Hi Y’all, welcome to my first blog post, hope you find it fun and informative. I’ll be posting each week about fashion finds, foodie stuff, and the occasional party hosting.
This week is all about fashion because after all, it’s the most wonderful time of the year…the September issues of my favorite fashion magazines. I scoured the many pages of Marie Claire, InStyle and People Style to compile this list just for you. I have chosen a few major trends to highlight and linked my fav finds. Each piece is linked, and a picture is below for a visual.
This Fall it’s about bright tones, busy prints, and metallic. Red and purple are key tones this year, and tall red boots are the IT shoe, find them here. Need something to wear those red boots with? You can find that here and here. Leopard is back in for the season as well and I love leopard print paired with red. Pair this leopard bag with your red boots outfit! I also LOVE this leopard cape. Another hot shoe for the season is a pair of white boots. These go with everything and can be worn through Spring. Velvet is the go-to material this season for all dresses and tops (hello flashback to my high school days). This top is super fun and a double-score because it’s also cold shoulder. Have a fun holiday party to go to or a night out with the girls? This metallic dress is perfect and can be paired with a light sweater when it’s cold out. And of course, you definitely need a fun bracelet bag which is very hot right now. This one is my guilty little pleasure, please get in my closet. Or for your more practical side, this one is adorable. Happy shopping!
Growing up, we would make the occasional trip to Perini Ranch in Buffalo Gap, TX, just outside Abilene. Everything they have on the menu is fantastic, but their meatloaf, yum! I have never been a big fan of meatloaf, but this recipe is delicious! My husband and I make a big batch of these every Fall and freeze them to eat throughout the winter. This recipe makes 8 mini loaves, which serves 4 people, and they are even better after freezing them.
Perini Ranch Meatloaf
8 lbs. ground beef
2 large baking potatoes, skinned and grated
1 medium onion, chopped
2- cloves garlic
2 cans diced tomatoes
2 green bell peppers, seeded and chopped
2 jalapenos, seeded and finely chopped
4 tbsp. yellow mustard
4 tbsp. worcestershire sauce
1 tbsp. salt
1 tbsp. ground pepper
2 eggs, beaten
3 strips of bacon per loaf
1 bottle bbq sauce to brush on the top
Mix all ingredients, except bacon and bbq sauce, in a large bowl with hands. I separate the ingredients into thirds and mix in three bowls since there is a large amount. You can also mix these in your Kitchen Aid mixer but may need to finish by hand. Prepare to get messy! Form into 8-mini loaves on a sprayed cookie sheet. Top with strips of bacon and bbq sauce. Bake at 350 degrees for 40-50 minutes, check to see if these are done, you may need to cook a little longer. Once they are finished, let them cool a little and double-wrap each one in foil. Label and freeze! When cooking from frozen, thaw in the fridge overnight and remove one layer of foil. Loosen the last layer of foil and bake for 30 minutes or until heated, add extra bbq sauce, slice and serve.
It’s holiday party season y’all! Time to pile on the sparkle and velvet, your finest earrings and perfume, and make your rounds to all of the fun parties. This week’s outfit is dedicated to those holiday parties and it’s actually comfy but dressy, score! The center of attention is a fun pair of sequin leggings, or velvet leggings embellished with sequins. I pair mine with a classic but dressy black top, this one or this one, and you must have the perfect pair of heels. I prefer to add a pop of color for my heels, but classic black heels work too. Be sure to add a fun clutch and a statement necklace as well. Merry Christmas and party your sequins off!
For the past two years, I have made this toffee recipe at Christmas time. It’s a favorite for my Dad and me, maybe we eat most of it by ourselves and leave very little for the rest of the family. It’s a super easy recipe but you do need to pay attention to the color of the butter and sugar mixture, make sure it comes out the color of caramel. I use this pan to make my toffee bites, I have found it to be the easiest and you can peel the toffee out after it sets, plus it’s under $10! This recipe makes 24 bite-size pieces
1 cup unsalted butter
1 cup granulated sugar
¼ tsp. kosher salt
½ tsp. vanilla extract
12 oz. milk chocolate, melted
1 cup crushed almonds
In a heavy saucepan, combine the butter, sugar, salt and vanilla extract. Cook over medium-high heat with a silicone spatula or wooden spoon until butter melts, stirring constantly. Really stir constantly, don’t just come back to the pan every few minutes. Bring mixture to a boil, and continue boiling (and stirring) for 5-7 more minutes, until the butter mixture is the same color as caramel. Pour the toffee mixture into the silicone pan. I use a cookie scoop and fill each hole about 1/3 full of the toffee. This process should be done quickly because the toffee hardens fast! Cool toffee in the silicone pan completely. I put mine in the fridge for 30 minutes to expedite the process.
