It rained all weekend.
I actually really liked it. We slept in late, then stayed in our pajamas even later and it actually felt a little like Christmas! Stone and I shared some great meals with friends, wrapped presents, finally got our Christmas cards sent out, and added to our list of Christmas movies we have now watched this season. I also made Spritz cookies for the first time ever. They are so fun and turn out really great with not too much effort, which I like :) You have to have a special gun-like thing to make the designs, which, you can buy here. We are giving to the cookies to friends in decorated chinese to-go boxes! Anyway, here is the recipe from Stone's mom:
1 cup butter
2/3 cup sugar
3 egg yolks
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 cups sifted flour
Work into the dough with hands.
Press cookies onto ungreased baking sheet, bake at 325 until set, but not brown (about 8 minutes). Enjoy!
Okay, so this took a long while for me to compile some of my favorite things into one little gift guide... but, here it is. I know it is not too late either, because, lets be honest, your special someone is probably rushing right now to figure out what to put under the tree for you. Hint, hint guys, I am sure your lady will love any of the things below (I hope you do!). Enjoy!
Row three: 2011 Planner
AND I even went through some of my favorite daily reads to gather their gift guides just for you. All lovely things any girl would enjoy opening up on Christmas morning!
This week (the 14th) was my mother-in-law's birthday! We video chatted with the whole family last night, they were together celebrating her birthday as well as my brother-in-law's graduation (Congratulations Brady!). We hope you had a wonderful birthday and we were sad to have missed it, but cannot wait to be there for Christmas!
This year I chose to simply use craft paper and bakers twine to wrap our Christmas presents. One, because we are traveling with them and any pretty bow I make is going to be smashed anyway. Two, because, let's be honest what people really are interested in is whats inside. And, three, because I think simple can be pretty too!
I never thought I would say this... but, I wish it was snowing outside right now instead of sunny and 75 degrees. It is just that it's Christmas, and does not quite feel like it. I am dreaming of snow, fireplaces and warm drinks. Today I was thinking back to an article I read forever ago about a town in Colorado that you can rent... literally. There are 12 cabins, a spa, hot springs, dining hall, chapel (which, would make for an incredible wedding weekend!) and store. How fun would that be? You could invite all of your closest friends to this secluded little mountain town for the perfect winter weekend and have it be all yours! I mean, it would sound more reasonable if I had a money tree in the backyard, but a girl can dream right? The town rental even includes meals for 42 people each day. So lovely.
Go here to dream more. xo.
I am always curious to see people's homes. I think that they tell a lot about a person, not necessarily where they live, but how they live and what sort of things they surround themselves with. I wonder if someone were to walk into our little house without knowing us and try to profile us as a couple what they would come up with :) A lot of our things are hand me downs that we have thrown together, but I truly like our quirky and creative style. We are not grown ups just yet and our home is not pretending to be (I think we have a bit of time to transfer into that stage).
Well, a while back I found this blog called From Me To You. Of course, I immediately liked the girl (Jamie) because she is a Texan by birth and Texans always seem to get along. Either way, she now lives in New York and is an editorial and fashion photographer. She has been working on a series called 'At Home With' where she goes into various creatives and interesting people's homes and takes photos. I love them. Stone and I have come to realize that some of our favorite engagement shoots have been those where we are at the couple's home and walking in their neighborhood... it is where people are most comfortable and the photos tell a story.
You can see all of her series here. This one is my absolute favorite... can you imagine living here? I love the hot pink touches!
Every morning, especially around this time of year, I wake up to a laundry list of enticing emails from my favorite stores wanting me to Buy! Buy! Buy! Of course, I usually delete them. But, around the holidays, I take extra time in the morning to go through them all and check out the deals that each store has come up with and the new fun products. Kate Spade this morning was especially great, they sent a link to their presents under $75 (and men, it is free shipping AND they will wrap!). Also, they are all small enough to fit into the stocking :) Husband and I made a pact to only get stocking stuffers this year for each other and I appreciate Kate for making it all so easy on him! Go here to see the complete list.
