Thursday, December 22, 2011

It's My Friday, I'm In Love....With...

Image Source: http://ohhappyday.com/
I love that it incorporates neighborhood / family bonding & recycling.

Smart + fun = awesome.

Image Source: unknown
...this dress.
OMG.  I have finally found my perfect dress for a black tie wedding I have coming up in June.  I already booked an appointed with my dress maker.  This dress party is getting started.  I am not sure if I will do black or red.  Decisions, decisions!! (At least they are fun ones!!) 


Image Source: unknown
....these flowers.
These bunches remind me of spring, happiness and our wedding!!

I can hardly believe that its nearly time to start planning our 1 year anniversary. 


....Exhale!!
Lovelies, its official.  My offer letter is signed, sealed, delivered.  My first class is today at 4pm.

 I am a Core Fusion teacher and I am SUPER EXCITED!!!!

With my teaching schedule, family in town, and festivities to partake in, I may or may not be posting between now and next Monday.  So, I wish you all a wonderful, cozy, yummy, very happy Christmas.

xoxox,

L.A.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Feel Good Wednesday - EcoATM

This is the EcoATM located in the Westside Pavaillion in Westwood.

It is a super awesome machine that gives you cash for your old electronics. Awesome right? (Especially to a girl who left her Iphone 3 at the Apple Store when I upgraded because I didn't know I could get cash back!)

My super sweet huz, Chris, took these pictures for me when he deposited his phone into the machine last weekend.


It works like this:

You take your old phone to the machine and touch the screen to begin.  Follow directions!


Then, you place your phone in the little box for it to be scanned (the external part of the phone) for damage.

The machine will then ask you to plug your phone in to be internally scanned!

Then, you get your result!

Chris got $41 for his two year old, refurbished Iphone 3!  I think that's pretty amazing, right?!

Here is the EcoATM website!  Check to see if there is a location near you!  You know you want to make money and recycle. :)

xoxoxo,

L.A.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Avocado = Cheese


Today is the 10 weekaversary of my divorce from cheese; all dairy, actually.

I didn't foresee my relationship with cheese ending.  But, when I found out that I am allergic to dairy and by ceasing consumption I could end my coughing, super phlegmy, general heavy and tired feeling that dairy leaves me with, I realized that a break up was best for both of us.

I LOVE cheese, so the thought of leaving it behind was sad at first. The only thing that got me through the first rough nights was my discovery of avocado.

Living in California has brought avocado to the fore front of my attention.  I have grown accustom to the concept of adding avocado or guacamole to pretty much any dish when ordering out.  However, losing cheese (and my search for some sort of replacement) led me to realize that avocado can be eaten alone as a snack! Score!!  And, its delicious and super good for you! Double score!!

When I come home from work and need an afternoon snack, I now turn to 1/2 an avocado (topped with a little pepper) and crackers instead of cheese and crackers.  Avocado is chalk full of good omega fat and vegetarian protein.  It also has the perfect creamy consistancy to serve as a replacement to cheese. 

Want to know a secret?! Since I discovered that avocado = cheese, I don't even miss cheese!! 

Want to know another secret?  Since I have stopped eating dairy, I have lost 4 pounds!! (Most humans are allergic to dairy and don't even know it!  Its hard for our bodies to process, thus it aides in packing on the pounds!)

I thought I would share my secret with you today as I wave bye-bye to cheese and dairy for the 10th straight week!

xoxox,

Lindsey

P.S. I can still eat a little goat cheese now and then.  So, all is not lost for me at wine and cheese parties.  Thank god!!

P.P.S. I do cheat sometimes (a girl has to have a bite of pizza every one in a while), but I usually regret it.

Monday, December 19, 2011

What I Learned This Weekend - Candles & Korean Spas

I normally learn more over the weekend than I did this past weekend. (Maybe I lacked in the learning department because I was insanely busy or maybe insanely excited that I am now a Core Fusion teacher!!!!)

Anyway, I did learn two new things!

First off, I learned that simple Mason jar candles are the perfect little addition to a holiday gift.

Chris and I got into candle making about this time last year.  Its super fun!  We save all the wax from candles that we burn and then melt it down to make more candles.  We mix and match shades and scents.  Its always a fun experiment.

