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Thursday, September 30

Breakfast Berry Quinoa

Quinoa is a great gluten-free grain alternative (say that ten times fast) that I have recently added into my diet. For a while I was hesitant to try cooking it, as I had heard that the acidic taste can be overwhelming. Thorough rinsing is a must, so armed with a splatter screen and a bit of water, I decided to take the plunge. (The quinoa is too small to rinse in regular colander.)

I typically use quinoa as a pasta substitute in savory salads with feta, asparagus, balsamic vinegar, and cherry tomatoes, but when I saw this recipe, I decided to try something sweeter. Rich in cinnamon, berries, agave, and walnuts, this dish was the perfect companion for a cup of jo on a cool Saturday morning. Added bonus is that it was also a great pre-trail run breakfast.

I used blueberries and apples in mine since I didn't have any blackberries, and it was a delicious combination. I also substituted almond milk for regular milk and tried raw honey instead of agave. Next time I will try a bit of brown sugar, blackberries, and peaches for one last summer horrah.

What do you think? Will you be trying breakfast quinoa?

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Wednesday, September 29

Coach Craves

With October just around the corner, I can't help but look forward to boots & booties, fur wraps, brightly colored tights, and warm leather bags. I look forward to mixing cool slate greys with warm golds and honey tones and bundling up with leather gloves and tall boots. Here are some of my current favorites for doing just that.

1. Madison Gathered Leather Sophia Satchel
2. Heather Fur Muffler
3. Nancye Boots
4. Sydney Booties
5. Madison Embossed Exotic Sophia Satchel
6. Tessie Booties
7. Boyfriend Bracelet Watch
8. Long Ruched Zip Gloves

What are your favorites?

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Monday, September 27

Behind the Scenes

In the past two weeks I have been lucky enough to receive two blog awards from two very lovely ladies -- the first from Diana of One Crafty Fox and the other from Jessica of Punk Rock Momma. It's always heart warming to know that other people read and appreciate what you have to say, and I personally like to know more about the women behind the blogs that I read. So, to continue to spread the love, here is a combination of both awards which ask for a bit more personal information than your typical outfit post affords.

Name your three best memories:
Christmas Eve at my parent's house - just drinking coffee and telling stories with my family.
Meeting my bestie for the first time - We were paired up as college roommates and immediately became inseparable, as in within minutes.
September 5, 2009 - the day I married my K

Name five things you can't live without:
Wooded running trails
Camping and hiking trips
Time to cook and bake and experiment in the kitchen
Rainy days and quiet time
Kisses from my love

What is the best thing about being a woman?
The quiet, constant strength that we possess - it doesn't need to be elaborately displayed or even explained. It just is.

Name four of the best fiction books you have ever read:
To Kill a Mockingbird
The Kite Runner
Ender's Game
The Chronicles of Narnia
(this list could honestly go on forever....)

State an interesting fact about yourself:
I have a cat named Cooper who is missing his pinky toe and his tail. He acts more like a dog than a cat (he plays fetch) and has more personality than some people that I know.

Because there are so many blogs that I love to read daily, I am passing these awards on to anyone who wishes to participate. I love finding out more intimate details of other bloggers' lives and ideas. It makes this online community we have developed that much more special.

Happy Monday.

images via weheartit
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Friday, September 24

Super Chic, or Super Hero?

One of the fall trends that I am most looking forward to experimenting with is the cape. Ranging from luxurious glam to hippie chic, there are countless options showing up in stores for your cape-wearing pleasure. I know part of me is channeling my inner super hero, but I can't hep but love the effortless glam that a cape can add to an outfit. It's a great way to feel simultaneously laid back and put together. A bit of an oxymoron, non?

1. Feminine and Feline Cape - Modcloth
2.  The Wanderer Cape - Modcloth
3.  Everything in Place Cape - Anthropologie
4. Fairisle Cape - Topshop 
5. Daily Constitutional Coat - Anthropologie
6. Double Duty Cape - Anthropologie 
7. Salem Cropped Jacket - Spotted Moth 
8. Islington Plaid Poncho - J. Crew

What's your take on the cape?
Is it super chic or super hero?


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Wednesday, September 22

Safety (Pin) Net

With (early) morning temperatures requiring a light jacket and daily highs in the low 90s, summer is officially winding down in the southeast. In fact, today is the first official day of autumn! As a small celebration of fall, I decided that layering was a necessity this past weekend, even if it was in the form of lightweight dresses. This safety pin print tunic is fast becoming a favorite of mine as it works equally well as a dress and as a top tucked into a high waisted skirt.

