Most of you know, recently I attended a private viewing of a few offerings at The Merchandise Mart here in Chicago. The tour was organized through Ms. Jennifer Brough of the company White Good as well as Ms. Blair Loftspring of Vornado Realty Trust. We had the opportunity to visit a few of the LuxeHome boutiques that are open to the public and very inspirational. One in particular was Lefroy Brooks USA.

As I was listening, watching and learning with the other guests I became extremely interested in the companies historical aspects of design. Now mind you, this was before I actually touched their designs and explored them a bit further. Each vignette was well thought out, perfect lighting, nice hand feel, and most of all, exemplified quality. I can’t stress that enough how impressed I was. So this quick post, I hope will inspire a new homeowner or someone who is thinking of remodeling a bath… Drop by, take a look, research a bit a bit online, make a point to explore in person to really find out what they are all about.

Mr. Brooks describes his craft in his bio.

“ Taps will disappear and we will be left holding remote controls or prodding steamy screens. Taps therefore as we know them today may have existed for only around a century and are perhaps destined like the horse and carriage to disappear into the mists of nostalgia.

I have therefore taken on the task of researching this century of taps and selecting the great classics from each decade. From their domestic origins in the late Victorian era through the mechanical angularity of the Edwardians, the curvaceous turn of the century French, the colonial twenties, the Deco thirties, the streamline fifties, the starry sixties to the nineteen seventies when it all seemed to begin again. “

Recently, I have been considering a large undertaking. Finding a property and making it my own. As a good friend told me, “ your own Turkey Hill or Weatherstone, what more could you want? “ Food for thought. In any case when I’m ready to make the leap I’ll have to put a little thought into utilizing a few of Mr. Brooks designs.

Until then, I can always daydream of the possibilities.

Holiday Dinner

We may have not been raised to attend religious services often or at all in my youth, but this never stopped my Mother from making a terrific holiday dinner. Dad brought home ta Ham or Turkey for the day’s celebration from the market in which he worked. Luckily he got the day off to celebrate.

Time off of work was hard to come by in his profession, the last thing he wanted to do was to spend the morning on a church pew. He would much rather be catching up on chores around the house and getting his collection of fishing gear ready for the upcoming season.

Meanwhile my Mother was busy preparing the families favorites. She usually began a few days ahead. What I remember most wasn’t the baked ham along with all of the fixings but what she called “Bunny Bread”. Rarely have I seen her open her copy of Fanny Farmers’ cookbook to double check measurements and directions, somehow she just knew.

Today I find myself recalling these orange scented yeast breads, and have tried a few times to make them for my crew. Never with quite the same results. Perhaps I’m just a bit too nostalgic for high altitude baking. In any case, I have found a recipe that’s pretty close I thought I would share below.

Time to get myself to the market, cut the flowers, set the table and get in the kitchen. Funny, how our fondest memories are focused around sharing time with family, friends and the smells from the kitchen.

Happy Easter.


  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter or margarine
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 4-3/4 to 5-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 envelope Fleischmann's® RapidRise Yeast
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons freshly grated lemon peel
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated orange peel
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon Spice Islands® Pure Vanilla Extract


  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 3 tablespoons butter or margarine
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice

Combine 3 cups flour, sugar, undissolved yeast, salt, lemon peel and orange peel in large mixer bowl.  Heat butter and milk until very warm (120° to 130°F). Gradually stir into flour mixture. Beat 2 minutes at medium speed of electric mixer, scraping bowl occasionally. Add eggs, vanilla and enough remaining flour to make soft dough. On a lightly floured surface, knead the dough until smooth and elastic, about 6 to 8 minutes. Cover; let rise on floured surface for 10 minutes.

 Then form rolls in a simple twist. Cover; let rise in a warm, draft-free place until doubled in size, about 45 minutes.

 Bake bread in a 350° F oven for 25 to 30 minutes, until surface of the bread is golden brown.

To make Glaze, combine all ingredients in a small saucepan over medium heat.  Bring mixture to a boil, maintaining a full boil for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Let cool until thickened. Spoon glaze generously over bread.