Sweets to the Sweet

I know, I know...I did name the title of this post after a "Candyman" movie quote!  But I guarantee the recipe for these Dark Chocolate Quinoa Truffles will not scare you at all!.  I am a such a huge lover of dark chocolate!  You will usually find me with a small bag of Brookside's Dark Chocolate Goji in the house and I will nibble a few of them throughout the week.  I came across this incredible treat after doing some online searches for quinoa recipes.  The Queen of Quinoa website has a long list of amazing recipes using quinoa in some unusual ways.  I just had to try this dish out when I discovered it paired my favorite candy, sweet dark chocolate with my favorite grain, quinoa.  Now if you all are unfamiliar with quinoa, this super grain is high in protein and fiber and oh so versatile.  But I never imagined using it in a candy dish.  The recipe was super easy to follow and the truffles came out candy store perfect!  Would you like this recipe or more quinoa recipes?   Head on over to the Queen of Quinoa  www.queenofquinoa.me and while you do that I will enjoy me a nibble!

Until next time Sweeties!

Clover Canyon

The west coast fashion designers at Clover Canyon have continued to captivate us with their Spring 2014 collection. The inspiration for this collection is their beautiful Southern California landscape. All these showstopping and airy pieces will keep you cool and ahead of the fashion game!

Until next time!


Laura Mercier

My hands down favorite makeup product, I have purchased in the last couple of years is the Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer.  I originally was a MAC girl for my foundation needs, but my skin tone changed and I could not find the right color to fit me anymore.  I tried to change to a different product in the same line with no success.  I purchased other products recommended by makeup artists at the beauty counter in the departments stores and was disappointed with the products and the prices.  Drug store makeup was also met with no success because I couldn't sample the product before making a purchase and I now have a drawer full of liquid, cream and cream to powder foundations!  What's a girl to do?  I made my way to Sephora and was perusing the products when I was approached by a salesperson.  After explaining my dilemma she quickly led me a makeup artist who directed me to the Laura Mercier line.  I quickly scanned the line and really did not see many foundations for women of color.  My skepticism must have shown on my face because she readily assured me that she had a product she thought would be perfect.  After asking me some questions and analyzing my skin she pulled out the tinted moisturizer and began applying it with a brush to my jawline.  My eyes grew big as she brushed the product on and it matched my skin tone perfectly!  Oh happy day!  I am still pleased with this product and generally use a small amount to achieve a glowing complexion.  The big plus with this tinted moisturizer is no one can tell you are wearing makeup, you just look like you have light tan. So if you are looking for a product that provides light coverage as well as protecting your skin from harmful rays head over to people at Laura Mercier.

Until next time!

Poppin Heel(ies)!

I wore these shoes on Saturday night and lasted a full four hours!  Thank you Jessica Simpson!

Not the best photo but all you high steppers know when your time in the heels are up! LOL!  Until next time!

Curb Appeal

Well you all saw awhile back when I planted the flowers in front of my house.  Here's a look at what the front looks like now.  I'm still please at the progress so far.  All the flowers I used are for high sun and they need limited amounts of water, which is perfect for drought stricken Texas.  Working on keeping the lawn healthy has been tricky due to the changes in weather but, I do not want the grubs to take over my yard.  If you have any tips or advice you would like to share, please leave me a comment or email.  I am ready for a glass of Merlot after being out in this humidity so,  I'm going to grab a glass and wish you all  a relaxing evening!

Until next time!

Ear Cuffs

They say everything old is new again and that can be definitely said for ear cuffs.   I like to see when hot trends make there way back in style.  Ear Cuffs were and still are a great jewelry alternative to getting multiple piercings or for those who have no holes in their ears.  Cuffs are now designed to dress up or down depending on your outfit.  The price range is huge like $5.00 from Forever 21 to $20,000 from Moda Operandi, making this a style everybody can afford.   Even though I am a mature woman(did I say that?), I still like to bring the funk into my look and these cuffs do just that and more!   I love when I rock a piece and my kids look at me and say "look at Mama she trying to be young".   Then I reply "no baby you trying to be hip, Mama was rocking these long before you were born!" Wonk!

buy this here: www.lyst.com

Until next time!

Earth Day 2014

Happy Earth Day everyone!  I am making a huge effort to be environmentally conscious.  In recent months I have moved into a green house, planted a garden, purchased oxygen cleansing plants, stop buying Styrofoam plates, recycled my plastic bags and the biggest accomplishment of all...plan all my shopping excursions so I wont drive all over.  I know these are baby steps but at least I'm moving forward.  Next on my list is to purchase some rain barrels.  What steps are you taking to protect the Earth?

