Wednesday, November 27, 2013

What's In My Bag - Thanksgiving Edition!

It's almost Thanksgiving!!!! 

This evening, we are hopping on a plane to New York (what else is new?) to join the rest of my family back East in celebrating Turkey Day. Now, I just checked the weather forecast and it's supposed to SNOW on Thursday. I haven't had a white Thanksgiving in... my whole life? Ever? So I'm a little nervous and a LOT excited :) Better pack my warmest clothes!

Here's what I'll be bringing along in my bag:


A couple of years ago Bailey gave me two gorgeous Helmut Lang crocheted sweaters, one white, one black, and I love wearing them every chance I get. The high-low hem is my favorite part!

Last year I bought a pair of AMAZING black suede booties from Zara with a rhinestoned, studded heel and I literally wear them every chance I get - with tights and dresses, with skinny jeans and cardigans. They are the best - and these Jessica Simpson booties are VERY similar, and on sale to boot!

MAYYYY have been mindlessly browsing in Macy's over the weekend when I came across these polka-dot leggings on MAJOR sale. Thought they were cute and gave them a whirl - for less than $20, why not? Can't even imagine how cute they'll be with black Toms and a casual black sweater.

Okay, I confess - as soon as I spotted these amazing Alice & Olivia flats online a few days ago, I fell hard... and ordered them ON THE SPOT. The sensible loafer shape says "business" and the rainbow confetti says "PARTY!" They are so sparkly and awesome and I actually had them shipped to my aunt's house so that they will be waiting for me when I land in New York! #obsessed

My favorite clutch in my favorite pattern. Perfect for a trip because it packs flat - and let's face it, every outfit looks better with a little leopard accessory, don't you agree?

This tortoiseshell/rhinestone number from Baublebar is a great necklace to pack on most vacations - it goes with nearly everything! (I also have a feeling my grandmother, lover of everything tortoiseshell, is going to try to steal it.)

I rarely go anywhere without at least one Free People T-shirt packed in my bag. They're so comfortable and perfectly worn-in, and the colors are always spot-on. I don't own this shirt in teal YET but I'll likely be adding it to my collection - so far I have charcoal, white, black, and pink!

Considering it's been hovering in the 70s in Los Angeles, I haven't exactly felt the need to start using "autumn colors" on my nails quite yet - I've been sticking with good old hot pink. That being said, I'm using this trip to the frozen tundra as an excuse to break out one of my very favorite neutral colors - Essie's Chinchilly. The perfect grey!

After I posted this coat on my Hanukkah wish list last week, it went on crazy sale and I couldn't help myself - I bought it! It came just in time for our trip, too! Cannot wait to wear it. It is so freaking cute, I am obsessed. Bring on the snow!

The world's best liquid liner. I own it in black and brown and don't go anywhere without it. If you're scared of liquid eyeliner, this one is literally foolproof and you need it in your life right now.

Now that my bag's all packed, I'm looking forward to four days filled with family time, delicious meals, some awesome shopping, and maybe a Broadway show?! NYC is so sparkly and beautiful this time of year.... even in the snow!

Wherever you go, whatever you do on Thanksgiving, I hope you have a wonderful holiday! 

Monday, November 25, 2013

The BEST Thanksgiving Sides

Let's face it - the best part about Thanksgiving dinner is not the turkey. The SIDES are where it's at, ya'll. I could take the bird or leave it (unless it's smoked, which is a different story #YUMZ), but I LOVE me some sides!

My aunt in New York is hosting Thanksgiving, like usual, and has already come up with a menu that sounds phenomenal. We don't get into NY until very late on Wednesday night, so most of the cooking will already be done, which means I won't be able to help cook as much as I'd like... but I thought it would be fun to do a little research ahead of time, in the name of deliciousness :) I'd love to eat ANY of these on Thanksgiving!

Butternut Squash Soup with Maple Roasted Chickpeas
A couple of years ago, my mom made Thanksgiving dinner - and kicked things off in the BEST possible way with soup. And not just ANY soup... a delicious, silky, creamy butternut squash soup. Hers actually had caramelized onions and butternut squash chunks on top, which was awesome, but I'm intrigued by this recipe - which comes with maple roasted chickpeas on top. SOLD.

I MEAN. These mashed potatoes have butter AND cream cheese, so they're basically a heart attack on a plate, but goddamn if they don't look delicious. 

I actually made stuffing for Thanksgiving using this recipe last year, so I can vouch for how delicious it was! I subbed chicken apple sausage - my family's favorite - for the spicy Italian sausage and it was awesome. 

I love cauliflower - but not more than Ram does. He LOVES it. I can picture his face now... cauliflower AND parmesan AND breadcrumbs? That boy would be in heaven.

The Shiksa's Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Walnuts & Pomegranate Molasses
I love recipes that elevate a simple vegetable in a really special way. This recipe calls for roasting brussels sprouts til they are crispy and brown, then tossing them with walnuts, pomegranate seeds, and a delicious vinaigrette. A platter of these on your table would look unbelievable - and taste even better!

