Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Wedding Wednesday - Honeymoon Dreams

I came across this image this morning and couldn't help but share. Its so sweet.  I love that the girl is on her tippy toes, the vintage luggage, the map, the fact that their necks make a sort-of-heart, I love the two images cropped together.....I love the whole thing.  It immediately made of think about the excitement surrounding a couple when they embark on their honeymoon!  Brand new rings, brand new name, brand new life, and travels.  Honeymoon's are awesome! 

Below are a few more pictures to rev your honeymoon & travel-in-general engines.

 Shut up on the color, huge soaking tub, and beach view.

 You. are. kidding.  REALLY?!

 Love this picture because it is VERY similar to my honeymoon experience in Vancouver.  xoxox

 Venice, Venice, how I love thee.  How awesome would it be to boat to your honeymoon suite?!

 The water, the little boats, oh my.

Paris. Enough said.
P.S. I love her tiny tulle skirt!

I think this is Tahiti. wowzers.

Spain, you stole my heart.  Don't tell Chris, okay?!
I want to stroll these streets, sip cafe con leche, and love my love in Spain.

Can you imagine strolling on an afternoon, honeymoon walk here?!
Love me some New Zealand!

I don't know where she is, but she is so honeymoon-relaxed right now. 
I can't even stand it!  Did I mention that I LOVE the red?!

Lovelies, where are you going on your honeymoon?  Where did you go? Beach, city, Europe, jungle, rain forest?  I want to know!

Do these inspire you to travel? I know I am inspired.  I totally want to be that girl reading above.

Happy planning!



P.S. I found all these images on Pinterest.  Although Pinterest is awesome, its not always easy to find photography credits.  Forgive me for all of the images being "unknown."

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Tuesday Ponderings

Image Source:
People generally see what they look for, and hear what they listen for.
                                                                                - To Kill a Mockingbird

This quote really touched me this Tuesday, lovelies.  I remember reading this book and this statement from the character Judge Taylor, as a kid.

Do you remember the book?  Did you love it like I did? What does this quote make you feel or think about?



Monday, August 29, 2011

Mother Earth Monday - Namaste, Y'all!

Image Source: Stilelibero

I'm feeling particularly yogic this morning, so I thought for this Mother Earth Monday, I would share a couple of awesome yoga companies and a few products.

First up is the New York Times #1 best earth-friendly yoga mat - The Original Eco Yoga Mat by Barefoot Yoga Co.

I'm pretty impressed with Barefoot's listing of earth friendly yoga products!  This hemp bag is cool, and this organic bra too ( I don't know about you, but I totally dig organic products over synthetic b.s. touching my ta tas!).  This line of recycled yoga pants by Prana is awesome, as well.

Secondly, UK based Stilelibero provides cork yoga mats!  How rad.  I guess buying a mat from the UK isn't that eco-friendly when you consider shipping, but I couldn't resist sharing the recycled cork!

Do you know of any other earth-friendly yoga companies or products?!  How many of you guys are yogis?! Yogitas (new yogis)?!

Namaste, y'all!



Friday, August 26, 2011

The Pink Monster, 4th and Final Edition!

Lovelies!  I am soooo excited to share the finale to my Pink Monster series with you.  It has been a long journey (beginning in June), but I have finally restored this mid-century piece into what I knew it could be.  Before I share the final product, let's journey back to where we started.

I bought this chair at an estate sale in Santa Monica in June, and was annoyed with it after it took more than 7 hours to remove the hot pink latex that I and named it the Pink Monster.  I removed the paint in step 1, sanded in step 2, and stained the chair in step 3.  When I say "I", I really mean we.  I could HAVE NEVER completed this chair project with my awesome huz!

Now on to the fun part!

Once we had the chair stained, it was time to reupholster.  I mastered this earlier this year when I re-did my dining room chairs

I picked out a super fun / retro bluebird pattern and we went to town!

Preparing to do the back of the chair.

Hard-working husband.

Back done!

Cushion done!

Now preparing for the front.
Unfortunately, I didn't get any shots of tacking the front.  It took both of us! 


 Notice my tack job?!  That a was huge pain in the arssssss. But, worth it.

Final product from behind.

 I think The Pink Monster deserves a new name, don't you?!!!

Any suggestions?!



It's Friday, I'm In Love...with..

Image Source: Smitten Kitchen
...this zucchini fritters recipe!

