Favorite Holiday Treats

I really love to bake. I am not very good at it, but I enjoy the challenge. I don’t bake very often because, to be honest, I don’t really have anyone to bake for and I’ll just eat it all.

 

But I do like to do some baking around the holidays. You have to load up on the sweet treats! There are so many delicious and adorable treats. So I indulge this time of year.

 

Today I am sharing a few of my holiday treats. Some of these are ones I make, and some of them are ones I am wanting / planning on making, so I can’t guarantee that they are amazing.

 

Holiday Treats

 

I make this red velvet layer cake with peppermint cream cheese frosting every year for Christmas. It is AMAZING and a family favorite. It is a little time consuming, but I promise it is worth it. Instead of 3 mini layers, I do 2 larger layers.

 

Holiday Treats

 

This frozen peppermint cheesecake is another favorite at our house. Can you tell we really like peppermint? This might be Charlie’s favorite. Side note – it calls for chocolate wafers and they were nowhere to be found. It resulted in Charlie coming home with 4 different types of cookies and they were all wrong – one was a weird breakfast bar. I highly recommend using Oreos for the crust. It is delicious and they are easier to find.

 

One other thing – the recipe calls for heavy cream, whipped. No matter what I do, I cannot get heavy cream to be whipped. I’ve tried many times and it never works. So if you are like me, or you are shorter on time, I strongly suggest you get Cool Whip.

 

Holiday Treats

 

I have had these peppermint sugar cookies with cream cheese frosting pinned for a while, but I am thinking this needs to be the year I finally make them! You can’t have too much peppermint, right?

 

Holiday Treats

 

These peppermint marshmallow hot chocolate cookies sounds amazing. This is another one I can’t wait to try. How could it be bad??

 

Holiday Treats

 

These candy cane cookies are so cute and fun. It also helps that they too are peppermint flavored.

 

So now your turn – what are some of your favorite holiday treats? Is there anything you make every year?

 

Want more holiday content? Check out my holiday gift guidefestive fashion picksChristmas decor on a budget and a buffalo check holiday outfit.

Velvet Polka Dots

Holiday Polka Dot Skirt

 

Last week, I talked about some of my holiday styling tips, and one of the tips was adding a little velvet. This polka dot skirt is the perfect way of adding some velvet. The polka dots on the skirt are black velvet, and I love it.

 

If you are looking for a piece to help get you through all of the holiday events (and beyond) that you can style a variety of ways (and that doesn’t cost you an arm and a leg), I highly recommend this skirt. I really love that you can make this skirt really festive, but once January is here, you don’t have to pack it away until next year because it is perfect for winter in general.

 

Holiday Polka Dot Skirt

 

The really great thing about this skirt (besides the price) is that you can do so much with with. It is a really great piece for the holiday season (and beyond) that you can style a number of ways for just about any occasion. I paired it with a festive red sweater, plaid scarf and heeled bow booties for a not too casual, not too dressy look. It would be a great look for a family get together or a more casual office get together.

 

If you are headed to a holiday cocktail party or dressier event (like to see the Nutcracker), you could pair it with a pair of heels, a lace top (like this one) and a statement necklace for fantastic look. This look would be perfect for a New Year’s Eve party as well (you could switch the top out for this one and these shoes).

 

Holiday Polka Dot Skirt

 

If you are looking to go more casual, try mixing prints with a plaid button up and pair it with some fun flats.

 

Kate Spade Bow Booties

 

Finally, if you want to transition this skirt for an office look, pair it with a thin turtleneck and blazer for a sleek work appropriate look. The black, white and camel combo will look super chic.

 

Holiday Polka Dot Skirt

Sweater: Banana Republic (similar); Skirt: J. Crew Factory; Booties: Kate Spade; Scarf: Target (similar)

 

So there are 4 great, really different ways to style this adorable skirt with not a lot of effort.

 

Looking for another holiday inspired look? Check out last week’s post on buffalo check.

Holiday Styling Tips

Holiday Styling Tips

 

Are you getting ready for a full calendar of holiday parties? From low key gathering with friends to cocktail and office parties and family get togethers, December is generally a pretty busy month.

 

It can be a little overwhelming if you have a full social calendar with all the outfit planning. You want to feel festive, but you don’t want to spend a ton on new outfits (or maybe you are like me and you do but that is another post all together…). Luckily there are a few key elements to holiday style that you can quickly incorporate to take you from every day to holiday ready. And they are really easy too.

 

Holiday Styling Tips

Adding a red lip is a great way to amp up your beauty game and feel a little more festive. I love a red lip any time, but especially for the holidays! I think a brighter red (as opposed to a darker red) is really great. Even the simplest outfit feels holiday ready with a red lip.

