Friday, December 19, 2014

The weekend is here!

My dearest readers! I can't believe it's the weekend—and another year has gone by. 2014 was a total blur, filled with lots of friends, adventure and fun. Thank you so much for continuing to read my blog. Lots of exciting changes are coming to it in the new year! I so appreciate that you stay in touch and keep up. 

This December has gone by in a blink, too. I'm off for the next two weeks (taking a vacation from the blog, too!), but you can catch me on Instagram for lots of holiday updates and more.

Wishing you a lovely holiday!



PS: A helpful tip for New Year's Eve!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Wreath Witherspoon

I'm always in the mood for crafting, but I've been feeling particularly inspired over the last few weeks. Maybe it's because I saw this awesome (could be DIY!) hostess idea, but it may also be the fact that I love Mindy Kaling's Wreath Witherspoon idea. Hilarious!

On the hunt for another clever celebrity-themed Christmas project? Check out this Ryan Gosling wrapping paper! I mean, who wouldn't want to open a gift covered in that?!

(Image 1, 2, 3)

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

A Cappella Christmas

I'm one of those people who starts listening to holiday music in November. I can't help it! A festive playlist always yanks me away from the pressure of the season (Like holiday shopping! And accelerated deadlines!) and puts me in just the right spirit. My regular readers know my Christmas tradition: This year, I'm going to hear a cappella music in my hometown. The best!

It got me thinking about my favorite Christmas a cappella tunes that I always have playing on repeat on my iPhone, plus a few new ones I've discovered this year. Here, my favorites:

"The Christmas Song" by Forte Femme

Watch the video here.

"Sleigh Ride" by Pentatonix

Listen to the song here.

"Silver Bells" by Rockapella

Listen to the song here.

"Text Me Merry Christmas" by Straight No Chaser and Kristen Bell

Watch the video here.

"All I Want for Christmas is You" by Out of the Blue

Watch the video here.

Happy a cappella Christmas!

(Image 1, 2)

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Hostess Gift Idea: Party horns bouquet

For a holiday party this past weekend, my friend and I were shopping for the perfect hostess gift. We brought a bottle of wine (of course), but we wanted to bring something extra special—and festive! After popping into my favorite neighborhood card shop, we stumbled upon the cutest idea: a party horns bouquet. I know—party horns. Not super original! But the "bouquet" presentation is what makes this gift stand out. In lieu of flowers, it's a ready-to-use party prop (see photo evidence above) and I loved handing it to the host the same way I would an actual floral bouquet.

Have you stumbled upon any festive hostess gift ideas this year? Do tell!

(Image via Nordstrom) 

Friday, December 12, 2014

The weekend is here!

Happy Friday, my darling readers! What do you have planned for the next couple of days? One of my nearest and dearest friends is coming to town so that we can holiday shop, eat good food, party hop, and more! Wishing you a wonderful and relaxing weekend ahead. Here, to get it started right, a few happy posts from around the web:

I tried to lose a guy in 10 days.

Cute crackers.

Kate and William at the Barclays! (I was there, too!)

One more: A Royal recap. :)

French coasters.

The perfect New Year's Eve dress.

Pretty calendar round-up for 2015.

Are you ready for more Girls?!

10-minute apps. Yum.

In the midst of the holiday craziness, remember this.

(Image via Jess Hunter Photography)

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Bordeaux-colored nails

Do you have a go-to holiday nail color? I think that Bordeaux is so stylish and elegant. Plus, it looks polished for work, but perfectly transitions to evening (and party-hopping). 'Tis the season for being cozy and drinking red wine, so really a Bordeaux-inspired hue just makes sense. ;)

After weeks of trial and error at my local nail salon, I've finally found a shade that's not too red, not too brown: Lacy not Racy by Essie. It's just right. 

Do you have a favorite nail color this time of year?

PS: Why short nails are chic

(Image 1, 2)

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

New documentary 'Gasper & Son'

Over the weekend, I popped by the Greenpointers Holiday Market (always worth it for the awesome, crafty finds!) and had the chance to catch an early screening of the trailer for a new documentary called Gasper & Son. It's about the dying art of neon sign making, told through the story of Gasper and his son Robbie, owners of Artistic Neon, based in Queens. 

The trailer is under two minutes, but I was immediately captivated by neon sign making as a business. The hands-on art is something that can't be replaced by a machine, yet Artistic Neon is struggling as one of only a handful of neon sign makers left in the US. The doc is in post-production now and will hopefully be ready to watch in its entirety very soon.

