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Houston Hot Spots City Guide

February 1, 2017
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Living in Houston has me waaaay excited for this year’s Super Bowl. I have to admit, most years I tune into the big game strictly for the nachos and commercials. But this year, we’re hosting in mine and Molly‘s (the face behind the Friday Five) hometown, so we actually know the teams playing. Even more, we’re pumped for the festivities leading up to this Sunday’s main event. In case you’re in town for the Super Bowl, here is a quick comprehensive BEST of Houston guide. Enjoy!

EAT & DRINK

BRUNCH/LUNCH

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image source

Tiny Boxwoods :: Escape the Upper Kirby hustle and bustle here. Cookies are their claim to fame, but our favorite part is overlooking the pristine lawn from the patio with a latté.

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image source

Hopdoddy :: Be first in line for these gourmet burgers in River Oaks District. Pick your poison between cold craft beers or decadent milkshakes while watching the TVs for game day coverage.

image via Hurried Hostess

image via Hurried Hostess

The Dunlavy :: A family friendly brunch spot with the best views in town of our Buffalo Bayou. Bike it before or walk it afterwards: it starts on the border of historic River Oaks and extends all the way into downtown.

Brassiere 19 :: Veuve Clicquot is priced at market, and Beyonce is rumored to have a boozy brunch here Sunday morning. Say no more. We’ll see you there!

DINNER

photo via bb butchers

photo via bb butchers

B&B Butchers :: Of all of the dinner spots in town, my money is on this spot being the best celeb sighting scene. This upscale steak house is perched just outside of downtown and the dinner menu is to die for. If you’re lucky enough to snag a ressie, go big or go home and get the Chef Tommy’s Bacon. You’ll thank me for one of the most delicious dishes I’ve tasted. Ever. Post dinner, head to Social 51 next door, an upscale pop-up bar created just for SuperBowl.

Uchi :: More than dinner, this sushi spot originally of Austin is a dining experience. Dubbed one of the top eight sushi spots in the country, you’d be sad to miss it.

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photo via Yelp

Armando’s :: Mexican restaurants are on every corner, but this one stands apart from the rest. The amazing ahi tuna tartare tacos were served at A Couture Cause, and they were a hit.

image via Wallpaper

image via Wallpaper

State of Grace :: Pull up a seat in the pearly oyster bar for cocktails and coastal fare or dive into the dining room where beautiful leather booths lie beneath the impressive deer mounts for true Texas decor.

photo via Zagat

photo via Zagat

Underbelly :: At minimum, visit the wine bar at this Montrose establishment or find brews at Hay Merchant next door. Stay for supper served by star chef Chris Shepherd. The goat dumplings are his original creation and out of this world.

COFFEE

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Common Bond :: The two of us first met here, discussing our mutual love for blogging and having breakfast here. Come in for a cup coffee, and don’t leave without a box of pastries.

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image via Coffee Compass

Catalina :: This spot is East on Washington on your way downtown, so grab a coffee on your way to Discovery Green.

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Blacksmith :: A quaint hipster coffee shop, get the best biscuit this side of the Mississippi here. The Benton’s bacon, egg and cheese croissant is the bomb.com.

COCKTAILS

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image via cnn

Bayou & Bottle :: Killer cocktails, killer atmosphere in the newly renovated Four Seasons hotel, this chic bourbon concept is not to be missed.

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Anvil :: The menu at this Montrose staple is Texas-sized, but every drink is as delicious as it is sophisticated. If you’re me, you order Pliny’s and a pretzel to share.

The Pastry War :: Texas is known for mean margaritas, but tequila drinks of all kinds can be found at this downtown bar.

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image via eater

Julep :: Their namesake is their signature drink, but they’ve got plenty more where that came from. A stone’s throw from downtown on Washington, my favorite to sip on is the Whispering Mathilda since gin is my spirit of choice.