The Weepies is hands down the best concert I have been to, and I have been to a lot. I saw them at a little place in Austin that held no more than 100 people and we sat indian style on the floor in the front row. Pretty great... it felt like they were my aunt and uncle or something just singing to a group of my friends in my living room. Anyway, I have now turned Stone onto them and we are constantly playing their one Christmas song right now. Hope you enjoy!
Well Stone and I had a pretty mellow weekend. Not at all what I thought or wished for it, it just kind of ended up that way. So mellow in fact that, on Saturday, I found myself sitting at home watching Home Alone 2 and making a new Christmas wreath :) I cannot complain about a little down time though, it is good for me. Anyway, we did go on a really great beach bike ride yesterday, in the sunny 80 degree weather (crazy, right?), I even wore my swimsuit!
Hope you all had a fun and Christmassy weekend, we have now watched a total of 8 Christmas movies, we are on a roll and I am loving it!
I thought I would share with you the wreath I made, because it is easy and looks great!
You will need a styrofoam wreath, yarn and some decorative paper.
Double wrap the yarn around the styrofoam wreath (this takes a good while), then cut 1/2 inch to 1 inch strips of paper folding them accordion style. Circle the two ends of paper around and glue them together to make small flowers. Affix to wreath and add a pretty bow! So simple, I have been using mini clothespins to put our Christmas cards onto it. Enjoy!
Hello all. Stone here (Shelby's oh so sweet husband). I thought I would break into her blog and inject a little masculineness. I was thinking that Shel puts all kinds of gift ideas for girls up (which has come in VERY handy when I want to get her a gift), but not a whole bunch for the dudes in those girls lives. So ladies, here are a few of my most desired items for this Christmas season (hint hint Shel). Some are crazy life dreams for if Santa is feeling especially wild (ie. Land Rover Defender), but all are totally bad to the bone (in my humble opinion).
So here they are ... hope you enjoy. The links are below.
Row 3: Vans Era 45 Cali Sneaker
I love these resolution postcards, just a funny little idea to send to friends when 2011 rolls around! Unfortunately I usually have hopes of following the Hi-Res type resolution, but fail and end up in the Low-Res category.
Andy Babb’s 11 Resolutions for 2011 postcard set plays off of the New Year’s resolutions people typically make. Working out more, drinking less, losing weight, you get the idea. Andy illustrated each one, then took it to the next level. On the reverse sides there are two options for carrying out your goal: Hi-Res (high hopes) and Lo-Res (cynical). Via Design Crush
This is the first year for Stone and I to have an Advent Calendar. I love it, because, as you may have read in previous posts I am a fan of making paper chain countdowns and this is quite similar except with our calendar this year we get chocolate each day and who can complain about that? But, I have come to find out that there are so many different things to do for an advent, I have never had one, so I am just used to seeing the ones with edible treats inside to buy at stores. But really, the history of the advent calendar is just to receive a small gift a day leading up to Christmas to add excitement and anticipation for Christmas day. Anyway, I know it is a bit late in the game, but I gathered some of the ideas I have seen recently to share with you, it is only the 8th, you can still start one today! xo.
Have you heard of the artist Dalton Ghetti? Well, I just read about him yesterday, and his extraordinary talent of creating artwork from pencil lead. Think of the crazy amount of patience this would take? In the article it says that all of his pieces that have broken while he was working on them have been put into a box that he calls his 'graveyard collection'. I can imagine that there are a ton in there.
Stone and I were also marveling at how perfect his eyesight must be. It is hard to stare at anything for too long, let alone something as tiny as pencil lead. I think he should do a collection in colored pencils to spice things up a bit :)
Here is a bit of information about him from the article, and you can go here to read more!
Dalton Ghetti is a truly incredible artist. This 49-year-old carpenter from Bridgeport, CT has been carving utterly stunning miniature sculptures, without the aid of a magnifying glass, for more than a quarter of a century. Every amazing piece is carved from the tip of a lead pencil. As a child, he began by carving tree bark, but moved on to other things, like soap to chalk before deciding that graphite was his preferred medium.After so many years and so much practice, this method of sculpting has become second nature to Dalton now, and to do the vast majority of his work, he needs nothing more than a sewing needle, a razor blade, a sculpting knife and a carpenter’s or No. 2 pencil. He says of the art he produces: “The pencil tip is great; it’s like a pure, very homogeneous material. It cuts in the same direction, not like wood, which has a grain. But when I tell people how long it takes, that’s when they don’t believe it. That’s what amazes people more, the patience. Because everything nowadays has to be fast, fast, fast.”
