Friday, April 29, 2011

Mother's Day Ideas.

Each year, a few weeks before Mother's Day, I always start thinking about what to get my mom. She is a very gracious gift receiver, (Case in point: She opened up a men's watch one Christmas, because we had mis-tagged it, and GUSHED at how much she loved it before we told her it was dad's.) so anything given with thought and love would be ok with her. However, I like going that extra mile to search out that perfect gift for her. Something she wouldn't buy for herself, or something she hasn't gotten that has to do with one of her hobbies. Something that says thank you for being you....thank you for loving me unconditionally... 

I've put together a list of unique, thoughtful, and fun ideas. Hopefully something on this page inspires you and that each of your lovely mothers has a special day!

How about these beautiful Jerome Rouesseau yellow ostrich sandals?

Or this adorable cheese dome? (Love!)

What about going with a unique terra cotta pot in a stunning turquoise color?
Even better? Plant a flower in there for her! (or get someone else, to! Ha!)

Does your mom love to send hand-written notes? If so, this adorable return address stamp is perfect!

Head over to Luxury Monograms and choose between dozens of patterns and fonts for placemats, pillows, napkins, and more! The most beautiful monogramming website I've ever seen!

Here are a few of Luxury Monogram's amazing pillows!

A statement ring for the jewelry loving moms? Looks a lot like the YSL Arty rings, no?

My mom and I both collection Annie Glass
This might be a great thing to start collecting for your mom!

There are several styles, and they come in gold and silver.
They are gorgeous on their own and paired with other plates!

I hope this list helped you and gave you some good ideas! Enjoy the day with your mom! xx

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

NYC Trip. Part Two.

Here is my favorite of the NYC posts, because I want to share with you lovely readers one of my new found favorite NYC places... Beauty & Essex. (Read about it more here and here.) Urban Daddy (one of my fave sites) is how I found out about it in the first place, but my friend over at The Honeybee blog sold me on it with her fabulous post about it!

You enter this restaurant/bar through a pawn shop! All you do is walk to the back of the pawn shop, to be let in by the "bouncer." Then descend into a glamorous 3 story restaurant!

This was the entrance to the restaurant/bar, which I thought was stunning.

There is free champagne served in the ladies bathroom/lounge, which itself is a must-see!
Go to Beauty and Essex, if only to see this! 

Chris and I just went for dessert and drinks. This was our favorite dessert, the Black Bottomed Butterscotch Pot De Crème with coconut chantillY. (Those were edible gingerbread spoons!)

Our other dessert was the Devil’s Food Layer Cake vanilla mascarpone filling, with milk ice cream.

Even the menus were glam! By the way, try their cocktails, too. They are amazing!

Another night we had drinks at the Plaza Hotel, which is always a fun & classy thing to do!
(Brunch there is amazing, too!) I couldn't resist taking a picture of the beautiful table of flowers in the lobby. The Plaza always has the most gorgeous flower displays!

My drink at The Plaza was wonderful! Very light & refreshing. 
Can't remember what it was called, but it had gin, ginger beer, and lemon or lime juice. It was topped with fresh mint & candied ginger, too. SO good!

The last place I want to share with you is Antique Garage, in Soho.
I was shopping in Soho one afternoon and happened upon this adorable little place. 
I judged a book by it's cover, as they say, and make the decision this place looked too cute not to go in!
Turns out I was right. This tiny Greek & Middle Eastern restaurant has a polite and informative staff, great food, and unbeatable prices! Go here if you are ever in Soho and find yourself a little hungry from all that shopping :)

Inside the restaurant. Exposed brick walls and ornate crystal chandeliers give this place a neat vibe.

I was eating dinner in a couple of hours, so I kept it light by ordering from their large appetizer and salad menu. I ordered the Tzatziki, which was a yogurt spread with cucumbers and fresh dill. It was served with their warm, homemade bread... PERFECT! I ordered a nice glass of white wine, at the suggestion of my server. It ended up being the perfect mid-afternoon snack, adding to the perfection was the fact that all the windows were open due to the unseasonably warm day!

Hope you enjoyed my other NYC post! Please let me know YOUR favorite NYC places! xx

Thursday, April 21, 2011


Just got these babies last week in NYC! So. Stoked.
These will be summer staples, as evidenced by the mountain of people that worn these short boots this past week at Coachella - as seen here, here, and here.
Random thought of the day: I am thinking about stealing on of my little honey's shirts and doing this...


