Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Trouser Perfection

Sooooo - I have a confession. I wear the same pants every day. Not the same pair of course but the same brand, the same style, different colors and fabrics. Express Editor Pants have been around for several years, I discovered them in college when shopping options were limited at the town's tiny mall and I've kept buying them over the years. The fit is fantastic - straight cut with slightly flared legs, fitted at the waist with a little give around the rear. I bought my first pair 6 years ago and I threw them away last year so I definitely think they're good quality. I currently own about 11 different colors and in summer fabrics and winter fabrics. Recently Express released a line of thick waist band editors that I like as well to keep any winter tummy rolls smooth under your top. Express also has the Illustrator pant for curvier girls and the Stylist wide leg trouser meant for smaller waists. I'll probably buy these as long as they make them, I love the buy 1 get 1 50% sale Express has a few times a year and I get rewards for making Express purchases. I haven't found a pant yet that I prefered over these. I also own a few pairs of the city shorts and cropped pants in the Editor style and I have had a pair of the denim trousers before.
The basic colors and prints are $49.50, wide waistband editors are usually around $59.50, and specialty fabrics and prints are usually $79.50. Specialty fabrics and prints do not come in long or short lengths.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

In the kitchen: Stuffed Mushrooms

I tried these little darlings last weekend when the boy was in town as a low fat side dish. The recipe came from Diana's blog, she has some new ideas on the traditional clean diet and she has some great recipes incorporating fresh produce into tasty dishes.

The stuffed mushrooms I've made in the past actually had stuffing (like pepperage farm brand) in the mixture. Here is the variation of her recipe that I used.

1 box whole white button mushrooms
1/4 cup low fat cream cheese
1-2 T low fat Parmesan cheese
1t ground black pepper

 Scrub mushrooms with a damp paper towel to get off any surface dirt. Scoop the stem from each mushroom and place in a bowl. Place the clean mushroom cap side down on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Take all the stems and chop finely, add low fat cream cheese, parm cheese, and pepper and stir blend together. Using a teaspoon place small amount of filling into mushroom cap. Bake at 400* for 15 minutes. *I liked the texture so much I think I'll play around with this recipe next time. Maybe add some finely chopped onion or forgo the Parmesan cheese and add some herbs for a different flavor. I'm pretty sure I'll be making these for some upcoming parties.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Puppy Love

Nights like this where I'm sitting around the house wishing I had something warm to snuggle to, I start dreaming of being a mommy to a sweet puppy. Honestly I would have gotten one already except I'm waiting until I can get some kind of yard for a dog to play in. There aren't many dogs that I feel any connection with but I absolutely love dachshunds. My ex boyfriend (the one I lived with) had one and I think this breed is fantastic. Meet Doodle Bug, this is me holding him at a church picnic when Luke and I were still dating. He was the love of my life - when we broke up he took Bug and Lilly came with me. I miss his sweet puppy face :-(
I found this image on Google, I love this gray and black dapple coloring.
This is my friend Starr's puppy. Look at that whiskey colored coat and that liver colored nose.
Starr's puppy again - CUTE!
My boyfriend is wanting one of these roly poly puppies in his life. I definitely think they're neat dogs. On the show Greatest American Dog, Tillman the bulldog was my favorite contestant.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

In the Kitchen: Tacos in Pasta Shells

I tried this recipe that the(chloe)conspiracy posted last week over the weekend with my boyfriend and we both loved it. I modified it a bit. I took several photos but none of them looked as appetizing as the dish really is. My shells kept sliding around on the salad greens and my sour cream looked like it had been lumped on, not nearly as delicate as the Blue Daisy commercial. Chloe's photos definitely look more resturant menu quality so check out her blog for the original post.

1 box jumbo shell pasta (I didn't use a whole box)
1 large jar Pace Salsa Mild
1 lb leanest ground beef
6 oz cream cheese (low fat)
1 T chili powder approx
1 cup shredded mexican cheese blend
Salad Greens Mix
low fat sour cream 

Cook shells for 15 minutes in boiling water. In another pan brown the beef and mix in chili powder. Drain beef and add cream cheese and half the jar of salsa and heat through. Drain shells and stuff each with the beef mixture, lay them in a row in a casserole dish. Top all the stuffed shells with the remaining salsa and top liberally with cheese. Melt the cheese in the oven 350* for about 15 minutes. In each bowl I placed 1 cup of greens and 3 stuffed shells with a dollop of low fat sour cream. DELICIOUS!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Weekend Shopping Spree

My Purchases: Essie Polishes - Mink Muffs, Damsel in a Dress, Neo Whimsical
Philosophy Lip Gloss in Cinnamon Buns and L'Oreal Voluminous in Carbon Black
Mink Muffs after 2 coats, please excuse the mess. I took this photo before bed when my nails were slightly wet still.

