Tuesday, September 6, 2011

{lisa hubbard photography}

This photo evokes a sort of last hurrah to the long days of summer where you could eat dinner well into the early evening and it would still be light out.

Alas, summer we'll see you again next year.

Monday, September 5, 2011

{bon appetit}

This classic dish gets a seasonal update with sweet heirloom tomatoes.

Heirloom Tomato Caprese

The Ingredients
3/4 cup of small heirloom cherry tomatoes (such as Sun Gold or Sweet 100), halved
1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon high-quality extra virgin olive oil
1 to 2 ounce ball of mozzarella
Fleur de sel
4 to 5 micro basil

The Preparation
Mix tomatoes, salt, and oil in a small bowl. Let stand, tossing occasionally, until juices release from tomatoes and oil and juices have become saucelike, about 15 minutes. Place mozzarella off-center on a large plate. Spoon tomatoes and juices from bowl around one side of the cheese. Sprinkle tomatoes with sea salt; scatter basil all over. Place Crostoni Bagnati next to the cheese.

Original article: bon appetit
{lisa romerein photography}

Succulents are growing in popularity because of their simplicity and the fact that they're nearly indestructible.

Watering tip: Succulents should be watered generously during their growing months in the summer. But only water them every other month during the winter when they go dormant.

Temperature tip: Succulents are much more cold-tolerant than many people assume. As in the desert, where there is often a marked contrast between night and day, succulents thrive in colder nights, down to even 40ºF. Ideally, succulents prefer daytime temperatures between 70ºF and about 85ºF and nighttime temperatures between 50ºF and 55ºF.

Mantra of the Day

"If you don't love yourself, you cannot love others. You will not be able to love others. If you have no compassion for yourself then you are not able to develop compassion for others."

- Dalai Lama
{lisa romerein photography}

Opaque glassware the colour of a robin's egg, zebra print and vibrant splashes of orange bring this space alive.
It's chic yet modern for everyday living.
{joy the baker}

Joy the Baker has done it again. This time making a delicious Summer to Fall drink recipe.

Lemon Meringue Pie Milkshakes

The Ingredients
1 pint of lemon sorbet
2/3 cups of milk
Handful of graham crackers
Whipped cream

The Preparation
Grab a blender and a pint of tart lemon sorbet.  Blend sorbet with about 2/3 cup of milk.  I used a few splashes over 2/3 cup.  Once milkshake is blended smooth and thick, add a hearty handful of crumbled graham crackers.  Stir with a spoon.  Spoon the milkshake into 4 small glasses.  Top with whipped cream and more graham cracker crumbled.  Eat with a spoon and big ol' straw.  Enjoy immediately. 

{paris. ami sioux}

A great coffee table book and gift idea for any homeowner.

Paris 48°49N 2°29E is the follow-up book by photographer Ami Sioux. In the book, Sioux asks "50 inhabitants to hand-draw a map to a place of their choosing, a place that is significant or important to them personally, for any reason. She then uses the map to navigate to each location and take a photograph to represent each location." The result portrays "a side of each city as interpreted by those who live and work in it every day. It's not a guide to the new cafe or club, but rather, a unique way of discovering different parts of the city."

Buy it here
{west elm}

Something fun to do: Makeover your bed

The Parachute series from West Elm in white or feather gray bring a certain rustic yet clean feel to any bed.

West Elm also has a fun virtual bed makeover tool on their website as well.
{bethenny frankel}

It's rather hard finding a cleanse that is gentle on your system. 

Bethenny Frankel's Skinnygirl Daily Cleanse is the solution. You just toss it in your purse and pour it in with some water and you're ready to go.

Don't worry, you'll still be able to drive through rush hour traffic afterwards.
{bon appetit}

Brunch is by far the best meal of the day. It combines the ingredients of breakfast and lunch and not only that, it's a great excuse to sip champagne at ten-thirty in the morning.

This great little recipe calls for polenta. It's heartwarming and perfect to wake up to.

