Monday, June 30, 2014

We Be All Night

Wow. Okay. That happened.

If you follow me on any social media you know that I looove Beyoncé. So imagine my reaction when two months ago one of my best friends Mary texted me that she was coming to Cincinnati on her On The Run tour. We begged and begged our moms, and they eventually said yes. And the countdown ensued.

The day came and neither Mary nor I could concentrate on anything the whole day. By the time she came to pick me up, we were both holding back screams of excitement. We hit the road for Cincinnati, listening to her music and making references all the way there.

Here's a little peek at our outfits (that we'd both planned out for weeks) to the concert.

On me: The Limited Shirt, Old Navy ShortsMacy's Shoes, Francesca's Earrings (similar)

I of course had to wear my black and pink for Beyoncé, and can we talk about these earrings? I'm borrowing them from my sister and she'll be lucky to get them back. They're adorable and perfect for Queen Bey.

After going through parking and getting our tickets, we were finally in Great American Ballpark. And you guys, there was a rainbow. Seriously?! We knew this night would be perfect.

Thanks to our cousin Chris, our seats were absolutely perfect. Not the floor (that madness was a little too much for us) but the first ground level in the eighth row. What.

Around 9:20, it finally began. And this picture about summarizes the whole concert for me.

Yeah. My face the majority of the concert. We ended up having an amazing time. Both Beyoncé and Jay-Z were so on and such good performers. They sang everything you wanted to hear, and the costumes, lighting, set, everything was flawless. I wish my pictures of the concert itself were a little better but I'll share a few.

She's real. Like what. Her voice and her dance moves and everything was so spot on and, as many screechy videos I rematch or pictures I save, I can't relive that moment of being there. I was so happy to share this with Mary and I will never forget it. One final picture, my favorite from the night, was when Jay told everyone in the crowd to "get a light up, whatever you got, a phone whatever, let's light this place up," while singing Forever Young with his wife. That moment of happiness and realness is one I can never forget.

-xoxo clb

Monday, June 23, 2014

Voice Recital OOTD

Hey guys! As a lot of you know, one of my biggest passions besides fashion (unintentional rhymes, what can I say?) is the arts, specifically theatre and singing. I take private voice lessons and we have a studio recital once a year. It's great to show what we work on all year to our friends and family while also getting to hear our friends sing. French arias aside, I love getting to dress up for it, and today I'm sharing my outfit with you.

Old Navy Sunglasses // Macy's Pearls

My mom pointed out that I looked very Jackie O, so I looked up "jackie o pink dress" only to find this.

Yeah. Just a little similar.

Back to the outfit itself. This is one dress I absolutely love and wear all the time. It can be worn so many different ways, but I love it with simple nude pumps and my favorite pearls. I curled my hair day of with my Hot Tools curling wand and pinned it back, seeing as I have an awful tendency to mess with it during performances. 

I also loved getting to see my other friends who were singing that day! My mini-me Savannah did such a good job at her first recital (not to mention her Lilly) and I was so proud. I was happy to see one of my good friends Emilie who I hadn't seen in forever and whose brother was singing that day.

I felt it necessary to add my pre-recital car selfie because why not?

That's all for today's outfit! It's a super versatile ensemble that could be switched up many different ways for different looks. It was perfect for the occasion and, while reminiscent of one of my biggest inspirations from the 1960's, is modern and classic. 

-xoxo clb

Sunday, June 22, 2014

National Wear Your Lilly Day

Goodness gracious do I love Lilly Pulitzer. The story, the prints, the agendas, the vibe of it all. I can name any print you show me and I even use my agenda in the summer. Up until a few weeks ago I owned no Lilly, except for my vintage skirt that is. It was a costume piece for a recent show I was in, and knowing my love for Lilly, wardrobe let me keep it! A week or two ago, I went to the Lilly retailer here in Lex and got my first Lilly Pulitzer dress, and it's perfect. Today I'm going to show you two outfits with these pieces in honor of National Wear Your Lilly Day.

