Friday, December 30, 2011

I'll take a birthday party, with a little side of fabulous...

So, a couple of weeks back (December 17th to be exact) I attended my dear friend Jennifer's birthday was a milestone birthday and she had recently finished up a major renovation to her new condo, so it was the perfect time to celebrate.  And we did. :)

I took a few pictures of the evening...which was such a fun time!  

A birthday + a fabulous condo, decked out for the holidays + a lovely collection of friends = a wonderful evening.

Thanks for having a birthday party Jennifer!!
How gorgeous does this birthday girl look?!

Birthday cake balls....balls down Tina! ;)

fantastic chair from Anthropologie

the best cake I've ever had....ever....from Sensational Bites on Southport..

Thursday, December 29, 2011

favorite gift

Hi there.  How is everyone doing?

I hope everyone had a lovely holiday, and that Santa was good to you. 

My hands down favorite gift of Christmas day was a book.....that I never expected to get....from B. 

If you've been reading the blog since the beginning, you know of my admiration for Scott Schuman...the man behind the blog The Sartorialist.  Well, I was lucky enough to receive his book early (um, 6 a.m. to be exact ...thanks to our 9 year old ;)) Christmas morning.

As an adult, there are very few things that are pure surprises when it comes to Christmas....but this was one of those rare moments when I genuinuely had no clue what was wrapped and presented to me.

As I unwrapped it, a huge smile spread across my face...and you could tell that B was thrilled with my reaction.  Even now as I type this, it makes me smile.

Several times that morning I was 'caught' looking through the book intently, and you'd swear I had just won the lottery.  It has since then sparked several a conversation with B over the past few days.....and that, in my mind is the gift that keeps on giving.

I guess what I'm trying to express here is that with a mere $25, my whole day was made.  It's not about the amount that is spent (and I'm not just talking about Christmas in general really), it's about the sentiment behind it.

I've also started something new when I buy or am gifted a it, and if it's a gift ..... writing the name of the person who gave it to me.  That way, when you go back to it years down the road, you'll always know when you got it (and from who).

What was your one stand out gift this holiday?

talk soon

Thursday, December 22, 2011

home sweet home


I am total nerd about shoe, I'm a big fan of the picture on the left.  And I love that the little girl in the painting
has what appears to be a bandaid on her funny :)



rowley says that this gold piano doubles as an ice bucket during parties. ;)

hmmm, this scene looks very familiar to my house....


I love getting to see people in their home setting.....I think it speaks volumes to the kind of person they are.  What makes them tick, if you will.

I saw these pictures of designer Cynthia Rowley with her daughters Gigi and Kit at their place in New York, and I was immediately drawn in.  All of the little details.  I love that their table is marked-up and clearly used as the location for all kinds of kids very much resembles the coffee table in my own house. 

We've had it now for 14 years (ridiculous, I know)...and B and I often talk about getting a new one, but it's the one place our daughter LOVES to do her drawing, writing of stories, etc..and well, it has gotten it's fair share of abuse...all sorts of nicks and crayon markings.  But, it has character. ;)

I like to walk into a home (whether in person, or through pictures) and learn something about that person....that family.

What does your place say about you?

talk soon


Wednesday, December 21, 2011

pump up the volume....

Ok're officially approaching emergency mode if you're still shopping.

If you happen to have someone on your list who LOVES music, and you're struggling with a gift Lucy Wrubel...the comedian turned DJ extraordinaire from Dallas....

She is the creator of  'Mix of the Month'....a service that organizes 80 minute mixes of music playlists that are gathered together thematically and delivered straight to your inbox...downloadable via iTunes!

Click on the Mix of the Month link above and check her site cool, and you it gives you the complete lowdown on who Lucy is, and where she draws her musical inspiration from.

Let me know if you check out her site...want to hear what you think.

talk soon.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

I'll get it!!!

Who here grew up with a house phone attached to the wall?  I know, I'm likely aging myself...but I vividly remember having loooong conversations while sitting (every which way mind you) on the stairs because the phone cord only stretched so far. 

Clearly that's not the case anymore....your phone can (and probably does) travel anywhere you do, sans any cord.

Now that's wonderful and all, but you have to admit this little guy below is pretty fun and cool.

And it would make an awesome know, since your shopping days are limited! :)

native union

Monday, December 19, 2011

messing with mother nature

I know, I shouldn't be wishing for a snowstorm....but, Christmas is this weekend, and I can't stomach the thought of a snow free holiday. 

