Friday Faves

photo-75 {fall colors}

November might be my favorite month of the year.  Or at least second favorite, after October. I don’t love the part where it’s dark by five pm, but November finally brings boot weather, sweater weather, flannel shirt weather, fire in the fireplace weather, Mrs. O’Leary’s BBQ nail polish weather…..I could go on and on. Also it’s my birthday month. And while my November downtime is normally reserved for trying out new Thanksgiving recipes, I have an absurdly packed social calendar this weekend so my pumpkin cheesecake will have to wait. Which is probably for the best.

Have a wonderful weekend! Some fun links and pics:

  • Making these for my next cocktail party!
  • I’ll always love brunch, but this article made me laugh.
  • Obsessed with these pumps (thanks, Mindy!)
  • My sister sent this to me last weekend and it renewed my love for all things Taylor Swift.
  • Can we start a letter-writing campaign to bring back the GBL?!? (This seriously makes me so sad!)

photo 2 {loving my new “catchall” (earrings here, ring here)}

photo-74 {this book is hilarious!}

photo-76{can’t beat this rainy day lunch}

photo.PNG {halloween selfie with my little cuddle bear}

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Friday Faves

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{kate spade “one in a million” necklaces}

Happy Friday, friends! What are you up to this weekend? I’m still waiting for my baby nephew, if you can believe it.  At first I thought he was just fashionably late like his favorite auntie, but now I’m afraid he’s bordering on rude.  I had some fun plans this weekend that I’m going to have to miss, but of course it will be well worth it. I’m so excited to finally meet this little person, and to find out his name (my sister and her husband have it narrowed down to two and are going to flip a coin at the hospital – true story).  I have so many personalized and monogrammed items in my (virtual) shopping carts all over the interwebs, I can’t wait to finally complete my purchases with an actual name! Hint: it’s going to start with one of the letters above.

PSA: the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale ends on Sunday. So if you haven’t stocked up already, add that to your to do list for the weekend. My top five recommendations (aside from the Kate Spade necklaces) would be:

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{the beach this past weekend – this is literally a “#nofilter” photo}

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{new favorite face wash}

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{whale wins patio + summer white}

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{I put together this entire whale/beach/nautical themed package for Baby P, and intended for it to be a shower gift until I realized it needed to be “wrapped” in a Land’s End tote with his name on it – and of course we’re still waiting on a name.  And then I got impatient and gave it to my sister without the tote (which of course is in my cart, in two versions). But, isn’t it all just so cute? I’m pretty proud of the fact that I got every single one of these items on sale. The perks of having 20+ weeks to plan. Whale rattle here, beach towel here, all else long gone. Are you sick of all these baby clothes pics yet? At least we know there’ll be an actual baby by next week for sure.}

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Friday Faves

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{look what the april showers brought!}

Hello, Friday! I’m off to Austin for a very dear friend’s bachelorette party this weekend, and could not be more excited for some girl time, sunshine, and BBQ.  OK maybe not that last part (Austin is wasted on this picky vegetarian!), but I’m looking forward to exploring the city, particularly the music scene.  My weather app is predicting 91-degree temperatures, so I’m not sure how much we’ll stray from the pool, but once we do…..look out, 6th Street! And of course, the Blazers are playing in Portland tonight, but I’ll be cheering them on from Texas – I’m going to try not to jinx them like I did last week!

Some fun links for your Friday morning – including one for Cinco de Mayo and one for the Derby! Wishing everyone a wonderful weekend.

  • One of my favorite posts from my friend Yoona’s blog (please note that “Cuz” and I have the same exfoliator).
  • Cinco de Mayo cupcakes – and quite a few helpful cupcake tips.
  • How amazing is Emma Stone in this lip sync battle?
  • A mint julep recipe in honor of the Kentucky Derby.
  • Getting to know George Clooney’s fiancé.

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{old fashioned(s) with an old friend at clyde common in portland}

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{finally restocked my favorite exfoliator}

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{fun new earrings}

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{this week’s baby p purchase – for his beach wardrobe – I’ve been waiting for it to go on sale and snatched it up the minute it was marked down}

Friday Faves

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Tulips at the market

Happy Friday, friends! All of the tulips, daffodils, and crocuses popping up in the markets and yards make me feel like spring is finally here! Just last week I was scraping ice off my car, yet next week’s forecast is in the 70s.  Such a crazy time of year!  Some fun inspiration in honor of the season of renewal:

And then, some not-necessarily-springy highlights from my (last few) week(s). Have a wonderful weekend!

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Delicious meal at Grassa in Portland (don’t worry, this was just the first course).

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Bundt cakes (lemon poppyseed and rum) for my dear friends’ wedding last weekend – in lieu of having a traditional wedding cake, the bride asked about twenty of her girlfriends to make their favorite bundt cakes. Tragically,  my cakes and I ended up missing the wedding due to a terribly-timed bout with the norovirus, but all reports said the bundt cake table was a hit!

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Champagne cocktails at Tallulah’s in Capitol Hill – so hip.