SHOPPING & BEAUTY

SHOPPING

Tootsies :: A Houston establishment, the chicest Houstonians shop at Tootsies. Carrying a beautifully curated collection of both contemporary and designer styles, this boutique is a must-shop.

photo by Molly Bridget McConn

photo by Molly Bridget McConn at Alice + Olivia

River Oaks District :: Houston’s newest luxury shopping destination, favorite stores include Alice + Olivia, Intermix, Joie, Roberta Roller Rabbit, and Bonpoint and locally owned BAANOU carries everything you’ll need for a night out in H-town.

photo via Biscuit Home

photo via Biscuit Home

Biscuit :: I’m biased, but this shop is a hop, skip and a jump from several of our other hot spots and is home to a Houston designer’s original bedding line and great gifts for your Houston hostess for the weekend.

photo via cloudinary

photo via cloudinary

Whim :: Houston’s newest contemporary boutique located a block away from Tiny Boxwoods. Brunch and shopping sounds like the perfect Houston Saturday game plan.

BEAUTY

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Full Blown :: This boutique blow dry bar has a full cocktail bar and couture fashion show coverage on a big screen. They sell R & Co. products, and you’ll be in walking distance from Brasserie 19 when you’re done.

Dry Bar River Oaks

Dripped Nail Salon located in the heart of Montrose, just a few miles from Downtown

Paloma Nails Houston’s newest nail salon in the heart of Uptown

We hope you enjoyed the tour of our hometown, H-town!

LAVEhouston3v3

 

 

 

Around {H} Town + Travel, Fashion, Featured, Kids, LAvenue, Motherhood

Fall resolutions.

September 22, 2014
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So long summer…

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Summer was awesome, but I’m not that sad to say farewell.  It’s equally awesome to welcome the new wave of energy that is fall. Well summer part 2 if you live in Texas. Lately, I feel like every other conversation I’ve had with friends revolves around post summer/back-to-school resolutions. You know, less crazy travel schedules, getting back into a routine, waking up earlier, working out more, etc. etc. I have all of these resolutions and then some. I honestly think we should all pick up our new year’s resolutions again in September with the beginning of a new season. I mean, I have a much better chance of sticking to mine when it’s not boring January and all I want to do is wear sweat pants and sit in front of the fire with hot cocoa. I can’t think of a better time to get into a new groove. Or launch a new blog?! Hehe.

I’m pretty pumped to launch L. Avenue. It’s going to be an exciting fall for the blog. I’m planning some fun fall fashion posts, an interview with a fabulous ready-to-wear designer, a travel review from one of my favorite places in the world and much more. So tell me, what are your new season resolutions?

Here are a few of mine…

  • start and finish this book before the movie comes out–Yep, I’m officially the last chick on Earth who hasn’t read it
  • blog 3 days a week
  • wake up in a better mood aka wake up before the kids with a cup of jo in hand to start the day caffeinated
  • start a workout regimen—I’m thinking Define class, the more social the better my chance of actually going more than once a year
  • attempt to cook meals that my kids and husband will enjoy aka less time in the kitchen preparing two meals per evening

That’s it. Easy peasy, right? We’ll see where I end up in a month.

LZ

image via my absolute fave Insta photog

Fashion, Featured, LAvenue, Motherhood

L. Avenue is live!

September 14, 2014
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Hellooooo! It’s so great to be back and blogging from my new website. I missed out on a lot of bad summer TV most nights and daytime vacation naps to birth this little fashion blog. And it’s a good thing I’ve had some talented friends in my corner to help along the way. Especially my gals over at Duo Paradigms whose patience with me over everything from fonts (you have no idea how many hours we spent on this) to back end web design has been top notch. I owe y’all an endless supply of flowers and Starbucks gift cards for putting up with my over-caffeinated, slightly bossy, somewhat ADD personality.  I updated my “about” page and thought this would be a great starting point for a little background on my blogging history (yawn, haha) and the creation of  L. Avenue.

