December Goals

This month is flying by faster than I'd like -- it's hard to believe we're just two weeks out from Christmas! Today I'll be sharing my goals for the month, as well as checking in to see how I did on my November goals.

1. Finish all of our Christmas shopping and wrapping by December 1st
Done! This felt SO good and I'm planning on doing this again next year -- it was so nice to have all of our shopping done before the cold weather hit! 

2. Design, Address, and Send Christmas Cards
This was one of those "choose your battles" types of situations. I sat down and started illustrations for these, but was feeling like there was too much pressure to get them illustrated, designed, printed, and sent all in a matter of two weekends since our month was so busy. I gave myself some grace and told Andy we can send them next year -- which will also involve designing them in August instead of November. :)

3. New Thanksgiving Recipe
Done! I'll be sharing this recipe on the blog tomorrow! 

4. Add to My Wishlist
Done! I have a post on it here.

5. Get My Rings Cleaned + Inspected
Done! This has been on my to-do list for so long, so it felt great to have this completed!

Below are the goals I plan to focus on during the month of December:

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1. Wear Gloves at all Times
This is something that I always fail to do -- even though it's freezing outside, if I'm just running a quick errand, I'll often just pop inside and leave my gloves in the car. The result is freezing cold hands, and dry, chapped skin. I want to be better about being proactive on this! 

2. Moisturize Daily
This brings me to my next goal -- moisturize daily. This has been something that I've neglected lately -- it's so important to be proactive with moisturizing especially during these cold winter months! I want to be better about apply facial moisturizer each evening before bed, and moisturizing my body after showering each morning.

3. Switch to a New Foundation
My foundation has been bothering me lately -- it feels too dark and heavy. I also feel like I need something that is a little more sophisticated than my usual makeup routine. I want it to be simple yet polished and am looking forward to getting matched at a local makeup counter.

4. Go on a Few Christmas Date Nights
We have a few holiday events on the calendar, but I'd love to incorporate the holidays into our Friday night date nights this month! 

5. Have a Solo Date at Barnes & Noble
Our calendar feels like it is jam-packed this month, and I'd really like to be intentional about a few solo dates this month. A coffee paired with a stack of books at Barnes & Noble sounds like the perfect evening after work.

What is something you'd like to accomplish this month?
Favorite brand of foundation?

A Christmas Date Night

On Saturday evening, we headed out for a Christmas-y date night! My sister and her husband gifted us tickets to a Christmas concert at the church we went to as kids and it was so fun to attend this holiday event! 

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As we headed to my hometown, we made a quick stop along the way at a bookstore to pick up a new Bible study book. I've heard so many good things about this one and I'm excited to start it next month! 

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Afterwards, we headed to Barley + Vine, a local restaurant not far from the neighborhood that I grew up in! This was our first time visiting this restaurant and we loved the atmosphere and menu -- we will definitely be back the next time that we're in town. 

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We had some time to kill before heading to the concert, so we decided to drive around to look at Christmas lights while listening to the holiday station on the radio.

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Some of the neighborhoods went all out -- it was so fun to check out their seasonal decor! 

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Upon arriving to the concert, we grabbed some coffee and a cookie to enjoy before heading in to find our seats. I convinced Andy to let me open one of my Christmas gifts early so that I could use this new little clutch that evening. It will also come in handy for the holiday party and Nutcracker event that we have towards the end of this week! 

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This was our first time attending this concert and we were blown away by how good it was! This just might have to be a new tradition for us each Christmas! 

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There was a full orchestra, Christmas choir, children's choir, aerialists, gymnasts, dancers, and even ice skaters! The show flew by and we were fully enthralled by every performance! 

Do you have any holiday events on the calendar?
Do you enjoy driving around to look at Christmas lights?

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Christmas Gift Guide

I'm linking up with two of my favorite bloggers, Sarah and Victoria, for their "The Most Wonderful Time of the Year" linkup! Today's topic is Holiday Entertaining Tips, which is being hosted by Erica! 

I love shopping, finding, and wrapping gifts for others -- I think I enjoy the challenge of trying to find a really good gift for someone. Below are some of my favorite items that I think would be great gifts for your girlfriends! 

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These cozy slippers are so comfy, cute, and warm! I wear them around the house constantly from October - March.

This beanie is perfect for chilly commutes!

You can never go wrong with a Starbucks / coffee shop gift card -- pair this with a cute mug or tumbler! 

