Monday, January 26, 2015

Superbowl Party Appetizer: Buffalo Chicken Dip

Game day is upon us and I know your struggling with what to make, right? Forget the chips at home and bring this amazing, bubbling buffalo chicken dip to the Super Bowl party that is sure to steal the show.

This is a simple, make ahead dish that will take you about 30 minutes from start to finish . You can make it the night before and pop it in the oven before you head to the party and that's it! Easy right? Let's get to the recipe.

Here's what you'll need:
  • 1 8oz package of softened cream cheese
  • 1 large chicken breast or 1 can of chicken, drained
  • 1/2 cup buffalo wing sauce (Franks)
  • 1/2 cup blue cheese dressing
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup blue cheese crumbles
  • 1 teaspoon of dried parsley

Preheat oven to 400°. In a mixing bowl, combine cream cheese, cooked shredded chicken breast (salt pepper and paprika to sear), buffalo sauce, parsley, blue cheese dressing and crumbles and cheese. If using fresh chicken breast, cook thoroughly and then shred with a fork. Mix thoroughly and smooth out. Place mixture into a shallow baking dish or cast iron skillet and bake, uncovered, 20-25 minutes or until cheese is melted and bubbly.

This is so delicious! I love how all the flavors come together and of course the kick from the buffalo sauce at the end! Serve this with a crusty bagette, chips, celeary sticks or crackers! Now grab the beer & head to the party!

Happy game day! 

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Home Office Inspiration

In the center of my vision board is a reminder that this year I will finally have the home office space that I've always dreamed of! I have an image similar to above showcasing a clean, minimalistic yet sophisticated workspace that any blogger would LOVE to have! Since this has been on my mind lately, I decided to share with you my top 4 home office space inspiration images! You'll notice a common theme in all the images (iMac)...this is the year I make that big purchase (fingers crossed).

Do you have an office space at home?? Let me know how you decorated it below!

Photo Source// Theeverygirl

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

3 time saving natural hair tips


If you’re anything like me then you hate doing your hair multiple times a week and despise wash day! I’ve been natural for about 6 years and the anticipation of wanting to do my hair a lot has worn of tremendously. I now appreciate low maintenance styles. Here are some tips and tricks I’ve been using recently that saves me a ton of time when doing my hair and also keeps me from having to do my hair multiple times a week.

1. Blow out twist out
I now, for the most part, do my twist out on dry hair. So, my routine now goes a little something like this: shampooing and conditioning, then doing a rough blow dry to my hair. Once dried, I section my hair and begin to flat twist in medium to large pieces (about 6 to 7 twists total). I lightly spritz my hair with water before applying my styling product and then sit under the dryer for about 30 minutes to set it. When I take this style down the next day my curls are elongated, defined and fluffy! I usually can wear my hair out for a few days until the curls begin to lose a little life.

2. Up do
When my curls from the dry twist out begin to lose definition, I like to do up do’s or utilize a banana clip to get me through the week. I’ll sometimes do a twist and roll or a braid in the front and let the hair out in the back. Something like the below :

3. New take on the high bun

Sometimes buns can get stale in the winter and to spice it up a bit, I’ve been using my banana clip and doing a reverse flat twist on the hair that’s left out to do a bun. It’s fun and looks a little different from the traditional bun. This style usually gets my though a couple days as well.

All in all, I try my best to not over do it with my hair anymore. I love the versatility of being natural but sometimes not all the maintenance that comes along with it. These are some ways that I cut corners and keep my hair looking relatively fly throughout the week--hope this list helps someone out there looking to change up their regimen a bit!

How do you maintain your hair through the week? What’s your go to style? Let me know below!

Monday, January 12, 2015

Dill & Lemon Baked Salmon with Parmesan Mashed Cauliflower

Here’s what you’ll need for salmon:
  • 2 salmon filets
  • 1 tsp dried herb medley
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 2 tbsp melted butter
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • fresh dill
  • 1/2 a lemon
Here's what you'll need for parmesan mashed cauliflower:
  • 1 medium head of cauliflower
  • 1 garlic clove diced
  • ¼ cup heavy cream or milk
  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • pinch of salt & pepper to taste

Directions for Salmon:
Wash salmon and pat dry. Place on foil and pour melted butter over both filets. Using a knife, make small insertions into the salmon and insert garlic sporadically. Next, sprinkle with salt, pepper, and squeeze the juice from lemon to finish. This is an extra step but I like my salmon blackened. Use cast iron skillet to brown salmon about 2 min per side. Then, place salmon back on foil, add dill and seal salmon in foil packet and place in oven on 425 degrees for about 10 min depending on thickness of fish.

