Steve and I went on a little adventure to Harpers Ferry, WV last week. It was kind of eerie how few people were around, but I’m going to blame government shutdown and hope that more peeps are out and about when the parks are functioning. We were excited to visit because Harpers Ferry serves as the halfway stop for thru hikers of the Appalachian Trail. Steve spent an entire week on the AT this summer in VA (I think his bear count was up to 6 eeeek) and I’ve done day hikes on it in NC, VA, NY, and CT. The Appalachian Trail Conservancy has a little Visitor Center there where anyone can learn more about the AT and buy souvenirs. It was really inspiring to see photos of some of the hikers they had featured on their walls. One sassy grandma hiked it all while having the AT logo painted on her nails. Inside the Visitor Center there was also a Hikers Lounge for those backpackers that are stopping through. I can only imagine how excited hikers are to grab a soda from the fridge and kick back on the computer or to catch up the world they left behind. They also have albums in the lounge filled with polaroid pictures of every thru hiker that has stopped there beginning in the 1970′s. We flipped through one from the 80′s and it was wild to see the gear (or lack thereof) people were using. Proves you don’t need the most expensive or highest tech stuff to hike 2,180 miles. It was pushing 90 degrees outside and we weren’t too happy about it. Escu me, where’s the fall weather and trees, plz!?!?While you’re walking across this bridge you’re in West Virginia, but can see Maryland and Virginia on either side in front of you!
Soooo I’m back in Virginia (YAY) visiting Steve (hire me plz) and we decided to have a Washington, D.C. tourist day because I’ve been dying to see ole Abe and the other monuments, memorials, and museums (ohmy). It was overcast and not crowded which made it perfect for walking around and making a fool of yourself modelin’ with the monuments. This is one of those pictures that would have been sooooo cuteeeee (I’m from SC, he’s from VA herroooo) if only you didn’t have to rely on strangers who only know how to take picts on their iPads. American Psycho?American Gothic?American Cuties.
We beebopped around the Museum of Natural History and the Hirshhorn (btw they’re free but close at 5:30) before taking a siesta in front of the capital. It was absolutely GORGEOUS outside. If someone would have delivered me some food, wine, and a blanket I would have stayed all night. I am so glad that we went out this weekend and took advantage of everything because now there are barricades everywhere due to a little thing known as government shutdown. Awkward.
My mom got this mirror on sale at TJ Maxx when I was about to move into my first apartment but let’s be honest, I haven’t had the need for hot pink decor since I was 12 and the theme of my room was Flamingo. It’s been sitting in the garage collecting dust for 3 years now and I decided it was time for a makeover.
I loved the shape of the mirror but thought some texture would make it a little more snazzy. I added spirals all over using puffy paint all while crossing my fingers hoping that it would turn out.After the puffy paint was dry, I just spray painted the mirror gold. The puffy paint really transformed the mirror and added just the right about of texture and sass! Mirror Makeover success! I’m now dying to use my leftover puffy paint and gold spray paint to try this technique on wine bottles, empty jars etc for some cute vases!
