Big Yard Envy

16 Jun 2011
Our Projects posted by Nan Tofanelli

It was a rainy weekend at Lake Almanor. I could have chosen to go on a walk with the dogs, or helped Rick rake pine needles, or done some spring cleaning. Instead I looked at that 24” high pile of old design magazines and knew that it was my absolute duty to spend the day going through those magazines to cut out any articles or photos or recipes that needed to be attended to before passing them on to my neighbor.

I used to do this task with relish every month after my new editions came in the mail. But lately (who am I kidding, lately being the last five years!) I have procrastinated and not only did I have a huge pile at the lake but also an equally huge pile at home.

I did manage to find two yummy looking recipes to try this summer and also several beautiful photos of backyards to covet. We live on the lake (at Cal Park) and have a very tiny yard to take care of. But visually we have a huge yard that encompasses our views of the lake and our neighbors’ back yards too. Taking care of this size yard is just fine with us but when I see layouts of estate sized lawns and thick forests of green, I do get big yard envy.

What is your dream backyard like?


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Macaroon Me

15 Jun 2011
Our Favorite Places posted by Sara Tofanelli-Barroso

With Tin Roof right next door it's sometimes difficult to be disciplined.  Sandwiches, salads, soups and quiche are displayed for savory treats while cookies, muffins, scones, cake, pie, chocolate and much more are available to satisfy any sweet tooth.  As I like to maintain a paleo lifestyle there's not much that I usually treat myself to... but it's hard to resist their macaroons. 

(Flavors galore including watermelon on the far right).

Made famous by the famous French patissier Ladurée, these small, round cakes, crisp on the outside, smooth and soft in the middle,are made from blanched almond flour, egg whites, and yes, sugar (so while maybe not technically 'paleo' they are gluten-free).

Derived from the Italian amaretti cookie which was supposedly created by Italian monks in the shape of belly buttons and then brought to France in 1533 with the pastry chefs of Catherine de Medici, wife of King Henri II, the macaroon was refined by French Patissiers and quicky became a staple in France.

Made every morning in Ladurée’s “laboratory”, the pastry chefs measure out very precisely the required amounts of almonds, eggs and sugar.  Once cooked and filled, the macaroons are put to one side for 2 days before going on sale, the time it takes to achieve a perfect balance between texture and flavor.

Perfection at it's best... and let's not forget about the strong influence of color!  Working in an interior design business (hopelessly right next door to Tin Roof), we all know how effective the right color can be.  With so many different color and flavor combinations the Tin Roof makes it almost impossible to refuse one of these goodies. 

The best thing however may just be the size... not too big, almost bite size.  Just the perfect amount of sweet on a hot summers day. 

What's your favorite macaroon flavor?

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June…Week Two

12 Jun 2011
Our Projects posted by Nan Tofanelli


Finally, after trying to get together for two years, I met Beth and Russell. Beth had met Sara at our store and asked if I would ever come to Quincy to do a consultation. Sara encouraged Beth to call me. We made several appointments to get together but between her busy schedule, my erratic schedule, weather and whatever else , we kept changing our meetings. Last Friday we finally met at their beautiful ranch in Quincy.

Their 1880 brick house built by the Chandlers (early settlers of that area) was such a delight to visit. A footbridge over a rushing stream guided us to the kitchen door. Lush greenery and blooming rhododendrons and iris were an added bonus to the delightful owners...Beth and Russell. We spent an hour or two talking about a master plan for the changes they wanted to do to their home. I suggested a different arrangement for their living room furniture, we picked some tentative wall colors and I measured windows for possible Roman shades. All in all a very pleasant first visit. We hope to get together soon at our showroom to have them sit in a few sofas and look at area rugs. Thank you Beth and Russell for sharing your beautiful home with us!  



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