Quick And Easy Fall Treats With A Healthy Twist

Quick And Easy Fall Treats With A Healthy Twist

I know fall officially started two weeks ago, but here in Southern California is just started… like last night. Last night it rained for the first time in who knows how long! I woke up this morning to crisp fall air and the prettiest sunrise. I’m just praying the weather is here to stay.

Something about fall makes me want to bake all the things. I want my house to smell like a fresh loaf of pumpkin bread every time I walk in. Can’t you just smell it now? YUM! Assuming you feel the same, I thought I would share three quick and easy fall recipes that will make fill your home with the delicious scent of fall and satisfy your sweet tooth all at the same time.

Stewed Apples with Cinnamon By Eat Beautiful

Recipe Credit: Eat Beautiful (SUCH a great book!)

Ingredients:

6 cooking apples, peeled, cored, and cut into bite sized pieces

1 cup boiling water

1 tbsp honey

1 ½ tsp vanilla extract

1 tsp ground cinnamon

2 tbsp natural Greek yogurt to serve (optional)

Directions:

  1. Place the apple pieces in a medium saucepan and add the hot water. Add the honey, vanilla and cinnamon and stir to combine.
  2. Cover, bring to a simmer and cook over gentle heat for 20 minutes
  3. When the apples are soft or caramel covered, remove from the heat and serve and serve with the yogurt and additional honey.

Candied Nuts

Photo Credit: Two Peas and Their Pod

One of my coworkers brought these candies nuts to work and I don’t think I’ve tasted anything more delicious in my entire life. Seriously, they’re THAT good. Cannot wait for you to try them!

Ingredients:

1/2 cup butter

1 cup brown sugar

1 tsp cinnamon

4 cups pecans or walnuts

Directions:

  1. In covered bowl, microwave butter for 1 minute or until melted. 
  2. Stir in brown sugar and microwave for 2 minutes. Stir. 
  3. Add cinnamon and nuts. Stir well to coat. 
  4. Microwave in high for 3 to 5 minutes. Pour out on parchment or wax paper to cool.

Almond Milk Chai Latte by The Foodie Teen

Photo and Recipe Credit: The Foodie Teen

Ingredients:

2 cups (500ml) unsweetened almond milk or pecan milk

2 chai tea bags

2 tbsp maple syrup

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp ground cloves

1 tsp ground nutmeg

coconut whipped cream, as topping

Directions:

  1. In a saucepan over medium heat, warm the nut milk until it just starts to simmer, then immediately remove from heat.
  2. Add the chai tea bags and leave to steep for 5 minutes. Remove and discard the tea bags, then add the rest of the ingredients and whisk well to combine. Taste and adjust sweetness or spice to your liking, then pop it back over low heat for a few minutes until warmed through. Transfer the mixture to a blender and blend for 20-30 seconds, until frothy, then transfer to mugs.
  3. Serve warm with a dollop of coconut whipped cream if you wish!

My Hacker Story

My Hacker Story

 

The Story

Day 1

It all started when I woke up Monday morning and started getting ready for the gym. I was ready to kick the week off right, but was in for quite the surprise! Before heading out the door I checked my emails real quick and there was one that caught my eye. It was titled ‘HACK!’ and here is what it said:

It seemed so surreal that I immediately thought it was a fraudulent email, but went to check my Instagram just to be sure. Turns out this email was anything but fake. Not only was I unable to login to my account, but when you searched for halfway_wholeistic the account didn’t even exist. 

“Jordan, my Instagram account has been hacked and completely deleted.”, I said waking my poor husband out of a deep sleep. Mondays are rough, but today was destined to challenge me beyond the post-weekend blues. Jordan and I immediately started brainstorming ideas of what to do and who we could contact. We had a few people on the case with the hope that we could grab the attention of Instagram or Facebook to have them resolve this issue for us. Huge shoutouts are in order to @redbirdsocialco, @thespoiledhome, @cynthiaharper, @laineandlayne, @aedriel, @thebloomingnest, @ahousewithbooks, @anitayokota, and my sweet mom and all her prayer warriors for all their support in trying to get my account back. To anyone else who posted about my account in their stories, I appreciate you more than you know even if I wasn’t able to see it!

