Everyday Emily

Southern Fashion, Beauty, and Lifestyle Blog

Baby Shower

Time is literally flying by! I'm nearing week 33 of pregnancy, and it's so hard to believe that in just a few weeks more we'll be holding a squishy baby boy in our arms. I can't wait!  I'm in full-on baby prep mode. I've been washing all of his clothes and getting everything ready for his arrival! 

Last Saturday was our baby shower thrown by my sweet family! It was a donut theme, and everything was absolutely perfect! We're so thankful for all the friends and family who spoiled us. My best friend I grew up with and her mom came down to celebrate with us, and it was such a fun weekend!

Today I just thought I'd share a few pics from the shower. My sweet friend Mamie made the cakes, and they were delicious and so beautiful. My mom, sister, and sister-in-law did all of the decor and food, and everything was perfect! So thankful for them. I hope you have a great weekend! 



Menu Monday | Nov 18-23

Happy Monday, friends! A new week means a new menu plan, and I'm ready to take on the week. I've planned several super easy meals to make my life easier. I'm a firm believer that while a home-cooked meal has its place, so does a pre-made meal every now and then. I'm aiming to cook 4 meals at home this week. If you find meal planning overwhelming, I suggest aiming to make just a few meals per week and go from there! Here's what I'll be making this week:

Monday - Chicken parmesan, caesar salad, bread - Picked the chicken parm up at Sam's Club in the pre-made meal section, and I'm excited to give it a try.
Tuesday - Air fryer marinated chicken over sesame chopped salad mix - This should be easy peasy. I usually marinate my chicken in some type of dressing. I'll throw it in the air fryer and chop it up over a salad mix from Publix!
Wednesday - Air fryer chicken fajitas (Can you tell I love my air fryer? It gives it a grilled taste without having to do any grilling!)
Thursday - Grilled cheese & tomato soup
Friday - Eat out; We have plans that evening, so I won't plan to make anything.
Saturday - Eat out - Sometimes I cook on the weekends, sometimes I don't. We'll just have to see!

What are you cooking this week? Do you have go-to easy meal ideas? I'd love if you'd share in the comments!

Baby Boy's Nursery Idea Board

It's hard to believe that I'm now 27 weeks pregnant! Where has the time gone?! I've officially started to get a belly, and so far I'm thankful to say it's been a dream pregnancy. I've had no sickness and haven't really experienced any typical side effects you hear of. Other than some weird skin changes, it's been golden, and I couldn't be happier!

We're starting to slowly put together the nursery. I think that has to be one of the most exciting parts of baby prep. We transitioned our guest room over into our office, so what once was our guest room will be the nursery for Baby Boy. The room was recently painted in Sherwin Williams Oyster Bay which is a nice calming color so we aren't bothering to repaint it.

I've had the hardest time deciding what theme we should go with in the nursery. I've settled on some form of animals with neutral tones, but I can't decide if I want to puppy photos or various other animals on the walls. Let me know in the comments what you think I should go with!

I wanted to share my idea board for the nursery with you today. I love a good balance between affordability, functionality, and style. I can't wait for everything to come together, and I'll be sure to share the finished room here in a few short months. Baby Boy, we can't wait to meet you! <3 p="">

<3 p="" style="text-align: center;">1. / 2. / 3. / 4. / 5. / 6. / 7. / 8. / 9. 

30 Second Brow Routine

While I love makeup, I would say I really only spend about 5 minutes on my makeup routine each day. Simplifying my beauty routine is important to getting me out the door on time. Over the years, I've found a good mix of products that are both effective and quick to apply!

I've been filling in my brows for quite a few years now, and I've used both pencil and liquid brow gel products. I definitely prefer brow gels for a more natural look, and it's a huge bonus that they're easier and faster to apply if you're not used to filling in your brows. While I love a good perfectly sculpted, full brow on all my favorite makeup gurus, I always feel way overdone when I try to do that on myself. So a simple quick swipe of brow gel it is for me!

You might remember last year's post when I reviewed a handful of Beautycounter products. I absolutely love that Beautycounter focuses on clean beauty while also producing high-quality makeup and skincare products that work. You would be completely surprised by how much junk is in our beauty products that can be so harmful to our bodies! Safer beauty is SO important.

