Wednesday, December 25, 2019

Merry Christmas

Wishing everyone and their families a very Merry Christmas!  I just wanted to take a moment to wish you all a wonderful day and that I appreciate each and every one of you for taking time out of your day to visit my blog! 
“And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, ‘Fear not, for behold, I bring unto you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the City of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.’ And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God, and saying ‘Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward me”
~ Luke2:8-14

Monday, December 23, 2019

Christmas Eve Eve!

I know I have already said this, but 2019 went by so fast… I definitely have my fingers crossed that 2020 goes a little slower and is a little more enjoyable. 
I can hardly believe that it is Christmas eve eve! Can we rewind the Christmas season all the way back to December 1 – I’m not ready for the Christmas season to end – I feel like it just got here. For the most part Christmas shopping has been completed, the Christmas decorations are set, and a Christmas menu has been made. After all that work you definitely deserve a treat yourself moment. I know…I know… Christmas is about giving, appreciating what you have, and doing some for others, but every now and then you need to treat your self to a little something, something. Here are a few of my current favorites from Shopbop!

Wednesday, December 18, 2019

Hostess With The Mostess Gift Guide

Is it just me or did Christmas time just really sneak up on everyone this year? Despite the fact that I put up a tree and decorated a few weeks before Thanksgiving I feel like Christmas things just have not been up long enough yet, and I just cannot believe that Christmas is literally one week away! Seriously, where has the time gone?! 

2019 has undoubtably been a completely crazy and busy year – I feel like I just haven’t been able to get things I need to do completely organized and I haven’t done that great a job keeping up my blog this year or reading along with some other things. Last year around this time people were challenging 2019 to “bring it on” and 2019 definitely brought it on for sure. I for one, have my fingers crossed that 2020 is one of the calmest, happiest, easiest years ever filled with many blessings for everyone. 
Okay, now onto the gift guide… See, I told you all I haven’t been that great on staying on top of things… this is my first gift guide of the Christmas season {yikes!} but Holiday parties seem to run well past Christmas day and I choose items that can easily be found in any stores and can still be ordered online in time for this weekends festivities. After all, a lot of work goes into putting together a holiday party, and the hostess with the mostess that we all know and love definitely deserves a gift of appreciation for all their hard work and care they put into getting everyone together!

Here’s where to shop the above For Her Gift Guide! Click on the name of the item below to be directed to the website. 
2.             Snowy Lane Compote
3.             Williams Sonoma S’mores
5.             Nest Candle
7.              Down The Hatch Cocktail Napkins (Set of 4)
9.             Acrylic Backgammon Game Set
10.           Apron

Friday, December 13, 2019

Christmas In Winter Hill

One thing that I wish I had done more in 2019 is read more. There just always seemed to be something going on; 2019 was an extremely busy year. Luckily things seem to be slowing down just in time to be able to enjoy the holiday season, settle down, and read a few Christmas books. I mean what better way to get back in the habit of reading than with a few Christmas themed books.
Christmas in Winter Hill is the first book I have read of Melody Carlson’s and I completely loved it! I honestly could not put the book down – I read it in like a day. The story line was so sweet and the town sounds just as perfect as the cover looks. 

Krista Galloway, a single mother who grew up in foster homes, decides to move with her daughter, Emily, to Winter Hill, Washington. Ironically, upon arrival, Krista discovers she has moved them to a town who is famous for their Christmas celebration, one of her least favorite times of the year… Emily falls in love with the town upon arrival claiming that it feels like they are living in a storybook, if only it would snow. 

The town’s Christmas spirit is so infection that even Krista starts to get wrapped up in the excitement of the Christmas season. However, with every move there are a few big bumps along the way, and Krista’s job as city manager unfortunately puts her in the middle of some major bumps to the point where Krista and Emily have to make a decision to stay or move to another town…

I highly recommend Christmas in Winter Hill, by Melody Carlson. It has such a sweet story line and will wrap you in a blanket of Christmas filled with joy, hope, and thankfulness. 

Monday, December 9, 2019

It's Just Not Christmas Till...

Christmas is a huge holiday for my family; we start decorating the day after Halloween and listening to Christmas music a few days before November. One thing we have always done is watch a few “have-to-watch” Christmas movies though out the season and at specific times.

