Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Preppy Cool

Photos courtesy of Sung Shin

Shirt, shorts-H&M (recent)
Bracelets, ring-David Yurman, Neiman Marcus
Shoes-Dolce Vita (bought at TJ Maxx)

I've always been a fan of the preppy look and a big influence is probably due to the fact that I grew up on the east coast. I wouldn't label my style full on prepster but I do notice it shows up in it's own way in my outfit choices and the clothes I tend to buy. For me, I like to add a twist to the preppy look, whether it be adding chunky jewelry or mixing it in with funky shoes.

I recently bought this shirt because I was attracted to the vibrant colors and the madras plaid. It can be versatile enough so you can wear it to work or dressed down for a more casual look to run errands, wear to school, meet friends, etc.

Hope you're surviving the short week so far and the humidity. Have a great week and talk to you soon. xo.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Weekend Snapshots

This weekend I....

1. Bought a little vase from CB2 Georgetown (on sale now) to use for my bedside table. My table isn't too big for a lot of space so this cute vase was the perfect size. There's something about waking up to a fresh bloom every morning that just brings a smile to your face.

2. Attended two different birthday BBQs for my friend's babies. It's a strange realization when the birthday parties you used to attend have now shifted and they've become birthday parties for their kids.

3. Went to dim sum with a bunch of friends for brunch. If you haven't eaten dim sum before, I highly recommend it. In certain Chinese restaurants, waiters roll around a cart full of ready-to-serve bite sized food (steamed dumplings, Chinese broccoli, pork buns, etc). You have the option to pick and choose what's on the cart while seated at your table.

4. Began reading the ever popular book, Fifty Shades of Grey. It's been on the New York Times bestseller list for quite some time (I think Hollywood is making a movie out of it soon) and have been curious about the hype. It's about a sexual affair that occurs between two very different people that centers around control and exploration of one's desire. Umm yea.

5. After prepping for some upcoming blog posts, my photographer friend and I went out to eat for some good ol' greasy, not very healthy for you burgers and nachos. It was a good way to close the night.

How was your weekend?

Friday, May 25, 2012

NomNom: Cranberry Granola

Happy Friday everyone!

You know what I absolutely love? Simple recipes that turn out to be GREAT. Can you tell by now I love to make easy stuff? It's a good thing to discover recipes like those because they could change your life in a good, stress free way.

Let's talk granola. Let's talk Greece. It's been about a year since I traveled to Greece and I've been yearning to travel again lately to an undiscovered place. I miss the excitement of traveling to a foreign country and even the stress that comes with planning a big trip to an unknown country. It's a detail oriented process but the end result is so worth it.

One of the things I love to discover during my trips obviously deals with food. While vacationing in Greece, I noticed there would be little snack shops that sold Greek yogurt with toppings! It reminded me of ice-cream shops here in the states--same concept, different key player. When I first had my taste of plain Greek yogurt, I was disgusted. It was bland and sour. Not cool.

I was hesitant to try it again during my trip but hey, I believe in second chances. So here's the thing, they love to drizzle HONEY over their Greek yogurt. What da what? I mean I've seen fruit as toppings but honey?? Maybe I'm new to the game but it was a new concept to me. The yogurt shop also had toppings such as granola and fresh fruit which I added as well, and that was pretty much the end of it for me.

Granola is such an easy, delicious, healthy, bulk yielding thing to make that you'll never want to get store bought stuff. To me, the best way to eat granola is to have it as a topping on Greek yogurt, adorned with your favorite fruit and drizzled in glorious, sweet honey. It's a reminder of my travel to Greece and also a healthy breakfast or snack to have.

How is everyone going to enjoy their extra long weekend? I have a couple of birthday BBQs to attend and shopping on the agenda which I'm looking forward to. BBQS, friends, and shopping=weekend to look forward to.

Have a GREAT weekend.

