Happy Weekend!

Saturday, July 30, 2011

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I just wanted to do a quick post today to wish everyone a very happy weekend and apologize to anyone who tried to comment on my posts yesterday, I am having some trouble with Blogger and it was only letting the author of the blog (me!) leave comments. Anyway, its all fixed up so comment away! I hope everyone has wonderful plans for a wonderful weekend!

Also, don't forget, you only have a few days to enter my stamp giveaway!

IPhone Photos of the Week

Friday, July 29, 2011

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Hope everyone is having a fantastic Friday and has plans to have a wonderful weekend!


Deep Dark Secrets

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

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{kiss the groom photography}

I recently told one of my best friends (hey tay!) about Love, Julie for the first time. She loved it, of course but I was apprehensive about first telling her because I don't tell just everyone about my blog. My family reads it and most of my friends by now but when acquaintances ask about it, I get a little embarrassed and I am not quite sure how to answer the questions, "What do you write about?", or "How do you have time to do that", or, "Isn't it weird talking to people you don't even know?"

Another part of this is the fact that I am not quite sure I am ready for everyone I have ever met to know my opinion on rose pink peonies, my etsy wish list, and my love of dessert crepes. I guess it is sort of like when you invite two different groups of friends to a party and when they all arrive you don't know how to act because you act differently with different groups of people... Maybe that's just me...

Anyway, I wrote this because I want to know about you. Do you tell everyone about your blog, attach it to your personal facebook, sign every email you send with the url? Or do you write mostly for yourself and keep your blog completely separate from your "real world" life?

I can't wait to find out!!!

Our Engagement Party

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

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My parents and Mitchell's parents threw us a fabulous engagement party this weekend in my parents backyard. My college friends (and bridesmaids) from San Diego flew in for the party and weekend and we invited a whole backyard of family and friends to celebrate with us!


Mitchell and me with my Grandma!


The morning of the party we went to the Saratoga Farmers Market and picked up flowers for all the tables






Meeting the chickens



bridesmaids!









Sorry about the picture overload post, I usually try to keep them to a minimum but Mitchell and I both had such an amazing day and weekend, I couldn't help share it all! So many people we loved could come to the party, the backyard looked like a dream (I wish it were big enough for the wedding!), and it was so nice seeing my friends for the first time since we have gotten engaged. I can't wait for more wedding fun!

Weekend Highlights

Monday, July 25, 2011

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:: Friday ::

- fantastic day off - 

- quality time with my college roommate titty (yeah. titty.)

- banana pancakes and omelets at Stacks, of course

- last minute party errands - way too many trips to party city -

- Strawberry-banana Orange Julius smoothies -

- Power nap -

- Happy hour margaritas and sweet potato fries at Elephant Bar -

- pick up more friends and bridesmaids, Taylor and Kelsy, from the airport -

- Downtown Campbell fun - 



:: Saturday ::


- Early morning trip to the Saratoga farmers market for flowers for the party - 

- Party set up/ flower arranging - 

- Pizza my heart slice and a shirt -

- Trip to visit Mitchell's family and cat, Dre -

- four girls, one shower, one blow dryer, one mirror equals strict getting ready stations -

- Wonderful engagement party with family and friends! -



:: Sunday ::


- Sunday-funday mimosa brunch - 

- Second breakfast of banana cake - 
- Airport trip number one -

- Killed time by eating hotdogs and beer -

- Food comma, obviously -

- Airport trip number 2 -
- Asleep by 8:45 -



I hope you had a weekend as wonderful as I did, I can't wait to show you some pictures from the party and weekend soon!!

Today is a Fabulous Day

Friday, July 22, 2011

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Today is wonderful because:

- I have the day off -

- Tomorrow is our engagement party -

- We are having a world famous, totally delicious, banana cake from Icing on the Cake to celebrate -

- My friends (and bridesmaids) are flying from San Diego tonight -

- I haven't seen them since I got engaged so I get to show off my new ring :) -



Stamp Giveaway!!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

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I am so excited to announce an exciting giveaway from the etsy shop, Cupcake Tree! I featured her adorable, hand carved stamps on the blog and she has generously offered to give a lucky winner one full sized stamp or three mini stamps! Here are my pick for favorites but check out her shop here for her huge collection, she has stamps of everything you can imagine!



