Saturday, April 5, 2014

My first Stitch Fix!

(Wow. I know I hadn't written here in a while, but since I was posting over at Lou Goes West while in Boulder, I skipped 2013 here entirely! Oops!)

Back in February, I signed up for my first Stitch Fix delivery. Basically you fill out a style profile, set your desired price range, put together a Pinterest board (optional but really helpful, I think), and a stylist assembles a box of 5 items you'll love! When it arrives you try everything on, buy the things you want to keep, and send back the pieces you don't want. I posted about it on Facebook and was surprised to see how many of my friends were already using the service!

A couple weeks ago, my first delivery arrived! I had peeked on the site ahead of time, so I had a general idea of what was coming. A dress, two shirts, a pair of jeans, and a statement necklace.

First of all, they nailed it with the colors. The dress was a little tight, but everything else fit surprisingly well. I gave my mom a fashion show via skype, and it happened that I had friends staying with me the day it arrived. It was super-fun and helpful to get more opinions on everything.

The Fix:
-Harli belted fit & flare dress - $58
a little tight, the fabric was kind of thin. overall not flattering on me.

-Bay to Baubles statement necklace - $38
really cute, and looked great under the split neckline of the teal blouse.

-Kensie Jeans - $88
great fit! but in the end, too similar to the skinny jeans I already have for $30 from Old Navy.

-Cicely mixed-striped top - $68
looked way more flattering once it was on than I expected, but not special enough for the price.

-Colibri solid tab sleeve blouse - $48
Love! high quality fabric, the perfect color, good balance of trendy and business-y

Though I hemmed and hawed about the necklace and jeans, in the end, this blouse is the only thing I kept from the first round. I wore it last week and got several compliments on it. I had a $25 credit from my friend referral link, so it was only $23--even better! For ALL of the items, you give feedback on fit, style, price, etc so that each time their selections get better and better.

Overall the experience was pretty fun--the anticipation, playing mix & match with pieces I already have, etc. I already scheduled a second Fix, which will arrive later this month. I've also overhauled my Pinterest board, making sure to focus on things I want, and getting rid of things I already have.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Pumpkin Cookies for all!

Tonight I had the urge to bake. I started with a variation on these pumpkin chocolate chip cookies, and followed it up with a little something for RogerDog. In season, and tummy-soothing!

Pumpkin Pie Dog Biscuits 
from the You Bake 'Em Dog Biscuits Cookbook
Combine all dry ingredients. Blend together wet ingredients. Mix together (I always skip the separate bowls, and mix everything together from the start). Roll out and cut with cookie cutters. Line baking sheet with tin foil, bake at 350F for 30-40min.

-1.5c whole wheat flour
-2c white flour
-1/2c rolled oats
-1 tsp cinnamon
-1/2 tsp nutmeg
-1/2c chicken broth (I just used water)
-3/4c canned pumpkin
-1 Tbsp oil
-1 Tbsp maple syrup
-1 egg

Roger stayed in the living room the whole time I was making these, but as soon as they came out of the oven he magically appeared at my side to taste test. Based on his reaction, these won't be around for long!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

What makes it Home?

In just a few short weeks, Roger and I will be jumping in the car and trekking out west to start our year-long adventure of living in Boulder, CO. I've been pondering for the last few months what, exactly, I would be bringing with us. I've made lists and sub-lists of what will be stored, sold, donated, tossed, and finally, brought along. It was easy at first--dishes, naturally, and pots & pans, and clothing, and bedding. And skis. And work folders. Oh, and craft supplies. And what about baking stuff? And on, and on.

I started wondering about my $15 coffee maker. Does it make sense to schlep that across the country? Well, not really. But I don't like the idea of repurchasing everything once I get there, both for financial reasons and environmental. What would happen to it at the end of my year? But I also want to have the things I need and enjoy, and not feel like I'm camping the whole time!

Then, my sister Meg took a lot of that pressure off. She has graciously offered to start checking her thrift store in Breck for the things like a coffee maker, toaster, blender, cookie sheets and muffin tins. She already has enough dishes, glasses, and cooking utensils to outfit me. Both of our linen closets are stocked with LLBean sheets, so in a sense, her sheets basically ARE my sheets! AND she even emailed her close friends a list of what I'll need, to see what furniture they might be able to loan me for the year! Within two days, I had offers for a desk, stuffed chair, coffee table, dresser, TV stand, and TWO kitchen tables!

Now instead of worrying about the bare necessities, I get to bring the things that will make our condo feel like home. I've already started a list (of course!) of what that might include:
-set of 5 mixing bowls
-flour & sugar canisters I painted
-good knives
-dish towels (all in Ithaca colors, naturally!)
-a couple of my favorite mugs and pint glasses
-sewing machine & craft supplies

What are the things in your home that make it yours? I know it will all come down to what can fit in our lovely little Subaru, but I am optimistic that I'll bring the right things, and fill in the gaps with loaned/thrifted stuff. What else would you add to this list?

And what kind of marketing professional would I be if I didn't take this opportunity to plug tomorrow's moving sale! 
This is a combination of my stuff and another friend who's moving. Spread the word!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Mason Jar Smoothies

Friends, I have exciting news. Did you know that the blades of most standard blenders will fit on mason jars?! I saw it on Pinterest over a month ago, and finally tested the theory this week. 

