Fill Your Christmas Stocking with…Stockings!

When you were a kid, getting socks for Christmas was THE WORST. But stockings are the grown up, much more fun, distant cousins of socks that the special female in your life would love to get for Christmas. If you’re stuck on ideas for stocking stuffers this year, or just want to treat yourself, then take a look at some of the stockings I’ve picked out from Yandy’s hosiery section. Below are my favorite stockings and some ideas for how to wear them.

There’s nothing more classically sexy than stockings with a back seam. You can go for a full on retro look, or style them for a more modern outfit. I wore mine with a faux leather skirt and chunky black boots for a more edgy vibe. The garter belt also gives you a little boost of confidence and makes you feel like you have a little sultry secret that no one else knows about.

These over-the-knee socks are a great gift choice because they are so versatile. They can be dressed up or down, and can be worn either pulled up to the thigh or scrunched down below the knee. I really like the country girl feel they bring to this outfit when paired with brown leather boots and a flowy dress.

sitting in santa's sleigh

Glittering Diamond Thigh High Stockings

For a gift that really “wows”, I would choose these sparkling thigh high stockings. They can really take an outfit to the next level and are perfect for holiday parties. I really like that they are thigh high, rather than going all the way up to the waist, so they are more comfortable – especially when wearing a lot of layers in the winter. They don’t slip down as you walk around either, which can be super annoying. They really stand out with an all black outfit. I wore them with a plain black dress, black faux fur coat and chunky heels.   

When in doubt, you can’t go wrong with a pair of black opaque tights, like these Solid Micro Fiber Tights. Black tights are a staple for any women’s wardrobe, and these are good quality tights that don’t feel like they’re going to rip from a single scratch of your manicured nails.

If you want to really go all out, you can further supplement your stocking stuffer gifts with accessories like Garter Suspender Straps, or Leg Harnesses. Don’t be afraid to get creative! There’s really something for everyone.

Yandy has a huge selection of holiday-themed lingerie and more. Don’t forget to use my code, ‘thekellyroberts20’ to get 20% off your order! Happy holidays!

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The Perfect Pajamas for Christmas Morning

There’s nothing like waking up and realizing that it’s Christmas morning. Even as an adult, I still feel that buzz of excitement as I wonder what could be under the tree for me this year. Of course, I have to put the tree together all by myself and do all of the Christmas shopping, so some of the mystery has disappeared. It’s still fun to get into the Christmas spirit and relive some of the traditions I had growing up.

Pajamas and Christmas go hand-in-hand, so wearing holiday-themed pj’s is an essential part of my Christmas morning. Yandy sent me some pieces from their holiday pajama collection that are so cute, and perfect for sitting around the tree on Christmas morning and opening presents.

Sexy Christmas Pajamas Crop Top Red and White Stripes
Candy Cane Cutie Pajama Pant Set

The red and white-striped pants are so comfy, and the cropped tank top gives the outfit a sexy touch. This pajama set makes me feel like Britney Spears in a Christmas-themed music video circa 2001 and I’m not complaining.

There’s always that period of time on Christmas morning when you’re waiting for everyone to wake up and get their act together so we can start opening presents. While I’m waiting around, I can’t help but stare at the presents and try to guess what they are by their shape. I don’t know about you, but I always shake my presents before I open them. Trying to figure out what’s inside is almost as exciting as actually opening the gift. Is it jewelry? Socks? Channing Tatum in the flesh? Detective Kelly is on the case.

Shaking Christmas presents under the tree
Candy Cane Hearts Sleep Shirt

This sleep shirt is made from the same material as the striped pants, so it is also super soft. It also has adorable little heart patches on the elbows which I could not resist. It has a loose fit, so you can look cute and also actually sleep in it.

When I was growing up, we would bake cookies on Christmas Eve and leave out a few cookies along with a glass of milk for Santa. On Christmas morning, the plate would be cleared, but there were always leftover cookies for us to enjoy. Thinking back, I’m kind of jealous that my mom got to secretly eat cookies in the middle of the night under the guise of Santa.

Dear Santa I Can Explain Tshirt Pajamas
Dear Santa I Can Explain Shirt Dress

Have you been naughty this year? Then this is the sleep dress for you. So much sass. It has the comfiness of a t-shirt with a more form-fitting cut. I am all about comfort, especially when I’m not leaving my house.

