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2013 in Review

Phew, what a year! It had its ups and downs but in the end I wouldn't trade any of the bad things for anything, because the good moments were so good. And I grew a lot this year; I really came into my own. I've always been a confident person but this year I made some pretty big decisions and I owned them. At the beginning of the year I had vowed to stay happy and not let things rock my boat, and I really think I accomplished that. There's no point in worrying and stressing about things when all you can really do is deal with them. I did a whole lot of dealing with things this year, and although I learned a lot in the process, I really hope 2014 doesn't throw quite so many obstacles my way. I really wouldn't mind taking it a little easier these next few months.

Some highlights of 2013:
- I became a real baker, working 4am shifts and making all the pastries to sell for the day.
- I traveled to Switzerland, Italy, and France!
- I kept up with my goal to read at least…

A Very Merry Catmas

Lloyd was super spoiled this Christmas! A few days before the holiday we got a package from Kaylah, filled with toys and catnip for him, along with warm holiday wishes for the three of us (thanks again, Kaylah!!). Lloyd was all over the box as soon as I opened it, and he's been loving the little catnip-filled beaver she sent him. Then he got more toys on Christmas from Shawn's family, along with some new toys from us as well. By Christmas afternoon Lloyd was exhausted!






That photo doesn't even show all the toys he got... we've been keeping a lot of them stored away and pulling them out throughout the day so that he doesn't get over stimulated. He tends to play with one toy at a time, so doing it that way keeps him focused. Now we're thinking about getting him a cat tree soon, or just grabbing the one from my parents' house. We keep moving our furniture around, so he doesn't have many climbing options anymore... he'd probably love a cat tree!

Well, tha…

Fun Finds Friday #41

National Geographic Found consists of old photos from the archives.




The junk drawer project; what's in your junk drawer?

+ A ridiculous yet well-written college essay written in application to NYU.
+ Mapping how Americans talk.
+ A look at where children around the world sleep.
+ Watch this beautiful IKEA commercial with cats!

Happy Friday!

Holiday Wishes

Wishing you all a very merry Christmas, or just happy holidays in general if you don't celebrate! This year we're not traveling (because traveling is exhausting) and instead Shawn's family is coming to our apartment for a late lunch. Shawn has a whole menu planned, and I'm in charge of dessert. (And Lloyd is just in charge of looking cute!) We are all looking forward to a very low-key Christmas this year. I hope you all have a wonderful holiday, and thank you all so much for reading the blog!!

A Whole Lotta Lloyd!

It recently occurred to me that it's been almost a month since I've done a post about Lloyd - my apologies! How did I go so long without posting photos of our beloved internet cat? Here's a dose of cuteness for your Monday!
















I call that last photo Lloyd's 'Potato Head' pose, because from above, he looks like a giant potato with a cat head. He does it all the time... well, when he's not sprawled out in ridiculous positions. And three photos up you'll find Lloyd in his usual spot if I'm sitting at my desk. It seems that any time I have something to type up, he manages to make his way between me and the keyboard, often pressing keys in the process. The funny thing is, he doesn't do that to Shawn. He has completely different ways of making each of us get his attention. What a guy! I love that we have a kitty who likes to cuddle. Just last night he lay between the two of us and watched an entire movie with us! (The American, if you're wondering.) …

So Many Cats in a Row

jacket: Anthropologie / tank top: Mossimo (Target) / skirt: Urban Outfitters / shoes: Miz Mooz
...Well hello, legs! I don't usually wear skirts this short but I couldn't resist the repeating cat pattern! Most of my skirts hit just above the knee; I haven't worn a skirt this short since my early college years. I don't like feeling as though my skirt could fly up at any moment... but apparently I'll make an exception for cats! I feel it should be mentioned that I wore black tights and boots the day I actually wore this... I just didn't feel like putting on tights just for the photo. It'd be nice if I could take photos on the days I actually wear outfits, but that never seems to be the case. Oh well! With all this cold weather and snow we've been getting lately, I thought it might be nice to reminisce back to a day when bare legs were still appropriate (also clearly pre-Christmas tree time!). Then again, it's supposed to be upwards of 60 degrees in Phi…

O Tannenbaum

Last week we finally got a Christmas tree! Fourth time was the charm, I guess... the weather and time constraints thwarted our attempts the first three times, but on Thursday night after work we were finally able to get a tree. It's slightly Charlie-Brown-esque with its combination of long and short branches, but we love it! We just used the ornaments we bought last year - a combination of red and green globes and lots of birds. This year I added the monograms from Anthropologie; Lloyd started chewing on the L as I tried to explain to him that it wasn't a toy... at least I know he approves of it! The cardinal tree topper has been atop my family's trees for years, but my parents left it behind when they moved, so I claimed it for ours! It's looking a little worn down but it's pretty much a tradition at this point.














It finally feels like Christmas in the apartment! Shawn and I haven't really developed any of our own traditions yet, and this is only our second year…

Art From Years Past

We woke up to softly falling snow this morning with a blinding whiteness covering everything in sight. (I should know better than to look straight out the window before my eyes have had time to adjust to the light...) With our plans for the day thwarted, yet again, (still no Christmas tree because the place wasn't open yesterday!) we stayed inside and made blueberry pancakes for breakfast and while Shawn worked on some new music I sifted through almost-ten-year-old files on my external hard drive. I came across lots of interesting AIM conversations with friends that I had saved for whatever reason, lots of photos from high school (mostly awful self portraits), and some of the graphic art I used to make.

