Rustic Relaxation

In the fall, I tend to favor rustic spaces over anything else. They are incredibly warm, earthy and relaxing to me. I'm hoping for at least 5 seconds of relaxation over the weekend. I have been insanely busy with work this week and will be throughout the weekend. The bags under my eyes are getting larger by the day. Cucumbers are definitely on my grocery list...

I hope you have a relaxing and happy weekend...

Images here

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Crystal Clear {My Home Office}

Remember this post about the new knobs that I purchased?? Well I finally installed them! I installed the larger ones in my master bath. I'll do a post on that later. Today, I wanted to show you what I did with the smaller knobs....

I planned to install these in my kitchen, but my cabinets are too light and the knobs just disappeared. So I found another place for them in my home office. 

If you missed original post on my office, it's fine because the pictures were a hot mess! Here are some better pics... 

 The desk came with oil-rubbed bronze knobs. Nice, but normal. I thought the crystal knobs would give it a little more zhush and add some sparkle. I also thought they would look great against the dark wood. 

The crystal knobs clearly win right?? Here is the new look...

It's such a small change, but it makes a big difference to me. The desk now has a little more style and personality, which I love. The knobs sort of remind me of diamond earrings and who doesn't love those??

I am actually in here working today. I'm wearing a t-shirt and some comfy pajama pants. My hair up in a clip and the is window up. Max is freshly groomed and is curled up on the chair. He looks happy. I must say that I am, too.

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Chicken Tortilla Soup

My favorite type of food in the whole wide world is Mexican food, so naturally my favorite soup is chicken tortilla soup. A great friend of mine gave me a cookbook that has the absolute most easiest recipe for this soup. Once the temperature dropped below 70, I had to whip this up. Here is what you need and what to do:

2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, sliced
1 chipotle in adobo sauce, minced
1 tablespoon of chili powder
2 teaspoons of kosher salt
6 cups of chicken stock
2 cups of frozen corn, thawed
2 fresh tomatoes, chopped or 1 can of Rotel tomatoes (makes it spicy!!)
2 cups of shredded rotisserie chicken
Juice of 2 limes
1/2 cup of cilantro, chopped

In a large pot, heat the olive oil. Add the onions, garlic, chipotle and chili powder. Cook for 5 minutes or until the onion softens. Add the chicken stock. Bring it to a boil, then simmer for 10 minutes. Add the corn and simmer for another 5 minutes. 

Turn off the heat, then add the tomatoes, chicken, cilantro and lime juice. Get a big bowl, ladle a few ladles of soup, top it with more cilantro, tortillas (I actually like mine on the side and use them for dipping) and maybe some diced avocado.

How easy is that?? I think you'll like it...

Image by me
Recipe derived from Food Network Favorites

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Babies, Brownies & Bridesmaids

Hi there! How was your weekend? Mines was great! I went to Pilates,  had a 2 hour lunch on a patio with a good friend, errands, worked, etc, etc... Here are a few highlights...

I got one of the two diaper cakes completed...

I so enjoy making these cakes for baby showers. This one is going to be shipped to Florida. I have never shipped any of my cakes before, so I am praying that it makes it there in one piece!

After I finished the cake, I made some good ol' Duncan Hines fudge brownies. Simple and quick. I ate a few of the corners (I love the crunchy corners) and did some food styling...

I started dabbling with food styling shortly after I finished my photography class. I never thought I would put time into making sure that a scoop of ice cream was perfectly round or that the edges of a brownie were almost straight. Call me crazy, but I find all of that to be quite therapeutic...

I snuggled on the couch Saturday night and watched Bridesmaids. That is the funniest movie I have seen in a LONG time! I was literally rolling on the couch laughing. I am so thankful for the power of laughter and downtime. I needed it. 

How was your weekend?

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I'd Pay Money...

I would pay money to spend the weekend in that bedroom. So pretty... It's no secret that I love white bedrooms, but this room really had me at those antique mirrored closet doors. Love them...

What's on your weekend to-do list? I've got two diaper cakes to make, but the first thing on my list is to see Bridesmaids. I still haven't seen it! I'm definitely in need of a good laugh. From what I hear, I won't be disappointed...

Happy weekend!

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The Man Chair

Football season here, so I am sure the use of the "man chair" is in full swing. One of my biggest fears is that my future husband have this huge ugly leather club chair or recliner that he refuses to part with. The whole consolidation of furniture thing kinda freaks me out. I like my stuff... Just being honest.

I was browsing tumblr the other day and saw some photos that made me feel a little better...

I'm not sure if my future home will be rustic like these spaces, but these photos prove a point. All of these chairs are big, brown, old and unappealing- by themselves. But they have been jazzed up with throw pillows and beautiful throws. The accessories nearby compliment the chair as well.

So I guess the key will be to compromise. He can have his chair and I can buy whatever I want to go on it and around it. Right? The goal for me would be to choose things that are within reason...

But it might be difficult (I really love that blanket)...

Did any of you have a crazy experience when you consolidated your furniture with your significant other?

Images 1,3/2/4
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On Order: ZARA

It's customary for me to treat myself after I have endured a stressful time. Sometimes my treats are small, like maybe a chocolate cupcake or two. Sometimes they are big. I met a deadline at work last week and well, I needed something a little bigger than a chocolate cupcake. So first I bought my watch, then I headed to

I'm THRILLED that they are now selling everything online! It's quite lethal though... I saw tons of things I wanted, but I was good and only bought the following...

I originally fell in love with this bag when I saw Olivia Palermo carrying it in this pic...