My above candles turned out a dark pink (possibly from the mass amounts of red wax I had from holiday candles?!).  Thank goodness these little gifts are for girls! hehe.

If you are interested in candle making, check out this kit.  Its a good starter with easy to follow directions.  I think you will be surprised at how easy the process really is! 

Aren't they adorable little presents?!

Secondly, have any of you been to a Korean Spa?!  Holy moly!!

I went on Saturday and WHAT AN AMAZING experience!!!!

I had a body scrub and a massage and will most definitely be going back!

I have family coming in for the holidays this week, so I will be busy prepping for my guests!  I am also teaching my very first Core Fusion class on Thursday.  I love the excitement of the holidays and new adventures!

xoxo & Happy Monday!

Lindsey

Friday, December 16, 2011

It's Friday, I'm In Love...With....



Happy Friday, Lovelies!

I am so excited today because.... guess what?!  After today, I will officially be a Core Fusion teacher!  Woohooo!  (As long as all goes well with my mock class @ 2:30 PST - send positive thoughts my way!!)  Also, I am almost completely done with my holiday shopping (soooo refreshing!). 

I came across the blush above from Nars on A Cup of Jo and completely fell in love!  I am a firm believer that all a girl needs to leave the house is a little lip gloss and rosy cheeks.  Simple, classic, natural beauty.


Image Source: http://topsmalibu.com/index.php
...these poof balls!

In Europe, poof balls are a very popular party game.  Its pretty simple and silly.  You just put the little balls into the tubes and designate someone to blow balls at people! 

I am thinking this might be my contribution to New Year's Eve celebrations!

...this quote.

This quote is my mantra for my mock class today!!!

How can I stumble if its part of my dance?!

I hope you all have a lovely, holiday-joy-filled weekend!  Stay warm and make memories with those you love!

xoxoxo,

L.A.

P.S. Chris and I are doing 12 dates of Christmas this year!  So far we have had sushi, wine tasting with friends, tonight is a shopping and burger excursion, tomorrow is an oyster and martini date (one of our favorites!), and I think on Sunday we will have festive beers or coffee!  I found the idea here! 

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Coffee Bar

Image Source: http://thevintagewren.blogspot.com/

I came across this image of an at-home coffee bar today and just had to share! 

I love the idea of having a designated spot for one of my very favorite drinks!  I know many people with alcohol bars, but no one with a coffee bar.

I feel a trend coming on!

Would you put a coffee bar in your house?!

xoxo,

L.A.



Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Christmas Dinner In a Little Space

That is my dining room. (This was taken before the holiday season, so its much more festive now).

It's little, but cozy and Christopher and I have shared so many special dinners and memories here that we can't help but love every square inch of it (there aren't many inches, hehe).

Our quaint and cozy dining room can pose problems when we try to host dinner parties.  We lack dining space with our seating-for-four round table and we lack space in general in the dining area. 

We hosted Thanksgiving last year and managed to squeeze six excited bodies around little roundy (that's my table's nickname, in case you were wondering).  This year, we are hosting Christmas dinner and are challenged to figure out a way to elegantly serve seven people.

I am very positive that little roundy won't do the job this year, so I am trying to think of other ways to serve my guests.

Possible Serving Ideas:
  • Move our desk into the dining room and use it as the table.  It's long and rectangular, however, I am not sure it will even fit!
  • Move our desk into the living room and move our living room furniture somewhere else in the house, for a living room Christmas dinner.  Our tree is in the living room, so that would be something pretty to look at while we eat.
  • Have an adult table (little roundy) and a kid table (coffee table).  Chris and I would sit at the kid table since we will be the youngest at dinner!  This idea seems to defeat the purpose of all dining and celebrating together, but hey! I'm trying over here.
  • Add a fold out table as an extension to little roundy.  I could get two matching table cloths and have an eclectic mix of tables for dinner.
Any other ideas?!  How do you solve your serving dilemma when you have multiple guests in town?!  I am not going to lie, I have pondered setting up Christmas dinner outside!  We live in SoCal, so if there was ever a place to have Christmas dinner outside, we live in it!

Looking forward to hearing your ideas!

xoxox,

Lindsey

Monday, December 12, 2011

What I Learned This Weekend - Flowers, Champagne, Pictures & Kitchen Cabinets

Happy Monday, lovelies!  I know its the end of the day and I am late with this post, but better late than never (especially on Mondays), right?!

