Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Summer Sun Essentials

Summer is unofficially here (and a few weeks early)! The weather is finally heating up in the CLE and with temps nearing 90 degrees, no less. The husband and I got our summer on a little early this year with a quick holiday getaway last week. This has me glad of the things I brought along and wishing for some other key pieces I still need to have on hand for an effortless, safe and stylish summer -  pool or beach-side. So here are some of my essentials that everyone should have at the ready.

A partner in crime. Be it a girlfriend, sister, boyfriend or husband, everything's better with someone to share the joke (or margarita) (or bad fashion watching) with

The husband & I in Puerto Morales

A cover-up that takes you from the beach to lunch (with no wet swimwear showing)

Trina Turk French Riviera Tunic $137

Ah-maz-ing Sunglasses

Tom Ford Charles Aviator $340

One sun hat big enough to cover your shoulders and another to shield your face for cocktails on the patio

H&M straw hat $9.95

Banana Republic straw fedora $45

A fun leather flip flop (no rubber here!)

Banana Republic Mazzy flip flop $39.50

A double-duty sunscreen for your face that delivers powerful collagen boosting Vitamin C and strengthening antioxidants

Kerstin Florian Oil-Free Daily Defense SPF 50 $55

A stylish beach tote that works in the city just as well

Tory Burch patterned straw tote Shopbop $295

Kate Spade cabana stripe raelin $295 

A reader and an endless supply of great books

this is the Sony pocket reader, but any Sony, Kindle or Nook will do

Cute bags to keep everything sand-free

Henri Bendel go to the beach travel set $38
Bendel bikini bag $38

A luxurious beach towel

Côte d'Azur Beach Towel Restoration Hardware $34

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Getting (a bit) Personal

I started this blog for fun. Friends were always asking me for recipes, restaurant recommendations and whether or not I've tried the latest beauty products. So I figured I'd start this fun little page and post all my latest faves and obsessions and see what people had to say. To be honest I'm completely overwhelmed at the support I've received. I assumed I'd have a few friends follow this little blog, and was completely surprised that people started reading and following. The CLE blogging community is so supportive and kind.

That being said, I feel as if I owe you an explanation and apologize for my recent lack of posts.


I have migraines.

Migraines that make me bitchy, evil and quite unkind. Migraines that make me not such a good wife, friend or co-worker. They make me want to give a big F-you to every Excedrin Migraine commercial I see. And want to smack every person who says they have one and doesn't. Why would anyone want these evil, horrible things? Believe me, I'd rather sit through dinner with you, your fourth wife and your three snotty kids than use the "I have a migraine" excuse to get out of it.

I grew up in a family where we all had chronic headaches. This was the norm for me. As a teenager I had migraines which got better as I got older. Everybody I knew had severe headaches. It never occurred to me that this was not normal. Fast forward 20 years. Last fall I began having severe migraines again and this time they landed me in the hospital. My husband (who has had -maybe- 2 headaches in his whole life) couldn't understand how I managed to live having a headache every day of my life. Now that they had become completely debilitating he forced me to the doctor.

Years ago I had gone through this process. Test after test after test couldn't come up with a solution. I was on a myriad of medications that made me feel just a bad as the headaches did. So all these years later I was skeptical to go through this process again, but I really didn't have a choice.

Long story short, I was referred to Dr. Bamford at the Cleveland Clinic Neurological Center for Pain. Wow, they've come a long way in the past 20 years! We are really so lucky in the CLE to have access to one of the best healthcare systems in the world. I see flights come in every day from all over the world bringing dignitaries from foreign countries to the CCF. And it's right here in our backyard.

But there isn't a miracle cure* and it's a long process. I'm getting better. So please understand, if you're not seeing my superficially crazy posts that I'm still here. --Most likely just piled under a bunch of blankets, in a dark room, a pillow over my head and copies of the latest issues of Harper's Bazaar and Elle piled about. Screaming at my husband how I'm dying, that "God hates me!" and why is this happening to me? Because all it really boils down to is if I can't read said magazines than I really will lose my mind. (ok, not really-but you get the point).

*there isn't a miracle cure. Really. I know what your Aunt told you. I know that your sister, brother, mother, cousin-twice-removed had them and stopped eating chocolate-sugar-caffeine-fruit-wine-tater tots, stopped inhaling oxygen, inhaled more oxygen, cut out msg, cut out pets, kids, husbands and magically their headaches went away.  I've heard it all. Everyone wants to dole out advice. It doesn't matter that I'm seeing the best specialist this side of the Mississippi. So, bring it on.

A snarky pilot I work with recently told me "Why don't you just take an Excedrin Migraine?" Hmmm. Thanks. Why didn't I think of that?

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Wrapped In Leather

From the minute I spotted this Michael Kors number on the runway I was fascinated. Kors, the king of American sportswear has done it again. By taking a simple white suit and wrapping and strapping it in leather, gives a modern edge, all while retaining a classic look. It's been available for awhile now and I thought my want would subside. No such luck. Instead it has me wanting everything I can get my hands on in wrapped, cognac leather.

Highly inappropriate beach shoes, yes. But these Emilio Pucci
sandals would look lovely perched poolside with a cocktail!

Michael Kors $850 (image via)
A bit more appropriate for the pool...KORS Michael Kors $175

Speaking of more appropriate...I like a little inappropriate beach-wear. It's not like I'm swimming laps or anything. I'm pretty much dipping in to cool off and getting back to my beach chair. I'm not talking Victoria's Secret inappropriateness. (dental floss monokini, anyone?) But a little leather, sequin or some hardware is just fine with me.

