Pineapples + Stripes

Stripes + Pineapples - DC Girl in Pearls

Top: J.Crew Engineered Stripe Boatneck Tee // Skirt: J.Crew Factory Printed Cotton Sateen Mini // Tote: L.L. Bean Leather Handle Boat and Tote Bag II // Shoes: Keds White Champion Oxford Shoes // Jewelry: J.Crew Factory Layered Circle Necklace (NOW 50% OFF!!!) //  Mani: Essie – Eternal Optimist // Lipstick: Estee Lauder Pure Color Long Lasting Lipstick – Candy Shimmer 

Lately, I’ve been on a bit of a pineapple kick. I think it all started back last spring when I flew to Phoenix to spend Easter with my family, I was so excited to spend some in the dry heat and see palm trees! For a Northeast girl, palm trees only mean one thing: wonderfully warm weather. While I was in Arizona, I got a real kick over these palm trees that looked like giant pineapples. So much of a kick that I had my mom drive around so I could get a good shot of my new favorite tree. But c’mon, how can you not smile just looking at this palm?!

My pineapple mania progressed last month when I spotted a wooden pineapple lamp at a thrift shop for only four dollars. I took it home with me and really need to get around to painting it so the lamp can have a new home on my nightstand.

And now my pineapple love has expanded to my closet.

Remember my first foray into mixing prints? Mixing prints is still unchartered territory for me. But with neutral navy in this J.Crew stripe tee matching the pineapple skirt, I think we can make it work. I added my circle necklace for some sparkle because Sunday and white Keds balance it all out. I gotta say, it’s pretty refreshing to wear sneakers again and not just when I workout (HA – I’ve got jokes).

Expect to see more pineapples around here soon! After all, pineapples are a sign of hospitality.

Are you pro or anti mixed prints? Do you have a favorite combo?

Stripes + Pineapples - DC Girl in Pearls

Stripes + Pineapples - DC Girl in Pearls

Stripes + Pineapples - DC Girl in Pearls

Stripes + Pineapples - DC Girl in Pearls

Stripes + Pineapples - DC Girl in Pearls

Stripes + Pineapples - DC Girl in Pearls

Photos by Ashlyn of Let It Be Beautiful 

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IKEA Decor Under $50

I remember when I was in about the fourth grade and my mother, whose ears fell deaf to my protests about truancy, pulled me out of school for a weekend road trip to Toronto for an education conference. Along the way, we stopped at an IKEA and I had the best time wandering the maze and checking out all the cool gadgets in the bins. I walked out with a funky star lamp and the heart shaped pillow with arms. I was in total heaven, worries of missing classes completely forgotten.

IKEA reentered my life in college as the premier destination for dorm decor but post-college, my relationship with IKEA has gotten pret-tay serious. Every couple of months, I get a pining for that glorious mecca. IKEA is a veritable treasure trove for home decor that looks polished yet is affordable….can you tell it’s almost time for an IKEA run? Just a little bit?

Here are my favorite IKEA decor finds that’ll ring up at a grand total of $50! It turns out, you can buy happiness after all.

Ikea Decor Under $50 - DC Girl in Pearls

(From Top Left, Clockwise) 

Korken Jar // Skurar Plant Pot // Knubbig Table Lamp // Tejn Faux Sheepskin // Smanate Cushion // Succulent // Kassett Box // Virserum Frame

Some Decor Ideas

Korken Jar: Korken has found its home in my kitchen on a shelf. I store barley, farfalle pasta and, if we’re being totally honest, rainbow sprinkles in these jars. You could also use a Korken jar in the bathroom for cotton puffs and Q-Tips.  

Skurar Plant Pot + Succulent: The succulents are thriving on my bedroom windowsill and are seriously the most low-maintenance plants on the face of the Earth. Armed with spray paint and painter’s tape, you could give this plant pot a dip-dye look. Hello, new weekend project!

Tejn Faux Sheepskin: While it’s wonderful to have this warm, soft sheepskin as a rug, I like the idea of attaching it to the wall as a quirky addition to a gallery wall. It’d look killer next to gilded faux taxidermy. Side note: am I crazy to be getting attached to this unicorn taxidermy? Be honest!

