Friday, October 24, 2014

Friday Favorites + Coconut Rum Giveaway

Just another week that crawled by... but when I look at the big picture, it's like how the hell is October almost over already?

On Monday night, K and I celebrated the anniversary of when we met 6 years ago. He cooked up some surf and turf and I experimented making ravioli with sun-dried tomatoes (recipe to come next week). This was probably the fanciest thing we've cooked, ever!

Pretty excited I won a $100 gift certificate for Drugstore.com.  Has anyone every shopped on this site? Looks like an online Walgreen's but with a much bigger selection. Can't wait to do some "free" shopping for makeup and toiletries this weekend.

I'm also currently hosting a giveaway for 1 bottle of Blue Char Bay Coconut Spiced rum. I made a tropical martini over the weekend which was delish.

The giveaway is only open to US residents who are 21 years old or older. 

Favorite Funnies: 


Happy Friday lovelies!

Joining Amanda and Lauren today for their weekly Friday linkups.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Favorite Brunch Spot in Chicago

I'm not a Chicago local so I'm sure there are tons of great brunch spots in and around the city. This restaurant just happens to be one of my favorite places we tried out on our recent trip to Chicago. We both left the restaurant saying "Wow, that was probably the best brunch we've ever had!"

Bridge House Tavern is located at 321 N Clark Street downtown along Chicago river.


K and I actually just stumbled upon this place while walking around on the Sunday morning and decided it looked like a cool spot to eat outdoors on the river. We took the elevator from the street entrance down to the lower level and found a front row spot by those red umbrellas. Our server was a really cool guy who informed us that bloody marys and mimosas were only $5 on the weekends. That's always music to my ears as I love nothing more than brunching on a patio with cheap/affordable drinks.

K had the corn beef hash with eggs and I had chicken and waffles. I've never been a huge lover of pancakes and waffles but something about theirs was like the Krispy Kreme of waffles. I almost licked the plate.


This was the entrance from the street.

You can't beat the riverside patio on a sunny day watching the boats and cruise tours go by. Of course, there is also indoor seating for the colder months.

I'm definitely missing this beautiful city and hope to go back one day to experience many more great restaurants like the Brick House Taven.


Chicago locals and regulars out there: what's your favorite brunch spot?


Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Tropical Bikini Martini


Perfect name for my specialty martini and the good news it's delicious and super easy to concoct.

Serving size: 2 martinis

Ingredients:
1 fluid oz raspberry vodka
1 fluid oz pineapple juice
1 tbsp grenadine syrup
1 cup crushed ice

Optional garnishes: 
 Pineapple chunks
Lemon/lime slices
Cocktail cherries


What To Do:
Mix all ingredients with ice in shaker and pour into martini glasses.

Enjoy!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

  * This giveaway is only available for US residents who are 21 years of age or older *
 

1. Follow Kate and myself via GFC and Bloglovin

2. Link up your favorite recipes or food-related posts.

3. Grab our Recipe Swap button and link back to our blogs.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Fall Weekending

It finally feels like fall in Florida. And by fall, I mean it's no longer 95 degrees. The weekend was relaxing with an ounce of fun so perfect in my books!

On Friday, my company threw a tailgate party to kick off football season. Everyone wore their favorite team shirts and we had lunch from a food truck along with beer and tailgating games.

After the work event, K and I went to check out Cheddar's Scratch Kitchen for dinner which just opened in our area. The food and drinks were delish and very affordable! I want to go back to try some more things on their menu.


On Saturday morning, I went with K to look for a new car. That's a long process in itself but we found his dream car ~ a black 2015 Toyota Camry with black interior.

After car shopping, we met up with some friends for some lunch and drinks to watch the UCF game. Their cute pup Louie also kept us company while we enjoyed the nice weather on the patio.

Sunday was perfectly "lazy" spent food prepping, decorating for Halloween, blogging, laundry and the works ;-)

Hope you had a fab weekend!

Joining Biana for Weekending and Leeann for Monday Morning Gossip. 

