This weekend I stopped in World Market to get some last-minute items for Easter and an upcoming birthday. I came across some cards by Frank & Funny that really made me laugh. I picked out two cards, one about magazine hoarding for my mom (we both have a problem) and the other about SPANX that made me smile in my final stretch of baby weight loss. Each of the cards are written by stand-up comics and have a story about the person who wrote the card on the back. World Market is like Target for me, I go in with a list for wine and snacks and leave with a rug. Speaking of magazine hoarding, I also got the spring issue of Martha Stewart Weddings recently. I have been married for almost 6 years and know no one getting married, but I still buy every issue of MS Weddings. There has to be a support group for this addiction.
We're out of hibernation and hard at work on our Summer issue. We don't want to give much away (we love surprises) but here's a peek at what we're up to. Stay tuned!
If you've read our previous issues, you're no doubt familiar with our friend and fabulous food stylist Betsy Haley of BetsyLife.com. Betsy features amazing recipes every day, and it's pretty much certain that we're Pinning each and every one. This one? This one warranted an immediate trip to the grocery store.
Don't like Brussels Sprouts? Just try this. The tart, crispness of the apples and the creaminess of the feta...oh, man.
Here's the picture that inspired us, from Betsy:
And here's our version. We used fat-free feta because, well, we're under the delusion that our new year's resolutions are in tact.
It was absolutely delicious, and we've already made it several times. Eager for the recipe? Check it out on BetsyLife!
My 40th birthday is next month, and I keep replaying the scene from When Harry Met Sally in my head:
Sally: ...and I'm gonna be forty.
Harry: In eight years.
Sally: But it's there. It's just sitting there like this big dead end.
Well, now that I'm nearly there, I'm certain that it's not a dead end. There is so very much to look forward to, and I'm anxious to see what my 40s bring. Fortunately, I have friends who are reaching the milestone a few weeks before me. And I've been on the hunt for gifts that say anything but "over the hill." Here are a few of my favorites.
I'm a sucker for monograms. Add letterpress to the mix, and I'm completely smitten. Etsy is filled with lovely options. These bold, block letters from Short Grass Designs are classic and very affordable.
Birthday's are for celebrating and toasting to a new year of health and happiness. A little online searching, and you can even track down a bottle of wine to mark the milestone. I'd raise a glass of this 1973 Cabernet.
And if you're looking for a TRULY custom gift for an exceptionally good friend, look no further than a personal or family crest, created by Happy Menocal. Each is one of a kind, created after you and Happy chat so she can learn about the recipient's personality and interests. Fabulous.
If any of my friends are looking for gift ideas, HINT. HINT.
When setting a table for any occasion, it's nice to show off the gorgeous food you've prepared. After a stroll yesterday through our local Anthropologie, we were taken not with the bold, colorful dinnerware, but with the delicate wallflowers of the group.
Take this Piecrust Dinner service. Any entree will stand out on the neutral grey, but the subtle edging detail makes the set anything but plain.
For stemware, we're smitten with the lacy detailing on the Platinum Petals assortment.
When it comes to everyday flatware, it doesn't have to be boring. There's a soft, sophistication to the etching on the Dandelion Greens flatware that's timeless.
This weekend was the 2013 Fruitcake Toss in Manitou Springs, CO. During this annual event, innocent fruitcakes (okay, some of them were probably pretty lousy) are thrown, hurled and tossed by a variety of mechanical devices. Think of it as "Punkin Chunkin" for fruitcakes.
Well, we've searched for a few recipes that likely won't make it to Manitou Springs this year because they're far too delicious to toss. Fruitcakes don't have to be brick-shaped gag gifts. In the middle of winter, they can actually be delightfully decadent fruit desserts. Here are a few of our favorites.
From Kitchen Heals Soul, these fruitcake cookies look tasty with dates and walnuts.
Let's be honest. You don't have to call it fruitcake. Like Arctic Garden Studio, call them Brandy Cherry Bars. Doesn't that sound better already?
And finally, this clever recipe from Tadka Pasta. When life hands you fruitcake, make Fruitcake Trifle!
To round out our calendar roundup, we've sourced a few desk-top calendars sure to get you through the year in style.
No matter the season, Rifle Paper's botanical calendar adds a touch of nature to each month:
When the month's over, this clever calendar from Sugarcube doubles as a coaster set:
Naturally, we're suckers for a European touch--these photos from Journey's Eye are stunning, and might inspire some travel in 2013:
Finally, as a nod to your furry friend, this cut-out French Bulldog calendar will keep you from taking things too seriously. (If only they had a pug!)
If you aren't obsessed with Downton Abbey, then you're with Allison and can wait patiently for tomorrow's post. If you're like me, though, you're DYING to find out what will happen next with the Crawleys and their downstairs staff and squeal with delight at the thought of artful Downton creations. So, here are a few favorites--the perfect gifts for a friend who's a fan, or something just for you. (Don't worry, we won't tell.)
Show off the whole cast of characters on this fun tote from Society 6:
Start your morning with a cup of tea in this lovely mug with a sketch by Robin Karnes of Highlere Castle--I mean Downton.
Which Crawley sister are you most like? These beautifully illustrated cards would be fabulous framed near a dresser or vanity:
And finally, THIS. SCARF. I mean, come on.
WHEW. We're back! We hope your holidays were festive and fun. Are you back in the swing of things yet? (We're getting there...slowly.)
To get organized, we've updated this year's calendars (we have several), and thought we'd share some of our favorites with you. Today it's wall calendars--look for desk versions later this week.
We love everything from Rifle Paper Co., and their Cities calendar is no exception. It doesn't hurt that London is featured on my birthday month.
A go-to for exquisite letterpress is Mr Boddington. Each month features a hand-illustrated design, and you'll want to frame each when the year is up.
We've seen moon phase calendars before, but this one from Rendij Studio is striking.
And finally, a moody take on botanicals from Snow & Graham. We love the high contrast illustrations.
Over the holidays there are no shortage of parties to attend and hostesses to be gifted. Stock your gift closet with a few key items that will take the standard hostess gifts up a notch. These combos will ensure that when presenting the gift, your hostess will not need to do a thing to enjoy them.