Thursday, November 29, 2012

Not-So-Sleeping Beauty

To sleep perchance to dream...

Oh to sleep at all!

I have been fortunate in life not to have sleeping disorders,  But as I age, I am finding it harder and harder to sleep.  The stress of work this fall, coupled with my dad's death, has resulted in me not sleeping almost at all.

So, dear friends -  I am looking for help!

What folks remedies/methods do you use to stay asleep?  I go to sleep fine, I just wake up and then am wide awake for the rest of the night!

All help gratefully appreciated!!!!!!!

I want to look like this again soon:

On a completely different and more shallow note, I thought I would show you something in my wardrobe that you have not seen before and which I truly love: my Aquatalia currant-coloured patent winter boots!!!  These are two years old, still in fabulous shape and are one of the great loves of my wardrobe!

Me getting ready to go out the door this morning.  And some close-ups:

Aren't they nifty?  They have a great tread and are so lovely!  I get many compliments on them, especially from men, which is odd as they heel is so short.  I have 3 pairs of aquatalia boots and they are all wonderful and sooo comfy!

Soo - have an awesome Thursday and stay safe out there!!!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Style Question Wednesay: Fantasy dress day

Happy Wednesday All!

Today's style question wednesday post is a bit related to my previous post about what you would want to eat for your last supper.  A little more upbeat, however,

You have just been invited to attend:

1) the Academy Awards to receive your lifetime achievement award or
2) the United Nations to receive your Humanitarian of the Year Award 0r
3) the Fashion Night Out evening with George Clooney.

Maybe all three - YOU are special after all!

What is your fantasy outfit?

No worries about weight, height, etc.  You ARE gorgeous, good-looking. YOU can choose anything and it will all look fabulous!

So what will it be?  And yes, because I love you all, you get a few choices for the day - you may want a couple of costume changes! 

I will start the game off:

Well, when I wake up, I will still be hung over from theprevious night's festivities, so I will still be wearing my Lanvin gown:

Lanvin Belted silk-satin gown

It is remarkabe how fine I look!

I am then going to change into a lovely tulle dress for the afternoon, with a big ball skirt.  I will likely be serving long island ice tea on the front porch, just like Scarlett as I get ready for my night out!

Aww - who am I kidding?  Right before dinner, I am going to slip into Scarlett's green velvet dress, just cause...

Over the top you say?  Mais oui...

Oh but I will go demure in the evening, whilst sipping champagne, nestled between my husband and George Clooney on the couch!

I always admired this dress of Gwyneth's so I will likel borrow it:

at the after party?  A bit of Marchesa...

Something demure, you know??

Oh please - do share what you would wear!!!

And in a less fancy vein, what I wore today:

My navy wool capris, navy merino turtleneck and navy wool blazer, all JC, with Lands End pearls:

And it was cold, so I dug out my Cinzia Rocca wool coat with my new Banana Republic wool scarf:

No tulle or diamonds for me today!  I do look kind of demented in thie picture above?  Perhaps it was the velvet dress?

Have a great Wednesday!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

In which WMM cooks pheasant and buys Lancome holiday makeup (not necessarily in that order)

Ah it is Tuesday.  But today's post is all about what I did on Sunday.

On Sunday I roasted pheasant. 

Pheasant is well loved in our house.  My daughter thinks it tastes like chicken nuggets.  I am quite sure that McDonald's does NOT use pheasant for its chicken nuggets...

Here is one of the two little beggars, waiting to go in the oven...

I used Emeril Lagasse's recipe, Roast Pheasant with Whiskey-Cumberland Sauce:


  • 1/4 cup Scotch whisky
  • 2 oranges, cut into 1/8ths
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 (2 to 2 1/2-pound) pheasants
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 slices bacon, halved

Whisky-Cumberland Sauce:

  • 1 cup Scotch whisky
  • 1/2 cup fresh orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons grated orange zest
  • 1 cup red currant jelly
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Pinch cayenne
  • Serving suggestion: Wild rice


For the pheasant: Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

In a bowl, toss the oranges with 3 tablespoons of the whisky. Rub the pheasants with the remaining 1 tablespoon of whisky and lightly season with salt and pepper. Stuff each pheasant with the oranges and 1 sprig of fresh thyme, and close the cavities with skewers. Wrap the breast of each pheasant with the bacon and set in a roasting pan. Roast the pheasants until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the breast registers 160 degrees F., about 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and let stand 10 minutes.

For the Whisky Cumberland Sauce: In a medium saucepan, combine the whisky, orange juice, and orange zest, and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until reduced by 50 percent in volume to about 3/4 cup. Add the currant jelly, salt, and cayenne, and stir well.

