"We tend to forget that happiness doesn't come as a result of getting something we don't have, but rather of recognizing and appreciating what we do have". - Frederick Koenig

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Drink of the Moment, 4th of July Edition: Melted Bomb Pop

It's Independence Day this week for the old US of A, and that means drinks all around!!  What says summertime and America (and on sooo many levels) more than the traditional stand-by at swimming pools and ice cream stands all over this nation - the 'Bomb Pop'?  Who can forget eating them as a kid and winding up with that classic blue mouth afterwards?  So, I figured why not work up a nifty adult version to celebrate the season with all of the fun, flavor, and nostalgic fondness with a little more 'pop', if you will, and a little less of the blue mouth aftermath.  Ready to accompany all of your grilling and fireworks festivities, I present to you 'The Melted Bomb Pop'.  

The Melted Bomb Pop

Splash of Rose's Grenadine
1 part Stolichnaya Wild Cherri Vodka  
2 parts UV Blue, Raspberry Flavored Vodka
3 parts Sparkling Lemonade (I used 'Sparkling Ice' Lemonade)
Popsicle stick

Start by ensuring that all items have been chilled for at least 24 hours.  (I keep my vodkas in the freezer, and my mixers in the fridge).  Once chilled thoroughly, put a generous splash of Rose's Grenadine Syrup into a champagne flute, or similarly shaped glass.  Add 1 part (1 oz for a single cocktail) Stoli Wild Cherri vodka, and let settle.  Once settled, slowly add 1 1/2 parts UV Blue vodka, pouring over the back of a spoon to layer the liquor; let settle.  Once settled, slowly pour 3 parts of your sparkling lemonade over the back of a spoon to layer; let settle.  At this point, your lemonade should have fallen to the middle of the glass, separating the red and blue.  Once stable, slowly add the extra 1/2 part of UV Blue to the top, using the spoon method to layer, to ensure you have a strong blue finish to your beverage.  Garnish with a plain popsicle stick if you have one handy.  Enjoy!!

**Note: If the 'melted' aspect of the cocktail doesn't have you super excited, you can also whip this up as a frozen 'Deconstructed Bomb Pop', if you will, by adding shaved ice with each layer.  If you give this method a try, be sure that you layer your ice with each layer of the drink so you maintain the color separation.

If you like what you see, let me know!  Also, don't forget to click the 'Join This Site' button at the top right of the homepage to make sure you have a drink for every moment.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Drink of the Moment, Birthday Edition: Mint Chocolate Chip Cake

Batter up!  Next in this special birthday edition series 'Drink of the Moment' is chocolate-y, mint-y, and so so yummy.  For the love of all things good, you are going to want to try this cake-tail.  It has been my birthday boy's favorite so far.  If you've missed the first two, you can find them by clicking here, and here.  :) 

Mint Chocolate Chip Cake-tail

1oz Chocolate Liquer
1oz Creme de Menthe
Chocolate Whip-a-hol
Chocolate shavings, sprinkles, etc

Place first three ingredients in a shaker over ice.  Shake vigorously, and pour into glass.  Top with whipped cream or whip-a-hol, and garnish with chocolate, or use crushed cookies to rim the glass prior to filling.  Enjoy!

If you like what you see, let me know!  Also, don't forget to click the 'Join This Site' button at the top right of the homepage to make sure you have a drink for every moment.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Drink of the Moment, Birthday Edition: Cherry Cheesecake

Let the birthday cake-tails continue!  Second in the lineup packs the punch of a cheesecake without all of the calories and just as much (if not more) of the fun.

Cherry Cheesecake-tail

1oz Three Olives Cake vodka
1oz Stoli Wild Cherri
Splash of Butterscotch Schnapps
1/2oz White Cranberry Juice
Maraschino Cherries
Whipped Topping

Place first four ingredients in a shaker filled with ice.  Shake vigorously, and pour into glass.  Place maraschino cherry or two into glass and top with whipped topping.  Dig in!

