Cheery & Charming Shop Small, Shop Local Stroll – 12/15/2020

You all know how passionate I am about this city, especially my small town neighborhood of Federal Hill ever since I moved here 7 years ago. And, given the latest restrictions imposed upon Baltimore City, I’ve been racking my brain as I work on ways I can give back and support in lieu of these turbulent times.

So, introducing the, “Cheery & Charming Federal Hill Shop Small, Shop Local Stroll,” happening Tuesday, December 15th from 4 – 7PM !!!


I am so, so, SOOOOO excited and grateful for the local businesses that eagerly jumped on board for this super fun and creative way to drive traffic to local businesses in our neighborhood right before the holidays. Help me to make their holiday season EVEN better!

(not to worry – all capacity guidelines, masks, and social distancing to be followed.) #MaskOnMaryland

Need last minute gifts for the holidays?

A bite to eat?

And excuse to get out of the house?

A special treat for yourself?

Support local THIS Tuesday and be entered to win an AWESOME prize for doing so!!

HOW IT WORKS:
1. Visit the participating business in the images below
2. Shop (or EAT) til you drop!
3. For every visit and/or purchase you make, receive a raffle ticket to the GRAND PRIZE GIVEAWAY
4. GRAND PRIZE GIVEAWAY includes a basket containing goodies from all of the participating businesses, valued at est. $250+.

Check out the gallery of images above to get the full scoop, as well as all the safety rules and regulations. PLUS – – what better way to make the holidays a little warmer this year than supporting your favorite Fed Hill spots?!

Here’s the list of currently participating businesses (subject to add more):
101 Baltimore
Banditos
Berries by Quicha
Brightside Boutique
Cans Filling Station
Cheese Galore & More
Don’t Know Tavern
Dulceology
Pandora’s Box Boutique
Phina’s Fine Linens
Pizza di Joey
Rowhouse Grille
Taco Love Grill at Cross Street
The Book Escape
Wayward Smokehouse

Questions?! Reach out to me!
And please, PLEASE share!!
Let’s make this event one for these incredible businesses to remember!!!

xoxox
Brittany

Positive Thoughts + Friday Fall Fashion Vibes

Time to kick back – – it’s FRIDAYYYY !!! 

️Feeling my usual positive self this gorgeous, chilly Fall morning after a walk around Federal Hill Park with my favorite fur babies and thought I’d share where my thoughts wandered this morning . . .

“The point is not to pay back kindness, but to pass it on” – Julia Alvarez

Treat others how you wish to be treated, always be kinder than you feel, and do not judge unless you’ve walked a mile in someone else’s shoes, taking everyone at face value & giving everyone an equal chance. 

I don’t believe in ‘reputations,’ I believe in actions – –  the unique efforts each individual places forth towards another being. No categorizations, no ‘guilty by association,’ just simply taking each person for who and what they are. 

I’m exhausted of those living in glass houses and not cleaning their windows. If you are kind to me, I am kind to you. Appreciate each other for their abilities, differences, beauty & uniqueness. 

Support & be happy for others enjoying their success. Life is an echo – what you send out, comes back; what you sow, you reap; what you see in others, exists in you.  Lead by example. Be the YOU you’d want to know. 

How do you pass on kindness to others? Tell me in the comments!

#thoughtsforbeginningyourweekend 

Cheers, all!
xoxox
Brittany

A Little Inspo on Finding Inner Peace During These Turbulent Times . . .

I hope you embrace it all, my beautiful friend: your body, your heart, your mind, your dreams . . .

I hope you learn to stand up for yourself even if your voice shakes. I hope you learn to be proud of your body and your mind even if they have imperfections . . .

Embrace yourself inside and out, imperfections and all.

Let go of the images of who you thought you should be, and start looking at all of the beautiful things that already are.

Because at the end of it all . . . Y O U have to be the first one to embrace yourself and everything that makes you so w o n d e r f u l l y you. 🌎✨⭐️💫💕☺️

Let’s be real when we regroup and say this year has been hard . . . REALLY hard. And, we would be fibbing to ourselves if we said it’s not going to get EVEN harder.

