Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Every generation needs a new revolution.

Have ya'll heard Miranda Lambert's new CD Revolution yet? If not, you MUST go buy it right this second. It is an AWESOME CD!!! There are not many CD's that I buy and end up liking every single song...but this is one of 'em! I was a bit disappointed yesterday because I heard my FAVE-O-RITE song from this CD (The House That Built Me) on the RADIO!!!!!! I mean she definitely deserves it...but I liked to think I was keeping it to myself! Do ya'll ever get like that when they end up releasing your favorite song? You just know that now everyone is going to love it and it's going to be completely played out on the radio. boo.

Click HERE to listen to clips from the songs. I promise you'll love them. After you're done listening, tell me your favorite CD of the moment!!! Has anyone gotten the new Lady Antebellum yet? I'm loving their new song "American Honey". I wonder if the rest of the album is just as good? Stay sweet guys!

No time like the present!

I've been searching for the perfect white watch for a while now. I have found a couple that I like but I have yet to break down and purchase one. Every so often I remember that I really do want one and start the whole process again. Here are some of my favorites!! I think I like the Fossil one the best with the little pink stones!! So cute! What about ya'll??

DKNY Jelly Watch - $95.00 at Nordstrom

Guess Waterpro Watch - $125.00 at Dillards

Fossil White Resin Watch w/ pink stones - $84.99 at

Nixon Spree Watch - $69.99 at

And a couple just for fun...

Chanel J12 White Ceramic Watch - $8,277.50 at

Technomarine UF6 Watch - $3,510.00 at

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Upcoming posts!!!

Hello darlings!! I wanted to do a quick post so ya'll can see some of the goodies I have coming up for you! Let me know if there's anything else you'd like to see!!

*Strawberry birthday cupcakes...YUM!!!

*First installment of "A Little Inspiration for Your Day"

*The PERFECT nude lipstick/lipgloss combination along with some of my other favorite lipsticks and glosses.

*My guest bathroom project

*Spring Fashion

*Pictures from a baby shower I hosted for my best friend. :)

*My first FOTD

*My gardening project

...and many more!! So stay tuned! :)

And while I'm posting, I think I'll share my fabulous new bracelet I got on sale at the Juicy Couture store. They had one with a little cupcake on it too. I know!!! Perfect right?! But the bracelet was lime green and the cupcake had a red stone in it. Not real cute. I chose this one instead.

Operation: Lose 18 lbs by Mother's Day

There is no particular reason for losing it by Mother's Day...that's just how it turned out. First I will give some background information. I got married about 4 years ago and on my wedding day I'd like to say I was a bit chubs. You would think I would have started a weight loss program BEFORE my wedding day...but, as those people who use annoying cliches would say (p.s. I'm one of them.)...hindsight's twenty twenty! A couple years after I got married I decided to lose the weight. I lost about 15 lbs in 2 months and it was great! I ate wheat bread only, no white bread, pasta or potatoes. I ate sweet potatoes, grilled chicken and fish, fruit, steamed sweets, no creamy dressings or sauces and I only drank water! I didn't exercise very much. I line dance and I might have been doing west coast swing dancing then but I wasn't doing anything hardcore. So I got pretty comfortable after I lost those 15 lbs and I slowly but surely started eating WHATEVER I wanted. I don't know about ya'll but I LOVE food. Food is what makes my day worthwhile and my trips interesting and my parties fun and my holidays memorable. If you invite me somewhere, I will think of what great food we can have when we go! Camping?? Awesome! We can have hot dogs, hamburgers, potato chips, s'mores!! Christmas time? Gingerbread cookies and milk, deep fried turkey, maccaroni and cheese, my grandma's homemade candy!! Anyway, I pretty much gained those 15 lbs back and a few more to grow on. All through the 2 years when I knew I was gaining back I kept searching for that willpower I had before. On top of my addiction to food, I was diagnosed with a hormone disorder. Basically when your hormones are out of whack...don't expect to be in tip top shape. That brings me to the start of my current weight loss program that, with only God to thank, I have been on for almost 3 months!

I started this weight loss program on January 10th. With my hormones still not entirely on the right track, I was worried. The first week I did everything I knew to do. No white breads, pasta or potatoes. Lean meats, veggies, fruit AND I was exercising like you wouldn't believe. On my cable I have an Exercise On Demand channel that has tons of different workouts you can do. Every night I was doing one. One night would be Bootylicious Buns...the next would be Gilad's Abs! Well I wasn't getting bootylicious buns and my abs definitely did not look like Gilad's. After about 2 weeks I was still the SAME weight! I started to worry that I wouldn't be able to lose weight at all. A couple weeks later after only losing about 1-2 pounds I knew I had to make a change. I got to really thinking about the whole weight loss thing and if you get down to the nitty gritty of it...weight loss is about one thing. Burning more calories than you take in! According to

A pound of fat represents approximately 3500 calories of stored energy. In order to lose a pound of fat, you have to use 3500 more calories than you consume. It's best not to do this over the course of a day; you'd probably hurt yourself, and your body (knowing it, the uncooperative creature) would probably have some extreme reaction which did not involve you losing any actual weight. It's better to spread this out over a week, so that you aim to exceed your caloric requirements by 3500 to 7000 calories per week, resulting in weight loss of one to two pounds per week. It's not healthy to try to lose more than two pounds in a week, and if you do attempt to do so you're unlikely to be successful. Let's say you want to lose two pounds per week. To do so, you need to figure out how many calories a person of your age, sex, and weight usually needs in a day, subtract 500 from that amount, and follow a diet that provides you with that many calories.

