Monday, July 27, 2015

Make It Monday: Dinner Edition

Basil Lemon Butter Cheese Ravioli

Sometimes, you need a delicious, not-at-all-clean dinner.
Seriously. Sometimes, you just need comfort... and food. In the form of pasta. Everyone loves pasta. The boyfriend especially. The kid could live on cheese ravioli and not gain a pound. It's really annoying. This is by far his favorite meal. Since I found this recipe, he's requested it several times. I can't blame him, though. I always feel like it's really fancy when I make it! Except, it's really not. It's cheap, easy, and quick. Perfect for a Sunday night dinner!


1 bag frozen cheese ravioli
1/2 c. butter (I use Land o' Lakes w/ olive oil)
1 shallot, minced
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tbsp. lemon juice
1 tsp. lemon zest
2 Tbsp. fresh chopped basil
Parmesan cheese, for garnish
Extra basil, for garnish, optional

How To:

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Boil the ravioli until done, approximately 7 minutes. The ravioli will float when done. Toss those in a colander. To keep this a one-pot meal, using the same pot, melt the butter. Sauté the shallot and garlic until tender. Mix in the lemon juice, zest, and basil. Let that simmer for about 5 minutes. Just long enough to let the flavors combine. Return the ravioli to the pot, and toss to combine the ingredients.
Serve it up hot with Parmesan and a little extra basil!

That's it. See how simple that is? And don't you feel fancy?

Monday, July 20, 2015

Tarte Energy Noir Palette

True Life: I'm Obsessed with Fall Makeup

Seriously, though, I'm obsessed with fall everything. 
Oxblood, flannels, vampy lips, vampy eyes, porcelain skin, combat boots, black skinny jeans, crunchy leaves, cool breeze... Need I continue? Have I gotten it across that I live for fall?
Tarte's new fall palette is this gorgeous Energy Noir clay palette. Take a deep breath, because I'm about to gush about how perfect it is. Preface: I love Tarte.

Let's get some swatches in here.

Look. At. Those. They're so pretty. Look how well that highlighter goes with the blush! *sigh*

Ok, so let's break this palette down. The top left six shades are all eye shadows. 4 matte shades and 2 shimmer shades. The bottom 2 left rectangles are shadow liners. Obviously, the large one is the blush, and the rectangle under that is the highlight.


The shadows are really pretty. In the matte shades, there's a white, a nice grayish shade, a deep brown, and a lilac mauve. All these shades are highly pigmented and really true to color. I think I've used 3 of these shadows in a look already, and they are so easy to blend. If you've used the Tartelette matte palette, these mattes are to par with those. They're wonderful.
The two shimmers are in the center, and I'm in love with them. Charged Up has different hints when you're in different lighting. It looks like a nice gray shimmer, but in the swatch it almost looks like a taupe-y nude. Up to Slate does the same thing. It's a silvery purple shimmer. Both of these are so creamy and so easy to blend into the mattes.
I personally don't feel like they have any more fall out than other shadows.  They just go so well together, and I can't handle it.


These are also matte, clearly. I actually haven't used them as liners. I've blended that Power Plum into my outer corner, though, and it's wonderful. They do feel a little drier than the shadows, so I think if you wet an angled brush, they'd make a perfect subtle or deeper liner. Definitely something you could build on. 


This blush is gorgeous. Gorgeous. It's so, so highly pigmented. You only need a tiny bit to get it done. I feel like it has a hint of mauve in it, which is perfect for fall.


I've only recently become a highlighter fan. Like, really recent. Maybe 2 months ago. This one is more on the champagne side, and it just compliments the blush perfectly. I currently have a tan (ugh!), but once I get back to my lighter tone, I think it'll look perfect. As I'm just starting to like highlighting my face, I'm not on board with "strobing." BUT I bet this shade would be great for it this summer, because it's really pigmented, creamy, and just really bright when applied.

Unfiltered photos of me using the palette.
All over the lid and up to the brow bone: Stone Unturned
Transition shade: Misty Mauve
Inner and outer corner: Dark Drive & Power Plum
Center of the lid: Charged Up
Blush on the cheeks.

The palette is currently for sale online, at Ulta, Sephora, and Tarte (obviously). It's supposed to be hitting shelves on the 23rd, this Thursday.
What are you ladies thinking? Anyone going to pick it up?!