If you’re in the Baltimore City, Maryland area where we’re located, bars, restaurants, and indoor facilities in general are required to *almost* start over from the beginning and are required to reduce their capacity levels and active guests to 25% of their occupancies.

As some of you may, or may not, know . . . myself and my hubby own a local bar & restaurant in the small town of Federal Hill in Baltimore City, MD (yes, – for those of you that know me . . . can you believe I’ve fully evolved to being a CITY girl ?!?!).

It’s been both a challenging and uniting year for the two of us. Through the ups and downs, I think we’ve almost found strength in not only those that are going through similar battles and challenges with us, but also the incredible and supportive community that surround and supports us.

One thing I can never be thankful ENOUGH for . . . are the folks that have continued to tune in, follow, and support me on this crazy journey of ours (and how much I strive to maintain a normal perceived life and posting cadence!).

Know that I appreciate ALL of the love, ALL of the concern, ALL of the support, and am doing my best to continue and maintain a positive life perspective for sharing with you <3.

Fingers crossed that we push through this second round of the challenging road ahead and keep ourselves and our loves ones safe during these turbulent times.

Sending much, MUCH love to all reading –

xoxox
Brittany

P.S. just so you knowwwww…. you can shop this look and get direct links for so SO many others by following me on the @liketoknow.it shopping app @brittanyleighxo! 🛍🎀🎉

3 for $54 Yankee Candle Sale!

You heard that right – – it’s Fall candle season!

Beginning now and until October 4th, you can check out this section of Yankee Candle‘s website and select 3 LARGE TUMBLER candles for just $54 with code: 3LGOCT20 (reg $29.50/each).

What’s your favorite scent?

Spiced Pumpkin?

Warm and Cozy?

Crisp Campfire Apples?

My absolute, most-loved scent is the Clean Cotton here. I know . . . BOORRINNGGGG ! BUT – anything that can help make the house smell fresh and clean is clutch in my book!

What will you be stocking up on? Hurry – their best scents go fast!!

xoxo

Brittany

P.S. Puppies approve of them too 😉

How Do You Spell, “Love?”

Piglet: How do you spell “love” Pooh? 
Pooh: You don’t spell it, you feel it. 

💕💕💕 

Happy Valentines Day, y’all!!

Whether you’re spending the day loving your partner, significant other, family, girlfriends, or the most important – your true, real, unique, amazing & incredible dang self!

Enjoy it – smile, eat, dance, sing. Let all that you do be in love.

Eat that cookie.

Drink the rosé.

Snack on that chocolate.

Throw your sparkle everywhere.

photography by: Rachael Serra Photography

And most of all, do what makes YOU happy today – celebrate love in all the forms it comes. But, know one of the most valuable actions you can do today is to make someone else feel loved too. After all, love is simply a word until someone brings it to life and gives it meaning! You can put a price on the power of love.

❤

I’ll be spending mine with this hunka chunka burning STUD !!! Happy Valentines to my number one and favorite valentine – lucky for me, he makes every day, every date, every smile, every kiss, every adventure, another chance for my heart to skip a beat.

 PSSSST…. You can instantly shop my looks by following me on the LIKEtoKNOW.it shopping app http://liketk.it/2KkRP @liketoknow.it, or visiting my SHOP page!

Talk soon!
xoxox
Brittany

Foraging At Its Finest

I’ll be the first to admit …

I’m not the most ‘adventurous’ eater in town. So, I was a little nervous (but also SUPER excited) to try out Foraged: A Hyper-Seasonal Eatery in Hampden to celebrate our friend’s birthday! And, boy did I have ZERO clue what I was in for…

For ONE, I learned what foraging is! Turns out, Foraging is the act of finding and harvesting wild foods. Some call it “gathering.” It most commonly refers to mushroom hunting – who ever knew there was such a thing? However, I also learned that “mushroom hunting” is something only people practiced in the fine and delicate art of mushroom identification should engage in.

Onto TWO – the restaurant. Everything from the advertised hyper-seasonal apps and entrées to the cozy setting, UBER awesome service, courtesy of Nico Bustos, and secret dinosaur decor search (can you find them all?! 🦖🦕) was absolutely incredible. I’m not the best at food photography, so most definitely not going to even attempt in that arena, but earmarking this as a place for all to check out for sure!!!

