Monday, July 7, 2014

A Stylish Work Space

I'm just sitting here at my desk paying bills and writing letters dreaming of a more beautiful work space.

Here are a couple of desks on my radar that can double as console tables and a stunning photograph of Jackie looking studios in her work space.  Don't you think her little office is beyond elegant?  

Which desk is your favorite?  I love them both!







 1 / 2

Happy Monday!

xo,

Kelly

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Southern Doors Dripping with Charm

While vacationing in Charleston, South Carolina I took a stroll down the famous Rainbow Row and found the most charming front doors.  Take a look at this stunning door knocker and ornate door handle I found...

Don't you just want to knock on these doors and ask to take a peek inside?  




More to come on Charleston in my next blog post.  I'm in love with this city!

xo

Kelly




Thursday, May 8, 2014

Wyebrook Farm Adventure

My husband and I took a country drive out to Wyebrook Farm last weekend with the kids.  We'd heard good things and thought the adventure was worth missing nap time, ya know the type.

Wyebrook Farm provides meats and produce to many of your favorite farm to table restaurants in Philly.  Getting a peek at the farm is a foodie's dream come true!

We pulled into the farm to find rolling green hills, rustic but chic barns, tiny pink piglets wagging their corkscrew tails and giant cows munching on grass.  You could hear the guitar and fiddle in the distance...My kids squealed with excitement and my husband gave me his look of approval.  Even a few meltdowns couldn't mess this up!

We spent the day hanging with the animals, browsing the market, watching the kids dance to the blue grass music and chowing down on the freshest country food.  Which included homemade whoopie pies for dessert!  We topped the day off by climbing up the treehouse overlooking the farm and taking turns on the tire swing.  Sigh.

Take a look at our pics and be sure to go and see what all the magic is about at Wyebrook Farm.  It's worth the trip!

Directions and Farm details here.

xo

Kelly











































Sunday, April 27, 2014

Creme Brûlée French Toast




Looking for a super simple make ahead brunch idea?  You've got to try my friend Ashley's Creme Brûlée French Toast!

It's like bread pudding and creme brûlée got married.  The sweet gooey topping perfectly compliments the cakey French toast.  

Your guests will think you were up all morning preparing brunch, but really it couldn't be simpler.  My favorite kind of dish - all the love but little work!

Ashley's Creme Brûlée French Toast

Ingredients:

2 Tablespoons honey (you could also use corn syrup)
1/2 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1 loaf Challah (any bread will do)
5 eggs
1 1/2 cups half and half
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon Grand Marnier
1/4 teaspoon salt

Directions:

In a small saucepan combine honey, butter and sugar.  Simmer until syrupy.  Pour into a 9x13 baking pan that has been sprayed with oil.  Pour the syrup into the baking pan.  Arrange thick bread slices on top of syrup.  Whisk remaining ingredients until blended.  Pour evenly over bread.  Let sit overnight covered in the refrigerator.  It will still work if you prepare it the day you bake it.  Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.  Let cool and cut into slices.  Serve syrup side up and top with fruit.

Happy Sunday!

xo

Kelly

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Decorating with Heirlooms


I absolutely cherish my family's history and any little charms that have been passed down to me through the generations.

My dear friend, Kate, picked up this book for me about decorating with keepsakes and collectibles.  


The picture posted at the top of this post is a pair of hand knitted booties sent to my mother-in-law from her grandfather in Monroe, Louisiana when she was born.  

Living with What You Love inspired me to pull the delicate booties out of storage and display this tiny slice of my children's southern heritage in our home.  

Do you feel the same way about your family's heirlooms?  What are some ways you are decorating with them?

Pick up the glass box from Nicole Miller Home at TJ Maxx and Living with What You Love at Amazon.

Enjoy your weekend!

xo

Kelly 


Sunday, April 20, 2014

The Perfect Easter


This Easter I nearly forgot to put out my kids' Easter baskets, and I think it's pretty great.

Easter preparations for years up until now meant perfect planning of Easter basket goodies, coordinating sweet Sunday outfits for my kids and endless time spent on my brunch menu.

A few weeks ago at church our pastor talked about how the week before Jesus died he washed his disciples' feet.  His message to them was that we need to take care of one another.  I've heard this message a hundred times but somehow this time it made an impression.

Now I have a billion kids, a dog and a husband, so I'm kind of stretched thin on doing for others.  But I made a big effort this week in little ways. 

Tonight I hosted a dinner for my siblings and parents.  I picked up a few toys, made meatballs and spaghetti from ingredients I thought would taste good together and called them to come over early.  I wanted to spend more time with my family and less time making things just so before they walked in the door.  Remember I'm totally Type A so I've never asked someone to come over early in my life.  I'm normally fluffing pillows and rearranging flowers up until the last minute.

We had so much fun together that I completely forgot about my kids' Easter baskets!  For the first time in ages the famous Easter basket was not the highlight of the holiday.

These past few weeks I've focused on taking care of the people in my life instead of wowing them with perfection, and it has made me heart feel full.  Finally, I think I found the secret to the perfect Easter.  Hope you can find it too!

xo,

Kelly





Sunday, March 23, 2014

Spring Cleaning Isn't What it Used to Be



No one loves spring cleaning more than me.  For years like since I was five it was crystal clear to me the items I did and did not need.  

Consign.  Donate.  Trash.  Organize the rest.  It's simple.

Well at least it used to be simple.  That was all before I had children.  Recently we moved our kids rooms around, and I had to go through yet another round of baby clothes and gear.  And shockingly - more and more things are landing in the keep pile.

Do I need 15 swaddle blankets?  No.  Do I need 8 gingham crib sheets?  Double No.  My kids don't even sleep in cribs anymore, yet here I am contemplating keeping crib sheets, sigh.

