Friday, October 31, 2014

Five on Friday {October 31, 2014}

Happy Halloween! How is everyone celebrating? I attended a fun masquerade cocktail party last night, and I have four Halloween parties that I'm hoping to stop by tonight (I'm getting tired just thinking about it - good thing I'm off from work today to enjoy the Halloween fun!). 


Today's Five on Friday is a little different, because I'm focusing on 5 things I love about Halloween:

ONE | The costumes

As a huge fan of crafting and glitter, Halloween is a fantastic excuse for me to indulge both of those passions in one, big, over-the-top ensemble! My favorite costume of all time was when I dressed as a Pageant Girl (and not just any old pageant wannabe - an Ultimate Grand Supreme, naturally!). For once, my petite stature worked to my advantage and I got to use my Bedazzler and glue gun to my heart's content. I was the proud costume contest winner of a bottle of Whipped Cream Vodka, so this was definitely the best decision ever.

Unfortunately, I've been so preoccupied lately that I've definitely slacked off in the costume department! While this year's get-up will be sadly lacking in homemade crafting touches, I'm determined that it will still be glitzy and fun (check out our Instagram for today's costume updates!).


TWO | The parties

This grainy Instagram photo (apologies for the poor quality) was taken last year at a Halloween dance party headlined by an 80s cover band (I was dressed as a present, and joined by a crazy cat lady, an 80s girl, and Wonder Woman). This year, I'll be hitting up that same party and 3 others along the way - I love how there are always so many fun options on Halloween and how you can pretty much count on meeting some crazy characters everywhere you go! There's just something about being in a costume that seems to make people bolder.


THREE | The mystery 

I love seeing what people choose to dress up as, and then coming to my own conclusions about how near or far that persona is to their normal, every day life. (And if you're in the mood for another mystery, there's always the murder mystery variety).


FOUR | The candy

I mean, clearly this does not need any explanation...just look at those cute little pumpkins and monster eyes!


FIVE | That it's FRIDAY!
Halloween falling on a Friday this year means there is no fear of a curfew or an alarm clock, so live it up, step into someone else's shoes for the night, and have a blast! Oh, and also, enter our October breast cancer awareness giveaway before it ends tomorrow!
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xoxo
B

Thanks to our gals AmandaJennieKarliClare, Rebecca, Katie, Natasha, and Lauren for hosting today's link-ups!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Halloween Dessert Round-Up


Even though we're well past the appropriate age for trick-or-treating, Halloween is still a fantastic excuse for us to indulge in some yummy sweets! We've rounded up some of our favorite Halloween dessert recipes that we've previously posted, and we're currently deciding which ones to enjoy on the big day tomorrow. And true to what you can expect from our usual posts, several of these Halloween desserts are adult liquid refreshments :) Enjoy!








Which one of these yummy TSN desserts will you be trying out tomorrow?

xoxo
B & M

Linking up with Morgan!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Black and Orange Dotted Halloween Mani


If you spend any time on Pinterest, you’ve likely come across tons of fun Halloween manicures in the recent weeks.  I find myself pinning these like crazy, but when it comes time to actually do my nails, I never actually try these fun ideas out!  So after lusting after many a nail pinspiration, I decided it was time to finally try my hand at a Halloween inspired manicure, just in time for this Friday!

Since nail art really isn’t my strong suit, I decided to keep it pretty easy by doing a mix of colors, along with a polka dotty accent nail.  To create this look, I selected two of my favorite Rescue Beauty Lounge polishes from their latest Blogger Collection– NailsandNoms, a shimmery orange microglitter, and Fashion Polish, a glitzy black microglitter.  


I decided to paint every nail orange, with the exception of my pointers, which I did in the black.  After two coats of each, I used my Butter London dotting tool (on the smaller end), and dipped in a pure black polish.  For this, I used Nars Kata.  


Then I carefully dotted onto my ring finger of each hand.  After letting dry, I applied my favorite top coat, CND Super Shiney, and viola – instant Halloween nails!  


I love the fun and festive look and was impressed with just how easy it was to do!  I definitely recommend picking up a dotting tool if you are a fan of nail art since it made it so much easier.  What are your favorite Halloween mani looks?

Excited to be linking up with ShannaWordless Wednesday, and Morgan!
xoxo

-M 

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Gingersnap Pumpkin Ice Cream Sandwiches

So let's just start by addressing the elephant in the room - I'm fully aware that I have no business calling this a "recipe."


Now that we've covered that, I'm going to fill you in on a simple dessert that is always a crowd-pleaser at my parties. You guys know that I'm all about easy food, and these gingersnap pumpkin ice cream sandwiches are no exception.


