Friday, November 29, 2013

A Christmas Playlist

Happy Black Friday, everybody! I hope you have fun getting started on your Christmas shopping, whether you're a mall shopper or an online deal-hunter. And I hope your Thanksgiving was absolutely wonderful. Because it's officially the day when you're allowed to start listening to Christmas tunes, allow me to share the "Best of" my embarrassingly long Christmas playlist:

Guaranteed to make road trips 300% more awesome. Please share some of your favorite Christmas songs with me! And have a very happy holiday weekend.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Gift Guide 2013: A Very Geeky Christmas

Hey guys! You remember how I said I was super good at giving gifts? I figured I'd try to back that up this year with a fun holiday gift guide! It's not that the holidays sneak up on me ( all...hence the Christmas tree on my wall), but sometimes I wait just a bit too long to order people's presents online, and it cuts way too close to Christmas. I think the lateness of Thanksgiving is going to throw off my schedule even more. So even though it might seem like the Halloween decorations just went up, it's time to start thinking about those gifts!

Let's start with one of the most fun categories: the geek gifts. There are a ton of super awesome, quirky things to get the geek in your life - if you've never looked around the internet for a unique Star Trek gift, well, you would be amazed. I'm trying to keep these at a reasonable price point, so none of them exceed $40. Check it out!

1 // Game of Thrones House Pillows via ThinkGeek - These are so neat! And they look pretty cozy, which is important know...winter is coming. ha. hahaha.
2 // Chop Sabers via ThinkGeek - Lightsaber chopsticks?! These are the coolest! Craig and I get sushi take-out all the time, so I snagged him a pair. Good thing he doesn't read this blog ;).
3 // The Hobbit Moleskin Notebooks via ThinkGeek - This is a super classy geeky gift, maybe for a traveler or a writer? It also includes Toilken illustrations inside, which is super cool.

4 // Whooz? iPhone Identification Stickers via the Grommet - This is for a techy family. Each person gets a cute little sticker to identify their iPhone earbuds and charger! Genius! And so adorable.
5 // Star Trek Pint Glasses via Amazon - These are for the beer-loving geek. I love the comic-strip art style on them!
6 // William Shakespeare's Star Wars via Amazon - This is a fun little stocking stuffer - it's a hilarious adaptation of Star Wars in the style of Shakespeare. Perfect for the literary geek in your life.

7 // Mulder and Scully Friendship Rings via Etsy - These are just the cutest things! The other side of the ring has a UFO embossed into it. They're wonderfully subtle. I think these would be adorable for couples or best friends.
8 // Doctor Who Print via Etsy - This is one of my favorite quotes from Doctor Who! I love dictionary prints, as well, and this one is nice and clean. A lovely gift for your favorite space/time explorer/typography enthusiast.
9 // Marvel Bowtie via Etsy - This is a fun and dapper way to spice up a button-down shirt! A good way to help someone feel a little super.

These are a good starting point, but I encourage you to go out and look around to find the perfect gift for your beloved geek! ThinkGeek and Etsy are great places to start - just type in what they like best into the search bar, and be amazed at how much stuff there is out there! If you prefer to go DIY, check out this adorable Lego Star Wars Death Star Ornament that's a mouthful!

Do you have any geeks you're finding great gifts for this year? Let me in on your secrets! I won't tell.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Vegan Cider Waffles With Apple Cranberry Topping

Don't tune me out at the word vegan, y'all. I personally dip my toes in vegan baking pretty frequently, as I am a semi-lactose-intolerant vegetarian who lives with a dyed-in-the-wool vegan. I can say with confidence that this is among the easiest vegan "pastry" recipes ever. There are no flax or chia eggs, no Ener-G egg replacer, only really simple ingredients that you probably already have in your pantry.

But seriously, YUM, guys. These are light and crispy, spicy and aromatic, and they pretty much taste like fall on a plate. The apple cranberry topping is a quick and simple touch that take these to the next level. They don't take that much effort to make, and they will totally make your Saturday morning the best one ever. Trust.

RECIPE (adapted from Art of Dessert)
Makes 3 large waffles

Waffle Ingredients:
1.5 cups + 3 tbsp flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tbsp brown sugar
1/2 tbsp pumpkin pie spice
1/4 tsp salt
1.5 cups almond milk
6 tbsp apple cider
5 tbsp coconut oil (or vegetable oil)
1 tsp vanilla extract

Apple Topping Ingredients:
2 medium apples (I used Gala, but feel free to use whatever you like)
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice
3 tbsp coconut oil (or vegan margarine)
3 tbsp dried cranberries
Dash of maple syrup (optional)

Waffle Instructions:
Preheat waffle iron and spray with non-stick spray
Stir all of the ingredients together in a large bowl until smooth
Pour 1/3 of the batter into the iron
Repeat until you have achieved a warm waffle trifecta

Topping Instructions:
Peel, core, and slice your apples
Preheat coconut oil in your pan
Add spices, sugar, and cranberries, stir until combined
Add apples, saute for about 5-7 minutes or until apples are tender
If using maple syrup, stir it in right at the end and get it out quick to prevent sticking
Pour on top of warm waffles and enjoy a taste of the season!

P.S. the waffle maker we have now is an old one of mine from my parents' house. It's shaped like a princess carriage. So every breakfast is 300% more awesome for this fact. Look on in envy:

Friday, November 15, 2013

HoliDIYs: Quickie Twinkle Light Christmas Tree

Hey guys! It may only be the beginning of November, but I am already ready for Christmas. I let the season go as long as reasonably possible. I may or may not be typing this while I'm wearing a reindeer sweater, is what I'm saying.

