Friday, July 29, 2016


Happy Friday! Is everyone ready for the weekend? I sure am, our heatwave is finally suppose to break this week - I'm looking forward to some temperatures in the 80's.  I'm sure by now everyone's watched the trailer for Gilmore Girls (here) - but did you also see the preview for The Hills reunion next week??

Onto what I'm loving this week.  I just ordered this black trapeze dress - it looks really comfortable and you can always use another LBD - The red dress is another classic style - very comfortable and comes in many colors.  Both purses are perfect to add to a fall wardrobe as is the jewelry.  The Tory Burch boots are part of the sale (a great deal!) and the nude booties are the perfect staple shoe.

Happy weekend; cheers! xx

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Top Ten Celebrity Favorite Restaurants in LA

After our most recent trip to California, I've had a lot of comments and emails about how we've seen so many celebrities so today I've compiled a list of some of my favorite celebrity hangouts.  Through concierge recommendations, always reading on Daily Mail and occasional googling it's not too hard to sip wine and enjoy a meal where your favorite celebrities do.  Whether your hoping to see a celebrity or not (it's enjoyable enough to just dine at their favorites) - these places all have delicious food and great settings which make for a great night out.

Nobu Malibu 
The location is key to this location and they limit their reservations so it's a quieter setting and they also limit your table time so you don't hog the table after your meal but there are couches to lounge/take in the view near the front entrance.  Everything on the menu is delicious - coming from a non-sushi lover.

Make a reservation well in advance and if your staying at a hotel nearby (Beverly Hills) have the concierge to it for you.  They have a little bit of everything on the menu and it's all delicious & there's always a buzzing crowd here.

The Nice Guy 
A current Hollywood hotspot and I wouldn't recommend unless you have an extra night open or just want to see the setting.  Like Nobu, they limit the reservations so it's never too crowded and you must have a reservation to get in the door.  The food is average so it's definitely the exclusive setting that has the appeal.

The Beverly Hills Hotel (Cabana Cafe, Polo Lounge)
Even if not staying in the hotel, this landmark is highly famous so popping in for a lunch at the Cabana Cafe near the pool or dining on the patio in the Polo Lounge is a must - the settings are each fantastic and the food doesn't disappoint.

Sur, Villa Blanca & Pump
If your a Bravo fan these three are for you.  In my opinion Villa Blanca has the best food and setting, Sur was average - but it's always fun to see the "set" of Vanderpump Rules and Pump has a garden that's a great setting for cocktails.  Lisa & Ken are in and out of these all the time so your chances of seeing them or someone else from the show are better but not guaranteed.

We've tried our fairshare of steakhouses and this is hands down our favorite from the appetizers to entrees/shared sides and the classic buttenrcake dessert.  You can opt for the steakhouse which has two differently styled floors and a balcony or the penthouse (which has a DJ and a louder scene).  Other good choices are Cut at the Beverly Wilshire or Boa (delicious drinks).

The Ivy
I'd say it's safe to say many celebrities have dined at this classic spot with easy access for the paparazzi to snap them outside on the patio.  Not as much anymore since it's lacking privacy but it's a darling setting with fresh florals everywhere, unique plate designs and complimentary champagne upon arrival and cookies upon leaving which makes for a great lunch spot.  An option for another classic, delicious and easy lunch spot is Nate n Al's steps away from Rodeo Drive.

Tower Bar 
Another spot with a little bit of everything on the menu plus an ice cream bar menu for dessert.  It's a more intimate setting with no photography/cell phones allowed which gives you a chance to really focus on the conversation.

Il Pastaio
Located steps from Rodeo Drive with a wrap around shaded patio this is another classic lunch spot with all the usual Italian menu items.  Other popular Italian spots include Madeo and Dan Tanas.

Celebrities love their sushi and Sugar Fish has a few locations - only offering sushi.  If you're like me and like sushi spots but not sushi then Koi and Katsuya are delicious and have great vibes.

If you're ever in the greater Los Angeles area and hoping to either spot a celebrity or dine like one, these were some of my favorite go to's.  If you need any other recommendations to the area, let me know! xx

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Here's What: Happenings {Summer Edition}

What we've been up to... 
Enjoying summer to the max.  We had our annual trip out to California and kicked off the summer with a new destination, gotten in some time at the lake, and enjoyed a few "Dining Under the Stars nights" but other than that we've been having fun doing the classic summer things - ice cream nights, dining al fresco, family walks, rocking on our patio, etc.

The sea breeze is one of the best parts of summer.

What I'm loving... 
Being home!  After managing a long distance relationship, after we got married, we made a "two weekends home a month rule" no matter what - except with all summer has to offer, we're usually home very few weekends during these warmer months.  This year we've made it a priority to log in some relaxing weekends at home (yes, at least two a month!!!) and they are becoming my favorites.

Nights with nothing to do, impromptu plans...

Hosting Mexican night.

What I'm wearing... 
Anything that I can stay cool in, ha! But seriously, I'll be happy to see this heat wave go.  I'm a dress girl so I'll be sad to see these summer months go and I'm continuing to love all the florals for the season but also toned down neutrals.  I'm getting in all my Lilly wearing before the temperature changes.