Simply head to your local Trader Joe's, pick up some pumpkin ice cream (soooo yummy) and scoop it onto a gingersnap (which you will also purchase at Trader Joe's). Slap another gingersnap on top, roll the outside edges in autumn sprinkles, and place in the freezer until you are ready to consume them (I recommend freezing them for at least 4 hours to let the sandwiches meld together).

Aaaaand...that's it! Couldn't be easier, right?

I know these simple steps sound too good to be true, but these little guys really are the perfect two-bite dessert. The spicy gingersnap is a great addition to the seasonal pumpkin ice cream, and the best part is that you can swap out the flavors and experiment with all different kinds of cookies and ice cream. Some of my other favorite flavor combinations include double chocolate chip cookies/mint chocolate chip ice cream, sugar cookies/caramel ice cream, and chocolate chip cookies/chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream.


What's your favorite easy "recipe" for entertaining?

xoxo
B

P.S. Don't forget to enter our giveaway!

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Linking up with EmilyJennifer JuniperEmilyKaryn, KristenEmilyMandyMaryJessica, and Mandy!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Weekending + GIVEAWAYS {October 27, 2014}

What a fun-filled, jam-packed weekend! I'm pretty exhausted since I was constantly on the go all weekend, but it's a small price to pay!

FRIDAY
Friday night was spent at a bar downtown celebrating my sweet friend Emma's birthday. She has a longstanding tradition of posing with mini pumpkins on her head on her birthday, so of course all of the party guests brought their own mini pumpkins to get in on that action.



SATURDAY

Our long-awaited blogger brunch finally occurred on Saturday! M and I had such a blast hanging out with the lovely ladies from A Little Glitter, The Kari Diaries, Your Beauty Fix, and La Dolce Vita. We covered so many different topics over our pizza and prosecco, and while I'm pretty sure our waitress was very happy to see us eventually go, I'm sure we could have talked for many more hours!



As a small token of our appreciation for these other bloggers, M and I gave them a couple of small treats: mini champagne bottles glitzed up with gold glitter and a custom Blogger Brunch logo tag, plus these adorable taxi cookies from Eleni's.



After brunch, we hopped on the subway and went uptown to the Simply Stylist Conference.


We were gifted with quite the generous swag bag, and sipped some cocktails while chatting up the vendors and other bloggers.



I was super excited to receive a pair of Dittos jeggings with side zippers, which retails for $89!


When I returned home, there was one more surprise waiting for me - my Fall Beauty Swap products! My partner, Calli, sent me a package full of beauty goodies that I can't wait to start trying out this week.


I wound up dancing the night away in Hoboken with a few friends, then finished the night back in Manhattan at the cocktail lounge down the street from my apartment. I have no idea how I managed to drag myself out of bed on Sunday because I'm getting tired all over again just reading about Saturday's packed schedule!

SUNDAY
Sundays are best spent with those you love, so it makes perfect sense that I spent yesterday hanging with my true love, Michael Buble. He was filming his annual Christmas TV special at Radio City Music Hall, and I was lucky enough to snag some free tickets! Even though it's not even Halloween yet, I'm now totally in the Christmas spirit!


It was fantastic to see him perform from such a great seat, and his usual sassy banter definitely took center stage! Michael was joined by special guest Ariana Grande, who also gave a wonderful performance. I managed to sneak just one quick picture of the set...can't wait to see the final TV product!


And finally, we're starting this week off with a brand new giveaway! We've teamed up with Nina and some other fantastic bloggers to bring you some of our favorite pink products in honor of October being breast cancer awareness month.

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And don't forget, our Rituals Cosmetics giveaway ends tomorrow, so make sure you check it out:
xoxo
B

Linking up with Meg, LeeannKimberleeMolly, CrystalBiana, Anni, and Meghan!

Friday, October 24, 2014

Five on Friday: {October 24, 2014}

Happy Friday Gals!  Who's ready for the weekend?!  As usual, we're kicking things off with our five favorites of the week!

1 | NYC Blogger Brunch

I’m so, so excited for this weekend because Saturday is our NYC blogger brunch! We’re headed to a fabulous downtown spot that promises delicious food and endless drinks – combine that with some of our favorite NYC bloggers and what could be better?! We promise to give full details after the event, but be sure to check out all of the great ladies that’ll be in attendance and show them some fellow blogger love: Pam from A Little Glitter, Kari from The Kari Diaries, Allison from La Dolce Vita, Kristen from Your Beauty Fix, Nicole from A Simply Pretty Life, and Amna from Ask & Tell Beauty.

2 | Polish Obsession - Cirque Colors
And speaking of blogger events, if you follow us on Instragram, you may have seen some pics from the meetup we went to this past Tuesday, including some major nail polish eye candy from a great Brooklyn based brand, Cirque Colors. Not only were we able to sample the polishes with our very own manicure, but best of all, we got to meet and talk with the owner of the brand, Annie. The polish geeks in us were totally loving hearing all about her design process and about some of the upcoming colors they are working on. It was definitely a polish lover’s dream, and we are officially obsessed with this great line of colors!

