04 Mar

Effortless Entertaining: Brunch Style

This past weekend I hosted a little brunch at my house for some of the ladies in my life. It was part of a pampered chef party so we got to do a little eating and a little shopping at the same time. I hadn’t hosted a pampered chef party in almost 9 years and things have changed since then. Now instead of just a typical direct sales type party they do an interactive cooking demonstration so all of my guests to got to test out the products and make a meal and dessert.

effortless style brunch

I wanted to have some additional food for the guests so that they had something to snack on when they arrived. I originally was going to make everything from scratch, but then I realized I simply didn’t have the time with my little helpers around.

Here is what I did and it worked out wonderfully.

Little mini donuts dressed up on my white serving platters were sprinkled throughout the house.

effortless style brunch

I also took store bought crumb cake and removed it out of the packaging and cut it into pieces and placed it on another pretty platter. It’s all about how you display it.

crumb cake

I didn’t want to worry about having to keep eggs warm so for a main dish I did a yogurt parfait instead. I used a trifle bowl and layered Honey bunches of oats raspberry granola, strawberry yogurt, strawberries and blueberries. I used mason jars for serving and it was a big hit. People loved it and came back for seconds and the bowl was pretty much finished by the end of the party.

effortless style brunch

The biggest hit of the party though was the easiest thing to do. I picked up Danish Pancakes from Trader Joe’s. I simply had to put them on an ungreased cookie sheet for 10 mins at 450. After that I just finished them off with powdered sugar.

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I also picked up some of Trader Joe’s fudge sauce and caramel sauce as dipping sauces for the Danish pancakes. I warmed them up for 30 seconds in the microwave inĀ  their containers and then poured them into more of my white serving dishes.

effortless style brunch

All done!

effortless style brunch

People kept coming up to asking about the recipe. You know that’s always a good sign. I should have said they were a secret family recipe, but I let everyone in on my secret and many guests were stopping at Trader Joe’s on their way to pick up some of themselves.

It was an effortless brunch that everyone enjoyed. We ended up making lemon artichoke pasta with grilled chicken from Pampered Chef which was also a crowd favorite.

 

 

 

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03 Mar

Budget Boho Chic Finds

If you live in the NY/NJ area then you have hopefully heard of Century 21. No,not the real estate company, but a store full of amazing fashion finds and home goods. They are mainly know for their fashion items because they have a crazy good selection of high end designer pieces at great price points. Carrie from SATC even shopped there during a couple of episodes. What many people don’t know is that the home goods section is just as good. It’s a treasure trove of finds. It’s always one of my go to stops when I need styling items.

I was just there over the weekend and the Boho/Global trend is alive and well. Boho/Global has become somewhat of a timeless design style with most design lovers enjoying pieces that look well traveled and unique.

Take a peek at all of the goodies:

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Now a whole room filled with Boho/Global finds is a bit too much for my liking. I would feel like I was living in a catalog, but a couple of accents here or there and I can appreciateĀ  the design style.

If you don’t have a Century 21 near you don’t fret, because I made sure to read labels and the majority of these goodies came from Karma Living.

Posted in design inspiration, great buys | Leave a comment
02 Mar

Beauty Sleep 101

Did you know today is the start of National Sleep Week? In honor of that I’m working with Crane & Canopy to spread the word and share some of tips for how I get my beauty sleep. As a busy working momma, sleep is something I could always enjoy more of, but with my schedule I’m lucky with the 7 hours I get at night even though they tend to be a bit interrupted. Here are some tips on how I ensure I fall asleep easily and get my beauty rest. After all my concealer can only help so much.

crane&canopy linden duvet set

Princess and the Pea: Making sure you have amazing bedding is super crucial. A cozy and soft bedding set that feels great is a must. So many times I’ve bought bedding home only to have it feel like cardboard even after a washing or two. My personal favorite bedding company is Crane & Canopy. Not only is their bedding soft and luxurious, but the patterns are stunning and their prices can’t be beat. Win, win. I have the Linden duvet in Monaco blue.
crane and canopy linden duvet set

Pillow Talk: As a decorator I’m all about accent pillows on a bed, but make sure that when it comes time for sleep you remove all of those and only use sleeping pillows. Remember pillows are a personal choice. One person may love a super soft pillow while others enjoy firm. It’s best to pick out your own pillow and if possible test them out in the store. My husband has been known to line them up in a store and lay his head on all of his picks. I recently picked up a pillow for the specific way I sleep (side and stomach sleeper) and it has made a world of difference to me. Extra tip: Pillows should be changed every 6 months.

