Minted x DC

Gold Foil Pressed Map of Washington, DC on Minted.com | dcgirlinpearls.com

Remember that time I broke down my tips for building a gallery wall? Well, I need to add another fantastic source for prints + pieces: Minted.

When I first stumbled upon this site thanks to an ad from the Book of Faces, I immediately started bookmarking almost every print under my “Home Decor” folder on my Chrome because I wanted/needed/had to have all of them. Minted offers a section called “Art Marketplace,” which brings all types of incredible art prints from landscapes to foil pressed and abstract under one roof and lets you customize by budget. And it even gives you the option to frame your print for a pretty reasonable price. Seriously reasonable. IKEA is a great place for frames (Virserum is my go-to because it looks so much more expensive than it actually is) but if you just want to eliminate the wait-time for framing, Minted’s framing services are well within your budget for prints. Promise.

In my living area, I’ve accumulated a DC-centric gallery wall that includes a painting of the Washington monument painted by yours truly post-couple glasses of wine and my mom’s old license plate when she worked in DC. Thanks to Minted, I’ve added a couple more DC prints that I’ve been obsessed with since my original bookmarking spree. But this foil-stamped Washington DC map is truly a thing of beauty (and was very much worth the extra framing cost) that will be a killer focal point for my little ol’ wall. In a total 180, my second favorite print is a minimalist piece of the DC skyline. Safe to say, I’m kinda hooked.

And with wedding season in full swing, Minted also has a pretty swanky selection of wedding invitations (that are practically worthy of being framed themselves). Picking favorites is pretty much impossible but I do have a soft spot for this classic floral and this twinkly lights in the trees invite. I’m nowhere close to getting married but I love these invitations so much I’m kinda tempted to get them. How would you feel about getting a schnazzy invitation in the mail to a Tuesday wine + Netflix night? Any takers?

 

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Photo by Caroline

Strawberry Blackberry Mojito

Blackberry + Strawberry Mojitos | dcgirlinpearls.com

In college, my favorite “cocktail” to make at home involved citrus-flavored vodka and pink lemonade with a slice of lime. Because, you know, that slice of lime made my drink oh so fancy-schmancy. I’d like to think my tastes + skills have evolved over the years when it comes to cocktails. Simple with five ingredients or less is still my motto for cocktails but instead of sugary pink lemonade, this sweetness in this mojito comes from fresh fruit from the market.

Right now, strawberries are where it’s at. I think I’ve probably eaten at least a bushel’s worth of strawberries by myself. Eating them whole for dinner on nights when it’s too hot to even think about turning on the stove. I even chopped them into bite size pieces and added the strawberries to the pulled chicken + pineapple-mango salsa tacos. It might be my new favorite meal, especially since I’ve had these tacos at least 4 times each week for the last 3 weeks or so.

Sorry I’m not sorry.

You know what goes great with tacos? A minty mojito.

Muddle the strawberries and blackberries at the bottom of a tall glass along with about 10 fresh mint leaves + 2 tablespoons of sugar. Add 1 shot of clear rum and a squeeze of fresh lime juice. Fill to the top with ice and top off with club soda for fizz.

Blackberry + Strawberry Mojitos | dcgirlinpearls.com

I can’t just stop there with strawberries + blackberries. How about sweet summer peach mojitos? Watermelon! Cherries!

Make the mojito in a big batch while you grill out with friends or make one just for yourself on a Tuesday. Just because.

Blackberry + Strawberry Mojitos | dcgirlinpearls.com

 

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Edible Funfetti Cookie Dough Ice Cream Sandwiches

Edible Funfetti Cookie Dough | dcgirlinpearls.com

Oh boy. I really did it this time.

The sprinkles in the pantry were just BEGGING to be baked into a cake, brownies, cookies. Sprinkling them on a scoop (okay, 3 scoops) of ice cream just wasn’t cutting it anymore.

It all started so innocent. I was just going to bake funfetti cookies and call it a day.

Sometimes, I just can’t help myself. Blame it on the heat but a lightbulb went on in my brain. What’s better than funfetti cookies?

Edible Funfetti Cookie Dough | dcgirlinpearls.com

Funfetti cookie dough.

Edible Funfetti Cookie Dough.

Edible Funfetti Cookie Dough Ice Cream Sandwiches!!!

YUP THAT HAPPENED.