Until next time!


Foo Dogs

Chinese guardian lions or Foo Dogs as we westerners call them are said to possess mythic protective powers.  Many of these statues have graced Imperial palaces, government buildings and the homes of the wealthy in China for many centuries.  In Feng Shui they are a symbol of a families status and wealth and are often placed at the entry to your home.  Today Foo Dogs are used as a decorative accessory in many design styles of homes and they have been at the top of my must have list.   Take a look at how they are incorporated into different rooms.  The little white ones at the end are mine and I am more than pleased with this set.  What are some of your favorite accessories around your home?

Until next time!

Guest room (a work in progress)

I have been working on the guest room and I am so ready to get ready of this headboard!  It doesn't go with anything.  When this headboard was in my room years ago my bed was so high, I needed a stool to get on it. After changing my bedroom years ago the bed moved into the guestroom.  The room is not working for me, it feels stuffy now and I haven't found a bed I want so I'm tempted to make my own upholstered headboard. Maybe I will purchase all white bedding and curtains to get a more open and airy look.  I want the guest room to be a complete space of it's own not a dumping ground for furniture I don't use anymore.  Oh well, decisions, decisions.  I like looking at pictures of my home over the years and seeing how my design aesthetic has changed. Wonder what I will like in the next few years?  I do know that I still need to work on editing my accessories in my whole house.   It's a good thing that I am in the staging business I can roll some items into my inventory.  Well I'm off to hit the stores and see what inspires me!

Until next time!

JC De Castelbajac

Hey Loves, I just wanted to share with you some fashions from the french born designer JC De Castelbajac's Spring 2014 line.  His clothing looks like works of art and are a visual masterpiece!

 If you like the designs above here is a more affordable version from Zara.  If you want it you can get it here: www.zara.com

Until next time!


Hey Loves, I missed you all last week but my allergies got the better of me and I had to make friends with my pharmacist.  I'm still not 100 % fine but I'm functioning.  So you all know my Mmm...Mmm...Monday posts are about something I really love at the moment but this post is different, its special.  I am posting about the two items I own that mean the world to me, and those are my Grandma's cast iron pans.  For all you that didn't know, I was raised by Grandmother and she instilled some serious pearls of wisdom in me that I unfortunately didn't appreciate until she was gone.  The one lesson she tried to teach me was to cook and at the time I wasn't receptive to her efforts.  My focus was on having this fabulous career and dining in fancy restaurants.  Fast forward over 20 years later and I am a wife and mother of two, who fancies herself to be a culinary dynamo in the kitchen.  If you would have told me 20 years ago that I would actually enjoy cooking, I would have looked at you crazy.  Well back to the pans, whenever my Grandmother would cook her Pineapple Upside Down cake, Cornbread, Fried Chicken, Spanish rice or Spaghetti and Meatballs she would pull out one of these pans.  Sometimes I would sit in the kitchen and help her prep some ingredients usually with a frown on my face.  Grandma must have forgot that I was going to be this fabulous career woman and would be too busy to cook!  It's funny how all those cooking lessons I was too stubborn to learn from my Grandma, I struggled to learn from a cookbook!  When my Grandmother passed away and some of her possessions were divided among my family, I asked for her cast iron pans, it seemed funny at the time because I couldn't cook a thing!  Grandma must have known that cooking for you family was a gift and that a meal could nourish your body and your soul!  So with my Grandma whispering in my ear, I will create memories for my family one meal at a time!  I love you forever and always Grandma Wilma and your pans are being put to good use!

Until next time!

I Never Promised You a Herb Garden

Being a born and bred city girl I have never attempted to garden.  Our family had no grass at all, just a small concrete yard so growing up I never had the urge to plant a garden.  Now after many years of being a "suburbanite I'm itching to grow something.  I'm not one to focus on my short comings so I will tell you what I can do!  I do know how to plant my feet inside a kitchen and that's just what I did! I looked inside my cabinets and refrigerator at all of the things I eat and cook with the most and decided to try my hand at growing a portion of my own food.  The thought of starting a full garden immediately intimidated me so, I will go a lot smaller with a herb and tomato container garden.   I went to my local nursery and purchased some organic herbs and the rest were a toss up between Home Depot and Lowes.  I made sure to use regular soil no Miracle Grow or any other pretreated soil.  I did this based on the recommendations from seasoned gardeners.  All plants were thoroughly soaked before being planted.  Before I forget, the herbs I chose were Thyme, Rosemary, Dill, Parsley and Basil.  I cant remember the different variety of tomatoes I selected but, I do know that I planted Heirloom which is my favorite.  I will let you all see the progress as my garden grows and hopefully I can put a minor dent in our rising grocery bill.

