Monday, August 31, 2015

Coffee Cake Muffins

Hello Monday. 

So if you follow me on Instagram, then you shouldn't be surprised that my first post of the week is a baked good. Saturday morning was a tad rainy here in Dallas, so I brewed me some coffee and curled back up with Paula Deen's Fall Baking magazine. It really was quite the spectacular morning. 

I saw these muffins and knew immediately that they were a must-bake. I am a sucker for muffins. I am a sucker for coffee cake. And I am a sucker for the cinnamon sugar smell that reminds me we are inching our way towards fall. 

I, via way of Paula Deen, give you the Coffee Cake Muffin. 

(PS I'm pretty proud of this picture. I think it's safe to say my foodie pictures are improving!)

Now, this is pure and classic coffee cake. There's nothing overly-complicated about it. It's the slightly sweet muffin batter mixed in with a cinnamon/brown sugar streusel. Don't get me wrong, each bite still makes you grunt with happiness, but I'm just saying - this version is a classic. 

What You'll Need:

for the batter:
2/3 cup of butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 1/4 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 cup sour cream 

for the streusel:
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
4 tbsp of butter 

What You'll Do

In one bowl, mix together all of the batter ingredients (I literally just dumped them all in a bowl and took the electric mixer to it). 

In another bowl, mix together the streusel flour, sugar, and cinnamon. Cut the butter into small 1/2 inch pieces, and then cut those pieces into cubes. Mix into cinnamon mixture with a pastry blender until clumpy. 

Katy Tip: I do not have a pastry blender, but I used an electric mixer attachment and it worked just fine. You just want clumps - the smaller you chop up the butter, the easier it will be to make clumps.

Line 18-count muffin tins with muffin cups. Spoon half of the batter into the bottom of the cups (filling each cup only halfway). Spoon half the streusel mixture on top of batter. Pour remaining batter onto streusel. Top with remaining steusel. 

Long story short, you're just layering the batter/streusel from the bottom up: batter, streusel, batter, streusel.  

Bake at 350 degrees for 18-20 minutes (or until it passes the clean knife test). 

Serve warm. With coffee. :)

I sliced a muffin in half to show you the streusel inside. I mean I know I'm biased, but I think this looks pretty dang delicious. 

Mondays are rough. They're just in need of a comfort food like this :)


Until next time,
Friday, August 28, 2015

Friday Favorites

Friday. We finally made it. 

Anyone else think it took its sweet little time getting here? I mean, goodness gracious. 

But alas, it's here. So let's party.

 Linking up with April and Erika

1. Steve Madden "Paigely" Pumps

All credit goes to my girl Melissa for these. She snapchatted them to me yesterday and then since the adorable heels disappeared in 7 seconds, I immediately texted for details. And y'all these puppies are on sale right now for $75! (Originally $100) I'm trying to keep true to my 'no shopping in August' pledge, but I might cave on these. Plus, if you round up it's already September, right? Close enough :)

They come in four different colors. I'm struggling between the burgundy (above) and the blush. Thoughts?? Click here for the goods. 

2. Blue Bell is RETURNING

And the first flavor is VANILLA!!! My Hershey's chocolate syrup will be OH so excited. It's missed its partner in crime. The good news is it returns to shelves on August 31. The bad news? The phase 1 implementation is NOT in Dallas. What is THAT?! I mean I seriously considered driving my little tail to Houston on Monday just for a half gallon. I think this is a really good reason for a personal day. I also really think I need (and deserve) this shirt

 3. Micro Mesh Bra Wash Bag

 So this may sound silly, but this $5 bra washing bag has been a game changer. I used to hate washing bras. I felt the need to hand wash and no one likes a hand wash. So on a whim, my sister and I ran into the Container Store after a date night and I bought one. Again - for $5. Best investment ever. You can load about 3 bras in the bag (well - I guess that depends on the size of the bras, but you get my drift!) and throw them into wash with your normal clothes. And they stay sturdy and in shape! I realize you all probably have been using these for years, but this is definitely a favorite for me.

4. Favorite Quote of the Week

......word. This needs no other explanations. Where are my females? You know it's true.