Over the years it has gotten to the point where it just doesn’t seem like Christmas unless we sit down as a family and watch these five movies…
Miracle on 34th Street// On Thanksgiving day we usually watch this after the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. There is nothing like seeing Susan’s faith in Santa being restored and all of New York cheering on Santa Clause as he tried to prove the Chris Kringle is indeed his tree identity 

Christmas Vacation// Even though it’s not the first Christmas movie of the season we watch, it just doesn’t seem like the Christmas season till the opening song of Christmas Vacation plays in the opening scene 

Home Alone// I remember the very first time I saw this movie; I was about seven years old and my dad was completely dreading the experience. He was fully anticipating an element of a wish being granted and a full on child film, but everyone ended up completely loving it and now we have to watch it every Christmas

A Christmas Carol// Every Christmas Eve we always watch the George C. Scott Scrooge while we wait for our Christmas day deserts to finish baking

It’s A Wonderful Life// After all the presents have been open, the food eaten, and the kitchen and dinning room cleaned, we always sit down to watch It’s a Wonderful Life. I always love the end when George Baily runs through the streets of Bedford Falls feeling grateful for all his life and everything he has 

Saturday, December 7, 2019

Happy Hour Time

Well howdy, howdy, weekend – fancy meeting you here! All I can say is yay for the weekend! Is anyone else dragging their feet a little bit with their Christmas shopping this year? As you know I love the Christmas decorations, but I am slightly dreading the crowds at the mall…online shopping might be my bff this year. Here’s to a wonderful weekend spent with friends and family and many wonderful memories to be made. Cheers! 

“Maybe the journey isn’t so much about becoming anything. Maybe it’s about unbecoming everything that isn’t really you, so you can be who you were meant to be in the first place.” 

Drink Special! 
1 ounce tequila
1 ounce heavy cream
1 ounce white crème de cacao
½ ounce white crème de menthe
Ice cubes 
Cocoa powder for garnish
Shake liquid ingredients with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with cocoa powder

Around Town!
Nashville, TN: Holiday Lights at Cheekwood, December 7 - January
Franklin, TN: Rodger and Hammerstein’s Cinderella at The Factory at Franklin, Sunday. December 8, 2:00pm
Seaside, FL: Holiday Market at Seaside Lyceum, Sunday, December 8, 7:00pm
Harrisonburg, VA: Singing Light at Eastern Mennonite School, Sunday, December 8, 7:00pm
Louisville, KY: Burnch with Santa at The Galt House Hotel, Saturday, December 7 – December 22

Friday, December 6, 2019

Rifle Paper Co. Christmas

Is it just me or are Riel Paper Company’s 100% on point 100% of the time? They have to be one of my top three favorite places to go to for Christmas wrapping paper, greeting cards, and the only place I’ll go to for a super cute, whimsical advent calendar. I always cheat with it a little and open up the next days window right before I go to bed because I know I will forget to if I wait till the morning, plus, I always love seeing what’s hiding behind each window!
I just love the old fashioned writing they use for the front of the greeting cards, and they always seem to have a Nutcracker design which always completely makes me swoon. Here are a few of my favorite Rifle Paper Co. items from this year!

Friday, November 29, 2019

Black Friday Sales

To be honest, I’m not really sure if lining up outside a store thanksgiving night and waiting for the doors to open at exactly midnight is still a thing, but I completely love the fact that over the years Black Friday has turned into a weeklong sale that you can shop from the comfort of your own bed. 

Even when it was a thing I was never into going to the mall on Black Friday, bright and early, fighting your way through an endless seas of shoppers, all in a panic and on a mission. Today I am definitely thankful that I can drink some hot chocolate, put a few items in my cyber shopping bag, do a little Christmas shopping, and get some great deals without the stress!

