Bloom and Grow!

NK Zinnia

I first knew of Nancy Kirkpatrick when, through mutual friends, she began to follow The Permanent Tourist.  Then, when I attended the Witches Hour event in October, there she was snapping photographs of all of the ladies in their witchy costumes.  I knew from the way she had me pose before taking my picture that she truly knew what she was doing.  I will always treasure that photograph and I now have a wonderful new friend to treasure as well.  When Nancy and I met to discuss my writing a post about her work we talked for well over an hour about our lives, where we’ve been and where we hope to go.  Then she mentioned that she really loves photographing flowers.  She even returned to the Market at Sea Island, where we met for coffee, and snapped  a photo of one of the beautiful zinnias blooming in the lovely gardens there.

PicMonkey Collage NK fall wblack - Copy

After our meeting Nancy began to send me her floral photographs and I was just blown away.  First of all, she is a very talented photographer, but secondly, her ability to capture a bloom with the right light and shadow is just spectacular.

white peony 1

White peonies have long been my favorite flower and this photo sends waves of happiness wafting through me!  Isn’t it fabulous?

PicMonkey Collage NK Pink wblack

And these flowers in tones of pink and, what I call, ashes of roses!

PicMonkey Collage hydrangea black border

Hydrangea?  Yep, Nancy photographs them in all their glory.

PicMonkey Collage NK calla etc. with black

Calla lilies, gardenia and ranunculus….so feminine and soft.

PicMonkey Collage NK cards wblack

She’s working on a line of cards using her photographs with soft graphics, I want the entire collection!

PicMonkey Collage NK peachy pink

Nancy will be launching her Fine Art Photography, featuring these wonderful floral beauties and more!  She also continues her work with portrait photography, capturing the soul of her subject in magical ways!  You can visit Nancy’s website here to view her beautiful floral photography:


Simple Sundays

I love the music of “Bliss”.  The piece I’m sharing today is entitled “Sunrise”.  Get your cup of coffee or tea, sit back and relax.  The holidays are upon us so take a moment to breathe deeply, calm your mind and be quiet as you listen to this soothing music.  It’s a beautiful video too!  I’ll be heading off to New Orleans on Tuesday, but I’ll be writing from there!  So much to share in one of my favorite cities!  We’ll be enjoying time with family and eating way too much delicious creole and French food!  It’s always a wonderful time that we look forward too!  Wishing you all a blessed Sunday with the peace of understanding and the company of family and friends!

On The Radio

I had a great time talking with Jane Bangert and GeeGee Adams about this year’s Cassina Garden Club Tour of Homes.  This year’s event promises to be a real treat!  Listen in as we discuss all of the wonderful things in store for you to see and enjoy!

Finally Friday!

I have been having more fun exploring all of the delicious combinations of olive oils and vinegars available at Golden Isles Olive Oil.  Mr. T and I have embarked on an 80/20 version of the Paleo diet.  We’re feeling better, losing weight just in time to go to New Orleans for Thanksgiving and the food I’m preparing is delicous, thanks to the right seasonings and condiments.  I sometimes wait until the last minute to decide what I’m making for dinner, which was the case on this particular day.  We are still including a bit of dairy, not daily, but we haven’t cut it out entirely.  So you’ll see some dairy in the cauliflower recipe I’m featuring along with this fabulous Chicken Provence I dreamed up.  This was so delicious, seconds were requested and offered since we followed all of the rules!

Chicken Provence

Cauliflower Gratin with Fresh Baby Kale


chicken provence

Chicken Provence


1/4 cup Wild Mushroom and Sage Olive Oil

2 Tablespoons Lavender Balsamic Vinegar

2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

1 teaspoon Sangre de Cristo Spice Company, Herbes de Provence

1/4 tesaspsoon SDCS dry mustard

sea salt & pepper to taste

1/2 dry white wine

Mix all ingredients together.  Place two large, boneless, skinless chicken breasts in a large ziploc bag.  Pour the marinade over the chicken and refrigerate for 2 – 4 hours, turning every half hour or so.

Heat the oven to 350 degrees.  In a cast iron skillet, or other oven proof skillet, heat 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil over medium high heat.  Add the chicken breasts and sear for four minutes on each side.  Pour the marinade over the chicken and place in the preheated oven for one half hour.  Remove and thinly slice the chicken for serving.

Cauliflower Gratin with Fresh Baby Kale

1/2 head of cauliflower, separated into flowerets (this should make about four cups of cauliflower)

4 tablespoons butter

1/3 cup heavy cream

salt and pepper to taste

1/2 cup shredded gruyere cheese

Place the cauliflower in a pan and add the butter and heavy cream.  Cover and lightly simmer for about fifteen minutes, or until the cauliflower is tender enough to mash.  Season with salt and pepper and add the shredded cheese, stir to combine.  Heat through and serve with chopped baby kale.  I got my kale at Uncle Don’s….always fresh and so delicious!