Cook until thickened, about 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and pour into a decorative bowl. Cool slightly before serving.

Remove the bacon from the pheasant breasts, if desired, and cut each bird in half. Discard the oranges and thyme in the cavity. Serve hot with Whisky-Cumberland Sauce and wild rice.

It is important to note that I did not have bacon.  Hello Proscuitto!  Just as yummy I think!

It is also important to note that i did not have wild rice.  Hello potatoes! 

Out of the oven, surrounded by Sorrel (the last from my garden), roasted broccoli and potatoes:

Truly a yummy meal!

On another completely unrelated note.  I visited the Lancome counter on Saturday and went away much the poorer.  They had their Christmas offerings out and here is a confession:  I LOVE HOLIDAY MAKEUP!!!

So when I visited, I came away with the following goodies:

The Ombre Hypnose Mono: (in bronze - yummy!)

Lancome Holiday 2012 Collection

Trésor Colour Collection Vernis in Love nail polish

Lancome Holiday 2012 Collection

Flirty Red - OMG - this is a lovely rich red with gold highlights - divine!

And for my hands and the tips of my toes, ginger ritzini:

Lancome Holiday 2012 Collection

Oh and then I thought I needed some lovely pink-y eyeshadow:

Lancome Holiday 2012 Collection

It was called sparkling intoxication after all....

and then the most divine bronze eye pencil, the

Trésor Colour Collection crayon kohl

Lancome Holiday 2012 Collection

Absolutely creamy and lovely - jazzy taupe!

Finally, I needed something for my lips:

Trésor Colour Collection L'Absolu rouge lip colour

Lancome Holiday 2012 Collection

Rouge ernestine.  I don't know who she is, but she has lovely berry-gold lips....

Yup.  All that.  All fabulous.. Why is it that holiday makeup is so yummy?  Oh right, I remember now: it is over the top.... sigh...

Have a most happy Tuesday and stay safe out there....

Monday, November 26, 2012

T-30 Days or WMM begins to deck the halls...

Yesterday, I dug out decorations for around the house.  It was actually snowing a little bit here, so it certainly put us in a festive mood!

It is a chore and a half to dig the things out - they hibernate in rubbermaid bins in our crawl space.  I think that whoever first designed a house with a crawl space should be drawn and quartered.  Oh sure, when you buy the house you think "how often will I go in there anyway?"  Well you will, my friend, you will, and each time you do, you will hate the builder who didn't make a full basement and you will hate yourself for not realizing...  But enough Grinch!

Everyone needs to get a little festive when the season hits.  This little fellow in my kitchen window looks downright jaunty:

Even Indy, wonder dog extraordinaire, agreed to pose for a picture with his reindeer ears:

The liquor bottles also get to get in on the fun:

On top of the buffet, a little wooden sled carries my antique Steiff bear, who carries many friends with him on his little journey:

And my bird bath has been visited by beads and a festive cardinal.

Yes, those are wee deer at the bottom, hiding behind a little fir tree!

I like to fill containers with antique ornaments and beads:

And my little glass bottles certainly show that there is soon to a lot of life in the paperwhite bulbs:

And in a corner is a basket of wind-up toys that have been in stockings over the years and which are a great favourite when people pop over - the children all love them!  When you pop by for your cup of Christmas cheer, we will get them out for sure!

One of my favourite Christmas lovelies is an antique nativity set given to me many years ago by my grandmother:

I love the details

The wreaths are being hung

And a Santa Claus I constructed many years ago looks remarkably like Robertson Davies (how's that for Cancon?)

Garlands going up the stairs...

And my Sunday uniform was black and white with a touch of camel:

Old Talbots Cashmere Boyfriend Cardi, Tippi sweater, Joe Fresh velvet leggings, Uggs and new Lancome lipstick (more on that later!)
 I hope your Sundays were swell and that you are beginning to get into the holiday spirit, whatever and however you celebrate!  Have a great Monday and stay safe out there!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Dear Santa Claus...

Have I been a good girl this year?

Well, I have tried...

It is fun to make our lists for Santa.  Santa typically needs some help. 

Our first Christmas together, we did not have much money.  I picked out a lovely little pink jewellry box that cost $25 (that seemed like the moon then) and Barry, for my surprise, bought me a wooden recipe box.  This did not go over well, as I was quite sure he had mixed me up in his head with his mother!  We went out on the 27th and he purchased a little necklace for me instead....That was 1985, we had both finished our first university degrees and we were living very far away from our families in Regina Saskatchewan in a wee little furnished basement apartment while Barry trained as a police officer.  We had a nice time, but we felt quite lonely for our families that Christmas.  I have always been grateful since then to be near my family and though my dad is gone, I am lucky to have my sister living right across the river from where we are.