I love smoothies, but considering the mess I usually make, it was never a practical option to make one for breakfast during the week. This is a game changer. Now not only is there no pitcher to wash, the smoothie is already in the perfect to-go cup! 

In an attempt to jumpstart Spring in Vermont, I've been treating myself to a different fruit smoothie variety every morning this week!  

The possibilities are endless. Strawberry-watermelon-spinach smoothie, anyone? 
Breakfast is served!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Birthday Treats: Deep Dish Cookies Pies

Had a lovely dinner with Erin and her family to celebrate her birthday! We finished the evening with these amazing creations, Deep Dish Cookie Pies.

The original recipe calls for homemade cookie dough, but trust me, the pre-made dough from the grocery is just as good when it's all gooey-melty-delicious with ice cream on top! The trick is to pull them out when they're still a little under-baked. When Meg & I made them for my birthday, we left them in a little too long and lost the soft, gooey quality that makes these so fantastic. 

Deep Dish Cookie Pies: Smoosh cookie dough into ramekins, bake at 375F for about 15min. Top with ice cream, and dig in!!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Weekend Scenes

We got a dusting of snow Friday night, so first thing Saturday morning we headed to the pier to play before it all blew away. The rest of the weekend has been filled with laundry, taxes, paying bills, writing valentines, and trying to sort the clutter that has accumulated over the last month.  

Valentine Tree! (That's a thing, right?) 

Friday, November 4, 2011

Roger is Awesome.

So, I adopted Roger when he was a year and a half. He had been in Vermont for 6mo, transferred up from a shelter in Florida. Other than a couple vaccination records I was able to hunt down, I knew pretty much nothing about his life up to that point. He was sort of a nervous fella, but we took to each other right away and the rest is history.

Recently, we've become mayor of our vet's office trying to figure out why Roger needs to pee 10x a night. Urine tests, blood tests, and this morning: x-rays. We still don't know why he's peeing so much. But we do know a little bit more about his life B.V. (before Vermont).

The vet brought me back to see the x-rays. That's a lot of kidney stones, I thought to myself. "Where did you get Roger?" he asked. "Humane Society of Chittenden County," I responded. "Uh huh. Well, it appears that he's been shot, at least twice, at some point in his past." And then I realized what the x-rays were showing. That constellation of glowing dots on the left hip x-ray was bird shot! And a BB lodged directly under his spine!

To say my jaw dropped would be the only accurate description for my reaction. I stood there staring back and forth from one x-ray to the other to Roger to Dr Eustis and back. Someone shot my dog? Some asshole SHOT a PUPPY?? TWICE?!?! Well I guess that explains why he used to be a nervous dog!!

He went on to explain that since they weren't causing Roger any problems, we would just leave them in there. If the BB had been to one side or the other, it might be what's causing his current problems, but right in the middle it's just lodged in muscle.

I don't really have a good way to sum this up, other than to say hug your dog.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Sunday Scenes

Getting a little jump on the work week

Cucumbers, carrots, tomatoes

Smile turning into a yawn

Sunday bone = happy dog

Monday, August 22, 2011

Campfire Cuisine with Christie & Lou

Since our Memorial Day camping trip was four days long, we decided to get a little adventurous with our breakfast and dinner menus! 

Dinner #1: Cheddarwurst, corn on the cob, potato salad
I mean, the park was called Cobscook, we couldn't NOT have corn one night, right? 

Breakfast #1: Pancakes & Bacon (no picture)
I brought two boxes of firewood with me, but thanks to the damp chilly coastal weather, we needed more by morning. Unfortunately, we were awake and wanting coffee before the ranger station was open. Not fun. But finally we were able to get firewood, quickly followed by coffee and warmth and BREAKFAST!

Clearly, the ranger station had some pretty high-quality, dry well-seasoned wood. All firewood foams like that, right? 

Dinner #2: Boboli pizza with peppers & bacon, salad
After successfully cooking Boboli pizza on a wood stove for our Bolton hut trip last February, I couldn't resist trying it over an open campfire. It was delicious! Crispy on the bottom and toasty on the edges, all melty and gooey on the top.

Breakfast #2: Trash Can Breakfast
In looking up possible dinners, I came across a bunch of "trash can" recipes. Basically, this means you throw everything into a coffee can, cover with tin foil, and stick it in or over the fire.

For our trash can breakfast, we added eggs, sausage, and veggies. Once it's all cooked, top with shredded cheese and dig in! 

Dinner #3: Leftovers
We had planned on veggie burgers for our final dinner, but unfortunately they didn't stay frozen solid enough to stay together on the grill so we ate another round of Cheddarwurst, leftover pizza, potato salad, and garden salad. We also had plenty of cheese & crackers, trail mix, and watermelon, which is what we had for lunch each day.

Breakfast #3: Orange Peel Muffins
I cooked these Sunday night as a to-go breakfast for Monday morning. I wasn't quite sure how they would turn out, but I think they were pretty good! It's a good thing, too, because we had to pack up and leave in a hurry, narrowly missing a serious downpour early Monday morning!

Desserts: Banana Boats!
Don't think we skipped dessert! Banana boats are made by slicing a banana the long way and stuffing with desired filling, wrapping it in tinfoil and cooking it a bit to soften and melt everything. Let it cool a bit, then eat with a spoon! We tried chocolate & peanut butter one night, and chocolate & marshmallows another night. Success!