Friday, April 30, 2010

Lunchtime Links for April 30th, 2010

Review: Screwtop Wine Bar, Arlington VA

If you asked if I wanted to go to a wine bar about 5 years ago, I would've said "Helllllll no"- c'mon, just out of college, the most "wine" I knew came in a box and I was perfectly content with swigging light beer.  However, I've since expanded my tastes for alcohol and am happy to say that wine bars are a fun type of place for me to try.  My friends and I recently went to Screwtop Wine Bar, a relatively new wine shop/wine bar in Arlington, VA. 

The place is v. cute and gives off a friendly, casual vibe.  Reservations can be made for parties of 5+, which is what we had, and we sat at a spacious long table alongside the wall of wine bottles for sale.  I got a glass of white, the name of which I had put into my phone, but now I can't find it, so..... it was a light, crisp wine, possibly from Spain? And reasonably priced at around $7 or so.  Many of my friends opted for the 2 wine flights available that night, one of which you can see here:

Virginia is for Wine Lovers flight

I loved the presentation- each person got a laminated wine flight placemat, with each wine's description on it- much better than other wine flights that I've had, where the server runs down each wine verbally, you nod like you're going to actually remember, and then you're like "ummm I have no idea which one I'm drinking...".  Nice touch, especially if you really like a specific one and want to order another glass.   

I didn't take photos of all the food, but D was right next to me, so here is their French Onion Sandwich.  I'm not sure about the specific name, because it seems to no longer be on their current menu, but he seemed to like it, saying it tasted like French Onion Soup.  V. beige but I imagine it'd be good if you're a French onion soup fan. 

I ordered the I <3 Grilled Cheese Sliders, as recommended by T.  These were cute little heart-shaped (or butt-shaped...yes I am 12) pressed grilled cheese sandwiches.  The tomato coulis in the cup on the right was delicious and paired well with the grilled cheese.  It's a pretty small portion, but sometimes too much grilled cheese can make you nauseous, so I suppose it's for the best, haha.

Overall, I loved the atmosphere and the general feel of this wine bar/store.  It's a great laid-back spot and I can see why it's packed all the time.  Prices are a bit steep, especially for some of the wine by the glass, but I guess a place like this would naturually encourage buying by the bottle instead.  I look forward to trying out more of their wine selection soon! 

Screwtop Wine Bar
1025 North Fillmore Street
Arlington, VA 22201
Reservations available only for parties of 5+   

Olay Regenerist Skin Care Starter Trio

I recently signed up online to receive an Olay skin care set, but wasn't sure if I made the cut (limited quantities available).  I was pleasantly surprised to find this package, with an Olay Regenerist Skin Care Starter Trio set inside.  It contains a cleanser, moisturizer, and eye cream- more detailed product information can be found here.

The cleanser has been great so far- I have pretty sensitve skin and so far, no reactions.  It's got really fine exfoliating beads to keep my skin smooth, and has worked well without being drying.  The moisturizer has an interesting pump-cap mechanism where you push the top of the bottle down to get the product out.  If any of you have seen/used the makeup removers at Sephora tester stations, you know what I'm talking about.  This was a little too rich for me (or maybe I'm putting too much on, haha), so I've only been using it sparingly as of now.  The eye cream is a great size for travel so I think I'll be saving it for that.  

Overall, I'm really happy to have received this set and glad that the products have worked out well on me so far.  That says a lot, considering my skin care products rarely change, since I'm always so scared of my skin freaking out from something in the product.  I've heard that these new "high-end" Olay lines are comparable to department store products, so if you're at all curious and/or want to save some cash, I'd recommend trying it out.    

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Lunchtime Links for April 29th, 2010

Tarte Goodies

Tarte Cosmetics recently had a 40% off sale online, which was really fantastic and I obviously couldn't pass it up.  My main purchase was the Park Avenue Princess mineral powder bronzer- I've probably gone through about 4 of these since I first tried a sample from Sephora, I love it that much.  The powder itself is really fine and blends really really well.  Also, I can layer on more color as my face gets darker in the summer, but still use it year-round for a little hit of color.  

I also ordered a tube of the multiplEYE primer, since I've become more interested in eyelash primers since I won the one from CARGO.  I've been using this one under my mascara, and it looks a little crazy when you put it on (paints your lashes white), but coats well and builds up some volume which I desperately need.  