We had a whirlwind of a weekend! With Stone's parents in town and it being one weekend closer to Christmas there was a lot going on. Stone and I loved showing Scoot and Wendy around our new home, cooking with them, going to the beach and just spending time together. Stone got to surf with his dad, which I know they both loved. We also went to the Encinitas Christmas parade one night after grilling pizzas, it was really all families and little ones, and was so fun for us to kind of get a better feel of the community in Encinitas. I also attended a Christmas cookie party, nothing is better than star shaped sugar cookies, colorful frosting and never ending sprinkles :) Scoot and Wendy left yesterday and we were already talking about more things to do with them the next time they are here.
We cannot wait for them to come back!
Hope you had a wonderful weekend as well. xo.
I meant to write a little post for my sister's birthday on Thursday, however, I was sick all day and did not even get on the computer!
Anyway, happy birthday Linds! Hopefully you are getting my present today (which is also a little late... sorry!) and having a fun celebratory weekend. I love you tons and cannot wait to see you.
What are your plans this weekend? Stone and I are so happy to have his parents out here visiting us! We cannot wait to show them around out new home and Stone is dying to get his dad out on some waves. Also, there is the Encinitas Christmas parade this weekend and I hear that it is supposed to be pretty good, hopefully just enough cheese, but not over the top :)
Below are some links to a few Christmas craft ideas. I am going to a craft party this coming week where you pick out your own project and bring your own materials! I am so excited for it, the host sent us some great ideas and I also gathered a few and thought I would share just in case you were in a crafty mood too. xo.
A monogrammed wreath that uses a bit of nature.
Time to tear apart your favorite Christmas book, in the name of design of course!
Ruffles and felt, two of my favorite things.
Gold pom pom holiday garland... love it!
A lovely rope holiday wreath.
A great idea for all of your Christmas cards!
The Holidays are the perfect excuse to wear sparkles, and even layer those sparkles with MORE sparkles. Right? So I found some of my favorite shimmery things of the season and thought I would share them with you. My favorite thing of the group are the bloomers, I would just love some party bloomers :) So, have fun at all of your Christmas parties this season and don't forget to sparkle! Enjoy.
Middle Row: Urban Outfitter Glitter Oxfords, JCrew Starry Night Cardigan, Kate Spade Glitter Emanuelle Clutch
Last Row: TopShop Sequin Boomer Shorts, Kate Spade Pop Rocks Ring, Deborah Lippmann Glitter Polish, Anthropologie Past Echoes Dress
Stone and I love Christmas, and as a fun way to get into the holiday spirit we designed 6 cards that can be customized with your own color, photo and wording! If you are like me and are always a little late getting these things out, then have us do it for you this year.
I know it is hard to see the cards on my blog, so you can email Stone at firstname.lastname@example.org for details and ordering.
I wanted to share some photos from Stone and my Christmas tree excursion! Not quite the same as the last few years cutting down our own tree at Stone's family cabin, but, Home Depot did have a great selection I must say :) We found a nice 7ft tree and I trimmed it so skinny in order to fit in the small allotted space in our apartment (I will have to show you photos soon!). It is a model-type I say... tall and skinny!
My sister-in-law, Kelsey sent me a link to one of Anthropologies latest endeavor. She is always in the know on these kinds of things! These one of a kind books, handmade for Anthro, are so beautiful and would make a wonderful gift for a future novelist.
Below is what Poppytalk had to say about them.
As part of Anthropologie’s holiday line, the US-based chain store commissioned e Bond (a Poppytalk Handmade participant) to make a limited edition series of handmade journals for people who want to write, document or remember. The series, called 1000 Books, will be available this holiday season in four styles exclusively in Anthropologie stores nationwide.
