Say Cheese

Yesterday I hosted a small gathering to celebrate my sister’s birthday. I used mini wooden bread boards (that I got from my friend) and made individual cheese boards. The boards had sharp cheddar, brie, seasoned cashews (from this week’s Thai Chicken dish), olives, apple slices, crackers, olive bread, and rosemary garnish. For lunch I served three different salads (Mediterranean Quinoa, Italian Chopped, and Nectarine Fennel & Arugula). Drinks consisted of Skinny Margaritas, Mimosa’s, and mint iced tea. I decorated with colorful Gerber Daisies and spread Turkish towels (these make a great gifts) around the yard. It was a fun way to celebrate my sister’s birthday.

Hope everyone has a nice long weekend!

XOXO

Julie

A-Jar

Over the weekend I put together floral arrangements for a small outside gathering. I used distressed painted mason jars in bright colors for the vases. Painted mason jars are my go to when doing colorful floral arrangements. Click here to learn how to make them at home. I picked up greenery and florals at Trader Joe’s and was able to create a beautiful table setting that was simple and easy to execute. It went perfectly with the boho picnic vibe we were were trying to achieve.

Materials for Painting Mason Jars

Have fun!

XOXO

Julie

Back to School

Back to school shopping looks a bit different this year for my girls. Less about clothing and sneakers and more about the best set up for at home learning. Both girls have desks from West Elm (this one & this one), along with this comfy chair. Other room upgrades include a new chandelier (& this one), table lamp, drawer organizer set, bulletin board, personalized memo paper, faux fur seat cushion, and candle.

Wishing everyone’s children a great start to the school year!

XOXO

Julie

Grass Fed

We have been spending a lot more time dining al fresco in our backyard. With that being said, I love the seagrass/rattan trend hitting tabletops and I’ve selected some of my favorite pieces below.

  1. Serena & Lily Pitcher & Highball.
  2. Rattan Round Placemat Serena & Lily, $28.
  3. Cabo Woven Placemat Serena & Lily, $28.
  4. Cabo Woven Runner Serena & Lily, $68.
  5. Rattan Beach Chair Etsy, $159.
  6. Blue Rim Seagrass Set of Six Placemat Pottery Barn, $89.
  7. Tata Round Charger Plates Pottery Barn, $16.
  8. Round Handwoven Hyacinth Placemat Pottery Barn, $16.
  9. Summerland Lantern Serena & Lily, $228.
  10. Sabre Bistro Vintage Cutlery Set Jenni Kayne, $105.

We had friends over for dinner last night. I made Vietnamese Rice Wraps for appetizers and Bahn Mi bowls for dinner. It was an easy meal to throw together that everyone loved. Have a great weekend!

XX

Julie

 

 

Backyard Bash

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Over the weekend we celebrated my parent’s 70th birthday with an intimate backyard dinner. As for many of us, our celebratory plans have had to change and we are coming up with new ways to commemorate special milestones.

We decided to create a memorable backyard bash. I set up a long table in our backyard and enlisted the help of my friend Dana from Serendipity Flowers LA to handle the flowers and table decor. She made it look so beautiful with florals, greenery, and candles. We had a separate seating area set up for appetizers and cocktails (FYI Joans on Third has individual cheese platters that are COVID friendly). It was a group effort with my older daughter making a gorgeous crudités platter adorned with edible flowers, my younger daughter making a two tier coconut layer cake, and my sister creating an amazing playlist. Dinner was catered by Jon & Vinny’s (we were supposed to be in Italy to celebrate so it was only appropriate we had Italian food for dinner). We dined al fresco, listened (and danced) to music, and sat by the fire to finish off a truly a magical evening!

Now onto fashion and what I wore. I picked a Christy Dawn dress. If you’re not familiar with Christy Dawn she’s a Los Angeles designer who focuses on sustainable and ethically crafted fashion. Several new dresses dropped (all cotton) the Bianca and Colette. I accessorized with with turquoise Beck Jewels hoops, and Beatrice Valenzuela slides

Regarding the table setting I used Year & Day dishes, linen napkinshurricane candlesvintage goblets (similar to mine), and a wood board for the crudités.

