cornflake dreams.: January 2012


game on!

for me (and i know i'm not alone) super bowl sunday is an excuse to make a rediculious amount of appetizers and dips and watch commercials. this year i convinced h to let me host a little party for the superbowl where i plan on finally making a few of my pinterest recipes that have been hiding out on my 'foodie' and 'sugar sugar' boards.

i am determined NOT to have another bake fail this weekend...and i will be attempting to make my mom's cherry crunch recipie (in all of it's buttery glory).

do you have any special treats planned for the super bowl?!


good things.

happy monday chickadees! how was your weekend?
mine was full of lots of good (and tasty) things.
friday: bowling party downtown...turns out i am a great bowler (when the bumpers are up and i have a few fancy drinks)
saturday: meeting with the florist to talk centerpieces and bouquets (more about that on wednesday!)
lunch with my parents (mmmm chicken pot pies are THE BEST)
seeing dougie (aka the cutest corgie) and izzy (she just loves to nap).
movie date! 50/50. JGL has come a long way since his 3rd rock from the sun days
homemade lemon orza with aspargus, tomatoes and feta (it was the first time i zested a lemon...whoa feeling grown-up!)
sunday skype date with marissa from the boot AND {av} from long distance loving
dinner with the family at pasta d'arte (a place we have wanted to go to since we saw it on the show check, please!) the restaurant was a bit of a drive but the portions were HUGE and it was pretty tasty!



etsy finds - cosmetic bags.

okay, it's true...i have been allll about etsy lately. on my last etsy browsing marathon i stumbled on BabyPenelope a shop that makes the cutest pieces for a momma on the go [diaper & wipe casesbibs and changing blankets]. since i don't have a mini-h (yet!) i gravitated towards the fabric cosmetic bags. they come in fantastic prints and would make a cute present (with the perfect shade of essie nail polish tucked in!) these are my favorites:



wedding wednesday - bridesmaid jewelry!

as you know i have been searching for the perfect bridal jewelry- for myself and my bridesmaids. after scouring etsy i fell in love with a pretty pair of earrings that i just had to have for my girls. the earrings are from le petit ruban, a french bohemian bridal & casual jewelry shop. Le petit ruban is French for 'the little ribbon' and the shop is described as "a romantic and elegant version of a cross between French bohemian and Shabby chic, a Jane Austen meets the Great Gatsby"...swoooon. the jewelry is light and pretty and it will look gorgeous with all the bridesmaid dresses. {and bonus- i have no doubt the girls will be able to wear the earrings after the wedding!} 
here are a few of my favorite pieces:: 
rose opal earrings $38 - crystal clear faceted glass earrings $40 - clear crystal quartz faceted earrings $40 -  faceted black swan glass earrings $34

mont blanc colorblock faceted champange earrings $34 - light green jade faceted glass stone earrings $26 - 
deva sapphire blue faceted glass stone earrings $34


ps the newly engaged, marissa of the boot, was sweet enough to feature me in her great women series today!

AND a very special happy birthday to my maid of honor jen!


inspired design - life magazine covers.

i have a whole pinterest board full of ideas for our future home 
but this photo has me dreaming of long-forgotten photography: 

a blown up vintage life magazine cover = instant art with some history thrown in- what a fun idea! i searched the life magazine archive for a couple of interesting covers and these are my favorites:: 
[i'd love to put either of these covers in our living room]
[art for your dressing room or walk in closet]
[perfect for a nursery or child's bedroom]
want more inspiration? 
check out LIFE's 75 best photos and laugh along at the worst covers ever



craving: mediterranean.

good morning chickadees. my weekend was taken over by kleenex, sneezing and sleep...not fun. i missed out on some fun plans but one bright spot was a super fresh Mediterranean lunch- a pita pocket inspired by this recipe. my version was a pita stuffed full of hummus, cucumbers, tomatoes, parsley and tons of feta. now i am craving everything mediterranean! i bought the ingredients to make lemon orzo with asparagus and tomatoes and i have these on my to-make list: 


friday's fancies #50!

happy 50th friday's fancies!! a huge thanks to miss {AV} for starting friday's fancies! i look forward to creating a new dreamy outfit every friday and seeing other bloggers link up!
this weekend h and i have plans to curl up and stay out of the cold as much as possible. we'll venture out on saturday night for a friends house warming party, {i am so excited to see her new place!} and on sunday for the usual groceries and family dinner. i hope to stay warm and cozy inside the rest of the time - we've got a netflix movie and i think it's about time for me to start up our fireplace.

