Sugarlaws: Living Sweetly.

confession: my epic holiday fail

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December 19th, 2014 · Print Print

So, last year, I faced the ultimate culinary challenge: a holiday meal for a dozen people. 

And you’d think that would be a huge success, right?  People do this all over the world, and it goes off without a hitch, so this Saveur-endorsed expert will have no trouble, right?  The girl who’s piped eclairs and rendered duck fat and baked cakes from scratch?

Sure, you would think so.

And you would be wrong.

Don’t those potatoes look so great?  Sure, they do.  They look terrific.

But my guests, the ones who were supposed to be eating them for Christmas dinner last year… what did they get?

Oh, sorry.  They got a bunch of burned potatoes.

And, you guys… I feel like I have some story to tell, but there’s no story here.

I was six months pregnant.  I didn’t have a crying baby to look after or a seven-month sleep deficit.

I just tried my best at a holiday dinner, and… well, I burned the potatoes.  In fact, I burned everything.  The details aren’t really important, so let me just say: it was inedible.  I spent all day cooking, and there was literally no edible food on our table.  We didn’t even save the leftovers — and, yes, there were plenty.  They went straight into the trash.

I felt awful.  I felt so badly about ruining Christmas dinner that I could hardly talk about it for months — Chad had to pretend, every time I brought it up, that really, it wasn’t so bad.  Sure, the potatoes were tossed into the garbage, but, even a holiday dinner sometimes goes awry; people understand.  No one starved.

And as our family was leaving (after I’d given them enough dessert and wine to ensure they weren’t still actively hungry, even if they weren’t quite full), my mother in law told me that the first time she’d cooked for her husband’s parents, she’d done the same thing.  She’d spent all day in the kitchen, planned a perfect menu, and then burned the whole thing.

And, you know what?  Someday I hope to tell this story to our son’s wife.  Some holiday, many decades from now, when I see her (and him! I’m raising a man who cooks, if it’s the last thing I do) take on the incredible effort of a holiday meal and see it go wrong, I’ll share this story.  I’ll tell them about that time, a few months before he came into this world, when I bit off more than I could chew and came up just a little bit short.

And I’ll tell them about how we all laughed about it the next year (while eating the store-bought backup dishes I’m ordering this time around). 

So, this year, turn on the Christmas lights.  Open a bottle of wine.  Play some great music and take a moment to focus on the faces of the people around your table.  Because life goes by really fast, and this year’s burned potatoes are next year’s funny story.  And a decade later, they’re a treasured memory of a time you tried and failed; a time you were just human and not superwoman. 

So go ahead.  Burn the heck out of those potatoes. 

→ CommentsTags: food · holiday · life

New Mom Skincare Routine!

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December 19th, 2014 · Print Print

2014-12-05 18.53.03

As you guys know, getting enough sleep is tough when you’re a new mom.  So this week, I’m sharing an easy routine that will help you hit the sheets makeup free and wake up to glowing skin.

Skincare is sometimes overlooked in the bigger word of beauty but it’s the foundation of every good look. For great makeup results, you need to start with radiant, healthy skin, which can be hard when you’re a busy new mom.

Click below to watch the video I made with Simple Skincare to show my New Mom Skincare Routine!

→ CommentsTags: This post was created in connection with my appointment as an Ambassador in the Simple® Skincare Program. · Visit to share your story on sensitive skin. For more tips and deals from Simple, join the Simple VIP community at

Clear Skin After Hot Yoga

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December 17th, 2014 · Print Print

Yoga 4

Hot yoga is a great workout that can help you work up a sweat but unfortunately, sensitive skin can suffer when you’re putting in time in the studio.

Hot yoga (also known as Bikram Yoga) is performed in a studio that is heated to approximately 105 degrees Fahrenheit, which helps to raise your heart rate and tire your muscles as you move through the yoga poses.

Between the heat and humidity, it’s a pretty vigorous workout.  I like to keep Simple Skincare Radiance Cleansing Wipes in my yoga bag, so I can wipe my face and hands as soon as the workout is over.

After you cleanse, make sure to moisturize right away to lock-in hydration.  I love Simple Skincare’s Ultra-Light Gel Moisturizer, which dries quickly and leaves your skin super soft!

Be sure to pack your yoga bag with lots of water, and stop if you feel dizzy or light-headed.  Have fun!

→ CommentsTags: This post was created in connection with my appointment as an Ambassador in the Simple® Skincare Program. · Visit to share your story on sensitive skin. For more tips and deals from Simple, join the Simple VIP community at