I also received a free sample of the Clean Slate primer- which I brought with me to NYC for a weekend trip, and reminded me how great face primer is.  It's such an easy step but makes your skin so smooth and better prepared to hold your makeup all day.  Loves it!  If you sign up for Tarte's newsletter, you can find out about upcoming sales and specials they have on their site- it's definitely worth it, especially for sales like this!      

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Lunchtime Links for April 28th, 2010

31-cent Scoop Night @ Baskin-Robbins!

If you are near a Baskin-Robbins, tonight is the 31-cent Scoop Night, from 5-10pm! 

Details here:

"Join us for 31 Cent Scoop Night at Baskin-Robbins® and help us honor America's firefighters. The Baskin-Robbins Community Foundation is donating $100,000 to the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation™. Participating stores will reduce prices of ice cream scoops to 31 cents*. At some locations, you may also have an opportunity to make a donation to your local fire charities."

For more information about the event, go to the Baskin-Robbins event site here.

Sephora by OPI: Nonfat Soy Half Caff Nail Polish

I've really been loving the Sephora by OPI nail polishes- so many fun colors, and at $9 each, I don't feel bad about buying fun/trendy colors (especially for pedicures).  Besides the trendy colors, it's good to have some simple nude shades for everyday wear- I also love the way nude polish looks in general.  I have to admit, I was def interested in this polish initially from the name: Nonfat Soy Half Caff.  Cheesy and no real connection between coffee and nail polish?  Obviously, but so cute!!  It's lighter in person vs. the photo above, more of a creamy pinkish tan shade that looks great with two coats.  It's universally flattering for most skin tones- and I say that mainly because my mom stole this bottle from me after seeing it, haha.  So I'll have to go back to the store to pick up another bottle for this spring/summer.  Try it out at the store when you get a chance!  

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Lunchtime Links for April 27th, 2010

Georgetown Cupcake: Easter Cupcakes

Easter Buttercream, Easter cupcake

I don't celebrate Easter in the real sense, but I love all of the "stuff" associated with it, ha!  Everything is cute pastel colors, candy, and all fun stuff :o)

I went to Georgetown Cupcake on Easter to try out the free Easter Buttercream cupcake (left), and then figured I might as well pick up one of the Easter cupcakes too, since it's the only day it's available. Not surprisingly, the line was growing even before the store opened- mostly people picking up large Easter party pre-orders.  The Easter Buttercream cupcake was a vanilla cake with what I believe was their vanilla buttercream frosting, dyed purple as you can see in the photo.  The Easter cupcakes came in both vanilla and chocolate (cake and frosting), so I picked a chocolate cake/vanilla frosting option since the free one was a vanilla cake already.  I believe these were just their regular Vanilla & Chocolate and Chocolate & Vanilla cupcakes, but super cute with the addition of Easter-themed fondant cutouts.  Side-by-side, you could definitely taste a difference between the frostings, but both were delicious and put me in the mood for "spring" for sure :o)     

The Hills: Final Season!

The end of a crazy, crazy era: The Hills' final season is upon us, starting tonight!  I've loved this whole franchise ever since the early days of Laguna Beach, so I will be sad to see it come to an end. 

More importantly- the promos for the final season have been on non-stop, and I am currently OBSESSED with the nude zip-up platforms that are in the commercial. 

Here's a link to the promo here, from Pink Is The New Blog.

Anyone have any idea what these shoes are??  Loooooooove them!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Lunchtime Links for April 26th, 2010

Georgetown Cupcake: Key Lime + White Chocolate Raspberry


Key Lime, White Chocolate Raspberry

Some bright and cute Georgetown Cupcake flavors for the spring :o)  Key Lime is on the regular menu (but not on the daily menu), and White Chocolate Raspberry is one of the special flavors for April.  

The Key Lime cupcake tastes like, well, a margarita.  Not in a real alcohol-y way, but in a v. lime-y way, haha.   I love the look of this cupcake with the little sugared lime slice, and the specks of fresh lime zest in the frosting.  Despite not being a huge Key lime fan, I still think this is a fresh-tasting, fun option for anyone looking for a non-chocolate/overly decadent cupcake.

The White Chocolate Raspberry cupcake is also a fresh, spring-y flavor.  There are little bits of fresh raspberry in the cake, which pairs well with the frosting.  I tried this one with a cup of black tea, and it went really well, especially with the somewhat strong white chocolate flavor.

