Monday, December 29, 2014

♪ Carolina in the Morning ♪

We just returned from a 5 day stay in the mountains of North Carolina. We were hoping for lots of snow, but the weather didn't cooperate haha...We did manage to find some patches of snow when we drove north for a ways. It was little A's first time seeing snow and she loved it! She wanted to bring a snowball with her in the car. I absolutely love walking through the woods here and driving through the foggy mountain roads.

Friday, December 19, 2014

My Favorite Toddler Apps

Sharing my list of go-to apps for little ones today... These are a fun addition to our home preschool regimen and they help us survive long road trips or flights :)

1. First Words Deluxe  This is an excellent app for learning to recognize words and beginning to spell. The deluxe version costs $4.99 and includes 5 categories of words: animals, at home, colors, shapes, and vehicles.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Shop Update

Sharing today's new arrivals in the shop!

My Winter Reading List

There's nothing better than curling up with a cup of tea and a good book when it's cold outside :) Sharing my list of books to be read:



What are you reading/planning to read? 

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Nutrient Dense Greek Farro Salad


This colorful vegetarian salad makes an excellent lunch or even dinner. I'm adding it to my regular rotation! 

Nutrient Dense Greek Farro Salad

1 1/2 cups dry farro
1 15 oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/2 red onion, diced
1 cucumber, (peeled or unpeeled, your choice), chopped
1 red bell pepper
1 cup chopped carrots (I used baby rainbow carrots)
3 tomatoes, chopped
1 cup kalamata olives, pitted
1/4 cup capers
1 8 ounce block of feta, crumbled
1/3 cup olive oil
3 tbsp vinegar of your choice (I used coconut vinegar but red wine vinegar would work well)

Boil farro according to package directions. Meanwhile, chop all veggies and combine them with the chickpeas, olives and capers in a large bowl (I used a 5 qt. pyrex). In a small mixing bowl, combine the oil and vinegar. When farro is done and slightly cooled, add it to the veggies. Crumble feta on top, pour the dressing over and toss well. Enjoy! 

Friday, December 12, 2014

My Favorite Winter Nail Polish Colors


1. UO Classics Collection in la ciel $5. A pretty, dark teal. I'm amazed at how many colors this pairs well with. 
2. essie in wicked $8.50. A deep bold red. I love that it is DPB, toluene and formaldehyde free.
3. UO Classics in storm $5. A moody dark grey reminiscent of winter clouds.
4. essie in penny talk  $8.50. A shimmery metallic rose gold. I am obsessed with all things rose gold right now, so this is perfect :)


And here is what they look like on...not the best paint job in the world, but hopefully you get an idea:

I used two coats for each of these. The UO colors probably could've gotten away with one coat though. I'm on my third day of wearing them now (and I've been doing dishes and making some jewelry) with no chips except for the rose gold...I've found metallics don't last as long, but are still nice for a special occasion or if you paint your nails every couple of days. 

What are your favorite colors for the chilly months?

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Shop My Closet

Yesterday I started a major purge of my wardrobe, getting rid of all the things that no longer fit or that I never found a way to work into my outfits. There are pieces from Modcloth, Free People and Urban Outfitters, which I have started listing on eBay. Most are size small. I also have a gently used quilt set up for grabs. If you'd like to take a look here is the link to the board I created on Pinterest which links to the ebay listings: Shop My Closet

I'll be adding new things gradually over the next few weeks too, so be sure to check back regularly. 


Friday, December 5, 2014

Sweet Home Alabama

Last week we took our yearly trip to my hometown, Montgomery, AL. Unfortunately a lot of our plans had to be cancelled due to sickness; little A had a nasty cold and there was a stomach bug that was passed through the family...but we still got to visit with some dear friends and family, so it wasn't all bad :) I miss the cooler weather up there so much! I forgot to take my Nikon camera so there are just a few pictures from my phone, including a little outfit shoot:










{outfit details}
sweater: urban outfitters
slip dress and sunglasses: free people
leggings: ebay

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Free Printable Shopping Lists

Today I'm sharing these cute retro fruit printable shopping lists :)
I designed them using artwork from The Ink Nest.

I will be posting free recipe card printables soon also, so stay tuned...

