Friday, March 30, 2012

it's friday. and i'm fancy.

april showers

april showers by ecoletta 



happy friday!

i enjoyed putting together this week's friday's fancies post because i knew right away the raincoat i would choose in an april downpour. a burberry trench. i've been dreaming of this coat for the last 8 years. i want it. i need it. i have a slight obsession with jackets/coats - i own almost 20 - and if i had around $2,000 to spend on one, this trench would be it.

ugh, i die.

maybe if i get a really sweet bonus or raise at work this year i'll put it towards this jacket. that seems right, doesn't it? 

......

this was like the longest week ever, don't you agree? i'm counting down the hours until work is over so i can join my bestie for a fun night. we're volunteering with the wounded warrior project at walter reed hospital. my friend has been a part of the organization for a few years now, and i was trained at work to become a mentor, so tonight she's introducing me to the people and i don't really know what to expect. i'm excited and nervous. what if i don't know what to say to the wounded? what if i say the wrong thing? those men and women have been through so much and all i want to do is try to put a smile on their face, maybe even laugh a bit. i know my friend will be by my side and guide me through the night, but i'm still a little nervous. 

afterwards we're going to david's bridal so she can help me pick out two of my bridesmaid dresses. then we'll probably nosh on some food. naturally.

saturday we're doing family things and on sunday boyfriend and i are hanging out in dc all day. it's supposed to be almost 70 degrees so we'll start at eastern market in capitol hill, where we'll do a bit of shopping and have a bottomless mimosa and bloody mary brunch, and then we'll make our way to a few museums. i can't wait!


what's on your weekend agenda?
xoxo

Thursday, March 29, 2012

i'm a poser.



boyfriend and i have been trying to watch what we eat during the work week and upping our exercise routine to about 4-5 times a week. our diet during the week is pretty simple - grilled chicken, veggies and fish - trying to stay clear of starches as much as we can (bathing

come friday night we get a bit more laxed. if we feel like having pizza, we have pizza. if we feel like having pasta, we have pasta. and the other friday night, we were craving some pasta.

when i saw marissa's lemon pepper pappardelle recipe, i instantly knew i had to copy it. 
what can i say, i'm a food poser

my mom gave us the same trader joe's pappardelle a while ago and it was just sitting in our cabinet because we didn't know what to pair it with. so when i saw that marissa used the same brand of pasta to make this dish back in her home state, i squealed with joy.

finally! a great and simple recipe to use with the pasta!

if you haven't seen her recipe yet, head on over to marissa's blog and check it out. like i said earlier, this dish is sooo simple and the pappardelle is oh-so-yummy. also, boyfriend and i didn't feel all lethargic afterwards from eating it! the lemon and olive oil flavor make it light and refreshing. 

marissa knows her stuff...you will not be disappointed.


Monday, March 26, 2012

monday dreaming.





the weather around these parts has been awfully mild for March. i feel like we’re getting a jump start on summer and i’m not prepared. i still have my sweaters and scarves hanging in my closet, and my spring and summer clothes are still neatly packed away in storage.

it was 80 degrees here on friday and i was scrounging at the last minute to find a dress to wear out with friends. while i was digging through my bins of clothes trying to find something to wear and having zero success, i realized how i would love to spruce up my wardrobe to reflect these warmer days. i dream of packing it with some bold colors and fresh new accessories.

while trying on bridesmaids dresses at j.crew this weekend, i couldn’t stop staring at everything in the store. i.wanted.it.all! i couldn't stop dreaming about their clothes! 
these are my top picks:

j.crew spring/summer
j.crew spring/summer by ecoletta



my must-have’s: scalloped shorts, chambray blazer, coral chinos, bright skinnies, polka dot blouse, striped dress, nude suede heels, leather sandals, lobster necklace, mini-hobo, anchor themed bathing suit.

 YES, PLEASE!


What items would you like to add to your closet for this spring and summer?



Friday, March 23, 2012

it's friday. and i'm fancy.

march madness

march madness by ecoletta



my friday’s fancies post is dedicated to my beloved mountaineers – blue and gold! yes, i know, they didn’t make it past the first round in march madness, but i still love them. in recent years we’ve made it to the final four (2010), the elite eight (2005), and the sweet sixteen (2006 and 2008), so i’ve been able to celebrate our team on the march madness train.

three of my closest high school girlfriends and their significant others are coming into town this afternoon. i can’t wait! we’re going to be packed like sardines in our teeny-tiny apartment, but we’ll make it work (did I mention we only have one bathroom…this should be interesting). tonight we’ll probably go for pizza to either here or here, and catch up. 

tomorrow we’ll be spending five hours on a private wine tour – we rented a bus that will take us to two different wineries - oye. the weather calls for rain so I will definitely be packing my rain boots. we’re packing a picnic of cheeses, crackers, fruit, and a variety of meats, so this wvu tote would be great to hold all of our goodies (and the many bottles of wine we’ll want to purchase for our bus ride back – naturally). i’m sure in between the wine tour and dinner at jaleo and drinks at the biergartenhaus on saturday night, there will be many naps taking place. which i’m totally looking forward to.

