Friday, October 30, 2015

Friday Five | Vol. 4

It's finally the weekend! Are you excited for Friday Five? I know I am!

This week was good, but it definitely dragged a little for me. As someone who really loves to travel, I am actually excited to be at home with very few weekend plans and Jake is too since he was on the "road" for the past 3 weekends! It'll be nice to kick back, relax and .... start planning my next trip {I'm only half joking}...


In honor of Halloween, I was listening to NPR the other morning {yes, I am turning into my mom} and I heard a really interesting interview about this book.  It's now on my to-read list on goodreads.  

Public Service Announcement: I know I wrote about Starbucks last week, but have you tried the Toasted Graham Latte yet? I had one yesterday and it is one of the best Starbucks drinks I've had in a long time.   

I was recently asked to participate in a Travel & Tourism panel and we just received our first assignment. It's about the four phases of the consumer journey that travelers experience when traveling: dreaming, planning, experiencing and reflecting. This sounds right up my alley. 

Have you tried bolstering before? We did it in my yoga class and it is LIFE. CHANGING. Promise. 

And lastly... Adele. Hello.  If you have been living under a rock, you MUST listen to this song and/or watch the video. Actually, watch the video. and do it now. 


Any fun weekend plans? It is Halloween after all! I can't remember the last time I dressed up. Maybe it was 5ish years ago? Anyway, I just use it as an excuse to eat more candy than usual. and that is totally socially acceptable. 

xoxo,

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Stating the Obvious

When was the last time you wore a graphic tee? 6th grade? Yeah, me too.  Until now. I saw this tee all over Instagram this summer and had to have it. It's so fun and playful and different from what I usually wear.  I also just recently bought my first pair of ripped denim Levi's -- you may not be able to tell from these photos, but the jeans are ripped at the knee.  Whaaaaat??! It's getting crazy over here!  Read: who buys clothes they can't wear to work?!? {sad face}.    

Anyway, these jeans are so comfy and are quickly becoming my favorite Fall staple. I haven't bought a pair of Levi's in probably 20+ years {whoa, I am way too young to be saying this}, but I'm kind of obsessed with them.  Lastly, I scored these chelsea booties from Old Navy for $12. I don't care if they fall apart tomorrow since I've already worn them a ton. One of my favorite buys of the season so far. 

anthropologie striped tee

anthropologie striped tee

anthropologie striped tee

anthropologie striped tee

What are your favorite fall staples?

| The Deets |

Denim | Levi's 711 Skinny in Black Tide Deconstructed
Tee | Anthro Sundry Striped Weekend Tee
Sunnies | Karen Walker The Number One via Endless Eyewear™. On Rotation.
Booties | Old Navy Chelsea Ankle Boots 

Happy Shopping,




The Fine Print: Vintage Modern contains advertising and affiliate marketing links. This means that I may get commission on sales of the products that I link on the blog. As a dear reader of mine, I want you to know that if you follow a link and make a purchase from an affiliate site, then I will make a commission from that purchase. sponsors, brand collaborations and affiliates make this blog possible.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Hiking Fools

Jake and I were on a real hiking kick this summer -- it forces you outside in the fresh air, you get exercise and my favorite -- you're rewarded with view at the end. It all started when I began researching about the Blue Ridge Parkway and we took 3 trips there in less than the span of a month. There is nothing on this earth like the Blue Ridge Parkway but it is 2 hours away from Charlotte, which is a little much for a day trip. We did that once and probably won't do it again. So, we searched for closer options and stumbled upon Crowders Mountain. We actually went there last fall for a walk around a cute lake but didn't end up doing any actual real hiking. 

Fast forward to this Summer: We did the Backside Trail which is pretty short (0.9 mi) but very steep. It took us about 45 mins up and then probably 20 minutes down. It was a strenuous hike so it's not for the faint of heart.     

Crowders Mountain

It's better to go early since the parking lot fills up and as the day goes on, the sun heats up too! 

Crowders Mountain

The view from the top is gorgeous, especially since there aren't many other tall obstructions in the way. On a clear day, you can see for 25 miles. 

Crowders Mountain

In order to take the photo below, I actually went to the edge and Jake was feeling a little nervous. After I came back, he was saying he couldn't believe I actually went out so far. What can I say? I'm conquering my fears, one hike at a time. 