Ways to Enter:

Entry 1 (mandatory) : Be a follower of Love, Julie - if you aren't click the Let's be Friends button on the upper right side of the page and join the club - we're fun!

Entry 2 : Visit Cupcake Tree and tell us the stamp (or mini stamps!) you would choose if you win!

Entry 3 : Favorite Cupcake Tree on Etsy


That's three ways to enter - make sure you leave a separate comment for each and don't forget to add your email! The giveaway will end in two weeks so you have until August 4th to enter!


What I Wish I Were Wearing Wednesday

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

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Engament Party




Saturday is Mitchell and my engagement party (exciting!!) and this is what I wish I wearing. I love the light coral of the skirt and the anthropology sandals go perfectly! And I know I have used this watch on past Wednesday outfits but this one is in rose gold and is very high up on my wish list right now!

What I will actually be wearing Saturday has not actually been decided, are there rules to what one wears to her own engagement party?

Happy Wednesday everyone, celebrate that we are half way through the week!!

Weekend Highlights

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

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:: Friday ::

- Nachos and individual champagne bottles after work with Sarah -

- Hotel party with some friends from SLO -

- Los Gatos fun - 



:: Saturday ::

- Quick walk to downtown Campbell -

- Scrambled eggs at Stacks - 

- Tag team apartment cleaning session - 

- Home depot trip to buy boxwoods for the balcony -

- Afternoon nap -

- Coronas and chips and salsa at Aquis - 



:: Sunday ::

- Late sleep in morning -

- Starbucks chai latte and iced coffee -

- Wedding planning with my mom - 

California Love

Monday, July 18, 2011

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Check me out here on Joelle's fabulous blog, Love is Home, talking about just a few of the things that make California the.best.state.ever.

Things to Love Friday

Friday, July 15, 2011

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I am back from Greece and Turkey with a brand new list of things I am loving Friday.





Pretty Girls in Fun, Summer Fedoras 





Greek Yogurt with Fruit
{I ate this in Greece almost every day and now I can't get enough! It is delicious with fruit, honey, nuts, or maple syrup and oh.so good for you!}
 



Bold Magnolia Center Pieces





An Adorable Big Top Ring





A Baby's Room So Cute I Wish I Lived There


I had a wonderfully relaxing week and spent plenty of hours sleeping and soaking up some quality time with Mitchell. I can't wait to get back to blogging next week and start to share some wedding plans and details as get ready to really start planning!

I hope everyone has a fabulous Friday and a spectacular weekend!



Images: 
5. Decorpad via the painted hive


I'm Home!

Monday, July 11, 2011

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I am home from my trip to Turkey and Greece and I had a wonderful time! I can't wait to tell you guys all about it but this week I am looking forward to sleeping a lot, seeing Mitchell a lot, and enjoying lots of American food. I will try to keep up with some posts for this week but if I am not around, don't be concerned, I'll be back soon!

I also want to thank all my fabulous, amazing, spectacular guest posters and everyone who read and commented on their wonderful posts. I had wifi at a few of the hotels I stayed at and I loved turning on my phone and getting all your comments and love. You guys are the very best blogging friends a girl could have!



Image via PoppyTalkHandmade

Baklava Love :: Hannah :: Culture Connoisseur

Friday, July 8, 2011

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To finish up my guest posting I have a second  Baklava recipe from the blogger I would defiantly want to teach me the ways of international cooking and living. Hannah from Culture Connoisseur is an expert at all things international - browse her culture and travel posts for tips about food, safety, and travel etiquette when you are done marveling at her baklava skills.



I want to thank Julie so much for allowing me to share one of my favorite desserts with you today. Baklava has been around for ages and making it is an art of labor and love. I'm Hannah from Culture Connoisseur and I love taking the best recipes and cooking tips from my international friends and sharing them with you

The first time I ever made this I was hosting international students in my home for a movie night. I had many friends from the Middle East coming and I was nervous to hear their judgements. They loved the recipe and argued for a good thirty minutes over which of them could claim its history! My Turkish friend was confident that Turks owned its past. My Persian friend spoke loudly and emphatically that "Perrrrrsians" had developed the tasty treat. Before I knew it my house was an all out war zone of Saudis, Turks, Persians, and Libyans fighting for rights. See? Everyone wants a piece of this action!

