Our Trip To The ATL

Atlanta.  Home of Coca Cola, home of the Braves, home of Outkast.  And temporary home of a really exciting art exhibit -- Frida & Diego: Passion, Politics, and Painting at the High Museum.  I don't know if it was evident from Halloween this year when I dressed as Frida Kahlo, but she is my all-time favorite.  Like, obsessive favorite.

It just so happened that Living Social was running a great deal recently for a 4-star hotel that just happens to be across the street (serendipity, I say!) from the museum.  I asked my sister if she'd be up for a little road trip and we made our way to Atlanta this past Thursday.

The hotel was The Artmore Hotel.  It used to be an apartment complex ... a beautiful one at that!

We enjoyed a cocktail from the hotel bar and took it outside to the courtyard since the weather was so beautiful.  Champagne and St. Germain -- our favorite!

The hotel was great and we had a loft-style room.  Downstairs was a living area and a kitchenette, and upstairs was the bedroom and bathroom.

For dinner that night we went to a place I'd been wanting to visit for a long time, Antico Pizza.  This place is BYOB so I put a bottle of red in my purse and we hailed a cab there.  You place your order at a counter, grab a seat at a communal table, and right about then, your pizza is served.  It is amazing how quickly the orders are ready here! 

The pizza we chose had prosciutto, mushrooms, artichokes, and buffalo mozzarella.  It was every bit wonderful -- if not more -- than I expected. 

The next morning we walked to the museum and I was positively giddy!

The exhibit housed 120+ pieces from Frida Kahlo, her husband Diego Rivera, and photographs of them -- the largest joint exhibit of these two artists to exist.

Laura is such a good sister, she threw caution to the wind and told me that she'd take a photo of me with my very favorite piece of art.  There was a no photography rule and we saw several people getting talked to for taking photos.  This painting, La Columna Rota, is my very favorite piece of Frida Kahlo's and I just can't wrap my head around the fact that I have a photograph with it.

I can't believe that I was able to be in the presence of her paintings and see the individual brush strokes ... that is just an indescribable feeling.  It was definitely a weekend to remember!


Smoked Salmon Pizza

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What a great weekend it was!  Our Sunday night dinner was the icing on the cake.  This is a total copycat recipe from Trio, a fantastic restaurant in Greenville, SC.  A restaurant that I frequented maybe a little too much in college.  A restaurant that describes the, um, softness and roundness of my face after my freshman year.

Last night I used naan to make individual pizzas for us and I think I'll always choose this method -- it is the most similar crust to the brick oven crust that you get at Trio.

Smoked Salmon Pizza
Naan bread (available in my grocery store's bread section; Trader Joes has great naan too)
Smoked salmon bits
Granny Smith apple, sliced thinly
Brie cheese wedge
Red onion, diced
Capers, drained

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Drizzle a little olive oil on each piece of naan and use a pastry brush to spread it around.  Top each crust with some slices of brie, the apple wedges, the smoked salmon bits.  Sprinkle on the diced red onion and capers.  Top with a few more slices of brie.  Bake for approximately 20 minutes or until the cheese is bubbly.  Let cool slightly before serving.

I truly can't describe how unique the flavors are of this pizza.  It's not your traditional pepperoni pie, but if you are an adventurous eater, I bet you'll love it!

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Where The Players Play

Sending you all a big
Heyyyyyy, Ya'lllllllll
from the Peach State!

I'm here with my sister Laura and we have some fun adventures ahead of us!  Back Monday ... catch ya then!

Pssssssst!  Tory Burch 25% OFF
Friends & Fans Sale going on N-O-W through Monday! 
Use coupon code TBSPRING to get your discount on their website


Summer Skincare 101 ::: Guest Post

I was so honored when sweet Darci, blogger extraordinaire of The Good Life, asked me to guest post in her Hello Sunshine! series.  Focusing on all things summer, this is such a fun series to read.  And today I posted about Summer Skincare ... and how easy it is to find yourself lecturing youngins' on the hazards of tanning.

I present to you ... Exhibit A. 

What a difference eight years makes!  #paleisthenewtan

Between yesterday's Candy Crush admission and that horrid photo above, I'm really putting it all out there for you!  By the way, the comments yesterday ... they LITERALLY had me laughing out loud. 

Thanks again Darci for the invitation to join this series ... to read my dish on Summer Skincare 101, click here!


This Is So Embarrassing (A Story About Me)

I have to tell this story on myself.  And it's so mortifying.

(deep breath ... here we go)

I killed my car battery yesterday because of my Candy Crush addiction.

(okay, that wasn't SO bad)

Candy Crush ... the game where you try to match up similar candies to beat the level and progress to the next one ... the game that has taken over my life.  Specifically level 35.  It's straight up killing me.

Who ever would have thought that such a silly game could be so dang addictive.

What happened, you ask?  On my lunch break at work, I decided to go run an errand, and before popping into the store, I thought, heyyyy -- great time to whip out the iPad and play a quick five games to see if I can beat this horrid level. 

Yesterday was warm, but I was running low on gas, so I just turned the car on enough to keep the AC running but not the engine.

Bad move, people.

After losing those five games, I noticed my AC wasn't as cool as it once was, so I went to crank up the car to get a little bit of cool air.  Um, wouldn't crank.  Just click-click-click-click-click-click-click-click.  I muttered a few select words and knew exactly what I'd just done.

If you follow me on Instagram (@alizadventures) then you saw a photo of me with my new Triple A pal, Jose.  Want to talk about impeccable timing?  We'd just renewed our AAA membership last month after letting it lapse for maybe half a year. 

Jose was great.  He told me I had beautiful eyes, and I asked him for a deeper discount on a new car battery.  He said no.

And $117 later, I was all set to go back to work with my brand new, non-discounted car battery.

