Monthly Archives

March 2016

Aesthetic

Kentucky Spring

March 30, 2016

It’s really trying to be springtime here in the Chicago area but it’s just not.

Soon enough. Maybe.

This weekend, when I went to visit my family, I took some photos of what spring looked like growing up.

I know Chicago can get there, but it just takes SO. MUCH. LONGER.

I want all the magnolia blossoms right now.

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I miss all the prettiness. What is your favorite part about spring?

Recipes

Little Bunny Foo Foo

March 29, 2016

Happy belated Easter!

While today’s post may not be super relevant for this year anymore (unless just doing a springtime activity) I’m going to share it with you anyway.

Here’s a little recipe on how to make springtime bunny crescent rolls.

What you need:

-2 cans of crescent rolls

-Chocolate chips or raisins

-One egg

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 F
  2. Open the crescent roll containers and separate the pieces into triangles.
  3. Make each triangle into a rope snake.
  4. Rip off a small piece and form into a ball. Set aside.
  5. Curl the rope snake to make a six (but like a filled in six).
  6. Take a small knife and cut the top of the six about a centimeter. (Bunny ears)

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7. Add the ball (bunny tail) to the six.

8. Crack your egg and whisk it. Then using a basting brush, add a little egg mixture onto your shape.

9. Place a raisin or chocolate chip where the bunny eye would be.

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10. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden.

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Bahhahah. We tried. We really did. I should mention they end up looking like um bunny snails. Yep. Snail bunnies.

Authentic

Words That Matter

March 25, 2016

My family lost our very special neighbor this week. She was ninety-four years old and just quite the lady. I remember walking over to her house during high school and sitting down while she told me about being a principal during school desegregation in Louisville. She told me about her experience and about what she had learned from it. She had an incredible ability to reflect and to give through her reflections.

This lady lived her life consistent with being Jesus to others. She loved others and loved them well. She fed the groundhog that appeared in her backyard. Up until a few years ago, she pulled her own trashcan up from the bottom of her driveway…which was a hill. What a woman.

I will miss seeing her when I go to visit but I am so thankful that we moved next door to such an incredible person.

With all of this in mind, I thought I’d share some special words from this sweet lady and some from other mentors that have passed. My hope is that they make you think like they made me think.

“Just keep moving honey. No one can make you stop.”

From a teacher that passed:

“Mean what you say, and say what you mean, but don’t say it mean.”

From a holocaust survivor:

“Be a bandaid to the world. Don’t ever forget.”

From a college friend now gone:

“HEYYYY!!!!!”- usually accompanied by a hug and genuine grin.

From a grandma I married into:

“That is just the best!”- Always, always having a positive message about life and loving others.

 

You all. I have been incredibly lucky to have such wonderful people in my life. To have people that are so worth remembering and that their words have stuck with me for years is incredible. I hope that this gives you a little opportunity to remember the people and the words that have impacted your life.

And if you will…say a little thank you for the people that have loved you, believed in you, and really cared about you.

Aesthetic

Wallpaper That Wows

March 24, 2016

Wallpaper used to be one of those things that kind of dated a home. I still have flashbacks of going to people’s homes and seeing mallard ducks or fish lining the bathroom.

Wallpaper has made a big comeback though. The styles and patterns can be used in moderation to make “blah” spaces look interesting and fun.

Here are some top wallpaper picks that I’d use for an office nook, powder room, or heck even a walk-in closet.

botannical wallpaper

Prussian Blue Botanical

I like that the pattern above is larger but still subtle.

wallpaper ray

Gray Anthro Wallpaper

The above would play well as a neutral base to layer upon. It adds a little dimensionality to a space.

paris wallpaper

Parisian Wallpaper

How cute would this Parisian wallpaper be in a little girl’s room. So chic.

anthro paper

Anthro Wallpaper

I just think this one is pretty. It may be better as say a notebook cover than on a main wall, but if you put it in a kid’s room or laundry room, then it could be a perfect way to liven up a space.

Recipes

In Honor of March Madness… A Substitution

March 23, 2016

It’s no secret in our household that we are not sports people. Like not even remotely. People will start talking about professional teams and a bit of my soul dies. I just have no interest at all in most sports. Actually, let me clarify- I have no interest in football. I applaud the athletes, but I don’t have it in me to watch it. The Super Bowl- meh. Sorry, sorry, I know how non-American that sounds.

I do however love March Madness.

I’m no expert on all of the teams, but I know enough to fill out a bracket and make some pretty educated guesses about which teams will make it to the elite eight or final four or gasp- win it all.

So in honor of March Madness and Kentucky’s participation in it- well not now but you know, I am presenting a little Kentucky inspired recipe.

