Friday, July 30, 2010

Shrimp and White Cheddar Stuffed Jalapeños

Happy daze are here again people!  The Chef's mom got out of jail the hospital (for some reason I typed jail and it made me laugh so hard I just kept it and crossed it out.  To be clear that woman hasn't even driven by a jail never mind been in one), today's mail contained an amazing pair of earrings I won in Daschies & Design's Eileen O'Neill giveaway, and Friday is upon us.  Yeeeeehoooooooo!!

What are your plans for the weekend?  I fully intend to take approximately 7000 naps, fold the laundry (yaaaaawwwwwwning already), get maximum outsideness when not napping or folding, OD on Dateline, Primetime, 20/20, and 48 hours tomorrow night, maybe see a movie and, of course, eat as many Stuffed Jalapeños as the Chef grills up.  He made them last weekend as an appetizer (along with those Bacon Wrapped Dates mmmmore please) and they were just incredible.  If you don't like spicy peppers you can either grill them a little longer to reduce the spice or purchase alternate peppers.  All the information will be contained within this post.  I have to say they are the perfect compliment to any barbecue plans you may have.  They're not overly filling and are a pleasant addition to any plate.

Here is the recipe and how-to...please enjoy!

Shrimp and White Cheddar Stuffed Jalapeños
6          jalapeños halved and scooped
4T       cream cheese softened
6T       white cheddar grated
1/2C   shrimp cooked and cut 1/4 inch dice
2ea     scallion sliced
salt & pepper to taste
paprika sprinkle for garnish

First gather your jalapeños, lightly rinse them, halve and scoop out their seeds.  The idea is you want to have nice clean little empty canoes that will be filled with the shrimp mixture.

 *note the less than clean edge of my counter containing raspberry stain.  mortified.

Once halved and cleaned, set the peppers aside and gather the ingredients to make the filling.  Chop, dice, slice, and grate accordingly until you have this:

sans the shells that snuck into this picture

Transfer your chopped ingredients to a bowl and mix with the cream cheese and  half of the white cheddar until you have a mixture with approximately this consistency.  Be sure to reserve half of the white cheddar (3T) to top the stuffed jalapeños.

Next gather your jalapeños, lay them out and begin filling with the mixture.

 Take the reserved white cheddar and gently pack it on top of 
each pepper in order to hold the mixture in during grilling.
This process is called "crusting".  Thanks Chef!
Repeat the fill and crust process for each pepper until complete.

Place on a medium heat grill and cook until cheese is melted (7-10 min). The longer the pepper is cooked the more its natural spice will decrease.

 To finish sprinkle with paprika. 
The sun went down and we were eating by candlelight!   

*Note:  When picking out the peppers select the straightest ones; they are easier to fill and will hold the mixture best. You can also use banana peppers or red jalapenos for less scoville units(That's Chef talk for less spicy peppers - he's so technical sometimes.  Love it!)

Enjoy your weekend everyone!!  Let us know if you try the peppers and how they turn out.  We love getting your feedback.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Cat Whispering In Almost Italy

Today I spent most of the day in LA during which time I ran some errands, did some shopping and basically goofed off.  Otherwise known as screwing around.  I love that part of any day best.  Tomorrow I will catch up on all of your lovely blogs!    I wish I had some crazy funny stories to tell you, but so far this week has been pretty low-key except for the fool at Blockbuster who felt the need to practically holler out so everyone could hear, "Oh isn't this the movie Sa-aarah had that role in?  I'm so into FILMS lately."  Other fool responds, "Oh I KNOW just how you feeeeeel" - while attempting to look around inconspicuously to see if anyone within a 5 mile radius is listening - "One of my friends called me the other day to let me know they saw my movie at the bottom of the bin when they were shopping!!"  Okay.  I get that you're trying to get your acting on and I can respect that, but really I don't care to hear all about it.  Whilst screaming amongst yourselves please try to ensure your dialogue makes sense.  The statements were entirely unrelated and only made so everyone would hear and think they were "connected in the biz".  I love this city!! Where else could you witness this mayhem?? I'm not giving up Allstate :)

So one of my errands today led me to Anthropologie to return what was supposed to be the gold clasp version of the fabulous silver clasp belt I wore last week with the bubble.  Boy was I bummed out when I opened the little box and saw the exact same silver version I had already purchased lying in there.  Oh well.  You win some, you lose some and I still consider it a win when some money goes back into the account for once.  On my previous visit to Anthropologie I stumbled upon (sure sure) the nicest grey poncho that somehow found its way to the counter when it was purchase time.  Earlier this week we stopped to check out the canals in a distant part of my neighborhood and I threw it on as the sun went down.  If you're looking for a light cover-up that can morph into something a little dressy I would highly recommend the Cloudcover Poncho - as well as every single shred of this outfit.  It is one of my faves. 

