Archives for October 2016

The Fawn | A Halloween Look

I am beyond excited to share this styled Halloween shoot with y’all! This Fawn Halloween makeup was so much fun to put together. I used everyday makeup products so this look is 100% easy and budget friendly to recreate. I adore woodland creature halloween makeup. There is a magical quality to dressing up like a gentle fawn, or other critters that live stealthily in the woods. None are quite as cute as a fawn though!


I have to admit, I was going to make some antlers to go with this look, but, then I realized that only bucks have antlers! A female baby deer with antlers seemed like a bit of a stretch ūüėČ Instead, I put together a super fun fall leaf hairpiece to add an extra feminine touch and a bit of color.

Halloween is just six short days away! [ Where did October go exactly?? ]. Would you believe that this is the first time I have ever done a halloween look? I’m twenty-five years old and I’m just now experiencing the halloween costume fun. There is a reason behind that though. When I was a child, my family never celebrated halloween because of our faith. The origin of halloween does not honor God – so we chose not to celebrate it. I still don’t celebrate it as an adult, but, I could not pass up the opportunity to dress up and not have anyone question why ūüėČ



Dress: Loft
Lace Top: Loft
Shoes: Madden Girl
Hair Piece: Family Dollar [ diy ]
Hair: Garnier
Makeup: BareMinerals | Almay | Essence | Clinique
What are you dressing up as for Halloween? Have you tried a Halloween look like this? Will you give this makeup a try?
With love,

If you liked this classy Fawn Halloween Makeup/Look please share share share! Pin it, tweet it, Facebook it – whatever strikes your fancy!

Pumpkin Spice Espresso Muffins With Sugared Oat Cinnamon Crumble Topping

Pumpkin Espresso muffins are the quintessential muffins of autumn. I infused espresso into gluten free pumpkin spice muffin batter and topped each muffin with a brown sugar oat crumble. The topping gets nice and crunchy giving these muffins a wonderful bite on top. These pumpkin spice espresso muffins have bold flavor and are incredibly moist.


My tastebuds are more than ready for the flavors of fall; squash soup, molasses cookies, warm cinnamon, a little brown sugar sweetness. Most of all though I am looking forward to munching on anything and everything pumpkin! Pumpkin spice.. pumpkin spice everywhere! I am all about pumpkin this season y’all. Pumpkin cookies, pies, cakes, breads, ice cream – you name it!

I made a few attempts at the perfect pumpkin spice muffins, but, something was missing. Then it hit me.. Coffee. More specifically, espresso. The dark bitter quality of espresso supports and enhances the pumpkin spice flavor, and the crunchy sugared oat crumble on top adds the most delicious burst of sweetness.

Prep Time: 10 minutes | Bake Time: 15-18 minutes | Makes: 12 large muffins
1 1/2 cups Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Flour
1/2 cup brown sugar – packed
1/4 cup coconut sugar
1 cup pumpkin puree – make sure it’s pumpkin only
3 tbsp espresso powder
2 tsp cocoa powder – unsweetened
3 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 1/2 tsp ground cloves
2 tbsp pumpkin pie spice
3 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1/4 cup coconut milk
1/8 cup apple butter
1/2 cup coconut oil melted
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup walnuts – chopped
Oat Crumble:
3 tbsp brown sugar
1 1/2 tbsp steel cut oats
1 1/2 tsp espresso powder
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
Preheat oven to 375ňö and line muffin tins.
In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together brown sugar,  coconut sugar, pumpkin, apple butter, coconut oil, milk, vanilla extract, and eggs. Fold in flour, espresso powder, unsweetened cocoa, spices, salt, and chopped walnuts. Fill each lined muffin tin with two soup-spoonfuls of batter and top generously with brown sugar oat crumble.
Top Tip: sprinkle oat crumble in the bottom of each lined muffin tin, before spooning in the batter, for an extra touch of sweetness!

Bake for 15-18 ¬†minutes. Toothpick test the muffins – if the toothpick comes out clean, they’re done! Remove from oven and top with more oat crumble.

These espresso pumpkin muffins are warm, dark, sweet, and rich.¬†Holy ham fat are they good!¬†Coffee is a morning essential, and pumpkin, well, that’s an Autumn essential. The blending of the two makes for a decadent artisan muffin that will rock your socks off!
Save and Print for later
Have your tried the pumpkin and espresso combination? What is your favorite fall dessert? What pumpkin recipes do you love?

