When it comes to dining room chandeliers, less is more is my approach. I’ve learned my lesson with glass chandeliers. We have a very simple one in our entry and it takes a lot of work to keep it sparkling. I love the look of lanterns for the kitchen and dining room, but keeping them clean would drive me crazy. For the dining room I wanted something big, but super simple. Serena & Lily has a few of my favorites. The best part is that they range in price from about $250 to $500.
Friday Link Love – Here are a few of my favorite new things I discovered this week or have been meaning to share for a while now. And when I say new, I mean like I discovered it on instagram a few hours ago.
Outdoor lighting is one of the first things I address when we move into a new house. My feeling is that lighting indoors and out is one of the most important features you can add to your home. Are you are getting your house ready for the Spring real estate market or just updating your nest? Here are my favorite outdoor light fixtures from Barn Light Electric. I’ve talked about them before in this post. What I love about Barn Light Electric is their commitment to quality. There are a lot of similar products on the market, but there is no comparison in my opinion. We used the Atomic Industrial Guard Sconce on the side of our garage. As I mentioned in the previous post, our detached garage is in our backyard. We added a portico and the sconce to give it more of a guest cottage look.
Honeycrisp Hasselback apples. Need I say more? Hasselback potaotes were my favorite, but now it’s Hasselback apples. We used Honeycrisp apples because we LOVE them. Granny Smith apples would be good too. We made individual ones in these cute Anchor Hockingmini pie dishes because everything is better when it’s in its own dish, right? Super easy to make and not so much of a recipe as much as a combination of ingredients. The amount of course depends on how many apples and how healthy you want them to be. So we took a less is more approach with the syrup, brown sugar and butter.
National Shortbread Day? Who knew that was a thing? I only know because I saw it on World Market’s Social Media this morning. We were hoping for a snow day or at least a delay, but no luck. Not enough snow.
Shortbread cookies are the easiest thing to make with just a few ingredients. Butter (obviously), sugar, flour, vanilla and a tiny bit of salt. I call these Lorna’s Shortbread cookies because my friend Lorna would always make the dough and shape it into long rectangles and carefully wrap in plastic wrap and then leave them in our freezer. Whenever someone came over I could take one out and slice and bake. They are perfect with a cup of tea. I think I’ll make these for my friends at Valentine’s Day, but instead of baking them I’ll give them just like Lorna left them in our freezer. That way they can make them whenever they feel like having a treat. They save for months if placed in a freezer bag. Here’s an old post that you can find here. You can also find the recipe here.
Make a DIY pomegranate bird feeder in just a few minutes. Madeline and I made ours with a few bruised pomegranates we had left over from the holidays. We see quite a few cardinals in our yard and I thought a bird feeder might make them stick around a little while longer. Now I realize we are probably feeding more squirrels than birds—but we are going to give it a try.
Slice the pomegranate in half and scoop out the flesh leaving a thick edge to support the cord or twine. Then pierce four holes about 1/2″ from the top with a sharp object. (we used the tip of a meat thermometer). String the cord through one hole to another and tie at the top. Repeat with the second two holes. Fill with bird seed, hang from a branch and wait for the birds to discover it. This post inspired by the Orange Bird Feeder my friend Sheri Silver made a few years ago. Thanks Sheri, you always inspire me!
If you’ve come over from our Serena & Lily Giveaway on Instagram–welcome! Here’s how I use my new South Seas Side Cart and keep reading to see how Brooke and Cait use theirs! Around the holidays I love to have people stop by–day or evening I can easily prepare a coffee or drink station with my new bar cart from Serena & Lily. Having a designated piece of furniture that can be moved from one room to another and not have to worry about clearing something off, makes it easy to quickly assemble for a gathering. I set up a coffee and tea bar using my nespresso for the coffee and a large S’well bottle holds hot water for tea. A few homemade goodies or even store bought treats from Trader Joe’s makes it festive. In a small house it’s easier to have drinks set up in one room and food on the kitchen island.
When I have bloggers over I use my custom stamps from Casey Rubber Stamps for a latte to go. It’s the little things.
I worked with Tinyprints again this year for our Christmas card. They have the most beautiful holiday and Christmas photo cards. Tinyprints makes it so easy to upload your photo to see how it would look with the cards you like. I’m always pleased with the options they have. The last few years we used Letterpress. This year I went to the site completely open minded. I used a photo from Summer vacation–and I never do that, but it did make the whole experience a lot less stressful. Tinyprints lets you upload your photo, personalize the message and then get a proof.
You can play around with photos and really feel like you are designing your card with all the options they offer. Options I chose for our card: Rounded corners, Premium DoubleThick Matt and photos on both sides. Remember the days when you had the perfect vertical photo, but the only cards you liked were cards for a horizontal photo? Tinyprints has a card for every photo and every budget.
Even the envelopes are a standout at tinyprints. I went with this one with a return address on the back in the same lovely handwritten font. To make the envelopes extra special we chose to add a liner. If you haven’t ordered your cards yet, tinyprints is offering 30% off everything with the code: HOLLYJOLLY. And if you order today and select expedited shipping, you can get your cards by December 23rd.
I’ve talked about JORD Wood Watches before and, you know what, we still love them. Madeline and I have the Fieldcrest Series in Maple. Mine is slightly larger and Madeline’s is a small watch, perfect for women. I tend to like to wear a larger watch. Both watches have held up beautifully. This time I decided to let my son choose one. He was actually way more interested that I thought. I guess I don’t give him enough credit. He chose the Reece Series in Walnut and Navy. And to make them even better– Jord is offering engraving on the back of the watch or on the really cool wood box. We went with the engraving on the back of the watch. It makes it a great gift. It arrived just in time to wear to a few college interviews and I think it gave him a little extra confidence. There’s something old school about a watch and an interview. This watch looks great with a nice starched shirt–or with t-shirt. So here’s your chance for a gift card towards the purchase of a Jord Timepiece. And–there’s still time to have it engraved. Not a lot of time remaining, so hurry! Check it our here!