If you like what you see, let me know!  Also, don't forget to click the 'Join This Site' button at the top right of the homepage to make sure you have a drink for every moment.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Drink of the Moment, Birthday Edition: Jay's Birthday Chocolate Cake Martini

Yay, it's Jay's birthday this week(end), and that means cake for everyone!  There isn't much that I like more than cake, though a good soup runs a close second.  Cake and soup, soup and cake ... it makes me smile just thinking about them.  Not everyone has the same affinity for a hearty slice of cake though, even if it is their birthday.  It is in this area that I suppose Jay and I balance each other out a bit- otherwise I might have a fairly poor diet going on.  So, what do you do when the birthday boy isn't anxiously looking forward to acquiring a whole cake of his own?  Well, I say you build an idea on a tried and true favorite and turn that into the best hybrid birthday cake a guy (or girl) could ask for.  In the past I have used things like stacked brownies, etc, but this year it's all about the birthday cake cocktail.  I know Jay is already a convert, and I don't think any guests joining in the celebration will miss the traditional cake one bit either.  Even better, since there isn't just one big cake to share, everyone gets a say in what kind of cake they want to drink and I'll be sharing a few of varieties with you over the next day or so.  On a side note, all of these are made with Three Olives 'Cake' vodka, which I highly recommend acquiring if it's not already in your arsenal.  Seriously, you are missing out on life if you don't try it.  So on that note, cake for everyone - starting with Jay's first chocolate cake martini.  In his own words, after finishing in record speed  ... "It's tasty!"

Chocolate Cake Martini

1oz Three Olive Cake Vodka
1oz Godiva Chocolate liquer
1oz Bailey's
German Chocolate Whipahol
Godiva Hot Chocolate Mix

Place first 3 ingredients in shaker filled with ice.  Shake vigorously.  Pour into glass, and top with German Chocolate Whipahol; sprinkle with hot chocolate mix. Enjoy!

If you like what you see, let me know!  Also, don't forget to click the 'Join This Site' button at the top right of the homepage to make sure you have a drink for every moment.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Drink of the Moment: Rumchata Colada

No one ever said that drinking will make you skinny, so my cocktail better be worth it if it's going to have the potential to make me go up a size.  This especially holds true for the standard Pina Colada.  Once upon a summer, in a galaxy far far away - I'll call it my youth - I may have had a fair sprinkling of this fair frozen creamy pineapple-y coconut-y drink during the warmer months, but these days the harsh reality of the calorie has set in, and I usually only splurge on one of these fat floats once a year.  This year, that special moment happened to come early for me with the first really warm snap we had.   

You may remember that I LOATHE pre-fabbed mixers where you just add the alcohol, and will usually not even waste my efforts in that direction.  The Pina Colada is no exception -- well, unless maybe I'm sitting at the infinity pool bar in a wonderfully tropical location.  Anyway, I digress.  When Jay wanted whip up some Pina Coladas from scratch (which is really a lot easier than it may sound ... and yummier too), I was only luke-warm to the idea with it being so early in the season.  I mean, did I really want to blow my single Pina Pass this early this year?  And then, something magical happened that changed my perspective.  I realized I could try making it this way ... sans pineapple!


Ice Cubes
1/2 cup light rum (I used Bacardi)
1/2 cup Rumchata
1/2 cup coconut cream
1/4 cup coconut milk
Fresh pineapple & maraschino cherries for garnish

Fill blender with ice cubes.  Add rum, Rumchata, coconut cream, and coconut milk.  Blend until smooth.  Pour into your glass, and garnish with fruit.

YUMM-tastic I tell you.  It really was all that even without the pineapple (well, except for the garnish), and who doesn't love having a whole pitcher of happy sitting right in your fridge - even if it does mean you have to eat nothing but lettuce for a day or two.  If you don't have Rumchata in your local market, try picking up some horchata and adding a little more rum, or maybe finding a recipe for it ... like this one here.  Totally.  Worth.  It.  The best part about all of this though; I am technically still holding on to that annual 'Pina Pass' if I do find myself at some fabulous infinity pool bar in a tropical vacation spot feeling mighty thirsty.  Splurge on!     

If you like what you see, let me know!  Just click the 'Join This Site' button at the top right of the homepage to make sure you have a drink for every moment.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

What Is It With My Hair?!?!

Timing is everything.  Seriously.  Take my hair for example.  I don't know what exactly it is about it, but when I reeeally need some damage control (thank you multiple process bleaching followed by a razor cut), I can't seem to locate the fix.  When my hair seems to be back on track and looking fairly snazzy, I have hair repair product falling into my lap.  Go figure.  

