ChristmasCardSnuggling under comfy blankets next to warm fireplaces drinking and eating lots of delicious treats with our families is where you will find us all day today. Enjoy the time you have with your loved ones today celebrating the true meaning of the holiday season. Merry Christmas and thank you to each and every one of you that stop by this little blog of mine. MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Christmas-3To our surprise, Maddie and Oakley were absolute photo pros. Look how attentive they are watching Mama decorate the tree!

Christmas-5Ewww…Kissy, kissy.

Christmas-7DOWN SHE GOES! Note to self: next time make sure the chair is firmly placed in the snow.

Christmas-8Oakley immediately climbed on my lap to cuddle while Maddie howled at Dad to stop taking pictures and help Mom up!! How cute is her little mouth? *woof* *woof*

Christmas-9Christmas Card photo runner up – the squinting into the sun and that massive snow spot on my leg from falling (see above) demoted it to second place.


1 Holiday, 7 Outfits // Christmas

The holidays are a time to enjoy the company of your friends and family, not a time to stress about what to gift, make, or wear. Here are seven outfits to make getting dressed this Christmas season easier than ever. Besides each piece priced under $50 (except for the fur jacket), the best part about these seven outfits is the ability to remix the individual pieces together to create even more looks fit for any occasion this holiday season. (i.e. the lace top with the black skinnies and leopard loafers or try the turtleneck with the green cargos topped off by the floppy hat).


Hat | Blouse | Denim | Cardigan | Flats | Watch

Traveling home: The only thing in your control at the airport this Christmas season is your comfort so choose a layered outfit that allows you to relax and move quickly through security check points but that still looks chic when you arrive at your destination.

ShoppingtheSteals Pants | Blouse | Coat | Shoes | Sunglasses | Watch

Shopping the Steals: The stores will be bustling with last minute shoppers so ditch your bulky, warm winter coat for a long sweater jacket, sensible yet stylish booties, and a printed top to quickly finish your last minute errands.

MeetingFriendsShirt | Necklace | Cardigan | Booties | Skirt | Crossbody

Meeting Friends: Keep your leather skirt from being overly sexy by choosing an A-line fit and juxtaposing it with boyfriend inspired pieces: the button up blouse and oversized cardigan.

HolidayOuting  Coat | Turtleneck | Earrings | Heels | Clutch | Lipstick | Denim

Holiday Outing: Participate in the dark lip trend to add a dose of drama and to maintain a pop of burgundy once you check your coat. It’s the most inexpensive statement trend to try this season.

OpeningPresentsFinalCardigan | Scarf | Tee | Leggings | Movie | Mug | Nail Polish | Slippers

Opening Presents: Throw on a big, chunky sweater, infinity scarf, and slippers to stay cozy while lounging around Christmas morning opening presents and watching holiday movie classics with the family.

ChristmasCocktails Top | Skirt | Earrings | Coat | Bracelet | Lipstick | Heels | Clutch

Christmas Cocktails: Instead of a basic LBD, mix up your cocktail attire by pairing a peplum lace top with a fitted skirt, sparkly accessories, and a faux fur jacket. The combination still exudes sophisticated femininity but with a flair of fun and personality.

ChristmasDay  Heels | Tank | Belt | Dress | Jacket | Heels | Necklace

Christmas Day:  Celebrate in style by layering under or over a skater dress to add interest in the form of sparkle or leather. Finish it off with bare legs or tights, a belt or necklace, but always with a killer pair of shoes.


What I Wore // Traveling Home

Travel-6In just eight short days, the husband and I will finally be on our way home to Iowa to celebrate the Christmas holiday with our families. I can barely contain my excitement to the extent that I am already pre-packing in my head. Following my previously shared travel attire tips this outfit is airport ready with the comfy footwear, layers, and easy fabric. Check out my packing essentials (here), celebrity travel trends for inspiration (here), and past travel outfits (here and here) to make your holiday packing easy peasy.

