Hey there!

I'm Laura. Welcome to Simple and Serene Living. I've worn many hats in my life on this fabulous planet; daughter, sister, mother, grandmother, and friend. This space is one of my favorite hats.
The blog


Friday, August 5, 2022

 Simple Pleasures #50

This has been a week where I really needed resilience.

I knew it was going to be a busy week as Katy had four medical appointments to which I needed to drive her.

Monday was crazy. I picked Cary and Katy up in Grant Park, which is ten miles from me, for an eight o'clock appointment five minutes from me. 

flowers at dawn

I am the designated driver and Cary goes into the appointments with Katy.

After dropping them off I came home ate breakfast and waited for them to call me to pick them up. 

From there I drove them three miles to the next appointment and then went on down the road to walk the track. 

country road leading up a hill

Of course, we all know about best-made plans and on my way to the Wellness Center Cary texted me to come back and pick them up as they were in the wrong place.

The appointment was actually in mid-town Atlanta which was 25 minutes away.

Yikes. We made it.

pills and vitamins

Monday afternoon I felt like I had been hit with a sledgehammer. 

It was either a nasty stomach virus or food poisoning. Needless to say, I needed to rest for a couple of days.

As crazy storms were rolling through my neck of the woods it was a good time to stay at home.

Yesterday's appointment was switched to telehealth, but today there is another medical appointment so I am back out on the road. 

Simple Inspiration

resilience quote

Lovely Reads From Around The Web

My Favorite Summer Recipe

Last week I made my favorite summer recipe.

I have shared it before, but just in case you missed it or have never tried it now is your chance.

What is it?

It's Eggplant Tomato Casserole and I have been making it for almost 50 years. 

As a young woman in my first apartment, I bought a copy of  The Vegetarian Epicure, and although my copy is extremely worn out now it is still available.

The Vegetarian Epicure cookbook

Eggplant tomato casserole has always been a winner whenever I have served it, even with people who normally turn their noses up at eggplant.

It is easy and can be made ahead, put in the refrigerator, and then popped in the oven to bake before serving.

Find the recipe here.

August Reads

As we head into the dog days of summer it seems like the perfect time to kick back with some great new books.

All Sign Point To Paris a novel

The It Girl by Ruth Ware

Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow: A novel

Find more good reads here, here, and here.

Let's Shop

Some of my favorite Amazon purchases this year.

I love everything CeraVe and this is no exception. My under eyes are loving it.

CeraVe Eye Repair Cream | Under Eye Cream for Dark Circles and Puffiness

I love this for my kitchen for propping up my kindle or cookbooks and at night I place it on my bed tray for reading.

Bamboo Adjustable Book Stand

Great little radio for when the power goes out.

PowerBear Portable Radio | AM/FM, 2AA Battery Operated with Long Range Reception for Indoor, Outdoor & Emergency Use

Don't forget extra batteries with a 10 year shelf life

ACDelco 40-Count AA Batteries, Maximum Power Super Alkaline Battery, 10-Year Shelf Life

Love these pretty ceramic bowls.

Mora Ceramic Bowls For Kitchen, 28oz - Bowl Set of 4

I really like this dish brush. It's hanging above my sink.

Wooden Dish Brush

Summer to fall fashion trends

Loving this retro floral patchwork light weight coat.

floral patchwork coat

Best seller canvas medium transport tote.

Madewell medium canvas transport tote

Time for some new sneakers.

madewell sneakers

Relaxed shirred top

J Jill relaxed shirred top
JJill (on sale)

cluster earrings (these just jumped into my cart)

j jill cluster earrings
JJill (on sale)

Summer to fall home decor trends

How much do you love these hammered glass pumpkins?

Pottery Barn recycled hammered glass pumpkin candle holders

Handwoven seagrass sorting basket is perfect for any time of the year.

Pottery Barn handwoven seagrass sorting basket

A pretty accent mirror

wall mirror from Wayfair
Wayfair (on sale)

It's apple season

vintage apples in an old bucket print

Go out into the countryside and gather some end of summer wildflowers.

metal farmhouse vase
Wayfair (on sale)

Thank you for your visit.

Visit my Etsy shop for vintage and antique collectibles and printable art.


This post contains affiliate links


Tuesday, August 2, 2022

 I don't know about you, but if I don't get a good night's sleep I am cranky as an old bear the next day. 

get good sleep

Your mama may have told you that being tired from lack of sleep is just a normal part of aging, but although sleep patterns may change as we grow older, being tired from disturbed sleep is not normal. 

Sleeping well is a very important part of our physical and emotional well being. 

Sleep helps to repair cell damage and aids in our memory function. 

In other words we just feel and function better when we get a good night's sleep.

messy bed

If insomnia is a chronic problem or lasts for more than a few days it is important to talk to your doctor about it. 

However, I have found something that not only works for my occasional insomnia, but is natural as well. 

A doctor told me to drink 4 ounces of tart cherry juice an hour before going to bed.

tart cherry juice benefits

Turns out tart cherry juice is naturally melatonin rich. 

As an added benefit, tart cherry juice contains many antioxidants and anti-inflammatory agents. 

You can read all about its benefits here.

I'll toast to that. 

So bottoms up and pucker up. 

There is nothing more serene than a good nights sleep.


Friday, July 29, 2022

Simple Pleasures #49

The thing I love about cameras is that they capture the world from so many angles.

black and white photo of a camera

Life itself is like that.

There are so many different angles that we can look at the things that are happening in our lives. 

If we choose just one angle we may become disheartened or feel hopeless.

When we choose a different angle we may find a whole new perspective. 

crumbling dirt from a plant

I know that for me when I find a new angle it can feel like the worries start to fall away.

So, don't give up if something hasn't worked out the way that you wanted it to. 

Try again. 

Look at it from a different angle. 

Life is full of infinite possibilities and all you have to do is open up your heart to them.

Simple Inspiration

it's not what you look at that matters quote

Lovely Reads From Around The Web

Gluten-Free Summer Crock Pot Dinner

Summer is the perfect time to pull out your crock pot.

Unlike your oven, your crock pot won't heat up your kitchen and while your dinner is cooking you can enjoy some summertime fun.

I don't know about you, but for me peaches are one of the best parts of summer.

That's what makes these slow cooker shredded chicken tacos with peaches so perfect.

slow cooker shredded chicken with peaches tacos recipe

If, like me, you are too lazy to make your own barbeque sauce their are plenty of great barbeque sauces you can puchase.

Happy summer eating. 

Summer Reads

I can remember when I was younger that summer meant lying on a blanket under a shade tree and reading a new book for hours.

This summer has been entirely too hot for me to read outside, but that doesn't mean I am giving up  on reading.

If you are close to the beach or a pool you might want to throw one of these in your beach bag, but they are just as good when read sitting in the comfort of your air conditioned living room.

the house across the lake a novel

midnight at the balckbird cafe a novel

What I'm Watching

The Hour TV series

The Hour, on Acorn TV, takes us behind the scenes of the launch of a new current events news program at the Lime Grove Studios in London during the mid 1950s, with a highly competitive, sharp witted, and passionate love triangle at it core. 

A controversial breaking story, entangles the news team in anintense inteplay of politics, ambition, and romance, ignited by a mysterious murder and chilling conspiracy. 

I love this show and am currently binge watching season 2.

Summertime Shopping