Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Odds and Ends

I honestly thought it was Thursday all day on Tuesday. Sadly mistaken when I looked at my calendar and realized that I had only been at it a day and a half for the week. To be honest, I love these kinds of weeks though. The hustle and bustle can definitely be amazing, reminds me why I live in the city!

I renewed my lease for another year and I recently celebrated my second year anniversary of moving here, but I don't think the city will be a "forever" home for me. I thought for sure when I moved here it would be... but who knows. I kind of like the fact that I can kind of go wherever! That doesn't mean that I'm not beyond grateful for the things I can experience here... in fact, I feel like it makes me more appreciative because I don't know how many more falls or winters or springs or summers I'll have.

And this city really is pretty magical. As annoying, frustrating, and disgusting it can be, it's the magic that really makes it special. (The people, the opportunities, the hustle and the bustle.)

Some of the things I've been up to this week:


I mean, this face. Teddy's almost one and I can't believe it. He's growing up so fast and developing a funnier and funnier personality every day. He was super cute as a puppy, but I have to say... it's a lot more enjoyable to have a trained dog! (And he now sleeps until 7, which is so nice on the weekends.)


A Saturday morning treat: breakfast by myself. Maison Kayser is just down the street from my apartment and it's the best atmosphere, especially if you get there before the brunch crowd. Definitely the best way to kick off the weekend.


Amy and I hadn't seen each other in ages so we planned a fun little adventure on Sunday. An old-fashioned soda fountain shop opened up in the West Village called Hamilton's. It's incredibly cute. Perfect spot for (coffee) milkshakes and French fries and lots of catching up.



^^ Definition of magic in the city.

Wearing: Blazer // Dress (old J. Crew) // Monogrammed Crossbody (c/o) // Ballet Flats

Major highlight on Monday? Going to a screening of If I Stay. Chloe Grace Moretz, Jamie Blackley, and Gayle Forman (the author!) were all there. I read the book in preparation and really loved it; the movie did not disappoint. Warning: bring tissues.

A fun video interview and quick photo session (think sequins and leopard!) on Tuesday morning with BSmartGuide.com... Can't wait to share!


... and then one of my life dreams came true. I went to the Martha Stewart office. I wish my mom had been with me because I think she would have died. It is everything. An entire room of props...  any and everything you can think of times 39829. Plus, it was just an incredible office space. I couldn't believe how many employees there were and everyone's desk was exactly what you'd imagine for Martha Stewart employees. I was there for a photoshoot for the Martha Stewart line of pet products for Petsmart. It was like walking into a snow globe with puppies!!!!!!! Too much fun.



And then I wrapped up the day with oysters and drinks with Katie from Three Jane. I featured her amazing map necklaces on my blog a long time ago, but we had never officially met. She's so sweet and we really enjoyed Grand Banks– an oyster bar on a sail boat. So perfect. 

Phew! See what I mean about thinking it was Thursday?! How has your week been going?

xoxo
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Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Rag and Bone Cricket Sweater

My dream sweater. After seeing Ashley Benson wear this Rag & Bone sweater on the cover of Cosmo, I've been absolutely lusting after it. It's even better in person if you can believe it. The perfect weight to wear during a cool evening and the perfect drape for a casual, chic look. (Casual, chic might just be my new personal style motto.)


I know I've mentioned this before, but Nordstrom is definitely one of my favorite places to stock up on staples because they have all my favorite brands and designers. My mom and I always hit up Nordstrom when I'm home (and I always run into amazing blog readers there!)... and the online experience is just as great. Free shipping, free returns, and it's crazy fast.


Hello, perfect length. How adorable would the sweater be with leggings for study dates and coffee shop hopping?


I've seen it paired with skirts online before, but I think the jeans is a no-fuss option. Light wash during the summer and a darker wash when the seasons change.



One last thing about these shoes. These shoes. I had pink converse when I was younger and thought I was so cool. Pretty sure they just made my feet look giant and clownish. These Converse sneeks are the perfect combination of the classic shoe with feminine details. After three wears, they were completely broken in. PS They're priced amazingly and currently Nordstrom has a special price when you purchase two pairs.


Ray-Ban Aviators // Monogram Necklace (similar) // Cable Bracelet // Nail Polish



Thank you Nordstrom for sponsoring this post!
xoxo
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Monday, August 18, 2014

How to Get the Best Price for Textbooks

My freshman year at Georgetown, I made the huge mistake of buying textbooks from the bookstore on campus. Seriously, worst idea ever. I bought brand new books and would have been better off paying for them by promising them my first born child.

I gradually learned over time that I searching online could lead to better prices and I even rented a few textbooks throughout the year. With five classes a semester and at least two books per class, this search turned into essentially a full-time job. I'd have books in every cart with about 800 tabs open. (One year, I accidentally got two of the same textbooks and forgot one class altogether, whoops...)



