We are at less than a week until Christmas people!  When all my Amazon orders arrive I will officially have everyone checked off my list.  This weekend was full of Christmas shopping, Holiday baking, and staying warm during a few chilly nights.  Lets get to all the Weekend Highlights.

Home Cooked Dinner and Bravo

My Friday night included a trip to the grocery store after work, then cooking a nice home cooked meal paired with a class of wine and some good Bravo TV.  I seriously can’t get enough of Vanderpump Rules and Real Housewives.  Thank goodness my husband doesn’t mind watching them as well.  I cooked up our Classic Marinara Sauce and then added it to some beef, carrots, celery, and onion for a homemade bolognese sauce.  I had zucchini noddles and made some whole wheat spaghetti for Tom.  It was delicious and the perfect meal on a chilly night.  Are you more of a soup or comfort food person to warm up?


Shopping, Shopping, Food, and Shopping

That literally sums up our Saturday.  Before all the shopping we woke up to sheets of ice on the sidewalks, roads, and cars.  So rather than going to the gym I was able to do a Hammer & Chisel Beachbody On Demand Workout.  Then enjoyed a protein shake and some coffee as we waited for the temperature to rise so it was safe to head out on the roads.  You know when you shop so much that all your bags are getting in the way that you almost have to take a trip to the car so you can shop some more? Yea that was us on Saturday.  All I have to say is thank goodness for outlet stores.

3-Day Refresh

When we were finished we treated ourselves to burgers and fries from The Burger Joint.  We each got the Triple D, beef, bacon, and a fried egg also with grilled jalapeños, and mine was wrapped in lettuce, YUM!  My only wish was that the egg was a bit more runny.  I first had this combo during my trip to Los Angeles and have been obsessed with a fried egg on burgers ever since.  Just trust me and try it.


When we got home I was able to head to the nail salon before they closed for a mani/pedi to get ready for the holiday trip up north.


The rest of the evening was relaxing and preparing some cookie dough, these chocolate chip cookies, and one batch with mint chocolate chips I shared on Friday’s post, these toffee cookies, but I also added oats and sugar cookie dough.  I’m a big believer of chilling cookie doughs for a few hours up to a day before baking them.  I find the the cookies stay together much better.

Time to Brunch

Sunday morning I woke up and headed over to our community gym to do some treadmill intervals since I hadn’t ran all week.  Then we headed out for a few final Christmas shopping errands in 60n degree weather.  When all finished we decided we deserved a good brunch.  We ate at Virtue Feed & Grain in Old Town Alexandria.  I had the Vegetable Frittata and a side salad and Tom had the Chicken and Waffles with a side of home fries.  It was delicious and I can’t wait to go back for lunch/dinner and a cocktail


By the time we left the restaurant the temperature had probably dropped almost 20 degrees and it was cold and rainy.  So when we got home I lit some candles, warmed up some tea, and started baking up all the cookies from the dough in the fridge.

Then it was cookies for dinner while flipping between holiday movies and football for the rest of the evening.  I’ll share some photos of the cookies this week on Instagram so be sure you’re following!

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Thanks to Meghan and Katie for today’s link ups.  Have a great week!

What was the highlight of your weekend?

Are you finished with your holiday shopping?

What’s the weather like in your area?

21 Comments on Warm Cozy Nights, Holiday To Do’s, and other Weekend Highlights

  1. Gretchen
    December 19, 2016 at 2:54 pm (6 years ago)

    I never used to like soups, but I’ve been making them like crazy this winter! They’re so easy to make and so delicious. Plus, they completely warm me up 🙂 That sauce sounds amazing though.

    • sweetandstrong
      December 19, 2016 at 10:55 pm (6 years ago)

      So true about soups warming you up! I usually am a soup person too, but we were just really craving a good pasta meal Friday.

  2. Sarah @ BucketListTummy
    December 19, 2016 at 3:09 pm (6 years ago)

    Those burgers and your brunch sounded awesome. Friday nights in are my favorite, especially with a cozy homemade marinara sauce. Your husband is a keeper if he agrees to watch those shows with you 🙂

    • sweetandstrong
      December 19, 2016 at 10:59 pm (6 years ago)

      I know right, I love that he doesn’t mind watching all the drama with me. And my college self would be shaking her head at the fact that 99% of my friday nights are now spent on the couch or at a high school sporting event, lol.

