Thursday, July 31, 2014

Garden Apartment Tour {Kitchen}

Finally I got around to taking some proper pictures of my apartment, which I'll be sharing all week.  Kicking it off with the kitchen - the cheeriest, kitschiest part of the house. 
kitchen
My dad was the genius behind the fitted marble top to the metal rolling shelves. He made it himself.  Classy touch. 
kitchen
That window treatment is actually an Anthropologie tea towel, and served as inspiration for the whole kitchen - mint and cherry red. No sewing was involved in this project, just some hot glue, good scissors and screws. My mom can do a lot with some hot glue. 
kitchen
Makeshift "kitchen gallery wall": An ode to Sriracha, a strawberry painted cheese plate that used to my in my mom's apartment when she was my age and single, a noble tea towel, and my grandmother's vintage apron. 
kitchen
Showing off my collection of tins from around the world, mostly gifts from my dad's travels. Spray painted that $3 thrifted shelf. 
kitchen
Next project: get new knobs! 
kitchen

This light was my dad's idea - wire basket + light kit + Edison bulb. The table was $8 thrifted - glass included. I just spray painted the legs and stapled oil cloth to the top. The folding chairs were collecting dust in our basement and I just heavily spray painted them as well. 

I apologize for the poor lighting situation in these photos, one of the many perks to basement living. why can't I just live in one of those bright, amazingly lit Pinterest homes?!?

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

creativity.


Anyone else have a certain time of the day which they are most creative? 
Mine is unfortunately midnight till 3am...

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Summer Pins {Pinterest}

above: {source / pin it}
below: {source / pin it} // Mango, Avocado, & Black Bean Salad {source / pin it}
above: Peach Ginger Mule {source / pin it } // Strawberry Mango Salsa {source / pin it }
below: Boozy Citrus & Whipped Goat Cheese Popsicles {source / pin it}
One of the things that has been putting me in a good mood lately is Pinterest (and Bravo reality shows). It's been sort of an escape from reality really, reminding me to stay inspired and evolve my style. 
These are some pins from my Summer board. Hope these make you happy too. 
above: still need to find some overalls {source / pin it} // mermaid hair {source / pin it
below: {source / pin it

Friday, July 18, 2014

BBQ Chicken Quinoa Salad

BBQ Chicken Quinoa Salad
This couldn't be a simpler thing to throw together, to serve warm or cold. Sweet, tangy, and the popping texture of quinoa. I describe quinoa as popping, wouldn't you?
In a large bowl just mix together, 1.5 cups cooked quinoa, 1 can black beans, handful of corn or more, 16oz Trader Joes BBQ Pulled Pork (in the refrigerator section), a handful of shredded cheddar cheese and some diced avocados. Drizzle with some of your favorite BBQ sauce and voila! All done. 
Nom time. 
BBQ Chicken Quinoa Salad

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Chicago Lately...

Before this disruption in life I was telling you about a few days ago, summer was off to a good start. Looking back at these times, some just a few weeks ago, I am reminded that life goes on and will return to “normal” soon...
lightining
Caught a free concert AND thunderstorm in Millennium Park. Can you see the lightning reflection off the building? I don't know how I caught that moment. 
LM
My friend invited me to join her family on a pontoon boat ride. Even though we almost sunk the boat, it was super fun to catch the free fireworks show at Navy Pier (every Wed and Sat in the summer). 
trapeze
Yep, I went trapezing. Probably the most "daredevil" thing I've ever done. It's an awesome outdoor setting along the lake. I'm proud of myself for doing it, but I don't know if I have the guts to go again...
trapeze LM
LM trapeze marina trapeze girls
A few of my improv ladies after our graduation show. 
hotel lincoln
Hotel Lincoln, just the coolest boutique hotel ever.
conservatory conservatory
Flora at the Lincoln Park Conservatory (free! also next to the free zoo!)
alapash
New favorite store alert! Alapash
zoo mom
Flamingos at the Lincoln Park Zoo // glimpse of my parents visit
ellys
Adorable plate wall at Elly's Pancake House
conservatory greens
more Conservatory // Green - a gorg flower shop

Monday, July 14, 2014

Mixtape Monday: What I'm Listening to and Why

On heavy rotation lately, though not all new. 

1. Free the Animal - Sia (Loving her new album, 1000 Forms of Fear, right now this is my top track.)
2. Cold Case - St. Lucia (summery as ever)
3. Nothing Ordinary - Lucius
4. Stolen Dance - Milky Chance (smooth and groovy)
5. The Hours - Beach House (I need them to make some new music soon.)
6. Fair Game - Sia
7. Kingfisher - PHOX
8. Tin Foiled - Andrew Bird
9. Go Home - Lucius (They are quickly becoming a favorite of mine.)
10. Honey & I  - HAIM (I overlooked this song when I first heard it months ago, I don't know why.)
11. Master Pretender - First Aid Kit
12. In the Wind - Lord Huron (Another band that needs to release another album soon.)
13. L.I.F.E.G.O.E.S.O.N. - Noah and the Whale (This song is exactly what I need right now.)

listen:

Thursday, July 10, 2014

This past week has been the hardest week of my life. Without getting into details, and in an effort to keep this blog on a positive note, I just want you all to know that I am okay, just my world has been shaken up a bit. One day I'll be able to write about it with more clarity, but it's going to take time. 
Honestly, I didn't know I had this much strength until thrown this situation, handed this "life experience" - and didn't know how many people thought I was this strong. The tragic, unexpected things in life can make us learn so much about ourselves and how others think of us too. I've never second guessed my move to Chicago, but this situation has truly showed me how many people here in this city truly care for me and love me. I have a foundation here, a second family.
Like this quote above I'm learning that I HAVE control over how I handle things, and it has given me a sense of power and courage. At the same time I am exploring my feelings and letting myself just experience them as to bottling them up. 
I'm taking all measures in my life right now to return to normalcy and routine as that's how I think I will heal most efficiently. Returning to work, working out, cooking, blogging, improvising, laughing. 
After the winter, I told myself I would never take leaves and grass for granted again, and I have just been reminded how blessed I am for things I always took for granted like my upbringing, my ever accepting and loving parents, mental and physical health, and my belief in God. 
I've always had a healthy appreciation for life, I've occasionally cried at nature for Christ's sake, but it has just now been magnified. 
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