Save These Dresses!

There are two reason I feel like I shouldn’t start buying Spring clothes yet. The first and most important is that I just made the biggest purchase of my life. I bought a brand spanking new car! A black 2011 KIA Optima with a beige interior and navigation. I’m in love. Isn’t she pretty!?

So until I get used to what kind of flexibility I have in my budget after my new car payment, I should really hold off.

The other reason is because every year I start to buy warm weather clothes before it is actually warm out and then the excitement of wearing them when it actually is warm has worn off. This post is simply a reminder to myself of what to buy when it’s time! Save these dresses!

1. Polka Dot Dress $ Gold Cup Horse Race in May with a big hat!
2. Mesh Beaded Dress $360Top Shop Extravagant Easter dress
3. Circle Plaid Dress $128Jessica Simpson Collection Work wear
4. 2in1 by Wal G $70Top Shop Work wear
5. Bella Dress by Motel $96Top Shop Sunday Funday at a Vineyard
6. Color Block Dress by Love $68Top Shop Work wear
7. Knitted Cream Pointelle Dress $90Top Shop Anniversary Dinner
8. Tie Dyed Maxi $ First night at the Georgetown Water Front

Low Calorie, Low Carb Strawberry “Cheesecake”

Okay so it’s not really cheesecake, but if you are a cheesecake fanatic (like my boyfriend) this is an amazing low calorie, low carbohydrate option that invokes all the same flavor profiles as a decadent New York cheesecake topped with strawberries. 

*12 strawberries *1 packet splenda (or half a teaspoon) *2 tablespoons marscapone
— Just 200 Calories —

1. Slice strawberries in halves or quarters.
2. In a separate bowl add 1 packet splenda to 2 tables spoons of marscapone and mix.
3. Add strawberries and enjoy!

I think next time I may sweeten the marscapone and then just place the strawberries on top and not mix them together. This way I can choose how much cheese goes with each bite.

Nick and I got a new patio set from his grandparents last week and we love it! (I took my strawberries and marscapone out there this morning for these photos)  When I park my car and look up at our apartment and see the lovely wooden navy blue table and chairs I’m impressed with how “adult” we have become. I can’t wait for it to warm up so I can enjoy my coffee outside in the morning or eat dinner alfresco with my love.

Honey & Goat Cheese Salad Dressing (and 7 things about me)

Did you know that goat cheese has 30% less fat than sour cream? While most cows milk cheeses have about  100 calories and 10 grams of fat per ounce, goat cheese only has 80 calories and 6 grams of fat.

I love crumbled goat cheese on salads so when I saw this recipe (check out Gina’s Skinny Recipes) I knew it would be a keeper.

*4 oz fresh goat cheese (any flavor you like, mine had herbs)at room temperature *1 1/2 tbsp honey *2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil *2 tsp apple cider vinegar *1/2 lemon, juiced *1 tbsp water *salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Blend ingredients and serve over a salad (or even as a veggie or fruit dip!).

I had this salad for dinner last night and have it packed again for lunch today. The sweetness of fruit with the tang of the dressing compliment each other well. Try apples, strawberries, grapes, or craisin/raisins as your fruit with a spring mix lettuce blend. The crunch of an almond or pecan would add more texture as well. Another option is to add beets, they are heavenly with goat cheese.

Liz over at Reston Style included me in her “7 things” post, so now it is my turn. Thank you Liz for helping me get out of my blogging block (Ashley you too, love you). So other than my love of cheese which is evident through this recipe, here are a couple other things:

* I’m orginally from Fairfield, Connecticut
* I’ve been on Fox News several times to talk politics etc. (mainly through the 2008 election) and ultimately decided that was not the direction I wanted to take my career in. Television (and politics) is a tough business, emotionally and physically, little pay, long hours, and high stress. 
* I listen to all kinds of music but tend to lean towards hard rock, emo, and punk. (Hard to imagine when you see me, I don’t really fit that stereo type)
*I cry at the drop of a hat. I cried last night during “Chopped” on the food network. I cry during HGTV’s House Hunters. I’m ridiculous.
*I love Jameson Irish Whiskey on the rocks (but can’t hold my alcohol like I used too).
*I have a problem with eating too much candy, mainly  gummy candy (Haribo gummy bears and Swedish Fish). 

Your turn (No pressure): Echo Bella, At First Blush, …This Girl, My Nesting Life, Puppies and Pumps, Mix Tape, and Maggie Mayd

Valentines Day Post

I made these cheesecake brownie pops for Nick to take to work for Valentines Day (tags courtesy of Bakerella). First I tried to make them covered in pink candy melts with crushed conversation hearts. Unfortunately it was a miss. The pink color made them look inappropriate instead of holiday themed. I don’t know how else to explain it without being too graphic… I went back to classic fail proof chocolate.

I’ve been insanely busy with work and I am going to be extra lame and not include a recipe here. While these brownie pops were REALLY good I will be stepping away from desserts for awhile. I just got my Victoria’s Secret swimsuit issue and I’d like to look good in the new purple bikini I have my eye on. (If you really want it leave me a comment and I will tell you but I bet you are almost happy that I won’t be tempting you anymore!)

Take a last look at these sweet treats because it’s healthy meals and snacks from now on… Bring it on Spring!

Martha Stewart and Oreo Cheesecake Cupcakes

I picked up Martha Stewart’s cupcake book about a month ago and haven’t gotten around to try anything until now. All of her cupcakes are gorgeous but I decided to start off easy (these took maybe 30 minutes). I also cut the recipe in half and added a little extra sugar.

*1 package Oreo cookies *2 packages Philadelphia cream cheese (room temperature) *slightly under 1 cup sugar *1 tsp vanilla extract *2 eggs lightly beaten *½  cup sour cream *Pinch of salt
Makes about 15-18 cupcakes
FYI “easy” didn’t make them any less delicious! I had three yesterday and that’s when I had to get them out of the house. I brought them into work today and gave Nick the rest to bring to his office as well.

1. Preheat oven to 275 degrees. Line standard muffin tins with paper liners. Place 1 whole cookie in the bottom of each lined cup.

2. With an electric mixer on medium high speed, beat cream cheese until smooth, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Gradually add sugar, and beat until combined. Beat in vanilla.

3. Drizzle in eggs, a bit at a time, beating to combine and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Beat in sour cream and salt. Stir in chopped cookies by hand.

4. Divide batter evenly among cookie-lined cups, filling each almost to the top. Bake, rotating pan halfway through, until filling is set, about 22 minutes. Transfer to wire racks to cool completely. Refrigerate at least 4 hours (or up to overnight). Remove from tins just before serving.

I got to thinking and Martha Stewart is basically the original womens lifestyle blogger. In the 60’s she was a model for Chanel. She could probably coordinate and photograph a 30 for 30 remix like no other! Isn’t she beautiful?

She picked up her knack for business (after her modeling stint) as a stock broker in the 70’s but didn’t stay in the business long. Her panache for home decorating became apparent after her and her husband bought and  remodeled their home in Westport, Connecticut (right next to where I grew up). She started a successful catering business next and it all spiraled upward from there.
Martha built an empire out of all the things I love. Her website and books are an endless source of material for bloggers like me and the network I follow. She is the original “Cupcakes and Cashmere,” with an array of content from baking and decorating, to gardening, fitness, sewing, weddings, entertaining and more.