Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Jewel Tones and Sequins

Collette Dinnigan blouse, Forever 21 skirt, Alexander Wang bag, J Crew belt, CO-OP Barneys booties

Gabe and I began our "holiday dress up date" tradition last night with dinner out, then returning home to decorate our apartment for the season. After listening to Christmas music all weekend, I felt cheery and festive, which was reflected in my choice of outfits. I've now decided sequins and jewel tones are my new favorite combination for this time of year. What do you wear when feeling festive?

Monday, November 29, 2010

Holiday Traditions

Our gingerbread houses from a few years ago
ice skating in Santa Monica
Christmas shopping (via) holiday movies
Chicago trip

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays for all the family, food, and overall sentimental feeling behind it. But I also love that it marks the unofficial beginning of the holiday season. Although I cheated a bit and started listening to Christmas music last week, I've held out on the movies, decorating, and gift wrapping until now in order to truly commence the festivities. Gabe and I have countless holiday traditions that we build on every year. These are some of our annual holiday activities, as well as a few new events that we're looking forward to this season. What are your holiday traditions?

-spending time with family and friends
-ice skating in Santa Monica
-holiday dress up dates
-spiked eggnog
-Christmas movie marathons
-holiday baking with my mom
-building gingerbread houses
-Christmas shopping with egg nog lattes
-a festive trip to Chicago with shopping on Michigan Avenue and ice skating at Millennium Park
-wrapping presents while singing along to Christmas music

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving! I'll be celebrating by spending time with friends and family, eating a ton of fabulous food, drinking wine, and generally being merry. I'll be back on Monday to tell you all about it. I hope you all have a fantastic holiday weekend!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Being Thankful


overall health/exercise


From a very early age I can remember my parents telling me to "count my blessings". At the time I didn't quite understand what that meant, and would begin counting on my fingers all the items I loved in my toy chest. Over the years, I've learned the meaning behind counting my blessings and feeling thankful for all that I was given in life. I try to feel gratitude every day, instead of just at Thanksgiving, but this holiday is always the perfect reminder and puts everything into perspective. These are just a few of the things for which I'm eternally thankful.

-my family, who loves me unconditionally and always has my best interest in mind
-my husband, who laughs at my jokes, listens to my feelings, loves wholeheartedly, and constantly exemplifies kindness
-my health and ability to be active (same goes for my loved ones)
-overall abundance (love, happiness, hugs, food, etc)
-new experiences and adventures
-dessert (sometimes it's the little things)

For what are you thankful this year?

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Easy Microwave Fudge

I grew up in a family who loves dessert. Over the years this genetic sweet tooth brought us to discover/create countless quick recipes for sweets (such as these peanut butter cookies). This fudge is one of my favorite desserts and takes only minutes to make (in the microwave, no less). It has only four ingredients and can be altered in numerous ways depending on what flavor you're craving. Over the weekend, I made a batch with chocolate and peanut butter, which was fantastic. But I also like to use chocolate/butterscotch, white chocolate/peanut butter, and chocolate/toffee bits/nuts. The options are endless.

Easy Microwave Fudge
3 cups chocolate chips (I substituted 1 cup of chocolate for 1 cup of peanut butter chips)
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1/4 cup butter
1 tsp vanilla

Add all ingredients to a microwave safe bowl and melt chips for 3-5 minutes, stirring every two minutes. Pour into a greased 8x8 baking dish. Refrigerate until set.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Party Time

1. Ella Moss Majesty Sequin Dress $159
2. Milly Liana Mini Dress $395
3. Modcloth the Deveraux Dress $112.99
4. Topshop
Knitted Lace Dress $135
5. Modcloth
Chrysanthemum’s the Word Dress $97.99

As the holidays rapidly approach, I find myself drawn towards tons of party dresses. I could always wear shorts or trousers to holiday parties, but there's nothing more classic than a dress for these events. These are a few of the dresses I'd be more than happy to wear to any upcoming holiday party. What will you be wearing to your festive parties?

