I’m sitting at my desk and staring out the window — looking at the blanket of snow covering our yard — and the idea of springtime seems quite distant. My friends at Christmas Tree Shops andThat! invited me into their stores last week to preview all of the festive new items for spring and Easter, and it got me so excited for that snow to melt, for the flowers to bloom and to celebrate in the season ahead! read more

I’ve got an easy little hack to make a double-duty Valentine’s Day treat for all of your sweethearts! Since we’ll likely all be spending Valentine’s Day hunkered down together, I took my favorite boxed brownie mix (Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate Brownies, omg) and made a kid friendly batch to celebrate with Jane, and a grown-up version to serve for a special “date-night” with my husband.
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When I think about all that has changed over the past year, I admittedly think there are a few things that have worked out for the better. One of the perks: curbside pick-up and local delivery have been game changers. Any mom of a toddler knows the exhausting struggle of getting a kid in and out of the car seat for a quick errand – the in and out of the car can take longer than the errand itself! Of course, there is lots I miss too, big gatherings and entertaining family and friends are at the top of that list. read more

New Year’s has always been a big holiday at our house. I have always loved the fresh start, clean-slate feelings that the new year brings, and we always host a big party to celebrate. Over the years the party has evolved – from a big, boozy, countdown bash on New Year’s Eve to an open-house style, kid-friendly New Year’s Day brunch. This year we won’t have our big party in person (but I’m trying to go virtual with a zoom countdown with friends!), but I still plan to give the holiday a festive treatment at home – a small but mighty ringing in of the new year. Especially since on a recent trip to my favorite Christmas Tree Shops andThat! I found a sparkly selection of disco balls that gave me some major New Year’s inspiration for a festive bar cart! read more

What’s your holiday decoration timeline policy? I usually wait until after Thanksgiving to start *really* decorating, but this year I’m feeling a yearn for festiveness and have started to replace my Halloween pumpkins with a few items that hint at the holiday season ahead. The first things I always bring out for the holidays is my collection of bottle brush trees, and at a recent trip to my favorite Christmas Tree Shops andThat! I found tons of new sizes and styles that sparked some holiday décor inspiration! read more

I love to play around with different ideas for decorating a holiday table, it’s one of my favorite ways to get inspired for the season ahead! My friends at Christmas Tree Shops andThat! asked me to pull together a fresh look for the turkey day table, and I hopped right to the challenge! My approach to a table design is to find an inspiration piece and build around it – sometimes that means filling my shopping cart up with tons of affordable and stylish items and then narrowing down what works together. That’s something that I love about visiting Christmas Tree Shops andThat! – it’s a bit like a treasure hunt. read more

I was reminiscing recently about how much I missed going to a bar and having a draft pumpkin beer poured with that delicious cinnamon sugar rim. It’s a taste of fall that I enjoy for a few short weeks every year. I took an informal poll of my instagram followers, calling for everyone to share with me their favorite fall pumpkin beers. A few people felt strongly that pumpkin beer does not even qualify as real beer and several others sent passionate votes for the classic Shipyard Pumpkin or specialty pumpkin varieties from breweries across the US. I decided to tally up the votes and do a taste test of the top recommendations with some friends outside on a warm fall day for the purpose of blog post research! I’m sharing our very scientific findings in this best of fall pumpkin beers and ciders review:  read more

Around this time of year, I start collecting inspiration for all of my fall projects. I realized after the last few months of staying closer to home just how much I missed heading into a store to gather ideas for the seasonal themes and hues I use in my photos and content. So when my friends at Christmas Tree Shops andThat! invited me to see all that’s new for fall I was excited to take some time to browse and hunt for fresh ideas that would inspire my seasonal palette.
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It’s fair to say that Easter celebrations are going to look quite a bit different this year as we’re hunkered down at home. While I’m sad we won’t be with our larger family for a traditional gathering, I’m putting on my thinking cap and figuring out how we can still make it a special day for just the three of us. I’ve got a few little surprises from the Easter Bunny tucked away for Jane’s basket and am hoping the weather is in our favor for a mini egg hunt in the back yard.  One tradition that was always my favorite as a kid was having a big Easter brunch. It was such a fond memory from my childhood that I dedicated a whole chapter to it in my cookbook, New England Invite. I thought I’d share a few of my favorite ideas from the Easter brunch chapter that would be easy to recreate at home on a smaller scale for this year’s celebrations. read more

I’m not exactly sure what Easter celebrations are going to look like in a few weeks, but I started to work on some table ideas before we hunkered down and felt like these cheery images were worth sharing even if the holiday ends up looking quite different this year. We could all use some happy tables full of velvet ribbons and champagne coupes filled with jelly beans, right?  read more