Wednesday, 30 November 2011

noël et neige

Look at me all fancy and French with that post title! wink Most of you probably know that Noël is the French word for Christmas; neige would be the French word for snow.

Earlier this year decorative letters seemed to be the hot item in the world of home decor. I'll not go so far as to call them tacky but – no offence to those of you who fell for them – I'd go insane having those on my shelf or mantelpiece or anywhere in my home for longer than a day. I don't know, I guess I'm not much of a the-latest-fad kind of girl when it comes to home decor. Usually, when the interior magazines try to tell me that I have to have something, be it letters or whatever, you'll see me running away very fast. However, I think I would be okay with something like Noël or neige in December because I would know that it was temporary; by January the letters would be in a box.

Now I think it's time for latte and biscotti. Have a wonderful Wednesday!

photo credit:
top right: Janis Nicolay for Country Living
bottom-left: Marie Claire idées
bottom-right: Marie Claire idées

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

send your pet to paris

This one is for all you pet owners and lovers out there. Currently I don't have a pet but one day I'm getting a dachshund (yes I am!) and then I'm contacting artist Carol Gillot of Paris Breakfast to get one of her beautiful 'Pet Portraits in Paris' watercolour paintings. All you have to do is send her a photo of your pet and she does the rest. I fell in love with her artwork instantly.

I think I would ask her for a painting of my future dachshund in front of 31 Rue Cambon. Yes, that would be the location of Chanel. And I think I would ask for Ladurée too and the Eiffel Tower and and and... How on earth does one decide? Got any favourite Paris location for that kind of painting?
Now I need a latte before I start reading your inspiring blogs. Have a wonderful Tuesday!

PS. Thank you for your kind comments yesterday. I'm keeping my daughter home one more day but she's feeling better. The pancakes and hot chocolate did wonders.

photo credit:
Carol Gillot of Paris Breakfast
published with her written permission

Monday, 28 November 2011

monday mood

It was my plan to go into the city centre to do some Christmas shopping but my younger daughter is home with a cold, which gives me the perfect excuse to relax at home and read.

I was already dreaming of latte at a café so I think I need to make pancakes and hot chocolate and set the table nicely. I think we deserve that.

Have a wonderful Monday!

photo credit:

Sunday, 27 November 2011

first sunday of advent

Today has been a good day. I sent hubby and one daughter to the Nightingale Park to collect cones and a spruce branch for our Advent wreath. I decided to go for silver candles this year and bought some fake snowflakes too. Well, before I made the wreath I had to freeze the cones because they had company – unwelcome company. I want nothing crawling in my wreath! Later I made apple cake with cinnamon and we enjoyed it with whipped cream.

This all sounds rather perfect, right? Don't worry, the two youngest children took care of the noise department and entertained us with some fabulous arguments but now everything is quiet, oh so quiet.

For the rest of the day I've decided to relax on my chaise lounge with my beautiful copy of Bleak House by Charles Dickens and do absolutely nothing. I hope you're enjoying a wonderful Sunday!

photo credit: Lisa Hjalt

Saturday, 26 November 2011

a little dior couture

That would be model Viviane Orth in a dress from the Dior Haute Couture Autumn/Winter 2009 Collection. The print applies to me most of the time. I bet it applies to some of you too. wink

Got any plans on this Saturday? I need to buy candles for my Advent wreath because tomorrow is the First Sunday of Advent. Last year I told you the story about what hubby did to the first wreath I bought. You may want to read it and have a good laugh. Enjoy your day!

photo credit:
Gomillion & Leupold for L'Officiel Brazil October 2009
Laurel Denise on Etsy

Friday, 25 November 2011

oak floor heaven

The oak floor is not the only beautiful element in this home but I can't take my eyes of it. Mikel Irastorza is the designer behind all this and I like how he combines white and wood and manages to create that elegant and homey atmosphere. I love the harmony of the hallway, that gorgeous armchair and the Chinese stool and print. There is something so welcoming about this place.

This post is an opportunity to praise a fellow blogger. I found the photo in the middle on Chantal's beautiful blog Meta Musings. Chantal is a pro, she's an interior designer and her posts always leave me inspired. I highly recommend adding her to your daily blog routine.

It's Friday which in my home means home-made pizza for dinner and red wine. I still haven't decided about the turkey tomorrow. I'm wondering if my craving for turkey is in fact my craving for that side dish I've already mentioned, the one with the sweet potatoes and pecans, hmm.

Have a fabulous Friday!

photo credit:

Thursday, 24 November 2011

happy thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving, all my American friends and other friends who celebrate this day, wherever you are in the world!

By this time of the year I've had enough of pumpkin decorations but I love yellow and orange colours at Thanksgiving. The above organic table setting is for a wedding styled by Danielle of Studio Fleurette, but who says it can't work at Thanksgiving as well. The colours are perfect and I love the billy buttons, birch branches and orchids together.

It was on our agenda to celebrate Thanksgiving this year, just to be able to enjoy turkey before Christmas. But last weekend we had our surprise Danish feast so I was wondering that maybe it's too much to have another one this weekend. Well, I haven't quite decided, let's see.

