Thursday, November 29, 2012

More Favorite Things. I Know! I Love Too Many Things.

Reddi Whip is a must with this hot cocoa. Crushed-up candy canes are optional. {But I highly recommend. }

#1: My favorite hot chocolate. It's my third winter of having this as a staple in our house. And it's so simple! Yet amazing because it's Martha Stewart's recipe so, you's legit. 

Makes 5 3/4 cups dry mix or 92 eight-ounce servings
3 1/2 cups sugar
2 1/4 cups cocoa
1 tablespoon table salt
Whole milk for serving {Trust me, you must you whole milk. This is no time to skimp.}

In a large bowl, combine sugar, cocoa, and salt, and whisk to combine well. Store the mixture in an airtight container. For individual servings, pour 1 cup whole milk into a microwave-safe mug, and microwave on high just until hot. Add 2 tablespoons of cocoa mix, and stir to dissolve. For a larger batch of cocoa, warm the milk in a saucepan set over medium-low heat, taking care not to let the milk boil; as it warms, stir in 2 tablespoons of mix for each cup of milk.

#2: This cupcake recipe with this frosting. They're called "Wedding Cake Cupcakes" and "Wedding Cake Buttercream." You're welcome. Best cupcakes and frosting I've ever made and super easy. 

A picture of the amateur ones I made. Recipe Girl's are much lovelier.

I made them for my 9-year-old's birthday a few weeks ago and I'm making them again for my {sniff-sniff} FIVE-year-old. 

Which brings me to Favorite Thing #3: this guy.

Yes, the baby of the family will be five tomorrow. I'm not coping well. I feel like I just gave birth to him and soon he'll be leaving for college. I have a hard time with birthdays. It's wrong and weird and I need to get it together. 

But honestly, I just love him at this age. He wears cowboy boots every single day, rain or shine, summer or winter. He usually wears a cowboy hat to complete the ensemble. When we try to coerce him into sneakers, he tells us they look weird and that people will laugh at him. So he wears what is essentially a costume instead. Makes total sense.

Also? Collared shirts. He refuses any shirt with a crew neck or any pants that do not have a button or zipper. It's the quirkiest thing. He's been this way for months. It's like he's a 50-year-old trapped in a 5-year-old's body. 

#4: The fact that "ombre" hair is in. I haven't had my poor hair cut or colored since May so if people stare too long at my grown-out roots and lighter ends, I just tell them I'm rockin' the latest trend. And that my version of the trend has a bit of gray mixed in.  

Um, not me. Just in case you were confused. {If only.}

#5: Puffer vests. I bought my first one this year when Old Navy had their 50%-off-outerwear sale and I want to wear it every day. It covers a multitude of sins, is super cozy, and looks good with jeans or running pants. {Or pajamas when you are too lazy to put on real clothes in order to take your kids to school.}  

#6: Cinnamon Pinecones. You know those cinnamon brooms that grocery stores sell this time of year? I love them. But I've never bought one because a.) they look witchy and b.) where in the world do you hang a decorative broom?

Enter the cinnamon pinecones that I bought at Wal-Mart this morning for $3.97. 

My great room smells like a cinnamon-spice wonderland. {I may or may not have licked one.}

#7: Santa Snow. Also an impulse buy at Wal-Mart. {Do not go shopping first thing in the morning when you are somewhat rested, caffeinated, and ripe with the holiday spirit.} It is not to be confused with flocking spray so you can't use it winterize branches, but you can spray a bit indoors and it cleans right up. For $1.50 a can, you can "let it snow" wherever you like. 

It's a Christmas miracle. 

{I'm thinking it may snow on the kitchen table tomorrow for a certain 5-year-old's birthday.}

#8: Branches & Spray Paint: I've been clipping bare branches and spray-painting them white in an attempt at creating some free Christmasy ambience. We'll see how it all comes together. I brought some of them inside before they were completely dry and it smells a bit spray-painty in here. 

Good thing I've got those pinecones. 


Your turn. Any favorite things {holiday or otherwise?}


Linked up with Grace at Home {a weekly link-up event at Imparting Grace}



  1. Laughing. Laughing. Agreeing. Laughing. Agreeing. Agreeing. Laughing . . . and on and on it goes!!! Funny how all of these favorites of yours are favorites of your mom's as well. Makes me happy . . . which is my favorite thing to be.


  2. I love my puffer vest. Mine is comfy and warm and, sadly smells like dog treats because I load my pockets with them when I walk the dog, whom I'm training to not be a spaz.

    My argyle Christmas socks are one of my currents faves, I pulled them out this morning with great delight. I may have hummed a few Christmas songs when I finally found them in the bottom of the drawer :)

    And ombré hair?!?! I love this, because I am unintentionally rocking this trend while out grow out to my natural (grey!) color. Thanks for the validation!

  3. this post inspired me to make hot chocolate when we read tonight -
    Many Blessings!

  4. I'm nodding my head in agreement .... such a fun list! And just like you and Gina I'm also justifying unintentional hombre hair (sprinkled with gray). Thanks for some fun reading!

    Some current favorites here ...
    Pandora's "Indie Christmas" station
    Starbucks Via - Peppermint Mocha flavor (cheaper than Starbucks drive-thru and instant gratification. would be great with reddi whip :-)
    Kid-made snowflake decorations everywhere in the house (inexpensive, easy, fun for the littles, and cool in a Pinterest-y way) String them above the fireplace in a banner
    Candles at all times of the day (Frosted Gingerbread Cookie and Evergreen Forest candles ... Wal-Mart, baby)
    One Thousand Gifts (the book) by Ann Voskamp - (delicious fireside reading. like poetry. inspiring. and best digested in small bites. love.)

  5. I am totally digging the Holiday Blend of essential oil from DoTERRA!! It's fabulous! I wish I could give all my friends one with a diffuser for Christmas! Saw a coffee mug today that had YOU written all over it. I loved that! Having my mother in law decorate my house during Thanksgiving...unspeakable love. My sisters chicken pie recipe? To die for and so simple!! Have to post it later. And you!!!!


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