Thursday, July 31, 2014

Hickman and Bousfield

When I went away for the week, knowing that I would have very limited, if any access to wifi/the internet, I put alot of time and thought into what materials I would bring to entertain myself during downtime. I originally planned to bring British Vogue and Vanity Fair magazine but neither were available in my local BN before I left so I begrudgingly grabbed Porter magazine. I say begrudgingly only because I was pissy that I couldn't find the mags I was originally in search of. I am now so happy that I grabbed Porter because it was the Summer Escape issue which was so deliciously indulgent to read while sitting in the middle of the forest in rural Canada.

I really enjoyed everything in this issue but what I most loved was the feature on Caroline Hickman, her husband Ralph Bousfield, and their son Jack. Currently, they live in Francistown, South Africa and visit Ralph's safari camp monthly, where he provides guided safaris to cashed up guests (per night rates start at $1200/pp). The story provided a beautiful look into the life of Caroline, her family, her growing collection of safari chic items via Hickman and Bousfield (available here), and the gorgeous Botswana camp (Jack's Camp) that she and her family love.

I'm not entirely sure why this story struck such a chord with me, but I can't stop thinking about it, and read it twice already. Likely its the gorgeous photos, exotic locale, and obvious affection between the three that drew me in.

Caroline wears clothing/jewelry/accessories from Hickman & Bousfield
Shoes by Penelope Chilvers

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Kingston Olive Oil Co.

While on vacation I stumbled upon an olive oil and balsamic vinegar tasting bar run by Kingston Olive Oil Company. I dragged my mother into this tasting bar following a tour of Fort William Henry in Kingston, Ontario and I was pleasantly surprised when I sampled several different, delicious oils and vinegars. 24 Olive oils (21 infused varieties too!) and 28 vinegars are available for purchase in addition to 21 gourmet salts as well as handmade Olive Oil soap and spice rubs. All of the oils are infused in Canada and are available for shipping to the US!

Kingston Olive Oil Company imports extra virgin olive oil from around the world based on the harvesting season and guarantees each batch for 18 months, which I am told is the lifespan of any oil. Most oils that we purchase in stores far exceed those 18 months and are not as fresh as they should be. I can tell you that I am now questioning all of the oil I've ingested in my life based on this new found knowledge.

I came home with three bottles that day; Vanilla Balsamic Vinegar, Milanese Gremolata Infused, and Cayenne Infused Oil for my father in law.  My mother came home with 5 or 6 bottles as well, I'm not even sure which she decided on because she loved every single one!

I had no idea how to use it, but I knew that I LOVED the flavor of the Vanilla balsamic, so I took it home and figured out that I would find a way to use it later. Luckily for me, KOO's website offers recipe suggestions and I fully intend to share with you guys what I made-stay tuned!

Monday, July 28, 2014

Who am I?

So I'm back from vacation and I'm ready to jump back into the blogging game. I had no wifi access and just enough cell reception to call my husband once a day and send a few texts. It was nice to step away for a week, and I can't wait to share my trip here, but I'm still getting everything back in order. I came home to 320 personal emails and another 160 work emails, so it's safe to say I'll be busy for the next few days. Luckily, I've spent the past week thinking about Back to Cool shopping that is likely to commence any day now that my vacation is over. Without further ado . . . 

All of you 90's kids out there will totally agree with me, we grew up in the best era. Hey Arnold, The Spice Girls, Beanie Babies, and Pokemon. The fashion was interesting to say the least, but I'm so excited that everything has come back. Up until 2 months ago, I despised Birkenstocks and denim jackets. I went so far as to make fun of one of my closest friends for having a pair of Birks and rejoicing when her Dachshunds tore them to bits. Now, I feel like a jackass because I see how ahead of the trend she was and always is (sorry Kate)!