On how I got into blogging…

When my best friend told me to start a blog, I remember thinking, “This sounds exciting, but what on Earth am I going to blog about? Will I be able to continue to come up with new post ideas every week and when will I find time (with a 3 month old baby) to post frequently?” I’ve somehow found 269 things to talk about with y’all over the past few years. My list of blog topics I want to blog about is LONG, and at this point, time is my only barrier. Do you think we could convince my two babies under age three to nap in harmony for a FULL two hours daily so I can post regularly?

The type A in me has always been pretty deliberate and extremely goal oriented. But starting the blog was one of the first hobby’s I’ve taken up where I didn’t have a clear goal, “run 3 miles, 4 times a week, take a class to learn to do x, by y time.” I guess that’s the nice thing about the blog hobby. You can try it out with little or no sunk cost other than a little bit (or a LOT) of free time. Thus the birth of my first lifestyle blog, High Heels and Handlebars.

On what I blog about…

One of my first and fondest blog memories happened about a week into blogging. I remember standing in my kitchen whipping up Frozen orange julius drinks for my Mom and hubby to try. It was such a fun creative outlet; from recipe, to drink creation, to photography and then bringing it all to life in a blog post. As time passed my post idea list was overflowing, but unless I decided to forgo sleep altogether there was only time for 1-2 posts a week. And the fashion posts seemed to organically take precedence over everything else. They started with computer versions of magazine collages covering everything from style trends, to what to wear to a football tailgate, to the best baby bags. I taught myself Picasa and then Photoshop and what felt like minutes turned into hours of blog work. After a good 6 months of feeling like my only readers were my Mom and hubby, friends and acquaintances started commenting on my posts and with that came suggestions to do as the other style bloggers do and photograph myself in the outfits I’m blogging about. I mean, who does this?! Asking total strangers and bugging friends to snap pics of me for the blog was and still is super awkward for me. My close friends even coined the phrase “it’s for the blog,” every time we take photos when we’re together! Ha. But just like you, I too follow style bloggers for outfit inspiration. So I totally get that it’s a lot more compelling than a magazine collage. Hence, the metamorphis into a style blog. You’ll still see tidbits of travel, interiors and motherhood mixed in. Because hey, I’m chatty and there’s a lot worth talking about.

On launching a new website, L. Avenue…

The wheels started turning last spring during a quick girls weekend with my friend Lauren (also the person who encouraged me to start a blog in the first place). I was approaching my second full year of blogging regularly and itching to bring some new energy to my website. After too many glasses of bubbly I pitched the idea to start a blog together that we would co-author. Thus the idea for L. Avenue was born. Fast forward a few months and Lauren got an amazing work promotion which meant no free time for blogging. We were already in the design phase for L. Aveunue and I was really loving where things were going, so I decided to keep on keeping on and never looked back. L. Avenue is finally live and hopefully the amazing Lauren will contribute from time to time because she’s a riot and a beauty product junkie.

On what I hope my readers can gain from following along…

For one, outfit inspiration. I find so much of my inspiration from other bloggers, fashion icons, Instagram, and Pinterest. I spend hours pouring over magazines and the internet to keep up with the latest trends, sales, etc. to share with readers. And I’m sure I’ll throw in beauty news, recipes and a little bit of life’s antics and musings.

What I would love from you, my amazing readers…

I would love to hear your feedback. I swear the days I receive a comment that isn’t spam (ha) are the best days! I love running into friends and acquaintances who offer feedback, both positive and constructive. It’s nice to know I’m not just talking to myself all day long. It’s nice to know you are out there reading along every once in a while. 😉

On my goals for the blog…

Above anything, my blog still feels like a hobby. But I’ve been lucky enough to become affiliated with contacts who’ve given me the opportunity to convert my hobby into a very small part time job. How am I paid? When you purchase something online through links on my blog I get a very small commission, think pennies on the dollar. Hey, every penny adds up! And not to worry, it doesn’t cost you a dime. I can also be paid through advertising affiliates but am really picky about who I will work with and will only work with brands that I would wear on the reg. 🙂

The truth is choosing to forgo a full-time career to stay at home with my babies wasn’t a hard choice for me. I feel very fortunate to be able to do so, but it’s not without sacrificing a part of my being that truly loved having a career. I’m not going to get into the whole work/career debate on you, we’ve seen enough Facebook posts on that. My point is, getting to a place with my blog where it could serve as a part-time job, has been very exciting for me. And it’s also affirmed that my readers really do find style inspiration from the work I’m putting out there, which is beyond gratifying for me. Thanks y’all!