crane and canopy linden

My cup of tea: A cup of caffeine free tea always helps me get into a sleepy mood. Part of it is having something warm that makes me woozy, but another part of it is simply the ritual of it. Grabbing my favorite mug, steeping my tea, enjoying a cookie with it. All of it signals bedtime to my body and gets me in the mood. My favorite tea of the moment is Chopra Relaxing Tea from Harney & Sons the cinnamon is delightful for winter and I love the tins it comes in.

crane and canopy linden duvet set

On my bookshelf: This should really read on my nightstand, because that is where I stack all of the books on my current reading list. Whenever I’m having a hard time falling asleep picking up a book helps relax me and gets my eyes tired and I drift off rather quickly. My current nightstand read is #GirlBoss. What is on your nightstand? I’m almost done and will need a new read.

crane & canopy linden duvet set

Unplug: I know this is a hard one for everyone, but it really is crucial to getting a good nights sleep. My cell phone is practically attached to my hand, but at bedtime I leave it charging in my kitchen so it’s not tempting to pick it up and check facebook or my emails. Yes, I do use my laptop in bed to get some work done, but I shut things down around 45 mins before I’m ready for sleep.

crane&canopy duvet set

Do you have any tips for getting the ultimate night of beauty sleep?

Want to get some other tips? Make sure you check out:

Tuesday-Natalie from Designer Bags & Dirty Diapers
Wednesday-Jess from Bows and Sequins
Thursday- Emily from Life with Emily
Friday- Jennifer from Haute off the Rack

 

Posted in crane & canopy | 1 Comment
27 Feb

Friday Finds…

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-Are you an Oreo family? In our house we simply adore them. They were Hudson’s favorite cookie and have quickly become Asher’s favorite. I love them all and always pick up limited editions favors to test them out. My current favorite other than the classic is their lemon/golden Oreo. Love this article from Huff Post where they tested out a bunch of different combos. Yum! Going to have to try some new combinations this weekend.

-How beautiful is this make up bag? I don’t think I would dare to ever put make up in it and get it dirty. It’s like a mini work of art.

-In love with these mugs. Such an easy DIY project that I think I could even tackle with Hudson.

-Wishing and hoping to plan an island getaway at some point this year. I need some time in the sun! In love with this cover up. Oh those tassels.

-I love finding gems on Pottery Barn Teen. How adorable are these scalloped shams? They look like a must have to me!

Posted in friday finds | 2 Comments
26 Feb

Treat Yo Self: Satin Hands

This cold winter days are brutal on my hands. Between the chilly weather and the constant hand wash during cold and flu season my hands are super dry and even cracking a bit. Not so attractive! I’ve been trying out hand lotions left and right, but nothing seems to be doing the trick. That is until I remembered I had Satin Hands by Mary Kay.My mom had gifted it to me a while back and I had completely forgotten about it. I just started using it again this week and my hands are already feeling so much better! I urge you try it out yourself!

treat yo self

It’s super easy to use.

Step 1: Use the Satin Hands softner:

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Step 2: Apply the hand scrub:

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Step 3: Rinse everything off:

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Step 4: Apply hand cream:

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Then bliss and enjoy your baby soft hands!

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Dress is available here.

Posted in treat yo self, Uncategorized | 2 Comments
25 Feb

Wrapping Paper as Wall Paper

I was out shopping at HomeGoods yesterday and whenever I’m there I tend to go through all of the aisles, because you never know what you are going to need. I always pick up things from different sections, a plate here, a pillow there, etc.

On this trip I actually ended up coming home with rolls of wrapping paper. With no upcoming birthdays in sight I had no need for gift wrap paper, but the patterns were so pretty and the paper was really thick and only $3 for a 30″ wide by 12 foot long continuous section.

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I picked up a couple of rolls of the pink and gold striped paper and hope to use it soon in a project like this colorful nook from A Thoughtful Place. Didn’t Courtney do a great job?

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{Image via A Thoughtful Place}

Head over to your closest HomeGoods to pick up some rolls of your own. They had a lot of different gold and white patterned options, lots of polka dots and stripes too.

Posted in design advice, design inspiration | Leave a comment
24 Feb

Style Plan: Cozy Bedroom Nook

On these cold winter days I just want to cocoon myself inside my bedroom and come out in the Spring. Wouldn’t it be nice? Don’t think Hudson and Ash would appreciate it so my hibernation is only a dream, but here is a little cozy bedroom nook style plan that I put together.

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No.1 I only recently hopped on the bengal bazaar train and I’m so happy I did. Love this jade green colorway.

No. 2 Tassels and an elephant? Win! Plus it’s a steal at $40.

No. 3 My pillows option work perfectly on my classic bedding pick from Crane & Canopy. Love the pop of coral and it’s super soft and cozy.

