Monday, April 30, 2012

Weekly Blogosphere Crush

    Weekly round-up from FWB...with a little extra commentary from yours truly.

    I just…there are no words…

near my old stomping grounds on avenue A

    I struggle with it…so I LIVE for a make-up tutorial…

i posted about you rebel lite here - love it!

           This boutique in Columbus, OH is my addiction…and loving this glam/casual pairing!

Can't wait to visit fwb and look for goodies here!

       Chicago is my home away from home (I lived there for 6 years…and was lucky enough to spend       some of that time living with our one and only).  SO crushing on the show "House of Consignment" filmed in Chicago...and the fact that this is a real business with real employees where she makes real money!
and that means more production jobs for our little production community!  woohoo!

Friday, April 27, 2012

Vanessa Mooney

Have you guys seen a lot of pics of these Vanessa Mooney moccasins lately?  Love the black and tan ones.  Have I been living under a rock or do you all know about her jewelry line?  You can see more of it at Endless.  Love the aztec / southwestern inspired bracelets and necklaces.

Linking up with Kori for Fashion Fridays!

Yesterday, a nice surprise came from my friend , the city boy,  over at Life Through Preppy Glasses:  The Liebster Blog Award!  His blog is so fun and I am thrilled that he thought of Goodies & Besties for this.  And now I get to pass on this award to some of my besties.   I may be breaking the rules a bit, as I don't know how many followers some of these great blogs have, but let's just go with it!  All are wonderful spaces written by beautiful people with great ideas.

To keep this going:
Now, if you would like to accept this award you must: 
1. Link back to the person who gave this to you
2. Post the award to your blog
3. Give the award to five bloggers with less that 200 followers 
4. Leave a comment on the blogs you nominated letting them know they have received the award

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Studio 53

I stumbled across the cutest (and smallest) antique/art studio shop in Delavan, Wisconsin a few weeks ago.  And it just happens to be for sale.  We bumped into the owner as he walked out of his house while I had my nose pressed against the window of his little shop (the shop was closed and I was just trying to get a peak).  Studio 53 is a work/create/living space all in one with the shop in the front, art loft studio in the back and three bedroom house to the right.  I dream about leaving the city and going to live on a farm, but I think this would be the perfect little compromise - loft space in a small town, kids jumping into the nearby lake via rope swings, hitting the local coffee shop on a daily basis - well, they would serve better coffee, of course - in my dream - and we would bike everywhere as a family (if I actually liked to bike).  Ok, see, grass isn't always greener, but Studio 53 is pretty darn cute.  Don't you think?


Monday, April 23, 2012

As Gold as it Gets


I attended the Hugo Awards last week, which is the Chicago Film Festival's television award show.  Kelsey Grammer was winner of the Career Achievement Award and was at the event to accept his award.  But the real star of the show was the venue itself.  Designed by a team led by Jeanne Gang of Studio Gang Architects, the AQUA building is the tallest in the world to have a woman as lead architect.  The exterior is beautiful and the interior is even more stunning.  It's like being inside a jewelry box, surrounded by gems.

gold flames
gold toes
gold walls
gold tea lights
built into the surface of the table

let me quote what my friend said when she walked into the bathroom, "i feel like we stepped into heaven."
as gold as it gets - Essie

Similar jackets
(a splurge version and attainable version)

AllSaints jacket
Splurge:  AllSaints jacket

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

"Mom is an artist, not like Dad who can draw, but like someone who arts themselves....because she is fancy"

What perceptive words for a four year old.  Yeah, I'm totally bragging again.  Although, everyday is not a fancy day, she has applauded my efforts to dress "up" on occasion.  This coming from a girl who was overly delighted one afternoon when I told her I was going to change out of my sweatpants before going to the store.  She doesn't like anything of the "sweat" kind and especially nothing black or gray, as she labels those colors as "sad".  This describes half my wardrobe, with "sweat" and black being the key items, so when I put on a skirt or something of color, she is first to notice.  And the thing is, she's right.  Black and gray can be sad colors.  And why not have a little fun getting dressed.  In her world, every day is dress up.  Why shouldn't mine?

I realized that this outfit is entirely thrifted, sans the shoes!  Dawn would be proud.

I often quote my children in the blog because I like looking back and remembering what they said!  Now, there is an app for that.  Check out Bacon Mouth, a new app for keeping tracking of all the funny and amazing things kids say.  Bacon Mouth is also a supporter of GnB.  Check it out!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

easy summer sneaks

my new favorite summer kicks.  
when joanna posted that "bensimon are french girl's converse "- she had me at french AND converse.
a cross between tom's and keds, they are easy throw on shoes.
admittedly, they have a lot of flaws where the rubber meets canvas, but maybe that adds to their charm.
and they are kinda over priced.
but, you know what, i am loving them and thinking about pair #2

and they come in a million styles and colors.  i got basic boring black, but look at all the awesome shades!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Fresh Flavor, Friends & Fun

My friend made this amazingly fresh and flavorful salad over the weekend.

