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So I Pulled The Oil…

April 19, 2014

Or, I guess technically, the oil pulled me. If you haven’t heard about oil pulling yet then, congratulations! I’m happy that you’ve finally emerged from under your rock. You seem like a nice person and it’s good to have you walking around in public like the rest of us.

Here’s the readers digest version: Oil pulling is an age old practice of swishing some sort of cold pressed oil in your mouth with the hopes that it is drawing out toxins. If you want more info about the history of it and procedures, etc check out: The Skinny Confidential’s blog post on it or, if want the crunchy granola take on things, look at OilPulling.com.

After doing some thorough reading the other night, I brought my husband up to speed on this new trend. Convo went something like this:

Me: “So, there’s this new crazy thing called oil pulling”

Husband: “What is that?”

Me: “Blahblahblah”

Husband: “Uhh…so are you going to try it?”

Me: “Oh totally”

And I tried it. And it wasn’t as easy as it sounds. Yeah sure, it sounds easy…just put some cold pressed oil (most people use coconut oil) in your mouth for 15 minutes and there you go. And then there’s the gag reflex. How could we forget about that? Really, this would all be super easy without that little piece.

So, there are two rules to pulling oil: 1) Don’t spit out the oil in a drain and 2) Don’t swallow.

I heard that people will pull while they are in the shower and getting ready, so I thought I’d try it like that. I figured that if the whole pulling thing was super disgusting, at least I would distracted by the ritual of, I don’t know, shaving my legs. This idea was good in theory. I got in the shower and lasted about 3 minutes before my gag reflex freaked out and coconut oil went EVERYWHERE. Violation rule number 1. (side note: if this happens to you, please be very careful as the bathtub floor will be super slick <read: dangerous>) I had to get out immediately and brush my teeth. The oil texture was terrible.

Ok, so huge failure.

I don’t take defeat well, so after showering I was ready to try it again (maybe I’m just a glutton for punishment). I’m pretty convinced this is a whole mind over matter thing (which, apparently, my vanity wasn’t strong enough to conquer) so I decided to mentally get past the whole texture thing. I added the tiniest amount of mouthwash to the tiniest amount of coconut oil and then convinced myself that this was some sort of new mouthwash. And it worked for about 5 minutes before I succumbed to the gag. At this rate I’ll be able to swish for 15 minutes in like, oh, several months.

Why am I telling you this? Partly because I want you to feel normal if you are struggling with this newest holistic fad. Partly because I feel like it’s just a hilarious story. At any rate, hope you enjoyed. :)

xoxo,

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Ps. I’m on cake two in three days, so stay tuned for pictures. :):):)

Personality Test Time

April 14, 2014

What Color is This?:

(For lack of sounding really creepy) I can tell a lot about you from how you answer that question. For some odd reason or another I decided, during a long run the other day, that most all people can be categorized into three main groups based on their answer to this question.

Chances are that you answered the above question in one of three ways:

The color is:

1) Beige.

2) Champagne.

3) Crème with undertones of yellow and sierra.

Which one were you?

If you said…

1) Beige…you are probably most of America (ie: normal). You see things as they are and, for you, this color is always beige. You are called ‘boring’ by the people in group 2, but hey, at least you have some sort of grip on reality. Without beiges in the world, functioning would probably cease to exist.

2) Champagne…you see what you want to see. You don’t look through rose colored glasses, you look through glasses of rosè. You are (at times) disconnected from reality, but seeing as you’re always having a good time and all, you really don’t care. If it weren’t for champagnes, or at the very least champagne moments, you wouldn’t own those 5 inch studded stilettos in your closet.

3) Crème with undertones of yellow and sierra…you probably spent too much time in art school. You should really get out and talk to normal people (ie: beiges). However, without these people, we wouldn’t have anyone working at Pantone (read: vital).

Obviously, I’m no Myers or Briggs, but it’s always fun to play these games.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I think I’ll open a bottle of wine and eat Jelly Beans for dinner and nestle into group number two.

xoxo,

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Peter Pilotto for Target

April 9, 2014

It’s early February of this year on a Tuesday, and I am making phone calls to every Target in the Buffalo area:

Target Employee: “Thanks for calling Target, how can we help you today?”