Bourbon Chocolate Chip Banana Bread or in this case Gluten Free Bourbon Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

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This recipe originally came from Miss Molly Vintage . The blog is awesome and run by a gal named Emily. There’s also an associated shop which sells so many fun and just unique Kentucky-inspired pieces. Check it out!!!

All that to say, this recipe comes from that great sight and I’m just here to share some simple Gluten Free substitutions- like the basketball pun?

To not take away from the original recipe’s step-by-step, I’m going to refer you to the original recipe on Miss Molly’s blog here.

However for GF bread here is your ingredient list:

-2 cups GF baking flour (a lot of local GF bakeries sell this or WholeFoods)

-3 tsp baking powder

-½ tsp salt

-½ cup butter, softened

-1 cup sugar

-2 large eggs

-3 mashed ripe bananas

-1 tsp lemon juice

-3 tbsp bourbon (or you know more if you are feeling feisty)

-2 cups chocolate chips (the original called for milk chocolate, I used dark as a preference thing)

For a step-by-step, follow the link, but the basics are mix your dry ingredients, separately mix your sugar butter- then add in rest of wet ingredients to sugar/butter mix, add dry ingredients to wet mix, fold in chocolate chips. Bake.

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It was a super easy process and I cannot recommend this recipe more. Even with the GF substitution it tastes great!

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What recipes would you recommend that give a taste of your hometown or state?

 

Adventure Aesthetic

San Francisco Weekend

March 22, 2016

The nice thing about living far away from most of my college and high school pals is that I have a lot of great places to travel too. The bummer is that I can’t see these pals more often.

A few weekends ago, my husband was off at a bachelor weekend in Colorado. Knowing I’d be alone for the weekend, I found an cheap flight out to San Francisco to visit my best buddy from grade school- we’ve been friends for that long!

My pal moved out to San Francisco this past year to get her masters in biochemistry. She is living the San Francisco life and seems to really enjoy the city’s vibe. It was so nice of her t be my guide and hostess for 48 hours. The fact that she still likes me afterwards is amazing!!

While I wanted to take a lot of fantastic photos recapping my trip, it rained pretty much the entire weekend. During brief dry spells, I managed to snag a couple of photos of the things we saw.

We snuck up to the Marin Headlands and got the quintessential Golden Gate Bridge photo(s).

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We made it past the houses in the background of the Full House intro.

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Again…it was pouring so car photo.

We went down to the Fisherman’s Wharf to see the sea lions and to walk down to the Boudin Bakery to have a snack.

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The one scratching its nose…I can’t even. So cute.

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Alcatraz in the distance.

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We went down the curvy Lombard Street while listening to old school rap.

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We saw some cool places and just great views.

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Though I didn’t get a photo of everything while there, we did see a lot of fantastic places and things. Even though it was extraordinarily rainy- I mean drenched clothes raining- I could still tell San Francisco is beautiful. It is no wonder it costs a fortune to live there because there are just sights on sights.

Besides what is pictured, I was able to meet my pal’s lab friends, go grab a drink with them, and enjoy a lot of meals with her. I am so glad I have a pal like her who will let me stay with her for that amount of time with no breaks and still treats me kindly. She is selfless in that way and I couldn’t appreciate her more!

 

Amusement

Movie Review: Sisters

March 21, 2016

You all. I rarely talk about current movies. It’s not that I haven’t seen any, it’s that I rarely like any. I miss the days of lighthearted movies that occurred in the nineties and early two-thousands. Movies can be such downers these days. So when I offer up a movie I like- it means I genuinely like it and would recommend it.

Sisters

Source

The most recent movie to recommend: Sisters.

I know. I am a solid three months behind in seeing this, but it just made its way to Apple movies.

If you haven’t seen Sisters please do. Not around kids mind you, but for sure watch it. I’ve already shared my love for Amy Poehler, but I also super enjoy Tina Fey. The combo makes for a good time.

The nice thing about this movie is that it has both blatant humor and more subtle humor that you have to know the allusions to to fully get. Once you do understand the humor, it’s even more chuckle worthy. It also has a happy ending. This is a huge selling point in my mind. I LIKE happy endings- and so what- that’s the enjoyment factor of the movie.

Sisters. Go see it. If you have a sister, watch it together.

Smart Buys

Recent Purchase Reviews

March 18, 2016

As I started my internship, I realized I needed to update my wardrobe a little. I’ve been nannying or working with kids for so long that my main wardrobe staples have been jeans, soft tees, etc. In short, I needed some casual business wear that could easily transition to nannying because yes…I am still doing that too.

