Saturday, July 31, 2010

Finally Mine!

Last weekend I finally took the plunge. 

The previous weekend before that, I had called Zappos to inquire when was the actual purchase date of a pair of shoes I had bought, but had never worn - their policy is 365 days for returns.  Even though the original purchase was made in April 2009 (oops), they still offered me the chance to send back the shoes for a FULL REFUND... um, yeahhh... 

So, since I had purchased the never worn shoes with a gift card (thanks Mom!) I got a store credit.  I knew immediately as I got my online credit code I was going to be using it at their sister site - Zappos Couture - to order the Marc by Marc Jacobs Classic Q Hillier Hobo.  I had been sweating this bag for the entire month of July... so with coupon code in hand I got my bag for less than retail.

It was especially nice to come home to my puppies, my husband, AND my nice new smooshy bag this week.

Can't wait for Fall and cooler weather! 

I also want to send some hugs and wet pupper kisses to Zappos' Customer Service... you rock!

Friday, July 30, 2010

[Real Deal and Awesome Steal] The 'Perfect' Ballet Flat

If Santa Claus is reading, he knows I've been wishlisting some Tory Burch Reva's for months now.  I've been hesitant making the purchase, 1. because it's summer and I haven't been wearing flats 24/7 and 2. I'm not 100% they are the most comfy option for me out there....

My genetically challenged feet NEED comfy shoes... especially flats, which I wear way too often for someone who is also vertically challenged...

So when I noticed Tory Burch's new line of flats, the Eddie... I thought they'd be worth the try...

Readers, these shoes are like putting your feet into a cloud!

The footbed is lined with memory foam, the leather is stretchy and molds to your foot, I'd like to challenge that there may not be another shoe as comfy out there... (that you'd actually want to wear in public)

The Real Deal
Eddie Flat - Tory Burch $178

However, since this is a "Real Deal and Awesome Steal" post... If you want to sacrifice cloud-like-comfort for price, but wear an identical looking shoe, these babies that Anh from 9to5Chic posted yesterday are definite steal...

The Awesome Steal
The City Flat - The Gap $39.50

I'll be spluging on the Real Deal in month or two... possibly even on multiple colors!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

[OOTDs] Working It

Hey there readers!

I'm back home with my snuggly puppers and Husband too... and couldn't be happier :)   Work travel always wears me out.  Long days of meetings, followed by free longer multi-course dinners at nice restaurants, and pupperless hotel beds (ohh I think I'm on to something!)... I'm always happy (and heavier) when I return home.

I took some shotty OOTD pics in my hotel room since I actually was dress a bit more corporate casual this week, as opposed to my usual "casual" casual...

Liberty of London Floral Key-Hole Top - Target, spring '10 (here)
Navy/Greyish Editors - Express, '07ish
Black Belt - Express, '06/'07 ?? 
Liz Claiborne Martini Pumps - DSW, '08
Key to Your Heart Necklace - F21, winter '09 (here)
Grey Melanie Button Cuff Cardigan - J.Crew, fall '08 (not shown)

Blooming Lattice Cardigan - Anthropologie, spring '10 (sold out, but some on eBay)
Blue Double Layer Tee - Banana Republic, '07ish
Khaki A-Line Skirt - Banana Republic, spring '08
Brown Snakebite Belt - Anthropologie, summer '10 (lookalikes in this post)
5-Row Opal Disc Stretch Bracelet - South Moon Under, spring '10 (here)
Unpredictable Prism Earrings - Anthropologie, summer '10 (here on sale!)
Sonya Huarache Wedge - Banana Republic, summer '09


Ok... I changed a few times yesterday...  I first tried this, but realized I didn't like my hair and that I was one peg leg away from being totally 'pirated' out... so after the pic I made a few adjustments.
Field Game Cardigan - Anthropologie, summer '10
(call CS, I saw some grey and navy ones in store last week)
Silk Frances Cami - J.Crew, summer '09 (here)
Black Editor Shorts - Express, 2007ish (here)
Liz Claiborne Martini Pumps - DSW, '08
Woven Straw Headband - J.Crew, whoknowswhen...

Aside from the pirate mishap, I think I eased back into corp-cas environment pretty easily.  Oh well, it's good to be back.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Currently Missing....

This face....

...and this one too

**insert me here, please** 

back be shortly readers!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

[Recipe Share Sunday] Fish Tacos & Slow Cooked Mexican Shredded Chicken

I don't know who I thought I was last night, but my husband sure loved it.

Since this was our first weekend together we had in a while, I thought I'd cook a nice dinner.  Husband said he wanted some organic chicken, and while I still haven't reintroduced poultry into my diet, I wanted to cook something we both could enjoy.

I decided to make some Mexican shredded chicken tacos for him and fish tacos for me.

I've made plenty of tacos in my lifetime, but never without ground beef, turkey, or fakey veggie "beef".

I used a combination of these four recipes below to make my own "try as I go" meal...

