Friday Favorites


Happy Friday everyone!

It just hit me the other day that it’s nearly February. As in the month of Valentine’s Day. As in the month before I start seriously thinking that Spring is right around the corner (and am inevitably reminded by snow storm after snow storm for the next three months that it’s definitely not right around the corner.) As in the month my baby turns six months old!

I am so behind the times – I just took Lincoln’s 5 month pictures this week! (Side note, I want to eat my child. Should I be worried?)


Anyway, we’ve got an uneventful last weekend in January on the horizon, thank goodness. I foresee furniture shopping (we backed out of the dining room table purchase – long, tortuous story that I can’t even relive,) brunch at a cute bakery in town that has the best almond milk lattes, and perhaps hitting the mall in our future. Fun!

Wherever you are, and whatever you do, have a wonderful weekend and in the meantime please enjoy my favorite finds from around the web and beyond in this week’s Friday Favorites!

Click on the light blue links to be taken to the original source!

Favorite must-have: Simple Chocolate Birthday Cake with Whipped Chocolate Buttercream. I have never wished to turn another year older until this very moment. I NEED this cake in my life!!


Favorite hack: IKEA Hack Farmhouse Table. I would be all over this stunning IKEA hack farmhouse table if it fit in my dining room. It’s fabulously shabby chic, has the bench seat I’m after, and is about $2,000 less than the Pottery Barn lookalike I’ve been eyeing!


Favorite snack: The Laughing Cow® Light Queso Fresco & Chipotle Cheese Wedges + fresh apple slices. I am thrilled to announce that I have partnered with The Laughing Cow in 2014 to share new products, healthy living tips, snack ideas, giveaways, and more!

I’ve used The Laughing Cow cheese wedges in recipes like Sun-Dried Tomato & Basil Stuffed Chicken and Lighter Buffalo Chicken Mac and Cheese in the past, but they’re also great to pair with healthy snacks like fresh apple slices. The smoky flavor of the Light Queso Fresco & Chipotle cheese wedge is divine with a sweet and crunchy apple. TRY IT. New favorite flavor combo!


Favorite crunch: Cool Ranch Roasted Chickpeas. Have you ever had roasted chickpeas? They’re FABULOUS. Beyond crunchy – like homemade corn nuts! I can’t wait to give this Cool Ranch-flavored variety a try.


Favorite fashion: Meeting Point Dress. Wouldn’t this dress be adorable for a summer wedding?


Favorite bite: Buffalo Quinoa Bites. Perrrrfect for the Super Bowl. Cannot wait to make these. Bet they freeze well, too.


Favorite slurp: Ski Soup with Italian Sausage. A big bowl of ski soup is the perfect remedy for the sub zero temps we’ve been rocking this week. Seriously, it is so freaking cold. A hearty soup is just what I need to warm up with!


Favorite accent: Leather Studded Typesetter Plaque. Isn’t this smart looking? Would look awesome on the picture ledge above our big couch that we’re slowly styling.


Favorite upgrade: Garlicky & Cheesy Crispy Potato Skins. Who needs regular potato skins when you can have garlicky & cheesy crispy potato skins?! Oo la la!


Favorite sip: Winter Bourbon Smash. I had a cranberry whiskey smash at a restaurant a few months ago and it was absolutely divine. Love this twist on the recipe!

Favorite spot: Southern Screened in Porch. One thing Ben and I want to do in the future is build a screened in porch onto the back of our house. Doesn’t this look like the perfect spot to relax and sip coffee?


Favorite homemade: Raspberry Jam Crostata. This elegant yet easy pastry looks like a delicious, homemade poptart. ‘Nuf said!


Favorite fake-out: Eggplant Parmesan Sliders. “Chicken” parmesan sandwiches, made with eggplant rounds. Brilliant! I started digging eggplant after Ben made it a bunch of times during the last month of my pregnancy (FYI – the old wives tale did not work!) It’s creamy yet meaty, and takes on flavors really well. Can’t wait to make these.


Favorite find: Corso Como Sussex Boots. I’ve been looking for black boots that don’t look like serial killer boots for years, and think these might be it. So sleek! (Thanks to Julie for helping me find them!)


Favorite splurge: Boozy Brownies with Salted Caramel Rum Sauce. Chocolate + Booze + Salted Caramel? YES! Look how dense and fudgy!


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I am an official spokesperson for The Laughing Cow® in 2014. While I receive compensation for participation as a brand advocate, opinions are my own.


  1. Jeanie 01.24.2014

    I wanted the fitbit so badly for Christmas but it wasn’t to be. Hoping I win one!