Kassett Box: In a teeny apartment, these boxes are a storage lifesaver. Papers, blog stuff, extra purses and shoes, they all are neatly sorted into Kassett boxes. Plus, they take minutes to assemble!

Virserum Frame: For my DC gallery wall, I used all Virserum frames. They look like a million bucks without the hefty price tag: I have the white frames but I love the golden, aged look of this one. You could create a gallery wall of just the gold Virserum frames, remove the matting and don’t hang any photos in them. I think it’d be a subtle chic look. Or MAYBE you could mount the unicorn faux taxidermy inside the empty gold Virserum frame…please tell me if you think this is a good idea or if I’ve lost my marbles.

Hopefully, I’ll pay good ol’ IKEA in a few weeks and will be back with some IKEA hacks for you all! In the mean time, check out this post on IKEA DIYs!

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9-5 Polka Dots

J.Crew Polka Dot Popover - DC Girl in Pearls

Top: J.Crew Factory Polka Dot Popover (similar: Gap Polka Dot Oxford Shirt) // Skirt: J.Crew Factory Pencil Skirt in Double-Serge Wool // Belt: J.Crew Square-Buckle Belt (30% off with code PICKASALE) // Jewelry: Baublebar (old, similar: Baublebar Arabian Nights) // Shoes: Anne Klein Opalize Ankle Strap Heels // Mani: Essie: Eternal Optimist // Lipstick: Estee Lauder Pure Color Long Lasting Lipstick: Candy Shimmer

It’s Monday!! Got your coffee, tea, PSL handy? Okay, let’s get down to business, guys.

Elle Woods may have felt like white open-toed shoes after Labor Day in her first week in DC but with last week’s heatwave, my black open-toed Anne Klein heels fit right in. Finding a balance between workwear appropriate and 20-something style (read: not stuffy or boring) is a delicate tightrope walk. Luckily, patterns like polka dots and stripes save the day for my office wardrobe on a regular basis. I’m a fan of most patterns, with the exception of paisley. It just looks like the amoebas you had to look for under a microscope in high school biology. And to quote Elle, “As sure as I’m sure that nobody looks good in paisley.” Polka dots, on the other hand, are in common closet rotation. Hey Anne Klein Polka Dot Ponte Flare Dress, I’m a-comin’ for ya.

Before I forget, I want to kick around an idea for a series and I’d love to get your opinion on how I should go about it. The idea is to take a piece of clothing and show how to style it for work and then again on the weekend. Would you want to see these outfits as one long blog post? Or would you want me to break it up over two posts (i.e. a work wear post one day, the next the casual look)? Let me know what you think!

My polka dot oxford shirt might be my first in the series. Now, just need to come up with a clever name….

9-5 Polka Dot - DC Girl in Pearls Life + Style Blog

9-5 Polka Dot - DC Girl in Pearls Life + Style Blog

9-5 Polka Dot - DC Girl in Pearls Life + Style Blog

9-5 Polka Dot - DC Girl in Pearls Life + Style Blog

9-5 Polka Dot - DC Girl in Pearls Life + Style Blog

Photos by Dana of Something Good

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Fall 2014 Style Guide

DC weather and I are in a miscommunication slump right now. It seems like we just cannot get on the same page. Last Thursday, I broke out my layers for fall and bundled up. Walking to my apartment after work, I ended up as a sweaty mess who lunged for my air conditioner as soon as I walked through the door. It was in the 70s and my cardigan, jacket and scarf were just too much. So the next day, I wore my scallop dress and Jacks, only this time instead of perspiration, I was wrapping my lightweight scarf as tightly around me as I could to stop myself from shivering. Needless to say, my weather calibration is a wee bit off and I just need to strike the right balance.

