FAVORITE THINGS PARTY RECAP & NOVEMBER REWIND

Hi friends! I hope you are sufficiently caffeinated for this post because it’s a long one!  If you need to go make yourself a fresh cup of coffee first, I’ll wait!

That’s better!

FAVORITE THINGS PARTY RECAP

If you follow me on Stories, you might have seen our Favorite Things party live and in action on Friday.  It’s also saved to my Highlights if you missed it.

The party was such a blast and full of so many belly laughs.  I’m so thankful for this group of friends.  They killed it with their gift giving this year, and I’m sharing below what everyone brought.

But, before we get to that, here’s how we do it!  Everyone brings three gifts, $25 limit on each, so $75 total.

If your gift is less than $25, you can add to it to bring the total to $25.  If you’re interested in hosting your own favorite things party, check out this post with all the details about how we do ours.

Of course, the party would be just as fun with whatever gift limit you and your friends want to choose, it’s up to y’all!

Stephanie • Gina • Kelly • Liz • Manuela

Favorite Things Party

collapsible tote

Here’s what everyone brought this year!

Ali-Shaun // Collapsible Crate/Storage Bin + Starbuck’s Gift Card •  She keeps the crate it in the trunk of her car with dirty cleats, towels and then hoses it off to clean.  They also stack slim if you have more than one.  She brought the smaller size, but also has the big ones in her car.

Megan // Wrap Bracelets • I wear mine daily, they go with everything and are super lightweight.  I’m also smitten with the new enamel bracelets.

Marianna // Makeup Brush Cleaner (cleans and dries in 30 seconds) & Makeup Brush Shampoo

Angela // Wool Hat + Starbuck’s Gift Card • The hat comes in several colors with a decorative band and is adjustable.

Courtney //  Match StrikeCamel Tassel

Rhonda // Makeup Junkie Bag & SuperGoop Sunscreen

Tisha // Egg Cooker (cooks in 8 minutes with no odor)

KC // Fuzzy Slippers

Jamie // Soma Sleep Shirt

Gina // Bracelets from Twist of Colours

Andrea // Everything you need when you’re a spectator at your kids’ games : Quilted outdoor ThrowSeat cushion  • • Moose MunchPocket Size heat padsWater BottleSupergoop Setting PowderTote and for fun, Magnetic Eyelashes Have you tried those yet?! 

Stephanie // Coffee Grinder + Coffee Beans – from France! #youfancy!

Tarah // Bum Bum Cream • This cream is divine, goes on like butter and smells heavenly.  If you wear it, be prepared for men to flock to you and smother you with compliments. Or so she says.

Shannon H. // SkinnyTaste Cookbooks • She credits Whole30, her air fryer and the SkinnyTaste cookbooks for helping fight the “battle of the bulge” . Whatever she’s doing, she looks great!

Manuela // Lipsense Lipstick

Megan B.  // Supergoop SPF Setting Powder

Megan M. // Keychain Bracelet

Shannon G. // Olly Flawless Complexion GummiesEarrings Set

Kelly // Mrs. Meyers soap set

Elizabeth // Rustic Cuff bracelet

A few more things that make great gifts!

Weighted Blanket • Marianna says she swears by this one and now I want one too!  It’s only $40 for the 60×80 20 lb. version (but they have other sizes/weights) and has gotten over 700 great reviews.  I’m not sure I want one that heavy, but if you have one, let me know what weight you prefer in the comments.

Collapsible Tote • Similar to the gift Ali-Shaun brought this year, I received Angela’s gift last year – this collapsible tote and I use it all the time.  It’s super sturdy, perfect for travel too.

I just bought the prettiest set of kitchen tools in white/gold.  My mom’s favorite color is mint, so I got that set for her for Christmas.

My Nutribullet is saving me – or at least helping balance out all the sugar lately!  It’s super easy to use and I like how petite it is- perfect for small storage spaces.

RHONDA’S CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE RECIPE

Rhonda’s chocolate chip cookies are the stuff dreams are made of. She brought them last year and I’ve been dreaming of them ever since.  They have a chewy texture and are filled with extra chips.

Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe:

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup Crisco (I use the Crisco sticks instead of the can)
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar packed
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 cups All-Purpose flour
  • 1 box INSTANT vanilla pudding
  • 1 bag of semi sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2  bag of semi sweet chocolate minis

Instructions:

Set oven to 375 degrees.

Cream butter and Crisco together with sugars until creamy. Add eggs one at a time. Add in the vanilla, salt, and baking soda. I like to add in a little extra salt when I bake with chocolate so my teaspoon is not exact. It is a SMALL teaspoon mound if that makes sense. But be careful, too much salt can ruin the taste.

Next add in the vanilla pudding powder and the flour. Stir in your chocolate chips.

Once the oven is preheated, place cookies in Tablespoon full mounds on a cookie sheet and bake 10-12 minutes depending on your oven. Some ovens have quicker bake times. The key is to under bake the cookies! This keeps them chewy. Take them out when they are no longer glossy in the middle and the edges are barely brown. You will think they aren’t done. Let them cool on the cookie sheet so they continue to bake a little.

I think they are best fresh from the oven. Store the leftovers in air tight container so they don’t go stale. ENJOY!

** Subscribe to my blog to get a PRINTABLE VERSION of this recipe and my entire printable library.  If you’re already subscribed, look for a link to my printables library in the HWH Weekend Edition on Saturday.

BAKED BRIE IN PUFF PASTRY

I make this baked Brie every year and it’s always all gone by the end of the party!

Baked Brie in Puff Pastry

 Baked Brie Recipe: 

Ingredients:

  • 1 sheet puff pastry (thawed)
  • All-Purpose flour, for rolling
  • 1 round brie cheese, (8 to 12 ounces, 5-7inch in diameter)
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • Baguette slices, crackers, or sliced apples for serving
  • 2 Tbsp. Butter
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup Walnuts

Instructions:

Heat the oven to 400°F. Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment and set aside, or bake your brie in a pie plate.

Roll out the puff pastry. Dust a work surface with a small amount of flour. Unwrap the puff pastry and place it on the flour. Coat a rolling pin with a little flour and roll out the puff pastry into a rough 11-inch square. No need to get out a ruler; it’s fine to estimate.

Wrap the brie in the pastry. Place the round of brie in the middle of the pastry. Saute the butter, brown sugar and walnuts together and place on top of Brie.  Fold the corners over the brie, forming a neat package. Use your hand to gently press the edges against the brie and neaten up the sides.

Transfer the wrapped brie to the baking sheet or pie plate. Place the wrapped brie to the baking sheet or pie plate. If the pastry has warmed and is no longer cool to the touch at this point, place refrigerate for 10 minutes, or until you’re ready to bake and serve.

Brush with egg. Brush the pastry all over with the beaten egg. Be sure to get the sides and around the folds. Try not to let the egg puddle under the brie.

Bake until golden-brown, 35 to 40 minutes. Bake until the pastry is deep golden-brown, 35 to 40 minutes.

Allow to cool 5 to 10 minutes. Set aside to cool for 5 to 10 minutes. This gives the hot cheese time to firm up a little. Cut into the brie early and most of it will gush right out — which is still delicious, but less tidy.

Transfer to a serving platter. Use the parchment paper to transfer the brie to a serving plate. If you baked it in a pie plate, serve straight from the plate, but double check that the plate has cooled enough to handle.

Serve warm. Arrange sliced baguette, crackers, or sliced apples around the brie and serve while warm.

** Subscribe to my blog to get a PRINTABLE VERSION of this recipe and my entire printable library.  If you’re already subscribed, look for a link to my printables library in the HWH Weekend Edition on Saturday.

NOVEMBER REWIND

It’s time to take a quick look back at last month and get you caught up on what you might have missed.

Holiday Gift Guide

What a fun month it was!  I had so much fun putting together my first Holiday Gift Guide and gifting y’all with these things!

28 of you got to pick YOUR favorite thing from these items as small token of my appreciate for you!

