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Hostess Gifts

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We are all so busy during the holidays. With all the running around, shopping, baking, cooking, & entertaining, it can get real exhausting. We have made up a sweet list of hostess gifts that any girl would be happy to receive. Wine, chocolates or poinsettia’s are typical hostess gifts that are commonly given and while these gifts are great, we think hostess gifts can be a little more personal and have a wee bit more pizazz.

1. Soap Gift Sets from Lush

You can’t go wrong with Lush products. We love them so much. I know, I know, I have Lush on every single list for gift giving. Trust me, the hostess that receives a gift from Lush will definitely invite you back next year!

2. Specialty Tea from Teavana

Every Host knows that it takes a lot of time and energy to plan a get together let alone get through all of the hustle and bustle of the holiday season. A quality cup of tea is always appreciated. We love these gift sets that come in the beautiful tins that can be reused over and over. You will be affectionately remembered every time she brews a cup of tea long after the holidays are over.

3. Pure Maple Syrup from Blisgourmet

This amazing maple syrup is recognized by top chefs and foodies such as Martha Stewart and Rachel Ray. This is something a little different then the typical bottle of wine or chocolates. Especially great for those that love to cook.

4. Scented Candles from Bath And Body Works

The scented candles from Bath And Body Works are to die for! We can’t pick just one as a favourite. This one is the ultimate holiday scent of rich red apples, green pine and golden cider. One for the hostess and one for me!

5. Lip Balm Sets from Korres

We love, love, love this line from Greece. The body products are the ultimate and so are their lip glosses. Perfect for the long winter to keep lips hydrated and smooth. This limited edition lip glaze set has delicious flavours such as jasmine, pomegranate, raspberry. Made with no parabens or sulphates.

6. Nail Polish Sets from Nails Inc.

Nail polish and nail art is all the rage and who doesn’t love to have their nails all done up? We are amazed at the selection of colours, textures and art that is being done on nails. Can never have too many nail polishes, now can we?

7. Bath and Body Products from Philosophy

We will never get tired of Philosophy products! Ever. The festive gingerbread products add spice to any girl’s day!

8. Designer Fragrance Sets

So many mini sets to choose from during the holidays. A set like this one is perfect with the rollerball fragrance so she can throw it in her purse.

9. Fun Novelty Gifts

Finding really fun personalized gifts are the ultimate if you know the hostess well. For music lovers, a gift like these coasters is different, unique and fun.

Happy Holiday Shopping!

Love, Laura xox

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Recipes

Cranberry Noel Tea Cookies

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We are in full-swing Holiday Baking mode here at Rose & Lea,
and today we are sharing one of our new favorite Christmas cookie recipes…

Cranberry Noel Tea Cookies!

These cookies are very easy to make & you’ll most likely already have all the ingredients needed in your cupboard!

They are so, so delicious, and make the perfect accompaniment to a nice hot cup of tea or coffee.
Perfect for the Holidays!

We filmed a little behind the scenes/tutorial video while making these cookies last night..
Check out what went down!

Note: In the video, we used songs by a band named ‘Carroll‘. They are an amazing psychedelic-pop band based out of Minneapolis.. Do yourself a favour, and check em out!

Band Links:
Carroll Website
Facebook

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Cranberry Noel Tea Cookies Recipe + Directions:
(Yield: Approx. 40 cookies)

Ingredients:
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup chopped pecans
3/4 cup chopped dried cranberries

Directions:

1. In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter & sugar together until light and fluffy.
Add the milk & vanilla, mix until just blended. Add the salt & flour, mix well.
Using a spatula, fold in the pecans and cranberries.

2. Divide batter in half. Roll batter into 2 even sized logs, and wrap in saran wrap.
Chill the dough in the freezer for 30 minutes – 1 hour. (the dough needs to firm up so you can cut the cookies without losing their round shape).

3. After chilling, slice cookies approx. 1/4″ thick.
Place on baking sheets prepared with non-stick cooking spray, or parchment paper.
Bake at 375 degrees F. for 10 minutes.
Do not overbake!

Happy Holiday Baking!
Natasha xo

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Beauty & Cosmetics

Laura’s Fall Wishlist

Even though I prefer Summer, when Fall rolls around and I see all the new Fall fashion, I can’t help but get excited.

Goodbye Summer, Hello Fall!

Here are my top picks for Fall…
(Click here to see Natasha’s Fall Wishlist)

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1. Classic Tall Ugg Boots in Black – $195

Even though Ugg boots aren’t considered ‘fashionable’, and always top ‘most-hated’ fashion trends for women by men, I still love them. They are so comfy and easy to wear.

2. Fit & Flare Knit Dress by Le Chateau – $99

The perfect little black dress – Every girl needs one.. or 3.

3. Hamilton MK Logo Satchel by MICHAEL Michael Kors – $298

Never can have too many purses. Gotta have it!

