Well friends and fellow alcohol enthusiasts, I have discovered my beverage of the summer and it even has its own theme song.
Click here if you don’t have Spotify (and then get Spotify).
The only thing more important than vodka and coconut everything in the summer is looking decent in a swimsuit, and at just 100(ish) calories per drink, this low-cal vodka cocktail (LCVC) provides ALL OF THAT. Add in refreshing lime and you have the tropics in a tumbler.
I’ve been whipping up this simple sauce since Hangout Fest with Svedka Colada (my obsession) and even taste tested it on a few discerning dudes (it passed with flying colors). But I was recently at a bar that had coconut rum instead of vodka, so I gave that a whirl and
chugged loved it just the same! Rum gals, rejoice!
Here’s how to make it:
Mix 1 part coconut vodka or light rum to 2 parts soda (or half and half if you’re heavy-handed like me), then add a teaspoon (or a good squirt) of lime juice. I die for Nellie & Joe’s Key West lime juice and you can find it in most grocery stores. Add fresh lime to garnish and VOILA: Put the Lime in the Coconut COMPLETE! (You can always use fresh-squeezed lime juice if you want the bicep workout, but I just prefer bottled for this cocktail.)
Now drink ‘em both up.
When I told people I was co-hosting a baby shower, they either A) Laughed, B) Held back laughter, or C) Just looked confused. Well guess what, you guys, some of my besties are knocked up, and while I know my talents lie in bachelorette, sex toy, and holiday party planning, I can still contribute to a baby bash like a perfectly normal, domestic(ish) female. I mean, HELLO—I am on Pinterest.
Our mom-to-be has a serious (like, chronic) sweet tooth, so we did a dessert theme. I took this opportunity to order two dozen of the city’s finest cupcakes from Smallcakes Cupcakery (you may know them from The View, The Food Network’s Cupcake Wars, etc.). I have to admit I had selfish reasons for doing this because I have been craving cupcakes every since Sean and Lindsay (wedding dress chick who says “amazing” 458 times an episode) ate/smushed them in each other’s faces on The Bachelor a few weeks ago. Cake pops, whoopie pies, bacon-topped brownies, and other trendy pastries: I love you all, but there is nothing quite like a cupcake. The cupcake is the little black dress of desserts–it’s never going out of style.
There’s a plethora of flavors in that mix, but Smallcakes specialities include: Red Velvet, Caramel Crunch (with the pretzels on top), Cookies-n-Cream, Pink Vanilla, Birthday Cupcake (sprinkles!), Hot Fudge Sundae (with the cherry on top, duh), and so many more.
But what’s a party without (boozy) beverages!? I wanted to do a sherbet punch of some kind so I read a few recipes online, but then said, “F it, I’ll go to the grocery store and figure it out when I get there.” And it turned out magically:
To make the punch in that gigantic bowl, I combined:
2 half gallon jugs of Juicy Juice Apple Raspberry
2 2-liter bottles of Ginger Ale (not diet, sorry)
Then I dropped in 2 1-quart tubs of sherbet (from Kroger) –one orange and one rainbow (I let them thaw a little bit before dropping them in, but they were still frozen blocks, which was perfect because they fizzed enough, but still kept the punch cold.)
And of course, top with champagne for the boozy version. You can always put the champagne in (1.5 bottles for every bottle of juice/ginger ale) when you make it, but it’s nice to have it “on the side” for the preggos at the party.
This recipe made a TON, so I recommended halving it unless you have a large crowd, and of course you can mix up the juice and sherbet flavors, but I think raspberry and orange pair well together.
And because I know you girls like pretty pics, here are few more from the baby shower. Don’t worry–Witty + Pretty isn’t turning into Cupcakes & Cashmere. This is a rare occurrence. And for more baby shower ideas…refer to Pinterest.
Homemade cake balls:
Chocolate-covered marshmallow pops (courtesy of No Big Whoop Bakery):
I need another cupcake.
So the Super Bowl is this Sunday (duh). If you must know, I’m Team Ravens. My hometown team are the Eagles and we all know their chance of making it into the playoffs was about as good as Manti Te’o's girlfriend singing the national anthem. I’m also a Falcons fan by default and we were SO CLOSE (the loss was disheartening, for realz). So my THIRD fave team is the Ravens because my brother played football with Flacco at University of Delaware, which means I am basically BFF with him. But if I’m being completely honest, I’m really just rooting for Beyonce…
…to not lip sync during halftime.
