Sunday, December 30, 2012

Sunday Obsessions: Move Over Michael Kors

To start off, I know that Christmas was just a few days ago and I've already started lecturing myself about how I have everything I absolutely NEED and really need to buckle down on not shopping so much.  Also, since tomorrow is NYE we are doing Sunday Obsessions instead of Monday Obsessions. Don't be sad.  

However, if you don't feel that way I wanted to share my new watch obsession: 

La Mer wrap watches for Target! 

I saw these while I did some last minute Christmas shopping and the prices were so good! They look just as good as the other ones to me.  I am really super in love with the leopard one. Which one do you love?  They are $39.99 {I did see some marked down to $29.99 online}. 

Love you. Mean it. 

~the single gal~

Saturday, December 29, 2012

{NYE at Home}

Obviously before we all dive into our resolutions for 2013 there is something more important to think about -- what you are doing on NYE.  As someone who usually doesn't go to big parties, expensive dinners or make big plans in general for this particular evening, I thought I'd do a little post on some fun NYE stuff if you are staying in! 

Here are some things I was thinking of: 

Screw the Andre and Korbel.  Splurge on a nice bottle of champagne! 

{ it's not a bad splurge. mainly because if you're home alone at the end of the night like me, one bottle is sufficient.}

You can grab some Veuve Cliquot at Target or the local liquor store.  Probably around $49.99
per bottle but hey -- why not start 2013 with something quality.  

Just because you are alone doesn't mean you should use a solo cup like a college kid. You deserve to bust out the good china to celebrate a year survived and a new one starting.

In my dreams I got these glasses from Anthro for Christmas and I would serve my champagne in them.  What you can't really see in the photo is the beautiful design in white on these glasses.  Do yourself a favor and go the link where you can magnify the glass and see the print on it! Seriously! I saw them in the store and they were exquisite. 

Anthropologie Frosted Panes Coupe glass. Find here.

There's obviously no need for a sparkly dress if you are staying in, but this is probably on it's way to my house to wear with some cute fuzzy socks in front of the fire while I watch Rockin' New Year's Eve with Hogan.  No reason to look shabby. 

JCrew Nightshirt in Hydrangea.
You can also take the time to give yourself a festive mani! I love this subtle sparkle from Essie.

Essie - Good as Gold

And then you can institute a "Do Not Wake" Rule for Saturday if you are like me and not used to staying up super late anymore. 

The Housewife and I are wishing you all a safe and happy New Year!

What are you doing for NYE?

Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas from the Housewife

I hope you are all enjoying your Christmas Eve today. I can't wait to take #1 to the children's service at church this afternoon and enjoy some good family togetherness time this evening. Sorry I have been MIA lately....I've got my hands full as you can imagine or at least try to imagine.

Happy Holidays from the littles..........

c/o Simply Elegant Photography
Hadley (L) Harper (R)  9 days old

If you are in the north-Atlanta are please consider the fabulous Whitney Hendrix of Simply Elegant for your family photo needs! Please be mindful the above image is not watermarked and is her work.

Be Merry!
The Housewife

Monday Obsessions: The Cap Toed Shoe

Happy Christmas Eve everyone! I have a pretty low key day of hanging around here until Christmas Eve church service with the Housewife {thanks Mom for making the main dish and only making me responsible for an appetizer and my booze}.  Thanks to Em making me jazz up the house this year I have been feeling much more into Christmas {other than the obvious issues with my ear infection}.  I'm really excited to pack Hogan up  along with all the prezzies I have wrapped up for loved ones and spend the night with The Housewife.  Also - it will be an extra special treat this year to wake up and see my niece's reaction to Santa's visit on Christmas morning.  

Anyway, aside from that I didn't see any point in deviating from the normal short Monday post since I am sure everyone is busy and celebrating {as you should be}.  

Let's talk cap toed shoes. 

JCrew Cap Toe Pumps

Vince Camuto Signature Prunella {can be found on shopstyle}

I've been seeing a lot of these little cap toes heels and I've been pretty intrigued.  I love the Vince Camuto nude ones above with the rivet deatils!  I bit the bullet with a gift card at Target this weekend and snagged the pair below on sale.  While the pumps I have shown above are amazing and beautiful they come with a steep price. And I can't get that invested in something that may be really out next year.  It makes me nervous.  

