Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Dreaming of Safari



So I'm a bit of a princess. You know, I go camping if it's in a hotel, preferably one with a spa. If I’m on the beach, there’s someone giving me diet cokes, preferably with a lime in it. So if I’m going to go to a safari. . . .

Then it should be the Lilly Pulitzer Spring Safari!

This fabulous event will be held on April 15, 2010 at the American Museum of Natural History. I imagine that quite a few “wild party animals” will be in attendance at the event and I’d sure love to join this Safari. The evening begins with dinner and continues with dessert and dancing! To celebrate the endangered animal collection, some of Lilly’s print designers will work on a mural during the event. How exciting it would be to watch them work! They’ll probably get a lot of inspiration from the impressive museum collections as well as the party guests themselves.

Some of my favorite Lilly prints involve silly anthropomorphic scenes, such as monkeys hanging from chandeliers, monkey gondoliers, monkeys with margaritas. . . You get the idea.


Maybe the party guests are the inspiration!

The event is black tie “Lilly or Louder.” What a fun splash of color this event will bring to the museum. I’m visualizing my closet to think about what I would wear to this event. It has to be FUN! It would be fun to plan an outfit for this event.


You have the opportunity to attend this event. Enter to win one of two gala prizes. The first prize is called Night at the Museum. The second opportunity is Want to Work in Fashion. I’ve entered to win and am keeping my fingers quadruple crossed at the thought of such a fantastic opportunity.


For those who cannot attend this event, there will be live video from the event on the Lilly Pulitzer website and facebook page! So much fun.


xoxo

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Mad for Madras

First, I want to thank all of you wonderful readers for your kind and thoughtful comments on yesterday's post. It really means so much to me. Even though this happened years ago, it feels just like yesterday when I read my words. A weight has truly been lifted and I thank you for joining me in this healing experience.

Today's post is much lighter. . . Two types of fabric make me think about summer. . . madras and seersucker. Here's some madras eye candy for your today.

Madras flip flops from Vineyard Vines are a perfect addition for any preppy beach bag.



Aren't these children's shoes adorable? You can find them in the Garnet Hill catalog.



L.L. Bean Signature plaid tunic I like the new signature line and am thrilled to be able to purchase it at Tysons Corner in Virginia. There's something about trying things on in person that is so wonderful.



This adorable pink madras tote bag from L.L. Bean is less than $20!


If you want your drink to match your clothes, then you should have a Madras. A madras is made with vodka and cranberry juice with a splash of orange. If you don't stir the drink completely, it will look like madras. Garnish with a slice of lime. Here's a recipe for a Mexican Madras. It's much less common, which makes it all the more fun! I used this drink as a signature drink at a party I hosted and the guests LOVED it.



I've had this Tipsy in Madras book for a while and was shocked to discover it on amazon.com for over $60 now that it is out of print. It used to be one of my standard presents for friends. I probably gave more than twenty of these books as gifts!



Plaid is my favorite color; after pink and green, of course! Have a happy Tuesday.

xoxo


P.S. Yesterday the minnies were delighted to receive their own mail! Trish at Pink Preppy Lilly Lover thoughtfully sent some pink and green spring cheer to the girls. Natalia literally squealed with delight when she saw the pretty address label with her name on it. Thank you, Trish, for being so sweet! xoxo

Monday, March 29, 2010

Catharsis ~ Part 1

Some posts from Jessica have given me the courage to share some difficult stories with you. There are two instances in particular that stand out in my mind as life changing. While both were terrible experiences, I learned something important from both of them, even if it took me a while to get to that point.

I debated sharing this story with you. It is something that very few people know about me. It was something that I avoided discussing for some time because I felt like it might reveal some kind of flaw in myself or my own judgment. However, the more that time passes, the more I realize that there is no way that I could have predicted or prevented the series of events. . .

Prequel
D and I were so happy together. He and I had known each other for the better part of our lives and had shared so many things together. He had proposed with a beautiful ring and a poem about strings. . . the strings attached to his heart. It was all very romantic. I was also honored to wear his grandmother's engagement ring. There were two engagement rings from D on my finger. We were happy to share the news with our families, friends, neighbors, and co-workers.
We had just found the most adorable house in Roland Park and planned to write an offer for it. Things were looking bright for our future together.