It’s A Family Thing…



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I thought about whether to categorize this post under food & entertaining or people.  I opted for people because I truly feel the people who own Cj’s Pizza here on St. Simons Island are what make this restaurant so special! I first met Graham Owens and his lovely wife, Ada, at the pier crawl during the Food & Spirits festival last October.  One bite of the pizza samples they were offering festival goer’s that evening and was I impressed.  What I tasted was so reminiscent of a particular pizza I loved while living in New York City years ago.  I knew I wanted more and I wanted to meet the people behind the name Cl’s.

Cj's 4

Graham spent his teenage years here on St. Simons Island working his way through high school and then some as a pizza maker at Cj’s.  He has a special place in his heart for the recipes he learned, the making of the dough and the relationship with clients who come to enjoy one of the most delicious pizza’s I’ve had in a long time.  His heart is in this business in every way.  He shared with me the fact that the pizza sauce he starts every pie with is made from scratch with the original recipe that has been in use for over twenty years.

PicMonkey Collage Cj's sauce etc.

The pans that hold the dough for the famous deep dish pizza are aged and seasoned to perfection so that they produce a perfect crust every time.  Each pie is hand made with the freshest toppings you can imagine.

PicMonkey Collage Cj's mushroom

I highly recommend the Magic Mushroom pizza that features homemade basil pesto, plenty of pine nuts, shitake mushrooms, red onion, the famous red sauce and lots of freshly grated mozzarella cheese.

PicMonkey Collage Cj's Margherita

And Graham makes regular pizza as well.  Mr. T prefers this to deep dish so I had a Margherita Madness pizza prepared to take home and found it to be just as delicious as the deep dish.

PicMonkey Collage Cj's restaurant

I love the fact that this is a family owned business.  When Ada and Graham graduated from the University of Georgia and moved to Atlanta, seeking positions in their selected fields of marketing, for Ada, and landscape design, for Graham, they were not successful.  The rest is history.  Graham’s lovely mother who maintained a friendship with Terri, then owner of Cj’s, told Terri of the kid’s plight and the offer to buy Cj’s began.  These two have it going in a big way with wonderful customer service and an excellent product that has kept us going back for pizza almost once a week since that first taste!  I haven’t made it to the other items on the menu yet, but I plan too.  Lasagna, eggplant parmesan and so many other favorite Italian dishes all hand prepared with the most delicious ingredients…how could you go wrong?  Everything about this restaurant reminds me of neighborhood, family owned Italian restaurants in New York City and that is a VERY good memory!

PicMonkey Collage Cj's family

And there is Arthur!  Is he a cutie or what?  At almost two years old he’s learning the family trade from the ground floor up.  There is just something wonderful about the special restaurants on this island that are not a part of major corporations.  It’s what makes the island interesting and keeps us coming back for more!  Now that my mouth is watering for the crunchy goodness of that deep dish pizza, I’ve got to end for now!  I hope you’ll try Cj’s if you haven’t, I know you’ll love it!   In fact, this is the perfect place to go when you’ve had too much turkey next week….pizza is always on our list for the weekend after Thanksgiving!   Don’t forget to tell them you read about them on The Permanent Tourist…you’ll be rewarded with 10% off.  Go here to see the menu and read more:

Cj’s Italian Restaurant – 405 Mallery Street – St. Simons Island, GA – 912-634-2711

Grateful Abundance

Thanksgiving 5

My most favorite holiday is coming up.  Some years we celebrate at home with family and others we visit our kids in New Orleans or Atlanta.  This year it’s New Orleans so I’m keeping my decorating down to a minimum since we won’t be opening our doors to guests.  It doesn’t stop me from dreaming, however.  It’s all due to this Facebook post by Edward on St. Simons that got me started.  The picture of the lovely arrangement above is from their wonderful shop in Redfern Village.  This got the wheels rolling in my head, sending me to Pinterest and all sorts of decorating ideas to welcome the season.  I especially love Thanksgiving because it is a celebration of thanks and abundance!  We always form a circle and share what we are grateful for before we dive into all of the delicious food.  So take a moment to dream with me and if you are at home for the holiday you just might get some ideas!

Thanksgiving 1 lg.

I love the country charm of this porch, overflowing with fall flowers, pumpkins and other goodies!  It just calls out, “Come Join Us….Celebrate Abundance!”

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And this setting is perfection to me.  I love the arched doorway and the planters that were used for stacking pumpkins.  I’m wondering if those are lemon or magnolia leaves they layered between the pumpkins.  Isn’t it lovely?


Thanksgiving 3 lg.

This final beauty is another one I love.  Ornamental cabbage, seasonal gourds, pumpkins and corn plants abound.  This is probably my favorite vignette!  It’s about saying thank you for all that we have in our lives!  And, if you haven’t, make a list of everything that you have to be grateful for.  My list keeps growing and growing.

