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Lunchin' With Modern Market

Yesterday Eddie K and I continued our Sunday brunch tradition by heading out around 11am to grab some grub. We decided to try out a place in the Westlake area that's I've been stalking on Instagram for months now. That's right, we went to Modern Market and tried a little bit of everything from their menu. Below is a little photo synopsis of what we ate PLUS a $50 giftcard GIVEAWAY!








GIVEAWAY

Better Than The Typical Box Cake

Call it "cabin fever" or possibly just a sweet tooth...regardless, this weekend was all about baking in our house. I had some leftover blueberries from last week so I knew I wanted to use them in something else before they spoiled and had to be tossed in the trash. 

So hours before Hurricane Harvey hit, Eddie K and I made the horrible decision to run to H.E.B. for groceries. No, we didn't go because we are "preppers", we went because it happened to be our grocery day. I know, I should've planned ahead but ugh, I didn't. So....off we went. 



To my surprise, it only took us about 30-45 minutes to shop and checkout. We left with a cart full of food, booze, and enough stuff to make this delicious cake you see below. There wasn't a single bottle of water in the whole store but I think we managed to get the "important items." AKA wine and cake mix. Keep reading for the full recipe below.

Trust me when I say it's way easier AND way tastier than it looks!












Better Than The Typical Box Cake
So what if I didn't make the batter from scratch! With a few upgrades, this box cake is the bomb!
Ingredients
  • 1 Box Vanilla Cake Mix
  • 1 Large Package Strawberries
  • 1 Cup Blueberries
  • 1 Tablespoon Vanilla
  • 1/4 Cup Sugar
  • Large Container Cool Whip
  • 2-3 Cups Sliced Almonds
Instructions
Preheat oven to match boxed cake mix instructions. For me, this was 350ยบ. Prepare cake mix according to box. Pour into two separate 9inch round cake pans. Once oven has pre-heated, add the two cake pans and set your timers!Wash fresh fruit and lay on paper towels to drain. Once patted dry, cut strawberries into four slices and throw into a medium size mixing bowl. To the bowl of diced strawberries, add sugar, vanilla, and a handful of sliced almonds. Stir and refrigerate. Once cakes are finished in the oven, remove from pans immediately. Let cool for 30 minutes before cutting them in half making 4 thin layers of cake. Using the layers of cake and the cool whip, assemble accordingly. TIP: add a tiny dollop of the strawberry mixture between layers for added flavor and texture! Once layers are complete, cover the whole cake with the remaining cool whip. Decorate the top with the remaining strawberries and add the blueberries for decoration. Pat the sliced almonds along the sides of the cake. ENJOY!
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 8+ servings

Falling Into Old Habits of Fall....

It's that time of year when all I start worrying about is fall. I want the sweaters, the pumpkin coffees, the blanket scarves, the bonfires, and the cozy nights outside. September 1st is right around the corner so naturally, I'm "falling" into my Tennessee traditions. Only one problem, I live in Texas now and Texas is 120° ALL YEAR ROUND. JK, that's a tad dramatic....a tad. It truly doesn't feel like the kind of fall I'm used to until mid-November so I've learned to dress like a mixture of Tennessee + Texas. 

AKA LAYERS!

This look is one I pulled from both my closet, and from STRUT for a photoshoot. (Shoutout to Laura for the pictures. Isn't she the bomb!?) Separately the pieces fit comfortably in either the summer or fall category. HOWEVER, when paired together they create a look that's perfect for both!


The skirt came as part of a matching set. (SIDENOTE: not actually a skirt. It's a skirt with shorts under it! EVEN BETTER!) It included an off-the-shoulder top in the same print but head to toe florals says one thing to me: SUMMER. So I ditched the matchy top and threw on this simple grey crop. Think "wife-beater" but grey and tummy-baring! 

