Party in the Back Top + Jeans + Espadrilles || Girls’ Night out!

 If there is one combination that I’m always about, it’s white/cream top + jeans + (whatever shoe fits the situation)!!!

 It’s a classic..  It’s a no brainer!

And whenever I find fun and “interesting” white/cream tops, I’m IN!

They come through in a pinch, and I know that I can work them in whenever!!  They are always there when you need a “go to” fall back.

From the front….looks pretty basic!
Wait for it…I’m ALWAYS a sucker for an interesting back!  If you are unsure of a dress code.  You can play it casual in the front, and then….add a pop of fun in the back!

A mullet top if you will 😉

I posted on Friday another post with my friend and her daughter who came to stay with us a few weeks ago.We had my parents over for dinner since they knew Laura so well.

We had my parents over for dinner since they knew Laura so well, and then decided to take some pictures, because…duh.

Love ALL THESE LADIES!!!I remember when Kylie was 18 months old!!

SO weird…yet, she’s become such an amazing young woman!
Totally nailed the Charlie’s Angels pose!

HA!

On me…

Top- 10 Crosby Derek Lam (eBay)
Jeans- DL1961 Toni “midrise” (eBay, similar here)
Shoes- Banana Republic (old, similar here)
On Maya…
Sandals- Saltwater Sandals “Sun San”  (thrifted,)
Keeping it Real…
I have NO idea what’s going on with my face here, but hahahaha….Um…stretchy jeans?? 
(all pictures taken with a shutter release and tripod, except ones of Maya :))

dit-elle-Lauren

Off the shoulder top + Skinnies + Wedges | Girls Night Out!

 My girlfriend of over 20 years and her daughter came to stay with us a few weeks ago.

We shopped, we ate, we drank rose, and…we laughed.

What more could you ask for?

I mean…what’s the good of taking pics in front of your house if you can’t have a glass of wine while doing so?

hahaha

Ok, funny story.  We actually took the BUS to a neighborhood restaurant earlier in the evening.  HA!  We were a liiiiiiiittle more dressed up than most of the passengers.

Whatever…
Because no matter how big, they are always our babies right?? Playing with the remote.  Aka…taking a picture of herself!

On me…

Top- Sincerely Jules “Everly Top” (Nordstrom Rack currently only $29!)
Jeans- Citizens Of Humanity (thrifted, similar here)
Sandals- Ugg (thrifted, LOVE these here)
On Maya…
Dress- GapKids (thrifted, but similar here in two toned)
Shoes- Salt Water Sandals (thrifted)
Keeping it Real…
 Um….
Hi, my name is Lauren, and I’m a very enthusiastic laugher… 🙂
Two things about this.  YES, the guy didn’t realize he was walking into our shot until the LAST minute.  Oh, and THEN..Maya thought it would be hilarious to pull my top down!
Good times… 😉 I have no idea what’s going on here haha.
(all pictures taken with a shutter release and tripod, except ones of Maya :))

dit-elle-Lauren

Cold Slow Cooker Chicken With Mango, Avocado, Spinach, Tomatoes, Peppers, and Quinoa

Yes, that’s a mouthful of a title, but it’s a flavor explosion in your mouth too!!

I tend to forget about my slow cooker in the summer, because…hot!  BUT…the biggest reason I use my slow cooker is because of it’s convenience factor.  THAT is needed all year round!

The other day, I knew I’d be running around all day and wouldn’t be getting home until right around dinner time.  Slow cooker to the rescue.

