The 2014 Holiday Card.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

 Do you all send out holiday cards each year? I'm a huge fan, and honestly receiving them from all our friends around the country is pretty much my favorite part of the season. I always hang them up in our kitchen, and I have to force myself to take them down by the end of January! 

Usually, I know in advance what picture I am going to use in our card, but this year it was tough. I can't believe it, but in 365 days, I wan't able to get a picture where both boys were looking at the camera, in a size that would be large enough to print. I had some amazing pictures of them individually, but nothing together. Blah. After some digging through the 2,000 photos stored on my phone, I happened upon a great picture of the two, and even better, it was from one of our favorite days of the Summer. Instead of choosing a card with a lot of print, I went for something simple, and decided to hand write a note on the back. I'm not quite sure when I'll actually get around to doing the later… but I'm determined to get it done!

As you can see, the boys are most definitely not looking at the camera, but I couldn't love this shot of them any more, and I'm sure our friends and family will too! 

P.S. Isn't this the cutest way to hang those cards you receive? I think I'm going to try it this year!
P.P.S. Our cards are from Pinhole Press. If you look around you can usually find a 20-30 percent off code on their Facebook page!

Home For The Holidays.

Monday, November 25, 2013

This year, my immediate family and I are doing something we haven't done since long before the birth of the Little Man… we are staying home for the Holidays! Not just Thanksgiving, but Christmas too. Due to combination of ticket prices, and scheduling headaches, this year we are forgoing our big trip to Maryland for turkey day, and also the trip to California that usually follows a few weeks later. At first we were really disappointed about not spending this time with both our families, but right now, as a massive storm is coming our way, I have to say I couldn't be happier about our decision to stay put. I am really looking forward to making some new holiday traditions, ones that just can't be done when you are packing and unpacking for a solid month. 

For instance, almost every year, except I think one, we picked up our Christmas tree around Dec 23, or 24, which is usually a hurried event because we just flew in the night before, and I am in a panic to get everything done before Christmas Eve. I think last year, we may have gotten it a few weeks earlier, and I remember that the tree was almost dead when we got back from California! This year, I'm really looking forward to picking out a tree, as a family, not at the beginning or the end of the month, but smack in the middle! I'm also looking forward to little things with the kids, the nightly Elf on the Shelf, Advent calendars, slowly decorating the house, skating on the Frog Pond, and not having nightmares about layovers, snowstorms, and cranky toddlers! 

The best part is, most the family that we are missing during this holiday season will be joining us for Spring Break in Costa Rica, so while we are disappointed that we won't be spending time with them the next few weeks, we have a much bigger (and warmer) adventure ahead early next year, AND not being away allowed me a few days before Christmas to head to NYC with the kiddos in tow for some much needed girl time with my best friends, and my SIL. You guys, I could not be more excited!

So, this year we will have a few of our own traditions. A vegetarian Thanksgiving courtesy of Whole Foods (regular for the boys :)),  and my husband is already plotting a nap time surf trip up to New Hampshire while the boys are anxiously awaiting a movie afternoon. After a trip to Michaels, I am ready to attempt my first "table scape" (warning, the spray paint will be flying!) and I'm also going to run my first Turkey Trot on the big day. Through the *magic* of Skype, we will most definitely be checking in with both our families… but there is a chance I will be in my Pajamas. I mean, if it's just the four of us, is there any reason to get dressed? I think not.

How about you all? Do you usually stay home, or travel to see your family? For those of you who are flying out Wednesday, I wish you safe and delay free trip!

(Photo via Design Sponge)

Weekend Links.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Happy Friday! What are you all up to this chilly weekend? Tomorrow, the Little Man and I have a big skate date, where I'm pretty sure he's going to nail jumping 4 stairs! He was this close last week, and it's pretty much all we talk about around here. Wish us luck! Other than that we will pretty much be home bound, as it's about to get real cold, real fast. We have a gingerbread making kit, and the last few episodes of Master Chef Junior (we are all obsessed) burning a hole in our DVR. Sunday, I'm going to make a big pot of Spaghetti, using my favorite recipe from my Mother-in-law for the singular reason that it raises the temp about 5 degrees inside. Oh man, I am so not ready for Winter! 

Whatever you all have planned, I hope you have a great weekend! Here are a few fun links from around the web. See you all next week!

I NEVER knew this! Did you? Mind blowing.

I am absolutely in love with everything in this room. It speaks to me on so many different levels.

A few days ago, we started doing the whole Elf on the Shelf thing, and the kids are obsessed. Here are a few good ones, from someone way more creative than me.