Ingredients (Adapted from
8 cup Oat
1 1/2 C Wheat germ
1 1/2 C Oat bran
1 1/2 C sunflower seeds
1 C finely chopped almonds
1 C finely chopped pecans
1 C finely chopped walnut
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 C brown sugar
1/4 C maple syrup
3/4 C honey
1 C vegetable oil
1 T cinnamon
1 T vanilla
2 C raisin or dried cranberries

1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Line two large baking sheets with parchment or aluminum foil. 

2. Combine the oats, wheat germ, oat bran, sunflower seeds, almonds, pecans, and walnuts in a large bowl. Stir together the salt, brown sugar, maple syrup, honey, oil, cinnamon, and vanilla in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat, then pour over the dry ingredients, and stir to coat. Spread the mixture out evenly on the baking sheets.

3.  Bake in the preheated oven until crispy and toasted, about 20 minutes. Stir once halfway through. Cool, then stir in the raisins or cranberries before storing in an airtight container.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Easy Does It

Photos courtesy of Sung Shin

Tank top-H&M (recent)
Jeans-Paige Denim
Hat-Lerner New York 
Shoes-Jessica Simpson
Cuff-Kenneth Jay Lane
Necklace-Alexis Bittar

Note to self: Don't try walking on unpaved roads/street while wearing wedges.

I bought this tank top recently at H&M and was immediately attracted to it because of the wide stripes (I'm a huge proponent for stripes) and the loose fit. When the weather gets warm, especially during the summer, I tend to gravitate towards comfortable, loose fitting tops. They give off a casual and easy look but if worn right with accessories, you can look effortless.

Perhaps I'll wear this again for the memorial day weekend to kick off summer;)

Monday, May 21, 2012

Weekend Snapshots

This weekend I...

1.Went frame hunting and successfully found all the sizes I want so I can build my gallery wall of travel photos. All my photos are printed and now it's a matter of hanging and arranging.

2. Dined at Nava Thai in Wheaton, MD. I had a craving for Thai food and in my opinion, I this place has the best thai food in MD. There's a dish they have called the Floating Market soup where the name derives from the floating markets stall in Bangkok. It reminds me of a spicier version of Pho but the soup's broth has hints of sweet, sour, spicy and salty. Not only is the noodle in a noodle dish important, but the key player in a noodle soup dish is the broth and this dish alone will make me keep coming back.

3. Was gifted my first Butter nail polish by my friend Mel. I absolutely love this vibrant shade of teal and must admit that I probably wouldn't have bought this myself because of the price tag for a nail polish ($14), so thank you dear!

4. Stopped by my parent's house to visit them as they just got back from vacationing from Turkey and Greece. My mom bought me this gorgeous mini bowl set from Turkey which I will definitely be using as dipping sauces. She knows my taste very, very well. Thank you Mom.

5. Restocked on some lip glosses from Revlon at the drugstore. I ran out of 'Shine city' (2nd from left), a neutral gloss that is the perfect shade to put over a matte lipstick color or if you just want to add some shine to your lips. I also love 'Pink Afterglow' (1st from left) because it gives just the right amount of berry color and high gloss to your lips. Some new products from Revlon I bought were from their Just Bitten line. It reminds me of a crayon and is a balm and lipstain in one. I bought the shades, 'Twilight' and 'Flame' but unsure about the Twilight color after applying it on my lips. The Flame, however, is a great pop of red for your lips.

6. On another unrelated note, please check out one of my outfit posts that is featured today on Refinery 29's article on "7 So-Smart Tricks For Styling Summer Shorts — The Chic Way" HERE!

How was your weekend?

Friday, May 18, 2012

An Oldie But a Goodie

Photos courtesy of Sung Shin

Shirt-Old Navy
Shoes-Jessica Simpson
Bracelet-Kenneth Jay Lane
Necklace-Alexis Bittar

Happy Friday everyone! When I first purchased this red pants, I immediately thought about pairing them with my beloved chambray shirt. I've worn this combination awhile back HERE with a red skirt and couldn't resist repeating it again with these red pants. One of the things I love to do with my wardrobe is to remix it again and again to get good use from it;) 

Trends are fun to dabble in but I always ask myself before buying if I'd be able to wear it again in several different ways.

