Saturday, December 31, 2011

Simply, Saturday: Shopping!

If you happen to have a little time this weekend between New Years Eve events to do a little online or out and about shopping, you should check out my friend Jack's stores! Jack is an artist. And everything he touches becomes a masterpiece.  Seriously. Right now you can shop his shops on Etsy: FrenchFolly, or peruse his wares in person at The Shops on West Ridge. His West Ridge stores are called A Horse With Wings & Willowbend. They are located on the lower level and are gorgeous! Also, today and tomorrow only, take 50% off!
Get thee there pronto! Take a peek at the beauty...

I dropped by the other day and only had my camera phone with me, so please excuse the poor photos and drool knowing that they only capture a little bit of the luxe. You'll find romantic and vintage inspired clothing, gifts and home and garden furnishings.
The shops also have a Facebook page to visit with more pictures and information.
Oh, and did I mention that Jack also happens to be the Artistic Director of Blackfriars Theater? Yup. He is. (See what I mean about art and masterpieces?) So, I would be totally remiss not to mention that his latest show, Tom Foolery, that I happen to be in, is still going strong. We are sold out for the 7pm show tonight, but seats are available for the 10pm performance and for the shows on the 5-7th.
What ever you end up doing on this New Years Eve day, I hope it's fantastic....
As for Ellie and I, well, we are snuggled up in Mommy's bed, still in our jammies, with no intention of moving until completely necessary. Perfect.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Thirsty Thursday: New Year's Eve!

It's the Thursday before New Year's Eve! 
Are you thirsty?
Here's a delicious alternative to the usual champagne at midnight thing, incorporating, of course, champagne!

The Happy New Year*

* 1/4 oz. Brandy
*3/4 oz. Ruby Port
*3/4 oz. Orange Juice
*4 oz. Champagne

Pour brandy, port and orange Juice into a cocktail shaker filled with ice and shake well.
Strain into a champagne flute and top with champagne.


* recipe courtesy of

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Pinterest: The Muppet Love Continues

At this point, we all know Elizabeth loves the Muppets. Fact. But, I'm certainly not the only one! While fishing around for other things on Pinterest the other day, I came across some serious fans. The lengths to which their Muppet adoration and creativity go, are quite impressive. Take a look!

These next two pieces of graphic art simply rock. 

Some silly Muppet and Angry Birds fun:

Check out this Muppet Theater made of Peeps! Yes, Peeps! I want to want this for Ellie to play with...

And in, perhaps, the ultimate in truly hardcore Muppet love expression, I present to you these outstanding specimens:

                                         (I mean, really...)

(And this? A thousand times yes.)

I also found this... no one "handmade" it, I just think it's totally awesome and want it framed somewhere in my house. Dr. Teeth rules.

Have a happy and snowy Wednesday, all!

Monday, December 26, 2011

Ok....Now What? Crafts? Yes! Crafts!

Christmas is over...
The gifts have been given...
The surprises have been discovered. And now, I can share some of the things Ellie and I made for everyone on this homespun, simple Christmas! Some ideas were ours and some were stolen from the handy, dandy Pinterest! We made a variety of things using basic items like paper, buttons, pom-poms, google-y eyes and a glue gun.
The "big" gift was homemade dry erase boards. This was a project I found on Pinterest. Super simple and customizable. We bought large frames (I would suggest nothing smaller than 8 x 10. Smaller than that defeats the purpose and practicality) and scrapbook paper. It was great fun choosing papers for friends and family based on their own decor, paint colors and stylistic tastes. We cut them, mixed and matched them, glued them into place and put them behind the glass. Voila! The dry erase marker wipes right off the glass. Here are a couple examples.

(umm, yeah, please ignore the reflection of me and my bedhead in the frames.)

We also bought paper mache letters at the craft store and covered them in buttons or pom-poms! Silly and fun. The button covered ones were for the "grown-ups", but the Muppet-esque fuzzy ones were for my sisters and their families. Ellie's idea to glue eyes on was positively inspired. We glued some picture hanging brackets on the back so they could go on the wall, or stand or lean on a table or ledge.

