Friday Favorites

October 28, 2016

This week, my big girl was awarded Student of the Month and her teacher had so many wonderful things to say about her at the assembly. One thing that stood out was this: "I love seeing that smile every morning. Her kindness helps create a positive atmosphere in our classroom." Talk about a proud mommy! Both my husband and I were overcome with emotion as our baby's teacher talked about how responsible and focused, and above all, kind our little girl is.  She turns seven tomorrow--lucky number seven--and all I want is for it to be a beautiful, magical, and memorable birthday for her. Because she makes every day beautiful and magical and memorable. Have a wonderful weekend, and God bless!

Geode lips--possibly the coolest beauty look I've ever seen.

The always inspiring Jenna Lyons

This amazing outdoor kitchen

A reminder of just how sweet a neckerchief looks. 

This super pretty cake.

Wordsmith Wednesday: Rapt

October 26, 2016

Here's where I share my favorite words with you. Because savvy girls have impressive vocabularies.

Friday Favorites

October 21, 2016

We've had a crazy week, and I can't remember the last time I felt this grateful for the weekend. Besides having to take my toddler to urgent care on Monday for an infected bug bite (her tiny little hand was so swollen and red, it broke my heart), we had the usual errands and dance classes and I've only got a week left before my big girl's Barbie Glam birthday party next weekend (coffee is good; coffee helped). This weekend I'll be finishing up details for the party, but I'm sure I'll find some time to relax too. Have an awesome weekend, and God bless!

This zebra cake

Sophia Loren in the most glamorous and dramatic winter look ever.

A carved pineapple. A pine-o-lantern?

Pumpkin spice muffins that look like little mini donuts. 

Nightstand Goals

October 19, 2016

We've always had night stands, but we've never actually had styled night stands; our bedside tables have typically been a place to stash anything from books we're reading at the moment to mail that needs reading, and now that we have young children, the odd toy or childish knick knack. We recently got new nightstands and I'm determined to transform them into the stylish, sleek bedside tables I see in design magazines. These nightstands serve up some serious inspiration. 

Love the gold, obvi. This is equal parts feminine and masculine, which is ideal for us. 

Simple, but so pretty.

We actually have these lamps (the shade is different though). 

Adding a chair instantly turns a bedside table into a vanity--pure genius!

I love the idea of fresh flowers by my bed at all times. 

A mix of shabby and glam that totally works.

This is, of course, too feminine for my husband, but I love the styling.

images via 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7

Wordsmith Wednesday: Epoch

October 19, 2016

Here's where I share my favorite words with you. Because savvy girls have impressive vocabularies.

Friday Favorites

October 14, 2016

It's actually starting to feel a bit like fall here in SoCal, and while my scarves and jackets are still hanging in my closet, I did have to pull on a cardigan every day this week. Plus, in the evenings, we've been able to open up the windows and snuggle up under blankets. I wish it could stay like this forever, but I've checked, and the temps are going to reach in the 90s again next week. In the meantime, it's officially the two-week countdown to my firstborn's seventh birthday and I'm starting to feel nostalgic, thinking back to the day she was born and reminiscing about her baby years. It's so hard to believe that I've got an actual school aged kid, in large part because I often can't believe I'm a grownup myself, but also because the time has gone by so quickly. We're planning a big party for her, complete with mini makeovers (age appropriate, of course), a fashion show, and a Shirley Temple toast--because lucky number seven! 

Have yourself a fabulous weekend, and God bless!

The cutest pineapple door knocker.

Pumpkin angel food cake French toast. I mean...

This gorgeous closet

Velvet dresses that look so luxe and glamorous.

Ocean sparkles

7 Totally Cute Doormats to Greet Your Guests

October 12, 2016

I've put off buying a doormat for our home since we moved in, and I'm a little embarrassed to admit that we've just been using the previous owners', which they left behind. The thing is, I want something that welcomes people to our home in a way that is entirely reflective of our family. It has to be fun, and maybe a little cheeky, and definitely cannot simply say welcome.  It's been awhile since I've had a project, so I'm kind of itching to do a DIY--these doormats are insanely cute and offer tons of inspiration.

Le Crib. Très chic.

Looove this one, but I'd probably get some very concerned looks from the parents of my daughter's friends when they come over. 

"What's up buttercup?" is actually something I say to my girls, so this one might be perfect. 

Ooh la la--mais oui!

This color combo is so fun and cheery, and the cacti and palm leaves definitely have a Palm Springs feel. 

A simple greeting.

I love that this one says hello and goodbye to guests. 

Wordsmith Wednesday: Indecorous

October 12, 2016

Here's where I share my favorite words with you. Because savvy girls have impressive vocabularies.


