Holiday Gift Guide for the Kitchen

Have someone on your Christmas shopping list that’s a little difficult to find the perfect gift for? How about going down the practical route and getting them something you’ll know the’ll use in some capacity — a.k.a. something for the kitchen. Because let’s be honest, who doesn’t love food? If you know that person in particular enjoys cooking or baking it’s simply an added bonus. Here are some of my favorite items compiled into one convenient location for ya…

  1. A cookbook. This gem pictured, “Cravings” is written by Chrissy Teigen, model turned into blogger and subsequently an author and it is filled with a number of delicious recipes. Once you get all the basics needed, the text makes it extremely easy to change up what’s on the menu on a daily basis. // Hardcover version available at Barnes & Noble for $17.99
  2. State cheese board. What’s better than a little home state pride? This top shelf living Wisconsin slate cheese board is available at Bed, Bath, & Beyond and they have various state options available. It’s great for its practical use or for decoration. // Snag it here for $19.99.
  3. French Press Set. Have a coffee lover or perhaps a caffeine addict on your shopping list this holiday season? Help them up their at-home brew with a french press. This ‘Bodum Made in Portugal 3-piece Copper French Press Set’‘ from TJ Maxx is sleek, not to mention it’s only $34.99!
  4. Decanter and Glass Set. // Five Piece Fitzy & Floyd Decanter and Glass Set for $29.99, comes in copper or silver — totally playing into the blush/rose gold craze.
  5. Coasters. I have a newfound obsession with the Food Network’s line of kitchen items at Kohl’s (especially their white dishware, which I’ll get to shortly). I recently bought these marble and wood coasters from that line and love the sleekness with the touch of edginess. // Food Network Marble & Acacia 4-piece Coaster Set from Kohl’s for $17.49 [SALE]
  6. KitchenAid Professional 6 Qt. Pro Bowl Lift Stand Mixer. // I’ve admired these mixers for years as a go-to ‘big girl’ item necessary in one’s kitchen. They make baking and cooking seamless, allowing for multi-tasking during preparations. What color is your favorite? That’s the difficult decision... // KitchenAid Professional 6 Qt. Mixer in Silver from TJ Maxx for $249.99
  7. Ninja Chopper. A perfect addition for the kitchen for that special someone who loves to cook. And if they’re anything like me, they’re probably not the best at chopping fruits, veggies, meats, etc. by hand. Help them out a bit this holiday season! // Ninja Express Chopper from Target (in red or black) for $19.99
  8. Keurig. As a loyal coffee addict (hence the name of my blog), I can’t say enough praise about Keurigs. The flexibility to buy a small one for the office for a midday pick-me-up or two or to buy the larger version for home is truly a win-win. // Keurig K475 Single-Serve on sale at Kohl’s for $139.99
  9. Spiral Vegetable Slicer Set. A must-have kitchen item that makes eating healthy a little easier. This Paderno World Cuisine 4-Piece Slicer from Wayfair comes with a variety of blades and it’s dishwasher safe! // Vegetable Slicer Set from Wayfair for $40.99
  10. Bar Tool Set. Thinking a little outside of the box here with some kitchen items someone may want, but not necessarily buy for themselves. I love this Oggi 10-Piece Professional Stainless Steel Bar Tool Set from Bed, Bath, & Beyond because (1) it has ten freakin’ pieces with it and (2) it includes it’s own cutting board. // BUY IT FOR ONLY $39.99
  11. An apron. Let’s be honest, a chef could always use a new apron. This one is especially cute… // Kate Spade New York Polka Dot Apron from Macy’s $30.00
  12. Electric Wine Opener. The ability to effortlessly remove a cork from a wine bottle within seconds is one that will forever change your life; dead serious friends. This rechargeable opener can open up to 120 bottles in a single charge. It’s a little pricy, but SO worth it! // Cuisinart Commercial Wine Opener from Williams Sonoma for $99.95

Holiday gift guide

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Holiday Gift Guide: Magnolia Hearth & Hand

If you’re a fan of Fixer Upper or know someone that is, this gift guide is ideal for your shopping needs. Their ‘Hearth & Hand’ line recently launched at Target and they have a number of affordable, cute home items that will make wonderful Christmas presents (either for yourself or someone else). Here are my favorites under $100:

Magnolia Gift Guide (1)

 

Holiday Gift Guide for the Millennial Woman

The holiday season is quickly approaching and with that comes the frantic thought of trying to cross everyone off of your shopping list. No need to worry, I’ve got you covered!

