Fall Fashion Updates

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Hey!

So I recently said in my post about my favorite fall nail colors that I have a super neutral, basic wardrobe because I can’t afford the cost of dressing super seasonally. I thought it would be worth writing a post about how I swap out certain things in my wardrobe and affordable suggestions should you wish to do the same! Everything is linked to the retailer (Boohoo, Dynamite, Joe Fresh, Old Navy) and under $100, I promise. All you have to do is click the picture and you’ll be taken to the retailer. All of these are mostly casual items as I know not everyone works in a formal environment, but I’ll be doing a similar post for work wear, don’t you worry my office girls!

1. Work your weights

No, I’m not telling you to go to the gym, I’d never do that. I’m suggesting you switch up that light sweater for a thicker (and maybe longer) option! In the fall I like to wear open cardigans because it can swing from -2 Celcius to +20 in a single day here in Edmonton. In the morning, I’ll often wear mittens, a hat and a thick scarf with a thick sweater to walk to the bus. In the afternoon, I ditch everything but the sweater. I almost always choose a black or grey to make sure that I can wear this with any outfit I like.
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Boohoo.com, MIA LONG MARL EDGE TO EDGE BOYFRIEND CARDIGAN, $57
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Boohoo.com, MARTHA BOUCLE KNIT EDGE TO EDGE CARDIGAN, $57
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Dynamiteclothing.com, OPEN CARDIGAN SWEATER WITH POCKETS, $59.95

2. Wear your jeans

Every fall I tell myself I’ll just wear tights with my casual dresses and that’ll be fine for fall since I’m not the biggest fan of pants. Until I freeze my butt off one morning and inevitably decide to wear nothing but old man sweatpants allllll winter. Don’t be like me. Well actually, be like me because I just got a new pair of jeans! This is a great time of year to invest in a gorgeous dark wash to wear from errands to a dinner date. You won’t see me pursuing distressed, colored or light wash jeans unless I’m feeling super flush, because a good dark wash or black pair can be worn with any outfit, making the cost per wear much more compelling.
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Dynamiteclothing.com, KATE HIGH RISE MEDIUM WASH SKINNY JEANS, $49.95
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Joefresh.com, BLACK LOW RISE JEGGING, $34

3. Layer Obsessively

I must have 30 white t-shirts. Some loose, some tight, some thick, some thin. I’m the goldilocks of white tees. You’d think I’d be rolling around in white t’s and jeans all the time but that’s actually not the case! I layer with tshirts to add warmth to thin knits, over camisoles and with thicker sweaters. While I have eighty million, I’d say about 90% of those tshirts were accumulated while finding my perfect white tshirt. No link here, just head to Dynamite and shop their basics section!
I hope this gives you some ideas (and online shopping guilty pleasure) to update your wardrobe to stay cosy, stylish and happy this fall without breaking the bank. Let me know how you’re updating your wardrobe this year!

Favorite Fall Nail Colors

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Hello!

Today I wanted to talk about how I update my manicure for fall. Generally, I just can’t do seasonal dressing because I find it incredibly expensive, so my clothes are just varying weights of the same things. I wear mostly neutrals, a ton of black and the occasional hit of blush pink (is this officially a neutral yet?). This helps me keep my wardrobe classic and easy to mix and match, which helps when you don’t have a ton of money to create specific “outfits” with individual pieces. Plus, I can basically get dressed in the dark, which for about 10 months of the year it is dark as dark can get outside when I’m getting ready for work.
Because of this extremely neutral, somewhat basic (but in a good way!) wardrobe I have, I like to add seasonality with accessories, outerwear and my mani-pedi! I love dark, dark colors for fall and winter but I also appreciate more muted neutrals and dustier colors when I’m not feeling the dark.So without further ado, here are my favorite fall nail polishes:
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I love this shade because it’s a pinky-nude that isn’t too pale for the fall and winter, but not so dark that it’s distracting. This is my go-to shade for when I need something that will be appropriate no matter what, from work to an event.
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This shade is a go-to for me for fall because I love a true pink, but anything too bright looks off to me in the fall and winter. This muted shade is perfect for getting that hit of pink
Essie Devil’s Advocate (Dupe: OPI Linkin Park After Dark)
Here we are with a couple of dark colors. Essie Devil’s Advocate is my favorite because it is incredibly affordable, but currently it is sold out. An awesome dupe is OPI Linkin Park After Dark, but be ready to shell out a few more dollars for the bottle.
I hope this gives you a couple of ideas for fall nail polishes that are a bit different, and also a bit cliche! What are your favorite colors for fall?

