Fall Salad Delights to Brighten Your Palate

As the temperature drops and the days get shorter, it’s easy to find comfort in hearty, warm meals during the winter months. However, that doesn’t mean you have to bid farewell to salads until spring. Fall and Winter salads can be just as satisfying and flavorful, incorporating seasonal ingredients that add a burst of freshness to your plate. Here are some delightful salad recipe ideas that will keep your taste buds happy and your body nourished during the cold season.

Roasted Beet Salad with Walnuts and Goat Cheese by From a Chef’s Kitchen
  1. Roasted Root Vegetable Salad:

Roasting root vegetables not only intensifies their flavors but also adds a delightful warmth to your salad. Start with a mix of carrots, beets, and sweet potatoes. Toss them in olive oil, season with salt, pepper, and fresh rosemary, then roast until tender. Combine the roasted veggies with baby spinach, goat cheese, and a balsamic vinaigrette for a satisfying and nutritious salad.

Fall Harvest Salad with Tahini Maple Dressing by Running on Real Food

2. Winter Harvest Salad (vegan):

Celebrate the bounty of winter with a harvest-inspired salad. Start with a base of mixed greens, such as kale and arugula. Add roasted butternut squash, brussels sprouts, and red onion for a hearty foundation. Top it off with pomegranate seeds, toasted pecans, and a drizzle of maple tahini dressing. The combination of sweet, savory, and nutty flavors will leave your taste buds dancing.

Quinoa Salad with Pomegranate, Feta and Mint by The Sunny Side Up Recipes
  1. Quinoa and Pomegranate Salad:

This quinoa and pomegranate salad is not only visually stunning but also packed with nutrients. Cook quinoa according to the package instructions and let it cool. Add pomegranate seeds, chopped fresh mint, and crumbled feta cheese. Drizzle with a dressing made from olive oil, lemon juice, and a hint of honey. The tartness of the pomegranate seeds and the freshness of mint will make this salad a winter favorite.

Kale and Brussel Sprouts Salad by Well Plated
  1. Kale and Brussels Sprouts Salad:

Kale and Brussels sprouts are cold-weather champions, and when combined, they create a hearty winter salad. Shred both vegetables finely, and then massage them with a lemony vinaigrette to soften and enhance their flavors. Add sliced apples, toasted walnuts, and grated Parmesan cheese for extra depth and crunch. It’s a nutrient-packed salad that’s perfect for the season.

Mushroom Salad with Lentils and Caramelized Onions by Viktoria’s Table
  1. Warm Lentil and Mushroom Salad:

Lentils are an excellent source of plant-based protein and fiber, making them a great choice for a satisfying winter salad. Cook green or brown lentils until tender, then sauté them with sliced mushrooms, garlic, and thyme until the mushrooms are golden and tender. Toss the lentils and mushrooms with baby arugula, crumbled goat cheese, and a simple mustard vinaigrette. The warm lentils and earthy mushrooms make this salad comforting and nourishing.

November: A Time to Gather, Give Thanks, and Feast!

November is here, and that means Thanksgiving is just around the corner. It’s that wonderful time of the year when we gather with our loved ones, express gratitude, and enjoy a hearty meal together. As the holiday season approaches, we find ourselves pouring over recipes and having marathon cooking sessions to create a feast that shows our loved ones just how much they mean to us. We’ve gathered some of our favorite Thanksgiving recipes to help you prepare a delectable meal. Plus, we’ll explore how to set the table in a way that creates a magical ambiance, ensuring this Thanksgiving won’t be forgotten for years.

Photo by Amaris Sachs Photo

The Thanksgiving Feast:

  1. Roast Turkey with All the Trimmings: Thanksgiving wouldn’t be complete without the star of the show, the turkey. Roasting a turkey can be a labor of love, but the result is worth every bit of effort. Season the bird with your favorite herbs and spices, and don’t forget to baste it for that golden, crispy skin. Serve it with classic stuffing, cranberry sauce, and rich gravy.
  2. Classic Mashed Potatoes: Creamy, buttery mashed potatoes are a must on any Thanksgiving table. Boil or steam your potatoes until they’re tender, then mash them with butter, cream or dairy-free alternative, salt, and pepper. These fluffy spuds pair perfectly with turkey and gravy.
  3. Homemade Cranberry Sauce: Say goodbye to canned cranberry sauce and say hello to this sweet and tangy homemade version. It’s quick, easy, and bursting with flavor.
  4. Pumpkin Pie: No Thanksgiving meal is complete without a slice of pumpkin pie. Discover this recipe for the ultimate dessert that will leave your guests craving more.
Photo by Amaris Sachs Photo

Setting the Thanksgiving Table:

While the food undoubtedly takes center stage, setting the table plays a crucial role in creating a warm and inviting ambiance for your Thanksgiving gathering. With a few simple touches, you can transform your dining area into a place that will be remembered for years to come.

