Monday, November 30, 2009

holiday decor!

Friends - one of my favorite things to do is decorate for the holidays! I snapped a couple photos of what G & I have done so far... definitely not finished but a great start I dare say.

{Left & Right side of our mantle}

{our mini tree next to the television}

{our tree!!!!}

{our home all decorated for the season}

{close up - home made wreath given to me by a dear friend}
{Gus getting his first sniff; has since laid his claim and sleeps here}
{my sweet Gus Gus}

{a little family photo}
I am so excited tomorrow is December!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

dominican: the pictures

{our first night... after a 9 hour travel day}

{the gorgeous resort pool}

{lounging at the beach... we spent all our time in these tiki huts!}

{the flamingos in the lobby}

{the gorgeous view from our resort}

Have a great Sunday! Hope everyone had a wonderful holiday weekend!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

this i know for sure.

I'm bbaaaccck! And let me tell you... it was not easy leaving the Dominican. The sun, relaxation, boobs (yes, I said boobs, more on that later), booze, etc. But it's back to reality and that means - catching you up on my vacation AND catching up on your blogs!

First, let me say, HAPPY THANKSGIVING! I hope you all are enjoying lots of family time and stuffing yourself with an amazing Thanksgiving meal. While you're taking a break from the festivities I thought I'd share
some things, based on my vacation to the Dominican, I know for sure:

- The banana hammock is not dead. Having not left the States for a year or two... I had completely forgotten these existed. Until now. Our resort was chock full of European men rocking the hammock all day and in some cases, all night. All sorts of styles, lycras, colors, etc. True story - Guy and I noticed a new couple two days in (you start to recognize and get to know a lot of people in an all inclusive) but then he dropped drawer and we realized, no, it was just neon green banana hammock man. We didn't recognize him with his shorts on. Silly us.

{no it wasn't this bad but it was close!}
- Hair braiding is apparently still in? When I was younger, my parents took me on a cruise to the Bahamas and everyone.... and I mean EVERYONE... was getting their hair braided with colorful beads. Don't lie - you either did this or wanted to do this. I'm pretty sure my mom didn't let me.... I can't find any pictures with said hairdo. Point being..... foreign women are still loving this trend. Half the women under 40 at our resort had their hair braided by the locals. It was like it was 1993 all over again.

{come on ladies... who can resist this fiiinnnee look}
- A topless beach sounds sexy but I promise you it's not. Guy learned this the hard way. Only European women, over the age of 40, were letting their tata's out. It was more of a reminder to me that a breast lift in 20 years might not be such a bad idea after all.

{there should have been a warning so we could brace ourselves}
- Trust your instincts. I brought a dress I love on our vacation. I typically where a slip under it  during the day but decided I'm on vacation, am only wearing it at night, so what the heck. I questioned myself for a second but decided to go slipless. M-I-S-T-A-K-E. Of course the night I wear the dress, we get pulled on stage. Picture bright lights, full audience, see through dress with the lights shining through. Well played Morgan, well played.

{I fear it may have looked something like this... but way less glamourous}
- I can slide a ping pong ball through one of Guy's pant leg across through the other one and a half times in 30 seconds. While wearing a see through dress. On stage. In front of our entire resort.
- And finally.... my hair + Dominican humidity + Dominican water + the worst hair dryer in the World = a week long hair disaster. I'm serious when I say my hair has never looked worse. I had to restrain it back in a braid or bun so as not to frighten the locals.

{Monica could actually pull off the humid hair look... I, could not}

Next up - pictures! There aren't many unfortunately as a) I took a lot with my Diana and need to get the film processed and b) I already told you about my hair so 'nuff said.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Voo Doo Donut

Happy Turkey Day Eve!

Since Morgan is soaking up the sun in the Dominican, she asked me to stop by and keep you entertained while she’s bumming on the beach (lucky girl).

