Monday, July 21, 2014

Meatless Monday: Egg & Portobello Mushroom Burger

My sister introduced me to portobello mushroom caps and although I was a little suspicious at first, I was very pleasantly surprised after I made these egg burgers. The consistency is similar to meat so it's a great substitution for beef or you can add it to your favorite burger. This was my first time making them but a quick Pinterest search gave me dozens of suggestions. Most people grill the portobellos but we baked them with an egg in the oven. This is such an easy and filling meal fit for everyone whether you're a vegetarian, trying to lose weight or simply want to make something new for dinner!

What you need (one serving)

1 portobello cap
1 egg
red pepper flakes
black pepper
dill weed
garlic powder
1 hamburger bun
and your favorite toppings
1 slice of cheddar or swiss cheese (optional)

What you need to do, baking instructions. 

Preheat oven to 415 degrees
Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray with cooking spary
Flip mushroom over and cut the stem
Gently crack an egg inside the mushroom
Season generously with salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, and dill weed
Bake for 20 minutes or until egg has cooked all the way through
Add cheese at the last five minutes (optional)
Place on bun, add your favorite toppings
Serve with grilled vegetables and enjoy!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Watermelon Green

H&M top: thrifted $4
Necklace: Dillard's $15
Express jeans: Gabe's $15
Shoes: thrifted $2
Clutch: thrifted $1
Wearing Funky Fingers in Glow Stick

One of the easiest ways to spice up a basic outfit is to accessorize with a statement necklace. I always buy basic tops in bold colors like yellow, green and purple and let the necklaces do all the talking. I found this H&M watermelon green shirt at the thrift store on a 50% off day for $4 and have been having a lot of fun accessorizing it. I wore it with a bright pink bib necklace to my sister's brithday (necklace also featured here) and with a thrifted layered blue necklace to Goodwill for a segment on thrift shopping which will air on WKYC's Live on Lakeside in October. Speaking of television apperances, I will be on New Day Cleveland sharing my favorite thrift store tips and finds on July 30 at 10:00 a.m. so stay tuned! 

Monday, July 14, 2014

City Spotlight: A Weekend Well Spent in Akron

I usually don't share weekend recap posts on Dina's Days frankly because my weekends aren't really interesting enough to share. Scrolling through the photos on my iPhone this morning, I realized we had a fun filled weekend in Akron worthy of sharing.

On Friday, I decided it was time to kick my two month long craving for a milkshake. When I say my sister and I had milkshakes, I mean we had milkshakes.She made a good point, if we're gonna do this, we're gonna do it right. So off to Swenson's drive-in we go (more like she went and I impatiently waited for her to arrive with my goodies). We wrapped up our night with a game of badminton where we complained that we couldn't see the birdie in the dark but felt good about justifying our milkshake indulgence with the slight activity.

I volunteered to take a 30 minute shift in the dunk tank at the Summit County Historical Society's 90th birthday celebration at Perkins Mansion on Saturday.  The celebration was a 1920s themed event so guests got to enjoy old fashioned games like marbles, sack races, and even a cakewalk!  My friends and family came out to support the event and to see me suffer in the cold water. Joanna from Akron Empire took a break from her book signing to give it a shot. Thankfully she missed.  It was a hot day, but the water was cold and the drop into the dank was a shock every time, hence the utter drama on my face in the photo that made it to the Akron Beacon Journal.

After the event I spent time with loved ones and stopped by Gabe's to buy baby clothes for my friend's newborn. You know how it is, for every 5 minutes you spend buying a gift for someone, you spend 10 minutes shopping for yourself (I just made that theory up but it's pretty accurate for me). I found the most adorable dress with a heart shaped cut out in the back. I will probably wear it this Friday at my trunk show at NOTO.
Shop the garden collection this Friday! 

Speaking of the trunk show, I spent Sunday morning preparing for the event. I'm so excited about this collection! You can shop the entire garden theme collection (think garden colors and patterns) this Friday from 10-5:30. Anything that's not in the garden collection is going to be up to 50% off. More information here.

I spent my Sunday afternoon at Goodwill Akron helping my friend and client Ryan find thrifted clothes to match his style. This was my first personal styling session with a male client so it was a bit challenging for me in the beginning but we found tons of pieces that he can wear several different ways. Stay tuned for a recap of that session on the Goodwill blog.

I wrapped up my weekend at the pool with an evening swim with friends. Unfortunately, I didn't get a picture of the epic cannon balls.

