Tuesday, October 28, 2014

WORN: Might As Well Jump(suit)

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A recent realization: I understand why so many futuristic, dystopian films show society relegated to jumpsuits (am I imagining this? ... I might be. No, I'm totally not: Tron and Bladerunner both heavily showcased jumpsuits...), these things save time. A lot of time. I was actually dressed before Chris this past Saturday before we went out for breakfast.

In other news: 

I would be totally OK with it if my hair decided to grow faster

I'm on day 17 of my 3rd Whole30 challenge and am feeling pretty fantastic, a nice reminder of how clear-headed I feel without sugar.

I can not wait to go home for Thanksgiving this year and am pretty much counting down the days.

On that note, I've really been missing Maine lately. More than usual.

Our car broke down.

This fall has been unusually warm.

I do not have a Halloween costume. What are you going as?

Get the look: FP Denim Coveralls // Thrifted Bass 'Elly' lace-ups // Vintage bag // J. Crew Sweater // Studebaker Metals bracelet

Monday, October 27, 2014

Homemade Chai Concentrate

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It's that time of year. The time of year when sun streams through our living room windows, deceptively bright in contrast to the cool, crisp air outside. The coziest time of year, when you need something hot to warm you from the inside out. Something like chai. Since doing our first Whole 30 in 2013, Chris and I have been cutting out as much pre-packaged and processed food from our lives as possible. It's been a big change, but one that has resulted in better sleep, better skin, improved health, and happier attitudes. But, that doesn't mean I don't miss or crave (and occasionally give into) those favorite comfort foods that beckon from grocery store shelves. Tazo chai concentrate is one of those foods. Blame it on my days as a barista, but sometimes nothing beats a hot mug of this spicy beverage, especially on cold fall days, unfortunately the store-bought version is packed with sugar, and the kind from the tea bag just doesn't hold up, in my opinion.

As part of my full time work, I created this homemade version of chai concentrate. The amount of sweetener and spice level you add is entirely up to you, and it contains no questionable ingredients. As an added bonus, this will make your house smell incredible. Yeah, the cost of the spices may feel a little steep compared to the carton of pre-made, but they'll last you awhile. I recommend hitting up Target for cheap spices (they even have organic). Let me know if you make it, I'd love to know what you think.
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12 crushed cardamom pods 
5 cinnamon sticks 
8 black peppercorns 
10 cloves 
1 medium piece of fresh ginger, peeled and sliced 
1 vanilla bean, sliced down the center 
2.5 cups of water 
2 star anise 
1/2 tsp allspice 
2 tbsp coconut sugar or honey (to taste) 
1/4 tsp nutmeg 
5 black tea bags 
Small saucepan 
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Resealable glass jar Add everything but the tea bags to the sauce pan and bring to a rolling boil over medium-high heat. Once boiling, reduce heat to medium low, cover, and allow to simmer for about 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, shut off the heat and add the tea bags to the pot. Allow the tea to steep for 5 minutes. Strain the liquid into the glass container and allow to cool completely before covering and refrigerating. Use within seven days. 

To make hot masala chai, combine equal amounts concentrate and any type of milk in a small saucepan and heat on medium until simmering. Transfer to a mug and enjoy. For iced, combine equal parts concentrate and preferred milk over ice.
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Note: This recipe was first published here as part of my full-time work at Free People. To read more of my work, go here.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Here & There 10.25

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Happy Friday! What do you have planned this weekend? We're up bright and early tomorrow for a breakfast date at Honey's and a very much anticipated autumn hike. I can't wait. On Sunday I'm hoping to finally switch my closet over from summer to fall. It's finally sweater weather. 

Here's what I'm loving this week...

Really excited to welcome Vintage Urban Renewal as a sponsor. Ohh this shop just gets me, absolutely loving this.

Jess always has the most amazing things in her shop, this necklace is gorgeous.

What a beautiful place to visit.

Loving grey for fall.

This gorgeous necklace is high on my wishlist.

How to make vegan candy corn - it's so easy and it tastes like cookie dough.

Cute shoes for fall.

The coziest scarf to ever exist.

How to style bangs.

Jen's girls are the cutest.

Fall jacket love: this grey stunner, a green plaid beauty, and this lovely thing.

Love these sleek over the knee boots.

