On the 12th Day of Blogmas: Baking & Bond, James Bond

Blogmas

Happy Saturday, I hope you’re having a wonderful weekend! I mentioned a few posts back that I take one weekend each year to watch James Bond films & bake Christmas goodies. Today was supposed to be the day, the Bond marathon was a success but the baking part an abject failure. In my defense, I was waiting for the butter to soften πŸ˜‰ So instead of sharing the goodies I should have made, I’m sharing my Top 5 Bond films. I’m a James Bond fanatic, it started with the books in middle school & films when I was in college. I have no idea why it took me so long to watch them, probably because they weren’t cool by liberal, college female standards. I still listen to the books, there’s something wholesome & nostalgic about the old stories even though the material is a bit racy. Now, I could rank all 26 films but that seems crazy πŸ˜‚

Number 5: Skyfall (2012) This is my favorite Daniel Craig adaptation by far. I thought his debut in Casino Royale fell flat considering how good the book is. Craig is not my favorite Bond, he plays the role a lot grittier & tortured than the international men of mystery from yester year but he’s an interesting Bond. This one finds M at the center of an assassination plot spearheaded by a former agent. The villain being someone on the inside rather than some over the top, super villain made this one tense & his story is so tragic. It’s all fun & games until the cyanide capsule fails.

Number 4: Moonraker (1979) But I do love a bizarre, over the top villain too πŸ˜‚ When a space shuttle is stolen, Bond is sent to investigate the ultra-wealthy, eccentric Hugo Drax. From Rio to Venice, Bond is pursued by Jaws, a hulking brute of a man with jaws of steel. There’s a super cheesy intergalactic battle but 007 saves the human race in the knick of time, again. Roger Moore is a decent Bond if a little nerdy. This film has been lauded as the worst Bond film, it’s a little nutty but still a fun watch.

Number 3: Goldfinger (1964) Bond is investigating Auric Goldfinger, yet another businessman bent on world domination. He invites Bond to his horse farm for drinks…& murder. Iconic scenes include the poor girl suffocated in gold & Odd Job with his deadly hat.

Number 2: Goldeneye (1995) Hands down the only Pierce Brosnan film I can stand – the other ones are just bananas, even for Bond πŸ˜‚ 007 goes up against the only person who can whip his ass, 006. Bond has to take down his former ally before he uses a stolen satellite to destroy the earth. I don’t love the Brosnan era films because I believe this was the start of the prolonged sex scenes. The older films just gave cheeky hints as to what was happening, they kept it classy & fun by comparison.

Number 1: On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969) My favorite Bond, George Lazenby appeared in exactly one film & it’s my favorite by far. He had some big shoes to fill following Connery & did a bang up job in my opinion. Bond infiltrates the international crime syndicate SPECTRE by securing an invitation to a compound in the Alps by one Ernst Stavro Blofeld. Blofeld is executing a bio-warfare plot that would wipe out global economies. I love the isolated setting, Bond’s midnight escape on skis & nail biting car chases. I think this is the one Bond storyline where he could have been killed but he came through without any fancy gadgets πŸ˜‰ This film also put an end to the ever revolving cast of Bond girls…almost…

Bond to me, is just good fun. Some of the older films haven’t perhaps aged well but I’m also applying my modern day morals & values to very different times. I think that is something to consider when watching these films – just enjoy them for what they are. Are you a Bond fan? What’s your favorite film? I’ll post my baked goods just as soon as I get around to making them ❄

On The 11th Day of Blogmas: My Christmas Wishlist

Blogmas

This is a PSA to get your holiday orders in if you have not done so already (& plan on them arriving late). I have a friend who delivers packages, he sent me a picture of their warehouse – waist deep palettes from wall to wall, people! They’ve had to double up on trucks on his route due to the sheer volume & how long it’s been taking to get everything delivered. Also, I would not depend on the retailer ‘Arrives Before Christmas’ cut off date because they are making promises that they simply cannot keep. Anyway, I usually order my own gifts for Christmas/birthday right about now but have decided to wait until after the new year to do so. I’m just guessing that there will be fewer delays & none of this is time sensitive. So I guess this is actually my Christmas & birthday wishlist…

Robot VacuumI have resisted the robot vacuum for a number of years but I feel as though the technology has existed long enough that it’s probably pretty difficult to find a dud. Still, I did some extensive research & this one had overall good reviews & it’s supposed to be really good for pet hair. Reasons I want a robot vacuum: I vacuum almost everyday & think my neighbors would appreciate it if I had a quieter one. They have never said anything but I know that they hear me vacuuming constantly. Also, I would like to spend my time doing other things like napping. Imagine, a spotless floor all while you’re napping πŸ˜€ Seriously though, I need one.

