Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween!

zombie hand cake
halloween cake
Happy Halloween! Do you have any fun plans? I can't wait for our work festivities. My team's doing a skit, song and dance during the company costume contest (which has turned into a mini talent show, ha!) Hope your day is filled with silly tricks and lots of treats. 

(Rad zombie hand cake by my friend Ali)

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

4 Jackets for the Gym & Beyond

cute jackets for the gym
sporty jackets
Now that the weather's starting to get chilly in the Bay Area, I've got my eye on warm layers. These sporty jackets would be cozy for nature walks or after the gym. My favorites include ones with stand-up collars (they're like built-in scarves!), quilting for extra warmth and stylish cuts. I especially love the Zella moto jacket which would be fun to wear pre-workout or casually with a pair of jeans.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

A Really Good, Really Scary Movie

the conjuring movie
vera farmiga in the conjuring
We just watched The Conjuring and it was can't-catch-your-breath scary—the perfect movie for Halloween :) I haven't seen such a good scary movie in a long time and wanted to recommend it if you're in the mood. Seriously, there's a haunted doll, a haunted house, demon possessions... the whole nine yards. And Vera Farmiga plays a very convincing clairvoyant!

Monday, October 28, 2013

Polka Dot Jeans

gap polka dot jeans
I don't need anymore polka dots in my closet (or do I?) but these Gap jeans are mighty tempting.

p.s. Gap's having a 40% off sale (jeans excluded, boo) that ends tonight.

Vintage Paper Envelopes

vintage paper envelopes
vintage books
When I saw these oversized vintage books at a garage sale, I knew exactly what I wanted to do with them: turn the pages into colorful envelopes. (Because snail mail is so fun to send and receive!) They're super easy to make and are sure to brighten up anyone's day.

4x6 envelope template
First, print out this 4x6" envelope template.

how to make your own envelope
Trace the template onto the paper, and cut it out.

how to fold an envelope
Fold the two side flaps in. Then fold the bottom up and use a glue stick to attach the bottom flap to the side flaps. Lastly, fold the top flap over and use a glue stick to seal it after you've slipped in your letter. 

pretty envelopes
Happy letter writing! 

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Are You Google-y?

cloud computing costume
cloud costume
A friend who once interviewed with Google insists she didn't get the job because she wasn't "Google-y" enough. For example, they asked "What's one of your favorite recent Halloween costumes?" She thought it was such a strange question because the last time she dressed up was when she was just a kid. What would your answer be? Do you dress up? My recent favorite is my cloud computing costume (I'm "in the cloud," ha!)

p.s. more nerdy Halloween costume ideas
p.p.s. sexy Halloween costumes

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Kouign Amann

b. patisseries kouign amann
While Alan was in the hospital over the summer, my cousins brought us a box of goodies from b. patisserie in San Francisco. They make amazing French pastries, including their signature kouign amann (pronounced queen ahmon). With their sweet, caramelized, flaky exterior and tender, buttery insides, I'd never had anything like it. And once you get to the middle, there's a pocket of liquid sugar that spills out. Pure magic. Imagine the best croissant/morning bun you've ever had and multiply that by 100. I'm obsessed! One day, I'll clear out an afternoon and try making my own (though the recipe looks intense!)

Have you ever had one? What's the best pastry you've ever had?

kouign amann by jennifer chong

(Top photo via b. patisserie, bottom photo by Jennifer Chong)

Monday, October 21, 2013

Let's Talk About Sleep

mary green sleep mask
I used to sleep like a rock, but as I've gotten older, it's been harder for me to sleep as soundly. So a few months ago, I started wearing a sleep mask to block out early morning light. It's helped so much. I have a cheap-o one, but this Mary Green sleep mask is really cute. 

And a few interesting facts about sleep:
*Evidence suggests that until the late 17th century people didn't sleep the whole night through. They'd sleep in two segments, separated by a couple of hours when they'd get up, visit neighbors, read or write. (Can you imagine?)
*Giraffes sleep for 1.9 hours a day.
*A new study has found that when we sleep, our brains more effectively clean out the toxic byproducts created during the day. Disorders like Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's have been linked to a backup of brain cell waste.
*Sleeping right after learning something new can help you remember it better.
*Dolphins can sleep with half their brain at a time.

Isn't that fascinating? Getting enough sleep is something I always neglect to do, but it's so important! Do you wear a sleep mask? My friend Emily just started wearing one, too, and she loves it.

ostrich pillow
people sleeping in the library
(second to last photo of the awesome ostrich pillow; bottom photo via micromoogman's flickr)

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Pumpkin Patch

Pumpkin patch
Elbow patches and pumpkins
Have you gone to the pumpkin patch, yet? We went this weekend and got ready by bundling up in boots and elbow-patch sweaters (you know, to make it an official autumn adventure). On the way there, we stopped at an apple orchard for just-baked apple pie and ate it among hay stacks. It felt like fall (minus the crazy warm weather, haha). After the pumpkin patch, we immediately stripped off our layers and drove home in our t-shirts and tank tops. Gotta love California! 

strawberry corn
Dried strawberry corn would be pretty for a festive tablescape.

goblin eggs
Goblin eggs seem to be the new pumpkins in town. They're pretty cute, huh?

pink and blue pumpkins
I picked a blue pumpkin, Sophie picked a pink one and Jordan went with a traditional orange. :)

Monday, October 14, 2013

Two Ways To Dress Up A Sweatshirt

how to layer a sweatshirt
hello there sweatshirt
skirt and sweatshirt
Sweatshirts have a bad rap for being frumpy, but the printed ones this fall are fun to dress up. They're great for layering and are a nice alternative to wearing a sweater. I wore mine tucked in for two different looks: a casual one for the weekend and a dressier one for work. What do you think? Would you wear a dressed-up sweatshirt?

p.s. The Old Navy Hello There sweatshirt is on super sale!
p.p.s. When I wore this sweatshirt this weekend, only one person (surprisingly) said "hello there" to me. It was a really cute elderly neighbor who got a big kick out of saying it :)

Monday, October 7, 2013

Pretty Paper Goods

pretty paper goods
Life's been feeling kind of crazy between work and all the doctor's appointments and trips to the pharmacy. I'm starting to realize how important it is to take time to rejuvenate myself so I'm not just running on fumes. Last week, I took a Zumba class (complete with sassy male instructor and lots of butt shaking) with my sister. And then, there's my love affair with the paper goods aisle at Target—it never fails to cheer me up! I found this pretty polka-dot gift wrap and this gold striped notebook there. We're using the notebook to start a list of places we want to visit when Alan's better. Hawaii's at the top of his list; France is at the top of mine. :)

How do you rejuvenate yourself? Are you addicted to any specific Target aisles? 
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