Tuesday
D and I had a fantastic time at our ballroom dance class. I kept thinking to myself how good we are getting at the waltz and that we truly moved so well as a couple. I'm envisioning us being the envy of all of the other couples at charity events. . .

Thursday
D is sick. He told me that he is feeling so badly that he isn't going in to work. He does not sound terrible, but I noticed something strange in his voice. I sent him lots of well wishes and was close to taking chicken soup to his house.

Friday
I couldn't get in touch with D all day. His phone went straight to voice mail and no one answered at home or work. I was hoping that he was resting at home and getting over what ever little stomach bug had caught him. Little did I know what had really "caught him."

A friend, J, and I talked about plans for the evening and I mentioned to her that I couldn't get in touch with D. I asked if she would try to locate him since her boyfriend lived just around the corner from D and that if she could and he was feeling up to it, that we could do something later that evening.

J did make contact with D. The conversation went a little bit like this. . .

J: Hi D, what are you doing?
D: I'm at the Mt. Washington Tavern with my WIFE.
J: C'mon D, don't be silly! What are you doing? Do you and Bethany want to do something later?
D: No, seriously, J, I'm with my wife.
J: Oh, with Bethany?
D: No.


Two minutes later J gets a text message from D with the hand of a female wearing a ring.

He really was with his wife, and it wasn't me.

I couldn't believe it, but the hand and ring didn't lie. D's mother and I got along and I was in such disbelief that I called her. Probably not my finest moment, but I attribute my actions to being in shock. Talk about shock. . . His mother had no idea that her only son was now married to the woman she had described with colorful language. She told me that it had to be a mistake and that she would get to the bottom of it. Ten minutes later, we spoke again and she confirmed what I already knew was true. He had gotten married to another woman at 3:50 p.m. at the Baltimore County Courthouse without the knowledge of his parents, closest friends, and, oh that's right, his fiancee.

It was something out of a book or movie. These things never happen in real life. It was one of the rainiest nights I can remember. One of the most vivid images from that night is the rain streaming down the windows. I just sat by the windows and watched the rain; in disbelief about what had just happened.

I cried. A lot. I kept replaying the events in my mind and wondered what had happened. I doubted myself.

A week later, I went to return his grandmother's ring to her in person. We both cried. She is a lovely woman and I truly miss her and his entire family. It was a real sense of loss for me. His mother and I still exchange Christmas cards and I think of his family often.

But as a friend told me, I "dodged a bullet."

Once I asked a friend Holly if she thought that people could change and she sent me a quote from Maya Angelou. Later, my friend Sandy posted the same quote.

Maya Angelou: "The first time someone shows you who they are, believe them."

D showed me and his friends who he really was. He chose to get married in secret at a courthouse just before it closed. He chose to ignore my phone calls. He decided not to share whatever was happening in his life with me. Whatever the circumstances were, he showed a lack of character in his actions and behaved like a sneaky coward. I forgive D for what he did even though I don't understand it; but I cannot ever forget it.

Life constantly moves forward and it is important to learn through every life experience, no matter how easy or difficult it may be.

It feels good to write my story. It's a very healing, cleansing feeling.

From the Merriam-Webster Dictionary:
Main Entry: ca·thar·sis
Pronunciation: \kə-ˈthär-səs\
Function: noun
Inflected Form(s): plural ca·thar·ses \-ˌsēz\
Etymology: New Latin, from Greek katharsis, from kathairein to cleanse, purge, from katharos
Date: circa 1775
1 : purgation
2 a : purification or purgation of the emotions (as pity and fear) primarily through art b : a purification or purgation that brings about spiritual renewal or release from tension
3 : elimination of a complex by bringing it to consciousness and affording it expression


xoxo

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Palm Sunday Palmiers


It's Palm Sunday! Palm Sunday is always one of my favorite church services. Even as an adult, there's something fun about swinging around a palm frond during church. Admit it, you like it too! Of course, there's always the occasional incident with palm swatting, but everyone enjoys the service today. The minnies are singing with the youth choir today and are SO excited. Of course they wanted to wear their Easter dress, and I said no!

You can make some delicious cookies that look like palms to enjoy this afternoon. They are very easy to make and are so delicious.

The picture is taken from the book Dessert Circus

Palmiers are delicious and simple French cookies. In Mexico, they are often called Orejas (ears) or Palmeras (palm leaves) in bakeries. You don't have to go to a patisserie or a pasteleria to get this delicious cookie. The ingredients and recipe are so simple that you can make these at home.

