Magical Samhain Night

Enchanted Floating Candles

We made these enchanted candles to give a magical touch to our festivities.

One of our favorite holidays to celebrate is Halloween or Samhain. Sometimes we get a little carried away with decorations and treats, but it sure is fun! More is more! We had fun making some crafts, spooky flying fairy skeletons, enchanted candles like in Harry Potter and ribbon garlands to hang over doorways in Halloween colors and patterns. Food. We also made lots of tasty food. Spooky food. Ok, maybe not so spooky, but creative and festive for the occasion. I got lots of ideas from magazines and pinterest. Check out my Halloween board to see some of the inspiration. I discovered ways to take the inspiration and make it my own, and in some cases improving on the ideas. (read more)

MelindaMagical Samhain Night
Brunch for bees.

Brunch for the Bees

Brunch for the Bees in the Garden

Ted built this beautiful pond himself.

My friends Rosie and Cat and I hosted a Brunch for Bees in Rosie’s lovely garden last Sunday. The Brunch for Bees is a way to take action to help retailers stop selling the pesticides that kill bees. Friends of the Earth has a brunch hosting kit and guide to hosting one of your own, including recipes, signs and messages to post on your social media sites. Bees pollinate one in three bites of the food that we eat and are declining at alarming rates, with pesticides being one of the leading causes of their decline. The brunch is helping to urge TrueValue Hardware and Ace Hardware stores to stop selling these pesticides called neonicotinoids. And, it is an excuse to get together with friends and family and have brunch! Click on the links to learn more or visit www.foe.org (read more)

MelindaBrunch for the Bees
Persian Love Cake- Exotic Baking

Persian Love Cake

Persian Love Cake- Exotic Baking

Spice infused chiffon cake with a light saffron and rose frosting. Divine.

Exotic, romantic, beautiful. Persian Love Cake. My good friend Kristi requested I make this cake for our friend Autumn’s bridal/bachelorette party we hosted. I thought it was stunning and couldn’t wait to try the worldly flavors. Cardamom, saffron, pistachios, rose…So bohemian and a feast for the senses.

I don’t exactly consider myself a baker. I usually bake a cake or two a year, rarely do I bake cookies, maybe around Christmas. When I do bake, I tend to challenge myself, thinking how hard can it be right? This cake was not simple, and I think perhaps the altitude of Colorado might have been working against me on this one. My cake was not as fluffy as I was hoping, but the flavor. Wow. It was light and not too sweet, full of perfumed mystery. This cake screams Valentines Day if you’re so inclined. I thought Kristi was right on point with choosing this cake as a send off into marriage for our friend. ┬áThe recipe made 2 small heart shaped pans. I think I will double it next time, cause there will be a next time… (read more)

MelindaPersian Love Cake
Coreopsis. Bohemian Cottage

Plant Exchange Potluck

Hen

This year at the Rocky Mountain Gardening Forum Plant Exchange we met this hen.

The Rocky Mountain Gardening Forum annual Spring plant exchange this year was in Arvada. There was a potluck and hundreds of plants being exchanged by gardeners of all levels, from the beginner to the master gardener. The hosts had a chicken coop where this little hen lived with about 5 others. The gardening forum holds the plant exchange a couple times of year, in the spring and again in the fall. everyone starts plants from seed or divides them from established plants in their gardens to bring to share with one another. It is a wonderful way to expand the plants in the garden without having to spend any money at the garden center. This year I shared lemon balm, golden zucchini, chives, coreopsis and strawberries. It is nice to see the plants that are reproducing and spreading in the garden enjoy a good home. (read more)

MelindaPlant Exchange Potluck
Healthy and Quick White Bean Dip with Chives. Bohemian Cottage

White Bean Dip with Chive Blossoms

White Bean and Chive Blossom Dip. Bohemian Cottage

This is a simple, tasty and healthy recipe that worked well for a potluck dish.

I recently made this quick and healthy white bean dip with chive blossoms for the Rocky Mountain Gardening Forum’s spring plant exchange and potluck. You just never know at a potluck what kind of diet people have to adhere to, could be vegan, gluten free or vegetarian, you just never know! Not that I try to please everyone, but I do want as many people as possible to enjoy the food I make. So this dip with gluten free chips and veggies seemed like just the thing. Plus I found this cute basket and bowl set that was begging to go to a potluck. (read more)

MelindaWhite Bean Dip with Chive Blossoms
Bohemian Tea Party Decor. Bohemian Cottage

Party Decor~Bohemian Tea Party

The bohemian tea party turned out to be timed just right for Makayla’s birthday. We had a few friends over, all bringing something to contribute to the spread and enjoyed a fun, bohemian themed gathering. The food was an eclectic mix of world flavors, the color scheme was a bright saturated jewel toned rainbow. We took inspiration from Morocco, India, England and Turkey.

Bright Bold Bohemian Tea Party Decor

We went with a mix of bright colors and world flavors for our tea party.

Heirloom Tea Set

Rosie brought her tea set passed down from her grandmother.

We had traditional English tea cups and saucers as well as Moroccan tea cups. We ended up using the Moroccan tea cups for our bubbly cocktails instead! I did attempt to make the traditional Moroccan tea, but it came out way to strong. I will work on perfecting that recipe and technique to share with you here on the blog. (read more)

MelindaParty Decor~Bohemian Tea Party