wine

BRRRMONT

I recently did a little getaway with my sister to Burlington, Vermont, where we were able to escape the hustle and bustle of NYC and take in the fresh air and relaxing lifestyle of Vermonters. It was certainly much needed and long overdue (our last sister trip was Italy!). We were a bit boujee and decided to fly because 5 hours in the car with each other may have turned the trip sour before we even arrived…just kidding! Below are some of our must-sees, must-dos, and must-haves in Burlington. I also should note that going in the Fall would be ideal because you get to see incredible foliage everywhere you turn.

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First things first – highly recommend renting a car for a few days.  There are a ton of super cute towns and things to do outside of Burlington and its a great opp to see the mountains and trees and just how green (or colorful depending on when you go) Vermont really is. A fun little fact – billboards are illegal in Vermont! So just picture completely unobstructed, clear visibility to the beautiful scenery!

We stayed at the Hilton Garden Inn – I would certainly recommend since its location was perfect. Just a few minutes walk from Church Street, two minutes from Lake Champlain (the hotel actually overlooks the lake), and about a 10-15 minute walk to the campus. Parking was $15 a night if you do decide to rent a car and keep it there.

Below are my recommendations!


EATS!

  • Farmhouse Tap + Grill – AMAZING food. The biscuits were incredible. We split a cheese plate, a fresh, crisp salad, and a savory burger. Highly recommend.

 

 

  • Penny Cluse – absolutely heavenly breakfast – we actually went back TWICE. Definitely get the bucket of spuds…or two. My sister had the special maple french toast and couldn’t say enough good things about it! I loved that I was able to kind of mix and match my breakfast to make my own platter. Gingerbread pancakes are a must! Below is the bucket of spuds and one of my breakfasts.

 

  • August First – the cutest little bakery/cafe EVER. We actually came here multiple times because everything was just so satisfying and palatable. The maple biscuit was so flaky and light it honestly didn’t even need butter. I also had a skillet which was delicious – you can really taste the freshness. My sister had the huevos ranchero and for lunch one day she also had the turkey and brie sandwich. They also had really great sweets, such as doughnuts, cookies, brownies, etc. I’m salivating just thinking about them.

 

 

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  • Hen of the Wood – great little restaurant and bar. Very eclectic drinks and a pretty unique menu. We were not too hungry so instead of full on meals we split some appetizers and split the pasta special. Unfortunately I forgot to take a picture of it, but I must say I finished it in seconds it was that good! Below we tried a cheese, split a salad, calamari, and this super appetizing mushroom flatbread with an egg and a big thick chunk of bacon.

 

  • We also enjoyed creemees, Ben + Jerry’s (duh), Skinny Pancake for some late night crepes and American flatbread. I would also recommend checking out some of the breweries. We are not big beer drinkers but Foam Brewers was super close to our hotel so we walked over to see it.

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  • El Cortijo – SKIP at all costs. Totally not worth it at all. The food was sub par at best – I mean have you ever had shrimp that tasted like dirty fish water? We both had gotten sick after our meal. The service was also rude and irritable – as if they didn’t want our money. The atmosphere was drab and dingy. I don’t know if I have just been spoiled with great Mexican restaurants around me, but for them to pass this off as Mexican cuisine is just insulting.

ACTIVITIES!

  • Cheese Making/Farm Tour at Bread and Butter Farm
    • This was $75 per person and absolutely worth every single penny. We had a private class where we got to make our very own mozzarella. We also got to tour the farm – and play with the pigs, obviously our favorite part! We were able to pair our cheese with house made bread and farm fresh tomatoes and herbs. A wonderful experience and would recommend to everyone who goes to Vermont!

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  • Ben + Jerry’s Factory
    • AKA home. For only a few bucks it was pretty cool to be able to get a little tour of the factory and see how this *God sent* food is created. They have a cute little gift shop and of course an entire section dedicated to where you can buy ice cream. A little walk up the hill, and you will see a park, the Flavor Graveyard, as well as some cows!

 

  • Horse back riding at Lajoie Stables
    • This was what I was looking forward to the entire trip! I love horses and I love horse back riding. This was about 45 minutes away form Burlington but I am so glad we decided to do it. We received a private hour long tour through the whopping 300 acres of land. We were able to see unbelievable mountain views and see some of the 55 horses they have! The ladies who ran it were so sweet and allowed us to stay longer and pet all of the horses.

 

  • Lake Champlain
    • Lake Champlain is absolutely stunning. We were able to see it from our room so it was a short distance to walk. We did evening “hikes” (we walked a path lol) along the lake. They had great little bench swings we sat on and people watched…I mean watched the sunset. It was also pretty cool along the trail they had a skateboard park and little random exercise platforms with some equipment. There are also a ton of activities you can do on the water – from sports, to sunset booze cruises. Whistling Man Schooner Co. came highly recommended to us.

