July 30, 2010

Happy Friday

I hope all of you had a wonderful week!
I am so excited to head  to Cape Cod tomorrow

for my friend Nicole's Bachelorette weekend.

{ Me, Nicole,  Alli, and Monica}
{Nicole and me -picture taken a couple of years ago at Monica's rehearsal dinner }
Meanwhile,  Aneesh and Ariyana will be enjoying some quality father-daughter time together.

 Will you spending some quality time with good friends and family this weekend?

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July 29, 2010

Another Great Score

Last week my sister and I scored with  this Amrita Singh necklace and this week my friend Phoebe (of Lovejoy Designs) and I scored some great shoes at this shopping event in Boston. 

Stil (unfortunately is closing it's doors soon) Portobello Road and GrettaLuxe, which are all amazing boutiques in the Boston area, were having a huge 50-70% off sale at Alibi Hotel.

All the designer shoes from GrettaLuxe were 70% off! We both bought 2 pairs of shoes each and a couple of clothing items.  But we had to force ourselves from trying on anything else before we ended up spending too much money.
{sorry for the picture quality but we had to get an impromptu picture of the shoes with the camera phone-
you can click on picture to view a larger image}
Phoebe scored with these Black Chloe Sandals and Gold Jimmy Choo Heels and I scored with the Pink Jimmy Choo Platform Heels and the Mandarin Stella McCartney Strappy Espadrilles.  And did I mention EVERY single pair was 70% off?

Have you been lucky enough to find designer items at discounted prices? 

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July 28, 2010

Style Trend: Animal Prints

Until yesterday evening I had no idea I would be doing a post today on animal prints but here is how I got my inspiration. On Monday I found some beautiful animal print stationary with the help of one of my blogging friends Amy Labadie.  Amy offers a great service called  Paper Concierge.  Basically Amy will help you do all your stationary shopping! The website has a great selection of note cards, invitations, stamps, and other fun items.  Amy also has an awesome blog of her own called All the Little Things which I adore.  I don't know about you but I  like to have a good stock of personalized stationary including thank you cards and note cards on hand. So, Amy suggested a few options and I thought these pink animal note cards were bright and fun.   Amy is also helping me order matching return address wraps to go with them.  I cannot wait for these notecards to arrive!

Yesterday morning I snapped a couple of pictures of Ariyana as she was on her way out the door to preschool. And, I was already wearing this outfit in the evening so I decided to throw on this animal print scarf  and this bangle my mom brought back for me from Kenya. (Personally, I like the animal print trend but in small doses. )

So, voila! This is how I got my inspiration yesterday.
Have you embraced the animal print trend for the summer? What fun animal print items have you added to your wardrobe?

      {Forever 21 top, JBrand Skinny Pants,  H&M scarf, Stuart Weitzman shoes,
bracelet-gift from my mom from her trip back to Kenya}

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July 27, 2010

Gazpacho with Avocado Relish

This weekend was so hot  that it was nice to enjoy this refreshing cool summer soup.  I was going to use this recipe from the August issue of Cooking Light but I really didn't want to make the gazpacho with shrimp.  After browsing through some other recipes I found this recipe for Gazpacho with Shrimp and Avocado Relish. I decided to go with this one because the avocado relish looked so good.   So, I used this recipe but modified by leaving out the shrimp and I added some zucchini instead. This is a healthy and delicious weeknight meal and we even had leftovers for lunch yesterday.

Do you have a favorite meal for a hot summer day?

{ingredients for the soup}

{the avocado relish}

{the final product served with some garlic bread}
1 pound peeled and deveined large shrimp          ( I used zucchini and omitted the shrimp)
3/4 cup chopped red bell pepper
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
3 tablespoons chopped red onion
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon hot pepper sauce                                             (any hot sauce is ok)
1 pound plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped
1 medium cucumber, peeled and chopped
1 garlic clove ( I used 2)
1 (11.5-ounce) can low-sodium vegetable juice        (you may need to add more than this)
1/4 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon finely chopped red onion
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1 ripe peeled avocado, diced
1. To prepare soup, cook shrimp in boiling water 2 minutes or until done. Drain and rinse under cold water; coarsely chop shrimp.
2. Combine 3/4 cup bell pepper and next 9 ingredients (through vegetable juice) in a blender; process until smooth. Stir in shrimp. (I like gazpacho a bit chunky so I didn't blend it very long)
3. To prepare relish, combine 1/4 cup bell pepper and remaining ingredients. Top soup with relish.

From Cooking Light, AUGUST 2009

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July 26, 2010

How to update your look

One of my friends and I were discussing how to make some of our older favorite pieces of clothing look more up to date and current. I think one of the easiest ways to update an old look is to simply wear the outfit a different way. The key is to incorporate a newer trend into the outfit by focusing on accessories such as belts, jewelery, shoes, and handbags.  On Saturday I went out to dinner and decided to put on this BCBG dress from last season. This dress actually ties in the back but I really don't like that feature of the dress anymore. So I hid the attached belt by adding  this wide brown belt over it.  I also added a fun watch, a gold cuff, and a pair of  brown peep toe platform pumps to complete the look. I felt like my outfit was instantly updated.

