Living a tasteful life

Monday, November 30, 2015

Cyber Monday Sale Favorites

It's that time again. Time to take advantage of those last few hours of deep discounts, and fill those online shopping carts with the items you weren't able to purchase in store on Friday. It can be overwhelming browsing multiple sites in search of the best deals on things you love. I thought I would narrow things down a bit and share a few of my favorites from Nordstrom, J.Crew Factory and Loft.

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving! 
Happy Shopping!


Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Jalapeno Popper Deviled Eggs

Last week I shared a few recipes for Thanksgiving appetizers and sides from Pinterest that I've been drooling over.  In my search, I came across a recipe for deviled eggs that I couldn't resist making. I whipped these bad boys up and took them to work for our office Thanksgiving and they seemed to bit a hit. I'm definitely making this recipe again this week to take to my in-laws. I highly recommend giving them a try! 

One thing that I really liked about this recipe was that the prep work can be done in advance. I boiled my eggs a day ahead so they had plenty of time to cool before I peeled them. I also made the cheese discs and crisp the pancetta the day before as well. All I had to do when I got to the office was assemble them.  Enjoy!

Recipe adapted via i am a food blog.

Jalapeno Popper Deviled Eggs
Makes 24 eggs
1 dozen eggs
3 slices of pancetta
¾ cup of shredded sharp cheddar cheese
3 tablespoons of cream cheese 
3 tablespoons of mayo (I used olive oil mayo)
2 jalapenos, diced
3 tablespoons of chopped green onions
Garlic Powder, salt and pepper to taste

1.       Add eggs to a medium size pot full of water and bring to a boil for 15 minutes.
2.       Drain the water and allow eggs to cool before peeling.
3.       While the eggs are cooling, crisp the pancetta in a non-stick skillet over medium heat until crispy. Once
cooked, arrange on a paper towel to soak up excess grease.
4.       Cut jalapenos down the middle and remove the seeds. Wipe out the skillet used for the pancetta and add the jalapenos, quickly searing on each side so they become softer. Remove from the pan once slightly cooked and dice.
5.       Using the same skillet, sprinkle shredded cheddar cheese in tiny disks and cook until crispy and golden.
6.       Gently remove the cheese discs from the skillet with a spatula and place on a paper towel to cool.
7.       Peel the hard boiled eggs and slice them each in half.
8.       Remove the yolks and place them in a medium size bowl. Mash until fine and crumbly.
9.       Add to the crumbled egg yolk mixture, mayo, cream cheese, chopped green onions, diced jalapenos, garlic powder, salt and pepper to taste.
10.   Fill the egg halves with the yolk mixture.      
11. Top each egg with a little crumbled pancetta and top with a disk of crispy cheese.


Monday, November 23, 2015

Etsy Art

Lately my husband and I have been on a mission to complete little decorating projects throughout the house that we’ve I’ve been putting off. We moved into our home two years ago, which also happened to be one month before our wedding. Given the timing of everything, it took us a little longer to get settled. I’ve been told that when you’re a homeowner the projects never end, and I’m beginning to see that. However, I blame the delayed projects and procrastination on my schedule of events the past few months.

We are finally putting our focus on an extra room in our house that I suppose could be considered a “sitting” room. I can’t wait to share more details and some before and after photos once it’s complete. We’ve also been working on some finishing touches to our living room, including, indoor plants and art for the walls. Our search for something to hang in the living room inspired this post. Etsy is a good place to search for art in my opinion. I sometimes find art intimidating, but I feel less overwhelmed when searching on Etsy for some reason. The good news, I think we found something we both agree on (more to come on that). During the search, I saw so many beautiful paintings that I would love to hang out my walls, watercolors in particular.  Here are a few of my favorites.

For the Low Country Lover: Low Country South Carolina Marsh

For a nursery (no I'm not insinuating anything): Safari Nursery Prints

For the love of Charleston: King Street Shops

For the book shelves: Palm Leaf Print

And because Paris is on my mind: Paris In Rain

Where do you shop for art?

