Monday, December 8, 2014

10 Strong and Sexy Gift Ideas

It’s officially the holiday season people!!! Time to get your ladies dancing, lords a leaping, and pipers piping! OH! And if you could let my husband know about those five golden rings, I’d really appreciate it. Girl’s gotta get her bling on!

Along with the holidays being the season of cheer and joy, they can also be the season of “OMG why did I eat ALL of those Christmas cookies??!!” and then you feel as round and plump as Santa’s second cousin Frank, who no one really talks about because he isn't quite as jolly.

So this year, I've come up with 10 Strong and Sexy gift ideas to help you tackle those winter blahs, and keep you on track for a healthy holiday!

Check out the full article at Strong Is Our Sexy to get the details about each of these fabulous gifts! 

I for one am already dreaming of waking up and finding those leg warmers and that sports bra under my tree. Hopefully some of these ideas will make it on your list to Santa this year, and you have a healthy and happy holiday season!
The above products and links are in no way associated with the brand Strong is Our Sexy, nor was I paid to promote them. All opinions are 100% my own.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Pantone Color of the Year 2015

In the design world, Christmas comes a wee bit early with Pantone announcing their 2015 color of the year! 
Say hello to MARSALA! 
Images source: Pantone
At first I was like "meh", but then after a little research I was like "yes I need this!". A deep hue that is a wonderful balance between purple and red. Switching gears from the bright Radiant Orchid in 2014, to a deeper more sophisticated color is a welcomed change if you ask me. 
Just look how stunning Marsala is going to look on your body, on your walls, and on your face! 
Image Source / Source / Source 
Image Source / Source 
Image Source / Source / Source 
To celebrate Marsala, let's pop open a bottle of Marsala, and toast to the new year that holds a beautiful promise to be filled with beautiful color!
Be sure to check out the colors of Pantone past. 

Monday, November 24, 2014

Therese's Famous Spaghetti Sauce

You guys, my mom makes THE BEST spaghetti sauce.

“No way! You see, MY MOM makes the best spaghetti sauce.”

….well I find that hard to believe, because I live in this town, and everyone I KNOW is talking about MY MOM’S spaghetti sauce. 

“Well I talked to Mayer Grimble the other day, and he declared MY MOM’s sauce the tastiest in the land!”

Listen you pasta punk...I will END you!

But seriously, my mom actually does have a KILLER spaghetti sauce recipe, and lucky for you I am unlocking the family-vault-of-secrets and sharing it with the masses!

Spaghetti dinners feasts were a bit of a tradition growing up in my house. We would get out the big roasters, and fill them with enough pasta and sauce to feed a small army. Which was perfect, because when my entire extended family came over, that was pretty much the magnitude of us.
I am all for coming up with random reasons to get together with my friends and family. Nothing says “I love you” like offering to fill their bellies with delicious food.  And who doesn't ALWAYS make too much pasta? I swear that stuff is IMPOSSIBLE to figure out, I mean seriously, does it multiply in the pot by 10 when it’s boiling?

So just take that extra pound of pasta as an excuse to invite everyone over! This recipe will fill your home with an aroma that is one part garlic, one part aphrodisiac, and one part fairy dust magic. I promise, so SO GOOD!

Here is what you need!

1 lb. ground beef
1 lb. Italian sausage
1 medium onion – chopped
1 medium green pepper – chopped
8 cloves garlic – minced
3 cans, 15 oz.  Italian diced tomatoes
30 oz. tomato sauce
12 oz. tomato paste
1/3 cup sugar
2 tbsp. Italian seasoning
1 tbsp. dried basil
2 tsp. dried marjoram
1 tsp. table salt
½ tsp. black pepper
Pasta of your choice - cooked 

Originally this recipe was intended for the crock pot, and honestly I think the longer it cooks, the better it tastes. Something about it just stewing all day long really sets in those incredible flavors. That being said, if you don’t have the time to let it cook all day, or just want your pasta RIGHT THIS SECOND! there isn’t much difference between the slow cooker, and the stove top directions.

Crock Pot directions:
In a large skillet over medium heat, cook beef and sausage until no longer pink; drain. Transfer to a 5 qt slow cooker, stir in green peppers, onions, garlic, tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste, sugar and seasonings; mix well. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours or until bubbly. Serve over pasta.

Stove top directions:
In a large skillet over medium heat, cook beef and sausage until no longer pink; drain. Transfer to a large soup pot, stir in green peppers, onions, garlic, tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste, sugar and seasonings; mix well. Cover and cook on high, stirring every once in a while, until bubbly. Serve over pasta.
I hope you give this sauce a try, and think of me, when all of your friends are completely astonished by your unbelievable spaghetti and the mystic qualities it possesses. 

You can also find this recipe featured at Strong is Our Sexy this week! 

