The one special day of the year when we all stop to make brunch reservations and thank our Moms for being our Moms is here. Mother’s Day is this weekend. I personally have been so busy that I have not even thought about what to get the special lady in my life. I know most of you are busy as well, so I put together a gift guide. Whether you are on a budget or splurging for Mom, there is something sure to fit your price range on this list.
I’ve heard nothing but good things about Chrissy Tegan’s new cookbook, so grab mom a copy and get to cookin’ in the kitchen with her. Whipping up a Mother’s Day feast from the book can be the perfect celebration.
I love these dainty champagne flutes that would be perfect for entertaining for girl’s night or for hosting a shower.
Brunch and Flowers
On a budget? Take your mom out for brunch of coffee and grab a bouquet of flowers from Trader Joe’s (they have beautiful cheap bouquets. My favorite brunch spots in Charleston are Halls Chophouse, Southerly, and High Thyme.
Spa days are a great gift but can sometimes get a little pricey. If you have siblings this would be a great gift to go in on together. That way you can treat your mom to a “treat yourself day, without breaking the bank. PS-let her know to stop by the spa store to check out my Hermosa pieces sold there.
At the end of the day, your mom is not going to care what you get her, just set aside some time to spend with her, and tell her how much you love her.
If you’re like me, your week is full of Holiday parties and family celebrations, sometimes multiple stops each night. I love getting to see old friends, new friends, and family members during this time of the year, and I also love getting to eat yummy food and drink festive drinks. Since most Holiday open houses ask that guests bring a plate to share, I thought I would share five delicious (and easy) appetizers that I found on POPSUGAR for you to make you decision on what to make a little easier.
I love dates. To me, they are festive and remind me of the Holiday season. Add bacon and you have yourself a killer app. Just remember to double the recipe because these things will be gone the second you set them down.
What’s a Holiday party in the south without deviled eggs? Spice up your typical eggs with this recipe. Fresh herbs offer a more savory and festive looking spin. Douse with a little paprika at the end to tie in red and green.
Everyone enjoy spending time with loved ones, eating way too much, and drinking a few extra cocktails this week. Safe travels and Happy Holidays!
While I am officially done with Christmas shopping, I know there are plenty of procrastinators out there who are just getting started. To all of you who played the wait game: You have twelve days to buy, wrap, and ship presents. To help you avoid the traffic, and more importantly, the mall, I have put together a Holiday Gift Guide for all the special people in your life.
Gifts for the Hermosa Lover
Give the gift of Hermosa for Christmas and you are guaranteed to get major brownie points! My website is stocked with one a kind pieces, and shipping and gift wrapping are FREE through Christmas!
Gifts for Her
Whether shopping for your Mom, sister, girlfriend, friend or any other special female in your life, you will be sure to find something she will love from this list.
Are you traveling for Christmas this year and don’t want to show up empty handed? Or maybe you are going to your significant other’s parents for the first time. These small but thoughtful gifts are the perfect way to show your appreciation and impress! Remember if you don’t have time to order something online, pick up a $15 bottle of wine at your local bottleshop!
Are you completely stumped on what to get someone? Or shopping for the person who has it all or the new home owners? Try picking up something for their house. It can be as simple as a tree ornament or as elaborate as a piece of decor (only if you truly know their taste). Websites such as Food 52 offer original pieces at affordable prices.
Need more ideas? Websites like POPSUGAR, Tasting Table, and Garden and Gun have compiled Holiday Gift Guides to help you find a great present for everyone on your list. Happy last minute shopping and Happy Holidays to all.
I am so excited Thanksgiving is just a few days away! A whole day with family, friends, great food and football is just what I need after a long fall, and before what is soon to be the “happiest (and busiest) season of all.”
Though I will not be hosting this year, I have played Thanksgiving (Friendsgiving) hostess a few times, and know how stressful planning and cooking for the Holiday can be. With my past experience along with some tips a friend passed along from the free Williams & Sonoma Thanksgiving Technique classes she has been attending, I put together five tips for hosting a stress free and delicious Thanksgiving.
Prep food in advance
I don’t know about you, but I would much rather spend my Thanksgiving morning sipping on a Bloody Mary and watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, rather than cutting vegetables. I think most would agree. Use the day before or even two days before to chop veggie essentials and store them in your fridge. Chop your celery and onions up to two days before Thursday and store in an air tight container in the fridge. Peel and chop your potatoes for mashed potatoes the day before and submerge in ice water (to keep from browning) and refrigerate. TIP!: Be sure to chop your potatoes in even sizes, to ensure they cook evenly.
