Melissa Kaylene: November 2015

Monday, November 30, 2015

5 Ways to Get Your Face Ready For Holiday Photos

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #HolidayGlow #CollectiveBias
5 Ways to get your face ready for Holiday photos #holidayglow AD @costco

You guys - it’s here. The Holiday season is upon us which means parties, dinners, events, and outings are surrounding us - as well as many opportunities to be featured in everyone’s photos.

It’s hard not to be self-conscious or shy of photos this year - after all, we are all eating a little more and probably partaking a little more than usual. But that doesn’t mean that next time your co-worker grabs your hand and drags you into the photo booth at the company’s holiday party that you should duck and run for cover.

In fact, I think you should do quite the opposite. This year, throw all of your insecurities aside and say ‘cheese’. Have fun, celebrate, and make memories.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Living Locally: Zoolights at The Oregon Zoo

zoolights at the oregon zoo

I hope everyone had an amazing Thanksgiving this last week and had the opportunity to feast with friends, family and make memories. I had a whirlwind of a long weekend which included dinner at my house, a friendsgiving at my friend's home, black Friday shopping, an overnight solo trip to southern Oregon to visit my Mom, and lastly, our annual visit to the Oregon Zoo's Zoolights. 

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Why You Shouldn’t Make Everything From Scratch This Thanksgiving

We hosted our Thanksgiving early this year. It wasn’t big, wasn’t elaborate, but it was memorable.

In years’ past I always got caught up with the hustle and bustle, trying to be Miss perfect and create everything myself - and all from scratch. Sure the food tasted good (most of it anyways!) but I was left tired, worn out, and stressed out.

I wasn’t sure if it was worth it.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Mandarin Orange Cranberry Chutney

Mandarin Orange Cranberry Chutney

I grew up on canned cranberry jelly.

You know, the kind that looks like the shape of the can when you pour it out? Many people love canned cranberries and they’re really not that bad, however, once I made homemade cranberry chutney for the first time I fell in love.

A few years ago I was scrolling through a magazine that I had received in the mail and it had a recipe for homemade cranberry chutney. I was in charge of creating Thanksgiving dinner for our families and I wanted everything to be homemade, so I decided to use the recipe from the magazine. The chutney was a hit and I haven't used canned cranberries since.

Friday, November 20, 2015

New Mom Advice

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I received product and compensation from Mead Johnson Nutrition to create this post written by me. All experiences and opinions expressed in this post are my own and not those of Mead Johnson Nutrition. Consult your pediatrician before making changes to your baby's diet or if you have concerns related to your baby's digestive health. Please see the product label/website for acceptable use and benefits. You can contact Mead Johnson Nutrition with product related questions or comments toll free at 1-800-BABY 123 or through the Contact Us link on Enfamil A.R. or

I think something is in the air around here - I know so many pregnant women right now! It brings back lots of memories, some good, some that I definitely don't miss, but it certainly makes me miss tiny little toes and baby snuggles. Gosh they grow up so fast.

It really makes me think about these past twelve years that I've been a mom.

Sometimes I get so busy living life that I don't take time to reflect. With Anika in the 7th grade, it seems like forever ago when I would stay up countless nights with her, rocking her, burping her, and feeding her. She was definitely my most time consuming baby and actually had frequent spit up issues, which was not only messy, but frustrating for my naive 18 year old self. There was many sleepless nights together just the two of us, and we both did a whole lot of learning.

A Weekend in Hollywood

A couple of months ago I went on a quick adventure down to southern California for a blogging conference. It was my first time in the Los Angeles/Hollywood area and I must say, the flight down there was so much easier than my flight to the Wine Blogger’s Conference this past summer.

The conference was a pretty small one and I was lucky enough too had been given a ticket. I made some new connections which were fabulous, got to have a private screening of a couple shows, and got to (very quickly!) explore the area a bit.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

How to Create a Memorable Date Night

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #BeHealthyForEveryPartOfLife #CollectiveBias
How to Create a Memorable Date Night #BeHealthyForEveryPartOfLife #ad

Date nights are a rare occasion around here. Between schedules, kids, kid’s schedules, and finances, it can be challenging.

But it’s so important.

