Wanderlust Travel // The French Countryside

I've come down with a bad case of wanderlust and have about five different trips I'm planning in my mind. I've alway loved traveling, and as I've gotten older my desire to explore foreign lands has grown greater and greater. I'm a planner by nature, and find half the fun of traveling is researching, planning, and arranging the best trip possible. I make intricate google maps and itineraries (learn how to create a custom google map itinerary here), spend hours pouring over guide books and internet travel forums, and talk to as many people as possible to make sure we hit the best places to see, things to do, and restaurants while in a new destination. 

One of the main destinations stirring my wanderlust like crazy is the Loire Valley and the Alsace villages in the east and north east of France, respectively. While I love visiting cities when I travel, I really try to seek out smaller towns and villages (I think it has something to do with living in one of the biggest cities in the world). I love Paris and have been many times, but am dying to go to the French countryside. It would be a dream to hop from chateau to chateau in the Loire Valley, and then drive north to explore the fairytale villages of the Alsace region. I mean how incredibly dreamy are these photos?! I'm sharing my itinerary wish list and dream travel wardrobe below.

My Dream Itinerary:

Stay: Le Chambard in the Alsace region and Domaine des Hauts de Loire
Do: Visit lots of Chateaus and visit lots of wineries
See: Hop from charming village to charming village in the Alsace region
Eat: Cafe de la promenade in Bourgueil and all the boulangeries

My Dream Wardrobe:

dress // skirt // tee // hat // sunnies // clutch // heels // flats

images via one // two // three // four // five // six // seven // eight

Food // Linguine with Green Olive Sauce

I've been focusing so much on fashion lately, I want to bring the "parm" back into Pearls and Parm! I love to cook, and started this blog to share my two passions (fashion and food) but lately have been slacking in the cooking department. Between busy days at a new job, evening exercise classes, and trying to keep up a social life, the last thing I want to do when I finally get home is be creative in the kitchen. It's just too easy to click in an order on Seamless! I'm trying to get better at cooking again and have been gathering up recipes I want to try. I recently made this amazing pasta dish and just have to share it with you all!

Man oh man was this dish good. I wasn't immediately drawn to it when I saw it on Bon Appétit's website, but it was truly amazing! It's a nice little twist on a classic pasta with pesto dish. The flavors are bright and scream "spring" to me. It's relatively simple to make, and you can easily double or reduce the recipe to fit your needs (I made the full recipe and had leftovers). The uniqueness of this dish would be perfect for a dinner party... pretty simple to prep and cook, but a really interesting and impressive dish! Top with tons of parm and you have yourself an amazing dinner!

From Bon Appétit

Ingredients (serves 4):

1 tablespoon plus ½ cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
  • Kosher salt and black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
  • 12 ounces linguine 
  • 4 oil-packed anchovy fillets (you can leave out if you'd like, but try not to!)
  • 1 small garlic clove
  • 1 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • ½ cup chopped fresh basil
  • 1 cup green olives, pitted, halved
  • 3 tablespoons drained capers
  • ½ cup Parmesan, finely grated, plus more for serving
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

  • Heat 1 Tbsp. oil in a medium skillet over medium heat and cook panko, stirring, until golden, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper; transfer to paper towels to drain and toss with dill and lemon zest.
  • Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until al dente. Drain, reserving ½ cup pasta cooking liquid.
  • Meanwhile, mash anchovies and garlic to a paste on a cutting board with the side of a chef’s knife. Combine with parsley, basil, and half of olives and capers in a large bowl. Chop remaining olives and capers and add to bowl, along with remaining ½ cup oil. Mix well; season sauce with salt and pepper.
  • Add pasta and ¼ cup reserved pasta cooking liquid to sauce. Toss, adding Parmesan a bit at a time, along with more pasta cooking liquid as needed, until sauce coats pasta. Add lemon juice; season with salt and pepper.
  • Serve pasta topped with panko and more Parmesan. Enjoy!
Do you have any favorite spring recipes? I'm compiling new dishes to try and would love to hear!

