Thanks for joining me for another Nine Favorite Things.
This month always flies by, but with all the cold temperatures and snowy weather we saw this past month, it feels exciting to be entering into March. Spring is slowly coming, daylight savings time begins in just two weeks, and we have a lot of exciting things in the works for spring, summer, and into the fall that I’m feeling grateful to be working on.
Speaking of gratitude, I don’t keep a gratitude journal, but I listened to something this week that really resonated with me. It’s making me think I should consider starting each morning with a journal prompt. I’ve never journaled a thing in my life and it’s definitely not my personality to do so, but who knows, maybe I would love it. What I listened to was basically about starting each day with the outlook of “I am grateful to be doing this today”. It can turn your overwhelming to-do list into something positive and exciting instead of daunting.
I’m doing a horrible job of explaining it, but my mom has always said, it’s really all about your mindset and how you look at every situation. It’s been one of the hardest weeks, so I have really been keeping that in mind.
Question: Do any of you keep a gratitude journal? It’s never something I considered doing, but I’m starting to wonder if it might be time to rethink.
Some things that have brightened my week? Fresh flowers from Whole Foods (found the prettiest roses and I’m not usually a rose person, but these are so unique). Lighting my favorite candles (I’ve literally been stocking up on candles as if they’re all going to all sell-out or something). And a couple of nighttime phone calls with my mom. What is it about calls with mom? I feel like even just hearing their voice suddenly makes everything ten times better. Does anyone else feel the same? No matter how old I get, a call with my mom always helps.
And then, little miss Asher! She’s such a bright spot in my world. Even on long tiring days, getting to chat with her always brings so much light and happiness. She’s been on “winter break” this week, which means she’s been insanely bored. She’s been on the hunt for a fun wedding dress for my cousin’s wedding all week and she finally found one. It is adorable, but of course, only a dress that Asher could pull off. Now that she has her dress figured out, her new mission is to find my dress…we shall see what she comes up with! To be determined…
Also, a few weeks ago I recorded a podcast with the Brit and Co founder, Brit Morin. If you’d like, you can listen to the full episode here. I had such a nice time talking with Brit and she asked some really great questions! This week I taped another fun podcast with Sezan and her husband Stevie for their podcast The Goodlife. These two are such a breath of fresh air and so fun. I had a great time chatting with them and will share it with you when the podcast episode airs!
Ok, and in a random update, it’s been almost exactly a year since my last hair cut and the ends of my strands have officially reached their driest state. I’m desperately craving a haircut, the question is, what do I do? I’m thinking longer layers to add volume. But many of you guys have messaged saying a shorter cut would be especially cute on me. I just don’t think I can do it though, I’ve always had long hair! Thoughts?
And lastly, I mentioned this last week, but this past Monday Oslo officially, officially became a Gerard. He’s stuck with us for good now, and we’re all pretty excited about it. He’s the happiest baby there is, and if you follow on Instagram, you got a little taste of his adorable laugh. He makes it hard not to stop whatever you’re doing and just sit and smile back at him.
Coming up this week, we’ll be slowly incorporating more of those lighter spring recipes in…with plenty of color! I don’t have all the recipes for this week set in stone, but there will be a new quick (healthy) meatball dinner (per my brother’s request). A classic fast-food menu item, remade at home (any guesses?). And then once again, Friday is still a bit of a wild card, if you’d like to make suggestions, I’m all ears!
Have a great Sunday guys and enjoy this week’s favorites post!
1. Things I’m Loving, Wanting, and Excited to Try…
watching…I Care A Lot. My cousin recommend this one. Have you seen it? She said it’s crazy, but also so good. It’s a thriller, which I have not seen in such a long time. Thinking this might be my Sunday night movie.
cooking…fresh homemade PITAS! If you follow on Instagram or read my blog post for the turmeric chicken pitas, you know all about the homemade pitas I made. The recipe is from Eden Grinshpan’s cookbook, Eating Out Loud, and ’tis perfection. I’ve never had homemade pita bread pop, but this recipe works like a charm.
loving…Honest Beauty’s Magic Beauty Balm. I just received this moisturizing balm this week. I’ve been using it on my hands for the last few days and am so impressed! My hands are always dry, but this really has been keeping them moisturized and soft throughout the day. And I love that it’s an affordable price point too!
listening to…Jamie Kern Lima on Life with Marianna. When I hit play on this podcast, I wasn’t sure I would be interested. Prior to listening, I didn’t know of Jamie Kern Lima who is the founder of IT Cosmetics. But after listening, I walked away with so many takeaways. I also just genuinely enjoyed the conversation. It was very inspiring and Jamie has a really positive outlook on life.