The years when my kids were infants were such a blur.  I didn't really believe they would ever sleep through the night or become independent so quickly.   If only I would have listened to my mother and the little old ladies in the grocery store that told me babies grow up in the blink of an eye.      

I miss the days of opening my son's closet to find soft blue smocked outfits and knit sweaters with hoodies.  Baskets of tiny socks and sun hats instead of shin guards and soccer socks.  

So what does this all mean?  It means this year's spring cleaning is going to require a new pile - the not quite ready to let go of pile. 

How about you...

What do you know you don't need but can't seem to let go of?









Wednesday, March 19, 2014

New Spring Herschel Supply Totes





Last weekend I went away for an overnight trip and threw all I needed for a night's stay in my Herschel Supply book bag.  When I travel alone, I keep my packing simple. It felt great to throw my bag on my back and go!

Check out Hershel Supply's fresh collection of spring totes and their new lookbook here.  They'll have you booking your spring break trip in no time!  

Happy 1st day of spring!

xo

Kelly


Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Matchbook Magazine


My current magazine obsession is the very charming Matchbook Magazine. It's full of fun fashion and decor ideas, worthy book recommendations, and up close and personal interviews with amazing people.  The best news is it's online AND it's free!

Check it out here.  Let me know if you love it as much as I do!

xo

Kelly

Friday, February 14, 2014

Come Waste Your Time with Me


For Valentine's Day I sent my husband the link to Dave Matthews and Trey Anastasio from Phish singing the song Waste.  The song's famous chorus...Come waste your time with me is one of my favorites.

If you're married with kids - you know the days of just kickin' it and hanging out are little to non-existent without a 5 page paper of family schedules and routines for the grandparents that is.

So my message to my husband is that if there was ever time in the day to waste, I'd want to spend it with him.

Happy Valentine's Day to you all! 

xo

Kelly

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Fun Temporary Tattoos

I've just about had it with the snow and the predictions of more snow.  So I'm distracting myself with the idea of getting a temporary tattoo.  Check out Tattly for some fun tat designs!

Which ones are your favorite?  I think I might start sending these to my girlfriends as Cabin Fever Gifts, ha!

Stay warm!

xo

Kelly












Monday, February 10, 2014

Words of Wisdom



Please share this with someone who could use some encouragement today!

xo

Kelly

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Valentine's Day Guide

I like my Valentine's Day gifts to be thoughtful, fun and even witty.  Check out my favorite picks for all the sweethearts in your life!

Links: 1/2/3/4/5/6/7

For the pretzel lover...



For your best friend that needs a laugh...



Take a pic of your baby in this onesie for your favorite auntie...



For your marriage - open some wine and listen to your favorite records...



For your kids and their buddies - a heart pencil with a handwritten love poem...



A special Valentine's breakfast for the fam...



For a romantic Valentine's dinner for two - forget cooking and get gourmet delivery...



And finally an e-card for everyone and anyone you want to feel loved...













Friday, February 7, 2014

The Coziest Wrap Sweater


It has been a LONG winter for me, and I recently splurged on this sweater for two reasons...

1.  I am cold.  A heavy wrap sweater is kind of like an acceptable robe to be worn around the house and on the town.

2.  Cabin Fever.  This winter we have lost power and been trapped inside more times than I can count.  I needed some retail therapy, big time.

Love it too?  It's on sale right now at Zappos.com.  

Stay warm!

xo

Kelly

Monday, February 3, 2014

Homemade Bread in 5 Minutes


One of my oldest friends another Jenna! started making her own bread and claimed it was so easy even I could do it.  

At the time I had 3 kids under 3.  I didn't have time to open a pack of pop-tarts let alone make my own bread!

Nonetheless, she sent me the link for the recipe...Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes.  I took one look and gave it a fat NO!

She insisted on coming over and giving me a personal bread making demonstration.  

To my surprise it was so easy that, yes, even I could do it!

You can try and follow the website's recipe or take a look at my step by step instructions with pictures below.  I tried to make it busy mom friendly.  

Ready to give it a try?  Check out my version of the recipe - I know you'll love it!

Artisan Bread Recipe

Tools: 
Deep bowl 
Plate
Clean dish towel
Sheet of parchment paper
Baking tray
Measuring cups and spoons

Ingredients:
1 tablespoon Active Dry Yeast
1 tablespoon salt
3 1/2 cups lukewarm water
6 1/2 cups all purpose flour

Directions:
In a deep bowl add the following ingredients...

1 tablespoon ACTIVE DRY YEAST


1 tablespoon of kosher salt


3 1/2 cups lukewarm water


Stir ingredients

Add 6 1/2 cups all purpose flour


Stir

Your dough will look like this...


Throw a clean dish towel over your bowl on the countertop for 2 hours.  I used to use 2 baby bibbs, ha!

It will rise and look like this...


Place a plate on top of your bowl of dough, but make sure it is not completely sealed.  Stick it in the frig until ready to bake.  Let it chill for about 1 hour. 

Place a layer of parchment on an oven tray and preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

After your dough has chilled, flour your hands and the top of your dough generously or it will be too sticky to pick up.

Pick up a softball sized slab of dough and tuck the edges under to form a loaf.  Take a serrated knife and make 3 quarter inch slices across the top of your loaf.

It should look something like this...


Let the unbaked loaf sit on the counter for about 15-20 minutes while the oven is  warming up.

After the loaf is done resting, stick it in the oven for 30 minutes or until the surface is golden.

See the pic at the top for a look of the finished product!

Let it is sit for 10-15 minutes before digging in.  

Repeat the process with the remaining dough the next time you are hungry for bread.  

The dough is good for about a week.  I've found the dough gets a little crunchy after that.