It's supposed to be a beautiful, sunny weekend here in Washington, DC and I hope you enjoy it whatever you do. Thanks for stopping by=)

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

NomNom: Mini Cinnamon Rolls

Several weeks ago, my friend, who currently lives in Arizona emailed me saying that she would be in town and wanted to get together to catch up. She moved to Arizona as soon as we both graduated pharmacy school to take a job position there so those days where we would see each other for 4 years turned scarce after graduation. We bounced back ideas on places to eat and I figured why not just invite her over my place (she hasn't seen it since I moved) and cook brunch for her. She was SUPER eager with this idea, go figure.

It's a personal thing when you invite a friend over to your home and cook for them. A lot of thought and love goes into prepping for the menu and obviously much love goes into what you're cooking. I wanted to do this for her because I appreciate her friendship. She's one of the most down to earth, kind, unfussy girls you'll ever meet and this was especially shown when I went to visit her in Arizona last year. 

My flight was over 2 hours delayed and I was starving by the time I had landed. Since I was in mid flight there was no way of letting her know that the first thing I wanted to do was eat something asap. When I landed, she somehow knew (smart girl, I tell ya) that I'd be hungry and greeted me with a hug and sandwich in hand. So thoughtful, right? It's always those acts of kindness from people that makes a mark on me. Always. There are several other acts of kindness that happened during my visit, but I'll leave those stories for my next recipe post.

I already had a savory dish in mind to make that morning (a fantastic quiche recipe coming soon) but needed something sweet to add to the menu. I made these extremely easy, moist, and magnificent mini cinnamon rolls before and decided to make these again because it just seemed to fit the part for brunch. Now, when I say easy, I'm talking about using store bought dough! Total time saver! All you have to do is brush the dough with glorious amounts of sugar and cinnamon and roll that baby up.

Roll then cut. Easy.

Bake them in mini muffin pans to help maintain the shape. Brilliant!!!

Eat immediately while warm. Immediately.

So the original recipe called for the icing to be made from maple syrup but when I tried to make the icing based off that recipe, the icing came out too watery. The consistency was way off even though I kept trying to add more sugar to it. So this time, I used Test Kitchen's recipe for cinnamon roll icing and hit the jackpot. Yea, baby.

Ingredients for rolls (Adapted from Yields 14
1-8oz tube crescent roll dough
2 Tablespoons butter
brown sugar

For the icing (Adapted from America's Test Kitchen)
2 Tablespoons of buttermilk
2 Tablespoons cream cheese, softened
1 cup of confectioners' sugar

1. Preheat oven according to crescent roll dough package directions. Layout half the dough (4 triangles) and pinch all the seams together. Flip over and pinch the seams on the back side together too.

2. Using a rolling pin, smooth the seams and roll the dough into a square about 1/4″ thick. Brush with half the butter, and sprinkle with as much cinnamon and brown sugar as you want. Roll into a log and cut into 8 pieces.

3. Place mini cinnamon rolls into a non-stick sprayed mini muffin tin. Repeat steps 1 and 2 with the other half of the crescent roll dough. Bake according to package directions. Cool about 5 minutes before glazing.

4. Meanwhile, whisk the cream cheese and buttermilk in a large bowl until thick and smooth (the mixture will look like cottage cheese at first). Sift the confectioners’ sugar over the mixture and whisk until a smooth glaze forms about 30 seconds.

5. Spoon the glaze evenly over the buns; serve immediately.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Simply Mint

Photos courtesy of Sung Shin

Shoes-Vera Wang Lavender Label
Rings-David Yurman, vintage

My favorite color right now is the ever popular spring '12 color, mint. I've been wearing these pants on a daily basis and I wanted the colored pants to shine through on today's outfit post by pairing it with the simplicity of a crisp white blouse. It's an easy look to achieve and you could interchange your shoes with a solid colored pump, but I couldn't resist adding leopard to the outfit;) 

My recent splurge was this Hermes cuff called the Collier de Chien. The band is made of a beautiful, smooth leather and the color was a no brainer because orange is the classic color of Hermes. It's classic, chic and edgy. I see this as an investment piece (it's been around since the 1940's) and I have no regrets on this purchase because it has proved to stand the test of time.