When the toffee has set and cooled, spread the melted chocolate over the top of the toffee. Immediately sprinkle with the crushed almonds. Allow the candy to set, I expedite in the fridge for an hour. When the candy has set completely, push each bite out of the silicone carefully. Store in an airtight container. These can also be frozen for up to two months to enjoy later.
This week I’m taking a different approach and focusing on my favorite beauty products you can add to your Christmas wish list. I use each and every product I have listed here so these are tried and true. My skin is very sensitive, like don’t even look at it, so each of these products are safe for sensitive girls. My absolute favorite foundation is a BB cream and Dr. Jart’s BB Cream is by far the best I’ve found. It’s the only cream that is truly sensitive enough for me to use without drying my skin or giving me unwanted bumps. It has light, non-greasy coverage and stays all day. I have very fair skin, so I use the light-medium.
Focusing on the eyes, I use the Sephora eye pencil in matte black. It goes on smooth and lasts for several hours without running. The best part is the price, only $10!! I am so obsessed with eye palettes, Santa usually leaves one in my stocking each Christmas and these have been my favorites. The Bobbi Brown Luxe Nudes eye palette is versatile and goes with every day outfits, or fancy date night outfits too. The Stila matte and metal palette is the best for everyday use and the colors are so pretty!
My favorite every day blushes are the Sephora contour pots. They have so many colors and they are affordable at $14 each. My favorite color is Sweet on You. The hands down, best mascara I have come across is the Dior Show mascara in black. It’s pricey but far exceeds anything out there. It’s well worth the splurge!
My go-to nude matte lip stick is Mac Crème de Nude, and it looks gorgeous under the Lip Slip One Luxe Clear Gloss, which actually more of a light pink. For a fun Christmas party or date night, the absolute perfect matte red lipstick is L’Oreal Blake’s red, it’s the perfect shade of red and it stays all night! And I can’t leave the house without a spritz of my favorite perfume, the classic Coco Chanel Mademoiselle. When I get home and wash off all this fun make up, I always apply First Aid Beauty’s Ultra Repair Cream. It’s so affordable and perfect for sensitive skin.
Each year I struggle to find cute outfits to wear to holiday events. My office throws casual work parties during the day and I never know what to wear! This outfit is perfect for such an occasion and is comfortable enough to wear all day at work, but appropriate for our casual Christmas party. I found this burgundy cardigan last year at the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale and I wear it constantly! These faux leather leggings are so versatile and you can wear them with pretty much anything. I plan on pairing mine with a dressy top for Christmas parties at night. For my day, casual party, I paired mine with leopard heels, a white t-shirt, and a statement necklace. And I topped it off with a cute adorable clutch by Rebecca Minkoff. Happy shopping!
This is one of my favorite winter stew recipes to make for my husband, and for myself. I don’t know why I call it cowboy stew, but it is a variation of a Perini Ranch recipe I used to make and I started making one of my own. This stew is so easy to make, it’s light because of the broth base, and it goes perfectly with homemade skillet cornbread! It also freezes well, which is great for meal prep or saving for the holidays when your family comes into town.
1 cup diced white onion
1 package cubed tender stew beef, or cubed brisket
1 tbsp. ground cumin
1 tbsp. chili powder
1 tbsp. Onion powder
1 tbsp. garlic powder
2-32 oz low sodium containers beef broth
1 small can hatch green chilies
1 can diced tomatoes, with liquid
1 package frozen sliced okra
¾ package of frozen sweet corn
Peel and dice one cup, or one half, of a white onion. Saute the onion on low, in a large stock pot for 5 minutes with 1 tbsp. oil, until tender. Add in the stew meat or brisket, make sure the meat is cut into bite-size pieces. Brown the stew meat and add salt and pepper. Add the beef broth, and the rest of the spices. Add the green chilies and diced tomatoes, simmer on medium-low for 15 minutes. Add the okra and sweet corn, cover, and simmer for an additional 20 minutes. Serve with skillet cornbread.
