Friday, December 22, 2023

Initio Parfums Privés Holiday Gift Guide

There's nothing like receiving a luxurious perfume or candle for the holidays! You can't get more luxe than Initio Parfums Privés! They put so much thought into everything from the box it's packaged in, to the magnificent bottle with gold detail, plus etching and each captivating scent.

A top pick for this season from the Black Gold Project Collection is the best-selling Oud for Greatness Eau de Parfum, with the enchantment of the Tree of Fortune, representing prosperity and destiny. This rich scent has main notes of natural Oud Wood, Agar Wood Oil, Lavender, Saffron, Patchouli and Musk. 

To go along with this fragrance is the Oud for Greatness candle to add that woody scent to any room. This limited edition Oud for Greatness Eau de Parfum and Candle Set (also sold separately) makes such a statement, not just in scent but in appearance. It's beautiful just to have on display in your bedroom or living room. 

My gift to myself is the Psychedelic Eau de Parfum from the Carnal Blends Collection. Do you ever find a scent that you feel was just meant for you? I love woody and floral scents but never thought of mixing them together. It's a very sensual scent for this winter. Psychedelic Love has top notes of Bergamot, middle notes of Ylang Ylang, Myrrh and Rose, and base notes of Vanilla, Patchouli and Sandalwood.

The Initio collections include Absolutes, Carnal Blends, Magnetic Blends, Hedonist and Black Gold Project, all made in Paris. I highly recommend going on a fragrance journey and experiencing all these scents in person. The scents are unisex, so they are shareable with a significant other!

- Kim Weling

Monday, December 18, 2023

Fogo de Chão Now Open at Willowbrook Mall in Wayne, NJ

Have you ever dined at Fogo de Chão (pronounced fo-go dée shown)? Fogo de Chão is a Brazilian steakhouse where gauchos (trained chefs in the art of churrasco) provide an amazing dining experience, carving up signature cuts of fire roasted meat. 

I was so excited Fogo de Chão opened up a new restaurant location at Willowbrook Mall in Wayne, NJ. This is the second Fogo location in NJ. The first NJ location opened up earlier this year at Garden State Plaza in Paramus. 

Be sure to arrive hungry and pace yourself! I started off with the chilled lobster and shrimp seafood appetizer, and then made my way to the Market Table, which has an extensive selection of salads, vegetables and charcuterie. There are also tasty side dishes such as Feijoada - black bean stew with sausage served over rice, and Warm Pão de Queijo - cheese bread. 

Fogo de Chão also has great cocktails! My favorite is the Strawberry Hibiscus Caipirinha, which is one of the $10 all day happy hour South American Cocktails.

Then it was time to flip over my two-sided card to green to enjoy unlimited meat. When I needed a break, I just flipped my card over to red. I was so excited to try everything, including picanha (signature sirloin), ribeye, fraldinha (bottom sirloin), cordeiro (lamb) and more! 

You do not want to miss the dessert so make sure you save some room for it! It's hard to choose just one but they are also great for sharing and you can always have it boxed up to take with you. I recommend the Chocolate Brigadeiro or Tres Leches Cake. If you love cheesecake, try the Açai Cheesecake!

Fogo de Chão is a great place to go for holidays, special occasions or celebrations, for a date night or for a gathering with family and friends. I took my brother with me to celebrate his birthday and we both really enjoyed the food and atmosphere. Thank you Fogo de Chão for having us for this VIP experience. I grew up in this area so I'm happy this opened up here! The gauchos and staff were very hospitable and attentive! They were also happy to answer any questions. I can't wait to go back! 

Check out my highlight reel of my dining experience.

- Kim Weling

Saturday, December 9, 2023

The Perfect Gift for your Dog: Big Barker Orthopedic Dog Bed

If you have a large-sized dog in your family, I recommend getting a Big Barker Orthopedic Dog Bed. It's such a practical and comfy gift for your dog and easy to put together! My boyfriend Dan has a 7-year old German Shepherd in his family, Kenya and she suffers from joint pain. So upon testing out the 7" Big Barker XL sofa style bed (for dogs 60+ lbs) in Charcoal, Kenya immediately started laying on it! It's the perfect size for her and she has plenty of room for her pillows and toys. The bed allows her to stretch and lay on it multiple ways and it's also easy to move from one spot to another. 

This dog bed comes in different colors and also is available in the 4" size (for dogs 20-60 lbs), with the option to include cooling technology and to have your dog's name embroidered on the front (up to 10 letters). 

It's great to see how cozy this dog bed is for Kenya. The proprietary 3-stage foam construction protects joints from painful pressure points, and it's also easier for Kenya to get into the dog bed versus having to jump up on the couch.

The orthopedic dog bed is made in the USA and has a 10 year warranty! You won't have to worry about the dog bed getting flat. The foam is set to last a full decade or you'll get a new one from Big Barker! 

I was so happy to partner with Big Barker on this collaboration and it's so great to see Kenya enjoy her dog bed! 

If you want to see Kenya testing out her dog bed, check out this Instagram reel!

- Kim Weling

Wednesday, December 6, 2023

Bath and Body Works Holiday Gift Guide

Bath and Body Works is a great place to get your holiday shopping done all at once! It's been a long time since I shopped in-store, and it was a fun experience to get to know the new holiday assortment and discover new scents. As I picked up gifts for myself, I also grabbed a bunch for family. 

The 3-wick candles are at the top of my gift list, as well as the cleansing gel and foaming hand soaps, along with festive holders to pair them with. There are great gift under $20 including the Winter Candy Apple body wash, body cream and fine fragrance mist set, but it's also easy to create your own gift set. Don't forget to pick up stocking stuffers such as the PocketBac anti-bacterial hand gels + holders, hand cream and lip products (scrub, mask or lip gloss), all great for travel or to throw in your bag. With many promotions changing from week to week, it's great to mix and match products and fragrances. 

Some of the new fragrances this season include Woodlands (men's collection), Luminous and Northern Brights Eucalyptus & Pine. If you want to shop for holiday scents I recommend Winter Candy Apple, Bright Christmas Morning, Winterberry Ice, and Snowflakes and Cashmere. 

A must-have for me during the holidays are candles and hand soaps in a traditional pine fragrance and Bath and Body Works has a few options, including Tree Farm and Fresh Balsam which I both love. For year-round scents, check out Champagne Toast, Aromatherapy Lavender + Vanilla and Chasing Fireflies.

- Kim Weling