July 2014 Archive

What I Wore: Campy-Meets-Bling

As I previously mentioned, I’ll be adding a few components to the blog from time to time to give you a little more pizazz to read. Because I mean, I’m pretty sure everyone loves a little extra sparkle. I’ve been sharing recipes from time to time, and last week I gave a little home tour of completed parts of our cozy little home. Well, besides cooking, decorating, and working out, what else is on my list of loves? Cute clothes, duh.

After realizing that my personal Instagram feed is filled with fashion bloggers, foodies, and workout gurus, I decided it was time for me to share a little of that with you! So, alas, here’s the first of what I hope to become a regular edition of  “What I Wore.” Here, I’ll tell you where each piece of clothing is from…IN EVERY POST. You’re welcome. (:

This style has pretty much been a summer staple for me. I’ve changed up pieces, but the general campy-meets-bling has kind of been my cozy little go-to. Funny thing, most of these pieces were either gifted to me or stolen from Preston’s closet, oops! But, I’m all about dressing as cutely as possible using staple pieces already in my closet–er, or his.

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The shorts are actually an old pair of Preston’s jeans that I cut. I really wasn’t sure that day if he should feel insecure that I could fit into his jeans or I should…

Flannel Shirt: American Eagle (I swiped it from Preston’s closet, oops)

Wifey Tee: ILY Couture

Statement Necklace: TJMAXX (but inspired by this one from JCrew)

Gold Bangle Bracelets: Imagine Boutique

So, I hope you love this little addition to the blog! If you do, leave me some feedback so I know what I should keep doing, or not. Happy day, my little lovelies.

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Beth + Jacob

Something I’ve noticed more recently with my brides and grooms is the unwavering level of support they have surrounding them on their day. This isn’t to say that some I’ve photographed have not, just that lately, this particular thing has set a certain tone for the weddings we’ve been photographing. Beth and Jacob’s large wedding party was just that–full of life and love for the two of them. In fact, the entire wedding party kind of seemed like one big family. What can you say? That’s kind of how we do it here in the South…

Classic New Orleans, simple and clean details, and a little bling were some of my favorite parts of Beth and Jacob’s day. Everything was in the French Quarter and had such a homey New Orleans feel. To make it a little sweeter, the staff at Riverview Room were just phenomenal, to us as well as the guests.

Here are a few of the vendors and locations that helped make Beth’s vision come to life…

Getting Ready Location: Westin

Ceremony: St. Mary’s Catholic Church

Reception: Riverview Room

Florist: Beth’s Flowers

Hair/Makeup: Traci Woodard Salon

Video: Carriage Films

Photography: Kali Norton

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We had a large chance for rain that day, but graciously it held off and we were able to do all of the photos outside like we had originally planned. The skies were perfect, the light was perfect, and most importantly, Beth was perfect.
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Despite the head, Jacob was such a trooper in his many layers of stylish formal attire as he waited to hear his bride’s voice behind him.2014-07-23_0039 2014-07-23_00382014-07-23_00352014-07-23_00412014-07-23_0034

Beth and Jacob allowed me full discretion when it came to the creative nature of their photos, which really allowed us to utilize our photo time in the most productive way possible to create a curated collection. Additionally, Preston was unable to shoot this wedding with me due to military obligations, so I had the absolute PLEASURE of my ever-creative photog friend, Desiree shoot with me. It was a nice change of pace and her artistic capacity just blows my mind and speaks volumes to my soul. We worked, chatted, and bounced creative ideas off of each other all day long.
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St. Mary’s is just breathtaking…
2014-07-23_00232014-07-23_0052Riverview Room was such a perfect location for a truly New Orleans wedding. The views of the city from the balcony were perfection, especially for out of town guests. From the Mississippi River to the rooftops overlooking the Cathedral, it was all in viewing distance.

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Beth and Jacob, thank you for the pleasure of allowing us to peek our lens into the beginnings of your life together. I wish you nothing but health, love, and happiness. Forever.

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Featured In: Emmaline Bride

I’m so excited to announce that Laure & Ryan’s wedding is featured on Emmaline Bride today! Hop on over to their blog HERE to check it out.Screen Shot 2014-07-24 at 8.57.12 PM

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Healthy Homegrown Summer: Eggplant Caprese

One of my favorite things about summer is the abundance of homegrown produce. I do not claim to have one bit of a green thumb, but thanks to my dad and granddad’s gardens, along with our local produce stand, I’m always filled to the brim with the best, homegrown picks. This time of year especially breeds some ripe, juicy Creole tomatoes and tons of eggplant, so I figured I better start getting creative with some new ways to cook these babies up. My mother is quite talented in the kitchen, so if I’m being honest, she’s usually the base of where my recipes come from. I then usually just tweak to make it a little more of what I’m feeling.

Preston and I usually have cooking and movie date nights on the couch once a week or so, so that’s usually when I’m trying to whip up a new recipe. Generally something that pairs well with whatever wine we are feeling. In this case, I was feeling red wine, so obvs something healthy and italian came to mind! And in case you were wondering or need a new red suggestion, we paired Bogle Old Vine Zinfandel with this.

