Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Style files :: Liquid leggings.

[Blouse :: similar | Scarf :: similar | Leggings :: Windsor | Shoes :: Jeffrey Campbell Ibiza]

Shopping the closet is serious around here!  I've had these liquid leggings for at least a year now and just wore them for the first time last week.  This is the perfect long, loose shirt to wear with them too (because admittedly, they are very liquid and tight).  I'm trying to find other ways to pair these, so I can break them out more!

I actually wore this outfit last week to meet up with Justyn!  I'm thrilled to have finally found an awesome blogger who actually lives near me!

pleated poppy

Monday, February 25, 2013

currently | v2.

Reading.  Treasure Island.

I've finished my other reads of 2013 and am slowly working on this classic.  It's a little tough for me to read the classics with their "different" language.  I'm hoping to move on to Little Women if I ever finish this one.

Watching.  Girls.

I can not even get enough of Girls.  I re-watched the first season already and anxiously anticipate every new episode.  It is most definitely my favorite episode on TV right now!

Thinking.  About family.

It's funny sometimes...how one part of your life can be going so well and another seemingly crumbling around you.  My family situation (aside from D and I) has been a bit of a mess for about a year and a half now.  Things have taken a turn for the worse, and it's really hard to live far away and be helpless.

Eating/drinking.  Sweets & stouts.

In March, I'm planning to do another Whole 30 because sugar and dairy has made too big of a reappearance in my life.  Those donuts were what I was craving after my 10k on Saturday.  And of course you know all about my recent stout addiction.

Working.  On running.

I ran a 6 minute PR on my most recent 10k.  I've been focusing on running outside only (bye, bye treadmill) and building my hill training and endurance.  It feels really good to finally be getting faster!

Wishing.  For a spring break.

With my new job, I don't really get weeks off or summer breaks.  I'll take the switch for a job I love, but I can't say I wouldn't love a week off to do nothing.

Obsessing.  The new tattoo.

It's yet to happen yet but hopefully next month...

Hating.  Buying a new washer and dryer.

The purchase you love to hate.  You love the upgrade of having a new(er) & nicer washer and dryer.  You hate the money you have to put on that shit.  Another reason to hate it...they continually mess our stuff up. Long story, but it's pretty fucked up.  But two deliveries, one repairman, and two visits to the store later, we still don't have a dryer that properly works.

Loving.  Shopping my closet.

It's been so fun coming up with outfits lately.  I have another fun one coming this week!

Friday, February 22, 2013

Food & Beer Friday :: For the chocolate lover.

I promise I'm taking a step back from stouts after this (I already have my next beer waiting!), but there was no way I could resist talking about the amazingness that is this beer.  You're probably most familiar with Samuel Smith's Oatmeal Stout, but the organic Chocolate Stout blows it out of the water.

I was sold before even tasting this beer.  The aroma is amazing; it smells like pure chocolate.  This stout is chocolatey, creamy, and absolutely delicious.  The best part?  It's only 5% alcohol!  I could drink these all night long.

Samuel Smith recommends pairing this beer with complimentary chocolates, such as white, milk, and dark.  Of course the chocolate cake with white chocolate mousse, beignets with espresso cream, and panna cotta were the perfect additions at our Valentine's Day dinner.  I did not want this beer to end, and I can not wait to get my hands on another pack of it!


Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Sunday beer brunching.

You know how I mentioned that we went to a beer brunch recently?  It's just as amazing as it sounds.  Instead of the standard "beer dinner" you might attend, this is a brunch where dishes are paired with beers.  We went to the Raleigh Times 1st Annual Beer Brunch last year, and it was delicious and brutal.  They paired everything with breakfast-type stout beers which were high in alcohol.  The portions were massive.  I left feeling insanely full and a little too tipsy.

[You might recognize this outfit!]

This year, Raleigh Times got things right!

This line-up is pretty stellar, and the chef is pretty dang awesome!  Oh, and even though I'm vegetarian pescatarian flexitarian pescatarian, one of my personal exceptions for eating meat is beer dinners/brunches (which is a story for another day).

First course was a pancake topped with sausage (which I learned I really don't miss unless it's the spicy variety), molasses, and honey.  It was paired with the Mother Earth Tripel Over Head beer.  This is a great beer for those of you who enjoy beers of the lighter variety.  The sweetness, which isn't overpowering, has the amazing ability to hide the 9% alcohol that could quickly catch up to you.  This beer and pairing was pretty yummy.  It was a nice, light start to a brunch.

The second course was probably my favorite.  The frittata had duck confit (which I've had only a handful of times and has been amazing every time), mushrooms, and asparagus in it.  The green chili hollandaise was really where it was at though.  Everyone wanted bowls of that shit to go (apparently they don't do that).  The beer pairing was like the cherry on top for this course.  Stone Vertical Epic is a cool beer with an even better story.  Stone brewed one batch of this beer every year starting on 01.01.01.  They have continued with one batch every year as so: 02.02.02, 03.03.03...you get the idea.  These beers cost ridiculous amounts of money if you tried to get a hold of them now.  We were lucky enough to have the 11.11.11 version.  Perfection.