My name is Kristen (KS, Kristen Sara, or anything close) and my bloggie home is over at While We’re Waiting. While Morgan is one of my dearest bloggie friends, she’s also been a real-life friend of mine for almost sixteen years! We had Ms. Limberg’s English class together in 7th grade, and the rest is just history. So of course, I was more than happy than to help her out so she could focus on reapplying her sunscreen every 6 hours…

With Thanksgiving (and a ginormous meal) right around the corner, I have one thing on my mind…


Crazy amounts of food…

So I thought it would be fun to do a little post about a food item (although not a traditional Thanksgiving food) that makes me happy.



Pure Sugar.

Does a body good.
I happen to live right across the street from a Dunkin’ Donuts, and I figure I might as well support local business by stopping in once (or twice) a day.


I was recently made aware (thanks to the Food Network), that Dunkin’ Donuts is not truly the mecca of sweet treats that I thought it was…

(caption: Voo Doo Donuts’ founders Kenneth "Cat Daddy" Pogson and Tres Shannon)

Have you heard of Voo Doo Donuts?

It was founded by two eclectic, crazy friends in Portland, Oregon…

And they sort of put my local Dunkin’ Donuts to shame.

They of course sell a name sake donut, “The Voo Doo Donut.”

But they’re menu includes some wilder choices as well…

Like the Captain Crunch Donut.

Can you feel your teeth rotting out?

Or the Triple Chocolate Penetration…

(which is a chocolate donut, with chocolate glaze and covered with cocoa puffs)

Or the Bacon Maple Bar…

Which was first taste-tested by Brad Pitt.
One of my good friends is from Portland, and he has confirmed the hype that this place is the real deal…

Have any of you had a Voo Doo Donut??

And here’s the craaaaaaaaaziest fun fact about Voo Doo Donut…

They do weddings.

And by that, I don’t mean just wedding/donut cakes.

They perform weddings.

According to their website, a Voo Doo Donut wedding is guaranteed absolutely, 100% legal, unless you don't want them to be. The service is performed by ordained ministers beneath the holy doughnut and a velvet painting of Isaac Hays or Kenny Rodgers (depending upon location).

And I will leave you on that note…

However you spend your Thanksgiving (with family and friends, in front of the TV watching football, or even tying the knot beneath the Holy Doughnut)… I hope you’re surrounded by everything that you’re thankful for…

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

I choose to celebrate and be thankful.

Hi. Hello. How are you? This is Kristen over from KLaw: Inspired. Morgan asked me to do a little guest spot over at her place and I was HONORED!

Of course its always a little stressful trying to come up with a good topic of choice. I know Morgan and I know she rocks, so I'm assuming that you lovely folks are just as rad. But maybe you aren't quite ready for my sexual innuendos with regard to my two loves, Ryan and Mark (Reynolds and Salling, in case you're wondering). Yes, I'd do just about anything to make them slap my ass and call me Sally, but perhaps we should save that for another day.
Shall we talk about Thanksgiving?
I cannot fathom that the time has come round again for cranberry paste in the shape of an aluminum can, delicious homemade mashed potatoes and my fabulous 7 layer bars (recipe to come if you stay tuned).
Since Thanksgiving in 1995, my heart hasn't been in it. I feel death. I feel empty. I feel sad. I vividly relive the day over and over again, scene by scene. While most days I can't remember what I even ate for lunch the day before, this memory is vibrant. I wish I could make it disappear with the quickness that I do taco's on Taco Tuesday (this girl can pack them away - its actually quite disgusting).

