We made the trek to Marfa, Texas a few weeks back and it ended up being the perfect little getaway. Two days in this little Texas town was just the right amount of time to see << and eat >> everything. Marfa has a personality all its own! Here is the scoop on what we were able to squeeze into the short time we spent in this little art mecca >>
<< WHERE WE STAYED >>
Although we nearly froze at night, << El Cosmico >> was so worth it. We were supposed to shack up in the Little Pinky trailer, but ended up staying one night in the Imperial Mansion and the other in the Kozy Coach. The little heaters in the trailers are definitely necessary in the winter, but I can't wait to come back and glamp in one of those teepees! El Cosmico's lobby and gift shop are just gorgeous, and you may meet a little pup named Lincoln if you hang out there long enough.
<< WHERE WE ATE >>
We were really impressed with the food scene in Marfa, especially given it is a one-light town. Our absolute favorite was the quiche at << Do Your Thing Coffee >> we woke up early on our way out just to get another taste of it. The Mediterranean eats at << Food Shark >> were pretty tasty, and the food truck set up was adorable. << The Get Go >> is a great place to pick up a snack or two. We also enjoyed a gluten free pizza for lunch at the << Pizza Foundation >> and a fancy pants dinner at << Cochineal >>.
<< WHAT WE DID >>
If you love art and shopping like me, then Marfa is the place to be. The art installations are mind blowing, including the infamous Prada Marfa backed by the folks at << Ballroom Marfa >> and the work of Donald Judd and Dan Flavin at << The Chianti Foundation >>. There are a handful of unique curated shops. We were smitten with << Mirth >> for house wares, << Freda >> for woman's accessories, and << Wrong Marfa >> for random finds. My husband Mead took a ride with Burt at << Marfa Gliders >> after I bored him with all the art tours and shopping.
My love for original art began a few years ago when I went to visit Sally King Benedict's studio on my first visit to Charleston, South Carolina. I quickly noticed that Charleston is a mecca for young, extremely talented artists like Teil Henley << formerly Teil Duncan >>.
Teil's style is so unique << somewhere between impressionism and fauvism >> and her use of color is so inviting and vibrant. She rotates between subjects, like beaches << above >> and cows, but her nudes << below >> are my absolute fave.
What has impressed me the most is how Teil has used social media to sell her amazing work. She focuses on one subject for a month or so, paints up a storm, lets all her Instagram followers know when the paintings will be posted for sale on her website, and then sells out in minutes. Talk about a brilliant business plan that makes beautiful art available to the masses at an affordable price!
She even periodically releases limited edition prints, like the beautiful palm tree print << below >> that is currently available.
Teil also gave me a little insight into her colorful world >>
<< what is inspiring you these days >>
Not only was I fortunate enough to visit Teil's sweet little studio at Redux last summer, but she came to paint live at our wedding in Houston last fall! I cannot express how special this piece of art is to me >> it captured the spirit of our wedding day perfectly. Check out some pictures from the wedding and where my cherished piece hangs in our casa << below >>.
If a plant were my soul mate >> it would be the fiddle leaf fig. I seriously cannot express my love for these plants in words. Unfortunately, my previous black thumb killed countless "fickle" leaf figs over the years << RIP >>.
After consulting with my landscaping neighbor, both my big fig in the living room << below >> and my little fig in our bedroom << above >> started to thrive! So I thought I'd share some tips that have worked for me >>
1. Do not disturb the fig >> keep the fig in its original container and drop it in a slightly bigger pot or basket that allows for drainage. Use one of << these >> if you are dropping the container into a basket to catch the extra water.
2. Find the fig a window >> figs love indirect sunlight, so prop it up right next to a window. The fig in my living room and the fig in my bedroom face opposite directions and are both thriving, so any window that gets sunlight will do.
3. Get the fig on a schedule >> this is KEY. I water both the big and small fig once a week with just enough water to wet the soil << about one cup of water for the small fig and two cups of water for the big fig >>.
4. Slo-mo with the water >> water the fig as slowly as possibly, allowing the water to seep into the soil before it reaches the edges. This will allow for water to absorb evenly.
5. Keep your eyes on the leaves >> when the water has absorbed into the soil, you should notice the leaves perk up and point upward << usually noticeable the day after watering >>. Throughout the week, the leaves will slowly fall and begin to point downward but should never be facing directly down. If the leaves are facing directly down by the end of the week >> increase the amount of water.
Happy Fiddle Leaf Figging!
