Let's say we're all bees. Each and every one of us is buzzing about-
buzz buzz buzz.
The honey that we make is our lives. Experience has taught me two things...


...and LIFE is only as yummy as you make it!

Are YOU a Killer Bee?

bee my guest?

bee my guest?
Howdy Beezers! I'm excited to share something new with you... Over the upcoming months, most of the content you'll be seeing here will be from special guest contibutors! This is sure to add a new texture to this thing we've been weaving over the years. I know that many of my readers (yes, you!) are writers, artists, musicians and filmmakers. PLEASE feel free to contact me if there's something you'd like to contribute! I'd be most honored to pollinate... send me a note: m.mckinley@rocketmail.com

please be seated

October 31, 2009


Happy Halloween Everyone!

October 30, 2009


As the days grow shorter[and colder], I find myself burning more candles. There's something about the warmth and primitive glow that stirs delight. Let's face it, you can't beat candles to create ambiance. I'm sure that you burn more of them in the Fall/Winter too, which is why I'm presenting a little WickEd...

Of course one of the most important things you can do extend the life of any candle is keep the wick trimmed to 1/4 inch. When it comes to tapers and pillars, longer wicks while burning means more soot, and uneven burning. Even with dripless candles, keep the wick short to reduce soot.

Cotton wicks with paper cores, or preferably all paper wicks, ALWAYS. Again, better and more even burning, and very minimal soot.

There's a tremendous amount of debate amongst candle manufacturers about waxes/wax blends, and which are the best. Some tout that all soy burns the cleanest. While that may be true, fragrance buffs contend that a blend of soy and paraffin or other waxes actually carry and deliver fragrance better. This is what I say. Most quality candles ($$) contain better waxes these days, so don't worry about it. If you love the fragrance, buy the candle.

Speaking of fragrance. Real-deal essential oils always deliver a better scent. Besides, do you want to burn chemical fragrances in your house? Permeating the air that you breathe? For me, this IS why it pays to pay just a little more. Sorry kids, that means no Yankee or Glade candles.

When burning candles that come poured in a glass or metal container, remember to always burn them long enough for the wax to melt all the way to the edge of the container. If you do this, the candle will burn cleanly and evenly, all the way to the bottom, and you'll use ALL of the candle. Most candles burn to the edge in an hour, though some take longer depending on the wax and number of wicks.

Since the approaching holiday season is a time when most everyone is buying scented candles to either scent their homes or give as gifts, I'd like to recommend 3 of my favorite companies for fragranced candles. They each have a wonderful collection of everyday scents, and the most delicious holiday fragrances out there. You can click on the links between the pics and visit their websites to find their products in a store near you!




October 29, 2009


[Ed. My camera is on the fritz so this is somebody Else's squash and kale soup. Apparently I didn't invent it...the recipe however is mine!]

1 medium onion, chopped
2 small cloves of garlic, minced
3 tbsp. bacon fat or olive oil
1 15oz. can chick peas
8 cups chicken stock
2 small squash [I like Sweet Dumpling or Delicata], OR 1 Butternut
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
1/2 tsp. white pepper
1/8 tsp. or several good grates of fresh nutmeg
1/2 tsp. saffron threads
additional salt to taste
1 medium-sized bunch organic kale chopped, ribs removed if you like

Peel, seed, and dice the squash into 1 inch pieces.
Over medium heat, saute the onion in the fat until translucent. Add the spices {except saffron}, and cook for 2 more minutes. Add squash and stirring occasionally, cook just until it starts to soften, about 5 minutes. Add chicken stock, chickpeas, and saffron. Simmer for 15-20 minutes. Try a piece of squash. It should be cooked but not too soft. Add the Kale and bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Turn off the heat when the kale has reach your desired tenderness, about 10 minutes.

I've now made this 3 times this month. The second time I added a couple of browned smoked sausages, cut into coins. It was a very nice, but not necessary addition.

October 28, 2009


When I think of interior design today, I see an exciting new era dawning. One that is not is dictated by any one particular style. But rather a movement that is reaching back and extracting all the best from 500 cumulative years of innovations and style trends. Bringing them all together to sing in a surprisingly modern harmony. It transcends all genres, cultures, and ages. That doesn't make an interior "eclectic", it makes it timeless.

