Prana #7daystretch

   
    
 Pants: Prana | Hoodie: American Eagle | Shoes: New Balance | Hat: Target 

Having spent all summer interning, I had very few opportunities to take time off and do something fun. I remember last summer being full of road trips and adventures, and I’m kind of sad I missed out on that this year. But this summer was full of trips to the beach, walks around the lakes and hang outs with friends. And while I’m not as adventurous as my husband, who went on a hiking trip up north, I like to stick to the regional trails, I might just have to end this summer with a trip to a place I’ve never been before. And now I have my new Prana pants to do it in! 

4 years

  
Sam and I got married 4 years ago today! I still can’t believe it’s been this long. And maybe compared to other marriages 4 years isn’t that long, we are still amazed at how far we’ve come along.   

We had a great time last night at the Walker Art Center’s Pop Remix, the terrace was open and we got to see a fashion show featuring Emma Berg’s new line, as well as Christian Joy Costumes collection!   

   
  

Afterwards we ended up going to the  Uptown diner for burgers and malts! 

Happy Friday everyone! Have an awesome weekend! 

Knee Slit Black Jeans + Zombie Apocalypse

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Weirdest dream last night, zombie apocalypse in Russia, and I somehow ended up in it. I had to pack my clothes, and didn’t have enough room in the suitcases, and didn’t have enough suitcases to begin with. Sam and I got separated and I was with my family, my grandma was alive, and my dad was around too (so weird!), and we went to an old settlement of stone huts on a river. And the whole thing was weird. All I remember was falling asleep (in my dream), looking at the shooting stars and hoping to see Sam again, which I did, this morning.

I am telling you some days my dreams are way too crazy even for me.

But in all honesty if I were to take the zombies down, I’d probably wear this outfit.

Happy Monday!

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Jeans: Target, Shoes: Forever 21, Tank: H&M, Kimono: Target

#BTS Denim Flare

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With school being a month away, I am already starting to think about fall style. And to be honest denim is my go to for pretty much everything, especially college related. I have stayed in the “skinnies” zone for so long, that these flares surprised even my husband.

They are denim flare jeans from Target, and so incredibly comfortable! They remind me of a pair I used to have in high school back in Russia.

The hem finish is my favorite part about this pair, it’s so detailed and unique, making this pair look anything but $29.99.

I styled this pair with a striped Free People Crop top, Target heels (because flares look best with heels!!!), HauteLook necklace and Free People reversible tote.

How do you style denim flare? Do you ware flare jeans at all?

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Vintage State of Mind

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As you know I’ve done shoots for Alacloth (a vintage Etsy store run by my friend Ann) a few times, and every time I see the photos, I always wonder to myself – why don’t I wear more vintage? But the thing is I tend to only like the items my friend Ania picks out, but when we shoot all I want to do is take home half of the clothes. And I would if closet space wasn’t an issue. A girl can dream, right?

Today I went to my friend Melanie’s house and her upstairs, which is a lot similar to ours is her closet. All of it! If you’ve been to my house you can imagine what I am talking about.

So I am hoping to be able to clean and organize my upstairs, start and finish a couple DIY projects, organize and replace some living room furniture and have an updated decor post for you. Meanwhile, here are my favorite vintage pieces at the moment.

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Whole30 Week 3 Recap

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One more week down and kind of one more to go, and I don’t want it to end. I think I am going to stay on the Whole30 for a while (that might be another month until college starts, or another year). I am definitely going to reintroduce certain foods back into my diet. I am going to add a little bit of dairy. I have to admit I miss Chobani! I never would’ve thought I’d say that. I am also pretty excited to be able to weigh myself soon, just out of curiosity. I can’t wait to find out how much Sam lost!

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Last Saturday we went to a wedding, and here is the thing, I couldn’t remember my dinner choice. So Sam and I had an agreement to be flexible and just eat. Turns out I had a prime rib, and Sam had pasta. My prime rib came with green beans and potatoes. And Sam’s pasta was, well, pasta. I have to admit we broke the rules for that night, and even had some cheesecake. Now the interesting thing is, Sam felt pretty sick after the heavy carb and dairy meal, while I was more or less okay. Another thing that hit me while I was eating what is not a part of Whole30 diet – I don’t miss it that much. Food is just a fuel for my body so I can function. And that’s the biggest lesson we’ve learned while on Whole30 – self-control.