  • Table Linens: Start with a clean and well-ironed tablecloth, placemats, or table runners in neutral or warm autumnal colors. Consider using seasonal patterns or textiles that add a touch of coziness.
  • Dinnerware: Opt for elegant or rustic dinnerware, depending on the style you wish to achieve. Mix and match patterns or use vintage dishes for a charming, eclectic look.
  • Centerpieces: Create a beautiful centerpiece with seasonal flowers, gourds, and candles. For a personal touch, craft your own centerpiece using natural elements like pinecones, leaves, nuts and fresh or dried fruit.
  • Place Cards: Design place cards with the names of your guests to make them feel extra special. Handwritten notes or small tokens of appreciation can be a lovely addition.
  • Candles and Lighting: Add warmth to the table with candles or fairy lights. The soft, flickering glow creates an enchanting atmosphere as the sun sets.
  • Final Touches: Don’t forget the small details like polished silverware and fresh, folded napkins. Consider incorporating rustic elements like wooden or woven chargers or place mats for an extra dash of charm.
Photo by Amaris Sachs Photo

As we enter November, we are reminded of the joy of Thanksgiving, a time to celebrate love, gratitude, and delicious food. The act of preparing a heartfelt meal for your loved ones is a true labor of love, and the art of setting the table can turn your gathering into a magical experience that will be cherished for years to come.

We hope that our Thanksgiving recipes and table-setting tips inspire you to create a memorable and meaningful holiday celebration. So, gather your loved ones, pull out all the stops in the kitchen, and let the ambiance you create remind everyone just how much they mean to you.

An Ode to Fall: Embracing the Season’s Bounty with Pumpkin Delights

As the days grow shorter and the leaves transform into vibrant shades of red, orange, and gold, there’s a palpable magic in the air. Fall has arrived, and with it comes a cornucopia of seasonal delights that warm the heart and nourish the soul. Among these autumn treasures, the pumpkin takes center stage, offering its earthy sweetness and versatility in a myriad of delectable recipes. In this ode to fall, we celebrate the beauty of the season and pay homage to the humble pumpkin with some mouthwatering recipes that will have you savoring every moment.

The Rustic Charm of Fall

Fall, with its crisp air and cozy sweaters, brings an enchanting blend of rustic charm and vibrant energy. It’s a season that encourages us to slow down, embrace the changing landscape, and find comfort in the simple pleasures of life. As we gather around crackling fires and take leisurely strolls through pumpkin patches, we can’t help but be entranced by the magic of this season.

The Pumpkin: Nature’s Emblem of Fall

One of the defining symbols of fall, the pumpkin embodies the spirit of the season. With its rich, earthy hues and warm, comforting flavor, the pumpkin has a way of connecting us to the very essence of autumn. From adorning our doorsteps with Jack-o’-lanterns to filling our kitchens with the aroma of freshly baked pumpkin treats, this versatile gourd adds a touch of enchantment to our lives.

Savoring the Bounty: Pumpkin Recipes

To fully embrace the fall season, what better way than to indulge in some pumpkin-inspired culinary creations? Let’s explore a few pumpkin recipes that celebrate the diverse and delectable aspects of this autumn icon:

1. Pumpkin Spice Latte

  • Start your day with a warm hug from a homemade Pumpkin Spice Latte. This delightful concoction of espresso, pumpkin puree, and a dash of spices will awaken your senses and fill your morning with the essence of fall.
Pumpkin Spice Latte by Ambitious Kitchen

2. Roasted Pumpkin Soup

  • There’s nothing quite like a bowl of Roasted Pumpkin Soup to comfort your soul on a chilly autumn evening. The roasted pumpkin brings a depth of flavor, while a hint of cream adds a touch of indulgence. In this recipe the added touch of pesto makes it perfect.
Roasted Pumpkin Soup with Pesto by Lindsey Eats

3. Pumpkin Risotto

  • Elevate your dinner with a creamy Pumpkin Risotto. The subtle sweetness of the pumpkin melds beautifully with Arborio rice, creating a dish that’s both comforting and elegant.
Pumpkin and Mushroom Risotto by The Healthful Ideas

4. Pumpkin Bread

  • For a timeless treat, bake a loaf of moist and aromatic Pumpkin Bread. The scent of cinnamon and nutmeg wafting through your kitchen is the quintessential aroma of fall.
Healthy Pumpkin Bread with Maple Glaze by Ambitious Kitchen

