Saturday, December 4, 2010

gingerbread night

My mom loves Christmas. I sat here for a moment trying to figure out a way to describe exactly how much she loves Christmas, but I just can't put it into words. For example; the day that 100.3 WNIC starts playing Christmas music on the radio might as well be a holiday to my mother. I love it. To add to all of the decorations, music, gifts, activities this year she decided we (me, mom, and my sister) were going to have gingerbread house night. I've never made a gingerbread house before... so I was excited.

She bought two kits (yea.. we cheated). 2 for the 3 of us... This is the sad part. My mom knows that I'm a perfectionist, who's particular about details no matter what it is. So she gets two - one for me, one for mom and amanda, so I wouldn't take it over! Of course it was a big joke. But I promise I'm not THAT bad! Anyways, here's the result. It was fun, I recommend it :)

the mess:




mom & amandas:




Tuesday, November 30, 2010

(early) merry xmas to me.

new proud owner of a canon rebel - again.
to whoever stole my last camera: screw you, bah humbug!

I decided to take advantage of the Black Friday sales. I got the Canon Rebel T2i that came in a bundle with the same lenses I had before, a better case than I had before, and an 8GB card. Not bad. I'm so so happy to have a camera again. It made me sad to think of not having it through the holidays. I feel complete again. Needless to say, I'll never leave it in my car again, or out of my sight for that matter.

hope everyone had a great thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

i heart anthropologie.

for your christmas lists:

I'll take one of each, please.
I'm truly in love with Anthropologie. They have the user experience down to a science. I could just move in and live there. Very seldom do I actually step foot in the store. I'm usually one to just drool from a distance looking through their windows - which are always adorned with the most amazing displays. Typically walking through is torturous to me, considering their prices don't match my lifestyle. However, yesterday while shopping with my grandmother and sister, we stepped foot into the magical world of anthropologie. I picked out a few Xmas treats. {And I (re)fell in love.}

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

oh happy day.

I received a call from my insurance company today.

{Assurant is the best, we use them for our rental insurance, they're cheap and they've been great to work with. I spoke with all american people on the phone, and one specific lady, Dawna, was always calling me back to update me and was so kind.}

THEY COVERED MY CAMERA!!! (see previous post about the tragedy)

The lovely Dawna told me that I should be receiving my check in the mail next week. After the deductible and depreciation deductions, it won't nearly cover the replacement. BUT anything helps. And now I have my eye on this beauty. I'm a Canon Rebel girl. This is for sure.

I had the Xsi before, now I'll be able to shoot HD video too! I'm pretty excited to get it. It's been sad with out a camera. I've only been using my phone. And while I'm at it I should share my awesome experience updating to the iPhone 4...

my awesome iphone upgrade story:
A friend from work told me that he sold his old iphone for $250. I didn't believe him until I went on craigslist and saw people selling my exact phone for $250+. I looked at my account and found out I was eligible for upgrade to the iphone 4 for $200. Did some quick math and realized, I can make PROFIT on this??? After I posted my phone on craigslist I literally had a buyer within 5 minuets, sold it to him the next day for $250 cash, and had a brand new iphone 4 within 24 hours of the thought even crossing my mind. If you are in the position to do this, I highly recommend it. (but always be safe when it comes to craigslist. there are a lot of creepos out there)

Saturday, October 23, 2010

friday. october twenty two.

I followed myself around all day. I documented the mundane, the precious, the working... all of it. You may be interested, or you may be bored to tears. If you are bored to tears, apologies in advance.

(*no one likes a copy cat - but I have to admit that I am 100% stealing this idea from one of my favorite bloggers. I haven't decided if I'll link it or not, her life is much more glamorous than mine*)

October 22, 2010:

6:00am: smell of coffee, goodbye kiss from eric.

7:30-8:00: snooze 4x, shower, get ready.

This is my product line up from left to right in chronological order.
1. Complex 15 (amazing face moisturizer) 2. Origins: Quick, Hide!* 3 & 4. Bare Minerals 5. CG Bronzer 6. TooFaced: Rich Bitch 7. Maybelline Define-a-Lash

*(I swear by this stuff. I have used it since the 5th grade: A bully called me 'death' because I have really dark circles under my eyes and my mom - being amazing like she is - bought my this concealer and some natural blush. She had the Origins lady teach my how to use it. She told me that I was beautiful just the way I am, but if it would make me feel better, I could use it. And I still am, 13 years later.)


The great boot debate. I never wear heals, but I was seriously contemplating wearing the beauties on the left which are hand-me-downs from my aunt. {who is way more stylish than I'll ever be} I went with my favorite Steve Madden riding boots. Shawl cardigan from jcrew last winter. Jeans are the only pair of American Eagle jeans that have ever come close to being long enough. Scarf is also a hand-me-down from my grams.