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Recent Purchase: SUSU Handbag

Okay, so maybe I've been hiding under a rock or something, but I just recently discovered SUSU handbags. One Saturday afternoon I stopped in TJ Maxx to do a quick walk-through, and came across a pretty little bag. I always walk in that store, knowing that there is nothing that I necessarily need, but yet I somehow I do not leave empty handed. Once I laid eyes on this neutral colored leather bag, I knew it had to go home with me. 

It's the perfect color that will go with just about anything and it's a great size to take out at night. It's not very big, but it still has enough room to fit the essentials. I also love the fact that it can be worn with or without the strap. 

Right after I purchased the bag, I immediately got online and stalked the website, admiring all of their classically modern handbags. I love the chic and timeless design of the bags. I definitely wouldn't mind adding a few more to my closet. Below are some of my favorites. 


Monday, November 16, 2015

Thanksgiving Appetizers and Sides

With Thanksgiving right round the corner, I’m sure many of you are diligently planning menus and preparing to host family in your home or maybe even hit the road to celebrate elsewhere. The feasting begins for me at the office. We have a Thanksgiving lunch every year, which is pretty much a practice run for the real thing. My husband and I then spend actual Thanksgiving Day with his family. With that being said, around this time, I begin the search for something appetizing to bring to both tables.  Today I’ve rounded up few Thanksgiving inspired, mouth-watering recipes. Most of the recipes I discovered on Pinterest and they all look delicious! Check out the mouthwatering slideshow below.


Friday, November 13, 2015

New Feed Friday

Photo Cred: Justin Coit

Sharing a few fun links with you today, like this beautifully style bar cart pictured above. 

How cute is this Thanksgiving "favor"?

It's no surprise that Charleston made the list

We made this for dinner last week and it was so delicious! 

15 under-the-radar vacation destinations...already dreaming of my next trip.

This fun chair would definitely add some excitement to a room. 

Great wines to bring to a party..because sometimes you just need some suggestions. 

Happy Friday!

Follow along on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Bloglovin'


Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Kendra Scott Earrings

From the ladylike pastels to the bold statement pieces, Kendra Scott does it right. I've always been a fan her beautiful jewels, especially the earrings. The classic Elle earrings are what originally caught my attention, but lately I've been drawn to many of her other designs.  It's not just about the earrings though, I also love the philanthropic side of the brand. Through partnerships with individuals, parties can be hosted where 20% of the proceeds benefit the cause of your choice. Also, with the purchase of each of the Kendra Gives Back Charms, 20% of the proceeds go to The Seton Breast Care Center, MD Anderson Children's Cancer Hospital and the National Down Syndrome Congress. A beautiful jewelry line and one that gives back...a winning combination if you ask me!

I was recently gifted a pair of her Lori earrings, which is what inspired this post. I've been browsing the website and I keep discovering more and more pieces that I would love to add to my jewelry box. Today I'm sharing a few of my favorite earrings. I can't help but envision what a great addition some of these would make, completing the perfect holiday party look. Santa, if you're reading this, I won't be mad if there is a little yellow box under my tree. 

How stunning are these Elle earrings, shown in the color slate? Love them!

On another note, today is my birthday, which means I will probably be in a pizza coma later this evening. I'm mentioning this so at least you will understand why there may not be a blog post up tomorrow. 

Also, a heartfelt thanks to all of the brave and selfless Veterans out there!

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Life Lately: Eat, Drink, Socialize, Repeat

I can't believe that Thanksgiving is right around the corner. It seems like the past few weeks have flown by!  Since the day we returned from vacation, there has been something constantly going on and I feel like I just can't get caught up. I haven't been very consistent with blog posts lately, but I'm hoping to get back into my regular routine soon. I've been working longer hours, and honestly, by the time I get home, I'm reluctant to open up my computer again. I will get back in the groove, eventually. Now, on to a brief snapshot of what's been going on since we returned from Thailand. 

Whit and I took a road trip to Greenville, SC for the wedding of one of my college girlfriends. We got back from vacation on a Thursday evening and we were out the door again on Saturday. No rest for the weary. It was so great to be reunited with all of my college best friends. Most of us are separated by states now, but we realized that nothing between us has changed since college. 