2. Choose linens and flatware, and set table a few days in advance
This seems like a minor detail, but having an exquisite table set can bring your hostess score from a 10 to a 12. You can find festive (and cheap) linens at places like World Market or Home Goods, and you can pre-order flowers for centerpieces to be picked up Wednesday evening. Putting last touches on your table like silverware and flowers the morning of, will make your life easier.
3. Invest in a cooler and meat thermometer
If you’re lucky enough to have an extra fridge in your house, that is great. If you are not so lucky, invest in a cooler. Crowding your fridge will result in cooling your stored food unevenly. A cooler will give you more space to store foods before the meal, and the inevitable leftovers. A meat thermometer is also a must! Opening and closing your oven to check on your bird not only makes your kitchen warm, but it lets out the air from the oven, causing your turkey to take longer to cook than planned. Use a digital meat thermometer to monitor temperature, and ensure a juicy, tender bird everyone will love.
4. Brine your turkey
Some people say brine, some people say don’t brine. I say brine. I have had turkeys both ways, and I have to say there is just something wonderfully delicious about a turkey that has been soaked in salt and spices for hours. You can do a traditional salt water brine, or you can purchase pre-packaged brine, such as this Williams & Sonoma one. Make sure you buy brining bags, or use an extra cooler for this prep exercise.
5. Use short cut kits
I am usually not a fan of pre-packaged short cut kits. But after hearing about how tasty the Williams & Sonoma recipes were, I feel the need to promote stress free over hassle. Things like gravy, stuffing, cranberry relish, and green bean casserole are all Thanksgiving staples, but quite honestly taste similar across the board. If you want to get a few things off your plate, I suggest trying some of these Thanksgiving Kits. Remember, gravy, cranberries, and stuffing can all be made ahead of time and stored in your fridge so all you have to do is reheat on Thanksgiving morning!
Gravy: Since you can never be sure just how much drippings you will end up with, use this base along with some store bought stock, and add drippings in the end giving this already delicious sauce even more flavor.
Stuffing: Instead of drying out bread, use this box kit. I think it has a little more pizazz to it than your average Stove Top box.
Cranberry Relish: I think I am one of the only people who looks forward to the cranberry relish. Most of the time, it sits on the table untouched, so don’t waste time making it from scratch. Grab this jar, put it in your most beautiful serving container, and throw the empty jar in the bottom of the trash can!
Bonus Tip: Don’t try to do it all. Have guests sign up to bring a side dish or appetizer. I think one of the best Thanksgiving meals I have ever had was in Denver, when everyone signed up to make their signature family recipes. We ended up with a bacon encrusted cajun turkey, mac and cheese, squash casserole, Brussels sprout salad, 10-Layer chocolate cake and so many other dishes I would have never even thought to incorporate in my menu.
A few weeks ago, I celebrated my 28th birthday with ten of my best friends at Candlefish. Located in the heart of downtown Charleston, this beautiful store celebrates everything in the world of candles from the beginning inspiration to the final product.
We became Chandlers for the evening in our two hour candle making class. Our class was taught by Cat, who was very knowledgeable and articulate. She was great, and I could tell she loves her job at Candlefish. Upon our arrival, our table was carefully set up with each of our candle stations. We brought appetizers and wine to keep our minds and bellies fully inspired.
Our candle stations included a metal pan with two glass jars, two wicks, two popsicle sticks, four labels, a whisk, a ruler, a pen, a small glass measurement cup, and a metal beaker.
When you walk in, you can’t miss the The Candlefish Library. It is a curated selection of 100 unique fragrances labeled simply with a number from 1 to 100. The candles are placed under glass cloches that capture the fragrance within its dome. All of the Library candles are hand poured and hand labeled in the store by the talented chandlers.
We received a “library card” which helped us document and identify which scents were our favorite by jotting down notes about our favorites or not so favorites. Since smelling 100 scents would be way too overwhelming, we chose one scent from a curated collection of twenty candles.
After choosing each of our signature scents to use for our two candles, We hot glued our wicks to the base our two glass jars and filled out and affixed the labels.
I chose lucky Number 95, which is part of the wood family with nodes of mandarin, violet, cedar wood, and pachouli. One of my friends described it smelling like a “sexy surfer,” and I totally agree. The next step was to measure out our fragrance and soy wax and mix them together. We then had some down time to look around and shop while we waited for our wax to cool to a certain temperature. Candlefish doesn’t just sell candles, they have jewelry, candle accessories, coffee, prints, and other interesting gifts.