Readers, do you have an investment piece you have or would like to purchase?

Monday, May 14, 2012

Weekend Snapshots

This weekend I....

1. Woke up early to make brunch for a friend who was visiting from out of town. I made quiche, mini cinnamon rolls, and granola to eat with a yogurt parfait. It was a great time of catching up on life happenings on work, relationships and good ol' girl talk. I realized over the years that a good, quality friendship will never change even though distance becomes an issue as long as that strong foundation is there from the beginning and is maintained through the years.

2. Made a 5 layered dip to take to a bbq. I made this at the boy's place which was a mistake because he doesn't own a food processor!! Therefore his job was to mash the black beans and that was a sight to see.

3. Hiked through Great Falls since we couldn't last weekend due to the rain. It was a gorgeous day to be outside and apparently others thought so too because several people were barbequing and hiking through the park.

4. Ran some errands around College Park, MD and stopped by my favorite gyro place called Marathon Deli for lunch. It's a family owned Greek restaurant so you won't find it anywhere else and their gyros are as close as what you would find in Greece. The owner is also exceptionally nice and welcoming and is a fellow dog lover so him and I were conversing on the joys of owning a dog after lunch=)

5. Was introduced to the most expensive store bought ice cream by my friend. He has been raving about this ice-cream and how he's been wanting to try it after reading it on Serious Eats, so we finally stopped by Whole Foods (only certain grocery stores carry this brand) to buy some. Did I mention that's expensive?? It's $9.99 a PINT! But I have to admit the flavors are outrageously good. My favorite between the two was the Brambleberry Crisp. It's blackberry and blueberry jam mixed in with oat stresuel in a honey vanilla bean ice-cream. It was easily finished between the two of us.

How was your weekend?

Friday, May 11, 2012

Spring Layers

Photos courtesy of Sung Shin

Gingham shirt-J.Crew
Shorts-Old Navy
Shoes-Jessica Simpson
Hat-Lerner New York
Ring-David Yurman 

Happy Friday everyone! The sun is FINALLY out after being showered with rain and dismal weather for the past couple of days. Today's weather here in Washington, DC is not exactly the warmest but not exactly the coldest either so I wanted to feature an outfit on spring layering. 

Usually when I know I'm going to be out all day and the weather is mild, I like to carry a cardigan, a light jacket or a light sweater when the temperatures drop at night. I also wanted to pattern mix by pairing stripes with my favorite gingham shirt. 

I've showed a couple different ways I like to wear this gingham shirt HERE and HERE and this will probably be the last pairing I do with this particular shirt for awhile since the weather is starting to warm up now. So if you're sick of seeing it already, you won't have to see it for some time;)

Have a great weekend and thanks for visiting.  

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

By the Water: Mint+Stripes

Photos courtesy of Sung Shin

Shirt-Abercrombie & Fitch (old)
Shoes-Vera Wang Lavender Label
Necklaces-David Yurman, vintage
Hat-Lerners New York

I've been wearing these mint pants I bought recently at H&M lately and am having a major lovefest with them. I know that the color mint is huge this season but I didn't realize how versatile they could be until I started experimenting with different pairings. I have another outfit coming up soon that involves these mint pants so please stay tuned=)

Have you jumped on the mint bandwagon too?

Monday, May 7, 2012

Weekend Snapshots


This weekend I...

1. Dined at Matchbox. They're known for their wood fired oven pizzas and their mini sliders, called the 3-6-9. The pizza is good but it's not the best I ever had. The sliders though are delicious and juicy and topped with onion straws which are very addicting. Nom.

2. Saw the much anticipated movie, The Avengers. I'm a Marvel Comic freak (hello, confession time) and have been waiting for this movie to come out after seeing the movies leading up to it. A bit long but very entertaining. Highly recommend. Oh, and stay until the credits end;)

3. Celebrated Cinco De Mayo by ordering margaritas and munching on quesadillas. But then again, who needs an excuse to order margaritas?

