Friday, October 31, 2014

Friday Foodday

Happy Friday lovebugs,
Here are some spooky recipes for your Halloween.

Vampire Punch
c/o Real Simple
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup Campari 
1/2  cup gin
1/2 cup orange juice 
3 cups club soda, chilled  
1/2 cup pomegranate seeds
1 orange thinly sliced


  1. Combine the sugar and ¼ cup water in a small saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring often, until the sugar has completely dissolved, 1 to 2 minutes. Let it cool.
  2. In a large pitcher or punch bowl, combine the Campari, gin, orange juice, and sugar syrup; chill for up to 12 hours. Just before serving, add the club soda, pomegranate seeds, and orange. Serve over ice.

Sour Cream and Chive Crackers 
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper (optional)
1 cup shredded fontina cheese
4 tbsp. butter, cold, cut in 1/2" pieces
2 tbsp. chopped fresh chives
1/4 cup sour cream
Small amount of black sesame seeds

In the bowl of a food processor place flour, salt, pepper (optional if your little ghouls don't like any spice), and the cheese, pulse one or two times.  Add butter and pulse a couple more times until mixture is looking crumbly.  Add chives and sour cream and pulse until the mixture is starting to ball up.

I used fontina cheese, but parmesan or white cheddar would also work well.

Place cracker dough in a covered bowl and refrigerate for 20 minutes.

Heat oven to 350 degrees F.

On a lightly floured surface roll dough to 1/4" thick and cut out with small ghost shaped cutter and place them 1/2" apart on a baking sheet lined with parchment or a silpat.  Place two black sesame seeds for eyes and one for the mouth.  I love mini cutter sets such as these, your local craft store is a good source too.

Bake 13-15 minutes.
Spooky Brookies

For the brownie layer:
1 box (18.75 oz) Ghirardelli Chocolate Supreme Brownie Mix (makes an 8x8inch pan)
1/4 cup water
1/3 cup oil
1 large egg
    For the cookie layer:
  • 16 Halloween Oreos
  • 1 pkg (16.5oz) Nestle Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough (in the refrigerated tube)
  • 1/2 cup Ghirardelli milk chocolate morsels
  • 32 candy "eyes"
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line an 8 or 9inch square baking dish with parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. Mix ingredients for brownies in a large bowl using a whisk. Mix until just combined. Pour into bottom of baking dish, spreading so batter goes all the way to the sides.
  3. Top with 16 Oreo cookies.
  4. Breaking the chocolate chip cookie dough into chunks, drop by tablespoons onto the brownie/Oreo layer. Continue until all cookie dough is used, and brownies are nearly covered.
  5. Top with extra milk chocolate morsels (optional).
  6. Bake for 35-40 minutes. Press "eyes" onto melted chocolate chips. Allow brookies to cool at room temperature. Once cooled, cover with foil and refrigerate for 2 hours (or overnight). Cut into 16 bars. ENJOY.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Drop it Like its a Dress

A great trend this year is bringing back the colorful prints and shapes from the 60s. One of those iconic shapes is the drop waist dress. It's funky, casual, and in my opinion, it's confident. Lets look at some fall/winter options you can add a denim jacket to or some tights.

I'd hold off for a great promo code from JCrew because they always seem to have them for sale items. If you can't wait, I totally understand and support you.

I absolutely love the way this dress fits. Like a glove. Go LBD or add a statement earring.

A little easier on the wallet and a great long sleeve option for fall.

Boden, Drop Waist Tunic Dress, $88
Oh you want a layering option? Boden has got you covered.

The drop waist is a really fun shape to try with tights and flats or an oxford and bootie. I love this look.

Be fabulous today!

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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Plaiding Ahead

It's almost November, which means it's almost full on winter, which means it's time to think plaid. Yep, I'm not holding back, I'm thinking ahead and getting my picks in now for plaid cropped pants. Not your wide leg or bootcut black and white plaid, and not your standard windowpane. I'm talking colorful, fitted, plaid.

