Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Vegan Peanut Butter Cookies

You Will Need:

{1 ½} cups flour
{1} cup peanut butter
{1/4} cup oil
{3/4} cups sugar
{1} tsp. vanilla

Mix all ingredients in a bowl, roll the dough into 2-inch balls, place on an ungreased cookie sheet, and bake at 400°F for 10 to 12 minutes. 

Could it get any easier?

Monday, July 25, 2011

Clothing Swap Brunch

Although my closet is bursting at the seams with clothes, I tear through it every morning {for what feels like hours} complaining that I have nothing to wear. So when my dear friend sent me an invitation for a clothing swap party, I did not hesitate to R.S.V.P for a second!

The party was a huge success for revitalizing everyone’s wardrobe! I brought home 2 full bags of clothing from JCrew, Banana Republic, Anthro, F21, Loft, and more!

Here are just a few of my new threads:

       If you are interested in gathering your closet and friends together for an afternoon of clothes-trading, here are a few suggestions for the perfect swap party: 

            1. Party Hostess: Our sweet hostess sent out actual invitations a few weeks before the party to give us ample time to comb through our closets. She also provided delicious mimosas, brunch, and shopping bags.

      2. Set Some Rules: All Items should be cleaned and in good condition, without holes, rips, or stains. Remind guests to bring shoes, bags, jewelry, and other accessories too!

1.     3. Donate the leftovers. When the swap was over, we took the leftovers to our local Junior League Warehouse. 

Have fun!!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Have I Lost my Head Over Heels?

I have a confession. As of right now, I have bought and returned over 6 pairs of wedding shoes. I just cannot seem to make up my mind!

It all started last October when we got engaged. The first thing on my list was the WEDDING DRESS. Like every other girl, I knew exactly what I wanted and was super excited to find it. I spent weeks dress shopping, and no luck. Finally, I decided to have it handmade {from scratch}! Expecting a 4-6 month timeline from my dressmaker, I was completely surprised when she called me just 4 WEEKS from our initial meeting to tell me it was time for my first fitting. She also instructed me to bring my wedding shoes with me so she could get the most accurate measurements.

WAIT! Bring my shoes?!? I had not even thought about bridal shoes, and I definitely had NO clue what I wanted! So, I quickly did some online research and fell head over heels in love with…

I brought these to my first fitting and all the girls ooohhh’d and aahhh’d as I strutted around the dressing room. 

But months later, I had second thoughts and purchased…

My excitement for these shoes was short lived, and within a month I had already moved on to…
Shoe #3 {Christian Louboutin}


I actually did try these on, and for a brief moment thought to myself “when will I ever have an excuse to splurge on these ever again?” I grinned. I posed. I elbowed women in lesser, more sensible shoes out of the way to reach the mirror. And then I cried a little as I put them back.

Okay, moving on to...

Peep toe pumps with a satin bow – heck yes! But then I started considering pink…

Shoe #4 {Nine West Pumps in Pink}

Then I decided that I do want my shoes to be my “something blue”…and purchased...

I just didn’t like these as much after a few days…

So after ALL that, I embarrassingly admit, I REPURCHASED Shoe #1 {Nina Electra in Navy LusterSatin}. 

Am I crazy?

Monday, July 18, 2011

Breakfast Sandwiches

Nothing starts off my day better than a warm, melty, toasty, EGG SANDWHICH. The construction of the sandwich itself is enough reason to name it an undisputed breakfast champion. The layering of flavor that occurs when the egg meets the cheese, stacked upon a perfectly buttered, toasted muffin is truly a morning delicacy.

During the week, I am always running late in the morning, so my unbelievably incredible fiancĂ© makes my sandwich for me {reason 7,342,573 I am marrying him} and wraps it up in tin foil so I can grab it as I run out the door.  

However, I recently learned that these sandwiches are freezable, and reheat quite nice in less than 25 minutes!

Boasting a mere 150 calories per sandwich {and 3 weight watchers points}, and costing less than 61 cents each, the egg sandwich is a solid option to put into your breakfast rotation.