Slow Cooked Shredded Chicken
Shredded Chicken Seasoning
Fish Tacos
Fish Taco Sauce

First up, I took two organic chicken breasts and placed them over some long and wide slices of vidalia onion, with 1 cup of water, in my crock pot.  Then I used the seasoning recipe from the recipe link above, and used the following ingredients.
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/3 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp dry oregano
  • 1/4 tsp cumin powder

I turned the crock pot on to HIGH and left it for 3 hours.  Then I prepped the Fish Taco Sauce.  Now, I wasn't completely prepared to make this sauce the same as the recipe calls for, so I only used the following ingredients.
  • 1/2 cup reduced fat sour cream
  • 1/2 cup reduced fat mayonnaise
  • 1 lime, cut in half
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1/4 tsp ground chipotle chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp capers, minced
  • 1 hot pepper of your choice, seeded and minced
The recipe calls for the mixture to have the consistency of a creamy salad dressing and to add lime juice until you reach this result.  I ended up using a whole lime.

After hanging around a couple of hours, online shopping, I got back up to finish preparing.  I started with mixing the beer batter for my 3/4lbs of cod.  I cut the cod up into small pieces (about 2-3"strips).

Then I used the beer batter recipe from the fish taco link above.  It had the consistency of pancake batter.
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 Tbsp cornstarch  (I used corn meal)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup beer

I dipped the fish pieces in the batter before dropping them in a frying pan over medium heat with a good two (wrist)swirls of EVOO.

While the fish was frying, I cut up our toppings....
  • Diced Plum Tomato
  • Jalapeno Slices
  • Avocado Slices
  • Shredded Lettuce (for chicken tacos)
  • Shredded Cabbage (for fish tacos)

When the beer batter is golden brown and the fish is flaky and opaque, drain on paper towels to absorb excess oil.

At this point, I turned off the crock pot and shredded the chicken breasts and onion slices in a mixing bowl. 

All the work was done, just time to build our tacos....

Fish Taco
Chicken Taco

Pretend Chef's Notes:  Next time I'd increase the amount of water in the crock-pot to hopefully keep the chicken from drying out.  I'd also use less cumin in the fish taco sauce and add the cilantro the recipe calls for, I just didn't have any on hand.  Other than that, we had a tasty meal and lots of leftovers :)

Thursday, July 22, 2010

[Real Deal and Awesome Steal] Peep Toe Clogs

I'll admit, the clog trend quickly grew on me since first spotted at last Fall's Chanel Spring RTW show.  And, for me, it's still a more admire from a distance and watch it while it passes type of trend.  However, if I were to jump on wooden heel bandwagon, I'd test the waters with these slingback (woohoo, I won't fly out of my shoe and on to my face) peep toe clogs...

The Real Deal
Via Spiga "Astro" Slingback Clogs – Nordstrom $198

and if I didn't want to spend nearly $200 on a "trend"... I'd go for these shockingly similar look-a-likes...

The Awesome Steal
DV by Dolce Vita 'Jezabel' Sandal  – Nordstrom $89.95

Happy Shopping!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

[Wishlist Wednesday]

Lots of new wants... some old... still all fun to share!

Fawson Pump in Light Gray - Aldo $49.98

Harmony Chain Necklace - Anthropologie $19.95

Joey Top - Yumi Kim $139

Insouciant Tank - Anthropologie $58
(I like the punchy yellow too)

Everyday Cardigan - J.Crew $59.99

Marc by Marc Jacobs 'Totally Turnlock Large' Zip Around Wallet - Nordstrom $228

DV by Dolce Vita 'Jezabel' Sandal - Nordstrom $89.95

Nars Laguna Bronzer - Nordstrom $32
(because when you don't have a real tan, you have to fake one!)

Marc by Marc Jacobs Frill Silk Dress - FarFetch $241

Bauble Bracelet  – Urban Outfitters $24

Silence & Noise Marled Blanket Stripe Cocoon Cardigan – Urban Outfitters $48

Patent Eddie Ballet Flat – Tory Burch  $178

and of course....
Marc by Marc Jacobs Classic Q Hillier Hobo - Zappos $398 

whew, that's a lot for one day....

Sunday, July 18, 2010

[Recipe Share Sunday] Portobello Mushrooms Stuffed with Spinach and Ricotta Cheese

Yeah, it's been a long time since I got to cooking on this blog... I'd say probably the majority of you readers didn't even realize I cook on occasion.... you know, when I'm taking breaks from making complete and nutritious meals out of cracker barrel cheddar and ground black pepper triscuits, served up with a bold California red. 

The husband is coming home from a long golf weekend and I started thinking, maybe for dins I should cook something... on the stove!

 -- you know, instead of out of a plastic wrapper and box (see dinner mentioned above). 

So I hit up and found this little recipe that I randomly have the most of the ingredients for to make my own version.  The real recipe is for Portobello Mushrooms Stuffed with Spinach and Goat Cheese, I'm subbing Ricotta for Goat, because that is what's hanging in my fridge.  Other subsititions made are listed in red....