When I was little and would help my mom bake, standing on a chair to reach the cabinet, my mom instilled in me that cake batter + cookie dough were unsafe to eat because of raw egg. In my 5 year old brain, I interpreted this as “Eat cookie dough or cake batter and immediately get sick.” Well, that wasn’t going to happen to me so I remained cake batter + cookie dough-free until about 6 years later when I rebelled and snuck a taste of yellow cake batter.

There are just some things you can’t un-taste and OMG yellow cake batter tasted incredible.

And edible funfetti cookie dough tastes like heaven.

Edible Funfetti Cookie Dough | dcgirlinpearls.com

Add a scoop of ice cream to frozen edible cookie dough and oh man, you’re all set.

It’s a long weekend. (Edible) dough it up!

Ingredients (Makes About 18 Cookies)

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons clear imitation vanilla extract (real vanilla extract may be substituted)
1 1/2 teaspoons almond extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
milk
3/4 cup sprinkles

Directions

Combine the butter, sugar, extracts, and beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy.

Mix in flour and milk. Add the milk 1 tablespoon at a time until the dough reaches its desired consistency.

Fold in sprinkles with a spatula.

Cover bowl tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

Enjoy!!

Edible Funfetti Cookie Dough Ice Cream Sandwiches | dcgirlinpearls.com

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Memorial Day Fruit + Cheese Jar Salads

Memorial Day Fruit + Cheese Salad Jars |dcgirlinpearls.com

Anybody else completely forget about the long weekend coming up? And the fact that swimsuit season is pretty much upon us?

I’d rather not talk about the bagels, chicken fingers + tacos I ate this weekend like a 5 year old who was left home alone. So I’m hitting the reset button and doing my best to get my fruits, veggies + lean proteins in this week. But what about the weekend? With the Memorial Day BBQs and picnics, it’s pretty easy to snack and go overboard with burgers, hot dogs + macaroni salads. Speaking from experience.

So, in the spirit of trying not to eat like a child, I wanted to come up with a healthy Memorial Day picnic snack. Of course, it had to be red, white + blue.

Memorial Day Fruit + Cheese Salad Jars |dcgirlinpearls.com

Hello, Fruit + Cheese Jar Salads!

Because honestly, I wasn’t really sure what to call these little guys…

Full disclosure: I originally wanted to have the fruit + cheese be on a skewer but the cheese didn’t take kindly to be skewered. So I had to go with a back-up plan but I think the mini-canning jar works perfectly.

Is there anything more Americana than a canning jar?

Nope. There is not.

Memorial Day Fruit + Cheese Salad Jars |dcgirlinpearls.com

Keeping the red, white + blue theme going, IZZE Sparkling Blueberry is a fun drink for the Memorial Day weekend! Just add a red stripe straw for instant-Memorial Day picnic fun.

And it’s easy on the waistline, too ; )

Though if you added some prosecco or vodka, I wouldn’t mind. It’s a long weekend, after all!

Memorial Day Fruit + Cheese Salad Jars |dcgirlinpearls.com

Oh, and my American flag koozie is hands down one of the best post-brunch Target run finds of all time!! I couldn’t find it online but here’s a pretty patriotic koozie set if you’re looking for Memorial Day party favors. It’s also never too early to stock up for 4th of July!

Memorial Day Fruit + Cheese Salad Jars |dcgirlinpearls.com

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IZZE Sparkling Juices

This post was sponsored by IZZE®.  All opinions and product sentiments are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that keep the DC Girl in Pearls party going!

Happy Hour Alert: Casper’s Snooze Bar

Casper Snooze Bar in Georgetown | dcgirlinpearls.com

What are your weekend plans?! Make sure you clear some time in your calendar this weekend because what if I told you there was a pop-up dedicated to sleeping and the snooze button?

I think because we’re friends, you’d say that sounds like nirvana.

BUT WAIT!! There’re so many awesome things happening at the Snooze Bar, I really don’t know where to start.

Actually, I do know where to start.

Let’s start with the hostess with the mostest, Casper.

Casper Snooze Bar in Georgetown | dcgirlinpearls.com

Casper is a a sleep startup that launched in New York just over a year ago with one mattress that the folks at Casper have deemed “perfect.” I don’t like to brag but I’d consider myself a sleep connoisseur and a snooze button enthusiast. And you better believe you’d have to use the Jaws of Life to pry me out of the bed above.

