Sunshine and Sorbet: Entertaining In Style 

Would you like a little bit of sunshine delivered to your doorstep?

 Are you looking for the perfect outfit to wear while entertaining friends this season?

 Would you like to make a super simple but really fabulous drink to serve guests? 

For the sunshine delivered right to your door , look no further than http://www.SEQCollection.com ! Enjoy free shipping when purchasing any one of the dresses, tops , bottoms , accessories, fitness, or fair trade items in their collection. I discovered the website when I saw many cute items on their IG feed @seqcollection . 

This dress is called the ‘Darcie’ and I paired it with a scarf from http://www.target.com. 

It is a gorgeous feminine mauve color featuring a ruffled bottom and 3/4 sleeves. It is unlined , non-sheer and lightweight. 



The shoes are Guess from http://www.macys.com , bracelets on my right hand are from http://www.burlingtoncoatfactory.com , and bangles on my left hand are from the champagne collection at http://www.alexandani.com. 

This LuluAvenue necklace is called Pebble Beach and can be purchased from http://www.stylebyalana.com


Go ahead and visit the Sunshine Equilibrium shop , http://www.SEQCollection.com and I’m sure you’ll find just the right pieces to create a perfect look of your own for entertaining or for attending any casual get together this summer. 

The mauve color of this dress reminded me of raspberry sorbet and that got me thinking about a really quick and easy recipe for Raspberry Sorbet Bellinis, so…


Here’s all you need: 

1. Pink Moscato

2. Raspberry sorbet

3. Fresh raspberries

Here’s all you do: 

1. Add a small scoop of raspberry sorbet to champagne flutes.

2. Top with Moscato and be careful because it bubbles up fast.

3. Garnish with fresh raspberries.


Here’s another great drink ( even though there is no moscato or liquor of any kind involved ) :

Raspberry Lemonade Floats 


You will need:

1. 1 cup fresh lemon juice ( about 10 to 12 lemons, squeezed )

2. 1/2 cup honey 

3. 1/2 teaspoon vanilla 

4. 1/2 cup warm water 

5. 3 cups chilled sparkling water or club soda 

6. Raspberry sorbet

To do:

Combine lemon juice, honey, vanilla, and water in mixing bowl. Use whisk to blend ingredients. 

Pour lemon juice mixture into a large pitcher and add chilled sparkling water or club soda, whisking to combine. Set pitcher in freezer for 5 minutes to cool quickly. Don’t forget and leave it there!

While lemonade is chilling, use a melon baller to scoop 4 to 6 mini sorbet balls per serving. Place them inside each glass and pour sparkling lemonade on top. 

Garnish with fresh fruit and a straw !


And there you have the easy drink ( plus another ) to make and serve ! 

Hope you find yourself surrounded with sunshine this season even if – 

And always remember –


Thanks so much for checking out this post ! Hope you found it worthwhile because I always appreciate your time and attention. 

Yours truly,

Jennifer

Xoxoxo



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Styling All American Classics: Stars,Stripes,and Burgers 

Whether you are spending this long, lovely holiday weekend tanning poolside,enjoying cocktails by the sea, checking out all the sales, or firing up the grill, you might want to let the color combination of the grand old flag inspire you to create looks perfect for the first unofficial start of summer. 

You don’t have to strictly keep the red,white,and blue combo for a festive look. A fabulous navy and white striped blazer and shoes from http://www.target.com can give you just the right amount of patriot flair when combined with a fun floral skirt. 


Or maybe you do want to go full-force with your patriotic pride and wear not just the colors in the flag , but an Amerian flag inspired accessory. This scarf, also from Target, would be perfect for you. 

It’s great with just a simple white tee-shirt but I like to mix prints so here’s how I will probably wear my flag scarf this weekend:


Dress is Max Studio from http://www.marshalls.com , bag is retired Vera Bradley , and shoes are Merona (#targetdoesitagain) . 

Or maybe I’ll just wear jeans and a black tank top :


I’d also love to style this fun scarf with a simple white dress and other cool accessories like this: 

Bag is Marc Jacobs / http://www.neimanmarcus.com ( which I will never own at $3,300) and bracelet is from @connectionsbymaya /Instagram and Facebook (very affordable ) 


Maybe you are going to be grilling this weekend, so why not add some style to your burgers ? 