I just baked these chocolate crackle cookies and they are soooo yummy. Perfect for dipping in a cold glass of milk. I will definitely be baking them again in time for Christmas. What are your favorite Christmas morning traditions?

Yandy has a ton of great lingerie for Christmas too! Shop Yandy’s full Christmas collection and don’t forget to use code ‘thekellyroberts20’ for 20% off!

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Exploring The Mogollon Rim: Rim Lakes Vista Trail Guide

Last weekend I finally had the opportunity to the see Mogollon Rim, which is a really beautiful area near Payson, AZ. It features a 2,000 ft deep canyon filled with trees and wildlife. It’s only 1.5 hours from Phoenix but could not look more different. Living in Scottsdale, I don’t get to see tall trees and lush greenery very often, so it was great to be able to escape the barren desert even just for a day (as much as I love it!).

I did my research before going and decided to hike the Rim Lakes Vista trail. On the advice of others on the All Trails app (this app is a must if you are a hiker), I chose to hike just the portion of the trail that follows the rim and skip the more inland half of the trail. Getting there from Phoenix, I took the 87 North all the way to the 260 East and made my first stop at the Rim Visitor Center.

Mogollon Rim Visitor Center

There was a lookout point here where I snapped some pictures and then got my bearings straight on where the trail actually started. You have to drive across the road from the visitors center to a separate parking lot immediately on the right side of the road. You will see an obvious trailhead, but this is actually for the back side of the trail that I skipped, which is called the General Crook trail. Instead, walk to the other side of the parking lot and you will see a very discreet sign that says “Trail” – this is where you want to go. Follow the path in the grass and you will eventually come to a sign that says “Rim Lakes Vista Trail.”

Rim Lakes Vista Trail

The trail is overgrown is some spots and it can be slightly difficult to follow, but not impossible. There are “trail” signs and cairns along the way, and if you have your All Trails app open you will not get lost! The trail winds through a forest that looks like it has seen better days, if I’m honest, and ultimately brings you to the rim. Despite the unfortunate deforestation, it is still a very nice, serene hike that should not be overlooked. I didn’t see anyone else on the way in, and only came across two mountain bikers on the way out. Peaceful hikes are my absolute favorite.

Mogollon Rim Forest

Once you get to the rim, prepare for your jaw to drop. The view is stunning and you can walk right up to the edge – but be careful, there are a lot of crevices in the rocks near the edge and you could easily fall to your death.

Mogollon Rim View

Rim Lakes Vista Mogollon Rim

Hiking Mogollon Rim

It was a bright and sunny day when I went, and temps were in the 60s, so it was perfect hiking weather. All you need is a light sweater and long pants or leggings and you should be warm enough. If you go in the summer, I would recommend against wearing shorts because there are a lot of prickly shrubs and I did get my pants caught on one. You wouldn’t want to get stabbed in the leg by a plant!

Tree Hugger Hiking Mogollon Rim

I didn’t track it, but I think I hiked around 4 miles. There is very little elevation gain so it is a very easy hike that most people could do without even breaking a sweat. This is a great trail for both beginner and experienced hikers because you get a lot of bang for your buck. If you want to see the Mogollon Rim, this is definitely the spot to go check it out and take it all in without the crowds of people.

Have you hiked the Mogollon Rim? Let me know your trail recommendations in the comments!

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Norway In A Nutshell Review: Sognefjord

View Of Aurland From Stegastein

This past May, I had the privilege of touring Norway via the Sognefjord in a Nutshell tour with my dad. We stretched it out into 3 days of travel and sightseeing by adding on some activities and stopping over in Bergen and Aurland. This trip was absolutely incredible – Norway is probably one of the most beautiful places I have ever been, right up there with Scotland and Ireland. If you are a nature lover like me, then you will love this tour.

Norway in a Nutshell is known for being overpriced since it isn’t really a tour – it’s more of just organized transportation. The website is also very confusing to use and I had to go back and forth with one of their representative over email to figure it out. However, knowing that everything is arranged and you don’t have to worry about booking everything individually is a big relief. They do want you to book your hotels through their website, which I highly recommend against, in the larger towns/cities anyway. You will find much better deals on your own. The exception is the very small towns like Aurland where there is really only one place to stay.

