Federal Galley Pittsburgh

I had been waiting for the opening of Federal Galley on the NorthSide of Pittsburgh  for what seemed like forever!  It’s been open a few months and I’ve been able to check it out a couple times since it opened.  I thought those of you who are local to Pittsburgh and haven’t had the chance, might want to see what it’s all about!

Federal Galley is the second concept of this type in Pittsburgh.   The first is Smallman Galley located in Pittsburgh’s Strip District neighborhood.   Federal Galley is four restaurants in one location.  There are four very different cuisines available and a communal dining room and bar.

I absolutely love this idea!  It is perfect for groups of friends who all have different dietary needs or just can’t agree on where to go!  You can each order from your choice of restaurant and still sit together and enjoy each other’s company! One car, one trip, four choices!

You pick from one of the four, either El Lugar, Michigan & Trumbull, Supper or my fave, Provision Pgh.  Order and pay at the restaurant of your choice, go grab a cocktail at the bar (or order non-alcohol at the restaurants), pick a table with your companions and your food is brought to you!

All the restaurants have their own staff and kitchens.  There are chalkboard menus showing what’s featured at each above their registers.  All the staff has been super friendly during my visits and always willing to answer any questions I have about the food.

I’ve only been to Federal Galley during the work day, so I haven’t partaken of the bar yet, but those who have tell me it’s excellent.  Water is provided on each table, along with glasses and silverware can be found either at the restaurant window or at a nearby communal area with napkins and trash cans.

I’ve also only been here in the Winter, but can’t wait to visit once the outdoor patio area is open.  It looks amazing so far!  And even in the Winter, the large garage style windows let in tons of light which all of us native to Pittsburgh know is necessary!

There are a few small tables, but most are family style large tables with lots of seats so you can share your experience with others.  There is also a bar top along the ordering windows with stools.  You can see it a few photos above.

Now what’s really important, the food! I haven’t tried all four yet, but I can say so far, my very favorite has been Provision Pgh.  They have a lot of choices, but my obsession is their Provision Fries!  They are magical!  They actually told me their secret on Instagram.  Shhh! They are triple cooked!  Seriously, try them, no one I have turned on to them has been disappointed!!  Plus, the Provision Pgh staff is so accommodating to my super picky self!  They are so great about any tweaks I want to make to my order and so friendly!  I actually am going to try their Impossible Burger (vegan) next!

Even though Provision Pgh is my fave, I’ve never had a bad meal at any of the ones I’ve tried.  Friends brought along on my visits all ate at different places and all said the food was amazing.  Granted, I’ve only been here during the day, but we’ve never had a problem waiting in line or finding a place to sit.  You might need to share a table with other people, but you aren’t right on top of them (in my experience).

Now on to the second most important thing to Pittsburghers, where’s it at and where can I park?  It’s located in Nova Place, which used to be called Allegheny Center, it is in the plaza (outside courtyard) area between PNC’s end of Allegheny Center and the Children’s Museum.  On street parking recently opened up along West Commons (Allegheny Circle), so you can park on the street or park in the garage.

Federal Galley has various activities throughout the month and you can check out what’s planned on their website here along with directions. 

Valentine’s Day Pittsburgh Style

Valentine’s day is one of those holidays that always sneaks up on me.  You know it is coming, but you sort of forget about it and next thing you know it’s here.

I decided to start looking for some things to do to celebrate Valentine’s day earlier this year and came up with a couple really interesting choices for Pittsburgh locals.  These aren’t your usual dinner and a movie ideas!  Now to just talk my husband into one of these!!  Note that since Valentine’s Day is on a Wednesday this year, some of these are the weekend before and the weekend after the actual holiday.

Cupids and Canines

When:  Saturday February 17, 2018 from 6-11 pm

A Monte Carlo night to benefit Humane Animal Rescue and Bow Wow Buddies Foundation.  There’s a band, auctions, and a dog wedding.

More information here.


Wigle Whiskey’s Spicy Soiree

When: February 10 and 11, 2018 (check website for times)

Celebrate Wigle Whiskey’s release of this year’s Afterglow Roasted Ginger Whiskey.  Live music and tasty bites including ginger donuts!

More information here.


Animal Instincts Valentine’s Dinner at the Pittsburgh Zoo and Aquarium

When: February 16, 2018

This one is a bit out there, but for the right couple it would be perfect!  It’s different, that’s for sure!  It’s dinner, cocktails and an adults only presentation on exotic animal mating!  There’s also some small animal visits, let’s hope they aren’t mating!

More information here.


My Snarky Valentine at the Children’s Museum

When: February 8, 2018

An evening of food, drink and making.  There’s adult crafting, karaoke, and pierogies!  Can’t get more Pittsburgh than that, right? There will also be some adoptable animals from Humane Animal Rescue.

More information here.


Galentine’s Day Yoga

When: February 13, 2018

A sixty minute yoga sesh at the History Center followed by prosecco and warm chocolate chip cookies plus after hours access to the American Spirit exhibition.