5. Pumpkin Pie

  • No ode to fall would be complete without Pumpkin Pie. This classic dessert, with its flaky crust and velvety pumpkin filling, embodies the very essence of autumn. Top it with a dollop of freshly whipped cream for a truly indulgent experience.
The Great Pumpkin Pie Recipe by Sally’s Baking Recipes

The Essence of Fall

Fall is a season that embraces us with its beauty and warmth, urging us to take a moment to savor the little things in life. It reminds us of the simple pleasures of nature’s bounty and the comfort of home-cooked meals. As we revel in the pumpkin’s earthly sweetness, let’s remember that autumn is more than a season; it’s a feeling, a sensation, and a state of mind. It’s a reminder to slow down, cherish the present moment, and find joy in the everyday.

Wishing you a cozy and pumpkin-filled autumn.

The Art of Slow Living: Prioritizing What Truly Matters

In a world where the pace of life seems to be perpetually accelerating, the concept of “slow living” has gained a remarkable following. It’s not just about indulging in life’s pleasures, like a walk in the woods, baking homemade bread, or losing yourself in the pages of a good book. Slow living goes much deeper, and at its core, it’s about taking the time necessary to create and make space for something truly great. It’s about deliberately slowing down to focus on what matters most to you. For many, myself included, slow living is all about deciding what truly matters and having the courage to say no to everything else. It’s about living a simpler, more intentional life so that you can allocate your most precious resource—time—to the things that hold the most significance in your heart.

Finding Meaning in Slow Living

In today’s fast-paced world, the art of slow living might seem like an unattainable luxury, an idealistic notion reserved for those who can afford it. However, the truth is, slow living is not a lifestyle restricted to a certain demographic; it’s a mindset accessible to anyone willing to make a few intentional choices.

Slow living is the antithesis of the chaotic, always-rushing culture that pervades our lives. It’s an invitation to pause, breathe, and reflect. The essence of slow living is not just about savoring life’s simple pleasures, but about consciously curating your life to focus on what truly enriches it. It’s a commitment to being present in each moment, rather than constantly racing toward the next one.

Prioritizing What Matters

At the heart of slow living is the practice of intentional prioritization. It’s about identifying your values, your passions, and your true purpose in life. Once you’ve established these core principles, you can then dedicate your time and energy accordingly.

In a world brimming with endless distractions and opportunities, it’s crucial to learn the art of saying no. Slow living is about having the strength to decline commitments and engagements that do not align with your core values. It means cutting out the unnecessary noise in your life to create a space for the things that genuinely matter to you.

Cultivating Richness in Time

One of the most significant dividends of embracing slow living is the newfound wealth of time that you’ll discover. When you declutter your life and free yourself from the incessant hustle, you can redirect your precious hours toward activities that truly enrich your life.

Imagine having time to nurture your relationships, pursue your passion projects, and invest in your own personal growth. Picture having the leisure to prepare and savor homemade meals, to travel without rushing, and to meditate in tranquility. Slow living is, in essence, the art of being rich in time, rather than being constantly on the run, chasing a mirage of success.

The Slow Living Journey

The journey towards slow living is a personal one. It requires self-reflection, intentionality, and a willingness to break free from the societal pressure to be constantly busy. Here are a few practical steps to get you started on this meaningful journey:

1. Identify Your Values: Take time to reflect on what truly matters to you in life. What are your core values and priorities?

2. Declutter Your Life: De-clutter your physical and digital spaces. Simplify your surroundings to create an environment that promotes calm and focus.

3. Say No: Learn to say no to commitments and distractions that do not align with your values. Your time is precious; guard it carefully.

4. Embrace Mindfulness: Practice mindfulness in your daily life. Be fully present in the moment, whether it’s during a meal, a walk, or a conversation with a loved one.

5. Create a Slow Living Routine: Establish daily rituals that encourage a slower pace of life. This could include time for meditation, nature walks, or simply enjoying a cup of tea without rushing.

Slow living is a conscious choice to break free from the relentless race and to invest your time where it truly matters. It’s about simplifying, prioritizing, and, in doing so, discovering the incredible richness that comes from being rich in time. By embracing this way of life, we can savor the sweetness of existence, find meaning in our daily experiences, and create something great, both for ourselves and the world around us. So, why not take a step back, breathe, and embark on your own journey of slow living? Your heart will thank you for it.

4 Tips and Tricks to Make Your Home Cozy

In the words of theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer, “Most people have forgotten nowadays what a house can mean, though some of us have come to realize it as never before. It is a kingdom of its own in the midst of the world, a stronghold amid life’s storms and stresses, a refuge, even a sanctuary.” 