A few minutes later, the wax had cooled and it was time to pour! We gave it one more flick of the whisk and then distributed our wax into the two glass jars. We placed the popsicle sticks over the top yet flush with the wicks to ensure that they cooled straight up in the center. The candles then cooled overnight, and I came back the next day to pick them up.
We had the BEST time at Candlefish celebrating my birthday. I highly recommend it as a fun yet easy activity for anyone (even guys!) that likes candles. I can’t wait to go back to do another one. You can view their upcoming workshops listed here. Make sure you mention you read about them on the Hermosa Jewelry blog!
I have been trying hard to stick to a good work out routine and healthy meal planning this fall. I have found that everything is okay in moderation and honestly have to honor my cheat days. I have learned, however, that the more healthy yet flavorful recipes I find that satisfy my cravings and taste buds, the less cheat days I have to have.
Lets just face it, I’m never going to give up carbs or a piece of chocolate here and there, so the more healthy recipes I can find to offset my bowl of pasta once a week, the happier I am. Here are five fall recipes that have been hitting the spot at my house.
One pan, an oven, and some basic Asian flavorings is all you need for this recipe. I’ve never been able to get my veggies so caramelized, crisp, and tender all at the same time. This recipe is a knock out of the park!
I have made this twice in the last month. It is SO tasty, and SO simple. I typically like to have a meatless day of the week, so I have kept it vegetarian; however, adding ground chicken or beef would be an easy add on. Last week I even put the leftovers into taco shells for quiona tacos!
Confession…I ate the entire thing before I remembered I needed to take a picture for this post. Yes, it was that good. Put that brand new spiralizer to use for this recipe and you will have a scrumptious and textured salad on top of your lean piece of meat. PS-leftovers make a fabulous addition to a bed of lettuce for a Greek Salad the next day!
I put shrimp in parenthesis because I added it to my version of the dish. This is better than take out, and costs a fraction of the price (once you invest in the sauces and condiments you need.) For a low-carb meal, I actually used leftover spaghetti squash I had in the fridge as a substitute for the noodles. The flavors in this meal are insane. It’s a must try!
I LOVE creamy tomato soup. What I don’t love is the calories that come with it. If you feel the same way, meet your new go to recipe. It is SO healthy and so flavorful. I was lucky enough to have fresh tomatoes from a friends garden, but if you cant find good fresh tomatoes a few cans of San Marzano tomatoes will work just fine. I also roasted a red pepper to throw into the mix. Freeze some of your batch, and get your grilled cheese fixin’s ready yall, cause this recipe is a knock out for the winter!
Break out your apron and get to cooking any of these five fall recipes this week!
I have always found one common problem among all women: organizing and storing jewelry. I live by the philosophy, “if you can’t see, you won’t wear it.” This prompted me to create an organized way to display my massive collection of post earrings. I have a framed screen for my dangle earrings that hangs on the wall, but you have to pull it off completely to put the posts on. So, I decided I needed a display that I can easily reach around to put the backs of the posts on. My bedroom has a beach vibe, so I came up with this sweet Starfish DIY Post Earring Holder. This easy DIY project cost about $12 and takes no more than 15 minutes to create!
Jute and Nylon Ribbon- 2″ x 3″ ($3.99 at Michaels)
Small piece of scrap fabric
E6000 glue- 2 oz. ($3.99 at Michaels)
Large D-Ring Hangers- 2″ x .75″ ($2.88 at Ace Hardware)
A Nail + Hammer
Gather all of your materials.
Cut the ribbon at a length that will fit your collection of post earrings. I cut this one to 24 inches. The one in my bedroom is 36″ long and holds about 34 pairs of earrings. You want to cut a little extra for some room for your collection to grow.
Turn the starfish and ribbon over so the back is facing you. Line of the ribbon where you want to place it on the starfish. Put glue on the entire front of the ribbon that will cover the back of the starfish.
Pick up your D-ring and cover the back with glue. Then place on top of the ribbon on the back of the starfish. Lightly apply pressure to attach.
Cut a small piece of fabric that will cover the back of the starfish, the ribbon, and part of the D-ring. Cover fabric with glue and then place on top of the D-ring. Allow to dry over night to ensure maximum hold.
Cut the end of the ribbon at a 45 degree angle on the left and right corner to make a decorative edge.