Ingredients
2 cups granulated sugar
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
2 sheets puff pastry, defrosted (I used Pepperidge Farm)

Directions
1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
2. Combine the sugar and the kosher salt. Pour 1 cup sugar/salt mixture on a flat surface. I used a large cutting board as my surface.
3. Unfold the puff pastry onto the sugar and pour 1/2 of the sugar mixture on top, being sure to spread it evenly on the pastry.
4. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough until it is 13 x 13 inches square and the sugar is pressed into the puff pastry on the top and the bottom.
5. Next is folding. First fold the sides of the square towards the center so that they are halfway to the middle of the dough. Then fold again to meet at the exact center of the square. Then fold again like you were closing a book.
6. Slice the dough into 1/2 inch slices. Put the slices on baking sheets lined with parchment paper.
7. Continue this process until all of the sheets are used.
8. Bake for 6 minutes until caramelized and brown on the bottom, then turn and bake for another 3-5 minutes.
9. Cool on a baking rack.


There are many possibilities with folding. Some of these cookies can be made to look like elephant ears, some are folded like small, delicate fans, and others are like a fancy letter C. Have fun and be creative. It's like making a new treat every time you fold this.

There's something fun about playing with dough, don't you think? Kind of like playdoh or sand. . .

Enjoy your Palmiers.

Variation
A variation of the cookie is to dip the tips of the "ears" in melted chocolate. Place on wax paper until the chocolate has cooled.
Hope everyone has a fantastic Sunday.




PS: Be sure to follow me on Facebook! I'll post extra surprises on this page from time to time. A giveaway is coming soon!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Tea Accessories

It's always a treat to be able to share something near and dear to my heart with you. Today is one of those occasions. One of my dear friends, Marcela Camargo, has a shop on etsy that I just adore. Tea Accessories offers gorgeous necklaces, headbands, and accessories. I've known Marcela for about 15 years. She is smart, motivated, and I'm so impressed by her creativity. Originally from Mexico, Marcela has studied in the United States and the United Kingdom, and now resides in Michigan.

Marcela recently made these adorable shirts for the minnies. They kind of remind me of a shirt that crewcuts would offer in their collection. This shirt is so practical because the flowers snap on and off, making it easy to wash. She also has another variation of this shirt as a onesie for a baby! What an adorable baby gift.



This headband is one of my favorite things that Marcela has in her store right now. Feel free to message her for custom items.

Ivory Sailor Knot Headband: Perfect for a nautical inspired outfit.


Here's a funny story. When we were both MUCH younger, Marcela and I fit so many girls in my little tiny car and made our trek to the "good mall" in Northern Virginia, Tysons Corner. We bought so much on that day, being the good mini-shoppers, that between all of us and our bags, we hardly fit in the car on the way home. It was such a fun day and I have many happy memories of time spent with her.

You can also follow Marcela on her facebook page, Tea Accessories. She just went to Paris and told me that she was inspired by so many pieces that she saw there.

Happy Socialite Saturday, a phrase borrowed from my friend, Beth Dunn. It's been a very long week.

xoxo

Friday, March 26, 2010

Lilly Easter Eggs

This Easter, turn your decorations pink and green with Lilly paper goods. The paper products from Lilly Pulitzer are so pretty that I often find myself using them for other things. The wrapping paper makes a great book cover. The uses are endless.

I always incorporate Lilly into holidays, too. A pink tree at Christmas, pink is an obvious choice for Valentine's Day, and so on. During spring at our house, we always try to make a variety of Easter eggs. This week, I'm going to share a few of the different ideas that I like for Easter eggs.


These eggs are easy to make and can be used for many years. You'll need paper napkins, Mod Podge, and plastic eggs. I used about 3 leftover Lilly Pulitzer cocktail napkins that I had to make a dozen eggs. Since there were not enough napkins for a crowd, I figured that this was a good way to Re-Lilly! Cut or tear the napkins in to small pieces. Since the napkins were a patch print, I cut some of the parts of the patch in the squares or shapes they were in the print.

Dab a little Mod Podge on the plastic egg and then lightly press the napkin in place. Cover the napkin with more Mod Podge and continue until the egg is completely covered. The eggs dry easily in a holder from the egg dye kits from the supermarket.

