Friday Favorites


What’s up, buttercup? TGIF!

Got any fun weekend plans? Ben and I have a wedding to attend on Saturday (YES!) but will be laying relatively low for the most part. It feels strange to be doing anything outrageous considering what’s happening out east. I don’t know if that’s strange, but I think you know what I mean.

Thoughts and prayers to our friends out east, and fingers crossed for a speedy recovery. In the meantime, please zone out and enjoy some fun, frivolous finds from around the web in this week’s Friday Favorites!

Favorite read: Blackberry Winter by Sarah Jio. I have known Sarah for a couple years and was so excited to hear that she recently released her latest novel, Blackberry Winter. The book is written in one of my favorite styles – jumping back and forth between the past and present, intertwining two women’s lives in a fascinating story of history and mystery. Sarah is a fantastic writer and her stories feel incredibly vivid and real. I read this book in one night simply because I couldn’t go to sleep without knowing what happened to the characters! Oops!

Favorite help: American Red Cross Disaster Relief. As I mentioned, the devastation on the east coast caused by Hurricane Sandy continues to sicken and sadden me. Please consider donating to the American Red Cross’ disaster relief fund to help our friends in need, if you are able!

Favorite bite: No-Knead Pumpkin Rolls with Brown Sugar Glaze. Ohhhh dear. The sweet & squishy factor here is off the charts!

Favorite fashion: Michael Kors Double Wrap Chain Bracelet. I don’t think I’ve ever desired a piece of jewelry more than this double wrap bracelet. LOVE the buckle detail!

Favorite treat: Homemade Hostess Cupcakes. These are the cupcakes of my childhood! My Mom would stash one in my brother’s and my lunchboxes for a special treat every once and awhile when we were young. :)

Favorite pooch. I used to lay under my dog (Friski, the cockapoo) and look at her from this view. Too cute.

Favorite fall: Roasted Acorn Squash. I saw oven-ready kits of halved and hallowed acorn squash filled with butter, brown sugar, and spices sold with a major markup at the store the other day. Why pay more when you can easily make this yummy fall treat at home?

Favorite project: The Penny Project. How cool do these shiny, copper-looking letters look in this kitchen, which literally cost pennies to make?

Favorite slurp: Caprese Soup. A great twist on the classic tomato soup. Yummy.

Favorite place. I think 9 times out of 10, I’d pick a cozy mountain retreat over a beach vacation, preferably sipping soup of the sort above. Okay, maybe 8/10. Is that crazy?

Favorite feast: BBQ Pot Roast over Cheddar Ranch Grits. Ben saw this over-the-top feast over my shoulder as I was surfing the interwebs this week, and demanded that I include it in my Friday Faves. There was NO argument on my part. Holy cow!

Favorite wedding wear. I’m convinced there needs to be a new section in department stores – wedding guest wear. It is so hard to find cute/appropriate dresses for weddings – especially fall/winter weddings. This outfit is exactly what I’m looking for (and not finding!) for the wedding this weekend!

Favorite photo: Pumpkin Pie Pancakes. The recipe for these fluffy flap jacks looks scrumptious, but WOW, that PHOTO!

Favorite find: Pottery Barn Lookalikes. A whole blog dedicated to finding more affordable versions of Pottery Barn products. Awesome!

Favorite snack: Buffalo Pretzels. Don’t let the plain look of these pretzels fool you – what you can’t see is a yummy layer of buffalo-ranch flavor baked into the crunchy snacks. These would be perfect for a party.

Favorite workout: Your Best Butt. I’ve been really into butt workouts lately. Not actually doing them, per se, but collecting them anyways. Baby steps!

Favorite sip: Apple, Ginger, and Cranberry Cocktails. These sippers were created with the summer in mind, but the combo of flavors sounds like they’d be equally delish in the cooler months. Garnish with a cinnamon stick for some fall flare?

Favorite feature. A fire pit with openings around the bottom for increased airflow to the flames, AND for warming your feet. Genius!

Favorite indulge: Peanut Butter Cup Brownie Torte. All. The. Things.!! :)

Favorite local: Iowa’s Premier Beer, Food & Wine Expo. Just a reminder that I will be at the expo next Friday, November 9, from 6:15-7:15pm doing a food demo with a beer pairing expert. Samples and sips provided! Click here to purchase discounted tickets for the expo and wine/beer tasting area!

Check out past Friday Favorites >

Wishing you a fabulous weekend! :D

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  1. Thanks so much for including my Pumpkin Pie Pancakes! What great company to be in!

  2. I have a wedding coming up Thanksgiving weekend and I can’t find anything to wear either! Good luck to both of us!

  3. Jen 11.02.2012

    Sarah Jio is AMAZING! One of my favorite authors for sure!!!
    If you like that type of book, check out Erica Bauermeister as well. She has 2 books out so far.. The School of Essential Ingredients and Joy For Beginners. They follow different people and their stories always somehow converge in the end. She has a new book coming out early next year too!

  4. Courtney F 11.02.2012

    I wasn’t hungry for lunch UNTIL NOW! Hostess cupcakes were my FAVORITE snack as a kid. I am pretty sure that contributed to some extra pounds as a teenager! But I want to go get one now haha!
    And the pankcakes and brownie torte sin! WOW!
    Have a great weekend!

  5. hensk 11.02.2012

    Just wanted to tell you that I always look forward to your Friday Favorites! Thanks!!