Once all of the planning was finished, I had several months to wait eagerly for the trip. Going to Norway is something my dad and I have talked about for many years because he is half Norwegian and we have always wanted to learn more about our heritage. I had always idealized Norway and dreamed of being immersed in the majestic fjords. I’m kind of a tree hugger.

Finally the big day arrived. After three connecting flights, all of which were delayed several hours, we spent our first day in Norway exploring the city of Oslo while very jet lagged. Our first night was spent at the Comfort Hotel Xpress Central Station, which was a very bare bones hotel in the city center, but it was exactly what we needed to get some rest before the start of our tour the next day.

Day 1: Oslo to Bergen  

Our Norway in a Nutshell adventure began bright and early with our first train departing at 8:25 am. This train journey would last 6.5 hours and take us through a variety of landscapes, finally arriving in Bergen at 2:57 pm. We had collected all of our tickets the day before at the train station so we wouldn’t have to deal with it in the morning, which was definitely a good idea as there was a long line in the morning. It was very easy to find the train platform and we had no trouble finding a place to stow our luggage.

The train journey to Bergen was very scenic and overall a pleasant train journey that certainly did not feel that long. I was glued to the window for the entire 6.5 hours. Once we got to Bergen, my dad’s friend, Knut, picked us up from the train station and brought us to our hotel. We stayed at the Citybox Bergen – another very minimal, budget hotel. This hotel had a self-check in that many other tourists were struggling to use so it took longer to check in than expected. However, the hotel was perfectly adequate for a one night stay. I had mentioned wanting to hike Stoltzekleiven and Knut suggested we do a different hike at the same location. This one he said was off the beaten path, and a much better hike. Me and my dad were both pretty exhausted so we weren’t really up for anything super difficult, and he assured us it wouldn’t be. Fast forward half an hour and we’re basically rock climbing up the side of a mountain. I’m a fairly experienced hiker, but this guy was kicking our butts at this hike and we could barely keep up. These Norwegians know how to keep in shape!

Hiking in Bergen

Sherpa Stairs Bergen Sherpa Building Stairs Bergen

After some pictures we made our way back down the mountain. Knut explained to us how sherpas from Nepal came to Norway to build these stairs and hiking trails all around the country. They know the mountains better than anyone else and we got to see them actually working on the steps as we walked down. We finally arrived back at Knut’s house and his family welcomed us to a barbeque. It was great to be able to spend some time with locals and see more than just the typical touristy stuff, so we were very lucky to have that connection in Bergen.

Bryggen Bergen

After dinner, Knut took us to the city center to explore and see Bryggen – the famous historic buildings lining the harbor. We wandered around until it was time to turn in for the night. We had a boat to catch at 8:00 am the next day. As it was late May, the sun didn’t go down until after midnight (I don’t think it ever fully set), so it was very confusing going to bed in the daylight.

Day 2: Bergen to Aurland

Bergen Harbor

We woke up bright and early as we wanted to allow enough time to find the departure point in the harbor. It was luckily very easy to find as there were plenty of other tourists getting on the same boat. There was a mad scramble to get to the upper deck and grab seats as there weren’t many. We managed to get a great spot where we ended up staying for most of the journey, which was about 5.5 hours long, arriving at 1:25 pm in Flåm.

Windy Hair Norway Boat Ride

The boat ride was our first time getting a look at the fjords, and this is where the “oohs and aahs” really started. It was super windy, especially near the railing and toward the back, so definitely hold on tight to anything valuable. It was unseasonably warm and sunny, so there were plenty of waterfalls to see along the way from the melting snow.

Norway in a Nutshell Waterfall

It’s hard to describe the beauty of the fjords because you really have to see them in person to fully experience it. It’s like being in an oil painting. I didn’t want to look away for even a second and miss something amazing. We stopped a few harbors along the way and people left and boarded the boat, so there are definitely other paths you can take on your personalized Norway in a Nutshell trip. I was so glad I had decided to add on the Heritage Fjord Safari Tour in Flåm because I wanted to be even further immersed in the fjords.

Our tour was scheduled for 3:15 pm and lasted 2 hours. We put on floatation suits and goggles and boarded an inflatable raft. Our tour guide was extremely knowledgeable about the area and told us stories about various different sections of the fjords and the people who have lived, and currently live there. We navigated into the crevices of the fjords and got to see seals lounging around. Meanwhile, my dad is somehow dozing off during what I thought was a spectacular tour. I guess if you’re not into nature, then it’s not for you!

