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Friday, April 29, 2016

Beauty on the Go

Here are more fabulous tips from the French Beauty Solution. These are tips that author Mathilde Thomas follows while she is traveling.They are really informative.

* Moisturize your face as well as your entire body before getting on the plane. Really slather it on. In fact, you can use a thin layer of a moisturizing mask instead of your regular cream and keep it on during your entire flight. Don't forget your lips and hands- use a thick cream on your hands and reapply often.

* Once you get to your seat, change the time on your watch to the time at your destination as you board your flight. This mental trick helps you adjust and minimizes jet lag. 

* I never leave home without my earplugs and sleeping mask.

* Try not to eat while flying, if possible. I know this is tough, especially if you have a long flight, but airplane food tens to be very unhealthy, and is often overlooked with sodium and other preservatives that can cause you to store water and become very bloated. (Not to mention that excessive sodium levels are terrible for heart health, as they raise your blood pressure.) If your flight is very long and you know you'll get hungry, bring food such as apples and bananas, if possible, as they are satiating and easy to digest. 

* Drink plenty of water. Then drink more! As much as I try to avoid bottled water, this is the one time where bringing a large bottle with me is a must. Stay away from anything carbonated, as it can leave you extra-bloated. 

* One glass of red wine at most. I know it is fare more potent at altitude and extremely dehydrating. Still, I love my nightly glass of red wine, so I have one small glass, especially if it's a night flight, as it helps me sleep. 

These are some great tips and can help you enjoy your flight!

(photos via Pinterest)

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Gardenia and Rain

A few weeks ago I went into Bath and Body Works and smelled a candle called White Gardenia. I love it! I am addicted to floral scents and this hit the spot for me! I miss the scent called "Flower Shop" that they had last summer but this is wonderful too!

So that got me thinking that a body care line. I emailed their customer service team and they said that they would share my comment about this. Well, I few weeks later I was walking by and saw their new body care line called Gardenia and Rain.

I am not saying that they took my idea into consideration but I was very pleased to see that they were already working on it and that my wish was honored! I always purchase the body cream just to see how it "wears" on me. I do love it!

It has a very light floral scent to it. You won't smell like a walking taffy bar! I hate that! I am not in high school anymore so I have no desire to smell like candy. I believe that most of their scents cater to the younger ladies so this was nice change. 

Another item that I love is the Rainforest Gardenia. It smells wonderful! Every time I burn my candle I can smell it all over the house! So fragrant!!! I would encourage any one to go and try out these scents if you love florals. 

(photos via Google and Mrs. Shockley)

Monday, April 25, 2016

Shoes I love at Sole Society

Finding great shoes continues to be such a chore but this website has made it a little easier finding them!

Sole Society is absolutely fantastic! They offer a great selection. If you like the high pumps, they have those or if you are like me and love a great kitten heel they offer that too!

Here are a couple of my favorites....

I love this shoe and had been stalking it for a while! It went on sale and I ordered it!
Yeah me!

I love all these finds! If you want to see their selection for spring see here. 

(all photos via Sole

Friday, April 22, 2016

Rigatoni and Cauliflower Recipe

I tried another beautiful recipe about two weeks ago. It is called Rigatoni and Cauliflower al Forno and it was a hit at my house!

My step~son ate the leftovers during the weekend! Fantastic right?

Well if you want to give it a try the recipe is below. It is quite simple. Enjoy!

My dish at home


  • 1 pound rigatoni or other large pasta shape
  • 1 medium cauliflower, about 1 1/2 pounds
  •  Extra-virgin olive oil
  •  Salt and pepper
  • 1 tablespoon capers, roughly chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, or more to taste
  • 3 tablespoons roughly choppedsage, plus a few sage leaves left whole
  • ½ teaspoon lemon zest
  • 6 ounces coarsely grated fontina or mozzarella
  • 2 ounces finely grated Romano cheese or other hard pecorino
  • ½ cup coarse dry bread crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons chopped flat-leafparsley, for garnish


Cook the rigatoni in well-salted water according to package directions, but drain while still quite al dente. (If directions call for 12 minutes cooking, cook for 10 instead.) Rinse pasta with cool water, then drain again and set aside.

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Cut cauliflower in half from top to bottom. Cut out tough core and stem any extraneous leaves. Lay cauliflower flat side down and cut crosswise into rough 1/4-inch slices. Break into smaller pieces.

