Gingle Berry Fizz - A Holiday Cocktail

Hello Dear Readers!  Christmas is just one short week away and I am ridiculously excited!  We are hard at work in our house prepping for the holiday and recently put the finishing touches on our signature cocktail for Christmas Day.  For those that are new here, my husband, Dave and I like to create a holiday cocktail to serve our guests as they arrive to our house on Christmas Day.  Last year's Blackberry Bourbon Sour was so delicious that I was almost tempted to serve it again...but where is the creativity in that?!?!  Not going to lie, when it comes to liquor, I'm a bourbon and scotch kinda gal, but I decided it was time to leave my comfort zone and create a gin based cocktail this year.  Originally I wanted to name this cocktail "Every time a Gingle Rings an Angel Gets it's Wings" but I realize that is far, far too long a name for a cocktail.  Plus, true confession, I'm part of the 2% of the population that actually hates that movie.  (Shock and horror...I know).  Give me Miracle on 34th Street or Holiday Inn over It's a Wonderful Life any day.  The original black and white version of Miracle on 34th Street that is, none of this colorized or 1994 remake nonsense.  But, I digress, as I so often do, so let's get to that Gingle Berry Fizz recipe so you and your family can gingle all the way this Christmas too. 


A Fun Holiday Place Setting

Hello Dear Readers.  With the holidays fast approaching, I thought it would be fun to share my idea for my holiday place setting with you this year.  Dave and I host Christmas Day at our house and every year I like to come up with a different little surprise at each plate for when guests first arrive.   A few different ideas popped into my head this year but the idea to place individual charcuterie boards at each place really stuck out to me.  I was contemplating how to make this happen without spending a small fortune on several small cutting boards when my aunt suggested using cedar grilling planks.  This was the perfect solution.  I found this pack of two planks at my local Bed Bath and Beyond for only $7.99.  I knew that these planks were too long so I could easily cut them in half with a table saw and get four makeshift charcuterie boards per pack.  This is exactly what I did and with my boards secured it was time to get to deciding what to put on them.


Handmade Gift Series 2017 - Gift #3 Beaded Headband

Hello Dear Readers.  I'm happy to present my third and final handmade gift for my 2017 Handmade Gift series for the holidays.  If you missed by first two handmade gifts you can check them out here and here.  With Christmas being just two short weeks away I am in a panic as I have not quite yet finished my gift shopping.  I usually am much further ahead of the game at this point and so I'm feeling nervous that I won't get everything done in time.  If you are feeling the same then this beaded headband is a great option for you as it comes together rather quickly and appeals to females of all ages.  Don't worry y'all, I understand you're running out of time so I'm keeping this intro short and getting right to the DIY.


Style Corner - Shoe of the Month, December 2017

Jolly Holidays Dear Readers!  The holiday season and all it's soirees are in full swing and nothing can make me happier!  I love the holidays and all the fun social events that come with it, not only is it great to spread the cheer with dear family and friends, it's also a great excuse to don a party dress and festive shoes.  In honor of this season of festivous, I decided to name my favorite party shoes, my Rockstud T-Strap Valentino's the December Shoe of the Month.  True confession, I scored my Valentino's for a whopping $6 on a random Friday off from work when I decided to swing by a tag sale in Bethlehem.  Bethlehem...could that be any more perfect for the December Shoe of the Month?!?!  It's like I am a wisewoman and the Valentino's were my North Star guiding me to fashion glory!  Truth is I was actually looking for a chair on the cheap that I could reupholster that day.  Instead, I ended up at a tag sale run by the nanny with barely worn designer duds on the cheap.  There was also $45 Chanel...I kid you not.  All in all a happy accident..but really the only key take away from this story is this...go to tag sales in Bethlehem for you Connecticut folk...or just replace Bethlehem with a rich town in your state for you Non-Connecticut just may get rewarded.  Anywho, lets get to the shoes.  Oh Rockstud Valentino's I love you so!  The leather is like butter...I know that is such an over used description of leather but there really is no other way to describe it.  These shoes are not the most comfortable, but I don't care!  The shiny black patent leather and the edgy studs more than make up for the discomfort!  Besides one or two holiday cocktails in and you hardly notice!  :-)  I decided to go all out here and pair them with fishnets and is the holidays after all.  However, I've worn these shoes with everything, jeans, leggings, dresses and my pajamas.  Why?  Because they are Valentino's and I can!


