Simple & Chic

(Top: Elodie, Shorts: Lilly Pulitzer, Denim Jacket: H&M, Shoes: BCBG)

Spring is one of my favorite seasons, fashion-wise. It's time to bring out the feminine details like lace, scalloped-edge shorts, and espadrilles. I've started to change over my wardrobe from cozy cashmere sweaters to lighter layers for days that start off cold and end up warm and sunny. Also, tassels seem to be having a moment again. From bags, to shoes, jewelry, and decor, it's everywhere...and I love it! This past weekend was filled with activities and meetings, so a chic and simple pairing of classic navy and white, with pretty details, was a great way to transition from errands to weekend entertaining. 


Attitude is Everything

Attitude is everything.
I love this statement for many, many reasons. It was introduced to me at a young age at a leadership training program, and it became a mantra that I have reminded myself of over and over, when good things happen, when challenges happen, attitude is everything...and always a choice. It's easy to allow circumstances, people, or even feelings to influence our attitude toward life, but when we recognize the kind of power that our attitude has, we can change it so it leads us in the direction we want to go.

Attitude determines how much of the future we are allowed to see. It decides the size of our dreams and influences our determination when we're faced with new challenges.

We are the only ones in control of it; no one can control our attitude unless we voluntarily surrender that control. Others may put our attitudes to a test, but we control the result.

Attitude is an incredible asset. We cannot control what other people think, say, or do, and sometimes we cannot control our circumstances as we wish. We can, however, always control our attitude. Choose yours wisely, and make a decision to have an attitude that is independent of circumstances, and resilient to fear, defeat, and negativity. This will make a world of difference in your personal and professional life.
Attitude is always a choice.
Attitude is everything.

Valentine's Day

"If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.

 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love."

Wishing you a very Happy Valentine's Day!
See my Valentine's Day Tea Party 

Valentine Breakfast In Bed

Valentine's Day is around the corner, and regardless of your relationship status, it's a fun reason to celebrate all things beautiful. I don't often have breakfast in bed, but what better way to celebrate the holiday than with a batch of fluffy, heart-shaped, coconut waffles?? I'm a fan of coconut anything, and these waffles are perfectly sweet and simple! To create the heart shape, I use a special waffle iron (find a similar one here and another version on sale here). I think you'll enjoy this fun and delicious way to celebrate whether you're cooking for someone else or treating yourself!
Toasted Coconut Waffles
1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
Dash salt
3 eggs
1 can (13.66 ounces) coconut milk
6 tablespoons butter, melted
1/8 teaspoon coconut extract
3/4 cup flaked coconut

In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. In another bowl, whisk the eggs, coconut milk, butter and extract. Stir into dry ingredients just until moistened. Fold in coconut.
Bake in a preheated waffle iron according to manufacturer’s directions until golden brown. Serve desired amount of waffles with whipped cream and chocolate topping.
To freeze waffles, arrange waffles in a single layer on baking sheets. Freeze overnight or until firm. Transfer to a resealable plastic freezer bag. Waffles may be frozen for up to 2 months.

(Editor's Note: I used a mix from Trader Joe's, but if you want to whip up a fluffy batch from scratch, this is a great recipe!)

Make sure to include your favorite toppings such as maple syrup, fresh fruit, shredded coconut or powdered sugar, etc. Serve on a small tray with a fresh bloom! 


5 Ways to Create A Relaxing Space

When I come home from a busy day, the first thing I want to do is relax and unwind. Your space can be a sanctuary or simply functional. Over the last few years, I've put more thought into creating a space that is beautiful, livable, and allows creativity. Regardless of whether your space is big or small, here's five tips for turning it into a place to allow the cares of the day to slip away.

1. Choose your decor carefully.
One of my favorite pieces in my room is a large aerial photo of a beach with the sunlight sparkling on the turquoise water, brightly colored umbrellas lined up in the sand, and beachgoers tanning or playing along the shoreline. Every time I look at this, I'm instantly transported to vacation mode. After a busy or stressful day, we could all use a little vacation, am I right? Pieces that inspire, relax, or make you smile are a great way to add some personality to a space, or send you on a little mental vacation.
Shop a few of my favorite vacay-inspired pieces, and find a budget-friendly option here.

2. Light a candle.
I love the ambiance that a flickering candle creates. Aside from the fact that they make your home smell fabulous, candles can really help you to unwind and relax. Choose your favorite scent or pick up a few unscented versions for dinner parties and lighting additions. It's fun to rotate out your candles depending on the time of year. I'm often drawn to a clean, fresh, and light floral scent in spring, a tropical-inspired pick through summer, something cinnamon or woodsy in the fall, and peppermint or balsam for the holidays.

3. Pick your playlist.
Music plays a large part in the atmosphere of a place, doesn't it? There's certain songs that are perfect for a morning run, but not so great after a long day. Others are just right for a relaxing evening and too slow for the start of the day. Choose songs or even a style of music that will help recharge, inspire, and help you to decompress. Some of my personal favorites for relaxing are smooth jazz, anything Sinatra, classical guitar, jazz piano, and even a bit of Hawaiian music.

4. Add some fresh flowers.
It's amazing to see the effect that fresh flowers can have in a space. There's something about those blooming beauties that adds just a little extra to a dining area, bedroom, guest room, or kitchen. Pick up a bunch at your local grocery and arrange them in various vases or jars. It is always lovely to walk in to a room and instantly be greeted with a colorful arrangement.

5. Keep things clean.
After a busy day, the last thing I feel like doing is cleaning up a messy desk or room. One great way to ensure that your space is relaxing, breathable, and a happy place to be in is to keep it clean. This may sound obvious, but there's always the temptation to let things slip a little, and sooner or later, you're faced with a mess. Make it a habit to put things away, dust off the counters or dresser, keep things organized, and make the bed as soon as you get up in the morning! You'll find that this little tip makes a world of difference for the atmosphere of your space.
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