Monday, March 19, 2012

Good News, Bad News

Skirt from H&M; Shirt from H&M; Shoes from Max Studio via TJMaxx; Purse from Michael Kors
Alright, friends, I've got some good news and bad news...

The good news is that the house I'm standing in front of will quite probably be ours in 45 days!!!! That's right! Home ownership is in my future! I've dreamt of being in a house for quite some time now - entertaining with more space, lounging on a patio, having a dining room (mmm... I eat it all up!) - and it's finally becoming a reality!

... now, the bad news is, that because of this house, the wedding, and MBA aspirations, I've decided to take a hiatus from the blog. It really pains me to tell you guys because I feel like I'm letting down a group of friends, but at the end of the day, there are just some things I can't keep putting off (namely the wedding) that need to start taking more priority in my life. I'm not sure how long the hiatus will be but I appreciate everyone's ability to understand what I'm going though. You all are great followers and people and I couldn't be happier with the support you've given me and continue to give me in life.

Thank you!!!!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Curly Girly

So I think I have finally conquered being able to curl my hair with a hot iron! And it's only taken me 24+ years to figure out!

Now I just have to figure out how to NOT scar my face while doing it because the burn that currently runs down the side of my chin is definitely NOT helping the look.

Happy (almost) Friday everyone! Enjoy the weekend!

Monday, March 12, 2012

Monday Blues

Pants from H&M (recent); Shirt from BR (old); Necklace and Bracelet from some street vendor; Watch from Fossil; Shoes from Madden Girl

After having a less-than-enjoyable experience today at the doctor's office, I'm ready to say goodbye to Monday! Hope the rest of you had a better start to your week than I did! 

At least we've got St Patty's day to look forward to on Saturday. Anyone have some good Irish recipes to share? I'm looking for a relatively easy version of Corned Beef and Cabbage.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Blood Orange Marmalade

It's always been a goal of mine to try my hand at jarring. I'm not sure why, but I find there's something so charming about the process. The idea of spending an afternoon slicing up fresh seasonal fruit, lingering over the stove as the mixture simmers, and quietly enjoying it on a slice of peanut butter bread with a mug of coffee seems so inviting. After spotting a recipe for blood orange marmalade recently on this blog, I knew I had found my winner...

Unfortunately, I met a little bump in the road during my marmalade process. To jar things properly, you need to run the jars through a boiling hot water bath which requires a pot of water tall enough to cover the entire jar, which I didn't have. One easy way around this would be to use shorter jars (I used pints) but on a lazy Sunday afternoon, making another trip to Michael's was not in my future. Instead, I just skipped this step and stored my jam in the fridge and finished it within the week. If you go through the proper process of jarring, your jam would last far longer (6 months or so) as long as the jar hadn't been opened.

If you're interested in doing the real thing, try this website tips.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Boyfriend Jacket and Travel

Blazer - H&M; Jeans - Miss Mee (old); Necklace -Express (old)

I finally scored myself a boyfriend jacket! All you trend-setters out there, please don't make this article of clothing fall out of style yet. I may be behind the curve when it comes to trends, but better late than never!

In unrelated news, Nick and I are planning a trip out to the Pacific Northwest and we need your help. If anyone has suggestions of things to do in Seattle and Vancouver, please let me know! Your suggestions for my trip to Boston last fall were invaluable and I'd love to hear your recommendations for this trip too!

ALSO (and this is a big also) I need your input on some fashion travel decisions. What shoes should I bring?!?! The weather is going to be between the mid 50's to mid 60's so sandals seem too cool and riding boots seem too warm (maybe a bootie would work but they're not terribly versatile and I'm trying to pack light). I hate myself in flats so I feel like that only leaves me with a small wedge pump. Any other ideas???

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

St Germain and Meyer Lemon

After getting out of work at a reasonable hour this past Friday, I found myself with enough time before the night's festivities to enjoy a cocktail at home (rarely does this happen). The afternoon was warm so I needed something light and with a few Meyer lemons waiting to be put to good use in my fridge, I decided on a mix of Meyer lemon juice, vodka, and St Germain.

If you haven't ever tasted St Germain, you must give this lovely French liqueur a try. It reminds me a lot of lychee fruit but with some floral undertones. You can pair it with many different liquors (a list of recipes is on their website here) but my favorites mixes include vodka, gin, or champagne. I especially love the bottle and packaging - so pretty and with such character!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Weekend Uniform

Oxford from Target; Jeans from H&M; Shoes from Max Studio via TJMaxx; Necklace from Stella & Dot; Watch from Fossil
I love it when bloggers share their "weekend uniform" outfits. I find it really interesting to see what they're most comfortable in and, many times, it shows what their personal style really boils down to. For me, it's subtle colors (navy), classic and clean pieces (pearls and oxfords), and versatile shoes (nude wedges) that I can tackle any activity in.

What is your weekend uniform and what does it say about you?

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Wedding Inspiration

Ever since I got engaged all my married friends have commented how jealous they are that I get to plan a wedding in the "Pinterest age." And I must admit, they are completely right. Here are some pins that have got me inspired for my special day. ; )

In other wedding news, we haven't made many plans yet. We both love the idea of a destination wedding (maybe Key West, so it would be in driving distance for most of our guests) but the idea seems daunting. Any advice from readers out there who have been there and done that? 

Lighting: 1, 2, 3, 4
Color Palettes (clockwise from right): 1, 2, 3, 4
Centerpieces (clockwise from right): 1, 2, 3, 4
Dresses (clockwise from right): 1, 2, 3, 4

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Neutral Blocking

Skirt from Urban Outfitters; Shirt from H&M; Scarf from Target; Tight from Target; Shoes from Ellen Tracy
I've only been in the mood for neutral blocking outfits (is that a term?) lately and now I've got another one to add to the list...

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Hair Adventures

If there is one thing I'm lacking in personal style it's definitely my creativity in the hair department. I'm bad at buns, terrible at braids, and can't work with rollers if my life depended on it. So when Misikko recently gifted me with a brand spankin' new hair dryer and flat iron to review, I knew this would be my biggest motivation and best chance at branching out with my hair style. These are my tips and reviews of the process.

The blow dryer was up first.

The main reason why I liked using this hair dryer is because of how powerful the dryer jet stream was (is that the correct term?). This is a hugely critical factor in picking a hair dryer for a few reasons; 1) it cuts down on the time you spend drying your hair, 2) the force of the dryer can literally straighten your hair, and 3) the fact that you spend less time drying your hair means that you’re pumping less hot hair into your bathroom which cuts down on the humidity in your bathroom and subsequently helps to keep your hair straight (that was a mouthful but it completely makes sense!).

Now on to the fun stuff. I decided to try my hand at curling with a straightener. I love the look of relaxed beachy waves but my curls ended up looking more retro and classic.

There are a ton of videos out there explaining the process but here's how I tackled it:

When you begin the curl, position the straightener around a piece of hair like you usually would when straightening it but make sure you’re as close to the root as possible. Next, clamp down and turn the straightener in the direction away from your face and rotate around by about a half circle. Keeping it tightly clamped, pull the straightener down the length of your hair. If you find that you’re having problems with making your hair curl, try either taking smaller pieces of hair, pulling more slowly, or clamping more tightly. It took me a couple tries to get it down. 

I could immediately tell that this was a high-quality straightener by the way it made my hair feel so soft. Prior to using this one, I was working with an aging flat iron that would make my hair feel like it could break off at any moment. The other thing I liked about this product is a small light that blinks once it's reached the desired temperature. This little feature seems so simple but I've actually found it to be very helpful when I'm playing around with high and low temperatures.

Hope you found this helpful!