Friday, November 21, 2014

SIOS - Abstract Painting Party

I'm back at Strong is Our Sexy talking about how to bring some fun to your walls, as well as your day, with a painting party

When it comes to decorating your space, you want make sure to include lots of personality.
YOU ARE UNIQUE, and your home should reflect that!

Custom art is a fun and inexpensive way to brighten up your walls, and really let your style shine. Now some of you may be intimidated by the thought of making “art”, but I’m not talking about recreating a flawless rendition of Monet’s Water Lilies. Art is anything you want it to be! If it holds meaning to you, and makes you happy whenever YOU look at it, it’s perfect.

If you’re still not warming up to the idea of painting something by yourself, get your favorite ladies together, pop some bubbly, and have a PAINTING PARTY! Doing something new and intimidating, while surrounded by your friends, somehow makes things SO MUCH easier.  Am I right!? 

Visit Strong is Our Sexy for the full instructions on how to make this abstract piece! 
Shout out to my wonderful family of volunteers!  
If you would like to read the whole tutorial, click the link to visit the Strong is Our Sexy site. 

Friday, November 14, 2014

SIOS - Chambray My Way

Playing some Strong is Our Sexy catch up before the weekend! Check out my article about how you can dress that wardrobe staple; the chambray shirt

Fall is here, people!
The beautiful trees with now amber leaves are a sure sign that it is, in fact, autumn. This time of the year is hands down my favorite. Nothing beats holding a warm beverage in your hand, crunching leaves under your boots, keeping cozy with a big scarf—safe from the crisp air—while picking out the perfect pumpkin (and hoping that said pumpkin doesn't get smashed in the street by the annoying group of boys who live on your block).
OK, so the pumpkin-smashing isn't so great, but there really is something special about the change of season, and the perfect balance it brings between a blistering summer and frigid winter.
The fashion that follows is also a reason why I am such a fall fanatic. Give me riding boots, chunky sweaters, and a color pallet that matches those gorgeous leaves I mentioned. One piece that I think should be in everyone’s fall fashion collection is the chambray shirt. This shirt is so versatile; it can go from casual to professional with just a few swapped accessories, and is great for layering on days that start out chilly, but end a little warmer.

To give you some inspiration, I've created a little fashion show to demonstrate how you can wear this classic piece all season long. 

(Please excuse my awkward poses. A propped up iPhone just doesn't give you the direction you need to be a successful model...psssh!) 

For more ideas, visit STRONG IS OUR SEXY
For more ideas, visit STRONG IS OUR SEXY, and read the whole article HERE

Monday, November 10, 2014

Strong is Our Sexy - DIY Painted Plates

As most of you know, for the past 2 1/2 years I have been just a little obsessed with Pole Fitness. You can read about my journey and latest pole-iversary in THIS POST
The magical place where I was introduced to pole (and basically consider a second home now) is Bella Forza Fitness. Not only do they have an incredible aerial fitness program, but they also have dozens of other classes you can choose from. BFF has been a MAJOR part of my healthy lifestyle transformation, and I will always be grateful to them for providing fun and exciting opportunities to be active. 
So when I was asked to help write for their new site Strong is Our Sexy, I was BEYOND thrilled! With the tag line "A bit of perspiration with a lot of inspiration!", Strong is Our Sexy is all about challenging women to evaluate what it means to be the best version of themselves, whatever they may look like. 
I highly urge you to check out the site. Alongside a handful of other inspiring women, we will be posting about various topics ranging from Fitness and Nutrition to Motherhood and Family. I will be writing for the Lifestyle and Sisterhood category, and hope to bring lots of DIY's, recipes, fashion inspiration, and other ways to bring a little bit of fabulous to your life! 

The first project I am sharing on SIOS is DIY Painted Plates
If you would like to read the whole tutorial, visit STRONG IS OUR SEXY and click the link HERE

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Recipe Review

What's cookin' good lookin'?
Remember, you may kiss the cook, but don't mess with the buns! 

For those of you, who have absolutely NO desire to come up with something new to make for dinner, have no fret! I am here to do the dirty work for you. I've rummaged high and low through the vast span of the inter-web (ok…mainly Pinterest) and have returned equipped with a batch of new and easy-peasy recipes to share! All of these have been a hit in the Wellman house, and if the ever disappearing leftovers aren't a sign of good eats, I don’t know what is.
Hope you enjoy!  

(One Skillet) Sweet Potato Burrito Bowls 

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Anything that says "one skillet" I am 100% on board with. Less dishes to clean = winning. Make sure you use a big pan though, this recipe is chocked full of beans, corn, sweet potatoes, rice, peppers, and all sorts of other burrito goodness. Click HERE for the recipe. 

Apple Pecan Pies 

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I recently made these for a pot luck at work, and although they didn't look very appetizing, they were super yummy! Very FALL, with the pecans and apples. The most difficult part was coring all of the apples, just took a few attempts before we really got the hang of it. Click HERE for the recipe.  

