Decorating my home for the holidays is one of my absolute favourite things. I blast the Christmas music, take out all the boxes packed from the year before and go to town! I recycle a lot from the previous year; but, this Christmas, I did manage to add a few more new details. And the good thing was, I didn’t need to spend a lot to do so. I’ll take you for a little tour of my holiday home decor!The christmas tree is virtually the same as last year – nice and simple. But I did switch up my wrapping. Instead of kraft paper and silver, I have gone for gold! Stripes, polka dates, you name it!
I really wanted some of those gorgeous starry string lights in the glass cloches from Restoration Hardware but they were a little pricey. I found some string lights at Home Sense though and then flipped over a glass vase to make my own version. I’m on the hunt now for some more affordable cloches but in the mean time, this works nicely. At night, the lights look like they are just suspended in mid air…so pretty! The lighting in the window was long enough to wrap around our ladder as well. Again, at night it creates just the right amount of ambience!Small touches like this wire tree on the end table are just the right amount of detail. Also note my new Anna with Love photo of NYC…love it!!My bunting made it up again this year…see my tutorial from last year here.I absolutely love my new wooden pillars and tree from Crate & Barrel. I found a simple white table runner from Home Sense and created this table setting. All it took was a trip to Michaels to get some greenery and pine cones (which smell heavenly!), some white candles and then a quick perusal at my local Sunterra market to find some delicious red pears for a pop of colour.So festive, right?!I can’t remember where I saw this…but I created from washi tape snowflakes in the office…right above my basket of wrapping paper. (Basket from Target and wrapping paper from Home Sense).And finally, in the bedroom, I added my own version of a snowball garland. After I made my pom pom wreath (see that here), I saved a few and tied them to a long piece of braided yarn. Tucked behind my homemade headboard (made soooo long ago, it is in desperate need of a revamp!!), it adds a bit of whimsy to the room! How deliciously soft does the bed look with my fave linen duvet cover and pillows! That’s all for now! What do you think?? What additions are you making to your holiday home decor this year?
At Christmas time gluten free living can be a bit of a bust. Especially when it comes to treats. While we have adapted some recipes, other recipes, like fudge, are wonderfully gluten free. The red of the cherries and the green pistachios are a perfect nod to Christmas. While this recipe calls for nuts, if allergies are an issue, feel free to substitute the nuts with Nilla vanilla wafers. If you can’t find nice dried cherries, you can also use dried cranberries.
This recipe freezes well so you can make it in advance and take out small batches for impromptu gatherings with friends. It tastes delicious with a nice Burgundy or a steaming hot cup of coffee. This also makes a great gift for teachers, classmates or as a hostess gift. This is my go-to Christmas recipe. I have yet to meet someone who can only have one piece of this Rocky Mountain Cheery Cheesecake Fudge!
What You’ll Need
- 12 oz good quality white baking chocolate (I use Bernard Callebaut)
- 1 cup dried cherries, thinly sliced or finely chopped
- 1 package (250 g) block style cream cheese, softened
- 4 cups icing sugar
- 2 tsp each vanilla and freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 cup coarsely chopped pistachios
- Line the bottom of your loaf pan with plastic wrap
- Chop your cherries and pistachios (or vanilla wafers)
- Melt the chocolate in a bain-marie on your stovetop (I use a glass bowl over a pot of simmering water).
- In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese until fluffy. Gradually add the icing sugar, beating until incorporated after each addition. Beat in vanilla and lemon juice.
- Blend in melted chocolate until smooth. Stir in cherries and pistachios. Spread into the prepared loaf pan. Cover and refrigerate until firm.
- Turn fudge onto cutting board and remove plastic wrap. With a large sharp knife, cut into ½” thick slices. I usually cut each of these slices into halves or thirds depending on what I am using them for. If I am freezing them, I layer them in a glass lock container using parchment between the layers to prevent sticking.
Enjoy! Merry Christmas. J xx
Only 12 more days until Christmas!! I can’t believe it AND I can’t believe how unprepared I am still. I have a lot of shopping to do but what I do have, I started to wrap today. Feeling a little closer to being ready at least! This weekend I hope to get a lot more accomplished and finish the shopping and decorating (fingers crossed!!). Are you finished yet?? At this time last year, I was a lot more in order (See what I mean??)
