{lemon spaghetti}

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I like carbs and I cannot lie!  The way I see it, God invented carbs for a reason!  #yolo

This isn’t your typical meat sauce + noodles.  It’s light and refreshing.

It’s an unexpected combo that works so so well together!  Perfect for a summer side dish.  I typically have all the ingredients on hand too!

A couple of thing before we get started.  “Good” olive oil is KEY!  It’s one of the main ingredients on this dish.  I bet you already know what I’m going to say, huh?  Seka Hills Olive Oil is the #1 in my book.  I don’t even mess with the store-bought stuff anymore.

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You guys, Seka Hills invited me out for a farm tour a few weeks ago.  I’m still blown away.  Over 17,000 acres!  Different olive varieties.  Grapes #wineo  Almond trees.  Honey (bay’s fave) Asparagus, which I have a new-found respect for.  Not that I didn’t love it before, but did you know asparagus has to be harvested daily?  By hand!  It’s a labor of love, my friends!

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60 acres of asparagus.  Crazy, right?

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The honey!

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Did you know they grow all the produce that is distributed to wine club members?  I figured they sourced it out.  Nope!  This photo below is where they grow the produce we get!  Just another plus!

Oh and if you’re interested in joining their wine club, here’s all the info: Seka Hills Wine Clubs

And can we talk about the fact they now have Beef Club, I might need to get in on that one.

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But the olive trees, they are beyond impressive.  Seka just released a new variety of Olive Oil.  It’s called the Tribal Blend.  It’s a unique blend of estate Frantoio + Picual + Arbequina.  The results are a medium to robust intensity.  It’s different.  More bold.

This week, I cracked open my second bottle of the Tribal Blend EVOO!  And It’s what I used in this Lemon Spaghetti recipe!!

Basically, I’m obsessed with it.

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The funny thing, I’ll drink cheap ass wine.  Pizza from Little Caesars.  But when it comes to olive oil, I straight up do not mess around with the cheap stuff.  Ha!

#oliveoilsnob

Lemon Spaghetti // 

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Here’s what you’ll need:

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{friday 5}

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Happy Friday friends!  Hope you all had a great 4th of July!!  And have a fun weekend planned.  I’m headed back to Tahoe to finish celebrating.  This whole Wednesday Holiday business is for the birds.

First, I’ve got 5 things on my mind…….

 

ONE – Mom’s Famous Chicken Tortilla Casserole // You guys are gonna want to “pin” print or save this one.  It’s one of my Mom’s (many) famous recipes.  My sis requests it for her Birthday dinner every year.  We have it every family pumpkin carving night.  Bay made it just a couple of weeks ago for Father’s Day.  And I realized, I’ve never shared this keeper with you guys.  It’s easy + delish!  Make it this weekend for your troops 🙂

* This recipe is best if you make it the night before or morning of.

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Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts cooked + shredded (or rotisserie)
  • 12 corn tortillas (taco size), cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 1 cup red onion, chopped
  • 1 can Cream of chicken soup
  • 1 can Cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 can Chili con carne (no beans)
  • 1 small can green salsa
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1 can sliced black olives
  • Green onion, chopped

 

Here’s what you’ll do:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray a 9×13 baking dish with non-stick spray.

In a large bowl mix together chicken + tortillas + red onion + soups + chili + green salsa + chicken broth.

Pour mixture into prepared baking dish.

Top with shredded cheese + olives.

Bake 1 hour.

Top with green onions + serve 🙂

It’s one of those feel good meals that instantly remind me of my childhood.  I think we’ve all got one of those, right?

 

TWO – Beach Tote // I’ve had my eye on these net tote bags for a while now.  Picked one up at Urban Outfitters last week to see what all the jazz was about.  And of course, I fell it love with it.  I found some even cheaper on Amazon and I’m going to upgrade all my re-usable grocery bags with them.  They are super stretchy so they fit wayyy more than you think.  Washable…which is key!  My old bag has seen better days.  The Kate Net Tote comes in 6 other color options too.  Thinking I may need to scoop up a pink one next.

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Kate Net Tote Bag

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THREE – ACV drink // You all know by now that I’m a huge Bragg Apple Cider Vinegar fan.  I drink a shot of that shit every.single.morning.  I promise with time, it really does get easier.  Honestly, I don’t mind it at all.  I spotted the new “drink” on the shelves last week.  And different varieties too.  I grabbed the Ginger Spice.  They also have Honey, Apple Cinnamon, Grape, Limeade, Pomegranate and Sweet Stevia.  It’s about $3 for a glass about the size of a Gatorade.  I saved it for my afternoon snack.  Drank 1/2 the bottle each day.  Then went and bought more.  It’s good!  Click below for more info:

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{a little of this + a little of that}

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It’s been a while since I’ve rambled about random shit, so today felt like a good day to let it all out…….

