Thursday, September 5, 2013

My Top 10 Favorites


A Few of My Favorite Things

As Fall quickly approaches, I realized that I have some favorite things that I'd like to share, and here they are!

1. Friends. No, not the TV show, but my real skin-and-bones human friends. They are my encouragers, my shoulder to cry on, my confidantes-without them, I'd be bored and an all-around depressed person. 

2. My Mother. I didn't always agree with her, but we've become really good friends, and I love her so much!

3.End of Summer/Early Fall Weddings. One of my dearest friends, Hannah, is getting married in-yikes-2 days from now, and, as this is my favorite time of year-plus I love her & weddings-I'm looking forward to this occasion with much joy and exultation! 

4. Plumbing that works. I think that says it all, doesn't it?!?!

5. The Return of the Fall TV Shows. I've got a long list of what I like, so I won't bore you here. But, I do know that the UK will be airing some shows that I'll be looking forward to, I just have to find them!

6.Skype and FaceTime. With both of my brothers over on the East Coast, I'm extremely grateful for these tools in seeing and talking to the people I love. With one brother in Virginia, the other in New Hampshire, I look forward to seeing them every week (I think my mum is, too!)!

7. Watches. I've been looking for the perfect gold watch, menswear-inspired, and I finally found it! Okay, my sister found it, but she knew I was looking for one (fortunately, I was with her). It's beautiful, with  a large gold face, clasp-link wrist strap, and glow-in-the-dark hands, which is good for my poor, blind eyes at night! 

8. Florence + the Machine. I've loved Flo, and will continue to love her and her amazing voice (and great hair!)!

9. A Working Sewing Machine. Without this illustrious item, I'd be bored and have no beautiful new skirts!

10. Imagination. I know that imagination can seem like a silly thing, but by using it, I was able to create a couple of fantastic skirts without a pattern. Now, you might be one of those type of people who can make anything just by snipping and stitching, but for us "normal" people, it can be hard to create without a pattern. Luckily, I've been working at a quilt shoppe long enough to begin to become one of those who can just go and create. I've now made those skirts, and they turned out great, if I say so myself! 

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Black is the New, Well, Black

I'm so ready for Fall to come. I remember writing about how much I love Fall last year, so instead I'm going to talk about things that I love in the fashion world for the fall, and it mainly has to do with the color black.
Photo from http://steinarbergolsen.tumblr.com
Let's talk about Fall, and the color black:
~It's a beautiful color that goes with everything. 
~You can mix a variety of textures when they're black, even when you have different shades.
~Black dresses, skirts, pants; everything goes so well with them.
~Black shoes, especially boots (as pictured above, maybe with a shorter heel!).
I'm looking forward to mixing long colored skirts, black tops, and statement jewelry together this year. I'm also looking forwards to my coats that I love so much my red wool peacoat, my London Fog trench coat, and my vintage dress coats that my Great-great Grandma and Aunts made when they were my age.

The other thing that I'm looking forward to is the makeup that is my go-to look: black winged eyeliner, sculpted cheekbones, and red lips. My favorite red is Russian Red by MAC Cosmetics, eyeliner by Sephora. I also love mixing a smoky brown or gray eye with plum lips (Media by MAC), or black winged liner with pink lipstick (Snob by MAC), similar to Audrey Hepburn's look in Breakfast at Tiffany's . Makeup can really make or break an outfit, so choose wisely! 
As the summer ends, kids go back to school, the sweaters come out and Fall begins. All I have to say is: bring on the new season with love and good fashion.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

So no one told you life was gonna be this way...

My life would is really crazy right now-friends with babies coming, getting married, just living a crazy life-I really don't know what I'd do without the help, love, and support of my friends. They are the ones I can text anytime, day or night, and they will be there for me. I can SOS and they will come and rescue me. It basically comes down to this: I love them. This group of 5 special women-"The Girls"-are one of the reasons-the best reason-my week goes better.

Well, we have a favorite tv show-which some of you know and love-called F.R.I.E.N.D.S., and we enjoy getting together and watching it, or hanging out every week at the local coffee shop and talking about our lives. We have even figured out which person resembles each character from the show, and it's scarily accurate. Here are my comparisons; let's see if I'm right!