The best part is that all the flavor comes directly from the fresh ingredients and there is no oil or any sort of dressing.

I think it was equal parts chopped ingredients (pretty much what you see):

Avocado, Tomatoes (strained), Mango, White Onion, Cilantro

The salad accompanied a meal of grilled pork chops and grilled vegetables.  My other friend grilled the vegetables to just the right amount of crisp in this must have vegetable grilling basket.

Weber Style Professional GradeVegetable Basket
Perfect Father's Day Gift for the bbq lover, might I add.

Lovely weekend spent with lovely friends, fresh food, and happy kids.

Here's to kicking off the summer season (even if a little bit early).

Friday, April 13, 2012


I forever be the girl who is looking for a deal.  A diamond in the rough in a discount clothing bin.  It's just who I am.  It may go way back to my grandmother's Sunday paper coupon clipping, which was passed down to my mother, which, with evolution, has turned into me spending quite a bit of time this week at Forever21. I will forever appreciate making more of something that was labeled as less.

Special thanks to my amazing friend and photographer, Brian, for snapping these photos on the fly!
Check out his tumblr space!

Forever 21 bag $34.00
Thrifted flair jeans
10yr old Banana shoes

Similar shoes and a perfect match for this blouse

Blonde Episodes

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Blogosphere Crush!

My bestie (fwb) is back with some fabulous love from the fashion blogs.  I've inserted my two cents in pink.  She knows me so well.

    I must have this…I do have this.  I do love this.
    Vacation please
    Since I always care how "Sydney Wears It"  A little inspiration for your next trip to the bead store. How easy would it be to make that necklace?

      Is this book about Bestie herself?  Funny, I've been obsessing about this book for a few weeks after seeing that the author had a book release party in Chicago.  Another book stemming from a fabulous blog.  You are going to love the video AND the blog.
      tomboy style book

      Tomboy Style: Beyond the Boundaries of Fashion from pier pictures on Vimeo.
      My little sister is getting married in SF this fall (swoon!)…if I could only look this chic for the trip!  My claim to fame…my hair was also in a bun the day I read this post ;)  She is this chic!



    Tuesday, April 10, 2012


    Vegan-ish Oatmeal Cookies

    I adapted this recipe based on a ten-minute google search of vegan oatmeal cookies.  Admittedly, I did not search for vegan recipes based on health restrictions, but for the mere and indulging fact that I want to eat cookie dough by the spoonfuls without worrying about salmonella poisoning.  How did we survive as children - we licked the spoons, beaters, bowls, everything.  And nothing, not one time did we get sick. So, with knowledge comes vegan cookie recipe searching.  

    I just used ingredients I had on hand.  To make them really vegan, replace milk with soy milk and butter with vegan spread.

      • 1 3/4 cups all purpose flour (use half whole wheat if you prefer)
      • 1 tsp baking soda
      • 1/2 tsp salt
      • 2 cups quick oats
      • 1 cup butter
      • 1/2 cup sugar
      • 1/2 cup milk
      • 3 tablespoons maple agave syrup blend
      • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
      • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
      • 3/4 cup sweetened shredded coconut

      Cookie Directions:

      • 1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees
      • 2. Combine dry ingredients: flour, baking soda, salt and quick oats
      • 3. Cream the butter with the sugar until light and fluffy
      • 4. Beat in the milk, lemon juice and vanilla
      • 5. Mix dry ingredients with the creamed mixture
      • 6. Stir in coconut
      And here is what you do with the leftover dough (if you haven't eaten half of it - like I did)

      Place spoonfuls on ungreased baking sheet and flatten slightly.  Bake for 10-12 minutes @ 375 degrees.

      Friday, April 06, 2012


      I really needed this late afternoon pick me up yesterday

      Which reminded me of this gorgeous easy to pull off inspirational look that my bestie, fwb, spotted this week.
      Another sweater over dress look that doubles your wardrobe options.  Dresses that may be a little too formal for your day turn into casual skirts.  Sweaters that may be collecting dust get a whole new spin!  
      via cupcakesandcashmere

      And if I let you have a glimpse into the rest of my week, you may find out all the fashionable sweatpant combinations I can pull together and I don't want to give away all my secrets.


