- See more at: http://blogtimenow.com/blogging/automatically-redirect-blogger-blog-another-blog-website/#sthash.TPW7o39F.dpuf Lishy Lishy: 2012

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Holiday Cake Pops

When I saw that Starbucks had a cake pop gift kit for sale, I knew that my sister would be thrilled.  I'm convinced that not many others make special trips to Starbucks just for the cake pops. With a massive amount of Christmas entertaining over with, our kitchen was ready for another new adventure. 

'Tis the Season

This year was a Christmas of entertaining. The annual Christmas Eve bash was accompanied by the traditional Christmas Day gathering for the very first time.  Family, giving, Greek food, Italian food, and the Mele family cake and coffee combo, what could be better?!
Grand Entrance

Two trees, one roof

Sarris Candy makes everything feel festive
Tree Trimmings

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Pasta Lacqua

My mom absolutely loved 'Pasta Lacqua' when she first tried it at Angelo's Italian Restaurant in Washington, PA.  She was thrilled to see the recipe in the local newspaper, and the dish has been a Johns family staple ever since. With chicken broth, fresh tomatoes, and the slightest hint of white wine, this dish is spectacular, and is one of my favorites to cook.


Sunday, December 2, 2012

Breakfast Quinoa

Depending on its preparation, I would say that Quinoa is an acquired taste.  I like it as a side dish for dinner, but a lot of people are turned off by the unique taste and texture. With this breakfast quinoa, however, I really don't think there is anything not to love about this hot cereal lookalike! The brown sugar, cinnamon and blueberries are great additions.  I found the recipe at http://www.marthastewart.com/314453/breakfast-quinoa, but I did tweak it a little.  I used almond milk and I have also used coconut milk in the past.  If using the coconut milk, I would recommend less brown sugar.  I also advise NOT covering it.  It only took a few boiling over incidents for me to just skip that step...

  • 2 cups whole or low-fat milk, plus more for serving
  • 1 cup quinoa, rinsed
  • 3 tablespoons light-brown sugar, plus more for serving
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon, plus more for serving
  • 1 cup (1/2 pint) fresh blueberries, plus more for serving


  1. Bring milk to a boil in a small saucepan. Add quinoa, and return to a boil. Reduce heat to low, and simmer, covered, until three-quarters of the milk has been absorbed, about 15 minutes.
  2. Stir in sugar and cinnamon. Cook, covered, until almost all the milk has been absorbed, about 8 minutes. Stir in blueberries, and cook for 30 seconds. Serve with additional milk, sugar, cinnamon, and blueberries.

Countdown to Lugano - 39 Days

With 39 days left until I leave for Lugano, Switzerland to start my 4 month study abroad experience, it is officially crunch time.

- Kate Spade Passport cover - CHECK
- Calvin Klein Parka - CHECK
- Comfy flats for city exploring - CHECK
- Vintage Australian leather cross body bag straight from my moms closet- CHECK
- Updated Camera aka the Nikon P510 - CHECK
- Flight departing Pittsburgh and arriving in DC on January 10th and Returning on April 26th - CHECK
- Round-trip flight from DC to Zurich, Switzerland - CHECK

- Hostel reservations to experience Carnavale in Venice - Work in Progress
 - School textbooks (can't forget about the studying aspect of studying abroad) - Work in Progress
 - Hiking backpack that will double as a carry-on  - Work in Progress
- City Maps - Work in Progress
- Universal travel adapter - Work in Progress

- A prepared, yet spontaneous and adventurous state of mind - To be determined.....
- A fluency in Italian  - Not holding my breath...

On my radar: KSNY Idiom Pendants

Why do I love Kate Spade? Because the brand is witty and playful, yet strong, and these idiom pendants are no exception. My favorite idioms of the bunch? Creme De La Creme and Hello Sunshine. 

Director Duties

After toying with the concept for a while, Tim Austin, videographer-extraordinaire, was able to bring my idea   for the 9400+ Stories promo video to life. I love his choice of background music, and the video was a great intro for our "Common Grounds" event that had a 9400+ Stories theme.

November Adventures

I started off the month with a wonderful trip to the University of Virginia in Charlottesville with the club tennis team.  UVA may not have the best reputation to Tech students, but I was immediately impressed when I noticed that an Anthropologie was located just minutes from campus.  It was a really cool town, with surprisingly great shopping and restaurants.  My personal favorites were Little John's and Bodo's Bagels. 

Once back in Pittsburgh for Thanksgiving break, GC and I ventured to our favorite courts for some tennis.  I couldn't help but snap a picture of the gorgeous sunset we enjoyed on our way to the car.
We also ventured downtown for light-up night.  Looks beautiful from this picture, but dealing with the crowds was not so serene.  

My sister's soccer team traveled to Hershey, PA once again to compete in the PIAA state finals.  I enjoyed the surroundings while nervously watching her in goal. They won, and she is now a sophomore, 2-time state champ.  

GC and I had the grand idea to make something sweet and special for our one year.  We bought ingredients to make brownie cake pops without realizing we were in need of eggs.  We rolled with it, and learned the hard way to never make brownies without eggs and to always spray the pan before baking.  Yes, they look awesome in this picture, but believe me when I say that they could have broken glass.  

The day after Thanksgiving was the day that it became socially acceptable for me to break out my favorite Christmas mug.  

After returning to Blacksburg, I helped to pull off an event, hosted by the Officer for Diversity and Inclusion, titled "Common Grounds." My favorite part of setting up? Creating this cute cupcake display. 

S'mores coffee creamer. Need I say more?