What are your favorite ways to update your look for the summer?

{BCBG dress, Enigma shoes, Prada bag, Tory Burch cuff, La Mer collections watch,
Anthropologie belt, Chanel sunglasses }

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July 23, 2010

Week in Review

This has been quite a busy work week so I am glad it is finally Friday!  Ok today is all about my random ideas and thoughts.

1. Score!  Earlier this week I posted on Beautiful Necklaces and I  featured this Amrita Singh necklace.  My sister sent me a text and said the $100 necklace is on sale for $24 at Hautelook.  I immediately went over to Hautelook and clicked "purchase." And, of course my sister picked one up too!

 2.  Last month I reviewed some laptop sleeves (here) because I really needed a new sleeve for my work laptop. After traveling last with my laptop and no laptop sleeve I finally got around to ordering this laptop sleeve. It was a bargain at $29.99. 

3. And, while I was on vacation last week I came across this article in the Fashion and Style section of the NY Times magazine.  I am sure many of you have heard of the book "French Women Don't Get Fat."   This article kind of reminded me of that book. It's an interesting read if you have a few minutes to click on the link.

From The New York Times:
Aging Gracefully, the French Way
If there is a secret to aging well, Frenchwomen must know it.

Thought I would take a peek at Amazon and see what other books are available about French Women. Here's a few books books that look interesting.

4. Finally, I decided to make a list of things I really want to accomplish  this weekend. (But notice this list only include FUN activities.) It is the first weekend in a while we don't have a lot of plans or things scheduled. I hope to accomplish the following.....
  • Read at least half of the magazines that came in the mail this week
  • Make this Gazpacho recipe I found in Cooking Light
  • Bake cupcakes with sprinkles with my daughter this weekend
  • Go to Core Fusion Saturday morning since I have not been in a while
  • Go for a 5 mile run on Sunday
  • Sit outside on our deck and enjoy this beautiful weather with a nice cold margarita in hand
  • Hit at least one boutique for the summer sale. Moxie looks like they are having a good sale
Have you made any fun summer purchases lately? 

And do you have a list of fun things to do this weekend?

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July 22, 2010

Tea Time

A couple of months ago we went to London for vacation and to visit family and one day while shopping I noticed a variety of colorful teapots in the display window at Whittard of Chelsea. This store has the best selection of fine loose tea, teapots, tea cups and mugs.  So my aunt and cousin were so sweet and thoughtful and bought a tea pot set for my daughter. She loves it and she has "tea time"  almost everyday.  I also love the mugs and tea pot they gave me as a gift.  They are so bright and stylish and perfect to use when friends stop over for a cup of tea.

One of my favorite things to do is to drink chai tea in the afternoon and it is such a family tradition to do this when we all get together.  My mom makes the best fresh Masala chai,  my sister in law makes the best Ginger chai, and my aunt and cousin in London make the best English tea. My sister...well she just likes it when we all make tea for her!
Here is the tea I typically make. I guess I will call it spiced tea or masala chai.  
Spiced Tea(serves 2)
2 1/2 cups of water
1 small cinnamon stick (1 inch)
6 cardamom pods (for best flavor open and crush the cardamom. You can use mortar/pestle or even just a spoon to do this)
6 cloves 
1/2 cup milk (adjust depending on your preference)
sugar (optional)
3 teaspoons loose black tea
Place the water in a pan. Add the cinnamon, cardamom, and cloves and bring to a boil. Next, add the loose black tea and simmer for 5 minutes. If you prefer a stronger and darker tea then simmer a few minutes longer. Add the milk and sugar and bring to a boil.  Turn off heat and using a tea strainer pour tea into tea cups. Serve immediately.


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July 20, 2010

Fall Preview

It is almost time to start thinking adding some Fall pieces to your wardrobe.  Preview the Fall 2010 Collections at Dress, a beautiful boutique in Boston. You can also view and shop the latest arrivals here.  
Do you see anything that catches your eye?

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July 19, 2010

Beautiful Necklaces

I have always loved necklaces because they can transform a simple outfit into one that it polished and complete and this season the choices for beautiful bold necklaces are endless. I love these necklaces below. 

1. Banana Republic Tough Love Necklace $69.50
2. Amrita Singh Yantu Necklace $100
3. Lauren by Ralph Lauren Hammered Circle Necklace $157.54

I bought this necklace from Ann Taylor Loft while shopping with my sister. Somehow, we manage to always pick out the same items especially when it comes to jewelry and accessories.  My sister and I try not to buy the same things because we always borrow from each other, but this time there was a sale on this necklace so we both walked out with one.  
I also grabbed these cotton crinkle shorts from Loft.  It took me a while to decide if I was going to embrace wearing shorts this season. But, after trying these on I was sold.

