Friday Link Love

Guys, I have to tell you I am especially excited about this weekend. According to the weatherman we are in for some straight up cooler weather. A high of 75! I mean, I might even have to wear a shirt with sleeves; how crazy is that? In other news, one of the local ice cream shops recently moved to a larger location and announced that they are now serving breakfast. I thought it was a bit unusual, but I must say I am intrigued. I managed to convince Andy that we needed to try it out, so we’ll hopefully heading over there to kick off our weekend tomorrow morning. I may also be planning to innocently point out the pumpkin patch that just happens to be around the corner; Halloween is only a little over a week away, and this feels like a good time to pick up supplies for a jack-o-lantern. What’s on deck for your weekend?

I am all for quirky home goods with a purpose, here are 27 Products That Are Almost to Clever to Use.

These baked Apple Cider Donut Holes look amazing. If I made them, I don’t know if I’d be able to share…

What every grown up Halloween party needs, an awesome candy cart.

I just can’t get enough of tiny houses, and I am LOVING this airstream remodel.

Love me some Mr. Darcy, and love me this Darcy quote sweatshirt.

This DIY Autumn Garland is gorgeous, and I really want to find an excuse to make one 🙂

How insanely gorgeous (and mildly disturbing) is this Dustin Bailard inspired Halloween makeup.


Image from here.

I Made A Cake!!!!

Monday I got an email from my husband asking if I would be willing to make this birthday cake for one of his coworkers. My knee jerk reaction was “mmmmm, I don’t think so”, but then he told me it was a surprise birthday cake for the lady who had sweetly sent me my beloved “Baking the World a Better Place” kitchen sign. There was no way I could say “no” to something for the nice lady who gave me presents, right? So I told him I’d try. The rest of the conversation went like this: When did they need it? Wednesday. Next Wednesday? Nope, this Wednesday. Okay then, emergency run to the grocery store it is.

Here’s how things went down.

l1Tuesday night I baked three layers of triple chocolate cake, sandwiched chocolate chocolate chip buttercream between the inner layers, and dirty iced the outside with vanilla buttercream. After all that was done, I placed it carefully in the fridge so it could “set up” over night. l2Tuesday, I made another batch of vanilla buttercream and gave the set cake its final coat of frosting using a icing smoother and the Viva towel method to smooth things out a bit but still maintain the charm of classic buttercream. Then I made my very first drip glaze for the top and side of the cake.  l5There was a minor set back; the Dunkin Donuts near my house was out of pink frosted donuts, plus they had no alternative colors with the required sprinkles. So I bought plain white frosted, took them home, brushed them with a little heavy whipping cream, and dipped them in my own damn sprinkles. That’s right people, I Tim Gunn’ed the thing 😉 l4The rest was really easy. Stack donuts, cookies, and roses, and finish with a handful of sprinkles to tie everything in. Andy was even kind enough to drive me back to his office so I could guarantee that my precious cake baby arrived safely. l3So, will I be taking up cake decorating as a new profession? Probably not, but I did better than I though I would, and Andy said his coworkers were very pleased with the results. I’m gonna chalk it up as a win, and now I have a couple more tools in my baking arsenal.

Thinking Inside the Box: Le Tote

The adage “third time’s a charm” was on the nose with my third Le Tote box. This is the first box that I have worn every single item out of the house. Spoiler alert: I didn’t end up purchasing any of the pieces, but I had a blast trying everything out and there was one extremely close call that I will tell you about further down.l8 l9 l10 l1
Ava Wrap Tie Cardigan – This was the only garment that was even the tiniest bit disappointing. Teal, kick ass color on me. Wrap style, yay for waist definition. Sweater, keeps me warm at the office. The only real draw back was that is was a little itchy. I checked the fiber content, no red flags there, so I think it was just the knit itself. Definitely worth the try though.
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Ava Cap Sleeve Top – Surprisingly, this was my favorite piece in this set. I don’t normally go for bright and colorful, let alone bright, colorful, AND patterned. I should have hated this, but it was pretty awesome. I wore it three times, and every time I got complements on how it looked. Ultimately, I sent it back because while it was fun to wear, it felt a bit like I was trying on someone else clothes, and I am trying to curate a wardrobe that is 100% me. l7
Noir Sweater Knit Swing Dress – I felt so sassy in this. It fit well without being to clingy. It had great movement, and the color was perfection. It would have been mine, but the price was a little higher that I was willing to go on something I wouldn’t be able to wear for most of the year.
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Clement Circle Horn Studs – Larger than I usually go for studs, but I gave them a shot and they were cute, but ultimately not something I could see myself wearing a lot.
Rebecca Minkoff Diamond Shaped Earrings – pretty but they fit oddly on my ear, and I caught my office phone on them a couple of times so back they went.  l2

