Monday, September 19, 2011

Brother-Sister Day

Wow, I have been SO bad with my blog this month.  It's clear to see school has taken a toll on me.  Classes, friends, family visits, and work.  You name it, I've done it... which has put my lovely blog on the backseat.  Starting this week I am determined to change things around!  This past weekend was spent with my brother, Charlie, in Cambridge.  Charlie has officially started University and I visited to make the transition a little easier. Colder weather is quickly approaching therefore comfy sweaters and scarfs are officially back on!

Sunglasses: RayBan, Sweater and scarf: Gap, Purse: Vintage

Jeans: American Eagle, Shoes: Toms
Good Luck Charlie with your first semester!

Monday, September 5, 2011

September Favorites

A few things that make September that much better...

September Issues

Nude flats with pretty details

M&M's: A perfect late night snack for any student
Loose fitting Fall shirt

A beautifully organized space (link)
With Fall quickly approaching, September will be filled with finding new closet staples, organizing my new room to make studying efficient and enjoying everything college has to offer.  I can't wait!

Operation Get Organized

This week has been very hectic.  I've officially moved back to school to embark on my final year at Babson College.  I'm living with five amazing girls and we're all slowly getting back into the fast pace of college.  It's always such a change coming back from summer internships and lazy days in the sun but I'm determined to make my last year my best! I consider myself a pretty easy going person... until it comes to my Agenda.  For years I was on a hunt to find the perfect agenda or planner. The size, detailing and look had to be perfect... and I didn't stop until I found one that I loved.  MomAgenda is a company started y a mother to help other mothers with their hectic lives filled with activities and appointments.  I must make it very clear that I am NOT a mother, but MomAgenda offers a line of MyAgenda, which is for college students and young women.

Investing in a professional and appropriate agenda is important.  I currently own the zebra print MyAgenda and keep it close at all times.  I consider it the key to keeping me organized when hectic days turn into hectic weeks! Who said agendas had to be boring?

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Chloé Wears Cargo

My sister Chloé came back from camp a few days ago and I've taken every advantage I have to spend time with her.  Luckily, she was patient enough to help me on my blog!  Chloé is wearing an outfit we both love! Cargo is so easy to wear and I find myself buying jackets, boots and pants that have some sort of cargo inspiration.

Shirt: Banana Republic, Purse: Vintage

Cargo Pants: Citizens of Humanity

Necklaces: Anthropologie and shop in London

Shoes: Steve Madden

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

When life gives you lemons

I made Ina Gartens lemon pound cake this past weekend for a family dinner and it was a huge hit.  This recipe was discovered three years ago when I took on the challenge of making one of my first cakes from scratch.  To my surprise, it turned out tasting amazing!  It's a recipe I continue to make and never get tired of.  When life gives you lemons, I make lemon pound cake.

Lemons used for the pound cake

Berries to accompany the cake

The final product!
The recipe can be found HERE.  Enjoy!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Pasta a la Improv

Last nights dinner was a "find it in the fridge, put it all together and hope it tastes good" kind of dish.  We were inspired by a pasta a la carbonara but put out own twist on it (also known as... we didn't have all the ingredients!).  Dinner ended up being super easy, quick and delicious! I had to share our improvising skills.

1 box of pasta
Lots of peas
2 eggs
Grated parmesan cheese (1 cup)
Chopped Parsley
Bacon (as little or as much as you like)

(We were six people last night for dinner and had left overs, therefore make sure to adjust recipe if you are less or more that six)

Bacon after being cut into cubes and cooking in the pan. 

Fresh parsley

The final product.  Simple but so good!
Mix the two eggs and grated cheese in a large bowl and set aside.  Boil water and once ready add the pasta.  Cut the bacon into small cubes and cook in a frying pan until crispy.  Prepare and peas and cut the parsley finely.

Once all the ingredients are ready, add them to the large bowl starting with the pasta, followed by the bacon, peas and the parsley.  We didn't use olive oil but if you are looking for a little more taste, I would recommend it!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Fall Bound

Chilly August weather calls for light sweaters and denim.  Here's a day to night outfit that leaves me feeling great and comfortable

Sweater (Vince), Necklace (J.Crew), Tank (Banana Republic) 

Satchel (Marc by Marc Jacobs), Denim (Joe's Jeans), Flats (Pretty Ballerina)

Hello Hali

Yesterday afternoon, my mother, brother and I drove up to Halifax, Nova Scotia to visit universities and explore the city.  I haven't spent much time at all in the Maritimes but  I love everything I've seen in Halifax so far.  It's the perfect university "city-town" with great restaurants, fun stores and amazing views.  I carried my camera around today to take some pictures of the pretty scenery.

My go-to breakfast on the run

I love this little red hut/house

A view from the harbor

I felt I had to add this picture... the colours of all the houses are great
Today, we visited two schools, visited a few shops where I found some great pieces, and went to a fun restaurant! If ever in Halifax, make sure to set aside a time to eat at "The Bicycle Thief".  Great drinks and amazing fries!  Until next time Hali...

