Wednesday, January 17, 2018

2018


Hello everyone! How can we already be halfway through January? It just blows my mind.

Anyways, I wanted to do an update and let you all know what you can expect on the blog throughout the year! I have a few new year's resolutions that I think are going to guide the posts on my blog so let's just dive in:


1) Read 15 books -
I say I am going to read more every.single.year. and yet I always seem to choose TV over reading. I'm not comfortable with that so I decided to hit this year hard! I am already done 4 books and I feel great so far. I don't think that book reviews are my style so you won't find them on here but you can expect to see some quotes, updates on my progress, and my thoughts on certain themes and lessons I am learning from the books.

2) Use Duolingo - When I lived in Chicago I would use the Duolingo app to keep Italian fresh in my mind but stopped using it after moving back to Pittsburgh. I am trying to get it back in my daily routine and am having fun so far! It's awesome to see how much I remember but also makes me miss Rome so much! I might do some throwback Rome posts on here this year....it has been 5 YEARS since I studied in beautiful, marvelous Roma!

3) Try 15 new recipes - Since I last blogged, I have become vegetarian. It has been over 6 months and so far so good! I have had some struggles and definitely learned a lot about what I eat. I can't wait to share this journey with you! Anyways, back to the recipes! I have always liked to cook and try new things in the kitchen, but have found myself making the same few dishes over and over again. I really want to push myself to make different dishes, with ingredients I may not be used to, using techniques I haven't tried before....I will share my failures and successes on here throughout the year!

4) Lose weight - This is of course on here....but I want to come at it in a different way. I am going to be sharing my thoughts on how I got to the point I am at, where I want to go, how I want to get there, and most importantly I want to learn to love myself at any weight (age, etc). This means more OOTD posts, which I have been a little too nervous to take and post.

5) Live my truth - I am embarrassed for typing that weird phrase, but I don't know how to describe my last resolution any other way. There is so much going on in my life right now and  in the world as a whole and I want to share my thoughts with you. I'm not promising any hard hitting articles but I want to have a place where I can get my thoughts out and make sense of them...and hopefully learn from and have meaningful conversations with my followers.

That's all for now. Tune back in next week for another update! 


Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Apartment Picks

Hello there!

Isn't it crazy how much longer a holiday weekend feels than a normal weekend? We only get an extra day and yet it seems like you leave work on Friday and have so much more time to get things done, go out, or just relax.

Anyways, as some of you probably already know, I will be moving in August! As much as I love living with my family, the thought of having my own space and decorating it just makes me giddy. I have been Pinteresting up a storm and wanted to share with you guys some of my favorite ideas for my soon-to-be new space:



As you can tell from the photos above, I want the space to be neutral with pops of color, especially my bedroom. I want most of my room to be creamed colored so that the printed cream and orange rug and blue dresser stand out. Textures have definitely help me keep my neutral palette for my room. I am already working the DIY Fibre Art for behind my bed from A Beautiful Mess Blog and it looks AMAZING! The color is bland but with the tassels and the weaved puffy yarn, it is just beautiful. 

For the living room, my roommate and I are going to have a gallery wall but with only art from TV shows or movies that we love! I have my eye on the Trainspotting poster and the Gilmore Girls art. Both just seem to capture the essence of the stories...I know that sounds lame but it really is true. 

The other main element we are focusing on is the bar cart. It's really strange because I don't drink very much, but bar carts are just too cool not have one! We've already got some items from garage sales and vintage shops but I can't wait for it to come all together. 

I'll keep you all updated on the progress. Some more DIYs are definitely coming! 


Thursday, May 25, 2017

Outfit of the day!!

(Shirt: Christmas Gift Jeans: h&m Belt: Forever 21 Shoes: Khol's Purse: Victoria's Secret)

(Foundation: Clinique Acne Solutions Eye Shadow:  Colourpop Might Be Highlighter Lipstick: Colourpop Thursday Matte Highlighter: Marc Jacobs Glistening Illuminator Eyebrow Pencil: Elf Mascara: Mary Kay Ultimate Mascara)




Monday, May 22, 2017

Good Eating: Pizzuvio

Happy Monday! 

