Simply Having a Wonderful Sunday!

I awoke this morning to snow blanketing the campus–a rather rare occurrence down south. Of course, as a Northern girl, I scoffed a little at first at all of the emails and texts detailing the closure of campus for a tiny dusting of snow and ice. But I am absolutely in love with the lazy, cosy atmosphere that has washed over my school in it’s wake. Everyone is sweet and warm and taking a day to relax, do homework, and love being together.

It’s a beautiful thing to experience in the last few days before we head home to celebrate Thanksgiving.

Speaking of Thanksgiving, I have to share this awesome infographic from Love Taza and her sponsor, Sweetgreen! It’s everything you ever wanted to know about Thanksgiving–which, I’m the first to admit, is my favorite holiday, second to only Christmas. Any day with the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, green bean casserole, apple pie, and family time with Christmas carols in the background is a win in my book!

Eating locally isn’t a new trend - the first Thanksgiving featured seasonal ingredients grown in Plymouth Colony, and throughout the US, local produce is still incorporated into Thanksgiving meals today.  Since we are all about sourcing and eating local foods, we wanted to celebrate the regional cuisine that is consumed on this holiday. Check out our infographic to learn more about variations on the Thanksgiving meal across the US.

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Adorable Little Ones

I don’t think I have a case of baby fever, at the moment. The same cannot be said for many of my college compatriots, who I see swooning over the little ones running about campus with a hungry look in their eyes. They’re so ready.

I am so not.

I do not want diapers or dirty dishes or throwing up or all my money spent on all of the above.

Logically.

But all of the cute fall and winter pictures of little hipster children? Yep. I’m there. I love them all. And a little bit of my heart cannot wait to dress my own in cute little pom pom hats and owl sweaters and baby slouchy boots and cart them around to parks and farmer’s markets and artisinal stores while we chatter amiably about the latest book that we have read together.

Le sigh. A girl can dream.

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Little Eleanor from Love, Taza. She’s a girl after my own heart.

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Curly haired little guy. My dream.

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What could be sweeter?

 

J. Crew Holiday Catalog…or, all I want for Christmas

My J. Crew holiday catalogue arrived today, and with it, a dismal study of my bank account and the realization of the fact that these beautiful sartorial pieces are a few years out of my reach at this point.

As much as I would love to drop all my paychecks on the glorious felted coats and patent leather ballet flat confections, I will, alas, be forced to waste my money on such discretionary spending as groceries and gas. Ah, this unfair mortal coil.

Here are a few of my favorite picks that will surely be at the top of my list…you know, as soon as my first best selling novel sells.

Fair Isle Leggings

Fair isle leggings

What’s prettier, comfier, or simpler than leggings in a cute pattern?

Double-cloth Metro Coat

Double-cloth metro coat with Thinsulate®

I adore the color, and the cut is to die for. Makes me think of beautiful chilled afternoons wandering the city!

Fair Isle Striped and Jeweled Sweater

Jeweled Fair Isle stripe sweater

A gorgeous mix of my favorite pattern and the most beautiful embellishment ever! In love.

Vintage Short Sleeve Pajama Set

Vintage short-sleeve pajama set

Absolutely comfy and cosy. Light enough for the summer, but with a sweater, this set makes the perfect winter loungewear.

Everly Cap Pump with Metallic Bow

Everly cap toe pumps with patent bow

Be still my heart. The most perfect pair of pumps I’ve ever seen.  I’m always game for a shoe that can transition between the audition room and the board room.

What’s on your Christmas dream wish list?

cosy by the fire

cosy by the fire

Dreaming of a Winter Wonderland

I’ll admit it: for me, we have officially reached the holiday season. I held out for as long as I could. I, too, scoffed at the sinfully arrival of Santas and snowmen to the store shelves. I denied myself the pleasure of Peppermint park and holiday cocoa.

But I simply cannot hold out any longer.

This morning, I decorated my room for the holidays, complete with garlands, snowglobes, and, of course, Christmas lights hung over the window. I listened to my Josh Groban holiday Pandora station as I drove cross town all morning.

And this evening, I will spend some time organizing my Holiday Bucket List.

Yes, the holiday season has officially arrived in Lauren’s heart, Are you all managing to hold out any longer?

Here’s a little piece of gorgeous inspiration for my decorating style. I can’t wait for snow and home!

 

Why I Can’t Shop Online

I am in crisis. A crisis of indecision. And this crisis centers around two pairs: one of ballet flats, and one of sparkling, glimmering earrings. Both contained in the absolutely seductive, sinful, and dangerous collection known as the C. Wonder Flash Sale.

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Ah, the woes of the college fine dresser.

I love fashion. I love dressing well. And I love getting new clothes.

And yet, I can count the number of new items that I have actually bought in the past three months on one hand.

I can have something in my hand, be totally ready to check out, sartorial visions of grandeur dancing through my head; and then, at the last second, my heart freezes up. My hands start to sweat. I begin to counter the thoughts of gorgeous new sweaters/footwear/earrings with the thought that I have to buy groceries in three days. Quicker than you can say “buyer’s remorse,” the offending object has been placed on a random shelf, and I leave the store, empty handed and ashamed, but with a fuller pocket book. This process has continually driven my family and friends crazy. Usually, I only buy something when I’m forced into it by a shopping co-conspirator. At this point, I would say that I spend more time regretting the items I didn’t buy then the few miststeps I’ve made in purchases.

