In yesterday's post, I mentioned that gifts were not the best part of my Hanukkah this year. Well, that's still true, but that definitely doesn't mean I didn't receive some fabulous, well thought out gifts. Allow me to share some of my favorites!
North Face Belted Raincoat: can you believe I don't have a raincoat? Well, I don't, or at least I didn't, until my lovely step mom and dad gave me the gem above. It's perfect for layering over a sweater in colder weather, and will definitely be a wardrobe staple come the warmer months. I love the color and the feminine shape created by the belted waist. Thanks also for the beautiful handmade shabbat candles and fun necklace from Israel, and thanks Lauren for the super fun Alex and Ani friendship/sister bracelet.
Ugg Ansley Slippers: these are from Eric's mom, who couldn't believe that I wore a size six. I absolutely love them. Plus, they have a rubber sole, so I can wear them outside!
Gift Cards Galore: thanks Mom/Steve and cousins for the TJMaxx and Marshall's cards (my favorite!) and some of my favorite aunts for the WHBM card.
Silver and Gold Love Knot Necklace: from Eric. It's so pretty and thoughtful. I love that it's handmade and that he found it on Etsy.
Yosi Samra Gold Glitter Flats: I bought these and a fuchsia suede pair as gifts to myself when I saw they were half off on MYHABIT. Though they're a little pricey, they are my absolute favorite flats and will replace the pink gold ones that I wore down last year. They'll be staying in their boxes until springtime though, as they're not exactly puddle/snow friendly.
Thank you to my family for the lovely gifts featured above, as well as the "camera shy" ones (because checks don't photograph nicely/some are still sitting unpacked in my suitcase) that went unmentioned.
What were your favorite holiday gifts this year?
I volunteered to help with her marketing efforts and took these pictures over Thanksgiving to include in her December email blast. Don't they look yummy? All of the desserts above (except for the Snickers Cookie Pops) come on pretty plates, so they make great hostess gifts!
If you're in the Baltimore area and are interested in ordering something for the holidays, I'd be happy to add you to the email list- just let me know!
Pictured above: Tres Leches Cake with bananas, Tres Leches Cake with raspberries, Honey Peanut Butter Brownies, Fat Raisin Cookies, Cranberry Orange Cookies, Snickers Pop.
I come from a family of photographers. My dad, a real estate appraiser and photographer "on the side", carries around a HUGE Nikon and has been known to pull over on the side of the road to capture a sunset through the lens.
My older sister, who I wrote about it my last Yahoo! Mail post, teaches photography and shoots weddings in Israel. My younger sister, Sophie, is in art school in Israel studying photography. I'm the amateur of the family, the sole photographer that still occasionally shoots on "auto".
Although we're in different states and even countries, we still share our love of photography with each other...through email! Whether we're sending photos or inspiring photography links, email helps us share our passion.
Let me explain:
I'm always excited to see my younger sister has sent photos (of any sort really), like this one of her puppy, taking a nap on the couch:
My dad, who posts most of his photos on Facebook, will often send links to photography podcasts and articles that he thinks we'd find interesting. He also occasionally sends embarrasing photos of me pre-braces that he thinks are cute, like this one:
The funny thing is, though they're always sending photos, links, stories, etc, I usually just reply, as most of my photos go straight on the blog. I'll have to do some digging so I can contribute to the family photography emails.
Have any great photos or links I should share with the fam? Leave 'em in the comments!
I come from a big family. I have two sets of parents, two sisters, a half sister, two stepbrothers, four dogs, two cats and one goldfish (Lauren- is Pancake/Waffle still alive?). While my half sister and two stepbrothers are all in the Baltimore/DC area, I moved up to Boston after college and my two sisters live abroad in Israel.
Fortunately for us, there's a little thing called the Internet. Thanks to the Internet, I can skype with my little sister, receive silly e-cards from my mom and make animated gifs for my dad. The only thing I can't do: play with my new nephew.
My older sister, Michal, gave birth to a beautiful baby boy on January 26, 2011. How did I find out about his birth? The "It's a boy" message my dad posted on Facebook. I knew there was realistically no way I could pick up and leave for a week to visit with my sister and my new nephew. Flights were just too expensive and taking off 1-2 weeks from work wasn't going to happen. It's true, it was definitely hard for me not to be there, but when I got over the fact that it just wasn't possible, I turned to email.
We kept a thread going between my extended family wishing each other mazel tov and asking questions about my sister's health, the size of the baby and guessing what they'd name him at the bris. And then, the best part- my younger sister finally sent over photos of the newest member of our family...via email.
It's been three months now and I still haven't met Moshe Aaron. My sister doesn't use skype for various reasons, so I try to call once a week to check in. I'm practically counting down the months until my siter, brother-in-law and nephew visit Baltimore.
But...until then, I have email. I look forward to the photos my Michal sends. I download them to my phone and show them off to everyone. I smile at Moshe's cute duck pajamas and his tiny little hats. I'm astounded by the large, dark patch of hair on the top of his head and his sweet baby face. I can't wait to see him in person so I can bounce him on my knee and tickle his little tummy!
I've been wanting to wear this dress ever since the lovely Audrey of Conversation Pieces sent it my way to review. It's perfectly on trend for spring with its bright hue and girly details.
Unfortunately, due to the often rainy, sometimes cold weather we seem to be having in Boston and the fact that I haven't been out on a "date night" in a few weeks, I couldn't wear it until my trip to Florida.
This is Eric's cousin Dawn. She and her family came in from Jacksonville for a fun BBQ at Eric's parents' house. It was so nice to meet everyone and the food was delicious. It was definitely the perfect ocassion to break out my new dress.