The journals are part of Bond's ‘exposed’ collection of stationery, which deconstructs the book by paring it down to its essential form: boards, binding & paper. Bond then paints and prints directly onto each book, layering them with her love of words, reading and documenting the everyday. While each book is a work of art, Bond hates the idea of them collecting dust on a coffee table. "I would love nothing more than for the books to be written in often, and in whatever way works best in people’s daily lives.”
Inside each book is a hand-numbered bookmark that further illustrates how each journal is one-of-a-kind and was made to be marked up at the owner's whim. In this collaborative spirit, Bond is asking her fellow documenters to share a page from their books, so that the collaboration doesn’t end. Designs can be emailed to roughdraftshares[at]gmail[dot]com and will be featured on Bond's website.
Just found some of Lissie's music this morning and there are so many more videos and songs I want to listen to, I just don't have time before work! She also sings this song with my new fav Ellie Goulding. Enjoy!
This weekend was perfect. Not only was it nice to have 4 days off, but this is always one of my favorite weekends of the year because now the Christmas season is in full swing. Stone and I were so lucky to spend Thanksgiving with our friends Patrick and Lacey and their wonderful family. Lacey and I spent the morning cooking stuffed mushrooms, roasted vegetables and corn casserole... The dishes all turned out incredibly and we topped it off with two pies (one chocolate walnut pie and one fudge pie... so delish).
One of the great things that their family does on Thanksgiving is to go around the room and share what you are thankful for that year. Well, as cheesy as it may sound, it was really special and a tradition that I would love to continue with our family. Stone and I have so much to be thankful for this year, on the top of our list always is our supportive families, our incredible friends, our health, our salvation through Jesus, and we are of course thankful for each other. Beyond that we are so thankful that our transition to California has been easy, we are thankful for the month and a half this year that we lived as roomates with Stone's parents and lastly we are thankful for all of our photo clients and for a successful business.
Back to our weekend...
Stone and I also went and got our Christmas tree! A real tree is definitely a must for me... Christmas just would not be the same without that pine scent. As Stone and I were picking out our tree, we overheard about 3 other couples having the same argument as us... All of the guys wanted to browse in the 3-5ft section and we were all begging for at least a 7ft tree, which I thought was typical and funny. So we have a large tree in our small apartment and even though it is a bit squished, it is perfect. We watched a couple classic Christmas movies while trimming the tree and decorating our place, and it looks great if I do say so myself (I will have to show you photos soon).
Lastly we had Thanksgiving dinner round two with a bunch of friends on Saturday, and who can complain about another dinner of turkey and sweet potatoes?! It was so strange to be able to have a Thanksgiving dinner outside, and it is not dumping snow on us. The jury is still our on how I feel about this, I love the snow, but usually when I am in it I am complaining about it :)
I hope your weekend was just as wonderful, spent with friends and family! xo.
I have to tell you that Stone and I got rid of our cable about 2 weeks ago... which has been completely fine so far. There are so many other options these days and we are happy to save the money. However, I woke up this morning with a terrible thought in my head... "what if I wont be able to watch the Macy's Parade?".
Well, it would have ruined my day completely. I have never missed a parade and I was not about to make today the first time. Thankfully I found it online to watch (whew!), they even have a live chat going too (for all of the diehard fans of course) and it is pretty funny because there are only about 4 people contributing to it.
I hope you are snuggled up in your robe this morning watching the parade too. I now have a loaf of pumpkin bread in the oven and cannot wait to spend the day with Stone and some of our friends filling up on turkey and pie :)
Have a wonderful day. xo.
I have found two shops on Etsy recently that I have wanted to tell you about. The first on I love for gift wrapping this Christmas (and year round) as well as decorating. I think that this garland would be a great addition to your Christmas tree this year or a fun spice to liven up your mantle. Either way, the garland comes in beautiful colors and designs AND to top it all off she is having a big sale! Can't beat it.
The second is a beautiful furniture and textile store that finds all of their fabrics from Asia then creates their one of a kind pieces. Of course, I am in love with all of the pillows and lampshades, but what I am really eyeing is the sette... of course the most expensive thing on the site!