In my advanced age, I’ve noticed what a significant impact a solid mattress and pillows have on my physical well-being. I’m prone to neck problems and if I sleep even one night with a soft pillow, my neck pays the price and I wake up at best with a stiff neck and at worse, unable to turn my head at all. It sounds crazy but swear to you it happens.

A perfectly firm yet soft mattress with pillows that’s delivered right to my door? Umm where do I sign up?

To celebrate, Casper is taking the show on the road with the Snooze Bar. From now until the 17th, Casper’s Snooze Bar is celebrating all things slumber all day + night.

During the day, the Snooze Bar offers a coffee bar, waffle station (more on that in a sec!) and dream interpretations. I don’t know about you but I find dreams fascinating and if I remember even a snipped of a dream, I’ll Google its meaning as soon as I wake up.

By night, the Snooze Bar switches out the coffee bar to offer tasty nightcaps, including my favorite Moscow Mule. I may or may not have had 2, they were just so good!! And when it came to the waffles, I kinda sorta 100% tried every single waffle combo on the menu. Waffles for dinner is the way to go.*

* Approved by Leslie Knope

Casper Snooze Bar in Georgetown | dcgirlinpearls.com

My favorite waffle combo on the menu? That’s a tough one. For savory, I loved the jalapeño waffle with creme fraiche and cilantro. Because anything jalapeño is a home run in my book. As for sweet, the banana, maple syrup waffle with the graham cracker crumble almost made me cry it was so good. Graham crackers are seriously undervalued by society, they’re good for more than just a cheesecake crust!!

Casper Snooze Bar in Georgetown | dcgirlinpearls.com

Comfy beds, check.

Cocktails, check.

Waffles, quadruple check!!

But the BEST party about this pop-up? It’s FREE!!

Yup, that’s right. So visit Cady’s Alley in Georgetown this weekend to check out Casper + cheers to sleeping in!

Casper Snooze Bar in Georgetown | dcgirlinpearls.com

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Summer at Union Market

A Saturday at Union Market | dcgirlinpearls.com

When I lived in Glover Park, Union Market felt like a trek to the other end side of the world between the Metro and the walk from Union Station. It probably didn’t help that I made my inaugural visit to Union Market on a record-breaking summer day and felt like a walking melted Popsicle.

Since moving to the Hill, I’m now an easy walk away from the market + it’s become a fun weekend jaunt to stroll around chatting with the vendors and discovering fun (+ funky!) local goods.

To paraphrase Jessica Day, “I love the farmer’s market. I feel like Don Corleone.”

Besides being a favorite place to people-watch, Union Market has played host to several of my favorite events in DC.

So when I joined in on Eventbrite‘s “Hometown Hunt” project, where bloggers write about their hometown hidden gems, it took about 0.02 seconds for me to think of Union Market!! And funny enough, I’ve RSVP’d to most, if not all, Union Market events through Eventbrite (like the Gilt City sample sale). Serendipity, guys. 

A Saturday at Union Market | dcgirlinpearls.com

Crafty Bastards.

Nope, I’m not cursing. That’s actually the name of an arts ‘n crafts fair held in Union Market’s parking lot, I went last year with friends and believe me, it’s a hoot and a half. Grab your girlfriends and block out a few hours because I promise you you’ll be going to every single stand to check out their wares. Unique doesn’t even begin to cover it.

From Grumpy Cat night lights to a metallic gold DC flag canvas tote, Crafty Bastards has everything you didn’t know you couldn’t survive another minute without.

And in case I had you at Grumpy Cat, this year’s Crafty Bastards festival will be September 26-27th.

^ That’s a #dcgirlguide tip right there ; )

A Saturday at Union Market | dcgirlinpearls.com

And if you find yourself looking for something fun to do on a Friday, Union Market turns into a movie theater starting in June. Their “Flashback Fridays” drive-in screens 80s + 90s classics, perfect for a mellow Friday (Saturday can be another story).

Spoiler alert: Union Market Drive In is showing Space Jam on June 19th. And did I mention it’s free?!

A Saturday at Union Market | dcgirlinpearls.com

So far, we have festivals + flicks but in case you thought that was it for Union Market events, oh boy.