YSL Libre IntenseIf you haven’t experienced the original Libre fragrance, it’s a very warm vanilla scent. The new intense formulation is like full fat vanilla. It smells luxurious & amazing, I was skeptical at first spray because it was little on the alcohol side but the dry down is beautiful. It takes me quite a long time to purchase a fragrance because they are just so expensive. I am about through my summer scents thought & this will be my go-to winter scent. I love the rich caramel color too, it smells just like it looks – warm & rich.

Capricorn Key Ring I always get myself a little something Capricorn themed, I think this resin keychain will be the perfect addition to my key ring.

David’s Tea Tasting ClubMy favorite tea supplier is offering a quarterly tea subscription box?! Sold. Also, I already purchased this for myself & cannot wait for it to arrive. Each box includes up to 8 seasonal teas & other tea lover goodies. I am so excited to see what is inside, I have a strict No Subscription Box rule but it’s tea & I know that everything will be used.

Lash Idole Lashi Lifting & Volumizing MascaraI recently received a sample of this mascara, it’s amazing. It isn’t out yet but I am ordering at least 5 tubes! I have straight lashes & some of them point down after having had lash extensions for so long. I know, I know – lash extensions won’t damage your lashes but the weight of wearing them for so long definitely changed the way they grow. This mascara makes them appear curled & voluminous with just a couple of swipes & the curl lasts all day. It’s really black, not clumpy & just makes my lashes look awesome.

Nora Kisslock CrossbodyHere’s the deal, I would never actually purchase this even as a gift to myself because it’s leather & I have a new bag. That being said, look at how chic & fun this little bag is. I love the modern take on an old style, the gold chain, the size – it’s an adorable bag. Alas…

GAP Ribber JoggersI always purchase a new pair of pajamas for Christmas too, it’s the one tradition from my youth that I’ve continued. I won’t be wearing these beauties on Christmas Eve but am sure they will get a lot of use.

I think that’s it, will I suddenly be struck with a treat yourself mood right around my birthday? It’s been known to happen but I have sworn to myself that I will not splurge on a bunch of skincare that I don’t need. There have been one…or two…times that I’ve gone nuts purchasing anti-aging products right around my birthday. I take good care of my skin, this simply is not necessary.

What’s on your wishlist this year? Do you treat yourself or hope that Santa comes through πŸ™‚ Thanks for reading!

On the 8th Day of Blogmas: Scent of the Season

Blogmas

But before we get into today’s Blogmas; a story about renting in America. I rent, owning a home does not appeal to me in the slightest. I figured this out while house hunting the last year or so. Snow clearing, plowing, lawn care, having a driveway sealed, picking out new windows & all of the other delightful things that come along with homeownership just aren’t things that I am interested in. I can appreciate a beautiful home & the hard work that goes into one but it’s not for me. My apartment is my home, it’s not just another stop on the ride to somewhere else as it seems to be for most other renters. I take care of it just as I would if I did own it, the actual owners don’t. I’ve had numerous maintenance needs that I have ended up taking care of on my own or paying someone else to do it because the maintenance here is nonexistent. Recently, my shower started draining slower than normal so I dumped some Drano down it thinking my hair had just backed it up. Not the case, apparently the neighbors below me had a major clog from their washing machine that ended up causing some water main to back up & burst. First of all – what the fuck are you putting in your washing machine & how was I supposed to know?! So my building manager calls me to see if I have had any drainage issues, I tell him about the bath to which he freaks out & asks why I didn’t say anything. Because you wouldn’t have taken a look anyway. My kitchen sink dripped for months until I replaced it, I have water stains on my spare bedroom ceiling from rainwater leaking in while the roof was being replaced. The smoke alarm in my living room goes off randomly which isn’t disruptive to my life at all. All of which, I have requested maintenance for! But me not reporting a maintenance issue is such a huge problem & this sums up renting in America. All of the responsibility falls on the renter when in reality, aren’t we the customers. Shouldn’t we be the ones being made happy?! I’m over it, almost enough to start looking at houses…

