- Farmers Market Herb Wreath
- Salted Caramel Sauce
- Pancake Gift Set
- Bride & Groom Cookbook
- Champagne Cork Catcher – Shot of Mom Approved!
- Gingerbread House
- Copper Mugs
- Veggie Chopper & Measure (Your editor needs this – wink, wink)
Tuesday, December 03, 2013
True story: We have a Williams-Sonoma on our street. I personally think this story gets a bad wrap for being pricey - which for some items it certainly is. However, you can totally walk into a Williams-Sonoma and find a gift for a number of people on your list at a variety of price points. Go ahead! I dare you to walk in and find something!
Saturday, November 30, 2013
J. Crew has become one of the Smithkowski’s favorite stores. While I pride myself on scoring some great deals here, Brady should receive an award for the amount of under $20 polos he’s scored at J. Crew.
Not only is J. Crew great for adults, but their kids and baby lines are great for gifts. And who can forget the outlet stores!
Here are my current favorite gift options.
- Maclister Boots - $198.00
- Lambswool Sweater - $75.00
- Tartine Mini-Satchel - $398.00
- Sequin Dress - $69.50
- Shimmer Earrings - $58.00
- Chef’s Apron Set - $45.00
- Boys Anchor Sweater - $59.50
- Minnetonka Baby Booties - $19.95
Friday, November 29, 2013
Welcome to the sixth year of the annual Shot of Brandi* gift guide!
Shot of Mom has always said that this time of year brings out the amateurs – the people that don’t shop all year and come out just for Christmas shopping. Not like us ladies that go on a weekly basis.
I spent some time at the mall the last two weekends and let me just say it makes me MAD! Specifically:
· The massive amounts of people that are walking around the mall with NO BAGS. What!? You are going to wait all year to come out and NOT buy anything!?
· Strollers. I’m sorry moms, but stores just weren’t made for your double wide stroller. I don’t like running into you in stores and by the sounds of your kids, they don’t want to be there either.
· Parking Lots. Just when you think you’ve found a spot, the person who you think is getting into their car proceeds to take 10 minutes to back out. THEN someone comes out of nowhere and tries to take the spot that you’ve now been waiting 15 minutes for!
· I recently went into Express & The Limited for two specific things: tights and a solid t-shirt. I spent under $20 on both, yet both stores had to ask me: if I wanted a credit card, if I wanted to sign up for rewards, for my phone number and my email address. Both stores got 4 no’s from me!
So in conclusion, what does the mall do to me? It makes me MAD!
The theme of my gift guide this year is Mall Madness. In honor of me being angry and one of my favorite board games ; )
Over the next few weeks, I plan to show a number of gifts for family and friends categorized by different stores at the mall. I may throw in some online stores as well – you never know!
Sit back, relax, grab a glass of wine and let’s shop online.
While I’ve blogged about Ugly Sweater parties before, I must admit that I’ve never actually hosted or attended one. But this year, that may just change, so I needed to prepare. And let me tell you, this is no easy task!
At first, I thought I would just go to my staple – EverythingSequins.com. But the holiday vest that I liked was $30 PLUS $30 to ship – I couldn’t justify the price.
I then scoured the internet for the perfect sweater. I still haven’t found it (I got something that is OKAY), but here are a few that I saw! Warning – some are adorable, but still pricey! What the heck!?
- Lot78 via The Outnet
- Mason by Michelle Mason
- Asos Holiday Pattern Sweater
- Asos Vintage Look Sweater
Urban Outfitters has an um, odd selection of sweaters. Some are a little risqué, but it’s worth checking out!
Tuesday, November 26, 2013
One thing that I’m thankful for this year is coming from a family of amazing cooks – on both sides! You’ve been treated to recipes from Shot of Mom and Godmother Aunt Michelle (Shot of Mom’s sister), so today I wanted to introduce you to Shot of Dad’s sister – Aunt Linda.
Aunt Linda makes the most AMAZING Sweet Potato Casserole on Thanksgiving. This thing shouldn't just be called a Casserole - but a Kick-ass-erole! Legend has it, my sister Jillian once ate an entire plate of this dish.
I decided to attempt it for the hubs’ family two years ago and it turned out okay. Well, I made it again tonight to take with us to New Jersey and it was SO EASY!
You’ve gotta trust me on this one. It doesn’t look that appetizing, but it’s DELICIOUS!
