Beautiful Life and Style


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Gift Guide for the Bar and Home

Continuing this week with more gift guides! Today I’m featuring gifts for bar and home- perfect for the hosts and foodies in your life!

Gifts for the Bar and Home
1. As you may know, I LOVE astrology trinkets- these constellation note cards would make lovely birthday or thankyou notes!
2. The best candles are ones that last even once the wax is gone as beautiful jars you can use around the house.
3. I saw this cocktail book in a store on Charles Street- would make a perfect gift for anyone who is looking to shake up their drink repertoire (pun intended)! The book focuses on infusing each drink with seasonal flavors such as fresh ginger and summer plums.
4. While the summer season seems AGES away (seriously Boston? 21 degrees this morning??) this herb kit would make for a lovely gift- a promise of warm weather to come!
5. If you are gifting someone a bottle of wine, its always a nice touch to include a bottle opener or topper- and how festive is this gold bow???
6. For the foodie who has EVERYTHING- Fruit Chipotle Hawaiian Black Sea Salt. Who knew such things even existed!
7. Bitters. You either have them or you don’t. But most likely you never have them when you are looking to use them. This set has a great assortment of flavors
8. I once was at a party and one of the guests brought three dozen oysters as a gift for the host- weren’t they the best ever!?
9. Call me traditional, but sometimes the best gifts aren’t the fun novelty items but the treasures that you will have forever. While you probably would never go to a store and buy yourself a silver bowl- how pretty would one look say, by the front door so you can toss your keys in it, in the kitchen filled with lemons and limes, on a bookshelf filled with matchbooks, etc. And every time you notice it you think of it as the special gift it is!
Click the photos for links!
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Gift Guide: for Her

Have you started your Christmas shopping yet?? I can’t believe it is only two weeks away! With that, I’m bringing back my gift guides for nearly everyone on your list. Starting today with gifts fit for the pickiest princess. But some budget friendly items mixed in too!

Gifts for Her
1. SWANS. This beautiful coffee table book follows the jet set to beautiful parties around the world- perfect gift for your favorite society damsel or just a girl who wants to be one!
2. This cute Nina Ricci crossbody bag has the versatility to go from day to night. Not too small- not too big and the perfect colors to wear all year round.
3. Ray Bans Wayfarers never go out of style.
4. This makeup stick from NARS is the perfect item for the girl on the go to stick in her purse- works for eyes cheeks AND lips!
5. If this fur funnel scarf is half as warm/ snuggly/ luxurious as it looks then it is a must. Makes an equally beautiful accessory as it does warm winter necessity.
6. the best Balenciaga fragrance
7. While I have quite the collection of statement scarves- I have very few stand out necklaces. Recent research has led me to find Lauren Hope’s beautiful line of jewelery.
8. Pointy toe flats are the hot shoe style this season- and how can you not love these JCrew ones with rose gold toes!!

Click the images for links!


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My Christmas in Instagrams

Sorry for the blog hiatus- who knew the holiday season was so hectic?? My family had a wonderful Christmas- Nick and I hosted and it was holly jolly warm and cozy with an abundance of presents and family and FOOD. As much as I love Christmas- I’m almost glad its over because now I can go back to eating like a little rabbit- I’ve probably gained 20 pounds this December.

If you stalk me on instagram, you know what I’ve been up to- but for the rest of you- here’s a little glimpse into our celebrations. I promise to be back to “normal” blogging tomorrow!!

Lighting up the Tree

Lighting up the Tree

Create your own gingerbread man

Create your own gingerbread man station at a friend’s party

Brown Paper Packages

Brown Paper Packages tied up with string

Christmas Crackers

Christmas jokes

Christmas Feast

feast feast feast FEAST

Christmas Tulips

the cozy view from the couch

Boston Common Christmas

Merry Christmas from Boston!

 

 


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Bloggers’ Favorite Holiday Cocktails

the-mistletoe-wasnt-the-only-thingIs anyone else starting to feel the holiday crunch?? I feel like everyday is another party or dinner, and I can’t count how many times I’ve run to Charles St to pick something up in the past few weeks. Last week I was so busy, I gave myself a cold (yes, mom, I haven’t been sleeping enough) But back to my point- December is a hectic month! So its important to set aside some “me” time everyday- and what better way to unwind than with a great cocktail?

Today I’ve asked four bloggers to share their signature holiday drinks-Drew of Catfish & Caviar, Matt of Boston BarHopper, Elisabeth of Headbands and Bagels and Liv of Liv.Love.Blog. Four drinks that are not only boozy, but full of seasonal ingredients that conjure up visions of sugarplums and the sounds of sleigh-bells. Let me just say, I can’t WAIT to try them, and I’m sure you can’t either! Reading these recipes puts me in such a Christmassy mood.

So a big cheers to all bloggers out there- and don’t worry- we can make it!

Drew of Catfish & Caviar: PomRazz Mintini

This is def my favorite Holiday cocktail because its super simple & includes all the Holiday colors! The pom, raspberries, & mint leaves make me feel healthy while I’m guzzling them down Christmas Eve 🙂

PomRazz Mintini

Matt of Boston BarHopper : Hazelnutcracker

This simple recipe yields a creamy, frothy, nutty drink that you can reward yourself with after a long day of Christmas shopping, wrapping presents, sending greeting cards, what have you. It calls for a raw egg, which tends to make people a little squeamish. An egg was not uncommon in older cocktail recipes, but it gradually became something of a lost art. I’ve been seeing it more frequently in recent years, as mixologists revisit classic concoctions like fizzes and flips. It contributes a meringue-like creaminess that, unlike milk or cream, doesn’t weigh the cocktail down. If it still makes you uneasy, just use a fresh egg (organic if that’s the way you roll), shake well, and you’ll be fine. Adding a little extra alcohol can’t hurt, either.

