Days of Christmas Holiday Shopping Guide: 8-5

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8 MAIDS A MILKING

cow decalf coffee There’s just something about frothed milk that transforms a regular cup o’ joe into an udderly amazing treat.  Working as a stewardess, I have made my fair share of cappuccino’s over the years. I’ve used almost every aerating, steaming and frothing device available from battery operated, hand held wands to huge, industrial steaming machines yet none of them create a finer foam than my Bodum milk frother….I like it a latte! It’s the perfect gift for any coffee lover.

milk

latte6 Why not add an extra shot of joy to the gift and include a kit of latte stencils and decorating utensils so that your at home barista can espresso her creative side and take her morning beverage from depresso to coffee talk conversation worthy.

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lattetree latte1 latte3 And if you really want to get a handle on perfect gift giving, complete your java-licious present with a pretty decorative mug. mug2

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Anthroplogie has tons of beautiful options. milk5

I’ve really bean enjoying the one my sister got me for Christmas a few years ago.mi

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 7 SWANS A SWIMMING

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Let’s face it: we all have days where we feel more like an ugly duckling than a stunning swan, so it’s nice to find products that can help us put our best faces forward.  These are some of my favorite tricks of the beauty trade that I’m sure pretty much any girl would love to add to their cosmetic arsenal.

A Quality Set of Makeup Brushes

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CONICAL HAIR WAND

Whether you have pin straight hair or bouncy ringlets, I think every basically girl wishes for the same hair look; effortless flowing waves. Hair that says, “I woke up this way: gorgeous”.  Unfortunately achieving this unstyled look is not so effortless. I’ve tried everything from saltwater spray to moroccan oil trying to achieve the perfect imperfect hairstyle but it never came out quite right.  If used a curling iron the curls were to curly, if i used a flat iron they waves weren’t curly enough.  I was aiming for sexy tousled but usually ended more toddlers and tiaras…until I discovered THE WAND.  It’s called a wand because of it’s obvious shape resembling a light saber but it could also be because the results are nothing short of magic.  It doesn’t matter what hair type you have, once you wave this device around your strands, your hair type is officially perfection.  Now that have this device, my curling and flat irons have been forced into retirement, now just collecting dust under my bathroom sink with their older and never ever used relative, the crimping iron.

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Clarisonic

This hand held, rechargeable oscillating brush offers spa treatment results right at your fingertips. They say beauty is only skin deep, but you should probably exfoliate to make it shine it’s brightest.  After I used my Clarisonic for the first time I couldn’t get over how smooth my face felt and now I can’t imagine life without it. swan8swan9 Maybe it’s just me, but I seriously believe there is no such thing as having eyelashes that are too long…. well at least I used to feel that way until I started using Latisse.  This stuff is a bit pricey but worth every penny.  Originally designed as a treatment for glaucoma,  doctors began to notice that their test patients all seemed to have one thing in common……the product wasn’t helping their glaucoma as much as they’d hoped but everyone’s eyelashes looked Amazing! I wouldn’t have believed it myself if I hadn;t seen it with my own (gorgeously thick lashed) eyes…the stuff is magic.  It works so well I eventually found myself applying mascara one day and thinking the impossible; “Are my eyelashes too long? Should I maybe trim them?” Of course I didn’t but buyers beware: Do not use Latisse unless you are ready for compliments from strangers on a daily basis.  This stuff is basically miracle grow.  You know what a great problem to have is?  When it’s annoying that your eyelashes keep hitting your sunglass lenses because they’re JUST THAT LONG. swans Once you’ve been using Latisse  for a couple of weeks and have eyelashes that are nearly touching your eyebrows, might as well take it next level and use a great mascara. There are so many options that I find myself confused….volumizing, lengthening, curling, defining, smudge-proof, thickening, clump free, waterproof, extending, new and improved wand shape, separating bristles…..which one do I want?  How about one that does it all, is that too much too ask? Unlike a lot of beauty products where you can get by with a drugstore version just fine….quality and design really does matter when it comes to mascara.  There’s a fine line between  feminine pretty battable lashes and scary, chunky embarrassing  Tammy Faye Baker-esque disasters, a good mascara makes the difference.  My little sister recently turned me onto this brand and I  must say it’s the best mascara I’ve ever used.

ARBONNE IT’S A LONG STORY MASCARA

arbonne mascara The lightweight yet dramatic coverage makes it easy to see why Vanity Fair beauty blog picked this mascara as one of their top 5 picks.  If the rest of Arbonne’s products are as great as this, they are surely an up and coming company to keep your gorgeously lashed eyes on. lashes1 beautiful 6

6 GEESE A LAYING

I’m going to warn you ahead of time, I’m about to shell out and lay some egg-stroidinarily rotten puns but at least omletting you know in advance.  I just can’t help but crack these jokes, though I’ll try to get this section done and over easy as possible.  Just try and look at the sunny side, this is merely a quick segg-way that might crack you up a little bit before you get to number 5, which I promise is a hard one to beat.   eggs There are a few things in life you should own that mean you are officially an adult who has her shit together:

  •  towels of various sizes in your bathroom that all match
  • quality pots and pans
  • proper sets of wine glasses (red, white AND champagne)
  • a nice iron/ironing board
  • coasters

