Recipes: Valentine's Day Sugar Cookies

              Hey y'all! :) It's almost the weekend, woo hoo. I wanted to share a wonderful (probably the best) sugar cookie recipe yet. My aunt Carri's and grandma's is pretty awesome but this is right up there in the same ball park. So good!! Mam made these for Christmas and everyone loved them and I knew I had to make them for Valentine's Day and share with you all. The best part is they aren't overly sweet, sounds weird with it being a sugar cookie but they are so delicious!

            I hope you all have fun weekend plans. We are heading to Indiana to spend time with family and friends. I hope you enjoy your Friday and weekend ahead and of course this recipe. Make this for your significant other or for your kids, because it's a good one. Thanks for stopping by and Happy Valentine's Day! xoxo

Sugar cookie recipe:

-1 1/2 cup of sugar
-1 cup of shortening
-2 eggs, well beaten
-3 Tablespoons of sour cream
-1/2 teaspoon of Baking Soda
-1/4 teaspoon of salt
-1/4 teaspoon of vanilla
-3 cups of flour

-pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees
-cream the sugar and shortening together first
-add the eggs, sour cream, and vanilla
-slowly add in your flour, salt, and baking soda
-mix this well
-chill for 3 hours in the fridge
-roll the dough out to your desired thickness and cut or form into ball
-bake for 400 for 8-10 minutes
-cool the cookies on a  cooling rack
-then ice the cookies and enjoy!

For the icing, I just use powdered sugar, water, and vanilla and whipped this up to make a thick consistency, you can also purchase your own icing as well to ice these


Recipes: Valentines Day Classic Cake

                   Hi everyone! I hope you are having a fabulous week! I can't believe we are already in February and only a week or so away from Valentines Day already. Crazy! As you know from my previous blog posts, we have just finished our January Whole 30 so this is a funny post going from healthy food to a  delicious cake haha! But, the truth is I love to bake. Baking is so therapeutic for me and brings me so much happiness. Even if I just have a bite or don't eat any of it; regardless, I just like to bake for people. I think this is in my blood and DNA from my mother, and both of my grandma's (which I am totally okay with :))

                   With the Valentines Day holiday quickly approaching, I thought it would be fun to share a classic and yummy yellow cake with chocolate frosting with you. This is a great recipe and so delicious. I will also be sharing a new cookie recipe with you this week as well so stay tuned for that but to start this off, here is the cake recipe. I hope you enjoy this and hope you enjoy the Valentines Day kitchen details. Happy Tuesday :) xo

Yellow Cake recipe:

-4 large eggs
-1 cup of milk
-2 teaspoons of vanilla
2 Tablespoons of vegetable oil
-2 1/2 cups of cake flour
-1 1/2 cups of sugar
-1 teaspoon of salt
-2 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder
-1 1/2 sticks of unsalted butter softened  

-preheat your oven to 350
-grease two 8 inch baking pans 
-use this same mixture/details below for both of your 8 inch baking pans
-in a large mixing bowl combine your eggs, milk, and your other liquid ingredients here
-using a separate bowl combine the flour, sugar, salt and baking powder
-whisk the dry ingredients 
-then, add in small amounts of your butter a few pieces at a time to the dry ingredients bowl
-mix this until the dry ingredients are moistened by the butter and form crumbles
-then add 1/2 of the liquid egg mixture to the dry ingredients
-the batter will begin to thicken 
-then pour in the remaining egg mixture and beating/stirring until smooth
-bake at 350 for 30-35 min or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean
-Let the cake cool completely before stacking on top of each other or cutting/icing

Chocolate Frosting:

-2 sticks of unsalted butter softened 
-6 cups of powdered sugar 
-1 cup of cocoa 
-1/2 cup of milk
-2 teaspoons of vanilla

-beat your butter first for a couple minutes on medium speed of your mixture 
-then, add your vanilla and blend into the butter
-then, add in your powdered sugar and cocoa powder 
-add in your milk 
-begin beating at a low speed until a thicker consistency 