This Caprese Burger recipe jazzes up the boring basic burger with the flavors of a delicious Caprese salad. Using both fresh basil and marinated tomatoes is important for the most flavorful taste. 

You will need :

1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste 

4 thick slices tomato

1 1/3 pounds ground beef

1 tablespoon of tomato paste

1/4 cup fresh basil 

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese 

1 clove of garlic , minced 

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

4 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced

4 hamburger buns, split

What to do:

1. Whisk the balsamic vinegar,oil, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Pour over tomato slices to marinate.

2. Preheat an outdoor grill for medium high heat, and lightly oil the grate.

3. Mix ground beef, tomato paste, basil, Pamesan cheese, garlic,and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a large bowl. Form beef mixture into 4 equal patties. 

4. Cook on the preheated grill until the burgers are cooked to your desired degree of doneness, about 5 minutes each side for well done. Top each burger with mozzarella cheese; allow to melt. Serve on buns with marinated tomato slices.


However, if grilling is really not your thing, but you want something different and fun,and also All American this weekend, how about these cookies ? 

Yes ! They are cookies ! And , you don’t even have to bake them ! 


They are just made of Nilla Wafers , Mint Thins, and lots of frosting ! I’ve even made them in my kindergarten classroom. It was so fun to teach the letter Hh with cookie hamburgers !! 

Whatever you decide to do this weekend-


Be safe and enjoy !!! 

Thank you so much for visiting my blog today ! I always appreciate your time and attention. 

Yours truly,

Jennifer

Xoxoxo

 

Uno Giorno Dolce Elegante- One Stylish Sweet Day 

Spring couldn’t get any sweeter here in Rhode Island with this long awaited sunshiny weather. 

I thought I’d share some equally sweet stylish deals and one of my favorite, most simple desserts in case you were craving a bit of easy indulgence today. 

This is another Cache brand dress I found at http://www.thredUP.com and I paired it with the Aimee statement necklace from http://www.facebook.com/luluavenueAlana. Yes, it’s the necklace I wear all the time. I really love it. The bracelets were $1.00 each at Joe’s Place on Atwood Avenue in Cranston, RI. ( Facebook – Joesplace) 



I added this little short sleeve cardi from http://www.burlingtoncoatfactory.com to make the outfit appropriate for work. I found it recently in the junior department and they had every color imaginable for less than $10.00 each. 

My shoes are Isaac Mizrahi New York and just like the dress, found at thredUP. The bag was less than $40.00 at http://www.marshalls.com.  

I do have a bit of a sweet tooth , and often like to use sugary , candy scented bath products as a non- caloric indulgence. 

Rinse Bath and Body chocolate soaps, Laura Mercier Creme Brûlée Sugar Scrub, and Philosophy French Vanila bubble bath are a few of my favorite go-tos and also make great gifts. 

However , sometimes you need the real thing , the real decadent goodness of a rich, almost too good to be true, dessert. 

My suggestion would be not to wait until after dinner. 

And here is is –

Gelato Affogato 

All you need is 1 pint of premium quality vanilla ice-cream and 4 shots of hot espresso, unsweetened. 

Chill your glass or bowl and make sure your ice-cream is extremely cold. Mold it into a 2 oz. scoop that will hold up to the heat of the espresso. 

Carefully pour the espresso over the ice-cream , essentially “drowning” the ice-cream.

It’s as easy as that, and it’s great to add caramel sauce, nuts, or chocolate chips too if you desire. 


I can’t post this without saying that my mom would never , ever serve this without an abundance of homemade cookies. 


Hope you have a day full of sweetness ! 

Thanks so much for visiting my blog.

Your time and attention is greatly appreciated!

Yours truly,

Jennifer 

Xoxoxo


Dinner And An Outfit -Monday Motivation 

There’s just something about Monday. It can be tough, even when you love your job, to go from an unstructured and hopefully relaxing weekend, back to the daily routine of work and life. 

Or , we can look at it like it’s a fabulous new day , new week, full of new possibilities. 