But of course, there's one classic I will not mess with. No need for any special cranberry sauce fancied up with nuts or pecans or oranges - NOTHING beats the good old fashioned kind straight from the can! 

When Thanksgiving rolls around next year, it'll be right after our wedding - we'll be married for one month and two days, to be specific :) and I'D like to host our first married Thanksgiving!  I have a feeling some of these delicious sides will be on our menu... but you know, I have a full year to think about it :)

Friday, November 22, 2013

First Five on Friday!

It's finally Friday!!!

I read a few blogs where the bloggers post the five things that made them smile throughout the week - the Five on Friday, if you will. I love seeing the fun little things that make people happy and so I thought it was finally time I joined in on the fun! Here's my Five on Friday!

We have got a VERY fun weekend ahead of us - tonight, we're going back to see our favorite comedy show for the very first time since we got engaged on stage! I'm sure Ram is looking forward to seeing the show without having all that nervous energy inside him :) Afterwards, we are going to dinner with a bunch of friends at Pizzeria Mozza - always phenomenal. And on Saturday night, we are going to FINALLY see Catching Fire with some friends... I have been waiting for this movie since the moment I walked out of The Hunger Games in March of last year! #KATNISS4EVA

Have I mentioned that we are going away for Thanksgiving? Surprise surprise, we will be heading to New York for the holiday and I am very excited to see my family (especially my sister), maybe catch a Broadway show, potentially pick out bridesmaid dresses, and of course, eat some turkey and hit up Black Friday sales!

I randomly picked up this hair serum in CVS a few weeks ago - I don't know what came over me, I am usually very hesitant when it comes to trying new products, but I started using it immediately, and actually really like it! After I get out of the shower, I spray detangler throughout my hair and comb it through, and follow it with a little glug of the serum, which I finger-comb through my ends. I think it's made my ends stronger already!

It's actually raining in LA! I am probably one of the only ones in this city who actually likes when it's cold and drizzly out... and all the better when it rains over the weekend, and I can stay in bed or lay on the couch and be all cozy. Bring on the cute coats and warm socks and adorable umbrellas!

Our Save-The-Dates are scheduled to arrive any minute and I CANNOT WAIT to see them! We are planning on sending them out in the beginning of January, so it'll be a while until I can reveal them on the blog, but I will definitely post all about them when they've arrived in homes - no spoiling the surprise until then! I can tell you one thing that's making me happy... the envelopes are HOT PINK! :)

So that's my first Five on Friday! Pretty fun :) maybe it'll become a regular thing around here? We shall see. Hope you all enjoy your weekends! 

Monday, November 18, 2013

The 2013 JMRS Hanukkah Wish List

Hello friends! I apologize for my absence last week - I had a HUGE event at work this past Saturday night that took up a LOT of time and energy, but I am happy to say it went very well! So now we can get back to our regularly scheduled programming of talking about wedding nonsense and future purchases and recipes I have tried and enjoyed :)

You longtime readers will know that every year, right around this time I release a very important document... the Jordan Marisa Rose Hanukkah List! This year, the Festival of Lights is CRAZY EARLY - it starts on Thanksgiving which means I'm already behind :) Without it, how else will my beloved friends and family know what specific sparkly items I have been coveting?

Enough chatter. The document speaks for itself :) I give to you, the 2013 JMRS Hanukkah Wish List!


One of my favorite artists of all time is Jennifer Sanchez - I love her work. I already own two out of three of her limited-edition prints for 20x200... this last one would complete my collection!

This is the big one, folks. I've been anxiously awaiting the new iPhone 5s and I'm finally eligible for an upgrade! Fingers crossed for the gold one :) 32gb, please, so I have lots of room for my photos and videos :)

I first saw this AMAZING coat on my friend Nicolette's blog and have been stalking the website for it to come out for months. It's from TALBOT'S, of all places - can you believe it?! I am obsessed with the colorblocking. Let's ignore the fact that as I write this, it's mid-November and 80 degrees in LA...

My love of ballet flats is well-known - I have dozens and dozens of pairs in every pattern and color. These gorgeous rhinestoned shoe-clips by Lulu Frost for J.Crew would jazz any pair up! 

Something about these gorgeous brightly colored picture frames from Furbish Studio just really speaks to me. Wouldn't they look so pretty with black & white photos inside?

There's something nice about getting an experience as a gift, don't you think? Rami and I have taken two of these cooking classes before (one Asian cooking class, one Southern cuisine class) at EATZ Cooking School and I have LOVED them!

God, I love a statement necklace. This pretty Baublebar one comes in a million colors, but I think I'm partial to this pale grey - it'll go with so many different outfits!

Stripes and gold - two of my favorite things! A bag this size is perfect for so many things - as a carry-on  for the plane, for fruits and veggies at the farmers market, for magazines and sunscreen on the beach... love it. Plus, it's monogrammable (is that even a word?), although I probably shouldn't be monogramming things with my old initials anymore :)

I like to get a new pair of Ugg slippers every December - you could say it's like a little holiday tradition of mine - and I wear them all year round, no matter the weather. This year I have my eye on the ones with the leopard trim, obviously!

