Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas from Prep Northwest

I love Christmas. I think it's safe to say that most of us who celebrate the holiday do, too! Even though I work in retail and deal with crazy holiday shoppers, I love the energy that December brings. It's cheery, full of love, and people seem to walk with a little more spring in their step. In honor of the holiday, I thought I would share a few of my favorite photos from this year and a few of my family traditions! 

Every year on Christmas Eve, my mom's side of the family gets together for the holiday. We always have a really great buffet-style dinner and open the presents we've gifted to each other. It's really great to be able to spend it with my mom's side of my family and my nephews (I have the cutest nephews around, not to brag). It's become a really special tradition! We don't do pjs or anything - when my mom moved here from the Philippines, I don't think they knew it was really a thing. But that's fine with me, I love how we do Christmas.

Christmas day is spent with my immediate family. This year, my brother wants to open our presents in the evening instead of in the morning, so we have something to look forward to (haha). I think we're gonna try! I'm also lucky enough to be invited over for dinner at Chris' with his parents and to stop by to visit with my best friend Paul's family. 

Family (and friend!) traditions are fun, unique, and interesting. Every family does Christmas differently, so it's fun to hear about and experience how another family celebrates. If you have special traditions, share them with me! That kind of sappy stuff makes my heart glow.

How fun is this "balloon" ornament?

Every year, the Sheraton hotel hosts a gingerbread house contest, and the "houses" are always amazing! This year, the theme was "Christmas Songs" - my two favorites were the Seattle and Hawaiian ones!

Merry Christmas everyone, and Happy Holidays!

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Recipe: Super Simple Fudge

What would the holiday season be without baking? Christmas is the perfect excuse to go on a baking spree and bake every delicious Pinterest recipe there is (trust me, there are plenty to last you the season). I love baking, but because I work, I don't have a lot of spare time to spend in the kitchen. I recently remembered a super easy fudge recipe that I used to make with my dad when I was younger and decided it was time to start making some again! I made a batch for my best friend's birthday and a couple of batches for Chris' parents. It's super easy, super delicious, and makes a great gift.

3 cups chocolate chips (I prefer milk)
14 oz sweetened condensed milk (about 1 can)
a splash of vanilla
a pinch of salt
a handful of nuts (optional, I used walnuts)
a foil-lined pan (I used a bread pan)
a spatula
a stovetop pot

Pour your chocolate chips in a pot on the stove, melting them. Make sure to keep the temperature between medium and medium low - burnt chocolate isn't very good.
Add the sweetened condensed milk, splash of vanilla, and pinch of salt.
Use your spatula to mix all the ingredients together, being consistent to avoid burning.
After all the chocolate is melted into the condensed milk, pour into a foil-lined pan.
Let sit for a couple of hours - I cool mine in the fridge overnight!
Remove from foil and use a sharp knife to cut.

See? It's really the simplest recipe ever, is absolutely delicious, and makes a great gift. Make sure to tweet at me or mention me in your Instagram pictures if you make this recipe - I'd love to see your adaptations!

Happy holidays!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Living Space Inspiration with Modani

couch  ||  pink pillow  ||  coffee table  ||  pouf  ||  chair (similar)  ||  mirror  ||  bookshelf  ||  pillow  ||  vase
(similar)  ||  ottoman  ||  neon pillow

Isn't it exciting to picture yourself in your future home, decorating it however you'd like, and creating a really beautiful space? I know I'm excited. Lately I've been on the search for a house or apartment in north Seattle to rent (eek!) next fall. I really love Seattle, especially U District (where the University of Washington is), and want to find my own place in the city. That being said, I've really been in a decorating craze. I haven't even moved out yet, but I still find myself shopping for home goods... I blame Pinterest for all the home inspiration.

As a 19 going on 20 year old, I really can't be picky about big ticket items, like furniture. It's definitely possible to create a beautiful and trendy space on a budget, but that's not what this post is about. I'm sharing today my picks from Modani, an online furniture store! They offer a wide range of items, from lighting, to bed frames, to outdoor canopies (swoon). When I spotted this couch, I fell in love. I love the idea of having a chic, minimalistic living space with bright pops of color (like these pillows). Plus, a huge bookshelf is the perfect way to functionally display your fun decorations!

Are you as into home decorating as I am?

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Over the Knee Boots for Under $150

Happy Saturday! I usually don't post on the weekends, but given my lack of posts the past two weeks, I figured it would be a good time to share my latest fashion need want: over the knee boots. Over the knee boots have been popping up all over the place. I used to be very hesitant, but after seeing so many bloggers and photos on Pinterest (I've pinned some here) featuring the tall beauties, I've fallen in love. Paired with an all black ensemble or with a blanket scarf, they create chic, easy, and comfortable looks. Tall boots are a favorite of mine - they are so easy to style and are the perfect fall and winter touch!

I've compiled a list of over the knee boots that are under $150. There are times I can't justify spending over $100 on shoes, but if they're high quality boots I know I'll wear, I know I'll get good use out of them. 

Have you styled over the knee boots? What colors are your favorite?

Monday, December 1, 2014

Absence + Links

It feels like it's been a long time since I've been able to really sit down and blog. Don't get me wrong - I love my blog and being a part of the blogging community - but I haven't been able to prioritize writing and reading posts the way I'd like. Working full time has it's perks: I'm making myself money, it's great experience, and my coworkers are awesome. The downside? Not feeling like I have all the time I need to do what I'd like (like blogging). It's crazy - I'm 19 and feel like I don't have enough time to be me. 

With the holiday season coming up, I only see myself having less time to "be me." Working retail in a popular mall in December is a crazy time (it's December already?!). There are constantly people who have questions, clothes to fold, and lines to stand in. Don't even mention mall parking... I'm hoping I'll have more time to shoot outfits, create recipe posts, and simply write more as my store gets more associates. 

Anyways, I'm here today to share some fun links I've found. A lot of bloggers do these on a weekly basis (I tried, couldn't do it - I don't really like having a blogging schedule) so I thought I would share one this week!

This Instagram is run by a woman living in Seattle - it's all about cute coffee shops, cafes, and shops that she likes! Her feed is too perfect. 

Okay, how cute is this sleeping mask? I can't stand wearing them but I might need this anyways... 

I'm dying to try this Pumpkin Soup recipe (featured on The Undeniable Report!). It sounds like the perfect way to warm up from all this cold winter weather.

Um, #brosbeingbasic - might be the funniest thing you see this week.

The best food bank donation list I've seen - especially with the holiday season in full swing, donating is so important. Spread that holiday cheer by helping your community (I know I will be!).

Forget Pinterest (just kidding, I love Pinterest). DwellingGawker is the way to go (but seriously, I love both). 

Two things I need in my closet right now: this fur snood and this fluffy scarf.

For the other public health lovers out there, a studded pill as a needle alternative. Crazy, or?

Have a great week, everyone! Happy Monday!

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