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Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Lovely Light Layers

I'm having a hard time concentrating on anything today, because all I can think about is where I'll be at approximately 7:07pm tonight. Along with my dad, Aaron and I will be at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City cheering on the Royals for Game 1 of the World Series!! I'd say look for me on TV, but I'll be way up in the stands, almost as far up as you can go. Despite the ridiculous prices (even for our far-away seats) Aaron and I decided that we had to go. Christmas in October anyone? 

On a non-baseball note, dressing in layers is one of the best things about fall. Today I have one of my favorite layers, this cargo vest. It's perfect for the kind of weather we've been having, adding just the right amount of warmth in the cool morning, but not adding too much bulk for the warm afternoon. I know soon enough it will be time to break out the heavy jackets and gloves, but for now I'm embracing the lighter side of layers. 

To me, fall and spring are the most fun, wardrobe-wise. What's your favorite season for getting dressed?

Polka dot chambray: J.Crew Factory (similar) / cargo vest: Old Navy (similar) / navy cords: Gap / leopard flats: Dr. Scholl's via DSW

Linking up my "Lovely Layers" with The Creative Closet

Monday, October 20, 2014

Navy Print Sweater 2 Ways

So far this fall, I've been gravitating towards comfort more than anything else. I'm starting to think I should have added more pants and fewer pencil skirts to my fall capsule, but who knows what the next month or so will bring. This navy print cardigan adds some comfort and coziness to any look. I wore it on Friday with a simple gray tee and skinny jeans, and also last winter with a striped blouse and red pants.

What style have you been drawn to lately? 

The Inspiration Monday picture at Two Birds inspired my look; since most of the elements are neutrals, I added red flats for some color. Something about this sweater makes me want to pair it with red I guess. 

Sweater: Loft (similar style) / gray t-shirt: Target (similar) / skinny jeans: Gap / necklace: Etsy / red flats: Gap Outlet (similar)

Linking up to Inspiration Monday and Mix it Mondays

Friday, October 17, 2014

Weekly Eats: Reliable Recipes and Curve-balls

Each week when I'm planning my menu, I try to find recipes I know we will like (or recipes that we already know we like) and then throw in at least one curve-ball recipe. This week my curve-ball was butternut squash soup, but even if that one wasn't a hit (which it was, at least for Aaron) I knew my boys would be happy with things like roasted chicken with mashed potatoes and buffalo chicken pizza. 

Clockwise from top right: 

1. Parmesan Garlic Chicken from Iowa Girl Eats with mashed potatoes and roasted asparagus. Aaron actually made the chicken, and it turned out perfectly! It's coated in an olive oil-garlic-parmesan paste and roasted in the oven. I used bone-in chicken breasts, and cooked them for a little longer than the recipe (which uses boneless chicken) suggests.  No gamble here, I knew it would be a winner.

2. Smoked Gruyere Butternut Soup with Spicy Chickpeas from How Sweet it is. I've been wanting to try this recipe since I came across it a few weeks ago. I'm always looking for new ways to prepare vegetables, since they're not always a household favorite. Putting butternut squash into a soup and adding cheese (I used aged cheddar instead) and crispy chickpeas, well, how can you go wrong with that? 

3. Buffalo Chicken Flat-bread Pizza from Tasty Kitchen. For this recipe, I shredded leftover roasted chicken from earlier in the week. This was so easy to throw together--just melt butter and hot sauce for the "pizza sauce" and top with chicken and monterey jack cheese. Chicken wings meet pizza...yum.

Not pictured, but worth mentioning: Tex Mex Meatballs in a Chipotle-Tomato Sauce from Homesick Texan. What is it with me and not remembering to photograph meatballs? Maybe I just love them so much I can't wait to dive in. Anyway, these were delicious, and they even have some sneaky zucchini in there! Jona didn't even try to feed this one to Ellie, which is saying something nowadays. (We've entered the picky/stubborn/I'd-rather-play-with-my-food-than-eat-it stage, I'm afraid.)

What's for dinner for you tonight? 

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Easy Pumpkin Project

Like I mentioned yesterday, I'm always late (or a no-show) to the Halloween decorating game. This year I decided to get crafty so I could at least have a Halloween-ready table. When I saw this cute Boo Pumpkins project at Six Sisters' Stuff and then saw how easy it was to make, I was sold. 

