Thursday, February 28, 2013

Lip Balm

I recently purchased FreshSugar Lip Treatment.  With 21 days of winter left to go, I still need a moisturizing lip balm.

Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment at Sephora
Sugar Lip Treatment is not a lipstick but more like a lip balm with a bit of color.  The balm has a light, citrusy scent and SPF 15 and full of all sorts of good things for your lips.  As you can see in the photo, it is light and transparent.  I love the way it makes my lips feel.  Very light and I love the scent.

Revlon Just Kissable Lip Balm Stain at Target
This Revlon product is about half the price of the Fresh product.  It is a balm and a stain.  The stain is deeper in color and not as transparent.  It does not feel quite as silky as the Fresh product but it has a much longer color staying power.   

Do you get frustrated by trying many lipsticks colors on the back of your hand, and then get home and try the lipstick and HATE IT!  I have a bag full of lipsticks I wore about twice.  

I read recently that you should try lipstick on the tips of your fingers as the color of your finger tips is truer to your lips than the back of your hand.   Makes sense actually.  Look at your finger tips compared to the back of your hand.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Genius Idea: Color + Plus Lighting Collection

Customize a lamp to your specifications?  You can do it on line at  Take a look at the color + plus lighting collection

Almost custom.  Choose a lamp base color from over 60 options.  The color selections are Pantone, Benjamin Moore and Sherwin Williams hues.  Your next choice is for a lamp base shape, two for table top and two floor models.  Then you can choose a crisp white shade or a one with color and pattern.  
A lamp with a basic white shade is $99.

Add a color/pattern shade and the price is $149.

Apothecary shape base and basic shade, $99.

Floor lamp/basic shade, $299.

Floor lamp, funky shade, $249, if basic shade, $149.
The look you choose can be very traditional or colorful and edgy.  The prices are very reasonable for the ability to customize a lamp to your taste.  

Check out the color + plus lighting collection by clicking here.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Meatless Monday: Mushroom, Leek, and Fontina Frittata

  I saw a recipe in the February issue of Bon Appetit for a frittata.  I like eggs.  I like breakfast for dinner.  Eggs are cheap.  So I gave it a try.
I haven't made a frittata for quite a while.  It is certainly an easy meal to pull together.  Serve hot or room temperature which means you can do ahead.  Leftovers are great for breakfast, lunch or dinner. 

This frittata features leeks, mushrooms and Fontina cheese.

Leeks have sand and grit in those tight layers so be sure to clean them.  Just slice and then separate the layers of leeks in cold water.  The sand will settle to the bottom and you'll have clean leeks.  Dry in a towel. 

In an oven proof, nonstick skillet, saute the leeks and mushrooms in a bit of olive oil until all liquid has evaporated.

Add the egg mixture which includes shredded Fontina and crème fraîche to the vegetables and cook on medium high heat for 5 minutes.  Top with remaining cheese and bake in 350 degree oven for 30 minutes or until set and puffed.

While the frittata is baking, you can make a salad or go about your business.  While a recipe is nice, no reason not to use ingredients you have on hand or find delicious.

Here is the recipe which serves 6.  

2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
2 medium leeks, whites and pale green part only, chopped
8 oz crimini mushrooms thinly sliced (baby bella)
12 large eggs
1/2 cup crème fraîche or sour cream
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped flat-lear parsley
3/4 cup shredded Fontina cheese, divided
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

Place a rack in upper third of oven; preheat to 350 degrees F.  Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a 10" nonstick ovenproof skillet over medium heat.  Add leeks; cook, stirring often until softened, about 5 minutes.  Add mushrooms and cook, stirring often, until softened and all liquid has evaporated, 8-10 minutes.

Meanwhile, whisk eggs, crème fraîche, and parsley in a large bowl; mix in 1/2 cup cheese.  Season with salt and pepper.

Increase the heat to medium-high and add remaining 1 tablespoon oil to the skillet.  Pour the egg mixture over the mushrooms, shaking the pan to evenly distribute mixture.  Cook the frittata, without stirring, until its edges begin to set, about 5 minutes.

Sprinkle remaining 1/4 cup cheese over eggs and transfer skillet to oven.  Bake frittata until golden brown and center is set, 25-30 minutes.  

Calories 300  Fat 21g  Fiber 1g

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Caramelized Onion, Prosciutto and Arugula Pizza

How about a new pizza combo?  

Sweet caramelized onions, salty prosciutto combine with chewy dried figs, walnuts and top it off with peppery arugula.
And the cheese?  Make it blue please.  Blue cheese pairs perfectly with walnuts and figs.
Buy pizza dough or make it yourself.  
The prosciutto is added about 3 minutes before the pizza is finished baking.  
Top with arugula just before you cut and serve. 
Hubby and I decided that the arugula needed to be "dressed" rather than just tossed on top.  So dress your arugula with a bit of oil and vinegar...just bit please.  I used walnut oil and it was magnificent.  
You can view the recipe from Coastal Living by clicking here.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

New Pantry Staples

I try to keep my pantry stocked so that I don't need to run to the grocery store each time I prepare dinner.  Having a variety of staples allows me to use leftovers creatively too.  While these products may not be new to consumers, they are new to me and I thought I'd share.

