What Would Holley Wear: Grateful, Thankful, Blessed

This year, John and I are celebrating Thanksgiving twice!  First we celebrated in Kansas City with Andy and Melissa, and our four grandchildren (ages 1 to 11).  And next week, we head to New York to celebrate with Chris and our New Jersey cousins. Spending time with family….it doesn’t get any better than that!  

Not only did we celebrate Thanksgiving early in Kansas but we also celebrated Eli’s 1st birthday and Pop’s 65th birthday!  When we are with our grandchildren, comfort is more on my radar than style.  My KC Thanksgiving/Birthday weekend style consisted of jeans, sweaters, and flat boots.  From playing on the floor with a 1 and 3 year old to playing cards with a 9 and 11 year old….I make sure my style is always “grandmother friendly”!  By the way…guess who loved their birthday cake the most?

I am loving all the striped sweaters, ponchos, and wraps in stores and on our Pinterest board.  For our Kansas Thanksgiving dinner, I dressed up my “comfy grandmother” look a bit by wearing gray jeans with a creamy white turtleneck complemented with a striped poncho.  With my snakeskin boots from Zara, I was ready for “turkey-time!” Be sure to take a look at all of the fall/winter striped sweaters and wraps on our Pinterest board!

 

Fall floral dresses and skirts are another great look for a Thanksgiving dinner with family and friends.  We are loving a floral dress from Nordstrom’s Anniversary Sale on our Pinterest board. With a pair of black suede booties, it makes for the perfect fall/winter ensemble.  Wanting to add a pop to your holiday style? Then think about wearing a statement blouse or sweater with a floral skirt and boots!

Next week we are heading to New York to celebrate Thanksgiving with our son, Chris, and our New Jersey cousins.  We have dinner reservations at Jasmine’s in mid-town. Yep….we are having Chinese for our New York Thanksgiving dinner!  Since I’m loving this season’s suede and leather skirts, I plan to wear a brown faux suede midi skirt with a grey turtleneck sweater and my black Eileen Fisher moto jacket.  And one more thing….I’m pretty sure my outfit will pair perfectly with Peking duck and sparkling wine!

For the remainder of our New York trip, we will be busy sightseeing and doing a lot of city walking.  The key wardrobe factor here will be flat knee-high boots. Plus they will go great with everything I’m taking…my suede skirt, jeans, and a pair of faux leather pants.  Our Pinterest board features so many cool city looks to copy from boots to leather pants and skirts. I’m especially loving a pair of leather pants topped with a wool rust coat layered over a white sweater and worn with flat booties!  How New York-ish does that sound?

After celebrating my favorite holiday twice this year with family….I’m reminded how “grateful … thankful … and blessed” I am.  With that, I would like to share a thanksgiving toast with each of you….“may your lives be filled with both thanks and giving!”

Holley Williams is a personal stylist specializing in closet inventory, seasonal shopping, closet organization and wardrobe consultation.  Contact Holley at [email protected]  Be sure to check out Holley’s updated Pinterest board here.

Monday Motivation: Eleven Things to do on Sunday and Shipt Coupon Code

One of my favorite things, as I approach the weekend, is knowing I am going to have free time to relax and make my own schedule.  Sunday, in particular, is a day I want to make sure is free of commitment so I can mentally prepare for the work week ahead.  When I came across this post for “Eleven things to do on a Sunday to prepare for a better week” I knew I wanted to share it with you in my mission to help make Monday the best day of the week — not your least favorite.

Here’s a recap (for the full article visit here and you can also find it on my Pinterest board).

