Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Favorite Things 2015!

I did a roundup of my favorite things from 2014 and you all loved it, so I thought I would do the same this year. A few of these products I have owned for quite some time now but they are just that good that they made the list!

Cannot get enough of my very favorite robe. It's basically like putting on the coziest blanket and nothing feels better after getting out of the shower. Sometimes on the weekend I have to remind myself to actually get dressed instead of wearing it all day. Oops!

These are new for me, a Christmas present from Stephen.  I think it's always fun to get an item or two at Christmas that will carry you into Spring and not just be for winter. Since our winter has been non-existent so far, they may get to be worn early! I think they will be so cute with cuffed jeans early Spring.

I received this handbag for my birthday and I have lost track on how many compliments I have received on it! I think it has a lot to do with the color. It is so pretty and fresh, compared to so many rich colors that are usually seen in winter. I am thrilled I will be able to take this into the next season. I also have really enjoyed the structure of it and decent size. This time around I wanted something not-too-big because I had gotten into a really bad habit of carrying around a ton of stuff I did not need.

Another little present {in my stocking} from Stephen. I love this handcream, especially for winter when my hands are always dry from the elements or constant hand washing {germaphobe!}.

Jo Malone Wood Sage and Sea Salt
I alternate between this Jo Malone and my newest perfume, below. I love them both! It's hard to describe a perfume in my opinion but these both are beautiful!

Prada Candy

A sweet new pair of earrings that will go with so much. I love the neutral stone! 

My first Kendra Scott piece, actually. I also got this and am so excited to wear it. Isn't it so pretty?

We are not ashamed of our Netflix addiction and this is what we use for streaming media. I have no complaints except someone needs to get me hooked on a new series! :)

I am a consultant and 100% stand behind these amazing skincare products. It's actually so much of a relief to know that each day I am taking care of my skin and I don't have to browse other skincare, inevitably wasting money on the trial and error. It is simply the best, there are proven results time after time, and the products are actually affordable. I LOVE these products and would be more than happy to assist you as well. You can simply leave1 a message in the comments or email me. I only wish I started using the line sooner than I did!

Would love to hear your very favorites from 2015 as well! 

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Buckeyes + My Go-To Christmas Apps + Sweets

First of all, thanks for all of your sweet congrats on our Baby #2 news, seen on instagram. We are so excited, very thankful, and I will update y'all soon! 

I'm so excited that Christmas is just a mere few days away, and we have lots of fun family time ahead. If you are like me, then food is a big part of the Christmas celebration. I love some Thanksgiving food but I reallllly love Christmas food. It's fun to have some recipes you can always rely on and make part of your yearly tradition which is why I am sharing some of my favorites today!

One of my very favorite sweet treats to start out with, Buckeyes, or as most people call them, Peanut Butter Balls! This is our family recipe that I grew up having and exactly how they should taste {in my opinion!} Certainly, one of those recipes everyone has a tweak for, but I really do love the tried and true recipe below. If you make them, let me know! My neighbors are enjoying half of the batch I made so we didn't eat them all before Christmas!

Buckeyes {Peanut Butter Balls}

Mix together:
1 stick butter
1 lb box confectioners sugar
1 1/2 cups peanut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla

Roll into small balls the size of a buckeye {about 1" round} Refrigerate for about 1 hour until set. Melt together in top of double boiler:
1 6 oz package semi sweet chocolate chips
1/2 of 2 oz. bar of paraffin wax

Insert toothpick in top of each peanut butter ball and dip into chocolate mixture almost to the top of the ball, leaving the top uncovered so it will look like a buckeye. Place on waxed paper until chocolate hardens.

These oyster crackers and a family Christmas gathering almost go hand in hand. They make a big batch {think the size of one of those big bags of oyster crackers} and are perfect for setting out on the counter in a small bowl for a quick, light bite to eat. They are also dangerous though, we always go back for one more handful, one more, and go back again, and again :) I also bagged some up yesterday for neighbors as a little Christmas treat.

This is my go-to cheese ball recipe. It's very simple but the flavors are perfect for pleasing everyone. I just made one ahead of time to be served on Christmas day. An appetizer that is homemade, but waiting in your fridge for the right time is key for holiday entertaining! Serve it with wheat thins or your favorite crisp cracker. Recipe note: I only wanted one cheese ball so I cut the recipe in half.

Pepper Jelly and Cream Cheese

No recipe required for this one and that is so ideal for this time of year. You can't spend hours on everything you whip up in the kitchen and this is just so easy, tasty and everyone loves it. Definitely a southern staple in our family! Take one block of cream cheese and empty a small jar of pepper jelly {I like red} on the top. Extra points if you find a gourmet pepper jelly made locally or at a specialty store. Serve with crackers. I already served this on Sunday night for a quick appetizer and it does not disappoint. 

I made this recipe last year and they were a hit. I know there are a ton of versions of this cookie, but this one seemed to hit it on all the marks. A definite keeper!

I also made these last year and I would definitely keep this recipe close by. A perfect sweet mini bite to bring along when you are visiting someone out of town, a baby shower, bridal shower, brunch, you name it! I also used ready made crescent dough to keep it extra simple.

I would love to hear any of your tried and true favorites! Hope you all are having a Merry Christmas week!

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Gift Guide: For Her!

What a fun little collection of gifts that any woman could enjoy! I have to admit, I would be happy with any of these sitting under the tree for me. From things in the stocking stuffer range {hello $5 boxers and cute ruffle boot socks!} to my favorite style popover, to a duffel bag that we all could use.  I hope you enjoy these last minute gift ideas! I mean, where has December gone? I know I am doing some major ordering and running errands right now to make sure all my bases are covered!

for her

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Christmas Around the House 2015

Welcome to the Chalk House for Christmas! I hope you enjoy what I pulled together this year. I did a lot of bright red and green, with pops of gold in Weeks' playroom and then kept things fairly neutral in the redesigned living room! I love having two different looks but they flow really nicely. I cannot believe Christmas is next week...how about you? Come on in!

A new ornament as of last year that my Mom got for Weeks....

Comfy and cozy with throws and pillows!

Peeking over into the living room. I knew I had to have garland and bows on those beautiful bookcases this year!

Sweet little figurines and a musical mailbox that Weeks got for Christmas last year. It plays so many Christmas tunes and lights up- he loves it!

I moved my desk around the corner into the living room and set it up as a temporary gift wrap station. It is so nice to have everything I need right there and not to have to go plundering for tape and scissors! Make sure to check out the Christmas tags. My sister opened her own shop, Golden Script, and is a really talented calligrapher. They are beautiful!

The sleeping pup pillow...I adore! A new birthday present for me this year.

My sister also did the print in the gold frame, you can contact her for special orders! Can you tell I like seasonal throw pillows? Never met one I didn't like.

The little angel below is one my Mom made umpteen years ago for me when I was really young. I still adore that sweet thing! 

Into the kitchen!

Fresh rosemary is potted in a new blue and white pot I found at Ross- this is my secret spot for finding really, really cheap blue and white pots. Shh!

I painted the blue and white chinoiserie ornaments :)

The zebra in the frame is actually a tray I bought last year and framed! Cheap art! 
The other painting is done by me.

In the mudroom my paperwhites are going crazy and just beginning to bloom now.

Thanks for reading along and I hope you are enjoying the Christmas season....