Sunday, December 30, 2012

in the kitchen: NYE foodie inspiration

I hope all of you have been having a lovely holiday week-we had such a nice Christmas this year and I am definitely feeling extra blessed for my friends and family (both near and far). 

With the Christmas holiday just barely gone, New Year's Eve is already tomorrow! Ry and I have ventured up to Minnesota-first a stop in Minneapolis to see a few friends and then we are heading to our friend's cabin for our NYE celebration! I am SO excited to see everyone-it will be the first time we have all been together since Ry and I made the move to Milwaukee. So along with ringing in the new year, we are also getting a nice lil reunion out of it to :)

What are your plans for New Years Eve? Will you be painting the town red? Going to a friends? Or maybe just having a cozy night at home? No matter your destination for the celebration, having some scrumptious snacks is always a must-whether you're the host or the guest! 
Here are a few ideas I found that you could try out....

Monday, December 24, 2012

christmas traditions

I think that one of the best parts about any holiday are the traditions that come along with it, especially over Christmas. Whether it is a certain dish you make for dinner, singing carols, or watching your favorite holiday movie-all these little things bring us together and remind us to appreciate the time we have with one another. When we were little we used to get new pajamas on Christmas eve (gotta look your best on Christmas morning!) and even though that tradition has come and gone, we still have a few that we continue on with....

1. On Christmas Eve, we always have a simple meal of two kinds of soup. Of course, when I say simple, I don't mean boring! My dad makes our favorite seafood stew, Cioppino, and usually a mushroom soup. This year my dad asked if my brother, sister, and I would make the second soup, so we decided to try this Roasted Corn Chowder soup...I think it will be delicious! And of course, we have our homemade French bread

2. Hanging our stockings. I'm sure this is a pretty standard tradition in a lot of homes over the holidays, but I love that we still take the time to hang them up and of course, say what we hope for in the coming year. We still tease my mom for her classic line of wishing for "world peace", but I'd say it's a pretty perfect wish. 

3. Monkey bread. Who ever invented this delicious breakfast treat, gets a big ol' high five and two thumbs up from me! I can't remember a Christmas where this sugary dough treat didn't make an appearance and I wouldn't want it any other way! 

4. Christmas day=afternoon at the movies! After all the presents have been opened, we head out to the movies. This year, we voted to go see Les Miserables and I am SO excited to see it. I have been a huge fan of the play since I was little-still have the cassette tape around here somewhere :) 

I hope that you have some holiday traditions of your own to enjoy these next few days...stay warm, happy, and merry! 

Friday, December 21, 2012

only a few days 'til Christmas!

we finalllllyyy got some real snow here last night, which of course did not make for very fun driving, but it sure does look pretty! I know that some people were lucky enough to get a snow day outta of it, so now is the time to take advantage of the extra free time and get out (or stay in!) to enjoy the holiday season!
A few ideas for your snow day and the last few days before Christmas...

last minute decorating: holiday sprig wreath
Chocolate chip shortbread cookies cookie recipe
Homemade hot chocolate
Christmas movie marathon! (It's a Wonderful life is one of my favorites)
Whether or not you have a snow day, I hope you find time for some fun holiday activities and maybe some of your family traditions this weekend! Stay warm :)
merry, merry...happy, happy!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

an early (and very cute!) christmas present

well clearly I have been m.i.a from the love type thing world, but with the holidays (and maybe the end of the world?!) just around the corner, life has been busy! I am 99.999% done with all my Christmas shopping and happy to report I was able to make a few etsy purchases-always good to support the little guys....getting very close to having an apartment...lots of christmas card sending...baking, okay just eating cookies...and most importantly, we welcomed a very special and adorable new member to the family-Bailey! He is just the sweetest pup anyone could ask for and I am so so glad that we are able to give him a home...he's already settled in and feelin' right at home. It is most certainly a very happy holiday here at our house! 

Monday, December 17, 2012

towards the sunshine

hoping that those who have suffered losses in the past week can find the sunshine despite all the shadows...

Saturday, December 15, 2012

hollywood heroines

the New York Times featured a piece about the  "hollywood heroines" of this year which was great to read, but even better is the Wide Awake project, a "video gallery of dreams and transformations" featuring thirteen actresses that made their own marks on the world of film this are a two of my favorite, featuring Quvenzhane Wallis of Beasts of the Southern Wild (so amazing in this!) and Anne Hathaway, who I can.not. wait. to see in Les Mis!
Check out the rest of the shorts here and some gorgeous still shots from the films here...

Monday, December 10, 2012

twenty something

As a twenty-something, often times I get overwhelmed with just how quickly time has past and the idea of almost being closer to 30 than 20, is unsettling. Don’t ask me why, it’s just one of those irrational/over thought and probably unnecessary “fears.” So what’s a twenty-something supposed to do?? Well lucky for me (and you!) just the other day, one of my girlfriends shared this pretty entertaining article from Thought Catalog, “21 Ways You Should Take Advantage of Your 20s”.

