Amazing, Incredible Pickle Dip


pickledip

Hollllllllly cow is this stuff delicious. The stuff dreams are made of in my personal opinion. It takes about 10 minutes to whip up...and that could be because I'm a slow pickle cutter. The darn things are so slippery.

YOU NEED:

1 package 8oz cream cheese

1 16oz tub sour cream

12 petite pickles

3 sprigs of dill

1 teaspoon garlic salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

1 teaspoon red pepper flakes

Corn Chips

Ok....ready for the instructions?

1. Chop up your pickles into small pieces- not so fine that you would lose them in the dip but small enough to be bite size.

2. Dump everything listed above, including your chopped pickles into a mixing bowl and stir

3. Eat and eat until you have to switch to elastic pants.

On second thought, start with wearing stretchy pants. It elimintes a whole step!

Let's Make Mondays Interesting


A Red Rocks sunset before the Avett Brothers a couple of weeks ago.

A Red Rocks sunset before the Avett Brothers a couple of weeks ago.

Man oh man is this summer killing my poor little blog. So many weeks apart! Ive built a bed, sewed a quilt, refashioned a dress and have yet to talk about them here. It's coming!

In the mean time, have a WONDERFUL Monday!

Things designers never put in their homes.

Upgrade your lager with this PICKLE TRICK! Genius.

Trick to decluttering that doesn't involve that magical method.

Addicting series covering both sides of a breakup.

Is it a trip or a vacation? I don't have kids but still laughed so hard I cried.

A list of underrated books.

Have you bought your eclipse glasses?

Grown Up Keychains


I hold on to weird keychain attachments. Right now, I still have a rubber bracelet on one set of my keys that says 'Patriot Pride'. That in itself is fine...but I got the bracelet in high school. It's over a decade old. 

It's terribly mundane to want to upgrade your keyring but summer always reminds me what a pain it is to carry around big keyrings. Just this morning, I tore half of my nail off trying to pop my car key off of the spiral ring. The easy solution to this is a valet key ring. I'm in the market for a cute one. Here's what i've found so far:

And this is literally IT for cute valet keychains. Where am I missing? Someone else has to have this problem and be upset that most of the options on the market are ugly. Right? If you have a suggestion, help a girl out!

Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree: A Reformed Black Thumb's Guide to Not Killing It


Never in my life have I kept a plant alive as long as I've kept my fiddle leaf fig tree thriving. I am SO PROUD of it. Every new leaf that sprouts is a personal victory. I've kept it going for 2.5 YEARS! YEARS! So, I wanted to quickly share a few things I've learned so that you too can have this wild sense of accomplishment.

I ordered my tree on Amazon. Yup. It was $18 and came in a little box. These trees can get pricey in big box stores so I figured worst case scenario I was out the cost of lunch.

(It's up to $35 right now, but I believe it fluctuates.)

I was pretty surprised when it showed up intact. I was half expecting to get shipped a twig.

Things I've learned while caring for my tree:

- Put it in a bright spot- but not too much sun so the leaves don't cook

- Spin your tree around when you see all of the leaves tilt toward the sunlight (every 3 weeksish?)

- Only water it when the soil is dry to the first knuckle of your pointer finger. Basically, for me, this means I water my tree once a week. 

- Dust the leaves every so often...they collect dust just like shelves do.

- WHEN YOU WANT BRANCHES, chop the top of your tree off. YES! Chop it OFF! I recently learned this trick from my mom, plant goddess, and it worked! My tree did nothing for about 3 weeks and I was convinced I killed it. But then! Just on Monday...

I count 4! 4 new branches! So now, instead of my tree growing straight up with one long trunk, it will stem out and begin growing multiple branches. 

Before getting this plant, I heard they were notoriously hard to care for. I really haven't found that to be the case...and this is coming from a girl that just killed her mint plant. (Mint is notoriously hard to kill. No idea why mine died. Story for another day?)

Go forth and Fiddle Leaf! I believe in you!

SALES! SALES! SALES!


EVERYTHING IS ON SALE!

Handbags:

Henri Bendel: Classic wardrobe addition.

Rebecca Minkoff: I've always wanted one of these.

Kate Spade: I love the buckle on this one!

Michael Kors: Work tote WITH a shoulder strap?!

Marc Jacobs: THIS. and THIS.

Clothing:

J.Crew: They still have Liberty collabs in stock.