It had been a few months since my husband and I had been on a date night and it was by far past time for one. Normally I decide where and what we will be going to do, but sometimes it just gets too exhausting and I slack off on it...and then normally date night’s come to a pause.

But a couple of weeks ago something different happened....

Monday, November 16, 2015

An Easy Holiday Wine & Meal Idea

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #HolidayPairings #CollectiveBias The following content is intended for readers who are 21 or older.
Msg 4 21+ An Easy Holiday Wine & Meal Idea #HolidayPariings AD

The holidays are coming! I repeat: the holidays are coming! While we will be eating more than our fair share of ham and turkey over the next month, we will also have to think of other food and drinks to serve to our family and guests when we run out of leftovers...or just want something different to eat.

If you will be finding yourself like me; hosting guests for several days at a time, you have to serve pasta and wine one night for dinner.

Barilla has this pasta called Pronto Pasta that is super easy to prepare and is ready in minutes. It’s actually prepared in one pan - no need for water to boil, and there’s no draining required! The options are limitless as to what you can add in and create for dinner, but I like to make a Sweet Sausage Sundried Tomato Dish with Basil in creamy Mozzarella cheese.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Bacon Wrapped Hickory Smoked BBQ Chicken Legs with Rosemary

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.#LegendaryTailgate #CollectiveBias
Bacon Wrapped Hickory Smoked BBQ Chicken Legs with Thyme #LegedaryTailgate #ad

Football season -you either love it, or your fall somewhere in between. I’m the kind of person who whiles not a die-hard fan, loves getting into the spirit and cheering teams on, especially our local high school and college teams.

My favorite part about football season is that it brings friends and family together, and gives us all an excuse to cheer and celebrate. It also means we can enjoy some delicious tailgating food!

Thursday, November 12, 2015

On The Beach in November

On The Beach in November // @MelissaKaylene

Our family loves going to the beach. We are lucky to live only about an hour’s drive away. While we all love visiting in the summertime on a gorgeous afternoon, some of my favorite trips to the coast were not during the summer months, rather from trips that we have taken in the fall and winter.

5 Holiday Traditions You Need to Create

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #HolidayWithGlade #CollectiveBias
5 Holiday Tradtions you need to create + a recipe for Apple Oat Bars #HolidaywithGlade AD

The holiday season is so magical. This time of the year has always been one of my favorites because all of the activities promote togetherness, and making memories. These are the times for traditions and family, and I’m definitely excited to jump in and have a few magical weeks with mine.

Some of my favorite holiday memories are probably the same as yours: trimming the tree, having a big meal together, and of course decorating holiday cookies, but those aren’t the only fun traditions to keep with your family.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

How To Go Glamping

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #FallGlamping #Glamping #CollectiveBias
How to go glamping + a Simple Smore Mousse Recipe #fallglamping #glamping ad

 Last weekend we had a blast. Emma had her first basketball games, we went and saw The Peanuts Movie, and we went on an overnight glamping trip to the beach.

Yes, I said glamping. If you aren’t familiar with the term, glamping refers to glamour camping, and it’s my favorite kind of camping.

Friday, November 6, 2015

How We Helped Merle Meet Lillard


If you would have told me 48 hours ago that I would be standing 5 feet from NBA star Damian Lillard on the court before the Portland Trail Blazers game I would have thought you were crazy, but that’s just what happened last night at the Moda Center as I photographed him meeting one of the sweetest women I know, Merle.

Merle lives at the company that I work for a few times a month and I’ve known her for several years now. Ever since we met I felt a connection, though I’m sure most people do to Merle. She is the kind of person who is full of knowledge and genuinely cares for you. Every time I come in to work she asks me how my family is, and what sports my kids are doing now - and she always gives me updates on her family and what all of her children and grandchildren are doing.

Merle has told me that some of her favorite years were the years she spent traveling with her family, and she was one of the people who really inspired me to make memories daily with my own family.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Garlic Chicken, Rice & Vegetables

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Garlic Chicken, Rice and Vegetables recipe #sauteready AD

I’m always on the hunt for ways to make mealtimes easier and I talk about it quite frequently on here. As much as I love to cook, it would be ridiculous to always make everything from scratch without a little help.