Two days until July.  How did that happen?

This is blog post #671.  How did that happen?

Question: would you hang out with me if I rocked a La Croixswimsuit all summer?  I recently had to wean myself of La Croix.  True story.  I was straight up addicted. Told you, random shit ha!

Let’s chat IGTV for a sec.  Are you into it?  I feel like I just don’t have time for it..lol.  Is it bad that I’m (not so) secretly hoping it disappears?

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{summer tops under $40}

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I’m the self-proclaimed Queen of Summer Tops!  Ha!  Once you’ve got your key bottom pieces: black denim + white denim + the perfect fit denim + cut-off’s!  You’re set!  You can rotate your bottoms all year-long with a cute top.  I am always on the hunt for tee’s + tops + peplums + tanks….you name it.  Since I’m constantly adding tops, price tag is KEY!

So, today I’ve rounded up TWENTY SIX tops under $40.  Some I own.  Some are on their way to my doorstep.  Some are on the ol wish-list.

Let’s start with this Bow Tank Top I tried it on in the white.  Thought, nahhh – I need a color.  Spotted the navy.  SOLD!  At $19.50, you really can’t beat it!  And it looks great with white denim + cut-offs + my fave jeans.  You’ll be seeing this heavily rotated this summer!

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Top // Denim // Slides // Bag 

 

 

Top – $19.50 comes in white + navy!

Denim – GAP from last year.  To be honest, I no longer love these jeans.  I’ve spoiled myself with Madewell and can’t turn back.  So, I am currently on the hunt for THE PERFECT white denim.  If you’ve found them, holla at me K!!

Slides – Good old Target!  $22 with over 120 reviews.  They are so cute and actually go with wayyy more than I originally thought!

Bamboo Bag   – My $40 amazon knock-off is still coming out to play at least once a week.  So fun!  NOTHING falls out.  At least, I haven’t lost anything yet!  Did you see Target came out with one too?  A New Day Bamboo Clutch $34!  SCORE!

 

Here’s a better look at this top!  Best part – the straps on this top are so well designed!!  You can wear a regular bra without any bra straps peeing out!  Can I get a hell yeah?!?!  I will forever be team hate the strapless bra!

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And here are 25 super cute.  Super affordable.  And ALL under $40!  You can thank me later 🙂

J.Crew Factory //  You guys.  Factory has been on FIRE lately.  I’ve been frequenting the Vacaville store more than I’d like to admit.  New arrivals are all marked 50% off + FREE SHIPPING!!  I included some dressing room shots below for reference.  Here’s my top picks:

 

 

Striped Tie-Back Tee // Friday Tee // Tie-Front Tank // Eyelet Peplum Tank // Printed Tie-Shoulder Top // Embroidered Shell // Scalloped Cami // Tiered Tank Top // Tie-Shoulder Cami Top // Embroidered Tie-Sleeve Top

 

 

Madewell // Madewell rarely has a sale or a decent promo code.  Until today!  Use code SPARKLER for 20% off select Summer Must Haves.  Sign up as a Madewell Insider (which is FREE) and receive FREE SHIPPING with every single order!!

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{caprese asparagus}

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I’ve got a quick + easy side dish for you today.  Not only is it absolutely delicious, but it’s absolutely beautiful too.  Raise your hand if you’re totally obsessed with caprese salad!  Or caprese anything really.  I have a vision of a caprese burger.  Yumm, right?  Thinking about trying it out this week.

Caprese consists of a few simple ingredients.  Mozzarella cheese.  Tomatoes.  Basil.  That’s the main components.

But, you know I can’t just leave it at that.  Always gotta jazz it up a bit.

Kinda like my {caprese egg cups} I shared a couple of weeks ago.

So, how about asparagus?  It’s in season and inexpensive right now.

Topped with a balsamic glaze.  Hell yeah!

I just realized I’ve never shared my baked caprese before.  OMG!  Clearly I’ve been holding out on you guys.

Next time you’re having guests over or asked to bring a side dish, MAKE THIS!  Super easy.  Ingredient you can’t go wrong with.  And look at it….it’s pretty AF!

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I used my fave Seka Hills products to make this.  Their newest Tribal Blend Extra Virgin Olive Oil(So, so good)  Wildflower Honey.  (Bay eats this straight from the jar)  Which both came in the June wine club bundle. And the Fig Balsamic Vinegar.  My personal fave of the three they offer.