Monday, November 5, 2012

Favorite Morning Pick-Me-Up

Yes, this coffee tastes just as good as it sounds. Who knew Tjmaxx carried such amazing gourmet coffee?

Homemade Hot Cocoa

On a cold and rainy day in Pittsburgh, there is nothing better than some warm hot cocoa.  I have always used the run of the mill Swiss Miss instant packs of cocoa in the past, but a few weeks ago, I was forced to improvise when I couldn't find any in the pantry.

 I combined two tablespoons of Hershey's cocoa powder and two tablespoons of sugar with warm milk and topped with marshmallows.  I will never go back to packaged cocoa again after tasting the warm, chocolaty, goodness that I created!

It tasted so good, that I was halfway finished before I could even bring myself to take a picture.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

On My Radar...

BaubleBar teamed up with my favorite fashion blogger, Blair Eadie (http://atlantic-pacific.blogspot.com/), to create a cool and colorful jewelry collection. The full collection can be found at http://baublebar.com/index.php/baublebar-plus-view-all/atlantic-pacific.html, but here are some of my favorite pieces: 

My Life According to Instagram

Mill Mountain is the cutest coffee shop around. I love the rustic decor, over sized mugs, and pumpkin lattes.

GC showed up at my doorstep on Friday with these gorgeous flowers.  I love the pretty pop of color that they add to my desktop!

I'm also a huge fan of Starbucks. Actually, I am just a fan of coffee in general. Nothing cures rainy day blues like curling up in a comfy chair with some pumpkin spice.  

You know, just a brief creative brainstorming session

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

2012 Emmy's Top Picks

 I may not have been thrilled with the awards results (no Emmy's for Mad Men?!), but The Emmy's red carpet was filled with gorgeous sparkle, structure, and color, color, color!

Here are my picks for best dressed:

1. Ginnifer Goodwin in Monique Lhuillier
2. Clare Danes in Lanvin
3. Cat Deeley in Tadashi Shoji
4. Allison Williams in Oscar De La Renta
5. Julie Bowen in Monique Lhuillier

images via justjared and instyle

Monday, September 24, 2012

Chocolate and PB

This was not the first time GC and I attempted to chocolate-coat bananas, but we switched it up this time and added some peanut butter into the mix.  Don't call us pros just yet, hilarity ensued (as always). 

NY Fashion Week-nesses

Last week, fashion's finest hit NYC for fashion week. After shamelessly looking through album upon album of runway looks, I chose my five favorites.  I couldn't take my eyes off of these graphic prints and sparkly stunners. I have to say, Jenny Packham's show was my absolute favorite.

From Left: Jenny Packham, Oscar De La Renta, Alice + Olivia, Jenny Packham, Erin Fetherson

Friday, September 14, 2012

It's in the Details

I consider myself to be very detail-oriented when it comes to certain aspects of my life. Anything school-related? Details matter. Anything art related? Details really matter. Anything work related? Details matter the most. Anything food related? Well, details aren't that important. I'm not one to strictly follow a recipe.  

When it comes to home decor, or in my case, duplex decor, I knew details were required to make my space unique.

Transform an old piece
Boring glass vase no more.  By painting white Martha Stewart acrylic craft paint on the INSIDE of this old glass vase, I was able to give it a whole new look.  I debated on color for so long before deciding on white, and I also washed my hands for so long before getting all of the paint I slopped off of them.  

 Stack, Stack, Stack
I love playing with height by adding books, boxes, or in this case, a box that looks like a book, under frames  or even cupcakes (see above). I found this union-jack gem at Tjmaxx in Christiansburg. 

Color Craze
There is no such thing as too much color. These Vera Bradley magazine holders keep my school work organized and add personality to my work space!

As a tribute to my favorite art exhibit of all time, Rivane Neuenschwander's "I Wish Your Wish" (http://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/22/arts/design/22neuen.html?pagewanted=all), I tied one of the ribbons from the exhibit onto my desk lamp. 

I am really into ombre lately.  I love seeing a color transform before my eyes and imagining the possibilities...

Color in the Kitchen
Yes, we love coffee! How could you tell?!?

 Blair made the coolest glass ever! Right now we're using it as a silverware holder but it could also double as a candle holder.  Oh the possibilities...

My Nunny would be proud! I love showing off her colorful biscotti jar in our kitchen.  The pop of yellow is perfect.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012


Yes, I am that girl who decorates her planner...no shame. 


Ralph Waldo Emerson

Kayak Pittsburgh!

One of my favorite summer adventures was definitely kayaking with GC.  We rented a tandem kayak through Kayak Pittsburgh (located under the Roberto Clemente Bridge) and rowed down to the point and back. Well, to be honest, I did very little rowing, more sight-seeing and picture-taking. 

Counselor Crafting

As the Programs and Activities Coordinator for the Iceoplex at Southpointe's Summer Activities Camp, I did a lot of behind the scenes work on scheduling and social media.  My greatest focus was on the camp's Pinterest page.  Yes, I love Pinterest for my own personal enjoyment, but I genuinely think Pinterest is the best social media outlet for the camp.  I found tons of creative crafts and snacks on the site and we were able to incorporate some of them every day at camp.  I also discovered that Pinterest is a great way to build brand identity.  Not only did a lot of ideas come from the site, but boards were also arranged by week so parents could easily find recipes and crafts from camp!

Here are some of my favorite ideas from the camp's Pinterest Page (https://pinterest.com/iceoplexsac/)
sponge water balls paper plate shark craft!   Cat & the Hat TreatGalaxy Playdough
Halloween!Dessert sushi! Oreo Owl Cupcakes #owl #cupcakes #oreo button caterpillar "Acorn" snack  Swimming Teddy Grahams!