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My new baby nephew’s first stationary from my new Etsy fave.  I’m going to try really hard not to overwhelm this blog with pics of all the baby things I can’t seem to stop buying, but I thought these were extra cute! And what unborn baby doesn’t need personalized thank you notes?

Friday Faves

TGIFF – thank goodness it’s finally Friday! I hope everyone’s April is off to a lovely start. This week started out gorgeous and sunny in Seattle, but the last few days have been pretty grey and blah. In spite of that, I did my best to come up with a few highlights – and I can’t complain too much about the weather, because I’m heading to Hawaii in two weeks! The forecast for Kailua is low 80s and sunny, which makes the current Seattle rain just a teensy bit more bearable. As will the spray tan I’m going to get at lunch today!

I had a really sad day on Monday, for reasons I won’t go into. After work I dragged myself to a spin class, even though I would have much preferred happy hour. During the instructor’s inspirational rant towards the end of class, she yelled out “take whatever it is that ruined your day today and work it out this way, rather than at the bar.” I was feeling so proud of myself for doing just that…until after class when I promptly ordered a drink at dinner. This “cucumber mint agave” cocktail was so delicious though, I didn’t even feel guilty. It’s my new drink for summer: vodka muddled with cucumber and mint and then mixed with lime juice and a little agave nectar. Paired with a good workout and great friends, it was the perfect cure for a bad day.

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My friend Katie and I went on an online shopping spree last summer, when a slow work day happened to coincide with the Kate Spade sale – a dangerous combination. When this bag first arrived in the mail, I was afraid it was a little too bright and didn’t really use it at all. However, I recently rediscovered it in the back of my closet and for some reason this year I feel like the color is perfect – and I’ve gotten so many compliments on it that I know it’s not just me. If you’re in the market for a fun spring handbag, here are a few that I love:

  • Tory Burch Robinson Spectator Double Zip Tote – I love anything from the Robinson line, but I especially love this in the white, and with the laser-cut detailing (here)
  • Kate Spade Grove Court Maise in Maraschino – love the pink and orange combo, and the polka dot lining (here)
  • Rebecca Minkoff “M.A.B” Leather Tote in Sea Green – perfect for a fun summer work bag (here)

I’ve turned 29 my past few birthdays, so all of the sudden I find myself buying more skincare products than I used to. I know this is an issue for most of my friends as well, so whenever I find an amazing new product I have to share. I’m still waiting for my friend Yoona to do another skincare post, but in the meantime, this is my new moisturizer obsession. It’s light and non-greasy, which are my two main criteria for a moisturizer, but it’s also super hydrating, anti-aging, smoothing, calming, etc. Basically a lot of things that my skin needs. And it smells good. If anyone else has a product they want to share, I would love to hear about it in the comments!

One of my favorite parts about having my blog is that people will discuss things with me that they wouldn’t necessarily have discussed before. A friend at work the other day gave me a list of his favorite cookbooks, so of course I immediately went back to my desk and ordered them all. He gave me three suggestions – one is backordered, but the other two arrived this week (in a HEAVY box, they’re both HUGE)and I’m having so much fun starting to go through them. If anyone has any favorite recipes from Marcella Hazan’s Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking or Dorie Greenspan’s Around My French Table , I would love to hear them! I have a feeling they’re both going to force me to up my game!

My grandma is famous for a lot of her recipes, but one of the top five family favorites is her lemon poppyseed cake (which – shhhh!!! – is just a slightly doctored up cake mix). I made it on my own for the first time this past weekend, and it was a big hit at my cousin’s baby shower. Even Grandma gave it the thumbs up, although she was quick to add that hers is “lighter.” Also you’ll notice the crack at the bottom of mine from when I flipped it – heartbreaking.

Grandma’s Lemon Poppyseed Cake:

2 boxes lemon cake mix (“lemon supreme” if you can find it, I used plain lemon because I couldn’t)
2 small boxes instant lemon pudding (if you can find it, I used vanilla because I couldn’t find lemon)
Lemon juice (fresh squeezed, or from concentrate, as you’ll need 1-2 cups)
Eggs
Oil
1 large jar poppyseeds
1 cup powdered sugar (approx.), for glaze
4 teaspoons fresh squeezed lemon juice (or juice of one lemon, approx.), for glaze

Prepare cake mix according to package directions, only substitute lemon juice for the water. You can do just one cake mix (and one box of pudding, and one small or half one large jar poppyseeds), but for a tall cake you should use two and double the recipe.

Spray a bundt cake pan with “pam for baking” (or butter and flour the pan) and cook according to package directions (if you use two boxes of cake mix it will take anywhere from 15-30 minutes longer to bake).

To make the glaze, whisk the powdered sugar and 4 teaspoons lemon juice together until smooth (mine turned out a little too thin, which is why you can barely tell it’s even on there – too much lemon juice!).

Allow cake to cool for 20-30 minutes, then invert pan onto platter and drizzle the glaze over the top of the cake. Serve with fresh berries.

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I hope everyone has fun weekend plans, sunshine or not! I’ll be rooting for Wichita State tomorrow (I can’t believe I just said that!). xoxo