Hill Collection

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Autumn Must Haves



Earlier this week, the temperature was in the low 70's and my fall-loving heart was about to explode. Goodness, it felt amazing to open the windows and let the cool breeze waft in while burning my Autumn Afternoon apothecary candle. Since we bought a house and we'll be moving in the middle of September, I haven't been able to decorate for fall. And y'all know that under any other circumstances my house would already be spruced up with all things autumn. Just see last year's décor and the year before that. I've always been and always will be a mid-August fall decorating kind of gal. Well....except this year because my house is full of boxes and everything is packed away. But, that hasn't kept me from dreaming of fall and how I'll decorate my new house! 

To bide my time, I put together some of my very favorite items for making things all cozy and fall-like in your home. From blankets for wrapping up in and cotton garland for draping over your mantel to a carafe and mugs for sipping your pumpkin coffee, I've got you covered on the essentials. 

And here are some fall pieces that aren't pictured, but that I absolutely adore!

Pre-lit Rattan Pumpkins (my pre-lit vine pumpkins are some of my favorites) || Pumpkin-shaped Pillow (you'll be seeing this in my décor this year) || Harvest Beaded Pillow


What are your favorite items for autumn decorating?? You better believe while I'm decorating that I have a candle (or two!) burning to really set the mood for autumn! And in the spirit of almost-fall, Twine & Cotton is offering 10% off of your candle order now through this Saturday!! Use this coupon code on your order:


ALMOSTFALL



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Thank you for supporting this blog!

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Dutch Oven Pot Roast

In almost three years of marriage husband and I have unsuccessfully tried to figure out the perfect recipe for pot roast. We've tried it in the slow cooker, in the oven, and have yet to find a recipe and method that we love. We're picky about it too, which makes it that much more difficult to settle for any ole pot roast. 

Then this last Sunday happened. Let me first say, Sunday is my favorite day for a slow cooking meal where the aroma fills up your house while you rest and relax in the family room with your people. Any who, on this particular Sunday we finally found the best way to not only cook, but season a pot roast for pure perfection. And the two of us couldn't have been giddier about it. Maybe I was the only giddy one, husband was just very pleased with having a meat-heavy meal :)



  • What You'll Need
    • 3-4 lb chuck roast
    • 1 lb bag, whole carrots (peeled)
    • 1 large, yellow onion (quartered)
    • 5 garlic cloves
    • 32 oz beef stock
    • 2 TBSP Worcestershire sauce
    • 1 TBSP dried parsley 
    • 1 TSP thyme 
    • Salt & pepper for seasoning
    • Olive oil
    • Brown rice (for serving)

  • What You'll Do
    • Drizzle the dutch oven with olive oil. Put on medium/high heat.
    • Salt all sides of the roast. Put in the hot oil and sear on each side for 6-9 minutes until the meat has turned dark. 
    • In a separate bowl mix the beef stock, Worcestershire sauce, parsley, thyme
    • Remove the meat from the dutch oven, and add the quartered onion around the edge of the pot. Place the peeled carrots in the middle. 
    • Tuck the peeled garlic cloves into the folds of the roast. Next place it on top of the carrots.
    • Pour the beef stock mixture over the meat. Bring it to a low boil, and let simmer with the lid on for 3-4 hours or until the meat falls apart.
    • Serve over rice (we used Brown Minute Rice, prepared 15 minutes before the meat was done).



This meal turned out perfectly. Truly, I could gush over it again and again. The meat was super tender, falling apart as we separated it in the dutch oven. The carrots and onions were the perfect complement. This will definitely be one of our staple meals this fall as the weather cools off and the air gets crisp. Our house smelled delightful from this dutch oven pot roast cooking all afternoon. If you're a morning church-goer, this is a great meal to put on when you get home. Serve this pretty pot roast roast + veggies over rice and you've got a wholesome, delicious meal for your Sunday evening. 

Also, if you don't have a dutch oven, I couldn't recommend getting one more! We absolutely love ours (it's a Cuisinart we found at a great price at TJMaxx a couple of years ago)! We cook a ton of meals in it from soups and this pot roast to artisan bread. It's worth investing in!

Here are some options if you're looking for one: 

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Thank you for supporting this blog!

Monday, August 22, 2016

His Last First Day of School Ever!

It's back-to-school in this house today! But it looks a lot different than sending of tiny tikes with too-big backpacks and matching lunch boxes. Instead, I'm sending off my twenty-something husband to his first day of his last semester of graduate school and his last first day of school ever. This has been a long time coming, my friends! Do you remember his very first day of grad school two years ago?!

Although there have been moments when time seems to crawl along, for the most part this graduate school journey has gone by so quickly, especially when we are looking back on it. If you're new to the blog let me catch you up...husband is a mechanical engineer pursuing his master's degree while working full-time, being a husband and a new dad. He's been a rockstar over these last two years, and I know that he is going to finish out these next four months strong. He makes me one proud lady.

Come December, when the snow is bristling about, the temperatures in the mountains of Virginia are cold enough to make you wish you didn't have to leave your house, and all the Christmas décor is out, we'll be celebrating all of his hard work as he graduates. It's going to be a very sweet milestone for this guy of mine. A very deserved celebration indeed!

Do you remember last year at this time when I was swooning over what husband's back-to-school picture would look like with a baby girl on his hip?!?! Well here it is, and I'm all kinds of heart eyes over it. Husband is setting a wonderful example of pursuing dreams, excelling academically, holding down a career, and being present at home for his little girl. She is so very lucky to cal him daddy, and I'm thankful for his dedication to being the best not just for me, but for her. A rockstar, I tell you, he is a rockstar. And he even agreed to take these first day of school pictures for a third year in a row....have I told you enough how much of a rockstar he is???

This year, since it's his last semester and all the encouragement and kind words to finish strong are welcome, I thought it would be fun to leave some comments for this guy! He's behind a lot of my blogging, from helping to take photos and being my right-hand man on DIY projects to taste-testing recipes. So if you feel inclined, let's cheer him on! The next four months will be strategic and time-consuming as he finishes his thesis paper, and I want him to feel all the support as he takes it on! 

Greer and I are so proud of you husband, more than you know! xo


And for a little look into the past:


Thursday, August 18, 2016

Just A Swingin'

One of my very favorite childhood things to do was to swing. To see how hard I could pump my legs and just how high that would take me. So you can only imagine my excitement when the time finally arrived to take Greer swinging. I hoped she would love it and not be timid about swinging. And y'all, she loved it. She's always been a huge fan of the breeze blowing through her hair and being rocked. Combine the two and you have a very delighted baby. It makes me all the more excited to move into our home and put Greer's own swing up. There's a tree with the perfect branch in our new backyard just asking for sturdy rope to be wound around it with a sweet swing hanging from it. 

If you love baby smiles keep scrolling for our swinging adventures. Plus, we captured some time on the playground. We think she's going to be a huge fan once she's old enough to navigate it herself. Her pure joy is contagious, and she's going to melt your heart, I'm telling you now. And her sun hat, oh that sun hat that she nows prefers to take off instead of leave on....you're going to swoon! 

















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