Coat the egg one or two more times with Mod Podge to finish. Alternatively, you can spray them with clear acrylic, but I like the results better with Mod Podge.

This project is easy enough for little or big hands and is a perfect filler activity while dyeing other eggs.



P.S. Thank you to everyone who has written to me about my mother. It truly means so much to me. She is being transferred to a rehabilitation center today where she will be for a few months. She is in good spirits and is determined to do the physical therapy necessary to recover from this accident.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Pink of Perfection Pie

You know how much I enjoy cooking. I'm always looking for new or unique recipes and often find that older recipes and cookbooks have some of the best recipes. I recently came across a dessert that I'm so eager to try. The Pink-of-Perfection Pie was Good Housekeeping's dessert of the month in March 1965.

The fact that this pie is pink makes it even more delightful. It would be a perfect part of a pink party for a shower or birthday. There are a few shortcuts that may be helpful such as using a packaged pie crust (I like the Pillsbury refrigerated pie crusts in a pinch) and using whipped cream.




Here is the recipe copied from Good Housekeeping that I want to share with you.

1. Make, from favorite recipe, or label of packaged piecrust mix, 1 8-inch pie shell with high fluted edge; bake, then cool thoroughly.
2. Meanwhile, in double-boiler top, combine 4 1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatine and 1/3 cup granulated sugar; then add 4 egg yolks and beat slightly. Now stir in 1/2 cup creme de noyaux liqueur and 1/4 cup white creme de cacao; then cook, over boiling water, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens~ about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir until cool~ about 10 minutes. Then stir in a few drops of liquid red food color to tint it a deep pink.
3. In a large bowl beat 4 egg whites until frothy; then add 1/4 teaspoon salt and beat until soft peaks are formed. Now gradually beat in 1/4 cup granulated sugar.
4. Now whip 1 cup heavy or whipping cream until stiff; pour onto beaten egg whites; then gently pour on pink gelatine mixture; using rubber spatula, gently fold mixtures together. Refrigerate mixture 30 minutes or until mixture mounds when dropped from spoon. Then, using a rubber spatula, lightly pile gelatine mixture into the baked pie shell. Refrigerate again.
About 30 minutes before serving:
Whip 1/4 cup heavy or whipping cream and use in decorating bag, with decorating tube number 30 in place, to make design, as pictured. Regrigerate until it is time to serve, cut into 8 wedges, then garnish with fresh fruits.
~ Virginia V. Voboril


Looks delicious! Where do you find your favorite recipes? Do you enjoy looking at old magazines? In this issue of Good Housekeeping, there is a feature article about Jackie Kennedy and so much great fashion. Even the ads are interesting to me.
xoxo

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

1st Annual Spring Swap



A million thanks to Grove Gals who sent me these delightfully preppy goodies as part of the swap that Shopaholic in Alabama and I organized. The monogrammed market tote is perfect in my two favorite colors and will keep me in style at the Farmer's Market. The note cards are so cute and I love the post it notes and book plates. The minnies LOVE their stretchy headbands and already told me that they plan to wear them to ballet class. The hair band ball is perfect; in fact, I was just looking at those last week! Natalia has claimed the Dylan's Candy Bar lip gloss and Alexia added the Lilly keychain to her collection.

Thanks for your thoughtfulness! It's funny because there were several people who were not paired with partners, they were sending a gift to one person and receiving a gift from another. I contacted Grove Gals to find out her likes and favorite things and she went shopping for me ~ even though she was not supposed to buy for me. That makes these goodies extra special.

It's been a difficult week for me. My mother fell and broke her femur. She was and still is in quite a bit of pain. The surgery went well but the recovery process is going to be a long one. As of now, it looks like she will be in a rehabilitation center for about 6 weeks after she is released from the hospital. I would appreciate any prayers, good vibes, or thoughts and believe in the power of prayer. Please keep her in your thoughts.

Thanks to my new friend, Grove Gals, for making my difficult day a lot brighter.

xoxo

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Lilly summer sneak peek shhhhh!

Although I've only been wearing my new resort and spring Lilly for about a week, I'm already looking ahead for hints of the new summer line.

Janie from Lilly Pulitzer gave a hint about Summer 2010 on the Lilly Pulitzer blog after her trip to France. It's all about markets and buying local. I'm all set for the Farmer's market with my Market Tote in Creme Fraiche.