Zara: This is a fun twist on a skirt. Pull off leather in the summer. This with some black skinny jeans could be wonderful.

Banana Republic: I want someone to pull this off at a wedding. And I want this one for daywear.

We can't forget about my new favorite store: Abercrombie + Fitch. We haven't talked about this yet- and in fact, a whole post could be devoted to my rediscovery of them. They're different now. Probably not ethically which is a bummer, but their inventory! They have SALES! Right now I love this, this, this, this, and this.

Shoes:

Anthropologie: Really love these. 

Steve Madden: I've been wanting platforms. Perfect for weddings.

Nordstrom: Love these. These would go with everything.

 

What am I missing? HAPPY SHOPPING!

Floating Shelves Next To the Fireplace


fireplacebefore

A few weeks ago, while Phil was out of town, I built us some floating shelves next to the fireplace. It was a real girl power moment for me- which is why i'm taking a moment to gloat here. 

I'm done now :)

Above, you see where we started. Beige, arches, and a weird narrow wall next to the fireplace.

Todayyyyy......

We built a tube in the fireplace to run all of our TV and device chords through. They had been sitting in a jumble on a cheap target bookshelf since we built up the fireplace and I was sick of looking at them.

fireplace after

Beauty and the beast right here.

The final product is much better. But I'm still stuck- I still have some ugly chords and devices to hide. Right now I'm working with a foam board hut I fashioned to get them out of sight. It kinddd of works but then again, I feel like I'm lying to myself.

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Finding a solution to hide everything is probably top of the list project wise. Maybe a breadbox looking thing could work? The shelf is pretty narrow to follow the contours of the fireplace. 

Stay tuned!


All art by allieschmidt.com, vases from Target, frame from Target, pillows self sewn.

PSA: Double Decker Cookie Cake


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The VERY BEST thing has happened to mass retail bakeries. DOUBLE DECKER COOKIE CAKE! I had no idea this beautiful creation even existed until a few weeks ago. Who needs a cronut when one of the best desserts has just been brought to the next level? 

Where can you find it, you ask? Sam's Club! For $18 for a sheet cake!!!

No wonder Mrs. Fields (RIP) is going out of business. 

This makes me seriously reconsider my Costco membership...

Straw Bags for Under $50

I've been wanting to get onboard with the straw bag trend but it seems like everyone I love was at least $100. I'm not going to pretend like I think this will be a lasting trend. My 7th-grade purse was a wicker purse with watermelons on it. I think that was the last time I considered a bag like this. 

Anywho- I've rounded up a few options I think could make the final cut for my closet.


This one has redeeming qualities because once it's served its purpose as a purse- it would work really well as a blanket basket in the living room or a pot cover for a plant.


This looks like a fun take on the wicker bag- I love the shape of it. It reminds me of the more expensive versions i've been falling for. 


This one looks like it could sass up any outfit. I'm on the fence as to whether or not the colors would drive me nuts if they weren't matching my outfit. Or if it would drive me nuts if I matched too much. Probably too much baggage for a little bag but I loved it all the same.


This one probably takes the cake for me. Super affordable. Looks a bit more durable than the more open weaves above. AND it's a Target, a store I go to at least once a week so it has the potential to be an instant gratification purchase.

Sign me up!

My Netflix Queue


What are you watching these days? I found a few shows worth binging-

Travelers::

The last surviving humans discover how to send consciousness back in time to the 21st century. Inhabiting seemingly random people, the "travelers" work together to try to save the human race.

Love::

When his cheating girlfriend leaves him, people-pleasing nice-guy Gus moves into a trendy apartment complex inhabited by lots of college students. A chance encounter introduces him to wild-child Mickey, also recently single, and who despises her job in radio. Though wildly different, the two are drawn to each other. In the end, their differences may be what help them figure out just what love is.

Riverdale::

Now this one is trashy and good to watch while doing something else too like sewing/painting/crafting.

While navigating the troubled waters of sex, romance, school and family, teen Archie and his gang become entangled in a dark Riverdale mystery. Based off of the Archie comic series, you recognize all your favorite characters.

......

I'm also still loving some of the older series that came out with new episodes-

Orange Is The New Black

House of Cards

 

 

 

Let's Make Mondays Interesting


The Roman Forum on our trip to Italy

Hi friends! It's been a little while! Here's hoping we don't have such a big break again :)

A website of dad jokes..

The museum of failure.

I complimented my friend on a few pieces she was wearing and they were all from here. Kate, you have a great taste.