  1. Love Your Melon beanie or hat. First off, I can’t say enough positive things about this organization. They were founded in by two college students with a mission to improve the lives of children battling cancer by donating 50 percent of their proceeds to nonprofit partners to combat the fight against pediatric cancer. How can YOU help? Buy the millennial or any age lady in your life for that matter a stylish hat this holiday season! The ‘Black Speckled Gold Foil Hat‘ is only $35. It’s 100 percent cotton and is made in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The ‘Crimson Washed Baseball Cap‘ for $30 is another one of my favorites, naturally I would choose the red color because it’s my favorite. It also comes in a sea glass, navy, grey, and khaki color.
  2. Urban Decay Cosmetics Naked Ultimate Basics. These are all neutral, matte shades in a convenient square compact. “I love the depth of color. I personally love working with matte because it looks great every day, but they offer enough smokey colors where you can turn it into a night look,” commented Olivia Mercer. She received the pallete last year for Christmas and after using it every single day she still has not depleted the colors. It’s available for $54 at Ulta!
  3. Copper 16oz. Corckcicle Tumbler. These cups are amazing and perfect for a young professional or college student on the go. They are stainless steel with triple insulation with the capability of keeping cold drinks chilly for up to 9 hours and hot ones for 3 hours. They come in a variety of colors for only $24.95, I love the copper. However, you can’t go wrong with the classic white, black, or silver.
  4. Sugar Lips Blooming Beauty Collection. She’ll feel like she hit the jackpot when she opens these puppies up and tries them out for the first time. The lip treatment has SPF 15 providing a plethora of moisture with oils and antioxidants. PLUS, many of them are tinted with a subtle, but perfect amount of color. Shop the set at Nordstrom Rack for $38 // A usual $48 value.
  5. Hunter Boots. THE actually best. Like if a shoe could be a GOAT it would be these boots, hands down. I had wanted some for quite some time and “Santa” bought them for me last Christmas. They come in a variety of heights and colors and work great in the spring and summer on rainy days, fall season with leggings and sweaters, and transition perfectly into winter with fleece inserts when the snow begins to fall. The ones pictured are ‘Original Tall’ in black which cost $155 // they come in matte or gloss.
  6. Harry Potter Deathly Hallows Alex and Ani Bracelet. Truthfully, any Alex and Ani bracelet would make an awesome present for a millennial woman (I’ve touched on it in previous gift guides). I’m just partially to HP because after all, it’s Harry Potter. The Deathly Hallows one is $28 and comes in silver and gold. There’s also a Lumos set of 3, Hogwarts two tone option, and numerous necklaces and rings. //If the person on your list isn’t a Harry Potter fan, search for a bracelet that may have meaning to your relationship with them or perhaps a passion of theirs.
  7. Gemstone iPhone 6//7//8 (and plus) case. A no brainer if you happen to be also buying her a new iPhone is to pair it with a stylish case. Personally, I’m a huge fan of marble and rose gold is trending; this case hits both of those points while providing a sturdy, protective defense for your precious cargo. Snatch it up for $20 at Nordstrom Rack or search similar ones online. // Personally I love Amazon Prime, it’s inexpensive and arrives quickly!
  8. Memory Foam Bath Pillow. I stumbled upon this as of lately while searching my Target app and you can bet it’s on my Christmas list this year. The Spa Sensations large white pillow suction cups onto the tub for optimal relaxation, what’s not to love? Oh, and it’s on sale for $16.14!
  9. Wet Hair Brush. These IntelliFlex bristles are miracle workers, helping to glide through white, tangled hair with ease without the hassle of using products…OR worse, ripping out chunks of your luscious locks. There’s countless colors and designs to choose from for just $9.99, I’m a fan of the plan light wood option.
  10. Aromatherapy Diffuser. It converts water and oils into mist to both humidify whatever room it’s placed in, but diffuse the scent while preserving health benefits. The one pictured is a ‘NextGadget BPA Free Ultrasonic Aromatherapy Essential Oil Diffuser’ for $42.99 on Amazon Prime. There’s so many good ones to choose from, it really just depends on the decor in which room you plan to place it. // Here’s a couple other options from Kohl’s — ‘Ellia by HoMedics Soothe Essential Oil Diffuser for $39.99‘ and ‘Serene House Aura Ultrasonic Aromatherapy Diffuser for $59.99.’
  11. Essential Oils. The 8 Essential Oil Set pictured from Amazon has eight essential oils that can be used for aromatherapy, custom massage and body oils, diffusers, vaporizers, oil burners, inhalation, perfume, blends, spa, home care and cleaning products. So many options!
  12. Maria Shireen Classic Design Hairband Bracelet. There’s nothing worse than having a hairband on your wrist in a professional setting, at a fancy event, or on a daily basis for that matter when it doesn’t fit right with other bracelets and jewelry. This solves that issue. It comes in silver, gold, or rose gold for $45 a piece OR you can buy the trio set for $120.
  13. Cozy Slippers. These Abound Mellanie Faux Fur Pompom Slippers from Nordstrom Rack for $24.97 come in burgundy, grey, black, and blush. Here’s another Pom Pom Slipper option for $9.99!
  14. Bath Bombs. I freakin’ love baths. After a long workout, day, or week it’s nice to take an hour or longer and just relax. Not only do they offer a relaxing vibe and sometimes calming scent, but they’re uber fun. // Shop bath bombs at Ulta here.
  15. Ivanka Trump’s Women Who Work book. I don’t care what your political beliefs are, I think Ivanka has great insight on women in the workforce. It’s a fabulous read for young professional ladies in need of a little extra motivation in their careers and life in general. // Buy the hardcover copy for $20.80 from Barnes & Noble.
  16. Starbucks Gift Card.
  17. WOLF Caroline Leather Travel Jewelry Case. It’s always tedious to throw jewelry into ziplocks or perhaps in a travel makeup case when on-the-go. Necklaces get tangled, earrings get lost…it’s just not a good situation. This black leather, quilted case is so cute and compartmentalized perfectly to fit everything in an organized manner. // Buy it from TJ Maxx for $39.99. Also, here’s the same case in red.
  18. Charcoal Face Mask. This ‘Origins Active Charcoal Mask’ for $27 is heaven in a small, squeezable tube. “Bamboo Charcoal acts like a magnet to draw out deep-dwelling pore-cloggers, White China Clay absorbs environmental toxins, Lecithin dissolves impurities. Skin looks clear, feels perfectly pure.”
  19. Waterproof bluetooth speaker. This ‘Soundbot Water Resistant Bluetooth Speaker‘ is $14.48 and comes in white, green, blue, pink, and yellow. It provides high definition sound with up to 6 hours of playtime when fully charged. Not to mention, it is compatible with both Android and iPhones, tablets, iPods, MP3 players, and other bluetooth capable devices.
  20. A watch. I don’t think you can ever go wrong with buying someone a nice, classic or perhaps trendy watch as a gift. It’s a classy, statement piece that truly never goes out of style and is extremely useful (even in the cell phone attached world we live in today). Any neutral color one is a wise choice. In particular, I love gold and rose gold tones; especially this ‘Skagen Rose Gold and Beige Women’s Watch‘ for $49.99 from TJ Maxx.