One of my girlfriends is getting married in november so on sunday morning we are heading over to j.crew in georgetown to try on bridesmaid dresses!  It’s going to be such a girly afternoon, I’m sure the boys can’t wait!

Do you have any fun plans this weekend? 

p.s. did any of you see the hunger games at midnight? how was it?! i'm going on tuesday and i can't really think about anything else but that
:)


Wednesday, March 21, 2012

what i wore.

dress {the limited}

so the other day i had to go to the mall and get my brother a belated birthday gift. my plan was to be in and out. isn't that always the plan?

so i go to banana republic, pick up his gift, and as i'm heading out i see this lovely little dress in the window next door. my head tells me to keep moving, my heart tells me to take just one peek. 

one peek led to me picking up this dress, a shirt, and these pink skinny jeans
how does this even happen?
(i won't even tell you about my third stop to forever 21 where i also picked up a necklace, bracelets, and a shirt)

hold on. my purchases at the limited were justified (forever 21, not so much. but really, are they ever at that store?). like i've said many times on this blog, i have a lot of weddings to attend this year. which means i'll have many bridal showers, rehearsal dinners, and ceremonies where i NEED to look fabulous at. this dress will be perfect for one of those occasions. i'm sure of it. the color is more luxurious in person and it is so comfortable. 
purchase, justified.

the shirt (the mustard colored one that's hanging up to the right of me), was on clearance, for $9.  that in and of itself makes it worthwhile.

and finally, the jeans. i've been looking for a flashy pair for a while now. i've been to target and tried on their colored skinnies, but they did not fit right. they were extremely small and bunched up at the knees which made me look awkward. these, however, fit perfectly and i'm a huge fan of the color. so having perfectly fit jeans, in a cute color, always warrants a purchase.

so even though i walked out of the mall two hours later, with six more purchases than i had planned, they were all pretty much justified...

at least that's what i'm going to keep telling myself.

Monday, March 19, 2012

monday dreaming.

happy monday!

how was your st. patrick's day weekend? sometimes i like to think that i'm still in college, hanging with all the cool kids, drinking all day. and saturday, i thought just that.

we met up with whitney and mo at a neighborhood bar and enjoyed the rooftop. the weather was perfect - i even got a slight tan line (!) - and the beers were flowing.

this guy even showed up...


we left early and met some friends for lunch, where we took too many bailey shots. about 2 hours later we made our way to a house party, played a little beer pong, watched some basketball, and stumbled to another bar where we ate dinner and decided to order buckets. i'll just say that was a mistake.


we made it home by 10 pm. passed out at 11 pm. woke up at 7 am. annnnnd i've been in my pj's ever since. i'm too old for this.
*i'm writing this on sunday night, if you haven't already guessed.

......

a few weeks ago i told you all that boyfriend and i made an "adult" decision, and although things are still in progress, i'm happy to announce that we are moving! we love living where we do now and being in such close proximity to the city. and we grew to really love our teeny-tiny apartment. but the reality is the rent is just too much, especially if we want to start buying in the next year or two. we've been looking at places about 20 minutes west of the city (still to rent), in a town that we both adore. we found a condo two weeks ago - bigger AND cheaper! -, submitted all the paperwork, and hope to find out this week if we can move in. 
*fingers crossed*

with all these plans to move, i've been dreaming of all things interior design. 

here are a few ideas that have sparked my interest.

diy gold chevron paintings

diy coffee filters as wall art!


a simple nook

bar cart!

crisp and cozy bedroom - love the headboard and mantle display

simple entryway
(all images via my pinterest)


oh, AND this place allows dogs...
so, maybe this means we're one day closer to getting that dream puppy of ours?!?!
;)

what are some of your favorite interior design looks?
p.s. want to learn a little bit more about me? head on over to here and read up!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

seafood feast.

boyfriend came up with an awesome dish last weekend. 

citrus glazed snapper, pan seared scallops, homemade mango salsa, with rice and steamed broccoli.


that man can cook.

