A Few of My Favorite Things

With Christmas less than 24 days away, I put together a little list of a few of my favorite things. I debated calling this list “What I Have That You Need,” but refrained from it so you wouldn’t know how bossy I really am. But for reals, friends, this stuff is the best. And basically, you just need it all. Mmk? K.

♥ Smashbox HIGH Definition Healthy FX Foundation
WHY YOU NEED THIS: It’s amazing. The coverage is flawless, and it goes on beautifully with a big, thick bristled brush or makeup sponges. It’s oil-free and full of all kinds of ingredients to make the most of your already gorgeous skin.
WHERE I BOUGHT IT: If you live by a military base, I buy it there at the PX. If not, check out Sephora or Amazon.
♥ Project Life
WHY YOU NEED THIS: Because your time is precious, and you’re really too busy to scrapbook. But you still want to print & save your photos, and maybe there are a few things you want to remember about them. Project Life is really just a big photo album with journalling cards to help you document your life. It’s scrapbooking for us busy folks. Take a photo, print your photo, fill out a little journalling card and BAM! you’re done. Best part? It’s all color coordinated, there are 4 different themes to choose from, and you can order the pieces individually to get what works for you.
WHERE I BOUGHT IT: Check out Becky’s website (creator of Project Life) for a full list of products. The one I have (in my list above) is the Amber theme with the old binder. Now all the binders are new & even better quality! I’m just waiting for everything to get re-stocked so I can order mine for 2012.
♥ Vera Bradley Tote Bag
WHY YOU NEED THIS: It’s the perfect big tote to toss anything you like into it. I use mine just for work Monday thru Friday. It fits my lunch bag, my planner, my makeup pouch, my wallet, and a whole lot else. I have the “Vera” style in “Suzani,” which I love because the color is so versatile— black, brown, tan, and pops of color.
WHERE I BOUGHT IT: On base at the PX. But Vera is sold everywhere. Lots of Hallmark stores or Crabtree & Evelyn carry Vera. There’s also the Vera Bradley website.
♥ Michael Kors Rose Gold Watch
WHY YOU NEED THIS: Rose gold is beautiful, and such a nice change from silver. It’s a lighter, pinky gold, so not as brass as solid gold watches come off. I wear it with gold, silver, white gold, anything. It adds a little flair to any outfit!
WHERE I BOUGHT IT: This one was a birthday gift from Joshua… though I’m pretty sure he got it at the PX. Check in store at Macys or online at Amazon or Zappos.
♥ iPhone 4S
WHY YOU NEED THIS: Best. Phone. Ever. My favorite thing about it? The 8 MP camera. Yuhhh… it takes incredible photos. Next favorite thing? How easy it is to access email, Facebook, Twitter, the Internet, and my blog list. Next? That I can organize my apps into little groups. I have a group of utility apps, music apps, health & fitness apps, finance apps, shopping apps, and entertainment apps. Seriously. You don’t know what you’ve been missing until you have this.
WHERE I BOUGHT IT: Best Buy Mobile. But it really doesn’t matter. It’s the same price everywhere. Get the smallest size (16 GB), it’s all you’ll need.
♥ Sperry Top-Sider Nassau Boat Shoes
WHY YOU NEED THIS: The warm-weather version of boat shoes! Suede, cute tassels, and leopard print soles. What’s not to love?
WHERE I BOUGHT IT: On base. They’re also on sale at Zappos now. Snatch them up quick!
♥ Urban Decay Naked Palette
