Top 6 Most Used Bridal Shower Gifts

Hi friends! Happy Thursday. Can you all believe May is already coming to an end? Some days it feels like time is moving faster than ever. It has been a short work week, but I am really excited the weekend is just about here. I have a bunch of things to do around the house on Friday. There’s nothing better than knocking things off to-do list in my book. We have really been focusing on sprucing up our yard and patio area. I am planning on getting things started early, so I can end Friday with a mani/pedi in preparation for our besties’ wedding! I have been reflecting on all of excitement I felt during the week of my wedding, so I feel extra excited for them. Fun fact, the bride used my wedding planning check list (click here)!

Today I am sharing some of my most used bridal shower gifts. We have been married for about a year and a half, and I have been using gifts from my bridal shower for almost two. Whether you are looking to create your own bridal registry or spruce up your kitchen with some new purchases, keep reading. Here are my most used bridal shower gifts!

Although it took us weeks to finally open our new Keurig once we did it quickly became our most used gift. Initially, I was unsure if I wanted a Keurig machine of this size for two reasons. I wasn’t sure if we actually needed a large Keurig with a water reservoir {previously had a single serve} and I like to keep our counters on the bare side. I decided to leave it out on the counter for a few weeks to give it what I like to call a, “visual test run.” Once we started using it, we were hooked. Making at least 2 cups of coffee per morning, it definitely gets a lot of use. We also like that this model came with a carafe. This gives us the option to make enough coffee for a small crowd {requires a different pod} without having to break out the percolator.

Making its way to a very close second place is our Nespresso machine. I would say that I am giving it the #2 spot because only my husband uses it everyday {usually more than once a day} where as we both use the Keurig. As you can tell, we love our coffee! When I registered for my shower, I didn’t envision adding an espresso machine, so I went with a basic model. Had I known how much use it would get, I would have definitely consider registering for something a little fancier. Our machine came in a bundle with a milk frother. I thought I would get tons of use out of this, but the truth is, I don’t. It always seems like one more thing I have to clean. My husband only drinks espresso, so the frother really only gets used on the occasional weekend that I make a latte.

Another most used and must have gift {in my opinion} has been this Cutting Board. I use it just about every time I cook. I like that it has rubber grips on the bottom to prevent it from slipping around while I am chopping up ingredients. A few times a month I will clean the cutting board with baking soda and vinegar or lemon to eliminate any odors that may get trapped in there {think garlic and onions!}.

If you follow me on Instagram {and if you don’t, please do!} you know how much I’ve raved about my Le Creuset Dutch oven. I have the 5.5qt round Dutch oven in white. It was a “splurge” item that I added to my registry and was thrilled when my co-workers surprised me with it. I have a whole blog post dedicated to the top 5 reason why you need one! If you’re not looking to spend a few hundred dollars on a pot or aren’t sure if you will use it enough, there are some other options you can consider. For Christmas, I got an awesome deal on a Martha Stewart Dutch oven for my mom. I was able to get her a bigger size than I have and so far she loves it. Sometimes you can also find Le Creuset and similar products by Cusinart at HomeGoods.

I really enjoy cooking {if you haven’t figured that out already}, so the Calphalon pots and pans set I received gets a lot of use. Overall, I am pretty happy with this set with the exception of one pan that always burns. I love being able to transfer pans from the stove top to the oven. Regardless of the number of cookware items you request on your registry, be sure to include a high quality oven safe pan. This comes in handy when searing steaks, pork chops, one pot chicken dinners or want to broil shrimp.

It took me forever to pick out a flatware set, but I am so happy with the set I finally chose. Flatware was actually one of my most needed kitchen items prior to my shower. I knew I wanted something of very good quality that would last for years and years. Also, the style needed to be something simple and timeless. I love that this set is big! It has 12 settings including steak knives plus 3 extra serving utensils.

Would you like me to share my least used bridal shower gifts? Let me know in the comments!

Memorial Day Sale | Kitchen Finds at Macy’s

Good morning friends! There are a lot of sales going on this weekend and although I am not shopping all of them, I have my eye on a few finds at Macy’s. I have been loving the color scheme of the Martha Stewart Collection. My house is predominately white, grey and beige with mixes of pale and navy blues. One of my top home decor tips is to keep your color scheme consistent. This approach helps the whole house feel connected. The Martha Stewart line fits right in to our home.