                                                      Rachel is: Hannah & Danielle

Hannah and Danielle are definitely Rachel; a good friend, loves her hair, and wasn't sure if she could ever settle for the right guy. They're confidant, loves to shop, and loves, loves, LOVES shoes. Danielle is more country-Rachel, while Hannah is city-Rachel. 
Hannah and Danielle are funny, and have a smile for everyone, 
even when they don't feel like smiling herself!

Phoebe is: Camille & Michelle
To say that Michelle and Camille aren't Phoebe would be a total & complete lie. They play guitar, are eccentric, get along with the most random of people, and sometimes even sing Smelly Cat. 
Loyal to the end, and always there for you! They're also both tall and have a great sense of humor and always make the people around feel comfortable and loved!

Monica is: Danielle & I

Danielle & I are the Mother Hen of the girls, making sure that everyone has everything they need. We are get-to-it, make sure everything is right kind of women. We love having people around us, even though we enjoy those quiet times by ourselves or with those we love. I love to cook, and I clean when I stress. Or when it's messy. Plus I like to have most things in a certain space. Except for my closet. No one looks in there! 

In conclusion, I've decided to post most of the lyrics from that famous song, "I'll Be There for You" by The Rembrandts:

So no one told you life was gonna be this way
Your job's a joke, you're broke, your love life's D.O.A.
It's like you're always stuck in second gear
When it hasn't been your day, your week, your month, or even your year, but

I'll be there for you 
(When the rain starts to pour) 
I'll be there for you 
(Like I've been there before) 
I'll be there for you 
('Cause you're there for me too) 

You're still in bed at ten and work began at eight 
You've burned your breakfast, so far things are going great 
Your mother warned you there'd be days like these 
But she didn't tell you when the world has brought you down to your knees and

I'll be there for you 
(When the rain starts to pour) 
I'll be there for you 
(Like I've been there before) 
I'll be there for you 
('Cause you're there for me too)

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

So It's April Now...

Wait-it's April? Where the heck did March go? To be honest, I really have no idea! The end of March and beginning of April brings on a new load of things, like that last minute rush to get taxes done, gallbladder surgery, and beautiful weather (bring on the flowers and picnics!). Yes, I have to finish my taxes, but currently, I am sitting on my parents couch recovering from gallbladder surgery, thinking about where all my tax paperwork is currently sitting. So, I shall now show you a picture of some pretty flowers my sister picked from the garden, as well as a picture of some yummy goodness my mum made for dinner yesterday:

Aren't they pretty?!?! They have definitely been brightening up my time here. -------->
<--I've also been enjoying some delicious, low or non-fat dishes from my mom, who is the best cook this side of, well, anywhere! Even the plainest dishes are spectacular when she's waved her magic wand (we call her Mrs. Weasley for a reason). 

This week has included some great food, fantastic painkillers, and even more fabulous family and friends who have been taking care of me and making sure that I'm recovered shipshape to enjoy this beautiful month of the beginnings of beauty here in the beautiful state of Oregon.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

A Trip to IKEA makes a Girl Most Happy!

I love IKEA. How do I love IKEA? Let me count the ways... 
don't worry, that's all I'm going to say, except that it's Awesome! 
Okay, so a couple of weeks ago, my mum and I went to IKEA for fun, but I always have a list of new things I've found in the 2013 catalogue. It's always way too easy to spend a bunch of moolah there, and, as always, I spent lots (and got lots!)! I had been needing to redo my apartment, as it was, to quote my mother, "first-apartmenty." To be honest, I was tired of the way I had it, with curtains that made everything too dark, and a black bedspread that was needing to lighten up. I also had a very messy closet that was needing to be reorganized into a fabric holder (for my thousands of yards of fabric!).
I would like to now show you my beautiful results!
Here is my bathroom! I originally had an old shower curtain I bought at the dollar store, and it was in desperate need of something pretty and new. I took black sheer curtains that I had hanging in my living area, bought a new shower rod, a new heavy-duty shower curtain, and voila! New, updated, beautiful bathroom with new towels, too!
On the top, you will find my messy, messy closet with an old entertainment center that needed to go away. So armed with a box of shelving pieces, some storage boxes, some sweat and my version of curse words, I completed the EXPEDIT shelf and KASSETT boxes. These boxes must be a part of Time-Lord technology (sorry, it's  Doctor Who reference), because these boxes are bigger on the inside-they hole SO much-and I was able to transfer so much fabric into them. Oh Happy Day!
I had a super messy refrigerator top, so I bought a couple of shelves to organize it! A few screws, tossing some stuff into the trash, and poof! Organized with everything actually visible (what a concept). Thank goodness for organization!

