Love and Olive Oil

Picture-Perfect Roast Chicken and a Peek Inside our Home

Loft Dining Room Art Wall

Thanks to all y’all’s input on our art dilemma, we finally made a decision and went with Option 1. The combination of print and pattern and color turned out to be simply perfect.

And as great as the art looked in my mockup, it looks even better in person.

Loft Dining Room Art Wall

It feels so good to have some art on the walls again, like someone actually lives here now and didn’t just move in days before. And we couldn’t be happier with our choices!

Loft Dining Room Art Wall

I realized it’d been years since I’d shared any home pictures, and the ones I had were seriously outdated. Our under-the-spiral-stair storage was still a flimsy little metal thing from the second hand store (we’ve since built a custom shelving unit with light wood and metal rods, see it in the kitchen photo below), nor had we installed our semi-built-in storage that spans the living room wall. Really, the only things that haven’t changed in the 7 years that we’ve lived here are the pot rack, the lime green mixer, and the Hatch Showprint posters on the wall.

Oh, and Kalypso. She’s still as chubby as ever.

Our Home Loft Living Room with Cat Shelves!

The living room built-ins (which is actually an IKEA Besta base to which we added a new top and base pieces to make it look more built-in) were the only way I could imagine to fit all my props into our limited space.

But what do I do now that it’s full?


And no, we didn’t forget to ‘stage’ those floating shelves above the TV. The only decorative objects that grace those shelves are of the furry variety. Anything else that happens to be sitting there will be promptly relocated to the floor.

Loft Dining Room Art Wall

These cats. They run our lives, I tell you.

Our Home - Loft Living Small Kitchen

Our kitchen. While we’re thankful for ample counterspace, the cabinet space is severely limited. Hence the need for all the extra storage.

We’re toying with the idea of painting the cabinets. Light gray, perhaps? I’d love white, but seeing as how much white we’ve already got going on I think it might be a bit excessive. What do you think? My dream would also be to replace the counters with a single level (no more raised bar) and a matte-finish countertop. I’m sick of this shiny stuff.

Our Home Loft Living Room

The faux-hide rug is our newest addition, replacing the old multi-colored Flor tiles we had there before. Dare I say our taste is maturing? The rug, anyhow, was so opposite of our typical style that I almost didn’t get it. But after some rotating and careful placement under the gray sofa, it’s starting to grow on us. I love how the organic shape breaks up all of the squares in the room (our old rug was ALL squares, I was longing for some curves!)

A new sofa is probably on the horizon, as what these photos don’t show (hello clever blanket placement) is the number our cats have done to the back corners of the sofa.

Here’s a million dollar idea for you: a sofa with refillable cat scratchers embedded into the corners. Then they can scratch to their heart’s content and when it gets gross and stringy, you just pop in a fresh post.

Brilliant, I tell you!

Picture-Perfect Roast Chicken Recipe

I wasn’t kidding when I said we were going to make that chicken recipe (I mean, if it’s on your wall you better as heck be able to vouch for it). It was our Christmas dinner, in fact! While the recipe is lacking a few key details (artistic license, ahem), I’ve filled them in for you below.

I loved cooking the chicken in the cast-iron skillet, so much more manageable than a giant roasting pan (save that one for the turkeys). Why didn’t I think of that before?

Perfect Roasted Chicken

Did you make this recipe?


  • 1 whole chicken
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Preheat to 500 degrees F. Place a 10 or 12-inch cast iron skillet on a rack positioned in the lower third of your oven until hot.
  2. Rub the chiken all over with olive oil, then sprinkle generously with salt and pepper.
  3. Carefully place the chicken, breast side up, in the hot skillet and return to oven. Roast for 15 minutes, then reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F. Continue to roast until chicken is golden brown, and a thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the thigh registers 165 degrees F (ours took about another 45 minutes for a 6 pound bird; depending on the size of your chicken, I’d recommend checking the temperature after about 30 minutes to see where you’re at).
  4. Transfer the chicken to a platter, tipping the chicken to let the juices flow out into the pan before moving it. Let rest for at least 15 minutes before carving and serving.

