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P. S. One of my own favorite frugal luxuries is reading your lovely comments and sharing ideas.


alley herb garden

alley herb garden
Originally uploaded by -Chad Johnson
Look at this ...

Alley Herb Garden...

I found this picture on flickr and was enchanted at the cleverness and usefulness of this amazing idea. Please click on the picture to learn more about this herb garden discovered in an alley behind a restaurant.

I am inspired to do something like this in our tiny garden!! It goes well with the rain gutter planters in our post a few weeks ago on Frugal Luxuries by the Seasons blog.

Do you have similar gardening strategies for small spaces? We'd love to hear about them!

Good thoughts from...


Lovely bloom...

A charming garden shed...

Constructed entirely of re-purposed and re-cycled materials...

with a vintage door and leaded windows.

A soothing fountain...

& Love Birds... frozen in time...

offer a softer prospective on the green life.


An Enchanting Tale...

Rosie Goes to the Prom


Non-Fiction Fairy Tale TM!

Here they front of a friend's enchanted rose bush!!

Aren't the roses lovely?

Katie designed and sewed (i.e., "created") Rosie's dress...

We all journeyed to downtown Los Angeles...
only to discover this most beautiful silk fabric...
for a song!

The dress was inspired by a vintage 1920's gown we have in our collection!

I love this picture!!

Katie did her little sister's hair as well.
First...we went to Trader Joe's and found two dozen, small white roses for $5.99...

Using the magic hands of Katie... and a few bobby pins...
...Rosie had a fairy tale hair style.

The lace is a remnant from the trim on the dress.

Our beautiful Rose.

With corsage and boutonniere in place...

the young gentleman helps Rosie into her carriage...

as we wave them off to the ball!

The end.


A Touch of Country: One Mantle 3 ways

A Touch of Country: One Mantle 3 ways

If you like options...and simple, inexpensive ways to redecorate...take a peek at this post!


Is Happiness Contagious?

Bhutan mountainside
"Most people are as happy as they
make up their minds to be."

--Abraham Lincoln

Have you heard of the country of Bhutan in the Himalayas where they actually have a government Ministry whose purpose is to see to the happiness of its people? They literally measure the gross national product of happiness. They feel it is the ultimate purpose of government to invest in the happiness of its people.


The Harvard "Happiness" Study

"A study of more than 4,700 people who were followed over 20 years found that people who are happy or become happy boost the chances that someone they know will be happy. The power of happiness, moreover, can span another degree of separation, elevating the mood of that person's husband, wife, brother, sister, friend or next-door neighbor.

"You would think that your emotional state would depend on your own choices and actions and experience," said Nicholas A. Christakis, a medical sociologist at Harvard University who helped conduct the study published online today by BMJ, a British medical journal. "But it also depends on the choices and actions and experiences of other people, including people to whom you are not directly connected. Happiness is contagious."

One person's happiness can affect another's for as much as a year, the researchers found, and while unhappiness can also spread from person to person, the "infectiousness" of that emotion appears to be far weaker.

Previous studies have documented the common experience that one person's emotions can influence another's -- laughter can trigger guffaws in others; seeing someone smile can momentarily lift one's spirits. But the new study is the first to find that happiness can spread across groups for an extended period. "

Read More from this amazing Washington Post article by clicking HERE.


I've always suspected this to be true, how wonderful that now this theory has been proven.

People who are genuinely happy can positively affect the lives of others.

Now, more than ever, we have strong reasons...and a choose happiness.



"When I'm worried and I can't sleep...

.... I count my blessings instead of sheep

And I fall asleep counting my blessings

When my bankroll is getting small I think of when I had none at all

And I fall asleep counting my blessings."

--Irving Berlin

(From the 1954 movie "White Christmas")


Yesterday, Katie and I were nestled on our most-comfy sofa in the nook thinking about a good friend. As we were sitting there we decided to consciously appreciate the frugal luxuries that have popped-up in our lives this week and make a list. We decided to share them with you too!

The yummy lunch special from our very FAVORITE Chinese restaurant Fortune Cookie
COST: six dollars
FRUGAL LUXURY: healthy eating, priceless...

My amazingly easy conserves made from a handful of over-ripe strawberries...
COST: about one dollar,
FRUGAL LUXURY: homemade jam for my family, priceless...

Receiving visits from my crazy squirrel friends
COST: about a quarter
FRUGAL LUXURY: squirrelly friendships? Priceless!!

Shangra La tea, sent to me via my brother-in-law (he bought it in bulk and had a bunch extra).
COST: Free
FRUGAL LUXURY: drinking the best iced tea in the world with family and friends? Priceless!

My HUMUNGOUS, GORGEOUS pine cone (four inches by five or more) that Katie found for me yesterday and brought home... it now sits atop a cake plate in the living room (low carb)...
COST: Free
FRUGAL LUXURY: a gift from your child... priceless

The story about the chihuahua dog who was blown away by a strong gust of wind and was lost for two days...until a pet psychic informed its elderly, heart-broken owners of its wearabouts and she is now safely home (that story courtesy of today's Oprah show).
COST: Free
FRUGAL LUXURY: a hearty laugh, a good cry, and a happy ending... priceless

A most welcome cup of Starbucks brewed coffee this morning... along with MIke's company... enjoyed it at the marina while watching the boats leave the harbor...
COST: $1.95
FRUGAL LUXURY: being awake... priceless

Stumbling upon a yard sale on the way home and finding four, cut crystal tumblers (brand new)... a picnic basket with lid (for future frugal luxuries)... amongst other goodies...
COST: $15
FRUGAL LUXURY: the satisfaction of buying expensive luxuries at a fraction of the original cost... priceless

Sitting on our most comfy old couch with my delightful, de-lovely, daughter!!
COST: Free
FRUGAL LUXURY: Quality time with my loved ones... priceless

Are we blessed or what??!!

Remember, frugal luxuries are more than daily occurrences... they're a way of life!

What are your frugal luxuries from this week?

Tracey and Katie xoxox

A set of four, brand new, crystal glasses ($2.50 each)

A picnic basket to hold future frugal luxuries...


...made in Durango, Colorado, U.S.A. (quite like new)!

Mike spied this heavy, rectangular platter for a mere $3.00 ...

...imagine our surprise when we turned it over to find it was vintage, English stoneware!

This most precious treasure of all was given to me by my grown-up little girl, Katie!


The original "FRUGAL LUXURIES" ~ Based on the books by Tracey McBride ~ Established 1993

A warm Thank You to all kind souls and kindred spirits who generously take the time to leave a comment...your encouragement, trust and support are deeply appreciated...please know that we read each and every message and will respond as time allows.


Frugal Luxuries
is a registered trademark.


"FRUGAL LUXURIES: Simple Pleasures to Enhance Your Life and Comfort Your Soul" was written by Tracey McBride and published by Bantam Books, NY, in 1997. It was the first of its genre to synergize the elements of simplicity, frugality and gracious living.

After more than a decade, FRUGAL LUXURIES has never been out of print and is now more relevant than ever.

"It's our hope that a new generation, faced with a teetering economy, will also find this information helpful and enlightening."

Sending Good Thought to Our Special Band of Kind and Kindred Souls!

Frugal Luxuries Book I

Frugal Luxuries by the Seasons Book II

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