Want A Chance to Win More Stuff?

Shannon Eileen at Happiness Is… is celebrating her new (and first!) sponsor with a fantastic giveaway.

You should head over there and check it out and then take a little extra time to check out Shannon’s blog. It’s terrific!

Happy Birthday…You

I’m researching some options for birthday cards or postcards that I can get to mail out to clients as a promotion for birthday discounts. I came across this card during my search and started cracking up. I want to give to everyone I know, especially the people I’m really close to. My brother-in-law’s birthday is coming up in a couple of weeks. He’s definitely the kind of person who would get a kick out of this. 

by Sycamore Street Press

Here’s a great Thank You card from the same shop.

Those Were The Days

The travel bug has been biting me like crazy recently. I think the generally crappy weather we’ve had this winter is to blame. I am just aching for adventure and warm sand and the feel of sun on my face and shoulders as I explore someplace new. I don’t have anywhere specific that I want to visit right now; I’d be up for going anywhere if only I had the time and money. The constant thought of travel has me reminiscing about past trips. Last night I went looking through old photos of our trip to Europe; those were three weeks of my life that I will never forget.

The pictures above were taken at a flamenco bar in Barcelona. Dan went all wiz-kid with the camera, holding the shutter open so that the dancer’s moves would flow together, which gave her a very ghostly quality on film. I love it. You can check out more of our photos from Spain, France and Italy below.

Me and Dan in an Irish pub (?!) in Barcelona

Pamplona, during The Running of the Bulls

Notre Dame de Paris

La Tour Eiffel on Bastille Day




Gift Guide {Urban Outfitters}

Last week I posted a Valentine’s gift guide with gift ideas for all the friends in your life that you love so much.  I hadn’t checked out Urban Outfitters at the time, but they have some really fun stuff. So if you’re still looking for a great way to spend Valentine’s Day, check out some of these great gifts and celebrate with one of your best girlfriends!

1. Wouldn’t it be fun to pick a few recipes from The Little Pink Book of Cocktails and get tipsy while watching your favorite slumber party movies?

2. How about some sipping mimosas during a Valentine’s Day brunch? You could serve heart-shaped eggs!

3. Or maybe you can just catch up on what’s new in each other’s lives over some coffee served in a sweet LOVE Mug.

4. Start saving for that next great vacation together by depositing your extra change is this silly sperm bank.

5. Dance around the house you blast your favorite tunes from this Heart Speaker.

6. Or get all dressed up, including a pair of Heart Tights and take your party for two out on the town.

Snowed In

Over the weekend, Baltimore got about 30 inches of snow. The city really isn’t equipped to deal with that much snow and many of the roadways have yet to be plowed. Weather forecasters are predicting another 6-10 inches to fall on Tuesday into Wednesday morning. At this rate, my office will be closed for the rest of the week.

We spent our snowy weekend watching movies, playing board games with some neighbors down the street and running through the snowy park with our dog.

(Note: Click the pictures to enlarge them and bring up the full gallery.)

Gift Guide {For Your Other Loves}

I’m not all that big on Valentine’s Day. It’s not because of bitterness or contempt, but simply because I’ve been with my husband since I was 16 years old and I like to think that every day is a day to celebrate how much we love each other and reflect on how our friendship and intimacy have made our lives richer and more rewarding. That and in February, I’m still feeling the hit of the holiday season and don’t really have a lot of extra cash on hand to do anything big on the 14th. We usually just wait until the holiday passes and then buy up a bunch of heavily discounted candy. Plus, I’m still holding out for the creation of Love Day. (That one’s for you, Daniel.)

But in years past, when I’ve had a bit of spending money and was a little more on top of things, I’ve sent gifts to friends or to my sister. I like to use Valentine’s Day as an opportunity to tell people in my life who are not my husband how much they mean to me and how much I love them. So this is a gift guide for those people you love who are not your lover. 

Sweetheart Sunnies [via here]

I can just picture my sister rockin’ these shades with a little mini dress and some kick ass heels. She would look incredible. 

Hello Lucky has a whole of host of adorable Valentine’s cards, but I think this Pirate Monkey would be great for a best friend that lives much too far away. 

My mom would technically need 3 pearls to represent her kiddos, but all the same, this Mama Bird Nest Necklace from Stuck In The Coop is a lovely way to say “love you Mom!” [via here]

How about some nice XOXO pencils by Simple Song Designs for a friend who loves to doodle? 

I can’t think of a single friend I have who wouldn’t love a batch of Valentine’s Day cupcakes shipped directly to their door from The Cupcake Mint. [via here]

Puppy Bowl!

