christmas card 2015.

Wishing everyone a very Merry Christmas--I'll be back in 2016!


weekend things... pics:

Saturday morning I ventured to the mall. I usually do 95% of my shopping online, but I was completely behind the eight ball this year which resulted in a frantic mall trip. There were certainly deals to be had, but I downed a martini at 11:00 A.M. because the crowds were a bit much. 

My sister hosted a family gathering Saturday night to celebrate her birthday (which is actually today--happy birthday, Mer!) and I can't get enough of my niece--she is an absolute riot and she bonded big time with Hudson, who is the sweetest dog of all time. And all of the food my sister prepared was DELISH.

My dad came over on Sunday and installed new molding and baseboards in the kitchen. I put on some paint, and I think my kitchen is finally done--I'm hoping to host a housewarming party in the new year.



I went for a hike with my dad this weekend, and finally used the panoramic feature on my phone. 

There aren't any ornaments (just my gold pinecone garland), but I've been loving my big, fat tree. 

Someone has been exceptionally lazy most mornings. I have to drag her out of bed.

I know that everyone is saying it, but I can't believe Christmas is a week away. I still have to finish my shopping, but it shouldn't be too terrible--I'm pretty sure I know what I'm getting. And as much as I love not freezing to death, the temperatures in the Northeast are not screaming holidays--it's been in the high 40s/50s and seems more like spring than December.

I'm loving my job more and more, and I've been getting back into workout mode (I'm planning on running a half marathon in March, which should be good motivation) -- things are, in general, pretty great. 

But despite all the good, I always seem to struggle this time of year--a huge part of me loves the holidays and the festivities and all of the things that go along with it, but another part of me has a tough a major way. 

In closing, THIS:

via goop instagram


best chocolate cake.

I've always considered myself to be more of a vanilla person when it comes to cake, but Beatty's Chocolate Cake (via here and Barefoot Contessa At Home) has made me reconsider--the frosting is so, so good (I think it's the coffee that takes it to the next level), and the cake itself is so densely chocolately...I'm definitely adding this to my list of go-tos when it comes to dessert.


weekend things.

It's boxwood overload at my house thanks to to Trader Joe's and their $9.99 wreaths. I've been spritzing them with water daily and I'm hoping they last until Christmas.

I made a chocolate cake for Thanksgiving (along with my annual sweet potato contribution), and I think it's a new favorite.
My parents and I went up to Maine and took lots of walks by this cool house--you can't get more oceanfront than this.

I had a really nice Thanksgiving and long weekend. My parents hosted, and everything was delicious. Friday, my mom and I headed up to Maine to do a little shopping (and I was able to cross a couple of people off my list)--we went out to eat, ran a Turkey Trot in the rain on Saturday, took some pics for my Christmas card and enjoyed some strong Manhattans by the fire. It was super low key and relaxing and a perfect recharge for the upcoming holiday craziness. Happy December!