The cutest casual booties.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Ubiquitous Fall

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Fall, why are you the most lovely, and the most fleeting? I say this nearly every month, but I can't believe October is almost over. Time is moving at an alarming rate these days and I'm trying to savor as much of this season as I can. A few weeks ago my mom rolled into town for the weekend, and despite 80 degree temperatures, we headed out of town to pick apples. I love being closer to home again. Eight hours may sound like a long drive to some, but it sure beats the fourteen hours it took to get home from Pittsburgh. We actually get to go back home for Thanksgiving this year, and I can't wait

Friday, October 17, 2014

Here & There 10.17

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Happy Friday night! What do you have planned this weekend? Something fun I hope. This was just one of those weeks for me, so a plan-free Friday night is a very welcome thing. Tomorrow we're grabbing a coffee and then pointing our compass outside city limits for some much needed exploring. We have a very small canine companion bunking with us this weekend, and I'm excited to see what life is like with a dog. 

Anyway, here are a few things that caught my eye this week...

A gorgeous clutch from Jess Amity. This would be a cool addition to a date night outfit.

It's time to stock up on tights! These have always been my go-to.

Can you spot Momo?

It's shelter dog month - celebrate by making these homemade dog treats (they were a hit at the office!)

J.Crew is having a pretty great sale this weekend - 30% off  sale items with code 'SHOPFALL'. These are in my shopping basket.

How to transform your morning routine. This is actually pretty great.


Take an extra 30% off sale items at Madewell, too. Loving these boots.

I always love seeing updates from Julie, her photos and words are gorgeous.

Acceptance vs. self improvement.

Such a pretty dress.

How to just be.

This is a beautiful bag.

24 hours in Philly with the Free People blog team.

10 creative (and generally respectable) couple's Halloween costumes

Friday, October 10, 2014

Worn: I'm Saving Myself For Tom Selleck

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When you find a pin of this caliber, you don't leave it behind. It's been awhile since the days of pin-covered jackets -- pin covered everything really, did you do that as a teenager? -- but when I found these two at a flea market recently, I decided it was time to bring it back. This was my first "fall" outfit, one that actually felt like I was dressing for a new season, a look that finally made me feel is if I actually got dressed. My poor feet need to be trained to like stacked heels again after four straight months of Birkenstocks.

But these pictures are a couple of weeks old, and right now I'm writing from my hotel room in Richmond, VA, waiting for Chris to arrive. A little outside Richmond, if you want to get technical about it. The rest of my team has left, but I'm staying on to get some content for work, and to see one of my favorite people. The past couple of days were really great, though. This was my first experience travelling for work and I'm so thankful that I get to go places again and not just be anchored behind a desk all day. It makes an enormous difference, being able to get out into the world every now and then. And, oh, do i have some awesome stuff planned for the next couple of days. I can't wait to share. But for now, "hey, how are ya?"

Get the look: Vintage jacket (similar) // MinkPink Dress (similar) // Samantha Pleet x Wolverine 1k Boots (similar) // Vintage & thrifted jewelry // Vintage backpack from Omnia Vintage (c/o - similar)

Monday, October 6, 2014

Here & There 10.7

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Happy Tuesday! How's it going for you so far? I went for a haircut this weekend, and well, I'm not stoked about it. It's pretty awful actually, but hey, at least it's hat season, right? This week I'm off to Richmond, Virginia for work and I can't wait, it' my first experience travelling for FP and my first time in Richmond and I have some really fun things planned. So stay tuned!

PS - I'm binge watching Gilmore Girls and couldn't be happier. Except I think Chris and I might be Babette and Maury?

Get the look (above): Top: Free People // Jeans: Old J.Crew (similar) // Converse low tops // Juicy Couture sunnies (similar)

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// AA Tent Dress

// 90's Denim Jacket from Wolf Mama Vintage -- Save 20% w/code 'HELLOFALL'

// How amazing is this hand tooled leather cuff from JessAmity?

// Ron Swanson quotes as motivational posters. Perfection.

// This plaid shirt dress is pretty perfect for fall.

// The perfect autumn jacket? Yes, the perfect autumn jacket.

// A review of all the Jersey Shore tanning products. Because whatever.

// Loved this post on building closet essentials from Jen.

// This outfit is so cute. Also love these.

// The definitive guide to every single drugstore mascara. Seriously.

// 90's halloween costumes. Terrifying.

// Love these cute boots.

// Cat loaves, served up hot.

// Might just be my new winter jacket.