Living in the Midwest, having actual seasons is one of the few weather 'perks' we, when I saw this picture today it made me smile......and wish for the white stuff.  How fun would it be to play in that on Christmas day?!

Happy Monday!

talk soon

Free 2-Day Shipping
image via Patagonia

Saturday, December 17, 2011

time to celebrate....

Today my dear friend Jennifer celebrates a milestone birthday......and I wish her many good things in this new decade of her life. 

image via pinterest

Tonight we shall drink cocktails!

Have a great weekend everyone!!....

and......the winner of the orla kiely laptop case from roztayger is................Michelle!!!! 
<insert hooting and hollering here>
Congratulations!  What a fun early holiday gift!

Thank you to everyone who entered, and another big shout out to Elizabeth Jeffer for her generosity with the giveaway.  I think I can safely speak for everyone who visits this blog, that we think roztayger is awesome!

talk soon


Friday, December 16, 2011

cocktail anyone?

It's Friday!!!! 

And no, that's not milk in that martini's the Winter Wonderland martini!  What a great way to go into the weekend...with everyone in holiday party mode, I thought it would be fun to share a holiday drink recipe.....

Let me know if you try it!!


2 oz. Van Gogh vanilla vodka
1 oz. White creme de cacao
2 oz. White chocolate liqueur
1 oz. cream
1/2 tsp. of coconut flakes
1 White chocolate wafer stick

add the vanilla vodka, white chocolate liqueur, creme de cacao and cream into a shaker and shake over ice.  Strain martini into a martini glass and add coconut flakes.  Stir martini gently, and add wafer stick.


And I have no idea why, but I cannot get enough of this induces me to sing out loud in my car, and do the shoulder dance (which, btw, I'm awesome at).....and I'm picturing making this martini, while this song is playing loudly in the background........admit it, you kind of love the song too..... ;)

talk soon.


ps. the roztayger giveaway is officially closed.....winner will be announced tomorrow morning!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

let's hear it for the boys.....

Raise your hand if you have a guy to buy for.....raise the other hand if that task isn't always so easy......

B (husband) is never going to ask for your typical gift.  Ever.  So, creativity needs to play a big part in finding something cool for him.

He had been eyeing #1 on the list below, so that was quickly purchased....have to act fast!

Check out the list below for some cool days are ticking by!

talk soon

ps: don't forget...the roztayger giveaway (of the orla kiely laptop case) closes tomorrow morning at 10!  Don't miss out on a chance to enter..........and be sure to sign up on the roztayger website for their email notifications!

1 // 2 // 3 // 4  // 5  // 6 // 7

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Some cream with your coffee table book?

Ok, we're getting close to, really close!!  I'm still running around picking up a few more gifts..and then onto the wrapping (which is my favorite part).

If you're still looking for ideas, and you have a booklover on your list...consider a coffee table book.  I personally love them, and have several...and I would be thrilled to add any/all of the ones below to my collection.  I'm secretly (well, not so secretly since I'm announcing it here!) hoping that Santa brings me Design Sponge and The Sartorialist  (if you're new to the blog, go back to the beginning and see my post on Scott Schuman).

1 // 2  // 3  // 4  // 5 // 6

Are you a fan of coffee table books?  If so, which ones do you have that you love?  Always looking for great suggestions!

talk soon


And remember to go and enter the roztayger giveaway!!  You have until Friday morning at 10am!  It will be like an early Christmas gift....that Orla Kiely laptop case is so cool!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Meet roztayger..... + an exciting giveaway!!

Hi everyone...happy Tuesday!

I'm excited to introduce you to a fantastic online shopping destination offering a carefully edited selection of men’s and women’s handbags, totes, wallets, briefcases, travel bags, electronic cases and other small leather goods......roztayger.

Founder Elizabeth Jeffer (who was lovely via, I can only imagine how lovely she is in person!), had an extensive career in fashion accessories (in SF + NYC) prior to developing the idea for roztayger.

Elizabeth's true inspiration for this venture stems from her beloved grandmother, Rosalind Tiger (pronounced Tayger), who was an avid art collector and interior designer with an eye for fashion who encouraged Elizabeth to follow her artistic dreams. 

The roztayger mission is create a one-stop shopping experience for well-made, versatile + timeless work. travel. life accessories.

Elizabeth has offered a wonderful giveaway to '40 is the new 30' blog Orla Kiely laptop case, valued at $92!!!

