Best Purchases of 2017

Original Post: Here | Photography by: Madison Katlin

As I sit at my desk typing this and breathing in all the essential oils [I’ve got a cold or I’m allergic to the holidays ending….] I’m trying to focus on products I may not have talked about too much. There’s lots of obvious best buys of the year, like our home. 😉 But I wanted to dive into some pieces that I may not extensively review on the blog. A secret list of favorite purchases if you will?!


  • Gelous Nail Polish: Y’all know from this post, that in 2017 I started to do some DIY manicures. Gelous polish is the trick to making them work and I can’t live without it now.
  • Charlotte Tilbury Foundation: I’m going to do a best of beauty post this month, so I don’t want to give away too many favorites in this post. However, this is the foundation I’ve worn for a solid 5-ish months now and I’ll 100% repurchase. I’m shade #3 and it gives you airbrushed skin without being caked on. It’s honestly a very buildable formula and starts with medium coverage.
  • Sisley Primer: I was able to test this primer last year and it was my favorite. One reason I rarely like makeup primers is because it oxidizes my makeup/makes me look way too dry. If you have normal to dry skin, this stuff makes you glow like a girl off her island honeymoon. It gives you the glow of a spray tan without the stench and color. Now it is a luxury beauty item, but a little goes a long ways. It’s one of those products where you could ask for it for your birthday or use gift cards to treat yourself. I had to throw in a splurge product somewhere or this wouldn’t be Chronicles of Frivolity, right?!



  • My favorite shows I binged-watched were definitely Suits & This Is Us. Suits is just one of those typical shows I normally fall for but This Is Us is something I never would have pegged myself for watching. In fact, when I saw the previews I didn’t really understand it so I thought, “Why do people cry over this week after week?” It wasn’t until a friend from church said we had to watch it so I did. YOU HAVE TO WATCH IT NOW. I’ll get off my This Is Us soap box because I know America has one, but I watched 2 seasons in 2 days if that tells you anything…
  • These were my favorite pajamas of the year. I get a lot of questions about which pajamas I’m always [no seriously, I wear them all day] wearing on Insta Stories and Snapchat. These are it!
  • I love to skim through organizational books, but let’s be honest I’m not their target market. Or am I? I’m obsessed with organization, maybe to a fault. I’ve got a husband and a baby, so nothing will ever be perfectly organized and in my quest to find our “happy medium” I read a million books on it. I will say, this book by Emily Ley has been my favorite. A Simplified Life doesn’t just talk about why you don’t need clutter. It talks about easy meal planning and just taking clutter out of your life. If you’re a mom, I also recommend the Podcast, “Risen Motherhood.”  Listen to their episode from December 6th on finding freedom as a working mother. I do want to preface by saying this is a religious podcast, but even if you aren’t religious there are so many good things to take away from it. It’s definitely not “preachy” by any means. It talks about how our callings look different than our neighbor’s family. It touches on how in other countries no one really worries about if someone is a working mom or a stay-at-home mom or a work-from-home mom. They just know we all have to feed our family somehow. All of that to say, in America there is a lot more judgement and guilt. That puts clutter in your life and mind which gets put on your children. The guest on this podcast was saying that because she works, she really can’t have her kids in a million after-school activities. She of course worries, “Am I going to ruin my kids?” And then she talks about how ridiculous that is. I really can’t give this episode justice with description, but just try it! Even working from home, I worry if I do “enough” as a mother and wife because I have to spend a lot more time on work than I would if I wasn’t working. But that’s an outrageous notion. I didn’t miss out on seeing a working mom when my mom was a stay-at-home mom and Maxi isn’t missing out on anything either. If anything, this podcast talks about how we should see the benefits. Our kids follow examples and I think it’s incredible my child gets to see [if even for a brief period of time] her mother balance two worlds at home. If you stay-at-home, I think it’s wonderful your child gets to see you be devoted to their home and their health and happiness 24/7. If you work out of the home, it’s a huge blessing your child gets to see you accomplish goals both in and out of the home. I’m rambling, but this totally changed my perspective and goes hand-in-hand with the book I’m reading!


  • Mary’s Crackers: I love these crackers for eating hummus or guacamole! I also try to make fresh salsa when I can and use these crackers instead of tortilla chips. They fill me up a lot faster so I’m not mindlessly snacking on salty chips.
  • GG Crackers: Okay, here me out on these crackers. If you eat them plain they taste like sawdust. Fiber is so important in our diets and women rarely get the amount they need. Fiber keeps you full and honestly who has a ton of time to snack all day?! I use these as a vehicle for things I eat like avocado, hummus, salsa, black bean dip, etc. The Skinny Confidential has a lot of recipes to use them like these pizzas. Now I’m not advocating using these for dieting, but they do help you snack a lot less. I LOVE chips and when I buy these I don’t ever eat chips, so that’s a big healthy swap.
  • Everything Bagel Seasoning: I use this for everything from eggs to avocado toast. Paul puts it on macaroni and cheese…you get where I’m going with this. If you don’t have a ton of room for spices you basically just need this, salt and pepper and you’re good. 😉


