Thursday, October 30, 2014

Halloween Links.


Let's talk about Halloween.  

Halloween has quickly become our favorite holiday of them all.  Boston always does it right, and each year the boys and I find ourselves WAY more excited about Halloween than we do Christmas or any other holiday of the year.  This is a little weird for me, since I have never really been one to like dressing up, and I remember many a Halloween spent sitting at home because the whole thing just seemed like such a hassle.  I do have one memorable costume, which was Mary from Something About Mary, and after that I dressed as a cat... for 7 years in a row!  I figured, I couldn't top Mary, so why even bother.  Of course, having kids changed my lukewarm feelings towards the day, and each year the boys are getting their costumes earlier and earlier (I think this year it was actually in August) and I have to admit I love sitting with them, searching through costume after costume on the computer, waiting for their eyes to light up when they finally make a decision.  As for the day of, each year we meet our best friends at the park with a thermos of spiked cider (shhhhhh) and after trying to stuff a piece of pizza in the kid's bellies, we head out through picturesque Back Bay and Beacon Hill in search of some candy.  The city fully cooperates with the need for a sugar rush, and closes down all the streets, and everyone gets in the spirit, some even heading out adults treats of wine and beer.  The whole night is magical and is something we look forward to year after year. 

For those of you who tend to party at home, here are a few great last minute halloween links to help make your party extra special. I hope whatever your plans are that you have a great one!  If you are in downtown area, I'll be the Mother of Dragons, running behind batman and a storm trooper!



An adorable and EASY alternative to a traditional punchbowl


A simple table setting that even the little ones will enjoy. 


Speaking of little ones, how cute is this mummy juice box? 






I LOVE this spooky wreath and am absolutely making this next year. 




10 great last minute Halloween Costumes. Some of these are so easy and cute!

Happy Halloween!


P.S. This advice columnist's response was awesome! Standing ovation!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

So Minty!!!

 Remember last week when i was debating whether or not I should paint the bathroom mint? Well, on Monday, I whipped out my paintbrush and got to work. The end result pretty much speaks for itself, and to say I LOVE it, would be an understatement! Here are a few shots of the space.










I ended up painting the moulding and doors as well, basically because they were looking a little dingy, and I have to say this is my favorite part of the whole room.  This took a lot longer than I expected, but having everything one color really makes the space look so much bigger.  From now on I'm definitely doing this in every room I paint (which hopefully won't happen for a very long time :))

This just goes to show, when in doubt... always paint!!!!!!!!


Tuesday, October 28, 2014

All Dressed Up.





 I feel like lately I've been stuck in a bit of a fashion rut.  It probably has more to do with the changing of the seasons, or in this case the lack thereof (is it Summer, is it Winter, is it Fall???) but my uniform of boots/ sneakers, sweater/ blazer and tee, and skinny jeans has gotten a little tiring.  Actually, this post pretty much sums up my current thought process, perfectly, and I have to say it's nice I'm not alone in feeling this way.  Now, don't take this the wrong way, I am most definitely not turning my back on the idea in investing in a few simple pieces that can be worn year after year, but even I have to admit, sometimes it's fun to mix things up a bit.  I think my current fashion strife was triggered by the fact that recently I've been having quite a few nights out, for events for the boy's schools, and for the first time I've been finding myself saying, "I have nothing to wear," which obviously isn't the case, but the 'ol uniform of a black blazer, black pants, and silk top, has definitely grown a little old. 

Recently, however, I stumbled upon this great site, Reformation, which seems to specialize in dresses that while not exactly cheap, aren't budget busters either.  While perusing, I realized that what I'm missing from my wardrobe is a few great dresses!  Ones that can be worn in the summer with sandals and flats, but can also be worn with tights and booties in the cooler months (which is good, because I think these are definitely on the shorter side if you are taller.)  I'm also attracted to the ease of wearing dresses, which like a jumpsuit, is a one stop shop for what to wear and makes getting ready a breeze.