my favorite part of the dish? the mango salsa. 
he even put it in a grilled onion.
presentation is everything.

because this mango salsa is delish and super easy to make, i thought i'd share the recipe with you all.

you're welcome.

mango salsa

2 mangos, diced
1 tomato, diced
1/2 red onion, diced
1 jalepeno
1/4 cup cilantro
splash of orange juice and lime juice

Mix it all together and leave it in the fridge for an hour before you serve it to let the flavors mingle. 





happy salsa'ing!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

all you need is love.

i think there comes a point in a long term relationship when people around you get a bit more curious, a bit more nosey, and a bit more judgmental. they start asking questions like:

“when are you guys moving in together?”
“have you talked about the future – kids, marriage, puppies?”
“…but you’ve been together how long now?”

and my favorite…

“when are you guys getting engaged!?”

i’m asked the last question pretty much on a monthly basis – whether it’s from a family member, a close friend, or even a colleague – and my answer is always the same. 

"...no idea."

i think a lot of the question-asking has to do with the timing. in a few months he’ll be 29 (july) and i’ll be 27 (september). we’ve been together for almost 3 years – living together for 1.5. so far we’ve been to three weddings and have five more coming up in just this year alone! it seems like all of our closest friends are taking the next step in THEIR relationships, so it seems only fitting that we do the same, right?

riiiiiiiiiight.
 now, i’d be straight up lying if i said i didn’t think about getting engaged and marrying my best friend. i think about it a lot – what girl doesn’t, especially when they’re in love. but there was a time, more recently, when i was maybe thinking about it all too much. i started letting those outside forces get inside my head. it was as if i let them plant a “planning” seed in my brain and all of a sudden my life was on a deadline. i felt like in order for my life to turn out the way I had always hoped and dreamed, an engagement would need to happen by the end of this year.

engaged by 27. married by 28. house by 29. child by 31. life complete.
who am I, even?

{via}

boyfriend and I talk a lot about our future. he reassures me all the time that he’s not going anywhere, that I’m “the one”, yada yada yada. and vice versa. we have dreams of moving away together, starting a family, and growing old together. but i think all of these dreams are kind of the beauty in it all. we get excited when we talk about these dreams of ours. we are content in this little life that we are building together. to us, we have so much to look forward to - engagement, or no engagement.

i think it’s important to remind ourselves once in a while to not get caught up on the if’s and the when’s, and that it’s okay to take your time, to learn about your relationship, and that maybe you both aren't quite there yet. if boyfriend were to propose tomorrow, i would be ecstatic. but if it doesn't happen for another year or two, i would be just as equally ecstatic. when i felt like i had to put a timeline on these life events, our dreams felt spoiled. our wide open future felt spoiled. i was so fixed on when, and how, and if, and where, that I was forgetting the most important thing of all. to just live in the moment. enjoy each day as it comes. savor the little things. and if something wonderful happens along the way...

embrace it. 
wholeheartedly.

{via}

{via}


hope your day is full of love.
xoxo

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

a smorgasbord of life happenings.

happenings as of late.


new jewels from my dear friend, jenna at dream weaver.
check out her shop on etsy! 

delicate lace on my new sweater from free people!

delicious lunch at le pain quotidien

we like to match our shoes when out on a costco run.

hello, childhood.

my new niece's birthing announcement!
we.are.so.jersey.

heading out for a bike ride around dc.
don't let the pink fool you. i'm dangerous on the streets.

hello, abe.

taking a break from our bike ride
at one of our favorite spots - on the steps next to arlington memorial bridge
 

happy tuesday!

Monday, March 12, 2012

monday dreaming.





in keeping up with my new weekly series, monday dreaming, i wanted to share the one thing that i've been dreaming about ever since i was a little girl.


{via}

puppies.

i've always had a obsession soft spot in my heart for man's best friend. growing up i had the desire to be a veterinarian, but the thought of being the one responsible for putting some of them down was too heartbreaking, i knew i wouldn't be the right person for the job. 

my first job was working in a dog kennel. it was the best job i've ever had! i got to interact with dogs all day long - caring for them, playing with them and taking them for walks. i was in heaven.

boyfriend and i talk all the time about adopting a furry friend. thank goodness he loves dogs too because otherwise this relationship wouldn't work - (just kidding, babe!...kinda, sorta, not really...)

 i just don't trust people who don't like dogs.

anyways. 

 we bicker about what kind we would get (him a lab; me a golden-doodle).  we both understand the time commitment (and costs!) that come with owning one. it is a huge responsibility. if we were home more than we would definitely have one right now! probably a golden-doodle because i would win. her name would be gelato or something ridiculous. she would be sitting next to me as i type this post. licking my hand and begging me to rub her belly. and my life would be complete.

snap out of it, erica.

so until then i'll just keep browsing the internet, pinning puppy faces, and mention "i want a puppy" to boyfriend about three times a day.


