the Perfect Pin: Kick it off

For anyone that hasn’t discovered the amazing-ness that is Pinterest…take this as your  heads up that you MUST check it out!  Pinterest is essentially a virtual pin board that you use to organize all things you find on the internet.  Not only can you “pin” things from websites you find but you can also see other people’s “pins” to get inspiration.  When you “pin” something {or “re-pin” something from someone else’s boards} you get a picture to remind of the loveliness as well as the original link to where the pin came from.  I will warn you that it is ADDICTIVE…time seems to fly by when you start a-pinning and before you know it…potentially hours have gone by.  So since i admittedly spend way too much time browsing the wonderfulness of Pinterest; I figured I should share some of that wonderfulness with you.  So stay tuned for many more “Perfect Pin’s” to come:

What better way to kick off “the Perfect Pin” then with a recipe using non other then arguably the most amazing chocolatey sweetness creations of all time…that lovely hazelnut chocolate combo we love so much…Nutella.  This pin can be found on my “Sweetness Ain’t Your Weakness” board.  So without further ado I present to you…Nutella Cupcakes…enjoy

Pin it up!

~ Jillian

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Color me Happy: Shades of Gray & Yellow

A hot color combo these days in everything from home interiors and fashion to wedding and party decor is Yellow & Gray.  Yellow just makes gray happy!  Adding little pops of yellow is a great way to bring a little sunshine into your life!  Try just adding a few hints of this combo in your home…

{* Image from mydesignchic.com}


{* Home decor items are from CB2, Crate & Barrel, ZGallerie, and West Elm}

{Images from Inspiration for the HomeCreate H Design}

Or dig thru your closet and I bet you could find a few pieces that maybe you’ve never put together before?!  Any way you do it; yellow is a bright and sunny HAPPY color!  You can pull it in with an accessory like earrings or a scarf {look here for scarf tying tips} or go bold with a yellow dress or shoes!


{* Apparel & accessories from Target}

Looking for a little wedding or party inspiration?  This sunny combo will make every bride and party guest smile! {Give MOSS a buzz for any flower and decor assistance you might need for your wedding or party!}

{ Image from Hostess with the Mostess}

{Image from Every Last Detail}

{Image from Casa Haus}

I hope this inspires you to give your home, wardrobe or party goodies a fresh & modern punch.  Enjoy adding a little happy sunshine to your day!

~ Jillian

a Novel idea

Problem: Too many books and magazines just sitting around, collecting in your house {come on…you know you have a stack or two hiding somewhere!}

Solution: Turn them into furniture!

I will admit it, I absolutely have this problem.  So many great magazines that you just feel like you can’t throw away for some reason {for me its Real SimpleWhole Living & Yoga Journal}, or all those cool books you’ve read but dont’ know have the bookshelf space to display them.  So after seeing these pictures I put a little magazine and book clean up project on my crafting to-do list.  First order of business create an end table from all those fabulous coffee table books that…well…don’t live on my coffee table.  Let me just tell you how much I love it!  It’s currently sitting next to a lovely lounge chair and supports a reading lamp.  {I can promise you it will change locations in my house probably 45 times before its all said and done…things are constantly moving around in my house…that’s just how i roll}

Next order of business was to do something with all those magazines that pile up over time but i’m not quite ready to part with.  I first snagged a few of them to roll up and put down in my boots {great way to keep the boots shape in your closet without spending mullah on fancy boot forms} then off to craft with the rest of the millions remaining mags.  After consulted Pinterest for some inspiration {duh} I decided to go the route of rolling and magazines to create a table of sorts {see inspiration picture below on the right}.  This took a little experimenting to figure out but with a stapler and a tone of paperclips we now have a cool rolled magazine table currently residing in our hallway!

{ Thanks to Decor Hacks &  Apartment Therapy for these loverly images}

So the moral of this story is that there are all sorts of creative uses for those items just laying around your house…all you gotta do is put your thinking cap on and get crafting!!

Happy Reading

~ Jillian

** Update: Here are a few images of my little trip down novel lane with my rolled magazine accent table & stack of books end table.  Enjoy!!

“Get Ready to Sweat”

I’m a yoga girl.  Always have been.  There is something so calming and spiritual about it but at the same time its a killer workout that keeps you flexible and strong.  There are all sorts of different types of yoga and depending on your goals and expectations you can really take it in any direction.  It’s all about balance, strength, breathing and calm under pressure.