It was late on the first day that I noticed an account named halfway_wholesitic_q1809 had liked some of my friends’ photos. This was a bit of a breakthrough because I knew he hadn’t deleted my account after all, but rather just changed the name and was holding it hostage until we paid. 

Day 2

As we worked to try and resolve this, the hacker managed to send upwards of 50 emails threatening to delete everything if we didn’t pay him immediately. He was asking for $250 in exchange for my Instagram account that he promised to return within 15 minutes of payment. Obviously we had no reason to believe he was being trustworthy about this exchange, but we also figured it was worth losing $250 to see if by chance we could get the account back. I wouldn’t advocate paying a hacker. I felt so bad giving in to his scheme and perpetuating the problem, but the auto replies from Instagram saying there was nothing they could do seemed to leave me with no choice. We stalled for a day to see if we could make any headway in finding a solution, but decided to finally pay him the following day. After constant hounding from the mystery man via email prior to payment, he finally got his money and we haven’t heard from him since. 

I felt so incredibly defeated at this point. Not only had the hacker stolen something I had worked so hard for over the past three years, but he also stole my money and kept what was rightfully mine without a care in the world. I started to allow myself to accept that it was most likely gone for good.

From the moment this nightmare began, Romans 8 came to my mind and I found myself quietly reciting it throughout the day. The reality is there are a lot bigger problems in the world than the loss of my Instagram. Perspective is so important. And while I am beyond grateful I was able to regain my account, I’m even more grateful that the thing that is most important to me cannot ever be taken away. Not by a hacker, not by the loss of my Instagram account, and not by the encounter of any hardship I will face. The love of God is truly all we can count on as a constant in this life, and I’m so glad it can never be taken away. 

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

In a world that too often tempts us to put our trust into social media, wealth, fame, and success… don’t forget to ground yourself in faith.

Day 3

Late on the night of the second day, we had an idea to call one of Jordan’s childhood friends who we thought might know someone with a connection to Facebook or Instagram. It was a long shot to say the least, but we knew finding someone with a connection to one of those companies was really our only hope of getting someone on the case. We forwarded the whole saga of a story to our friend Corey, who passed it along to his friend that works at Facebook. By the end of day 3, they had the entire issue resolved and my account was back up and running.

WOW. so incredibly thankful for these diligent Facebook employees who cared enough to take on my case. I’m even more grateful to be back in contact with all of you, my sweet friends! It’s truly one of the joys of my life to be able to create and connect with other like-minded people here at Halfway Wholeistic. 

Tips for Staying Safe:

  1. Turn on two factor authentication in your Instagram settings. This will require you to use a code sent to your phone any time a new sign-in takes place. I did not have this turned on prior to getting hacked.
  2. Change your sign-in email to one that is not used for anything else. I don’t know for sure how the hacker got into my account, but I do know it is fairly easy to do without the two-factor authentication turned on and if the email you use to login is listed in your account. I have now changed my Instagram login email to a brand new email account that can’t be found anywhere else and will not be used for any other purpose but to login to Instagram.
  3. Create a difficult password and change it monthly.
  4. Don’t ever respond to emails asking for account info!
  5. Sign up for Facebook Business Manager if you run your Instagram account as a business profile.

What To Do If Your Instagram Account Gets Hacked:

There’s no great solution for getting your account back. I know many people that got theirs back after months of persistently reporting it to Instagram, and others that never did. Really the only thing you can do is report it daily, have others report it for you, and try and find a direct contact of someone who works at Facebook or Instagram that can resolve it for you. I truly hope they come up with a better solution soon! 

Staying Connected:

I felt so powerless when I lost my Instagram account because I had no real way to reach all my sweet followers and friends. It made me realize the importance of having everyone signed up through my blog in case something ever does happen again!

CLICK HERE to enter your email and make sure you’re on the list so I have a way to communicate with all of you in the future if need be!

