10 Things I Can’t Live Without: Amy Dragoo of ABCD Design

Amy Beth Cupp Dragoo

Not only does Amy Beth Cupp Dragoo have the best initials ever, she is also a seriously talented lady. Amy has a background in stationery, freelance styling, interior décor, and floral design. Her blog, the aptly named ABCD Design is absolutely delightful! Aside from the stunning photography she includes, Amy’s thoughtful posts engage the reader and give us an insight into Amy’s lovely personality. And by the way, Amy is a Twitter all-star! She and I have developed a friendship through our tweeting interaction. She seriously has the whole Twitter concept down pat and always has great observations, advice, and news to share with her followers.

In the last year and a half, I discovered that there are plenty of things I can live without. You see, in April of '09, my husband and I sold our home and packed everything up and put it in storage. It has remained stowed away for our next step in life together to present itself. While my motto has always been 'Life is short, eat off the good china' what I have learned over the last year is that it really isn't about the good china - it's about finding peace within. While I am the first one to say that I love to surround myself with beautiful things, and I certainly derive immense pleasure from it, there are far greater things in life to take a step back and appreciate. 

abcd home

1) Home

Living with things I find beautiful, that have history, and tell our story make me feel grounded, centered and at ease. It brings peace, calm and comfort to my mind. In the last year I have had 5 addresses. We sold our home, we have lived in a furnished rental, as a nomad between our families in Knoxville and Detroit, and now again we're camping bare-bones in NYC. Most recently, we've recently committed again to life on the East Coast. We purchased a home in the hills of Connecticut. For that, I could not feel more blessed. This is an opportunity for us to feel stable once again, a place to call home. I will never take the feeling of being settled for granted again.

abcd husband

2) My husband

If there was anyone who could balance me out, who could compliment my personality best - he is the one.

abcd family

3) My Family

Without their support I wouldn't be who I am today.

abcd whole foods

4) Whole Foods

The goal for me is moderation in everything. In 1999 I attended the Natural Gourmet Institute's chef training program. It was there that I studied health supportive cooking. We covered everything from preparing recipes for a mostly plant based diet, to selecting organic ingredients, and utilizing whole grains. I feel lucky that I have this knowledge and am able use my skills when preparing food for my family and friends.

abcd fitness

5) Fitness

It's the cheapest anti-depressant out there!


6) Good Health

I can't deny that the three (whole foods, fitness and good health) are entwined. I love a good chocolate bread pudding just like the next guy, but in general I make an effort to select the best choices I can. Without good health, living life to the fullest is a far greater challenge. 

abcd barrington gold

7) Barrington Gold Espresso

I grew up with my Scottish Grandmother living in the house with us. She was in charge of feeding the birds and making the coffee. She did an impeccable job with both. Grandma Ann would perk the darkest, richest, hottest coffee you could imagine in a Corningware stovetop percolator. Since as early as I can remember, (3 maybe?) I used to sit with her and dunk "frycakes" (aka plain doughnuts) in coffee.  For me, my morning espresso is much more than a jolt of caffeine. It is about nostalgia, a ritual and the comforts of home.

abcd dresses

8) Dresses (preferably knee length)

Go ahead, ask anyone you know if they've ever seen me in a pair of pants. I dare you. *winkwink*

abcd visual organization

9) Visual Organization

For me - even if it's just a pile of papers - I want it to be aesthetically pleasing to my eye. Maybe it is my Virgo nature, or perhaps it is a mental illness, whatever it is I am all about putting things in a place to enhance their beauty!

abcd dog {Since there is nothing very visually appealing about Twitter, I thought I'd share this photo of my handsome friend Cecil.}


I can't begin to explain to you the doors that Twitter has opened for me. I have met some of the most wonderful, interesting, supportive, creative and talented people on Twitter. It fascinates me to no end that I can be sitting on my laptop chatting with my all-time favorite interior designer, the writer of the last book I read, and even have job opportunities float across my screen in 140 characters or less. Amazing. Just truly amazing how connected our world has become!


LINKS to images:

#1 http://www.ABCDDesign.com

#2 http://www.ABCDDesign.com

#3 http://www.briandorseystudios.com/

#4 http://abcddesigns.tumblr.com/post/649785993/drikadas-raspberrytart-via-pisforparty

#5 http://abcddesigns.tumblr.com/post/643528147/via-hurricano

#6 http://abcddesigns.tumblr.com/post/672960736/drikadas-fuckyeahrandombeauty

#7 http://www.barringtoncoffee.com/barrington_gold.html

#8 http://weheartit.com

#9 http://thebedlamofbeefy.blogspot.com/2010/03/black-brown-out.html

#10 http://www.abcddesign.com

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