Fargo Inspired Home Magazine July/August 2019

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Mykonos, Greece Nikos Psathoyiannakis Photography


FEATURE 42 SHOWCASE A Pasadena Police Department helicopter pilot and a U.S. government special agent arrive “home”.

DEPARTMENTS 12 COLOR Explore the color of Pantone 2019 Living Coral, inspired by the beauty of coral reefs. 22 GARDEN The Swegardens love for beautiful gardens take them across the globe to appreciate more! 30 TRAVEL Architectural mysteries bring family and friends to Greece — celebrating life, love and marriage.

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52 ELEMENTS Color, concrete and design merge as Kaufman Construction shares area projects with Inspired Home. 56 ART Artist Emily Williams-Wheeler shares her colorful talents with the FM community. 62 HUMOR Bernie Erickson is at it again. What could possibly go wrong on a fishing trip? 66 PETS Dr. Amy Anderson discusses whether our pets are truly loyal as they seem.






Wine Wisdom



76 INGREDIENTS Sharing food, life and love with Lauren Ferragut Carlson’s Scandinavian baking.

70 CUISINE Chef Granville Wood exalts the world of hearty summer salads.







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MUSINGS Distributed through The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead (selected distribution area) Inspired Home Associate Publisher Terri Ferragut Phone: 701.866.4405 Email: terri@inspiredhomemagazine.com terri.ferragut@gmail.com Find us on

(Inspired Home Magazine)

Jill Ockhardt Blaufuss Photography


elcome to our Summer Color issue! I think that for most of us, each season makes an indelible mark on our lives. Summertime brings a new crop of family gatherings that become memories for another generation. Life seems to breathe just a bit easier and our harried schedules seem to finally relax just enough for us to take a little pause. Summer is a grand season for anyone who enjoys flavor-packed produce from his or her backyard garden or for those who enjoy perusing a local farmers market for the most colorful and thoughtfully raised produce available. It is a season to enjoy the fruits of what the earth presents us — good eating! This time of warmth brings awe-inspiring color to our gardens and reminds us all of the importance of color in its most native and basic forms. Color affects our emotions, from interior design to enjoying a delicious plated meal set before us. Color is a universal tool. It sells homes, it warns and informs, and it sells clothing, cosmetics and cars. The use of color in science and medicine has the power to save a life and is placed strategically everywhere to guide and direct us. In this issue, we discover the power of color on many levels. From the decorative concrete we incorporate into our outdoor living spaces to the color we choose to adorn our homes — color is plentiful and essential. Our reaction to it is fundamental. Our natural world provides us with a palette of colors each and every day. Appreciate it all and revel in it. Enjoy the Summer Color issue!

Editorial Director Terri Ferragut Creative Terri Ferragut Jessica Joanides Susan Walker Director of Operations Scott Drzewiecki Contributing Photographers Travis Beauchene Jill Ockhardt Blaufuss Lauren Ferragut Carlson Brian Kaufman Granville Wood Contributing Writers Lauren Ferragut Carlson Bernie Erickson Terri Ferragut Bailey Hovland Ashley Ferragut Johnson Wanda M. Perkins Dayna Del Val Granville Wood Copy Editor Keri Guten Cohen Social Media Director Bailey Hovland

Production representative

Terri Ferragut Associate Publisher Editorial Director terri.ferragut@gmail.com terri@inspiredhomemagazine.com

Franklin Place 29200 Northwestern Hwy., Suite 114 Southfield, MI 48034 (248) 546-7070

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A beautiful collection of exceptional home designs with essential upgrades and craftsmanship for today’s lifestyle.

4151 38th St S, Fargo 701-364-2781

Clay Dietrich President

Tom Dietrich Vice-President


Heather Sagvold Designer


o t e m o c l We

Every issue we share a fresh and local approach to your home and life. WAnDA Perkins For more than 20 years as a freelance writer, Perkins has enjoyed creatively crafting stories about local, national and international people and topics. She lives in Fargo and is author of Blessing After Blessing — Seeing God's Blessings in All the Seasons of life.

Terri FerrAGUT Every issue, we take great pride in presenting this beautiful local home and lifestyle guide we call Inspired Home. From design to great food our goal is to provide you with relevant information you value. Truth of the matter is, without the heart and dedication of this talented and professional team, this publication would not be possible. Issue after issue, their creativity brings Inspired Home to your doorstep or area business. They inspire me.

Ashley F. Johnson Ashley Johnson loves her home city of Fargo. She works as a registered nurse at Sanford Medical Center and shares her happy home with her husband, 2 children and a rescue cat. She loves traveling with her family, cooking, entertaining and good wine. She can’t wait to show her children the world.

BAiley hoVlAnD A Concordia graduate currently studying law, Hovland is passionate about writing and social media. "Blending my obsession for interior design with writing and scrolling through the endless feed of tweets, pins, and Instagram posts is my idea of 'living the dream,'" she says. Hovland enjoys reading, coffee shops, DIY projects and working out.

GrAnVille WooD Wood is an international chef who has worked in London, Stockholm, Toronto, Vancouver, Palm Beach and Houston before moving to Fargo with wife Susie, a doctor with Sanford Health. Most recently he operated The Blue Goose Café in the Plains Art Museum.

DAynA Del VAl Del Val is the President & CEO of The Arts Partnership in Fargo, ND. She is a professional actor and passionate arts activist as well as mom to a fabulous violin playing engineer and wife to a plant cell wall biochemist. She enjoys travel, reading and high teas.

lAUren F. CArlson Carlson, a Fargo native and geologist, is a research assistant at Cornell University at the New York Agricultural Experiment Station, where she conducts field work and data collection for the study of shrub willow as bio mass. She enjoys cooking, baking, running, renaissance art and writing.

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Bernie eriCkson Specializing in helping his clients make small changes with maximum impact, Erickson is a residential real estate agent in Fargo-Moorhead.

TrAVis BeAUChene graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts from NDSU and a Master of Fine Arts from The George Washington University in DC. Beauchene who has painted for 14 years and taught photography for 8, also does creative marketing for businesses. Upon returning to the F/M area, he and wife Brittany founded STUDIO THREE BEAU. Beauchene currently resides in Detroit Lakes, MN.

Jill oCkhArDT BlAUFUss Photographing people, businesses, homes and families, Jill Ockhardt Blaufuss places an emphasis on creating technically flawless images, and capturing the spirit, character and emotion of the people and places she photographs. With a background in both photojournalism and video production, Jill also enjoys documentary style video creation for businesses and families.


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often called the “rainforests of the sea,” healthy coral reefs are home to at least 25 percent of all marine species. A complex underwater ecosystem, coral is found all over the world from the Aleutian Islands off the coast of Alaska to the tropical waters of the Caribbean Sea.

Color it


We’re in love

with Living Coral, Pantone’s Color of the Year — and what better time of the year than summer to explore this vibrant shade? The 2019 winner was chosen for its “animating and life-affirming” hue that “energizes and enlivens with a softer edge,” according to Leastrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute. Living Coral became a popular choice for its appearance in nature, symbolizing our innate need for “optimism and joyful pursuits.” The color of coral portrays awe-inspiring expressions of nature’s elusive displays beneath the sea. Emulating healthy coral reefs that provide shelter to a vividly colored and diverse ecosystem, Pantone’s Living Coral has made an impact. Hitting a responsive chord with industry and product development including fashion, home furnishings, industrial design and product packaging, this energizing hue rules.

Thibaut, the oldest wallpaper company in the United States, takes pride in its unique patterns from historic reproductions to classical, traditional and modern designs. Rich color and creative design marks their wall coverings, fabrics and upholstery. thibautdesign.com

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The soft pink undertones of Pantone Living Coral make it an ideal color choice for the bedroom. Calming and restful, it provides color that marries perfectly with the current popularity of neutrals as shown here.

