Thursday, April 27, 2017

What I'm Wearing Now: April


Spring Style Essentials
1. Off The Shoulder Lyocell Tunic, H&M Conscious  //  2. Silver Hoop Earrings Set, H&M  //  3. Clear Mirrored Sunnies (only $9.99!), H&M  //  4. Classic Date Black Watch, Lord Timepieces (take 10% off with code BEAN)  // 5.  Jersey Tee, H&M  //  6.  Magic Braid Crossbody Bag, Lucky Brand  //  7.  Pinter Wash Jean Jacket, Madewell  //  8. The Perfect Jean Short, Madewell  //  9. Black Leggings, Target  //  10. Morocco Sandals in Brown, Minnetonka  //  11. Madison Boots, Trask  //  12. Rene Sandal, Trask  //  13. Palm Pattern Dress, H&M  


You guys, this is my favorite  What I'm Wearing Now in a while. Spring is finally here, like for real (the occasional semi-warm day doesn't count), and man is it glorious. There is nothing more freeing to me than being able to look in my closet each morning and (usually) pull out pieces suited for warmer temperatures. This month I've been really lucky, because not only did I spent the first week of it in Arizona, it's been mostly beautiful outside since we returned home as well. I've picked up a few new dresses for the season, pulled out my cut-offs and kimonos, and have been feeling a whole lot more inspired when it comes to my clothes.

In addition to the pieces you see above, I've been wearing a whole lot of affordable Target finds - like this dress and this dress (both under $30!) - which I couldn't include in the collage simply because the only images I could find were of people wearing them. (You may recognize this one from Monday's outfit post, and you'll see me sporting this one in an upcoming post as well.) I've also been wearing these sandals nonstop and even got a matching pair for Essley (also coming in an outfit post soon). And like last month, I've been rocking hoop earrings almost everyday, along with this gorgeous set of 7 pairs of earrings I snagged at Free People for only $18. My favorite denim jacket has been on steady rotation as well. Style life is good in springtime.

I'm looking to pick up some new lightweight tops to wear with cut-offs at the weather gets even warmer in the coming weeks, and would love to hear any suggestions you have for your favorites!

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Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Individual Mexican Style Layer Dips


Individual Mexican Style Layer Dips
Individual Mexican Style Layer Dips

Cinco de Mayo is next week, and while this holiday is actually a commemoration marking Mexico's victory over the French at the Battle of Puebla way back in 1862, here in the U.S. the date has become more of a celebration of Mexican-American culture, music, and food. And we all know that I have a profound love for (okay, maybe even a slight obsession with) Mexican-inspired cuisine. So I say that a day that includes consuming it (along with other delights like fresh Margaritas; yes please) as a form of fiesta is something pretty freaking wonderful, and I always find a way to take advantage.

In preparation for a little Cinco de Mayo gathering, I decided to put together a recipe for one of my favorite Mexican-American snacks (7 layer dip) in a way that was a little more party-friendly in terms of serving than a big old casserole dish. I also wanted to make it (just a tiny bit) healthier by switching out a few ingredients in exchange for others (but I'll get to that in a minute). These individual layer dips are so easy to make, incredibly delicious, and they look pretty too.

Individual Mexican Style Layer Dips
Individual Mexican Style Layer Dips
Individual Mexican Style Layer Dips

Serves 6

INGREDIENTS

1-1/2 cups Rojo's Salsas (I like to use 2; usually Homestyle and Restaurant Style, or their new Organic Traditional)
1 can (16 oz) vegetarian refried beans
1 large ripe avocado
1 cup plain Greek yogurt
1/2-1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
6-8 black olives, slicked
small bunch green onions, sliced
a few pieces of cilantro
chili powder
cumin
salt
2-3 limes

In a small bowl, mix the refried beans with chili powder, cumin, and a little salt to taste. In another small bowl, make the guacamole by mashing up the avocado in a bowl with a couple dashes of salt and some fresh squeezed lime juice. Now start layering! Set out 6 medium sized glasses and evenly divide the beans, followed by the guacamole, the Greek yogurt, and the Rojo's Salsa. Top that with a sprinkle of cheese, some black olives, and some green onion slices. Then sprinkle on a little chili powder and a squeeze of lime on the top of each glass, and garnish with cilantro and a tortilla chip. Fiesta in a glass!

Individual Mexican Style Layer Dips
Individual Mexican Style Layer Dips
Individual Mexican Style Layer Dips

In addition to the fact this layer dip is perfect for celebrations (and let's face it, cuter and more fun too) because of the individually sized servings, it's also healthier than traditional 7-layer dips, which are loaded with sour cream, cheese, and salt. Swapping out sour cream for plain Greek yogurt not only makes for a creamier, more flavorful dip, it also increased the protein and cuts back on the calories. I also like to use shredded cheese as more of a garnish than a layer. Cheddar is a great choice because the flavor is strong so you need less. And I always choose Rojo's Salsas because they are made with premium, fresh-cut ingredients in small batches with, and are refrigerated instead of jarred. It's no secret that, like Mexican inspired food, I'm a big fan of Rojo's. (Two of my favorite recipes use their salsas - Healthy Southwestern Stuffed Sweet Potatoes and Vegan Black Bean and Salsa Soup.) We grow tomatoes in our summer container gardens and I used to make salsa with them all the time - but now I just buy Rojo's. They taste just as fresh and even more delicious than our home grown salsas, and (major bonus) all I have to do is open the container.