Did you know that August is national "find a way to sneak zucchini's onto your neighbors porch" month?!  I think this is going to be a yummy way to make use of all my zucchinis!

Image Source: From Me To You
...retro glam makeup! 

Jamie Beck of the blog From Me To You gives a fantastic tutorial here on how to pretty easily achieve this so gorgeous-glam look.

...finishing The Pink Monster!!!! (sneak peek!)

Check back later today for the whole post!

Image Source: The Martha Blog
...this adorable butter presentation!

Are you kidding me?!  This was done using a serrated Wusthof knife.  Guess who's got one of those?! ;)

Image Source: New York Times
...underwater sparkling wine.

Yes, you read that right.  This Italian dude ferments his bubbles under ocean bubbles!! Read the article here.  You better believe I am going to do WHATEVER it takes to get my hands on one of these bottles (even if it comes with some friendly starfish attached)!

Happy Friday, lovelies! I am so looking forward to the weekend.  It feels alot like summer here in LA so this weekend I am going to hit the beach, make some blackberry jam, pick out some tomatoes for drying & canning and enjoy the summer while its here.  All the while sending positive and helping energy back east....damn Irene.

What are your plans for the weekend?!

I hope it entails eating yummy food, and spending time with those you love (and hopefully checking back with me to see the final Pink Monster transition!).



Thursday, August 25, 2011

August Day Dreaming - Lavendar

Image Source:
On this day-dreamy Thursday, I want to share this AMAZING photo of a lavendar field in Provence, France.  Can you imagine how wonderful it must smell? mmmmmm....

Gazing at this picture inspires me to take a moment out of my busy evening tonight to light my lavendar scented candle, sip wine, and spend some quality time chatting with Christopher (all the while pretending that we are laying in that field and not on our couch. hehe.).

What does this this photo insprie you to do?!

Lovelies, tomorrow I will be sharing two posts,  my usual "Friday" series as well as The Pink Monster, Part 4!  It took me forever to do step 4!  You will see why tomorrow.  To refresh, take a look at part 1, 2 & 3 and check back with me a couple times tomorrow.


P.S. I had a Lavendar Drop cocktail on Tuesday @ Akasha in Culver City.  Its smelled just like lavendar and was dangerously delicous.  In case you want to try to make one yourself (I dare you!), ingredients included: Lavendar lemonade, Tru Organic lemon vodka, agave, martini.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Wedding Wednesday - Calm Those Nerves

In the months, weeks and  especially days before my wedding, I noticed my anxiety jump a little more with every passing second, every final decision.  Chris and I found it easier and easier to snap at each other over things as silly has how many packs of tissues should go in the welcome baskets, who should drive who's mom to the vineyard, and other unimportant things.

I saw this quote as I  was reflecting on our wedding / wedding planning experience last night ( I was looking at our rehearsal and rehearsal dinner pics that our photographer sent!) and wanted to share with all you brides and grooms to be.

When you have spent more than your budget allows, the color of the linens aren't exactly what you ordered and your florist can't tell the difference between roses and hydrangas, remember why you are dealing with all this in the first place!  You are getting married.  You are celebrating love.  The linens, flowers, tissues and party details really don't matter.

Keep calm and drink champagne.  If there is ever an excuse to stop, pop and sip on a Wednesday, its because you are engaged!

Happy Planning, lovelies.



P.S. I'll be sharing pics of the grooms cake I had made for Chris next week! Get excited.  Its a great one.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Sip of the Summer - Tinto De Verano

With summer waining, I have been doing all I can to enjoy the last of long days, warm nights, grilled foods and everything else summer. (In Santa Monica it will stay summer-ish into early October, but being the fall baby I am, let's be honest, the moment September arrives I throw out all the stops to welcome changing leaves & sweater weather!)

My waining-summer drink of choice recently has been Tinto De Verano which is translated to red wine of the summer in Spanish.  Re-introduced (after taking a 5 year break post-Spain) to me by my loving husband a week ago, I haven't been able to put it down.  It reminds of Barcelona, Spain, and Mediterranean summer. Happiness.

Tinto De Verano is essentially a lazy man's sangria.  The only differences are that it is super easy to make (takes less than 2 minutes), its less sugary (awesome) because it doesn't have any fruit in it and its carbonated like a spritzer = delicious.  I actually like Tinto De Verano better than Sangria!

