Highlights

Day59ATGFINAL

{Day 59: Sometimes a girl just needs a Rice Krispies Treat in the sunshine.}

Things are finally starting to settle down in my life a bit and I’m glad for it. I’m over my most recent bout with the common cold, and have been busily crossing things off on my never-ending to-do list with much satisfaction. This month has been one of the most chaotic, exhausting, fun-filled, yet challenging months I’ve had in quite some time. As such, I’m welcoming the long holiday weekend with open arms (and lots of rest).

Tonight, we’re off to see X-Men: Days of Future Past (let us all take a moment and just say, Fassbender!), and will check out the new documentary film, Fed Up, that’s been on my must-see list for a while now at some point before the end of the weekend. I’m also excited about some much-needed girl time with a new friend over brunch. Crunchy Cornflake-encrusted french toast, a large vanilla latte, and lots of girl talk couldn’t sound any better at the moment. Otherwise, I look forward to a rather uneventful Memorial Day Weekend ahead…and that’s a-okay with me.

I won’t be posting this Monday due to the holiday. We’ll be back to our regularly scheduled programming on Wednesday with the scoop on my May Birchbox. Until then, I hope the long weekend treats you and yours very well.

A few of my favorite 100 Happy Days Challenge photos/highlights of life lately for your viewing pleasure.

See you soon! xx

day52ATGFINAL

{Day 52: What LA does best on a clear day. It really doesn’t get any better than this!}

Day55ATGFINAL

{Day 55: Fresh pedi. New rug.}

day53ATG FINAL

{Day 53: Sunflowers as centerpieces. It just works.}

 

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

Highlights

1-IMG_20131102_121131

{decisions, decisions.}

Well into November, and what a busy month it will be. My boyfriend’s birthday, AFI Fest, the first meeting of my new book club (where I need to haul ass and get the book done!), Thanksgiving, stressing over all things Christmas, and things oh-so-busy at the office…you know, the works!

I realized recently that while I make a conscious effort to take care of myself by eating healthy, and getting enough sleep – I’ve likely been in a weird mood lately because I’m falling into that trap again where I’m not taking the time to slow down and relax more, getting out of my head, and indulging in things that make me truly happy. And even doing the things that don’t necessarily make me happy at the time, but I’m always glad I did (I’m looking at you “gym”).

I know they say money doesn’t buy you happiness (though I beg to differ because it certainly did in this case – ha!), but I think the biggest highlight over the last week was on Saturday morning. My guy and I got up after a good night’s sleep and went out to breakfast, then I went out to splurge on the first professional pedicure I’ve had in over a year. Queue the relaxation…

If there’s one way I would start out every Saturday morning, it would be to sit in a small café, cradling a latte, eating pancakes with strawberries on top, and chatting with him. There’s nowhere to be, and nothing else to do right then and there. It was the happiest moment I’ve had (aside from being Spooked the weekend before) in quite some time. Of course, this would get expensive quickly so it’s unrealistic for now, especially since I’m no slack in the kitchen when it comes to making breakfast on the weekends – but I guess the change of pace and environment was nice. And sitting in a spa chair for half an hour for a pedicure was the icing on the cake!

This weekend kicks off 2013’s AFI Fest so I’ll be in the heart of Hollywood all weekend long saturated by the best in cinema. I love the eclectic mix of films and being in the environment with other cinephiles, though the waiting in line for hours before each film is not my favorite part. It’s amazing how draining it is just waiting around for a movie to start. At least I’ll be in good company. Since I have over half a book to get through before my book club next week, my Kindle and I will spend some time together while I wait. I’ll post about the film festival next week, complete with the films I saw and a wrap-up of the experience. I’m on the docket to check out 6 new films in the next 3 days! In the meantime, you can read about last year’s experience here.

Have a marvelous weekend everyone…and treat yourself to breakfast if you can. It’s worth every single cent to splurge sometimes.

1-Recently Updated2

{Purple pedi splurge.}

Nailed It

One of the luxuries that I used to give myself was a pretty consistent trip to my favorite nail salons around town for a relaxing pedicure that always made me feel recharged and happy afterward. Unfortunately, this was one of those luxuries that I put the kabosh on when I made the decision to move into my own place and needed to reallocate expenses. The beauty is, while it is nice to sit back, flip through a 3-week-old US Weekly while someone gives you a foot massage and soft toes – at home mani/pedis can be almost as relaxing. It’s one of those DIY’s that force you to zone out and simply focus on what you’re doing (though I fail at not being able to keep the polish off neighboring skin every. single. time.).

For the most part, I tend to stick to pretty neutral colors when it comes to nail polish, but lately I’ve been experimenting with a lot of different colors to keep things fresh and fun. Nails have become all about color. Nothing is off-limit. I have to say though, an amazing white french tip on the toes is still the epitome of classic fresh in my opinion and was my go-to look when I was a religious nail salon visitor.

Since these visits are no more, I’ve become that girl who does her own at home nail treatments. This simply means: remove the color, shower, and re-polish; not always taking the time to recreate that spa experience at home.

I don’t polish my fingernails too often because no matter what I do, they chip an hour later without fail. (Ugh.) So I’ve become a huge fan of changing it up frequently when it comes to toes in particular. One of the best things about this time of year are open toed sandals with a fresh pedicure.

I thought I would share some of my favorite nail polish colors and these 2 helpful videos on how to recreate a little bit of that missing spa experience at home and on the cheap. I hope it inspires you to still keep things luxurious…even on a budget.

Nailed It_ Polish Colors

Happy painting! xx