Maybe it was the fact that I was drinking tea at the time, but both of these seemed like perfect "Afternoon Tea" party cupcake flavors.  Just think of how cute these would be stacked up on a cake stand along with some tea sandwiches and scones :o)  If you're in the mood for some non-traditional cupcakes, try these out- White Chocolate Raspberry is only available through April!

More Liberty of London for Target

A few remaining pieces that I got from the Liberty of London for Target collection:


I initially was iffy about this top (I typically do not wear much color at all), but saw that a few fashion bloggers reviewed it pretty positively, so I figured I'd give it a try.  I'm glad I did, because it's a super cute, surprisingly versatile top with lots of great details.  It's long enough for me to tuck into pencil skirts, or wear it flowy with a belt over jeans.  The collar ruffles can get a little wonky at times by folding over the wrong way, especially if you wear a cardigan over it, but that's the only minor "issue" I've encountered.  


I also got two bags online, and was v. happy with both when they arrived.  The top one is a plastic-coated magazine-sized tote bag, which lays flat and has a small zippered pocket on the inside, as well as a magnetic snap closure on top.   It feels a little thicker than my real Liberty of London coated tote, but generally the same look and feel of the real deal.   The other tote is a slouchy fabric bag with a hot pink fabric lining the inside.  I like that it's large enough to carry a ton of stuff, but the handles pull in to close/make the bag smaller if there isn't much stuff inside.  The black and white pattern is interesting but still neutral enough for everyday use.  

So this post finally wraps up all of my Liberty of London for Target goodies!  Some stores carry more items than others, so take a look around if you're interested in any of the items that are being offered!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Lunchtime Links for April 23rd, 2010

Georgetown Cupcake: Free Chocolate Chip Cupcake

Since the Bethesda location of Georgetown Cupcake is relatively easy for me to get to, I try to only go when the free ones are flavors I haven't tried yet.  That's my idea of "restraint" in this situation, so just go with it, haha.  On this day, the flavor being Chocolate Chip, I of course went and picked it up, knowing full well that I was going to like it no matter what.  I mean please, it's Chocolate Chip, if you like chocolate you will probably like this.

This cupcake is v. similar to their Vanilla & Chocolate cupcake, with the exception of mini chocolate nubs showing on the top of the cake portion.  This cupcake is delicious, the only suggestion I would make is to change the frosting to make it more "chocolate chip"-ish.  I'm thinking more like a cookies n' cream type frosting, with chocolate chips mixed in instead of crushed Oreos.  This frosting is delicious but totally overpowered the cake portion.  But hey, in the end, it's CHOCOLATE- I'm not complaining too much, haha!  

Review: Stonyfield Maple Vanilla Yogurt


  • I Paid: $0.80 at Harris Teeter
  • Description: Seasonal; Limited Edition; Smooth and Creamy

As soon as I heard about the limited edition Stonyfield Maple Vanilla yogurt,  I knew that I had to get my hands on some.  Seriously, tell me that a certain flavor or food is a "Limited Edition", and chances are I will search high and low for it.  Unfortunately, I couldn't find this particular yogurt for a while at my nearby grocery stores, so I kept searching- until they suddenly appeared at Harris Teeter a little over a month ago.  

As expected, this yogurt smelled and tasted like maple syrup, but not overwhelmingly so.  It still had a strong vanilla flavor but with a wafting syrup-y pancake touch :o)  I have bought this flavor a few times since I first found it, so I think it's safe to say that I like it a lot.  It is great mixed into cereal, and while I haven't tried this yet, I think it would be awesome to put a spoonful of this on top of real pancakes for a different take on pancakes with syrup.  If you like pancake-y foods, definitely give this one a try! 

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Tarte Cosmetics Earth Day Special

Tarte Cosmetics is running a Earth Day special online:

30% off sitewide with code "EARTHDAY", today through Sunday (3/25).  Also, free shipping on orders $40+.

More info and products here.

Lunchtime Links for April 22nd, 2010

Stonyfield Yogurt Cup

I'm one of those seemingly few people that take rebates and redeemable offers v. seriously- especially if it's for something that I like anyway.  Case in point- Stonyfield had a promotion a while back for a free reuseable yogurt cup, redeemable by mailing in a few foil lids that had the promotion printed on it.