My grandmother wasn't just a family member that you saw a few times a year; that pinched your cheeks; that commented on how your nibblets have grown since the year before. She was my second mother. I spent afternoons at her house doing homework. She made me the best saltine / cheddar / mustard crackers any time I wasn't feeling well. She made clothes for my dolls. She made a mean spagetti and meatballs, even if she couldn't boil and egg otherwise. She let me play with her old Cover Girl compacts, pretending I was a beauty queen. She and I had a special bond. I was her first grandchild.
Grandma Weezy was a spunky young thing. Only 64 years old when she passed away. She loved turqouise jewelry. She taught country line dancing at the local YMCA up until the week she died. She traveled the United States in a camper with her boyfriend Bud. She even started a thimble collection for me on her journeys, of which my Mom and I have taken over addint to. I hope to one day pass it along to my children, and their children, and maybe even their children.
Thanksgiving day 1995. Grandma started up her little red Toyota and began the 3 mile journey to our house. As she arrived, she exited the car, picked up her covered dish of warm mashed potatoes, and slowly opened our front door. As we walked toward her in a warm greeting, she collapsed.
I'll spare you the details, as it is still very painful and I am now in tears thinking about it. But Grandma had a heart attack that day. Right there in the front door of our house. She made it to the hospital and hung on long enough to say her last goodbye's to her four daughters and me, her first grandchild.
Ever since, Thanksgiving has been a very painful reminder of that day. The day we lost a mother. A grandmother. A really rad lady. But, I am making a vow to celebrate this day from this year forward. This is a day to remember her. Not to mourn. A day to celebrate her life and not a day to think of her death.
I hope everyone finds something to be thankful for this year. Even if life is kicking you in the pants and making you its bitch, at the very least be thankful for the presence of family and friends. I can say that I will be thinking of my Grandmother with fond memories this year. A year that has been full of trials and misfortunes for me. But I will go into this holiday happy, with a warm heart. All because of her.

As promised, here is my kick ass 7 layer bar recipe: sure to make your ass fat and your thighs giggle.

Layer in this order in a 9 x 13" pan

Melt one stick of butter
1.5 cups of crushed graham crackers, spread evenly into melted butter and pressed to form the crust

1/2 bag of chocolate chip morsels

1/2 bag of butterscotch morsels

Shredded coconut

1 6oz can of condensed milk, spread evenly over the above

Chopped walnuts
Bake at 350 for 15 minutes, or until coconut has browned. Cut into squares and serve at room temperature.

Enjoy. And Happy Thanksgiving!!

Monday, November 23, 2009

let us give thanks

hey hey hey! it’s me, mayra of life is BANANAS. morgan so kindly asked me to take over her blog guest post while she’s away on vacay. of course, i agreed. lady is AWESOME! little history for ya, morgan was one of my very first followers turned bloggy bud. she is amazingly cool, always one for a good time and a beer drinker, like myself. i’m pretty sure we’d be great friends in real life. dontchathink morgan? i’ll just answer yes for her…

anywho, while she's off soaking up the dominican sun and having herself a cocktail or four, i’m in control (insert evil laugh here) but do not fear, i have quite the positive post for ya’ll. you see, it’s thanksgiving week and we bloggers have a lot to be thankful for…

i don’t know about you but i'll be the first to admit photoshop and i, we're best friends. it’s true, we hold hands, we have dance parties, we frolick in fields of gold. and it is big thanks to my BFF (photoshop) that one can go from eh, average to holy mother of fineassness, break me off a piece of that!!!

if your blog has grown in popularity you know the importance of weekends. (a) you get a break from blogging and no one worries. you miss a weekday and your inbox is bombarded with emails asking where you went, if you're coming back and when! (b) weekends provide for easy monday posts in the form of weekend updates. who really wants to think much on mondays, ya know?

fashion bloggers.
those fabulous women who post their daily outfits are not only pleasing to the eyes but pleasing to our lives. you don’t know how many times i’ve stared at my closet wandering what on earth to wear, only to visit a couple fashion blogs and get instant inspiration.

and speaking of fashion, you ever see someone on the street wearing something oh so fabulous you have to have it? in the real world, you’ll either have to search high and low or balls up and ask the random where she got her fab ensemble. in the blog world, it’s called linkbacks. you like it, you click it and oila, it can be yours.

life without comments…drab and boring. life with comments…g double-o d good. and i’m not talking lame-o comments like “nice pics” or “funny post”...i’m talking about those thoughtful comments that show interest in the amazingness that is YOU.

bloggy friendships.
last but not least, the friendships made in this crazy blog world have been indescribable. i can’t begin to tell you how many gals i've met that think like me and/or share the same experiences as me. who knew that by joining this little community, you could meet some of the most coolest chicks ever.

there you have it, folks. i say we're a lucky bunch, us bloggers. having said that...

have yourself a fantastic turkey day!