The selfie sticks were a huge hit at the wedding!

I had all intentions of getting back to my cleaning eating habits after vacation, however this was disrupted by all of the catering we had at work the following week. I couldn't say no to one of my favorite food trucks, Platia. They seriously have some of the best gyros I've ever tasted. 

We had yet another food truck favorite of mine, Coastal Crust. Who can argue with wood fired pizza, cooked to order, right outside the office doors. 

We also had a delicious lunch catered by Zoës Kitchen. If you haven't had their steak kabobs or basil pest hummus, you're really missing out!

The Charleston Blog Society hosted an event at the Spectator Hotel, and by the time the night was over, I was ready to check-in. The rooms are so beautiful and inviting.

Image via the Spectator Hotel
The warm vibes given off by this 1920's inspired bar space is enough to make you want to cozy up on a stool and stick around for a while. 

Image via the Spectator Hotel
Oh, and did I mention that the cocktails are delicious and almost too pretty to drink...almost.

We spent a Sunday afternoon browsing around some of the best antique and home decorating stores Charleston has to offer. The Mt. Pleasant Mall has no shortage of  unique and fun finds. 

I can finally mark Red Orchid's China Bistro off of my list of restaurants to try. I've always heard great things about the place, and I will say, I was not disappointed. One of my favorite dishes was the pan fried pork dumplings that we ordered for the table. I could have eaten two plates of them. I think those may be my meal next time I go there. The black pepper beef and sesame chicken were also delicious. 

We finished the meal off with an amazing strawberry goat cheese ice cream. I will return for more!

And lastly, I have to give a huge shout out to my sweet, loving and thoughtful mother. She came to visit me this past weekend and we enjoyed some quality time together. I came home from work Monday evening to a table set for dinner, an entire baked turkey, hot out the oven, and fresh green beans. As if that wasn't enough, she also replanted all of my flowers on the front and back porch for the winter. I am truly blessed to have this kind hearted woman in my life. Love you mom!


Friday, November 6, 2015

News Feed Friday

Kitchen envy

The holidays will be here before we know it!

Not in the mood to go out for dinner? You're sure to find something that strikes your interest from this list of 29 Chinese recipes that are better than take-out. 

Learn how to master the art of making a batch of warm, freshly baked biscuits...the Southern way

Who knew craft paper could be so pretty?!

I would love to browse around this beautiful little shop and not just because it's Reese Witherspoon's. 

Need something morning motivation?  Here's How the Most Productive People Start Their Work Day

Cheers to the weekend! Follow along on Instagram, Facebook , Pinterest Bloglovin' 

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

In the Gym: Weekly Workouts

Getting back to a normal routine after a long vacation is a bit challenging on several accounts. In addition to the multiple loads of laundry, going back to work and actually cooking for myself, there comes the struggle of working out again. I normally attempt to make it to the gym at least four to five times a week. I will admit, I took full advantage of vacation and enjoyed that two week break from working out. Although, I did take a Muay Thai boxing class (more on that in an upcoming post) while I was there.

Why do I bring this up?  Well, it occurred to me that I’ve never really discussed anything in relation to my gym life. Considering I spend a decent amount of time there, I thought I would share a little about what I do to stay healthy. I’m not new to the gym world by any means. After cheerleading all throughout high school, I knew going off to college I had to keep the physical activity up to avoid the evil “freshman fifteen”. For the most part, I routinely went to the gym throughout my college days. When I made the move to Charleston, I found a gym, hired a personal trainer for the first time and loved it. I felt so motivated and I also learned a lot of new things that I could do on my own. I took a few classes but mainly did the training during the week and weights on my own. I later became bored with working out alone and decided to start attending classes regularly. Fast forward to now, I have a fun group of girls that makes that hour of physical activity so much more enjoyable. It’s so nice to have gym buddies to encourage you when needed. Here’s what a typical week looks like for me.


I start the week off with an hour long Synergy class, a group workout that consists of performing different exercises for one minute each at different stations. It’s a total body workout and a great way to start the week off.


