August ’13 Bucket List

Although we’re almost a week into August, we still have the rest of the month to squeeze in any last-minute summertime activities. Once September rolls around, I immediately get sucked into the “Halloween/crisp air/layers of clothing/new Fall tv shows/Pumpkin Spice Latte” mode that I am really starting to love. BUT, before this mode shift occurs, I’ve decided to make a short and sweet (and realistic) bucket list to wrap up the month of August and Summer 2013!

1. Hiking, Yikes

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I wouldn’t consider myself super “outdoorsy”, but I think it’s good for the mind, body and soul to spend a day hiking. Get outside, sweat a little, swat a few bugs, and reach a point and feeling of accomplishment.  Go with the first outfit for a beginner’s hike on a not-so-treacherous route.  If you plan on getting down and dirty on a real-deal mountain, you will definitely need to invest in some hiking boots.

Check out these 6 hiking tips for beginners!

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2. Dinnertime Grillin’

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Grilling is a must in the summertime and I’ve been wanting to have a Kabob-a-palooza all summer now.  Slapping this on the bucket list seems silly but these recipes require a little more effort than your average dinner planning.  I’d love to make all 3 version and pair it with a side salad for a fresh and light meal on a Friday night with my honey or a small group of friends.  And you better believe I’ll be sippin’ on a margarita (salt, on the rocks) while I’m grilling!

Kalyn’s Kitchen – Steak and Mushroom Kabobs

Skinny Taste – Lime Cilantro Shrimp Kabobs

Betty Crocker – Teriyaki Chicken Kabobs

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3. Pool Party

I don’t have a pool in my backyard and unfortunately I don’t know anyone who has one, where I could just show up and plop myself in their water.  That’s when you have to make do with what you’ve got.  Be it the neighborhood community pool, or a local pool in your area, pack a small cooler (check the pool’s regulations, some don’t allow any outside food OR drinks in), a book, music, and most importantly, FRIENDS, and make a day of it. 

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4. DIY Project

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A great way to keep the summertime vibe alive during the transition into fall is your decor.  I wanted to find a DIY project that was “beachy”, yet not typical.  I have seen on various blogs and websites a a super easy and inexpensive way to jazz up seashells.  Using spray paint, you can transform a typical seashell into a work of art. This blogger gave a great tutorial on chroming shells she found on the beach.  My plan is to do the same, but use a matte black spray paint instead to give it a very unique and funky look.  If you’re unable to collect your own beach shells, Michael’s has a great variety of cheap shells you can decorate yourself!

5. Circufairnival (Circus + Fair + Carnival) 

I NEED to go to a circus, or a fair, or a carnival–BADLY!  I love the atmosphere of a the lights, the smell of the food, the animals, people watching, the shows, etc. These events can be pricey, so be aware of the money you’ll be forking over!  This is also a great opportunity to wear something fun and festive! 

Girl’s Night – Winery Edition

This weekend was my bachelorette party!! We visited two different wineries in the area.  I wanted to highlight this as a girl’s night/day.  Wineries are a fun place to visit and can be as inexpensive as you’d like.  Plan a day with your girlfriends and have each person bring something like hummus and pita chips, cheese and crackers, pasta salad, etc.  Bring a little money for a glass of wine and you are set.  Want to do more than talk??  Then bring games like corn hole and ladder golf or you could be lucky a pick a winery that will provide those games.  Do research on the winery before visiting; check and see if they have any free tours or events going on this summer!

Blonde vs. Brunette vs. Brunette – Country Concert/Tailgaiting

If you saw Monday’s post, you know that we went to a country concert for the Brunette’s birthday.  We wanted to post a picture from the concert to show what we actually wore.  You can see how different our styles really are.

THE OTHER BRUNETTE

This is our other best friend and she loves her some country concerts and country boys.   She wore her cowboy boots and her feet were sweatin’ up a storm.  What women won’t do for fashion…? She also rocked her jean cutoffs, America tank with a black bandeau underneath and a fun, long necklace.  This is pretty much the country concert wardrobe.  A good pair of boots, cutoffs, and representing for the good ole’ U S of A.  She is definitely more country than we are and she loves it!  I say Yeeehaw to her outfit.

