4.29.2011

love is sweet.

today i am linking up with breakfast at toast's wedding blog crawl... and i have my mind on sweet things::


hoosier mama pies, ice cream cookie pops, the cake poppery
biscuit barvoodoo donuts (we had these in portland and LOVED them!), cupcakes
i have a major sweet tooth so i would love to have quite a bit of variety at my wedding for the desserts. what sort of sweets do you dream of on your wedding day? anything different? 

xoxo, 
jillian

ps: we're getting excited about the honeymoon too!
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4.25.2011

wedding venue review.

I have some fantastic news---after seeing almost ten venues in the past month, h and i finally found the perfect place to get married!!! during our visit to the metropolis ballrooms on saturday i was overwhelmed with excitement and relief because i knew this was the one. it had everything we wanted:: 


-a room large enough to hold our large guest list for dinner and dancing with high ceilings, huge windows, wood floors, and a built-in bar
-a large patio right off the dinner/space
-a large separate space to go for cocktails (with exposed brick and another built in bar)
-comfy and large bridal suite
-in-house catering (=fresher food)
-free parking garage next door 
-a park across the street where we could hold the ceremony (weather permitting)
-the owner is a wedding coordinator who really knows his stuff and seems like he'll be fun to work with
-nearby (affordable) hotels for out of town guests 
-lots of bathrooms (who knew that would be so hard to find?!)

here's a venue recap of all of the places we checked out:: 
morton arboretumchicago park district columbus park refectoryprairie production
ravenswood event centerhyatt lodge, metropolis ballroom

every place we visited had it's pros and cons but we loved with metropolis ballroom (the photos don't begin to show the space)! you'll just have to wait and see how we transform the space ;)

Married friends: was it a challenge for you to find your perfect wedding venue? single ladies: do you already have a place in mind? 
xo, 
jillian 
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4.24.2011

happy easter.

anyone else remember wearing those pink curlers?!, cadbury egg brownie recipe, cadbury cupcake recipe 


i hope all of your Cadbury egg dreams come true :) 
h and i are off to my aunts house today for easter dinner. i am making my family favorite's casserole: broccoli, cheese and rice-- and i am going to add in some fresh zucchini. (hopefully they like it!) i am excited to spend time with my family and see all of my little cousins. 


do you celebrate easter? if so, do you have any special traditions? 
xoxo, 
jillian
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4.22.2011

it's easy being green.

happy earth day! in lieu of link love i wanted to share with you a few simple green tips that h and i swear by::

reuse glass jars for storage. we wash out our spaghetti sauce jars and store pasta, oats, and other dry goods. it makes things v accessible in our cabinets and a little prettier than typical packaging.

composting. i know, i was scared at first too... but it's super easy and you won't have to take the garbage out as much! h and i separate all of our vegetable and fruit scraps and he puts in into our compost bin (mixed with leaves and dirt, we don't do worms) and stirs it up. in a few weeks the scraps disappear and you have great dirt for your garden (he is going to donate our dirt to his brother who has a proper back yard).

reusable napkins and tea towels. instead of spending a ton of money on paper towels and napkins buy some pretty napkins and tea towels and reuse/wash as necessary.

reusable bags. take them everywhere you shop, not just the grocery store. plastic shopping bags drive me insane.

turn down the heat/ac when you're not home.. this ones a no-brainer but it really saves on energy consumption and costs. 

go paperless. sign up for electronic bill pay and cancel your catalogue subscriptions (less magazines to recycle and less shopping temptation!)

water collection and reuse. another seemingly drastic step but it's SO easy to put a bucket in the shower to collect all that water before you get in. h uses his shower water to take care of our plants :)

shop local. visit your local farmers market to get fresh and local produce and avoid buying produce at the grocery store from far away countries (it takes a lot of oil to have them shipped to the US).

reduce your online shopping. packaging and shipping eat up a lot of oil too! double that when you return an item.