  1.  Create a to-do list writing down everything you need to get done for the week.
  2. Once you know what you need to do prioritize your to-do list so you accomplish what’s most important first.  The rest is easy which will give you confidence to complete the remainder of the list.
  3. Go grocery shopping for the week.  Or, in my case, I use Shipt grocery delivery.  I make my list at Target (depending on your area you have several grocers to choose from), send it to Shipt and they do the shopping, delivery and drop off on my kitchen counter or porch.  Here’s a coupon code to use for $50 off your annual delivery fee (with unlimited deliveries as long as they are $35).  I haven’t been grocery shopping in over two months and it’s been a huge time saver.  You can also use their service to have groceries delivered to a friend or college student.
  4. Spend time decluttering.  I go through unopened mail, tidy up the house, take out the trash, stack up books and magazines from my weekend reading.
  5. Do meal prep.  This is when I place my Shipt delivery order for the week.  I have my groceries delivered on Monday after I get home from work and I have everything I need for meals for the week.
  6. Do laundry.   No one wants to run out of underwear mid-week and the weekend is a perfect time to look through your closet to determine what you will be wearing based on what you have put on your to-do list.  Have a funeral to attend on Tuesday, make sure your dress is clean and pressed.  This is also when I put on a new set of clean sheets for the week ahead.
  7. Clean out your email inbox.  I delete, delete and delete all those emails I don’t need or have already read.  Also sort into folders to save important emails for later reference.
  8. Get outside.  Right now it is cool in my area and I have really been enjoying sitting on the patio, sipping coffee and reading books.  Hazel loves to go for walks with me on the weekends because we aren’t rushed to get home.
  9. Take a look at your budget.  Do your mobile banking, check balances and make deposits for the week.
  10. Get enough sleep.  Weekends are perfect for napping — my favorite hobby.  It’s not indulgent to take naps.  There’s a whole lot of science out there to support the important of getting rest.  I think of a nap equal to how we re-charge our devices:  It’s necessary to operate.
  11. Enjoy the time off.  Monday will be here before you know it.

What’s your favorite way to spend a weekend?  Have a great week ahead!

Mrs. Twist Says This Podcast: Episode Four

Episode four of the podcast is live and available here or on most apps where podcasts are found (iTunes, Google Play, Spotify, Podcast Addict, etc…).

This week on the podcast I am sharing memories of holidays spent at our family farm, five great questions to ask if you conduct job interviews, how I started a successful bookclub through BookMovement, a fabulous cocktail recipe and the value of focusing less on things being perfect for Thanksgiving.

Here’s the link to the podcast Safe for Work (look for August 13 episode).

Want to join our Mrs. Twist Reads This bookclub — you can sign up here and go here to see what we are reading this month.

The Apple Cider Bourbon cocktail is from Style me Pretty here .

You can also read here how I am outsourcing my Thanksgiving food this year to spend more time doing nothing.

I love to hear your comments on the content — and feedback on what you’d like to hear more of.  And subscribing to my podcast on your preferred channel helps me to gain more listeners.

Here’s to seeking joy in everyday!  Thanks for listening.

Mrs. Twist Reads This Bookclub: Bitter Orange

This month Mrs. Twist Reads This bookclub is reading Bitter Orange by Claire Fuller.

From the attic of Lyntons, a dilapidated English country mansion, Frances Jellico sees them―Cara first: dark and beautiful, then Peter: striking and serious. The couple is spending the summer of 1969 in the rooms below hers while Frances is researching the architecture in the surrounding gardens. But she’s distracted. Beneath a floorboard in her bathroom, she finds a peephole that gives her access to her neighbors’ private lives.

To Frances’ surprise, Cara and Peter are keen to get to know her. It is the first occasion she has had anybody to call a friend, and before long they are spending every day together: eating lavish dinners, drinking bottle after bottle of wine, and smoking cigarettes until the ash piles up on the crumbling furniture. Frances is dazzled.

But as the hot summer rolls lazily on, it becomes clear that not everything is right between Cara and Peter. The stories that Cara tells don’t quite add up, and as Frances becomes increasingly entangled in the lives of the glamorous, hedonistic couple, the boundaries between truth and lies, right and wrong, begin to blur. Amid the decadence, a small crime brings on a bigger one: a crime so terrible that it will brand their lives forever.

Due to the Thanksgiving holiday, we are meeting Thursday, December 6 at 7 p.m. for appetizers, sips and discussion.  If you are looking to join a bookclub, I promise you will love our group.  I started this bookclub in May 2017 because I wanted to spend more time reading and less time using technology.  We’ve read 20 books and have 80 members, many who live around the country and just want to be a part of a community of women who read!  It’s thrilling to see this for sure.  The best part is that many of the authors we read have enthusiastically joined us via FaceTime or in person to chat about their books.

So, how do you join us?  Go here to Book Movement and set up a free account.  It gives you members-only access to our book club page to see the latest book we are reading, receive email invitations to upcoming meetings and create your own personal queue of books you want to read on your own.  Maybe you can finish 2018 reading Bitter Orange with us!

What Would Holley Wear: Fall Crops and Culottes

This week we are sharing our favorite ways to wear fall/winter culottes. Once a spring and summer look, culottes have made a big come back and now work year-round.  