Are you doing anything to celebrate Cinco de Mayo this year? If you're making a special dish for it, I'd love to hear your recipe!


This post is in partnership with Rojo's Salsa. Thank you for supporting the brands that help make Bubby and Bean possible.

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Monday, April 24, 2017

Girls In the Desert



When we were in Arizona a couple of weeks ago, we decided to head out to our favorite place to explore and take photos. It's a piece of unoccupied land in the Sonoran desert not far from Robbie's parent's house in Scottsdale, and while it's admittedly surrounded by the obvious civilization of the city, it feels completed secluded when you're there. We go there every year to snap pictures (usually for outfit posts but also for fun), and this year Essley wanted to come with us. We've been trying to teach her about nature and the environment, and this seemed like a great way for her to learn about a completely different type of ecosystem than what she's used to where we live, while also having some fun. (We also have a cool Earth Day inspired project stemming from this photoshoot; stay tuned for more on that in a couple of weeks.)

We were planning to go out to dinner that night so I was already sort of dressed up (for me, anyway), and while the photos we took weren't purposely for an outfit post, it kind of turned out that way. And funny enough, Essley and I were not intentionally dressed alike. I know, I know - that seems impossible, considering how similar the dresses appear in these photos. But it's true. In person, the pieces are quite different - mine is a fabric-heavy, super flowy, sort-of-bell sleeve woven fabric dress with a lot of embellishment, and Essley's is a simple jersey knit cotton jumper dress. The patterns are also not that alike in person, but in the photos they're almost identical. We didn't realize how much we appeared to be twinning until we looked back through the photos. Essley and I don't often do the mommy and me dress alike thing, but I think I might kind of like it...

... CLICK THROUGH HERE TO READ MORE >>


Thursday, April 20, 2017

Stay Weird


Stay Weird
From top:  1   |   2   |   3   |   4   |   5   |    6   |   7   |   8


You guys know I can't resist some good word inspiration. If you're into it like I am, you can find a bunch more of my favorites here.



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Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Sweet Corn and Black Bean Quinoa Salad


Sweet Corn and Black Bean Quinoa Salad
This post was sponsored by Sunshine Sweet Corn as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own.

You guys are all well aware by now that I'm a summer person. Give me all the flowing dresses and beach hangs in the sunshine and barefoot dancing under the stars and delicious summertime foods. And in my opinion, there is no food that screams summer like corn on the cob. I crave it all year round, but only recently did I discover that I could find Sunshine Sweet corn, grown in Florida, in the spring as well. I was instantly excited, and proceeded to spend a bunch of time on the Sunshine Sweet Corn website perusing all of their mouth watering recipes to make for my family. I finally settled on the sweet corn and bean quinoa salad, both because anything with black beans and corn is an instant winner in my book, and because it looked just as healthy as it did tasty. And I'm so glad I went for it. We've now had it several time for both lunch and dinner, and it was so incredibly good that I decided I had to share it with all of you as well. You're going to love it, I promise.


Number of servings: 4 to 6 

INGREDIENTS
3 cups fresh sweet corn kernels (4 medium Sunshine Sweet ears)
3 cups cooked and cooled quinoa*
1 can (15 ounces) black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup diced red and green bell pepper
1/2 cup chopped red onion
1/4 cup thinly sliced scallions
1/3 cup olive oil
3 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro leaves

(I'm a vegetarian, but you can also add 8 ounces cooked salad shrimp, or 2 cups cooked chicken, smoked turkey, or ham cut into 1/2 inch cubes to the salad if you'd like.)

INSTRUCTIONS
In a large bowl, toss corn (just cook in boiling water for 4-6 minutes then remove kernels with a sharp knife or corn zipper), quinoa (*prepare with 1 cup uncooked quinoa, according to package directions), beans, peppers, onion, and scallions (and shrimp or other meat, if using). To make the vinaigrette, in a sealable container, combine olive oil, vinegar, mustard, sugar, salt and pepper; shake until the mixture thickens, about 60 seconds. Pour the vinaigrette over the quinoa mixture and toss to combine. Just before serving, sprinkle with the cilantro. Garnish with halved cherry tomatoes,  and/or serve on a bed of greens. (We love it on organic baby spring greens. The best!)


This salad keeps well, so it's great to make ahead of time, and makes for some really great leftovers too. And while I'm a huge fan of quinoa and black beans, it's the Sunshine Sweet Corn that's the star of the show. It's deliciously sweet, fresh tasting, and tender, and it's also non-GMO (a big deal to me) and regulated for quality control. I'm looking forward to adding it to a bunch more of my spring recipes, now that I know it's available this time of year. If you're looking for the best tasting corn you've ever had in April and May, Sunshine Sweet Corn is the way to go. Just visit your local grocery store, pick some up, and make this recipe. Then visit their website for a whole bunch of other incredible recipes that will channel summer - but that you can make right now.


Who else is a summertime food fan? Do you have any favorite recipes that include Sunshine Sweet Corn?

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