Cozy cottage designed by Krister Allen – Straight Line Building Design

More than ever, we need our homes to be places of refuge within the disorder of life. How you decorate your space will make a significant difference in your mood and quality of life.

Add Natural Textures

Natural textures add depth and comfort to your home.

For instance, touches of wood connect those inside to the outside world. You can mix wood tones in your design,  just keep to either warm or cool undertones, and pick one kind of wood for your dominant feature.

Grasses are also a perfect textural addition, as are organic cotton elements and knitted throws. For your knitted throws and pillows, choose larger weaves that are more visually interesting and are popular right now in interior design.

For a comfortable room, add some pattern to the walls and bring in living plants. You don’t want a jungle, but some living greenery brings an oasis of life (and oxygen) to your  home. We now have our designs on Wallpaper as a collaboration with Mitchell Black both in premium matte paper and easy peel & stick so that you can do it yourself.

A buttery, leather armchair is the perfect, cozy add-in texture for a room, especially when there are lots of books nearby. Designers are also making wonderful creations with vegan leather these days.

Add Something Plush

A few luxurious accent pieces will add a plushness to your textures and bring in an element of coziness. A velvet chair or a faux fur throw pillow is all you need.


Green visors became popular in the late 1800s. Worn by accountants, editors, and telegraph operators to reduce eye strain from overhead lighting, they’re still sold today. This invention shows us just how hard overhead lighting can be on our eyes, which keeps any room from being a cozy retreat. 

In a feature in the Style section of The New York Times, it was reported that “while several studies show that the angle, intensity, color and quality of light can have a profound impact on perception and mood, lighting remains an oft-neglected aspect of interior design. “People just don’t realize how much lighting affects them,” said Robin Muto, an interior designer in Rochester, N.Y. “Even if you’re not in a bathroom looking at yourself in the mirror, if you’re looking at other people in lighting that makes them look dreary, drawn and horrible, you start to feel that way, too.”

To counter this problem, think less overhead glare and more soft, golden glows from table-height lamps. Also, light sources that direct lighting to the ceilings rather than downward softens a room.

Use overhead lighting when you’re looking for your keys or mopping the floor and need to see hidden dirt in the corners. Otherwise, “find fixtures that can be angled so light bounces off the walls and hits people at a side angle. Also effective are so-called wall washers — fixtures designed so light bounces off baffles or reflectors inside the housing, which then directs the light out more horizontally than vertically.”


Art is deeply personal, and we can’t dictate what kind you should collect for your home. However, for areas that you long to make particularly tranquil, consider softer colors and subjects. 

Look for something that brings a holiness to quiet places, calms your mind, and comforts your heart. For instance, consider art that focuses on natural themes.

“Human beings are naturally drawn to vastness in scenery,” says  renowned artist and Chair of the Department of Art and Art History David Chang. “Landscape throughout history has served the rich and poor, it’s given that quality of nature brought home. The vastness is the ever-infinite sky, it’s the depth of field, it gives human beings this calming quality. Artist or not, rich or poor, we all have that response. I’ve met very few people who would open the window on a beachfront hotel or house without saying, ‘Wow.'” 

As always, we wish you the best in creating a sanctuary for you and your family. Thank you for letting us be a part of your journey.

How To: Easy Crowd Pleaser Meals That are Ready in a Snap

Nothing is better than gathering together with the people who make our lives rich and meaningful. 

In the end, we’ll find that the friends and family who’ve made up the fabric of our lives were more precious than money or any worldly success.

As Clarence the Angel says to George Bailey in It’s a Wonderful Life, “Remember-No man is a failure who has friends.”

Yes, friends are wonderful. But what do you feed them all?

When I need to fill up a lot of people fast, I find pasta is always a popular choice or my rustic chicken recipe.

My go-to is to put out a platter loaded with mounds of grapes and any other fresh fruit I can find that looks particularly delectable, an array of interesting cheeses, and then I serve a large pasta bake that can be assembled ahead of time. 

The bake I used to rely on was inspired by Saveur magazine. It called for ground veal, but I substituted ground chicken because, well, baby cows. 

Photo by Tina Rupp

However, this recipe based on  Food and Wine Magazine is made for the host in a hurry. It uses pre-made flatbread instead of noodles, so you can assemble the meal quickly and get it into the oven.

