Fall Outfit Inspiration…

Is it really September already?!  This summer has flown past.  There have been lots of changes in my life this past summer (that I’ll be posting about soon), which have made it coming to its end bittersweet.  The theme of change in my life has been mirrored by the weather – leaves are changing, the sky is clearer, nights are cooler (meaning 90 degrees instead of 100), days are drier, fall is definitely coming.  Along with the weather, my closet is also going through a transition.  I love fall clothes but always wished I lived somewhere where fall clothes mean light sweaters, jeans, dresses and tights, boots and colorful scarves instead of shorts and t shirts (with a cardigan at night).    Here in Florida, by the time it’s cool enough to wear your fall clothes it already December!

So, here’s some of what I’m currently craving for my Fall wardrobe…

Cape Trench Coat

tan cape trench coat from A-Thread

Fall ensemble

red/orange pants and leopard loafers (Steve Madden) – my Fall uniform

Never thought I'd consider head to toe denim, but this look is all american. The secret is the light and dark denim paired together.

head-to-toe denim – definitely a good transition from summer to fall (photo from http://www.thedaybookblog.com/2011/02/boring.html)

how awesome is JCrew’s polkadotted cover look for August?

Hot Pink + Navy

navy + pink by JCrew

feminine pinks (photo from http://bisoumoments.tumblr.com/post/25506668475)

camel

camel coat and cherry red pants – one of my favorite combinations!!

Maxi skirt.

Fall maxi skirt done right (photo from http://apieceoftoastblog.com/a-piece-of-toast/2012/8/10/hey-girl-hey.html)

As far as hair and makeup go for Fall, my inspiration can be summed up in one fashion and beauty icon: Bridget Bardot

I can’t wait for cooler weather and fall fashion!  I hope everyone had a memorable summer :)

The Philadelphia Story Part III: What I Wore

It’s time for the final Philadelphia post!  If I’ve learned one thing, it’s that the weather in Philly is completely unpredictable and it just so happens that while we were there, it got up to 107 degrees (!!!).  Let me make one thing clear: I’m not talking about comfortably warm weather.  I’m talking scorching, sweating through your thinnest clothes, burning your feet through your shoes, makeup (literally) melting off your face, eating out at every meal just to be in air conditioning heat.  When it’s that hot and you’re walking 40+ blocks a day and drenched in sweat, it’s nearly impossible to look cute.  You just have to embrace the sweat and realize that everyone around you is sweating just as much as you are.  I actually ended up wearing everything that I packed (because I changed out of sweaty clothes at least twice a day), which rarely happens and I am so glad that I brought comfortable shoes that I threw in my suitcase at the last minute!

on the way to the hotel from the airport (unfortunately I didn’t get a picture of the whole outfit) – Banana Republic shirt, Gap shorts, Target “keds” and fedora

at the Liberty Bell – H&M dress, Target shoes and bag

At Reading Terminal and beside the LOVE statue – Target top, loafers and hat, Old Navy pants (my new favorites!)

in the city for a day of shopping, eating and picture taking: TJ Maxx dress (with alterations by yours truly), Target shoes and bag

At the Philly Art Museum with a fellow ballerina (she looks good for her age!) – Anthropologie shirt, American Eagle shorts, Target shoes

Visiting the West Philly community garden before dinner – H&M dress (my favorite!), Target shoes and bag

And here’s something that if it hadn’t been $300 would SO be in my closet right now!

Beatles dress.  Oh my god.  If that wasn’t proof enough that Anthropologie is the coolest store in the planet, check out the cat dress behind it.  AHHHH!!!

So there’s a recap of what I wore in Philly.  I miss Emmy and the big city so much – I can’t wait until she comes back home (and I get to shop from her closet again)!

The Philadelphia Story Part II: What We Ate

Here’s part two of our Philly trip: what we ate!  This might be my favorite part.  from Reading Terminal Market to Dock Street Brewery to dinner at my cousins Kristen and Nate’s appartment – this trip was full of amazing food!  And here’s some proof… Lunch – falafel from Hummus pasta salad and bread from a little place in Reading Terminal Market Falafel from Mama’s Vegetarian – I couldn’t say which falafel was better (Hummus or Mama’s Vegetarian)! Dinner – Spaghetti from Mix Greek salad and amazing vegan pizza from Dock Street Brewery Dinner from Vietnam Cafe – I can’t remember what my dish was called, but it was incredible!!

first we had these amazing spring rolls!

Bread with zucchini and homemade hummus at Kristen and Nate’s Lentil salad with tofu – amazing!! Dessert – blueberry ice cream at Kristen and Nate’s An incredible glazed donut and cinnamon buns from Reading Terminal Ice Cream from the Franklin Fountain

Unfortunately I didn’t get a picture of the szechuan noodles and black and white cookies from Dibruno Brothers – I was too busy eating them!  But here are some pictures of the amazing desserts there… Looking at all that amazing food is making me hungry.  I would buy another plane ticket just to eat in Philly again, but I think it’ll be easier to buy a cookbook!  Next up is part III: What I Wore.