Put 3 tablespoons olive oil in a wide skillet over high heat. Add cauliflower slices, along with any crumbly pieces, in one layer. (Work in batches if necessary.) Let cauliflower brown and caramelize for about 2 minutes, then turn pieces over to brown the other side. Cook for another 2 minutes, or until the cauliflower is easily pierced with a fork. It’s fine if some pieces don’t brown evenly. Season generously with salt and pepper. Add capers, garlic, red pepper flakes, chopped sage, sage leaves and lemon zest and stir to coat.

Put cooked cauliflower mixture in a large mixing bowl. Add cooked rigatoni and fontina and toss. Transfer mixture to a lightly oiled baking dish. Top with Romano cheese, then with bread crumbs and drizzle with about 1 tablespoon olive oil. (Dish may be completed to this point up to several hours in advance and kept at room temperature, covered.)

Bake, uncovered, for about 20 minutes, until top is crisp and golden. Sprinkle with freshly chopped parsley before serving.

see original recipe here.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

A French Beauty Secret ~ 2

I am finishing up the last few chapters in The French Beauty Solution and it has been a wonderful book! I have been sharing different tips and educational information from this book for the last several months.

This is a fabulous tip that I read a few weeks ago that I wanted to share.

Take a tip from chic Parisians and spray a cotton handkerchief with your favorite fragrance and keep it in your handbag. Everything will smell divine each time you open your bag. You can also place a scented handkerchief inside your leather gloves to scent them as well. And take another tip from Marilyn Monroe, who famously kept her Chanel No. 5 in the fridge in The Seven Year Itch. Perfume should never be stored in the bathroom or on a shelf near a window, as heat and humidity affect the potency of the scent. ~ Mathilde Thomas 

What a fabulous tip! To read more about this book check out my other blog posts here and here.

My Kate Spade tote, see here if you are interested. I sprayed my Valentino handkerchief with my bottle of Philosophy Amazing Grace. Wonderful!

(photo Mrs. Shockley)

Monday, April 18, 2016

~Updating My Lamps

Lamps can be a great way to bring in more color, style and elegance. I follow Heather Clawson of Habitually Chic and I saw her white base lamp with the black shade and I just loved it!

So I took notice and some tips and decided to update my lamp shades with a chic black. 

This is my lamp in my sitting room. I love it! This is the before and after.

I love this black and white lamp shade that I found at a store called At Home.

I found this lamp there also. It has a creamy color to it and matched it 
up with this bell shaped black lamp shade. Maginifque!

And I had this white lamp base for some years now and added this 
black lamp shade last year. It looks great!

I hope this inspires you to take a second look at black lamp shades!

(photos via Google and Mrs. Shockley)

Friday, April 15, 2016

Apple & Pear Crisp

This is the second recipe that I tried from the "It's Friday Night Again" episode from the Barefoot Contessa.

This was absolutely delicious!!! My step-son's really enjoyed it. It was so simple and quick. Enjoy!!


2 pounds ripe Bosc pears (4 pears)

2 pounds firm Macoun apples (6 apples)

1 teaspoon grated orange zest

1 teaspoon grated lemon zest

2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice

2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon ground cinnam

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
For the topping:

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

3/4 cup granulated sugar

3/4 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 cup old-fashioned oatmeal

1/2 pound (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, diced


Peel, core, and cut the pears and apples into large chunks. Place the fruit in a large bowl and add the zests, juices, sugar, flour, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Pour into a 9 by 12 by 2-inch oval baking dish.

For the topping:
Combine the flour, sugars, salt, oatmeal, and butter in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on low speed for 1 minute, until the mixture is in large crumbles. Sprinkle evenly over the fruit, covering the fruit completely.

Place the baking dish on a sheet pan and bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, until the top is brown and the fruit is bubbly. Serve warm.

Recipe from the Food Network, see here.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Jo Malone London Herb Garden Collection

Have you heard about the new Herb Garden Collection at Jo Malone? Oh gosh, I saw it in one of the magazines I was reading. It looks absolutely wonderful! Just the bottles alone are a work of art.

Master perfumer Anne Flipo was the inspiration behind this beautiful collection.

So inspiring isn't it?

When interviewed by Celine; Anne said:

Anne: Our approach was multi-dimensional at first. We talked about colour and sound; 
the time of day in the herb garden, the light, even how the names of each herb sounded. It was 
a very inspiring, very unusual way to work and one that spoke to all the senses. 

