Growing up in Arizona has left me with a DEEP appreciation for ALL the seasons, but there is definitely something about Spring that holds a special place in my heart. When things come back to life after being dormant all winter, it’s hard to get into the spirit of renewal. And I’m not mad about taking a cue from Mother Nature herself. Spring makes me want to be in a continual state of color. I want to be surrounded by it when I look out the window, when I get dressed each day, and when I am cooking in the kitchen. So, let’s talk about Color Bombing your LIFE!!!
Color does a lot of things for me and there is actually a ton of science behind how different colors affect us. In studies, colors have been shown to change alpha brain waves. When color is transmitted from the eye to the brain, the brain releases a hormone affecting the emotions, mind clarity and energy levels. How cool is that?! Now wonder I am, and I am sure I am not alone in this, drawn to the vibrant colors in this season. They are literally sending signals to our body that light us up from within. BRING IT ON! Let’s take this knowledge and put it to use shall we?
Add some pops of color, but keep it classy
There are some basic rules of thumb when it comes to using color in your outfits. You don’t want to look like a mis-mash of color all over the place, but you can certainly mix and match more than one bright color. I would consider myself to be relatively conservative when it comes to color. Meaning I pick “a” focal point for my outfit and build from there. My hot pink blazer is a perfect example of this. It makes a statement all by itself, so I pair it with neutrals and sometimes a colorful sneaker. Now, that doesn’t mean you couldn’t push the envelope and wear a fun print underneath with complementary or analogous colors. Not sure what the heck I just said? Oddly enough I heard that term in an Art class I was observing recently and now it’s popping up in my life outside of school! Most of us understand the benefits of complementary colors. As the name suggests these are colors that, well, compliment each other. These are hues that sit converse from each other on the color wheel. It’s known that opposites attract, and the same can be said for these colors. Analogous colors are shades that sit next to each other on the color wheel. They’re friends - besties even! They work seamlessly together to ensure your outfit hues align perfectly. Now, if you are feeling bold this season, the rule of 3 is going to be your guardrail. More than three can leave you looking less intentional than pulled together and chic!
Here are some fun examples of mixing colors! These outfits aren’t super functional in my life, but I love seeing pictures like this to give me inspiration in this season! I could easily see myself doing a green top under my pink blazer and wearing a bright green with dark denim for that combo! Which color combo would you try?
Taking those colors beyond your closet
For me, I also think of Spring as the opportune time to start getting fresh in the kitchen again. Often during winter, I think it can be easy to tend towards canned vegetables for soups, heavier dishes for more warmth, and even pre-made meals for ease on shorter, darker days. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE soup season, but winter being over is a time that makes me want to bring more life back into my menus. I am sharing two of my favorite recipes this week that will bring all the color and vibrancy you need to be light up those tastebuds and won’t have you feeling like you are stuck in the kitchen all day!
Creamy Avocado Corn Salad
6 strips nitrate-free bacon
4 green onions, thinly sliced
2 jalapenos, seeded and diced
2 large avocados, diced
a large handful of fresh cilantro, chopped
3 cups corn fresh or frozen, thawed
1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
zest and juice of 1 large lime
1/2 tsp red chili flakes (optional)
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees f. and line a large baking tray with parchment paper. Lay your bacon slices onto the prepared baking tray, with space in between. Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until crispy. Allow bacon to cool then chop it and transfer to a paper towel-lined plate. Set aside until ready to use.
While the bacon is cooking, prepare the remaining ingredients. In a large serving bowl, add corn, avocado, green onions, jalapeño, cooked bacon, cilantro, yogurt, lime zest and juice. Sprinkle with salt & pepper to your taste.
Stir gently, and thoroughly to combine.
Melty California Grilled Avocado Chicken
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, about 6 oz. each
1 Tbsp avocado oil, or extra-virgin olive oil
1 tsp dry Italian seasonings
1 fresh garlic clove, minced
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 slices high quality mozzarella cheese
4 large slices ripe avocado
4 large slices fresh tomato
4 large fresh basil leaves
2 Tbsps high quality balsamic vinegar
2 Tbsps raw honey
In a large glass bowl add chicken, oil, garlic, Italian seasonings, sea salt and pepper. Toss well to get chicken coated.
Heat a grill pan or an outside grill to medium-high.
Grill chicken for about 4-5 minutes per side (about 10 minutes total) , or until cooked through and no longer pink in the center.
Top chicken with mozzarella, avocado, and tomato slices, and cook for an additional 2 minutes, just until cheese is melted.
In a small glass bowl whisk balsamic vinegar, honey, and a pinch of salt.
Drizzle this balsamic mixture over the chicken and garnish with your fresh basil leaves.
Hope you have some fun with color in this season! Enjoy :)