    There I am heading off into the Shekinah Glory in my shredded Siwy's
(aka best denim shorts in all the land) and the poncho.
This neighborhood is so very quiet.  It's a hidden treasure.  
"Carrie, reach for the liiight," said in the voice of the crazy lady from Poltergeist.  I still get nightmares!!
Back to the poncho:  it's sleeveless and a wider knit with a perfect drape. 
I love it with these shorts.
Here's a closeup from the back so you can get a better sense of the fabric and the drape.
While we were up there a gondola ride went by - complete with serenade!
And these high school kids were just paddling around out in their front yards. Lucky!
While the Chef was taking this picture look who came walking up...
He was such a sweet, timid guy!  Out came the Cat Whisperer - 
which is only kind of self-proclaimed.  I kid you not, if there is a stray cat 
within a one mile radius, they are on me.  I'm like a cat seeking device.
Success!! Not to worry - he is being fed. 
You remember the No Child Left Behind Act?
Well I'm the No Cat Left Behind person.

It was right around this time some guy came walking up with his new little puppy and cat friend gave a hiss and jumped off into the bushes.  And here's where it got a lit-tle kooky.  The guy proceeds to stop and talk telling us how he and his girlfriend are using Cesar Chavez's dog whispering techniques on the puppy.  Then out of the blue he goes, "Yeah like I do singing telegrams and had to deliver one to him." I'm thinking, who the dog?  So I ask something else and he says again, "Yeah, like it was live shoot and I had to walk up in a dalmatian suit and sing (and he bursts out singing some song) out of the dog snout.  He was a little freaked out."  And like a smart aleck I go, "did you get any tips while you were there?"  To which the Chef shoots me a look.  Oops!  But, uh, random much? He was certainly nice enough though. 

Anyway, shortly thereafter we peaced out and went our separate ways.  That was a great evening - it wasn't cold and overcast which is a rarity these days for some reason.  I feel like summer is passing us by and it makes me sad because we haven't had more than a handful of truly nice days.  August?  Are you out there?  

Let me know what you think of the poncho.  Do you wear them?  I hadn't donned one in years and it reminded me how comfy they are.  When it cools off in the evening what is your go-to item?

Outfit details:  Tom Ford Sunnies, Anthropologie:  Poncho, Gap Cami, Siwy Denim Shorts, Old Stud Handmade Belt, Foley & Corinna Handbag, Christian Louboutin Espadrille Wedge Bootie, Melinda Maria Rings, Free People and Motif 56 Bracelets

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Black and White and Red All Over

Okay so here's the deal with Nail Madness 2010:  I had to get that mess off my fingers.  I'm sure you're shocked.  Saturday is the usual day I treat myself to a mani/pedi (budget willing) and even though I really felt like sticking to the routine, all the events of last week prohibited me from being able to emotionally withstand another potentially angry exchange between the nail ladies.  Not to mention I'm to the brim with unwanted bad nail color and aggravated mayhem.

On a side note have any of you seen Allstate's new ad campaign?  I think they've been lurking on my blog because I have clearly sparked a trend with my new catch phrase.

I rest my case.  You're welcome Allstate.  Please have your people get in touch with my people (aka me) so we can arrange for an exchange of the moolah.  Mother Mayhem needs shoes. 

Meanwhile back in nailville the chipping, whacked out color and screaming match boiled down to me waking up on Saturday, whipping out the polish remover and cleaning up the fingertips mah-self.  It was amazing how I suddenly felt like a whole new girl!  Invigorated!  So after the post-beach sandstorm we got fancied up and decided to grab a bite. A couple of weeks ago I ordered the most cool knit Trovata shorts on Gilt...examine the evidence.