Crowders Mountain

Heading back down the million stairs, as we started our descent... let's just say it's easier going down than up. 

Crowders Mountain

Have you ever hiked Crowders Mountain or any other hikes near/around Charlotte? The Charlotte Agenda posted a really great resource for any Charlottean's out there -- It's 22 hikes within 90 minutes of Charlotte. Enjoy! 

xoxo,

Friday, October 23, 2015

Friday Five | Vol. 3

Good Morning from Chicago, lovelies! 

It's been quite the hectic week for us, but all good things. Last week, I headed down to Miami for a work meeting, and then Jake came and we checked out the city over the weekend. This week, Jake traveled to Chicago for a conference and I arrived last night to explore the city with him. His conference was at a hotel near the airport so we could see the airport runway and watch planes land from our room. It reminded me of when I was a little girl when we moved to Hawaii from Michigan. We had to stay a night in California and we stayed right near LAX.  My brother and I just watched planes land for hours -- we were mesmerized. I just got really nostalgic. Does that ever happen to anyone? Just me? 


Now, onto the Friday Five: 

Have you seen this hilarious Activewear video? You have to watch it. You're welcome. 

I was reading the latest issue of Travel & Leisure magazine and came across this article about a  luxury travel company that plans trips and get this -- you don't know the destination until you arrive at the airport. They tell you what kind of clothes to pack but that's about it. Can you imagine? I kind of love the idea -- and then I saw the price tag -- from $18,500 per week, per traveler. I told Jake about it and decided that we should do our own version of this (i.e. I plan and he doesn't know and the other way around). Thoughts?

I'm in Chicago for the first time and we're going to Girl and the Goat for dinner tonight and I couldn't be more excited. I don't know if I've ever been more excited for a meal in my life. 

Do you use Kayak for planning your trips? I do and I'm obsessed with it. Once you set up your account, you just forward all of your travel confirms to a special email address and they automatically get added to your itinerary. I love being organized and I'm all about efficiency. 

Have you tried mobile ordering from your Starbucks app? I just did last week and it's amazing.  It's great if you order when you're a few minutes away and then you can literally just walk in and pick up your drink. 

Have an amazing weekend! 

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

On Location: The Hunger Games | District 12

Coincidentally, this is just in time for Halloween.... I know it's been awhile since the first Hunger Games movie came out, but I heard that part of the movie depicting District 12 was filmed near Charlotte.  One day this summer we decided to make a spontaneous trip. The drive was about an hour Northwest of Charlotte and it actually makes for a pretty good day trip. It's right near the town of Hickory which is a pretty cute place. We took the scenic route via Highway 321 and it was very pretty and very green. I recommend going that way if you are traveling from Charlotte. 

The location is called Henry River Mill Village. It's currently a ghost town {my first one!} but was built in the early 1900's and suffered several fires over the years.  It was a small mill town that manufactured fine cotton yarns. By the time it shut down in the 1960's, the mill had produced 12,000 spindles and fine yarn for creating lace. 

Hunger Games

Recognize the Bakery from the movie? It's probably the only thing I actually recognized. If I go back and re-watch it, I'm sure it would all make sense but I think the most scenic part is the bakery. 

Hunger Games

Legend is that this place is haunted. Doesn't it look the part? I would not want to be around these parts at night. But I'm also the person who never wanted to go graveyard hunting, etc. 

Hunger Games

It looks so calm and peaceful now. 

Hunger Games

The entire village is actually up for sale for a million bucks. What a steal, right? Well, there is no electricity and you have to keep the structures standing since they are on the register of National Historic Places. But, other than that... 

Hunger Games

Hunger Games

Aren't the broken windows eerie? 

Hunger Games

Hunger Games

We had such a fun time exploring this village and a few other people popped by while we were there. Technically, there are a bunch of no trespassing signs, so we probably weren't supposed to be there, but oh well. It was a fun adventure. 

Have you been? Do you want to visit? 

Travel Fully,


Friday, October 16, 2015

Friday Five | Vol. 2

Who's excited for the second installment of Friday Five?! I'm writing this post from Miami but you better believe that once Jake arrives later this evening, we're going to party it up. And by that I mean go to dinner and then probably come home and go straight to bed. It's one of the many perks of being in your thirties. Beauty sleep > drinking excessively all night.