Hazelnutcracker

  • One large brown egg.
  • 2 ounces Frangelico (if the holiday stress is really getting to you, throw in a little vanilla vodka).
  • Nutmeg.

Crack the egg into a shaker. Shake vigorously for at least one minute; your egg should look thick and frothy. Add the Frangelico and four or five ice cubes. Shake again, for at least another minute; frost should form on the exterior of the shaker. Strain into a glass. Sprinkle with nutmeg, and use a stirrer or straw to swirl the nutmeg on the surface. Best enjoyed on a snowy night in front of an open fire.

Elisabeth of Headbands and Bagels: Hot Buttered Cider

This recipe is one of my dad’s holiday standards. At past Christmases, we have enjoyed hot buttered cider with our homemade apple cider on Christmas night while we open our stockings. Its a warm, comforting holiday drink and is great when the snow if falling all around you.

hot buttered rum 2hot buttered rum 1hot buttered rum 3

Ingredients per cup:

  • Rum or Jack Daniels 1oz per 8oz of Cider (pick your poison)
  • Apple Cider 8-12 oz (I usually pick fresh cider in the refrigerated section)
  • Cinnamon sticks (1 per cup)
  • Butter (1 Tbsp per cup)

If you are making a large batch, I suggest heating all the ingredients in one pot on the stovetop. Cook until liquid is warm and butter is melted. Do not let it come to a boil.Make sure to stir while heating. This option is great if you are making a batch for a group larger than 5. If you are making a small batch, using the microwave is just as easy. Each mug should be heated for approximately 2 minutes, or until butter is almost melted. Stir each mug once heating is done to ensure all the ingredients are well mixed. Great option for small batches or a cup on your own. Happy Holidays!

Liv of Liv.Love.Blog.: Yule Mule

If you know me, you  know I love Moscow Mules. In the summer, I love them with watermelon infused vodka and big watermelon slices in them, and in the winter, I swap these flavors for cranberry. This cocktail is especially light and refreshing- cheers!

  • 2oz Triple 8 Cranberry Vodka( If you can’t find cran. vodka- 2 oz regular vodka and a splash of cranberry will do)
  • Ginger Beer
  • Lime Juice
  • Cranberries

Pour Vodka over ice in a low-ball glass, fill up the rest of the glass with ginger beer and stir. Squeeze in juice from one lime wedge and garnish drink with cranberries and edible glitter stars.

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For: Him and Her under $50!

Today’s the last day of my formal gift guides (with a special surprise planned for tomorrow). I thought I would finish up by proving that you don’t need to spend a fortune to come up with a beautiful, thoughtful gift. All of these items are under 50 dollars!! So if you’re on a budget or just looking for a few extra stocking stuffers, there is still plenty to choose from.

A lot of inexpensive gifts sold during the holiday season SCREAM Christmas, so I’ve tried to include some items that aren’t just red green and silver. I’ve said before how much of a girl crush I have on Grace Coddington- her memoir hit stores recently and would be a great gift for anyone interested in fashion editorials.  Also, I’m realizing as I write this how drawn I am to semi precious stones- might have something to do with my 3rd grade rock collection! But c’mon- The agate coasters are trimmed in gold, and how great is that malachite bowl???

under $50 for Her

 j crew wide bangle / j crew narrow bangle / Kate Spade earrings / Jouer makeup / Deborah Lippmann / Set of 4 Agate Coasters with Gold Leaf Edge / Chic Shop Extra Small Malachite Bowl / Amethyst Quartz Votive Holder / Gold Reindeer Christmas Ornament / The Sartorialist: Closer / Grace: A Memoir / Claus Porto Mini Guest Soap S/5 Pink / Feather Collection Tray

Nick has informed me that my gift guides for guys are a bit lacking- but what can I say, not EVERYONE wants to see a gift guide full of scuba diving gear and saltwater aquarium parts (90% of Nick’s presents for the past 4 years). That being said, I think that  most guys secretly dream of being Anthony Bourdain- and his book would be a great gift. And who wouldn’t love a martini shaker that also doubles as a recipe guide and drinking game all in one?! (Each die represents a different part of a drink- glass, alcohol, garnish, etc) It looks so fun- I might have to get one for myself 🙂  But if you are a guy reading this- feel free to add a comment on what you want for Christmas- you are all a mystery to shop for and us girls always appreciate new suggestions.

Under $50 for Him

Jack Black ‘balm Squad™’ Lip Quad / Coach Bleecker Legacy Small Luggage Tag / Skull Candle – LA NUIT – Amber and Lavender / Anthony Bourdain’s Les Halles Cookbook Strategies, Recipes, and… / Golden Nugget Christmas Ornament / Victorinox Camper Swiss Army Knife / Cigar Style / Poker / COCKTAIL DICE WITH SHAKER | Mixed Drinks & Cocktails Recipe Game |… / Brass Pyramid Pencil Sharpener / Infinite Series Bar 11 THE NIGHTCAP Cocktail Infused / Shattered Moonlight Chocolate Bar