It's been an incredibly long time since I've made graphics that haven't been logos/headers for the blog. Anything not involving text, really. I suppose I was a bit more creative back in the day. Here are a few of the more finished graphics I found. I clearly embraced th…

Wintergrams

It's been a while since I've shared some instagram/phone photos so here's a peek at life lately:


1. Since quitting the bakery I have time to make breakfast again! Buttermilk pancakes from scratch.
2. I think Lloyd has been enjoying not being stuck outside this season - he looks so cozy!
3. These cute S&P shakers were a belated birthday gift from my sister. She got me a couple of dinosaur themed things... my family knows me too well.
4. Philly finally got some snow yesterday!! Then it rained this morning and most of it is gone now :(
5. I've only ever seen one other cat sit like a human - my parents' old cat Masai.
6. More homemade breakfast! I made hashbrowns from scratch for the first time ever.

So basically, life lately has been homemade breakfasts and cuddling with Lloyd. Oh, and marathon sessions of watching Supernatural with Shawn (season 8 has been crazy!). And we're getting our Christmas tree this afternoon, finally. The last two times we made plans …

Fun Finds Friday #40

I love these parents for coming up with Dinovember!




One woman's struggle to reuse her penis mold cake.




I'm not usually a fan of baby/toddler photos... but these two are too darn cute!




The cutest thread organizers!


+ Now that it's post-Black Friday, here's a great post about consumerism in America.
+ The city of Venice is now on Google street view!
+ Life before and after cellphones; sadly true.


Happy Friday!!

Dressed Up Camouflage

sweater: Sleeping on Snow (Anthropologie) / dress: eShakti / boots: Nine West Vintage Collection
Every weekend Anthropologie has 'themes' that they encourage us to follow to showcase current items. We are by no means required to buy new items to follow the theme but it really does help us sell certain items if the customers can see us wearing what's currently on the hangers. A few weeks ago the theme was 'cozy sweaters', so I bought this sweater. Well, it certainly fit the theme; I want to curl up on the couch with a book and not move for hours whenever I put it on.

Also, I wasn't sure about the pairing of these boots with the dress, but Shawn and the in-store personal stylists assured me it looked cute. Hey, I'll take their word for it!

Thanksgiving 2013

This year my sister, her boyfriend, and their roommate hosted Thanksgiving dinner. It was probably the largest crowd we've had for Thanksgiving ever - her boyfriend's family were there too, as well as my brother. Everybody brought something to the table- mostly pies, haha! There was a lack of communication about desserts so everyone ended up bringing pies with them. We had ten pies total! There were also the usual Thanksgiving staples along with beef brisket, shepherd's pie, cauliflower casserole, and stuffed artichoke and mushrooms. Everything was delicious; they did an awesome job! Afterwards, Shawn and I went to visit his mom and she gave us a bunch of food to take home with us. We had our second Thanksgiving meal for dinner last night. Between Thanksgiving, the Black Friday potluck at work, and our second Thanksgiving, I've had a whole lot of food this weekend... but I sure as heck ain't complaining!





And a gratuitous shot of Lloyd in a box.




Have an awesome Mond…

Happy Thanksgiving!

My sister is cooking the turkey this year, so Shawn and I are headed over there later today. My contribution is dessert, of course! Pecan pie, pumpkin pie, and key lime pie. I only wish I could have made the key lime pie look better, but it's hard to make meringue look good without a piping bag. Oh well- as long as it tastes good!

I hope everyone celebrating today has an awesome Thanksgiving filled with either tasty treats, close family, or hopefully both! Lets all be thankful to be where we are today, wherever that is and whatever it means to you.

A Little Lloyd for Your Wednesday

When I was working at the bakery I would wake up at 6am every morning and Lloyd would proceed to spend the next few hours bugging Shawn until he woke up. Shawn really enjoyed those morning wake-ups, since Lloyd would fall asleep on his chest and give him little kisses with his wet nose. Well, since I've been home the past few mornings Lloyd has taken to bugging me instead, because he knows I'll get out of bed sooner to feed him! Poor Shawn - no more morning kisses for him from Lloyd.

Autumn Afternoon in Lititz

Two weeks ago I had lunch with Katherine of Of Corgis & Cocktails in the quaint little town of Lititz, PA. We actually met while I was working at Anthropologie! We went to Tomato Pie Cafe for lunch and then wandered around for a bit. Found some ducks and bought some chocolate at the chocolate factory in town - the whole block smelled like chocolate! It was a beautiful autumn day, perfect for an afternoon stroll. I'm happy we ran into each other, considering I still don't know very many people in Philadelphia and I certainly don't know any other bloggers in the area! All of these photos were taken by Katherine, whose camera seems to be on the fritz but still takes better photos than my little point-and-shoot nonetheless.










coat: Modcloth / dress: vintage (When Decades Collide) / cardigan: Knitted & Knotted (Anthropologie) / boots: Dolce Vita (Anthropologie)

Fun Finds Friday #39

So many fun drawings using everyday items on cintascotch's instagram feed!



Writing with milk.



I love these satirical illustrations by Pawel Kuczynski.



Photographs of fallen Disney princesses; the real happily-ever-afters.

+ 13 more fun finds on Messy Nessy Chic.
+ Elizabeth of Delightfully Tacky wrote a great post about self doubt and blogging.
+ Reflections on life lessons at 35.

Happy Friday!