So we are going to finish our week and a half and go from there.

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Out of the recipes I tried last week there were a couple that totally didn’t work. I made a beef and sweet potato casserole that had too much sweet potato, so neither one of us liked it, but we still ate it, because I don’t like to waste food.

Another thing I tried to make was braised cabbage in a crock pot. I am not sure what happened, I think I had way too much cabbage, but it wasn’t as good as the baked recipe that I’ve made before. But I am still working my way through it.

I made banana blueberry muffins for breakfast yesterday, and those turned out amazing. They are absolutely not sweet, and nothing like the sugary muffins I used to make, but I am not complaining. I am also starting to realize that I don’t like almond butter as much as sunflower butter.

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But the real gem that I made was Kale Pesto, and that’s the recipe I wanted to share with you today!

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1 avocado

1 cup frozen kale

2 garlic cloves

1/4 cup olive oil

Parsley (I used about 1 tbs dried parsley and a small amount of fresh parsley – one of the few things that grows in my garden!)

Salt to taste

Add all the ingredients to the food processor and pulse until desired texture achieved. So easy and so delicious. I almost thought I could get Sam to eat it, but alas, I didn’t succeed.

I am excited for this week, Blake brought over a Swirlio, so I can’t wait to make some frozen desserts.

Whole30 Week 2 Recap

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Week 2 of Whole30 is over and I am pretty sure Sam lost at least 10 pounds by now. You are not allowed to step on the scale at all while on this diet, so I am not certain, but people at work have been telling him he looks different, and I’ve noticed the changes too! Meanwhile I am here eating watermelon, and I can’t stop!

This week was definitely easier than the last, at least for me. I think the biggest part of it was me going to Costco last Monday to do some grocery shopping. Costco always makes me feel better, and I made sure to stock up on meat to last us for the next 2 weeks if not more.

I mentioned that I will share a few things that I bought for Whole30. So here goes: eggs, chicken, beef, bacon, salmon, bananas, watermelon, carrots, dates, avocados, peaches, broccoli, snap peas and a whole lot of nuts! I can’t emphasize how incredible it is to have this membership, and how much easier it is to get all my shopping done in one place.

For this week’s post I also asked my friend Kate to share her experience with Whole30, she was the one who got us all eating right after all 😉

My name is Kate and I began Whole30 on July 6. I am almost half way through with my first 30 days and I feel amazing! I work 40 hours a week and am a busy mom so planning and meal prep has been critical for me. 

I love the meals and how I’ve been feeling while on this program. It really feels like a lifestyle change. Plus now I have enough energy to workout again!!! 

I am not the best in the kitchen, but I have found the recipes to be really delicious and pretty easy. While making Clarified Butter I did start a small fire and burn my arm. So for now I will be buying my Clarified Butter (ghee) from Trader Joes! 

My favorite recipe so far has been one that I made with my Mom (she is also on Whole30). We made Romesco Garlic Shrimp with Zucchini Noodles. We plan on making it again for an upcoming family dinner. 

A few of my favorite things this week: 

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Also the app TwoGrand (soon to be YouFood) has kept me accountable! I love checking off my daily goals and sharing my food photos. 

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Now to share some of my favorite recipes with you!

Saturday night I made this Chicken Apple Orange Spinach Salad for dinner, and Sam said that it has probably been his favorite so far.

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2 chicken breasts cut into bite size pieces

2 tbsp olive oil

1 apple diced or sliced (whatever you prefer)

1 orange peeled and diced

1 cup spinach (or more if you like spinach)

Salt and Pepper to taste

Turmeric to taste (it will make the chicken yellow, so Sam calls this Yellow Chicken Salad)

1. Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in the pan, add chicken and spices and cook until done.

2. Meanwhile prepare your spinach and your fruit and mix in a bowl.

3. Add chicken, mix well and serve.

Beef and Turkey Meatballs was another meal I cooked up for us. I’ve been craving meatballs way before we started Whole30, so getting to finally making them is a huge accomplishment.

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1 lb ground beef

1/2 lb ground turkey

2 eggs

Rosemary and Parsley to taste ( I grow those two in my very very small garden, seriously it’s two pots, but I was really excited to use them in this recipe!)

