Tuesday, December 28, 2010

espresso yourself

My inbox is getting bombarded with sales, sales, sales, and in addition, what is new for spring!  Yikes.  I know I should embrace this, but not there quite yet.  I am going skiing in two days, so my mind is very far away from strappy sandals.  I am thinking strappy sandals = frostbite at this point.
So, in keeping with the warm and cozy theme, I want to mention a new addition to our house that I am loving--and its not a puppy.  (sorry kids!)  Its our new Nespresso Citiz espresso machine & Aeroccino Plus automatic milk frother that the UPS man, um, I mean Santa brought.
My sister has a cool coffee/espresso maker that is similar and we have thought about getting one for several years.   A demo at Williams Sonoma sealed the deal.  The sleek design meant it would fit in my small 1920's kitchen, and the push button milk steamer/frother makes putting together a nonfat latte in about two minutes at home.  I love the convenient capsules, which are about fifty cents a piece--meaning I can kiss my $4+ a day coffee house habit goodbye.  Although I love my barista down the street, who knows my drink already and gets it going when he spots me, its sadly, time to break up.  An occasional social visit is all I am up for, I mean, we can still be friends, right?  In the meantime, with the money I am saving drinking my latte at home--well, before you know it I will be able to purchase those strappy sandals after all, guilt free.

Monday, December 27, 2010

ipad love

Today is the third day of owning my iPad and I am already feeling the love. Yesterday I joined the masses of people returning unwanted gifts and checking out sales in search of a functional yet fab case for it. It is so slim and lightweight I feared I would drop it and bounce it off the hardwoods. Plus, I want to stick it in my handbag and go. I did spent a bit of time online and read a great article on the coolest iPad accessories in New York Magazine--I recommend checking it out for fun ideas.
At the Mac store I bought the Michael Kors black patent case--it was perfect with its gold interior, full zip, and built in stand on the back.  Plus it matches my Yves Saint Laurent patent Downtown handbag and fits inside it as well.  I also picked up the connector for my camera since I take a lot of photographs with my little portable.  I hear that everyone is getting in on the iPad game--including Louis Vuitton--so look for new low & high end cases, bags & accessories coming out soon.
For spring/summer however, (and my birthday) I have my eye on the Gucci iPad case--who knew there would be a whole new world of accessorizing waiting for me.  Happy surfing.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

all i want for christmas

I love Christmas.  Christmas Eve especially.  I know everyone gets overwhelmed this time of year with all the holiday traditions, requirements etc, but I still love it.  One of my favorite Christmas' ever was just a couple years ago when it snowed in Seattle on Christmas Day--it was so beautiful and made me feel like a kid again back in Montana.
My memories of Christmas growing up are strong ones.  I remember the food, the stockings, the trips to get a tree, the anticipation that something wonderful was going to happen, and thanks to my Mom and Dad, it always did.  It wasn't until years later, when I was in college, that my Mom confessed that for years Christmas was the most difficult time of the year for her.  And no wonder. When she wasn't baking four hundred different things for our house but all our neighbors on the block, she helped out at local charities, cooked giant meals, and was able, with not a lot of money to make four kids and her husband have a magical Christmas each year.  Being a mother myself with two, I am in awe of what she did.
This year has been a challenging one not only for me, but for friends that I care about.  Despite my best efforts for being in the Christmas spirit, yesterday I had had it.  The Christmas carols on the loud speaker in the store were overwhelmingly sad to me, the stores stuffed with too much stuff.  I left and went back to my car and put my head on the steering wheel.  I though of my friend Elizabeth, back in Texas, having just lost her Dad a couple months ago, a friend whose Mom is gravely ill in the hospital, and my friend who told me that he was never going to fall in love again, it was too difficult, too painful.  My Christmas spirit took a nose dive.
After an incredibly bad nights sleep, I decided it was time to think again, about the meaning of Christmas.  And of love, of doing things that are hard, of making the most of what you are given, and of finding again the things that matter, that make you happy.  Things don't always turn out as we have planned, and we don't always get exactly what we want, maybe not the first time anyway.  Or the second.  And I am not talking about that yucky green sweater wrapped under the tree for you.  Take that sweater and return it.  Take that leap of faith, don't waste time wishing you had said something, say it.  Love.
I can tell you that my Mom and Dad still have that loving & giving Christmas spirit, years after the pressures of parenting have gone away.  My Dad is in charge now, of putting out the nativity set and setting Santa out on the porch swing, while my Mom watches from her wheelchair.  I have to say the best gift I have ever received was their love--it helped make me into the happy and confident woman I am today.  And the memories of that wonderful time of the year when I was growing up have stayed with me always.
I may be a little tired of the Christmas carols, (and our petrified tree does get ripped down on the 26th!) but I am certain that what I want for Christmas, is already mine.  Merry Christmas.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