Above all this blog is a wonderful outlet for me, something completely different than any job I’ve ever had that requires a more creative, artistic side of the brain that I really enjoy exercising. If I get to a place where I’m not excited to sneak out of bed an hour before the hubs and babies to work on a new post, then I’ll rethink this whole thing. For now, I’m very excited to launch my new website. My goal is to post 3 days a week, so please check in with me or just sign up to receive my new posts in your inbox or through Bloglovin.

XO,

LZ

P.S. If you scroll down through my main blog page, you’ll find a few archived style posts from High Heels and Handlebars that I wanted to share with you.

 

 

Around {H} Town + Travel, Fashion, LAvenue

Rocky Mountain high….

September 1, 2014
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I don’t think we’re in Houston anymore. There is topography and a wrap over my shoulders in July. Yaay for Colorado! I would love to find a part-time summer only job in this great state. They actually cancelled our return flight back to Houston. No really, thank YOU United! Maybe this is a sign. 😉 Anyway, lets talk crop tops for a minute. I’ve toyed around with crop tops a lot lately. They are pretty hard to avoid since they’re uber trendy right now. I’m pretty gun-shy on baring any skin but just a little peak with a high waisted skirt seems to work. What do you think? Are you rocking crop tops this summer? I’m obsessed with this striped crop. I’d also wear it under a pair of white or denim overalls. Is there anything more summer than navy and white with a pop of bright pink?! I’ve had this high low skirt in my closet since before Easter and have worn it with everything from a blazer and button down to this summer crop. It definitely has dress up/dress down flexibility. Thank goodness slides are the new wedge this summer. These slides are on repeat in my summer get up. And as much as I’d love a pretty stack of bracelets with this outfit, I’m a one trick pony in the bracelet department these days. I’m into the edible bracelet trend AKA jewlrey Miss. C will enjoy using as a teething ring.

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outfit details: skirt also on sale here / top / slides / earrings, found here, online here / scarf (old), also love this one / clutch, last seen here, similar *on sale for $29!

Photo credit: Cheeseburgers on China

Around {H} Town + Travel, Fashion, LAvenue

Santa Barbara chic

September 1, 2014
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I love everything about Santa Barbara. It really is my happy place. We spent a little over a week there last month and it was absolute bliss. The kids did really well traveling and we met up with friends and family which makes vacationing that much more fun. This place is kid heaven. The beach, the zoo, free fruit and balloon animals at the Farmer’s Market just to name a few of the activities on repeat while we are there. And adult heaven too. Think wine country, hikes with views of the mountains and golf with the Pacific ocean as your water hazard. I also love how relaxed the street style is in Santa Barbara. Women here do comfortable chic better than anywhere else I’ve ever been. I dig high heels as much as the next shoe enthusiast, but urge you to leave yours at home when you vacation here….

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Outfit details: found at Diani boutique, also here online, / shorts, old but similar here and here / sandals, sold out online, similar here, also love these / bracelet / skinny cuff / letter necklace also found at Kuhl-Linscomb / earrings, found at Diani boutique in Santa Barbara, similar here / backpack / sunglasses

P.S. I can’t believe I failed to mention the amazing shopping in the “adult heaven” description earlier. Diani boutique, Dressed and K. Frank to name a few of my faves….

Fashion, Give Back, LAvenue

Pink in Paree

September 1, 2014
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I’m excited to team up with Susan G. Komen for their upcoming Impact Awards luncheon, Laugh and Live for the Cure. The Fashion Police chief herself, Joan Rivers, will be speaking at this year’s event on June 17th in Houston. In addition to spreading the word about this amazing cause, I’ll be sharing all things pink on the blog this week. Today’s look features my go to blazer which happens to be nothing less than PINK perfection, I lived in this Smythe gem this spring and am sure it will be a go to in my closet for years to come.