THE BLONDE

I wore a rolled up, Bermuda length pair of jean shorts, a oatmeal colored knit racerback tank, and a simple pair of black strappy sandals.  I chose this because I knew it was going to be hot and I wanted to keep it as simple as possible.  I liked the tank and the fact that it was knit because it would keep my relatively cool during the day and hide any unsightly sweat marks.  The sandals allowed my feet to remain cool and the jean shorts…  some may call them mom shorts, but, my philosophy on shorts is that you cannot rock a booty short after 25.  This is just how I feel, I do not speak for all at Bubbly on a Budget.

THE BUBBLY ON A BUDGET BRUNETTE

While I am all for themed outfits and dressing up, I chose to stick to my signature style rather than opting for the signature country concert wardrobe, which would have felt like a costume to me.  I wore a black cutout maxi dress bought from Forever21.  The sandals were super comfortable and had a funky, tribal pattern; snatched these babies up from Target.  My favorite accessory is obvious; my FANNYPACK.  I don’t care what anyone says, this fanny is PERFECT for concerts.  I had all my essentials right with me at all times without the hassle of holding a purse or having to leave my money, ID, or cell phone inside the car.  I was concerned at first about the black dress in such hot weather,  but it ended up being very comfortable and worth it.

As you can see, it’s important to know your style and feel confident in what you’re wearing.  We love that all 3 of these looks are so unique to our personalities and yet we all felt confident and comfortable; and those are the best accessories for any outfit!

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Girl’s Night – Tailgating Edition

This past weekend we decided to do something fun to celebrate the Brunette’s upcoming birthday.  We decide to attend a country concert and tailgate.  We brought food and drinks and braved the heat!!  Here are a drink and food idea for your next tailgating event!  We have recipes for Beermosas and a fun spicy hot dog.

Beermosa

You will need:

  • Orange Vodka
  • Beer
  • Orange Juice

In a solo cup (because that is the only way to do it!!), pour half a beer.  I used a cold Bud Light.  Then mix in about a shot and a half of orange vodka.  I have seen some recipes call for orange liquer, but that’s a little more expensive even for off brand.  Finish off the cup with orange juice.  Swirl around the cup a little and enjoy!

Spicy Hot Dog

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You will need:

  • Hot Dogs
  • Hot Dog Buns
  • Bacon
  • Jalapenos
  • Tomatoes
  • Onion

First take a piece of bacon for each hot dog and wrap it around the hot dog.  You can get fancy and slip some slices of cheese between the hot dog and bacon.  When you put the hot dogs on the grill, be aware that they will need to be on there for a long time to get the bacon really crispy.  If you take it off too soon, the bacon will be a bit to chewy.  While cooking the dogs, prep the salsa.  Cut the tomatoes, jalapenos, and onions into small chunks.  For a pack of hot dogs, I used two Roma tomatoes, half an onion, and two jalapenos.  Once they bacon is nice and crispy, put in bun and top with chunky, spicy fresco salsa.

Enjoy the spicy hot dog and refreshing beermosa on a hot day with friends and/or family!!

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Mimosa Bar

 This past weekend was my family bridal shower.  We showed the Barbie cake and the dessert bar yesterday.  Today, I wanted to show you the mimosa bar and give you some ideas on how to do it for your next party, get together, shower, breakfast for the big day, or some Sunday.

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The sign is an easy DIY and can be used for any event or holiday.  All you need is scrapbook or construction paper, ribbon, a marker, scissors, and a hole punch.  Cut out a triangular pennant for each letter and space you need and then write one letter on each.  Then punch two holes at the top of each pennant and thread the ribbon through the holes spelling out whatever you desire (i.e. Mimosa Bar, Bubbly Bar, etc.).