      Thursday, April 05, 2012

      My Workout

      Lately, my workout has been trifold and includes magazine reading, phone emailing, and kardashian watching all while trying to keep my legs moving on an elliptical.  I know you are probably in awe of my multi-tasking, but it's quite easy when you are only moving at a snail's pace.  On Saturday afternoon, I prepped for another one of my workouts and with Rachel Ray magazine in hand (don't judge, I just started getting this magazine for free), I hightailed  it over to the gym, yawning the whole way there (it's two blocks).  My yawns were so infectious that I probably had close to the whole cardio section with mouths open as I headed over to the bike.  Yep, I chose the bike, not the stand-up pretend you are in a spin class sweat your butt off bike, but the sit back, lounge and put your feet up bike.  I usually don't do the bike so I forgot out the 4 inch tall ledge that separates the bikes from the rest of the cardio machines and I TRIPPED RIGHT OVER IT.  Example one of my workout downward spiral to hitting rock bottom.  Example two:  About 20 minutes into my "workout" I look down and realize that I am still wearing my down jacket AND I have not yet removed my fleece hat!  That's how UNSWEATY I was -  I had been biking for twenty whole minutes and didn't even heat up enough to make me want to remove my down, Patagonia, warm enough for below thirty degree temperatures, JACKET.  This is when I decided that my workouts had hit rock bottom and I must pull myself out of this terrible habit before I have to buy another pair of jeans - in a larger size.

      Sidenote:  I recently picked up a pair of skinny trouser jeans from Old Navy the other day as I really needed a pair of roomier jeans.  I like them at first but quite quickly started doubting them.  So, I asked my daughter the other day if she liked my new jeans.  Her response: "NO"  I asked why and she responded without skipping a beat:  "Because they are too blue."  You know, she is exactly right.  And that is why I cannot buy new jeans - as I feel that I am bordering blindly buying Mom jeans - and just need to fit into the jeans I already own.  The cool ones.  The ones I bought last year, or the years before.

      So, this week I am going to try one of those "barre"fitness classes.  I don't know what to except other than hopefully a little sweat and a little soreness the next day.  Because the only thing that getting sore now are my fingertips (from over texting and page turning).  I am putting this out there - to the universe - in hopes that I will succeed in sticking with a new workout goal of breaking a sweat!

      Golden nails for the Golden Birthday!

      New birthday outfits, because I couldn't pick just one!

      My baby girl is celebrating a birthday today.  She is no longer a baby, but she'll always be my baby.  She has such a strong spirit and point of view for such a little one that I often find myself asking, "what would a thirty-five year old version of LaLa do" in such a such case?

      • Her first word was pillow.
      • She has a sophisticated pallet and eats parm by the chunk, asparagus like candy, enjoys wasabi peas, and is just as addicted as I am to that insanely great trader joe's seaweed snack!
      • She never wears jeans or sweats or fleece pants and only dresses, skirts, leggings, oh, and jeggings for this girl.
      • She adores her bestie big brother and is always watching out for him.
      • She has a heart of gold and it just so happens that her nails are gold too!
      Yes, I am bragging.  Yes, I took her for a birthday manicure.  Yes, I have gold nails too (she picked out the shade)  Yes, she and her little pink leopard boots inspired this blog and she inspires me on a daily basis.  Love her to pieces.

      By the way, shade is Essie "Shifting Power"
      Funny how it can be so elegant and sophisticated yet so sweet and subtle on my little one!

      Monday, April 02, 2012

      "There's a party on my plate" - 3.5 year old

      Making chocolate pancakes + Listing to Pink Martini + Coffee + Happy Kids = Perfect Sunday Morning

      This chocolate pancake recipe was only one google click away from delicious pancakes.  I'll admit that it's pretty much like eating chocolate cake for breakfast, but is that such a bad thing?  No...well, it wasn't, until later that day when 60 Minutes had to go and do a segment which declared SUGAR the new evil of the millennium.  So, being the paranoid worrier that I am, it's now Monday night and I have not had an ounce of anything containing white sugar since these pancakes.  At least they can't take my coffee away - for now.


      • 1 cup all-purpose flour
      • 1/3 cup cocoa powder
      • ¼ cup sugar
      • 1 teaspoon baking soda
      • ½ teaspoon salt
      • ½ teaspoon vanilla
      • 1 cup milk
      • 1 egg, lightly beaten
      • 2 tablespoons melted butter
      • powdered sugar for dusting

      First, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking soda, and salt. Stir it together lightly. Be sure to sift these ingredients well to keep the batter light and the pancakes fluffy. Chocolate pancakes are rich and won’t be as fluffy as traditional pancakes, but sifting will help keep them as fluffy as possible.

      In a small, separate bowl, stir together the vanilla, milk, egg and melted butter until well combined. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir just enough. Sifting the flour beforehand will help minimize lumps, but some lumps are a good sign. It means you didn’t over-mix the batter which will cause chewy pancakes.
      Let the pancake batter rest in the refrigerator while you prepare your pancake griddle. During this resting time, the rest of the lumps will dissolve in the pancakes. 
      When the pan is ready, remove the batter from the refrigerator and pour ¼ cup of batter onto the pan at a time to form pancakes. Do not mix the batter before pouring it on the pan. The batter may be a little thinner than regular pancakes. If it is too thin, try adding a tablespoon of flour. If you are concerned about thin pancakes, only add ¾ cups of milk from the start and add more later on, if necessary.