I had been trying to think of a project to use my leftover paint from refurbishing my table when A Beautiful Mess came to the rescue per usual with their simple instructions on how to make your own abstract painting. I have about zero skills when it comes to painting anything other than a solid color (seriously I would lose a 4th grade art competition), but the post made it seem so easy that even I could do it!I thought it would be fun to try out the method on a wooden tray that I had gotten at the thrift store a couple months ago. I painted the tray with a zillion coats of White Asparagus and stuffed my face with some pasta while it dried. Take your main color, mine was Blaze Orange, and paint a long strip in each spot where you want your Ikat inspired shape. Next paint shorter strips in descending lengths off of your main strip. Choose a complimentary color and repeat the same descending length strip process as before. You will definitely want to let several overlap on the edge. Mix some white into your colors to create a lighter shade and paint essentially fat plus signs on top of the Ikat shapes you already have. Pick at least two other colors to help fill in the white space. I just started painting plus signs in navy and then went in and painted smaller ones in a light tan. Then all you have to do is paint the edges of your tray in your main color and spray it with a sealer and voila! You just painted your very own Ikat inspired tray! Told you it was easy!If my Ikat tray turned out this well, I know yours will be ahhhmazzinggg! Such a bright, fun piece that will add some sass to any table while acting as a breakfast in bed enabler…
One Saturday my mom and I decided to get up early and go to Columbia, SC, to check out the Soda City Market and browse some of the antique stores just for funs. I found this table with a travertine tile top hidden at the Old Mill Antique Mall for only $24! It was the best deal in the entire place and I knew I could turn its dingy, dated self into something fab.After removing the travertine, I took the table down to my dad’s shop and sanded the table down. I sprayed it with a primer so that the paint would go on easily and evenly!The hardest part of the whole project was deciding on the paint color. I went to Lowe’s and picked up (40 oops) paint chips that I liked and thought would go well with the tile. I brought them home and had all out battle royales between different shades of blues and reds before narrowing it down to Blue Lagoon and Blaze Orange. I got sample sizes (only $2.98 each!) of each color from Lowe’s to try out. And the big winner was……Blue Lagoon!!!!I painted two coats of Valspar’s Blue Lagoon on the table, paying close attention to making sure that the paint was completely even and smooth. I also decided to paint the legs of the table White Asparagus which so happens to be the exact shade of the travertine tile. Two coats of semi gloss polyurethane were just what the doctor ordered to complete this project!All together this table cost less than $35 dollars, and it looks good enough to put in my imaginary summer house in The Hamptons!
This Veggie Stir Fry became my ultimate go-to meal while at Clemson. Monday would roll around and I would realize all weekend I’ve only eaten fried pickles, chicken tenders, pizza, Bojangles, a quesadilla, a gallon of diet coke, and fries. Basically if I didn’t consume a ton of veggies quickly, I was either going to combust or turn into a deep fried Healz. Go to the grocery store and grab all of the veggies that look good to you (or are on sale). I always get some garlic, a large onion, a pepper, some spinach, broccoli and maybe some mushrooms or zucchini. Just slice up your veggies in the amounts that you want. I love onions so I usually use at least half of a large one, 2/3 of a pepper, a head of broccoli, and one entire zucchini.In your super large pan or wok pour some “Wok Oil” (find it in the Asian section of your grocery store) and add 2 cloves of chopped garlic. As it heats up you can go ahead and add your onions and peppers. As they start to soften you can add your broccoli or zucchini and a couple of tablespoons of low sodium soy sauce. Keep sauteeing those veggies and add your mushrooms if you have them. I probably cook all of the nutrition out of my veggies, but who cares they taste amazing. You can add crushed red pepper flakes if you like things a tad spicy and I like to add a couple tablespoons of teriyaki sauce too. Basically you want your veggies to start looking a little brown from the soy sauce and teriyaki. Toss in your spinach so it can wilt. At some point while you’re focused on your veggies, get some water boiling for your noodles. I usually use an entire pack of Udon Noodles I find in the Asian aisle. Whole Foods even has organic Udon Noodles if you’re feeling extra healthy! The key is tossing your cooked noodles into your pan of veggies so that it can absorb all of that good flavor. At this point I’ll add some more soy sauce for the noodles.Serve your veggie stir fry in a bowl (because everything tastes better in a bowl) with some chopsticks and you’re good to go! I’ve made many different versions of this so feel free to play around to suit your tastes. If you want some meat, frozen chicken strips are a really easy addition. It’s also a great way to use up veggies in the fridge that are about to go bad. This recipe makes a ton of food and the leftovers are amazinggggg and perfect for a healthy lunch on the go!
