Friday, May 31, 2013

Friday's Fancies #131

Once again, Happy Friday you guys! On my agenda this weekend are trips to Denver, graduation bbq's, family shenanigans, pool time, and warm weather!! :) This week was kind of a let down as far as weather goes. Since yesterday we've had coastal winds blowing through the Front Range (did that stop be from getting some rays at the pool? Heeeeck no! I just pretended I was at the beach) and on Wednesday we had torrential downpours most of the day and so I sat at my kitchen table, sipped my extra hot coffee and watched my plants take a beating through the window. Oh yea and wore this stellar summer outfit. 

It was a lazy day by any means, and besides errands + the gym I felt no need to leave my home that day. So skinny jeans + bunny sweater it was. My 15yo brother thought my sweater was "hip". 

I leave you promptly with this week's fancies - make sure to visit Alison to join in! This week it is all about breaking fashion rules (which I'm pretty sure I broke several with my sweater) and how to break them - fashionably of course. This week we're waving a white flag to the "don't wear white after memorial day" (or is it labor day?) rule of thumb! Personally, I love simple and I love white and one of my favorite summer staples is a simple t-shirt dress. I pair them with anything from heels, to converse and make them work whether I'm running errands or attending a fancy brunch. The cut of a simple t-shirt dress works wonders with my boyish shaped body and I find, is a great alternative to a maxi dress or skirt. 

This week I doubled up my options, because what girl doesn't love variety? 

Winning in White

Merona shift dress / Valentino ankle strap wedge / H&M braided sandals, $23 / Proenza Schouler genuine leather handbag / Bridal clutch / BCBGMAXAZRIA statement necklace / Collar jewelry / J.Crew star sunglasses / Flora Bella brimmed hat / Reiss wide brim hat / Madewell

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend! See you on the sunny side and let me know what your favorite summer staple item is or how you wore white this weekend in the comments below. 

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Grab Your Waders, Girls...

...we're going fishing!

Okay not again...don't worry no more pictures of gross wide open mouthed fish. I shoulda warned ya. My bad.

Usually, when I tell people that I like to fish they give me either a snorted laugh, a raised eyebrow, or the stink eye "You like to fish?" ... Well yeah! Among a list of many other outdoor activities - camping, hiking, biking, climbing, .. in short, I have no problem leaving my make up bag at home for an extended period of time and not giving two shits about my wardrobe.

However, I am learning to collect a wardrobe for myself that works with my casual outdoor needs but let's me add a little flare to my ragidy fishing shorts. It helps that I have a weakness for accessories such as hats, and can add to my look without worrying about make-up and jewelry. Nevertheless, I can't really go anywhere without a watch on so I will always pick a simple add on. A little good sunscreen and 2nd-day hair  for my hat and we are ready to cast! (p.s. sleeveless blouses are also very nice for avoiding tan lines)

hat + watch: Target, sleeveless blouse: Forever21, shorts: LOFT - thrifted , shoes: Rue21

Home is Where the ... Fish are?

Today was one of those days that make me realize how much I freaking love living here. Fort Collins truly is the greatest place in the world (for me) and if you're close to me, you know I say this a lot. But it's true! And when Nick and I have days like this, sleeping in, lazy breakfast, and fishing by noon, we can't help but talk about our dreams of living here well, ... forever. Driving across town we can't help but be completely silent in the car with the windows down, letting the warm summer air blow through the car, and the feeling of "summer in Fort Collins" take over. It's a familiar and comforting feeling and for the first time in a long time, no other place feels more like home to me than this town. 

Arriving at Dixon Lake just below Horsetooth... umm, Nicholas looks oh so thrilled to be here. What up buttercup? 

It was only minutes before the dude had fish numero 1 (a tiny thing) and numero 2 shortly after. A little bit larger Bass but still, ... meh.


Snack + photo opp time. 


We made our way around the lake to a couple different spots where we stopped to fish. The weather was gorgeous and perfect temp - but a little over an hour we started wishing we'd gotten our butts out there sooner as the wind continued to pick up and clouds were starting to roll in over Horsetooth Reservoir. 


Here in Colorado, we build cool things out of branches and weeds are considered flowers. :) Although in my defense these were a lot more purple in real life.

Like I said, greatest place in the world. 

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Don't Wear White After Memorial Day

It's Tuuesday and a for a lot of you probably your workweek's Monday. I hope you all got to enjoy the long weekend - I feel like my news feed was nothing but pictures of bbq's, pool time, and mini vacations to warm places. And it's awesome! :) How can you not love summer time? 