Me: “Yeah, I was wondering if your store will be carrying the Peter Pilotto collection coming out on Sunday”

***Long pause***

Target Employee: “Uhhh, let me see. How do you spell that?”

Me: ***thinking- ‘this is not good’*** gives spelling…waits 5 mins for employee to collect information***

Target Employee: “We aren’t carrying it, but the Target by the Galleria is.”

I show up to the Target by the Galleria at exactly 7:55 am on Sunday morning. I’ve driven about 45 minutes and I’m ready to put up a fight for my size. However, judging by the people in the parking lot, I don’t think fighting will be necessary. There are three other cars. Two have men in them (side note: what man waits outside Target at 8am for them to open?) and the other has an overweight lady (ie: not a size competition for me). I guess there is some sort of a bonus for living in Buffalo, NY.

8am: I am in the doors.

8:15am: I have pretty much every piece of the collection in my cart and I’m trying not to hyperventilate at the awesomeness of it all. No one else is shopping…at all…anywhere in the store. Target employees are staring at me like I’m a crazy person.

8:35am: Entire contents of cart have been tried on (that takes a heck of a lot of time when you are only doing 6 pieces at a time), modeled extensively, and had their fate decided.

8:45am: Damage to bank account complete. I’m on the way back home. Side note: there is now one other person looking at the collection. She is my size. I feel like I need to go up and apologize for buying every single garment in my size (there was only one of that size stocked).

A month later whatever was left of the collection was on clearance. I personally think that this was the most underappreciated collection that has ever graced the Target Designer racks. You don’t even have to know who Peter Pilotto is (see aforementioned Target Employee) to appreciate how well everything goes together. In honor, I did a little fashion show playing around with some of the many combinations you can create with these pieces.

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I have a new ‘dress over skirt’ obsession. See above and below picture.

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Those sunglasses!!! Genius.

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Are you ready for this….that top, is a crop top RASHGUARD. ***swoon***

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I wore this skirt and the long sleeve rashguard with my bathing suit under it to lunch with the inlaws and then straight to the beach. Functionality reigns.

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Jacques is so en vouge with his black and white.

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There’s prim and proper, and then there’s this whole casual look to the collection. These woven super low-rise pants are incredible.

 

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Backless rashguard, tank top, skirt.

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Skin show

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The ultimate casual look.

 

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Knit dress, tank top, button down woven dress (tied up at waist in first picture)

And that is just the beginning. If you missed out on this collection, then you really really missed out. There are still some items available (for clearance!) on the Target’s website. Just know that not all things shown are still available in all sizes. I think the best part of the collection was how easy it lends to mixing and matching. I actually ended up buying more separates than dresses because you can do so much incredible styling to create different looks, including ones that look just like dresses.

Thank you Peter for doing this service to humanity.

XOXO,

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Barstool Brainstorming

April 2, 2014

So, while you’ve been going about your week doing your thing (solving world peace, closing big accounts, making great sales) I’ve been thinking about barstools. We recently just moved, and actually have a legit breakfast bar which, in turn, lead me to assess barstools for lengthy periods of time. Here are a few ruminations I’ve come to:

  1. It’s nice when barstools have backs. Yes, you can have really cool backless barstools (there are tons…) but let’s not forget the root of the word BARstool. If you can’t (almost) immediately recount a time (or several) that you nearly fell off (or maybe just plain fell off) a barstool backwards at a bar during college…you haven’t really lived. With that said, it doesn’t really need to happen again, so for the love of your safety (and the preservation of day drinking) get a barstool that has a back. Here’s an easy guide to how much a back is a good back as shown by Pottery Barn Barstools:

While these are cute, easy to move around, (See point #2) and great for a family (red flag #1) they are probably not 3+ glasses of wine friendly. Proceed with caution.

Now we’re getting somewhere. These are much safer…although, I can’t help but wonder if after a few you wouldn’t slide down off the wicker?

Hayes Tufted Barstool

Maybe it’s because I’m a sit back and relax kind of person…but these have a certain relaxing appeal (not to mention that you have to surpass an intoxication level you should be nowhere near in order to fall out of these.)