sweater $54 - shirt $56 - jeans $76 - heels $80

have a great weekend!

pssst: see all my other 49 friday's fancies outfits here



bauble bar is one of my favorite online shops to find gorgeous jewelry at affordable prices. they are celebrating their one year anniversary this month and offering members access to their One Year Shop {open from 1/23 - 1/29} and full of special sales! sooo if you aren't already a member - sign up so you don't miss the big event! {it's free to join and you get $10 off your first order.} i have had these few pretty pieces on my wishlist for a while...

seafoam cable necklace $54 - gold crystal mix necklace $44 - aqua boho drops $28 -crescent pendant $38 - deco noir necklace - chevron necklace $38



wedding wednesday - the rings.

over the weekend i got into a few discussions about engagement rings and wedding bands. initially i wanted a simple solid rose gold band to wear with my engagement ring, but now i am tempted to get something a little more unique. i also would love something engraved inside (h and i already have an idea about that). luckily i have a jeweler in the family who will be helping us pick out or design our bands (she did an amazing job on my engagement ring). 
here are a few of my favorite ideas::


ps wedding update: h and i went suit shopping last sunday at the men's warehouse, it took a little more time than h expected and he didn't find the right suit. i think we're going to check out Jos A Bank or Jcrew next. do you have any other suit shops (with locations in IL, NY and SC?!)


big bake fail + a blogger meet up.

this weekend i hosted a little chicago blogger get together. i was sooo excited to make my mom's cherry crunch dessert for the girls, its a easy recipe and impossible to mess up. (or so i thought). side note: when i called my mom to ask her what i needed for the recipe she started with "a stick of butter.. but make it two sticks if the batter looks dry." ehhhh, yikes. i said okay but knew i would alter the recipe to ease up on the butter content. 

1. melt butter (i only melted one stick...#FAIL no1)
2. drain your cherries pour into non-stick pan
3. pour in a box of yellow cake mix 
4. pour in melted butter 
5. top with chopped walnuts
6. bake at 375 til golden brown.... this is where things went really bad. i baked the dish, took it out and noticed it didn't look like my moms (because i didnt add that pesky second stick of butter). i asked h to try the dish so he took a HUGE piece and said he loved it. (note: i rarely hear him say he doesn't like something i make). SOO i thought eh, why not just STIR everything up again and re-bake. BIG MISTAKE (see photo #6) the dish turned brown because of the cherries and although h swore the dish was delicious, i was not feeling it.

so okay paula deen you win. next time i wont mess with the recipe. bring on the butter. and yes, i will never...ever STIR something after i bake it!

once i abandoned i quickly moved onto plan b: instant french onion dip with lipton mix + yogurt...even i couldn't mess that one up! the dip turned out to be a big hit with the girls- who brought some ammmmazing appetizers: 

i was so excited to host and meet some new chicago bloggers! trust me, you'll want to get to know these ladies too::
inspiration and rough drafts - style foodie - ashley nicole catherine - city girl chicago - the daily dish - simply irresistible - six twelve placefiscally chic - makeunder my life



GG girl crush.

happy monday chickadees! (and HAPPY MLK DAY!) i am thrilled to have the day off and lots of wedding planning on my to-do list...but first can we talk about the golden globes?! last night (after our family dinner) h and i watched the recorded award show (YAH no commercials!) i was looking forward to ricky gervais (i am a huge fan) but i was distracted by all the gorgeous gowns. apparently i was commenting a little too much on all the pretty girls  that h paused the recording and asked me "are we still on for (our wedding in) july?!" i told him to be happy that i wasn't gawking and commenting on all the guys :) 

so i'm curious - who were your favorite ladies last night?!



friday's fancies #49.

happy friday chickadees!! this weekend i am hosting another chicago blogger get-together!! this time we'll be tasting + toasting different appetizers and wine- i can't wait :) i am going to make my mom's famous cherry crunch dish (recipe up next week). on sunday h and i are on a mission to find his tux or suit for the wedding (he thinks the shopping adventure will take 30 minutes- we'll see about that!) while we're out shopping i'll still be searching for the perfect leather jacket and maybe something bright for my closet...lately i am smitten gold + aqua::
what are your plans for the weekend?


the bang game.

