Tuesday, November 29, 2011

It's Begining To Look A Lot Like The Holidays

Now that Thanksgiving is over, all of the Holiday dinner and cocktail parties will begin.  To get you in the Holiday spirit, here are a few fun pictures of gorgeous dresses:

Oh no, Santa!  From Fashion Gone Rogue.
Pink Tulle Gown at Christmas (1950's) by Ceil Chapman.
Super Red Christmas, Elle Korea Nov. 2010.  Photographed by Hong Jang Hyun.  Model: Anabela Belikova.
A Glamorous Christmas Morning, Vogue France, Ed. 41.
Candid Kate Winslet and Gingerbread House, Elle US Nov 2010.
Ski Lodge Bunny; Photographed by Giampaolo Sgura for Vogue Italia December 2010.
Comfy Christmas Bed via Tumblr
12 Geese a Laying; Elle Korea Nov. 2010.
Christmas Vogue 2007

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Thanksgiving Survival Guide (Part II): Dinner, Prep, and Recipes

If you're anything like me, cooking Thanksgiving dinner stresses you out.  Deadlines, not enough oven space, and hungry people who missed lunch makes life in the kitchen feel more like a torcher chamber than something you should be giving thanks for.  So, to help you (and your family) make it through the day in one piece, grab yourself a glass of champagne with orange juice and follow my easy "How Make Thanksgiving Look Easy" guide.

Thanksgiving Table Decor

Instyle Magazine, Nov. 2011
EASY:  I found this article in Instyle Magazine and it makes setting the Thanksgiving table decor easy.  White plates, a festive table runner, and a simple vase with matching flowers is chic, time saving, and leaves room for the piles of food you're about to bring out.  Set it up the day before this way you won't have to worry about it while you're cooking on Thanksgiving day.
Pottery Barn, Fall 2011 Tablescape
HARDER:  If you're looking for something a little more intricate, try something like the picture above from Pottery Barn.  Add some candles and gourds on top of a festive table runner but make sure to leave space for the beautiful turkey that's coming in the center on the table.  If you decide to go with a theme, pick one for the whole house and stick with it.  Pottery Barn always has the best Holiday-ware with great pictures.  Here you can see they went with a rustic theme, equipped with antlers, an rustic looking wood table, and french-country looking china.  Go to their website for more information or for fun video's and  entertaining advice from the experts.  Click Here

TIP: Set the table the night before Thanksgiving day.  It really makes everything much easier.


Cooking Light Picture
Getting as much stuff made before the big day is the trick behind having a truly great Thanksgiving.  Appetizers, potatoes, stuffing, biscuits, cranberry sauce, and desserts can all be made the day before and then warmed in the oven right before Thanksgiving dinner.  You can even divide the work and make the potatoes, cranberry sauce and desserts two days before (on Tuesday) and store them in the refrigerator until it's time to eat.    Here is how I like to break it down:

Tuesday (or night), make:
  • Mashed potatoes (unless it's instant, then make Thursday)
  • Sweet potato casserole
  • Cranberries
  • Pies/Desserts
  • De-Thaw Turkey (about 1hr for every pound) (and FYI- you should estimate1lbs/person)
Wednesday, make:
  • Appetizers, 
  • Some of the Stuffing,
  • Biscuits, 
  • Rub turkey with spices
  • Set table
Thursday, make:
  • Turkey
  • Stuffing
  • Steamed veggies
  • Mashed instant potatoes
  • Warm biscuits, potatoes before dinner; and pies/desserts during dinner (just before you sit down, pop them in the oven on a low temperature, 150-200F).

Thanksgiving Menu

Thanksgiving Plate with all the right stuff.  From Vagas Buzz.

Not only do I like to keep Thanksgiving dinner fuss free, I also like traditional Thanksgiving food.  So, my Thanksgiving meal is not complete with out Turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, sweet potato casserole, cranberry sauce, biscuits, and gravy.  Here's the menu I like to follow:

Appetizers (click the link for the recipe):
Appetizer, Veggie/Relish Tray: Pickles, carrots, black olives, salami, cheese and dip. Picture from Here.