 Something about them is very 60's to me.  They sit just a little higher than on the waist.  Hel-loo fall transition.
And with the tucked in tank almost create the illusion of a romper. 
The wooden buttons and the belt make my heart so happy!  Little details change the entire feel of an outfit.
The Chef even commented that it was so "Jackie O" (one of my style icons).  
I think it's the ruffled jacket.  It makes the outfit very "East coast way back when we were at that party on the boat in summer".
Note that they were easy to sit in without fear of riding up...doing an odd maneuver? - maybe another story.
I wore them with my most favorite Manolo's.  Thanks Chef :)
And a Kate Spade I got several years ago.  It was my first "fancy" bag.
I don't know.  I just really like this outfit.  Wearing it makes me very feel grown-up and feminine.
p.s. these pictures were taken right by the nail place!!...what's up with the knot in my stomach?

Did any of you manage to grab a Trovata treasure or two?  They have an appointment only location in Newport by the Chef's parents.  I always peer into the window longingly at their great stuff, and totally regret not buying a long navy and white floral shirt dress that was on serious sale.  Sigh - you can't have everything Carrie.

Outfit details:  Tom Ford Bianca Sunnies, J.Crew Ruffled Jacket (last summer), Gap Favorite Cami, Trovata Knit Short, Manolo Blahnik Shoes, Kate Spade Handbag, Seventh Door Bracelet, Dyrberg/Kern Rings

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Cleaning In Style: Alice Supply Co.

While we're on the topic of Ebelskivers and making food interesting and fun, why not just stay on a slightly altered domestic track and talk about cleaning.

Anyone still with me?  HEL-LOOOO!!! Anybody out there?!?

I kid, I kid.  But on a serious note, if you're not in the mood for it, cleaning can be a real drag.  I remember Saturdays a couple years ago when I would just jump out of bed ready to clean. True Story.  My schedule used to be jam packed and, for some reason I could fit so much more in.  Now?  Not as much - on either account.  Sometimes I even have to set small goals for myself in order to stay motivated to keep it tidy.  Consider this my cleaning confessional.  One day I was talking to a former Roxy executive who mentioned that a former colleague of hers had started this company that created fun cleaning tools.  I was like, "Oh yeah they do...what are they?  A maid service?"  A little sarcasm never hurt anyone.

Enter Alice Supply Co.  They had me at striped broom.

Can you imagine??  Fabulous!!  Now if I could only fly away on it. (hehe)  But it gets better.....

Now you can coordinate!! 

Alice Supply Co. was founded by former Fashion executives Maria Barnes and Raili Clasen who took a trip south of the border last year and found themselves swept away - no pun intended - by brightly colored hardware items and cleaning accessories.  Later, over margaritas (don't you just love them already?), Alice Supply Co. was born.  The company is based out of Chino, California and offers the best and brightest of every humdrum household and gardening item you can imagine.

I first fell in love when I spotted this floor mat:

It was as if the mat called out to me saying, "Carrie your backdoor landing is boring as hell.  Will you do something about that already?"  Next thing you knew my wallet was out and the mat was sitting next to me in the car en route to its new home.

I am currently awaiting the bucket and garden hose, but they have so many other fun things like toolboxes, gardening tools, and plungers (oh yeah I got one of those too because dealing with the inevitable just ain't right.  If you have a significant other you know what this means).  It's a big girl world out there ladies.  That dust, dirt and other nonsense isn't going anywhere, so we might as well go big and clean in style!!

Let me know what you think.  Would you spend a few extra bucks to have some home and garden "accessories" that brought an element of cheer to the tasks?  Personally, I'm all for it!

Ebelskiver Winners!

Two winners were selected by random number generator:

#113 - Style Attic @ Life at Five Feet


#137 - Lori @ Wildflowers

Congrats Ladies!! Style Attic and Lori - I have sent an email to each of you.  Please respond at your earliest convenience including your mailing address in your email so that I can get these Ebelskiver Pan packages out to you ASAP.

Thanks so much to everyone for entering this giveaway!! It was so much fun and I wish I could send one of these sets to each of you.  There was so much buzz over the Ebelskiver Pans that I might have to do another of these in the future.

A special thank you to CSN for providing the actual pans themselves.  I can't wait to hear how the winners use them.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Monday Already? Pass it over here - Sangria Recipe

I don't know how yours was, but my weekend can best be summed up in two words:  too short.

I'm sure we all feel a dab of this every Sunday evening/Monday morning, but I can usually haul myself out of it.  This time, not so much.  After all the goings on last week I could really use an extra day off.  How about you?