Have you started making your Christmas list for Santa yet? I had a hard time at first making my list since we have a baby on the way. My brain is on full time baby mode. So when everyone started asking me for ideas, I was blank, but not for long. Some of these fabulous items are practical, some are frivolous. But, I’m hoping if I’m really good, Santa will leave a few of them under the tree for me. Have you heard that I love Kori Green jewelry yet? Because a custom piece of hers is on my list. You can find her pieces here, they’re so unique and gorgeous. I’m also hoping for a few Nordstrom tops or sweaters found here, here and here. Both pair of these boots are also at the top of my list this year, who doesn’t need a great pair of velvet over the knee boots? And these suede over the knee boots have been an obsession of mine since summer! I try to get a new pair of sunnies each year, but it’s been a while for me, and these Ray Bans are at the top of my list as well. They come in so many different colors and you can customize your own if you want! And lastly, I’m hoping for a new watch from Santa, and the MVMT watches are a favorite of mine and my husbands. This one is my pick for this Christmas. Happy shopping and Merry Christmas!!
Two weeks ago, I posted the Thanksgiving Menu I serve each year to my family. My fresh apple pie recipe was included in the long list of items I posted. But, it’s so tasty, I felt like it deserved its own post. The pie is a very simple recipe and doesn’t take a lot of time. I will admit, if I’m making it for Thanksgiving, I cheat a little and use a store bought pie crust. I have people ask me for the recipe all the time and I’m always willing to share! I also sometimes make it for Christmas Eve with my mother’s side of the family, when we have Mexican food.
Fresh Apple Pie
½ cup sugar
½ cup packed brown sugar
3 tbsp. all-purpose flour
1 tbsp. ground cinnamon
¼ tsp. ground ginger
¼ tsp. ground nutmeg
7 cups thinly sliced mix of granny smith and gala apples (6-8) apples
1 double pie crust (Pillsbury)
1 tbsp. butter
1 egg white
In a small bowl, combine sugar, flour and spices; set aside. In a large bowl, toss apple slices with sugar mixture; toss well to coat. Line a 9-inch pie plate with half the pastry. Prick the bottom with a fork. Place apple filling into crust; dot with butter. Roll out remaining pastry to fit top of pie. Cut a few slits in the top or add fun leaf shapes for Fall. Beat egg white until foamy; brush over pastry. Sprinkle sugar and cinnamon on top. Bake at 375 degrees for 35 minutes, increase temperature to 400 degrees and bake an additional 10-15 minutes more until golden brown. Be sure to watch the edges for browning, and cover with foil if needed.
This breakfast casserole recipe is perfect for the holidays when you are hosting family overnight. It’s super easy and you can make it ahead and freeze it which is the best part. The best part is that it’s gluten-free for those of us who have an allergy, or a family member with one.
2 lbs. breakfast sausage
1 30 oz. package of shredded hash browns
6 large eggs
2 cups milk
2 ½ cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
Sautee the sausage in a large skillet over medium heat until browned. Remove from pan and drain. Cook the hash browns in the same skillet according to package. Turn off the heat and add sausage back into the skillet, and stir. Mix in 1 cup of the shredded cheddar cheese. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together eggs and milk. Add salt and pepper and whisk again. In a greased 9×13 casserole dish, spread out the sausage and hash brown mixture. Pour the milk and egg mixture evenly over the hash brown and sausage. Top with the remaining cheese and bake at 350 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes.
It’s so warm right now in Texas, makes me want to travel to Colorado so I can wear this outfit! This week I’m featuring a long classic black tunic sweater, paired with blue skinnies. This scarf is to die for and the print also comes in a poncho, how fun! And of course since I’m pretending to be in Colorado, I’m wearing my favorite Sorel snow boots. And y’all these boots are HALF OFF right now, you best get yourself some. Happy shopping!