Check out the trailer and let me know what you think!

(Image 1, 2, 3)

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

For the love of pistachios

At my house, over Christmas, there's one gift that always appears beneath the tree: Pistachios. They've always been my dad's favorite snack, but as the years have gone by, all of us have come to love them, especially my sister. That's why I laughed out loud when I stumbled upon this cute, pistachio-themed necklace over at Food 52. The perfect gift? It just might be!

How's your holiday shopping going?

(Images via Food 52)

Monday, December 8, 2014

The British are Brooklyn!

Um, are you guys as excited as I am that Prince William and his lovely lady Kate Middleton are here in New York this week? Better yet, they're in Brooklyn! (They have great taste, obvi.) 

Funny story: I tried to get tickets to the Nets/Cavaliers game they're planning to attend tonight. Here's how the email exchange went down with Matt.

Me: OMG, can we pretty please do everything within our power to get tickets to the December 8th Brooklyn Nets game? Kate and William are going to be there!!
Matt: Tickets are $200+. For nosebleeds.
Me: Because Kate and William are going to be there????
Matt: No. Because LeBron James is going to be there.

Oops. I may know a lot about the Royal Family, but basketball is just not my sport. ;)

Welcome to Brooklyn Kate and William! Now, the big question: What will she wear to the game?

PS: Their full schedule!

(Image via People)

Friday, December 5, 2014

The weekend is here!

Happy Friday, my darling readers! What do you have planned for the weekend? I have big plans to make it over to the Greenpointers Holiday Market. Need some Christmas gifts! Here, to get your weekend started right, a few happy posts from around the web:

We stayed here! (Remember?)

Breakfast pancakes. Yum!

A no-sew tree skirt.

Why I'm excited for next week.

Kickstarter success!

Love this colorful camera strap.

Funny tee.

A DIY Christmas.

Going back to ballet.

Pumped to see this film.

(Image via Pinterest)

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Because I love elephants

I've been on the hunt for something festive to wear to after-work holiday events or parties and had my mind set on a new dress. Then, I saw this origami skirt from J.Crew. The elephant print in gold metallic is so fun! I also love that you can dress it down a bit with an oversized sweater. 

What do you think? Would you wear this skirt?

PS: For elephant lovers (like me!), here's a way to donate to a good cause.

(Images via Fit Fab Fun Mom)

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime

Last night, I had the chance to check out The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime, based on the bestselling book by author Mark Haddon. The New York Times gave it a rave review, so Matt and I jumped at getting tickets. Two words: Go now. Here, my top three reasons to see the show.
1. The acting. The lead character, Christopher Boone, is played by Alex Sharp, a recent Juilliard grad who is making his Broadway debut. I wouldn't be surprised if he receives a Best Actor Tony Award for his role. He's brilliant. I had a hard time taking my eyes off of him during the almost 2 1/2 hour play, he's so captivating. The role also requires an impressive amount of physicality (for example, any touch by another human being sends him into hysterics). Alex handles this seamlessly.
2. The set design. It's simplistic, but remarkable—and a little bit of sensory overload, which perfectly reflects how the lead character feels a lot of the time. The stage is a sort of black box version of graph paper that also doubles as a touch screen. The actors' moves are so perfectly choreographed that a single step lights up the stage, creates a map, or an explosion of digital numbers. At one point it becomes a subway platform—the next an escalator that Christopher can walk down. I loved it.
3. The story. Truth be told, I never read the book. Matt did, and he said the show reflects it well—he's comfortable with the adaptation. Since I didn't know the back story (and wouldn't let Matt give me any spoilers before sitting down!), it was magical and full of surprises. Like I said, I had a hard time taking my eyes off the stage from start to finish.

OK, so tell me: Will you see this play?

(Image 1, 2, 3, 4)

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

A red (or pink) lipstick trick

Come the holidays, I always want to be a bit more bold and wear a bright red (or pink) lipstick. It feels so festive and glam! The problem: 'Tis the season for dry, flakey lips thanks to the plummeting winter temps.

Here's the solution: A lip conditioner! After I use my Fresh Sugar Lip Polish (30 seconds, then wash off with a warm damp cloth), I apply this Peppermint Balm from Beauty Counter. It is life changing! Leave it on for 10-15 minutes and go about your morning routine. Then, once it is mostly absorbed, apply your favorite red or pink shade. Done!

Do you experiment with bright lipsticks during the holidays? 

PS: My favorite lipstick challenge.

