a lovely living

Monthly Archives for April 2014

Easter Cookies

easter12As I debated what Easter treat I should post about, eggs obviously crossed my mind. Now if you head to Pinterest there are a million and one ways you can decorate eggs, but for whatever reason, they just don’t excite me. We’ll be dying our eggs with the little pack I always pick up from Target and my kids will be thrilled.

Now what does excite me are cookies. Shocked? Ha. I decided to get a little fancy decorating my Easter cookies this year. These aren’t particularly difficult, but if you can spread it out (making the dough, chilling the dough, baking the cookies and decorating them) over a few days, you’ll make it a little easier on yourself. Since we had a cold rainy day yesterday, I chose the hard way, but was able to get the cookies baked during the day and saved the decorating until the little ones were in bed and away from my icing!

Since I was using multiple colors and a couple of different consistencies (to line and fill the cookies) I grabbed a bag of disposable pastry bags which made things a lot easier. All that’s really required is a little bit of creativity and if that fails, you can always refer to Pinterest ;)

Here’s the recipe I used for the cookies and icing and here’s where some of my inspiration came from.

easterNow if only I hadn’t given up eating after dinner for Lent I’d be indulging in one of these right about now! Alas, they’ll have to wait until tomorrow!



Think Pink

pink6Pink has always been one of my favorite colors (although I have many) and for whatever reason this season I have been on the hunt for the perfect pair of pink pants. I didn’t want hot pink, but wasn’t going for a blush color either. I was searching for something somewhere in between. I finally came across this pair from Zara and when they arrived they were the perfect rose shade of pink that I had been looking for! I have big plans for them, so you’ll certainly be seeing them again (and maybe again) on here.

I’ve mentioned a few times that when it comes to particular trends that aren’t likely to hang around for all that long, I prefer to buy on the cheap side. I’ve loved some of the looks I’ve seen with metallic oxfords but I wasn’t up for spending the money on them. And then this pair crossed my path at Target. For $29 I really couldn’t pass them by. I love that they were perforated and the silver wasn’t too over powering. I initially questioned exactly how I’d wear them, but it didn’t take long to figure out!









pink1Details: Anthropologie jacket / JCrew t-shirt (similar) / Zara pants / Cookie Lee necklace / Kate Spade bag (similar) / Target shoes / Marc by Marc Jacobs sunglasses / LOFT bracelet (similar)

Thank you all for your continued votes for Redbook’s Real Women Style Awards! Voting is open daily through May 12th, so if you have a second your votes are very much appreciated! You can click here.




Happy Monday, all! I hope everyone enjoyed as beautiful of a weekend as we did here in PA, it was magnificent! I took a quick run on Saturday and returned a bit sun kissed. A wonderful reminder that spring really has arrived…and I need to start applying SPF :) On that note, and without much rhyme or reason, I’m sharing a dozen spring items that are on my unending wish-list. Maybe you need to give the Easter bunny a little hint for your basket ;)


(click image to enlarge)

1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7 / 8 / 9 / 10 / 11 / 12

Quite a coincidence that my girlfriend, Becky (who own’s Elizabeth and West where this striped midi skirt is from) happens to be wearing this skirt on her blog, Mommy in Heels, today! As if that wasn’t enough Meagan from Because of Jackie is wearing it too and they’re both offering a huge giveaway, so check them out!


High Five for Friday

Happy Friday! It’s been a great week here despite fighting off one of these final change of seasons cold’s. I managed to avoid all illnesses when my children and husband suffered a few weeks ago, but I suppose my time was bound to come. Regardless, I did my best to get outside and enjoy the beautiful sunshine! Another highlight of my week has to be being nominated by Redbook magazine for their Real Women Style Awards! Since I happened to have some photos on hand thanks to this little blog, I figured it couldn’t hurt to submit a few. Much to my surprise I became one of the 25 semi-finalists! If you have a minute, I’d very much appreciate your vote!!

Here’s a peek at the rest of my week:

H54F41111) Nail polish inventory. Apparently I love Essie and pastels. Surprise, surprise!

H54F41132) My handsome dude getting all geared up for soccer practice.

H54F41153) A trip to Target (to exchange something for my mom) led to me purchasing these shorts. I’ve been wanting a pair, but they always looked super short. Like college-age short. I tried them on anyway and was happy to see that they were flattering, lady-like and not nearly as short as I thought they’d be. I can’t wait to start wearing them, although that probably won’t be for at least another month. So if you like them, get yourself into Target and grab a pair because chances are they’ll be sold out by the time I’m able to style them on here!

H54F41124) As if I wasn’t already sold on my Birchbox’s, they start sending me food :)

Screen Shot 2014-04-10 at 9.59.11 PM5) Sorry, it’s the only other thing I could think of ;)

Enjoy your weekend everyone! I have a hot date lined up with my husband. Some one on one adult time is always appreciated!


Linking up with The Lauren Elizabeth for High Five for Friday!







pearls4Pearls are not the first piece of jewelry I reach for by any means, but that’s not to say that I don’t love the elegance and beauty they can add to an outfit. I realize that for any of you southern gals, they are most likely a staple in your wardrobe, but for me they feel all the more special when I only break them out every now and then. I always find myself struggling as to how to wear them, but the past few times I have grabbed them, I’ve tied them with a simple piece of ribbon at the neck. This subtle touch is just enough to add an element of interest that’s all the more fun. pearls3






pearls8Details: Boden top (sold out but love this and this option) / JBrand pants / Premier Designs pearls / Boden pumps (similar) / Kate Spade bag (similar) / Kate Spade sunglasses /  Comptoir de Cotonniers jacket (similar)

How about you? Do you reach for your pearls often? And how do you like to wear them?