you've got mail

I usually open up my email and am bombarded with shopping websites emails that can be overwhelming to say the least.  I recently spent about three days unsubscribing to many sites, but continued to keep some of my favorites that I use for research, updates, and well, shopping.  One of my favorites has got to be Shopbop, which has a fresh approach to fashion, an eye for new designers, great sales, and an amazing ability to get your package to you quicker than anyone else.  On Sunday, the site sent out a look book on MINKPINK, which is a line that states it is "a look of the moment made affordable".   While I have a complete aversion to people that do not dress their age, I also am not opposed to pushing the envelope a bit.  Something about the line had a bit of an 80's feel to it, but with a modern twist.  I ordered the Basket Case Sweatshirt, together with the Total Eclipse Long Skirt .The skirt is a full length ombre velveteen skirt, and I am loving the super long, and I mean ankle length, skirt.  The sweatshirt is funky, fun, with a very cool construction.  Getting in touch with my inner hippy chick, maybe?  Anyway, if you are looking for a new look for yourself, or a great gift for a fashionable friend I would highly recommend checking out this line.  Now, back to my inbox....

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

party girl

Holiday party time is in full swing (come on mailbox, speak to me) and its time to ditch the Hunter rain boots, dust off your sparkles, and get your party girl self together.  This usually means a host of appointments to make your hair a fabulous main of sleekness or curls, nails gleaming and sporting that beautiful glow you know you weren't rocking on Monday morning.  We all have that crimson lipped goddess hiding inside of us, so do a little out of the box thinking about what to wear to that upcoming bash.
I am going to have to go with feathers this season, as in the BCBGMAXAZRIA luxe feather skirt that I purchased in NYC.  Its the perfect party skirt, and you can punch up the look of all black with red or purple tights. And get out the HIGH heels, lady. If you fear sporting the look of Big Bird, go with something a little more subtle, like the gorgeous Club Monaco Ostrich Feather Clutch, or an even more wallet friendly version of that, try Urban Outfitters Silence and Noise Feather Velvet Clutch at a hard to pass up $38.00.  I really love shopping at Cusp, the more urban chic spin off of luxury retailer Neiman Marcus.  They have a bit more edgy & contemporary look to their merchandise, including a sweet pair of Gorjana "feather" earrings I found there in gold metal.  A little hip, without looking like Cher.
Have a festive & fun holiday--and remember, you are fabulous.  

Monday, December 6, 2010

fuzzy wuzzy

I have an admitted obsession with all things furry.  That includes my collection of vintage coats, the grey sweater pile, a few handbags, scarves, and my Coton du Tulear dog, Henri.  Dog not included, fuzzy = cozy, sexy, and beautiful to me and I feel like I am drawn to it immediately upon entering a store.  It got to be a bit of a joke on my recent trip to NYC, when every time I looked up from my latest furry find, Kacy's sister, Betsy, was looking at me, and laughing.  Guilty as charged.
Last week my friends and I attended a Nordstrom Holiday Shopping Night, and I spotted a Dolce Vita "Leigh" Faux Fur Coat hanging on the end of a rack with a tag showing signs that it had been a return. I picked it up and carried it around with me for about 30 minutes, and was accosted by someone every other minute wanting to know a) where I had found the coat or b) was I purchasing the coat or c) if I wasn't purchasing the coat, I was crazy, but let them know.  I am not sure if that was a marketing ploy but it worked, and I have been wearing it ever since.  I know I have talked about the fur vests that are certainly hot this season, and owning several, I just wanted to add that if Santa Claus is reading this, I covet the Joie Jaleigh Rabbit Fur Vest, and it is on sale now.  Size Medium, please, and there will be a couple extra cookies for you.  I have been a good girl.  So far.