Saturday, October 30, 2010

Simply, (and a wee bit sassy) Saturday.

I came across this one day and...honestly? It just made me giggle. Chandelierious will never, ever be snarky or mean-spirited. This is just plain cute. Happy weekend!

Friday, October 29, 2010

A Full Circle Friday...

The one and only Eloise Thompson had her Halloween school parade this afternoon. This was her third time parading through the neighborhood with her classmates, crunching through the leaves, waving at the array of spectators, loving this truly exciting moment...

What's full circle about this occasion is that Eloise goes to the same elementary school as I did. We live within two blocks of the house I grew up in. My parents still live there. Her beloved neighborhood is my childhood world,  and I walked that same parade route as a child. It never fails to tug at my heart strings every time this event occurs. I have vivid memories of my Halloween parades, like our daughter will someday. It's a beautiful thing...

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Thirsty Thursday

Another adult beverage to share on this fine, albeit  brisk, Thursday in upstate New York. It's October, the gorgeous leaves are falling and crunching under foot, and I'm in the mood for maple. It's one of my favorite flavors...and it inspired today's cocktail.

                                                          The Maple Kiss

1/3 oz. Canadian Whiskey
1/3 oz. Maple Syrup (REAL, no Aunt Jemima nonsense here, please.)
1/3 oz. Raspberry Schnapps

Pour in order and Mmmm.....

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Got The Time?

J'adore clocks. Always have.  I find the look of them and the mechanics of them fascinating. Especially, skeleton clocks, ones that have the inner mechanisms exposed. That's a thing of beauty. Clocks are a terrific and extremely easy way to add some classic decor to your world. So simple. A single time piece is lovely and purposeful. But imagine a collection, sitting together. Like these pocket watches above from Pottery Barn...a grouping of three makes something nice something fantastic.
But why stop at three? Take a look at what a large, varied collection does on a wall.
This? Is divine. Classic, eclectic and absolutely stunning. 

How easy would this be to make your room stand out from every other living room, office, den or dining room? Mix it up with new and old pieces. No need to spend a lot of money either...(shhh, I've seen similar items at any of the big "marts".)
Here are two of my favorite time pieces from my personal collection. The first was one I found at the Salvation Army for $3.99. I white washed it and hung it right up in the dining room where it's happily lived for 9 years. 

 This one, I found at Pier 1.  A large, "vintage" pocket watch that I knew would fit perfectly in our guest room. A room filled with antique photos of loved ones and my great grandmother's furniture.

 Time pieces are an ideal way to add something lovely to your home. Practical, functional, useful....and yes, beautiful. Even, chandelierious.
Tick tock.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Tips-y Tuesday

Announcing today's simple tip: go window shop. Yes, seriously. I mentioned it yesterday. I love it. Sometimes I think leisurely perusing a store is more satisfying than exchanging money for an actual product. Sure, you need some time, so... take it. Take an hour or two on the weekend. Walk through a place like The Christmas Tree Shop that's filled to the brim with everything under the sun, from q-tips to frames made for that vintage album cover you can't bear to get rid of. Stores like that or Marshalls, TJMaxx, Hobby Lobby, Pier 1 or Anthropologie all inspire me. The colors stimulate me. The scent of candles and seasonal cinnamon make me feel warm and cozy. Random found objects like these chairs I spotted at TJMaxx send my mind into decorating land, planning some future room themed specifically around studded pink leather or aqua brocade.

There's retail therapy, and then there's browsing/window shopping/sometimes sanity saving/inspirational therapy. I like both. But, here's the hot tip, the latter is FREE.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Oooo, shiny!

It's not too late to decorate your humble abode for Halloween! Over the weekend I took the time to "window shop" in some of my favorite haunts (hardy har har). So many cute things out there to make your Halloween inspired, and yes, even stylish!
Not surprisingly, everything I was drawn to was covered in glitter. Yes. This lady loves the glitz and glam and even All Hallows Eve can be fabulous. Frighteningly so.
Check out these cute little signs from The Christmas Tree shop. $2.99 each...

Target had their fair share of sparkly skeletons and skulls, too.  And in the unlikely case you haven't heard, skulls have been all the rage for quite some time. I'm loving these... Post Halloween clearance, anyone? Yup. Me!

Of course Marshalls never fails. The glitter encrusted purple pumpkin and divinely  enormous witch shoes are a hit with me.

