Monday, October 7, 2013
Friday, October 4, 2013
Happy Friday, friends—and happy first weekend of October! This is totally my favorite month of the year: The weather here in Florida finally starts to turn (which means being outside isn't face-meltingly awful) and it's acceptable to eat pumpkin everything. Totally awesome.
What are your plans for the weekend? On Saturday I'm going to a lovely friend's baby shower (so many friends are pregnant right now!), but I have no real plans for the rest of the weekend except for a beach walk and a dip in the Gulf with my bestie Kate. (That's also one of the best things about living here at this time of year: The weather cools off enough to where we Floridians notice a marked difference in temperature, but it's still basically beach weather for the rest of the country. We may not get to go apple-picking, but we can still swim in the ocean.)
Also, a quick housekeeping note: Sometime in the next two weeks, I'm going to be transitioning Pink O'Clock from Blogger to Wordpress. I use Wordpress at work all day, every day, and while I love Blogger—I've been writing here for five years!—Wordpress offers some design and posting options that I want to take advantage of. Until then, though, posting won't change here, and I'll let you know when the new site is live so you can adjust accordingly. Also, if any of you have made the transition from Blogger to Wordpress, I'd love your notes! I work in digital media so I feel pretty confident making the switch from both a tech and content standpoint, but tips and tricks are always appreciated.
So there you have it! New month, new site. Also, here are three great links for your reading pleasure this weekend:
This video of a girl quitting her job went viral, but in case you haven't seen it, it's worth the watch. Also, it makes me want to dance. (Make sure to watch her former employer's response, too.)
I love Mindy Kaling. Her show is cute and funny, and she is just a pleasure.
Speaking of TV, Homeland is back and this interview with Damian Lewis is just a good read.
Also, in case you missed anything here this week: A pretty photo of the beach, homemade chai tea, talking about my hair (again, some more) and the best banana bread ever.
Have a great weekend and I'll see you back here on Monday! xoxo
Thursday, October 3, 2013
So, this banana bread was fully ready to begin its life as a vegan—and then I saw Joy the Baker's recipe for bourbon-spiked banana bread with chocolate chunks on A Cup of Jo, and all my good intentions flew right out the window.
Let me begin by saying that I always have a ton of overripe bananas laying around the house—I buy them in bunches, but because I prefer them on the green side, I never seem to be able to eat them before they get to the point where I don't like them anymore. (This is a decidedly first-world problem.) So when I have extra time, I like to make banana bread.
Awhile back, I found a recipe for a vegan, cake-like banana bread on Olivia's lovely blog that I remember thinking was really good, but when I sat down to make banana bread this week, I couldn't seem to find it again since the link to her original post was broken (and I never posted the full recipe in my own archives). And then I saw Joy's recipe, and, well, the rest is history.
This banana bread comes together so simply: Butter and sugar are creamed together, eggs are beaten in, and then bananas, bourbon and a little lemon juice are added. Once everything is combined, you add a couple cups of flour and fold in chocolate chips and walnuts, pour the batter into a prepared loaf pan and bake for 45 minutes to an hour. You're going to want to have a piece of this as soon as it comes out of the oven, but trust me: Wait until it cools, or even let it sit out overnight so that the flavors have a chance to develop. It's perfect with a huge cup of coffee or chai tea.
Here's the full recipe if you'd like to try it yourself. I promise it will make you—and, if you do what I do and bring it into work, your colleagues—very happy.
P.S. For the complete index of Baked! recipes, click here.
Photo via A Cup of Jo
Wednesday, October 2, 2013
I am not one of those girls who is super-attached to her hair, which I think is a good thing: There is a lot of other stuff I get worked up about, and my hair does not need to be part of that. Over the past couple of years, it's been really long, really short, mid-length, layered, un-layered, dyed ombre and dyed back to its natural color. I've never done anything really dramatic, like dye it blonde or chop it into a pixie, but my philosophy is basically, "It's just hair. It'll grow back."
That said, I have discovered that my hair looks best in a shoulder-length-or-slightly-above bob, and I've actually kept it that length for almost a year, which is a big deal for me. Unfortunately, something I have not yet discovered is exactly what to do from a styling standpoint: My impetus is always to straighten it, but my hair's naturally wavy texture plus the Florida humidity equals some interesting hair behavior on days when the weather's not perfect.
I'm going to see my stylist, Niki, soon, so I've been doing some Pinterest reconaissance, and I think for the first time ever I'm going to ask Niki to show me how to style my hair so that it looks good with waves as opposed to flat-ironing it into submission. Here are my inspiration photos.
Do you have a love/hate relationship with your hair? Do you put a lot of effort into it, or do you just let it do what it wants? And yes, I realize this post is 100 percent frivolous, but sometimes those are the most fun!
P.S. The other question I'm forever asking myself when it comes to hair: Bangs or no bangs?
Tuesday, October 1, 2013
I'm craving the comfort of autumn flavors in a big way right now, but let's be honest: The barometer is still hitting the high 80-degree mark here in good old Southwest Florida. So instead of pumpkin soup, I'm eating pumpkin yogurt (Trader Joe's brand, specifically—it's good). And instead of hot, spicy chai teas, I'm making iced (equally as spicy) ones, thanks to this wonderful recipe I found via For the Love of Chow.
All you have to do is bring water to a boil, remove it from heat and throw in a blend of spices (cardamom pods, whole star anise, whole cloves, orange zest, chopped fresh ginger, cinnamon sticks and nutmeg*) and tea bags (I used 10 bags of English Breakfast), let the whole thing sit for awhile, and then strain the resulting concentrate into a jar and squirrel it away in the fridge. I've been pouring equal parts chai concentrate and almond milk into a Mason jar over ice, and it's seriously my new favorite thing—especially on those hot days when I still want those fall flavors. Here's the full recipe.
P.S. I was somehow inexplicably (OK, maybe not so inexplicably considering I don't like it very much) out of nutmeg, and this recipe still turned out totally fine.
P.P.S. If the thought of buying tons of whole spices makes you balk, go to an Indian or Asian market—you'll be able to find big bags of them on the cheap!