  • Desk: This is the desk I went with! When picking my desk and our nightstands, I wanted to go with an option that wouldn’t show imperfections. I had a lot of lacquered furniture in our last home, but lacquered furniture is kind of liked a manicure. Looks good in the beginning but one wrong move and you’ve got a chip in a day. I love that this desk can be made to look feminine or french country depending on how I redecorate in the future. Come on, y’all know me! I always swap things around!
  • Chairs: I hadn’t ever had true custom furniture until this home. A few of y’all e-mailed me about Kisabeth Furniture and that is how our living room chairs came to be! I’m going to do an entire blog post on the process because I got a lot of e-mails from readers asking what to look for in fabrics, etc. when choosing furniture for longevity. These are so incredibly comfortable and everyone wants to sit in them when they come over.
  • Drapery Hardware: This is probably an odd favorite to include but Paul and I can’t stand hanging drapes. I mean we avoid it at all costs. That’s why I originally hired a decorator, we don’t know what we are doing when picking drapery hardware, etc. In our last home we purchased some pricier hardware options and they were a nightmare to install. Then in this home I ordered some lucite hardware off etsy and I’m still nauseous from the cost. I ordered this hardware off Amazon for one of the guest bedrooms because it’s not like it would be seen a lot. This was incredibly easy to install and looks great. I honestly think we should just get this for the rest of the home because it’s a great price and caused no stress.


  • Rocket Skinny Jeans: I really don’t have that many pairs of denim. You probably can see the same three pairs recycled on the blog. I decided that it was time to get a few more pairs and I got these. I will say, because I’m 5’3″ denim rarely works for me. It’s pricy enough that I don’t want to pay to tailor them. I end up returning 80% of denim I purchase because they are too long. If you’re petite, these are wonderful! They fit perfectly and hit at the right spot on the ankle.
  • Designer Dupe Sunglasses: Years ago I splurged on pair of Celine sunglasses. I may be wrong, but I think it was my first splurge after I graduated college. Where are they? Exactly. I lose sunglasses all the time. I always look at the Celine sunglasses at the mall but just don’t want to spend that much. These are $9 on Amazon and look like the real deal. They are really sturdy for being under $10 and I keep a pair in my car and a pair in my diaper bag so I’m not without them.
  • Tassel Earrings: 2017 was the year of the massive earrings for me. 😉 I actually met this designer while speaking on a panel about blogging. This brand is extremely lightweight and I wear them with messy ponytails and buns weekly. You probably have seen that I have nearly every color from my Insta Stories and Snapchats. These make a great birthday gift for your bff!

What Do I Want to Try Next Year?

  • Glossier: I haven’t tried anything by Glossier yet and I feel very behind. I went to our annual Christmas dinner last weekend with my best friends from elementary school [we all stayed best friends and were in each other’s weddings!] and they all talked about Glossier products. I think I’m more interested in the makeup than the skincare just because I really like my routine, or should I try it out? I really want to try Cloud Paint.
  • Gilmore Girls: I’m basically not an American because I can’t ever get into Gilmore Girls or Parenthood. But everyone says to keep trying with Gilmore Girls so this year I want to. How long do I need to suck it up? Through the first season?
  • White Shoes: White shoes have had their moment the past few seasons and I really want to try them for summer! I love these slides and these sandals.

What were your favorite buys of the year?!

Leave a Note

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  1. Chelsea wrote:

    I could not get into Gilmore Girls at all. I too felt un-American when all my friends loved it and I did not. Once i got past the first season though, I started to get hooked. Parenthood, on the other hand, is hands down my favorite show of all time!! Give it another try!

    Published 03 Jan 18Reply
  2. Libby wrote:

    I’m obsessed with Everything Bagel seasoning too! It’s so good on almost everything!

    Libby |

    Published 03 Jan 18Reply
  3. Ellen Hoffman wrote:

    OMG YES TO GILMORE GIRLS (& Parenthood). Stick with it and I swear it’s hard not to love

    Published 03 Jan 18Reply
  4. Yolanda wrote:

    I am very curious about what you have heard about Glossier? Before reading your post, I have never heard of the company. Were there specific things that your friends mentioned?

