Monthly Archives: October 2014

Recap: Boston College Prepster Meet & Greet

Phew! What a week it has been already!

I flew back from Boston on Sunday and headed straight into a scheduled-filled day. I’ve also been getting ready this week for my trip to New York and listening to Taylor Swift’s 1989 on repeat (true story) so apologies as things have been a little quiet on H&T.

As you might know, I hosted Carly’s Meet & Greet in Boston last weekend at the Tucker Blair showroom. It was my first trip to Boston and a wonderful one it was. We stayed in historic Back Bay at the Lenox Hotel and I had just enough time to explore the city too.

I flew up on Friday evening and went straight to a fall cocktail soiree that was hosted by Carly’s sweet childhood friends. We woke up early on Saturday morning for blowouts courtesy of Drybar – (an equally-favorite activity of both Carly and I). After our Drybar date, there was just enough time to stop at a local spot – Flour for breakfast sandwiches and more coffee (they even had gluten free options so I was in heaven and very full, ha!).

After a quick change at the hotel, we hustled over to Tucker Blair‘s sunny showroom in Beacon Hill to set up. I worked with a variety of vendors on the Meet & Greet so that we would have plenty of favors for readers to take home. Personalized “live your dreams” pencils, scalloped coasters and napkins, custom prints, card cases, cake pops, coffee and more!


It was so nice to meet everyone and learn that so many College Prepster readers are also H&T ones.

After the event, I caught up with Michelle and Kerrie who I finally got to meet in real life over wine and cheese at 75 Chestnut. Then Carly and I headed to dinner with friends in the South End at Stella (lots of gluten free options there too – yum!).

When we arrived back at the Lenox, we were spoiled (and surprised) with late-night sundaes in our room along with sparkling water and diet coke (obviously for me).

Special thank you again to Tucker Blair, Wedding Paper Divas, Tiny Prints, Ame & Lulu, Dani for the prints and Carly’s sweet mom for working with me on my cake pop vision!

After my NYC trip this weekend, I will be prepping for holiday H&T workshops next weekend at the Cooking & Entertaining Show in DC! I hope you can stop by on Saturday, November 8th or Sunday, November 9th. I’m also super excited to see Mr. Bobby Flay on Sunday. My workshop is included in the general admission price so get your tickets here soon!

In other news, H&T is getting a little “facelift” soon so stay tuned over the next few weeks for some exciting changes! And for the latest, be sure to follow along on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.

Happy almost Halloween!

Fall Inspired Brunch Party

The past few weeks, I’ve been doing a lot of hosting, toasting and traveling. Perhaps H&T needs a name change? (kidding!) After I returned home from my Homestead trip, I spent the next week prepping for fall work events and a fall-inspired brunch.

I co-hosted the brunch with my good friend Cori Sue at my house in Georgetown. After much discussion and re-scheduling the past few months, we finally found a Sunday that worked for the both of us and got to work on the details.

First & foremost, the menu. I worked with my friends at DC Taste to come up with a custom menu for the eight of us. We made sure to include the #basic elements of fall from pumpkin to apples and just about everything in between. It was nothing short of delicious and some of the items were even made gluten free for yours truly.

The Menu:

Scrambled Eggs with Spinach, Manchego & Brie

Mini Pumpkin Pancakes with Nutella filling & Maple Syrup

Apricot + Sage Glazed Sausage Links

Fresh Chopped Fruit Salad

Mini Fried Chicken + Sweet Potato Waffles

Maple-Glazed Bacon

Caramel Cinnamon Apple + Gingersnap Granola Yogurt Parfaits

Our friend Brie of Monumental Sweets also brought over some fall leave sugar cookies for everyone to indulge in (not that we didn’t have enough carbs to keep us full already). For beverages, we sipped on homemade apple cider (also from DC Taste), mimosas with Zardetto prosecco, hard sparkling apple cider from Eve’s Cider and freshly brewed coffee from Compass Coffee. There was also plenty of OJ and pellegrino to go around. I sometimes assume that just because I enjoy a lot of drink options that everyone else does too!

I set the table with pumpkins (fresh and Pottery Barn bought), a golf leaf tablecloth, gold chargers, a white ceramic coffee pot and a white ceramic pumpkin full of coffee fixings.

