Thanks for joining me for another Nine Favorite Things post.
Happy August everyone! How are we all feeling? I know things are busy this month. Many of us are out camping, road-tripping, and doing our best to enjoy this very odd (but very nice) summer. My family is currently spending some time at my brother Red’s house Lake Tahoe. Soaking up some sunshine, enjoying lazy days at the beach, biking, hiking, and floating the river. I’m told they’ve also been cooking up a whole lot of steaks on the grill. Followed up with a healthy side of chocolate birthday cake (for cousin Maggie and Red’s GF Hailey).
So what are you all up to this month? Any fun plans? Birthdays? Shopping for cozy fall pieces via the Nordstrom Anniversary sale? Because you know, it’s looking like we’re all going to be spending a lot of (cozy) fall days closer to home. Most likely in our hoodies with a mug in hand…ok, and maybe a cozy blanket too. Sorry, I went there. I know none of us are ready to talk fall just yet, but you all know that fall is my favorite season. And I think we’re all getting the feeling that fall 2020 is going to be very, very cozy. Which is kind of ok with me, I love a cozy fall.
Anyway, we do have a birthday this month, and it’s a big one. Asher is turning twelve on August 30th. I’m shedding tears even thinking about this. How is that sweet little girl almost a teenager? Wishing she could stay eleven another year longer.
Other than that, I’m looking forward to working on upcoming projects (we have three very exciting ones in the works). Creating new late summer recipes, and enjoying one of the best months of the year around here. August is always so beautiful (see photos below!).
Question: what are you guys looking forward to this month?
Coming up this week on HBH, we have so many new and delicious late summer recipes to share. I’m thinking I’d like to start the week off with a fun new vegetarian recipe that highlights summer produce (and is one of my “better than takeout” style recipes). On Tuesday we have a delicious summer berry dessert (with an extra special touch). Then an easy, summery appetizer that’s going to be great for upcoming game nights. And a summer Sunday dinner the whole family will love…with a tomato basil theme. And for Friday, well…I haven’t got a clue. But I’ve yet to highlight those summer peaches, so thinking something sweet and peachy. Taking any and all suggestions. Please do share!
Question: what recipes are you guys hoping to see this month? As always, I would love to hear your suggestions!
If you’re catching up on blog posts from the week, be sure to sign up for our daily newsletters. They’ll help you to stay up to date with everything that’s happening here, as well as fun content you’ll only get via email. If you’re meal planning today, don’t forget to check out my menu below (it’s # 9 on the favorite’s list). You can grab the full grocery list for this week’s menu in our special Sunday newsletter.
1. Summer Photos.
I always share so many photos on Instagram, but never get a chance to share them with you all here. So I thought it would be fun to highlight a few of my favorite summer photos that I’ve recently shared. Instagram has really become the space where I’m able to easily connect with so many of you, share how-to videos, behind the scenes details, and so much more! It’s so much fun for me!
Here are some of my favorite photos from the past week.
(dad planting me pansies and violas)
(my summer skincare, Vintners Daughter)
2. The most popular recipes of July.
Yeah, wow. This recipe. I’ve never seen a recipe take off quite like this one, but I’m thrilled you all love this easy Thai chicken so much. It’s my favorite too! I think a lot of the success of this recipe came from Shay Mitchell sharing it on her Instagram. It’s easy, almost no-cook, and just so good. It’s all about that sweet and spicy Thai chili sauce, crispy chicken, and fresh basil. Oh, and of course…those cashews. Just add coconut rice and you’ve got all (very good) things in one dish.
Yessss. Love this pizza. So happy it’s been so popular, as I was really excited to share this recipe! It’s kind of like something you might order from your favorite pizzeria, but with a summer twist. And oh my gosh, IT IS GOOD. Burst cherry tomato sauce, three kinds of cheese (cause extra cheesy is best), all the pepperoni. Plus a little “house herb garlic pizza seasoning” (which makes the pizza)…so good.
I also have to mention:
I never expect these round-ups to be very popular, but yet you guys always seem to love them. Should I be doing more of these? Anything you’d like to see specifically?
3. Favorite Kitchen Finds from Crate and Barrel…
4. Favorite question of the week…
q: What is your tip for coming up with recipes? What is your favorite baking/cooking tool?
a: For recipes: think outside the box a bit. Ask your friends and family what they’re in the mood for, or what dishes they’ve recently had that they loved. For me, I find a lot of inspiration in the seasons, the weather, and literally anything that’s around me. I can see a pretty flower and the colors inspire a new recipe. Just be open to trying new things and don’t be afraid of messing it up. It’s only food. You can try again!!
