Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Easy Last Minute DIY Christmas Gifts

If you're anything like me, you're pretty good at appearing like you've got your life and holiday shopping completely in order.

But in truth, it's Wednesday and Christmas Eve is tomorrow and you may have several people that you still haven't checked off your list.

I wanted to remind you all of a few simple DIY gifts that can be whipped up rather easily and make a huge impact on your gift recipient. In my opinion, homemade gifts can be just as thoughtful if not more so than those found in stores.

My go-to DIY for the ladies in my life:

Honey Lavender Body Scrub

All ingredients can be found in a supermarket/health food store. Fairway has all ingredients and I'm fairly confident that Whole Foods has you covered as well!

My go-to cookies:

Cool Whip Cookies

These cookies are unbelievably easy and can be customized for Christmas with red and green sprinkles or with Red Velvet cake mix instead of standard chocolate/vanilla.

My go-to Snack Gift:


Rosemary or Toasted Coconut Popcorn

Another fun and easy recipe:

Sprinkles Bakes' 3 ingredient Peanut Butter Fudge


My go-to Subscription Services:



Petit Vour

Blue Bottle Coffee

Saturday, December 19, 2015

The Pants You NEED for Christmas Morning

Happy Saturday!

Jon and I will be hosting Christmas morning breakfast at my mom's house for my troop of siblings. I'll unfortunately have to leave my house, which means I should put on clothing, but they'll all be in pjs when we arrive.

My solution?

These sequin sweatpants topped with a cozy and luxurious sweater.

I got them for $20 a few weeks ago, but they're on sale now for $13. Honestly, you need them! They'll also be perfect for changing into on NYE when you're sick of your too tight, too short cocktail dress!


Thursday, December 17, 2015

On Repeat

  1. I can't stop listening to this song. I'm a woman obsessed. 
  2. Sadly, my worst fears were confirmed by my best friend-I'll never be as cool as Lorde (who is 7 years my junior). 

Monday, December 14, 2015

Use What You've Got: Cocktail Accessory Turned Beauty Savior

Last week, I had a particularly hideous blemish looming on my cheek. Despite my best efforts to keep my hands to myself, I made a bit of a mess out of my skin. I had been keeping spoons in the fridge at work to mitigate afternoon swelling, but I was less diligent at home. While chatting with my husband in the kitchen, I had an epiphany!

I walked over to the freezer and grabbed one of the whiskey stones that lives there in perpetuity. My husband was as equally horrified as I was delighted by my bright idea. The premise of a whiskey stone is that it does not melt and water down your whiskey though your drink stays at a perfectly cool temperature. I quickly learned that a single whiskey stone is also the perfect size and temperature for soothing your skin and will not melt on your face. Obviously, you have to be sure to wash them thoroughly after using them on your blemishes and/or under eye puffiness, though I'm fairly certain that whiskey's high alcohol content will kill any face germs that may linger.

Might I also suggest a second set of stones solely for skincare purposes if your whiskey drinking partner is a bit chilly about sharing?

Friday, December 11, 2015


I've been reading Into the Gloss for quite a while and have been excited to see the launch of their skin care products. I've always been intrigued but never took the jump. I kept seeing the items crop up on every feed that I have, and I've admired Emily Weiss's skin for what feels like forever.

Black Friday presented me with 25% off their entire site, so I took the plunge and ordered the Mask Duo Set (regularly $48) and the Balm Dotcom (regularly $12).

I try to always stay 100% truthful here, so I hope you can believe me when I say that I truly love both of the products (really all 3 considering the mask set features 2 different options).

The Balm Dotcom feels like Neosporin in consistency and also comes in a tin tube. Recently I have been applying it to my dry, chapped lips, but I also used it to soothe a cut on my brow bone. If you only purchase one item from Glossier, this is the one to nab-even better is if you can grab the coconut balm which has been sold out for what seems like forever.

The Mask Duo Set just makes me smile. The product, the packaging, the feeling of my face after-all have exceeded my expectations and I could not recommend the set highly enough. The Mega Greens Galaxy Pack is recommended for when you're feeling "dirty". With the consistency a mixture of a scrub and a mud mask, it leaves your skin feeling refreshed and clean (without feeling dry or sensitive) after an exciting 20 minute tingle. The Moisturizing Moon Mask is recommended for when you're feeling "dry". The Moon Mask goes on in a very silky, creamy consistency. Though it feels like you're simply moisturizing at first, it does bring a more subtle tingle as it works into the skin. I'll admit that the Moon Mask gets a bit tacky and requires more work to wash it off, but the after effect is well worth the added effort.

I've been a longtime fan of Tata Harper's Resurfacing Mask, but this duo set has me seriously considering a change up. I can absolutely see myself purchasing one or both masks once my set is used up. I'm officially a Glossier lover!