Main Dish/Entree (click on each item for a link to my favorite recipe):
Perfect Thanksgiving Dinner by the Fire.  Picture from Agwired
  • Store-bought Pumpkin Pie
  • Pecan Pie (most similar to my pecan pie recipe)
  • Store-bought Vanilla Ice Cream

Salted caramel and vanilla baked cheesecake, by Donna Hay.  Click Here for the recipe.

More Help

For more non-traditional recipes and menus, go to the Food Network.  Click Here.

For more Preparation or Turkey help, Click Here.

For Thanksgiving Table & Home Decor go to Pottery Barn (they also have recipes, videos, invitations, and playlists--Amazing site!).  Click Here.

Leftover Turkey Super Sandwich Recipe, Click Here.

Hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Much Love,   

Monday, November 21, 2011

Thanksgiving Survival Guide: Everything You Need To Stay Fabulous

Because this week is a short week (hurray!!!) I will be stuffing as much information as I can into two posts.  Today's post is about everything you need to stay looking fabulous.  Tons of pictures are always taken during the holidays, and Thanksgiving is no exception.  Therefore, I've included everything from what to wear/ideas for what to wear (for him and her) on Thanksgiving, to beauty, and dieting--this post will have you covered! Tomorrow will be about food (recipes, planning, and prep), decorating the table, and entertaining.

Karl Lagerfeld's (The designer behind Channel) Fabulous Thanksgiving Dinner with Models.  By Danny at Igor + Andre.

Mens Thanksgiving Style

For menswear on Thanksgiving, I suggest going with something classic.  When I think classic I usually think of JFK or Sean Connery/James Bond.  If you need help with ideas the ones above are classic and fresh look.  They exude a laid-back but still casual and put-together look that's perfect for the holiday and crisp weather.  I found these looks at Express and J. Crew, but you could also probably find something similar in  your closet. 

 Womens Thanksgiving Outfit Ideas

Medi-Skirts; Leather Shorts (add cream or brown matching tights underneath to stay warm); Chunky sweaters; Red pants; Fur vest; "Nerd" faux glasses; and just a cute skirt outfit--All perfect and fashionable Thanksgiving looks.

Every year before I go home I am confronted with the dilemma of what to wear on Thanksgiving.  I want to wear something warm, comfortable and "Thanksgiving-like," but I still want to be stylish and chic.  I look through the internet, magazines and catalogs for what feels like hours to find the perfect Thanksgiving outfit.  So, this year I thought I'd help you out by putting all my favorite looks all in one place (I don't know why more sites can't do this?!).  Above is my selection of fashionable and seasonal outfit ideas, from casual to dressy, for Thanksgiving.  And, below is my favorite "Jenna's Picks" for Thanksgiving from the J.Crew Catalog, November 2008, because it is so autumnal and classic.  Now that you have some great Thanksgiving outfit ideas, the trick is to find similar looking pieces in  your closet!
Jenna Lyon's Picks from J.Crew's Catalog, November 2008.

 Thanksgiving Beauty

Kate Bosworth, Instyle Magazine, Nov. 2011.
If you're looking for a fun way to amp up your make-up for Thanksgiving, red lipstick is the way to go (a la Kate Bosworth above).  Not only is it everywhere right now, it will also complement the reds, browns, and oranges in your Thanksgiving outfit.

EXPERT TIP: to keep your lipstick in place on your lips, make sure you use a red lip-liner to line and fill-in where you want your lipstick to stay.  Then lightly add a swipe or two of lipstick to even out the color and add moisture to your lips.


Allure Magazine, Oct. 2010. Photographed by Miles Aldridge.
The holidays is when most people gain weight.  Halloween was the first battle, next comes Thanksgiving.  An entire day reserved for gobbling up mounds of turkey, stuffing, and starches, followed closely by back-to-back December cocktail parties.  To arm  yourself for these gastly days, a little planning and a few tricks can go a long way.

1.  Cut 100 to 300 calories a day in advance. This can be as little as not having cheese on  your sandwich for lunch, or swapping that latte for black coffee or tea instead.  This way you don't have to resort fat-free stuffing and Tofurkey for Thanksgiving dinner.  Just remember to control your portions of the real stuff.