Friday, November 20, 2009

a note of thanks

Friends - I'm flying over the Atlantic as you read this.... actually... I'm scheduling this for 10a so I'll be in the Miami airport during my FOUR HOUR LAYOVER... but nonetheless... I wanted to leave you with a note of thanks.
Thank you for being such an amazing community of friends over the past 10 months. I can't tell you how much this blogging community has meant to me and how I value each and everyone of you. Your comments make me smile on a daily basis and I can't imagine not getting your daily updates and comments.
I'm leaving my blog in the capable hands of some amazing women while I'm away. I've lined up three guest posts that you are going to love!
Enjoy your weekend and blog lots so I have fun posts to catch up on Wednesday!!
photo found here

Thursday, November 19, 2009

a look back.

Where did this year go? I can't believe we are seven days away from Thanksgiving! Every year flies by but this year has moved at warp speed. I was thinking about the months past while driving to work this morning and realized so many great things have happened this year.

In JANUARY...I made no resolutions and still managed to live my life more authentically. Not worrying as much about what others think, choosing to be happy as much as possible, etc.
In FEBRUARY...I celebrated my 28th birthday, started blogging and quickly realized I had not only found a new hobby but a new love.
In MARCH...I said goodbye to my dear friend Sandy who moved to London and celebrated my parents anniversary (which becomes more and more important each year)
In APRIL...I took Guy to Omaha for the first time to spend the weekend with my family, saw my beautiful friend Leslie get married, and celebrated Guy's and my two year anniversary.
In MAY...we celebrated Guy's 28th birthday.
In entire family came to visit for a week and Guy and I spent every weekend at the beach.
In JULY...Guy and I had the best 4th of July and visited two of my favorite people in NYC.
In AUGUST...I welcomed the wind down of excited for college football...and visited my brother and sister in law in DC
In SEPTEMBER...I did nothing. And loved every minute of it.
In OCTOBER...I rocked out at Austin City Limits and welcomed my nephew Max into the world
In NOVEMBER....I conquered a big moment in my career, am about to leave on a trip I've been waiting for 8th months for....and am going to celebrate Thanksgiving by stuffing myself to the brim.
In DECEMBER... ??????

2010 is going to have a lot to live up to!!!! How has 2009 been for you?
image from Google images

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

mental exhaustion

I'm going to see if I can keep my eyes open long enough to write this post. I am mentally WIPED OUT. We had a big conference in town this week that I was slated to speak at twice... on top of constant meet and greet action that typically goes along with a conference. I was honored to be asked to speak but there is a lot of prep work involved... and with that comes stress. The past three days I have:
- gotten 16 hours of (really poor) sleep
- been running through statistics and bullets in my head constantly
- eaten less than normal (I've realized I am not a stress eater)
- been a grouch to Guy more than once because I was stressed
- tried to get away with not washing my hair because I was running low on time and it did not bode well

Thankfully it is all over. My sessions were productive and people seemed receptive and now I can catch up on emails and work. See below for what I wish I was doing.

Good news is that Guy and I leave for the Dominican Republic Friday!(imagine me jumping up and down squealing with delight... I'm doing it on the inside..I promise... ) I just need to make it through work today and tomorrow and then I'm home free.
Hope you're all having a productive Wednesday! I must now caffeinate.
images from Google

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

setting my tivo for 2010

Oh my gosh... I hope this is true... and I think it must be because I read it on Perez Hilton. He knows his shizz. My sweet sweet Nate Berkus is getting his own talk show in 2010. YESSSSSSSS. An hour of Nate every day. It doesn't get sweeter. As if you need proof.... but just in case... see below. HUZZAH!

dear santa

I want this for Christmas. Pretty please?

You can find it here & it's totally affordable.
Jewelry is meant to be displayed and not hidden away in a jewelry box. They're like little pieces of art.
K? Cool. xoxo

Monday, November 16, 2009

a sneak peek...

