21 October 2011

Friday Links You'll Like

Happy Friday! I hope the day finds you well and ready for the weekend ♥

-This week has been tiring, but eventful. On Monday, I went with my parents, sister, and Ari to the Pumpkin Spectacular at Roger Williams Park Zoo in Providence. It was a nice night, aside from me forgetting the sling. Lots of pictures to go through and post, I just haven’t had the time! Once I settle down to start on them, all I want to do is sleep.
Tonight is the Circa Survive concert, SO excited! The first time I saw them was October 2005, with Gabe. Now, it will be my second time seeing them, with Gabe, 6 years later. Weird how that works ;) Expect many photos from this as well.
Tomorrow I’m up early to help run a vendor fair at my sister Veronicas school; hoping that there are power outlets near where I’ll be, I’m planning on bringing my laptop to get some work done.
Sunday, broke.down! My best friend will be joining me and I’m hoping there is a good turnout for the event. Who doesn’t love Vw’s?!

Now on to the links you’ll like!

I’m loving these recycled engagement rings so much, I’m considering saving up for one myself just for the hell of it!

A great tutorial on reusing and decorating glass bottles and mason jars!

Got rough hands? Not after using this lemon sugar scrub! Love this idea, potential gift idea for Christmas?

Why we get mad

Doing this!

Interesting article on money and relationships

I NEED these paintings for my house: here and here

My mother sent me this article this morning, and wow. So heartbreaking but such strength.

I love A Cup of Jo! She has many adorable, fun posts- like this one on kissing!

Would love to do this to my hair

How to reupholster a dining room chair

Have a wonderful weekend! xo

20 October 2011

What's on my iPod V.3

I haven't done one of these in over 4 months! Here are a few songs that I'm currently addicted to:

I Can Make a Mess- Something That Produces Results.
The cool thing about this song is that the lead singer from the Early November is the lead singer of I Can Make a Mess, and also has a solo project, Ace Enders. This is a re-make of one of Early Novembers best songs!
Honorable mention: Connected.

Feist-How Come You Never Go There
This song is classic Feist. It’s from her new album recently released this month, Metals. The album has a different feel from her previous ones, but definitely worth the time to listen.
Honorable mention: Bittersweet Melodies.

Deer Tick-Make Believe
If you can buy Divine Providence (album), or see them live, DO IT! You will not be disappointed. Deer Tick is from my state, Rhode Island, and they are awesome.
Honorable mention: Walking out the Door.

Matt Pond PA-Locate the Pieces
I’ve recently discovered Matt Pond PA within the last year, and I’m so glad I did! The lead singer is from New England (!), relocated to Pennsylvania, and started the band. From the album “Last Light”.
Honorable mention: People Have a Way.

City and Colour-Little Hell
This song is perfection. City and Colour is one of my favorite bands (who I am so lucky to be going to see in December!) and their new cd is just amazing.
Honorable mention: Northern Wind.

Maps + Atlases-Solid Ground
Great band, great music, awesome song! Ari loves this one :)
Honorable mention: Living Decorations.

Margot and the Nuclear So + So’s-Talking in Code
One of my favorite songs. I will recommend this song/cd to anyone that likes good music.
Honorable mention: Skeleton Key.

And finally, because I’m going to see them tomorrow night in Northampton, a flashback:

Circa Survive-Always Getting What You Want, from the album ‘Juturna’.

Enjoy loves!

17 October 2011


This past weekend was a nice mix of slow and fast. Thursday as you know, Gabe and I went to the Deer Tick show at the Met. I filled my memory card but the only salvagable ones are the photos below:

First band that played

Best photo of the night, Canon 50mm f/1.8 long exposure

Deer Tick!

On friday, I was supposed to see Aqualung play a set. Sadly I was tired from the night before, and the whirring lights + smoke filled room that is Twin River was not enticing to me. The night was spent laughing over Epic Mealtime skits and talking.

