Monday, December 28, 2009

Lights On The Tree

Eric's family has a beautiful Christmas tree in their family room.

It was also super exciting to find a bunch of gifts for me under the tree!

I hope you all had a lovely holiday. I'm looking forward to New Year's Eve! Where will you be celebrating?

Driving Into A Cloud

On Saturday afternoon, after spending a week at home, it was time to say good-bye. My mom drove me over the Mohawk Trail on our way to meet up with Eric. We were in clouds and surrounded by a dusting of snow as we drove over the mountain, and it felt like magic.

The trees and road just disappeared into white. Visibility was actually pretty good, so we didn't even lose any time. It was just fun to look around.

Later today or tomorrow I'll post photos of Eric's family's Christmas tree.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

2009 Holiday Forest

I like my pictures of our holiday forest this year. (See last year here.) I used a tripod and everything! I also got the daytime look and the nighttime look.

We don't really have any Christmas Eve day traditions, do you? I'm just happy to spend time with my family. It's the best.

Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays or Wonderful Winter (whatever your heart desires)!

*I'm posting a few more photos on flickr. Plus it's Thursday, so there's a Lost in Thoughts posted on the Everything Little Miss blog!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Teeny Tiny Gingerbread Houses

Yesterday I made the most adorable little gingerbread houses. But these are not your ordinary houses, these little guys sit on the edge of your mug of hot chocolate, just to make it super special. My mom found the tutorial over at Not Martha, and she wanted to give them as gifts. Since my mom had to work until 6 last night, I was in charge.

It was my first time making gingerbread houses without my mom. Luckily, she'd already made the dough, so she was able to help me bake & build the first one before leaving for work. But then I was on my own. I made 9 total.

My favorite part was decorating, of course!

It was a lot of fun and not too hard, so check out the tutorial if you're interested!

P.S. We had dinner at a friend's last night and brought these for the hosts. They were very well received!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

December Blizzard

The blizzard started late Saturday night. The snow was really coming down, and by noon on Sunday there was at least a foot. ♥

Eric braved the storm so that I could come home for the holiday week -- he drives me halfway and then my parents (this time it was my sister) meet me and bring me the rest of the way home.

It was slow going at first, but we made it. In fact, the mess on the roads only added about 20 minutes to our trip (but it felt like an extra hour or two). The farther west we headed, the better the roads got. At the halfway point, there was no sign of a blizzard at all.

I took the pictures from the car.

Luckily, there was already some snow on the ground in North Adams, so I'll still have a white (with a few patches of grass) Christmas.

Monday, December 21, 2009

1 Semester Down

Today Eric took his last final of his first semester. Can you believe he only has 3 semesters to go until he's got an MBA from Harvard Business School (HBS)? It may be cliche, but it's true: time flies when you're having fun!

Dear Eric,
I'm so proud of you.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

7th Night Of Hanukkah

I've always liked lighting the menorah for Hanukkah. There's this picture of me as a little kid just looking at the candles in awe. I still feel that way. There's something magical about them.

When I was little I would sometimes get upset about getting smaller gifts than my friends or I'd be jealous of my sister's prizes. As a kid, it's hard to see past the presents during the holidays. But as I get older I understand why people are always talking about the spirit of the season. This year I haven't opened a gift each night of Hanukkah, but it's still been fabulous. Suddenly trinkets don't seem as important as they once did. Now I'm grateful for the life I'm living, the things I have, and the people who love me. I don't really want anything else for Hanukkah.

Christmas is a different story. I'm expecting mountains of gifts bright and early on the 25th! (Totally kidding, family. No I'm not. Yes, I really am.)

*Today's Lost in Thoughts is awesome, if I do say so myself. Plus, there's a special offer! Check it out right here.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Sunday In The South End

On Sunday afternoon we went to the South End to check out the SoWa Holiday Market. It was really crowded, but I did manage to pick up a gift for my sister.

We also spent some time exploring the area.

One of the highlights of the afternoon was the 15 or so minutes we spent laughing at dogs playing in the dog park. There was one little dog, in particular, that was just the most adorable thing!

It was sort of a dreary day, weather-wise, and when it started raining we headed to the car. We bought coffee (Eric), hot chocolate (me), and an apple fritter to help us warm up and to perfect our day.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Waking Up In Newport, RI

Friday night we went to Newport, RI to visit friends from college. It was great! They cooked a delicious meal for us, we lit the menorah for the first night of Hanukkah, and we talked and laughed late into the night. We brought pajamas and pillows and camped out on the surprisingly comfortable fold-out couch.