Sunday, November 16, 2014

20 Random Facts About Me

1. My absolute favorite time of day is the "golden hour", the first and last hours of daylight. Soo dreamy for photographs and just nice to look at period.
2. So far I've been to 24 states and 8 countries, but I'm not anywhere near done, I want to travel as much as possible.
3. I love to cook and if I could go back in time, I would have gone to culinary school instead of learning about computers and such.
4. I have OCD and also Misophonia, which is where everyday sounds trigger a strong emotional reaction...for me it is eating noises that cause me to feel rage. I only recently found out this was an actual disorder, thought for the longest time I was the only one and it was because I was crazy, haha! I have to have music or some kind of distraction in the background during meals.
5. Ranunculus flowers and peonies are my favorite flowers.
6. I was home-schooled for grades 8-12.
7. My favorite word is wanderlust. If you follow me online at all, you probably figured that out already ;)
8. I am an insomniac and am on two different meds to sleep. I tried natural remedies but absolutely nothing worked :( I have always been pretty wired at night and was always the last one to fall asleep at sleepovers as a kid.
9. I could drink iced chai all day long every day and never tire of it.
10. I love music from the 1960s and 70s and always have at least one oldies station programmed on my car radio.
11. I dislike pretty much all sports, unless you count hiking which I love. But seriously, I am bored to tears by any ball game on TV...fortunately for me, my husband isn't really into any sports either :)
12. My favorite types of cuisine are Indian and Middle Eastern. My favorite desserts are baklava and cheesecake.
13. I still have the key to my first apartment from 12 years ago. The key is tie-dyed. The apartment was a studio in an old Victorian house built in 1903. It had gorgeous high ceilings, a fireplace and wood floors. There was a Japanese magnolia tree outside my window.
14. I used to be in awe of big cities when I was younger. While I still find them fascinating and fun for a little while, I now would rather be out in nature, preferably in the mountains.
15.  I have recurring nightmares about tornadoes and tidal waves.
16. I had never broken a bone until last month when I fractured a metatarsal.
17. I admire the minimalist lifestyle and am trying to work my way towards it.
18. My husband and I eloped and we have been married for almost 9 years now.
19. I named my daughter Aurora after the northern lights and because it means "dawn" in drives me crazy when people think it is because of the Disney princess, haha!

20. Autumn is my favorite season. 


Saturday, November 8, 2014

Raw Vegan Chai Cheesecake with Pecan Ginger Crust

This was so yummy and perfect for autumn!

6 dates soaked in warm water for 10 minutes
1/4 cup candied ginger cubes
1 1/2 cups raw pecans
2+ tbsp coconut oil

3 cups cashews soaked for at least 6 hours
1/3 cup coconut oil
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/3 cup hot water
2 chai tea bags
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp cardamom
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground cloves

Grease the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan with coconut oil. In a food processor, blend all crust ingredients, adding more oil if necessary. Scrape down the sides as needed. Mixture should be crumbly and sticky. Press this mixture into the bottom of the springform pan. Bring the 1/3 cup water to near boiling and steep teabags for at least 10 minutes. Meanwhile, blend the cashews, coconut oil, and maple syrup in the food processor until smooth.* Gradually pour in tea and sprinkle in spices and continue to blend until completely creamy. Spread filling layer on top of crust. Chill in freezer for 2 hours to set. Then store in the refrigerator for up to 7 days.

*If your food processor is not big enough, you may need to blend in two batches.




Friday, November 7, 2014

Product Review: The Orange Owl's Body Butter and Lip Balm

I was in search of a chemical-free body butter when I stumbled upon The Orange Owl. I ordered the Zingy Luxury Body Butter and couldn't resist adding in the Cinnamon & Spice Lip Balm.

The Body Butter-

So much to love about this. First of all, it smells AMAZING. It reminds me of chai, which is pretty much my favorite thing ever. The consistency is whipped and airy, but it goes on rich and smooth. It feels slightly oily at first, but then absorbs to leave your skin super soft. The ingredient list is pretty impressive: mango butter, organic almond oil, organic olive oil, arrowroot powder, grapefruit seed extract, and essential oils of cinnamon, ginger, pepper and cloves. That's it. No nasty petroleum products here. Price-wise, I found it to be a good value, it's $10.99, I've had it now for about 2 months and there is about 1/4 of the container left. I highly recommend it and will be back for more!

The Lip Balm-

The same praise goes for this luscious lip balm...nice spicy scent, all natural ingredients, good value. It does a superb job of moisturizing too, smooth lips with a subtle shine. 

So there you have it. I'm so excited to have found a good source for my natural beauty regimen needs :) I'm looking forward to trying some of their other scents as well...Thai Surprise and Lemon twist sound delightful!
Have you tried any products from the Orange Owl?