Good news on that crazy Bath & Body Works order(s), their customer service was able to cancel the duplicate orders but I will have to keep the additional candles that I had added by accident because of site latency. No complaints though, it’s not like I won’t use the extra candles πŸ˜› Which brings us to today’s topic, my current home scent picks for the holiday season! First, I have this Winter Pine candle from ULTA, that is surprisingly good for a new candle brand! It is a 3-wick soy blend that is the perfect blend of pine, spice & musk. It smells exactly like a sappy, fresh cut Christmas tree – I love it. I will say that it doesn’t burn as clean as a Bath & Body Works candle, I’ve had to skim the burnt wax off a few times to keep it burning but other than that it has been fine. Sadly, it is now out of stock but Fresh Balsam, Tree Farm & Mahogany Balsam from Bath & Body Works are all very similar scents.

Next, are these Fresh Pine & Juniper Airwick that I found at Walmart recently. These are definitely a sharper tree scent but still pleasant & not PineSol smelling – although, I do love the scent of PineSol so I might be biased. I have not seen these ones in year prior but I hope they keep making them. My apartment smells like a tree farm now & it’s perfectly festive.

I’m not totally sure why I associate pine scents with Christmas, I think it’s the memories of wood burning in the stove in addition to the fresh tree in the living room that puts me in a holiday spirit whenever I smell it. What are your favorite holiday scents? I used to really like Champagne Toast but now it just smells like burnt plastic to me. Thanks for stopping by, I hope that you are surviving this holiday season πŸŽ„

On The 7th Day of Blogmas: Holiday Movie Watch List

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Have these movies all been watched at least a hundred times by most everyone on the face of the earth? Yes. Are we still going to watch them on repeat until New Years? Given the current lockdown situation, probably. Listen, I just don’t think that the cheesy, made for television holiday romps will ever compare to the classics. They’re cute but they don’t have that re-watch ability factor for me. I can watch Kevin McCallister slap aftershave on his face 50 times over & still laugh…I can only watch a hunky knight kiss Vanessa Hudgens under the mistletoe like…once. Not to mention, those feel good films make myself & most single females bitter – when am I going to be proposed to on Christmas by some time traveling hunk?! Never, the answer is never.

My inner monologue watching Hallmark movies…

I much prefer holiday comedy films over the feel good rom-coms, but everyone’s taste is different. These are just a few that I must watch each year.

Frosty Regular

Just the original for me, please – Lost in New York is pretty good but can the same preposterous thing happen two times over? Seems unlikely. I am sure that we all know the premise of this classic, Kevin makes a Christmas wish for his whole family to disappear & Father Christmas grants this wish when the family hits a flight to Paris & leaves him home alone. Kevin enjoys his newfound freedom until a couple of local burglars case his family home. It’s a classic that I think has aged very well and should not be remade.

Frosty Regular

Probably my favorite holiday movie, I love this quirky, crazy, relatable chronicle of Christmas with the Griswolds. Again, it’s a hilarious depiction of how the holidays can go so wrong but still be so much fun when the family gets together. The turkey scene especially kills me, my mom would start cooking the turkey at about 2 AM & cook that thing for hours. I still don’t know why, when I started cooking my own turkey & realized that it takes a mere few hours, I figured out why my mother’s turkey was always so dry πŸ˜› No, sometimes it was perfect but I still don’t understand the 12-hour cook time.

Frosty Regular

This is a newer addition to my holiday rotation but it became a fast favorite – probably because it is set in 1940 which just adds to its charm. The movie chronicles Ralphie’s attempts to acquire a Red Ryder air rifle for Christmas. The costumes & sets are simply perfect, it’s just a delight. I’m that crazy person who will actually sit & watch this one on marathon, it’s so much fun & who can’t relate to desperately wanting something for Christmas as a kid?