1 • 2 • 3 • 4 • 5 • 6 • 7 • 8 • 9 • 10 • 11 • 12 • 13 • 14 • 15 •16 • 17 • 18 •19 • 20 • 21 • 22 • 23 • 24 • 25

Stress Free Holiday Planning

With Christmas just two weeks away, if you’re feeling a bit stressed, try my tips for Stress Free Holiday Planning.  One thing is for sure, it helps if you don’t have too many things crammed into your holiday schedule.  I took photos for holiday cards, but I’m not sure they will actually get sent out this year!

Family Christmas Pajamas (2)

Pajamas | Mom • James • Jordan

AMAZON

Did you know I finally created an Amazon Storefront?!  It took me a minute to figure out how to create it, but now it’s live and you can shop my faves from all categories like fashion, home decor, beauty, and more.  I’ll be updating it often as I find more things worth sharing!

November was full of lots of cozy sweaters, holiday outfits and great Amazon finds! We started off the month with an Amazon Hits post, which you guys seem to love!

Amazon Fashion Faves #1

Amazon Fashion Faves November

Star Sweater • Jeans • Boots | Sweater • Jeans • Booties | Sweater • Jeans • Boots | Dress • Heels

Amazon Fashion Faves #2

Amazon Fashion Faves

Bodysuit • Pants • HeelsSweater • Jeans • Boots | Coat • White Tee • Jeans • BootsBodysuit • Skirt • Heels

YOUR AMAZON FAVES 

I love seeing what YOU love each month, and here are your November favorites!

Let's be friends!

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Fit & Flare Dress

V-Neck Tunic

Cowl Neck Pullover 

Down Coat

Colorblock Pullover

Grey Fringe Poncho

YOUR AMAZON HOME FAVES

Softest Bed Sheets • Always a reader fave #everymonth!

Tree Door Mat • I’m sure ours will brighten our porch all Winter long!

Y’all sold out my Christmas door wreath, but this one is similar and on PRIME!

STYLE

We kicked off the month with 25 affordable Fall and Winter outfits  to inspire your own wardrobe.  Whether you’re getting dressed up, running around with the kids, or just want to look cute and be comfortable, this post is for you!

It’s been all about leggings this time of year, I shared several long tops that go perfectly with leggings and keep all your parts covered!

what to wear with leggings

Houston weather is so temperamental, we’ve had 80 degree temps, followed by downright COLD days.  I partnered with JCPenney to share two super cute and warm winter outfits. 

Winter Outfits

High Rise Skinny Jeans • White Puffer Vest • Henley • Booties •  Beanie | Jeans • V-Neck Tee • Jacket • Wedge Sneakers

The two sweaters in this post were among your faves for November!

Black Jeans • Fair Isle Sweater • Black Jean Jacket • BootiesSide Detail Jeans • Sweater • Jean Jacket • Snakeskin Clutch • Similar Booties

If you’ve got people to see and parties to go to, I’ve got ya covered with two holiday outfits – one dressy casual and one party ready!

two holiday party outfits

Tank • Skirt • Heels • Clutch • Necklace | Tank • Jeans • Heels • Clutch

Y’all always love it when Ali-Shaun stops by and I do too! I got her in the dressing room for a big Black Friday post.  You can see everything she tried on here.

Ali-Shaun style a friend

Plaid Top • Jeans • Wedge Sneakers | Dress | Cardigan

FAVORITE THINGS 

I joined my longtime friend Sarah for her Favorite Things Party, and I shared my top pics in beauty, jewelry and home items.

 

Fave Things- beauty

GloPROMandelic Acid Radiance SerumVitamin C Treatment ComplexMakeup Sponges + ConcealerNail Gel Base Coat • In a Hurry Air Dry Top CoatHairdryer + Brush in One

Fave Things - accessories

 Star Necklace •  set of delicate ringsVictoria Emerson Wrap Bracelets •  Faux Leather Drop Earrings •  Watch

Fave Things - household items

 UGG Slippers throw blanket • Coffee / Tea WarmerThrow BlanketTowelsSheets

NOVEMBER LOVES

Every month I put together a collage of things I’m loving, want to try, or recommend.  The Star Necklace was what I got the most comments on in November Loves. And now there’s a new Star Necklace just released.

