Inspiration…


 I think we all have our list of women that inspire us! I have a top three and I am always checking in and on what they’ve been doing in their loves and in the world. Whether it be in business, fashion, spirituality, etc., etc. 
These images not only inspire me visually, but also creatively…they help me focus and validate my drive and purpose. 
The ever-fabulous Nicole Richie. She may have been obnoxious and snooty in her earlier days of Paris and The Simple Life! but her dynamic evolution and business success, along with her “somewhat” quiet life she leads now with her children and husband, (a good boy from Maryland). She’s a pure fashionista and I think she’s incredible!     


On top of fashion sense she’s devoted to charities like UNICEF, The Art of Elysium, and her own charity,  The Richie Madden Children’s Foundation. A happy family, successful clothing line, compassion, and life on the go is all I ask for!
My Mentor…even though she hasn’t officially agreed to the personal commitment yet! I’m ever-grateful to have her be mine from afar for now. Diane Von Furstenberg is everything business and lifestyle savvy that I aspire to become.
“To Help, Give, and Inspire is a Privilege.” DVF
I can’t even begin to explain in too much detail how heavy of an impact she and her foundations have made on local and international communities. The following is a rundown of this funds she serves on the board of, has created herself, or is heavily involved in in some way, shape, ore form:

 
Femme Fatale! I hope to have seen the success, love, passion, and commitment on some level closer to what she’s been able to achieve when I’m rockin’ stilettos at 64! 
And finally Rosario Dawson…her natural beauty, brains, and talent are unsurpassed in my humble opinion.
On top being an incredibly talented actress and singer, she has founded or supported the following charities:

Late Nights and Lots of Catching Up!

Welp…it’s been about two weeks and with summer and lazy, sunny, or even jam-packed days, it’s been a bit hard to keep up with ze blogging. But I’ve got a lot of new recipes, exciting news and so on.

Cooking has been my form of “relaxation” as of late and I don’t think there’s any better way to get the ball rolling than with awesome, quick recipes and some pretty pretty pictures to go along with it all.

Sweet Pot Fries…pre-baked

So…I know I know. We all know how to make our own fries. And I’m sure you’ve probably made a stab at sweet potato fries before too. These however were way too delicious to not share and they’re a perfect snack to make on those “what should I do with these sweet pots I’ve had in my fridge for the last three days?”

Slice them to your liking, (I prefer mine a bit more meaty as they tend to shrink down as they cook), sprinkle with olive oil, sea salt, and pepper and pop them in the oven. 400f for about 20-25 minutes but monitor closely because they cook down quickly and everyone’s oven heats a little differently.

I chopped up two medium potatoes and I still had two thirds of a container left afterwords to store for the next day or so. And believe me, they were so good I definitely threw the second half of the batch in to cook the next day!

Left over-every ready delicious goodness for later in the week!

The final results turned out to be one of the best snacks I’ve had in a while (I think one tends to forget how easy and delicious sweet potato fries can be!). Serve with some organic ketchup and enjoy!

Crunchy but not overdone!

Not too shabby!

Oh the Summertime!

What a crazy, fun-filled, two weeks that have passed! I know I haven’t posted in that amount of time but the kids and I went on vacation, and I Just got back and dove into life as soon as I pulled up in the driveway.

We had such an incredible time at the beach and none of us wanted to come back. We stay at the same place every summer and this year did not disappoint. We’re always right on the beach and it’s great because it allows me to wake up early, (preferably before the kids), and go claim a spot on the beach at 8am! I can run right back upstairs, read a bit of my book on the balcony, and then, once they’re up and functioning little beach bums, I make breakfast. Then we head down with the cooler packed for the day!

View from our place!


The kids has such an amazing trip and I’m glad I was able to get them up there this year. With so much going on with setting up shop, the house, the illustrations for Busy Butterfly (images to come later after copyright); on top of the daily grind, (cleaning, cooking, laundry, etc., ) it really was a much needed, relaxing breath of fresh air.

The Kids-plus one! 

That plus my tan was AHmazing! 

So…needless to say, going to the beach for a week AND being a seafood lover definitely could have thrown me off; which it did but not entirely. Even if it’s just me trying to reason with myself that’s fine right? lol

Luckily for us we have a full kitchen in the place and I had it stocked with good healthy food options. I didn’t go on a binge or anything like that: Ok. I had one ice cream cone the whole week and it was on the boardwalk so cut me a little slack πŸ˜‰

Overall though, I did pretty ok! This was my breakfast from Tuesday and another morning I was still making a big ‘ole salad.

Beans with Toms mixed in and a side of spinach! All of which I bought from a produce stand on the way down.

*It was delicious and hearty and filled me up so I could stand to sit in the sun all day.

Since I’ve cleverly shifted this into the food direction I’ll just run with it. I had an awful 4th of July weekend; food-wise that is. I got back from the beach and had too many bbq’s and temptations in my face. Paired with a few drinks, my reasoning goes out the door when my tummy needs carbs.

C’est la vie right? Kind of? Well, regardless of what’s happened I am very proud to say that I am back on track, stocked up, and am a chopping, juicing, creating machine! I’ve got a few recipes and favorite items of the moment to share with you:

Lemon Water

While this isn’t anything new to anyone and thanks to this month’s issue of Whole Living, I’ve dusted off my pitcher that used to hold hand towels and am keeping lemon water on hand at all times. It’s so refreshing, especially after the long days of clearing out the garage and yard work I’ve had going on since I’ve been back.

Another chilled beverage I’ve been keen on this week is my Red Rooibos Tea. I’ve been brewing four or so cups at once and then throw it in another pitcher to cool and drink throughout the day!

Iced Tea…Red Rooibos Style

I’ve been starting my mornings off with a big fat juice. Yesterday was a good ‘ole green one, today’s was a blend of Beets (1 med.), Straws (1/2 cup), Spinach (three handfuls or so), a pear, an apple, 1 tbsp honey, and 8 oz. of h2o. I originally saw a similar recipe on A Grateful Life, but have since been adding this and/or that to it. What I listed above is what I had today and it was good, hearty, filling, and the perfect mix of sweets.

Sweet Green Beet Juice!

 
I mentioned Whole Living a few paragraphs back but I must say they had the most delicious looking raw zucchini on the cover. I of course took the recipe and ran with it and added/omitted a few things (mainly the walnuts). My version includes:

1/2 large zucchini
1 vine ripe tom
1/4 c green bell pepper
2 baby bella mushrooms
1/4 c red onion
1 tbsp olive oil
1-2 cloves garlic
salt/pepper to taste
dash of balsamic vinaigrette 

Shred the zucchini and set aside. Mix all other ingredients in large bowl and pour olive oil in. Mix well. Let stand for 30 mins (I actually left mine overnight…it was amazing). Add the sauce to the “pasta” and enjoy.

With all of the ingredients listed above I was actually able to get three servings worth of pasta.

Zucchini Pasta 

And my lovely serving that I had. Plenty of it left for a snack or next meal!

VoilΓ  !

I think it’s safe to say that I’m back on track and am loving that I’m able and excited to create beautiful meals on a daily basis.

This week is all about creativity as well (when is it not?). I’ve got to get these illustrations completed because they are holding me  back from diving into opening up my Etsy shop and I’m itching to get it up and running. I haven’t even felt comfortable touching it yet as a vendor because I’ve still got to get my logo together; once I have that I can keep movin’ forward!!!

Positive thoughts until the next time! Peace and Love…