My friend and Beautycounter consultant Rebecca gifted me with the Beautycounter Brilliant Brow Gel in the shade "light," and I haven't stopped using it since I received it! Between you and me, this routine probably takes me about 15 seconds total. Whether you're sporting a quick out-the-door look like I am in the photos below or you're dressing up for a night out, this brow gel will get you the look you're going for. You can see in these before photos that I have fairly sparse eyebrows. One thing to keep in mind when purchasing is to go a few shades lighter than you think. Since I don't prefer bold brows, the lightest color worked best for me!

Before applying the brow gel...

I simply swipe the product onto my brows while also shaping the hairs in the way I want them to go. Feel free to layer up and even go outside your regular brow line to create a fuller brow if that's the look you're going for.

After applying the brow gel! 
I love how it gives such a subtle change, but it really can transform your look and shape your face!
At just $24, the Beautycounter Brilliant Brow Gel is totally worth it, and the perfect small step toward creating a cleaner beauty routine.

If you're not sure what color to get or if you have any questions at all, my friend Rebecca is so sweet and would be such a great resource for you! Switching to cleaner beauty can be quite pricey, but she did mention some great promos they have going on right now featuring a free overnight resurfacing peel! You can follow and message her on Instagram or Facebook!

Oh, and if you're looking for more Beautycounter recommendations, be sure to check out my review of testing out this natural beauty line! Let me know in the comments if you use any of their products!



Trader Joes Fall Haul 2019

Fall is my favorite time of year! I don't know if it's just because it signals the beginning of the much-needed break from the brutal heat and humidity we have here in South Carolina or what, but I just love everything about it. Give me pumpkin and apple-flavored everything, and I'm one happy girl.

I also love Trader Joes, so combine TJs with my favorite season, and you can guarantee I'm going all out. I don't shop at Trader Joes on the regular for my groceries, but I love going there just to browse their specialty items that you really can't get anywhere else. I recently went on a mission to find all of their new fall goodies, and let me just say that they didn't disappoint. Today I'm sharing some items I picked up on my Trader Joes fall haul, and if it's something I tried already, I'll be sure to give my review!

 First things first... the basics. Honeycrisp apples (is any other apple worth eating?!) and spiced cider. Two of my very favorite things! I wanted to be sure to have cider on hand to make my all-time favorite tortellini sausage soup. I've tried both the apples and the cider, and they were so delicious!

The Pumpkin Cranberry Crisps are really good with cheddar cheese on top. If you are wanting to make a holiday charcuterie, these would be the perfect addition. The pumpkin biscottis are divine. I think I've had them before, and they're definitely a favorite for me. Oh, and don't even get me started on these fall leaf tortilla chips. They're almost too cute to eat!

This pecan pumpkin oatmeal looked yummy, but I've yet to try it. Let me know if you've ever had it in the comments! The apple cider jam has big chunks of apple in it, and it's very tasty. I've purchased the pumpkin bread mix last year, and it's so yummy and perfect when you need to make a snack in a pinch!

I can't wait to try this Autumnal Harvest Soup! We had the pasta and Autumnal Harvest Creamy sauce for dinner tonight, and I thought it was so delicious! Neither the pasta or the sauce have a strong pumpkin or butternut squash flavor, so don't be too leary of that. 

I love Kombucha, so I can't wait to try this seasonal flavor. And the pumpkin and apple caramel yogurts sound like dessert, so I'm sure they'll be delicious! 

Canned pumpkin... because #fall.

That wraps up my Trader Joes Fall Haul! Let me know if you pick any of these items up on your next TJ trip.

It's a BOY!

We are so excited to be welcoming a little guy into our hearts and lives in February! Bring on all the animal printed clothes and everything blue! We can't wait to meet him!

DIY Hand Sanitizer

Last year I was out with my friend, and she pulled out a little glass bottle and spritzed something on her hands. She makes her own hand sanitizer from a few ingredients and essential oils, and I fell in love with the smell. She then made me some for Christmas, and ever since, I've been obsessed. I sadly ran out of what she made me, but I was happy to be restocking and sharing the DIY process with you today! I don't remember the exact recipe that I used, but you can use this recipe as a starting point and totally tweak ingredients to get the hand sanitizer just right for you.
Here's what you'll need: 
The process is really quite simple. Combine the ingredients listed above in the glass spray bottle, shake it up and enjoy! I used witch hazel and rubbing alcohol as well. I think those two ingredients could be used in addition to the water for extra sanitizing properties.