The minnies are getting their tote in Queen of Green for Easter and I was thrilled to learn that there will be other fun items available in this green print. There will be a minnies' shift, perfect for a science fair project presentation or other fun event. Earth Day anyone? Bags, shorts, and other items are also part of the summer collection in this cute print.


I had the unique opportunity to preview Summer 2010 at a trunk show and wanted to share some of my favorites with you. Every time a new collection is unveiled, I am amazed at the creativity, attention to detail, and sheer brilliance of it! Summer 2010 is no exception. Forgive my lack of pictures, but due to the sensitive nature of the secrets I'm about to reveal to you, I do not have pictures at this time. The good news is that the first Summer 2010 delivery will arrive in stores in early April; I think April 10th is the first delivery, so you don't have to wait for a long time. I hope that my descriptions will do justice to the lovely items.

My go-to dress for summer would be a delightful tank dress that is so easy to wear. The print is a blue and white nautical toile that is simply divine. The top half of the dress is a white stretchy, high-tech t-shirt type material with tank sleeves. The waist is cinched with a rope belt with gold embellishments at the ends. The bottom half is the blue and white toile and hits above the knee. So comfortable and so cool. This was sized alphabetically: small, medium, large, etc. This would work late into the season too when paired with a blue cardigan on cool breezy nights. It's the perfect dress to walk along the beach or to wear to a clam bake. I have so many visions in my mind for this dress.

On the other side of the spectrum, the Sandra dress is HOT. No one can deny that. This is the perfect dress to wear to a party, a night on the town, or whenever you want to make a splash. You'll love this one shouldered dress with three large ruffles. The ruffles are not as dynamic and fluffy as the Amber dress from a few years ago, but are more layered and long. The look is stunning as the ruffles continue up the shoulder. Sandra is short, but not scandalous in length. It's probably too short for church, in my humble opinion, but is perfect for a party. It comes in different colors although my favorite is the big and bold "Hotty Pink I Dahlia" print. You know what Lilly says, you should "Wear pink and make the boys wink!" This dress fits true to size.

Another fantastic dress is the Arden. Arden is a strapless dress with multiple rows of ruffles covering the dress from bodice to hem. Think Socialite Carmen Miranda without the stomach exposure. The "white off the hook" print is gorgeous with muted shades of blue and green fish. There is a bit of silver in the material too, which I really like, especially after a few seasons of primarily gold embellished prints and dresses. This will look great with silver McKims.


The Skinny McKim is a thong sandal like the McKim we all know and love, except that the bands are skinnier. With a price point of $88 and a cute pouch to accompany your shoes, I predict that these will be a big seller. I think that these will be available in silver and gold.


Since I tried on samples, the items may change slightly when they actually arrive in stores. Sometimes the details, print or style names, or options vary with the final product. This only makes things better because they have been more refined. I'll keep you updated about Summer as it begins to hit the floors. My goal is to do the scout work of the best looking and best fitting styles so that you can easily order by phone or internet.

xoxo

Monday, March 22, 2010

Crowned a Socialite


Wow! I've been crowned a socialite. Yesterday I was so honored to be tagged by the lovely Beth Dunn of Social Climbers. She is the sweetest. The Official Preppy Mafia has a new tag!!! Beth and her Preppy Mafia, yours truly as the Social Director, are taking over the world one monogram at a time. And we like nice people. Please read the rules and questions and consider yourself tagged because you are all lovely bloggers.

I'm so happy to have also been tagged by Sweet Southern Prep for this fun award, too! Thanks to both of you!

I'm crowning you a socialite!
The rules-
Click on the above button and paste onto your blog/website
Answer the below questions
Pass onto 10 bloggers that you Love, go to their blog and let them know they've been tagged
1. Who is your style icon? Audrey Hepburn

2. What is your favorite socialite lit book? Overnight Socialite by Bridie Clark

3. Favorite party theme? Pink and Green, specifically, I'd love to do a Taboo party!

4. Go to Halloween costume? Brownie girl scout. The funniest thing is that I have the real Brownie uniform. The people in the store must have thought I was crazy...It's a girls' size 14 and is complete with brown shorts, brown knee socks, sash and beanie!

5. Extravagance you cannot live without? Eating in wonderful restaurants.

6. Living person you admire? Well, this person recently died, but had such a profound impact on my life, so I'm going to say Mother Marguerite Therese. She gave me poise, tact, and compassion in addition to the ability to diagram a compound sentence!

