Canada Day Decor Made Easy

A friend of mine has thrown the most amazing Canada Day party every year. She will be downsizing from her family home to an amazing condo in Bridgeland Hills by Gablecraft Homes. She was concerned about how to achieve the same great party decor in a more compact space and I was excited to show her that it's not difficult at all.
I decided to pull together some fun and easy decor ideas in a red and white scheme. For the set up on Global I used a piece of wrapping paper as the runner. For the centrepiece I used a glass jar with some white candles and a layer of red gum balls on the bottom.
Making a signature cocktail for events makes the drink feel ceremonious. In a compact space it's easy to have a self serve drink station because a drink dispenser has a smaller footprint. There's unlimited berry punch recipes on Pinterest. I'd probably put in some frozen raspberries, strawberries and maybe even mint leaves. 
I'm a big fan of anything mini and thought that strawberry cheesecake served in mason jars would have a summer feel, and besides they're delicious. Plus you can make these the day ahead, refrigerate, and take them out right before the party- this will cut down considerably on prep time the day of the party. 

So there you have it. Wishing you the best Canada Day! 
xo Erica


Yay! Pottery Barn Kids Comes to Calgary

I couldn't be more excited about the Pottery Barn Kids store opening here in Calgary's Chinook Mall. They have the best stuff. I was quite taken with the summer collection and it prompted a mini yard makeover. I partnered with them and was inspired to create a cottage in the city; right in my own backyard, with the fun items I found. I love finding things that will create a great experience but also are functional and aesthetically pleasing on an ongoing basis. These items are just that.
Fridays here are early dismissal days- last Friday afternoon I hosted a fun lunch for all of my little one's friends. They had the best time.
The lemonade stand was a huge hit. Little people love serving themselves drinks. 
It was great that none of these melamine dishes or glasses are breakable and the forks and spoons are the perfect size for little mouths. Practical and yet still pleasing to me as the adult.
Don't forget to pick something up for a rainy day. These cute dominos were the perfect solution. I've been amazed at the hours of entertainment they provided my boys on a gloomy afternoon.
The croquet set was fun for everyone too. It brought back memories of playing with my grandparents.
Be sure to hit the store opening on Friday (details below)
xo Erica

Store Location:
Pottery Barn Kids
Chinook Centre

Beside Joey's Entrance
6455 Macleod Trail SW
Calgary, Alberta T2H 0K8

Mon-Fri: 9:30 AM-9:00 PM
Sat: 9:30 AM-9:00 PM
Sun and Holiday: 11:00 AM-7:00 PM

Grand Opening Details:

The first 250 customers to visit will receive a free giveaway and will have a chance to win one of four Pottery Barn Kids gift cards valued at $250 CAD. 

  • Friday, May 29, 2015 Pottery Barn Kids: Children’s face painter, 1:00pm – 3:00pm.             Plus, appearance from Clancy the bear with mini-plush Clancy and balloon giveaway. While supplies last; giveaway begins at 9:30am 
  • Saturday, May 30, 2015 Pottery Barn Kids: Children’s music performance, 11:30am – 12:00pm and 1:30pm 2:00pm. 
  • Sunday, May 31, 2015 Pottery Barn Kids: Appearance from Clancy the bear 


Around Here | Kitchen Update

It seems every year I get cabin fever once spring arrives. I crave change and always feel like I want to tear apart my whole home.
That's not always practical, so I decided to come up with a few very simple and relatively inexpensive ways to create big impact, with little effort, and give my kitchen a whole new look and feel.
Last year I incorporated copper and rose gold in my exterior and patio decor. I really liked the way it all came together so I decided to head in the same direction inside.
I invested in a new knife set, two candles, new measuring cups and spoons and a few other details. It really was that simple... swap out the old chipped knife block, put a candle on the counter and in the marble condiment tray I have, then stand back and appreciate. It couldn't be easier.
Sometimes a simple switch up is all it takes to make everything feel new. I'm pretty happy. 

Happy Friday, and a very Happy Memorial Day weekend to my American friends! xo


Thursday Things | Nordstrom Sale!

It's been awhile since I've done a 'things I dig Thursday'. Today I'm sharing my summer picks from the Nordstrom half yearly sale. I'm not going to lie- I secretly look forward to this sale and stalk my upcoming purchases for a few weeks in advance. Everything always seems to arrive right on time for summer weather. What summer buy are you looking forward to most?

3. Coconut Frosting Wash (smells good enough to eat)


The Art of Brunching | The Juice Bar

When hosting brunch it's fun to set up a juice/mimosa bar. In keeping things simple it means that guests can serve themselves and customize their drink to their own taste. I strive to serve family and friends the best quality ingredients. For this reason I'm really excited about Simply Orange and their newest product, Simply Orange with Coconut Water. It's 80 calories per serving, is never sweetened, has no preservatives, artificial flavours or colours.
To create juice infusions I muddled fresh raspberries in a mortar and pestle; put them in the bottom of my serving jug and poured the Simply Orange with Coconut Water on top. I also created a blend infused with grapefruit and rosemary. The possibilities are only limited by your imagination.

PS- For more brunching tips and to share your own brunch ideas tweet @Simply_Orange #brunchoff 


The Art of Brunching | Simple Menu Ideas

I love having get togethers with family and friends. However, sometimes it's hectic to arrange a formal sit down dinner, so I often turn to hosting brunch. It's a casual and relaxed way to entertain and getting organized is far less complicated.
Mini foods became a novelty some time ago. They're easy to make ahead of time at home, and almost everything you can imagine can be purchased pre-made at your local grocery store. Serving bite sized items means that guests can graze, walk around, and socialize. This also means less clean up for you!
One of my favourite things to serve guests is mini yogurt parfaits. I use wide mouth 250 ml/8 oz mason jars. You can fill the bottom half of the mason jars with vanilla greek yogurt the night before. Cap, refrigerate, and set them up assembly line style in the morning. I put out bowls of granola, fresh berries, honey, dried nuts, etc… for guests to top their yogurt as they please.
Marble Pastry Board (here) and (here
250 ml / 8 oz Wide Mouth Mason jar (here) and (here)

I'm thinking this is what I'll do for Mother's Day Brunch. What are your favourite brunch foods?

PS- For more brunching tips and to share your own brunch ideas tweet @Simply_Orange #brunchoff 


The Art of Brunching | Decor

One of the things I look forward to when hosting brunch is the set up. I love having a reason to buy flowers and creating coordinated serving vignettes. I came up with a way to make pretty, yet budget friendly, floral arrangements. In keeping things fresh for spring, I incorporated lemons for their scent and a pop of yellow.
I had three 2qt mason or cracker jars on hand. I cut lemon slices fairly thick and stood them up against the inside walls of the jar. I then placed an ikea juice glass (which fits perfectly) in the center and filled it with water. This will hold the lemons in place and provide water for the cut flowers. I picked up some simple florist bunches from the grocery store and cut the stems all to the same length leaving the center stem slightly longer to stand above the rest.

I love how they turned out. You could also change this arrangement, based on season by using cranberries in the fall or watermelon slices in the summer. Happy Brunching!
PS- For more brunching tips and to share your own brunch ideas tweet @Simply_Orange #brunchoff 
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