Follow along on instagram @thevintagemodern and snapchat @vintage-modern. 


Have you read this article about a woman who quit her job to travel for a yearlong honeymoon? Wanderlust, anyone?

  
Do you wear a fitness tracker? I am obsessed with my Jawbone UP. My favorite part is the sleep stats. I should do a post on this. 


My super secret trick for charging my iPhone is setting it to airplane mode while charging. It charges up to 100% in 20-30 minutes max. Also, if I know I'm going to be out and about and I want to save "juice", I frequently turn it to airplane mode and it'll maintain the current charge until I turn it off airplane mode. 


Have you tried Blue Apron? I did a review post here if you missed it. 


I'm obsessed with these ear climber earrings. I ordered them a few weeks ago after my co-worker raved about them and now I cannot stop wearing them. 


xoxo,



Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Local Eats: Duck Donuts

Since relocating to Charlotte in 2013, we have been on the hunt for some amazing fresh donuts. Living in Seattle, there were tons of delicious donut options: Top Pot, Mighty-o, Daily Dozen at Pike Place... you get the idea.  

We tried Dunkin' Donuts. Not impressed. Krispy Kreme? Snooze. And then we sort of gave up. My co-worker told us about MJ's Donuts down South but we could never seem to make it there on time before they would sell out -- and they sell out pretty early.  We had also heard about Your Mom's Donuts but this was before they had a physical storefront -- and they are located in Matthews so it's a bit of a drive from the city.  Joe's Doughs are pretty good but their storefront has yet to open and the donuts are only available occasionally though their pop-up shops at The Daily Press.

So, what's a girl to do when she's craving freshly baked donuts? Jake and I once got so desperate that we drove all the way to another town -- Harrisburg to a place called Granny Mac's Bakeshop {they have since CLOSED}. They had red velvet donuts! They were tasty, but nothing too special. Plus, driving over 20 miles for donuts seemed like a little much to me. We do live in a big city, but until recently there have not been any good options for warm, fresh donuts. 

Until now, that is... 

Duck Donuts Charlotte

Enter Duck Donuts - a mere 7 minute drive from our apartment. They just opened a few months ago, but this could be dangerous. I was so excited to try their donuts that I got up early and went to pick up a few before work last Tuesday. I joked on Instagram that some people get up early to work out, while I get up early to eat donuts. How were they? Let's just say that I was VERY impressed!  

Their donuts are made to order and you can choose from a list of coating and topping choices. I made sure to take a copy home to study so I am prepared next time we are at the counter :) 

Duck Donuts Kenilworth Commons Charlotte

When the weekend came, I dragged Jake along with me so I we could try a few more flavors. 

Duck Donuts Charlotte

Fresh donuts, all ready for toppings!  

Duck Donuts

These ladies are in charge of putting the delicious toppings on the made to order donuts. 

Ducks Donuts

Our box-o-donuts. Left to Right, clockwise: Maple Bacon, Glazed with Coconut, Vanilla with Sprinkles and the Bare Donut. You read that right. Jake got a simple plain donut with no toppings. But he enjoyed it. So whatever floats your boat, I guess? 

Duck Donuts

If you are ever in Charlotte, you must check out this place. And no, this is not a sponsored post. I just love these donuts that much. The end.






P.S. I'm categorizing this post under 'design'. Because I don't have a Food category. And apparently all I've been blogging about lately is food. Oh well. 

Sunday, October 11, 2015

The Five Simple Rules I Follow Each and Every Time I Travel

As you probably know, I am a rule follower. I always drive the speed limit or maybe a bit over. Not 15 mph over like the rest of these crazy Charlotteans, but that's another story.  Once when I was younger, a cashier gave me $20 in change instead of $10 and when I realized it, I actually took the money back to get the correct amount of change. I'm serious, guys. It's bad. At least I can sleep at night though, right?

Anyway, in honor of my trip to Miami later this week {insert sun + margarita emojis}, I also have some basic rules I follow for every trip which I thought I would share with you all.  These tips basically started out as unwritten rules which changed and evolved as I traveled more. I truly believe that these tips are the formula for a successful trip.

