summer is officially upon us, and with hot weather comes more opportunities to lounge with my friends on my new back patio or by the pool. we created an assortment of 3 lemonades that are perfect for summer entertaining. we paired them with blue diamond sriracha flavored almonds (which are the best new spicy addition to the snack world!) and watermelon which was delicious and a great alternative to setting out a bowl of chips.
Here is a simple lemonade recipe that can easily be adjusted to your tastes. I love how versatile this is and can be swapped with your favorite take on it. We made three flavors – thyme, watermelon and cucumber mint. Start with a base lemonade recipe and mix in a large pitcher with ice.
• 3 cups cold water
• 1 cup fresh lemon juice
• 1/2 cup sugar
• For a watermelon lemonade, chop and remove the rind of half a large watermelon. In a blender blend for about 20-30 seconds or until smooth. Strain liquid through a strainer in a large bowl and add 1/2 cup of sugar. Add the watermelon juice to the base lemonade recipe. You can adjust the sugar amount according to how sweet your watermelon is. Garnish with lemon slices.
• For a thyme lemonade, we started by making a simple syrup. Bring 1 cup of water and 1 cup sugar to a boil or until a light syrup forms. Place the thyme in a separate bowl and pour the boiling syrup on top, let sit for about an hour or so (this syrup would be great in a gin cocktail too, if you’re looking for something spiked). Add the thyme syrup to your base lemonade recipe and enjoy with lots of ice and thyme as garnish.
• For a cucumber mint lemonade, peel two cucumbers and place in a blender with 2 large sprigs of mint and 1/4 cup of water. Blend until smooth. Strain the liquid until the pulp is separated. Since the cucumbers add no additional sweetness we added 1/2 sugar to the base lemonade recipe. Pour over an ice filled glass and garnish with cucumber slices and mint leaves.
voila! you will feel fancy serving these to your friends under the sun!
photos and styling by: ivan solis
want more food posts? click here!
this post is in partnership with blue diamond almonds. all opinions are my own.
gabriella sanchez made some fun inspirational desktops for us this week!
i love this one. keep doing what you love!
or how about some pretty colored shapes…get funky!
CLICK THROUGH TO DOWNLOAD ALL OF THE DESIGNS THIS WEEK!…
win a $600 gift code to spend at CueroandMor! they make amazing, minimal leather bags. their name says it all: cuero, the Spanish word for leather and Mør, the Danish word for well done. the duo handmake the bags in los angeles. aren’t they incredible?
i have the basket and it stores so much! it’s great for taking to the farmers market.
photos by: Bummy Koepenick
CLICK THROUGH TO ENTER THIS GIVEAWAY AND REDEEM DISCOUNT…
one of my FAVORITE things to do is entertain. there’s not much that makes me happier than a night with friends laughing and eating good food together. we have been gathering quite a bit now that the summer weather is perfect in the evenings, rotating who’s house we’re eating at. jesse’s roof, victoria’s backyard, jen’s patio…it’s been so nice to eat outside! i’ve been wanting to make my awkward long hallway in the back of my place into something that felt cozy and almost like an extension of my home. considering it’s mostly covered it almost does feel like an extra room now!
here’s the before and after and the little party we threw with williams-sonoma and visa checkout to celebrate. visa created an easy way to safely navigate checkout from any devices with just a few clicks so that you can spend less time online and more time hanging out on your patio drinking margaritas (which is always a win in my book)!
first off, my washer and dryer and a whole bunch of junk i never use lives back there, so the first step was to declutter. because the hallway is so long, i wanted to focus on only half of it for now (and maybe put a table on that other side eventually and build a cabinet for my washer and dryer) we hung a compression rod and a few of my favorite white linen curtains to create a separation, but also make it easy to access the other side. now it’s not a huge space, but plenty big to have 4-6 friends over. we scrubbed the floors the best we could, and laid down a bunch of vintage rugs that overlap each other and create a beautiful array of color.
CLICK THROUGH TO SEE THE WHOLE POST…
this week i’ve been feeling really positive about the health challenge. we are in our 5th week now and i’m seeing changes both mentally and physically…i’m even working out in my studio, which i never thought would happen!
joanie: it feels like we’ve been working out everywhere this week! we’ve been prepping a lot of events and photoshoots so we’re squeezing in a little exercise whenever we can. walking to lunch instead of driving, taking time between e-mails to practice our yoga poses in the studio, running up and down the stairs as we unload from the car, parking a little further away when i’m running errands, etc. if you move with intention those things can get your heart rate up fast.
bri: luckily after some physical therapy and switching up some of my workouts, my ankle/knee is on the mend and i’ve been able to continue working out. i’ve really noticed a shift within myself after a month of consistently working out…like i almost need it as part of my routine. dare i say, i even crave it & look forward to it. that is such a big change for me mentally, and i feel really happy about it.
i’ve been sticking to bar method and strength yoga for now, and i’m working up the nerve to try another spin class. the last time i tried one i thought i was going to die right there and then. everyone raves about it though, so i think i gotta give it another shot. we also haven’t find the right pool in LA to just freely exercise, but we really want to! i’m going to vegas this weekend with my sister and dad for father’s day, and they both like to work out. hopefully the hotel has a gym!
after seeing the physical trainer i have realized how tight the muscles in my legs are. my calves and IT band are probably the worst areas. i’ve been learning exercises to do to strengthen the muscles in my legs and protect my joints in the future. i just ordered a foam roller to relieve some tension, a large gym ball and 3 pound weights for home workouts, a small lacrosse ball to roll my foot over and get the knots out, and a few resistance bands for leg exercises at home. these will be great for days that i can’t make it to a workout class due to my schedule.
in these four and a half weeks, my flexibility has already increased a ton, and i’ve been noticing my legs and butt feeling a little harder which i’m not mad at. i also gotta say, as someone who deals with anxiety, this area of my life is drastically improving. i find myself feeling calm and happier more days than not.
something we have noticed is how hard it STILL is for us to maintain a healthy diet when there are so many social events, meetings, parties or girls nights. i personally find it very very challenging to say no to the food on the appetizer table or the drinks at the bar. but along the way, we’ve stuck to a few tips that DO make it a little easier…
CLICK THROUGH TO SEE THE WHOLE POST…