Sunday, December 28, 2014

My 2 Favorite Trends for New Years Eve Fashion!

Okay ladies, choosing our New Years Eve attire is almost as important as choosing how we will say "Goodbye" to 2014 and "Hello" to 2015...or at least it is for us fashionistas! 

Below are two trends that I am kind of obsessing over at the moment; Tulle Skirts and Sequined Pants! Both looks are perfect for celebrating, partying and looking festive for whatever your New Years Eve celebration entails. Also you can dress up or down either look, to fit your style, which is another reason I love them both. Let's take a look at a couple of ways to style these two fabulous looks! 

Tulle Skirts

Get the look:

Sequined Pants

Get the Look:

H&M and These!

It's been real 2014! Cheers and Happy New Years, everyone!



Monday, December 8, 2014

Recipe for Mulled Wine...a Winter Must Have!

I just recently discovered my love for mulled wine. However, I am not surprised by this new found love because I also love apple cider and it is very similar. Also, if you haven't figured it out by now I am a huge fan of anything that makes my home smell yummy and more "holidayish!"

Mulled wine is popular in Europe and a winter beverage that I have always been around and known about but for some reason had never tried until this past Thanksgiving when I decided I was going to make it for my family. My brother-in-law thought I kept saying I was going to serve "mold wine!" He didn't seem too thrilled about the idea at first but when the aroma filled the house he soon jumped on board and enjoyed a glass :-)

Below is the recipe I concocted, with the help of my dad's Grand Marnier suggestion. Enjoy!

Side note: How cute is the cork on this cheap bottle of wine? Sometimes the cheapies just know how to do it!

Serves 4-6 (depending on glass size)
Prep-Time: 5 Minutes
Cook Time: 1+ hours with crock pot or 20 minutes stove top
Serve Warm

What You Will Need:

1 bottle of red wine (preferably something cheap and dry...I used a $4 bottle of Cabernet)
1/8 cup honey
1/2 cup grand marnier
8 whole cloves
1 medium-large orange (plus more for garnishing) 
3 cinnamon sticks (plus more for garnishing)

Let's Get Started:

1) Pour the wine, grand marnier, cloves, honey and cinnamon sticks into your crock pot. Turn crock pot to high.

2) Zest about 85% of the orange into the pot. Then slice the orange and add slices into the mix.

3) Cover and let simmer until it starts to boils. With a crock pot this takes a bit longer but the house starts to smell yummy and the spices really mix in versus a quick boil (which still works if you prefer a pot)

4) Once the Mulled Wine is boiling turn down to warm but keep covered until you are ready to serve.

5) Garnish each glass with a cinnamon stick and an orange slice and serve warm. 

Red Lipstick is Optional
My Red Pants are LC Lauren Conrad for Kohl's and my Top is Banana Republic

Enjoy and Happy Holidays Everyone!



Thursday, December 4, 2014

My Holiday Season Must-Haves!

Well, I don't think I need to say it but I am going to anyway: It is the most wonderful time of the year...and I am stoked! Are you?

I love everything about the holidays. I love the way my home smells from the baking, the christmas tree, the fire, the candles and the constant hot coco stewing on the stove. I love how everyone just seems happier and more thankful. I love how the first thing I smell when I walk into the grocery store (and my home) are those cinnamon pinecones. I love being surrounded by friends and family. I love cheesy made for TV holiday movies as well as the classics (Clark aka Sparky anybody?). I love Egg Nog in my coffee in the mornings. I love spoiling my loved ones. I love all the decorated homes (I mean, if I have to come home from work after the sun has gone down at least I can enjoy the Christmas decorations and lights on my I right?) 

Anyway, you get the picture...I LOVE this time of year and a not-so-small part of that excitement are all the opportunities to dress cute :-) Below are a few of my MUST-HAVES for the Holiday season.

Something Sparkly

Something Red

Something Furry:

A Fun Cocktail Dress

A Great Shoe
(preferably one that works in all weather but still looks fabulous at a party!)

Statement Jewelry

A Great Sweater 
(I also love dressing up my more casual sweaters with leather/sequins pants & skirts)

Happy Holidays Everyone!



Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Homemade Cinnamon Raisin Bread

Who doesn't love the smell of fresh bread? 
Even better, a slice of fresh bread with butter?!

All recipes are created by Jenna unless stated otherwise! I hope you enjoy them as much as we do!

There is nothing better than a homemade loaf of bread right out of the oven. The aroma that fills your kitchen suddenly transforms your house into a home. Baking bread on a crisp fall or winter day is seriously one of my favorite things to do! It is relaxing and comforting...even the process of baking bread warms you up on those cold days. Disclaimer: I live in days are really not that cold but it is all relevant...right?

Below is my recipe for Cinnamon Raisin Bread. I enjoy it toasted and with my coffee in the mornings but I also think it could be a great addition to your Thanksgiving or any of your upcoming holiday dinners.

Makes 1 Loaf (serves about 10)
Prep-Time: 1 hour (not counting rise time)
Rise Time: 3+ hours 
Bake-Time: 40 minute 
Cool-Time: 1 hour (if you can wait that long)

What you will need:

1 1/4 cups warm water; it is important it is not boiling
1/2 tbsp active dry yeast
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp salt (my mom doesn't eat salt and I limit my intake so I have made this recipe without salt and it is still good, however, if you are not used to the absence of salt I highly suggest not skipping this step)
2 tbsp ground cinnamon
2 tbsp raw sugar
1 cup raisins (if you want more go for it)
1/3 cup sweetened shredded coconut 
1/2 cup skim milk (warm for 20 seconds just so it is not cold from the refrigerator when added into the ingredients) 
5 cups unbleached all-purpose flour (don’t be afraid to keep adding if the dough is too sticky)

Let's get started: 

1) In a large bowl (I use our Kitchen Aid) sprinkle the yeast over the warm water. Let the yeast sit for about a minute. 

2) On low beat in the oil, salt, cinnamon, sugar and milk. I use the whisk attachment for this step and let it all mix up for about a minute. You do not want or need to over beat your yeast. 

3) At this point in the process I switch to using my dough hook attachment on my kitchen aid (pictured below). Slowly add in the flour one cup at a time. In betweens cups add in small amounts of raisins and the coconut so that when you finish adding in the flour everything is already mixing in. 

4) If the dough is too sticky you can slowly add in more flour. Once the dough appears to be too thick to mix with tools start to beat/knead it with your hands. Continue to slowly add flour if it is sticking to your hands.

5) Once you have worked the dough (about 2-5 minutes by hand) you will set it aside to let it rise.

6) Cover the dough with a clean damp cloth and place in a warm or sunny place for a minimum of 3 hours. The dough should double in bulk.

7) When you are ready to bake the bread preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

8) Knead the dough one more time (add flour if it is sticky) to get rid of any air pockets.

9) Now, it is ready to bake. I just plop my loaf on a baking sheet but if you prefer you can shape yours at this point or put it in a loaf pan. 

10) Bake for 40 minutes on the middle rack and enjoy the aroma that is starting to fill your home.

11) Let bread cool for about an hour. This is hard to do so don't beat yourself up if you cut into it a bit early...I know I usually do.

Enjoy and Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!