Monday, April 13, 2015

Lilly Pulitzer and Target Collaboration: My Favorite Picks!

If you haven't heard by now, then let me tell you: Lilly Pulitzer is doing a collaboration with Target!! What???? Yep, that means there is fun Lilly stuff at affordable prices ($2-$150!).









 
Not only is there a collection for Women, but there is a collection for the home. It features plates, napkins, glassware, umbrellas, chairs, everything for your beach party!

 Of course, I love a Lilly scarf. They have tons of them for a good price... $20. Normally they cost $120!


There is also a variety of espadrilles and sandals! How cute are the sandals with the pineapple??


 They are tons of fabulous beach totes too...




The pieces go on sale April 19... when I'm in Paris. Boo. Sooo, I probably won't be getting any of it as these colaborations usually sell out in like 2 seconds.  Unless... you want to get me something from this list.... ya know.... hint hint-iwearamedium-hint hint.  Click HERE to see the rest of the collection!!

Pictures are from Target.  I was not paid for this endorsement, I just happen to love Lilly Pulitzer!

Written at http://peoniesandorangeblossoms.blogspot.com

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Weekend Whimsy... French edition

Here with another weekend whimsy... I'll be taking a break for the next 2 weekends while I'm on vacation.

This is the French edition... sans graphics.

- Check out this beautiful wedding at a Chateau in France

- What to pack in your carry-on for long airplane flights

- The pictures on this blog from a walking tour of Paris are sooo pretty!

- Choosing a Louis Vuitton Purse

- Did you know you can rent a French chateau for pretty cheap??

- What to wear in Paris in the Spring

- OMG. you need to check out this French clothing label, Sezane. OR don't. because I promise you'll find something you'll like. So... don't check it out. your wallet thanks me.

Pastry shops in Paris I'm going to try

- Before and After pictures of a chateau reno in France!

- A very famous kitchen shop all chefs/bakers/foodies need to visit

- This blogger went to Paris for four months but then... four months turned into several years.  She has the prettiest pictures and the most beautiful instagram. Y'all need to check out her blog.

One non-French thing.... Game of Thrones starts this weekend! Who's excited?! (me!!!). Remind yourself here of what happened last season so you're ready for the season 5 premiere!

Ok, hope you enjoyed this weekend's French edition of Weekend whimsy!!

Written at http://peoniesandorangeblossoms.blogspot.com

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Upcoming Trip Plans to Paris: Tour du Patisserie



I'm headed to Paris next week on what I'm calling my "Tour du Patisserie".  I've been to Paris a few times before, so I've "been there and done that" to some of the most famous attractions.  My husband has never been, so we will be going to the Louvre and Eiffel Tower, but I have some other things in mind...

...It involves things like...

...This raspberry ispahan macaron creation from Pierre Herme... 
picture source
Eating my *favorite* French cake... Le Fraisier! It is light sponge cake with yummy mousseline creme, with strawberries sandwiched inside... topped with a thin layer of marzipan and sometimes honey. It is so light and refreshing.  My wedding cake was a frasier cake.

Fraisier Cake from Gerard Mulot, source
I want to try this rose ispahan croissant from Pierre Herme... I've read wonders about it... It is a buttery croissant glazed with rose-flavored almond cream, then drizzled with candied rose petals and filled with raspberry litchi pate.  I've read even for those rose flavored dessert haters, this is like a bite of heaven!


Or perhaps trying this caramel eclair from Cafe Pouchkine...
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 This caramel mille feuille (napoleon in English) from Hugo et Victor is mouthwatering... layers of crunchy caramelized pastry with a caramel creme in between.

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A tarte citron with a crunchy shell, smooth lemon curd, with meringue on top looks amazing from La Patisserie des Reves...
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And yes, of course, Laduree is on my list... I plan to visit more than once to try a bunch of different macaron flavors....

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Perhaps we'll enjoy a sip of Chocolat Africain (aka the world's best hot chocolate!) at Angelina's... when my family and I first went to Paris years ago, we stumbled upon this shop which was just down the street from our hotel.  We didn't find out until years later that our local little pastry shop that we'd go to in the afternoons was world-famous! Ha!
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Maybe we will try a St. Honore from Arnaud Lehrer. The St Honore is a ring of puff pastry with pastry creme, then topped with pastry puffs that are filled with creme and dipped in either chocolate or sugar...
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I've never had a Paris Brest before, but it is supposed to be like nutella in a bite.  It has praline cream layered in-between two crunchy but soft choux pastry sides with some chocolate in the center.  Patisserie des Reves is supposed to make a fabulous one...
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I love the fresh fruit tarts... this tarte framboise pistache, aka raspberry pistachio tart from Pain du Sucre is supposed to be delicious.... It has fresh raspberries with a glaze, with a pistachio cake in the center. 
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Alright, so I know, technically, that ice cream does not fall into the "patisserie" category. But I'm adding it to my "tour du patisserie" anyway.  The three flavors below are supposed to be amazing.  They are from world famous ice cream house, Berthillon, and I'm going to wait in line to try them!
Apparently the chocolat noir (dark chocolate) is amazing, but the caramel beurre sale (salted butter caramel) is to-die-for!
left, dark chocolate, right salted butter caramel source
 What I've read though, is if the fresh wild strawberry (frais de bois) is in season, it is a must try.  It is different than the regular strawberry flavor, it contains whole fresh strawberries and is apparently like no other ice cream.
fresh wild strawberry source
I also *love* croissants aux amandes (almond croissants)... even though most of them are made from day-old croissants.  This one is from Laurent Duchene, and I don't have a preference where I eat my croissants from! They are all delicious compared to the ones in America!
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But let's face it, my favorite favorite thing in Paris is just a plain ol' croissant.  I have been searching for croissants in the US that are similar to those in Paris and have only been let down.  The perfect croissant is buttery, light and airy, but crisp on the outside. It has the perfect little crunch, but then it is soft in the inside. While I usually go for the plain croissant, the pain du chocolat  (chocolate croissant) is always delicious.  The shelf life of a croissant is 4 hours. Thus, we are to only eat croissants before 10am when they are still fresh...
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Is there anything I should add to my "Tour du Patisserie" before I head off to Paris in 2 weeks??

