JL gift guide: for the kids, lover, & YOU!

Tis the season!

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I’ve put together some of this year’s hottest gifts for your kids, lover, and you in one easy place! Just forward this to whom ever you want and say ‘pick something!’ Easy 🙂

1. xbox one: This is on my kiddos’ list this year. We’ve held off on getting one until they were a little older and now that we are in Utah and cooped up inside a little more- I think that this plus something like ‘Just Dance’ will be under the tree!

2. Bluetooth Wireless Speaker: I bought one of these for my husband last year and we fight over who gets to use it all the time! I take it down in the basement gym to work out, he takes it to church when he has to teach Sunday school lessons and wants to share something for people to listen to- etc!

3. PJ’s for the fam: This is just a given. You need matching pjs 🙂

4. Kano Computer kit: My husband is super in to the kids learning coding and all things technology. I don’t know who would love this more- him or the kids.

5. Fitness ball: There are so many uses for this and who doesn’t love a good workout from home! I will be posting my favorite exercises with it soon- so get one now so you can join along!

6. Max + Moose blanket: I know the owner of this company and she is as sweet as they come. She created this company/blanket and took time to perfect it and boy does it show. I LOVE it. Rem uses it daily.

7. Apple Watch: Thank you Apple for finally making the watch where you don’t have to have your phone with you to use the GPS function! My husband and I just got them and we are obsessed!

8. Orbit card: I can not tell you how many times I get blamed for losing my husband’s wallet *eyeroll*. So, consider this already in his stocking!

9. Jewelry: Enough said. Some of my favorites include: Made by Mary. Helen Ficolora. and of course our amazing Juniper Lemons necklaces.

10. Running Headphones: Whether they prefer wireless like these or just traditional ones that will always stay in your ears- headphones are always a win… especially how often most people lose them.

11. Rover 2.0 Spy Tank: My kids would have so much fun with this! A spy tank?! Seriously!?

12. Lingerie: Enough said 😉

13. Clothes: Have you seen the amazing sweaters, dresses, etc that we have right now!? Add it to your cart and have your love press BUY! You’ll know its great quality, fit, and price!

 

happy shopping!

xox

aj

fast holiday sweets and treats

Tis the season of holiday sweets, treats & parties! If you are anything like me, you have overbooked yourself this holiday season- between kid’s parties, friend’s parties, bunko nights, work gatherings, christmas shopping & wrapping, holiday traveling… the list goes on.

So, I’ve rounded up some yummy, but FAST, go-to treats for all those times you need to take a cookie to a school party, christmas gifts to the neighbors, or just having the girls over for a night of fun! They are all delicious, fast to make, and super cute and festive.


Soft Maple Sugar Cookies

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Ok, now these probably take the longest out of all the treats on here- BUT- it is so simple of a recipe, and it makes 3 dozen cookies! That’s enough for school Christmas party treats AND treats for the neighbors.

Cookies

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tablespoon cinnamon (or, if you can find it, maple cinnamon sprinkle)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 3 tbsp pure maple syrup

Maple Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 1/2 stick butter, softened
  • 4 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup (add more for a richer maple flavor- then just add more powdered sugar- you won’t screw it up!)
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar (and more or less for proper consistency- again, you won’t mess it up!)

Cream together butter, sour cream, sugar and powdered sugar, in a mixer, until smooth. Add in the vanilla, cinnamon, and eggs. Stir on low speed until mixed. Then, add in baking soda and continue to mix- on a low speed- for 10-20 seconds.

One cup at a time, add in the flour. Once all flour has been added and incorporated, form dough into a ball and knead the dough on a flour covered surface until it is no longer sticky. You may need to add/sprinkle flour to the dough.

Using a rolling pin, roll out the dough between 1/4 and 1/2 inch thick. Then, use a 2.5 inch diameter circle cookie cutter and cut out circles- place them on a parchment covered cookie sheet.

Bake at 350 degrees for 8 minutes. Allow to cool completely before frosting.

For the frosting- beat butter, cream cheese, vanilla, maple syrup, and powdered sugar with a mixer. Beat until smooth. Add more maple syrup or powdered sugar for desired consistency. Using the back of spoon, frost each cookie and sprinkle with cinnamon. I dare you not to just dip the cookies in the frosting all. day. long.


Christmas Rice Krispie Treat Balls

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Ingredients

  • Kellogg’s Rice Krispies Cereal
  • Mini Marshmallows
  • Butter
  • Red food coloring
  • Green food coloring
  • Christmas sprinkles

To get the three colors- you will need to make three batches. The easiest way to do it is get out 3 large glass bowls. In each bowl put 3 tbsp of butter. Then, do the next set of instructions all for one bowl before moving on to the next.

Heat the butter in the bowl for 45 seconds, or until melted. Then pour in 3 cups of mini marshmallows. Toss until coated in the butter. Microwave for 1minute and 30 seconds- stirring after 45 seconds. Once finished, stir until smooth. Now, add the food coloring of your choice- or none if doing the white ones – mix until the color is vibrant and incorporated. Next, add 3 cups of Rice Krispies cereal. Once mixed, wait until it is cool enough to not burn you but warm enough to still be malleable. Butter your hands and roll them into balls!

Repeat these steps with the remaining 2 bowls adding whatever color or sprinkles you want!


Spiced Apple Cider

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Ash made this for me last time I was in SF with her- and now I have it almost every day!

Ingredients

In a large pot- add 2 parts apple juice to 1 part cranberry juice. Put a few tablespoons of the spices in the mulling ball and let simmer in the juices for 20 minutes. Remove the spices and enjoy! SO simple, so yummy, and makes your house smell AMAZING! Keep it in the fridge and just reheat when you want some more!


