House Beautiful

Tag Archive for 'Christmas'

10 Good Things.

Merry Christmas Eve!  You know you’re still in your sweatpants (if you’re even up yet), nuzzled in a blanket in front of the Christmas tree, cruising the internet with HGTV on in the background.  Ahhhh, glorious.  Or if you’re Karrie, you won’t be awake for another 2 hours.  And if you’re me, then you have a bowl of pappardelle & meatballs in your lap for breakfast.  Whoops.  #wheninindiana

Anyhow.  Here’s a quick stream of consciousness for your marination station:

PEAR & THYME MIMOSAS {for cocktail hour tonight}

1 chilled bottle of Prosecco or Champagne | 12 oz. pear nectar | 4-6 sprigs of Thyme | Fill each glass with 3 ounces of peach nectar and a sprig of Thyme. Top with Prosecco or Champagne and add an additional sprig of Thyme to garnish. For entertaining, combine chilled wine and pear nectar in a pitcher with 6 sprigs of Thyme.

SALTED CARAMEL DONUTS {for Christmas breakfast tomorrow}

Hit the easy button and pick up the donuts at the grocery store, then either make or buy a jar of salted caramel.  Then dip those bad boys in your morning coffee.  #nomnomnom

SHARING IS CARING {I can’t take it.  Also, I’d like that kid to share his pom pom hat with me permanently.}

PS: the pic below is from this chick’s Pinterest board “Parenthood,” which I immediately followed and suggest you do too.  Everything on it is perfect.

LAST MINUTE DECORATING IDEA {Snag some sage from the fridge and tie it with leftover ribbon or twine.  Bang.}

HOW HILARIOUS IS THIS? {You know it’s true.}

I spent last night stirring meatballs and howling over texts from friends detailing the high-larious and ridiculous antics of their parents.  Gotta love family.  They’re all &$#^% nuts.  Regram via Chairish Co’s Instagram.

PLEASE SANTA CAN I HAVE THIS KITCHEN? {Never have I ever.}

I can’t even pick my favorite part: that pristine hood, the handmade-looking, slightly off-kilter tile backsplash, the reclaimed wood island topped with a slab of perfect carrara, the antique rug or that bad a$$ hardware.

ALSO SANTA… {…these earrings would be great.}

Pipe dream indeed – they’re listed as being from 400 bc.  Source unknown but pin via the amazing Lulu DK / decor goddess / hero of mine.

HAVE YOU EVER SEEN ANYTHING SWEETER? {…cuz I haven’t}

The only thing cuter than: a) babies in sherpa onesies and b) goldens is c) goldens licking giggling, cooing babies in sherpa onesies.

ALSO – THIS GUY:

…who gave the guy next to me on the plane ride home a similar tongue bath, right before he passed out on said guy’s feet after his doggie tranquilizers kicked in.

WHEN I GET BACK TO CALI…

I’m totally getting a beach cruiser so I can snap one of these bad boys onto it.

LAST BUT NOT LEAST {A few wise words…}

…because the holidays are *wonderful*, but they aren’t all sunshine and rainbows for everyone, every year.  Some years they can be bittersweet, or even achingly difficult for people.  So remember to be a little kinder to everyone – there’s never any harm in that, right?  Cuz you just never know what’s going on beneath the surface.  And if you happen to be weathering a tough time this holiday, take some comfort in the poignant words below, because those words are true… whatever’s going on now – however difficult or unnecessarily cruel – is preparing you for something bigger, and there are better times ahead.  That is what I’m telling myself anyway, in the wake of the glorious déjà vu-esque curveball I just got lobbed.  PS: if you aren’t following Megan McGrane on insta yet, you should be.  She’s a wizard.

Merry Christmas Eve!!

xoxo,

Gift Guide #2: For the Boys

Behold: The ultimate gift guide pour les hommes (!) For those odd, Animal-Planet-Like creatures we love.. they always seem so simple in their t-shirt, flannel pants & cereal bowl glory, but every holiday, they’re next-to-impossible to buy for.  Why is that??

…Anyhow.  We sifted through the sea of swirly twirly gumdrops out there for guys – through all the wood grain cufflinks and lunchbox-sized portable grills, which (no offense) *sound* like a good idea buuuuuuuut…  those cufflinks will have dust by Valentine’s Day, and next football season, the itty bitty weiner-griller ends up being able to hold enough hot dogs for 1.5 people (or 5 Smurfs) at the tailgate.  SO – with a seriously discerning eye + the approval of a few super studs, this is what we came up with:

1 – AVIATOR CLASSIC RAY BANS, $150.  Show me a guy who doesn’t look amazing in Aviators, and…  God.  I’d probably agree to show you my boobs.  Cuz even Chewbacca would charm just about anyone if he had a pair of these on.  NO ONE LOOKS BAD IN THEM!  We also love the classic gold w/the grey lens.  Baller.

