Sunday, November 29, 2009

Guess where we are going this week...

The happiest place on earth! We are going to Disney World for a week. My husband has a conference in Disney World, so we are turning it into a family vacation. I am going a little nuts right now with getting the house decorated for Christmas and getting ready for our trip!! It will all work out, and I am sure we will have a great time! What is your favorite thing to do in Disney World?

Votivo Winter Solstice

I always have candles burning in my house. Votivo is one of my favorite brands. I purchased a Votivo Winter Solstice triple-wick candle at Tuesday Morning for only $12.99. It probably retails for $50.00. I lit it today for the first time, and it smells amazing. I drove back to Tuesday Morning and bought two more plus a reed diffuser. If you live near a Tuesday Morning I encourage you to swing by and see if they have this candle. It is the perfect winter scent.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Amelia Island Plantation

I have been MIA again. This time I was at the Amelia Island Plantation for a board meeting and a conference. The weather was on the chilly side, and it rained a bit. I was inside at meetings, so it did not bother me. It is good that my family did not join me because they would have been bored. I returned on Saturday, and my husband is leaving for Palm Beach on Wednesday and returns the following Wednesday. Thursday is Thankgiving and Friday is a Philadelpia Flyers hockey game and shopping at King of Prussia. Then, we are leaving for Disney! I think we should just move to Florida! I have 446 posts to read, but I promise to read each one! Hope everyone has been keeping well...

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Gregg Ruth Jewelry

Gregg Ruth is my favorite jewelry designer. The top picture is a canary diamond ring in platinum which is my engagement ring. Gregg Ruth's collection is fine jewelry-precious stones in platinum and gold. So much of the trendy jewelry is sterling silver and semi-precious stones or a few diamond chips. I do love my David Yurman and John Hardy, but it is totally different to wear fine jewelry. I love getting a beautiful piece of Gregg Ruth jewelry on Christmas morning!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Halloween Candy Overload

My dining room table is overflowing with Halloween candy. I made treat bags for my son's class. I am in the process of making treat bags for his teachers-nine when you include homeroom, art, gym, computer, etc..... They will have popcorn, candy, and Starbucks gift cards. For my trick or treaters I give out large size candy, and each child can take three.
Good thing I joined a gym...

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Enough with the turquoise...

Today was a beautiful fall day, and it was very productive for me. While switching the contents from my Balenciaga Maldives Aqua Work Bag to my Chanel Light Beige Grand Shopper I realized that my computer bag is turquoise and so is another tote bag that I have. They really remind me of Tiffany Blue. I love the color, but enough is enough. Time to mix things up a bit!

Mignon Faget Jewelry

Mignon Faget is a jewelry designer from New Orleans. It is said that every lady from New Orleans owns at least one piece of Mignon Faget jewelry. My friend lived near New Orleans for a few years and starting acquiring some M.F. pieces, and she introduced me to M.F. I love crowns, fleur de lis, and New Orleans, so of course I love M.F. I have a few pieces and always love to see her new designs so that I can add a piece to my collection. My first piece was a sterling silver crown pendant. The pendant and chain only cost $100.00, but I have received more compliments on that piece of jewelry than any other piece of (expensive) jewelry that I own! Do you have any Mignon Faget?

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Vampire Cabernet Sauvignon

I purchased this wine because I liked the label (I know that is not a good reason to buy wine) and thought it would be fun for Halloween. It was only $9.99 a bottle. It is not very good, and I am not recommending it. I don't know how it would be if it breathed more or if it would be purchased now and kept until next Halloween. At the same time I purchased this, I bought some Sterling and Rodney Strong cabernet sauvignons, and for a few dollars more they were much, much better.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Caribbean Blue Le Creuset

I love Le Creuset, and I use the Enameled Steel Stock Pot or the Soup Pot everytime I cook. I have both in Caribbean Blue. Their names are a bit misleading because both pots are on the small side-you couldn't really cook much stock or soup in either pot. They are perfect, though, for your normal family cooking.