Thanksgiving 4

I suspect, judging from this other photo from Edward on Facebook that you will find just about anything you need or dream of to put your own show of abundance together for Thanksgiving day! It’s time to make your plan and get started if you haven’t already!  Let the decorating begin!


Sweet Cinnamon

As the holiday season draws near I’m beginning to think of recipes and that always leads to sweets.  Cookies, candy, desserts and, on cold mornings, cinnamon toast.  My mom always made this for my brother and me as children.  I still remember the sweet, crunchy goodness of sugar mixed with ground cinnamon, sprinkled over buttered bread and cooked under the broiler until it all melted together….so delicious.  I use cinnamon in a lot of my baking, but have lately begun to read of its healing properties.  So, I’m sharing a few things about cinnamon with you today.  In a way, it means you CAN have your cake and it too!  I hope you’ll enjoy reading this post and consider cinnamon as more than just something to mix with sugar!  Note:  I am not advocating using cinnamon in place of what your doctor may have prescribed….always check with your physician first!

First off, cinnamon stops the blood from forming unhealthy clots.  The oil in it, Cinnamaldehyde, has been proven to be an anti-inflammatory as well.  Sprinkling a bit of cinnamon on oatmeal or in a morning cup of coffee is a great thing!

And furthermore, cinnamon has anti-microbial properties.  Recent studies have found that cinnamon acts as a natural preservative in food and helps ward off fungal growth in the human body….who knew!

There are also studies that show cinnamon to have the ability to lower blood sugar, triglycerides, bad cholesterol and improve insulin activity.  People with these health issues who began to take just 1 gram of cinnamon a day saw definite improvement.  More proof that there is something natural that heals all sorts of human dis-ease.

I think one of my favorite facts about cinnamon is that mixed with honey it will shut down a cold in no time!  No more sniffles, hacking or coughing….cinnamon and honey….yum!  One teaspoon of honey mixed with 1/4 teaspoon of ground cinnamon will do the trick.  Take this every couple of hours and you’ll feel better in no time!

So get yourself some good cinnamon and keep it around.  Heat up a mug of almond milk, add a tablespoon of local honey and swirl it with a cinnamon stick.  You’ll want to make sure you get the best organic cinnamon powder or cinnamon oil you can find, then enjoy!  And, before I close, you may find that you think more clearly when smelling cinnamon…it’s clinically proven to improve brain function!  So much from one little piece of bark!  Cinnamon…..try it….’tis the season!

Ho Ho Ho!

new gva logo

‘Tis the season to begin thinking about gift giving and nothing could be more fun than attending Glynn Visual Art’s annual Mistletoe Market!  It’s coming up this Friday – Sunday, November 21 – 23, with a new venue and lots of entertainment for the whole family to enjoy!

mistletoe market logo

This year’s Market is held in both the GVA building as well as Postell Park, directly across the street.  You’ll hear a strolling young ventriloquist, Cole Tucker, just thirteen years old with a voice you won’t believe!  Phil King, our own local story telling songster will perform on Saturday and Sunday at 3:00 for your listening enjoyment.

There will be demonstrations on wreath making, decoupage, basket weaving, jewelry making and painting on glass.  Sure to inspire you to make a few of your gifts this year!

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This year’s event also includes a new event, a Wreath Affair, in which various artists and groups are hand making wreaths for silent auction to benefit Glynn Visual Arts.   Judith Paixao, of Bermuda Sea Glass Jewelry fame, has designed a one of a kind wreath out of milky white sea glass.  I have to say it is one of the most beautiful wreaths I have ever seen.  Elegant yet simplistic, this amazing piece can hang year round as a beacon to fine island living.


Make merry and join in this fabulous weekend that will surely ring in the holiday season in a big way!  Santa Claus will make his first appearance at 6:00 pm on Friday evening.  What fun to see the light in children’s eyes as they are greeted by Santa!

 Glynn Visual Arts – 529 Beachview Dr, St Simons Island, GA 31522

Simple Sundays

I’m sharing a lovely video of Fall Celtic music today.  Adrian von Ziegler is the composer.  This is wonderfully relaxing background music by which to meditate…..sit outside sipping coffee….or simply being quiet.  Sunday, being the first day of the week, is the time to destress and set the pace for the coming week.  We can “make our movies” and envision how we want our lives to be.  Sit back and relax as you listen to this beautiful music…perfect for a fall day!

On The Radio

My radio show was a bit different this week.  My guest, Blaise Dismer, is a licensed social worker, he is a master of dealing with all sorts of issues people experience during the holidays.  Whether you battle depression, anxiety or you just need to have a tune up…or a loved one has one of these issues, this show may help!  Listen in as we discuss how to deal with holiday stresses in a positive, effective way!