Friday Favorites


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 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 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

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!

View Past Friday Favorites >

Have an awesome weekend, everyone!

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  1. What a great line up of favorite things! Love it. Thanks for including my copycat recipe for Starbucks Cranberry Bliss Bars! They are pretty yummy.

  2. 1) That wine cooler is amazing- must have.
    2) That wedding pic is so beautiful!
    3) The pic of Austria has me longing for European streets again.. *sigh


  3. Megan 10.26.2012

    Totally not a cat person but vampire kitty is so cute! Would love to check out Gift Mart on Saturday the 17th!

  4. Hah it totally is a Midwest thing to talk about the weather. I live in FL now and people think I’m weird when I bring it up.

  5. Holly 10.26.2012

    This might be one of my favorite Friday Favorites! So many awesome things!
    My mom and I hang out every Saturday, so I would looove to be able to take her (and probably drag my dad along) to the Gift Mart!

  6. Lisa in Fort Worth 10.26.2012

    Love the comment about the Midwest instincts!! It cracked me up this morning. When my Dad calls thats all he ever talks about is the weather! It’s so funny. My kids call me to tell me their grandfather calls to tell them the weather up North too! We love it!

  7. Melissa 10.26.2012

    You have such great taste bc I lOVE that gap vest! Also, that wine cooler is amazing! I’ve never seen anything like that and definitely a must have… i’m going to put that on my christmas list!

  8. Jill 10.26.2012

    Would love to check out Gift Mart on Saturday the 17th!

  9. Megan G 10.26.2012

    I would love opening night tickets to Gift Mart!

  10. Emily 10.26.2012

    Love the pic of Salzburg…was there a few years ago and it is the most beautiful city!!!

  11. Sarah H.P. 10.26.2012

    I’d love to attend on Saturday the 17th! I’m in Dubuque, Iowa but would definitely drive to Des Moines for the weekend!

  12. Melinda 10.26.2012

    I would love to take my Mom to Gift Mart on Thursday night. What a fun treat – we have missed the last couple of years.

  13. Thanks for the sweet link! xo

  14. i went to salzburg on a trip to germany & austria a few summers ago with my mom. that pic is gorgeous and it’s even more amazing in real life so you MUST go. anyone, everyone. love it!!

  15. I’d love gift mart tickets! I could sooo use a girls night. :) I’d like to go Friday night. Here’s to hoping!

  16. kimi 10.26.2012

    I’ve been so Salzburg a few times. It’s even more beautiful than pictures can show. Austria is amazing. Salzburg is home to an amazing side-of-mountain Stiegl bier garden. I want to live there. You must go!

  17. Tammie Grey 10.26.2012

    drooled at the tootsie rolls

  18. EMILY 10.26.2012

    How freakin’ fab is that wine cooler!? I feel like I would become more of a wine connesouir if I had one! And it doesn’t seem like it goes to waste as fast?

    I would like to win tickets for the night of the 16th! My college friend from ENGLAND is flying in on the 15th and staying in IOWA until th 25th. This would be a fun night out welcoming him back to the states!

    • EMILY 10.26.2012

      connoisseur* I spelled that completely wrong

  19. Kasey 10.26.2012

    I would love to go on Sat. 11/17. I have never been to it before. It sounds fun!
    Thank you :)

  20. Sarah 10.26.2012

    I am so excited for the holidays. I love baking with cranberries and cranberry sauce is my favorite part of Thanksgiving.

  21. Rose Hake 10.26.2012

    What a great start on holiday shopping…I’ve never been to this but would love to go!

  22. Courtney F 10.26.2012

    Vest=Super cute!
    Wedding pic=amazing
    Sweet potato with maple streusel=outta this world looking!!
    Have a great weekend!

  23. How ironic! I just sent in some paperwork yesterday to start becoming a member of JL Des Moines. Would love to win this for Sat 17th.

    I’m gonna brave the cold for our last DTFM (tear) tomorrow morning, too. *And* pop outta bed super early to beat the Komen crowd. It’s gonna be crazy down there!

  24. Rachel Pirkl 10.26.2012

    I’ve been thinking Christmas for weeks! (ok…to be honest, since last Christmas was over:)) I’d love to go to Gift Mart Thursday the 15th!