Breakfast Polenta with Chorizo and Queso Fresco

The Ingredients
1 1/3 cups of crumbled queso fresco or feta (about 6 ounces)
1/2 cup of chopped cilantro
3 1/4 cups of water
1 cup of polenta
1 pound bag of frozen yellow corn kernels
1 pound of chorizo, casings removed
1 pound of cherry tomatoes

The Preparation
Preheat oven to 425°F. Toss cheese and cilantro in small bowl. Mix 3 1/4 cups water, polenta, and corn kernels in 13x9x2-inch glass baking dish. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper and stir to blend well. Bake until water is absorbed and polenta is tender, stirring once, about 25 minutes. Meanwhile, sauté chorizo in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat until browned, breaking into small pieces with side of wooden spoon, about 6 minutes. Add cherry tomatoes to skillet. Cover, reduce heat to medium, and simmer until tomatoes soften, about 6 minutes. Uncover; crush some tomatoes with fork. Simmer until tomatoes release juices and sauce thickens slightly, about 10 minutes. Spoon polenta onto plates. Top with chorizo mixture, then cheese mixture.

Original article: bon appetit
{all doing}

Wood paneling on any house adds a degree of modernism and warmth to any house. The clean lines and neutral tones bring the entire design together. 

The key: wide open spaces.

Friday, September 2, 2011

{Nick Cook Photography}
Mantra of the Day

"There is a place in you where there is perfect peace.
There is a place in you where nothing is impossible.
There is a place in you where the strength of God abides."

-A Course In Miracles
{three dogs in a garden}
One of the most stunning colours for Fall is burgundy.

And these wine-coloured Dahlias are no exception.

Mix these beautiful flowers with pops of fresh greens in a clear vase. And create a warm and interesting air to any room.


How stunning and refreshing does this margarita look!

Spicy Grapefruit Margarita

The Ingredients
2 cups plus 2 tablespoons tequila
1 to 2 habanero chiles, halved
Kosher salt
6 cups of fresh pink grapefruit juice

The Preparation
Mix tequila and chiles in a large pitcher. Let steep 3 hours, or longer if a spicier tequila is desired. Discard chiles. Pour enough water onto a small plate to cover. Pour enough salt onto another small plate to cover by 1/4". Dip rims of eight 12-ounce. glasses into water, then into salt to lightly coat; fill with ice. Add grapefruit juice to pitcher with tequila. Fill with ice; stir until cold. Divide drink among glasses.
Original article from bon appetit
This is a great back to school book to read to your little ones as they traverse their first day of school.

The Kissing Hand, by Audrey Penn

When Chester the raccoon is reluctant to go to kindergarten for the first time, his mother teaches him a secret way to carry her love with him.

Buy it at Barnes and Noble


Found this great recipe from Joy The Baker.
It serves as a great side dish to any fish or meat you might want to cook up this Labor Day weekend.
Green Israeli Couscous Salad

The Ingredients
3 cups of water
1 1/2 cups of dry Israeli couscous
1 1/2 cups of sliced snap peas
1 English cucumber, cut into chunks
1/3 cup chopped parsley
1/2 cup sliced green onions
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
1/2 cup roasted and salted pistachios
3 tablespoons of olive oil
2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice
generous pinch of salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

The Preparation
In a medium saucepan, bring three cups of water to a boil.  Add a generous pinch of salt, followed by Israeli couscous.  Stir and reduce heat to a simmer.  Simmer until couscous is just tender, with a slight bite, about 10 to 13 minutes. Drain into a fine mesh strainer and rinse with cold water.  Set aside.

1 Give Electronics A Proper Place: Finally give into your husband and invest in a flat panel TV. The objective is to keep electronics off the ground (i.e. those horrendous wires) and incorporate them into the design
2 Keep It Open: This should be your new mantra, "declutter, declutter, declutter"
3 Use Geometry: Harken back to your high school days and always keep in mind the lines. Symmetry is the key here!
4 Pick The Right Accessories: Adding texture is SO important. Everything should be a similar colour but throw in some cable knit, faux fur or satin in addition to your normal cotton pillow treatments.
5 Use One Key Colour: You need something to tie the entire room together and must times it is done by picking one key neutral color. Then add one vibrant splash of colour like the hot pink from the orchids seen in the photo above. 
Original Article: sheknows