Happy Hearts Day, Friends!

From my home to yours. Sending you extra hugs and good energy on Valentine’s day.

(A cat that knows a thing or two about being happy and loved is our “Smurfie”. She is a former shelter cat and she brings tremendous joy to our household. And yes she has a pretty, heart shaped nose!).

lovelovelove oxox

Photo: Via Splendid Willow

Written by Splendid Willow in: Holidays & Celebrations |


It’s A Wrap. Happy, Happy To You All!


To All Of My Friends/Readers/Partners/Customers

Thank you all for the wonderful energy you have given me throughout the year. I wouldn’t be doing this if it wasn’t for you. I treasure each and every one of you. I always say that I have the BEST group of supporters and friends. Thank you, thank you.

I am going to take a good winter break, recharge my batteries and only focus on my family. I will be back again Tuesday, January 3rd, 2012!
Love to you and yours,
Image no. 1 via Skona Hem.

Written by Splendid Willow in: Holidays & Celebrations |


My Candy Store Is Now Open!

Every winter holiday season we turn our old, Swedish secretaire into a treat cabinet, which my children officially have dubbed “The Candy Store”. We fill the cabinet with all kinds of sweets and let me tell you that there is a constant flow of family members and guests heading in that direction of the house! Plates and bowls are frequently being filled up!

I personally love this tradition. The kids (and hubby!) get so excited every year. As of Dec. 18th (my oldest daughter’s birthday – the big 10!) – “The Candy Store Is Officially Open! Even our spoiled cat Charlie, wants to be part of the fun!

An absolute must have in our store, are chocolates from Brugge Chocolates. It does not get much better than that, folks. Absolutely top notch European style chocolates made locally here in Seattle. I can’t rave enough about this brand – and once you learn about it, you almost want to keep it a secret! Remember that you learned about Brugge Chocolates here first!

Brugge Chocolates was opened in February 2010 by owner and head chocolatier, Susan Walukiewicz. I really like her. After retiring from a career at Microsoft (kind of envious of here career switch…), Susan attended the Barry Callebaut Chicago Chocolate Academy, where she trained with Belgian, French and Canadian chocolatiers, always with an emphasis on artisan chocolates and confections.

Here are a few pieces I just picked up. More will be added next week – I want it all super fresh. ( I gave myself a medal for not taking even the tiniest of nibbles).

…with real gold flakes…

Some other Holiday touches at our house. You all know that I like to keep things simple. But for being a fairly modern gal, it sometimes even surprise myself  that I am so attached to a more old feel, rustic Christmas. I feel it has such a good, friendly vibe.

The Christmas tree (with its forest theme) is up. Here seen from my office.

Hubby wanted more red in the tree (The only time he has an opinion about colors, is when the tree is to get some decor. What is that all about?!) – so I added red apples to the mix.

The kids decorated their village.

Today you will find me linking to these lovely and creative blogs: Cottage & Vine, Savvy Southern Style, Between Naps On The Porch, Dittle Dattle & DIY Home Sweet Home. Thank you for the fun parties, ladies!

And if you are looking for some last minute gifts, meet me over at my close & stylish friend Manvi’s blog Mochatini, where I have listed a few things I want for myself!

Happy New Week!

Written by Splendid Willow in: Holidays & Celebrations,My Home | Tags: ,


My New Christmas Tree Decorations

I was purring like a cat when I saw this image just yesterday over at my good friend Tina’s blog. This is exactly the look I am going for on our Christmas tree!  A rustic theme celebrating family and mother nature!

I have never had any glitzy, shiny red and green ornaments in my tree (not even when I grew up). I guess I am more used to a simple, quiet, Swedish look. But not until  recently did I come up with a theme close to my heart. We are huge animal lovers at our house and we already have quite a few adorable animal ornaments but this year I am tying everything together with colors and adding some new, forest themed tree ornaments. Here is a sample of what I have been collecting and what is going on the tree.

Adorable mushrooms. A bought a whole bunch — love them!

Bird houses, acorns and more animals.

 Light green berry branches (just like in the top picture!).

Jute reindeer (simple and so cute).

Burlap ribbon.

And for the kids I created my own simple little ornaments that I hope they will appreciate for a long time to come. I simply wrote their initials (I used stencils) on some burlap fabric and put them in rustic frames. I also placed some b/w baby pictures in frames and wrote love testiments on the back.

Oh, and hubby always refers to our three kids as “squirrels”. Found some cute ones that are also going on the tree!

I really enjoy this look. It suits us and I know that it will be a very loving tree!

Hugs to you all.

Image no. 1 via Komma Hem.


Written by Splendid Willow in: Holidays & Celebrations,My Home | Tags:


I Go Nuts For These Winter Holiday Decorations


Happy New Week Friends! After spending almost a week in sunny California and enjoying quality time with close family and friends over Thanksgiving, it is now on to the next adventure — Winter Holidays Galore. This is my favorite time of the year — I love the traditions we have created in my own home, the smells, the colors and all the social activity. It can be a very stressful time of the year but I try very hard to not overdo it and instead really focus on simplicity and full enjoyment. (I am really starting to get too old for stress!).

Here are some holiday decoration images I have saved and feel are oh so inspirational.

My favorite is this one. Three simple and different wreaths on a peg board. Stunning with a capital S.

Putting some greenery in my antique empire candle fixture. Must try sometime!

Green wreaths in the windows with white ribbons. Simple is beautiful.

A cluster of candle sticks of different heights. Nice.

Just a tad of greenery on that white table cloth in the dining room. Add some candles and simple white flowers. Not much else is needed.

I like pine cones and pine cone trees. I feel they go hand in hand with the season.

Simple winter holiday cards attached to a long jute string with wooden clothes pins.

And a wreath made with black and white photos of close family members. How perfect for story telling and going down memory lane.

And why do I feel that this leather bag really belongs under the green tree? Also perfect for really young ones to ride on!

If I can only have one flower this time of the year, it will be the Hyacinth. I love everything about this fragrant flowering plant which brings back wonderful childhood memories from Sweden. You will find it in just about every Swedish home during Christmas. Note: These white mugs at Ikea work great as plant holders. Just put some moss on top and tie a red string around the mug. Do I have to say again that simple is beautiful!

If you are interested and if you have a moment, hop over to my store Splendid Willow Avenue, where more toys have been added. Yep, for those of you who have been asking — the Danish Reindeer is now listed!

 Don’t forget to take advantage of my 15% off on all merchandise in my store as seen in the latest issue of House Of Fifty. Simply use the code livesplendid15 at checkout.  (And don’t forget that the code also works over at the wonderful store Live Like You). The offer expires December 10th. 2011.

Warm hugs to you all.


Images: No. 1, via Splendid Willow, no. 2, 7, 8 and 9 via Country Living, no. 3, 4, 5, 6 and 10 via Skona Hem and no. 11 via Livet Hemma.

Written by Splendid Willow in: Holidays & Celebrations,I Go Nuts For |

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