The Philadelphia Story Part I: What We Did

Last week was amazingly fun.  Visiting with Emmy, watching Sherlock episodes, eating amazing food, wearing my new favorite polkadotted skinny pants, seeing the Liberty Bell, long walks in 107 degree weather (okay, so that part wasn’t exactly fun), seeing a Queen Latifah and Joe and Nick Jonas concert on the 4th of July, visiting the Philly Art Museum, going to thrift stores, people watching at a gorgeous park, having the best lemonade in the world, seeing awesome fireworks, going to a Philly Pops concert, shopping at markets, having picnics, trying on ridiculously expensive clothes just for fun, giving coffee another shot (I’m so close to liking it this time!) and having an overall incredible time – I wanna go back already!!  Because I took close to 1500 pictures (not kidding at all), I’m going to split them up into three different posts: What We Did, What We Ate and What I Wore.  In that order.  So here are some pictures from our sightseeing and exploring in the city of brotherly love!

First up: Philadelphia Pops concert and picnic at Independence Hall + visiting the Liberty Bell…

July 4th celebrations (Parade, vegan ice cream at the Franklin Fountain, concert at the Philly Art Museum and fireworks)…

the best soy mint chocolate chip I’ve ever had in my life!

Queen Latifah, Nick & Joe Jonas concert and fireworks at the Philly Art Museum…

After all of the 4th celebrations we explored the city!

the farmer’s market at Rittenhouse Square

Reading Terminal Market

Elfreth’s Alley and Paper Source

The Philadelphia Art Museum…

Running up the Rocky steps!!

my favorite

another favorite!

Great Coats collection – Schiaparelli and Dior, among others!

So there’s what we did on our trip!!  I’ll be back soon for What We Ate and What I Wore!

Hot Child in the City

Never in my life will I take for granted a good central air system, because it is absolutely scalding here! Every time I mentioned being from Florida the standard response  is “oh so you’re used to this!” but no…no I am not. There is no heat like the heat rising off searing hot pavement, which was litereally so intense the other day it was starting to burn my feet through my shoes. We’re downright spoiled in Florida – sure it gets hot but we’re never more than 20 feet from the nearest pool, icy cold AC-ed room, or car, also with a fully functioning AC. We dash from the cooled off house, to the cooled off car, so that we can drive to the beach. Poor us. Here there is no escaping it – the city, the packed subway, its just hot everywhere.

Most of my time has been spent in what I like to imagine (it makes it slightly more romantic,) a very Gatsy-esque manner- wearing the lightest clothes I can find, sipping iced pelligrino, fanning myself off as I listlessly try to read a book sitting right up next to the AC unit. I think it’d be a little easier to take if I were sprawled out on a couch, sipping a mint julep in one of those great white mansions on the shore of East Egg,  but it’s as close as I can get.

Recent haul from the Rittenhouse square weekend farmer’s market. Beets are my newest food obsession.

When it’s this hot I see no reason not to eat baked french toast (recipe here) for breakfast and lunch, which is exactly what I did today.

Lunch by the famous Philly LOVE statue. Next time I will be jumping in.

City gardens are one my favorite things to stumble upon on a walk.

Stay cool everyone!

Recent Happenings…

I love this time of year.  Flowers are blooming, bees are buzzing, pools are in everyday use, blueberry cobbler and vegan pizza are being made (more on that later), tank tops, shorts and maxi dresses are filling up your closet.  And, designers are releasing their resort collections!  So without further adieu, here is my favorite 2013 resort collection (from http://www.style.com/fashionshows/review/2013RST-VALENTIN)!

Valentino ~

big 70s flower prints, longer hemlines, classic whites, leather and lace, pops of color – what more could a girl ask for?

I seriously love every piece in this collection – and for me, that’s a rare thing!

Now here’s the part about the cobbler and pizza – yum!

 

made with fresh blueberries from our garden…

I went to an engagement party for my good friend on Friday night (unfortunately I didn’t a picture of my outfit, which was a white H&M dress with white sandals and turquoise accessories) and then a graduation party on Saturday where I wore this orange dress and leopard print flats.

I just realized how my room looks like a tornado ripped through it – haha!

Maybe I should go take care of that, or I could go have a second piece of blueberry cobbler…..I vote for the latter.

The City of Brotherly Love…

Last Monday, Emmy, our mom and I flew to Philadelphia, PA to help her get moved in to her new apartment.  It was a bittersweet trip.  She will be there all summer, so it was nice to have the week to see Philly and spend some time with her.

