Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Homemade French Orange Madeleines

Hello Friends,

Did you survive the Jonas Blizzard of 2016?  Here in the Raleigh area, we experienced ice more than snow and very little accumulation.  Since ice is so dangerous to drive on, I just stayed around the house.  

It was so cold here in the South and was just perfect to stay indoors in pjs, slippers and being cozy by the fireplace.  It was the ideal time to make homemade soups and do some extra baking.  

Recently while shopping at one of my favorite stores, HomeGoods, I spotted a Madeleine baking pan and have always wanted to make the classic treats.  While vacationing in Paris, I was spoiled by eating them along with some other French bakery favorites.  Yes, PARIS has the best patisserie's around!

Have you ever tried a Madeleine?  They are so easy to make.  There was a recipe included on the back of the pan that I bought.  They remind me of a spongecake and are very light and also addictive!


2/3 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup butter, melted and cooled
2 eggs
1/2 teaspoon orange extract
1/2 teaspoon grated orange peel
1 cup powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350.  Spray pay with Pam or similar non-stick spray.  Sift together flour and baking powder in small bowl.  Set aside.   In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat effs, orange extract and orange peel on high speed for 5 minutes.  Gradually beat in powdered sugar.  Beat another 5 minutes or until thick.

Gently fold in flour mixture, then melted butter.  Mix until smooth.  Spoon the mixture into the cups, filling about 3/4 full.  Bake approximately 8 minutes or until edges are lightly brown.  Cool in the pan around 1-2 minutes.  Loosen cookies with a knife, then insert pan on a rack.  When cool, sprinkle the tops with powdered sugar.

Have you done any bake lately?

Friday, January 8, 2016

2015 In Review

Hello!  Happy New Year!

I love the month of January when you have the chance to look back at the year behind us.  It was mostly a busy year with house hunting in North Carolina, packing up our rental and finally making the move.  I actually moved into our new home the first week of September.  Moving is not one of my favorite things to do, however, I am finally getting settled and actually love where I live.  My neighbors are so nice and more outgoing than where I was living in SC.

Around the home, I have not really completed many projects.  My home is fairly new and it was in excellent condition when we purchased it.  Eventually there will be projects that I will want to tackle but at this time nothing really is needed.  The only project that I worked on was repainting the powder room so far.  See post here.  I am very pleased on the paint color decision and would highly recommend it if you are looking for a new paint color in your home.  There are other projects that are in the works but nothing that is so crucial to be done!  I am in the midst of working on my bedroom furniture -- just unsure if I want to repaint what I already have or look for new (not store bought new but vintage style) for my bedroom.  I am actually back and forth on painting the furniture as I am not a lover of painted furniture.  Hope to share my bedroom in another upcoming post.

In May of 2015, I vacationed in Berlin and Prague. If you missed the post see here and here.  It was so beautiful and would go back in a heartbeat.  Now I am looking forward to our next getaway.  So many choices to choose from!

During the holidays, I worked at a small family antique business right around the corner from where I lived.  It was great getting out to meeting people and actually buying things for my home from the shop.  It is one of my favorites in Raleigh.

I really don't make resolutions for the New Year, however I have started a membership at a gym which is located right in my neighborhood.  How is that for convenience?  I love it because I can run there and it is open 24 hours.  I have been running for over three years now and have to say I really like it.  I wanted to join the gym to work on free weights for muscle strengthening.

One other subject I would like to learn more about is my Adobe Photoshop Elements 12 program.  I love it so far but it is a huge learning curve for me!!

Well that is my 2015 yearly recap.  How about your 2015 review?

Have a wonderful weekend.

Monday, December 28, 2015

My Powder Room is Finally Complete Before and After

Hello There,

Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas with family and friends!

Yes my powder room is finally complete, well almost complete!  Here is a before and after of the powder room.  It was actually hard to photograph due to size but I think you can see what was done. Again, very little money had to be spent since our home is fairly "NEW" and I had many bathroom accessories on hand.

 I still need to purchase the light fixture over the pedestal.  It will be my first DIY for installing a light fixture.  Here is a photo of the light that I have decided on.