On a final note, I'll let you know that I was initially drawn to this set due to the very detailed approach to its packaging. The Mask Duo Set was modeled on a Russell Stover box of chocolates. If that doesn't make you want to grab a set, I don't know what will.

Check out the below video for a behind the scenes (#bts) video of the sets packaging concept.

PS. Check out MyDomaine's interview with Glossier founder, Emily Weiss here!

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

[Semi] Homemade Hot Chocolate with Vanilla Agave Whipped Cream

Mug (Anthropologie) | Gingerbread House Mug Toppers (Anthropologie)

Last week, I was feeling antsy, cold, and bored (the worst combination ever). I thought about going out to find a delicious, indulgent hot chocolate but I didn't want to layer up or put the pugs in their cages (they are crate trained for when we are not home). Jon offered to locate and deliver hot chocolate for me, but I didn't care enough to make him leave the house just for hot chocolate.

A couple hours passed by and my desire for hot chocolate grew and then I realized that I had all the ingredients at home to whip up my own delicious (semi-homemade) hot chocolate, complete with whipped cream!

I will admit right now that I used hot chocolate mix, I'm a HUGE fan of semi homemade treats! I used Godiva powdered hot chocolate mix and I would recommend it any day of the week. It's delicious and the flavor is very build-able depending on how rich you like your drink, not to mention the fact that it allows you to whip up a delicious beverage whenever you want. whenever. you. want.

I like to use a 50/50 mixture of steamed 2% milk (I used my Nespresso Aeroccino for this) and hot water for my drink, but you do you, boo!  After starting my kettle and prepping my whipped cream ingredients, I ran a Ciocattino (chocolate) pod through my machine to make an espresso.

Then I add the desired amount of the aforementioned miracle powder and heat until it's nice and hot, though not boiling (a simmer is the sweet spot).

While heating my liquids, I pour heavy whipping cream into a measuring glass and add a dash of vanilla and light agave. Since we only have turbinado sugar in our house, I had to find another way to sweeten my whipped cream and agave fit the bill really nicely. I personally find agave to be much sweeter than honey and it's definitely lighter/smoother in consistency so it blended into the cream beautifully, however honey will work just as well if you prefer it to agave.

A word of advice regarding adding vanilla, go lighter and add more if you want later on! For me, I want to smell the vanilla in the whipped cream rather than taste it, so a dash does the trick for me.

Once everything has been heated, I add my hot chocolate powder, steamed milk, hot water, and an epsresso into my mug. While the flavors meld together, I whip my cream and add a large dollop to the top and sprinkle with cinnamon.

I'm always looking for ways to spice up my hot chocolate, if you have any suggestions, I'd love to hear them!

Recipe (Makes 1 serving, double if sharing with a partner):

Godiva Hot Chocolate Powder (about 2 TBSP per mug)
1/2 Cup milk (your choice of dairy/fat content)
1/2 Heavy Cream
1 Espresso
1 tsp Light Agave
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Ground Cinnamon or Nutmeg for garnish

  • Add 2 TBSP of hot chocolate powder to your mug
  • Fill mug halfway with hot water
  • Add remaining half of steamed/warmed milk
  • Add espresso (if desired)
  • Mix thoroughly
  • Whisk heavy cream with agave and vanilla extract until stiff peaks form
  • Top hot chocolate with whipped cream
  • Sprinkle ground cinnamon/nutmeg atop whipped cream
  • Enjoy!

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

My Closet by Numbers

I've read about capsule wardrobes several times and have considered planning my own, but I work in a boutique that offers the coolest pieces, so I would never be able to live with 3 shirts and 2 pairs of pants. That being said, I really love building capsules for trips and specific events.

I've seen capsule posts with anywhere from 37 to 12 pieces and that made me wonder how my closet actually adds up. I like to think I'm fairly normal in the amount of clothing that I own, accessories and jewelry is where you'll notice my vast collection of nonsense that not every woman owns. I would say that my shoe count is a bit lower than your average woman, I just completed a HUGE purge and have agreed not to replenish. My husband (who is reading this and is laughing about how much shit I actually own) would disagree on all accounts, but he's entitled to his own incorrect opinion.

The calculations below represent only my new purchases for the fall season (which I'll pair with existing pieces), I switch between Spring/Summer and Fall/Winter. Also, I store my basic leggings/tanks/tees in a dresser, so those aren't included either.

Tops/Blouses: 7
Jackets/Blazers: 4
Sweaters: 5
Bottoms: 4 (3 pairs of jeans/1 pair of black pants)
Dresses: 4 (3 shift dresses trimmed w leather/1 wrap dress)
Skirts: 2

GRAND TOTAL: 26 pieces

26 doesn't sound unreasonable to me, but I wouldn't know what "reasonable" is if I walked into it.