Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Personal Style

While I've been cleaning out my closet over the past few days, I realized that my sense of style is constantly evolving. There are a few key traits that have tended to stick with me over the years but overall I found that as my life continues to change, so does my closet. So today I wanted to touch on personal style and whether you all feel like you are set in your ways in regards to style or if you find yourself changing and molding to each moment like I am. 
Recently, especially since entering the blogging world full-time, I've found that my wardrobe is inspired by the bloggers I love. I may see an accessory on a blog that I fall in love with and I immediately begin searching for something similar to add to my wardrobe. At the same time my fellow bloggers give me more courage to try something fashion-wise that I never thought I could pull off before. You know when you see models in the magazines wearing something cool--but because it's a skinny fashion model walking down the runway you immediately don't associate it with everyday life attire? Well seeing bloggers sport different styles have the opposite affect on me, they make me want to break even more out of my comfort zone and experiment more. 
While in Costa Rica my friend Carla was always sporting these beautiful long flowy printed dresses and they looked fabulous on her. She definitely has that Aussie style that I don't normally see in upstate New York. Immediately it got my mind thinking about how I could incorporate floral maxi skirts into my wardrobe while still maintaining my personal style. I would describe my style as masculine with a feminine twist. I love structured pieces like blazers, leather jackets and button down shirts. But at the same time I love bright colors, funky purses and statement jewelry that will make those masculine pieces seem less harsh. 
As I've grown up, I have learned my lesson on which fashion trends don't work on my body type (ruffles, super feminine pieces, and anything pleated). I'm also always going to be the girl who chooses a pair of converse over a pair of heels. Yet, I also realized I don't need to fall into a certain category. One day I may want to dress on the preppy side and other days preppy doesn't suit my personality and instead I need to throw on a leather skirt with studded sandals to feel more like myself.  My style constantly changes from day to day depending on my mood, and now I know thats okay.

So my question to you is, how would you describe your personal style?
Does your style change or do you stick to what works?
What inspires you style-wise?

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

New Recipe: Chicken Kiev

Happy Tasty Tuesday!
So I'm not a huge fan of raw chicken. Typically when I make a recipe with chicken, I will buy one of those rotisserie pre-cooked chickens and shred it for the needed recipe. However, I make an exception for this chicken recipe because it's too delicious to pass up. It's a quick an easy recipe that makes for a nice dinner for two.

  • 1 package of boneless chicken breasts
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs
  • 1 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tsp garlic salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 4 tbsp butter (softened)
  • 1 tbsp parley
  • 4 ounces pepper jack cheese cut into strips
  • 5 tbsp butter melted
  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees
  • Place chicken breasts one at a time on a board and using a pounding mallet, pound chicken until each piece is about 1/4 inch thick and set aside.
  • On a plate combine bread crumbs, garlic salt, pepper, 1 tsp of the oregano and set aside.
  • In a small bowl, stir together the 4 tablespoons of softened butter, parsley, and remaining 1/2 tsp oregano.
  • Spread about 1/2 tablespoon of the herb butter mixture across each chicken breast, about 1 inch from the lower edge until all of it is gone. Then lay a strip of jack cheese over the butter mixture and roll the chicken breast around the cheese mixture into a cylindrical ball.
  • Dip each chicken bundle into the melted butter and then roll the chicken into the breadcrumb mixture until coated.
  • Place chicken (seam-side down) into a 9x13 pan and bake, uncovered for 25 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink.
  • Enjoy!

Monday, April 28, 2014

The Tropics

So last weekend I was wandering around the mall looking for a birthday gift for my dad and I ended up shopping for myself instead (guilty). While browsing I passed Bebe and they had some beautiful summer prints. Normally I tend to disregard Bebe and I very rarely go in there but they had so many items that caught my eye that I had to go into the store. Lately I've been really craving bright fun prints. I think it may be because we've had such a horrible winter that the brighter and more funky the print the better. 
Anyways, I do get excited when I see a new store or collection that I fall in love with because I've been trying to break away from my typical stores and be more open to new things. I think it's easy to fall into a rut where you only buy clothes from certain stores and sometimes it's nice to randomly go into stores you don't normally try because you never know what you are going to find. Now I've got a few Bebe dresses and skirts currently sitting in my shopping cart that I am going to wait for a sale and then pick up. 

