My Favorite Hot Chocolate Recipes

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As you probably know by now, I have a huuuge sweet tooth, and hot chocolate has been my favorite hot drink since I had my first sip around age 5. I will fully admit I look forward to winter mainly because it’s the one time of year when it’s socially appropriate for adults to drink hot chocolate on a regular basis. There’s nothing quite like curling up on the couch under a fluffy blanket with a great book and a big, steamy hot mug of cocoa.

Now there are some people who are totally satisfied with a packet of Swiss Miss and some hot milk or water. I am not one of them. There are also people who have their one hot chocolate recipe they swear by and refuse to deviate from. I am not one of those people either. In fact, every winter I spend hours scrolling through Pinterest finding new hot chocolate recipes to try. While I still love traditional cocoa, there are a few non-traditional renditions I’ve tried that are truly out of this world, so I thought I’d share them with you!

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The Perfect Gift: Tieks by Gavrieli

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A little over a year ago, on my 35th birthday, my wonderful mom bought me a pair of Tieks by Gavrieli. If you haven’t heard of Tieks (which you probably have unless you live under a rock), they’re the Italian leather foldable ballet flats with bright blue soles, and they’re supposedly the most versatile ballet flats in the world. After a year of wearing Tieks, I feel like I can finally give my honest opinion of the famous blue-bottomed flats.

I started seeing Tieks pop up on my social media a couple years ago, but whenever I thought about buying them I would convince myself I didn’t need another pair of ballet flats to add to my almost outrageously large collection. Yes, I have a little bit of a shoe addiction, and that’s especially true when it comes to flats. I’ve tried so many different designer brands I’ve lost count, always in search for something both comfortable and chic. My mom will be the first person to call me out and remind me that I do NOT need more shoes. So when she presented me with box that contained my Matte Black pair, I was both excited and shocked! Apparently after years of hearing me complain about flats that killed my feet she went on a mission to find me the perfect pair, and Tieks were her answer.

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Frozen Chocolate Garnishes

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This is a big year for me, because it’s the first year I’ll be hosting my family at my house for Thanksgiving. We’ve always done it at my parents’ place, but I decided we should shake things up a bit, and surprisingly my family agreed!

We have a tradition in my family of doing super decadent hot drinks on Thanksgiving. Whether it’s rich hot cocoa or cinnamon-packed hot apple cider, we always top them off with a mountain of whipped cream. As a kid this was my favorite part of Thanksgiving, other than my mom’s homemade pumpkin pie of course. Now my favorite part of Thanksgiving is just getting to spend time with my family, but we’ve managed to keep the tradition going all these years!

Since I’m hosting, I feel like I need to do something extra special, so I’ve been playing around with making frozen chocolate garnishes for our drinks. I’ve tried this a few times now, and my most recent attempt wasn’t a total fail, so I thought I’d share.Read More »

FabFitFun Fall Box Review

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My first Fab Fit Fun box came and I am SO excited to share it with you! If you’ve never heard of Fab Fit Fun, it’s a subscription service that sends you a seasonal box full of fabulous fashion, beauty, health, and fitness goodies. It costs $49.99 every 3 months (with free shipping), but the total retail value of the box usually ends up at over $200—that’s the big selling point. If you sign up for a year subscription ($180) you can also save $5 a box, but since I wasn’t sure how I would like it, I decided to go with the seasonal plan.

Fall happens to be my favorite season (I’m a sucker for anything pumpkin flavored), so it worked out perfectly that I got the Fall 2016 box as my first! From the website I gather that the boxes are usually colored when you get them, but this one is a little different. More on that in a sec. Also completely coincidentally, the box arrived exactly a week before my birthday—I was pretty pumped for a bunch of early birthday gifts, even if I had gotten them for myself 😉

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Bottega Louie = Macaron Heaven

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Every couple months I make a trip out to LA to see my sister. She went to UCLA for college and loved the city so much she never left. I’ve lost count of the number of times she’s tried to convince me to move down there. While I’d love to be closer to my sister I just know the big city life isn’t for me. I’ve always felt most at home in small, quiet places like Carmel, with lots of nature around me. With that being said, LA less than a 6 hour drive from me, and I absolutely love visiting the city.

A while back my sister and I made a pact that every time I came down she would take me to at least 3 new places. My most recent trip was just a couple weeks ago, and we visited my version of heaven—Bottega Louie.

Bottega Louie is a restaurant, café, and patisserie (bakery) in downtown Los Angeles, or as everyone in LA refers to it, DTLA. We stopped by to check out their famous macarons before I headed back to Carmel, and they did not disappoint!

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Lemon Love

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This summer I’ve been gravitating towards all things lemon—I’m talking color, shape, print, everything. I’ve been going a little overboard with pinning lemon-inspired things, so I thought I’d make a little lemon love outfit board and share it with you! White and denim with lemon accents like that adorable lemon pendant and the kate spade purse make for a perfect summer look. Oh and isn’t that lemon print dress just gorgeous?!

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