This weekend was filled with two holiday parties, a holiday dinner celebration, sparkles, sparkles, wine and more sparkles.

I did manage to learn four new things this weekend in between the wine and sparkles.

First, flowers last longer when they are in a humid place.  (This is my theory, not a fact, mind you.)

See my roses above? Those are nine days old!!! Seriously?!  I was pondering how its possible that they lasted so long and then I realized that I placed them in the bathroom.  Is it possible that the humid air is giving them a longer life?! If you know the answer to this question, let me know (ahemmm Lauryl Lane).


Secondly, did you know that champagne is made from two red grapes and one white?  I would have never guessed! 

Speaking of champagne...what is your favorite champagne?!  Do you prefer champagne, sparking wine, blanc de blanc, rose?

Mine is Billiecart Salmon.  It doesn't leave that champagne-bad-breath or a hang over! Holla!

 Thirdly, I learned that being in front of the camera isn't soooooo bad. (Especially when you make AUTOMATIC friends with the photographer.) 

Side note: I had to have a few shots taken in order to pick out a picture for the Exhale website (my bio and picture are up on the site now, meaning that I am really going to be a Core Fusion teacher soooooooo soon!!!)

Anyway, I thought I would share the amazing work that Shannon Lee did for me.  She is too good to not share.

Lastly, this weekend I learned that kitchen cabinets can be a pretty place to hang your holiday cards!  A little ribbon, some paperclips - why not put them in a place where you can enjoy the beauty?!

I just LOVE when holiday cards start to come in.  I love the joy and beauty they bring to my home.  (And, let's be honest, I love that people remember Christopher and I during this oh so special season.)

xoxox,

L.A.

Friday, December 9, 2011

It's Friday, I'm In Love....With...



Image Source: unknown


...white tattoos

Okay, so maybe I am 10 years behind on the white tattoo trend.  I don't care!  I have discovered you now, white tattoo, and since I came across the picture above, I can't get you off my mind!!

Image Source: beautifulcliche.tumblr.com
..this dress.

I nearly dropped dead when I saw this picture.  It is everything I could ever ask for in a wedding dress.  Lace, satin, form fitting, with-sleeves.....eeeeekkkkk!!! I will find or have this made for a vow renew in the future.  Oh, yes I will! 

Image Source: instagram.heuoku.com
...this quote.

Lovelies, the above quote sums up my life recently.  I feel like I am juggling 16 balls at once! I thought I would share this with you because I am sure I am not the only one feeling over worked and over whelmed right now.  When you feel chaos this holiday season (or in life, in general), think about this!  It's my new mantra!

What is on your agenda for the weekend?  Holiday parties?! Holiday decorating?  Baking? Or maybe you are a lucky one with some down time?!  Whatever it is that you are doing, I hope you take some time for you and to take a breath and relax! (Maybe, I should take my own advice?!  Inhale. Pause. Exhale.)

xoxo,

Lindsey

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Feel Good Wednesday - Savasana Soundtrack

Image Source: yoga-geek.com
Good morning, lovelies!  Guess what?!  I am so close to finishing my Core Fusion Teacher Training that I am now working on my savasana play list!  I don't know about you, but I LOVE savasana and am pumped to finally be at this section of class. 

Is there anything like the peace, calm, and gratitude you feel as you melt into the mat after a long and thoughtful practice?!

I thought I would share a few songs from my play list that you can maybe include in your home practice or cool down play list.

A Case of You - Joni Mitchell
Adele - Home Again
This I Know - Sam & Ruby
Back To You - John Mayer
All I Want Is You - Tristan Prettyman
Hello - Tristan Prettyman

xoxo,

Lindsey


Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Guest Key Ring

Image Source: Sunset Magazine

I pride myself on being a good (striving for GREAT) hostess during parties, but even more so when I have dear friends or family staying in my home.  Its my belief that the details make or break any experience, so I try to be as detailed oriented as possible when transforming our second bedroom (office / craft room) into a guest oasis.

I have always been on top of the obvious when it comes to the guest room, providing a covered glass of water, fresh flowers, a welcome note (I actually always give a small gift with a Santa Monica twist), map of the area, etc.  But, I am also always looking for new ways to make my guests feel even more welcome. 