First my vintage skirt. I have been dying to wear this for the longest time, and now that summer is here I can! The name of the print, unfortunately, I was unable to find, but the yellow and green combined with the floral screams summer. I love maxi skirts and the bright colors and lace on this one make it perfect, not to mention it has pockets. Pairing it  with a plain white chiffon button-up keep it simple on top and draws to the skirt. The vintage Lilly lace is so cute and I know I'll be bringing back this vintage favorite all summer long.

And in with the new! This dress in Ring The Bellboy is so cute and perfect for many occasions. I wore it for the first time on Father's Day and didn't want to take it off afterwards. The halter tie is so cute left hanging or tied in a pretty little bow. I paired it with my Jack Rogers and my classic white-toned pearls for a more casual, almost garden-party feel. I love the silhouette of this dress and I can't wait to wear it again.

Happy summer everyone! Lexington is heating up and I'm gonna go take a dip in the pool to cool off. Use the #NationalWearYourLillyDay and #SummerInLilly to show off your best looks today and all summer.

-xoxo clb

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Brownie in a Mug Recipe

Hey y'all! Happy almost-summer to all of you; it's only three days away. Today I'm doing something I never thought I'd be doing on this blog, but I thought it was perfect for the early summer when many people are still working or even (bless your heart) still in school. I may not have gotten the baking gene in the family, however, little miss Avery did. This child has seen every single episode of Cake Boss at least twice. You think I'm joking. She loves to make a cake or cupcakes for any special event we have as a family: birthdays, holidays, sporting events, you name it. Whenever I watch her, we always make something, and most of the time it's in a mug. Sounds crazy but it's so great. Today I'm going to be showing you how we make brownies in mugs. Let's dive in.

We found this recipe on Pinterest and have made it many times. It's a super simple recipe, and the best part? It takes three minutes and cooks in the microwave. This easy treat is perfect for those late nights when you're craving something sweet and quick.

Avery and I both made these in our favorite mugs. I used my Newsies on Broadway "Seize the Day" mug and she used her my owl mug. These are so yummy and easy to make. I always want more. Check out the recipe below.

Brownie in a Mug

-1/4 Cup of Sugar
-1/4 Cup of Flour
-2 tablespoons of cocoa powder
-Pinch of salt
-2 tablespoons of olive oil
-3 tablespoons of water

Combine all dry ingredients in your mug and mix. Add oil and water and mix until consistent. Pop your mug in the microwave for 1:40. Take it out, it'll be hot, and let it cool.

I cannot stress enough the most important step. Please, I beg of you. Please top it with ice cream. You will not regret it.

Here's to summer and many late-night mug creations

-xoxo clb

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Dad's Pretty Cool, Too

Happy Father's Day! Just as I did with my momma, I wanted to do a post dedicated solely to my dad, because honestly my dad is amazing.

He works for a company that requires him to travel all around the country, and he's rarely home. While it's hard on us, he makes such an amazing effort to keep in contact with us. He texts both my mom and me checking in on us, asking about tests and how my friends are and how dance was. We all cherish Friday nights when he's home and we all go out to dinner.

My dad is probably one of my biggest support systems. He wants my dreams for me just as much as I do. When I was seven or eight, when I had first discovered performing, my dad told me that when I was thirteen, he would take me wherever I wanted. At that age I said New York City, and gave the same answer for the next six years. When the day came, Dad took me to what would be my dream city the rest of my life. He took me to my first Broadway show and I fell in love. And everyday, he reminds me of that little girl and how big her dreams were. I strive everyday to be the girl thirteen-year-old me wanted to be.

On that trip to NYC, 2011

Everyone needs that one person in their life that pushes them to be the best they can be, and that's my dad. Now, don't get me wrong, my mom is great too. But my dad is always there (even if he's not there) to motivate me about school, dance, anything. My dad is the one who questions not just what the destination is, but the steps along the way, and he does everything in his power to help me reach those steps.

