Friday, February 28, 2014

Five on Friday - My Favorite Blogs

I'm linking up with my favs April at A. Liz Adventures and Christina at Carolina Charm for.....
Whenever I say "I read about this cool        blank          on a blog" my husband just rolls his eyes because it happens so often. People's reviews and opinions are my favorite posts to read. I love to hear what products people use, restaurants around the country they frequent, and overall tips to make life more fun/easy/enjoyable. And it's even better when you see something and immediately say "I've got to try that!" So I thought, as a way of thanks, I would put together a list of some things I've taken away from reading other blogs.

The Skimm from A. Liz Adventures
I love this daily new email. I am embarrassingly unaware about what is going on in the world. If it wasn't on the front page of Yahoo, I didn't know about it. So when April mentioned this email I signed up that day and have even had my Mom and coworkers subscribe to it. The writing is so witty and I like that they cover world events and random other things like sports, fashion, and entertainment.

Parsley Plus from Carolina Charm
I think fresh herbs are some of my favorite smells, so when Christina mentioned this cleaner I knew I had to have it. I love it! It makes me want to clean sometimes, which is a big deal since I hate to clean. I like that doesn't have a strong perfume or chemically scent and it's all natural.

Garnet and Black Attire from Fried Green Pickles
Megan is my main source for finding cute Gamecock tailgating clothes. In South Carolina we take football seriously, but we want to look good doing it. She has great taste and features items from accessible places like Target and Forever 21. A Gamecock girl has to stock her closet with lots of gameday options and I've stolen a couple ideas from her.

Towels from Classic Annie
We got some beautiful new towels when we got married and after two washes I was thoroughly disappointed. Why is it so hard to find nice, soft towels that don't shed like crazy and don't fade? Thankfully she did a great post about her favorite towels and those Lands End towels have been on my Christmas list since.

Keeping Flowers Gorgeous from Dee's Adventures
Dee shared one of my favorite flower tips, put fresh cut flowers in a vase of ginger ale. It's so simple, but definitely would have never thought of it. The flowers stay fresh and beautiful for a really long time and if I bother with fresh flowers they better last a while.

What ideas and items have you taken away from other blogs?

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Diet Coke Brownies

It is amazing how many times I have seen this recipe on blogs or Pinterest and haven't tried it until now. I love brownies so much, but once you look at the nutritional details you feel awful for eating them. So I tried this recipe and was shocked that the taste was still spot on, but the calories and fat were greatly reduced. Now, this does not make them healthy by any means, they simply aren't as bad as when you use eggs and oil.
Kelly at Eat Yourself Skinny has great step by step instructions and some tips.
All you need is a can of diet coke and brownie mix. That is it!!!!!

Go makes these now!
P.S. I had my husband try them and he couldn't tell the difference either.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Spring Nails

I am so ready for spring and I love all the new, bright nail colors. Where do I start?

Essie Resort Fling
And then for maybe a Gamecock baseball game, I love this idea from the Nicole Miller show.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Five on Friday

I'm linking up with my favs April at A. Liz Adventures and Christina at Carolina Charm for.....
I traveled for business for the first time this week. I've never had a job that required some time out of the office and I really enjoyed it. I went to Charlotte, NC for a full day of meetings and networking, but had a blast visiting the city Andy and I used to live in. I got to visit two of my very favorite places, Cowfish for their tuna nachos and Amelie's for a couple pretty macaroons and salted caramel brownies, which I brought home for the husband.
Also, while I was in Charlotte, I stopped by the Junior League consignment shop to see if I could pick up some Lilly items for spring. I found some gorgeous piece but nothing was fitting right so I left empty handed. Is everyone else starting to vamp up their spring wardrobe?
It was 82 degrees in Columbia, SC yesterday! I can't believe a week ago we were stuck inside with snow and ice on the ground. I got home yesterday from work, threw on some sweats and started working in the yard. I couldn't stand yard work as a kid, but now that it is my yard I can't wait to do stuff. The previous owner of our house let everything totally overgrow so we spend our time riping everything out. However I have big dreams for the yard, hopefully we can make some of it happen this spring.
Home and hydrangeas of the late Penny McHenry.
We tried Gwyneth Paltrow's Lettuce Wraps last night, that I got from Miss Dixie and Designer Bags and Dirty Diapers. We really liked them, especially because they are low carb, but I felt like it needed one more element. I did forget the carrots so maybe that was it. Anyone ever made Lettuce Wraps at home?
I read the most wonderful book last weekend called Sparkly Green Earrings by Melanie Shankle. I really didn't know anything about it when I picked it up, but read the entire book in an afternoon. (That is a HUGE deal for me because I'm a crazy slow reader.) It's about motherhood and all the very common, funny experiences that come with it. I quickly handed it off to my mom, who loved it, and I just sent it to a friend who is expecting her first child next week. Go and pick this book up now!
Have a fabulous weekend!

Monday, February 17, 2014

Valentine's Day

I hope everyone had a fabulous Valentine's Day!

