Monday, December 15, 2014

Healthy(ish), Vegan Christmas Cookie Recipes | Sugar and Gingerbread

We had some of our favourite friends over last week for a Christmas baking night, and I knew for things to go smoothly/quickly, I should have the dough pre-made. So, the day before I scoured the internet for the best recipes I could find - and because they turned out SO good, I just had to share them with you. And, sneakily, they don't contain any dairy or eggs, but you would NEVER know. My 3 baking partners as well as taste testers at work were completely fooled! And even if you don't need to avoid dairy/eggs, it sure doesn't hurt to have a slightly healthier holiday cookie recipe up your sleeve (because then you can eat more) and it also means you can eat dough as you go along, which, let's be honest, is really the best part (and the whole point of baking, right!).

This is totally how our cookies looked (not).

Okay, the sugar cookies aren't really healthy, but they were tasty and vegan, so tomato/tomahto. That said, these are probably the BEST sugar cookies I've ever tasted so I don't know why you would make another recipe ever again now that you have this one.  Not to mention super easy ingredients unlike other recipes I found that called for cornstarch (which I was out of) and cream of tartar (which I don't have). Head here for the delish recipe.

This gingerbread recipe, on the other hand, uses some much more healthful ingredients which makes indulging a lot less sinful. I used coconut oil, coconut sugar and blackstrap molasses (all organic) for an authentic and delicious (and very dark) gingerbread recipe.

And, camera is already packed so no photos of our creations (which were actually really nice less a few very naughty cookies in non-Christmas shapes).

What is your go-to holiday cookie recipe?

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Designing a Home | Finding a Style

Just 16 more days until we are into the new house. Excited doesn't even begin to capture how we're feeling. But, as the move in date creeps up, as does my self-imposed timeline to figure out how to decorate this blank canvas.

This layout below is very similar to ours (just cut the island in half, take out the coffered ceilings and the beefy trim.. oh and almost everything else! But you get the idea).

What I love about this photo is that it's not pigeon holed into a style. The cabinets and mouldings and door style are all very traditional, yet the furniture is modern and simple. It's the definition of transitional design, and it's what I'm hoping to achieve with our home.

Although the style below is pretty far from my own, I'm including it as a reminder for me to inject some colour in my space. I usually gravitate towards neutrals but look how happy this space is! I just love it.

The opposite of colourful, the style below blends so many textures that it conveys warmth in a different way (let's be honest, I probably won't inject much colour and will end up with more neutrals no matter how hard I try).

 I've always loved a little art deco or hollywood regency glam. It doesn't need to be done throughout nor overwhelming to make an impact.

But, I also love the modern, clean line of this condo design. Do you see what I'm going here?

And this space is just to.die.for.

Okay, if you're still with me you've probably acknowledged that I have design ADD and I love about a million different things and styles. Hence why we are 16 days out and I'm still agonizing how to tackle the house. SO much pressure on myself to make it perfect. Right now, I'm just hoping to get our stuff in there and take it one day at a time. It's hard to know what to do with a space unless you'd lived in it, right?

If you have, how did you figure out your "style"? HELP!

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Christmas Card Season

Do you have your Christmas cards yet? Or (like me) have you run out of Christmas cards as your list adds up and up with recipients you might have forgotten about? It's not too late - in fact, it might be the best time because holiday cards are majorly on sale. Score some custom holiday cards with guaranteed shipping at 40% from Tiny Prints.

I nearly opted out of doing holiday cards this year until the amazing people at Tiny Prints slapped some sense into me and brought me back to the real world, where I absolutely cannot miss the experience of sending Christmas cards. And when Tiny Prints gives you cards, you don't say no!

Because of the big move over the holidays to the new house, we aren't decorating and we aren't gift giving, so it's not feeling very festive around here. Sending Christmas cards was the least I could do to get in the holiday spirit!

No special photoshoots this year, so we opted for a non-photo custom card in a luscious pale mint and gold foil effect. The matching address labels were also a welcome opportunity to share our upcoming new address with a "New Year, New Address" message,

If we had done a photocard, I absolutely love these options below.

What are you doing for holiday cards this year? When do you send them out?

*Thanks to Tiny Prints for providing me with my holiday cards this year. Despite being gifted by Tiny Prints, I do completely love their cards, and all opinions expressed are my own.