More information here.


Valentine’s Day at Heinz Chapel

When: February 14, 2018

I went to Pitt and have never heard this legend before, but it’s on the internet so you know it must be true (ha!)  Legend has it that if you kiss on the steps of Heinz Chapel, one day you will be married there. The first fifty couples get a rose and if you stop by the Schenley Bridge and add a love lock and you have an Instagram perfect day!

More information here.


I’d love to hear what you are doing for Valentine’s Day in the comments below!




Must Have Monday

Hope you had a great Thanksgiving!  Mine was relaxing with a ton of Starbucks and Gilmore Girls marathoning and a dose of shopping.  I’ve never been a middle of the night Black Friday shopper.  Having worked retail in the past, I always feel bad for anyone who has to leave their family on Thanksgiving to go open a store, so I try not to shop until mid day on Friday.

Did you notice how many stores had their Black Friday sales start earlier in the week?  I swear every other email was another early Black Friday notice.  I was definitely on board for that!

I bought a few things online and I did venture out later on Friday and then again on Saturday for a few quick gifts.  I don’t even know why I bothered, I should have just shopped online for everything!  It wasn’t the crowds, it was more a woefully under staffed Macy’s that was annoying.

I did find a couple things I consider Must Have’s and am sharing today!

Voluspa Goji Tarroco Orange Candle

First up is this beautiful candle I found at a local gift shop (Gifted Hands for those of you that are local to Pittsburgh).  Though Voluspa can be found online at Nordstrom and a lot of other retailers.  I loved the red glass container (it looks slightly orange in the photo above but in person it is a really rich red) and can’t wait to use it once the candle is used up.   The note I notice the most from this one is the orange.  It has a great throw and you can definitely smell it throughout the house.  The red glass looks gorgeous at night when lit!


Alpaca Pajama Bottoms

One of the sales I hit up this weekend was the Lane Bryant 40% off everything sale.  I grabbed these Alpaca pajama pants.  I am definitely seeing Alpaca’s everywhere this Christmas!  These are super comfy and I am actually wearing them as I type this!


Halo Top Ice Cream

Every dieter’s fave, Halo Top Ice Cream!  It used to be sorta hard to find, but it is literally in every grocery store now.  I even found it in my small home town grocer.  My freezer currently has Cinnamon Roll and Peanut Butter Cup.  Available in a million flavors, it is perfect to hit that sweet craving when you are trying to cut calories.  The entire pint is less than 300 calories (varies depending on flavor) and is definitely the best low cal ice cream I’ve encountered.

What did you pick up during Black Friday weekend? Any must have’s? I’d love to hear about it in the comments!


Must Have Monday

I’ve been away from the blog for awhile now and have got a stockpile of things I’ve tried out and loved, so I thought I’d start off with a new series called Must Have Monday.   Let’s get started right away!

First off, the most delightful find of the season so far!  I’ve tried both the Dark Chocolaty Sea Salt and White Chocolatier Peppermint flavors and both are delicious.  There’s also a sugar cookie version, but I can’t speak personally for that one (though I am sure it is just as great).

For those of you that are local to Pittsburgh, I even like them even better than Pittsburgh Popcorn (shhhh!don’t tell!)  I really like Pittsburgh Popcorn and buy it all the time, but sometimes I find their chocolate mixes a bit overwhelming, meaning they clump together in giant clumps which are hard to eat.  This brand doesn’t do that giant clumping thing and I find it much easier to limit how much of it I eat.

They are a perfect answer to that sweet and salty craving.  Super easy to just throw in a cute bowl and on your holiday party table to make it look like you made an effort ! Go ahead and tell people you made them yourself off a Pinterest pin. 🙂

I found them locally at Giant Eagle in Pittsburgh, but they are also available online.  Get thee to the grocery store stat people!!

I picked up this set of 3 stud earrings a couple weeks ago at Nordstrom locally and have worn all of them ever since.  I wanted some studs that weren’t your typical and these definitely fit the bill.  I bought gold, but you can find them in a rose gold and silver (along with the gold) online.  They would make a really cute Christmas present and you could even split them up for gift giving!  Check them out here!

I’m loving all the “fancy” sweatshirts out right now and couldn’t wait to pick up a couple for the Fall/Winter. This isn’t the greatest photo of it, but this shirt from Lane Bryant is all kinds of adorbs!

It’s got bell sleeves and a black tie ribbon detail on the shoulders.  It’s not quite a sweatshirt, but heavier than a regular top.  Really cute with black skinny jeans!  I love how it’s both comfy and a little bit special at the same time.  It’s in heavy rotation for my weekend wear!  Check it out online here or in store.

I’d love to hear about your latest must have’s in the comments!



Pumpkin Spice Everything!