  3. Emily
    December 19, 2016 at 3:28 pm (6 years ago)

    Highlight of the weekend was definitely refreshing time yesterday, the opportunity to worship God with other brothers and sisters, and be reminded of the whole reason Christmas is such a glorious season! 🙂

    And all of your meals always make me hungry. That soups looks so yummy; I love soup on a cold winter’s night with crunchy crackers.

    • sweetandstrong
      December 19, 2016 at 11:00 pm (6 years ago)

      So important to remember the true reason we’re celebrating this season!

  4. Meghan@CleanEatsFastFeets
    December 19, 2016 at 3:36 pm (6 years ago)

    I did some shopping too yesterday. I was thrilled when the store owner offered me a mimosa while I browsed. Score!

    Your eats always look and sound so delicious. I personally would devour those home fries and the veggie fritatta while my Hubby would snag your burger.

    Are you coming back to the Cle for Christmas?

    Happy Monday and thanks for linking up.

    • sweetandstrong
      December 19, 2016 at 11:01 pm (6 years ago)

      We will be in town for one night 🙁 Then head to Buffalo to see my husbands family. My family is able to visit a lot more often, so I understand we need to make the trip to NY to really see his. And OMG a mimosa when shopping, that sounds amazing!

  5. Heather @ Polyglot Jot
    December 19, 2016 at 6:45 pm (6 years ago)

    Saturday was a sheet of ice for us in PA too! Snow is one thing but ice is quite another! I was thankful it was a Saturday and not a work morning!
    I finished up my Christmas wrapping this weekend and enjoyed a Christmas dinner gathering with my friends!

    • sweetandstrong
      December 19, 2016 at 11:02 pm (6 years ago)

      I would so much rather have a few inches of snow than ice! We literally both almost completely wiped out walking out to the car even later in the afternoon.

  6. Joyce @ The Hungry Caterpillar
    December 19, 2016 at 9:05 pm (6 years ago)

    Brrr! Sounds like a good weekend for pasta and homemade bolognese–just the thing for cold winter nights. I’m glad you stayed home from the gym rather than try to venture out on icy roads–so dangerous! Also, I’m impressed by your shopping spree. I’m generally exhausted if I go in more than basically one store at a time.

    • sweetandstrong
      December 19, 2016 at 11:03 pm (6 years ago)

      OH Joyce we were so tired by the end and probably had almost 20 pounds of Christmas (and cough personal) items. I’m sticking to online shopping for a bit now, lol

  7. Ellie Pell
    December 20, 2016 at 1:04 am (6 years ago)

    I am a big believer in chilling the dough too. It also makes it easier to scoop out evenly. However, if I want to eat it raw…straight in the mouth, no refrigeration necessary 😉
    I got an arm workout chipping the ice off my windshields and navigating the ice walking to work. It can get pretty windy out there, I think that’s worse than cold temperatures.
    Have a great week!

    • sweetandstrong
      December 22, 2016 at 12:55 pm (6 years ago)

      Yes why is raw cookie dough so good! I actually prefer it over baked cookies, but know it’s not good for you. And oh I am not looking forward to mornings of scraping and chipping away at the windows on the car, it’s definitely a workout!

  8. Jen @ Chase the Red Grape
    December 20, 2016 at 7:25 am (6 years ago)

    Wow what a fun weekend! I hate shopping for myself but love shopping for presents for others, especially at Christmas. I love seeing the mall all lit up with lights.
    I am pretty much finished all my Christmas shopping – then again I only had to buy for David. All my family gifts had to be shipped back to Scotland 2 months ago!

    • sweetandstrong
      December 22, 2016 at 12:55 pm (6 years ago)

      Yes the mall feels like such a magical place at Christmas time!

  9. Cora
    December 20, 2016 at 3:29 pm (6 years ago)

    Well done on plowing through your shopping! I know after a day – heck even one store – of shopping I am WAY due for some wine, good food and movies on the couch. It exhausts me. Also good call on chilling the cookie dough. I forget how good this makes them!

    • sweetandstrong
      December 22, 2016 at 12:56 pm (6 years ago)

      Yes shopping really is so exhausting! And def a believer in chilling the dough for most cookies, makes a huge difference when baking.

  10. Julie @ Running in a Skirt
    December 21, 2016 at 12:34 am (6 years ago)

    What a fun weekend! I spent it doing some touristy things with company. Hope your week is going well too.

    • sweetandstrong
      December 22, 2016 at 12:57 pm (6 years ago)

      I love that visitors give you an excuse to go out and explore your city.

  11. Deli posts
    March 7, 2017 at 12:54 am (6 years ago)

    Mouth watering….Will try this weekend. Thanks for the recipe. May God bless you 🙂