Target Viveca Cap Toe Heels - $26 

They have a lot of different colors in this style -- green, navy, orange and pink.  I also love that they are suede because I have been wanting some suede pumps for a while, too.   Also, with a quick google search I can also confirm there are many cap toed pumps and flats out there -- all within a varying price range so I feel quite certain you can fit some in any budget. 

What fad have you been dying to try? 

Love you. Mean it. 

~the single gal~

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Blogs We Are Loving

Lately one of my most cherished activities on the weekend is sitting down early in the morning with my coffee/tea/breakfast and scrolling my ever-growing list of blogs that I adore.  I have found two recently {you may already know about them, I'm usually really late to the party} that I am really serious about stalking and I thought The Housewife and I should share with you as well. 

Right now I just love, love, love Sequins & Stripes! Liz is based in Chicago and I am a huge fan of her style and her "Girl On A Budget" picks.  Seriously stop by her site because she does all the photoshop fanciness and seems super sweet. 

I have been drooling a bit of the new Tory Burch bow flats and was so happy to come across this splurge/save post the other week -- I just had to share!  She's right, the choice is pretty obvious. Save! Those Bibi Lous look just like the TB's.  

{content obviously shared from Liz's darling blog}

I also recently came across See Jane.  Another Chicago blogger {I guess this is where all the cool kids live now?}  I love seeing how she styles herself for work, etc in the cold weather.

I mean, can I just wear this to work every day? Too cute. 

What blogs are you reading? 

Love you. Mean it. 
~the single gal and the housewife~

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Oh, Hai There. You Can Thank My Ear Infection for My Absence.

It has become apparent that the good Lord read my blog post about not being in the holiday spirit and wanted to show me how I really have a pretty great life.  I'm sorry that I have been so MIA this week but after a run on Tuesday I immediately came down with a terrible ear infection {i was all drama about it. still am}.  Apparently I had so much sinus pressure and all of my passages so stopped up that everything began to drain into my ear {or something like that}.   I finally couldn't sit at my desk any longer on Thursday and dragged myself into urgent care begging for relief.

I really thought they would write me a prescription for a zpack and send me on my way but I guess my ear was so bad I had to have some sort of strong antibiotic.  One with less than desirable side effects.  And they gave me lots of other stuff to take, too.  In the land of generic meds you know that when you spend $50 at CVS there was really something wrong with you.  It's also not very pleasant to spend 3x that amount just to see the doctor right before Christmas.  {yep, perspective has arrived}

After all my ear pain I was feeling like a champ as soon as I started my meds and had really high hopes. But a full day of work and special pre-Christmas dinner date with Em left me without a voice and my ear is still so stopped up that I really can't hear very well at all on my left side.  

I had so many plans for this long 4 day weekend.  Lots of running, reading, fun with family and friends.  I will still have some of these things but I am not sure I see a run in my immediate future.  But, I am going to be extremely grateful that my health is pretty excellent in general and hope to head into the new year feeling awesome and ready for new mental and physical challenges.   

Sorry I couldn't even jazz this post up with photos.  Sick people can't be bothered.  

Love you. Really do Mean it.  Sorry I am boring right now. 

~the single gal~

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

In the Kitchen with The Single Gal

Just checking in mid-week! We had family Christmas on my Mom's side of the fam this past weekend and I finally got in the kitchen for what seems like the first time this holiday season {I shamefully only went to Thanksgiving at Mom's loaded with champagne. Didn't make a single thing!}.  I tried two new ones that I really liked and wanted to share with y'all before Christmas.  

I don't have a standard recipe for Mac and Cheese. Usually I try a new one and keep looking for one that I just love. But until last week I hadn't really found one.  It's a lot of trouble buying 6 freaking cheeses and trying to work that one Giada made on The Food Network.   Normally, I steer a bit clear of Martha Stewart recipes because some seem difficult or a bit more complicated than I am looking for when I am ready to make something.  But I bit the bullet and tried her recipe for perfect mac and cheese.  I have to say, it was really easy and it it was incredibly delicious.  The only thing I would change is to add tomatoes but since I knew my group wouldn't be into that, I opted not to this time around.  It really may be perfect, though. 

