Nine Favorite Things
One week into November and it already feels like the holidays are in full swing! I said this last week, but for whatever reason, I feel like I’m already behind. And it’s only the first weekend of November! The holidays seem like they’re a bigger deal than ever this year. I think it’s because we all just want to get back to the way the holidays used to be. A time for parties, being with loved ones, and celebrating the season together.
Hopefully, this year will be amazing. But man it feels like time is just flying by, so much to do and not enough of it! Anyone feeling that holiday rush a little earlier this year?
What I will say is that between all the parties and gift giving, it’s my goal this year to really remember to stop for .2 seconds and actually enjoy the season I love most. My mom reminds me of this year after year and I’ve really yet to listen. So maybe this is the year?
Either way, I’m excited. And I’m excited to find the perfect gifts, especially for my mom and Asher. There really isn’t much I love more than watching someone open a gift they LOVE. It’s so much fun!
Speaking of gifts, we launched our first ever gift guides this week! Everyone is lending a hand with these guides and working to make them the best they can be. Pulling products has been so much fun! Check out our hostess guide and expect more very soon!
Let’s see, what else! I shared our 2021 Thanksgiving menu this week! So many of you had asked last year if I could work to get this out the first week of November. So I made an effort to do just that! It was a lot of fun to shoot this year’s menu. I even did a little tablescape too.
In family news, Asher is finally back in Colorado! My oldest brother Creighton flew her home earlier this week. Man, I really missed that girl! She’s been making her way down to the studio towards the end of the day and going through all my Christmas purchases for upcoming posts (sharing favorites from what I got below!) and somehow talking me into making her alla vodka…after a full day of cooking. She’s hard to say no to.
And Oslo! Man, I can’t get over this kid and his cuteness. Every time he’s around, he is the biggest distraction. He’s just so cute! And honestly a lot of fun. Always smiling, always happy.
I think that’s all I have update wise! I’m heading to Austin for a quick work trip this week, but then back home and back to working on all things holiday!
Happy Sunday guys! Enjoy this week’s favorite list! Leaving you with the sweetest photo of two of my favorite people!
(beauty gift guide coming soon – favorites from Violet Grey)
1. Things i’m loving, wanting, and excited to try…
loving…Zara textured weave dress. This would be so cute for a holiday party with tall boots.
listening to…How Brittany Xavier Pivoted to TikTok on Life with Marianna.
burning…Diptyque biscuit scented candle. I literally just opened this and oh my gosh, it smells like Christmas. Ordering one for my mom before it sells out. Also, loving the Boy Smells holiday gift set. I just ordered the broken rosary magnum candle.
watching…Shay Mitchell Breaks Down Her 58-Step Beauty Guide, From Face Masks to False Eyelashes on Vogue Beauty Secrets. LOVE a makeup tutorial.
loving…Ganni jacket. Really cute and cozy for winter and I love the length. This Zara puffer and plaid fleece are also cute, and much more affordable.
wanting to try…Canyon Coffee. Really in need of some new beans. These blends sound really great. What are your favorite organic coffee beans?
ordered…The Reformation breslin dress. Festive for the holidays, but I love the detailing in the back. So pretty.
drinking…Spiced Maple Bourbon Fizz
watched…Love Hard on Netflix. I mentioned this last week but it wasn’t out yet. My parents and Asher watched it Friday night and said it was great!
2. My favorite cranberry recipes for November.
3. Everything I’ve order so far for the holidays…
4. Favorite questions of the week.
q: best meal to cook together for date night?
a: homemade ravioli! it’s hands-on, so that’s fun! and then it’s kind of fancy, and of course delicious.
q: what is your proudest accomplishment in HBH?
a: creating such a huge (and seriously loyal) community! it’s crazy!! And then creating a team. this has been so hard to do but we’re making progress!
q: what’s the most time-intensive part of your job?
a: developing, photographing, and filming new recipes
q: what are some of the recipes that your brother wants you to make, but you reject?
a: meatloaf is his biggest request.
q: what hair care products have you been loving?
a: Milbon is so good. shout out to Lisa Satorn for making me try this. It’s my go-to now.
q: share some personal info about you here? I’m a new follower and think you’re great!
a: first, hi!! so glad to have you new guys here! 🙂 I started HBH at 19 and I just turned 28. soo I’ve been doing this a while now! I’ve always been a very creative person and grew up thinking I’d go into fashion. after a short stint in LA at 18 I quickly chickened out of that scene – that’s when I started HBH. I used to style clothes for fun, now I style food…though my love of fashion is still pretty strong!! what I love most is to be able to solve the “dinner problem” for people in a way that feels new, exciting, and pretty! I’m all about pretty food that tastes REALLY good too!
So I’m one of 8 kids, 6 brothers, and 1 little sister. I’m smack in the middle of everyone with 3 brothers above me, 3 brothers below me, and then little sister Asher. I’m not married yet and all the kids on my stories aren’t mine, they’re my siblings. I live in Colorado and we’re currently in the thick of my very favorite season – fall. the holidays are coming and I’m sooo excited!! my mom is c0-owner in HBH and runs a lot of the behind-the-scenes and day-to-day operations. we’re slowly building a small but awesome team!! my favorite things are probably flowers, candles, and anything fall-themed. oh, plus Gilmore Girls and Harry Potter.
q: what’s your favorite thing about yourself?
a: I don’t give up very easily and always try to find a way to just figure it out
q: favorite part of this season of life?
a: growing this online community of friends!!! I LOVE getting to share with you guys every single day. it’s so exciting to be able to call this my job. I can’t wait for more fun things to come!!