WHY YOU NEED THIS: The best palette out there for rich, smooth, neutral eyeshadows. I saw this palette about a year ago, and after reading a million raving reviews online, I had to have it. But it was backordered. So of course that meant I had to have it even more, right? When it finally became available again online at Sephora, I bought it. Then it sat in my makeup drawer for the last 9 months. I finally took this baby out about 2 weeks ago, and I’m in love. It’s everything they say it is and the shades are very blendable. Get it!
WHERE I BOUGHT IT: Online at Sephora.
♥ Organize Now! A Week-by-Week Guide to Simply Your Life & Your Space
WHY YOU NEED THIS: This book goes week by week, room by room, section by section with all sorts of tips and checklists to fill out as you go. I love that it looks like a planner— so cute. I’ve gone back to it over the years and my plan for 2012 is to conquer the whole book. The newest edition is a pretty orange color (the first was green).
WHERE I BOUGHT IT: A bookstore, not sure which since I’ve had it for so long. It’s definitely at Amazon, too.
♥ Keurig Brewer
WHY YOU NEED THIS: Mmm, hot drinks. Variety. No clean up. This is a favorite in the Ploscik house because I do not drink coffee, but Joshua does. So he gets his flavored coffees, and what do I get? Hot Apple Cider, Milk Chocolate Hot Cocoa, Chai Latte, Southern Sweet Iced Tea, Brewed Raspberry Tea. Oh, so many possibilities. 
WHERE I BOUGHT IT: This was a Christmas gift last year from my daddy-o. Ours is the Special Edition B60— not sure what that means, but it has a removable tray to fit go-cups under it and 3 different brewing sizes. Check out Amazon, Target, Walmart, Kohls, Bed Bath & Beyond… just about everywhere has these babies.
10 ♥ Breaking Dawn Part 1 Soundtrack
WHY YOU NEED THIS: What? Don’t we all have our guilty pleasures? It doesn’t matter that I listen to this obsessively on my drive to-and-from work each day. It relaxes me. So it will relax you, too. Movie-seeing and book-reading not required.
WHERE I BOUGHT IT: In store at Target while it was on sale. 
11 ♥ Jo Totes Rose Camera Bag
WHY YOU NEED THIS: It’s the prettiest, girliest, most functional camera bag ever! At $89, it’s one of the most affordable, too. My Jo Tote fits my Canon camera, 3-4 lenses, and all of my regular purse contents so that I only have to take this with me when I’m going out & about with my camera. Love, love love.
WHERE I BOUGHT IT: Online at JoTotes. There are a bunch of other gorgeous colors & styles, too.
12 ♥ Tupperware Vent ‘N Serve
WHY YOU NEED THIS: Um, hello? Who doesn’t like to keep their food fresh? Haha, really though— this is my favorite Tupperware. They’re microwavable containers and they are FAB for leftovers. The next day, I can pop it straight into the microwave and voila! No extra dirty dishes. I know Tupperware can be expensive, so if you’re in the market to invest in some— this is my #1 choice. 
WHERE I BOUGHT IT: I hosted a party with my mom a couple years back, so I got the full set at a huge discount. Definitely do it that way to save the most money.
13 ♥ Hobo Lauren Clutch
WHY YOU NEED THIS: It’s a double frame clutch wallet that holds all your IDs, cash, cards, phone and even lip gloss! I got this after reading the amazing review on PinkLouLou’s blog. I wanted a neutral color so I got it in Stone. I love that it’s my wallet but it’s also a clutch, so I can carry it in my purse or on its own.
WHERE I BOUGHT IT: LouLou is right about shopping around. I got mine on eBay! 
14 ♥ Ugg Bailey Button Triplet Boots
WHY YOU NEED THIS: They are like slipping your feet into heaven. I really never got into Uggs because they were so ugly. Then, just a month or so ago, I tried on my first pair ever— barefoot. They were so comfy they became cute. So cute, they are my new favorite boots. Love.
WHERE I BOUGHT IT: Also on base, at the PX. Definitely shop around for these… I paid nowhere near the $200 price tag on the Ugg website!