Chicken Broccoli Quinoa Casserole

Image from
This is another "one pot wonder" dish that is an updated version of the classic chicken broccoli and rice casserole. I've recently began cooking more with quinoa, and it's a great substitute for rice that is packed with protein. Click HERE for the recipe. 

Crock Pot Maple Dijon Chicken Drumsticks

Image from
God bless the crock pot. I usually prep everything the night before, cover, and stick it in the fridge. Then the next morning I just plug it in and press "start" before I take off for work. Knowing that I don't have to cook at all that night, truly makes getting through the day easier. Plus these 6 ingredient drumsticks are amazeballs! Click HERE for the recipe. 

Savory Ranch Crock Pot Pork Loin

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Let me reiterate, I LOVE THE CROCK POT! I try to have pork in our menu every once in a while so Eric can have his fix. Otherwise he's stuck eating chicken more often than I'd like to admit. Plus this way I know I can't mess it up. Throw everything together, press start, and done. Click HERE for the recipe. 

Italian Chicken

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And speaking of chicken! Featuring tons of tomatoes and artichokes, this has become one of our favorite ways to cook it. I believe the recipe has this served over pasta, but we usually just eat it without. I have been doubling the amount of artichokes it calls for though, but that's just our preference. Click HERE for the recipe. 

Spinach Tortellini Tomato Soup

Image from
On Wednesdays, we eat pasta. And you can NOT beat this old fashioned tomato soup infused with delicious tortellini concoction. You cook everything in one huge pot, use frozen tortellini (translation: EASY) and then basically just heat everything through. Click HERE for the recipe.

Stupid Easy Paleo Spaghetti Squash and Meatballs

Image from
So spaghetti squash and I have a love/hate relationship. I really think it's a nice alternative to pasta. No, it could never replace the carb-tastic original, but it is a waste line friendly way to mix things up. Every time I attempted to make it though, I ended up trying to cut up a piping hot-out-of-the-oven squash while, wearing oven mits, and almost dropping everything onto the floor...and cursing. 
Enter "stupid easy" spaghetti squash recipe. 
You guys, I am NEVER baking my spaghetti squash again. Cutting it up beforehand (while it's NOT a million degrees) and sticking it in the crock pot surrounded by sauce and meatballs, is SO MUCH BETTER! To get my squash to fit, I had to cut it up into quarters, which made handling it to pull the "spaghetti" out of the squash much more manageable in the end. 
OK, enough of my rambling, click HERE for the recipe. 

Warm Mushroom and Asparagus Salad 

Image from
Most of the time I don't put much effort into making sides. This salad was perfect though alongside some basic chicken that we threw on the grill. I could eat asparagus everyday, and the mix of balsamic vinegar and thyme brought in great flavor. Click HERE for the recipe. 

Are you hungry now?! I could browse through recipes for days. The whole process of cooking and creating something from nothing really gets me excited!
Or I'm just super obsessed with food.
Either way, I hope YOU found something especially appealing, and are now inspired to get crazy in the kitchen! 

Thursday, October 16, 2014

As Seen On Craigslist - Pink Tufted Side Chairs

At some point you guys are going to start calling me the "crazy Craigslist lady".
Which is pretty much just one step before "crazy cat lady", except cats make me that would never work. 
I swear, I am aware that there are more websites out there besides, and that you actually CAN purchase furniture from inside a store, instead out of someone's living room or garage. 
But seriously, where is the sport in that? Hunting is so much more fun :) 
And just look what my latest kill find is! 
In my previous As Seen On Craigslist postI designed a room around a blue chaise lounge, and before that a stunning pink sofa. Well the pink passion continues, because my recent prowl brought my attention to a set of vintage pink tufted side chairs going for $200. 
Not only is it more pink tufted magic, but it's DOUBLED the pink tufted magic!!! 

When I scope out furniture in thrift stores or on CL I always pay attention to the lines. Is the overall shape fantastic? Does it have a solid build? If the fabric or finish is the only reason you don't like a piece, that can be changed. 
Good bones are key. 
In this case, it was the shape of the back as well as the legs that grabbed my attention, and overall, I really do like the pink color. When you first hear "pink chair", your head may go straight to Hello-Kitty-teenage-bedroom-bonanza. But pinks can totally be done in a chic and sophisticated way that you can love well into adulthood. 

With that in mind, check out how I envisioned these side chairs would look in a bright and shiny new setting! 
I'm really into the dark blue walls lately. I balanced the deep color by bringing in neutrals with the curtains, black and white rug, warm wood tones, and leopard print pillows. Also, pink and chartreuse? Match made in heaven! 
As Eric pointed out, this isn't a very "manly" room, and he would TOTALLY sit down in one of those chairs. 
*cue eye roll*
Whatever you say Eric, it takes a real man to pull off pink :) 

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Setting The Table for Fall

I adore this time of the year. Leaves crunching under your feet, a hot drink in your hand, and pumpkins scattered all over the place. Getting to layer sweaters and scarves with cute jackets and boots is a definite perk as well.
Fall fashion is just a giant mass of cozy wrapped up in flannel goodness.

