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My Best Beauty Secrets, Plus 1 More


Happy Tuesday!  I hope your week is off to a wonderful start.  

After a recent conversation with girlfriends discussing our best beauty secrets, I, as each of them know, swear by a healthy diet.  Mine mostly consists of veggies, little fish, a green smoothie (I've said it before, it gives me tons of energy), plus at least 60oz of water each day.  Honestly, I don't feel well when I eat unhealthy.  It's not to say that I don't enjoy eating out with my family at one of our favourite restaurants and we all know that I like a cocktail on the weekend.  I'm not willing to give those up nor do I feel that I need to.  Being miserable is not what being healthy is about and that would make me miserable.  I also travel with my Vitamix (yes, I miss it that much).  I've also rediscovered how much I love riding my bike.  I haven't brought it out of the garage for awhile and now I want to ride every day, different trails and greenways throughout the city.  I can't believe how much energy I have and wonder why I took me so long to get back in to a routine.

I stumbled upon this article about Elle Macpherson and she reveals her beauty "tips and tricks."  Tips yes, tricks no.  I don't believe there is anything tricky about it.  Can you believe she is 50 years old?  Amazing.

PHOTO: Elle Macpherson tweeted this photo with this caption: "Super greens... After super swim", July 15, 2014.

Awhile ago, perusing Pinterest I found recipes I wanted to make from the blog, Oh, She Glows.  They looked incredible and tasted as delicious.  Since then, I have found so many more.  I seriously can't get enough nor I have I found any to be less that wonderful.  

Below are my top five recipes:

Many people I know have switched to a gluten-free diet and I try to find great recipes to make when they visit, and to share with them and you.  Although I am not on a gluten-free diet, I don't eat meat and it can be difficult to find entrée's the pickiest carnivore's will approve.

This is a definitely a treat.  I love surprising my kids with special breakfasts like this one and you can easily swap the fruit.  I love raspberries, cherries, and blueberries. 

Easy Vegan and Gluten Free Pancakes (Strawberry Shortcake w/ Whipped Cream) // Oh She Glows

I can't keep my hands out of the cookie jar... and finding myself happily riding a few extra miles to earn these.

Irresistible Chewy Trail Mix Cookies (Vegan + Gluten-Free) Recipe by Oh She Glows | Maypurr

This reminds me of a salad I get from Whole Foods.  It's perfect for lunch or after a long bike ride or barre class.

My kids love this and so do I.  After all, who does't love chocolate?

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough ‘Blizzard’

Another recipe that reminds me of one I pick up at Whole Foods.  This is really good by itself or topped on crackers and hummus.  Hummus is one of my favourite afternoon or late night snacks.

Detox Tabbouleh by Oh She Glows Can't wait to try this ~ it's better than it sounds...especially mixed with hummus on delish crackers as per creator...

A wonderful list of the benefits of fruits and vegetables

For beautiful skin natural remedies

Do you have any beauty tips to share?



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Bonjour Monday, Plus A 17th Century French Château in Provence


Bonjour, mon amis!  I hope you had a wonderful weekend.  I was feeling under the weather most of the weekend but we did get to a movie night on the hill of our local art museum.  They played one of my favourite movie's, Funny Face.  The weather couldn't have been more beautiful for watching this classic and sharing a lovely picnic with good friends.  Although it wasn't their cup of tea, the guys and kids were troopers and still found ways to have fun.  Those ways mostly consisted of ways getting "shhhhh'd" by neighors. 

Paris designer, Pierre Yovanovitch, said he never dreamed of owning a château nor was he interested in owning a country home; however, back in 2009 while flipping through a magazine, he spotted a real estate listing for a 17th century château in Provence.  The listing peaked his curiosity and he decided to take a look... the rest is history.  He knew the moment he laid eyes on the stunning château he was going to buy it.

Living room: The custom-made sofas are covered in a Rogers & Goffigon linen, the circa-1940s armchairs are by Otto Schultz, and the stucco mantel, in the traditional style, is by Joël Puisais, and the custom-made rug is by Holland & Sherry.  The wood sofa was one in five in that style by Axel Einar Hjorth in 1931.

Master bedroom: Yovanovitch designed the master bedroom suite's sofa, made of rough-hewn oak beams and covered in a wool-mohair by Chapas Textiles;  and the rug is by Ateliers Pinton.

Yovanovitch designed the bed and sconces in the master bedroom, the floor lamp is by Gabriella Crespi, and the rug is by Ateliers Pinton.

The office: A circa-1948 light fixture by Paavo Tynell, Hans Wegner table, a 1950s American chair, and the floor is paved with Jura and Hainaut stones.

Staircase: Custom-made ceramic light fixture, and Provençal tiles.

The restoration took three years to complete.  The designer wanted to keep the integrity of the architecture while creating a look that is "today."  For example, he installed gypsum fireplaces with traditional motifs with 20th century furnishings.  One of his best memories was watching the craftsmen replace the colorful roof tiles; "They were so happy, they would sing while working."  If only everyone would love their job as much...