  6. I love the book cover of Blackberry Winter. And thanks for including the site on Pottery Barn knockoffs. This may just be the best thing I’ll see all day.

    Have fun at the wedding!

  7. Tiffany Colvert 11.02.2012

    Love everything here- but that pup melts my heart!

  8. SingleMama 11.02.2012

    I should not look at this right before lunch, now I am starving!

  9. Karen Thompson 11.02.2012

    First – I LOVE you blog – as an “older follower” – I must say you are a “young woman after my heart” – our cooking styles are such matches – but after seeing you “wedding guest attire” – I know we are clones!! Did you see Taylor Swifts – red dot dress on CMA last night? THe red sheer one during the song? You would like it!

    • Iowa Girl Eats 11.03.2012

      Ooo I didn’t – but I do love her style. I will have to check it out!

  10. Barbara 11.02.2012

    I’d totally pick a mountain vacay over a beach one any day! Especially in the winter – nothing like a cosy fire in a winter mountain cabin :)

    I would definitely burn my toes in that fire pit ! Have a great weekend!

  11. Tracy 11.02.2012

    LOOOVE Friday Favorites!!

    And cozy mountain retreat vs beach vacation? You are crazy! I’d flip those picks for sure. Give me warmth!

  12. I loved Sarah Jio’s other two novels and I can’t wait to pick this one up. I love roasted acorn squash and those pancakes look amazing. I never get tired of pumpkin anything!

  13. Meg 11.02.2012

    I’ve seen a very similar dress to the one you’re looking for at a boutique in West Des Moines called Mint L.A. Boutique. They’re in West Glen – here is the dress on their facebook page!/photo.php?fbid=428789297157694&set=a.428783250491632.86148.199960730040553&type=3&theater

    • Iowa Girl Eats 11.03.2012

      I was just thinking the other day – we need more specialty shops out of the mall! I will check them out!

  14. Melissa 11.02.2012

    I finished Blackberry Winter this week too and LOVED it! I’m a big fan of Sarah Jio! Did you notice that she had Bee and Emily from the Violets of March make an appearance? I thought that was so fun!

  15. Karin 11.02.2012

    I am so glad to hear that I am not the only person who would rather go vacation in the mountains than the beach. I will choose the mountains every day over the beach in any season!

  16. Margaret 11.02.2012

    When I saw the pot roast over grits I thought, “Wow. That looks very good…and VERY familiar.” Check it out:

  17. Lindsey 11.02.2012

    Those homemade Hostess cupcakes look amazing!!!

  18. Cher @ Weddicted 11.02.2012

    Loving everything that you chose this week! I would also pick a secluded mountain vacation most of the time! It’s much more romantic than a crowded beach :) AND, tha MK bracelet is on sale for $101.00.. rrreeealllly considering it!!

  19. Kari 11.02.2012

    I have made that BBQ pot roast! It is so super duper awesome. One of my favorite comfort meals. In fact earlier today I decided I am making it for Christmas Eve. Want to know the best part? It’s super easy!

  20. Bek @ Crave 11.02.2012

    OH my that Torte! Oh and yes that is crazy- I’d pick beach most of the time haha ;)

  21. Jen 11.02.2012

    Can’t wait to read blackberry winter, I’m in line at my library. She’s an amazing writer loved her other books. I might just break down and go buy it. Those pumpkin cinnamon rolls look so good, I love all things pumpkin!

  22. Nicole 11.02.2012

    I know exactly what you are talkng about!! I’m going to a wedding this Saturday too and had the hardest time finding a dress that I won’t freeze in!

  23. Yolanda 11.03.2012

    I enjoy your Friday Favorites so much that I think I’m going to start saving them to read on Wednesday so they can help get me through the week. THANK YOU!!!

  24. Ooo, acorn squash just screams fall. And talk about that caprese soup!

  25. That penny project looks pretty fabulous…as do those pancakes!!

  26. heather 11.03.2012

    greetings from(a safe, dry, and very blessed girl in)northeastern jersey! when our power goes back on-next week, in my county-i’m on that PB brownie torte like white on rice. <3 <3

  27. Brittney 11.04.2012

    Hopefully you found something for the wedding. I found some great fall dresses at Fab’rik aross from Ulta last weekend, if you still need any.

    • Iowa Girl Eats 11.05.2012

      I did – I got a skirt and blouse from Express. Whew! I will have to check out Fab’rik sometime, I’ve always been curious about it!

  28. Bess 11.05.2012

    Ahhh! I need that dress! Any idea where it’s from! I hate when people post on Pinterest and other websites and don’t link back! I’m dying here! Also, I basically live for your Friday Favorites posts. You have great taste!

  29. That cocktail totally sounds like fall to me!! I love cocktails with ginger ale!

  30. My favorite is the ‘eat’ sign! There are a lot of copper mines where I grew up, so I am always drawn to copper…

  31. Tommy 11.08.2012

    Alright, it must be official. Just heard a Hyvee Beer, Wine, and Food Expo “Featuring Iowa Girl Eats” on the radio (yes, I still listen to the radio at work, albeit sports talk…). It definitely sounds like a good time, but unfortunately I don’t we’ll be able to make it out there.

    Love the penny letters, BTW…Missy was obsessed with find a way to incorporate pennies into our house (back splash, table, etc)…this looks like a pretty easy alternative!

  32. […] currently reading on my Kindle. I’ve heard wonderful things about the author from various bloggers I follow, and am excited to see what the hype is […]

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