Here is all the sales, along with the codes! Be sure to check back later on today for updates! 
Abercrombie// 50% off entire store plus free shipping on all orders
Anthropologie// 30% off everything
Ann Taylor// 50% off everything with code: BLACKFRIDAY
Asos// 30% off everything with code: BIG30
Banana Republic// 50% off
Barrington Gifts// 10% off $150 or more, !5% off $250 or more, 20% off $350 or more
Country Club Prep// up to 30% off site-wide
Free People// 50% off sale
Gal Meets Glam// 40% off coats
Gap// 50% off everything with code:BLKFRIDAY
H & M// 30% off everything plus free shipping
J. Crew// 50% off regular price items and 60% off sale styles with code: FRIDAY
J. Crew Factory// 60% off everything
Jack Rogers// 30% off new arrivals with code: BF2019
Joules// up to 40% off almost everything
Kate Spade// 40% off everything with code: TGIBF
Kiel James Patrick// 25% off site-wide with code: COZYCABIN
L.L. Bean// 20% off order with code: THANKS20
Lake Pajamas// Sale on Sale
Lands’ End// 50% off full-price items
Loft// 50% off purchase with code: FRIYAY
Madewell// 30% off entire purchase
Nordstrom// up to 50% off
One Kings Lane// 30% off sitewide plus an extra 10% off orders over $600 with code OKLCYBER10
Pottery Barn// 25% off plus free shipping with code: BLACKFRIDAY
Ralph Lauren// Get 40% off when you spend $125 or more
Sacks// up to 50% off designer sale
Serena & Lilly// 25% off everything with code: THANKFUL
Shopbop// 15% off orders $200 or more, 20% off orders of $500 or more, 25% off orders of $800 or more
Sugar Paper LA// 30% off everything
Talbots// 50% off one item till noon, 40% off entire purchase until midnight, and free shipping on orders $150 or more
Tory Burch// 30% off full-price styles and up to 60% off sale styles
Tuckernuck// 20% off everything sitewide, 25% off orders over $500, 30% off orders over $1000
Vineyard Vines// 40% off favorite styles with code BLACKFRI19
West Elm// 15% off $150 or more, 20% off $200 or more, 25% off $1000 or more, 30% off $3500 or more
White + Warren// 25% off sitewide
Williams Sonoma// up to 75% off black Friday
Z Gallerie// 50% off everything

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Sale Kickoff

Who else is beyond excited for the biggest sale week/weekend of the year?! Because, I for one, am over the moon about all the current and upcoming sales. Listening to Christmas, sipping hot chocolate, and shopping from the comfort of my own bed…could the day after Thanksgiving get any better?
Over the years Black Friday and Cyber Monday have seemed to turn into Black Friday and Cyber week, which I do not mind at all! One of my favorite is the Shopbop sale. They literally have everything on their website: all my favorite designers, a look for everyone, and not to mention an fantastic selection of shoes and handbags. Shopbop is currently having their buy more. save more event and you can save up to 25% on full-price items and 75% on sale items with code MORE19!
Blazers have to be one of my favorite fall and winter items. I just always love how classic they look and the plaid on this blazer is just so beautiful!  You can find it here!
During the wintertime I pretty much live in leggings and a sweater and Vince sweaters have to be one of the most comfortable and softest sweaters out there! I absolutely love the cut of this sweater. You can shop it here!
Speaking of leggings….Love the fabric and finish of these pull on pants – they are so flattering and make for sleek look. Click here to shop them!
The season for holiday parties is about to be in full swing! Gold dresses are always just so beautiful and them seem to be pretty flattering on basically anyone for the most part. Shop the amazing dress here
My scarf collection is up there with my handbag collection, and this one is just so beautiful; you can’t get any more classic than a window pane scarf! You can find this scarf here!
Tory Burch always has some of the most beautiful tote designs and this one is at the top of my list. The material is so durable and the print, I just can’t get enough of it! You can find this tote here!
It honestly took me a while for this type of shoe to grow one me… I used to not know what to think of the straps but now I am completely in love with this style of shoe! Find this classic leopard flat here!

Thursday, November 21, 2019

Holiday Dresses

There’s a part of me that strongly wishes that people still had gatherings at their house like they did in the 1950s/1960s where you had to wear a cocktail dress every Friday and Saturday night. There is just something about that period in time that seems so much more upscale and classic than things do today. 
Luckily, during the holiday season there are a few occasions where we can channel our inner 1950s selves and dress a little bit more old school than we normally would. Every year when November finally rolls around and Christmas music and decorations are finally acceptable, I can’t get enough of red, greens, and plaids, and all the holiday dresses this year are so on point it’s ridiculous. Here are a few of my favorites from this holiday season. 