None of these items are necessities by any means but they are things that represent an intentional, curated grown up lifestyle versus just getting by.  Nobody wants to live like a college student forever and it’s the small things that make a world of difference.  This is one of the reasons I absolutely adore Egg Cups. egg Egg cups have been used since prehistoric times, achaeological recovery discovering the presence of egg cup use as early as the 18th century BC.  Despite their archaic roots, egg cups are refined defined. Practical and usually decorative, they are the rare perfect marriage of  both fashion and function which to me, is ultimate elegance. eggcup2 An egg cup is used when serving soft boiled eggs, another favorite thing of mine although I’m not sure if I love soft boiled eggs for their taste or because the whole presentation feels so civilized.  It’s almost the classic question: which came first my love of egg cups or the egg?” eggs10 The egg cup has to be one of the world’s simplest and successful ideas produced in countless 1000’s but really has become ‘collectable’ during the past few decades. Collecting egg cups is called “pocillovy.”  And you can use them for more than just eggs! They are an eegs-cellant way to stay organized and keep all of your office supplies from getting scrambled together.  ( warned you about the puns) eggart3

Egg cups are also adorable bud vases. They can be a perfect tiny arrangement for a guest bathroom:

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 …or a colorful, charming  addition to any tabletop.

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Succulents + Egg Cups are almost too perfect together, I practically can’t imagine succulents any other way. eggs12eggs13

The egg cups above clearly use Latisse!

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5 GOLDEN RINGS

When it comes to accessories for me they might as well be call EXCESSories, I always pile way too many on.  Understated is not the look I go for and I often end up  resembling a Christmas tree myself, sparkle and ornaments hanging from every limb. I went through a pretty major ‘arm party’ phase where my left wrist was piled with bangles and bracelets of every kind.  I think I eventually had tan lines from the ever-present collection of cuffs,  the 4 inch section of  my wrist pale from never seeing the light of day under all of my arm flare.  I’ve finally managed to grow out of that addiction, although every now and then I regress when getting dressed and think to myself “what does this outfit need…more bracelets!!!”.  Considering my bohemian bauble ‘more is more’ taste when it comes to all things that glitter, I am totally feeling the new trend of wearing rings on every finger that is sweeping style blogs  at the moment.  If you also like it, then you better put a ring on it.  Or 5 for that matter, just keeping piling them on…..the look is like fancy brass knuckles and a definite knockout gift to hand out. rings7 rings1 rings3rings5 rings2 ringz2

A perfectly foamed latte, products that make me feel pretty,

 elegant egg holders and stacks of gold rings.

These items may not be for everyone on my shopping list

but they are certainly a few of my favorite things.

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6 thoughts on “Days of Christmas Holiday Shopping Guide: 8-5

  1. Kate!
    I’ll try to control myself, now that I’m outside the confines of Twitter. You can stop me at any time, should I go mad with the freedom from counted spaces.
    I must ask: did you do the cow painting? Do you take your own photographs? (Isn’t it crazy that I used “photographs” instead of “pix”? There’s so much ROOM on here.)
    I’ll get over it. I’m just wondering if, on top of all your other remarkable talents, you paint, style & photograph on this delightful blog as well. Did you also paint the map? The colors are beautiful.
    Also, are you returning to Below Deck for at least one more season? The only reason you might decline would have to be because they’re giving you your own show. A great idea, incidentally.
    I love this recent entry. Funny thing, I bought two of those Anthropologie cups a couple of years ago in NYC. Two “d” cups. Originally one for my friend Diane, and one for me and my old nickname, Druid. However, I realized the error of my ways when I arrived at my hosts’ apartment just hours before returning to San Francisco. Diane and DAVID’s apartment. What was I thinking? I happily handed them over, still wrapped in tissue, before mistakenly stuffing one in my carry on and making a hasty exit. A momentary lapse in generosity, apparently. Selfishness averted just in the nick of time.
    I continue to love your writing, your attitude, etc. You are my new favorite wonder of the world. You can see whazzup with me on my website, if you like. I need to update & upgrade my writing on there, I know. But since it’s rarely Just about ME, I’m reporting more than creating. I will do better, I promise. You have inspired me.
    Now please answer my questions, ok?
    Thanks.
    Love, Lorraine

    • Hi! thank you so much for your comment, your are too kind with your compliments but I certainly enjoyed reading them as your writing style is quite funny and personable 🙂 TO answer your questions, no I did not paint anything that I posted on my blog though I do yearn for a set of watercolors, and I’m pretty sure that is what my sister is getting me for Christmas. I can neither confirm nor deny whether I will be on BDS3, but I’m thrilled that you enjoyed the show as it was such faun, life changing experience for me, I too have fallen victim to momentary lapses of generosity, and the good news is there are plenty of other D mugs out there in the world. The only thing I sometimes regret giving too much of is my time, which happens more often than I’d like but I am learning to be more frugal with that…unfortunately it always seems to be a lesson we have to learn the hard way, ya know? Most of all I am so incredibly happy to hear that you enjoy my writing as it is sometimes a thankless craft. I’ve been told a few times that I have a knack for it which is precisely why I also struggle in the 140 character world of Twitter..it’s like a word sudoku or some kind of reverse crossword puzzle. SO many times I find myself thinking ‘shit, what is a 3 letter word for enlightenment..’ I CAN NOT BE CONFINED BY YOUR RULES TWITTER, can I at least by a vowel?!? anyways, once again thank you for your encouragement which in turn has inspired me. xoxoK

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