Handmade Gift Series 2017 - Gift #2 The Clutch

Hello Dear Readers.  I'm back with the second installment of my Handmade Gift Series for 2017.  Next up is this chic clutch bag with leather handle, the perfect gift for any woman in your life.


How to Sew a Zipper Pouch

Hello Dear Readers.  A zipper pouch is a quick and easy project for any level of sewer, so please don't let the zipper intimidate you.  In fact if you've never sewn a zipper before, this is the perfect project to start.  Zipper pouches are so versatile as well and can be used as the jumping off point for so many projects.  So let's grab some fabric and get started.


Handmade Gift Series 2017 - Gift #1 Yoga Eye Pillow with Travel Bag

Hello Dear Readers.  I'm very excited to offer up another Handmade Gift Series this year.  I've been working away testing and creating some ideas for you.  I hope you find these gifts both fun to make and to give.


Style Corner - Shoe of the Month, November 2017

November shoe of the month picture courtesy of Anthropologie.

Hello Dear Readers.  The fact that it is November already is seriously freaking me out!  I don't know what happened to 2017...seriously it was just January like two sleeps ago.  The start of November always gets me excited because so many good things happen in November, the birthday of my darling Snugs (Ha!  Dave is totally embarrassed by the fact that I just called him Snugs on the Internet!), Thanksgiving, the official start of the holiday season and the reemergence of velvet, velvet, and more velvet!  As you could probably tell by that last sentence, I have a serious thing for velvet.  In fact I love it so much that I knew I wanted to feature a velvet shoe for this month's shoe of the month post.  I took to the Internet to search for the perfect pair, but I scoured page after page and the velvet shoe options all seemed typical, uninspired and left me feeling empty.  Then just when I was about to give up and dub oxfords the shoe of the month instead...EUREKA!  When I saw these adorable blush velvet and floral detail charmers "Eureka!" was exactly the word I called out.  "What the hell is that!?!?" were the words the came out of Snugs mouth and that was the most helpful thing he could have said to me because I knew these shoes were just the bit of uniqueness I was looking for.  And as Snugs pointed out, when it comes to shoes...I shouldn't care about his opinion anyway.  Finally, the November 2017 shoe of the month was chosen.


She Be 40 - A Fizzy Bourbon Cocktail

Hello Dear Readers. Today is my fabulous Sister, Karla's 40th Birthday!  To help her and my family celebrate, I decided to create a cocktail to honor this special occasion.  My Sister likes both prosecco and bourbon so I knew I wanted to incorporate both into her birthday cocktail.  Then I thought about it for a bit and decided that Grand Marnier would be a good compliment.  After a little experimenting and some volunteer taste testing, Karla's birthday cocktail, the She Be 40 was born!  I hope you enjoy it as much as we will!

Roman Shades for the Kitchen

Hello Dear Readers.  I'm excited to be sharing this post with you today because it has been a long time in the making.  Dave and I finished the bulk of our kitchen renovation in July of 2016 and only had new window treatments and updating the artwork left on our list of open items.  We previously had mini-blinds that were put on our kitchen windows by the previous owners of our house.  The mini-blinds offered up a BIG FAT ZERO on the personality scale and were older and started not raising and lowering properly.  Here's a really bad picture of our kitchen mid-reno.  It's the only picture I had that has the old mini-blinds in it and so it is the best before photo I can offer up.