Or, we can just put on an outfit we love, plan a delicious , easy dinner for later, and hope for the best! 

This is a total and absolute look for less , with the entire ensemble , including shoes, bag, and jewelry, costing less than $98.00! 



I found this Cache dress at http://www.thredup.com ($21)last year and I’ve worn it so many times. During the winter I wore it with an ivory scarf, black blazer, tights and knee high boots. 

I’m glad the weather is finally warm enough to wear it with just a few accessories and sandals. My pearls are from http://www.target.com ($8/necklace, $5/bracelet)and the snake bracelet is from http://www.d.alexandercollections.com ($12.00).

The sandals are quite old, but my most comfortable for work. I like to wear them because they are so durable out on the playground. The brand is http://www.mydeliciousshoes.com but I found them at http://www.burlingtoncoatfactory.com for $14.99. 


This bag was a recent purchase , which I bought with Kohl’s Cash , and still available at http://www.kohls.com ($35).

I like to save money when I can, because although I kind of agree with SJP “Carrie”- 

We do need money for other things , such as dinner. Right ? 

So , that brings us to another way to make your Monday not so Mondayish. 

Plan an easy but delicious meal that you can look forward to making and eating all day long. 

I am Italian , as some of you might remember, and I grew up with a mom that believed in simple food , but high quality ingredients. 

This is a super simple meal to create and even suitable for company when you choose ingredients mindfully , depending on tastes of guests.

Pasta Al Forno


You will need :

1 pound rigatoni pasta

4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 large eggplant, cubed

10 large sundries tomatoes, chopped 

15 large infornate olives, pitted and chopped

2 dried chile peppers, crushed, optional 

2 cloves garlic, chopped 

1 jar (25 ounces) tomato puree 

Salt

12 ounces freshly grated mozzarella 

Smoked scamorza cheese, as much as desired, roughly chopped 

Freshly grated parmigiano cheese 

Easy steps:

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees and cook rigatoni in salted boiling water.

2. Prepare the sauce by heating up olive oil, eggplant, sundried tomatoes, olives, chili peppers, and garlic for a few minutes.

3. Add the puree and salt and let cook on medium heat for 10 minutes.

4. Drain rigatoni, add pasta to saucepan, sprinkle with parmigiano and cook for another 30 seconds. 

5. Place half the rigatoni in a baking dish, adding half the scamorza and another sprinkle of parmigiano cheese over the pasta. Add another layer and finish with final layer of all the cheeses. 

6. Bake for 30 minutes.

You could also add a loaf of bread , salad , grapes, cheese, antipasto favorites and wine to make the meal complete, especially if you have company. 

There’s only one problem with Italian food: 
 

Wishing you all a beautiful Monday and happiness throughout your week ! 

Hope this inspires you to make the most of each day and have fun with your wardrobe and meal selections ! 

Thanks so much , as always , for your time and attention. It is greatly appreciated! 

Yours truly,

Jennifer

Xoxoxo

Ten Little Things 

I’ve always loved this quote:

As I was sitting in the park today, with the sun shining, and seeing so many happy and healthy children playing and laughing, I was reminded of it. 

I thought , well, there are so many things to be grateful for right now , at this moment , I couldn’t even write a blog post about them , it would be too long. 

Then I thought I could if I limit it to ten. 

So, here goes, ten little things I’m grateful for , in no particular order: 

1. thredUP.com – website for used, high quality clothes for woman and kids , where I found this Gap brand dress for less than $20.00. 





2.This little sample of W.O.W. Wipe Out Wrinkles by ItWorks ,sent to me by the lovely @nicolecalifornia/ Instagram. It’s lightweight and feels great , smoothing out my face, just in time for pictures! 


3. Savers , where I found this denim jacket last summer for $6.00 ! Thank you, Jen Pierce, for taking me there and finding the jacket and making me try it on! If this was a list of 10 BIG things , you would be at the top – xoxo ! 


4. Our Public Library : We have a fabulous library in Johnston, Rhode Island. The children’s librarian, Meri Carney,is constantly providing fun, educational programs and events for all ages. 

Today was The Mohr Medieval Faire and we had a great time. Ms.Meri was certainly dressed appropriately ! 


There was so much to do and learn –


5. Libraries , in general , and the time to sit on a park bench and explore new books: 


6. Being able to simply ‘Hang Around.’


7. Del’s Lemonade Trucks everywhere you go in RI : 


8. Strawberry Season

9.No- Bake Recipes !

Although  I love to bake, sometimes I just want to assemble:


10. Gemini Season 😉 



Thanks , friends , for allowing me to share with you these ten little things I’m grateful for right now. 

Hope you find yourself inspired to: 

What little things are you appreciating today ? 

Yours truly,

Jennifer

Xoxoxo

That’s All She Wore-My Week, Fashionably Speaking 

It’s been a fun week for me, fashionably speaking, as I’ve been able to try some new things and also revisit some of my favorite items from the past. 

Monday I wore a ‘new to me’ VeronicaB dress I found at thredUP.com. I picked up the necklace and bracelets a few weeks ago at Burlington Coat Factory with the dress in mind. The necklace inspired me to pull different shades of green together for this look, which led to buying the Powerpuff girl scarf ( The Rack) to tie on my handbag.




I was so excited to come home Monday to a very special delivery from my friend, Alana . She is a stylist for Luluavenue and also represents Acti-Labs. She sent me the Skyscraper Mascara from Acti-Labs, which I had been curious about. I tried it out right away.

I’ve been using it every day and I’m really happy with the results. It is not too heavy, not too light, and definitely does not clump. It has the optimum brush/formula combination for lengthened,defined, even coated lashes. I was most impressed with it on Tuesday afternoon because I had applied it at around 5:00am and it still looked good at 5:00pm! 

That was 5:00pm at Angelika & Me Salon , which most of you know by now, is my home away from home. 

Early that day, I wore a really old Calvin Klein dress I found at BCF. I remember when I bought it my son was 1 and my daughter was 5 and they helped me pick out lots of pink and purple accessories to go with it. 

When I wore it Tuesday, I decided to keep the jewelry simple with my favorite silver pieces from Luluavenue.com. The necklace is called Modern Girl and was actually my first piece of Lulu Jewelry. 

You can contact Alana for Acti-Labs or LuluAvenue information and purchases on Instagram/ @style_by_alana or Twitter/@wheezie33. 

Have you ever heard of Mai Nyche? It is exclusively handmade jewelry and accessories with attitude and perspective. I was thrilled to discover it on Instagram/ @mainychebycysi. She will make accessories to coordinate with anything in your wardrobe. Visit her etsy shop: http://www.etsy.com/shopMaiNycheByCysi.com and you will be amazed ! 

I have these three sets –

I paired the red and blue floral set with navy stripes on Wednesday –

I have on the black and silver set today and love how it looks with my favorite striped dress from Target.

I did add a little polka dot cardigan ( also from Target)  earlier in the day , because I was chilly ( what else is new?) . The red scarf was a last minute idea, I had it tied on my bicycle bag and thought I needed a touch of color just for fun. 

By the way , the bicycle bag is on sale today at J.C.Penney!! 

So , friends, I’m going to show you tomorrow’s outfit. How ? Well, when I first got my jewelry from @mainychebycysi , I tried on the blue set with a little patterned cocktail dress from Cache ( found at thredUP ) . 

Of course , I was cold and added a sweater. I took the dress right off after the picture, and figured I’d wear it to go out some time. However , I feel like wearing it tomorrow, so I’ll wear it to work. Of course I’ll add a blazer , cardi , or jacket of some sort to make it work appropriate. I will also have blue flat sandals ready in case these shoes are not comfortable all day. 

That’s all , folks. That’s all I wore, or will wear , this week. 

Thanks so much for allowing me to share it all with you ! 
Hope it inspires you to have some fun with your wardrobe , mixing old and new items! 

I truly appreciate your time and attention.

Yours truly,

Jennifer 

Xoxoxo

Ps. I went with a jacket –


Easy Like…Saturday Morning? 

Sometimes you just have a really busy week and can’t wait for the weekend so you can relax, right?  Wait, sometimes? Well, for me, most times. 

