Chile Honeymoon: A Guide to Packing for All Climates

Friday, October 31, 2014

Our honeymoon in Chile was pretty gosh darn amazing. I will admit, however, that packing for it was a little stressful. Chile is a super long country with many different climates, and we visited quite a range of places. From the city, to wine country, the beach, and frozen Patagonia, I knew as I was packing that I would need a wardrobe that would carry me through all sorts of weather and temperatures. Oh, and didn't want to check any baggage. 

I used my trusty Kate Spade Saturday luggage and miraculously, everything fit. KSS doesn't pay me to say this, but OMG I am obsessed with this bag! The shoe compartment underneath is key. I fit four pairs of shoes in there!

Generally, when I'm traveling, I limit myself to packing one item of clothing for each day traveled. For example, for this trip, we were traveling for thirteen days, so I brought thirteen items. For my trip to Boston and Upstate New York this past summer, we were only gone for ten days, so I only brought ten items of clothing. For this rule, I don't include socks, underwear, outerwear, or bathing suits because they are small and they don't contribute to an overall everyday outfit.

For each flight, I aimed to wear at least one of my most bulky items. Amazingly, my down jacket (c/o my mother-in-law) scrunched down to pretty much nothing, so I wore my chunky knit sweater on the plane to save room in my bag. Now for the full breakdown of what I brought:

I tried to pack according to a narrow color scheme: black, white, grey, and pastels. Once I had picked out the items I wanted to bring, I did what I refer to as "packing math" to figure out how many outfits I can get out of what I plan to bring, and if those outfits will be appropriate for where I'm going. I write down one major item, and then underneath I list all the pieces I could combine with it to complete an outfit. Packing math looks like this:

Black Pants
striped tee
striped tee + chambray shirt
striped tee + black sweater
striped tee + pink sweater
lace peplum tee
lace peplum tee + black sweater 
etc, etc, etc

I did this process for the pants, leggings, skirt, dresses, and jumpsuit and discovered that I could make over 40 completely unique outfits. Way more than enough for a two week trip! And the best part was that it all fit in a small carry on! Yay!

Birthday Girl

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

When: Thursday, October 23rd, 2014 -- My Birthday!

Where: Brunch and Movies

Weather: Mid-80s and hot!

For my birthday this year, I wanted to keep things simple and low key, especially since Alex and I were just getting back from Chile (seriously, posts on that coming soon!). I decided what I really wanted to do to celebrate was just feel normal and comfortable after a big trip, so we walked Bucket, went to brunch at Blu Jam, and saw Gone Girl.

Usually, I love wearing a completely new outfit on my birthday, but I pretty much blew my shopping budget buying new stuff for the honeymoon, so I treated myself to this J Crew skirt that was on deep discount. I've never tried a flirty, flippy skirt like this, so it took me a couple tries to get this look right. By high-low tucking this embellished tee I got last year around Christmas, I was able to define my shape, while showing off the shirt and the skirt as the same time. Bonus: tucking this way covers a post-brunch bump.

Urban Outfitters Tee Shirt (old) -- Similar
Vintage Coach Bag -- Similar
Frye Heels (old) -- Similar

Veggie Ramen Stir-Fry

This stir-fry is super easy to make, not to mention... cheap! Made with vegetables from my Farm Fresh to You box, and a couple of packets of ramen noodles, this dish is really satisfying, but still full of good, green nutrients.

-1 Tablespoon oil (olive, sesame, or peanut)
-1 head of broccoli
-2 heads of boy choy
-1/2 of a red onion
-1 bunch of kale

-2 packs of 3-minute ramen (throw away the flavor pack)

-3 Tablespoons soy sauce
-2 Tablespoons rice vinegar
-Pinch of white pepper
-Splash of oil

1. In a wok, heat up the tablespoon of oil, add vegetables and cook until softened.

2. While the vegetables are cooking, boil the ramen in a separate pot according to the package instructions. Remember not to add the flavor pack!

3. Combine last four ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.

4. When noodles and vegetables are both cooked, strain the noodles and add to wok. Cover with the sauce from step 3 and stir to combine.

BONUS: Scramble an egg and pour it over the top of the noodles and cook through. Adds a little protein!

This post is sponsored* by Farm Fresh to You. To get $10 off your first box, click the image below, and enter code ANNI9875 at checkout.

Orange is the New Black

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

When: Monday, October 27th, 2014

Where: Work at Trinkets and Treasures

Weather: 80s and dry.

We had an amazing honeymoon in Chile -- more on that in upcoming posts! -- but I'm glad to be home and getting back into the swing of things. It's about twenty degrees cooler than when we left and I'm taking the 80 degree weather as a sign that fall is finally here. 

Given that Halloween is this week, I thought it would be appropriate to step out in orange and black. Today's Trend Spin Link Up confirms that I'm on the right track. When dressing for holidays, I try to take more of an abstract approach that isn't too obvious. I love these coral-y orange jeans. I've raved about how comfortable they are in the past and I'm so glad that even with a little post-wedding weight, they still fit. I love the way this heathered black and grey peplum top pairs with the higher rise of these pants -- plenty of tummy coverage!

