5 Reasons This Week Will Rock: Good-bye, LA. Hello, Santa Cruz!

Collage 3

Good-bye, LA. Hello, Santa Cruz!

Today begins my journey up North for the holidays and I couldn’t be more excited!! My to-do list is done, my bags are packed, and I’m ready for a holiday adventure. This Christmas, I’m spending some time with my boyfriend’s family – after which, we’re extending our Northern California vacay with a trip for two up to Half Moon Bay for little post-holiday R&R for a few days. If that wasn’t enough to look forward to, there are a few other sweet things going on right now that’s simply the icing on the cake.

Here are 5 reasons this week will rock:

1. I dropped off my car at the body shop this morning after smoothly working out the details with my neighbor for the recent damage to my car. My baby is being fixed and will look good as new when I get back into town next week.

2. My second ever full-sized Birchbox purchase, the Coastal Scents® Neutral Mirage Palette Set, (which was FREE thanks to my Birchbox points, hello!?!) arrived at my front door just before leaving town. I wasn’t even expecting it so soon! I’m now looking forward to experimenting with a more dramatic look for the holidays. With 88 shades to choose from, dressing up these brown eyes of mine will be tons of fun!

3. I adore road trips. Particularly, when I get to sit in the passenger’s seat, gaze out the window in the middle of nowhere, and zone out – not a work deadline or bill to think about. When I’m not in the mood to stare blindly out the window, I’ve got my Kindle full of new books to read and like 4 months worth of Glamour to get through. Even better, I get to talk to my favorite person for hours on end.

4. Nothing in the world makes me happier than when I’m traveling or exploring some place new. It’s when I feel the most alive. Our stay in Half Moon Bay where we’ll drive up to Sausalito, and perhaps into San Francisco, is a highlight to our trip that I’m excited about. I’ve never been to Half Moon Bay or Sausalito, but I’ve heard nothing but good things.

5. Duh, Christmas! All week long – you’re around great people, sharing gifts, good conversation, good food, lots of laughs, and too many sweets to count. What more could you ask for?

Oh, I do love this time of year. And unlike last year, I’m not taking a 2 week break from blogging. All That Glitters is going on the road! I hope to share some of my holiday adventures as they unfold. Happy Holidays to you! Have a great week!

love & light,


Stay in Touch: Facebook | Twitter | Bloglovin


Last Minute Gift Guide: For Her

Believe it or not, Christmas is exactly one week away from today. And while all of my holiday gift giving has been squared away this season – there was a time in my life not too long ago (read: last year) where I wasn’t quite so organized and would wait until the last minute to think about what to buy for particular people in my life. Admittedly, part of the pressure is off this year. Aside from a few small gifts to hand out on Christmas morning, my boyfriend and I made a conscious decision not to exchange presents this year. Instead, we decided to use the money to jointly fund a short vacation just after Christmas, which I’m very much looking forward to – more than anything under the tree.

However, I know there are those out there looking for a little inspiration for ideas on what to get the lady, sister, mother, or BFF in your life. I’m here to help. Here’s a last minute gift guide for her. If Santa dropped off any of these goodies under the tree for me, I’d be ecstatic. I know the gal in your life would be too. xx

last minute gift ideas for her

  1. Sugar Spots Apron – Anthropolgie, $38.00
  2. Floating Triangle Layered Necklaces – Etsy, $52.00
  3. Conair Waterfall Foot Spa – Amazon, $39.00 (as of posting time)
  4. Metal Floral 8×10 Picture Frame – Maison Midi, $42.95
  5. Etched Leaf Mirrored Jewelry Box – Urban Outfitters, $48.00
  6. Birchbox Gift Subscription – Birchbox, $30.00-$200.00
  7. Rainbow Moonstone Pearl Drop Earrings – Etsy, $32.00
  8. Keep Not Settling Print (8×10, Gold Foil) – The Everygirl, $30.00
  9. Voluspa Makassar Ebony & Peach Candle – Kitson, $18.00



{a little holiday cheer in my home.}

It’s been a battle for Christmas cheer this week, and while it was a tight race – Christmas cheer is winning! I’ve been a little under the weather the last couple of weeks and am now on antibiotics; so naturally, things have been slightly off and Scrooge was pushing his way through to say the least. I’ve managed to keep things festive over the last few crappy (then medicated-infused) days and indulge in the holiday spirit. The best way to do that I found, was to watch tons of holiday movies, listen to lots of Christmas music, and focus on the fact that 10 days from now – my boyfriend and I are heading up North for Christmas for a week. I’m looking forward to the change of scenery and the drive (well, because I get to sit and look out the window for 6 hours).