Revamp a vintage dresser with paint for an easy-to-do project at home. Add fresh white for a crisp backdrop and highlight drawers with the beauty of Benjamin Moore Coral Reef 012. benjaminmoore.com

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Lively and positive yet calming, Living Coral was chosen by Bross in creating a new stand-out line of seats, armchairs and stools. Made in Italy, they create a contemporary and expressive look. bross-italy.com


The color of coral portrays



beautiful expressions of nature’s elusive displays beneath the sea.


Virtu a l me d ica l exa ms

Sanford Health + Tyto Care A perfect way to welcome guests is to greet them with vibrant color. Benjamin Moore’s Bird of Paradise 1305 creates beautiful drama that is an effortless and efficient way to add the color of coral to your home. benjaminmoore.com Bright and cheery coral, red, turquoise and lime green join forces to create this bohemian medallion pattern. This vibrant Ava oversized comforter and bedding set makes a great statement for a lake home retreat. overstock.com

Adding The Color Pantone’s Living Coral is generating a lot of buzz in the decor industry and it’s easy to understand why. Coral is the best of both worlds, with the energy of orange paired with the underlying softness of pink. This bold color is easy to love, but how can you incorporate it into your decor right now? It is more versatile and easier to add to your color palette than you might think. It is versatile. Living Coral, or any warm and vibrant color, pairs perfectly with cool or dark neutral color schemes such as navy blue, greige, grays, browns or black. INSPIREDHOMEMAGAZINE.COM

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With European elegance and craftsmanship comes the 2019 Living Coral tub by Devon & Devon. The shade joins 500 colors available for the ultimate in free-standing cast-iron bathtubs. devon-devon.com

In vibrant Living Coral, the small and mighty Google Home Mini is your hands-free help around the house. It’s a smart speaker with Goggle Assistance built in, so whenever you need help, it is by your side. store.google.com

Through ceramic sculpture, artist Casey Hochhalter investigates the interaction of nature within a complex ecosystem. Rich in color, the organic forms bring stunning vibrancy to a space. Dimorphic, 18 x 16 x 33 inches. eccegallery.com

Afraid of color? Try these highly absorbent deep coral towels with accent border to achieve a polished look in any bathroom. Coral in smaller doses like this bath set from IKEA will do the trick. ikea.com

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Coral is the best of both worlds, with the energy of orange paired with the underlying softness of pink.

We’ll keep an eye out for you!

Make a statement. Create a welcoming first impression for arriving guests. Give your front door a makeover with a cheerful coral paint color. It is easy to incorporate. Your bathroom color scheme is an effortless spot for new towels and accessories in Living Coral. In the living room, you probably already know that adding a throw pillow or artwork is the easiest way to update the color palette of the space, especially with a bold color like coral. Don’t be afraid to be more adventurous with a coral rug or even furniture. In the bedroom, if you’re not sure about committing to a vibrant accent color, start small with two or three throw pillows for your bed or a coral nightstand. If you love a bright and energizing bedroom, coral is a fun accent color for boho and mid-century modern styles.

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Wine Wisdom In the heat of summer, batch-style cocktails are a no-brainer. The recipes are usually simple and can be made ahead of time—perfect for boating or backyard entertaining! Your guests will be more than impressed when they are greeted with a warm welcome and a signature cocktail. If you are an avid reader of Inspired Home, you know that I am all about rosé, so I decided to share one of my favorite wine cocktails. Chelsey Malstrom Seven Sisters Spirits Detroit Lakes, Minnesota

Strawberry Rosé Spritzer Ingredients 1 pint strawberries, stems removed and sliced in half 1 750mL bottle of rosé wine 2 cups of soda water 1/3 cup Aperol 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice Lemon twist for garnish Place strawberries in a large pitcher and cover with the rosé. Chill for 3 hours so the strawberries can absorb all the rosé deliciousness! After 3 hours, remove the strawberries with a slotted spoon; set aside. Stir in soda water, Aperol and lemon juice. This drink is ready to go! Pour mix into ice-filled glasses; garnish with the wine strawberries and a lemon twist.

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The Big Chill products never disappoint. Their Living Coral series of retro-styled professional-grade kitchen appliances give you modern performance combined with timeless design. bigchill.com

We can count on KitchenAide to reign supreme in color. The Artisan stand mixer in Living Coral may not be for everyone — how about Aqua Sky, Pistachio, Boysenberry, Sea Glass, Raspberry Ice or Green Apple? kitchenaide.com

What is a Coral Reef? A

Tea kettle: Klarstein brings German ingenuity in design to create the world’s finest kitchen products. Fusing design and superior function with splashes of color, they are a must for the modern kitchen. Pictured: Coral tea kettle. klarstein.com

Color shy? Not quite convinced? Any room will be enhanced with a simple coral floral bouquet. Both you and your guests will benefit from its addition to your home. No matter where your comfort lies in the color range of this vibrant color, it undoubtedly possesses a soft absorbable energy that is friendly and connective between our homes and nature. This summer, embrace Living Coral in any way you can. Coral beach towels anyone? INSPIREDHOMEMAGAZINE.COM

coral reef is a diverse underwater ecosystem characterized by reefbuilding corals. Coral belongs to the class Anthozoa, which includes sea anemones and jellyfish. Unlike the latter, corals secrete hard carbonate exoskeletons that support and protect it. Often called the “rainforests of the sea,” they occupy less than 0.1% of all ocean areas but are “home” to at least 25% of all marine species. These include fish, mollusks, jellyfish, sea worms, crustaceans and echinoderms. Echinoderms include the well-known starfish, sea urchins, sand dollars, sea cucumbers, sea lilies and sponges. The bad news? Coral reefs are dying around the world. Under constant threat, 50% of the world’s coral reefs have “bleached” (died) in the last 30 years. According to Forbes and National Geographic, half of the largest reef system, the Great Barrier Reef, has bleached since 2016. Stretching 1,400 miles along Australia’s coast, ocean warming has destroyed the colorful algae, causing the coral to starve. The fragile reefs are sensitive to their water conditions. Excess nitrogen and phosphorus, rising temperatures,

Coral reefs are dying across the world's oceans. Under constant threat from man's activities, bleaching (dying) of coral reefs has occurred in more than 50 percent of the world's reef systems in less than 30 years.

human-created CO2 uptake from the atmosphere, overfishing, sunscreen use of swimmers and harmful land-use practices all contribute to the problem. The good news? Coral restoration is an ongoing process with U.S. government/ U.S. Coral Reef Taskforce and the ICIRI, the International Coral Reef Initiative, working to solve the devastation. Many other international nonprofits, such as the Coral Restoration Foundation, are committed to the support of natural recovery processes through large-scale cultivation, outplanting and monitoring of genetically diverse, reef-building corals worldwide.


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Growing a garden, changing a soul GARDEN


A breathtaking floral “river” of tulips and hyacinth meanders along a waterway through the Keukenhof Gardens near Amsterdam in the Netherlands. More than 7 million flowers adorn the park for only two months a year.