  2. Losing Lindy 01.24.2014

    I have been eyeing a fitbit for some time, everything crossed that I am the lucky one ;)

  3. Abi@AbsofSteel 01.24.2014

    oh geez, that cake…. I can just imagine how chocolatety and moist it would taste

  4. The buffalo quinoa bites, the boots, the potato skins, the BOOZE BROWNIES….Want all the Friday favorites!

  5. Carrie 01.24.2014

    I had James and James Capenters build my dining room table. They are in Arkansas but plan trips around the US where they drop off the table. They build exactly to your specs, and use real wood. I didn’t know a thing about them, and just went on faith. My table is gorgeous, fits my place perfectly, and is a great quality. I was looking at a Pottery Barn table as well. The table from James and James is actually better quality but less expensive in price. You should check them out. I’m not related, earn zero commission, just a happy customer.

    • Michelle 01.24.2014

      Carrie you make a great point, I hadn’t thought of having one made. I even a local Amish community would be a good idea.

  6. Debtgirl 01.24.2014

    Lincoln is getting cuter and cuter! Did not think that possible. Love the screened in porch. Have a great weekend!

  7. Rachel 01.24.2014

    Lincoln is turning into such a handsome little man! Thanks for the giveaway Kristin!

  8. Mallory 01.24.2014

    Unbelievable how fast time flies. You’re little guy is so precious. My baby turns 1 in 4 days. Waaahhhh! BTW, I want that screened in porch so bad!!!

  9. Chicago Jogger 01.24.2014

    Ooh, everything looks awesome in the list this week. I am loving roasted chickpeas lately too – the other night I roasted a pan with lemon zest, salt, pepper, and a bit of lemon juice. Divine!! Have a great weekend!

  10. I was just looking into the Fitbit Force! I love all of the awesome features. I’m sure it really helps stay accountable and stay on track with fitness goals. And omg, that chocolate cake…..

  11. Meredith 01.24.2014

    Lincoln is so precious! I totally know what you mean about the serial killer thing with black boots!!! I haven’t owned a pair in years because I can’t find a pair that I like. I default to multiple pairs of brown boots….but i like these too!

  12. Tough to find black boots that aren’t something Julia Roberts would wear in Pretty Woman – the ones you posted are a good find!

    Enjoy your weekend :)

  13. Elizabeth P. 01.24.2014

    Mmm I’ve been wanting to try those quinoa buffalo bites too… they look tasty! and yes, totally normal to want to eat your little guy. Mine just turned two and I still want to eat his cheeks!

  14. I love Laughing Cow Cheese and your recipes, so i can’t wait to try out your recipes in the future!
    I love pairing my cheese with apples!
    Loving the dress as well!

  15. Mona 01.24.2014

    Love the boots! My tall black boots are a few years old and I’ve been looking for a replacement.
    Awesome giveaway too!

  16. Monica 01.24.2014

    Thanks so much for featuring our IKEA hack Farmhouse Table! We love how it turned out and how inexpensive it was! You can actually make any rectangle table into a farmhouse table, just keep your eyes open for one that’s the right size and build the top. It’s simple and makes such a huge difference. Thanks again for the feature- you made my weekend!

  17. Andrea R. 01.24.2014

    OMG!!! I am tripping over the brownies!!!! You must re-create and post it!!!

  18. So stinkin’ adorable! What a cutie. :)

    Thanks for sharing that dress. Love it!

  19. jen 01.24.2014

    OMG I love the little feathers he has going on! Mine had his around 6 months old and his hair is longer now and laying more flat…I’m so sad his feathers are nearly gone.

  20. Tieghan 01.24.2014

    Oh man, I am so pumped you are loving my cake! Wishing I could send you a few slices!! And the buffalo quinoa balls? You have to make those, they are incredible!! That is actually an adaption of my recipe, so I know just how crazy good they are. I have a feeling they are so your thing!

    Thanks for including me this week and have a great weekend!

  21. Jessica 01.24.2014

    Great Giveaway, I think the FitBit Force would be just the fitness motivation I need to get me over the feb slump!

  22. Becky 01.24.2014

    I’d be worried if you DIDN’T want to eat your child ;) Lincoln is SO adorable and looks like a happy, content baby!

  23. Kerr 01.24.2014

    I love that dress! !

  24. Claire @ Bloom. 01.24.2014

    Oh. My. Goodness. Lincoln is so big! What a cutie! Happy Friday!

  25. I have been eying the FitBit for awhile, but I keep going back and forth between that and the Jawbone! Ahh what a great giveaway!
    oh and those boozy brownies. Mouthwatering.
    Brownies & a FitBit…thats what I care most about? Life’s about balance, right? ;)
    P.S. Your little boy is absolutely adorable! It goes WAY to fast!

  26. Ali 01.24.2014

    I want to eat my child too… I hope that’s nothing to worry about!

  27. Trisha 01.24.2014

    I am in that same exact boat with the black boots, why are they all so mean looking?!

  28. Dee 01.24.2014

    Yay for Friday Favorites! And a bourbon drink to boot! This Kentucky girl loves it.