Friday, November 19, 2010

What's in My Bag

When Danielle from Sweet Nothings asked me to participate in her "In The Bag" series, I was hesitant. I mean, some days I don't even know what's in my bag and I thought the contents might bring shame or embarrassment to me and/or my family. At times I have wads of receipts, napkins, half eaten granola bars (learned this one from my mom), or handfuls of candy stored in there. However, I try to clean out my bag before going out of town and I had recently done a clean out for our Scottsdale trip. Is it scary that these are what I consider the "essentials"? Thank goodness for large handbags!

-Alexander Wang Rocco Mini Duffle Bag. I have to admit, part of what perked my interest in doing this post was my excitement over my new bag!
-Ray-Ban Cat eye sunglasses
-Notebook and pen to jot down my style and outfit ideas, to do lists, etc.
-My eyeglasses (Ferragamo) that I probably should wear all the time but mostly only wear to drive and watch tv.
-Hobo wallet. I've had this wallet for years and I still love it.
-iPhone. I never thought I needed a smart phone, but now I can't imagine how I survived without it. Similar to how I felt after getting tivo years ago.
-Camera case. I'm obviously using my camera for this photo, but it's always in my purse to catch any shots throughout the day. I use a really old Canon PowerShot Elph. I think it was one of the original digital cameras. It's completely outdated, but I can't give it up. Gabe's been trying to convince me to get a new one for years. Maybe I'll finally give in and put a new camera on my Christmas list.
-Essie Cuticle Oil because you never know when your cuticles will need to be moisturized.
-Mini sunscreen. This has come in handy more times than I can count.
-Dental floss. I like to be prepared.
-Bath & Body Works hand sanitizer.
-Hair bands
-Blue tooth
-7 lip glosses. Why? One for each day of the week? I'm not sure.

Check out Danielle's post (and her awesome blog) here. I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Back to the Basics

Gap jeans, Ciao Bella flats, Alexander Wang handbag, James Perse sweatshirt, Giorgio Armani sunglasses, La Mer watch, Sunday Rocks tank, H&M cocktail ring, Shari Wacks necklace

While I realize this outfit isn't very exciting, it's definitely part of what I'd consider my casual "winter uniform" and similar to what I often fall back on when I need to get dressed in a hurry (skinny jeans, ballet flats, loose fitting top, and big sunglasses). The weather has been unpredictable in Southern California lately and I've been wearing layers in order to be ready for whatever weather the day brings. What outfits do you wear when in a hurry to get out the door?

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

A Touch of Sparkle

2. Halston Heritage Susan Mesh Evening Clutch $235
3. Elie Tahari
Sienna Ruffle-Trimmed Matallic Leather Clutch $198
4. SR Squared by Sondra Roberts
Multi Sequin Clutch $80
5. Lauren Merkin
Diana Metallic Bubble Clutch $195
6. Forever 21
Beaded Clutch $22.80

I remember a time when gold lamé was reserved for Elvis impersonators and 80 year old women. I recall laughing with Lucia (with, not at) about the gold lamé polka dot rain coat her grandma bought her for Christmas one year and thinking it very much resembled something I'd seen Cher wearing on one of her concert tours. Rest assured, I've been eating my words on this one for years, while metallics have come on strong and taken over my closet. And what better way to welcome the upcoming holidays than with a little metallic sparkle? These shiny clutches immediately have me thinking of holiday parties and festive attire.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Scottsdale Weekend

Twelfth Street by Cynthia Vincent dress, Kenneth Cole clutch, Michael Kors pumps and watch, J Crew bracelet

poor quality iphone photo

After a long weekend in Scottsdale, Gabe and I are back home feeling refreshed and relaxed. I spent most of my time relaxing by the pool, having breakfast in bed, reading, and going on long runs around the city. It was the perfect way to recharge before heading into the busy holiday season.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bars

The taste of pumpkin always brings me back to the nostalgic feeling that accompanies the holidays. Once I start seeing pumpkin, nutmeg, and marshmallows on display at Ralph's, I start browsing holiday recipes and deciding what to bake for the upcoming occasions. These Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bars are one of my family's favorite holiday recipes. My mom makes them every year and we often devour them while they're still warm from the oven. These were a special treat on my last visit home and I'm still dreaming about how fabulous they were. What flavors remind you of the holidays?