I have most of my fall basics covered but I am on the hunt for riding boots to replace my pair that have finally gone to that big Shoe Sale In The Sky. I’ve also decided this will be the fall I get reacquainted with denim. I’ve said before that I was a bit of a chubster in high school and to be honest, it wasn’t really until I no longer had a college meal plan and started to learn to cook that I slimmed down. At the tender age of 16, up to my chubby cherub cheeks with self-doubt, I was told that jeans and pants in general “did nothing for me” and “made my thighs look bigger.” I took this to mean my thighs were the size of tree trunks and since then, I have rarely worn pants. LOFT’s extra thick leggings and J.Crew’s Minnie pants were the only exceptions to my pants-paranoia. Jeans seemed totally out of the question. But I’m now older and wiser and I think Gap’s boyfriend jeans could be a winning ticket paired with chunky heels and a navy blazer for a night out.

This fall, I’ll be relying on the usual suspects in my closet like chambray and navy tops and white button downs. They’ll be the supporting roles, the real stars I think will be the leopard spot accents and cozy plaids. Perhaps there’s a way to mix these two prints without sending my matchy-matchy OCD self into a frenzy?! I mean, I mixed lace and stripes and lived to tell the tale. I think I’ll play around and report back. Deal? Deal.

The big thing in this lookbook I’m drooling over? The TOMS suede wedge booties. Each season, I’ve made big goo-goo eyes at the J.Crew desert wedge booties but my bank account has kept our love from igniting. Romeo + Juliet, Me + Desert Wedge Booties. Great star-crossed lovers. This TOMS version is just as adorable and MUCH more budget-friendly. Maybe instead of chunky heels, I could pair my hypothetical boyfriend jeans with my hypothetical booties. A girl can dream, right?

Fall Style Guide

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Thirsty Thursday: Hot Pumpkin Spice Tequila

Hot Pumpkin Spice Tequila with Sauza Tequila - DC Girl in Pearls

Oh, you thought tequila was just for summer + margaritas at a rooftop bar or your favorite Mexican cantina? I’ve got a breaking news flash for ya.

It’s officially fall so say hello to the first pumpkin spice cocktail of the season! Hot Pumpkin Spice Tequila celebrates the season + gets the job done to say the least. Now I’m not a coffee person (I’ll wait for you to pick your jaws up from the floor).

I just don’t like the taste. It’s too bitter for me. But I love the smell of coffee, I remember going with my mom to our village’s gourmet coffee shop for hostess gifts and while I was waiting for her to order, I would go down the rows coffee beans. I loved lifting the lid of each coffee jar and deeply inhaling the sweet, fragrant aromas. Snickerdoodle will always have a distinct, happy memory in my mind.

For you fall lovers + coffee drinkers, listen up because this cocktail is custom built just for YOU! You lucky so and so, you.

Ingredients

1 ½ parts Sauza® Blue Silver 100% Agave Tequila

½ part Torani® Pumpkin Spice Syrup

3 parts cream

1 part sugar

½ tsp. vanilla extract

¼ tsp. cinnamon

¼ tsp. pumpkin pie spice

6 parts freshly brewed hot coffee

Whipped Cream and additional cinnamon (for garnish)

Directions

In a saucepan, combine cream with pumpkin syrup, sugar, vanilla, spices and coffee until hot. Pour into mug, add Sauza® Blue Silver and stir. Top with whipped cream and cinnamon.

Cheers!!

Mix + Match

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This post was sponsored by Sauza Tequila®.  All opinions and product sentiments are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that make DC Girl in Pearls possible!

Sauza Logo

Layers + Tassels

Layering J.Crew Scalloped Shift Dress for Work - DC Girl in PearlsDress: J.Crew Factory Scalloped Shift Dress // Top: J.Crew Factory Short Sleeve Oxford Popover (similar – Gap Fitted Boyfriend Shirt 50% OFF!!) // Jewelry: Loren Hope Zoe Bow Cuff + Loren Hope Elva Tassel Necklace (currently unavailable, similar – Kendra Scott Rayne Necklace) // Sunglasses: Ray-Ban Original Wayfarer // Shoes: Sole Society (sold out – LOVE these Sole Society Kristi flats)

Casual Fridays can be a tricky obstacle to cross. You still want to look professional but you don’t want to forsake a day to showcase your personality and break free from your usual 9-5 look.