Fashion // Two Affordable Spring Staples

Two wardrobe staples immediately come to mind when I think of spring fashion... trench coats and transitional dresses. The trench and dress I'm sporting here are two pieces that can be mixed and matched all season long. Not only are these wear-all-the-time classic items, their prices are right on point for all my girls on a budget, dress is under $100 and the trench is under $150.

I love that this dress is so timeless. It's a flattering fit and flare shape, classic navy color, and its short sleeves are perfect for spring. I've worn it to work with a blazer, and wore it for Easter brunch with my family (these pictures are from that day). This trench is the first one I've owned, and I'm so happy with it! It's a different material than a lot of trenches out there (not waterproof) but it's made of such soft material. I love the color and the relaxed fit. The under $150 price tag made this coat a no-brainer for me. I know I'll be wearing it all spring (and in the early fall too) with a wide range of outfits.

Sizing tips: I sized up in the dress for a more comfortable/work appropriate fit (wearing a M) and sized down in the trench (wearing a XS)

dress (under $70)  // trench // necklace // mules (old, similar) // bag (chanel, similar)

Weekend // Link Roundup

Fashion // Easter Dresses

Sharing some Easter dress inspiration below! Lots of pretty frocks at all different price points.
one (under $30!) // two (Easter egg colors!) // three // four
five (under $35!) // six // seven  (love the tie) // eight

Fashion // Stripes and Scarves

I went up to Buttermilk Falls Inn & Spa this weekend to check out their restaurant, Henry's. I arrived right at golden hour, and had to take advantage of the gorgeous scenery and lighting! This outfit just screams early spring to me... stripes, a beautiful patterned silk scarf, and bright fun flats. I recently purchased this top and absolutely love it! You can't really tell in the photos, but not only is it striped, it has little pom-poms along the bottom too! I love the fit of it, relaxed and a little slouchy. I can see it being perfect with bright colored chino shorts in the summer.

striped pom-pom shirt // scarf (older Hèrmes, similar options below) // flats // jeans (best. ever.)

I love the combo of stripes and a patterned silk scarf. I'm sharing some great options in the widget below!

Weekend // Link Roundup

Tips // Starting a New Job

I mentioned here that I recently got a new job. It was a really really really tough decision. Without going too deep into the story, I basically had a realization that a different career path (a related career, but a little different) was a better fit for me. I had been at my previous job for four years and had interned there. Change of any kind can be tough, but this was one of the hardest changes for me. My office for the past four years was like a second home (I probably spent more time there than at my actual home!) and I loved my team, my bosses, and my company. Despite being so comfortable and loving my job, I knew that if I wanted to make a career change, the time was now... so I made the leap. I've been at my new company for about three weeks now and things are going great!

Since I just went through the process of starting over at a new company, I want to share what I've learned. These tips are relevant to anyone starting a new job, thinking about finding a new job, and recent grads about to set off on their career path. I'm by no means a career coach, I'm just hoping some of the thoughts and realizations I've had during this process will be helpful to others in similar situations.

Before you start, fully understand what you're in for
It doesn't look good to leave a job early on, so make certain you'll be happy in the role for at least a year. Ensure you completely understand what your job duties will be, what your boss will expect of you, and how progress will be measured. Ask about typical office hours, overtime work, the office dress code, and the paid time off policy. Even if you've been looking for a job for months and are so ready to start somewhere, you need to take time to reflect and make sure it's a good fit.

Treat the first few months like an audition
Congratulations, you got the job! You clearly made a great impression and your boss thought you were the most qualified candidate... but you still have to make a great first impression in the office. Try to get in before your boss and stay until after she leaves, set up time to meet individually with your co-workers to learn everyone's job function, take all training courses offered, and set up google alerts for your company and competitors to keep updated on industry news. Once you've established yourself as the great employee you are, you can loosen things up a bit (take a slightly longer lunch, shift your hours, etc).

Don't be afraid to ask for help
It's difficult starting somewhere new and learning the way things are done. Everyone understands you're new (they've been in your shoes before!) so don't be afraid to ask for help. I used to hate admitting I didn't know how to do something, but now I've learned that it's WAY better to ask for help rather than screw something up. 

