30 April 2010

{à table: angle food cake - lemon glaze}

It wouldn't be Friday without a little recipe or food inspiration from me!  As long I can remember, I've had Angel Food Cake for my birthday.  It's by far my favorite! So, what's more appropriate than a simple and sweet dessert for this week?

{The key to this below photo is to not look too hard.  My camera phone doesn't do the taste justice.}
To dress up the cake, I made a lemon glaze and topped it with some strawberries we had in the fridge. Mister was a bit worried that it wouldn't "satisfy"; however, after taking the first bite, he was convinced and after taking the last bite, he was happy that he didn't feel like he indulged too much.  Because let's be honest...cake isn't that friendly to a diet. 

This dessert was light, refreshing and delish!  A perfect idea for Mother's Day.  And, if you don't have time to bake a cake from scratch - just follow in Mister's footsteps.  Buy the cake and make a glaze.

Glaze -
1 C confectioner's sugar
4 Tbl fresh lemon juice
*mix together with a whisk until smooth

Drizzle glaze over cake and top with your favorite fruit (strawberries, raspberries, blueberries...)

{You can make any variation to the glaze by substituting organge juice, lime juice...and then adding fruit that would compliment!}

à table !

*In case you missed these food inspirations click on any of the following: mexican, fish, crepes, breakfast....happy kitchen time!

29 April 2010

{romantic inspirations}

Romantic, lovely....

I love these romantic accessories from Spool No.72.  I think that they would be the perfect accent to this warm Thursday!

Happy day, Lovelies!

28 April 2010

{hello, 29. pleased to meet you.}

It's my birthday! And though I don't generally shout that out, I can't help but take note of my last birthday in my 20's.

I've celebrated my birthdays in many places that I've lived, including Idaho, France, Oklahoma, Alaska, Washington and now Texas. (Oh, and even the hospital - as you can see below!)  I had my second birthday in the hospital after compound fracturing my femur.  Yikes!  The experience was much more traumatic for my parents, as I have no memory of the ordeal. But, grew up with a scar that proves what happened. Either way - my parents tried to make the day as special as possible.

Two years later, on my fourth birthday, I burst into tears! (And, this I COMPLETELY remember).  I was such a shy one, that when all the attention turned to me, I got completely overwhelmed.  My parents were so sweet to me and tried to console me.  (You can see my tears in the below photo.) Alas, I turned out okay... :)

And now, here I am...the last year of my 20's.    So - here's to celebrating in a new "home"!

Hope you're enjoying this lovely Wednesday!


27 April 2010


{J'aime looking through magazines and happening upon "Seattle".  This sign would surely be happy in our new Texas home...!}

{J'aime anything to help our new house, feel like a home.  I never tire of candles!}

{J'aime reflecting on memories.  One of my first experiences in France was at this dreamy carousel in Gérardmer}

I'm still in ESCAPE mode.  :)  Hope you're enjoying this Tuesday!



Daydreaming...when I should be focusing. Can you blame me? I sort of want to escape and bake something sweet in the below kitchen and then take a stroll in the garden. Though I love the company of friends, solitude happily suits me right now.

Ok...back to life!


26 April 2010

{happy monday}

It's my last week of work! I'm going to be busy wrapping up projects, training my replacement and once again...saying good-bye.  Oh...and it's my Birthday this week too!

Though I'll be hard at work, I'm sure to be distracted looking at this lovely bouquet of flowers that I received from my company.  The fragrance is perfectly sweet and drifting my way as I sit here... 

Happy Monday Lovelies!

23 April 2010

{à table: pancake party}

A few years ago, while planning my wedding, I came across a beautiful invitation stating a morning wedding time.  Since then, I've been in love with the idea of a morning wedding.  Morning sunlight, bird's chirping, breakfast served....all together dreamy.  I've brought this idea up to Mister (even recently) and he constantly can only think of how early everyone would have to get up in order to get ready. He has a point, but then again....after scouring the blogosphere this past week, my eyes happened upon a glorious scene...And, since I am married and won't be having another wedding, perhaps I should take a cue from these dreamy pics and plan a mid-morning pancake party. 

So....what do you think? Do you want to join me this weekend for a party?

à table and happy weekend!!

