Category Archives: five things friday

five things friday: on the verge of turning 29

So, I’m turning 29 tomorrow, which is pretty crazy to me. In celebration of getting older and hopefully also wiser, here are a few things I love at the moment:

I’m a huge fan of Daniela Andrade’s music. Gotta show some love for a fellow Daniela and Latina, after all. Her cover of Regina Spektor’s “Us” is so, so good:

I just recently discovered local jewelry studio, Mineralogy and I sorta obsessed with her pieces:


Theresa’s custom work is also really beautiful. These are a just a few pieces I would definitely splurge on and buy for myself (clockwise from left): white topaz teardrop ring, diamond solitaire necklace, chrysoprase and druzy cuff bangle, and grey druzy gold stud earrings. For those of us in Chicago, Mineralogy now has a a storefront in Ravenswood. Otherwise, you can check out the shop online.

Although I have plenty of artwork and a limited amount of wall space in my new apartment, I love Luke Gram’s art prints. If and when I’m in the market for more prints, he’ll be the first I buy from:

The weather in Chicago is FINALLY warming up, so I’m making the effort to try new paleta recipes. Mashable put together a great list of coffee-based paletas and I definitely need to make the ones with dulce de leche:


And last but certainly not least, I randomly stumbled onto this art project in Mexico and really, really love it:


The Mexican government asked the Germen Crew, a youth organization that specializes in grafitti and street art, to revitalize the Palmitas neighborhood in Pachuca, a town northeast of Mexico City. There’s even more photos and a video of their work here. I think this such a beautiful, brilliant idea and the community has had such a positive response.

As turning 29 isn’t incredibly significant (other than this is my last year in my 20s), I’m keeping it low-key and doing dinner and drinks tomorrow night. Maybe the big 3-0 will call for an actual celebration. Have a good weekend!


five things friday – nov 20th

To give you an idea of how much I’ve been procrastinating when it comes to my blog, I have been putting off this Five Things Friday post since Oct. 17th. YIKES. But here I am, making a little effort since I finally feel like I have some time to do so.

I’m realizing that writing for myself only happens on a rare instance these days and I want to try and battle against that. Not too long, I wrote pretty much everything down and these days, I hardly make the effort. Sure, I tweet and post pictures on Instagram but I’m not archiving thoughts and memories like I used to. I probably won’t ever get to the same consistency again, but I’ll still try.

So what I have I been up to? Wedding planning has been a constant for the last couple of months; we’ve actually locked down our date, venue, and caterer already, so I feel pretty accomplished. I could go into more details on all that, but I’ll save that for another day.

I’ve also been gearing up for my family’s visit (they get in on Monday morning!) and Christmas shopping. I really love celebrating Christmas. Our tree will go up next Friday, I’ll scan Black Friday sales (but I shop from the comfort of my own home), and prepare to bake an obscene amount of goodies over the next couple of weeks. Since I’ll be in Chicago this year, I’ll most likely be putting together little care packages for all my friends filled with cookies and cupcakes since my extended family won’t be around to eat everything I bake.

Alright, now to the point of this post! Five things I’m currently loving:

(1) I’m sort of obsessed with trying and/or making delicious-sounding fall cocktails. I’ve bookmarked so many pages that there’s no possible way I’ll get around to making all of them, but these two are the must-haves at the top of my list:


I love making sangria. I have a go-to recipe I always use but this autumn sangria made with apples, pomegranates, and figs sounds too good to pass up. And this spiced pear and bourbon cocktail is something I know my whiskey-loving fiance would enjoy. For even more fall cocktails, check out the lists put together by Glitter Guide and The Everygirl.

Since the holidays are around the corner, hot chocolate is another staple in my apartment. Why I love my usual recipe–a tablet of Abuelita chocolate, skim milk, and a peppermint stick–this hot chocolate guide from SheKnows is awesome enough to inspire me to try something new:


It doesn’t end there though! They also have a few choice recipes to choose from, including red velvet hot chocolate. All this is enough to inspire me to try making my own marshmallows as well.

I’m really excited to go check out Warby Parker’s first frame studio in the Midwest, which is right here in Chicago (in Lincoln Park to be exact). The space looks so cute and they’re offering free portrait sessions, which I definitely need to take them up on. I just bought my 2nd pair of frames from WP recently but Alex is in need of new frames himself, so he’ll be my excuse to go check out their storefront. :)


Learn more about the store here; they’re located at 837 West Armitage Ave.