    Published 03 Jan 18Reply
    • Katey wrote:

      I’ve heard their skincare is good and the makeup is very natural! I’ve heard the boy brow product is amazing and so it milk gelly cleanser! xo

      Published 03 Jan 18Reply
  5. Roxy wrote:

    I liked what you said about the podcast and I’m not even a mother. Your manicure post was life changing for sure

    Published 03 Jan 18Reply
    • Katey wrote:

      Thank you so much, Roxy! xo

      Published 03 Jan 18Reply
  6. Ashley wrote:

    I am the same with Gilmore girls, never could keep up who the dialouge and didn’t like the vibe. However, I ended up watching “a year in the life” before diving into the entire series from the beginning and enjoyed it so much! I was introduced to the characters but didn’t ruin anything when I started the actual series. I’m now on season 2!

    Published 03 Jan 18Reply
    • Katey wrote:

      OOh! I will try to watch that! Thank you girl! xo

      Published 03 Jan 18Reply
  7. Joycelynn Rademacher wrote:

    One of my favorite buys this year was the Sweet Caroline Designs planner I saw on your Insta Stories. The print you had was sold out from the website so I hunted one down from a boutique and had it shipped to me. I love it! <3

    Published 03 Jan 18Reply
    • Katey wrote:

      Ahh! I should have included that! See I totally forget things! I adored it and my mom got me a lot of their notepads for Christmas. They have the cutest paper items! xo

      Published 03 Jan 18Reply
  8. Cassidi Stroud wrote:

    Ordering the Gelous nail polish right now! One of my New Year’s Resolutions is to get better at and do at home manicures (thanks to your DIY manicure post;)) and this is just what I need! Also, Gilmore Girls…I tried for years to watch it (even when it was just on TV) but I couldn’t ever get into it because the abundant amount of dialogue drove me nuts. Finally, I just told myself to get over that and I ended up loving it! I even rewatch it now if I can’t find anything else to watch. 🙂

    Published 03 Jan 18Reply
    • Katey wrote:

      I do need to stick with it!! I hear it’s amazing and I want to love it! haha. I love anything mom/daughter related. Girl, the gelous is amazing!! I hope you love it as much as I do! xo

      Published 03 Jan 18Reply
  9. Lindsay W wrote:

    So Gilmore Girls…I was a super fan way back in the day when it still aired once a week. But I was like the ONLY person I knew who watched it back then. Most people would say they didn’t like it because they talked to fast? Not sure if you have that same opinion, but it’s one of those shows you just gotta “roll with it”. I think some people would try so hard to follow verbatim, but for me it was just always about the happy feels I got. I have watched every episode at least 10+ times (not even kidding) and I still pick up on lines I don’t remember hearing before. But it always gives me the same warm, cozy feeling as it did when I was watching 15 years ago. It really is a great story of mother/daughter relationships and the circle of life!

    Published 03 Jan 18Reply
    • Katey wrote:

      Maybe that’s why!! I try to get very detailed with it and have a hard time. I’ll maybe just use it as background noise since I’m home with Maxi all day! Kind of like “Friends.” Thanks so much for reading! xo

      Published 03 Jan 18Reply
  10. Katharine wrote:

    I say parenthood first! I cannot get into Gilmore Girls.

    Published 03 Jan 18Reply
  11. Good to see you spending more on yourself and for self-care! ❤️

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

    Published 03 Jan 18Reply
  12. Mallory McLean wrote:

    Thank you for the hardware inclusion!!! Perfect price point, and good to know you’ve installed with ease.

    Published 04 Jan 18Reply
  13. Anji Duke wrote:

    Thank you for introducing me to Gelous! Your manicure post was spectacular, and it absolutely works just how you say it will. 7 chip free days (insert angels singing here)! Keep up the good work. I always enjoy my morning coffee and Chronicles of Frivolity routine. Looking forward to your 2018 content, (and that home tour!).

    Published 04 Jan 18Reply
  14. Dorian wrote:

    I was a little weary about watching Gilmore Girls at first and it did take a little while to get into. I’m thinking it was maybe towards the end of the first season? I now consider it one of my favorite shows! Actually thinking about rewatching it soon lol. Parenthood was also good, but it took a lot longer to get into.

    Published 04 Jan 18Reply
  15. Pam wrote:

    My husband and I are obsessed with Suits!! We started watching when it first aired, and we’ve rewarded a couple of seasons. So fun to already know Megan Markle from the show!!!! Love you and your blog!!

    Published 06 Jan 18Reply
  16. Jen wrote:

    Ive watched both and have to say Gilmore Girls is 1000 times better than Parenthood but thats just my opinion! Both are good but Parenthood frustrated me at times. I used it more as background noise while cleaning/getting ready. Gilmore Girls is just such a heartwarming journey about a mother and daughter. It will make you laugh, cry, and feel like you know them.

    Published 09 Jan 18Reply
  17. Megan wrote:

    GG Crackers I have been itching to try them, but can’t find them in Dallas. Where do you get them? Amazon has them, but in large quantities.


    Published 06 Feb 18Reply
    • Katey wrote:

      I get mine on Amazon, which is extreme! haha.

      Published 06 Feb 18Reply