7. Greatest Fear? I'd have to agree with Beth's answer: Something happening to my children terrifies me.

8. Trait you deplore in yourself? Being overly critical of myself.

9. Which talent would you most like to have? Being more athletic and coordinated.

10. Greatest Achievement? Having my daughters and watching my two girls grow into young ladies.

I'm crowning the following socialites:
1. A Town and Country Life
2. The Bogarde Buzz
3. EKM's Epigrams
4. Tales of an All American Girl
5. Just Don't Quit. Ever.
6. Let the Tide Pull Your Dreams Ashore
7. Village Palm
8. The Pink Washingtoniette
9. Summer in Newport
10. Desperately Seeking Seersucker

Happy Monday to all of you!

xoxo

Saturday, March 20, 2010

What stop sign?

Believe it or not, living in a foreign country prepares you for life in the United States and provides incredible life experiences that you can read about here. Driving in Mexico is one such experience. Living in Mexico really refined my driving (and negotiating) skills to an art, although it did take some time for me to learn the nuances of driving in Mexico.


Mexican stop sign

Distracted drivers wouldn’t last one day here. Same goes for people who are afraid of merging into traffic. In a city of almost 20 million people, there is no time for hesitation. I was also very interested to learn that the red stop signs reading Alto didn’t mean that I had to stop. Sometimes people gently pause or roll through the alto signs, but most of the time, if you don’t see anyone else in the intersection, it’s fair game to keep going in many neighborhoods! One of the most surreal experiences for me was to ride as a passenger in a car whizzing through red lights on Paseo de la Reforma, the main thoroughfare through Mexico City, late one evening.







Image of Paseo de la Reforma from www.aerialarchives.com.

Knowing when I could and could not run red lights turned into another comical adventure one Saturday morning. It was early in the morning and I wanted to buy gas and get a Reforma newspaper. I had 100 pesos or about $10, just enough to get a little gas and a newspaper. The Polanco neighborhood where I lived was deserted at 8 in the morning, so I decided to run the red light at the intersection of Homero and Newton. Yes, I knew that I shouldn’t have gone through the light… No sooner had I crossed the street into the gas station, and a friendly police officer in brown pulled up beside me in a motorcycle.





Transit police in Mexico City. Photo from El Universal.

We started to discuss the situation at hand. The friendly officer told me that “we” could resolve my error by working together…Long story short, the officer wanted some money for his “lunch and soft drink” to forget about my minor traffic violation. But, I was in a bit of a bind since I only had $100 pesos with me. “NO PROBLEM,” said the officer. He waited while I got gas, accompanied me to my apartment building, waited outside with the doorman while I got my ATM card, and ultimately accompanied me to the ATM machine where I withdrew another $100 pesos for his “lunch!” Easy and inexpensive situation to solve.

This was my first and only traffic violation in Mexico. Before you think badly about me…I’m probably the most law abiding citizen you’ll ever meet. I’ve been accused of being “too good.” But you know what they say, “when in Rome…”

Keep reading my Mexico stories…many more driving stories to come including bulletproof cars and windows and my super James Bond skills driving course! Lots more fresas, food, and vacation stories to come, too!



Hope everyone has some good plans for the weekend. It's been very busy here with DAR convention events, my Dad's birthday, and other fun things. I'll post more about later. We're supposed to be a sunny 70 degrees here today.

xoxo

Friday, March 19, 2010

Surprise Eggs

Good morning! This year I'm thinking about using Lilly Pulitzer's market tote as the Easter basket or part of the Easter basket for my minnies. Yesterday, I picked up some market totes and am playing around with filling them. I'm waiting to see the Lilly gift with purchase basket that should be available soon to make my final decision. Usually, I fill the baskets with little games and trinkets, and a little bit of candy. Unique eggs are one of my favorite finds. Here are two fun ideas for surprise eggs:


These Kinder eggs are so much fun! Each Kinder egg has a little plastic capsule inside the delicious hollow chocolate shell. The prizes sometimes require assembly and are such cute collector's items. Thousands of Kinder toys have been made and are highly collected by some people. Often, there are special edition eggs with special holiday toys or toys from certain characters. It's a fun way to brighten an Easter basket, but Kinder eggs are available year round.