Thanks again for being here. For following along and supporting my blog. For showing up to say that you care when things don’t go as planned. It all goes to show that social media goes well beyond pretty pictures as it allows us to connect and share life with people we may not have otherwise met. Thankful for each and every one of you!

How to Incorporate Candles into Fall Décor with Chesapeake Bay Candle

How to Incorporate Candles into Fall Décor with Chesapeake Bay Candle
This is a paid advertorial with Chesapeake Bay Candle

Fall is my absolute favorite time of year. There’s just something about this season that’s so inviting and cozy! I mean, what’s not to love about pumpkin spice lattes and sweater weather? Making our home feel festive for fall is one of my greatest joys of the season. Adding fresh greenery, cute pumpkins, and warmer tones throughout the house are just a few ways I like to set the mood for the season. But I must say, my absolute favorite way to bring fall into our home is through candles! I long for the sweet smell of fall all year long and am so happy to share my very favorite fall candles with you guys today.

I’m pretty picky when it comes to candles. I not only want them to smell delicious, but I want them to look pretty too! For the past few years I’ve been incorporating Chesapeake Bay Candle’s Heritage Collection in our home throughout the fall and holiday season. Each candle is infused with essential oil fragrances that add warmth and character to your home through their glowing ambiance. But even more than that, their simple, clean, and modern lines create a perfect focal point for your fall décor. Here are three tips for incorporating Chesapeake Bay Candles into your fall décor this year!

Tips for Decorating with Fall Candles:

  1. Style the candles with fresh fall greenery. My favorites are eucalyptus and olive stems!
  2. Play on the minimal design of the Heritage Collection by adding white pumpkins to compliment the candle.
  3. Place your candles throughout your home on coffee tables, side tables, and countertops. This will be sure to make it feel like fall no matter where you are!

My Favorite Scents from the Heritage Collection:

Chestnut & Acorn Large Jar Candle

An earthy, nutty aroma with rich vanilla notes, reminiscent of the perfect fall stroll through the park, includes comforting notes of roasted chestnuts, brown sugared pecans, and cinnamon. Acorns, maple trees, and fall leaves paint the landscape with warm autumn colors.  

Pumpkin Latte Small Jar Candle

Relax by the crackling fire and enjoy a simmering pumpkin latte topped with brown sugar, maple and creamy vanilla. The aroma of praline, pecans, and pumpkin frosting fills the room as we watch the leaves slowly fall from trees throughout the crisp autumn afternoon.

Beach Bonfire Small Jar Candle

A sunset on the beach brings in a cold air accord as deep resinous oud, fir needle and cracked peppercorn rise with the wood smoke of an evening bonfire as notes of worn leather and woodland musk dance under the stars.   

Woodland Berry Large Jar Candle

Sparkling fruity top notes of juicy red berries, apple and wild black currant are carried along a botanical meadow breeze of rose, gardenia, and lily of the valley as white musk and fresh violet leaves balance this refreshingly natural fruity accord.

Balsam Fir Coffee Table Jar Candle

As we look forward to celebrating the holiday season, decorate trees, and gather with family and friends, the scent of evergreen pine, fresh balsam, and spiced pomander sets the joyful atmosphere. Hints of clove, amber, and spearmint provide fresh and uplifting notes to the festivities.   

I truly hope you love these candles as much as I do. The beautiful design and gorgeous aroma of the Heritage Collection will be sure to make your home feel like fall this season. Click on any of the links above to grab one for yourself, and don’t forget to tell me which one is your favorite! 

 

Labor Day Sales

Labor Day Sales
cover photo credit: studio mcgee

photo credit: amber interiors

It’s nearly impossible to ignore all the amazing Labor Day sales going down this year. I thought I’d make shopping a bit easier for you by providing a full sale roundup! Just click the links below to shop each store, or scroll down to see a few of my favorites! Hope you all have a restful, relaxing long weekend!