Gifts for the Millennial WomanComments, questions? Leave your thoughts below, I’d love to hear them! Also, be sure to follow me on Instagram @CamerasAndCoffeeBlog.

XO

50 Shades of Grey + Bedroom Blues

See what I did with that post title? Caught your attention, didn’t I?

Whelp, sorry to burst your bubble, but there’s nothing steamy or scandalous about this post (well other than the deals I suppose). I asked and you, my Instagram followers voted in favor of seeing a break down of my home good items currently in my apartment so I figured I’d start with my favorite room: my bedroom.I had a dark blue and white patterned duvet the last couple of years and HATED it. If you’ve had a duvet, you know my struggle and if not…well I wouldn’t necessarily recommend buying one. They aren’t the most conducive when it comes to washing and you can never get your bed made neat enough because it simply doesn’t lay right. Yes, the struggle is real folks. I knew I wanted a cleaner, simpler look while still keeping my rustic wood furniture and gold hues with blue accents (a proven color that provides a calming presence and relaxation). So I went back to my basic white down comforter and focused on buying furniture that fit the rustic chic vibe I was aiming for.Here are the items in my room for you to shop for yourself:

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Rustic wood mirror was purchased at Michael’s a few years ago (sorry) and the white and burlap material jewelry holder with pearl push pins is from TJ Maxx!