  25. Emily R 10.26.2012

    Local Des Moines girl here! I would love to attend Saturday 17th! Also, why is it that we love talking weather in the Midwest? That’s my go-to small talk. haha

  26. Betsi 10.26.2012

    I would love to go to Gift Mart! Any of the days work great!

    PS – I am now obsessing over the vest!

  27. Ha they have a wine station at a new FANCY grocery store by my house (for self-service by the glass), as well as wine glass holders in all the carts!

  28. Brandi Nelson 10.26.2012

    Woohoo! Love Gift Mart – any day would be great!

    And after reading this blog I am very, very hungry…

  29. Lexi 10.26.2012

    Gift Mart sounds great! I’d love to go on the 16th!

  30. Robyn 10.26.2012

    WOW! I loved every single link in this post! My faves though were the WineStation (how awesome!) and that Butternut Bliss Fall Salad, looks delicious!

  31. LaurenO 10.26.2012

    Salzburg is AMAZING! We went during Oktoberfest and it was simply a blast. The views no matter where you are are just stunning. You see why fairy tales were set in that area and the surrounding woods. A must-visit for any traveler!

  32. Michelle H. 10.26.2012

    The Gift Mart would be perfect to take my Mother-in-Law to. She has a gift shop near Waterloo and loves this kind of stuff! Saturday the 17th would be a fun day to do this!!

  33. Lindsay 10.26.2012

    This sounds perfect! I would love to go on Saturday 11/17! I think I could get all my shopping done in one stop! :)

  34. Emily 10.26.2012

    I would go on the 17th!

  35. Yvonne G. 10.26.2012

    You can take the girl out of the Midwest, but you can’t take the Midwest out of the girl… mom and I talk weather all the time (she’s in Arizona, I’m experiencing a new part of the Midwest in North Dakota)!

    Love the picture of the Getreide Gasse! I spent a sememster abroad in Salzburg and loved every second of it!

  36. Stephanie S. 10.26.2012

    I love all of these recipes. I’m going to have to make them all at some point. My co-workers love that I read your blog every day, because they get to taste all of the goodies!

    I would love to attend the Gift Mart. I’d love tickets for Friday, November 16th!

  37. Meredith 10.26.2012

    I’d love to attend Friday the 16th!

  38. Donna MacNeir 10.26.2012

    Love your Friday favs and would love to attend Friday the 16th after work!

  39. Nicole W. 10.26.2012

    I love your Friday Favs. I would attend on Saturday the 17th

  40. Stephanie 10.26.2012

    I will be out of the country during the week, so I’d love to go on Saturday! I love the Gift Mart. The first time I ever went was because of your talking about it and totally loved it!

  41. Julie 10.26.2012

    Sat. the 17th is my b-day. Attending Gift Mart sounds like a fun way to spend the day! :)

  42. VMeeink 10.26.2012

    Saturday the 17th is my birthday, I’d love to spend it at GiftMart. Love your blog, I just found it and am obsessed!

  43. Jv 10.26.2012

    Friday the 16ty would be fantastic! I’m sure ill go either way :)

  44. Christa Marchant 10.26.2012

    I would love to go to the gift mart on Thursday! I’ve never been opening night…I usually go on the weekend. Love you Friday favorites! I look forward to it each week! :)

  45. Cookies and Cream Popcorn…um, yes please!

    Midwesterners talking about the weather? No way! ;) It is one of our favorite past-times!

  46. Meghan 10.26.2012

    I’d love a pair of tickets for Saturday, November 17th. My mom’s birthday is earlier that week and I know this is something she would LOVE to do!

  47. Kristin 10.26.2012

    I would love to go to the Gift Mart this year on Friday or Saturday. It has always looked like a great event but I’ve never been able to make it!

  48. Dawn Mather 10.26.2012

    I would make plans to attend any of those days if I could win a pair of tickets. Imagine all the holiday shopping I could do for myself (and others, of course)!

  49. Julie 10.26.2012

    Ha – checking the weather is as routine as brushing one’s teeth around here. Wearing shorts just days ago and now hat/gloves. Completely normal. :)

    I’ve never attended the Gift Mart, but I’m intrigued. I adore boutique sales for the love of getting introduced to an entirely new group of unique retailers. Yeah – mark me down as interested in Fri or Sat tickets. Thanks!

  50. Denise Gibbs 10.26.2012

    I would like to attend the Des Moines Junior League event on Saturday, November 17th, please! LOVE your Friday favorites!

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