As you can see in the middle photo, we took those ideas and ran with them on Ellie's school pictures, too!

Because: why not? Life is more fun when it's soft and furry and Muppet-y. You couldn't possibly disagree.
So, whether you might use these little ideas for a gift, or for yourself, or to just occupy some time with your kids on this school break, I hope you have fun and get crafty! It's so easy.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas!!!

Merry Christmas!
Here are some of my wishes for you:
I wish you peace, and joy, and love, of course.
I wish you: hot cups of coffee as you watch little faces turn from wonder to delight.
I wish you: sitting on the floor surrounded by pieces of wrapping paper and not caring less.
I wish you: "Emmet Otter", "Elf", and "Miracle on 34th Street."
I wish you: Christmas music and dance parties.
I wish you: friends and family and food.
I wish you: Christmas cookies.
I wish you: Christmas hugs.
I wish you: plentiful smiles and laughter.
I wish you: a roof over your head keeping you safe and warm.
I wish you: remembering whose Birthday it is.
I wish you: a deep appreciation of all you have, even if there isn't a colorfully wrapped present under your tree or in your stocking.
I wish you: the merriest Christmas of all.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Thirsty Thursday: Christmas Cocktail

Most of us (adults) enjoy a little adult beverage during Christmastime, right? Here's a cocktail that would be at home during a Christmas Eve cocktail party, Christmas morning brunch or Christmas day family dinner.  What berry is more Christmas-y than a cranberry? And what says "celebrate" better than champagne?

                   Merry Berry Champagne Cocktail

Simply pour 2 ounces of cranberry juice into a champagne flute and top off with chilled champagne (or non alcoholic beverage like seltzer) and garnish with frozen cranberries.
Simple, lovely, and delish!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas!

It's December 20th and we finally got the tiniest dusting of snow... which has since melted away. But, the sun is bright, so this girl won't complain!
Life is busy as ever.
I am thoroughly enjoying my "Tom Foolery" hiatus with friends and family and holiday cheer. I hope you are, too!
Here are a few pictures from our life to share... 
Ellie and I find this time together particularly Chandelierious....

(yes, those are plain old bows stapled onto a plain, everyday wreath.)

Chandelierious will be back before Christmas, but just in case you're not, please, revel in this time with your families, your friends, your loved ones...
 Know that they are what it's all about. There's nothing more important than the people you love. Less stress... less frantic pace... less pursuit of the hot toy... less excess. More love.
And, well, cookies. Always room for more Christmas cookies. Right? Right.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Simply, Sunday...

Getting ready to take a short break from "Tom Foolery" after this afternoon's performance, but we will be back for 5 more shows beginning on New Years Eve! (So, you still have time to catch a performance, and I hope you do!)

I am looking forward to catching up on life a bit during these next couple of weeks! I love this time of year. I love the hustle and bustle. I love the cheery holiday music. I love the twinkling lights. I love the precious time spent with loved ones. I love that this year our Christmas is more "homespun" and Ellie and I are getting creative and crafty with our decor and our gifts. 

Christmas is about love. The greatest love. And that's what we are keeping in mind this year. Keeping it simple and full of love. And, hopefully, peace and joy. That's the dream, right? Ours anyway. For us, and for you...
So, we hope you eat your fill of cookies, share and open the pretty packages with the people you love, and have joy in your heart. And, yes, please, remember the real reason Christmas is totally awesome.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Tom Foolery!

As promised, here's the info on the new show (yay!)  at Blackfriars Theatre, "Tom Foolery". 

I had never heard of this revue style musical. 
I had also never heard the name Tom Lehrer. He is an American singer-songwriter, satirist, pianist and mathematician, best known for the humorous ditties that he recorded in the 1950's, 60's and early 70's.
This musical pays homage to those ditties.
If you enjoy Mel Brooks or the Smothers Brothers, you'll probably really like this! And, if you don't like them? You should come anyway and hear four people sing about smut and killing birds cabaret style. Good times!