Perhaps I need to add some pepcid and tums into my luggage, after seeing my list!  I feel like a little piggy with this list, but I've read the best souvenir from Paris is the 5 pounds of pastry weight you gain.  And as for the "diet", I heard French women don't diet, so I won't either... 

Written at http://peoniesandorangeblossoms.blogspot.com
Images are not my own.

Monday, April 6, 2015

What to Pack for Vacation in Your Carry-On

I'm headed to Paris next week and thought I would share with you essentials for your international carry-on.  


1// Noise canceling headphones - I *highly* recommend these headphones, especially for your 12 hour flights.
2// Hair brush - 12 hours is a long time for your hair to look bad, especially in the dry environment and your sleepyhead you'll get after trying to snooze sitting straight up.
3// Camera - you need to put your camera in your carry-on so it does not get lost or stolen in your checked bag.
4// Hand cream - it's really dry in the airplane. You will be wanting hand cream. Get my favorite hand cream here.
5// Lip Balm - your lips will get dry on the airplane. I recommend this one or this one
6// a Pen - you will need to fill out some customs papers at some point. Bring a pen.
7// Granola bar - this is nice to have because you never know when you'll need some sustenance.
8// Water bottle - I usually just buy one in the airport, that way if I'm desperate for space on the way home I can toss it.
9// iPad - this has everything I need... books, movies, music, and a notepad to jot down thoughts.  I read my travel books on this on the way to the location I'm headed to.
10// Keys - don't forget your house and car keys!
11// Make up bag - trust me, you'll want to do some touching on before landing. I like this one
12// Alcohol sanitizer - airplanes are full of germs. You'll feel better after using this.
13// iPhone - don't forget to bring your phone, you may get stranded and need it!
14// Ear plugs - you will wish you had these when the screaming baby or chatty cathy sit behind you on your twelve hour flight!
15// Mint gum - helps your ears pop in ascent/descent and gives you some fresh breath
16// Munchies - you will need something to munch, as I'm sure you'll either get hungry or bored. Almonds are filling but high calorie, you could get some fat-free popcorn for this too.
17// Blanket scarf - the temperature of the airplane varies too much. A blanket scarf is nice for those temperature fluctuations. I like this one or this one or this one
18// Evian water spray - nice and refreshing to spray on your face. Get it here
19// Passport and wallet - if there's one thing you *must* bring on international travel it is your passport. Otherwise you'll be stuck in No-Man's-Land with Tom Hanks.
20// Travel size perfume - you'll want to reapply just before you get off of your flight. I'm liking this one or this one
21// Travel bag - you need a bag big enough to fit all of this stuff in! I like these:  onetwo or three
22// Eye mask - you will want this for when the person next to you leaves their reading light on the whole flight
23// Toothbrush and toothpaste - it's morning time where you land and you realized you haven't brushed your teeth in approx 24 hours. You'll be glad you brought this!
24// Slipper socks - I always take off my shoes while sitting in my chair on international travel and put slipper socks on over my regular socks.  It keeps my toes warm... just make sure you put on your shoes before you start walking around the plane.

Written at http://peoniesandorangeblossoms.blogspot.com

Disclosure: this post contains some affiliate links which may generate a revenue for the site.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Weekend Whimsy #5 - Easter Edition!

Welcome to this Easter edition of Weekend Whimsy!

//ONE//
Wow, look at these very pretty Easter baskets, from Martha Stewart, who else??

//TWO//
Have a look at these fancy imperial Faberge eggs... they are just so incredibly pretty.

//THREE//
How cute are these bunny sneakers?? They also come in black! 
//FOUR//

Don't know what to do with all of those extra eggs? How about making this healthy greek yogurt egg salad sandwich?

 //FIVE//
The pictures on this blog are so pleasing to the eye... but I have no idea what the blog says as it's in another language. Take a look at these pretty Easter pictures!

//SIX//
I am in love with this hare fabric... I would use it besides Easter time! 

//SEVEN//
These tussie mussie napkins have me just dying from cuteness!  They are easy to make too, you could pull it off in time for tomorrow!

//EIGHT//

This rabbit menu card is so cute... the little bunny tail carnation is so clever! 

//NINE//
I fell in love with the Pottery Barn glitter eggs but they sold out before I could buy them... this is the perfect Pottery Barn Easter copy-cat! 

//TEN//
28 beautiful Easter tablescapes to ooh and aah ate! 

And will end it for the week!!
Do you like my blog?  Peonies and Orange Blossoms Bloglovin' is my favorite app that I use to read and follow blogs!

Written at http://peoniesandorangeblossoms.blogspot.com
Pictures are not my own.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Spring Summer Hair 2015: the Lob


I am loving the lob hair style. I chopped my hair to a lob last Spring, but I never styled it like the beach waves that I see in all the pictures below.
With my hair appointment coming up and the fact that my 30th birthday is not too far away, I think I am wanting a new look to start my 30s. Check out my hair inspiration...
the lob hairstyle