February 28, 2018

the cutest ideas for babies & toddlers

When my children were younger, they always enjoyed Eric Carle’s colorful and adventurous books, especially The Very Hungry Caterpillar and The Very Busy Spider

We must have read those books a thousand times, and we always enjoyed the little adventure it took us on while turning those little pages.

And now Eric Carle’s brilliant illustrations are brought to life with a line of adorable and fun rugs that are perfect for any little boy or girls bedroom and would be a great inspiration piece for a playroom. In a collaboration with Home Dynamix, the Eric Carle Rug Collection features the timeless Eric Carle characters that’s we’ve all grown to love, with the bright graphic maps and alphabet images that are as cute as they are educational.

I’m expecting a couple of little visitors to my house very soon…

So, I've got this cute rug all set up
next to out basket of toys...

These would also be fun in a 
preschool classroom or Sunday school room.

Check out the whole selection here:

And if a little one you love is having a birthday
I just found these adorable 

So sweet!

ciao! fabiana

Thank you to the Eric Carle Collection for sending me this product to review. 

The opinions expressed in this post are truly my own.

February 27, 2018

featured designer: amber lewis

One of my favorite designers these days is
super hippy-chic, Malibu gal, Amber Lewis.

Every room she designs is beautiful and has
that effortless, lived-in look.

I love how she combines old and new to achieve her signature
laid-back beachy California look.

So today, just for fun,

I’m sharing my favorite Amber Lewis kitchens

Stay tuned for more “Featured Designers” this month

where I'll be sharing the work of my favorite local designers.

ciao! fabiana

photo credit:  Amber Interior Design

For more home tour inspiration,
check out this brand new book:

February 25, 2018

ciao sunday

Just sharing a few of my favorite ciao
goodies that I’ve seen around the web

Running errands has never been this fun…
now that I have my new pink and cheery

Ciao Bella espadrilles to kick around in!

Made by one of my faves, Soludos,
they’re so comfy!

which have now replaced wearing other plain flats altogether!

These are sold out in several stores,
but they’re still available here.

And speaking of ciao,
which is what this whole post is about, lol

You may recognize gray malin’s breathtaking photography from seeing his work in magazines,
in amazing coastal homes and on so many blogs.

Here’s another one of favorite Gray Malins… 

This print is cute too! Found here.

Pottery Barn Kids has these adorable wooden
Ciao signs in lots of fun colors… 

 I have this fun Kate Spade "Ciao Bella" pillow on order,
as we speak… so pretty!!

found here and here.


found here.

found here.

Coming and going through the front door 

So perfect, since ciao means hello and goodbye!

found here.

ciao! fabiana

February 23, 2018

the cake we can't stop eating !

One of the best things about winter in

southern california is that all the
citrus trees are producing tons of fruit right now…

especially oranges and lemons!

It starts in early December,
and is still going strong now in mid February.

navel orange tree that has the juiciest fruit,

so perfect for munching on or for baking!

Just look at these beauties...

That brings me to this amazing cake

My husband’s aunt and uncle are visiting from New York City and we wanted to treat them to a special home-cooked meal.

I totally love them because they’re so cultured, but yet so down to earth. And, they love a good theme dinner as much as I do!

I’ll never forget when they entertained us at their country home in Bedford, New York and created a whole French themed dinner with a movie for us! Aunt Jackie is a fabulous cook, and I remember she made filet mignon paired perfectly with an amazing French wine and then we watched “The Scarlet Pimpernel”, a classic movie about the French revolution.

So for our evening hosting them, we had an Italian-Argentine theme which featured flank steak with chimichurri sauce and this amazing Orange Olive Oil Cake.

I’ve made this cake dozens of times because it’s a family favorite, and my oldest son always requests it for his birthday. If you’ve never had a cake made with olive oil, you’re in for a real treat! 

And add to it freshly zested and juiced oranges, and you literally will find it hard to stop at just one piece. My grandmother made olive oil cakes all the time. It's very typical in Italy.

Orange Olive Oil Cake

Butter, for greasing the pan
1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour, plus more for the pan
¾ cup sugar
2 eggs
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Juice and zest of 1 orange (about 3 tablespoons juice, 1 tablespoon zest)
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
Confectioners' sugar for dusting

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 9-inch round cake pan. 

Mix together the sugar and eggs in a medium bowl with a hand mixer on medium speed until blended and light. Drizzle in the olive oil and vanilla and mix until light and smooth. Add the orange juice and zest and mix well.

Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in another medium bowl. Add the flour mixture half at a time to the wet ingredients and mix on low just to incorporate. Pour into the prepared cake pan and bake, 25 to 30 minutes.

Let the cake cool 15 minutes, dust with confectioners' sugar and serve.   (Recipe courtesy Melissa d'Arabian)

Don’t be intimidated. This cake is soooo easy to make. It’s my first time baking it in this cute heart-shaped silicone pan from Ikea. I topped it with thinly sliced tangerines which soaked a little extra juice into the cake.

It was a real hit with Uncle Bob, who had three pieces! The cake disappeared so fast on Wednesday night, that I made another one yesterday and that one disappeared within hours too! It really pairs nicely with wine, coffee, tea or milk. 

I love to dip it in my morning cappuccino!

I really hope you try making this cake, and if you do, please let me know how you like it!

ciao! fabiana

p.s.  Remember the lovely weekend
my husband and I had staying at

These rooftop photos were taken there!

p.p.s. The mangia jacquard napkins are from World Market.

February 22, 2018

color inspiratation: blue and white

Nothing is more chic
than the color combination

This classic combo is both
casual and sophisticated at once.

So today I’m sharing a little dose of

Which one caught your attention?

ciao! fabiana

photo credit: 1, 2, 5, 7, House Beautiful  3 Elle Décor  4 Country Living
6 House & Home  8, 11 Veranda  9 Martha Stewart  10 Serena & Lily


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