I know it's a little early, but how great is this alternative to a traditional tree? Perfect for those with small spaces!

My new go to appetizer for parties. So good!

Speaking of the holidays, this is pretty much what I have planned! ;)

I have a feeling this will catch on!

This really, really makes me want a dog. DYING!

… and this, another baby.

But then I watched this, and was quickly brought back to reality. The zippers get us I swear this guy has a camera in our house!

I am LOVING my blonde hair, and already want to go blonder. This cut is definitely in my future!

These boots are toping my Christmas list! I love the low heel!

The most perfect gift for any child, anywhere… found!

Yep! P.S. I'm pretty sure I'm getting #3 in the next couple of months. eek

Pure awesomeness.

Finally, people, SLOW DOWN. I'm talking to myself here too.

Camouflaging the Television.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

 Lately, I've been feeling pretty settled in our home. Sure, there are a few more projects on my to-do list, and I have yet to move the boys in together, but generally I am happy with what we have going on, and everything that's left is pretty planned out. That being said, there is something that has been driving me a little batty in our living room, which just so happens to be one of the most debated issues in most living rooms; what to do with the TV. When we first moved in to our place, we had it mounted on the wall and basically called it a day. Six years later, nothing has changed, and I still cringe every time I see that big black box sitting alone on the wall. For years, I've considered turning it into a gallery wall, which seems to be the best way to avert the eye, but the space really isn't big enough, and I'm afraid it would just add clutter. 

Yesterday, I was looking for a wallpaper sample and it hit me. What if I did a black or navy wallpaper, just on the wall behind the TV? Yes, it would still be there, but it would be such a great way to camouflage it. I've got a few calls in for quotes, and I still have to fully convince my husband, but don't you all think that would be such an easy fix? 

Of course, the question then becomes what wallpaper? My first choice is unequivocally this Deyrolle inspired print. I think it would look amazing in our living room, and it is so insanely beautiful, I swear I will walk away and call it a day after it goes up. 

I love that it looks like a gallery wall, and the boys wouldn't be able to get enough with all those animals. The problem is that I can't really figure out where to get it (the manufacturer is in France and hasn't gotten back to me)  and I am pretty sure it isn't going to be cheap. As a back up, I think that this paper by Anthropology would be equally as awesome. 

The books would be cool, and it would definitely help to hide the TV. I've been dying to wallpaper a room in our house, and this wall seems like the perfect place to start. I'm not really sure why I didn't think about this earlier!

Speaking of wallpaper, a few months ago, I decided to forgo it in the guest room and instead set my sights on two Carter Kustera portraits of the boys. Well, today those prints are available on Gilt city for half the price AND an additional 25% off with the code 25 Turkey! You can bet I scooped those right up! I feel like these make the perfect Christmas gift (it's a good thing my kids can't read this) and if you were thinking of these, this is a great deal! (Thanks Melissa for the tip!)

What do you you all do with the TV? Do you try to disguise it at all, or just let it be? I'd love to know!

I’ll just be myself … and do the very best I can.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

 It's funny where you can find inspiration. Yesterday, I went to one of my very favorite blogs, stylebyemilyhenderson in search of my daily fix of amazing home loveliness, and instead found myself reading one paragraph, from her birth plan of all places, over and over. This morning when I woke up, I found myself again reading it on repeat. It reads:
 "I’ll just be myself … and do the very best I can." In case you are wondering what my parenting method is too, it’s the same answer … also for my career and marriage. There is something about determination that is great and very important, but life is too fluid to be able to predict (or judge) your own reactions to things.
I really don't know why this speaks to me so strongly, but it just does. Lately, at the end of the day, I've been feeling like a bit of a failure. Not in my own life, just life in general. For example there are days where I feel like superwoman, having run 6 miles, showered, remembering to return the library books (on time), got the kids to and from school, dressed and fed, put multiple meals on the table, put away the laundry, made beds, cleaned up, caught up with friends on the phone, spent time with my husband… etc, and then I will get on my computer and see some of my personal heroes absolutely killing it. Women like Emily, Jenny, Ali, Jenni, Christiane, Joanna, Emily the list goes on and on. Not only are these women complete success stories in the creative world, but many of them have 2, 3, 4 (Ali has 5!!!) kids, and somehow they manage to have magazine quality homes, perfect blowouts, and 1,000,000+ blog followers, and insanely profitable self made businesses. My patting myself on the back for a successful day will then turn to a interrogation in my mind, wondering how they can do it all, and why I can't.  