Dad always tells me about all my inherited "curses" from him, and while they may be bad things in some forms, they have helped me along the way. I'm stubborn like my dad, but it helps me fight for what I want. I'm a good arguer like him, but it comes in handy when there's something I truly believe in. I am so much like him in scary ways and I thank my stars for that almost daily.

I could write an essay on how my dad inspires me, but we don't have time for that. He works so hard, both at work and elsewhere, and motivates me to do the same. This is the man who, at a job interview, said he could be the top seller in a year and a year later was. That's the kind of drive I want. He fights hard too, through injuries, through troubles, through losses, through my teenage mood swings. He's strong, inside and out, and I want to be like that.

{Like this photo on Instagram}

I know in my Mother's Day post I talked about how both Mother's and Father's Day are kind of brushed aside, but I think this is even more so for Father's Day. We get a card and a tie for our dads and grandfathers and move on. Do something more for your dad this year (unless your tie is killer, then by all means). Happy Father's Day, Dad. Here's to many more years of late night fire pits on the patio and in-depth analyses of grunge music. I love you, you rock.

-xoxo clb

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Recital Week Outfits and Recap

Hey guys! So, as I've said before, competitive dance takes up the majority of my life. The 2013-14 season has been my seventh competitive season and I love it. During early June every year, we have our annual recital at the historic Lexington Opera House. It's such a beautiful venue and I love performing there. It's tradition for all of us to dress up for recital nights, so I'll show you my outfits and other mayhem from our 2013-14 recital.

Opening Night

Ah I love opening nights! Everyone is so excited to finally present what they've worked hard on all year, to show friends and family just what we've got. This is by far the night we dress up the most and we have a blast with it. I totally forgot I even owned this dress, so I was so happy to wear it. Classic nude shoes were the way to go. Also the background of these pictures looks pretty sketchy, but fret not, it's just the lobby of the Opera House stage door.

Day 2

Pay no attention to the blonde in the mirror

The morning of our second show I woke up to these lovely blooms. The white roses (my second favorite only to Osiria roses) from my dad and the mixed bouquet from my grandparents. I absolutely love having flowers in my room and these are beautiful.

I tried to combat second-show-slump and went a little more casual for the show. This ombré strapless dress from American Eagle was so comfy and perfect for tonight. I paired it with my Jacks and was good to go. Little miss Savannah, one of my "biggest fans" and practically another little sister to me killed it in classic Lilly and flats. Monday was a great night dance-wise and we were officially halfway there.

Day 3

If you follow me on Instagram, you may have noticed that my studio's colors are black and gold. On our third day of shows I decided to pay homage to that in this LBD from The Limited and a gold glitter belt, not to mention the necessary Jacks for my post-show painful feet.

Struggle...                                                                 And pose

One of my favorite parts of shows is when all my friends come visit. Whether it's been a week or a year since I've seen them, it's always a joy when people come out and support. This year my friend William who I haven't seen in ages. came out to visit (below). But of course I love spending quality time with my DESOD family, like my best friend Aaron (above).

Closing Night

I'm not crying that's just stage smoke in my eyes. Closing is always emotional as we say goodbye to all our seniors. One of my biggest role models, Lexi, is leaving, and while she may only be six miles away at UK I'm really going to miss her.

*wipes tear* Okay, moving on. I stopped in Old Navy today to exchange a dress and left with this beauty, which I knew immediately I had to show off tonight. This linen strapless floral dress is so cute and can be dressed up or down. I paired it with my nude heels for a classic, easy look.

My "queen" Sloan. I can't imagine doing a show without her.

Ah I love visitors!

Lexi again. 

After closing night for the last six years we have gone to Applebee's until the wee hours of the morning. Unfortunately, our Applebee's closed, so a few of us with sparklers in tow headed to one dancer's house and ate, talked, and took in some much needed R&R.

This ends my post wrapping up my ninth Diana Evans recital. Each year brings new experiences, new memories, and more anticipation for what's to come the next year.

-xoxo clb