Have a beautiful day, 


4 Crucial Tips For No Fuss Curly Hair Care

Let’s talk hair. My coily curls like to deflate in humidity, frizz when there’s static in the air, and form into dreadlocks for no apparent reason!¬†It’s madness I tell you! Madness!¬†Curly hair, whether it’s fine or thick, can take on a life of its own,¬†and¬†before you know it you look like Merida from Brave.¬†With a little tender love and care, your curls will be your best friend – your bouncy, coily, voluminous best friend!
The Right Shampoo & Conditioner

The key to swoon worthy curls is nourishing your hair properly, first from the inside [ eat those veggies, girl! ], and then from the outside. Take a stroll down the hair care aisle and you’ll see an endless array of products promising you the shiniest, thickest, most voluminous hair of your life. As alluring as all of that sounds, the claims made on that bottle of shampoo or conditioner are one size fits all and that simply won’t cut it. Why? Because that hair care system isn’t designed for¬†your¬†hair.

Hair care isn’t a catch all. Your curly strands are unique and they need to be cared for with attention to what they need to be fully nourished and strengthened. My curls had become dry, deflated, and felt heavy after washing, and so I turned to Function Of Beauty hair care as a last resort. My customized shampoo and conditioner from Function Of Beauty restored my curls, and revived my hair’s bounce, shine, and texture. What started as a last resort ended up being a life saver, or¬†hair¬†saver!


So how does this hair care system work? Function Of Beauty uses three simple quizzes to learn a bit about your locks, and then they create your custom shampoo and conditioner based on the information that you provide.

It goes a bit like this: Build hair profile by choosing hair type and structure > Select hair goals > Personalize color, scent, and name. It is an easily system that helps their team determine what needs to go into your shampoo and conditioner so that your hair gets the most out of the hair care system. The result is a shampoo and conditioner that is as unique as you/your hair. Say bye felicia to generic catch all hair care!

|| Build your own hair profile here and start nourishing those locks!

Skip The Towel Dry
Towel drying curly hair pretty much guarantees a head full of frizz. Grab a 100% cotton t-shirt instead and gently scrunch curls to get any excess water out. The cotton t-shirt will pull out the excess water and help shape curls before drying.
Cool-Air Double Drying
This sounds a little funky, but, it is the most effective way to dry curls so that they retain a tight curl all day. This method of drying is simple and is a form of setting.
The easiest way to double dry your hair with cool air is to set up a small table fan a couple of feet away from where you are drying your hair – set it on its low/medium speed setting and let the cool air gently blow around your hair while blow drying your hair with a diffuser. As you work around your head with a blowdryer/diffuser combo the cool air from the fan cools down the heated curls and not only helps them dry faster, but, sets the curls! This method of drying should cut about 5 minutes off of your hair drying routine. The time can differ slightly depending on how thick your hair is.
|| Bonus: This hair drying method works for all types of hair! Straight, wavy, fine, thick.. you name it! Drying hair this way will shorten the drying time and lock in whatever style you choose.
Aloe & Coconut Hair Mask 
Curly hair, because of its structure, tends to be dryer and needs more conditioning than other textures. A simple hair mask can do wonders to help remedy curls in need of moisture! Combine aloe vera gel and coconut oil to create a simple hair mask that will leave your curls conditioned and smooth!
Combine 1 tablespoon each of aloe vera gel and coconut oil to create this hair nourishing mask. Add a pinch of cinnamon, or 2-3 drops of your favorite essential oil for a wonderful scent. Depending on the thickness of your hair, you may need to increase the amount of aloe and coconut oil.
Facts: Aloe vera contains enzymes that repair hair, promote hair growth, and deeply condition hair. Aloe vera has a chemical makeup very similar to keratin – it rejuvenates hair, prevents breakage, and gives it more¬†elasticity. Coconut oil’s vitamins and essential fatty acids nourish the scalp and condition hair, leaving it softer, smoother, and stronger from the root.
Apply mask to roots with a tint brush and work down to tips of hair. In a pinch you can use your fingers and apply the mask the same way that you would apply conditioner in the shower. The tint brush applies a more even coating on the hair, but, the mask will still do its job with either type of application!
Hair care, for curly hair and all other types of hair, doesn’t have to be a struggle. With easy tips and tricks like these your hair care routine can be simple and down right fun! Use natural hair masks and a shampoo & conditioner that is designed to work for your hair, and use styling shortcuts and time savers that work for your life! Most importantly, embrace your hair! Love it for its frizzy days and for its ‘take on the town’ days. Love your mane, girls!
What is your number one hair care tip/trick? Have you tried any of these tricks before? What is the biggest struggle you have with hair care? Let’s talk hair in the comments!
Have a beautiful day,

Double Trouble: Chocolate Orange Bundt Cake and Orange SugarCookiesWith Dark Chocolate Glaze

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias Inc. and The Coca-Cola Company. All opinions are mine alone.    #WickedFantaFun   #CollectiveBias


It’s the little things in life, I tell you. The little, sweet, chocolatey things! I am so excited for fall and halloween recipes! Fall is my favorite time of year – the crisp air, warm cocoa, and cozy fireside chats do wonders for the soul. My family has never really celebrated Halloween [ except for that one time I dressed up as Alice and made a bomb White Rabbit costume for a friend. But, I digress. ]. Rather than avoiding the holiday altogether I try to marry harvest happiness with a little bit of sophisticated spookiness.

