Wednesday, February 29, 2012

What I'm Lovin' Wednesday

I'm loving a custom monogram template I found over at The Wedding Chicks.
They could be used for save the dates, out of town bags, or just something fun to hang on the fridge. 
I love their website because of all the inspiration, DIY tutorials, and free printables.

Speaking of paper love, have y'all seen the new Martha Stewart for Staples collection?

 Seriously, Martha, you get me with your craft glitter and now you do this?!?
Quatrefoil sticky notes? 
The Phi Mu in me is squealing like a little girl.

Craft paper + quatrefoil sticker = pure joy

I'm loving that the Memphis Tigers whooped some tail in last night's game.
Y'all it was awesome.
You would have never known this very team beat us just a few weeks ago...

I went with two dear friends, Hunter and Jenna (who's my Maid of Honor).

And lastly, there are some exciting changes coming into my life soon.
Cannot wait to share with y'all the good news!


Monday, February 27, 2012

Wedding: how I asked my bridesmaids

From the second Cory proposed, I knew who I wanted to be my bridesmaids.
And by that time, I even knew how I wanted to ask them!

 My friend, Rebecca, is seriously incredible.
She knew how to read my mind and put my vision of asking my bridesmaids to paper.
The cards incorporate my wedding colors as well as a silhouette, which is going along with my theme.
She also introduced me to the sweet calligrapher, Louisa.

Using a different phrase to make things fun,
 Louisa wrote out all the cards to give them the handwritten letter look I love so much.

Although I'm sure all of the girls already assumed they would be bridesmaids on my special day,
I love the fact that they now have this little memento to keep.

...and they all said yes! :)

Friday, February 24, 2012

because that's awesome

Amen, Kate, amen!
Happy Friday!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

What I'm Loving Wednesday

 Thanks to following @NARSissist on twitter, I signed up for a free sample from one of my favorite companies.

My sweet momma picked me up some cute ballet flats.
She said she thought of me due to the Memphis blue. :) 

And speaking of's the latest video in the Stuff ______ Says phenomenon.
Stuff Memphians Say
I was asked by my friend, Molly, yesterday to do some digging for a cute messenger/laptop bag.
I found this one that she and I ended up both loving.

 My future MIL introduced me to a new a need another one!
Any of you watch it?
It's insane...

And today marks the first day of Lent!
"All are from dust, and to dust all return."
Ecclesiastes 3:20

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Fat Tuesday: King Cake Recipe

It was 3 years ago that I started baking king cakes as a tradition for Mardi Gras.
I've used the same recipe with some minor tweaks, and I love it every time. 

Prep Times: 30 min.; Cook: 10 min.; Stand: 5 min.; Rise: 1 hr., 30 min.; Bake: 16 min. 
This recipe uses bread flour, which makes for a light, airy cake. You still get tasty results with all-purpose flour-the cake will just be more dense. (I highly suggest buying a bag of bread flour, and I found mine easily at a local grocery store.)
Yield: Makes 2 cakes (about 18 servings each)
   I used my milk bottle measuring cups that a sweet friend gave me as an early wedding gift.

  • 1  (16-ounce) container sour cream
  • 1/3  cup  sugar
  • 1/4  cup  butter
  • 1  teaspoon  salt
  • 2  (1/4-ounce) envelopes active dry yeast
  • 1/2  cup  warm water (100° to 110°)
  • 1  tablespoon  sugar
  • 2  large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 6  to 6 1/2 cups bread flour*
  • 1/3  cup  butter, softened
  • 1/2  cup  sugar
  • 1 1/2  teaspoons  ground cinnamon
  • Creamy Glaze (ingredients below)
  • Purple, green, and gold-tinted sparkling sugar sprinkles (or whatever colors you like)
  • Plastic babies for good luck! 