Now I find myself with those orthopedic-looking sandals, a thumb ring, my husband's giant plaid button down, and shredded shorts that I can't wait to pair with a denim jacket. Who the hell am I?! I can tell you this, my brain is very susceptible to repetitive images. Continuously seeing birks and 90's revival pieces on every blogger ever and all of my Pinterest boards have me convinced that I too can pull off these styles. The jury is still out on whether or not I can, but I believe that with enough confidence and levity I can make it work. 

Friday, July 18, 2014

Life on the Lake

I've been pretty inconsistent this past week, and I apologize for that because I personally hate inconsistency! The reason I've been so flaky is that I will be leaving for vacation early on Sunday morning and I've been driving myself crazy at home and at work to make sure I'm in a good place when I leave.

I highly doubt that I'll be posting while I'm away, the jury is still out on whether or not wifi will be available (how terrifying exotic). You can follow me on Instagram where I hope to continue updating everyone at home on my whereabouts!

I won't say just yet where I will be going (you may have seen a hint here), but here are a few clues! Talk to you soon!


Tuesday, July 15, 2014

My Favorites

I have seen post after post of celebrities detailing their favorite things and while some may argue that I am not a celebrity (try telling that to my fur babies), I've decided in the interest of un-original content to provide my 10 favorite things. Enjoy!

My Favorites

1. Ray-Ban aviator sunglasses -These are so light and easy to wear and they compliment every outfit, from dressy to running to the store sans makeup-they always work! 

2. NYX lip gloss -This gloss goes on so buttery smooth, costs $5, and is cruelty-free. You just can't go wrong! 

3. Michael kors bracelet -I switch between gold and silver all the time and I never have to worry about this watch matching my other choices-it always does!
4. Bocce Bakery The Big Apple Pie Dog Treats -My pups LOVE these treats! They're made with organic ingredients in Brooklyn, NY and come in fun flavors! Bonus: they're the perfect amount of crunch for pups with little teeth!

5. Sodastream soda machine -I drink between 4 and 5 liters of seltzer per day and this soda maker is a LIFE saver! This is our most used bridal shower gift that we received!

6. Opi nail polish -OPI has the best colors and they wear so nicely! (They're cruelty-free too!)

7. J.Crew boyfriend jeans -I live in these jeans, I get so upset every time I remember that they are not office appropriate. 

8. Gap Ribbed Tank 2 Pack - black -These cotton tanks technically belong to my husband but are perfect for yoga class and hanging around the house. 

9. Tiffany Co sterling silver jewelry -I picked this bracelet out on a visit to the Tiffany flagship and have not taken it off since I received it as a Christmas gift two weeks later. 
 Women's Bracelets - Designer Bracelets for Women - David Yurman - My husband gave this bracelet to me for my 19th birthday and I wear it Every.Single.Day. I felt so out of sorts when I took it off for our wedding day. 

10. Kindle Keyboard with Wi-Fi, 6" E Ink Display -My Kindle is one of the best gifts I have ever received! I LOVE to read and this makes it so easy to do so, wherever I am!

Monday, July 14, 2014

Shelter Co.

I was flipping through the most recent issue of Domino magazine when I landed upon an editorial featuring Shelter Co. Shelter Co. (SC) is a company that offers a luxury camping (aka glamping) experience. They provide everything you would need to host a few friends or an entire weekend in the outdoors of California. SC aims to provide its clients with all the comforts of home in an outdoor setting, reminiscent of summer camp.

With tents starting at $750 per weekend with a minimum of $2,000, this camping trip feels like a real vacation at a fraction of the price-flights alone to Europe for 2 people will set you back at least $2,000. SC offers real mattresses, 400 thread count sheets, and bed side tables standard with all tents. In addition to all that you can choose to add an outdoor movie theater, showers, restrooms, full catering services, dog tents, and organic toiletries. All I have to say about that is, why would my dogs need their own tent?