Our flight there was through Atlanta, so we used our 1 hour layover to get bagels, coffee and tea from Starbucks.  Have you ever noticed how much fun it is to people watch when you’re running on about three hours of sleep?  You should try it some time.

We got there around lunch time, so we got settled in at my cousin’s apartment and then went to The Gold Standard.  I had the black bean burger and it was ridiculously good -

After we ate, we walked back to the apartment to rest up.  Then we took the trolley into town and got groceries at Trader Joe’s (which is amazing!) and made dinner

After dinner, we sat out on the front porch of the apartment and picked fresh strawberries from the garden.

On Tuesday, my mom wasn’t feeling well so we stuck close to home and spent lots of time outside and exploring around our block.

I came across this Martha Stewart entertainment book at the apartment and found something interesting inside…

On Wednesday, my mom was still feeling pretty crummy so Emmy and I went into center city and explored around.  We had a picnic at a park in Rittenhouse Square and then walked around for a while.

We went looking for the movie crew for Dead Man Down that our cab driver on Tuesday pointed out.  We found it and also found Dominic Cooper running down the street being shot at – it was very exciting!

There he is in the tan jacket – I had no idea I was standing this close to him until I walked across the street and realized that was him!

Since the movie is set in NY, everywhere you looked there were New York taxis, street signs, business signs and licence plates on parked cars.  We didn’t get to see Colin Ferrall, who is the star of the film, but they’ll be there all month so Emmy might get to see him!

Emmy and I walked a couple blocks and went to H&M, JCrew and Anthropologie!

Then we came home and ate a really good tofu stir-fry and sat on the porch watching the rain.

On Thursday, my mom was feeling so awful and was having symptoms of a heart attack.  We had to call 911 and rush her to the ER.  This was very scary, not only because of her symptoms, but also because Emmy and I really had to take charge and do things we’ve never done before.  After an exhausting 6 hours, they ruled out any serious conditions and thought that she was probably just coming down with something on top of dehydration and exhaustion from traveling.  While she was having many different test done, Emmy and I ran errands and drank lots of Starbucks.  About an hour after we got back to the apartment, our cousins, Kristen and Nate (whose apartment we’d been staying at) got back home.  We ate salad from the garden with homemade honey mustard dressing (dijon mustard from France, honey from our front yard) and tofu hoggies from a small Chinese grocery store a couple blocks away and then went to get gelato and sorbetto from a place pretty close by.

grape and pineapple mint sorbetto

After we went out, we moved Emmy into her adorable apartment – we all love it!!

On Friday morning, we walked around the block one more time, packed up are suitcase and the hardest part, said goodbye to Emmy.  There were minimal tears (a miracle in itself) and lots of hugs.  We’re going back to see her in July, so it really won’t be that long, but it’ll feel much longer.

The plane ride home was quick and easy and it was good to be home.  This was a very exciting trip (with the exception of the ER visit) and I’m counting down the days until our next trip.

Taking Flight….

I want to share a life changing experience that I had last weekend.  I flew a plane.  I still can’t believe it!  It wasn’t planned, which makes it even more special.  

On Saturday I went to take a free flight through the Young Eagles organization, which offers a free flight to people under 17.  I went up in a small, four-seater plane which belonged to, and was being flown by a family friend.  I was amazed by how high-tech it was.  It even had a parachute that could carry the plane back to the ground if there was an engine failure – pretty cool, huh?  It definitely made me feel pretty safe!

When we’d been up in the air for about 5 minutes or so, when the pilot, AJ, turned to me and told me to put my hand on the yoke (the equivalent of the steering wheel on a car).  After a couple seconds he said “it’s your plane, now!” and I realized that he wasn’t flying – I was!  It was an amazing moment.  It’s hard to pin down the exact emotions that I was feeling at that moment but they included fear, exhilaration, happiness, confidence and freedom.  I wasn’t flying for more than two minutes, but in a way, it felt much longer.  I really felt like I was floating, above the clouds, above everything that is familiar to me.  It was my first time flying a plane, but I felt like I’ve been preparing for this my whole life.  When AJ told me to give me his plane back (Haha!) I took a deep breath and accepted the fact that my life had forever changed.  I’ve entered a new world now.  I’m the same person, only happier and with the most confidence I’ve ever had.  I’ve done something I never thought I could do and now I feel like I can do anything!

I feel as though something inside me has started to heal.  Something deep that always told me I wasn’t good enough.  That I didn’t have enough strength, guts or will to do what I wanted to do.  That has changed.  I have realized just how big this world is and how much there still is for me to explore.  The problems that I have, though they are important, aren’t what defines me.  I realize that now.  When I look at myself in the mirror, I no longer see those problems – I see room for improvement.  It’s amazing that something like flying a plane can make that much of a change in your life.  Now there’s my pre-flight life and post-flight life and I love how the post-flight life is looking!