One of my absolute favorite kinds of yoga is hot yoga.  {For anyone in the Atlanta area I totally recommend Atlanta Hot Yoga}  Now hot yoga is no joke; the room is kept at a balmy pleasant 102 degrees-ish.  Sounds ridiculous I know, but the heat creates an instant boost in your flexibility and a sort of cleansing feeling you get after releasing all that sweat…it is just fantastic.  You follow a consistent series of movements and poses that everyone from a yoga beginner to an expert can pick up.  By the end of the class you leave soaked in sweat feeling like you’ve stretched your muscles like Gumby, possibly lost a few pounds in sweat, given your body a good cleaning out and have an overwhelming sense of peace and balance.

A few things to remember before going to your hot yoga class:

  • Don’t eat anything heavy 1-2 hours before the class {trust me on this one…heat + full belly = No good!}
  • Drink plenty of water before, during and after the class
  • Wear comfortable workout clothing that wicks moisture and that you can move in {but not so loose that it trips you up}
  • Be sure to arrive a bit before the class start time to scope out your spot and get all set up before the class starts
  • Bring your yoga mat, a mat towel {or large bath towel}, a sweat towel and water

Now make sure you are prepared for the “quiet time” during the duration of the class.  Most teachers will stress the importance of no talking; it not only keeps you from disturbing those around you but allows you to focus on your body and dive a little deeper into the experience.  Don’t be surprised if it takes a little while for your body to adjust to the hot temperature.  My first time took me a few minutes to get used to the heat; initially I had the feeling of my heart racing a bit but after a few calming breaths I was back in business.  If you experience any odd things from the heat, simply sit down on your mat for a few seconds to catch your breath and you will be adjusted and back to it in no time.

So the next time you are looking for a change up in your workout routine or need a little extra peace in your life…give hot yoga a try.  You will not be disappointed!  {and let me know if you need a yoga buddy!}

Namaste

~ Jillian

Monday Mantra: What might have been

It’s that time again.  Time to wake up and head into work for the day after enjoying a {hopefully} lovely weekend.

Sometimes when you don’t even realize you are in need of something…it just pops up and BAM you realize how much you really were.  Well this weeks Monday Mantra did just that for me.  As we go thru life its very easy to get stuck in a rut and think that the place you are in your life is where you might just stay.  Which isn’t always a bad thing of course…but sometimes we forget that no matter how old we are, no matter what position we are in in life there is still the chance to do those things you have always dreamed of doing.  So remember that as you go thru your daily routine this week.  Don’t let yourself lose sight of those dreams {BIG and small}…you just never know when you might get the chance to fulfill them!

Read it…Repeat it…Pass it on

“It is never too late to be what you might have been”

Namaste & Happy Monday

~ Jillian

Nut anyone?

Don’t ask me where this one came from…I just happened to be looking thru my boards on Pinterest the other day and realized that on my “Just can’t help but smile” board I had a ton of random funny photos of squirrels?!/!/  I mean sure who doesn’t like a squirrel but i’ve never really considered myself a “squirrel” lover…but apparently squirrel’s do some funny stuff…that makes me laugh.

There’s the pictures of squirrels with WAY too much food in their cheeks:

The funny squirrel pictures with witty subtitles:

And my personal favorite – Interpretive Dancing Squirrel {& label of the lovely wine Scwal’ made by  Annie & Jeremy}

I know…super random.  But they made me laugh!!

Happy Friday.  “You’re gonna love my nuts”

~ Jillian

Snow on the Mountain

For those who know me well…you know that I day dream from time to time about packing up and heading out west.  To live somewhere like Colorado or Arizona where you are surrounded by nature and where people seem to live a bit of a slower paced life {at least compared to the hustle and bustle in the Big city}.  Since we are not packing up tomorrow and moving out there {at least not yet} we try to head out west at least once a year for a little ski action.

Ski vacations are really unlike any other vacation I’ve ever been on.  You are up early with all your gear on to catch the first lifts, and if you are lucky you get to some of that fresh snow before anyone else does.  After a full day out on the slopes its time for a little apres ski {arguably the best time of the day} where you sit by a fire with a lovely warm drink in hand {my personal favorite is Hot apple cider with a little bourbon in it} and take a little dip in the hot tub to relax those muscles after a full day of working them out!  Then its off to enjoy a lovely dinner and relax with your fellow vacationers before heading to bed to start all over again the next day.