🍄

P.S. check out that handsome crew – HAPPY BIRTHDAY MATT !!!

What are your secret restaurant spot recos?!
Talk soon!

xoxo
Brittany

Cheery & Charming Traveler’s Guide: 8 NEW Places to Visit in New York City

As always, New York was a whirlwind! Up and back in 2-days, via the Vermonter & Acela Express made for a jam-packed, fun and exciting adventure for our Valentine’s Day this year. Aside from my first time at Madison Square Gardens + seeing Billy Joel live, we covered a TON of ground and visited a slew of new spots!

Whenever I find fun, new spots, I’m always pressed to share! So, I’m quickly jotting down my top 7 favorite places we visited for any of you who may be looking for a cool, trendy or cozy new spot to check out next time you’re in the area!

  1. Hanoi House
    We had dinner here Thursday night and let me tell you – it was I-N-C-R-E-D-I-B-L-E. Placed appropriately on the historical, adventure seeking, 119 St. Mark’s Place, you’ll arrive in a (not-so-surprisingly-small), delicately quaint, romantically dimmed, intimate spot in East Village. But – don’t let the size fool you. Hanoi House is known for “The Absolute Best Pho in New York,” “The Absolute Best Octopus in New York,” “The Absolute Best Vietnamese Restaurants in New York,” and more. I mean . . . WOW!!! Once you’ve had a moment to take in the eloquent details, brace yourself as you’re about to be spoiled with a breathtaking, unbelievable, well-cultured, imaginative display of Vietnamese cuisine! From the Crispy Crab & Pork Spring rolls (Nem Ran), to the Spicy Octopus (Bach Tuoc Ca Ri) – delightfully displayed over roasted sweet potatoes, coconut curry, charred scallion and shishito peppers, to the Hanoi Style Beef Pho Soup (Pho Bac), – a classic 16-hr broth with heritage Black Angus filet mignon, brisket & rice noodles AND an add-on option of bone marrow (must have!) on the side, our dinner was simply divine. The only thing that will leave you feeling disappointed after this visit, is the wish that you could fit everything on the menu in your belly!
    P.S. make sure you get there early!! They don’t take reservations and the place was nearly filled upon our arrival, 15-minutes post their opening at 5:30.
    P.S.S. our dear friends own this place, so go. check. it. out. !!!
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  2. Joe & Pat’s Pizzeria NYC
    I don’t know about you, but I know that when I visit New York City, I’m not leaving until I’ve had a proper slize of za 😉
    Joe & Pat’s Pizzeria is more formally known in the Staten Island area of New York. Wanting to break in and make their presence known in the Manhattan area, they opened their NEW location at 168 1st Avenue. Priding themselves on a secret Neapolitan recipe for a special thin crust pizza that has made their restaurant famous, I was so glad to have enjoyed this gem during our trip! We sat at the antiquely pounded copper counter top on the corner of the bar and enjoyed catching up with friends and admiring the original, characteristic stained glass windows before, quite literally, demolishing our pizza. Looking for the perfect NY fold? You found it!! Can’t decide which kind to try when you visit? Psst… if you order a large, they allow you to do half and half! But, they also have a smaller, personal 10” option as well. Not to mention – the bartender and staff were  amazingly warm and welcoming, making for a fun, social lunch break on Friday!
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  3. C&B – East Village, Thompson Square Park
    I’ll keep this one short and sweet, just like this shop! Seriously one of the cutest little coffee shops in East Village! We stopped in for a quick espresso (always needed!) and loved seeing the kitchen staff live, in action, flipping, kneading and pounding their homemade dough!! I mean, you just can’t get that just anywhere in Baltimore! Plus, you can take your coffee/espresso/latte and enjoy a casual stroll around Thompson Square Park after, which is right across the street!
  4. Tacombi
    SALT! SALT! SALT! LOVED this Mexican spot we found on 267 Elizabeth Street. And come on … a old school, authentic Volkswagen Bus as the taco-making station?! We only stopped in for a quick taco (or two…) and kept on our exploring, but the atmosphere was so traditional and genuine, it’s definitely worth a visit and some cliché photos! P.S. the tacos were awesome too!
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  5. L’AMICO
    This is probably one of my favorite spots in NYC – although a little more ‘commercial,’ in feel, the atmosphere is to die for and this is going to sound weird, but I love their bathrooms! Haha! While separate male and female, the hand-washing station connects the two via a shared wash-sink area with a reflective, stained glass like mirror for separation. It’s a great spot for a casual happy hour, quick bite at the bar (they have amazing selection of appetizers, wood-burning pizzas, fresh pastas, and selections of charcuterie), or in our circumstance, a late night cap for topping off Saturday evening after the concert. We stayed in the hotel above it – The EVENTI, which I would TOTALLY recommend if you’re ever seeing a show at Madison Square Gardens. It was about a 5 minute walk from the concert!
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  6. BUA Bar
    Cute and friendly spot to stop to get a snack or drink beforehand if you try our Hanoi House! It’s right across the street and felt so intimate. The space is decorated with countless lit candles that grace spaces in the walls where bricks have intentionally been removed. Candles also delicately and artfully line random fashion behind the bar liquor bottles, shelving, and pretty much anywhere you look!
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  7. Westside Market
    Talk about a local food market!! I WISH we had something like this in our small town, Federal Hill! Then again, I get we may not have the same volume to sustain this type of operation 🙂 It felt like I had walked into the Costco-version of a market! Never-ending, colorful supply and variety of fruits, vegetables, sandwiches, deli meats, cheeses, traditional grocery, flowers and more! Super cool spot to stop by, take in the colorful spreads and patronize a local business (with some salty and sweet snacks while you’re there!)
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  8. The Pennsy Food Hall
    Last, but not least – and definitely not a big secret as it’s right above Penn Station, but this is a great, vibrant and convenient spot to grab-and-go a snack before you catch the train ride home. It’s more of an incubator-type feel with a variety of small eateries, so there’s a little something for everyone. From sushi, to tacos, to bar food, to sweet treats, ice cream and more! Plus, they sometimes have a DJ that slings throwback songs and top beats to get you boppin’ and grovin’!