I am not a practical Christmas person.  Do not give me a blender or tell me that we will share the cost of a new dishwasher and that will be my "gift".   I do not care whether my gifts are expensive; i like to open little baubles and trinkets and though I make a list to help him so that i don't get another wooden recipe box, I do like a surprise or two.

So Santa, what would I like to see under the tree this year?


Barefoot Contessa Foolproof: Recipes You Can Trust

Ina Garten has a new cookbook out this year and I can't wait to cook out of it!

The Things That Matter

Nate Berkus has a new book out as well, and I am intrigued by the theme of this book - whether or not your home tells the story of who you are.  I like to think mine does, but I love to read books like this!

I dream of having a little special shed in the backyard, so would love to get this book as well:

 Stylish Sheds And Elegant Hideaways: Big Ideas For Small Backyard Destinations

Maybe I should be giving this to Barry instead?  There are plans....

My music boyfriend has a new concert DVD out that will remind me of the amazing time I had seeing him in Boston - need to have that one for sure!

Coldplay: Live 2012

Oh, I will need some fashion books to peruse as well:

Tim Gunn's Fashion Bible: The Fascinating History of Everything in Your Closet

I love Tim!  Sure to be fun to curl up with...

How about Grace Coddington's Memoir?  This one will be amazing, I bet:

Grace: A Memoir

Or how about Hal Rubinstein's 100 unforgettable dresses:

100 Unforgettable Dresses

I have already helped Santa by ordering these beauties:

Collection Nora calf hair ballet flats
Collection Nora calf hair ballet flats.  Get yours here.
 Other things that would be nice?  Oh a bauble or two would be nice...

I would love a nice piece of garnet earrings or a bracelet.  It will be my 50th in January and garnet is the january stone.....

Anything about gardening or flowers would be divine.  Or Paris...Complete surprises are wonderful!

Oh, i am not so complicated Santa!  But please - do not forget the chocolate orange in my sock....

And while you are at it, how about some peace on earth, goodwill towards all and health and happiness for family, friends, and beloved blog friends?  That would be swell!

Friday, November 23, 2012

Black Friday, in which WMM attempts another dress/coat outfit

Happy Friday All!

I am on my last day of bereavement leave and it is Black Friday and all, so I gave in to my baser instincts this a.m.....

I don't see anything at J Crew I want or need, but I have been watching a lightweight wool coat from Banana Republic, which went on sale for 40% off this am.  I also saw a matching wool blend sweater dress and for a combined total of $290 CDN, felt this might be worth a try if it worked.  If it does not, no worries, they send you a free return shipping code!  I wish J Crew would do that!

The colour is the most divinely named "red delicious".  I love apples and this appears to be a wonderful version of red which I think I will be able to pull off.

Cable-knit sleeve sweater dress

and matching coat:

Belted wool wrap coat

On the website, the model, is wearing the jacket open with the sash either removed or tied in back. In that picture, the colour seems more burgundy than wine-y, so we shall see which is the truer colour. Not sure how warm the coat is, but am hopeful it is lightweight, since it says it is only partially lined, which means it is likely too cold for wearing outdoors once we hit January here, which is what I am hoping for as I want to wear it indoors.  Regardless, I think it was worth a try and will let you know when it arrives!  I think it could look very chic in the office if it actually works!

In a related colour story, Dani's recent post on Christmas china, and the fact that we are now approximately 1 month until the big day, inspired me to dig out my own china yesterday and get it all washed up and into rotation

My pattern is "The Night Before Christmas" by the Johnson Brothers and I purchased it at the Royal Doulton Store here in town.  Last year, I purchased many of the serving pieces and a few platters.  This year, I  purchased plates.  It is microwave and dishwasher friendly.

It is a lovely pattern and individual pieces contain lines from the poem.  Here are some of the pieces sitting on my little table which I have covered in a lovely velvet tablecloth for the holidays:

 And some close-up shots:

 It matches very well in my dining room, since my old table has matching chairs in red leather:

Finally, in a completely unrelated note, but more as a public service announcement, run don't walk, to see the movie Lincoln.  It is a spectacular movie and Daniel Day Lewis is truly a genius.  I think that they should simply hand he, Tommy Lee Jones and Sally Field their oscars right now. 

Stay safe if you are shopping out there and have a lovely day!