Style Corner - Shoe of the Month, October 2017

In my world, my shoes and my cookies are in full blown technicolor...clearly I have my priorities straight!  ;-)

Hello Dear Readers.  A pair of leopard print loafers have been on my radar for awhile now.  I would periodically search the interwebs looking for the perfect pair but everything I found was either too expensive or just not my style.  Then low and behold I was perusing Boden one day and came across this pair that I absolutely loved.  I mean seriously, leopard print and tassels!  For me this combo was a complete stimulus overload and my hands started to shake and flutter in full blown jazz hands excitement!  Fortunately, I was able to steady my hands long enough to text a link to Dave with the hint that these shoes would make a most wonderful birthday present.  Then a few short weeks passed, my birthday came and Dave delivered.  (Thanks Darling!)  I've only had these shoes for a couple of weeks now but I have already worn them so many times.  That's the great thing about a good wardrobe staple they go with so many things and can give even the most basic outfit a serious punch up in style.  Just to give you some ideas of what these beauties will work with, here's a list of what I've worn them with so far:


Icon Inspirations - Ali MacGraw in Love Story

Hello Dear Readers.  It's been awhile since I wrote my first Icon Inspirations post featuring the great Audrey Hepburn but I enjoyed creating that post so much that it has been on my radar to create another.  For those of you that are new to the Icon Inspirations concept, I choose a fashionable icon and then use their personal style as inspiration in a room design.  In other words, a little love their style, live their style game of good clean fun!

Style Corner - Shoe of the Month, September 2017

Hello Dear Readers.  The moment I saw these embroidered mules in Who What Wear's Instagram feed, I just knew I had to make them the September shoe of the month. 


Charming Destinations - Saratoga Springs, New York

Yaddo Gardens in Saratoga Springs

Hello Dear Readers.  As I mentioned in my post on Watkins Glen and Seneca Lake, Dave and split our time on our recent vacation and spent the second half in Saratoga Springs, New York.  Neither one of us had been to Saratoga Springs before despite the fact that it is only a two and a half hour drive from our house.  Now that we are home, I must say this may have been our first visit but it definitely won't be our last.  It is truly such a beautiful location with a lot to let's get to it!


Style Corner - Shoe of the Month, August 2017

Ah, if only I could spend all my days relaxing on a front porch in dainty little heels enjoying the view.

I feel like every woman has a friend that is their style cheerleader...someone that encourages you to find your personal style and embrace it brazenly outloud (no, no, no wait a minute....all caps OUTLOUD!)  Someone that will gasp and brighten your day with a little sunshine when you just knock your outfit out of the park.  Someone that will stop by your desk at work daily, make you stand up, twirl and display your outfit and then announce to your surrounding co-workers that you resemble a tulip, the Statue of Liberty or porcelain china.  This friend is a style maven all their own but more importantly then that they have an aura that glows and inner beauty that shines just as bright as their outer beauty.  Having a friend like this is invaluable because you always have someone to bounce style ideas off of and someone that will tell you "Heck no!  Those shoes do not work with that!"  For me this is my friend, Cary.  Recently, Cary gifted me the blush bow heels above and I love them so much I just had to name them the August Shoe of the Month!


Charming Destinations - Watkins Glen/Seneca Lake, New York

Watkins Glen State Park

Last month Dave and I spent a few days on charming Seneca Lake in the Finger Lakes of upstate New York.  The Finger Lakes are known for their beautiful country setting and vineyards aplenty.  As a lover of nature and a country girl at heart, I felt right at home here in the beauty and the glorious peace and quiet.  Seneca Lake is the biggest of the Finger Lakes with many towns and cozy hamlets along it's borders.


Creating Your Own Monogram

Ever since I can remember I've loved monograms and would want to put my monogram on anything and everything that was a possibility.  I think my love of the monogram started at infancy when my Mom's ever stylish friend, Carol, gave me my very own pewter cup monogrammed with my initials.  This is a cup that I still own, cherish and use to this day.  On the day Carol gave me the cup, I like to think that my few days old self glanced over at her, gave her a wink of appreciation and a nod as if to say "Ah yes, Carol you are my style spirit animal." 