{photos from Daisy Pink Cupcake via Once Wed}

22 April 2010


One advantage to making your own products is the waste you reduce! Instead of running to the store (using gas and time), purchasing products/packaging that is going to end up in the trash, you can make a simple recipe, store the product in glass and thus save on waste. More than that though, you can control the sugar and junk that is going in each product. Let's be honest....sometimes we're not very kind to ourselves! Ultimately, by making even ONE product (be it food or a cleaning solution) we're being kind to us, our families and our environment.

One problem: often it is so convenient living "unkindly".  Taking the first step to living green can often feel daunting. But, two years ago, I discovered a gem while living in Alaska.  I purchased a book that I will get a lifetime of use out of: Reader's Digest HOMEMADE.

It's full of recipes for life!  Trust me.  It gives quick, simple and doable recipes.  The book covers nearly 400 commonly purchased foods, health/beauty products, cleaning solutions (including weed reducers - that are environmentally friendly)!

Here are some tips!

Eucalyptus oil (a power natural antiseptic) is an amazing stain remover! Moisten a rag and add a bit of oil.  Rub on stain (works particularly well on grease and perspiration).  Best if you rub from outer edge of stain to middle.  Et voila !

Open your drains (the non-toxic way)! Have you ever used a commercial drain-cleaner?  I have.  They stink, make my eyes burn and are highly toxic and corrosive.  Instead, pour a pot of boiling water or toss some baking soda followed by a 1/2 cup of vinegar down the drain. 

Rug cleaner Instead of using commercial "dry shampoos" for rugs, use baking soda.  It will gently remove dirt and deodorize. 

All purpose earth friendly liquid cleaner (P.S. the cost is under a $1 per bottle!)

What you need:

*32 oz. (around 950ml) spray bottle - try to use a bottle made from recycled materials, or is recyclable. My source recommends #2 plastic (For more info on Plastic, check out THIS post by PureModLife.


*White distilled vinegar. It should be vinegar made from grain or plant material. Believe it or not, some vinegar is synthesized from petroleum - yes, crude oil!

*Genuine lemongrass essential oil. Aside from helping to mask the vinegar odor (which dissipates naturally), Lemongrass has anti-bacterial properties. For increased disinfecting power, you can use Tea Tree oil which also has anti-viral and anti-fungal properties.

* Earth friendly dishwashing liquid. This can be found in just about any supermarket. The dishwashing liquid is necessary to clean mirrors and glass streak-free where commercial glass cleaners have been used previous. Many commercial window/glass cleaners have chemicals of a waxy nature in them; so when you switch to vinegar/water, there will be streaking unless you have the dish detergent in your cleaner. Once that build-up is gone, dishwashing liquid isn't necessary.

1. Fill bottle half with water
2. Top it up with white distilled vinegar, but leave a little room for the additional ingredients and for shaking
3. Add 10-14+ drops lemongrass essential oil.
4. Add 2-3 drops of the earth friendly dishwashing liquid.
5. Cap and shake. There should be a thin layer of foamy bubbles at the top - but not too many.
6. Label container clearly. Shake before using and store out of direct sunlight.

Windows, mirrors, floors, some carpet/clothing/upholstery stains, chrome, as a rinse after using baking soda, cleaning stainless steel and porcelain, to clean toilet area. Also cleans car windows/mirrors, door handles, and much more.

*Make sure not to use vinegar on Marble. :)

Happy Earth Day All!!

{info from: Amazon, Reader's Digest, cleaning solution recipe from HERE}

21 April 2010

{green strides}

Let's be honest.  The idea of winning a home {no matter one's opinion on decor} would be amazing.  So in honor of earth week I couldn't help but post the green home 2010.  I'm sure most all of you have seen it.  Admittedly, the first year they had a home, I entered daily, this year, I have yet to even try. That being said, I have admired the idea of having a home in New England {it would be a dream of mine to move there one least for a short while}.  I think it would be quite easy to live green in the below home, but I may have to purge most of the red found around the house {a bit too much for me...and if you're wondering, I didn't post the 'red' pics}!

But, living a green life doesn't have to commence with winning a glorious green home. It can start anywhere, anytime and with anyone.  This year, my biggest green act was to plant a garden.  It's already started to save us some money, but more importantly, will help cut down on trips to the store, as we like to eat fresh as much as possible.  Secondly, Mister and I switched from tupperware to glass storage.  {And we LOVE it!!  So much easier for re-heating food and plus, it cleans up much better.}

So what about you?  Have you made any green changes this year? {Or do you want to?} Would love to hear your thoughts!