When my sister told me that she was having another baby, I wanted to do something special to reveal the gender to her growing family >> including my sweet niece, Penelope June, who is just eighteen months old. I immediately thought of heading to my favorite Houston party store, Emerson Sloan, to see what I could put together. The woman behind this great little curated shop, Kim, helped me create a sweet box that was the perfect little gender reveal.
I bought just three main supplies at Emerson Sloan for the project >>
Rifle Paper Company Gift Wrap
Tissue Paper Garland
36 Inch Round Balloon >> have it blown up and tied to the Tissue Paper Garland
Other items I used >>
Empty Packing Box
Small Piece of Ribbon
Heavy Duty Mounting Tape
I wrapped the box in the Rifle Paper Company Gift Wrap. Unlike a traditional gift, I wrapped each flap separately so that the box can be opened without tearing the gift wrap.
I used the Hole Puncher to punch a hole in the middle of both inner edges of the two longer flaps.
I tied a loop in the string on the Tissue Paper Garland and attached it to the bottom of the box with Heavy Duty Mounting Tape.
I then carefully placed the Tissue Paper Garland into the box, closing the two smaller flaps first, then the two larger flaps.
I pulled the ribbon through the holes in the larger flaps.
I tied a bow with the ribbon as tightly as possible, making sure that none of the tissue was visible from the outside.
Once you untie the bow, pull out the ribbon, and open the two large flaps, the tissue paper garland is lifted up by the weight of the ballon.
My sister, brother-in-law, and niece were thrilled to find out they are having another girl! This was such a fun << and sugarless >> way to do a gender reveal! For the full effect, see the sweet video below.
If you have a party coming up or need to find a unique gift, head on over to Emerson Sloan in Rice Village. Their fun selection could spark some creativity! When I first visited, I spotted these little party hats and had a party in the park for my two pups >> all their pup friends wore the hats to celebrate!
This dish is currently my favorite to make at home for dinner. The cabbage makes a great side dish, but I often eat by itself as a main course. I usually cook by just improvising, but I actually stopped to quantify all the ingredients so I could share it with you >>
4-6 bacon slices, cut into pieces
2 shallots, sliced << you can sub a small onion and a couple garlic cloves >>
1-2 jalapeños, deseeded and julienned
1 tablespoon of butter << our fave is ghee >>
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 medium-sized green cabbage, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon of garlic salt << we live on the Trader Joe's brand >>
1/2 teaspoon of pepper
1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon of cumin
1 small package of goat cheese
1. In a dutch oven, saute bacon on medium heat until brown, scraping the browned bits off the bottom with a wooden spoon as you stir.
2. Place the bacon pieces on a paper towel to drain, and drain the bacon grease from the dutch oven.
3. Add the butter, oil, jalapeños, and shallots to the dutch oven, stirring until the jalapeños are softened, the shallots appear clear, and some of the browned bits have lifted off the bottom, usually about five minutes.
4. Add half of the cabbage to the dutch oven, stirring until the cabbage is just moistened; repeat with the other half of the cabbage.
5. Add the garlic salt, pepper, garlic powder, and cumin.
6. Continue to stir periodically until the cabbage is just tender, usually about fifteen minutes.
7. Turn the stove to medium low and continue to stir for another five minutes, until the cabbage is al dente.
8. Plate the cabbage, adding the bacon pieces and sprinkling goat cheese over the top.
I recommend using a dutch oven to really develop the flavors, but you can totally use a large frying pan or pot as well. This recipe is really versatile >> you can use all types of greens and cheeses to make it your own!
This year has brought so many exciting events and so much happiness. Looking back, I'm so grateful for so many memories made >> from those at our beautiful, rainy wedding to those every day moments in our extraordinary, ordinary lives. I'm also thankful to have finally started this blog, and I'm looking forward to sharing a lot more next year.
So here's to the good that found you and the great that awaits! Happy New Year!
Convenience is a big factor in gift giving for me these days >> all hail the interwebs. I have found a few mom and pop websites, so to speak, that offer thoughtful & beautiful gifts delivered directly to your loved ones' front doors >>
<< GREETABL >>
This little box of happiness is referred to as a Greetabl >> a great little "thinking of you" gift. You simply choose a box design << $8,00 each >> choose a little gift that goes inside << anything from $2.00 confetti to a $25.00 silk sleep mask >> and customize the inside of the box with a message and three pictures that can be detached.
Isn't that the coolest box you've ever seen? A family member was gifted a Greetabl for Christmas and literally teared up after opening it! Happiness Delivered!