Flatbread Lasagna


  • 1 pound hot spicy chicken sausage, casings removed 
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups ricotta
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 3 cups jarred marinara sauce (Ina Garten uses Rao’s in her home)
  • 4 pocketless pita or naan (why not pick them up from your favorite Indian restaurant to make the dish truly divine?)
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella (12 ounces)


  • Step 1
    Preheat the oven to 350°. In a skillet, cook the sausages in the oil over moderately high heat, breaking up the meat, until browned. Season the ricotta with salt and pepper. Spread 1/2 cup of the marinara sauce in a deep-dish pie plate. Top with 1 flatbread, one-third of the sausage and 1/2 cup each of the ricotta and mozzarella. Repeat the layering twice more. Add 1/2 cup of sauce and the last flatbread. Top with the remaining 1 cup of sauce and 1/2 cup of mozzarella.
  • Step 2
    Cover the lasagna with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake 30 minutes longer. Let cool for 20 minutes and serve. Serves 6-8. Make two when you have a huge crowd. More is always better.

Suggested Pairing


How to Create the Perfect Picnic

Whether you’re camping out in front of the fireplace at home or outside appreciating the scenery, there’s nothing quite like a picnic for changing up your routine and enjoying some quality time with the people you love.

If you’re in front of the fireplace or on your back porch, you don’t have to be too worried about forgetting something because you can just run back inside if you need anything. 

But if you’re trekking out to that sublime spot in the mountains or by that luscious blue lake your family has always loved, you’ll want to make sure you’re organized.

First, make a list of everything you need. Think of the basics we take for granted at home, such as salt, silverware, a corkscrew and napkins. Check off your list as each item is packed.

Don’t forget to pack heavier items on the bottom!

The Food

Plan on foods that can be served cold, and that with some ice packs, will keep their shape and flavor. For instance, dessert bars will hold up better than anything delicate, such as a creamy Napoleon or chocolate mousse cake.

A cheese board is always a welcome addition to a picnic, especially when paired with some juicy easy-to-eat fruit such as grapes, strawberries and cherries.

Cold fried or grilled chicken is a picnic staple. Sandwiches on sturdy bread and wraps are also ideal.

If you’ve never made bierocks, they’re favorite farmer fare brought over from Europe to the Midwest. Traditionally, it’s a bun stuffed with beef, cabbage, onions and cheese. However, we’ve been interested in a lighter, meatless version that’s been increasingly popular. Most recipes, like this one, substitute mushrooms for the meat. However, you could use any of your favorite sauteed vegetables. A baked veggie bierock makes a delicious and tidy picnic food.

If you’re going to pack salad, pack the dressing separately unless you’re preparing a sturdier pasta veggie pasta or something like coleslaw. 


Part of the loveliness of a picnic is sitting in the grass under a tree with the blue sky overhead. Don’t forget the elements that add that touch of beauty that makes a picnic truly memorable. Bring folding chairs for those who need them and spread out a beautiful tablecloth with some napkins.

And if someone plays the guitar, then by all means bring it. A portable player works, too.

Have a lovely time.

Classic Mint Juleps for Lazy Summer Days

“They say that you may always know the grave of a Virginian as, from the quantity of julep he has drunk, mint invariably springs up where he has been buried.”
Frederick Marryat, 1839

Memorial Day weekend is heralded as the unofficial start to summer, a time to kick up your heels and relax with friends and family. What I did not know is that on May 30th every year it’s also National Mint Julep Day. The mint julep originated in the south with first mentions of the drink in the late eighteenth century in Virginia taverns. In 1938, Churchill Downs started promoting the drink for the Kentucky Derby and each year around 120,000 juleps are served over the two day event.

The recipe can vary but it is very simple to make with just a few ingredients. Spearmint is the mint of choice typically and so refreshing.

Photo by Honestly Yum

Mint Julep by Honestly Yum

This iconic cocktail is so simple to make, yet there are a few tricks that will make your juleps a guaranteed winner.Servings: 1 cocktail



  1. Start by removing the mint leaves from their stems and place in the bottom of the julep cup. Add simple syrup and muddle very lightly. If you don’t have a muddler you can use the back of a spoon. The goal is not to break apart the mint, but rather to release the oils from the mint, infusing the simple syrup with mint flavor.
  2. Next, add the bourbon and fill half of the julep cup with crushed ice. Stir using a bar spoon or swizzle stick so that the mint, syrup, bourbon and ice are thoroughly mixed. I crushed my ice in a food processor, but you can also use a blender or a lewis bag and mallet.
  3. Now that all of the ingredients have been added and you’ve given a quick stir, add even more ice. You’ll want to fill with crushed ice up and over the rim of the julep cup. At this point your drink will be ice-cold, and your cup frosty with condensation.
  4. Lastly, garnish with a large sprig of mint. Place your straw next to the garnish so you can smell the fresh mint while you sip.
Photo by Honestly Yum

How to: Fold Cloth Napkins With Silverware

When you’re entertaining, it’s the small and simple touches that can make all the difference. Candles flickering in your mother’s heirloom candleholders, fresh flowers from the garden, the fruit from the farmers market, and that signature dish that always gets raves from your guests. 