Here are my four favorites:

What store did you recently pop into and find that you love what they sell?
Are there any items/prints you've been craving for spring?


Sunday, April 27, 2014

Sunday Thoughts + A Weekend Recap

Wahhh where did the weekend go? I am so not ready to go back to 5 day work weeks! On the bright side, May is right around the corner. Now if only the weather would coorperate. I'm happy it's no longer freezing but 50 degrees is not cutting it... bring on the 70's! I feel like I'm currently in their weird transition with my wardrobe where its still a little chilly to wear dresses but it's way to warm to wear heavy sweaters. 

Anyways, I hope you had a wonderful weekend, here is a quick recap of mine:
  • Friday night I got dinner with a girlfriend and another met us for drinks after. It was nice to catch up on what I missed while I was away.
  • Saturday I went to the mall (shocker) and picked up a couple items for my wardrobe. I originally went out to buy my dad a birthday present and ended up coming home with only items for myself (whoops). 
  • Saturday night I went out to celebrate my friend Dana's birthday. A couple my friends and I had been out of town these past few weeks so it was nice to finally be reunited with my entire crew. We always have fun when margaritas are involved.
  • After lunch I have to go back to the mall to get my Dad a birthday gift since his birthday is tomorrow... nothing like waiting till the last minute on things. Any good dad-gift ideas?! I feel like dads are so difficult to buy for!
  • Tonight we will be having another Game of Thrones get-together. This season has been so great and it's been highlighting some of my favorite moments from the books.
What did you do this weekend?

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Vacation Recap

I am suffering from serious post-vacation depression so bear with me today while I relive such an amazing trip. I can honestly say that this was the most fun trip I have ever gone on and I am so happy I decided to step out of my comfort zone and go on this once in a lifetime experience. At the end of this trip, I can say I made so many new friends and grew so much closer to the friends/family that I already knew going into this trip. I've discussed before how it's hard to make new friends after college because you don't always get the opportunity to meet new people outside the workplace--but thanks to my cousin who organized this entire vacation, I can say that I made new lifelong friendships in Costa Rica.

Top Moments From The Trip:
  • The Marlin del Rey Catamaran Tour- This was by far my favorite part of this trip. All 25 of us had a private catamaran to ourselves for an afternoon where we were able to sail out into the middle of the ocean, snorkel, jump into the pacific off the side of the boat and eat the most fabulous lunch ever. Plus, it was open bar so I was sipping delicious pina coladas while soaking up the sun and pretending I was a millionaire. 
Our Boat!

Just the ladies

  • Playing Games- Anyone who knows me well knows that I LOVE to play games. Literally any type of group game will do, especially because I am very competitive. Throughout the trip we had multiple rounds of trivia, Mafia and other party games---I was in my element. On Saturday, my two cousins put on a giant game show where we were randomly broken up into 6 teams and had to compete in a variety of challenges including relay races, an egg hunt (followed by a word scramble), and a trivia round. The most exciting part?! My team came in first (GO BLUE!)!
The Winning Team

Relay Races
  • The Volcano/Rainforest/Hot Springs Excursion- Okay despite being VERY car sick for the length of this full day adventure I still had fun. Not everything went according to plan... it was too cloudy to see the volcano and all the animals went into hiding while we trekked through the rainforest but we had plenty of laughs and were able to relax and unwind in the beautiful natural Costa Rican hot springs. Plus we made plenty of memories and inside jokes throughout the trip while enjoying the panoramic views....
The bus ride from Hell

The group in front of the "volcano"

Everyone enjoying the hot springs
  • Pool/Ocean Time- The most bonding we did was when we were all just hanging out relaxing by the pool or venturing into the ocean. The waves were incredible and the water was warm which was a new experience for me. The weather was in the 90's every day, so cooling down while soaking up the sun was a must.
Yay for underwater cameras!

