Louboutin Manicure

I've loved this idea since hearing about Adele's Grammy manicure from last year! Now, I don't have matching pumps like she did, but I still love that whenever I look down at my hands (which is often) I see the red peeking out.

I painted the left hand silver with a gold accent nail, and the right hand gold with a silver accent nail.

The underside is painted with a bright shimmery red.

Don't forget to use a polish that isn't sheer and to shape your nails first!

Gold: Sally Hansen Hard as Nails in Golden-I
Silver: Milani 3D Holographic in HD #509
Red: Rimmel London in Hot Rock (#332)


Walden, The Winter, and I

Getting more comfortable pairing greys and browns!

So basically it was too cold outside to even think about attempting to freeze my fingers off taking photos of this look. It had started out a sunny morning, but by noon it was snowing and our plans to head to Harrisburg got canceled.

Sooo... I was pretty much snuggled up on the couch and read all day! Except when making a floury mess in my kitchen later that evening when making homemade tortillas. Mmmm! But I did run to the store to grab lettuce and tomatos for taco night! Almost didn't make it back up the hill due to snow, but we HAD to have tacos, so I HAD to venture to the store. :)

Dress & boots: thrifted
Sweater: Old Navy
Belt: came on an H&M skirt
Necklace: F21
Tights: Target


Cavatappi with Sausage and Spinach

I'm a big lover of spaghetti and meat sauce. It's a comfort food that I could (and probably do) eat at least once a week. I love this recipe, because it is like a jazzed up version! I had never heard of cavatappi before making this recipe, but it wasn't hard to find in the pasta isle at all.

Cavatappi with Sausage and Spinach (source)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 small onion, peeled and diced
  • 1/2 lb spicy Italian sausage
  • 1/2 lb fresh spinach leaves coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 lb dried cavatappi, cavatelli or gemelli pasta
  • 28 oz can whole tomatoes in puree
  • 1/3 cup half & half (heavy cream works fine too, it's all I had so it's what I used)
  • 1 oz finely grated Romano or Parmesan cheese

  1. Heat oil in a 12-inch cast iron skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then cook onion & garlic a couple minutes, stirring well so that garlic doesn’t burn. Add sausage, breaking up with a wooden spoon, until browned, 5 to 7 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large pot, bring salted cooking water to a boil, then cook pasta uncovered until al dente.
  3. While pasta cooks, add spinach and 1/4 cup water to sausage in skillet and sauté, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes until the spinach is tender and wilting. Drain off a couple tablespoons of tomato purée from the can, then add entire can of tomatoes, breaking up w/ back of spoon so the tomatoes are in large chunky pieces. Simmer for a few minutes. Add a few swirls of cream and stir into sauce. Add pasta to skillet, tossing until well-combined. Season with salt & pepper and top with grated parmesan.

My new favorite comfort food. The recipe stated it served 4, but I got 6 servings out of it. Perfect for a snow day!


Let's Hear It For The Boy

I think I am making 2013 a year of challenging myself. My last challenge was about wearing funky colored tights in a way that I wouldn't normally wear them. This post is about pants.

I have a big bottom. There. I said it. I like to hide my ass-ets under skirts and dresses and I usually accentuate my small waist.

After reading about IFB's project #80. I said to myself, "Challenge accepted!" and then I said "Suit up!" And I hope there are a handful of readers out there who know I am quoting Barney from How I Met Your Mother.

So I donned this fabulous new blazer I got for a steal on Gilt and then stole my husbands trousers. I am nearly a foot shorter, so I stapled the hemline for the look. Surprise! Manly.

But I like things girly, so I added a lace top, pin curls, and a pink belt and heels. This just makes the menswear look a bit softer and more my style!

Blazer: Stella and Jamie via Gilt.com
Top: Maurices
Trousers: husband's from Menswear House
Belt: Target
Necklace & Heels: F21


Saltine Toffee

Made with just Saltine crackers, butter, and brown sugar! Then topped with chocolate chips and crushed nuts of your choice (or none at all)! My husband called this his favorite candy.

Saltine Cracker English Toffee (source)

  • 40 salted saltine crackers
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 cups milk chocolate chips
  • 1 cup chopped nuts (I used half pistachios, half walnuts)

  1. Preheat oven to 400* F.
  2. Line a large jelly roll pan (about 15x10") with parchment paper. Lay the saltine crackers evenly on the pan, fitted tightly together.
  3. In a saucepan, melt the butter and brown sugar over medium heat. Bring it to a boil and let it boil for three minutes without stirring. After three minutes, pour the hot brown sugar mixture evenly over the saltine crackers.
  4. Bake for 5-7 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and sprinkle the chocolate chips across the toffee. Let them sit and melt for a couple of minutes and then use a spatula to spread the melted chocolate evenly and gently across the toffee (like frosting).
  5. Sprinkle chopped nuts on top of the melted chocolate. Let the toffee and chocolate cool completely (I put mine in the fridge). When cold, invert pan over another large jelly roll pan or a clean work area. Gently peel paper off bottom of toffee. It should lift right off. 
  6. Turn back over to face up. Break the toffee into bite-size pieces.
  7. To store, keep in an air-tight container for 1-2 weeks or in the freezer for a couple of months. 

