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Friday Favorites | Last one in July

Happy Friday friends!! Can you even believe that August officially starts tomorrow - crazy! My parents are visiting so we'll be spending a lot of time with them and hopefully cooling off by the pool since it's been uncomfortably hot! I think it's just preparing me for the sweat storm I'm going to be in next week in Charleston! Linking up with Amanda and April to share my favorites from the week! 

Favorite Song

I know the song King has been out for quite some time, but I just heard it again for the first time in a few months and I love it all over again! I dare you to not bop along to it! 

Favorite Look

How Summer perfect did Reese Witherspoon look this week! Fedora, polka dots, white jeans and wedges - she's like a walking fashion blogger! If you didn't love her before - then you will after this post

Favorite DIY

This would be perfect in small spaces when you just don't have the room for a vanity. I would 100% have this in lieu of the dresser that currently has my makeup on it! 

Favorite Summer Night

It was my sister's birthday this week so we celebrated in true New England fashion with a lobster feast! Clearly I didn't get the memo for the laid attire for the night since I came straight from work! 

Favorite Links

Friday Favorite Links
//I have some serious closet envy with Khole Kardashian's entire one dedicated to her workout clothes
//You can still eat healthy on the run at Starbucks - I want salad bowl stat! 
//Under the sink is a mess - but I want to try to organize it very similarly to how I Heart Organizing did hers. 


Hope you all have a wonderful weekend and I'll see you back here Monday for Weekending! 
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Going Green

I was able to wrangle Gary into taking a few photos for me because I'm slightly obsessed with this dress and heels! First let's talk about the dress. I bought this on a whim at Target and sadly it's not available online, but if you are near a Target, then they should still have them in stock. If online is what you what, I was able to find this Wrap Waist Shirt Dress from Target that is made of the same material and has the same fit. It's light enough that it can be worn in the summer heat, but it can easily transition into Fall, which despite the heatwave will be coming.
Let's pause for a moment and talk about the heels - the color I got them in is called Fawn, like a Brown/Gray, but they also come in Black and they are from Ann Taylor. They are currently an extra 50% off which makes them only $35 (might need to purchase them in black because hello that's a steal!! I can't even tell you how comfortable these shoes are! Don't believe me - just ask Kate as she witnessed me trekking from one side of Boston to the other without so much as a wince of pain! 
I also recently turned my Louis Vuitton Speedy into a cross body by adding a leather strap I had from another bag! I figured I'd use it more that way as I like to have my hands free and not carry purses in the crook of my elbow! I was totally right - I've used it so much more over the last two weeks than I have in the last two years! 
Happiness Boutique
Accessories! I decided to go a little heavy on the accessories for this dress! Happiness Boutique sent me two pairs of insanely gorgeous earrings and I couldn't wait to wear them. The Golden Jeweled statement earrings aren't as heavy as you would imagine and small enough that I can wear them to work, but make enough of a statement that they work for a night out! Before they reached out I hadn't heard of the company, but now that I know they exist I'm so happy they're around! With free shipping and a customer reward program - it's going to be hard to stop myself from shopping their site! They are a European company but the shipping was quick and easy and I love that they convert the prices for you into USD so you don't have to worry about doing math! 
Happiness Boutique
They also sent me a pair of these gorgeous colored statement earrings that I hope to break out in Charleston! 

Happy Thursday friends! We're almost to the weekend! 
Happiness Boutique sent me two pairs of earrings in exchange for a review - all opinions are 100% my own. 
Linking up with Annie and Natalie
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Great Buys | Husband Edition

I spend a lot of time talking about the things I've purchased that are amazing buys, but I have to give some credit to my husband because when it comes to functional products he's always buying the most unique things for us! I've rounded up my five favorite things he's bought that in one way or another makes life easier for me! 
Duck Handy Can Opener | Gary knows what a hard time I have opening jars of pretty much anything - well not anymore with this little duck! It's super cute and easy to use and the head can be used to open smaller things or even for twist of wine bottles if they are too hard! 

Toilet Seat Light | When Gary proclaimed that he had bought a toilet seat light my initial thought was I'm not a child I can use the toilet without a night light. But then he explained his reasoning - going to the bathroom in the middle of the night and having to turn any light on is a disruption - this nifty gadget has a sensor to know when you walk in and even lets you know when the toilet seat was left up! I've grown to love it too! 

