Thanks for joining me for another Nine Favorite Things post.
Welcome to the very last day of January! I can’t say that I am particularly excited to say goodbye to yet another month. But then I am so excited for the months ahead. It was a good first month of the year, but it also came with its own set of struggles. Every day I pull open Instagram and I immediately see what appears to be everyone’s perfect ways of living, especially this past month. I’m just going to say it point blank, it can sometimes be annoying. I found myself unfollowing people who were only showing solely the “pretty things” in life.
January is supposed to be all about keeping up with those New Year’s resolutions, organizing every last corner of your house, eating all your greens, and working out daily. There is so much pressure to be your “perfect” self in January. But I’m going to be the first to tell you, my January wasn’t perfect, and I wasn’t able to do ALL the things I’d hoped. Yes, my pantry still could use some serious organization after the holidays. I have a huge deadline looming. And at the moment, I’m not feeling the most confident. We can all talk the talk about being confident, practicing self-care, and doing all the “right” things.
The truth is, I have good and bad days, good and bad weeks, and I’m nowhere near perfect. I definitely don’t sleep nearly enough. I easily fall into the comparison trap. And some days I could probably manage my time much better. But guys, I’m only human, and not every day can be perfect and super productive. I mean, right?
It’s OK to not be on your game 24/7, and it’s OK to just have an off day. One of my favorite things my dad is always saying to me is, “if we didn’t have bad days, we wouldn’t appreciate the good”. This is something he’s been telling me for years. Every bad day I have, I always think back to his words. They make me appreciate those difficult days. Because without them, I wouldn’t love my good days as much as I do.
This is probably more of a pep talk for myself, but I guess my point is that if you’ve had a hard week, or you find that you’re comparing yourself to others on social, or you’re feeling like you’re just not good enough, remember that what you see on the screen is someone’s highlight reel. It’s not always their everyday reality. My biggest tip is to unfollow anyone who’s not serving you in a positive way. Instead, find a few people that really inspire you. And then definitely limit the time on social. I always find it so helpful to only open up my phone once or twice a day, and I almost never scroll through IG. I use it more as a tool to connect with you guys.
And that’s my little end of the month public service announcement. Sorry for going on, but I just wanted to put it out there for any of you that might be feeling down on yourself. Just know that I get it too.
Anyway, aside from all of that, this month was overall pretty great! We celebrated my mom’s birthday, got to spend extra time with family after the holidays, and cooked up a lot of delicious, but healthy recipes.
I might be a little overly enthusiastic, but I really feel like the months ahead are going to be good and bring with them brighter days. Literally…anyone else SO thankful for the longer days? The fact that it stays light out till 5 pm here excites me greatly!
In other news, we said goodbye to two of my brothers this week, Kai and Red. They went off to Aspen for X-Games where they had to be in a “bubble” the entire time. I’m writing this before Red has competed, but I’ll update you next week! My family was hoping to be able to go and watch, but there are no spectators allowed, and there were just too many restrictions. So we’ll be watching on the TV like the rest of the winter sports fans out there!
And in other news, Asher had her first day at the middle school this week. They are only going into school two days and doing zoom another two days, but she’s officially entered middle school. I really wish she would just stop growing up. With things the way they are, school looks very, very different, and she’s not loving it. As someone who struggled my entire life with going to school, I feel her pain. Asher is super lucky since both of my parents are able to work from home. Therefore, they are considering allowing her to home school for the remainder of the year. Curious about you guys with kids, are they back in school full-time, part-time?
And lastly, coming up this week I have a mix and match between easy dinners and game day recipes for this Sunday’s Super Bowl.