2.     Barstools should be easy to move. Case in point…look at all the cool places you can put barstools:

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It’s a beautiful day outside and you want to enjoy your breakfast (read: mimosa) outside, but at the glorious height of your bar. Plus, isn’t it convenient that there is already a footrest all the way around?

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Let’s be real, how do you expect to try on 5 inch stilettos in that little dinky chair? You need an elegant, leather tufted (yes, those are tufts, not rogue spiders) barstool in the corner to lean on.

submersible stool that illuminates, ideal for replicating the swim-up bar experience used in finer resorts. A poolside remote control activates the stool's built-in, waterproof four-color LED array that illuminates the stool for optimal nighttime mood lighting.

I don’t even need to crappily draw in a barstool for this one! Unfortunately, the ones in the picture are no longer available…however…you can always just toss any virtually indestructible (read: metal) barstool into the pool for the night (although…I thought we were trying to get away from the things we would do while drinking in college…). Side note: It’s always a good idea to take aforementioned bar stool out of the pool the next day to prevent rust, etc.

And here are a few of my favorites that I’ve rounded up  on Pinterest:

Give new life to old furniture, like these old wooden bar stools, with Krylon paint! Tutoral via Honey Bear Lane.Typewriter Bar Stool Makeover on Shabby Creek Cottage at http://www.theshabbycreekcottage.com/2014/01/typewriter-inspired-barstool-makeover.html

all white kitchen | First of all, I love white kitchens and I especially love her ...Unusual two seated bar seat.  Extra small settee elevated to correct height? -

Chinoiserie Barstool - HorchowChinoiserie Barstool outdoor/indoor. Frame made of aluminum. Cushion made of polyester filled with quick-dry foam with polyester fiber. 19"W x 23"D x 49"T. 25 lbs. Imported White Chinoiserie Barstool: 655.00 HCS13_H6T0F Blue Chinoiserie Barstool: 655.00 HCS13_H6T0M Orange Chinoiserie Barstool: 655.00 HCS13_H6T0Rlove the nailhead trim on the stools and I LOVE how the island is shaped to fit 4 stools- such a great use of space!!

They’re kind of all over the place style wise…so it’ll be interesting to see what ends up being ‘the one’.

Happy Wednesday!

xoxox

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ps. All of the Pinterest barstools can be found here.

Let’s Talk Shoes

March 26, 2014

Yeah, that’s right. I disappear for a month or two (confession: I have no idea what month it is currently) and then I come swinging back into your (blog) life gushing about my new latest shoe love. In some ways, I feel like a really bad boyfriend. So…let’s make up over shoes?

At any rate, check out what I stayed up dreaming up last night: Neutral Mule Sandals. I was contemplating my new spring wardrobe and no shoes (of course) seemed right for all the fabulous outfits I had planned. Ironically, some version of this came to mind:

Stuart Weitzman Fronton

Seeing as I plucked this picture off Piperlime’s must have shoe list, it probably doesn’t seem very ironic that I would be dreaming about them all night. …except for the fact that I have never liked mules like this. Ever. So here I am, laying in bed, struggling with this strange love-hate feeling towards the perfect final accessory to my spring wardrobe. I resisted the urge to grab my phone and start searching Piperlime (my husband would have been like, oh- you’re doing it again?) for the shoe that I needed so badly but was afraid to actually own. Obviously, my night was pretty dramatic.

Fast forward about 12 hours and I’m sitting at the computer (so much for researching local recycling centers) looking up beauties like this:

 

Vince AddieSteve Madden The Blonde Salad x Steve Madden Tdallas Steven by Steve Madden CittySaint & Libertine Celest

Just go here to find all these shoes. Choosing was difficult, but the fact that I had a sizeable about of Gap Money enabled me to put one of these in the mail for a very nice price. Spoiler alert: it was the bottom left one. Expect an instagram (friedmanleslie) of these puppies in 3-5 business days. :)

Happy Wednesday!

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Fill er up! (cupcakes, that is)

January 30, 2014

It was merely a month ago that a baking fanatic coworker of mine brought in some cupcakes she had made the night before. “You have to try them, they have a surprise,” she cooed. Usually, I like to avoid any sort of  ‘surprises’ in my food. I’m even not crazy about the baby in King Cake (and I have what would be classified as an unhealthy addiction to said cake). Nothing she had ever baked previously had turned out anything less than phenomenal, so I gave it a try ….and now I can’t think about cupcakes the same way.

