Color Motive- Lisbon Bear

For some weekend color inspiration, a picture from our trip to Portugal a few years back. A combination of some of my current faves- lovely tiled patterns, an unapologetic red & an old true love- Mr. Contemplating Bear himself. (photo- Char Lee Dickerson)

Golden Indeed!

Last week my dear friend Rose of The Great Lakes came to visit us in our neck of NYS. She is an old school classy lady who always brings a hostess gift- thoughtful trinkets, or fresh flowers or sweets (or in my case all of the above- ha!). This visit she also brought me the best of treats- some goods she developed for Chronicle Books! I’ve been impatiently waiting the completion of these for awhile now- and man was it worth the wait. Her Stay Golden journal is so thoughtful and well done it makes me want to get stories of positivity and cheer out of my head and onto it’s pages. And her Color-Me-In notecard set is amazing- the packaging, the concept- her artwork…all of it! You can’t see it from the pics online- but the backs of the cards also have a “feeling color wheel” to add that extra personal touch specifically for your recipient. SO good!

Lime, Lemon + Blood Orange

A few weeks ago was our 1 year anniversary of being in our home so I baked James favorite treat that I make- a yogurt cake. Long ago I found this recipe from  Bon Apetit & every time I make it I tend to adapt it differently. This time I made mini bundts instead of a loaf and altered the recipe for a multi citrus taste. Mostly I wanted an excuse to use a blood orange olive oil James has.

  • Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup plain whole-milk yogurt
  • 1 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon (packed) finely grated lime peel
  • 1 teaspoon (packed) finely grated lemon peel
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup oil (i used orange infused olive but reg. olive oil would be fine)
  • 1/2 tablespoon lime juice

Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 350°F. I used a well greased 6 cake mini bundt pan while the original suggests an 8 1/2×4 1/2×2 1/2-inch metal loaf pan. Sift flour, baking powder, and salt into medium bowl. Combine yogurt, sugar, eggs, lemon & lime peel, and vanilla in large bowl; whisk until well blended. Gradually whisk in dry ingredients. Using rubber spatula, fold in oil. Transfer batter to prepared pan. Place pan on baking sheet.

Place in oven and bake until cake begins to pull away from sides of pan and tester inserted into center comes out clean. My minis took 25-30 min. but a larger pan might take about 50 minutes. Cool cake in pan on rack 5 minutes.

Instead of a glaze I just dusted with confectioners. For the little dallop on top I mixed equal parts cream cheese & vanilla yogurt with a touch of agave syrup, dashed some sprinkles and added a lemon drop candy.

Fine Dinnering

Last nite’s pancakes for dinner! A la mode with blueberry frozen yogurt, James’ homemade whip cream, fresh strawberries and agave nectar. Our home’s best once a season ritual according to popular opinion.

Kilim Letterpress

Our new letterpress tags. Ok, so I can’t afford the kilim inspired rug of my dreams right now… but I sure can adorn all the Valentines Day baked gifts I’ll be giving out with these.

Booze Motive- Audrey Clementine

Lately I’ve been fine tuning my cocktail hour skills. Probably just so I have an excuse to amass things like beautiful bottles of St. Germain, fine tawny ports and a hand-turned walnut-wood muddler. I’m slowly learning and adapting old timey recipes and creating a few of my own. The stretch of  “clementine season” forged my favorite drink yet. I’m calling it an Audrey Clementine!

1 oz Apricot Brandy

1/2 oz Vodka

1 1/2 oz Patron Citronge

fresh squeezed juice of 1 1/2 Clementines

Twist of peel for garnish

splash of sodawater

…Juice clementines into cocktail shaker, add brandy, vodka & Citronge. Fill shaker with ice & shake vigorously. Strain into a champagne coupe, add garnish, and lastly- beware! These go down easy & quick.


Sorrows to the Universe

So. Our new dog that I love ate the engagement ring that I loved a couple weeks ago. We did all the right things to get it back if it was going to be found or got back. Such was not to be the case with my perfect edwardian platinum + ruby token given to me by the boy i love. I dealt with it the only way i could. I allowed myself a week to  wallow in self-pity and mourn.  And then I reminded myself that as much as my heart hurts- the people I love are safe, warm & fed, and that is way more than millions of people on this earth can claim. Who knows- eons from now we might replace it with something similar. In the near future we will replace it with something new that doesn’t dent our savings. I dug up this picture of my ring… sitting on my favorite up in the air somewhere tiny gold lip dish. At least the dog didn’t eat that too!


Happy Chinese New Year

Today I am remembering my family overseas and my ancestors- (just look at that pic of my beautiful grandmother!). It’s also a fine day to let go any grudges and grievances. Here’s hoping your doors of happiness and good fortune swing wide open for you in the year of the Dragon!


Love this postcard from Tabletop Made’s etsy shop! Lets hear three cheers for snail mail & the handwriiten note.

Wolf Pack V-day Special


Just listed this years shop special for that day of cupid’s reckoning… A special priced set of 4 Wolfie Sentiments letterpress cards. You must love at least 4 people right? Or- I dunno, if you are bitterly coal-hearted just send all 4 to yourself & revel in the sinister decadence of choking out sweet sentiments in the world! Nab a set here.
© 2012, Pearl & Marmalade, LLC