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I get all heart-eyes at the adorable Valentine’s Day decorations and gifts I see in stores, but let’s be honest — my actual Valentine could probably care less about heart balloons and cocktail stirrers (love you Hubs!). Which is why I’m absolutely delighted that  Galentine’s Day has become an increasingly popular celebration thanks to the hilarious champion of girl-gangs, Miss Leslie Knope. Sending your best gal-pals a Valentine’s Day treat, or even throwing a festive Galentine’s Day brunch, are the perfect excuse to stock up on heart-covered trinkets, festive pink decorations, and tons of sweet treats. I’ve saved a few of my favorite Galentine’s Day celebration gifts and ideas below to help you get in the spirit!  read more

It feels so appropriate that my last blog post was a 41-week pregnancy update, and I’m jumping back in after two weeks off from blogging to share the news of our little family addition! Jane Emerson Bowler was born on Friday, January 20th at 6:04pm after quite a few days of laboring, restless nights, doctor’s visits, and a surprise C-section for her grand finale! She is the absolute best 8 lb bundle of love that has ever existed (okay, I may be biased). We have been learning our new “normal” over the past two weeks, getting in lots of snuggles and sniffs of that delicious newborn baby smell in between a few sleepless nights. I’ve got lots of big plans to share a full birth story, posts about what I packed in my hospital bag, and how we’re surviving these first few weeks. But for now, I’ll leave with you a few candid pictures from the selection of hundreds I’ve already taken on my iPhone! Welcome to the world Miss Jane!  read more

Well, I didn’t think I’d be writing a post with “week 41” in the title, but Baby B is enjoying her stay and just doesn’t want to seem to make her arrival yet! I spoke to my mom on the phone this week and I joked that she couldn’t be my child, I absolutely hate being late. My mom assured me though that she would be exactly like me, because this baby is doing things her own way and demanding  complete control of the situation around her. Mom’s always tell it like it is, and I realized she couldn’t be more right.  So while we not-so-patiently await her to let us know when she’s ready to greet the world, I figured I would squeeze in one more bump update! read more

I’ve seen lots of people sharing their New Year’s Resolutions on social media, and one resolution that keeps popping up is the commitment to drink more water. Eight glasses a day is the goal, and I’ve been trying my hardest to keep to that over the last few months of my pregnancy to stay hydrated. It can be really hard to keep it up (especially with a few fun side affects of this baby bump!), but I’ve been getting much better at it. One thing that’s really helped is having a new Swell water bottle that keeps my H20 icy cold. Another is mixing up flat water with something that has a little bubble, and adding a few fresh elements like citrus and herbs for a tasty infusion. I thought I’d share a few ideas for your own citrus, herb, or berry infused concotions to inspire more healthy hydration in the New Year! read more

We have, understandably, been spending a lot of the past few months taking our weekends a little slower than usual. I typically have to use our weekends as time to get projects and shoots done for the blog and some freelance clients, so I’ve been trying really hard to condense my weekend work to Saturdays to leave Sunday open for some true downtime. As a result of being a bit more successful at this division of work and rest, we’ve been having some really nice Sundays, camped out on the couch with the fireplace crackling, and usually some football games on TV. 

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I’m super excited to have one of my recipes featured in this month’s issue of Family Circle, a perfect treat for those last few January Sundays on the couch watching football. I took a classic game day snack and gave it a healthier twist with a big tray of crispy baked brussels sprouts tossed with a classic game-day flavor: buffalo wing sauce. The spicy brussels sprouts are baked to a crisp and pairs with a cool, refreshing Hidden Valley Ranch dip. I love that combination of spicy heat and cool ranch flavors — it makes these so addictive! Serve them on their own, or as a fun side dish for burgers or chicken sandwiches.  read more

I have a tradition of waiting to start New Year’s Resolutions until after my birthday on the 10th, because I know I usually still have a week of partying left in me. Why commit to goals I know I’m going to break? This year is a little bit different, the partying is taking a hiatus while we wait for Baby B to arrive. I’m still completely and totally exhausted, but it has nothing to do with my champagne intake this year! The benefit of waiting a bit to write your resolutions is you get to be inspired by what others are sharing about their own goals and intentions. Reading resolution posts from other writers and friends is so energizing – I love to hear what people are working on and how they’re approaching their New Year outlook. read more

Four days away from my due date and the artwork is hung, the shelves are styled, and the drawers are organized — the nursery is complete, without a moment to spare! This is probably one of my favorite rooms in the house now. My husband painted it (Kentucky Haze by Benjamin Moore), installed floating shelves and hung up all of the artwork, and I stood in the corner and directed (A little to the left! You missed a spot!) — team effort! After all of that hard work it’s one of the rooms in our home that has a sense of completeness — and will feel even more complete when our little tenant arrives soon. I am so excited to share a few more details below! 

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Happy New Year! I mentioned in my last post how much I love celebrating the New Year; it’s an amazing feeling to start with a clean slate and to be able to see all of the opportunities that lie ahead. This year though feels a bit different! The normal surge of energy I typically feel from the new year, full of possibilities and fresh calendar pages, is not quite as present at 39 weeks pregnant as it has been in the past. In fact, my biggest accomplishment in the first two days of the year has been successfully getting my socks and shoes on in the morning!  But I’m doing my best to use this quiet time before the baby’s arrival to capitalize on the start of the year by reflecting on 2016, gathering inspiration and clarity for 2017, and attempting (slowly!) to get things organized for a productive new year.  read more

Just a few more days until we reach my favorite holiday, New Year’s Eve! I’m a New Year’s nerd and love the feeling of a clean slate that the change of the calendar brings. And then of course there’s the literal change of the calendar — my husband got me the cutest Sugar Paper planner for a Christmas gift! Not to mention the sparkly, metallic party decor and champagne bottle popping that comes with this particular holiday. New Year’s Eve, tucked in a week after Christmas, can be a scramble to prepare for and I always find myself searching last minute for the party decor details I need for my annual celebration. This year, just a week out from my due date, we’re hosting a small dinner party. To help prep, I thought I’d share some of my favorite last-minute resources for the best festive New Year’s Eve party supplies:  read more