Friday, November 17, 2017

Holiday Drink Recipe: Cranberry Mojito

Express cowl neck sweater (on sale for less than $50!) // Express sequin mini skirt

Happy Friday everyone!! I thought we'd celebrate with a cute holiday outfit and a fun drink recipe (cheers to the weekend!). First, let's talk about this outfit from Express - I think we can all agree that Express has been killing it lately! I have to restrain myself from buying everything on their site haha. They just got in tons of new holiday party outfits - including this fuzzy sweater and sequin mini skirt combo, which I'm OBSESSED with. For starters, my fuzzy sweater is the most comfortable item I've ever worn (I may or may not have worn it with my pajama bottoms last night) and it's currently on sale for less than $50. Check out the new arrivals section on Express's website for more party ideas - think sequin pants, skirts and flirty holiday dresses.  Annnnnnd from now until 12/15, you can use code 2233 to receive $25 off your in-store purchase of $100 or more! (This discount cannot be combined with any other offers, exclusions apply.)

Now let's get on with the recipe! I'm not kidding you guys, I even surprised myself with how good this was (haha) - I've made mojitos several times before but this one BLEW ME AWAY. The mix of cranberry, lime and mint is both refreshing and beyond perfect for a holiday party. The recipe isn't hard either - these took less than 20 minutes to make. This recipe makes enough for four drinks, so if you're making it for a party you can double or triple the recipe, depending on the amount of people.

I hope our families are ready for Thanksgiving 'cause they have some Cranberry Mojitos coming their way! ;)

Cranberry Mojito, yields 4 servings
For the cranberry simple syrup:
- 1 cup fresh cranberries
- 1 cup sugar 
- 1 cup water
For each drink:
- 5 mint leaves
- 1 tablespoon lime juice 
- 2 ounces cranberry simple syrup
- 2 ounces rum
- Seltzer water

1. In a medium sized sauce pot, add cranberries, sugar and water. Turn the stove on medium heat and let simmer for about 10 minutes. You do not want the mixture to boil or the cranberries to burst. After all the sugar is incorporated and the mixture takes on a pink hue, take it off the burner and let it cool to room temperature. 
2. In each glass, add mint leaves and lime juice and muddle slightly to release the mint flavor. Fill the glass with ice.
3. Once the cranberry simple syrup is cool, fill each glass with 2 ounces of cranberry simple syrup and 2 ounces rum. Top with seltzer water and add some fresh cranberries for garnish. 

Let me know if you guys make this! I'd love to hear your thoughts!


*Thank you to Express for sponsoring this post

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Holiday Outfit with Glitter Pumps

 ruffle sleeve sweater, similar but less expensive HERE and HERE // Free People jeans
Valentino handbag // Jimmy Choo glitter pumps, similar but less expensive HERE
tassel earrings ($25 and they come in black too!) // MAC lipstick in "creme cup"

There are two things I love most during the holiday season: ruffles and glitter! This outfit combines the two - this ruffle sleeve sweater comes in a blush pink (the color I'm wearing) and black, and is perrrrrfect for the holidays. I wanted it to look even more festive, so I paired it with my Jimmy Choo glitter pumps! Yes, these pumps are an investment but I end up getting so much wear out of them during the holiday season that I think they're worth it (you'll be a hit at any Christmas party you go to!). I've had mine for three years now and still love them to pieces. I also found these glitter pumps that look almost identical and they're less than $100!

Something exciting is happening today - I'm taking over the @ballarddesigns Instagram account! Be sure to follow them for a sneak peek into their new store at Southpark Mall in Charlotte, N.C. (my favorite mall of all time!) The store is absolutely breathtaking and I can't wait for you guys to see it!



Wednesday, November 15, 2017

How to Style a Holiday Bar Cart

bar cart: Geneva bar cart (40% off with code FURNSALE)  // Ballard Designs champagne flutes // 

Since we're having a lot of family and friends come over for the holidays, I thought it would be really fun to put together a holiday bar cart! I was able to put this all together in one afternoon, so it is possible to do in a short amount of time if you want to have yours up and running before the holidays. The key is making your bar cart both functional and pretty to look at - here are some tips to keep in mind - 

*Booze: What types of drinks do your friends and family like, or do you plan to serve a special cocktail when they come over? If your BFF loves pinot noir, be sure to have a couple bottles stocked. I love to serve hot chocolate with either Bailey's or peppermint vodka, so I picked up a festive bottle of each for my cart. Chris and his friends enjoy whiskey, so we have a whiskey decanter on the cart too. 
*Mixers: Don't forget mixers if you plan to make mixed drinks! Juices, sodas, tonic waters and bitters are good to have on hand.
*Glassware: Whatever glassware you keep on your cart will depend on the types of drinks you plan to serve! We have whiskey glasses and wine glasses, all washed & ready to go.
*Tools: I added some accessories like straws, a bottle opener and an ice bucket (all found at Homegoods). You may also want to have a jigger, shaker, strainer and corkscrew to your cart. 
*Holiday decor: It's easy to add some extra "flair" to your bar cart for the holidays. I picked up the mercury glass Christmas tree from Homegoods, but you could also add festive candles or figurines. A jar of peppermints and candy canes added a pop of red to the cart (and I also like using the candy canes in cocktails!). You can pick up fake snow from any craft store and add it to the bottom of a serving tray for a really Christmas-y look, or even add some battery-powered string lights. 