Abercrombie & Fitch – 40% off site wide

Allmodern – 15% off with code SHUCKS

Allswell – 20% off site wide with code LABORDAY

American Eagle – 25-60% off

Ann Taylor – 40%-50% off with code READYSETSALE

asos – 20% off site wide with code DAYOFF

CB2 – 15% off your purchase with code SAVE15

FitFlop – Up to 25%

J.Crew – 40% off your purchase with code BIGSALE

LOFT – 40% off your purchase with code LABORDAY

Macy’s – Up to 10% off. Take an extra 20% off the Macy’s Labor Day Sale with code WKND, plus free shipping starting at $49

McGee & Co. – 15 % off furniture + rugs + wall decor with code RELAX

Old Navy – 50% off jeans + tees + sweatshirts + dresses

Pottery Barn – 15-30% off with code SAVEMORE

Rejuvenation – 20% off entire order + free shipping with code: FREESHIP

Shopbop – Up to 70% off clothing + shoes + accessories

Target – get up to 30% off + an extra 15% off furniture, rugs, bedding & more!

Urban Outfitters – extra 30% off sale items

Wayfair – Up to 75% off

West Elm – 15-30% off with code SAVEMORE

World Market – 30% off all regular price furniture with code FURN30

Shop My Favorites

How To Make A Moodboard Without Computer Software

How To Make A Moodboard Without Computer Software
This is a paid advertorial with Corian® Design. All opinions are my own.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned about design, it’s that creating beautiful spaces takes a lot of thought and planning. It’s important to pair textures and tones prior to making any purchases to ensure cohesiveness. A lack of planning can result in a major design fail… we’ve all been there before and it’s not pretty!

Since I started doing interior design for clients on a more regular basis, I found myself searching for a way to create quick and easy moodboards. Enter Corian® Design’s free moodboard maker! Many of you may know Corian® for their gorgeous countertop selection, but they’ve recently launched a design brand with multiple materials including Corian® Quartz as well as this design tool that makes it easy for me to create moodboards for all my projects. The fun thing about it is, you can even download or order a print of your moodboard. Slide it into a pretty frame and you’ve got yourself a free piece of artwork! I decided to print mine and absolutely love the look.

I’m so glad I found Corian’s free moodboard maker, and know you all will love it too! Whether you’re working on a project of your own, one for a client, or just want to design a piece of custom artwork, this single tool has got you covered. Click here to get started!

Hope you found this post helpful. Can’t wait to see how you use Corian’s Moodboard Maker!

My Go-To Gift For Clients With Greetabl

My Go-To Gift For Clients With Greetabl
This is a paid advertorial with Greetabl. All thoughts and content are my own!

Since launching Katie Staples Designs last month, I’ve been searching for the perfect ‘thank you’ gift for my design clients. I think it’s so important to extend gratitude in a personal and meaningful way, especially to those that have trusted you with their homes! Knowing that my business would require ongoing gifting, I wanted to find something that was simple and quick, but also very personal to each client.

When I first paid a visit to Greetabl’s website many months ago, I was so impressed with the product and the process. They make it easy to create a personalized gift that will make your friends and clients feel appreciated… All in a matter of minutes! You start by selecting a print for the box, choose a gift or two, and then add a personal message and photos that can be uploaded directly from your files or social media platforms.

While this product is definitely my go-to gift for clients, it can also be used for personal gifting as well. I would highly recommend it for birthdays, anniversaries, baby showers, the list could go on! Below is an example of a gift I made for a design client. Feels good to know they will feel appreciated.

CLICK HERE to get started with Greetabl! There are so many fun ways to use their product, and I know you will find the process quick, easy, and fun.

Be sure to use the code HALFWAYWHOLEISTIC for 15% OFF your order!

Vintage Landscape Art Prints

Vintage Landscape Art Prints

*Click the pictures below to shop

There’s something about vintage landscapes that have been catching my eye lately. The soft lines and muted colors just seem like the perfect complement to a neutral space. Adds just the right amount of texture and color! I’ve been looking for the perfect piece to add to our home, and honestly love this one from Studio McGee, but the price tag kept me from making the final purchase. Not that it’s even really THAT expensive, I just wanted to make sure it was something I really wanted before buying it.

Over the weekend I had one of those spontaneous design moments where I decided to add some art to our dining room on a whim. I was originally planning on buying this one from Target, but wasn’t able to track it down locally. They say when one door closes another one opens, and that was definitely the case here! haha. I’m so glad I didn’t purchase the artwork from Target because I love my plan B so much more.