Want to give your culottes a “too cool for school” vibe?  Then think about wearing them with a leather or denim jacket.  Two fab Pinterest board looks show camel culottes paired with a leather jacket…one dressed-up with heels and one worn casual with sneakers.  An ultra-trendy style shows a pair of camel culottes with a white turtleneck sweater topped with a denim jacket. And for an extra pop, they added snakeskin booties!   How cool is that?

I have to admit…I’m loving all the fall leather culottes.  For a sophisticated seasonal look, you can’t miss with layers of brown leather…jacket, culottes, and booties.  Another classic look on our Pinterest board shows a pair of black leather culottes topped with a camel sweater and coat.  And my favorite board pick is definitely a striped sweater and black leather culottes.

Doing a double take?  Then take a look at a cute pair of khaki culottes shown two ways….one with a black sweater and one with a white sweater.  Basically, they swapped out the tops, shoes, and handbags….an easy switch-a-roo! There are so many ways to wear black culottes!   One Pinterest board feature shows black culottes with an adorable cropped sweater with elbow patches. Another classy look matches black culottes with a gray turtleneck and knee-high boots.

Looking for the perfect fall transition style?  Then look no further because the answer is denim culottes.  Show me a pair of frayed denim culottes, and I’ll show you one of this season’s “it” trends!  For a casual weekend look, wear a cable sweater with your denim culottes. When the weather starts turning a bit cooler, adding a vest, sweater, and boots will do the trick.  To up your “casual Friday” style, think about wearing a blazer or trench coat with your denim culottes…a bonus for sure!

What’s your favorite fall color? One of my fall favorites is olive green, and I’m loving a Pinterest post featuring olive green culottes, printed t-shirt, leather jacket, and sneakers.  To give a pair of green culottes a dressed-up vibe, top off your outfit with a leopard print coat! Another way to incorporate this fall color into your wardrobe is with an olive green vest.  A long vest worn with white cropped jeans and an animal print clutch is a great intro to fall. And remember….white after Labor Day is the norm these days!

Did you know that culottes make for a great party look?  One way to accomplish this is by wearing them with a blouse or sweater with statement sleeves.  Style star, Olivia Palermo, never misses a fashion beat. Her black culottes matched with a white statement blouse tell me one thing….the beat goes on!  And fashion maven, Jenna Lyons, marches to the beat of her own drum as well. She creatively styles white wrap culottes two ways….one with a sheer pearl embellished top and another with a white off-the-shoulder top.  Drum roll please!

From Labor Day throughout the winter season, culottes are now considered a fall/winter fashion staple.  And I don’t know about you, but I just love how an old classic has become a new trend!

Holley Williams is a personal stylist specializing in closet inventory, seasonal shopping, closet organization and wardrobe consultation.  Contact Holley at [email protected]  Be sure to check out Holley’s updated Pinterest board here.

Newsy Tuesday: These three ladies are making my Thanksgiving

I’m planning my Thanksgiving menu and since I am working more hours this year, I know that I won’t have as much time to cook.  So big news — I’ve hired out my sides and pies!  This is big because not only do I love to cook, but I love my recipes.  However, I’d rather trade the time and effort of cramming in the cooking for a leisure, relaxed holiday.  There. I said it.  And, I am happy.

However, Mr. Bee will still cook his turkey. And the recipe we love to use comes from my sweet friend and super talented hair stylist Mandy Hancock (who is a #bossbabe and owns a super chic salon called Prominence Parlor).

She shared her secret with me a few seasons ago and we never looked back on our turkey prep.  It’s moist, flavorful and delish.  Here’s her recipe:

Mandy’s Holiday Cheer Slow Roasted Turkey recipe!! 🤤

Rub some olive oil all over the bird, season generously with garlic salt and creole seasoning. Garlic cloves and Cheer Beer go in the cavity (fill til it starts to barely spill out). Roast it, breast up, at 500* for 20 min uncovered. After 20 min take out, turn bird breast down then cover tightly with foil and slow roast at 200* for 45 min per pound!!! Don’t expect to be able to slice it though, it will literally be falling off the bone!! Use the juices as brown gravy! Your house will smell soooo good all night and morning!!! I always take all the leftover juices, neck, giblets and carcass and boil it down to make make an insane broth too. OMG sooo good!

