The rain storms that hit Houston were impeccably timed if you ask me. After several whirlwind weekends in June and more to come in July, I’m so excited for every excuse to stay indoors with little to nothing to do. I hope you find some time to yourself to do the same, and if so, that these five reads entertain you.
Hi, everyone! I do my best to incorporate a well rounded list of links for those of you interested in all the things from interiors, food, wellness and whatever else. I hope you find something suited for you in today’s round-up.
A tear-jerking tale of a bride who received the best wedding gift of all is also a testament to how we should live our lives during the most important moments.
Your interior color story could say a lot about you. Mine’s yellow! What’s yours?
I’ve been on Noble 31‘s email list to be the first to know when their first collection launches, so I wanted y’all to be filled in too. Their timeless tops are dreamt up by a team of sisters from Texas. Get one today!
Clichés are cliché for a reason, and sometimes, the same holds true for tourist traps. These restaurant ones are actually worth it.
I’m currently bike riding along Venice Beach with two college besties en route to the adorable Rose Café. I can’t wait for this getaway to start my summer refreshed for all the fun that’s in store. Here are some weekend reads to help you get into R&R mode, especially all you moms who deserve it most.
If you can’t get to California any time soon, here are five spots to taste wine that aren’t Napa.
In honor of Cinco de Mayo, we teamed up with the fabulous Marcia from Smart in the Kitchen to bring y’all some festive recipes for your party weekend! Today’s collaboration started when I offered to host my daughter’s class at our house for dinner a few weeks back. I love throwing parties and host often but have never hosted anything for a group this size (20 or so people) that requires dinner. For bigger groups, I typically outsource the food aka order pizzas (ha!) or do easy appetizers. But dinner for 20, I was in over my head.
I immediately called Marcia and asked for ideas. Clueless in the Kitchen meet Smart in the Kitchen! She had me at kale guacamole! Marcia was also working on a post for fajitas for a crowd and promised it was SUPER easy. If you’ve got a grill (check!) and have a Trader Joe’s nearby (check!), you too, can rock some delicious fajitas for a big group. I did cheat and pick up some rice and beans from my favorite Mexican restaurant. That’ll be our little secret though. Another secret I’ll share, the bagged salads at Whole Foods. That’s right, salad in a bag folks. The Taylor Farms organic Sirancha ranch chopped salad is delish. It comes with tortilla strips that aren’t soggy, sunflower seeds and shredded parmesan cheese. Yum. And add in some avocado and it screams made from scratch. For an appetizer I threw out some crudités with Marcia’s homemade ranch dressing. And served her margaritas for a crowd, another super simple recipe (3 ingredients!) that can be made ahead! After a few refreshing margs, the entire crowd will think the meal was fantastic no matter how it turned out anyway. Ha! Happy Cinco de Mayo, y’all!
If you use a food processor to make this, there’s no need to chop the kale fine. If you aren’t using a food processor, be sure to chop the kale and onions very well.
Juice of 2 limes (about 2 tablespoons)
4 small Lacinato kale leaves, stems removed and roughly chopped
½ cup white or yellow onion, chopped (or less to taste)
¼ cup cilantro leaves
1 small Serrano or jalapeno, deseeded and chopped
3 large ripe avocados, halved, pitted and peeled
½ teaspoon sea salt (or to taste)
In the bowl of your food processor, combine the lime juice, kale, onion, cilantro, Serrano and salt. Pulse until combined.
Add the avocado and pulse until you reach your desired consistency.
Taste for seasoning and add salt or lime juice if necessary.
If you do not have a food processor, make sure the kale and cilantro is well chopped and combine ingredients with a potato masher or mash well with a fork.
This easy salsa verde will save for a week stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Use it on scrambled eggs, tacos, chicken and grilled flank steak. Tomatillos contain natural pectin, so don’t be surprised if the consistency of the salsa thickens after it’s refrigerated.
1 pound tomatillos
¼ teaspoon salt
Fresh ground pepper
1 serrano pepper, seeds and ribs removed and finely chopped (this amount can be halved or quartered to taste)
½ white or yellow onion, chopped (about ¾ cup)
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup cilantro leaves, roughly chopped
Juice of 2 limes
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Remove husks and place tomatillos on a half-sheet pan lightly coated in oil. Roast in a preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until soft and browned.
Place the roasted tomatillos and the remaining ingredients in a blender or food processor and pulse until the salsa comes together. Be careful when lifting the lid because of the steam.
Quick Pickled Red Onions
Pickled red onions take only 10 minutes to put together, but they are better after sitting for 3-4 hours. In her book, Tacolicious, Sara Deseran makes these with the addition of Mexican oregano which adds a nice flavor.
1 cup rice vinegar or white wine vinegar
1 cup water
2 tablespoons dark brown sugar or coconut sugar
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 red onion, cut in half and sliced very thin into half moons
In a medium sauce pan, bring to a boil the vinegar, water, sugar and kosher salt.