In the morning we all headed to breakfast and then went for a drive along the ocean.

Newport is really beautiful, and filled with history; we really need to spend more time there and really walk around and see the town.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Black & White Keys

Thanksgiving was a while ago now, but I haven't shared any photos. That's because I didn't really take many. I was sick, and picking up the camera, telling people to smile, and focusing seemed like a lot of work. So I didn't really bother. I did take a few photos at my Aunt & Uncle's house, though.

My Aunt is a wonderful pianist, and her piano is really beautiful. For a little while I was interested in learning to play. I got a small keyboard for Christmas in 6th grade, and during the winter vacation I taught myself to play Silent Night by making notes on the music in an ancient music text book, marking the keys, and pure memorization. I was so proud of myself! And then I lost interest. Maybe because the keyboard was mini, maybe because I got caught up with friends; I don't really know. Even though I didn't pursue it, I still listening to piano msuic and I think they look awfully nice in a living room!

*Don't forget to take a peek at this week's inspiration post.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Tree Trimming Party

On November 29th we were invited to a tree trimming party. It was the first I've ever attended, and it was adorable. It was hosted by one of Eric's analytics learning team members. (Analytics was held before the real school year started to give non-finance people a bit of a crash course and prepare them for the regular curriculum coursework.) I think it's great that he's still in touch with his 4 original team members.

Everybody brought something to share. There was a delicious cake with a melted butter topping (heaven), cheese curds (a Wisconsin delicacy), apples and caramel sauce, cookies, a traditional Indian dessert, egg nog, and mulled cider. There may have been more, but that's all I remember. It was so festive! Oh yeah, the hostess was also playing Christmas music and It's A Wonderful Life was on mute in the background.

We brought clementines and I made 2 paper crane ornaments for the tree (do you seem them?). Everybody helped decorate while we all chatted. It was really fun!

Are you getting into the holiday spirit? Have you checked out the Everything Little Miss 2009 Holiday Gift Guide?

*As always, click the pictures to enlarge!

Monday, December 7, 2009

2009 HBS Holidazzle

Friday night was the 2009 HBS Holidazzle. It was a black tie (optional) gala for all of the current HBS students and their partners. We had to be ready by 5:15 in order to catch the bus from HBS to the hotel. I was mildly surprised to discover that we'd be riding on a school bus (it was surreal to see people openly drinking on a big yellow bus).

We arrived at the Westin Copley around 6ish for hors dourves. It took me a little while to feel comfortable in my new dress (I got it second hand for a steal and then had it shortened about 6 inches), but as I looked around the room and saw the other girls all decked out, I began to feel like I'd gotten it right!

Dinner started at 7:00. Each section ate together, in separate rooms. That meant that I didn't sit with any of my usual partner friends, but I had the opportunity to get to know some new people. It was nice to spend some time with Eric's section, and during dinner there were slideshows, videos, and jokes about the first semester. There were lots of laughs.

An ex-colleague of Eric's made Jello shots for him to bring to the event, and I'm pretty sure our table had the most fun.

After dinner, we headed up to the ballroom for dancing and a dessert buffet. The dinner was just for first years to celebrate with their sections, but after dinner the second years joined us, so the ballroom was packed.

Everybody looked wonderful. Dressing up is fun! But know what? I think there were one or two people who didn't recognize me with my hair down (and curly).

Confession: I didn't dance. Not even to one song. The dance floor was uncomfortably packed, and I wasn't feeling the music. But I still had a lot of fun, and I enjoyed the company immensely.

I think my favorite part may have been seeing Eric in his tux. We picked it out over the summer, and I've been looking forward to this since we took it to the tailor! So handsome.

By the end of the night I was hobbling around. Heels really aren't my thing. I'm more of a sneaker kind of girl. We took a cab back to HBS, and it dropped us off pretty much as far from the car as possible. I walked very slowly with Eric, but when we were about three quarters of the way it just hurt too much. I took off my shoes and felt momentary relief. But then I noticed how cold the pavement was and my feet starting hurting in another way! So I ran. LOL. There I was, all dressed up, with my heels in my hand, sprinting across the HBS parking lot. I wish I had a video. It was an invigorating way to end the evening. ★

{Brooke took the first picture, another partner took the one of Dani, Brooke, and me, and Eric took the last photo. I took the others.}

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Snowball Snow

I should be writing about the black tie affair we attended on Friday evening, but I'm just too excited about the snow! So snow today, gala tomorrow.

