• Room Redo Up on Copy Cat Chic!

  • 4 years and a puppy

Monday, September 30, 2013

Baby Broussard is here!

You guys--last week was a whirlwind. A really good whirlwind. My first 'niece' arrived on Tuesday, 3 days and 32 hours late but she's finally here! And she's really beautiful and I am in a glass case of emotion over her. She has so many funny faces and expressions, and she reminds me of a baby dinosaur the way she sticks her tongue out all the time. She's perfect in every way and we are all so in love with this little bitty girl. Sarah and Travis deserve a medal for making something this good.

Say hi to Baby Charlie!!

Charlotte Emerson Broussard was born September 24 at 11:21pm and I've been floating on a cloud ever since! Sarah had to work really hard for a really long time to get her here, but I think we can all agree: totally worth it.

Auntie Hillary beaming over Baby Charlie

Just a little baby nugget! I remember when my little brother Jack could fit in my lap this way too...now he's got about 6 inches to go before he's taller than me. Time flies.

Auntie Val falling in love

A textbook case of baby-holding, courtesy of Jake <3

Uncle Scott and Baby Charlie having a moment. What a little peach.

Owen saying hello to his betrothed, 'Char-Wee'

Big sister Bailey

Pan comforting me after I realized Charlie can't come and live in my pocket forever.

I feel like I'm going to be doing that I'm-so-in-love sigh until Charlie is 45 (and changing my diapers for a change). Just kidding, I don't change diapers.

Sarah and Trav--you guys are just the best. I'm so honored to be able to share this with you. And thank you thank you thank you for this little ray of baby sunshine in my life. I didn't even know how much I needed it.


Sunday, September 29, 2013

I lost my head in San Francisco

The worst part about renovating a house and moving are the things that get put on the back burner for an embarrassing amount of time. Things that would normally be very important to you, by default, have to become less important. One of those back burner things was uploading my photos from my San Francisco trip back in March. I went for a work conference, but then ended up staying an extra week because Cali is my jam. My mom flew up and we had an amazing time exploring the city, drinking ourselves silly in Sonoma and stuffing our faces in Yountville. No matter where I go, California is a great time. It's one of those places that just feeds my soul. Every time I'm there, I feel like this:

I'm so proud to be a Texan, but California is magic. The sun is (mostly) always shining, the weather is always warm (or just the right amount of cool) and don't even get me started on the landscape. If LA doesn't suit, drive to Orange County. If San Francisco is too rainy, drive to Healdsburg. If you're sick of the hills and plants, drive to the desert. If you're sick of driving, go hiking. Or surfing. Or just lay in the sand and take a nap. And in case you were wondering (and because I base many of my life decisions and core beliefs on rap songs), I can assure you that California really does know how to party.

Hope you enjoy these photos of the San Francisco & Alcatraz portion of my trip!

(Pro tip: aside from the fact that taking photos with your iPad looks dumb--the picture quality is terrible. Just use your phones, guys.)

The view from my room at the Fairmont. The hotel gods smiled upon me and granted me a room on the 19th floor. It was glorious.

More to come!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Kitchen Lessons

As I write this, my bestie Sarah's first baby is due in about five minutes. Miss Charlotte looks like she's going to be very late for her own party, but I guess it's her party and she can arrive when she wants. I'm no doctor.

Anyway, I of course was cooking up a storm this week in my kitchen so I can stock Sarah's fridge with food so that she won't have to do anything but pop a tray in the oven when it's time to eat (apparently babies relieve you of the ability to take basic care of yourself). And while I was cooking, I learned not one, not two, but THREE lessons in the kitchen, and I thought it was important to share them. I so rarely enjoy big revelations in the kitchen anymore, that when I learn this many things at once, I do a happy dance and tell everyone!

Lesson One: stuffed shells are the fool's version of lasagna.
As I was stuffing something like my 900th pasta shell and cursing the name of everyone I've ever known, a realization dawned on me. Only an idiot would make stuffed shells instead of lasagna. Preparing the ingredients takes the same amount of time either way, yet assembling the lasagna takes maybe 5 minutes as opposed to the fortnight required by the shells. Don't be like me. Make lasagna.

Lesson Two: stop trying to make a bechamel with light butter happen. It's not going to happen.

