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30 October 2014

Guaca-tato Salad

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Yesterday my husband, Jason, was getting busy in the kitchen trying to use up items from our CSA box before our new box comes today.  He made THE most delicious salad…So delicious, in fact, that I had to stop eating mid-way through (and make him stop eating) so that I could take a few pictures and have him jot down the recipe for the blog today. It’s vegan, gluten-free and seriously bomb diggidy bomb bomb.

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And so here is the recipe for Jason’s (soon-to-be-famous :P) Guaca-tato Salad!
(Feeds about 2)

Ingredients:

1 bunch of cilantro finely chopped
A couple of hand full of cherry tomatoes cut into quarters
1.5 avocados, diced
A handful of fingerling potatoes, boiled and diced
1 Tbps. of grapeseed oil Veganaise
1 Tbsp. of extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp. of apple cider vinegar
Juice from 1/2 a lemon
Salt & pepper
Basil for garnish

Directions:
In a large bowl, toss all of the chopped and diced  ingredients together. In a smaller bowl, add (first) the veganaise, and slowly mix in the olive oil, vinegar, and lemon juice until smooth to make the dressing.Pour the dressing onto the salad and toss together. Add salt and pepper to taste, garnish with a leaf of basil — especially if it’s for a blog post :P 

Enjoy!

 

 

29 October 2014

Brass figurine obsession

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My obsession with brass figurines continues, so instead of purchasing more and more of them on late-night eBay exploits, I’ve decided to blog about them in hopes that it somehow satiates my need to fill my entire home with giraffes, elephants, turtles, Trojan horses, and octopi of the brass variety. I also think these little dudes make great (and affordable) gifts.

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…and here’s my Trojan horse in action…I know. He’s quite the handsome fellow! Check out all my late night delicious brassy discoveries, (and trust me, they’re all very, very tempting…) right here.

 

28 October 2014

Nicole’s Faux-tisse Wall

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My trip to Europe earlier this year left me inspired from head to toe.  A favourite stop during my time in the South of France was a visit to the Musée Matisse in Nice.  The museum showcases one of the largest collections of the French painter’s work in the world and is home to many of his famous cut-outs; I immediately fell in love with all the rich-hued, organic and somewhat naïve shapes.

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This place had some floor to ceiling collage type murals of his shapes and recently, I felt compelled to try my hand at a mini version.  I used my split leaf philodendron as the inspiration for my shapes, because I had earlier made a connection between the plant & the painter.  I drew a bunch of free hand monstera leaves and cut them out…I’ve always loved cutting and pasting :)

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I then stuck all my paper cut-outs up on a wall in my living room.  I tried to use the biggest pieces at the bottom and even included the small leftover bits near the top.

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Et voilà!  Just call me a Fauve ;)  I really like the ephemeral nature of my faux leaves- you can switch them up whenever you like!  I think something like this could be cool as party decor…instead of a garland or something.  It’s kind of like a version of a blackboard wall…you can add some color or take it down whenever you want.  Merci Monsieur Matisse!

{Project by Nicole Valentine Don for Justina Blakeney est. 1979.}

For more Nicole,  visit her blog and follow her on instagram.

Photos by: Fiona Galbraith

27 October 2014

This Just In: Jim Franco

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I have a weakness for ceramics, so Jim Franco’s work literally stopped me in my tracks. It feels handcrafted and organic while at the same time elegant, full of clean lines and serene colors. In just two short years, this New York based photographer has developed his gift for the art of pottery. It would be hard to choose just one piece, although I might be partial to his use of rich earth tones.

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How stunning is this collection?  To read more about Jim’s process and see the rest of his work go here.

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All photos by Gentl and Hyers. 

 

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Today I get to share some exciting advancements on the book front– WE HAVE A COVER, which is actually starting to make this whole book thing feel really real. Since I’ve been working on this thing for almost two years now, sometimes it’s easy to get caught in all the tiny details and decisions (yesterday I had to cut out two pages, for example, and I can’t tell you how hard it is to choose what gets cut and what remains.) But, the cover is here and I am so thrilled to be able to share it with you guys finally.

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The process of choosing a cover with a publisher can be daunting. The cover is SUCH a big deal, right? And there can be a lot of cooks in the kitchen, lots of ideas and lots and lots of opinions–and that is why I am SO happy to say that I genuinely love the cover and feel that it’s a great representation of what you’ll find inside all the 304 pages of the book. The cover shot was taken at the home of stylist Paige Morse who lives in Dallas, Texas. I really had a great time styling her home because (in case you can’t tell) she loves textiles just as much as I do. If you are curious to see some of the other designs that we played around with for the cover,  I’ve posted up some of the runner-ups on Facebook. 

So believe it or not, the book doesn’t come out for another five and a half months. Isn’t that crazy?? But in the mean time, you can already pre-order this bad-boy on Amazon–which is also very crazy. And amazing. And crazy. I’d love to hear your thoughts and the cover and I’m wishing you guys a relaxing weekend!

22 October 2014

DIY Tripod Planter

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I’m excited to announce that I’m taking over the Lowe’s Instagram for the next five days, sharing some jungalicious projects and styling tips–including this nifty thrifty little tripod planter I whipped up in about 15 minutes.

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I think this little dude would make a pretty perfect gift for a plant-lover. Keep on reading for the instructions, and be sure to follow along here for more ideas and inspo! (more…)

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It seems that some children come into the world super creative, and others come into the world super logical. Kids exercise imagination in different ways.

Did you ever watch a child draw a squiggly-straight line topped with a circle, and name it flower? Or name it an “i”? or a balloon? Or all of the above? Children’s minds run free. Some kids count the lights on a bridge and imagine the line extending into infinity, a most useful bridge indeed. Other kids see the lights on a bridge and imagine kingdoms, and fairy dust, and alternate constellations.

Some kids get where they’re going by cutting right to the chase. Other kids get where they’re going by considering all the possible details they observe or imagine. Neuroscience tells us that while most people use each side of their brain for different tasks, some people mostly rely on the left hemisphere of their brain, and others rely mostly on their “right brain.”

Are you (or your child, partner, friend) a right brain creative, making wholes from parts? Telling stories to give life to objects? Using metaphor to describe and connect? What about a left brain, logical, direct, systematic, straight to the point of the story type? Do you visualize a chair before you choose wood and pick up a hammer? Do you hear the whole melody before you start to play? Do you see the outline of the paper, the structure of the bridge, before you begin the work? Or do you observe a messy multiplicity of parts and craft a ray of potential whole pictures, making meaning of shadows and colors, seeing faces in flowers and branches, seeing feelings and meaning in faces? We associate all these activities with the Right Hemisphere of the brain. Right brain people, stereotypically, express emotions more easily, are more passionate and compassionate, are more open to the possibilities, less decisive, less direct, less systematic and less organized than Left Brain people.

We can foster creativity in Left Brain people by using their strength: Ask them (or yourself): How many possible combinations of (e.g. blooms and branches) can we use to make a face? Write a scheme of possibilities A = eyes: B= nose: C= mouth; D = ears: A = nose, B = ears, etc.

We can foster systematic (left brain) thinking in Right Brain people by using their strength: What do the faces that you like have in common with one another? How are they different from the ones you like less? What are 5 steps you might use to teach somebody how to make a #facethefoliage?

We can all train our brains to use both sides, and we can celebrate our own natural gifts when we know how to recognize them.

*Dr. Bubbie is my amazing mom and a Harvard-trained psychologist. You can leave your questions for Dr. Bubbie about life, motherhood, family, relationships and friendships below and we may pick your question to answer in the next installment of Dear Dr. Bubbie.