So if you’re like me, you’ve come to associate the song “God Only Knows” (originally by The Beach Boys, of course) with the airport scene from Love Actually. Dorky, I know BUT it’s one of my favorite holiday movies (#1 is Elf because it’s amazing) and when I found out about the BBC’s version filled with tons of artists (Lorde, Elton John, Florence and Machine, Sam Smith, and even Dave Grohl), I immediately loved it:

(5) Last but definitely not least, I legitimately cackled when I saw this on tumblr yesterday:


For those who might not get the reference, it’s one of many random lines from Paul Rudd’s ridiculous character in the movie Forgetting Sarah Marshall. And because of Chicago’s notorious, ever-changing weather regardless of the season, I find myself singing this pretty regularly. So much so that when I showed this to Alex, he knew it was something I needed to own. It’s definitely on my Christmas wish list now!

This weekend is filled with preparing for my family’s arrival on Monday, and then a fun-filled week with them in town ending with Thanksgiving. Enjoy the holiday!

five things friday – august 8th

Hey there! So I’ve been 28 for a full week now. I can’t say that I feel any different, but it does feel weird to say I’m 28. For whatever reason, it seems like a much larger number than 27. Maybe it’s just me freaking out internally since 30 is just around the corner (yiiiikes). Anyway, I celebrated my birthday with my closest friends and delicious drinks (like a blueberry margarita, which was SO GOOD). I had wanted to post this last week, but birthday shenanigans got into the way. And now, here are five things on a Friday:


I’m going to let you guys in on a secret: I don’t like baking pies. I have pie fear, in the sense that I believe if I try to bake a pie, it will not turn out well. I made an apple pie once, with sub-par results. I’m not sure if it was the crust or the filling, but I didn’t love it and have avoided making them since. However, I recently discovered an equally delicious pie alternative: galettes. You guys, how did I not know about galettes until just now? Seriously, they’re so much easier to make and don’t require the top crust layer (which I think has also played a role in my pie-related downfall). Last weekend, I made this peach galette and looooved it. The recipe calls for either vegetable shortening or coconut oil in the crust; do yourself a favor and go the coconut oil route. It’s much better for you, I promise.


I stumbled onto this website the other day and it’s such a cool concept, especially for those of us who might not be naturally gifted crafters. Darby Smart has a variety of craft project to choose from and they provide you with all the materials. Their projects range from easy to advanced, so you can make anything from a terrarium to your own gin (seriously). It’s definitely worth checking out!


I really loved The Avengers when it came out (my undying devotion to Joss Whedon probably helped in that) but I was also a big fan of The Guardians of the Galaxy. I typically avoid watching movies during their opening weekend, especially big blockbusters like this one. But Alex and I, along with his sister, spontaneously decided to squeeze it in last Saturday. It also helped that our favorite theater has recently renovated, so they offer leather recliners and assigned seating. Seriously though, GO WATCH IT. Such a fun movie; it also helps that it doesn’t have any of the painful dialogue in other summer blockbusters (I’m looking at you, Michael Bay).


Fact: I love local breweries in Chicago. I’ve been trying a lot new beers from Pipeworks and Spiteful Brewing, both of whom are known for doing creative, small batches of beer, the majority of which are just a one-time thing. This past week, I had Surrounded by Friends, With Machetes from Pipeworks, Goddamn Chocolate Banana Pigeon Porter and Worst Commuter Belgian Tripel from Spiteful. In case you didn’t notice, both breweries also tend to come up with giggle-worthy names for their beers.

And finally, I leave with my latest summer jam: Cool Kids by Echosmith. It’s a fun indie pop song I’ve been listening to pretty much nonstop.

Enjoy the weekend! I know I will.

five things friday – may 9th

Another Friday, another five things post! I really am attempting to make this a somewhat regular thing. So without further ado, let’s get this started:

So remember my whole treat yoself post? I’ve actually managed to stick to that, in small, minimal purchases. But I recently splurged on something that I’m currently considering a very early birthday present to myself:


I pre-ordered the Everpurse Mini a couple of weeks ago and I’m so, so excited to get it this summer. I’ve written about Everpurse before and I kept putting off investing in one. When I heard about the Mini, I realized that this would be perfect for me because I totally need to charge my phone on the go and I’m in dire need of a new wallet. My current wallet, which was actually a birthday present I bought myself when I was 23, is about the same size. I ordered mine in teal because it’s easily my favorite color. The low price I ordered mine for is no longer available, but you can still pre-order the Mini if you’re interested.


Guys, Alex and I really love Anthony Bourdain. We’ve pretty much watched all his shows (No Reservations, The Layover, and now Parts Unknown) and Alex has read all his books. Now Bourdain has gone and cemented my admiration of him with this post about Mexico. I love the amount of respect and admiration he has for Mexican food and culture, and how he’s not afraid to call out America’s attitude towards its southern neighbor. His most recent episode of Parts Unknown takes place in Mexico City (there are clips up on CNN’s website). While the D.F. only gives a peek at what life was and continues to be like in Mexico today, it still shows that Mexico, despite the strides its made in the last few years in the face of danger and civil war-like situations, has a very long way to go.