Friday night I got take out and vegged on the couch with my favorite Primetime, 20/20 and Dateline episodes.  If there's a suspicious character within a 20 mile radius I think I could pick him out.  The I.D. Channel is my fave!  On Saturday I slept late while the Chef visited his mom in the ICU.  She was still a little groggy, but did sit up for a bit which is great news.  Later in the day while she was resting we hit the beach for a couple hours and relaxed in the wind and the sun.  It got a little crazy at times, but was a heyday for kite fliers and surfers alike.

 There's the Chef trying to keep sand from blowing up his nose while kites flew in the distance.

Sunday was a flood of relaxation and barbecuing.  The Chef hooked it up big time with some yummy appetizers (recipe later this week) and we finally dipped into the fabulous Sangria he made last's been resting for more than a few days with everything that happened, so was even more perfect.

Let's pour one out ladies and gents.  Here's to Monday - and this week going by quickly!

2 ea plumb, peach, nectarine cut in 1/8
1 ea apple and lemon cut in 1/8
1/2pt strawberry cut halved
1/4pt cherries halved and
3C red wine
6oz peach schnapps
6oz coconut rum
12oz pomegranate juice
Club soda

To begin with, this recipe is easy.  The Chef has made several versions and I think this is our favorite to date because of the Pom Juice, Peach Schnapps and Coconut Rum.  So without further delay, let's get to it.

What you need to do first is cut your fruit.  To cut fruit with stones - first cut the fruit in half and then remove the pit.  From there cut each half into 4.  For the apple - first cut it in quarters and then cut out the core.  From there cut each piece in half.  Strawberries are self-explanatory.

As the fruit is being cut up, add it to your Sangria pitcher.  I use a martini pitcher because I'm secretly enamored with the glass stir stick.

Seems like a lot of fruit, but is the perfect amount.

Next simply combine the remaining ingredients and gently stir.  Have you ever used Pom Juice in your Sangria?  The Chef swears by it and I would have to agree that it adds a certain something to the taste.

Once all ingredients are combined let the Sangria marinate overnight in your refrigerator.

 Of course this is not the refrigerator.  Wanted you to see it with all the liquid added.

To serve: fill glass 3/4 with ice, pour Sangria over top and add some fruit. Finish with 1/2oz club soda.

Fruit on ice.
Pouring it out - is it Friday yet?

Ready for the Club Soda.
Mmmmmbubbles.  This was mine.
But this was the Chef's.  Cool bubble action!!

If you have an ingredient that sends your Sangria to the next level, we would love to hear about it.  In the meantime, bottoms up!  What did you do this weekend?

And thank you again to everyone for the kindest, most heartfelt comments and emails regarding the Chef's mom.  Your thoughts and prayers are so much appreciated and dear to our hearts. 

Here's a parting shot of Saturday's kites and kite surfers taken with the Hipstamatic.

p.s.  Today is the last day to enter for the Ebelskiver giveaway!!  Comments accepted at the giveaway post until 11:59 PST tonight.  Good luck everyone!!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Sunday Afternoon Sh*tstorm: Forever21's new Love21 Maternity Line

Quick post here this afternoon ladies.  It's balmy in SoCal and I'm taking a little break from Chef's latest cooking adventures - where I've aptly and proudly been named Sous Chef (she says as she brims with pride) - to bring you a breaking news update.

Looks like Forever21 has a bit of its own aggravated mayhem to deal with.  I was watching HLN Prime News with Mike Galanos who just did a piece on Forever21's new Love21 Maternity Line.  Apparently the line has caused some waves out there beyond the internets because of what some are claiming is an irresponsible message being sent to the brand's teen customers.  Love21 Maternity has launched in Arizona, Alaska, California, Texas and Utah, with Arizona, California and Texas being ranked amongst the states with the highest teen pregnancy rates.  Market research or coincidence?

Silk-Chiffon Foliage Maternity Top

Now I don't know about you, but Teen Mom is one of my absolute favorite shows (guilty admission).  I'm so caught up in Macie, Amber and Catelynn/Tyler's stories (forget Farrah who should be standing in the corner for eternity - sorry haters you know I'm right - so over her. yawwwn.  but i just neeeed to know - is her mother in the clanker?!?) that I beamed with delight when the new season started last week.  When I first started watching last season I was just sick over the whole thing.  It's heartbreaking!  I got so caught up I actually considered contacting Catelynn and Tyler and asking them if they wanted to live with me and go to college out here.  No jokes.  Then the Chef told me to snap out of it and the season ended so I did. wah.  Now, Of course I am certainly not condoning teen pregnancy and I don't like that MTV and that sicko Dr. Drew are capitalizing on their circumstances, however I do like that there is a very accurate portrayal of how excruciatingly difficult it is to deal with teen pregnancy and its aftermath.

