These Are a Few of My Favorite Things Stocking Stuffers

A cup of Starbucks has never let me down. This simple gift makes me so happy!

Two | My mom, sissy, and I love us some Benefit. So many fave blushes of mine all in this holiday value set. Plus, it’s called “Cheeky Sweet Spot.” Even better!

Three | Hi, my name is Elise and I’m having a baby girl. #givemeallthebowsintheworld But yeah…I’ll take one of everything from Willow Crowns, please. And matching headbands with my little


Happy Fall Bark

What is it about fall that makes my sweet tooth come out like whoa?! I saw the inspiration behind this recipe on Pinterest…and then found myself buying the necessary ingredients at Harris Teeter the next day.

1 package white chocolate bark/candy melts
Candy Corn
Sprinkles (I used rainbow since I didn’t have Halloween/fall colored ones!)
Anything else you want in your bark…pretzels, Reese’s pieces, M&Ms…you decide!

1. Break apart Oreo cookies and spread across a baking tray.
2. Add candy corns. (I saved a few to put on top so not all of them would be covered in white chocolate!)
3. Melt bark according to instructions.
4. Using a spatula, spread melted bark on to the baking tray to desired thickness.
(Optional: add sprinkles/candy corn on top for more color!)
5. Cool in refrigerator until hardened. Use a knife to break apart into pieces.It’s that simple. It didn’t take me more than 10 minutes to make. And I honestly didn’t even look at a recipe since the method is pretty self-explanatory.I kinda think it looks cute too. Such a fun treat.
But don’t get me wrong. This stuff is dangerous.
So dangerous that I had to do this…

Yep. Owning it. I liked loved it so much that I had to give it away in fear of consuming the whole container to myself. Plus, Mark and his sales team deserved the Saturday work day sugar high pick me up, right? 🙂

P.S. In that note I was (obviously?) kidding about the healthy part. It’s a fall treat. Mark texted me from work asking how it was healthy. I thought I was being funny…sigh. Oh well. #storyofmylife I tried!


Home Tour Master Closet

Welcome to the girliest room in our home! Before Marky and I got married, he had only one decor request: tone down the pink. From high school till getting married, my room was thematically light pink and dark brown–coordinating monogrammed headboard and all. Though I didn’t mind making our master bedroom more neutral, I also gave myself full permission to girl it up in my closet.
Just so you can see the dramatic difference… Here’s the door to the closet from our master bathroom, which is clearly filled with my
most favorite color combination [as seen ALL throughout our wedding]: gray and white

The bins above hold folded casual long sleeve and short sleeve shirts.I was pinspired to make that little “print” above with my gold foil pen.
Fall winter clothes in the back. Tops up above.
And eventually I’ll hang pants down on the bottom (though they aren’t bothering me piled on that shelf right now
Been color coordinating the closet situation since high school.
I observed that I wear a LOT more neutrals in the fall/winter.
Bins above hold leggings (left to right) winter scarves, tank tops, summer scarves, more tank tops, and leggings.
I’m in love with this rug from Rugs USA. Pink and purpley perfection.

And finally…my shoe wall. I put these shelves together by myself last Friday. Not gonna lie, I’m pretty proud.
I had the day off and Marky was working…#nailedit. #Butreally.

Most of these are oldies but goodies. When I find a pair heels that doesn’t hurt to wear, I won’t give them up.Yes, of course there is a leopard she
Boots and flats at the bottom.

Little gold hearts make everything better! They couldn’t have been easier to install as well.
[Urban Walls post coming tomorrow!]

And if you’re wondering if I hogged the whole closet and left my hubby to a dresser/drawers alone, I didn’t!
His closet is right through that folding door. [He only has to bear walking through the girly room.]
– painted doors
– hardwood floors (previously carpet)
– (more of a wish than a “to do”) a mini chandelier instead of the standard fixture that’s up there now
– My OCD self would like to buy all of the same hanger for everything. But my frugal self thinks buying matching hangers when I have hangers that work perfectly already is ridiculous. We’ll see who wins. [My guess is the frugal self. :)]

Paint Color: ?! Original to the house 🙂
Door Color: Sherwin Williams Urbane Bronze
Gold Heart Decals: Urban Walls Little Hearts
Rug: Rugs USA Windsor Overdyed Rug in pink (it comes in more colors too!)
“Shoe Shelves”: Wal Mart Ameriwood 5-shelf bookcase [$30!!!]
Lingerie chest: been in my room since I was little!
Baskets/bins: Target
Put on Love “Print”: DIY; frame $9.99 from Michaels [buy one get one free this week


Wife After God Thoughts and Reflections

Wife After God is far from a typical devotional. Believe me, this one is different. The words that fill the pages leapt out of the book and into my heart.