..It’s spooktacular ūüėČ

To kick off the fall/halloween recipes [ falloween! It’s late as I write this, don’t judge my word merges ūüėČ ] I am sharing a double trouble recipe: Orange Chocolate Bundt Cake PLUS Orange Sugar Cookies with a Dark Chocolate Glaze. The secret to these wickedly delicious recipes? Fanta¬ģ¬†Orange Soda. That’s right, good old soda pop! The simplicity of this recipe, and the bonus orange sugar cookie recipe down below, makes these fall/halloween treats ideal for a fun get together with friends or family. Or both!

I popped over to Family Dollar to get everything that I needed for these fun and scrumptious halloween inspired recipes! Family Dollar is one of my favorite stores to shop for fun table-scape decor and recipe ingredient additions, when I’m on a budget. You can find everything you need for a recipe or party without breaking the bank, and you can shop more deals on Family Dollar’s SmartCoupons portal¬†– y’all know how much I like to save money!

To keep things simple I made this cake & sugar cookies using a mix base that I bought at the store.  Semi-homemade recipes are great when you need to be zippy in the kitchen. I used gluten free mixes, but, these recipes work with classic wheat based mixes as well.

Prep Time: 5 minutes  |  Bake Time: 25 minutes  |  Serves: 8-10
For the cake
1 package of gluten free chocolate cake mix [ you can use your favorite scratch recipe if you prefer ]
4 eggs
1/3 cup of olive oil
1/2 tsp orange zest
1 cup of Fanta Orange Soda
For the glaze
1 cup of powdered sugar
1/2 tsp of vanilla extract
2-6 tblsp of water
Kitchen Tools:
mixing bowl
spatula or whisk
bundt pan – greased with coconut oil

Preheat oven to 375ňö and grease bundt pan with coconut oil.

1. Combine cake mix, eggs, oil, orange zest, and Fanta Orange Soda. Mix well.

2. Pour cake batter into greased bundt pan and sprinkle top with coconut sugar and orange zest. Bake according to cake mix directions. About 25 minutes or until done in center. Use a skewer to test the center.

3. Remove cake from pan and set aside to cool completely. Remove cake top so the cake sits flat.

4. Make the sugar glaze Рcombine the powdered sugar, water, and Fanta Orange Soda. Whisk until glaze is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.  You might need to adjust the quantities a bit to get it just right. Spoon glaze all over the top of the cake. Top with orange zest and coconut sugar!

Slice, feast, and enjoy!

I love you guys so much that I have included a bonus Orange Sugar Cookie recipe for your fall/halloween entertaining. Or you know for your own indulgence! They are soft and sweet, sugary and chocolatey! All of the tasty things that we crave.
I know, I know, they sound delicious. You can cyber hug me if you want ūüėČ
I returned to the Fanta Orange soda for these cookies and it was a phenomenal decision. Fanta is a 100% natural soft drink inspired by real deal fruit flavors, so I feel good about using it in these recipes. It comes in eight super tasty flavors so you never know what soda cake or soda cookie i’ll come up with next! I couldn’t find the halloween ‘Noma Bar’ designed packaging, but, I had some wickedly good fun anyway! Look for the one-stop Fanta Halloween display at Family Dollar to make shopping quick and easy!
For this sugar cookie recipe I went with big and bold. Who doesn’t love a giant sugar cookie dipped in dark chocolate!
Prep Time: 5 minutes  |  Bake Time: 12-15 minutes  |  Makes: 24 large cookies
For the cookies
1 package of gluten free sugar cookie mix [ I used Pillsbury ]
1 stick of butter softened or 1/2 cup of margarine
1 egg
2 tablespoons of Fanta Orange soda
1/4 tsp orange zest
For the dark chocolate ganache
1/2 cup of dark chocolate chips [ I use Ghirardelli 60% dark ]
1/4 cup Fanta Orange soda
Kitchen Tools:
Mixing bowl
baking sheet
parchment paper
measuring spoons/cups
small pot + bowl [ for double boiler ]
Preheat oven to 350ňö and line baking sheet with parchment paper.
1. Combine cookie mix, egg, softened butter, and orange soda in a medium mixing bowl. Mix until dough is soft and formed.
2. Form cookie dough into 2-inch balls and place on parchment lined baking sheet. Sprinkle top with sugar and bake for 10-12 minutes.
3. Remove cookies and place on wire rack to cool completely.
4. In a double boiler, melt the dark chocolate chips and orange soda together Рstirring constantly. About 5 minutes.
5. Holding the cookies from the edge, dip the top into the dark chocolate ganache. Twist and lift up cookie for clean edges. Sprinkle tops with sugar and allow chocolate to harden. About 30 minutes.
Share and enjoy!
These wickedly delicious Orange Sugar Cookies and Orange Chocolate cake pair beautifully with chocolate ice cream! Serve up one or both with a couple of generous scoops of your favorite chocolate ice cream and savor every bite! These recipes are quick and easy, making them perfect your fall or halloween get together!
What are some of your favorite recipes using Fanta? Have you tried a soda cake or cookies yet? Do you shop at Family Dollar for your party planning needs? If so, what are some of your favorite goods to shop for?
With Love,
PS РShop the Family Dollar SmartCoupons Portal and save $1 when you buy (1) Fanta 12-pack 12oz cans AND (1) Red Baron pizza 12oz or larger, with digital Smartcoupon. ( 10/24/16 Р10/31/16 ) 