Honestly, how do they do it all? When do they find the time? Most days I can't spare a minute to put on mascara, and these women are planning menus for their restaurants, launching spring lines, styling homes to perfection, turning Ikea cabinets in to built in works of art. It's hard not to compare yourself, and honestly, I wish I could say, "oh, they don't have kids," or "they must have someone else do it all," but it seems like most of these women are really hands on Moms and design superstars, and I'm like, "yay! I remembered to buy dish soap, AND put up a blog post." Doesn't really compare. And yes, I've read the quote "comparison is the thief of joy," and I totally agree, but in my head it's not like I am lusting after their homes, or lives, it's more of a comparison of their drive versus mine. Their creative talent. Do some people just have it and some don't? Do they have kids that just quietly play in ABC Carpet and Home, while mine would find a way to burn the place down? Do they ever sleep? Are they witches or gypsies? Do they look at women like Tory Burch, or Marissa Mayer and wonder how they do it? I can't even comprehend that level of success. Let's be honest, I can't even finish this damn book in the next year. 

 Back to the quote. 

I feel like I have to stop this dialogue. That or give up my Internet, and we all know that isn't going to happen. I am going to adopt Emily's mantra as mine for the next few months, and see where that gets me. "I'll just be myself… and do the very best I can." Seems easy enough, right? At the very least it will allow me to be proud of my own accomplishments, no matter how small, and best case scenario, my best gets a little better, and that can't be a bad thing either. 

I get that things don't happen overnight, and that some people are just built for greatness. I have absolutely no complaints about the life I am living, and I truly feel so fortunate for every day with my family and friends, and especially my two awesome kids. Millions of people are trying to figure out how to put food on the table tonight, and I'm struggling with finding greater personal satisfaction- I get how lucky I am. However, I also think it's important to never stop growing, and for me the ultimate satisfaction would come from creating something greater than I ever thought was possible. 

Until then, I’ll just be myself … and do the very best I can.

On Trend: Cool Kicks.

Monday, November 18, 2013

 I'm not going to lie, I get a good majority of my fashion inspiration from my 6 year old. Sure, I buy his clothes, but the kid definitely has a mind of his own, and I'll often ask him for a thumbs up or down before getting him (or me!) something new. Given that he spends most of his time at skate parks and skate shops, it's no surprise that he is heavily influenced by the street culture, and yes, hip hop, and I'm noticing more and more I'm gravitating towards those things too. Now, I'm not talking Kardashian street culture here, in fact it's the opposite, it's a more laid back look, one that is only completed with the right pair of sneakers.

Now, other than my trusty old vans or converse, I have never been a sneaker fan. I really don't even like them for the gym. I always found it hard to make them look "cool" and in my head I always have the image of myself, in my lawyer days, running late for court in a pair of BRIGHT WHITE nike running shoes, hose, and a skirt suit, with my heels in my bag. Uh huh, I was that girl. My husband would tease me relentlessly, but really what was I to do? They were just so comfortable, and I was always late for something!

That's the thing, they really are just so comfortable. I love a heel, ballet flat, and a bootie just as much as the next girl, but to play football with two wild animals (my children) you really have to have the right footwear. Well, after taking the boys to get some new shoes at the Vans store, an incredible pair caught my eye, and the LM immediately said, "you should totally get those!" At the time I passed, thinking there was no way I could pull them off, but after watching the boys strutting around in theirs for a week, I caved, and for the past three weeks I've worn nothing but. 

I'm still not 100% sure I'm not too old to wear them, but surprisingly I've gotten a few compliments, and well, my kids think they are pretty awesome. I have to revert back to the fact that if the LM approves, you know you are good to go. 

Behold my new kicks, found here. 

Need a little inspiration for what to pair them with, other than jeans? I did! Looking at these chic ladies, I have to say the sneaker might just be the newest trend!

What do you all think? Are you big sneaker wearers? I kind of don't remember what life was like before them! 

Back to my Roots, and a Programming Note.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

 Guys, this week is insanity for us, and I'm running out the door as I type to take the LM skating. Blah. I have so much to write about, but no time. Since we aren't traveling over Thanksgiving or Christmas, would you all mind if I took my holiday break this week? Considering it's already Wednesday, I'm not sure you have a choice ;). 

I won't leave you empty handed. Yesterday, literally on a whim, I decided to go back to being a blonde. Not just any blonde, but a serious blonde. I still feel like I am wearing a wig every time I look in the mirror, but I do love it. Here's a little taste for you all. 

Be back Monday.  I'll let you know if this blonde is having more fun!

A Few Final Things.

Friday, November 8, 2013

 I've decided to forgo the Weekend Links today, since I just posted them on Monday, so instead here are a few things I saw this week that I can't get out of my head! Happy Friday!