If you want to familiarize yourself with Mr. Lehrer and his brand of humor, click here!
Hope to see you there!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Tips-y Tuesday

Here's today's tip! Take a look at these shops and websites!
More link love to share:

 FrenchFolly is a gorgeous Etsy store by my friend, Artistic Director of Blackfriars Theatre, Jack. This online store sells hand altered vintage finds and creations with a French flair. One of my favorites, which brings to mind my last post about letters and notes, is this vintage box.

Jack also has two booths in The Shops On West Ridge called A Horse With Wings, that sells "improbable, beautiful things" and Willowbend, that sells home and garden items.

My girlfriend Karley just reopened her Etsy shop, Loubirds Nest, after taking a short break to focus on other projects. Her lovely, handmade jewelry is back just in time for Holiday gift giving! I love these beautiful "Givre" earrings in her collection.

Also, why not check out Chandelierious on Pinterest! I am having a grand ol' time "pinning" home decor finds, recipes and Holiday decor ideas! Look at this tree! A slice of Chandelierious heaven.

Ellie and I are finishing up our Christmas decorating and will share it soon... 
I will also be sharing info on my latest theater endeavor: Tom Foolery!
In the meantime, Happy almost December!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Simply, Sunday...

Remember when getting mail actually meant getting a real, tangible, handwritten note delivered to your mailbox?
 I do. I long for those days of yore. 
I am still very much a fan of actual, USPS delivered mail.  I write thank you cards.  I send handwritten notes to loved ones "just because." 
Just because it's awesome and simple and puts a smile on someone's face. Emailing, texting and calling all have their time and place, but a personal note is a special gift that fully expresses genuine care and thought.
That all said, I love note cards. I have dozens upon dozens of them. They are such little pieces of art, and when filled with handwritten words of love, friendship, family, encouragement or support, they are priceless little pieces of art.
Look at these great note cards I spotted out and about this week:

My favorite colors and patterns at Hallmark!

Some great looking sets at Target:

Loving the monograms! That's something that will never go out of style!

A beautiful boxed set....

The Holidays are pretty much here. These, coupled with a book of stamps, would be a lovely gift idea...

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Eloise At The Plaza

When you name your daughter Eloise, it is sort of like breaking some unspoken, unwritten law NOT to provide her with the collection of "Eloise" books, by Kay Thompson:

The Eloise dolls by Madame Alexander:

(Even awesome designer Betsey Johnson has a thing for Eloise!)

Once she is old enough to truly appreciate the experience, take her to Manhattan, to The Plaza, to dine at the Palm Court and shop in the Eloise Store. 
My Eloise and I have done this a few times...
We just returned from a little weekend getaway where we, once again, got our "Eloise at the Plaza" on.  Here are some snippets from our little field trip to The Plaza.
Lunch in The Palm Court...

The Eloise Store and adorable trinkets:

Yes, I want everything. And no, I didn't buy it all. But, we did come home a purple tulle head band that looks like a cupcake sitting atop my daughter's head.

Let's wrap this up Liberace style with a real life Eloise playing "piano" in the store's perfectly over the top,  pink drenched theater.

I could so live there....

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Tips-y Tuesday

Ellie and I are just back from the Dentist with a clean bill of health and some pearly whites. We feel quite sparkly, in fact! In the spirit of minty fresh sparkly-ness, today, Tips-y Tuesday is dental inspired. This is my favorite tooth product (aside from, you know, paste, brushes and floss, of course):

Ta-Dah! I swear by these Rembrandt strips. I have tried the other, bigger brand named ones and personally, I don't think they work nearly as well.  Once a day, for 30 minutes,  for 5 days....twice a year.
So, there's my silly two cents for today...
You can thank my Dentist for inspiring me.