But JUST as important as the game itself is the snack spread. Since I will probably be hungover on Sunday (Kate’s and my 3rd annual Pure Romance party is the night before), the possibility of me logging hours (or even 20 minutes) in the kitchen is just, well, nonexistent. So I’ve compiled five of the easiest and yummiest things in the snack universe. They require minimal ingredients, even less effort, NO BAKING (read: no fire alarms going off), and everyone will love them. Just be prepared: The Martha Stewart chick who spent three hours slaving over dips, breading, and crock pots is going to be effing piiiiissed.
(I’ll be real with you guys. I’m literally drooling on myself as I’m writing this. Not a good look.)
1. Nutella S’mores
Name one person who doesn’t like s’mores. That’s right. You can’t.
To make: Generously spread Marshmallow Fluff/creme and Nutella onto graham cracker squares. Add peanut butter for extra amazing.
2. Gas Station Sampler
I created this enticing dish when I was en route (and late) to a holiday party and the only place in sight was (you guessed it) a BP.
To make: I chose Combos (a must), Takis, and Munchies, but you can choose any of the convenience store’s finest snacks and assemble like you see above.
3. Big Screen Surprise
When I go to the movies, all I want to do is get popcorn and M&Ms and mix that ish together for a salty sweet explosion in my mouth. Ok, that sounded bad.
To make: Get popcorn. Get M&Ms. Mix them together in a bowl and serve. Obviously I would use peanut butter M&Ms (do you see a theme here?).
4. Pigskin Plate
If you failed Home Ec but kicked ass in art class, this dish is for you. All is takes is a little arranging, which could actually be fun. Just put on some tunes (Jock Jams Volume 4 if you have it) and get creative.
To make: You’ll need cheese, crackers, pepperoni, and more cheese. Click HERE if that’s not enough direction.
You could put pieces of gum on toothpicks and it would look like you made an effort (that’s actually not a bad idea…).
To make: Go with cheese, olives, and meat or fruit and marshmallows (canned mandarin oranges = no cutting = right up the lazy cook’s alley) or whatever small food items you think would suffice on a stick.
And my personal favorite…
Reese’s Hors d’oeuvres (as seen on the holiday commercial)
And speaking of commercials…now I’m really pumped for Sunday.
Wishing you and yours a happy Super Bowl and here’s hoping you contribute a snack that’s a winner (GO FLACCO!).
Another guest blogger, whaaaa?! The Witty + Pretty party just keeps getting better, and in the words of the renowned poet Pitbull, “Don’t Stop the Party” (ie. keep reading). I met Lauren virtually through a friend (thanks David!) and guest blogged on her site, Strictly Nutritious, last week (about booze, shocker). While her awesome blog is about living a healthy lifestyle, her one weakness is queso (Lauren: “Anyone who knows me knows that I’m the Queso Queen. I will literally steal, kill, and destroy for some Mexican food (well not really, but close). Get out of my way.”) She’s obsessed with spin class and EOS lip balm (my absolute fave), so obvi we’re soulmates, and when it comes to singing in the car, she prefers “anything from the 90′s. I love a good Christina or Britney throw-back, and I’m not above busting out the lyrics to a boy band song, especially “Tearin’ Up My Heart.” Oh…and if we’re dancing, it’s definitely gotta be to Salt-N-Pepa’s “Push It.”
AMEN. So now that you have a total girl crush on Ms. Nutritious, see what she has to say (and the project she attempted for our reading pleasure):
I vividly remember the day my mother finally gave me permission to wear makeup. I was in sixth grade at the time, and I had already spent a few painful months in the locker room after P.E. class watching my more fortunate classmates applying shiny lip gloss and powdering their noses. Now, after months of pleading my case like a miniature law school student, my mother agreed to a little lip gloss. A small victory, but a victory nonetheless!
In addition to desiring makeup for its ability to transform me from awkward middle school student to stunning teenage dream (or so I thought), I just generally wanted to try it because it looked fun. I was the artistic type, so the idea of painting my face and transforming my look really got me jazzed!
Beach beauty? Check! 1950′s pin-up girl? Check! Sultry sex kitten? Check! Check!