I'm apparently in some sort of a hibernation-prep cooking stage right now--leave me alone--so of course I had to make bacon macaroni. Of course. I made my noodles, grated my cheese, cooked my bacon in the oven like it's meant to be cooked, and I melted my butter in the pan for the bechamel. But when I added the flour, I was immediately rewarded with small weird flour balls that wouldn't be whisked, cooked, or otherwise coaxed into a bechamel base. Against my better judgement I poured in my milk and after several minutes of furiously whisking my milk and flour ball concoction, nothing was happening. I called my mom, and after several minutes of her reassuring me over my cooking skills, we realized the mistake: I used light butter. It works for everything else, and it never occurred to me that this would be the one thing I would actually need full fat butter for. Oh, how the mighty fell last Thursday night.

Lesson Two Continued: you can make a bechamel with mascarpone
I opened my fridge, helplessly wondering if I could build the macaroni sauce base with anything else and contemplating a late night run to the store, when I saw...a tub of mascarpone! Guys, I got super excited about that possibility. I substitute mascarpone for butter in a ton of stuff (my favorite being garlic butter for artichokes) and it has a very high fat content, so I figured I'd give it a go. Worked like a charm. I strained the flour balls back out of my milk, washed out my pan, and put a knob of mascarpone in the pan. As it was melting down I crossed my fingers and toes, then added the flour. As soon as I started whisking I knew! Perfection! I added the milk and made a beautiful bechamel and thus, a giant tub of bacon macaroni with a panko crust. I ate it straight from the pan (for stress reasons) and thus Sarah must never know it existed. Ssshhh.

Anyways, I hope you file these lessons away in your brain for one of your "oh shit" kitchen moments. And if you have any similar revelations, send em my way. I'll post recipes at a later time, like when I re-make them and take pictures instead of anger-throwing a whisk across the kitchen.


Saturday, September 21, 2013

Buy This Now: Gold Bar Cart

YOU GUYS!!!!!!!!

This is the best Saturday I've ever had. Wanna know why? I will tell you why.

I just ordered a bar cart. Exactly like the ones I've been eyeing for an embarrassing amount of years, and exactly like the ones that are always too expensive to actually pull the trigger on. The high of this purchase is about to make me fall out of my chair!!!

And of course, it's from Target's Threshold line. I know everyone agrees, but along with its designer collaborations, the Threshold line is one of the best business decisions Target has ever made. Everything they do is so good! And for the most part, the quality is much better than you'd expect (and for the lower quality stuff, they definitely lower the price).

Let's imagine what it will look like when I put stuff on it:

Of course mine will be covered in booze--ain't NO room on that cart for flowers. But maybe that can be our secret, yeah? SO EXCITED!!

The best part is the price--$130! With shipping it gets a little more expensive, I think mine was about $25 for shipping to Austin. But considering all my other [lovely and drool-worthy] options--Society Social anyone!?--are $500+ for the basic cart, it almost makes me feel like I'm stealing. And seriously, even when I've had enough wine to think I could actually hit 'purchase' on SS's website, the cart I want is always, always, ALWAYS sold out. The internet is just too full of ladies with fabulous taste, I guess. Go getcha some of this bar cart goodness before you talk yourself out of it!


Friday, September 20, 2013

New Room Redo Up On Copy Cat Chic!

Happy Friday you guys!! If you or anyone you know is currently in the baby-making biz (ahem, Sarah) then you should check out my latest room redo of this drool-worthy nursery over on Copy Cat Chic!

Happy hunting!

Thursday, September 19, 2013

DIY Ice Cream Cone Garland on Malone Street Studios!

You guys, I just about died when I saw this:

My bestie and college roommate Lisa, of the fantastic new blog Malone Street Studios, created this insanely cute paper ice cream cone banner for her little niece's ice cream social themed birthday party. The whole party was crazy cute, but this DIY she just posted put me over the edge. PAPER ICE CREAM CONE BANNER DIY. I rest my case.

The problem is, I don't have kids and I certainly don't wanna be that weirdo with a lot of paper ice cream cones strung across my living room. So someone do me a favor--make some babies, make this banner. Easy peasy.

In addition to lots of custom art, Lisa also makes sensational (and so affordable!) customized chalkboard signs that sell like hotcakes:

Can you even? The best part is she's hosting some great giveaways this week so be sure to check those out.

I know I'm bragging on Lisa right now, but I'm just so proud of her! She's worked her very shapely bum off this year getting Malone Street Studios off the ground, and I know her talent and drive are gonna take her to the moon and back. Did I mention she just got engaged and now I get to go to Sicily to cry my eyes out at her wedding? Because I totally am.

In other news, I think my friends are ganging up on me to make me have kids. Help.