Friday, October 31, 2014

Half-Faced Skeleton Makeup & Costume // Halloween 2014

Happy Halloween!

As a child, I was a cowgirl for five years in a row. Thankfully, I have become more creative over the years.

In previous years, some of my favorite costumes have been when I dressed up as Kanye West and Boo from Monster's Inc.

This year, with the help of Pinterest (Follow me!), I decided to kick off the Halloween weekend on Thursday by dressing up as a skeleton with a dramatic makeup look. I was hesitant about the makeup and unsure if I could actually pull it off. I wanted the "human" side of the makeup to be very dramatic and girly, so I used a heavy hand when applying bronzer and blush and threw on some fake lashes and a bold lip as well! Two of my friends were also planning on dressing up as skeletons (they did a DIY costume!) so we all met at their apartment to get ready.

We used Pinterest pins and YouTube tutorials to get inspiration for our makeup, and I think it turned out pretty well! 

Have a fun and safe Halloween!

xoxo Ava

Outfit Details:
Dress: Amazon
Tights: Spanx
Shoes: TJ Maxx
Necklace: Burlington Coat Factory
Facepaint: CVS
Lip Color: Revlon Colorburst Matte Balm in 210 Unapologetic

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

The Ultimate Breakfast Sandwich // Barista Parlor // Nashville, TN

One of the highlights of the year so far for me was my 21st birthday trip to Nashville, Tennesse with my two older sisters, G and C, G’s then fiancé (now husband!), and two friends. As a country music fan, I chose Nashville for its reputation of a bustling nightlife featuring live bands. And it was so fun!

We had some exciting plans for the weekend, including visiting the Grand Ole Opry and seeing Seth Meyers perform at the Nashville Comedy Festival. However, the highlight of the 48-hour trip turned out to be our Saturday morning brunch at Barista Parlor in East Nashville.

Like any true social media addict, I used Instagram to search for places to visit and I found this picture of a Barista Parlor meal during a quick search of #Nashville. My family will tell you that 2 of my true food passions are iced coffee and a good breakfast sammie, so this picture obviously caught my eye and I KNEW we had to check it out for ourselves. (Thanks, @nashvillefoodfan !)

Saturday morning of our weekend in Nashville came and we were all exhausted from a late night out on Broadway Street (which might have included me singing a country song at a karaoke bar and then dancing to a live band until 2am…maybe). 

As we stepped out of the Uber, we realized that the restaurant was in a converted garage. There was an old pickup truck and small patio with tables and chairs outside, but the garage doors were all open, letting fresh air and light into the space. The walls were white and floors concrete, which allowed the artwork and reclaimed wood furniture to be the focus.

When we walked in, my sister C said “That’s the guy from The Office!” BJ Novak was right there, sipping on coffee and writing in a notebook. He was in Nashville that weekend to perform at the Nashville Comedy Festival, so we decided not to go talk to him and instead creepily stare from afar. He later tweeted that Barista Parlor was his favorite spots in Nashville!

Can you spot him?

The line for food was already about 10 people long and we were surprised to learn that the only menu was right at the only cash register. Seeing as I generally take forever to decide what to order, we all decided to order a few different things and try eachothers’ choices. After we ordered, we sat down at a long wood table and stared at BJ Novak until our food came.

We waited about 15 minutes for our food and boy was it delicious!

The iced coffee was strong, just the way I like it. The waffles were fluffy and the strawberry topping and crème de fresh were the perfect addition, no syrup needed! The presentation of all the food was rustic and simple. A bandana was your napkin, which I had never seen before, and it certainly went well with the décor.

But, the breakfast sandwich. Oh. My. God. By far, this was the best breakfast sandwich I have ever had (but hopefully I will come across more in the “research” for this blog!). The biscuit was the perfect balance of buttery and moist and flaky. It did not crumble as you ate it, which is my main complaint with other biscuits. They also offer a gluten free biscuit, which excludes the lard that their traditional biscuit has, making it a great option for vegetarians and vegans as well. C ordered the GF biscuit as part of her sandwich and loved it! The sausage had a “zip” to it and the eggs were definitely “farm fresh”, as they claim. The serving size was perfect (it would be able to fit in the palm of my hand). The sammie as a whole was mouthwatering. I didn’t want to be done with it!

Everyone was impressed with their meals and the overall experience. Barista Parlor is a gem in this city and I would recommend that any breakfast fan make the ten minute journey from downtown Nashville to experience this unique café. Who knows, maybe you will run into a celebrity!

Check out Barista Parlor here.

xoxo Ava