 I know, wearing a dress isn't exactly a novel idea, but for me, having embraced the whole "tomboy chic" look so aggressively over the last few years, owning a few flirty dresses will definitely help me with my current wardrobe conundrum without stepping too far out of my comfort zone (meaning I can still wear my trusty blazer over them.)  Here are a few of my favorite dresses from the site, which I can't believe I never heard of before, and you can view the whole line here (which is not just limited to dresses.) 








 Okay, now I'll be all dressed up... I guess I just need somewhere to go!!!

Friday, October 24, 2014

Technical Difficulties.





I think my computer all of a sudden lost it's mind  because my freaking key that comes after "D" in the alphabet, and before "F" just stopped working! (I'm cutting and pasting "e" just to get this out!)

I have a genius bar appointment Tuesday, so sadly I will bhttp://diaryyummymummy.blogspot.com/2014/10/technical-difficulties.html off-line until then, since it's pretty damn hard to write a blog post with only spell check and paste. 

Grrrrrrrrrrrrrr.

Happy Weekend. Hope you all enjoy having a full alphabet to work with!

xoxo

P.S. These ladies are doing Fall right. Note to self, loose the sweatpants. 
P.P.S.  Watch this show. Its insane. I can't stop thinking about it. 

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Now Accepting Visitors.

Our guest room is finally done, and I'm so excited to share a few pictures of the final room with you!  I mentioned before, that I wanted to keep some of the existing elements that used to live in the nursery (the curtains and lighting) but create more of a grown up feel, that would mimic what you might expect from a beach house in Malibu, or a weekend getaway in Palm Springs. (Yes, always a California girl at heart.)  I think the finished product achieved just that, and I love how clean and light the space feels.  This room was definitely a labor of love for me (meaning I did all the labor) and even though it's pretty tight on space in there, the lightness of it all really makes the whole house feel so much bigger.  For a city dweller, you have to love when that happens. 

Here are a few pictures of the room, if you'd like to see.  We are currently in the middle of a monsoon 'round these parts, so the lighting wasn't agreeing with me, but soon I plan to get some "real" pictures  taken, and will definitely be sharing those as well. 

As I mentioned, the room itself is tiny, but I was able to squeeze in a bed and a dresser (yes, those drawers have room to open, as does the closet.)  Those sconces were meant for my room, but I decided to put white ones down there instead, and I love how the black anchors how light the rest of the room is.  This was a lucky accident for sure!




You know I couldn't get rid of those yellow stripes.  It's funny, with the new decor, they actually look a lot more gold, and that makes me love them even more.  Gray's light stayed and adds another layer of pattern, because you know I can't have enough!


The print was an affordable find, and the bedding is a mix of Land of Nod, and Serena and Lilly.  The pillow was one we have had floating around without purpose for years, and I'm happy it finally found a home.  See also, more pattern. ;)


My absolute FAVORITE part of the room is this Slim Aarons print that I have been obsessed with for years.  My husband and I went around and around arguing over what should go on the wall opposite the bed, and finally he gave in.  I had it printed very inexpensively on acrylic, from Getty images, and was floored when I went in Jonathan Adler the other day and saw that they were selling these exact same piece for about $1300 dollars.  This baby was less than 300 and it has the effect of clear glass, so when you are laying in the bed it looks like you are looking out the window and this is your view! 


A few little details. 
A ring dish for guests, and a stack of my favorite magazines for browsing.  I'm still trying to figure out which pictures to put in those frames, but I can't get enough of that porcelain stud detail!


I read somewhere that if you have a small space you should try to decorate each room similarly, so it looks like they could be in the same space.  Inadvertently, I did that here (aka I love navy and will put it in pretty much every room, every where) but it really does make the whole house look bigger and more cohesive, because it mimics our living room and thus looks like an extension of that space. Another lucky accident, but one I thought I'd pass on!


 There you have it! Our lovely new guest room, now accepting visitors. So far, just my sister has slept in there, but next week my MIL is coming to town, and will be our first official guest to try it out! Now, for all my friends who live far away (you know who you are) we are officially open for business, and no longer will you be banished in the air mattress in the LM's room! Book those tickets now! ;)


P.S. To put it in perspective, the room used to look like this! 