Charlotte Russe Basic Tanks for layering $7.50 ea and earrings $4.00 Victoria's Secret Panties 7 for $25 (1 is in the wash)

My boyfriend came for a 3 day weekend and we had so much fun. We tried out a brazillian resturant that there were so many reviews for. The experience was worth every penny and the food was delicious. For one price we had unlimited salad bar that had lots of grilled veggies, cheeses as well as typical salad ingredients and the waiters brought 8 types of meat to our table in rotation and you let them know if you'd like some or not. There were several cuts of steak, sausage, marinated pork, chicken, and my favorite cinnamon grilled pineapple. It was kind of an upscale, all you can eat joint with a brazillian twist. An extra plus - the sangria was fantastic!

We saw Alice in Wonderland 3D (my second time) and I'm definitely in love, this is a must own for me. We did a little shopping i.e the mall and Ulta for me and Dicks Sporting Goods and Best Buy for him. I went to walmart and purchased a few DVDs (New Moon of course was one of them). We took a morning trip to Ikea but left empty handed. I grabbed a catelog on the way out for some storage ideas, I LOVE their closet systems.
I probably won't see him again until my birthday so I'm glad we had such a fun few days.

Perfume Collection

When I reviewed Victoria's Secret The Body Mist, I mentioned I love wearing it no matter what fragrance I'm wearing that day. I made a mental note to list my current perfumes because I haven't blogged about fragrance before. Here are my tried and true favorites and I have a bottle of each in my collection. Usually if I'm curious about a new scent I get a sample from Sephora first and wear it a few days to see if I love it enough to commit to a whole bottle (I hate wasting a bottle of perfume because it is so pricey). Ralph Lauren Romance. The name says it all, romantic and floral. I've been wearing this for years and it's one I've gotten so many compliments on.
Lavanila Vanilla Grapefruit. This is an all natural perfume that may be too strong for some noses (like my mom), I love the vanilla fragrance. This is mostly a summer perfume for me.
Stella Sheer. This was a limited edition fragrance that smells similar to the orginal but lighter with more gardenia and less amber. I'm currently wearing this as my Spring fragrance.
Dolce and Gabbana The One. This fragrance is romantic with a lighter, more powdery scent than Ralph Lauren Romance. It makes a great day or night scent, mine is the small bottle so I keep this in my travel makeup bag when I go home to visit mom or my boyfriend because it is so versatile.
Coco Mademoiselle. As if this needed introduction, it's actually the only musk fragrance I've ever owned and I love it for night time or as a winter fragrance but definitely be careful how much you spritz for daytime.
Stella McCartney Stella. My favorite daytime fragrance, I think it's meant to be a fall/winter scent but I wear it year round for day. Currently I'm wearing the Stella Sheer but nothing beats the scent of the orginal.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Clarisonic Mia Promotion

Last week I received an email that Sephora was having a promotion on the Clarisonic Pink Mia where you get the brush and cleanser along with an additional replacement brush head and a white travel bag for $149. I definitely wanted to snag that extra brush head, I think it is a $25 value. I hope it helps combat the acne that has plagued my forehead recently. The promotion may still be valid so it might be worth looking into if any of you were thinking of purchasing. I was planning on buying the original Clarisonic but I heard this one is better for travel and I'm currently going back and forth between states so this seemed to be a good fit for me.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Holiday Message for Friends and Subbies

A good beginning is half the work - Irish Proverb
May you find a way to cheat evil
May your glass overflow
May good luck always find you
Love and Shamrocks!
- April and Lilly

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

National Registered Dietitians Day!

It's National Registered Dietitians Day!!!!
Today is the day I get to toot my horn loud and proud. Our office is celebrating with a registered dietitian luncheon and usually we get some small token from the company for our efforts. I also wanted to remind everyone that March is National Nutrition Month so it's a great time to go over to http://www.eatright.org/ for information regarding research based nutrition and for information on how to locate a dietitian in your area.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Birthday Wish List

Jack Rogers Navajo Thong Sandals in Platinum. These are comfortable and perfect for a southern summer, everyone owns them but you can't go wrong with a classic.
A little odd maybe but I have a wall in my house that I would like to put a ship wheel on, in fact I'm so set on it I can't picture anything else I'd rather have. They can be bought in all different sizes, I'm looking to get a 36" one with a bronze accent.
7 for all mankind Dojo in New York in Dark. I rarely buy jeans and I don't own anything in this style.
I really want a clarisonic and since I travel so much right now I think the Mia would be the best fit. This is a definite purchase if I don't get it as a gift.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Review: Urban Decay Alice in Wonderland Palette