How great would those witchiepoo boots be filled with painted, shimmering black and purple "ting" (which is just the fancy name for colorful, curly twigs) ?
Go grab a few more decorations if you want...there's plenty of time. Or, wait till
Monday and grab it all at least half off. Just be warned, I'll fight you for the skulls and boots!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Simply, Sunday.

Chandelierious keeps it simple this Sunday with a link and a smile. My daughter Eloise and I spent the afternoon at our cousin Maya's 5th birthday party at The Victor Apple Farm. What a perfect day. A scenic drive thru Victor N.Y....The aptly named Maple Street was lined with the most breathtaking fall colors. I actually said to Ellie, "lets move to Maple Street, ok?" to which she simply replied "no...but I'll move to New York City." (that's my girl.) The Apple Farm is owned and run by a family that has been a part of my family for many years. I've been going since I was a little girl.  It's a very special, sentimental place. 

We played on the haystacks, had pony rides, went on a wagon ride into the orchard and picked a half peck of golden delicious, red delicious and jonagolds...mmmm....topped those off with cinnamon sugar donuts and their sweet cider. Couldn't have been a more gorgeous Autumn day. A simple, sublime Sunday.

Friday, October 22, 2010


As a stay home mama, I normally don't use this acronym. But today? Oh yes, I shall use it. It's been a long, busy, chilly, rainy week and this mama is getting her "GNO" on tonight with two of her besties. So today, I will keep things simple, light and easy breezy letting Mother Nature and all her glory do the blogging. These are all simple shots from the humble camera on my phone. They ought to inspire something chandelierious in you better than I ever could....

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Thirsty Thursday

It's Thursday!!! You know what that means...but, guess what??? This one is NOT an adult beverage.  I suppose it could be tweaked to become one. Hmm... actually, that's a great thought... but, for now, this is one you can make for your the wee little ones, too. A seasonally delicious and mildly nutritious milk shake. Mmm....milk shakes. Bring it. I shall call this:

                                              The Perfectly Palatable Pumpkin Shake

*3 scoops vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt *OR* Edy's Pumpkin Pie ice cream  (it's seasonal, but would make for the ultimate, most decadently pumpkin-y, pumpkin milk shake!)
*2 tablespoons of canned pumpkin (personally, I'd add a bit more)
*1/4 tsp. cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice
*1/4 cup of milk

Combine in blender until smooth. Sprinkle the top with cinnamon, or add a dollop of whipped cream. Better yet? BOTH.

 Go get your milk shake on...

Wednesday, October 20, 2010


Yes, I know... I admit it, that title is rather... lame. But, since I'm talking about halloween decor, it's rather apropos, right? (In an admittedly lame way.) Anyway, I love- love- love to decorate our house for the holidays! Generally, we go with "merry not scary" this time of year, but we do have our fair share of ghosts, skeletons and sticky cotton cobwebs. We aren't out to win any contests. The festive pieces we display are all in the name of silly, and sometimes sentimental, Halloween fun. 
Our haunted house airblown carousel is Eloise's favorite thing!

The Hallmark singing tree stump is another favored choice. It lights up and sings a seasonal ditty to the tune of The Addams Family theme song. What could possibly be better than that you may ask? I'll tell you...The beloved toilet paper roll wrapped in orange fabric that Eloise made in preschool at age 3. It's the clear winner.

Out and about, I saw these fun items below in Marshalls yesterday. I really love the glittery purple, silver and black pumpkins! They'd be great displayed in a bowl or apothecary jar. In fact, if they're still around during the post Halloween clearance, they'll have a happy little home here at my house. And I find the little skeleton man so delightfully Tim Burton-esque. Merry, not scary.

Whatever you choose to do, or not do for that matter, to your home this Halloween, please just have FUN. It's one of those times you can let your creativity and imagination run absolutely wild . There is no wrong answer. It's all...

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Tips-y Tuesday!

