Thursday, May 29, 2014

I'm two hours from boarding a plane to New Orleans with my two best girls. I feel like I just won an Oscar and have about 100 people to thank for making this happen. FOUR child free days in one of my favorite cities?!?! Even the monsoon heading its way can't keep me down!!!

Have a wonderful weekend, I know I will!!!! ;)

Weekend Links.

Friday, May 23, 2014

the LM and I at his Kindergarten play last week

Happy Friday! I cannot believe it is already Memorial Day weekend! What the what!!! Around here you wouldn't know it because its cold and rainy (per the usual) but we are promised some sun shortly, and I plan on holding someone accountable if it doesn't pan out. Who? I'm not sure, but c'mon, it's almost June, can't we get a break? Besides complaining about the weather (man, I really am getting old) we have a low key weekend with the kiddos planned. Tonight we are heading to a play date at a friend's house, and tomorrow, I'm taking the LM and his buddy skating and then we are having dinner at my new favorite place in town. Sunday, the boys and I are going to a sibling class at their favorite play center and I'm hoping it will be warm enough for the beach on Monday, but after shivering one too many times, I'm not counting on anything until the day of!

I hope whatever your plans are, that you have a wonderful, long weekend! Here are a few fun links from around the web to get this party started!

Should you rent or buy? The answer isn't so obvious in some parts of the country.

The best new Instagram account. By the way, I always eat what I post!!!

I'm obsessed with these shoes, thanks to this post by Garance. A special thanks to my SIL for the tip!

What you learn in your 40's. This actually makes me want to get older, faster!

Woah! Paris went an got itself a pool. Can we all be beamed there right now?

Okay, so I would NEVER spend this kind of money for a pair of Birkenstocks, but I have to admit these sure are pretty.

Because one can never have too much clean air, or plants!!!

THIS!!! Is happening at our house Sunday night. A perfect reason to survive the weekend.

I am absolutely not allowed to buy another pair of jeans as long as I live, but for those of you who are, these are about as good as it gets... and they are on sale!

I'm not a fan of the furnishings, but I absolutely love EVERYTHING else about this kitchen renovation. Wait until you see the before! Not only are there touches of black everywhere, but the white and wood combo is sooooo good. Standing ovation for these guys.

The perfect formula for weekend Spring/ Memorial Day dressing. Denim cutoffs + a striped T + a blazer + sunglasses. It's that easy! (second pic from top)

How cute is this shower? I absolutely love the fruit stamps!!

For the long weekend, 24 mind blowing documentaries to watch on Netflix. (This article links to the fist 12)

The future of blogging? I think about this daily, especially when it comes to my own blog. Do you write what people want? What you want? Is there even room outside the mold? All things to ponder.

Boston now has its own mini Legoland! I'm pretty sure we will be spending every weekend here, for the next 5 years!

Finally, for the three of you out there who 1) care, and 2) don't know this, Season 3 of Scandal is now on Netflix. I actually yelped outloud with glee when my sister texted me this. 

Black vs White.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

 Right now, I would say that our home is about 95 percent "done."  Sure, there are things on my never ending list, a light here, a rug there, and eventually the guest room to finish when we decide to jump off the cliff and put the boys together, but in reality if I never brought another thing in this space, I would be more than content with my surroundings.

There is however, one thing I'm dying to do in our house, but I think to do it right I either need to hire someone awesome (read expensive) to do the work or really commit and do the whole thing myself.   In short, I want to re-paint my whole house.

 Ugh.  Okay, not the whole house, but most of it.  Last year, due to a flood in our bottom level, we had my room, and the boys' room re-painted, and prior to that I painted the master bathroom, and the nursery.  Those rooms I LOVE.  What I don't love is the other 1000 square feet, which is essentially all of our living space, and with 12 foot ceilings, that's a lot of paint to look at every day, when it's not your ideal color.  Basically, the color on the walls is the "tan" that comes with every new home, and the doors and moldings are your basic white (a too shiny white) but a white all the same.  Back when we first moved in, I was so unhappy with the craftsmanship from the developer's painters, that I actually repainted the whole space myself, making a mistake I am now kicking myself for which was painting over them in the exact same color.  Now, some 6 year later, I still hate the color and having raised two boys in here there are definitely some scuffs on every wall that I could do without.  The problem is it's not really that bad, and the boys still have a lot of growing up to do, so I'm not sure I can justify the cost of a full paint job, when I know it will probably need to be done in another 5 years.  That being said, paint really is the cheapest way to change your space, and I know that I will love this place a thousand times more if I slap a few coats on the walls.  Therein lies the dilemma. 