(Image 1, 2)

Monday, December 1, 2014

December Page: A toast!

Happy December, my darling readers! This year went by so fast, right? December is always such a busy month. I love the contrast between the frantic holiday shopping and party hopping compared with the calm, happy, and peaceful moments shared with family and friends. My favorite things about this month:

• Sending holiday notes to loved ones, near and far
• Re-watching treasured Christmas movies, like National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation and Home Alone
Putting up a Christmas tree in my apartment
• Going ice skating in Central Park, Bryant Park, or Rockefeller Center
• The first snowfall (which came early this year!)
• Crafts and gift giving—I'm happy to report that I'm making tons of progress on my list!
• Celebrating traditions.

What do you love most about this month?

(Image 1, 2, 3, 4, 5)

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving!

My dearest readers, I'm off for the Thanksgiving weekend! Wishing you a wonderful and relaxing holiday with family, friends and lots and lots of good food. :) Here, to get the delightfully loooong weekend started right, a few happy posts from around the web:

My new fave nail color.

Great tee for all SF fans. :)

Thanksgiving etiquette.

Love this skirt!

A teaser that will make your heart flutter.

What a sweet idea for a kid's book.

Please mail me this card.

Bonus: To make you laugh—and put you in the Thanksgiving spirit!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Movie Page: Jennifer Aniston in 'Cake'

Have you heard about Jennifer Aniston's Oscar-worthy performance in the new film Cake? The film is about Claire Simmons, a woman dealing with chronic pain and grappling with the suicide of a young woman from her therapy group (played by Anna Kendrick). It originally premiered at the Toronto Film Festival, and supposedly, Jennifer knocks it out of the park. 

Personally, I've always been a champion of Jennifer's acting skills. Yes, I loved her in Friends, but I was equally impressed by her work in films like The Good Girl and Friends with Money, too. I think she excels at deeper roles and I'm excited to see her do something different than anything she's ever done. 

It's scheduled to hit theaters everywhere in December and January. What do you think? Will you watch it?

(Image 1, 2)

Monday, November 24, 2014

An ode to my houseplants

As I get ready to travel for Thanksgiving this week, I've been spending a lot of minutes thinking about the houseplants that I've been dutifully watering on my windowsill. For example, this pretty Boston fern: I'm worried it won't make it through the weekend! I water it twice a day right now since it has been so dry. My mom suggested this tip:

"Give your plants a good soaking, then place them on a towel in the bathtub. Next, fill the tub with 1-2 inches of water. They'll take care of themselves while you're away!"

Of course, this only works if you're gone for just a few days, but I think it will be perfect. Will let you know how it goes, but I trust my mom and her impressive green thumb. :)

Do you have any tips for taking care of houseplants when you're away?

(Image 1 via Apartment Therapy)

Friday, November 21, 2014

The weekend is here!

Happy Friday, my darling readers! What do you have planned for the weekend? The next couple of days are busy for me—I'm co-chairing New York Women in Communications' Student Career Conference and I'm also going to see Emma Stone in Cabaret. Big weekend! :) Wishing you a wonderful and relaxing couple of days off. Here, to get it started right, a few happy posts from around the web:

Such a cool (multi) million-dollar idea!

For anyone who loves Salt 'n Pepa.

73 new reasons to adore Amy Adams.

Hang this to get into the holiday spirit.

An ode to old-school Brooklyn.

The gals behind the Everygirl.

Pretty polka dots

Cool project.

Golden elephants!

My new favorite Christmas song.

(Image via Pinterest)

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Taylor Swift is on my morning playlist

What music do you listen to on your morning commute? I'll admit it: Right now, I have "Shake it Off" from Taylor Swift's new album, 1989, on repeat. That song is so infectious!

Truth: Sometimes, even if I have a seat on the subway, I'll give it up just because it's way too tough to sit down while listening to this song. I know this is crazy talk since seats on the A train can be very difficult to come by! ;)

Do you have a song that wakes you up during rush hour?

(Image 1, 2)

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

More cute cards from Garance Doré

I'm a longtime fan of Garance Doré and was so excited earlier this year when she announced her collaboration with Rifle Paper Co. (I even paid a visit to her New York pop-up shop!) She just released new additions to her stationery line. How cute are the adorable cards below?!
I would buy this one to send to my best friend or sister. Those three letters capture the typical way most of my conversations (via phone, text, email or in person) with the two of them begin. ;)
I love this one as a "just because" card to send. One of my favorite expressions is, "Tomorrow's another day." This seems to mimic that—it's just a prettier version. It always sounds better in French, n'est-ce pas? 
This card is another favorite. As you know, I'm such a huge fan of sending handwritten notes. I would love to send this as a note to friends celebrating something special—a new job, a new house, even just as a congrats for hosting a really awesome dinner party!