XX

Julie

 

Home Run

While searching for new tablecloths I came across a ton of affordable linens at H&M home.

  1. Two Pack Linen Napkins H&M, $12.
  2. Washed Linen Tablecloth H&M, $59.99. Dusty rose here
  3. Washed Linen Duvet Set H&M, $129.99.
  4. Washed Linen Bathrobe H&M, $49.99.
  5. Cotton Storage Basket H&M, $29.99.
  6. Tasseled Cotton Rug H&M, $99.
  7. Canvas Laundry Basket H&M, $29.99.

Also on my radar is the Always Pan (finally back in stock) and Nude wine glasses (mine keep dwindling away). 

 

LOVE

img_5112“No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.” Nelson Mandela

Picture: Robert Indiana

Monday Mood

Hope everyone had a great weekend. I spent the weekend binge watching Normal People (loved Marianne’s chic & elegant style), bike riding, doing yoga, making pizza, and jump starting my new skin regimen (with thisthisthisthis, and this). It’s hard to believe next weekend is Memorial Day and the start of Summer. It won’t be a traditional Memorial Day weekend but we’ll still make the most of it.

Today I’m sharing what’s been in my shopping cart along with some weekend finds while browsing. I bought this cute eyelet tiered mini on sale at Shopbop. I’ve been living in my Fiore mini (runs big also like the maxi), and can’t wait for my Shop Mille dress to arrive. I took advantage of J. Crew’s swim sale which will be arriving this week, and found Marysia on sale herehere, & here. I spotted these comfortable Bottega look for less sandals, along with Dr Scholl’s original clogs (& these Marni ones). Now onto home, I updated our pool hammocks, found these chic ping pong paddles from the Jennifer Fisher x CB2 collab, and trying to decide on Adirondack chairs for our front patio. Considering thisthis, or this

Have a great week!

XOXO

Julie

Photo: Slim Aarons Pussyfooting available at Jonathan Adler.

 

 

Kitchen Ket-chup

I’ve been spending the majority of my time at home in the kitchen cooking. I’ve been trying new recipes and creating some of my own. I’ve also been updating my kitchen supplies and coveting new ones. Kitchen Ket-chup below. 

  1. I’m a big fan of vintage pyrex I have both pink and turquoise. You can find some pieces here , herehere, and here
  2. We are Happy to Serve You NYC Greek Coffee Cup Amazon, $15. Nostalgic for NYC transplants in LA. 
  3. Mini Loaf Pan Set Williams Sonoma, $28. I love these mini loaf pans because I find that we never eat the whole loaf we bake. With these you can split up the recipe and freeze the additional mini loaf’s. 
  4. Stainless Steel Mini Masher Amazon, $12.95. I’ve been making a lot of egg salad and avocado toast and the mini masher is perfect for making small portions. 
  5. La Double J Floral Print Napkins Matches, $96. Check out all La Double J home at Matches here
  6. Magic Linen Apron Amazon, $39. My new favorite apron. 
  7. Margrethe Nested Mixing Bowls Goop, $60. I like these mixing bowls because they have lids. 
  8. Ottolenghi Jerusalem Cookbook Amazon, $24. I’ve cooking a lot of Mediterranean food, and this is a great cookbook!
  9. Le Creuset Rose William Sonoma. I love any kitchenware that’s pink.
  10. 8 inch French Whisk Amazon, $8. My favorite whisk for making salad dressings. 

 

Backgammon By The Pool

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It’s Friday and cocktail hour this evening will consist of a skinny margarita, salty bar snacks, and a game of backgammon by the pool. I have been playing backgammon since I was 7 years old. My great uncle taught me how to play on a trip to visit him in Brazil. Today I play on the beautiful wood set that he taught me on. If you don’t know how to play backgammon now’s the time to learn. Here’s a link to the rules of backgammon

Above picture is “Backgammon By The Pool” by Slim Aarons. To see a full selection of Slim Arrons prints at Jonathan Adler click here. I love the way Slim Aarons was able to capture the style, elegance, glamour of his subjects in that era. 

