Sour cream lemon pound cake combines rich, buttery pound cake with vanilla, lemon, and a tart blackberry glaze. The perfect, simple, summery cake for BBQs and parties!Continue reading “Sour Cream Lemon Pound Cake with Blackberry Glaze”
This watermelon gin fizz is perfect for summertime sipping! Pureed watermelon is muddled with fresh mint, floral gin, lime, and seltzer. Served on the rocks for the perfect summer cocktail.Continue reading “Watermelon Gin Fizz with Mint”
White peaches roasted in the oven with fresh ginger, honey, and vanilla. Serve baked peaches with plain Greek yogurt or vanilla ice cream.Continue reading “Baked Peaches with Honey & Ginger”
A PERFECT BLUEBERRY GALETTE WITH TENDER, BUTTERY CRUST, LEMONY, SPICED BLUEBERRY FILLING, AND HOMEMADE HAZELNUT FRANGIPANE!Continue reading “Blueberry Galette with Hazelnut Frangipane”
Five easy cocktails in a can that are perfect for the beach, BBQs, and more. Just mix a few ingredients into a can of sparkling water and you’re ready to party!Continue reading “Cocktails in a Can!”
Clearly, I’ve been having a moment with BLTs lately. This is the second BLT-related post in the past month, which some may claim is incredulous, but I think is completely justified since bacon + bread + in-season tomatoes = heaven. Also, can we take a moment to literally laugh out loud, because in that same Basic BLT post, I went on and on and on about how there are just some foods, such as BLTs, that should be left alone (I believe the direct quote was “BLTs should be BLTs and nothing more”) and then I turn around and turn a classic into a salad. Blasphemy. Who gave me this kind of power?
To make up for my intense hypocrisy, I may even forgive you if you decide to say, put something like turkey on your BLT, which I still believe is just a club sandwich, so if you’re going to get that far, you might as well add some good swiss to the mix. However, I do ask that you maintain your dignity while doing so. If I happen to come across a BLT utilizing ridiculous ingredients such curry powder or sauerkraut as an act of outright defiance against my Rule of Simplicity, we’ll have a problem here, people.
Since it’s Labor Day weekend a.k.a. probably the last BBQ weekend of the year (at least for us colder cities), I thought I’d share this salad recipe, which goes perfectly with Tri-tip and grilled corn, burgers, or brats. It only takes about 15 minutes to mix up, which leaves you plenty of time to enjoy your last late-night patio session of the summer before the fall creeps in. I’m already starting to miss summer and the fresh food that comes along with it, but I can’t wait to share some wonderful fall-inspired recipes that I’ve been testing lately. I hope you love pie, spices, and savory food straight out of the oven, because there’s plenty of that making its way to my little corner of the internet. Also, probably some good sweater and Tahoe pics, since you know I love sharing my fun trips and outfits with you all ♥ Stay tuned for more!
I hope you have an amazing Labor Day weekend with your friends and family!
XO Sara Lynn
*Song of the Day: Life Itself by Glass Animals
Lately, I’ve been in a major need for some change. A lot of frustrating/sad/difficult events have been happening in my life so I’m trying to take it as an opportunity to make myself happier and not let my anxiety take over. While a lot of these changes are not within my jurisdiction, I’m taking this time as an opportunity to focus more on my goals and the direction I am going with my life. I’m getting rid of anything I feel is toxic or not helping me progress toward my goals and focusing more on travel, music, food, and making friends.
Like any 20-something, I’m looking for success and happiness and love and adventure and any sign that I’m doing what I’m supposed to be with my life. This story is not new, and everyone experiences it, but that does not mean that we don’t struggle with our choices and chances either. At times, I shelter myself, not because I do not want to put myself out there, but because I’m perfectly happy being on my own. I’m working toward opening up and having more fun!
A few weeks ago, I spent the weekend at my aunt’s house to watch her puppies and have some time to relax by myself. It was nice to get away, watch movies by myself in my jammies, eat Thai food, and enjoy some fresh air with a beautiful view.
One of the nights, I decided to go out for a solo dinner after a particularly long day at work. I decided to wear this romper, which honestly, has been hanging in the back of my closet for the past year or so. When I first saw it, I fell in love with the print, and I actually thought it was a dress. I don’t usually wear rompers, but again, the print was amazing, so I tried it on and eventually bought it because it was on sale. I usually wear it with a skirt over it so the top acts as a shirt, but since I am trying new things, I decided to wear it as a romper and step out of the box. I will admit that this is not the biggest leap of courage, but sometimes small steps are better. At first I didn’t feel comfortable, but the more I wore it, the better I felt, especially with my favorite Lucky boots. It felt nice to wear something that I normally wouldn’t and take a “risk” with my fashion choices.