  29. Liz N. 01.24.2014

    Hi Kristin! I just had to ask you about the FitBit Force’s wristband. I’ve read so many negative comments on recently about the brand being difficult to snap on, not snapping properly and how it has the tendency to come off without the person knowing. Have you encountered any of these issues at all? BTW, you are in big trouble when Lincoln grows up…how many girls will be showing up at the house or hiding notes in his backpack?! What a handsome little guy!

    • Kristin 01.24.2014

      I’ve been wearing mine for about a week and haven’t had any issues!

    • sandy 01.24.2014

      I have the Fit Bit Force and I don’t know anyone who is happy with the band. EVERYONE on the discussion board complains about the band and how easy it can fall off your wrist and everyone has contacted the company. Some have even lost it (FitBit will replace with receipt). It’s ridiculous. Someone suggested purchasing these O-rings at Home Depot (rubber circle used for plumbing or something). This is the only thing that holds the band on just in case the two prongs aren’t properly pushed into the holes.. and believe me, my thumb is sore from trying to push those prongs in. Very bad design flaw but absolutely LOVE what the watch does.

  30. 1) corso como are the most comfortable shoes in the world.
    2) cheese and apples 4EVA.
    3) i really want those buffalo bites. now.
    also, as an aside, not weird you want to eat your child. i don’t blame you one bit!

  31. Amber 01.24.2014

    I have those boots – I got them at Von Maur. I LOVE them, I’ve worn them almost every day this winter.

    • Kristin 01.24.2014

      Ooo, good to know – I’ll have to check them out in person this weekend!

  32. Jodi 01.24.2014

    He is adorable, I can see why you want to eat him :)
    So many awesome things in this post…especially that cake and that soup! It’s so cold here, I could go for a huge bowl!

  33. Claire 01.24.2014

    Would you mind sharing what place has the best almond milk lattes? I would love to check out a new place, and lattes are my favorite!

  34. Hillary 01.24.2014

    Thank you for always making your giveaways so easy to enter :) There are times when I feel like the hoops to jump through are endless! A small thing, but so appreciated. Love seeing Friday Favorites!

  35. Sasha 01.24.2014

    Wow! Thank you so much for the share on the brownies! You’re an inspiring blogger and it’s a huge honor. :) From one Iowa girl to another.. thank you and have a wonderful weekend!

  36. Anna 01.24.2014

    I don’t know why everyone has such a problem finding black boots, I’ve got a few pairs of cute ones and have found a few more that are on my wishlist. It’s really no harder than finding brown boots, which I actually find much hard because they can look too cowboyish for my tastes.

  37. Dana 01.24.2014

    Thanks for the mention, Kristin! Lovely giveaway too! And YO BABY is DA CUTEST.

  38. Francine 01.24.2014

    That table…. I want it. And yes, I’ve had similar feelings about my baby. :)

  39. Jessie 01.24.2014

    I had to laugh at your comment about the eggplant. I also tried to induce labor by eating TONS of it! Glad I’m not the only one! I also pinned the cool ranch roasted chickpeas this morning, so now I’m going to HAVE to try them!

  40. I gave my husband a FitBix Flex for Christmas and he loves it and of course now I want one too.

    I pinned Teigan’s chocolate cake earlier in the week as well. It reminds me of a cake we used to get for my mom’s birthday from a local diner in Philadelphia.

  41. Jill 01.24.2014

    I am drooling so hard over those Boozy Brownies!!!! I’ve been hearing good things about the Fitbit. I would LOVE to try one out!

  42. I want all the things in this favorites post, but especially that chocolate cake and those brownies! Clearly I’ve got chocolate on the brain.

  43. Urban Wife 01.24.2014

    Muahaha, right there with ya on eating my child because he’s just so darn adorable so I don’t blame you one bit because Lincoln is precious! ;)

  44. Maureen 01.24.2014

    Great give-away! Thanks.
    Love your Friday favorites! Thank you for wonderful recipes.

  45. Jennifer 01.24.2014

    I have been wanting one of these!

  46. Betsy 01.24.2014

    I never would have thought to use the queso fresco Laughing Cow with apples, I usually use the swiss, but I’ll have to try it. You always make my week when you do your Friday favorites posts!

  47. Andrea 01.24.2014

    What a CUTE little guy!

  48. Maria W 01.24.2014

    Wonderful Friday posts! Thanks for a great give-away, too!

  49. Jean 01.24.2014

    Lincoln sure is a cutie pie!!! But I am really wondering what “serial killer black boots” look like! Hahaha I actually just bought me first pair ever and now I’m wondering if I look like a serial killer to people! LOL!!!

  50. kristen 01.24.2014

    Lincoln is growing into such a little handsome man! Chickpeas and eggplant recipes will be tried very soon :)

    I’ve heard the Fit Bit is fantastic to keep you on track for your goal. As my Zumba classes may be ending and I’m starting a new job where I walk to work, I’d love to win!

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