And I KNEW I made the right decision when I saw Emily's photo on Monday...

I just adore the clean lines and the classic look. It might be too big to carry on a daily basis, but I think it would make a great work or travel bag. 

I also bought this tube dress...

It's perfect for fall and perfect for work- and it will go perfect with my new bag! I'm just hoping that it isn't itchy...

Next on my list are these jeans...

These are so cute- on her. Jeans that look good on one girl can look like a disaster on me, so I wouldn't dare buy these online. I could write an entire post (and probably will) regarding my thoughts on shopping for jeans. In short, I hate it. But I will have to pull myself together and try these on at the store.

Have you bought anything from

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Apple Turnovers

My absolute most favorite fall dessert is anything that includes apples and cinnamon. They just scream comfort and warmth to me. After my long nap on Friday, I turned to the Food Network and saw Ina Garten making apple turnovers on her show. I thought, "Perfect."

One thing I always do when I read a recipe is figure out how to change it and make it my own. Ina's recipe includes dried cherries. I wanted something a little more tart, so I used dried cranberries instead.

I don't have any windows in my kitchen (blah), so I had to tote my cutting board that was covered in flour to my dining room table, which gets great light, for photos. I had to do it in a hurry so that the puff pastry wouldn't get too warm in the process. I spent a while cleaning up the flour...

But it was so worth it! They are crispy, warm and tart. I took them to work yesterday and they got rave reviews! Click here for the recipe. You won't be disappointed. Promise. 

One more thing... Sprinkle them with powdered sugar when they come out of the oven. I didn't do that, but I wish I did...

Linking up with Tasty Tuesdays!

Images by me
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Happy Little Things

Hi guys! I hope you had a great weekend! Mines was FAB-U-LOUS! It was so good to have a little break from the everyday routine. I took a LONG nap on Friday, did lots of shopping, cooking and reading. The whites of my eyes are white again instead of various shades of red and I have a fresh mani/pedi. I'm happy. Here are some other happy little things in my world right now...

I haven't had the time to decorate my new office yet, but I do grace it with fresh flowers every week. I just get a cheap little bunch from the grocery store and they really do help me get through the week. I'm loving my Anthro mug, too.

Over the weekend, I indulged in spicy tuna sushi and sweet potato fries. I love them- together. Weird I know, but it's so good! I also made some apple turnovers. They were delectable. The recipe will be up tomorrow!

I'm a lover of Sprite Zero, but have realized that it might be contributing to my migraines. I recently switched to San Pellegrino with fresh lime juice and LOVE IT. And of course Pilates does a body good, too. I went to my first session in 4 weeks yesterday. That's me doing "the hundred." I will never, in life, go that long without a session again. I'm certainly paying for it today.

 I have had my eye on the MK classic gold watch for months and I finally treated myself to it. The bangles are from Target. Ha. I also finished Grace's book this weekend and I am amazed at every page. Grace is truly inspiring and her book is a must read for lovers of design and DIY.

What happy little things are going on with you right now? 

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Working Girl

Hello! I hope you had a great weekend! The weather was quite beautiful here and I enjoyed as much as I could when I was out running quick errands or going from my office to my car. I have a huge deadline this week for work, so I worked most of the weekend away. Unfortunately, I didn't have much time to put any posts together, browse blogs, cook or photograph anything this weekend. I felt like a part of me was missing... Ugghh...

I am going to take the rest of this week off so that I can focus on work and get some rest when I can. I will be back next week. Hopefully my life and my blog will be back together by then!

Have a great week!

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He's Not Perfect

I rarely talk about relationships here on the blog, but I found this to be incredibly profound and had to share. All of this is easier said than done, but I think it is a great reminder of what's real and what's important- as it is often so easy to forget. I heart Bob Marley...

Happy Weekend.


Image: Jose Villa 

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Thank Goodness

Thank goodness there is no random rule about having or liking a white bathroom after Labor Day. That would not be good...

Images 1/2/3

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Mixed Berry Jam

I hope you all had a great Labor Day weekend! I labored most of it, but it's all good!

I have a treat for you today! Giada made a mixed berry jam on her show a few weeks ago and it brought back some good memories for me. When I was a kid, my family and I would visit my grandmother who lived deep in the country. One thing I looked forward to the most was breakfast. Grandma made the BEST homemade biscuits! I used to take a biscuit, cram the inside with jam and take a big bite. The jam would then end up on me. But I loved it. 

Giada's recipe includes thyme, but I didn't have any on hand when I made this- and it still turned out perfect.

I took these fresh fruits...

some pure maple syrup, and turned them into this...

All natural. No preservatives. Six ingredients. And SO good! Here is what you need and what to do:

1 lb of fresh strawberries- organic ones have the most flavor
2 cups of fresh blueberries
2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons of fresh orange juice
1 teaspoon of lemon zest
1 cup of pure maple syrup

Add the strawberries and blueberries to a medium sauce pan. Take a potato masher and mash the berries. This will help them break down quicker. Add the lemon juice, orange juice, lemon zest and maple syrup.  Stir, then turn on the heat to about medium. Bring the mixture to a simmer, reduce the heat and cook for about 50 minutes. You will know it's ready when it's thick and has reduced by about half. Be sure to stir often, especially during the last 15 minutes of cook time. Remove from the heat and let it cool for about an hour.

Slap the jam (that's the country term) on some crusty bread, toast or a biscuit. Take a big bite and you will just smile. Promise. 

Refrigerate in an air-tight container and store for up to 1 month. 

Images by me
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