So, be honest: Do you still send handwritten notes?

(Image 1, 2, 3, 4)

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

The Affair

Is anyone watching The Affair on Showtime? It filmed all summer right in front of our apartment in Brooklyn, so Matt and I decided to check it out. Now, I'm totally hooked—and since I'm basically watching it in real time (instead of binge watching at the end of the season like a normal person), I have to wait with baited breath each week for a new episode to air. ;)

Here's the gist: The show is about a Brooklyn family who spends their summer vacation at their in-laws' estate in Montauk. The dad/husband (played by Dominic West) meets a married waitress (played by Ruth Wilson) and there's a spark...dun dun dun. (I promise, I'm not giving anything away!) One of my favorite parts about the show is the supporting cast which includes Maura Tierney and Joshua Jackson. Anyways, it's intense! I don't think I've yelled at the TV this much in a long, long, long time. :)

Are you watching this show? Any other fall TV you're newly addicted to? Would love to know!

PS: In case you're hesitant to commit, The Affair has already been renewed for season 2!

(Image 1, 2, 3 and 4)

Monday, November 17, 2014

Brunch Page: The Butcher's Daughter

I first heard about this sunny brunch spot from Bri over at Design Love Fest—she recommended The Butcher's Daughter as one of her favorite New York spots when she was in town to teach Blogshop last year. 

This past Saturday, I finally made it over there for a solo brunch, iPad in hand. I nabbed a window seat (those vintage-looking stools swivel out) and ordered the smashed avocado toast and a cup of green tea. Delicious! But my favorite part truly is the interior design. The whole place is so airy and bright. I especially love the pops of yellow against all the white. With the sun shining in, it was a lovely spot to sit, read, eat and write.

What's your favorite spot for a cozy winter brunch? Do you have a go-to place?

More New York brunches here, here, here, and here.

(Image 1, 2)

Friday, November 14, 2014

The weekend is here!

Happy Friday, my dearest readers! What do you have planned for the weekend? I am SO excited to say that I am getting a haircut. I can't tell you how overdue I am. Will try to post a pic next week of my new 'do. :) Wishing you a wonderful Saturday-Sunday ahead. Here, to get your weekend started right, a few happy posts from around the web:

70 questions for Reese.

Love this apple crostada recipe. Yum!

Faux-braiding—just what I need.

Oh, Jimmy. (Plus, this is a great read.)

I so want to give this a try. Yum!

One week from seeing Emma. Counting the minutes. :)

Love these winter gloves.

Perks of dating someone older.

The best advice about hat hair.

C'est la vie!

(Image via The Coveteur)

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Holiday shopping strategies

This year, I'm trying to get a jump start on my holiday shopping and avoid the December rush. I'm always such a last minute girl with Christmas! I keep thinking: If I can just iron out my gift list now, I'll be so prepared when Cyber Monday rolls around! 

Since I have time on the subway, I've been using my morning and evening commute to jot down notes about the people in my life that I love and gifts that might suit their interests. It sounds funny, but the subway is such a helpful place to ponder ideas. My goal is to at least have a finished list by Thanksgiving. Fingers crossed. ;)

Do you have any gift-giving strategies? How do you get a jump start on your shopping? Would love any tips and advice!

PS: One of my favorite sites for gift ideas!

(Image via Pinterest)

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Travel Page: Southern California

A month late, but at last—a recap of my trip to California to see my little sister. It was so nice to be able to take a week and pop out for a visit and some road tripping around LA. I miss her! But man, did I run her ragged during my stay. Seven days seems like so much time, but there is so much to do where she lives. What I learned: All plans need to be made with LA traffic patterns in mind. ;) Still, we had such a fantastic time. Here, some pics if you'd like to see what we did...

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

1 Weekend, 3 Restaurants

This past weekend was all about good food in Brooklyn. It was mostly spontaneous: Matt and I had no intention of eating three meals out. But our Friday-Saturday-Sunday plans took us to different neighborhoods with restaurants that had long been on our list. The first, Union Pizza Works in Bushwick. Has anyone been? We had plans to see this awesome show in Brooklyn, so decided to grab a bite nearby. The pizza was delicious, the ambiance even better. They even have this cool neon sign. :) We still had two more places to go...