Thursday, September 30, 2010

A little chilly

It's Thursday, which means tomorrow is Friday Foodday! Send me your recipes via comment, email or tweet please!

Today it's a little chilly but not quite jacket or fleece weather so today I want to feature some scarves. They are a great accessory for Fall and they can be very versatile from outfit to outfit. Here are some of my favorites:

Old Navy, Multi-color mohair scarf, $16.50
I love this with denim or a blazer

Nordstrom, Bindya geometric jersey scarf, $38
The jersey material makes this great for mild temps

Modcloth, Haiku scarf, $24.99
This one is so sweet and feminine, almost vintage looking

Macy's, Echo scarf chiffon zebra, $18.99
With jeans OR a little black dress!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The Power of Sparkly Things.

Good Morning lovebugs!

It's the middle of the week and I don't know about you but I'm dying to get through it! If you have a second today, check out my guest post on Why I Love Organizing over on Oh, My Darling. (Yet another fabulous blog you should be reading!)

Today I'm going to tell you about the power of Etsy. I rely on Etsy mostly for gifts because they have such unique things. Sometimes it can be a bit overwhelming because you type in necklace and someone is selling their 3 year olds' macaroni necklace; but if you're patient and find some awesome sellers you'll keep coming back.

Here are some of my favorite jewelery finds on Etsy today:

Simon Designs, Triple Flower Post Earrings, $24

Luna Sunshine, Travel to Pairs pocket watch necklace, $30

The Jewelry Bar, Custom initial bird necklace, $42

Laura Lewis, Estate bracelet, $27

Laura Lewis, Sparkle ball earrings, $19

Vintage Lizzy, sparkly hair clip, $9

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Transitioning to Fall

I was talking with my friend this morning about how to move from sundresses to sweaters. It's a difficult change especially when the weather doesn't seem to be cooperating. Last week I posted about what it is just TOO early to wear right now; so what's the happy medium? Let's make some outfits that are fit for fall.

Sometimes I just have to start with a beautiful shoe:
Look #1

Fred Flare, Lucie Larkspur, $69.99

Banana Republic, Wool Herringbone Knife Pleat Skirt, $34.99

Gap, Favorite Cami, $10

Gap, embellished vintage cardigan, $49.99

Look #2

Old Navy, Boot cut cords, $34.50

Victoria's Secret, Silk & Cashmere Cowl Neck Sweater, $39

Steve Madden, Tuxxed Oxford, $69.95

Look #3

Gap, Always Skinny Jean $69.50

Ann Taylor Loft, Dolman Sleeve Cowl neck, $59.50

Jessica Simpson, Cedary, $44.99

Monday, September 27, 2010

Rainy Monday Smiles

Happy Monday everyone! Here in DC it is chilly and rainy for the next two days and all I want to do is put PJs on and crawl back under the covers. My weekend was super busy but productive, how about yours?

Congratulations to my lovely DC Alphas for a fabulous recruitment this weekend; I was so lucky to be a part of it!

For me this weekend was full of dog sitting, packing up the apartment, helping with recruitment, and finally moving the apartment up to the storage unit. I'm feeling sleepy and a bit worn this morning so I'm going to skip the fashion today and try to give you some inspiration on this gloomy day. Thank Etsy for all of these wonderful artists!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Friday Foodday

Guys! Great news! It's Friday Foodday! Wooohooo!!!

I hope you all have wonderful weekends planned. Mine will be full of recruitment for my old sorority at GW, one last Nats game and making the BF sweat it out with me while we move some of my stuff to the storage unit. Enjoy the sunshine and try out some of these great recipes!

If you want to recommend a recipe, please do! Email me, comment below or tweet me with the recipe!

Mac 'N Cheese Pie

What You Need
1 pkg. (14 oz.) KRAFT Deluxe Macaroni & Cheese Dinner
2 cups small broccoli florets
4 Eggs
1 pkg. (6 oz.) OSCAR MAYER Smoked Ham, chopped
1/2 cup KRAFT Shredded Cheddar & Monterrey Jack Cheeses

HEAT oven to 350°F.

COOK Macaroni in large saucepan as directed on package, adding broccoli to the boiling water for the last 2 min.; drain.

BEAT eggs in small bowl; stir in Cheese Sauce. Add to Macaroni mixture with ham; mix well. Spoon into 9-inch pie plate sprayed with cooking spray; top with shredded cheese.