Saturday came too quickly, considering I had to crawl out of bed for work at 9am. Afterwards, before Gabe went to his tattoo appointment, we went for a short ride on his motorcycle- I seriously love that thing. It was chilly but refreshing. We went down a road popularly named "Res" (short for Reservoir Rd.) and hung out for a little while near the water. I ended up spending the night at home, making Banana ice cream and salted chocolate biscotti-like cookies :) Both came out great, except the ice cream is more of an Italian ice (that's okay with me!). *Recipes soon!*

Yesterday (Sunday) was a sleep late day! I took advantage of my completely empty full size bed and literally spread out for a few hours with a book. When my day finally took hold, I went on a little hike with Gabe at Joe's Rock in Wrentham, MA. It was gorgeous! We climbed to the top and took some photos. While we were up there, a man came huffing up the hill. He said to us, "6 months ago I wouldn't have been able to do this. Now look at me!" He had two knee replacements, of metal and plastic. Seeing the proud look on his face completely made my day. Anything is possible...

We came back to my apartment and hung around; Gabe made lunch for us and took a nap while I went through the weekends photos, more relaxation ensued... and then we made corn muffins! Sweet night to end a low-key weekend.

{He didn't want pictures taken haha}

Today, typical start to the week. Up late, car won't start, feeling sick at work. Oh, monday. Luckily I had and am going to have a great weekend to look forward to/ look back on. ♥

15 October 2011

Body Post Update!

Remember this post?

I've debated over and over about posting this series. I still feel as if I have a lot of work to go, and I am self conscious to the point where looking at photos of myself 5 months ago make me cringe and think, "I can't believe I let myself look like that!" So if anything, I'm posting this for more motivation.

Lately, I've been at a standstill between 103 and 106 lbs. Previously in April/May, I had gotten up to 120lbs!

My exercise intake has somewhat decreased since the summer, but I'm still walking whenever I can, doing some yoga here and there and just being outdoors.

Eating wise, I've been out of control! Recently, I've still been making sure my calorie intake isn't over what it should, but trying to cut back on sugars. This past week has been hell for me. All I have been craving is soda, chocolate, candy, fatty foods! I know if I start to deprive myself of it then the cravings will go away. But I can't help it. Damn you, work, for always keeping a full candy dish. It doesn't help that my face has been breaking out so bad because of all the junk.

Anyway, here's the update. Since May, I've been able to maintain a 15-17lb weight loss. I'm hoping to lose 10 more. Just 10 more and I'll be completely satisfied. I'm also only 5'l" tall. What seems like a lot of weight loss really isn't that much for my height.

May 2011:

October 10, 2011:

My problem areas are clearly my arms, legs and hips! Nomatter what I do, I feel like I'll never get to where I want to be with those areas. 10 more pounds gone by the end of November? Attainable goal, I think!

*Accepting guest posts! I would love to see/share more weight loss inspiration. Contact me through email- Sparkleee@msn.com

14 October 2011

{recipe} - Vegetable Sauce!

One week last night, I became frustrated while searching the internet for a decent homemade Vegetarian tomato sauce recipe.

*Side note: I had tried to make homemade sauce once before (English muffin pizza night with a few friends), and while it wasn't exactly a failure, I really had no idea what I was doing. It turned out to be "eh".

After maybe a half hour of browsing many sites, I didn't find any to pique my interest. I decided to try again, and this time I was determined to succeed.

Succeed I did! This recipe came out excellent, and I'm proud to say it's completely created off the top of my head. I've named it (very creatively ;) Vegetable Sauce. Enjoy!

Ingredients needed:
Butter/Spread (we use Earths Balance)
Red + Green Peppers
Garlic cloves
Spices (I used oregano+parsley)

I have a habit of peeling tomatoes, so that's what I did first, since it is the base of the recipe after all. Since it was just Ari and I eating, and I'm not much of a sauce person, I used 3 medium sized tomatoes, which was just enough to have a little bit left over (which was quickly eaten shortly after!)