While not all of these are business-dress related buys, they are more intentional buys with the idea of transitioning between places every day.

Let’s start with shoes. This is my downfall area every time.

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Tortoise Flats

These tortoise shell flats from Asos were an instantaneous buy. With a coupon they were $20. I had an Old Navy pair of tortoise shell flats a couple of years ago that I wore into the ground. I LOVED them. These flats arrived and I was sooooo excited- until I put them on. It was the equivalent of wearing a pontoon boat. I checked the size and the box and it seemed consistent with the european size I ordered, but they were in no way a US size 8.

I spent a lot of time emailing customer service. I’ll give it to Asos that they are customer friendly, but I would have to ship these shoes back (internationally) with no shipping container available to me as they came in one of those bag things. The cost itself of doing so, just to get a refund, was not worth it. So my sister will be getting these shoes as she’s a shoe size larger than I am. That’s how faulty the shoe was in my opinion. – I don’t know if it was just the shoe was mis-marked or if this is a common european to US conversion issue, but I’m a little wary now. They are however super cute. Saga finished.

tan mules

dv Tan Mules

These tan mules were a Target purchase. They are in the dv line for target and are just really so great. They would look good with jeans, white jeans, boho dresses, and more. Furthermore, they were only $35 which for the quality was impressive. I cannot wait to wear the heck out of them.

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Striped Swimsuit

Okay, okay, obviously I am not wearing this swimsuit to work. Can you imagine? Oh man. Gap Factory was running a large sale last week which pushed me toward buying this swimsuit. Both pieces came in for a combined price of less than $20. You almost can’t get a Target swimsuit at that price anymore. The swimsuit came in and I tried it on even while bloated and it still looked good. The top comes down a little lower on the torso which I like. It covers that awkward upper ribcage area. Gap Factory is one of my go to stores when I am looking for decent pricing and trendier items. This comes into play with work items too.

Girlfriend Pants

Girlfriend Pants

Speaking of Gap Factory, these pants were also on sale last week. I like the girlfriend fit because it is looser, but not as baggy as the boyfriend fit. The navy pants are a nice transition piece toward spring and summer.

Dusty Road Peplum

Peplum Tee

I talked about this tee in winter/spring transitional pieces post. I didn’t want to buy the top online because I wasn’t sure about the fit. When in San Francisco recently – that’s another post to come – I found this at the local Urban Outfitters. Our Urban didn’t carry it so I all but jumped for joy. I could have picked a size small in it but if you want it closer cropped, like I did, then I’d size you can easily size down. It’s super comfortable, but it does dye your skin if you wear it too long. Blue skin. It was quite the look.

Fringe Vest

Fringe Vest

Remember my fringe obsession seen here? This vest from Old Navy only heightened my interest in the trend. I purchased this vest as I was making a return last week- yep, yep, that’s how that process goes. The tag is still on the vest though. I wanted to have it available to me, but I’m not sure I like what I paid for it. Old Navy is great but tricky. Sometimes the one item you are interested in is not on sale…when the rest of the store is. That’s the problem. I paid full price for this and I never ever do that at Old Navy. So, though I like this vest, it may go back until I can buy it for less (usually online). Patience in not removing the tag and keeping the receipt can be rewarding.

So these are just a few recent picks. I am trying to keep the dollar amount low and watch for sales as I go. Easier said than done sometimes. My hope is that as I get better at making outfits from current pieces I already have, I won’t need to purchase as many season shifting items for my wardrobe.

Uncategorized

And so it goes…

March 17, 2016

I hate to post just for the sake of posting, but I am so terribly behind.

I have lots of ideas forming, but have not had time to lay them out for a solid post.

Blame it on grad school midterms or trying to get my laundry done :]

I should be back this weekend with some new content and a little more consistency…hopefully.

Happy Thursday- St. Paddy’s Day!

Recently Read

Recently Read: The Book With No Pictures

March 14, 2016

There’s this book I was reading with the little girl I babysit for. It’s a book with no pictures.

And here I am to give you a picture of the book with no pictures.

book with no pictures

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Genius.

The interesting thing is that this is a book for kids. It has words throughout in different sizes and shapes. It tries to convey the message with emphasis.

During the book, you must read all the words- obvious- but it’s a caveat that the author indicates. The words may be typical or silly phrases.

To be honest, I wasn’t quite sure what to take away from reading this book with a 2 1/2 year old. She kind of was a bit uninterested, but I can understand how a slightly older kid could find the concept interesting and silly. In a way, it’s a sort of bridge between the picture books and readers to the full on chapter books of youth.

In honor of this book, tomorrow I am going to talk about something without using any pictures. We’ll see how well I can tell a story.

Tune in.