I have to say, last weekend in particular, was especially helpful in keeping my spirits bright when I was feeling my crappiest. My boyfriend brought me a little something to decorate my place (this adorable wreath) to give my humble abode the smell of Christmas since I decided to forego a Christmas Tree this year, along with In-N-Out and my favorite candy. He sat with me all weekend, watched Holiday movies and took really good care of me. I have to give him a special shout-out! Finally, I’m looking forward to a full recovery over the weekend. Who-hoo!

And since last weekend found me trying to lay low and rest (which is not necessarily easy for me do in general), I’ll have to spend some time this weekend catching up on life. This includes laundry (like desperately), grocery shopping, and finally getting around to getting that estimate on my car (full story here).

And in case you want to know…

My Prescription for Holiday Cheer

* Love Actually
* The Holiday
* The Family Stone
* Mr. Bean’s Holiday (which isn’t a Christmas-themed movie, but boy did those silly antics keep me entertained for an hour and a half!)

* Duh, to my Spotify Holiday Hits Mixtape.



Have a great weekend!

What I’m Lovin’ Right Now

Tis’ the season for all things Christmas. This week, I’m sharing everything that stirs up some holiday cheer. From food, to fashion and beauty, to decor – there’s plenty of inspiration here to keep the festivity of the season around you. With exactly 2 weeks to go and this being my last post in the “WILRN”  series for the year – here’s an expanded version of What I’m Lovin’ Right Now.

…and in cased you missed it, it’s all things Christmas.

Blend - food

Candy Cane Hot Chocolate | forkandflower.com
Maple glazed carrots | myrecipes.com
Eggnog Martini | marthastewart.com
Marshmallow Snowman | katiemariedanner.blogspot.com
Santa Hat Christmas Brownies
Christmas Tree-shaped Fruit & Cheese Appetizer (for you health nuts!)
Christmas Lasagna | foodwishes.blogspot.com
White Chocolate Dipped Cherries
Mini Sausage Wreath

Blend - fashion

Wildfox Glowing Lights Sweater | shopbop.com
Red & Green Matte Christmas Nails | goosesglitter.com
Manna Kadar’s Lipstick in “Russian” | birchbox.com
Winter Scarf | girlsguideto.com
Sophia Webster Lola Glitter Pumps | net-a-porter.com
Snowflake earrings | etsy.com
Red Peacoat | jcrew.com (similar)
Winter Wonderland inspired manicure

Blend - decor

 Candy cane wrapped vases with your favorite flowers
Burlap Pillow Cover | etsy.com
Garland wrapped front door
Crafty holiday centerpieces  (upside down wine glasses with ornaments inside, topped with candles) 
Iridescent Orb Tree Lights | anthropologie.com
Mini stocking stuffer silverware holders
Holiday candles garnished with snow-covered pine cones

Mixtape Monday: Holiday Hits


It’s official. Some light holiday decorating and a weekend filled with watching some of my favorite holiday movies and it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas! I thought it would be fun to curate a list of some of my favorite Christmas songs – old and those that are destined to be new favorites. My two “go-to” Christmas CD’s have always been Mariah Carey’s Merry Christmas and Josh Groban’s Noel. There are also some great tracks on Celine Dion’s These Are The Special Times that are nostalgic to Christmas when I was a teenTo mix it up a bit, I decided to check out new releases from both Kelly Clarkson and Mary J. Blige. I have to say, I think Mary’s new holiday album, A Mary Christmas, will make it into rotation for years to come! And Kelly Clarkson’s Wrapped in Red has solid tracks that capture festivity in a fresh way.

So let’s tame some of those chilly Monday Blues with a cup of hot cocoa and my Holiday Hits playlist. Just go ahead and log in to your Spotify account, hit play, sit back and relax, or get to work on those emails with this mix in the background perfect for bringing some holiday cheer!

*If you like the mixtape feel free to subscribe to it on Spotify:

All That Glitters Mixtape Monday: 12.09.2013

Photo Diary: Thanksgiving Weekend

1-2013-11-28 18.40.44

{A Thanksgiving feast!}

Rather than do the traditional turkey feast, Thanksgiving was a Honey Baked Ham-filled weekend; complete with the best Bristol Farms sides ever! No shame here, we cheated and bought a wonderful catered holiday meal that we ate in many variations for the next 4 days straight. This is the caveat when you order a lot of food for only 2 people – leftover central. Ham and eggs for breakfast, ham and mashed potatoes for dinner. Every. Single. Night.

