Browsing Tag

valentine’s day

1 In life/ lifestyle

my funny valentine

I almost can’t believe that this year makes a dozen Valentine’s Day I’ve spent with this sweet man. What’s that they say about time flying when you’re having fun?


 Granted, we haven’t always celebrated on February 14th- we spent several years in a long distance relationship, and I don’t always get a lot of say over my pageant travel schedule. This Valentine’s Day, I’m in Dallas at a pageant with my girls and moms while he’s at home and work in LA.



Celebrating love a little early, we spent a sunshiny day with the fabulous Nicole of Nicole Renard Photography, and I just love all the sweet Valentine’s Day shots she captured. Nicole and I have several collaborations in the works for this year, so you’ll be seeing more of her around the blog for sure.



David got me this bright red scooter as wedding present, and I’ll be honest that he rides it all the time while I’m pretty wimpy about it still. I need to take a safety course before I feel road-ready solo, but I feel totally secure and love riding as his passenger…. Look Ma, no hands!


Because it seems like no Valentine’s Day is complete without at least a little sappiness, I’ve got a dozen reasons I’m glad David’s my husband and Valentine. #smugmarrieds



He’s funny as hell. Obviously, as an improvisor and comedian, making people laugh is his wheelhouse. But I have a picky sense of humor, and am very often not amused when others are rolling with laughter. Yet David cracks me up on a regular basis.


He indulges my quirks. Far from typical, I’d prefer a pet goat to a puppy. I would rather arrange my own grocery-store flowers than receive a fancy bouquet, and regularly have power tools on my gift list. Weird is my way, and he’s happy to oblige.


He believes in me religiously. Though I wish it wasn’t the case, I can be very insecure- yet it’s much easier to believe in yourself when someone else believes in me first. He always does, and never hesitates to tell me so.


 Those blue eyes. Lawd- deep, piercing, practically iridescent as they change with his moods… I’m already beseeching the universe for a baby with their daddy’s eyes. (Someday…. don’t get too excited people.)


Our shared history. We’ve been together just about our entire adult lives, so there’s a lot of memories over those dozen years. There’s something special about having grown up and evolved together- and to know that he ‘knew me when” and has loved me through my worst and best.


He’s practically my personal lightning rod. He can pull me from the depths of a panic attack with a few firm words, ground me in a stressful situation with just a look or a hug. For someone as prone to anxiety as me, his ability to gauge and regulate my mood is an immeasurable gift.


He’s stellar at backing me up and bailing me out. Whether it’s sous-chefing and doing the chopping and kitchen prep, masterminding pageant schedules and invoicing, or problem-solving a crisis, I know I just need to say the word and he’s got me.


He’s so amazing with children. Watching him with our clients, friends’s babies, and even random kids in the grocery store, I’m already impressed by his patience and affection… He’s going to be an incredible father.


He’s so patient and tolerant when it comes to my whims. Whether it’s trying every flavor at the ice cream store, being a superior Instagram husband, or spoiling me with a glass-fronted display case for my shoes, he rarely puts a stop to my shenanigans without good reason.


He’s an over-the-top partner. In a world where an even 50-50 split can be a struggle, he never fails to go above and beyond, make me feel special, and spoil me rotten.


He’s a hottie. Sorrynotsorry if that’s totally shallow, but it’s true. More often than not, I find myself ogling… He’s distracting! And, like fine wine- instead of getting paunchy in his thirties, he’s getting stronger and sexier.


Our future. It gives me the warm fuzzies just to think about the lifetimes together ahead of us. What a wonderful thought it is that some of the best days of our lives haven’t happened yet.


SHOP THIS LOOK:  anthropologie dress, Lulu’s booties, Charles David polka dot pumps (on sale!)  David’s suspenders are Zara.


“Lucky I’m in love with my best friend
Lucky to have been where I have been
Lucky to be coming home again.” 

– Jason Mraz



0 In festivities/ lifestyle

spoiling my valentines, long distance


One of the things I like least about living in Los Angeles is that the majority of my closest girlfriends don’t. Several are still in New Orleans, others in Denver and DC, NYC and Chicago. If we were all in LA, I’d totally be hosting a festive floral Galentine’s lunch, but I had to be a little more creative and employ USPS to spoil my sweeties this Valentine’s Day.


Planning ahead, I had scored a tarte lipsurgence gift set at ulta during their awesome holiday sale. I broke it up, choosing one for each girl, and used my Silhouette to cut little triangular boxes out of pink glitter damask and chevron card stock, as well as some recycled Vera Bradley file folders. I also included a nail polish or pair of mini polishes, and  some classic conversation hearts!

galentines-polish-boxes galentines-gold-sticker galentines-addressing-envelope

Finding any excuse to practice my handlettering, I had a little fun decorating them. I’m a total Targetaholic, and am still loving these gold-and-white washi tapes and labels from Sugar Paper‘s holiday collection. And the dollar spot came through with some darling Valentine’s stickers to add a little more love to these pretty pink packages.

galentines-heart-stickers galentines-day-valentines-gifts

I’ll own it’s a totally manufactured Hallmark holiday, but regardless, I adore these ladies, and loved sending them a little sweetness this Valentine’s Day.

1 In festivities/ food/ recipes

a bacon bouquet


I may be a sucker for nearly any flowers, but not everyone feels that way. David has zero interest in almost all of my floral arrangements, that is, except for when I make a candied bacon bouquet. It’s a perfect Valentine’s Day treat for anyone, especially an enthusiastic carnivore.


One of our favorite restaurants at home in New Orleans, Elizabeth’s, makes the most amazing praline bacon. Over the years, I’ve refined my hot-and-sweet candied bacon recipe- we served twenty pounds of pig candy on our wedding dessert buffet, and I make it regularly for friends, family, special occasions and no reason whatsoever.


For such an impressive display, it’s not an unreasonable amount of work. Yes, drilling holes in the bottom of your mini-muffin pan (wearing eye protection, pleaseandthanks) may take a minute, but that just gives you the ability to whip up a batch of bacon roses anytime.

pulling-the-petals makin-bacon-bouquet


Candied Bacon Roses



  • 1 lb thin cut applewood smoked bacon
  • 2 cups dark brown sugar
  • cayenne pepper
  • Aleppo or other chile pepper, optional


  • mini-muffin pan
  • electric drill
  • Several stems of artificial roses (3 in pictured bouquet, from dollar tree)
  • aluminum foil
  • cookie sheet



  1. Preheat oven to 375′. Carefully drill drainage holes in the bottom of each well of the muffin pan. Wash and dry well, and place on foil-lined cookie sheet.
  2. Mix brown sugar with enough cayenne/pepper to have an intense sweet-spicy balance,  to your liking. We like ours hot, but start with a half teaspoon or so.
  3. Working with one slice of bacon at a time, dredge both sides of bacon in spiced sugar, pressing to adhere. Gently shake off any excess, and roll slice up into a rose bud shape. Place into muffin pan, and repeat until pan is full.
  4. Bake for 25 minutes, until rendered and deep brick red. You may need to lift rosebuds on occasion to let grease drain. They will firm as they render, but not fully crisp until cool.
  5. Meanwhile, strip blooms from floral stems and wash stems well. Place cooled bacon roses on stems, arrange pleasingly, and spoil your valentine deliciously.




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