Recipes: Whole 30 Week 4 Meal Ideas

          Hi Everyone! Long time no blog post (well since last week)! We have have been under the weather for several days with all of the crummy cold/illness going around I am just now getting around to posting our last week of Whole30 Meal ideas as well as getting online. Our last full week of Whole30 and since we have both been sick, it was a lot of quick dinners and take out. Here are a few images below of some meal ideas that I wanted to share with you to wrap up our January Whole 30. I can't believe it is February this week! So crazy. Enjoying and embracing the month ahead and looking forward to a wonderful week. I hope you all had a great weekend and enjoy the first week of February :) Thanks for stopping by and stay tuned for some fun Valentines Day Ideas coming up soon!

xo Tesla

Whole Foods on the go Dinner (pulled pork, green beans, mashed sweet potatoes, one piece of paleo chicken, and strawberries

Hashbrown, sausage, onion, and egg muffins for grab and go breakfast

Pulled chicken, green onions, on a baked potato with Tesserae's Whole 30 BBQ sauce and green beans on the side 


Recipes: Whole 30 Week 3 Meal Ideas

               Hi Everyone! Happy Monday! Week 3 of whole30 is upon us and we are feeling pretty good. I wanted to share what week 3 of our meal ideas looked like. Some things are on repeat at this point because we have enjoyed them so much such as this Salad using Tessemae's Cesar dressing and a lot of eggs haha! I hope you all had a great weekend and hope you have a great week ahead. Enjoy these meal ideas and thanks for stopping by :) Xo

If you saw my last two weeks of meal ideas, you see this is my favorite go-to salad I have created. Lettuce, green onions, cashews, and Tessemae's Caesar dressing

Grilled chicken Fajita's with tomato paste

Pork chop with Basil/Cashew Pesto, asparagus, and roasted sweet potatoes 

Egg Omelette with garlic, cilantro, &  green onions with Whole30 Bacon

Apple turkey sausage, eggs with green cilantro, and a banana pineapple smoothie with collagen and coconut milk 

Same Tesserae's cesar salad as above only  added the whole30  bacon- so good!

Applegate turkey dog and spiraled white sweet potatoes 


Recipes: Potato & Bacon Chowder

                 Hey Everyone! Happy Friday!! Well, in Nashville we had 3 inches of snow earlier in the week and this weekend its in the 60's geez oh mighty, if that doesn't mess up your body I don't know what will haha! I loved every minute of the snow and snow days! Hopefully we will get some more before the season is up. Anywhoo, I wanted to share this great recipe that we tried this week on our Week 3 of Whole 30. We are still kicking, yep still making it, it's never easy but always good haha! We tried this one night and loved this easy and delicious recipe and thought it would be fun to share with you all. This is a whole30 recipe/paleo/ GF/DF all that goodness.

             This was a perfect dish for a cold week! I made this in the slow cooker; therefore, I included the slow cooker details below as well as the recipe. I found this from another gal who is paleo and whole30 named Paleo Bailey on social media and her website is linked below if you would like to see more of her recipes as well. This one is great!! Enjoy xo :)

Potato and Bacon Chowder 

-3 large white potatoes 
-1/2 cup of onions (I used white and also green onions as well)
-6 slices of bacon crumbled
-28 oz of chicken stock  
-2 cups of almond milk 
-3 tablespoons ghee butter
- 1 1/2 tablespoons of arrowroot powder as the thickener
-3 tablespoons of parsley flakes
-salt and pepper to taste

For your crockpot:
-Add all of the ingredients besides cooked bacon, almond milk and thickener to your crock pot
-Then cook this on high for 3-4 hours 
-Then, add in your almond milk to a large skillet on the stove top over medium heat, add in thickener, whisk until thick and until it bubbles and the clumps dissolve, then add into your crock pot
-Lastly, stir in the cooked bacon and allow your soup to thicken 
-I garnished the soup with green onions and bacon :)
this recipe is from: Paleo Bailey head to: Paleo Bailey Recipes Including this Recipe
for more of her recipes 

Here are some pictures of this recipe that we made this week:


Style & Beauty: My Go-To Products

               Hi Everyone! Happy Wednesday! I hope you are all enjoying your week so far. We have had actual snow in Nashville and it has been exciting! Cold and snowy, my favorite :) With the cold weather and the dry skin I thought it would be fun to share my go-to products not only during the chilly months but year round. These are products I stay true to and love all year long. As many of you know, I am a consultant on the side for Beautycounter and a lot of my go-to products are Beautycounter but also other products as well. Whether you are renewing your products for the new year, wanting to try something new, or simply want to see what I love I put together a lot of information for you. I hope you enjoy, please let me know if you have any questions!