What about when you get through a busy week ( for me , teaching , parenting, and all that jazz) and then Saturday comes and you realize it’s so jam packed that you really are not going to get a chance to relax anytime soon? 

I decided to make my day extra simple by wearing this maxidress from http://www.glamourfarmsboutique.com. It’s super easy to look put together with a dress that already has the colorblocking and print-mixing built in, and is about as comfortable as my softest, absolute   favorite  pajamas. 

And, like most Saturdays, I made my day not just easier, but more delightful, by starting out at Angelika & Me Hair Salon, in Johnston, RI.

I know I can always count on treats and a good Lifetime movie every time I visit Susan, Connie, and Bob at the salon. 


It was easy to accessorize this dress by wearing two of my favorite pieces of jewelry. I’ve worn this Luluavenue necklace so many times since I bought it last Fall. It’s a staple in the collection sold by one of my good friends, Alana. She is @style_by_alana on Instagram or you can go directly to her site http://www.luluavenue.com/sites/alanaj to purchase it. 


Quick close-up of the leather and freshwater pearl bracelet you might recognize from my post last week –

It was handmade by Maya Larson -@connectionsbymaya  / etsy , IG, Twitter, FB, Pinterest 

This is an especially busy Saturday because soon we are off to the theater where both of my children are performing in the ‘Beyond The Rainbow’ Spring Show. My son has already informed me I may need headphones/earplugs for one part. 

Fabulous.

However, I’d like to thank Angelina, my 10 year old, for taking time away from practicing her singing and dancing to take my pictures today. 

She’s always my best girl. 

I’d also like to thank my 6 year old for taking time away from his singing and dancing to be quiet so I could type this up. 

My best little guy, aka Lego Kid 

I am looking forward to the performance all the children have been preparing for for so long. The rehearsals were amazing and the music teacher, Ms.Rodi,truly deserves a medal for her talent and extreme patience. 

I am also looking forward to later , when I can be even more cozy ( although this dress is super comfortable) with these new slippers I found at boohoo.com 


and my favorite pajamas from good ol’ Target, which reminds me , I need to go there now. The cartwheel offer on woman’s and junior clothing expires today. 😉

Have a lovely Saturday ! 

Thanks for visiting the blog , hope you find yourself inspired to relax today! 


Yours truly,

Jennifer

Xoxoxo

Classy, Elegant, Versatile – Every Girl Must Have a Little Black Cat 

Are you at all superstitious? Don’t mean to alarm you , but tomorrow is Friday the 13th, and instead of avoiding black cats, I think I’ll do the opposite and wear one. 

I fell in love with this adorable bag from unique-vintage.com and thought it would be the perfect piece to go with my #nofilter tee from whimsyfashion.com. Use my code: MTFSHIPFREE for free shipping when ordering any item from http://www.whimsyfashion.com. 

Want to add a feline touch to your wardrobe ? You can make an evening look playful and still sophisticated with a beaded clutch.

Compliment a sparkly necklace with a bag that shines just as bright and adds even more personality to an outfit. 

Try a really eye-catching cat bag with a simple , yet bright , summery style that will look just right for any ocasssion. 

I love how the beautiful Taylor Swift styled her cat bag.Or maybe you are not into cats …

Mice are cute, right ?

 Or maybe you prefer puppies , like me? I’ve gotten a lot of use out of my Marc Tetro bag I found at zulily.com. 

Or maybe you do like cats , but not in a bag ? Maybe a Black Cat Cocktail is more your style. 

You will need: 

1 oz. blue curaçao 

1 oz. vodka

3 oz. lemon lime soda

1 oz. cranberry juice

1/2 oz lime juice

Lime twist for garnish

1. Fill shaker halfway with ice.

2. Add Curaçao, vodka, and lime juice. Shake until mixed well.

3. Add soda and stir.

4. Pour cranberry juice into a tall glass.

5. Over the back of a spoon, gently stir the mixed ingredients over the cranberry juice, being careful not to completely mix the two for presentation. 

6. Serve with a cocktail stirrer and a lime twist for garnish. 


Thanks so much for visiting my blog !!! 

I appreciate your time and hope you found it worthwhile. 

