8.28.2014

i love peanut butter & co.

Full Disclaimer: I received complimentary items from Peanut Butter & Co. to review. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting brands that support Cornflake Dreams.

Peanut Butter & Co. was sweet enough to send over some product samples last weekend. ahhhmazing. I got to try five different all-natural peanut butters, including: Smooth Operator, Crunch Time, Cinnamon Raisin Swirl, White Chocolate Wonderful, and Dark Chocolate Dreams. I was in peanut butter heaven. They were all delicious but my favorite was the Cinnamon Raisin Swirl. I love that every jar lists unique ways to use the peanut butter. The Cinnamon Raisin Swirl tastes SO good with apple slices or bananas and it instantly turns dry toast into a delicious and easy breakfast. It's also good directly off a spoon (meet joe black style) - I'm adding it to future grocery lists.
After sampling the peanut butter, I decided to get busy in the kitchen on Sunday and bake some peanut butter cookies with chocolate chips (recipe via Deliciously Sprinkled) using Peanut Butter & Co.'s Crunch Time peanut butter. Now it's a few days later and I still can't stop eating them :) I also thought it'd be tasty to add a little Dark Chocolate Dreams to the cookies to make a sandwich. yep. best idea ever ;)

Have you tried Peanut Butter & Co.? 
What is your favorite flavor?
-xo-
Jillian
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8.27.2014

shopping keepers and returns.


Keepers: CB2 knitted gray pouf -- This has been on my wish list for a long time and I even included it in my April Houzz Ideabook. It looks great in our living room and I use it almost much every day.

I took advantage of the Layered and Long Etsy shop discount I posted about the other week and bought a Wishbone necklace. It's even prettier in person and I've already worn it a few times. Use the promo code CORNFLAKE at checkout for 10% off -- I'm tempted to buy this necklace too.

GiGi New York All in One Bag, stone embossed python  - I am a huge fan of GiGi New York and Graphic Image! Their leather wallets, bags, and planners are high quality and made in the USA. The All in One Bag is beautiful in person and it's the perfect size for date nights and brunch dates (it fits my phone, credit cards, sunglasses and lip gloss).

and now for the Returns: I waited until the last day of the Nordstrom anniversary sale and bought a Caslon Drape Neck Zip Tan Cardigan - I had high hopes for this cardigan but it just looked frumpy. I also bought the Spanx 'Ready to Wow' structured leggings -- they are good in theory but eeks no. They were really tight up top (ok that might be the Spanx part), the cut was not flattering and they were very uncomfortable.

The Le Mer Del Mar gold watch I had on my wish list finally went on sale the other week from $88 to $61. Shopbop has fast (and free) shipping and I got the watch within a few days of ordering it. At first I was thrilled, I loved the small size and pretty face with great detail. But when I put it on I realized the watch has an elastic wristband and it hurt my wrist = no bueno. I promptly returned it (thankfully Shopbop offers returns too).
And finally, the Kristen Blake Piped Stretch Cotton Trench Coat (currently on sale 1/2 off) unfortunately did not work out. I liked this trench, it had nice thick water resistant fabric, pretty lining and seemed well-made. But it was too big on me. I normally wear a Small but I think this coat would fit better in a Petite XS -- hopefully Nordstrom restocks soon!

What are your latest shopping keepers?
-xo-
Jillian
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8.26.2014

weekend good things.

Sorry for the delay!! This past weekend was pretty low-key but I managed to try a new restaurant and do some baking! Here are the highlights:

Friday night H and I went to the gym and I did some yoga and some exercises on a foam roller (I love those things!)...and then we hit up a taco bell. #classy! Don't worry we both ordered off the light fresco menu :) We finished the night with a few episodes of Lost (we're starting from season one - I never watched the whole series but it's pretty good so far).

On Saturday H spent most of the day studying and I started The Hundred Foot Journey. I also made my great grandma's date nut bread (again). And later that night we met up with some friends for dessert at Kaminsky's. I ordered the brownie sundae with vanilla bean ice cream, chocolate sauce, caramel, and pecans. so. so. good. Afterwards we walked around the Night Market downtown and managed to snag a swing by Waterfront Park (the breeze by the water was ahmmazing).

I met up with Ally and Caitlyn the next day for brunch at Leaf. The restaurant was beautiful with lots of seating indoors and a pretty patio. I ordered the egg, cheese, apple and bacon croissant sandwich - one of my favorites! It did not disappoint, and the breakfast came with fruit, potatoes AND a mimosa, bloody mary or juice -- you can't beat that! I made peanut butter chocolate chip cookies later that afternoon and finished The Hundred Foot Journey. The book was a quick read compared to Outlander and it was pretty good (although it wasn't the romantic story I was expecting, so that was a little disappointing). I'd love to see the movie and see their interpretation of the story and characters.