5. Always Cardigan - J.Crew Factory

Hooooookay. I'm obsessed with this cardigan. And it's $24. TWENTY-FOUR. I saw this on one of my Like to Know It girls, and immediately wanted it. Like really really badly. And it's my nautical navy and white! But I will say, I'm equally obsessed with the port ivory/white

I mean I don't know what to do. I love the navy and white....because I love navy and white, but since nautical was my summer wardrobe, that bottom one just says fall to me. I think I just talked myself into the port ivory. But I'm not sure. Maybe I should get both just in case. (Also comes in gray/white and black/white)

Pssssst. I can think of a couple schools the port ivory would work out really well for! :)

Aaaaaaand as a BONUS FAVORITE: THIS guy is a huge favorite of mine this week. 

Charlie is probably the most high maintenance street doggy you'll ever meet. Like this kid has some serious skin allergies. Well thanks to the extremely dry weather over the past month, Itchy McGee has been out of control. 

Monday night I took him to the vet, we tried our third allergy drug, and guys....he is like a new dog. I think his allergy meds are happy pills. He just has a whole new pep in his step...and literally is smiling and tail wagging non stop. It's awesome :) 

PS this picture is him in my lap in the waiting room. A cat walked in, hissed at him, and he was whimpering and in my lap instantly. Guard dog at its best. I think he just wanted more attention from the receptionists :)

And that's all I got! I hope you have a wonderful weekend!!

Until next time,

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

What's Up Wednesday

Hello Wednesday. 
Goodbye August. 
Where ya at, fall? 

Since it's the last Wednesday of the month over here, we, as usual, are talking about what's up. 

Linking up here, here, and here

What I'm Eating This Week {Month}

Ironically, I was really excited to tell you that I've been eating fairly healthily the past two weeks! Then when looked back at my food posts this month, I realized the only foods I've shared are brownies and cake. Go figure. In my defense, my meals are pretty's just the post-meal indulgence that gets me. I'll try to share healthier recipes. Until then, you can check out the Strawberry Brownies and Dark Chocolate Chip Bundt Cake :)

What I'm Loving 

Guys...this is so bad, but I'm already planning my December evenings. It's still 95 degrees outside but I already have a laundry list of ho-ho-hos and fa-la-la-la-las. So right now I'm loving that Christmas is 3 months away (ish). But I love fall, too. So I can't skip over the fall. Must.contain.excitement. But only after this picture (insert wide eyed emoji).

What I'm Excited About

Y'all - I'm actually REALLY excited about football season! For those of you that know me know this is a big deal - cause I usually don't give two toots and a dern about sports. But I've gotten pretty into it. In two weeks a huge group of my people are going down to the Baylor game and I'm just so stinking excited. Football season stresses me out to some extent (lil too much confrontation for my liking), but nevertheless I'm really excited to get the ball rolling.

What I'm Watching/Reading

Well we are in the two week period when summer shows slow down and fall shows (slowly) start to premiere. Key word: slowly. Kelsey actually sent me a calendar invite last night for September 24th - when TGIT returns on abc. Because we take things like this so seriously that they indeed need a calendar invite. 

As far as reading, I've actually been reading a lot this past month! See my August book review here

 What I'm Wearing

Honestly, nothing too special this month. Why is that? Because I told myself I wouldn't shop in August. And guys....I've actually succeeded! (Five days left, I realize, but still - this is big). So really this month it's been a lot of business attire, work out clothes, and Rangers gear. 

Yesterday, I did start a Tuesday Shoesday post with some REALLY cute neutral wedges. Check out those puppies here.

What I'm Looking Forward to Next Month

September is going to be a good month. Let's discuss:
  • the kick off of college football season
  • I'm headed to Scottsdale, AZ for a bachelorette party
  • reunions down at Baylor
  • my mom's birthday
  • my dad's birthday
  • the return of all my TV shows
  • two baseball games in California with my dad
  • the return of the Pumpkin Spice Latte 
  • and *hopefully* the introduction to some cooler temperatures
    Big month, people. Big month ahead.
    And that's what's up this Wednesday! Have a great one, everybody!
    Until next time,

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Tuesday Shoesday

IT'S TUESDAY SHOESDAY!! have no idea what that means. That's okay. I just thought it up last night.