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Ingredients:

2-3 Large Eggplant (I like the fat kind with the seeds, but smaller would work too)

2 Creole Tomatoes

Fresh Mozerella (the kind you get whole, not shredded)

Basil Leaves (enough for 2-3 per slice)

Olive Oil (4-5 TBSP)

Spices: Rosemary, Oregano, Salt, Black Pepper, Garlic Powder

Pastry Brush (I’ll be real with you, I used a paint brush)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Start by slicing the eggplant about 1/4″ to 1/3″ thick. I generally go thicker for more veggie with each piece, but if you’re not worried about that, thinner is fine. Place Eggplant pieces close together, but not on top of each other on a greased baking sheet. In a small bowl, put 4 TBSP of olive oil and add seasonings listed above. I grind up fresh dried rosemary and oregano, but if you don’t have fresh, any will do. We are really just looking to make a good italian seasoning mix in the olive oil here. Add pepper, garlic powder, and just a dash of salt. Be sparing with salt as the eggplant absorbs it really easily. Mix them all together with the olive oil (it will appear like the dipping oil you get at restaurants to pair with bread). Using the paint brush, lightly coat each piece of eggplant with the olive oil mixture.

Next, very thinly slice tomatoes into circles. Like the eggplant, the size of the slice is really based on your personal love for tomato. Add tomato on top of each eggplant slice. Next, brush any remaining olive oil on top of the tomatoes. You can also sprinkle a tiny bit more of garlic powder, salt, rosemary, and black pepper if you desire on top of the tomatoes. Place in the oven at 400 degrees for 30-40 minutes. Lately, I’ve been having to cook them at about 38 minutes, but this is with my eggplant sliced pretty thick. So, if you slice thinner, start monitoring at 30 minutes (maybe even 25). You’re looking for the eggplant and tomato to begin to appear soft in the oven.

Once you take them out, it’s time to place the basil and mozzarella on top. I placed 2-3 leaves of basil on each large slice, but as little or as much as you want works. Repeat the same cutting and placing method with the mozzarella, eyeing it based on your desire for cheese here. You can go pretty light with the mozzarella, in my opinion, because it sort of spreads as it melts.

And voila! You’re done! As usual, my directions are vague because I eye things and guess as I’m cooking, but if you’re wanting to try something new for your summer harvest, I suggest giving this light Italian dish a try!

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Home Tour: Making My House a Home

I’ve been wanting to do a home tour post for about two years now, seeing as we moved in our new home almost two-and-a-half years ago. But, along with many other things I’ve learned about being a first-time home owner is that, making your house a home takes some TLC. Houses are bigger than apartments and putting a personal touch to each room takes time–and a waiting game with my bank account. For me, I knew I liked a clean Restoration Hardware-esque feel to my design style, but I also knew that I wanted to incorporate some personal and eclectic elements that were reminiscent of who we are and the things that we love. I also knew that while I love whites and creams, I still wanted the house to have a masculine chic-meets-mid-century feel to it.

Also, since I’m trying to gauge who’s reading this blog (or if it’s just my mom) and what kinds of things YOU like to read about, I’d love for you to leave a little comment! Especially if you have questions about where anything in this post is from. If there are any requests as to where I got certain things, I’ll do another post outlining those things specifically.

I still have many design plans floating around in my head to finish it off, but I did want to share with you our stand-still progress that will at least hold me over for a bit longer, until I can purchase a few finishing pieces. For example, the wall below is what will eventually be a full-blown gallery wall composed of art, hand-painted literary quotes, geekery, and a small bookshelf with our favorite classic novels–among a few other odds and end pieces I’ve got floating around in my brain. Nonetheless, for now, I love the beginnings of it so much that I was ready to share. It’s just very telling of some key interests that make up who we are.

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The hutch above actually normally has a TV on it, but someone is currently borrowing our TV and I was really digging the temporary setup and mid-century vibes inhabiting the blank space. Maybe the TV will find a new home when it returns in another space in our house…2014-07-17_0045

Cozy creams here, with a bit of an architectural vibe. This isn’t a full shot of my coffee table, but it’s one of my most favorite pieces in my home. It really brings together the space.2014-07-17_00482014-07-17_00382014-07-17_0046

My newest and most favorite addition to our living room is the white shag area rug above. There is just nothing that pulls together a room and gives it a nice cozy feeling like an appropriate area rug. 2014-07-17_0050

My dining area was a little more difficult to photograph, and as all home owners end up having regrets about certain choices in the building process, mine here would be the choice of lighting in my dining area. But, it does it’s job, so I really cannot complain. We chose more industrial-styled fixtures for the bar area over the high counters and that’s more of the feel I would choose for the dining area if I could go back in time. It also made getting this shot a little frustrating for my clean-cut tendencies. But, despite that, after adding the area rug under my table, my dining area feels complete to me.2014-07-17_0051 And just because I felt it appropriate to end this post with a little Star Wars for the super geek in my house…

I hope you loved a little peek into parts of my home!

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