When I saw the above guest key ring in a great article in this month's issue of Sunset Magazine, I just had to share it!  How adorable?!

When I am a guest in someone's home, my worst fear is losing their house key.  So, I am sure my guests feel the same.  How could you possible lose the keys when they are attached to this adorable ring?!

Do you have special ways that you welcome your guests? (I would love to provide guest robes and slippers, but I think Chris would have something to say about purchases like that!)

xoxo,
Lindsey

Monday, December 5, 2011

What I Learned This Weekend - Holidays are Pretty!

Happy Monday, lovelies! This is going to be a great week, I can feel it!!

This weekend I learned (remembered, really) just how beautiful the holiday season can be.  Not just esthetically, but also the meaningful stuff. 

I started my weekend adventures by snapping the shot above.  I decided to use ornaments to fill a vase for my holiday table centerpiece this year.  I love it!

We had our 3rd annual Silver Bells holiday party on Sunday.  This year, we switched it up by hosting the party at brunch rather than in the evening.  It was a nice change and a big success!

I love having all my very best friends come to mingle and exchange gifts. The chatter, food, fun and gleaming faces really makes my day (okay, my year!).

Since it was a brunch party, I decided to prepare a mimosa bar for our guests.  Easy for me, yummy for them.  Done and done.

I bought these stemless champagne flutes and these stemless wine glasses and have finally solved my lack-of-wine-and-champagne-glasses-at-parties woes.  (And for a super reasonable price!!  Double and!!! they are shipped in small and very well put together boxes that are perfect for storage between events.)


I made little tags to differentiate between juices and water for the mimosa bar.  I didn't know it was possible for bottles and ice to make a pretty picture!  I guess during the holiday season, it is!


This is our little living Christmas tree!! It was delivered Saturday! It is a Leyland Cyprus (we are still thinking about names for it).  Its a baby tree, standing about 5 feet tall, including the pot.  I have to water it every two days and it smells alive and devine!  I have already been talking to it and telling it how beautiful it is and how big and tall I know it will get as the years go on. I know talking to a tree sounds crazy, but this article might make me sound more sane!

My tree design this year consists of musical instruments, old music sheet ornaments, white balls and white and silver ribbon.  I was going for classic and musical.  Like my bow at the top?!  I made it in 10 minutes.  I was impressed myself! hahaha.  Last year, I tried to make a bow for 2 hours, got really mad, threw out the bow mess, and topped the tree with a silly bow tie looking thing. 

I hope you all have a wonderful Monday and super happy week!

xoxo,
L.A.

P.S. Have you decorated your tree yet?!

Friday, December 2, 2011

It's Friday, I'm In Love...With...

 .....Thanksgiving leftover bubble and squeak for two.

The rutabagas were actually super delicious with eggs!

 ...holiday apple pie waiting to be baked.

Guess what, this is the first apple pie I ever made! 

 ..festive table settings.

I reused my candle idea found on this post, but I filled the bottom of the glasses with citrus and squash this time!

Image Source: www.potterybarn.com
...Pottery Barn's gift of the day!

So, I realized during my online holiday shopping this week that Pottery Barn is doing this awesome promotion where every day they are discounting one potential gift!  Yesterday it was cozy throws, today is holiday pillow covers.  I love a good deal and this is a goooooooooood deal a day!

Lovelies, I am soooo excited for this weekend!  Our living Christmas tree is being delivered Saturday morning (by delivery elves! I hope they come dressed up like elves, that would make my day!!), our holiday party is Sunday afternoon, and I am nearly done with my Core Fusion Teacher Training! woooohoooo!  I am heading for a date night with Chris tonight for margaritas and to pick up a dress for holiday parties this year.  Check it out here.  I am so in love with the color and back, I could die.  Hopefully, I will get to a bedroom project involving these before my guests arrive on Sunday.  I will definitely take pics to show you!

What is on your agenda for the weekend?!

xoxoxoxo,

L.A.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Feel Good Wednesday - Conquering Holiday Season Stress

Image Source: sheknows.com
Lovelies, I don't know about you, but my holiday planning (and thus holiday stress) is in full swing right about now.  Gift buying, holiday party planning, outfit buying for holiday parties, house decoration, preparing for the in-laws coming into town...I could go on.  I am sure you could too! I really want to avoid a nervous breakdown like the woman in the picture above, don't you?!

