Homemade Holiday Drinks

I'm a Huge coffee drinker and usually get the same few types of coffee unless its around the Holidays and there's a few more choices . So just a few weeks ago I decided to get the Caramel Apple Spice . I haven't had It since last year and completely forgot about it and Katrina has never had it, when she had a sip of my she loved it. So it quickly became a big deal at Chic Little House lol . As I was waiting in line I happen to glance over and got a chance to see how simple it was to make at home. I double checked with the Barista to make sure I had it right and now I'm sharing it online lol .

Caramel Apple Spice 

You Will Need

1. Cinnamon Dolce syrup - we use the Starbucks brand
2. Apple Juice
3. Cinnamon and sugar
4. Whip Cream
5. Caramel

In a coffee mug or glass depending on how warm you like your drink first add 1 pump of syrup for every 4oz of apple juice .Then add steamed apple juice (I like to stir the syrup and Apple juice at this point but I think it taste just as good if you don't ) ,whip cream on top then caramel , cinnamon and sugar .And that it .If you have had this drink or try it please let us know what you think .

Katrina likes caramel on in the inside of the of the cup (this is optional) I think its too sweet.

Katrina's cup of Caramel Apple Spice - lots of Caramel

My cup less Caramel, but still good!

Another holiday favorite is the classic EGGNOG . Even before I had "REAL" EGGNOG I loved it but I always just bought it from the store and drank it plain and SOMETIMES added Brandy lol. One day I had a few friends over and one noticed the carton of eggnog I had in the refrigerator . He told me that He makes his own and showed me how, so now I make it every year. 

Classic Eggnog

You Will Need 

4 eggs
1 table spoon of vanilla extract
3/4 cup of sugar
Pint of milk
2 cups whip cream
1/4 cup rum
1 cup brandy

Stir egg and sugar together in a large saucepan; gradually stir in milk. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, for 18 to 20 minutes or until mixture thickens and coats the spoon this is to make sure there's no bacteria from the eggs I heard the alcohol kills the bacteria but I'm over cautious lol . Remove from heat then stir in brandy, rum, and vanilla. Cover and chill for approximately 8 hours. Final step - beat whipping cream at high speed with an electric mixer until soft peaks form; fold into the chilled egg mixture. Garnish with nutmeg or more whip cream (if desired). This should make about 8 cups

Please share with us your favorite Holiday drinks and/or even your recipes for these same drinks. We would love to hear.


Black Friday Shopping

I hope everyone had a fun relaxing Thanksgiving!! I planned on posting on Monday, but decided to extend the Thanksgiving weekend a little bit longer, I hope you all understand. We didn't do a whole lot of  shopping on Black Friday { we didn't leave our house until after 10am! } talk about late, but got some good deals on a few unexpected items that made us smile. Our first stop on Black Friday was Best buy, we mostly looked around at TVs and CD's but left empty handed, then we headed next door to Target. Oh how I love Target, amazing we only bought one thing a DVD of It's Complicated. I love Meryl Streep and loved the movie and for only $3.99 I gladly took it home with us. Do you remember the amazing kitchen from the movie? 

{ via here }

Next we stopped in Hobby Lobby, its my third time there since my first visit a few weeks back. I picked up a few things for Christmas. Then we headed to Goodwill. I discovered last year that Goodwill has half off days on Black Friday. The Goodwill we popped is was buy, people had cart fulls of items. I was super happy when I spotted a large gold paper mache  reindeer and a mini one. Here's the cute set I bought for only $ 3.50. One of the antlers on the large reindeer needs repair, nothing a little hot glue can't fix.

Hasani thought I was crazy was crazy when he saw me pushing our stroller and carrying a large gold reindeer under my arm. Are you thinking the same thing? I'm planning on spray painting the pair glossy white, which will give them an instant modern look, kind of like the West Elm Paper Mache ones at $100 each. So cool, I only spent a little over three bucks to achieve almost the exact same look.

Oh and Z Gallerie also sells deer at $ 129 bucks a pop! The Z Gallerie version is white and glittery. It's much larger in person than the West Elm ones are, more like my deer which is over two feet tall!
Then we gabbed some lunch at Boudin SF, they have the yummiest bread ever! I love eating there, especially on a brisk sunny Friday afternoon. Too cute Daddy and Baby matched! Grey on Grey. After lunch we popped in Anthorpoligie, sorry no pictures, I just browsed, because I really wanted to go to West Elm. It's my new favorite store. 

I love West Elm's clearance section, so many goodies!! I took my time and looked though all the bins, they have a ton of pillow covers on sale and tons of dishes. 