*photo from the pin i found on pinterest*

Here is the link for Perfect Macaroni and Cheese.

It's also not likely that I will turn down the chance to try any recipe that involves Pillsbury Crescent rolls.  So, I also attempted a new dessert/breakfast item -- Nutella Cream Cheese Danishes.  These were very easy!  I recommend making them for people when they can eat them right out of the oven although they aren't terrible when zap them in the microwave for 10 seconds if you can't make that happen.   The one thing I found when I doubled the recipe was that I had a lot of leftover filling and even had a bit too much in my dough ring.  As a result, I didn't pinch the sides closed well enough and some of the filling came out and they were open on one end, but obvs still tasty. 

photo credit - also found on recipe link

Here is the link for Nutella Cream Cheese Danishes.

What is your favorite Macaroni and Cheese recipe? Or dessert? 

Love you. Mean it. 
~the single gal~

Monday, December 17, 2012

Monday Obsessions : The Frenchie Sweater

My obsession with all things JCrew is pretty well known.  While I obviously don't buy a ton of their stuff {because it's cray expensive, they rarely have good sales, and their shipping charges are outrageous} there was one sweater that I really kept thinking about this year and how adorable it was. I don't know if it's just one big fad to put little animals on our outfits or what but I am so drawn to it! 

I actually think that it's a pretty versatile item and loved doing a Google search to see all the different ways people seem to be wearing this little sweater! 

Blogger from Mix and Match Fashion 

also from Mix and Match Fashion
How cute is this?! {photo from cup half full}
I also love this Polyvore board: 

{link here}

So, in an effort at being a cooler blogger I made a Polyvore of my Frenchie sweater ensemble.  I'm not quite sure the idea comes across as well as I would like because how did the person above me make that board? I couldn't find those images.  Photoshop fanciness? 

 I really liked the finish product -- and I was pretty comfortable in my fun, cozy layers.  

Is anyone else dying over the cuteness of this item? I would link it but its sold out online so you have to go to the JCrew store to find it. 

Love you. Mean it. 
~the single gal~

Saturday, December 15, 2012

"Important Things to Remember"

Part of me doesn't even know what to write about after our nation had such a super sad Friday.  In light of a devastating tragedy I know a lot of people have a lot to say about things like gun control, politics, mental illness, etc.  but I think that it's most important to just think of those families that have experienced a terrible and awful loss rather than to pay so much attention to the individual that committed the act itself.  My heart worries a lot about the media inadvertently glorifying these people.

I saw this quote on Friday and I think it really sums up a lot for me. 

When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.” To this day, especially in times of “disaster,” I remember my mother’s words and I am always comforted by realizing that there are still so many helpers – so many caring people in this world.
Mister Rogers, in his book The World According to Mister Rogers: Important Things to Remember  

So today I am going to hug my loved ones and pray for others as I continue to get ready for Christmas.  

Love you. Mean it. 
~the single gal~

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

The Single Gal's Over the Top Christmas List

I thought I'd make an "Over the Top" Christmas list just for fun.  While I enjoy all the festivities during the holidays I really just like seeing my family and giving our small gifts to each other.  And all the wine we drink. And all the food we eat. 

But in the name of Christmas fun and being ridiculous, I wanted to make this list.  I would not be sad at all if any of the following items fell into my stocking or were placed under the tree. 

David Yurman Large Crossover Ring

Tory Burch Robinson Logo Clutch 
I think this TB clutch may be the perfect size for a crossbody purse {for me, anyway}. 

Michael Kors Runway Blue Dial Watch 
JCrew Martina Suede Wedges in Aged Driftwood

I don't need any of these things but they were fun to think about! What would you put on your list? 

Love you. Mean it. 
~the single gal~

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Vacation Re-Cap Part II

Saturday started innocently enough.  It took us a while to get up, get ready, pack up all our shit, and take a 10 minute cab ride to our new hotel.  I grabbed this room off Jetsetter and I was pretty in love with this venue. We stayed at The Hudson -- seriously right by Central Park.  You know how sometimes you worry that it won't really look like it does online when you actually see it in person? Well, this place looked just as amazing!  Just spend most of your time in the city or the lobby and bar areas -- because your room is tiny. 