In the past several weeks, Union Market has hosted a variety of culinary demos like knife skills for beginners and how to shuck oysters. I circled the knife skills in my calendar but unfortunately I couldn’t go at the last minute. I was pretty bummed because I’m a big veggie girl and I wish I was speedier + safer handling a knife. I especially wish I was speedier while chopping up onions. I’ve tried every trick in the book but man, I start tearing up almost as soon as I slice into an onion.

If you went to a culinary demo at Union Market, please let me know what you thought of it! I found out about these culinary demos from the Union Market e-newsletter, you can get it in your inbox here.

See you at Union Market this weekend?

If you go to the market or really anyplace in DC and spy something cool, don’t forget to tag it with #dcgirlguide! I can’t wait to see what tips + local spots you recommend : )

So take advantage of all the hidden (usually free) gems this city has to offer!! And check out  Eventbrite, it’s a great way to find events happening in your neck of the woods.

If you’re putting on an event this summer or really anytime, Eventbrite offers free event management tools to spread the word, sell tickets + even track your event progress. Pretty schnazzy, yes?”

A Saturday at Union Market | dcgirlinpearls.com

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#dcgirlguide

Union-Market-11

Lately, I’ve been crushing on Instagram pretty hard. I downloaded the app almost immediately after I got an iPhone for my college graduation gift (Yes, I’ve had this blog longer than I’ve had a smartphone, crazy huh?) and since then, I’ve posted regularly and liked + commented on gorgeous photos that have inspired me to up my own photography game. But I didn’t really have a plan for Instagram.

Until last month.

Around that time, I had an inspiration overload for blog content and frankly, there aren’t enough days in the week. Doing a full-blown blog post 7 times each week, I know I would short-circuit and some of the content wasn’t involved enough to merit an entire post. But I still wanted to share with you all these awesome ideas!!!

Mostly involving summer cocktails.

Because priorities, guys.

And it hit me: Share ’em on Instagram!!

TL;DR I have a lot of ideas for summer adult sips + eats so join me on my Instagram party for extra “blog content.”

But wait, THERE’S MORE!!

Union Station

Sorry for all the exclamation points + all-caps, I’m just really excited about this idea + am praying you all are just as pumped about it as I am!

I sat down a few weeks ago to map out my new plan for the ‘gram (Kinda embarrassed I wrote that but moving on…) to create a feed that benefits all of us.

For a really long time, I’ve wanted to create a comprehensive DC guide. Not a guide to the monuments or other national treasures but an on-the-ground guide to the city, specifically for us young professional girls.A way we could instantly share tips, tidbits and just general good vibes about our awesome city. But DC is a big city and I can’t do it alone.

Instagram is just the way to get this party started.

Cava Grill

In the last few weeks, I’ve been tagging a few of my photos with #dcgirlguide. The idea behind the hashtag is to create a community of young professional women who want to share their own fun adventures in the city and offer some tips.

To throw out an example, let’s say you and your friends go to Cava Grill in Chinatown for dinner. You snap a photo like the one above and leave a tip about how you can get a glass of wine for $5 at Cava Grill’s HH. Tag #dcgirlguide and voila!

Or maybe you find yourself at Secondi in Dupont Circle, one of my favorite secondhand clothing shops, and they’re having a great sale. Take a photo of the awesome vintage Lilly dress you just discovered, share a tip for navigating the sale and include #dcgirlguide.

A stellar bottomless brunch deal? #dcgirlguide. Just a really stunning photo of Meridian Hill Park on a sunny Saturday? #dcgirlguide.

Basically any photo you post on Instagram that makes you feel so grateful + downright giddy to be living in such an incredible city, use #dcgirlguide.

Union-Kitchen-Grocery-7

You’d also be doing me a HUGE favor because lately, I’ve been stuck in my routine and I am jonesing to check out some new spots.

So tell your friends about #dcgirlguide and I can’t wait to see what you post!!

Who’s with me?! Anyone? Bueller?

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J. Crew Factory Sale Favorites for Work + Weekend

Phew, this weekend was a scorcher, huh? I spent about 80% of my weekend outside in the glorious sunshine, walking to Eastern Market, and playing cornhole.

The rest of the time, I was blasting my A/C and planning an entire summer’s worth of BBQ, burgers + ice cream posts for you guys. Your taste buds can thank me in advance and I apologize to your beach bod. But it’s gonna be good.