Anyways, having had it tested and approved by "the real deal" I'm confident you'll love it.



I've adapted this recipe from DedeMed's Kitchen. (link- http://www.dedemed.com/#axzz1PMCLXyqu) You will need the following ingredients:

2 cups water

2 cups sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup honey
1 (16 oz) pkg. phyllo dough
1 lb. chopped nuts (I use walnuts)
1 cup butter (melted)
1 and 1/2 tsp cinnamon

To begin place the water and sugar in a medium saucepan over med-high heat until the sugar is melted. Add the vanilla and honey and bring to a rolling boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 25 minutes. Then let cool on the stove top.

*While you are cooking the syrup set out the frozen phyllo dough to let it warm up enough for unrolling.



Next, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter the bottom and sides of a 13x9 pan. Place two sheets of phyllo dough in the bottom of the pan and brush on the melted butter lightly with a pastry brush. Repeat until you have 8 sheets layered. (Be sure to cover the unused dough with a damp cloth to keep it from drying out.) Working with the dough can be frustrating, but even if it tears and breaks it will still taste the same!



Sprinkle the 8 sheets with a small handfull of the chopped nuts that have been tossed with cinnamon. Top with two sheets of phyllo dough and brush with butter. Continue layering nuts, 2 sheets, butter leaving 6-8 sheets for the top layer as you did the very bottom (just layering 2 sheets with melted butter).



Once you've finished layering, cut the baklava into the shapes you desire before baking. I like to do the little triangles, but simple squares work fine to. Bake for 50 minutes, until golden and crisp.



Once the baklava is done baking, pour the syrup over each piece with a spoon while it is still hot. Even though it looks like too much syrup, be sure to use it all. It will make for a sweet, mouth-watering ethnic dessert! 

Let it cool, and be sure to lightly cover it with a cloth. Covering with plastic wrap or foil will make the baklava soggy.

Now, in honor of Julie's trip, play a little Greek or Turkish music and enjoy the fruits of your labor! :)

GREEK DREAMS {are sweet dreams} :: Brynn :: Chartreuse and a Twist

Thursday, July 7, 2011

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Today's fantastic guest poster is Brynn from Chartreuse and a Twist, a great blogging friend of mine! She is describing her ultimate Greek Dream and I can only hope I am having this amazing of a time on my vacation right now!


{photo credits: here}


I had a dream last night…
that I was wandering the Greek Isles…
I stayed at the most heavenly villa where the view just took my breath away…


 {photo credits: door – here, girl – here, pool – here}


After exploring the gorgeous beaches, I wandered into town and popped into an adorable little tavern…
Where I feasted on ladenia {a greek sort-of pizza}…oh, it was soooooooooo delicious!!!
I also enjoyed a little ouzo! {when in Greece…}

 {photo credits: tavern – here, ladenia – here, ouzo – here}


Once I was finished with lunch, I met up with a girlfriend and we set out on a shopping adventure around town…
I found the most gorgeously perfect pair of Greek sandals, an amazingly beautiful necklace with a vintage brass stamping of an Ancient Greek woman thinking {totally suited for a goddess!}, and the coolest vintage Greek typewriter {definitely couldn’t pass that one up!}
Ahhh…it was such a perfect afternoon!

{photo credits: Greek street – here, vintage girls in Greece – here, sandals – here, clothesline – here, necklace – purchase here, typewriter – here>


A little later in the evening, I made a wardrobe change into my most lovely Greek goddess inspired ensemble {hair & all!} …
And headed to a rooftop bar overlooking the Isles, where I met some friends…we found ourselves sipping away on fancy Greek cocktails all night long {including this very scrumptious ouzotini!}


erin fetherston, village – here, ouzotini – here, bar – here}

…And then I woke up…
and realized that it was Julie who enjoying all of this lovely Greek goodness!

Thank you so much, Julie, for inviting me to do this guest post! It is such an honor J
 I hope that you have an amazing trip & the time of your life!!! I can’t wait to see the photos!
xoxoxo
Brynn


What I Wish I Were Wearing Had Julie Taken Me On Her Trip With Her Wednesday

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

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My post today is a dream outfit from one of my most inspiring blogging friends, Laura from You Stir Me. I seriously love this girl and I wish I could fly her here for the next year to plan my wedding. 
 