do you have any more easy green-living tips?
have a fantastic weekend!!
xoxo,
jillian
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4.19.2011

we heart WE.

this weekend h and i visited a few stores to get a feel for what would be the best place to register at next year. we stopped by the apple store (swoon..dreaming of a desktop), the container store, world market, west elm and pottery barn. it was fun to window shop and i am happy to report h and i have v similar tastes :) we fell in love with just about everything at west elm:: 



1. moroccan plates  2. recycled-glass bowls  3. sunshine tea towel 4.enamel metal dipping bowls 5. mediterrian print napkins 6. recycled-glass vase 7. mediterrian trays 8. terracotta cylinder planters 


it's a big bummer that west elm do not offer wedding gift registries! ah well... we'll figure something out. perhaps we'll create a wishlist and send it to tech-savy friend and register at another place for everyone else.


what is your favorite home decor store? 
what's on your house (or apt.) wishlist?


xoxo, 
jillian
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4.14.2011

wardrobe staple.

i recently added the striped cotton-modal boatneck top ($24.50) from land's end canvas to my closet and i am in love. the shirt is crazy versatile and is my new favorite staple in my closet. i have dreamt up a few fun outfits that will be easy to transition from spring into summer.

look 1: boyfit shorts $30, cardigan $54, toms classic shoes $44, watch $60
look 2: black cropped gap jeggings (my faveee) $50 and tan minnetonka moccasins $42, bangle $58, earrings $24, cole haan bag $268

what is your favorite staple this season?
xo, 
jillian
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4.11.2011

decorate my space!

i had a request from a co-worker, ashley from a cat in gloves, to help her dream up some ideas for her new condo! i decided to tackle the guest bedroom. here is the current room (decorated by the previous owner):: 

ashley wanted me to consider these spaces for inspiration. she wants to change the wall color and add some bold pieces of furniture. the only furniture she has for the room is a full bed and white dresser.


i picked out a few affordable pieces of furniture that have classic lines and can be used for years (arm chair, desk). i was tempted to add a bright chair but i went with more affordable throw pillows instead and still got an easy punch of color. i would also suggest that ashley paints one wall (whatever wall she has the bed on) to serve as an anchor and headboard. the stripe duvet cover makes a statement without being overwhelming, and the gender neutral color palate creates an inviting room for any guest.




the chicago prints are my favorite pieces, ashley's favorite building is the wrigley building so the black and white print was an easy (and affordable!) pick. i also love the chicago neighborhood print for an additional punch of color.

xo, 
Jillian
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4.06.2011

bridesmaids.

Choosing bridesmaids was pretty difficult for me. I have quite a few important ladies in my life but i wanted to keep the party small for logistics sake. After much deliberation i decided on two close friends from college, one from middle school and my cousin (who might as well have been my sister growing up). Once i finalized the list i wanted to find a unique and cute way to ask my best friends to be in the wedding. enter once wed and this post: DIY Bridesmaid Cards

I decided to create a similar card set with InDesign. the talented joelle was kind enough to create some pretty calligraphy and i was able to personalize each little lady :) I was pretty excited about the end result and it was a fun project (h even helped cut a few cards!)
i am beyond excited to get married next year with all of my friends and family in attendance.

married ladies: how many bridesmaids did you have and how did you ask them to participate in your wedding? single gals: do you already have yours picked out?!

xo,
Jillian
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4.05.2011

sweet lilacs.

growing up we had a lilac bush in our front yard. i have fond memories of the fresh picked flowers in our kitchen in spring. now every time i smell lilacs i think of home :) 

what smells remind you of home or make you think of spring? 

xoxo,
jillian
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4.04.2011

color crush: bright white.

happy monday! obviously i have the wedding on my mind :) there's also something so fresh and clean (so fresh and so clean clean) about white.. it screams summer and i could use a little more sun after the warm weather tease we had in chicago yesterday. 

do you wear white on a regular basis or do you save it for the summertime? 
xo, 
jillian
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