Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Etsy

Etsy is a great marketplace for gifts, party supplies or just unique items. Now there is some creepy stuff on the site but at the same time, some great shops.

Almost every purchase I have made has been met with great customer service and products. (one took a month longer than promised so I will not be a return customer).

Here are a few other great shops, I could purchase from in the future:

Monday, October 28, 2013

Slow Cooker: Chicken Taco Soup

People: It is soup season! The best soup is the one you can plop in the slow cooker and have it ready by  the time you get home.

I made this recipe last week and it is a keeper.
Chicken Taco Soup
Adapted from original Recipe: Link

Ingredients

  • 5 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 small white onion, chopped
  • 2 (15 oz) can great northern beans
  • 1 (15 oz) can yellow corn, drained
  • 1 envelope taco seasonings
  • 1 (4.5 oz) can chopped green chilies
  • 1 (10.75 oz) can cream of chicken soup
  • 1 (14 oz) can chicken broth
  • Toppings: sour cream, guacamole, tomatoes, cheese, olives, tortilla chips

Directions

  1. Layer chopped onion on bottom of slow cooker; add chicken
  2. Top with beans and corn
  3. In a medium bowl, combine taco seasoning, chilies, soup and broth. Pour into crockpot.
  4. Cook on low for 10 hours
  5. Break up chicken before serving
  6. Serve with toppings of your choice.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Week: On My Mind

This week has been a great (and long) week. I took off today for a mental health break (aka the day I can finally fit in at Target with all the other ladies in their work-out gear at 11:00 am).


Here are some things I have been loving lately:

1 - Gap Eversoft Sweater - This thing is supersoft and has a chicly, cheap price tag. Why do I love Gap? They have "tall" sized shirts that help out us not so vertically challenged gals.

2 - A perfectly styled tailgate... Mandy is super talented and it helped that this Alabama grad picked up a few classy, styling tips. I love my team but hate gaudy sports gear.

3 - Betrayal - The hubs came upstairs last week and took one look at the television and said "What in the world are you watching?" I responded that yes it is trashy, mindless and a little lacking in the plotline, but I love it. You could summarize it as a soap opera for night.

4 - Thank you Southern Living for already stressing me out about the Thanksgiving menu. This pie will be made.

5 - FALL! This is my favorite time of the year and it is here in full force. The high today is 52... so fall may have overshot it a little too early. I will most likely be breaking out the boots for the weekend but people please leave your parkas in the closet a little longer. (Yes, I am talking about you lady crossing the street yesterday in 65 degrees with a fur-lined down jacket.)

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Erin Condren

Guess what came in the mail last week... my planner! I was so stinking excited that I have already put in all my important dates. Jut looking at the thing, I feel more organized.

Erin Condren is the way to go for all of you that are looking for planners. She has such fun designs! My favorite part of the layout are the month and day views. There are also precious stickers for important days and occasions.

A piece of advice is to order through Tiny Prints. They usually have great sales and you can save a few bucks!

- This is not a sponsored post, I am just OCD about organization -

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Guest Bedroom

I am on a roll with home decor updates... contain your excitement.

Coming from an apartment with one guestroom, we had to come up with something for the extra one. Already having silk curtains from our previous living room, I was determined to use them in the new house. Just my luck, it all came together.


1 - All of the bedding came from the trusty Pottery Barn. Those stellar lamps... a lunchtime Home Goods find.
2 - I originally wanted a gallery wall of pictures of friends but then thought that could end up super creepy.... That is a lot of eyes staring at guests while they sleep. So, we choose to frame pictures of trips we have taken since our wedding. Where did that precious painting of the fur babies come from? My talented Dad!
3 - I think all the colors came together nicely and luckily worked with furniture we already had. A win in my book!

Saturday, October 19, 2013

S'more Cupcakes


If you follow me on Instagram, you saw my intense baking session last weekend. The Hubs helped me bake 72 cupcakes for a work competition. Our team won with this precious S'more Cupcakes.

I recommend sticking the 24 cupcake number as opposed to feeding a football team like I did!

