just a smidgen

Fall Decorating Ideas

Fall decor

Our fall has left us with a sudden drop of snow, but I’d love to share the touches of fall I still have around my home, with a few fall decorating ideas: a tablescape idea and simple changes I’ve made around here now that our Thanksgiving is over and we are just starting to think about Christmas. My kitchen looked like the photo above not too long ago, my tiered tray is filled with everything orange and red with a few pumpkins and macintosh apples. Simple but so cheerful! I added some orange mini pumpkins later on. I’ll share this super easy vegan ice cream recipe another day.

Orange Pumpkins & Vegan Ice Cream

Now that we are in the “shoulder” month before Christmas, my kitchen has been pared back and the calm whites will be the base for the holidays season that begins after Remembrance Day here in Canada. I love my simple white antique ironstone jugs.

November Decor 2014 1

Ok, I’ll admit, I’ve been obsessing about Christmas for two weeks now, ever since Thanksgiving ended.

It’s not the shopping I love, but the decorating!

{ I know, that comes as a real surprise to you:D }

I think this year my colors will be white, gold and silver and so beginning with little bits of this color is a way to start.

White roses in white jugwhite jug w olive oil jug

An easy way to decorate is to group collections together, I have a cake stand collection above my range. I’m thinking of adding clear jars of meringues and some silver and pink ornaments there later. It’s a bit stark right now, but a good base to build on.

Joy sign w cake stands

I moved my vases to the dining room and have a tiny bit of gold left on my fireplace mantel, again, something to build on leading up to Christmas.

Gold candles w mirror

For Thanksgiving, my wooden dough bowl was filled with the rich colours of fruit from the orchards and farmer’s market.

Dough Bowl filled with Fruit

From there it was filled with ghostly white pumpkins and sprigs of seeded eucalyptus.
I love this moody early morning photo.

White Pumpkins in Wooden Dough bowl

this was a still life I wanted to paint.. hopefully one day I’ll be ready, it’s a lot harder than I thought!

White Pumpkin Still Life

I moved my faux flowers to the wooden dough bowl and set it next to a lantern { and some birthday cards }.

The little white owl is another hint of Christmas to come.

Wooden dough bowl with flowers

I kept my basket filled with leftover skeins of wool, it just might stay there all through winter, it makes me feel cozy inside!

basket filled with wool

I hope no one minds a few white reindeer this early.

White reindeer

Our kitchen table is simpler, set with my favorite deep blue pottery from local artist Sheila Shaw at Galleria in Inglewood. I think I will have to add to these few pieces, maybe for Christmas.. hint hint;) I like tossing seeded eucalyptus around, it dries quite nicely. Tucking a little piece of wheat in the napkins is a sweet and simple touch I saw at my friend’s husband’s 50th birthday party. It was a stunning night outside at a long table overlooking the rolling foothills of Alberta and the sunset!

Simple Breakfast Tablescape for fall

Fall Tablescape with blue and whiteblue potteryWhite Napkin and Blue Clay Plate

I’ll see if I can get permission to post a photo of the table and will add that in later.

I layered eucalyptus in my kitchen chandelier as well, making sure they weren’t touching any of the hot light bulbs of course. Once Christmas comes, these will be replaced with a few greens and some hanging silver ornaments.

Eucalyptus in Chandelier

Never one to throw a perfectly good mini pumpkin away, I put them all in my cabinet.. until Christmas forces me to dispose of them.

Pumpkins on shelves

My friends and I have debated Christmas trees this week, they are firm believers in real trees. I am partial to faux trees (in particular one white flocked pre-lit beauty I’ve got my eye on) because I can set them up earlier and enjoy my morning coffee and evening glass of wine next to a softly lit tree.. far longer than I could with a real tree.

Birthday Cake with Seafoam Icing

Last but not least, here is a photo of my wee little cakelet.. our family’s tradition for birthdays, a chocolate layer cake with seafoam icing. This time I cut the recipe in half and used my small William Sonoma cake tins and it worked out perfectly for a family of four for two days.

 

Chocolate Birthday Cake with Seafoam Icing
 
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Ingredients
Cake:
  • 2 square semi-sweet chocolate
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 1 cup hot water
  • 2 egg
  • 2 cup sugar
  • 2 cup flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk or soured milk made by adding 1 tsp of vinegar to 1/2 cup milk
Seafoam Icing:
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/3 cup hot water
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1 tsp vanilla
Instructions
Cake:
  1. Preheat the oven to 350C.
  2. Prepare two round cake tins by buttering. Measure two waxed paper rounds by tracing around the pan with a knife or scissors. Push into the bottom of the tins. Then butter the waxed paper bottoms. Sprinkle a heaping spoonful of flour in and shake to coat. Bang excess flour out.
  3. In a microwave safe 2 cup measuring cup, add the chocolate, shortening and hot water. Microwave in small bursts of 15 seconds, stirring frequently, just until the chocolate is melted. It may not look completely blended, but that won't matter as long as everything is melted.
  4. Meanwhile, in a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, whisk the eggs until foamy. Blend in the sugar. Add in the remaining ingredients in order, mix, scraping the sides and bottom of the bowl with a spatula now and then.
  5. Pour into prepared pans and bake for about 30 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean.
Seafoam Icing:
  1. Combine the first three ingredients in a medium saucepan and cook until a small amount poured into a cup of cold water makes long “threads”.
  2. Meanwhile, beat 3 egg whites until stiff peaks form.
  3. Keeping the mixer beating on a medium speed, add the hot syrup very slowly. Do not scrape down the sides of pan or bowl as this adds grainy crystals to the icing.
  4. Beat until stiff peaks form again and then beat in 1 tsp vanilla.
  5. Ice the cooled cake.
Notes
When halving the seafoam icing recipe, just use two eggs and half of the remaining ingredients.

I make the cake layers a day or two in advance, cool, wrap with saran wrap or tuck separately into ziplock bags and freeze. On the day of the event, I take them out in the afternoon while making the frosting. It's easier to frost frozen cake layers.

Happy Thanksgiving to those who celebrate in November.. by the time you celebrate, my home will be looking like Christmas.

I’m off to buy a poppy, word on the street.. if you wrap a little duct tape around the end of the pin it won’t fall off.

Linking up with City Farmhouse.

Love, Smidge

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