 

 

Holiday Styling Tips

Is there a better time to dress up than this time of year? Incorporate a little (or a lot) of sparkle to your look like a sequin dress! Whether it is a glitzy necklace or a sequin dress, you can’t go wrong with some sparkle. Even if you aren’t going to a dressy party, pair a sequin piece (like a skirt) with something casual (like a turtleneck or sweater).

 

 

Holiday Style Tips

 

Working a little velvet into your look is another way to make an outfit feel a little more holiday ready. Plus it pairs well with just about anything. Whether it is a simple hair bow or a full dress, velvet is a good choice for the holidays.

 

 

Holiday Style Tips

 

You can’t go wrong with plaid, especially for the holidays. I really can’t get enough of it this time of year. It is perfect for all those parties too! And there are so many great options out there from dresses to tops to accessories.

 

 

So those are just a few of my easy holiday styling tips! Do you have any favorite holiday styling tips?

 

Want more holiday content? Check out my holiday gift guide, festive fashion picks, Christmas decor on a budget and my first holiday outfit.

Book Review: Beartown

Beartown

 

Beartown is the third Fredrik Backman book that I have read, and it did not disappoint. I also read A Man Called Ove and Britt-Marie Was Here. Fredrik Backman is quickly becoming a favorite. His stories always have to do with the rising of an underdog or someone who seems to be beat. And I just love it. Although his books have heavier themes, they are ultimately uplifting through this beating of the odds.

 

Beartown is a hockey town. It is located in the middle of nowhere in the forest. It is cold and snowy most of the time. The town used to be more thriving, but businesses closed and people moved away. And then, all the town had left was hockey.

 

Beartown follows the story of several of the residents of Beartown during a pivotal time for the town. The junior hockey team is fighting its way to the championship game, which could change the town by bringing the economy of the town back to life. Winning the championship could mean more jobs, more money and a hockey school in town, which is a lot of pressure to put on a group of high school boys.

 

After the semi-final game, a violent act turned the town upside down, and leaves the town picking sides. Things get really ugly, accusations are made, and the town is really left questioning their beliefs and loyalty.

 

Beartown is about the hope of a town, and what happens when secrets tear that town apart. It is also about what happens when one person stands up and fights. It is also a coming of age story, which I always enjoy, and how one act can cause a child (and a group of children) to grow up overnight.

 

Although it was really good, Beartown was really different from A Man Called Ove and Britt-Marie Was Here. Both of those has a lot of humor and really quirky characters. There were definitely sad and serious elements to them but there was also a lot of humor, especially through the odd characters. Beartown lacked that humor and quirkiness that the others had. I am not saying that it wasn’t just as good, it was just really different from the others. And I also get that for the story he wanted to tell, that humor wouldn’t have been appropriate.

 

I thought this was such an amazingly timely book, given things that are currently going on. And something that might be an important book for parents and teens to read. As a woman, it made me feel really angry.

 

But anyway, it was really good and I highly recommend all three of his books.

Holiday Buffalo Check

Buffalo Check Skirt

 

I really love buffalo check this time of year. I actually love it for all of fall and winter, but it feels really festive this time of year. And don’t we all just want to feel festive this time of year? I know I do!

 

Buffalo Check Skirt

 

I know buffalo check can feel a little casual, like with the flannel shirts (which are awesome, by the way), but when paired with dressier pieces, the print feels a lot less casual. Even if you are wearing a buffalo check shirt, pair it with a pencil or a-line skirt and a cardigan, and it is totally office appropriate. Throw on a fancy statement necklace and some pumps and you are ready for a date night.

 

Buffalo Check Skirt

 

Buffalo check (along with plaid in general) is one of my favorite prints this time of year. The great thing is that there are so many many buffalo check options out there! You can do a cute scarf, a cardigan, a shirtsockspjs. You name it. I typically think of the red and black combo, but there are other color options out there if that isn’t your thing.

 

So whether it is a buffalo check skirt, shirt or scarf, I strongly suggest you break them out right now.

 

Buffalo Check Skirt

 

Side note – you know what I love about J. Crew Factory? Things I really love from previous years come back and I can get them. I wanted this sweater so bad last year, but I didn’t get it. Then a J. Crew factory version came out this year, and I got it as fast as possible.

 

Buffalo Check Skirt

 

Sweater: J. Crew Factory; Skirt: J. Crew Factory (sold out but this is the same cut, and this one is similar); Shoes: J. Crew (old but these are similar and  I love these)

 

I’ll be dressing this skirt up and styling it a second way in this week’s newsletter because it is a really versatile print. It goes out tomorrow, and you can get it by signing up for emails at the bottom of the post.

 

And you can shop more buffalo check favorites below: