Friday Favorites + Local Giveaway!

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Happy Friday, all!

First things first, I need to announce the winner of the White Jacket Required book giveaway. Congrats to…

Chelsea: I would love to read this book :) My favorite comfort food is probably pasta with meat sauce and garlic bread…yummm!

Congrats, Chelsea! Email your mailing address to IowaGirlEats@gmail.com and we’ll get that right out to you. Thank you to everyone who entered, and do pick up a copy of White Jacket Required if you can, to support a fellow food blogger, and for a great read!

In other news, we went from a high of 83 earlier this week, to a predicted high of just 49 today. Brrr!! Seems like most of the country is experiencing some type of dramatic weather right now, from cold temps, snow, and rain, so wherever you are, try and stay warm, safe, and dry this weekend.

That was my Midwest instincts kicking in, btw. We love to talk weather. SO COOL. ;)

Anyways, my Mom and I are hoping to conquer the cold tomorrow and hit up the very last downtown Farmers’ Market of the season (sob!) then Ben and I have dinner plans with friends. Fun!  Today I am spending the day staying warm indoors working on a few freelance recipe projects – a couple involving cranberries.

The holidays are coming! The holidays are coming!

Alright, I need to go, clearly. I hope you have some plans in the works, but in the meantime, please enjoy my favorite finds from around the web and beyond in this week’s Friday Favorites!

Favorite bite: Cookies & Cream Popcorn. One of my best friends and I used to hoard Hershey’s Cookies & Cream mini chocolate bars in our lockers, which were right next to each other, freshman year of high school. It was all fun and games until the boys on either side of us discovered our locker combinations and stole our entire stash. ‘Twas a sad day indeed. I would keep this stuff under lock and KEY!

Favorite cozy: Fitted Puffer Vest. I saw a girl at the grocery store earlier this week with the cutest vest on – puffy but fitted, with a cute, faux-fur lined hood. Kinda like this one!

Favorite fall: Butternut Bliss Fall Salad. I can’t decide what I like best about this gorgeous, Autumnal salad – the sight of caramelized butternut squash, tofu, walnuts, and dried cranberries – or the cute name.

Favorite furball. I vant…to suck…the cuteness out of this spooky little kitten!

Favorite fashion: Bahari Necklace. This statement necklace is GORGEOUS. I have so many outfits this would totally make.

Favorite project: Gallery Wall. So much easier than trying to figure out different hanging patterns, using a level, nails, and lots of prayers that everything lines up.

Favorite redo: Starbuck’s Cranberry Bliss Bars. A copycat version of Starby’s Cranberry Bliss Bars – these babies look sinfully delish.

Favorite must-have: Winestation. MUST. HAVE. NOW. How freaking cool, right?!

Favorite save: Green Mountain Fair Trade Coffee. I received some Colombian Fair Trade Select coffee through my GreenMountain.com K-Cup Ambassador Program earlier this month, and it is hands down my favorite coffee I’ve ever had. Sooo smooth, and not too dark, nor too light. Bonus – it’s on sale right now (as is all GM’s Fair Trade Coffee,) and you can get an additional 10% off all Fair Trader products with code: GMCFTC8131 through November 5 on GreenMountainCoffee.com.

Favorite dinner: Hummus Crusted Chicken. I love how moist and juicy this hummus-topped chicken looks. It would be a great weeknight dinner, plus you can never have too many chicken recipes!

Favorite DIY: DIY Mercury Glass Lamps. Apparently similar-looking lamps sell for $200+ at Pottery Barn. HAHA NO THANKS. This tutorial gives a pretty ingenious way to get the look for a LOT less.

Favorite indulge: Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies with Sea Salt. So simple. So divine. So want dozens and dozens of them right now…

Favorite vantage point. I don’t think I’ve ever seen this super-cool wedding shot before. Ladies – keep this one in mind for any impending nuptials!

Favorite upgrade: Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes with Walnut Streusel. Oh dear me! Love this idea for a Thanksgiving side!

Favorite place: Salzburg, Austria. Can you imagine how beautiful this place must be around the holidays, with twinkling lights and a light dusting of snow?

Favorite homemade: Homemade Tootsie Rolls. Homemade tootsie rolls are all the rage this year, and I, for one, am totally on board. How fun!

Favorite local: Gift Mart Giveaway! Kickoff the holiday shopping season with free tickets to the Des Moines Junior League’s annual Gift Mart, November 15-17! This upscale shopping extravaganza features boutique shopping with over 70 unique retailers in one place, to make holiday shopping easy and fun. Proceeds from Gift Mart support JLDM sponsored community projects.

The JLDM is giving away 4 opening night tickets on Thursday, November 15, and 3 pairs of tickets to be used either Friday 11/16, or Saturday 11/17. To enter, leave a comment on this post (not by email or Facebook) telling me which day you’d like to attend, by this Sunday, October 28 at 12pm central. Good luck! 

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View Past Friday Favorites >

Have an awesome weekend, everyone!

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