These Hello Crush Travel Jars are so great for traveling or even just tossing into your gym bag! I fill mine with my favorite pomade to keep in my bag and in my desk drawer in case that pesky winter static sneaks up on me! 

This is my favorite shade of nail polish -- it acts as a neutral but the pop of light pink is so pretty!

Frasier Fir is the best Christmas candle -- even their tiny ones will fill up an entire room with that amazing Christmas tree scent.

Kendra Scott earrings literally go with everything and add such a pretty touch to any outfit.

This book is one of my favorites -- it's filled with so many great reminders as we strive to live our best life.

Camp socks are my winter staple for under my boots -- they feel like little sweaters on my feet! 

Kate Spade Rise and Shine Studs are perfect for an everyday touch of glam.

This white chocolate peppermint tea tastes like Christmas in a cup.

Holiday Entertaining Tips

I'm linking up with two of my favorite bloggers, Sarah and Victoria, for their "The Most Wonderful Time of the Year" linkup! Today's topic is Holiday Entertaining Tips, which is being hosted by Catherine! 

I'm getting so excited to move into our new house not only to have more space, but also to be able to entertain! Entertaining / hosting is something that I've always loved -- probably because my mom is such a great hostess and I've learned from her over the years. We've hosted a few holidays in the past and below are some of my top holiday entertaining tips!

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1. Don't Make Everything
Not everything has to be homemade -- ask guests to bring an appetizer or dessert, utilize pre-made dips or breads from your local grocery. This will save you time and sanity.

2. Serve a Low-Maintenance Menu
There's nothing worse than trying to talk to a guest while mentally worrying about something in the oven. I like to get the cooked dishes done ahead of time and utilize the crockpot for keeping things (like taco meat) warm for guests. I also love serving snacky foods that are easy to replenish and don't require constant heat -- such a cheese trays, chips and guac, and a dessert platter.

3. Create a Cozy Atmosphere
I love to light candles, diffuse essential oils, utilize lamps instead of overhead lightning, and have a holiday playlist in the background. Setting the mood helps guests relax and have a great time.

4. Take Care of Yourself
A lot of times, if we're hosting a holiday, I like to wake up early and get a few things done, then hit the gym, shower and get ready, and then do the final touches. There's just something about a mental / physical break before having guests over that helps me so much! 

5. Say Yes to Help
It's so easy to say no to guests that offer to help with dishes / cleanup. However, do you really want to be scrubbing dishes at 11pm after the party? I sure don't. I always accept offers of help when it comes to cleanup -- many hands make light work! 

Do you have any holiday parties on the calendar?
What's your best advice for holiday entertaining?

My Christmas Wish List

I'm linking up with two of my favorite bloggers, Sarah and Victoria, for their "The Most Wonderful Time of the Year" linkup! Today's topic is Christmas Wish List, which is being hosted by one of my other favorite bloggers! 

As I've mentioned before, I keep a running wishlist year round -- Andy uses this as a guide for purchasing gifts, but I also use it for myself whenever I find myself wanting to purchase a little something for myself! Here's a look at what's on my wishlist right now:

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This acrylic nail polish organizer would be perfect for corralling all of my nail polish. 

I have a little bit of a walk to the office each morning, and a cozy hat helps keep my ears warm -- I have a little white one, and larger one, but this black one would be the perfect in-between hat.

This Vineyard Vines quilted pullover is the perfect layer to pull on with jeans and a tee on a Saturday.

Andy got me these Kate Spade diamond studs in light pink for Valentine's Day and I'd love to add the crystal clear pair to my collection for everyday wear.

A new popcorn popper is at the top of my list since our other one is such a pain to clean! 

This little clutch would be such a great date-night accessory for when I just want to bring my ID, phone, and a lipgloss.

I'd love to use an Apple watch to track my activity levels at the gym and while running the trails.

I've got my eye on this Madewell tote as an everyday bag for work -- I just need something to carry my lunch, wallet, and keys each morning.

I've heard great things about this cuticle product and I'd love to try it out as part of my at-home manicure routine.

I have these pajama pants in two other colors and they are my very favorite -- I'd love to add this Christmas-y pair to my collection! 

This illustrated version of my favorite movie looks so cute and reading it is a tradition I'd love to start when we have kids! 

What's on your Christmas wish list this year?
Do you like to choose your gifts or be surprised?