Wishing you all the best, 

Yours truly, 

Jennifer 

Xoxoxo 

Ps. If you need any shopping information, let me know in the comments and I’ll get right back to you 😉 .

Connections By Maya-Handcrafted Artisan Designs Celebrating the Language of the Soul

It seems fitting, today, on Mother’s Day, to share the story of an amazing business woman and mom I recently had the pleasure to meet. She is an artist, a true She-E-O , running http://www.etsy.com/shop/connectionsbymaya singlehandedly.

 Her love affair with jewelry began when she was a little girl, holding her mother’s jewelry up to the light and being amazed at how it sparkled and danced in the light. Having invaded her mom’s jewelry box over and over, one day her mom said to her “Maya, you should have been a gypsy!” That was the beginning of her live long passion for all things sparkly which morphed into an amazing eclectic mix of fabulous pieces of jewelry consisting of beautiful, affordable, unforgettable designs. 

She uses genuine distressed leather imported from Europe, natural turquoise and freshwater pearls. Her pieces consist of sterling silver, Karen Hill Tribe silver, and some silver plated elements. I love this bracelet , which is one of her top sellers , and also includes a single brass bead imported from Africa. 


It can be styled into a chic look such as this one :

Or a look with a Southwestern flair:


Or a little bit boho:


Or kind of cow girl: 


There are earrings to match:


She may even make you a necklace if you express interest. Maya’s business is all about that ‘connection’ with each customer. She will choose and combine elements into fabulous, casual or elegant, classy , easy to wear, memorable, affordable,must -have jewelry to suit any customer’s needs. 

She also caters to the modern, contemporary, urban chic customer with more minimalist pieces such as her most recent bracelet. 


It is made of saddle deerskin leather and gold beauty and is the newest launch at connectionsbymaya. 

I love this bracelet and I want to wear it with a scarf I found last year (target.com) for Memorial Day or the 4th of July ( or both occasions). Both the bracelet and scarf are fun statement pieces for the whole season, really. 


It’s not surprising that Maya Larson, living so close to Sundance, is inspired by the beauty and philosophy of the resort. 


Robert Redford purchased the 6,000 acres in 1969, named the land Sundance, and since then over 5,000 artists have been supported and fostered into a creative community in which they can learn, grow, connect, and give back. 

She is also drawn to the southwest influence, the casual feel, and the outdoorsy ruggedness combined with a very feminine touch that she sees in the products in the Sundance catalog. 

She is able to make her jewelry at a much more affordable price because she does everything herself , there is no middle man involved. 

Feel free to contact Maya at any time about any of her pieces. She is very accessible and can be found:

Connectionsbymaya@hotmail.com

http://www.etsy.com/shop/connectionsbymaya

Instagram.com/connectionsbymaya

Twitter – @connectionsbym

Facebook.com/connectionsbymaya

Pinterest.com/ connectionsbymaya

Thank you so much for visiting my blog! 

I sincerely appreciate your time and attention. 

Hope you are as inspired by Maya and her creative soul as I am. 


Yours truly,

Jennifer 

Xoxoxo

Fringe Benefits

Fringe has always been one of my favorite spring staples. I love the movement it adds to an outfit and how it can amp up a look.

 I found this ‘fringey’ Guess dress at thredUp a while ago. I wore it with a blazer and classic pearls around the holidays and with a red cardigan and Hunters back in February. 


Recently, I fell in love with this necklace and bag at Burlington Coat Factory and they reminded me of the dress. I wore the jean jacket to break up all the black and tone it all down for work. 

It’s all about texture when it comes to fringe and I love how leather and suede can add sophistication to the whimsical trend. It can have a tendency to look a bit festival when mixed with prints and colors, so if you are not feeling bohemian keep color combinations simple. 

There is a lot out there to choose from in classic neutral colors that you will want to wear for seasons to come. 

I love these gorgeous items I found while searching on polyvore.com.


I was inspired by these gorgeous ladies.
However , fringe really has been around quite a while.

Thank you for visiting my blog!

I really appreciate your time and interest. 

Hope you feel inspired to create a new look or even just watch an old cartoon. 

Yours truly,

Jennifer

Xoxoxo

Ps.