Monday, November 28

What I Wore: Thanksgiving Part Two

On Saturday we had Thanksgiving Part Two with JD's family in Manhattan. 
There was so much delicious food and lots of laughing. 

Since there was going to be a ton of eating,
I decided to go with a more comfortable outfit,
which ended up being much more casual than I would usually do for a holiday dinner.
But we were with family, and I don't think they minded blue legs too much.

Before dinner, JD and I took a walk down to Hudson River Park to snap some photos.



I have worn this jacket more times that I care to admit.
It's kind of an easy go to. I've worn it with a fitted skirt, black pants, colorful scarves, etc.
I really like the military inspired look of it, very WWII.

Jacket: Rag & Bone (last Fall/Winter)
T-shirt: Old Navy 
Denim: American Eagle
Boots: Frye

And now a shot of our lovely dinner.
JD's mom prepared everything, she is an amazing chef!
Salad was frisee with figs, sliced pear and goat cheese, mmm!
Followed by delicious Cornish Hens with an apricot glaze, 
grain stuffing, cranberries, peas, etc.
Perfection.



Saturday, November 26

What I Wore: An Engagement Party

One of the last things that I purchased before I started this little no shopping project was
 a black silk chiffon dress from Club Monaco with a wintery floral print.
A few weeks ago, I wore it to my friends', Maria and Joe's, engagement party 
with suede Gucci pumps that have a bamboo detail on the heel.


It's been about a month now and let me tell you, it's not easy.
I'm not one of those girls that goes shopping every day or week but I do love clothes, 
shoes, scarves, handbags, hats, sunglasses...
I think you get the point.
But knowing that you can't do something can drive you crazy. 
All of a sudden, all I want is new clothes.
I am convinced that I have nothing to wear,
which is very far from true. 
I wonder how I'll feel come April when this is over.

Thursday, November 24

Thankful

I have so much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving.
My darling JD,
my wonderful family and friends,
to have a job, home and my health,
and my puppy, Mischa.

Mischa is thankful that my sister's puppy, Paisley, shared part of her rawhide bone.



Yes, those potatoes are purple!
Scout was hoping to try one of my pumpkin cupcakes.
 Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 21

Taco Salad

Back in our junior year of college, my friend Melissa and I came up with the idea for taco salad. 
It is basically just a mountain of taco ingredients.
 Piled on top of a bed of lettuce and crushed tortilla chips is
taco meat, cheese, salsa, sour cream, guacamole...
Sometimes we got crazy and added diced tomatoes, onions, and two kinds of cheeses.
We love cheese.
And we usually top taco salad with sharp cheddar or pepper jack.
Taco salad night became a thing of ours and we continued it weekly 
(sometimes often more than once a week)
right through to the end of our senior year.
In my post grad life, taco salad night occurs much less frequently,
and with much less wine or company,
but I still love it!


And I still pile an obnoxious amount of it on my plate.
What can I say?

Old habits die hard,
harder than November rain.
-Mick Jagger

Friday, November 18

More Fall Foliage

I thought since I took so many photos last weekend that I would share a few more from the park.
It really was such a perfect weekend for taking pictures.
Most of the leaves have fallen now.









On another note, doesn't JD photograph beautifully?

Tuesday, November 15

Challenge Accepted

I like to challenge myself,
whether it be physically or mentally.
I think it's healthy. 

Which is why I have decided to challenge myself to refrain from shopping for six months.
That means no new clothes, shoes, or handbags.
I am still undecided on other accessories such as hats, scarves, and gloves. It is going to get very cold here soon and I am certain that I don't have any winter hats. 
I would really like a nice cloche.

What sparked this challenge, you ask?
Well, my darling boyfriend, JD, loves to rock climb and boulder. 
 I love to take photographs, especially of JD. 
He's just so handsome (:


So a few weeks ago, JD planned a day trip upstate to climb. It was chilly out and I was having trouble putting together an appropriate outfit. I was convinced that I had absolutely nothing to wear as the shirt that I had in mind was in the wash. Then, at the bottom of one of my drawers I found a black Free People henley with silver and brass colored studs lining the placket. How could I have forgotten about this shirt? I wore this thing all the time my senior year of college! 

This got me thinking, what else have I completely forgotten about?
I plan on finding out by remixing and reinventing my already existing wardrobe.

I started this challenge a little over two weeks ago.  
So far, so good.

Outfit posts to come so stay tuned!

Sunday, November 13

Central Park

This weekend my boyfriend, JD and I decided to go for a stroll around Central Park. We hadn't been to the park in a while and we both wanted to experiment with my new camera and the fall colors. We hoped that we would get lucky, that the leaves would manage to hang onto their trees long enough for us to snap some marvelous photos. Thankfully, they did. The weather was perfect, a lovely fall day, and the trees covered in brilliant gold, orange, and red leaves. 

I love lamp posts. They have this timelessness that draws me in. I must have taken about a hundred shots of various lamp posts throughout the park.






When we stopped to capture this one, JD caused a bit of a frenzy. We were there for a few minutes, framing the shot and experimenting with different settings... There is still so much to learn about this camera! Several passersby stopped to see what we were up to and decided to get their own shot of the gorgeous view as well, which I of course had to capture on my iPhone. Too funny!

We had such a lovely time, and snapped so many photos. Too many photos, well over four hundred... I don't think we took half as many on our trip to London this past March! 

I hope you enjoyed the weekend too!

Thursday, November 10

Pumpkin Cupcakes

One thing that I like to do in my spare time is experiment in the kitchen. 
Now, I can't say that all of those experiments end well...
But most of them do.

As it is "fall", and I put that in quotes as it has been unseasonably warm all week here in New York, I have been obsessed with everything pumpkin. So, when I came across this recipe for Pumpkin Cupcakes with a Chai Cream Cheese Icing I just had to give it a try. I never know how much to fill the cupcake pans. The first batch came out looking more like large muffins than cupcakes. I think I got the hang of it the second time around.




What you'll need:
For cupcakes

2 cups all-purpose flour 
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 cup canola or safflower oil
3 eggs
1 15 ounce can pureed pumpkin
For icing
  • 1/4 cup sugar
    2 chai tea bags
    3 cardamom pods
    1 cinnamon stick
    8 ounces cream cheese (room temperature)
    1/2 cup butter or 1 stick (room temperature)
    3/4 cups powdered sugar
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1 teaspoon honey

What to do:
Start by preheating the oven to 350°F. 
Grease the cupcake pans and place cupcake liners in each.

Combine the dry ingredients 
(flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger)
 in a medium sized bowl. In another bowl, beat together the sugar and oil 
until the sugar is saturated by the oil. (It helps to use an electric mixer)
Beat in the eggs, one at a time, then stir in the pumpkin. 
Add the flour mixture, and fold with a rubber spatula until just combined. 

Pour the batter into the cupcake pans and bake the cupcakes for 15-20 minutes. 

To make the Frosting: 
(I usually make this first as it takes a while for it to cool down.)

Combine the sugar, 5 tablespoons water, the chai tea bags, 
cardamom pods, and cinnamon stick in a small saucepan. 
Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring to make sure the sugar dissolves, 
then simmer, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. 
Turn off the heat and let the syrup steep another 20 minutes. 
Remove the cardamom pods and cinnamon stick, 
and squeeze out all the flavor from the tea bags.
 Let the syrup come to room temperature before proceeding.

In a bowl combine the butter, cream cheese, powdered sugar, 
vanilla extract, honey, and chai syrup and mix until it is very smooth. 
(Once again, you may want to use an electric mixer.)

Before frosting the cupcakes make sure that the icing 
is room temperature, other wise it is difficult to spread.

Mmm delicious!