Monday, August 31, 2015

Homemade Granola Bars (Bloggers Go Back to School)

I cannot believe that today is the last day of August, it's insane. For the entire month of August, Cathleen of Classy Cathleen and Nicole of Empire Styles have hosted an back to school theme linkup with each week having a different theme (read my posts for the previous themes of fashion, organization, desks, and diys). The them of this week, the very last week, is recipes, which I love!

I decided that I would share my recipe with homemade granola bars with y'all! I love granola bars (like I eat at least 1 Luna bar a day) and I was obsessed with these granola bars freshmen year. One of my best friends loves these and when I texted her a picture while I was making them for this post, she said that everyone needs to know that they are her favorite food (your welcome S!). They are pretty simple to make and so yummy! I also love how you can control the ingredients versus store bought granola bars you usually have no clue what is in them!

Ingredients:
Butter, Brown Sugar, Honey, Vanilla Extract, Quick-Cooking/Instant Oats, Rice Cereal, Sliced Almonds, Flaxseed Meal or Wheat Germ, Dark Chocolate Chips, Chocolate Chips, or Butterscotch Chips (or a combination of all)

1. Line a 9 by 13 pan with aluminum foil and spray the foil lightly with cooking spray

2. In a large pot, add the butter, brown sugar, and honey


3. Place the pot on the stove and boil on medium-high heat, stirring constantly


4. Once it is all combined, remove from heat and add vanilla


5. In the pot, add the oats, rice cereal, almonds, and flaxseed meal and mix



6. Transfer the mixture to the pan and pat lightly with a spatula to even out


7. Sprinkle the chocolate/dark chocolate/butterscotch chips on top and press down with the spatula


8. Cover the pan with plastic wrap


9. Place the pan in the fridge for 1.5 to 2 hours


10. Once cool, cut out the granola bars and wrap the granola bars in plastic wrap individually

11. Store in the fridge until ready to eat!

Ingredients
- 6 tablespoons butter
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons honey
- 1.5 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 cups quick-cooking/instant oats (such as Quaker Quick 1-Minute Oats- don't use regular old-fashion oats)
- 1 3/4 cups crispy rice cereal
- 1/2 cup sliced almonds
- 1/4 cup flaxseed meal or wheat germ
- 1/3 cup dark chocolate chips, chocolate chips, or butterscotch chips (or a combination of all)

Instructions
1. Line a 9 by 13 pan with aluminum foil and spray the foil lightly with cooking spray
2. In a large pot, add the butter, brown sugar, and honey
3. Place the pot on the stove and boil on medium-high heat, stirring constantly
4. Once it is all combined, remove from heat and add vanilla
5. In the pot, add the oats, rice cereal, almonds, and flaxseed meal and mix
6. Transfer the mixture to the pan and pat lightly with a spatula to even out
7. Sprinkle the chocolate/dark chocolate/butterscotch chips on top and press down with the spatula
8. Cover the pan with plastic wrap
9. Place the pan in the fridge for 1.5 to 2 hours
10. Once cool, cut out the granola bars and wrap the granola bars in plastic wrap individually
11. Store in the fridge until ready to eat!

Note- The great thing about these granola bars is that you can easily not include any of the dry ingredients (oats, rice cereal, sliced almonds, or flaxseed meal). I made these without almonds in the pictures since I didn't have any and they still turned out perfectly! I have also not included the rice cereal and I know my friend has made them without the flaxseed meal! I would probably use the oats though! 

Have you ever made homemade granola bars before? Let me know in the comments!

Friday, August 28, 2015

My Chic Week August 21-27

Hey y'all and Happy Happy Friday! I am so excited for the weekend but today, I will be sharing with y'all what I have been up to this week and then what's on my radar!


Last Friday was my first Friday in school and so when I got home, I worked on a bunch of homework (super fun Friday night over here y'all!). I basically just caught up on a few things and then relaxed from a busy week!

A pic from my Instagram, sadly all of these Lilly dresses are no longer available but here are some similar!

Saturday morning, my family and I headed out to the nearby Ikea (it's like 20 minutes away) to look for some furniture for my brother's room. Even though, I wasn't looking to buy anything for myself I always have such a fun time looking at all the rooms they have set up and picking out what will be in my future house. We headed back home for lunch and I spent the afternoon working on homework (super fun, I know!). I had a late-night babysitting job on Saturday so I spent a lot of time on Pinterest (follow me here!) and watching Friends after the kids went to bed!


Sunday morning, I slept in since I babysit and didn't get to bed until close to 2 in the morning. I got some homework done in the morning. In the afternoon, I baked some yummy (and somewhat healthy) cookies (that will be on the blog soon!) and then hung out by the pool in my new Lilly bikini that I bought in the sale!


