have had a lovely case of jetlag.  I usually do SO well when coming back from long trips, but BlogTour Ambiente with Modenus was so packed and full of fun, I guess it took me longer to recover than I expected.


I had planned to blog all weekend getting you up to speed on the beauty I saw while at the Ambiente Fair, but honestly so much other stuff happened and I was so drained, it just didn’t happen.  So you will see all my goodies…. just not today!  More on that to come.

Kitchen remodel

Second, I started my kitchen refresh.  I am calling it that because we are NOT embarking on a full face lift, but rather what I would call a little Botox.  My plans include keeping my existing cabinetry and just painting the maple to brighten the space.  I am also changing out countertops and backsplash, but that’s all.  I am retexturing the walls and painting the trim and walls a new color.  There will be furniture and drapery – maybe.  If I were my client I would hate me.  I am making it so difficult on my darling family.  Should we paint the walls this color or that?  I’m not sure if I want to commit to hexagon, what do you think?  Black island or Navy?  New breakfast table chandelier?  And the worst part?


We ripped out some of the countertops as well already and I spent six HOURS yesterday cleaning out the kitchen cabinets with Mr. M.  It was gross.  And overwhelming.  We have WAY too much and if we don’t start entertaining even more than we do now, we are just being plain wasteful with all the beautiful platters and goblets we own.  I threw away sippy cups that were somehow buried in the back of the cabinet – my children are 11 and 13.  Enough said.  So I will keep you updated on this great little project and I can’t wait for Mr. M to have a fresh new kitchen to create his culinary beauty for our family.


He is the best cook and this was the token “last supper” breakfast before we shut down the kitchen for the remodel Sunday.

Next, all of Dallas and Fort Worth woke up to an ice storm on Monday morning.  The meteorologists were using the words “Thunder Sleet” and all I could think of was Thunderstruck from AC/DC.  You can read all about it HERE.  So we have thunderstorms that are raining sleet that immediately freezes the minute it hits the ground.  Slick, icy roads – nice.


I have had the day to entertain my children, who also have no school today, and juggle an already full appointment schedule for work and try to keep all my clients happy.  Now don’t get me wrong – we have nothing on the Northeast which has just been deluged with snow for like – ever.  So I am not complaining, just sharing how this kept me on my toes for the week.  Stay warm Northern friends!

2015 dbc speakers

Next, I am supposed to leave Tuesday (Tomorrow!) for Atlanta and Design Bloggers Conference.  The amazing agenda is HERE and I can’t wait to hear Nate Berkus, Bunny Williams, Alexa Hampton, Brian Patrick Flynn and Marcus Sheridan speak.  I am so excited to be speaking as well (!!) and will be sharing a little more tomorrow about what to expect from my talk on Friday at DBC 2015.  I can’t wait to see all of my designer and blogger friends from across the country and learn the latest and greatest in blogging and new media trends.

Last – the packing.  Have you tried to pack for a four day trip a mere 6 days after returning from Europe?  A whole new set of great dresses and clothing required.  Everything you really love still at the cleaners or not being delivered due to “Thunder Sleet”.  Nothing that was seen last week in an Instagram photo with group (thank God for black) and comfort as the conference has long days and nights?  So off I go to get packed, juggle my schedule and check in at the airport for my flight tomorrow hoping it wont be cancelled due to  – “Thunder Sleet”.

Stay warm friends.


Happy Valentines Day from Frankfurt

Posted by Denise McGaha
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While I am so happy to be in Frankfurt for #BlogTourAmbiente with my favorite blogger friends, I am sad to be missing Valentines Day with my sweet children and Mr. M.  So in honor of the day of love, I am sending you my favorite red find today from the Ambiente fair.


This great red Frenchie was a large speaker and was blasting Katy Perry when we passed the booth.  Who can’t smile after seeing this?

I hope your day is filled with love and that even if you aren’t there in person with those who are your dearest, that your love for them is felt from afar as well.


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