Year: 2010

boutique hotel pick – badrutts palace – st. moritz switzerland

During the Winter months and in light of staying true to the season, I often search for and recommend hotels situated in the most romantic ski destinations, around the globe. I find that every season in travel should be embraced for what it is and considered a place to visit, even for once in a lifetime. A person doesn’t have to appreciate skiing to consider vacationing in or around a ski resort, they simply have to love the snow and the ambiance of area. So for that reason, I have come across yet another boutique hotel which I recommend, Badrutt’s Palace, which is  set in the beautiful St. Moritz area of Switzerland. One thing  you should keep in mind while contemplating such a destination, plan ahead and book early. For more about St. Moritz as a ski destination or a romantic getaway, please click here. Have a great weekend and remember to breath while frantically shopping for the holidays.

new years eve and black-tie event dresses and gowns

I know I have stated before, if all else fails, consider the color black in fashion. Believe me a woman over 40 can seldom  go wrong with the choice of color, because no matter how self-conscious she may feel about her figure, black has a way of smoothing out the edges. However, choosing age appropriate black dresses or gowns is  very important for the woman over 40 because, selecting the wrong cut, length or style , can surely be the most damaging. Since choosing the dress or gown is a hit or miss in some or most cases, I have included one of my favorite designer’s website here to help guide the process. I have also included some of my favorite selections (below) from the site to consider or duplicate (depending on one’s budget)  for that special soiree. Enjoy and let me know what is your favorite gown from the selection.

holiday table decor and labels

Of course every holiday buffet table should have some sort of centerpiece or decor neatly placed either in the center of a table or between the different dishes. In addition, it is always nice to add a stand alone label for each dish to make it easier for your guests, just in case they have allergies or food restrictions. It isn’t difficult to make the labels, you can actually purchase them at any craft or art supply store and just handwrite the name of the dish and place it by the platter. Again, this isn’t an issue if you plan to cater, they handle all of that if you ask them. In organizing a buffet table theme for a friend of mine, we opted to use the following methods  as our inspiration for table decor and dish labels. DISH LABELS TABLE DECOR   Please feel free to drop me a line if you should have suggestions or recommendations. I would love to hear from you.

healthy holiday appetizers

While hosting a party at your home for the holidays, it is always best to include some items you have prepared yourself, unless of course the entire set up is catered, then it’s not an issue. Guests love circling a buffet table, while trying to figure out what each dish is made of or made by.  So, in light of playing host, I have included two appetizers which I found here, that I think are fun to make and will surely be a hit at  your gourmet buffet table set up during this holiday season. 1. BRIE TOASTS WITH SPICED SUNDRIED TOMATO COMPOTE pictured below – click here for the recipe 2. LE GRUYÈRE CHEESE PLATE WITH FIGS Pictured below – click here for the recipe

a few of my favorite holiday decor

I love the fact holiday decor or decorating ideas  have come a long way throughout the years. The suggestion to use  shades of blue and silver or whites throughout the home is most amazing and in a way  esthetically pleasing to the eyes. Seriously, in my opinion, there is nothing better than to come home from the craziness of the outdoors to a lighthearted and airy Christmas decor throughout a home. So, although I may be too late in the month for this entry, nonetheless, I have included a few photos of my favorite holiday decor, which I plan to incorporate throughout my temporary housing  this year 🙂 . Let me know what you think?

a nostalgic holiday experience in san francisco

I am a sucker for nostalgia and usually get very sentimental during the holiday season, like (I am sure) most people do. I miss the past and long for when life seemed a little simpler and less demanding, when families where closer and holidays really meant something and  Christmas shopping was truly a creative and rewarding experience rather than a search for the trends and holiday sales. In light of this topic, I can honestly say that although I cannot change what has happened to family and tradition, I can suggest  finding a piece of a reminder from the past and escaping there, if only for a day. I personally do this by taking a day  in San Francisco to go downtown and walk only through historic ( iconic)  retail stores  encompassing Union Square,  so that I can detox myself from the demands of modern-day shopping frenzy through  a “Westfield Mall”. I walk through Macy (no 4) and then cross the street over to Neiman Marcus (no 6) . Afterwards,  I cut through Union Square …

breakfast nooks – a san francisco gem

Funny shift in article you might say, considering my thought pattern during the holiday season. But I just had to include a piece on breakfast nooks, because in my opinion, they play a major role during the holiday season. And also because I cannot go very long without discussing interiors and architecture. In San Francisco, almost every home built before 1970, has some sort of a built in breakfast nook. I am not talking about an open space where you can place a table with four chairs (like most modern homes or kitchens have) but a small circular or a corner section in the kitchen area designed specifically for the built in table and seating. I just love them!!! One reason I feel the breakfast nook plays a big role during the holiday season, is that, although it is a small area, most family members spend quiet a lot of time planning and discussing their holiday events to host or attend.  This wonderful little corner is also used for wrapping gifts and filing out Christmas …

christmas gift idea for her – romantic getaway

I can honestly say, by the time a woman reaches  her 40s, it becomes  less and less  important to get a gift for her kitchen as it is to get a gift for herself. Sometimes, some women  are even willing to forgo a pair of diamond earrings for a week’s  getaway from their daily lives. So, just in case you have exhausted all your “gift idea” resources, consider surprising her with a romantic getaway (within your budget) to most anywhere in the world. As you know or may not, off-season travel (depending on destination) is  more likely affordable than during the high season . However, planning a vacation “gift” within a budget is often times  very challenging.  Calling a travel agent to arrange such a trip is priceless. 🙂 The reason I suggest working with a travel agent to plan a “gift” vacation is so that you can actually put the plan on hold with a small deposit, while you surprise your significant other with a gift certificate and deal with the reaction. Should she …

holiday 2010 gift wrap ideas

I do admire a beautifully designed  gift wrap paper, as much as I appreciate  a well  crafted greeting card. I can honestly say, I will  spend some days, the entire day, shopping for them at specialty stores, craft stores, art supply stores  and paper design centers most anywhere in the world. I admit I am an avid collector of fine gift wrap paper and as a result have containers full of unusual, vintage and extraordinary  paper in hopes of one day mustering up enough courage to start my own production of them. But in the meantime, I want to share some of my favorite photos of holiday gift wrap papers and let you know that, from what I have seen,  this year  there seems to be an abundance of creatively  designed gift wrap papers to choose from. Just a few places that come to mind for now: Papyrus Card Store, Pottery Barn, Pier 1 Imports, Cost Plus, Target, Crate and Barrel and all Fine Paper Stationary Stores.  So, if you happen to stumble upon a …

holiday 2010 gift ideas for her – designer scarf

Part of making an impression  while giving a woman a holiday gift is the box it comes in. Although gifts from some department stores are expected and pretty predictable from a woman’s point of view, there is nothing like catching her off guard with a box  from a store she would never consider shopping at, much less buy from, especially for herself. One sure way to show the care taken in selecting  a well thought out gift,  (outside of jewelry)  is giving her a designer scarf. Most women tend to buy the most practical and durable  scarf for themselves while they run about town handling business.,  but they will surely appreciate a more glamorous one while on a date night or a  special occasion. So, gentlemen and ladies alike, consider some suggestions I have included below when shopping for a scarf and remember, where you purchase the designer scarf is as important as choosing just  the right one.