I'm in there somewhere
  • Food- Seriously the food in Costa Rica was delicious. Since all 25 of us stayed in a private house together we had a chef make us breakfast and dinner every night. I made a point to try everything that was put in front of me. Who would have thought rice and beans would be such a great breakfast side dish? It was nice to have a moment each day where we were all together, it was like Thanksgiving every night!
Our Breakfast/Dinner table
  • The Sunsets- I was lucky to see multiple Costa Rican sunsets with the group while on the trip. We would take a walk down to the beach and all sit together to watch the sun go down.

Overall, I had such an amazing experience with this group of friends and I am literally counting down the days until we can plan another trip together. I'm already bugging my cousin to find out where we are going to go next year!

What was your favorite place you went on vacation?

Friday, April 25, 2014

Friday Favorites

I am seriously recovering from vacation brain. Going back to work on Thursday was not my ideal choice and I really needed a vacation from my vacation. My apologies for my writers block but I promise I am going to settle down this weekend, catch up on my blogs and fashion magazines and get re-inspired for a new week. I hope all of you had a wonderful week, I look forward to catching up on what you guys were up to while I was gone.

In the meantime, here is what I am loving this week:

Since Costa Rica I've been obsessed with sarongs. This may sound strange but I've never owned a sarong before and I don't know what I was thinking since I'm always tying my towel around my waist when I get out of the pool. This is a much more stylish alternative to this!

Essie's Neon Collection
Trying every way possible to show off my tan and these new Essie colors are amazing! That teal color and the lime green are my favorites. 

I've been expanding my maxi dress collection lately. They are perfect for those cooler summer nights and there is something fun about wearing a long flowing dress. I'm currently lusting over this navy and white one. 

The Following
I've been "following" this show since is premiered last year and it literally makes my heart race while I watch it. I'm a sucker for scary TV shows (The Walking Dead/American Horror Story) but this show is scary in a different way because it's about a cult, which could totally happen in real life. Next week is the season finale and I can't wait to see what happens. For all of you who want to check it out, season 1 is on Netflix.

My talented Aussie friend Carla has an amazing design blog that I highly suggest you check out. She has such an amazing sense of style (I want to steal everything in her closet) and a great eye for home design as well. Her creative posts are definitely a must see, so show her some love.

What are you loving this week?

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

I'm Back!

Hi Guys!
I am officially back from Costa Rica. It was so nice to take a break from the real world and just live in the moment. For the first time in my life I put away my cell phone for a whole week (with the exception of a couple snap chats) and spent my days enjoying the people I was with. I had such an amazing experience making memories with old friends and family and was so lucky to make new lifelong friends on this awesome journey. I am seriously counting down the days until next years trip.

I can't wait to share more stories about my trip with all of you. I'm still waiting for everyone to share all of their photos so I'm going to wait a bit and instead just share a couple pictures I took. I had every intention to take plenty of "fashion photos" of the different outfits I planned so I could do posts on "vacation fashion"...however, I soon realized that I would be spending 90% of the time in a bathing suit. Plus, when it's 95 degrees goes out the window #sorrynotsorry. Anyways, I'm excited to catch up on what I missed this past week and hope you all had a great Easter!

The group

Just the ladies

 My cousins and I on our way to the volcano.
Yes, I'm rocking the Survivor bandana.

 Jumping into the middle of the ocean!

I missed you all, fill me in on what I missed while I was gone!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

New Recipe: Chicken Florentine Alfredo

I know sometimes the recipes I post can be heavy on the pasta, but as an Italian girl we have pasta for dinner at least once a week. This means I have to come up with creative ways to make pasta fun and new each time. This is another quick and easy recipe... sometimes I feel like Rachel Ray with my love of the 30 minute meal!


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 lb skinless boneless chicken strips
  • 1 package fresh spinach
  • 1 jar of Prego Artisan Three Cheese Alfredo Sauce
  • 1 package of fettuccine
  • Grated parmesan cheese for garnish


  • Heat the oil in a large pan over medium-high heat.
  • Add the chicken and cook until browned and fully cooked.
  • While chicken is cooking, boil water in a separate pan and cook the fettuccine. 
  • Stir in spinach and sauce into chicken mixture and bring to a boil.
  • Once fettuccine is cooked, drain from water and add to the chicken mixture.
  • Toss and season with black pepper and top each plate with a sprinkle of parmesan cheese.
  • Enjoy!
**FYI: This was the first time I made this recipe, however, in the future I would add mushrooms and red peppers to the dish for some extra flavor**

***FYI #2: I'll be back from Costa Rica late tonight so I should be back to my regular posts tomorrow or Thursday... I miss you all***


Sunday, April 20, 2014

Happy Easter

Wishing all my readers a Happy Easter!

