Spring

Ready for the Weekend

Some weeks are just harder than others. This was a hard one. From starting the week off with learning that I would need further treatment with radioactive iodine to breaking the heel on my favorite pair of Vince Camuto shoes right when I got to the office (and was already running 30 minutes late, mind you), the only thing that made this week tolerable was that it felt like summer outside. That small consolation kept me going as I struggled to hold it all together through the work day and found solace each afternoon in resuming my daily walks around the neighborhood.

While each day seemed to bring a new challenge, I reminded myself that this too shall pass. I hope you all had a good week, enjoyed the summer-like weather, and are as excited as I am to kick off the weekend!

Here’s a round up from my week:

Anthropologie

{My new mantra for 2017}

Flowers2

{Beautiful flowers at my local Starbucks}

Donuts

{Donuts make everything better}

Spring

{Even the birds are loving this warm weather}

Spring Sunset

{My first sunset capture of the season}

Spring at Old Westbury Gardens

Old Westbury Gardens 9

This spring, I want to get out and explore all of the gems that are in my own backyard on Long Island. And that’s just what I did over the weekend on a beautiful Sunday when a friend suggested visiting Old Westbury Gardens.

I’m not sure how it is that I have lived on Long Island this long and never visited this site. These majestic grounds are a must-see should you find yourself in Old Westbury in Nassau County, New York (about 45 minutes east of New York City).

For my history aficionados who may be interested in the backstory, the mansion was completed in 1906 by George A. Crawley for John S. Phipps and his family. The impressive mansion sits on 200 lush acres that include a swimming pool, ponds, lakes, and various gardens that contain an array of floral specimen.

I was in awe of the various colors I encountered while strolling through one of the gardens. Everything was so vibrant and stood out against the deep blue sky…well, you get the picture. If not, just take a look at the photos below to get a better idea of this tranquil setting.

Old Westbury Gardens 8

Old Westbury Gardens 5

Old Westbury Gardens 10

Old Westbury Gardens 3

Old Westbury Gardens 11

Old Westbury Gardens 1

Old Westbury Gardens 4

Old Westbury Gardens 7

Old Westbury Gardens 15

If you find yourself heading to Old Westbury Gardens in the near future, be sure to check the website to see what’s in bloom during your visit. And if you have time, schedule a tour so you can learn more about this amazing place!

The Weekend Recap: Spring Edition

I hope you all had a wonderful weekend and a happy Easter (and you aren’t suffering the lingering effects of a sugar coma). The weather on Easter Sunday reached a record high (around 75 degrees) and I was happily able to break out a lacy yellow sundress. Here’s hoping the rest of the week is just as nice, and that I don’t devour all of my Easter candy in the next 24 hours.

Starbucks

{Iced coffee season is here}

Spring

{Beautiful Blooms}

Chocolate

{I think the caption sums it up}

Glow Fish

{These fish got their glow on}

Lindt Gold Bunny

{This Easter bunny is out and about}

Spring Is Here

Now…let’s hope it stays around. It looks like we are in luck, judging by the weather reports for the week, with temps reaching the high 50’s and 60’s almost every day. After last week’s rain, I am elated by this development.

The weekend didn’t disappoint, either. Sunday was too perfect a day to waste, so I took full advantage of it. I went to breakfast with a friend, found my way to a Farmer’s Market in Port Jefferson, NY (where I caught up with two of my favorite people—Linda and Madeline from Chocology), and even took a few minutes to relax and listen to the sound of the water lapping against the shore.

If the weekend is any indication, I’d say we’re in for a good week…at least weather wise.

Here’s a quick recap:

Dessert

{Irresistible treats at a work event in New York City}

Motto

{My new motto courtesy of @thetaylorhouse}

Gym Selfie

{Gym Selfie}

Port Jefferson, NY

{A perfect spring day in Port Jefferson}

Chocology Unlimited

{A sweet gift from Chocology. Check out my Instagram to see what’s inside!}

Thoughts on the Weekend

Ah, another weekend is upon us. Like the end of every week, I can’t wait until Friday at 5 pm. There is something about having two days where I don’t have to set an alarm, make my lunch, and rush out the door that excites me. If you are like me and are always running 15 minutes late in the morning, you need to check out this article about the seven habits of punctual women (I’ve only adopted two of them, so I have some work to do).

For me, this weekend is all about getting back into shape (we’ll see how my back feels about that!). I plan to return to kickboxing for the first time in almost a month. After that, I will probably be unable to do much of anything…except relax.

Here’s hoping you have a restful weekend!

Sunrise

{Rise and Shine!}

Spring

{More signs of spring}

Can't Adult Today

{Target, you know me so well}

Flowers

{A perfect flower}

The Friday Five

Goodbye, winter. Hello, spring (even if it does feel like winter is still lingering in the shadows). After suffering with back pain for the last week, I sure am glad to have two days off and no plans. Here’s to spending the next 48 hours away from my computer, somewhat off social media, and most likely on the couch with a heating pad, binge-watching shows from the week. It sounds like an ideal weekend, if you ask me.