We appreciate being a part of your gatherings with friends and family. As you probably know, we work with a small team in India to design and manufacture our lovely block-printed textile patterns and linens. We’re committed to safely producing eco-friendly tablecloths, napkins, dish towels and scarves using mill-made cotton and natural dyes.

We make our cloth dinner napkins in hopes that they will be a special addition to your memorable moments when you connect with friends, family and loved ones over a meal.

With that in mind, we thought it might be fun to go over a few ways to fold your napkins to feature silverware. 

Napkin Origami Horn

This lovely creation comes from Love to Know. To me, it looks like a dress with three layering hems, turned upside-down:

  • “Start with the finished side of your napkin face down. Fold the napkin in half vertically, then fold in half once more to make a square. Press the folds lightly with your iron if needed.
  • Place the napkin in front of you in a diamond position with the open ends at the top. Fold each layer of the napkin back, tucking it in so the seam is not visible. Space the layers roughly one inch apart, taking care to make the folds as neat as possible.
  • Flip the napkin over and fold the left point across the right point. Flip the napkin back to the original position, then add any silverware that is desired. Alternatively, this design could be used to hold flowers or other decorative accents for your table.”

Simple Rectangular Wrap

This easy, no-fuss fold comes from WikiHow:

  • Place the napkin flat on the table. Fold up the bottom two to three inches evenly across the bottom. 
  • Place the silverware in the pocket, nesting together if needed to keep the bundle small. Place the flatware so the bottom of the handles touch the inner fold. Also, place the bundles about two inches from the right.
  • Then fold the top half over the silverware so ends meet. Then simply roll, starting from the right, and secure the bundle with a ribbon, a piece of twine, or whatever goes with your decor. 

Basic Silverware Pouch

This classic favorite comes from napkinfoldingguide.com:

  • Lay the napkin face-down in front of you.
  • Fold the napkin in half and orient the open end toward you.
  • Fold the napkin into quarters.
  • Orient the napkin so the open corner is facing away and to the left.
  • Fold the top-most layer of napkin in half diagonally and press it down.
  • Turn the napkin over so that the open corner is now facing away and to the right.
  • Fold the right-side back about 1/3 of the way and press it down.
  • Fold the left-side back also about 1/3 of the way and press.
  • Flip it over, straighten it up and insert those shiny eating instruments.” 

Enjoy, friends. Wishing you the best of times.

“The essence of great entertaining: a seemingly effortless combination of authentic food and imagination presented with a personal touch and enjoyed in good company.”

― Annie Falk

5 Spring Decorating Ideas For Your Living Space

Bouquet of rose flowers near window with curtain – Adding a few flowers can brighten up any room!

When spring rolls in, it’s time to lighten and brighten your home decor. Hopefully, you’ve had time to do some deep spring cleaning and now have all the possibilities spread out before you.

Can you imagine your home as a canvas? You are the artist that makes your space the cozy charmer it is and can be.

And now, as the earth renews itself, there is something in the riot of flowers and greenery that makes us want to put our living space through its own renewal, too.

Let’s look at a few ideas of what can be done to freshen up and beautify your home.


Take a look at your walls. If they’re leaning towards darker, deeper colors you might consider rotating some of your artwork with the season. 

To draw from the powerful rejuvenation of spring and to be “so much sunshine to the square inch,” to quote Walt Whitman, bring Nature inside and slather it on your walls. 

Look over a room you want to change. Do you want a space that sings with color? Or do you want a room that makes you feel calm and peaceful with the softness of spring pastels? Perhaps it’s a touch of coastal beauty that you long for.

Expand your horizons and check out the appeal of some abstract nature artists. They bring the outside into your home. Some do so with more of the emotion of a natural setting rather than with the rigidity of realism.

Capital Reef Abstract by Tate Fairbanks

To get an idea of abstract nature paintings, check out new artist Tate Fairbanks at the TSC Gallery or the available collections at Saatchi Art

Small Changes with Color

If you’re up to painting a room or an accent wall, yes–that will dramatically change your living space and brighten your environment. Luxe paint company Farrow & Ball have an eco-friendly product and employ consultants to help you pick the right colors for your home. At the very least, their online galleries are a great place to get some inspiration.

However, if you don’t have the time or inclination for a painting project, add pops of color with new lampshades, pillows, and maybe a cheerfully painted cabinet.

