Southern flair in the Northern air...

Southern flair in the Northern air...

Friday, February 27, 2015

Favorite Things Friday

I have to write this quickly because I'm trying to squeeze in House of Cards during her first nap. It's a little early for such a dark show but I'm too excited to wait. I thought I would do a little "Favorite Things Friday" since I have't written one in forever.  I'm sooo happy it is Friday and a sunny one at that with temperatures above freezing!! :D

Living in a small home in the city we have little space to spare.  These cylinder-like kleenex boxes are genius and can fit onto the smallest side table or shelf.  You can get them at Target!

This Honest shave oil is a spa in a 2.25oz bottle.  It's a wonderful remedy to winter skin problems and the aroma takes me away to my favorite spas every time. AND it's organic - ha! Moms, add it to your next Honest order!

It's no secret I'm a stickler for good, simple ingredients and these are great snacks with no additives.  They have the texture and convenience of the popular "puffs" but without the extra ingredients. Jenny found them at Whole Foods and I'll be back for more!

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Valentine's Day Wknd: The Inn at English Meadows

This year for Valentine's Day, Paul and I did something we hadn't done in over a year.  We went away for the weekend - just the two of us!  With Roswelle just shy of 11 months old, we were all ready.  My mom flew up and Roswelle was her Valentine this year :)  I made sure Roswelle had enough milk in the freezer, plenty of snacks for both of them, plenty of salt for MORE snow, and Paul and I headed north (there were tears on my part!)

We finally made it to The Inn at English Meadows which is the Bed & Breakfast we were headed to when my water broke almost a year ago!  The sweet, sweet owners David and Kate Parisi, remembered hearing our story and were so happy to finally have us stay! I can't speak highly enough of the Inn and our time in Kennebunkport, Maine.  It was just lovely, even in another snow storm, which says A LOT. 

This winter has been a tough one for me, I'll share more on that with you in another post.  It was nice to finally have some slow time with my valentine! Below are pictures from our weekend <3

{The FIRST bathroom in our suite.  I couldn't get enough of the space and cleanliness (and the beautiful floors!)}
{Heading into the second half of the Serenity Suite}

{our sitting area}

{having our own nespresso machine in our room made me quite happy}

{the second bathroom with a soaking tub and heated floors}

The rest of the Inn is impeccably decorated:

Kate, the inn keeper, is a wonderful cook/baker/host and it was fun to see what she came up with both mornings.

{a special treat for Valentine's day}

{one of the best things about being baby-free is the clean spaces all the time, including my placemat}

{cranberry scones}

{salmon scramble and potato hash}

{tea and treats were always readily available}

My favorite dish of Kate's was the baked pear with ricotta cheese and seeds.  

As I said above, it was a great weekend with my handsome hubs pictured below, him in a scarf really makes me swoon ;) 
{I love some snapchat pizazz}

Oh and we also went to a farm!:


Monday, January 26, 2015

Roswelle Gray: Life at 10 months!

Roswelle Gray turned 10 months last week!  I haven't written an update on her in a while.  She is a busy baby!  She has 2 bottom teeth, is wearing 12 month clothes, and is super 'expressive' ;)

Food: She still nurses 4 times a day, I have to admit I am SO excited to be near the finish line at 1 year!!! She eats two fried eggs in the morning.  She snacks on bananas, pears, avocado, celery w/ peanut butter, and organic steel-cut oats (from Trader Joes) with applesauce and cinnamon.  She loves to chew on dried apples form TJs - they are unsweetened and the perfect size for her little hands to hold on to - great for when we are out running errands! Her favorite green is broccoli.  
She will eat anything orange: steamed carrots/butternut squash/sweet potatoes. She isn't a huge fan of meat yet. I also make her "cookies" which is 1 cup of almond flour, 1 tbsp of coconut oil, 1 banana, & 1 egg.  Bake at 350 for 6-8 minutes.  Paul actually loves them too! 

Sleep: She is a great napper - typically naps from 8:30-10am and then 12:30-2pm.  Sometimes I will get a 30 minute nap out of her around 4pm if I'm really lucky. She is sleeping from 6:30-6:30am.  The past week she has been waking up at 4:30 or 5:30 but she will go right back down if we go in and hold her for a few minutes (I personally refuse to get up before 6am so I'll do anything to get her back down that early). 

Favorites: She LOVES to be read to.  Her favorite books are the touch and feel (pat the bunny).  The only time she will sit still with us is when she is drinking a bottle or we are reading to her.  She loves to be much that she will follow me around the kitchen and living room pulling at my legs nonstop.  Once she is up on my hip she is quiet as a mouse (probably hoping I don't notice she is there). I'm assuming this is a phase (fingers crossed!).  She will wave and will try imitate sounds we make with our mouth.  Andddd finally I hate to admit this but she loves Blues Clues. eek! One day when she was sick I turned it on and we watched it together snuggled up on the couch.  Now I tend to turn it on during her mid-morning snack when she is in her highchair.  She gets excited when she sees Blue the doggie and bounces to the songs.  I was planning to wait a little longer to let her watch TV but I've decided a 30 minutes every other day or so can't be toooo bad?! Oh and we love dancing around to the Disney channel on Pandora - it plays all the classics - check it out!! 