 The overall message of the article? Take charge of your life! Whether it’s a change in careers, learning new skills (seriously, learn how to cook!), getting involved in sports “you played in elementary school” (aka kickball), traveling, unplugging from your gadgets…it’s time to take charge and make choices that will give you the chance to really live it up and smile all the way through your twenties…which is exactly what I intend to do! In case you don't have time to read the whole article, here are a few of my favorite suggestions:

#19. Take road trips. Sitting in a car for days on end isn’t something your body was designed to do forever.

#7. Play a sport you played in elementary school. Kickball, dodgeball. There are leagues for these games now. Get on it.

#3. Never turn down an open bar. Seek them out and make them a priority. Indulging in open bars when you’re older isn’t appropriate because a) people will think you have an alcohol problem and b) you’re supposed to have enough money to afford your own alcohol.
#4. If you’re unhappy and someone offers you a way out, take it. You don’t owe your first job years of loyalty and your first-born; you don’t have to stay in your city just because you’re on a first-name basis with the bodega guy. Do what feels right; the initial fear will give way to excitement.

Happy Monday!

p.s. for more insight on life in your twenties, check out this article! Pretty hilarious & totally relatable...
p.p.s for EVEN MORE twenty-something fun, get a digital copy of  “How to be a 20-Something,” featuring a collection of short stories

Saturday, December 8, 2012

one year ago...

my sister and I were on our way to Guatemala and  Belize for one heck of a Bryde sister adventure! We had such an amazing time...exploring Antigua...climbing a volcano...kayaking (and sinking while kayaking!)...having the best smoothies ever...Casa del Mundo at Lake farms...snorkeling in Belize...visiting the Mayan ruins...and so much more! 

I can't wait until the next adventure!!! Love you sister! 

Friday, December 7, 2012

1000 Shillings.

Well whaddya know, it’s Friday! Thank goodness-I’ve got Christmas shopping to do, cookies to bake and trying to find an apartment aka

Before taking off on whatever weekend activities you might have in store, I am really excited to tell you about an inspiring organization called 1000 Shillings that I hope you will consider supporting in some way, shape or form…’tis the season of giving, right??

So what is 1000 Shillings? This “international development organization”, created by Rebecca and Alexis, is working with six women of the Namatala slum in Uganda to empower them, give them a voice, and educate through mentorship!

1000 Shillings allows the women to earn income through their handcrafted jewelry in order to become truly self-sufficient and provide for their families. Some of the ladies hope to start a business, like Annette who wants to be able to sell rice-flour, and others simply want to ensure their kids can have an education and food to eat everyday. I encourage you to read the stories of these six women-I loved learning about who they were, the struggles they are working to overcome and the dreams they have for themselves and their families.

And the jewelry! I mean who doesn’t want to buy a gorgeous piece AND help make someone’s life better?! I bet some of you have a mom, sister, aunt, grandma etc. that would be thrilled to have any of these handcrafted beauties….my personal favorite is the Veronica!
I know that it can be hard to support every great organization out there, so if purchasing jewelry from 1000 Shillings doesn’t work for you, that’s okay. Support their efforts by following them on Facebook, Twitter, or check out their boards on Pinterest and pin your favorite pieces....all easy and free :)

I hope you will take a few minutes to visit their site and get to know more about this wonderful organization (thanks in advance for all those who do!) Happy Friday!

*all photos belong to

Monday, December 3, 2012

bring on the holiday tunes

Okay, where is the snow?! Once December hits, I have fully prepared myself (mentally) for the long winter and yet, it's been oddly warm and very un-Christmas like. One of the top things needed for my holiday season to feel complete is some of that white what's a girl to do to keep the holiday spirit going?! Christmas music of course! Lucky for me, one of my favorite Christmas music spots, Hey, it's Christmas!, just released their Vol. 3 for your listening pleasure...for free! All of the tracks are covered by a variety of different bands (a lot that I am still getting to know/discover) which makes it a fun mix-up of the traditional Christmas tunes. Even better, you can check out Vol. 1 and Vol. 2 if you are really wanting to bring out the holiday spirit.

Take a home...or at your next holiday party! Feel free to share your favorite holiday music source too :)  

back from chicago!

my apologies for disappearing on you! 
just busy with life in general and took a little trip to chicago to see some of my friends. here are few snapshots from the weekend-it was full of laughs, stories, lots of good food, and enjoying the spring-like weather-i feel pretty lucky to be able to have such easy access to a place that holds so many good memories....hope you had a fun weekend too and here's to making it a great week! 

(all photos edited with afterglow aka my new fav camera app!)