Cold Weather Must Haves – Sweaters

Last week I started a cold weather must haves series and shared with you all my favorite scarves. This week I wanted to share the best sweaters for cold weather. We all want to stay warm without feeling and looking super frumpy – which is tricky to do! You of course have to shop for your body type. I have narrow shoulders so turtlenecks are good for me. If you have a larger bust a nice v-neck would be great. Cardigans are good for all and even better for layering!

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1. I recently got this iceblock turtleneck sweater when Madewell sale items were an extra 40% off and I LOVE it. The colors are great, it lands at just the right spot under your hips, and it’s boxy without being shapeless. 2. These long drapey cardigans aren’t always the most flattering but they sure are cozy. Try one made of a thinner material like the draped cardigan from Zara so it’s not quite as bulky. 3. The perfect apres ski sweater from J. Crew. Adorable, right? I’d wear with bright color jeans and boots. 4. Stripes and elbow patches! Nothing to not love about this sweater from J. Crew Factory. 5. I love bold colors and what better way to wear them in winter than this abstract fair isle sweater from J. Crew. 6. Cable knit is the most class sweater and I love the shape of this one from GAP. Ps. All of these sweaters are on sale (and some with an extra percent off!).

What sweaters are you wearing this winter?

Beet Pesto Recipe

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We are always look for interesting recipes to try and recently we found one recently that was totally awesome – beet pesto. You may think that word combination is actually an oxymoron, but let me tell you that this recipe was so interesting and delicious. Just like any pesto, the beets (almost the replacement for the basil in a traditional pesto) were blended with nuts (walnuts instead of pine nuts), oil, and cheese. What was most interesting was the use of beet juice in place of much of the oil so it wasn’t so heavy and oily – I think that’s part of what I liked it so much. I included the beet pesto recipe below because I can’t find the recipe online to link to.

Beet Pesto (serves 4)

1/4C Walnuts
8 oz. can red beets (save juice)
1 1/2 tsp chopped garlic
1 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp lemon juice
1/4C Grated Parmesan cheese

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Toast your walnuts in a non-stick pan.

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Blend walnuts with next 4 ingredients and mix in beet juice until desired consistency is reached. I used our Magic Bullet and it worked fine.

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Mix blended beet mixture with cheese.

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As directed on the original recipe we served the beet pesto over salmon. So good, so interesting! Enjoy!

Ps. Galic scape pesto is good, too!

Toddler Craft Project – Snowflakes

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This  month’s toddler craft project for our local Baby Bootcamp Stroller Friends play date is quite timely as we’re about to get 2 feet of snow where we live – we’re making snowflakes! These Popsicle stick snowflakes are great because they are simple to prep and then your toddler has free reign over how they’re decorated. It’s also a great way to use up random craft supplies you have – leftover glitter, old stickers, random yarn, etc…

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To make the snowflakes you need 4 Popsicle sticks. Use a glue gun to glue one on top of another until your snowflake is made.

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Then let your toddler at it with glue stick, glitter, stickers, paint, markers, whatever you have around the house.

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Last step, use some string, yarn, (which would look best) or even a pipe cleaner (as Z wanted to use) to tie around the snowflake to proudly hang up in your home!

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Always performing… This time she set up a stage (her princess potty that turns into a stool) and used her guitar (our old Guitar Hero guitar) and sang her little heart out. Not entirely pictured, I am sitting amongst chairs with all of her stuffed animals sitting on them so she can have an audience.

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Always rolling… He went from his jungle mat to that table in 2 seconds flat!

Cold Weather Must-Haves – Scarves

It’s been downright arctic in my neck of the woods lately – what about you? I have found over the years that the more appropriately dressed I am the less the cold bothers me. Gone are the days when I wear my ballet flats year-round (cold ankles!). I also think you really get used to bitter temps. That first terribly cold November day feels like your you will never stop shivering but by January you’re like “eh, what’s 20 degrees, no big deal.” Personally I find the more I’m outside the quicker my body gets used to the cold temps. All of that said… I have some cold weather must-haves that I love and I thought I’d share with you in the next few weeks. This week, everyone’s winter MUST – a scarf! I love a cozy scarf and here are a few that I have and love or are on my “list.”