Fast forward a few months, and I got this cute little package in the mail.  It's a cute Stonyfield brand yogurt (or snack) cup with a screwtop lid, so the top won't pop off and spill anywhere once it's closed tight.  Now I can buy the larger quart size tubs and put the yogurt in this cup, vs. buying the invididual cups all the time.  I also received a few coupons for Stonyfield and Preserve products which was pretty cool also.  Thanks Stonyfield!  If you aren't signed up to receive e-mails from Stonyfield already, I'd recommend it- it's the best way to find out about promotions, giveaways, and coupons that they offer.   

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Lunchtime Links for April 21st, 2010

Some Starbucks Musings

A few things of note that I felt worth sharing about Starbucks that I've noticed/thought about lately:

  • If you are getting an iced drink, ask for "Light Ice".  This is more than enough ice to keep your drink cold, without being left with a full cup of ice after finishing your drink.  It also doesn't water down your drink as much or as quickly.  Most importantly, "Light Ice" will theoretically give you more of your drink :o)
  • If you go to Starbucks even semi-regularly, it would benefit you to buy and register a gift card for their rewards program.  You get free customization (like soy milk, flavored syrups, etc.) that you normally have to pay extra for, plus other nice extras for no membership charge. 
  • DOUBLE CHOCOLATY CHIP FRAPPUCCINO. How the F did I not know about this before???  I will probably give this a try soon, but the slightly less scary-calorie version (Tall without whipped cream).

Easter Cupcakes

 For this year's Easter "dinner", I decided to make a themed dessert/snack for the group.   I wanted something easy and fun, which hopefully didn't require too much extra grocery shopping.  I figured that Pillsbury Funfetti cake mix and frosting could be sufficiently festive enough, due to the rainbow sprinkles mixed throughout.   I upped the festive-ness by adding Cadbury Mini Eggs into the cupcakes before baking, plus on top of the cupcakes once they were frosted.  I baked both regular and mini cupcakes, and I think I preferred the mini ones better overall, because they were just the right bite-sizes of sugary cake. 


Hidden Mini Egg

As you can see, the Mini Eggs' shells melted off while baking, and sank to the bottom of the cupcake.  No worries though, these still tasted sugary sweet and chocolate-y, just the way Easter is supposed to be....right?

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Lunchtime Links for April 20th, 2010

Review: Yoplait Light Red Velvet Cake Yogurt

  • I Paid: $0.69 at Harris Teeter

  • Description: Fat Free, Red Velvet Cake

There are some things that just sound too good to be true.  And even when you know you should dial back your expectations, there's a little part that thinks maybe it'll be good anyway.  But then the sad, sad reality comes busting right through in the end.

That melodramatic blurb pretty much sums up how I feel about the Yoplait Light Red Velvet Cake yogurt pictured above.  I figured I might as well try it out since a) it's new; and b) I love red velvet cake.  Obviously I wasn't expecting it to taste JUST like the real cake, but I did think that if it was good enough, I'd put it in my regular morning yogurt rotation. 

Ok...ummmm. WTF. Not only did this yogurt not taste like cake, cocoa, cream cheese frosting, or anything remotely resembling red velvet cake, I literally could NOT figure out what it tasted like period.  And I don't think it's because it's a Light flavor- I have had Yoplait Light before so I know what to expect in terms of the artificial taste.  I ate about half the container just to try to figure out what it tasted similar to/reminded me of, and seriously couldn't come up with anything. "Sugar yogurt" was about as close as I could get.  If anyone feels like taking on the challenge of trying this out, please let me know if you can figure out what this flavor actually tastes like!!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Lunchtime Links for April 19th, 2010

Japanarama Review: Milk Coffee Pocky

Pocky with added Calcium, woo

Kit Kats aren't the only snack that makes limited edition/special flavors- Pocky does as well, just not as frequently, as far as I've seen.  I generally enjoy any flavor of Pocky sticks- they're pretty much thin cookie sticks coated in chocolate, crispy and chocolately at the same time.  I picked up this box a while back since it was new to me: Milk Coffee flavor.     



Since I like Pocky and coffee-flavored snacks in general, I think you know where I'm headed with this review.  The package smelled like the cold milk coffee drinks you find everywhere in Japan- they're pretty sweet, but I love them.  Taste-wise, they had a mild coffee flavor and weren't too sweet, a fun little snack for when you're in the mood for something besides chocolate.  Also, the cow on the front is super cute, although technically creepy if you think about a cow drinking a glass of milk and coffee.........haha.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Lunchtime Links for April 16th, 2010

  • Cadbury: Cafes in the works.
  • Meatball Shop: Review from Serious Eats.
  • Work Lunch: Tips for bringing in salads for lunch.
  • MAC: Alice + Olivia collaboration coming in July.
  • Cute: Baby pug, awwww.