I left our condo and it was a beautiful (but COLD) autumn day in Michigan. This here is my weak attempt at some fall decor on our patio. The yellow mums and the smaller pumpkin are a surprise from my amazing and kind land lord. Who I'd like to adopt as an aunt.


Then I get in my car, which is only 5 years old and has 107,600 miles on it. The poor thing has been coated in mud for the past 4 weeks now (dirt roads on a rainy day are a pain). I think she cries at night.

30 minute drive. Arrive at work. And make it to my desk - that has collected an ever growing amount of toys and randomness over the last 3.5 years.

From L to R: Two of my favorite books - 1000 Packaging Designs & Design Matters: Packaging, toy truck from The UPS Store print shoot, Marley Coffee (given to me by Bob Marley's son, Rohan, himself), Killians Irish Red & Heineken bottles (necessities for late nights in advertising) killians label is colored with sharpies and the heini bottle has a flower in it, various toys, and a framed photo of me and my beautiful little sister.


My little sister made the drive to come have lunch with me {at Potbelly's! - Uptown salad is to die for!} and visit for the afternoon! My salad didn't last long enough to take a picture of.


Meet Amanda (who is also more stylish than I)
She's reading the blog that inspired this randomness. Notice our matching purses? Recently I got sucked into the Vera Bradley trend. {my mother, grandmother, and sister are all obsessed}


My grandmother who has been into Vera Bradley since the 80's when the company was born, bought me this purse (my very first vera purse - oh my!) It's grown on me too. I love the style, and it's so lightweight! Mailbag in Dahlia.


Then Amanda left and I decided to victimize Rachel, my lovely copywriter partner. We discuss all sorts of randomness. She recently got married in August so she's been a great sounding board for wedding ideas. We talk about crazy dreams, our goals in life, our love for animals, and pretty much every single thought that come to our minds - it get's pretty ridiculous. When you're stuck in a gray box together for 8+ hours a day, that happens. She just started a blog of her own not long ago. Check it out!


While I'm at it, I might as well share that I'm jealous of her owl mug. super cute.


I never wear gold, but I love this thing. If you haven't explored Forever 21 or For Love 21... you gotta. I think this thing was like $3. Love it.


Once I got through the craziness of the day it's off to meet one of my most favorite persons, Jenna, at one of my most favorite restaurants, California Pizza Kitchen. Two Bell's Oktoberfest's please! (If you haven't had the privilege of Michigan brews, I apologize) Look how cute she is...


We split an Original Chopped Salad and The Works pizza. DELICIOUS. If you've never been to CPK, you're missing out. It's the best. We chatted about work, a lot, our fellas, and more randomness.


Then, we went on to Borders Books to have our first business meeting. Jenna and I call each other 'ninja'. That story is for another day. Short version: we used to be partners in advertising and we always had to initial our work Niki & Jenna/ N&J... somehow, someway, that morphed into "ninjas". It stuck.

We talked about future classes we want to take (we crossed 'motorcycle endorsement class' off the list in September - we are both legally allowed to drive motorcycles on the road. watch out!) And we talked about our bucket list, and then we did some serious brainstorming on a business endeavor that I'll hopefully be able to tell you more about someday! Take note: GOOD magazine = awesome goodness. Here is our to-do list that Jenna so beautifully drew up for us.


GOOD magazine featured this book: Rework. We previewed it in the store and decided to order it on amazon. 2 lovely books should be on my doorstep next week. One for each of us. (a girl's gotta save money when she can - sorry Borders. Amazon won) We can't wait to read it. And if you're making fun of us for hanging at Borders on a Friday night, ordering books and talking about our future, - I don't blame you! :)


We commence our meeting and feel inspired.

I finally picked up Eric's wedding band that has been sitting at the jewelers for 2 months now. It's a chisel cut Tungsten Carbide ring with satin finish and beveled edges. I love it. This is what I'd like if I was a boy. He picked it out all by himself too. From Medawar Jewelers.


Then it's on to meet with friends and my fiance at a Tanya and Justin's house. There was a lot of laughing, baked goods (Tanya is an amazing host), autumn seasonal beer (Leinenkugels Oktoberfest - yummy), and singing/guitar playing.


And when I say singing/guitar playing, I wasn't kidding. I even got a song all to myself, thanks to Justin:

The video was quite possibly the highlight of my night. My cheeks hurt from laughing.
I should mention how awesome Tanya is, I'm sorry I didn't take a good picture of her for this. She loves to paint nails, and every time I see her I get freshly painted nails! She should open up her own salon. This time the choice color was 'Light my Saphire' by OPI. Love it.


Meet my friend Tommy, he's a big ol' goofball. And we take goofy picture together all the time. That's just what we do.