I'm going to need these pants. Styled perfectly with a casual chambray as seen above, or add a navy silk blouse for your company holiday party.

I don't love the shoe pairing but this could very easily be swapped out with suede stilettos (PS going to need these shoes).

Anthropologie, Plaid Ponte Leggings, $89
Ok, these are technically leggings, but they have back pockets so they count. Plus leggings at holiday eating time? Don't hate that.

Wool with a touch of spandex? Yep and yep.

Are you brave enough for a plaid pant this winter? I can promise you the compliments will be abundant. 

Be fabulous today!

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Tuesday, October 28, 2014

In the Hood

As you know, The Bf sometimes gives some guidance for topics on the blog. Sometimes they're horrible, and sometimes he's got a good point. Lucky for you today is the latter. He has a thing for Made in the USA products and companies, and who doesn't? One of his favorites is American Giant. Have you heard of them? Well they make some high quality items and one of them has inspired the post for today: the women's zip up hoodie. Comfort meets style.

68 people have given this a five star review. That's like Yelp on steroids, they must be doing something right.

While not necessarily made in the USA, this is logo is an American clothing icon. This hoodie will never go out of style.

Singer 22, Monrow Long Zip Hoodie, $79
How about a relaxed fit longer version. Perfect with a ponte knit pant and a simple tee.

American Apparel, Unisex Flex Fleece Zip Up Hoodie, $48
Made in the USA goodness in about a million colors.

Simple, soft, and so comfy. Layer it with a scarf, dress it up with a statement necklace. Just have fun with it.

Be fabulous today!

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Monday, October 27, 2014

Bootie with Personality

Welcome back to the week lovebugs,
I hope you had a wonderful weekend. I sure did. I spent the weekend in New Hampshire with my family. Now it's back to business and I'm kicking things off with booties. I know, I know, it's like an overplayed Taylor Swift song (jk, that's impossible) but today we're looking at some booties with personality, a little cut out with a peep toe, perfect for fall.

Suede, stacked heel, metallic adjustable ankle strap. Enough said.

Alright Target, you can get in on this action. I love this blush bootie!

I have a special place in my heart for a padded footbed. Extra comfort and no one knows.

Modcloth, Make it Strappy Bootie, $54
These are sexy but in a bf jeans and floppy hat kind of way. In a Jessica Alba kind of way.

Enjoy these cutouts while your toes can still stand the chill. You're going to look great.

Be fabulous today!

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Friday, October 24, 2014

Friday Foodday

We made it! Happy Friday! Here are my favorite recipes this week.

The Gushing Groom
1 ounce Single Malt Scotch Whisky
1/2 ounce Aperol
2 dashes Angostura Bitters
Ginger ale to fill
Combine Scotch, Aperol and bitters in an ice-filled mixing glass and stir briskly. Strain into ice-filled double old-fashioned glass. Top with ginger alge.

Skillet Roasted red Pepper Artichoke Dip
1 Package (9 rolls) Frozen Garlic Parmesan Dinner Rolls, thawed and each roll cut in half
1 package Frozen Spinach, thawed and squeeze of excess water
1 package Frozen Artichokes, thawed and squeezed of excess water and chopped
1/2 cup Chopped Roasted Red Pepper
2 cloves Garlic, minced
1 8-oz Brick Cream Cheese, softened
1 cup Sour Cream
1 cup shredded Cheddar Cheese
1 cup shredded Parmesan Cheese
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In the middle of your skillet - or in a mixing bowl - stir together cream cheese and sour cream until smooth. Break apart drained spinach, artichokes, roasted red pepper, garlic and shredded cheeses. Stir together until combined. (If using a mixing bowl, pour into a skillet or other baking dish)
Bake the dip for 15 minutes, until bubbly. While the dip is baking, cut the thawed rolls in half. When the dip is done, remove from oven and place the rolls cut side down on top of the dip. Place the dip back in the oven and continue to bake until the rolls are baked through and golden brown on top.
Remove from oven and let cool for ten minutes prior to serving.