Since we were at the pumpkin patch this weekend anyway, I grabbed a few small ones for this project. Unfortunately, all the small pumpkins were still green, so they look a bit like watermelons with weird stems. These Pumpkin-melons got a Halloween makeover with B-O-O spelled out using gold brad fasteners and orange plaid ribbon bows. I have to say, even with non-pumkiny-pumpkins, I love how this DIY turned out! If you need a fast, easy Halloween project, this is a good one. 

I'm linking up to In Residence for the Pin to Present linkup. Be sure to check out what other bloggers are pinning and doing!

And on a completely unrelated note...HOLY MOLY WE'RE GOING TO THE WORLD SERIES!!! This is unreal, people. 

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Midweek Pick-Me-Ups: October

We're already halfway through October; this month has gone fast! Here are a few things (other than the Royals winning the first 3 games of the ALCS of course! #beroyal ) making me smile right now.

1. Pumpkin Time. Over the weekend we visited Louisburg Cider Mill and Pumpkin Patch. It was Jona's first time there, and clearly, he loved it. No, this picture is deceiving because he actually did have fun, he just doesn't appreciate it when I set him down for a picture and walk away. We drank apple cider, ate freshly-made donuts, and picked out our perfect pumpkins from the patch. If you're in the Kansas City area, it's definitely worth a visit! 

2. S'mores Bars. What do you get when you combine chocolate chip cookie dough, an ENTIRE jar of marshmallow fluff, and 3 Hershey bars? Some seriously delicious s'mores bars, that's what! They may not look the prettiest, but who needs pretty when you're ooey, gooey, and chocolaty? They're quick and easy to make too--even with homemade chocolate chip cookie dough (which you could totally cheat on) I got these babies in the oven in one nap time, with time to spare! 

3. Fall boots. When I put it together in September, I hesitated to add my brown riding boots to my fall capsule. It was so warm then that I wasn't prepared for boots season yet. Well let me tell you, I'm prepared now. They're in. For some inspiration, I took a walk down (blogging) memory lane to see how I styled them in the past. These boots sure have gotten a lot of wear over the past few years!

4. Halloween Decor. I always have good intentions when it comes to decorating for Halloween, but the reality is I never get around to it. I'm too cheap to buy lots of decorations, but I don't have time to make them. Sob story, I know. Not this year though! Tomorrow I'll share what I made with you, but here's a sneak peek. 

5. Pattern Play.  Stripes plus one pattern is good, but stripes plus two patterns!? I think I blew my own mind here. I know I was down on neutrals yesterday, but today we're back to being BFFs. Neutrals are what make this print mix look cohesive rather than crazy. And check out my mini-print-mixer in his stripes and camo. Stud-muffin in the making, am I right? 

What's making you smile this week?

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Color Strikes Back

I have a lot of neutrals in my fall capsule wardrobe, which overall I'm pretty happy with. They're very mix- and match-able, and easy to brighten up with a bold accessory or two. But sometimes, I need an outfit that's dominated by color. Color can be such a mood-booster, don't you think? 

I actually got the idea for this look from another blogger, Jacquelyn of Just Jacq. We were commenting back and forth about our fall capsules, and she suggested I try this look but with my sleeveless striped blouse. Since it's been cool out, I switched it out for one with sleeves, but I love how it turned out! I get more inspiration from other bloggers than I do anywhere else, I swear. 

What are your favorite mood-boosting colors? 

Striped shirt: Ann Taylor Factory (similar) / turquoise pencil skirt: The Limited (similar) / necklace: jewelry shop in Paris (love this bold one!) / pink pumps: Nine West

Monday, October 13, 2014

Gray Moto Jacket Then and Now

The older I get, the more I love fall. I've always liked fall, but it never meant anything special to me other than going back to school (which technically happened in the summer) and sweater weather. However, more and more I find fall to be such a comforting season. I love being cozy indoors when it's cool out, and spending time cooking and baking in a warm kitchen. This weekend definitely felt very "fall", with a trip to a pumpkin patch as well as a dinner of butternut squash soup.

Today I'm remixing one of my favorite fall wardrobe items: this gray moto jacket. I wore it last year at the end of winter (wasn't Jona so little?) layered with a scarf.

It was chilly over the weekend, but on a warmer day last week I was able to wear a dress with bare legs and not freeze. I styled this look for Inspiration Monday at Two Birds, but my look is pretty different from the inspiration. Printed pants are on my list of things I'd like to possibly try for next season, but for now I know I'll get plenty of mileage out of this printed shirt-dress.

Moto jacket: Loft (similar) / printed shirt-dress: Ann Taylor Factory (pretty feather print) / snakeskin flats: Sam & Libby for Target (similar)

Linking up to Inspiration Monday and Mix it Mondays