My white with grey paisley sheets on my bed are Tahari Home from TJ Maxx and were purchased awhile ago for under $40. I would highly recommend browsing your local TJ’s if you’re looking for some good quality sheets at a discounted rate! However, I would also advise picking up some of my extra pillowcase and box spring sheets which are Microfiber Room Essentials from Target of all places. They’re only $20, yes, you read that right…only $20 and they’re the softest sheets I’ve ever owned. My mom bought similar ones for my bed at my parents, go check them out you won’t regret it! [SHOP ROOM ESSENTIALS MICROFIBER SHEETS HERE]


Then of course, there’s a number of items that are still on my “to purchase” list. Like a dark blue floor vase of some sort, an area rug that’s currently on an idea board of mine on Wayfair and some more picture frames. If you have any questions or feedback, I’d love to hear it! Either comment below or follow @CamerasAndCoffeeBlog on Instagram and send me a message!

P.S. If you know where I can find a great quality, fluffy white down comforter at a good price PLEASE let me know, thanks!

As always, stay classic and comfy my friends,

XO

Embracing the Halloween Spirit

Ever since I was very little, my mom instilled a deep love for Halloween within my siblings and I. One year I was Baby Bop (let’s clarify, like at 2-years-old), another year I was Pippy Longstocking complete with wire woven through my braids in order to make them stand up on their own. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve come to appreciate DIY outfits more and more. My sophomore years of college I was a scarecrow (makeup compliments of Pinterest), a following year I created a Madhatter costume myself which is honestly one of my best costumes yet (in my opinion), and the following evening I was Saw…“Do you want to play a game?!”In need of a last minute costume for Halloween night? Pull out that old flannel you have in your closet, grab a pair of jeans, and snag your cowboy boots if you have them (if not, rider boots or booties work too). Using a little black eyeliner (preferably liquid) and red paint (or lipstick if you have no paint), you can easily transform yourself into a cute scarecrow. For night number one this year out in Madison on Friday I was Wonder Woman. — Moment of truth, actual superhero and/or movie costumes can get pretty expensive. If you want a decent one that has all the parts, they’re not easy to find either. The search can easily cost you upwards of $50 to $100 dollars depending on where you’re shopping. [SHOP THIS EXACT COSTUME HERE]For night number two on Saturday evening, I turned from superhero to sassy villian as Poison Ivy. The emerald green, choker bodysuit was snagged off of Poshmark for only $20 and after many failed attempts and searching for emerald green tights, I decided to pick up fishnets instead from Target. Initially, I had ordered a pleather dark green skirt from Amazon, but when it came the color was way too dark with more of a blue hue than anticipated. Luckily, my mom came across this emerald green lace apron at Goodwill and I tied it around my waist as a skirt (check thrift stores around Halloween, they’re lifesavers). Finally, the poison ivy vines were ordered in bulk on Amazon for like three dollars. I twisted them around my skirt and torso, securing them with safety pins. The poison ivy leaves in my hair we’re pinned down using bobby pines and the few on my face I used eyelash glue on.How about my makeup? I used Hard Candy’s Simply Gorgeous green eyeliner pencil to shade green framing my face, acccenting that with swirls and lines in an effort to emulate vines. Since I couldn’t find my green eyeshadow in the chaos of moving, I used the eyeliner pencil on my eyelids and under eyes as well. I then used the red pencil to line my under eye.Stay festive, fun, and freaky my friends,

XO

Hoosier favorite Badger?

One of my very best friends moved to Bloomington, Indiana a little over a month ago. As young professionals, we lived together a year ago in La Crosse as she was finishing her Master’s Degree and I was working full-time as a journalist. She recently landed a position at the University of Indiana as a counselor and my friend Taylor and I (who I lived with all summer) figured we should visit for an extended weekend before the cold weather and dreadful driving conditions set in.

