I love it when Hue partner, Kathy, has a new drink for us to try at her place in Maine.  This year, I barely put my suitcase down and she was handing me the most delicious-looking cocktail ever, with a huge welcoming smile on her face.  Pretty much anything would have tasted great at that moment, with the sun shining off the ocean and the HuePhoria Summit about to commence, but this was even better than it looked… it was “Smashtastic.” When I asked what was in it, Kathy pointed to a white crate on the counter filled with a bunch of different ingredients that were obviously coming along with us to a lobster bake that night. “Have crate will travel!” Here are the ingredients in case you are looking for a great summertime concoction to serve up at your next gathering:

“The Smashtastic”

Shot Malibu coconut Rum
Shot Finlandia Grapefruit Vodka
Cranberry juice (I use diet)
Splash of pineapple juice
Shake with lots of ice, top with diet sparkling cranberry
Slice of Lime
“YUM!  Don’t screw around with brands, this is tried and true:)
Better make a pitcher.” – KLB

The Smashtastic

KLB’s Crate

Cheers! and enjoy the rest of your summer…..

Last week, the HuePhoria partners each had a daughter graduate from High School, and these three young ladies will be heading off to college in the fall, followed by four more Hue kids over the next six years.   We are so proud of them all! When I reflect on my daughter’s childhood, I can’t help but notice the parallels between running this glassware business and raising our children. HuePhoria is like this common child we have between us partners, and it has almost always been present in our kids’ lives. I’m sure they treated the competition for attention like a sibling, “she’s busy with HuePhoria right now.” Or “Oh, sure…take HuePhoria to NYC.” HuePhoria has taken us through more trials and tribulations than all of our kids combined, so there’s no favoritism here!  It has definitely wet the bed the most, that’s for sure. The graduates were only in nursery school when we started painting furniture and glassware out of our kitchens for fun and extra cash. Pretty much all they have known is colorful explosions of paint all over the counters and painted things drying everywhere around them…that, and their moms loading up the minivans, totally stressed out, heading off to their next ‘craft show’ to the tune of Sanford and Sons. We would laugh at the craziness the whole way, guzzling down giant gas station coffees and shoveling peanut M & M’s into our mouths for our healthy breakfast. And it was inevitable that at least one of our kids would decide to get sick the day of a ‘big show.’  What would we do without the neighbors?!

Some of the early parallels between HuePhoria partners and our kids:

  • We all took over the entire kitchen when we used our paints, and cooking was out of the question
  • We all preferred snacking
  • We all “fell into the Gap.” Apparently we thought it was cute and artsy to wear overalls…kind of like a HuePhoria uniform.  At least ours didn’t have snaps.
  • We all cried a lot.  It was frustrating trying to take our hobby to the next level of mass production! And kids just cry a lot.

    Lisa & her Grad

As we grew from a hobby to a full-blown business, we did it the only way we knew how; we took each day as it came, with all of its surprises. Kind of like with the kids “Hmm… what will they do to test us today!”? And that would move into “It can’t get any worse than this! Tomorrow’s a new day. Gotta get better.” And it does.  Here’s another parallel/contrast for you:  Some people paint with paint; others paint with whatever’s handy at the moment, perhaps a little something from the diaper.  One of us was lucky enough to have the talented “Poocasso” in the house who created quite the masterpiece. “Oh, I’m sorry Mommy… you actually want to see out of those windows?” #Clorox

Just like our first manufacturing broker who said: “Oh… you mean you wanted the paint to stay on all of these 10,000 glasses?” I can’t remember if the reaction to both of these situations was “are you &%$*# serious?!” or “this really stinks.” I do remember that one was hilariously funny right away, and the other took a few years to crack a smile about. One of my favorite parts about being in this business with Lisa and Kathy is that we all enjoy a good laugh. Humor is one of the best survival tactics around, and it’s free!  Our humor has been definitely tested during the past four years, a time when we have had to dig a little deeper for the laughs. The kids were entering the teen years and we were entering into a challenging economic time to have a small business. The good news is that there was never a dull moment!