While on my unsuccessful trip to Target, I came across these gorgeous frames for just $17. I purchased two of them and knew if I could find the perfect artwork, they would be just what I was looking for. When I got home, I started looking online for vintage landscape prints. I was looking for a digital download (mostly for instant gratification ha!) but also because I would have control over the final color and tone of the artwork. In case you might be unfamiliar, digital prints can be edited after purchase on any photo editing software or app. I did alter the color of these prints to appear more muted and subtle. Here’s what I did!

How To Buy, Edit, and Print the Artwork:

1. Purchase landscape print 1 and download it to your iPhone
2. Purchase landscape print 2 and download it to your iPhone
3. Save the prints to your phone
4. Open the image in the ‘Color Story’ app (this can be downloaded in the App Store)
5. Purchase the ‘Flashes of Delight’ editing package within the app
6. Apply the ‘Valerie’ filter to edit the pictures. I used the filter at about 50% intensity.
7. I also adjusted the saturation in the Snapseed app until the colors were muted to my liking.
8. Once the pictures were edited, I used the kiosk at CVS to print my artwork. I printed them straight from my phone in a satin finish, without a border, and in an 8×10.
9. And finally… I framed them in these sleek frames!

Before And After Editing:

Other Options to Reduce the Saturation:

Use any photo editing app on your computer or phone to simply reduce the saturation. I like to use Adobe Light Room on my computer and the Snapseed app on my iPhone.

So glad you guys like the new artwork! Can’t wait to see how you style it in your homes. Make sure to send me a picture on Instagram if you do!

Don’t forget to subscribe to Halfway Wholeistic to receive post notifications, giveaways, and an occasional newsletter! Thanks so much for following along.

 

 

 

 

 

Summer Patio Decor + Our New Hanging Chair

Summer Patio Decor + Our New Hanging Chair
This post is a collaboration with Joss & Main. All opinions and product selections are my own.

Summer is finally here and I’m finding myself spending a lot more time outside. I’ve also found myself adding a few more pieces to our back patio, and gathered tons of inspiration from the gorgeous pieces at Joss and Main! They have so many beautiful products that will be sure to get your backyard ready for summertime.

I finally got around to hanging our swing chair the other day, and love the way it looks! You can find this exact chair below and also check out a few of the other products I rounded up from Joss & Main. Safe to say I want every single piece!

It doesn’t take much to create a dreamy backyard oasis. Seating, lighting, and a few fun accessories should do the trick! What are your must-haves when it comes to outdoor decor?

I hope you found a little inspiration in today’s post! Be sure to check out all of my other favorite products from Joss & Main in the table below.

 

 

 

 

 