1. Cook first 4 ingredients in a medium saucepan over low heat, stirring often, until butter melts. Set aside, and cool mixture to 100° to 110°.
2. Stir together yeast, 1/2 cup warm water, and 1 tablespoon sugar in a 1-cup glass measuring cup; let stand 5 minutes.
3. Beat sour cream mixture, yeast mixture, eggs, and 2 cups flour at medium speed with a heavy-duty electric stand mixer until smooth. Reduce speed to low, and gradually add enough remaining flour (4 to 4 1/2 cups) until a soft dough forms. (I had a 1970's hand mixer for mine, so kudos to anyone who owns a stand mixer, but it still can be done by hand!)
4. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic (about 10 minutes). Place in a well-greased bowl, turning to grease top.
5. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 1 hour or until dough is doubled in bulk.
6. Punch down dough, and divide in half. Roll each portion into a 22- x 12-inch rectangle. Spread 1/3 cup softened butter evenly on each rectangle, leaving a 1-inch border. Stir together 1/2 cup sugar and cinnamon, and sprinkle evenly over butter on each rectangle. 
** This is where I did mine a little differently. After dividing the portions in half, I took one half and divided it into three equal strips of dough, rolled each strip in the cinnamon mixture, and then braided my king cake instead of having a jelly roll. (I think It yields a prettier cake and still incorporates the cinnamon mixture throughout.)
7. I then stick a plastic baby on the underside of the cake and through the braids. The baby is cleaned before and non toxic. If you roll it up, add the baby while rolling. Just tell you guests to carefully look for it before their eat their slice!
8. Roll up each dough rectangle, jelly-roll fashion, starting at 1 long side. Place one dough roll, seam side down, on a lightly greased baking sheet. Bring ends of roll together to form an oval ring, moistening and pinching edges together to seal. Repeat with second dough roll.

9. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 20 to 30 minutes or until doubled in bulk.

10. Before baking, use the remaining butter and cinnamon sugar mix on top of cakes.
11. Bake at 375° for 14 to 16 minutes or until golden. Slightly cool cakes on pans on wire racks (about 10 minutes). Drizzle Creamy Glaze evenly over warm cakes; sprinkle with colored sugars, alternating colors and forming bands. Let cool completely.

*6 to 6 1/2 cups all-purpose flour may be substituted.

 I did one braided and one jelly roll style.
Creamy Glaze:
3 cups powdered sugar
3 tablespoons butter, melted
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice Note: this is can be subtracted if you don't want a very tangy glaze.
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 to 4 tablespoons milk
Mix together the first 4 ingredients
then stir in 2 tablespoons milk, adding additional milk, one tablespoon at a time, until you reach spreading consistency. 

Now enjoy :) I brought the braided one to work, and it was a huge hit.
Happy Fat Tuesday!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Q&A Monday

1. What is the best advice you've ever given and received?
Always be yourself. It's too much work to be somebody else.
(advice from my dear Gran.)

2. Type of music you like most?
classic rock

3. Shoe size?

4. Who sent the last text message you received?
my sweet, future MIL

5. If you could meet any one person (from history or currently alive), who would it be?
I think it would be cool to meet God.
I have some questions :)

6. Have you ever been fired or “let go”?
Never, ever, ever!
Although I'm sure I made enough mistakes at my first job...

7. What's under your bed?
my boot collection and my jank, broken Dell laptop

8. Do you believe in love at first sight?
maybe LUST at first sight...
because really, what do you LOVE about them when you just see them?

9. What is your middle name?
Erin...after Elvis Aaron Presley.
My sister was 10 when my parents let her name me after Whitney Houston and Elvis.
true story :)

10. Do you think that you are a good singer?
When I'm in the car, I can sound like anyone! haha

Sunday, February 19, 2012

This Weekend

Cory and I spent a delayed Valentine's Day together by going to see the Memphis Grizzlies.
We ended up winning by one point in the last few seconds of the game.

 Afterwards we had dinner at Local, followed by "dessert" at Silky's on Beale.
If you don't know what a Silky's Diver is...
well, it's a bucket mixture of beer, wine, and who knows what else, 
and it's meant to be shared (hence all the straws).

I shot some how-to vlogs for you.

And I baked a king cake for Mardi Gras.
(recipe to come soon!)


Saturday, February 18, 2012

Beauty Review: February's Birchbox

Just from looks alone I'm excited to try this box out.

The goods (clockwise from left to right):
Eye Rock Designer Eyeliner
BB digital download for Green River Ordinance
Supersmile Powdered Mouthrinse
Kiehl's Clearly Corrective Dark Spot Solution
Juice Beauty Blemish Clearing Serum
SHU UEMURA Essence Absolue Nourishing Protecting Oil

My Thoughts:
- So this eyeliner is like a sticker?? for my eye???
- I'm wondering who this band is...I think I've heard of them before.
- I'm a sucker for any blemish fix. 
- I've never had anything by Kiehl's but the name alone is making me excited.
- I'm wondering if I will see any payoff from this whitening rinse?
- And I'm hoping I still like Moroccan Oil better than this Shu dry oil. It's $68 bucks!!