S’more Cupcakes - Makes 24 cupcakes
Ingredients:
1 ½ cups crushed graham crackers
¼ cup sugar
5 tbsp. butter, melted
1 box chocolate cake mix, used Duncan Hines Devils Food Mix
1 package (3.4 oz) chocolate instant pudding mix
1 ¼ cups milk
½ cup vegetable oil
3 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
6 full sized Hershey’s chocolate bars (1.55 oz each)
Marshmallows
Marshmallow Buttercream (see below)

  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • Line two muffin tins with cupcake liners.
  • In a bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs, melted butter and sugar. Drop tbsp. amount of graham cracker mixture into each liner and press down to form crust.
  • Bake crust for 4-5 minutes and transfer to wire rack.
  • Place the cake mix, pudding mix, milk, oil, eggs and vanilla in a large mixer bowl.  Blend on low speed for 1 minute to mix ingredients. Scrape down sides.
  • Increase mixer speed to medium and beat 2 minutes.
  • Pour into cupcake liners, on top of graham crusts.
  • Bake according to time on back of cake mix box (approximately 18-21 minutes) or until set. Set aside.
  • Break Hershey's bars into small pieces and melt on stovetop over boiling water. Stir until melted.
  • Spoon a tbsp. amount of chocolate on top of each cupcake, spreading to cover.
  • Chill cupcakes in fridge until chocolate is set.
  • Mix together Marshmallow Buttercream (recipe below).
  • When chocolate is set, frost cupcakes (or frost before serving)
  • Top frosted cupcakes with desired amount of marshmallows. Brown marshmallow tops with cooking torch.
  • Enjoy!

Marshmallow Buttercream
½ cup butter, room temp.
1 cup Marshmallow Fluff
2 cups powdered sugar
2 tbsp. milk

  • Mix butter and Fluff until smooth on medium speed until smooth.
  • Slowly add in powdered sugar with mixer on low.
  • Add in milk and turn speed up to medium and mix until all combined and smooth.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Pinning!

Pinterest is becoming a problem. I haven't opened a cookbook in months, I dream of DIY projects and am supplied with the perfect decor for every party imaginable. So... this actually seems like a good problem to have.

Here are a few recent favorites:


All pictures via Pinterest

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Haute Papier

I love a good party.... and even better, a stunning party! I am a true believer that it is all in the details.

Saying all that, I think it all starts with the paper. From the invitation to the follow-up thank you note, it sets the tone for the event.

Want a formal party? Throw in some embossing and Southern script. Want a fun event? Feature bright colors and modern fonts.

Haute Papier has some great products from beginning to end. I see some of their products in my future. The best part is they have a "Haute Box"- think Birch Box with paper. Amazing-ness!



Coasters / Notebooks / Stationery / Notepad / Haute Box

- Was not compensated for this post, just have a strange obsession with paper -

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Dining Room

I love a formal dining room and am so glad I can share with y'all. I would say we are officially done content with this room (let's be real, you are never done).

BEFORE

AFTER
Lately, I have had an intense love of blue and the ginger jars definitely fulfill that void. We also have a lovely new chandelier after 14 months of dangling wires (a perk of buying a foreclosure). The curtains were made with love by Mom. 

I truly do love this room!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Hattan Home

It is no secret I love online shopping and came across a precious site recently (thanks to Natalie's mention).

Hattan Home has some great finds and at some great price points.

Throw - Love the pom-poms touch; would be perfect for a nursery / Glass urchin - this is a great accent piece / Gold notebook - gold + paper = enough said / Votive - a table full of these would be amazing / Notecards - Rifle Paper Co. wins again


Monday, October 14, 2013

Fall Decor

Last weekend, we trekked up the road to Burt's Pumpkin Farm (only the best place ever)! We managed to score a great loot in record time (like 16 minutes from entrance to exit).

Burt's is great but a mecca for families. I mean I love family and all but do you really have to plop your newborn on top of every pumpkin for a photo opp? (You can all call me out on this when I have a bambino myself). The best part is the kids throwing pumpkins... when the sign says handle with care; this is all taking place while the parents are fighting over which pumpkin to put at the front door... cheap entertainment, I tell you!

