Tuesday, December 27, 2011

{fashion} OOTD

I hope that y'all had a wonderful Christmas with your families! I certainly did. 
Here is a little OOTD post. 

Top: Forever 21 - $19.80
Jeans: Midnight Skinnies from Forever 21 - $10.50
Shoes: Payless - on sale in the store for $19.99
Bag: Old Navy - old
Watch: Anne Klein Tortoise Shell Watch - a Christmas gift
Earrings: Brighton - a gift

Technically I wore this last night to a bar in Channelside called Pour House. My friend's dad owns it. It is a really cool little bar! They let well behaved dogs come in and hang out with their owners. 

I saw this cutie pie puppy originally sitting with his little tail hanging off the back of the seat. He was calm as can be, sitting and watching some football with his owner. Such a sweetie.

I leave for NYC tomorrow! So excited. :)

Have a great rest of your day!

xo, Jen

Saturday, December 24, 2011

{life} merry christmas

Here is a festive photo of boyfriend and me last December.

I hope that you have a wonderful Christmas filled with family, friends, and lots of good food!

xo, Jen

Thursday, December 15, 2011

{diy} easy christmas wreath

A little windblown.

Hobby Lobby has the best sales.

I bought both the grapevine wreath and pre-made holiday bow for 50% off normal prices.
The grapevine wreath was $4.00 and the bow was $6.00 for a total price of $10.00!

I went to Hobby Lobby to find a pre-made wreath for our door but found that the prices were absolutely ridiculous, even 50% off. I can definitely spend my $35.00 elsewhere, thank you very much.

Just heat up a hot glue gun, glue the bow to the wreath, and violaaa, instant {cheap} Christmas wreath!

Do you make wreaths for the different holidays?

Happy Wednesday!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

{life} christmas wishlist

As I get older, I am beginning to think of less and less items that I want/need under the tree Christmas morning. I never really like asking my parents for *things* because they truly support me completely.

This year, I did ask for one (big) present for Christmas...  a plane ticket to NYC to spend New Year's with my boyfriend. It is going to be FABULOUS! I will finally get my first paycheck right before I leave for the city. Thank goodness too... NYE in the city is so not cheap. eeek.

I decided to come up with a little wishlist with a few dream items I have been eyeing for a while, as well as practical items I use every day!

You can check out my Polyvore here!

1. Bare Escentuals Foundation - I love this stuff. My face tends to break out pretty easily and this is the best foundation I have found to keep it from doing so. Application is easy and quick and it really looks like you aren't wearing any makeup at all. Definitely always need a supply of this stuff!
2. Michael Kors Tortoise Shell Watch - Dream item NUMBER 1! I have loved this watch from a distance but it is quite pricey. A pretty good replacement (and money saver) for the Michael Kors watch is a Geneva watch. Quality is nowhere near the same but it keeps a college fashionista's wallet a lot happier!
3. Loafer Heels - Dream item NUMBER 2! I have been loving the look of flat loafers and heeled loafers this season. I don't know how often I would wear these SM Anne Pumps but they sure are cute!
4. Statement Necklaces - While I do love this Liz Claiborne necklace, I am more going for the whole trend of statement necklaces while adding this one to my list. I need to work on my jewelry and accessory skills. I love how a simple white tee can be spruced up so much with dark denim, wedges, and a statement necklace.
5. Flawless Definition Bare Escentuals Mascara - I looove the Flawless Definition mascara I use by Bare Escentuals. The wand is perfect for long, full eyelashes. Mine is running a little low currently.... good stocking stuffer?! :)
6. OPI Nail Polish - Just like with the statement necklace, this is more of a broad, anything goes wish list item. I love nail polish and OPI always seems to have the best color options! I'm especially loving their holiday collection though.

What is on your wishlist this year?
Link up your blog post and let us know!

xo, Jen

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

{recipe} spinach bites - also known as CRACK.

