Happy Holidays! A Few of My Favorite Things for the Home and a Good Life

A couple of weeks ago I took my children to see The Sound of Music Sing-a-long at The Castro Theatre in San Francisco. It was beyond fantastic. I felt like a child, chiming in joyfully to tunes my mother had taught me, and I thought about how much she would have loved doing that with her grandkids.

Puritan that she was however, my mother would have been horrified that I was exposing my children to the Castro community’s culture. While the highlight of my experience was seeing the Nanny kiss the Captain, my son and his friend would definitely tell you that seeing the naked guy on the street outside the theater (twice!) was the highlight of their experience.

I delight in knowing that my kids have parents who teach them to embrace all lifestyles and cultures—which is very contrary to my own upbringing.

This holiday season has been a growth-promoting mix of keeping the interior design machine running smoothly and staying committed to my investment in my own personal happiness. While happiness is a quality that naturally comes from self-actualization, there are certain objects and items—touchstones—that also inspire and increase happiness, just by being in my environment, or my being in theirs; “things” that remind me to slow down and enjoy the blessed life I am living.

Taking a tip from Julie Andrews, here are a few of my own Favorite Things:

Flowers: Peonies—pink, or white with just a little pink around the edges

Coffee: Cole Coffee‘s Fair Trade Sumatra

Tea: Teance’s Jasmine Green, in the afternoon

Lamps: Christopher Spitzmiller

Soap: Savon de Marseille

Artist: Famous—Rothko

Artist: Famous someday—Tracey Kessler

Paint Color Staple: Benjamin Moore Pashmina from the Aura Collection (kitchen by Martha Stewart)

Favorite Design Trick: Wallpaper for the master bedroom anchor wall

Healthy Breakfast: Green Smoothie (email me for the recipe!)

Decadent Breakfast: La Farine‘s morning bun and poached eggs

Fireplace Wood: Birch logs for decorating, Recycled-waxed-cardboard logs for burning

Mattress: McRoskey

Fabric Line: Quadrille China Seas (contact me to view the collection)

Towels: Restoration Hardware

Ice Cream: Coffee anything

Activity: Morning alone time to meditate, journal and process, or a long hike in the hills by my house

Blog: Danielle LaPorte’s White Hot Truth


I’d love to hear what your favorite things are too! Please post your comments below.

(And congratulations to Sharon Wright, our winner of two hours of design time—for sharing what she is grateful for in my Thanksgiving blog post. Thank you, Sharon, and everyone who posted; it was a delight to read your responses.)

December 24th, 2011|Designer Tips, Heart Talk|


  1. Jonathan December 24, 2011 at 1:26 pm - Reply

    Mmmm La Farine and all that is good living here in the Bay Area! What a great post. Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

  2. Gabrielle Fishman December 26, 2011 at 12:00 pm - Reply

    I love peonies, too. They are so lush and fat. And I have you to thank for the introduction to Danielle LaPorte. Here’s to a full and prosperous 2012!

  3. Angie McLane December 27, 2011 at 9:02 am - Reply

    Peonies are lovely, but my very favorite flowers are calla lilies!
    And my favorite tea is without a doubt, chamomile, and this cannot be helped, since a bottle full of it was my very first meal ever! Mmmmh!
    Happy Holidays!

  4. Danette January 12, 2012 at 5:01 pm - Reply

    Those are all wonderful things to have as favs……and I got some good ideas!

    • Laura Martin Bovard January 29, 2012 at 5:17 pm - Reply

      Thank you Danette…I’m always looking for more favorites to add if you have any you’d like to share.

  5. […] you, dear readers who have not yet met me in person (or have yet not read my blog posts about green smoothies, perfectionism and meditative spaces), may be […]

  6. […] post is inspired by Danielle LaPorte, whom I have mentioned before here as one of the masters who has impacted my life in dramatic ways. Reading her posts inspires me to […]

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