reading…Believe IT by Jamie Kern Lima. After listening to the above podcast with Jamie, I’m really excited to dive into her book. I got the audio version and plan to listen to it like I do podcasts.
loving…Shani Darden Retinol Reform. Been using this for a few weeks now. I started with once a week, but have moved it up to three times a week and have seen a noticeable difference. Fewer blemishes, fewer dark spots, and my skin is even a little smoother too. Do any of you use Retinol?
thinking about ordering…this Variegated Ficus Tree. I’ve never had a house plant, do I need one? I love the look of this one, but wonder if they die easily?
thinking about ordering…this fun Massage Candle. Basically you light the candle and the natural wax melts into a warm massage oil. When you blow out the flame, you can pour the melted wax over your skin with its pour spout. So curious to see how this works.
2. The Most Popular Recipes of February.
Most popular: Sheet Pan Buffalo Chicken Pizza
I am SO excited you guys love this pizza. It’s my family’s all time favorite pizza and I have to admit, it’s mine too. I wasn’t excited to share this recipe, only because I didn’t think the world really needed another buffalo chicken pizza recipe out there, but obviously I was once again wrong. You guys sure love to throw me a curve ball when it comes to the popular recipes.
Runner-up: 30 Minute Spicy Miso Chicken Katsu Ramen
This is my favorite ramen recipe that I have shared…and my brothers too. They’ve traveled to Japan and said this is honestly just as delicious as the ramen they enjoyed while traveling around from town town. It’s been made by so many of you this month!! Love seeing the photos come through on Instagram.
Also have to mention: Easy Greek Sheet Pan Chicken and Potatoes
Simple, but delicious. This one is a go-to.
Ok. Last one: Homemade Cheesy Gordita Crunch Tacos
3. Everything New From Anthro’s Spring Home Drop…
4. Favorite Questions of the Week.
q How far out do you plan your content?
a: Usually not that far at all. If I plan too far out, I end up wanting to switch everything up because I’m constantly changing my mind. If something sounds good and I’m excited, I’ll test it, get the recipe right, and then share it almost immediately. I really really wish I was more planned out. But I find my recipes are more creative when they’re spur of the moment.
q: Did you enjoy school?
a: No I actually hated school and had a ton of anxiety growing up. It was just never my thing. I hated being in a classroom all day long and never felt comfortable at school. When I started high school, I took college courses for high school and college credit. I then graduated from HS early with an Associate’s Degree. After that is when I started HBH.
q: What shoes do you wear while cooking?
a: I just wear Ugg slippers, but I’m thinking about getting the Classic Ultra Mini boot very soon. I got my mom a pair for Christmas and she loves them.
q: What do you use on your hair?
a: Oh man. I honestly do nothing to my hair and it’s been a year since my last cut. I’ve been using Oribe shampoo and conditioner which I love, but I switch it up sometimes too. And I’m excited to try The OUAI hair mask!
Other than that, I do nothing. I let it air dry somewhat, then throw it up in a top knot while it’s still damp. I let it finish drying as I sleep (which is probably bad for my hair). In the morning I have soft curls, but they last .2 seconds. My hair doesn’t hold any kind of curl. And I wash it 3-4 times a week sometimes more.
q: Where would you love to travel to?
a: Italy and Thailand for sure! Italian and Thai cuisines are my 2 favorites and I would love to learn more about their cultures, especially through food. Oh but, I love Indian cuisine too! So I’m not sure. Sorry, I can’t pick just one favorite!
q: Do you and Asher ever fight?
a: We’re sisters so I guess we have once or twice been annoyed with each other, but we’re 15 years apart, the fights just are not really a thing. She’s my best friend! Love that little girl
5. Favorite Photo of the Week…
I just can’t get over his little smile. He’s too cute.
6. Dream Destinations…Because Spring Break Is Coming.
Ok. Ok. So, I am just going to rattle off some of my top bucket list destinations, because I get this question all the time on Instagram. I also asked my cousin, because she loves to travel…and she gave me some new ideas too!
Within the US…
– McCall, Idaho – my brothers are there right now and it looks like such a cute little ski town
– Aspen, Colorado – and staying at The Little Nell…of course.
– Palm Beach, Florida – forever one of my favorite vacation spots.
– Maui, Hawaii – I’ve never been to Hawaii.
– Charleston, South Carolina – especially in the spring. It looks so beautiful
– Nashville, Tennessee – I’ve only been once, but would love to go back soon!
– Canandaigua, New York – this cute hotel, The Lake House looks so amazing and unique. Would love to stay here someday.