guess what’s back?

cider lane, bbw candle, fall, inspiration, nesting, seasonal

oh yeah. it’s back in a big way. if you’re new around here (and a lot of you are, hi!), you might not know about my OBSESSION with this candle. if you want a refresher, a good place to start is here and here.

this candle smells like everything good about fall. the crisp air, the apples, the caramel, the leaves. and, having just typed that sentence i’m now in full fall nesting mode. if you need me, i’ll be buried under a pile of sweaters and baking cookbooks.

see, i have this thing i do, where i get really attached to seasonal things, and then i never touch them until that season rolls around again.

  • in the winter it’s peppermint everything. soap, candy canes, vodka, etc.
  • in the spring it’s green plants, even though i have a black thumb.
  • in the summer it’s dairy queen blizzards (cookie dough please, unless there is a special fruit chocolate combo on special).

and in the fall it’s pumpkin baked goods, my tall boots and this candle. i’m like a walking girl cliche.

my husband has even prohibited me from purchasing any more boots. he has a point, as i have basically every combination of boot you could think of, and we live in a house built at a time where people had one pair of shoes and two dresses apiece. it was not built with the typical millenial female in mind.

there isn’t really a point to this post, i just wanted to let you guys know that all of my posts from now until december are going to be cider lane-scented, hope you don’t mind.

what’s your fall thing? is it pulling out the scarves and sweaters…putting away the iced coffee? or do you continue with life as usual?


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humpday happy list.

they’re baaaack! oh and i know you’ve just been waiting for these little humpday posts to come back. don’t pretend you haven’t been. (okay, you probably haven’t been waiting, but just let me pretend for a bit.)

i hope you enjoy my little happiness list on this hot wednesday. i’ve missed looking for inspiration throughout the month, and good thing i’m picking it back up again, because i have a feeling that i am going to need some inspiration over the next few months. i just got a GIGANTIC project assigned to me at work, and although i’m very excited about it and the opportunities it’s going to bring, i’m also freaking the bleep out.

here’s to it being the wednesday before labor day, and all the fun to come this weekend. let me know what’s been inspiring you/keeping you going this month!


1) humpday craftiness: rain drawings.

i saw this on (where else?) pinterest the other day, and now i cannot.stop.thinking about it! wouldn’t this be a fun thing to do on the sidewalk in front of your house, as a little surprise for the mailman  when it’s raining (or anyone really)? now i just need to convince Mister Man that this is a good idea too.

2) humpday hairstyle: topknot, topknot, topknot. also a topknot.

this weather makes me want to strip naked and lay on the concrete floor in my basement. but since i have a full-time job and also that is not socially acceptable, i settle for piling my mane on top of my head in a topknot. there are bobby pins scattered around the house, in all my pockets and bags, if that’s any indication of how often this has been happening. in other news, i need a haircut.

3) humpday gift idea: gifts in jars.

at the bridal shower for my friend kari the other day, one of the guests, who happens to be a coworker of mine (as well as a fabulous blogger), brought two jars that looked like this one, full of household necessities like sponges, dish towels, COFFEE, etc. when i saw them, i had two thoughts: 1) i wanted to steal them for myself, and 2) i wanted to steal them and take them home for myself. as someone who is always at target last minute for shower gifts, and never has wrapping paper on hand, this solves many, many problems.


4) humpday recipe: infused olive oil.

i love me some infusing. simple syrup, alcohol, sugar, give me something to infuse and i’ll do it. nothing is off-limits, including bacon vodka. so when i saw this little post on a beautiful mess, i got really excited. it’s always nice to have some inspiration for simple tricks to make your cooking feel super extra-special fancy. i will be trying this as the fall starts rolling in.


5) humpday cocktail: beergarita.

specifically this pineapple beergarita from my friend trisha. you already know that she is amazing at whipping up delicious cocktails from our thirsty thursday series in july, but this one…i have not been able to stop thinking about this one. last year for labor day at the cabin, i put myself in charge of bringing the ingredients for a fun cocktail (that should surprise no one, unless you’re new here, in which case, welcome!). it was a hit, and so i’m thinking i should keep up the tradition and bring the ingredients for this baby up there this weekend. methinks it would put me in the running for most popular person at the cabin, right?