4. Ended up going furniture shopping for the boy in Georgetown. The original plan was to go hiking in Great Falls but it started to rain which soured our plans. We decided to head to Georgetown to look for sofas for his place because he wants to redecorate. Georgetown Cupcakes was nearby so I had to stop by my favorite cupcake shop for a mid afternoon treat. Obviously.

5. Finally printed some of my recent travel pics from Greece and Italy. I have more to print from last years travel to Egypt, Austria, and Argentina because the plan is to dedicate a wall in my place for places I've traveled to=)

How was your weekend?

Friday, May 4, 2012

NomNom: Chorizo Pinto Bean Nachos

My sister and I have a tradition every month or so. Whenever we both are working late on a Friday night, we'll try to meet up for what we call, "a late night vent session" over not so good for you food. 

One of those foods we always try to order are cheesy, some sort of meat involved nachos.

When she told me that she wanted to come over my place, I immediately thought of this chorizo nacho recipe that's been bookmarked for some time now. The only qualm I had with this recipe was that it include beans and this girl is not a fan of any sort of beans. To this day, she's the type of sister that will pick out the beans in her meal and move them over to my plate. How...cute.

But I still went ahead and made these nachos HA. If only you could see the face she made at me when I told her these nachos included beans...

So these might be the best nachos I ever made. That's a pretty bold statement right? But it's true. I don't know if it's a mixture from the smokiness of the chorizo with the habanero cheddar in combination with the bechamel sauce but these nachos are damn good. So good in fact, that my sister didn't pick out the beans! She actually devoured the beans. That speaks volume, no?

Coincidentally, tomorrow is Cinco de Mayo and I can't think of a more fitting dish to help celebrate the holiday by eating these nachos. Oh and let's not forget margaritas;)

Have a great weekend.

Ingredients (Adapted from
For chorizo and pinto bean topping
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 large onion, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 jalapeño, seeded and chopped
2/3 pound ground Mexican-style chorizo
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon cumin
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 (15-ounce) can pinto beans, drained and rinsed

For habanero queso sauce
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon flour
1 cup milk
1 1/2 cups habanero cheddar cheese (If you can't find Cabot's habanero cheddar, use a good pepper Jack instead), grated

For serving
1 bag of salted tortilla chips
3 green onions, dark greens removed, minced
Salsa, optional for serving
Sour cream, optional for serving
Guacamole, optional for serving 

1. Make the topping: In a large skillet or soup pot, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion, garlic, and jalapeño. Sauté until the vegetables are soft and fragrant, but not browned, about 7 minutes.

2. Add the chorizo, chili powder, cumin, and break up into small crumbles with a wooden spoon. Season generously with salt and pepper. Sauté until the chorizo is browned and almost cooked through, about 8 minutes.

3. Add the beans and stir to combine. Continue cooking to blend the flavors, 5 minutes. 

4. Meanwhile, make the cheese sauce: melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Once it starts to foam and is completely melted, whisk in the flour, whisking for 1 minute

5. Slowly whisk in the milk. Bring the mixture to a boil, whisking occasionally. Once it starts to boil, immediately remove from the heat and whisk in the shredded cheese by the handful. Keep warm

6. To assemble the nachos: spread the tortilla chips in an even layer on a large serving platter or across four plates. Generously pour the cheese sauce over the chips taking care to cover as many chips as possible.

7. Top with the meat and bean mixture, once again covering all the chips. Drizzle with the remaining cheese sauce and sprinkle with green onions.

8. Drizzle with salsa and dollop with sour cream and guacamole, if using. Enjoy immediately.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Shades of Blue

Photos courtesy of Sung Shin

Necklace-Alexis Bittar
Cuff-Kenneth Jay Lane
Shoes-KORS by Michael Kors 
Sunglasses-Stella McCartney

I've been loving the rich blue colors of this blouse as seen HERE and HERE and these colored denim jeans lately and wanted to pair them together since they are in the same color family. I love that though they are each different shades of blue, there is a certain cohesiveness to the outfit with a hint of subtle color difference.

Readers, do you ever incorporate similar solid color shades into one outfit?