Georgetown Cupcake: Passover Cupcake + Cherry Blossom Cupcake

Georgetown Cupcake has a few more special flavors in April, due to multiple Passover cupcakes (Coconut macaroons with chocolate/caramel drizzle), Easter cupcakes with various theme fondant toppings, plus the two monthly specials (Cherry Blossom, White Chocolate Raspberry).  I picked up the Chocolate-drizzle Passover cupcake so I could try it before Passover ended, and decided to pick up a Cherry Blossom one as well, since I had just gone out to see the real cherry blossoms earlier that day.

As I mentioned above, the Passover "cupcake" is really a coconut macaroon shaped like a cupcake.  It's a really cute presentation, and nicely toasted on top.  The toasted part actually reminded me of breakfast hash browns, haha.  Basically it tastes like a ball of shredded coconut, at least to me.  It's got a thick, chewy consistency- if you like coconut desserts or coconut in general, it's a cute little dessert or snack :o)
The Cherry Blossom cupcake is totally adorable and perfect for spring.  You can't really tell in my photo, but there are little chunks of cherry in the cake itself, which made for a really pretty presentation as well.  It isn't overwhelmingly cherry-flavored, which I liked.  

Just as an aside, I was not expecting to like these flavors due to coconut and cherry both being pretty low on my "flavor preferences" list, haha.  I would not get the Passover cupcake again, but I would get the Cherry Blossom one again, it still had a light, fresh flavor that I liked.  I'm assuming that since Passover's over they won't be carrying the cupcake anymore, but Cherry Blossom is available through April. 

Zen Tara Tea, Bethesda

I love tea, and I have my personal preferences, but I'm always looking to learn more about different types of tea that are available.  I recently heard about Zen Tara Tea in Bethesda, but didn't get a chance to make it out there until I heard about their Tea Tastings they offer a few times a month. 

 N and I went to the April Fool's themed "A Fool For Tea or Can Tea Fool You?" tasting, and it was a fun experience! It was a little different from their regular classes, in that we had to taste and guess what type of tea it was before finding out (vs. tasting and learning about each tea without guessing first).  It was definitely interesting- some teas are easier than others to figure out (like a light green tea vs. black Earl Grey tea) but to figure out exactly what tea it is can be pretty challenging!  Overall it was a v. informative, friendly class, and you get packets of free samples, as well as information about each tea.  The classes are v. small (around 10 people max.) so I'd recommend reserving a spot ahead of time if any upcoming classes sound interesting to you.   

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Lunchtime Links for April 15th, 2010

Walkers Shortbread Cookies From The

I was fortunate enough to win this great Walkers Shortbread package courtesy of The Nibble, a gourmet food website, about a month or so ago.  I love shortbread cookies, and all of these are dipped in chocolate, yum!  It was interesting to have not only the regular shortbread type but also the Ginger and Orange Royals, which I had never tried before.  I shared most of these with friends and co-workers, and everyone seemed to enjoy them :o) 

Thank you to both The Nibble and Walkers for having a great giveaway!  Check out The Nibble's site for lots of great information on food, and a weekly giveaway- good luck to all of you that enter!  

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Lunchtime Links for April 14th, 2010

Review: More Treet Shop Goodies

Another tasty set of goodies from the Treets Bakery!  I picked these up at the Bethesda Farmers' Market in early March: Peanut Butter Cup Brownie; Nut Bar (shortbread bottom); and another Peanut Butter-filled Whoopie Pie :o) All were delicious, but the PB Brownie was my favorite of this bunch- there was a mini Reese's PB cup inside the brownie, making it extra rich and peanut buttery. 

I heard that in addition to their online shop and Bethesda Farmers' Market stand, Treets mini-cupcakes are now available at the Cereal Bowl in Cleveland Park, and should be available at the Clarendon farmers' markets this summer as well, yay!

Free Starbucks Coffee Tomorrow

Free Starbucks coffee on Thursday if you BYO mug :o) 

Details here.


Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Lunchtime Links for April 13th, 2010

DC Cherry Blossoms!