Chicken Piccata

Because I work I have to have my menus planned in advance and have the groceries purchased during the weekend. If not, we are running to a restaurant and spending too much money on not so great food. Usually I am pretty good about planning menus and grocery shopping, but life has been busy, and I have been in a food slump. I am so uninspired and don't know what to cook anymore.
I made Ina Garten's Chicken Piccata recipe tonight, and it was very good. It was easy and delicious, and more importantly, everyone ate it!

2 split (1 whole) boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 extra-large egg
1/2 tablespoon water
3/4 cup seasoned dry bread crumbs
Good olive oil

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature, divided
1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (2 lemons), lemon halves reserved
1/2 cup dry white wine
Sliced lemon, for serving
Chopped fresh parsley leaves, for serving

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
Place each chicken breast between 2 sheets of parchment paper or plastic wrap and pound out to 1/4-inch thick. Sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper.
Mix the flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper in a shallow plate. In a second plate, beat the egg and 1/2 tablespoon of water together. Place the bread crumbs on a third plate. Dip each chicken breast first in the flour, shake off the excess, and then dip in the egg and bread crumb mixtures.
Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large saute pan over medium to medium-low heat. Add the chicken breasts and cook for 2 minutes on each side, until browned. Place them on the sheet pan and allow them to bake for 5 to 10 minutes while you make the sauce.

For the sauce, wipe out the saute pan with a dry paper towel. Over medium heat, melt 1 tablespoon of the butter and then add the lemon juice, wine, the reserved lemon halves, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Boil over high heat until reduced in half, about 2 minutes. Off the heat, add the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and swirl to combine. Discard the lemon halves and serve 1 chicken breast on each plate. Spoon on the sauce and serve with a slice of lemon and a sprinkling of fresh parsley.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

MIA for a reason-Fall Festival

Last weekend was the Fall Festival at my son's elementary school. I chaired the crafts. We had three crafts-tie-dye t-shirts, pumpkin painting, and sand bottles. In addition to the crafts, we also had face painting, hair painting, 15 games, a moon bounce, a bake sale, a cake walk, pumpkins and mums for sale, lots of food, and the fire department. It was a pretty typical fall festival for a school, but a lot of work for the few of us who chaired committees. Between working full time, having a family, and the fall festival, I have fallen a little bit behind at home, and therefore no blogging!
I was incredibly apprehensive about the tie-dye shirts because I have never made a tie-dye shirt before. A friend suggested using a kit by Dharma Trading Company. You mix the dye and pour it into squeeze bottles. The kids wear gloves and squirt the shirts with the dye. Five moms met at my house one evening and rubber banded all of the shirts in advance. After the child is finished dying their shirt, you place it in a grocery bag, and they take the shirt home, leave it in the bag for 24 hours, and then rinse it, remove the rubber bands, and launder. The shirts look amazing, and the colors are so bright and vivid-not the pastel look that you normally see. I highly recommend their kit.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

I don't need to hear another word about...

the Kardashian sisters' wedding, pregnancy, or reconciliation. EVER.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

One of those days...

I consider myself a pretty upbeat know-the glass is always half full. Today is just one of those days when I feel a little down. I feel a little underappreciated, Facebook is getting on my nerves, I met a friend at Starbucks and it was just a little strained (probably my fault), I am struggling to keep the house in order and feel like I am two steps away from it turning into a crack den, the economy is incredibly scary (and no I do not think it has turned the corner), and I don't know what else.

It is really hard to be a working mom and to do a good job at home and work, be active at your child's school, maintain friendships, be a good wife, etc.

Today I am struggling. Tomorrow will be better.

Does anyone else ever feel this way?