Say hello to Eenu

Check out the full starting line-up!

Best of The Decade {A Final Roundup}

Well, taking a week off from blogging has certainly left me in a bit of a time crunch as far as my Best of The Decade awards are concerned. So let’s go ahead and get right down to it, which leads me to our:

Best Catch Phrase Turned Colloquialism

That’s What She Said

Best Self-Inflicted Torture


Nothing else on television in the last ten years has made me want to tear my own hair out as often as Lost. What the hell is going on on that damn island!!!!!!!!!!!???????? My god is it entertaining, though.

Best Repeat Fashion Offender From Someone Who Should Know Better

The ’00s saw a lot of celebrity fashion disasters. 2001 was the year Bjork wore that crazy swan dress to the Oscars. Lindsay Lohan waged what felt like a decade-long war on actual pants with her incessant coupling of leggings with long shirts. Christina Aguilera spent many a year looking like a coked-out biker chick floozy. But even with all those disasters and the many more the ’00s had to offer, I give this award to Justin Timberlake.

Now that he’s successfully brought sexy back, I’m sure he looks back on this picture and shakes his head with self pity and admonishment:

If only I could tell him that in another ten years, he’ll be feeling the same way about these stupid glasses he insists on wearing all the time now:

Come on man, you know better than to dress in a perpetual Elvis Costello Halloween costume.

Best Media Franchise

Wow was this a big decade for the franchise movie! Lord of the Rings took home bazillions of Oscars and loads of money. There became such a thing as a “Twihard.” But as much as Lord of the Rings made me want to visit New Zealand and as crazy as those Twilight fans managed to be these last couple of years, the decade’s best media franchise was hands-down, Harry Potter. Six of the movies and the last four books all came out in the past decade. J.K. Rowling went from being some ridiculously poor woman to being rich, rich as Nazis. It made three young Brits into huge international stars. Harry Potter in the last ten years was pure madness.

Finally, just so that I feel like I’ve hit all points of the entertainment industry, my choice for Best Album of the Decade goes to:

Bright Eyes, I’m Wide Awake It’s Morning

The combination of political frustration, personal angst and intense wanderlust made this folk album the perfect soundtrack to coming of age in the last ten years. There isn’t a bad song on the entire album–which is no easy feat–and it’s so fantastically bookended by “At the Bottom of Everything” and “Road to Joy” that you end the album with the same feeling awe you started with. I love it.

Best of The Decade {Internet, What Hast Thou Wrought?}

When LOL Cats were first really starting to make waves, I had the following conversation with my boss’ 15 year-old son. 

Me: What the heck is up with these LOL Cats?
Him: I know, right. Aren’t they hilarious?
Me: Not really. What about them is supposed to be so funny? 
Him: They’re talking cats. 
Me: Okay…
Him: Cats can’t talk. 
Me: Agreed. But why is that funny? 
Him: Because it is funny to think about a cat talking when cats obviously can’t talk. 
Me: But why can’t they spell anything correctly? 
Him: Because they are just cats. 
Me: Okay…
Him: So they obviously don’t know how to spell.
Me: But they don’t know how to talk either. 
Him: Exactly, it’s hilarious. 
Me: But if we are to create a hypothetical situation in which cats can talk, why not also assume that they would know how to spell?
Him: Because they are just cats. 
Me: Okay…
Him: Cats can’t spell. I mean, they don’t even know how to talk. 

This conversation about one of the most pervasive internet memes of the decade is a perfect example of the Best Internet Meme of the Decade: 


Sure, LOL Cats popped up everywhere and people actually had the gall and audacity to adopt the nettlesome language in everyday conversation, either not realizing or not caring that they sounded like some cross between an Alzheimer’s patient and a witless baby. But it was a bit too irritating. Fail, on the other hand, despite its denotation, is full of win. 

So congrats Fail, for defying yourself.

Best of The Decade {Dreams, Haunted}

There were an awful lot of movies this past decade that gave me some serious heebie-jeebies. When my family and I watched the remake of Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003), we had to turn it off less than half way through because it was too damn gruesome. The simple thought of 28 Days Later (2002) still sends a shiver down my spine.

But no movie or single character was more terrifying and nightmare-inducing than my choice for Creepiest Character of the Decade: 

Samara, that wet girl from The Ring (2002)

Congratulations creepy-ass wet girl. You are the reason my husband can no longer watch scary movies, and these pictures alone will probably be enough to keep me from sleeping peacefully tonight. You are scary as hell. 

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