So I have a sincere love of shoes. I mean, don't all women? No surprise there. Shoes are the way to a woman's heart. I even joked around in college that I would marry the first man who bought me a pair of shoes. Well, if he had dimples. No dimples, no deal. Okay ANYWAYS back to the shoes. 

So since my love of shoes extends much further than my budget for shoes, I decided to occasionally do a "Tuesday Shoesday" post. This will either be of shoes recently purchased that I'm a huge fan of (like today), or it will be shoes on my wish list that I'm dying for and think you will too :) 

And since we're riiiiiight on the fence between summer and fall, I thought I'd kick it off with my two favorite pairs of wedges that are now ON SALE. 

Did you get that? Not only am I bringing really cute shoes to your attention, but I'm bringing really cute shoes that are ON SALE to your attention. You're welcome :)

So I love tall shoes, but in my (sigh) old age, I'm finding that my heels/wedges need to actually be somewhat sturdy and comfortable. I'm pretty sure that's the first sign of getting old, right? When you can no longer cram your foot into the sexy shoe and just grin and bear it?

Well let me tell you - these wedges? Comfortable. And see those wrap-around-the-ankle straps? Sturdy. I give you comfortable and sturdy. And on sale. In case you missed that. 

Michael Kors "Josephine" Wedge

First up we have the Michael Kors Josephine wedge, and I will say that when I first tried them on I thought there was NO way I was going to be able to walk in those things. And then I wore them once, broke them in, and they are now some ridiculously comfy shoes. They come in tan and black, but I personally liked the contrast of the wood in the black pair. 

 And right now they're 15% off at Nordies! See sizes/reviews here

Jessica Simpson "Jadyn" Wedge

 I love Jessica Simpson shoes. They're affordable, comfortable, and pretty dang cute. (Is anyone else singing "These Boots Were Made For Walkin?") So when I saw these online and read all the great reviews, I ordered me a pair! And They are my go to pair of wedges. I loved wearing these puppies with shorts all summer. I felt like they made my legs look two feet longer :)

And get this: they ALSO come in tan and black. Imagine that. :) 

I bought mine at Nordstrom, but they're currently out of stock. You can find them on Zappos here.  Pssssst - free shipping!

So there you have it. The Jadyn and the Josephine. Both available in tan and black. The perfect transition shoe from the summer to the fall-that-will-not-even-feel-like-fall-for-another-two-months. 

Speaking of fall....What will be next?! Riding boots? Booties? Fuzzy slippers?! I am just waaay too excited about this Tuesday Shoesday thing. Plus it's really fun to say :) 

Have a great day everybody!

Until next time,
Monday, August 24, 2015

This and That

Anyone? Anyone? 

This weekend FLEW by. It was Friday, I blinked, and it was Sunday evening.

 I'll be honest, I look a lot like that picture right now. It's like I'm drinking the coffee...but the caffeine is not quite making its way up to the brain. So we brew more. We brew more coffee. 

And since today is a typical Monday and the brain isn't yet to its full potential - we're just talking about a little this and a little that. 


First off - notice anything different?

Last night I created a new page called "The Author." I realized that when I look at new blogs, the first thing I do is look at their "about me" page. And then I realized that I didn't even have one! So I remedied that. Because I'm sure the world was slightly spinning out of orbit with the fact that it was lacking...


Secondly - this weekend I crossed the first thing off my {30} before Thirty bucket list! 

Saturday night, Amy orchestrated a group of us getting together to go to Billy Bob's in Fort Worth! We're both huge Nashville fans, so when we found out Deacon and Scarlett were performing, we were all over it! 

So this picture is not of them at Billy Bob's - but ironically they were dressed very similar to this last night. Nonetheless, it was a VERY successful night and I can't wait to go back! In fact...Sara Evans is playing this weekend. Anyone? :)

To see my complete {30} before Thirty list, click here


Thirdly - we have a mini movie review...