Style Corner - Shoe of the Month, July 2017

Hello Dear Readers.  To all my American readers, I hope you had a wonderful Fourth of July!   To all my readers everywhere, I hope you are having a wonderful Summer!  I love July because it means we are right smack dab in the middle of Summer.  One thing that I love about Summer is that there are so many great Summertime combos...picnics and friends, bbq and beer, vacations and being lazy, ice cream and more ice cream...just to name a few.  Speaking of the great combos of Summer there is a new and extra exciting one this Summer, the Keds and Rifle Paper Company collaboration!  I'm loving the shoes that are a result of this brilliant pairing of adorable floral prints and footwear.  Keds and Rifle Paper Company teamed up to give us three different shoe designs but my absolute favorite is the Champion Jardin de Paris style and that is why I am giving them top honors for July. 


Master Bedroom Refresh

Hello Dear Readers.  Welcome to my new and improved site.  I'm still playing around and working on some fine tuning but I'm really excited and loving how it turned out.  Best of all, I like how it allows me to better connect with all of you as this blog now has direct links to my Instagram, Pinterest and email.  So if you have any questions, special requests for posts, or just want to say hi then go ahead and shoot me an email.  A huge thanks to my friend, Jeff, for helping me set up the new look.

However, I'm sure you noticed by now that the title of this post is "Master Bedroom Refresh" and not "New Blog Look" so let's get to it...shall we!?!?

Dave and I are working on a little refresh for our master bedroom.  We are keeping all the furniture but making cosmetic changes like, new paint, bedding and art.  We also never had an area rug in our room so we are finally adding one of those as well.  I feel like the area rug is the key piece to making our room feel all grown up and cohesive.  I think that Dave and I have a problem that quite a few newly married couples have, that problem being our house is a mix of his furniture pre-me and my furniture pre-him.  These things don't necessarily compliment each other and yet they often cohabitate in the same room.  As Scooby-Do would say "Rut Roh!"  However, I have no fear about this!  In fact I'm rather excited by the challenge of creating a new space that harmoniously comes together.  I've been working on a mood board to experiment with ideas for our room and I invite you to follow along to see what ends up working and what just plain falls flat.  Hopefully we'll all learn something together.  

I have always dreamed of a black and white room and wanted one SO badly in my angst ridden days of junior high.  As you know, Tori Amos' music just evokes so much more feeling when listened to with your best friend in your moody bedroom after school while practicing the best way to apply your Great Lash mascara.  This was not my reality though as my bedroom walls had a floral wallpaper of pink and ivory tones.  Oh vey!  It was as if a bottle of Pepto Bismol exploded in my room and dripped down the walls in a beautiful floral pattern.  In my teenage mind, Tori would take one look at my bedroom, play a note on her harpsichord and scoff in laughter.

Flash forward to my mid-thirties and that black and white bedroom is about to come to life, only this time the generally cheery disposition in me is adding in some pops of green.  Below is the mood board I created for the refresh.  Several of the items I have already purchased, a few I plan to purchase and a few are just general ideas of what I'm looking for.  I've already painted the walls Moonlight White by Benjamin Moore so I got the solid white base I was hoping to achieve.


Style Corner - Shoe of the Month, June 2017

Hello Dear Readers.  It's hard to believe June is already upon us.  I feel like it was just New Year's and I was eating rice balls and fighting to stay awake till midnight.  Ah yes, a pretty accurate depiction of my fast paced life right there...but man...those rice good!


First Blogiversary

The Greats sit on my bookshelf at home.  I hope to have as much talent as they do in their pinky fingers.

Hello Dear Readers!  Today marks a special day for me, it is the one year anniversary of when I first started this blog.  I wanted to take a moment to thank all of you.  Those of you that have followed this blog from day one, those that only recently discovered this blog and those of you that have stopped by on just one or two occasions.  I truly appreciate you reading my words and putting up with my often quirky commentary.  I hope I made you chuckle a time or two and that you have found some useful tips, projects, and ideas from my writings.  That is my goal and why I do what I do.  So truly, humbly, thank you.


Style Corner - Shoe of the Month, May 2017

Happily wedded feet.