Nothing new about black beans but these beans are packaged in a pouch and are microwaveable.  The beans are in a seasoned sauce and have 130 calories per 1/2 cup serving, 2 servings per package.  I made fish tacos the other night and we had these beans on the side.  Great for a quick meal.
I was at the grocery store searching for corn tortillas to cut into strip and fry for topping my tortilla soup.  My gaze shifted to the right and I spied these packaged tortilla strips.  No decision here, frying was done for me.  The zip lock pouch keeps these fresh for the next time I want to use them.  
In our house it was an unwritten rule that Heinz was THE ketchup.  Hubby brought to my attention, Cook's Country ketchup taste test.  In the blind test, the Heinz Organic ketchup nudged slightly ahead of the Hunt's 100% Natural product as the best tasting ketchup.  BUT the Hunt's product is 1/2 the price of the Heinz Organic and therefore considered the best buy.  The non-fructose product has a very bright, fresh taste.  I'm a fan.  You can watch the video of the taste test by clicking here.  

What pantry staples do you like to keep around?  Any new ones?

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Spring Color

I was shopping for a trench coat this past weekend.  It was exhilarating to see pretty spring colors everywhere I looked.
According to the Pantone color people, these are the fashion colors for spring 2013.   I'm especially partial to poppy, violet and jade.

These bangles at Nordstrom are perfectly on trend.

Colorful jeans

7 For All Mankind skinny jeans / AG Adriano Goldschmied ag adriano goldschmied / 7 For All Mankind skinny jeans / AG Adriano Goldschmied super skinny jeans / Current/Elliott skinny jeans / Current/Elliott cropped jeans / CYCLE skinny fit jeans, $110 / Uniqlo skinny fit jeans / Mango slim fit jeans / COLOUR JEAN
It won't be hard to find colorful jeans.
I picked up this trench
and these khakis...but I would never wear those shoes.

What's your color for spring?

Monday, February 18, 2013

Monday Musings

Welcome back from what I hope was a peaceful weekend.  

Did you see T, the NY Times Style magazine on Sunday?  This issue heralds the redesigned magazine and features women's spring fashion.  I had great fun reading the articles and looking at ads.  Here are a few highlights. 
Style icon, Lee Radziwill, photographed here in her Paris apartment, is the centerpiece of the magazine.  Read the article here and then watch her video interview with Sofia Coppola here where she talks about Andy Warhol, Mick Jagger and Truman Capote among other things.
Tweaked versions of classics.

Print on Print

Choose a pattern and stick with it.  NY Times T magazine
How divine?  From an article about Mérida, Mexico.
I've begun to gather the paperwork for my 2012 taxes.  That got me to examine some of my statements, plans and contracts.  You may want to:
  • Check bank statement to see if you being charged fees that could be eliminated.  
  • Are you using all of your minutes on your phone plan or could you reduce the plan and save money.  
  • How about your internet and cable service?  Have you bundled these services (maybe with a land line?) to save money.
  • Review your insurance policies to make sure you have enough coverage but also not too much. (I had a friend who forgot to tell her insurance company that she sold one of her cars.  She had paid unnecessary insurance for 2 years!)
I called my cable provider to discuss downgrading my plan because I watch so little TV and never HBO or Starz.  Turns out I will save $20 a month and keep my same plan. The customer service person eliminated some charges, such as the DVR rental.  A simple phone call was all it took to save $240/year.
I think my email account was hacked so I changed the passwords for all of my accounts and changed the privacy setting on Facebook and other social media sites.  I entered the new passwords in my LockBox app because I'll never remember them.  

So, I was feeling safe and secure when I went to bed, knowing that my important information was safe again.  BUT I woke up and realized that hubby forgot to put the car in the garage the night before and the car was not locked.  When he opened the car door that morning, it was obvious someone had been in the car.  Luckily there was nothing of great importance and all that was missing were a few dollars stored in the console.  So much for feeling safe.  

Friday, February 15, 2013

Potterseed: Ceramics from South Africa

Potterseed is a new line of ceramics from two South African potteries.  I first became aware of these fabulous ceramics from a piece in Elle Decor.

Potterseed is the gorgeous new range developed by Kate of Mustardseed & Moonshine and Chris of The Potters Workshop.
One specializes in delicate ceramic flowers; the other makes dishes painted in vivid abstract patterns.
Individual pieces can be seen and purchased by clicking here, Casa Nova by Natalie.
I am draw to the vibrant color palette and the botanical detail.  The abstract motifs enhance the floral patterns and allow for a myriad of combinations of various pieces in the collection as seen in the photos.  One piece is not enough: patterns need to play off of one another.  

Have a colorful weekend.

Thursday, February 14, 2013


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