Heritage Fjord Safari Tour Flotation Suits .Heritage Fjord Safari Tour Norway

Heritage Fjord Safari Tour Sognefjord

Vangsgaarden Gjestgiveri

There was not much to do or see in the town of Flåm, so I was glad we were not spending the night there. After the tour, we boarded a local bus to get to Aurland, which is where we were staying for the night. The person working in the tourism office in Flåm was super helpful about telling us where and when the bus would be coming to pick us up. We definitely didn’t want to miss it as the buses are very infrequent and there’s basically no other way of getting there. The bus took us down winding roads and dropped us off in the very small town of Aurland. We were starving by this point and there is only one restaurant in this town which is attached to the hotel where we stayed, Vangsgaarden Gjestgiveri. The food was decent but very expensive. Unless you want to starve, this is your only option.

Aurland is a quaint and charming little town. My dad was exhausted after eating so he went to bed and I decided to go and explore on my own. I sat down in the grass on the edge of the fjord and just sat there for maybe half an hour, soaking in my surroundings. I saw very few people while walking around and it was almost kind of eerie. I suspect during the winter it could be kind of creepy, but when I was there it was so serene, I could have just stayed there forever. I tried to imagine what life must be like for the people who live in this tiny little town, tucked away in the mountains and snow.

Aurland Norway Fjord Aurland Norway Shed  Aurland Norway

Day 3: Aurland to Oslo

I really did not want to leave Aurland, but I was excited to go up to the Stegastein Viewpoint and continue on our journey. The viewpoint required us to purchase tickets for a separate tour bus which would also take us back to Flåm later in the day (we purchased the tickets in Flåm). The tickets are 325 Krone per adult, which is about $38 each. I think it is also possible to hike to the top, but you would need a lot more time and endurance than we had. A small bus took us to the top, up winding roads and some very sharp turns, with a handful of other tourists. We were given about 30 minutes to go and take pictures, which was enough but I wish it had been longer.

View Of Aurland From Stegastein

View From Stegastein Stegastein Viewpoint Norway Stegastein Viewpoint

The view was absolutely breathtaking and the architecture of the actual structure was pretty cool as well. We managed to get in some good pictures before another bus of tourists arrived and took over the area. It was definitely worthwhile to make the trip up here, so don’t pass it up if you have time for it. I also recommend going to the bathroom while you’re up here – there’s a great view from the toilet!

Carved Tree in Flam

The bus took us back down to Flåm and we grabbed some food before catching our 4:04 pm train back to Oslo. The first leg of the journey was to Myrdal, which is also known as the Flåm Railway, or Flåmsbana. It has been said to be the most beautiful train journey in the world, so I was super excited for this part of the tour. I had read before the trip that you should sit on the right side for the best view, so we were sure to board the train early and get good seats.

Flam Railway Waterfall

There were plenty of “oohs and aahs” during the entire train ride. I had never been on a train before where literally everyone was filled with delight and rushing from side to side to take pictures. You will see plenty of waterfalls and lush landscapes, but the real highlight of the ride is where it stops to let you off the train briefly and watch Huldra sing her song. According to legend, she emerges from the forest to lure men with her singing and dancing. It was such a bizarre thing to watch – I mean has this ever happened on your daily commute? But with the waterfall blowing mist, and the foggy ambiance, it really did feel magical.

You can’t really hear her in the video, unfortunately, since the waterfall is so loud, but you get the idea. After she finishes her performance, everyone boards the train again and we make our way to Myrdal. Here, we had about 50 minutes to kill before our final train to Oslo. There’s a small cafe at the Myrdal train station and not much else. The last leg of the journey was scenic, but nothing much compared to what we had seen over the last 2 days. After another 5 hours, we were back in Oslo. We stayed at a place called Oslo Central Station Apartment, which was a really nice, spacious apartment with two bedrooms, for the end of our Norwegian adventure. All in all, the Norway in a Nutshell tour was the trip of a lifetime for me and my dad. It was something we will never forget, and I highly recommend going yourself if you can.   

Do you have a trip to Norway planned? Comment below with any questions and I will do my best to answer them!

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