These look rather unassuming, I know.  Don't let their weirdly shaped selves fool you though. 
These spinach bites are the BOMB.COM.
They will change the lives of spinach haters. And people who hate stuffing.
Once, I randomly discovered this completely unassuming  appetizer online while searching for food ideas for a birthday celebration for my roommate. We only made one batch for that party. They were gone in 10 minutes. (no joke). The people devouring them couldn't explain why they were so addicting.

They just are.

Do yourself a favor. Make these.... like now. 
Dip them in marinara sauce for an easy appetizer.
Throw them over pasta in place of meatballs.
Eat them straight out of the oven that night.
...and straight out of the fridge from tupperware the next day.
Should I have admitted that?
Oh, and totally convince your guests that these are totally healthy. Don't mention the six eggs or the box of stuffing mix or the Parmesan cheese or the stick of butter. Spinach. That's all they need to know. ;)

Spinach Bites
Recipe credit to The Curvy Carrot

I'm posting the ingredient amounts to make one batch, about 18-24 spinach bites. However, I highly recommend that you double the recipe! And yes, it is necessary to really use 2 sticks of butter if you do so.

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 small onion, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic (about 1 clove)
  • 2 10-oz packages frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
  • 1 8 oz bag of herbed seasoned stuffing mix.
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper, to taste.
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large saute pan over medium heat, melt the butter.
  3. Add onion and cook until the onions are translucent and soft, about 5 minutes or so. 
  4. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Remove the pan from the heat and let cool.
  5. In the meantime, remove excess water from thawed spinach by pressing it between paper towels. This will take a little bit of time. You can get a tonnnn of water out of frozen spinach. You do not need to cook the spinach!
  6. In a large bowl, combine the stuffing mix, spinach, eggs, Parmesan, salt and pepper, and onion/garlic/butter mixture. Combine well.
  7. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  8. One at a time, using your hands, roll the mixture into individual 1-inch balls. Place each one on the parchment-lined baking sheet.
  9. Bake the balls for about 15-20 minutes, or until very slightly browned. (You can prepare the spinach bites a few hours before the party and stick them in the oven 20 minutes before guests are set to arrive. Your kitchen will smell wonderful and they will be able to enjoy them straight out of the oven!)
  10. Serve with warmed through marinara sauce and enjoy!

Are you sold yet?

Monday, December 12, 2011

{recipe} peppermint chocolate chip cookies

Look at how cute those cookies look underneath our baby Christmas tree. :) 

I love holiday baking. Even though I am (always) an incredibly messy baker, there is just something so comforting about making homemade cookies.  Especially when baking falls on a cold, cloudy day with candles burning and the Christmas music channel on TV blaring. 

I first saw the recipe for these cookies on Pinterest. (duh) My cookies look nothing like the cookies on the original blog. She baked hers in muffin top pans. Totally genius. However, I do not own muffin top pans, nor do I have room in my tiny apartment to store them. Therefore I was forced to bake them normal style - on some parchment paper in a cookie pan. My candy canes and junior mints melted and formed little sticky ice skating rinks under the cookies. After the first batch I sent some cookies in the oven without rolling them in the candy canes to prevent the sticky meltage. I tried to spruce them up by pressing some crushed candy cane on top of the cookies as soon as they came out of the oven. They weren't as (unconventionally) pretty. I decided to just go with it and let the sticky cookies do their thing.

Moral of the story - own a muffin top pan so you can make perfectly shaped peppermint chocolate chip cookies. But if you don't mind serving some irregularly shaped cookies to your guests, don't be surprised when they disappear in like... twenty minutes.

These cookies were a hit! Sticky mess and all. :)

Peppermint Chocolate Chip Cookies
Recipe credit to Two Peas & Their Pod.

  • 3 3/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (two sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups chocolate chips
  • 2 boxes (3.5 ounce) Junior Mints. (Original recipe calls for peppermint crunch Junior Mints but I couldn't find them at the store I bought the rest of my ingredients at so I just used normal Junior Mints.)
  • 6 large candy canes, crushed

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt. Set aside. In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugars together until smooth. (It will be crumbly.) Beat in eggs and vanilla until well combined. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Stir in the chocolate chips.
  3. Tuck 1 Junior Mint into about 1 tablespoon of cookie dough. Form into a ball and roll into crushed candy cane pieces. Place cookies on baking sheet.
  4. Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until edges just start to turn golden brown. Cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.