To make this awesome deliciousness, you take red wine (the cheaper the better because you can't taste the wine, really) and mix it with something similar to Gaseosa which is a mild flavored low sugar carbonated lemonade common in Spain.  You can use any kind of carbonated flavored drink you like.  Diet Sprite, Orange Soda, Fanta, flavored water, etc.  Chris and I chose the Blood Orange Italian drink from Trader Joes...holy moly is it good.

Another awesome thing about Tinto De Verano is that you don't have to live at the mixing mercy of the person who made the cocktail because everyone mixes their own tinto!  Put out some red wine and the carbonated beverage and like the everyone go to town!

I personally like to do about 70% wine & 30% mix.

Done! Delicious. Easy. Less sugar.  What's not to love?!

Do you know of any other summer cocktails?  Have you had Tinto De Verano?  Are you excited to try?!

Let me know!



P.S. Lovelies!  I want to let you all know about Creative Cocktails For A Cure.  Its a fund raiser Chris and I are hosting to benefit the Alzheimer's Association.  Visit our donation page here and help us reach our goal of raising $3000 dollars by October 1st!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Mother Earth Monday - Belkin Products Rule!!!

Image Source:
I am super pumped to share three Belkin products with you today!  I had never heard of this company until I saw a random picture of this product and shame on me for that!  This company rules!

Okay, first of the three products is the Conserve Insight (pictured above).

For $29.99, you can get this bad boy which shows you how much energy your devices really use—including, the cost of operation, the amount of carbon dioxide (CO₂) produced in generating the electricity consumed, and watts. See at a glance the true impact to your wallet—and the environment.

This works on everything from your lights (are you remembering to turn them off?), fridge, TV habits, cell phone charging, blow dryer, etc.!

Image Source:

Second up is the Conserve Smart AV.

This awesome jobby automatically turns off up to 6 appliances when they are not in use!  TV, DVD, Sound system - the works! For you fiscally conservative folk, did you know that your idle TV costs an average of $76 / year?!  Just when the little red light is on?  What the what?!

The Conserve Smart AV is $29.99 and totally worth it.  Get it here.

Image Source:

Last, but certainly not least is the Conserve Socket.

At $9.99, this bad boy is your alarm clock, computer, light, fan yada, yada's new best friend!  It has 3 turn off settings (30 minutes, 3 hours, 6 hours) and at that low price, you can get them for every socket in your house.

I am obviously super stoked about these products!  What do you think?!  Cool?  Stupid?  Good investment?  Do you already use anything like these?!

Let me know, lovelies!



Friday, August 19, 2011

Its Friday, I'm In Love.....With...

Image Source: Photographer, William Garret
...this photo. 
 I mean, really? Holy beautiful. I am pretending that is Chris and I in our other Italian bodies and our other Italian life.  We do have a scooter...its pretty much us!

....angel hair pasta with sun-dried tomato pea pesto.

Talk about yummy!  Find the recipe here (I added in the sundried tomatoes).

Image Source: unknown (unfortunately! would love to give credit on this one.)
....this photo!
Totally true in my case.  I have legally been Lindsey Arotin for 1 month, today! hanging vase.
I LOVE IT!! Tutorial here

...relaxing in the twilight of summer.
My welcome sign says it all. 

 ...grilled corn on the cob.

Image Source:
....Great Danes, barefeet and a clear umbrella for the fall.

Any big plans for the weekend, lovelies?



Thursday, August 18, 2011

San Francisco Sourdough via Herman!

This is Herman. 

My mom first introduced us when I was just knee-high-to-a-grasshopper.  I didn't immediately fall in love with Herman.  But, after years of eating the delicious breads, rolls and cakes that he helped my mom make, I decided that we could, at the very least, be friends.  About a year ago, my mom helped me start my own Herman and now, I will share Herman with you!

Herman is a starter.  With Herman, you can make bread, bagels, pizza dough, cinnamon rolls, and tons of other stuff!  You do have to take care of him though.  I feed him once every five days and stir him every day (let's be honest, sometimes I forget, but I try!).  He lives in a container in my fridge.

My mom knows a lady that had the same Herman for like 18 years!  Isn't that crazy / kinda weird / awesome?!  I have killed my Herman twice.  Once on vacation and again over our honeymoon.  But, I have had this Herman going strong a little over 4 months. yay!

Here is the recipe in case you want a Herman too!