Unless it’s cardigans or button downs, I rarely buy the same exact item in different colors. But for J.Crew Scalloped Shift Dress, it just had to be done. It just had to. Dresses are my favorite piece to wear on those mornings when you’d rather hit snooze three times than wash + dry your hair and assemble a cute outfit. On those mornings, I rely on my scalloped shift dress and a simple bun or, if I have some extra time miraculously, I curl the ends of my hair like in the above photo.

My shift dress got a lot o’ mileage in the summer as you can imagine but I’m not ready to part ways and toss it into a space bag under my bed just yet. The stripe popover adds a layer of warmth, gives a casual vibe to a work dress as well as a fall transitional feel. Slip into a pair of flats and add a couple statement pieces like my favorite Loren Hope Zoe bow cuff and Elva tassel necklace. You’ll be out the door in a flash! Don’t forget a jacket, it’s officially fall.

Layering J.Crew Scalloped Shift Dress for Work - DC Girl in Pearls

JCrew-Scalloped-Shift-Dress-3

Layering J.Crew Scalloped Shift Dress for Work - DC Girl in Pearls

Layering J.Crew Scalloped Shift Dress for Work - DC Girl in Pearls

So I’ve been sitting on this idea for awhile. It takes at least a hundred different shots for me to whittle it down to 5-7 photos to post on this little ol’ blog. Which means there are a ton of silly, unattractive outfit photos lying around.

Growing up in middle and high school, I was chubby and dreaded dreaded dreaded having my picture taken. I would see the picture and focus on the shadow of a double chin, my chubby cheeks, my thighs. I hated it. I majorly lacked self-confidence and didn’t think of myself as pretty. I still feel a residual butterfly or two in my stomach in the moment before I look at a photo of myself.

I used to hide photos that I thought were unflattering but now I’m just going to embrace them. I don’t have to look like a model in every photo because guess what, I’m not a model. I’m silly and I feel awkward in front of a camera. Together, we’re going to get through this. I’m going to post one outtake photo in each outfit post and I hope you get a laugh out of ‘em!

Without further ado… #CantRetouchThis!

Layering J.Crew Scalloped Shift Dress for Work - DC Girl in Pearls

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First Day of Fall Style

J.Crew Factory Quilted Puffer Vest - DC Girl in PearlsOuterwear: J.Crew Factory Quilted Puffer Vest // Top: J.Crew Gingham Button Down // Skirt: J.Crew Factory Pleated Mini // Shoes: Sperry Topsider Authentic Original Boat Shoe // Necklace: J.Crew Factory Layered Circle Necklace //  Sunglasses: Ray Ban Aviator Sunglasses // Bag: L.L. Bean Leather Handle Boat and Tote // Mani: Essie Eternal Optimist 

Hold on to your PSLs kids because fall is here! And by here, I don’t mean DC in the least bit possible. Not pictured above? Me ordering my pores NOT to sweat as we took these photos. In case you’re wondering, they didn’t listen. Also not pictured? Me chugging a Diet Coke between takes because it was surface-of-the-sun hot. Blogging is super glamorous, guys.

But it’s fall for the rest of the country and I’ve listened jealously to my family and friends in New York describe their cool 60s temperature with me kinda weirdly ask them to go into details about the weather (“Now tell me again what the humidity was…”). So I am sweating my way through this outfit right now that will be perfect for a weekend brunch or jaunt through the city in about 3-4 weeks. Off to the farmer’s market? Check. Meeting with friends for a mid-day Sunday Funday drink? Double check. This outfit does it all.

I lived in a variation of this outfit all last winter with a grey wool pleated mini and my Land’s End puffer vest. Land’s End outerwear sizes pretty big, mine is a kid’s large found (WARNING: Mortifying old blog post ahead) found right here.

But I liked adding more color to my fall wardrobe. Who says maroons + browns have to rule the school from September through November? Nope, pink + navy can join the party, too. If you’re worried about adding another color into the mix, the ivory J.Crew Factory quilted puffer vest is a must-have fall neutral for you colorfully confident ladies.

How excited am I about intro’ing more colors into my fall closet? It calls for JAZZ HANDS, people. That happened. And in public. I regret nothing.

I worked for four years at a summer day camp, any shred of dignity has been gone since 2008.

P.S. Keep scrolling for my fall wish list!