Mystery and magic go hand in hand in this fragrant “stream” of double tulips and hyacinth. Gardens and four pavilions are home to tulips, hyacinths, daffodils, orchids, roses, carnations, irises, lilies and many other flowers.


s a young girl, I grew up in a household where gardening and caring for flower beds each spring was as reliable a task as the sun rising and setting each day. To me, at the time, it was a chore and something I never quite understood. The older I became the more I appreciated my love and respect for the art of gardening as well as the holistic benefits it provides. Inspired Home magazine reached out to Jon Swegarden, a self-made gardener whose backyard — once a blank canvas — has evolved into a nature-kissed palette of color, a well-tended piece of art. Swegarden credits his mother and mother-in-law (as do I) for planting the seed for his love of outdoor botanicals. As parents of three, Swegarden and wife, Barb, once had a yard you’d expect for an active family of five. It was a space for children, with lots of room to run and play; flowers (though some were present) hadn’t made their grand entrance yet. Not until the Swegarden children INSPIREDHOMEMAGAZINE.COM

left the nest did the couple decide to create their backyard sanctuary. Together, they began the transformation — within their fenced backyard and, surprisingly, within themselves. Gardening is a very spiritual and almost transcendental act as much as it is physical and laborious. Swegarden explains, “It teaches you about patience and loss. The health benefits, both physical and mental, are tremendous, the produce is amazing and it’s not work because it’s something that’s loved. It’s also something that’s dynamic — you can add, move or delete. It stimulates all your senses in such a beautiful way, a way that’s quiet in this noisy world.” Tending to a garden, you are the sole caregiver and responsible for feeding, nurturing and caring for delicate life. To see flowers go from seedling to bloom is satisfying and rewarding in and of itself. Considering starting your own garden? Swegarden encourages people to start small. “It

Barb and Jon Swegarden stand in one of the many creeks at Keukenhof Gardens. Amidst the lush grass and the gardens’ famous flowers, stand centuries-old beech trees, strong and mighty.

A spring day on the Reie River in Brugge, Belgium, reveal the beauty of canals that define this beautiful city known as “Venice of the North.” The canals built between 1896 and 1907 connect Brugge to the North Sea.


The pergola here stands as a warm welcome to anyone entering the Swegarden sanctuary. “The garden is always open,” the Swegardens say.

The Swegardens have created a garden that is a place of devotion and peace for family and friends. Mother Mary amidst the splendid floral display welcomes all who stop.

can easily become an intimidating process to begin a new garden, but there is also beauty in it,” he says. “You will discover which flowers you are connected to and which ones do well in the environment you have.” Gardening can also be a very social activity. Working together with the earth to create something beautiful can be quite satisfying. “Get your hands in the dirt and take the risk. Create your own beauty and share it with others. Share your yard, garden, flowers, knowledge and wisdom,” Swegarden says. He also recommends buddying up with a

Tranquil and peaceful, an angel is nestled among the Swegarden’s garden of hosta plants. “This is a place of peace where angels dance,” reads the statuary.

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Combining unique plantings is a priority, making sure to create areas of floral arrangement that add interest and awe-inspiring beauty to the garden.

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Fourteen planted pots and a dozen hanging baskets of various greenery and flowers grace the Swegarden backyard haven.

A special garden “angel” at the Swegardens is granddaughter Harlowe. “Kids love the wonders and exploration of a garden,” says Jon. Here, Harlowe “stops and smells the coneflowers.”

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Combining unique plantings is a priority, making sure to create areas of floral arrangement that add interest and awe-inspiring beauty to the garden.

gardener like himself to split and share perennials, as they can be quite costly. The love of gardening has led the Swegardens on many adventures that have allowed them opportunities to view some of the loveliest botanical gardens in the world. They have traveled to the stunning 100-year-old Butchart Gardens, a World Heritage Site near Victoria on Vancouver Island, British Colombia. This spring, Keukenhof in South Holland in the Netherlands was their destination point. One of the world’s largest flower gardens, it is also known across the pond as the Garden of Europe. These majestic gardens house more than 7 million Dutch tulips and other flowers Holland is known for. It was there, in the presence of nature, that the Swegardens’ souls were filled, describing their experiences as “heavenly.” Explaining that gardening is a true love, Swegarden adds, “There’s a spiritual connection for me, something Divine. There is also a sense of accomplishment like a writer, movie director or chef has when completing their work. My palette is just different.” We live in a fast-paced, demanding world. The pressures of society and ever-changing duties and obligations can sometimes leave us feeling exhausted and overwhelmed. Perhaps it is more important now than ever to slow down the cadence of our lives. Get lost in the quiet … look around you … observe the life that is quietly growing all around you. Find peace in your surroundings. Stop. Smell those roses.


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R The Temple of Athena Nike, paying homage to the goddess of victory, looks out over the city of Athens.

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olling the glass from side to side, the pale golden wine released fine aromas of citrus, local herbs and, perhaps most surprisingly, pine. Retsina, a wine with a lifespan of at least 2,000 years, is a classic Greek wine infused with resin from Aleppo pine trees. Its crisp, refreshing flavor rests lightly on the tongue, bringing with it a medium acidity and slightly bitter flavor. Chelsey Malstrom, a wine sommelier from the Midwest, brought the glass up for another sip, taking in the resinous flavor. “I never gravitated toward it naturally,” Malstrom said of Greek wine. “I just ordered a couple bottles to have on hand, a few classics to add some variety; but until I went to Greece, I hadn’t invested much time into Greek wine.” Manager of 7 Sisters, a local INSPIREDHOMEMAGAZINE.COM


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Home Builders The Greek adventurer herself: Malstrom looks toward the camera as she sips a Mediterranean Sunset cocktail at Hytra Restaurant and Bar in Athens.

wine and spirits establishment in Minnesota lakes country near Detroit Lakes, Malstrom had flown to Europe to participate in the planning of her uncle’s wedding to a Greek neurosurgeon. Although they had already hired an Athens event planner for the big day, Malstrom’s uncle and his fiance wanted Malstrom there to bounce ideas off of and to make sure every detail of the wedding felt perfect. And, as a sommelier, also known as a wine steward, Malstrom was the perfect choice for a taste tester. “My perception of Greek wine changed right after my very first taste. I was surprised by their whites and bubblies and fell in love with the crisp, light wines. The reds were a bit more serious,” Malstrom said. “And, with the fresh herbs you could find growing almost everywhere, you could taste hints of thyme or lavender, almost like the presence of more fresh herbs imparted itself into the wine.” Malstrom traveled from Athens to Mykonos with her uncle and uncle-to-be, taking in not only the wine but also the cuisine, culture and history of Greece. “The gyros were to die for,” said Malstrom, “but there wasn’t as much olive and feta featured as I expected. That’s apparently a more Americanized take on Mediterranean.” Desserts were also different from what Malstrom expected. Often with some kind of sour cherry jelly, the sweets were more often floral, acting as a palate cleanser rather than a filling course at the end of a meal. INSPIREDHOMEMAGAZINE.COM


of Fargo-Moorhead

@Home Builders Association of Fargo-Moorhead

hbafm.com INSPIRED HOME | 31

The sun sets over the Acropolis, creating a brilliant background for the illuminated city and ruins.

Corey and Yannis, the happy couple, pose for a picture at their wedding’s welcome dinner in Athens.

And the Greek people — Malstrom was so impressed at how kind and overaccommodating everyone was. Each shop emitted an old family heritage feeling. The locals wanted to hear where you were from,

what you were doing in Greece, your whole story. “I love how they essentially stopped time for family,” Malstrom said. "They have huge dinners together, where they sit around the table and make time for one another.”


Malstrom was able to take a bus tour of Athens at night, highlighting the unique nightlife of the metropolis.

“The ruins were breathtaking — ancient, strong, full of history. The Acropolis gave me chills,” she said. Athens offered a modern perspective of the Greek life — with towering skyscrapers, city lights and ancient ruins


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Malstrom and her uncle, Corey, tour the Acropolis, surrounded by hundreds of other sightseers.

The legendary odeon of Herodes Atticus, a stone theater structure from 161 AD, sits on the slope of the Acropolis.

Roman Emperor Hadrian, known as one of the Five Good Emperors, is immortalized as a statute in the Ancient Agora of Athens.

Malstrom, accompanied by some of her fellow wedding-goers, pauses for a photo in front of the famous Acropolis.



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The city looked out toward the cerulean blue waters of the Aegean Sea, a view broken only by the rising cliffs on either side of the horizon.



From wine tasting to Michelinstar restaurants to the wedding’s dance floor, Malstrom enjoyed every moment spent in Greece.