It's that time of the year- photos from a recent trip out to the DC Tidal Basin for the Cherry Blossoms!  Unfortunately the morning that S and I went, it was a little chilly and grey, as you can see in the photos.  However, that didn't stop the crowds from coming out and enjoying the flowers.  Hope you enjoy the photos!

Also, we caught part of the Lululemon Yoga session going on that we had heard about- not sure about the official count, but a TON of people were in attendance!  Looked so cool to see so many people practicing yoga at the same time!

Care Package from Shop n' Chomp

I was super surprised and excited to receive this fab "Thank You" care package from Shop n' Chomp!!  She sent me: Hawaiian Luau BBQ flavored kettle chips, "Keep calm and have a cupcake" notebook, Vera Wang Princess body lotion, and China Glaze nail polish! I've already eaten the BBQ chips (kettle chips, so good), and I can't wait to use everything else soon! Thank you so much for a fantastic surprise!  You should check out her blog if you get a chance- lots of cute posts on fashion, beauty, and fun LA-related stuff :o)

Monday, April 12, 2010

Lunchtime Links for April 12th, 2010

Madden Girl Spring Shoes!

Yay for more fun shoes!  I bought these online because they were super cute, but also because DSW was running some great specials that week.  If you aren't already, I would absolutely recommend becoming a DSW member (it's free) because they offer so many coupons, discounts, and fun stuff in general. 

Ok, onto the shoes.  The Stoneham gladiator sandals are unbelievably comfortable, and the straps haven't bugged me once- a common issue with strappy gladiator flats.  I am definitely going to get another pair in a different color- the only problem is deciding on what color to get!

The Kallista shoes are cute, but not quite as successful.  I love the strappy look of them, and the platform base makes these shoes v. comfortable.  However, the back heel is a little high for me? possibly, and after a long time of walking around, left some marks on the back of my legs- ouch.  Also, the front toe opening caused some damage to my skin as well.  I think I'll try these again though, maybe for less walking, and hopefully they will stretch out a little, since I really do like them otherwise!


Review: Lancome Oscillation Mascara

The funny thing about entering online contests is that there's usually a bit of a lag time between entering the contest and actually receiving something.  Case in point- this Lancome Oscillation mascara was from a contest back in November, haha.  I'm definitely not complaining though- it was a great surprise package, and I had wanted to try this out since it first came out.  The idea of a holding a vibrating mascara wand up to your eyeball might not sound v. appealing, but don't be scared to try it out!  The mascara goes on really smooth and coats easily.  You don't need too many coats to get noticeable length, although not much volume that I could see.  The only personal issue is that I'm used to not needing eye makeup remover (I normally use Fiberwig mascara, which comes off with warm water).   Which isn't really a huge issue, but moreso scary when I forget and this mascara is smudged everywhere, haha.  But really, don't be scared off by the moving wand and try it out if you're in the market for a new mascara!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Lunchtime Links for April 9th, 2010

  • Eek: Scary stats on ice cream treats.
  • OMG: Ben & Jerry's Flourless Chocolate Cake ice cream.
  • Mango & Tomato: DIY Chili Oil.
  • Makeup: Tips on when to get rid of old makeup.
  • Gossip Girl: Reality Index from NYMag.

Weekend Shopping Haul

Just a quick post to share some fun stuff I got last weekend- can you tell that I'm SO ready for Spring/Summer?? 

Banana Republic ring, on sale for less than $9.00!  Simple, cute, everyday-type ring- I love it already!  Check out more of their pretty rings here.

BCBGeneration Twisted-Panel Jersey Skirt.  On sale at Bloomingdale's, plus 20% off for Friends & Family weekend = Got this for around $20! Super cute, comfy, and will be fun with tights or without once the weather's nicer.

Onto Filene's Basement- Super excited that I found this uber-soft Juicy Couture tank, because I literally had JUST seen it at Bloomingdale's, but not in my size.  At Filene's, it was only $8.99!  Plus 15% off that with a coupon!

And finally, a BCBG jersey top that I had my eye on last season but never bought- comfy, fun print, and around $40 with my 15% off coupon!

Needless to say, I'm v. happy with my weekend purchases.  I got stuff that I really like, and saved a bit of money in the process! Anyone else SO ready for spring - and more importantly, spring clothing??