The original mirror was replaced with a black rectangle mirror which I already had in my last home.
The original paint in the room was a off white and I painted it with Benjamin Moore Palladian Blue. I am in love with the color - such a warm and calm color!  Some of the photos are not the true color -- the color is so perfect for this room...... There is also a small window in the powder room that brings in beautiful morning light!

I used black framed artwork to match the black mirror over the pedestal that I also had on hand. Mostly prints were ordered from Etsy and they bring back memories from our trip to Paris.

I added the wooden step stool for my extra towels. The enamel pitcher is filled with fresh Cypress.  I bought the stool at one of my favorite antique stores near me.  It is actually right around the corner from me and I have been helping out during the holidays.  They also carry Miss Mustard Seed paint and MMS actually visited the store over Thanksgiving weekend.


I love the end result and it is amazing what a little paint can do to a room!  Don't you agree?


Handtowel - Pottery Barn
Rug - HomeGoods
Light - Lowes
Paint - Benjamin Moore - Palladian Blue

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Merry Christmas

I wanted to wish a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all my FB Friends and blogging friends!

Here are some snapshots of Christmas around my house this year.  

I added a new pillow to my Pottery Barn sofa.  My wooden bakery crate was filled with my German white feather trees and a glass dish filled with vintage ornaments.  A new red and green throw from HomeGoods was also a new purchase for the year.

Another German feather tree on top of my Marshall Brinton drop leaf table.  The cross stitch table runner was made by me when I was a teenager.

Added some of my Misfit Toy collection to my vintage French Market Basket.

A velvet stocking and my favorite twig reindeer given to me by my great friend, Ms. Jane added to my vintage caned chair

Front door adorned with a Trader Joe's wreath.  I added a new bow to it.... My door mat was a previous Pottery Barn purchase that I had used at my other home in Beaufort, SC.

Green chippy chair with vintage green stool fit into the Christmas colors......

I bought the fresh boxwood and added it to the galvanized pail along with silver tinsel tree pieces.

Merry Christmas to you and your family!

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Red and Green Tablescape

Hello There,

Hope all is well.  I guess you are all busy with trimming the tree, decorating and baking!  Well, I am about to finish up baking over the weekend and I am calling it DONE!

I did very little Christmas decorating this year.  Today I wanted to share my red and green tablescape in my dining room.  I can't believe I have been in my new home for almost four months now.

Do you see the red and green ball ornaments above?  They are actually salt and pepper shakers! Aren't they adorable?

I added a breadboard to the center of the table with fresh Cypress and silver painted pine cones.  

I used white plates from Crate and Barrel and topped them off with a green salad plate.  Red napkins from World Market with a silver reindeer napkin holder.

I love the red and green look, it reminds me so much of CHRISTMAS!

My mirror in the room was topped off with a new BE MERRY sign that I recently found at HomeGoods!

I added the jingle bell star to the mirror!

This is one of my favorite holiday purchases this year - Santa and little boy on a blue Vespa!  I just love it and knew I had to have it!  I recently found it at HomeGoods.  I love how it is located about 1/2 mile down the road from me.

I hope you have a lovely weekend!

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Hello Charleston

I spent some time over the weekend celebrating my husband's birthday in Charleston.  It is always so nice to go back to one of my favorite cities.  I used to live only over one hour from Charleston when I lived in SC. Now it takes me about four hours but well worth it!

We had a great time of celebrating the birthday at one of my husband's favorites, Husk.  Couldn't resist ordering one of my favorite dishes there, Shrimp and Grits.  It is not your typical dish consisting of shrimp, scallions and bacon poured over grits.  This delicious entree was presented with grits and smoky tomato and pepper broth with field peas and shrimp.  Their grits are so creamy, too!

I love swooning over the historic homes and shopping at some of my favorite boutiques.  There was actually some holiday shopping done and some of it checked off of my shopping list which is always a good thing!

It was nice visiting Charleston close to Christmas, there were so many beautiful wreaths on the front doors and gates of the homes.  (I was able to photo some!)

Thanks so much Charleston for the lovely hospitality and wonderful birthday celebration!  I will be back soon to visit you again!


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