Remote Control | Before we had this remote we would argue over who had to go turn off the TV in our room - we like to turn the power off completely to save on our electricity. One day Gary came home with this little thing - one part of it plugs into the outlet and then you can program up to 3 different things to turn on and off with one button! Let me tell you - this guy is the best thing to happen to my nightly routine in forever!! I LOVE IT and turning the TV off completely without having to leave my bed makes me a happy lady! 

Hamburger Timer | I think by now you know I love to cook, but I didn't have a proper timer in my kitchen and was always using my phone. Well Gary decided to be cute and order this little hamburger timer for me - I use it every single time I cook, but now I have my eye on the little ice cream cone

Automatic Tea Lights | I like to have candles lit and the house illuminated pretty much year round and we were going through tea lights like it was nothing. Gary outsourced our lighting to these automatic tea lights - we set the times we want them to come on and turn off and never have to worry about lighting anything! 

As you can tell some of these were meant to be gag gifts for me, but in all seriousness they have been some of the best purchases Gary has made for our house. They are small little things that make my life easier and as the saying goes - happy wife, happy life - so he's made sure of that :) 

Does your husband or boyfriend make any questionable purchases you end up loving too?
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Tasty Eats | Parmesan Crusted Tilapia

Before I share this recipe I want to take a moment to wish my sister a very happy birthday! 
It's hard to put into words the bond between sisters, but I'll try! She's my best friend, the person I call when I need advice and the one I can count on for giving me her honest opinion. She's the best mommy in the world (only second to our own mother) and she is the definition of a strong woman! I am incredibly proud to have a sister that rocks it in all facets of life - especially professionally - she was just on CNBC - pretty amazing! Love you more than I can ever put into words Yana, can't wait to celebrate with you tonight! 
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Onto the recipe! I have had this Parmesan crusted tilapia recipe for months now and this weekend we were able to finally make it. I modified the original recipe just a bit to add some of the ingredients we had on hand, but we stayed very true to the original and it was delicious. I know there are a few people who aren't "fish" people, and this would be just as amazing with chicken! 
Parmesan Crusted Tilapia with Tomato-Basil Cream Sauce

What You'll Need

  1. 4 cloves of garlic - finely chopped
  2. 1 shallot - finely chopped
  3. 1 package of cherry tomatoes
  4. ¾ cup of cream
  5. handful of basil leaves
  6. one small onion - finely chopped
  7. 4 tilapia fillets 
  8. ½ cup of flour
  9. 2 eggs beaten
  10. 1 cup parmesean cheese
  11. 1 cup breadcrumbs
  12. garlic powder
  13. olive oil

Directions

  1. Rinse and pat dry the tilapia fillets, season with garlic salt and pepper - put off to the side on a separate plate. 
  2. Heat olive oil in a small skillet and add in garlic, onions and shallot - stir and cook for 2 min. Add the cherry tomatoes in and cook for another 2 minutes. Then add the cream and set a timer for 15 minutes so that your sauce can thicken. Make sure your heat is on medium low and if it boils that's OK. 
  3. In another larger skillet, pour oil to cover the bottom of the skillet.
  4. Get ready to have an assembly line created! 
    Parmesan Crusted Tilapia with Tomato-Basil Cream Sauce
  5. In a bowl or a plate, have your flour ready and also have a separate bowl or plate for the whipped eggs. 
  6. In a bowl or plate, combine Parmesan, breadcrumbs and a little garlic powder
  7. Dip the tilapia in the flour first, then coat in the egg and press it into the breadcrumb/Parmesan mixture.
  8. Place on the heated skillet and cook for 3-4 minutes per side. I tend to over cook and let each side cook for about 5 mins. 
  9. While the fish is cooking chop up your fresh basil (finely) and add it into the sauce and stir. 
Parmesan Crusted Tilapia with Tomato-Basil Cream Sauce

One thing to note is if your Tilapia fillets are on the larger side - you just repeat the steps until you've cooked them all. We had really large fillets and enough for leftovers! 

I served this with oven roasted asparagus and carrots - just a little dab of olive oil, garlic and pepper to taste and popped in the oven for 10-12 minutes! 