-xo-
Jillian

p.s. THANK YOU for your salon suggestions last week. Now I'm in search of a good place for a pedicure downtown... any tips would be greatly appreciated! Also stop by Recent Somethings - I am guest posting today!
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8.19.2014

color crush: sangria.

I've spotted lots of shades of sangria red/purple in stores lately -- which makes me really excited about Fall but there are still cute options to wear now (and purchase for later). Here are my favorites: factory draped sleeveless blouse $50 (wear now and later with a cardigan) - ruched underwire tank swimsuit $63 (there's still time to get to the beach in Charleston) - 3" chino shorts $45 - embroidered pom-pom tank $49 - v-neck tee $15 - factory tissue scarf $35 (light enough for summer) - sophie dress $200 (I wish I had somewhere to wear this dress -- it's gorgeous!) - embroidered navy top $50 (cute color combo) - andie chino $49 (I want these for Fall)- essie limited addiction nail polish $8.50 - contrast stitch sweater $90 - suede ballet flats $80 (adding these to my wish list!)  -- use the code EXTRA25 for 25% off Jcrew Factory purchases

Would you wear the color sangria for Summer and Fall?
xo, 
Jillian
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8.18.2014

weekend good things.

Happy Monday! I had a pretty low-key weekend since H is in the middle of studying for his boards exam (it's in 4-weeks - let the countdown begin!) 
Friday night we went to the gym and I picked up some free weights, it felt good to use my muscles again :) Later that night we (finally) finished season two of OITNB and I was pretty happy with the way things ended -- when does season three premiere?!

On Saturday H spent the day studying, while I kept busy around the house. I dragged him outside for a bike ride around our neighborhood and then I made my great-grandma's date nut bread. Later that night, I watched part of Aladdin and Mrs. Doubtfire (ahh, so many good childhood memories.) And followed that up with the not-so-family-friendly movie, The Heat, it kinda dragged on but Melissa McCarthy made me laugh a few times.

 I made brunch on Sunday -- we indulged in french toast sticks, turkey sausage, and scrambled eggs (it was soooo good, I need to make brunch more often). H spent the rest of the day studying again (I don't know how he does it) and I finished OutlanderNow I'm debating on starting the next book in the series (has anyone else read it yet?) or starting something new on my summer reading list

How was your weekend? 
xo, 
jillian 
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8.15.2014

friday five.

Happy Friday friends! I'm ready for the weekend :)
ONE: I met up with Shelby and Ally last night at O'Hara & Flynn Wine Bar last night and we shared some delicious appetizers. Bruschetta with mozzarella and avocado is my new favorite...it was sooo good.

TWO: Our carriage house got a little cozier this week with the delivery of our upholstered bed and a knitted pouf for the living room. Our kitchen is another story... last week our lower cabinets were removed to remediate mold. So now we have a temporary sink and counter with no lower cabinets. The new cabinets will be installed in a few weeks, until then we are being creative with "storage" (our pots and pans are currently in the oven). ah well - it'll be worth it to have a mold-free space!


yogi fruit
THREE: I practiced yoga three times this week, and I am going to a class tomorrow morning. hooooray I think I have found my new workout routine. AND I held crow pose for 12-seconds yesterday (that's a major personal victory). 
FOUR: I am still in search of the perfect trench... I found this one on major sale (1/2 off) at Nordstrom, it should be delivered any day now. I'll let ya know how it works out. 

images via
FIVE: Thank you for all of your Charleston restaurant suggestions, I updated my list...and now I'm hungry.

have a great weekend! 
xo, 
jillian  
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8.14.2014

charleston, sc (restaurant) wish list.