4. SINCLAIR Steve Madden Boots in Cognac – $229

Love Steve Madden Boots!

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5. Rose Felt Pillow from Chapters – $34

6. Comforter Bubble Bar by Lush – $10

I love absolutely everything at Lush, but this Bubble Bar has always been my favorite.

7. Cardamom Bowl by Crate & Barrel – $85

Did I mention that I have a bowl obsession? This bowl is so purty.

8. Greenwich Grove Tea Set by Kate Spade New York – $59

Did I mention that I also have a teapot obsession?!

What’s on your Fall Wishlist?! Comment & let us know. 🙂

Laura Xo

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Beauty & Cosmetics

Natasha’s Fall Wishlist

It’s no secret that I love Fall & all the goodness which it brings.

I especially love all the Fall fashion.. rich, deep colours, sweaters, gorgeous coats, tights & booties galore!

Here are some of the items I’ve been pining over…

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1. Talula Lambeth Dress from ARITZIA – $60

I adore this dress. It’s so simple, yet looks very flattering & I love the dress paired with the black tights. I want to start wearing more dresses during the Fall & Winter months, and I think that this is the perfect dress to help that transition. It looks comfortable & doesn’t really need any accessories which is always important to me when it comes to clothes. I’m definitely a ‘comfort’ over ‘fashion’ kinda girl. If I’m not comfortable, I’m not wearing it.

2. JONS Ankleboots from ALDO – $100

I’ve never actually owned a pair of ankleboots, but I think these are so cute & versatile.

3. Speed Tight by LULULEMON – $98

I am an avid runner & Vancouverite, so it was really only a matter of time before I mentioned Lululemon! I love, love, LOVE Lululemon. Every product that I have ever bought from Lulu has been excellent quality and lasted for years. I’m a big fan of & swear by the Wunder Under Crops. I’ve been wearing the same pair for the past 2 1/2 years on almost every single run that I go on, & they have been washed many times and yet, they’re still in excellent condition. It’s crazy!

I’ve loved Lululemon since I was 8 years old & received my first-ever lulu outfit for dance class from my Uncle. (At the time, lululemon wasn’t very popular and this was before the whole ‘Scuba Hoodie’ craze). Only my dance teachers at the studio knew about lulu, than gradually over the years, every dancer was sportin’ lulu.

I still have some retro Lululemon bags that are in mint condition from years ago – I’ll have to post them eventually!

If you’re looking for crops or pants for running, I definitely recommend Lululemon. They are pricey, but worth it in the long run.

4. Gil Cross-Body Bag in Ivy by MATT AND NAT – $88

I’m a big fan of cross-body purses. I can’t stand handbags and having to carry them around on my arm all day. Cross-body’s are so much comfier, and I think they look really cute & casual.

I love this Matt & Nat bag. Not only is it gorgeous, it’s also vegan!

About Matt & Nat: (copied from Chapters.ca)

Canadian Matt & Nat leads the way in cruelty-free fashion with their 100% vegan bags and accessories. Their Gil cross-body bag with adjustable straps has two interior zippered compartments, one zippered pocket at the front and an interior slip pocket with logo-embossed cork tag. Polished silver-toned hardware completes the look. 100% recycled nylon lining.

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  Now for the Kitchen & Home portion…

(I swear I didn’t plan the ‘orange’ theme! I’m just drawn to orange) 😉

5. LE CREUSET Tea For One Teapot in Flame – $40

I’ve been drooling over Le Creuset cookware for awhile now. My dream kitchen would have plenty Le Creuset cookware! Great quality & just gorgeous appliances.

6. LE CREUSET Tea Bag Holder in Flame – $10

Cute little tea bag holder to go with the teapot. Love the Flame colour.

7. SILPAT Baking Sheet

I know, I know! I’ve read about how great they are, and every baker must get one. I’m dying to try it out. Is it really worth all the hype? Comment below & let us know!

8. MARTHA STEWART’s Baking Handbook – $33

I love books, and have been wanting to grow my collection of cookbooks. This one came out quite a few years ago but seems to be a classic. I’ve only read good things about it.

What Fall Fashion trends & decor are you guys loving?, What’s on your Wishlist?!

Comment below & let us know! 

XO Natasha

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Recipes

Eggnog & Rum Coffee Cake

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If you only make one dessert this Holiday season – I would definitely recommend this one! This Eggnog & Rum Coffee Cake is like a dream. It is a quick & effortless recipe that is perfect for the holidays and allows you to spend time with your family instead of being in the kitchen! Simply throw the batter together in a pan the night before, and refrigerate overnight. Pop it in the oven the next morning and ta-da! You get a perfectly moist, spongey, light, festive & delicious eggnog coffee cake!