*do the math on how long your bird needs to cook first! Big birds can take a long time! I always do mine overnight so it’s perfect by Thanksgiving lunch at noon 🧡

**Shiner Holiday Cheer Beer packaging has changed from this photo but the beer itself is the same!

Now for the sides, my niece is making the mashed potatoes and macaroni and cheese.  Miss Bee put her foot down that she’s making Mother’s sweet potato delight, plus Dorcas Reilly’s famous green bean casserole.  However, I am having my favorite place, Hurley House, make their cornbread dressing and cranberry relish.  Oh, and I snagged a pan of her cinnamon rolls to eat while I watch the Macy’s Parade.  Call 817.349.8934 to place your order.

On to the pies, I have ordered from my favorite pie gal, Lindsey Lawing of Sweet Lucy’s Pies.  On my list are Pumpkin, Pecan, Chocolate Chess and Buttermilk.  Dear Lordy, her pies are so good and frankly better than mine.  Connect with her through Facebook to place your order.

I am so excited to delegate this out.  It will be the first Thanksgiving Miss Bee is home from college and I want to spend as much time as possible hanging out with her.  I’ll still allow myself the chance to set a stunning table, wash my crystal and shine the silver, but the time someone else is taking to make my meal perfection is a gift I plan to savor.

What’s something you can delegate this holiday?

Hot Golden Fall Punch

Episode three of the podcast is up ready for a listen here.  It’s can be found on most stations that host podcasts (iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, Spotify, FM player and Soundcloud).  This week I shared the story of how I got my name, tips on how to support a grieving friend, how to stock a dish closet, 12 habits of happy women and a delicious recipe for Hot Golden Fall Punch.

I found this recipe years ago, 30 to be exact, from the Junior League of Austin cookbook.  I make it every fall when I host parties.  A fun thing to try is setting up this hot punch in a percolator on your front porch with a tray of mugs.  When guests arrive they will smell the spices from their cars and instantly enter your home with mug full of happiness!

Hot Golden Fall Punch

4 cups of unsweetened pineapple juice

1 12 oz can of apricot nectar

4 cups of apple cider

1 cup of orange juice

2 cinnamon sticks

1/4 tsp salt

1 tsp whole cloves

Pour juices into electric percolator*.  Place remaining ingredients in basket and perk.  Serve steaming hot. Serves 18-20.

*Without a percolator, pour juices in a large pot.  Simmer 10 minutes and remove spices before serving.

What Would Holley Wear: Cool and Classic Eileen Fisher

When Sari Moore, Store Leader of Eileen Fisher at Northpark Center invited me to give an in-house style presentation to their clients, I was beyond elated!  The best way to describe Eileen Fisher’s style is cool & classic! Each piece is designed to be worn casually or dressed up. Genius….right?

Since I’m a jeans kind of gal, one of my goals was to show their clients how to incorporate jeans with the flowy style Eileen Fisher is known for.  The day of the event, I wore an EF funnel neck top with a pair of her black skinny jeans and demonstrated how to style it with different wraps and jackets.  To complete my outfit, I added a pair of EF black suede booties…classic perfection!

 

To add a little flair, Sari showed the ladies how to give the outfit a pop with one of their fabulous scarves.  She also brought in beautiful handcrafted jewelry from Akola, located in Snider Plaza. Be sure to take a look at all the fun party pictures on our Pinterest board and find out more about Akola jewelry at akolaproject.org

 

The thing I love most about Eileen Fisher is “the system”….eight simple shapes.  An entire wardrobe can be built around “the system,” from long and short shells, tank tops and dresses, to their four awesome pant options. It’s the fit that makes their simple shapes work effortlessly season after season. My favorite EF pant is their slim pant…a streamlined style that looks great with long layers.  And to give it a more relaxed fit, you can order one size up! Hmmm….I don’t know about you, but that makes me want to do a happy dance!

Their October and November pieces are all about bold color combinations grounded with a neutral.  Megan Markle brought navy back, and Eileen Fisher brought “midnight” back…her luxe version of navy that perfectly balances their bold fall colors.  I’m major crushing on their “red lory” with orangey undertones, and their “pine” is the most luxurious version of green I’ve ever seen. Built around a neutral, their pieces are so easy to color block.  And the good news….the Northpark team members can easily assist you with the perfect fit and color combo! A shopping bonus, indeed!

Accessories always complete an outfit….right?  From scarves to handbags, Eileen Fisher gives her clients easy coordinated options.  One of my favorites is a navy and grey plaid scarf modeled by the gorgeous Gigi, Northpark team member.  Don’t you just love how it perfectly complements their navy tank dress? Eileen’s grey felt tote is the ideal everyday bag and will give your travel style a touch of sophistication….definitely my pick for a weekend jaunt to New York!  

