Monday, December 30, 2013

How to Have the Best NYE Ever!

Hey homies!  Getting excited for New Years' Eve, like I am?  I wanted to put together a how-to-guide for those of you braving the elements to celebrate with your friends or your significant other.  Just remember to be safe and have fun!

Step One - Assemble Your Team, Set Up Home Base

So gather your friends to make a party, don't expect a huge crowd.  NYE is notoriously hard for getting people and especially couples to get out and join you.  Keep it small, no more than 4 people and you will be able to move around more smoothly.  Also don't worry if its just you and your best friend.  I've had plenty of awesome NYEs with my bestie.

Set up a Home Base at someone's place or apartment.  A central location everyone can meet up at.  While you wait for others to arrive, make party crowns with colorful pipe cleaners! 


Or you could get some cute little cat ears. Source

They have similar ones at Forever 21. Source

Friday, December 27, 2013

A Look Back - 2013 (Part Two)

Hola muchachos!

Welcome back to the real world.  Sadly, now is time to put away the cookies, hot cocoa, mashed potatoes, Christmas ham, and wrapping paper.  We must now go to back to our jobs, messy homes, and hope for a even better year to be on it's way.  Fear not, though.  Let's take a look back on what 2013 has brought us.  Or me, I guess, specifically.  (Sorry, I sound like a jerk)

2013 Books

I didn't end up reading too many books this year, mainly because the fourth book in the Song of Ice and Fire series (Game of Thrones) was such a slog to get through.  While people who had HBO were freaking out over the Red Wedding, I was plodding through the boring adventures of Cersei Lannister and the Greyjoy Brothers, Theon's uncles.  A task to be sure.  So when I finally finished eight months later, 2013 was almost at an end.  I did manage to read two memoirs, a decent murder mystery and a young adult novel. (because I'm a nerd, we've been over this)


Recommended if you were born in the 80's and felt like an outsider.  Not recommended if you don't listen to rap which I don't.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

A Look Back - 2013 (Part One)

I hope your holidays are going well!  If you are already back at work or just bored sitting around at Grandma's, now is a good time to look at 2013 in review.  Specifically I'm talking movies.  You ever wait for the People Magazine or Entertainment Weekly's Top 10 Movies/Books/Music/TV Moments/Smoothie Flavors of the year to come out?  I do!  I eat that sh#t right up!

Gotta catch up on the stuff I missed out on!  Next year I'll watch more movies, listen to more music, read more books...until I get too lazy by February and then just waste time playing Arkham Asylum again for the 90th time.  Well, a girl can dream.

I wanted to kick off Part One of my fabulous retrospective with MOVIES!!  I love movies, so much so that my degree is in Film but I won't go all obnoxious film school on you because that's dumb and boring.

Monday, December 23, 2013

The Holiday (Press) Play List

I hope you all will be enjoying time spent with your families, eating decadent meals, and taking long naps in front of the fire.  My family usually does a game night Christmas Day but occasionally we will make it a movie night instead.

I have my own holy trinity of Christmas movies that I MUST WATCH every Christmas.  This always includes Batman Returns, Die Hard and A Christmas Story.

Blue eyes...

More blue eyes...

Blue eyes--I'm sensing a type emerge here
Batman Returns is my jam.  It was the first superhero movie I ever saw in the theater, the summer before I turned 10.  This is my Star Wars.  This is the movie I'll always defend until my last breath, as creepy and really unsuitable for children, as it is.  I love it and nothing will change my mind.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

(W)Reef Update #3

I have been finishing up some last minute Christmas wreaths as homemade presents for my family. I made a Texas themed wreath for my mom using seasonal decorations from Michaels that I got for 70 percent off. I used some decorative succulents, red berry sprays, white pine tree trim, and some star shaped wooden cut outs that I spray painted silver. I added some vintage blue ornaments and a red bow fashioned from a bandana, which I found directions on Pinterest. I used an oval wreath rather than a circular wreath to make it interesting and unusual.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Sad Christmas
Every once in a while, I think the nation needs to has a quiet, contemplative, low-key Christmas and I think it’s happening this year.  Last year was on track to be Merry and Bright and then Sandy Hook Elementary happened.  Shook us, as a nation, to the core.  A quiet burn in our hearts and mind.

This tragedy cannot, will not be forgotten.  Its long-reaching shadow reaches for subsequent holidays.  We are still healing.

This December, much of the nation saw an ice and snow storm that kept us house-bound for a few days.  The very tail end caught us here in North Texas.  Ice covered our overpasses and highways, ill –constructed for any type of winter weather.  I got three days of from work. During that time there was no shopping, no putting up Christmas lights outdoors, and no holiday parties.  And it seemed to strip the holidays to the core.  Home-bound with a cup of soup, alone in your house or apartment.  Thinking about the family and friends you’d eventually reunite with.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

12 Days of Christmas Music

I love Christmas music, almost every Christmas song.  It's my favorite part of the holidays.  I'll listen to Christmas music in the car, after Thanksgiving and even few weeks after Christmas.

My dad used to sing in the Christmas Choir at church when we were kids and one year I was able to sing with him, even though I have terrible voice, so I have fond memories of the music.

I like to compile my own Christmas playlists and have set ya'll up with my first playlist.

Enjoy 12 of my favorite Christmas songs!


Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Let's Decorate!

I live in Texas and occasionally we will have snow days or bad weather days due to ice storms.  I've been at home since last Thursday due to the ice storm that makes much of our roads unsafe.  Last night I decided it was time to decorate for Christmas.

I didn't do it the first few days of December because our weather was unbearably warm, topping at 80 degrees for the high.  This weekend I tried to start decorating as I was catching up on the Walking Dead.  Big mistake, homies!  That show will kill ALL your warm and fuzzies for approximately 48 hours.

Last night felt finally right.  So I dragged all my decorations from the attic to start.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Christmas Cards - Yay or Nay?

Image Source
I still love getting Christmas cards in the mail.  As a kid, my folks would receive cards from family, friends and acquaintances around the country.  My mom would hang a giant, long velvet ribbon from the top of the stairs and staple the cards in descending order.  The closer to Christmas, the more cards would appear.

My mom is also a big proponent of the yearly newsletter, which always accompanies her card.  She’ll call me early December to do a mini-interview.  She’ll ask about my achievements in work or on my house.  Asks for an update on her grand-dog, Lil’ Mama.  This year’s newsletter will be extra special as the first grandbaby arrived in July.  My little nephew is super-sweet and smiles ALL the time.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Grapevine, TX - The Christmas Capital of Texas

Umm, yeah. 
Hello lovelies.  And dudes too.  I’m not trying to exclude.  I work in an office not far from the Dallas Fort Worth airport in a little town called Grapevine.  Grapevine is known for their charming Main Street area which is bustling full of wine shops, antique stores, boutique shops, restaurants, bakeries, a working train station and even a jewelry store that used to be a bank, which supposedly the real Bonnie & Clyde had robbed back in the day.  They like to have tons of parades and festivals, mostly centered on the various wineries that reside Grapevine.  But they like Christmas too.  LOVE Christmas.

They really just mean the Christmas season, obvs.

On my lunch break, I decide to walk down Main Street to view the decorations being put together for the upcoming Christmas Parade of Lights and share some of the d├ęcor ideas I come across.  Here we go.
Hot pink and orange.  Barbie would totes be having an "O" Face.