This week has been my first full week of school (seems like it has been a lot longer than that!). My week has been full of essay deadlines, test preparation, all sorts of assignments, starting my after school babysitting job, and my first Service Committee meeting of the year! It's safe to say I'm ready for the weekend (especially so I can catch up on some sleep!).

On my radar:

1. This article with imagined conversations with William and Kate is too funny!

2. I love love love Inslee's work!. After seeing her post on her work for Jack Rogers, I discovered her blog and it's perfect! Definitely worth a read!

3. Love this post about junior year from Carrie!

4. My second post for Our Campus Media is up! Check it out here!

5. I've been loving J. Crew Factory's new fall arrivals! My favorites are this striped sweater, this sweater with pockets, and this skirt!

Also, check out my posts from this week!

Monogram Binder DIY, Booze Cruise, How To: Keep Blogging in Busy Times, Cut Out Top + First Impressions

What have you been up to this week? What has been on your radar? Let me know in the comments!

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Cut Out Top + First Impressions

Today, I'm sharing with y'all the last of the outfit pictures from my trip to Upstate New York. Today's outfit, I wore several times during my trip but I wore it for Lobster Fest. One of my friends got this top for me as a birthday gift while she was in Europe over Spring break and I love it. I paired it with my First Impressions Callahan Shorts (which are sadly not available anymore). Callahan shorts are always a staple in my summer wardrobe and I own them in several prints. The print placement of these shorts look amazing in person (I was a bit skeptical before I saw them in store) and I have been wearing these shorts all summer long.

This was the perfect outfit for Lobster Fest and the thing I love about this top is that it looks cute with shorts but I can also pair it with jeans and a cardigan once it gets a little bit cooler outside!








Top- Zara (similarShorts- Lilly Pulitzer (similarSandals- Jack Rogers Watch- Kate Spade Bracelets- David Yurman (similar)

Do you love the First Impressions print? Let me know in the comments!

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

How To: Keep Blogging in Busy Times

One of the biggest things I didn't realize when I started blogging was the time commitment. I thought oh you just throw a post together and then bam, you publish it! Well a few months later, I certainly know that isn't the case! You have to write the post, take pictures, edit the pictures, schedule the post, Instagram, tweet a link, and then pin the pictures onto Pinterest (follow me here!). Don't take this as I don't love blogging (I do! A lot!) but I just didn't realize this going into it!

A few weeks ago, I was with one of my friends and she asked how I got all of my posts up every weekday. Because not only do I blog, I have homework to do, I hang out with my friends, I sleep, and I manage to get everything done most of the time. What's my secret? Well that's what I am about to tell y'all!

Plan Ahead
I always make sure to have one to two weeks of posts planned. That way if I'm having a super crazy week, I don't have to stress over writing a post. I use Google Calendar and color code it (blue- published, green- draft, pink- idea) to determine what I need to work on! I also just started planning my blog posts in my new Day Designer planner that I got at Target!

Make Lists of Post Ideas
I keep an Google Doc full of post ideas that I add to whenever I come up with new ideas! When I start to write posts as I'm pre-planning, I look through my post ideas list! Perfect for when you have a bit of a writer's block but want to get new content onto the blog!

Schedule Time Each Week to Blog
After working every weekday in my last few weeks of summer break, I learned the importance of this one! I would write my posts for the week during the weekend and when I got home each night, I would look and comment on some of my favorite blogs! This worked out great because it helped me to focus on blogging!


How do you keep blogging in busy times? Let me know in the comments!

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Booze Cruise

One of the most versatile styles in my closet has to be the Lilly Pulitzer Elsa top. It can be dressed up or dressed down. Worn in the winter or the summer. Worn with jeans or with shorts or with a skirt. I love the top but I don't really love the price. It is silk so it is typically 158 dollars for a printed Elsa. But I have never paid that much for either of my two Elsa tops. The first one I scored in the Lilly Pulitzer After Party Sale last summer. A few months later, I was shopping at Southpark when I found this top on the sale rack. It was the last one and it was luckily in my size! Sadly, the After Party Sale is already over but I would highly suggest checking out your local Lilly store to see if they have any Elsas on sale!

Anyways, I wore this top on my trip to Upstate New York when we went out to dinner. I was so excited to wear this top because sadly it is way too warm to wear it back home in North Carolina. I love the nautical look of the top so I paired it with plain white chinos, sand colored Tory Burch Millers, and my usual jewelry (featured in this post).








Top- Lilly Pulitzer (similarShorts- J. Crew Sandals- Tory Burch Watch- Kate Spade Bracelets- David Yurman (similar)

Do you have any Elsa tops? Let me know in the comments!