After a wedding that Hera, — the Greek goddess of marriage — would have adored, wedding attendees dance the night away.

overlooking the busy metropolis — while Mykonos featured the classic crisp white buildings that climb the cragged oceanside. The city of Mykonos looked out toward the cerulean blue waters of the Aegean Sea, a view broken only by the rising cliffs on either side of the horizon. Malstrom was welcomed by this exact view once more when she traveled back to Greece for her uncle’s wedding. Accompanied by her entire family, she made an eager way through luxurious meals, varieties of Greek wine and historical sites, experiencing the Grecian cities anew. And her favorite part of her Greek getaway? “Sharing those memories with my family in such a beautiful country.”

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A gray brick pattern surrounds the edge of this patio that boasts a beautiful and natural looking slate pattern.

38 | JULY/AUGUST 2019

tamped concrete patios give you a vast array of decorative options not possible with other patio materials. The patio can be poured in any shape or size to fit the space, and you can choose from many options of realistic stone and brick patterns to stunning woodgrained textures. Using stains, powdered pigments and antiquing agents, a trusted contractor can color your patio to look identical to natural stone or customize the color to complement your home and specific landscape. Integrating your patio design with a decorative border in a contrasting color and pattern adds yet another level of charming beauty. From the high-end look of natural stone for your patio to incorporating a fire pit or seating, concrete creates beauty and affordable practicality to your back yard living spaces.


This lake home patio floor displays a seamless texture, old granite. It was created using a tan colored concrete and coachella sand colorant. The perimeter border has a walnut stone style pattern. Accent colors of storm gray, deep charcoal and russet were applied to create depth. Decorative concrete reveals itself in many textures and patterns on this patio. From sleek seating with a stone styled base to the weathered gray wood-look flooring, concrete creates distinction.

A seamless texture floor using walnut, storm gray, old granite and coachella sand colors add dimension and beauty to this patio. A brick border and center on the floor create extra design interest.

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Express Yourself

Design | Build | New Construction | Remodel 6120 53rd Avenue South


Fargo, North Dakota


Artistry, Architecture, and Family

A black industrial cable stairway brings urban flair, paired with crisp white walls, rainbow-colored wooden coat pegs and a unique entry door.

Staircase views from the great room show a blend of architectural interest, combining modern features, industrial interest and antique accents.



Elegant glass cabinetry, striking light fixtures and a shimmering black-and-white glass backsplash combine visually and masterfully for a beautifully designed space.

A Fargo couple builds upon the blessing and heritage of family.

BY WANDA M. PERKINS | Photography by Travis Beauchene, Studio Three Beau


The spacious stainless steel island is a focal point in the kitchen. Framed by sparkling overhead chandeliers, lighted cabinetry, stainless steel appliances and an old-fashioned red gas stove, the island is a gathering hub for family and guests.

44 | JULY/AUGUST 2019

hey met during an investigation in Los Angeles. Ed, a helicopter pilot with the Pasadena Police Department, and Kara, a U.S. government special agent for Homeland Security, shared similar interests. The couple fell in love, married and had two children: a son, Grayson, 16, and a daughter, Ryan, 14. Following Ed’s retirement as an officer, they returned to Fargo for one important reason. Family. “I’ve lived in many places,” Kara recalls. “The weather doesn’t matter, just as long as family is there.” To accommodate all the features and design elements they desired in a home, they chose their preferred location and built a spacious 6,700-square-foot home with five bedrooms and four baths. “We picked the

Rocking Horse development because we could incorporate exactly what we wanted in the design,” Kara adds. “And there was nothing like this area in Fargo.” Merging Ed’s preference for an urban and modern design with Kara’s love of antiques became a personalized combination of a modern, industrial farmhouse. Building began in 2018 by Luxury Custom Homes (coowners Ed and Kara Careaga, Jeremy Wallace and Nate Branson) with completion in the spring of 2019. Kara utilized her art degree to weave in artistic interior designs and furnishings. She selected circular mirrors in the baths to coordinate with fascinating tile patterns. Her love of family and antiques motivated her to purchase a stainless steel


An overview of main living areas shows thoughtful design, clean lines, high ceilings and an open flow to living spaces.

the dining table with stainless steel chairs overlooks an amazing pool area. Convenient tuck-away sliding doors allow views of the pool during entertaining.



“I’ve lived in many places. The weather doesn’t matter, just as long as family is there.” Kara Careaga

Underneath an architectural dormer, an arched roofline over a showy red door welcomes guests indoors. Stacked stone on the porch with white columns against gray siding creates abundant character and curb appeal.

46 | JULY/AUGUST 2019

Kara Careaga spotted this door while in Belgium and snapped a photo. It was one of the wish-list items she desired to incorporate in their new home.

Kara and Ed Careaga pose for a photo in front of Ed’s favorite architectural feature, the incredible staircase and entrance.


Mellow and wise, 12-year-old Colfax shows off the Careaga family rules of the home. The dining table with stainless steel chairs overlooks an amazing pool area. Convenient tuck-away sliding doors allow views of the pool during entertaining. A mud room keeps this busy family organized with coat hooks, storage cabinetry and a sitting bench. A dog-sized pocket door keeps doggies corralled. White-and-black tile flooring and a paned white door give their canines plenty of light and outdoor views. Cherry red cabinetry in the laundry room complements a gray patterned tile flooring. Handy sorting baskets keeps laundry in tow for laundry days.

vintage medicine cabinet to display collectibles in the great room. Stacked nostalgic suitcases became nightstands in bedrooms and hideaway storage pieces. In th e ma st er clo set, sh e ad d ed h er grandmother’s rectangular mirror and a thrift store chair, painted both silver and then accented them with a pair of metal suitcases. Rainbow-colored wood coat hooks and a dramatic red entry door, modeled after a photograph Kara took in Belgium, create a welcoming entrance with unique artistry. The custom red door is color-matched to the Viking gas kitchen oven. Clear and ceramic kitchen backsplash tiles give a threedimensional iridescent sheen, coordinating beautifully with a stainless steel 8.5-foot by 5-foot island, brushed nickel hardware, stainless steel appliances and a stunning pair of overhead chandeliers. A farm table with a stainless insert was crafted by Grain D e s i g n s u s i n g w o o d f r o m K a r a’s grandfather’s farm. Slider doors tuck away within the wall to expose a sun-drenched pool area. Cabinetry and shelving frame the porcelain-tiled fireplace with a bolted, INSPIREDHOMEMAGAZINE.COM

Surrounded by exterior windows, the pool oasis features fountains, incredible lighting and comfortable sitting places to relax and refresh.


Kara and Ed’s master bedroom is bathed in soft light, with pale yellow walls, a tray ceiling and distressed laminate flooring.

White subway tiling surrounds a slipper tub and a rectangular glass shower. Gorgeous tile flooring in blue and gray create stunning contrast.