This year we headed back to one of my favorite ski destinations Crested Butte, Colorado.  {happens to also be the place we got engaged…more on that later} At the beginning of the season this year things weren’t looking so good.  There was barely any snow falling and the resorts were struggling.  We headed out hoping that the conditions would improve and we could get some good skiing in.  In the first 24 hours we were there Crested Butte got 2 feet of snow!?!?!?  It was crazy!!  At one point in the day it was coming down so hard that by the time you got to the top of the lift there was an inch or two of snow on your shoulder!  The snow continued as the week went on and it turned out to be some of the best conditions we have had.  Jeremy and I went off one morning to do some skiing and had one side of the mountain literally to ourselves. I’m definitely not the most advanced skier but carving your way thru deep powder that is completely untouched is an experience that everyone should have!  It was amazing.  Overall we had a great trip {even enjoyed a little spa time with one of my favorite little ladies} and found it very difficult to come back to reality after such a great trip.


BIG thanks to the boys for doing all the planning.  It really was a great trip!!

~ Jillian

Monday Mantra: YOU

Monday mornings can be…awful dreadful impossible a challenge sometimes.  For those who work a Monday to Friday kind of job sometimes you really feel like you are working for the weekend {cue 80′s song} and the weekend just can’t come any sooner.  After enjoying that much deserved weekend where you have been able to rest & relax or get crazy & silly, really just do what you WANT to do; going back to work is a challenge {even if you love your job}!

So in honor of those peeps {and quite frankly for my own sanity as well}…I’ve decided to start a little practice…a little something to get you going into your week in the right frame of mind…something that will hopefully brighten your monday just a little bit and help you as you face any challenges that come your way.

Read it…repeat it…pass it on

“Today you are YOU,that is truer then true.

 There is no one alive who is YOUER then you”

~ Dr. Seuss

Namaste & Happy Monday

~ Jillian

My BIG fat Greek…Yogurt

It’s probably safe to say that I consume…well a TON of greek yogurt.  I can’t get enough of the stuff.  Not only is it delicious its also super good for you!  It has close to twice the protein as regular yogurt, it’s a great source of calcium, contains good for your tummy probiotics and has less lactose and fewer carbs!  I use it in place of sour cream for pretty much all recipes, add some fresh or frozen fruit to it for a lower sugar/higher protein breakfast or mix it with a little olive oil & salt and use it as a condiment for all sorts of things.  Lately I’ve been experimenting with using greek yogurt in some of my favorite recipes and have found that i LOVE the taste and texture even more!!  Below is one of the staples in my house {probably my husband’s favorite meal!} This is most likely not the Stroganoff you are used to…its actually a tomato based recipe that I think is even yummier then the original!  Be sure to make extra because the leftovers are just as yummy!

Beef Stroganoff {made by my wonderful Mother in-law}

* Below is the actual recipe…next to each item is my alternate / my form of measuring.  This recipe is NOT an exact science so a spoonful of this…dash of that works just fine!

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb ground beef {always go for organic if you can!}
  • 2 cans of tomato soup {typically I get store brand condensed soup}
  • 1 small container of sour cream {2 generous spoonfuls of Greek Yogurt}
  • 1 Tbsp mustard {1 good squeeze should do it}
  • 2 Tbsp brown sugar {I’ve reduced this to less then 1 tbsp and still LOVE the taste}
  • worcestershire sauce {a few dashes does the trick…especially if you like the taste}
  • 1/2 bag of egg noodles {the whole wheat version is lovely}

Directions:

  • Brown beef in pan {I like to use a pan that has taller edges so i can use it to mix all of the ingredients together}
  • Boil water to prepare egg noodles {egg noodles cook much faster then regular pasta…so be on the look out
  • Once beef is fully cooked, drain any grease; stir in both cans of soup, add greek yogurt, mustard, brown sugar & worcestershire {in that order} sometimes I add a little salt & pepper for good measure
  • Simmer on low to allow flavors to mix together; add noodles and Enjoy ~

This is one of my husband’s favorite dinners…so much so I can literally make this in my sleep.  And with a couple modifications to the original recipe {switch out of sour cream to greek yogurt & using less brown sugar} we’ve reduced the calories and added a few extra health benefits for good measure!

Happy Dinner

~ Jillian