I am a little sad that I will be away from my family this Easter Sunday since I have so many wonderful memories of childhood Easter egg hunts and plenty of food. However, I will be spending this Easter morning on a catamaran boat followed by snorkeling (I guess I won't be missing the old traditions too much)!
** I'll be back to my regular scheduled posts on Wednesday or Thursday. **

What are your Easter traditions?

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

See Ya Later America

Hey Guys!
If you're reading this right now I should currently be on a plane on my way to Costa Rica (landing at 11:00am)! I've decided to take a little break from blogging while I'm there so besides the few pre-scheduled posts I have made, there will be no live posts from me until I return next Wednesday. Instead, I'll be spending my days lounging on the beach, hiking to a volcano, soaking in the hot springs and snorkeling!

I hope you all have a wonderful week!
I'll see you in 7 days!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

New Recipe: Deviled Easter Eggs

Just in time for Easter I wanted to share with you my recipe for deviled eggs with an Easter twist. Typically on Easter we have the traditional ham dinner but when we go to my Aunt Pat's house she always has so many wonderful appetizers that I'm never hungry for dinner. Two years ago I decided to make these deviled eggs to add to the list of appetizers. They were surprisingly easy to make--but be forewarned I dirtied a lot of dishes to make them.

  • 1 dozen large white eggs
  • 1/2 cup mayo
  • Food coloring (I used green, blue, purple, pink and orange)
  • 1/2 tsp ground mustard
  • pinch of paprika
  • Bring pot of water to a boil and place eggs into boiling pot- turn heat down to low and cook for 15 minutes.
  • After 15 minutes drain the water and run the eggs under cold water.
  • Peel the shells off the eggs and cut each egg in half, then scoop out the yolk and place into a seperate bowl.
  • Fill 5 different bowls with water and drop approximately 3-4 drops of food coloring into each bowl and stir (like you would to color easter eggs). Then drop the hardened egg whites into the various color bowls and let them sit for 10 minutes (or until they reach your desired color). You may want to add more food coloring if they are not dark enough to your liking.
  • While egg whites are sitting in the water, mash the egg yolks into pieces and add mayo and ground mustard until light and creamy.
  • Once the eggs are of desired color take them out and put them on a tray, then scoop out egg yolk mixture and place them into the colored egg whites.
  • Then sprinkle a pinch of paprika on each egg, then refrigerate until ready to serve.
  • Enjoy!

Do any of you have Easter food traditions?

Monday, April 14, 2014


I'm curious to hear how effort plays apart in all of your friendships. Once college ends there comes a time when you begin working full time and you no longer spend your days in constant contact. Life tends to get messy and there are always meetings to attend, errands to run and when you get that little amount of downtime, it's easy to understand why you want to spend it sitting on the couch in complete silence with only the sounds of trashy reality television playing in the background. 

Within the last year I've seen a particular change in a few friendships and it's definitely caused me to re-evaluate what I want in my life and whether I wish to move forward with certain people. I think the primary issue that tends to frustrate me more than other things is effort. At what point do we stop making an effort for someone who clearly makes no effort on their end. I have plenty of friends who I wont see for weeks but the second we reunite its like old times, and thats okay with me because everyone is busy. But I still really appreciate the person who despite being busy for 4 weeks in a row, calls me on the 5th week and says "Hey, I haven't seen you in forever, lets go get drinks". Moral of the story is, I don't think friendship is a one way street.