Tuesday, April 19, 2011

NYC Trip. Part One.

My husband's job is crazy and can change at a moment's notice. So now that I am a wifey, I have to be ready to go/move/travel at a moment's notice! I love it, but sometimes gets a little nuts, seeing myself coming and going! Last week, I found out he was going to New York. So what did I do when I learned my little honey was going to be in my favorite city? I booked a flight to meet him, of course! We were only there for 4 days, but I packed a lot into those 96 hours! I decided to hit up a couple of my NYC staples but also try a couple of new places that I've been dying to try!

The day we got there was a day off for him, so we went to one of my top 3 favorite NYC restaurants: Orso. My aunt has been coming to this place for YEARS, every time she comes to NYC to go to market for Kittie Kyle. It never disappoints.

The wine list is great and peppered with many affordable -yet amazing - bottle options. 
The one we had, above, was great!

Some stand outs on the Orso menu:
Arugula, Trevisano, and Endive Salad with red wine vinaigrette 

Escargot in White wine, bacon, tomato, and truffle oil Brodetto

Sauteed Calf's Liver with Crispy Onions & pine nuts
Don't knock it until you try it. It's surprisingly amazing!

Other stand outs are: Blood orange, shaved fennel, and red lettuce salad with shaved ricotta salata; any of their pizzas; Oven Roasted Quail stuffed with sweet italian sausage, broccoli rabe, pine nuts, and raisins with marsala wine sauce; and the pork chop. This place is small, intimate, and dimly lit - right on Restaurant Row - at 322 W. 46th St. between 8th and 9th. A must-eat for every time I'm in NYC!

This was right across the street from our hotel, and I had been wanting to try it!

The burgers were great & really fresh! 
Chris and I liked them almost as much as our beloved In-n-Out burgers! Ha! 

We were in the mood for something sweet and ordered the "Pretzel! The Concrete" milkshake.
It was chocolate custard, peanut butter sauce, chocolate covered pretzels, and marshmallow sauce.

Chelsea Market = Great place to go, eat, walk around, and eat some more.
This a foodie's paradise!

Saved the BEST for last...
My favorite NYC lunch place: La Bonne Soupe!
Again, I found this place thanks to my aunt. She's been coming here for years, too!
An adorable little French restaurant with the best soups I've ever had!

I always order from the "Les Bonnes Soupes" section of the menu.
One of my favorite soups is their Soupe Paysanne a l'Orge, which is a mushroom and barley soup with lamb. It's one of the tastiest soups I've ever had, which says a lot, because I'm a huge soup fan! This place is small, yet ALWAYS crowded. I highly recommend going here for a great, comforting lunch or light dinner. Amazing soup, warm bread, and a glass of wine? You can't beat it! By the way, you can get way more than soup here. I just stick to the soup because it's that good!
La Bonne Soupe is located at 48 West 55th Street, between 5th & 6th Ave.

Hope you guys enjoyed my little NYC re-cap, part one. Part two coming soon! If you have any NYC places you love to go, please let me know! I love learning about new places!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Fig & Blue Cheese Appetizer Tarts

Everyone needs to have an arsenal of recipes that can be called upon at a moment's notice, or when you really need to impress your mother-in-law your friends. I've got several main course and dessert recipes that are staples, but until recently I hadn't found a stand-out appetizer recipe. About a month ago, I went to visit my aunt and uncle in Memphis. They are both AMAZING cooks, especially my uncle, who likes to cook with exotic ingredients & is always on the hunt for a new, off-the-beaten-path recipe. While doing one of the wine tastings I mentioned here, they served these Fig & Blue Cheese Tarts. With one bite, I knew this would be added to my recipe collection! Recipe is below. Try them for yourself, or make them for your next get together and bask in the glow of every one's praise!