Cookies on the left were rolled in candy canes. Cookies on the right were not.
I like the ones on the left better!

Light a Yankee "Cookies for Santa" candle, pour some milk into a penguin mug, and enjoy!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

{life} snapshots from our christmas party

Homemade wreath - Check!

Tacky Christmas sweater - Check!

Sneaky Santa present wrapped - Check!

Christmas cookie baking - Check!

Holiday pasta - Check!

Christmas candle, penguin mug, presents wrapped - Check! 

Christmas tree and Christmas cookies - Check!

Simmy creepin


My forever friends. 

Seesters at our party! 

Getting ready for Sneaky Santa! I won the redneck wine glass. :)

"Y'all are way too cute to be wearing such ugly outfits. What is the occasion?"

About to queue up posts with the recipes from our party. :)

Have a great rest of your weekend!

Monday, December 5, 2011

{life} lately

I went to the Florida vs. Florida State game.

I tailgated  at my cousin's old fraternity house in Gainesville.

 I found my big in the stands and sat with her the entire game! I hadn't seen her since May!

I watched almost all of the UF fans leave the stadium during half-time.

I watched my team pull off a win against our rival for the second year in a row.

I heard the Nole warchant and fight song over the UF band in the swamp.

 I finally met Sara and toured the UF Phi Mu house for the first time!

I went hiking with my best girl friends in Phi Mu.

We hiked 4.5 miles with elevations up to 300 feet.

It was perfect.

I also haven't blogged in almost an entire month. :(
I haven't been cooking much. School and work have been a little crazy lately. Trying to get back into the swing of things. My roommates and I are throwing a holiday party on Saturday. I have the menu we are providing picked out already. So excited! Blog post coming soon. :)

I need to catch up on everyone's blogs. Ah.

Love you all.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

{recipe} holiday treats - thanksgiving edition

Hi lovely people! 

I don't know about you but I am a total season hopper. Fall is (almost) in full swing in Tallahassee now and all I can think about is the holiday party my roommates and I are going to throw before finals! I've found so many cute ideas for desserts and appetizers to include in our holiday round up.

Let's not forget about Thanksgiving though.


Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays... but I still tend to neglect sometimes.
Here are a few dessert ideas besides your typical (but delicious) pumpkin pie.

Pilgrim Hat Treats

Turkey  Nutterbutter Treats

Turkey Cupcakes

Chocolate Pumpkin Cupcakes with a Salted Caramel Frosting

Pumpkin Trifle

Salted Caramel Cheesecake Pie

And remember...


Do you have a favorite dessert that you make every Thanksgiving?
I know that I will be making my pumpkin cheesecake squares to contribute to our dessert table!

Oh, and I am so excited to get to work today. I work with kindergartners in the after school care program at an elementary school in Tallahassee. Today we are throwing a party called "My Favorite Feast" for Thanksgiving. All of the kids are bringing in their favorite food and we are having a party! Parents are allowed to come join the festivities and we are going to have games and arts and crafts set up. I looove my job!

Have a great weekend everyone!

Monday, November 14, 2011

{travel} new york city trip!

Um... I feel like I have just been updating y'all every Monday on my weekends. Maybe I will get back to regular blogging soon?!?

I spent the three day weekend in Manhattan with my wonderful boyfriend. We went to dinner Friday night to celebrate his new job offer in Chicago. If you live in the city or are visiting soon you should check out a restaurant called 84 on Seventh. The food was spectacular. The rest of the time we just did normal couple things like walk around his neighborhood, hang out in Central Park, cook together, watch football, and just enjoy each others company. It was splendid. :)

Here are some pictures from the weekend:

Why can't it always be this beautiful outside?

@ the FSU bar with Phi Mu alums for the UM v. FSU game!

I couldn't have asked for a better weekend. I hope y'all enjoyed yours!

xx, Jen