I found two pretty green pillow covers, that I'd seen online and didn't think much of until I saw them in person. The green is so pretty and the circle dot print it subtle and delicate it adds a nice textural pattern against the green fabric. I also liked that the back of the pillow closure was done in brown buttons. I bought two pillow on clearance for $ 9.99 each. I also grabbed an egg shaped greige vase, they were only  bucks can't beat that. Do you remember the bathroom hook that I was hoping to buy that matched the Textured Bath Hardware I bought for a steal { each piece was only $ 1.99! } I found the hook in the store for $ 4.99, so I didn't complain. 

I made a few more updates to our living room in the next couple of days. I'm in love with all the changes. It's all coming together so nicely, and I love how the green pillows look in our space. It's feeling more finished & polished. Oh and we did buy one more item from West Elm, it had to be shipped so when it arrives, I'll share. Lastly we popped into Kmart on a whim and I stopped in their Home Improvement section and bought four cans of white glossy Krylon paint for a $ 1.00 each!! They where on clearance so I bought all the the stock they had left! A girl can never have enough white glossy spray paint. I already stared using a can on the picture frame { new artwork for the living room } I'm going to spray paint both the deer today! 

So that was our day out Shopping Black Friday sales, I'm so happy we popped into various stores and picked up a few items on the cheap that made us happy. You know I love a bargain!

Did you go Black Friday Shopping, and great finds? Where you an early bird or did you get a late start like we did, but still scored a few good deals?


I'm so thankFUL for my two boys, I love them beyond words! They bring so much joy to my life every day!! 

{ gratuitous cute picture of my kiddos!! }

Pictured snapped by my husband, his always takes the BEST pictures of me with our kiddos! :) love you Hasani, and so thankful for you:)

 Enjoy your time with you family and loved ones on Thanksgiving. I'm still trying to decide if I'll go out shopping on Black Friday, thanks to a %15 off coupon at West Elm that showed up in my mail, I'm very tempted! I really looking forward to going shopping w/my BFF at Ikea over the weekend :) Whatever I end up doing, I'll share my scores and misses. 

Any plans this weekend? How are you celebrating Thanksgiving?


Our Holiday Card 2011 & More

My family is finally sending out Holiday Cards this year! Every year we always intend too but it gets to late, so I abandon the idea altogether. This year I was proactive and picked a weekend on the Calendar, lucky for us it was a lovely chilly Saturday morning in Northern California. We took the pictures ourselves more on that later (in another post) Here's are lovely Holiday Card we had made from LrnM Design. Lauren is the owner / graphic designer behind LrnM Design and is also a fellow blogger, her personal blog is called Meyers Maison: transforming the home she recently bought with her husband on a budget { a girl after my own heart!} Not only does she design cute whimsical Holiday Cards, she has created cute artwork, callings cards and cards all of it darling. 

Lauren recently contacted me about creating  (she must have been reading my mind) our darling Holiday cards (as seen above) I was so excited when she emailed me the preview, the Holiday cards feel like 'Us' fun and relaxed! The cards are customize-able you can add your own text and greetings etc, choose color or black & white. Now I'll I have to do is print the cards at are local CVS and then mail them out easy peasy. 

Lauren is offering ALL Chic Little House Readers, a 20% off discount on all Holiday Cards from now until December 3, 2011!!!  The are various styles to choose from, so if your putting off your Holiday Cards don't start a new tradition of getting them made and in the mail, like I'm finally doing. Please enter Promotion Code CLH20 at check out, click here or www.lrnmdesign.com

What do you think of our Holiday cards, are you mailing any out to friends and family? 


Bathroom Plans

Now that we have new West Elm hardware { bought it at a super discounted price!, see here } My promise { to myself } is to paint the bathroom again { this be the 2nd time this year } over the Thanksgiving Holidays, hang the hardware and hang some shelves. My BFF and her baby are coming to visit Thanksgiving Weekend and we are planning a trip to Ikea! To her Ikea is a religion, and its our first time going together so it should be a FUN time. I'm planning on buying shelves from Ikea. I recently pinned, this pretty bathroom for shelving inspiration, LOVE it. Its perfect for my tiny bathroom, I have the same tiny wall next to our toilet. I love all those shelves, perfect mix of practical and pretty. I also like the bracket hardware underneath the shelves, very cute.

{ via here }

Most likely we'll do 3-4 shelves, all stacked like in the picture, currently our extra bathroom toilet paper resides in our linen closet, but I now want to keep in the bathroom. I like these flexible white totes from the container store, perfect for toilet paper! Its cute and durable for a house full of boys. 

I also love clear storage containers, and think thees stacking ones would be perfect for me. I'm a product girl and love products and some products have to stay in the bathroom. All my other girly product stuff is my top dresser drawer in my bedroom { here }

I also like these simple acrylic bath canisters also from The Container Store, simple cute and space saving. I plan to use a mix of clear plastic containers and woven baskets on the shelves. 