You Will Need:
{2} Packages of English Muffins {*Note: I stock up on these when they are on sale, buy one, get one free.} Cost = $2.10
{1} Carton of Eggs. Cost = $1.79
{1} Package of Shredded Cheddar Cheese {*Note: I also stock up on cheese when it’s on sale.} Cost = $2.00
Butter {optional}

Total Cost: $5.89/12 = .49/each

Lightly grease a muffin tin and crack an egg into each cup.
 Bake for 15-20 minutes at 350 degrees
Slice each muffin in half and lay them out on a baking sheet.  Bake for about 10 minutes in the oven at 350 degrees.
Add a dab of butter to both sides of the muffin {I use butter spray} and assemble your sandwich!
 Continue assembling the rest of your sandwiches...
 Eat right away!
OR...Freeze for Later!

If you want to store these for later, stick all your sandwiches on a baking sheet and put them all in the freezer, uncovered and unwrapped.  Leave them in there for about an hour.  This will give them a chance to give off some moisture and also freeze a bit.  If you were to wrap them up right away then there would be all kinds of liquid that would condense.

But don’t forget about them or they’ll get freezer burned.  Pull them all out after an hour or two and wrap them individually in plastic wrap or foil and then store them in a freezer safe plastic bag.  They will keep for a few weeks without a problem.

To Reheat {from completely frozen to warm and melted} bake for 25 minutes at 350 degrees.


Friday, July 15, 2011

Adventures in Calligraphy

For years I have been obsessed with the art of calligraphy. There is just something so graceful about black calligraphic lines against ivory paper that really draws me to the elegant craft. 

However, it wasn’t until this week that I was actually inspired to try it! It allll started with a blog post by my new friend, April, of A. Liz Adventures. She featured her gorgeous wedding invitations a few days ago and her calligraphy immediately caught my attention. It was truly exquisite. Naturally, I inquired as to who she used for her calligraphy, and she informed me that she did it herself {this girl has some serious talent}!! When I told her I was interested in learning the beautiful writing, she immediately offered to show me the ropes! I was beyond ecstatic {to say the least}. We met up last night at a coffee shop for a quick beginner’s course, and then walked down to Michaels to get my calligraphy supplies!

Our Michaels trip - so fun!
Perfecting my penmanship will definitely take time to achieve. There will be many hours of frustration ahead, and lots of discarded pages along the way. However, I am hopeful that I can master as least the basics quick enough to address all my wedding invitations in less than two months {fingers crossed}!
Oh - and a HUGE thank you to April, my new fabulous friend, for all her help in my new adventure!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Happy Campers?

This past weekend, Matt and I went camping with our dear friends, B + P & W + A, at Graveyard Fields off the Blue Ridge Parkway! We had a GREAT time {at the beginning anyway}!

When we first arrived, we immediately set up camp...

Home Sweet Home!
Then we hiked the 4 mile Graveyard Fields Loop.
Later the guys chopped firewood...
And we all drank out of really cool cups!
But THEN…out of NOWHERE…
 a STORM started rolling in!
So we quickly changed into our rain gear
and made dinner in a haste! And by "dinner," I mean that we only had time to throw two hot dogs and three small pizzas on the grill, which later tasted like rain.
Pita Pizzas & Hotdogs! Yum!

  But within an hour of the first drop we became prisoners of Mother Nature in our tents...  
Within two hours, we were floating in nearly 4 inches of water... 
Matt braved the storm, patching our rain fly...while Charlie and I took a little nap.
 After four and a half hours, we called it quits and became prisoners of our car. And it doesn’t end there…the storm left behind a dense fog that prevented us from leaving Graveyard Fields until 6 a.m.  Have you ever tried to sleep in a car seat while your clothes are still wet?  {We did, not awesome}.  Although terrible at the time, we joked about it during our drive home.

Lesson learned. 
A 30% chance of showers and thunderstorms? Not worth the risk. 
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