When we weren’t eating, we spent plenty of time watching movies, reading, sleeping, okay, a little more eating; and yes, general all around laziness as needed. I tried to build a weekend that would bring equal parts fun and relaxation to keep things lively, yet un-rushed. Mission accomplished.

Here’s my Thanksgiving weekend photo diary.  And p.s. I can’t even look at another piece of ham for quite some time.

1-2013-11-23 14.34.13

{Picking up the highlight of our Thanksgiving feast – the Honey Baked Ham got a special seat. }

1-2013-11-28 17.05.09

{Pumpkin pie fresh out of the oven.}

1-2013-11-28 17.07.35

{A stocked fridge of Bristol Farms sides. (Please excuse how ridiculously cluttered my fridge looks in this pic!)}

1-2013-11-28 17.07.01

{Some of the weekend’s entertainment: The Princess Bride, Ghostbusters 2 and Mary Poppins were too much fun perfect for light entertainment!}

1-2013-11-28 18.38.19

{Cranberry Apple Cider, the remote control, and a stack of movies.}


{Holiday reading material.}

1-2013-11-30 10.59.33

{A trip to Lake Balboa to take in the view and burn some of those Holiday calories.}

1-2013-11-30 18.04.19

{And last, but not least: A stop to the place were Angelenos go for holiday cheer! A visit to see the 100 foot tall Christmas Tree at The Grove!}

Happy Holidays!!!

Happy Thanksgiving

2013-11-17 18.36.42

{Pardon my “french”  but this gets me every year! Haha!}

Happy Thanksgiving, Everyone! I’m taking the rest of this week off from my blog – with uninterrupted goals of stuffing my face silly, watching movies, and indulging in all things relaxing.

Before I go, I thought I would share a few things I’m grateful for at this particular moment:

  1.  A cozy and comfortable place to call home every night.
  2. Steady employment (always a good thing in this business and this economy).
  3. The company of a good book / spending time with my Kindle.
  4. Dirty Chai Lattes (try one the next time you’re at Starbucks or your local Café –  shhh! they’re on the secret menu).
  5. A car I love to drive with the freedom to go anywhere my heart (but more likely, my wallet) desires.
  6. My good health.
  7. And my Stinker, Ryan.


1-2013-11-17 18.23.34

{Seeking: Holiday Cheer.}

It feels like LA has finally made the switch to chillier temperatures along with the now much shorter sunlit days. Fall seems to have made its grand entrance, with nods to winter seeping through. I find myself breaking out warmer coats and turning the heat on in the evenings when I get home. It seems everywhere I go, every store I walk into – turkeys and pumpkins, red and green, greet me. Indeed, the holidays are a-coming!

I thought the best way to welcome this more festive time of year would be to cross-off a little something I’ve always wanted to do on my” LA bucket-list.” It’s no secret that I get my holiday cheer from The Grove. (Yes, you read that right, The Grove). I’ve always been a sucker for the bright decorations, Santa’s mansion (that thing couldn’t possibly pass for a “cottage” – it’s bigger than my apartment!) and the 100-foot tall REAL Christmas Tree. I’ve always wanted to go to the Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony, but usually when I think about it, it’s already happened! This year, I was on my game and made my wish come true…well, not exactly.

The Grove’s annual Tree Lighting Ceremony, dubbed the Rockefeller of the West Coast, took place on Sunday, November 17th, 2013.  After an early dinner at our favorite Mexican restaurant, my boyfriend and I walked over to The Grove to stake out a good spot and welcome the holidays with a free concert. I had my camera ready to take lots of pictures (because this was going to a great blog post!). I was ready to sing Christmas songs with this year’s performances by Toni Braxton, Babyface, Mary J, Blige, and CeeLo Green, among others.

Yeah, so I was there for about 5 minutes.

Though we expected the nearly 10,000 people making their way to the celebration, I wasn’t prepared for how they choose to set-up the venue. I was more than happy and prepared to be in the back (way in the back) because I was NOT going to spend my entire Sunday staked out for a free concert in a shopping center.  However, I wasn’t expecting them to have already put up Santa’s Mansion either.