2 – UNTUCK IT ALZERO SHIRT, $89. The same way cute low-rise jeans create unfortunate plumber cracks for girls, apparently too-long to leave out, but look-silly-to-tuck-in button-ups are a big issue for guys. (Ping!), whattayaknow – there’s a company called Untuck It that puts a big plaid Band-Aid on this.  Problem solved.

3 – HESTRA WOOL-LINED DEERSKIN CLASSIC GLOVES, $80. We’ll be stealing these, thanks.  But while we let you guys wear them in the days following Christmas, we’ll watch in awe over what a hard core, rugged lumberjack you are.

4 – TROON MESSENGER BAG FROM KNOMO, $149.  Ahem – No, it’s not a “murse”.  Knomo was created by the guy who created Tumi, so you know they’re legit.  Plus, you’re not a briefcase-carrying Steve Martin in Planes Trains & Automobiles chasing a cab on down Park Ave, cuz it’s just not the 80’s anymore (single tear…).  So out with the briefcases, in with the messengers.  PS:  No joke, whenever I see guys carrying them, they always seem unaffected, put together, literary and sure-of-themselves in a Ryan Gosling sort of way.  Translation: hot.  Plus we love the army canvas & leather detail on this one.

5 – HIMALAYAN SALT TEQUILA / SHOT GLASSES – SET OF 4, $30. Carved from Himalayan Pink Salt (so Fred Flinstone!), and REAL pretty to look at. #everybodywins! They’re also supposed to give off a more nuanced flavor with your tequila than regular salt.  So there’s that.  OMG wait – can I burn votive candles in these??

6 – RAG & BONE DOT POCKET SQUARE, $55. Pocket squares are dapper, they’re classic, and they’ve made a serious comeback.   If anyone has any questions about that, please see below.

7 – BASEBALL BAT BOTTLE OPENERS, $95-$125.  I always trust Uncommon Goods to come up with amazing gifts…  they’re the same people behind the etched city map glasses I put on my gift guide in 2012…  (while we’re at it, how cool are these??) Anyhow..  the bottle openers below are made from game-day bats from your guy’s favorite team.  Cubbies?  Check.  Sox?  Check.  I meeeeeeean…  you didn’t go to Kohl’s and grab him the sweater that was on sale in a heaping pile on the first rack you saw cuz you were hurrying to check the boxes in your shopping list.  You got him a bottle opener made from the bat Babe Ruth probably used before he cracked a bat hitting a HOMERUN in the who-knows-what-year-it-was World Series.  And I bet he’ll think of you every time he cracks an icy Smirnoff Ice Stella with it.

8 – STEPH’S PERFECT EGG SANDWICH.  Everybody loves something homemade and heartfelt, right??  This is my recipe, and I hate to toot my horn, but it’s seriously the best.  It’s never met a soul who didn’t love it.  Perfect for lazy Sunday mornings.

Ingredients (serves 2):

-Loaf of fresh bread (sourdough, whole wheat, white – your call)

-About 10 slices of bacon

-2 handfuls of arugula

-4 slices of Habanero cheese (NOT PEPPER JACK.  Sorry.)

-A few pads of butter (the good salty kind)

-4 eggs

Directions:

1.  Fry bacon in a pan over medium to medium high heat till crispy but not burned. Remove and let it cool on a paper towel.

2.  Drain some but not all of the grease in the skillet – you want the bacon grease to coat the base of the pan so you can fry the eggs in it.

3.  Crack all 4 eggs in skillet and let ‘em sizzle for a sec while you sprinkle flaked seat salt and a little pepper on.  It should still be medium to medium-high…  not so hot that you smell them burning, but hot enough that once you crack the egg, it doesn’t spread out forever, it cooks enough to catch itself.

4.  While the 1st side of the eggs are cooking, cut a few pieces of fresh bread and pop in the toaster.

5.  Turn eggs, then turn skillet down to low.  They’re probably almost cooked through, so you just need to finish cooking the other side so you don’t get salmonella.  But you don’t want to burn them.  Sprinkle with salt & pepper again, and wait until they’re about over medium.