Yesterday afternoon we experienced what weathermen often call a "wintery mix." Then, when it turned into actual for real snow, I was thrilled. I stood at the window watching it come down for quite awhile. There's something about a good snowfall that just makes the world seem so peaceful.

It was wonderful to wake up to a snow covered landscape. Since it was a sunny day, we ventured out for a walk in the late afternoon. Just beautiful.

I love putting on my scarf and mittens. I love the chilly air on my cheeks. I love seeing my breath when I talk. I love coming home and getting wrapped up in a cozy blanket! Yay winter! Do you think it will it stick around?

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Toaster Faces

The other day I mentioned that my brother has two lasers. Well they can be fun even if we're not playing with the dog.

Max used them to make funny faces with the toaster. It's fun to find faces in inanimate objects. :)

*Don't forget to head over to Everything Little Miss for today's Lost in Thoughts. Tomorrow there will be a holiday gift guide on Everything Little Miss, so you might want to check that out too!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Mr. Z

One of my favorite things about spending time in North Adams is playing with my dog, Z.

My brother has two laser pointers and we entertained Z (and ourselves) for hours by making him chase red dots of light around the house. He's so funny. Just look at that face!

Monday, November 30, 2009

What A View

Last Sunday, the 22, I headed to North Adams for the start of holiday week. I spent Monday - Wednesday working from home, hanging out with my brother, and playing with the dog.

I had a wonderful time and enjoyed being back in the beautiful Berkshires.

In honor of the holiday week, I made a list of the things I'm thankful for. You can find in on here, on the Everything Little Miss blog.

*click image for larger view

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Speed Demon

On Saturday I helped Jennifer Hill at a gift fair. I wanted to help out because 1) it was a chance for me to just hang out with Jennifer and 2) it was a good opportunity for me to see how gift fairs work and what goes on at them.

One of the visual highlights of the afternoon was this little girl who was dashing around from booth to booth.

You can't tell from this picture, but her shoes were pink and glittery. Too cute! Seriously. I love the way kids just throw themselves into an emotion and into the moment. Pure joy, that's what I see when I look at this picture.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

View From The Charles

Last night I met Eric at HBS so we could grab a quick dinner together before I went to a girls only movie night at a friend's. I love crossing the river at night -- HBS is on the Boston side of the Charles -- because all the lights twinkle and reflect off the water.

Last night felt like a real fall night, too. There was an appealing chill in the air, and as we walked I could feel my cheeks getting all rosy (I love that!). We ate a little burrito place before Eric escorted me to my destination.

*Don't forget to check out today's Lost in Thoughts over on the Everything Little Miss Blog!

Friday, November 13, 2009

JHill Design Studio Opening

Last night Eric and I headed over to South Boston (Fort Point) for JHill Designs' studio opening. It was really exciting to see Jennifer, the talented woman behind JHill Design, and her new work space. I forgot to bring my camera, but I had my blackberry, so I was able to get a few blurry photos. Stupidly, I didn't take one of Jennifer! What was I thinking?

Anyway, it was fun. And there were dogs!

We don't get over to South Boston very often, so I really like going there because the streets seem full of mystery since I don't know what to expect around the next corner.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Bar Mitzvah In Amherst

On Saturday we went to a Bar Mitzvah in Amherst. It was a lot of fun. The service was really lovely, and I was happy to discover how many of the songs and prayers I remember.

I was excited to attend because I hadn't seen the Bar Mitzvah boy or his family for far too long. His parents and my parents have been friends since before I was born, so I've known them my entire life! You've probably guessed that the rest of my family was also invited, so I also got to spend the day with my parents and brother (unfortunately my sister was studying for exams & working, so she couldn't make it).

The party was held at a local bowling alley. It as so awesome! They rented the whole place out, got a DJ, and set us all up with our own lanes. Can you believe it was my mom's very first time bowling? I thought she did a great job! I think Eric won both games, but my dad wasn't far behind.

There was a delicious Southern BBQ buffet and a station set up to make our own sundaes. Can't get much better than that!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Pink Snack

Most days I need a snack 'round about 4 or 5 in the afternoon. Yesterday, my snack was so pretty I couldn't resist grabbing the camera before diving in.

Mmmm. Sweet & delicious pink grapefruit!

I also bought a pomegranate yesterday. Pretty exciting, I know. I put some of it in my salad tonight; umm, yum! Have you been eating any interesting snacks lately?

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Halloween 2009

I hope everybody had a wonderful Halloween! Mine was pretty grand. (But can somebody tell me why it was hot yesterday? It was in the low 70s; geez Louise!)

I was so excited to finally wear my awesome costume in public! Eric looked great, too! I've been thinking about these costumes since last year when I saw this on Martha Stewart.

When I found out that Brooke and Mike didn't have costumes, I put my thinking cap on. Yesterday afternoon Brooke and I set out on a mission while Eric and Mike were at school taking a class (9 - 5). Curious about the results of our shopping trip?

They were really good sports and played along with my Little Red Riding Hood theme.

We all piled into Eric's car and headed to a friend's for a little party (and a lot of candy). It was a great night, and I totally loved my cape. I just might wear it around the house year-round - it's that cool!

Costume break-down:

Little Red Riding Hood
  1. cape: my mom made it from curtains she salvaged from a restaurant that went out of business
  2. dress: $4.00 at Good Will (children's section = better deal!)
  3. tights: $0.25 at Good Will (un-used in original packaging)
  4. shoes & basket: I already owned these
Big Bad Wolf
  1. sweatshirt: $20.00 at Label Shopper
  2. ears & tail: my mom made them out of sheepskin we already had (how ironic!), a wire hanger (to give the ears structure), and some $0.20 felt from WalMart
  3. whiskers: I made them from pipe cleaners from variety pack that was $3.00 at Michael's
  4. fangs: $12.99 at some Halloween store
  5. claws: $11.99 at some Halloween store
  6. pants & boots: Eric already owned these
  1. curlers (taken out before photos, but awesome): I already owned them
  2. nightgown: $15.00 at Marshalls
  3. slippers: Brooke's
Wood Chopper
  1. plaid shirt: $15.00 (I think) at Target
  2. ax: $4.00 at some Halloween store (it was a grim reaper thingy, so I shortened it at home)
  3. pants, belt, shoes: Mike's
I think we did a pretty good job reusing things we already own and making things work. Thanks mom, for ALL of your help with our costumes!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Little Devil

I'm getting excited! Halloween is just around the corner. Somebody give me a bag full of candy!

Speaking of Halloween, when I was in North Adams, my mom and I found a doggy devil costume at Good Will for like $3. You know we couldn't resist!

As soon as we got home I squeezed Z into it. It was a little snug, but totally awesome. He's a wiggly little guy, so it was hard to get a photo.

Isn't he funny?

Today's Lost In Thoughts is all about Halloween, so make sure to check it out and tell me about your Halloween traditions!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

A Miniature

When I was little, I was dragged to visited The Clark Art in Williamstown more times than I can count. While I didn't always enjoy the museum, I did love the sculpture of the ballerina - Degas' Little Dancer - that sits in the center of one of the galleries; seeing it was always the high point of field trips. The original was wax, but there were 74 cast in bronze [source]; it's one of the bronzes that I've grown to appreciate.

My family has a miniature replica that sits on a windowsill in the dining room.

I took this picture while I was home a few weeks ago. The lighting was just right.

*New holiday cards in my Etsy shop. Crane mobiles too!

Monday, October 26, 2009

A Fall Weekend

Hello! I hope you all had a great weekend.

Saturday, I folded 140 cranes to make two mobiles to sell in my Etsy shop (they'll be available later this week). We also went to see Where the Wild Things Are (oh my god, it was amazing) with friends. As we were leaving the theater we ran into a friend from college and his girlfriend. I can't even remember the last time we saw them. They joined our group and the six of us headed to a cozy little bar downtown to catch up and get out of the rain.

By Sunday morning the rain had cleared. I had some errands to run, so Eric and I took the camera on a little walk.

The weather was perfect for lolly gagging and admiring the pretty colors. The air smelled delightful, too, the way it's supposed to smell in the fall.

We made two unexpected stops:

1) Brookline Booksmith to read Where the Wild Things Are (to compare it to the movie, which is somehow the same but different). "Let the wild rumpus start!"

2) A funny little toy store that I've always wanted to visit, but is usually closed whenever I'm walking by. We actually made an amazing purchase, but I'll be writing about that another time on the Everything Little Miss blog.

So, great weekend. Tell me about yours. :)

[click the images to enlarge]

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Just For Laughs

When I was home visiting my parents and my brother, we found some weird glasses. I can't quite remember where they came from, but I think they'd been in the lost and found pile at my dad's office for a long time. We took them home and Max put them on.

He looked hilarious. This picture is cracking me up! I am laughing out loud as I type (for real). I'm thinking about how much we were laughing during our little photo shoot; we had such a great time. He somehow manages to look charming in spite of the huge specks, but he looks incredibly silly at the same time.

*New holiday or anytime cards at Everything Little Miss: Peace Cranes. Check out the site and the shop.


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