Looking at me, I'm not the type of person you would normally peg as a camper, but I actually love it. When I was younger, my whole family would pile into my dad's truck. We brought a 13'' TV for my little brother, both of the family dogs (a mastiff and a great dane), and anything else that we could fit in there and I loved it! My husband grew up the same way-his parents are the proud owners of what is lovingly referred to as the "Canvas Condo". I definitely prefer the nicer things in life, but sometimes what you really need is to get back to basics and read a book in the woods while sipping on a drink. We are hoping to spend this Labor Day camping with my in-laws and our pups. We aren't sure how they'll handle being around tons of kids and other dogs (triggers for 10 minute bark sessions), but there is only one way to see how they'll do . . .

Thursday, July 10, 2014

The Incredible, Edible

Since changing my diet, I've found that I'm craving foods that I NEVER before craved. Eggs, goat/Gorgonzola cheese, spinach, avocados, apples, bananas, and coconut are never far from my mind or my stomach. At this point, eggs have pushed coconuts out of the top position on my crave list and I cannot get enough of them. We recently decided to move from 12 to 18 egg cartons. You should also know that my husband hardly eats eggs anymore, so those little sunnies are all for me! I've written this post in the hopes that it will inspire others to eat more eggs and share recipes with me.

I'll go first, here are some recipes that I need to make ASAP. Now it's your turn to tell me your favorite ways to enjoy eggs! ( I strongly suggest frying yours in some bacon fat-makes a world of difference)!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

FRENDS x BaubleBar

"Obsessed" is not even the word here, "dying for" is more like it! My life has no meaning until these black headphones are mine! #wah

Whimsey Box's Gold Leaf DIY

Whimsey Box is like many other subscription boxes out there. Once per month, you receive a box in the mail with an unknown thing inside that causes extreme delight and creativity. Whimsey Box offers beginner/intermediate craft projects for $15 per month. This Valentine's Day, my husband went against my usual wishes and gave me a subscription to Whimsey Box, instead of my usual preference of jewelry. I was so thrilled that he decided to take a chance! My original 3 month subscription ended in April and I immediately signed up for another 3 months. So far, I have learned calligraphy, found the recipe for my beloved  Honey Lavendar body scrub, and worked with Gold Leaf for the first time!

I can tell you this, I consider myself pretty crafty, so I find most of the projects easy to execute. I feel that most of the projects are easy to execute and can be picked up rather quickly by crafting noobs. This was my first time working with gold leaf and it brought to mind a little tidbit that my high school art teacher left me with. She despised loose glitter and deemed it the "herpes of the craft world". Well, Pavese, I'm sorry to disagree but I strongly feel that gold leaf is the herpes of the craft world, but it looks damn good on nearly everything!

When you open your box, you find it tied in a colorful ribbon and the instructions are printed on a 5x7 piece of art!

Everything you need to complete your craft is contained in the box!

I chose to paint my wooden frame first with Martha Stewart all surface paint.

After painting, I had to brush adhesive onto the frame, allow it to dry, and then cover it with the foil. This proved to be the most time consuming, tedious process on the planet, but I really love my frame now! After applying the leafing, I brushed the entire frame with a sealant and allowed it to dry before popping my new fave picture inside. 

Monday, July 7, 2014


On July 1st, I realized it had been 2 years to the day since our wedding and that Bed Bath and Beyond would be purging our registry from their system. It was a bit upsetting for me to lose another little piece of the time leading up to our wedding. To console myself, I began a Williams-Sonoma registry for our future home (Sept 1, 2018). It's important for you to know that we have no immediate plans to purchase a home-just to give you an idea of the level of crazy you are dealing with here. While making said dream registry (found here), I was throwing everything under the sun into this registry-hello wine fridge, pizza maker, and all-clad 15 pc set. I stumbled up Agrarian (definition: rural; agricultural), which offers really cute, giftable kits and sets. In addition to adding most of them to my registry, I found a few that I'd like to purchase in the short term!

These kits are a really fun, easy way to give someone an experience without breaking the bank and wondering if they will resent you for making them leave the house!