Marinated mushrooms

1 cup olive oil
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce
2 garlic cloves, pressed
1/4 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup Marsala (optional)   - not using
4 large fresh thyme sprigs - using thyme seasoning
6 large portobello mushrooms  - using two XL Portobello Caps
1 10-ounce package frozen spinach - using fresh spinach
1 pound button mushrooms - omitting
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup chopped sweet onion (such as Maui or Vidalia)
3 garlic cloves, pressed
1/4 cup plus 6 tablespoons finely grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup unseasoned dry breadcrumbs
1 5-ounce package soft fresh goat cheese, crumbled - using ricotta cheese

For marinated mushrooms -

Whisk first 6 ingredients and Marsala, if desired, in medium bowl for marinade. Stir in thyme sprigs. Cut stems from mushrooms and place stems in processor. Arrange mushrooms, gill side up, in 15x10x2-inch glass baking dish. Pour marinade over mushrooms and marinate 4 hours, turning to coat occasionally.
For filling -

Cook spinach according to package directions. Drain; cool. Using hands, squeeze excess water from spinach. Place in small bowl.  (Saute fresh spinach if not using frozen)
Add half of button mushrooms to processor with portobello mushroom stems. Using on/off turns, process until coarsely chopped. Transfer to medium bowl and repeat with remaining mushrooms.  (I skipped that step) Heat oil in heavy large skillet over high heat. Add onion; sauté until beginning to brown, stirring often, about 3 minutes. Add garlic and stir 30 seconds. Add chopped mushrooms, sprinkle with salt, and increase heat to high. Cook until almost all liquid evaporates, stirring often, about 8 minutes. Season mushroom onion and garlic mixture with salt and pepper. Transfer to large bowl; cool to room temperature.

Add spinach, 1/4 cup Parmesan, and breadcrumbs to mushroom mixture; toss to distribute evenly. Add goat cheese ricotta and toss gently to distribute evenly. Season filling to taste with salt and pepper.
Preheat oven to 400°F. Transfer marinated mushrooms, with some marinade still clinging, to rimmed baking sheet, gill side down. Roast until beginning to soften, about 15 minutes. Turn mushrooms over. Divide filling among mushrooms. Sprinkle remaining 6 tablespoons Parmesan cheese over and bake until heated through and cheese begins to brown, about 15 minutes.


**and if you want to catch up on all the other cooking check out the Recipe Share tag**

Thursday, July 15, 2010

[Coupon Code] Piperlime 20% Off Fall Arrivals

Check it out!  Another (and rare) Piperlime Code on select new Fall arrivals....
Use code TREAT4ME at check out to receive 20% Off! 

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Internet Gems...

As I recapped earlier in the week, I had a blast at my childhood friend's Bachelorette Party over the weekend.  The icing on the cake was that the oh-so-stylish (she's an accessories editor) bride was so kind to gift all the girls who came a piece of jewelry from ShopTheLook.Net.

I had never heard of the site, but the fun pieces are super reasonable on the wallet and if you spend $20, shipping is only $1.98 using code SHIPSAVE06. And if you spend $50, shipping is free... can you tell shipping is my nemesis??

Similar to F21, a lot of the pieces have been inspired by their more expensive counterparts, but here you can stock up on the play things for way less...

Like the Chan Luu bracelet I found steals for last week, here is another look-a-like in orange for $14
Beaded Wrap Bracelet - Shop the Look $14

Or this necklace that is similar in style to Anthro's Double Torsado Necklace for $28,

Looped Beaded Necklace - Shop The Look $18

And aside from the 'inspired by' pieces, there are plenty of other cool (and affordable) baubles that would be so fun to own.

(looks like a Banana Republic necklace that was available last winter for 3x the price!)

Do you know of any "internet gems" (pun intended), please share in the comments below!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Weekend Recap

Hope everyone had a great weekend!  Mine was fairly eventful, so here's a short run down in pictures of what took place....

Because I had plans to leave early Saturday morning, the Husband wanted to spend some quality time together.  At his suggestion we went to THE MALL!   Granted, it was mainly so he could buy a new pair of sneaks, but I snuck in some time to place my grabby hands all over my current obsession...
Marc by Marc Jacobs Hillier Hobo (in black, I finally decided) - Nordstrom $398

Afterwards, we went home ate leftover pizza and watched (you guessed it) more How I Met Your Mother....
Season 3, Episode "The Bracket"

Saturday morning I woke up to rain (finally) and headed down to A.C. for my friend's Bachelorette Party.  Since the weather sucked, we decided to go to The Pier and get our shop on.  We even helped the Bachelorette pick out a hot dress to wear out that night...
...inside The Pier

After that we got ready for a evening out at 'da club'.... I actually can't remember the last time I was a club, I think it was 3 years ago at another bachelorette party in AC.  The party included:

the requisite sashes, veils, and blinky plastic rings

copious amounts champagne, vodka, and coconut rum

and this....
"It's Your Funeral" was a great night!
(photo taken prior to be surrounded by 'fist pumpers' at the club)

After a late night, I headed back home the next morning and spent my day snuggling with puppies on the couch and watching more of HIMYM with the husband...

Season 3, Episode "Sandcastles in the Sand"
Season 3, Episode "The Goat"
Season 3, Episode "Miracles"

Great Weekend.