BAKE 30 min. or until macaroni mixture is set in center and top is golden brown.

cheesecake-marbled brownies

c/o Annie

Brownie batter

1 stick (1/2 cup or 4 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
3 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2/3 cup all-purpose flour

Cheesecake batter
8 ounces cream cheese, well softened
1/3 cup sugar
1 large egg yolk
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Make brownie batter: Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 350°F. Butter an 8-inch square baking pan. Heat butter and chocolate in a 3-quart heavy saucepan — though I did mine double-boiler style, placing the mixing bowl I was using over simmering water, thereby creating one less dirty dish and melting the chocolate more gently — over moderately low heat, whisking occasionally, just until melted. Remove from heat and whisk in sugar, eggs, vanilla, and a pinch of salt until well combined. Whisk in flour until just combined and spread in baking pan.

Make cheesecake batter: Whisk together cheesecake batter ingredients in a small bowl until smooth. Dollop over brownie batter, then swirl in with a knife or spatula.

Sprinkle chocolate chips over cheesecake/brownie batter swirl. Although it might be more logical to just mix them into the cheesecake batter (and feel free to do this, it will have no ill-effect) I thought it might interrupt the swirl-ability of it.

Bake brownies: Bake until edges are slightly puffed and center is just set, about 35 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Chicken Cordon Bleu Bake

1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
1/2 green bell pepper, diced
1 clove fresh garlic, minced
1/4 lb diced ham
1 Cups cooked shredded chicken breast
1.5 Tablespoons butter
1/8 Cup flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon fresh cracked pepper
1 2/3 cups of chicken broth
2 Cups cooked rice of choice
1/4 Cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 Cup shredded mozzarella

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Heat oil into a large 5 qt rimmed skillet over medium heat. Saute onion and bell pepper until softened, about 5 minutes.

Stir in garlic, ham and chicken. Cook for an additional 5 minutes.

Melt butter then stir in flour, salt and pepper until combined.

Slowly stir in chicken broth until well combined. Stir in cooked rice then transfer to a baking dish.

Top with cheddar and mozzarella cheeses. Bake for 20-25 minutes.

Cover the dish with foil the last 10 minutes for oozing cheese.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Anniversary Night Out

This post is inspired by my dear co-worker turned great friend, Autumn. This weekend she and her husband will be celebrating their one year wedding anniversary and she asked me what to wear to dinner.

It got me thinking, what's romantic, semi-casual, sexy, and comfortable for a dinner night out? Especially now when you need to start weaning yourself off of summer dresses.

Here's some of my ideas for a romantic night out. Congratulations Autumn!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Suit Up!

Yesterday I told you what I wore to an event on the Hill. But what I didn't do is give you some options for suits that aren't stuffy! Now, this goes above my less than $100 rule for this blog but suits are a little more expensive, and if they fit correctly they're a piece you can break up and where for a very long time. Hope you enjoy!

JC Penny, Nine & Co 5 button skirt suit, $79.99
I'd pair with red heels to break it up, and use the blazer with jeans for casual Fridays

(I love this tie!)

Anne Klein, Taupe Plaid Suit, $142.99

(I LOVE the seaming on the waist of this jacket and the one button)

The Limited, Novelty Suit, together $142.74

Tahari, Bow Collar Jacket with Belt and Skirt, $139.99
And My favorite! Feminine, belted, skirt, and sale!!!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

You're Better than That

This morning I attended an event on Capitol Hill. I don't spend much time on that side of town (note capitAl barbie, not THE hill) but when I do I'm always so saddened by the clothing choices I see.

My office is business casual, so pants, skirts, blouses are fine. I only need a suit for large meetings or very formal conferences; so when presented with the opportunity to spruce up my usual 9-5, I jumped on the chance to 'hill-ify' my outfit. Sadly, I don't think many others did. The wildest outfit I saw was a boring black suit with (brace yourself) a pink oxford underneath. So boring. Unless tonight is your laundry night, you can do so much better. Here's what I wore:

Banana Republic, Orange Summer Tweed Blazer, (bought in 2009)

Ann Taylor, Cowl Neck Shirt, $29

Ann Taylor, Melange Ponte High Waist Skirt, $78

Enzo Angiolini, black patent mary jane with bow, (bought in 2008)

See? Professional, business-like, and not plain. And please ladies, for all of $8 you can take your heels to the cobbler or dry cleaner and get them heeled! Metal clicking around on hardwood floors is so amateur.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Too Soon.

Happy Monday everyone!

It was a whirlwind weekend for me. I went up to Connecticut for some fabulous BF's family birthday activities. Weather and party was so much fun, but I'm happy to be back in DC. Too much suburbia weirds me out after a while. I'm a concrete and sirens kind of girl.