Ok, so here's how you enter for a chance to win it!  Each bullet below counts as a separate entry!!

  • Go to and take a look around....come back to '40 is the new 30' and leave a comment with the piece you'd love to have!
  • While on go to the upper right hand and click on the link that reads 'sign up for news & promotions' and enter your email address!  We need to help Elizabeth build her contact list!
  • 'Like' roztayger on facebook
  • Spread the word about roztayger....tweet away! And let me know that you did!

  • You must become an official follower of '40 is the new 30' through either Google Friend Connect (follow publicly so I can see you!) or Bloglovin' (click on that crazy looking lady!) and let me know that you did so!
  • 'Like' 40 is the new 30 on facebook and let me know that you did so!

Ok, the giveaway is officially open until Friday morning at 10 a.m., with a winner to be selected at random and announced on Saturday!

Now, go enter!!!

talk soon


Saturday, December 10, 2011

happy day!

Today, my friend Laurel celebrates a momentous, today's post is dedicated to her.  Enjoy your day!!...make sure to take it all in. :)

You know, I hear that 40 is the new 30........ ;)

Friday, December 9, 2011

want vs. need

There's this nagging little phrase......want vs. need......and I know personally, it's made me walk away from making many a purchase.

Bottom line...there are very few things we actually need.  Decent shelter, some food + water, clothes on your back, etc.

Want, well...that's a whole different story.....

Here are some items I want and could easily convince myself that I need....but we all know the truth. ;)

What are some of your 'want' items this holiday season?

B -If you're reading this....I really need that mouse pad...and that gold satchel. ;)

talk soon

1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5

Thursday, December 8, 2011

a little scarab with your cocktail ring?

Scarab Cocktail Ring

I'm a big fan of oversized rings, especially those featuring animals/critters.  Call me crazy, but I love them!  Check this ring out on OpenSky (have you created an account there yet?  If you haven't, you should!)'s one of Cynthia Rowley's picks (and who doesn't love Cynthia Rowley?!)...

I've been wearing 'big' jewelry for years now, and I've gotten my fair share of double takes/comments from each his/her own, right?

What about you?  Are you a fan of oversized jewelry? 

talk soon


Wednesday, December 7, 2011


image via fiskars

It's my birthday people!  And well, I'm excited about it...just like I am every year.  :)

Every year I tell myself that I'm going to make 'something' happen, or make a great change in my life, and as I drove into work today I re-thought that.  This year instead of some grand gesture, I'm going to focus on enjoying each and every day.....or finding at least one thing that makes me smile.  So, here's to that!

So, if you're out and about today and a cupcake happens to cross your path, snag a little  'Cheers!' and enjoy!

talk soon.


Tuesday, December 6, 2011

mountain retreat

Big Sky, Montana......check out this amazing home...every single room is cozy, yet incredibly sophisticated. 


Monday, December 5, 2011

oddly wonderful....

1 // 2

How fun are these lucite items from Anthropologie?!  That side table is almost have to do a double take at first glance to make sure it's actually there.  And, the trinket box would be perfect for some fun pieces of jewelry.

Giveaway alert!  The winner of the holiday cd is Mallory Sitkowski!!!  Get ready to crank that music up! 

talk soon


Saturday, December 3, 2011

saturday snapshots

Happy weekend everyone!
It's raining steadily outside today, but we threw on our wellies and hit the little grocery store in town....some instagram pics below....

I'm excited about the early birthday dinner that I get to share with my 2 favorite people tonight....4 more days until my big day! :)

What are your plans this weekend? Holiday shopping?  Hanging out?  Do tell!

talk soon


Friday, December 2, 2011

Style Crush...

This post is dedicated to Mallory...perhaps one of the most stylish women I know.

Meet Kate Ciepluch - Fashion Director for digital shopping site extraordinaire, ShopBop. 

She is a true example of someone who worked their way up the ranks.  She began on the sales floor (during her freshman year at Univ. of Wisconsin), folding t-shirts and hanging dresses at the then little known company......when she graduated, she moved to NYC, and as the brand went viral, she continued her way up the corporate ladder, helping to launch their handbag, footwear, jewelry and swim categories.  Ultimately helping ShopBop evolve into the leading contemporary fashion destination that it is today. 

She's got a fantastic laid-back style that is smart and pulled together, and is one to continue to watch for sure!

who are some of your style crushes?

Don't forget to enter the giveaway for the holiday cd!!!

talk soon!


