Friday, October 30, 2015


Welcome to Foodie Friday!

When browsing for recipes to share with you on Foodie Fridays, I seem to gravitate
toward those that have a healthy side, but today I just want to prepare you, this recipe does not fit into that category. 

Many of you are likely familiar with Cannoli. It's a very popular Italian dessert. It is a fried pastry cone filled with a creamy, sweet filling. The filling is either ricotta or marscapone sweetened a bit with sugar or honey and sometimes includes chopped pistachios.

Today's recipe is Cannoli Pound Cake. How unique right? I thought how terrific this would be as a hostess gift for the upcoming holidays.

Take a peek......

The cake batter is easy to prepare, and has many of the same ingredients that are found in traditional Cannoli dessert. It bakes beautifully, and the taste is quite a nice change from other pound cakes. 

You may find the recipe here:

The mini chocolate chips and chopped pistachios are quite pleasing to the palette, if you know what I mean. 

As you prepare your gift list for the holidays, and you start to become overwhelmed, as we all do, remember this little sweet treat. (This recipe can be divided in half and used in small loaf pans too!)  Simply wrap it in a beautiful holiday cellophane, and add a Christmas ribbon or bow. There's nothing like a gift from the heart at holiday time!

Wishing you a sweet, safe and Happy Halloween!


Tuesday, October 27, 2015


Welcome to DIY day at TLB!!!

First if all I want to wish my middle daughter a very HAPPY BIRTHDAY today! I hope you have a wonderful day!! xxoo

I'm jumping ahead to Christmas today, because I couldn't wait any longer. I don't know about you, but I have been inundated with holiday catalogs! I love Christmas and the holidays in general, so it is so hard to contain myself from not doing at least one project a little early.

In one of the catalogs I received, I spotted the cutest Buffalo Plaid Deer. They looked as if they were made of paper mache' covered with Buffalo Plaid. So I've improvised a bit, and made my own version.....that I call DIY-- BUFFALO PLAID RUDOLPH. Stop over to see how to make them........

Friday, October 23, 2015


Welcome to Foodie Friday friends!

Rain, rain go away! This northern girl wants a bit of Fall not floods!  

GMA has published this great US map showing us the best time of year to expect the prettiest fall foliage from coast to coast. It looks like early November for us. (see the link below for your peak time)

Ironically, I found a great pic I took in early November last year at our home in
Princeton, NJ......I wonder how it will look in Texas this year.

Maybe if we're lucky we'll get some color very soon! But until then I've been thinking about apples. Those crunchy Western NY apples that we grew up on.

Today's blog is a recipe from one of my favorite trendsetters of tasteful everything....Carolyne Roehm. I love her approach to entertaining and decorating and quite often incorporate her ideas into my parties. The recipe today is from Carolyne Roehm.

  Weatherstone Fresh Apple Bread 

This time of year beckons everything apple; applesauce, apple pies, apple breads and cookies, and how about Apple Cake?

Take a peek at how easy this is to make.....

You can bake the cake either in a bundt pan or 2 small loaf pans. The cake falls apart very easily when using a bundt pan so handle with care.

It's yummy center is full of delicious apples with a nice spicy Fall flavor.

Here is the link to the recipe:

I hope you are all enjoying a nice Fall day wherever you may live. 

Have a wonderful colorful weekend!


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Tuesday, October 20, 2015


Welcome to Tuesday TLB friends!

I hope you all had a terrific weekend! I'm in full house selections mode and have redefined our new space to be lighter and brighter with the same classic style I've always maintained.

Three weeks ago I started with the design, electrical and lighting meetings that included every selection both inside and out. I finish tomorrow! Legal docs have been filed and we are awaiting the date for the foundation to be dug.

I started selections with our main flooring, because it sets the stage for the rest of the house It enables me to establish our whole house style and color palette much easier by making this big decision first.

I chose a nailed down and slightly scraped  Red Oak wood floor with a Medium Brown color stain. Texas is big on their site finished, hand scraped wood floors. I was told the floors that are hand scraped are much more forgiving when it comes to dents and other imperfections that life presents. There are different levels of hand scraped, some being deeper than others, but for our style a slight hand scraped was recommended.

This is our wood floor choice.......

Our builder has chosen Sherwin Williams paints to be used in their homes. On their list are some of the "Top 10 Colors for 2015" and some of the basic tried and true classics.

I love a classic white ceiling and white trim. The color I chose is SW #7006-Extra White. Then it was time for the walls. After 10 years of using the same Benjamin Moore color in our other homes I felt it was time to lighten and freshen. I wanted a nice transitional, timeless color so I chose Sherwin Williams #7015 Repose Gray for all of the interior walls.

Starting in the Laundry Room......

I chose a nice neutral Greige porcelain tile, and SW #7650 Ellie Gray painted cabinetry.
All faucets throughout the house will be Chrome finish.

The Powder Room will have a Polished Marble tile. It has great gray and neutrals
in it. I'm still mulling over what I will do with the walls.

Moving on to the kitchen-

The island is a Quartz countertop that resembles Carrera marble. Low maintenance and classic style. The island Cabinetry is Maple and the stain Bistro. It looks very black in this photo, however, it has a slight tinge of the flooring color which coordinates the two very well.

I'm using timeless white shiny subway tile in a brick pattern around the entire perimeter of the back cabinet area. The perimeter cabinets are maple wood painted White Cap. The perimeter counter top will be black granite, just like my NJ kitchen.

