Friday, November 30, 2012

Gift Guide: For Her

A handy magnetic purse light so she can always find what's she's looking for in her tote.

An enamel locket with a favorite photo tucked inside.

A box of lip crayons.
from Kate Spade

A limited edition grab bag of holiday goodies.
from Of a Kind

A lotion set to soothe dry winter skin.
from QVC

Want more gift ideas?
See the rest of the 2012 holiday gift guides here
See last year's holiday gift guides here

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Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Target & Neiman Marcus Holiday Collection

In honor of the 50th anniversary of the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA), Target and Neiman Marcus have teamed up to create an amazing collection of items from 24 different designers. The collection launches on December 1st (this Saturday) online and in stores at both Target and Neiman Marcus.

This collection is full of beautiful items, and they would all make amazing gifts this holiday season (or they would also make an amazing treat for yourself). You can view the full collection and learn more about the designers here, but I have picked a few of my favorite items to share.

Tracy Reese dessert plates

Band of Outsiders cookie cutters

Carolina Herrera pouches

Jason Wu ornaments

Marc Jacobs scarf

Oscar de la Renta tote

Proenza Schouler sweatshirt

Rodarte giftwrap

Tory Burch thermos

What do you think? Will you be picking up anything from Target's newest designer collaboration?

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Monday, November 26, 2012

Gift Guide: For the Bookworm

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving!

And with Thanksgiving behind us, it is all steam ahead to the winter holidays! Chanukah begins on the evening of December 8th this year, Kwanzaa begins on the 26th, and of course Christmas is on the 25th. This makes it the perfect time to start my holiday gift guides. I've picked up a few gifts so far, but am nowhere near done yet. Have you started your holiday shopping yet?

A gorgeous poster made up of text from their favorite book.
From postertext.

A book about books! Specifically the ideal bookshelves of different celebrities.
From Amazon

A cozy scarf printed with classic book excerpts. The seller occasionally takes custom orders (I ordered a custom one a couple months ago and absolutely adore it, and I get tons of compliments on it)
From Storiarts.

An elegant book necklace made from re-purposed leather.
From Re-Imagined by Luna.

A bottle of cologne that smells like a paperback book.
From Amazon

A membership to BookSwim. Think netflix, but for books.
From BookSwim.

Want more gift ideas?
See the rest of the 2012 holiday gift guides here
See last year's holiday gift guides here
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Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy (early) Thanksgiving everyone! I hope the holiday is restful and happy for all.

Now 3 questions for you all:
What are you thankful for?
What is your favorite Thanksgiving food?
And, are you venturing out for Black Friday shopping?

a friend of mine shared this with me years ago, and I have no clue where she got it, but it still makes me laugh.
 If you know where it's from, please let me know so I can give credit :-)

Thanksgiving traditions across America
Seveneteen varieties of pumpkin pie
The Veggieducken (the vegetarian answer to the Turduckhen)
What kids are thankful for this year
85 years of the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade
Interactive Thanksgiving from Plimoth Plantation
Thanksgiving and Friends

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Monday, November 19, 2012

Pecan Coconut Brownies

There's not much to say about the awesomness of brownies. I like mine kind of chewy, ridiculously chocolate, and with something crunchy on top (never frosting for me). These brownies are really amazing.

Pecan Coconut Brownies (adapted from Cook's Illustrated)
1/2 cup peacans, chopped
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1 1/4 cups cake flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
6 ounces unsweetened chocolate, finely chopped
12 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 1/4 cups sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla

Preheat oven to 325. Toast pecans for about 5 minutes, until fragrant. Meanwhile grease a 13x9 baking dish.

Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt to combine; set aside.

Melt chocolate and butter together in a large bowl set over almost-simmering water, or in the microwave on 30 second installments, stirring in between. Remove chocolate from microwave when a few lumps still remain, stir until compltetely smooth.

Gradually whisk the sugar into chocolate mixture. Then add eggs one at a time, mixing thoroughly after each addition. Whisk in vanilla. Then add in flour mixture in three additions, folding it in with a rubber spatula.