As I mentioned if you're not a fan of fish this can be easily made with chicken as a substitute

All that's left is to enjoy! 
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Weekending & A Giveaway

Happy Monday friends! I was pretty excited for this past weekend for a few reasons - getting to meet a blog friend for the first time, going to the brand new City Target that opened and spending the day with my oldest niece celebrating her birthday - happy to report everything was checked off the list! Before the weekend started I was able to check out the rooftop pool and bar at the Colonnade Hotel in Boston. 
I along with a few other bloggers were treated to a taste of the brand new food and cocktail menus. Sadly I didn't get any pictures of the views, but that's because I was busy stuffing my face with the incredible food - including the most delicious lobster rolls I've had this summer!! Chef Nick Calias is a genius and the presentation of the food was as good as it tasted! 
Mini hot dogs and mini lobster rolls - you can imagine which ones I hit up first! The swordfish tacos were amazing and the presentation of the BBQ Shrimp was so fun! I can't wait to go back! 
I've tweeted my excitement that City Target is finally open in Fenway and Gary totally went along for the ride on Friday night! It's still got that new Target smell and the best part is that it's a grocery store and they sell alcohol, which is nearly impossible to find in any Massachusetts store!

Of course I bought a ton of things I didn't need like these mini champagne bottles and finally being able to find the mini Sofia cans for my bar cart! Yes everything was pink and that wasn't planned! 
My oldest niece turned 10 last week and all she really wanted for her birthday was to spend one on one time together - of course I obliged and took her for a little pampering! 
We had the best time getting her nails done, chatting away during lunch and taking her to Target to pick out something she had her eye on - I'd also like to point out the fishtail braid done by yours truly! 
That night we met up with Kate and her husband for dinner and some drinks!! I suggested Rosa Mexicano since I know how much they love Mexican food! It felt like meeting up with an old friend, we picked up as if we had just seen each other last weekend and that is the part of blogging that I love - so many new friends! 
I was so excited to show them  The Envoy Hotel roof top bar because it really does have some of the best views of Boston's skyline! 

If you have a visit planned to Boston this is a must visit stop! 
Sunday can be described in two words - clean & eat...and then shop to get office supplies that you don't need! I also made an incredible recipe that I can't wait to share with you tomorrow! But enough about the weekend and let's get to a giveaway this Monday! I've teamed up with some great ladies and one lucky winner will get a pair of these gorgeous Kendra Scott Danielle Earrings! This giveaway is open to international residents as well! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Hope you all have a wonderful start to your week and link up below to share your weekends with us! 
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Friday Favorites Round Up

Happy Friday friends! Has this week felt long or what?! I'm so excited to be linking up with Amanda and April, especially since I wasn't able to share my favorites last week! I'm also really excited to finally meet Kate this weekend since she's going to be here for just one night! Here are some of my favorites this week! 

Favorite Recipe

I like lettuce wraps, but struggle with what to put in them - that was until I found this recipe for Baked Asian Chicken Meatball lettuce wraps! I can't wait to make these soon! I might not even have time to put them in the lettuce and eat them as is! 

Favorite Purchase

I saw a blogger on instagram sporting these loafers and I had to have them! They come in 6 different colors and I'm happy I was able to scoop up the pink ones before they sold out in my size- you can't beat the price of $21!!! If you're like my mom you're probably wondering - what are you going to wear that with? Well...jeans, pants - really anything that will allow me to wear them so yes even leggings haha! 

Favorite Read

I was flipping through US Weekly and saw this book as a must read - I'll admit the cover is what got me hooked first. I started reading on Monday and finished by Thursday - could not put it down! Maybe in Another Life is such a differently written book. You have Hannah a 29 year-old at a cross roads in her life and moving back to the only home she's ever known in LA. The book alternates chapters by her choosing one path over the other and it's really fascinating because you find yourself pulling equally for both lives. I'll just end this very brief review by saying - I cried...I read the last page of the acknowledgements the author wrote and I cried! It was as good on the last page as it was on the first! 

Favorite Song


File this one away for get's stuck in your head and you end up bopping to it all day long!! P.S. How gorgeous does Demi Lovato look in the video! 