Twelve by Twelve tunic, American Apparel Jersey Slip, Dolce Vita heels, Forever 21 earrings, hammered metal ring & belt, Gryson bag, Essie Mint Candy Apple polish


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Monday, September 20

Just Like a Ballerina*

Ever since I stopped dancing a few years ago, I often find myself drawn to pastel colors and silhouettes that remind me of my former ballet days. Be it in the form of full skirts, accurately named ballet flats, or simply a pale pink, I love the memories and sweet nostalgia of a dance studio that such garments provoke. The pink & lavender heather of this top paired with dolman sleeves and incredibly soft cotton immediately struck my ballerina cord. And despite the still 90-degree temperatures, I haven't wanted to take it off all week.

American Eagle top, Joe's Jean leggings, Target wedges, vintage pearls, Banana Republic ring, Michael Kors bag

Here's to dreams of pale pink, ballet slippers, and sparkly white tutus.
*I've also been listening to a lot of Van Morrison lately. There's just something about the coming fall that necessitates a little VM in the mornings.


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Thursday, September 16

It's All About the Wedge

If I had to choose only one item from my closet to build an outfit around, it would almost always be shoes. I love my skirts, dresses, and tights just as much as any other fashion blogger, but I am a firm believer that even the simplest, mundane outfit can be transformed by a great pair of shoes. Currently on my radar are these lovely gems below. Who says wedges are only for the spring and summer?

top row, clockwise:
Granite Elastic Wedges - Topshop
McSpirit - Aldo
Suede Fringe Wedge - Urban Outfitters
Calcagni - Aldo
bottom row, clockwise:
Minimarket Pleated Wedge - Urban Outfitters
Wisteria Chiffon Tie Wedges - Topshop
Wisteria2 Diamante - Topshop
Annton - Steve Madden

Which ones are your favorites?

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Wednesday, September 15

National Yoga Month

You may have already heard (since I am more than a bit late on this), but September is National Yoga Month! What a great excuse to pick up an old hobby, begin a new one, or just go see what yoga is all about. Not only does it improve strength and flexibility, it is a time to relax into your own body and find a sense of calm.

As for me, I am attending a weekly power vinyasa class. Since I have stopped dancing, I really miss the quiet strength of yoga. Sometimes I forget how much.

How will you celebrate National Yoga month?
For more info, click here.

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Monday, September 13

Funny Face

I have never been a big fan of graphic tees, but I fell head over heels when I saw this one. Something about the sheer cotton, feminine feel and bright pink lips made me decide that it needed to be part of my wardrobe. And while this isn't exactly the most fashion-forward outfit, it served well as slightly casual professional wear.

The Loft tee & clutch, H&M skirt, Seychelles Booties, F21 earrings & ring


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Falling Forward (Part II)

For me, plaid has always been to fall what stripes are to summer, and this season is no different. The colorful patterns and woolly textures are just longing for a cold winter day. To keep things from becoming too woodsmany, I plan to mix in some sparkly sequins and studded accents.

Craftmanship Capelet - Anthrpologie
Northfield Poncho - Rag & Bone
Forks, Washington Jacket - Modcloth
All of a Stud-den Boots - Modcloth

Merino Sequin Sweater - Twelfth Street by Cynthia Vincent
Sequin Blouse - Elizabeth and James
Performance Pianist Cardigan - Modcloth
Jaloux Sequined Top - Piperlime
Metallic Sequin Bell Skirt - J. Crew

Dolce Vita Buckle Ankle Boots - Target
Miu Miu Embellished Knee Socks
Crystal Stud Belt - J. Crew
Kristin Studded Leather Bag - Coach

What are your fall must-haves?

*With so many things catching my eye this fall, I have broken up my favorite trends into smaller posts. Find Part I here.

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Friday, September 10

Hello, Alexa

It's no secret that Alexa Chung is one of my favorite style icons. I love her quirky, laid back style and I-don't-care-this-is-who-I-am attitude. That being said, it's no wonder that I am completely in love with everything in her Madewell line. The items are classically chic and look like something Alexa herself would wear.

clockwise from top left:
annie blouse

Unfortunately, some of my favorites (not pictured here) have already sold out online, but I plan to make a trip to the store sometime in the near future.