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Great Gift Idea: eCreamery


A few weeks after my husband's surgery, we were all feeling a little down in the dumps, and imagine our surprise when we arrived home one day to find the most perfect gift ever... ice cream!!!  My dearest friend, Maria, discovered this amazing ice cream company eCreamery, that not only makes incredible tasting ice cream, but allows you to actually personalize each of the cartons!  How cute is that?  I feel like its so hard to find a gift that the whole family can enjoy, and this one most definitely got two enthusiastic thumbs up from all of us.  I always find myself struggling to find a great present for those with a new baby who already have one or two kiddos already (because who really wants more stuff?) and I think this would fit the bill perfectly.  You could do a big brother or sister carton, and I know all I wanted was to indulge in desert after my boys were born, so this definitely would have been on the top of my wish list!  Also, I'm thinking of buying a few cartons to keep in the freezer to give as hostess and teacher gifts during this upcoming holiday season.  I absolutely love this concept, and will most definitely be giving these again and again! 

Thanks Mar! You most definitely made our week!! xoxo

 

Monday, October 20, 2014

Small Space? Put up a Gallery Wall!

 Our upstairs bathroom is one of the first places that you see when you walk in our home, and given our open layout, it is pretty much visible throughout our entire top floor.  A few months back, on a whim, I started a little gallery wall on the wall you see first, and have been eagerly awaiting Gray's move to his brother's room to steal all of his artwork to complete my dream of having one room that is essentially one big gallery wall (don't worry, his brother still has enough for the both of them ;)) 

 I wasn't quite sure exactly how to lay it out, but just like last time, I realized that once you jump in and start hanging, you can start to see a clear pattern (or actually the opposite which is what you want) emerge.  Given all the "projects" we've had going on around here, this was not something I wanted to throw money at, so rather than buying new frames, I collected what we already had, hit the clearance basket at target, bought a few mini cans of spray paint, and got to work. 

 I'm not sure how the experts tackle a gallery wall, but I've found that the easiest way is to hang the frames first, sans artwork, just eyeballing, and try not to have too similar of a color or shape near a similar color or shape.  90 percent of these frames started out white, which made things a little easier, and as I hung, I would swipe a little q-tip of spray paint on the frame, so I knew what the end color would be.  Using, gold, navy, and bright blue, I painted all the frames at once, and when dry put them back on the wall.  I then collected all the random artwork and pictures that we had around (mostly in Gray's room) and filled in what fit by size, again trying not to put too many of the same medium side by side.  Finally, I saw where there were holes, and ordered a few of my favorite prints in the sizes needed from shutterfly, and grabbed an inexpensive print from etsy to fill in the one remaining frame.  In the end, this little project probably took about 4 hours, and $40 bucks, and for the visual impact it provides, I'd say that is quite a bargain!




I'd like to say that this room is "done" having painted it white a few months back to try to get the art to "pop" but no sooner was the last nail hung, when I declared that I think another color underneath would actually make everything stand out more (insert my husband's eye roll here.)  Initially I thought it should be navy (no surprise there) but the other day it hit me that this would be a perfect room to try out one of my favorite colors; mint.  I am a firm believer that mint is the perfect shade to paint any room, because basically everything looks better when paired with it.  Given all the random colors in the gallery wall, I think this would really make what once was a boring 'ol bathroom, look really special.  Now of course, finding the right shade of mint is my new mission, and luckily the internet is not short on inspiration. Here are a few of my favorites the prove what a great neutral mint really is. 






I'd like to say I'll wait a few weeks before taking everything down and painting the walls (leaving every nail of course) but knowing how I work, I'm already plotting how I can enlist my sister to get this done by the end of the weekend.  Final results to follow...

If you have a small space and are looking for a BIG impact, trust me when I say you will not regret a large gallery wall.  Who knew our little upstairs bathroom would actually become my favorite room in the house? 

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