Another magical item to share. Another item you've probably got in your cleaning arsenal.... Presenting:

                                                                The Magic Eraser
The magic eraser = genius. Where was this product of epic proportions all my life? Waiting to be invented, I suppose. My personal favorite usage of the handy, dandy eraser is removing those dastardly scuff marks from the hardwood or tile floors.  It *does* occasionally remove a bit of the shiny finish off the wood floors, but a spritz of cooking oil spray on your finger will make that spot good as new. (Just don't overuse and be sure to rub in well, or you'll be sliding across the floor like Tom Cruise in his white button down and Ray Bans.)
More great uses?
* removes tarnish from silver
*removes marks (and marker!) from walls and trim
*removes hair dye from floors and bathroom counters
*removes hard stains from stove tops
*cleans grimy dirt from plastic kids toys and refrigerator handles

It's a little miracle sponge this mama can't do without.
What are your favorite ways to use the Magic Eraser?

Monday, October 18, 2010

The Great Pumpkin

Today I pay homage to the pumpkin. The great pumpkin. That usually roundish, often cumbersome, seasonally decorative squash and all it's variations. Orange pumpkins, variegated green pumpkins or white "ghost" pumpkins (which I happen to have a special affinity for). Naturally, decorating with them this time of year is a given, so I won't even broach that subject for the moment. You already know to put one, or a dozen, on your front step. Lets discuss other forms of pumpkinly worship instead, shall we?
Like, paint? (You know I have to take it "there." ) Paint is a perfect way to keep that warm, festive energy all year round. A burnt orange or spicy terracotta color will compliment any decor. Striking and fresh with white trim, or warm and cozy with richer, darker trims and furnishings. It's a bold and brave choice and I love it! Take a look at this delicious pumpkin pie paint color from Sherwin Williams, Yam #6643:

Or... consider wearing your affection with some jewelry! These earrings were made by my friend Karley of Loubird Handmade. The translucent cognac color is delicious and would compliment any skin tone.

More ways to honor the pumpkin? Why, treats, of course! Obviously, a pumpkin isn't just lovely to look at, it's downright yummy. In our house, we love to make pumpkin bread and pie...and often! Last Fall, I was on a mission to taste every pumpkin donut in town. Some were better than others, but, truly? I'm not fussy. A donut is a donut is a donut...and I? Enjoy a donut.
But, back to of my absolute favorite treats are the homemade pumpkin whoopie pies sold at the Rochester Public Market. Sunshine and love in a tiny cake sandwich is what they really should be called.

Another seasonal must is Pumpkin Spice coffee! Nowadays, it's sold everywhere...Dunkin Donuts, Tim Horton's, Starbucks and Panera all have their own version. But, I prefer brewing some Finger Lakes Roasters right here at home each morning.
If coffee's not your thing, don't forget my pumpkin martini post from last week. Keep checking back for more seasonally inspired food and drink recipes!

Pumpkin love. Eat it, drink it, decorate it, paint it, wear it.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Simply Sunday


                                       No spring nor summer beauty hath such grace
                                               as I have seen in one autumnal face.
                                                                     (John Donne)

                                                             Enjoy your Sunday...

Friday, October 15, 2010

Loving Basic Black & White

Last week I waxed poetic on the importance of color in the home. Specifically, in mine. This still holds true. But today? I will see that thought, and raise you this one: sometimes, it's just got to be black and white. I love black and white together. Black and white check, polka dot, stripes or harlequin'd diamond patterns... Perfectly chandelierious!
Like my post about the virtue of the chandelier the black and white combination can belong anywhere, becoming a natural addition to a traditional settings, or eclectic and whimsical styles.
For example, a check is the perfect accent pattern to set off a floral, or stripe. It sets off paint colors beautifully as well, framing whatever it surrounds, making everything "pop". Visually interesting while simultaneously neutral.

Almost every room in my home is dotted with black and white patterns. Two of my favorite examples being my kitchen floor...(say hi to Chloe and Trixie!)

...and this french provincial settee I found at the thrift store and had reupholstered for my daughter Eloise's of a kind, custom vintage fab.

Try it! You just might like it. Take a chance with something small like a chandelier cord/chain cover, a curtain, a pillow...or go big with a surprising piece of furniture or retro checkerboard floor! 
Oh yes, sometimes life is simply black & white.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Thirsty Thursday

Another Autumnally inspired adult refreshment for you today on Chandelierious! Pumpkin is one of my all time favorite flavors...I crave all things pumpkin: coffee, donuts, pancakes, bread, pasta and yes, cocktails. Give this little cocktail a try:
                                                            The Pumpkin-tini 

*1 part Vodka (plain or vanilla)
*1 part Pumpkin spice liqueur  (I have Hiram Walker)

Cinnamon sugar the rim of martini glass, if desired. Combine ingredients in a shaker with ice. Shake your heart out, strain and serve.