Frosty Regular

Scott Calvin has stopped believing in the magic of Christmas until he inadvertently pushes Santa off his roof & finds himself having to the fill the role. My favorite parts of this one are when single dad Scott burns the holiday meal & they have to eat at a Denny’s that is fresh out of pie & when Neal receives a Weenie Whistle. It’s a fun move that touched on some very real topics, like navigating a new family dynamic during the holidays & hanging onto the true meaning of Christmas.

Frosty Regular

This one tends to end up on some worst movie lists but I think it’s delightful. Howard is a high-powered mattress salesman who forgets to secure a hot toy item for his son. This leads to a hysterical series of events as he tries to find a Turbo Man for Christmas morning. There are a lot of Minnesota landmarks in this film; Mall of America, Wabasha St. & downtown St. Paul, the Cedar bridge – it’s fun to watch.

My favorite thing to do is have these on repeat while I wrap gifts through the night. Do I have any reason so stay up all night & wrap gifts? No, it’s not like there is anyone in the house that I need to have asleep so I can wrap gifts πŸ˜› Also, I never wrap gifts on Christmas Eve anyway because most of them need to be in the mail well before Christmas. So usually, it’s like a random Tuesday night that I am staying up way too late wrapping gifts & watching holiday movies. What are your favorite holiday movies, let me know if any of there top your list!

On The 6th Day of Blogmas: My Favorite Vlogmas

Blogmas

Confession, I’m a vlog junkie. I love watching people just living their lives. Oh, you’re detailing your car for two hours? Fascinating. Vloggers bring me back to a more wholesome time on YouTube when it was normal people broadcasting themselves. Now YouTube seems so hyper-stylized & plagued with drama. Many of my favorite vloggers have stopped vlogging or left the platform altogether. For those who still post YouTube content, few continue to post Vlogmas which is just a bummer. Luckily for me, my favorite content creators who still post Vlogmas definitely do it the best!

Jessica Braun & Family – I’ve been watching Jessica for a long time & just adore her little family. They live in Indiana & their content is delightfully Midwestern. She posts a little bit of everything; lifestyle, grocery hauls, recipes, beauty, travel & it’s all genuinely relatable. She & her husband (Tyler) are so goofy & wholesome. I also appreciate how they include their daughter in their vlogs without over sharing. Kids on YouTube & family vlog channels mostly just weird me out. The Braun family vlogmas highlight decorating, cooking, baking & loads of other wholesome content.

Fleur De Force & Family – Fleur is another one I’ve been watching for a very long & she is the coolest. Her style, her taste in home decor – she’s a total class act. Her family lives in the English countryside in what appears to be an old manor house with at least 100 rooms. I’m sure it’s not that big but whenever she posts in a new room I’m like – what room is this?! Her house is to die for, check out her kitchen renovation 🀩 Fleur & her husband, Mike have the cutest daughter named River. Again, while she is included, it’s not seemingly invasive. Also, her name is River – just the coolest. Their vlogmas are a bit more posh, stunning trees, handmade gift wrapping, gin & tonics – I love it all. Her lockdown vlogs have been really delightful as well.

It’s been fun watching these Youtubers grow up & evolve over the years – I hope that they keep posting & sharing glimpses of their lives for a very long time. Do you have any vlogger recommendations, let me know & thanks for reading ❄

On The 5th Day of Blogmas: Dreaming of a White Christmas β„

Blogmas

December 5th, still no snow. Growing increasingly disappointed in 2020, if that’s even imaginable. I cannot believe that we still don’t have any snow on the ground! We had 2-3 inches right before Halloween & it seemed that we were well on our way into winter. Then November hit with a series of unseasonably warm weeks, not days, weeks. Seemingly, there is no end in sight & very little precipitation in the forecast. I just knew that 2020 would find a way to ruin Christmas. I’m being a tad dramatic, perhaps.

For me, snow is an integral part of the holiday season. I could never live in a climate where snow is rare or nonexistent. I love the smell of snow, the reflection of it on a dark night, the way it sparkles against lights. The best Christmas day memories are those of sledding or ice skating after the indoor festivities had commenced. Many of these idealic days were punctuated with beautiful snow showers. I can’t remember any brown Christmases & yet that seems to be the norm now. This makes me a bit sad, I can honestly say that I’ve witnessed climate change during my lifetime. I mean, it doesn’t just cease to snow in a cold climate for simply no good reason.

