Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Wrap It Up!

Tis the wrap! And no, I don't mean break out in your inner Eminem, just look around your house to find objects and creative ways to wrap up gifts this year.  Heck why not look in your own backyard while you're at it!  You'll be surprised at what you can come up with you wrapping god/goddess you!  Here are a few ideas I found and really are some of my favourites! 

(Thanks to: 1 & 2. Sweet Paul 3. Grey Likes Weddings 4 & 5. Bugs and Fishes )

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

"Once Upon A Time"

There once was a cabin, deep in the woods south of Berlin, and all the animals came.  

There was originally a charming wooden cabin dating back to 1926, and the architects wanted to maintain the charm, atmosphere and simplicity of the original.  The end.    
(Source: stylepark)
I like this story.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Oh my my!

This is probably the shortest post I'v ever done, not to mention the ONLY one about good eats, but THANK YOU FOOD GODS for this recipe today!  It was just what I wanted, fat and all!  Yes, bring it on!  (See the 'simple' pattern here? See previous post.) Talk about enjoying life to the fullest and oh just wait until my kids find out what their fabulous mother comes up with for dinner tonight!  Who's popular now...huh?! 

Happy Friday Folks!

Slow Cooker French Dip Sandwiches
approx 3 1/2 lbs beef chuck roast
16-oz. beef broth (1 1/2 cans)
1 10.5-oz. can condensed French onion soup
6-oz red wine
1 tsp garlic powder
salt and pepper, to taste
4-6 French rolls
sliced provolone cheese, optional

Trim excess fat off of beef roast and season meat all over with salt and pepper.
Pour beef broth, condensed French onion soup, red wine and garlic powder into slow cooker and place beef roast into liquid.
Cook on low for 6-8 hours. Slow cookers have different time intervals that you can select, so work with your cooker. Depending on how the settings on your slow cooker work, the time will vary. Since this is cooking in liquid, you don’t have to worry about the meat drying out in the same way you might if you were roasting the meat in the oven. Mine took 7 1/2 hours and was falling apart tender.
Take beef out and rest it, covered with aluminum foil, for about 15 minutes. Slice beef and return to slow cooker on low or very low for 30 minutes.
Lightly toast the bread and evenly distribute cheese between rolls, if using. Divide beef onto rolls and spoon the beef juice* into ramekins or other small bowls and eat everything while it is hot. Serve each sandwich with its own dip.
Seves 4-6.
*Note: If there is excess fat in your au jus, simply pour it from the slow cooker into a large measuring cup and let it stand for about 5 minutes so the fat separates. Skim it off, then pour the juice into serving cups.
(Thanks to bakingbites.)

Thursday, November 24, 2011

An Attitude of Gratitude

Today on this American Thanksgiving Day, as I sift through many tweets and posts all over the world wide web, I wonder if the true meaning of Thanksgiving is lost. It isn't Thanksgiving Day in Canada, (October 10, 2011), but I am ALWAYS thankful for many things...most falling into the category of the simple kind.  I find myself to be more patient and believe it or not, happier with less "stuff". 

Forgive me if it makes my head spin, but I can't figure out the allure of going out the day after you are supposed to "be grateful" for what you HAVE, not what you WILL HAVE in less than 24 hours.  What's even more disturbing is that Canada is following this BLACK FRIDAY trend by having UBER ridiculous sales and luring buyers to frankly...get more stuff! You'll pardon me if you are one of those people that is actually shopping for someone in need.'s an idea.  If you must go out to join the madness, why not contact your local Christmas Bureau first and adopt a family this year.  Find out what they may need or want and help make their holiday the best ever!  How simply gratifying!  

So I ask everyone on this day to take a look at what you DO HAVE in your life, and have an attitude of gratitude.  
Really. Simple. Stuff.  

Happy Thanksgiving. xo

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Home For The Holidays

I consider myself a bit of a design nerd.  Interiors and design are my passion and I definitely have a sense of the style I love.  I use that word lightly, because I can honestly say that I pick a little here and there, fidgeting with my belongings and constantly moving things around, whether it's a simple vase, book or as big as a sideboard.  That is what it's truly about in your home.  I have never been one to follow what others are doing. One thing that stays true to me is making sure I am providing a space that has a sense of light and feels airy for my family.  Using various woods and textures and creating spaces that can be used by everyone.  No room is off limits.  A lot of my inspiration comes from the Scandinavians who are masters at combining those elements. 

So for the holidays this year, don't stress about making your home perfect. Try to create what you love by using what you love. It's really that simple.  Creating your own style and not following what's "in" or the latest trend, and making sure to add that cozy factor is the key.  Listed below, I have shared a few of my tips I like to follow for the holidays, and hopefully you can take something from them to help make your house a home for the holidays!

1. It's easy to get in over your head with the holidays and the stress that goes along with it.  Think about what you don't want to be without. If you're thinking about what everyone else is doing, you've lost the whole point of Christmas.  

2. Spend time together as a family.  Bake Christmas goodies, build gingerbread houses, decorate the tree, whatever it is.  Don't let that time go by without doing fun things with your family.  

3. Don't go overboard with the budget on decorations.  Just look in your own backyard!  Nature is free and gorgeous!

4. Use the tried and true...lots of candles!  Create that cozy factor I mentioned.  It also creates heat and can be an inexpensive way to look amazing and festive!