I'd love to know if you make this hand sanitizer! 

We're having a baby!

Dress: Old Navy

We're so excited to be expecting a baby this coming February! I'm officially 14 weeks today, and we're going to try to find out the gender in an ultrasound this coming Friday. I'm team girl and Kyle's team boy, but really we just want a healthy baby.

In all reality, while we are SO excited, life's pretty much been the same for us except for a little extra tiredness from me. I have been blessed with no sickness which has been great, and I'm anticipating a visual reminder of the baby inside of me here soon.

I can't wait to find out the gender, so I can start planning the nursery. I'm so excited to decorate a new space in our house with all the cute tiny things. Baby Gutschow, we just can't wait to meet you!

Menu Monday | July 15-21, 2019

Hey there! Long time no talk. To be totally honest, I've been slacking with this little hobby of mine, but to get back into the swing of things, I thought I'd start with a good 'ole Menu Monday post! I've been trying a lot harder lately to stick to my monthly grocery budget and try new meals to cook. A few weeks ago, I got so inspired watching Kristin Stepp's "What's for dinner?" YouTube videos, so I've incorporated a few things I saw her make on her channel. Let me know in the comments what's on your menu this week!

Monday: Rotisserie chicken, Instant Pot baked potatoes, green beans
Tuesday: Burgers, air fryer french fries (just got my air fryer, and I can't wait to make these!), carrots and yogurt ranch dip
Wednesday: Crack chicken casserole, salad
Thursday: Mississippi Chicken in the crockpot, salad, mashed potatoes
Friday: Dinner with Family - We usually eat with family one night out of the week
Saturday: Eat Out
Sunday: Leftovers

Customizable Invitations with Basic Invite

I've long been a fan of paper goods. There's just something about fresh, crisp stationary on high-quality paper that can't be beaten. One of my other side gigs is a portrait and wedding photography business, so I'm no stranger to beautiful wedding invitations. Having invitations that perfectly match your style and needs is essential to a well-planned and beautiful wedding.

You may remember about this time last year, I worked with Basic Invite to bring you beautiful, customizable graduation announcements. With wedding season in full swing, I thought it would be helpful to share all about their gorgeous wedding suites for all my brides out there!

What's to love about Basic Invite?

  1. They offer almost unlimited color options! You can match your invites perfectly to whatever your dream wedding colors might be, and they offer instant previews so you can make sure your cards are EXACTLY as you want them to be. Good luck finding this on any other wedding stationery websites! 
  2. You can order custom sample wedding invitations to see exactly what your invite will look like before you ever place that large order. This means no surprises or mistakes (aka no need to be Bridezilla!). 
  3. They offer over 40 different colors of envelopes - who doesn't love options?! 
  4. You can choose from over 1,000 wedding invitation sets. Whether it be a save-the-date or a wedding program, Basic Invite has you covered.
  5. Use their free address collection service to request your addresses and get free envelope printing. It's that easy! 
  6. Utilize their free personal wedding websites
  7. Need the perfect wedding favor? Basic Invite has over 90 designed wedding coaster looks that can be personalized. Check out these beautiful calla lily coaster wedding favors

I recently received some samples of a variety of different stationery from Basic Invite, and I can attest to the beautiful designs offered in so many colors! I love how high quality their products are, and I would highly recommend checking out Basic Invite for all of your wedding invitation and stationery needs.

Follow Basic Invite: Instagram | Twitter | Facebook | Pinterest

A Thrifter's Guide to Goodwill

Top: Goodwill! 

One of my favorite things to do is go thrift shopping. In fact, I'm not ashamed to admit that I visit my local Goodwill probably at least 3 times a week. I don't remember exactly when I picked up the hobby as I have shopped thrift stores for years and years, but it wasn't until the past year and a half that I started regularly going to collect items for my house. I started a new job in January that's located just a few minutes from a Goodwill close to a wealthier part of town. I go the majority of days on my lunch break to get out of the office and do something that I really enjoy doing. I've gotten a LOT of really nice clothing from that specific Goodwill, and updating my wardrobe with thrifted pieces makes me so happy!