The lack of cold weather & snow doesn’t just put a damper on my holiday spirit – I love cold weather sports. Snowshoeing, cross country skiing, snowboarding & ice skating are all dependent on good winter conditions & it’s not even cold enough for a coat right now.

I will be tremendously disappointed if it doesn’t snow by Christmas, I didn’t think that this year could be more of a let down & here we are 😐 Do you have any snow in your neck of the woods? Let me know so I can move there πŸ˜‚

On the 4th Day of Blogmas: Candle Day

Blogmas

…palms are sweaty, knees weak, arms are heavy…When I heard that Bath & Body Works was extending their Candle Day event & including an online shopping day – I didn’t pay it much mind. I never make it into the store for the big event anyway because I cannot handle crowds like that under any circumstances let alone during a pandemic. Usually, I just wait until the candles are $14.50 & I have a 20% coupon which brings the candles down to almost the same price as the candle day deal then I go to the store for a leisurely shopping experience. However, on further inspection of said coupon, this year it said that it cannot be combined with other offers or sales. What?! I get it, retailers are definitely struggling & probably less inclined to offer deals on deals on deals. So, here I am, 5 AM (I always get up at 5, I wasn’t doing it for Candle Day), going back & forth on whether or not I was going to give in & purchase some candles online. But, Stella – you just received a box of broken glass that is still sitting in your closet & your online ordering experiences have been less than 10/10.

Here’s the thing, I have a home fragrance obsession & I still needed to replace the candles that I was going to give as gifts because they are going to be the center item in these baskets I’m putting together. Now, I had considered swapping them for a bottle of wine but a couple of friends have stopped drinking during the pandemic & everyone can enjoy a candle. I decided that I was going to replace the gift candles & treat myself to one seasonal scent. Seems reasonable, right? Here’s what actually happened.

To start why is online shopping so difficult? It’s supposed to be easy, it never is unless your are shopping on Amazon which sucks because that’s why people shop so much on Amazon – myself included. I’ve never had payment issues, had an item be in stock when I check out & then received an email saying that the item was actually not in stock, they process refunds incredibly fast, replace missing items – just to name a few reasons that keep me coming back to Amazon. Obviously, being a brick & mortar retailer who also has e-commerce is different than only ever existing as an online retailer. Their logistics capabilities probably blow most other retailers out of the water. I have never heard of Amazon crashing even though they sell an average of 4,000 items per minute. Bath & Body Works goes live with Candle Day & the site almost immediately crashes. Why? Why does Amazon seemingly have access to far & away more bandwidth than any other online retailer?! It’s all the same internet, I don’t get it. So, I just knew that after 5 minutes of the website spinning & then getting the Uh-Oh screen that this was going to be a ride.

I have zero patience for online shopping, I would much rather go to a store in person & stand in line if need be. These retailers want me to wait in an online queue in the world of ones & zeros?! I don’t think so. Also, I am not very online shopping savvy – I’ve heard of shoppers using multiple computers or devices to navigate websites. I literally cannot be bothered. I decided to just leave the site & come back, when I came back it took awhile to load but it eventually did. There were a couple of scents that I wanted that were already sold out, no big deal because I was only getting one for me anyway. I’m adding to bag but had to click multiple times to actually get items to the bag, everything seemed fine otherwise, I’m so close to checking out that I can taste it. I choose PayPal because I think that’s the most secure way to check out online. The website timed out when it was sending me over to PayPal. I back up, my bag is empty, I refill it, select PayPal & this time it works. Huzzah! Back to the B&BW website, the submit order button is greyed out so I refresh the page. It’s clickable, the end is near. Processing, processing, confirmation from PayPal…processing, processing, another confirmation from PayPal….& then another. In the end, I ended up with three orders with multiples of items that I thought I was only selecting 1 each of but I’m guessing that I was adding to bag but the bag wasn’t updating…? Apparently, I have ordered almost 40 candles. I contacted B&BW immediately to let them know that they were all duplicate orders, there is no reason for them to ship 2 additional orders to me when I know they are swamped & nobody needs that many candles!! I can’t believe that the orders weren’t immediately flagged.