J.Crew Factory Quilted Puffer Vest - DC Girl in Pearls

J.Crew Factory Quilted Puffer Vest - DC Girl in Pearls

J.Crew Factory Quilted Puffer Vest - DC Girl in Pearls

J.Crew Factory Quilted Puffer Vest - DC Girl in Pearls

J.Crew Factory Quilted Puffer Vest - DC Girl in Pearls

J.Crew Factory Quilted Puffer Vest - DC Girl in Pearls

Photos by Dana of Something Good

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Monogram Monday: Shop Dandy Monogrammed Fleece Throw

Fall officially starts tomorrow! Which means the beginning of evenings spent reading books cuddled under a cozy blanket, wrapping your hands around warm mugs of hot chocolate or my favorite chai tea, wearing as much plaid as humanly possible and being mistaken for a lumberjack/jane, and embracing thick socks.

I’ve fallen off the reading wagon, I’m sad to say. Don’t get me wrong, I read constantly but lately it’s been mostly about WordPress, web design and blogging in general. Which reminds me, if you know of a stellar SEO for beginners book, please send the title my way!

I graduated from college two years ago but fall always ramps up my feelings of nostalgia for that “going back to school” excitement. In high school, I loved my English classes most of all. I’m probably one of the few people who actually enjoyed taking the AP Literature and Language exams. Locating and analyzing imagery, extended metaphors and symbolism felt like a puzzle, a mystery waiting to be solved. I was a literary Nancy Drew.

This fall, I am vowing to dig up my old high school reading list books and get back to cracking the case…literally. God, I love puns. If you need to find me this fall, I’ll be curled up on my love seat with a mug of chai tea in one hand and a good book in the other. And for good measure, I’ve got my handy dandy fleece throw for extra warmth. Though to be honest, I think my throw might throw a wrench into my reading plans because after about 15 minutes of snuggling under that bad boy, I suddenly wake up and it’s been 2 hours. Every. Single. Time.

Shop Dandy Monogrammed Beige Fleece Throw - DC Girl in Pearls

 

Shop Dandy Monogrammed Fleece Throw 

In case you’re wondering, the first couple of books on my list are (in no order): Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, Rip Van Winkle + The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving. I can’t help it, I’m excited for Halloween and I love a good ghost story! Even if I then stay awake listening to bumps in the night. Thank goodness for my fleece throw and its amazing sleep-inducing talents.

Any high school reading books you’d like to revisit? And any SEO book recs? Please + thank you!

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Union Kitchen

Union Kitchen - DC Girl in PearlsLast week, I was invited to check out the inner workings of Union Kitchen. I’d heard of Union Kitchen before from Twitter and from several DC food favorites of mine: District DoughnutTaKorean + Curbside Cupcakes. So I jumped at the chance to go into the belly of the beast, so to speak.

Union Kitchen - DC Girl in Pearls^ I could probably fit into that pot. No joke.

A short walk from Union Station, DC’s “food incubator” is actually the former home of a catering business! But I’m getting ahead of myself. Union Kitchen began as the brainchild of Jonas Singer and Cullen Gilchrist, who wanted to create a community space for local entrepreneurs to grow their businesses. The sense of community is obvious from the moment you step into the warehouse. From my tour of the kitchens, the food incubator was a-buzz with people chopping, stirring and mixing all while chatting despite it getting late into the evening! I know I’d be one sleepy kid but I didn’t see a single yawn. Or maybe they waited until I was taking pictures. Sneaky sneaky.

Most telling about Union Kitchen though was when one cook poked his head into another kitchen space to ask if they could use their sugar.Which,of course, got an immediate green light from the sugar owner. I had to giggle internally, thinking of the whole “Hey neighbor, can I borrow a cup of sugar?” bit.

All for one and one for all seems to be the unofficial motto of the warehouse so it’s no surprise that Union Kitchen has had several small businesses succeed and blossom beyond their kitchen walls.

The creativity and positive energy was addicting and I left Union Kitchen practically buzzing with creative energy. I actually started writing my Dreams + Plans post immediately when I got home. You guys, I’m kinda hooked. But it’s okay once you see the awesome foodporn below. You’ll get it.