Here's how!! I'll just use a random number as an example.

1. Take your current weight (150)

2. For women, multiply that number by 11. (150 X 11 = 1650)

3. Take a third of your body weight and multiply it by how many hours you are NOT asleep. Usually this is about 16. (150 divided by 3 = 50. 50 x 16 = 800)

4. Take your first number (1650) and add it to your second number (800) and you will get the amount of calories you require per day. (1650 + 800 = 2450)

So, since you have to take in 3500 calories less to lose one pound, to lose one pound in a week you need to take in 500 calories less per day. (2450 - 500 = 1950) If you want to lose 2 pounds in a week, you would need to take in 1000 calories less per day. (2450 - 1000 = 1450)

After I learned this valuable information, I could understand why I wasn't losing weight. I was eating healthy foods, but I was eating a lot of them! I was probably taking in around the same amount of calories that I was before, just with healthier foods!! I decided to stick to a calorie budget and let me tell you it works!!! I have lost 9 pounds so far. I have 9 more to go and I'll be at my goal!! Just remember that you also want to keep your fat grams and sodium low. Another important thing to keep in mind is DRINK WATER! Drink a lot of water and it will help with weight loss. I've heard that it flushes out the fat that you are burning. I don't know if that's true or not, but for whatever reason, water aids weight loss. What has helped me tremendously is an application called Lose It! on my iPhone. I enter everything I eat and it tells me how many calories I have eaten so far and how many I left for the day. It has tons of nutritional facts in it. It has most foods and it even has some restaurant foods. If it doesn't have something, I will go on the internet and find it then manually enter it in the application. If you don't have an iPhone, there are tons of these programs online. A good one to try is FitTracker. It's free!

Good luck to everyone out there trying to lose weight!! It's not easy but you can do it if you have the correct information and a little bit of willpower! I'll be posting weight loss tips and information along with some healthy recipes that I've made. Let me know how ya'll are doing! We can all support each other!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Spring is in the air!

I have found a great creamy pink nail polish just in time for Spring!! I got it last week at Charlotte Russe while I was shopping for a cute sundress. Every time I go shopping I end up having a theme. This shopping trip's theme turned out to be bright and floral. Here's the sundress I chose.

Here's me wearing it this weekend on my trip to New Orleans!! This is me and my husband in Jackson Square. P.S. New Orleans was one of the BEST places I've ever been!! The music, the food, the excitement! I just couldn't get enough of it!!! If you've never been, I definitely recommend it! I'll share some more pictures from my trip soon!

Okay on to the nail polish! Unfortunately it doesn't have a name!! Who ever heard of such??? I guess I'll have to make one up. How about Strawberries 'n' Cream? Not very original I know...but it fits nonetheless!

What nail polish are you digging this Spring??

Sunshine Cupcakes

Oh how I love Spring!! When it starts to get warm and it's the perfect weather to sit out on the screened in porch and read a book I just get so excited. Since we are just transitioning from Winter to Spring, I thought Sunshine cupcakes would be the perfect name! I chose a fluffy vanilla cupcake with lemon curd filling and whipped cream cheese icing. My husband, who doesn't like lemon, thought they were great! He said the lemon curd filling was not too tart but not too sweet. I sent them to work with him the next day and everyone seemed to love them. They were gone pretty quickly so that's got to say something! Here's the recipes I used. The icing is a light whipped icing but the cream cheese makes it sturdier than the regular whipped cream icings. It pairs so well with the fluffy cupcake and the lemon filling and makes a light Spring/Summer cupcake!

Fluffy Vanilla Cupcakes

1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temperature

1 cup of granulated sugar

2 large eggs, seperated, at room temperature

2 tablespoons of vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour (I used unbleached and it worked out just fine!)

1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder

1/4 teaspoon of salt (I used iodized table salt)

1/2 cup of milk (I used 2% reduced fat)

1/8 teaspoon of cream of tartar

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line cupcake pan with liners.

2. With an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the butter for about 2 minutes until soft. Add the sugar and beat for about 3 minutes until light and fluffy. Add the egg yolks one at a time beating after adding each one. Add the vanilla extract and beat until everything is combined.

3. In a seperate bowl combine the flour (I wasn't sure so I went ahead and sifted it first), baking powder and salt.

4. With the mixer at a low speed, alternately add the flour mixture and milk until combined.

5. In a small bowl with cleaned mixer on high, beat the egg whites until foamy. Add the cream of tartar and continue beating until stiff peaks form. With a rubber spatula stir a small amount of the whites into the batter to lighten it up. Then fold the remaining whites in until combined. Do not overmix!

