The Last, Oh, 4 Months?

Someone has been a bit behind on the whole blogging front, but a lot has been happening, so here is a handy lil catch up on things around here.

IMG_1072Christmas was nice as usual, and included visits from family and friends, a fun night out downtown and all of our traditions that make the season so special.

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New Year’s Eve was spent with good friends at a hotel party in Denver. And reiterated my belief that getting ready with the girls is usually more fun than the actual event.

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In mid-January my mom and I went to Vegas for her surprise Christmas gift. Our main event was seeing the Rod Stewart concert at Caesar’s, which was amazing, but we also fit in shopping and a lot of chatting over food and drinks. It was too cold to do our usual Vegas activity, the pool, but it just means we’ll have to go back soon!

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In February my cousin Mary and I went on our annual trip to visit our cousin Dan. We had a great time in Winston-Salem, NC and got to see Wake win and spend a lot of time together.

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Over President’s Day weekend I went back to LA for a sorority sister’s wedding and to see some friends. It was a great trip. I got to catch up with a lot of people I haven’t seen recently, ate at most of my favorite restaurants and even got to have a little beach time.

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In March Megan came for a visit and we spent the weekend in Steamboat Springs. Great skiing and a really fun town.

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Our Chrismas

This Christmas will be the 5th that Luke and I are together for… or I suppose I should say, in a relationship for. You see, in 5 years, we have never spent Christmas Day together. People have always thought this was kind of weird, and maybe it is, but to me it’s a testament to how dedicated we each are to our own families… and what we will eventually bring together to make our family someday. We both come from families with very time-honored traditions. Neither of us grew up going to Cabo one year, staying home the next, visiting family in Chicago another, we always had Christmas at home with our entire families, doing the same things each year. So, neither of us feels quite ready to sacrifice that special time, yet.

To make up for being apart for the big holiday, which is difficult, though we both know we are where we should be, we have a tradition of having our own Christmas before we part. And tonight, we are celebrating it before Luke flies home to California tomorrow. I make a big, fancy dinner, we open our gifts, and then eat dessert while watching a Christmas movie. It’s become something very special to us.

Tonight I will be making pork tenderloin in a pear cream sauce, risotto and a caesar salad. Depending on how they turn out, I will be sure to share the recipe. Also, if you know of any good cocktails requiring peach schnapps, let me know. I had to buy a whole bottle (isn’t it pretty?) and will only use a little bit tonight.

Updating Traditions

Every year during Christmas time, Luke and I would drive down to South Coast Plaza in Costa Mesa and spend a day Christmas shopping. We would shop for our families and friends, as well as pick out gifts for each other. It became a fun tradition, and was nice because as I so cornily say, it’s about the memories, not just the gifts. Amid our crazy day of shopping, we would also visit Lawry’s Carvery for a decadent lunch with wine.

Now that we live in Denver, it’s time to make a new, similar tradition. So today, after brunch at my parents’ home, we’re driving down to Cherry Creek Mall to select our gifts for each other and finish our shopping and have a delicious late lunch at the Cherry Creek Grill (where I will still be able to get my traditional Christmas shopping lunch, a Prime Rib Sandwich). Now if only I could decide what I want this year…

Luke enjoying the wine and waiting for our lunch

Enamel

I’ve been a fan of enamel jewelry for some time. My first piece was this fun Tiffany ring that Luke gave me for our 4-year anniversary.

Last year, I asked for a Henri Bendel enamel bracelet for Christmas, and have gotten a lot of compliments on it.

And just last week when doing some Christmas shopping, I found that J.Crew has most of their enamel bracelets on sale. I picked these three up for $41 and change. Originally they would have been over $60. I may have to go back for the lemon one as well.

Christmas List 2011

This is what’s on my list this year (clockwise from top):

1. David Yurman bangle

2. Celine High Vamp Pump

3. Nordstrom scarf

4. New Florence + The Machine CD

5. Crate and Barrel Parson’s Square Coffee Table with Travertine Top

6. Tiffany Pearl Earrings

7. Dwell Studio Amythest Throw

8. Nike Pullover

9. House Beautiful Subscription

10. Red Tall Glossy Hunter Boots

11. Giro Ski Helmet

12. Photoshop

13. Flight to Playa del Carmen for annual girl’s getaway

What’s on yours?

I Did it Again…

With all of the business of the start of the holiday season, and some major procrastination, I have a lot of blogging to catch up on.

Thanksgiving: Even when I was in school, I never appreciated how great of a holiday Thanksgiving is. Purely from a “real world” perspective, it’s great because you get an automatic 4-day weekend, unlike any of the other holidays. Having 4 days off from work and staying in one place, rather than traveling, was just what I needed this year. I got to see my friends who came to town, spend a lot of time with family, relax with Luke and just decompress before the craziness that will be the next 24 days.

Tree Cutting: Every year my family goes up to the mountains to cut down our trees for Christmas. Over the years our group has altered and changed based on traveling and other plans, but some group of us goes up the Friday after Thanksgiving. This marked Luke’s first tree cutting experience, and we had a great time. We were able to find full(ish) trees for everyone, had a nice time walking around in the woods and then had a good lunch. Luke was worried about what kind of tree we would find for our place (he’s used to perfect tree lot trees) but after some searching we found ours.

Nebraska: Earlier this week I went on a whirlwind 22 hour trip to Lincoln for the Wake Forest/Nebraska game. My cousin Dan is an assistant coach at Wake, and when I heard he was playing a game west of the Mississippi, I knew I had to go. My mom, dad, uncle and I flew out to Omaha and drove to Lincoln and had a great time at the game — they won! — and got to spend a bit of time with Dan. I’m hoping to make it out to Winston-Salem for a home game in January.

December: I am so stoked for this month! There are a lot of exciting things going on, in addition to the usual Christmas festivities, and I am so excited for it all.

Upcoming Reno

So excited for what I have in store for the master bedroom! I’ve purchased most of the provisions, but won’t be changing anything for a few weeks because part of it is a Christmas gift for Luke. In the meantime, I will keep sneaking into the guest bedroom closet where I’ve hidden everything to look at it all! Here is one of the accent colors (courtesy of Pantone)…