Entrance @ The Hudson Hotel NYC

Lobby @ The Hudson Hotel NYC

Also -- while I was checking in I asked the guy at the front desk for a brunch recommendation.  He did not steer us wrong.  He sent us to the very trendy looking East Village area from what I can tell when I Google this place.  Peels  is apparently the place to be for Brunch.  It was so beautiful inside and so delicious.  They aren't playing around with those biscuits.  And that's saying a lot coming from this southern girl.  I want to go every weekend!  

source for pic here
Anyway, down to the nitty gritty of Saturday....because some people just can't handle Vegas New York. 

Blogger and practically part of my family Lindsey (read here) read about my dilemma of being stood up for the rest of my weekend.  Even Little A was going to come back into the city from Long Island to watch the game with me if she could.  Lindsey hooks me up with B {total stranger to me} as a good friend of hers that she hasn't seen in a while that just moved to NYC.  B seems nice.  So nice that he texted me and was willing to take out a complete stranger to watch hours of football.  

Long story short Little A and her husband didn't end up going to Long Island. So we went to brunch. And then they went along with me and B to watch the game. 

I truly don't know what I was thinking that day. Brunch before The Big Game is apparently the equivalent of a Roofie. I bet no one admits to inadvertently doing this to themselves.  Except for me.  It was just too much. Last full day of vacay, SEC championship, and the joy of Saturday Brunch.  Pounding 4 cocktails with champagne and vodka over the course of the meal and racing back to change for the big game where buckets of beer went round and many shots were taken and no dinner was ever eaten. {ewps}  

When one makes numerous rookie mistakes like this things are bound to happen that you didn't plan. Like blacking out at halftime. {That's right. The best and most exciting game UGA plays in years and I have no idea what happened. Seriously. Can't tell you a thing about it}.  So the short and legal version of that night was - B was super fun.  We all apparently went back to the hotel bar {The Lodge} and had even more fun later that night.   

I meant to be a great tourist and to conquer my fear of wandering around NYC alone.  I meant to look chic while cruising MOMA. Get fresh air in the park and hop around Columbus Circle.  Except Sunday morning found The Single Gal blocks from her hotel throwing up in B's bathroom.  And later begging Air Tran to let her stand by for an earlier flight. OK. Maybe it wasn't that dramatic. They listed me no probs, I finally managed to eat a $10 sandwich and I was able to leave early.   And while nothing feels better than coming home it really was a great trip.  It was expensive and accompanied by the worst hangover I have had in years but in the end, I wouldn't change a thing .

Love you. Mean it. 
~the single gal~

Monday, December 10, 2012

Vacation Recap - Part I

Vacation already seems like years ago! How is it that time works this way? 

You know, I think the best part about my trip to NYC is the continued reminder that usually everything works out in the end.  The trip definitely didn't go quite as planned -- but I had a blast! I left that Thursday early in the morning to make my 7:30 a.m. flight -- like I had to get up a 4.  I admit I was feeling a bit blue that morning when I left and even while I was en route to NYC.  I just wasn't sure what was going to happen and I felt a bit like a loser having to scramble to make other plans and not burden Little A with my social limbo for Saturday and Sunday.  

A few things -- the weather was great! We really only had one really cold day and even that was pretty bearable. I don't know why I worried about outfits because I spent most of my time wandering around in my boots, scarf, and purple coat.  We spent our first few nights at The Alex which I believe is pretty much in midtown right below Times Square/Broadway.  Little A used the Jetsetter website to book the reservation and I ended up grabbing a room off Jetsetter at the last minute for Saturday night, too.   The Alex was nice because we had a suite which meant we had plenty of room for all three of us.  I slept on the couch which was not super comfy but I was so exhausted I fell right to sleep every night and didn't even blink until morning.  The pictures made it look a little nicer than it was but the location and square footage of the room made up for it in the long run.  

We spent a lot of Thursday just walking around and looking at the shop windows on 5th Avenue/Madison Ave/etc for Christmas decorations.  We walked through Times Square and through Rockefeller Center and then hopped over to China Town on the subway.  We used this great app called Hop Stop  you can download on your phone and it tells you step by step directions from your subway ride and even down to street directions to a place once you get off the subway.  It actually works for other transit systems too, not just New York.  We finished off the night with a nice long dinner at the pub next door called The Perfect Pint and then went back to Rockefeller Center to see the light show on the side of Saks Fifth Avenue and to see the tree at night. 

