Paris Photo Shoot

PPRJ-01bOne of my most favorite memories from our Europe trip is the photo shoot we had in Paris. There is truly no better souvenir than wonderful photos, so when my friend Lauren told me about Stacy Reeves, the Texan photographer behind L’Amour de Paris, I knew I wanted to book a mini-session with her during our visit. It may have been one of the best decisions I made all year; when I got the photos back from Stacy, my jaw dropped. That girl knows what she is doing, no doubt about it. She was so much fun to be with, and our photos turned out so beautifully – I already have many plans to use them in frames and books, and we chose two to use in our Christmas card. The session itself was short and it took place at an outlook near the Eiffel Tower early in the morning, which left us with the whole day to play. Stacy gave us fun tips about things to do and places to eat (Breizh Café, one of her recommendations, became a favorite of ours), and overall our experience with her just took our trip to the next level. We are going to cherish these photos forever and ever. Thank you, Stacy!

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All images credited to the super talented Stacy Reeves of L’Amour de Paris

We’re Going to Europe!

Processed with VSCOcam with m5 presetJames & I have been busily curating our packing lists and checking them twice because in just a few short weeks, we’re heading to Europe! We’ll be gone for 14 luscious days and we’ll be exploring Iceland, Paris, Florence, and Rome. We have so many fun plans in store (like massages at the Blue Lagoon, a Northern Lights tour, a photo shoot in Paris, and noshing on pizza here), which we’ll balance out with plenty of days filled with absolutely no plans, armed only with the intention to wander around, pop into any store/café/watering hole that delights us, and enjoy our time together in Europe. I absolutely cannot wait!

Passport via Gigi New York

Hotel La Tosca

header_1-3Recently James and I have been daydreaming about taking a trip to Europe next year as a celebration of our first anniversary and of our 30th birthdays (James hits the 3-0 mark in a few weeks and it’s my turn next December). There are so many gorgeous places to see, but for our inaugural trip to Europe (there will be many more, I promise!) we each picked a place that we’d like to return to with one another in tow. For me, that’s France. I want to spend time in Paris, reliving the amazing memories that Kyla, Laura, Lauren, and I made on our trip three years ago (read about it here, here, and here), and then I want to go to southern France, exploring a place I’ve never been before. All the while I want to eat cheese and pain au chocolat and steak frites, each meal paired with an ice-cold flute of Champagne.

header_1-2James wants to travel around Italy. He studied abroad in Florence in college, and he wants to return there to show me his old stomping grounds. I love this idea. We both also love the idea of exploring Italy further, perhaps traveling to Capri and finding ourselves snuggled up at the gorgeous Hotel La Tosca. This is a gem that I found on my friend Natalie’s blog and I swooned over the photos the moment I saw them. Aren’t they gorgeous? If I got to stay at the Hotel La Tosca, I may never come back…

3_d.20140919130414There are so many plans to consider (and dollars to set aside!) to make this daydream become a reality but the dreaming is half the fun, right?

Images via Hotel La Tosca & Capri.net

Happy Fourth of July!

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Fourth of July is here, hip, hip, hooray! The Fourth of July is my favorite holiday – kind of surprising, right? I absolutely love Christmas and Thanksgiving (and my birthday, too, if that counts) but the Fourth of July encompasses so many of my favorite things (fireworks, barbecues, ice-cold margaritas, time with family and friends, afternoons on the water, American pride) during my very favorite season (sweet, sweet summertime). This year is especially great because Fourth of July lands on a Friday, giving us three whole days to celebrate America’s independence. Since I’m not near an ocean or a lake this year (and since I think that spending the Fourth near water is 100% required), I plan to pool-hop my way through Dallas. Laura and I are going to soak up the sun at FOE tomorrow after meeting for tacos, and we’ll reconvene on Saturday at Kyla’s pool, where I’m planning to make this guacamole and these margaritas. Fun in the sun awaits indeed, folks. Have an amazing holiday weekend!

P.S. Just in case you’re in a blog-reading mood, here are some fun links from around the web:

I made this  raspberry granola today and it turned out so deliciously! I think that next time I would put the granola on two baking sheets instead of one – I like my granola crispy enough to withstand some almond milk or yogurt, and I think some of mine didn’t get cooked thoroughly enough – but I’m pleased with the result nonetheless.

Laura found this great deal on Gilt Groupe for Weekend Coffee (remember how I said I’ve been wanting to go there?) and a group of us united forces and signed up for a private coffee brewing class – so excited for that!

I love using Airbnb when I travel (I’ve used it in Palm Springs, New York & Austin) and I’ve always wanted to utilize the service during a trip abroad. Jordan Ferney’s post on booking an Airbnb accommodation in Paris is bookmark-worthy – I am definitely using this on my next trip to France!

Not that I really need any more reasons to love tacos, but this simple little recipe (of the breakfast variety) is another one to add to the list.

Speaking of food, I love Fourth of July treats so much that I wrote a blog post about it. And now I’m craving baked beans & broccoli slaw in a major way.

Photo via Coffee in the Mountains

Week & End

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Weekend, weekend, weekend! What are you up to? This week was full of lots of goodness, including several girly evenings – dinner with a dear college friend on Tuesday, our monthly Girls Night In at Korena’s on Wednesday (which included takeout Thai food, a late-night Pinkberry run & wine on the rooftop), and a going-away party for our sweet friend, Karen, at HG Suply Co. last night. This weekend holds so much promise because there’s literally nothing on our calendar. Lots of sunshine, food, friends, reading, puppy loving, and rest will be involved, that’s for sure.

Enjoy some great links from around the web!

My newest post on Darling Magazine’s blog is up! Need inspiration for a Father’s Day gift? Look no further than this fun guide that I put together. P.S. Word on the street is that Darling’s quarterly print publication is now being sold at Nordstrom – too cool!

I’m not a huge shopper but I have spurts where I can’t stop browsing the interwebs for cute pieces to add to my wardrobe. Though I am coveting these sandals in a major way, these Target shoes would be so much kinder for my wallet (and right now, they’re buy one, get one half off!). Speaking of deals, Korena wore this lion smock dress to Girls Night In and I want it so bad (it looked amazing and comfy on her, win-win). It’s even 25% off! Is that a sign?

I feel ridiculous even mentioning this because if you are a person living in America you already know, but I am so excited that The Fault in Our Stars comes out today. My book club gals and I read John Green’s incredibly riveting novel and we’re waiting for the dust to settle before heading out to see the movie in a couple of weeks (we’ll be having cocktails here first). My best gal, Becca, got a chance to see a screening in Nashville this week and she said that she was glad to have read this review ahead of time – it set her expectations in just the right place because, after all, it can be a bit nerve-wracking to a see a movie about a book you truly love. Will it live up to the hype? Stay tuned.

This recipe is a really creative (and healthy) twist on one of my favorite weeknight meals, the burrito bowl.

I got to meet with my friend Lauren this week to dream up some ways to partner together with Touch A Life, and we got sidetracked and started talking about a ridiculously amazing photo shoot she got to do in Paris this spring. These images are jaw-dropping (you can see them herehere) and I am going to follow Lauren’s lead and book a shoot as a treat/souvenir for myself the next time I’m in Paris (whenever that may be…le sigh). Of course, I am also going to be copying the tulle look whenever this mythical trip to Paris occurs (I also love LBK’s honesty – like, “no, I don’t own this outfit & actually it was basically stapled together.” So good.)

Image via designlovefest