I love roundup posts where bloggers have their favorite things list and I knew I wanted to do something like that this year.
Last year I did a roundup of my favorite coffees, but this year I’m expanding beyond coffee and doing a lifestyle version of my favorite things.
Keep reading to learn my favorite things for 2023!
Favorite Things List: 2023 Edition
1. Favorite Read – Fourth Wing and Iron Flame by Rebecca Yarros
The fantasy world Yarros has created in this series is amazing and I love the world-building and character development including the dragon’s character development (because they each have a personality too!).
The book series is “spicy” at times since Yarros is a romance writer and these are “romantasy” books, but her ability to seamlessly weave the “spicy” elements into the storyline is honestly a testament to her writing.
The romance aspect doesn’t bother me, but if you are used to a traditional fantasy story or don’t like romance books/elements it’s something to be aware of as this probably isn’t the series for you.
Regardless, I absolutely loved this series and can’t wait for more in this series from Yarros.
Fourth Wing will eventually turn into a television series too, with the rights having been acquired by Amazon MGM Studios and Michael B. Jordan’s Outlier Society. Yarros is supposed to be involved in a non-writing executive producer role (which I’m glad for…I think book-to-TV/movie adaptations go better when the author is involved, but I guess we will see!).
To see more of what I’ve read this year, visit my Bookshop profile!
2. Favorite Coffee Company – Onyx Coffee Lab
I tried so many amazing coffee companies this year, but Onyx Coffee Lab stood out to me and is on my favorite things list for 2023.
I think it was Ethiopia Core Dako specifically that I drank that I keep coming back to; it was so unique and different.
Onyx Coffee is always working on a new roast or collaborating in some unique way with their Artist Series, so it’s a roaster you can keep coming back to over and over again for something new and different.
A close second and my runner-up in this category (because honestly, choosing just one is hard!), is Campfire Coffee. I mean, coffee beans roasted over a campfire…so cool. Plus they have a white coffee that I love and white coffee needs more visibility.
If you haven’t read that review you can find it here: Campfire Coffee Co. Review.
3. Favorite Clothing Item – The Brianne Knit Top from Laurel Tree and Me
I buy a lot of clothes and getting a new job earlier a few months ago was an excuse to upgrade my wardrobe a bit since I’m on video calls more than before.
I love shopping small when I can and was so excited to find Laurel Tree and Me earlier this year. In addition to fun graphic tees, you can find some great everyday wear clothing items.
The Brianne Knit Top is on my favorite things list because it’s comfy and casual, but you can dress it up with a statement necklace or earrings. I own it in grey, but it’s also available in black and red (brick).
And, being able to support a small mom-owned clothing boutique is just a bonus for me in this category!
4. Favorite Beauty Item – Sol De Janeiro Brazilian Bum Bum Cream
I’m totally behind the times on this one because this lotion/cream has been out for a while and is extremely popular. But I discovered the Brazilian Bum Bum cream this year and I haven’t looked back.
The has become my go-to lotion and I knew needed to be on this favorite things list.
The scent is amazing and I love the way it makes me feel. I have sensitive skin and it has never made me itch or break out like other lotions I have used in the past.
So if you haven’t tried this one yet, it’s a must because it does live up to the hype!
5. Favorite Toddler Toy/Game – Petit Collage Save The Bees Wooden Game
My parents gifted this adorable game to my toddler and our whole family loves it. It’s cute and easy to play (over and over and over again…).
I’m actually a bit surprised by how much I like it still even though I’ve played it too many times to keep track of.
The game teaches basic gameplay (like rolling a die) and also encourages hand-eye coordination. It’s also made well and pretty to look at (it even comes in a nice wooden box!).
Overall, it’s a great game that is easy to teach, learn, and play. I think the only downside is that it’s a two-player game so only two children can play at a time or one child and one adult.
6. Favorite Recipe – Chocolate Maple Pecan Shortbread Bars from Heavenly Spiced
Like everyone, I do a lot of cooking and baking throughout the year and I try all kinds of recipes.
And when I was thinking about my favorite recipe this year, I kept coming back to these delicious Pecan Shortbread Bars from Jenna at Heavenly Spiced.
I have made some delicious dinners and breakfasts throughout the year (this Favorite Yogurt Pancake recipe is a favorite of my daughters!). But, I kept coming back to this simple, yet elevated dessert of Jenna’s.
Because above everything else, it was SO easy! My toddler helped me the first time I made them and had so much fun making the crust specifically.
Jenna also has a new cookbook for 2023: 15 Quick & Easy Air Fryer Appetizer Recipes.
7. Favorite Pet Item – Purina Pro Plan Allergen Reducing Dry Cat Food
I know this might seem like a crazy thing to include on my favorite things list, but seriously, this cat food is awesome.
We switched my cat Bella to this food in June 2023 because my husband is allergic to cats (and yes, he is so sweet that he let me get a cat even though he’s allergic).
But, this allergen-reducing cat food has made such a difference and our cat loves it too!
Other things that have helped my husband’s allergies are my promise that I will keep up with vacuuming (which I do…mostly, lol), keeping the cat out of our bedroom, and the air purifiers we now have in our house (which have honestly helped everyone as there’s less dust).
I’m so glad we have been able to find a way to have a cat and manage my husband’s allergies simultaneously and I encourage you to check out this brand of allergen-reducing cat food if you (or a loved one) are in a similar position.
8. Favorite Self-Care Item – Silk and Sonder
This year, I made it a point to focus on my self-care. It has ebbed and flowed throughout the past year, and I’m still working on it, but I’ve come a long way.
I found Silk and Sonder in August and took the plunge into their monthly planner/self-care journal and have loved it.
It’s helped me keep track of things as far as planning goes (especially with my blog) and I love the self-care journal prompts and pages that are included. Each month has a different theme (a specific word actually) and everything is themed around that word.
November 2023, for example, is themed “Nostalgia,” and one of my favorite prompts was creating a playlist of eight songs that “inspire a sense of nostalgia.” It was fun to explore music this way and think about why I love the songs I picked.
To learn more about Silk and Sonder check out my full review here!
9. Favorite Album – Whitsitt Chapel by Jelly Roll
There were many great albums released this year, including Speak Now (Taylor’s Version) and 1989 (Taylor’s Version). I also loved Dierks Bently’s new album, Gravel & Gold. But for me, the best album from this year is Whitsitt Chapel by Jelly Roll.
Technically it’s Jelly Roll’s first country album, and it’s one that my husband has had on repeat since its release on June 2, 2023 (and I’ve never complained…). My favorite song on the album is “Save Me” which he sings with Lainey Wilson (who I adore).
It’s a great album and a testament to the storytelling that makes country music special.
10. Favorite Bloggers of 2023
I couldn’t pick just one blogger here…it was too hard. So I split this favorite things list category so I could pick two of my favorites for 2023: parenting/home life and self-care/personal wellness.
My favorite parenting/home life blogger this year is Heather of Ever Harc. I adore her printables and DIY things for kids specifically. Plus she has easy recipes and home life content. These are some of my favorites from Heather this year:
My favorite lifestyle/wellness blogger this year is Deanna of Life by Deanna. Deanna’s blog is like a warm hug for me. I find myself seeking it out when I need focus (either in my day-to-day life or my blog life). Plus, I love her reading recommendations and general lifestyle content. Here are some of my favorite blog posts from Deanna this year:
And now I want to know – if you could make a favorite things list, what would you put on it?
Tell me about it in the comments or journal about it in your 5-minute morning coffee journal…it’s a great prompt idea and a fun way to reflect on the year!