[No idea why Blogger decided to rotate this picture on its own]

This course was good!  The sorbet was delicious and a great palate cleanser; then there's the mimosa.  The Cascade Apricot was absolutely perfect for mixing with juice to make a mimosa.  I wouldn't recommend this beer alone unless you like sour beers.  I could drink that mimosa all day long.

Surprise!  The bloody mary wasn't on the menu!  That on the left is candied bacon.  The bloody went down oh, so smooth...

This course was a bit of a fail for me.  Remember how I mentioned portion-size was a problem?  This was a major problem.  And as a regular "non-meat eater," I just couldn't handle this one.  I took a few bites max and gave the rest to D.  The Mother Earth Silent Night on the other hand was amazing.  The pairing of the beer and food was really delicious, but I the meat just didn't work for me personally.

I wish the dessert would have focused a bit more, but let's face it, the photographer was not quite taking pictures at her prime at this point.  The chocolate mousse was really delicious, and you know I'm a fan of the Terrapin Liquid Bliss beer pairing.  The peanut brittle was super sweet for me, but I wish I could have eaten more of it.  

How did we leave after this year's beer brunch?  Luckily I could still walk in my heels, but we came home and crashed.  A little drunk and a lot full makes for a great nap.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Style files :: A little date night outfit.

[Blouse :: Similar | Tank :: Similar | Jeans :: Old Navy Rockstar Skinnies | Purse :: Kate Spade Minka | Shoes :: Jeffrey Campbell-Ibiza]  

I actually wore this outfit on two occasions recently.  You might recall this shirt from what feels like ages ago in California!  Crazily, that is the one time I've worn this shirt!  After last month's closet clean-out, I vowed to shop my own closet more and wear things I kept but hadn't worn much.    

On Valentine's Day, I had a handsome date with this guy.  We started with a drink of Sexual Chocolate at Tasty Beverage.  Then we headed over to the Busy Bee and ate the delicious menu above (stay tuned for a special Food & Beer Friday involving one of those dishes!).  My favorite dish was the roasted mushroom & fontina ravioli!  Between a lot of talking, drinking, (and even a few tears), it was a pretty great night.    
Linked up!
pleated poppy

Monday, February 18, 2013

Life Lately.

D has been out of town a lot recently, and I've been spending a lot of time at my desk.  I'm making efforts to get out and do things more though.  February has certainly treated me kindly so far.

 [I've been digging mixed drinks lately.  Gin + tonic + lime.  Yes.]

 [Finished reading The Fault in Our Stars with a little cookie in a mug.]

 [Week 5 of half marathon training is completed!]

 [A delicious beer brunch which deserves a full post for another day.]

 [Sending out my first card from Row House 14!]

 [Girl Scout cookies being eaten from least to greatest.]

 [Beer tasting + taco night with great friends (and yes, that's homemade guac!)]

 [Beautiful Raleigh sky on Valentine's Day.]

 [After Friday was 60+ degrees, it snowed Saturday and we spent a lazy day doing nothing.]

 [Snow days call for mulled wine...]

[...and Scrabble + beer of course.]

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Style files :: Mixed prints.

[Glasses :: Warby Parker Zagg]

[Blazer :: similar | Polka Dot Chambray :: similar | Cords :: similar | Flats :: similar]

What do you wear for an opening of an art show when you have the work with 3 year olds all day?  This cute but casual outfit!  I've had this blazer for a few years now, and it's one of my favorite layering pieces.  I love to throw it over a t-shirt dress in warmer months.  While my indoor pictures don't do the outfit justice, I'm in love with these army green cords.  You may totally be seeing me carry my cords into spring!

Also proof that you can come up with a pretty sweet outfit when you shop your own closet.  I've had most of these pieces for years now!

Friday, February 8, 2013

Food & Beer Friday :: Additional ingredient? Licorice.

I hope you're not surprised to see another stout.  I just can't help myself.  Regardless of the 60 degree days we've been having around here, I love curling up with a stout to end my work day.  Unfortunately, these temps seem like they're going to be around for a bit (or at least the next 10 days), so maybe I'll break out a lighter porter next week?  Just don't get your hopes up...

As for Bell's Kalamazoo Stout, do you see many 6% stouts?   While it's supposed to be brewed with chocolate and coffee, those flavors didn't come through much.  In my opinion, that's a good thing for this beer!  It's nice to have a stout that isn't overly medicated with a particular flavor.  It was light(er) considering it was a stout.  Don't be scared off by the licorice!  It certainly didn't taste like that scary black licorice (or black jelly beans...bleh) that haunts me to this day.  Apparently the brewer's licorice Bell's uses is gelatin-free which makes it ok for vegetarians!  Boo yah!

Bell's has a pretty good line-up of beers; however I am preferable to their seasonal varieties (ever heard of the much anticipated HopSlam?).  I would venture to guess that one of their most well known beers is their year-round Two Hearted Ale, which is pretty delicious.  Nonetheless, if you can get your hands on this stout, give it a try!  It won't knock your socks off, but I'd say it's a pretty good choice for a stout in 50 degree weather...



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