Wednesday, August 31, 2011

More Margaritas!

New Tequila.

So you are going to start thinking that I have a problem...which I might...but I've just got to talk about a new tequila on the market, Partida.

The people at Partida realized that I have quite a love of margaritas as evidenced by my endless ramblings of said topic on this blog. So they sent me a sample of their Partida Blanco and a few recipes to try out. No one had to twist my arm on this one.

My new favorite thing with really good tequila is to drink it on the rocks with a little lime and a salted rim. It allows you to really taste the true qualities of the liquor, which in this case is extremely smooth and clean with a light peppery finish. No flashbacks of bad nights in college with the Partida. It's way too good for that.

But I realize that not all can handle tequila on the rocks. So for you guys, Partida has a wonderfully simple Margarita recipe that will still allow their superior product to shine. You are going to LOVE this. And I do believe it would be the perfect cocktail to toast to the end of Summer this Labor Day weekend.

Enjoy...I know I will!

Partida Margarita

1 oz lime juice (about the juice of 1 lime)
3/4 oz pure, organic agave nectar
3/4 oz pure spring water
1.5 oz Partida Tequila (Blanco, Reposado or Anejo will work)

Shake over ice. No garnish or salt necessary (but you can add the salt if you really like)

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Link Love.

Tuesday Inspiration.

Seriously drool-worthy home.

Glamorous Side Project
I am LOVING the color and flow of this gorgeous dress.

The Girl Who Ate Everything
Lasagna cupcakes…omg…I’m in love.

Canelle et Vanille
The chocolate cake looks yummy, but I am dying for those adorable polka dot and gingham spoons. Where do I find them????

Monday, August 29, 2011

Missoni for Target

Design Partnership.

Oh how I love the design partnerships that Target puts together. And the latest line with Missoni is absolutely stunning!! The line includes clothing items for the whole family, accessories galore, housewares, luggage, and more. Everything is absolutely fab...and frugal to top it off. Love love love!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Amazing Recipe Resource


Some days I just don't have the creative energy to come up with a new dinner idea. And some days it's even too much for me to thumb through my recipe books to see if I have what is necessary to make something yummy.

For those days, I'm starting to employ Gojee. It is an amazing website that compiles recipes from some of the most talented food bloggers out there. And there is a search feature where you can put in what you have in the fridge and *Banzinga* a bunch of amazing recipe options appear.

For instance, Skirt Steak yielded...

Blueberries and cake flour...


Dried Ancho Chiles...

You should definitely bookmark this website for those lazy days when you just don't want to think about what to make for dinner. Let Gojee do it for you.

Friday, August 26, 2011

New Trend Alert

So the new trend in town is everything marbleized. I kinda love it! What do you think fellow hip hostess’?

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Sweaty Solution

Household Product.

Even though men may like to think that the fairer sex doesn't sweat, I've got news for you...we do. Or at least I do.

In fact, when I'm prepping for a party or event I most definitely wear something that I don't mind getting grubby. And then at the absolute last moment, I freshen up and change into my party clothes.

But what happens to my grubby clothes? Sweat stains. Erg. I'd practically given up on white blouses because I've grown so annoyed having to buy new ones every season because of those disgusting yellow pit stains. I repeat. Erg.

But now, there is Deo-go.

I've been reading all about this product and thought it was too good to be true. It is the real deal, folks! All you do is spray the product on the unsightly stains, scrub with a small bristle brush, wait 20 minutes, and launder. Bu-bye yellow stains. Bu-bye white stains on colored blouses. Amazing!

Now I will no longer be afraid of white. Yay!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

National Lemonade Day with a Twist


This past Saturday, August 20th, was National Lemonade Day and there really isn't anything better on a hot day than a tall glass of lemonade...except a lemonade cocktail!

We've always fallen back on vodka and lemonade in the past, but we decided to give our spiked citrus drink a twist this year with some new liquor friends - whiskey and rum. What a hit! The sweetness of the rum and the rich oakiness of the whiskey rounded out the lemonade for an amazing cocktail.

Now we used a 10 Year Canadian Club in our recipe and I think it probably makes a nice difference as it's a more complex flavor on it's own and adds so much to the drink. But I'm pretty sure that our usual standard of CC 6 Year would have been delicious as well.

Enjoy everyone!

Raspberry Canadian Lemonade
2 parts Canadian Club Reserve 10 Year
1 part Cruzan Rum
4 parts Raspberry Lemonade (we just used Crystal Light)
1 part Raspberry Puree
Fresh raspberries, mint and a lemon wedge for garnish

Directions: Shake all items in a shaker filled with ice and pour in a tall ice-filled glass. Garnish with fresh raspberries, a sprig of mint and a lemon wedge.

If you are making large quantities, you could also stir these ingredients in a pitcher and pour over ice.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Link Love

Kiss The Groom
Peach cake,sign me up.

Bees Knees Bungalow
Row, Row, Row your bed.

Intimate Weddings
Love the rustic looking belly bands.