Travel-7GAP Denim and Sweatshirt | J.Crew Factory Blouse (similar) | Zara Jacket (similar) | Converse Shoes | Marc by Marc Crossbody

Travel-5 Travel-4

What I Wore // Silk Pants

PaisleyPants-6Last night we continued one of our favorite Christmas traditions by seeing A Christmas Carol at the ACT Theater, a small theater in downtown Seattle with an arena stage. The intimate setting (literally sitting on the stage) made the performance that much more enjoyable and truly resonated the true meaning of Christmas spirit.

Live for the past, present, and future.

These “silk” track pants are ah-mazing - all night I felt like I snuck out of the house wearing my pajamas. Due to their comfort and fit, pumps are a necessity to elongate the legs and distinguish them from my pjs. The leather jacket and metallic heels made the paisley print fun for a date night out with the husband. Want to wear them to work? Simply swap out the leather jacket for a structured blazer and the metallic pumps for ones in black to make this look work appropriate.

PaisleyPants-7Loft Paisley Pants (on MAJOR sale) | Silk Top | Express Minus The Leather Jacket (now 40% off) | ShoeDazzle Heels (only $22) | Hobo Clutch


 Get the look yourself with a pair of track pants ranging in price from $17 to $85!

trackpants1 ($17) | 2 ($27) | 3 ($30) | 4 ($35 – also in black) | 5 ($35) |
6 ($44) | 7 ($58) | 8 ($68) | 9 ($72) | 10 ($84)

What I Wore // Christmas Card

Christmas_Card_Outfit-2Heading into the mountains to capture our 2013 Christmas card photo called for some major planning, perfect weather, and patience. Luckily we were blessed with all three plus some good laughs and memories. When dressing for your Christmas photo, you want to appear subtly festive. Leave the ugly sweaters at home and sport a combination of plaid, shades of red or green, sparkle, and/or visible layers, all of which remind us of cozying up, celebrating, and dressing for the holiday season. Check back Christmas morning for our official 2013 Christmas Card photo along with some bloopers from the shoot (i.e. a big fall into the snow). Do you send out Christmas cards?

Christmas_Card_Outfit-6 Boots | Leggings | Skirt (here, long version here) | Blouse (sold out, similar) | Scarf | Vest

Christmas_Card_Outfit-3Christmas_Card_Outfit-5 Christmas_Card_Outfit-4


What I Wore // Tree Hunting

ChristmasTree-2A major benefit of living in the Pacific Northwest is the opportunity to venture into the local mountains to search for and cut down our very own Christmas tree. In the past, we’ve proudly decorated our fake four-foot cashmere pine, which is sadly tucked away in our storage bin in Iowa, but this year we wanted to step it up and get our first REAL Christmas tree as a couple. The thrill of the search, traipsing through the mud and snow, feeling the fresh nip of the cold, debating the potential of each tree, sawing at the thick trunk, and shouting timber in victory adds a sense of pride, joy, and excitement that a fake tree in a box just doesn’t capture. This will forever be a tradition for our family to experience together to kick off the month of December. Now on to the decorating.

Searching for that perfect tree calls for a comfortable outfit fit to get dirty while keeping you warm and dry. Hunter boots to stomp in those knee-high puddles, black leggings to hide the dirt, a puffy vest to easily control your temperature (it gets hot hiking!), a stocking hat to lock in heat, and glittens to give you full finger function. Comfort, functionality, and style – the perfect combination.

ChristmasTree-3Vest | Sweater | Scarf | Hat | Glittens | Leggings | Boots

ChristmasTree-7 ChristmasTree-4 ChristmasTree-8 ChristmasTree-9 ChristmasTree-6 ChristmasTree-10 ChristmasTree-11The chosen one..our tiny 4 1/2 foot Corkbark Fir with nice thick, short needles for holding ornaments and a great smell to fill the apartment.

The Christmas Challenge

I hope you all had an amazing Thanksgiving holiday weekend full of time with your families, pants-popping amounts of deliciously good food, time relaxing on the couch, and being thankful for what truly matters. With the passing of the Thanksgiving holiday comes the most exciting time: a month spent preparing for Christmas. This year I’m participating in Chelsea’s Holiday Challenge to make sure I squeeze in time for all my favorite holiday traditions this month. I would love to hear what your favorite holiday traditions are – share or link up your December bucket list below! Make sure to check out Chelsea’s list here and follow me on Instagram for pictures of my daily doses of holiday cheer! Happy December everyone!