Rice Paddies Grill, Bethesda, MD

Noodles with Grilled Pork

A quick post about a small, casual spot in Bethesda- Rice Paddies Grill.  It's located just outside of the main "restaurant" area of downtown Bethesda, but v. easy to get to (a few minutes from Barnes and Noble, next to the Starbucks on Wisconsin Avenue by the co-op).  I had heard about this place before but didn't think to try it out until recently, when I found myself walking around the area and figured I'd pick up some dinner.  The menu is pretty small, but offers a good selection of grilled meats, dry and soup (Pho) noodle dishes, as well as veggie options.  I ordered the Vermicelli noodles with Grilled Pork, and sat outside to wait while my order was being prepared.  It took maybe 10 minutes, which was fine since the weather was so nice out.  For under $10, this was a huge portion of grilled pork, veggies, and noodles (underneath).  I thought it might be too much, but I'll be honest, I pretty much ate 80% of it without stopping, haha.  Especially with the fish sauce (top left container) mixed in, it was a great combo of hot/cold, with tender chunks of pork being the highlight of the dish.  I look forward to trying out more of their dishes soon, since I love Asian noodle dishes and most Vietnamese food in general.  There is a small dining area but it seemed like most people I saw were also there for take-out.  This would be a great spot to pick up lunch during work if you work in the downtown Bethesda area!        

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Lunchtime Links for April 8th, 2010

Dupont Circle Eats: BGR Burger Joint + Hello Cupcake

En route to the Chelsea Handler book signing at Borders, I stopped in Dupont for a bite to eat and to meet up with my friend B.  Unfortunately the signing was "sold out" while I was waiting in line- they had a limited number of wristbands for the signing, boooooooo.  However, I got in some good eats beforehand, so all was not lost :o)

I hadn't planned on eating lunch there but since I was in the area, I stopped in BGR The Burger Joint Dupont for a burger. I've been a fan of theirs since the one in Bethesda opened, so I pretty much knew what to expect. 

I got a regular burger with lettuce, tomato, pickles, and mojo sauce.  The burger itself was a little overdone for my idea of "medium-rare", but still juicy and delicious.  It was pretty hard to eat this with one hand while photographing it, especially sitting out on a bench on a windy day, haha.  Sorry the photo's so bright, but you get the general idea of what their burgers look like.  BGR has lots of burger and non-burger choices, and I'd highly recommend the sweet potato fries as well!     
B and I met up as I was finishing my burger, and we headed over to Hello Cupcake.  I was able to redeem my free cupcake (via Facebook), and also meet Penny, the super friendly owner/executive chef.  We had been in contact over e-mail about the decorating classes they have started offering, so she recognized my name when I redeemed my free cupcake, haha. 
Cherry Blossom

B got the seasonal Cherry Blossom cupcake, which had a fun surprise of cherry preserves in the middle.  He seemed to like it a lot, especially the cherry flavor with the lemon cake- I'm not a big cherry person so I'm just taking his word on it, haha.

Cookies n' Cream

I got the Cookies n' Cream cupcake, which I had not previously tried here.  Love that there were chunks of mini Oreos in the cake!  The frosting was a little too much for me but overall a great flavor and v. tasty! If you are a fan of cherry items, definitely check out Hello Cupcake soon- the Cherry Blossom cupcake is available until April 11th.

Review: Cargo Lash Activator Night

I won this CARGO Lash Activator Night a while back from the Makeup Junkie blog, but wanted to wait on posting about it until after I'd used it for a while, since it's not a "quick-fix" type of product.

I wasn't really sure what to expect from this product- I'm realistic enough to realize that I'm not going to wake up looking like I'm wearing great falsies, haha.  However, I am pleasantly surprised by this product.  I have seen a little bit of an increase in the thickness of my lashes overall, and have found that less lashes are randomly falling out.  There is also a coordinating Lash Activator mascara, if anyone's interested in trying that out.  It's sometimes hard to remember to put this on at night, but I am looking forward to using it and seeing if my current results last/get better!

Thank you to Makeup Junkie and CARGO cosmetics for having such a great giveaway! 

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Lunchtime Links for April 7th, 2010

Quick Trip to the Zoo

After trying out The Cereal Bowl, we headed down the street to the National Zoo since it was so nice outside.  We saw lots of families enjoying the day as well- it was a great sunny day to stroll around.  Just wanted to share some photos, especially the ones on the bottom - we caught one of the giant pandas meandering over to a log and just collapse right on top- I guess it's a comfortable position for them??  And then the other giant panda was eating an apple - SO CUTE!  Everyone was taking pics of the panda enjoying the snack :o)

Not dead- sleeping, haha