New Obsession: Quince

As you all probably already know, I tend to get obsessed with something {particularly food} for a bit. For awhile, everything seems to be about that dish. Right now that obsession in quince.

I’ve heard of quince before, but until Australia this Christmas, I’m not sure I ever really came across it. In Melbourne we found this quince tea that we now make iced tea from every weekend, and this amazing smelling soap. It’s become my new thing- I look for it every where. Because the scent is sweet and spicy, it would be a great hostess gift or new flavor to your next party.

collage quince

 

Artisan quince syrups.

What a quince looks like.

Quince paste, which is quite tasty. They say it’s good with cheese.

This is the brand of soap we found. Smells so good!

T2 teas are all the rage in Oz. This quince tea is perfect, it doesn’t need any sweetener.

I bet this body moisturizer smells amazing, too.

Beach Loving

My husband and I recently celebrated 5 years married {which also means 10 years together}. We decided that was a decent milestone, so we took off to a destination we’ve always wanted to visit– The Maldives.

As a popular destination for the rich and famous (Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes honeymooned here, and William and Kate were on an island the same time we were visiting), its hard to get to and not cheap when you do. So we only managed it for a few days, but loved every second. It’s truly an island paradise– white sand, crystal blue water, private villas, and the best snorkeling we’ve ever seen.

collage maldives

 

It was so special to have this experience together and a different way to celebrate than with the traditional anniversary gifts. I loved it, I loved being my husband, and hope we can go back together sometime soon!

Spring Forward

I don’t know about you, but I’m ready for a bright, warm spring this year!

Here’s some fun things getting me ready for this colorful season…collage spring

 

Awesome spring wrapping options for Mother’s Day, birthdays and more.

Spring tags.

Chocolate egg gift boxes.

Flower Chandelier.

Fresh and Easy

I’ve been working to lose weight and get my body healthy in the last year, and now I’m starting to focus on food. I’m trying to eat whole foods, cleaner and less processed. Even though it seems a bit “Brooklyn” to me sometimes (you know, like eating kale), its recently become more important, particularly living next door to China. And honestly, I feel better when I eat well.

I still have a mean sweet tooth, so I’m always looking for recipes that let me enjoy my cravings without falling off the wagon. Here’s a few I’ve tried lately… and may even serve to guests!

collage fresh

Fresh almond milk. Creamy and rich, it is so much better freshly ground. It goes bad in a few days, so it would be good to have on hand with a full house.

Breakfast quinoa bars. These have a lot of ingredients, but are tasty. I’d make ‘em again.

Oatmeal banana muffins.  Ok, I haven’t tried these yet, but they look good! Next on the list.

Chocolate Chia Pudding. I mentioned this before–  while not that sweet, nor like pudding, it’s fun with fruit.
Any good healthy recipes you can share? Any that have particularly loved by guests– even non-healthy ones?

Smooth Fruits and Veggies

We recently got a Nutribullet and I am now obsessed with finding new recipes. I love my usual spinach + banana + berries + flax seeds, but I really want to get in more veggies {rather than fruits} that I wouldn’t usually eat, while keeping it relatively low calorie, and, of course, tasty. It doesn’t hurt that they are so colorful!

collage smoothies

 

1. Beets + avocado + strawberries + lemon + celery + apple

2. Carrot + banana + almond milk + cinnamon 

3. Greens + almond milk + flax + banana (can I handle it without the berries??)

4. Fig + banana + vanilla extract + flax

Red Carpet Ready

Do you get excited for the Oscars? I do. I enjoy watching movies anyway, but with the added challenge of seeing the top movies before the Academy Awards airs, it gives it a sense of purpose to the past time. And I love having friends over to hear what they liked and loathed that year. I’m proud to say that I’ve nearly seen all of the best picture nominee this year, with just one hold out {and I’m hoping to see Captain Phillips in time!}.

Here’s some fun ideas if you want to have a red carpet party this Sunday…

collage oscar 14

 

These black and white popcorn containers are so cute, they could be centerpieces.

Gotta get the right cookie cutter for this, but the results are amazing.

I love the glitter and tickets to spruce up these cups.

The Hollywood sign really takes the cake here.

Downloadable one page ballots here.

These ballot envelopes are so cute.

Popcorn boxes are great for show munching.

Modern and Whimsical Fairy Wings Kids Party

I adore everything about this private book reading party. What a gorgeous setting, with tons of pops of color, crafts, and snack.  And, seriously, I’m loving those wings.
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Kelli Murray‘s photo’s bring this party to life. See more from her and this party here.

Animal Figurines

This weekend I was sick on the couch most of the time, and online shopping {and chocolate} made me feel better. I started looking at Shopbop’s home decor and fell in love with these little guys.

The beautiful white porcelain with the touches of gold make these animals’ regal nature shine through. That horse cake stand is mine– as soon as I have a big enough kitchen to keep it.

 

 

collage shopbop

 

All images from Shopbop.

Welcome Back!

After  a rough end to 2013 with losing the content from the last 5 years, it has taken me a bit to pick up the pieces and move on. But it’s a new year and I’m ready to get started {better late than never, right?}. Here’s a few things I’m thinking about to make 2014 awesome.

collage 2014 big

1. Put on a DIY workshop. Wouldn’t this leather cuff be cool? {image}

2. Celebrate Every Day! Really, I mean it! By living in the moment and enjoying the little things, and any chance to have a party {and cake!}. {image}

3. In the last few years I’ve really started to find my personal style. I hope I can continue to grow and explore in that {and try out these cute nails}. {image}

4. Spread the party love. More on this later. :) {image}

5. This little sign motivates me. {image}

6. We are going to have to look for a new apartment soon. I’m hoping to create a beautiful and comfortable home. {image}

7. I threw myself into eating healthy last year. I plan to keep it up! {image}

8. I really want to make it to Japan. I hope I hope!! {image}

9. This image is from an awesome hike of Hong Kong, combining exercise and exploring my city. More of this, please! {image}

 

Just a little about what I’m doing about and where I’m going. How about you? Any plans for the year? Or have you already give up on resolutions?

Looking forward to seeing lots more of you! xoxo