A couple days ago I told my grandfather, Pop, about how I had flown.  He was a pilot during WWII and I knew he would be excited to know about my experience.  He was so happy!  He started talking about his experiences.  He told me how after his first solo flight he felt like now that he had flown a plane, he could do anything (sound familiar?).  I told him that I felt the same way and he told me not to let it go to my head – haha!  He encouraged me to work hard and get my pilot’s licence, which I’ve always planned on.  I would be a fourth generation pilot!

my pilot mommy :)

Flying is something I will never forget.  This was the first time I’ve flown a plane, but it certainly won’t be the last!!

Chambray and Cakes

It seems crazy and not quite real to me, but in a week from tomorrow I’ll be flying out of Tallahassee – er, make that moving of Tallahassee, for the first time in my life. Having opted to stay here for college, so as to not graduate with a gajillion dollars worth of student debts, I’m officially an adult who has never been out of their hometown for more than a month. Seems weird when I say it like that, but that’s the gist of it.

Obviously, Eliza and I will be a bit more than an inch apart, which, as our blog name, is not only a comment on our (very insubstantial) height difference, and tight-knit relationship, but also a pretty literal comment on how spatially close we’ve been for most of our lives. Seems pretty bizarre that I won’t be able to just holler down the hall when I want to tell her something, or sneak into her Martha-esque craft station whenever I need some aquamarine glitter or baker’s twine (both of which, yes, she actually keeps a supply of.) Suffice it to say, I’m feeling equal parts stoked at the idea of three months in Philly, and a little bit odd at the idea of it…

Onto happier things though, because it’s going to be a fabulous adventure, and Skype is a very real thing, and a week full of pilates, pool side parties, and cookouts still lies ahead of me.

Happiness, exhibit A:

My search for the perfect chambray dress has been successful! I couldn’t find a good picture of the exact dress I bought, but it’s from Gap and it’s gorgeous and I fully plan on having it very heavy rotation this summer. Something about traveling and shirt dresses go hand in hand, no?

My shirtdress inspiration for this summer. Being a supermodel is probably a nice added bonus, but I’ll take what I can get.

…and exhibit B: This cake.

Carrot cake is a birthday cake staple around here, but for my mom’s birthday this year it was decided we would branch out to a Hummingbird cake, which is my favorite cupcake flavor but not something I had ever baked myself. It was a very wise decision, and with everyone sneaking seconds (and I suspect thirds,) this cake only lasted about 2 days I think.

Classic Southern Hummingbird Cake with Vegan Buttercream Frosting

From Southern Living

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3 large eggs, beaten $
1 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 (8-ounce) can crushed pineapple, undrained
1 cup chopped pecans
2 cups chopped banana

Combine first 5 ingredients in a large bowl; add eggs and oil, stirring until dry ingredients are moistened. (Do not beat.) Stir in vanilla, pineapple, 1 cup pecans, and bananas.
Pour batter into three greased and floured 9-inch round cakepans. Bake at 350° for 25 to 30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire racks 10 minutes; remove from pans, and cool completely on wire racks.

Vegan Buttercream Frosting

Super easy – super adaptable, and no one missed the called-for cream cheese icing a bit (even me, the vegan-skeptic of the household!)

1 package powdered sugar (16 ounces)
6 tablespoons Earthbalance (room temperature)
3 tablespoons plain soymilk, more or less
1 teaspoon vanilla

Using a beater, mix the sugar, butter, and vanilla. Add the milk a little at a time until it’s the right consistency for spreading. You can add a little more (or less) if you need to. I ended up having to double, and I think eventually triple this recipe since the cake turned out to be three, ginormous layers. It’s easy to whip up a second and third batch though in a minute or two, midway through the icing process.

May Flowers….

This past week has been chalk full of rainstorms, beautiful flowers, hummingbird cake, new earrings, a new bathingsuit and lots of beautiful sunsets.

Monday was my mom’s birthday so we celebrated by going to Carrabba’s for dinner and returning to home for cake and presents.  Too bad we’ll have to wait until my November birthday to have another cake (an excuse will have to be made up pretty soon!)

yummy!

getting ready to go out – World Market has the best earrings!

I got a new bathingsuit at Target last week – it’s so nautical and chic and I can’t wait to wear it to the beach this summer!

I’ve been craving fruit all week and was so happy to find that the blueberries in the garden are ready!

and this cantalope was scrumptious -

Springtime makes everything look yummier :)

it makes everything look prettier too!

Storm clouds rolling in for the afternoon shower…

The sunset last night was incredible!

Alright.  That settles it.  Things are just prettier in the springtime.

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