Hi lovelies! I'm thrilled to bits and pieces Julie asked me to come over here and keep this little blog of her's company while she's off having the time of her life in Greece and Turkey! Can you imagine a more romantic place to unwind and celebrate your recent engagement? I suppose that's why she didn't invite me. No hard feelings, Julie! If she had let me hop in her suitcase, here's what I would have packed for a wonderful day gallivanting around one of the most picturesque areas of the world.



Greece/Turkey


I pack light. All I need is a comfy dress, a pair of sandals, a cute bikini and some fun accessories. Throw in a camera to capture everything and I'm ready for my getaway. Sigh...someday I'll make it to Greece and Turkey, but until then, I expect a postcard, Julie!

xox Laura

Summer Vacation :: Tamuna :: A Journey to Style

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

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Today's post is a totally inspiring group of images from Tamuna of A Journey to Style. I hope all my future vacations are filled with such lovely outfits, accessories, and strawberry slushies.


{1, 2, 3}

Hi there all Love, Julie readers, it's Tamuna from A Journey to Style.  Today I'm sharing with you this colorful collage inspired by my thoughts of summer vacation.  I'm planning a trip to California in early July and can't wait to get my feet soaked in the ocean water, lay on the beach for hours enjoying strawberry slushies away from all the worries...
What is your dream vacation like?

VA-cation :: Leslie:: Fresh Out of Lemons

Monday, July 4, 2011

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I am oh-so excited to have one of my first and favorite blogging friends guest posting today. Leslie from Fresh out of Lemons is funny and charming and after reading her posts I sometimes want to live at her house full time. Is that weird?

Anyway... here is the traumatic story of her childhood vacation. I hope mine is going slightly better at this point in my trip. After you are done laughing, check out Leslie's blog here for more fun.


When my husband was a kid, his family traveled all over the country. Two trips to Disney
World, a few west coast tours, and a drive up the east coast into Canada. My experience was
quite different and is probably why I'm a bigger fan of “staycations” rather than vacations.
Aside from a handful of expeditions from Georgia to South Carolina to visit family when I was
really young, the only true "family vacation" occurred the summer before I entered the sixth
grade. My mom, grandmother, sister, and I loaded up in the Ford Aerostar minivan and pointed
north to Virginia, where my aunt and uncle lived. The idea of staying in a hotel would have
been thrilling, but I figured that a week with Ray and Jan would be more familial and hospitable
so I was game. And they promised a neighborhood pool.




I remember very few details of the week that ensued, other than to share with you that my
adventure bubble was burst. Ray and Jan, who worked full time and only had one car, were
thrilled to have another mode of transportation— our minivan— in their driveway. From dawn
to dusk they left us stranded in their house. The only distinct thing that I can recall about being
there was their cat, which spent all day lying in the bathroom floor gnawing at its skin, which
was a surface of bare spots and scabs. To go to the bathroom, you had to step over him. They
assured us that we weren't disturbing him, and they were right. He wouldn't even look up.
Though he did emerge once to throw up on the carpet.


Oh, and the "neighborhood pool" that they told us was in walking distance? Turns out this
mecca was at least a mile away and the route was along a fairly significant and heavily traveled
State road. No sidewalks. Just me, my mom, sister, and almost 70 year old grandmother
pilgrimaging along in the high grass.


My sister and I did get to go to the beach for the first time. On their schedule. Which only
allowed for an hour.

Do I sound bitter? Really, I can laugh about the adventure now. But Ray and Jan weren't
invited to my wedding. ;)

I’m wishing Julie happier travels and wonderful memories (that don’t involve an obsessive
compulsive cat!)

A Classic Greek Dessert :: Jill :: Sincerely Jill

Friday, July 1, 2011

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I am super excited for today's guest post because it involves one of my all time favorite things, dessert- and one of my favorite bloggers, Jill from Sincerely Jill. Enjoy!


I can’t begin to tell you how excited and flattered I am to be a guest blogger for Love,
Julie! While I’m extremely jealous of her future travels (Greece, really?!), I thought it
would be only right to celebrate her incredible trip to Greece by making their most
well-known dessert: Baklava.


I can’t remember my first experience with baklava. I’m sure I didn’t care for it much
when I was younger… nuts in things wasn’t really my bag.