OR...perhaps this is more to your liking:

                                                          Pumpkin Pie Martini

*1 part Pumpkin liqueur
*1/2 part coffee liqueur
*1/2 part butterscotch schnapps
*1/2 part half and half

Combine in shaker with ice, shake her up, strain and serve. Garnish with some whipped cream, if desired!

Happy cocktails!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Cheap? Moi? No. Thrify and nifty? Oh, yes.

It's Wednesday, I adore Wednesdays. Not because it's that hump day that carries you from the beginning of the week almost to the weekend, but because they are "half off days". Oh, yeah....
Tidbit about me: I love thrift stores. I mean, I LOVE thrift stores. The thrill of the hunt is delectable. Sure, it's always hit or miss. I could spend hours thumbing through racks and shelves and come home empty handed, but finding a Ralph Lauren tuxedo dress with $160.00 retail tags intact for $3.00 and change, is euphoric. As is scoring a used, but retired Blues Clues thinking chair for $1.00, cleaning it up, and selling it online for $80.00. True story.

This type of hunting is FUN! And bonus! It's harmonious with the whole "living green" thing! Recycling, up-cycling, "new to you", whatever you may call it, it's good for everyone. It's an object's circle of life, if you will.  1)Sally Smilesalot makes room weeding out her old sweater, donating it to a thrift store. 2) Thrify McThrift store in turn sells said sweater, whose profit benefits some sort of charity. 3) Said sweater has a new home with Jenny Jumpingjacks who thinks her "new" sweater is the cat's pajamas and saved a ton of money buying vintage. Win. Win. Win. Triple win.
I got my thrift on today as a matter of fact. Look at this gem:
A Ralph Lauren heavy weight poncho/jacket for $5.00. Yup. That's one I will turn over for a tidy profit.
Whether you are like me and like to look at it all, or you're just looking for that perfectly shabby mirror, retro kitchen set, vintage leather jacket or old teacup to add to your eclectic collection, thrift stores are the bee's knees.

*Salvation Army is half off clothing and shoes every Wednesday and most thrift stores offer half off a certain ticket color daily! Go find your local S.A., Goodwill or Volunteers of America. Happy hunting!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Tips-y Tuesday!

Today I present to you something simple. Something you likely have in your drawer. Something you likely have used at least one hundred times in your life thus far. Something that that simply rocks my socks.
Behold: the genius that is the magic marker!!!!
Specifically, the Sharpie.
I'm not sure if you are aware of the this, but the Sharpie, especially the black variety, is a tool of enormous proportions. Of course, it's dandy for writing with, for permanently marking random items with...yes, all the typical usages. BUT, were you aware that it is also magnificent at camouflaging that pesky scratch in your wood table? Or filling in that little piece of carpeting that's worn away?
Or using to finely detail something on that painted project you've been working on...
And play with the color choices! There are literally dozens. I believe I currently am the proud owner of approximately 30 or so Sharpies...colors for every project you could imagine. Next time you mindlessly pick up that old marker that's been sitting in your drawer helping you make life a little bit easier over the years, show it a little love. Sharpies are brilliant. Period. Go, color! 
Warning: Magic Marker Porn.

* to those of you that abhor the magic marker because your two year old just used the wall as their canvas. I feel your pain. I do...and next Tuesday I've got a tip for YOU!
** If you have a tip or two, please share them in the comments section!

Monday, October 11, 2010


My doggies are basking in the late afternoon daughter's out on an adventure with her grandparents...I sit here listening to the workers hammering a new roof onto my neighbors house. I actually love that sound. Truly. That sound of DOING. Right now, it's the sound of some metal tool, clanging. It reminds me of some old school tool you'd hear on The Little House on the Prairie. Like, Pa is forging some piece of iron...maybe a new spatula for Laura and Almonzo's wedding anniversary.
Anyway, that's this home improvements. No big adventures. Though, I did get a surprise visit from a wonderful, old friend. Someone who never fails to brighten my day or leave me laughing, cackling like a witch. I hope you have at least one friend like that. (Thanks, Ev! )
The leaves are getting more beautiful, the sky once again is blue and I think pizza may be the order of the day, dinner wise. Some days, it's ok to do nothing but be.
Sometimes, that's where the beauty lies.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Simply, Saturday.