The original wonder Michael Kors $289

The ultimate waist-cincher would be perfect at the
in-laws pool.   Michael Kors $289

I'd wear this one with my girls in Vegas or South Beach
Michael Kors $278

I'll bring this one on vacation with the husband or for
watching a little beach volleyball. Again, Michael Kors
(and these are all very accurate representations of how I'd look in said swimwear.  KIDDING!)

Mr. Kors also has these amazing bamboo and gold
oversized sunnies for $195.

Celine cream canvas tote $1150 on sale $920

Reed Krakoff Boxer I $990

And if you can afford it, why not? Behold...the Boxer II
in crocodile and canvas $5990

Lauren by Ralph Lauren leather patch dress $150

Urban Outfitters cooperative leather wrap belt $34

leather lily stone necklace Banana Republic $45

Kelly Double Tour bracelet Hermes $430

Cape Cod watch Hermes $2500

Alexander McQueen leather charm bracelet $350

Ralph Lauren leather stirrup bracelet $225

House of Harlow earrings $30

Friday, May 6, 2011

J Crew Factory & Upcoming Events

It's no secret my love for J. Crew. Their mix of pomp and prep with a twist on the classics. Throw in the iconic Jenna Lyons and I begin to swoon. J Crew is one of the few stores that does 'factory' well. With factory items (made specifically for the factory store) and overstocks from the brand, it stays true to the original concept. There are deals to be had, but they stick to the quality standards that I've come to appreciate. In the Cleveland area we don't have one of these so when they began their factory site I was over the moon. Open just three days, from Friday at 12am to Sunday at midnight. You can scroll through men's and women's fashions, shoes and accessories. They have some spectacular sales and always have some sort of coupon or free shipping promo available.

Like this one that starts today:

check out j. crew aficionada for details

Some recent finds

chambray cara dress $59.50 $39.99

The bow can be untied which I love so you can customize
the bust size by simply retying.

cara dress - j. crew
necklace - bijou brigette
cuff - tory burch

Carson short $42.50 $29.50

Coralie cami $64.50 $29.99 

carson short - j. crew
coralie cami - j. crew
belt - h&m
cuff - tory burch
The pics are slightly blurry, but you get the point. I was in a hotel, armed with just my macbook :)  Make sure to read the fine print. Most factory items are returnable, but there is a Final Sale section of non-returnable items.

There are a few really exciting events coming up in May.

The first being the Homegirl & Stash Style sale kicking off today 5-10pm and Saturday 10a-5pm @ 780 Bates Rd, Rocky River

Sat 5/21 6PM - Grand RE Opening of Salty Not Sweet in Ohio City!!! I have waited and waited, while sneaking peeks at their new SoLo (south of Lorain) space.


Thurs 5/12 7-9PM NEO Food Tours E 4th/Gateway District - With their first culinary adventure under their belt, they're moving the party to East 4th Street. Tickets are $85 and include wine/cocktail pairings. This mobile feast begins at Greenhouse Tavern then moves over to House of Blues, La Strada, Zinc and possibly a few surprises along the way. The upcoming schedule looks like a fun and yummy summer!
5/25 - Little Italy
6/8 - Tremont
6/22 - University Circle
7/6 - Gordon Square
7/20 - Warehouse District
8/3 - Shaker Square
8/17 - Asia Town

Mon 5/23 - A special edition of Dinner in the Dark. Unlike the typical seated format, this will be a 15 station feast with 15+ chefs offering their best tastings at AMP 150. Micro-breweries and wineries will be providing the drinks and profits will go to fund a scholarship at the Culinary Institute of America in the name of Matthew Finkel. They have also lowered the price to $40 for this special event.

Thurs 5/26 - Dante Boccuzzi & Matthew Mytro are back with Naked Sushi.  If you haven't been (and I haven't yet) I hear it's not to be missed! Getting my hands on one of Chef Boccuzzi's sushi pops is foremost on my mind. Think of an old school push-pop, but with sushi.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Savage Beauty & The Met Ball 2011


The Metropolitan Museum of Art held it's super fab Met Ball last night. The Costume Institute Gala Benefit honored Alexander McQueen with the opening of the Savage Beauty exhibition featuring the designers ah-maz-ing body of work. This beautiful retrospective was first unveiled in London by Anna Wintour for Fashion Week in February. The retrospective will run at the Met until July 31st. This is an event not to be missed. The stars came out in full force and did not disappoint!

Gisele Bundchen is ravishing in red with a fishtail gown
from the McQueen F/W 2005-6 collection.  via

Diane Kruger vamps it up with some old
hollywood glamour in a Jason Wu dress. via

Tory Burch & Kanye West are a very striking pair! Adore Tory
in her vintage Jean Patou dress.  via

Jennifer Lopez is soft and beautiful in Gucci. via

Taylor Swift looking gorgeous and all grown up in J. Mendel. via

I think Emma Stone played it a little safe
with this Lanvin floral, but her hair and makeup are
absolute perfection. via

Love myself a feather and some romance! Chrissy Teigen
& John Legend are the night's cutest couple! via

SJP looking wonderful (as always) in Alexander McQueen &
Andy Cohen, my latest male obsession - love him!! via
Who knew Marc Jacobs was so tiny? Standing next to Robert
Duffy, he looks like a schoolgirl :)  via

The incomparable Zac Posen with Christina Ricci via

Daphne Guiness doing what she does best. Over. The. Top. via

Madonna in Stella McCartney. via

Blake Lively(looking fabulously glam) in Chanel & Karl
Lagerfeld in Tom Ford. via

Have I mentioned that I go to bed every night, praying I'll wake up
looking like Isla Fisher? She played it a bit safe in this Tory Burch dress,
but I love her nonetheless! via

Demi Moore in Prabal Gurung. via

Ashley Greene shimmering in Donna Karan. via

Florence Welch in one of her numerous costume changes she
sported for the evening. via

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