Easter Pinspiration

So is it true that life just flies by once you get older? When I was 22, I don’t remember feeling like I could blink and it would already be a new month. Since Easter quickly crept up on us I am completely unprepared. No decorations, no dying of eggs, an Easter “ideas” menu quickly jotted down and no outfit chosen I’m feeling a tad frazzled.

Thank god for Pinterest… What did we do before you?

Outfit’s

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Decor

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Easter Egg Ideas 

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Food

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Dessert

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Are you ready for Easter??

 

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Hoboken Blogger Meet-Up

Last night I stepped out of my comfort zone, away from my phone and Candy Crush Saga (kidding — but not really. please tell me I’m not alone in this addiction!?) and headed to Teak on the Hudson for a Hoboken Blogger Meet-Up.

HUGE thank you to Lynda for setting up this get together. I had already been reading a couple of the girls blogs for a while now, so it was great to finally meet them in person! It was also great to meet some unfamiliar faces and add the new-to-me blogs to my reading list.

We met at 7 to get a drink while waiting for everyone to arrive – The bar area at Teak is beautiful so if you ever come here for dinner, I suggest getting there early for a cocktail.

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Once we sat down for dinner, Lynda handed out chocolate to thank everyone for coming. She knows the way to a girls heart!

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Jillian and I couldn’t decide between sushi or the Chilean Sea Bass that our waiter had talked up during his intro, so we decided to go with both! We split the tuna cashew and avocado roll (with brown rice) and each ordered the Miso Glazed Chilean Sea Bass with zucchini/carrot ribbons and mashed potatoes.

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Both choices were amazing and I’m pretty sure I was the first one at the table to clean my plate. I was legit starving and our meals didn’t arrive til around 10pm (I’m usually getting in bed #granny). Don’t think I didn’t polish off that candy bar shortly after dinner was done 😉

It was so great to meet with a group of smart and beautiful women who have similar interests as myself — Whether it be shopping, fitness or healthy food, we all found something to talk about and had a really great time. I’m looking forward to the next meet-up!

photo (4)Photo Credit: Jen

Clockwise: Jillian, Amanda , Jen, Alexandra, Kristin, Tiffany, Lynda, Brittany, me — and Sabrina who must have gotten cut off on accident :/

If you’re a Hoboken blogger, feel free to email one of us so we can include you in the next meet-up!

 

 

 

 

WIAW – Cadbury Egg Blondies

Happy Wednesday! I have QUITE the recipe for you and just a heads up — it’s NOT healthy 🙂 But first let’s get to WIAW. As always thanks to Jenn for hosting!

WIAW GOES GREEN

Breakfast: Burnt Strawberry Protein Pancake {egg whites, protein powder, ground flax, cinnamon, almond milk, strawberries and greek yogurt}

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Lunch: Mason Jar Salad {vegan dijon dressing: (evoo, dijon, agave, water) red quinoa, shrimp, cucumber, avocado & spring mix

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Dinner: Chickpea Pot Pie (cornbread topping) in the crockpot

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Dessert: Cadbury Egg Blondie

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If we’re talking candy, Easter is my favorite Holiday! Reese’s eggs, Cadbury eggs (the hard ones), Chocolate Hollow Bunnies & Peeps — Everything just tastes better in egg form. When I was younger (and had a speedy metabolism) I would eat an entire package a day to myself. Since I can’t do that now, I decided to make a dessert out of them.

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Cadbury Egg Blondies

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup melted butter
  • 2 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 1/2 cup All Purpose flour
  • 2 t. baking powder
  • 1 t. coarse sea salt
  • 1 large bag of Cadbury Chocolate Eggs (hard)
  • 1 cup milk chocolate chips
  • 1 t. vanilla
  • also for garnish 1/2 cup melted chocolate chips

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350degrees
  • Grease 9×13 baking pan
  • In medium sized bowl combine flour, baking powder and salt, whisking together.
  • In mixing bowl combine butter and brown sugar on low speed until smooth.
  • Add eggs one at a time continuing on low speed.
  • Add vanilla
  • Slowly add the the flour mixture to the butter mixture until just combined.
  • Add 3/4 bag of cadbury eggs and chocolate chips stirring with wooden spoon.
  • Spread batter into prepared pan and bake approx 25-30 minutes until they are set.
  • Toothpick will come out slightly gooey.  Be careful not to overcook.
  • When removed from oven sprinkled reserved cadbury eggs on top and drizzle with melted chocolate.