(images: via)

 

Here’s what you’ll need:

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{friday 5}

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Hey Girl, Hey!  It’s Friday!  Weekend plans: eat pizza + watch movies (we rented 3) + lay by the pool + celebrate Father’s Day + volunteer + kayak.  A little bit of everything.  Super looking forward to all the things we’ve got on our agenda.  Don’t you love it when that happens?  Whatever you’ve got planned for the next two day, enjoy it.  Have a good one friends!

 

What to know what’s on my mind this Friday?  I’m just going to take up a hot second of your time…..

 

ONE –  Volleyball Camp // Today was the last day of the week-long Pioneer Volleyball Camp.  This was Bay’s first year and she absolutely loved it.  BIG thank you to Carrie + my Mom for getting her to + from while I’m stuck at work.  You guys, I swear she grew another inch this week too.  Today, she actually borrowed one of my workout tops.  And….it fit her.  WTF is happening?

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TWO – Food Find // Trader Joe’s Salad Topper.  Ingredients: Sliced almonds + roasted pepitas + salt + white sesame seeds + black sesame seeds + nigella seeds + crushed red pepper.  $3.99 for 8 individual packets.  Basically 50 cents per salad.  So far I’ve sprinkled this topping over eggs + tuna + salads.  So good!

 

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THREE – Holy Housewives // Did you watch the trailer for season 13 of Orange County?  What a shit show!  Bravo added three new housewives (that’s including Vicki and her new face HA).  Set your DVR for Monday, July 16th!  From the looks of the video below, it’s going to be a good season!

The Real Housewives of Orange County Gina Kirschenheiter Emily Simpson Shannon Beador Vicki Gunvalson Tamra Judge Kelly Dodd

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{may in review}

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In case you missed it, let’s review what went down in May…..

23 blog posts.

Some of my highest viewing stats, thanks to the Patron sale at Nugget + my Mother’s Day Gift Guide!

Something else that caught my attention, I had views from 44 other countries.  Forty four!  Crazy, right?  I’m really not even sure how that happens.

 

 

Here’s a little re-cap on what we chatted about in May:

 

{currently craving // may} should I do this again for June?

Bay requests this {crunchy iceberg salad bowls} weekly

According to stats this was my highest viewed post for May {gift guide: mother’s day}

{friday 5} this post came in second…all because that Patron sale at Nugget lol.

{weekend notes} a weekend full of Spring Show

The prettiest summer salad I ever did meet {strawberry + beet salad}

{kaia BRIK goals} meeting my goals, but missed two classes in the last 6 weeks (not bad, not bad)

{april in review} and 2 cute Target dresses

{friday 5} homemade pickled onions + a madewell top I love

Another good one {weekend notes}  Mother’s Day + Lucky In Kentucky + my strawberry + baby daisy naked cake

Taco Tuesday {sheet pan shrimp fajitas} with a side of guac…yummm

This {floral top + random thoughts} is another one that’s been on maj repeat + it’s currently marked down to $17!!

Getting a little hippie-dippie with these {floral + herb smudge stick diy}

Now I want to go home and clean my fridge again after looking at this {friday 5} And I’m happy to report….Bay + I are still doing our Friday morning Starbucks dates too ♥

{weekend notes} celebrating GG + pool dates + hiking…that was a damn good weekend

So, {do you kimono} now?

Bay Bakes {oatmeal peanut butter cookies}

Only 2 1/2 days of school left, do you have your {teacher gift} ready?  Loved getting tagged in everyone’s pics that duplicated this fun gift idea.

Still obsessed with this crop top from {friday 5}

Anyone made these {mexican burgers} yet?

Spending the weekend checking out Cory’s old stomping grounds on {weekend notes}

Currently want to tie dye everything after making these {tie dye napkin diy}

Have you added any of these {food finds} to your TJ’s list

 

What a month!

Once again, BIG thank you to you for clicking on this website and reading.  Thank you for sending me pictures of the cute tops you order from the blog.  Tagging me in your pictures on insta stories.  Texting me for that recipe.  Tips on how to make the naked cake.  You guys really do make my day ♥

 

And in other news, the dress of my dreams arrived last night.  Remember the one I told you about yesterday on {weekend notes}?

 

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I bought this dress for an event.  Otherwise, I would have no place to wear it.  Ha!  I’m not a big get super dressed up type.

It’s like a gown.  Never, I have ever owned a dress like this.  The quality is top-notch.  It’s elegant.  Classic.  The color is so vibrant.  Super faltering silhouette…almost like it was tailored.  The ruffle details are perfectly placed.  And it has pockets!  Basically the ultimate summer statement dress.  Exactly what I was looking for.

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