Eight nights of Hanukkah, nine suggestions of awesome things - it's like a birthday, one for good luck! Now that the list is out, I'm getting excited for some menorah lighting and dreidel spinning and latke eating. This type of year is so special and I can't wait to start celebrating!

Want to catch up on past lists? 200920102011, and 2012 wishlists, right this way :)

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Soup's On

GUYS. I made the most delicious soup the other day. On my way back from Chicago I bought the latest issue of Martha Stewart Living to read on the plane and it was one of the featured recipes. It sounded so good I ripped it out and made it the next day!

This is Martha's Chickpea Soup with Parsley and Parmesan, and it was delicious - filling, but not heavy. I'm kicking myself for not doubling the recipe - I would have happily eaten the leftovers all week! 

I posted that picture on Instagram, and got lots of requests for the recipe. So here it is below - my changes listed in pink, obviously :)

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling (I didn't use any for drizzling)
5 cloves garlic, very thinly sliced (about 2 tablespoons)
Pinch of red-pepper flakes
Pinch of oregano
Pinch of garlic powder
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
2 cans (about 15 ounces each) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
4 cups chicken broth
1 cup water
Coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, for serving (I left this out)
Finely shredded Parmesan cheese, for serving
Toasts or bread, for serving (I didn't serve it with any bread)
Juice from half of a lemon 

Heat oil in a medium pot over medium heat. Add garlic and red-pepper flakes; season with salt and pepper. Cook until oil is infused and garlic is just beginning to color (do not let brown), 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer garlic chips to a plate.

Add chickpeas to oil in pot, increase heat to medium-high, and cook until heated through and creamy, about 5 minutes. Smash some of the chickpeas with a potato masher or the back of a wooden spoon. Add broth and water and lemon juice; simmer until thickened slightly, about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Season with garlic powder and oregano. 

Divide soup among 4 bowls. Top with parsley, Parmesan, and garlic chips. Drizzle with oil and serve immediately with toasts.

Mmmmm. Seriously tasty, and it couldn't have been easier to make! If you go for it, let me know how you liked it! 

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

First Annual Sister-Moon!

We are back from the First Annual Sister-Moon and let me tell you friends, it was a big success! 

Bailey J and I met up in Chicago late Thursday night and had a grand ol' time just hanging out with each other all weekend. It had been so long since the two of us got to spend time with each other, one on one. This was the perfect opportunity for some quality sista sista time - both our gentlemen friends were out of time so we figured why not take advantage of a free weekend?


We picked a good weekend to go - it was perfect autumn weather - cold but not freezing, no snow, no crazy wind, and it only rained for one hour total the whole weekend.  We stayed at the Omni Hotel - it was nice, not amazing, but the location right on Michigan Avenue couldn't be beat. Plus, the view from our window was ZARA IN OUR FACE. Bailey was PSYCHED.


We spent our first day in Chicago visiting Little Goat Diner (which was awesome and I spied Chef Steph in the kitchen!), Jayson Home, and BHLDN, Anthropologie's wedding shop! Obviously we had to pose in front of the sparkly dresses.


That night we had a PHENOMENAL dinner. One of Bailey's friends is a bartender at RPM (yes, Guiliana and Bill's restaurant!) and got us a primetime same-day reservation. Yes, we owe her big time. She steered us towards some major deliciousness on the menu, too: we had grilled octopus, garlic truffle bread, meatballs, tuna/avocado bruschetta, short rib parpardelle, spicy crab linguini... it was phenomenal. Our favorite meal of the trip by far!



We finished the evening with a comedy show at the famous Second City Theater. Can you believe my sister has never seen a comedy show in her entire life?! She liked it. I liked it, but didn't love it.... made me miss my UCB stomping grounds :) (I know that sentence is going to make my fiance FREAK OUT WITH HAPPINESS.)

We spent our second day in Chicago just walking around the city - we did some shopping on Michigan Avenue and worked up an appetite in time for some Chicago deep-dish pizza!


Everyone recommended Lou Malnati's so that's where we went. To me it tasted like pizza lasagna! I couldn't eat more than one piece.


We took lots of cute pictures - I want to frame this one! Here we are at dinner Saturday night at Siena Tavern - another Top Chef restaurant! This one was owned by Fabio :) It was also yummy, but nowhere near as delicious as RPM. Seriously... just go there. #nomnomnom


On our last day, we woke up early and walked through the city to see the bean. Bailey's nickname is Bean, so she was kind of in heaven... kicking up her heels and posing.


Of course I could not resist the opportunity to do the same :)



Chicago is BEAUTIFUL. I could not get enough of the fall colors. Look at these gorgeous trees!


I'm now a big, big fan of the Windy City. I seriously kept saying over and over, "I could live here! I could live here!" There was something about the midwestern friendliness coupled with the feeling of being in a big city, but still having room to breathe/personal space, that I just LOVED. I can't wait to go back. Thanks for a fabulous trip, Chicago!