As an advocate of devotionals, being in Scripture daily, and living a life that aims towards Christ-likeness, I want to explain to you why this Wife After God felt so “different” to me (and why I think you should read it too!). Furthermore, my sweet friend Kaitlyn and I wanted to connect with the other wives who have read along with us!

Here I explain my heart for Wife After God:
Each day is a lovely length. Not too short–I tend to speed through shorter devotions knowing that “this will just take a minute.” Not too long–it didn’t feel tempted to put it off with the [terrible] excuse of “ugh, this will take me an hour.”

– And 30 days is a reasonable goal. That’s all it takes: setting aside a few moments of peace each day for 30 days. (Yes, this book will bring you peace!)

– The organizational format of this book is so well developed. The predictable daily flow of the devotional encourages a deep connection to the text. Each day goes a little something like this:
(1) Scripture. There is no better way to begin each day’s reading than being in the Word!
(2) Thought. Author Jen Smith’s thought on the day’s topic. It captivates the heart. It connects with the reader. It awakens the Spirit within you. It convicts. It encourages. It is the perfect second step in your daily devotional journey.
(3) Prayer. This section leaves no excuse not to pray and converse with God…because it’s written right there for you! You pray not only for your heart but for your husband’s too. The prayers are full of humility and roll right off the tongue. They’re not too formal; moreover, they’re like a stream of consciousness between you and the Lord.
(4) Challenge. Each day has a challenge paired with the topic. Bring it on!! This is engaging…created to push you towards Christ-likeness.
(5) Status Update. Social Media integration! I love this. One thing I am passionate about is the privilege to use social media as a platform to make the name of Jesus great. Because why not?! If we are living for His glory, we should live to make Him famous!! Additionally, though this tactic, you can reach be in community with other readers at the same time as reaching nonbelievers!
(6) Questions. This is when you journal, reflect, and hopefully dialogue in fellowship with other women. These questions require vulnerability. Grab your journal for this one!


Before the Blog The Honeymoon

Y’all know all about our wedding thanks to the lovely tab above. But what about our honeymoon?! I just have to share some little tidbits with you because it was the best. And because winter makes me daydream of tropical beaches with white sand and clear blue water.
Of course, pictures are always the best way to share. That way I don’t ramble on and on.
Because sometimes you just wanna chill with your feet in the water?! Why not?
My honeymoon drink of choice: mint julep as a daiquiri. Whaaa? Brilliant.
The staff would literally come up to you in the pool and ask if they could bring you something.
The food. Die.
My favorite foods in the world on one plate: sushi, fries, chips and salsa/guac.
The only food fave missing? Pizza.At the hydrotherapy circuit at the resort’s spa. The resort is beautiful.
That mint water was the most refreshing thing I’ve ever tasted. (And so lovely looking too!)
Our resort was the last in a string of resorts. So when we walked towards the right of the hotel, there was a whole lot of nothing-but-beach. It was flawlessly gorgeous!We only stayed for a few nights (so we savored every second!). It was a mini-moon. I’ll tell you why in the next Before the Blog post…tomorrow!

P.S. We’re going back on our 5 year anniversary. Yep, already planned it. Can’t wait!!! 3.5 years to go…


These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things Stocking Stuffers

It’s that time again!Grab the button above, link it back to Cheers Y’all and Down with the Dearmore’s, & share your stocking stuffers…for you/anyone/everyone!
(For more detailed instructions…check our this post!

one // The cross. Gold. Love this bangle!

two // I am obsessed with this custom address stamp! I should’ve ordered it sooner for Christmas cards. Still on my list though…I adore it!

three // [Doesn’t even need an explanation.]

four // My favorite underwear. Because we all can always use an extra pair. Good thing I don’t have to worry getting these because Panty Claus visits my family every year. (A weird/creepy/yet awesome family tradition. They come with a bathroom-themed original Christmas carol that you have to sing out loud. On camera. I can’t make these things up.)

five // Daintiest, cutest knitted ear winter headband. Love the subtle bow. They come in many colors! Thank you, Etsy.

six // My most favorite bracelets: Lily and Laura! I have 3 that I wear all the time. More than fair trade wages are given back to the women in Nepal who weave them. Read more about this awesome company with an inspiring cause on their website!

seven // A charitable donation…to any charity near and dear to your heart.
Of course I picked the above in honor of my sister, Hope

eight // We always get candy in our stockings. I learned just a few days ago that my hubs got one of these in his stocking every year growing up. My stocking candy of choice? A cow tale. Anyone ever heard of that?


