Pinspiration – 11/30

My most recent fashion pin. This would be perfect for Happy Hour with friends, a stroll in Napa Valley or sight-seeing in a city. See below on how to recreate this outfit on a budget. *You can follow me on pinterest here*

pinspiration

Pinterest Version

pinspiration - 2

My Version

Fedora – Need Supply
Top – J. Crew
Brooch – Forever 21
Pants – 6pm (sale)
Pumps – Michael Kors (sale!)
Clutch – Dorothy Perkins (sale!)

I’m digging trousers lately – Anyone else in on this trend??

Happy Friday!

Questions: Whats on your agenda this weekend? We get to move back into our apartment (eeeeek!)

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50 Calorie Pumpkin Cookies

When it comes to sweets I’m like Britney singing “Gimme gimme more”.

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I can never “just have a taste.” Seriously, WHO DOES THAT?

So I trick myself by making healthier and smaller cookies. I can have 4 after dinner and not feel like I need to run a marathon the next day.

029  (White Chocolate is totally healthy.)

I’m actually embarrassed to call this a recipe since there are only 4 ingredients but they’re so good I have to share!

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50 Calorie White Chocolate Pumpkin Cookies

Ingredients 

  • 1 box of Spice Cake Mix
  • 1 can or Organic Pumpkin Puree, Chilled
  • 1/2 of a bag of White Chocolate Chips
  • 1 tsp of Pumpkin Pie Spice

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Directions

  • Stir pumpkin puree, pumpkin pie spice and cake box mix until smooth
  • Add white chocolate chips
  • Scoop on to a non-stick baking tray
  • Bake each batch at 350 degrees for 10 minutes

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Nothing like sharing this recipe with you on the last day of November, eh? I’ll make it up to you in December with lots and lots of cookies! I can’t promise they’ll be healthy though… That’s what January is for!

Questions: Are you a sweet or salty person?

Eggcellence

Thank you for all of your kind words on my last post. Encouraging words and stories from others are whats helping keep a smile on my face!

On Tuesday we had a small service for my dad with our family that was local. I’m so glad the priest was able to fit us in because it gave us some closure during this difficult time. I’ve found the best way (for me) to cope is to go on with your everyday life and get back into a routine. Sitting around eating cookie dough in your pajamas in bed wont make you feel better. Not that I know from experience or anything…

After the service we all headed to Eggcellence for brunch in Annapolis. Not many places serve breakfast during the week so this was an eggcelent (har, har) find!

 

The restaurant is very small but had a large room that was able to accommodate the size of our 25 person party.


Fresh strawberry & blackberry jam is placed on each table so I HAD to order a muffin to give them a taste test.

Each day they have a fresh muffin selection. Tuesday’s flavors were chocolate coconut banana or a raspberry walnut. We went with the raspberry walnut.


Can you see the brown sugar crystals? I would definitely recommend getting this as a “starter”.

For breakfast I ordered the Maryland Omelet which included egg whites, crab meat, asparagus, feta cheese & topped with avocado. You had your choice of fruit or breakfast potatoes and I went the starch route. Their breakfast potatoes are baked in olive oil and have the perfect amount of seasoning on them.

Adam went with the French Toast and sausage. This meal is fool-proof.

Challah bread, dipped in eggs, pan-fried with butter, syrup and powdered sugar on top is always a winner!

My Aunt ordered the Mediterranean baked eggs which also looked phenomenal.


What I liked about this restaurant is they give you quality items and reasonable portions. You can tell everything is freshly made and you won’t leave there hungry or overly stuffed. If you’re in Annapolis – check them out!

Also wanted to say a big thank you to my wonderful friends Jessie & Michelle for the treats and surprises.

Hard times get easier when you have a great support system.

Questions: Whats your favorite breakfast spot? Is it a chain or a one of a kind?

My Worst Nightmare

As I was getting into bed after stuffing myself full to the brim for the 2nd day in a row, I got a phone call.

One of the phone calls you get where you’re scared to answer because you know it’s not good news.

My dad had passed away.

There’s so many thoughts that run through your head in this second while your trying to grasp what the other person just said. Wait, is this a nightmare? How? Was he alone? Was he in pain? Why? Why? WHY?

I’m mad. I’m sad. I’m so confused.

There are so many things I’ll remember my dad by but I’ll share just a few.

His love for sunrises and how he sent me a picture of one just about every single morning. I’m hoping he is enjoying the sunrises in every time zone in Heaven.