Margot Patio Cooler

This Patio Cooler //
More Outdoor Coolers

Wanda Hanging Chair

This Hanging Chair //
More Hammocks & Swing Chairs

Straight Pitcher

This Pitcher //
More Pitchers

Fortunato Modern Outdoor Barn Light

This Outdoor Light //
More Ourdoor Wall Lights & Flush Mounts

Beverage Dispenser Tag

This Dispenser Tag //
More Ceramic Drink Dispenser

Bigler Terra Cotta Pitcher

This Terra Cotta Pitcher //
More White Drink Dispensers

Cordie Basket Weave Doormat

This Doormat //
More Doormats

Mia 33 Oz. Decanter

This Decanter //
More Medium Beverage Dispensers

Bradley Papasan Outdoor Chair

This Patio Lounge Chair //
More Patio Lounge Chairs

15 Light Globe String Lights

This Set of String Lights //
More String Lights

Swing Bottle Decanter

This Decanter //
More Decanters

Clarissa End Table

This End Table //
More End Tables

Diamond Hand-Woven Platinum/White Indoor/Outdoor Area Rug

This Rug //
More Geometric Rugs

Alicea Hand-Woven Black Area Rug

This Rug //
More Area Rugs

Carla Light Brown/Ivory Indoor/Outdoor Area Rug

This Outdoor Rug //
More Outdoor Rugs

Ardagh Hand-Woven Ivory Indoor/Outdoor Area Rug

This Rug //
More Handmade/Hand-Woven Rugs

Bacchus Loveseat with Cushions

This Outdoor Sofa //
More Outdoor Sofas

Smetana Outdoor Throw Pillow

This Pillow //
More Pillows

Brierley Propane Fire Pit Table

This Fire Pit //
More Fire Pits

Cardella Breakfast Pillow

This Pillow //
More Boudoir/Breakfast Pillows

Celia Hammock Chair

This Hammock Chair //
More Shabby Hammock& Swing Chairs

Hodson Mini Carafe

This Carafe //
More Drink & Beverage Dispensers

3-Piece Beachwood Pot Planter Set

This Planter Set //
More Planters

3-Piece Harriett Acacia Dining Set

This Dining Set //
More Dining Sets

Our Beach Vacation + A Summer Inspired Outfit Roundup

Our Beach Vacation + A Summer Inspired Outfit Roundup

Jordan and I spent the past weekend in Capistrano Beach, CA with our family to celebrate Father’s Day and enjoy the start of summer. We rented a beach house and enjoyed relaxing with an ocean view. If you haven’t traveled to Southern California, I would definitely recommend it! Capistrano, Laguna, and Dana Point are all beautiful spots to stay seaside and soak up the best that California has to offer. Click here to see the house we stayed in!

If you do happen to visit California or are heading on a vacation soon, here is a quick roundup of things I wore on our trip that are perfect for summer.

Day 1: linen pants / bikini top / bikini bottoms (and here) / lace cami / hat (similar) / sunglasses / crossbody bag
Day 2: jean shorts / striped shirt / bamboo purse / sunglasses (knockoff) (real) / towel (similar)
Day 3: dress / jean jacket / platform wedges / clutch (similar here)/ sunglasses

linen pants / bikini top / bikini bottoms (and here) / lace cami / hat (similar) / sunglasses / crossbody bag

We decided to stay at the beach house for most of the time this trip, but there are so many fun shops and restaurants around here! One of my favorite places to eat is Nick’s. The atmosphere and food are top quality, and there are lots of great shops to peek in when you’re done! My mom and I will actually be going there for lunch today, so stop by my Instagram stories for the inside scoop!

jean shorts / striped shirt bamboo purse / sunglasses (knockoff) (real) / towel (similar)

Back to the outfit details… While I was packing for this trip, I noticed a common theme. Maybe you spotted it too. Hello STRIPES! Blue and white stripes are perfect for summer in my opinion. Cute and casual with a bit of a nautical flare. This striped tee shirt dress just might be the most comfortable thing I own. The fabric is amazing!

dress / jean jacket / platform wedges / clutch (similar here)/ sunglasses

Are you planning any vacations this summer? If you are I would love to hear where you’re off to!

Thanks so much for stopping by today. Don’t forget to subscribe to receive weekly roundups and giveaways. Have a great week! 

 

The Perfect Swimsuit + My Summer Essentials

The Perfect Swimsuit + My Summer Essentials

School is officially out for summer which means two things… time for swimsuits and sunshine! (until I start teaching summer school next week anyway. ha!) Jordan and I are heading down to a beach house this weekend to enjoy the summer sun with my family, which was the inspiration for my post for today! In today’s post I’m sharing a few of my favorite summer essentials with you.

When I saw this swimsuit online last week, I knew it was going to be a keeper. It didn’t disappoint when I tried it on in the store either! I’m such a sucker for stripes and think the single shoulder strap and cutout make for a super flattering fit. True confession: I don’t think I’ve worn a one piece since I was 11 years old, but I just couldn’t pass this one up!

Click on the links below to shop the suit and all my other summer essentials!

Do you guys have any fun summer plans? Hopefully these summer essentials will make the heat a little more bearable!

sunglasses / button through tank / neck scarf / maxi dress / greece sandals / bamboo purse / tanning lotion / jean shorts / striped swimsuit / hat / turkish beach towel / black jumpsuit

 

 

 

 

 

 

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