{via}

{via}

{via}

{via}


i mean, come on.

Friday, March 9, 2012

it's friday. and i'm fancy.


this week's friday's fancies theme, "spring break", comes at the perfect time. if you missed my guest post on cheerios and beer then head on over to check it out. i talked about my spring break trip to cancun - circa 2004 - annnnd it was pretty ridiculous. i still can't believe i posted those pictures.

anyways.

if i were to do spring break all over again, i wouldn't really change much. the location was perfect. the drinks were delicious (minus the tequila). the company was fun. the memories were unforgettable. 

however, there is one thing i would DEFINITELY change. and that would be my wardrobe

no more puka shell necklaces and no more hollister skirts. 



spring break



































i would rock a black bandeau bikini because let's face it, tan lines are the worst. and black makes me look skinnier.
*p.s. any bigger busted girls out there that wear this type of bathing suit? if so, where do you get yours from? i have a few from victoria's secret and mine always, and i mean always, fall down. i don't want my boobs to sag like i'm 80 years old anymore.

i would have a romper with me because it's cuter than a typical terry cloth cover-up and it's still short enough to be scandalous for spring break. just like my old hollister skirt, but better.

clearly have a thing for ray-bans. i never leave home without my wayfarer's, and the same goes for my aviator's. i like to have options.

i'm not a huge fan of wedges but i thought they looked cute with this outfit...so there you go. 

and no spring break is complete without a beer in hand. lots and lots of beer.

that's right, no tequila for me this time.


what would be your spring break uniform?

have a lovely weekend!
xoxo

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

what i wore.


dress {urban outfitters}
tights {target}
ankle boots {steve madden}
necklace {forever 21}


i've been really into the high bun-thing lately. my hair is finally long enough so any chance i get i throw that thing up there - probably because i'm lazy. my hair is really think so sometimes it's hard for it to hold and stay on the top of my head. i found it works best when it's wet. i was thinking of getting the hair bun maker, but i'm not sure. do any of you have it? does it work?

anyways.

i really need to stop taking outfit pictures on my iphone. 

again, laziness at its best.

i wore this outfit a few weeks ago on a sporadic date night down the street to circa. we had been  a few times for happy hour, but this was our first time grabbing food. 
we were pleasantly surprised.


we drank delicious wine and ordered the mussels as an appetizer, which were fantastic. the bread was delicious and perfect for soaking up all the juicy goodness at the end - my favorite part!

i ordered the wild mushroom and goat cheese ravioli which was satisfying. i love mushrooms and i love goat cheese. the two together was just a party in my mouth.

since boyfriend and i are trying to save some money for our 2013 peru trip, we decided that we would only go out to eat one to two nights a week. it's going to be a challenge because we love going out to eat, especially on the weekends (!) but we are going to try our hardest to cut back.

#realworldproblems

p.s. you can find me over on my bestie's blog today talking about my most memorable spring break. i can't believe i posted pictures. it's really embarrassing.

Monday, March 5, 2012

monday dreaming.

this past weekend was one for the books. it's been a while since i had one of those. i got to spend some quality time with boyfriend, cooking dinner together, watching a lot of hgtv, and snuggling on the couch watching a  movie (we watched the whistleblower - so good!). on saturday i had lunch with chelsea and whitney at cafe rio. that place is legit. we sat outside in the beautiful weather, enjoyed our delicious meals and chatted about life. later that night my bestie came over for a much needed girls night out. we hit the town hard that night, coming home around 4am. i woke up yesterday with no voice. that's when you know it was a good night.  

boyfriend and i also made a very "adult" decision over the weekend which i'll share at a later time when it becomes more finalized. we are SO excited and i can't wait to tell you all about it.

