If you’ve heard it once, you’ve heard it a million times; this girl is not a fan of winter, well not Boston’s winter anyways – it doesn’t look all that bad in San Fran. The moment those temps drop below 50 I enter hibernation mode which, I have to admit, does have it’s good points. I’ve always enjoyed the run up to the hols (probably even more than the holidays themselves) because it’s one of the very few times of year we get to really slow down and enjoy the little things in life without feeling guilty. Suddenly, that voice nagging you to run another errand or unload the dishwasher is completely silenced and it seems nothing could be more important than simply relaxing.
If you’re anything like me then there’s probably nothing you enjoy more than spontaneously treating yourself to a half day which is exactly what I did yesterday. The minute it hit 2PM I whipped up my signature spiked peppermint hot chocolate, poured it into my favorite mug (this cutie is a part of Ello’s limited edition holiday set and coincidentally one of the biggest mugs in our house) and didn’t move again until I’d read PORTER from cover to cover. Sitting back and soaking up the afternoon? An indulgence so simple it could sound silly and yet it was the highlight of my week.
If you’ve been feeling more hamster-on-a-wheel than actual human being lately then I’d highly recommend taking a day or even just a few hours to enjoy the little things that make you smile. Oh and just in case my spiked cocoa sounds like one of those things I’ve gone ahead and included the recipe below – as well as a few details on the perfect gift for all those hard-to-buy-for people on your list this year.
Spiked Peppermint Hot Chocolate
** Ingredients **
1/2 cup of half-and-half.
1/2 cup of milk.
3 tbsp of chocolate chips (milk is my personal choice)
A dash of vanilla extract
A dash of peppermint oil
1 shot of peppermint schnapps (optional but highly recommended)
A dollop of whipped cream (optional but . . . do it)
Candy canes and/or marshmallows for garnish (presentation is everything, people)
** Directions **
Combine half-and-half and milk in a small saucepan. Heat on medium until warm.
Stir in chocolate chips and whisk until totally melted.
Add in a dash of vanilla and peppermint oil. (Tip: do this slowly and don’t forget to taste test afterwards)
When satisfied with your extract balance, stir in peppermint schnapps.
Pour into your favorite mug and top with as much garnish as possible.
Ello Ello – A Pretty & Practical Gift For Less Than $25
Psst! Since I know how stressful it can be to find gifts for the notoriously hard-to-buy-for people in your life (here’s looking at you, hubby) I thought I’d tell you a little more about this holiday set from Ello. I actually treated myself to the one you see here simply because I loved the look of it but after using it for the past couple of weeks I’ve picked up two more – one for my mother-in-law and one (in black) for Ted. Here’s why I love it and know they will too . . .
- I’m a sucker for a classic with a twist so it didn’t take long for me to fall for just about everything Ello. I can’t tell you how much I love their modern take on the classic camp mug you see here. As for the water bottle? You can’t go wrong with rose gold – so cute!
- As practical as it is pretty, this water bottle keeps your favorite thirst quencher cold for 24 hours.
- When it comes to Ello, you don’t have to worry about the harmful chemicals (think BPA and/or BPS) found in so many other tumblers and food containers.
- Possibly the best thing about the Campy Travel Mug? It’s 100% leak proof which is a huge win for this girl who recently destroyed her favorite tote after packing another lower quality travel mug into it before her commute home. UGH.
- If you love anything limited edition as much as this girl then you’ll want to get your hands on one of the Campy Holiday 2pks ASAP. They’ve already sold out at Ello but did I notice there are a few left at Target.