48 | JULY/AUGUST 2019

A striking black, gray and white tile pattern in the hallway leads to a poolside bath.


distressed mantel, lending a blend of urban, modern and traditional design in the Careaga’s great room. “The staircase is a favorite design feature of mine,” Ed notes. “It adds dramatic architectural interest to our home.” A twirling ceiling fan, reminiscent of his days as a helicopter pilot, perfectly suits the room as it is viewed from the second floor. Semi-opaque glass doors with crystal doorknobs, a burnished bronze and jewel ceiling fan and matching pendant lights in the master bedroom add nighttime shimmer to peaceful décor colors and neutral furnishings. In the master bath, white subway tile surrounds a slipper tub on cement tile. A glass shower with gray circular tiles shows attention to design detail throughout their home. Fellow dog lovers at heart, the family resides with three rescued canines, each with its own endearing personality. Colfax, a 12-year-old Basset Hound, enjoys sneaking a nap (or belly rub) whenever possible. “She’s Ed’s Velcro girl,” Kara claims. Seven-year-old Memphis believes she’s the family favorite with her friendly, tail-wagging exuberance. But Mr. Tuffington, a cross of all the finest doggie breeds, knows he’s definitely the smartest! All three cherished canines sleep together on the masters’ bed, unless they require quiet time together in their personally designed doggie area. A pint-sized sliding door and black cabinetry stores all their favorite foods and treats. When muddy paws occur, a quick trip down the intricate tilepatterned hallway to the poolside powder room provides a quick, convenient paw wash. Downstairs, the family room is a favorite area to view movies on the 123-inch screen with 4K Sony projector. Comfortable leather reclining sofas and loveseats are perfect for watching a movie or the big game. A custom shuffleboard table, pool table and spacious bar area is great for entertaining. “We wanted a place for friends and family to gather, more space where kids could play and have their friends over,” Ed explains. “It took over a year to build our home, largely because of weather delays and back-ordered hallway tile. However, when it was all finished, as the project manager and homeowner, it brought a real sense of accomplishment.” Yes, like the pillow on their sofa reads, the Careaga family home is filled with kisses, wagging tails, wet noses and much love.


the glass shower with subway tile is perfect for poolside use and a great place to wash off dirty doggie paws

A theater space with a pool table, shuffleboard and bar area is a wonderful family gathering place. Comfortable leather theater seating makes this a favorite entertaining area.

CONTRIBUTORS: Luxury Custom Homes: Builder | Project Manager: Ed Careaga | Interior Design: Kara Careaga | Rudh Entertainment: Sound and Security | Jenson Painting | Syverson Tile & Stone | K & D Electric | Straightline Designs: Stair Railing & Island Top | Spaulding Stone: Counter Tops | Olson’s Pools & Spa | Outdoor Concepts: Pool & Garage Flooring | Plato Cabinets: Cabinetry | J & J Heating and Air | Swenson Masonry LLC | Grain Designs: Dining Table | Home & Hearth: Fireplace | Furniture For Less: Furniture and Decor


BRIGHTEN UP YOUR BACKYARD Deckmasters Lake Melissa clients came to them wanting to redesign and redefine their unusable deck space. They wanted an area to sunbathe, shade to dine in, and space below the deck protected from the elements.


Deckmasters designed the deck accordingly, using color coordinating, low maintenance decking, pergolas, and cable rail. The homeowners added bright pops of color with flowers, rugs, pillows, and a fun hammock. Stop into Deckmasters Indoor Outdoor Showroom and start a conversation with one of their design experts. DECKMASTERS SHOWROOM 5507 53RD AVE S, FARGO 701.232.4001

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Breaking the Mold:

Emily Williams-Wheeler BY BAILEY HOVLAND| Photography by Haley Frost Creative

Titled “Coalescence,” this painting is a combination of acrylic paint and charcoal, a picturesque representation of the merging of elements to form one whole.

52 | JULY/AUGUST 2019


“Artists are pretty observant and take notice of the little details. And, over all my years of prepping to be an engineer, I can combine my more functional and analytical side with my creativity. It’s the ideal match because, well, it’s me.”


uman brains seem wired for categorization. We create boxes that create structure for our chaotic universe, drawing distinctive lines to organize our lives. Our perception of ourselves and others revolves around these boxes, breaking down every interaction and relationship and compartmentalizing them — logical, irrational, bubbly, sarcastic, talkative, shy and on and on. But Emily Williams-Wheeler doesn’t like to limit herself to one category. Williams-Wheeler started as a STEM girl, dreaming of a job as an engineer at a time when young women were being encouraged to enter the overwhelmingly male fields of science, technology, engineering and math. “I wanted to break that glass ceiling,” she said. Her sixth-grade ambitions followed her to college at Iowa State, where she first learned her passion might be elsewhere. “I figured out that just because I was good at math didn’t mean I enjoyed it.” And one day, Williams-Wheeler found herself in the school of design, where she quickly discovered a home. After graduating with a degree in interior design, she began working in commercial spaces, like churches and schools. “I resisted anyone comparing me to a decorator because that didn’t describe what I did. I was always about functionality. So, when people do say, ‘Well, interior design is arty,’ they miss the whole engineering side of it,” she said. When she had her first child, WilliamsWheeler decided to leave interior design and stay at home. “I wanted to be at home with the kids,” she said, “but I couldn’t stand not contributing to our livelihood.” She worked a few different jobs, but none of them seemed to right. “Eventually I wrote and illustrated INSPIREDHOMEMAGAZINE.COM

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“Amid the Confusion” features wax and mixed media on a wood panel. Wax’s durable qualities allow it to stand the test of time, preserving the art for years to come.

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Under Deck


Williams-Wheeler’s use of bold colors, lines with purpose and broad paint strokes allow viewers an intimate oasis within the abstract form.

six gift books that were sold internationally. But I really didn’t have much artistic training at all. I took two art classes: ceramics and calligraphy, and that’s it.” Yet art seems to be the profession that finally stuck. And it’s not surprising given Williams-Wheeler’s background. “My mother was an artist, a hippie before hippies were hippies,” she said with a laugh. Williams-Wheeler’s medium of choice is always changing: acrylic paint, graphite, watercolor, encaustics (beeswax and resin), suspended wire sculptures, and even cold wax and oil. And that’s the way she likes it. “At one time, an artist who was giving me coaching tips early on said, ‘You need to find a look and only do that look so people know who you are,’” Williams-Wheeler said. “I resisted that idea because if people don’t recognize me for that then at least they are still recognizing and appreciating my art.” With a studio in Moorhead, Williams-Wheeler is currently working on a few 3-D projects as well as teaching classes for both kids and adults. Her work, although ever changing, is always full of color and life. The multifaceted artist has also resisted the trope of what it means to be an artist. Her STEM background lends itself to her work and her business, allowing her to be more than the stereotypical artist — a wild, unorganized mess of color and creativity. “I think artists are problem solvers,” Williams-Wheeler said. “It’s amazing how intelligent artists are and how they solve problems with what they’ve got.” She thinks the bridge she’s built between her more scientific side and her more artistic side allows her to be a better business person — and INSPIREDHOMEMAGAZINE.COM



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Williams-Wheeler’s paint strokes reveal her thought process as she develops each painting with creativity and intentionality.

Encaustic paints come from filtered beeswax, resin and pigments. The everlasting qualities of wax paint preserve the painting from aging.

more successful. “Artists are pretty observant and take notice of the little details. And even though my dream of being an engineer began at 12 years of age, I can combine my more functional and analytical side with my creativity. It’s the ideal match because, well, it’s me.



4401 12th Ave. N 56 | JULY/AUGUST 2019


Fargo, ND 58102



Enjoy Life

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individually owned twin homes | less upkeep & maintenance one-level plan high quality | moderately priced | quiet choice lots

OPEN HOUSE View this home Sunday July 14, 2pm-4pm & Monday July 15, 6pm-8pm ONLY 3 UNITS REMAINING One ‐ 3 Bedroom Unit Two ‐ 2 Bedroom Units


2 or 3 bedroom units available including den, custom cabinets, granite tops, fireplace, extra storage, lawn sprinkler and wheelchair friendly floor plans.

Can I select my carpet, appliances and paint colors? Yes, within cost allowances provided. Will FEMA require flood insurance? No. The property is above base flood elevation established by FEMA. Is there a home owners association? No. There are no extra homeowner dues or restrictions. We can assist you in arranging for lawn mowing or snow removal.

A Brekke Custom Homes Project 3333 Maple Leaf Loop South, Fargo From 52nd Ave. S (East of I-29), go south on 31 St. S. After about 1 mile, turn left on Maple Leaf Loop south.