Oh, and I might have done a little retail therapy while praying to the gods of A/C…

But J. Crew Factory‘s having a blowout 60% off sale with an extra 20% off as the sweet cherry on the top. I picked up the navy jacquard top and I can already tell I’m going to get a lot of mileage out of this baby. I’m thinking with my gold Jacks + white jeans for brunch with a neon statement necklace like this one from Bauble Bar for brunch. And then underneath a blazer with a pencil skirt + wedges for my 9-5.

I’m a girl on a budget so anytime there’s a piece I can work both for work + for weekend, it’s a win-win in my book (and in my closet!).

Here are my other favorite pieces from the J. Crew Factory sale, better hurry while the getting’s good!

P.S. I scored the cork clutch from the J.Crew warehouse sale and it’s one of my favorite pieces for summer nights out on the town with friends!

J. Crew Factory Sale favorite picks for my 9-5 and weekend | dcgirlinpearls.com

Work

Navy Jacquard Top // Geometric Jacquard Skirt // Printed Flats // Crewneck Sweater 

Play 

Twisted-Back Dress // Cuff // Cork Clutch // Linen Drawstring Shorts 

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Strawberry Mimosa with a Serious Twist

Strawberry Mimosa for Brunch | dcgirlinpearls.com

I know what you’re thinking. “A strawberry mimosa for brunch? Revolutionary.” It’s right up there with “Florals for spring? Groundbreaking.”

But what looks like an ordinary, innocent strawberry mimosa is packing a serious punch, which makes it ideal for Mother’s Day Brunch.

On any given day, our mothers field countless texts and phone calls from us: begging for advice, asking for an opinion on a dress or sometimes just needing a shoulder to cry on.

Moms deserve that extra oomph and this mimosa definitely delivers the goods.

Strawberry Mimosa for Brunch | dcgirlinpearls.com

Tequila, Strawberry Liquor + Sparkling Rosé.

Yup, it’s happening. There’s no turning back now.

Grab a bite + let’s get mimosa-ing!

Oh, it’s also a verb now. Get on board.

Strawberry Mimosa for Brunch | dcgirlinpearls.com

Ingredients 

½ parts Sauza® Blue Silver 100% Agave Tequila

¼ parts DeKuyper® Strawberry Liquor

2 ½  parts (chilled) Rose Champagne

½ parts limeade

2 strawberries

1 pinch of sugar

Squeeze of lime

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 2frozen strawberries in the bottom of the flute.

Open champagne and pour glass approximately 2/3 of the way full.

In a shaker filled with ice, combine tequila, limeade, and strawberry liquor. Shake.

Add a squeeze of fresh lime if desired.

Top glass with the cocktail and serve immediately.

Strawberry Mimosa for Brunch | dcgirlinpearls.com

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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 keep the DC Girl in Pearls party going!Sauza Logo

Mother’s Day Brunch Sips

Okay, so hopefully at this point, the sombreros are packed away and you are swearing never to touch tequila again. Or at least until next Taco Tuesday.

But what I really hope for is that you’ve got your Mother’s Day gifts + cards in the mail all ready for Sunday. I really wish I was able to be home for Mother’s and Father’s Day but, sadly, it’s just not feasible. My gift + cards are already in the mail but I wish I could be home on Sunday for Mother’s Day Brunch.

Since I can’t be home to lounge around in PJs with the family as we stuff ourselves silly with crepes topped with strawberries ‘n whipped cream, I gotta do the next best thing.

Tell you about my favorite cocktails that are appropriate (ahem) delicious to serve before at 11 a.m. That woman gave birth to you and has expertly fielded countless teary phone calls and very real silly drama that you barely remember but was once the entire bane of your life. Mom needs something stronger than a mimosa.

Let’s be honest.

Oh, and if you like your morning cocktails with a side of brunch, here are my favorite Mother’s Day ideas for brunch bites!

Mother's Day Brunch Sips | dcgirlinpearls.com

Strawberry Balsamic Bourbon Smash // Grapefruit Gin // Watermelon Cucumber Cooler

Paloma // Strawberry Mojito // Blackberry Bourbon Lemonade 

Blood Orange Moscow Mules // Cocktail Emoji // Raspberry Mint Rosé Fizz

Apple Pomegranate Sangria // French 75 // Cherry Blossom Sangria

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