winter

Vegan Christmas Cookie Recipe

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One tradition that I can’t go a year without? Christmas cookies. I’ve mentioned on here before that my mom’s side of the family goes all out for Christmas cookies: her, my aunt, and my grandma spend almost a full week in December and make all different kinds of Italian Christmas cookies (about 70 different kinds and thousands of cookies total)… It’s kind of a big deal! Neighbors, coworkers, and family members look forward to receiving huge cookie trays all year long.

Since they’re not all vegan recipes, I can’t eat a lot of the cookies they make, but I have found a lot of vegan versions that they have started to incorporate during their week-long baking fest. One of my personal favorite kinds of Christmas cookies are frosted cutout sugar cookies, so my mom and I have created the perfect vegan option. It is so delicious — honestly better than any non-vegan version I’ve had. So, without further ado, here is my favorite vegan christmas cookie recipe…

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{find my cute little copper cookie cutters here}

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For the cookies:

01. 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
02.
1 cup Earth Balance, softened
03.
1/4 cup vanilla almond milk (or soy or coconut milk, whatever you prefer)
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1 teaspoon vanilla extract
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1/2 teaspoon almond extract
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2 1/2 cups flour
07. 2 tablespoons cornstarch
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1 teaspoon baking soda
09.
1 teaspoon cream of tartar

For the icing:

01. 4 cups powdered sugar
02. 4 tablespoons vanilla almond milk
03. 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

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01. In a large bowl, beat powdered sugar, Earth Balance, almond milk, and vanilla and almond extracts with electric mixer on medium speed to combine. 
02.
Stir in flour, cornstarch, baking soda, and cream of tartar until evenly blended, then wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 2 hours.
03. Heat oven to 375 degrees F and lightly grease cookie sheet. 
04.
Divide dough in half and roll each half into 1/4 inch thick sheets on a floured surface. Cut with cookie cutters and place cutouts about 2 inches apart on cookie sheet.
05. 
Bake for 7–8 minutes or until edges are light brown. Remove from cookie sheet and transfer cutouts to a cooling rack.
06. In a large mixing bowl, whisk icing ingredients until smooth and evenly combined. If icing is too thick, you can add in an additional teaspoon of almond milk. Frost cookies and add sprinkles as desired. Enjoy!

 

What is your favorite holiday cookie recipe?

xoxo


check-these-out-too

01. Peppermint Patty Recipe
02. 
Beauty Bites
03. Chocolate-Dipped Spoons
04. White Chocolate Peppermint Mocha

Holiday Gift Wrapping Party

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The holiday season is undoubtedly my very favorite time of year, and one of my favorite parts of the season is wrapping gifts. I don’t know why, but getting all of the wrapping paper, ribbon, and gift toppers together and picking out a theme for the year is always so much fun for me. I also think it makes it extra special when you give the gift to someone — it’s almost like two gifts in one and shows how much thought and effort you put into the gift.

On my holiday season bucket list this year I wanted to host a holiday gift wrapping party, so that is just what I did. I got all of the paper and toppings together, put on my favorite holiday playlist, made some vegan holiday cookies (the recipe will be up later this week — don’t worry!), and got everyone together to wrap all of our gifts. It was a fun way to spend a Saturday at home, and was an afternoon filled with holiday cheer.

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{charlie was oh so intrigued & sporting his new flandana from KJP — too cute! you can use the code ‘SYRKJP’ for 15% off your order, by the way}

I hope this gives you some ideas for wrapping your own gifts this year! The gift wrapping party is something I seriously recommend… It’s like the holiday season version of a Friendsgiving celebration! It’s the perfect time of year to get all of your friends/family members together, and you get to indulge in holiday sweets and treats and celebrate the season.

Hopefully the pictures give you some inspiration for your own gifts that you’re wrapping this year! I’m always looking for new little details or different ways to tie bows… Am I the only one? My number one tip/favorite way to make gifts look extra special is to attach cute little things on top: of course the usual bows and ribbons, but more importantly ornaments that they can keep for their own tree or little gold jingle bells. It’s the small details that make all the difference!