Thursday, December 1, 2011

it's beginning to sound a lot like Christmas.............

Happy December everyone!!!

We can officially begin listening to Christmas music on repeat....and in order to do that we need a great new playlist.............and thanks to my graphic/interior design guru, Matthew...we have a that playlist!  You'll meet him in the near future, in a 'Man of Style' post.

Check out the songs...they are all available on iTunes (& Amazon)...and the great thing is you don't have to sift through countless Christmas cd's to find one that's good........that work has been done for you!  <thanks Matthew!>

Also, I'm happy to announce my very 1st giveaway!!!  You can win a cd of this holiday can, you can!!!

To enter you must:
  • be a follower of this little blog through google friend connect
  • leave a comment and let me know your favorite holiday song,
  • and, for an extra must invite a friend to check the blog out and have them become a follower through google friend connect...and let me know that you did so!

I'll be announcing the winner on Monday morning!  24 more days until Christmas!

talk soon

check out some of the songs!
3 / 5 / 11 / 12  / 13

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

the story of.....

1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6

I have always been a fan of tortoise fact I still have a bracelet from when I was a little girl...a little cuff.  So many fun options out there!

And the hare....I have no real 'place' in my house for this lovely little gal, but I absolutely love her...and think she would look so cool on the wall.

I hope you all have a great Wednesday!

A quick random marks not only the end of November, but also 30 days in a row of me posting!!  Woo hoo! <insert pat on the back here>  My friend cck introduced me to BlogHer...and through that NaBloPoMo....National Blog Posting Month.  The challenge was to post every day for the entire month of November...and I did it!!!  I must admit some days were easier than others, but all in all it was a wonderful experience (thanks cck!).

Thank you to all who come and visit the blog, and a special thank you to those who comment...those comments make my day!  If you enjoy what you see/read...tell your friends!! :)

talk soon!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011


Raise your hand if you wear glasses?  Raise your hand if you get sick of your glasses after a year or so?

I have both hands up in the air!

Meet Warby online eyeglass shop....prescription lenses/fantastically stylish frames......for.....$95! They also have sunglasses!

A great service they offer is the try-on at home feature........peruse the site...pick out 5 frames that you'd like to try on....and they will send them to you to play with for 5 days!  Ask your friends/family which frame(s) look best on return them (they pay shippping) and then you can order online! glasses at your doorstep!

Earlier this year I picked up two pairs....the Beckett and the them both and get all sorts of compliments on them. :)

If you need glasses to actually see....or just love the look of a cool frame as an accessory, I highly suggest checking them out!

And if you happen to be lucky enough to be in NYC - SoHo (to be exact) anytime in the next 5 weeks, check out their pop-up shop....Warby Parker's Holiday Bazaar.

see ya later! ;)

Monday, November 28, 2011

Monday mania

I took the day off today (which I've decided will be my new tradition....stores are nice and quiet since everyone's gone back to work...or they are glued to their computers for cyber Monday!) to start in on my list of Christmas shopping......and I'm proud to say that I officially have 11 people done!

Plenty more to still do, but I felt a huge sense of accomplishment when I got home...huge!

I got home to find this fun surprise in my mailbox....I love Elle Decor. (who am I kidding, it's a magazine, of course I love it ;)).  Can't wait to read it tonight. 

This little gal showed up in our house today Evan (how cute is her pixie cut?!), our elf scout from the North Pole....her 'job' from today until Christmas Eve will be to monitor Ryan's behavior and report back to Santa.  Each night she travels back to the North Pole to give her report, and every morning she will be land in a different spot in our house.  The important thing to remember here is that she cannot be touched by Ms. Ryan....or she will lose her magic and not be able to travel back to the North Pole.......I'll let you know every once in awhile how things are coming along. ;)

And finally......I enjoyed my first night by light of the Christmas tree last was the view from my seat on the couch....pretty awesome. 

Sunday, November 27, 2011


Today our house went from gourds (for Thanksgiving) to full on Christmas cheer....and I must admit that I love it.

A few pictures of the current state of our place....

ahhh, Christmas is officially in the air....

powder room cheer

kitchen island cheer

I'm giddy with the thought of settling in to watch a show or two by the lit up Christmas tree is hands down the thing I will enjoy most over the next five weeks or so....the white lights on the tree, a lit candle, etc.....all of these equaling a cozy evening.

Hope you had a lovely weekend.

talk soon