Monday Morning Madness: Little Celebrations

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Like most moments of our lives, things seem to pass by so quickly and we begin to wonder where all the time has gone. How we ended up in a particular place and it almost can begin to feel like life has a certain domino effect to it.  This has definitely been a theme to my thoughts lately, just thinking about how it’s already about to be the end of August and my birthday (i.e. October in 2 months, what?!) is about to be around the corner. I think this year has been the quickest year to date, but so far it’s been an amazing one.  

 This past weekend was about celebrating that last bits of summer and also welcoming new opportunities writing-wise, and other ideas, etc…that I’m looking forward to.  I will be posting pictures soon of Charleston, too! Anyhow, lately life handed me this thought; It’s so easy to become excited about where things are headed at times that we begin to completely (and almost unconsciously) dismiss those moments where we didn’t feel like we had any great ‘grand’ ideas, or had a goal that seemed almost untouchable at one point.  I suppose I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the meeting of those two phases in life. I’m at a place where I can see behind me- and I can see in front me.  It’s a fabulous feeling, even if things don’t work out. I suppose this is another phase of being in your 20s, and for me, just about mid-20s. Serious gasp, after that one.  But you know? It’s actually lovely to feel the ground not be quite as shaky.  I emphasize ‘quite’- but it’s a step.  Is this a just-about-mid-20s thought?  Ah, anyhow- this was me celebrating this somewhat ‘meeting place’ of my life, so far, this morning.  A new little routine I’m taking up…now.  You know how I’m all about the little things that make life feel a bit more like Wonderland. And p.s…it’s a dangerously delicious, and simple, combination- so beware.

 I mean, really, what’s better than strawberries, goat cheese, and cinnamon graham crackers?

 I would love to know- what are some of your small, yet magical, routines to celebrate life wanders? xoxo.

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In My Cup: Simple Inspirations From Friends.

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Even though all I can dream about lately is my favorite season, Fall, I decided I might as well embrace summer here and there before it’s gone. To be completely honest my week has been little sparks of wonderful, and other moments have been a drab. Lots of pondering on where in the hell I’ll be living in exactly one month from now, and trying to find a new job that won’t make me completely miserable, and also balancing heavier thoughts of the universe (i.e. oh, you know, just the meaning of life and all.) On the other hand, I have definitely had my fair share of catching up with friends lately whom I haven’t spoken to in a while, which is always a welcomed change.  For instance, one of my closest friends lives in Asheville, NC and just got a new ‘big-girl’ awesome job where her job title includes camping eight straight days every 2 weeks. How amazing is that? Of course we talked about it for about an hour like two crazed 20somethings having a rare ‘hey, things are going to be okay’ moment. Ah, to have a job hanging out in nature? Lovely. She is a newly-licensed Recreational Therapist, so to score a job within a huge Wellness center is definitely nothing short of amazing.  She will be helping people with substance abuse problems- what a wonderful way to be around people and nature everyday and to give back in a way. It made me rethink a lot of where I’m heading, and where I want to go. Good vibes. Anyhow, hope you loves are having a wonderful Thursday! xoxo. Here’s a few things that have made my life a bit more whimsical as of late, the first being Jessica (whom I talked about in this post) and me in the ridiculous boa, naturally:

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{sweet (blurry) memories of childhood and playing ‘Cinderella’}

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 {summertime treats: GoAgave natural soda}

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{an article I wrote this week about my experiences of living in the South, and how it taught me to trust + a beautiful view from my parent’s home}

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{new superga sneakers, before rainy Dave Matthews concert}

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 {fall-inspired candy corn scented candles in midsummer- instant cozy home makeover}

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 {the plants in my home are starting to make the place look like a jungle, which is a welcomed look especially on rainy evenings while reading}

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 {cupcakes and cashmere + thanks for the drink idea+ carrot margaritas}

xo. Cheers to the weekend!

In My Cup: Happy Anniversary, My Lovely Blog.

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{peach sharpies for writing, fresh vanilla-bean infused coffee/my ridiculous awesome mug, and crackling wick vanilla scented candles to make up for a calming winter fireplace sound}

So, WordPress gave me a tiny happy anniversary well wishing this morning- which I thought was too awesome.  I didn’t even know it had been a year since starting this blog (we’ll nix the fact I was sort of MIA for 5 months), but I couldn’t help but think it’s been a wonderful outlet for me to share my thoughts and feelings…and recipes and random ideas that I think up or come across.  Hopefully this next year will be even brighter, and somehow, I feel like it will be.  I figured since I was a little too late for Monday Morning Madness, I would just keep it a simple day of reflecting on the little things that have been making life bright as of late.  Thank you for following my blog and coming along this journey of life, with me. xoxo.

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{a newly-sprouting sunflower in my window, new beginnings are all around us}

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 {pretty NC skies + local beers}

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{re-found photos of beach summer trip + awesome ice cream shops}

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{manuka honey for DIY masks + late night movies}

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{sunbathing fur family, of course}

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{chic leith sweatpants + tildon pumps are sort of everything}

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{this hot pink scalloped lace shirt will forever have a place in my closet, bright colors are so uplifting}

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{where can we get this iced coffee? via Darling, Be Daring}

xoxo.

Monday Morning Madness: New Age Martha Stewart, Here.

