December 9, 2017

home style with the new york housewives

“Word on the street” is that the Real Housewives of New York have already been busy filming season 10 and not only that, but a few of them have been busy redecorating their homes and getting their homes ready for the holidays. The best news of all for me is that the entire season 9 cast is back this year!  

So let's get started...

Firstly, I have to apologize for this being a bit of a long post today, but there's a lot to cover! These women have been busy!

One of my favorite things about watching the Real Housewives is checking out their homes, and my all-time favorites are New York and Beverly Hills! 

I also love that most of them own more than one home.

In addition to their city apartments, lofts or townhouses, several of the NY gals have homes in the Hamptons. And then of course, there’s Dorinda with her fabulous Berkshires mansion! 

Luann’s Hamptons home has recently appeared in Architectural Digest so we can take a sneak peek at its recently zhushed-up interior.

As you can see, Luann replaced the red patchwork cow head in her kitchen with one of her antique mirrors.

This really is a favorite spot for her to pose,

isn’t it?

Here’s a little real action in the kitchen with Sonja,
during filming and seen on Instagram.

Here’s Luann, her son and her niece out on the front porch of her Sag Harbor home. This 19th century Greek Revival house is quite a little gem!  

Do you recognize the kitchen from the show? 

I love how bright and airy it is!

Yum, Yum!

Did they take one of these dining room mirrors
into the kitchen just for the AD photo shoot?


Here’s Lu singing and partying with Sonja
in her dining room, possibly during filming of RHONY…  

A peaceful view out back.

Here’s where she sat with Andy Cohen
for her post-divorce interview.

Sonja and Lu single and ready to mingle!

This little sign is so funny after what happened
 last season to Luann in Mexico!

Here's another pretty view of the back of Luann's home.

And now on to Dorinda...

She's been super busy promoting Home Goods 
and with all the excitement of the holidays,
I don't blame her!

Who would turn down getting your whole apartment
decked out for Christmas courtesy of Home Goods?

If you follow Dorinda on Instagram,
you’ve probably seen all of her fun
Home Goods insta-stories and posts.

Don’t you just love her?

Her tree does look very pretty…

Here’s Dorinda’s dining room in the city, but what I really can’t wait to see is her Berkshires dining room. I hope all the ladies get to spend lots of time there this season.

Shopping at Home Goods is always a good time!

Bethenny has great style too, and news broke just this week that she purchased a second home in the Hamptons. She’s becoming quite a real estate mogul as well as Skinny Girl mogul

Don’t forget she has a new real estate show coming to Bravo soon with Fredrik Eklund. (BTW, Fredrik and his husband just welcomed twins into the world this week, a boy and a girl!)

Simple holiday décor is the best way to go in Bethenny’s New York apartment. Don't you just love the white tree and fluffy stockings? 

Fabulous “Skinny Girl" red highlights Bethenny’s front door and it also plays a big part in accenting the rest of her Hamptons home.

 Such charm in the Hamptons!

Here’s the front of Bethenny’s new Hampton’s home, not far from her other weekend home. This former bed and breakfast may be a new business venture for her.

I can’t wait to see how she renovates, decorates and designs the inside of this home.

How about making this a vacation home for wayward housewives? Lol.

Bethenny’s a big fan of TJ Maxx and Home Goods too, so I hope she shares some of her decorating tips with all of us!

And we can’t forget about Ramona (and her contractor Mario)… She just renovated her lower east side apartment last season and it was a HUGE improvement. Now she’s working on updating her Hamptons home. This is a little peek she just shared on Instagram.

Carole is always on top of the most fabulous design trends and her home also recently appeared in Architectural Digest.

Tinsley recently moved into her own place after breaking up with boyfriend, Scott and finally moving out of Sonja’s townhouse. We’ll have to see what her place looks like!

I hope you enjoyed this little bit of RHONY. The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills starts up again on December 19th, and until then, I’ll anxiously be awaiting the latest design updates from the BH gals!  Who are your BH  housewives faves? 

ciao! fabiana

photo credit:
Architectural Digest, People, Instagram

December 8, 2017

easy spritz cookie recipe

My family and I make spritz cookies every year for Christmas. It’s actually pretty fun to shoot these little beauties out of the cookie press, and they come out perfectly formed in our desired shape. And as you'll see from the recipe, there's not a lot of sugar in these cookies, so they perfect with your morning tea or coffee or with a little hot cocoa in the evening. 