If you have any ideas for a festive bar cart I'd love to hear them!! You can get my bar cart HERE and it's currently 40% off right now with the code FURNSALE :)


Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Casual Thanksgiving Day Outfit


ribbed turtleneck (sold out), similar HERE // plaid scarf (less than $30!) // black jeans 
similar black booties // Valentino clutch // MAC lipstick in "creme cup"

What happened to fall? It feels like it went straight from summer to winter in North Carolina! (Don't let the fall leaves fool ya - it's FREEZING outside!) I think for Thanksgiving this year, I'll have to opt for lots of layers, like this plaid scarf from Nordstrom (for less than $30). Although this chunky turtleneck is sold out, I did find this one that's equally as cute (and as warm). If you haven't ordered your Thanksgiving outfit yet, there's still time! Check out the new arrivals on Nordstrom's website for a bunch of both dressy and casual options for Thanksgiving Day (here's a tip: if you're on a budget, you can use the tools on the left to select the price range).

The next couple of weeks are going to fly by - I don't know if I've ever been busier!! I'm heading to Charlotte tomorrow and when I get back, we are having a few renovations done to our house (hopefully in time for Thanksgiving). Then Chris and I are traveling this weekend.  I do hope to have a post up soon on our Thanksgiving table - stay tuned!



*Thanks to Nordstrom for sponsoring this post

Monday, November 13, 2017

Gift Guide: For the Homebody

Happy Monday, everyone! I'm so excited to bring you my FIRST gift guide of the season! Every week on the blog I'll be sharing some gift ideas for the different people and family members in your life. For instance, we all know someone who is a homebody - loving anything and all things cozy and who prefers curling up in a robe with a mug of tea than going out for the night, and this gift guide is for them. Here are a few highlights from this gift guide that have my 100% recommendation:

Barefoot Dreams robe // This robe is pricy, but it's the SOFTEST ROBE I'VE EVER OWNED IN MY ENTIRE LIFE. If you were a fly on the wall in my house, you'd see me wearing it every morning and night! The material is so soft and cozy, and it makes a great Winter robe because it comes down to your calves, so it's very warm. It would make a great gift for anyone in your life, but I think my mom would particularly love this one. I'm wearing the robe in this blog post if you want to see a few more pictures. 

"Make mine a double" coffee mug // For only $18, I think this is a great and affordable gift for your BFF! I would include a couple packets of hot chocolate and some marshmallows in the gift bag to make it more complete. I'm not going to lie, I'm hoping one of my friends gets this for me this year ;)

pajamas & eye mask set // This gift is really cool because it's a sleep shirt and eye mask duo, and there are three different colors to choose from (check out the grey sleep shirt because it comes with an eyelashes eye mask that I think is adorable!). Any girl would feel like they were starring in the movie Breakfast at Tiffany's with this cute set! 

UGG slippers // These UGG slippers are on my personal Christmas list this year. I've owned several pairs of UGG slippers in the past and they are very high quality - the soles are thick (and perfect for anyone who has a dog because you can go outside with these slippers on and you don't have to change shoes!) The bow and pom-pom details on these really take the cake - they're adorable. 

Voluspa mini candle set // Last but not least, I would highly recommend this Voluspa mini candle set for anyone who likes candles! This is my favorite brand, and I'm guaranteed to be burning one in my house at any and all times. There are five different candles in this set (all in their best-selling scents) and it's a great chance for someone to try out the brand if they haven't before. These are more "luxurious" candles than your typical ones, so someone will really feel special if they receive this as a gift! 

If you guys have any requests for specific gift guides, shoot me an email or let me know in the comments! I've gotten requests to do a "Boyfriend/Dad Gift Guide" and if you want one too, let me know! 




Friday, November 10, 2017

15+ Thanksgiving Outfit Ideas

Happy Friday, everyone!! Since Thanksgiving is only a few weeks away, I thought it would be fun to share a bunch of different outfit ideas for Turkey Day. A lot of these items are still available (and if you order now it will definitely come in time for Thanksgiving), however you probably have some similar pieces in your closet that you can mix and match to create these looks. Read on for 15+ Thanksgiving outfit ideas!

 h&m cable knit sweater (only sold in stores), similar here // Free People scarf
Paige jeans (on sale!) // exact over-the-knee boots, similar but less expensive HERE & HERE

h&m sweater dress // over-the-knee boots, similar but less expensive HERE
pointed toe booties (sold out in my exact color), similar boots HERE

pointed toe booties (sold out in my exact color), similar boots HERE

 h&m turtleneck sweater (wearing as a dress) // buffalo check scarf
over-the-knee boots, similar but less expensive HERE & HERE

similar faux shearling vests HERE, HERE, HERE // white ribbed tee // Good American jeans

  long sleeve ruched dress (comes in six different colors!) // suede boots
Celine handbag, similar here // similar floppy hat // monogram necklace

Lush blouse // houndstooth skirt // exact over-the-knee boots, similar but less expensive HERE & HERE

cream turtleneck // Paige jeans // exact over-the-knee boots, similar but less expensive HERE & HERE

pointed toe booties (sold out in my exact color), similar boots HERE

 Express off-shoulder top (sized up to a medium) // Paige jeans (on sale!!) // over-the-knee boots, similar but less expensive HERE // Styled Collection coin necklaces

green bell sleeve sweater // Topshop scallop skirt (old) // cashmere infinity scarf

h&m turtleneck sweater // exact over-the-knee boots, similar but less expensive HERE & HERE

 I am sooo excited about Thanksgiving this year because both Chris's family and my family are coming for the day! Chris's dad is an amazing cook, and he wants to do all the cooking (which is AWESOME because I'm afraid I would mess everything up!), so all I have to do is clean and decorate, then eat! I am hoping to have a post up on our Thanksgiving table settings next week so stay tuned :)