2. Avoid Snacking.  One study found that 9% of Thanksgiving calories are consumed in smack form before the actual meal.  So, if you're cooking Thanksgiving dinner start cooking right after breakfast when you're not hungry or chew on gum while you're cooking to avoid the urge to eat.  If you're not cooking, try to stay out of the kitchen or again, chew gum to avoid snacking.

3.  Avoid Binge Eating.  Don't not eat all day.  That's just setting yourself up for bingeing during dinner.  To avoid binging, eat a low-calorie breakfast and snack on veggies later if you get hungry. 

4.  Toss the Heavy Leftovers.  Once Thanksgiving dinner is over get rid of all the heavy food like the desserts and potatoes, to avoid turning a one time indulgence into a week's worth of excess.  Keep veggies and turkey to eat with a salad later in the week.

-Diet Tips from Allure Magazine, October 2010.

So, there you have it!  Everything you need to stay fabulous this Thanksgiving.  Hope it helped.  How do you stay fabulous for Thanksgiving?

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Sunday Indy Image

View of Indianapolis skyline from Lucas Oil Stadium, home of Colts football.
Hope you're having a wonderful weekend!

<3 Indy-Babe

Friday, November 18, 2011

Indy Weekender: Yatz

Yats, a local Cajun Creole place, has people raving.  With a mixture of neo-psychedelic paintings, jazz music and heaping plates of jambalaya and etoufee, it's no wonder why this place is always busy with happy costumers.  Yats' daily menu usually consists of 6-10 dishes, which cost between $5.75 and $6.75 for a combination. The menu is a chalk board at the counter which list the day's menu items.  After you order, you pick up your food at the counter as well.  There is no wait staff, but the food is always fresh because of its' rotating menu.  When I went to the Yats, I went to the one on Mass Ave. where I ordered spinach and mushroom etoufee.  It was good, but my friends told me their jambalaya was amazing.  So, if you can eat shellfish, I would suggest ordering the shrimp jambalaya.  Here are pictures of the place, the food, and the customers at Yats:

Yats' counter where you order your food.  See the chalk board menu on the wall behind the guy?...
Inside Yats on Mass Ave.
Yum!  Our food is ready.  Pick up at the counter.
Jambalaya = devoured! Spinach and mushroom etoufee = still eating.

Yats customers (Everyone was in Halloween costumes the weekend before Halloween.  I have no idea what was going on...but I wanted to be invited. haha  Ps. Luv her pink ruffled top!).
Neo-psychedelic art on the walls and tables.
The front of Yats on Mass Ave.
For more information go to Yats' website at:  http://www.yatscajuncreole.com/

Yat's has 4 locations:
YATS ON 96TH • 8352 E. 96TH ST. INDIANAPOLIS, IN  (317.585.1792)  


Thursday, November 17, 2011

IU Men's Basketball (IU vs. Chattanooga)

Our friend always has the most amazing season tickets to Indiana University's Men's basketball games.  My boyfriend and I love basketball, so, whenever he asks us to go it's a "no-brainer."  The last game he asked us to a game was the IU vs. Chattanooga game Sunday, Nov. 13, 2011.  Coach Tom Crean, Cody Zeller (an freshman with great ball awareness), Jordy Hulles, Victor Oladipo & crew were all in attendance.  The game was awesome, but our seats were better.  Here are some pictures of  our front row seats:

IU Men's Basketball Coach, Tom Crean waiving "hello" to the fans. Picture taken by our friend Sarah.
IU and Chattanooga men's basketball teams warming up before the game.
The front of Assembly Hall (the basketball arena at IU)
Cook Hall at IU (right next to Assembly Hall).
Old IU Hoosier uniforms with "candy stripe" pants, at Cook Hall. 
Inside Cook Hall
Inside Cook Hall looking at the entrance into the building.
Love the interior design of the IU-red elevators in Cook Hall
IU logo lit-up inside Cook Hall
For more information on IU basketball Click Here.
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