monday inspiration


A bit of inspiration for your spring (and maybe rainy) Monday.


weekend style: gold and coral


I’ve been loving crisp outfits like this lately. Bright coral, fresh white jeans and a backdrop of neutrals and gold are perfect for the weekend!

I hope your Saturday is bright and happy!

droolworthy: shabby apple

I don’t know how I’m going to write this post without maxing out my credit card.

Shabby Apple is one of my favorite apparel stores. Its vintage-but-new, sweet-but-sexy, crisp-but-simple items are just what I lust after. I try to limit myself as much as I can but who can resist such a droolworthy store? Everywhere I turn, I find something I love!

These are just a few of the items I’ve been drooling over lately.


(please note that some items are not still available)

grammy’s chocolate cookies

You guys, I don’t know what my problem is.

I find good recipes. I gather all the ingredients. I follow (what I think are) the instructions. I even take the necessary finger swipe to taste the concoction.

But for the life of me, I just can’t bake.

I don’t know what it is. I think I’m too impatient to follow a recipe, choosing instead to stuff sugar in my mouth and hear the accolades of my adoring munchers. It’s not like I’m one of those people who can only cook, either. I can’t do either. I have an older sister who takes care of much of the cooking in the house so it’s not like I’ve been forced to be a chef. I really should probably just stay out of the kitchen but I’m too much of a foodie to do so.

Which is why I gave it another go tonight. I peeled open Martha Stewart’s Cookies and turned to this:

“Grammy’s Chocolate Cookies: A hefty dose of cocoa powder makes these old-fashioned drop cookies perfect for fans of dark chocolate. The recipe is so simple, it’s a natural for preparing with children; they especially love forming the dough into balls and rolling them in sanding sugar.”

Dark chocolate? You got me. Children can do this? I’m starting to get intimated.

It turned out fine, though. I mean, that is after my sister had to come to my rescue with a bigger bowl (butter was flying everywhere) and my mother had to explain how to sift. Oh, and did I mention that I always fail to remember that dry ingredients stay separate from the liquid ones? Oh well. This is a learning experience, right?

What is probably most amazing about these cookies, besides the rich, dark chocolate flavor, is that they stood up to the test of Baker Lauren. Oh, and they’re pretty much cookies disguised as brownies disguised as cookies. I’m sure they will taste even more divine when you make them!

Grammy’s Chocolate Cookies – as written in Martha Stewart’s Cookies

2 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3/4 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups (2 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
sanding sugar, for rolling

1. Sift together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt into a bowl.

2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add eggs and vanilla, and beat to combine. Reduce speed to low, and gradually add flour mixture; beat to combine. Form dough into a flattened disk, wrap with plastic wrap, and chill until firm, about 1 hour.


3. Preheat oven to 350*F. Shape dough into 1 1/4-inch balls. Roll each ball in sanding sugar. Place on baking sheets lined with parchment paper, about 1 1/2 inches apart. Bake until set, 10 to 12 minutes, rotating halfway through. Transfer to a rack to cool for 5 minutes. Transfer cookies from baking sheet to wire rack. Cookies can be stored between layers of parchment in an airtight container at room temperature up to 1 week.