701.587.1291 wildstone.development@gmail.com


Call of the




t’s interesting that all bodies of water in Midwest Lakes Country share the same name. And that name is “THE.” “I’m going to THE Lake!” “Are you going to THE Lake?” “We’re thinking of buying a place at THE Lake!” “Oh, you’ll definitely love THE Lake! We wish we had bought a place at THE Lake years ago!” After a lifetime of listening to how wonderful life is at THE Lake, I decided it was time to see what all the fuss was about and rent a cabin at THE Lake for a month this summer.

60 | JULY/AUGUST 2019


My knowledge of outdoor life involves a vague recollection of dad’s Field and Stream magazine and maybe even one actually called Outdoor Life — and that’s about it. Credit card in hand, I headed out to the local sporting goods emporium. I picked up a fishing rod package because I just love lobster bisque and cedar plank salmon and couldn’t wait to prepare my own “catch of the day.” Not having the confidence to drive a fishing boat, I got some giant hip waders that came up to my armpits and looked like rubber Fred Mertz pants, an army green hat with a big floppy brim and scooped up a handful of fishing lures in the clearance bin to bedazzle the brim of my new fisherman’s hat. After shopping around for a one-month rental at THE Lake that didn’t cost the same as three months mortgage payments at THE House in Fargo, we found the perfect one-bedroom cabin complete with a stone fireplace, a canoe and a fishing dock. We stuffed our SUV with everything we could think of. Blow-up water toys, a month’s worth of canned goods. A snake bite kit. Bug spray. Box wine. Bathroom tissue. Extra sunglasses. A filet knife for preparing the lobster and salmon I’d be catching every afternoon. An inflatable dinghy to tow behind in case the canoe capsized as well as bright orange life jackets like sofa cushions with a hole in the middle and white nylon waist straps. Safety first. And we were off. Our cabin at THE Lake was just like the one in On Golden Pond. A tiny one-bedroom perched on a death-defying cliff with a rickety rotted wood staircase going down to a tiny beach with a matching rickety rotted wood dock. It was perfect! First things first: Unload the car, unpack enough canned goods to feed a couple for six months, which is kind of ridiculous because the only canned food product I eat is campfire-style pork and beans. And tuna. I’d be catching my own salmon every day for the next month, so why bother with the tuna? I was determined to get all my gear down to the shore in one trip, so I loaded my fishing rod, my filet knife and cutting board, bug spray, sunscreen, snakebite kit, a can of pork and beans, a can opener and a Sterno fuel cell in case I got hungry all into the legs of my giant Fred Mertz rubber pants and carefully made my way to the water. It was warm, the sky was clear and THE Lake was very quiet. I remember the rubber pants were hotter than hot and decided tighty-whiteys and nothing else would be INSPIREDHOMEMAGAZINE.COM

For more information visit



My knowledge of outdoor life involves a vague recollection of dad’s “Field and Stream” magazine and maybe even one actually called “Outdoor Life” and that’s about it.

62 | JULY/AUGUST 2019

the appropriate foundation garment for an afternoon of lobster and salmon fishing. I applied a toxic mix of sunscreen and bug spray from the chest up, put on my fishing lure-bedazzled fisherman’s hat, stripped down to my tighty-whiteys, climbed into my giant rubber pants, grabbed my fishing rod and hit the water. The shoreline was beautiful, with a hard sand bottom and clear water. I cast my line out and got stuck in some cattails and decided to go out just a little further and see if I could avoid them. I don’t know the natural habitat of lobsters and salmon, but I’m pretty sure I never read anything about them lurking in cattails. The bottom was getting a little mucky and it was getting harder to walk because my feet were sinking further and further down in the muck. I tried casting again but doing it more like a baseball pitcher and really winding up for it. It didn’t go as planned as I released the fishing rod just like a baseball and sent the whole works an impressive five feet in front of me. I pulled one foot out of the muck, ready to take a step forward, lost my balance and tipped over just enough for my rubber pants to start filling with water. And you can probably guess the rest. Those rubber pants were taking on water faster than the Titanic and if I wasn’t going down, I’d have to unhook the suspenders and abandon ship. Which I did. I grabbed my sunscreen, bug spray, snakebite kit, pork and beans, can opener and can of Sterno, mustered as much dignity as I could in my wet tighty-whiteys and prepared to make my way up the rickety stairs. “How’s the fishing?” I heard from somewhere in the woods next door. It appears I was being watched. “Uhhhh, yeah, it seems the lobster and the salmon aren’t biting today,” I replied. Dead silence. “Um, you know those are cold, saltwater creatures, right?” (Nervous laugh) “Hahahaha, yeah, I was just messing with you! I’m going to go back to the cabin and get cleaned up. Why don’t you come over for a cold one in half-anhour?” And, thus began the other part of life at THE Lake — making friends and telling stories sitting on a dock, watching the sun sink into the water. Wishing you a summer filled with late sunsets, good friends and fantastic memories. INSPIREDHOMEMAGAZINE.COM




Corey Krueger

Kim Krueger Tehan

Jimmy Tehan


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Is it




e have all heard the old adage, dog is man’s best friend, but have you ever wondered if man is dog’s best friend? We spoke to our pet guru and local veterinarian Dr. Amy Anderson to do a little digging to discover whether our dogs are as loyal as they seem or is their seemingly unending affection and faithfulness only a dog dish deep? Dr. Anderson delves into the inner workings of the canine psyche and acknowledges that while we are providing our pets with the foundations of Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs ( food, water and shelter), their adoration of the two-legged counterparts in their lives does stem from more than our physical ability to keep them alive and well.



The truth is, dogs are emotionally aware and empathetic creatures, and all you have to do is look into their eyes

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to realize that. In reference to Maslow’s theory, Dr. Anderson comments, “That doesn’t mean they don’t care about us or miss us when we are gone. I think the very best way to bond with a pet, no matter what kind it is, is to be their main caretaker.” Dogs do tend to have a closer bond to those who routinely feed them and let them out, likely because they are the people they trust most, just as small children do not blindly trust every stranger they encounter. Do not let the strong correlation between food and friend discourage you, however, as the fact of the matter is that dogs do clearly display a closeness and emotional connection to those who care for and love them. By nature, dogs are pack animals and do rely on the safety of those who surround them — owners and families — for their daily needs. Dr. Anderson explains that certain breeds can play an important role in the genetic predisposition as well as the personality of your pet. She goes on to explain that there are many small breed dogs, Chihuahuas come to mind, that are very protective of their owners and want absolutely nothing to do with anyone else, even other individuals in the same household. Some of the large breeds that are innately protective, such as German Shepherds, are also very skeptical of other humans not in their “circle,” while other breeds seem to think everyone they meet is their very best friend. Because, unlike humans, dogs cannot voice their needs or emotional concerns, it is very important to pay attention to the physical signs they manifest as this is their only means of communication. Dr. Anderson explains that pets to do not go to the bathroom on INSPIREDHOMEMAGAZINE.COM

the floor because they are mad at you; they do it because they need to go and no one was there to let them out. She also remarks that dogs are not destroying furniture and chewing up the couch because they are “vigilantes” with a vendetta against the human race. They do these things because they are alone and unsupervised or because they have too much pent-up energy. Just as we must pay attention to the physical cues they give us as signs of their displeasure or stress, it is also pertinent to understand the cues they give us when they need some emotional support and comfort. “Most dogs are constantly seeking attention and approval from their owners. They want to know they are being good or be reassured they are safe. They often bump their human’s hand for a pat or energetically sit by their owners, anticipating what might be coming next: Is it time to eat? Time for a walk? Time to play?” The truth is, dogs are emotionally aware and empathetic creatures and all you need to do is look into their eyes to realize that. Yes, they rely on us to provide them with everything they need and because of this a great bond is created, but that physiological relationship grows into a fiercely loyal emotional bond as the mutual trust grows. With the great responsibility that comes with caring for your canine, comes a great reward in the form of sloppy kisses, head nuzzles and tail wags — and a lifetime of unending love and adoration.