October 27, 2009


I just got home from an invigorating walk. It takes about half an hour to get from my new business venture space back to my apartment. Picture it...A gray sky threatening rain, making the most stunning backdrop for every brilliant shade of red, gold and orange tree reaching toward it. The piles of leaves rustling beneath my feet. The cool, but not yet cold air filling my lungs and is crisp against my face, letting me know just how alive I am. I love this time of year.

It's no secret to anyone who knows me that Fall is my favorite season. Yet for some, it's a blunt reminder that impending Winter is merely weeks away. But this is how I look at it. When the leaves end their brief but dazzling display, the bare trees welcome the caking snow to their branches and spend the season rejuvenating, storing their energy for a rebirth in the spring. Then they will proudly introduce us to their new leaves and growth.

I have allot on my plate this Winter. I'm opening a new interior design studio with some dear friends in November. For The Killer Bees I have an electronic press kit that still needs to be edited, and then shopped around to agents, producers, stations, and networks. Recently Cassandra McShepard asked me if I would be interested in representing her, and act as her manager. I was more than honored to accept. I write a blog. And I'm still working at the restaurant because quite frankly, I need the cash. So while the barren branches are storing up their energies so they can be ready to emerge in the Spring with a whole new show, I guess so will I. I feel down to the marrow in my bones that 2010 is going to be a watershed year for me. Like a whole new season, or chapter of my life is about to begin!

If you're dreading Winter, maybe you should look at the extra time spent inside to be one where you go inside. Inside yourself to find the dreams and ideas that you've been storing deep inside your branches. The ones that with a little more introspection, and attention paid to them, may bud in the Spring...and begin a whole new SEASON for you!

October 26, 2009


October 25, 2009


Something to think about....
Watch The Mystery Of The Honey Bee by clicking on the url below.

October 22, 2009


I just came across this tour de force by designer Thom Felicia. It's his Designer Visions Showhouse Apartment project in New York City [inspired by the film "The Big Chill"], and it's scrumptious! I've been threatening to switch my color palette to grey/yellow/brown for years now, and now I'm positively possessed!

To see more pictures and read the article, visit www.housebeautiful.com

October 15, 2009


Be warned and beware!
The world is ripe with viruses this Fall! Not only have I been under the weather lately, but so has my computer! With the both of us "being down" there hasn't been allot of blogging going on. The old girl is going back into the shop (not me, the computer) later today and hopefully within the next week, I should be back on track. I have a slew of new pieces, on assorted topics, in various forms of readiness, which will begin emerging shortly. So stay tuned, I'll bee right back!

October 14, 2009


October 8, 2009

Sweet Potato and Tempeh Stew

Just found this yummy sounding recipe on http://www.thekitchn.com/
Who's going to be the first to try it?

Sweet Potato and Tempeh Stew Serves 4
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, diced 1 clove garlic minced
1 tablespoon grated ginger
6 cardamom pods
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/4 teaspoon salt2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 4 cups)
3 cups vegetable stock or water
8 ounces tempeh, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 cup plain yogurt, divided
Salt and pepper to taste
Toasted pumpkin seeds for garnish

Heat oil in a large, heavy saucepan. Sauté onion and garlic until onion is translucent.
Add ginger, cardamom pods, coriander seeds, red pepper flakes, and 1/4 teaspoon salt and sauté for another minute.

Add sweet potatoes and water or broth. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.

Add tempeh and simmer for about 10 more minutes, until tempeh is cooked through and potatoes are tender.

Remove from heat, season to taste, and stir in 1/2 cup yogurt. Serve garnished with the remaining yogurt and pumpkin seeds.

October 7, 2009


I've plugged this fantastic and innovative blog before, and will continue to do so until everyone reading my blog is reading theirs too! Apartment Therapy is hands down the best website out there regarding all things domestic in nature. It's updated daily from contributors in 5 major U.S. cities, and ALWAYS has the coolest ideas and product features. Today's discoveries are these stunning, etched stainless steel topped occasional tables, and a genius solution for tight dining quarters...a vintage restaurant booth and table! Don't forget that Apartment Therapy also has a wonderful section devoted to cooking and entertaining...

They frequently do design features on everyday people, including their readers, and it's exciting to see what imaginative solutions they come up with!

If you're looking for ideas for your home that are a bit fresher, or more "inspired", then my recommendation to you is continued therapy...


October 3, 2009


Buzz Out!

Buzz Out!