Today I've packed a healthy goat cheese salad for lunch, but I am still dreaming of this pizza from Pizzuvio in Downtown Pittsburgh. Having studied abroad in Rome, I am always searching for food as good and authentically Italian as what I ate during that semester. This place seriously comes close! 


First, the location of Pizzuvio is prime. It's right in the middle of town. The location isn't the only thing this place has going for it either, the atmosphere is awesome! The flooring is part hardwood and part tile work...very Instagram-worthy! The whole place has a trendy feel that isn't too cramped. 

My co-workers and I decided we were going to split a few pizzas and fritti so that we could try a lot of the menu. We ended up getting a prosciutto & arugula pizza, a quattro formaggi, and a Romano. My personal favorite was the prosciutto and arugula! It was so fresh and light. Perfect for lunch. The crust was thin, crispy, and chewy all at the same time. I am drooling just thinking about it! The Romano was a close second. It had meatballs, ricotta, and mozzarella. The ricotta made it so creamy and filling. For those who aren't adventurous, the quattro formaggi is great, just a little bland for my taste. 


As I said before, we went a little crazy and also got some fritti to try out. First, I tried the suppli telefono, which is a rice ball with mozzarella and tomato sauce (an old favorite of mine from Rome). It was just as I remembered and it really shocked me how right they got it! Second, I tried out the panzerotto, which is a croquette of potato, mozzarella, and Romano. This one wasn't my favorite, it was pretty bland and not very satisfying. Next time, I am going to skip the panzerotto and get two of frittatina! A frittatina is a croquette of bucatini, bechamel, ham, and parmigiano. IT IS HEAVEN. Imagine mac n' cheese with ham all put inside a funnel cake...I told you, heaven on earth.  Although this dish was amazing, I will say that I never saw anything like it from my experience in Italy. Haha, it seemed very American but also very delicious! 



I can't wait to go back to this place and try even more of their pizzas out! Check out their menu and let me know which you think sounds the best!

Hope xx 


Wednesday, January 18, 2017

London Budget:

Happy Wednesday!

Since I can't get London off my mind, I figured we could at least switch gears a bit from the places planned for my trip and focus on my budget instead.


Keep in mind as you read, we will be in London for 7 days and will have a direct flight from New York to London.

Costs: 
Heathrow Express:                                                             £28
Weekly Tube Pass (Zones 1-2):                                         £33
Breakfasts (7 breakfasts in England):                                £10/per breakfast (7)
Lunches (7 lunches in England):                                       £15/per lunch (7)
Dinners (8 dinners in England):                                        £20/per dinner (8)
Transport to Stow-on-the-Wold:                                       £30
St. Paul's Cathedral Tour:                                                 £18
Airport Food:                                                                    £20
Spend Money:                                                                  £225

Total:                                                                                £694 approx. $1,041 (with a 1.5 exchange) 
                                                                                          **keep in mind that the exchange rate is                                                                                                    very low right now so the price could drop                                                                                                 below $950 if things stay as is until March.


