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I'm Nicole. I am a wife, mother, shop owner on Mackinac Island, and lover of handmade. The little things and little moments inspire me. Follow me on my blog as I write about shop news, my travels, island life and motherhood.
Nicole
xo.

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little luxuries

Damn Delicious

Shot from Damn Delicious 

Today I’m sharing Andrew’s favorite diner that I make! It doesn’t take too long, and takes great! This recipe is from Damn Delicious, who has so many great recipes!
Here is her Ranch Cheddar Chicken:
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1 (1-ounce) package Ranch Seasoning and Salad Dressing Mix
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/3 cup Panko
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Lightly oil a 9×13 baking dish or coat with nonstick spray.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together mayonnaise, cheese, Ranch Seasoning and garlic.
  3. Season chicken thighs with salt and pepper, to taste. Place chicken in a single layer onto the prepared baking dish and top with mayonnaise mixture. Sprinkle with Panko.
  4. Place into oven and cook until completely cooked through and golden brown on top, reaching an internal temperature of 175 degrees F, about 25-30 minutes.
  5. Serve immediately, garnished with parsley, if desired.

I can’t wait to hear what you think about this easy and delicious recipe!

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I can’t believe that we are almost halfway through the month of June!
It’s time to start sampling new summer salad recipes for summer get togethers, family picnics and dinners outside! Along the way, I found this salad that is a fan favorite already! I found it on Julie’s Eats & Treats and made some minor adjustments to make it my own!
Dressing:
3/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1/4 cup mayonnaise
2 Tablespoons yellow mustard
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup sugar
2 Tablespoon chopped onion
3/4 teaspoon poppy seeds
Salad:
12 cups of leafy greens
9 oz. corn chips
1 cup bacon bits
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
8 oz. dried cranberries
It’s so simple! Make the dressing by combining all of the ingredients in the bender. Then, create the salad by placing it all in a serving bowl! Add the corn chips directly before serving so they stay fresh!
I know I’ll be taking this to many summer picnics! I hope you enjoy it!
Xo,
Nicole
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What day is it?? This seems to be the common question over the last two months. We have moved back to Mackinac full-time again, and, a little earlier since the boys are doing school from home. Normally, the island would be coming alive right now for the 2020 season. Unfortunately, this season is going to be very different. I am on my second week being back in the store getting it ready to reopen (hopefully soon!) and it feels so good to be back in the store! We ARE OPEN for curbside pick up for local residents and WE ARE shipping with a special $5 shipping rate and free shipping over $49!!
Mackinac IslandLittle Luxuries FREE Shipping
When we are on Mackinac Island our little family loves taking walks after dinner, either through town, along the board walk or to Grand Hotel and the West Bluff. This spring, our walks have been extremely quiet and, honestly, it's VERY weird to me. Not seeing the lights on at Grand Hotel or the flags flying, only seeing 2-3 people on our entire walk, and seeing CLOSED signs on almost every business along Main Street - it's so scary.  It has definitely been challenging trying to stay positive once we moved back to the island. We are so used to experiencing a normal, busy Mackinac Island season to now a lonely, quiet island. This time has made me realize how important small businesses are. Of course I know how important they are to our economy, but through all of this small businesses are the heart of small towns. The past 12 years running my shops, never did I ever think we would be experiencing something like this. However, it has had it's positives. Such as, making me think out of the box, ordering more carefully, and digging deeper to make my businesses work. I do believe that small businesses are going to get more support than ever right now and after this pandemic. We will get through this! Our world is realizing how important independent businesses are to our economy.
Mackinac Island, along with other tourist towns will have a later start than normal, and I really hope many of you can still make a trip to our beautiful island this season. If you cannot, follow my Instagram stories so you can feel like you are on Mackinac. I am trying my best to show each of you your favorite place(s) and what's behind our store doors.
Mackinac Island WalksMackinac Island Walks
Fun New Things: 
Our Island Girl Collection items are arriving the end of this month!! I can't wait to show you what's new!! 
Who would have thought we would be styling ourselves with handmade masks?! Families are purchasing patterned masks and supporting local makers. We are carrying 4 different makers' masks in the shops. Check them out online! They are selling quickly!
Little Luxuries Face Masks
Family Time On Mackinac During Stay-at-Home Time: 
You are probably thinking what are we doing to keep busy on Mackinac Island with only the grocery store open and the Mustang for take-out. With three little boys it is a little challenging, especially with the weather not being in our advantage right now.  We are spending time in our backyard, enjoying walks, venturing out to Wawashkamo Golf Course, finding rocks along the shore, family face-timing, board game nights, science projects, eating more, and just holding each other tighter more.
Doud Boys 
I know this isn't easy for anyone. This will pass and IT WILL get better eventually. Be patient, stay positive and don't be so hard on yourself. Staying in your pjs all day and binge watching Netflix IS okay :) 
Be well, 
Nicole
xo
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Please enjoy these free printable coloring page of Doud's Market, Little Luxuries and Mackinac Island designed by Katie Doucette, a Michigan designer. 
To download the coloring sheets, click here.

Doud's Market Coloring Sheet

Little Luxuries Coloring Sheet

Mackinac Island Coloring Sheet

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French Toast Bake

This year, like everyone else, we will just be celebrating Easter as a small family, without our parents. While the boys will miss their grandparents, we will be sure to spend time FaceTiming our family, so that it’s almost like we are all together.

I want to do everything I can to make the day as special as possible for our family. I found this French Toast Bake that I know everyone will love and I’m so excited to have it for Easter breakfast this year!

The secret is, you have to make it the night before! If you know you are going to want to make this, just make sure you prepare on Saturday night before bed!

Ingredients:

1 loaf of sourdough bread*

8 eggs

2 cups of milk

1/2 cup of heavy cream

3/4 cup of sugar

2 tablespoons of vanilla

*If you don’t have sourdough bread, try another bread like brioche, challah, pullman or French bread! The trick is, you don’t want the bread to get soaked and mushy from the eggs!

Topping:

1/2 cup of flour

1/2 cup of brown sugar

1 teaspoon of cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon or salt

1/2 cup of cold butter, cut into pieces

  1. Cut the loaf of bread into cubes and put in a greased 9 X 13 pan.

  2. Mix together the eggs, milk, cream, sugar and vanilla. Pour over the bread.

  3. Cover and place in the fridge to settle overnight!

  4. Mix together the remaining topping ingredients. Add the butter until it has formed a crumbly mix and store overnight in a container.

  5. In the morning, put the topping on the bread / egg mixture.

  6. Bake at 350 for 45 minutes.

  7. Enjoy! We’ll probably add some fresh fruit to the side with orange juice for the boys and tea for me! 

For the complete recipe and more details, visit: https://lilluna.com/french-toast-bake/.  Picture credit to Lil Luna. 

I hope that you have a very Happy Easter weekend. Tell me, what are you making this weekend for your family? 

Xo Nicole 

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