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Wine Wisdom S

Chelsey Malstrom, Seven Sisters Spirits, Detroit Lakes, Minnesota

ummer is made for sipping, and why not a beautiful sangria? This is the perfect batch-style cocktail that is sure to please a crowd. I love using frozen fruit, especially for outdoor entertaining. This recipe is one of my favorites because it’s fruity and refreshing without being overly sweet. If you like to play around with flavors, don’t be afraid to start with your favorite dry wine and layer fruits, sparkling waters, and light mix of brandy or flavored spirits. I have decided to feature Torres Ibéricos Rioja because it is a beautiful Tempranillo, the traditional wine used in sangria. Pairing it with brandy and orange liqueur, also from Spain, makes me feel like I am treating myself to a cocktail in Barcelona!

Enjoy! Chelsey Malstrom


(750 ml) bottle of Altos Ibéricos Crianza 2014 Tempranillo

½ cup Torres 10 Brandy ½ cup Torres Orange Liqueur 2

tablespoons fresh lime juice

½ cup fresh orange juice ¼ cup sugar as needed orange slices lemon slices apple slices 2

cups watermelon cubes


(750 ml) bottle of sparkling wine or Sprite

Combine all ingredients but the sparkling wine or Sprite in a large container for 24 hours. When ready to serve add ice and sparkling wine or sprite and enjoy!


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Celebrate the summer season with the brilliant colors and nutrition that fresh fruit and vegetables provide. Fresh spinach, avocados, blood oranges, pomegranate seeds, garbanzo beans and quinoa — all the ingredients you need to create a proteinpacked meal. toss with a simple citrus dressing of olive oil, orange juice and zest, salt and pepper to taste. Enjoy!

Summer grilling —

it’s not always about the meat


Story & Photography BY CHEF GRANVILLE WOOD

t’s about salad. That statement to some would be sacrilege because to most of us summer is all about grilling a big steak, some sausage or chicken. It seems that’s the summer menu and the only way to cook after a long, hard winter. I get it, but having spent years in the South, grilling is commonplace. Southerners don’t buy their briquettes by the bag; they buy them like you would buy wood for your winter fireplace. Call out the phrase “Grill God” at any social gathering and every man will turn around. To say that “Grill God” salad is for dinner will bring forth a petulant child wondering, “What did I do wrong?” What could possibly replace a

juicy 12-ounce rib eye? How about a nice salad of the summer’s bounty of fresh fruits, lettuces and vegetables? Every time I make myself a salad rich with vegetables, I ask myself afterward why don’t I do this more often? A well-made salad can be equally as satisfying as steak but here’s a littleknown fact: Lettuce has a god. Without getting too deep in details, the ancient Egyptians regarded lettuce, romaine especially, to be an aphrodisiac and a booster of one’s libido. Hence, they created a deity named Min, the god of romaine. So, men, next time you order a Caesar salad rest assured there is some weight behind that decision as there is technically a “salad god.” Compromise is not a part of the social

conversation these days, so how about a culinary compromise? My not-so-new approach is to blend grilling together with salads to make a well-balanced meal of both protein and whatever else turns your taste buds on. When it comes to salad, there are no rules. Salad has a preconceived notion of wilted iceberg lettuce, unripe out-of-season tomatoes and limp red onion with a blob of Thousand Island dressing plopped on top. This does not have to be the case as there are so many options that don’t even appear to be salads as we think of them. Salmagundi is a 17th-century English expression denoting a salad dish, “as comprised of everything and anything.”

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What could be better than incorporating fresh vegetables from your garden or farmers market? Pictured here is "Gardner's Delight," fresh vegetables grilled and charred to perfection accompanied with goat cheese and basil oil.


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You would be surprised what you can make into a “salad” based on leftovers and other items lurking in the shadows of your mammoth icebox. How many times have you rutted through your fridge and put together a lettuce-based salad and the rest of the fixings comprised of, say, leftovers? Some leftover bacon from breakfast, a boiled potato and some green beans from last night’s dinner, some grilled chicken and — oh, there’s a boiled egg. Sounds good already! Toss it with some buttermilk dressing, throw in some croutons and a drizzle of Siracha sauce and dinner is served. This is referred to as a “kitchen sink” salad. A salad can be warm or a combination of warm and cold. Look what happened to Caesar Cardini’s now-famous Caesar, which was born out of necessity in the 1920s when his namesake restaurant ran out of ingredients for regular menu salads. He acted and, unbeknownst to him at the time, created an instant classic that has been adulterated over the years (what would the INSPIREDHOMEMAGAZINE.COM

A full meal summer deal. The "Picnic on a Plate" boasts barbecued chicken with fresh corn salsa, potato salad, broccoli slaw, sweet peaches and boiled eggs.

Salad has a pre-conceived notion of wilted iceberg lettuce, un-ripe outof-season tomatoes, limp red onion with a blob of thousand island dressing plopped on top. Salad God say?) to becoming probably the most popular lunch salad ever: the Grilled Chicken Caesar. If done right, it is a good salad. Don’t misunderstand me; I still grill steaks and fish on a regular basis. I love cooking over an open fire. When I do grill, I grill for tomorrow as well. Why waste the fire, right? I grill chicken and beef to be used in salads, pastas or panni, or lay some smoky aromas on mushrooms for a risotto later in the week. Think about the days when everything revolved around the open hearth — always a pot of water on, potatoes shoved in the hot coals to roast, a joint of beef INSPIREDHOMEMAGAZINE.COM

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slow cooking over the fire. That was life back then. Now you flip a switch on a gas grill or a smoker. I like the routine of an open fire and the steps it involves — lighting the fire, waiting for it to get just right to char the vegetables and put them aside and stoke the fire to get the heat back up. Put on the meat, chicken or fish, get the right amount of sear, and then move it off the flame to let it cook to the desired temperature. Let it rest while you whisk together the olive oil and appropriate acid, touch of sea salt and your choice of seasonings. Lightly dress the greens and fresh herbs with the grilled vegetables and plate with slices of your perfect medium-rare steak, juicy chicken, shrimp or flaky salmon. Enjoy with a tart sauvignon blanc or smooth malbec, or better yet a sparkling french rose. Then a quick tidy up while the fire cools a bit to grill bananas for the Grilled Bananas Foster. It’s summer — enjoy the good things in life.


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Two of my top four favorite dressings, which also includes blue cheese and, believe it or not, Thousand Island.

Achieve Beautiful Gardens with tips from Master Gardener, Tony Randall

CREAMY MUSTARD VINAIGRETTE An elegant dressing for greens or grilled vegetables

Green Goddess Dressing A favorite classic dressing that can be used as a dressing or a dip. INGREDIENTS: 1 cup flat leaf parsley, chopped

INGREDIENTS: 1 egg yolk

1 cup spinach, chopped

2 Tbs. Dijon mustard

4 Tbs. fresh chives, minced

3 Tbs. balsamic vinegar

3 Tbs. fresh tarragon, minced

1 Tbs. lemon juice

1 Tbs. fresh basil, minced

1 garlic clove, minced

1 garlic clove, minced

1 small shallot, minced

2 anchovy filets, rinsed and minced

1 cup vegetable oil

3 Tbs. fresh lemon juice

½ cup virgin olive oil Kosher salt and fresh black pepper to taste METHOD: Place the first six ingredients in a blender and blend. With blender on, slowly pour in the oils. If too thick, add 1 or 2 tablespoons water. Season with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.

1 Tbs. Champagne vinegar ½ cup vegetable oil ½ Hellman’s mayonnaise Kosher salt and fresh black pepper METHOD: Place all the ingredients, except the oil and mayonnaise, in a blender and blend well. With blender on, slowly add the oil. Remove from blender and put into a bowl. Stir in the mayonnaise until well incorporated. Season with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.

