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Showing posts from August, 2017

Tin Whiskers Schottky Pumpkin Ale - it's here!

I'm a voracious consumer of good beer - and I absolutely count my lucky stars that I live in Minnesota where we have a never-ending influx of craft brewers and seasonal ales. I'm also the type to get an EARLY start on autumn. Like...August early.

So naturally, when I discovered that my favorite bar in St. Paul (Fitzgerald's) had Tin Whisker's Schottky Pumpkin Ale on tap already, I was ecstatic and had to try it!




This ale is, in my opinion, the holy grail of pumpkin ales. And believe me, I've tried a lot of them in the past few years. I've even brewed my own pumpkin cider wine in the past - that's how over-the-moon I am about this flavor in brewing.

Most pumpkin ales and porters tend to be cloyingly sweet and leave behind an artificial aftertaste not unlike what you might find in Starbuck's Pumpkin Spice Latte (not a fan of that one, believe it or not!) - but Tin Whiskers manages to perfectly bottle the elusive flavor of true pumpkin pie.

The pumpkin fla…

Autumn Bucket List

Autumn is that time of year when I come to life again. After the sweltering hell that is summer finally passes and the first crisp mornings make themselves felt, every cell in my body sings once more....


@veronacollection
2017 Autumn Bucket List


Make Pumpkin Pie



Drink Apple Cider

Enjoy Hot Chocolate Outside

Curl Up Under a Blanket with a Book


Wear Cozy Fall Socks

Watch Halloween Movies

Take a Stroll Through a Park

Make Soup

Burn Fall Scented Candles

Have a Picnic

Take Fall Photos

Visit Oktoberfest

Decorate w/ Autumn Colors

Drink Pumpkin Ale/Fall Beer

MN State Fair 2017 Highlights

Things We Did or Tried at the State Fair This Year:


LiftBridge Mini Donut BeerBigwoods Brewery Chocolate Chip Cookie BeerCajun Seasoned Alligator w/ Hush PuppiesArabian Nights Fun HouseFrench Meadow Peach Filled Scone and CoffeeGhost Pirates Kiddie RideBig Ferris Wheel RideQuebec Style Poutine (it wasn't really....they used chicken gravy)Ye Olde Mill Ride - it's 102 years old now!Smoked Pork Chop on a StickGeorge Clinton the Parliament Funkadelics (free show)







The State Fair is not my favorite activity of the year in Minnesota, so it's kind of an institution and they always have new things to try and eat - I almost always get the smoked pork chop on a stick because it's SO GOOD and you need the protein when you're doing that much walking. The scone and organic coffee was new, but it was the perfect pick-me-up for the mid-afternoon. I could have been more impressed with the State Fair beer selection - especially since some of the flavors were brewed for the fair only.

Case Study: Coffee vs Green Tea

Coffee and Green Tea both have caffeine, although in differing amounts, both contain antioxidants, and have great health benefits. But which one is healthier? And better question: Which one is better for me to start my day?



On a typical day, I usually consume at least two cups of coffee in the morning and at least one cup of green tea at some point during the day. I adore them both, for very different reasons. Coffee is like a warm hug, it's nostalgic and reminds me of my grandmother, and it's such a part of my daily ritual that I might experience anxiety if I had to go without. Green tea is relaxing and makes me feel 10X healthier after a single cup, and I love the subtle energy boost it comes with. It's the perfect afternoon pick-me-up.

So here was my challenge:

Week One - Drink Only Coffee in the Morning. No tea.

Week Two - Drink Only Green Tea in the Morning. No coffee.

I wanted to see the effect it had on my alertness and overall health. So for one week, I cut out green…

5 Mistakes I'm Glad I Made

If there is one thing that's completely, unavoidably human about life it's the act of making mistakes. We've all made at least one or two catastrophically bad choices in life, although maybe catastrophic might be too strong of a word here....