A little box of these also makes a nice gift! 

I first started making these years ago when we inherited a cookie press from my husband’s Nana. We used it for several years, but it eventually wore out, and I purchased a Pampered Chef version that’s been fabulous. It’s what we use every year to make these adorable treats.

If you’re not familiar with a cookies press, it’s basically a cylinder with a sort of lever at one end that pushes shaped cookies out of the other end.

All you do is choose one of many festive shapes, screw it on the cookie press and fill with cookie dough. The dough is pretty easy to work with too. It’s kind of got the consistency of play dough so it’s fun to work with. They secret is not to let the dough get too warm, and it helps to press these onto a cooled cookie sheet.  

I think these are a lot easier and 
more fun to make than traditional sugar cookies. 

Traditional Spritz Cookies

1 cup butter, softened
½ cup sugar
2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon salt
1 egg
¼ teaspoon vanilla
Natural food color and sprinkles, if desired

Heat oven to 400ºF. Beat butter and sugar in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed, or mix with spoon. Stir in flour, salt, egg, vanilla and a few drops of food color.

Place dough in cookie press. Form desired shapes on ungreased cookie sheet.

Bake 5 to 8 minutes or until set but not brown. Immediately remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. To decorate cookies after baking, use a drop of corn syrup to attach decorations to cookies.

By the way, the name spritz comes from a German word that means "to squirt" because the soft dough is squirted through the cookie press to make super cute designs. 

The luxurious texture and flavor of these cookies comes from the butter, and to me, they actually taste better the next day!

So tell me, have you ever made spritz?

ciao! fabiana

December 7, 2017

a very dreamy christmas

I’m really an old soul at heart,
and especially love all the special traditions of Christmas.

One of my favorite things to do is tturn out all the lights 
and let the twinkle lights on the tree illuminate the whole room.

It feels so cozy, doesn’t it? 

A Christmas movie night is a must!

Of course, Christmas movies are so sentimental and there are so many great ones.

One of my favorites is “Christmas in Connecticut”.* I just discovered this classic movie a few years ago, and it’s so fun! In the movie, Barbara Stanwyck writes a newspaper column called “Diary of a Housewife” and she plays sort of a 1940’s perfect-homemaker, Martha Stewart-type character. 

Well, her whole lifestyle turns out to be a sham, and she has to somehow pretend to be this persona she’s created throughout the holidays. It’s sweet, and of course has a nice feel-good ending.  

*If you want to DVR it, it’s on TCM on December 17.  

And, “Elf” is definitely a family fave around here!

Son of a nutcracker!

You really can’t beat Will Farrell’s sense of humor. 

I just love the silhouette of a beautiful Christmas tree!

And these quaint little villages remind me of my snowy childhood in upstate New York.

I also love the smell of fresh gingerbread cookies and this year 
I may even tackle making a gingerbread house from scratch.  

Today was the day for making spritz cookies. 
It just wouldn’t seem like Christmas around here 
without these cute little treats.

(Recipe on the blog tomorrow)

This is the sweetest little ornament that I’ve seen all year!

Available from Lauren Conrad for Kohl's.

And I love Lauren’s simple ideas for wrapping, too.

I miss those days gone by of sharing the wonder of Christmas with my sweet little babies.

This vignette from Downton Abbey captures the preciousness of those faraway days.

Panettone is essential for our family every year
especially when enjoyed along with a yummy cappuccino.

The name literally means large cake. 

It’s always fun to make bread pudding with these Italian cakes too!

These days you see Panettone everywhere, so 
how do you feel about this Christmas treat?

ciao! fabiana

photo credit:  1. & 2. Christmas-Winter Tumblr  3.  Dreamy Whites  
4. Ciao Newport Beach  5. Pop & Soda  6. & 7. Lauren Conrad
8. Downton Abbey  9. Laura Adani


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