FIFTY SHADES OF RESEARCH: Jamie Dornan told Elle UK how he ‘researched’ for his role as Christian Grey. I’m so torn on this movie, y’all. Like, I’ll definitely see it…but part of me thinks seeing it in a theatre would be très awkward. Just me?

GRAMMAR, CELEBRITIES, AND A CHOICE: This fun piece on the Oxford comma made me smile, especially with all the embedded celebrity tweets. I’m one of those terrible writers who isn’t consistent enough when using the Oxford comma. Do you have a stance on this pressing issue?

THE HEADSTAND: I love, love, loved this essay from Hallie. On headstands, mind over matter, and so much more. So worth the read as we head into the weekend.

WELL, THAT’S NO SURPRISE: I thought I would never be more glad to see a New Year’s Eve than I was on December 31, 2013. I was wrong: I really can’t wait for 2015. This year kind of was a downer, and the top Google searches of the year definitely prove it (also: Flappy birds!!!).

STEP BACK AND ASSESS: Over on The Well, as we wind down the month and focus on reflecting, I put together a post on taking a step back and assessing goals you set for yourself this year. And note, this is true whether you blog or not. I plan on spending some time on this after Christmas and before the new year…just sitting with thoughts and jotting down some ideas and reflections. It always refreshes me for the new year ahead!

TALKING WHILE FEMALE: In doing lots of post-Serial finale reading, I stumbled upon this YouTube video NPR put out in October. It’s all about how female voices are interpreted, and the potential biological responses people have to different voices. A short, interesting thing to watch.

AND SPEAKING OF SERIAL: If you listened, odds are, you want to talk about. So let’s do it: did you listen to the whole series yet? What do you think? Where do you come down after hearing the full season? Any theories? Did you like the finale? I’m firmly in the camp of should never have been convicted.

THE WHOLE INTERVIEW MESS: And yeah, about the whole The Interview mess. Crazy, no? I thought this op-ed on how it might end a certain type of satire was a good read.

FOR THE EGGNOG HATER: I must confess, I really hate eggnog (or any type of creamy beverage…barf). Jacquelyn’s eggnog donuts though — these, I could get behind.

GIVE ME ALL THE SWEATERS: Everlane just released a new collection of chunky wool sweaters, and if their sleeveless turtleneck wool sweaters are any indication, these will be good. Yeah, that sleeveless number? I’ve worn it a lottttt since getting it — trust me, it’s amazing. Even Joe complimented me on it! (PS, New Yorkers and SFers — did you know Everlane now has a same day delivery program? This is dangerous.).

Oy, what a news week, amiright? The Interview, Cuba, Pakistan, the end of Serial…I felt like I had loads of things to read and think about this week. Also true of life in general — after getting back from Texas on Tuesday, it was a race to the finish today to catch up on work. Luckily, this time of year isn’t as crazy as it could be (and people are more forgiving) since the holidays are just around the corner. Speaking of which, anyone doing anything fun for Christmas, Hannukah, et al? Joe and I are staying local, hoping for a little snow on Christmas Day, and making a 6+ hour bolognese again (we’ve really taken this whole “Christmas fettucine” thing to heart). One other fun thing to report from this week: we took Lucy on her first walk outside since her surgery! She’s doing really well, and slowly regaining strength. Her gait is a little funny right now, and if she goes too fast, she often stumbles, but she was SO excited to get outside and sniff, and seems confused (and a little disappointed) when we bring her back after a quick trip around the block. I’ve never been happier to go on a “pack walk” with my girl.

Wishing everyone a fabulous weekend ahead!

In this post:

Image via: my Instagram

This month's quote: "Trust the timing of your life."

5 Ikea Hacks I Want to Try

You know, whenever I have a garage and the space

ikea hacks i could actually make

Unsurprising confession: I dream about our future house. You know, the same one you probably dream about — the forever house, the one you end up staying in for at least 20, 30 years and can really put your stamp on. I’m always bookmarking ideas for that house, Ikea hacks definitely included. Recently I got inspired (and excited!) by a bunch of different projects I discovered, which I thought I’d share with you for your dream house (or now-house) file. I mean, for one thing, I think these are five Ikea hacks I could actually make! Yes, you’ll need some power tools and paint for a few of them, and having a garage probably wouldn’t hurt, but with the right supplies, all of these seem totally doable.

Have you ever attempted any awesome Ikea hack projects like this? Another unsurprising confession: the biggest one I’ve attempted was about 5 years ago, when I tried adding knobs I bought from Anthropologie to a MALM dresser. I didn’t have the right tools at the time, and the result was…interesting. Never underestimate the power of a really good drill (and drill bits too, people).


Marble and Copper Side Table (uses Ikea PS 2012 table)
Dipped Entry Table (used Ikea SVALBO table, which is discontinued; author recommended this table, but you could use any wood table to achieve the same look!)
Upholstered Bench (uses VITTSJÖ TV unit)
Magazine Organizers (uses Ikea KASSET files)
Rolling Bar Cart (uses Ikea VITTSJÖ laptop table)

In this post:

Images and Project Authors: Side Table, Style Me Pretty Living; Dipped Entry Table, The Sweet Beast; Upholstered Bench, Dwellings by Devore; Magazine Files, Homey Oh My; Rolling Bar Cart, Style Me Pretty Living

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Crushing On: AGONIST Parfums

Located at the intersection of art and smelling really good

agonist parfums

Hi from Houston! Yesterday, I was out doing some browsing with my grandmother and we decided to stop in to Kuhl-Linscomb. I had read about this home decor store before, but had no idea what I was in for — multiple buildings full of everything from linens, to furniture, to garden decor, dinnerware, everything. They even have a huge apothecary that carries every imaginable brand of candle and luxury or up-and-coming beauty brand. New Yorkers, it reminds me a lot of ABC Carpet & Home, actually. Long story short, you could spend hours browsing there.

I wandered into an area that housed tall shelves filled with all these perfume bottles, and of course, had to check ‘em out. I wasn’t familiar with the vast majority of the brands Kuhl-Linscomb was carrying — many were all from very small manufacturers, so it was perfume discovery (and packaging) heaven. I snapped a few pics of some, wanting to come home and do a little investigating about the brands. With AGONIST Parfums, I hit the jackpot for super cool, adding-to-my-list type companies.

AGONIST is a Swedish based perfume brand that launched in 2008. You can find bottles of their perfumes from the ‘Spray’ line at a few department stores (FYI, Neiman Marcus sells them), and their packaging is minimal, modern, and sleek (I fell in love!). What’s really cool about AGONIST though is their Sculpture line — the company creates individually handblown glass containers for their perfumes, each an expression of the fragrance itself and meant to enhance how you smell it. Since the pieces are all essentially unique, individual pieces of art, the Sculpture line is very pricey, but I thought the concept was really cool and it was interesting to see the fragrances interpreted as glass pieces.

My favorites from my limited sniffing were Solaris (lightly citrusy, it definitely reminded you of the sun) and Liquid Crystal, which was…well, it’s really hard to explain what exactly it smelled like. I think this is why AGONIST is such a perfect name for the company: you smell these fragrances, think of something and feel something, but can’t quite put your finger on what it is (although you know you like it). It truly does engage you in a bit of a struggle — though one of the most delightful kind. If you ever spot these in a store, I highly recommend you give ‘em a sniff!