Hey Loves, watch my garden grow!  Until next time!


Iman Home Ibiza Collection

This February Iman released her bedding and bath collection with designs inspired by her travels across the globe.  My first glimpse of her collection happened when I was flipping through an issue of Elle Decor and some of Iman's must haves were listed and my eyes were immediately drawn to the pillows she listed.  I was surprised to learn that they came from her own line, so after doing a quick search online for the pillows I discovered that she has a whole bed and bath collection.  The beautiful colors and prints of Morocco, Hollywood and Ibiza come alive in her global chic designs.  I haven't been able to locate the items in a store yet, but believe me when I do those Ibiza pillows are mine!




I hope you enjoyed this feast for your eyes.  Until next time!

Lily's Cakes

Every now and then I come across a gem in my city that I just have to share with everyone.  Last year I had a craving for something sweet to eat but I wasn't sure what I wanted.   As I was driving to my grocer's bakery I saw the sign for Lily"s Cakes on the way and decided to give them a try.  Well I am happy to say we have had a long standing relationship ever since.  If you are a cupcake, cake pop, cake or baklava lover this is the place for you.  I have sampled many of the cupcakes and they have every flavor imaginable from Italian cream, Nutella, Coconut Cream, Red Velvet and my personal favorite Salted Caramel.  I know I'm leaving out more flavors but this is a place you have to visit for yourself.  The cakes are truly works of art, they look beautiful and taste delicious!  After my umpteenth(I know this isn't a real word but I had to use it!) visit last week I wondered who was the person behind Lily's Cake?  Well I had the pleasure of meeting the owner Lilian Halabi and she is one hardworking lady. This family owned business located in Harker Heights, TX opened in October 2012 and has already amassed a hefty following of cake lovers myself included. When I asked her permission to take pictures for my blog she was unsure at first, but when I let her see what my blog is about she said she really liked it and graciously allowed me to take photos.  She even showed me photos of some of her other creations as well on Facebook.  If you are in the mood for a little sweet treat or you want to purchase a cake for any occasion that is beautifully designed and delicious head over to Lily's Cakes and tell them Really Darn Lovely sent you!

Until next time!

New Kicks?

Hey Loves, as I stated in my previous post I am determined to have a healthier lifestyle and to do that I have started changing my eating habits and increased my workouts.  I have been pleased so far with the results my only complaint is my poor feet have been aching something fierce from all the exercise!  So I am looking for some new shoes or arch supports to provide me with some relief.  Here are my options:

Reebok RealFlex Transition

Nike Free TR Fit Training

Bloch Traverse Mid

I'm still on the fence about the shoes or arch supports but I know I need to make a decision quickly.  Well, I'm off to rub my toosties!

Until next time!

Grown and Sexy

Every year I vow to take control of my health by exercising regularly and watching what I eat.  So far this year, I am still going hard by increasing my workouts considerably.  I went from doing cardio from 3 days to 5 days a week.  I also added weight training to my schedule 3 days a week.  My endurance has increased tenfold with the additional workouts but I didn't notice a difference in the mirror until.....I changed my DIET!  Yeah I know, this should be a given thing but this IS a real struggle.  Eating consistently is really hard for me because I'm not really hungry in the mornings.   But every morning I make myself eat my oatmeal with flax seeds and chia seeds or my Greek yogurt with nuts.  If I don't eat in the morning, I will definitely overeat at lunch!  Choosing healthier options for me are now easier since my husband has also gotten on board with changing his eating habits.  We both have always worked out regularly but have shied away from making true changes to our diets.  But let me tell you honey, we both like the way we are looking and feeling!  I wish I had started earlier.  When I was younger and I would see all the older people walking and jogging around my neighborhood I use to think to myself "why did they start so late?"  Now I know, they want to grow older without any health issues or limitations.  I know this post was a bit wordy but my new outlook will bring some health conscious posts.  So make sure to support and/or join me in my quest to keep it GROWN and SEXY!

Until next time!