Although I was ready to park myself at the pool with my dear neighbor friend Kayla for the afternoon, the weather only gave us about two hours before big dark clouds rolled in over Fort Collins and just hung out there making it windy for the rest of the afternoon. It was a bummer - but took the opportunity to put some more miles on the treadmill. I've hit my next level of endurance, strength, and flexibility and I love seeing the progress even if it's still only slight. 
I've finally gotten over the "I don't wanna work out" lazy-wall and am craving my running shoes every day, sometimes twice a day. I haven't yet figured out if it's the release it gives me to clear my anxieties and worries or if I've reached a point where I'm so ready to get fit there's no turning back, but I'm not going to really ask why and keep running. Because it feels amazing. 

My dear Nicholas is off today and we are heading out shortly to, what else, go fishing before the afternoon storms roll in. Later this afternoon we'll be visited by my brother Tyler who'll be staying with us for a couple days. School's out for summerrr! Now that should mean this will be the last time I'll post an outfit including my boyfriend jeans and lazy oversize sweater for a few months...right Colorado? 


knit sweater: Target, boyfriend jeans: Banana Republic, sneakers: Converse, shades: Target 

Happy Tuesday y'all.

Monday, May 27, 2013

In the Kitchen: Classic American Grilled Cheese Sandwich

Hello and happy Monday! Today we remember and honor the brave men and women who have and continue to fight for this country every day. I wish you a happy memorial day and express my gratitude, love and support to my cousin Wade who has bravely fought for this country several times and is no longer in active duty due to being severely injured last summer during a deployment in Afghanistan. We are so thankful that you are still with us, well and getting better every day. :) You are one crazy superman!

Here is a picture of this amazing family. Katie, my cousin + her husband Wade and their two adorable little boys Joe & Ethan. If you have hung around this blog awhile these beautiful faces are no strangers to you; Ethan is the godson of Nick + I and a frequent photo subject of mine :) They are the strongest, most inspiring and loving 4 people I have ever known. I just Love them!  

Nick and I had a great but fairly uneventful, Memorial Day weekend. On Saturday, I spent a little more time at my sister's helping her nest and taking care of last minute to-do's around her home, before baby Luca arrives. (By the end of June I will be an Aunt! :D *happydance* 
Later that evening we got together with our friends Tyler + Heidi for some relaxed hang out time. It was great to see them and catch up - it is going to be an exciting summer as those two will be married early October and it is going to be grand!! Once Sunday rolled around Nick and I escaped back to our Fort Collins haven in the early afternoon so we could enjoy some time outside, but the weather had other plans. It was overcast and too windy to fish, so we took Oli on a lazy walk and called it a day after cooking a classic American dish for dinner together. 

One of Nick's absolute favorites and a specialty of mine: 

American Grilled Cheese Sandwiches & Tomato Soup 

  • Your choice of sliced bread - tonight I used classic white bread. But I love to use delicious nut & oat bread that make giant sandwiches, as well. 
  • Butter
  • Cheese - again anything is game! Lately I love using spicy Habanero cheese instead of classic American cheese to bring a little zang to the dish. 
  • Salt & Pepper 
  • Tomato Soup - one day I will be domesticated enough to make my own but for now one of my favorites is Tomato Basil soup by Progresso. Then again Nick is a sucker for simple and classic so I'll make him Campbell's Tomato sometimes as well. 
  1. Heat your frying pan to medium heat and butter bread slices on either side. Add salt & pepper on one side to flavor, add your cheese and lay in pan once heated. (Let your cook go wild and add extras such as sliced turkey, ham or veggies to your sandwich!) 
  2. Cook each side until golden brown and delicious looking. While flipping toast, prepare your tomato soup and make sure to use milk instead of water if you are cooking with Campbell's Tomato soup - it's soo much better and creamier. 
  3. Serve & enjoy all in approx. 20 minutes cooking time. 
For dessert I whipped up some simple ready-to-bake chocolate chip cookies :) yum! Really no room for those in my diet + exercise pla- hahahahah yeah okay... 

And because I remembered to grab lemons, limes, and enough cucumber from the store last time I was out I finally made a huge pitcher full of cucumber-lemon water. It is so refreshing in the summer time and does wonders for water weight and hydration ladies and gents ;)

I have come across a couple different versions of this. The other main thing to add is mint leaves if preferred. Chop up 1 cucumber, 2 lemons, and 1-2 limes, add to water pitcher and let it sit in your fridge overnight in order to let the lemon and cucumber flavor the water. You can easily make small to-go versions of this right into your own water bottle over ice water and let the flavor soak in on your way to work, school, etc. 