Autumn has made its way into our home recently, and I've been dying to share with you my table decorations this year! 
Just like in fashion, layering is such an easy way to instantly make your table look polished. You can layer plates, table runners, napkins, you name it. I placed a napkin in between my stacked plates to break up the look, and to tie into the black centerpiece. Speaking of the centerpiece, this one is a vase from IKEA I bought years ago, placed on top of a mirror, and filled with fake leaves and flowers. The table runner is made from an IKEA panel I had hanging in my room during collage (this one is equally awesome), and a strip of fabric I pulled from the remnant bin at Jo-Ann Fabrics ages ago. 
Gold and purple pine cones??? Yes please! 
I found all of these either in our backyard, or under a tree I passed on my walk the other day. A quick coat of spray paint and nature got a nice dose of glam!
The candles are from IKEA, and the rest is just random fall decor I picked up last year at Hobby Lobby or Dollar General.
Yes I know it looks a little silly since we really don't use our dining room, or plan on having a bunch of people over anytime soon (not to mention the absent cutlery and glassware). But I just CAN'T pass up the opportunity to decorate for the season!
Do you fill your home with leaves and pumpkins? Or do you go the frightening route for a more Halloween theme? I like to keep things somewhat Fall-neutral, and make my decor last from September through November. 
Decorate smarter not harder!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Cincy Craigslist Browsing

It's been about six months since my last post about the great findings that Cincinnati's Craigslist has to offer. So what better time than the present to dive right in?

I've included the item's link, but you never know how long these listings are going to last.
First up are these purple pieces of perfection. I swear it's a miracle that every piece of furniture in my home isn't covered head to toe in tufting. For $600, you could have a pair of purple Crate and Barrel Tessa Chairs, originally 1K each. Pretty great deal if you ask me. 
Next up is this dresser for $65. Six drawers just begging for that hardware to be polished to a shine, or replaced with something a bit more your style. How great is that wood grain pattern in the middle though? Kind of reminds me of chevron...but not really...but still in a good way. 
Space feeling a bit tiny or cramped? One solution is...say it with me now! Big. Ass. Mirror. This mirror in particular would be great because that frame is plastic, so it wouldn't be nearly as heavy compared to if it were solid wood. Paint the frame a crisp white to go anywhere, or even a bright and surprising color! $30 and it's yours. 
My heart LONGS for the space to put an adorable little bench. Somewhere you can park your bum to put your shoes on, just littered with adorable throw pillows. Le sigh. For now I'll just dream of this bench that's listed for $45. I'm picturing it with a complete makeover. Spray paint that boring black frame, and cover the bench with fabric for an instant upgrade. Below are some combos I'm particularly fond of: black leopard with gold, bright floral with plum, or a more neutral animal print with dark navy. 
To me #MCM does NOT mean Man Crush Monday, but Mid-Century Modern! 
Personally, I can't get enough of MCM dressers, and this one for $120 is no exception. I'm envisioning leaving the drawers the natural wood, but painting the frame white. Maybe letting those legs pop as the main feature with an accent color. Hardware could easily be switched out, or left as is depending on their condition. 
Right along with my bench obsession, is the desire for a settee. This settee, for $65, is just too cute for words. I'd have to see exactly how "green" the fabric is in person, but that could be reupholstered, and the frame painted. 
No lie, I've been checking this desk out for a while now. I'm not even sure why. Maybe it's the legs, or the really wide drawers. Something about it is calling to me, and for $50 (and if I ever get my own space in the office) it very well may end up being mine.  
And for $60, I could get a retro little 70's pink egg chair to use while sitting at said desk! 
I've never bought a rug on Craigslist, but I wouldn't rule it out. These would 100% need to be checked out in person, since cameras can do all sorts of crazy things with color, and they may not be anywhere close compared to how they actually look in real life. 
That being said, if this 8'x11' oriental style rug is as gorgeous as it appears in the pic, I'm completely won over. First off, $50 for a rug that size should be illegal. Seriously. Secondly, if your space is pretty neutral and needs a boost of color, this rug is your soul mate. Go! Go now and make this beauty yours!  
Last on my Craigslist scavenger hunt are these three Persian rugs. Ranging in size and design, from left to right they are priced $500, $450, and $550. Considering their large size, and the amount of artistry that must have gone into making them, I personally don't think the asking price is too outlandish. 
And that's the whole shebang! 
Well, for now at least :) 
Anyone else out there find a sweet Craigslist score lately???