Picture 1

After lots of shenanigans at Tanya & Justin's house we were off to Legends, a local bar where all of our friends were. Our one friend, Cathy, has twin nephews that were celebrating their 21st birthdays and there were a ton of people there to join. Might of had something to do with the fact that there was a stripper waiting in the party bus, in the parking lot, for the boys and everyone who wanted to join the show.

These are my friends Kurt, and the infamous Bob S - who is always a good time and plenty of entertainment (if you can't see that for yourself). Thumbs up.


Well, if you know my friends, of course they wanted to go see a stripper. To them it's more of a joke than anything. We got on the bus - which was jam packed. The 'exotic dancer' was um, well, interesting. The bus was crammed and eventually we found out they were leaving the parking lot. So we got off the bus (thank goodness) *Sidenote: this is not something that occurs often on my weekends. I should also mention that I'm not crazy about bars these days. However, the people watching is amazing. I should have documented that now that I think about it. This is Tommy, very excited for the stripper.


This is Garret, it's his Birthday too. You can tell by the party attire. Note the tuxedo t-shirt, hoodie, and suit jacket. He always has the best outfits found from the local thrift store. He told me that some day he'll take me and teach me how to shop thrift stores like he does. Good stuff.


We left Legends, made a pit stop at Mickey D's, and stayed the night at Eric's brother's house nearby. I watched HGTV and crashed on the couch. It was a very long and random day, but a good day.

Monday, October 18, 2010

day of the dead.

For once in my life I knew what I wanted to be for Halloween this year earlier than 1 week prior to all the festivities. My friend, Brian, showed me an illustration magazine when I came across Sylvia Ji and her Day of the Dead paintings. They're gorgeous and creepy at the same time. If you know me... you know that I love to take on crazy tedious craft projects. So naturally as soon as I laid eyes on the intricate face painting I was determined to dress up as a Day of the Dead girl for Halloween!
Eric and I had a Halloween party to go to this past Saturday and I was really excited to try it out. It took a long time to do (like 2.5/3 hours), but it was a ton of fun. Probably one of my favorite costumes ever!
My Inspiration:
- face paint (for white & green)
- acrylic paint for detials
- green shimmer
- black clip in hair piece
- black hair spray
- white hair spray
- funky feathery eyelashes
- silk flower

a little early, but

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

decisions. decisions.

I thought choosing a color palette for the wedding would be easy. Luckily my girls chose a turquoise dress that I absolutely love (I'm in love with all shades of turquoise) so I have one color already decided on. You'd think that'd make it easier for me... not the case. I keep going round and round with what complimentary colors I'd like to use. I guess that's the one downfall of being a designer and designing your own wedding; when it's your own project it's hard to make decisions and stick with them!

This weekend I came across a new (new to me) wedding blog that has these great color palettes sprinkled throughout their posts. Each one is inspired by a photograph and I absolutely love them. Here are some of my favorites, one is actually quite similar to the scheme I'm leaning towards. Thought I'd share:

Thursday, September 2, 2010

farewell my friend.

I'll admit it. I'm a "it will never happen to me" type of person. And that's why I'm still in denial that my Canon Rebel was stolen out of my car last week. Just typing that out puts a big knot in my stomach. So to anyone that reads this; please think twice about what you keep in your car. I can't be sure if it was locked or not when it was stolen (I'm typically super anal about locking my car. It's a good habit of mind). But it's a fact that if someone wants to get in your car with out leaving much evidence, it's totally possible. I didn't notice it was missing until Friday when we were heading for a trip up north and we were already on our way. I was nervous but I thought "oh I must have taken it inside the house." So when we got home Sunday and I searched our place - no camera. [balled my eyes out] Called any place it could have possibly been and no luck. I knew the whole time that it had been in my car. I guess I was just hoping for a miracle. So I'm not sure where or when exactly it was stolen but I'm going to definitely try and make a police report and claim it under either my Auto insurance or my Rental Insurance. My iPod is gone too, but I was hoping that I just misplaced that too, (I guess you can say I was really hoping for a miracle) If anyone has any advice/experience with this sort of thing it'd be greatly appreciated. In the grand scheme of things I understand it's just an object... but when it's a very expensive prize possession of yours that you just can't afford to replace right now - it's devastating. I can only hope for a happy ending now. Let's hope that my insurance pulls through for a win. (I never use my insurance and karma has to be on my side - this is good, right?)

Thursday, August 19, 2010

a darling family.

A while back one of my best friends (and bridesmaid), Crystal and I decided to do a family photo session with her family. They've never had a professional set of photos taken of all 4 of them, and I was honored to do their first. I was so excited and happy to have one of the most darling families ever to pose for me! They made it so easy.
Meet Makayla, Joe (Eric's best man), Crystal, and Emma:
Photography is just a hobby right now. But the whole experience definitely got me thinking about doing this more often. I can't ever see calling myself a professional, but for now it's great to do for friends and family!