The surprise was a very simple Oreo cookie placed at the bottom of the cupcake. This wasn’t a fancy ‘injecting truffles into the center’ sort of cupcake situation, but a very simple addition. I honestly didn’t think much about the cupcakes until a few weeks later, when I was at the store caving to a chocolate craving and buying cupcake supplies. All of a sudden my option wasn’t just chocolate or vanilla. It was more like chocolate or vanilla…AND what sort of delicious candy bar? I choose a Reese’s Cup to hide in the middle of the petite gateau, but some sort of Twix incorporation was a close runner up.

Maybe I’m just really behind the baking times, but this was a pretty fabulous (not to mention, delicious) revelation. In honor of filled (stuffed?) cupcakes, I’ve sifted through the web for some recipes to pass on to you. Enjoy!

OREO Cupcakes recipe

Oreo Cupcakes. This recipe actually recommends you serve them upside down. They also recommend cool-whip, which I would probably bypass.

Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Cupcakes from CrazyLittleProjects.com There's a Reese's INSIDE!!  #cupcakes #reeses

Reese’s Cupcakes. This blogger stuffed small Reese’s into the center of the cupcake. I have also found that a full size Reese’s actually fits perfectly right in the middle if you lay it horizontally.

Twix Cupcakes

Twix cupcakes. Twix happens to be my favorite, so these are definitely next on my list.

Mini candy bars and rolos are also a happy surprise. Recipe here.

York Peppermint Patty Cupcakes. I’m not the biggest fan of mint with my chocolate, but these sound so delicious.

Want more recipes? Pinterest is just teeming with them (surprise, surprise)…just search for ‘candy bar cupcakes’.

Happy Baking!

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“I Have a Dream…

January 20, 2014

…That one day children of all ethnicities will grow up and work side by side in the fashion industry. Little white girls will design and sew dresses for little black girls and little black girls will walk the runway hand in hand with their white counterparts…”

For the record, the above quote is where Martin Luther King Jr. was going with his original “I have a dream” speech. I’m pretty sure he was envisioning a future CFDA meeting complete with Ron Anderson and David Rees of Ten Thousand Things sitting next to each other gathering ideas for the next new thing in fashion.

In honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, I want to give a shout out (in no particular order) to three of the coolest ladies in the fashion industry. And, yes, in case you are wondering- I have chosen all ladies. There are plenty of kickin’ chicken men out there too, but I couldn’t have a blog post turned epic novel.

 

Tracy Reese

Inset ShiftBack Belt Frock

Ms. Reese has been kicking serious booty since debuting her line 1996 and it’s obvious why. She knows that women want easy pieces to wear that are both unique and sexy without looking outlandish or unlady like. She’s also a member of the board of directors of the CFDA. (Can we say: powerhouse?)

Iman (Mohamed Abdulmajid)

This supermodel, philanthropist, actress, and business woman is so famous she totally gets by with having a one word name (think: cher). If you’ve never heard of Iman, or what she’s done as far as crushing the stereotypes of the ditzy supermodel, go read her wikipedia page…now: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iman_(model). If she’s not a role model, I don’t know who is!

Michelle Obama

Okay, she’s not really in the fashion industry per se, but she has made quite the influence on it. Politics aside, Mrs. Obama is not only smart, but she’s the best dressing first lady we’ve had in years. Where do I even start with the impact she has made? I’ll hit on my three favorite points about her: 1) Your appearance matters and you don’t have to buy designer clothes to make a statement. 2) The perfect size is a healthy weight. Being underweight is no more healthy than being fifteen pounds overweight. Everyone has a natural size they hit when they live an active, healthy lifestyle. 3) She has made people who don’t care about fashion actually think about fashion. And that’s not an easy thing to do.

There are so many more influential people I could gush about, but I’ll leave it with those three. Hopefully, no matter what the color combination of your skin is, you will be inspired to live your life to the fullest like these ladies!

Happy MLK day!

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