Here is a detailed list of my go-to's and why I love them: My notes are in red

Coconut Milk Bath Soak by Herbivore:

Key Benefits:
  • Perfect for hydrating and softening skin
  • Leaves your skin soft and hydrated
  • Coconut milk powder moisturizes and softens the skin
  • Delivers anti-inflammatory properties
  • Helps soothe inflamed areas of the skin
  • Vanilla helps deliver a relaxing and calming effect on the brain
  • Provides relief from anxiety, anger and restlessness
  • Imparts a soothing coconut and vanilla extract
An ethically sourced, natural skin care line with a wide-range of products, Herbivore Botanicals stick to active ingredients for visible results.

If you need a good clean/safe bath soak this is a great product that I use when or if I take a bath. It smells great and the best part its safe to use. 

You can purchase it here: This is the best deal I have found on this: Coconut Milk Bath Soak

Beautycounter Balancing + Charcoal Mask:

As some of you may know, Beautycounter offers safe products with safe ingredients. All products are clean and safe of harmful chemicals and ingredients and safe for everyone in the family to use. 

Benefits: Activated charcoal and kaolin clay absorb excess oil and refine skin texture, giving skin a smooth, polished appearance. Infused with activated charcoal and ylang ylang, the Beautycounter+ Balancing Collection gently refines oily, uneven skin. 

The nutrient rich kaolin clay mask purifies and balances absorbing excess old and draws out impurities. Activated charcoal minuses the appearance of pores, giving skin a smooth, refined appearance while salicylic acid stimulations exfoliation. Perfect for all skin types and those concerned with congestion and oily skin. 

I use this twice a week and love the way it makes my skin feel afterwards. The mask dries quick and hardens deep within your pores. You skin will definitely feel softer and better just after one or two uses. This is also great for anyone that suffers from acne. 

To purchase: Charcoal Mask

Skinny Coconut Oil: Skinny Coconut Oil is the only 100% RAW, sustainably sourced, small batch, chemical free, preservative free, never heated and hand crafted coconut oil in the world.  The secret is our body and age defying patented Nutralock technology that produces oil below 100 degrees without using heat, chemicals or solvents. Heat and chemicals is the natural enemy of oil because it breaks down its vital medium chain fatty acids (MCFA’s) and naturally occurring enzymes rendering the oil less effective.

With Skinny Coconut Oil you are assured of getting those rare to find yet highly beneficial MCFA’s.  The miracle of MCFA’s is that they are quickly digested by the body instead of stored as fat and arterial plaque like long chain fatty acids found in seed and other types of oils.

Skinny Coconut Oil is also a natural form of MCT oil along with having over 50% lauric acid -the highest levels found in a coconut oil,  which is the immune building key to mothers breast milk.

Skinny Coconut Oil takes 30% more coconuts to produce and in its liquid state above 78 degrees readers completely clear and actually looks like water - the true sign of purity in coconut oil.

Skinny Coconut Oil gives you everything you need to hydrate, repair and protect your body and skin.  Our exclusive age defying patented process uniquely formulates a pH balanced coconut oil which maintains all of its natural occurring fatty acids essential for beautiful hair and skin.