Naturally we want what is best, or what we think is best, for anything we create, but I’m convinced that businesses, like kids, have their own plan for themselves.  It becomes very noticeable in those teen years. All of a sudden, these things are coming out of my mouth that my parents used to say to me: “You’re not even listening” “Where are you going?” “You need to start making your own money” …And who knows what I was saying to my kids!! We can try as hard as we want to keep our children/businesses in a semi-controllable state, but there are other forces out there working on them besides us Moms. The key is to trust that we’ve done the best we can with what we have to work with, believe that it’s amazing and surrender the rest.

Kathy & her Grad

Somewhere along this journey, we were all given the fast pass for unlimited roller coaster rides.  Now that I think about it, it came the moment we decided that it would be a good idea to throw a business into our mix of families…”ah, what’s one more kid!” So glad we did because here we are, looking forward to our next HuePhoria Summit so we can plan for 4th quarter, but more importantly so we can all be together in Maine before the girls go off on their new adventures.  If our girls have learned anything from us, I think I can speak for my partners when I say that we hope it’s this: Nothing is more important than enjoying family and friends… and laughing.

They say it costs more than $ 250,000 to raise a child to 18 these days.

The cost to raise HuePhoria:  certainly not priceless, and we wish it were less pricey.

Although HuePhoria won’t be heading off to college this fall, we do have an opportunity to help it progress into it’s next exciting growth phase through this Mission:SmallBusiness! Competition. We need 250 votes to qualify:

We’re not asking for college tuitions, just your vote!


THANK HUE for taking the time to read this, and if you voted, double thanks.

Cheers to the Grads!  Jen

Jen & her Grad

Many hard core New Englanders have their own tried and true methods of cooking their lobsters to perfection. In general, the method of choice is to steam them in a big lobstah pot with a few inches of water. Bertha Nunan, of Nunan’s Lobster Hut near Kennebunkport, ME, says “The secret to cooking lobster is not to murder them. Give them a nice, slow respectable way out.” !! Bertha fills a pot with 2″ of water (whether it’s for 1 lobster or 14), she pours salt 3 times around the inside of the pot and one big blast in the middle to arrive at the perfect amount. When the water comes to a boil, Bertha puts the lobsters in, covers the pot so it’s good & tight, and steams them for 20 minutes. “Not a minute less and not a minute more.”

Another way to do it is to bring 1 1/2-2″ of water to a rolling boil, gently put the lobsters in head first, one at a time, cover tightly and return to a boil as quickly as possible and then start your timer.

Lobster weight : Cook Time

1 1/4 lb  : 7-8 min                                                                                                                                 1 1/2 lb  : 8-10 min                                                                                                                                2 lbs  :  11-12 min                                                                                                                                2 1/2 – 3 lbs  :  12-14  min                                                                                                                   5 lbs  :  20-22 min

Some Rhode Islanders have been know to toss a few celery stalks in the pot; it apparently takes that fishy or sea-weedy taste out of the lobster… it could be an old wives tale (or in this case, Mr. Dick Torrey’s recipe) or just another ritual involved in cooking the “best lobstah evvah!” If someone else is doing all the work to cook an edible lobster… who really cares!  This is an exception, however:

How not to cook a lobster

Couldn’t resist this picture… Corning Museum of Glass is having GlassFest this Memorial Day weekend if you are looking for something fun to do… you just might find a really well done lobster there!

Also, don’t forget to keep entering HuePhoria Facebook contests and we will continue to add your names to our email list for Lobster wine glass raffles on the 27th!!!

Cheers, and don’t forget LOTS of butter.

