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My Favorite Things Lately - Winter Storm Edition

Modern traditional blue and white kitchen by Houston residential design firm Nancy Lane Interiors.

As y'all know, Texas was hit pretty hard last month with Winter Storm Uri, or as I prefer to call it - Snovid 2021. Here in Houston there was unprecedented damage caused by deliberate long term power outages but I'll spare you the details about that today. It was unreal in many ways and was an experience I know none of us ever want to go through again. It made us count our blessings for sure and it revealed a few things that our family really needed in the midst of an emergency, and a few things that definitely felt like more of an indulgence after surviving the craziest experience any of us have ever had!

Read on for details of my favorite things lately, complete with links for you to grab them as well!


I know this might sound like too little too late, but trust me - if you have a house, you should consider getting a meter valve key to be able to turn off the water at your meter if there's an emergency and you need to, in my humble opinion. We had coincidentally seen a guy from around the corner helping someone on our street turn off their water using this special tool in the middle of the ice situation. Cut to a few hours later when our pipes burst. I knew we had one but couldn't think straight when the water was pouring through the ceiling, so hastily I woke up two of our kids and gave them marching orders to run around the corner to bang on this guy's door and man, this was a lifesaver for us. I'm pretty sure everyone who had pipes burst had one of these on order the very next day. I know my neighbor ordered two!

Hoping to never experience cold temperatures like that again. It got down to 37 or so inside our house with the temps outside around 15. Not Houston weather y'all if you're not familiar with our weather...its like a sauna outside 9 months out of the year. We've pointed out to our kids that the only way we were able to stay put in our home during the crazy weather was the fact that we have a gas stove and a gas fireplace. Without those two things...oh and matches to light both, well, I don't want to think of what we would have had to do. We bought long matches and flame starters in bulk because soon it will be hurricane season. #alwaysbeprepared


These Casaluna towels from Target rival the nicest hotel towels you've ever tried. When our pipes burst, we used every last towel in this dang house to clean up the mess, and any towels that were left over were used for extra warmth layers. And then even those went to clean up, so suffice it to say we needed aaaaall new towels! These towels are affordable, so soft, and really absorbent. I can't recommend them enough!


You may not believe this, but I actually discovered Tyler Candle Diva Detergent while on a run with my girlfriends. I ended up running behind my pal Tarsy in her back draft and I couldn't figure where this new to me glorious scent was coming from. I've been running for 20 plus years and never have I ever smelled anything so good while on a run. Ha! After a minute or two, I asked her if she was wearing a new perfume or a new shampoo, and she said no, she started using a new detergent! I'm telling you - it is the BEST thing you'll ever smell...the website description says its a blend of delicious fruits and rich florals with rich chocolate and amber. Divine. I went right home and ordered some. This is a treat I use sparingly since it is pricier than your normal detergent - I wouldn't use this on my teenagers' clothes weekly, but it's a nice thing to do for bedding and maybe your favorite pajamas to really indulge at nighttime!


Speaking of bedtime, I haven't loved my mattress for years now. My husband has never complained about it, so I've never really made a big fuss about it. Lately though my back has been killing me but I dread even the thought of looking for a new mattress. After this whole winter mess, I mentioned to a friend about my back and she shared that she had gotten a new mattress topper and suggested I give it a try. What the heck...I'll try anything at this point for better sleep. This Tufted Needle Mattress Topper, again from trusty Target, was not that expensive at all, but really delivers in adding extra comfort to our mattress. Just be mindful that you may need a new fitted sheet to accommodate the added inches when combined with your current mattress.


I just bought another one of these devices that connects to my phone. I absolutely love this diffuser because we can have two interchangeable scents turned on and off, depending on our mood. These are strategically placed in my twins' bathroom (moms, I know you feel me on this). It now comes in a new-to-me set with my favorite bamboo scent and now grapefruit, which I have to tell you is surprisingly yummy to me.

Can you tell I've been reveling in the home life from these recommendations? We are three to four weeks out from the contractors finishing their repairs around here after the Snovid-induced water leak and having our house put back together. I love me some construction and remodeling but I'm over the chaos, I have to tell you. I've always appreciated the home where we nurture our family, but even more so now. If your home life can be made better even a little bit from any of these suggestions, I'm happy to share! And let me know what you think about that detergent if you try it - I am truly smitten!

I also included a few other things that I may have purchased #allegedly!

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