While I'm still looking forward to some pool time today with my dear friend Kayla today, Nick has to work a regular day. I hope you have a great Monday and would love to hear and read about your Memorial Day weekend highlights and festivities! As well as your favorite grilled cheese flavors and cooking secrets. 

Friday, May 24, 2013

Friday's Fancies #1

Hello and Happy Friday! I am being a little lazy getting ready for the weekend this morning - sadly Nick and I decided to cancel our camping trip this morning. Tonight's temps are just a little colder than we'd like, and since Red Feather's borders our backyard we figure we have aaall summer to go.

This is my first time playing along with Friday's Fancies! And if I could live in yellow jean shorts, striped tees, and two strap sandals all summer: I would. Happy Memorial Day weekend everyone!

Memorial Day Weekend Wardrobe

Sunny Memo

I'm sending you positive thoughts for the day, as a reminder that we all need uplifting words at times. I happen to love quotes (woah watch out!) especially positive, inspirational, and happy ones and keep them close to me when I stumble across one that really gets my attention. I find that when I'm having trouble keeping my chin up and tending to my sanity in this roller-coaster life we live, I will recite and repeat positive statements to myself. Whether it's while I'm running or working out, driving in the car, waiting in the line at the grocery store, or simply have a quiet few minutes to myself. It works people.
Choose to be happy. BE happy. 

The best is when you receive uplifting words from others of course, and today I was that lucky. I had a much needed phone date with my dear cousin and friendsoulmate Katie and she had a healthy bowl of encouragement and inspiration to dish out to me. I tried resisting a little, but in the end I know she's right and it felt great to have someone remind you of your talents, tell you your awesome and encourage you to go kick butt. It's a blessing to have family & friends that know you enough to push you a little harder than you might originally like, past your pitiful self that is off on the sidelines and most likely the only person standing in your way to brighter days.

Happy Friday. BE HAPPY.

"Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now." 
 -Johann Wolfgang von Goethe 

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Mid Week Round Up


and happy gloomy Thursday to you if you live in Northern Colorado. We are promised some rays this afternoon, but for now, I have my patio door only cracked and am taking care of my chores in my boyfriend jeans and long sleeved sweater. It's chilli outside! So Oli and I decided to postpone our walk til Nick gets home and we can hopefully get some sunshine time :)
I hope you're having a good week - no matter where ya are. As productive as I might have sounded I'm having a rough day and am trying my darnedest to hang in there. The gloomy weather is a comfort when you're in a mood where your only interest is bitching and throwing yourself a pity party. But only the flip side, the weekend is fast approaching! And tomorrow I'll be busy planning and packing for our overnight camping trip at Red Feather's - woop woop! Just Nicholas, Oli and I heading out for our first trip of the season for a quick one-nighter in the mountains :) So there's plenty to be happy for.

I can happily say that I tried another one of my hobbies and passions on for size this week, besides blogging here again, ... my photography! This past weekend I took a few maternity and family photos for my sister and her husband.

They turned out great and it felt amazing to be behind a lens again. Check out some of my favorites here.

On Wednesday I got to hang out with these cutie patooties over coffee and muffins and enjoy some front porch play time.


And took advantage of the gloomy weather breaks by digging up a nail art trick from Pinterest I've been wanting to try.

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Not half bad. Lately I am very much into straight lines, edges, chevron, simplicity. I've been wearing my gold diamond shaped earrings with just about everything. And apparently I was in a "red" mood this week, because I wore them Tuesday with my diamond patterned red blouse + white shorts. Next time I'll provide a better image, tut mir leid.

Wish you all a happy Thursday afternoon.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

As of Late

hello and holy wow it's been a year. not quite but close enough. and shameful all together. it's going to be a bit of a journey reconnecting with this blog. But I have missed it and look forward to sharing with you dearly. 

And as of late, despite life's trivial curve balls, I've found myself having pretty fantastic days. One after the other. Simple, satisfying, productive, beautiful, just wonderful, days. And today was certainly one of those wunderbaren Tage. After I enjoyed a girl's day with my sister in Denver and Nick some good ol' guy time with his dad for the first half of the weekend, I came home and enjoyed Sunday morning breakfast with the boys, took a walk, and did some home improvement on our humble abode with Nicholas. 

I took an okay close up of a budding tree. 

The Pineapple Express came through Foco.

Baby pine cones. 

Simple, yet lovely. But Nick and I were so proud of our plant job we stood in the kitchen all late afternoon staring out the patio door while we cooked pizza + salad for dinner. I was pretty darn content. And as of late, I consider that a pretty amazing day.