Reversible ScarfKeychainHat • Teddy Bear Fleece • Star Necklace • Ring • Nail PolishGloPROFlocked Christmas TreeWreath • Door Mat • Down Coat

YOUR NOVEMBER LOVES

Here’s what y’all are loving this month:

Fair Isle Turtleneck Sweater

Mandelic Acid Radiance Serum

Zella High Waist Leggings

Shirttail Tunic

HOME DECOR

Although we’re nearing Christmas now, lots of things I used at Thanksgiving, will reappear at our Christmas dinner.  All of these hosting items are available on PRIME!

 

 Folding ChairsApronBanner •  Candle Holders •  Votive HoldersTea Light Candles •  Dutch OvenCheese Board •  FlatwareCharger Plates •  Serving Platter •  Electric Oven Roaster •  Wine Opener •  Place Cards & Holders •  Tablecloth •  Napkins

 

JUST (THE BEST) NOVEMBER SALES

Everyone loves a good deal and I don’t mind doing the scouring for ya!  Here are the Top 3 sale items of the month.

Barefoot Dreams Hooded Cardigan was $114, now $73

Longchamp Tote was $155, now $103

Cargo Pants was $68, now $39

 

If you made it this far, BLESS YOU!  Thank you so much for being here, I always appreciate your company.

Have a fantastic day friends!

 

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13 Comments

  1. Kim
    December 10, 2019 / 9:04 am

    I always love the Favorite things blog posts and wish I had a group of friends that would participate in something like this. I did notice that many of the gifts were well over the $25 price point, while some were under the $25. Wouldn’t it be better to just set a range then? Has this ever caused issues with comparison?

    • Megan
      Author
      December 10, 2019 / 9:05 am

      Sure, you can do it however you and your friends want! Sometimes you catch a sale and that helps!

      • Debbie Tracy
        December 10, 2019 / 12:28 pm

        Came here for Rhonda’s Choc Chip Cookie Recipe. Such a fantastic recap! Thanks Megan! You really do such a wonderful job! Have a very very blessed Christmas!!

        • Megan
          Author
          December 10, 2019 / 8:24 pm

          Those cookies are so good!! Merry Christmas to you to Debbie!

  2. elizabeth
    December 10, 2019 / 9:37 am

    Great post Megan! So much fun watching your Favorite Things party on IG stories! Lots of good gifts this year 🙂
    That baked brie looks so good! I’m def going to try that soon.
    I got a weighted blanket about a month ago and got the 10 lb throw size. I’m petite like you and this weight is perfect. I just put it on top of our quilt on my side of the bed. Just a warning: I’ve been having the CRAZIEST dreams lol, but I am sleeping really well.
    I got the YnM brand from Amazon with the bamboo fabric (good for Texas’ ever changing weather).

  3. Sandra
    December 10, 2019 / 10:38 am

    Great post, so many ideas for gift giving. Thanks for sharing. You truly have an amazing group of friends!

  4. Jane H.
    December 10, 2019 / 3:17 pm

    Wow! That post was jam-packed with great information. And that event looks like a great time!

    • Megan
      Author
      December 10, 2019 / 8:24 pm

      Thanks so much for stopping by Jane!

  5. Carmen
    December 11, 2019 / 12:29 pm

    My mother in law uses this cookie recipe and they are to die for. Her cookies are famous and the first thing anyone requests when she asks, “What can I bring?”

    • Megan
      Author
      December 11, 2019 / 3:20 pm

      YES! It’s sooo good! I couldn’t put them down!

  6. Kristin Rowell
    December 13, 2019 / 4:09 pm

    I look forward to this post every year! Great gift ideas and good fun with a bonus in the form of the baked Brie recipe. I’ve been wanting to give that a try and with your directions I think I will!
    Also the show and tell
    Thanks for another great year of content.

    • Megan
      Author
      December 15, 2019 / 8:33 pm

      Thanks so much for letting me know Kristin! That brie is always a hit – and I do reheat it the next day! I really love it with the green apples.

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