Aunt Linda’s Almost Famous Sweet Potato Casserole
· 3 cups (4 medium) mashed cooked sweet potatoes (I use the canned version – 1 40oz can of yams = 3 mashed cups)
· ¼ cup of sugar
· 1 stick of melted margarine
· 2 eggs
· 1 teaspoon of vanilla
Mix and mash all ingredients together and put into a buttered square Corning dish. Cover with Topping
· 1 cup brown sugar
· ½ cup margarine, softened
· ½ cup flour
· 1 cup chopped walnuts nuts (Shot of Mom uses walnuts or pecans or a combo of both)
· ½ cup coconut
Mix topping together.
Bake 350 for 20-30 minutes.
Without Topping & With Topping (not baked)
And we can’t forget my in-laws – you haven’t met their tasty recipes yet, but maybe Aunt Donna will share the details on her secret Magic Cookie Bars soon ; )
Monday, November 18, 2013
Reader Dana recently asked me about a potential holiday party theme. Once she got my brain wheels spinning, I came up with a pretty rad theme that I said “I need to blog this.”
So I’m blogging it.
You’ve done the ugly sweater party. You may have done the plaid party. Now, I give you – the Christmas Movie Character Party!
Encourage guests to come dressed as their favorite holiday movie character. Need suggestions? That’s what I’m here for!
· A Christmas Story: Ralphie, The Leg, Randy in the Bunny Costume.
· Elf: Elf. Lol.
· National Lampoons Christmas Vacation: Clark Griswald, Uncle Eddie
· Frosty The Snowman: Frosty.
· Home Alone: Kevin McCallister, the burglars, Gus Polinski (The Polka King of the Midwest)
· Babes in Toyland: Mother Goose, Bo Peep, Mary Contrary, Jack-Be-Nimble, Jack, Jill or Boy Blue.
· Charlie Brown: Sad tree, Charlie Brown, Lucy, Linus, Snoopy, Schroeder, Patty, Sally.
· The Grinch: Cindy Loo Who, The Grinch, Whos from Whoville
· Mean Girls: No, not really Christmas, but you can do the Mean Girls and Amy Pohler in school skit scene.
· Nutcracker: Ballerina, Nutcracker, The Mouse, Sugar Plum Fairy
· Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer: Reindeer! Sam the Snowman (voiced by Burl Ives), misfit toys.
· Miracle on 34th Street: Santa Claus.
· A Christmas Carol: Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future, Ebenezer Scrooge or Tiny Tim.
· Last, but certainly not least, my favorite: Emmet Otter’s Jug-Band Christmas: Go as Otter’s!
Sunday, October 27, 2013
Still looking for a last minute Halloween costume? Feel free to borrow my idea! I was ME - just a younger version!
We attended a last minute party last night – filling in for some missing team members in my parents bowling league (I bowled my average 103, but Brady bowled like the series of his life – almost hitting 200 one game!).
Given that it’s the week before Halloween, costumes were optional, so I couldn’t resist and took my own advice – I was #TBT (aka Throwback Thursday).
Here’s how I pulled this one off:
· I went to the mall with a series of pictures from my youth with the intention of replicating one of my outfits.
· My blue shapes sweater 1st grade pic was the easiest and most cost effective to pull off, but finding a blue sweater was a pain in the butt. I finally found one at Target for $21.
· I purchased some felt for the shapes for $3. The necklace was a few bucks from Claire’s.
· After scoring such deals, I decided to make the Instagram frame. The posterboard was under $5.
· Making the sweater was easy…the Instagram frame was a bit tricker. I cut printed the word Instagram on two 8x10 prices of paper and then cut it out in just a solid white.
· I took a screenshot of an Instagram pic and then cropped the buttons, made them bigger and then glued them to the board.
In the end, it was a cheap, easy costume that was perfect for bowling!
Thursday, October 24, 2013
If you are celebrating Halloween with your ghoul-friends (see what I did there) this weekend, then you may be looking for some festive sippers to celebrate.
Here are some brews to consider:
· Vampire they also make
· Dracula and
· Daddy Long Legs - this one is expensive!
· Scarecrow Cab – and even MORE expensive!
Friday, October 18, 2013
Cleaning out my shoe closet a few weeks ago, I realized that I have an obsession for shoes with bows. It’s so strange, but it’s just what I gravitate towards.
Since I seriously can’t possibly add another pair of bowed shoes to my closet, I figured that I’d share a list of bowed shoes here.
3. Tory Burch
5. J. Crew
6. Kate Spade