If you missed it, you can read my guest post over at Makeunder My Life for my September Dos and Donts list. Thanks Jess for letting me be a part of MML!

Today's post is about what it is too soon for. Believe me, I'm just as excited as everyone else for fall. I'm over the twice a day showers from heat induced sweat walks to and from work. I hate humidity as much as the next person, especially when it comes to limiting my clothing options to bare minimums. BUT, here are some of the piece of fall apparel that I frown upon seeing this soon in September. It's not that cold people.

REI, Mountain Hardware Monkey Fleece Jacket, $99

Zappos, Rocket Dog Fuzzy Clog, $42*
* these are NEVER ok.

Newport News, Stretch Velvet Pants, $44

Halogen, Novel Wool pencil skirt, $51

Trust me, you will have MORE than enough time to break out the sweaters, houndstooth, herringbone, corduroys, and whatever else winter wear you love. High 60s does not equal fleece, try a trench or cotton safari coat. Be strong, cold is coming sooner than you know it.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Friday Foodday

It's that time again! Friday Foodday! Today is a special edition because we have gone global! That's right, I got a submission from my good friend in Macedonia who is doing peace corps. Woohoo!

Homemade Gnocchi
c/o Sara in Macedonia!
-2 pounds of potatoes. It is helpful if they are all around the same size since they will be boiling together, it helps them cook to the same level.
-1/4 cup beaten egg
-1 cup white flour

Step 1: Wash your taters and put them into a large bowl of cold water with a pinch of salt. Bring the water to a boil and then turn down the heat to medium. Allow the potatoes to cook until they are tender throughout, usually 40 minutes for medium sized potatoes

Step 2: Remove your tenderized potatoes from the water and set down to cool. Cut them in half so that they cool quicker. You want to work with the potatoes while they are still warm, but obviously do not burn your fingers. Once they are cool enough to touch, peel the potatoes.

Step 3: Using a cheese grater, grate the potatoes into a large bowl. The goal is to have an even consistency so that your dough won't have lumps. Once you've grated all of your potatoes, mix in some of your flour and begin to knead it into a dough. Use the egg mixture a little at a time: it is there to hold the dough together, so you very well may not use all of it. Add flour as needed (even if it is over 1 cup) and keep kneading until you have a soft, non-sticky ball. It usually takes around 5-10 minutes of kneading. Protip: if your bowl is big enough, knead the dough inside the bowl rather than on your counter top in order to expedite clean-up.

Step 4: Put another large pot of water on and let it heat up to a boil as you do Step 5.

Step 5: Cut your ball of dough into 8 even pieces. Roll each piece out into a snake about as thick as your thumb. Cut each dough snake into bite sized pieces-- the size is totally up to your preference.

Step 6: When the water comes to a boil, throw your bite-sized pieces into the boiling water, about 20 at a time. They will hang out at the bottom for a bit before coming to the surface. Let them boil at the surface for 20-30 seconds before taking them out with a slotted spoon and setting them to cool. Repeat with all your pieces until they're all cooked!

Mini Cinnamon Oatmeal Muffins

5 packets of cinnamon instant oatmeal (or any flavor)
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
2 eggs
1/4 cup canola oil

Preheat oven to 350*F
Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl
Coat a mini muffin tin with non-stick cooking spray
Pour batter into muffin cups
Bake for 15-20 minutes
Allow to cool and enjoy!

Down East Maine Pumpkin Bread
c/o Autumn!
(note from the chef- dogs love this too!)


  • 1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 3 cups white sugar
  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour three 7x3 inch loaf pans.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together pumpkin puree, eggs, oil, water and sugar until well blended. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and ginger. Stir the dry ingredients into the pumpkin mixture until just blended. Pour into the prepared pans.
  3. Bake for about 50 minutes in the preheated oven. Loaves are done when toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Baked Mac and Cheese

1 pkg. (7-1/4 oz.) KRAFT Macaroni & Cheese Dinner
1/4 cup Milk
1 can (14-1/2 oz.) diced tomatoes, drained
1/4 cup KRAFT Zesty Italian Dressing
2 Tbsp. Butter, melted
1 cup crushed RITZ Crackers (about 20 crackers)


Preheat oven to 375°F. Add Macaroni to large saucepan boiling water; cook 6 min. or until tender. Drain. Stir in milk and Cheese Sauce Mix.

Pour into greased 8-inch square baking dish. Mix tomatoes and dressing. Top macaroni mixture with tomato mixture. Drizzle butter over cracker crumbs; toss with fork. Sprinkle over tomatoes.

Bake 15 min. or until heated through and crumbs are golden.