Monday, August 15, 2011

Classic Rocker

When it comes to online shopping... or should I say browsing... I love  Although they do have some expensive brands, they have some good deals and always keep me on my toes with up and coming trends. Gretchen Jones has recently launched and not-for-profit jewelry collection exclusively for Piperlime.  She has a collection of gold pieces with a classic rocker edge.  I love it!!

A few favorites...
Philosopher's Stone Ring

Follow the Omens Bracelets

Beginner's Luck Bracelet
I love the rustic gold and simple shapes all of these pieces offer.  I am surely going to have to invest! 

My Welcome Tree

The simplest things are often the best.  I recently noticed this simple yet attractive bench and realized there's something about this tree that I love.  The wrap around bench makes it so welcoming!  Reading a book on a sunny day on this bench seems to represent perfection.

As I start to brace myself to the return of school, places like this make it that much harder to see summer end.

Flowers Part Two

As mentioned in a previous post,  I can be a tad bit obsessed with flowers, especially in the summer. I love the colours and smells they add to anything.  When I have a camera in hand,  I can't help snapping shots of flowers I find lovely.  When it comes to flowers, I judge them by their cover... by how pretty they are!  Here are some pictures of some flowers I've loved this past week.


I love the contrast with the dark background

Pretty and Pink

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Something of a Mess

One of the easiest and best tasting dessert is a Shortcake Mess (This is not actually the name but I've dubbed it this for the past few months, and it just seems to work!) It's great when a large crowd it expected for dinner. One big bowl is all you need!

Finished product!
1 pound cake (bought or homemade)
Simple Syrup (water with a little sugar)
A bunch of strawberries
Strawberry jam
Whipped Cream

In this case, I buy the pound cake, and cut it into slices.  Once cut, brush some simple syrup onto the shortcake to make it moist.
Pound cake slices
Wash and cut the strawberries, and set aside.  Once everything is out and ready, pick an appropriate bowl or dish and start stacking!
Fresh strawberries ready to be cut

Let the layering begin!
I start with the pound cake on the bottom, and then add some strawberry jam, strawberries and finally whipped cream.  Repeat the layers until you get to the top of the bowl! Enjoy!

Five is the Magic Number

I started my blog in March, and it's crazy to think that August is already here.  "Les idées d'Olivia" has been a personal project and hobby of mine.  I wanted to see if I could actually have a blog... even though I wasn't sure what direction I wanted to take, I just did it! I write about what inspires me, what I love, what I would like to share in the moment. Lately, food and culinary have been a big part of my days.  I spend hours going through cookbooks, old family recipes and magazines... and love every moment of it!  It must be partly to the fact that I have a kitchen available and a family who is willing to try anything I make! 

I've decided to start sharing things that inspire me and what I'm currently loving every month.  5 inspirations seems like the perfect number, not too little and not too much.  Here goes August....


Colourful Anthropologie latte bowls
My August Drink: The Skinny Girl Margarita!
Fresh cut watermelon
The perfect white kitchens with yellow accents (link)
 This is what I'm loving today, what about you?

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

The Dressing to my Salad

Salads are great, but a bad dressing can make a great salad a terrible one.  I've always been a fan of salads, but get very particular when it comes to finding the perfect dressing.  I came across a very simple dressing in a William-Sonoma cookbook, and have never looked back.  Although this dressing is very simple, I consider it my safety blanket.  It is the perfect amount of light yet very tasty.

Key ingredients: Dijon mustard, olive oil, and red wine vinegar

Simple dressing

A great side salad to be served with dinner!
3 tbs of extra virgin olive oil
1 tbs of red wine vinegar
1 tsp of dijon mustard
1 tsp of salt (or a little less!)

Mix it all together, and there you have it! I have stopped measuring all my ingredients, since the amount of dressing usually varies with the size of the salad.  Just make sure to keep the red wine vinegar and olive oil to about a 1:3 ratio.  More dijon makes a stronger tasting dressing, therefore, put the amount you feel necessary.  This really is my go-to when it comes to making an amazing salad.

Une belle journée

Sleep in, pancakes, sunshine, dock, breeze, water, sunhat, SPF 30, nap, BBQ, camp fire.... in my eyes, a truly perfect day.  Here are some shots from a lazy day on a dock

Blueberry Pancakes
Adirondack chair looking over Moosehead Lake
Joe on his way out for a sail

Cooper and I

Cooper seemed to find this comfortable!

Ending to a great day!

With school and hectic schedules coming up, I cherish the lazy summer days.  This is my idea of the perfect day! What's yours?

Classic French Toasts

A breakfast of champions
I made these french toasts last Sunday for my brother, Toma.  My family and I all love breakfast... I've been lucky enough to grow up in a house where weekend mornings were spent cooking big homemade breakfasts.  Eggs, pancakes, waffles, crêpes... you name it, my family can make it!  French toast is always pretty simple, but oh so satisfying! I make sure to let the bread soak in the egg and milk mixture long enough so that all the goodness gets soaked up!

My secret for making french toasts even better? a little sugar on top, along with maple syrup. 

I used 2 eggs and about a 1/3 cup of milk to make the french toast mix, and added a dash of orange juice (it just adds a little extra).

What's a proper weekend without a proper breakfast? Enjoy!