I just adore this Easter Surprise Egg from Sucre. Your Easter basket gets an extra surprise with this hollow milk chocolate egg filled with a surprise! Every surprise egg contains a special coupon while only one contains a Golden Ticket.

What are you putting in your Easter baskets this year? Are you using a unique basket idea such as a market tote?

xoxo

Crepes!


This recipe comes to me from my friend Dragana. I've made crepes using many different recipes, but this one has been the best. These turn out perfectly every time and are so light and delicious.

Les crêpes

Ingredients:

2 cups of flour
2 eggs
3 cups of water and milk (I use half milk, half water. Some recipes only use milk, others more water than milk. It is up to you.)
1 tablespoon of sugar
A pinch of salt
1 tablespoon of oil
Cooking spray

Method:
1. Mix eggs, flour, sugar, and liquid using the blender.
2. Add a pinch of salt and some oil. It should be very smooth, and not as thick as pancakes.
3. Let the mixture sit for 5 minutes. This is important!
4. Fry in a non-stick pan using cooking spray.
5. Flip in the air, or flip the crepes using a spatula.
6. Serve warm or hot with jam, chocolate, sugar/cinnamon, powdered sugar, etc.)

These crepes will flip perfectly in the air if they are cooked properly. I only use a few tablespoons and carefully spread out in the pan by swirling in a circular motion as soon as it is in the pan. My favorite crepes are made with cajeta (a type of caramel) with nuts. If I don't have cajeta, I love to eat crepes with Nutella. So good!


My top 5 crepe fillings:
1. Cajeta with nuts. Seriously, you simply must try cajeta. It is so smooth and delicious.
2. Nutella with vanilla ice cream on top
3. Cinnamon and sugar with melted butter, the classic crepe in my opinion
4. Strawberries and cream
5. Savory crepes with gruyere, roquefort, brie, and provolone

xoxo


P.S. Mil gracias to my dear friend Alice at Summer is a Verb for sending me a lovely dose of Mexican society magazines.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Hidden Lilly Gems

Be sure to look at these wonderful items from the latest Lilly Pulitzer collection. I often look at the most popular Lilly items or items from the catalog and sometimes can overlook hidden gems. Everyone has seen the Shayna dress in the spring catalog, but here are some other winners!

The Kenlyn pant offers a flattering fit and elegant wide legs. Your waist looks instantly slimmer in this pant and the sateen feel of the fabric holds it's shape well. Perfect for travel or play. One of my biggest clothing pet peeves is having clothes that stretch too much and look baggy or ill-fitting by noon. The worst are stretched pants at the knees. Lilly Pulitzer's fabulous fit designers nailed it with the Kenlyn pant's fantastic fit and perfect stretch fabric. Paired with a cami and big sunglasses, you'll be so glamourous.



The Shere from fall that was a staple of my wardrobe is back for spring, this time as a wrap. So versatile and perfect for the change of seasons. I love this lavender color. It's such a unique addition to the Lilly Pulitzer spring collection and a surprise color in the traditionally pink and green palette. I plan to wear Shere throughout the summer because it will keep me warm in cool, air-conditioned buildings or on airplanes.



I was also thrilled to see the return of the Lulu dress for spring. Lulu sold out in many stores at full price as soon as it arrived. At last year's warehouse sale, Lulu was available in some special colors, too. The spring version of Lulu is just gorgeous! The pintucking in just the right places is so flattering.



What is your favorite hidden gem from the spring collection? Wishing you a fabulous day! We're getting up to 70 degrees in Maryland and I'm thrilled.

xoxo

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Umbrella chic

Happy St. Patrick's Day, dear blog readers!

After the heavy rain we have had for the past week in Maryland, I started to evaluate my current umbrella situation and have decided that I would like to welcome the April showers with a new umbrella. Which of these lovelies do you like the most?

What could be preppier than a monogrammed umbrella? I just adore this!



Perfect to drop in any bag or purse, this Lilly Pulitzer printed umbrella from Le Sportsac will keep you dry on rainy days.



The French phrase pretty much sums it up nicely on this lovely pink umbrella.



Perhaps you were lucky enough to find one of these Liberty of London umbrellas at Target before they flew off the shelves.



How many times have you gotten soaked even though you had an umbrella? This delightful Cath Kidston birdcage umbrella protects you from the nastiest storm.


xoxo


P.S. I have a feeling that a leprechaun is going to visit the minnies later today. A full leprechaun report will follow!

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