The main issue is I don't quite know what I want to do in the space.  If I did, honestly I'd probably be on top of a ladder right now, rather than typing this.  What I really want to do it paint the walls white and all the moldings and doors black.  I KNOW it would look incredible, but I'm not sure how it would work with our current furnishings which are very blue, and the decor which is really bright.  Part of me thinks I am better off just going floor to ceiling white, which will really brighten up everything!  Also, if I went white on white, I could definitely handle the space on my own, but I can't help wonder if it would be just taking the easy way out like last time, and then two years from now will I be itching for black moulding? 

What do you all think? 




I feel like there is some Sophie's choice going on here!  Out of all these pictures, I have to say our home as it is probably is closest to the top picture, which is what makes me want to go black, but you can't beat the clean and simple look of the white on white.  I'm thinking maybe I will just paint all the walls white first (myself) and then if I really think the black is the way to go, hire a professional to come in an do the moulding and doors which is the tricky part anyway. 

What do you all prefer? Do you think you would tire of the black? I'd love your opinion!

A Simple (and Special) End of the year Teacher Gift.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

 Do you all do end of the year teacher gifts at your school?  At both boys' schools they do a cash collection (which I'm sure is what the teacher's really want) and aside from that I usually try to do a little something, to let them know just how much they meant to us.  This year, I am beyond grateful for the Kindergarten teachers in the LM's class and I wanted to give them something that would be sentimental, but also a little useful.  While at Ikea the other day, I saw these orchids that came in these simple little pots and had an idea!  I remembered that you could write on a ceramic mug with a sharpie, and then bake it to make it last forever, so I followed the same process with these cups (obviously taking the flowers out first) and the end result was so easy and sweet, I figured I'd share!

For these I used a gold sharpie, but certainly you could have the kids write or color them however you would like, and then you bake the base at 350 for 30 minutes.  I figure once the flower dies, they can use the base for pencils or loose items on their desk and hopefully smile knowing how loved they are by our family. 

Now, I just have to make sure to keep these guys alive for the next two weeks!

An Inspired Affair.

Monday, May 19, 2014

 Have you all seen the STUNNING pictures from Poppy Delevingne's weekend wedding?  If you haven't then your eyes are in for a real treat!  Since I've been helping my little sister plan her wedding, I can definitely say my interest in this type of events has peaked, but I've been somewhat disappointed in a lot of inspiration that is out there.  Sure, most of it is couple centered, and I get that everyone has different taste, but lately what's been turning me off is just how over the top some of these events can be.  It's like people hear the word wedding, and they try to add in everything but the kitchen sink as far as decorations, favors, table settings, menus...etc.  I don't know about you all, but as a guest, the most memorable weddings that I've been to are the ones that are simple, with great drinks, good company, and a killer band.  Now, since I'm not a supermodel, nor am I friends with one, sadly, I was not invited to this wedding and cannot attest to the perfection of the reception, but if these wedding shots are any indicator, you can bet it was a beautiful, understated affair.  You can bet we're taking copious notes from this one! 

Obviously we all can't get married in custom couture Chanel, but I have to say that this dress is probably the most beautiful I've ever seen.  EVER.  The cap sleeves, the detail, the structured bodice and flowy skirt, all so so so beautiful.  I also love how she wore her hair down, and kept everything so white, from the flowers to the bridesmaid dresses.  Whoever thought to add that subtle smokey eye is genius, and I can assure you I'll be pushing for some of this at my sister's wedding. Of course, we can't leave out those darling flower girls, and her husband looks so dapper in that gray suit and tails. I'll take one of everything ;)

(Photos via Who What Wear)

P.S. You can follow our wedding board on Pinterest if you'd like to follow along with our wedding prep.

