Celebrating The Holidays With Family, Friends, and Home Updates!

Good Morning!

I’m so excited because Kyle and I are heading to Savannah this afternoon! His mom is meeting us there for the weekend, and we cannot wait to explore and show her around. No matter how many times we visit, it never gets old. Before I let the recap blogs build-up over the holidays, I wanted to fit one in! Today, I’m sharing everything we did over the holidays. We had a super chill Christmas, and it was even more special because my brother and his girlfriend came to visit. 
I didn’t want a single gift this Christmas. I made pact with my brother and family that we wouldn’t get each other gifts and we would just play games, eat food, and relax instead. Of course, my mom still had to get me a few things, but I felt less stressed, not worrying about shopping or figuring out where I’d put new things. Since we are going to be selling the house soon, less stuff in my house is ideal. Overal, less gifts = less stress!

I did pick up a few things but made sure to shop local. I found a cute gift boutique store in Rock Hill that had the most adorable and unique things! This was about all the Christmas shopping I had to do. 💜 
My brother’s flight from L.A. got delayed to the next morning, so I decided to take my mom to get her first gel manicure. I’ve been obsessed with these lately, and luckily, that’s the gift my mom got me. I’m not mad about it because it’ll save me a ton of money in the long run. I’m that person that always has chipped nails, and I feel like these gel nails have saved me! 😂

I spent the rest of the evening cleaning the house and catching up on Vlogmas.
On Thursday at 5:30 am, I headed to the airport to pick up my brother and his girlfriend. I felt so bad because they took the red-eye from L.A. and had about two hours of sleep.

We sat in the kitchen and talked a bit, made avocado toast, and then they headed upstairs and fell back to sleep. I took the afternoon to catch up on work editing and wedding planning.
On Thursday night, we headed to Barcelona for dinner! This is one of my favorite spots in Charlotte now, thanks to Caitlin (details on dinner here!) We enjoyed so much food and had the best time. I managed to not take one single photo of my food (RARE.)

The next morning, Kyle helped me shoot some photos for a campaign, I spent the day writing, and then we headed out to my parent’s house around 7 pm. This coffee was the only photo I took that day. It’s hard to balance taking pictures for the blog and filming for Vlogmas. We played cornhole in the backyard, ate hibachi, and played fibbage all night. It was a blast!

PS: I don’t enjoy creamer anymore, but Kyle has been drinking coffee with creamer lately. I tried this one, and it’s DELICIOUS! I thought it was worth noting 😃 
The next morning, T.C. Abby and I headed to Grapevine to grab a coffee and walk the Riverwalk. It’s one of my favorite trails, and I haven’t been out there in a while. We did about three miles and then headed back to my place to get ready for a mall day. 
No one likes to shop when they’re hungry. We stopped at Living Kitchen for lunch before heading to the mall.

I was exited to see their nachos on the menu because they were new and tasted delicious! They had corn tortilla chips, black beans, butternut squash queso, pico de gallo, guacamole, sour cashew cream, and jalapeños!
Kyle and I split the fire and brimstone burger (my go-to) on gluten-free bread with a side of broccoli Waldorf and black bean soup.

He ordered the almond-cashew mocha latte, and I had a shot of espresso with kale lemonade. His mocha latte was so good but rich like a dessert. 
Kyle and I spent some time at Arhaus looking at the couches and chairs. We have been couch shopping for the new house, and I think we are going to go with their furniture. They’re hard to find because we have to get to of the same couches, and they have to be 9 ft to fill the space. These would be perfect, and we can choose from so many different colors. 
After the mall, we met up with a few more friends at Fern for dinner! I had to make sure to show off all the vegan spots in Charlotte in hopes that T.C. will want to move here one day 😉 
I ordered the Chimichanga with tofu, sofritas, mixed vegetables, avocado, salsa, and refried beans. It usually comes in a tortilla, but if you have them serve it over tortilla chips, it’s gluten-free. It was delicious! I want to recreate this recipe at home. fern Charlotte, clothes, style, outfit, love, couples,
After dinner, we headed to Pins Mechanical for a fun game-night. This spot was unreal! They have this game called porch pong, and the winners get to keep playing until they lose. Abby and I were on the longest winning streak of the night taking out everyone for an hour and a half. It was one of the most fun nights ever! We made a few too many frat boys upset. 
On Sunday, we took it easy, shopped around a few boutiques, and then headed to my parent’s house to relax and have dinner. I cooked up a salad, Daiya vegan pizza, and Annie’s vegan gluten-free mac and cheese. Now, that’s my kind of dinner 😆
We decided to Celebrate Christmas on Monday since Abby and T.C. were leaving on Christmas eve. I spent the day finishing up my flower project, which I’m so happy how it turned out! I’ll make sure to et photos of it when it’s up on the wall. And a DIY post is coming soon!
When we got to my parent’s house, they had SO MUCH FOOD prepared. My mom made salad, fruit bowl, bruschetta, pepper jelly dip, chips, salsa, crackers, cheese spread, coconut shrimp, brussels sprouts, potatoes, chicken fingers, crab legs, salmon, and more…We were ROLLING out of the kitchen after eating. 
My parent’s set up the most incredible scavenger hunt for us. I filmed it for Vlogmas if you want to check that out! It was pretty funny.