We arranged fresh orange roses from Urbanstems and spider mums that I picked up at the store in vases around the house. Each place setting had a different Moon & Lola mug from their new mug shop and of course, a champagne glass to accompany them (rimmed with cinnamon sugar for the hard sparkling cider).

Every place setting also had a custom Rewined champagne candle with either Cori Sue or I’s initials and the date on it (these would also be great customized bridesmaid gifts or wedding favors). I tied name cards to the candles as a favor for each guest to take home. Guests were also given a custom October print and thank you note from the hostesses. Dani from Drafts & Crafts worked on all the prints for us – aren’t they beautiful?

Special thank you again to all our partners on this brunch and our lovely friends for joining us.

Hopefully this will inspire a fall menu or party of your own!

I’m off to Boston today and hope to meet some of you with Carly tomorrow at our event.

It’s not too late to RSVP!

The Homestead Recap: Fall Dinner Attire

This week I’m sharing part two of my Homestead fall trip with the girls plus a new fall outfit post! If you missed part one last week, catch up on it here.

Since we had planned on being outdoors for shooting on Sunday, the first half of our trip was far more relaxing. After dining at Jefferson’s on Friday evening, we woke up early to have breakfast in the Main Dining Room and then headed to the spa for a day of much-needed relaxation.

My girlfriends and I enjoyed the Homestead’s Spa Garden and Aqua Thermal Suite. I was booked for a mini massage and facial. Truth be told, I don’t often book massages because I usually end up feeling light-headed and dizzy after (poor me, I know). However, the Initial Touch massage was absolutely perfect, not too intense and a great way to relax my way into the Purifying Facial. The facial left me with a glow all weekend and the smoothest skin (take a look at all their spa treatments here).

The staff at the spa could not of been more accommodating, welcoming and professional. They gave us individual tours of the space and made sure we had lockers, over-sized comfy robes and slippers.

We first headed out to the Spa Garden which includes private cabanas, a firepit, historic hot springs, the River Reflexology Walk (my fave), whirlpools and a regular pool plus plenty of comfortable lounging furniture and fountains. It was seriously a little slice of heaven tucked into the mountains surrounded by beautiful fall trees. I stood on the balcony off the relaxation room (aka where you relax with tea before appointments) that overlooks the spa garden and took it all in. It’s safe to say I considered myself to be extremely #blessed that weekend.

After treating ourselves to some time in the garden, we headed inside to the Aqua Thermal Suite for some more R&R. The what? Ha! The suite is complete with experimental showers (Arctic Mist, Atlantic Storm or a Caribbean Storm to be specific). You seriously feel like you’re in the midst of one of those storms once inside. There is also an herbal cocoon room that is exactly what is sounds like – you can post up in a steamroom-like atmosphere into a little cocoon space and relax your muscles. With that being said, there is also a aromatic steam room, a room called the chill and last but not least, the thermal heated loungers. These lounge chairs are heated and designed to help you relax while enjoying scenic visuals. We posted up there for quite a bit before heading to our appointments and the showers to get ready for dinner.

After getting ready, we enjoyed a bottle of bubbly and wine on the front porch. I paired my new fall Sail to Sable silk dress with a leopard belt (#printsonprints), one of my favorite Blair Ritchey clutches and Hunter boots (it was a rainy weekend). I changed into flats before we headed off to dine. Perfect ending to a wonderful stay at The Homestead!

Dress: Sail to Sable c/o // Shoes: Hunter Boots & Off Broadway c/o // Clutch: Blair Ritchey c/o (ON SALE) // Belt: Target (similar here) // Coat: Burberry (similar here) // Earrings: Kendra Scott c/o // Bracelets: Kendra Scott c/o, J.Crew & J.Crew (similar here) // Sunnies: Karen Walker // Lips: Beautycounter Lip Sheer in Plum c/o 

{Special thank you to The Omni Homestead for graciously hosting us. Dining, spa services and activities were also c/o*}

Stay tuned for a fall brunch post + I’m headed to Boston with Carly soon! RSVP for the Meet & Greet at Tucker Blair here!

Boston Meet & Greet with The College Prepster

 Exciting NEWS!