 
Now for my favorite part, my sleeping quarters! My bed and I have been in a very long and happy relationship, but my bed was in need of a makeover. I found this wonderful duvet set with pillow slips (for a super good price!), and some new curtains, and presto! Bed Magic! I love toile, so this EMMIE LAND duvet set was the top priority on my shopping list. 
I highly recommend IKEA for your home improvement needs; it's a magical place full of fun and ideas to create a wonderful, comfortable environment you'll enjoy being in!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Entertaining for A Few (Awesome Friends!)...


One of my favorite new magazines that I was introduced to this last year is Kinfolk, a wonderful magazine/book filled with absolute wonder. It's got some fantastic stories, essays, and recipes that make you want to do everything this book contains. So, when I received the latest beautiful issue, I decided it was time to have a couple of my closest friends over for dinner! I always enjoy entertaining people; the cooking, the setting of the table, the wonderful smells of food coking on the stove. The menu was as follows:
~Curried Chicken Spinach Tostadas w/homemade salsa                       
~Mixed Greens Salad w/homemade blackberry red wine vinaigrette 
~Jasmine Limeade (from the Kinfolk Magazine)                                                                      
~Mango Sorbet

The dinner was so good, it disappeared way to quickly, I have to (yes, have to) share the chicken tostada recipe with you!
Chicken Spinach Tostadas
  • 4 Chicken Thighs
  • 1/2 pkg. Spinach, chopped into large pieces
  • 1 can Black Eyed Peas
  • Curry Powder
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Vegetable Broth
  • 1 1/2 TBL. Sesame Oil
Take the chicken, sprinkle salt, pepper, and curry powder on top and rub into the chicken. Heat olive oil in a pan and add the chicken. Cook thoroughly and remove from pan, chop into medium bite-size pieces. Add the spinach and black eyed peas into the pan and cook for a couple of minutes. Add the chicken, cooking for about 5 mins, mixing in the veggie broth and sesame oil. Serve on top of fried (in olive oil) corn tortillas and spoon some salsa on top. Enjoy!
Here are some photos from that fun night!

Monday, March 18, 2013

Hair No Hair No Hair (for my Hairbrush)!





Carole is a great and powerful Cancer Butt-Kicker!
If anyone guessed where that line came from, congratulations! If not, and y'all think I'm weird, it's from a Veggie Tales song. The reason why I'm singing this song lately is because of something fantastic and drastic, such as shaving my head! Why, you may ask? Because of a very special person in my life, my good friend Carole. She is an amazing woman who has been diagnosed with Breast Cancer and is seriously KICKING CANCER BUTT!! After a couple of surgery's, she's now begun chemotherapy.

Carole is not only a friend-more of a cool aunt-but an amazing and confident woman who takes everything in life with a smile on her face! I was very glad to be with her on the day that she shaved her head, and, in solidarity, I shaved mine with her. I have to admit, we are some good-lookin' babes! It is a pleasure and an honor to do this with her, and I look forward in seeing her continue life with that beautiful smile and contagious laughter! Way to go girl!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Good Dinners & Even Better Friends...

     One of my favorite thing to do in the evening is to host a friend or two for dinner. This last Saturday, my friend Camille came over and we enjoyed a lovely evening filled with good food, laughter, and a chick flick. Since both Camille & I are on restricted diets right now, dinner was my own twist of Shared Appetite's Sweet Potato and Kale Hash with a Fried Egg. Here is my own version:
This stuff is really tasty!