So without further ado, here are Five Mistakes I'm Glad I Made:


1.) Never Learning How to Drive.

Maybe, I should rephrase that. I learned how to drive, I just didn't like it. In fact, I was so petrified of it that I would routinely have projectile-vomit panic attacks when I was forced behind the wheel of a vehicle. Luckily for me, this only happened a handful of times in my early twenties.

Since then I have not driven any motor vehicle on any designated roadway. And while I sometimes lament the freedom of being able to just go -- I love that I've learned how to navigate various different types of public transit so seamlessly. And truth be told, not having a car to look after and pay insurance on saves a whole heck of a lot …

40 Beauty Questions Tag

Honestly, I love doing tag posts because they're easy, fun, and let my readers get to know a little bit more about me, in a really basic and almost list-like fashion. Today's tag is all about beauty, so I'm going to answer these 40 questions to the best of my ability.
SKINCARE -How many times do you wash your face daily? Actually wash it? Oh, once. At night. In the morning I use a micellar water to freshen up for the day before moisturizing.
-What skin type do you have? (dry,oily,combo) Definitely combination.
-What is your current facial wash? Clean&Clear Night Relaxing - it's got sea minerals and stuff.
-Do you exfoliate? Yes, about once or twice a week as needed.
-What brand do you use? e.l.f. has this lovely exfoliator that I currently enjoy. 
-What moisturizer do you use? I use e.l.f. Daily Hydrating Moisturizer on my cheeks and 10.0.6. Seriously Shine Free on my T-zone.
-Do you have freckles? Nope.
-Do you use eye cream? Yes, a caffeinated serum in the morning and a hydr…

ASMR for Sleep and Anxiety

The Lovely Fairy Char
According to Wikipedia, "Autonomous sensory meridian response (ASMR) is a colloquial term used for an experience characterized by a static-like or tingling sensation on the skin that typically begins on the scalp and moves down the back of the neck and upper spine. It has been compared with auditory-tactile synesthesia."

Within the last few years, ASMR videos have exploded (quietly) across Youtube, with ASMRtists giving us relaxing "tingles" using 3D mics, soft voices, ambient noises, and makeup brushes. ASMR is such a great alternative or supplemental treatment for anxiety and sleeplessness, and I can attest - I'm not even sure I can count how many lovely makeup roleplay videos I've dozed off to after a particularly stressful day.

There's something to be said for hearing a person speaking softly and enunciating their words just so, something soothing in the soft scratch of a pencil against paper, the sounds nails tapping of plasti…

“And suddenly you know: It's time to start something new and trust the magic of beginnings.” ― Meister Eckhart

In a few scant hours, the moon is going to waltz across the sky and obscure the brilliance of the sun. From here in Central Minnesota, I won't be able to see a complete eclipse, but the partial view is still going to be pretty spectacular. (By the time you read this, it might already be past!)

This Monday feels like a day of new beginnings and a shift in not only consciousness, but lifestyle. This was my first morning in our new apartment, my first day on the new bus route(s), and the changes are visceral. I began my week-long challenge of only drinking green tea instead of coffee. I have a new kitchen to play around in, and finally bake stuff and make healthier foods.

Last night I went to the Obon Festival at Como Park Zoo and Conservatory, and even amid the heat, humidity, and swarms of festival-goers I still felt reflective - as though some chapter of my life was quietly closing to make way for something new and different. At an event that honors one's past and ancestors, …

OOTD: Stars and Stripes

Certainly not the stars and stripes you were thinking of, hmmm? *wink wink*
I'm really looking forward to fall weather and thusly, fall fashion. This year I'm really excited about taking more casual and interesting pieces and mixing them into my work wardrobe. Today's experiment was a combination of my love for all things astrology and witchy AND my adherence to corporate silhouettes.


Necklace ~ Target Astrology Sweatshirt ~ H&M Striped Wrap Skirt ~ LOFT Shoes ~ MIA Bag (not pictured) ~ Steve Madden