A couple backgammon sets to choose from….

  1. Jonathan Adler Backgammon Set Anthropologie.
  2. SunnyLife Backgammon Set Shopbop.
  3. Acyclic Backgammon Set Monogram available Mark & Graham.
  4. Colorful Backgammon Set Moma Design Store.

To send you off into the weekend here a couple of things I’ve had my eyes on….

  1. Gucci Strawberry Pool Slides Saks, $310.
  2. Clear Lucite Cootie Stick Parker Thatch, $25. This is genius!
  3. The Songbird Velvet Slides/Slippers Birdies, $95. Cute Mother’s Day Gift along with my Mother’s Day Gift Guide
  4. Banjanan Bella Dress Shopbop, $380.
  5. Vans UA Era Sneaker Navy Goop, $65. White here.
  6. High Waist Capri Alo, $88 ( & these on sale). During last week’s heat wave I realized I needed a new pair of capri’s. 

Have a great weekend!

XOXO, 

Julie

 

Let’s Get Organized

This past month I’ve been doing a lot of purging and organizing at home. I thought it would be nice to connect with an expert in the field and hear her thoughts on keeping organized during this unique time at home. I connected with organizing guru Amy Suddleson / Lifestyle Organizer & Designer. Since 2008, Amy Suddleson has been a leader in lifestyle organizing and design. Amy has provided full service home organization, transforming spaces with her creative, functional and maintainable strategies paired with her stylish visual aesthetic.

Julie: Why do your clients reach out to you?

Amy: People reach out to me because they are overwhelmed with their space and just don’t know where to begin. I help them create a more simplified way of living by organizing, eliminating, and creating a peaceful space that provides balance in their lives. I have found that living an organized life, in a well-maintained home, eliminates internal chaos, leaving people feeling mentally and emotionally clearer – and ultimately, allowing more time to appreciate the people and things they love.

Julie: Any tips on staying organized during this unique time at home?

Amy: I believe in creating a flexible weekly schedule. You need structure in your day but also some flexibility. For example making your bed, opening your shades, scheduling your workouts, meal prep, and working. I do this by creating time blocks. For instance, cleaning the whole house at once can be overwhelming so I schedule it in blocks throughout the week. The task doesn’t seem as daunting if you break it up. I like using a digital calendar for myself but I find that kids really benefit from a visual calendar. A schedule is really important for creating a sense of normalcy for ourselves and the whole family during these unprecedented times.

Julie: What are your favorite bins for storing staples like flour, sugar, and snacks?

Amy: My favorite bins, baskets, and canisters are

Julie: What are your favorite containers for organizing kitchen utensils in drawers and silverware?

Amy: My favorites kitchen drawer tray is Bamboo Silverware tray and the iDesign Linus expandable cutlery organizer.

Julie: What are your favorite hangers, jewelry organizer, and drawer organizers for the closet?

Amy: I use so many different types of items but here are a few. There is no one size fits all so it depends on my clients space and needs.

It was a pleasure speaking with Amy I learned so much in our chat. Organization is an art and Amy is an expert! Amy shares her organizational tips and inspirational photos on her Instagram page @AmySuddelson.

 

 

 

 

 

Nesting

img_2791All this nesting at home has made me want to do some refreshing. I love my new dishes (way overdue). Other items that could use some sprucing are apronsoven mittsdish cloths, linen napkins, and sheets. Madewell just launched a collaboration with Parachute Home check it out here. I also spotted these colorful indoor outdoor bistro chairs at Anthropologie ( & these both 40% off! ) thinking they would be cute around my kitchen table. While I was searching for chairs I happen to find a cozy I Stole My Boyfriends sweatshirt and tee ON SALE (here & here).