Happily living green from our rental! ;)

{images from hgtv}


Today, I'm loving salvaged wood.

Happy and beautiful Wednesday, Lovelies!!



{Images from l'atelier 154, last two House Beautiful}

20 April 2010

{julia's kitchen wisdom}

My mom is one of my best friends.  She has always been one of my biggest supporters {what are mom's for?!} and I can easily bounce ideas and life off of her.  She instilled a love for France/French in me at a very young age and though she didn't know it, taught us to live and eat organically.  She's an inventive cook and I'm constantly inspired by her ability to just 'whip something up'.  She's often looks at restaurant meals and thinks, "I can just make that myself".  Now, I tend to do the same thing. 

One love my mom passed on to me is a love for Cookbooks!  I love collecting all sorts{though need to maybe use them more}!

 I have several that I'm  currently reading through right now.  This week, I'm loving Julia's Kitchen Wisdom by our dear Julia Child. 

This small quick reference book that is full of gems! It's peppered with recipes, but more than that, fantastic techniques. 
{Ohhhh! I have so much to learn!!}

When you look through it, you'll find tips on soups, dressings, braising, roasting, breads, souffles and the list goes on. 

Check it out and you're sure to step up your skills, no matter what level you're at!

Happy kitchen times!


{meerkat love}

So, not to sound like a crazy, but Mister and I have a thing for Meerkats. We got hooked on the show: Meerkat Manor.  Then after relocating, we heard that they would be touring at our local zoo.  So...we had to go.  They're so funny and small.  Here's a quick pic I snapped with my phone. Haha. How funny are they?!

Anyway, I was was pleasently surprised when I was looking on Esty and found this Meerkat Planner (guess I'm not the only one out there who's facinated with these little guys...)!

Have any of you ever seen that show?

19 April 2010

{monday inspires}

I'm inspired to tend to my garden today.  What are you inspired to do?

Happy Monday Lovelies!

{image via Apartment Therapy}

18 April 2010

{à table: à la mexican}

I didn't do much cooking this past week.  Mister was gone and really, what I was to do with all the food? But when he walked in the door late Friday, he was glad that I was ready to start creating! Saturday I had fun trying a bunch of new recipes and variations on some faves.  It was dinner à la mexican.  I knew that Mister would be happy as it's his favorite food to eat. 

We love tacos.  Sometimes I make them "American-style" with lettuce and all the trimmings, but lately have been inspired by what we find here in "almost-Mexico".  We didn't have any carne asada (Mister's favorite), but the ground beef was perfectly dressed with grilled onions, tomatoes, fresh avocado and of course cilantro.  Add some fresh radishes on the side, and the meal is satisfying!  As I was in the mood to create, I made up some homemade stuffed jalapenos (a recipe that I learned a few weeks ago when visiting friends for Easter) and a vegan bean dip.  YUM!

à table !

I hope you are enjoying your weekend.  We are taking ours quite easy as poor Mister walked over 40 miles in less than a three day period just before coming home.  He's stuffing his belly and resting up for the week ahead.  Even though we're pretty much house-bound, it's been an awesome couple of days. 

Do you have anything going on this weekend?!

Enjoy today, Lovelies!!

16 April 2010

{under $20 fave}

I've mentioned this BEFORE, I have a lot of favorite kitchen items.  Lately, I've been very happy for my Pampered Chef Garlic Press!  {I think it's so funny how I find such joy in something, such as a salad spinner or garlic press....} I love fresh garlic, but am not a fan of mincing and stinking up my fingers.  This press does it all: put it in whole and it will peel, crush and mince.  Love it {and it's under $20}!!

Do you have any favorite kitchen items?

Interested in purchasing? Click below!

