Santa! I know him!

First off, thank you all for your kind words about my puppy, Lucy. She was 17 when she passed, so she lived a long life and we have so many good memories of her. I really appreciate all your sweet words.

On a happier note, can you believe Christmas Eve is tomorrow?! I love Christmas. I’m pretty much done wrapping (just need two tiny gifts I ordered my mom to arrive and then I’ll be DONE) and the apartment is all decorated.

I realized I never showed you pictures of my kitchen decorated, besides my cookie cutter craft. How rude of me!

Inspired by Pinterest, I put ribbon on my kitchen cabinets and hung our Christmas cards from it. I love how it looks. It’s fun to be able to see all the cards nicely on display.

The other side of the kitchen is our table, which in this picture is all decked out with alcohol for our party. Usually doesn’t so predominately display our love of wine and spirits…

You’ve seen our decorated living room before, but I figured I’d send you a little reminder.

I have to say, I love having the apartment decorated for Christmas! It’s so homey and warm in here. Why can’t we decorate like this all year long?

Hope you all have a WONDERFUL Christmas! I will chat with you all on Monday. xoxo

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She really is a funny girl…

When I decided to finally start this blog, I read a lot of “blogging tips.” The most common? Write what you are passionate about.
 
I’ve noticed my blog posts over the last few months have primarily focused on getting my bearings as a newlywed. Making our apartment a home, learning to cook, and even some emotional high’s and low’s. Those things are 100% me.
 
But those things aren’t EVERYTHING I’m passionate about. If you asked any of my friends or family what I could talk all day about, I think the top answer would…reading (or books). 
 
I’m a HUGE book-worm. I constantly say that I don’t just read books, I devour them.  So I’m going to start talking about what I’m reading here, on my blog.
 
Blame it on Disney’s Beauty & the Beast, but I’ve always identified with dreamer Belle and her “nose stuck in a book.” I dream of a house with a library like the one she had in the castle, or one maybe slightly less grand, but still magnificent, like these:

via Houzz

via Pinterest

via Diary of a Renovation

via Jean-Loup Daraux

 

Don’t worry, this isn’t going to become a book blog. But I figured the blog’s called Lewis in Love, so I should post more about the things I really do love, right?

So stay tuned for some fine-tuning around here,  hopefully resulting in a new “What’s on our Shelf?” page.

Because what’s more homey than snuggling up on your couch, in your [perfectly designed, DIY, and blogged about] living room? I can’t think of much.

Fa La La La…our Christmas tree!

Well, ho ho ho, our tree is up!

There are few things that my husband puts his “foot down” about. Getting a real Christmas tree was one of them. He grew up with a real tree, as did I, but in the last 5 or so years, my parents switched over to an artificial tree. John was adamant that we have a real one, no if’s and’s or but’s about it.

So we got ourself a 6-foot Frasier tree, and finally got her up and decorated in the apartment.

It’s funny what you learn with your first Christmas tree. Like the fact 400 lights means diddly squat to a tree that’s lush and full. Whoops. Next year we will be buying more.

Another thing we learned is while it seemed like we had a ton of ornaments, our tree literally ate them up. We have so many empty spots just YEARNING for an ornament. John thinks I’m overreacting, since this is our first tree and the whole point is that we have a lifetime together to obtain ornaments that actually mean something to us. And well, I know he’s right…but still.

Being that we are newlyweds, a lot of our ornaments have a marriage or love theme. Lots of heart-shapes, like these love birds…

And whimsical bridal froggies…

My mother bought us this Lenox 2011 bride and groom. Probably the classiest ornament we have on the tree, and it’s definitely a keepsake…

Stemming from a tradition my family keeps, we bought an ornament from our honeymoon in Hawaii. Our plan is to buy an ornament from every vacation or journey we take, so every year our Christmas tree is like a little time capsule. What I love about my parents tree is you can walk up to it, see the 1993 Disney ornament and immediately have a conversation starter. I want that for my family.

Overall, it’s not a bad start us new newlyweds. It’s fun to snuggle on the couch and look at our first-ever Christmas tree. I don’t know about you, but I find something so magical about Christmas.

Psst…did you notice that we bought the Target tree topper I talked about a couple weeks ago? It came in gold and silver, and we snagged the silver option. It’s so pretty with the lights both on and off!

Christmas Party Plans

Man oh man, we have been busy! Our tree is up, Christmas cards out, stockings are hung and the Christmas party planning in full swing!

I promise to share pictures of our holiday decor later in the week, but for now wanted to focus on the task at hand: our first Christmas party. Being that Christmas is both John and mine’s favorite holiday, we decided to start a tradition of hosting a Christmas party the Saturday before the big day. Since we are still in an apartment, our party will start small, but we have big plans of making this a big friends and family party in later years.

So the question I keep asking myself is, what makes a good Christmas party?

There are the obvious :

Music

  • No Christmas party is legit without Mariah Carey’s “All I Want For Christmas” blasting throughout the space. Right?

Festive decorations

  • The tree must be up, as well as any other decorations you choose to have. John vetoed the human-sized reindeer that I fell in love with from HomeGoods, so our party will be missing that (unfortunately), but we do have some other fun things up and around the apartment. We even have some presents wrapped under the tree!