6.  Take bread out of toaster, butter slices, then immediately put habanero cheese on while the toast is still hot so it starts to melt in.  Place now-cheesy slices on the serving plates, then remove over-medium eggs from pan, placing 2 eggs on each open-face piece of bread on each plate.  The eggs should start melting the cheese into the bread.

7.  Break each bacon strip into 2 or 3 pieces, and layer on top of egg.

8.  Grab a handful of arugula, crush in your hand, then put on top of bacon.  Repeat on other plate.

9.  Top with the other slice of bread.  I usually give the whole thing a smoosh to meld some of the ingredients together, and so some of the yolk spills out.

10.  Draw a smiley face – or whatever you want – on the plate with Sriracha. Because there is nothing better to dip your egg sandwich in than Sriracha.

__________

9 – BOOTS No7 RAPID REVIVAL EYE ROLL-ON, $12.74.  One of our closest friends’ husbands – who is like the male version of OP (aka has the most refined and best taste in everything, always) – swears by this.  Keep it in the fridge, and use it when you haven’t gotten enough sleep, or had a few too many the night before.  Feels like cucumbers on your boy’s eyes, but better.  And makes him look like he slept 12 hours last night.

10 – THE 5 LOVE LANGUAGES, BY GARY CHAPMAN, $9.  We know you think we’re kidding, but we are so serious about this.  I don’t know how many couples – COUPLES – not chicks – I’ve heard rave about this book.  I also just had one of my closest guy friends – an upstanding, talented, successful man with a heart of gold tell me: “Stephie.  This a big statement, but I honestly feel like if I had read this book when x and I were still together, I don’t think we would’ve gotten divorced.”  And I don’t think I realized until my most recent relationship how imperative communication is.  And how HARD it can be if you don’t naturally communicate in the same (love) language – which, next to none of us do. This book helps break some of that down so we can all get on the same page.

11 – ECVISION BED BOLT iPAD HOLDER, $62.99.  …….Tim, can we get you anything??  We could go to Gjelina for brunch, hit the Pasadena flea market, putts down the Promenade and set the kitchen on fire, and he’d never even know we were gone.  #dontblamemeblameyourwife #wecouldleavehimherefordays But seriously – it clamps to the bed, to a desk… to just about anything.  So you no longer have to hold it while you’re doing a Homeland binge.

12 – JAMBOX BY JAWBONE, $129.99-$299.99.  “Turns any phone, tablet or portable device into a hi-def sound system.”  Doesn’t plug in, doesn’t have a dock – just sits there all big pimpin and plays tunes from your phone.  You can also hands-free video chat with it on FaceTime / Skype.  I wish I would’ve known about this on Monday, cuz I would’ve put it on my wishlist.  Comes in a gaggle of pretty colors, in addition to the murdered-out version below.  Which is pretty boss.

13 – GREAT STAPLES FOR HIM:

ALTERNATIVE APPAREL ECO JERSEY RAGLAN HENLEY, $40 (our color pick: eco black / shown).

If I’m generalizing, 99% of dudes despise shopping, but they don’t not appreciate looking dapper & put together.  This is probably why Trunk Club is such a success… Most guys I know just want to be given a cheat sheet for what to buy.  Well Campers…  here you go!  The Alternative Apparel henley looks great on everyone I know who owns it, it’s super affordable, and it never goes out of style.  And if you bought one for your man last year – welp – good thing it’s cold out, because layering is a good look.

J.CREW ITALIAN CASHMERE HENLEY HOODIE, $298.

I do realize the cashmere hoodie is a bit of a splurge, but guys deserve a little luxury too, right?  I’ll be the first to admit that a good ‘ol Werthers Original-esque wool dilf sweater popular on gift guides the world-over looks purdy… But after you buy it and they put it on, 5 minutes later they’re wearing an old sweatshirt… cuz the wool Werthers sweater looked great but felt like an itchy Scotch Brite pad.  (This is also cozy alternative).

UNIQLO V-NECK TEES, $12 now $7.90.

Last staple…  our friend we’ll call Affluenza loves these.

I lied – one more… I hate to sound like a broken record, but the Lulu sweatpants from last year’s gift guide??  Classic, cozy staple.  Perfect for borrowing.  And spooning. #everybodywins!

Hope this helps!  Happy Shopping!!  And if you need more great ideas for guys, check out some of our vintage versions: GIFT GUIDE FOR HIM 2013 | GIFT GUIDE FOR HIM 2012

xoxo,
Steph & Karrie