Favorite tool: right now I’m loving my cookie scoop and using it for everything. It’s so convenient. That and my food processor!
5. latest recipe videos.
Thai Basil Sesame Cashew Chicken with Coconut Rice…with chili honey-lime cashews, which are addicting.
One Pot Lemon Basil, Corn, and Ricotta Pasta…my go-to summer dinner. It’s always a favorite.
And on Instagram Stories…
5 Minute Garlic Butter Ramen Noodles…summer comfort food in a bowl.
Simple Strawberry Chamomile Cheesecake…for your summertime baking.
One Skillet Creamy Chicken Lazone…creamy and a touch spicy. Delicious.
Everything Cheddar Tomato Bacon Grilled Cheese…one word. GOOD.
Creamy Vegan Chocolate Fudge Pops…dipped, dunked, and coated in “magic shell”.
6. August Goal? Helping to donate 1,000 meals.
One of the things I love most that my mom has always made an effort to do…she gives back whenever possible. Growing up, she really instilled that quality in myself and my brothers too. We’ve spent Christmases creating care packages for struggling families, sent gifts overseas, and donated to charities whenever possible. And until we got super crazy here at HBH, my mom made weekly deliveries for Meals-on-Wheels, or Mountain Meals here. Oh, and she’s an avid Amazon Smile customer, which donates a percentage of your order to the charity of your choice.
Today I’m so excited to partner with We Hero, a non-profit working to develop programs that make giving and volunteering powerful and effortless for companies and small businesses like HBH! Their mission is to empower 10 million people with the tools to give easily and impact-fully. When I first learned about WeHero I was so excited to partner with them to help supper Feeding America this August.
Unfortunately, due to all that’s happened over the past months, there’s an increased population of people in the US who are now struggling for food. The WeHero Browser Extension allows our HBH family to come together to help support all those struggling right now. It’s a great way to give back to worthwhile non-profits while simply doing what you normally do, browsing the web. As you open new tabs, the extension transforms your page to show beautiful pictures with a small ad at the bottom. WeHero takes this ad revenue and donates it to the nonprofits you select. Just by browsing the web, you can feed the hungry, plant trees, clean the ocean, and many more! In one month of browsing, you can provide over 10 meals for those in need!
I’d love for you to join the HBH team here. What do you guys think? Can we donate 1,000 meals over the next month? I think we all should try to reach this goal!
7. favorite links i’m loving…
Reese Witherspoon’s Backyard Hack…easy garden beds (we do this too!).
Why We Chose Raised Garden Beds…more details raised garden beds like the ones we use.
How your gut microbiome affects your brain…so informative (your gut affects much more than you think).
How I Finally Improved My Gut Health…to further your knowledge on gut health.
These 100-Year-Old Doors Make All Other Room Dividers Pale in Comparison…so pretty, I’d love these.
Daphne Oz is Redefining Modern Motherhood…such a good Sunday read with so many takeaways.
Unpacking Taylor Swift’s New Song About Her Rhode Island Mansion…Swifties, let’s hear your thoughts.
Inside Supermodel Kendall Jenner’s Tranquil Los Angeles Home…much more serene than I would have expected.
Charming Greenwich Village Townhouse…so cute, and well, charming.
The Invisible House in Joshua Tree…not really for me, but still cool.
From Spooky Garlands to Gothic Candelabras, Target’s Halloween Collection is Here… officially excited.
18 Shows to Watch If You’re a Sucker for a Love Story…Gossip Girl.
Getting Ready with Mandana Dayani…to help the nation get out and vote.
What to Stream If You Feel Like You’ve Watched Everything…what’s on your list?
Would You Sacrifice a Big Bedroom for a Dream Kitchen…yup, I sure would.
A Digital Detox to Boost Productivity While WFH…so many valuable takeaways from this.
7 Little Things You Can Do for a Better Workout…if you’re looking to up your routine.
14 Things to Do If You Get Dumped…that don’t include texting your ex.
Budget-Friendly Tiles Laid the Groundwork for This Outdoor Space…and it is beautiful.
Summer Sauces Are the Antidote to Vegetable Fatigue…these all sound delicious.
5 Yoga Videos to Try at Home, Even If You’re a Total Beginner…this is for me.
6 Models on Ableism, Visibility, and Personal Style…an inspiring Sunday Read.
On the Farm with Primally Pure Bethany Mcdaniel…loved reading about this family farm and skincare line.
8. Summer Blues…
Also…just some really cute summer hats…
9. this week’s dinners…
Sunday Dessert: Creamy Vegan Chocolate Fudge Pops
Finally, check out all the past Nine Favorite Things posts here.