Last Wednesday night, Jeff and I made dinner and [finally] watched Insurgent. I had literally been itching to get to watch this. Okay, that's a lie, there was no physical itching. But I was pretty antsy. This trilogy was my absolute favorite book series...even more than the Hunger Games. I didn't have high expectations for the first movie installment (because I loved the book so much), but I was pleasantly surprised. ...and then Insurgent happened. 

Personally, I wasn't impressed. The only reason I was entertained wass because I couldn't really remember what happened next (it's been a few years since I read the books...), and Four (the male lead character). Other than that I was just not overly impressed. Should have kept those expectations pretty low. 

Then last night I felt like crawling in bed early, so I fired up The Longest Ride. Now this one? This one I liked. It was also a pretty spectacular sinus clean out as I certainly did my fair share of crying. If you love love - see this movie. It's a pretty sweet kind of love. 

OH - and the main male character here is also smokin' hot.


Side note: This coffee is STILL not clearing the cobwebs. I'm in such a Monday funk right now.

I want to eventually start a "Wednesday Wishlist" post (I love a good alliteration), but since that hasn't happened yet, I'll share this little scarf I discovered on Like to Know It

 I have a leopard scarf (different coloring) and I each fall. So I've been looking for a "supplemental scarf," if you will, and am really excited about this one. Buuuut it's currently out of stock. So looks like I'm not the only one that's a huge fan of it. I'll just have to keep checking back!


And finally, the girls and I got together for our first monthly book club over the weekend, and it just got me REALLY excited for reading. Then I discovered the Goodreads app. Do y'all know about this? Am I really just that lame and am just figuring it out? 

Anyways, you can keep a running read list/wish list, receive recommendations based on your current readings, and most importantly: share books with your friends! We were oh so book chatty at book club, and instead of making a list in my Notes app, I can apparently track all things reading here! Who knew? 

So if you did know about this and you're signed up - send me a book recommendation. Thanks!


And that's about all the this and all the that I have this morning. Happy 1st day of school to all you mamas of kiddos out there! The first day was always my favorite as a kid: reuniting with friends, having a new clean planner, and no homework. To all you working folks out out for school zones. 

Until next time,

Linking up with Meg
Friday, August 21, 2015

Friday Favorites


First of all - let me just say you girls know your hair. I have a laundry list of things to try and it's all thanks to you! I also found comfort in that I'm not alone in my hair funk, so I'll definitely report back with my findings :)

Alright. Let's favorite. Linking up here and here this week!

1. Fall Preview 

The Dallas area got a sweet little preview yesterday: bearable weather. I took this screenshot as I was walking the pup and loving life. The only depressing thing was looking at the 10-day forecast and seeing that we'll be back in triple digits this weekend. What a tease. I am so beyond ready for fall. Pumpkin drinks return to Starbucks on September 4th. Not that I have a count down or anything... But it DOES lead me to....

2. Bath & Body Works - Pumpkin Everything

 My sister sent me this link the other day to all pumpkin things at Bath and Body Works, and I literally can't stop thinking about it. There is not much that gets me as excited as some pumpkin action (okay, maybe a little red and green) - but y'all. I mean really. It's basically September. That's close enough to October. Just do it. Indulge in the pumpkin.

3. Williams Sonoma Heritage Bundt Pan

If you were around here on Tuesday then you know about my new favorite bundt pan. This changes the game on baking. Bundt cakes are insanely simple, but when you can throw them in a cool shaped pan, they look infinitely more complicated (and impressive!). There's all different shapes - check them out here.

And if you need a recipe for the pan, you can check out my Dark Chocolate Chip recipe here :) 

4. Carrie Underwood - "Smoke Break"

Well, we all know I have a girl crush on Carrie, and last night at midnight her new single came out! Yes it was the first thing I listened to this morning. I just love her. AND her new album comes out October 23rd. Yes please and thank you I've missed you.

5. Baby Boy Blue Bell

SO, usually I just make mental notes of potential Friday Favorites throughout the week, and as of last night I still needed a number 5. THEN my friend Lauren sent me this video with "is this your child?" And when I watched it I knew it was my fifth favorite. You're welcome. We feel you baby boy, your tears are absolutely valid. We all only want Blue Bells.

And those are my five! Have an absolutely wonderful weekend everyone!

Until next time,