What you need…

  • 4-5 Chicken Breasts (I actually threw mine in frozen!)
  • 1 Medium yellow onion  diced
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 1/4 Teaspoon crushed garlic
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Crushed Ginger
  • 1 Cup Organic Mango Nectar
  • 1 Large Mango
  • 1 Large Avocado
  • 1 Cup diced peppers (I used a yellow, orange, and red)
  • 1 Cup Cherry or grape tomatoes.  I used multi colored ones.
  • 4-5 cups baby spinach
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • 1 Cup uncooked quinoa

What you do…

  • Put Olive Oil, Garlic, Ginger, and Onion down and mix.
  • Lay Chicken Breasts on top.  Mine were frozen.  I’m sure if they were thawed, they might just be more tender!  BUT…if you don’t have time (as I never do)  you can put them in frozen as an FYI…
  • Pour the cup of Mango nectar (honestly, you could use orange juice too!  It all cooks away…
  • Here’s the odd/specific timing part.  You can totally mess around with this timing depending on when you will be home!  I started this in the morning.  Cooked it on high for 4 hours.   I added the quinoa about 30 minutes before it was done.   Then took the chicken out, chopped it (probably could have shredded it had it been on low for longer!).  I added the chicken back in to soak up a little more juice.
  • While it was still in warming mode, and right before I took it out, I added all the spinach and tossed it around.
  • Then I took it all out and placed it in a bowl to cool for a few hours.
  • Either earlier when it’s cooking or later depending on when you have time.  Dice the mango, avocado, peppers, and tomatoes.
  • Add all the diced fruits and vegetables on top, salt and pepper to taste, and serve!

Enjoy!dit-elle-Lauren

Little Black Dresses for my birthday…

 I posted on Friday about my early birthday celebration over the weekend.

The upside to having  your birthday during the week, is that you get a double celebration!

We had my parents over for dinner on my actual birthday, and then went outside after dinner for a few pictures. I LOVE these shots!  Her leaping into my arms and looking directly at the camera on the tripod….as if there is anyone there!

Funny, no?
Loooooooove!! Maya saw this picture and said “Look! We’re both twirling at the same time!!” 👯💃🏼💃🏼 I’ve tried to do this a few times and failed miserably or…comically! 😂. This time… #Nailedit 🤗 🙌🏻 And…convinced the Huz to get in a few! She loves her Meme and BOPO! And…this dress was made for twirling!  As most Hanna Andersson dresses are!  Which is why they are a favorite of ours!

On me…

Dress- Ella Moss (Old, but similar here and here.)
Sandals- J. Litvack (thrifted, similar here and here.)
On Maya…
Dress- Hanna Andersson (thrifted)
Keeping it Real…
I honestly could have done an entire blog post on the keeping it real from this!  Mainly because I took SO many pics!  I’ll keep it to a few…
Honestly, I LOVE this next one!  SO….kind of a cheat on the “keeping it real”, but far from perfect, which I love!
Maya is all about saying “NO PICTURES!  I don’t want to go take pictures!!”
BUT….if I want to take a picture without her?  She’s ALL up in there!
Here’s a video compilation that my dad took while I was taking pictures.  FYI, a neighbor had composted recently and that’s what was stinky haha. And…Maya running and jumping her hand in front of the camera! AND…my laugh.  Go big or go home, right?
(all pictures taken with a shutter release and tripod, except ones of Maya :))

dit-elle-Lauren

Silk Rompers + Peep Toe Clogs || Happy Birthday to me…

 I know it might be weird, but odd birthdays get me more than even ones.  It’s not that 43 is bad, but it just seems a lot older than 42!  Or maybe it’s that 42 with it’s even number sounded better to me?  All that to say….

43.

One year closer to MID 40’s!  And, I’m in denial…

I got to celebrate a little early over the weekend with the Huz.  My parents had given us some gift certificates, so we ventured out of West Seattle into Downtown.  It’s only 15 minutes away for us, but we rarely leave our little neighborhood, because…our neighborhood rocks!

We at a little early, so that we could come home to say good night to Maya, and I ended up taking these images when we got home around 9:00.
We had texted Charlie ahead of time to let her stay up until we got home.

Yay for teenage brothers that want to babysit!!

When I was getting ready, Maya asked if she could put on a fancy dress.

“I want to look good for Daddy, because I kind of have a crush on him.  He’s sooooo handsome!”

COULD YOU DIE?!!