I have quickly discovered that Charleston is a foodie city with lots of great restaurants. So to make the most out of our time here, I made a wish list of all of the places I'd like to visit within the next year. There's a few restaurants that appear on food critics "best of Charleston" lists, and other not-so-smancy places that were recommended by bloggers. I have already visited the restaurants crossed out below and I'll do my best to do post recaps for the remaining places :)
images via - update: I've included a * next to my favorite spots.

downtown: 
39 Rue De Jean
Basil
Bin 152
Brown Dog Deli
Butcher & Bee*
Callie's Hot Little Biscuit*
Dellz Uptown
FIG
Five Loaves
Fuel
Goat Sheep Cow
The Grocery
Hominy Grill
HoM
Husk
Indaco
Leaf
Lee Lee's Hot Kitchen
Macintosh
Mellow Mushroom
Minero
Monza
O'Hara & Flynn Wine Bar
Park Cafe*
Persimmon Cafe
Poogan's Porch*
Queen Street Grocery*
Taco Boy
Two Boroughs Larder
Virginia's On King
Xiao Bao Biscuit

desserts:

Charleston Donuts*
Cupcake Down South
Jeni's
Kaminsky's
Sugar Bake Shop
coconut cake at the Peninsula Grill*

surrounding burbs:

Americano*
Basico
Boxcar Betty's
EVO Extra Virgin Oil
The Glass Onion
Mazzo Deli
Mex 1
Jack's Cosmic Dogs
The Obstinate Daughter
Olympik Deli*
Poe's Tavern*
Sesame*
Swine and Swig
Tattooed Moose
White Duck Taco Shop*
Zia Taqueria

I am not a seafood fan, so I am going to skip the shrimp -- but I'd love your suggestions on other restaurants to add to the list!! 
xo, 
Jillian 
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8.13.2014

craving: homemade banana bread.

At my first "real" job in Chicago I had a sweet co-worker who used to bring in a loaf of homemade chocolate chip banana bread every week. I ate my weight in banana bread and I haven't really craved it for a few years - until now. Sooo I took the lazy girl route and bought some mix and made muffins. They were decent, but now I'm determined to bake up something less processed and homemade. Here are a few from-scratch recipes I would love to try: 
What is your favorite thing to mix in with banana bread? 
xo, 
jillian
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8.12.2014

good things.

I'm back! I returned to Charleston Sunday night and I took most of yesterday to recoup from my busy weekend... here are some highlights: 
On Thursday I convinced H to take me to Boxcar Betty's for some Southern fried chicken. We indulged in fried chicken sandwiches with pimento cheese + sweet potato and regular french fries + fried green tomatoes (my favorite!) It was all soooo delicious. The portions were huge and we couldn't finish everything. And obviously everything was super fried. In retrospect it wasn't the smartest dinner option for someone who suffers with Crohn's. However if you can handle fried food -- visit Boxcar Betty's and eat some chicken + fried green tomatoes for me ;)
The next afternoon I flew to Chicago to meet my family for my brother's wedding reception. We got together that night for the wedding rehearsal out on the farm. 
On Saturday afternoon my older brother Andy and his wife Amy renewed their vows in front of 300+ friends and family and we celebrated in a huge barn. They had tasty barbecue, adorable honey favors, mason jar lemon cookies and cupcakes. Guests were treated to live music from a Nashville country band, and everything was just perfect. And yes, I even wore cowboy boots ;) 

The family got together the next morning for my grandpa's biscuits and gravy (my childhood favorite), and I traveled back to Charleston later that afternoon. It was so wonderful to see family and friends and indulge in some delicious food... now it's time to detox! 

How was your weekend?
xo, 
jillian

p.s. not to end on a downer but I was so shocked and sad to hear the tragic news of Robin Williams' death. I remember watching Mrs. Doubtfire, Jack, Hook, Jumanji, and Aladdin over and over with my brothers and he never failed to put a smile on our faces. As the wife of a psychiatrist, mental illness is often a topic of discussion in our home, and depression is no joke. If you are dealing with mental illness please seek help, you should not have to battle it alone. 
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8.08.2014

wedding weekend.

Happy Friday! I'm heading back to Chicago for my older brother Andy's wedding reception (he got married last month in the Bahamas). I'm so excited to see my family and celebrate one of my favorite couples. Here are a few photos from their beach wedding: 
This weekend they are having a rustic-themed reception, complete with BBQ and a Nashville band, for their friends and family in Illinois. Follow along on instagram for wedding pics :)

Have a great weekend!
xo, 
jillian 
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8.07.2014

shop crush: layered + long.

I love a great statement necklace as much as the next girl, but lately I have been drawn to lighter, delicate necklaces. I have a shop crush on just about everything from Layered + Long on Etsy. They were sweet enough to send me their hammered gold disk necklace and dewdrop necklace after featuring it in my summer picks post, and it's even prettier in person. Now I have my eye on a few other pieces -- all under $35! Bonus: they offer personalization and you can choose the necklace length and color (gold, rose gold or silver) on most items.
personalized skinny bar necklace $34 - personalized gold bar bracelet $37 - simple bar drop necklace $33 - large moon pendant necklace $28 - hammered gold disk necklace $29 - tiny gold triangle necklace $27 

What is your favorite piece?
xo,
jillian
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8.05.2014

weekend good things.