No. 4 Love this rug! The moody charcoal with pops of green and orange are a wonderful take on the typical Persian rug.

No. 5 I love putting mirrors on nightstands behind lamps. The light from the lamp just bounces beautiful off the mirror and it makes the space feel so glam.

No. 6 Maybe it’s all the 50 Shades of Grey talk, but I’m really into charcoal gray at the moment. Love the color and high gloss on this lamp.

No. 7 Adore this dresser.The curvy lines and the pop of color! Ah swoon.

No. 8 I would need this artwork to remind me of summer days during my hibernation.

Off to brave the snow yet again!

 

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23 Feb

Scenes from my weekend…

Ah another weekend has come on gone!

This weekend we had another early morning soccer class. This time someone else decided to get in on the action.

soccer

I tested out some new sparkly jewelry for my soccer outing. Love the pink iridescent nature of the stones.

pinknecklace

The snow picked up again on Saturday so we spent most of the day at home hibernating. We ate grilled cheese:

grilledcheese

Painted:

abstractpaintings

Arranged flowers:

arrangingflowers

We also watched Monsters versus Aliens about a million times.

On Sunday we woke up and baked a cake to bring over my parents house since they were arriving home from their trip to Spain that afternoon.

cake

I painted my nails gold in honor of the Oscars. My new go to gold shade is Go For Gold. It only takes one coat and it dries in minutes. So easy!

goldnails

Continuing on my jewelry wearing kick I gave another necklace a spin. I have so many, but lately I always forget to put them on so I’m trying to make an effort to add them to outfits.

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We went out to do a little shopping before our dinner plans. I was lucky enough to snag this cool chair for an amazing deal!

rusticchair

Dinner was at my parents house so that we could welcome them home from their trip. I bought over the meal and made a super yummy baked ziti of sorts with elbow pasta, three cheese tomato sauce from Trader Joes, ricotta cheese, mozzarella cheese and parmesan cheese.Lots of yummy cheese. It was delicious!

bakedziti

Tried taking a group shot of my men having dessert and this is what happened when I snapped the photo. Jon got distracted because Asher started crying and tried to grab his plate because he wanted more cake and Hudson, who hates photos covered his face. Ah priceless.

cakeboys

The evening ended up at home where I got to dig into one of my Valentine’s day gifts, Absolutely Beautiful Things by Anna Spiro. It’s as good as it looks!

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I was happy to be tucked into bed by 9pm and watched the Oscars. I was a little late to the viewing, but it was blissful to be wrapped up with everything so early and already in bed.

Posted in weekend recap | 1 Comment
20 Feb

Friday Finds…

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{ Image via Burlap & Lace}

Here are this weeks finds that I can’t keep off my mind…

-How pretty is this entry way! I love all of it, but the abstract piece of art just speaks to me. Love that Shannon from Burlap and Lace made it herself!!! Bravo!

-I’m so over this cold weather. Spring where are you? I want to buy this dress and twirl around in the sunshine wearing it. I’m loving it.

-Obsessed with this rug. Seriously can’t get it off my mind and have been racking my brain trying to figure out where oh where I can use it. I need it in my life! It’s painted jute hence the crazy good price point. My parents have one in their house and it’s bright and perfect. I would highly recommend them for budget buys.

-Perused the shoe aisle at Target the other day and feel in love with these sandals.The cute tassels and the faux snake skin texture on them are calling my name. I want them in black and tan.

-Did you know that Groupon now has a coupon section where the coupons are actually active and work? Love this, because I do a lot of online shopping and always search for a coupon code. I’m going to spend this weekend gathering up some baby photos of Ash so I can make a little baby book from Shutterfly.Hudson has one that I did pretty quickly so I’m feeling like a bad momma that Ash is 9 months old and I don’t have one for him!

Happy Friday!

Posted in friday finds | 1 Comment
19 Feb

Treat Yo Self: Mini Orchids

I do not have a green thumb at all. With two kids, a dog, work, and just plain old life I never remember to water anything and whatever plant comes into the house promptly goes into the trash. I do love having having something green in my home and while I adore fresh flowers I don’t always get a chance to pick them up on a weekly basis. Enter orchids! A potted flower that I can actually keep alive, because it only needs a little bit of water once a week and some sun.

I pick them up at Trader Joe’s and while I normally get the standard size I picked up a mini one for $6 a couple of weeks ago and I love it!

It fits perfectly in my DIY Glassy Baby votive. It’s still a favorite project of mine. So easy and inexpensive and I use them all of the time!

miniorchid

Close up:

closeupofminiorchid

Make sure you head on out and treat yo self to one!

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