A Week in the Web

Phew, back home at last! I spent the last week up in New York visiting my mama (and dropping off Gypsy to stay with her a bit— we’ll be a one-dog family for awhile now), then in New Jersey for Felice’s bachelorette party & bridal shower! I’ll be sharing photos soon-ish.

So although I haven’t had much time to write (work & business to attend to since I’ve been home), I have been keeping up with my blog reading, and these are my top picks of interesting/cool/touching/fun blog posts I’ve read recently. Thought you might enjoy while I spend the day unpacking (and sick in bed, sniffle sniffle).

+ New website with beauty tips & tutorials from Lauren Conrad & Co!
+ A really, really creative & thoughtful video a girl made for her deployed Marine.
+ An awesome post about self-image and loving the body you’re in.
+ Cool ideas to help emotional organization & being healthy sans the gym.
+ A military spouse’s biggest fear… two weeks before her husband was supposed to return.
+ My newest favoritest blog from a twenty-something on blogging like a pro.
+ Fashion find! What to wear to fairs & festivals.
+ An awesome tip on travel photography that I will be trying on my next trip!
+ Borders is going out of business: I picked up this book last week I can’t wait to read!

Perplexed.

This is me. Staring at my computer screen. Thinking, “What was I supposed to be doing?”

I just don’t know what to do next. So much to do, but not a clue where to start. I hate when this happens.

I seriously spend way too much time online. Most often, I call it “research.” Research for my website, research for work, research for my blog, research for inspiration.

But really, I need to stop “researching” so much and start DOING.

I have so many ideas for projects, blog posts, business concepts, etc. and I need to put them into ACTION! Like starting an Etsy shop? That’s something I’ve been wanting to do for awhile. And getting my site up and running? Another on the list. Updating my scrapbooks? Eternally on the list. It goes on… and on… and on.

Right now, just a few of my top [non-work related] projects include:

  • completing/sending my wedding save the dates
  • launching the wedding website I made for Joshua & I
  • completing/launching my new design website
  • creating a new blog for design/business/craftiness/fun
  • deciding what to do with this blog (keep it separate? delete it? merge it with the new blog? help!)
  • my December Daily album
  • Inspiration Everywhere workshop
  • Blog Love e-course
  • scrapbooking the last million years of my life

How do you stay motivated and make the time to get your projects done?

I think I’ll go organize my closet. ;-)

Boston, Pink Hair, & Parties

Me & Sue
Boston was, of course, a fabulous time with Sue and Amanda. Sue looks FANTASTIC despite her recent surgery, and insisted on taking the T instead of letting me drive us to Quincy Market. We picked up lunch at the marketplace in Faneuil Hall and ate outside on the steps so we could people-watch. I miss Boston so much. If I could choose to live anywhere in the world, it would be Boston again. If only there were a Marine Corps base there!
Amanda & Sue
After lunch, we shopped around a bit at Urban Outfitters. I got the most awesome pint glasses there for Joshua & my apartment! Then Sue took us for cupcakes in the North End at a little Italian bakery called Modern Pastry. We sat outside and enjoyed them, then headed back to Sue’s apartment and Amanda and I headed home to NY not too late.
Modern Pastry
Friday, at my hair appointment, I got a full head of highlights for Joshua’s homecoming (quite the treat since I usually only do a half head!). I also donated $10 to Pink Hair for Hope for breast cancer awareness and got a hot pink hair extension. It’s so cute! I asked her to put it in so it’s hidden… so it’s behind my ear and you can’t really see it unless I put my hair in a half ponytail. I feel like such a little rebel with my streak of hot pink hair! Check here to see if a salon in your area is participating.
Today was the surprise 50th birthday party for my aunt. She was completely shocked and it was so nice to see everything being done for her for a change since she’s always the one to give, give, give. Her birthday isn’t until October, but my uncle wanted to throw her off. It was the first family function where my dad brought his girlfriend and my mom met her… it was weird. Nothing horrible happened, it was just an interesting party. My mom didn’t bring her boyfriend, either. We went together. It was catered at a family member’s house, and my uncle hired a DJ and a magician. Yes, magician! So silly. It was great to see my cousins and family friends before heading south, though. Good day!
I broke my to-do list down a bit more. It helps me, haha. It also helps when my real-life friends comment on my list and ask what else I’ve finished and what I still have to do. Thanks, friends!
TO DO:
1. clean/organize bedroom 
  • closet
  • bookshelf
  • desk
  • dressers
  • shoes
  • makeup
  • jewelry
  • hair accessories
  • bags & purses
  • scrapbook supplies
  • wedding things
2. organize boxes in basement 
  • college papers
  • art portfolios
  • art supplies
  • extra clothes
  • winter clothes
  • kitchen things
  • decor things
  • desk supplies
  • sewing supplies
  • books & magazines
  • Joshua’s things
  • holiday decorations
3. pack!!! 
  • kitchen
  • bathroom
  • sheets & linens
  • towels
  • toiletries
  • clothes
  • shoes
  • makeup
  • jewelry
  • hair accessories
  • perfume
  • nail polish
  • bags & purses
  • scrapbook supplies
  • desk supplies
  • DVDs
  • books
  • workout gear
  • iMac & laptop
  • Joshua’s things
  • portfolio
  • stationery
4. send clothes to Good Will
5. make appointment with event planner 
6. update wedding binder
7. get car visor replaced 
8. make hair appointment 
9. organize boxes in garage
10. photograph portfolio 
11. return clothes to Victoria’s Secret
12. send claim for contacts to insurance
13. update recipe binder
14. burn backup CDs of photos
15. load new music to iMac
16. scan scrapbook layouts 
17. organize/pack Joshua’s things
18. prep Mom for her interview :-)
TO GO:
20. BJ’s with Uncle Tom 
21. meet with 1st event planner 
22. crepes with Alison & Liz 
23. visit Sue in Boston 
24. hair appointment 
25. Aunt Vicki’s surprise birthday party