<< BOX FOX >>
The Box Fox is a more substantial gift that you can pick out by occasion or customize yourself. You simply pick out a predesigned box or customized contents >> the Box Fox peeps then package the items up pretty, handwrite your message for you, and get it shipped out to your loved one. The Box Fox team has partnered with some great brands including my favorite << Rifle Paper Company >>.
How cute is this custom hostess gift box with that little succulent? I've sent a Box Fox to a girlfriend for her birthday and she was just thrilled.
<< FARM GIRL FLOWERS >>
Do you hate sending the typical flowers you order on the interwebs? That makes two of us >> the flowers either look too generic in the photos or the flowers received are completely different than the flowers pictured. The solution >> Farmgirl Flowers. The peeps over at Farmgirl Flowers source beautiful, all US grown flowers from local farmers, arrange the daily pick in a gorgeous bouquet wrapped in burlap, and then send them on their merry way >> they even offer nationwide shipping!
The prices range from $38.00 for the Fun-Sized Burlap Wrapped Bouquet << described as "loved-the-first-date-but-don't-want-to-scare-you-off-size" >> to the $120.00 (RED) Bouquet << a portion of the proceeds of this one go to support (RED) >>. Farmgirl Flowers also offers fun gift baskets like the << DWAYNE + GARTH >> and a sweet little << GEO TERRARIUM >>.
This has been my go-to chocolate chip cookie recipe for years now >> the secret is to NOT substitute any of the ingredients. I have tried the recipe with gluten free flour, natural cane sugar, and ghee butter, and although they were still good, they were not great. So go ahead and treat yo self or your loved ones with a batch of these gooey treats. You will not regret it.
<< THE BEST CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES >>
3/4 cup << a stick and a half >> of unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup of brown sugar
1/4 cup of granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract << organic Madagascar vanilla extract is my fave >>
2 teaspoons of cornstarch
1 teaspoons of baking soda
1/2 teaspoon of salt
2 cups of all purpose flour
1 cup of good quality chocolate chips or chunks
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream together butter and sugars until fluffy and light in color. << no worries if you do not have a mixer, just use a large spoon and a little elbow grease to get the job done >>
3. Add egg and vanilla and blend into mixture.
4. Mix in flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt.
5. Stir in chocolate chips/chunks.
6. Place parchment paper on a baking sheet. << do not skip on the parchment paper, it works wonders >>
7. Using a standard-sized cookie scoop or tablespoon, roll dough into loose balls and drop onto parchment paper, leaving enough room for the cookies to spread << if you follow the recipe exactly, you should get roughly a little over a dozen cookies depending on size >>
8. Set timer and bake for exactly ten minutes, no more, no less. << the tops will not be brown, but you should see some color on the bottoms >>
9. Remove from baking sheet and let cool completely. << carefully transfer to a wire rack if you have one >>
10. Try not to devour them all.
If you are looking for an easy DIY Christmas gift on the cheap, stuff about six of these cookies into one of << these >>, tie on a handwritten tag with some twine and greenery << rosemary is festive >>, and voila!
Happy Cookie Baking!
Somewhere along the way I became OBSESSED with vintage indigo and hmong textiles. Every piece is so unique and intricate. It's like you can see the history in all the little details.
While scowering the interwebs to find a vendor selling these beauties, I came across the Etsy shop << Boho Pillow >> and the rest is history.
Monica is the beauty behind the most beautifully constructed pillows made with all types of ethnic fabrics, including my beloved faves. Her Etsy shop << Boho Pillow >> is always stocked, and her << Instagram >> account is an inspiration mecca. She is not afraid of a custom order, and she has even helped me choose fabrics to go with her goods!
She also graciously gave me a little insight into her world >>
<< what is inspiring you these days >>
Currently, I'm DIYing some textile covered Christmas ornaments << like this beauty >> and I cannot get enough of them. I think I may have ordered all the scraps that Monica had! DIY post to come in the near future >>
For all you peeps out there that want to get your hands on some of these amazing head resters, Monica has offered 15% off your order through Friday, December 18, 2015 with the following coupon code >> BOHO15.
Thanks for being so rad Monica!
I have attempted to start a blog on a few occasions << this attempt included >>, and it just did not quite feel right. All of my attempts have been lacking either in aesthetics or purpose. So with the help of my friend Liz << her blog here >>, I was able to create this visually pleasing space to share my creative side with my loved ones and all you peeps on the interwebs.
I am so excited about sharing my thoughts, my projects, and all of my favorite things with y'all! So here I go, for real this time.