A few weeks ago, I received a complimentary Aveda Damage Remedy Daily Hair Repair through my Vogue Influencers Network to take out for a test drive.  A few of you may remember another hair repair product that I tested out about a year ago through Sephora and Vogue (and if you don't, you can hop back in time to it by clicking right here), and if you recall (or re-read), you'll also notice that I was initially at a loss for what the product actually did and/or didn't do.  Why?  Probably because my hair was already looking and feeling pretty good at that point.  Of course, since that trial I have encountered some big 'ole nasty.

The good news?  After using that previous product in conjunction with my Aveda Color Conserve shampoo and conditioner on some seriously fried fringe, it works magic on crunchy bleached hair, and frayed split ends.  The slightly bad news?  Because my hair was already being propped up by a different repair product (and I couldn't just not use anything for any period of time with the knowledge that I could not feasibly wear a hat 24/7), I had a little difficulty in seeing any drastic change for the better in my mop after using the Aveda Daily Hair Repair.  Back to good news?  I also didn't see any change for the worse after switching to the Aveda Daily Hair Repair.  Yay for everyone who has to see my hair on a daily basis! I am also happy to report that it didn't leave my hair sticky, oily, or weighed down - just soft and smooth.  Oh, and even more good news?  It costs less in my market than the other product I was using.     

I'm a little sad that I don't have any before or after pictures worth sharing with you, but what I can share with you are Aveda's bragging rights about the product.  Aveda’s Damage Remedy™ Daily Hair Repair is 97% naturally derived (from plants and non-petroleum minerals), instantly repairs damage by 26% (after 1 application of Daily Hair Repair in a clinical tensile test), and helps protect from heat styling. With the plant power of Damage Remedy™ Daily Hair Repair, it’s your daily dose for healthy-looking hair.  After using it myself, I can't speak in percentages, but I don't see anything that doesn't support the claim.  Plus, it smells like all of the other Aveda products -- fantastic.

Speaking of other products, have a look at the whole damage remedy line just queueing up for the next hair disaster.

The gentle daily shampoo helps repair damage with quinoa protein, while nurturing with rich coconut and babassu-lending new life to hair. 

The intensive weekly treatment deeply penetrates to help repair, seal and smooth even the most damaged hair. 

The Damage Remedy™ Daily Hair Repair helps protect from heat styling with wheat protein and detangles with soy oil

The kit uses the power of pure plant oils and quinoa protein, so it restores health, silkiness and shine. 

Think you might be ready to try some out for yourself?  Hop on over to Aveda.com, and check out all of their offerings for your whatever hair needs you might have right now.

If you like what you see, join in!  Just click the 'Join This Site' button at the top right of the homepage to keep up with Vogue fashion exclusives, new product launches, events, beauty reviews and more.  See it first, hear it first, know it first.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Drink of the Moment: Honey DO!

It's Memorial Day weekend, and we all know what that means!  Good times, good friends, and  ... good grief it's been a long time since I've done a Drink of the Moment!  For those of you that thought I had fallen ON the wagon (you know who you are), NEVER FEAR for I am back with a fantastic beverage for whatever upcoming weekend fete you might be gearing up for.  I call it the 'Honey Do' since it's sweet, melony, and easy enough for your someone else to whip up for you all afternoon so you don't have to lift a finger.  Sounds perfect, no?  Oh, and let me not forget to mention that it is neon green.  Who doesn't have fun drinking a glowy green drink - a total DO .  Give it a chug (or three) and let me know what you think!

The Honey Do

3/4-1oz Stoli Sticki honey flavored vodka
2oz Midori melon liquer
1/2 oz lime juice
1/2 oz simple syrup
Club Soda
Lime &/or blackberry for garnish

Mix first 4 ingredients in a shaker filled with ice and shake vigorously.  Pour into your glass, top with club soda, and garnish with fruit.  Easy peasy.

You can also do this one up instead of on the rocks if it tickles your fancy.  Just be sure to reduce the lime and simple syrup slightly so they don't overpower the flavor of the melon, or maybe add some more Midori if you go this route.  Either way, your own fate lies in the balance here, and the last thing anyone wants is to taste something gone horribly awry called a 'Honey Don't'.