The way he practiced his pirate talking on “National Talk like a Pirate Day”. I bet he’ll be a pirate in his next life.

How passionate he was when he would travel. He was so interested to see what the unfamiliar city had to offer and would text me pictures all day long with fun facts.

The proud look he had when he walked me down the aisle less than 2 months ago.

The way he would tell me which brand new movies I should see and which ones I shouldn’t waste my time on. He was always spot on!

The beautiful speech he gave at our rehearsal dinner. I knew he was nervous, but he didn’t let it show.

When he sent me random emails to tell me a memory about my childhood that I had temporarily forgotten. Those always put a smile on my face.

How he called everyone he liked a “cool cat” or said “allllllllllrighty then” when he wanted you to change the subject.

The fact that I knew I was always going to get a beautiful bouquet on my birthday.

and most importantly,

how much he loved my brothers and I.

There’s nothing like knowing someone loves you unconditionally.

I know we have another guardian angel to watch over us…

I love you so so so SO much Dad.

Pinspiration Style – 11/23

My most recent fashion pin . This would be perfect for a casual day at work, Thanksgiving with the family or a lunch with friends. See below on how to recreate this outfit on a budget. *You can follow me on pinterest here*

Pinterest Version

My Affordable Version

Tan Dress – Victorias Secret 
Skinny Tan Belt – Target
Leopard Scarf – Asos (Sale!)
Brown Boots – Amazon (sale!)
Brown Purse – Kardashian Collection
3 stone ring – Francesca’s
Eyeshadow – Forever21

I will admit – The second dress is definitely not as cute as the first one… But when your on a budget, you do what you can!

Happy Friday!

Pumpkin Pie Chia Seed Pudding

Yesterday started and ended with affirmations that life is truly beautiful. We’re always moving from one place to the next, filling up even our days off with attending a birthday brunch followed up with meeting a friend for lunch and then deciding you’re going to make 200 cookies for your work that night. It’s so cliche, but we need to take a second to stop and smell the roses. Take a personal day to unwind.

I started off my morning with my Yogi Tea and the reminder I am beautiful, I am bountiful, I am blissful.

I took some “me” time and checked out a local pottery painting place.

They’ll be out of the kiln by next Tuesday but they’re far from perfect! I guess I’ll have to go back and practice again 😉

Dinner was pizza! We usually save Fridays for Pizza Friday but with Thanksgiving this week we decided to celebrate early.

I added caramelized onions and chickpeas to my side, chicken to his and topped with BBQ sauce and a Mexican blend of cheeses.

Before

After

We bought the garlic & herb crust from Trader Joe’s and it crisped up perfectly! I’ve had trouble with their whole wheat in the past so we may just stick to this.

I know it seems like a weird combination of flavors but it works – try it out!

Since we only used the chickpeas for half of the pizza I decided to roast the remaining few.

Olive Oil, Salt, Pepper, Garlic Powder & Paprika – Baked at 425 degrees for 30 minutes. Warning: These are addictive.

Dessert was also weird. Maybe I’m just weird?

But it tasted good! Dessert without added sugar and preservatives always gets a W in my book.

Pumpkin Pie Chia Seed Pudding

Ingredients:

2tbsp White Chia Seeds
1/2 cup Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk
1 tsp Agave Nectar
1 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice
1 Honey Graham cracker

Directions:

Mix everything (besides graham cracker) in bowl.
Refrigerate for 3 or more hours.
Crush 1/2 of your graham cracker into the pudding and use the other half for scooping.

Is there a better way to end a day than with a healthy (great tasting) dessert and a beautiful sunset?

Make today’s workout AMAZING so you can enjoy tomorrow’s food  feast without feeling guilty.

QUESTIONS: What weird combinations of food do you enjoy?

Bachelorette Party Recap

My MOH planned the perfect trip to Miami for my bachelorette party! We stayed at a boutique hotel I had visited once before, The Clinton, in South Beach.

On the way down my fiance (now husband) hooked me up with first class seating! I told him he’s now screwed because I refuse to ever fly peasant status again.

He also sent a bottle of champagne to the room upon arrival. What a doll.

After a quick change and a mimosa or two, we went straight to the beach to soak up some sun!

When we got back to the room my girls had decorated and filled a beach bag with items for my honeymoon.

Sweetest.Girls.Ever.

Our first night consisted of dinner at a local spot on the water and continued with a cruise ride to see celebrity houses!

Scarface house

After a few drinks and some running around like we don’t get out much, we got all dolled up to head to LIV.