I’m stressed, my heart hurts a little – like a tightness in my chest. I think I should lay down. Do people actually enjoy online shopping?! How is this enjoyable, shopping stresses me out anyway but there is something so intangible about online shopping that really makes me anxious. I don’t feel like I have actually successfully purchased something until it’s physically in my hands. My hope is that they see that there are multiple duplicate orders but that still doesn’t remedy the fact that I was obviously clicking around too much & adding more than one item to my bag. Everything is mostly sold out now so I guess I’m glad that I shopped early…?

I’m tired, are you an online shopper? I know that you cannot beat the convenience but gosh, it seems like such an ordeal more often than not. I would probably have been better off just hitting the store tomorrow but here we are. If the candles arrive busted, that’s it for me & online shopping.

On The 3rd Day of Blogmas: Black Friday Fail

Blogmas

You guys, I think the universe is sending me a sign that I should be saving my shekels instead of spending them on more beauty stuff that I really don’t need. Most of my Black Friday budget was spent at ULTA because they were having some great deals. I swear, they make way more money off me than they pay me πŸ˜› Well, my order of 16 or so items arrived yesterday & 6 of those items were candles that I was giving as gifts with some other bits for my gal pals. The UPS delivery man who is such a nice guy knocked on my door & handed me the box, he said it sounded broken & boy, he was right. First of all, whoever packed the box should have picked a bigger one at the very least. All of the items were crammed to the brim of the box without a single piece of packing material. All 6 candles were on top, completely shattered. The makeup was underneath the candles & I am guessing just the sheer weight of the candles crushed them because it was a mess. One bottle of shampoo had a big slash in it & the product had completely filled the bottom of the box. I stopped examining the items because it started to get hairy digging through glass laced shampoo. The outside of the box was in perfect condition & I don’t think it was a carrier issue, the warehouse just did a terrible job of packing the box. I’m not making a fuss (aside from this long-winded rant), first because I am an employee & second because the distribution centers are probably overworked & understaffed. I did request a refund because I cannot use a single thing in that box & am pretty disappointed but like I said, taking it as a sign. Also, I have no idea what do with with this box of broken glass?! I already told customer service that I am not sending it back through the mail! Eventually, the shampoo will make the box soggy enough that it could break open & really hurt someone. I don’t want to return it at my store because then we’ll just have a box of broken glass in the damages pile. Update – customer service told me that I could just throw the products away & a refund would be issued πŸ™‚ I still think that I will go through it & separate everything as much as possible, what a mess.

Looking at this photo, the cotton rounds did survive!

The only other item that I purchased for myself was a handbag from Foley & Corrina which was on sale but not that great of sale, I really just needed a small bag that I could carry essential items in for work. Back when the CDC was saying that COVID could live on surfaces for like 16 hours, I started using a fanny pack when I went out that I would wash constantly. Well, now that I am back at the office, my neon green fanny pack is less than chic & a little faded from all that washing. I’m not ready to go back to my big bags because I still feel like I need to wipe them down & I don’t need to be carrying one since they double as my gym bag. I wanted a small, synthetic bag that still looked nice but would be easy to clean & hold what I needed it to. This little bag checks all of those boxes & it’s pretty cute, the gold accents look like a smiley face πŸ™‚

I’m a mid-sized gal, certainly not thin so I tend to avoid small bags because they make me feel bigger but I really cannot be bothered to care at the moment. The strap on this bag is long enough to make the perfect cross body, I can wear it over my coats too & it doesn’t look oddly small. It’s a simple bag with enough little details to make it fun.

I honestly don’t know a lot about this brand or how well this bag will wear. Most of my other bags are leather or vegan leather, this one is simply described as synthetic so I guess we’ll see. It has a nice weight to it though & very nice lining. There is a credit card pocket on the outside & one zip pocket on the inside. It holds everything that I need it to, I’ve already used disinfectant wipes on it a couple of times with no issues.