With the Nordstrom Sale and stores stocking the fall inventory I've put an end to my summer shopping and am slowly stocking up for fall.

Having a Lilly moment.

What I'm excited about... 
I'm starting to get the itch for fall and the start of that new season... and football season - I can't wait to be back up in State College cheering on the Nittany Lions!

Right after the end of summer we'll celebrate our second anniversary (I can't believe it's almost been two years!) and we've been debating how to celebrate and I think landed on a long weekend location - we were considering heading back to our favorite, California, but I think we're going to save that for the winter and keep it within an easy flight.

Cheers to almost two years.
romper (40% off) / wedges (30% off)

What I'm looking forward to next month... 
Usually August is pretty busy for us - things always get crazier as the summer weekends run out - so this year we tried to keep our calendar as simple as possible for this month.

After a break in weddings all summer we're gearing up to enjoy celebrating a few more starting in August.

I've quickly mentioned before that the end of the summer marks the end of our 50ish run at our family lake house so we'll enjoy a final family weekend at the old cottage and prepare for our recent new alternative (which I'll be excited to share soon...)

Stella enjoying the lake view.

Spring Edition 
Winter Edition

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Balsamic Strawberry Toasted Crostini

These little bites are one of my new favorite appetizers.  I saw this recipe back in the spring and thought they'd be the perfect summer treat so we tried them out as an appetizer for Fourth of July and they now rank pretty high on the appetizers list.

1 loaf french bread
olive oil
1 pound ricotta cheese
2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon fresh cracked pepper
2 tablespoons aged balsamic vinegar (or light balsamic dressing)

Chop the strawberries and place in a bowl with the balsamic vinegar to marinate for about 20 minutes.

Preheat the broiler and slice the french brea into even slices.

Brush olive oil onto each slice then broil for five minutes or less (watch close so it doesn't burn).

Mix together the ricotta cheese, honey and fresh cracked pepper.

Top each bread slice with the ricotta cheese mixture and top with the strawberry mixture then drizzle with a little bit of balsamic dressing and serve right away.

Enjoy! xx 

Monday, July 25, 2016

On the Lake

We spent a great - very hot - weekend at the lake.  My parents best friends were in town to see the original house one more time before the summer is over and many family members were up.  We beat the heat by being in the water as much as possible and Saturday evening a storm blew in that knocked the power out for the rest of the night so it was an interesting scene going house to house with flashlights.  We indulged in all the good lake food, grazed on appetizers and had great company.

Thanks for stopping by; have a great day! xx

Friday, July 22, 2016

Loving: Summer Neutrals

Welcome to another summer weekend (almost)! While I know it'll be Monday before we know it, I feel like the summer weekdays are flying by too - I can't believe we're almost to the final month of the summer.

With late summer comes the thought of fall and summer neutrals are what I have my eye on - I don't feel guilty purchasing a new piece for summer if it can transition into the fall as well.  There's something classic about the white/tan/cream and these colors can work for anything.

& a few remaining Nordstrom Sale favorites...
With the sale open to everyone today, I thought I'd share a couple more favorites.  I thought last year's sale had more to offer so I didn't go overboard this year but I was very pleased with my purchases and have only a few returns to take back out of the orders.

Enjoy your weekend; cheers! xx

Thursday, July 21, 2016

McCarthy Salad

While in California we fell in love with a salad for lunch at the hotel - it's one of the Polo Lounge's "classic items" - the McCarthy Salad (pictured above).  Made with romaine, organic chicken, eggs, roasted beets, bacon, avocado, cheddar, tomatoes and balsamic vinaigrette.  This became a repeat lunch item.

Since we've been home we've done an imitation version and had it multiple times already for lunches and dinners.  I prefer chopped salads as opposed to huge lettuce pieces so this one is perfect for me.  The key is to use shredded lettuce for the greens, place all your toppings on top and then gently blend everything together.  

We used the same items from the McCarthy (sometimes cheese blocks, sometimes shredded) and added red onions as well as a delicious low calorie balsamic dressing - just as delicious as the real one! 


Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Looks & Life Lately {24}

Happy Hour session - cheese plates and peppers/dip are a go-to around here but the watermelon bites area  new favorite - recipe coming soon.

The best weekends kick off when out of town friends pass by and spend the night.

Shrimp broils are becoming our favorite and this time we tried it homemade - more work but still as delicious.

Cruising around with my Stella pup.

Enjoying a night on the lower deck - our favorite spot this season.

Getting use out of my Lilly Pulitzer postcards that were a surprise in the mail.

A fun night hosting neighbors at the Saloon.

Lazy summer days with Stella.

I'm starting to get the itch for fall but I'll miss these summer nights on the deck.

Rainy day feelings in the office.

The Mets were in town the other night so of course Derek enjoyed our night out to the Phillies game and it was my cousins first MLB game so the whole family came out! 

dress | crossbody | flip flops | sunglasses (on sale for $14!)

and the daily dose of Stella...