I draped a black sweater over the crop top for a little extra coverage/weight. This is the one item that instantly takes this outfit from summer to fall! As a self-proclaimed jacket person, I truly think the number one piece of clothing you need in your closet for fall/winter is a simple black cardigan that can be worn 9749864927492 different ways! I've linked a similar style below that retails for less than $20! Check it out!

For the accessories and shoes I kept things simple. Birkenstocks that are literally falling apart because I wear them so much, a gold clutch, my favorite gold railroad tie bracelet from Giles & Brother, a braided string bracelet from a trip to Belize, and my Margo earrings from Lisi Lerch. While the earrings are a bit of a splurge at $78, I look at that as an investment. They transform even the most simple of outfits into something adorable. 

PS...my Birkenstocks pretty much died after this shoot. The soles are centimeters from being completely unglued. NO!!!! RIP!!!! These are my favorite shoes EVER. Will take donations for another pair....kidding....kinda. 








SHOP THIS LOOK

Photography: Inspire Boudoir Austin
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Farmhouse Coffee Bar

We moved into our Beechnut Bungalow a little over three months ago and I am just now getting around to completing a task I had intensions of doing the first few days after we moved. That's right y'all, we FINALLY have a coffee bar! 

We are a coffee drinking family. I love coffee, Eddie loves coffee, even Loretta loves coffee. Hold on, before you yell at me let me notate that we DO NOT, in fact, give our dog coffee. HOWEVER, she sure does try. HA!


A few months back I received a NINJA Coffee Bar as part of a collaboration/sponsorship. (See original post HERE.) This coffee system has change my life. Dramatic? Yes. Somewhat realistic? Yes. Seriously y'all this coffee system is the bomb. It's easy to use, full of special features, and perfect for those of us who like fancy coffees but can't afford Starbucks every single day. 

Anyway, this coffee system has made me want a fully-stocked and usable coffee bar for nearly a year now. Living in an apartment, the space was limited. I kept putting it off until we moved. Well, we moved and I realized I still hadn't fulfilled my want. So, when someone in our neighborhood decided they were going to throw away a pair side tables, I gladly took them off her hands. After slapping on a coat of white matte paint and topping with a few planks of old barn wood, I had the perfect little place to create a coffee bar!

Keep scrolling to see a complete look at this BEFORE and AFTER




If you are new to D+G, you are about to be introduced to my number one obsession when it comes to kitchen/dining decor in our little farmhouse-style home: RAE DUNN. All of the clay pottery/plates/mugs/bowls/etc that you see in this post are from her collection with Magenta. It's sold at your local TJ Maxx, Home Goods, and Marshalls stores...but run, don't walk. These items are hot and are usually scooped up by resellers. (Think Beanie Babies 2017). For more about my personal Rae Dunn collection and for FAQ, visit my previous post HERE.)

For those of you who are ready for fall (RAISING BOTH HANDS OVER HERE!!), there's nothing quite like this handmade sign from my friends at Thread and Wood on ETSY to get you into the mood. From the first second I received this happy mail until now, my heart is full of everything pumpkin, cozy sweaters, and falling leaves. Shop this fall staple below....












Shop Our Coffee Bar


And as promised, here's a complete look at our little BEFORE and AFTER of this farmhouse coffee bar. Follow along using #BeechnutBungalow on Instagram for more updates on our home!
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You're Not Alone...My Struggle With Anxiety

Hi, my name is Morgan and for as long as I can remember, I've shown signs of anxiety. I was the kid who got stomaches every morning before a spelling test in 3rd grade. I was the kid who immediately started crying and having a panic attack if my mom wasn't the first car in line at the end of the day for pick-up. Even from an early age, my anxiety was there. 



Once I got into high school/college I started to see it more clearly and more frequently. I avoided people, large crowds, and tight spaces because I knew my personal breaking points. I started to make up excuses as to why I would choose to go to one place rather than another. I would lie. I would cheat the system. I would do what some viewed "wrong" just because my body told me it felt "right." A serious relationship ended, family drama brewed, I was pushed into a college major I didn't love, and one of my best friends passed away suddenly. I turned to drinking and partying. I found myself around extremely toxic people. I was unhappy constantly and always uneasy in every single situation I was put in. 