Cut them all up into chunks!

I'm not a fan of chunky sauce, so after I cut the tomatoes up, I threw them in my Pampered Chef Food Chopper. *If you can get one, do it! I seriously use this all of the time.

Meanwhile, Ari snacked on an onion (her fave!)

After the tomatoes were all set, I used a small sauce pan to melt 3 tablespoons of butter. I added my tomatoes and let simmer while I got my vegetables ready to go.

I added the veggies and let simmer more while I cooked the pasta. Intermittently, I added a few pinches of organic flour to thicken it up.

Lastly, I added my spices, cooked for a few more minutes, and that was that!

This is an extremely customizable recipe, so have fun with it, and enjoy!

{100 Posts!+ My Life Lately}

After starting this blog in January, I never thought people would be interested in what I have to say as much as they are. This posts marks 100 posts since then, and I just want to say to all of you who read: You encourage me to continue posting, and the support I've received because of and on my blog is incredible, so I sincerely thank you for getting to know myself, Ari, and being a part of this journey!

I've been meaning to write, but things have been a little hectic this week. Between working later, taking care of Ari and trying to keep up with the house, I've been exhausted. I have so many things that need to be accomplished in the coming months! A few things I am looking forward to:

Oct 21, Circa Survive show
Oct 23, Broke.Down (VW show)
Nov 23, Ari's second birthday!
Dec 03, City + Colour show
Dec 27, my 21st birthday

Ari's second birthday is in about a month, and I have so many ideas swirling through my head! I haven't made up my mind completely on what we're going to be doing, but the party will be at home, and all the decorations will be (of course) homemade. My mother and I have been going back and forth, tossing around ideas and scouring the internet while we work. I am excited to start on the decor, but feeling a tiny bit overwhelmed; second-guessing myself on whether I'll be able to finish in time. I'm also leaning towards no presents this year, but I'll elaborate on that in the future.

Lately, I can say I am content with how life is. Instead of trying to control situations (bad habit), I am just letting things be. And I've been much happier because of it. It's taken me a little while, but being independent has changed me SO much, for the better. I don't have to worry about anything (unless voluntary) that doesn't pertain to Ari or myself. I can be picky with who I date, because I don't have to settle for anything less than what I want. I don't mind spending time alone anymore; in fact, I relish the time I have alone and have nowhere to be except snuggling in my bed. Basically, I don't NEED anyone/anything to make me happy. I am creating my own happiness, by doing things I love, surrounding myself with people I enjoy, and just being. Simplicity is key and I have a long way to go, but I'm okay with that.

Last night, Gabe and I went to see one of my current favorite listens, Deer Tick, at the Met in Pawtucket. It was a really nice night, laidback, my first show in over a year! The band was great, although we decided to leave a little while before the show ended. I did take a couple of photos but I didn't bring a tripod so the camera shake is kinda crazy, those will be posted soon enough!

To wrap up this post, here are a bunch of photos from over the past 3 weeks. I'm trying to stay up to date so hopefully this will be the last photo dump for a little while! Also, I am excited to soon share two new posts relating to series I have done previously; A delicious vegetarian recipe and a Body Post Update! Happy friday! :)

Trip to Tiverton/ Little Compton/ Sakonnet Yacht Club


Ari loves to dress up and play in the mirror!

Washing my car, I don't know why but I love this picture. Happiness?

My desk and bench in my room were both thrifted seperately (desk-$30, bench-$5). I sanded and painted both, reupholstered the cushion on the bench and replaced the hardware on the desk drawer. I love how they came out, but I'm thinking of repainting the desk a bright solid color and polyurethane'ing the top surface.

Thrifted side table- $5. I was planning on refinishing this, but I like the rustic, vintage vibe the green color and pocked wood gives. I cleaned it up and for now this table will stay the same

Two pillows I've recently sewn

Ari's morning bedhead

Fruits! (Looking for a good recipe involving Pomegranates, send 'em my way!)