 

What are your favorite gift wrapping tips and tricks?

xoxo


check-these-out-too

01. Winter Wonderland
02. Snow Day Survival Guide
03. Signs of Winter
04. Peppermint Patty Recipe

Quebec City Travel Diary

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Today’s post is one of my very favorite types of posts I get to write — travel diaries! You guys know I was in Quebec City over the holiday weekend, and I loved it so much. It was such a fun and inviting place to be and I hope to go back soon! The European feel of the city is so charming, and although it’s a city landscape it still has that welcoming quaint little town feeling.

While the city is mostly French-speaking, many of the natives know enough English to carry on a conversation. That said, it never hurts to learn a few key phrases in French before you go; it’s nice to make an effort and makes it a little easier on yourself (and them!), too.

So, today I wanted to share my favorite places to eat, play, shop, and stay, so that if you end up going you can have all of my recommendations in one place. Without further ado, here is my Quebec City travel diary…

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{just scroll over and pin to save to your travel pinterest board!}

Of course, I was in Quebec during the holiday season, so most (if not all) of my recommendations are for the wintertime/holidays. Maybe sometime there will be a follow-up post with spring/summer recommendations… I would love to go back!

Have you ever been to Quebec City?xoxo


check-these-out-too01. Winter Wonderland
02.
Packing for a Winter Wonderland
03. Mont-Tremblant Travel Diary
04.
Nantucket Travel Diary
05.
Newport Travel Diary

Winter Wonderland

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As you guys know, I was in Quebec City for a few days last week/weekend. I had such an amazing time — it truly was like the North Pole! It reminded me a little bit of Mont-Tremblant, but it was more of a city, as opposed to a ski/snowboard mountain village like Mont-Tremblant. But, the European feel and Christmas Village atmosphere was so similar, down to the French-speaking natives.

It was 30 degrees and snowing for basically the entire trip, so it was the perfect winter wonderland. I’ll be sharing more about my trip and my recommendations to eat, play, shop, and stay later in the week with a Travel Diary, but for now I wanted to share an outfit that I wore for the chilly temps.

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coat (my absolute favorite, on sale, and comes in three colors!) // jeans // boots // socks // mittens (purchased in Ireland, similar here) // hat (not online, similar here) // crossbody bag (old, similar here)

I finally broke out this cherry red coat that I bought a few weeks ago, and I am seriously in love with it! The color is perfect for the holiday season, and the fur-lined hood is the perfect touch. The wool is warm, but I always layered with cozy cableknit sweaters underneath!

For winter accessories, a hat and a good pair of gloves or mittens was definitely necessary! I recently purchased this hat that kept me super warm throughout the whole trip. It’s a fleece-like material, so it’s super soft and cozy (I love this one and this one, too). The mittens are an old pair from Ireland, but any cream wool pair will give you a similar look.

I pretty much lived in jeans the entire time, which I’ll admit is a little unusual for me! This pair is my favorite and they are comfortable enough to walk around all day in. With two pairs of thick socks and some warm fuzzy boots, I was good to go!

 

What do you wear for a winter day?

xoxo


check-these-out-too

01. Packing for a Winter Wonderland
02. Snow Day Survival Guide
03. Signs of Winter
04. Winter Beauty Updates

 

Gift Guide | Stocking Stuffers

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Short and sweet from me today, because I am coming at you from my getaway to Quebec City! A quick introduction and then we’ll get right on to the good stuff…

Happy Saturday, everyone! If you are a regular reader of my blog, then you are probably familiar with my Weekend Edit series, where I share my favorite links of the week every Saturday. Well, for the next couple of weeks that weekly series will be replaced with my annual gift guide series, which I am so excited to share!