Weekends are precious, right? Chandelierious  goes laid back on the weekend. Think casual Friday, but it's Saturday. Or Sunday. Still fabulous. But, simply so...quietly so. Maybe just a photo, a link, a quote, an anecdote, a recipe....
Oh A recipe! Autumnally apropos and absolutely delectable.

                                                   Pumpkin Lasagna

1/2 lb. sliced fresh mushrooms 
1 small onion, chopped
1 tsp. salt, divided
2 tsp. olive oil
2 cans (15.0z) solid pack pumpkin
3/4 cup half and half
1 tsp. dried sage leaves
dash of pepper
9 lasagna noodles 
2 cups ricotta cheese
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese 
3/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese

1) In a small skillet, saute the mushrooms, onion and 1/2 tsp. of salt in oil until tender. Set aside.
2) In a medium sized bowl, combine pumpkin, cream, sage, salt and pepper.
Spread  some of the pumpkin sauce in an 11x7 baking dish. Top with 3 noodles.
Spread with pumpkin sauce, top with half of onion/mushroom mixture, a little salt, a little pepper, layer ricotta, mozzarella and parmesan cheese. Repeat layers.
Top with remaining noodles and sauce.
3) Cover and bake at 375' for 45 minutes. Uncover, sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake 10-15 minutes longer or until cheese is melted. Let stand for 10 minutes before cutting.

My 2 cents/tweaking of this recipe:
*Add more mushrooms as they shrink down so much, and use something flavorful like baby bellas.
*Instead of mozzarella, try a flavorful italian blend of shredded cheeses, or better yet some gruyere! Or even better yet? A blend of BOTH.
*I prefer pecorino romano to parmesan, personally.
*Salt and pepper to your tastes.
*Try a whole grain lasagna noodle which adds flavor and texture.
*I also like to add layers of baby spinach for color and extra nutrients.
*Skim milk or evaporated skim milk can be used in lieu of half and half.

This lasagna is seriously loaded with all things good for you: protein, fiber, beta carotene, antioxidants, vitamins, potassium....the list goes on. But, simply, it's
DELICIOSO!  Give it a go!

Friday, October 8, 2010


Sun. Period.
It's an absolutely gorgeous fall day here in Rochester, N.Y. The leaves are nearing their peak reds, golds, and oranges. The sky is blue.
Things to do, people to see, pumpkin lasagna to prepare. In other words, too splendid a day to be uber bloggy.
I will simply leave you with this...go enjoy this magnificent day, friends.

Utter gorgeousness.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Thirsty Thursday

Welcome. Welcome to Thirsty Thursday's on you know what that means? Yes. Oh yes. Cocktails....and whatnot. Good, right? And why not?
It's October and if you're anything like me, you've already jumped on the harvest bandwagon and gone to a local apple farm. Also, if you're anything like me,  you may have bought a huge gallon of delicious apple cider, in spite of knowing full well that unless you're serving it for breakfast, lunch and dinner, you'll never use the whole gallon before it gets...wonky...for lack of a better term. Or, perhaps you're  some sort of cider aficionado and really will drink it all, in which case...bygones.
Let's say for the sake of today's post you have extra and you hate to waste it.
Idea: Apple Cider Martini's! Yummilicious.
Cider. Vodka. Cinnamon. Voila'!
Here are two simple recipes you might enjoy trying:

                                                        The Apple Cider Martini

4 oz. apple cider
2 oz. vodka
ground cinnamon

Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker. Shake well, strain and pour into your favorite cocktail glass. Garnish with a sprinkle of cinnamon.

                                                   The Caramel Apple Cider Martini

2 oz. vodka
1 oz. butterscotch schnapps
splash of apple cider
cinnamon sugar blend

Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker. Shake well, strain and pour into a cocktail glassed rimmed in cinnamon sugar.

*Have fun with these. Garnish them with a cinnamon stick or caramel lollipop as pictured above!

**I would be remiss to write about apple farms without giving a little plug to my favorite local ones.  holds a special place in my heart as it's owned and run by a family that has been an extended part of my family my whole life.
and in Hilton, N.Y. Crackling fireplace and warm cinnamon sugar donuts. I needn't say more.