Tonight is the only night this month that the Moon will be in the sky all night long. The Full Moon is so energizing.  It’s breathtaking, it’s bright and perfect, it keeps you in tune with the cycles of the seasons and with nature. February’s is referred to as “The Snow Moon” to the Algonquin Native Americans because typically snow falls the heaviest in this month. Although this is usually the case here in Syracuse, NY, right now “Spring Moon” might be a more weather appropriate name. Maybe I can do a snow dance… in the meantime, please enjoy these beautiful Moon photos (in case you haven’t already seen them, you wouldn’t want to miss) taken by French Photographer, Laurent Laveder:

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Color is certainly very valuable in our daily lives; it creates a mood and evokes so many feelings and emotions. I always enjoy reading Janice Carlson’s Color Trend Blog; it is a great resource when I’m thinking of new designs and color schemes for HuePhoria… so I thought I’d pass it on to you!  If you’re thinking of freshening up your home environment…pick one of these color schemes hue like and slap a coat of paint on your walls! That’s what I’m going to do this weekend – probably something in the Keep Calm & Carry On trend. You will be cutting edge when you are ‘cutting in’ with Janice’s 2013 picks!  Thanks Janice!

2013 Colors

NOVEMBER 2, 2011 BY 

Could it be that the economy really has turned the corner to recovery? We’ve sold so many of our just-released color forecast (The Trend Curve ™ Colors 2013) so quickly that we would have to say yes.

But, along with economic recovery has come a long-awaited optimism at the international trade shows we attend. It’s a renaissance of creativity and ingenuity that has brought a much wider range of trend and color to the fore. And it’s just that kind of renewed energy that is reflected in the 10 unique trends and 38 new colors of The Trend Curve Colors 2013.

Our Brazilian Brights palette shows renewed bouyancy with such cheery hues as limey Guava Green and vibrant Espirito Orange; while our Rio Rhythm trend surges with optimism and innovation, as Brazil’s dynamic economy captures the world’s attention through the World Cup and the 2016 Olympics. Our 1920′s-30′s Cityscapes trend offers a solid sense of foundation, highlighting everything from Deco-style buildings to manhole covers, as our more-somber mid-value palette captures reliable urban colors, ranging from Armory (gray) to Red Brick.

Meanwhile, Glamour is back — always a sign of recovery — with a lot more personality in our Cheeky Chic trend with its 50s and 60s movie stars and overt use of jewels and luxury fabrics.

Although there is still an emphasis on refurbishing and making do, a sentiment captured in our Keep Calm And Carry On trend, the overall theme of 2013 will be a great push forward with invincible energy. And, even though consumers may feel as if they’re moving into uncharted territory, rooted trends like our Folklore and Trophy Room will remind them that they’ve done so before and that optimistic, reliable trends and colors are sure to attract corresponding outcomes.

Get more details about this diverse color and forecast here.

This January is about remedies and being productive.  It’s also Flu season, and you can’t be very productive with the Flu or nasty cold… so the first remedy I want to introduce you to is dear Auntie Flo’s recipe to combat the Flu or any general discomforts you may be experiencing for that matter. Anything that is keeping you from achieving your goals, big or small, needs to be “nipped” (pardon the pun).

This is Auntie Flo:


Beautiful Auntie Flo

… and this is Auntie Flo’s Recipe:

You may have tried this recipe in the past, but it is different when you call it Auntie Flo’s, as in “I need some Auntie Flo’s to get rid of this thing!”

1. Boil water and make a big cup of tea.

2. Stir in 2 tsp of honey (if you really want to get fancy, get the Manuka honey – it has antibacterial properties)

3. Squeeze in some lemon juice, about 1 TBS

4. Pour in a shot of Whiskey 

Go directly to the couch or to bed… do not attempt to drive anywhere or expect to be socially adept.  Just rest. Even if you just tried this recipe for the heck of it, and you’re not sick at all, stay put.

In the morning, your head and sinuses will feel cleared and you will be one step closer to checking things off of your 2012 list.

Here’s to enjoying a healthy, happy New Year!

It’s always so great to see your friends achieve their goals and dreams, especially when they toil away on their projects month after month into the crazy wee hours of the morning only to be woken up a few hours later by their little toddlers… rearing to go!