However, I do remember when my now husband and I were first dating he brought
my Nana a piece of baklava from the bakery he worked for, and she LOVED it! He
100% won her over. That and he played golf in high school; I’m sure she would
have passed out if he were Catholic.

There has always been this intimidation factor that has kept me for attempting to
make baklava. People would always say that it was so challenging. Me, being a bit
of a perfectionist, decided it would be best to steer clear of this dessert at least for
the time being rather than mess it up.

What was I to do when Julie asked me to write a guest post? I knew that the oven
and baklava recipe were calling my name. So I decided to take that challenge.

After reading through the recipe, I didn’t get what the big deal was about the recipe.
Seemed pretty straightforward to me. But oh, no, no, no! Phyllo dough is one tricky
beast it is! Rips without cause, doesn’t lay where you want it to...

But I persevered! And so will you! Co-workers and friends will annihilate this
sweet treat within minutes. Don’t be scared. You can do it.






Baklava

Recipe adapted from Emeril Lagasse (link: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/
emeril-lagasse/baklava-recipe2/index.html)

Ingredients
For the Syrup:
• 1 cup honey
• 1 cup sugar
• ¾ cup water
• 1 tablespoon lemon juice
• 2 cinnamon sticks
• 1 (1-inch) strip lemon zest
• Pinch of clove & cardamom

For the Filling and Dough:
• 1 ½ pounds combination of walnuts and almonds
• 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
• 1 teaspoon ground clove
• ¼ teaspoon salt
• 2 sticks unsalted butter, melted
• 1 pound phyllo, thawed according to package instructions

Directions

To make the syrup: Combine the sugar, honey, water, lemon juice, cinnamon sticks,
lemon zest, cloves and cardamom in a medium saucepan. Cook over medium heat,
stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon, until the sugar has dissolved. Reduce the
heat to medium-low and cook until the syrup is slightly thickened, about 10 minutes.
Remove the cinnamon sticks and lemon zest and set syrup aside to cool.

Using a Chef's knife, finely chop the nuts. (Alternatively, if you have a food processor,
pulse the nuts until finely chopped.) In a medium mixing bowl, combine the nuts,
cinnamon, and salt and stir well to combine.
Melt the butter over low heat in a small saucepan.
Using a pastry brush, lightly coat a 13 by 9-inch or 15 by 10-inch baking dish with some
of the melted butter.

Open the package of thawed phyllo and lay the thin sheets on a clean work surface.
Measure the phyllo sheets; if the type you have purchased measures approximately the
same size as the baking dish you are using, then proceed from here. If they are larger
than your baking dish, use a sharp knife to cut the phyllo sheets approximately the same
size as your baking dish. Discard any scraps. Cover the sheets with a piece of plastic
wrap and a lightly damp kitchen towel, as the sheets of phyllo dry out very quickly if left
uncovered.
Position rack in center of oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Place 1 of the sheets of phyllo in the bottom of the buttered baking dish and lightly brush
with some of the melted butter. Repeat this procedure with 6 more sheets of phyllo, for
a total of 7 layers. Measure about 3/4 cup of the nut mixture and spread the nut mixture
evenly over the buttered phyllo sheets. Repeat with 7 more sheets of phyllo, buttering
each layer as before, and top these sheets with another 3/4 cup of the nut mixture.
Continue this layering process, buttering 7 sheets of phyllo and topping each 7 sheets
with 3/4 cup of the nuts, until you have used all of the nut mixture. Layer any remaining
sheets of phyllo on top, buttering between each layer, until all of the phyllo sheets have
been used.

Use a sharp knife to make 4 cuts lengthwise through the layered phyllo at 1 1/2 inch
intervals. (You should end up with 5 lengthwise strips 1 1/2 inches wide.) Now use your

knife to cut diagonally across the strips at 1 1/2-inch intervals to form diamond shapes.
You should end up with approximately 36 diamond-shaped pieces of baklava in the
baking dish.
Bake the baklava until golden brown, about 40 minutes.
Using oven mitts or pot holders, remove the baklava from the oven and set aside on a
wire rack to cool for 5 minutes. Using a ladle or small measuring cup, slowly drizzle the
cooled syrup over the warm baklava. Allow to stand several hours before serving.



I can only hope I am lucky enough to be eating this delicious desserts A LOT during this vacation! Thanks Jill!