I typically do not buy "limited edition" or kitschy type beauty products, unfortunately I met my match. I could not have turned this down if I tried and BELIEVE me I attempted to talk myself out of it. Blah, I'm such a sucker. It made the deal a little sweeter when I discovered it was getting harder to find and my Sephora only had 2 left. Behold...
I never stood a chance. The packaging! The colors! Look at that cutie travel size primer potion! I have been using this on a daily basis, Mushroom, Mad Hatter, and Vorpal are the three I'm wearing to work the most. Most of the shades are a bit shimmery for work but I actually don't own a lot of really fun eyeshadow colors so this was a good way to experiment while getting some safe shades as well. Look at that turquoise eyeliner, perfect for a pop of color this summer right?!?!
I'm too excited about this movie, it technically had it's first showing last night at midnight in my area but of course stupid work got in my way. Thanks to fandango I will have my ticket to (drumroll ) Alice in Wonderland 3D, the IMAX Experience. SO FLIPPING EXCITED!

In the Kitchen: Tortellini Soup

I've made this twice in the past few weeks because I haven't been feeling well. A pot of this soup is a week's worth of dinners for me and it's super filling. It's quick to make, inexpensive and you can use any veggies you like.
My Version:
1 large container Swansons 99% fat free, lower sodium chicken broth
1 family size package of tortellini (mine is cheese filled)
1 large family size frozen spinach
salt and pepper
**if I'm not too lazy I'll use a pinch of marjoram, 1 bay leaf, and a pinch of thyme
Thaw spinach and drain access water. Boil pasta in chicken broth according to package directions. Add spinach and warm through. *Optional but oh so tasty, turn the heat to medium low, add herbs and cook additional twenty minutes.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

New Hair and Products

Ladies this is why I don't do outfit of the day posts...
My typical attire consists of some type of blouse, Express Editor slacks and my Landau lab coat - chic. Actually I'd like to draw some attention to my new highlights and bangs (which I haven't had in many years). My hair before was down to the bra strap so this was a huge change for me. And it was well received!!!! I was given compliments from friends, co workers, family, whistling construction workers - all the usual reliable sources. Maybe I'll hang out at this length for a while.

With every new hair cut and color comes new styling goods. I purchased the Matrix Biolage Color Care Shampoo and Conditioner set for super cheap at trade secrets. I guess they had them left over from the holidays. I also purchased the Straight Sexy Hair Smooth and Protect Flat Iron Spray, this product is great to use on each individual piece before it's straightened, it's so light it doesn't weigh down the volume and the smell is fantastic. So far I like all my new hair goodies!

Girl Scout Cookies

Ah the holidays - Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, Valentines Day, and. . .
Girl Scout Cookie Sales!
I love cookie selling season, cute little girls begging to unload their cookies for cash; I'm also love that familiar taste for an annual treat. Pre - sales start the second week of February and cookies are sold through the beginning of April. Here are some of my goodies:

Their old fashioned name are Samoas, I still call them that.

Peanut butter sandwich cookies.
Thin Mints - love these when they're cold.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Blog Update

I felt old today. I realized this morning that my birthday is only 1 month away and I'll be approaching the other side of my twenties (the side thats too close to thirty). My friends are married and having babies and I'm not finished with grad school - although I do have a pretty kick ass job that I actually like. The boy and I are doing well, we're getting to see each other 3 weekends this month. Lilly has been sick lately. The past week she's been vomitting and we've had to make three trips to the vet. Apparently she had a GI obstruction and after a week of meds she's doing better. And then......a bump appears on her head. I took her back to the vet and was informed my can has a subcutaneous cyst otherwise known as acne?!?! Who knew that cats could get acne? To change the subject I wanted to recommend a product that I'm loving lately. I'd like to start out by saying I'm not a Bath and Body Works kind of girl, I don't do the whole body spray / body splash kind of thing but I found a product that I LOVE. The Body Mist by Victoria's secret is fantastic! It's perfume-y without being perfume and it's not too citrus-y or floral. I'm keeping mine in my purse for mid-day scent touchups and it layers well over my different perfumes. I love the simple, plastic packaging so I don't have to worry about it breaking or spilling in my bag. The website calls this a woody musky floral (hmm no wonder it layers so well) Top notes crushed leaves, freesia, mandarin Middle notes: water hyacinth, cucumber, stephanotis Low notes: white musk, sandalwood