This truly marks the beginning of the holiday season for me, and I couldn’t be happier. I know you may be thinking that every single other blogger out there posts his or her own gift guides, so you may not be quite as excited as I am. That being said, I have tried very — and I mean very — hard to round up gifts that I think are unique and different than what other bloggers are sharing, so I seriously hope you agree! Here is the first installment of my 2016 gift guide series: stocking stuffers (which also just happens to be my favorite!).

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chic candle // glitzy earrings
cute ornament // pretty palette
pretty earbuds // fun phone case

What are your favorite stocking stuffers to give and receive?

xoxo


check-these-out-too

01. Dear Santa…
02. Gift Guide | For the Guys
03. Gift Guide | Little Luxuries
04. Gift Guide | Bestie

Packing for a Winter Wonderland

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As you read this, I am off for a little getaway with my family; we are headed to a winter wonderland and I can’t wait! We always love to travel for Thanksgiving, and this year is no different. I love Thanksgiving (not because what it stands for, if we’re being honest!), but because it’s a time when I get to have all of my friends and family together, which really is the best. What are your plans for the holiday, or for the weekend in general if you don’t celebrate?

Today I wanted to share a few essentials for packing for a winter wonderland, so grab your biggest suitcase because bulky sweaters, layers, and winter accessories always take up tons of space! If you’re wondering where we are headed, there is a hint in my sidebar with the destination. Don’t forget to follow along on Instagram! I’ll be sharing lots of pictures from my trip 🙂

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First thing’s first: I packed a ton of winter accessories, including hats, scarves, and mittens, along with my favorite winter coat and lots of thick pairs of socks. To pair with that, I brought along lots of warm and fuzzy sweaters, fleece-lined leggings, and my trusty pair of winter boots. The weather is supposed to be snowy and 30ºF, so I want to be prepared!

As far as accessories and beauty products go, I’m keeping it light and simple with just a few key pieces to pull the whole look together. A sparkly pair of earrings will be just what I need to jazz up an otherwise laid-back outfit for a dinner out — add some shimmery lip gloss and you’re good to go! For face makeup, I’m staying away from powders that will only dry my skin out more (the cold air will do enough of that!), and sticking to a lightweight tinted moisturizer and cream highlighter to even out my complexion and give it a glow.

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hat // scarf // mittens // winter coat (50% off right now!) // warm & cozy socks
fuzzy sweaters (also 50% off!) // fleece-lined leggings // winter boots
sparkly earrings // shimmery lip gloss // lightweight tinted moisturizer
cream highlighter

 

What are your necessities for a winter wonderland?

FreebieP.S. Want printable packing lists so you can stay organized for all of your holiday travels? You can get a free printable that I created here! (The link to download it is at the bottom of the post.)

xoxo


check-these-out-too

01. Snow Day Survival Guide
02. Signs of Winter
03. Winter Beauty Updates
04. Off to Mont-Tremblant

Holiday Season Bucket List

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Each time the seasons change, I like to make a bucket list for the upcoming one. It gets me so excited for the next few months, and makes it easier to remember everything I want to do, make, and see. The holiday season is undoubtedly my very favorite time of year, so it’s always the most exciting seasonal bucket list that I make.

So, today I wanted to share my list with all of you so that you can get inspired and hopefully get some ideas for yourself! Making the most of the cold and snowy season really does help it seem less dreadful… I find that if I celebrate it with fun activities, it makes it so much more enjoyable and I actually look forward to the wintertime. Without further ado, here is my holiday season bucket list…

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{just scroll over the image to pin it to your holiday pinterest board!}

I hope that this bucket list gives you some ideas and inspires you throughout the season! Make the most of it 🙂

What is on your holiday season bucket list? What are your favorite things about the holiday season?

xoxo


check-these-out-too

01. Holiday Season Prep
02. Snow Day Survival Guide
03. Signs of Winter
04. Peppermint Patty Recipe
05. Winter Beauty Updates

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