Best romcoms of all time. I love so many of these movies.

Wonder is becoming a movie!!

Gorgeous , beautiful, wonderful, trash can flowers.

Scientists carry some prettty weird things onto planes.

Happy holiday Monday!

On my Nightstand: May


I'm really excited about my book selection this month. Everything I chose has really strong reviews leading me to think I have a few page turners. 

Exit West by Mohsin Hamid

"n a country teetering on the brink of civil war, two young people meet—sensual, fiercely independent Nadia and gentle, restrained Saeed. They embark on a furtive love affair, and are soon cloistered in a premature intimacy by the unrest roiling their city. When it explodes, turning familiar streets into a patchwork of checkpoints and bomb blasts, they begin to hear whispers about doors—doors that can whisk people far away, if perilously and for a price. As the violence escalates, Nadia and Saeed decide that they no longer have a choice. Leaving their homeland and their old lives behind, they find a door and step through. . . .

Dead Letters by Caite Dolan-Leach

"Ava Antipova has her reasons for running away: a failing family vineyard, a romantic betrayal, a mercurial sister, an absent father, a mother slipping into dementia. In Paris, Ava renounces her terribly practical undergraduate degree, acquires a French boyfriend and a taste for much better wine, and erases her past. Two years later, she must return to upstate New York. Her twin sister, Zelda, is dead.

Even in a family of alcoholics, Zelda Antipova was the wild one, notorious for her mind games and destructive behavior. Stuck tending the vineyard and the girls’ increasingly unstable mother, Zelda was allegedly burned alive when she passed out in the barn with a lit cigarette. But Ava finds the official explanation a little too neat. A little too Zelda. Then she receives a cryptic message—from her sister.

Just as Ava suspected, Zelda’s playing one of her games. In fact, she’s outdone herself, leaving a series of clues about her disappearance. With the police stuck on a red herring, Ava follows the trail laid just for her, thinking like her sister, keeping her secrets, immersing herself in Zelda’s drama and her outlandish circle of friends and lovers. Along the way, Zelda forces her twin to confront their twisted history and the boy who broke Ava’s heart. But why? Is Zelda trying to punish Ava for leaving, or to teach her a lesson? Or is she simply trying to write her own ending?

All Over The Place by Geraldine DeRuiter

"Hilarious, irreverent, and heartfelt, All Over the Place chronicles the years Geraldine spent traveling the world after getting laid off from a job she loved. Those years taught her a great number of things, though the ability to read a map was not one of them. She has only a vague idea of where Russia is, but she now understands her Russian father better than ever before. She learned that what she thought was her mother's functional insanity was actually an equally incurable condition called "being Italian." She learned what it's like to travel the world with someone you already know and love--how that person can help you make sense of things and make far-off places feel like home. She learned about unemployment and brain tumors, lost luggage and lost opportunities, and just getting lost in countless terminals and cabs and hotel lobbies across the globe. And she learned that sometimes you can find yourself exactly where you need to be--even if you aren't quite sure where you are."

We Were The Lucky Ones by Georgia Hunter

"It is the spring of 1939 and three generations of the Kurc family are doing their best to live normal lives, even as the shadow of war grows closer. The talk around the family Seder table is of new babies and budding romance, not of the increasing hardships threatening Jews in their hometown of Radom, Poland. But soon the horrors overtaking Europe will become inescapable and the Kurcs will be flung to the far corners of the world, each desperately trying to navigate his or her own path to safety. 
 
As one sibling is forced into exile, another attempts to flee the continent, while others struggle to escape certain death, either by working grueling hours on empty stomachs in the factories of the ghetto or by hiding as gentiles in plain sight. Driven by an unwavering will to survive and by the fear that they may never see one another again, the Kurcs must rely on hope, ingenuity, and inner strength to persevere. 

5 Minute DIY: Running Medal Holder


For all the races i've run, I;ve never had a great place to put my medals. For the last 5 years, they've hung on a coat rack on the back of a little-used door. Without fail, when that door was opened, the cacophony of clanging metal startled me every time. 

Sooo....8 years too late, I present to you, my medal hanger.

You'll need:

Leather

Scissors

Dowel Rod (saw to cut to length)

Nails

Cut 2 leather pieces into 2.5 inch x 7 inch strips

Fold them in half and hang them on the wall with brass nails. I found studs to nail into and I suggest you do too.

Once you hang the loops, thread your dowel through the loop.