Okay, so since I had to add some things to my list, I also had to take some things off. I didn’t go to the meeting with the 2nd event planner or to Alison & Eric’s party. I also didn’t make plans to meet Beth & Josh for lunch, or the florist or DJ. I’ll have to wait until I’m next home in October to do that. Just too much to do, and I’m supposed to leave tomorrow! Ahhhhh! Freaking out now. Maybe I should wait to leave Monday afternoon, when my Mom & cousin Matthew are leaving to come down to help me move in? I was trying to get a head start, but… there’s still so much to be done.

Boston Today!

Today I’m off to Boston to visit my bff Sue! She has a blog too, about her adventures as a single gal living in my favorite city in the whole world, Boston. She recently had surgery and will be out of work 6-8 weeks, which I just know will drive her crazy because she’s used to working nonstop, 25/7, and for the most part enjoys it. But I have to visit her one last time before I move, especially now when she can use the company!

My closest cousin, Amanda, is coming with me for the day. It’s the only day off she has all week, and we’ve also wanted to spend time together before I move. So I get to see two of my favorite people today and take a break from packing and my to-do list! Speaking of…

TO DO:
1. clean/organize bedroom 
2. organize boxes in basement 
3. pack!!! 
4. send clothes to Good Will
5. make appointment with florist 
6. make appointment with event planner 
7. make appointment with DJ 
8. update wedding binder
9. get car visor replaced (done! thanks to my cousin, Eric!)
10. make hair appointment 
11. organize boxes in garage
12. photograph portfolio 
13. return clothes to Victoria’s Secret 
14. send claim for contacts to insurance
15. update recipe binder 
16. burn backup CDs of photos 
17. load new music to iMac 
18. scan scrapbook layouts 
TO GO:
20. BJ’s with Uncle Tom 
21. meet with 1st event planner 
22. crepes with Alison & Liz 
23. visit Sue in Boston 
24. hair appointment (Friday morning)
25. Aunt Vicki’s surprise birthday party (Saturday afternoon)
26. Alison & Eric’s party (Saturday night)
27. meet with 2nd event planner (Friday morning— new appointment since we weren’t crazy with the first one we met with)
Crossed a few things off, yay! After today, 3 days to go to complete everything. Oh, my. I did have a bit of a break yesterday though… after meeting with the event planner (which went okay, more on that another time…), Mom and I stopped by our favorite little shop and got Vera Bradley yoga mats… on sale! And I got 2 new Pandora charms. NO MORE SPENDING FOR ME, okay? Okay. :-)

P.S. My love called twice yesterday after over a week since last hearing from him… I love that man! He always knows just what to say and we always have the best conversations in the world… I can’t wait until he’s home! It’s been a very long, stressful, dangerous, anxious, scary deployment!