I was a busy bee yesterday and did something a little crazy but mostly a little fun...... I opened up my very own Etsy shop! Now let's be honest... I'm not looking to be next big thing on Etsy but I do enjoy making my banners and it's become a creative outlet for me so I thought why not?!

I only have two items for sale, both of which I've highlighted on my blog before... but I plan to make more and post them soon. Wish me luck! xoxoxo

get over it.

Does anyone else listen to Kidd Kraddick in the morning? He's a radio personality out of Texas and his show is pretty funny. I only have a 5 minute commute to work (I'm lucky right?) so I don't get to catch much but what I do - I like.
This morning he had a segment called "Get Over It" that inspired this post. Callers write or call in with someting like " To my mom and dad.... my fiance and I are getting married with or without you.... get over it!" or "To all Patriot fans out there... you lost last night... get over it!" You get the idea.... and so I bring you... my Monday morning 'get over it.'

To the bagger at my local grocery store.... yes I want paper and yes I realize it's more of a hassle for you but get over it.
To our waiter Friday night.... yes I drink a lot of water and no I don't think it should be THAT much of a hassle for you to continue to bring me refills of water.... get over it.
To the 90 year old woman tailing me all the way to my morning meeting.... you shouldn't be driving. You can barely see over the steering wheel. Tailing me doesn't help your cause... get over it.
To the person who shall remain nameless who can't manage to get their work done because they're too busy avoiding work.... get over it. We're not here to do your work.
I'm fiesty this morning! Maybe I can channel it into a productive Monday morning. :)
Do any of you have any "get over it" sentiments this morning?

Sunday, November 15, 2009

sunday confession.....

I may have just purchased a snuggie. And not just any snuggie, a collegiate snuggie.
I couldn't resist the fact that they had a University of Wisconsin print.
I can't believe I will soon be an owner of a snuggie. Heaven help me. I need to know I'm not alone. Please tell me at least one of you out there has succomb to the snuggie craze?!?!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

a little saturday shopping

This morning I did a little shopping since I had recieved a 30% coupon to Old Navy, Gap, and Banana Republic for this weekend. I needed some good basic sweaters and I found some great options! I used Polyvore (of course I am now obsessed with making these....) so you can see my finds. They'll be perfect for both work and weekend errands.

Items in this set:
GAP sweater, $45
Old Navy sweater, $30
Old Navy top, $30
Best news was the new Old Navy sweaters were $13 each (EEEKKKK!!!) because of the 30% off and the Gap sweater was around $30. These pictures don't do them justice... if you have time... hit Old Navy up for sure. The purple cardigan I got has a really pretty lace trim and the black cardigan has ruffles down the front. Both are styles I've seen in JCrew but of course are WAY better priced.
Happy Shopping!
{P.S. Gap has released their Christmas commericial... which means it's offical. It's the holiday season!}

Friday, November 13, 2009

the last!

Morning friends! Happy Friday! Can I just tell you how stressful these last few weeks have been?! Work has been crazy, I've either been traveling for work or booking travel for the holidays, I'm speaking at a conference next week (TWICE) and feel overwhelmed and underprepared, and have a family dinner tonight with my parents and Guys parents that is for some reason stressing me out even though they've met before. AHHHHHHHHH.
{tangent complete}
So this morning I was pretty proud of the outfit I put together as I used all things that have been in my closet forever but I never wear for one reason or another. I wanted Guy to take a picture but he left in a hurry and I wasn't up for setting the timer and dealing with that nonsense on my camera. SO.... I tried Polyvore for the first time and actually got pretty close.

You're probably like 'what's so great about that?' I know I know... but I was proud of my layering (three layers!) and love my blazer so I thought it would be fun. Plus I give myself extra credit when I make outfits that I'll still be able to wear in 10 years.

Last night I made my first Christmas banner... it's pretty cute but I 'm not 100% on it for some reason. I'll make more this weekend and hope for better results!

Hope ya'll are having a great Friday!