I placed my order order with The Container Store yesterday, thanks so a 10% off coupon I saved a little moolah. The closest  Container Store is around 70miles away, so I decided to buy it online. I do that a lot these days, with the little guy now here I like things be delivered to our doorstop, it frees up the weekends. We also place on replacing the dated cream marble style vanity sink top with a white one. The sink base is fine its solid wood, when we bought our home I painted over the wood with dark chocolate paint and still love the look. We have boring beige cream tile floors; that wont be replaced any time soon, so I want our new wall color to compliment our floors and not work against them. I've been leaning towards a mushroom greige color. I really like Martha Stewart Living paint colors, I'm currently leaning towards two options. Both colors are neutral,and should some warmth into our bathroom 


Pottery Clay 

Right now I'm not sure if I'll keep our current white waffle shower curtain, or get a new one. I think after the walls are painted, the shelves hung and a few minor tweaks are made I'll decide. Next week is Thanksgiving { it came too fast this year } so I'll be counter-top shopping / purchasing and buying paint over the weekend. 

Are you working on any bathroom projects? Is your bathroom in need of a refresh like mine is?


What the What?!?

Your not going to believe this post, but trust me the following is all true and I have the proof. I'm regular stalker of West Elm, I go on their site like it's magazine. Please tell me I'm not the only one? Any who, I was making my daily lookie lou on their website and decided to check out the bath stuff. I've been meaning to update our bathroom for quite sometime, and even painted it earlier this year. Well I hate our bathroom paint color, I blame it on prego hormones in choosing the wrong paint color, I decided to look on for paint color / bathroom inspiration & ideas. I clicked on the 'Lighting & Hardware' and saw that the Textured Bathroom hardware was on sale. It was on sale for a crazy AMAZING good deal, all of it for only $ 1.99 per piece, towel bars, paper towel holder, towel ring all for $ 1.99 each!! ON SALE! 

I didn't believe my eyes, there's no way it was that cheap! I happily placed everything in my cart. I bought 2 towel bars { one 18' one 24" } the paper towel holder, and towel ring, my total before tax and shipping was only $ 7.96. I know your sipping your coffee or tea in utter disbelief, right? Well here's the screen print proving it was only $ 1.99 for each item. The crazy thing is these sale items weren't in the 'sale' section of the website, they were mixed in with the regular items? Odd huh? Well, went I went on the next day to see if they were still on sale { so I could blog  & tweet about them } but they were back to full price. It must have been some typo, but West Elm honored the price and shipped everything to my door a week later. Here's a screen print of the of the sale.

Now a closer up view, so you can see the price. 

Even Hasani was in disbelief, until he saw the packing slip. I think he thought I went on a little West Elm bathroom spending spree lol. Ok, I know I sound silly, but I actually screamed with excitement when my package arrived. I opened each box and smiled with GLEE, and joy and thankfulness! Aren't these gorgeous and not oh so typical bathroom hardware! I love how they add some glam with their shiny finish, they also reminds me our my jewelry tree and branch candle holder. I'm super in love with this hardware, too bad I didn't see the towel hook on the website, would have loved to buy that on sale { I know you just rolled your eyes, I'm rolling mine too } I'll have to make a strop in the store this weekend.

I love that the toilet paper rolls just slip on for a clean look

See, they cute little bags attached to all the hardware, the bags hold the screws and anchors! I love that they thought about the smallest details in the packaging.

In all honestly, its the push I need to make bathroom less blah and actually pretty. So here's my deep heartfelt apologies to all friends and family that's had to use my bathroom for the past 6+ mos! I'm sorry! I promise to make our bathroom, practical and pretty and chic! 

Now for the fun part, lets do the math. If I would have bought the Textured Bathroom Hardware at full price I would have paid $ 109.00, but I only paid $ 7.96 + Shipping + Tax, my total was only $ 13.96!!

What do you think of our new bathroom hardware?

Have you come across any crazy good deals lately that made you scream in delight? Photobucket

Growing Pretty Blooms Indoors

Yes, this is yet another bulb post, are you sick of them yet? I hope not. When I planted my bulb garden a few days I ago, I saved a few bulbs with the intention of growing a some pretty flowers indoors. I have some round vases I bought for our wedding reception and decided to use one to plant my bulbs. I also bought a bag of decorative rocks from the dollar store, yes I bought rocks! I know sounds silly, but far less of a hassle, of finding rocks around my house and then cleaning them etc. I checked out a few websites to make sure I was forcing bulbs to grow correctly { Martha Stewart and This old House }

From everything I read its best to use a glass vase to check water levels easier and change water if needed. Add the rocks to your vase and add water then the bulbs, the bulbs should not be touching the water. To actually get the bulbs to grow, the vase needs to be placed in a cool dark area, to trick them into thinking winter has come. You can either put them in a cabinet, place a paper bag over them,, put them in the garage or attic. I choose to place our bulb vase in the garage. Its dark, cold and the perfect spot to mimic winter. The bulbs should stay in the dark spot for 8 + weeks. So with any luck I'll have pretty blooms for winter, maybe around Mid January. When there's  an inch or two of greenery, I'll bring the bulb vase back inside my house and place it in a sunny spot.