Here a few fall decor pics from around the Williams casa:

We are hosting our first big holiday this year and I could not be more excited. I wanted to have some fall touches but incorporate my china and new blue dishes (I thought after three years, the china should finally get some use). I give you a Mercury-inspired fall tablescape. 

I love the Cinderella pumpkins and love some at the front door (note: we usually don't have huge arrangements in our foyer; this was an anni. surprise from the Hubs).

I am not a huge Mum fan but broke down for some red ones for the front door. The cotton wreath was an online purchase after an epic DIY fail. (Pinterst totally let me down on that one).

Happy Fall Y'all!

Friday, October 11, 2013

RTR

Describe fall in the South with one word. If you said "football," we are on the same page. Fall in my household consisting of a football-full DVR and Saturdays planned around SEC match-ups. Thank goodness for the 21st century and iPhone compatible game streams.

With fall football comes fall football fashion... As in you try not to recycle any outfits that consist of your favorite team's colors. I mean these games are usually documented on every social media channel, people!

Luckily, the Crimson Tide has some great fashion options... and when I mean great, I mean one that appeals to black attire (disclaimer: if you love houndstooth, go on with your bad self; me... I think it is way overused in the 50 mile radius of Bryant - Denny Stadium). You can't go wrong with black anytime, anywhere.



1 I have this dress in black and LOVE it / 2 Great dotted shirt / 3 Elephants... duh / 4 This jacket is divine; if only it will ever feel like fall / 5 A twist on the normal gameday dress but has the red to make it work / 6 I mean if we are talking about wants, I will throw this one in there

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Purse Perfection

I treat my purses like perfection. As in I baby them completely.

The hubs was a sweetie and got me a gorgeous Tory cross-body for Christmas one year. Well, the sucker turned blue after several wears. After searching everywhere, I turned to Pinterest. Much to my surprise I found a secret that worked for me. (I say "me" because it worked for me but may not work for you; test on your purse first, pretty please).

Buy some face wipes with a very low amount of alcohol. I bought the store brand from my local Kroger. Test the wipe on a small portion of your purse. Wait 2-3 minutes and make sure it does not turn. If it works, wipe gently over the color-turned portions of your purse until cleaned to your liking. Enjoy!


Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Thank You

Today is Year Three of the Williams Family! It has been three years of firsts, joy, laughter and togetherness.

Am I gonna sit here and say it has been three years with no tears or troubles? No, we are all human and go through ups and downs every day (If someone says otherwise, they are totally fibbing). Has it been better with the Hubs by my side? Yes, in so many ways.

With all that, I want to say Thank You to my husband:

Thank you for listening to me rant about the smallest things
Thank you for always accompanying me to the mall, even though that is the last place you want to be
Thank you for always running to my rescue whether it be a bug or a bully
Thank you for picking up fresh flowers when you have to run by the store
Thank you for making my coffee each and every morning
Thank you for listening to my deepest thoughts

Thank you for being you and thank you for letting me be me


- Just a few of my favorites from the day: from watching the football score and bestest friends to cake in the face and impromptu dances -

Friday, October 4, 2013

Blog Reads

TGIF (times a million). I don't know about you but I am ready for a fun filled weekend with my hubs and fur babies. Hope you have big plans too!

Now that Google Reader is gone, I keep up with all my daily reads on Bloglovin. I truly have no idea how I have come across so many, but I look forward to reading each and every one of them.

Here are a few additions to my previously mentioned favorites. And there are at least 120 more to add to that (those to come later :) ).


1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Tar-jay

Where can you buy a killer scarf, precious Thank You notes and wine? That answer would be none other than Target!

Seriously, I love this place. They of course have your standard staples but are killing it in their home lines lately!




You can bet my booty will probably be in line at my local store come Black Friday Thursday (whatever day it is now)!

- Target did not compensate me for this post... I am just a little obsessed with all their greatness -

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Fall Favorites

It is finally starting to feel like fall... and about time being October and all! I loooove fall. Could be the cooler temps and PSLs (Pumpkin Spice Lattes), or it could be better hammock afternoons and fall foliage. Whatever the reason, Happy Fall Y'all!