Now that January is almost over, Paul and I are looking forward to our first weekend away!  For Valentine's Day this year we are heading back to the B&B we were headed to when my water broke almost a year ago!  My mom is coming up and will have Roswelle all by herself for 2 days and 2 nights.  We are all equally excited :)  I'm also starting to pin/plan for Roswelle's first birthday.  I'm going to be baking this grain, dairy, and refined sugar FREE smash cake: 

OK, I gotta get out the door to get to Trader Joe's!  We are literally out of milk and eggs and road salt and with the blizzard headed or way I have to get busy.  I'm so excited to take Roswelle out in her snow suite!  Check us out on Instagram for pictures! (@saralaurenl)

OHHHH and she has her first swim class this afternoon!! :) :) :)

{this is RARE moment - her mouth is never closed!!! so silly}

{about to crawl off the chair}

{pat the bunny!}

{sweet profile}

{chatting with Lady}

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Tidy Spaces

{my coffee bar - I say "my" because I'm the only one drinking coffee in our house}

Hello out there!! It's been a while.  With traveling and hosting throughout the Holidays and a sick baby last week it's been tough to get back on the blogging train.  I have been putting it off because I didn't have the right pictures I wanted for a post I was thinking up or decided just to do something else with the free hour I had.  But this morning I decided to snap a few quick pictures and write.  

I consistently joke that I'm an official picker-upper.  I am CONSTANTLY picking up anything and everything...and I only have ONE baby...who doesn't even walk yet! (getting close!) I am one that needs order and control so the constant state of disarray sometimes gets to me.  To find some balance, I have set up a few spaces in my house that are consistently clean and put together, and if they get messed up it only takes seconds to get them back in order.  

{I make sure to keep this space clean and always have fresh flowers, it's a dependable place of order  in the early morning}

{Paul and I share one sink with a small countertop.  I've set myself up a small space for the items I use daily, it makes me feel a little put together even when I'm a general mess}

{I make it a priority to keep the countertops clear of clutter in this corner of our kitchen.  If something is sitting there, I simply move it to the other side of the stove.  May seem simple, but having one space that is clean does wonders when I'm cooking}

{and finally I love keeping our guest bedroom clean and tidy.  Sure I will park the stroller in there when I'm in a rush or sort laundry in there but for the most part the bed is made and the surfaces are clear.  It gets little traffic since it is on the bottom level of our house which makes keeping it a dependable clean space manageable}

Thursday, December 18, 2014

A Holiday Hot Chocolate Bar

Having people over during the next few days?  set up a hot chocolate bar!  When hosting, it's the little things that add up to a great night.  Obviously good company with lots of laughter and great conversation is most important but it's fun to make your place feels extra festive and warm this time of year.  I was gifted hot chocolate, a friend brought over biscotti when I had her over for dinner, and I have been making homemade marshmallows nonstop so I was able to throw this little tray together in mere minutes.  Whether you set it up in a littler corner or make it the center display on your table, a hot chocolate bar is sure to make people excited (either before or after all the sugar)!

{the is THE BEST hot chocolate.  I'm bringing it to GA with me!}

Monday, December 15, 2014

Homemade Peppermint Marshmallows

{all you need. target actually has everything, one and done!}

I posted on Instagram last week a preview of my homemade peppermint marshmallows.  I had seen them on another blog and decided it would be fun for the holidays.  I used Martha Stewart's recipe here: link (includes video!).  I have now made it 3 times and have it memorized; it is so simple!  Also since the recipe is just sugar, it cleans up well with water. The recipe is simple but I've included some tips I learned along the way.

As you know by now, I would normally never make something with these ingredients.  I refused to tell Paul what was in them and didn't even bother him to try them.  I am giving them out to friends and using them for a hot cocoa bar I'm putting together (more on that this week!).  I decided to let it go and just have fun with it.  I hope you do too! 

{a hand mixer would work, but a standing mixer is much easier}

{the recipe says to mix for 12 minutes, but I only mixed for 5-6 minutes or until thick & sticky}

{coat your spatula in pam or vegetable oil which will make spreading easier}

{I bought crushed peppermint candy at Target for the topping}

{let sit overnight for best results}

{line the pan with plastic wrap then use pam or oil to ensure the marshmallow will pop out easily}

{you can cut into square or get creative with small cookie cutters}s

{this sweet baby won't be getting close to these treats}

{sorry sweet pea}