Getting away for a little while helped ease my mind, and I had a lovely weekend petting some cute pups (who you might notice as little blurs in some of these pictures. They were afraid of the sound of the camera timer, which was pretty funny, so they showed up as little blobs. Oops!). Taking pics with some of my aunt’s vintage furniture was really amazing as well – such a cool house to get pictures in! I’m looking forward to what the future has to bring, solo travels, and new opportunities, friends, and people.
Have a happy, relaxing weekend and be looking out for some exciting upcoming posts! I just got back from San Fran, and I have some fun stuff to show you all 🙂
Xo Sara Lynn
*Song of the Day: Please, Please, Please, Let Me Get What I Want by The Smiths
Summer has now officially approached in Reno. In my Vegas-days, I used to loathe summer and its dry heat that would exceed far past the low hundreds. Now living in Reno, the weather is a gamble, meaning I can be a little more friendly towards the summer months depending on the day. For instance, yesterday the high was 75*F, but tomorrow could be 105*. Luckily, I’m not too far from SF, which pretty much always has a low chill and Tahoe, which may be warm, but at least you can cool off in the melted-snow water. However, I’m a huge fan of BBQs, as I’ve mentioned in the past, and even though I’m working as both a marketing intern and barista, I’m taking this summer as an opportunity to eat plenty of good food, explore new Northern Nevada attractions, and not be in school for the first time in 3 years. Plus, my birthday is in July, so that’s always something I look forward to! I’m also stoked to try out some new BBQ recipes, starting off with a twist on classic summer Lemonade. Hello blackberry-mint limeade!
When it comes to the lemonade-limeade debate, I wholeheartedly lean towards the limeade side. Actually, I’m not really sure there is such a debate, but if there were I would always go Team Limeade. Now that it’s summer, I’ve decided to try out my own variations on limeade (and maybe even lemonade, we’ll see…), and I thought the perfect way to start off the limeade experiment would be to use a berry that’s not as highly recognized as its berry counterparts. I love how shiny and succulent blackberries are, and when they’re mixed into a limeade, it makes this beautiful fuchsia hue that would perfectly complement a BBQ. Also, I added mint, because I was feeling fancy.
Before I share the recipe, I will first start off with a confession, because I’m not perfect, and I’ll readily admit that
all the time in most circumstances, such as this one. For this recipe, I decided to use already bottled limeade. *gasp*, I know. From someone who really goes out of her way to not use prepackaged stuff, this may be slightly shocking. However, I can already find delicious, sweet, fresh-tasting limeade in the juice aisle at my local grocery, and I own no type of juicer whatsoever, so prebottled limeade it was. On the other hand, if you are one who feels so inclined to make their own limeade, I’ve found a recipe from a trusted source with good reviews here.
This limeade is refreshing and easily adaptable if you’d like to try another berry or herb. I prefer my limeade sweeter, so I use more syrup, but if you like yours a little more tart, I’d use less syrup or even muddle some blackberries and mint in the bottom of your glass and just use a tiny bit of syrup. Also, I used 3 mint leaves in my original recipe, and I found that the mint was very strong. I’d recommend using only 2 mint leaves so the blackberry flavors are noticeable. The mint can be very overpowering, but you can always add some straight to your drink if you want more of that flavor later!
Blackberry + Mint Limeade
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup blackberries
- 4 fresh mint leaves (or basil!)
- 2 liters limeade or lemonade
- 12 oz vodka optional
- In a small saucepan, combine the sugar, water, and blackberries. Bring to a boil, smashing the berries with a wooden spoon. Boil until the syrup thickens slightly, about 3-5 minutes. Strain through a sieve if you don't want blackberry chunks.
- In a pitcher, combine the limeade or lemonade and the blackberry + mint syrup. Start with 1/2 cup of the syrup, and add more to taste. Stir in vodka, if using. Serve over ice with mint and blackberries for garnish.
XO Sara Lynn
*Song of the Day: The Other Woman by Devendra Banhart
A few weeks ago, my mom and grandma came into town, and we spent our days antiquing with my aunts and cousins. Through my years of antiquing, I have become absolutely obsessed with candlewick glass (although I now lovingly referring to it as bubble glass, because it’s much cuter, and I didn’t actually know it was called ‘candlewick’ until my aunt mentioned it a couple days ago). I have now compiled a whole china cabinet full of candlewick glass, because my aesthetic is an 80 year old in a 20-something’s body unless I’m picking out clothing, in which case I normally fit into the 60s or early 90s decades. But I digress. Candlewick is where it’s at, and although I’m probably too old to play tea party, I can almost guarantee that I will find an excuse to have one in the near future if only to utilize the
four eight tea cups and saucers I have accumulated over the years. But for the time being, I’ve been using it in much more practical ways, like for Thai coleslaw for example.