Recipe from Minted artist Elliot Stokes

All images and text © / Love & Olive Oil

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Leave a Comment below or share a photo and tag me on Instagram with the hashtag #loveandoliveoil.

Loft Dining Room Art Wall

I have to say, getting a box with your art already framed and ready to hang on the wall is downright convenient. Custom framing is complicated and expensive and just a hassle overall.

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  1. I would spend it on Alex Elko prints…love them!

  2. I would buy stationery and graduation announcements. I also tweeted @KaylaAtlremix

  3. I subscribe too!

  4. Vegetable prints for my kitchen!

  5. I would also get some of the business cards.  I just started a new job, and would love to get some of the more creative cards

  6. I would get some of the awesome wall art, similar to the ones featured in your post!

  7. If I won I would love to get the Cousins wall print! 

  8. I would love to purchase some artwork.

  9. I would get save the dates for my wedding this year!

  10. I subscribe. :)

  11. I love the photos and illustrations. I’d definitely have to buy Planetary Neighbors by GeekInk Design.

  12. I LOVE their gold foil prints – I would order the state of Wisconsin!

  13. I am following you and minted on instagram.

  14. Just tweeted. @krdeal21

  15. I just subscribed by email.

  16. I was just looking at bridal shower invitations for my sister’s wedding yesterday on minted. This would be perfect for the shower and bachelorette party.

  17. Following both insta accounts @ellen.agyare

  18. I follow you and minted on instagram via  sbroughton61

  19. I follow you and minted with my twitter via @susanbroughton8   Here is the link to the tweet about the giveaway :

  20. I follow you via email!  Love your blog you have some really great recipes!

  21. If I won I would like to get some really nice Christmas cards for the next holiday season

  22. I subscribe by email.

  23. I love Minted’s selection of children’s art- I would choose one of those- maybe the elephant print!

  24. I receive your emails……and I love them.  Thank you!

  25. I would go crazy buying artwork for my home.

  26. Followed on Twitter and tweeted! @annabelleagyare

  27. I am already subscribed :)

  28. Thanks for the giveaway!!!! I would by some art print or home décor.

  29. I want some cute art that’s mostly painted words. Make sense? I could spend hours looking on Minted.
    Question for YOU: Where did you get your cowhide rug?! I have been looking for one for our bedroom “seating area” (that has no seats) and I was going to get one from World Market…but didn’t want to commit. 

  30. i subscribe to your blog

  31. I really like the Float print, though there are a bunch of other prints I love as well

  32. Follow on twitter and tweeted about giveaway 

  33. Follow on instagram as   alinapicazo

  34. Already an email subscriber.

  35. I’m an email subscriber. 

  36. Follow both on twitter and tweeted as  @connsean71

  37. We’re in need of some”Save the Dates” and invitations for our upcoming wedding, so this is the most perfect giveaway ever! :)

  38. Follow both on instagram as   seanrconn

  39. I would get some Thank You cards and some much needed art work for my home office, 

  40. I’d love to get some of their Valentine’s Day party decorations. They adorable. 

  41. I subscribed via email

  42. I would buy the Heart Snapshot Mix!

  43. I would definitely go for the art! They have some great stuff!!

  44. I love simple yet amazing chicken recipes and this one looks fantastic!!!

  45. I would put the money towards a piece of real art for our bedroom!

  46. I definitely need art on my walls!  That’s where I would spend it if I was fortunate enough to win a gift card to Minted :-)

  47. I subscribe :)

  48. I seriously pent hours looking at Minted’ art prints the other night!  They are stunning! If I won, I would get a bunch of prints and make a gallery wall!

  49. I’d buy the “Life on Mars” pic and some minnow fabric for our nautical room.

  50. I think that the art prints are beautiful.  I liked “where water flows”

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