For inspiration, Jo Malone London took me to visit a traditional herb garden where we were intrigued by the way the herbs were planted to interweave with one another. We wanted to reflect the 
diversity of the herbs, their natural playfulness and their different characters. The time we spend there also brought home qualities that are quite specific to the British garden: they are polished but still a little bit unruly. Refined yet relaxed. This duality seemed like a very British trait to me and I wanted to express it in the collection. 

I for one can't wait to smell this collection. I am really interested in the Lavender and Coriander and the Wild Strawberry & Parsley.

Beautiful bottles aren't they? I hope this inspires you to check out the collection.

(all photos via Google; interview information via Jo
(read original interview here)

Monday, April 11, 2016

My Spring Favorites ~ 2016

So spring has begun pretty early here in Indiana. My lilies, lilac bushes, and lark spur are starting to make appearances. So with that being said I am so inspired to began some spring shopping!

I have been seeing sale after sale! Keeping the flesh under control has been really hard but when I find classic pieces on sale, I just go for it! I have stopped at a few stores and these are the items that I have already purchased for spring.....

These pave and pearl earrings were on sale at Talbots for $20!

I love this Knit Bardot dress that I found at Target last month!
It is so comfortable and chic!

My Coach peep toe heels. I am wearing them in the picture above.
They are so comfortable and classic!

I love bug brooches and have been looking for one for sometime now.
Banana Republic just starting selling these recently! Joy!

I am also wearing this in the second photo. 

I also picked up these gorgeous pink blush Ninewest heels from Ebay this past week.

Be inspired to begin your chic spring list!

(all photos via Mrs. Shockley)

Friday, April 8, 2016

Chicken Piccata

I love trying new recipes! It is a great way to learn about new ingredients, how to cut vegetables or fruits, you learn about certain cuts of meats and herbs. I watch a LOT of Youtube videos. I follow this channel called "BarefootButterNHeavyCream" and they post nothing but the Barefoot Contessa cooking shows!

The most recent episode that I watched was the one called "It's Friday Night Again" and in this episode Jeffrey was on his way home and Ina had this wonderful meal prepared. This dish in particular was called the Chicken Piccata and it looked delish!

I had to try it. The recipe is below and it was super easy. Enjoy!!

My chicken piccata


2 split (1 whole) boneless, skinless chicken breasts

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1 extra-large egg

1/2 tablespoon water

3/4 cup seasoned dry bread crumbs

Good olive oil

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature, divided

1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (2 lemons), lemon halves reserved

1/2 cup dry white wine

Sliced lemon, for serving

Chopped fresh parsley leaves, for serving

Here is the video from the show

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.

Place each chicken breast between 2 sheets of parchment paper or plastic wrap and pound out to 1/4-inch thick. Sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper.

Mix the flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper in a shallow plate. In a second plate, beat the egg and 1/2 tablespoon of water together. Place the bread crumbs on a third plate. Dip each chicken breast first in the flour, shake off the excess, and then dip in the egg and bread crumb mixtures.

Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large saute pan over medium to medium-low heat. Add the chicken breasts and cook for 2 minutes on each side, until browned. Place them on the sheet pan and allow them to bake for 5 to 10 minutes while you make the sauce.

For the sauce, wipe out the saute pan with a dry paper towel. Over medium heat, melt 1 tablespoon of the butter and then add the lemon juice, wine, the reserved lemon halves, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Boil over high heat until reduced in half, about 2 minutes. Off the heat, add the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and swirl to combine. Discard the lemon halves and serve 1 chicken breast on each plate. Spoon on the sauce and serve with a slice of lemon and a sprinkling of fresh parsley.

Recipe via the Food Network, see here.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Spring Dinnerware 2 ~ Kate Spade Floral Dinnerware

Oh my goodness! I did not know that Kate Spade had all these wonderful floral dinnerware sets! Once I found the Birchway dinnerware set, I stumbled on these two sets also. They are both just fabulous!

This is the Patio Floral Dinnerware collection:

This is the Rose Park Dinnerware set:

The entire collection is here.

And there is one more item that I think I am going to order very soon and it is the Kate Spade Floral thank you cards.

Wonderful aren't they? 

I hope these items inspire you.

