These are a few of my favorite things

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens, bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens…

Merry, Merry Christmas to you and yours.  I pray that this day before Christmas gives you warm hearts as you gather with people you love to remember the Christ Child’s birth.  If you’re gathered in a family that isn’t quite so loving, my heart goes out to you.

Last year I missed this post and failed to share My Favorite Things. While my list is nothing like Julie Andrews’ I do have a small list. It’s definitely nothing like Oprah’s list was back in the day of her talk show.  But in my own little world these are a few of my favorite things.

Photography Favorites:

Sigma 85mm 1.4 Prime Lens

I have always been a Nikon lens junkie. Until this year all my lenses were Nikon.  When I told one of my photographer friends that I was going to upgrade my 85mm prime lens to the 1.4 (this is tech talk – photographers will know what I’m talking about) she suggested that I look into the Sigma lens for that upgrade.  I took her suggestion, did some research of my own and bit the bullet. This lens is dreamy and the bokeh is to die for.  Now looking back I don’t know how my camera bag didn’t have this lens in it before.  It was definitely worth the upgrade and $700 less than the Nikon version.

Cheeky Lime Camera Bags

I love my Cheeky Lime Bags.  It might be a slight addiction. Whenever Cheeky offers something new I always have to drool over it a little. These bags are really cute and also quite roomy.  At first glance they don’t look very big. But I put mine to the test as you can see on the Cheeky Lime Blog.  Believe it or not I have one more lens and another set of pocket wizards added to my collection since the blog post on the Cheeky site.  These bags hold a lot!

Beauty Favorites:

My favorite makeup brand is Bare Minerals.  99% of my skin care and make-up products are this brand.  I love the staying power of Bare Minerals foundation throughout photo shoots.  I have tried other versions of mineral foundation but nothing is like the Bare Minerals brand.

The reason I said 99% is because I was introduced to a new product that I am in love with and that product is…

Younique Moodstruck 3D Fiber Lashes

My cousin, Crystal introduced me to this product. It wasn’t until I saw it in action that I had that ‘wow’ moment.  I have not been blessed with long eye lashes and have tried every brand of mascara known to woman – to know avail.  My mascara has to have staying power for the same reason as my makeup… I have a camera in front of my face every day.  This mascara REALLY does give your lashes length.  I never leave home without it now. Thank you, Crystal for introducing me to this product.  And because Crystal is so awesome, here is a link to her page. 

Alex and Ani

A couple of years ago I noticed a bracelet line at our local jewelry store. Alex and Ani is the name.  These bracelets are adorable and I see them on a lot clients arms as well as my own. I have purchased them as gifts for others and have been fortunate to receive some as gifts myself.  Here are a few of my favorites.  I almost always have my Alex and Ani’s on.

 

 

Edible Favorites:

It can’t be a holiday post without the mention of yummy food.  I am no Betty Crocker, believe me… or just ask my kids.  But I do have 2 recipes that I make time after time for gatherings and they’re always a hit. As a matter of fact I have a pot of these dumplings on the stove as I type.

This dumpling recipe is one that I saw on TV years ago.  It was Faith Hill’s recipe. I quickly wrote it down on a sticky note and that’s still what I pull out of my recipe box each time I make them.

It is very easy and a hit for carb lovers everywhere.  Here is the recipe:

Dumplings

2 Cups Flour

3 TB Butter

1 Tsp Salt

1/2 Cup Buttermilk

Combine flour and butter with a pastry cutter
Add salt and Buttermilk
Roll out with rolling pin
Cut into 2 inch squares

Add dumplings to boiling broth (turkey, chicken or beef).  Boil until dough is thoroughly cooked through.

Another recipe that I always get raves about is for Caesar Salad. This recipe is from the Cooking with Friends recipe book. My friends who know me well will not be surprised that this cookbook is on my shelf.  And I have to add that I bought this cook-book at Target a LONG time ago for under $20.00. I have no idea why it’s so expensive on Amazon. Here is the recipe.

Vegetarian Caesar Salad:

1/2 Cup Olive Oil
1 Large Garlic Clove
3 TB Lemon Juice
1 Tsp Dijon Mustard
1/2 Tsp Worcestershire Sauce
Salt and Ground Pepper to taste

1 Large Head of Romain Lettuce
1/2 Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
Croutons

Shake first 6 ingredients together to make salad dressing. Toss with lettuce. Add Parmesan cheese and croutons to top.  Enjoy!

There you have it my favorite things 2014.  I hope you have a wonderful Christmas and are blessed with your favorite things, favorite people and filled with God’s love so graciously given to us in a manger 2000 years ago. Yes, I believe.

Much love my family to yours,

Amy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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