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Eggnog & Rum Coffee Cake

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup eggnog
  • 1 container (8 ounces) sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon spiced rum
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Streusel Topping:

  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

Eggnog Glaze:

  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoon eggnog

Directions:

  1. Grease a 9″x13″ pan with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. In a small bowl, mix all of the Streusel Topping ingredients (sugar, flour, butter, nutmeg) together with a fork until crumbly. Set aside.
  3. In the bowl of your stand mixer, beat together 1 cup sugar & 1/2 cup softened butter on medium speed until light and fluffy.
  4. Beat in 1 cup eggnog, 8 ounces sour cream, 1 teaspoon spiced rum and 2 eggs until well blended. Stir in 2 1/2 cups flour, 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda & 1/2 teaspoon salt.
  5. Spread batter evenly into the pan and sprinkle with the streusel topping. Cover and refrigerate for at least 8 hours.
  6. Preheat oven to 350F. Uncover pan and bake 35-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool for 15 – 20 minutes. Mix the powdered sugar & eggnog to make the Eggnog Glaze and drizzle over cake.

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Batter before refrigerating & baking.

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Enjoy!

Natasha xo

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Recipes

Peanut Butter Smartie Cookies

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I’m usually not a big fan of peanut butter cookies, but these cookies are definitely an exception.

Instead of being hard & crumbly like traditional peanut butter cookies – these cookies are thick, chewy, fluffy & so perfectly peanut-buttery that you won’t want go back to your old recipe. This recipe is also super easy & quick!

If you’re a peanut butter lover, give these bad boys a try!

I used Halloween-coloured Smarties because I just couldn’t resist when I saw all the Halloween candies that are now in stores! (Did I mention, I LOVE Fall? 😉 ) Use whichever chocolates you like (regular smarties, mini M&M’s).

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Peanut Butter Smartie Cookies Ingredients + Directions:

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup creamy peanut butter (I used organic peanut butter)
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 & 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 – 1 & 1/2 cups Smarties

Directions:

  1. In the bowl of your stand mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter & sugars together on medium speed until light & fluffy. Slowly mix in the peanut butter, the egg, than the vanilla. Slowly mix in the baking soda, flour & salt until just combined. Do not overmix. Fold in the Smarties. Cover, and chill dough for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Drop dough by tablespoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets. Flatten out the cookies a bit using the back of a spoon/cup since they won’t spread very much while baking. Bake cookies for only 9-10 minutes. They will look slightly uncooked, but will firm up once they cool. Leave cookies on cookie sheets to cool for at least 10-15 minutes before transferring to a wire rack.

Enjoy! 

Natasha xo

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Recipes

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

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Say hello to my new favorite pumpkin cookie!

These cookies are hands down, the best pumpkin cookies I’ve tried. They taste like a delicious piece of pumpkin pie, but in a cookie! Soft, chewy, pumpkiny goodness.

Many pumpkin cookies have a cake-like consistency, but these cookies do not. The soft & chewy consistency in these cookies is due to the melted butter, and the lack of eggs. The pumpkin in these cookies replace the eggs making them moist & fluffy.

I used a combo of white & milk chocolate chips in these cookies, but you can use whichever chocolate chips you like!

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Chewy Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies Ingredients + Directions:

Ingredients:
(yield: approx. 18-22 cookies)

1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
6 tablespoons pure pumpkin
1 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 and 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
pinch of allspice
1/4 cup white chocolate chips
1/4 cup milk chocolate chips
(Or use 1/2 cup of your preferred kind of chocolate chips)

Directions:

1. In a medium bowl, whisk the melted butter, brown sugar & granulated sugar together until no lumps remain. Add the vanilla extract, and pumpkin & whisk until smooth. Set aside.

2. In a large bowl, mix the flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg & allspice together. Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients & mix ingredients together using a spoon/spatula. Fold in the 1/2 cup chocolate chips making sure they are evenly distributed throughout the dough. Cover, & refrigerate the dough for at least 40 mins. (I chilled my dough overnight). Don’t skip this step – You must chill the dough! 🙂

3. After refrigerating – preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Line or spray 2 large baking sheets with non-stick cooking spray. Roll the dough into balls approx. 1 1/2 – 2 tablespoon In size. If you want your cookies to be flatter, flatten the balls lightly using the back of a spoon/damp bottom of a cup. (I like my cookies to be a bit thicker, so I didn’t flatten them.)  Bake the cookies for only 9-10 minutes. (They will look very underbaked – don’t worry. Once they cool, they will become chewy & perfect!)

4. Leave the cookies on the baking sheets & allow to cool for at least 15 minutes after taking them out of the oven. These cookies need to set after baking, and harden up a bit – so the longer they sit & cool on the baking sheets, the chewier they’ll be!

Notes:

– Store cookies at room temperature for up to a week.
– Recipe slightly adapted from sallysbakingaddiction.

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Happy Baking!
Natasha xo

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