If you like what you see, let me know!  Just click the 'Join This Site' button at the top right of the homepage to make sure you have a drink for every moment.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Max It Out This Summer

It's not every week that you get invited to take a first look at an exclusive lookbook shot by fashion photog Phillip Dixon.  Thanks to my friends at the Vogue Influencer Network, we are some of the very first folks to view the stunning fashion photography and dreamy dresses featured in the Leon Max Collection Summer 2012 Lookbook.  If you're not already familiar with the fashion of Leon Max, or MaxStudio.com then get ready to be formally introduced, and if you're already an old friend, then you'll love the flowing asymmetric draping in the Summer 2012 collection that has become synonymous with the brand.  Find your new favorites below, and gear up to max it out in more ways than one this summer once this exquisite collection hits the racks in your favorite department store, or online at MaxStudio.com

Gussets that fall from an asymmetric seam create the soft, feminine textures, and magical hemline movement of this dress.

Ethereal, romantic and dramatic, with a one shoulder silhouette and lots of movement, it’s all that an evening dress should be.

Ribbons of fabric traverse the body and cascade whimsically to the hem of this floor grazing dress.

Dark and enchanting, this textural lace and mesh dress with a floor sweeping length radiates romance.

This silky dress has a minimal, boudoir inspired front and a dramatically draped back that features soft textures, floaty movement and a sexy glimpse of skin.

The luxurious silk chiffon fabric of the dress has an eye-catching iridescence with an intricately patterned seamless slip underneath to create a stunning visual effect.

Wear this knockout silk georgette dress any time you want to stand out in a sea of lackluster LBDs.

This floaty dress has the easy glamour of a maxi silhouette with details both romantic and sexy.

Fashioned from floaty silk chiffon with an eye-catching iridescence, the simple silhouette of this dress is dramatized with a gorgeously draped shoulder that lends Goddess-like glamour.

This incredible dress fashioned from an electric hued gossamer silk chiffon has a softly crinkled texture and luxurious fluidity.

This dress is modernized with beautiful textural contrasts and a cheeky play between opaque and sheer.

This soft and romantic crinkled silk chiffon dress has a textured floral appliqué that travels on a slight diagonal from the bust and across the middle.

A watercolour floral design that blossoms across the body lends a vintage feel to this dress while asymmetrical elements at the neck and hem make it modern.

The silhouette of this crinkled silk chiffon halter dress has ethereal movement and a soft hand-painted watercolour floral design that feels mysterious on the black backdrop of the fabric.

Layer this sexy tee under a classic suit, pair with menswear trousers to create a chic feminine/masculine contrast or wear with jeans to add instant glam.

Boudoir styles are a huge trend for the season and this pair of shorts with built in opaque under-short is a clever and wearable way to get the trend.

A refined play between opaque and sheer lends an unexpected edge to the charming ballet silhouette of this dress.

This party-perfect dress has an asymmetric sensibility highlighted by a panel of iridescent paillettes running down the body to add eye-catching shimmer.

This soft and feminine dress, cut from a blushing pink silk georgette, sparkles with a panel of iridescent paillettes. 

If you like what you see, join in!  Just click the 'Join This Site' button at the top right of the homepage to keep up with Vogue fashion exclusives, new product launches, events, beauty reviews and more.  See it first, hear it first, know it first.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

I Might Just Become a Bag Lady Afterall

Do you know those days that are kind of give you that crappy 'beige' feeling?  You know, like nothing is going exceptionally bad (or necessarily even going at all), but nothing is really going good either ... stagnant, blah, ... generally just a boring crappy beige like this ...

... combined with a little of Paula Deen's Snuggie-licious crappy beige sweater.

Really Paula Deen, this is what you choose to wear on national television with all of the money you make?!?! 

Today being a Thursday (as opposed to say and Monday or Tuesday), I should have been feeling fairly uplifted with the weekend on its way, food in the fridge, and the good fortune of not having to wake up and cope with male pattern baldness on a daily basis (sorry guys).  You'd think just that last little thought alone would be enough to carry me through more than a boring Thursday, but alas, I am me, and there is no stopping the unending mysteries that create my state-of-mind at any given moment.   For me, today was mostly mediocre, slightly boring beige ... that is until I received an unexpected, fairly large-sized package on my front porch taped all over with important-looking 'Stop' signs boldly warning me to check the contents before signing a receipt if the box seal was broken. Ah, the mystery, the intrigue, the ... danger?  Whatever it was, it was bye bye to my crappy beige day!  Imagine my surprise when I made my way through all of that threatening tape to find this!