Peanut Butter Balls

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Ingredients

  • 2 cups creamy peanut butter- get the GOOD stuff, not the healthy 😉
  • 4 1/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 cup softened butter
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • Dark, milk, or semi sweet chocolate or a mixture of some of them! I do half milk/half semi sweet
  • Shortening

Line a baking sheet with parchment or wax paper and set aside. Mix the peanut butter, powdered sugar, butter and vanilla on high speed until smooth and creamy. Form into small balls (remember they will be even bigger once they have chocolate on them, so don’t make them too big!) and place on the baking sheet. Once you have formed all the balls, place them in the freezer.

Once they are frozen- it’s time to make your chocolate. Dump two bags of chocolate chips (dark, semi, milk- or a combo!) into a glass bowl with 2 tablespoons of shortening. Microwave on 50% power for 1 minute- remove and stir thouroughly. Repeat doing shorter intervals until the chocolate is melted and smooth. Take a box of tooth pics and stick one in a frozen peanut butter ball, dip it in the chocolate and tap on the side of the bowl to let the excess chocolate drip off. Place it on the parchment/wax paper and use another toothpick to help push it off. Then dip another toothpick into the chocolate and use it to cover the top of the peanut butter ball that is was not covered in chocolate- give it a little swirl to make it look fancy if you’d like 😉 Repeat steps with remaining ones! Put in fridge to harden. If your chocolate starts to harden- just pop it back in the microwave!


Santa Crunch Popcorn

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Ingredients

  • 10 cups of Popcorn- Use the microwavable bags!! These are time saver recipes!
  • salt
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 3 cups Mini marshmallows
  • Mini M&M’s – red/green
  • Pretzel M7M’s – red/green
  • Christmas sprinkles

Pop 2 bags of popcorn in the microwave and pour it out on a wax paper or parchment paper covered surface. Pick out the unpopped kernels- no one wants to bite into one of those!

Next, in a glass bowl, add 3 tbsp of butter- melt in the microwave, approximately 45seconds. Stir. Add 3 cups of mini marshmallows. Toss to coat. Microwave for 1 minute and 30 seconds- stirring after 45 seconds. Once finished in the microwave, stir until smooth. Pour it over your popcorn! Gently fold the popcorn and marshmallow mixture together with your hands or a spoon. Then add the candies & sprinkles! Let it cool and then enjoy!


Hot Chocolate Fudge

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Ingredients

  • 2 cups Chocolate chips
  • 1 can (14oz) + 4 tbsp Sweetened Condensed Milk
  • 1 cup White chocolate chips
  • 1 1/2 cups Mallow Bits (mini hot chocolate marshmallows)

In a glass bowl, combine the chocolate chips with the 140z can of sweeter condensed milk. Microwave for 1 minute. Stir until smooth adding 15 seconds at a time back in the microwave if not smooth. Pour into a foil lined 8×8 pan that has been greased with butter. Combine the white chocolate chips and 4 tbsp of sweetened condensed milk in a glass bowl and microwave for 30 seconds- stirring and heating until smooth. Spread this mixture on top of the other chocolate layer. Top with mini marshmallows- then gently press down. Refrigerate until set and then cut into bite sized pieces!

 

xox

happy baking!

 

holiday shoes under $100 & splurge

Hi, our names are Aj & Ashley and we have a problem:

Shoes.

We love shoes.

I’ve rounded up some of our holiday time favorites- in two batches.

The first, a round up of shoes that Ash and I own. Between us both we own most all of these shoes, some in multiples- and there’s a reason. They are our favorites. Yes, they are expensive- but, I will say I used to be the gal that had 7 pairs of “black pumps”, none of which I really liked, they didn’t last, and they were all incredibly uncomfortable. Now, if I had instead invested in one pair of quality black pumps- I would have spent the same amount, they last longer, they are more comfortable, and let’s be honest- I just like them better! So, that is my strategy now. I sometimes will buy a fun, inexpensive pair – but most of my shoes I invest in and replace multiple pairs of shoes in my closet that I then won’t wear.  Screen Shot 2016-12-07 at 2.13.32 PM.png

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14

The second batch – everything is UNDER $100 and some UNDER $50! Several of them are lookalikes for the expensive ones! Screen Shot 2016-12-07 at 2.18.47 PM.png

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16

Which ones are you going to grab!?

 

xox

aj

gift guide under $40

It’s the time of year where you are running around like a crazy person trying to remember every school party, work gathering, and hostess gift you were supposed to go to, bring, and write a thank you note about. There is so much going on and because of that, if you are like me, you are going to get that doorbell ring from someone you completely forgot to grab a gift for during your last Target, Anthro, mall, let’s be real- entire metroplex trip.

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I’m going to give you guys a little tip that our mom taught us – always have some gifts wrapped, labeled with what is in them, and stashed in a closet for those unexpected gift givers that show up! This way, you are never caught off guard or stressed-at least about this part of the holidays.

Here are some of our picks for stash & grab gifts under $40 for adults:

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1 Reversible Prep & Serve Board | 2 Capri Blue Iridescent Jar Candle | 3 Celestial Coaster Set

4 Sweet Salutation Travel Mug | 5 Slivered Geode Coaster 6 Anthro Measuring Spoons

7 Hammered Copper Mug | 8 Stance Socks | 9 Levtex Faux Shearling Throw

10 Orbit Key Finder | 11 Organic Herb Garden Kit Set of 2  | 12 Holiday Garden Seed Kit

13 Kate Spade New York 2017 Agenda Book | 14 Polar Bear Snow Tube

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happy holiday shopping!

xox

aj