1. Things i’m loving, wanting, and excited to try…
watching…discovery+. Do you subscribe? They have the new Magnolia network, plus so many other shows. I am doing the free trial and love it so far.
cooking…gumbo. or at least I would like to soon. have you made the gumbo from the HBH Super Simple Cookbook?
loving…our pizza oven. I’ve never used the pizza oven we have in the studio more than I have this year. I’ve been using it to make pizzas, of course. But also lighting it almost every night just for the warmth and the sound of a crackling fire. It’s my favorite thing right now.
reading…Joanna Gaines Takes AD Inside Her TV Kitchen. A short Sunday read, but I just love her stove, island, and all those windows.
listening to…the skinny confidential him and her podcast. Yes, the same podcast as last week, but a new episode. If you need to hear something inspiring and refreshing, listen to this episode, How To Be Productive In 2021 With An Effective Mindset. So on point.
reading…about the enneagram personality test. I’m going to be honest, I’m not a big believer in personality tests, nor have I ever taken one. BUT so many of you guys have asked me in my Q&A’s what my personality number is. Curious if you’ve taken the test and if so, what your thoughts are? If I take the test, what do you think my personality will come up as?
loving…dry brushing. I don’t do this every night, but when I do my skin always feels so fresh and clean.
ordered…flowers. I just ordered a few bouquets and can’t wait for everyone to get them early this week. I LOVE randomly gifting flowers to colleagues, friends, and family.
ordered….face towels. I’ve gotten into the habit of washing my face and removing all my makeup as soon as I walk in the door every night. It feels so good to have clean skin, and almost “wash away” the day. Currently, I just use an everyday washcloth, but I’ve been feeling like I’m almost hurting my skin with my un-gentle towel. I might just be a sucker for pretty things, but I’m excited to get these! I’ll let you know if they are worth it!
loving…these Slip Face Mask. The silk material helps prevent breakouts and I love how soft it feels on my skin.
watched…this video on the benefits of transcendental meditation. I am so interested in learning more on this. Not sure I can do it, but I want to give it a try.
drinking…Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides Powder. I always put either this or the Be Well By Kelly Protein Powder in my coffee every morning. The Be Well By Kelly powder is my favorite and even makes the coffee a little creamy on top. I always get unflavored.
inspired by…the Chanel Spring 2021 Show. The ending of the show really got me. It was beautiful, but I’m a sucker for a classic white horse and stunning flowers.
dreaming…of visiting The Breakers. My grandparents used to spend a lot of time in the West Palm Beach area. My grandma and I would spend a day at The Breakers every summer. Dying to go back. It’s one of my favorite vacation spots and brings back the best memories.
question: where are dreaming of traveling to next?
2. The most popular recipes of January.
Most popular: Healthier Homemade Crunchwrap Supreme
Once again, you guys surprised me. Never would have thought this would be so popular, but wow…we’re all really loving the crunchwrap!
My personal favorite! I love this one. So much color and flavor!
Also have to mention: 5 Minute Chocolate Chunk Banana Bread Mug Cake
SO excited you guys love this recipe! I wasn’t sure if I should share it because of how simple it is, but I’m so happy I did!!
Ok. Last one: Folded Crispy Buffalo Chicken Wraps
3. Cozy Winter Home…
4. Favorite questions of the week.
q: What are your favorite brands of jeans?
a: I love RE/DONE, Frame, and Slvrlake Denim. And I don’t have them yet, but I’ve got a pair of Agolde sitting in my cart. Anyone else leave their favorite pieces sitting in shopping carts just waiting to buy them until it’s too late and then they’re sold out?? Cause that’s me.
q: Would you ever want to go back to fashion design school?
a: No! I love what I’m doing now more than anything, and we’ve got so many exciting things in the works!! I’m genuinely just so excited to keep growing HBH and doing new things! I’ll always love fashion, but the good news is that I can still have fun with that pretty much every single day 😉
q: What are the best kitchen gifts to give for someone who loves to cook?
a: If they don’t have one, a Staub skillet is a must in any kitchen!! If you’re looking to spoil them, a stand mixer never ever disappoints. For something at a lower price point, an online cooking class goes a long way and there are so many great ones being offered right now.
q: How do you stay so slim cooking all that delicious food?
a: I think it’s super important to remember that everyone’s bodies are different. We’ve all got different genes, so you shouldn’t compare one person to another, you know? That said, I hike every day, then work in the kitchen all day long, so I’m pretty active most of the time. And also, I’m not shoving cookies in my face 24/7 just a taste here and there! Everything in moderation. I try to stick to normal meals.
q: How did you master food photography?
a: If you ask me, I still have not mastered food photography. But with years and years of shooting food at least 5 days a week, I slowly got better. Over time I learned how to shoot certain foods, honed in on my style, and how to best use the natural light (I don’t use any form of lighting, just daylight). Everything gets better/easier with practice, so just keep working at it and you’ll improve!