Yes-siree-Bob, that is exactly what it looks like - a surprise gift through my Vogue Influencers Network from the Brahmin Spring 2012 collection!  Yay!  Let's open it further, shall we?

Brahmin Glossy Medium Arno Tote, in the flesh.
OMG!!  (Well, that's what it was like when I opened it anyway).  Glistening in the overhead light, was this amazing perfectly sized hybrid tote/purse from the Brahmin 'Glossy' Collection. 

Now I've never been a real 'bag lady' like some, but I have thoroughly enjoyed all of the previous Brahmin collections that I've seen through my Vogue Network (if you've missed them, or you just want to gaze longingly at them again, you can revisit them here, here, here, & here).  At this moment, I might just do a dance and become a bag lady afterall - especially since I want the matching wallet, wristlet, and key ring now.  I am sooo all about this bag that it's not even funny.  It has fragranced my entire den with the warm smell of new leather (I wish there was a virtual scratch-and-sniff to share here), and is meticulously crafted to combine exquisite detail with probably the most practicality I've ever had in a handbag.  Soooo, if you were ever teetering on the verge of a purchase after ogling over the new Brahmin collections as they popped up in print ads, department stores, or, of course, my blog; I can say personally at this point that you will not be disappointed in your investment.  Quite the contrary, you will want to trade it all in and become a bag lady with me.  You can start picking out yours right away at Brahmin.com!

If you like what you see, join in!  Just click the 'Join This Site' button at the top right of the homepage to keep up with Vogue fashion exclusives, new product launches, events, beauty reviews and more.  See it first, hear it first, know it first.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Heads Up: Free Aveda Damage Remedy Is On The Way!


Just in time for warm weather and all of the damaged hair that comes with it (pool, beach, hairbands that cause nasty breakage), my friends as the Vogue Influencer Network are hooking me up with a complimentary Aveda Damage Remedy Daily Hair Repair.  Even better news?  They're also throwing in a 3-piece Damage Remedy sample pack to share with one other lucky follower out there.  I mean, who doesn't already love Aveda and their super-smelling, naturally derived products??  The only thing better than giving your hair this royal treatment is getting it for free!!

So watch for for my upcoming posts to find out more on how you can secure yourself some free Aveda Damage Remedy product, and in the meantime, why don't you get a leg up on your chance at free stuff by clicking that 'join the site' button to the right if you haven't already.  You know you, and your hair, really want to!

If you like what you see, join in!  Just click the 'Join This Site' button at the top right of the homepage to keep up with Vogue fashion exclusives, new product launches, events, beauty reviews, freebies and more.  See it first, hear it first, know it first.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Easter on Parade

It's that time of year again!  Some of you may remember the famous annual Monument Avenue Easter on Parade tradition from last year, (or revisit it  by clicking here, if you don't), and yesterday the parade was in full swing yet again.  So, as your Easter candy sugar high slowly winds down, here's a look back at all of the Easter bonnets and bunny ears from yesterday's fête.    

Olivia is decked out in her Easter eggs and bunny ears, ready to parade around town!

The hunt for the Easter bunny begins.

Jay and Olivia hitting the road.

Where is that bunny? 

Our first Easter bonnet sighting.

Fresh cut flowers ...

... but still no bunny.

What is scarier than a clown on the loose?  A giant clown on the loose.

Maybe the bunny is this way?

Water break!

Me, in my Great Grandmother's 'Easter Bonnet,' and Olivia in her egg hunt outfit take a break in the shade.

Check out these two canines showing us all a thing or two about how to sport an Easter bonnet

... and this dashing fellow looking dapper in his Easter tie.

It's an impromptu sidewalk band!

Those cooler than cool pups getting even cooler with some help from a quick doggie dip.

Some seriously festive head gear.

Balloon art on someone's front porch.

Hunting the elusive Easter bunny has proven quite a task, requiring even more water.

There is only one way left to go; that bunny must be this way.

Sipping mint juleps on the front porch

No Easter bunny for Olivia, but she did meet someone better.  Watch out Carrie Bradshaw, this is the real Mr Big! 

O is all smiles about her new friend...

... and Mr Big looks a little taken with Olivia, and all of those 'toys' around her neck as well.

Happy Easter!