I love doing fun DIYs for the holidays, so I thought I'd share them with you this year! This one is very quick and simple, but it adds such a fun pop to a blank wall. Here in my apartment, we most definitely can't have Christmas trees (hello, small 3rd floor walk-up). But when I saw a commercial for Command Hooks, I got inspired to craft one out of a single string of lights! It was much easier than I thought it would be, and it looks so fabulous.

2 packs of clear Command Hooks
1 string of green lights
"Star" (light-up yellow object of your choice)

Forgive me, the picture doesn't do it justice. I think this would be a great trick for a Christmas party, or to add some pizzaz to a space that can't necessarily accommodate a big tree. It couldn't be simpler. All you have to do is align the command hooks sparsely, in 7 rows that are about 5-6 inches apart. I only used 2 command hooks per row, and one per corner bend. Just push them closer together as you get up towards the top. Then string your lights around like a snake, hooking them into place as you go. If you're a perfectionist, you could do more measuring than I did. I promise it'll look fine when you light it up no matter how you do it!

Et voila! Our "star" is a chintzy $2 wreath I found at Ocean State Job Lot. Get creative with it! Anything that lights up is going to look fun. Everyone who has seen it so far was amazed at how such a simple idea can light up a room!

In other news, I didn't have a small enough star for our little Charlie Brown tree, so my roommate cut out a tiny Saul Goodman (of Breaking Bad) to sit on top of it. Our Christmas decorating is a bit nontraditional, to say the least...

But I laugh every time I see it!

How about you? Are you in the spirit yet, or does the Christmas music at the mall infuriate you to no end? Inquiring minds want to know!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Style Files: Tall Girl Problems

Hey guys! I'm here today to address a super serious issue: tall girl problems.

(I'm actually 281m tall. It's hard being a giant. Just kidding, guys. But you should consider yourself lucky that my commitment to this joke extends to me including this really unflattering photo of myself.)

I'm 5'8 and mostly legs. Short girls think they have the monopoly on height-related problems, but I beg to differ. I'm the girl who has to crunch down in group photos, the one who has to be super conscious of how short dresses are, and the one who is always "expecting a flood" because my jeans are not long enough. Why don't they make all jeans for women include an inseam? Men get all the luck.

I'm here because I know that some of my friends out there in the blogosphere have the same problems with finding good clothes as I do. Whenever I meet a fellow tall girl, we always ask each other: "where do you get your _____?" Let's face it, the women's fashion industry doesn't make it easy for girls of any size, so sometimes word of mouth is all we've got. I'm throwing out my fave brands for a few of the trickiest clothes to find in long-leg-friendly sizes: jeans, tights, and dresses.


Everyone knows that Levi's makes good jeans, but when you buy them online (and sometimes at JC Penney), they have different-sized inseams! Awww-right. I like the Demi Curve Skinny Jean the best, but the style is up to you: just know if you get the long inseam, people won't be seeing your socks.
And somewhat counter-intuitively, teen girls' clothing brand Delia*s makes super awesome skinny jeans. You'll probably have to size up, and you might want to order online to avoid being blinded by the bright colors and twee-ness of the store, but with some well-timed coupons and a BOGO deal, you can get 2 pairs of high-waisted skinny jeans for $45! Sweet. I wear these embarrassingly often. You can get longer inseams online, but strangely enough, I find that the plain old Skylar High-Waisted jeans work just fine for me.


I'm all department stores for my tights. Tall girls know the struggle of tights falling down all day because they're about an inch too short for your legs. Simply Vera Wang tights last a long time for me, and they're pretty inexpensive at Kohl's. Most importantly, the legs stretch out to be pretty long! Wahoo. Target's Merona brand comes in size medium/tall, which is a fantastic tight-related innovation. I like Vera Wang for patterned or lace tights, and Merona for brightly colored tights.


I'll preface this by telling you that my favorite dress length is an inch or two above the knee. I have no problem finding super long dresses, nor do I have a problem finding super short dresses, but finding my ideal length with the length of my legs is always dodgy. I have had great luck on (with the ASOS brand specifically) - and if the dress doesn't fit, you can send it back for free. Just make sure you check the size conversion chart - go by your waist size in inches, because their conversions can be a little wonky! As for Francesca's, I find that their lengths tend to be appropriate 75% of the time, which is more than I can say for a lot of companies, and they have a great constantly-rotating selection. I would advise going into the store and trying it on, though - you just never know!

Now, fellow giants, let me know where you get your favorite threads! Swapping tips is the best way to put an end to tall people problems :).

Friday, November 1, 2013

October in Instagrams

Happy post-Halloween, guys! I hope you didn't OD on candy. I can't believe it's November already! I've got my Christmas music curated and ready to go for every annoying T grumpy can you be while listening to Frosty the Snowman, am I right?

This has been a super fun month! Here are some highlights in Instagrams:

1//Some daisy-chained photos above my vanity! 2//Can you believe I kept these pretty mums alive for a month?! 3//The most beautiful sunset above Coolidge Corner. 4//A lovely day in Boston. 5//Halloween greetings from Jesse Pinkman and Walter White (not pictured: Craig had $10,000 and a pack of cards to become "New Hampshire Walt" LOL). 6//Happy tiny pumpkin! 7//My adorable coworkers and I dressed up for Halloween. 8//I met Wes Craven this month!! He signed my Freddy doll. I was geeking out :D.

Now onto Thanksgiving and holiday shopping...Happy November, everyone!