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July 16, 2010

Week in Review

Our vacation week in Maui is almost over and we will soon be back to reality.  I thought I would share a few pictures from the week and some of the things I loved about this vacation.
What do you love most about vacation?

                                        {I enjoyed reading this book and loved sipping on red wine}

                                              {I loved waking up early and doing yoga on the beach}

                                           {I loved sitting by the pool and long walks on the beach}

                                              {I loved eating dinner while watching the beautiful sunset }

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July 15, 2010

Coral+Sequins+Maui Sunset

Recently my posts have been about my vacation in Maui, corals, and sequins. I figured this collage kind of brings it all together.  This beige straw woven flap clutch is from Calypso and the coral dress is from 344 Newbury. What I love most about this clutch is that it matches almost everything I brought on vacation. I love packing light and it's great when I can use one evening bag with all my outfits.

Even though Hawaii is so far from home, we absolutely love vacationing here and we keep coming back! I love the clear blue water here and every sunset is gorgeous and different from the next.  We  literally plan our entire day and evening around the sunset.

Do you have a favorite vacation spot you like to visit over and over again?

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July 14, 2010

Dinner in Paradise

Aloha from Maui, Hawaii.  We are having a great time on vacation this week.   One of our favorite things to do is to eat our meals at the bar.  It gives us a chance to interact with some of the locals and other guests sitting at the bar.  My husband and I  typically order appetizers and share them as our meal. This way we get a nice sampling of the flavors and we don't end up over eating.   Last night we had this amazing tomato soup, Tuna Tartare, and Seafood Risotto at Spago Restaurant.

Stay tuned to more pictures from Tropical Paradise.

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July 13, 2010

Corn and Avocado Dip

My sister was visiting from Washington D.C. last weekend so we decided to try her recipe for this great summer corn and avocado dip. It is super easy and is great as a salsa with tortilla chips.  Next time I might try it over a white fish like halibut or tilapia.
4 ears of corn
2 firm and almost ripe avocados
1/2 red onion
1 cup chopped cilantro 
fresh pepper
1 tsp sugar
1 whole fresh lime
1 jalapeno
1tbsp balsamic vinegar
1. Add corn, cubed pieces of avocado, chopped red onion, and cilantro in a bowl.
2. Stir in the balsamic vinegar, sugar, salt, pepper, jalapeno, and the juice of 1 whole lime.
3. Mix and either chill in the refrigerator or eat immediately.

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July 12, 2010

Crazy for Coral

I must be crazy for corals right now because I went to Urban Outfitters and picked up this coral Breezy-Button down shirt. And then I went to Anthropologie (of course I had to stop there) and found this adorable tee. 

Here are some other beautiful coral items for the summer.  Many of these products below are on sale so take a peek.

1. M.A.C. To the Beach Lipstick $14
3.Hobo Rachel-Vintage Clutch Was $128 Now $78.80
4 Anthropologie Stormy Weather Creamer Was $16. Now $7.95
5.Piperlime Mystique Shoes Was $115 Now $69.99
6.Amrita Singh Nello Earring $100
7.Patterson J.Kincaid Olvera Pocket Dress Was $128 Now $89.60

And here is the curated tee I got from Anthropologie. This dark coral top is simple and bright but the best part is the ruched sleeves. I paired it up with a brown animal print skirt from Loft, a metallic silver Michael Kors belt, Chanel sunglasses, a couple of silver bracelets, and brown patent leather platform pumps from Stuart Weitzman.  I wore this to work with a cardigan and the heels and then switched to flat sandals for dinner and a nice stroll on Newbury Street.

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July 9, 2010

Sequins for all

                                        (images via Neiman Marcus, Shopbop, and Alice + Olivia)
I love  Alice + Olivia  and I noticed some amazing new arrivals on the website.  I especially love all these sequins items above from the summer and fall collection. 

Tips for wearing sequins
1. Wear one sequin item at a time and avoid mixing with other distracting patterns.

2. A sequin shirt looks amazing paired up with a pair of dark skinny jeans or leggings.  Add a pair of  heels to make a bold statement.

3. If you wear a sequin item during the day then dress it down by wearing flats and minimal jewelry. Consider layering with a boyfriend blazer or cardigan.

4. If you are unsure about wearing sequins then start off by adding some accessories such as a clutch or ballet flats.

My brother and sister in law  gave my daughter this adorable Alice + Olivia sequin dress a couple of months ago. Since, I am not sure when Ariyana is going to wear this lovely dress I had to take a few pictures of  her.  Yes, I had to bribe her with a twizzler! She wanted the Popsicle (she calls it an Ice Pop) but that would have been a disaster with this white silk dress.

Have a great weekend!

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