And there you have it. After such a great tote, I think I am going to extend my subscription a little while longer and see if the fourth order is even better 🙂

Friday Link Love

fllSo I may be a little behind on posting this week’s Link Love. Currently, I am hanging on the couch with four of our five cats watching Law & Order, a nice quiet evening in after a busy week. We have quite a bit on deck this weekend, lots of errands to run and plans to make, still trying to catch up from being out of town for a whole week. On top of that,  I can’t believe that October is half over, and only two and a half more months until 2016 is over. How did that happen? I do have to say though that I am really hoping 2016 gives us all a break and lets us enjoy the rest of the year in relative peace. I think we could all use a break at this point.

Sometimes you just need a little something cute to brighten your day, here are 21 Reasons Pandas are the Absolute Best.

I am still on the search for the perfect perfume, and I thought I knew pretty much everything I need to know, but then I read this article and picked up a few more tips on how to judge and wear a perfume.

Now that the leaves are starting to turn, just a little bit, I am on the look out for the perfect specimens to paint.

The past two weeks have seen Tallahassee tempertures dipping into the 50s and 60s in the evenings; I am almost ready to start incorporating soup recipes into our dinner rotation again 🙂

No matter what kind of day I’ve had, I always have a difficult time falling asleep in the evenings and I am always on the hunt for tricks and tips that help facilitate the process.

In the past I have been accused of having a stationary obsession. I never gave the reason much thought, but apparently it is common for people of my age group.

I really want to get this shirt to wear to work on casual Friday; I feel like they should know.

The wide spread popularity of Pinterest has really required casual crafters to up the DIY ante for the holidays. Who can get away with simply carves pumpkins anymore when there are all of these alternative options?

Corn Maze!!!

Things got Basic the weekend before last. Inspired by the hint of chill in the air, I donned plaid one day and the next loaded up Andy, my mom and my friend Tori and headed to the corn maze at Aunt Louise’s Farm in Monticello, FL. Neither my mom nor myself had ever been to a corn maze before, so there was a decent amount of fluctuation between cautious excitement and down right childlike glee over the prospect of seeing what we could see.

11It was the first weekend the maze had been opened to the public, and since we all managed to get up and out early, we were literally the fist paying customers to walk the maze for 2016.13 12 14 The maze itself was a decent size and peppered with festive scarecrows, punny signs, and, oddly enough, tiny watermelons (I’m guessing a holdover from this summer?). 16 15 With the exception of a few spider web mishaps, we made it through the maze in good time, quite pleased with ourselves and ready to check out the rest of what the farm had to offer…4 1 …like the corn pit. My mom blatantly ignored the rule by throwing a handful of corn down my shirt pretty much as soon as I stepped foot into the pit. I tried to roll over to prevent more kernels from lodging in my bra, and she and Tori preceded to try and bury me. There was lots of laughter and additional shenanigans, much to the delight of our fellow farm visitors. And yes, even after a vigorous shaking of garments, I still found corn in my bra, shirt, and pants pockets when I changed for be that night.18 6 7 Of course I found and made friends with the farms’s feline petrol officer Angel. She was very sweet and quite fond of ear scratches.17 9 The farm is home to a number of different animals, and I spent the next couple of hours walking around with my cup of feed, making friends, and getting baby animal snuggles. My mom had been teasing me earlier about my dietary choices (being pescatarian) and trying to understand why I do what I do, so I told her as we were scratching the ears of the trio of baby calves “this is why”. I don’t mind other people doing what is right for them, but the deep love and appreciation I have for these fluffy and feathered cuties is the reason I gave up land meat. 21 20 23 24 25I was the tiniest bit afraid that the alpacas would spit at me, but the farm hand told us that these guys were supper mellow, and they only spit at people when they got scared 🙂26 28 we4Before heading home, we made a quick by the concession stand and picked up a couple of the farms famous cornbread waffles and relaxed under the shaded picnic tables. we1A really great trip, and it’s something I can see us doing again and again for years to come.