The master bathroom cabinets are a smooth Alder wood with a Chesterfield stain. The floor tile was a bit of a challenge. I love marble, but not when it is wet. I learned first hand in our NJ house just how lethal it can be, so that choice was out. 

While describing what I had in mind for the floor tile, my designer pulled out a beautiful porcelain tile that resembled marble, but without the polished finish. It's beautiful flowy design is different on each tile, giving it that true classic marble look. I decided to use it both on the floor, on the shower walls, and the tub surround. The shower will also have a band of marble rectangular mosaic pieces in various neutral complimentary colors. This will be installed around the perimeter of the shower also.

The tub is encased with the same smooth Alder with Chesterfield stain.

Bedroom #2 is downstairs and will be used as a guest room and also our youngest
daughter's room when she visits. Her cabinetry color is Ellie Gray and her granite is Polar Paciugo. 

Bedrooms #3 & #4 upstairs, (our two other daughters bedrooms when they visit), are painted White cap. Their countertops are a white on white cultured marble.

The gameroom and media rooms are located upstairs. In the wet bar the cabinetry is Maple painted Tricom Black SW 7650 with a subway tile backsplash to be applied in a herringbone design, and a granite countertop.

Last of all the Master bedroom carpet. I have upgraded the pad to an 8lb. pad throughout the entire house. I wanted a bit of a pattern to the master carpet for a little more luxurious look. The color I chose is Mineralite.

I hope you have enjoyed today's blog. There's a lot of work ahead.
 Please join me as our journey continues.

Have a wonderful Tuesday....see you on Friday!


Friday, October 16, 2015


When I was browsing a blog that I subscribe to, (Cottage at the Crossroads by Jane), I came across a recipe she had posted from her sister-in-law that triggered fond memories of my Mom's ham salad. 

Growing up, and still today, my Mom makes great ham salad. I know that my brother is a big fan too! I was drawn to the recipe by two unique ingredients that are not in my Mom's recipe. I decided to give it a try.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015


One of the best ways to get into Fall is doing a little outside decorating. Since we're living in an apartment until the house is completed, I thought there would be rules that wouldn't allow decorating of our patios or front porches. But when we returned home this weekend there was a flyer attached to our door that read....October 2015 Patio & Front Door Halloween Contest....October 30th. The winner is awarded a $25.00 gift card. That's all I needed to read. I got busy!

Decorating my porch for Fall is one of my favorites.The air in the north is crisp and cool. The summer flowers have lost their luster and it's time for a new burst of color in the form Mums, Cruciferous plants and grasses. It creates such a beautiful new palette that only Fall can bring.

The palette I chose this year is rust, golden yellow, purple, bright orange and steel gray with hints of purple. 

I added a couple of Mums, a clump of purple Prairie grass, one Ornamental Kale plant, and a few of the branches from my wreath sprigs. A small pumpkin nestled in the Kale gives the pot some great contrast. As my plants open more and more color will explode into a Fall like wonder.

This year it's time to bring back the straw wreath. Straw makes a great base, doesn't scratch your door and is always fall like. (in my eyes anyway) Continuing with the same
color palette, I made at trip to Hobby Lobby and loaded up with sprigs, a straw wreath and a burlap black stripe spool of ribbon.

All you need is a glue gun to assemble the wreath.

Since all of my planters are in storage I found the urn at Wal-Mart. It was perfect size
and shape for the apartment porch. I also picked up the Welcome mat at Wal-mart.

Here's the final look.........

The straw actually looks great with the Texas stone too. I'd like to say I planned it 
that way, but I was just lucky! I can't wait till the plants grow and the pot is 
bursting with Fall color!

Wishing you a wonderful Fall day!


Just a quick note:  While I was planting my urn, Texas temps were 93 degrees, 
and beautifully sunny!

Friday, October 9, 2015


Welcome to Foodie Friday friends!

I hope you all have had a great week. I've just finished my second visit to the Design
Center and am feeling pretty good. The second meeting involved more substantial choices, cabinetry, countertops, flooring, etc. I left the center at peek traffic time; which is horrendous by the Dallas Fort Worth airport. When I arrived home, it was time to prepare dinner......and after all of the stress of the day, I decided I needed some comfort food.

You are all going to be so happy to hear that I am sharing a delicious substitution for calorie laden traditional Mac & Cheese that even the kids will love. The recipe is called Squash Mac 'n Cheese.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015


Welcome to TLB's first Tuesday blog!

The new schedule may take a bit of getting used to, but I believe it will work out quite nicely. The next 8-10 months are going to be quite busy in many ways for me.

Hubby and I did a little more acclimating over the weekend. We ventured to the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Gardens. What a pleasant surprise it was for us! 

The day was simply lovely......the temperature was perfect and our tour was breathtaking! The colors and creations were outstanding! The talented artisans are to be commended on the painstakingly executed buildings and grounds that simply take your breath away.

Here is one example.......and yes, these horses are made from corn stalks!

Friday, October 2, 2015


Welcome to Foodie Friday!

Today I am announcing some changes here at TLB to help accommodate my ever changing personal schedule. Starting Tuesday, October 6th (Happy Birthday Amelia!), I will be bringing TLB to you each week on Tuesdays and Fridays. 

On Tuesdays, I will alternate Home Decor, DIY Projects and Travel Adventures, and on Friday's I will stay with my Foodie Friday theme. I'm making these changes so that I may continue to bring you the quality information that I believe has been the foundation for the continued growth and success of TLB.

On that note.....have I got a SWEET bit of deliciousness for you today!

Take a peek.....