Red Potato, Carrot & Kale Hash with a Fried Egg
2 Red Potatoes, chopped into 1/4" pieces
3 Carrots, chopped into 1/2" rounds
1 Bell Pepper, preferably Yellow, chopped into 1/4" pieces
1 package Trader Joe's Organic Crimini Mushrooms
1/4 package Trader Joe's Organic Tuscan Kale, coarsely chopped
1 tsp. Paprika
1 tsp. Cumin
Salt & Pepper to taste

Cookin' up some Kale!
Heat up 2 Tbl. Olive Oil in a pan, add potatoes, carrots, mushrooms and bell peppers. Add paprika, cumin, salt and pepper and stir, cooking for 10 minutes. Add kale and cook for another 5 minutes.
Fry your egg and place on top of your bowl of deliciousness!

You can swap the reds for sweet potatoes if you so choose, it's delicious either way! I've also found it delicious with a bit of fresh mozzarella cheese right under the egg so it gets all melted. This meal is really good with a Riesling from Chateau Ste. Michelle, or some Pellegrino.

Dinner was a lovely and fun affair filled with laughter and good spirits. It's always a good time when you are enjoy and love who those around you; it makes every occasion that much sweeter! When you know that those that surround you care for you as much as you care for them, it makes each moment with them the most special moment on the world.

After dinner, we started our movie off with some delicious dessert, which consisted of some Trader Joe's Mango Sorbet & their Dark Chocolate Covered Cranberries. Oh my word, it was delicious!
We ended the night with 50 First Dates, sorbet, and chocolate.

I believe it was an excellent way for two best friends to end a Saturday night!








Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Of Kitchens...

You can create many memories in kitchens,
including silly ones with your siblings!
There are some things in this world that can make some of us easily happy and entertained. A kitchen is something that makes me happy, because it's where memories of simple and beautiful can be made. For example, my grandma's kitchen reminds me of the day of summer eating popsicles and making sugar cookies, whereas my mom's kitchen reminds me of learning how to make everyones favorite chocolate chip cookies and giving the cats a bath (which was painful, yet fun). Time when everyone hurried to finish that final touch on the Thanksgiving dinner so we could eat before the clock struck midnight, or sneaking into the fridge later for a leftover sandwich (which I know we all do). Kitchens are an amazing place full of love, laughter, tears, sitting on the floor just simply enjoying some peace and quiet. Take some time and sit in your kitchen, wash some dishes, or make a pot of tea, enjoying the simpleness that a kitchen can bring!


Thursday, January 24, 2013

Now I'm obsessed...


With Chalkboard Paint! It is now an obsession of mine-I've been painting random bottles, including my olive oil bottle and my tea box. I found my chalkboard paint at Home Depot-30 oz. for $10.97-in black. You can get it and have them mix it into another color, but as I am old-fashioned about some things, I decided to go with good old-fashioned black! You will most likely need at least two coats for some items, like the tops of my mason jar lids-it is so much better than the tape I used before! So pick some up at your favorite craft or hardware store, and paint, paint, paint!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Happy New Year!

Okay, well, happy belated New Year, anyway. It has been quite a crazy Holiday season for me and my family. My brother came home form school, which made everyone really happy, and our family was together once again. As the end of the year drew to a close, I decided to come up with some practical ideas for the new year-not resolutions, but goals to complete. After I had written about 25 ideas, I decided to choose my top six goals.
  • Finish 3 quilts, which gives me four months to complete each. Since the quilts I've chosen to complete are almost done, I might actually be able to complete more. Maybe...
  • Redecorate my apartment. My humble abode is way too crammed with things I've collected over the last few years, so I am in dire need to de-clutter and lighten things up. Organization is key.
  • Work harder on keeping a positive attitude. Pray more, worry less. Life is too important to worry so much (plus it keeps the wrinkles away!
  • Drink less coffee. Hah!
  • Take more pictures of everything, from nature to my family to my freshly revamped apartment (when I get that done!).
  • Get my Doula training and get my certification.
Image courtesy of AForestFrolic (Flickr)
These goals don't seem too bad, right? I think the last one will take the most effort , but in the end it will be an experience that will change my life forever. I wish and hope all goodness, happiness, and less worry in this new year of 2013!