Christmas at Rockefeller Center
Thursday we met up with our good friend Mackenzie who lives in Brooklyn and we went to The World Trade Center Memorial and a broadway show.   I highly recommend the memorial.  You just make a donation and go through super tight security and then you can just walk around.  The pools are insanely large and beautiful and were actually designed by an architect from Georgia Tech who won the submission contest they had when they were designing the area.  I wish I could describe how it feels to go in -- but I really can't.   

North Pool at the World Trade Center Memorial

After that we went and stood in line at TKTS in Times Square so we could get our Broadway tickets.  It took a while.  The line opens at 3:00 p.m. and the put up shows on the board that are discounted for that day.  It's sort of a pain but it's totally worth it to get up to 50% off your ticket price because it ain't cheap to see Broadway in NY.  We opted to see Mary Poppins (I really wanted to see Newsies but the tickets were only 20% off regular price and that was just too expensive for me) and it was fabulous!  Mary Poppins flew around on wires and Bert tap danced on the freaking ceiling.  

*not my photo*
Side note-- my Sperry boots get rave reviews. I only wore them once before my NY trip which was pretty risky considering I could have had crazy blisters the entire time.  The were awesome.  I walked all day everyday in them.  They were super warm and super comfortable.  Everyone run out and get some. 

Things got considerably more interesting as far as Saturday went...that's for Part 2.

Love you. Mean it.

~the single gal~

Sunday, December 9, 2012

De-Grinching Weekend + Holiday Home Decor

Well, a lot has come to pass in the living room since my post about being a bit Grinchy and not wanting to even decorate this year.  Since Em is here for a while now as my roomie she was pretty adamant that we get in the mood and decorate this house.  So Friday afternoon Em crawled through Michael's gathering craft supplies while I was at work and I came home this past weekend to drink wine, make anything and everything that involved glitter, and get some sort of a tree up.  All while eating leftover garlic rolls {thanks Jimmy James}.  

It was pretty darn fabulous.  We finally finished all of our project earlier this morning.  I am really pleased with how it turned out -- all thanks to Em's vision!  

I remembered I had a little Charlie Brown-eque tree in the garage that we toted out rather than dealing with the gigantic one.  Also, we painted two canvases with chalkboard paint.  This was a great idea of Em's as we can now erase them and use them for future parties/holiday decor.  So I guess we just have to plan all those 2013 parties now. 

Little Tree and "Santa, It's a long story..." chalkboard.

This is probably my favorite -- the bookshelf re-vamp.  Em looked at a lot of stuff on Pinterest and we were both really drawn to one pin where someone drew the outline of a stag on a canvas and covered it in glitter.  I think hers turned out beautifully and I love our tall and skinny chalkboard canvas where she drew a simple Christmas tree.  We just rearranged these items with some stuff already downstairs. 

Glitter stag + canvas with chalkboard paint for our skinny Christmas tree. 

This photo was a little off center and it's a bit grainy due to the Instagram filter but I don't have a fancy camera like The Housewife.  We put tons of glitter on letters we cut out from foam board to hang between our stockings and put up a spare strand of colored lights with some mercury glass candle holders. 

The "Merry" Mantle
I even managed to wrap those presents you see under the tree and I'm almost done Christmas shopping.  Even better -- I'm grateful for friends that do all they can to make my life better and cheer me up -- especially this time of year.  

Love you. Mean it. 
~the single gal~

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Remember When We Thought We Had Time for a Book Club?

I remember earlier this year when The Housewife and I thought we were going to be super on top of a book club of our own making.  It was incredibly short lived.  Not that we haven't been reading machines all year, it's just that it ended up being really hard to get 4 people together that didn't even live that close or have remotely similar schedules.  

So here's what I've been reading. But since I'm on a kick y'all leave some comments on what should come next! It's getting cold out there so other than those few days a week I may need to get out and run you will find me curled up inside by the fire as our December heat wave has suddenly disappeared here in Atlanta. 