What are your favorites from the collection?

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Thursday, September 9

She's Buying a Stairway...

When it comes to black, my wardrobe is somehow consistently lacking. Sure, I have the token black pants and boots, but flowy tops like this one rarely make the cut. I'm not really sure why, since I love the lightweight fabric and breezy fit. This black ensemble was perfect for professional wear during the day, and for the evening, I added a fedora and another layer of jewels for a bit more pizazz.

F21 blouse, ring, and necklace, Urban cigarette pants, The Loft flower belt worn as a necklace, Target fedora, Dolce Vita wedges, Essie Ballet Slipper polish


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Reminders are Good

I needed to see this.
Maybe you did, too?


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Wednesday, September 8

Weekend Adventure No. 6: Mount Yonah

As a small get-away for the long weekend, husband and I drove up to Cleveland to visit some of our favorite friends. We spent the weekend lavishing in the cooler weather, reading under blankets on the porch early in the morning, eating homemade salsa, blueberry muffins, and peach creme cobbler, and sunning on the top of Mount Yonah.

The hike to the top was short, but filled with rocks and slightly steep climbs that left my sinus-infected self a bit winded. I have to say, though, that end result was absolutely worth the effort. We dallied for over an hour at the top of the mountain, sitting on the rocky outcropping and watching the birds & planes fly by. The cool breeze, brilliant blue sky, and warm sun made the day absolutely perfect.

Up above the rock outcropping is a large clearing that is perfect for a campsite. The hike is short and moderate in difficulty due to the steep rock, but I would definitely recommend this trip to anyone (read: even less seasoned hikers)! It's also an easy day hike if camping just isn't your thing.

How did you spend your long weekend?


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Tuesday, September 7

Falling Forward (Part I)

Labor Day has come and gone, which means that fall is quickly approaching. I know I will miss the warm days of summer, but I look forward to days of cozy sweaters, layered scarves with necklaces, boots and tights, and jewel-hued garments. This year my fall inspiration list is the most extensive it's ever been, but sprinkled among my favorites are soft leathers, army greens, and leopard accents.

Leather Saddle Stitch Jacket - Topshop
Theory Leather Shorts - Net-a-Porter
Modern Aviation Jacket - Modcloth
Leather Buckle Shorts - Topshop
Ecote Whipstitch Cross Body Bab - Urban Outfitters
Quilted Faux Leather Jacket - Twelve by Twelve

Jersey Cotton Parka - Topshop
Tyms Heels - Aldo
O'Reilly Jacket - Anthropologie
Strapped for Panache Boot - Modcloth

Rebecca Taylor Spot On Tee - Heery's
Giuseppe Zanotti Sculpted Platform Wedges - Shopbop
Foley + Corinna Bag - Piperlime
Purr-fect Pinup Shorts - Modcloth

What are your favorite things for fall?
Part II coming soon.


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Sunday, September 5

Year One

One year ago today my life completely changed in the most wonderful way possible... I walked down the aisle (to a slow, acoustic version of Walk the Line) and married my K.

I believe in marraige.

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Wednesday, September 1

Pantry Staples

One of the things I find most intriguing about another person's home is what is in their pantry. Not their choice of living room decor or vibrant paint colors, but their choices in food. The things we decide we just can't live without, those that our cupboards are never deprived of, those things spark my interest. 

It's different for everyone. In college, my food staples were chicken (tofu) nuggets, hummus, sharp cheddar, and Nesquick hot chocolate mix. As I have gotten older, my tastes have evolved a bit, but the comfort of hot cocoa on a late night is something that I never forget. In fact, it is still a mainstay in my home, especially during the colder months.

My pantry is always full of:

1. Sunbutter - delish with apple & banana slices
2. Lara bars - a great snack and 100% natural
3. Almond milk - the perfect addition to a morning smoothie
4. Avacado - added to just about anything
5 & 6. Chicken & Apple sausage and turkey bacon - the best addition to a weekend brunch 
Applegate Farms is 100% natural, no nitrates!
7. Dark chocolate - an absolute must

{I'm trying this. I've been modifying my diet for the past few weeks, and I already feel better. Granted, I haven't given up my coffee creamer or my desserts yet, (Ahem, anyone for some banana pudding??) but I have high hopes.}

What are your pantry staples?

images via we heart it
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