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Before I got married, I used to live alone in a teeny, tiny apartment on the Upper East side, and my bathroom was literally inside of the kitchen. Needless to say, my crockpot was my best friend. I’d set it up on my drop-leaf table (in the living room!) before leaving for work, and chili was one one of my weekly go to recipes. Today I’m excited to share with you guys a more grown-up version of one of my favorite bachelorette meals… no crockpot required!

Ingredients

  • 1 poblano chile
  • 1 tomato
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 cup white beans
  • 1/2 cup canned corn corn
  • 2 corn tortillas
  • 12 ounces ground chicken
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 1.5 cups chicken stock
  • ½ cup milk
  • ¼ cup shredded Cheddar cheese

[click to continue…]

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A video posted by Kendra (@closetconfections) on


lenovo-day2 Around this time last year, I said goodbye to my job at a small technology firm and embarked on a new journey as an entrepreneur. Over the past year, I’ve built a business around coaching business owners on how to use social media and technology tools to promote their products and services online.

Being an entrepreneur is all about hustle, and any given day might have me presenting uptown on a college campus in the morning, hopping on the subway for a lunch meeting in midtown, and finally sliding into a cab to head downtown for an after hours networking event. As a former 9-to-5′er turned Social Media Maven, my days are usually spent on the go running my business, meeting with clients, and finding time to write blog content and connect with you guys in between.

So when the lovely folks at Lenovo asked me to demonstrate how a Yoga 3 Pro fits into my hectic lifestyle, I jumped at the chance. Here’s a sneak peek into my daily work routine…

lenovo-day1 Most mornings start with a breakfast networking event with other business owners where we share ideas, tactics and potential referrals with one another. Afterwards, I hop onto the subway to head to my office in Herald Square. My Yoga 3 Pro is sleek and lightweight, so it fits into most of my handbags quite nicely without any noticeable bulk.

lenovo-day10 After months of working from home, various coffee shops and crowded co-working spaces, I finally settled into a nice, cheery spot near the Empire State Building. I’m easily distracted, so I like to keep a tidy, somewhat spartan work space to help keep me focused. What’s not pictured is my desk drawer full of (mostly) healthy snacks and hot cocoa mix (my only vice).

When I’m in the office, I’m usually glued to my computer screen checking email, getting caught up with industry news, updating social profiles, following up with clients and professional contacts, and scheduling events.  Despite being so lightweight, the screen on my Lenovo Yoga 3 Pro is big and bright enough to handle all of my administrative tasks as well as various client projects, including graphic design for the web, social media posts and light video editing.

lenovo-day8 And yes, even though I am a self-professed tech-geek, I still rely on good old-fashioned sticky notes to write out my to-do lists…

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I also keep a steady rotation of business books to inspire and educate myself .

lenovo-day6 Afternoons are typically reserved for client meetings. If I’m meeting them at my office, I like to prep in the lounge area and greet them in a more relaxed and colorful environment rather than a stuffy conference room. The Lenovo Yoga 3 Pro’s tablet mode is perfect for laid-back web-browsing and fits nicely in my hands.

lenovo-day4 Also, not gonna lie… sometimes my clients run a little late, so I steal those moments to unwind and catch up on my own blog and social media updates!

lenovo-day3 Once my office duties are wrapped up, I drop my mobile business command station (aka laptop) back into my bag before heading to after-hours business functions and eventually home for the rest of the evening. One of the toughest issues with working for yourself is separating business life from home life. And I’ll admit that I don’t always do a very good job at it, but I’m getting better. After I finally pry myself away from email and unplug from social, I use my Yoga 3 Pro to relax and watch old reruns before going to bed.

And there you have it, folks! I had so much fun sharing a behind-the-scenes look into my office space with you guys. Running my own business  has been one of the most fun, scary, fulfilling and overwhelming professional challenges that I’ve ever taken on. Thanks so much to the team at Lenovo and Clever Girls for giving me the tools to help me rise to the task. And thank you for reading!

Lenovo has also offered to do a special giveaway for you guys. One lucky reader will receive their very own Yoga 3 Pro! Just login to Rafflecopter below to enter. The contest closes Friday, April 24th @ 12am EST, and a randomly selected winner will be announced the following week.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

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lilly-pulitzer-for-target-1 lilly-pulitzer-for-target-3lillylandlilly-pulitzer-for-target-2  lilly-pulitzer-for-target-4 The somewhat infamous Lilly Pulitzer x Target collection officially drops this weekend, but I was able to snag a couple of goodies during a pre-launch event in Bryant Park. The entire park was turned into a Lilly Resort, complete with colorfully printed hammocks, Essie manicures, and a live juice bar. Several of the artists who created the signature Lilly prints for this collections could also be spotted painting colorful masterpieces on the lawn. And lastly, there were a number of shoppers who came dressed to the nines in full Lilly regalia for the occasion!