6 Tips For Hosting An Elegant Bridal Shower

Hosting a bridal shower for the bride to be is an honor and a bundle of fun – Who doesn’t love a party, right? Though it can be undoubtedly stressful trying to coordinate between what the bridal party thinks the bride wants and what she actually hopes for, there are a few simple steps you can take to make it a success – And dare I say it.. the best bridal shower ever!

I had the pleasure of hosting my best girlfriend’s bridal shower recently and boy was it a wild ride. Opinions were abundant, ideas flying around like they had wings, and stress, well, that was plentiful too. More than anything though it was fun! I have sweet memories that I can carry with me always from our sophisticated and loving celebration.

Today I am sharing my top six tips for hosting a bridal shower to help your event go smoothly! No two bridal showers are the same, but, keeping a few things in mind while planning any bridal shower can make the process so much more enjoyable and ensure that it goes off without a hitch.


Make A Great First Impression.
Before guests ever get to the bridal shower you want to give them an idea of what the bridal shower will be like. Invest in high quality, beautifully designed bridal shower invitations to give guests a hint at the elegance to come.

Start here for good quality & elegant invites: Minted Stationery

First impression don’t stop there. You want to welcome guests into the venue, no matter the size, with pretty details that represent the couple being celebrated, and set the tone for the style and attitude of the shower. Place pictures, a welcome sign, flowers, balloons, or sweet treats at the entrance to welcome guests in with style and elegance!

Use The Wedding Colors.
One of the easiest ways to ensure less stress and create an elegant bridal shower is to use the color palette of the wedding. Theme’s can be super fun, and you can still bring theme elements in, but, sticking with the wedding color palette for bridal shower plates/napkins/cups, flowers, balloons, table decor, and even decorated treats will build a cohesive look that hints at the beautiful wedding to come!

Light Bites Go A Long Way.
Food is one of the very best ways to bring people together. Most of the time, bridal showers include women from different circles of friends, and different age ranges. A great bridal shower menu can make all of the difference in bringing women together. Generally speaking you want to keep three things in mind when planning the perfect bridal shower menu.

  • The flavor palette
  • The type of food
  • The bridal shower color theme

Consider the guests varied taste and plan your menu to fit within general appeal to all tastes and appetites, while impressing guests with delicious flavors! A bridal shower is a great place to put a sophisticated spin on the party menu. Finger food is one of the best choices for bridal shower food. Mini quiches, chicken salad, pasta salad, and fruit/cheese bites are great examples of easy, crowd pleasing finger foods. You can easily provide multiples options with finger food – anything that is easily eaten with just a plate and a fork will do! Stack your menu with a variety of finger foods that compliment each other, yet, hit the basic points: protein, savories, fruit, and sweets.

Start here for easy unique & sophisticated light bites and sweets:
| Fig Onion Honey Muffins  by Feast + West
| Asparagus Ricotta Puff Pastry Tart  by A Joyfully Mad Kitchen
| Sweet Potato Bake  by A Savory Feast
| Espresso Brownie Sandwich Cookies  by Broma Bakery


Play A Game and Shower Guests With Favors.
Once your guests have had a chance to eat and socialize get everyone’s attention and play a fun wedding themed game or two, and shower guests with thoughtful, useful favors! Favors add to the fun for guests and are a nice way to say thank you!

Cut/Serve The Cake While Presents Are Being Opened.
The process of opening bridal shower gifts can take over the entire shower. Everyone likes to enjoy this time and see what the bride received! It is the ideal time to cut and serve the cake – ensuring that the process is equally fun and deliciously sweet!


Do Enjoy The Bridal Shower Yourself.
During the time of eating, games and gift opening, take a step back and enjoy the shower too! After putting in all of the time and effort to make sure it goes off without a hitch you need to enjoy those happy moments with the bride and celebrate with everyone!

Where these tips helpful? Have you hosted a bridal shower before? What are some of your go-to tips for entertaining? Share your tips and experiences in the comments!

With love,

Follow along on Instagram @thenoshlife

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