You may have noticed that the theme around SSL as of late has been all-things-spring, especially if you read my post “Little White Blossoms“, which is kind of hilarious considering that today in Reno, all we had was little white snow flakes…But no matter. I have already decided that it’s spring, and spring equals BBQs which equals coleslaw (and grilled corn and potato chips and watermelon and….stop me while you can). I’m not quite sure why Reno is bringing back the snow and cold weather, but I do know that the spring semester is almost over and that I’m completely on board to BBQ all summer long.
To be honest, I’ve never really liked coleslaw although pulled pork is one of my favorite foods, and BBQs are my favorite kind of party. To most, coleslaw goes hand in hand…but for me? No thanks. I’m not necessarily interested in cabbage when it’s swimming in a pool of runny, sweet mayonnaise encased in a disposable plastic container. Sounds appetizing, right? I wouldn’t touch the stuff, but then I tried Thai coleslaw, and I was forever changed.
Thai coleslaw is not soggy or runny at all, but it is simple to throw together and goes perfectly with pork lettuce wraps (or anything else for that matter). This recipe has become kind of a big deal in my house, and although I can’t claim it’s an original, I have adapted the recipe to fit my needs accordingly. All you have to do is chop up the veggies, and you can throw the dressing on a couple hours in advance (which I prefer). Simple, delicious, and does not require turning on the oven in the summer heat. I would even go so far as to throw some grilled chicken or tofu in there and call it a weeknight, summery meal. (Okay, let’s be honest, I have done that before, and I stand by that decision. I have no shame in my game).
*Song of the Day: Pretty Pimpin by Kurt Vile
This title may sound weird but it is definitely true. Tuesday is not my friend.
But not just this Tuesday, every Tuesday. Tuesday to me is the Monday to most people. If that makes sense. Why do I despise Tuesdays so much you ask? Because on Monday, I can accept that I have to get up at an ungodly hour, try to put on my makeup still half asleep, eat a breakfast I’m not hungry for, and then spend 4 hours at school before completing the numerous tasks I have to do at home.
But then I have to do it again on Tuesday?! Ughhhhhhh.
If I could choose the events that occur throughout my Tuesday, it would include these activities (in no particular order):
Eat Chinese food (preferably for breakfast)
Have somebody bake me a cake that is not myself.
Stare at my ceiling.
Eat Chinese food.
Eat ice cream.
Make a craft I’m not obligated to make.
Write a song.
Eat Chinese food.
Sleep all day.
I wish life were like that. However, since it’s not like that I try to make the best out of my Tuesday.
Things I found particularly good that made my Tuesday a little better:
Making these confetti cupcakes. They were so delicious (sorry, no recipe. Then there would be no reason for my cupcake business ;))
My piano. Because I love my piano.
Running shoes. Because even though the thought of working out makes me cringe, I feel so much better afterwards.
And lastly, the summer weather. Only about 14 days of school left and I’m ready!
Clearly, this is my new attempt to make the hard days a little better, so if I post these once in a while, just work with me here. Okay, now what you came here for. How to shrink TOMS!
This year for Prom I decided to wear TOMS with my dress. I bought them but when I tried them on they slipped right off my feet like flip flops 🙁
Sorry about the pictures. They were taken at night time.
I wanted to shrink them in the wash, but I guess that will tear them to pieces. Which I expected. I mean, come on, handmade shoes won’t hold up being thrashed around in a medal cylinder.
Here’s how I shrunk my TOMS the easy way!
Rinse your TOMS with hot water trying to avoid the leather part. This will be really hard to do, and you will probably stop caring and give up. It’s okay, it will dry. They might stink a little though, so use some odor powder to rid of that!
Set them out where it is hot! Since I’m in Vegas, that was not difficult. Next time though, I will dry them outside. I just did it in the garage, and it was not as hot as I expected.
When they’re dry, put them on! They should shrink about 1/2-1 size. If they are any bigger than that, return them.
Here’s a picture of my and my boyfriend on Prom. You can’t see my shoes but this is the dress they went with. I’m so excited to see the pictures taken by our photographer! Really can’t wait.
Also, it’s already 107 degrees in Vegas. IN MAY! This is getting crazy. If you’ve never been in extreme heat like that, then you know why I’m so distraught.
Hope you all have a wonderful Tuesday 😉