5. Thanksgiving tips of the week.
Thanksgiving Tip: 1 think about your menu
A few things to be thinking about when creating your Thanksgiving menu. How much oven space do you have? How many people are you serving? Does anyone have any dietary restrictions? How much time do you have to prep? Will you have help?
If hosting, plan the menu and decide on the number of people. Once you’ve got your headcount, plan the menu. Reach out to your family/guests and see what their favorite dishes are and if they have dietary restrictions. This can help narrow down the menu. Also, let guests bring a dish if they offer! You can always take the dish that stresses you out the most and go with store-bought or delegate that one to a friend or family member. Thanksgiving dinner should be fun, so find easy ways like this to take away the stress. Make what you really like so that you’ll enjoy all of the leftovers. Make what you love most and skip the rest!
Always include at least one vegetarian main course. It’s nice to have a main course that’s just as hearty and exciting as the turkey for any vegetarian eaters.
Depending on how many leftovers you’d like, plan on anywhere from a pound to a pound and a half per person.
Reader tip 1 – don’t stay married to turkey if you/your guest aren’t crazy about it
Yes! I love this! Don’t get me wrong, I love a traditional meal, but I enjoy the sides more! If your guests are open to it, switch it up this year and do something totally different. Try out new recipes and just have a great meal with friends and family.
Thanksgiving Tip: 2 don’t be afraid to take help from the store.
There is so much pressure to do it all on Thanksgiving and honestly, that’s just insane. Make the dishes you love to make and outsource the rest if you can. Nothing wrong with mixing in-store bought and homemade. Pre-shredded brussels sprouts, puff pastry, and pie crust are all good buys. Stores offer so many great options, especially places like Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s.
What’s your favorite store-bought ingredient that saves time?
Reader tip 2 – make a Thanksgiving week schedule from decorating, to cooking, to setting the table.
I love a schedule. It’s honestly so helpful and helps to ease anxiety knowing that you have a realistic plan!
Thanksgiving Tip: 3 test your recipes
If you’re trying new recipes, make sure you test them out before Thanksgiving Day. No one wants to be disappointed on Thanksgiving with a bad batch of mashed potatoes or lumpy gravy. Test your recipes out over the next couple of weeks so they’re perfect for Thanksgiving.
Reader tip: make a playlist in advance if you’re hosting.
A good playlist is so important. It’s something that can easily be made ahead of time, but is often forgotten about until just before guests arrive! Make your playlist now. If you struggle with music (like me), get help from someone who makes an awesome playlist. Tell them the vibe/mood you want and let them put together a list!
Thanksgiving Tip: 4 give everyone a job
Most people want to pitch in and are always asking, “how can I help?”. So give them a job that keeps them out of the kitchen. Then you can finish the meal without everyone looking over your shoulder (this is me every big family dinner). Come up with a few tasks they can do to help that will also save you time. Opening the wine, filling water glasses, lighting candles, etc. It’s always nice to have some things that guests can help with instead of just doing it all yourself. So think ahead on some tasks!
Reader tip: come up with a signature cocktail to drink while cooking, so fun!
I LOVE this, a signature cocktail is so much fun! And my family would be so excited too.
Thanksgiving Tip: 5 invest in a crockpot or countertop oven/toaster
If you’re working with limited oven space, I highly recommend using your crockpot and countertop oven. They can cook mashed potatoes from start to finish, or just keep your dishes warm without taking up any oven space. An instant pot is great too.
Reader tip: Decorate with a table runner that’s also a heating pad. Made by grandma and reversible.
This is genius!!! Now, where can I get a runner that’s a hot pad too? ?
6. Inspiring me, favorite photo + charities to support.
inspiring me – Christmas decor brought to you by Asher
(Asher’s gathering inspo for her bedroom and I thought her pins were so cute)
(so cute and festive – lady decluttered)
(love the whimsical tree – nesting with grace)
(adorable for younger kids – pottery barn)
(the coziest wintery setup – better decorating bible)
favorite photo of the week – mom and Oslo
charity to support
Last week we announced that we would be highlighting a new charity each Sunday leading up to Christmas. Meagan commented about her favorite charity (she actually works there!) – Providence House in Shreveport, LA.
Meagan’s comment stated, “We’re a homeless shelter for families with children. We help them become self-sufficient through workforce development and education. It’s extremely rewarding and heartwarming to see these families grow, graduate, and become the best versions of themselves. People helping people – that’s what it’s all about.
We love that this organization empowers people by giving them the tools they need to be successful and independent. There is no greater gift you can give than helping someone realize their own value, strengths, and ability to care for themselves and their family.
You can donate to Providence House here.
7. Favorite links i’m loving…
here.…even more photos
…magical is the perfect word, so unique.
7 Workout Benefits That Are More Important Than How Many Calories You Burned…workout for your health, not calories burned.
…this is a huge favorite.
…it’s true, it’s an Airbnb for $20 a night.
61 Days of Festive Activities to Get You to the End of the Year…all the festive things to help you get into the holiday spirit.
Artifact Uprising for our holiday cards.…we’re using
9 Places to Sell Your Clothing for Cash…without leaving your house.
…if you’re looking for inspiration.
deals to shop this week.…the
10 Beauty Tricks to Look Good in Photos…tips for all the upcoming holiday photos.
…love this idea.
8. Holiday looks from Reformation.
9. This week’s dinners + weekend eats…
Tuesday:(breakfast for dinner)
Saturday: Spiced Maple Bourbon Fizz