This black fireplace is insane (and such an easy update.) Mark my words, I will have this in our next house!


Can you say eyebrows???? The obsession continues... aka why won't mine grow!?!?


I am dying over this woven textile/ dreamcatcher over the bed. I've tried to source it for days now. It's beyond gorgeous!


This mirror from Restoration Hardware is topping my wish list. 


I'm loving this nautical tee tucked in with the red belt. I used to be an anti-tucker, but I have definitely changed my tune over the last year or so! 


New Warby Parker frames with a hit of RED. It's the perfect, updated Sally Jesse Raphael. 


See you all next week!


Thursday, November 7, 2013


This video has been making its way around the Internet, and after watching it I haven't been able to get it out of my mind. I know I am so guilty of a number of these, and admittedly, I am the first to whip out my phone to capture any and every moment with my little ones, which in turn I send to Dad, family members, post to Instagram, Facebook... you know the drill. That's the great thing about technology, it makes it easy to feel connected to those around you, and it has absolutely changed the way we all communicate and stay in touch, but that all comes at a cost and we end up having a closer connection to our phone, than we do to those around us. 

While we might be documenting a memory to share years down the road, we are also documenting the minutia, instead of actually experiencing it. I have some 2,000 pictures and videos on my phone alone, all of just my kids, and probably 90% of that is something I will really never look at again. Don't even get me started on the compulsion to refresh my Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest feeds. I saw on 60 Minutes, that each time you get a new piece of information, your brain lets out a small amount of endorphins, which is why scrolling through feeds is so addictive. I can say there are times I will be looking at my news feed, and it hits me that I just did the exact same thing two minutes ago. What could have possibly changed in two minutes? Nothing. Nothing at all. Yet, there I am, mindlessly doing it. 

I think it's all about finding a personal balance, and for me this is something that has been on my mind for the past few months. I've been trying really hard to leave my phone behind when I know I won't need to be reached, and even when I have it, I've been making it more difficult to reach for on auto pilot by putting it in the back seat, or zipping it into a concealed compartment in my bag. I've also deleted all games, and unnecessary apps, and put a lock on my home screen. I'm this close to deleting Facebook and Pinterest, thereby forcing me to wait until I get home to see my latest "news." When I am home, I try to leave my phone in the charging station, out of reach, with the volume on so I only pick it up when someone is trying to get ahold of me. These are small things, but together they have definitely helped me to decrease my own screen time, and do some very necessary unplugging. 

What about you all? I'd be interested to know your feeling on this, and what you do to avoid the trappings of the smart phone. Isn't that video so powerful? Good stuff. 


Tuesday, November 5, 2013

A little glimpse of what's been happening in our world, the past few weeks. 

(sure mom and dad, you all can sleep in for a few minutes)

Monday Links.

Monday, November 4, 2013


Look at that, it's Monday already. Sorry for the missed post on Friday, I blame the sugar hangover! This year solidified it for me, Halloween has become my absolute favorite holiday. Christmas just can't compete with hay rides, spiked cider, and my kids faces when they running from house to house looking for candy handouts. I wish I could just bottle that joy up! 

Did you all have nice weekend, despite the evilest of days? You know, the day we all get to spend an extra hour with our kids... at 5am? Based on my Facebook feed it seems that those of you without children actually like this dreadful tradition. I find it to be the worst gift, that keeps on giving... for about a month. Grrrrrr.

Over the weekend, we celebrated my mother-in-law's birthday with one of the the best meals we have ever had at a Cambridge institution, and cocktails to follow here. Before you think we were too crazy, let me assure you that we were back home by 9pm. Living on the wild side ;) 

Here are a few fun links from around the web to kick off this cold Monday. 

A $120 room makeover that made me pick my jaw up from off the floor.

On slowing down.

Love this shared room!

A beautiful look for those upcoming holiday parties.

To go with this perfect party dress (at a great price!)

Jenna, timeless Jenna.

Tonight, I'm going to whip up some homemade pizza's and try this fiery recipe out!

Made me laugh!

I've found my inspiration for next year's halloween ball! What a gorgeous head piece!

An adorable snow suit for baby.

... and a much needed new coat for Gray at 40% off!

You had me at Nutella.

I'm jumping on the bandwagon, and starting this tonight. Anyone finished it yet?

A heartwarming story for this chilly day. The fact that the kids decided to do this on their own, gives me hope for the future.

I know I'm all about de-cluttering, but then I see a home like this one, and it just screams cozy. It's such a fine line.

Finally, Noooooooooo and Noooooooo!