I thought for today's feel good post, I would focus on 5 ways we can all get through the holiday season (which is supposed to be lovely, not stressful) with a little less anxiety!

1) Exercise

You all know what I am about to say, exercise alleviates stress.  Your endorphins pump, you get a chance to be alone during all the craziness.  That 30 minute run or hour long yoga class can be all you need to decompress or prepare to face your day. Exercise, just do it!

2) Do something festive that makes YOU happy

We all have our own favorite holiday activities.  Some people love seeing the new holiday flick,  listening to carols,shopping, baking, ice skating, parties, decorating etc. The point here is no two people have the same ideas about activities that must be done during the holiday season, so don't let your friends, husband, boyfriend, mother, brother, girlfriend or puppy dog dictate how you spend your holiday free time!  Make sure to do at least one activity for you!

3) Spend less, create more

A big stress for many people during this giving season, is the money involved in the giving part.  Here is a hint to make your shopping less stressful - spend less, create more.  There is no better time than the holidays to make handmade, thoughtful, heartfelt gifts.  Look here for ideas!  Show me a person that wouldn't appreciate a handmade gift, and I will delete this point.  You won't find one.  A $10 handmade cookie mix will be just as well received as Kate Spade earrings. (By the way, aren't these adorable?!).  Everyone gets what the holidays are about - the thought of giving not the price tag.

4) Get organized!

I think this one is pretty obvious, but you never know!  With gifts to by, food to cook, a house decorate and get prepared for guests, parties to go too, outfits to plan for said parties to go too, its easily to get overwhelmed.  Solution = make lists. Make lists upon lists upon lists.

If you aren't a list person, do whatever your method is for organization. But, I would highly suggest at least breaking down the categories: food, rooms to prepare, gifts to buy, etc.

Interesting Lindsey note: I actually plan my gift-giving by tearing out magazine pages, clippings etc. and then post-noting who the pages / gifts are for.  I have little stacks all over my desk of gift clippings!  I am very visual, so these help me when I am out and about shopping.  I can actually visualise who is getting the throw blanket, electronic holding cases, etc.  I also have a master gift list, so I don't forget people!

5) Navigate the Family Drama

No one wants to admit it, but we all know its true.  Holiday family gatherings = holiday family drama.  Maybe Aunt Maggie drinks to much whisky and then spits angsty comments to Uncle Rob about how she hates his wife.  Maybe Mom and Dad are still not over the big fight from 10 years ago and year after year, the subject comes up over turkey and gravy.  Maybe you and your sister can not seem to get past the fact that in 1991 you received Malibu barbie and she received regular barbie - why would parents do such a thing?! (we all know the comparison conversation this leads too).  Maybe your brother-in-law refuses to accept any new traditions you bring to the family table.

Point here, when the family comes in, the drama comes up.

I am no expert on family relationships, but I think this article might help you navigate many situations you may encounter.

Am I missing other stresses, lovelies?  What bugs you during the holidays?  How do you cope with the stress involved?  I'm so curious.

Have a lovely Wednesday!

xoxo,

Lindsey


Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Spiced Pumpkin Cheesecake

I was fully prepared to make these Pumpkin Pie cupcakes for Thanksgiving this year until I heard the recipe for Spiced Pumpkin Cheesecake on NPR while driving home from work last Wednesday.  The flavors seemed so delicious (and Chris's favorite dessert is cheesecake) that I just had to scrape the cupcake plan and try this recipe out.  I am SOOOOO glad I did.

I decided to use cinnamon graham crackers for my crust rather than regular = great decision!! Don't the crust ingredients look delicious in the processor?!

After the crust was made, it was time to start on the filling.  I remembered to take my cream cheese out of the fridge to let it soften before mixing it up (makes it so much easier!).

I think manhandling the pumpkin was my favorite part of this recipe.  Because pumpkin naturally has moisture and moisture doesn't help hold the cheesecake filling together, you de-moisturize the pumpkin before adding it to the mixing bowl. 

The first step in this process is to lay out a few layers of paper towels onto a cookie sheet.

 Then, you scrape out the pumpkin on the paper towels,

 and begin to pat out the moisture.

I was shocked at how full of moisture my pumpkin was!