Oh, and Google anything you don’t know, take an online class, or in my case, ask your brother everything because he’s usually got the answers. Thanks for putting up with me Malachi!
Also, I still have days when I don’t like what I have photographed. I think you guys would be really surprised just how often I reshoot recipes before you even see them. Food is a changing subject, most of the time it gets uglier and uglier as it sits, so it’s a hard subject to work with daily!
5. Where I’m Getting Design Inspiration…
I’ve been following Colin King for a while, but when I came across the above photo, I stumbled down the rabbit hole of all his work. So inspired by the beautiful spaces he has styled.
(all photos via Colin King)
6. A Few Favorite Skincare and Beauty Products.
Augustinus Bader Cleansing Balm – I throw this on my face as soon as I get home to wipe away any makeup. It’s super soothing and gentle.
iS Clinical Cleansing Complex – once my skin is makeup-free, I’ll cleanse with this face wash. It’s a tried and true favorite that I’ve used for well over a year now. I love it.
Biossance Squalane + Elderberry Jelly Cleanser – I like to rotate my cleansers every few days. This is another favorite that is a little more on the affordable side, but just effective.
Mutha Face Oil – another splurge, but I like to use this as the last part of my routine. It’s meant to lock in moisture.
Augustinus Bader Hand Cream – my hands are so dry, but this is helping! I put it on at night before bed to lock in moisture.
Ilia Super Serum Skin Tint – I mix this with this Kosas Tinted Face oil, but also love both on their own. This give a nice matte finish.
Kosas Tinted Face Oil – provides the perfect dewy base and feels good all day long on my skin.
Kosas 10-Second Liquid Eyeshadow – obsessed with this. It creates the perfect, subtle eyelid.
Kosas The Big Clean Mascara – for perfect lashes, try this. I love it!
Charlotte Tilbury Legendary Brows Eyebrow Gel – brows are my pet peeve. I love a thick brow, so excited to try this. I just got it this week, but I’m loving it.
Kosas Moisturizing Baked Bronzer – makes me look alive…honestly, I’m pasty otherwise.
Kosas Brightening Concealer – covers any blemishes perfectly.
Question: What are your favorite skincare and beauty products? Anything I should try?
7. A few favorite links I am loving…
Kate Hudson’s Latest Product Launch is the Perfect Valentine’s Day Gift…such a cute collab.
A Daily Stretching Routine That’ll Make You More Flexible in 6 Weeks…Going to try and follow this for the week! Every night, 10 minutes.
The Best Valentine’s Day Flowers (That You Can Order Online)…Valentine or no Valentine, order someone you love some v-day flowers.
The Best Food Gifts for Every Type of Valentine…are you team chocolate or team wine?
How to Have a Romantic Valentine’s Day Meal at Home…such pretty v-day inspiration.
17 Women in Wellness Show You the Inside of Their Fridge…if you love sneaking a peek inside someone else’s fridge, read this.
Unlock the Hidden Potential Underneath Your Stairs…love these “Harry Potter” staircase closet ideas.
Vanessa Carlton’s Tale of Two Bathrooms…I’m obsessed with pretty bathrooms right now.
5 Ideas to Bookmark Before You Redo Your Bathroom…again with the bathrooms. I just want to create the most relaxing space.
8 Interior Designers Share the #1 Design Book They Always Reference…these would all make great coffee table books.
A Foolproof Guide to the Best Online Consignment Stores…love vintage shopping online.
These Are The Top Kitchen Trends For 2021…very into the green cabinets.
A South Africa Bungalow…wow, so unique. I love all the light and the pool that wraps around the house.
19 Slow Cooker And Instant Pot Soups That Basically Cook Themselves…love a good slow cooker dinner.
Owners of #1 Hotel in the Country Have a New Must-Visit Resort…please, please, please, can I go here soon.
8. Cozy, Casual Winter Sweaters and Hoodies…
9. this week’s dinners…
Check out all the past Nine Favorite Things posts here.
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