After waiting in line for a cool 2o minutes, I was whisked inside where I skipped past the home goods and accessories and made a beeline for the racks of dresses. Since doors opened at 8am, and I was just stopping by on my lunch break, pickings were a little slimmer than I’d hoped. There was a little bit of everything (which I inspected closely for review), but not very many sizes left. In terms of what I’d spend my money on and what should be skipped, here’s my take:

SNAG

  • Cotton Shift Dresses. Here’s where you’ll get the best bang for your buck. The one I’m wearing is fully-lined and has decent-quality construction and finishings. Compared to other Lilly dresses that I’ve owned over the years, this one definitely stands up with just a few minor quality differences you’d only notice upon close inspection. All-in-all, I was impressed. The cotton is substantial, and they even attempted to match up the print along the side seams. I’m planning to get one or two more of these in other prints.
  • Swimsuits and Beach Towels. You’ll look super cute on the beach with your matching set… ‘nuf said!
  • Home Goods. If you’re into colorful, printed home goods, then you will be in heaven. Elevate your backyard BBQ or host a fancy brunch for your girlfriends with adorably printed plates and cups, plus a pineapple-shaped serving dish. Your spread is sure to be Instagram-worthy! If you have the space for them, the lawn chairs are also pretty Pinterest-worthy if I do say so myself.
  • Colorful Printed Scarves. I’m partial to the ones with the little pompoms on the ends, but all of the prints were cheery and vibrant. They’re also a great way to punch up an outfit, and I love the idea of wearing one in the same print as my dress.

SKIP

  • Long Sleeve Tunic Dresses. I had high hopes for those because I thought they’d be light and floaty. Unfortunately, the material turned out to be tragically thin and see-through and just had an overall cheap feel. Don’t be seduced by the cute prints… unless you only plan on wearing as a bathing suit coverup.
  • Shoes. I’ll admit that I’m a bit of a shoe snob, but honestly, I think you can save your money and find much better shoes (in real leather) outside of Target. The only exception might be those pineapple flip-flops. I can understand if you find them too stinkin’ cute to pass up… but I’d urge you to be strong and just say NO! Same goes for those espadrilles with the gold-toes. Trust me, they’ll just fall apart on you and leave you in tears.
  • Canvas Totes. I saw a lot of women snagging these at the event, and I was almost tempted. Don’t get me wrong, the prints are adorable. But at the end of the day, the quality in the handles and straps just weren’t there for me. They were all made from a metallic faux-leather material that I could just envision cracking and fraying in no time. The straw bags seemed a little more passable, especially the ones with the contrasting bows on the handle.

Are you guys excited for the Lilly Pulitzer x Target collection? Planning to stay up until midnight on Saturday? What goodies are you hoping to snag?

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{Forever 21 Jacket, J. Crew Dress & Ankle Boots (extra 30% off with code THEBEST), Chloe Handbag, Thrifted Miu Miu Belt, Dolce & Gabbana Sunglasses, Vita Fede Bracelet}

I’m just gonna come right out, and say it…

Life. Is. Good.

I just got back from the most wonderful vacation in Hawaii, and not even the jetlag nor 18-hour plane delay followed by a complete flight cancellation (United SUCKS, by the way) can put a damper on my spirits! The weather has finally warmed up, I signed up a new client at my day job that’s going to be TONS of fun to work with, aaaannnnd…

I’m wearing head-to-toe blush pink in today’s outfit!

Any day I can wear all pink is a good day in my book, and the rest is just icing on the cake!

What puts you in a good mood lately?

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{Down East Bathing Suit via Modcloth, Forever 21 Kimono and Aviator Sunglasses}

Things have been quiet on the blog lately as I’ve been off gallivanting in Hawaii for the past week or so. I know, I know… my life is so hard! But seriously, it’s been awesome to get away for some rest, relaxation, and much needed sunshine. My husband and I are also celebrating our 10-year anniversary (I CANNOT believe it’s been that long!). Stay tuned for more pics from my trip and a full vacation recap coming your way soon.

In the mean time, can we talk about my new bathing suit and how it makes me look like I actually have a waistline?! Trust me, I don’t… especially after a long hard winter full of lots of hot chocolate and macaroni and cheese. Optical illusions aside, I’m completely in love with it. It’s been years since I’ve worn a one-piece, and now I might be a convert. I also picked up a couple of these cute little kimonos from Forever 21 to wear as coverups, and I can’t wait to pick out a few more for summer. Below are a few of my favorites:

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