Five Shots for Friday

Friday, November 30, 2012

Tomorrow. It’s here. The SHOT OF BRANDI HOLIDAY GIFT A DAY posting! Like a good elf, I’ve been researching, book marking and writing posts for the entire month of December of gifts for a variety of friends, family members and kids. I’m super excited about some of these items!

(photo from Shot of Brandi* Google analytics)

Anyways, here’s five links to keep you occupied today.
·       Um, wow. Hey 59 People that stumbled on my blog looking for images of Mario Lemieux’s new house because of this past post! Surprise! I don’t have any hockey scoop for you – just glitter, wine and crafts around these parts.  (And yes, I’m watching you people. I have analytics on this blog, what, what!)
·       Rentable glitter carpet for events? Your welcome.
·       32 Best Memes of 2012
·       Having a bad day? Check out Daily Odd Compliment (thanks, sometimes reader Britta)
·       Why wasn’t there a Pro Wrestler in the School of Journalism when I was at WVU?!
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Nailed It!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Happy Nail-vember Ladies (or men-who-like-manicures-that-shall-not-be-named)!

If seeing all of those nail shots on Pinterest wasn’t enough – (you know, the ones that show a woman’s hand holding a bottle of nail polish) - now there is a new trend of people celebrating all things nails in November (aka Nail-vember!). Maybe it’s just a way for girls to celebrate something other than Mo’vember OR it’s the new trend of mashing up works (Friendsgiving and marketing campaigns that I’ll refuse to name). Regardless, I’m jumping on this bandwagon and showing you my favorite nail items.

Disclaimer: I’ve probably had less than 10 or 15 manicures in my life. I’m in no ways a nail expert, so this post is likely for the nail novices – or those that just slap on some color on a weekly basis (if that).


·       Remember those Advent calendars that you had as a kid? Well Ciate stepped up that game with 24 days of mini polishes.
·       I always tend to find myself spending time in the airport looking at my awful nails. So I typically end up purchasing one of these nail files from The Body Shop. These things seriously last forever. I have one at my desk from 2010. 
·       I love myself a good Kate Spade product and this nail set is no exception. I think it’s perfect for what I call the mullet girl. Business (in the front) and likes to party (in the back) – you get some good day/night shades.
·       For years I was a straight OPI girl, but now I’m totally Essie. For me, OPI takes FOREVER to dry. Check out Essie here and a post that I wrote about fun ways to use Essie as a party favor!
·       If you can’t escape OPI, try the “Nailed It” collection of its Top 10 colors.
·       I’ve also been dabbling in luxury lacquer from Deborah Lippmann. The fun names of these shades make for great gifts – “Bring on the Bling” for the newly engaged gal, “Swagga Like Us” for your fly friend, and the True Blood set for the vamp obsessed.
·       In regards to keeping those hands super soft, I’m partial to Bliss products. They last forever and keep your hands silky smooth!
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Do.It.All.Again - Five Shots for Friday

Friday, November 16, 2012

·       Yellowtail wine satisfies girls craving for glitterly products by adding some sparkle to its Sweet Red Roo wine!
·       Speaking of alcohol, maybe I need a little Gingerbread Kahlua in my hot chocolate?
·       A Rubix Cube Birthday Cake? This is awesome
·       Speaking of birthdays, Etsy now has GIFT CARDS! Whoot whoot!
·       I.Can’t.Get.Enough.Of.This.Party! LOVE the styling!
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Rat Tat Tat Tat

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Variations of this Tattoo Stand have been floating around the internets thanks to Pinterest. When I first laid eyes on this genius idea, I thought – I MUST recreate this ASAP in a future party!

My mind immediately went to a place like Oriental Trading to purchase faux tattoos, but then I stumbled about Tattly.

Seriously – this site is awesome. The tats are contemporary, stylish, cost-effective and above all removable! Forget a face painter, I need to find an excuse to host a party with a tattoo stand! Oh and that stand would be so easy to make out of a cardboard box. A college secret – if you go to Wal-mart late at night when they are re-stacking the shelves, sometimes they will give you some boxes before they throw them away!


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Monday, November 12, 2012

Turkey, stuffing, gravy (not for me), corn, pumpkin pie…aughhh the foods of Thanksgiving!

There’s a somewhat new trend out there called Friendsgiving – a pot luck among friends to celebrate Thanksgiving.

Shot of Brandi totally supports this concept. Yeah, making two turkeys can be a pain in the butt, but two Thanksgiving feasts is awesome! And it’s a way to get together with your friends before that hectic month that is December!

So I sold you and you want to host a Friendsgiving, right? Here are some décor and recipes you may want to incorporate!

Thankful Wall – use brown packing paper to create a wall for people to write what they are thankful for. Think of this as an offline Facebook wall!

Glitter Banner (you can totally make this)

 Turn the party into an opportunity to do good by collecting cans or donations for a local food bank!

·          Brussels Sprouts with Bacon
·       Sweet Potato Casserole
·       Apple Brandy Hot Toddies
·       Pumpkin Truffles

You could also host the party post-Thanksgiving – with the leftovers!
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Tuesday, November 06, 2012

I don’t care who you vote for…just vote.

Also, I just wanted to reflect on where I was four years ago.

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Sangria: Wine with Flair

Thursday, November 01, 2012

The Shiloh Grill in Pittsburgh is quickly becoming one of my favorite spots in the city. They have AMAZING lobster mac and cheese (and it’s still delish without the lobster!), a super rad bacon night in which you can just get a basket of bacon, a super sweet brunch that comes with a cocktail….and last, but certainly not least, it’s like one block away from the Mt. Washington view of the city – great for out of town guests!

Last November, I visited the grill with sometimes reader Brady’s brother and his fiancé Carli. On this trip, I ordered the Pumpkin Sangria. Let me tell you, this liquid concoction was TASTY!

I Googled the recipe, but found a similar one below to share with you all.

Oh and if you are in the Pittsburgh-area, after a rough fall…no, not season, I mean straight up fall at work that involved me face planting it on to the floor, I decided that I needed some Sangria tonight to help sooth my multiple rug burns. I discovered Max & Erma’s $8 pitches of Sangria on Thursdays. Let me tell you – this deal is WORTH IT. We squeezed at least 5, maybe 6 pint glasses out of that pitcher. To put things into perspective, a normal glass of Sangria is $6. DEAL! (Thanks for the big straw, Critus – I think he sensed I was having a rough day). Vampire eyes not included. 

Pumpkin Sangria (reprinted from the Food Network)

6 servings

·         2 tablespoons sugar
·         1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
·         2 tablespoons maple syrup
·         Six 4 to 5-inch long cinnamon sticks, for garnish
·         6 pumpkin candies, for garnish, such as Brach's
·         1 bottle white wine, chilled
·         3 cups mango peach juice blend or tropical juice blend, chilled, such as V-8 Splash
·         1 cup pumpkin spice liqueur, chilled

·         In a small bowl, combine the sugar and pumpkin pie spice and mix until well combined. Transfer to a saucer. Add the maple syrup to a second saucer. Lightly dip the rims of 6 punch glasses into the maple syrup. Then dip the rims of the glasses into the spiced sugar.
·         Insert the cinnamon sticks into the bottom of each pumpkin candy and set aside.
·         In a pitcher, combine the wine, juice and pumpkin spice liqueur. Stir and pour into the rimmed glasses. Garnish with the pumpkin candy cinnamon sticks.
·         Cook's Note: If you cannot find pumpkin spice liqueur, combine 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice with 1 cup brandy in a container fitted with a lid. Shake vigorously and let sit for 1 day to infuse into the brandy

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