These boots don't often venture out of my closet, but I love the autumnal look they give to any outfit. Their slightly greenish tone pairs perfectly with my new vintage green Time Will Tell birthday gift watch. I'm hoping for some chillier days so I can wear these boots with this watch again soon!

Urban Outfitters Jeans (old) - Similar
Sam Edelman Boots (old) - Similar

Glacier Grey

Saturday, October 11, 2014

I am obsessed with this little grey dress from Target. It's basically an extra long tee shirt, so it makes the perfect throw-and-go piece. I seriously want one in every color. I'm pretty sure that grey is my favorite color of the moment -- "color" being a loose term. I bought this cardigan for our trip back east, and I've been wearing the hell out of it. I love switching up the silhouette by wrapping it around my body and buttoning it at the back. This little trick not only makes the sweater much more of a versatile closet staple, but helps define my shape, rather than just draping over me.

disparate elements

Thursday, October 9, 2014

I wanted this neon skirt so bad, but just needed a good excuse to buy it. Alex and I talked about going to Hawaii on our honeymoon for about four point four seconds, and that was all it took for me to be like, "yep, I NEED this neon pencil skirt!"

We've since nixed the Hawaii Honeymoon idea and decided on Chile (where I am right now... Freaky!) So, I've been forced to wear this skirt around LA. Oh, the struggle!

Coast to Coast hosted a brights and pastels challenge, and this top embodied both those traits, making it much easier to pull this outfit together. All it takes is one unifying piece to bring together seemingly disparate elements. 

Alex's Favorite "Roasted" Potatoes

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

I'm not really sure why we call these potatoes roasted, because they never go in an oven. Rest assured, whatever the name is, they are really good! Alex is a roasted potato fanatic -- I'm more of a mashed kind of girl, but whatever -- and this recipe is always met with rave reviews from my picky eater husband. When I got these fingerling potatoes and red onion in my Farm Fresh to You box, I know exactly what I would make.

- 1 lb fingerling potatoes
- 1 small red onion, thinly sliced
- 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
- Salt
- Pepper
- 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 1 teaspoon garlic salt
- 1 teaspoon white pepper

1. Boil fingerling potatoes whole until cooked through. Strain and set aside to cool.

2. In a frying pan, caramelize red onions in oil and a pinch of salt and pepper until soft. Remove onions and place in casserole dish, retaining oil.

3. Slice cooked potatoes in half long ways, and place cut side down on the hot cooking oil. Fry on medium-high heat until crisp and brown, about 5-10 minutes.

4. Add onions back to pan with the potatoes, and all seasonings. With burner on medium heat, mix together until potatoes are coated in seasoning.

5. Serve in the same casserole dish that previously held the onions. Enjoy!

This post is sponsored* by Farm Fresh to You. To get $10 off your first box, click the image below, and enter code ANNI9875 at checkout.

Red Pepper Basil Julep

Sunday, October 5, 2014

There's this great bar that is right around the corner from where we live. At the Local Peasant, they serve this amazing basil-pepper martini. It's one of those menu items that sounded so weird and unusual that I just had to try it. It's so crave-ably delicious that it's the only drink I'll ever order there.

When I got my Farm Fresh to You box, there was a single red bell pepper inside. I'm not the biggest fan of bell peppers -- maybe it's just the texture -- but I love the flavor. I decided to try my hand at infusing the pepper flavor into a cocktail... Turns out, it couldn't be more simple. For the first steps, all you'll need is a bell pepper, a jar, and your favorite liquor. This could work well with rum or vodka, but I had a bottle so SoCo whiskey on hand.

Slice your pepper into rounds and remove the seeds. Place inside a jar and cover with whiskey. Store in a cool, dry place for between 12-24 hours.

Once your pepper has had the time to infuse properly into the liquor, gather your next ingredients.

To make two red bell pepper basil juleps you'll need:
- 4 ounces of pepper infused whiskey
- 6-8 basil leaves
- juice from half a lemon
- 2 Tablespoons honey
- ice

In a martini shaker, muddle together half the basil leaves, the lemon juice, and honey. Pour the whiskey over the top and stir to combine. Strain into a lowball glass filled with ice, and garnish with the remaining basil and a couple of the pepper rounds.

Sip the sweet, spicy comfort and enjoy!

I served our juleps with Alex's favorite "roasted" potatoes from Farm Fresh to You, asparagus, and steaks.  Recipe for the potatoes is up next...

This post is sponsored* by Farm Fresh to You. To get $10 off your first box, click the image below, and enter code ANNI9875 at checkout.