6. Fill the cupcake liners 3/4 full. Bake for about 15-20 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. **Remember, check with toothpick at the lowest time first to keep from overcooking.** Cool cupcakes in pan for about 15 minutes then remove from pan for about 15 minutes before filling or icing.

While the cupcakes were cooking, I got to work on the icing and filling. Here is the magnificent lemon curd filling recipe I used. I highly recommend it!!

Lemon Curd Filling

1 0.25 ounce packet of unflavored gelatin

1 1/2 cups of warm water

2 egg yolks

1 1/2 cups of granulated sugar

3 tablespoons of cornstarch

1 tablespoon of unsalted butter at room temperature

1/3 cup of fresh-squeezed lemon juice

1. In a medium bowl, sprinkle the gelatin over the warm water and let it sit for a few minutes to soften. (Don't let it sit too long or the gelatin sticks to the bottom of the bowl.)

2. Beat the egg yolks in another small bowl and set aside.

3. In a medium saucepan combine the sugar and cornstarch, then gradually whisk in the water and gelatin. Heat over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it thickens and boils. Boil for about a minute, then remove from heat and pour a little into the egg yolks. Beat together then gradually add back into the gelatin mixture. Return to the heat and simmer for about a minute. 4. Remove from the heat and beat in butter and lemon juice until smooth. (I was so excited and in such a hurry that I started filling the cupcakes right away but it was too runny. It really should refrigerate for a little while to thicken up first.)

Whipped Cream Cheese Icing

1 (8 oz) package of cream cheese at room temperature. (I used the low fat cream cheese and it worked just fine.)

1/2 cup of granulated sugar

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon of almond extract

2 cups of heavy cream

(Optional) I added a couple drops of yellow food coloring and it made a perfect sunshine color! Also, I shaved lemon zest on the top of each cupcake.

Combine the cream cheese, sugar, vanilla extract and almond extract in a large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer. Fit the mixer with the whisk attachment and mix on medium speed until smooth. While the mixture is still whipping, slowly pour in the heavy cream. Stop and scrape the bottom of the bowl a couple of times while you continue whipping until the cream can hold a stiff peak.

If anyone decides to make these please tell me all about it!! What is everyone's absolute favorite cupcake? I would say mine had to be a dense, moist red velvet with thick cream cheese icing. YUM! I think the best one I ever had was at CUPCAKE in Charleston, SC. If you are ever in Charleston and have the urge to have an amazing cupcake and a cup of coffee, you should definitely stop in. Here's a picture of their red velvet cupcake so you can be tormented like me! You're welcome!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Carolina Dreamin' (part two)

Okay so here is outrageous dream number two. Own and operate a cupcake bakery. When I came up with this idea I had never made homemade cupcakes in my life. Come to think of it, I don't think I had ever baked ANYTHING from scratch. Oh...I made chicken and dumplings one time. It may have been the nastiest stuff on the face of the earth. My husband said it was fine as long as he added half of a bottle of salt to it. Hahaha!! Anyway, my cupcake bakery will only serve delicious homemade cupcakes made with the freshest ingredients! Since I am borderline obsessed with cupcakes, I figured I could certainly learn to make them right?! So far I have made 3 batches of homemade cupcakes. The first and second batches turned out amazing but the third was a bit dry. I fully intend to make every cupcake recipe imagineable and come up with my very own signature recipes. It is so exciting and I can't tell you how fun it is to be in the kitchen making cupcakes from scratch even if I make a huge mess and end up eating and spilling more of the batter than I should. I will also tell you that I am currently trying to lose 10 pounds. Having yummy cupcakes on my mind and in my house does NOT make it very easy!

Lately I have been trying to think of other reasons to make cupcakes since opening a cupcake bakery isn't really feasible right now. I have been making them for birthdays and parties but how about charities? I would love to start a charity of some sort "Cupcakes for ______" I don't cancer? homeless? I haven't decided yet. I swear my mind just comes up with so many things and I only follow through with about ohhhh 10% of them. I guess you could call me a dreamer. For now, I will just enjoy making unique delicious cupcakes and see where it goes. Check out my next post for my very first batch of cupcakes!!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Carolina Dreamin' (part one)

You know that one dream you have...the one where you are almost embarrassed to say it outloud because it's so farfetched? Something you have always wanted to do but don't know where you would even start? Well I have two. Okay I have way more than two...but I only have two that I'm willing to say outloud...or should I say type outloud. Anyway, the first one is to own and run a Bed and Breakfast. A big old beautiful plantation house on acres of green grass (think Forrest Gump here) decorated in shabby chic. I would cook great big southern meals (I'd certainly have to work on my cooking skills) and maybe even have my own little salon inside. Okay maybe not a salon...I'm getting a little carried away. So here's the house...I haven't figured out how to purchase it yet...I don't even know where it's located but it's perfect.

Now on to one of the bedrooms.

And the kitchen...

See I've got it all planned out. I have not yet come across the chance to purchase such a house...but when I do, you can bet your booty I'll be movin' in! What are some of y'alls fantastic, currently unattainable dreams? I'd love to hear about them!