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PS – I couldn’t resist cutting into these — Wait 30 minutes before slicing. The rest of them didn’t break — Only the one I took the picture of and burnt my mouth with because I’m impatient 🙂

Color of the Year: Emerald

According to fashion magazines, stylists and department stores – the color of the year is Emerald Green. Oddly enough, I own nothing of this color. I did a little research the other night and found a ton of cute options!

Color of the year: Emerald
Clockwise:
Max & Chloe Necklace – I’m loving chunky necklaces like this. They add a pop of color to a casual outfit or dress up your favorite LBD
BCBG Sweatheart Dress – BCBG knocks it out of the park with this look
JINsoon Nailpolish –  I normally wouldn’t wear this dark of a color on my nails but maybe one finger or my toes next fall
Luli Fama Bikini – Sexy bikini for the summer
Steven by Steve Madden Pumps – My new favorite pump. In love with these.
Forever 21 Metallic Scarf – Since it’s still basically winter (COME ON SPRING), scarves are still acceptable. This one is light enough to carry into spring weather as well
Tory Burch Wrap Bracelet – Tory Burch is killing it with the Emerald Green this year.
Sheriff & Cherry Sunglasses – Love these — but don’t wear them with the bikini! Green on green is a n0-no.
Tory Burch Tote – Classy yet trendy. I have this bag in camel and it’s my absolute favorite!

Questions: Do you own any items in this years color of the year?

Sunday Stuff – 3/24

via iPhone

photo (3) Couldn’t be in DC this morning so ran our own 5k in memory of my Uncle Chuck. #TEAMSCHWINK

photo (2) Refuel: Money Shot

photo (4) Temptation at Church. Adam was a sucker

photo (5)Hoboken

photo (6)Chipotle for lunch. Apparently they charge $2.15 for guacamole now — Unless you get a vegetarian salad! Score for vegetarians 🙂

photo (15) Baking

photo (9) aka making a mess

photo (8)It’s a wonder any of these even got in my batter

photo (10) MMMMMMMMMMMM

photo (12)Recipe on Wednesday 🙂

photo (7) Dinner Prep

photo (14)Cornbread Chickpea Pot Pie

photo (13) Very delicious even though it’s an unappetizing photo

photo (1) Pier1 is ready for Spring. WHERE ARE YOU!?

If you missed it: Weekend Post

Other Things to do in Palm Beach, Florida

 

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Catch a sunrise on Juno Pier (my dad’s favorite)

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Can’t beat the view.

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Get the potatoes at Palm Beach Cafe. BEST I’ve ever had.

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Visit Worth Ave.

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Get the stuffed french toast at Sara’s Kitchen

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Go for a run (gotta work off that french toast)

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Enjoy fresh lunches at the pool

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Try something new (falafel wrap)

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Get a tan.

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Go to the Garden’s Mall when you’re too burnt to lay out anymore.

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Get Breakfast in Bed (egg whites, goat cheese, spinach, roasted red peppers and chilis on naan bread)

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Spend time with your loved ones.

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especially your favorite one ❤

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Catch a sunset.

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Have lunch at one of the coolest spots ever

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Eat as much avocado as you can.

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Play Golf

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Take walks on the beach.

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and of course, relax and get a spa treatment… You deserve it.

**For other restaurants we visited see 1, 2 & 3**

Cafe Chardonnay

Cafe Chardonnay came highly recommended to us by my Aunt so we made reservations for Saturday night.

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We were seated the second we walked in ( I love when places don’t make you wait when you’ve made a reservation!) on their upper level with a balcony view of the entire restaurant.

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They brought a warm bread basket with a baba ghanoush spread at the same time they delivered our drinks. We loved the dip and thought it was a nice (healthy) alternative to butter.

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We ordered the Caesar salad and Lobster Bisque appetizers to split with each other. The lobster bisque soup had TONS of lobster chunks and wasn’t heavy to the point where it hurt my stomach.