Such a fun night! ♥️ I’m truly blessed. 
Kyle and I had coffee and relaxed on Christmas Eve morning. We were tired from the night before!
When we drove by the house to check it out, we saw that there were a lot of workers putting up the frame. We decided to go pick them up some Krispy Kreme donuts as a thank you for working so hard, especially on the holiday. It’s cool to meet the people that are building the home we will be living in one day. 
We spent Christmas Eve playing yard games, drinking coffee, eating all the leftovers, and watching Christmas movies with my parents. 
On Christmas morning, Kyle and I decided to take a 6-mile hike along the river! It was a beautiful day and the perfect way to spend it. 
55-degrees on Christmas morning? Yes, Please! 
It’s happening!!!

By the way, I decided to start an Instagram to document the house. 😊 You can follow it here! I’ll be sharing all the updates, design ideas, and more!
Standing on my front porch!!
After our hike and house check-up, I headed to Caitlin’s to drop off her gift. She and her mom made me gluten-free and dairy-free frosted sugar cookies for Christmas. I was so so so so excited. I hadn’t had a cookie all season, and I didn’t feel like baking at all. The cookies were so good that Kyle and I scarfed down three of them (each) in the car! I have them in my freezer now, and it’s a cookie battle with Kyle and me.
Christmas night, my dad made homemade soup, and we watched The Family Stone ♥️ 
On Thursday morning, Kyle and I headed out to pick up our marriage license! 😃 It’s getting real! Also, wedding planning is hard lol 😝 
For lunch, I had avocado toast! 😋 I use Udi’s gluten-free bread with avocado, everything but the bagel season, chili flakes, and fried egg.

I know I’m such a Grinch, but I immediately took my Christmas decorations down. I needed to get rid of the clutter and start the 2020 year fresh! I wanted to come home from Savannah and not worry about cleaning.
Kyle and I decided to make bibimbap for dinner. We hadn’t had it in a while, and I was excited to try it out with my air-fried tofu! The dinner ended up being unreal, and I have to recreate this for a blog recipe. My new year’s goal is to get more recipes back on the blog. I’ve been cooking a lot, but not documenting as much. I think I’m just too excited about the new kitchen!

You can expect this recipe in January!! 
I hope you all had a fantastic holiday! ♥️

I hope to hop on here to blog before the new year, but if not, I’ll pop in to reply to all your comments. This has been one incredible year, and I’m so lucky to have all of you here with me to experience it. LOVE YOU GUYS!!

Questions for you!

  1. DId you have a good holiday/
  2. Any goals for the new year?
  3. What are you MOST looking forward to in 2020?


  • Jacklyn

    I NEED that creamer! Where did you find it?

    Reply to Jacklyn
  • Elisa

    I can’t wait for the bibimbap recipe, it looks delicious!

    DId you have a good holiday/
    Yes! I was with family and spent most of my time cuddling with the dogs. My mother and sister made me a faux-fur plaid and I think I broke my dogs’ hearts when I leaved with it ^^

    Any goals for the new year?
    Taking care of myself, having a greener lifestyle, and being more responsible with my money (now that I live in a big city where the rent is high, it’s a necessity!)

    What are you MOST looking forward to in 2020?
    I plan to go hiking on my own this summer. Can’t wait!

    Reply to Elisa
  • Ashton Jury

    Can’t wait for more recipes and see what you guys do in Savannah… are you checking out venues?? Also the bombay looks delicious, though I think i’d have to make it with chicken no way I’m gonna be able to get my husband to eat tofu lol

    Reply to Ashton Jury
  • Sara

    Happy New Year!!