Hello Dear Readers.  Today is my 2nd Wedding Anniversary and in honor of that I thought it'd be fun to make my wedding shoes the shoe of the month for May 2017.  Some may see this as a shameless plug to get people to wish me Happy Anniversary....but it's SO MUCH MORE THAN THAT!  May is the start of wedding season and I am honoring that today as well with not just one but two shoe round ups.  Oh my!  One for brides and one for guests.


Mother's Day Lunch 2017

Happy Mother's Day Dear Readers.  Extra special happy wishes to all of you that are mothers.  You have one of the hardest jobs out there and really probably need more that just one day of tribute.

The Mother's Day place setting I dreamed up this year.


Style Corner - Shoe of the Month, April 2017

Sometimes things can be late, Spring's arrival in New England for one and the April Shoe of the Month post for two.  My apologies for that, dear readers, but much like a New England Spring, the April Shoe of the Month is worth the wait...I swear!


Spring Fashion Guide

Spring has sprung dear readers!  Well officially it has sprung but it's still mighty cold here in Connecticut.  That's ok though, I will not let the cold get me down.  Really, us Connecticut folks have nothing to complain about.  We had two big storms and other than that it was a fairly mild Winter.  However, I still want to celebrate the end of Winter and the beginning of glorious Spring with a Spring fashion round up.  Coming at you starting.....NOW!


Book Review - The Flower Chef

I received so many great books for Christmas this year and I'm reading through them slowly.  I thought it'd be fun to share the books with you in a book review series.  First up is The Flower Chef by Carly Cylinder.


Style Corner - Shoe of the Month, March 2017

Hello dear readers.  For the March shoe of the month, I thought I'd mix it up a bit and do a special Academy Awards addition, where I tell you my picks for best dressed and choose a shoe inspired by their overall look.

First up Karlie Kloss.


Icon Inspirations - Audrey Hepburn

Hello dear readers. I've had this idea for a regular series that I wanted to kick off today. I'm calling it Icon Inspirations and here's the run down of how it will work. Each post will feature someone that is an inspiration, not just for their personal style, but for their grace, charm, charisma and overall bravado. I will then adapt their style into the home decor genre, a "Love their style, live their style" of sorts. First up of course is my number one inspiration, Audrey Hepburn. Audrey's style is very feminine and classic. Her style is still relevant and on point today which is not an easy feat by any means...and yet...Audrey made it seem easy. Take this picture below for example, it was taken 49 years ago and yet, I want this entire look. The super chic sunglasses, that gorgeous coat with brass buttons and that awesome haircut. I do not look like this when I fly! How do I look like this when I fly?!?!


Style Corner - Shoe of the Month, February 2017

Happy February dear readers!  Tomorrow is Groundhog Day here in the US and we all wait with baited breath to see if Spring will grant us an early arrival or if we shiver through six more weeks of Winter.  For me however, as soon as February hits, I start dreaming of Spring, long runs outside, daffodils, iced coffee, wearing dresses with no tights and lounging by an infinity pool at an Italian villa with a bottomless champagne know...the simple pleasures of life.  Some people may think that I am rushing things a bit, but to this I must can I not when the Fashion Houses are pumping my Instagram feed full of Spring/Summer 2017 fashion and the home decor catalogs are flooding my home with their Spring 2017 editions?!?!  Speaking of fashion, my favorite fashion house, Chloe, inspired this month's shoe of the month with this amazing top and skirt combo.


Style Corner - Shoe of the Month, January 2017

Happy New Year dear readers!  I hope you all thoroughly enjoyed the holidays and spent much quality time with your family and friends.  My holidays were a good blend of eventful and relaxing.  I love the holiday season so much and all the opportunities it provides for creating, baking, cooking, entertaining and mingling.  In fact I love it so much that I usually find myself in a bit of a funk come January.  However, just because the holidays are over and we still have a long stretch of Winter ahead doesn't mean we have to hibernate at home in sweats drowning our sorrows in red, red wine while binge watching HGTV.  OH NO...I will not let that happen to myself this matter how much I love HGTV!  In fact I am making a conscience effort to appreciate the beauty in Winter and to get out there and enjoy it more.

Appreciating the beauty that Winter has to offer on a nature walk.


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