Upon getting into town on Friday night (a couple weeks ago) after an eight hour drive from La Crosse we went to Cardinal Spirits, a small distillery for a drink before enjoying a late dinner at Uptown Cafe on Kirkwood Street. First off I can’t tell you how delicious and refreshing  our drinks were. If you’re ever in Bloomington I’d highly recommend giving them a try! They make all their own syrups, cut fresh garnishes daily, and have an great overall vibe. Although we didn’t eat while we were there, I’ve read some pretty fantastic reviews about heir food selection; including breakfast options!
Naturally, I came back to Wisconsin with a bottle of coffee liquor because let’s face it, I have a blatant coffee addiction. It’s called Songbird and I shared the photo below so you can see what it looks like (just trust my tastebuds). Although you can’t order any of their delicious spirits online, you can most certainly browse and get an idea of what you may want to try when you do visit!After we finished our drinks we went to Uptown Cafe for a late dinner and WOW. It’s located on East Kirkman Ave and it’s absolutely delicious! I had Cajun flavored, deep fried shrimp with mashed potatoes and sour cream and I was in heaven. It was the perfect serving size too, which didn’t leave me overly stuffed with enough room to enjoy one of my favorite desserts: Creme Brûlée. [SEE THEIR MENU HERE]Saturday a part of my soul slipped away when I placed an IU sticker on my face, but let’s be honest…it was all for the cause. Indiana was playing Michigan that day for homecoming, so luckily I wasn’t totally rooting against my beloved Badgers AND an IU upset over Michigan would have only helped our rankings; unfortunately that didn’t happen. Don’t worry friends, if they would’ve been playing Wisconsin I 100 percent would’ve had Bucky on my face and red and white clothing on. I was also reunited with one of my favorite pups, Benjamin — who is arguably one of the sweetest and most well-behaved dogs I’ve ever known. Plus, he’s a killer running partner! He used to knock out 7 to 8 miles easily with me in Downtown La Crosse.After breakfast and mimosas it was time to Uber downtown for pre-game shenanigans. Now growing up in Wisconsin Rapids, I went to my first Badger Basketball in 5th grade and my first football game at Camp Randall early on in high school. I knew from a young age that the energy, history, and passion that consumes Madison on game day is truly unmatched; however, the older I get, the stronger that realization becomes. Taylor, Liv, and I were all experiencing Hoosier game day for the first time and were shocked at the number of people who didn’t plan on attending the game and those who commented on how full the stadium was (which compared to Camp Randall seemed scarce). Positive aspect? The people we met were wonderful. From the Indiana fans that welcomed the fact we were Badger fans, to students trying to help us learn IU chants, to locals giving us tips about the city’s social scene. But as fate would have it…you can take the girls out of Wisconsin, but you can’t take the Wisconsin out of the girls…Sunday (post Packer game) we went to Oliver Winery in an effort to take our minds off of Aaron Rodger’s injury. Although the winery is located right off the highway, it’s nestled back behind trees and the landscaping is breathtaking. They have winding paths with bushes and flowers, not to mention a beautiful fountain just outside the main entrance to the tasting room and store area. It began in 1960 as a hobby of an Indiana University professor at the time, William Oliver. “Professor Oliver was instrumental in passing legislation allowing for the creation of small wineries in our state. The Indiana Small Winery Act passed in 1971, and Oliver Winery opened in 1972. Sales took off with Camelot Mead, and we’ve been growing ever since. Today, we distribute our award-winning, fruit-forward wines to 18 states and ship across the country.” Fun fact? It’s the largest and oldest winery in the entire state of Indiana and has become Liv’s favorite spot in Bloomington (and now I know why)!Olivia, thanks for being the best host and friend anyone could ask for! I’m a little more at ease now that I got a tour around your new home. Already planning my next visit…Until next time Bloomington,

XO

//P.S. If you live in or around the Bloomington, Indiana area and have restaurants you enjoy or recreational ideas please comment or email me! I’d love to know what I should add to my list for future visits!

A Little Rocksbox Lovin’ 

Hey, YOU! Have you heard about Rocksbox? I’m about to give you a brief overview about just how awesome it is so spare me a few minutes, okay?

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My first Rocksbox! Sophie Harper crystal earrings, Kate Spade cuff, and Kendra Scott necklace.

Rocksbox is a $21 a month subscription that sends you three pieces of jewelry. From there, you can decide if you like the pieces or not. If you fall in love, you keep said item and alert them on your account and then pay for it. However, if you decide you don’t like one or two or perhaps all three of the jewelry pieces you simply put them back in the box and pop it back in the mail with the pre-paid shipping label. BOOM. So how do they decipher what to place into that box and send you? You create a “wish list” on your account by favoriting earrings, rings, necklaces, and bracelets that you like (they suggest that you add 30 or more on your first visit). They carry brands like Kate Spade, Kendra Scott, Sophie Harper, Ava Rose, and Perry Street.

Here are some of my favorites currently on  my wishlist…

Use the code “tiannavanderheixoxo” to get your first month completely free! Give it a try and let me know what you think. // SIGN UP HERE: Rocksbox

Stay stylish my friends,

XO