In other news Everlane just launched their $98 clog. While browsing Everlane check out the new sand color way of the Utility Jumpsuit (love!) great for lounging. Also part of their new arrivals is the Form Crossover and Day Crossover sandal.

 

Kitchen Chronicles

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Since many of us are cooking a lot more then we once were I compiled a list of my must-have kitchen essentials. 

  1. Kuhn Rikon Pressure Cooker Amazon, $169.95. This is a good size for a family of 4. A lot of people are intimidated by the pressure cooker but once you learn how to use it it’s so easy. Dinner is ready in 20 mins!
  2. Le Creuset Cast Iron Dutch Oven Williams Sonoma, $150-$400. I have several sizes of the dutch oven. I also use the braiser and roaster (above pic) pans a lot. 
  3. All Clad 10 Piece Set Williams Sonoma, $699.95. I’ve had these pots and pans since I got married you only need to buy them once.
  4. Hamilton Slow Cooker Target, $69.99. This is a simple slow cooker with easy to use settings nothing fancy. For a more sophisticated one All Clad Gourmet Slow Cooker Williams Sonoma, $249.
  5. Magic Linen Japanese Crossback Apron Verishop, $47 & Classic Linen Apron Verishop, $36. I don’t cook without an apron on I hate to ruin my clothes.
  6. Bron Coucke Stainless Steel Mandoline Amazon, $129. I have the stainless steel french one but the plastic ones work just as well. Benriner Madoline Williams Sonoma, $59 Cute color!
  7. Vitamix E310 Explorian Blender Williams Somona, $349. This is the most used appliance by the kids. 
  8. Year & Day dishes Verishop. Made in Portugal beautiful quality for the price and 25% off now. 
  9. Pink Cuisinart Mini Prep Amazon, $32.99. The pink color way is supporting Breast Cancer Research.
  10. Tortilla Molds Amazon, $11.99. Tostada Tuesday is big at our house and it’s fun to make your own shells.
  11. Microplane Grader Amazon, $11.00.
  12. Open Kitchen Lemon & Lime Squeezer Williams Sonoma, $18

Home Sweet Home

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Staying at home this past week has made me appreciate cooking even more, and sitting down and having a meal together as a family. I’ve enjoyed setting the table with nice plates (Year & Day is 25% off at Verishop also check out this), placemats, napkins, napkin rings, and simple flowers from the yard.

To keep busy we have been playing backgammon, making friendship bracelets, and I just ordered a tie-dye kit for the girls (tanktee, & sweatshirt for tie-dying).

This is one of my classic recipes that I have been making for years. It’s simple, healthy, and delicious. 

Chicken Marsala

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 pounds boneless pounded chicken breast
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • fresh black pepper
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • olive oil
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 1/2 cup white wine (doesn’t have to be marsala)
  • 1/2 cup veggie or chicken broth 
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley 

Preparation 

If your chicken is not already pounded place chicken between 2 sheets of plastic wrap and pound to about 1/2 inch thick. Spinkle both sides evenly with salt and pepper. Place flour in a shallow dish. Dredge chicken in flour, turning to coat, and shake off excess flour. 

Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add chicken cooking until it’s golden brown and then flipping to brown the other side. Remove chicken from the pan. Add mushrooms, wine, broth, and lemon juice to the pan. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 mins until the mixture is reduced to about 2/3 cup. Return chicken to the pan, turning well to coat and cook for an additional 5 mins. Sprinkle with parley and ready to serve.

Pan in the above picture is the 5 quart Le Creuset braiser

 

 

Lucky You

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day! We can all use some positive energy, good luck, and protection right now. One way to get it is with these beautiful boho Golden State Beauty horseshoe wall hangings. Each horseshoe is custom made by the designer herself Malibu native Krisha Garvey. You can check out her Etsy shop here or custom order them directly through her instagram account here (DM for orders). Hang them on your wall, front door, or display them on your coffee table. Made with love!