Sunday, November 17, 2019

Sunday Night Thought

Lizzie McGuire Reboot

Who else is super excited about the reboot of Lizzie McGuire!? I still can’t believe we get to find out what thirty something Lizzie is up to now! Personally, I am hoping that Lizzie is completely crushing life in New York City, secretly have my finger crossed that she still either ends up with Gordo or Ethan Craft… and I am so torn over if I would like to see Kate in the reboot or not – the sight of her still makes me nervous {yikes!}.
A couple days ago I started to watch a few episodes of Lizzie McGuire and I had total middle school flashbacks. The butterfly hairclips, AOL instant messenger. platform sandals, and the v-tech telephone {who else spent house on 3-way calling?}.  There were times when I was thirteen and I would turn on Lizzie McGuire and felt like she was living the day I just had; the show was so ridiculously relatable in t the best way. 

Then there was cartoon Lizzie, aka, the perfect 2001 middle school girl inner monologue. By the way, was inner Lizzie the original bitmoji? And was Gordo an adult trapped in a middle schooler’s body, because I feel like I have Gordo like thoughts watching the show as an adult. 

Monday, November 11, 2019

Guest Post :: It'll Last Longer: Why You Should Print Photos

I have turned into such a huge fan of photography over the years. I always love how pictures have the ability to capture emotions and small details that you may not have noticed in person. It always seems that we take more photos during the holiday season than any other time of the year. In the digital world I can honestly go months without printing off an actual picture. However, once I do, and I have it framed I always wonder why I didn’t do it sooner. Today Shane is guest posting and sharing all the reasons you should print off photos!
Photography nowadays has been more accessible to people thanks to the technological advancements of smartphones, allowing them to take quality photos anytime and anywhere. An estimated 1 trillion photos were taken in the U.S. in 2018 alone. However, despite the huge amounts of photos taken by each person, do some of them actually make it beyond one’s camera roll? Out of the hundreds of pictures on your phone right now, how many of them do you actually consider special? If your answer is ‘not much,’ then you’re not alone. People take photos to preserve memories, but because we take too many photos, they end up lost in the sea of other images we forget or don’t bother looking at a second time.
Compare our time to the time when printing photos was the norm. Photographs back in the day meant more because they are tangible and kept for safekeeping. Other than digital photos have yet to be developed as they are now, people print photos as a way to look back at past experiences and show them to future generations. 

These photos are more intimate and appear rawer, something that digital photography cannot replicate. You have apps that let you use filters and replicate the effect of film photography back in the day, but they fall a bit short both in appearance and substance. Nothing beats the tactile feeling of having a photograph in your hands, which is why you should consider printing your photos today.

Why You Need Print Over Pixels

More people are getting into the analog revolution as a reaction to the overwhelming amount of digital devices that are involved in everyday living. People are once again paying attention to the classic gadgets from previous eras like cassette players, vinyl turntables, and film cameras. Nostalgia and technological fatigue have made printing photos cool again.

Create an Actual Photo Album

Most kids these days will never truly appreciate the joys of sifting through photo albums of their younger years and reminiscing about how simple and lovely their lives were back then. Seeing a thick book of old photos of you is a feeling that will never be matched by posting your everyday escapades and uploading your travels on social media.

Decorate Your Wall With Photographs

There was a time when posters from magazines and specialty stores took up a huge space in every adolescent’s room. Photos are no different. Hang or stick your printed digital photographs, film, or Polaroid photos on the walls of your room. Surround your room and yourself with memorable people and intimate moments captured in photos, making you remember them all the time and give you a little something to start and end your day.

Invest in Canvas Photographs

Consider printing an iconic photograph on a canvas and make it appear like a commissioned work of art. Whether it is a portrait of yourself or a group photo of your family, having canvas prints is a worthy investment as they can be displayed in specific areas in your home to give it an affluent yet nostalgic atmosphere.

Try Out Instant & Disposable Cameras

Forget the complications of importing photos to your computer, installing the driver software, and loading specific printer papers on your printer just to get a quality print of your photo. Try using instant and disposable cameras and aim, click, and print away quality photos to your heart’s desire.

Compile a Printed Portfolio of Your Works

If you’re an artist looking to land a job or stepping up your creativity, ditch your digital works and slowly build up your printed portfolio instead. While digital artworks and photographs can be as beautiful, the allure and work behind a printed portfolio compare to nothing. Having a printed portfolio not only gives your interviewer a way to examine your work better, but it also shows that you are diligent enough to put in the extra effort when it comes to your work.