Map out your first three months
You'll likely meet with your boss the first or second day to go over job duties and what expectations are. You'll probably feel overwhelmed... but you could also feel a little slow. The beginning of a new job can be weird because you're learning so much but not usually diving into projects. Take a calendar and map out your first three months on the job. Pencil in training sessions, schedule project start dates, and set progress updates with your boss. Keep yourself on schedule to ensure you're accomplishing what you want and starting strong!

Anyone else have new job tips to share? I'm all ears!

Fashion // Five Must-Have Shoes for Spring

Getting your spring shopping done? Here's a little guide to what I think are the five most important types of shoes for spring!

1. Colorful Flats
My Favorites: ONE // TWO // THREE
These are my favorite colorful flats. They're a bit of an investment, but I think worth the price. I have a couple pairs and absolutely love them. The little bow is such a fun detail! Whether you're going with a higher priced option or a more budget friendly pair, cute colorful flats are a staple for spring!

2. Lace-Up
My Favorites: ONE // TWO // THREE // FOUR
Whether you go with flats or heels, lace-up shoes are big this spring. 

3. Block Heel
My Favorites: ONE // TWO // THREE
Gotta love it when one of biggest heel trends for spring is a comfortable one!

4. Flat Sandals
My Favorites: ONE // TWO // THREE
These are not only my favorite flat sandals, but my favorite shoes ever. I wear them so much I usually need a new pair each year. I love that they come in so many cute colors and try to pick a new shade each time I replace a pair. 

5. Rain boots
My Favorites: ONE // TWO // THREE
Nothing brightens up a gloomy, rainy day like a fun pair of rain boots. I gravitate towards bright colored boots and am dying to get my hands on these fun ones!

Weekend // Link Roundup

Fashion // Spring Inspiration

We've been having unseasonably warm weather in NYC... and I have spring fever. Bad. I know that March always has a split personality weather-wise, so I don't want to get too ahead of myself, but it's certainly been nice wearing skirts sans tights and lighter jackets this week. I'm excited to start to slowly turn over my closet... pack away chunky sweaters and snow boots and start wearing flats and lighter dresses to work. I'm beginning to think about the spring clothing I already own and what peices I'd like to add this year. I want to be a thoughtful shopper and strategically add pieces that I can mix and match with old favorites. Below is some inspiration to help get you thinking about the warmer months ahead and some outfit combos you may want to try. I'll bet you already have some of these pieces waiting to come out of storage!

Not clothing, but nothing says spring like peonies! mint julep cup as a vase // image

Travel Guide // Rincon, Puerto Rico

Looking to experience something different in Puerto Rico? Head to the island's west coast for rustic charm and laid back vibes in the surfing town of Rincon! Here's my Darling Passport travel guide to  Rincon, Puerto Rico.

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Weekend // Link Roundup

I'm heading to Vermont this weekend with some friends to ski! I haven't been skiing yet this winter so I'm really looking forward to it. Hope you all have a great weekend! 

1. Today is the last day to score some major deals during Shopbop's spring sale! I wrote about my favorite picks here


While doing some research for my trip to Rincon, Puerto Rico, I came across gorgeous photos of pink water. When I found out the pink water was less than an hour from where I was staying, visiting it immediately went on my must-do list. I absolutely love the color pink and to see it in nature in such an unexpected and dreamy way was very intriguing.

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Fashion // Shopbop Spring Sale

The Shopbop site-wide spring sale is here! I absolutely LOVE this sale. Shopbop is my favorite clothing website, and they don't frequently have events like this (only twice a year, I believe). I've been sporting a lot of pieces I picked up on Shopbop recently... an adorable striped top, a super fun romper, a gorgeous bikini and this white off the shoulder dress that I wore after a day at the beach in Puerto Rico. With this sale the more you spend the more you save. Use code BIGEVENT16 to get 15% off of $250, 20% off of $500 or 25% off of $1000. This sale is the perfect time to get some items you've been eyeing for the upcoming spring and summer. Make sure you purchase fast, it ends March 5th! Shop some of my favorite items in the sale below!

bathing suit // skirt ($68!) // tassel earrings ($45!) // clutch // top (under $100!) // dress
wedges // bracelet // cut out shoulder dress // espadrilles (under $100!) // bag