I've learned so much over the past year or so about thrifting. A lot of people aren't opposed to buying things from the thrift shop. They simply just don't have the time and/or patience to dig through the racks, know what brands to look for, and keep track of items they need or want but don't want to spend a bunch of money on! I'm going to break down everything I know to make thrifting easier for you today, and I hope it inspires you to get out and visit your local thrift store. My favorite part is that you never know what you might find! 

A Thrifter's Guide to Goodwill

No. 1 - Don't give up if you have days where you find nothing. I have them all the time, and while they can be a bummer, don't let it stop you. Part of thrifting is the thrill of the hunt - it's all dependent on what people are donating, so good finds are mostly pure luck and consistent searching.

No. 2 - Know your brands.  This comes somewhat naturally for me, because I've always been a brand girl. I love keeping up with the best places to get nice things, but that doesn't mean I have to pay full price for items from my favorite stores. For instance, I know I pretty much love everything that Loft has ever made, so I always keep an eye out for that. I also will frequently take the time while I'm in Goodwill to Google the brand if I'm unfamiliar with it. I recently found a cute cardigan from Goodwill, and I looked up the brand and was so excited to find it was sold at Anthropolgie.

No. 3 - Take a browse through every section! Even if you wear a size Medium, look through every size to see if you find anything you like. There might be a gem in the wrong place, or you might find a top in a different size that fits you perfectly. You don't know if you don't look!

No. 4 - Don't get sucked into the overpriced new Target goods. This is a hard one for me because I love Target - who doesn't?! But my Goodwill overprices their NWT items from Target, and it drives me crazy. You could probably get those items at Target for cheaper, so don't let them fool you. I will say that my Goodwill prices their brand new Target clothing items the same as they do their other clothing, so in that case, I would say it's a good deal! 

No. 5 - Keep a list of items on your phone that you're looking for. I have a running list on my phone of items I've been wanting to find for my house at a thrift store. Whether it be a new vintage pyrex, the perfect basket, or a cute throw blanket, keep a list so you can go into the thrift store focused on the items you want.

No 6. - Try things on! I can't stress how important this is. As with any brand, clothes can look good on the hanger, but at Goodwill, its' easier to see rips, snags, and stains when it's on your body. Just today I found the cutest JCrew army green field jacket that I wanted to buy, but it wasn't until I had it on that I saw some grease stains on the sleeve. My Goodwill has a decent return policy, but avoid the hassle and just try things on.

No. 7. - Do NOT buy thrifted items just because they're cheap. This is a hard one for me that I've had to learn through the process. Just because you find something cute at the thrift store does not mean you need to buy it. My goal is not to accumulate a bunch of clutter that I got for a good price. Only buy meaningful items that will serve you a purpose in your home! Unless it's milk glass. If I see milk glass and I don't have that specific piece, I buy it! :) It's a weak spot.

No. 8 - Shop out of season. You'd be surprised how many adorable winter pieces you'll find at the thrift store in the summer. This is shopping smart. People are naturally going to be looking for summer clothes when it's hot, so there will be more gems in the winter clothes section. Don't forget to look for them and save them for the next season! I have been wanting a fur vest for a while now, and just a few weeks ago I found the cutest fur vest that would retail for at least $50 at my local Goodwill. Such a great find!

No. 9 - Look to Pinterest for inspiration, but try to find it cheaper. I do this all the time. For instance, I recently saw this picture on Pinterest, and I would love to have this little arrangement in my kitchen. I know for sure I can find baskets, jars, and wood utensils at the thrift store. Just today, I picked up two wooden spoons to start my collection to recreate this look. You don't have to shop Williams Sonoma all the time, just to get the look you love on Pinterest!

So there you have it - a regular thrifter's guide to Goodwill. I hope you'll give thrifting a try, and be sure to stay tuned for a thrift hall 

Easy Summer Dresses

We live in a hot and humid climate, so summer dresses are a necessity. They're the perfect way to stay cool but still stylish. I'm all about that in this southern heat. I picked up this little ruffle sleeve daisy t-shirt dress at Old Navy last month for less than $20! Below I've linked a few other options that would be perfect for summer.