LIV is the best club I’ve EVER been to. The music and the atmosphere made being awake for 24 hours worth it. I totally can’t hang anymore.

The next day my friend Jordin surprised me by joining us! We headed off to lunch on Ocean Drive and the place was just meh. The problem about South Beach restaurants is they automatically add 18% gratuity on every bill so they just don’t care to give good service.

We caught cabs to Perry’s Pool Party where we might have had a little too much fun?

Gorgeous View

We headed back to the hotel for a power nap because we still had a big night ahead of us! Jessica (my MOH) made reservations at Sushi Samba for dinner, which was amazing!

Christmas Tree of Drinks

Somehow during dinner we talked our way into getting into LIV for Swedish House Mafia!

Amazing night. Amazing trip. Amazing friends.

Can we do it all over again?

Questions: Where is your favorite place to take a girls trip?

It’s a….

On Friday night the whole family headed over to my Grandma’s for my Aunt Wendy’s birthday (ugh, are we done celebrating her yet!? 😉 ). This birthday party was extra fun because we were finding out if we were getting a new baby girl or boy cousin.

I have been the only girl cousin for TWENTY EIGHT years!! We are so due for another girl…

We waited what felt like forever to find out if it was a boy or a girl. We took a poll and the boy guesses beat out the girls by 2!

They brought out the cupcakes to tell the story

Whoops, I was the last one to grab a cupcake

 Don’t be fooled by the blue.. It’s a girl!

Congratulations to the parents-to-be!

Toby (the dog) is not excited for the shaft he is going to receive.

Earlier in the day I met up with my girlfriend Kendra and her angel baby for lunch at Zoe’s.

Isn’t she adorable? She was so well-behaved at lunch while we ate our favorite salads.

I’m not kidding when I say I could eat this every.single.day. Thanks again, Kendra for lunch!

To round out my girly day I picked up my favorite flower girls for a spend the night.

Nothing like doing make-up at 6:30 am… They’re lucky I love them!

Questions: Are there more boys or girls in your family?

Vin 909

Thursday night we celebrated my Aunt’s birthday at a new(er) restaurant downtown Annapolis, Vin 909.

The restaurant was a small house in a neighborhood. They didn’t take reservations so we grabbed a seat in the lounge area next to the fireplace.

The decor was very comfy with bits of an Annapolis theme (yachts etc). We took a look at the drink menu (wines & beers only) and decided we would just have dinner in the lounge area.

Birthday Girl and her “baby” 

We chose a few cheese plates as an appetizer and the cheeses were simply out of this world! I am usually not a cheese snacker but I couldn’t stop spreading the brie on bread!

 

I heard their flatbread pizza’s were amazing so I decided to split the Autumn Harvest Pizza & Beet Salad with my Grandma.

   

Butternut squash, goat cheese, sage & balsamic glaze topped our flatbread and it was truly one of the best pizza’s I’ve experienced! Another thing that makes this restaurant one of a kind, is the local farm fresh and organic products they choose. You can tell that everything’s made right before they set it on your table and I always appreciate to know what I’m paying for wasn’t frozen ahead of time.

Dinner was almost perfect… Unfortunately, we had a man who stood in front of our table for the entire 2 hours talking very LOUDLY on his cell phone. “Oh you’ve always been my favorite” – “How’s Cindy?” – “Yeah, I miss you too”. I wish someone would’ve asked him to move outside if he was going sit on his phone the entire night!

We sat and chatted for a while and then I sneaked away to request dessert for the birthday girl!

I am going to pat myself on the back for choosing such an amazing dessert!

Chocolate Pot de Creme, which was a salted dark chocolate mousse and ganache in one.

If you live in the Annapolis area, check this restaurant out! There will most likely be a wait – but it’s worth it!

Questions: What is the longest wait time you would wait for a table at a restaurant?

 

Sunday Stuff – 11/18

Breakfast @ the hotel. Egg Whites, Fruit & Potatoes

 

Greek Yogurt with Granola 

 

Granola Toppings

Packed Elevator 

 

Drive home from Harrisburg, PA

 

Yes, Christmas music ALREADY!

 

Lunch @ a local bar to watch the Redskins game

 

Ice Cold Beer 

 

Chicken Wings

 

Broccoli Poppers 

 

REDSKINS WIN!!! (Sorry Jace & Jess) 

 

Dinner – Whole Wheat Pasta & Meatless Meatballs

Questions: What did your Sunday consist of?