Longline Sslv Maternity Cardigan

And back to Love21 Maternity - the first top pictured above is something I would wear for summer currently - and I am nowhere NEAR pregnant.  In fact, it looks like it could rival one of Nicole Richie's pieces from her Winter Kate line, which I love and adore, seen here, here and here(Maybe I should be doing a this or that post!  Guess I kinda just did.)  I actually do own a version of the second top and love it.  So all in all - can we blame a corporation for doing its research and meeting the needs of its customer base?  Further, isn't it a bit juvenile (no pun intended) to claim that Forever21 is encouraging or glamorizing teen pregnancy when teen pregnancy has been here long before Love21's maternity line?  I mean this is not a chicken or the egg type situation, after all.  And beyond all that is the sheer fact that Forever21 is not just for teens now, is it?  I mean I am 22 or something and I still stroll through there now and then for a find...

What are your thoughts surrounding the Love21 debate?  I know a lot of you find incredible deals there and immediately thought of you when I heard this (while taking my ten minute California state mandated break from assisting the Chef - slavedriver).  Would you consider a piece or two of this line even in your pre-pregnancy form if the designs were cute and, of course, form flattering?  And, more importantly, what do you think about the cluster and fluster this seems to have stirred up?

I'm thinking it's going to result in another win for the brand!  And for all the cute pregnant ladies who have limited places to find affordable and fun fashions...whether they are pre or post age 21.


Friday, July 23, 2010

Aggravated Mayhem

Did you know there is a section in the California Penal Code for Mayhem?  I had never heard of such a thing until a couple weeks ago at the couples shower when one of our other friends mentioned that he worked with a woman who had been convicted of aggravated mayhem.  I asked what it was, but can only recall something about one woman biting another woman's ear off or something.  I swear I am not making this up.  Anyway.  The reason I can't really remember is because I was secretly captivated by the expression "aggravated mayhem" and only half heard the rest.  In fact I turned to the Chef and whispered "I'm secretly in love with this aggravated mayhem."  He shook his head and was like "I know you are.  I saw your eyes light up as soon as he said it."  Woops!

Basically it's been living in my mind.  Sometimes I just blurt it out for fun.  "Now there's some aggravated mayhem." Catchy, isn't it?

This week can be best summarized, ironically, as aggravated mayhem.  Maybe I should have seen it coming.  First my friend's mom, then the whacked out sun burn after being doused in SPF 85, and now the Chef's mom.  In the middle of all this I literally witnessed and got caught in the crossfire of some aggravated mayhem of my own that resulted in this nonsense:

I mean can you even tell what color that is?  That would be a no.  I got these things repainted a day and a half ago (not that you could tell with the nice chip job that's already occurring) amidst the biggest nail battle royale of all time.

There I was on Tuesday evening with my nails all chipped up after just having had them done on Saturday afternoon.  Unacceptable.  So I roll back into the salon to get them repainted.  Can you say deep freeze?  Now I may not understand Korean, but I do understand body language and non-verbal cues.  Picture it:  in I stroll to my usual place.  I sit down because there are 2 customers and 3 nail ladies working on them so I have to wait.  I pick up a trash magazine and begin reading.  One customer leaves.  The free nail lady says come over.  I get up to walk over.  Mid-stride one of the others YELLS at her in Korean.  And I mean yells.

Now I'm head down trying to act like everything is normal.  I sit down.  The one who got yelled at raises her voice a little back to the yeller.  As I'm sitting there all hell, I mean aggravated mayhem, breaks loose....They all start full-on screaming at each other in Korean.  The other customer is done.  She scurries out.  I'm caught in the crossfire.  Is this a Seinfeld skit?  One hand's polish is removed and the other hand still tore up.  They're all yelling at each other.  It's like cats in a bag.  They run the other lady off!!  The remaining two start clearly talking about her right in front of me - you could just TELL - even though this all went down in Korean.