Embrace The Rain

I love that it rained during my little sissy’s engagement pictures. The rain made the photos even more perfect.
Just under one year ago (Nov 19, 2012, to be exact) Hope was admitted to the hospital for a scheduled surgery to combat some severe Crohn’s disease complications. She is a rockstar. In a small, very simply put nutshell: surgery 1 turned into Thanksgiving in the hospital turned into emergency surgery 2 turned into a scary stay in the ICU turned into a 99% chance of spending Christmas in the hospital.
But our God is still in the miracle business, and we got our Christmas miracle last year when Hopey came home from the hospital just in the nick of time for Christmas with our whole family. (You can read more about that story here
The rain in these pictures couldn’t be more symbolic.
You know what? I’m pretty sure the rain was there on purpose. 🙂

[KV, I’m crying! Thank you. These are treasures for our family forever! We love you!!!] 

You don’t hear Hope complaining about Crohn’s. Sure, it’s a part of her life (everyyyday), but it doesn’t define her. She doesn’t let it bring her down. And she certainly makes light of it a whoooolllleee lot more than she ever cries or complains about it. Not to mention…as a defensive and protective older sis, I have noticed that it’s a completely different story to battle a chronic disease when it looks like you’re completely healthy on the outside…I could get on my soapbox about that!! But I won’t. 😉
I am positive that God is using Hope’s life to inspire and speak to others. Positivity. Faith. Perseverance. HOPE. My sister is all of these things.

These Are a Few of My Favorite Things

I hear new parents everywhere quickly learn that their coffee/tea gets cold on a daily basis. We could even use one of these without having Nancy around yet!! This would work as a stocking stuffer as well.

Two | I’m telling y’all, Land of Nod’s pouf selection is amazing and so reasonably priced compared to other retailers. I’m crushing on this gold one…but there are so many other fabulous colors and options too!

Three | Yes, I confess. I am the kind of person who will always enjoy a good throw no matter how many I already have. Loving this faux fur porcupine one from TJMaxx, nonetheless!

Four | Thinking of getting into essential oils? Or love them already but don’t have a diffuser? We are in love with ours! I wrote about it being the best Christmas present last year. Still use it on a daily basis. It can make our house smell like a spa. It’s crazy!

Five | Yes, yes, yes! Please! I am majorly crushing on these ABC Scripture Memory Cards for Nancy and me…I can’t wait to teach her about Jesus and help her memorize Scripture! In the meantime, these would look miiiighty pretty in her nursery. Love me some French Press Mornings!

Happy December!


These Are a Few of My Favorite Things My List

Truth is I’ve been eyeing this pair for a couple of years (!!!). Since the fascination hasn’t died down, I think it’s time to pull the trigger on owning my first pair of Hunter Boots.

Two | Surprise! This isn’t a purse…it’s a diaper bag. Is it not the most un-diaper bag you’ve ever seen?! I’m obsessed with it. Complete with ten interior pockets and the gray leather strap and bottom, I swoon for this bag.

Three | This has become a tradition within our little Houston family. For the past two years of marriage, Mark has purchased me a new pair of snuggly flannel pajamas. He thinks they look cute; I think they look cute AND are the comfiest ever. Here is my pick for this year: pupjamas!

Four | I want to get more serious about my oils before the bebe arrives. There’s nothing more perfect to do that with than the family physician kit! Cannot wait to use it on our little family. (You might remember that last Christmas, I began my essential oil journey with a diffuser. It’s still something Mark and I use almost daily!)

Five | In my world, this is the ultimate gift card of all gift cards in the history of ever. Triple threat.

Six | Because I have visions of sweet potato/cucumber/zuchinni pasta dancing in my head…

Seven | A gift towards being your best self, to health, and fun too. A month or three of PB is a lovely Christmas gift that keeps on giving. Not that I’m obsessed or anything


Beach Baby Houston

In case you missed this little announcement on Insta yesterday…!
This is the best news of our lives.It’s my longest dream coming true.
Words cannot express our joy!
Here are a few more pictures taken by my sweet friend Shannon, owner of Shannon Lynn Photography. If you’re ever in the area (ILM/Wrightsville/Figure 8/Carolina Beach), be sure to hit her up for a photo sesh! You’ll love her as much as I do!!
For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them. How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! If I would count them, they are more than the sand.