    I love your plaid skirt and black top from your dinner date. Where did you get them??

    My main goal for 2020 is to continue to progress my fitness and weightloss journey.

    Reply to Sara
  • Nichole Walker

    I was down there all last week! My husband’s family lives in York/Rock Hill and we love taking the kids to Baxter and River Walk 🙂 What was the boutique in Rock Hill that you went to? We are hoping to visit more often and I need new places to visit!

    Reply to Nichole Walker
  • Amy

    Christmas was a quiet holiday as I am still recovering from a very bad bronchial infection. I didn’t even get a tree up this year because I was so sick. It rained most of the day but cleared up in the late afternoon so we took Faith for a walk in her new holiday sweater.

    My goal for this year is to maintain my weight loss and to complete a recipe journal for myself and one for my mother. We are both on Weight Watchers and I have developed a love for cooking since beginning this journey. She is loving the recipes I share on my Instagram so I thought it would be a fun and creative project to tackle for both of us. We also will have weekly Facetime dates to meal plan. She lives in Virginia and I’m in Arizona so it’s tough, but this will help keep us connected and keep us both accountable.

    I’m looking forward to finishing my paralegal degree and graduate in May. It took me four long years because I had to take time off for medical reasons. This has been one of the hardest things I have ever done. The classes were challenging and sitting for 3 hours after working all day made it even more difficult. My last semester begins on January 30th and I’m looking forward to wrapping that journey up.

    Reply to Amy
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Amy!

      Sorry to hear you were sick this year 😞 Hope you’re feeling better and get the chance to celebrate the new year!

      Sounds like you have a pretty busy and determined year coming. Wishing you all the best! You’re almost done with your degree! So excited and proud of you! ox

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Laura

    Wait when is the wedding if you already got your marriage license? In my state you have to get married within 60 days of getting your license.

    Reply to Laura
  • Breeanna

    Beautiful photos, as usual! I remember when my husband and I first picked up our marriage license; it was so exciting! Enjoy these moments because it all goes so fast.

    I work for a university and I write all the university news and press releases. Since it’s a Catholic university, there are eight core values (things like excellence, service, hospitality, etc.) and I thought it’d be interesting to write a news piece about faculty, staff, and student goals/resolutions as it pertains to the core values. So, my resolutions/goals are for “service” and “compassion.” I want to work more closely with the local shelter and food pantry and spend more researching, donating to, and spreading awareness about medical causes and mental health.

    I’m hoping to do more traveling in 2020, particularly to a more scenic state like Montana.

    Reply to Breeanna
  • Kelly

    Great post! When is the wedding?!

    Reply to Kelly
  • Whitney

    Thank you for taking us along in everything you do! I truly look forward to each post you do, whether it’s on the blog or Instagram 🙂

    I have to say I had the BEST holiday season. This time last year, we were expecting my sister to die any day from liver failure but fast forward a year and she’s almost back to normal! If that’s not a reason to have a great holiday I don’t know what is.

    2019 was an incredible year for me in so many ways. I accomplished things I had been afraid of and am a better person for it! 2020 will be all about continuing to challenge myself in my aerial arts (pole and lyra) and working on my flexibility so I can hopefully finally get my splits haha! I am most looking forward to the Indian wedding I will be attending in India in a few weeks and my trip to Maui in May.

    Happy New Year to you and your family! It’s been a real fun ride following you the last several years!

    Reply to Whitney
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Thank you, Whitney!

      What an incredible miracle! ❤️ I’m so happy to hear that your sister is doing well. I can’t imagine what that must have been like.

      It sounds like your 2020 is going to be incredible! I hope you come back and share all about it with me!


      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

    Looks like you had an amazing Christmas break – you’re truly blessed, Taralynn! 🙂 I had a great one too, spent it with my loved ones. And it wasn’t too cold in Hong Kong, which was awesome haha! ❤️✨

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

    Reply to Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog
  • Jenna Rall

    I had a great Christmas, except for some killer back pain. Not sure where it came from but I want it gone!

    Goals for the new year, take care of myself/body, declutter a LOT, and spend more time with friends/family.

    In 2020, I’m looking forward to weekend getaways with my best friends! Savannah & Ft. Lauderdale are on my list right now.

    Reply to Jenna Rall

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