Herman Starter

2 cups flour
2 cups warm water
1 cup sugar
1 pkg active dry yeast

Grab a container that you want Herman to live in. Mix all the ingredients well, in that container.  Cover loosely and let stand overnight.  The next day, stir and place in the fridge.  Stir daily.  On day 5, feed Herman 1 cup flour, 1 cup milk and 1/2 cup sugar.  Stir daily for 4 more days.  On day 10, remove 1 cup of starter for baking and feed Herman as if it were day 5.  Repeat.

*Never use metal utensils to stir Herman - it kills him.  If fact, I have a special Herman wooden spoon.

I use Herman to help me make Chris bagels and whole wheat bread often, but a few weeks ago, I was feeling like doing something crazy and I used Herman and my mom's San Francisco Sourdough recipe to make sourdough bread. (My mom loves San Fransisco, so all sourdough has the prefix of being "San Francisco").  I dig it.

My San Francisco sourdough turned out to be super yummy.

This above picture is the sourdough before I let it rise.  

This is the sourdough when it was done. It was fantastic.

San Francisco Sourdough via Herman

*This recipe makes 2 loaves.

4 3/4 cups flour
2 1/2 tsps salt
1 cup warm milk
1 1/2 cups Herman starter
1 tbsp water
3 tbsps sugar
1 pkg active dry yeast
2 tbsps butter, softened
1 extra large egg (or 2 small)
1/4 chopped onion or sesame seeds (if desired)

In a large bowl, combine 1 cup flour, sugar, salt, yeast.  Add the milk and softened butter.  Slowly stir in Herman.  Mix in up to 3 3/4 cups flour (you may need a little more).  Turn mixture on to a floured surface and knead for 8-10 minutes (bicep / tricep workout - check).

Wash out your bowl, then cover the inside of the bowl with liquid oil (canola or veggie is just fine).  Place your dough in the bowl, then turn once so all surfaces of dough are covered with oil (so it doesn't stick!).  Cover the bowl with a dish towel and place in a warm area. (Not in front of an air conditioner or window - duh!).  Allow the dough to rise for 1 hour or until the dough doubles in size.  Punch down, literally with your fist! (This allows extra air to escape.)  Let the dough rest for 15 minutes. Divide the dough into 2 sections and shape into loaves.  Place into greased baking pans and allow to rise for 1 hour or until doubled in size.

Preheat oven to 375.

Get a little bowl and your egg / eggs and beat well.  Brush the egg over top of loaves.  Sprinkle with finely chopped onions or sesame seeds (if you want!)

Bake for 30-35 minutes.

** You can also make 1 long loaf and bake it in a cake pan.

Wow your friends with your bread making skills.


Have you ever heard of Herman or something like it?  Do you bake?  Do you have any yummy starter recipes? 

I have some great ones for the holidays and can't wait to share!



Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Wedding Wednesday - Let's Talk About Cake

Image Source: Unknown
I am not a big sweets gal.  Neither is my husband.  However, we knew that for our wedding we just HAD to have something for everyone in the cake area.  We decided to go with a teeny 4" cutting cake for us (you will see it was dahllling) and mini cupcakes of all different wine-infused flavors for our guests.  We were so happy with our decision, although I almost jumped for a replica of the above cake.  I thought it would be such a nice touch to go with my lovely-lace dress.

Here are some other cool cakes I found around the web.

Image Source: Martha Stewart
I so love the idea of different cake colors and flavors!  Why not mix it up and make all your guests happy?!

Image Source: Lauryl wedding!
See the teeny cupcakes behind?!
I just died for this bunting.  Isn't it sooooo precious.  Especially since our entire decor kinda revolved around the back-yard party, bunting theme.

Image Source: Martha Stewart
How sweet are these matching mini cakes?!  Everyone could have their very own and it could match your cutting cake!  Love this idea.

Image Source:
That wooden topper is soooo cute.  Don't you think?!  And I love the decadence of the chocolate and strawberry cake on the right.

This pattern is soooo awesome.  I can't stand it.

Image Source:
 Can't go wrong with a cupcake tower.  Ever.

Image Source:
Be still my lavender-loving heart.  Be still.

Image Source: unknown.
This is just totally awesome.  A Rice Krispy treat cake?!  What the what?!

What are you planning for your cake, my dears?  Small, big? One flavor, many flavors?  Cupcakes?  Rice Krispy treat cakes?!  Home made?  Using a bakery?  Tell me!

Happy Planning!