I'm hoping the few bulbs I 'planted' in the rocks will be super pretty, and look as pretty as the flowers I've been admiring.

{ via here }

{ via here }

{ via  here}
Oh, I forgot to mention I have no clue what bulbs I saved to plant indoors, from our bulb garden. So I'm extra anxious to see if the flowers will grow, and what flower is going to grow! 

These bulbs in vases would also make great presents for friends and flower and be a pretty homemade gift, instead of buying the store bought version for ten bucks a pop. You could easily buy a bag of bulbs for around $ 10 bucks, some glass vases or the Ikea white pots and dollar store rocks and have pretty gifts for friends. Even place them in a box and wrap them up pretty and say 'No peeking, until after Christmas

I might be gifting some friends some pretty bulbs for Christmas this year :) The gift the keeps on growing a blooming, lol. 

Have you planted bulbs indoors before? Any tips?


This Weekend

I'm so looking forward to the weekend and the pretty fall weather, its going to be a crisp 66 degrees this weekend in Northern California. I know I say crisp, but that's cold to me, lol. Our weekend plans include: finishing up the Mid Century Modern Secretary Secretary Desk, a few Trips to Starbucks, playtime with the little guy { the park } and tween { Wii time } and a few 'master' bedroom changes and a few sewing projects.

I hope you all have a pretty fall weekend! Any plans ?


Avery's Five Month Birthday Photo

My sweet adorable playful energetic baby is five months old! Quick reminder just in case your new to my blog, we're taking monthly pictures of Avery for the next two years in his nursery. Nothing will be planned just him hanging out, its such a fun way to watch your baby grow up. After 24 months of pictures, I will turn the photos into a book.

Avery Five Months

As always its hard to choose just one picture of Avery to share! :) Some highlights of Avery turning five months old, loves to roll over and over and scoot back and forth on his back. He loves sucking on his hands, letting me know teething is right around the corner. He loves to sit in his bumbo to eat his rice cereal and oatmeal. He loves playing with his softie puppy book and chewing on Sophie the Giraffe and does big laughs when being tickled. He also loves to play with his feet and can sit up unassisted for a few seconds. Life is good having a little one around the house to play with and kiss and love on is so much fun!


Finally a Hobby Lobby!

Though other bloggers I found out about a store called Hobby Lobby, where they sell Anthroplogie style hardware, and tons of mirrors and always have the best coupon deals! I've been very jealous of you all living in the Midwest and East Coast and Down South, because there where no Hobby Lobby Stores in California! Well I prayed to the Hobby Lobby Gods and my prayers were answered, they opened a store about 10 miles from my house in Northern California { Roseville } to be exact. Last Friday night { stop humming that Katy Perry song , lol}  my husband and I and the kids ventured into the Hobby Lobby. The minute I walked into the store I was blown away by the square footage and craftiness that is Hobby Lobby. It's like Micheal's and Jo-Ann's fell in love and had a baby and named her Hobby Lobby!! 

Oh yes, I'm hooked at all the crafty departments: Framing, Fabric, Home Decor { like cheap Home Decor, some of it crazy looking } the Art Section and much more. Oh and the people who work there, also nice. So this post is my ode to Hobby Lobby. I gave the Hasani the camera and asked him to walk around a snap a few pics. I was super busy, taking it all in to take in pictures myself! :) They had frames galore, a huge section of frames waiting to be framed! 

I love all the funky trim, it won't show up in my house but its fun to look at. I did buy some pom poms and if you follow me on Pinterest, then you know I have plans for them :)

They had a nice selection of various style fabrics, I saw some that caught my eye. Again the Hasani took the pictures, so I can't show you the ones I liked. But look at the thread in the background. Its cheaper than Jo-Anns!! And so are there zippers, and they actually have prices on there zippers, I hate going having to look at the stupid chart to tell me the price on zippers. Bless them for including the price on the zipper!

They have a ton of faux foliage. 

Lots and lots of home decor, some tacky and some very fun!! I like that little rope ball, very nice. Oh I also saw some great lamps, but again no pics. I was taking it all in :)

I left Hobby Lobby with a little loot and bought everything either on sale or had a coupon { I printed out early that day} I bought a picture to be framed, a pretty knob and some pom poms, I'll share all my loot soon when it shows up in future projects. 

For the Hobby Lobby veterans, what do you love, like and hate about Hobby Lobby? Do you skip Jo-Anns and Micheal's and head directly for their child Hobby Lobby? What's your last Hobby Lobby score? How often do you stop in there?

For the Hobby Lobby novices out their, have you heard of the store? Ever been to one? What's your favorite craft store?