Check fish and if pierced with a fork and salmon appears flaky, cooking is complete.

Directions for parmesan mashed cauliflower:
Cut up cauliflower into florets and boil and salted water and garlic. Once cauliflower is tender remove from water and place in blender. Add remaining ingredients into blender and pulse until smooth. Add additional salt and pepper to taste.

Serve salmon on bed of mashed cauliflower.


Friday, January 9, 2015

My Staple Makeup Items

I don't do that many beauty posts, but I decided today to share with you my top make up items that I absolutely cannot live without. Some of these items I've been using for years and others I've recently been introduced to. In any case they have become staples in my beauty regime and I just had to share! Hoping that sharing these amazing gems will help to steer someone out there looking to add some newness to their collection in the right direction. Check them out below!

1. Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer in Walnut - Oil Free
This stuff is amazing! I've never before found a tinted moisturizer that has such amazing coverage. This stuff is golden! I pretty much use it everyday and get tons of compliments about how it evens out my complexion and gives that nice smooth finish that we all love. This product will continue to be a staple in my makeup collection for a long time to come.

2. Benefit They're Real!
I love a good mascara, but have never really considered myself a mascara snob. I can use pretty much any mascara and be OK with the results. The day I tried Benefit They're Real, I was blown away. This stuff takes my lashes from just looking ok on a normal day to out of this world. It not only lengthens my lashes but also curls and volumizes. I'm obsessed with it and really can't live without it. I can't lie, I've been testing out other mascara's on the market lately to see if they would compare but nothing has truly blown me away like this product. Love it! 

3. Define-A-Brow Eyebrow Pencil in Medium Brown by Maybelline 
Anyone else out there with problem brows? My brows are super thin (genetically) and I hate it! I've always wished for thicker brows but that never happened...Soooo, after a little research, I came across this gem from Maybelline. I love a simple brow pencil that just does all the work for you. This pencil is super easy to use and gives me that natural fullness that I love. I wish I could use those fancier brow remdies but I'm just not that sophisticated in the brow department. I need something simple and most importantly easy to use. This product is exactly that--OH, and the price is great as well! You can get this baby for about $6.95 at your local drug store...STEAL!

4. Mac Mineralize Skinfinish in Gold Deposit
Ever wonder how some girls get that smooth, bronzy finish to their cheeks and brows? This is the stuff they're using! I adore this product because you use such a small amount at a time it really does last forever! This is my favorite in the summer particularly in the day when you go for that super natural look--it provides a pop of extra shimmer but in a natural way that makes everyone wonder "why is she glowing?" I love this stuff!

5. Neutrogena Visibly Even Moisturizer
This moisturizer brightens and evens out skin tone while protecting against UV rays. I love this moisturizer because I truly put it to the test and saw great results. My uneven skin tone is very prevalent around my lips and I started using this moisturizer about 4 months ago and concentrated heavily around that area. I've seen dramatic improvements since using this product. The area around my lips is much more even. It also lasts a while as you really only need to use a tiny amount daily. Almost time to re-up on this one!

6. Laura Mercier Face Primer - Oil Free
I actually got this as a sample in a gift with purchase a couple months ago when I replenished my tinted moisturizer. I've been testing it out and I am in love! Before I used this product, I noticed that my tinted moisture would literally melt away in the summer months. I would sometimes get it on my hands if I touched my face and then it would end up on my papers at work or on my clothes. Since applying this primer before using the tinted moisturizer, I've noticed that my moisturizer stays on in place and no longer comes off easily--It actually stays fresh and in place for hours, which is exactly what I was looking for. I use less than a pea size and it truly works! Looking forward to purchasing the full size product when my sample finishes.

7. Mac Mineralize Skinfinish - Natural 
This is the powder I use after applying my tinted moisturizer. It is the absolute best! It has the awesome natural-matte finish with a nice light coverage. It's also great for a little touch-up throughout the day.

8. Diva Lipstick
Hands down my favorite lipstick right now - Diva. It's creamy, smooth and goes on like butter. The perfect finish to any look.

Have you tried any of the products mentioned? If so, let me know what you think below! 



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