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Hello Monday, you’ve really kicked my ass. Stress-wise, that is. You know the feeling, so I’m not going to harp, or keep the negative energy flowing, I’m going to make peach and fig tarts. As I did above. And, yes, they are pretty mostly because I like pretty things, but note, they fell apart the second you tried to eat them because, again, yes, I insisted they be gluten-free. So no worries, I’m no real Martha Stewart, my tarts are all show. But they tasted amazing and were also vegan, so woo! I only used honey and a tad of agave to sweeten, so I suppose it’s ‘a give and a take’ sorta’ thing. The flour was gluten-free obviously, so they were a brown-rice flour, so it makes the dough a little, hm, flakier, we’ll say. However, it did singe the ‘guilt’ a bit. Anyhow, this was the inspiration for a Monday afternoon full of attempt-to-be-Martha-Stewart fun. Of course, I opted for the ‘Laura-version’, trying to make it vegan and such. Note: I am no longer vegan (vegetarian), yet I sometimes find making things vegan are easier, and no, I have no idea as to why. I am definitely by no means good at baking, but it was actually quite lovely and stress-relieving. Maybe it was the wine? Probably, but we’ll go with the baking on this one. Perhaps we’ll be drunken Martha’s together? Perfect. Creative endeavors come in all forms, we’ll stick to that. xoxo. 

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{p.s…when you are trying to ‘vibe’ with your inner Martha, if you mix honey and cinnamon…it makes a mean natural and delicious decorating tool/option when you put it in a ketchup bottle, etc., so you can make frilly hearts, like above, without all the added refined sugar, hell yea!}

p.s.s…check out my 10 Reasons He Doesn’t Have a Girlfriend, with all the other awesome writers over at 20something. xoxo.

In My Cup: Weekend Style and Sorts.

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{the best iced latte I have ever had at the 7th Street Farmer’s Market, with Vanilla Bean-infused sugar}

Hm, for the most part life as of late has been pretty busy with here and there, and a lot of craziness in-between. I was stoked about moving somewhere new for the past month, and then like most things, my plans went into a hectic downpour and I decided to stay in my current apartment. In which, yet again, I should know my luck because I waited until the itsy bitsy last minute (as any person of my nature would, life is unpredictable, random invites to Paris could always be hovering around the corner, right?) and someone grabbed my lovely apartment right from beneath me. So now I’m something like a nomad, per usual. Oh, the loveliness of life. Anyhow, after about 3 hours of complete spazz mode seeing I had nine days to figure out a new place to call my habitat, I opted for a bottle of wine. I thought it was a great idea. It must have been actually, because the next day I was notified the heaven-sent angel said he was in ‘no hurry’ to move in (it’s like, where are you going to live you mysterious man? Are you just drifting along, or did you just finish ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ and get all lovely and thankful on me?) so I said karma would grace him any day now, like any normal person would respond. He is giving another 2 months for me to wait until the last minute. What a lovely, indeed.

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{I had to include a quote, you can’t reference ‘Eat, Pray, Love’, without a quote. It’s impossible}

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 {my first choice for stress-management, naturally}

So with the two months in hand, I’m still all over the place as the where I want to move. I could just stay in Charlotte for another year to get a bit more steady, but then my whole ‘Life is short, Laura White, what the hell are you doing?’ voice blows me away like some god-like conscious. Stating the above when I least expect it, like while I’m making coffee, or while I’m in the shower, making pancakes, watching a move, driving, etc. I’m actually kind of a hazard at this moment in my life, please consider this a warning if you see me driving past you…god-like voices from our conscious do not discriminate while driving, apparently.

However, aside from my craziness, as always. I hope your Saturday is lazy and full of summertime randoms. Here are some things/inspirations in my cup lately…

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 {speaking of infusing sugar, I’m thinking of giving this classic idea a healthy twist by infusing my coconut sugar with vanilla beans instead}

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{obvious self portrait moments, that we’re all guilty of, when I realize I’m always ready for it to be Fall/dark color schemes}

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{what I’ll be painting tomorrow, because who can resist gold painted honey bears as vases? Obviously, like, no one. A Beautiful Mess, always has such addicting ideas}

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 {Sex on a first date? My advice, from a gypsy fairy perspective (you’ll know what I mean, ladies, in my best ‘Samantha’ voice), of course}

freepeoplebalcony.

 {Refinery29 nails switching to natural makeup-three-part ‘need to knows’ + these Free People slips are so pretty}

sweetlyrawbananadonuts.

{healthy mini-banana donuts, they do exist! Vegan & gluten-free, plus how cute are they?}

Monday Morning Madness: Creamy Coconut-Garlic Dressing

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The other day we were grilling out and I was in the mood for a homemade salad dressing. I wanted something with a punch and yet had a light feel to it, quick to prepare, and of course- fresh ‘laying around the house’ ingredients. I whipped this together and it was a hit, even with people who definitely would rather slide the idea of ‘healthy’ over. The coconut oil gives the dressing a light and subtle sweet coconut flavor, while the garlic is a balance of rustic and savory, and the avocado I used helps to give everything just the right creaminess for a dressing I plan to use quite often. Plus, it’s super versatile- you can use it a lot this summer in a pinch; sandwiches, a quick dip, or a good toss in a tried and true pasta salad recipe…

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