Once the pumpkin and cream cheese and other ingredients were in the bowl, I manually (because I don't have the space for a big, awesome paddle mixer) mixed the cream cheese, pumpkin other ingredients together. The eggs came last.




This is my Spiced Pumpkin cheese cake!  It looked so pretty and Thanksgiving-like out on a plate because the crust is a dark brown and the inside is beautiful pumpkin orange.  Look here for a side view!

Here is the detailed recipe (adapted from NPR):

Crust:
9 whole cinnamon graham crackers, broken into rough pieces
3 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon cloves
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Filling:
1 1/3 cups sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 (15 ounce) can of unsweetened pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix!)
1 1/2 pounds cream cheese, softened and cut into 1 inch chunks
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon lemon juice
5 large eggs
1 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted


For the crust:
Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 325 degrees. Pulse crackers, sugar, ginger, cinnamon, and cloves in food processor until crackers are finely ground, about 15 pulses. Transfer crumbs to medium bowl, drizzle with melted butter, and mix with rubber spatula until evenly moistened. Empty crumbs into 9-inch spring form pan and, using bottom of dry measuring cup, press crumbs firmly and evenly into pan bottom, keeping sides as clean as possible. Bake crust until fragrant and browned around edges, about 15 minutes. Let crust cool completely on wire rack, about 30 minutes. When cool, wrap outside of pan with two 18-inch square pieces heavy-duty aluminum foil and set spring form pan in roasting pan. Bring kettle of water too boil.

For the filling:
Whisk sugar, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, allspice, and salt in small bowl; set aside. Line baking sheet with triple layer of paper towels.  Spread pumpkin on paper towels in roughly even layer and pat puree with several layers of paper towels to wick away moisture.

In large mixing bowl, mix cream cheese until broken up and slightly softened.  Scrape down bowl, then beat in sugar mixture in 3 additions until combined, scraping down bowl after each addition. Add pumpkin, vanilla, and lemon juice and mix until combined, scrape down bowl. Add eggs, one at a time and beat until incorporated.  Add heavy cream and beat until combined,  Give one final stir at the end.

Being careful not to disturb basked crust, brunch inside of pan with melted butter.  pour filling into prepared pan and smooth top with rubber spatula. Set roasting pan on oven rack and pour enough boiling water into roasting pan to come about halfway up the sides of spring form pan. Bake cake until center is slightly wobbly when pan is shaken, about 1 1/2 hours. Set roasting pan on wire rack then run pairing knife around cake.  Let cake cool in roasting pan until water is just warm, about 45 minutes. Remove spring form pan from water bath, discard foil, and set on wire rack; continue to let cool until barely warm, about 3 hours. Warp with plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled.

xoxo,
L.A.

Monday, November 28, 2011

What I Learned This Weekend - Peace, Light, and Food

Happy Monday, lovelies!  I hope you all had a restful long weekend.  I know I did!  I spent my time cooking, playing with Chris, beginning to decorate for Christmas (I am all set except the tree which arrives on Saturday - I can't wait!), and watching movies!

So, the first thing I learned this long weekend is that wreaths don't have to be frilly to be meaningful.  I think the wreath on my front door has tons of meaning, beauty, and was super simple to make.  What do you think?!


 I also learned that winter light is simply breathtaking!

This picture was taken in the Exhale Spa studio.  The light came through the window and shone onto the carpet at about 3pm.  This image lasted only 1-2 minutes before it changed because of shadows.

What a nice reminder to enjoy winter light and exhale!

Much to my delight and surprise, I learned that pumpkin cheesecake is in fact MORE delicious than pumpkin pie!  Don't believe me?  I am posting the recipe tomorrow!  Get excited!

Lastly, I learned this weekend that herbs tied with a pretty bow can be quite the lovely hostess gift, or hostess gift garnishment.  Don't you think?!

Wishing you a lovely week full of holiday cheer!

xoxo,

L.A.


Tuesday, November 22, 2011

All I Want For Christmas Is a Solution To This Mess!

This is my jewelry box.  As you can see, its a mess.

I have been unreasonably attached this jewelry box since I was in high school.  It survived four years in the Tri Delta house, a cross country move to Los Angeles, and multiple apartment moves since then.

I have not only (very obviously) outgrown my childhood jewelry box, but it also has no place in my bedroom.