Let’s chat about the awesome entrepreneurs + their mouth-watering treats! Seriously, I think if I worked there, I’d have to go to the gym religiously. Because I would eat everything!! My willpower is practically nonexistent when faced with these delectable culinary bites:

Popcorn Queens

Union Kitchen - DC Girl in PearlsRemember eating CrackerJax growing up? How excited you were to eat the salty peanuts and sweet, caramel popcorn to get to the treasure at the bottom? Well, Popcorn Queens Classic Peanut is like that except the treasure is the popcorn itself!

Popcorn Queens began as a mother-daughter catering small business. On a whim, they created small bags of popcorn to give to guests as a gift bag and the next day, the phone was ringing with people wanting to know where to get their hands on more popcorn! Voila!

My mouth began to water watching them mix their Classic Peanut. And your mouth is going to start watering in 3…2…1…

Union Kitchen - DC Girl in PearlsHoly sweet caramel mixture, Batman!! If I could have licked the bowl, I think I could officially declare I’ve lived a happy and fulfilled life. Watching the caramel get mixed into the popcorn was sweet, sweet torture. I could have melted right on the spot and gone to dessert heaven. But there is more to see so let’s keep the show moving.

Okay, just one more. Le sigh.

Union Kitchen - DC Girl in Pearls

The Capital Candy Jar

Union Kitchen - DC Girl in Pearls

Because I might be a masochist with a major sweet tooth, up next on the tour is the Capital Candy Jar. Get this: their founder Dave got his first sweet taste (see what I did there?) of entrepreneurship growing up when, trying to make a few extra bucks, he started up a lollipop business at school! Boy, I thought I was a rebel (shifty eye Emoji here).  

After moving to DC, he decided to take the plunge and became a full-time confectioner. Made in small batches, Capital Candy Jar’s treats are candy for grownups. I had the opportunity to sample their pineapple divinity (aptly named) and do a tasting for a confection fresh from the test kitchen: caramel apple marshmallow. 

Aside from mini-marshmallows in my hot chocolate, I’d never been big on marshmallows. I know this is blasphemy to some but I could take ‘em or leave ‘em. But now…

* Cue music playing “A Whole New World” * 

My eyes have been OPENED and I am never buying another bag of JetPuffed marshmallows. JetPuffed and I are never ever ever getting back together. These caramel apple marshmallows were out of this world delicious. Soft with just the right amount of chewiness, you tasted the apple flavor immediately and then slowly the smooth caramel joined the party. And it was totally AWESOME! 

Union Kitchen - DC Girl in Pearls

Union Kitchen - DC Girl in Pearls

Okay, before we all collapse of a sugar rush, we’re going to take a quick break and play a game of fun facts about Union Kitchen. 

About 20-30 DC small businesses apply to work with Union Kitchen every week. They have to present their business plan to Union Kitchen board members and meet certain criteria to get a thumbs up. But what if they’re a one or two person shop that doesn’t have all the nitty-gritty details quite figured out? No sweat, as long as they show promise and passion, they’re in.

I treat DC Girl in Pearls like a small business so I understand how time-consuming managing the little details can be, it can sometimes feel like you’re climbing up a mountain with no end in sight. Union Kitchen provides support for its community members with market + new media consulting among other perks. The whole community emphasis I mentioned earlier? That’s a rallying cry for members from Day 1. And new members go through an extensive orientation before they can get down to business (to defeat the Huns – I had to). 

So what if you’re a small business in DC but you aren’t working in food? Like at all? Your business is still kosher with Union Kitchen! They also house members such as Cherry Blossom Creative, whose prints I instantly recognized from Eastern Market as soon as I walked in. I loved her space and didn’t really want to leave if we’re being totally 100% honest. It was colorful and inspirational! 

Hmm here’s a thought for you lovely readers: remember when I mentioned my dream of growing DC Girl and finding a space to teach classes? Maybe Union Kitchen could be that spot! Just a thought but let me know what you think. 

Another non-foodie who calls Union Kitchen home is a small PR firm Mirepoix Media. 

Union Kitchen - DC Girl in Pearls

Okay, I think our foodporn palate is cleansed and ready for the final leg of this culinary tour. So without further ado..

