rudolph the red nosed light bulb

This past Friday was our annual Christmastime sleepover with our nephews! Every year we have them sleep over to make christmas ornaments, cook a delicious dinner, stay up too late and spend some quality time without any parents around. :) Without their parents listening, Alex can be comfortable to tell us that he broke up with his girlfriend because she was mean. (He’s 7) …And Tyler can whisper to me, as I prepare dinner, that he has a crush on a girl in his class. I can teach them how to chop a tomato carefully, I can teach them what a painting palette is, and I can inspire them to love arts and crafts as much as I do. These little things make feel so lucky to have this special role in their lives.

This years ornament was made with painted recycled light bulbs, googly eyes, and pipe cleaners. I love that it repurposes household items and has that fragile, traditional ornament quality. By the end of the night, the kids were so sleepy and asking to go to bed. As I tucked them in and kissed them goodnight, they both sighed the deepest sigh and whispered, “I love you so much, Aunt Lisa”. It was dark so they didn’t see the tears in my eyes. I don’t want to blink because their growing up too fast.

DIY Christmas ornaments - Rudolph the red nose reindeer light bulb supplies

Alex painting the DIY Christmas Ornament - Rudolph

Ryan and Tyler painting DIY Christmas Ornaments

The boys painting their DIY Christmas ornaments

DIY Christmas Ornament - Rudolph light bulbs painted

The artist and his DIY Rudolph Christmas ornament

Rudolph DIY Christmas ornament on the tree

Rudolph DIY Christmas ornament on the tree - Tyler's

my outrageous, over the top wish list

This year was the first year I didn’t have anything on a Christmas wish list.

I asked my best friend what she was asking for, and the trouble started there. She emailed me her wish list (which she also emailed to her parents and boyfriend), breaking down each item down by category (books, dvd’s, clothes…). I was impressed, but I couldn’t help but laugh because of her organization and how she even included links for each item. I’ve gotten some inspiration from my very stylish friend and now my wish list has spiraled out of control. Sorry Ry… It’s all Dana’s fault. :)

Michael Kohrs Bedford Medium Dressy Tote Brown Leather

Michael Kohrs Purse (…to tuck my fabric samples and floor plans in for business meetings.)

Silk cashmere scarf

Watercolor inspired cashmere and silk scarf

American Eagle jeggings

Jeggings my cousin wore for this years Thankgsiving feast. (…and a few long sweaters to snuggle up in!)

Steven Gambrel Time & Place Book

One of my favorite designers first book.

Piet Boon 2 Book

Classic modern design.

Fun costume jewelry

Fun costume jewelry to accessory my every day classic pieces.

Comfy winter socks

Another pair of my favorite cozy socks. (…perfect for knee high boots and jeggings.)

Ahava mineral hand cream

The only lotion I will ever use.

Ikea Billy bookcase

3 Bookcases to create a reading nook like this Thom Filicia space.

Thom Filicia - bright library

Sheepskin rug

Teeny sheepskin rug, to put on my office chair or whatever place needs a comfy spot.

Essie nail polish

My favorite red nail polish.

And just for fun… ;)

2012 White VW Jetta

A 2011 Jetta, since my 2001 Jetta’s bumpers are literally falling off.

Diamond stud earrings

Classic diamond stud earrings… on my lifetime wish list.

haunted house

This Friday I’m hosting my first Halloween party and I couldn’t be more excited to dress up! I’ve always loved the holiday that gives people an excuse to let their crazy out, and a day where you can eat candy and the calories don’t count. I used simple decorations that are subtle and will make people take a second look, like the body in my side table or the realistic looking rat under my kitchen cabinets. I can’t wait to scare the people I love so much!

Halloween decorations - black candles

Black glitter pillar candles in vintage candle holders.

Halloween decorations - Scary picture that moves when it detects sound

Deadly wedding photo that tilts when someone walks by it.

Halloween decorations - black crow

Black crow tucked into the family room book shelves.

Halloween decorations - black skull

Glitter skull on the living room side table.

Halloween decorations - spider webs

Spider webs on picture frames in the family room.

Halloween decorations - gourds and votive candles

Simple centerpiece of teeny pumpkins and candles.

Halloween decorations - fake arm coming out of chest

A fake arm in our side table/chest. I thought it was funny because Ryan has a similar shirt to this. Late at night I forget this is here and it scares me every time.

halloween decorations

Fall is by far my favorite time of year, and I’ve always been a fan of Halloween. Now that we’re in a house, we’re planning our first Halloween party and I’ve been gathering some inspiration for decorations and recipes. This first photo is so creepy, and perfect for our attic window. I keep giggling thinking about my nosey neighbor calling the police on me for having someone “hanging” in my attic.

Halloween decorations - person hanging in window

Halloween decoration ideas - black crows with spider webs

Halloween appetizer ideas - Brain cupcakes

(all photos via martha stewart)

giving thanks

apartment therapy table

By now, you’re probably tired of seeing everyone’s post about what they’re grateful for. I’m late in the game, but I was too busy enjoying (very) early morning coffee, and mid-morning naps while watching the parade. This year was the first time that my parents ate Thanksgiving dinner with Ryan’s family and as anxious as I was to have them together, it was rewarding having both of my families in the same room.

1. I’m thankful for my health and the health of my family and friends. (This year my father was diagnosed with skin cancer. He’s in great shape now, but it’s always scary to hear when your Dad isn’t okay.)
2. I’m thankful that throughout the past decade, I’ve had two beautiful, strong woman as best friends.
3. I’m thankful that I have a true, unconditional love with Ryan.
4. I’m thankful that Ryan still makes me laugh every single day. Even when I’m mad at him and really don’t want him to know I’m laughing.
5. I’m thankful for our sixteen year old cat that really has nine lives.
6.  I’m thankful that we have a beautiful place to live. Even when I get frustrated with living in a studio with minimal storage, I am grateful we have a warm place to call home.
7. I am thankful that despite recently getting laid off (again), I have a new appreciation for what I am passionate about.
8. I am thankful that Ryan found a job that he genuinely loves and is excelling at.
9. I am thankful for friends that make my stomach hurt from laughing every time we’re together.
10. I am thankful that  even though I am not currently at a place in my life that I planned, I am exactly where I’m supposed to be.

delight by design holiday table

(images via apartment therapy, delight by design)