If you’ve even been to the Grove, Santa’s “Mansion” sits right in the middle of the shopping plaza. Essentially, Santa’s Mansion blocked the ENTIRE view of the stage. The only way to see the show as on a monitor (that wasn’t very large or very high) to see the performances. Here’s photo proof, note the tiny ass monitor:


{note: tiny ass monitor, people everywhere and Santa’s mansion = no view of stage.}

In this moment, we had two choices. Stand in a crowd among thousands, not being able to see the action, but hearing it live (not a horrible option)….or go home and wait for the broadcast.

We chose the latter.

If I wanted to see a show on a tiny monitor, I could do that from the comfort of my couch…in my warm apartment…in my PJs. And thus begins and ends my tale of trying to grab a little holiday cheer.

The ceremony broadcasts in Los Angeles on KCAL-9, Nov. 28 (Thanksgiving Day) at 8:00 p.m. Check here for other listings.

I feel like it’s been a minute since I just said “hello” due to the film festival wrap-up as my post last Friday. Here are a few randoms on life lately. Have a great weekend!


{Wrapping my boyfriend’s b-day gift.}


{Where the magic happens. Especially on  Monday mornings @ Starbucks.}


{“Selfie:” officially a word in the dictionary as of this week AND Oxford’s word of the year!}

Halloween on Halloween


Happy Halloween Guys!

The plan tonight is rather low-key: a night in with my boyfriend, indulging in some take out on the couch watching the original Halloween. It was just released on Blu-ray for their 35th anniversary edition (and was unexpected purchase while at Target last week for something completely practical. Happens. Every. Time.).

Play safe tonight,




What: Sherwood Scare

Location: 8856 Encino Avenue, Northridge

With the exception of the fact that pumpkins and pumpkin spice everything made an appearance with the turn of the calendar page to October, it hasn’t felt much like Halloween this year. I can’t pinpoint if it’s the general atmosphere, how chaotic life has been lately, or the very peculiar weather over the last few weeks, but I can’t say I’ve been very festive this season. In fact, for the first time in years, I didn’t even carve a pumpkin!

I have been making it a point to incorporate a horror flick here and there to try to shake things up, but when it comes to a good scare to really get in that Halloween state of mind, I knew I needed something new and something within budget,

Enter the power of a Google search.

Then enter Sherwood Scare.

An impressive promo trailer on their website (below), along with a reasonable fee, and 5 star rating on Yelp…and I was on-board!

Deemed one of the best D.I.Y. mazes in town, I couldn’t get over the mere $3 donation benefiting the Big Worm’s Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Not only was it an affordable excursion to get into the Halloween spirit, it was also for a good cause! Win. Win.

The plan was to head out the weekend before last, but I couldn’t make it. Knowing that the maze is only on for two weekends before Halloween, this past Saturday night the decision to hit the heart of the valley to locate that missing festivity and find a good scare was all I could think about. I knew I found it the moment I turned onto the eerily darkened residential street, filled with expansive homes, and a light fog in the air that lent to all good things spooky.

Muffled screams from inside the maze filled the atmosphere as I waited in a short line outside. I got to chatting with the guy working the front door and learned that Sherwood Scare, themed differently every year, is designed and produced by movie industry professionals who create sets. They develop and build the intricate and highly produced maze over what is essentially their basketball court in the backyard of their massive private home – a feat that took over 2 months of planning and construction alone.

2013’s theme, “Camp Sherwood,” welcomes guests into a room where they are introduced to Head Counselor, Skip, before engaging in an orientation video designed to entice visitors of Camp Sherwood’s awesome outdoor adventures…until the once happy-go-lucky campers somehow went missing, returning that fateful night not quite so happy-go-lucky. Thus begins the next 10 minutes of pure terror.

I can vouch that The Sherwood Scare is as awesome as you read about. One almost forgets that you’re simply in someone’s backyard, supporting a good cause. The actors were dressed head-to-toe in horror and stayed in character, successfully creeping me out the entire time. The production value of the scenery was detailed and far superior to what I’d even expected from a $3 admission.

Understandably, photography is not allowed – though you’d be too damned scared just getting through the 2,000 square foot maze to dare attempt to document any aspect of it anyway.

All I can say is, “Bravo! What fun!”

This maze easily rivals and outperforms even the high-end haunts I’ve been to over the years. I can assure you, my lacking Halloween spirit was revitalized by the time I left. I was happily spooked.

The last night to indulge in the dark side at Camp Sherwood is on Halloween Night, this Thursday, October 31st from 7pm-Midnight.