Special thanks to Conversation Pieces for providing this beautiful Tango Tart Sweetheart Dress.
Struggle: Getting a little too focused on losing a few lbs before Mexico.
Triumph: My 6 month anniversary with Eric is today- it's my longest and most "real" relationship yet.
Struggle: The bone chilling cold is back in Boston and it's brutal.
Triumph: Coming home to a Trader Joe's stocked fridge complete with blueberries, yogurt and tamales (c/o Eric).
Struggle: Feeling faint after not eating enough today- I need to eat more tomorrow!
Triumph: The bouquet of fresh flowers on my shelf - lilies, Gerbera daisies, etc (c/o Eric). I was hoping there'd be a surprise bouquet waiting for me when I got back to Boston, but I wasn't sure.
Struggle: I'm pretty sure the right click on my Mac is now broken. Add it to the list of ailments. Time to get a new one?
Triumph: It's supposed to be 80+ degrees in Mexico, which means swimming, sundresses and sandals!
Struggle: Feeling unmotivated to work out.
Triumph: Seeing videos of my Mom telling bedtime stories to my new nephew in Israel. I still haven't met him yet, so the videos were particularly meaningful to me.
Sigh. I'm off to relax and watch some TV. Oh, and treat myself with a cookie...or 2.
PS- how funny is that picture? Way to go, wind!
After my parents got divorced, we spent a lot more time with my grandmother, Gigi. She'd pick us up from school in her fancy Cadillac with brownies in a big ziploc bag and supply us with more Beanie Babies than we knew what to do with. We'd have dinner at her house on Friday nights- she'd make her famous vegetable soup, breaded chicken with jelly on top and her delicious mashed potatoes. Her apartment was always stocked with twizzlers, and she had plenty of legos and crayons to keep us busy.
Gigi never referred to her hair salon as anything other than "the beauty shop," and though I don't ever remember going there with her, I do remember thinking it sounded like a magical place. I never really understood how her hair stayed so perfect- bright white, always in place and fluffy like a cloud. To a little girl, it was a huge mystery. I pictured "the beauty shop" with tons of white, spinning chairs and a long wall of brightly lit mirrors. They would paint your nails and do your hair while you sat on those chairs, and if you wanted, you could even spin around in them. That place is still a mystery to me.
My Gigi could do anything and always looked fabulous doing it. I remember her dressing room table, complete with a mirror surrounded by lightbulbs and more makeup than a little girl could imagine. She always wore blue mascara because it brought out the blue in her eyes. She helped us feel glamorous, even as small children, by painting our nails whenever we asked. Her walk-in-closet, filled to the brim with beautiful clothing, was a perfect hiding spot for those of us under 3 feet tall.
When I received the horrible news that she had passed away yesterday, I wasn't sure how I would cope. My extended family is all in Baltimore, and my parents and sisters are still in Israel visiting my new nephew. Though my parents and sisters will be home Wednesday night for the Thursday funeral, it's hard not to be with them right now.
Still struggling to figure out how I should be coping, I got out of bed today, put on some lipstick and mascara (blue, of course) and headed out to Boston's version of "the beauty shop" to get my hair done...in celebration of my grandmother.
We all cope with things in different ways, and after spending a good part of yesterday wallowing and eating junk food, I wanted to use today to celebrate my grandmother's life. My Gigi had many notable qualities, such as her sharp wit, her strength as a matriarch and her love of her family, but today I wanted to celebrate a trait that stayed with her even through sickness: her elegance.
When she traded her finely tailored clothing and Ferragamos for track suits and slippers, she still accessorized with her favorite jewelry, sported pink nails and bright lipstick. Even as her health continued to fail, she'd still go to "the beauty shop" and come home with mysteriously gorgeous hair.
Though my most recent memory of my grandmother includes her sitting in her wheelchair at the assisted living, somewhat disoriented and upset, I prefer to remember her as I saw her at my cousin Jon's wedding. Though in her wheelchair, she was wearing a beautiful navy suit and a gold necklace, as you can see in the photo above. My dad and uncle helped her out of her wheelchair so she could stand, just for a few moments. She was beaming.
She never looked more beautiful.
A bunch of exciting things are happening in my life, and many of you have messaged me to spill the deets. I've finally gotten around to blogging about a few things I've already shared/hinted at on Facebook and Twitter.
First and foremost, my older sister just had her first baby, Moshe Aaron, making me a first time aunt. I am beyond excited! Though I've seen a bunch of pictures of the baby, I won't be able to see him in person for a while because he lives in Israel. He is seriously one of the cutest babies I've ever seen- he has a full head of hair and my mom and sister are convinced he looks just like I did as a baby.
Secondly, I have an exciting trip planned for early March with Eric- we're going to Mexico! After a few months of below freezing temperatures and way too much snow, we decided we needed a break that involved sunshine, sand, laziness and lots of tropical juices. We'll be gone from March 3-8, so if you'd like to guest blog, please let me know!
And finally, what you've all really been asking about- the new job. Yes, it happened very quickly, but I'm starting a new job this Monday at Likeable! I debated whether or not to talk about my new job on the blog, but I've accepted the kind of position where full disclosure is welcomed and encouraged.
I'm looking forward to working alongside some very talented people, learning a ton and doing what I love- helping brands succeed through creative social media marketing.
I apologize for the excess of !!s in this post, but you know, I'm sort of excited. Have a great weekend, everyone!
This past Saturday, Eric wrapped presents to send home to his parents. Fortunately for me, he didn't ask for help. I'm HORRIBLE at wrapping presents. It must not be genetic, because my dad is a pro. Seriously, you should see his work- his corners are impeccable. Mine? Not so much. I guess now that the secret is out, he has a lot more wrapping in his future.