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Here are a few tips to achieve the best mimosa bar:

Tip #1:  Recipes not only take it to another level, I think they are necessary.  There will be a lot of guests who aren’t creative or who don’t want to experiment, they just want to know exactly what to do.  This is why the recipes are perfect.  They make the drinks fool proof.  Also, come up with cute names for the drinks (i.e. Blushing Bride, Marry Me, and Mrs. ______ )

Tip #2: Glasses flutes and containers are a definite must!! They may break occasionally (:: cough cough Amanda::), but, they are relatively inexpensive and make the bar look a lot more formal.  The champagne glass were found at Ikea and were less than $5 for 6.  And the fun juice containers were found at Homegoods for $1.99 each.

Tip #3: Make sure you include fresh fruit in the bar.  Take it to another level by adding recipes below each of the fruits giving the guests ideas for how to combine the juices and fruits for different drinks.  Even more fun, add sherbets or sorbets for the guests to add to the champagne; maybe even put a few popsicles in a wine glass for champagne to be poured over.

Tip #4: Pay attention to details.  I am a total detail person and I loved the details like the adorable straws being held in the unique champagne flutes, the Keep Calm and Drink Champagne sign, and the champagne chillin’ in the cute metal bucket.

And last but not least, probably the most important tip. Tip #5:  Be sure to have enough champagne for your guests.  You don’t want to run out!  Lucky for us, we didn’t

Girl’s Night/Day – Sunday Brunch

Bubbly on a Budget was created not only to help with fashion and DIY, but, to help keep all aspects of our life budgeted.  This includes girl’s night/day.  We all love getting together with friends; so, once a month we will present you with a fun get together idea.  We will give you a recipe for a drink and food and also present a fun activity.  This month we present Sunday Brunch.  We have included a recipe for strawberry shortcake muffins and strawberry mimosas along with the rules for a clothing swap.  These recipes and activities are tried and true as we have done them with some friends before presenting them.

Strawberry Short Cake Muffins:

You will need:

  • vanilla/almond muffins
  • diced strawberries
  • granulated sugar
  • powdered sugar
  • whipped cream
  • spoon

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Vanilla/Almond Muffins

1 c. granulated sugar  1 egg  2 c. flour  2 tsp. baking powder  1/4 tsp. salt  1 c. milk  1/4 c. melted butter  1 1/2 tbsp. vanilla extract  1/2 tbsp. almond extract

Preheat oven to 375°.  Mix sugar and egg.  Add in flour, baking powder, and salt.  Then add milk, vanilla extract, almost extract, and melted butter.  Bake for about 20 minutes (mine took 17 minutes).

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After cooling for about 15 minutes, cut the muffin in half.  Put the diced strawberries in a bowl with a spoonful of sugar and 2 spoonsful of water.  This will create thin, syrup for flavor.

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Put a spoonful or two of the diced strawberries on the bottom half of the muffin and a big dollop of whipped cream.  Then put the top part of the muffin directly on top of the whipped cream.

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Sprinkle powdered sugar on top of the muffin to finish it off.

Strawberry Mimosa:

You will need:

  • champagne
  • strawberry puree (crushed strawberries, sugar, and water)
  • glass
  • diced strawberry (optional for garnish)

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Pour champagne and add strawberry puree.  Be careful when putting the puree in.  It may cause the champagne to overflow.  Garnish with slice strawberry.

Clothing Swap:

You will need:

  • clothing, shoes, accessories

First, you will need to decide what you want to exchange.  It can be only shoes or clothes or a mixture.  Then decide how many you want everyone to bring.  Remember, these will need to be clean and in good condition.  Choose a person to go first (youngest, oldest, first to show up, rock/paper/scissor, etc.).  Then go clockwise from there.  The first person gets to pick what piece they would like out of all the items.  You will continue until there are no clothes left or there is nothing you want left.  Make sure you try the clothes on before taking them.  And if there is an item that is highly sought after you could always do a runway off to see who rocks that item better.  Remember this is all in fun and can be adapted to fit your needs!  If there is anything left at the end, donate it to a local Goodwill store.