So there I am both hands polish off, one foot off one still on and they pick up the phone and start calling and tattling to the owner while still trying to do my nails.  Ever tried to paint a nail with a phone connected to your ear?  Not so much.  They would call, scream, get screamed at, hang up and then the entire process would begin again.  Rinse and repeat for at least 15 minutes.  Can you say tension?  As a result I've got whacked out, unidentifiable color that's already chipping off - 2 coats on some nails, 3 coats on others and no top coat - never mind that I don't even know what the hell the color actually is. See what I mean? Aggravated mayhem is on the loose this week!! 

To top it all off tonight when I stopped at the bank to do a deposit the neighborhood crazy homeless guy who has been roaming the streets for a couple months now flailing his dirty arm cast that's sometimes on his leg (?) simultaneously twitching and hollering at the top of his lungs while downing a 40 of beer with his free hand was beating up on the very ATM I needed to use.  Hitting it full force. When I looked up from my deposit slip and saw him approaching my car at a rapid pace suffice it to say I fired it up, hit reverse and sped off faster than you could say, "pass that 40".  Life's too short.  Bills can wait.

Speaking of aggravated mayhem...

Amsterdam Clog - by Dulce Shoes

I might be committing some of my own when these babies show up next week.  Hope the UPS guy doesn't accidentally hit me in the head with them when he throws them on the stoop. You know, aggravated mayhem style...(sorry I couldn't resist).

Have a great weekend everyone!  Posts will go back to "normal" next week.  Hopefully with a recipe and a few fashion finds.

p.s. - Don't forget to enter for the Ebelskiver Pan and Turning Tools...we could all use a few chocolate filled pancakes in our lives.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Update on Chef's Mom

I wanted to check in and first give a blanket Thank You to each and every one of you who left a kind note and/or said a prayer or sent a healing thought in the Chef's Mom's direction.  We appreciate your well wishes so very, very much.  It's been a crazy couple of days here.

As of now his mom is in the ICU and still sleeping.  Her surgery appears to have gone smoothly and she has woken up only briefly.  They reinserted her breathing tube because she is sleeping so soundly - which I'm sure I would be too after having 8 or 9 hours of surgery during which some people cracked open my chest, rebuilt the arteries around my heart, physically manipulated my heart and then sewed my chest back together with steel.  And just think - she was in that hospital and in surgery in less than a 24 hour time period so this moved very quickly.  Yikes.  I can't even begin to imagine and am thinking I will only be eating only salads for the rest of my life.  Or until next week when I fall off the wagon.  I'm ba-ack (at least a little).

Anyway, Chef and his family are hoping she will be more coherent tomorrow so they can see with their own eyes that their mom is going to fully pull through.  Unless you hear otherwise from me...she is on the mend.

Thank you again everyone.  I never would have thought when I started this blog a few months ago that it would be such a community of support.  You are the best.


Unplanned Uncertainty

We've got some craziness going on over here people; an interruption in scheduling, if you will, so this is not the planned post.  Allow me to explain.

Saturday was an extremely sad day for me.  In a bizarre twist of fate, just before bed at 2am on Saturday, I googled an old bestie's mom's name to make sure the telephone number I had for her in my mind was still valid after 10 years because I planned to call her and catch up later in the day.  Imagine my shock when it was her obituary that greeted me instead.  

I can't even begin to describe how stunned I was staring at that computer screen.  My heart crashed to my stomach while memories of my friend's very young mom laughing and talking with us flooded my mind.  There were flashes of feelings, vivid close-ups of my friend, her mom, their cat hiding in a grocery bag (?), and pain.  Wave upon wave of emotion swept over me within seconds and I burst into tears.  (haven't really stopped)

It's fascinating to me how these two people from my past have been on my mind constantly for 6 months, and I chose to look her up on the very day of her memorial.  What are the odds?  This is an experience I will never, ever, forget.  A gnawing reminder to slow down and listen to the inner voice.  I am filled to the brim with regret.

image via notebookdoodles

I don't want to go into any more detail than this, which I trust you understand.  My friend and I have spoken at length and the entire thing is devastating, which goes without saying.  More than anything I really wanted to share the circumstances around the discovery because they were so "coincidental" - yet in hindsight so absolutely guided.  On that note, I'm going to swallow one lump in my throat and dart off to another.

The Chef's mom had some chest pains on the tennis court yesterday so went to visit her doctor today.  Ended up having an angioplasty and, in an absolute scary and shocking turn of events, is having a quadruple bypass in the morning (today, Thursday).  Everything is happening very fast, so I'm going to bed to get some rest.  I tend to pass time by anxiously shopping online to distract myself, so don't be offended if I post some find or fifty tomorrow during the day. 