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  • Church Street Marketplace + Farmer’s Market
    • Church Street is a bustling marketplace that spans a few streets long. It is blocked off so you are free to walk in the middle of it. They have a ton of restaurants, bars, boutique clothing stores, book stores, you name it they got it. It was a neat little spot and we took strolls down it every night. They also had the absolute #goals of Farmer’s Markets – we checked it out Saturday before we left – highly suggest you make a point of going to it and getting some specialty foods and goods! We also loved Bennington Potters – it was like the Anthropologie of Vermont!

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  • Explore Farms
    • There are a ton of farms that are family friendly. A lot of them offer cheese making demonstrations, some even have wine tasting and such. I highly recommend exploring local farms and seeing the animals and if they have any events going on!

 

  • UVM
    • After got settled into the hotel, we went up to UVM and explored campus. We stocked up on shirts, hats, and sweatshirts. Very beautiful campus with beautiful buildings and tons of gorgeous flowers!

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Burlington is a wonderful little city with welcoming and neighborly people. They have absolutely amazing fresh food, and the scenery is unmatched! For a short little inexpensive getaway, I totally suggest Vermont!

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FAB FIT FUN – REVIEW

I have been seeing Fab Fit Fun everywhere, so I took the plunge and first ordered the Editor’s box, which I received for only $20 or so. Truthfully, I forgot I kept the subscription, so when I was charged the $50 bucks for the summer box, I figured why not, let’s see what the hype is all about! For the $50 seasonal subscription, you receive a box of goodies ranging from beauty to fashion to fitness. The value of the box is worth more than $200, what a steal!

When you initially subscribe, you fill out a survey, which is to help the FabFitFun team select products that are more in tune with your personal tastes. This does not mean the box is personalized however!


 

To start, I LOVED the Editor’s Box! Check it out below!

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Rachel Pally Reversible Clutch – $60

  • Two clutches in one? Yes, please! I received the blue/pink one. The vibrant color and fun summer pattern can add a pop to any outfit!

Free People Starry Eyed Sleep Mask – $25

  • I love that this had removable cooling inserts!

Kate Somerville ExfoliKate® Intensive Exfoliating Treatment – $75

  • Honestly have not tried yet, but only have heard amazing things. The papaya, pumpkin, + pineapple enzymes perfectly polish your face while the treatment also improves texture, pores, fine lines, and wrinkles.

Spongellé Body Wash Infused Buffer in French Lavender – $16

  • OKUR. The smell of this alone is just incomparable. I am OBSESSED with it. It exfoliates, cleans, and moisturizes! Love the way my skin feels after using it.

tarte Double Duty Beauty™ leave your mark eyeshadow palette – $30

  • tarte is my favorite makeup brand, so I was over the moon when I received this. Seven eye shadows and a white gold highlighter?! I love to create natural, everyday looks with this palette ❤ ❤

Homemade by Ayesha Curry Ceramic Mug – $16

  • Super cute, and perfectly fitting for my desk at work!

Briogeo Don’t Despair, Repair!™ Deep Conditioning Mask – $30

  • Can’t wait to try this especially since summer has been hard on my hair between the heat, styling, salt water, sun, you name it! It certainly needs some hydrations and restoration.

MYTAGALONGS Hot & Cold Gel Pack – $15

  • A perfect hot and cold pack for soothing any muscle aches and pains! Freeze or heat to the desired temp, and place where you need relief. Always good to have!

And now for the Summer box! I also loved this one. I think they included the perfect necessities for summer!

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Coola Sport Sunscreen SPF 50 – $36

  • I have recently tried making everything I put on my body organic, and during summer, when sunscreen is basically the first thing you put on everyday, I was so happy to receive this! It feels great on my skin!

tarte sex kitten eye liner + pro to go eye palette – $43

  • Like I mentioned before, I LOVE tarte products! I actually have this palette and already used two of the colors so I was thrilled to receive a replenished one!

Vasanti Brighten Up! Enzymatic Face Rejuvenator – $34

  • First off, ONE bottle lasts SIX MONTHS. I am lucky if my face wash lasts me three weeks! This scrub brightens, cleanses, rejuvenates, and hydrates! Looks like I don’t have to leave mt house to feel like I went to the spa!

Foreo Luna Fofo – $90

  • This was the first thing I opened and tried. It was pretty cool to use and I was super happy to see that my skin age as my actual age! It is a silicone cleansing brush that features app-driven skin analysis. LUNA fofo analyzes the skin type and moisture level in each zone of the face to create a personalized skin profile.