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Lavender Love Story and Photography BY LAuren ferragut Carlson

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his time of year, I get a lot of inspiration by looking out my back sunroom windows. The flower gardens are in full bloom and the vegetables are ripe for picking. Pops of peach from roses, the pink hues from cosmos and bursts of bright red from tomatoes surround me. Since I’ve started gardening, I’ve always incorporated lavender. It is great for pollinators, color, long blooms and that intoxicating smell when the breeze blows it just right. It wasn’t until a few years ago that I started taking it out of the garden and into my kitchen. I started drying it and using it in candles, soaps and, of course, baking. Lavender is simple to process. Just after blooming, harvest by cutting the stems, rinse well, and hang or lay flat to dry. That’s it! It will only take a couple of days, depending on the humidity. My favorite way to use it is in the perfect summer cake: fig and lavender cake with goat cheese frosting. If you don’t have lavender in your garden, or even a garden, don’t let that stop you! You can purchase dried lavender online, at specialty stores and some grocery stores. This cake is simple to make. My favorite component about this cake (besides the lavender) is the dried figs, mostly their seeds. The fig itself is chewy but the seeds explode like tiny fireworks in your mouth. One baking tip for chopping the figs is to first coat them in flour. This will help the figs from sticking together (and on your knife) when you chop them. It will also hinder the figs from sinking to the bottom of your cake batter. The frosting for this cake is similar to cream cheese frosting but one level up because I use goat cheese. It is the perfect blend of tang and sweetness. I like the frosting to be soft. It is somewhere between a frosting and a very thick glaze. You can dollop it on top of the cake, smear it over to the sides and let gravity take over. If you like a thicker frosting, you can certainly add more powered sugar and omit the tablespoon of whole milk. The texture is soft and almost pillow-like, thanks to the addition of the beaten egg white. You gently fold them in at the end just before baking and, boy, is it worth. This cake does not require a special occasion to be made. It is a humble cake with a sophisticated twist.


Since I’ve started gardening I’ve always incorporated lavender. It is great for pollinators, color, long blooms, and that intoxicating smell when the breeze blows it just right.





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Figs are native to western Asia and the Middle East. They are most commonly found dried, but if you ever find fresh figs don't pass them up!

You may use both fresh and dried lavender in cooking or baking applications, however, fresh lavender is more subtle in flavor compared to dried. Remember, you can use the leaves, too.

I love recipes that call for beaten egg whites. The couple of minutes it takes to whip the egg whites and fold them into the batter is worth it. It yields a deliciously soft and ethereal texture.



⁄2 cup salted butter, softened 8 oz. plain goat cheese 1 vanilla bean, scraped (or 1 tsp. vanilla extract) 1 Tbs. whole milk 2 - 4 cups powdered sugar

Whip butter and goat cheese together with vanilla bean until smooth. Add in milk, powdered sugar and salt, beat until fluffy. Add more sugar if you prefer a thicker frosting.




tsp. salt

Dollop and smear on top of cake!

METHOD: CAKE Beat softened butter with sugar until pale yellow, 2 - 3 minutes. Add in egg yolks and chopped dried figs. FIG AND LAVENDER CAKE WITH GOAT CHEESE FROSTING INGREDIENTS FOR THE CAKE: 1 ⁄2 cup salted butter, softened 1 cup granulated sugar 2 large eggs, separated 2 ⁄3 cups whole milk 2 cups all-purpose flour 2 tsp. baking powder 1 ⁄4 tsp. salt 6 or 7 dried figs, dusted in flour and chopped 1 Tbs. crushed lavender

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In another bowl, mix flour, baking powder and salt. Alternating with the milk, add dry ingredients to butter mixture. Beat well. Whip egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold gently into the cake batter until well incorporated. Line a 9-inch cake pan with a parchment round. Butter and flour. You can also spray well with baking spray such as Pam. This recipe also makes about 12 -15 cupcakes. Bake at 350 degrees F. for approximately 40 minutes or until golden brown.

I come from a long line of gardeners, so it was natural for my husband and me to begin our own garden. Harvesting veggies or cutting flowers for bouquets from plants you have tended and nurtured for months is very rewarding. A garden is a wonderful lesson (and reminder) in patience and growth for us all.



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avender is a bushy, lovely-scented perennial plant that originates from the Mediterranean. Prized for its fragrance, medicinal properties and beautiful color, lavender is a valued plant across the world. We associate lavender with its fragrance and color, but the essential oil derived from the flower provides a multitude of purposes. The fragrant oil has antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties and can be used as a natural mosquito repellent. The sweet overtones of the oil are desired for fragrances, balms, salves, perfumes and cosmetics. For culinary applications, its notable taste of lemon and citrus notes is highly desired as a spice for teas, pastas, salads, dressings and desserts. The flower buds, processed by bees, are an essential ingredient in honey. Lavender flowers yield abundant amounts of nectar, from which bees make a high-quality honey. A member of the mint family, lavender is also cultivated as ornamental plants to be enjoyed in our gardens. An added benefit? Its fragrant addition to our landscapes provides a strong attraction to pollinators.


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Sitting at Victoria Train station, waiting to leave for the round-trip afternoon tea ride to the English county of Kent and back.

Taking Tea and Enjoying the Journey T

his spring, I indulged in the most audacious, spontaneous experience of my life. My friend, Ellen, who lives in Washington, D.C., wrote to me on Facebook with a post about taking afternoon tea on a restored 1930s Belmond train through the English countryside hosted by none other than The Great British Baking Show’s Mary Berry. 80 | JULY/AUGUST 2019


Something in me snapped — in a good way. I looked at the images of the train and of smiling Mary Berry and I thought, “Why not? Why can’t I do something like this?” Then I looked at the dates, which were exactly three weeks away. That felt fast. Surely our calendars wouldn’t be free — my weeks are jam-packed and it’s not like we could just go

there for a day or two. It is England, after all. You should go for a week to justify the expense and the time change. But, somehow, my schedule was open enough that I could switch some things around and be available for six days. I talked to my husband, who said, “You should go.” I called Ellen and, amazingly, her INSPIREDHOMEMAGAZINE.COM

I took this trip as much for my former self as I did for my present self.

the dessert course was almost too pretty to eat… almost. the delectable choices were strawberries and cream Battenberg, chocolate opera cake, salted caramel and banana tart and rhubarb and custard macaroon.

schedule was flexible as well. So, we booked the train, the flights and the hotel — and we went. And it was glorious. The whole time I was there, I kept thinking about my younger self — the girl who lived in income-based housing with her young son. The one who served afternoon teas from her tiny galley kitchen, dreaming of England while she made scones, thumbprint shortbread cookies, and cucumber and cream cheese sandwiches. I took this trip as much for my former self as I did for my present self. That girl had great big dreams despite her challenging reality. In the face of economic struggle, she taught her young son to enjoy the simple act of afternoon tea and other little joys. She wouldn’t have believed she could ever even seriously contemplate a trip like this. But she worked hard and continued to dream and, eventually, she stepped out of incomebased housing and got married and started a real job, and her son grew up and graduated from college and is on his own path to success. On this trip, I marveled at the sights, reveled in the walks down the Mall and through Hyde Park and was smitten with the Art Deco train and the entire experience of afternoon tea with Mary Berry. But it was actually the sheer fact I could say yes to the trip at all that was most powerful for me. It gave me the opportunity to consider the path I’ve been on and to be grateful for the journey. And it encouraged me to keep dreaming because the path is stretching out ahead of me and the journey continues. INSPIREDHOMEMAGAZINE.COM

the scone course did not disappoint with clotted cream, jam and Ms. Berry’s famous buttermilk fruited and plain scones.

Dayna and her friend Ellen McElroy were a bit giddy when Mary Berry suddenly appeared in their private car to sit with them and discuss all things tea.


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