After reading Clockwork Angel I immediately jumped the second book in Cassandra Clare's series and also read it in less than a week.  And actually after googling this cover I realized that the third one appears to be out as well.  Add some YA Literature to your life people -- John Green's The Fault in Our Stars just won fiction book of the year.  Like out of all fiction books.  That is HUGE! {how weird does that word look in all caps? just me? Ok.}

I am currently in the middle of Seraphina by Rachel Hartman.  I mean, I like sci-fi YA stuff as much as anyone but I'm having a hard time getting into this one.  It's sort of like that Disney movie "How to Train Your Dragon" but not.   Maybe its because I don't have my Kindle and I've been trying to read it on my phone? I just don't love it. 

I am less than 100 pages from the end of this book that I only even started while I was traveling in NYC and read during some down time.  It. Is. So. Good.  Every time I read a book by Susanna Kearsley I am all oh-I-love-this-one-best-of-all-it-was-amazing.  I love all her stuff. Go get all her books now {if you like time travel/historical/kinda romancy books that is}.  She has similar themes for all of them but they are all very different at the same time. If that makes sense. Which it probably doesn't.  

The Housewife and I are always looking for a good book -- tell us what you are reading! 

Love you. Mean it. 
~the single gal~

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Wednesday Ramblings and Fun with Some ECards

I had really great intentions of doing my vacation re-cap dureing the week but I wanted to spend some more time on it so it will be sometime this weekend. I have to confess that coming back to work and trying to get back to the grind has drained me a bit {read: I started watching The Bridges of Madison County when I got home from the gym tonight and ran out of time}.  It's always good to get back to the normal routine after vacation but it seems extra hectic with the holidays upon us.   

A few things for this week so far: 

- There was a certain amount of disbelief when I came back to work with an email from TDH that he sent to me on Saturday night...that he hoped I was enjoying NYC and some other crap about the game.  I've been glaring at it in my inbox all week.  It's doubtful I will respond.  It doesn't even come close to an acceptable apology.  Not even close. 

- I am determined to make my master Christmas list and complete all shopping except for small stocking stuffer items by Sunday.  

And seriously I'm not trying to be a Grinch this year but I haven't put any decorations out and I don't think I will.  Ok -- I take that back.  I unpacked my holiday wine glasses.  Those are out and currently in heavy rotation.  I just feel like the holidays are super hard for single people {maybe that's just me}.  It's not that my family isn't close by and that I don't get to see them -- I do and we have Christmas practically all of December -- but it's not the same.   

- In honor of my love for hot chocolate I have signed up for the Atlanta Hot Chocolate 15k {9 mi} for January 13th.  This leaves me a little less than 6 weeks out with not much running since the half  marathon in October so it may not be a stellar performance but I think I can easily handle the distance.  

What are y'all up to this week? What are you tired of? Anyone done with their shopping? Training for any races? 

Love you. Mean it. 
~the single gal~

Monday, December 3, 2012

Monday Obsessions: Planning

It's that time of year again.  Time to start looking ahead into 2013.  For me that means grabbing my planner at the beginning of December at the latest so that I can start the new year feeling organized -- which lasts for like 2 days.  

Of course, if you know me you know I obsess over planning things 24/7 and not just on Mondays. That being said -- I just ordered my new 2013 planner and I adore it!  I am currently still using my planner from Maybooks  purchased for this year that I really loved because I was able to design it myself, but it was a bit small and I wanted some more space.  Also - no tabs for addresses and phone numbers and such in the back of the prior one, which I didn't love.  But if you don't need those things those are a great option, too! 

You can find it here.

Maybooks has tons of designs and you can get planners, notebooks, meal journals, etc and make them just how you want -- but here is a quick pic of one of those.  {link is posted above}

My other favorite planner is the paper one put out by kate spade every year.  This one is too cute!  And the last one I had was super durable and also had sections for notes/addresses/phone numbers. 

Has anyone used the Erin Condren planners? I pondered one for a minute but I was a little overwhelmed by the detail.  Of course, we may have to get one for The Housewife since her family has multiplied so much in the last few years.  Can't have her missing our runs, coffee dates, and forgetting to pencil in girl time for mani/pedis along with school, groceries, errands and keeping everyone straight in her household! 

Happy Planning! 

Love you. Mean it. 
~the single gal~