I am headed to Boston next weekend to host a Meet & Greet with my good friend Carly of the College Prepster. We have both been tweeting about this event lately so I’m excited to finally share the details with you!

As many of you might know, Carly and I both grew up in Tampa and met once in DC while she was at Georgetown. We always make time for NYC brunches, Tampa lattes (preferably nutella) and Drybar blowout dates. She has been such a great support to H&T over the past year as well.

Earlier this year, I also hosted a DC Meet & Greet in Georgetown and we had such a great time that we wanted to do it again – in another city. If you missed that event – be sure to check out my DC recap and hers here to get an idea of what it’s like.

This will also mark my first official trip to Boston – I have planned many events there and worked with vendors but never made the trip myself. Thus, I am equally excited to explore the city with Carly and some of my faves.

We will be hosting at the Tucker Blair Showroom and I don’t think it could be a more perfect space. RSVP below to join us for treats & shopping. I look forward to meeting y’all!


P.S. Have any local spots you love? Send my way! AND if you can’t attend in Boston – be sure to follow us along on insta (@bannc + @carly)!

Stay tuned for the second part of my Homestead trip too!

The Homestead Recap: Fall Shooting Attire

This past weekend I went on another road trip (courtesy of GM) with some of my girl friends. We left DC early on Friday afternoon for a 4 hour trip through the mountains to the gorgeous Omni Homestead Resort & Spa in Hot Springs, Virginia (#BACxHTTravels). Today is the first in a two part series of my trip recap complete with an outfit post for each.

For those of you that haven’t been to The Homestead before, it is truly a special place and one of my favorite getaways near the DC area. It dates back to 1766 and its history is rich and full of presidential stays and campfire tales (I took the history tour, duh). Having also gone to school in Virginia, it was always a popular vacation spot among my friends and their families.

I love how close it is still to DC but you feel like you’re lifetimes away tucked into a small town that revolves around the resort. (With lots of winding roads to get there, trust me!) Before last weekend, I had only visited in the summer months but it is most certainly a four season resort with a newly renovated spa (more on that in part 2), pools, shops, restaurants and just about every outdoor and indoor activity that you can imagine.

From the moment we arrived, southern hospitality was at its all-time finest. Darien, the most southern speaking bellman I have ever met, greeted us with a smile and helped us settle into our room with our dozens of totes and bags. They were also gracious enough to host the girls and I in a lovely premier room with a view of the picturesque iconic front lawn. We dined each morning in the Main Dining Room for breakfast – piling our plates just a tad too high (I think I lived off cheese grits that weekend). We indulged in fine dining and specialty cocktails (Virginia Julep for me – whoops! #toasting) at Jefferson’s restaurant for dinner, which was also newly renovated from my last stay.

I am going a little backward today and recapping our spa day tomorrow but we also had skeet shooting set up for us on Sunday. Unfortunately, mother nature had other plans (rain, rain go away) but we still were able to head up to the world famous Gun Club and meet the staff and give them a laugh (or two) with our photo shoot.

 I am pretty much obsessed with puffer vests this and every season so this gingham one is no different. Since I was dressed for shooting, it was also helpful to have a little bit of padding (I normally bruise – epp!). It was super chilly in the mountains and this cashmere sweater was the perfect piece to pair under my vest complete with comfortable jeans and my new booties. I added the earrings for a pop of color and kept other jewelry to a minimum. (I was supposed to be shooting afterall – oh and don’t mind my sunnies – I wasn’t about to let the rain ruin our party even with umbrella in hand). This outfit would also be perfect for a fall party, BBQ and the like.

Puffer Vest: J.Crew Factory // Sweater: Two Bees Cashmere c/o (also at Tuckernuck) // Jeans: James Jeans c/o // Earrings: Kendra Scott c/o // Necklaces: Kendra Scott & Gorjana c/o // Bracelet: T. Audrey c/o // Booties: Off Broadway c/o // Sunnies: Karen Walker // Lips: Beautycounter Lip Sheer in Plum c/o

Shop my look below!

P. S. That last shot with the hands on hip was a blooper but I kept it anyway! Thank you to my sweet friend Brie for the photos!

Stay tuned for another trip post and outfit!