Ours only lasted about a week before we ate it all!


Outside My Comfort Zone

So these mustard tights... I love them and yet I don't know how to wear them! (first seen here) I have a red frock I'm holding onto for summer, but I want to wear them all the time because I love the color of mustard.

...so this post is about taking a chance. Pairing the tights with a color that is not the safe choice: Barbie Pink.

I kinda dig it.

(This is a pic of me tripping on a crack)

(lil bit of lining love)

Also, this cardigan is pink, but the sky is so grey that it's hard to tell...

In the words of my 11th grade English teacher (and Edgar Alan Poe most likely), the day was "dreary." 

It was my favorite thing to look down as walking when wearing this outfit and catch a glimpse of my tights through the slit in the dress. The color was truly more fascinating in person.

What do ya think? Do the colors work, or never again? :P

Jacket: Nicole Miller for JCP
Cardigan: Old Navy
Dress: thrifted
Purse & Slip: vintage
Tights: Target
Shoes: F21


Madam Moviefone

We finally saw The Hobbit! Abe, our friend Jens, and I went to the local IMAX theatre the other day and donned our 3D specs and sat in a large theatre basically all to ourselves!

I wanted to dress nicely, but knew I wouldn't really be seen in the dark movie theatre, so black it was! And the scarf just brightens my world. It was rainy and dismal outside, but I was cheery!

After the movie, we got our grub on at our favorite sushi bar! I was surprised how easy it was to spend money after this little outing, so no more eating out for a while. Operation "Save Money" begins!

Dress: Calvin Klein
Scarf: Target
Boots: Sole Society "Leylani"
Coat: JCP


Farm Shows and Other Things I'll Never Understand

On Friday, Abe (my husband), SarahJean (my bestie), and I attended our first Harrisburg Farm Show. Living in rural South-Central PA, one hears of these farm shows as one might hear of Fashion Week in NYC! It is once or twice a year and people come from all over...
There is even a need to dress accordingly.

But there is one main difference from Fashion Week: butter. 
On the overhead sound system, if ever someone was lost, we would hear it announced like this: "Norma K, please meet your family by the butter sculpture." or "Fred J, your party is waiting for you at the butter sculpture."

We went, because we were curious. We went, because we heard the milkshakes were famous (they were pretty good). We went, but we probably won't ever go again.

We just aren't farm people. Sure I had a plaid shirt and cowgirl boots on. But I also had all my teeth! Ha ok that was mean...

We did have a good time, but mostly because we were enjoying each others company. And there were horses!

That's one biiiiig rig!

Abe wouldn't wear flannel, so he wore a beer hat! lol

Plants in boots...

Neat gutter irrigation gardening display

Kisses through their stalls <3

"Hey Guys!"

SJ and her new BFF, he is starting to stick his tongue out!

Lady rider and her awesome boots!

Don't get me wrong though, if I had a horse and a chicken and bees and a lavender field, I'd be one happy girl. It's just gotta be near a shopping mall! :P

P.S. We never did find the butter sculpture!

Shirt: JCP
Skirt: unknown NYC shop
Belt: vintage
Boots: borrowed from a friend


30 Minute Baguette

Quick & Crusty French Baguettes (source)
  • 2 cups very warm water
  • 1 packet yeast
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3-4 cups flour
  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. 
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the warm water, yeast, and sugar.  Set the bowl on top of your preheating oven for ten minutes. 
  3. Stir in the salt and add the flour a half-cup at a time, until the dough becomes soft but not sticky. Knead the dough until elastic.
  4. Cut the dough into four even pieces. Roll each of them into four long, thin ropes.
  5. Twist together two of the ropes to form one loaf. Twist the other two ropes together to form a second loaf.  Transfer both onto a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper. (You can now bake the loaf right away or allow it to rise for an additional 15-30 minutes on top of your warm oven.)
  6. Fill a large bowl with 3-4 cups of ice. Open your hot oven and place the baking sheet with the baguettes inside, then toss the ice cubes on the bottom of the oven and quickly shut the door. Do NOT open your oven for 15 minutes.  Bake until golden brown, about 15-18 minutes.
  7. Serve fresh and hot with your favorite olive oil for dipping.

I halved the recipe for my husband and me to eat on NYE (see this post)
It was delicious and warm and I ate it plain! 
Oh how I love carbs!


A Silent Film

This just kinda happened while I was photographing my outfit.
I added the stole, then the flower, then the mirror...
What would the plot of the story be?

Shirt & Skirt: JCP (old)
Fur stole: vintage