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The Caesar Salad was a winner too. I don’t like Caesar’s at too many places since the dressing is usually heavy, but this one was perfect.

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We skipped choosing from the regular menu and went with specials of the night. I chose lobster & scallops with a corn ragout. Adam chose the rib eye – The kid loves his steak! My lobster & scallops dish was phenomenal. It was a little heavy so I only ate about half but the flavors really mixed well. There was more lobster than I anticipated and the scallops were perfectly sautéed.

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Adam’s steak was just “OK”. Personally, I don’t think steak should be ordered anywhere other than a steakhouse. I think he just got excited for the possibility of having red meat ( I never cook it) and ordered it right away. He said it wasn’t horrible, but it wasn’t amazing. His plate was still clean!

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Per usual, we ordered dessert. The table next to us had a HUGE piece of deep dish apple pie a la mode that I eyed up during dinner. It was nothing like I’ve ever seen before, but we ultimately went with the cheesecake at Adam’s request.

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The homemade cheesecake was topped with blueberries and drizzled with raspberry sauce. To.Die.For. This was no small piece and we were stuffed before it even came out. Somehow we managed to clean the plate… Shocker, I know.

While Cafe Chardonnay is not as “trendy” as Coolinary Cafe & Christopher’s Kitchen, (we have a thing for C named restaurants?) it’s one of those sophisticated restaurants that serves consistently classic yet fresh food, has knowledgeable and attentive servers and isn’t overly pricey (like places in Palm Beach).

That’s my last restaurant review from Florida but I do plan on making a small post on other key places to check out while on vacation there!

Have a good weekend 🙂

How to make the perfect mason jar salad

Happy Friday!

This week I decided to try the whole mason jar salad trend. I wanted to pack more veggies into my diet and salads for lunch (I usually eat leftover dinner or tuna fish) seemed like my best bet.

I’m not sure why I have a plethora of mason jars in our tiny apartment but I put em to good use this week!

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Salad Creations:

(add ingredients into mason jar from left to right)

1. Shrimp, Quinoa & Arugula Salad: vegan dijon dressing (dijon, evoo, water, pepper & agave) , quinoa, cucumber, shrimp, avocado, arugula

2. Fruit & Goat Cheese Salad: vegan poppyseed dressing (dijon, agave, poppy seeds, lime, water, salt, pepper ), quinoa, strawberries, blueberries, goat cheese, spinach *candied nuts on the side*

3. Asian Salad: vegan asian dressing (lemon, evoo, sesame oil, sesame seeds, salt, water, stevia ), shredded carrots, edamame, sprouts, red pepper, chicken, sesame seeds, mixed greens

4. Greek Salad: vegan greek dressing (evoo, garlic powder, onion powder, dijon, red wine vinegar, basil, salt, pepper), whole wheat pasta, cucumber, tomato, olives, chickpeas, feta, romaine

5. Caprese Salad: vegan balsamic dressing (balsamic vinegar, evoo, salt, pepper ), whole wheat pasta, tomatoes, mozzarella, spinach, basil

6. Taco Salad: spicy creamy dressing (greek yogurt, spicy salsa), black beans, corn, tomatoes avocado, romaine, mexican cheese *crushed tortilla chips on the side*

Really, the possibilities are endless but here are some tips to follow.

  •  Keep the dressing on the bottom to make sure none of your ingredients get soggy.
  • Put your hard vegetables (or grains) in second to marinate in the dressing
  • Pack your ingredients in tightly – It leaves less room for condensation!
  • Bring a bowl or a plate (if your work doesn’t provide them) so you can dump out your salad and toss the dressing into it
  • Make ahead on Sunday for the entire week – It will stay fresh til Friday – I promise!
  • If you’re adding nuts, chips or croutons bring them in a separate baggy. There is a high chance they will get soggy.

 

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Follow this rule of thumb to make your own creations!

Questions: Have you tested out the mason jar salad trend? If so, what was your favorite creation? 

Christopher’s Kitchen

In between the indulging we did manage to sneak in a few healthy meals. Saturday afternoon we headed to Christopher’s Kitchen for lunch outside on their patio.