Before getting into today’s finds, I want to share one of my best online shopping tips. I always use Rakuten (formerly Ebates) when possible. When you sign-up through my link, you’ll automatically earn $10 (I will earn $25) towards your next shopping trip. Refer your friends and you’ll earn extra too.

When you shop through Rakuten, you earn cash back for all of your purchases! To date, I have earned over $500 from my online orders. The cash back deals range from 1 – 10% or more. I have noticed that the change back rates per store change through out the week and I usually notice the highest ranges on Sunday or Monday. To make sure I never forget to shop through Rakuten, I downloaded the Rakuten extension (add-on) for Chrome. With each website you visit, the add-on will notify you of potential cash back savings.

In this post I have linked a few items I have my eye on and a few dupes of items you can already find in my kitchen. My #1 find of the sale is the Dutch Oven. Right now you can get the 6qt Dutch Oven for $69! It’s larger than the Le Cruset I have for a fraction on the price. For Christmas, I bought my mom the Martha Stewart 8qt Dutch Oven and she loves it. Definitely a great option if you’re in the market for a Dutch Oven, but don’t want to splurge on a high-end brand. To read more about why I love mine, click here.

Wooden Spoon | Towels | Dutch Oven | Rubber Tools | Cutting Board | Ice Cube Tray | Tongs | Cocktail Shaker | Cork Screw | Jigger | Tool Crock | Oil Cruet

Other staples in my kitchen include mixing spoons, plenty of tongs and a pretty tool holder (to match my Dutch Oven that’s always on display). I highly recommend having a wood cutting board with a well around the edge to catch juices. I use my wood cutting board ever time I cook.

For my bridal shower, we didn’t register for a ton of barware. Over the last few weeks we’ve been trying to stock up our bar! I found pretty low baller glasses at HomeGoods and now I am trying to find the rest. I have my eye on the Martha Stewart shaker, jigger and ice cube tray. We actually have silicone ice cube trays, but I really like how this version comes with a cover. Oversized ice cubes are great for at home cocktails.

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Gluten-Free Italian Chicken Meatballs

Good morning blog friends! Have you all recovered from this last snow storm? I still can’t believe how much snow we woke up to on Thursday. I would imagine the weathermen were thanking their lucky stars that the storm actually happened and their predictions weren’t a total flop. Although the last snow fall did make our neighborhood look like a winter wonder land, I am definitely ready for spring. Bring on the backyard BBQs and grilling for dinner!

Today I wanted to share a recipe that goes perfect with last week’s post. Along with knowing a basic sauce recipe I think you all should know how to make tasty meatballs. This isn’t quite a traditional recipe as most are made with beef. My mom usually makes hers with a combination of ground beef, pork and veal. My recipe is a little lighter made with ground chicken. If you are gluten-free make sure to always check the ingredients in your meat and poultry. It is not uncommon for gluten to be hidden in the ingredients.

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This recipe is so easy to put together {even on busy week nights} because there is not much to it. Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl, form meatballs and bake! Don’t forget that when you’re cooking poultry it’s super important to make sure it is cooked to a safe temperature, so be sure to use a cooking thermometer to check before serving. I have this one and the cover lists the required cooking temperatures for meat, pork and poultry which comes in handy.

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Chicken Meatballs

  • Servings: 2-4
  • Print

Ingredients

  • 1 lb Chicken Chop Meat
  • 1/4 cup Gluten-Free Italian Bread Crumbs
  • 1/4 cup Grated Pecorino Romano or Parmesan Cheese
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 Small Shallot or Onion
  • 2 Cloves of Garlic
  • 1/2 Tsp Salt
  • 1/4 Tsp Black Pepper

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line baking sheets with parchment paper
  • In a large bowl combine all ingredients, but do not over mix. Over mixing the ingredients can cause the meatballs to be tough. If the mixture seems very wet, add an additional 1/8-1/4 cup of bread crumbs.
  • Form the mixture into balls (again, don’t over work the meat) and place on baking sheet
  • The size of your meatballs will alter the cooking time. Plan to bake for 25-30 minutes on convection (if your oven doesn’t have that setting, bake for longer) then broil on high for about 5 minutes.
  • Use a meat thermometer to check temperature to ensure chicken is cooked to a safe temperature.

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