I will now give you a better understanding of what the costs include and why we chose to include them in our budget. Here's a breakdown: 
  • To take full advantage of our night in London, my friends and I are going to opt to take the Heathrow Express. It will cut our transport time down and allow us to get to our Airbnb in time to grab a pub dinner. 
    • A cheaper option would be to take the tube into the city and then transfer at Victoria Station or Kings Cross. 
    • A more expensive option would be to take a cab from the airport into the city 
  • Rather than put so much money on our Oyster cards, my friends and I have opted to buy a weekly unlimited pass for zones 1 and 2. This will make planning easier. We don't have to limit our tube trips and we can just see what the weather is like and how tired we are. We are going to avoid cabs and Ubers. This will be much more feasible with the night tubes running. 
  • A £10 breakfast in London can mean a lot of things. If you are really hungry, you can go to most pubs in London and get a full English breakfast with tea or coffee for £10. You could also get a coffee and pastry at Starbucks if you want a lighter meal. If you want to go even cheaper, you can just stock up on cereal and milk from Tesco or Sainsburys
  • For lunches, there are too many choices to even name. Some of my favorites are sushi from Wasabi which will cost anywhere from £7-14. You can also go to a sit down and get a lunch special for around £15. Once again, if you want to be cheaper than £15, you can head to a grocery store. Tesco has a meal deal for £3 that includes a sandwich, side dish like chips, and a drink. 
  • £20 for dinner might seem like not enough but don't forget we budgeted spend money that could be used for extra alcohol. However, if you would like just one drink then this budget should be correct. Also keep in mind that you probably will want a cheeky Nandos one day for dinner. You can get a chicken pita with two sides for £8.95. The extra cash you save that day can go towards another dinner at a pricer spot like the Coppa Club
  • Transport for Stow-on-the-Wold is budgeted for £30. This price should allow you to go to most day trip locations outside of London. The national rail is great and pretty affordable plus there is a great Megabus system out of Victoria Coach Station. Some other fantastic day trips include: Brighton Beach, Bristol, Cardiff, Oxford, and Cambridge. 
  • Now for the £18 budgeted St. Paul's Cathedral Tour, you could use that for the view of your choice. You can do the London Eye for £21, The Shard is £35, Tower Bridge for £11, etc. We chose St. Paul's because it will have great view of East London. Plus, we will get to see the amazing architecture inside the cathedral.
  • Airport food is pretty self explanatory but this budget will include a quick meal with a drink or a coffee and snack. You have to remember that they will feed you on the plane too! 
  • Spend money was tricky for me. I wasn't sure how much to budget because I will be limited to one suitcase and a carryon to fit everything into. However, I also included coffees, tea, and sweets into this spend. I believe that around  £50 will be enough for all of those extra snacks and £175 will be for souvenirs. 

Friday, January 13, 2017

London Spots: Part 2


(photos from top left: Pinterest, LovelytravelsblogLovelytravelsblog, Pinterest) 

I've officially started a countdown! I am getting a little ahead of myself but prepping for a trip is half the fun! Don't ya think?...Just me? Ah, well!

Here are a few more of the spots that I am most excited about experiencing on our trip: (who am I kidding...I am jazzed about every single part of this trip. Riding the tube. Waiting in line for coffee. The "litter" bins in Regents Park...everything!)  
  1. St. Dunstan in the East- This spot is an old church 
  2. Cahoots- This bar is underground and looks like it came straight of the 1940s (picture above)! It has Cahoots Newspapers and is modeled like an old Underground station! I can't wait to try this place out and hear some jazz and swing music! 
  3. Monmouth Coffee- How could I go to London and not check out the top coffee shops? London is where I really began to enjoy coffee. I would get flat whites from Costa Coffee before I even knew what a flat white was. My friends and I are going to check out the Covent Garden location (pictured above) bright and early one day. I can already picture my Instagram feed with the classic shot of this place. 
  4.  Holland Park- This is an old favorite of mine! I remember the first time I went, I was all alone and it seemed like I had the place to myself. Flowers cover the place. It reminds of what the Secret Garden would look like. 
This list could go on and on but I am going to limit myself...for now! Check back for more details on my London trip! 


Monday, January 9, 2017

Outfit of the day!!

Outfit
Dress: h&m (sale)
Tights: Forever 21
Shoes: Payless 
Earrings: Francesca's 

Makeup
Eye Primer: NYX proof it! 
Eyeshadow: 
Tarteist - dominate
Color Tattoo Metal - Inked in Pink
NYX - Copenhagen
Mascara: Too Faced Better Than Sex
Lipstick: Kylie Cosmetics - Maliboo  
Eyebrows: Wet n' Wild crayon & Essence Make Me Brow
Blush: Clinique Mocha Pink