Andy and I had our second annual Valentine's Day date at home this year. We went to Fresh Market (which we love, but can't afford on a regular basis) and picked up steaks, potatoes, asparagus, and fancy desserts. A friend told us about having a great date at home last year and we instantly loved the idea. We went all out at the grocery store and still didn't spend as much as we would have at a restaurant, plus no wait or reservations required.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Five on Friday

Five on Friday - Snowed In Edition
I'm linking up with my favs April at A. Liz Adventures and Christina at Carolina Charm for.....
Well we had our second winter storm of the season. I was sent home Tuesday afternoon and have been here ever since. This storm was different than just a little snow. We had freezing rain/ice pellets for the first day, that froze over night, then we had snow, then everything became a huge sheet of ice. Thankfully we never lost power and everyone was safe. I think I've had enough of winter, bring on spring!

To get through this stretch of days cooped up inside I've read my latest book, Ball of Fire: The Tumultuous Life and Comic Art of Lucille Ball.
I have eating lots of my new favorite candy from Trader Joes: Fruit Jellies.
We have watched the entire first and second season of New Girl on Netflix.
I made my favorite soup in the whole world, Bobby Flay's Tex Mex  Chicken Taco Soup. It is so good. It makes a ton, so I usually freeze a couple servings which is always handy.
I hope everyone has a fabulous Valentine's Day!!!!!

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Has Anyone Tried ........?

I have run across a couple things lately that have made me wonder "Has anyone tried this before"?

Stitch Fix - Personal Stylist
This sounds like Birchbox for clothes. You pay $20 and they send you a box of clothes and jewelry every month. Each client fills out a form about their style so they know what to send you. You keep what you like and ship back what you don't in a pre-paid bag. Then you pay the balance for the items you keep. From the blog posts I've found about this company their stuff looks cute but does it take the fun out of shopping?
stitch fix logo

Bare Minerals
I realize this has been around for ages, but I don't know anyone who actually uses it. I love the idea that there is no liquid foundation and was thinking this might be perfect for those hot South Carolina summers. But does it cover and even out skin tone? Does it last more than 5 minutes?

Polyblend Grout Renew
Our house is over fifty years old and is in pretty good shape. However the bathrooms need some updating. Thankfully we aren't dealing with pink, blue, or mint green tiles but the grout is completely discolored. I saw this product on Young House Love and I'm very intriged. However I can't draw a straight line for my life. Is this stuff hard to use and does it last?

Monday, February 10, 2014

Weekend in Review

I hope everyone had a fabulous weekend!

We made homemade pizza Friday night and used Trader Joe's garlic and herb pizza dough for the crust. It was amazing and I highly recommend it. We then watched the whole opening ceremony of the Olympics. I thought it was pretty good, however very long as usual. I was appalled to learn that the only events going on in the bazillion dollar arena was the opening and closing ceremony. Could they not come up with any other use for it?

Saturday we treated ourselves to brunch at Cafe Strudel in Columbia, SC and both had the Sunrise Burrito, which was so good! Totally worth the 30 minute wait. We went to a couple antique stores and made a Target run. Nice and relaxing.

Sunday I woke up with a cold. It's been going around the office and I was hoping to avoid it, but no luck. Anyone have a remedy for a stuffy/running nose?

Friday, February 7, 2014

Five on Friday

I'm linking up with my favs April at A. Liz Adventures and Christina at Carolina Charm for.....
I finally got around to following A Liz Adventures' advice and bought a Revlon Colorstay Ultimate Liquid Lipstick. I went very safe and got it in Miracle Mauve and I love it! This lipcolor stays on for hours! Eat, drink, chatter for hours and this stuff is still with you. I do add chapstick or clear gloss throughout the day to add moisture and shine but the color lasts. I'm in love and I'm already debating which color to get next.
This morning I treated myself to a Starbucks chia tea latte and when I grabbed my drink the guy behind the counter said "I hope you have the best day ever"! I laughed and said "You too" and went on my merry way. I smiled all the way to the office and was really grateful that this random person started my day off so well. So everyone raise you green and white coffee cups and cheers to the super cool barista at the 5 Points Starbucks!
I just found a company called I Crave Jewels and they have the best stuff. I am serious lusting over a bunch of their pieces. Why did I not find this place before Christmas and my birthday?
Radiant Orchid and Gold Statement Necklace
The "Shabby Chic" Collection Shabby Ombré Necklace

I'm super excited about the opening ceremony for the Olympics today. We watched a few events last nights since they had some scheduling issues, kinda weird but whatever. I just love everything about the Olympics and can't wait to, hopefully, bring home the gold!
I am not ashamed to admit that I am obsessed with a song from the movie Frozen. The song, Let It Go, is actually sung by Idina Menzel, who is a famous Broadway performer and I could listen to it over and over.
Have a fabulous weekend everyone!

Monday, February 3, 2014

Super Bowl Recap

Well, that Super Bowl was kind of boring. I'm sure if you are a Seahawks fan you would disagree, but football is only interesting if both teams are scoring. We had a quiet night with just a handful of us at the house. I did a little spread of chips and dip and sausage balls.

 I thought the halftime show was only okay, I kept wishing BeyoncĂ© and Destiny's Child would pop up on stage again. I liked a few of the commercials, but was not overly impressed. I pretty much agree to with Entertainment Weekly and their choices for Best and Worst of the night.

On a different note, the biggest surprise of the weekend was a fabulous gift from my mother-in-law, a Bissell DeepClean Pet Carpet Cleaner. We have rented a carpet cleaner from Lowes a couple times and have loved that we can get Camden's muddy paw prints off the den carpet and rugs. We haven't tried ours out yet but I'll let you know what we think after a test run this week. (Insert: you know you are an adult when you get excited about cleaning tools.)

site design by designer blogs