La Boulange

{Decisions…decisions}

Long Island Spring

{Hello, spring!}

Spring Starbucks Cups

{My latest obsession: the spring cups from Starbucks}

Fireplace

{A cozy dinner by the fire}

Chocolate Mousse Cake

{The most #instaworthy cake there ever was}

Nessie’s Picks for Spring

Nessie's Picks for Spring

At the first sign of spring, you can usually find me swapping out my heavy winter layers in favor of lighter looks. So when I saw a crocus pop up this week, I had to remind myself that we are just entering March (and that my transition would be premature).

In putting together a round-up of items for spring that I am currently coveting, I thought it would be fun to share some that I already own (and love), others that I have been dying to try, and ones that will be purchased (just as soon as payday rolls around).

So, let’s jump right in.

A must for spring: Few things get me as excited as a suede moto jacket. And this one from Banana Republic ticks all the boxes. It’s the perfect color and fabric for the upcoming season, so you won’t regret buying this fun transitional piece.

Will be buying ASAP: I have yet to find the perfect pair of lace-up flats. Despite numerous trips to DSW and Nordstrom Rack, I haven’t had much luck with this style. But that all changed when I spotted these Gap beauties. The blue jean color was just what I have been looking for—and obviously, I love that they come in suede. Let’s hope that they are as comfy as they are chic when I go to try them on.

Need to try: Now that I am making a hardcore effort to be healthy and eat better, using cleaner beauty products is a high priority. I have heard and read a lot of good reviews about the RMS products, and now that I am in the market for a new highlighter, it seems like the perfect time to give the brand a try.

Wish list: Fortunately, I don’t have to spend a hefty sum on this wish list item, thanks to Target. Mossimo has an almost identical version of these beauties for a fraction of the price.

Can’t resist: We all have items that we don’t need but would love to have, right? These tassel earrings from Baublebar is just that for me. How cute would they look with a nice sundress or chambray top?

Buy these: If this is the only piece of advice that you ever take from me, then buy these pants…now. The Sloan-fit pants from Banana Republic are a must-have for us petites. I have never found a pair of pants to be so comfortable and flattering that I go back and buy three more pairs…the same day. Oh, and did I mention that they don’t need to be hemmed? If you were to ask anyone in my office, they would probably describe these babies as my office uniform.

What are you swooning over for spring?

Relaxing and Recapping

We got lucky with a few rather warm days in May recently. Of course, I’ve taken full advantage of the nice weather, debuted my white jeans (as if I needed an excuse), and sipped on cool iced coffees. If the weather keeps up like this, it will feel like summer before we know it!

Here’s a round-up of my favorite recent snaps:

Flowers

{Hello, beauties!}

Starbucks Iced Coffee

{My summer go-to from Starbucks}

Sunset

{Not a bad sunset to see on your drive home}

Jimmy Choo Glasses

{How fab are these Jimmy Choo glasses?}

Chocolate Chip Pancakes at IHOP

{Started off the week with chocolate chip pancakes from IHOP}

Follow me on Instagram and Snapchat (username: livinginsteil) to keep up with all of my musings!

The Insta Index

This past weekend made me want to countdown the days until the official start of summer. But by Monday, it felt like fall had returned (and I had to pull out an additional layer to run errands). Here’s hoping that this wacky weather realizes that it is mid-May, and summer should be on its way soon.

In the meantime, here’s a quick Instagram round-up:

Kendra Scott Earrings

{Seeing blue with these Kendra Scott beauties}

May Sunset

{A Fiery Sunset}

Nutella Milkshake

{Nutella milkshake from Go Burger}

Countdown to summer

{Summer Countdown}

Barn Day

{Let me in…I know you have treats in there!}

Follow me on Instagram and Snapchat (username: livinginsteil) to keep up with all of my musings!

The May Agenda

The May Agenda

In an effort to make sure that I get out of the house at reasonable intervals (#bloggerlife) and enjoy the nice spring days ahead, I’ve set an ambitious agenda this month. As much as I love making my way to New York City (because there are always fun things to do there!), I’ve decided to stay close to home and enjoy all that Long Island has to offer.

Try: If you follow me on Instagram, you know that I think brunch is all day, e-v-e-r-y-d-a-y. Luckily, Long Island does not disappoint in the brunch category. Now that the weather is nicer, a good weekly Sunday brunch is in order. And I’m on the hunt to find some new places to share with you all.

Read: I’m still looking for some good book recommendations (#helpagirlout). I’ve never been into fiction — favoring more of the empowerment genre — but I think I’m ready to give it another chance. Have you read any good books lately?

Go: There is no shortage of things to do on Long Island. Trips to the East End and Fire Island are always on my itinerary come spring and summer. But recently, I realized that there are a whole bunch of museums and attractions that I haven’t been to since I was a kid. I would love to visit Sagamore Hill, the Vanderbilt Museum, and the Bayard Cutting Arboretum. While I’m sure I won’t be able to cross all of these things off my agenda this month, it’s good to have goals. Right?

Do: Emily over at Cupcakes and Cashmere has inspired me to visit a farmers’ market and try to make a brunch with fresh ingredients. She shared the recipes on her blog for lemon ricotta pancakes and blueberry buttermilk crumb cakes that looked beyond delicious. Fortunately, Long Island has plenty of farmers’ markets this time of year, so I plan on heading to one this coming weekend.

See: I’m not much of a movie-goer, nor do I care for the superhero genre, but the new Captain America: Civil War movie has piqued my interest. It looks like it has just the right amount of action to keep me entertained!

What’s on your agenda this month?