Sugar Free and Dairy Free Chocolate Chip Cookies

Sugar Free and Dairy Free Chocolate Chip Cookies

I have recently kicked sugar and most dairy products from my diet, but needed something to quench my cravings. I’m not a sweets person to begin with but it’s funny the minute you eliminate something from your diet, the cravings all of a sudden start. I looked up a few different recipes and narrowed it down to these ingredients. These cookies came out so good! I personally think they taste like the Chips Ahoy Chewy cookies, but not as sweet of course (which I kind of like). 

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Homemade Artisan Bread

Homemade Artisan Bread

Processed bread is always one of those foods that is always on the top of those “what never to eat” list.  Processed bread is loaded with preservative that are so difficult for your body to digest which then turn into fat.  On top of all that, personally I have never really liked the taste of store bought bread.  I've been making my own for a while now. I've tried several different recipes and techniques and this one is by far the easiest and the best tasting. Give it a try! I promise, you can't mess it up.

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Homemade Pesto

Homemade Pesto

Pesto is one of my secret ingredients to fix a boring meal.  You know those simple weeknight dishes that you’re kind of bored of but are easy quick meals so you just make it and force it down.  I feel like even a little goes a long way, such as adding a teaspoon in a bowl of some chicken noodle soup or using is as a base for your pizza.  I love to toss it in sautéed potatoes and adding some to pasta marinara.  

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Pineapple Vase

Pineapple Vase

Ok! How adorable is this pineapple vase?  I mean I think pineapples in general as so cute (and I they always remind me of Sprongebob), but add some really pretty flowers into the mix and my mind is blown lol.  I love when I see people’s vacation pictures of them on a beach with a straw in a pineapple and slurping a fruity cocktail, it just makes perfect sense.  So, I thought why not up-cycle the pineapple in other ways.  This is great for parties (like a luau) or even just to have around the house after cutting up the fruit.

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DIY Tassel Garland

DIY Tassel Garland

Haven’t you been seeing these cute tassel garlands all over Pinterest for like ever now? I thought I would take a stab at making my own.  I like the idea of hanging one over my bar cart when having a few people over for cocktails.  It’s pretty simple but does take a lot of time.  So if you would prefer to buy one I found some cute ones over at Oriental Trading.  But maybe you want a certain color palette and want to create your own, here is a little tutorial to create your own.

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Watercolor Name Cards

Watercolor Name Cards

I’m all about the little details when it comes to planning an event. I always like to put my own personal touch at my table.  These watercolor name cards are so easy and you can even get the kids to help in.  I think there is something so therapeutic about painting, especially with watercolors.  If name cards are not your thing you could always turn them into gift tags or thank you cards.

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Roasted Red Pepper Veggeti

Roasted Red Pepper Veggeti

It’s time to put those New Year’s resolutions into action.  Eating healthy and getting shape is my yearly struggle, but this year I am totally motivated.  I got a Fitbit for Christmas and I’m totally obsessed.  It’s not something that was on my wishlist, but I’m so glad I have it now.  So now that I am up and moving, it’s so important to me to pull through with healthy meals. 

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NYE Ready!

NYE Ready!

Are you ready for New Year's Eve? It's one of my favorite holidays. I love fresh starts and always have a list of resolutions at the beginning of the year, whether I follow through all year is another story though lol.  This year I must say I dropped the ball on committing to an awesome countdown event, but whatever I end up doing I will definitely throw some sparkle on and have a glass of champagne in hand.

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Style Up the Holidays

Style Up the Holidays

There is something in the air this holiday season; I'm totally bursting with Christmas spirit.  I’ve been shopping, baking, and decorating like crazy.  I was lucky enough to partner with Nordstrom to style and plan all my holiday party outfits.  I’m love shopping through TopShop, BP and all the other great brands all under one roof.  Now, I’m a girl who is always on a budget and I was able to find some really great deals.  No one item is over $100! All styles are so versatile; they are perfect for hopping around to all those holiday parties.

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The Classic Tee

The Classic Tee

One of the most classic pieces of clothing is the basic white tee.  You can dress it up or dress it down; it never goes out of style.  I love to pair it with a leather jacket and pumps.  It just always makes me feel a little edgy and boosts my confidence.  This is a look I contributed to the FYI Network. They have a new series called Style Unzipped that goes on every Monday at 10/9c. On the show they discuss the history of iconic fashion pieces. Stay tuned for the episode on the T-shirt.

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Bar Cart Essentials

Bar Cart Essentials

I’ve had bar cart envy for a while now, it’s kind of hard to ignore all the beautifully styled and well stocked bar carts out there on Pinterest.  I love mixing up cocktails for friends when they come over and it always gets a bit messy when not everything is in one spot.  I recently rearranged my office and created the perfect spot for a bar cart which gives me something nice to look at, although it can be a little distracting when Friday afternoon rolls around.  

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Summer Salad with Strawberry Vinaigrette

Summer Salad with Strawberry Vinaigrette

This salad is perfect for any summer dinner.  It’s so light and refreshing; you won’t feel bad going back for seconds or thirds. The salad is so easy.  It’s really all about the strawberry vinaigrette that brings it all together.  You could top your salad with any fruit you’d like but I would recommend having a few strawberries on it.  I also like a little crunch to my salads so I added sliced almond, but you could also substitute them for other types of nuts.  I think walnuts or sunflower seeds would pair nicely.   

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No Churn Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

No Churn Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

Okay, so I always get a weird look from people when I say, “I’m not a big ice cream person”.  I know, I know. There’s that look.  It’s not that I don’t like ice cream, I just don’t crave it all the time and it’s not something I can eat on a whim.  But, when I do crave it, It’s gooood… real good. There is nothing like a scoop of good ole fashioned vanilla ice cream.  

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A Little Sprucing Up

A Little Sprucing Up

I think every once in a while everyone needs a little change around the house.  I get the itch to change things up about every 2 months, and you can imagine that's not so nice to the wallet.  So I've learned to embrace the DIY revolution by using common objects that can be useful in other ways when I'm just over the previous use.  The artwork above my bed is something that I did because I've been searching for a really cool art piece and just haven't found one, so I was inspired by this print that I can't find anywhere anymore.  Also these wall sconces I made out of $4 wall brackets.  I saw this wall sconce that I was about to buy two of and a light bulb went off.  Just make it! I actually love the way it came out and I can always put up a self somewhere in the future.  Win-Win!

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