The Hunt is Over

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I found an apartment and it’s perfect.  I felt a little like Goldie Locks during the whole endeavor.  One apartment was too small, the other too large, but this one was just right.  It doesn’t have a dishwasher or laundry in the unit and my kitchen is the size of a generously-spaced utility closet but I love every square-inch of the place.  My neighbors seem nice and the landlord is great too.  I can’t wait to get moved in and settled.

That being said, I have a little less than a month to pack.  Sorting life out into well-labeled boxes is always a daunting task but my apartment and winter weather are a more than motivating light at the end of the tunnel.

Have any helpful packing tips?  What was your first big move like?

I Made Some Soup…

Soup.

Soup.

Okay, I made a LOT of soup.  Around this time of year I always get what I call fall sick.  Living in Florida, I miss leaves, crisp air and, of course, fall flavors.  I think a really good butternut squash soup tastes like fall in a bowl so I decided to make some.  I opted to put some turkey bacon on top of it at the end but the recipe itself is vegan, gluten free and really easy meaning this is a food everyone can love.  It was so good I decided I would share.

What You Need to Make the Soup:

-1(2 1/2 to 3 lb) butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 2 inch chunks.  **Check your local grocery store to see if they have pre-cut butternut squash, I found some at Trader Joe’s.

-1 Tbsp of olive oil

-1 chopped onion

-1 large leek (only the pale green and white bits) sliced

-2 garlic cloves, minced

-3 cups vegetable broth

-1 1/2 tsp dried sage, crumbled

-1/4 tsp black pepper

-a pinch of cayenne

How to Make the Soup:

1) Place your squash in a steamer basket over about an inch of boiling water in a large saucepan.  Cover it up and cook it for about 15 minutes.

2) While your squash is steaming, heat up your oil in another saucepan on medium heat.  Add your onion, leek and garlic and let it cook while your stir until it’s soft.  It should only take about five minutes.

3) Add your squash and remaining ingredients to your onion, leek and garlic and bring it to a boil.  Once it’s boiling, reduce the heat, cover the pot and let it simmer until the squash is very soft.

4) Puree the soup in a food processor or blender in batches if needed.

I put mine into a covered bowl so that I could eat it throughout the week but if you want to eat it immediately and feel like it cooled off a little too much you can reheat it back in your saucepan.

Hope you enjoy!

I’m Throwing a Halloween Party

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I love Halloween and I kind of consider it the beginning of the holiday season.  When I was little, my mom used to go all out and decorate the entire house inside and out.  One year in particular comes to mind when she truly outdid herself; my room was so scary I couldn’t sleep in it– it was fantastic!

I decided to throw a Halloween party at the beginning of the month and I’ve gone a little overboard with my party planning.  I found some really great ones like this gruesome bathtub accent, this killer serving idea and this totally terrifying cocktail.  I can’t wait to get started!

What are your plans?  Any suggestions?  I want to know!

It’s Just a Thing I Do

http://goodmemory.tumblr.com/post/39654473297

I have certain things that I do every week that are really small but make me feel really good. They’re kind of like weekly mini traditions.  On Sundays I always wash my bed sheets, towels, and pajamas.  It’s all done in an hour and it feels pretty amazing when you get into bed at the end of the day.  Mondays are hard but, when you start it out in a bed that smells fresh and clean they start off on a better foot.

On Wednesdays I go over to my friends Kayla and Charlie’s house to watch Criminal Minds.  We sit and drink tea (if it’s been a good start to the week) or wine (if it’s been a not-so-good start to the week) and talk about nothing and everything during the commercials.  It might not be as productive of a ritual as my Sunday Linens habit but it’s something that feeds me.  It’s really nice to have something to look forward to mid-week.  It makes trudging through the weekly sludge a little bit easier.

They may be small but it’s like giving myself a hug.  Nothing special but it still makes me feel a little better.  Do you have any weekly traditions?

 

Photo Credit: http://goo.gl/SEFLFe

Better Late Than Never… Right?

 

Happy Friday

Happy Friday

 

Sorry I’m a little behind, I promise I didn’t forget about you!  How was everyone’s week?  Apartment hunting was beyond successful.  I managed to find a perfect little apartment on a perfect little street and  couldn’t be more pleased.  It’s about half the size of the apartment I’m in now so it’s going to require some major de-cluttering on my part.  Any of you have any suggestions for down sizing and reorganizing?  Anyways, here are some sharables to get your weekend started on the right foot.

Write a number one pop song, remember us when you’re famous?

Because Rembrandt

I picked this lip exfoliating set up at Sephora earlier this week and I’m kind of loving it.

I’m headed to go see this movie with my good friend Erin tonight.

Having a hard time deciding on a Halloween costume?  Want to confirm your costume’s originality? This new site from Google can help you out.

Did any of you read this article in The New York Times this past Sunday?  It’s sort of heartbreaking but also really lovely.  I can’t urge you enough to read it.