Monday, August 24, 2015

Monogram Binder DIY {Bloggers Go Back to School Linkup}

It's Monday, which means I have another post as part of the Bloggers Go Back to School Linkup (hosted by Cathleen of Classy Cathleen and Nicole of Empire Styles). If you are new to the linkup, each week has a different theme relating to back to school (check out my posts on back to school fashion, organization, and my desk!). Week 4's theme is DIY and honestly I was kind of stumped! I'm not the biggest DIY girl and I don't spend any time crafting so I had no idea what to do for this week! But then I remembered last year I made Monogram Binder Covers and thought that would be perfect!

This time two years ago (before my freshmen year of high school), I wanted to make monogram binder covers like I saw on Pinterest (follow me here!). So I went online and searched for monogram binder covers. Unfortunately all that came up was templates (that I had no idea how to add my own monogram to) or Etsy shops that you have to pay for! Somehow, I managed to make them but last year, I was super determined to make my own and have it look good. Here is a tutorial of exactly what I did (that is similar to my Monogram Computer Background DIY post!)!

Step 1: Download a monogram font online (I used this one!)

Step 2: Open up PowerPoint

Step 3: Switch the slide from a horizontal angle to a vertical angle


Step 4: Get rid of all the text boxes on the slide


Step 5: Go online and find a background image (I used the Lilly Pulitzer print, Red Right Return) and save it to your downloads

Step 6: Drag the image from your downloads to your PowerPoint slide


Step 7: Adjust the image so it fits the entire slide


Step 8: Add a circle on top of your image


Step 9: In three separate text boxes add your first initial (uncapitalized), last initial (capitalized), and middle initial (uncapitalized)


Step 10: Change the font of your text to your monogram font


Step 11: Move your text to the circle

Step 12: Adjust the size and placement of your text


Step 13: Change the color of your text


Step 14: Change the color of your circle to white


Step 15: Add a rectangle to your image in the bottom corner


Step 16: Change the color of your rectangle to white


Step 17: Add a textbook for the description of what is in your binder


Step 18: Print your binder cover out and place in your binder!


Have you made a monogram binder cover before? Let me know in the comments!

Friday, August 21, 2015

My Chic Week August 14-20

It's Friday and I cannot be happier since it marks the end of my first week of junior year!


Last Friday, I nannyed but before I started, I went and grabbed some Starbucks to celebrate Friday a bit. After work, I just hung out at home since I didn't really have any time to relax and blog for an extended period of time all week!

Saturday morning, I slept in and worked on some blog stuff. Saturday night, two of my best friends had their Sweet Sixteen birthday party, which was a ton of fun (sadly, I didn't get any pictures!).

Sunday morning, my family and I went to Church and then out to lunch. In the afternoon, I blogged and laid out by the pool.

Monday, I got up bright and early to nanny and of course, to shop the Lilly sale. I was pleasantly surprised how the sale went this year since it was pretty easy for me. I spent the afternoon at a pottery studio and the pool with the kids I nanny!



Tuesday was my last day of nannying and the last day of summer! The kids I nanny and I spent the morning at the pool followed by lunch and then some ice cream. I headed to bed pretty early so I could get up early for school the next day!


A little ice cream to end the summer on a sweet note!

W
ednesday was my first day of my junior year and it was interesting to say the least. I got a peek of all of my new classes and I will definitely be busy this year! Thursday was my first full day of classes (Wednesday was shorter classes) and I was crazy busy to say the least!


Now it is time for what is on my radar!

1. Now that school is back in session, I'm kind of ready for fall! I have already gotten a few new things for fall and winter (so excited for my Bean Boots and blanket scarf!) and can't wait to wear some old favorites! I know it will be a while until North Carolina cools down but until then I will be pinning away on my Fall and Winter Clothing board on Pinterest!

2. I've already had a few assignments that require work cited pages and I totally forgot how much I love EasyBib. So easy to use and super helpful!

3. Tory Burch's customer service. A pair of my TB flip-flops recently broke so after sending an email to customer service, they will be sending me an e-gift card for the amount of the shoes! I am so excited and love how amazing their customer service is!

4. I've mentioned this on here before but I recently started guest posting over at Our Campus Media! My posts will go up every other Thursday (there's one next week) and I'm super excited! Check out my first guest post here!

5. As y'all know the Lilly sale was this week and I am more than thrilled with my purchases! My order actually came in already which I'm super excited about!

My Lilly APS Haul!

Check out my blog posts from this week!

Peek into My Desk A High School Junior's Advice for Incoming Freshmen Samba + White Pants Key Lime Cookies

What have y'all been up to lately? What is on your radar? Let me know in the comments!