Your skin is your largest organ and works hard for you - return the favor with Skinny Coconut Oil and indulge yourself in the best nature has to offer. Reap the many benefits of younger, hydrated and healthy looking skin and a slimmer, more focused, healthier looking you.  Skinny Coconut Oil is as close as you can get to handpicked from the tree.
  • Paleo - Keto - Vegan - Non GMO
  • Great healthy Fat for Energy
  • Shown to boost metabolism
  • Wild harvested coconuts are handpicked
  • No chemicals, fillers, solvents or preservatives
  • Patented NutraLock™ process uses cold air instead of heat
How To Use:
  • Add to tea, coffee, or smoothies
  • Use in place of butter or conventional oils
  • Take spoonful for natural sustained energy
For hair, face, and skin care, view our Health & Body collection. Coconut oil may turn liquid above 76 degrees Fahrenheit and become solid again under 76 degrees.
    • 100% RAW Patented Nutralock Coconut Oil (cocos nucifera)
    **All information found on the Skinny Coconut Website

    I use this every night as a makeup remover to remove the makeup from my eyes before cleansing with my Beautycounter products. This product you can also cook with as it mentions above but I use this as a night time regiment for my makeup. You can also take a look at the website as they have entire section of coconut oil products for style and beauty.

    To purchase: Skinny Coconut Oil

    Peppermint Pure Castile Bar Soap: Our most popular scent & with a peppermint burst so pure it tingles! Scented with organic peppermint oil to cool skin, clear sinuses and sharpen mind. Our Peppermint Pure-Castile Bar Soap is made with certified fair trade ingredients and organic hemp oil for a soft, smooth lather that won't dry your skin. 100% biodegradable in a 100% post-consumer recycled wrapper.

    Ingredients: Organic Coconut Oil*, Organic Palm Oil*, Sodium Hydroxide**, Water, Organic Olive Oil*, Mentha Arvensis, Organic Hemp Oil, Organic Jojoba Oil, Mentha Piperita, Sea Salt, Citric Acid, Tocopherol
    **None remains after saponifying oils into soap & glycerin.

    ** All information found directly from the Dr. Bronner's Website 

    Reed and I both use this daily in the shower as a body bar soap and also as a hand soap by the sink. We love the peppermint smell but also love the way it leaves your skin feeling after each use. They have great products! We love the bottled castile soap also to clean our home as well. 

    To purchase: I find this at Sprouts or my local grocery store also Target now carries this or online at Peppermint Castille Bar Soap

    Beautycounter Nourishing Cream Cleanser: Soothe and nourish your skin as you wash away your makeup and other impurities with this ultra-gentle daily cleanser. Lightweight yet deeply moisturizing, the creamy formula contains witch hazel to tone skin, and coconut oil and aloe to help hydrate.

    Dampen skin, then gently massage cleanser into your face, Rinse, and this is perfect for all skin types for the whole family.

    I use this daily as my daily face wash either in the morning or at night. The other product I love that I didn't mention here is the charcoal bar by Beautycounter. I switch these two from day to night to cleanse my face. Excellent products!!

    Beautycounter Color Pinch Cream Blusher: This brightens your cheeks with a natural, dewy color. Using jojoba ester and carnauba wax as it conditions and hydrates skin, making the smooth, non sticky formula easy to apply on the go. You dab this on your cheek bones on blend evenly with a blender sponge, your finger, or brush. This creates a natural looking glow and adds color to your cheeks.

     I use this daily and a little bit goes a long way! you just need a dab on each side of your face after you apply your foundation, powder, this is your finishing touch. 

    Beautycounter Touchup Skin Concealer Pen:  Hide dark circles, redness, or other areas of imperfections with this concealer pen. Unlike other concealers that move or shift, ours stays put for long lasting, flawless wear. Plus, the click pen and brush applicator make it easy to apply just use the right amount on the go. Formulated with knotgrass extract, our concealer helps reduce the appearance of fine lines and photo aging so skin looks firmer, brighter instantly. 

    I also use this daily as well under my eyes and any other redness areas of my skin that I want to touch up. This works great and another favorite product!!

    Beautycounter Eye and Cheek Palette:  This Palette is currently sold out on the Beautycounter website but there is another palette called the Ocean and Pacific Palette that is equally great with incredible colors. 