Easy Marinara

20160819_170842Hello!

Tomatoes are easily one of my favorite things! I love fresh tomatoes, canned tomatoes, tomato salads, soups and sauces! Recently uncooked tomatoes have been giving me some sort of weird heartburn, so I have been cooking my tomatoes in different ways so I still get my “fix”. Since I also love pasta, an easy roasted tomato marinara seemed like just what I needed to make.

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This is a super affordable post which is surprising given that we’re using ten fresh tomatoes, and while you can definitely buy cans of tomato sauce for cheaper, but honestly this was so delicious that it felt fully worth the extra money. I also used a can of tomato sauce to make my roasted tomatoes go further so keep that option in mind as well!

Roasted Tomato Marinara and Spaghetti

$0.92 per serving or $5.50 for six 

Ten tomatoes (five romas and 5 vine ripened) – $2.93

680ml Tomato Sauce -$1

1/2 an onion- $0.40

1 package (900 gr) of spaghetti – $1.17

Pantry: 2 parmesan rind pieces, 3 garlic cloves, dried basil, dried Italian seasoning, crushed red chili flakes, balsamic vinegar, 1 rosemary sprig or dried rosemary

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The first step of this is to set your oven to preheat to 415 degrees on bake. Then wash all of your tomatoes and cut them in half.Take your half onion and rough chop it, as well as lightly smash your garlic cloves and/or cut them in half/quarters. I oiled my pan with olive oil to help keep my tomatoes from sticking.

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Next, roast your tomatoes until they get soft and caramelized (mine took 20 minutes). Pull them out and let them cool until you can handle them to peel the skin off as best you can, depositing the flesh into a blender along with the roasted and onions. Blend the tomatoes, garlic and onions until smooth, then pour the mixture into a sauce pot along with one tin of general purpose tomato sauce. Add in 1-2 Parmesan rind pieces (depending on their size) and a sprig of rosemary. Simmer this mixture for 45 minutes.

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Once you’ve simmered away for 45 minutes, remove your rosemary sprig and Parmesan rinds and make your spaghetti! I dished up my plate with a healthy amount of grated Parmesan as well.

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How to: Make Chicken Stock

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Hey guys!

I wanted to do a quick post about how I make my chicken stock for zero dollars! This sounds crazy, I know, but I take rotisserie chicken carcasses from family members and friends, herbs from mine and my mum’s herb gardens, the ends of my veggies (I freeze them when I chop them up) and regular pantry staples. Even if you don’t have access to free chicken carcasses or herbs, keep in mind that chicken carcasses are food waste you’d throw out otherwise. A rotisserie chicken is often cheaper than a roaster chicken! Not only do you get 4 meals (or so) from it, you can make stock which can be the base of other meals as well.

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I like to make my stock in my crock pot. I love that I can turn it on and (mostly) forget about it. I put it on high for 4-6 hours after I get home from work, using a thawed chicken carcass (usually I pop them in the freezer until I’m ready to make stock) in my 6 quart slow cooker from Hamilton Beach. I add thyme, sage, bay leaf, salt, red peppers, whole peppercorns, garlic, rosemary and carrots, asparagus ends, leeks, and onions. Once it has cooked for 4-6 hours and tastes great, to save space I try to reduce the stock by half. This takes time but is worth it if you don’t have a ton of freezer room.

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Once you have reduced your stock, you’ll want to cool it down quite quickly to get it into the fridge. I usually start by half filling my sink with water and a whole tray of ice, then setting the pot in there. I think you’ll be surprised how fast the ice melts! I then drain the water and refill the sink repeatedly until the sink water no longer rapidly rises in temperature, the side of the pot is cool to the touch and the stock isn’t steaming. Then, ladle it into freezer safe containers and pop them into the fridge without their lids on for a couple of hours or overnight. Once they’re fridge cold, pop the lids on an put them in the freezer until you need some stock!

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I hope this gives you an idea of how to make easy chicken stock for very little money! Save those chicken carcasses and veggie bits and you are well on your way.

 

Have a great day!