Carmel Apple Blondies
1/2 cup butter, melted
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg
1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
pinch of salt
1 cup mini Caramel Apple Milky Way candy bars, unwrapped
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8x8 baking dish with foil or parchment paper and spray with non-stick cooking spray.
In a medium bowl, stir together the melted butter, brown sugar, and vanilla. Stir in the egg until well combined.
Add the flour, cinnamon, and salt to the wet ingredients and stir until well combined. Gently stir in half of the candy bars. The batter will be thick and sticky.
Spread the batter into the prepared pan. Press the remaining candy pieces all over the top.
Bake for 20 minutes. The center should be barely set.
Cool before cutting.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Clutching The Quilt

Almost Friday lovebugs,
We're getting close. I thought we would spend some time in the purse department today. In particular the quilted clutch. I have a thing for quilted details, whether its in a jacket, sweatshirt, or today- the clutch.

JCrew Factory, Quilted Envelope Clutch, $88 (extra 25% off with code EXTRA25)
Here is a tough question for you: tell me when you wouldn't use this bag? Right.

Sole Society, Trichelle, $34
A simple wristlet that comes in a great berry color.

What a fun going out bag, but you can also use this as a great compartment to put your essentials in when you are using a bigger bag for work.

Last Call Neiman Marcus, Deux Lux Quilted Honeycomb Foldover Clutch, $65 $45
How about a honeycomb option? This bag looks so expensive, so don't tell anyone it's not.

The quilted clutch is a great option for a going out bag. It's classy and its got personality.

Be fabulous today! 

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Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Cuff Her

You what trend I'm having some trouble with loving? The ear cuffs. Who thought of this? Why? Why do we need to cuff the ear? But then I saw wearable options. The good people from Sole Society and BaubleBar who took this runway idea and made it workable for us normal folk. Let me show you.

Sole Society, Mini Stone Ear Cuffs, $24
See? We can do this. Great shape, not necessarily understated but we can do this.

BaubleBar, Hermes Ear Cuff Earring, $28
Two pieces, one ear. That's right. This is some serious ear bling.

Bloomingdale's, Rebecca Minkoff Fringe Ear Cuff, $58
So picture this with your faux leather jacket, now picture it with an LBD. It.Works.

This earring is so simple and stunning. Delicate petal detail with just enough sparkle.

So are you coming with me on the ear cuff train? I'm on it. I'm not driving the train, but I am definitely on board and enjoying the ride.

Be fabulous today!

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Tuesday, October 21, 2014

V is for Cardigan

I'm a big believer in cardigans. I keep one at the office when they decide to turn us into popsicles, I have a small collection (as The Bf says) at home, and I just think they are the most versatile, four season piece you can own. Today we're looking at the v-neck option because it is great for layering.

Ann Taylor, Ribbed V-Neck Cardigan, $79
Two words: Dark pine. This color is my new favorite of the season. 

Have you tried the Gap eversoft line? It's the feel of cashmere without the price.

JCrew, Merino Wool Double Knit Long Cardigan, $78 with code TGIFALL
JCrew's merino does not go on sale often. Scoop up this do it all neutral, you won't regret it.

The look of Ralph Lauren with the utility and reliability of LandsEnd, and in a gorgeous violet.

The v-neck cardigan is a classic piece that you can wear buttoned up with a tie neck blouse or wear open with a striped tee for a casual look. It's your do it all piece.

Be fabulous today!

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Monday, October 20, 2014

Bombs Away

Happy Monday lovebugs,
There is a chill in the air here on the East Coast. Do you feel it? It's fall kids, and I love it. It's time for layers, boots, and light jackets. We've discussed vests which are a great option for fall. And last week we looked at blanket scarves . Today we're talking bomber jackets, and boy do we have some options.

Didn't see that coming, did you? I know. I'm in love.

This jacket looks so cozy and casual. Want to have some fun with it? How about adding a sassy pin

A beautiful fall floral hue. Oh that navy.

Worn in, relaxed, soft, casual, I can keep going...

The bomber jacket isn't just for the boys. These patterns, quilted details, and colors are perfect for us and perfect for right now.