Pour batter into the prepared pan. Sprinkle the top with the pecans and coconut. Bake until a toothpick comes out mostly clean (just a few crumbs); about 40 minutes.

this recipe can also be found at some of my favorite food blog hops

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Friday, November 16, 2012

FOUND Magazine

I just recently discovered FOUND Magazine. They document found stuff: from displaced notes to doodles to ticket stubs. I am in love with this idea of ephemera being turned into a more permanent medium. Their website also features daily find submissions. Take a minute to look through their site or order one of their magazines, it's all fascinating, and kind of addictive.

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Wednesday, November 14, 2012


Photographer Ernie Button has a habit of playing with his food, but when he does it he makes amazing scenes out of different varieties of breakfast cereal. It's really amazing. See the complete portfolio of Cerealism here.

Bales of Shredded Wheat


Clover Patch

French Toast Crunch Canyon

Grape Nuts Dune

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Monday, November 12, 2012

Cranberry Butter

When I came across a recipe for cranberry butter on bon appetit, I knew I'd have to try it. I made a smaller batch and added more maple syrup to mine. It's a truly delicious spread with a touch of sweetness.

I think this would make a perfect light breakfast on thanksgiving morning with some warm, fresh english muffin bread.

Cranberry Butter (adapted from bon appetit)
1 cup fresh cranberries
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 stick unsalted butter, softened

Combine cranberries and maple syrup in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally until the berries have cooked down to a jam-like consistency. Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature.

Combine softened butter and cooled cranberries together in a bowl and mix until completely combined.

this recipe can also be found at some of my favorite food blog hops

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Thursday, November 8, 2012

Harrod's Holiday Windows

Disney princesses are taking center stage this year in the holiday windows at Harrod's. Different designers have taken on the classic figures and given them a modern twist. They're truly enchanting and lovely.

They began with some amazing concepts (these are just a few of my favorites, go here to see them all)...

Cinderella by Versace

Aurora by Elie Saab

Tiana by Ralph & Russo

And turned them into completely magical displays (again, just a few of my favorites, you can view all the finished displays here)...

Jasmin by Escada

Ariel by Marchesa

Mulan by Missoni

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Tuesday, November 6, 2012


Happy Election Day to all of my readers in the States! I hope everyone has or is planning to get to the polls to vote (I went this morning).

No matter who you want to win this year, it's so important to cast your ballot. Not sure where to vote or what you'll be voting on? Go here and fill out your address, Google will tell you where your polling station is along with what races and referenda are happening in your district.

my proud, stickered lapel

Ten presidential food favorites
Delicious and adorable donkey and elephant chocolates
Cupcakes for president t-shirt
Blue vs. Red, what books Americans are reading
A pair of election themed Toms
Bliss presidential body lotion in "mint Romney" or "Obama orange"

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Monday, November 5, 2012

Curried Sweet Potato Soup

This is a perfect fall soup. It can easily be vegetarian (vegetable stock) or even vegan (vegetable stock and a butter substitute or olive oil). Using pumpkin instead of sweet potato would also be a great variation.

Curried Sweet Potato Soup
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 large onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons curry powder
1 1/2 pounds of sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
2 cups vegetable or chicken stock
1 cup coconut milk (unsweetened, first press)
optional topping: plain greek yogurt (or sour cream), finely sliced green onions

Melt butter in a dutch oven over medium heat. Add onions and sauté until lightly browned, then add garlic and sauté for a few minutes to cook out the rawness. Add in curry powder and stir until well combined and cook for a minute more.

Stir in broth. Bring to a boil and add in sweet potato cubes. Cook until sweet potato is tender, about 25 minutes. Use an immersion blender (or you can use a potato masher if you want a bit of texture or don't have a blender) to purée the soup until smooth. Once smooth, reduce heat, stir in coconut milk and simmer for 10-15 minutes.

Top with greek yogurt (or sour cream if you like) and green onions.

this recipe can also be found at some of my favorite food blog hops

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Thursday, November 1, 2012

The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap 2012

With it now being November, it's time to start thinking about the holidays (so says the Target Christmas commercial I saw last night). And with the holidays brings The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap. I had a blast participating last year, and was really excited when the announcement showed up in my email box recently.

This year there is a great addition to the swap; the swap has partnered with Cookies for Kid's Cancer, so our cookies are supporting a really amazing cause.

Signups are open until Monday, November 5, so don't miss out!

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