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sources: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4

the liebster, little darling.

oh hi. just me, on a monday morning, trying to recover from the AMAZING time we had at #sariweddingweekend. it was so exciting to celebrate the start of a wonderful marriage between two of my dear friends. you both were radiating pure joy, thank you for reminding Mister Man and me what a gift from God marriage is.

now on to today’s programming.


last week, i was notified by little miss amber over at mr. thomas and me that she’d nominated me for the liebster award! what you need to know is that amber is blond and has (awesome) tattoos, but that’s where the differences between us end. she’s kind of my soul twin in every way. and that girl has the best attitude around, do yourself a favor and visit her.

(full disclosure: haley over at les petites joies nominated me for a liebster award a while back, but i didn’t have time/didn’t have enough blogs to link to, so i never actually paid it forward. haley, consider this a joint passing on of the liebster from you, and also, is it weird to link back to you now? you don’t have to answer that.)


now. what is the liebster award?

“liebster” is german and means sweetest, kindest, nicest, dearest, beloved, lovely, kind, pleasant, valued, cute, endearing, and welcome.  basically it’s like calling someone a little darling. and isn’t that just the nicest?

to me, the award is not only a way to say you appreciate new bloggers writing and efforts, it’s also a really good way to find and connect with a larger community of bloggers in the same place in their journey as you. and i love me some community. also, FYI, i find all my favorite blogs through other people, so these are the best.

once you have been nominated for this award, there are a few rules that you have to follow:

  • you’re required to answer 11 questions that the blogger who nominated you has set.
  • you then need to state 11 random facts about yourself.
  • you then need to mention other bloggers/blogs that inspire you or that you enjoy reading and nominate them.
  • once you have nominated other bloggers, you then need to set your own 11 questions for them.
  • once you have been nominated, thank the person that nominated you and post a link back to their blog if you feel so inclined.

amber’s 11 questions for me

  1. your all-time favorite book….and why? 
    this is hard, because i have so many books that i love, but little women has to be one that i could read over and over.
  2. did you have an imaginary friend as a child? if you did, tell us about said friend. 
    you guys, this is so boring, but i did not have any type of imaginary friend. i did not need one, because i had siblings for as long as i can possibly remember. i ran around the living room in circles with them and read books to them, and i was too busy to have any friends in my imagination.
  3. what song is you? 
    this is maybe weird, and not that deep, but “you make my dreams” by hall and oates is one that just feels like it matches my energy and my positive outlook on life. plus i love singing it to Mister Man.
  4. if you had to live in a decade other than the current one, which would you choose? 
    oh gosh. this one is tough. i would say the 1940s, but later on in the decade once the war was over. people were just so GOOD back in that time.
  5. beauty product you can’t live without.
    concealer. no debate. funny story: when a friend of ours was entering the religious life, mama hools and i made her ask her mother superior if the sisters were allowed to wear concealer, because we can’t live without it and wanted to know if we could have been nuns in another life. the answer was no, and now my mom and i are confident we are in the right vocations. the end.
  6. are you a morning person or a night owl? 
    i am a total night owl, but am practicing (LIES!) to be a morning person. did you hear that sound just now? that was my husband laughing.
  7. what is your favorite season of the year?
    fall is my favorite. minnesota gets a bad rap for just being cold all that time, but you guys, our summers are REDONK. humidity, heat index in the 100s, it’s no joke. fall is my happy place.
  8. your favorite meal. 
    i have way too many. but if i had to choose, it would be the cajun jiffy blucy (a burger with peanut butter, mayo, pickle, bacon, pepper jack in the middle) with buffalo tater tots from the blue door. it’s like a heart attack on a plate, but i dream about it sometimes.
  9. three favorite online shopping websites.
    i’m on a shopping freeze right now, so i’ve almost forgotten what my favorites are. i’d say etsy, zappos, and target (free shipping!)
  10. which justice league hero are you? 
    i had to look up which heroes were part of the justice league. i seriously had no idea. probably the flash? because i’m incredibly slow in real life.
  11. post it notes or push pinned papers? 
    post its. local invention represent!