October 10, 2016

image by Angelica Golden

Friday Favorites

October 7, 2016

We had the tiniest bit of a cool down this week (sadly, it didn't last because temperatures are expected to reach the low 90s today), and we actually had to wear sweaters in the morning. It's not exactly the fall I've been looking forward to--cozied up on the sofa in scarves and socks with mugs of hot chocolate--but I'll take what I can get. It's going to stay warm over the weekend, so I'm considering pulling out the ice cream maker to whip up some treats for my daughters and niece. Have yourself an amazing weekend, and please don't forget to pray for the states that are expected to be hit by Hurricane Matthew, as well as the nations (Haiti, Bahamas, and Cuba) that have already been devastated by the storm. God bless!

Zoe Saldana as Prince for The Edit magazine.

German chocolate bomb.

A sweet welcome mat for the front door.

Pretty pumpkins.

This swoon-worthy mid-century modern living room

Nutella Swirled Pumpkin Bread

October 6, 2016

Even though I didn't grow up eating any pumpkin goodies like a lot of my friends (my mom doesn't care for it, so she never fed it to us), I am a huge fan of pretty much anything pumpkin, and a good pumpkin loaf, fresh from the oven and full of warm spices is definitely a favorite. This recipe, which I found on Pinterest and tweaked a little, takes the pumpkin bread I love to the next level with a thick swirl of chocolatey Nutella. It's the perfect breakfast or snack for those brisk autumn days, especially with a steamy cup of coffee. And since I can find any excuse to buy a jar of Nutella, I'm sure I'll be making this new favorite again and again this season.

Nutella Swirled Pumpkin Bread

1½ cups all-purpose flour
¾ cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
½ teaspoon cloves
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 eggs
1 cup pumpkin puree
⅓ cup milk
½ cup vegetable oil
¾ cups Nutella

Preheat oven to 350°F and grease a 9x5 inch loaf pan.

Mix all the dry ingredients together in a large bowl, then make a well in the center. Pour in eggs, oil, milk, vanilla, and pumpkin puree, then gently whisk together the wet ingredients for about 30 seconds before folding them into the dry ingredients. Whisk until just combined. Pour half the batter into the pan. 

Heat the Nutella in the microwave for 15 seconds, drizzle half over the batter in the pan, then swirl the Nutella into the batter with a knife. Repeat with the remaining pumpkin batter and warm Nutella. Bake for 1 hour, or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.

NOTE: Don't be disappointed if you find it hard to swirl the Nutella; it's pretty thick stuff, so most of it will remain on top. And it will still taste amazing!

Wordsmith Wednesday: Macabre

October 5, 2016

Here's where I share my favorite words with you. Because savvy girls have impressive vocabularies.

Get Gorgeous With Pumpkin

October 4, 2016

Pumpkin is plentiful this time of year, and it's popping up everywhere from your coffee cup (because PSL, baby!) to the huge bins in front of Trader Joe's. But besides baking muffins and pies, pumpkin can also be a fantastic natural beauty product. It's rich in vitamins A and C, plus betacarotene, potassium, zinc, and antioxidants--all this adds up to one exfoliating, hydrating, wrinkle reducing, glow inducing orange machine. Once you discover the beautifying benefits of this fruit, you'll want to slather it all over your body. 

1. For a simple yet effective mask that works wonders on your hair and body, combine ¼ cup pumpkin puree with 1 teaspoon each of olive oil and raw honey.

2. Whip up a DIY lip scrub for a soft, smooth pucker: mix ½ teaspoon fine sugar with ¼ teaspoon each of pumpkin puree and coconut oil.
3. Drink pumpkin juice for healthy skin and hair.
4. DIY a hair conditioner by blending 1 cup of pumpkin puree with ½ cup of plain yogurt and 1 tablespoon of honey. Pack it onto your hair, paying close attention to your ends, and leave on for 30 minutes before rinsing.
5. Add a few drops of pumpkin seed oil to your bath for soft, supple skin.
6. Snack on pumpkin seeds--they're a skin superfood that contain a ton of zinc, the mineral that promotes cell renewal and helps maintain collagen (in other words, you'll look years younger).
7. After spending the summer in sandals (which is surprisingly hard on feet and is the cause of dry, cracked heels), treat them to a foot rub with a pumpkin salt scrub. Make a paste with ½ cup pumpkin puree, 2 tablespoons of olive or coconut oil, and enough salt to make a paste.
8. Whip up a moisturizing hair mask that will help keep frizz at bay. Mix a cup of pumpkin puree with 2 tablespoons of raw honey and apply liberally to your tresses, cover with a shower cap and let it do its thing for 15 to 20 minutes. 
9. To make a pumpkin pie face mask, mix together 2 teaspoons of pumpkin puree and ½ teaspoon each of raw honey, milk, and cinnamon. It'll smell just like the real thing and leave your skin looking and feeling all kinds of yummy.
10. Here's a recipe for a mani/pedi treatment that could rival any nail salon: combine ½ cup pumpkin puree with one whole egg and a teaspoon each of honey and almond or olive oil; slather on feet and hands; stick your hands and feet into plastic grocery bags and relax for 20 minutes; rinse.

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