Drink Your Vegetables.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

I've mentioned here before that I typically eat a very good dinner at the end of each day. The rest of the day, well, not so much.  For breakfast, I'll have an almond milk latte, a banana and either a piece of wheat toast or a bar on my way out the door, and lunch is typically leftovers from the night before, or whatever the kids are heaving (read a PBJ.)  When Gray is in school, two afternoons a week, I'll grab a salad or soup out, and wednesday's are always reserved for sushi with my girlfriend.  While I definitely take in enough calories, and am eating whole foods that can be described as healthy(ish) it's clear that something is most definitely lacking from my daily diet; vegetables.  I know, right, a vegetarian not eating enough vegetables, we've all heard this one before.  At night I try to make up for what I missed in the day, but I have to say it is really, really, hard to eat more than 4-5 servings of veggies in one meal. Our guinea pig can do it. I cannot. I used to think five servings a day was enough, but with the most recent recommendations being that we should try to get nine servings of vegetables a day, I started to look for an easy way to get more greens in my daytime routine, while still allowing me to eat on the run. 

Enter Macro Greens.  For less than 1$ a day, you can get 5 servings of fruit and veggies out of one little scoop of this green enriched powder that surpasses those found in raw veggies.  You can read all about it here, but I have to say that after a month making smoothies with this, I'm sold.  I'm not going to lie, on its own the powder tastes awful, and they say it's tolerable mixed in a glass of juice, but after one sip I couldn't keep going.  In a smoothie, however, you can't even taste it, and when made with fruit, you hit your nine servings in one drink! 

I don't make the same one each time, mixing it up with whatever produce that we have that is going bad, but as the base I always use about a cup of unsweetened almond milk, and a handful of frozen berries.  The berries really mask the flavor of the greens, and of course, are nutritious on their own, so it's a win/ win.  After that, I'll throw in a slash of orange juice, banana, avocado, or apple, and in the end it always tastes pretty damn good. Or at least I'm telling myself that. 

The only downside is that it is a lot of fiber in one sitting, and there is no real way to say this nicely, but you will want a bathroom close by. I've found that if I drink half in the morning, and freeze the rest until afternoon, my body tolerates it better. I'm not sure if this is a positive or negative side effect, but just be sure not to down this on a cross country road trip, if you get my drift. ;)

One drink. 8-9 servings of vegetables a day? Yes, it really is that easy.  If any of you try it, please, please, please let me know what other concoctions you come up with.  This powder is pretty much a staple for me now, so I'd love to try out some tested recipes!

Flower Power.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

I don't know if it's the fact that for the past two days we have had the most beautiful Spring-like weather, or if it's just my personal style evolving, but lately, and unexpectedly, I've been finding myself drawn to florals in homes.  Of course, by "drawn to" I mean completely obsessed with, and by "completely obsessed with" I mean trying to find a way to incorporate a statement piece in my home, like yesterday.  It all started when I cam across this stunning sofa/ottoman set from Anthropologie and found myself devastated when I saw that that ottoman only comes in extra large.  Tears people, tears.  Just look at this beauty!!! That is a statement piece, a statement that I would happily make day in and day out. 

Now, as luck would have it, I can't seem to get the idea of a floral ottoman out of my head, and every fabric I find is a little more modern, or tribal, than I'm looking for.  Now, I'm not talking your grandmother's floral (wait, now that I think about it, I might be!) but just the perfect "pop" of a delicate flower. I'm finding through my search, that I like florals best when paired with a more modern, or unexpected palette, and it seems like the placement is the key. While I continue to scour the internet for my perfect piece, I'll leave you with some insanely perfect uses of florals in the home. Each one more jaw dropping than the next. 

That is what you call some serious Flower Power. 

The Week of Weeks.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

 The kids and I got back from NYC late Sunday night, and after having an epic weekend, which may or may not included me dancing on a booth until 3am (who am I ????) we drove straight in to what is going to be the week of weeks. My little sister is graduating on Thursday, and my parents are in town to celebrate. I'm having a little party in her honor, with her fiancĂ©'s family, which will be followed by a little party in my honor on Friday, for my 35th (eek) birthday. In between all the celebrations, there is a special friends day at one of the boy's schools, doctor appointments, playdates,  Mother's day events, and oh, my husband is out of town for all of it. For a family that rarely goes out, this is a big week for us all, but one that is going to be incredibly special and welcome. I know there won't be time to get back here until next week, so for now I'm signing off. I wish you all a happy, and sunny week ahead. A big congratulations to all of you graduating as well! xoxo