So glad she still had it on when we got home! Yeah…she was happy to take pics with me, but her alone?  NOT happening… 🙂
Before all this…

Iphone snaps of our dinner out at Tom Douglas’s The Carlile Room.

Yes, we ate ALL that!  BUT…they were somewhat smaller portions…

They had us at the “Book of Booze”…hahaha

On me…

Romber- Joie “Amara Romper” (old, similar here)
Clogs- Miz Mooz (old, similar here )
On Maya…
Dress- Crewcuts (thrifted, but similar here )
Keeping it Real…
Diiiiiiiidn’t quite time these right haha.
  Not so graceful dismount… 🙂
(all pictures taken with a shutter release and tripod, except ones of Maya :))

dit-elle-Lauren

Dresses over Jeans + Clogs and Vintage Dresses + Dr Martens || Maya’s Pre K Graduation

 So…Maya graduated Pre-K over 3 weeks ago, but summer has been a bit of a blur!  I finally had a break in work, so I’m hoping to catch up on all the fun pictures we’ve taken!

We took these when we got home from dinner. I’ve had this top (ok, technically it was sold as a dress, but…that never happened!) for SO long, and I still love it!   I think it’s such a fun alternative for those of us that might be past the point of a mini dress to pair it with a pair of skinny jeans!

I remember wearing it when I was pregnant with Maya! GAh, I looooooove capturing us looking at eachother! I keep saying “This is the last time…”

But….LOVE this next one! And this is how she takes posed pictures now haha. BUT….before all that fun, we walked to her school for the last time…

SNIFF SNIFF And she graduated!!!

Even more SNIFF SNIFF!!!!

Maya, we could not be more proud of the funny, smart, witty, amazing little girl you are becoming!!!  You brighten everyone’s day who has the pleasure of being around you, and we are SO lucky that you brighten ours daily!

We love you!!

On me…

Jean Jacket- 3×1 thrifted for $10!!! (similar here retails for $300!!)
Top/Dress- Ghita (old, but found it in blue! or Similar here and love this here)
Clogs- Korks by Kork Ease “Marcia Clog” (eBay sold out, here in black, similar here in brown)
On Maya…
Dress- Pasufas (thrifted, but similar here)
Leggings- Hanna Andersson (thrifted, similar lighter color here)
Keeping it Real…
For those that have followed for a while…nope, still not out of the licking phase… 😉 The dismounts of the throws don’t always look as good haha.
(all pictures taken with a self timer/shutter release and tripod, except ones of Maya :))

dit-elle-Lauren

Healthier Hello Dolly Bars

I haven’t had much time to bake lately, much less take pictures and blog about it!  BUT…I had a client reschedule this past weekend, and I knew it would make Maya super happy if we made something together, so…we did!

I’d been dying to try Feasting on Fruits “Vegan Magic Cookie Bars” recipe ever since I saw her post it on Instagram.  The originals are my husband’s all time favorite bar cookie, so I couldn’t wait to try a healthier version.

While they are not as ooey gooey and decadent as the original version, they are really good!  I got a thumbs up from all the taste testers, including grandparents, teenage stepson, Maya, AND the Huz!

What you need…

ALMOND CRUST OPTION (she posts an oat crust option too)

What to do…

  • Preheat the oven to 350F and grab a cute assistant 😉

  • For the almond crust, combine the almond flour and maple syrup in a bowl. Mix to create a sticky and clumpy dough that holds together when pressed. Add 1 tbsp water if it seems too dry.

  • Press the crust into an 8x8baking dish  lined with parchment paper (I didn’t have any, so I just greased the pan). Bake for 10 minutes at 350F. Remove from the oven and cool for at least 10 minutes.

  • While the crust is cooling, blend the bananas until smooth.

  • Pour the banana puree on top of the crust.

  • Sprinkle on the chocolate chips, nuts, and coconut. Gently press down until the banana puree rises up covering everything.

  • Bake for 35 minutes at 350F.

  • Cool then chill (she said to do it overnight, but we ate them later that evening!)

    Enjoy!

    dit-elle-Lauren