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Current Routine

Health / Fitness


So, you guys know I've been a vegetarian for like, 4-5 years now. I do my best to stick to that, there are times when I have my moments, and honestly, if I lived near the ocean, I'd probably be a pescatarian. Don't prosecute me! I much prefer the vegetarian life over meat. It just a generally lighter feeling. I don't feel over stuffed or gross after I eat. Recently, I've been doing clean-eating (or ya know, mostly). 
If you don't know what clean eating is, it's simply eating non-processed foods. My grocery cart is typically at least 50% fresh fruits and vegetables. No white bread or white rice. Typically, if you don't know what the ingredients in something are, it's not clean. It's really not that hard. But I love my sweets, let's be honest. So, through the week, I eat as clean as possible, and on the weekends, I'll allow small treats here and there. Not too bad. But let's be real here. I'm not giving up my morning grande caramel soy iced coffee. Nope, I can't do it. 
If you're interested in getting started in clean eating, check out Fit Girl's Guide. I found them while perusing through fitness things on Instagram, and guys. There is no body shaming in this community. Every single person in that community is just ridiculously motivating and positive. It's really great. (:


In the last three to four weeks, I've changed up my workout routine. I was following a 12-week guide from Fit Affinity, and while I really liked all the weight-lifting, I wanted to start seeing slimming results faster. I'm impatient, ok? So, now, I've been doing 30 minutes of cardio 4 days a week, as well as 45-ish minutes of abs and arms/legs. This has been really working for me. Within these 3 weeks, I've already noticed my work pants fitting more loosely, which is just so motivating. So, I'm going to keep that motivation and momentum up. Keep in mind that everyone's body is different and finding what works for you is what's important.
Here's a sample of my typical leg day:
  • Cardio. I  typically do 30 minutes on the elliptical with the setting on interval hill. During the lower resistance time, I keep my speed around 6-7mph. During the higher resistance time, I speed up to stay in the 10-11mph range. Seriously gets your heart rate up, and the intervals kick up the amount of calories you're burning.
  • Stretch. I do a few minutes of stretching my legs and arms out after cardio.
  • Abs. I alternate daily between abs and obliques (sides). On the days when I do abs, I'll typically do weighted sit ups (with a 10 lb. plate), leg lifts, and reverse crunches.
  • Legs. If you guys don't know, I love leg day. It's just my favorite thing to work on. Lately, I've been doing pyramid reps of squats. So, 10 times at one weight, add some weight and do 8, add more and do 6, add more and do 4, then back to 6, 8, and 10.  I'll also do hip abductors/adductors, and weighted lunges.
Typically, my workouts last 1-1.25 hours, and I don't find this to be unreasonable.  Each week, I'll typically workout Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, 2 days of arms and 2 days of legs. Abs and cardio happen on every day. Which, can I just say, I loathe abs. I don't even want them, but I do want a smaller waist, so...

I'm surely not claiming to be a health expert (I'm definitely not). These are just the things that seem to be working for me lately!

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

DIY Marble Coasters

Fact: I have to start my day with coffee. Otherwise, I nod off at my desk.

Hello, my name is Tori, and I'm addicted to coffee. Iced coffee. It's a very rare occasion that I actually drink hot coffee. Like, it has to be the middle of winter in Ohio, and a cup of Cafe Verona. 
My cubicle has these cute little water rings all over my desk from my iced drinks. So, I thought it was about time I found some coasters for my cube. But not just any coasters, of course. They have to be cute and colorful, and preferably shiny. I've got this current obsession with gold leafing and just whatever you can find me that is shiny and gold.
Enter DIY.

What you need:

Sculpey clay of various colors
Exacto knife
Large jar (or something with a large circle opening)
Baking sheet
Oven (;
Liquid gold leafing
Paint brush
Clear coat of enamel or clear spray paint (optional)

How to:

Break off a few nice chunks of colors that you like. The already rolled one is the scraps of a previously made coaster.

Roll all pieces out.

Wrap the colors together.

Roll the wrapped up colors until it's a smooth cylinder.

Put the ends together, and twist them together again.

Roll that out until smooth again.

Form into a ball.

Roll that thang out, and look at your pretty colors! Decide what side you like better, and place your large circular object in that spot. Now, take your exacto knife, and cut around the edges. I saved the scraps, and rolled them into their own cylinder to use in my next coaster!

Pop your pretty creations into the oven at 275 for about 30 minutes. Once they're completely cooled off, paint the edges of the coasters as you like. I'm personally not a fan of perfection, so the gold is in various thicknesses around the coaster.

At this step, you can certainly add a clear coat of enamel or clear spray paint if you want them glossy. I'm going to do that, but it was torrential downpour on my way home from work, and I didn't feel like running out there. (;

So, here's the finished product! They look great, and I love them. They would make great gifts, too! Plus, if you have kids, kill two birds with one stone. This would be entertaining for them while they help make pretty things!
If you guys make these, I seriously want to see them! Leave pictures or just comment on how it went! (: