Ghosts, Goblins, and Ghouls - Oh My!!!

I can't say I've ever been a huge fan of Halloween. Dressing up is fun, but overall it's just kind of a cheesy rip-off holiday because you don't get a day off. I really sound like a ball of fun, eh?

It's different now that we have a kiddo - even more so because her birthday is the 30th. I have a feeling I'll be throwing Halloween-themed birthday parties for...well, a long time. In preparation for P's first birthday party, I've been trolling Etsy for unique - yet ghastly - decorations. The cheesier, the better!

These are adorable AND make perfect party favors.

These gross stickers will be fun to put on the front of the beverage dispensers.

Whoever has a Mommy that does this is one lucky kiddo.

I'm totally going to steal this candy bar idea, though.

These are so cute, I'd leave them up for longer than Halloween.

These decals would be fun to put up here and there.


The Joys of Parenting

Baby P is going to be eleven months old tomorrow, much to her father's and my dismay. Where did all the months go? Why do the sleepless nights seem so long, but the days fly by? We began to run through all her developments last night to make sure she was 'where she should be' at her age. Crawling? Check. Pulling herself up? Check. Putting consonants and vowels together? Check. Teeth? Um...no.  Not a one, not even the tiniest speck of white for as long as we've checked (which is obsessively every morning and night).

The little monkey feeling around for pearly whites.

For a while now, I've been musing about how odd it seems that she still remains toothless. I've consulted the doctor, other mothers, books, etc. The answer is always the same - all babies develop differently. This answer makes rational sense and it's hard to argue, but I still experienced the same feeling that I've felt A LOT since P was born - fear. Being a parent is hard - it's a lot of responsibility, stress and financial strain. It's also the best thing ever and I can't imagine life without her in it.

I can handle all the ups and downs of parenting, but the element of fear is something I hadn't anticipated. There are so many 'what ifs' and close-calls. It's not just an adrenaline rush that I feel if I'm cut off in traffic when P's in the car - it's gut-wrenching, piercing, painful fear that rips through my body and doesn't go away for longer than I'd like to admit.

G always reminds me that being afraid of P not getting teeth should be the least of our fears, and I have to agree. There are legitimate things about parenting to be afraid of and then there are the things that you just have to let go of and realize that they're out of your control. The best we can do is give her the best life possible and then let her soar. Which, at this rate, is going to be here before we know it.

So, after story time, a bottle and some hugs for Daddy, I picked P up to put her to bed and felt along her gums - just in case. And, sure enough, poking up through the drool and gummy smile was a pearly, white, perfect little speck of a tooth. That little tooth assured me that it's going to be a wild ride, but everything's going to be OK.


Sweet Discoveries

One of my favorite blogs, Cupcakes and Cashmere, posted some finds from the store Jayson Home & Garden. I had never heard of it before and eagerly checked out their online store. The vibe is totally eclectic and items range from petrified wood (to use as a table) to Gothic Revival armchairs. PLUS, they are launching an online version of their Flea Market this week which will feature antiques and vintage findings. October 1st can't come soon enough!


Down and Out

Not to sound like a Debbie Downer or anything, but this is the WORST COLD OF MY LIFE!!! It's going on almost two weeks of clogged ears, stuffy nose, hacking up a lung - I'll spare you the details. After a week at home with a sick kid, whiny dog and a mountain of Kleenex, I'm back to the daily grind. To make my first day in the land of the living more tolerable, I put on my latest go-to outfit. It looks mostly like this:

Fall Uniform

Except...I got my skinny cargoes and a gray dolman sweatshirt at TJ Maxx, my scarf is a similar print but comes from a small boutique in Toronto and my watch is from Target. It's simple, comfy and looks somewhat chic without trying too hard.


Sick As Dogs

No, I haven't been on vacation. No, I haven't been SOOO busy at work I couldn't find time to update my blog. I've been sick with some super-powered virus that has quickly infected not only me, but everyone else in my family. This is the first day I've felt good enough to actually get online and respond to emails and post. While the congestion, cough and sore throat are manageable, I can't quite handle the clogged ears - does anyone have any suggested for unblocking these things???

I'll -hopefully - be able to post something more interesting tomorrow...stay tuned!


Fashion Week!!! Part II

More beautiful creations from 2011 Spring New York Fashion Week! What did you think of this year's collections? Any favorites?

Monique L'huillier: Wouldn't you DIE for that feather cape?

Monique L'huillier: I am envisioning someone like January Jones wearing this to some fabulous event.
Monique L'huillier: This is just...too much! It's like she's wrapped in cotton candy, sparkles and liquid gold.
Jenny Packham: I love this silhouette and the glistening details.
Jenny Packham: This color is the perfect blend between nude and apricot.
Jenny Packham: I can't get over how perfectly rocker chic/glamour goddess this looks.
Rebecca Taylor: I was a little disappointed in her collection this year, but I do LOVE the snakeskin details.
Rebecca Taylor: The front zipper is cute, but has the potential to be unflattering.
Marchesa: I'm torn! The details are gorgeous but...
Marchesa: Again, beautiful detailing but I'm somewhat underwhelmed.
Marchesa: This was my favorite of the collection - but what's up with the grump wearing it?


Simply Fabulous DIY

Kristine, of The Painted Hive (a favorite for obvious reasons), recently posted this DIY makeover of a rather drab lighting fixture. What she did with relatively little money OR resources is amazing.

AFTER - check out how she did it!

Home Sweet Home

We're still in the process of unpacking...STILL! I emptied a bunch of boxes this past weekend and rediscovered things I had forgotten about and was subsequently inspired to do the following:
I stuck a yellow mum in a beautiful new wooden salad bowl (courtesy of lovely Miss Lee) flanked with my favorite birch branch metal candlesticks.

We bought and were gifted a ton of old bottles. I tried lining them up across our mantel with some vintage travel posters and my recently purchased - AWESOME - TJ Maxx cushioned bench ($60!!!).

I filled a glass bowl with dried botanicals, a white candle and porcelain letter balls that I found at Michael's - for a dollar a piece!!!


Falling for Antiques

My friends, Dana, Katie, Melissa and I took off for the Brimfield Antique Fair this past Sunday - it was the last day which means most dealers are ready to work a deal. To say this fair is overwhelming would be an understatement. Dana refers to situations like this as a 'Sephora Experience', meaning there is too much to look at, too much excitement, too many smells/people/colors, too many deals and you just end up running out of the store before your head explodes (i.e. Sephora, Target, IKEA).

We made it through MAYBE a quarter of the stalls before I found some really great pieces for our formal living room and negotiated sweet prices that made my husband proud. Dana, alas, lapsed into a 'Sephora Experience' and only ended up with two small botanical prints. Luckily, this fair takes place twice a year and we'll try again in the Spring.

Darling loveseat from the 1920's - newly upholstered!!!
Matching armchair and Victorian end table.
Fun metal 'N' that I'll spray paint and hang in our family room.
Antique birdcage which will hang from one corner in our living room.


An Explosion of Chocolate

I was inspired this weekend to bake a cake from scratch for my dad's birthday. I had visions of frothy frosting, moist chocolate layers and yummy smells wafting through the house. What actually happened was that I had a half hour to put everything together and I didn't wait long enough for the cakes to cool, so the end result was a drippy, messy...well, mess. While it may not have been the most beautiful cake, it definitely tasted sinful and we polished that sucker off in one night.


Fashion Week!!!

It's New York Fashion Week for Spring and Summer 2011 collections!!! I LOVE Fashion Week because it gives such great insight into trends that we'll start seeing in the stores come mid-January. So far, I spot a lot of neutrals, occasional pops of bright color, ruffles and LOTS of skin. Take a peek at some of my faves...

Zac Posen - Va Va Voom!
Zac Posen - How cute are the little pineapples?

Zac Posen - Never could/would I wear this, but, so darling!
Christian Soriano - Project Runway perfection!
Christian Soriano - Holy macaroni!!!

Christian Soriano - What celebrity will wear this to Cannes???

DVF - The lime & aqua combo?! I'm obsessed!

DVF - Classic sexy print. 

DVF - There are no words...

Lela Rose - The ombre is effect is 'beyond' (as Rachel would say).
Lela Rose - Orange!
Lela Rose - This is THE Oscar dress.

Target + Tucker = ♥

I've been looking forward to the arrival of Tucker at Target for months now. Our local store got their shipment in on Thursday night (Linda, in woman's clothing, and I were besties by Wednesday morning) so I hustled us out of the house on Friday afternoon to get my paws on some ridiculously cheap Tucker prints. I have to say that some Target Go International collections are disappointing, BUT I was thoroughly impressed with this line. I snapped up the blue blouse below and might order a few others online.


Weekly Etsy Finds

Sigh. This week has been tough - crazy commute, weird weather and we had such a great long weekend that it was hard to get back into the swing of things. Enter the bright spot of my week, trolling Etsy to find new lovely things to share with you.

Just because: It's superficial, but buying things makes me happy and I'm not afraid to admit it. Especially when they are adorable AND handmade. This fold-up, cloth campfire is precious AND perfect for playtime; I'm a sucker for paper goods and these note cards fit the bill; our house is an antique, so geometric, colorful prints can really make an old room pop; trees make me happy and this print would look great on a white wall.

For R&R: I've been having a hard time falling asleep lately. Just as I'm about to drift off to la-la land, I hear a phantom baby crying. I check the monitor, and P is just snoozing away. A lot of moms complain about this. It's normal, right? Until this phase passes, a few good smelling candles, an eye mask, a warm neck pillow and yummy bath salts should help knock me out.

For busy moms: I'm coming to terms with the fact that I really don't need to carry a handbag anymore since our diaper bag is big enough to fit mommy AND baby stuff in. The thought has me verging on tears. As a compromise, I thought a cute wristlet for easy access to cash, cards and keys would lessen my depression. As you can see, I'm prone to florals (here, here and here), so I threw in a simple leather version to mix things up.
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