030 I’m so artsy.

Christopher’s Kitchen is a raw vegan restaurant in Palm Beach Gardens. They have everything from fresh juices to tacos to ice cream sundaes. We browsed the menu for 10 minutes before making final decisions. There were so many options to choose from so I wanted to make sure we were making the best choice.

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I went with the Florida Chopped salad. There is something about a chopped salad that makes it 10x more enjoyable. My salad had sunflower sprouts, sprouted garbanzo beans & lentils, kale, romaine, apple, cranberries, herbs, avocado and pumpkin seeds with dijon dressing.

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Fabulous and refreshing.

Adam ordered the baby dragon bowl which had zucchini noodles, broccoli, red pepper, bok choy, cilantro, sesame seeds, almonds, and was tossed in five spice dressing.

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He couldn’t wait to dig in to his vegan lunch 😉

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He surprisingly liked it (a lot!) and finished the entire bowl. It had a nice kick to it and he’s a sucker for spicy foods so I’m glad they had something to please his meat-eating palette.

Good thing the lunch was light because I wasn’t leaving there without trying dessert! We chose the Cinnamon Sundae which was cinnamon maple sauce, candied pecans, crushed caramel bark and bananas w/ vanilla ice cream. Ummmmmmm, can you even handle the description?

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Vegan has never tasted so good and I can now die happy.

I also noticed they had a pastry case inside and mentally noted we needed to stop back in before heading back to New Jersey.

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On our way to the airport I picked up a few sweet treats (for myself) including 1 almond butter ball, 1 peppermint patty and 2 pieces of salted caramel chocolate bark.

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In an attempt to eat something besides dessert for dinner I also bought a freshly pressed juice (watermelon + mint) and an arugula and quinoa salad.

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Another winner in our book. The only thing I wish is that it was a bit less expensive. I don’t mind paying for good quality food but this isn’t somewhere I could eat daily on my food budget!

 

Coolinary Cafe

You know the best meal you’ve ever eaten? Well take that and times it by 3. Coolinary Cafe is riding high on my list of best foods ever at the moment and it’s going to take a lot for someone to knock it down.

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They don’t take reservations (unless you’re a party of 6+) and it’s tiny inside so expect to wait for a table. We waited about 20 minutes and were seated at the bar. In my opinion, this seat was perfect! We had a clear view of the open kitchen and watched every meal made fresh.

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The concept here is farm to table and they have a list of  local farms they use hanging up in the restaurant.

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After perusing the menu we decided to start with the Crispy Fried Florida Shrimp ( artichoke, cashew and green chili goat cheese aioli) and the Lump Crab Salad (jicima, mango & avocado).

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I don’t eat fried foods often, but when I do — I make sure it’s worth it. These are worth it and I would eat these every single day even if it means I gain 20 lbs.

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The salad was light and they surely didn’t skip on the lump crab (or avocado!), so I was obviously a fan.

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Adam knew what he was ordering for dinner before we even left New Jersey, Boneless Southern Fried Chicken with Jalapeno Cheddar Waffles.

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You know I am not a meat eater but I had to try this meal. Every single table had at least one person (if not all) order this and it was SUCH a good choice. The sweet yet spicy waffle was absolutely to die for and like nothing we have ever tried before.

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 I ordered a blackened cobia sandwich and requested more of the goat cheese aioli to spread on the bun. I couldn’t get enough of it!

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Macaroni & Cheese was our side of choice. Melt in your mouth, cheesey, ooey gooey goodness. It was the perfect southern dish and had so much flavor! We almost ordered vegetables ” to be healthy” but then I thought while were here, we should indulge. Good choice Alyssa, good choice.

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After loving everything we ate there was just no possible way to pass up dessert. See, I told you I needed that sugar detox! We ordered angel food cake with vanilla ice cream, caramel topping, blueberries and whipped cream. Everything including the ice cream and whipped cream was homemade and it was surprisingly light and didn’t leave us with that uncomfortable, un-button your pants in the car type of feeling.

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Next time we go to Palm Beach, Florida this will definitely be one of our first stops. If you’re ever in town, you need to make it one of yours too!

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