See how it randomly sits on the floor in the closet?  It's in the way of my shoes...you KNOW that means I have a problem with it.

I am ranting about this jewelry box to you all because I am looking for solutions.  I think its time for me to part with it, but I need other options for my jewelry, perfume, etc.

What do you do?  Do you have a bigger, real piece of furniture jewelry box?  Do you have drawers dedicated to jewelry in your dresser?  How do you remember what you have if it is tucked away nice and neat?

Here are some out in the open options I like:

Knob and Handle Jewelry Holders
Standing Necklace and Bracelet Holders - where do I find those?
Hanging Frames as Jewelry Holders
Cutlery Tray Jewelry Holder

Help me, lovelies!  All I want for Christmas is my jewelry to be easily found, worn, and not sitting on my floor blocking my shoes!

xoxo,

Lindsey

Monday, November 21, 2011

What I Learned This Weekend - Root Veggies, Apples & Home Accessories

Happy Monday, lovelies!  I just finished my Christmas blend, there is a crispness to the air that tells me the holidays are really here, and its a short week = yippie!!  Aren't you excited, too?!

So, the first thing I learned this weekend is that root vegetables are numerous and very similar looking!  I starred at the pile of Horseradish root and a Rutabaga at Whole Foods for about 10 minutes this weekend until I finally figured out which was which!  (Don't make fun of me, but I also confused fennel and leek a few weeks back!  Whoops!)

We are making two small game hens with root vegetables as the center of our Thanksgiving feast this year, thus the need for Rutabaga.  Chris and I will be celebrating Thanksgiving just-the-two-of-us style, so making a whole Turkey seemed a little silly.  We will be using a version of this Tom Keller recipe to make our hens and veggies, in case you are curious.  Our menu also includes garlic smashed potatoes, a cranberry salad, and homemade dinner rolls (my first time trying to make them from scratch!).  I am most excited for the Pumpkin Pie cupcakes I'm making as dessert! (I think Chris is more excited for his apple pie).

The second thing I learned this weekend is that simply changing up the accessories in the rooms in your home can bring a whole new feeling and excitement to the room! Bonus, using accessories you already own  = spending little to no money!

Since I added my lovely pomegranate drawing to my bedroom, I have wanted to change up everything else sitting on my dresser.  I added our A (used to sit in the living room), a beautiful vase (wedding gift from a dear friend) filled with purple and red wild flowers (another living room piece), and moved around other existing dresser items, Viloa! I now have a new design and love for the space!

The final thing I learned this weekend is that apples really make me happy!

Since I have an apple pie on my Thanksgiving dessert list, I had to buy a ton of apples this weekend.  They add a bit of fall fun to my citrus bowl and also add a smile to my face. Win-win situation!

I hope you have a fantastic short week and I'm curious, what is on your Thanksgiving menu?!

xoxo,

L.A.

Friday, November 18, 2011

It's Friday, I'm In Love...With...

Image Source: westelm.com
 ...this plate to polish off my Christmas dinner table setting.

It's official.  I am in full holiday season mode....AND so is the rest of the world.  Here is my proof:  the tree and ice skating rink are up on the Santa Monica promenade, my very favorite easy listening  radio station has started playing Christmas music non-stop every night after 7pm, and my Living Christmas Tree will be delivered two weeks from Saturday.  YAY!

I am going with a traditional / playful setting this year.  Crisp, clean colors mixed with fun patterns.  What do you think?!


 ...these sunglasses!!!
I am currently coping with the fact that I have managed to lose my second pair of Ray Bans this year. :(  So, I decided that I would replace them with something cheaper, but totally stylin.  Isn't it amazing how its the $5 sunglasses that you manage to keep for 10 years.  Let's hope these beauties stay with me! (They were only $5!!)

...the perfect shade of nudish-pink, shimmery lipstick for the holiday party season.

Don't you think?!

Image Source: singlemindedwomen.com
...spiked holiday cocktails.

The annual holiday party date is set.  Invites are sent.  It's time to start planning the food.  Yippie!

What are your plans for the weekend, my lovelies?  Starting your holiday shopping?  Practicing your cooking skills for Thursday?  Packing for Thanksgiving travels?

Whatever you do, take time to relax and breathe in the sweet smell of holiday season air.

xoxo,

L.A.