Anyways, a couple of new things to mention before I head off to brave the stores. I went to the best place in Edmonton this past week and I would highly recommend going for a Christmas cocktail or two. Not only does North 53 have an awesome vibe, but the barkeeps are so talented! These drinks they created for us were on another level…you can create your own (much like the place I raved about in Seattle) or choose a delicious concoction off the menu. Oh and the popcorn chicken was drool worthy!
Did you all see that Pantone announced their colour of the year? What are your thoughts of Marsala?? I was secretly hoping it would be indigo because I felt particularly inspired by it this year but I do love a good wine colour (and just wine for that matter too, hehe).
See how they chose the colour here.
Anyways, I hope you have a wonderful weekend and tomorrow I hope to bring you some more pics from my holiday decorating. And later this week, don’t miss an awesome Christmas recipe from Jacqui! xo
Every time I go into Anthropologie, I want to buy anything and everything decor related. Especially during Christmas too! They have the most beautiful Christmas decorations and ornaments. Problem is, if I bought everything I saw, I would be in A LOT of trouble! So when I saw a wreath I loved, I figured I could attempt making my own version. Here are the steps to creating your own DIY Snowball Wreath.
I had some leftover yarn that I used for this DIY. I would suggest either doing one colour or choosing a few complimentary colours.
Never made a pom pom? Check out my tutorial here. I suggest making a few different sizes. Those smaller ones were made by wrapping about 24 times around a fork and the bigger ones were just on my hand (4 fingers and about 28 wraps).
I’m sure you could purchase an actual wreath form, but I figured a bent wire hanger would work just as well. It’s ok if it’s not perfectly round…the more pom poms you tie on, the better it looks. When you tie your poms on, try to make them really tight and then push them together. If you are using different colours, make sure to alternate and create a bit of a pattern. Finally, trim all the excess ties!And voila! My Snowball wreath is complete and ready to hang. Anthro’s is a bit thicker as you can see and I would definitely need a 3 ring wreath form to achieve that thickness. But I like my simple version. And I like that it sorta isn’t perfect either. I decided to hang it at the end of our hallway, on the linen closet. It’s so rare we decorate hallways, it felt like a great addition!! Next on my list…a snowball garland DIY
Love from Shya too! xo
When I thought about doing a gift guide for the gentlemen, I admit it was a lot harder to come up with ideas. So instead of attempting this post myself, I asked one of my favourite people for help. I’ve known Kyle Nichols for a long time now and he is definitely one of my most fashionable friends. He’s been working at building up the family business, Pinnacle Sportswear and Promotions, for nearly a decade now and recently he teamed up with 3 others to form Federal Moto, a custom bike shop that sells the best merchandise (go check it out!! Ryan practically lives in his Federal Moto tee). When it comes to great local gifts and perfect ideas for any guy, Kyle knows his stuff. So that’s why I couldn’t be more excited to show you Kyle’s Holiday Gift Guide for him edition.
Aeropress Coffee Maker is a great option for pressed coffee on the go. Take it camping or anywhere! In Edmonton, our local sandwich shop Farrow sells these! (And then you can grab a delicious sandwich while you’re there) | A winter essential for any guy: a sexy take on the lumberjack flannel | You don’t have to be a pro videographer or photographer to use the new Go Pro Hero. Take pictures, make movies and document your life to share! | In the cold winters here, these Sorels are the perfect sh*t kickers, ice scrapers and mini furnaces for your feet. And still look stylish! | If your guy loves to hit the slopes, capture all the flips and falls with these Zeal HD Camera goggles | Great outerwear that would be perfect for layering this winter | With the beard trend continuing, make it super soft with this beard oil. The ladies will be even more happy! | Life’s just a little better with fun socks | Everyone needs a good carry on to save money these days. This bag is tough, durable, and designed in Canada. Represent. | Pocketbooks to get both your useless and important thoughts scribbled down | An Rdio subscription is great for the music lover…tons of music at your disposal | And finally, you can never have enough hats. May as well get an awesome one!
My very awesome friend, Kyle! Photo courtesy of Nicole Ashley Photography!
Happy shopping! xo