My good friend, Anne, is one of those friends and she has just recently launched her new custom stationery website and it is quite the masterpiece! She never ceases to amaze me with her creativity.  Annie’s a Texan, so she named her business Tortilla-Soup after one of her favorite comfort foods.  I’ve actually had Anne’s tortilla soup, and it rocks… just like her website:


For those of you out there looking for fine quality personalized cards, invitations, party favor packaging, stickers,  (and more!) at a reasonable price, you will be so happy with her work.  You will notice Anne’s attention to detail when you visit her site, and also when you receive your final product from her.  As a Mom herself,  Anne knows that these cards and invites usually are saved for a scrapbook as a fun way to remember the year or event.  I noticed that there’s a nice ‘launch special’ running right now for Holiday cards…hint hint.

Congrats, Anne, and Cheers to Moms,



Gimme an M! …M!  What does it spell?  “Less Stress!”

Adding mindfulness meditation to your day will make you feel more relaxed and exhilarated.  It can help you be in the present and not thinking about the past or worrying about the future.

We all have a super abundance of thoughts running through our minds (all the time): jobs, finances, college search, teenagers, toddlers, saving the planet.  You know… the usual.  All it takes is about 20  minutes of meditation practice to get a good dose of the here and now, clear your mind and take time to get to know your self.  “OM”

Even our pets are feeling the stress in our households and seeking solace.  “AARF”

Mindful meditation will help promote happiness at home and at work.  You need to find a place of solitude that works for you, and it doesn’t matter where you are; you can go anywhere in your mind.

Here’s a link to get you started meditating, if you haven’t already:  http://bit.ly/qphjN1

What the?

Don’t feel bad if you can’t get into this pose… but if you can do it in the next two days I will personally send you a free HuePhoria wine glass!



Inspiring Women Series Part 2

If you haven’t yet heard JK Rowling‘s address to Harvard’s Graduating Class of ’08 now is a good time to do so.  With her final Harry Potter coming out tomorrow, on a full moon no less, it is truly inspiring to listen to her story of how she uncovered her greatness. To do so, she endured some serious darkness but continued to trust her instincts.

After you watch JK Rowling’s speech, don’t just go out and fail for the heck of it so that you can hop on that path to your destined success! Just know that it’s okay to fail when you believe you are doing the right thing.  You will eventually be lead by your gut  to what you inherently know is your calling… if you listen.

So grab your favorite HuePhoria glass, fill it up to the top so there are no unnecessary interruptions for refilling during the video, and click here to watch: http://bit.ly/b9dOjp 

Once again, a woman blasts through more than her share of adversity and comes out on top.  I wonder who the next inspiring woman will be… I’m always open to suggestions!

Thanks for reading and watching,


Watching Wimbledon always makes me thirsty for PIMM’s.  Actually, Summer doesn’t officially begin for me until I have had my first PIMM’s of the season.  It brings back many happy memories of visiting my family in England and traveling in our rented bus together to see the tennis matches.  We would pull into Wimbledon after a few hours’ drive, find a primo parking spot and break out the Champagne! (Our family was big into celebrating with the Bubbly, and the fact that we were all together was the favorite reason to pop the cork). My Grandfather, G.R.B. (Bobby) Meredith, played tennis at Wimbledon for 15 years for England before and after WWII, so the whole experience for us was very special and very celebrated.  G.R.B. (Bobby) Meredith We would watch the morning matches and reconvene at the mini bus for lunch. My Granny, my mom and aunts would create a tailgate party fit for the Queen herself, while my Grandfather proceeded to serve up the traditional PIMM’s No.1 Cup (official drink of Wimbledon spectators).  It’s such a refreshing Summertime drink:

MIX 1 part PIMM’s No.1 Cup  with 3 parts chilled British Lemonade (closer to diet 7 up here in the US) ADD sliced cucumber, strawberries, peaches, oranges, (whatever you like) and toss in a mint leaf.  Jolly Good! 

It has been 75 years since a Brit (Fred Perry) has won Wimbledon, which was during the time my Gramps played, so I would love to see Andy Murray win this tournament.  If I can’t have that,  I’ll be happy with some really good games and …  PIMM’s Anyone?