I’ve been cruising along for years, enjoying the perks of traditional beauty products, but it seems my party bus has hit a bumpy road lately, as I’ve been reading more and more about beauty products that aren’t so great for your skin and health (to put it gently). Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep website has all the dirt (literally), but don’t go there and start clicking around unless you’re ready. Ignorance can certainly be bliss.
So…what’s a girl to do then? Make her own products! In an effort to take action and transform my own beauty arsenal, I attempted to make some products last weekend (“attempted” being the key word). To start, I chose something easy (so as not to get discouraged right off the bat) and something my long-forsaken legs could really use (some love and attention). What better than a Brown Sugar & Lemon Scrub to exfoliate, moisturize, and revitalize!
I’m happy to report that no one was injured in this science experiment AND it took all of five minutes to complete. My legs have been smothered in love and I’m ready to show them to the world (if only it wasn’t 12 degrees in New York City today).
4. Mix well and store in a mini recycled jar for use in the shower. Your legs (and skin all over!) will be silky smooth.
I can now say that making your own beauty products is empowering — if only because you know EXACTLY what you’re putting on your skin and into your body. It’s a way to send a message to the cosmetics industry that you care about the ingredients of their products, and let’s be honest, your own brand of cosmetics makes a great gift for your friends. Look at you, gettin’ all ‘Martha Stewart’ up in tha’ kitchen!
But if you can’t (or don’t want to) take the heat (I don’t blame you), there are other great natural brands that you can buy! Check out this comprehensive list before heading to the makeup counter.
Remember, knowledge is power, ladies. Put your money where your mouth is and pamper yourself the natural way!
Lauren, you had me at “five minutes to complete” and “silky smooth legs” (y’all know I’m all about some smooth skin). Plus, this looks way easier to prepare than an actual meal, so I’m thinking I’ll whip this up with glass of wine in hand this weekend, then have an excuse for an extra long shower. Not that I need one.
And don’t forget, read more about Lauren’s nutritious livin’ HERE.
Tomorrow is December 1. I mean…can I get a “WTF?!” It seemed like only yesterday I was laying on the beach with a margarita getting tan and now I’m just drinking (large quantities of) red wine and getting paler by the second. But whatever. I do love the holiday season and there are so many ways to embrace and celebrate this magicalorious time of year. One being red wine (obviously), but below are some others things that bring joy to the world…
1. Drink eggnog. You COULD make it yourself, but that ish is complicated (here’s a recipe if you want to attempt). Luckily, there are plenty of tasty eggnogs on the market and Trader Joe’s is one of the best (check out HuffPo’s ‘nog review for the best and worst). So pick up one of those cartons, add bourbon using my standard half-and-half pour rule, and enjoy your Christmas in a cup!
2. Get ice princess eyes. Light, shimmery shadows brighten up your peepers as it is, but now’s the time to really shine. Stila’s jewel eye shadow (Opal is pictured; $20) has a smooth texture and gives a brilliant sparkle effect. Apply all over your lids and/or in the inner corners of your eyes to illuminate them even more.
3. Wear sequins (duh). If there is one month of the year when it’s appropriate to wear sequins from head to toe daily, it’s December. No one knows whether or not you have a holiday party every night of the week. H&M has some serious stunners for cheap (the pictured dress is $25!) as does Forever 21 and Fab’rik. Shine bright like a diamond.
4. Listen to the best holiday playlist ever. Okay, not to toot my own horn (HONK, HONK), but I created a Holiday Pop playlist on Spotify and I think you’re going to like it. Have you ever heard Cee Lo croon “Silent Night?” What about Justin Bieber’s and Busta Rhymes’ “Drummer Boy” duet? And of course, you’ll hear old faves like Mariah, Boyz II Men, and…wait for it…N’Sync. It’s the most wonderful time of the year.
(Use those tiny arrows on either side of the play stream to change songs.)
5. Holiday shop with me tomorrow! You knew this was coming. Start December off on the right foot…and by right foot, I mean with the right cocktail in hand (hot toddies), best shopping (designer clothes at up to 75% off), free makeup touchups (courtesy of Pla Beauty), and a festive holiday atmosphere at the Les Nouvelles Holiday Bazaar. Click HERE for all the details and I hope to see your smiling faces there. Because All I Want for Christmas Is You.