This was the peak. I was at the point where I didn't know who I was anymore. I was drowning in depression and my own impulsive thoughts. 

This was, what I thought at the time, would be my demise. 
....but I'm here....and well, so is my anxiety. 



It's not gone and I've come to terms with the idea that it never will be. I've learned to cope in the ways that work best for me: prayer. I stop at least ten times during the day and ask for help and guidance. I know that the Jesus inside me is stronger than any darkness that threatens to overtake me. Don't get me wrong, I still have nights where I don't fall asleep until 5am because I'm thinking about a car ride I have to take tomorrow morning. I have days where coming home from work and cooking dinner seems like running a marathon. That's what anxiety is though. A marathon with no finish line. Managing your anxiety is simply a little water break along the journey of no end. I don't know about y'all, but I reach points where I'm tired of running. My feet hurt and I don't even like exercise. 

While I'm not entirely a "success story" here are a few tips that (seem to be working) for me:
1. Pick a word for the month. I've been doing this for about 6 months now and it really has proven to be a way for me to focus on different parts of my life with ease. This month happens to be FAITHFUL. During my moments of weakness/anxiety filled days I repeat FAITHFUL over and over again. I have a journal where I keep a continuous list of things I think about over the month that relate to the word. Example: Being FAITHFUL to the Lord and getting my booty out of bed at 7am on Sunday's for church. Being FAITHFUL to myself and knowing my boundaries and how to avoid being pushed over the ledge. 
2. Stop and pray. Like I said before, I do this at least ten times per day. If praying isn't something you want to do, take fifteen seconds to breath. During these moments, my brain is free from all anxiety and uncontrollable thoughts. It truly has allowed me to accomplish a lot more than would have been possible in the past. 
3. Don't be afraid to have "off days." You deserve that Saturday nap. You deserve that Sunday afternoon walk. You deserve the chance to order pizza instead of cooking a gourmet meal. Take a day off. It really is one of the best things for your body, soul, and mind. 
4. And if all else fails, grab those who mean the most to you and do whatever you need to do. Go for a run, eat a snowcone with your pup, or cry on your boyfriend's shoulder. You know yourself better than anyone. Listen to what you are being told you need.





At the end of the day, I know I'll never be "normal." This is something I will deal with for the rest of my life on some scale I'm sure. So, using this blog as an appreciation post for my boyfriend/best friend. Thanks for being my rock and the one constant in my life. 

And for those of you running this anxiety marathon, you are not alone....

Styled by: STRUT

See Ramen. Eat Ramen. Repeat.

Y'all asked for it....so here it is!
Eddie K and I were recently gifted with one free week of Blue Apron meals. After sharing these photos on social media, I had a lot of people ask for the recipe. So....enjoy Coconut & Lemongrass Wonton Noodles. 


The recipe is pretty easy to follow but the ingredient list makes this dinner a bit of a challenge. Some of the recipes I feel 110% comfortable recreating and purchasing the ingredients on my own. This one...not so much. I appreciated that all of these ingredients from Blue Apron were provided in the perfectly portioned sizes. It truly helped me not be overwhelmed with this ramen dinner!

Be prepared for a long ingredient-prep process. About 20 minutes of cleaning, cutting, and blending the ingredients before any cooking is even tackled. Overall, you will need to set aside a little over an hour (start to finish) to perfect this dish.






The coconut/lemony flavor was extremely unique and catered specifically to the Thai-style dish. The coconut milk creates a nice milky base for the noodles and stir-fried mushrooms, peppers, ginger, and garlic. Top with crispy noodles, mint, and un-salted peanuts. Serve hot!

For a complete look at the recipe GO HERE!

Oh, and before you ask, yes these bowls are Rae Dunn and were found at our local Marshalls. Aren't they just the cutest! (To see more of my Rae Dunn collection, see my recent blog post HERE)
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