Travel Tips
CLT > SEA: Mt. Rainier from 10,000 feet last Summer  
1. If travel is a priority to you, then always keep in mind that you will be back, you don't have to do EVERYTHING in one trip.   I struggle with this one a lot, but have finally embraced this attitude. For example, on our first trip to NYC, we tried to see the Brooklyn Bridge and Statue of Liberty but ran out of time. On our second time through, we made it to the Brooklyn Bridge and finally on our latest trip, we got to see the Statue of Liberty.  

2. No watching TV while traveling. It's a waste of time. Even in the hotel room.

3. When it comes to picking out restaurants, I make reservations on opentable ahead of time or at the very least browse restaurants on yelp and the key here is -- filter by 'most ratings' and/or 'highest rated'. I can't remember the last time I just popped into somewhere without looking it up on yelp first. It just doesn't happen.

4. Plan and schedule out each day -- and overschedule if possible. What I want to avoid is feeling like I don't know what to do next and then I end up wasting time. It's always easier to take things off the schedule as opposed to rushing to find stuff to do. I don't want to feel like I'm missing anything either.  I can be flexible if we don't get to do everything that we planned. 

5.  Stop, take photos and document everything. There are so many times that I have said to myself, oh I wish I stopped and took a photo of this or that. Now I specifically go at a slower pace and don't stress out when I take a few breaks to take photos of things I like.


Do you have any tips or rules that you follow when you travel? 


Friday, October 9, 2015

Friday Five | Vol. 1

I decided to start a new series on the blog where I do a weekly round up. I was actually inspired by Cupcakes and Cashmere's Five Things, but wanted to change it up a bit {hence the name Friday Five}, so here goes:



Have you seen the HBO documentary on Kurt Cobain yet? We watched it last weekend and it was riveting.


I might be living under a rock but I just learned how to use picmonkey. Thanks again Joey for the much needed tutorial. 


This old navy boyfriend windowpane flannel shirt just came in the mail today. I'm debating whether to keep the small or medium. #firstworldproblems, right?


I'm headed to Miami next week + weekend for work and some play. Would love to hear your recommendations. It'll be my first time!


Your Instagram addiction might actually have some health benefits. Read this


Happy weekend, lovelies! 




Thursday, October 8, 2015

Discover DITTO

Today is a very exciting day, friends! Where should I start? Well, for a long time I have been wanting to get a DSLR camera so that I could hone my photography skills and take better photos for the blog.

While I didn't buy one myself, my friend Joey just purchased one -- and get this, we will be taking photos for each other's blogs! How exciting is that? We set a tentative date for this weekend to do a "shoot" as I call it. So, fast forward to last night. I got home from my mani/pedi around 6:45 and noticed that it was the golden hour. I quickly grabbed the camera and asked begged Jake to take a few photos for me. He was exhausted since he woke up at 5 am {I don't blame him}! He asked "why do we need to go outside?" and tried to take a few photos inside the apartment. "Not the same" I said. He wanted to do a few other things and asked if it could wait. I said no -- we're losing daylight {in a very dramatic tone}.  He reluctantly agreed to take a couple pictures. We went outside and I did my usual poses and just as I was inspecting his work --it was pretty good, but not exactly what I was looking for -- my friend came home and offered to take a few photos with her new camera! Um... yes please! Lo and behold, the photos are below and they came out marvelous.  I have the feeling that this is the start of a great friendship!

ditto_karen_walker_number_one_1

ditto_karen_walker_number_one_2

Now -- what I  really wanted to share about today is a new company called DITTO that let's you swap out your shades every month for $24/month. You basically rent designer sunglasses. What a steal, right? I have been waiting to try these Karen Walker "Number One" shades for ever but they are pricey. This is the perfect opportunity to try those sunglasses you've been wanting for ever and if you don't like them, no hassle. Just pick out a new pair to swap out and once those arrive, you send back your old pair -- so that you are never left without sunglasses. I love his concept!

ditto_karen_walker_number_one_3

They also have state of the art technology which allows you to see a video of yourself {similar to snapchat} to try on various pairs of sunglasses. It's very cool and helps ease the process of picking sunglasses out online.