Of course, I didn't hear about Slugbooks until after I was done with college textbook buying. (As the oldest sister in my family, I'm pretty used to having to figure things out the hard way and passing along the secret tips and tricks along after I've struggled and messed up 4972 times beforehand. #yourewelcomestacy) The process is basically the same as when you're searching for plane tickets online!


Once you get the textbook list from your school/class/professor, simply add the ISBN or title into Slugbooks and then it will tell you where you can get the absolute best price. You can even compare books, like different editions, by including multiple ISBNs.


Saves time and money! Don't forget to share with friends, roommates, sorority sisters, etc!

Thanks Slugbooks for sponsoring this post!
xoxo
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RECIPE: Blueberry Lemon Pancakes

Another great recipe from Louisa of Living Lou today! If you're reading this early enough, definitely consider whipping this up for a great Monday morning breakfast or pin it and save for a quiet weekend. My mouth is already watering!!!

*****
Blueberry Lemon Pancakes
by Louisa

Word on the street is that millennials spend more time planning brunch than we do actually eating it. Guilty as charged. I've always been a fan of brunch, well just breakfast foods in general. And I do spend quite a bit of time planning my brunches even though I have three favorite spots in Toronto and I hardly ever try anywhere new. What can I say, I'm a creature of habit. My sister used to live above of the cutest little diner (and I mean little, I think it had about five tables in it) and I'm so glad she doesn't live there anymore because I spent way too much money on their oatmeal and don't even get me started on their pancakes. You know you've got a problem when the chefs know you by name. 

So, when I was thinking of a yummy recipe to share, I immediately thought of brunch and then of pancakes because that's my go-to order. Do you ever make your own brunch at home? Get out the orange juice and spruce up regular pancakes with some blueberries and lemon. What I love about these pancakes is that they are a classic flavor combination and perfect for summer. You could also throw some chocolate chips in here because sometimes a girl just needs a little chocolate. 


A couple of tips for today: 

1. Freezer friendly!

Ok, this is my favorite thing about these pancakes; they are freezer friendly! What I like to do is cook a whole batch of these on the weekend, then I let them cool. Once they are cool I throw them into Ziplock bags and into the freezer. You can reheat them in the toaster for a quick weekday breakfast. Trust me on this one, there's nothing more luxurious than having pancakes on a Monday morning. 

2. Don't overmix the batter.

I'm sure you've seen this one before, but be careful not to overmix the batter. This over develops the gluten and you'll end up with rubbery pancakes. And don't worry if there are a few lumps in the batter, these will cook out. 

Blueberry Lemon Pancakes
(makes 12)

Ingredients:
2 cups all purpose flour
2 tbsp white sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
2 tsp lemon zest
1 3/4 cup milk
1 egg
3 tbsp melted unsalted butter
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup fresh blueberries
Vegetable oil for frying

Directions:

1. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt and lemon zest. 
2. In microwave safe bowl, heat milk until it's lukewarm - about 15-30 seconds. 
3. Whisk together warmed milk, egg, melted butter and vanilla extract. 
4. Pour liquid ingredients into dry ingredients and gently mix. Add in blueberries. Be careful not to overmix! 
5. Coat the pan in olive oil and heat to medium heat. Spoon batter into pan, cook for 2-3 minutes or until bubbles begin forming in the pancake batter. Flip and cook for another 1-2 minutes. 

Louisa's Blog | Instagram | Twitter 

xoxo
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Sunday, August 17, 2014

The BIG Lilly Pulitzer SALE!

Okay... guys. Remain calm. The HUGE Lilly Pulitzer sale starts tomorrow morning at 8am. Really, the best deals on Lilly Pulitzer items– this is their once-a-year big blow out sale.



The site almost always crashes and things sell out super fast. My tips for making the most of the sale:

1. Make an account today. Add your shipping information, your payment information, and all of that good stuff. It will make checking out super easy because things can literally sell out of your cart if you're spending precious moments typing that stubborn credit card number.

2. Sign on early. Don't wait until 7:59 to go to the site... get it up early and click the refresh button often as you near the 8am mark.

3. If you see something, buy it. Make multiple purchases versus adding everything into the cart because, again, things will sell out if you wait too long.

4. Don't panic and don't get worked up. Keep things in perspective.... it's a sale. A great sale, yes. But it's just clothes. The site will crash (it does every year). Something will sell out. Your favorite item might not be available in your size. It's. Okay. Every year these things happen and it's really embarrassing to see some people's reactions on Twitter/Facebook. The Lilly team IS doing their best to make it a great sale– it's in everybody's best interests!

xoxo
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