Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Wanted: Week Six

1. Porcelain lamp, Christopher Splitzmiller  2. The Painters Palate Case, Joss & Main  3. Embellished Bib Necklace, Shourouk $841  4. Pink Pumps, J. Crew  5. Be Class Throw Pillow, DENY Designs $69.99  6. Gold Sequin Skirt, River Island $30  7. Lucite Clutch, Lulus $44
Monday, December 30, 2013
Monday, December 23, 2013

Hip, Hip Hooray for Christmas Vacation!

My annual Christmas blogging vacation came a bit early this year and I'm gonna go ahead and keep it in effect until after the holidays…that means no new posts here through the end of next week.  But never fear!  I'll be back before you know it with the renewed energy and focus that always seems to wash over me after this little break.  I'm hoping and praying Christmas 2013 is your best yet…enjoy every moment with your family and friends (I know I will)!  Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 16, 2013
Thursday, December 12, 2013

The Foodie Files

I made dinner for the gentleman of Dismas House this evening and we had such a wonderful time sharing a meal together (in fact, if you're in Nashville and looking for a place to get involved might I suggest giving their website a once over).  Since Davey works there, I had him ask around for meal requests over the course of the last week…when breakfast for dinner came out on top across the board I got straight to organizing my menu.  The centerpiece for the meal ended up being a really tasty Baked French Toast.  I found the recipe here and was delighted with how easy but scrumptious it ended up being.  

1 loaf of french bread
8 eggs
2 cups whole milks
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 TBS vanilla extract
1 TBS Butter, For Greasing

For the topping:
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1 stick cold butter, cut into pieces

Grease a large baking pan with butter.  Cut bread into cubes and evenly distribute them in the pan. Crack eggs in a big bowl and whisk together with milk, cream, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla.

Pour evenly over the bread.  Cover the pan tightly and store in the fridge until needed (overnight is ideal).

For the topping, mix the flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, salt and some nutmeg in a separate bowl. Stir together using a fork. Add the butter and with a pastry cutter, and mix it all together until the mixture resembles fine pebbles. Store in a plastic bag in the fridge.

When you're ready to bake the casserole, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Remove the casserole from the fridge and sprinkle the topping over the top. Bake for 45 minutes for a softer, more bread pudding texture or for 1 hour-plus or more for a firmer, crisper texture.

Scoop out individual portions. Top with butter and drizzle with warm pancake syrup and sprinkle with blueberries.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Wanted: Week Five

This week's gift guide is all about the guys in your life…there's something for dads, brothers, husbands, boyfriends, and buddies alike.  No one knows how to buy for your boys like you but here's a couple of creative ideas if you're stumped.

1. The Mr. Porter Paperback, Mr. Porter $35  2. Anchor the Call Mug, ModCloth $9.99  3. Broadmoor Quilted Jacket in Camo, J. Crew $228  4. Bear Bottle Opener, Amazon $14.99  5. MacBook Pro Vintage Leather Book Case, Amazon $79.99  6. Home Blending Whiskey Kit, Master of Malt $82.04  7. Men's Starter Kit, Kiehl's $42
Monday, December 9, 2013
Thursday, December 5, 2013

The Foodie Files

I had the great pleasure of checking out the grand opening of Pinewood Social yesterday, Nashville's latest, greatest addition to the foodie scene.  If you're in or around Nashville or planning a trip here anytime soon put it on your list of must visits.  For starters, the atmosphere is killer…very Nashville-esque.  

Since I knew the background of Josh Habiger, the chef who developed the menu (and previously worked at critically acclaimed restaurants like Alinea and The Catbird Seat), I had extremely high expectations for the food.  Long story short, it did not disappoint.  

Their coffee bar is run by my favorite local haunt, Crema, so I went with my standard order of a delicious hot Cuban coffee (so tasty).  

I ordered the lobster roll for lunch and whoa.  It was incredible…so, so fresh!  The menu is extensive and surprisingly affordable.  I can't wait to go back and try a few other things, though I'll be hard pressed not to get the lobster roll again.  They're open very early to very late (7am-1am…pretty incredible, right?) so I'm hoping to get in for a brunch sometime in the very near future.  

As if all that wasn't enough, Pinewood Social offers a few other bonuses the rest of Nashville will be hard pressed to compete with…one of which is this in house re-claimed bowling alley!  Come summer, they'll have a pool, cabanas, bocce ball court and all kinds of other goodies.  I told you- it's a gem.  For reservations, call 615-751-8111…I've got a feeling it's about to get real busy so get to dialing!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

3 Ideas

The holiday season tends to have one of two effects on folks…it either makes you feel completely overwhelmed with shopping and deadlines and planning or it makes you want to slooooow doooooown, sit by a fire, sip on hot cocoa like it's your new job and accomplish nothing.  Obviously, neither is ideal and sometimes both strike at once!  If you find yourself in such a predicament, give a few of these ideas from Forbes a try this week.

1. Don't let e-mail change the direction of your day.  Set aside specific times in your day to check it and respond rather than letting it get you off task over and over (and over).

2. Stop throughout your day to ask yourself,  "Is what I'm doing right now productive?"….of course, you've gotta relax at some point, but when you're looking to stay on the ball the best way to do it is to stay cognizant of what you're actually spending your time on.

3. Making a To Do list probably goes without saying, but it's just as important to think of a small way to reward yourself for completing your list!  It doesn't have to be anything extreme, but the promise of a little happy treat can go a long way.
Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Wanted: Week Four

I'm taking our Wanted series to the next level today by using it to post our first gift guide of the season.  The items below are so wanted they could essentially serve as my unofficial Christmas wish list.  If your Mom/Sister/BFF loves fashionable classics, you might find an idea or two here for a gift she'll adore!

1. Leather Opera Gloves, Amazon $68  2. Golden Tassel Necklace, J. Crew $65  3. Fur Stole, Zara $59.90  4. Bow Pump, Aminah Abdul Jillil $195  5. Personalized Monogram Stud Earrings, Nordstrom $48  6. Creme De La Mer, Nordstrom $155  7. Clarasonic Skin Cleansing Brush, Sephora $150  8. Moscow Mule Mug, Amazon $20.20
Monday, December 2, 2013