15 April 2010

{happy birthday, sis!}

Happy birthday to my beautiful sister, Amber!!  I haven't seen her sweet face since my wedding (so we're in need of some updated pics...!)  Since then, she's been married had a beautiful baby, landed an amazing job and is now moving this weekend.  Busy gal!
{Me, Amber}

{Here's all the siblings + the love of my life... Amber, Liberty, Me, Mister, Suzette, Jonathan}

I love and miss you so much my dear sister!!  xx,

13 April 2010

{perfect writing desk}

My dear Mister is out in the field training....again.  So, what have I been up to? Shopping online or 'screen' shopping, rather.  {Would 'screen' shopping be the equivalent to 'window' shopping? Well, I guess for my purposes, it is.}  

Since moving into our new place, I have been looking for some key pieces {and by key pieces, I'm specifically talking about a small desk}.  Mister and I have searched and searched, but I haven't been satisfied....that is...until now!  I just found the perfect writing desk (though a too much $$ - ugh!).  Either way, I fell in love with this Etsy perfection.

Hope you are having a lovely week!

08 April 2010

{à table: granola}

As I mentioned HERE, I have started a series, à table

For this week....I wanted to share this amazing granola recipe! The source is from Alicia's Silverstone's book, The Kind Diet.  {Which is also linked on the right, as one of my current reads.} Don't get me started on her book.  It's fantastic!  I loooove the recipes, and even more than that, I'm further convinced about certain foods.  If you read it, be warned that it's pro-vegan, but you'll love the recipes throughout! And...there are plenty vegetarian options that would compliment any meal. 

Though I'm a self-proclaimed slacking pescetarian, and in all honesty could be easily convinced to full vegetarian status, this blog is not meant to push specific eating habits on you, but rather inspire you to make yummy food, right in your own kitchen!  And with that, I segue into this yumminess....{dressed with Almond Milk} :)

Mom's Granola - Makes 2 Quarts

6C quick-cooking oats
1/2 C maple sugar
3/4 wheat germ
1/2C shredded coconut
1/2C sesame or sunflower seeds
1C chopped nuts or raisins (*I did 1/2 and 1/2)
1/2 C safflower oil
1/3 C maple syrup (sweetest version) or brown rice syrup (slighly milder)
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees

*Spread the oats on a rimmed baking pan, and bake for 10 minutes.  Transfer the oats to a large mixing bowl, and add the sugar, wheat germ, coconut, seeds, and nuts or raisins. Stir to mix well, then add the oil, syrup, and vanilla extract.  Mix until everything is moistened.

*Spread half of the mixutre on each of the 2 rimmed baking sheets (or bake in 2 batches), and bake for 10 minutes.  Stir after 5 minutes to brown evenly.

*Let the baked granola cool, then transfer it to a bowl and sitr until crumbly.  Store in an airtight container.

à table and bon appétit !

{Seriously - this is a fantastic, yummy granola that even the husband and kids will love.  And, it makes a bunch!!  So, no need to pay $4 - $5 for a small box of store bought granola that's full of refined sugar and other no-need ingredients!}

07 April 2010

{under $20 fave}

I have lots of fun kitchen gadgets that I love.  In fact, every week I pretty much declare one of them my favorite.  This week it's my salad spinner.  *Sigh* 

It's fantastic.  I know most people have a salad spinner, but I just got it.  Literally...this picture, is the first time that I used it.  AND...I got it for $16.  For some reason, I thought it would be much more, but nope.  (And, that's why I bought it...even though I wasn't out shopping for one. hehe) I'm not sure how I lived without one for so long, since we pretty much have salad every other (if not every) dinner.

Great life saver!!

{For those of you wondering...I purchased a small Zyliss Salad Spinner.}

05 April 2010

{weekend inspiration}

There's something happy about dirty gardening gloves. They provoke a sense of accomplishment and pride...

I purchased one of the cutest pairs I've ever owned from Target - London Liberty Collection and they definitely inspired me this weekend. {On that note - I claim to be a marketer's dream!! If something is cute or appealing in any way, I pretty much want to buy it....even if it has no relation to my current interests or needs. Yes, that's right...a marketer's dream. Market it right, and I'll find a reason to "want" it.} Either way, when I saw these gloves, I knew I needed them in order to properly tend to my garden.

Here is some of what I did this weekend...

I've planted herbs in the past and tomatoes, but never lettuce, garlic, shallots, onions, strawberries and a few other treasures.  And, next weekend I plan to add a few more things. So -- here's hoping that I can keep things growing in this sunny, sunny, sunny weather!
Happy lundi (Monday)!


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