Depending on how sore I am, I either take a spin class or a funk and weights class. Spin is pretty self-explanatory. Stationary bikes, a dark room and a lot of sweating, pretty much sums up the cardio filled hour. As for funk and weights, it’s basically an hour of heart raising cardio through the use of a step, light hand weights and the incorporation of a dance move or two.  The instructor is known for training hundreds of beauty pageant contests and really knows how to keep the class entertained. The class is different each week, which keeps things interesting.


I typically like to solely focus on cardio mid-week. The other classes I take are high intensity and sometimes a good run is needed. I’m not a huge fan of running, but I’ve come to realize that the more I do it, the easier it gets. So, on Wednesday, the girls and I rotate from the elliptical to the treadmill and sweat it out for an hour.


I step into the ring and break out the boxing gloves. We begin the class with a “warm-up” that makes me tired before we even start. I wasn’t sure if I was going to like boxing when I first took the class, but after a few sessions and actually learning the technique, I became a fan. I now have my own pair of gloves.


This is my rest day, unless I was unable to make it one day during the week, then, I will try to make it to the gym for a little cardio to make up for it.


You can either find me at the barre, ballet barre that is or at bikini boot camp. Barre focuses on small isometric movements that builds core strength, improves posture, and overall tightens and sculpts the body. It’s the complete opposite of the type of workout I get during the week, creating quite the challenge. When I’m not attending barre, I take a bikini boot camp class. This class varies from week to week and is a total body workout that incorporates cardio and strength training. 

I have to admit, it’s hard to drag myself out of bed on a Saturday morning, which is why it’s important to have those encouraging friends. As hard as it is to be disciplined, going to the gym makes me feel so much better. It’s amazing how I feel when I don’t work out versus when I do. Being physical, accompanied by a well-balanced diet, not only gives me energy but also puts me in a better mood and also helps me sleep soundly. So, if you’re considering joining a gym, don’t debate it any longer. Grab a friend, and chase after those results you're looking for!

Cute gym clothes and accessories are always a nice motivator as well. 



Monday, November 2, 2015

Weekend Recap: Halloween in Charleston

Great friends, spooky cocktails, delicious food and candy of course, pretty much sums up our weekend. I mentioned in my previous post how much I love Halloween, however this year I didn't have much time to prepare for it. After work on Friday, my husband and I both scrambled to pull together last minute costumes for a party we were going to. I happened to still have some pieces of a previous costume from college, and with a few additions, I turned into the tooth fairy! Whit based his costume around a hat he purchased in Thailand, and decided to be Raiden from Mortal Kombat. I have to admit, I had to google him to see exactly who he was. 

We arrived at the party and were greeted at the door with pumpkin pie shots and caramel apple sangria. Needless to say, we had a great time! I don't have many photos to show from the evening due to the catch up session with friends.

Saturday morning I was up bright and early for round two of the Halloween costumes, but this time it wasn't for a party. My girlfriends and I attend a bikini bootcamp class at our gym on Saturday's and since it was Halloween, of course costumes were a requirement. 

Three blind mice and Patty Mayo, sweating it out at the gym. It was so funny to see everyone working out in full costume. The rough gym session was followed by much needed cocktails and lunch with everyone at Triangle Char and Bar.  

The rest of my Saturday consisted of red wine, cooking dinner at home with the hubby, handing out candy to all of the adorable trick-or-treaters, and hanging out with this little ghost. Side note, we made a delicious pumpkin gnocchi, which I will be sharing the recipe for soon.

The best part about not having a wild and crazy Saturday night, is feeling great the next morning. Whit and I spent Sunday afternoon browsing around furniture and home shops in Mt. Pleasant looking for a few specific things.  If you haven't been to the Mt. Pleasant Mall, you're missing out. There are so many beautiful pieces of new and pre-owned furniture, antiques, art, jewelry and more. If I had a place for it, I would have left with this charming marble top piece. 

Our low-key afternoon was followed by brunch outside at Tavern and Table. It's still in the upper 70's here in Charleston so we've been enjoying every minute of it while we can. I hope everyone had a great Halloween Weekend!

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