*if you follow me on twitter then you might already have a clue ;)

......

with the end of the weekend and the start of the work week, i usually find myself with a huge case of the monday's. to try and get out of this funk i've decided to start a weekly post on 'dreaming'. whether it's dreaming up a good meal, a fabulous vacation, or an extravagant wardrobe, it's sure to put someone in a good mood. then who knows...maybe one day these dreams will turn into a reality!

that would be nice.



machu picchu, peru

golden gate bridge, san francisco

eiffle tower, paris

lately, i've been dreaming a lot about traveling the world and can't seem to get these three destinations out of my mind. 

peru.
san francisco.
paris.

south america has been on our list of travel destinations for quite some time and the country of peru is at the top of our list. boyfriend and i already started saving our pennies in hopes of making this dream a reality in the spring of 2013. just some of the things we would do if we were there - hike machu picchu, roam the bustling city of lima, and jump in lake titicaca.

lake titicaca, peru

next on my travel list is san francisco. i honestly cannot say enough about this california city. after our 2010 trip we had short-lived plans to move there. but unfortunately the timing was just not right. making a cross-country move like that would have required a lot of money and time that we just did not have. we still have dreams to move there when the timing is right, but for now we just have to wait and see.

we're going back to san francisco in september 2013 for the america's cup and making a pit stop in napa for a few days. part of me is sad that we have to wait so long, but i absolutely cannot wait to go back! i can't get that place out of my mind - it's just permanently stuck there! in the mean time i'm going to be spending the next year and a half dreaming up every single inch of that city.

napa valley, california

up until a few months ago, paris was never on my list of travel destinations. not exactly sure why, but it just never stuck out. 

over the last few weeks i feel like i can't get away from this city of romance. every where i turn there is a picture, a story or a movie (hello, midnight in paris!) that makes me want to visit this city in a heartbeat. 

macaroons, streets lined with cafes, parisian fashion. all of it sounds so perfect to me. i keep dreaming about the boyfriend and i strolling the streets, stopping for an espresso at a local cafe, and taking fashion notes on all the fabulous women.

don't mind me. 

a trip to paris is not in the works for any time soon so until that time comes i will continue dreaming up this magical city. and of course pinning as many things as i can in pinterest.

:)


{all photos via my pinterest}


what places have you been dreaming up lately?

Thursday, March 1, 2012

tag, you're it.

i was tagged by the lovely ashley in this fun chain game and thought i'd play along. so here i am, posting eleven fun facts about myself and answering 11 fun questions.


facts:
1. i am named after my father, eric.
2. i am really skeeved out by raw chicken. and toothpaste. 
3. my front tooth was chipped in half during one crazy night out in college. let's just say a beer bottle and dancing was involved. i had to walk around campus with a chipped tooth for 2.5 weeks. that was cool.
4. i donated 11.5 inches of my hair last year.
5. i have a metal plate in my neck. but it is too small to set off a metal detector.
6. i am an all-american hurdler in track and field.
7. i failed backing up straight on my driving test ... i don't even know.
8. i've traveled to 14 different countries.
9. i'm terrified of flying.
10. i can crack my neck, back, shoulders, wrists, fingers, ankles and toes.
11. i have a fear of public speaking.


questions:

1. what is your favorite part about blogging?
connecting with so many lovely bloggers and them turning into real-life friends :)

2. name one thing on your bucket list.
travel all over indonesia. and go skiing in the swiss alps. 
i named two, so sue me.

3. what is your favorite city/place in the world?
if i had to choose my favorite city in the united states it would be san francisco, california. hands down. ::sigh:: one day we will move there. one day.
(we are going back there in september of 2013 for the america's cup. and making a stop in napa. oh, how i can't wait!)

if i had to choose my favorite city outside the united states then it would be florence, italy. i backpacked there in 2006 while studying abroad in madrid, spain and it was such a magical city. i would love to go back one day!

baker beach, san francisco - 2010

alamo square park, san francisco - 2010

standing in front of the duomo in florence. rocking gaucho pants, circa 2006

shopping at the san lorenzo market in florence - 2006


4. if you could tell us a time where you helped a stranger the most, when was it?
last week i served dinner to the homeless. i probably served around 100 strangers. it was really amazing.

5. what's the most adventurous thing you've ever done?
studied abroad in madrid, spain by myself and didn't know a.single.person. annnnd i couldn't really speak spanish.

6. what is your biggest fear?
death.

7. what is your guilty pleasure?
that's easy. i did a post on mine here.

8. can you recall your favorite childhood memory?
spending our summers at lake george in upstate new york with friends and family. we would rent cabins on the lake and spend the days boating, jet skiing, and tubing. at night we would play games and hang out by the campfire making s'mores. best.vacations.ever. *thanks mom and dad :)

9. name a tv show that you watch religiously?
friends. i can quote almost every episode. it's sad, really.

10. what is your biggest pet peeve?
people who snore. can't.even.deal.

11. three things you couldn't live without?
delicious sweets, really comfy socks, and a hair tie. yup.


what sort of fun facts do you have about yourself?
 i'd love to hear them!

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