As we are nearing the end of summer, all I can think about is the fact that cooler months are on the horizon (thank goodness!). DC has been a sweaty humid microwave for what honestly feels like forever. It's been tough being cooped up inside for much of the summer due to the excessive heatwave. I have definitely developed dog mom guilt because we haven't been able to take Dolly out on walks longer than 5 minutes for fear of her overheating. While I am certainly looking forward to the impending Fall season, I have still had many moments over the past few weeks (when not glued to the TV cheering on Simone Biles of course) to discover a few new favorite finds to share with you all today.
Healthy Water Bottles
In an effort to reduce my carbon footprint and add to my healthy living, I have been on a mission over the past month for the perfect water bottle. I know this sounds ridiculous, but it occurred to me one day while trying to shop for a water bottle on Amazon that I had no clue what I was looking for and what bottle provided the best value. I knew I didn't want a plastic bottle (for fear of chemical leaching, BPA, etc...), it needed to be practical/functional and fit my lifestyle. After surveying dozens of colleagues at work, all of my friends and family members, and reading way too many reviews I ended up purchasing two water bottles (which I would enthusiastically recommend to anyone).
The first is the oh so popular S'well. This is a double insulated aluminum water bottle that claims to keep cold drinks cold for 24 hours and hot drinks hot for 12 hours (I can vouch after testing both claims, this water bottle lives up to the hype). Keeping my drinks hot or cold while at work has been great because it has meant less trips to the kitchen for ice or additional hot water. In addition, I love the oh-so-chic color options offered for this water bottle (totally obsessed with the gold). Drawbacks to the S'well are the price and the fact that it isn't dishwasher safe.
The second bottle I purchased is the DRPP Water Bottle (a sister bottle to the BKR). This is a glass bottle that is wrapped in a silicone sleeve, which keeps it protected from shattering if dropped and provides you with a secure grip on the bottle. This water bottle is glass so it's free of any potential leaching issues, is dishwasher safe and slightly less expensive than the S'well. If I had to name drawbacks to the DRPP, it would be the inability to keep drinks ice cold for longer than a few hours.
Did you know that the gladiolus is the flower of August? Personally, I had no idea that this was the case but it actually makes sense now that I think about it as there seems to be an abundance of gladioli for sale in every local grocery and flower store. Naturally, it seems very fitting to highlight this gorgeous bloom as one of my favorite finds this month.
Gladioli are truly gorgeous flowers that have some serious presence. I love how hearty they are and the added height they bring to a space. This flower comes in an array of vibrant colors, is relatively low maintenance to maintain and very inexpensive to purchase. Not kidding- the gladioli pictured above in front of the window cost me a grand total of $3.99 at my local grocery store the other day. Love love love!
Die Cut Coasters
Caspari is certainly a go to for me when it comes to finding fab cocktail napkins, tapers, guest towels and other entertaining essentials, but recently I discovered their new line of die cut coasters and am completely hooked! These coasters are offered in an array of patterns, with a laminated top to prevent any warping caused by a sweaty glass and a fabric lined bottom to prevent any scratching on tabletop surfaces. A set of 4 coaster's cost about $14 and let me just say that they are worth every penny! Functional and unique, these coasters are a current favorite in my home.
Pimento cheese is one of my go to menu items lately. This southern favorite makes for a delicious hors d'oeuvre spread atop a thin cracker and garnished with either fresh thyme leaves, crispy bacon pieces or even a light sprinkle of toasted pecans. It also makes for an excellent grilled cheese sandwich and is super easy to make! I am a huge fan of Southern Living's recipe for pimento cheese, but if you don't have time to whip up a homemade batch of this delicious spread, Whole Foods offers three different types of pimento cheese spreads that are out of this world! Pimento cheese never fails to be a crowd pleaser with my guests and it has been a great way to shake up my typical entertaining repertoire in recent months.