Dining room: The table, chairs, and buffet were designed by Christen Emanuel Kjaer Monberg in 1923 for a Copenhagen home; the light fixture is by Paavo Tynell, and the carved-wood and painted portrait is by Stephan Balkenhol.

Outdoors: The rooftop tiles were refabricated based on original drawings; the garden was designed by Louis Benech, who added linden trees and an orchard.

Entry Hall: The wall sculptures by Richard Nonas (left) and Michel Gouéry in the entrance hall; the circa-1960 cast-iron urn is American, and the floor is paved with Burgundy stone.

Master bath:  The bathtub is by Agape, the fittings and towel rack are by Dornbracht, and the floor is marble.

  Yovanovitch says purchasing the property was vraie folie {crazy} - too large, enormous grounds, and drains endless amounts of money and time; yet, it is perfect for him.  Who wouldn't feel that way?

Wishing you a lovely week!

xoxo, B

If you would like help in creating a home you love, please contact me at

More on this château here.

Bon Weekend, Plus Couture Cocktails


This has been a crazy, busy week catching up on a few projects, taking the kids places, and getting together with friends. The weather has been lovely, 70's during the day and 50's-60's in the evenings.  I can't possibly not get out and not do things. Things won't be slowing down much for the weekend but I hope to get in a little relaxation if only for a little while.

Couture Cocktails

Elderflower and Lemon Sparkling Sipper

1/2 cup elderflower syrup
2 lemons, juiced (about 1/4 cup) 
1 bottle cava, well-chilled 
Raspberries, to garnish
Makes 6 cocktails

Whisk together the elderflower syrup and the lemon juice. Pour about 2 tablespoons of this mixture into a modestly-sized cocktail glass like the ones pictured above, or into a Champagne flute. Pour in enough cava to fill the glass 3/4 full, or to your taste. Swirl gently. Drop in a few raspberries.  Cheers!
What are your plans?
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Photo via here, Cocktail here

Elie Saab Haute Couture Falle 2014


Each season I look forward to Elie Saab's couture show and feature my favourites on the blog.  His designs are synonymous with romance and old Hollywood glamour, as if they appeared straight from a fairytale.  That is what I love most about them.

The back of the runway was illuminated with crystal chandeliers while Saab featured his signature tulle and heavily beaded gowns in a tone on tone and ombré colour palettes of blue, pink, blush, black, grey, and white. 

Do you have a favourite?  Mine would be #1 or #5... it's difficult to choose.



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Wanderlust ~ The Peninsula Paris


After nearly ten years in the making and decades of searching for the perfect property, the Hong Kong-based luxury brand's first European property, the stunningly beautiful Peninsula Paris, is scheduled to open on 1 August, 2014.  Perched at 19 Avenue Kléber, in the heart of the 16th Arrondissement, guests are only steps from Avenue des Champs-Élysées and Arc de Triomphe.

 The grand entrance provides a spectacular arrival where The Peninsula's iconic tradition is repeated twice with soaring curved ceilings, bespoke chandeliers, magnificent drapery, marble floors and contemporary furnishings.

To undertake the restoration, architects and designers chose France’s finest artisans utilizing traditional techniques from the building's façade to interior elements which include marble, mosaics, stone work, and gold leaf refinishing.  The two paintings on the ceiling of the Cigar Lounge - representing music and science and geography respectively - were restored by Cinzia Pasquali, who has restored paintings by Leonardo da Vinci at the Louvre, and also the Palace of Versailles.

The building took only two years to build yet four to restore.  General manager Nicolas Béliard stated in an interview, “We used the same people who worked on heritage projects for the Louvre and the Palace of Versailles to preserve and bring back to life some of the original glory of the building.” “These traditional elements will be fused with public spaces and rooms that are more contemporary in style.”

The 200 luxurious apartment-styled rooms and suites are embellished with high ceilings, meticulously curated artworks, elegant furniture, and marble lined baths with ambient lighting.

The six food and beverage venues include The Lobby, Lili Cantonese, Le Terrasse Kléber, Le Bar Kléber, Le Lounge Kléber, and L’Oiseau Blanc rooftop restaurant.  Le Bar and Le Terrasse feature 360° views over Paris.

   The Peninsula Paris has an interesting history.  In 1864, Russian oligarch Count Basilewsky, in love with the Château de Versailles, fulfilled his wish to build a Parisian castle of his own in the late 19th century belle époque Haussman building.  After him, the deposed former Queen of Spain, Isabella II, lived an eventful life full of conspiracies and rumours in the Palais, until 1904.

 In 1908, one of Paris' most luxurious “grands hotels”, the Hotel Majestic, opened it's doors by entrepreneur Leonard Tauber.  Innovative from the outset and impressive with its signature voluminous public spaces, The Majestic quickly became celebrated in Paris and overseas for its beauty, glamour, and the spectacular events held there.  
Two bits of history ~ The Paris Peace Accords, negotiated by Henry Kissinger and bringing the Vietnam War to a close, were signed in 1973 in the salon which is today Le Bar Kléber.  Also, George Gershwin wrote, ‘An American in Paris’ while staying there.

Visiting this grand hotel is on my list of things to do on my next trip to Paris!



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