oy! my bangs are driving me crazy... i adore them but bangs are a HUGE commitment and i am not a high maintenance-go to the salon every other week sort of girl. i have resorted to trimming them myself *trust me it doesnt always end well. it was such a big deal to finally get bangs in the first place but now i am not sure how much longer i can keep them. if i decide to go with a lower maintenance swoooop bang I'm sure I'll chop them off again later this year for the wedding...

via, via

i have an appointment tonight with my favorite stylist at sine qua non salon in west town... we'll see what  happens! 



wedding wednesday - stationary.

after hours months of searching online for the perfect invitations for our wedding i thought i would never find the right ones. with so many great options out there i know this sounds crazy but (to me) the design of our wedding stationary is just as important as my dress! the invitation is your guest's first look into your wedding... it sets the tone for the whole event. without the right design i was unable to make any other wedding planning decisions. so imagine my relief (and JOY!) when i finally found the perfect suite from MaeMae Paperie. the design i chose is modern with a vintage twist and a gorgeous graphic punch and it will fit perfectly with the rest of my wedding dreams. i am smitten with the whole maemae site - here's a quick introduction to the shop:

WEDDING: maemae has a stunning collection of custom wedding invitation pieces and she is announcing a NEW wedding collection at the end of the month! if you're still in search for your wedding stationary don't miss the 20% off discount this week!

FOR YOUR HOME & OFFICE: maemae also has other fantastic prints and custom stamps::
2012 limited edition 2012 synchronized swimmers calendar $39 - salsa dance card $5.25 - cha cha dance card $5.25- dance coasters (set of 10) $17

initial rubber stamp $38 - ollie address stamp $68 - ozwald address stamp $68 - theo address stamp $68

aren't you in love?! stop by maemae's website - blog - shop to see more!


ps don't miss the maemae sale on joss & main!


time for another adventure.

it seems once we have one trip planned we're onto dreaming about the next one... i can't stop dreaming of italy ! we want to visit rome *my pick and milan *h's he can finally see his soccer team AC Milan play... 

where do you want to get lost?


loving lately.

pops of color. i know this might be the most over-used phrase in blogland but i really do love a little color here and there... 

via, via, via, via

this christmas we got quite a few gift cards to our favorite stores. h and i decided to give our living room a much needed POP of color with two RED west elm slipper chairs $299

viavia, via

i finally broke down and bought a pair of pumas $44 (on sale!) for our next trip

what are you loving lately?

ps stop by learning patience today to see my dream destination for the day!


friday's fancies #48.

last sunday, winter arrived in chicago. the weather was v windy and i finally accepted that it's time to wear the serious coat, boots + sweaters. fast forward a few days later and we're back up to 50! hooray for heat waves - especially when they arrive just in time for the weekend!! to celebrate the warm weather i plan to wear some warm-ish outfits and save the layers for next week. this weekend i have a few plans- saturday i'm going shopping for bridal jewelry and sunday my cousin is visiting!
sweater dress $50, flats $45, jacket $110, necklace $98

what are your plans for the weekend?


ps fashionistas i am on the search for a cute leather bomber jacket -- if you have any suggestions please send them my way!


the modern chalkboard.

I have some exciting condo decorating news! H has finally given me the green light to paint a chalkboard wall in our hall/kitchen! Now I just need to decide what I want to are a few inspiration photos (thank you pinterest!)

We have really high ceilings so I think a floor to ceiling chalkboard might be a bit much. I'm considering buying a frame and just painting the glass but I am not sure how the texture would turn out.

Does anyone have experience with chalkboard paint? Is it easy to use? 
how would you create a modern chalkboard?



wedding wednesday- statement jewelry.

at the start of the holidays i decided to take a little break from wedding planning and now that it's january i am ready to jump back into it! i'll admit i never realllly stopped thinking about the wedding and while i was christmas shopping i always kept an eye out for beautiful jewelry that i could wear at our wedding. here are a few of my favorite looks::

via - via

did you wear jewelry on your wedding? 
what do you think about statement pieces?




hello chickadees! i had a wonderful new years eve celebration on saturday night!! our friend ryan held his annual nye party and (as always) it was a great group of friends + lots of tasty drinks :) i took allll of saturday to recover and snuck in some movie time with h (we finally watched the curious case of benjamin button). i had the day off yesterday and took advantage of the time to think about 2012 and my to-dos... it's going to be a great year!
i'll admit a few of my resolutions are from last year (hello reality shows!) but i love starting off the year with a few new goals (french!) and dreams (travel).
what's on your to-do list for 2012?