Marie Claire
My new favorite night cap...Bailey's Cool Raspberry.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Bottle Cap Tray

Love this idea from Sweet Something Design. Who knew a few bottlecaps, a little spray paint and an inexpensive tray could look so funky and fabulous. Best of all, it is a unique way to incorporate your color scheme into any event or d├ęcor. Funny thing…she said it took her all summer to collect her bottle caps. When I first looked at the photo, I thought, “One night on the roof with the neighbors should be about right for a tray.”

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Painted Berry Baskets

Aren’t these adorable? Check out the Olive Someday Etsy Shop for more details.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Vegan Antlers???

One of my favorite Wicker Park hangouts in Chicago is Bangers and Lace. They have a great beer menu, amazing tastes to nosh, and a very homey urban rustic decor...complete with a few antlers, deer heads, and taxidermy. It just seems to work in this place, especially when I'm on beer number 2 or 3.

But the idea of having my very own set of antlers at home always freaked me out a bit. I was afraid that some bad juju from our dearly departed dear would befall my apartment. And then I saw these Guilt Free Vegan Antlers from The New Woodsman....I kind of love them.

Made of resin instead of the real deal, the Vegan Antlers are available in a large assortment of colors that adds a modern twist to a classically rustic decorative item.

And while you may not find this Vegan item at Whole Foods with your Vegan cookies, these antlers will be just as at home in your pad.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

PB&J Sushi Style

I still can’t believe that it is actually back to school time. Where did the summer go? When I saw these cute little PB&J Sushi rolls at Shine, I knew they would be the perfect lunch treat for the first day of school. The kids will love the cool spin on an old favorite. Plus you get to eat them with chopsticks…double bonus.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011


A new concept in modular furniture FONTABLE is a series of alphanumeric elements reproducing letters A-Z in lower and uppercase and numbers 0-9. This is an event planning fantasy come true. In other words, these tables are freaking fontastic!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Link Love

Tuesday Inspiration.

Desire to Inspire
Hello, dramatic doorway. I love you.

Vintage & Chic
These hat pendant lights are so cheeky and cute.

A Cozy Kitchen
The retro look of these cupcakes is absolutely adorable. I bet they taste pretty darn delish too.

Design Sponge
The modern design on this DIY tray is actually an etched in map. This is tres tray chic.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Giveaway: Preschool Parties Book


Alright, lovely readers. We are back with another fabulous giveaway that is sure to please all of you Hip Hostesses with families.

We were very lucky to get an advance copy of Colleen Mullaney's, "Preschool Parties: Easy Ideas for Princesses, Pirates, and Other Little People." One word. Adorable!

This book is chock-full of great ideas for food, games, decor and more. And I have to tell you that the activity/game ideas are especially exciting for a non-mom like me who doesn't have a clue what kids want to do at a party besides eat cupcakes and run around like crazy.

And with 15 different theme ideas ranging from pirate to princess to outer space to big top, you are sure to find many ideas to please the little people in your family. enter to win your very own copy, leave a comment below telling us about the kiddos in your life and why you'd like to have the book. Make sure to leave us your contact info, so we can tell you if you win. We'll accept entries until August 29th.

Good luck!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Stuck on Staub

Kitchen Gear.

So I absolutely love my Le Creuset pieces for cooking. But when I saw these new colors of Staub from Sur La Table, I was swooning....

Who out there has Staub pieces? I would like to hear about it. Can Staub make friends with my Le Creuset?????

Friday, August 12, 2011

Simple Noodles

Lately, I have become obsessed with noodles. This has mainly happened since my husband stumbled across Corcoran Soba noodles on the Lower East Side. Their soba noodles “dipping style” have changed my life. The problem is that it is a tiny restaurant and you have to get there early to line up or your wait could be extensive. My life unfortunately doesn’t always allow for me to be lined up for noodles at exactly 11:30am.

This got me thinking…maybe I could try my hand at a few noodle recipes at home. Then I ran across Zen Family Habits recipe titled “5 ingredients, 5 minutes, 5 meals” I was immediately smitten. Some of the ingredients I may need to mail order. But the truth is the promise of a tasty dinner in 5 minutes is worth a little forethought and online shopping.

If this works out the way I am hoping, then Corcoran Soba will be seeing a little less of their most frequent client.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Brilliant Bubbly


As much as I love a well-crafted cocktail, there is just something extra special about a glass of good champagne. I've tried they pink, white, sweet, or dry, but my newest obsession is Launois Pere & Fils.

Photo courtesy of Yoshio Taka on Flickr.

We first stumbled upon this gem at our trusted Lush Wine & Spirits on Chicago Ave in Chicago. They consider it their "house champagne" and I can certainly see why. It is perfectly balanced for most every individual's taste. And it takes only one sip to realize that this is truly a special champers indeed.

For your next special occasion, grab one of these gorgeous bottles and enjoy. Or you can do like me and order a 1/2 a case and keep it in the fridge at all times...because you just never know when you're going to need it ;)