11 random facts about myself

  1. i am the oldest of five children.
  2. i have had the following random ailments, all before the age of 13: shingles, whooping cough, and an appendectomy.
  3. in high school, i lettered in academics, choir and golf (for being on the team for three years) before i lettered in tennis, the only athletic sport i played.
  4. i secretly signed a 9-month lease the summer before joe and i got engaged, because i wanted to be able to get out of it if we got married within the year. whoops.
  5. i speak (almost) fluent spanish and have my certificate in spanish-english translation.
  6. my favorite movie in the whole world is the little mermaid, and i wore out the vhs we had at my parents house.
  7. the scariest thing i’ve done in the last year was sign my name on the dotted line when we bought our house; i’m pretty sure that i didn’t breathe the whole time. (a close second scary time was announcing the hooley with a ‘z’ facebook page to the world. pure terror. please head over and like it if you haven’t yet, it will make me feel better.)
  8. cats freak me out.
  9. my second and third toes are longer than my big toe.
  10. i changed my middle name to my maiden name when we got married.
  11. i strongly believe that babies will be easier to take care of than dogs, albeit with more middle of the night wakeups than dogs.

my nominations for the liebster award

trisha from the dish by trish || haley from les petites joies || etley from etley enlightens

my questions for you

  1. what is your favorite feature on yourself?
  2. what is your honest opinion – complimentary and/or critical – about my own blog?
  3. tell me your go-to recipe for dinner!
  4. do you have a guilty pleasure tv show?
  5. pie or cake?
  6. sweet or salty?
  7. what is your favorite grown-up movie?
  8. do you have any favorite words of wisdom?
  9. what is your most worn piece of clothing?
  10. do you have a favorite season? what is it?
  11. give me one piece of blogging advice.

woohoo! thanks for being you kids!

(if i didn’t include you, it’s because i don’t know about you yet! come out of the woodwork and participate too!)


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thirsty thursday: blueberry basil gin spritzer.

it’s the last thirsty thursday of july today! i’m back over at trisha’s spot with a delicious (if i do say so myself) hendrick’s gin cocktail. i thought it was only right to finish this series the way we started. with hendrick’s. hop on over to her blog for the recipe!

have a happy day! (click here, here and here for our other thirsty thursday recipes…)

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thirsty thursday: boozy cherry limeade.

thank you everyone for the awesome well-wishes on the new home! we are pretty excited and have started rolling up our sleeves to get the place ready to move into next week. i’ll be taking photos and blogging here and there, but again, need a little help from my friends to keep this baby alive and well.

it’s that time again…thirsty thursday! trisha’s back with maybe one of the best looking drinks i’ve ever seen. cherries, lime, booze. summer nectar is what that is. thank you for the awesome recipe lady, i’m thinking you might need to open a shop that focuses solely on cupcakes and cocktails. i’ll volunteer to test all your recipes! 


It’s no secret that we take cocktails pretty seriously here in Wisconsin. One drink we take almost as seriously as the Green Bay Packers is the Old Fashioned. In fact, here in Madison we even have a restaurant called The Old Fashioned, which serves the best of Wisconsin eats and drinks. Think Friday night fish fry, pickled eggs, bratwursts, prime rib, local beers, and of course, Old Fashioneds. Where am I going with this, you ask?

Well, the key to the perfect Old Fashioned is the muddling. And I just happen to love this part of cocktail making so I incorporated it into a tart, summery beverage, just for you!
cherry limeade

This drink is pretty customizable to your own personal taste. I went more on the tart side of things, but you can certainly make it as sweet or sour as you’d like by adding more sugar, more lime, more bitters, etc.

boozy cherry limeade

Boozy Cherry Limeade

4-6 cherries, stems and pits removed
-I used Bing cherries, but use any type you’ve got. Even go with maraschino if you want this super sweet!
2-4 lime wedges
a few splashes of bitters
-again, as much or as little as you’d like- I used 1 heaping teaspoon
vodka/gin/rum of choice
sparkling water/club soda/Sprite

Place fruit, sugar, bitters, and a splash of sparkling water/club soda/Sprite in a cocktail glass and muddle until cherries are pretty mashed up. At this point you can strain the juice into a new glass if you prefer to have your drink without the chunks of fruit.
Fill glass with ice.
Add booze. 1-2 ounces. 3 if you’re having a rough day.
Top with lemonade and another splash of sparkling water/club soda/Sprite.

Drink it up!

*While I don’t mind a few chunks in my drinks, I did end up straining my drink after cherries clogged my straw within the first few sips. To each their own!


I’d especially like to raise a glass of this goodness to Erin and Mister Man in celebration of their new home! Thanks for having me again lady, and welcome to the world of homeownership!

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