    This is the Ocean and Pacific Palette for you to get an idea of the quality and beautiful shades of eyeshadow but also that we offer multiple safe products 

    To Purchase: Products shown here 

    Beautycounter Peppermint Lip Conditioner:  Soothes and softens lips with peppermint and rosemary oils. Rub a small amount on lips to condition as much as needed. 

    I use this daily, especially in the winter months. When your lips are cracked, dried, or whatever is going on with them and you want a good conditioner that works like a chapstick with butter haha I'm not kidding, its the bomb!! 


    Recipes: Whole 30 Week 2 Meal Ideas

    Hey Everyone! Happy Sunday! I hope you all enjoyed your weekend! We definitely did. Full of relaxing, slowing down with a few good books, date night, and getting ourselves in the gym. It was a great weekend :) We wrapped up week 2 of Whole 30 and are feeling pretty good. I refuse to step on the scale until the first program is over and that is what the Whole30 recommends but Reed hopped on and has already lost a good chunk of weight. Which is great, but it doesn't compare to how much better we already feel only after 2 weeks of the program. That's the reason we are doing this again because of how much better we feel. Just like last summer when we did this, it was such a great re-set and we plan to continue this longer than just the 30 days and more of a lifestyle change. Definitely much needed for us.

    I wanted to share a few simple and easy meal ideas that we had/made this week for our Whole 30. Just like last week, this is just a few of our meals from the week. If there is any meal below you would like the recipe for, just let me know and I can send that to you or post on the blog. I hope you are all enjoying the first few weeks of the New Year! Have a great night and Happy Sunday!
    Thank you for stopping by xo 

    Whole Foods Grab-n-Go for Lunch: Paleo chicken, Roasted Sweet potatoes, and Brocoli 

    For a side for Dinner one night: Smashed Garlic & Ghee Butter Yukon Potatoes (so good) 

    Homemade Chicken Wings with "Everything but the Bagel seasoning" from Trader Joes

    Dinner: The chicken wings, garlic potatoes, and leftover Brocoli from above

    Dinner Leftovers & Arugula and Green Leaf Caesar Salad using Tesserae's Caesar Dressing

    Breakfast Casserole: Hashbrowns, eggs, chicken apple sausage, peppers, and onions 

    Snack: Orange, Apple, and Almond Butter 


    Home Decor: Our Sunroom project

                 Hey everyone! Happy Thursday! I hope you are all having a great week. I wanted to share a space with you that has been a work in progress. Reed placed bead board on our ceiling of our sunroom this past fall and it turned out great! He did such a good job and we love how it turned out. Then, my dad came in (our master painter in the family) and painted this room white for us and the bead board. I wanted a good fresh look in this room but didn't exactly know what furniture etc that I wanted.

                I have kind of always had the idea of wanting to create a book room or a travel room and definitely want those spaces in our future home one day; however, I thought it would be fun to create a travel themed and book themed sun room. I took several photos from our last few years of traveling and put them in black and white all throughout the room. The trip photos are special to us because we have our honeymoon, first year anniversary, our favorite trip thus far, and a fun trip we took to Mount Airy for Reed's Birthday. These are just a few of our favorite travel photos and thought they would be neat in solid black frames against a bright wall.

             With the travel photos, came along the book idea of compiling and re-organizing all of our favorite books into one location. If you know me or just by following my blog, you know I love neutrals in my house; however, our sunroom has some colorful books on the side that really gives this room a different look from the rest of the house but still ties in as well. I have come to love this sunroom nook in our house and have really enjoyed it since completing it. I searched for months (I am not kidding) for sun room furniture and to be honest didn't really find anything I fell in love with and because of that I re-arranged our living room and added in our love seat that was originally from the living room and moved it into our sunroom space.

            I think what ties this room together is the new basket weave light/chandelier that I found at Ikea. I am in love with it and love the feel it gives for this room. It's clean, kinda earthy toned, and think it fits perfectly in this space. I hope you enjoy the photos below of the finished project. As always, I hope this inspires you to create your own travel or book themed room or whatever room that is that you are working on. I hope you have a great day and rest of the weekend. Thank you for stopping by! xo