(all photos via Google)

Monday, April 4, 2016

Spring Dinnerware 1~ Kate Spade Birchway Dinnerware

Spring is finally arriving and I have been bitten by the floral bug! Honestly, I just love flowers and always want them around. I was reading the Traditional Home magazine recently and saw this beautiful dinnerware set from Kate Spade.

It is called the Kate Spade Birchway Dinnerware set and it is absolutely lovely.

I think it is very simple yet elegant. I would love to add the dinner plates as a part of my dinnerware collection. I will keep my eyes peeled at Marcy's!

(all photos via Google)

Friday, April 1, 2016

Being Elegant at "Reading" People

It is so hard sometimes dealing with liars, trouble makers and down right rude people. I pray constantly for discernment and I am pretty good at "reading" people. There are some situations that I will not put myself into because I can tell if someone is not going to like me.

And that is okay. Not everyone is going to like me. But we must learn how to deal with these individuals. I was reading an article from Real called "5 Tricks to Reading People".
This article gave wonderful hints on what to pay attention to and how to deal with it.

Take Them Out to Dinner.

As a waiter, I always watch to see if, and how, customers’ demeanors change when they talk to me as opposed to the person they’re eating with. If they’re engaged and personable with the people at the table but then don’t look me in the eye or say “please” and “thank you,” I think that reveals a lot. I’ve heard of people taking job candidates to restaurants to see how they interact with the servers, because it’s a good indicator of how they will treat their coworkers. It’s also telling for me to see how people react to bad news. When I say we’re out of a dish or the food is going to take longer than normal, do they let it roll off their backs? Or do they ask how that could possibly happen and say it’s unacceptable? In most cases—in restaurants and in life—there is a reasonable explanation. When people get upset, it tells me that they sweat the small stuff.
—Darron Cardosa is a blogger and the author of The Bitchy Waiter. He lives in New York City.

Watch for “Actually.…”

There are telltale words that show a person is the type who likes to bait you into an argument—
especially online. If someone starts a comment with “Actually,” he is trying to correct you. 
Or ending a comment with “Right?” He wants you to engage. 
Another common indicator is chiming in with an anecdote to shut you down. 
For example, you write, “X percent of baby boys don’t get this vaccine.” 
And he writes, “My brother got that. You’re wrong.” OK, you have a personal story that 
you think negates all other information. What I tell people, especially female writers I work with,
is that when a person comes back more than once with an “actually” or a “Right?” 
or an anecdote, that person is trying to cause trouble.

—Annemarie Dooling is the head of growth and audience correspondence at
a news website. She lives in New York City.

Have Them Tell a Story Twice.

With all of our electronic communication these days—and even more so with dating apps—
everyone has the chance to fabricate. Maybe they tell one person one thing and another person 
something else, just to get what they want out of situations. I’m newly single for the first time 
in seven years, and one of the things I look for is consistency when someone tells me a story. 
I’ll say, “Hey, remember that story you told me? What happened at the end?” 
Getting the same response—or not—says something about his honesty.
—Jessie Kay is the founder of the Real Matchmaker. She lives in Los Angeles.

Listen for a Straight Answer.

How directly someone speaks to you can be a big indicator of how forthright she is overall. 
This is something we look for when we’re working with witnesses but also when we’re looking 
at jurors. When someone immediately answers the question, we usually feel she is being honest with us. 
When someone talks and talks in a roundabout way, giving 15 explanations for what she’s about to say, 
and then gives you the answer at the very end, she might be telling the truth, or she might be wrestling with it. 
It hurts your credibility if you’re not immediately direct.
—Leslie Ellis, Ph.D., is a jury consultant at DecisionQuest, a national litigation consulting firm. 
She lives in Washington, D.C.

Ask if They’ve Broken a Bone.

This is strictly observational; there’s no data out there on this. But I have seven children, and 
I’ve noticed a definite bimodal distribution when it comes to broken bones. 
Three of them have had multiple broken bones—arms, shoulders, whatever. 
Four of them have never broken a bone. The ones that break bones tend to be more 
aggressive and daring. They’re also risk-takers, which can be a good thing. 
The others are more cautious and deliberate. It’s the same with my grandchildren.
 I have one who will jump off a couch and assume Grandpa will catch her. 
Her brother will climb up and down the stairs of the slide until he finally goes down slowly.
—Stephen Camarata, Ph.D., is the author of The Intuitive Parent and a professor of hearing 
and speech sciences and psychiatry at the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine. 
He lives in Nashville.

(photos via Pinterest)
(original article see here)