Do you have any favorite spots or gems to share? I’d love to hear! Ping me in the comments below!

Talk soon!

xoxox
Brittany

I Did It All for the Cookies… NEW: Keto Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe

Being on a diet, a NEW diet at that – it’s natural for your sweet tooth to perk up! Especiallyyyyy when you’re telling yourself something is off limits. You just want it EVEN MORE. Amiright?!

Well. Say goodbye to those nasty cravings, because I have a 100% Keto approved chocolate chip cookie recipe for you to try! That’s right folks – I said C-H-O-C-O-L-A-T-E  C-H-I-P  C-O-O-K-I-E-S !! You don’t have to deprive yourself on every diet! These  cookies contain all the Keto necessities: coconut oil, butter, almond flour and . . . you guessed it . . . chocolate!!

For the purposes of the Keto diet, we’re choosing a 100% cacao baking chocolate bar, unsweetened. NOTE: By itself it’s extremely bitter, but mixed in with the other ingredients, it creates the perfect balance!

Keto Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup coconut oil, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup golden monk fruit sweetener OR sticky sweetener of choice
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1/2 tsp pink Himalayan salt
  • 3 cups almond flour
  • 3 oz. 100% cacao baking chocolate bar

Directions:

  1. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together coconut oil and butter.
  3. Next, add eggs and vanilla extract
  4. Add sticky sweetener of choice, baking soda, cream of tartar, and salt
  5. Slowly, while mixing, add almond flour to cookie mix
  6. In a separate bowl, microwave chocolate pieces until just barely soft. Use a utensil to separate chocolate pieces into smaller bits before transitioning to mix
  7. Pour chocolate pieces into bowl of dough and mix until combined
  8. Form dough into balls and place on cookie parchment paper
    REMEMBER: Allow room in between cookies for cookies to spread during baking
  9. Bake cookies for 18-20 minutes, until edges are golden brown.
  10. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely before serving.
  11. Enjoy!