3 | Favorite Pink Products

With October quickly coming to an end (side note – fastest month ever!), I wanted to spotlight Breast Cancer awareness month and highlight some of my favorite pink products.  These all benefit breast cancer awareness and research in some way, so if you are in the market for any of these items, this gives you all the more reason to do a little shopping and support a great cause!


4 | The Return of Bethenny Frankel to RHoNYC
I know this news broke last week, but I’m so excited for the return of Bethenny Frankel to the RHoNYC. We are full-on housewives fanatics here at TSN (#sorrynotsorry) but this past season of NYC was lackluster to say the least. So now that one of my very favorites of all time is coming back, she’s sure to bring some life back to the franchise and shake things up! Love her or hate her, she always tells it like it is, though she really can do no wrong in my book. Without a doubt she’s a true hustler and you have to admire all of the success she’s been able to spin from starting out on reality tv! Even though they are only just filming now, I can’t wait for this upcoming season to air!

5 | Last Weekend to Enter our Giveaway(!!!)

Have you entered our giveaway yet?! There’s only a couple of days left, so make sure to enter below to win this luxurious set of spa goodies from our friends at Rituals.

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What are you Gals up to this weekend?

Thanks to our gals AmandaJennieKarliClare, Rebecca, Katie, Natasha, and Lauren for hosting today's link-ups!

xoxo
- M

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Alfresco Autumn Brunch

My favorite kind of autumn day is the one where you can just throw on a light jacket and maybe a scarf, and leisurely stoll through the streets admiring the pretty leaves and all of the festive fall colors. As much as I relish throwing on my leopard print Snuggie and curling up in front of the fireplace, I really love a crisp fall day where you can soak up the sun and enjoy the great outdoors.


Add good friends, prosecco, and a pile of gourds to this equation, and you basically have my recipe for the perfect October Sunday. Luckily for me, this is exactly the kind of ideal fall day that I enjoyed when I recently hosted an alfresco autumn brunch on my patio.


I've mentioned before that I always try to take full advantage of hosting on my private patio since that kind of space is such a rarity in NYC apartment living, and also that my friends and I gather together each month for a Brunch Club outing. October was my turn to host, so I invited everyone over to my patio for a potluck barbecue. Since everyone was bringing a dish to share, I was able to focus less on the menu and turn my attention to the decor.


Ever since I came upon these mini pumpkins on sticks at my local Trader Joe's, I knew that they were my new favorite fall decoration. I used full sticks as table decor, and then cut pumpkins off the sticks and placed one as a paperweight on each napkin. The napkins were a lucky clearance find at my local Marshall's, and they perfectly suited the theme!


When I'm casually hosting a few friends at home, I usually opt for disposable tableware (sorry, but I don't have a dishwasher!) so I tried to jazz up things up a bit by using raffia to tie the utensils.


For a rustic place setting, I cut rectangles out of some cardstock scraps, hand-printed each name with a red marker, and cut springs of oregano from my patio garden which I attached with clothespins that I had painted with orange glitter.


I usually keep my patio table somewhat bare, but this time I wanted to add a kraft paper runner to tie in the rustic theme. I measured my kraft paper, cut it to size, and then used orange glitter paint to hand-stamp a polka dot pattern. I finished the table arrangement with the pumpkin sticks, white pumpkins, and a tall fall flower arrangement.


Of course, the best part of any potluck gathering is the wide variety of food, and we definitely had quite the bounty.


Our grilled entrees were accompanied by a huge range of side dishes, salads, and accouterments - definitely the perfect lazy Sunday feast!


We kept the drinks relatively simple with pumpkin pie cream welcome shots and mimosas, but some Hipster Ale snuck onto the table (probably from Brooklyn!).


Our desserts pretty much stuck to classic fall flavors, as you can see from these gingersnap pumpkin ice cream sandwiches.


Oh, and clearly our famous pumpkin dip had to be included as well.


Overall, it was a pretty casual Sunday gathering that took full advantage of the beautiful weather and seasonal flavors. Thanks to everyone bringing a dish to share, I was able to focus more on the fun crafts (which I love) instead of spending way too much time in the kitchen - I highly recommend divvying up these tasks when getting together with a large group of friends so you can remove some of the planning stress and just enjoy each other's company!


How do you feel about an outdoor brunch in October? Are you happy to extend your outdoors time as long as possible, or would you prefer to curl up under a cozy blanket instead?

xoxo
B

P.S. Don't forget to enter our Rituals giveaway!

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