Monday, September 21, 2009

IPhone and Ifrogz Case

I am digging my new Iphone and pink Ifrogz case. Too much fun!!!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Balenciaga Work Bag

This is the bag I am carrying right now-a Balenciaga work bag. I think a blue color is nice in the spring and early fall. I love Balenciaga bags, but they do tend to get scuffed around the edges if you are not super careful.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Oreo Truffles

Oreo truffles are amazing-delicious and easy to make.
You will need:
One package of Oreos
One block of cream cheese
Chocolate bark or chips

Pulverize oreos in your food processor. You want them very fine. Add an entire block of cream cheese. Pulverize again until it forms a dough. Roll dough into walnut sized balls. Place in fridge for 1 hour or until firm. Melt chocolate in double boiler or microwave. Dip balls into the chocolate and lay on wax paper to harden.
I like them dipped in white chocolate with some dark chocolate drizzled on top.

Halloween Decorations

Grandin Road has a great and affordable selection of Halloween decorations. I always enjoy looking through their catalog. I get a lot of inspiration for my decorating from looking at catalogs.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Back to School

My son is back at school-2nd grade. It seems like the days fly by once school is in session. Basketball sign-up is tonight, and Lacrosse practice starts on Monday. He loves his teacher, so I am thrilled.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Halloween glasses

I have always enjoyed Halloween, but once you have children it moves up to a whole different level. It's a fun holiday without all of the pressure. Wine Enthusiast has these etched wine glasses on their website. They are so fun. You can purchase sets of two of each design or buy a box of six that has two of each design for a slightly discounted price. Wouldn't they make a great hostess gift for a Halloween party?

Friday, September 4, 2009

Kappa Prep's Fall Swap

I had such a great time participating in Kappa Prep's Fall Swap. The rules were pretty simple: Think Fall, Send at least Four items, and Spend $30 excluding shipping. My swap partner was Marla from Kinda...Sorta...Something. She sent me a Lilly Pulitzer note pad, a luggage tag, a package of Ultra Fine Sharpies, OPI's I'm Fondue of You nail polish, and Altoids dark chocolate covered mints. I love EVERYTHING she sent me and thoroughly enjoyed participating in the swap! I am definitely in the mood for fall!!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Mackenzie Childs Trio

I love this trio of jars from Mackenzie Childs. I put them in my online shopping chart, and my finger is just itching to push the "complete order" button. I am going to think about it, though, because although I love them, do I really need them and have a perfect spot for them? I will let you know what I do!

Friday, August 28, 2009

A Good Night

No pictures with this post...gasp!!! Tonight we had friends over for dinner. They have been our friends for a long time. My husband was friends with them before he and I met, and then the four of us became friends. The wife and I have never been BEST friends. I have tried. I don't know if it is the age difference or that she and I are just different people. The husband was my husband's best man. Another girlfriend of mine was my maid of honor. The wife hosted my baby shower with my maid of honor (five years after the wedding for those curious minds!). The husband and wife are my son's god parents. We actually have not seen a lot of them in the last two or three years and they live in the same neighborhood. They have two children who both became engaged this summer, so I sent them both gifts. I also offered to host engagement parties or anything else that they would like us to do. We were with them and two other couples two weekends ago at a function at our country club. Tonight they came over for dinner. I always get my hopes up that the closeness will continue. I am keeping my fingers crossed...

Have you had this experience?

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Monday, August 24, 2009

Dior Lemon Balm Polish

Dior Lemon Balm Nail Polish is a new color that is sold exclusively at Nordstrom's. I purchased it last week, and I would anticipate it being sold out very soon. I finally had the chance to paint my nails with it yesterday, and I love the color! It is hard to describe the shade, but it is a smokey shimmery brown with a tiny hint of plum. It has put me in the mood for Fall!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Hostess Blog-Feather Tree Centerpieces

Do you read the Hostess Blog? You should!!! She has the most amazing ideas for parties, and she tells you how to duplicate what she has done. Her pictures are so bright and colorful. She makes me want to throw a party everyday!!!

Guest Bath

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This is the guest bath. I used a beach theme with turquoise and sea blue walls. The colors are them combined for the ceiling. Crabtree and Evelyn’s La Source and India Hicks are the bath products use in this bath. Beach Cottage Studio sells the bottle on the windowsill and the covered electrical plate.