I normally have the mentality of inviting everyone when I plan something, my mother always gave me the advice "don't give them anything to throw in your face later on." But when time after time I invite someone someplace and they choose not to reply or they always have an excuse- at what point do I stop calling? Also at what point do I stop inviting someone who clearly has different behavior ideas as myself. Overall, this post is mainly about letting go of those who don't really impact my life in a positive manner. I want to surround myself with people who make me smile and show true effort in maintaining a healthy relationship. Unfortunately this may mean that I have to let go of friendships that have been in existence since I was a child, which makes me sad. 
Side note: after re-reading this post it sounds super depressing which is the opposite of what I am actually feeling. I need to reinforce that I have amazing friends who I could not imagine my life without. It's just this strange effect of growing up where we all experience this shift in friends and we become more aware of what we want. 

Partners in Crime

How important is effort in friendships?

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Sunday Thoughts + A Weekend Recap

This weekend flew by even though it doesn't seem like I did a lot, do any of you have that problem? I am officially in vacation mode which means the next two days of work are going to be struggle city for me. This quote is especially fitting for this week since it will be the first time I am leaving the country. As I've vented before, I really want to travel but the idea of actually traveling makes me very anxious so I will most likely be a ball of anxiety until I land in Costa Rica on Wednesday. 

Here's a quick recap of my weekend:
  • Got dinner with my dad on Friday night, our favorite buffalo chicken pizza...yum.
  • Saturday morning I had another NYS Test. I'm really trying to get on as many lists as possible to advance my career but this whole "taking a test first thing on a Saturday morning thing" is really cramping my style. I did, however, finish a 3 hour test in 50 minutes #sorrynotsorry.
  • After the test I finally finished ironing all my summer dresses and packing up everything (you can check out some of my picks here). Now I only have to make sure those last minute items are done on Tuesday night.
  • I finished House of Cards Season 2. What a crazy ending! I'm thinking Breaking Bad will be my next Netflix marathon of choice.
  • Today I have to run a couple errands then head over to my cousins house for brunch.
  • I'm hoping to get my first pedicure of the season later this afternoon -hooray!- what color should I get?!
  • Also, I have to bake a batch of brownies because tonight I am hosting a Game of Thrones viewing party for a group of my friends. It's gonna be a big episode tonight, if you're a fan of the series (or the books) you won't want to miss it!
What did you do this weekend?
Do any of the rest of you have viewing parties of your favorite TV shows with friends?


Saturday, April 12, 2014

Pack Your Bags

This is currently the view from my bed right now. I'm knee deep in summer attire attempting to go through bins and determine what I should be packing for vacation next week. My theme for vacation is Brights and Stripes-- and judging by my pile of clothes I am succeeding at it! Needless to say- I don't have a ton of time to write a fabulous Saturday post so instead, I wanted to share with you 4 travel posts from some of my favorite bloggers.

History in High Heels: Packing Tips: Carry-On Checklist

Cupcakes and Cashmere: Travel Prep Points

Ilo Inspired : Meant to Live

Also feel free to share with me your packing secrets! They will be very much appreciated!


Friday, April 11, 2014

Currently Loving...

Hooray! The weekend is finally here! This is my last weekend before I leave for Costa Rica, so of course this week took forever to end because I have a serious case of 'vacation brain.' I can only imagine how brutal next Monday and Tuesday are going to be. In the meantime, I have a lot of trip preparing to do this weekend!

Here is what I'm loving this week:
I actually really hate to pack, especially because I tend to overpack and then my luggage ends up being approximately 8,000 lbs. However, packing means my trip is less than a week away! Can you all just remind me throughout the week that I don't need to bring my entire closet with me (I need to be yelled at!). Also, serious question--- is it really better to roll your clothes instead of just packing them/does it really save you more room?!

Banana Republic Dress
I was walking around Banana Republic last weekend and they had so many cute summer dresses! While I was there I fell in love with this white beauty-- just waiting for a sale so I can make a purchase!

This week I started the Divergent books (I know, I'm late to the game). I really wanted to read the first book before I went and saw the movie in theaters. I was worried it was going to be another Hunger Games knock-off but so far I haven't been able to put it down! 

Buffalo Chicken Pizza
Tonight I'm getting dinner with my dad and we are ordering one of my favorites- buffalo chicken pizza. I need to find a good recipe online and learn to make it because it is just too delicious! I've been looking forward to stuffing my face all week.
The Weather
Yesterday it hit 66 degrees in the 518 and I couldn't be happier to say goodbye to my winter coat for good (or until next year).

What are you loving this week?