Farm Fresh to You

Saturday, October 4, 2014

When Alex and I lived in Boston we had a farmshare that we picked up in Copley Square once a week. While it was great getting a surprise mix of local produce and trying out ingredients I had never seen before, some weeks we'd miss out because I couldn't make it into town to pick up my share. Since moving to LA, I've been contemplating subscribing to a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) or farmshare again, but since our schedule is so random, I was worried that I'd never get around to picking up my box on the right day. Enter Farm Fresh to You.

Signing up for the service was pretty painless, but the best part is that they deliver right to your door. I went the website, picked what kind of produce box I wanted, and how often I wanted to get it. I chose the Regular Sized Mixed Fruit and Veggie which costs $33. The description said it would feed 2-4 people and they were right! We got two pomegranates, 3 Bartlett pears, 5 gala apples, a pound of Ruby Crescent potatoes, a bunch of kale, two heads of broccoli, three red onions, a pound of baby bok choy, and a red bell pepper (phew!) It was more than enough for just Alex and me. I will probably move down to the smaller box for my next delivery.

The delivery day is based on the zip code. Mine is Friday, which works perfectly because usually our work schedule gets busier over the weekend, so it was great to skip the trip to the grocery store around that time.

Once I signed up, waiting for my package was like waiting for Christmas morning. I was really excited to see what I would get! Luckily, at noon on Thursday, I was able to log into my account and see what was heading my way. I instantly started brainstorming what I could make with my box.

When it arrived, I drafted up a little menu of recipes I could make with these ingredients... And I fully intend on scarfing down each bite so that nothing goes to waste before we leave for our honeymoon next week. Stay tuned for Go Check out photos and recipes for a red pepper-basil julep, apple-pear mini crisps , a kale smoothie, stir fried veggies and ramen, and Alex's favorite roasted potatoes!

This post is sponsored* by Farm Fresh to You. To sign up for your own box, click the link below and don't forget to enter code ANNI9875 for $10 off your first box!

Yellow Conference Take-Aways

Wednesday, October 1, 2014
Wow. I can't believe that it's October (my birthday month, woo!) already. September flew by in a blur. It was by far the busiest month of my life, so far. I only expect (see what I did there?!) that it will get busier from here on out. So, before too much times goes by, let me take a second to reflect.

It feels like September started on August 28th this year. I took what felt like a little bit of a leap of faith for me and I attended my first conference: Yellow. Being in a room full of women who want to advocate positive change in this world through their creativity, humanitarianism, and spirit was much a moving and inspiring experience for me. On the eve of the biggest launch of my business' short life, taking two days away from the studio felt really scary, but ended up being the best use of 48 hours I could have asked for at the time.

I think, even weeks later, I'm still processing what I learned there, but for now. Here are my main takeaways:

"Because of who we are … we have something to offer the world." -Sarah Dubbledam
I have always felt that I was put on this earth to do something more with this life than to simply go through it. For the longest time I believed that my "more," my great achievement, would be attributed to being a business owner, a fashion designer. But I'm here. I've arrived. I am those things. But I still feel a longing for something greater. I'm still not sure what the more to my more will be, but that brings me to my next point.

"Do as much as you dream." -Carlos Whittaker
So often, I find myself dreaming the day away with plans for the far-off future -- a small boutique! a warehouse! a house with a sewing studio out back! collaborations with major stores! seeing my designs on celebrities! having a thousand followers! -- that I forget to actually do, to act. What are the steps I can take to move towards those lofty goals? What can I do today?

"Do not despise your small beginnings." -Lindsey Eryn Clark
I'll readily admit that I sometimes get very down on myself about the state of my business, especially when I'm daydreaming about the future, or comparing myself to other small businesses. I have to remember that I've been in business for less than two years, and this, right now, is my small beginning. Everyone has to start somewhere. I'm working to embrace this season of growth and not be so depressed when it feels like I'm not making the progress I feel I should be making.

"Break up with your ideal self." -Allie Marie Smith
Along the same lines of embracing where you are now, is embracing who you are now. So what, I don't own a boutique today? So what, I'm not taller and thinner? So what, I don't have piles of friends? So what, I don't have a master's degree? So what, I don't live in New York and work for a major designer? (Was that a little too Drunk Uncle for you?) I'm trying to accept the person that I am today, and not worry so much about being something I'm not and will probably never be.

"It's not what you're passionate about, it's what you're willing to suffer for." -Hannah Brencher
Everyone has passions in life, but it is those who are willing to suffer for them who will be successful. I always say that I would make clothing even if it didn't pay. (And sometimes it doesn't.) I'm willing to stay up until 4 in the morning filling a custom order, run my hand over with a sewing machine, and push and push and push until this dream comes alive.

"Just ask." -Ashley Howell
One of the most practical business lessons came from the creator of the Givve Collection. What hurt can asking do? Need help? Ask. Want advice? Ask. Confused? Ask.... ask ask ask. The worst thing that anyone can say is no. And that's not so bad!

To other Yellow attendees? What did you take away from the conference?

Huge thanks to Joanna Waterfall for putting this amazing event together! I absolutely can not wait for next August!
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