Embroidered Cockatoo Lamp Shade by Anthropologie

Blush seems to be the choice of the current season. We’re seeing a lot of layering with different shades of this soft color. Our blushy rosefinch is a perfect neutral pink to add that won’t clash with other hues, but be sure to check all of the pinks if you want to add this trend to your home.

However, just because this popular color is in vogue, doesn’t mean it’s right for you if it isn’t your style. Find some throws, table linens, and pillows in spring colors that thrill you!


Take down any heavy draperies and replace with lighter, brighter fabric. Perhaps replace with sheers, or really let the light in by letting your windows go nude in rooms where you don’t need more privacy at night. Especially if the windows or the views are particularly pretty.


Flower cuttings are a gorgeous addition to any room. And, consider some permanent plant fixtures for your home, too. Green is the color of spring, and when it’s in our homes it tends to raise our contentment levels to blissful, new levels.

According to The Sill, “indoor plants don’t just look good – they can make us feel good, too. Studies have shown that indoor plants…

  • Boost your mood, productivity, concentration and creativity
  • Reduce your stress, fatigue, sore throats and colds
  • Help clean indoor air by absorbing toxins, increasing humidity & producing oxygen
  • Add life to a sterile space, give privacy and reduce noise levels
  • Are therapeutic to care for (it’s true when we say Plants Make People Happy)” 

Light Fixtures

Rather than lots of tiny changes, perhaps choose one big one. Update a light fixture in your home with something that’s a bit of a show off. You could look at fixtures made from a lighter material or pick pendant lights made with colored glass, like these modern Nordic fixtures from Lampswell.

We’d love to see your design choices. Send pictures of your favorite spring changes. Good luck!

The Art of Spring Tablescaping

Photo by: Claudia Reese

The beautiful spring came, and when nature resumes her loveliness, the human soul is apt to revive also. ~ Harriet Ann Jacobs

Spring sometimes comes with a shock of hope.

When winter lasts and lingers, sometimes we forget there is even such a thing as spring. We know, of course, the season exists–intellectually speaking. But sometimes our hearts forget.

When spring comes, it brings in all kinds and colors of joy. It’s reflected in the art we create, the food we make, and the way we add its life and hues to our homes–which is an art form all on its own.

Maybe we remember how much our grandmother loved lilacs, and we may stop and appreciate their beauty in her honor and bring in cuttings for the table.

Because the spring of the now ties into the seasons of the past, and it makes us happy to incorporate the memories of the bygone years. So if it isn’t spring for you until your garden is covered in poppies, then bring on the poppies!

And take your own sacred version of the season and bring it to your table for a gorgeous, personal space. 

Here are some of our favorite tips.


Flowers aren’t everything when it comes to spring tablescaping, but it’s they’re certainly a great place to start.

When you pick the color scheme of your floral design, then you know what you need to do to tie in the rest of the table. Many people choose tableware that’s neutral and then use napkins to mirror the natural colors of the centerpiece.

Consider choosing long, lower containers for the flower so your guests can still see each other. Or, you could use multiple smaller vases filled with loose bouquets and spaced in between the sightline.

Also, make sure the table isn’t so crowded that your friends can’t eat comfortably. If the plates are crowded, you may have overdone it and need to pull back on fashion in favor of function.

A Decorative Gift

A lovely touch for your guests is to place a small offering on their plate. 

You can use a rustic or silvery charger topped with a large plate and then a smaller one on top, which is often the layered plating chosen for spring, and then add a small decorative present for your guests on the smallest plate. 

For instance, you could place a pretty woven nest on each place setting filled with a trio of foil-wrapped or other egg-shaped treats. Or, place a large chocolate egg in an egg cup. You can also use the nest or cup as a placeholder, adding a pretty, personalized paper nameplate.

A container with a small bouquet at each place is a beautiful touch. You could also choose a living plant, turning your table into a ”host of golden daffodils” or another profusion of blooms that your guests can take home with them.

Go Local and In Season

What does spring look like where you live? The happiest blossoms in your region can often be the best choice for your tablescape. But don’t be limited by flowers; a centerpiece of greens can be transported on its own. Also, local fruit can be incorporated into your design. 

Shop your local farmers market with an eye to tablescaping. You might find some excellent ideas you’d never considered.

If using fruit, make sure they’re clean in case your guests want to eat those beautiful grapes, peaches–or whatever you’ve chosen–for their dessert.


Laura Remmert, the owner of Laura Remmert Events, states that “adding a pop of color with your glassware is both a playful and elegant addition to any spring tablescape. A fun twist on classic black and white—the green accent glass brings a colorful touch to … tabletop design perfectly tying in the natural green in the flowers.” 