Normally I would not go into so much personal detail, but for some reason felt compelled to share this with all of you.

Jesus take the wheel - literally.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Thrifting With a Burn

This past Saturday was one of the first nice beach days we've had in SoCal this summer.   We drove off in the afternoon to lay out and get some much needed zzzz's.  I put on my 85 block just in case.  I put on a lot.  Did I mention I put on a lot?  Yeah.  Just wanted to make sure you knew I put on a lot.

 Yes I just outed my sunscreen that has been highly effective on several other occasions.

As we walked back to the car approximately 2 hours later I told the Chef I didn't think I had gotten much color.  However within 1 hour of leaving the beach we were dealing with the onset of Sunburn 2010 that resulted in the downing of litres of water, a bunch of advil, and a gangload of barbecue while we screamed the remainder of the day away in pain.  Shudder.

Amidst the chernobyl skin disaster, I dimly recalled the UPS man delivering a package on Friday.  At some point I hobbled over to examine its contents.  Remember my self-professed love for the bubble skirt?  Well I would like to thank you J.Crew for sale + an additional 20% off.  "Welcome home Friend," I said to it in Nancy Grace's friend voice.  Saturday gave way to Sunday where I could be found in very loose fitting clothing, spun out on advil (move over lindsay lohan) and slathered in aloe vera to ward off pain and distant peeling, all up in Anthropologie trying to pretend I was "just looking" while really seeking a belt in order to mask the elasticized waistband of new skirt friend.  So much for self-imposed wallet restriction.

That's not me at Anthropologie.  That's me in my bubble and one of the new belts longingly looking into, what I believe may be, a jackpot thrift shop.  I've always wanted to learn the ins and outs of productive and effective thrifting.  Suffice it to say I have not been successful to date.  It doesn't help one hone one's nonexistent skills when the store's closed either, thanks.

It did, however, afford me the opportunity to look closely into the window without having to fear going in and being identified as the obvious non-experienced thrifter extraordinaire. I have to say, on another note, that I am in love with my new bubble.

Look at it up close.  It's made out of chino so it retains a bit of crunch and, therefore, structure even after it's been worn awhile.  The brilliant minds at J.Crew put a tiny stitch in front and back mid-way up the skirt to give it that twisted and slightly disheveled look I love.  Paired with a simple James Perse crew neck it was ready to go.

The belt I scored at Anthropologie saves the skirt from being bo-rang by adding a zip of bad ass with the hammered silver buckle.  

It's the pull around and clasp style that was so popular in the 80's and 90's.  Welcome back other friend.

As I've said before I am uncomfortable in overly girly clothing so always looking for ways to take a feminine item and put my own spin on it.  In this case the accessories saved the day.  In addition to the belt, the rings, bracelet and shoes tied it all together keeping it feminine with a little edge.

 Dear J.Crew, you just won't quit will you?  Got this gem last year on drastic sale 
and just found it stuffed in a drawer.  
I love when that happens.  $100 bills are you out there??

Thanks again to Seventh Door and Corks and Caftans for hosting the fantastic bracelet giveaway I won!  I've been sleeping in this mother since it arrived.

Dear Steve Madden:  usually I am anti-knockoff but when Loeffler Randall sold out of this version last year you saved me from having to purchase my weight in Kleenexes.  Pass.  Love, Carrie

So anyway, what you can't tell is that I was writhing in pain during this expedition whereby we were driving en route to somewhere else when I hollered out THRIFT almost sending the Chef over the edge as we barreled around the corner only to discover the place was closed as I stared longingly into the window at what I highly suspect is a Marimekko lamp that is likely out of my price range while hipsters far and wide walked by looking at me like I was from outer space. 

Oh hipsters - I have lots of black in my closet, too.  And old army boots and plaid shirts.  And dirty fedoras that look like a Mac Truck ran them over, like, 7000 times or something.   I love dirt.

So at some point I just admitted defeat and took my burn back to the car and left.  You will not evade me thrifting.  Someday I will understand you.  Until then...

Outfit details:  Tom Ford Sunglasses, James Perse Crew Neck T, J.Crew Bubble Skirt, Anthropologie Belt, Melinda Maria Ring, J.Crew Ring, Seventh Door Bracelet, Steve Madden Shoes.


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