 

How do you plan to spend your 48-hours of freedom?

xo

Courtney

 

So I Went on a Road Trip

Wormsloe Plantation, Savannah, GA

Wormsloe Plantation, Savannah, GA

Last week I took a long weekend and went on a road trip with my good friend Leonora and her cousin Wilhelm.  Our plan was to see as many quirky antique malls as possible and the rest we were just going to figure out as we went along.  We still saw a ton of great antiques but, we seemed to somehow shift our focus to ghost tours, coffee shops and revisiting allegedly haunted houses discussed on the aforementioned ghost tours.  Don’t worry, we did some other stuff too.

Our first order of business was seeing the World’s Largest Peanut.  It was simultaneously weird, anticlimactic and totally awesome– all things that a giant, paper mache peanut located just off the interstate should be.DSC_0069

Our next stop was Atlanta.  Our hotel was in Atlanta but we actually spent most of our time in this super awesome town called Decatur.  Have you been?  I would live there in a heart beat.  It’s got great book stores, lots of history and outrageously good ice cream.  On the drive there I came across this old sign:DSC_0075And this book share:

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Before we (begrudgingly) left Decatur, we made one more stop at Kudzu Antiques.  If you get the chance to go, you absolutely have to.  Try to contain yourself as your go through the entire wall of kitschy salt and pepper shakers.

Kudzu Antiques

Kudzu Antiques 

After an hour or so, we began our four-hour journey to Savannah.  We listened to lots of Motown and made lots of stops for snacks.  Five hours later we made it to our mildly weird (but still great) retro hotel, The Thunderbird Inn.  They give you fresh popcorn and lemonade when you check in and leave you moonpies and RC Cola on your pillows– how great?!  Plus, while they don’t offer breakfast, they do provide Krispy Kreme doughnuts and coffee putting any continental breakfast to shame.

The Thunderbird Inn, Savannah, GA

The Thunderbird Inn, Savannah, GA

In between doughnuts and deciding which ghost tours would be best, we tooled around went to different shops.  I’ve been to Savannah a million times and The Paris Market is probably my favorite shop.  It’s got a little bakery in it and sells all kinds of great stuff that you don’t need but really want.

The Paris Market, Savannah, GA

The Paris Market, Savannah, GA

While I was sifting through all the trinkets, I discovered something amazing: there’s a basement level.  All this time I’ve only been seeing half of the market.  It was pretty cool…

DSC_0199 They were completely decked out for halloween.

We finished up our weekend at the Wormsloe Plantation (first picture of the post).  Apparently, it’s the most photographed site in Savannah.  This is completely understandable the moment you start the mile long drive under canopied by live oaks dripping with Spanish moss.

The trip was a blast but it was nice to get home.  Tell me about your best road trip!

Have You Heard of LOLA?

LOLA box

LOLA box

They’re this really cool tampon company founded by two friends that met in college.  You know polyester?  The stuff that John Travolta’s entire Saturday Night Fever wardrobe was made out of?  Well that’s also what a lot of tampons are made out of… along with a bunch of other synthetic nonsense.  LOLA offers 100% natural and biodegradable cotton tampons which sounds a whole lot better to me.  Better yet, you get to customize your box of 18 of varying sizes and have them delivered right to your door.

After reading about them online and visiting their website a couple of times I was sold.  You get a great deal on your first two boxes and you can set it up on auto pay and choose how often and when they’re delivered.  Know what that means?  No more manic midnight runs to your preferred drug store because you realize you’re out.

Hip hip hooray!

If You Haven’t Done This yet You Should

Party of 1

Party of 1

I’m talking about going to the movies alone. I went this weekend the night before I took off for Boston and it was really nice. I went to go see the new Tom Hanks movie (I highly recommend it).   There was this crazy moment when I first walked in to the theatre and there was absolutely no one in it. It was library-level quiet and I was hoping that I would get the theatre to myself but, alas, three other solo moviegoers crashed my private viewing.

Nonetheless, it really felt like a treat. It kind of feels like you’re taking yourself on a date except you can go in sweatpants and you don’t have to share the popcorn.  If you haven’t gone to see a movie by yourself I absolutely insist that you do. I do it pretty regularly and I enjoy it every single time. I’m a big proponent of random acts of self-care.

What do you do to show yourself a little TLC?

Hello My Weekend Warriors

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Photography by Norman Parkinson

[Insert Rebecca Blackwood Lyrics here]  Happy Friday everyone!  What are your plans?  I’m heading up to Boston to apartment hunt, wish me luck!  I’m hoping to find a place that has a decent amount of space and somewhere close by to park my car.  It would be an added bonus if the place had some character and maybe didn’t have wallpaper that was hung prior to my birth.  Hopefully those ambitions aren’t too lofty.  Here are some fun things I found over the week that I thought I’d share.

Bust this out at your next shin dig for some serious remember-when moments

Some of these articles in New York Magazine are too funny and great to pass up

The most perfect fall shoes.

I have a never ending list of books I want to read but this just got added to the list.

I got one of these in my Birch Box this month and I don’t think I’ll ever go without it again.  It’s perfect for after the gym, a plane ride, a road trip, whenever you’re nervous and about a million other things.

Would you ever do this?

For all my fellow 30 Rock fans, I couldn’t stop laughing at this quiz.

What are you getting into this weekend?

Have a lovely one.

xo Courtney