4. Potlock!  Get everyone to bring something to contribute to the dinner. It really doesn't matter what it is, but it will alleviate all the time you would normally spend cooking, and you can spend more time with family and guests.  So simple and stress free!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


During the holidays I tend to frequent the second hand stores in my hometown (support local!) quite often, (they definitely know me!).  Always seeking out a new set of fabulous finds for get togethers and dinner parties.  I have also found a few other sources to satisfy my thirst for deal's and this year I'm finding so many great things!  The thought of mixing old w/new is just so appealing to me, because it makes it personalized, has a story and makes for great conversation!  I thought it would be fun to share just a couple of my super deals and wondered...what do you look for when you visit those great little shops?  What has been your favorite find so far?  Feel free to share and comment below...happy thrifting!   

(Just wait until you see the fab finds I picked up for the holidays! Will be sharing soon...stay tuned!)  

Friday, November 11, 2011

Dana Tanamachi-Custom Chalk Letterer

Today is a day for reflection.  Honouring the ones who sacrificed what many of us will never know, so we could enjoy the freedom we have today.  That is why it is important to take a moment, or two and remember where you came from and who you are.  I came across this amazing artist, Dana Tanamachi while doing just that and her message is pretty clear, "Live What You Love", My love for chalkboard paint is well...HUGE, and it just seemed so appropriate to share this video with you.  Stay true to who you are and don't ever change, and most importantly, love what you do everyday!  I sure do! Be sure to check out the rest of her work on her website!  

(Image courtesy of

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Versatile Blogger Award

After having one of those 'blah' days yesterday, it was such a relief to wake up to a new day and to find that a good blogger friend had awarded myself, along with 6 others the "Versatile Blogger Award"!  How special and talk about making someone's day a lot brighter, so thanks to Sheila Zeller of SZInteriors, I was on the road to a great day!  Be sure to check out Sheila's blog, she is one very talented lady with tons of great ideas to share!

Part of this award requires me to share 7 things about myself that you wouldn't normally know.  So here goes:

1. I am a huge Humanitarian-both animals and poverty stricken nations tug at my heart strings.  I wish I could save every one of them on this planet!   If only I would just win that million now I could and fulfill that dream!  But for now, I do what I can, with both time and money. 

2. Having a Scandinavian background, it seems to be embedded into my soul, that I should also decorate and live like one here on the West Coast!  I was lucky enough to live in Norway for two whole years and it feels just like yesterday.  It has to be my most favourite way to be surrounded by relaxing, calming, beautiful white and natural elements!  As I like to say "It is the backdrop to my life!"  Nothing else will do! 

3. I am a single parent and have been for many years.  It can be a challenge to balance everything, however I wouldn't change a single thing (except still waiting to meet my knight in shining!)  I am so lucky to have my two gorgeous kids who I can say with pride, are becoming extraordinary individuals and have helped shape me as a mother, woman and continue to teach ME things everyday!  They make me proud!!

4. I'm a bit of a closet philanthropist.  Always looking at the bright side of life and trying to spread the word.  I can't stand it when people complain on a daily basis over meaningless things OR for that matter brag about having too much!  There are so many in this world without the basic necessities!  OK, rant is done...:)

5. I LOVE chalkboard paint!  It's a MUST HAVE in my 'toolbox'!

6. I always wanted to design handbags and shoes and have been fascinated by them ever since I was a little I dream of having home accessories (think pillows, throws, etc.), to go along with them (think Tory Burch)!  Yes, it's more like a BIG dream:)

7. I used to be a ballet dancer and taught as well.  I still get the itch.  

It's all about the creative side of life for me.  I wouldn't want it any other way! 

The second and last part of this award requires me to send this to 7 other fabulous and talented bloggers and even though I don't them very well I know they deserve this!  Thanks again to Sheila for making my day fabulously fabulous!  You can check out her amazing blog @

Hope you all have a fantastic day!

Bloggers To Check Out:

Photo courtesy of Cole & Son

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Dining Chair Makeover-Mid-Century Modern Love! Part 1

Let me say this...when given the chance to take something off someone else's hands (in this case it was in my grandmother's crawl space), and it looks THIS gorgeous to begin with, (shape, lines, danish walnut..HELLO!), yeah, I jumped! HIGH!  My actual first taste of authentic mid-century modern AND made in Canada!  I'm in love!  I don't know much about the furniture maker, but the maker mark (see picture below), says it's from The Honderich Furniture Company Limited, founded in 1911.  This particular dining set came with 5 armless chairs and one with arms.  I was happy to get the matching buffet even though I am not one for matchy matchy pieces, this is exquisite!  
So, needing to update the pieces, I already had some fabric I  purchased from IKEA about a year ago that I wasn't using for anything and thought it would be perfect to recover the cushions on the chairs with.  
Here is the before and after shots of one of the chairs!  See...gorgeous lines, even more so after the fabric went on! 

So stay tuned for more of my mid-century makeover as I prepare to finish the table next.  The top is covered with water stains unfortunately but nothing a little sanding and painting won't cure!  I can't wait for the whole thing to be completed as it's going to look fabulous!!  
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...