Wishing You…

Merry Christmasimage via

Justin and I are headed to the Brisbane airport this morning to pick up my parents for ten glorious days with them in Australia (aka the best Christmas present a girl could ask for).  Our Christmas Day will be unlike any we’ve had before (or will have in the future) and will be celebrated in true Aussie fashion with a day full of cuddling koalas, feeding kangaroos, barbecuing on the beach, and swimming in the ocean.  Wherever and however you are celebrating, I wish you and yours a Merry Christmas and a day full of family, friends, love, laughter, food, and an appreciation for the true meaning of Christmas.  Merry Christmas!

Friday Five: Christmas Day

Can you believe that Christmas is on Tuesday?  Tuesday people!  That is a mere four days from now.  Do you have all your presents bought, wrapped, and under the tree?  Yep, me neither.  Oh wait, that’s because I feel like we are seriously skipping Christmas this year (Christmas with the Kranks anyone?).  We have zero Christmas decorations, no tree, didn’t partake in any of our holiday traditions, haven’t watched the mandatory Christmas movies, bought zilch for anyone, are sweating in the 94 degree heat, and are in Australia.  I know, I know.  Everyone would love some heat about now while vacationing in Australia and I am seriously not complaining about spending Christmas in Australia because I know how seriously fortunate we are to do so, but I just didn’t realize how strange and a little bit sad it would feel to be so far out of the holiday experience and away from family (no baking with my dad, crazy card games with the cousins or stuffing my face full of delicious family favorites).  Whoops, went off on a rant there.  Any who, with Christmas coming so quickly here are some last-minute ideas for what to wear, share, and play on that special day.


GalMeetsGlamGet this classic (and my favorite) Christmas Day Look from Gal Meets Glam

PopOfStyleXmasOutfitsPop of Style shows us outfits for Christmas Day featuring affordable pieces from Old Navy

TheVaultFilesVault Files takes us from Christmas Eve to Christmas Morning (adorable!)


HolidayTreatsCookies for Santa | Peppermint Bark | Melting Snowmen


Listen to this holiday playlist and these Christmas albums, watch the ten best holiday movies, challenge your family to a Christmas Wrap, and enjoy every second with one another.

PlayonChristmasHave a WONDERFUL, CHEERFUL weekend!

Friday Five: Holiday Gift Guides

Over the past few weeks, I’ve made multiple lists, pinned relevant items, and scoured the internet in hopes of creating perfect gift guides to make your holiday shopping for any and every person in your life that much easier, however, my life got in the way.  There is no excuse, oh wait, yes there is…I only have two weeks left in Australia and I’m trying to soak in and appreciate EVERY. SINGLE. SECOND.  Lucky for all of us (me included) there are so many creative, talented women in the blogging world who have their lives together and have shared their beautiful gift giving guides.

To & From, Holiday 2012
Click here to see this 142 (yes, that’s right) page online magazine co-founded by two amazingly talented ladies, Meg Biram (blog) and Katie Anderson (blog), and featuring an impressive roundup of bloggers.  Consider this the ULTIMATE gift giving guide for 2012, broken down by person, color, personality, budget, home, and holiday spirit.  Seriously could they have made it any easier for us!?

50 Holiday Gifts Under $50 by The Budget Babe
The Budget Babe utilizes her Pinterest board to showcase her favorite holiday gifts


The Darling Gift Guide by Thoughts by Natalie
gifts for every type of lady in our lives

DarlingGiftGuideHoliday Gift Guide for the Gentlemen
The Effortless Chic makes it easy to shop for that special guy this holiday season

Gift-Guide-The-GentlemanDIY Christmas Gifts by A Creative Day
Five make-at-home personalized gifts including coffee mugs, painted napkins, hot chocolate, snow globes, and fabric platter & ornament

DIY_Christmas_A_Creative_DayHave a gift guide you would like to share?  Upload a picture or post the link on my Facebook page!  There are never too many gift ideas!