Fig & Blue Cheese Appetizer Tarts

4 oz. cream cheese           
1 cup crumbled blue cheese             
1/3 cup sweet orange marmalade
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
 6 oz. dried mission figs, coarsely chopped
2 cans crescent roll sheets
1/2 cup pecans or walnuts, coarsely chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mash cream cheese & blue cheese with a fork. In a small saucepan, mix marmalade & balsamic vinegar on low heat, whisking to blend. Stir in figs, and simmer over low until figs are soft and most of liquid is absorbed - around 10 mins. Without unrolling dough, cut into 16 slices and place 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Press in center of dough, making a deep indention/pocket. Put around 1 teaspoon of the cheese & fig mixture into the indention, making sure it's far enough into the dough that it won't overflow once baked. Sprinkle with the nuts. Bake until golden brown, around 11-15 mins. Serve warm. Enjoy!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Earring Obsession.

 My favorite accessory of all time has to be bracelets. Cuffs, bangles, big, small, (but mostly big, ha), metal, wood, plastic, Lucite, rhinestone, gold, silver.... you get the picture. I love it all! To me, that is the perfect accessory. No doubt, my mom's love of a statement bracelet - or in her case, an armful of them - helped me arrive at my decision. I've mentioned it before on here, but almost everyday since I can remember, she wears 3 gorgeous sterling cuffs from the Indian Market in Santa Fe. She purchased those classics on a trip she took with my dad almost 20 years ago, and they have rarely left her left arm since! (Picture below)

My deep love for an armful of bracelets still stands, but lately I've been drawn to statement earrings just as much! My hair is naturally curly, and I live in the South. Sooooo that means...

Curly hair + humid weather = bad hair days

Because of that nice little equation, I wear my hair up a lot. I just can't stand for my hair to be down when it's hot and windy or when I'm on the water during the summer months. When my hair is up, I like to have a big pair of earrings to offset the up do. (And by up do, I mean a high ponytail or "knot.") Lately, I've been packing up some things in my apartment, so I can go live with my husband for the season, and in doing so I've found I have quite a collection of statement earrings. Since the summer is coming up & humid weather is headed our way, I would encourage you to let your hair down put your hair up, have some fun, and try the statement earring trend! Here is some of my recent collection!

These sliced agate earrings, dipped in silver around the edges, are so unique!
They are Ethereal earrings by Sarah Richey, which I purchased at H. Audrey in Nashville.
Lucky you, starting May 1st, you can order from her website.
I had the chance to meet her, and she's LOVELY! Definitely check out her site!

Vintage Kenneth Jay Lane. Can't wait to wear these this summer with a tan,
flowy maxi dress, and some jeweled flats!

Vintage earrings from East India. These are very old, which adds a ton of character!

Some of my new faves, from the new Anthropologie Accessories Store in Nashville!
As I mentioned on Twitter, if you are near Nashville, you MUST visit the store!

Love the turquoise & gold color combination!

My friend Rachel introduced me to Diana Warner jewlery, and now I'm hooked!
These were my first pair of her earrings, and they are stunning on the ear!

Earrings from Kittie Kyle, the store my aunts & mom started in the 70s.
If you are ever in Memphis, TN, this store should be on your list!
The buyers are so good at finding affordable, yet incredibly unique jewelry designers!

I didn't have a single pair of earrings with hot pink, so I added them to my collection asap!
These will look great with anything black!

I don't wear silver that often, 
but these captured my attention while shopping in L.A. this past December.
Got them at the cutest store on Robertson called undrest.
Love their small collections of swim suits, lingerie, sleepwear, and jewelry!

I got into collecting vintage jewelry because of my love for rhinestone bracelets/earrings.
Here is my most recent find! They make a huge statement, trust me!
They "crawl" up the side of the ear, giving a dramatic effect for evening.

I recently won these earrings on my first blog giveaway at A Sequin Dress At Breakfast!
The earrings are designed by "Inspired by Elizabeth."
Check out her Etsy store for more beautiful jewelry! She also does custom pieces!

Here are my mom's cuffs from the Indian Market in Santa Fe!

That's all for now!  Hope you guys enjoyed this post! My next post will be some statement earring picks from me, so come back and check those out! 

Heads up: Just found out I'm going to Baltimore tonight, then onto NYC for next week!!! (Yay!) Because of that, I may not post as much in the next week. Will return soon, though, with details from my trips! Have a great weekend! xx

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Yes Please.

I will be wearing a version of this look a lot this spring and summer. Mark my words. I am short (5'2"), and when I wear a great-fitting pair of wider leg jeans with high legs look a mile long! Would YOU wear this trend?