As my collection of sassy necklaces has grown thanks to Target summer sales, I’ve been dyyyinggg to make a necklace holder using knobs from Anthropologie to display them. I found the perfect knobs last month at the Greenville, SC, Anthro on sale of course (You can read more about my love affair with them here) and was super excited to make my necklace holder. The only problem was that I didn’t have a super cool old board to mount them on, and I didn’t know where I was going to find one. My mom found out about a place called Peach Festival Gardens in Gilbert, SC, where they have tons of old windows, doors, signs, and other funky finds. I ended up finding my board half covered in sand, hiding behind a tent they have set up to protect the prized goods. The guy laughed when I wanted to buy it and let me have it and an old wooden tray for $5. Cha Chinggg! Who’s laughin now!?!My piece of sandy wood cleaned up very well and my best guess is that it’s a rectangular panel from an old door. Thank g my dad is a blacksmith artist, has all the tools in the world, and was able to drill 6 holes for me.I wanted to do something to the wood so it didn’t look like I had a dusty old board hanging on my wall, but at the same time wanted to maintain the integrity of it. I painted on two coats of polyurethane semi-gloss and it turned out perfectly! After it dried I simply screwed my knobs in and put little hangers on the back of it. Well maybe I couldn’t wait until it dried…eeeek instant gratification plzzz!All of my necklace holder dreams came true! I couldn’t be happier with how it turned out. My bejewels are on display instead of hanging out in a pile on my dresser and the final product looks really polished. If you have a big bathroom it would be fun to hang your necklace holder in there and use the middle hook as hand towel holder. Until I move on up in the world, mine’s going to be hanging pretty on my bedroom wall.
I think it’s only fair that I get a new necklace for a job well done, right!?
We celebrated Steve’s 23rd birthday last month at Biergarten Haus (you can’t NOT say it in a dramatic German accent) in Washington, D.C., with his childhood bestie, Scott. It was so funs! Once you step inside you’re instantly transported to Germany and better yet, a place where you can pretend that it’s Oktoberfest 24/7. Awesome.Of course they have an amazing selection of German beers and the servers never let you get thirsty. We were loving the Paulaner Hefe-Weizen.Pretzel Rolls with beer cheese are the greatest things that can happen to you and your beer at Biergarten Haus. Warm, salty, cheesy goodness. These are the things that food day dreams are made of. If you’re anything like me lifting your beer will be your arm workout for the year.How much fun was it?! Welp, this is what the Washington Monument looks like out of the back window of a cab AFTER a trip to Biergarten Haus.
Making your own Pesto sauce is super easy and quick! Seriously, it takes less time than opening a jar of Ragu and heating it on the stove. All you need is basil, parsley, pine nuts, parmesan cheese, garlic, olive oil and salt. This recipe is from a Better Homes and Garden Italian Cookbook my great aunt gave me when I was little. The pictures in the book are SO 1990′s but the recipes are on point!Place 1 cup packed basil in your food processor and pulse a few times. We had JUST enough on our basil plants in the garden!Add 1/2 cup packed parsley (stems removed) and pulse a few more times.Toss 1/4 cup of pine nuts in your food processor. Just a heads up, these guys hide out in the baking aisle. Pulse a few times and add 1/2 cup of parmesan cheese, 1 clove of sliced garlic, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 cup of olive oil.Your pesto will look a little something like this. Use a spatula to scrape down the sides of the food processor and give it a few more pulses to make sure everything is well blended. Serve the pesto in a dish in the middle of the table and let everyone serve themselves. A little pesto goes a long way! You might want to drizzle more olive oil over your pasta if you like it slippery. You can store the leftover pesto in an airtight container in the fridge for two days or freeze it for later.
So fresh, so simple, SO delicious.
I absolutely LOVE cards. As nice as it is that we can communicate with each other in an instant, it’s even better when someone takes the time to send you a note in the mail. My etsy favorite’s list is basically entirely filled with sassy, adorable, and sweet lil cards. Sometimes I don’t want to pay $6 for a card, then wait a week for it to ship to me, and lawd knows Hallmark doesn’t have what I want, so I end up making cards myself. Today I looked in my craft bin and saw that I had tons of card stock and glitter and decided to try and make some sparkly fun cards! The only supplies you need are colored card stock, glitter, rubber cement, and scissors.
First you need to cut your cards out of your card stock. I have an old card that I like the size of that I usually just trace. If you’re feeling sassy you can use decorative scissors to edge your card or even make a liner in a different color.
Now you just need to paint your rubber cement on the card in the shapes you want your glitter to be! It’s hard to get very detailed with the gloopy rubber cement so triangles, circles, and stripes work well.Just pour your glitter onto the glue and shake the excess off. I made my cards outside on the deck to avoid too much glitter clean up.It’s so easy and quick to make just one card, that you should probably make a few more while you’re at it.Look how cute! In only 5 minutes you’ll be able to send some sparkle to someone you care about!