Start pinning your post earirngs down the ribbon. I put mine in the holes of the lace + jute for extra hold. Put the earring backs on the backside of the ribbon.
Here is the photo of my personal starfish post earring holder.
Hammer a nail in the wall where you would like to hang your post earring holder. Hang the D-ring on the nail.
Here is the finished Starfish Post Earring Holder!
Let me know in the comments section what you think of this idea!
The third Sunday of June is quickly approaching, which means it’s time to celebrate the favorite men in our lives: Our Dads. Some of you might watch football and drink beers with your Dad, while others take out the sailboat on Sunday afternoons, and still others of you try on shoes while he fights off a nap in the comfy chairs in the Nordstrom shoe department. No matter how you choose to spend time with your Dad, we can all agree that these men have had and will continue to have a huge impact on our lives.
Whatever your relationship with him, he deserves love, hugs, and a little something special this Father’s Day. I have created a gift guide sure to help you find the perfect gift for the guy who does it all for us.
The Boating Dad
If your Dad loves to be out on his catamaran or Boston Whaler, then get him something he can use on it. I suggest a Yeti Cooler to keep his beers cold or GoalZero waterproof speakers. What’s even better about these gifts, is he can use them anywhere.
The Tailgating Dad
What Dad doesn’t love standing behind his grill entertaining guests and playing games at his Saturday tailgate? If this sounds like the Man of your House, then these gifts are fit for him. I love this three piece grill spatula set, which can be customized to your Dad’s Alma matter. Another great idea is a Cornhole or Bocce Ball set.
The Stylish Dad
I know some people think its cliche to get your Dad standard dress wear, but if he’s stylish then you can’t go wrong. Every man needs a few pairs of cuff links, so pick up your Dad a somewhat out of the box pair like these Tor Jewelry Gold Jaws. If you think he can step outside the box a little, try a Brackish Feather Bowtie, handcrafted in South Carolina.
The Drinking Dad
You can not go wrong with alcohol accessories if this is your Dad. A bottle opener from Arthur Court comes in multiple designs to fit your Dad’s personality. I also love small whiskey glasses and an ice tray for the on-the-rocks connoisseur. Don’t forget to pick up a bottle of his favorite liquor or 12 pack of his favorite microbrew to go with these gifts!
Your Dad is going to love anything you get him, whether it’s from the list above or is a simple card and hug. I hope you each have a wonderful day celebrating with the special man in your life. Happy Father’s Day everyone!
What is it about the changing season that makes me want to refresh everything in my life? Seriously, I am always in exercise/detox mode to refresh my body, cleaning mode to declutter from the past few months, shopping mode to stay hip to the latest trends, and most recently, decorating mode.
I’ve always had an eye for decorating, thanks to my mom, but recently I’ve noticed myself frequently picking up charming furniture from second-hand stores, cheap prints at sidewalk shows, and eclectic pieces from new towns I visit. While this is something I truly enjoy, I realize updating or designing your room or home can be a nightmare and overwhelming. Enter Remodo, the latest online gem I have stumbled across.
Remodo does the interior design for those of you who don’t have the time, the creative eye, or all of the above. It’s a room in one box, and is geared toward young women’s taste. You have the option to choose bed size, color, and overall feel, and Remodo does the rest. For those of us who don’t need a fully furnished room, Remodo offers a la carta prices sold separately from your “room in a box.” The a la carte pieces are a funky collection of well-priced prints, coasters, pillows, blankets and more.
Decorating should be fun, not a nuisance. If you’re feeling as though your home or bedroom is in a rut, try picking a up a few pieces or a whole room from Remodo. And don’t forget to always be on the lookout for cool, fun, and unique pieces at your local Farmer’s Market or Flea Market all summer long.
Mother’s Day, Sunday May 10th, is just around the corner. The day we get to celebrate the most important women in our lives and shower them with love, hugs, brunch, and presents. I’ve created the ultimate gift guide to give all your mama’s exactly what they want!
Is your Mom constantly looking for a new read? Grab Anothony Doerr’s “All the Light We Cannot See,” the Pulitzer Prize novel set in WWII, or the newest thriller and soon to be motion picture, “Girl on the Train,” by Paula Hawkins. Buy a copy for yourself while you’re at it, and y’all can sip wine and talk about the stories.
Of course we all know our Moms will love anything we give them. Remember you can never go wrong with flowers and a card, or treating her to dinner! Happy Mother’s Day to all the amazing women we get to call Mom!