Have a great week!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Back to School & Casual Outfits with Goodwill

Boy Scouts hat: Thrifted $2 * Basic tee: Thrifted $1 *Denim: Thrifted $5 * Target shoes: Thrifted $2 *
 Forever 21 jacket: * Thrifted $4 * Tote: Thrifted $2
Although I've been out of school for six years now (yikes), I usually correlate back to school campus style with my current weekend style: comfy, casual, with layering pieces for backup. If you've followed this blog for sometime, you will know I stand firm against fashion rules (you're not the boss of me!) but there are some territories I won't cross like leggings to the office or pajama pants to school. Just because back to school clothes are meant to be comfy and practical, it doesn't mean they have to lack style.

For this month's style segment for the Goodwill Akron blog, I am sharing how you can thrift your way through your back to school list. If you're not in school, you can totally translate these pieces to casual weekend wear. Remember these basics:

Flats in a neutral color
Comfortable shoes are a must for campus or weekend wear. Neutral colors like black or nude will pair well with practically any outfit.

Comfy denim
Look for a pair that will work well with flats or boots that way when cooler temperatures hit, you can easily tuck them into boots for a fall look.

Light pieces for layering
If you're like me in September, you're sweating and huffing and puffing all the way to class with a 100 pound book bag on your back, but by the time you enter the building you're freezing because the air conditioner is on full blast. Same goes for running errands in and out of stores. Add color to a simple outfit with light jacket or cardigan in your favorite hues. The best part is that you can shop jackets and cardigans all year round at Goodwill Akron.

Basic t-shirts
A basic yet flattering t-shirt is essential for both back to school and casual style. I live in my basic tees on the weekends. They are comfy, not overdone, and can easily be styled several different ways.

Backpacks, totes & accessories
Goodwill carries backpacks for all ages. Go for a classic backpack or try a vintage oversized tote or messenger bag for your books. I found a tan oversized tote for $2 that fits my laptop, and other necessities for the office. Adding a necklace, light scarf or even baseball cap can really elevate your look from basic to casual chic. I have been into caps lately and scored this original Boy Scouts hat for $2.

July’s Thrifting Tip: Try to make it a habit to donate at least one item every time you go to Goodwill. By doing so you’re making room for new items in your house or closet, recycling, donating to a good cause, and receiving a discount towards your next Goodwill purchase!

See the original post on Goodwill's blog

Monday, July 7, 2014

Style Spotlight: Ahmad (Thrifting for Men)

When I met Ahmad a few months ago I instantly noticed his sense of style. But even as a regular thrifter, I would have never guessed he was an avid thrifter as well. For the month of July, Katie and I launched a thrifting for men theme on our blogs, so I figured a spotlight on Ahmad was only necessary to get everyone excited about men's thrifty fashion. I got together with Ahmad last week to shoot a few photos and we chatted about his favorite thrift stores and tips. 

{Semi casual look: Thrifted blazer $4 / Thrifted shirt $5 / Thrifted socks $1} 

As a teenager, Ahmad's dad would always say to him: "if you don't like what I buy you, buy it yourself." That's all the motivation he needed to hit the thrift stores. Soon after he realized how easily he was able to shop on a budget, but what he loved most about secondhand shopping was the creative aspect it. "You can create combinations and looks no one else will have," said Ahmad.

{Casual look: Thrifted pants $7}

Agreed! That's the number one tip I tell people at the Goodwill workshops. That's not the only tip Ahmad I have in common for thrift shoppers: have a plan and bring a friend. "I don't like being in stores forever, having a plan keeps you from looking around aimlessly, which cuts down time, " Ahmad told me. "Also, if you have someone that's willing to go with you, have them help you find what you're looking for," he added. Ahmad's trusty sidekick is his younger brother who helps him spot Ralph Lauren polos.

When we got together for the photo shoot, I couldn't help but ask how he learned to coordinate pieces so well. He doesn't have a big secret, he just has an eye for things and really likes colors and patterns. After talking with him, I think the secret is that he's simply passionate about dressing well - he speaks so effortlessly of style and fashion and is totally comfortable doing his own thing. "I just wear what feels good," he said.

In addition to polos, Ahmad's favorite thing to thrift is blazers. He buys them for $4-5 and then gets them tailored for $15. He also makes his own pocket squares (I thought they were called  handkerchiefs) by purchasing scarves or old shirts from the thrift store and them cutting them down to size. Thrifty and crafty.
{Formal look: Thrifted pants $3 / Thrifted blazer $12 part of a 3 piece suit}

Ahmad likes to mix his thrifted finds with investment pieces like shoes. I knew this was going to be a tough question, but I just had to ask: what's the best thing you've ever thrifted? He said it's a toss up between a pair of $10 Lebron James shoes (normally $180) or a $4 Ralph Lauren double breasted sailor blazer with gold buttons (normally $120).

My favorite? The socks. Hands down.