Did you snag any deals this year – let me know what you had your eye on! I really, really wanted one of those robotic vacuum things but couldn’t commit & I don’t mind vacuuming anyway, I think my cats & neighbors would prefer that I purchase one since I vacuum a lot but maybe I will get one for Christmas πŸ˜€ I hope that you are happy, healthy & just doing the best you can πŸ–€

On The 2nd Day of Blogmas: Merry Kitschmas

Blogmas

I use kitsch & kitschmas as endearing terms, to me they describe the decorative tastes of 1940’s & 50’s housewives. The Shiny Brite era is pretty much peak Christmas for me; the colors, the tacky tinsel trees, the post-war decadence & excess simply appeals to me. I don’t have the pleasure of owning any true vintage pieces, the one time I purchased what I thought was an original set of Lefton Pixies, I found out they were just remakes. Still adorable but makes me a little ill considering what I paid for them, lesson learned & I stick to purchasing new replicas. Luckily for me, many retailers have started producing kitsch dΓ©cor in recent years. I have a few different themes going in different areas of my apartment but the kitchen, living room tree & a portion of the living room itself have been dedicated to my kitsch obsession.

We will start with the kitchen where I don’t do a ton of decorating as my kitchen is already decorated pretty extensively. It’s the one area in the apartment that is not remotely minimalist but everything has been curated over decades & I couldn’t part with any of it. To start, we have the stars of the show which are the Mr. Christmas remakes. I audibly gasped when I spotted these beauties at Target. They had them in white, green & pink, my mother definitely owned a set of these & it was like stepping back into my childhood seeing them again. There were two sizes, I chose one of each in the pink. They light up & everything, just delightful. The pink sisal trees were Hobby Lobby finds from three years ago & the teal fawn was new this year from Michael’s. I used one of my pink Pyrex to hold a gaggle of pastel sisal trees, the Pyrex was already in my collection & the trees were from Target.

Now to the Kitsch Korner πŸ˜› We have a collection of various trees that I have acquired over the years from Target, Hobby Lobby & Michael’s. The pink mercury glass are probably my favorite & I’m unsure of where I found those. The Santa was new this year from Hobby Lobby, he has pastel accents which match perfectly with the rest of the dΓ©cor – I don’t own any other Santa figures but can see more in my future. The tinsel trees were new this year from Target’s Threshold collection, they are exactly that tacky tinsel I’ve been looking for. The retro reindeer was also from Target, the wreath & cone tinsel tree were JoAnn finds. I had the wreath on my front door but decided to bring it in after my doormat was stolen. Finally, the glitter fawns are the same as my kitchen one just in different colors from Michael’s.

To the tree! This year I went primarily pink with loads of mercury glass. Lots of these were Target finds, Michael’s & some JoAnn. I think my favorites are the felt reindeer & the starbursts covered in glitter. Only a handful of these are new this year, most I already owned.

Here is a somewhat full-tree shot, with no topper as you can see πŸ˜€ I have been looking at some bows, I think that could work…also though, this tree has a very prominent top branch. I think that’s part of my issue, I would have to find a tree topper that is at least 6-7 inches tall but not too wide as the tree is tall & thin.

That does it for the kitsch collection I will share the other elements at another date! What dΓ©cor trends are you most fond of? I like to change it up from year to year but this means owning way more than I actually need with very little storage options. If I had to pick just one theme though, it would probably be the 1940’s. Let me know if you’ve decorated already, thanks for stopping by!

On the 1st Day of Blogmas: A Christmas Tag

Blogmas

Or Holiday Tag – whatever you celebrate! It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Welcome to Blogmas, I hope that you are as excited as I am for this holiday season. I’m not really a huge Christmas person, like the actual day with the gifting & the feasting but I appreciate the feeling of this particular season. Everything seems a little brighter, a little more hopeful & people a little more kind. The festive season has this ability to bring out the best in humanity & the world is better for it – when people say that they wish it was Christmas all year round, I imagine that it is this feeling they are referring to. What can one expect from my Blogmas posts? A bit of everything really, some recipes, a lot of dΓ©cor/lifestyle posts, tags & such. I do not post gift guides, I’m not great at recommending gifts to others although I pride myself on giving really good gifts but only because I’m struck with a thought randomly, usually last minute. Today’s post is a collection of tag questions that I have rounded up. I was not tagged to do this, I am a bit of a tag cheater – if I see one that I like, then I do it. If you are reading this & enjoying it, consider yourself tagged!