Eileen Fisher’s contemporary styles are not only classic but super comfy and hip!  Wow…it looks like I just made a new best friend! By the way….her name is Eileen! How cool is that?

Holley Williams is a personal stylist specializing in closet inventory, seasonal shopping, closet organization and wardrobe consultation.

Contact Holley at [email protected]  Be sure to check out Holley’s updated Pinterest board here.

Motivation Monday: Flowers on your desk, a mantra and a blanket of humanity

I found this Monday checklist from Business Insider. You can find the full description and suggestions for each task on their site.

I was intrigued by number 13 — “blanket of humanity” on your emails.

“It’s tempting to power through all your emails in the most efficient way on Monday mornings. But before you hit send, read them over to ensure that they’re friendly and clear. “Put yourself in the recipient’s shoes. It’s relatively easy to appear curt when you’re in a hurry, along with the impersonal nature of emails and texts. You want to mitigate false starts and misinterpretations,” Taylor says. One way to do this: Start the email by saying “Hi” and “I hope you had a great weekend.”

Want to know what successful people do on Sunday nights?  They have a post on that, too here.

Another idea I like to plan for Monday is to make time to leave a little early for work and stop at the grocery for a bouquet of flowers to enjoy on my desk for the week.Lastly, everyone needs a mantra.  Years ago, we made the life changing decision to be caregivers for my parents when they came to live with us.  During that time I met with a therapist to help me work through the transition of adding this new role to my already busy life as a wife, mother and employee.  One of the best take-aways she suggested for me to try at night before I go to bed was to say to myself “life won’t always be like this.”  It was a positive message for me to imprint in my brain so that it would hear a message of hope and relief.  We tell ourselves everyday negative messaging and as a result our brain hears nothing else and we start to believe we aren’t good enough, pretty enough, smart enough… This Monday morning message from Empowering Women Now is the perfect mantra.  Print it off and put it in a prominent place.

Make your Monday the best day of the week!

Friyay Fit: Home with a Twist Featured in Voyage Dallas

I began my first blog, Buzz In Around the Hive, about six years ago as a way to journal my experience as a caregiver to my parents. Sprinkled in between stories of the joys and challenges of caring for aging parents, I shared recipes, ideas for home decor and entertaining, the milestones of being Miss Bee’s mother and a few stories including, Mr. Bee, my husband.

My mother, Earnie, was a big inspiration for my blog material. With her permission, I would share comical things she said or did. She always laughed and found the funny in most everything, even heartache. When Mother died very suddenly in 2013 from a brain aneurysm, my world stopped turning. I missed her daily presence in my home where we lived together as a family for six wonderful years. She was my “zip.” It took me a LONG time to find any reason to write. I had no motivation. My muse was gone. About two years later, I slowly found the desire to write. But, even then, it didn’t seem like anything I was sharing was interesting.

When I was with my three best friends on a getaway, I shared all these feelings I had and, with their help, I realized that my blog had revolved around a life I didn’t have anymore. I had moved on to the next chapter of my life – a life yet to be lived with infinite opportunities to redefine who Melissa is and will be next. However, it is really important to me that I stay close to those ties I had with Mother and the inspiration she gave me throughout her lifetime.

Hence, Home with a Twist. A daughter’s twist on her mother’s traditions. I will still share the same ideas with you on cooking, home keeping, entertaining, my spiritual growth and whatever else I may find interesting. It’s my twist in the tale.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
As fun as social media can be, it can also be a burden to always feel like you are not good enough. I love the quote by Steven Furtick, “The reason we struggle with insecurity is because we compare our behind the scenes with everyone else’s highlight reel.” On the days when I share quick, personal stories about me and my life, they seem to get more “likes” than the beautifully staged photos of something I’ve spent a lot of time on. People want authentic.

We’d love to hear more about Home with a Twist.
I have had such a wonderful professional career as an event producer for almost 20 years. Being able to blend my gifts of hospitality and creativity with my “day job” has been very fulfilling. But, I do look forward to retirement someday when I can blog full time.

Which women have inspired you in your life?
My mother is my inspiration. Growing up pulling on my mother’s apron strings, I learned to prepare fabulous food, entertain guests with style and design a traditional home with a retro twist. She taught me to always be kind, gracious and practice empathy. My sister is also important to me. She was fifteen when I was born, so she has always been more of a Mother figure in my life. She taught me to tie my shoes, count and do multiplication tables. She is very creative and has great personal style.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Rooted In Love Photography and SRC Photography