Up next for me: Either Karen Walker Super Duper Strength or Ray-Ban Sunglasses "Clubmaster"!

ditto_karen_walker_number_one_4

ditto_karen_walker_number_one_5

Click on the link below to try DITTO's Endless Eyewear for yourself -OR- let me know in the comments section if you have tried it yet!

Endless Eyewear™. On Rotation.




 

The Fine Print: Vintage Modern contains advertising and affiliate marketing links. This means that I may get commission on sales of the products that I link on the blog. As a dear reader of mine, I want you to know that if you follow a link and make a purchase from an affiliate site, then I will make a commission from that purchase. sponsors, brand collaborations and affiliates make this blog possible.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Sautéed Shrimp Sandwiches with Blue Apron

Lately, I've been super lazy about meal planning, grocery shopping and basically cooking in general. My co-worker told me about Blue Apron which is a meal delivery service that delivers all the pre-portioned ingredients {including meat} along with recipe cards. But you have to actually cook the meal. And the recipes are slightly involved -- they usually take me about an hour from start to finish and I gobble down my creation in about 4 minutes. It's even better if you have someone to help you cook and can divide up the steps into two. My co-worker sent me a link to try a week for free and I was hooked!

I recently re-discovered online grocery shopping which has been heaven sent.  Jake and I live literally eight-tenths of a mile away from a brand new Publix grocery store but there are times when I just cannot get my butt into the car and drive to the grocery store. Sure, I can peruse the aisles of Target for 2 hours... but that's another story for another post.

UP THIS WEEK: Sautéed Shrimp Sandwiches with Saffron Aioli and Celery Parmesan Salad. Recipe is here

Blue Apron Sautéed Shrimp Sandwiches

Our Blue Apron deliveries arrive on Wednesday evenings before 8 pm and they come with 3 meals with 2 servings each for $60. It boils down to $10 per person per meal and I think that's a score. Sometimes I go to Whole Foods and spend $25 just on fresh Salmon for one meal.  So far we have made 6 meals and the meat quality has always been super fresh and tasty. So I know they are using good ingredients and not skimping in that department.  

As a side note, you can always 'skip' a week if you don't like what the meal choices are or you'll be out of town.  We've skipped several weeks without a problem. And you can see what the meal choices are several weeks ahead of time so that you can decide if you want to skip or not. 

Bue Apron Meal Delivery Box

As you can see, there are fresh veggies, cheese, buns, and way down on the bottom, under the ice pack thingie, are the meats to ensure they stay cold and fresh throughout the shipping process. 

Blue Apron Box Contents

In the brown bags, they have what they label 'knick knacks' for each recipe which typically include spices, mayo, or whatever else is needed for the recipe. One thing I love is that everything is pre-measured so you never have to measure anything. 

Blue Apron Contents

Each box comes equipped with recipe cards with photos and step-by-step instructions for how to make each meal.

Blue Apron Recipe Cards

Below is the Celery Parmesan Salad. I don't usually like celery but this was a nice change up from your typical salad -- and I am not a huge salad fan either, but I really enjoyed this take on it. 

Blue Apron Celery Parmesan Salad

The sautéed shrimp and saffron aioli. Have you guys had saffron before? It's actually really good!

Blue Apron Sautéed Shrimp

The finished product: Sautéed Shrimp Sandwiches with Saffron Aioli and Celery Parmesan Salad. YUM! This was actually my favorite recipe so far. We are traveling a lot this month {13 days out of 31 --eek} so we are skipping the meals until the end of the month. But I cannot wait to make the Brie and Pear Grilled Cheese Sandwiches! My mouth is already watering! 

Blue Apron Sautéed Shrimp Sandwiches

Things I learned:

It's super easy to make aioli. The main ingredient is mayo.

Every recipe I've made so far has used garlic and fresh lemon juice.  So, basically those are staples that should really be in {almost} everything that is make from scratch.

Nothing beats fresh veggies. For the first recipe, I literally had to cut fresh corn off the cobb and I normally would never have done that -- I would've just bought frozen or canned corn. But it was so easy to do. I'm sure I will try it again!

Zesting a lemon or lime is actually not that hard.

Have you tried Blue Apron or another meal delivery service? If so, let me know your experience in the comments section below. 

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