Have a beautiful day dear blog friends and other followers and thanks for the visits and wonderful comments!

photo credit:
Kristina Lynn for Studio Fleurette

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

maastricht sneak peek

I had a wonderful time with my friends in Maastricht yesterday, but I have to admit that I hardly took any photos so let's call this a sneak peek until I return and take some more. Yes, I'm definitely going back. Maastricht is a beautiful city and the Christmas decorations made it even more beautiful. The city centre has many narrow cobblestone streets and strolling around really lifts the spirit.

I think I can honestly say that in the heart of the city I stepped into the most beautiful bookshop I've ever seen. It's an ancient church that has been turned into a bookshop. Words can't really describe it but I found this page on the web with the history and photos.

Maastricht is probably not the right city for sushi lovers. We only found take-out places and the one nice place we found was closed. So no sushi yesterday. But we found this wonderful restaurant called 'T KLÄÖSKE and we could have sat there all day but we had to go back home. (It's to the left on the last photo.)

The journey back wasn't all that great because I had missed the last train that goes straight to Brussels, which is a nice looking train. So I had to take this old and ugly train to Liège and wait there for a train to Brussels and wait again for a train to Antwerp. And when I finally arrived in Antwerp my bicycle had been stolen. I like to believe that my bicycle is protected by law of karma so whoever stole it may come to regret it!

Have a wonderful Wednesday!

photo credit: Lisa Hjalt

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

au revoir mes amis

I am leaving you for a day. I'm taking the train to Maastricht via Brussels to meet old school friends. We are three Icelanders living in Belgium, Germany and Luxembourg, so we thought it fitting to meet on a neutral ground, in Holland. Sushi and white wine is on the menu and a whole lot of catching up and laughing. I've never been to Maastricht (click for map with streetview) so I'm looking forward to seeing this beautiful city.

I'm leaving you with a cosy Christmassy photo to help you get into the Christmas groove. Enjoy your day!

photo credit:

Monday, 21 November 2011

k&a: brussels sprouts w/chestnuts, bacon...

See the reindeer in the photo? That's the one I got at the Danish Christmas Fair and I love it. Last year I searched and searched for a deer but didn't find any so finally I have one to put on my Christmas table.

Speaking of Christmas. I just posted a recipe of Brussels sprouts with chestnuts, bacon and parsley on kitchen & aroma. It's a recipe I adapted from the one and only Nigella Lawson. I've been making this side dish for years now and we all love it (of course it was part of our feast last Saturday). I saw Nigella making it on TV when she was preparing a turkey meal and I was looking for ideas for side dishes with our turkey. Now we would never even serve turkey without this. It's so common that people, especially children, don't like Brussels sprouts but mine love it. I think the reason is this side dish; it makes them taste so so so much better. Brussels sprouts are very healthy but I know the bacon isn't, and it's probably the only time you'll find bacon in a recipe on kitchen & aroma.

There is another side dish I always make with the turkey that has sweet potatoes and pecans (it's delicious!). I first tasted that one at Thanksgiving in Canada in 2009. I think I'll also share that recipe before Christmas.

I hope you are enjoying a wonderful Monday!

photo credit: Lisa Hjalt

Sunday, 20 November 2011

danish christmas fair

Yesterday we went to the Danish Christmas Fair in Waterloo, which I mentioned in my post. The Fair was held at the Scandinavian School of Brussels, which is located in a beautiful green area called Domaine d'Argenteuil. The weather couldn't have been better so it was nice to stay outside, enjoy food, Tuborg Christmas brew and mulled wine. Inside the gymnasium they were selling Danish products: food, candy, Christmas decorations, wreaths and all kinds of things. It was simply wonderful to be there, hear the familiar Danish language and experience another culture for just a day. We'll definitely go back next year.

At the Fair I found the reindeer I've been looking for to put on my Christmas table – yay! We also bought everything to cook a proper dinner, so yesterday we had a feast at home and it kind of felt like Christmas when we sat down at the dining table.

Have a beautiful Sunday!

photo credit: Lisa Hjalt

Saturday, 19 November 2011

scandinavian crush

I have a big Scandinavian crush. I saw that house online last Monday and I've been thinking about it all week. It was simply love at first sight. Then I read the article (in Danish, see link below), which says the exact same story about the current owners. The house is located in Gentofte, which is a town north of Copenhagen. It was built in 1923 for the painter Ernst Zeuthen (1880-1938), and has of course been renovated. On the outside it is a blend of English cottage and Tuscan style.

I can't stand clutter, therefore I love clutter free houses like this one. I'm so picturing myself with a cup of hot chocolate close to that fireplace, or reading a book or browsing through magazines in this beautiful room to the right. Are you with me? 

Today we are thinking about attending a Danish Christmas Fair. The Danish Church in Brussels organizes it but the fair itself is held at the Scandinavian School of Brussels, in Waterloo. I think it could be really fun to go and breathe in some Danish Christmas spirit and culture. We might even bump into some Icelanders there.

What are you guys up to on this Saturday?

photo credit: Mikkel Adsbøl for