This weekend I explored the food scene in Charleston and went to three new-to-me restaurants.
Friday night H and I met friends at Virginia's on King. We ordered the tomato pie (best dish of the night), I had the bbq biscuit sliders (they were covered with mustard?!  This was a totally new "bbq" concept for me, I wasn't a fan.) H had the fried chicken and he did the happy food dance throughout his meal :) I'd like to return sometime for lunch to try their po'boys.
After dinner we went to Kaminsky's for dessert (why haven't I been here before!?) The cafe has a large dessert case up front full of cakes, pies, and desserts, you make your selection and then sit down and get your sugar on. Our table got the Tollhouse Pie (a huge warm cookie pie with pecans -- SO good), a piece Key Lime Pie (tangy and sweet), and a piece of Chocolate Marshmallow Cake (totally disappointing, there was hardly any marshmallows and the cake was dry). Despite that one miss, we'll be back. Did I mention they also serve boozy milkshakes?! #fattys.
On Saturday we went to the gym and I took a yoga class. While we were inside it rained so much the streets flooded (apparently that happens quite often in the lowcountry). We decided to stay home the rest of the day and watch a few episodes of OITNB (we're finally almost done with season two). I made Korean Beef for dinner and it was delicious. I used a recipe from Lizzy Writes and added chopped onions, and broccoli and cabbage slaw for some additional veggies. I typically don't love Asian food, but this dish is going to make it into our monthly meal rotation. 
Sunday was a lazy day, I met up with Ally and Caitlyn for brunch at Husk and did a little shopping on Kings street afterwards. The restaurant is in a charming Southern-style home, complete with a double-decker front porch. I ordered the cheeseburger with two bacon-infused patties, american cheese, onions, pickles and special sauce. It was exactly what I was craving :)

How was your weekend? 
Locals -- have any other Charleston restaurant recommendations?
xo, 
jillian 
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8.04.2014

skillshare one-year membership giveaway!

Last week I shared my 11 in 11 to-do list. That list included taking more classes via Skillshare, a global learning community. The site offers online classes in a variety of fields, including: business, culinary, design, fashion, photography, technology, and writing. The classes feature unique instructors who are experts in their fields and they teach project-based classes, so you learn by doing

Here are a few examples of classes you can take: Logo Design Fundamentals; Introduction to the Art of Modern Calligraphy; Learn the Ins and Outs of Illustrator; Fundamentals of Entrepreneurship: Pitching Your Business and Yourself; Context is Key: Social Media Strategy in a Noisy Online World; Perfect Southern Fried Chicken and Biscuits; Digital Photography: Become a Better Photographer - Tips & tricks plus camera features and settings; and Introduction to HTML: Building a Portfolio Website. Sounds fun right?

Skillshare offers unlimited classes for $10/month or you can pay $20/class. Lucky for you, Skillshare is offering up a free one-year membership for one reader.


Open to domestic and international readers, one winner will be announced on Monday, August 5. 
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Good Luck! 
xo, 
Jillian
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8.01.2014

five things.

It's August! How did that happen so fast?! I'm excited for a low-key weekend with lots of tasty food. Here are a few things on my mind today... 
Cambron, Amy, Shelby, and Ally - I wore my new favorite cut-out black dress (a $25 steal!)

ONE: I met up with some more Charleston bloggers last night at Bin 152 and indulged in a realllly tasty charcuterie and cheese board. 
TWO: Now that I am in charge of cooking dinners in our house, I have been relying on Pinterest for dinner inspiration. Cheddar baked chicken fingers, turkey bacon avocado summer pasta, and ratatouille for two with goat cheese, tomato sauce and veggies over couscous were all winners in our house. I am excited to try to make korean beef and one pot chicken risotto next! 
draped henley tunic / varsity-stripe tee / black herringbone vest / classic plaid button-up

THREE: I am loving Jcrew Factory's new arrivals -- the navy and burgundy tops are making me excited about FALL.

FOUR: My July Houzz ideabook is all about decorating your office space on a budget! I miss having an office -- so that'll be a priority in our next apartment rental or house.


FIVE: H's friend is visiting this weekend with his girlfriend. We're meeting up with him on tonight and I can't wait to try a new-to-me Charleston restaurant.

Have a great weekend!
xo,
Jillian
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