Summer + Rose Beach towel – $55

  • I don’t know about you, but I feel like during summer I am always searching for a towel. One that is cute, clean, big, not hanging on by a thread, etc. Thank god I received this one. My woes are gone! This over-sized towel is so soft and just perfect for a day at the beach (sand won’t stick) or poolside! 🙂

Erth Pearl “Tu y Yo” Ring – $55

  • I am usually a strictly silver, simple jewelry person. Buuuut this has changed my views on pearls and gold. I love how unique it is. It has two certified natural cultured freshwater pearls and is 14K gold (real gold) plated!

Pier 1 imports Marble Ring Dish – $20

  • I  love marble print, and I love this dish! The perfect addition to my vanity where I can place my rings and things, especially my new Erth ring!

Orlando Pita Play Atmos-Shield – $25

  • Following my organic preferences, this paraben free 10-in-1 thermal heat protection spray helps to fight potential damage caused by heat, UV rays, pollution etc. It helps protect hair, seal split ends, making hair shiny, soft, and smooth! Also, it smells amazing.

IMPORTANT: I also loved the reusable straw they sent to help gain awareness for the plastic crisis taking over the oceans. Save the turtles ❤

Overall, I would definitely recommend FabFitFun! They have awesome, unique, high quality products in their seasonal boxes – all for a price you couldn’t even dream of. Totally worth it, go get yours!

 

 

 

#Armor #Abs

Abs are made in the kitchen. While yes, abs are made in the gym, what you make + eat in your kitchen is what will reveal them. Only about 30% of what you do in the gym will help with the abs, the other 70% is all about what you’re putting into your body. In this post, I will go over (and show you!) some exercises I do to help with my abs. I don’t have a six pack (I do have a sweet tooth 😉 ), but I do know these exercises are some of the best and will def have your abs burning the next day!

I do abs about four times a week. I dedicate one day to all exercises on the stability ball, another day to solely planks, another day leg raises/cable crunches/Russian twists, and another day on just random ab machines.

*Some of these require a pilates ball, but I will also include some other exercises that you can do without*

Feel free to mix and match!


  • Stability ball pike – 4 sets of 25
  • Stability ball mountain climbers – 2 sets of 30
  • Stability ball V-Up – 2 sets of 30
  • Legs on ball crunch – 2 sets of 30
  • Side touches – 2 sets of 60 (30 each side)
  • Crunches on ball – 2 sets of 30
  • Stability ball tuck
  • Hip side raises – 2 sets of 30 (each side)
  • Planks – I do seven minutes – one minute for each of the below
    • Regular plank
    • Star plank
    • Feet on stability ball
    • Left side plank
    • Right side plank
    • Elbows on stability ball plank
    • Regular plank to start plank (every ten seconds switch)
  • Plank rolls – 2 sets of 30
  • Plank knees to elbow – 2 sets of 30(each)
  • Russian Twists (with 12 pound ball) – 4 sets of 25
  • Leg raises – 4 sets of 25
  • Cable crunches – 4 sets of 30
  • Weighted punch crunch – 4 sets of 25

VALENTINE’S DAY WINE GUMMIES

Happy Valentine’s Day sweethearts! ❤  A day full of flowers, chocolates, love…and wine gummies? I think YES. I made these awhile back and actually posted this recipe for another blog, and it was a huge hit so I decided I will share here as well :). Tell the chocolates to stay on the shelves this year, because these are bound to be all the rage – especially if you’re a wine lover.

Seriously the quickest recipe ever – just three ingredients! Since you can use red or white wine, you can cater to whatever you prefer, or if these are for someone else, whatever they prefer. These def can be made for any occasion, whichever cookie cutters you want to use! Easter? Jesus has risen – let’s celebrate with wine gummies! Columbus Day? He was Italian, they make wine, let’s celebrate with wine gummies! Labor Day? What is a little winding down the concept of work without a little wine? Let’s celebrate with wine gummies! You get the gist – and hey if you want to make them just because, I totally get that 😉

 


Ingredients:

1 cup of wine of your choice

4 Tbsp. gelatin

2 Tbsp. maple syrup* (To make sweeter, you can add more maple syrup. I wanted to keep the wine flavor, so I only used 2 Tbsp.)

Directions:

  • Pour wine into a saucepan over low heat. Let heat up for about 3-5 minutes at this low heat, you do not want the wine to boil.
  • Add 1 Tbsp. of gelatin at a time, whisking after each addition to make sure it is combined thoroughly.
  • Add maple syrup to the sweetness you desire. Whisk it all together and remove from heat.
  • Pour into long pan and let chill/set in fridge for 1-2 hours.

You can cut them out in any shape you desire or use cookie cutters, I chose hearts since Valentine’s Day is today 🙂

Note: Once chilled some parts may look bubbly, simply just cut out your shape and flip it over for the smooth side.

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