Mr. Kebab Demo Regular

Just one?! If I had to choose my absolute favorite holiday film, it would be National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation because it portrays a real, gritty, yet hilarious set of circumstances that can happen when your modern family gets together. With all of the personalities & quirks, expectations – I like that it is relatable to some of my childhood Christmas memories. Maybe everything wasn’t perfect but we still had a good time, we never kidnapped anyone but I have some stories about tree fires πŸ˜€ They are humorous now but tragic in the moment, nobody was ever hurt either – I know that Christmas tree fires are no joke.

Mr. Kebab Demo Regular

There are strong opinions on this, I don’t have any. I had a roommate who would play Christmas music when she was stressed out & have enjoyed carols in the dead of summer on occasion. It was somewhat surprising to hear stores playing Christmas tunes so early this year but I didn’t necessarily mind it. I would say, any time that you feel in the mood is acceptable.

Mr. Kebab Demo Regular

Since living on my own, it really just depends on what I am doing. If I am visiting family then probably the day of but as a kid it was always stockings on the eve then we stayed up to attend midnight mass then opened gifts on Christmas Day. Nowadays, gift exchanges typically occur on random days with friends – I’m flexible πŸ˜€

Mr. Kebab Demo Regular

I loved Christmas as a kid, we had this loft style living area where we would put the tree & I recall the glow of those big, glass bulbs on a pitch black night. Instead of a tree skirt, my mom would roll out this big, red braided rug to set the tree on. We were the only house for literally miles on a road to nowhere but my dad would spend an entire day wrapping our big fence with lights. I don’t know how many strands it was but it took forever & I thought it was well worth the effort but mostly because I was usually just chilling in the snow while he did it. I guess I don’t have one big memory but lots of little things that I remember fondly.

Mr. Kebab Demo Regular

Fresh cut pine trees! I can’t have a real tree where I live & have not been able to for some years but I love a good pine scented candle. I can’t wait until I move into a house where I can have a real tree – maybe not every year but occasionally.

Mr. Kebab Demo Regular

Not really, I like to take one weekend day to bake cookies & watch James Bond films. I’m unsure of the rules around home baked goods this year but I figure if I put them into their own little bags then they are OK to share? I figure someone will eat them if they are sitting out?! I try to purchase a new ornament each year, I don’t like to be too matchy with my tree ornaments & have found this to be a good way to add variety.

Mr. Kebab Demo Regular

Currently nothing! I have owned this particular tree for going on 6 years now & still have not found a tree topper that I like. I just don’t know what I am looking for but also have not seen anything that I feel really fits it. I have a smaller tree that I sometimes put in my room that I have a topper for but it’s a much smaller tree & was much easier to find something for. I don’t know what I am looking for but hopefully I find it before the lights on this one go out & I have to find a whole new one πŸ™‚

Mr. Kebab Demo Regular

Pie! I’m a big fan of pie, if dinner/lunch involves particularly good pies – I will skip most of the other foods so I can have more pie. I don’t know if I’ve ever had a bad pie to be honest – I have made a few bad ones but I digress. Pecan is probably my favorite, or sweet potato…let me know what your favorite pie is, definitely always keen to try more!

Mr. Kebab Demo Regular

Otis Redding’s White Christmas & Stevie Wonder’s Christmas Means to Me. Aside from those, I prefer instrumental or classical music.

Mr. Kebab Demo Regular

Vaccines, can we all just get vaccines for gifts this year? I just want this pandemic to be in the past, I know that nothing will ever be the same but I want to start living in the future state. I’m just so tired, a huge weight will be lifted from the world when we are finally able to move forward. So Dear Santa, vaccines for all! What are you wishing for this year?

I hope that you enjoyed this tag to kick off Blogmas, let me know if you do this one as I would love to read your responses! I am certain that this will be a very different holiday season for many & I hope that we are all able to find joy in the season. There are lots of things that I am finding myself especially grateful for though I took them for granted in years prior. Thanks for stopping by, happy first day of Blogmas!!