I love working with food, but one of my other passions is home decor, so I hope you’ll humour me with this post! I’ve caught the decor bug in recent years, and I just love every stage of putting a room together. The only problem is that I don’t have much time for home decor projects (I’ve completed 2 nurseries and an office in 5 years…lol), so I’ve been chipping away at this office at a snail’s pace. But I’m quite happy with how it’s come together. My goal was to create a serene and elegant home office with a lil’ bit of drama!
When we first moved into this house, we painted the office grey. We were going through a huge grey phase, but over time it started to wear on me, and I found the office was less than inspiring. I started to feel blah whenever I was in there (I also regret painting the basement grey…ugh!). One of my blog readers actually warned me about picking grey for an office, but I didn’t listen…you guys are always right! After going back and forth over what colour(s) I wanted to paint my office (I tested everything from spa green to super soft blush pink and, yes, even yellow!), I finally settled on a navy–charcoal blend and blush pink.
When I pictured my white office furniture popping off a dark, dramatic wall, I was sold. I didn’t want the whole room to be dark, so I kept the rest of the walls white for an airy feel. I’ve gone back and forth over whether I should do a bit of wallpaper on one wall (maybe the front wall where the windows are?), but I’ll most likely just leave it alone!
The only thing missing is the light fixture above my desk. The electrical needs to be put in and I need to pick out the light…any ideas?? Should I go with a chandelier…or a semi-flush or…?
First, I’ll kick things off with my TWO bosses…they are fairly new to their “directing” roles, but it’s like they’ve been doing it their whole lives…. 😉
And here’s how it looks during the month of December! Lately I’ve loved getting up extra early for some “me time” in the morning—I turn the Christmas lights on, sit at my desk with my coffee, and do some writing, reading, planning, etc.
By the way, just in case you missed my big holiday newsletter, you can find a round-up of my favourite festive vegan recipes here! If I don’t chat with you again before signing off for Christmas, I hope you have a fantastic holiday! Thank you for all of your amazing support, thoughtful comments, and for making and sharing so many of my recipes this year!
Paint colour (dark wall) – Blue Note (Benjamin Moore)
Paint colour (white) – Distant Gray (Benjamin Moore)
French doors – Wrought Iron (Benjamin Moore)
Desk and two filing cabinets – Crate and Barrel
Blush rug – Pier 1 Imports
White shelf – Wayfair (discontinued)
Elsie desk chair – World Market
Floral storage boxes on shelf – HomeSense (Guess what’s inside? Toys!)
Two white faux leather chairs – Wayfair
Rose quartz slab (on desk) – Anthropologie
Basket – Zara Home
Grey mug – Crate and Barrel
Blush pillows – HomeSense
Dark floral pillow – The Bay
Large floral framed print – Minted
Prop shelf with dishes – Wayfair
Mirror – Zara Home
Profile art – Etsy
Desert scene art – Etsy
Taurus print – Etsy
Inhale Exhale print – Etsy
White vase on desk – HomeSense
Blush pouf/ottoman – Restoration Hardware
Pink vase – Anthropologie
Grey letter A – HomeSense
Pink “crystal” tealight holder – HomeSense
My parents make specific requests of my sister and me for our time home together over the Christmas holiday. My sister, now that she is Seattle’s Queen of Ice Cream (a title I’ve given her solely because she’s earned it) is tasked with bringing at least a dozen pints of ice cream on the plane with her from Seattle to Los Angeles. It seems like an arduous task that involves dry ice and for that we are all so so grateful. I show my deep appreciation by hiding a pint of her Lemon Bar Ice Cream in the back of the freezer in hopes that no one will dig it out for themselves.
I’ll be tasked with making a dessert – an old family classic like Texas Sheet Cake or my dad’s pie crusts. Much easier, it all requiring far less dry ice. This year I’m coming in strong with the doughnut game. Fresh fried, after church, Christmas morning doughnuts. (My mom is reading this and she’s into it – I already know.)
The only right thing to do will be to combine my sister’s ice cream with fresh fried doughnuts. The audacity to call this breakfast will be our Christmas gift to each other as we count our many many blessings.
Today, in lieu of ice cream, homemade cranberry jam.
We’ve got all sorts of doughnut options for you around here if these cranberry jammers are your deal:
Browned Butter Baked Doughnuts
A Recipe for Two Doughnut Twists
Banana Bread Baked Doughnuts
These doughnuts come together in three parts, but really – I promise, nothing is too complex:
- the doughnut dough is an everything-in-the-mixer kind of move after the yeast has been activated with a bit of warm water and a pinch of sugar.
I’ve experimented with a good number of gingerbread recipes in the years since I highlighted Regan Daley’s Black Sticky Gingerbread. There were single, double, and triple ginger gingerbreads. Cakes that were spice-kissed, and others with experience at first and second base. They’re all good, really. But hers is the one I keep coming back to when it counts. And because it has been hiding in the archives for so long, I thought I’d run my updated version today complete with tweaks, and fresh insights.
Back then, here’s what I said, “…The Black Sticky Gingerbread comes together like the cake that it is – straight-forward, unfussy, with a bit of kick and attitude. Melt the butter with the sweeteners, stir in a few eggs, fold in the fragrant spices and flour, spike it with some freshly grated ginger, and pour the batter into the prepared pan. The cake is outrageously dark, dense, flavorful, and delicious. Not the prettiest cake you’ll ever make, but one of the tastiest. The burnt-caramel-esque crust that forms on the top of the cake is outrageous, and that was the first part of the cake to go.”
It all holds true. I’d love to know if any of you give this a try over the holidays, or if you make any personalized tweaks to it! xo -h
I discovered this drink in The Auberge of the Flowering Hearth, a book I seem to reread every couple of years. Written by Roy Andries de Groot, it’s an ode to a charming auberge (inn), nestled in the French alps, where two women created magical meals for their guests. Like most meals in France, their menus began with an apéritif. One in the book was a glass of Dubonnet, with an equal amount of kirsch, topped off with a dash of soda water.
It was quite a drink, which I refashioned since after all that kirsch, I didn’t know how anyone could have made it through one of their multi-course dinners. At the auberge, each course had it’s own wine pairing (at lunch and dinner), such as the one that started the meal that followed this apéritif in the book, with included a Pork liver terrine, cream of tomato soup, a tourte (enclosed pastry tart) of wild boar à la crème, then three different kinds of cheeses, and—whew—a sweet, creamed fresh cheese for dessert. I don’t know about you, but I’m full just reading about it. And no wonder I’ve read this book so many times; it makes me hungry, and full, at the same time.
Continue Reading Cranberry Auberge cocktail…