Be fabulous today!

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Friday, October 17, 2014

Friday Foodday

Happy Friday lovebugs!

Here are my favorite recipes this week.

Fall Sunset Sangria
c/o Whole Foods
  • 1 (750-ml) bottle chardonnay
  • 2 Bartlett pears, cored and chopped
  • 2 Gala apples, cored and chopped
  • 1 nectarine, cored and chopped
  • 1 (25.4-ounce) bottle Whole Foods Market Lemon or Lime Italian Soda, or sparkling water, chilled
Pour wine into a large pitcher and stir in pears, apples and nectarines. Chill for 6 to 8 hours, or up to 2 days. When ready to serve, pour into wine glasses (including some of the fruit) and top off with soda. Serve over ice, if you like.

Weekend Apple Pancake
2 large or 3 medium apples, preferably tart ones like Granny Smith
4 tablespoons white sugar, divided
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/3 cup unsalted butter
1/3 cup dark brown sugar
3/4 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
5 eggs
Powdered or cinnamon sugar, to serve

Heat the oven to 400°F. Peel, core, and quarter the apples, then cut them into medium slices (1/4-inch thick or less). Then cut the slices in halves or thirds. You should have about 3 cups of chopped apples.
In a small bowl, mix 3 tablespoons of sugar with the cinnamon and ginger and set aside.
Cut the butter into chunks and place them in a deep cast iron skillet or 8x8-inch baking dish. Put the skillet or baking dish in the oven for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the butter is melted. Take the pan out of the oven and sprinkle the 1/3 cup brown sugar over the melted butter. Carefully spread the apples on top of the brown sugar and sprinkle the cinnamon sugar mixture over the apples. Put the pan back in the oven to caramelize the apples and sugar.
Whisk the flour with the remaining tablespoon of sugar, salt, and nutmeg. Gradually add the milk, whisking constantly with a large wire whisk to beat out any lumps. When the flour is smoothly incorporated into the milk, beat in the vanilla and the eggs one by one. Beat by hand for 2 minutes, or until foamy. Let the batter rest for 5 minutes. By now the sugar should be bubbling around the apples.
Take the pan out of the oven and pour the batter over the apples. Bake for about 20 more minutes or until center is set and sides are lightly browned. The pancake will puff up dramatically but fall after a few minutes after you take it out of the oven.
If you want, serve with powdered sugar or more cinnamon sugar. I usually find that it is just sweet enough as it is.

Fresh Garlic Chex Mix
4 1/2 cups corn chex
4 1/2 cups rice chex
1 cup mixed nuts
1 cup small pretzels
1 cup plain pita chips, broken into small pieces
6 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons seasoned salt
2 teaspoons onion powder
dash Tabasco hot pepper sauce
3 cloves garlic
Heat oven to 250 degrees. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with foil.
Add the cereal, uts, pretzels, and pita chips to a large bowl.
Add the butter to a small sauce pan and heat until melted over medium heat.
Remove from the heat and stir in the Worcestershire sauce, seasoned salt, onion powder, and Tabascol. Grate the garlic on a microplane grater into the butter mixture. Stir well.
Pour the butter mixture over the cereal, stirring as you pour. Stir well to coat everything.
Spread the mixture out on the baking sheet. Bake for 1 hour, stirring carefully every 15 minutes.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Lounge in Luxury

Let's get comfy. I'm loving the new lounge trend that combines comfort and style. Today we're looking at lounge pants that are big on comfort and low on price.

These are on my Christmas list. I'm not sure I'll be able to wait that long.

Urban Outfitters, Native Youth Quilted Jogger Pant, $80
Are these mens? Yes. Do I still want them? Absolutely.

How freakin' comfy do these terry pants look? Hello Sunday morning.

Victoria's Secret, Super Soft Knit Cropped Pant, $44
How about a crop option? I love this marled cotton look and it comes in so many colors.

We don't often talk lounge on this blog, but with the colder days coming I tend to hibernate a bit. These pants are great options for comfort an style.

Be fabulous today!

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