This whirling maelstrom of frugality versus fashion comes to a head whenever I plunge into the world of online fashion. Thanks to shopping sites like RueLaLa and Hautelook, and flash sales from my personal favorites, C. Wonder and Kate Spade, I have a constant influx of preppy fashion splendor rushing into my inbox. 

I almost find something I’d love to have. About once every three days, an item even finds its’ way into my Shopping Cart. But of those chosen few, I think only two items have made their way to my doorstep in the past few months. Both of them were under $10.

The truth is, while I love the convenience of shopping online, I just can’t handle the finality of the numbers that pop up when you hit “sub-total.” Shipping costs kill me. Add to that the agony of waiting for the item to arrive. You don’t have anything in your hand when you trade in your money. I’m basically swiping my Visa on a wing and a prayer, hoping my new ballet flats will arrive and fit, Cinderella-style.

The jury is still out on this one. What do you guys think? How much time do you spend deliberating on purchasing decisions?

 

A Book Lover’s Blog…dreams do come true

I have a love/hate relationship with book recommendations. On the one hand, books are so personal to me that I find it difficult to imagine some online editor could really know what I would like, based off of my passing interest in “The Hunger Games.” So I’m always a little wary of any of those ‘If you loved…’ lists.

And on the other hand…I love books. And I am always on the hunt for new ones.

So I proceeded with trepidation when I heard about the website Go Book Yourself, which proffers “book recommendations by humans, because algorithms are so 1984.” Promising.

The site is beautifully done, with a lovely infographic and short n’ sweet descriptions of the book (too much detail is the death of literary recommendations). I decided to search for a match to one of my favorite reads of the past few months. And a miracle occurred! What should pop up in the first few book suggestions but my new favorite, The Marriage Plot by Jeffrey Eugenides. I will be laying my little bibliophile hands on these other two soon, have no doubt.

I could spend hours trolling around this site. But now I shall return to homework. Sigh. The life of a busy book fiend.Image

So Much to Be Thankful For…some girl(s) 2013

Wow. I have closed and opened the play I’ve been working on for a month, Neil Labute’s Some Girl(s), in the span of a week.

Time truly flies in the college theatre world.

I don’t think I’ll ever really be able to express how much this show has impacted my life. It did nothing less than remind me why I love this crazy, stressful, often debilitating, but essentially beautiful business. I was blessed with a phenomenal director who listened to me and encouraged me, and a cast of four incredible actors. More important than those artistic accolades is the distinction that they are just really, really incredible people, who have constantly lifted me up during a rather difficult time in my life.

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My entire family came to see this show, all the way from up north. It was my first “main” role at school in a large play, so their presence meant the world to me. The Boyfriend and his family also made the trip…really, could I be more lucky?

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And now, we’re on to the next adventure. It is going to be so strange living outside of the Some Girl(s) world. I’m in the don’t cry because it’s over smile because it happened mode at the moment. The universe has been very, very good to me.

Hope you are all having a great start to your November as well!

Cooking Basics from Refinery29

Have you heard of Refinery29? If not, I encourage you to sign up for their newsletter. It’s full of little tips and tricks edited in fun, modern style. Exactly the kind of publication I’d love to work for! 

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The post that caught my eye today was on the most basic principles of cooking: boiling an egg, how to make French toast, the appropriate way to bake a potato…all the little things you feel like you should know, until you step up to the counter to cook. This came at the perfect time; just last night, I found myself craving deviled eggs…and wondering what the process for boiling was. It’s fun little things like this that remind you you’re still a child, after all 🙂

Hope everyone is having a lovely start to the week!

 

Fall Back…

It’s most definitely November. The wind has grown chillier and more insistent; evening comes on sooner. I find myself reaching for an extra scarf or heavier jacket most mornings, because I can’t believe how quickly this month has arrived!

I absolutely love the fall. The period between my birthday and New Year’s is my absolute favorite: a whirlwind of coziness, family and friends, decorations, Christmas music, and (best of all?) delicious food!

In my quest for a happy mind and healthy body, I’ve wracked up quite a few dessert recipes I’d love to try. Here are the ones currently at the top of my wish list.

White Chocolate Espresso Cake by pastryaffair

White Chocolate Frosted Espresso Cake from Pastry Affair…all of my favorites in one beautiful, pastry package.

White Chocolate-Topped Cinnamon Chip Cinnamon Bars

White chocolate topped cinnamon chip bars from Averie Cooks…the only thing better than cinnamon? Cinnamon paired with chocolate.

Apple-Gingerbread Cobbler | MyRecipes.com

Apple gingerbread cobbler from My Recipes. Everything that is good and right about the holiday season.

I probably won’t have time to make any of these delicacies for a couple of weeks, since my show opens this coming weekend. Cue excitement. Cue panic. Cue growing to-do list. But just putting them up here motivates me to get back in the kitchen and enjoy delicious food! There is much truth to the saying that desserts like these are good for your soul.