For all of you that have voted for me on Redbook’s Real Women Style Awards, thank you!! I truly appreciate your support! Voting is open HERE until May 12th and only requires a click of the picture.

chicken8I’m thankful to friends that are always sharing new recipes with me. Trust me I’m not the one coming up with these things, I’m just here to share the goods! After my girlfriend’s raving reviews, this recipe did not let down. I don’t cook with wine all that frequently, but every time I do I remember what great flavor it can add to a dish. I grabbed a box of mushroom and herb risotto from Trader Joe’s to go along with the chicken and it turned out to be the perfect pair! Amazing flavor from both that left me slightly over-indulging…you’re forewarned ;) You can find the recipe via Skinny Taste here.




floral5I’m a huge fan of wearing floral prints. From tops to bottoms and scarves and this season even shoes, it’s all too easy to break out this oh so feminine print. I came across this top in TJMaxx a few weeks back and loved the soft floral pattern. I was even happier when I saw the $98 French Connection tag marked down to $29! That surely put a spring in my step ;) You can see some other floral tops I love here, here and here. I chose to keep the rest of the outfit simple so that the top wouldn’t have to compete. I just may need to work this top into an Easter outfit!



floral6I swear this shirt was freshly pressed, and then I had to go and wear a seatbelt!


floral2Details: French Connection top via TJMaxx (options here, here and here) / JCrew pants / Shoes, old (similar) / Kate Spade bag (similar) / Kate Spade sunglasses

In other news, I’ve been selected as one of America’s best dressed women for Redbook Magazine!! A friend of my mother actually brought the contest to my attention and so I thought what the heck, I’ll submit a few photos. Well, it turns out that I was selected as one of the top 25! Voting is open until May 12, so for anyone that has a minute, I’d really appreciate your vote, it literally only takes a second. Who knew these blog photos would come in handy ;) Thanks in advance everyone and you can vote HERE. 

Linking up with Rebecca for What She Wears: Floral



Hair Stylin’

I don’t know about you, but I end up changing my hair rather frequently. I started blogging last May and since then I have gone from shoulder length blonde hair, to ombre to short and natural with a few highlights. Rarely do I go into the salon without an inspiration picture in my pocket (or iphone). Magazines used to be my source of inspiration, but these days it’s more than likely Pinterest. Since I never know when I’m going to get the ‘itch’ I like to keep a running list (board) of my favorite hairstyles. I’ve selected a few of my favorites from every length to share with you today. Maybe one will strike your fancy!

hairstyleDo you have a go-to style or do you like to change it up as much as I do?


High Five for Friday

We’ve found our way to Friday once again, friends! I have to say that around these parts we’ve had a pretty good week. The weather for the most part was great which allowed us to get outside instead of being entrapped in our home. I also managed to escape being at the end of any April Fools jokes! How about you?

At the same time, there have also been unfortunate events, both near and far, on small and larger scales that have been brought to my attention this week. This world isn’t always an easy place to live in and we’re all going to have numerous trying times and seasons of our life to go through. These moments leave me feeling thankful for all of the time I’m able to spend with my family, no matter how mundane certain days may feel. I don’t mean to put a damper on your Friday, but go hug your family, call your friends and be thankful for all the good times you’re having in your life!

Now enjoy a few shots from my week which will hopefully put a smile back on your face :)

1) My two beauties (ok, one cool guy and a little princess), outside enjoying some lovely spring weather.


2) I couldn’t be happier to finally have a skin regime to follow. Thanks to a friend for introducing me to Rodan and Fields, I now feel like I am actually taking care of my skin in a ‘big girl’ kind of way. I’ll have more to say about this in the coming weeks! Are any of you using their products?H54F431

3) I’ve totally been lucking out at TJMaxx lately! If only they’d stop putting these stickers where you can’t remove them without leaving a sticky circle on your heel, I’d be doubly as happy ;)


4) Miss Madelyn at her music class, which only leads me to #5…


5) Last week I showed you a shot of Madelyn lip-synching and this week I’m going one adorable step further. Here she is in the act. Let me remind you that no words (or sounds for that matter) are coming out.



Linking up with The Lauren Elizabeth for High Five for Friday.

My Girl

mauve1My son spends his mornings at pre-school, so every M-F I get to enjoy some one on one time with my sweet little lady. This was one particular morning where we took a little stroll together. I feel very blessed to be able to experience raising both a boy and a girl. They are so drastically different which makes it challenging but all the more enjoyable. My son, like myself, enjoys keeping things in line and never misses a beat. He even asks what we all had for lunch and wants to know everything we did while he was at school. My daughter on the other hand, is a carefree spirit that enjoys being the center of attention. She’s also one that will walk herself to timeout after she gets herself in trouble ;) Life is anything but dull!

With most of my week spent chasing after and rolling around on the ground playing games with my kids, I find it’s often easiest for me to be in comfortable clothing. I am not against yoga pants, leggings, t-shirts and sneakers. In fact, I’m all for them! LOFT has recently come out with a new line, Lou & Grey, and this line of everyday lounge clothing already has me hooked. The pieces are well made and everything that I have seen from maxi dresses, to t-shirts and jackets have been so incredibly comfortable! If you haven’t yet, you should check it out here.







mauve2My outfit: LOFT Lou & Grey jacket / LOFT Lou & Grey t-shirt / Anthropologie leggings (old) / Converse sneakers / Tiffany necklace / Marc by Marc Jacobs sunglasses / Michelle watch

Madelyn’s outfit: Gap jacket (similar) / Old Navy leggings / Boden t-shirt (old) / Toms 


Older Newer