Monday, January 28, 2013

My Weekend

I had one of those weekends were I accomplished a lot, i.e. painting and more painting.  However, it was good because I love that feeling you get when you actually finish something that you have been wanting to do for a very long time.  My kitchen is finally coming together, as much as it can on my extremely tight budget. 
I can't stop thinking about these Julia Child prints above from Pot + Pantry.  They would be perfect in my kitchen.  Also, I scored what I hope to be the most perfect chairs a girl could ask for from Restoration Hardware.  At $39.00 each I could not pass them up.

Hagen Stained Chair

There was a little time for some baking for a special birthday.  I bought these large baking cups awhile ago from The Cupcake Social and I was surprised how much I liked them.  They are jumbo size so they do make big cupcakes but they fit in a regular cupcake pan, are so easy to use and come off the cupcakes really easy.  There is nothing worse then losing part of your cupcake in the bottom of the wrapper.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Words I Live By

Friday, January 25, 2013

Kitchen Shelves Styling

I already have a stainless steel kitchen rack that I want to put in my kitchen, once I finally finish painting (hopefully this weekend). So I have been going through numerous pictures getting ideas and trying to figure out the look I want. I don't want anything to cluttered or too colorful. I want things white, simple and practical. I would like to actually use the stuff on the shelves. I love the look of white dinnerware and serving pieces and baskets to warm up the coldness of the stainless steel and white. I am not good at styling a space so I need all the inspiration I can find.

The majority of these pictures are from Restoration Hardware.

Thursday, January 24, 2013


                                                       Found here via
I can't stop thinking about this print.  I love the colors and the detail is amazing.  Definitely putting this on my wish list.    

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Work in Progress

I started painting my kitchen white, not just any white, Benjamin Moore Super White.  Remember my inspiration? It is such a dramatic change. The room looks bigger, fresher. However, I am a bit nervous. I'm not sure what I was thinking having a 14 year old and two 12 year olds. I have become the wall police. I never realized how much they touch the walls. The walls are so white and bright they make my awful linoleum floor look really dull and dirty. I just want to have the room finished so I can an idea what it will really look like.  Also, I can't decide if I should do my family room the same color?  I think I will to get a unified look.  In addition, the wood trim looks a lot better against the white but I kind of want to paint it white too.  Man, once you start a project it can make the home improvement process never ending. . .

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Proud American

Images via Huffington Post

Friday, January 18, 2013

Hello Weekend!


Weekend Food

gnocchi assembled with tomato broth

Lately, I have had the urge to spend all day in the kitchen just cooking and baking away.  Maybe it is the result of the cold winter days, but this gnocchi in tomato broth keeps screaming my name, perhaps served with Salsa di Parmigiano and Francis Ford Coppola Cabernet Sauvignon.   
salsa di Parmigiano and grilled bread

This winter salad on Studio Cuisine look delicious. 

Winter Salad and Simple Balsamic Vinaigrette | Studio Cuisine

Of course, I can't forget dessert, these Kitkat cheesecake bars look amazing.

Kit Kat Cheesecake Bars from Bakers Royale Kit Kat Cheesecake Bars

Thursday, January 17, 2013

12 Years Old

Photo: I figured cake for breakfast is ok on your birthday? Happy 12th Birthday to my baby boys. I am so blessed.

Photo: I figured cake for breakfast is ok on your birthday? Happy 12th Birthday to my baby boys. I am so blessed.

My babies turned 12 yesterday.  Where does the time go?
Somedays I just want to hold my little babies again but I am so proud of the men (yikes, men) they are becoming.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Be Still My Heart


My heart literally skipped a beat when I came across these photos of Kelly McGuill's house on Two Ellie today.  It seems perfect to me, warm and modern yet clean and crisp with great texture and materials.  I finally found my inspiration for my home.  I am going to try and stay focused on this look and not get distracted by all the great designs and "stuff" I come across.  I really like the uncluttered and clean look of this space.

Monday, January 14, 2013

My Family Room

My main goal for the next couple months is to transform my family into a room that is modern, stylish and comfortable. The room is still the beige color it was when the home was built 12 years ago. I still don't have window treatments and the fireplace is dated. Also, the room is long and I'm not sure how to layout the furniture and tv. Since I really don't know where to start and my funds are very limited, I decided to first paint my cabinet black. The color is "Blackjack" by Benjamin Moore.

The picture is bad because I lost the light in the evening.

Baked Fontina

baked fontina with herbs and garlic

Baked Fontina  from Alexandra's Kitchen has been my go to appetizer lately.  It is so easy and it not only looks impressive but it taste really fresh.  I made it this weekend for my birthday and everyone loved it. I served it with some fresh bread rounds and it disappeared quickly.   Recently, I have been focusing on cooking things that have a lot of flavor but not a lot of ingredients.  With this baked cheese you can really taste the flavors of the garlic, olive oil, cheese and fresh herbs.  Honestly, I could eat this with some fresh crusty bread and a glass of wine for dinner every night.
How come whenever I cook anything it just doesn't look as good as the original?  I could blame my
camera on my phone just to make myself feel better.


Friday, January 11, 2013

It's My Party......

And there is no crying here. I'm so grateful too of had such a wonderful birthday weekend spending time with family and friends. As I get older I find that birthdays are a time for me to reflect on how blessed I have been this year and a time to plan/dream of the exciting year ahead.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Emily Henderson's Creating Color Palette

Emily Henderson has one of the most helpful blog post on creating the perfect color palette that I have ever seen.  I am one of those people who can see rooms I like but can not figure out how they there and since I can't afford to have Nate or Emily come to my home I am stuck trying to figure this out on my own. 

A View My Window

I remember reading something once, which I believe was from Mr. Nate Berkus, that you should decorate your room with colors that compliment the view.  The idea of using the colors from your view as the color palette for your room. I want to embrace this idea, however, the colors obviously change from season to season but I think I am most fond of the cool winter colors.  I love the white with blue, grey and brown hues and just a pop of green. 

My family room needs help.  It is outdated, doesn't have a window treatment, the walls are still the builder beige color, the carpet is old and cheap.  We have been in this home 12 years now and it is definitely time for a change.  I never painted this room because I could never decide on a color, I am afraid to commit, but I am ready now.  I'm ready to take the plunge and make some decisions.  I have an extremely tight budget and I'm not sure were to begin but I think if I take things slow and get lots of inspiration/ help I will be OK and the room will look great.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Florence and The Machine

I can stop listening to Florence and The Machine lately.
She is so incredible live. I think her voice is just magical.
I just bought the MTV Unplugged live album on iTunes and it is excellent. 
I love this version of "Jackson" on the album.  Sometimes I waste too much time trying to look up different versions of my favorite songs, because songs can have such a different sound and tone depending on who preforms them. 

Thoughts For 2013

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Year!

The thought of a new year is so refreshing. It is a chance to start over, a chance to feel renewed. The thought of a new year gives you the hope that things will get better, that you really can have the growth, wether it be personally or professionally, that you so desperately want.

Lately, I have been thinking a lot about who do I want to be? What do I want my life to look like?
Because without growth, who are we? I truly believe we are happiest when we are growing, accomplishing things, becoming our best self.

The growth that is most important to me this year:

1. Health
- Eat more whole foods, less processed food.
- Move more, I sit at a desk all day so this a must.
- Stop focusing on the number on the scale and more on how I feel.

2. Finances
- Create a budget and stick too it.
- Continue to pay attention to what I spend money on. I prefer to bring less stuff
Into my life and home, but the things I do purchase need to be meaningful, high quality
and long lasting.

Wishing everyone a very Happy New Year!