Friday, June 29, 2012

{Friday's Fancies} Beachy Chic

Beachy Chic
Happy Friday people! I'm so thankful for the weekend ahead. I plan on relaxing as much as possible before all of next week's festivities. Since we don't have a beach to cool off at, we resort to nearby lakes in order to get our swim on. It might not compare to the beach, but it allows us to boat, board, and tube which is all I really need, especially when surrounded by friends!

Today we're gonna talk about looking beachy {or lake!} chic. It's no secret that I love nautical clothing and accessories, but I often embrace the boho look because it's sooo easy and carefree. Above I've featured a simple and sweet bikini that can be topped off with either a nautical or bohemian look:

//Nautical// These J. Crew striped shorts have made plenty of appearances on bloggers sets across the web. I understand why though. They're tailored, pleated, and perfectly striped. In the words of the fabulous Goldilocks, "They're jussstttttt right." I'd pair them with just about everything, but for the lake I'd opt for a loose, button-up tank. And just like the top, any shoe works with these shorts. But how adorable are those lobster print TOMS?! Definitely not for every day wear, but they sure are appropriate for a day at the lake or the Cape! 

//Bohemian// I love a good quality tunic. Silk or cotton is preferred for a long day in the heat and hopefully it has at least one fun element to it - like embellishments or an interesting print. They're so easy to throw on over a swim suit and even transition from beach to bars. All you need to do is add a slip underneath and switch out the flat sandals for wedges or a sandal with a chunky heel! Accessorizing at the beach is OK in my book, as long as you keep it to a minimum with a bracelet and some fun earrings {I love these feather ones!}. Also, a great beach bag is one that won't collect piles of sand AND can get wet! This clear, studded  bag is perfect for cramming all your necessities in it. What's even better is you can see right through it which will minimize scouring through your purse!

Do you tend to go the nautical or bohemian route when soaking up some sun?

Don't forget to visit {longdistanceloving} for more beachy chic inspiration! Hope you all have a fab weekend!


Thursday, June 28, 2012

{Bruschetta} Brie, Pear & Caramelized Onion

I lovvveee me some bruschetta. Doesn't really matter what's on it, I'll most likely scarf down a dozen or so. Maybe that sounds like a ridiculous amount, but I have a hefty appetite and can put away a good amount of food. Ask my friends and family - they'll tell you I'm a human garbage disposal. 

Ok, back to the food. I was getting bored with my usual, awesome pesto bruschetta {recipe coming soon!}, so I decided to experiment a little here. The pear really compliments the Brie cheese, but one thing you should note is to only use RIPE pears. Pears tend to lack in flavor if they're not ripe enough. They're also tough and have an even weirder texture than normal. So make sure your pretty little pear is more than ready to eat, or else this dish will just taste so-so. When all said and done, these little bites just melt in your mouth. Very indulgent, but so worth it. 

{Makes 22}

Ingredients: 1 baguette. 1 onion, sliced. 2 pears, peeled and sliced. 1/6 wheel Brie cheese. 2 Tbsp olive oil. 1 Tbsp brown sugar. 2 tsp balsamic vinaigrette {optional/if needed}

Directions to caramelizing onions:
  1. Heat up olive oil in a pan over medium heat. Add your onions and brown sugar – stir to coat. Then, turn your burner down to a low-medium heat.
  2. At first, stir your onions every 5 minutes or so. Let them “sweat” which will allow all the water to release into the pan and evaporate slowly. This ensures your onions will caramelize all the way through and not just on the outside.
  3. After about 15 minutes, you’ll need to really pay attention to your onions. Stir frequently so your onions don’t stick to the pan and burn. If you come across that problem, just add a little water or balsamic vinaigrette to rehydrate your onions.
  4. Cook the onions until they’re soft and anywhere from honey-colored to deep brown. {Mine pictured are really caramelized because I was busy taking pictures and forgot about them} . I suggest cooking them for 30-35 minutes in order to achieve.
Directions for bruschetta:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
  2. Cut the loaf of bread into 1 inch slices. Place slices on a baking sheet and put in the oven for 3 minutes to lightly crisp up. 
  3. Take the baking sheet out of the oven and place somewhere you can easily assemble the bruschetta. 
  4. Add 1 slice or about 1 Tbsp of Brie cheese to each slice of bread. The, add one slice of pear on top, followed by a scoop of caramelized onions. 
  5. Place the baking sheet in the oven and bake for 5-8 minutes or until the cheese is nice and melted. 
  6. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and set aside to cool for 2 minutes.

Eat and enjoy your nom noms! 


