14×2014 Recap

14x2014 recapIt’s judgement day. In mid-January I gave myself a list of 14 things to do before the year was over. Did I or didn’t I?

Well. I did some. I thought about them a lot. Writing down goals and not finishing all of them does wonders for showing where your priorities lie. Here’s my update:

  1. Finish sewing maxi dress started three summers ago (fabric purchase documented here). My Mom broke the news that we had fudged the straps beyond repair. I believed her enough to not do anything about it, but I’m keeping all the pieces in hopes that I’ll come up with a clever solution.
  2. Complete first three levels of a French language program. Nay.
  3. Learn to play a song from start to finish on the guitar. Nay.
  4. Make first purchase for art collection. I made more of my own art. I hogged more of Konrad’s art. Does that count?
  5. Hang art in every room in house. I have designated pieces for certain rooms, but they currently lean against their walls.
  6. Harvest fruits, veggies, and flowers from garden. We opted to not go through the heartache of a failed garden this year. But! I did decide to start planting lots of perennials in the coming Spring, for an easy, pretty backyard.
  7. Read 12 books. I read 5 1/2 books.
  8. Set up server/storage system for home computers. I did this! At least. I setup an automatic backup system for my laptop. And it feels good.
  9. Practice each style from calligraphy book. I did more hand-lettering, but alas, I didn’t get through the book. I bought more calligraphy books though. 🙂
  10. Fill a notebook with paintings. It takes me so long to fill notebooks. Nay.
  11. Open Etsy store with digital goods. I am sooo close to doing this. I have files ready. Soon.
  12. Document life with more photos. I did this! YAY. More photos needed for 2015 infinity forever though.
  13. Direct short film. Does this count?
  14. Learn to Slide (made famous by Michael Jackson). Nay. But this is moving to the 2015 list for sure.

Obviously I didn’t do so well. Next year, right?


Wishing You a Merry Christmas!

merry christmasI’ll be taking the rest of the week off from Estate to truly slow down and enjoy the season, but I wanted to wish a very merry Christmas/Solstice/Hanukkah/etc to all my readers. I hope this holiday season has treated you well.

See you next week with end of the year wrap-ups!

Last Minute Celebration Suggestions

holiday suggestionsBefore I dash off to celebrate with family for the next few days, I wanted to share two quick ideas to add a little extra something to your Christmas 🙂

For Christmas Eve

The street I lived on growing up did something called Santa’s Runway, where everyone in the neighborhood would make lanterns to line the entire street so Santa could see as he arrived. Even though I was old enough to know better when we moved there, I always loved seeing the whole street lit up. It’s so pretty and simple to do. Even if you don’t want to take on an entire street, a lined driveway is a really nice effect.

For Christmas Morning

Mimosas! Another easy tradition that I think is perfect for after all the gifts have been opened. We’ve never set out an actual mimosa bar, but I think the juices and fruit above are so pretty laid out together.

lanterns via Design*Sponge and drink bar via DesignLoveFest

Our 2013 Christmas Cards

Our 2013 Christmas Cards - Full ListNow that our intended recipients should have received their cards, I can finally share what we sent out this year! We are definitely of the handmade type, and this year we thought it’d be fun to make a list of our favorite Christmas things. We ended up sort of ordering them by how Christmas day actually pans out, so it seems a little gift-centric in the beginning, but hopefully you can overlook that 😉

Our 2013 Christmas Cards - Illustration overview
I wrote out this lists (nothing special, just my handwriting which got more hurried as my wrist started to protest), and Konrad painted a little something for each item.

Our 2013 Christmas Cards - Detail
Even though we followed the same format for everything, each card definitely has its own details.

Our 2013 Christmas Cards - Featuring the cats!
Our cats even make a mini feature in two of the cards! Be still my heart!

I’m curious, do you send out Christmas cards? Handmade, or are you a Christmas photo type? (both are good!)

Give Yourself the Best Free Early Christmas Gift

Momentum Chrome ExtensionFor anyone who’s a Chrome user, I have the best suggestion for you to download right now. The Momentum extension replaces the standard Chrome home/empty tab page and replaces it with a beautiful living breathing homepage. The image changes everyday, along with a quote, and updated weather info. You also get a little to do list and the “What is your focus today?” prompt which I honestly appreciate seeing every morning. It’s a small change that makes your world a little brighter.

Download it here.

Currently Reading… Something Dark

Gone Girl on the KindleThis past week I decided to make one last go at squeezing in a book before the year ends. I’ve had Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn on my radar for quite awhile, and happened upon the Kindle edition for a couple bucks. I’m only a few chapters in, but so far I’m hooked.

The short, one sentence version: Gone Girl is a psychological thriller that volleys between a husbands account of his wife going missing, and the wife’s diary entries starting at the early days of their relationship.

Mysterious enough for you?

My Best Holiday Shopping Tip

how to find the impossible to find christmas giftChristmas is fast approaching and I’m sure many people out there are still frantically trying to track down that one specific gift for a special someone. I want to share a website I recently used to find a Playstation 4 (a birthday gift for Konrad).

It’s called whohas.it?, and it works exactly how you think it might. Once you’ve created an account, you can add products that you’re hoping to find, and tell it whether to contact you via email, text message, and/or browser notification when the product becomes available on a number of sites. The PS4 has been notoriously hard to track down as it was recently released, and there’s no way I would have scored it without this tool. I set it up to send to my email, and luckily I was at work and looking at my inbox when the message came in. I immediately bought it, and by the time I finished checking out, Best Buy had sold out already! Crazy, right?

Side Note: This post is not sponsored, I just wanted to share something that honestly worked awesome for me (I had been checking various sites every morning hoping to find them in stock). I hope it works for you too – happy shopping!