Obviously the battery was probably on the weak side to begin with, but my Candy Crushing definitely drove the stake in its heart.

I shouldn't be surprised that I'm all over this game, given the fact that I spent 87% of my freshman year at Furman playing Snood.

Once I even missed class because I lost time playing Snood.
I wish it weren't true.

Missing a class at Furman, a teeny school, isn't like missing a class at a "normal" university.  We didn't have classes of 300.  My typical class was 12-30 students.  Sometimes less.  Missing class was the equivalent of skipping school in high school -- your teachers always noticed, your fellow students were afraid you were on your deathbed, and you BETTER have a good excuse upon your return.

My middle sister once diagnosed me with Addictive Gaming Personality and I took offense because of how horribly geeky it sounded.  But after yesterday ... hmm.

Please tell me I'm not the only one?!

The winner has been chosen for the
$50 Bellevue Newport giveaway ...
congratulations to the very lucky lady! 
Click here to see if it was you!


Go Ahead, Splurge A Little: Shrimp + White Bean Enchiladas

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Sunday nights in our home call for a little splurge.  Something carby, something cheesy, something just a smidge bit indulgent.  Enchiladas often win out, obviously.

But another thing about a Sunday night is that I don't want to be stressed in the kitchen -- any lengthy or complicated recipe is a no-go.  The thing I love about these enchiladas is that there's no real recipe ... just eyeball the ingredients, tweak to your taste, and as my Nana would say, "You know it's done when it looks ready."

Basic Enchilada Instructions
  • Spray 9x13 with Pam.
  • Fill tortillas with what you love.
  • Wrap 'em up and lay them in a row.
  • Top with enchilada sauce and cheese.
  • Bake at 350* and you know it's done when it looks ready.
Here's how I used these basic instructions to put together our Shrimp and White Bean Enchiladas.

Sautee shrimp in a little butter or olive oil and add to center of tortillas.

Sautee half of a white onion and add to the tortillas.

Rinse a can of white beans in a colander until they don't create bubbles any more and add beans to the tortillas.

Add a little shredded cheese to each tortilla - this helps the inner ingredients to bind together.

Roll up and place seam-side-down on a 9x13 that you have sprayed with Pam.

While I do love enchiladas with red sauce, I've been on a green sauce kick recently.  To top my enchiladas, I used diced green chiles and green enchilada sauce.  Just pour both right on top of the rolled tortillas, no need to even mix them.

We love black olives, so I added those on top.

Top with a little shredded cheese.  I used some from a bag of Mexican blend but then used some freshly-grated pepperjack on top.  Freshly grated cheese just melts so well and tastes better.

Bake at 350 degrees for about 20-25 minutes ... you'll know when it's done because the cheese will be nice and melty and just slightly golden brown.

As a side, we are so in love with refried black beans.  I shredded some cheese to top that and also added some sliced avocado.  A lime wedge is the final thing you need to zest this dinner right up!

I did mention that it was indulgent, right?!

The best thing about this easy dinner is that you can use the basic instructions above and just add in whatever you love.  Craving beef?  You can sub out the shrimp and white beans for brisket and black beans, and then top with red sauce.  That would be heavenly.  Or, want to go vegetarian?  Fill the tortillas with refried beans, sauteed red peppers, and goat cheese.

What are some of your favorite enchilada fillings?


PS: Today is the LAST day to enter the Bellevue Newport giveaway for a $50 shop credit.  Shop your heart out with their cute preppy and monogrammed gifts.  Everyone is loving their monogrammed necklace!  Enter here for your chance to win!


So Very Excited {Europa Or Bust}

We're doing it, we're really really really doing it!

Ian and I have spoken for a long time about doing a Europe vacation, and doing it RIGHT.  And I'm so over-the-moon excited to say that these plans are in the works.

This is truly my dream come true.  I feel like the luckiest girl, spending my weekends and weeknights meticulously researching and planning every lovely detail of this trip. 

A few times I've actually burst into tears of joy at the computer because I simply can't believe that this is actually happening.


Paris, Bern, Florence, Rome, Sorrento.  I'm SO incredibly ready fo fall in love with these places.
Now ... time to turn for you for advice of how to pack, what to see, where to shop, and most importantly -- what to eat! 
Europe suggestions for a first-timer ... ready, set, GO!


Friday Four

Last night I went to Supper Club -- absolutely love those girls!  We had great food, lots of wine, and we had an Arbonne rep come out and pamper us with mud masks, detox foot soaks, and makeup.  Tons of fun, and I came rolling into the house at 10:30 last night.  Whoa, nelly.  I'm usually asleep by that time! 

So with that to preface today's post, you'll understand why this sleepy girl is going with a little dose of random today.

Gold Leaf Terracotta Pots
This idea comes from one of my favorite home blogs - The Hunted Interior.  This idea for gold leaf terracotta pots is insane.  These need to make an appearance at my home.

The Pioneer Woman's Crash Potatoes
So, we pretty much never cook potatoes, but once I heard about this recipe I just had to try it.  We are so in love with this as a weekend treat.  I use purple potatoes which is just lovely with those sea salt crystals on top. 

Weekly Workouts
I've been doing my best to increase my weekly workouts.  I have a gym that is in walking distance -- even though I always drove to it, I just had my little "aha!" moment where I realized that this was pretty silly.  I track the walk on Map My Run (free app - awesome) and it adds on more than a mile to my workout.  I wear a pedometer, so that's a huge benefit ... more than 2,000 steps added.

Martha Does It Again
These coconut thumbprint cookies with salted caramel need to make an appearance at my house.  Like, now.  I have a feeling I'll be whipping up a batch on Sunday.

Cheers to the weekend!  Ta-ta for now.
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