This video has been everywhere lately but I feel compelled to share it here as well. ‘Look Up’ is a spoken word short film that talks about how consumed we are by technology today. And you know what? I’m TOTALLY guilty of this sometimes. It’s honestly become a tick; I’ve picked up and started scrolling through my phone without even realizing it. I do it when I’m bored or distracted, or even when I’m out with people. I love my phone, social media, and tech today as a whole, but I do think that it can be consuming at times. I definitely need to start paying more attention when I’m with my friends or out to dinner. Alex and I are going to get sushi tonight and enjoy the lovely weather we’ve been having, so I know that’s a place to start. I’ll leave my phone in my bag for once instead of having it within reach on the table.


[image courtesy of buzzfeed]

Although I’ve still been consistently baking my own granola (at least twice a month because it’s so freakin’ easy to do), I’ve been looking to mix up my daily breakfast. One of my new favorite things (which I actually just had for breakfast this morning) is overnight oats. I toss all the ingredients into a mason jar before bed, top with fruit in the morning and enjoy at work. I’ve been trying a few variations, including a recipe from Lauren Conrad, but my go-to version is: 1/2 cup of soy milk, 1/2 cup of oats, 1-2 teaspoons of chia seeds, and then add a handful of blueberries, banana slices, and a spoonful of peanut butter in the morning to top it off.

Last but not least, my latest music obsession: Lorde. I can’t stop listening to Glory and Gore; it’s easily my favorite of her singles. A close runner-up: Ain’t It Fun by Paramore.


five things friday – april 11

Oh hey there. Lately, I’ve been in a bit of writing slump, so I’ve been looking to other blogs for some inspiration on what kind of posts to create. One of the most common ones I’ve always enjoyed is Five Things Friday, so I’ve decided to jump on the bandwagon. This way, I can share a mix of random stuff like recipes/food, music, other blogs, and anything else I love at the moment all in one post. Does that make me a lazy blogger? Possibly. ANYWAY.


[photo courtesy of The First Mess]

Cauliflower as rice. Ok, I know what you’re thinking: Rice is already delicious, why would I replace it with cauliflower? I know, I know. But hear me out! I’ve discovered that cauliflower is pretty much the most versatile vegetable ever. When cooked properly, it takes on the appearance and texture of rice, and of course is really, really yummy. Also: it’s super low in calories, while rice is unfortunately not. My favorite dish so far as been ginger fried cauliflower rice from A Cozy Kitchen. Alex and I have even made cauliflower crust pizza that is really amazing as well. This recipe for “rice and beans” from The First Mess is definitely next on our list of dishes to make.


New flats. As spring-like weather has begun to grace us with its presence this week, I’ve finally been able to bust out these flats I bought at Target. Once I see a pair of cute shoes I like, I tend to buy them immediately lest they sell out. Case in point: I may or may not have driven to the suburbs once to find a pair of boots I really, really wanted. True story… maybe. So I’ve been breaking in these shoes this week and have already gotten a few compliments from my co-workers. It also helps that they’re super comfy. If you’re looking for a cute new pair of shoes, I can’t recommend these enough.


New music from Nickel Creek and Copeland. Not one but TWO bands that were on hiatus/broken up that I’ve always loved are putting out new albums. Nickel Creek’s new album A Dotted Line is now available, with the song above as one of the tracks. As for Copeland, I saw their farewell show in Austin in 2010 and was so bummed that it would be the first and last time I would hear their music live. But on April 1st (of all days), they announced plans for a new album, Ixora. Once it was safely established that they weren’t joking, I got really excited and pre-ordered the digital download.



[photo courtesy of 5 Rabbit]

5 Rabbit’s new taproom is open! I’m a big fan and supporter of all of Chicago’s breweries and 5 Rabbit is among one of my faves. Last summer, I was basically obsessed with their Paletas series. Their brewery store and tapoom has just opened to the public and I can’t wait to stop by. They’re out in Bedford Park, which is a bit of a trek for me but I’ll be in the southwest ‘burbs for Easter, so I just might talk Alex into taking a detour that weekend. :)



And last but definitely not least, GAME OF THRONES. Okay yes, only one episode has aired this season so far. BUT YOU GUYS. It’s so good. So much stuff is going down this season and I’m pretty sure more of my favorite characters are going to die but I’m still super excited. And let’s be real, there was also one major part in the season premiere that everyone loved: OBERYN MOTHER-EFFIN’ MARTELL. The Red Viper established immediately that he’s pretty awesome, quick on the draw, and is not fucking around. I can’t wait to see what trouble he causes for the Lannisters.

Have a great weekend! I’ll be back next week with a Geeky and Girly post, and possibly a weekend recap.