Mother’s Day Fare

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Last weekend, Emily and I went to our parents’ house to celebrate our lovely and incomparable mother. She’s one of the kindest ladies I know, who will unfailingly stop on her way to work to rescue a lost dog or sneak into my house on the morning of my birthday to decorate the bathroom mirror with lipstick. (In the picture above, she’s that cutie in the middle. Shoutout to my Aunt Linda and Uncle Bob, too.)

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After attending church with my grandparents and enjoying a mimosa-infused brunch, the three of us headed home for a ladies’ day. We snuggled with the dogs (nothing unusual about that though), painted our nails, watched Wild (which is just beautiful, by the way), and took a break for afternoon tea. I made chocolate-orange popovers and little tea sandwiches for the occasion. Of course, it was a bit of an ode to my mom’s mom, the tea and petit fours queen.

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For dinner, I made individual vegetarian pot pies, a beet and goat cheese salad, and grapefruit bars for dessert. My cooking at home has waned significantly in the past few months, so I go a little crazy when I get the chance. It was a day of eating, but what holiday isn’t? Here’s my recipe for veggie pot pies. (adapted from this one).

Individual Vegetarian Pot Pies // makes 4

Ingredients: 
1 head of broccoli, chopped into florets
3 large carrots, peeled and chopped
1/2 sweet onion, chopped
2 Tbsp. of butter
1 c. reduced-fat milk
3 Tbsp. flour
4 oz. shredded cheddar cheese
salt + pepper to taste
pinch of cayenne
1 sheet puff pastry
1 egg, whisked

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

2. Melt butter in a saucepan and sauté the broccoli, covered, for a few minutes. Add the carrots and onions, and sauté for several more minutes, until they’re beginning to get soft.

3. Combine milk and flour in a large saucepan over medium heat by whisking constantly. Reduce heat to low and simmer 3-5 minutes, until mixture is thick, continuing to whisk. Remove from heat and whisk in cheese slowly. Season with salt, pepper, and cayenne. Don’t worry – it’s supposed to be that thick. If you’re struggling with the consistency, you can add a touch more milk. Fold in the veggies.

4. Cut the puff pastry sheet into four equal squares. Cut an X in the middle of each piece of puff pastry to vent. Divide the veggies-cheese mixture into four ramekins that have been sprayed with cooking spray. Top each with puff pastry and brush with egg wash. Bake for 12-14 minutes or until puff pastry is puffy and golden brown.

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Summer Vibes

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Last weekend Domenico was kind enough to take some graduation pictures of me. We spent the morning walking around downtown Phoenix, finding pretty murals and painted stairs and snapping pictures. It was a beautifully breezy day, and I got a little bit of that summertime feeling.

This week I also: attended my last class as an undergrad, booked a sweet little Airbnb in Paris, bought my cap and gown, and dreamed of the canals in Amsterdam. There are so many scary and wonderful things happening lately, it’s hard to even keep up.

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top – TJ Maxx // shorts – Gap outlet store // shoes – Steve Madden // Phoenix brooch – gift from Domenico // watch – Geneva (with a new Fossil mint band that I love) // “best” bobby pin – Ban.do (courtesy of Kaylie)

Also, just because this is too good to keep to myself, here’s my hapless attempt at looking cute and blowing confetti. Adulthood, here I am!

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Bitter and Twisted + Vovomeena (cocktails + brunch)

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Last night Kaylie, Rylee, and I went out to a cocktail parlour that recently opened in downtown Phoenix: Bitter and Twisted. By the time we made and ate these soba noodles and found a parking spot downtown, it was pretty packed. We had an hour to kill and decided to get a drink at Blue Hound Kitchen, another Phoenix cocktail bar that’s been on my list for months. I got a cider at Blue Hound and a very fancy drink at Bitter and Twisted that featured tequila, limoncello, lime, and coconut foam, which you can see gave me a cocktail mustache. As a very inexperienced drinker (emphasis on the very), it doesn’t take much for me to get silly, so this was exactly my idea of a girls’ night out.

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While sipping my cocktail at Bitter and Twisted, I had a very Blair moment in which I said, and I quote: I just need to be ready to brunch at 11 tomorrow. It was very true though, because this morning, Mom, Emily, and I drove back downtown for a very tasty brunch at Vovomeena. Besides Screen Door in Portland, Vovomeena is home to my favorite brunch. Our order included the pain perdu, johnnycakes (my personal favorite), and Mexican Benedict. In addition to the food, this place is just so comfy and beautiful. My dream house would look awfully similar to Vovomeena – or I could just live in the restaurant and eat brunch daily.

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We decided to extend our brunch into a shopping trip to Scottsdale Fashion Square, where my mom treated us to some very nice and very unnecessary purchases. That’s just how my overly generous mom rolls though, and now I have some hair accessories from Anthropologie that I’ve been coveting for a while. After all my outings this weekend, I think I need to spend a solid week eating lunch in the break room at work and cooking at home. I can only take so much glamour. I’ve also realized how much I want/need to spend time downtown. In the past few years, I’ve gotten to know the area fairly well, but Kaylie and my parents have explored less, and I really want to show them all the gems I’ve found. Of course, it never hurts to explore the city that’s in your own backyard.