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1. This kate spade Saturday Cableknit Pocket Scarf is genius! You don’t necessarily need gloves, you can just use the little pockets at the bottom of the scarf. 2. A chunky scarf. I love the scarves made by etsy seller LuluLoves. 3. Blanket scarves are all the rage this winter – they’re perfect for travel too when you start off needing a scarf and can convert to a blanket to get even cozier. I like this plaid one from Amazon of all places. There are a million way to wear these, just search on Pinterest. 4. Nothing better than the classic Burberry scarf. I’ve had mine for years and still wear it all the time. 5. Nothing says cozy more than fur. This Toscana shearling infinity scarf from J. Crew could be worn with everything all winter.

What are your favorite scarves?

Long Weekends

A long weekend is one that is made longer by adding additional days. By definition there is nothing to dislike about long weekends, am I right? I hope you got to enjoy yesterday’s holiday in celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. I spent mine up north with family and thought I’d share a few highlights of the weekend if you don’t mind!

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Long weekends call for fun suitcases (not pictured, my husband’s boring black suitcase!). Btw, there’s been mixed reviews but I personally LOVE the kate spade Saturday weekender, that zipper pouch at the bottom to hold shoes is my fave. Plus you can always score one on sale because $180 is a bit much for what it is in my opinion.

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This girl in her ski outfit is just the cutest ever.

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And she’s really loving the hitting the slopes! She just tee-hee’s the entire way down. We can’t wait to get her in a lesson so she can really learn.

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My husband skied Saturday and I skied Sunday…and enjoyed some apres ski beverages both days because – long weekend!

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I finally had time to start this book. Did you read it yet, was it good?

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And this guy didn’t get to ski but he did wear his long underwear to stay warm. A baby in long underwear is so adorable.

Hope you had a great long weekend too! And there are only 4 days til next weekend, woohoo!

Mindy Kaling Quote

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I read this quote recently and couldn’t agree with Mindy more. I sometimes ban myself from the mall and can almost never browse through Whole Foods because I have no will power when it comes to clothes and food. A beautiful sweater on sale at J. Crew? Need it. A piping hot plate of yummy nachos? Give them to me. The best part of this quote is the irony – if you have too much food, you can’t fit into your clothes, ha! Anyways, thought I’d share this, what are your vices?

Homemade Granola Bars

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Granola bars are a staple in our house – a good, nutritious (most of the time), and filling snack. It’s fairly simple to make your own granola bars so I thought I’d share my favorite recipe that we use when we make them. Plus, you can completely customize the dried fruits you use so it’s exactly the flavor you want – or even throw in some chocolate chips if that’s more your speed! I base my recipe on Ina Garten’s Homemade Granola Bar Recipe.

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You need to use oats and wheat germ for granola bars but everything else you add is really up to your own taste. For this recipe I used coconut, dried cranberries, and apricots.

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This recipe calls for 2/3C honey which feels like a lot but really helps bind everything together. Heating it with the butter and brown sugar makes it easy to mix up with your dry ingredients.

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I used a 9 x 13 inch pan (Ina’s recipe calls for an 8 x 12 pan) because I like a thinner granola bar. These are super sticky so I just used the back of a spoon to spread the mixture evenly in the pan.

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Wrap in parchment paper if you’re taking on to go. These are so good, enjoy!

Handmade Valentine’s Day Cards Class – Sign Up Now!

Just a friendly reminder that I am teaching a class Thursday, February 5th to make beautiful, handmade Valentine’s Day Cards. There are only 6 spots left in the class so SIGN UP NOW!

I’ve changed up my curriculum (so to speak) this time and there will be 3 made cards as samples that students can make themselves OR they can simply make whatever they want with the supplies provided. Here’s a preview of one of the cards:

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And we’ll be making envelope liners too to make these cards that much more special. Hope to see you there!