Friday, October 17, 2014

Pinktober + Friday Faves

This week just crawled by and I had to re-adjust to a quiet household after having guests for the last three weeks. It's always sad when your house goes from busy and noisy to dead silent (other than K's football on the TV) but I'm looking forward to a relaxing weekend.

Last Sunday, the bestie and I had fun making bloody marys at home after cooking up some brunch and just hung out before she flew out on Monday. It was really sad to drop her off at the airport knowing that I won't see her for a while.

We celebrated Pinktober at work on Tuesday and donated a certain amount for every employee that wore pink. Pink Ribbon bagels from Panera Bread were served for breakfast, which we've done for the past several years.

It's always fun checking how much cash back I'm racking up from Ebates.  So far I've racked up $70 in the last two months. Almost any (major) website/company uses Ebates so make sure to earn the rewards while you're at it! With the holidays coming up, it's really going to pay off since I do most of my shopping online.


Wednesday was ladies night out for some sushi and wine. Yes, I went to the same sushi spot on Saturday night but no harm in going twice a week, right?

Favorite Cute Stuff/Funnies:



This reminds me of Skyh

I don't have kids but will be using this if and when that time comes. 

Happy weekend!

Joining Amanda and Lauren today for their weekly Friday linkups.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Younique 3D Fiber Lashes Mascara

This mascara works wonders on your eyes. A friend of mine was selling the Younique line of products and I decided to purchase the mascara after I saw her before and after photos on Facebook. After testing it out and seeing it for myself, I decided to share my experience because it seriously works miracles on your eyelashes. You can check out the website for yourself here.

It's applied exactly the same way mascara is done so takes only about a minute or so to apply.

I wasn't blessed with thick eyelashes. In fact, they are slightly blonde and almost invisible. This is the results of my first try. I only applied a small amount because I generally only wear a light amount of mascara unless I'm going out somewhere fancy. I could have applied a lot more for a more dramatic look.

Here's a video that shows how it works.


My eyes again this morning leaving for work with light amount of fiber mascara:

I seriously haven't found any other products that can thicken your eyelashes like this one. Other than actually applying false eyelashes. I'm just a beginner and no expert so you can check out Younique's website to find out exactly how the fiber mascara works to thicken your lashes. 

I can't wait to use my 3D mascara to the full potential for some upcoming weddings and charity events when I actually get to dress up and wear bolder eye makeup. 


Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Gift Ideas for Weddings & Bridal Festivities


My best friend is getting married in four months but since we live in different countries, I'm unable to attend her pre-wedding festivities such as the bridal shower and bachelorette. I will, however, be there standing by her side on her wedding day. She was in town this past weekend to do some wedding shopping so I wanted to make the trip extra special and shower her with some gifts to make up for my absence.

I bought this "I Do" hanger from Etsy (here) for my wedding day which is also a really cute accessory for wedding photos so I handed it down to Crystal to use for her big day.
 

She doesn't have a wedding registry which would obviously be my first go-to for gifts so I had to think of some other keepsake items that could also be useful for her wedding day.  

I found an online company called Personal Creations that does customized engraving so I picked out some pretty champagne flutes and a silver plated dessert set and had their names and wedding date engraved on the sets. She was so blown away and surprised by these gifts.

I remember receiving a personalized wall plaque from one our wedding guests and being so blown away by the thought and effort they put into the gift. Turns out they found the plaque from the same website.

I also used Personal Creations to buy this Eat, Drink & Be Married personalized cutting board for my boss who just got married two weeks ago. I have several other weddings to attend in the upcoming months so I'll definitely be buying more "out-of-the-box" gifts. The prices are so reasonable and the gifts definitely look a lot more expensive than they really are which is always a win, win in my book!

Bridal shower & Bachelorette Gifts:
~ Gifts from their registry (for bridal shower)
~ Lingerie & cute underwear
~ Wedding guest book
~ Bride garter set
~ "Sexy" lotion and oil set from Victoria's Secret (for bachelorette)

Where do you find reasonable gifts for weddings/showers/bachelorette parties?