Friday, February 17, 2012

Fill in the Blank Friday

1. The love of my life is my fiance, Cory. Duh. But as cheesy as it sounds, he is my best friend.

 2. Falling in love is really fun and really scary at the same time. I remember Cory and I had been together for awhile when I realized I loved him. I had given up on the "date to just have fun" game by the time I met him, but I wanted to make sure he was the one for me. I mean, I was 19 when I met him...I didn't know what love was at 19! ha

3. Marriage is a contract, a commitment, a relationship. It is not a business. It is not something to take lightly. I may moan and joke about how Cory and I were dating for 6 years when he proposed, but I probably wouldn't have changed a thing about our timeline. Knowing our dating has outlasted most marriages of kids our age makes me confident in our future marriage together.

4. The longest relationship I've ever had was 6 years with Cory. We will have been dating for OVER 2,500 days by the time we make it to the alter!

5. The key to a good relationship is communication, honesty, and hard work. And I always try to make sure I'm treating Cory how I would like to be treated by him.

 6. I feel loved when Cory says he misses me while he is away for work. His simple sincerity is enough for me.

 7. My favorite quote about love is:

"You have known each other from the first glance of acquaintance to this point of commitment. At some point, you decided to marry. From that moment of yes, to this moment of yes, indeed, you have been making commitments in an informal way. All of those conversations that were held in a car, or over a meal, or during long walks – all those conversations that began with, “When we’re married”, and continued with “I will” and “you will” and “we will” – all those late night talks that included “someday” and “somehow” and “maybe” – and all those promises that are unspoken matters of the heart. All these common things, and more, are the real process of a wedding."

From Beginning to End: The Rituals of Our Lives
by Robert Fulghum


Thursday, February 16, 2012

Toasted and Hustle

Since I've shown the shade Buck so much love in my Naked palette, I decided to try another new color combo. 

See the little heart?
I really did love it! ha

And the newest combo?

Toasted on the lid and Hustle in the crease

very natural and warm
And if you put two and two together, yes, it's the shadows I'm wearing from my vlog a few days ago.

I obviously love it too.


Wednesday, February 15, 2012

valentine's day aftermath (and how my tweet got me something free!)

 So Cory ended up working half the night away at work.
I figured I could still make my trip over to Muddy's to not make the night a complete waste.

When I walked up to the door, you could see inside the line was wrapped around the room.
A dude in a sharp suit who was walking in front of me swiftly turned around, and told me,
"Hmph, they aren't THAT good."

Thinking this is worthy of tweeting, I wrote this while I waited in line...

Not thinking much about it, I continued waiting in line.
(And really, dude? It took me less than 15 minutes to get my goods. You lose.)

That's when I snapped back to reality when I heard the owner, Kat, call out,
"Is there a Whitney Hall here? Whitney Hall?"

At this point I had no clue as to why she would be calling my name.
That's when she walked over to me and said,
"Girl, can I just say thank you? I loved your tweet. Adorable!"

And I was left standing there with a free Muddy's treat in hand, 
and the whole line of 25 people staring at me wondering what the heck I did to deserve it.

Oh, yes, they are so worth the wait.

Now going back to my Valentine's Day goodies for Cory...
I did end up getting him a voodoo doll cookie, 
and humorously went ahead to say it signified his boss who made him work on Valentine's Day.

And ironically by the time he got it, it looked like this...

Hope y'all had a good one!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


So Cory finally returned home from a two week job assignment in Alabama...
Just to be called in to work on Valentine's Day...
(FFCS, you. can. suck. it.)

So it looks like Cory and I will be celebrating this weekend, which is fine by me.
I love the holiday, but I hate all the crowds and fixed menus.
In the meantime, I've thought about picking him up a treat from Muddy's for when he gets home.

Don't these Valentine's Voodoo dolls look delish?
And I doubt you need another proud aunt moment brought to you by Ava and Autumn Marie,
but here ya go.

Ava assing out her homemade valentines
(suckers turned flowers by making hearts hole punched for petals and set in a little "grass garden")

I mean, who wouldn't want to receive a Valentine from these two?!?

And here are my homemade valentine's they sent me in the mail yesterday.


Autumn Marie's

I'm one lucky gal ;)
Happy Valentine's Day, y'all!!!


Sunday, February 12, 2012

This Weekend: Lazy Sunday

I'm finishing off the weekend with spending some quality time with my dear momma, making a yummy vegetarian breakfast, and reminiscing over some family heirlooms. 

I love spending time with my mom. She's very chill, to the point, and hilarious. Right now, one of our favorite hobbies would be watching Say Yes to the Dress marathons on TLC, and weighing in on all of those dresses. She's been such a help in all of the wedding planning, and I couldn't thank God enough for giving me a mom like her. 

(As a side note, today marks two whole weeks Cory has been out of town for work. Fingers crossed he will be done working on planes and headed home. Aspen and I miss him too much to go a day longer!)

Have a great rest of your weekend!