Place the sliced red onion in a glass or ceramic bowl and pour the warm rice vinegar mixture over the onions. Cover and soak for 3-4 hours.
My mom’s favorite holiday is Easter, and it’s hard to blame her. With winter behind us and the sunshiney seasons ahead, it seems like the best of 2017 is still to come. Here are some good reads while you unwind with your family over the long holiday weekend:
Springing forward took me by total surprise this year. My sleep cycle is finally up to speed, though, and I’m very much looking forward to dinners during the last hours of daylight. Here’s five links for your weekend reading pleasure:
Quotes considered cliché likely have grains of truth for all of us. “Be present” is one we hear often, but I find it difficult to apply as a future-focused 24-year-old. But then this morning, I read someone write about it as their mantra, explaining the importance of their present moments in paving their future. This article teaches that lesson: what you do today will make for a better tomorrow. Below are four other fun links to read this weekend!
I live in a pair of cotton drawstring pants I got from a street vendor in Paris, so I’m eyeing this chambray version.
This Aquazzura meets de Gournay collaboration has me pining for spring.
Healthy eaters weigh in on their habits. My favorite: the Frenchies.
More big baby news for L. Avenue! My brother and sister welcomed a little girl into the world this Wednesday. We love Eloise Jane already, and I can’t wait to watch her grow up with her big brother, Max. Here’s five links for reading this weekend:
Decorate :: Eloise will have a Palm Springs inspired nursery with this crib sheet. Seeing this girl’s room makes my imagination go wild for all the magical ways her room can evolve with this theme and color scheme.
Go :: I’m already salivating for a boozy brunch at Leo’s Oyster Bar on the San Francisco Bay for my birthday, but my next stop may be this whimsical café on the other side of the world.
Browse :: I feel as though I’ve found my British kindred spirit in Louise Roe, budding lifestyle blogger who happens to reside in the same city as my top two faves, Garance Doré and Emily Schuman. May have to pay a visit to LA!
Eat :: I recently discovered acclaimed Houston chef Chris Shepherd’s curated list of his favorite spots around town. WD and I tried London Sizzler, and it satisfied my saag paneer craving big time.
Shop :: I love the feminine edge of this biker jacket, and for the price, I wouldn’t feel bad for only wearing it on occasion in the mild Houston weather.
Looking forward to volunteering at tonight’s A Couture Cause and meeting some of you. Don’t be shy, and please say hi!
It’s Friday the 13th! Piggybacking off my post on resolutions last week, I want to talk fear today. I think there’s two camps of people when we start a new year: those fearful of what the future might bring and those excited to take it on. Funny enough, the same nerves that manifest fear and anxiety within you also create excitement. So, the next time fear comes knocking, channel that energy into excitement. I’ve rounded up five articles that touch on something a lot of us fear in hopes that they inspire you to embrace these things rather than shy away in 2017.
new places :: I’m heading to San Francisco for the first time next month, but I’m all intrigued by places much unlike my own like Africa, Australia and India.
When it comes to holiday decorating, which team are you on? Team get it up early and enjoy it for months or team first things first, let’s get through Halloween and maybe even Thanksgiving. Mostly because I’m a procrastinator, I belong on the latter group. But this year on L. Avenue, we’re swinging early and often.
Because it’s our goal to bring y’all useful gift guides, style ideas and decorating inspiration, today’s as good a day as any to get the ball rolling. And because next week is Thanksgiving (OMG, what?!), even if your sporting the wait til’ after Turkey Day team colors, by the time you figure out your holiday decorating plans, it’ll be high time to trim the tree!
Here are a few of our favorite Christmas decorations from around the web.
A few of the things that made the list, I actually own. I break out the Williams Sonoma kitchen towels in red and green stripe every year. They are my favorite and add a little festive cheer to mundane kitchen cleaning chores. I also own Williams Sonoma’s plaid coffee mugs and even bought the girls a set for their version of coffee (chocolate milk!). Plaid mug coffee talk has now become a fun Christmas tradition of ours.
When it comes to decorating my house, there are two things I love to collect. The Nambe manger scene is one. My mother-in-law gifted this to me last Christmas and I love it. You can add a piece to the collation each year, but I love this grouping as a starter set. A great gift idea for someone you buy for every year. Like your mother-in- law. 🙂 I also recently started collecting these gorgeous Simon Pierce Christmas trees which look so pretty mixed in with small glass vases and Christmas stems on your table.
I’m hosting a few holiday parties this year and am planning to pull the trigger on these festive champagne flutes. And these cocktail napkins are so great. I tend to have more contemporary taste when it comes to things for the home but love mixing in more traditional pieces too. Especially around he holidays.
And I saved the best pick for last, as I’m all about snuggling up in this festive blanket with my new baby boy all season long!
Cheers to you and yours as we quickly approach the most wonderful time of the year!