Nutrition

Calories: 191  Fat: 18g  Carbohydrates: 11.5g (Net: 1.9g)  Protein: 4.3g

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Mamma Mia! NEW: Keto Italian Stuffed Meatball Recipe for the Books

For some, odd, I can’t-explain-it reason, I was so intimidated by the idea of making meatballs. I know . . . call me weird. But, it felt like everyone had their own “special” or “secret” recipe, sometimes dating back generations of family. BUT – it turns out, most of those recipes don’t fall within Keto diet guidelines anyway!

While traditional meatballs are not keto, I’m here to help you with an awesome, SUPER easy, Italian Stuffed Keto Meatball alternative.

Typically, meatballs contain bread/crumbs as their main ingredient. This helps the balls maintain their shape. The presence of bread is a direct keto violation, but here’s a solution! (don’t be scared away by the number of ingredients – you just end up combining everything together! 🙂 )

Servings: 4

Split equally into 4 portions

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 lbs Ground Beef
  • 1 tsp Oregano
  • 1/2 tsp Italian Seasoning
  • 2 tsp Garlic
  • 1/2 tsp Onion Powder
  • 3 tbsp Tomato Paste
  • 3 tbsp Flaxseed Meal
  • 2 Large Egg
  • 1/2 cup Mozzarella Cheese
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire Sauce
  • Salt & Pepper Sprinkled for Seasoning

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 400F
  • Mix meat and all other ingredients together
  • Form into meatballs
  • Lay on a foil covered baking sheet
  • Bake for 20 minutes
  • Serve over spinach with sprinkled mozzarella cheese on top
  • Enjoy!

Nutrition
Calories            594
Fats (g)              44.8
Protein (g)        36.8
Net Carbs (g)    3.8

Seriously… HOW FLIPPING SIMPLE?! Great for lunches on the go, hearty dinners and for satisfying your favorite Italian food cravings! And these are delicious . . . I PROMISE you!

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Give them a try and post your review/comments below 🙂

Talk soon!
xoxox
Brittany

 

What Did the Buffalo Say When His Son Left for College? . . . “Bison.” NEW Keto Recipe: Brown Butter Buffalo Bites

Okay, okay, okay, so there’s technically no “buffalo” in this recipe outside of the sauce (although there mayyyy be a recipe on that coming soon . . .  😉 ) BUT – in the meantime, who says you have to dine out to enjoy delicious cauli buffalo bites?! Now, you make them in 30 minutes – right from home!!

They’re the perfect 30-minute prep snack you can grab and go all week long, OR an awesome munchable addition to your Super Bowl spread in the coming weeks!

I’ve grown to LOVE  what some call the “ghost” version of broccoli, see hilarious meme below. There’s so many ways to get creative using this low carb potato substitute – even in place of noodles/rice. There are only 2.9 grams of net carbs in an entire cup of this clean veggie, making it a clear winner on a Keto diet!

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Keto Brown Butter Buffalo Bites

Ingredients:

  • 1 head of cauliflower (approx. 3 cups of florets)
  • 1/4 cup Frank’s Red Hot
  • 2 tbsp. Butter
  • 2 garlic cloves OR the equivalent minced
  • Pinch of salt

Directions:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 400F
  2. Melt butter in a small skillet on medium heat
  3. Bring to a simmer until browned. Meanwhile, cut your cauliflower into florets.
  4. Pour florets into a large bowl
  5. Add minced garlic to your melted butter and let simmer
  6. Remove the butter and garlic mixture and pour it over the cauliflower
  7. Add in the hot sauce and gently toss to coat thoroughly throughout
  8. Move the florets to a sheet pan
  9. Bake the cauliflower for 20 minutes
  10. Remove from the oven, transfer to a serving dish. Drizzle with remaining sauce.
  11. Garnish with crispy bacon and serve with ranch or accompanying sauce of your choice for dunking
  12. Enjoy!

Nutrition
Calories: 175  Fat: 11  Carbohydrates: 10  Protein: 4

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Did you like this recipe? I’d love to hear!
Email or tag a friend and share the Keto loveeee!

Talk soon!

xoxox
Brittany