Sorry for my prolonged absence from the blog, but I’ve had a ridiculous amount of stuff going on in my life the past few months.  I hope to have some more time in the near future to blog, but most likely I won’t be back to regular blogging until November.  I appreciate each and everyone of you that has been checking in over the past couple months to see any updates!  I promise, more to come on what’s been going on in the future! (Some BIG things)

In the meantime, it’s pumpkin spice season and I can’t let it pass without blogging about it!  I broke out my Pumpkin Spice and Everything Nice tshirt last week while enjoying my fifth pumpkin spice Starbucks of the season and realized when someone asked me where I got it, that the company who made mine went out of business.  🙁

I decided to check out Etsy to see if anyone else sold a similar one and found an amazing amount of PS inspired stuff.  There are tons of tees, but I also found a lot of other stuff.  I thought I would put together a quick round up of my faves for everyone.

Basic AF Mug

How hilariously appropriate is this mug?  I absolutely need this one!  I might be basic, but I don’t care cause pumpkin spice is freaking delicious!!


Pumpkin Spice Socks
These socks crack me up!  I definitely need these for around the house.  Perfect thing to pair with a Starbucks gift card.

Pumpkin Spice Girl Tote

How cute is this tote for Fall?  Easy to tuck into a care package for your fave college student to use around campus.

Pumpkin Spice Tee

If you are like me and can’t say no to a PS, this is the shirt for you!


Pumpkin Spice Card

The perfect card to include with any gift this Fall!  And the shop (LilyandVal) is based in Pittsburgh, my hometown!  Even better!

Want to see the rest of my picks?  Check out my Pumpkin Spice Pinterest board here!

Thanks again for checking out the blog and I promise lots more to come soon!!





Best Christmas Nail Art

I love to go crazy with my nails for Christmas and thought you might want to see some nail art I’ve sported last and this year!  All nail art on my nails was done at Dallas Beauty Lounge in Pittsburgh, PA.  My very favorite place to get nail art!  I’ve never brought in an idea that they couldn’t create and make even better!


Christmas Nail Art

I went in to last my nail appointment all set to get these and ended up getting something different at the last minute.  These are still in the running for my final appointment before Christmas.  Originally found here.


Salty Blonde Blog


These snowflake nails are what I ended up with at my last appointment.  I love them!  Super subtle ode to the season that’s easy to wear everyday!  Nail art by Kalynn at Dallas Beauty Lounge in Pittsburgh, Pa.

Salty Blonde Blog

These whimsical ornament/snow globe nails were some of my faves from last year.  I came in with a couple of different ideas and Kate from Dallas Beauty Lounge combined them into these!

Salty Blonde Blog

These chalkboard nails were so adorable in person!  Kate from Dallas Beauty Lounge did a fantastic job in creating these for me!

I need your help in deciding what to get for my last appointment before Christmas!  The first idea is at the top of this post and here’s a couple more.  As usual, I pulled these ideas from Instagram.  Give me a follow here.  Let me know in the comments which you think I should get!

Salty Blonde Blog

These are a strong contender!  I love the Christmas tree on top of the car image in general, so to see it recreated on nails made me squee!  Nail art by Sierrasnails via Instagram.

Salty Blonde Blog

This gorgeous Christmas tree caught my eye on Instagram.  I love the impact of it on one nail versus having a bunch of images on various nails.  Would be lovely with hunter green nails too.  Nail art by Sierrasnails via Instagram.

Salty Blonde Blog

This Starbucks cup inspired art by Nailstorming is reminiscent of my own ornament nail art, but I like the simplicity of this being just red and white.  Nail art by Nailstorming via Instagram.

Salty Blonde Blog

I love these teeny tiny Christmas trees and I think paired with tiny candy canes would be really cute!  I am super into the teeny tiny designs, so this could be a winner.  Nail art by Minipolishh via Instagram.

Which one do you think I should pick?  Let me know in the comments !




Modern Mercantile

I’ve been driving by Modern Mercantile for over a year on my way to work and have always loved their window displays, but had never stopped in.  I finally had time last month to check out the store and wasn’t disappointed.

For those who don’t follow my route to work (HA!), it’s located on Main Street in Carnegie, PA, a suburb of Pittsburgh.

The first thing that caught my eye was a display of amazing bags made of repurposed tents.  They are so well made and would make fantastic gifts.  (I kind of want to lose my laptop bag to make an excuse to buy one)  Choices ranged from handbags, totes, smaller electronic bags, laptop bags and keychains.  The owner told me they will be restocking through the holidays.

Modern Mercantile

Modern Mercantile had jewelry, dog and cat toys and treats, and décor items spread throughout the space.  I especially loved the initial key chains made from recycled license plates and the collar attachable bow ties for dogs.  They also have their own private label laundry, bath soaps and candles.  All smelled amazing and are locally made!

Modern Mercantile


I saw so many things that would be perfect for gifts, I can’t wait to come back and shop some more! After petting shop dog Rufus, we went next door for some ice cream at the Flying Squirrel.

Have you been to Modern Mercantile? I’d love to hear your thoughts below!