Photo by: Claudia Reese

This seems to work particularly well if you’re using white or pale blossoms for your spring tablescape. 

Extend Your Tablescape

Don’t leave your design all clumped together in the middle of the table. Extend your creation with a natural table runner such as greens or a collection of thin branches. You can also use a tablecloth folded lengthwise into thirds. In this case, we prefer organic cotton with natural dyes.

Also, a collection of small white, pastel, or silver candlesticks placed from the center of the table outwards will also extend your design. 

Happy hosting, friends! We hope you’re enjoying this spring season as much as we are.

A Classic Fiddlehead Ferns Recipe

Growing up, fiddlehead ferns were a mysterious food that other people ate. People in Maine, for instance.

Then there were poets:

Fiddlehead Ferns

By Matthew Dickman


Olive seashells

in the air

you can eat.

The very inner of the inner ear

in the breeze.

Last night my son dreamt

about falling

out of trees.

I had almost forgotten

that we were


The fiddlehead turns

on itself but only ever in love.

Green cinnamon roll,

a snake too small to hunt


Curled in like my son’s

fingers, his fists.

More beautiful than

a spider fern,

spun-in island,

moldy tongue of a hippopotamus,

the eye of the forest.

 And then, there were people in books. (Usually books about people in Maine).

In one novel, a lost girl survived her hunger by munching the curled greenery as she hiked through an endless forest. In others, it was long-limbed, somewhat artsy women who knew the secrets of the river bottom and would bring clusters of the curled tops home to their charming cottages in the woods.

But like mushrooms, it’s not just any frond curled like a violin’s scroll from just any fern. Some are not edible. Some are toxic. However, unlike mushrooms, it seems when people make foraging mistakes with ferns, they tend to get sick rather than facing possible death like with mushrooms mistakes.

Still, not a blunder anyone wants to make.

Unless someone in the know can teach you what ferns you can eat look like–apparently a u-shaped groove in the ostrich fern, and which ones to avoid–perhaps stick to the experts at your local market. 

Here’s what Food and Wine Magazine  has to say:

Where: Fiddleheads can be found in much of the United States as well as Europe, Asia and Canada: In fact, Tide Head, New Brunswick, calls itself the Fiddlehead Capital of the World.

When: May.

What to look for: Small coils that are tightly wound up. Fiddleheads should be a vibrant bright green, unless they are still covered in their brown papery skin. The skin should come off easily when rubbed. Purchase or pick only ostrich fern fiddleheads, as they are the safest for consumption.

Flavor profile: Fiddleheads are sweet like asparagus, grassy and snappy like a great green bean, with a touch of broccoli stem.

Health benefits: Rich in potassium, iron, antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids, fiddleheads are fantastically healthy.

How to eat them: Because ostrich ferns contain a trace amount of a toxin, you should never eat them raw. (Not that you would want to—they are quite bitter when raw.) Cook them for at least 5 minutes. First, prep the fiddleheads by rinsing them and rubbing off any papery brown skin. Then they can be steamed, braised, sautéed, roasted or pickled (after blanching).

Basically, you want to treat fiddleheads like you do asparagus. But for our classic recipe, let’s add some eggs and goat cheese. In the words of writer Catherine Johnson:

Yes, ferns just love to celebrate

All things glorious, green and new.

Until they wind up on your plate

 In a frittata made for two.

Fiddlehead Frittata with Bacon and Chevre- adapted from Salt in My Coffee


  • 1 lb organic red potatoes, chopped
  • 12 ounces fiddleheads, cleaned
  • 4 shallots (or one medium onion)
  • 12 large eggs (or 10 duck eggs)
  • 4 slices thick-cut turkey bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 8 ounces chopped or shredded cheddar cheese
  • 4 ounces crumbled chevre
  • olive oil, butter, or bacon fat for frying


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  2. In a deep cast iron pan, saute fiddleheads, chopped potatoes, and diced shallots, in a generous amount of butter, olive oil, or bacon fat. Cook over medium-low heat until fiddleheads are fiddleheads and potatoes are tender, and shallots are getting translucent – about 15-20 minutes.
  3. Whisk together eggs and cheese in a large bowl, then add to the pan with the fiddlehead mixture. If you’d like to skip dirtying a bowl, just add the cheese and eggs directly to the pan, mixing vigorously as you crack in each egg.
  4. Stir everything well so that it’s thoroughly mixed, then put the whole thing in the oven. Bake until the center is set, and the frittata is golden brown – about 35 minutes.
  5. Cool slightly, and serve.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to paint a landscape in my charming cottage and then go foraging for fiddleheads.

Happy eating!