The perfect Paris sightseeing date(s)…my pink boyfriend blazer and my best girlfriend, of course. This was a great layering piece for cooler Paris mornings.

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outfit details: pink blazer, also love this pink blazer steal / button down shirt similar here and here / skirt / scarf (old), similar here and here / slippers / backpack , also love this one / necklace / sunglasses / nails

P.S. click here to purchase your ticket to the Laugh and Live for the Cure luncheon.

Fashion, LAvenue

bedtime stories.

September 1, 2014

How long should you wait before wearing the same outfit twice? My rule has always been two weeks, but these days if I find something easy, wearable, trendy (always a perk) and comfortable, I’m breaking the rules big time. Like these floral track pants. I’ve worn them to a girls dinner, to run errands, brunch and to meet my new baby niece (the perfect occasion for a floral print!) Wardrobe repeat is an understatement. I’ve been mixing up the tops, shoes and accessories and my favorite combo includes (gasp) birkenstocks and a super soft button down from Tarjay. I feel a cross between lazy and exposed (accidentally leaving the house in your pj’s and slippers) wearing this outfit. I’m so cozy I should probably be restricted to sitting on the couch watching the Bachelorette in this get up. Not to mention the birks give my feet a nice break from mules and pumps. For those of you who didn’t partake in the birk trend in the 90’s, these puppies literally mold to your feet and feel like slippers.

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Outfit details: top / pants *on sale / birkenstocks / necklaces / clutch, similar here and here /

And another look, with matching florals and leather sandals.

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Outfit details: top *on sale / pants / sandals (old), similar here / earrings, here / necklace / nails

Fashion, LAvenue

Will you rock…..a crop top?

September 1, 2014

Will you rock a crop top? I’m dying to know. At first glance, I was completely out on this trend. Bare midriff’s should be reserved for the beach and even that seems questionable for this 30 something after popping out a few babies. Maybe it’s just me, but crop tops are ubiquitous right now; in every single magazine, on every single A-lister, on every single style icon, just not in my closet. And the thing is, this season they look nothing like the 80’s/90’s versions we saw rock stars donning on MTV. They look so much more grown up, classic and chic this time around. I’ve bought two crop tops over the past few months and found both to be super easy to wear. I wasn’t comfortable enough to bare any skin, but love how this top looks layered with a crisp white button down. What do you think?

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Outfit details { sachin + babi crop top, saks stores {not sold online yet}, similar here but I also love this chambray version and this embellished version by sachin + babitheory button down / citizens of humanity flare jeans / tibi mules / miu miu clutch, similar here / aviators, similar by ray ban / mani  }

 

 

 

 

 

bcbg pleated maxi skirt /

Fashion, LAvenue

blogger crush on BCBG spring 2014

September 1, 2014

A few weeks ago I was invited to my favorite Houston boutique, TOOTSIES, to play dress-up in BCBG’s amazing spring line. I’ve been having a moment with jumpsuits and this gem is my favorite piece from the collection. I actually bought it in coral, which I’m seeing all over the place for spring.

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Outfit details: BCBG jumpsuit, TOOTSIES / YSL Tribute Sandal, TOOTSIES / Ranjana Khan necklace, TOOTSIES / bangle bracelets, borrowed / Chanel handbag

Houston Style Bloggers whom I got to hang out with at the #BLOGGERCRUSHxTOOTSIES party: Adored by AlexGirl Around TownHigh Heels and HandlebarsBeautyNowSunday Beach,  Sannam & Style,

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A huge thank you to our awesome sponsors…

Hair: Azur West| Makeup: Veronica Hurtado | Location: TOOTSIES | Clothing: BCBG via TOOTSIES | Macarons: Petite Sweets | Party Favors: Twistband | Confetti: The Confetti Bar | Garland & Balloon: homemadexojules |