3 tbsp flex seed (now this has a weird taste, and if you’ve never had it I suggest you skip out on it, or start with 1 tbsp).

1 medium onion diced

Salt, pepper and garlic to taste

1. Preheat oven to 375.

2. Mix all ingredients in the food processor.

3. Scoop onto a foil or parchment lined pan with a spoon (I use an ice cream scoop!)

4. Bake for 10 minutes, flip and bake for 10 more.

Makes about 32 meatballs.

For the sauce:

1 can Organic Tomato Paste (I use the Costco brand)

1 Roma tomato diced

3 small peppers diced

Italian seasoning to taste

Mix all the ingredients in a small sauce pan, heat for about 5 minutes.

And finally, I want to share this Cashew Date Craisin Bites recipe. I got the idea from Lee of Fit Foodie Finds.

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25-30 dates

1 cup cashews

1 cup craisins

Pulse all the ingredients in the food processor until well mixed, then shape into bars, or roll into bite-size balls. These can be dangerous though, because they are pretty much all I want to eat now.

Well I hope you liked this week’s update, I can’t wait to share more!

Shabby Apple Tulle Skirt

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I hope everyone had a happy 4th! I am really excited to share these photos that my friend Blake shot last week at the Rose Gardens by Lake Harriet. If you’ve never been there, and you live in Minneapolis – it’s a must see/go place this summer.

The skirt is from Shabby Apple, and it’s the kind of tulle skirt I’ve always wanted to have. I had a really hard time deciding between the lengths, but went for the maxi. It is so unique and special and makes me feel, well, like a princess.

I paired it with a few of my favorite pieces, like the graphic Tee from Minneapolis Institute of Art, and two of my button downs. The skirt calls for heels and fancy necklaces, as well as red lipstick and a lot of smiles.

A few of my friends, my husband and I are starting Whole30 tomorrow! So stay tuned for updates, and some delicious recipes! Meanwhile, twirl!

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My Milly

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Last Monday I went to the very first Minnesota Blogger Bash. It was one of those rare times that I got to go to St Paul. Having lived in Minneapolis the whole time I’ve been in Minnesota, I rarely go to visit the other twin. The best part about going to St Paul and the meet up was car pooling with Tamara of Champagne and Macaroons, and Jess of Mimi and Chichi.

And of course I needed a new outfit for the event. Luckily I had Monday off and stopped by Opitz on Excelsior Blvd. If you’ve never been there, and you are reading this post, you need to go there now! It’s an amazing Outlet here in the Cities (there is another location in Minnetonka, which I don’t like as much to be honest). But they have all possible and impossible designer clothing there for a fraction of the cost. I scored this Milly dress for $30, and splurged on a Zac Posen dress that was $70.

Blogger Bash was amazing, I always enjoy hanging out with new and old blogger friends. And I really appreciate everyone who stops by to say hi! You make my day!

Did you come to the party? What did you think?

PS. A couple spoilers for the upcoming posts – My new favorite lipstick, 4th of July post featuring Sam (!!!), and why I never want to be a full time blogger 😉

Sigma Spa Brush Cleaning Mat Review

  
Cleaning makeup brushes is an important and necessary task, but if you are like me, it takes a while. The amount of brushes that I have, plus the amount of brushes that are tucked away, still in their packaging is seriously scary. It used to take me at least 20 minutes to wash the entire collection. Until I got the Sigma Brush Mat. 

Sigma, if you didn’t know, is a Minnesota based company, and a YouTube sensation. Their brushes are known for incredible quality and ease of use, and the constantly changing makeup collection keeps surprising the customers with new colors. Anything to help us be more creative and bold when it comes to our makeup. 

  
The brush mat has suction cups on the bottom, and attaches to your sink. The right side is for face brushes, while the left one is for eyes. There are seven different sections (textures) for cleaning, refining and rinsing the brushes. And it’s incredibly time saving. I was done washing all my brushes in under 10 minutes. My life has never been easier! 

  
The Spa Brush Mat is $32 and is available on Sigmabeauty.com or at their Mall of America location. 

  

One last thing, don’t clean your beauty blender using the mat, it will be destroyed! 

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