Hang up your dowel.

Thread those medals and call it a day! It actually takes 5 minutes. 5! whoopie!

Let's Make Mondays Interesting: Volume 25


Bachelorette Carolyn forging through the trees in Saugatuck, Michigan.

Bachelorette Carolyn forging through the trees in Saugatuck, Michigan.

MAY! We've made it back to warmer months! My soul is summer, through and through. It feels good to be back where the sun shines longer and the temperatures are on the rise. 

Am I the last one to hear about this ice cream?

Dreaming about these for Sping/Summer.

I've been getting my latest music from NPR's monthly heavy rotation playlist.

Have you ever wanted to make your own screen printing press?

Really excited to watch this show this week.

I'm always so impressed with people who can balance rocks.

 

Instaration: Favorite Instagram Accounts


Instagram is my social media of choice. It's a beautiful magazine of my dear friends and favorite tastemakers. When they changed the algorithm last year and went from a chronological feed to a predictive one, I realized I found myself missing a few of my favorites.

The solution, I discovered, is to like every picture that comes up from your favorite feeds. As a once passive 'liker' this initially seemed weird to me but now it's really solved my champagne problem.

Anywho.. I love learning about new accounts to follow...now that I know how to float them to the top of my feed.

Here are a few accounts I've really been loving lately.

Overheard LA: I've never lived in LA but BOY do I love this feed. It's great for a quick chuckle or validating the stereotype you've built up about people living in LA. 

Anna Rifle Bond: The founder of Rifle Paper Co- Anna posts some fantastic behind the scene shots, painting process videos, and sneak peeks of new products launching ( Keds!, Fabric!). Her design aesthetic is something I aspire to achieve in my own life. 

Notes 2 My Selfie: I think I've thought at least 75% of what Jilly posts. She really nails capturing drifting thoughts in a tongue in cheek manner. Careful with this one- you'll laugh out loud in public. Side note: her battery life gives me some serious anxiety. HOW does she go so low so often?

Target Does it Again: As a gal consistently falling victim to weak knees and willpower walking through Target, this feed points me toward Target's latest score. Realistically, this is a terrible feed I should never follow because it's so on point but....I can't stop. Oops.

Timber + Soul: If you love watching woodworking process, you'll love this feed. I have yet to figure out how to make my own wood projects look as beautiful as his but I feel like if I keep watching i'll eventually learn something.

Paul Nicklen: A photographer for National Geographic, his photos and videos are INCREDIBLE. It's a mini Planet Earth post every time you come across him. He not only posts amazing pictures, he teaches you about the animals or the context of the shot in his caption. It doesn't hurt he posts so often about whales. I love love love whales.

Who am I missing? Give me suggestions!

Partly Sunny vs. Partly Cloudy


Seattle, WA  partly sunny  sky shot.

Seattle, WA partly sunny sky shot.

What's the difference? A question that always popped into my head but never had an answer. To be honest, I thought it was just a matter of the weatherperson's disposition when they built the report that day.

BUT NOW...

Partly sunny is a prediction that happens during the day.

Partly cloudy happens at night.

No sun= no opportunity to be partly sunny.

So obvious!

Tell me I wasn't the only one with her mind blown here.

 

Beauty Buy: Zit Stickers


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I love these zit stickers so much...i'll post a gross selfie for you to show how well these little beauties work.

The concept is simple:

After you wash your face, take a washcloth heated with hot water and hold it to your bumpy friend for about a minute. This helps to open up your pores and make the sticker more effective.

Towel dry your face and then put a sticker on your zit. I usually wear them overnight. The box says that the sticker is finished once it turns white. I'll let you guess what makes it turn white. yick.

ANYWAY- the end result is a flat red spot- speeding you ahead at least 2 days in the zit cycle. They are magic. You need them. Tell me how much you love them once you give them a try.

Let's Make Mondays Interesting: Volume 24


Garden By the Bay in Singapore at night. 

Garden By the Bay in Singapore at night. 

Happy Monday! I have high hopes of posting more than once this week...

What did you think of the series finale of Girls? Honestly, I thought last week would have been a better finish.

Tutorial to MAKE YOUR OWN SOFA! It looks moderately approachable! 

Science says not to walk on escalators. whaaat?

Rethinking airplane runways..could circles be more efficient? 

Just bought this book- loved her Modern Love piece.

A full tour of my favorite blogger's first house.

Save a bag of chips without a clip!