Favorite Links


//Anything that doesn't require oven time is a winner in my book - these no bake cake batter truffles look delicious! 

//How do you feel about matching sets? I sort of love them! 

//I dished on my love for Jillian Harris a few weeks ago and looks like Lauren Conrad agrees because she has an interview on her site this week! 

Happy weekend friends!! See you back here Monday for Weekending! 
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On The Hunt | Nightstands

I haven't done a decor post in a while and it's because we really haven't needed to change anything in our home, but now the itch is back and I'm looking to make a little update in our bedroom since we've decided to stay another year. We don't have a traditional "bedroom" set and I'm okay with that since we're still not in our forever home - we might opt not to have a coordinating set when that time comes either, but one thing I've been looking to change are our nightstands. I've had my eye on a few varieties and wanted to see what your vote would be! 

Campaign Style

I find this style works easily for those of us that want to keep with a masculine theme for our spouses, but they are still very versatile and come in a variety of colors. I would lean more towards the grey color because it would compliment our headboard, which regardless of where we move I am not getting rid of! 
I'm actually not even sure if this nightstand from Land of Nod would work because it's technically for a child's room, but if the sizing works then this would be a possibility! Amazon also comes to the rescue because I found this great option in white, but again not sure the height would work! 

Mirrored Style

It actually might take some convincing to get Gary to agree to a mirrored nightstand, but there is something about this style that leaves your room feeling more light and bigger! Sadly this appears to be the more expensive options - womp womp! 
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Inspiration for both styles

She actually uses the exact same night stands from overstock that I have as a possibility above! 
I'm actually a huge fan of IKEA hacks and this would be a fun little project to do! 
I will have to keep my eye out at HomeGoods because that is where this blogger picked this piece from. 
The key to any nightstand is clearly fresh flowers :) 

Which style would you opt for?
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On Heavy Rotation | Two Beauty Buys

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Two things I will always buy - lipstick and nail polish. Two things I bought recently that I can't stop using - lipsticks and nail polishes!! Sometimes I like buying things I know I don't have to try on - I never run the risk of a lipstick being too small or a nail polish just not fitting right - some things just always make me feel better! Don't you feel the same way??
On Heavy Rotation | Two Beauty Buys

Maybelline "Blushing Pout"

I certainly didn't need another pink lipstick to add to my collection, but I couldn't pass up this absolutely perfect pink! I have nothing but rave reviews for this color and the finish is matte, but again not like regular matte's because there is a creamy finish to it, which makes sense since it's part of the "creamy mattes" collection. This might be a bit odd, but I also really love the smell!

MAC "Kinda Sexy" 

Before I talk about this gorgeous color, if you are a fan of MAC products please tell me you're part of their "recycle" program. I can't stress how awesome this program is - you return ANY 6 MAC products in their original containers and you get to pick a lip stick or eye shadow of your choice - it's free and basically how I get all my MAC lipsticks. I was in the mood for a nude color, that had a little more kick to it and this color was the prefect fit. There's a little orange tint to it which I like. It's part of their matte collection, but it has a nice finish and doesn't flake on your lips. 
On Heavy Rotation | Two Beauty Buys

Essie Gel Setter Top Coat

Before I get into the colors I'm loving for Summer I have to share my thoughts on Gel Setter by Essie. I picked this up after seeing a commercial - I'm a really good consumer!! I have to say it's a double whammy in terms of a top coat because you get the shiny effects of it being a gel top coat without the threat of LED lights, but it also dries incredibly fast! Not in seconds, but after about 4 minutes my nails were completely dry - that I can live with! I won't say it's exactly the same as having a gel manicure because I feel that my nails are harder when I get them done at the salon, but I really do like it and I've used it with OPI colors as well as Essie like they recommend. 

Go-to Summer Colors

Essie's Marshmallow: The perfect shade of white without looking like white out.
Feelin Hot-Hot-Hot: This is the hotter pink of the two I have and it's been on repeat as my pedicure color for the last 2 months. It makes me look tan and I need all the help I can get. 
Koala Bear-y: Looks more like a deep raspberry pink - very pretty on the nails. 
Red Lights Ahead - Where?: It's the perfect summer red. It also has a nice hint of orange to it as well. 
What are your go-to summer shades?
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