PureJoy

Union Kitchen - DC Girl in Pearls

PureJoy got its start when two dads and an uncle teamed up to create healthy, locally sourced baby food for those bundles of joy. What they discovered was the joy of cooking!

I’m sure you’re probably staring at the screen thinking, “Really, Lauren? Baby food? I’m not a parent!” But just hear me out. I don’t think I’ve tried baby food since was in diapers so I wasn’t sure what to expect. But I was blown away. Those babies eating PureJoy eat more healthfully than I do, I have no doubt about that. I sampled the sweet ginger and morning porridge and was instantly jealous of babies. I normally don’t gravitate towards porridge because of texture issues of mine but I will happily make an exception for PureJoy. Oh and they are looking into creating babyfood for adults! I nominate adding some bourbon to the sweet ginger and I’ll be a happy camper.

What really impressed me though about PureJoy were a) their commitment to charity and b) their upbeat attitudes.

PureJoy donates a portion of their babyfood to Martha’s Table, a DC nonprofit that offers high quality day care for low income families. PureJoy is democratizing healthy eating habits for kids one delicious spoonful at a time!

And their attitudes. PureJoy was the last stop of my tour and at that point, I’d been running around all day and was ready to hit the hay. Not these guys, they were cooking up a storm but kindly took a quick break to chat about their company. I wish I had that kind of energy at 10pm. Maybe the secret is bottled into that baby food…

Union Kitchen - DC Girl in Pearls

I had a wonderful time visiting Union Kitchen. Like I said, I left the food incubator infused with energy and creativity. The energy might have been the caramel apple marshmallow talking but the creativity was 100% Union Kitchen derived. If you are a small business in DC looking to get a leg up, I’d highly recommend reaching out to the folks at Union Kitchen.

Thanks, Aidan for the fantastic visit!

I hope you enjoyed the foodporn tour and I’m excited to feature more DC small businesses on DC Girl soon!

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Thirsty Thursday: Sauza Tequila Strawberry Sparklers

Sauza Tequila Strawberry Sparklers - DC Girl in Pearls

It’s a double shot at cocktails with Sauza Tequila (get it?!) this week on DC Girl. I hope you were able to put the margs + guac recipes to good use on Tuesday for National Guacamole Day! Or you bookmarked the page for future reference, I have an entire bookmark folder in my Google Chrome dedicated solely to my love of eating. With a subfolder for cocktails. I think I have my priorities in order on that one.

I love a good champagne cocktail but never thought of adding tequila into that equation. Perhaps because in my mind, Tequila is a stand-alone liquor who almost exclusively dates Margarita mixes, which might involve a side of nachos. And if you live in DC, an order of the Bob Armstrong dip from Tortilla Coast (life changing).

Move over, Margarita because there’s a new woman in Tequila’s life: Champagne. And it’s bringing its A-game with this Sauza Tequila Strawberry Sparkler.

The vibrant red of this cocktail is awesome and I’m already looking for parties and get togethers to throw this drink into the mix: perhaps I’ll take a leaf out of Leslie Knope’s playbook and host a Galentine’s Day. But why wait that long? I could serve this cocktail at my birthday in two months. With my favorite parts of cocktails (champagne, strawberries + tequila) joining forces, I’ll find any excuse to whip this up. Just you wait!

Ingredients

1 part Sauza® Blue Silver 100% Agave Tequila

½ part DeKuyper® Strawberry Liqueur

½ part (chilled) rose champagne

½ part limeade

3 strawberries

1 tbsp. sugar

1 lime wedge

Directions

Wash, stem, quarter and freeze strawberries for at least 1 hour (can be done the day ahead). Run a wedge of lime around the rim of your champagne flute and dip in a plate of sugar to coat rim. Place 3 frozen strawberries in the bottom of the prepared flute.  Pour champagne into the glass. In a shaker filled with ice, combine tequila, limeade, and strawberry liqueur. Shake and pour into glass. Add a squeeze of fresh lime if desired and serve immediately.

Mix + Match

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This post was sponsored by Sauza Tequila®.  All opinions and product sentiments are my own. 

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