Wednesday, June 27, 2012

On my mind // the necessities

On my mind: the necessities

I realized the other day that I haven't created a wishlist in a hot minute. Probably because my birthday isn't until next year and no present-giving-holidays are in the near future, so there's no need to give "hints" to anyone about what to get me. Typically, I'll pin coveted items to my Wish List board via Pinterest, but I tend to forget about them in a week. So, I'm going to start creating a round up of my wants, needs and must-haves right here on the blog. This new installment is called "On my mind" and this week I'm focusing on affordable necessities I personally have been swooning over. 
  • //One// Zara Color Block Heels {$50}: Last year, my dad and step mom bought me some pink and orange two-tone heels from Zara that I absolutely love {my dad was hesitant to buy them for me because he said they look like stripper shoes}. But I think my shoe collection is in dire need of another color block pair of heels. I tried these on in SF, but unfortunately they were out of my size - 37 UK if anyone wants to know ;)
  • //Two// Baublebar Mini Monogram Necklace {$95}: Baublebar came out with the smaller version of their gorgeous monogram necklace and it's been on my mind ever since! The big one is fabulous, but the smaller one petite enough to wear every day. 
  • //Three// THEIT Black "Bossi Bag" {$159}: THIS bag will be mine. It's the perfect camera bag as it has padded {removable} compartments AND it's waterproof! Not only is it functional, but it's pretty too!
  • //Four// Kate Spade "Cobble Hill Leslie" Purse {$224 on sale!}: I've been saying I need a new work purse for way too long now. I need to bite the bullet and get a high-quality piece, since it's used at least five days a week. This Kate Spade bag makes me weak in the knees with its color, shape and exapandability.
  • //Five// Gorjana Chevron Charm Bracelet {$60}: I'm a sucker for dainty bracelets and chevron. I. Want. This. NOW.
  • //Six// Yves Saint Laurent Arty 'N' Ring {$248 on sale!}: A fabulous statement necklace is a must-have, but so is a fabulous statement ring! The rope detailing won me over. 
  • //Seven// Zara Leopard Sandals {$50}: My leopard loafers have seen better days. I basically made money on them if you calculate the cost per wear, so new leopard sandals are justified. And how perfect are these Zara ones?!
Are you craving any of the above items as much as me?! 

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

San Francisco & Napa Valley

A couple of weeks ago, I made a trip out to San Francisco and Napa Valley with my sorority sisters for our dear friend's wedding. I haven't been with ALL of these girls {and Paul!} since our 2009 Homecoming, so this was such a special trip for me. Being 1000+ miles away from my best friends/sisters has not been easy. Actually, it's been incredibly hard. Thankfully, I've made the most wonderful friends here in Indianapolis and I don't know where I would be without them too. I know I'm one lucky girl, but I still miss my Arizona girlfriends every day. 

This trip flew by. We went to an all girls dinner in the city. Struggled to walk the hills in heels {props to you SF gals wearing heels every day - you're crazy}. Jenn and I sniffed out the nearest Zara. Got called mean names by a bum. Went wine tasting at V. Sattui Winery. Bought out V. Sattui Winery. Took Calistoga by surprise according to all the looks we received. Had my palm read by the iPhone. Got ready all together {which I have missed SOO much!}. Paid over $20 for a martini {thanks Tanabs!}. Watched one of our best friends tie the knot. Danced to "Cyclone" with the bride. All while laughing like we're back at Dirtbags singing "Sweet Caroline" and closing out the patio! 

I can't wait to go back to SF and of course, see my besties again. Here's a little massive photo diary of my trip! :)

 {Jenn & I}

/ Dress: F21 / Belt: H&M / Sandals: Dolce Vita / Bag: TJ Maxx / Sunglasses: Marc by Marc Jacobs / 
{Stopped by the Oakville Grocery Farmstand for awesome Sangria}
{The girls, Paul, & our wine guy}
{My other best, Coree}
{Take one is a keeper...}
{Take two...}
{Take three...we obviously enjoy each other's company}
{Anchors Away!}
 {Calistoga, California}
 {My contribution to the "I'm Happiest When..." tree}
 {These parasols saved the day}
{With the beautiful bride, Joey. All Delta Gammas in this picture!}
{Little foggy, but stopped at the Golden Gate Bridge for a quick pic!}


Monday, June 25, 2012

Insta-Fun #14

Good morning everyone! Hope the weekend treated you well and your Monday is off to a fab start! I planned on taking it incredibly easy this weekend to catch up on some R&R from my vacation {isn't that how it always happens - you need a vacay from your vacation?!}, but I remained pretty active hanging out with friends and family. I'm going to try and post every day this week, but no guarantees since my bed is looking pretty comfy at this point :) 

Hope you enjoy the rest of your Monday, as well as these snapshots from my week via my Instagram

{The most amazing Crème Brûlée french toast from Zest + my doodle}
{Got to put my wine and cheese plates from Napa to good use!}
{Dinner c/o my dad and I: cheese popovers, homemade mashed 
potatoes, asparagus wrapped in prosciutto& filet mignon 
cooked to perfection}
{Color blocked outfit inspired by the Friday's Fancies theme}
{Indians game at Victory Field}
{My niece turned 4 years old - she's such a little princess}
{Late night lake cruisin'}