Food

  • Now this is the big one. Our menu isn’t set, but I’ve already started making a list of good hors d’oeuvres to place around the apartment. We won’t be serving a meal per say, but I plan on having a ton of finger foods for people to snack on.

So what are my other Christmas party must-have’s?

Mistletoe

  • What would a Christmas party be without some awkward forced kissing situations? Unfortunately for me, I’m having a VERY difficult time finding some mistletoe. I’ve gone to a few places and they have all been out of smooch-inducing plant. I don’t want fake mistletoe, so I’ve held off purchasing any. I’m not giving up, though. I will locate some before Saturday!

Eggnog

  • Ahh, good ol’ eggnog. I don’t really know anyone who actually drinks it (besides my dad) but it WILL be at the party. Maybe I’ll even try it this year and like it. Maybe.

Champagne

  • Call me crazy, but I don’t think any celebration is set without some bubbles. In fact, one of my favorite Christmas drinks is a Mistletoe; champagne with a spash of cranberry juice. Yum!

 

Because no blog post is ever really finished without some photos, I wanted to share some living rooms decked out for Christmas that are totally inspiring:

 

via Better Homes & Gardens

 The ceiling in this space is just divine. Yes, I know that has absolutely nothing to do with Christmas, but it absolutely adds to the rustic Christmas vibe this living room has going on. I even love the mini Charlie Brown tree on the mantle!

via Country Living

The lime green in this space knocks my socks off. Admittedly, I’d probably never decorate with this color. Not because I don’t like it, but because when I think “Christmas” I think red and dark green. But wow, this color really works and is just a little bit unexpected!

via Pottery Barn
 
What doesn’t Pottery Barn do right? This space just screams Christmas cozy. I want nothing more than to be laying on the couch, under that blanket, in front of the fire. A girl can dream, right?
 
via Pinterest
I had to include this room because it’s so FUN! I can’t help but think sometimes people decorate too seriously for Christmas, with no color or well…Christmas spirit. Well, THIS Christmas room is the epitome of fun and festive. I love how whimsical it is.  You KNOW this family is having a jolly Christmas!
 

Do you have any suggestions on how to make a Christmas party great? Would love to know your suggestions! Have a great Monday, all!

 

Top of the Tree, to ya!

Today is my last Thankful November post! First, I want to thank Paisley Print Shoes for coming up with such a great idea on how to keep the “Thanks” in Thanksgiving the month of November. You guys really rock.

Next, I want to say again how thankful I am for this blog, and for all the people who take the time to read it every day. It means a lot to me that you guys are supporting me as I try out something “new.” I look forward to learning more about life and blogging, and sharing it with you every step of the way.

***

While I am on my Christmas decorating kick, I should share that we don’t have a tree yet…or a tree topper.

John and I already decided we want a star. No angel, Santa or otherwise for us. We’re keeping it old school.

This Pottery Barn star makes me swoon. I carried it around the store with me for a good 15 minutes, before I came to the realization it’s about 2 ft tall and about the size of the actual tree we are going to be able to fit into our apartment. Gorgeous, but not for us.

via Pottery Barn

 

So that means it’s time to do some online browsing. Shall we discuss some stars we like (and one we luuuuuurve)?

 

I like this gem-inspired star from Pier 1. All the curly swirls make it a bit more whimsical than other blinged-out toppers I’ve seen.

via Pier 1

 
John would never go for this one, but there’s something totally unique about this sunburst mirror topper. Very different from other toppers out there. Perhaps a bit TOO modern for my traditional holiday style, but I’m sure that there are people out there that would love this on top of their tree.  

via Ballard Designs

 
This star from Neiman Marcus is like the Bentley of tree topper stars. How gorgeous is this thing? Unfortunately the price tag is a bit too much like a Bentley for my taste…

via Neiman Marcus

 
Another jewel-inspired star. This one really brings the bling.
 

via HSN

 
 To switch it up, I found a picture of the Christmas star I grew up with. It was the best thing ever.

via Ebay

 
Want to know why it was the best thing ever? Disco ball and holiday fun all rolled into one. It literally had a disco ball in it, that made the top of the tree a glowing dance party. The Lewis Family keeps it real, yo. Just see this bad boy in action…
via Ebay
*Sidenote, you better believe I would buy this retro/used version if John allowed it.
 
I know you are all running to Ebay right now to snatch that bad boy up.
 
Anyway, shall we get to our mutual favorite?  
 
We both fell in love with this Capiz star from Target. Or shall I say Tar-jay, since this beauty is so gorgeous.

via Target

Seriously, I need it. It’s apparently in “limited stock” at my local Target and it’s not available online, so I’m not going to get my hopes up, but I think I need it. I’ll keep you all posted.

 

What do you all have on top of your tree? Star, Santa, Angel or other? I’ve seen some great trees out there with ribbon bows on top that seem super cute. We’re doing a real tree this year so we probably won’t have it up for another week or so. I’m dying to get it and put our ornaments up! Can’t wait to share pictures with you all once it’s all decorated.

Have a great Wednesday!

So Not Cookie Cutter

Today I am thankful for Christmas music. Christmas music is a SERIOUS mood booster for me. The second one of my favorites comes on I’m smiling and singing along like I have no cares in the world. Man, I love me some Christmas spirit.

***

Attention everyone! I was crafty again!

Yes, I am just as shocked as you are. And this craft wasn’t even inspired by Pinterest. It was from my own head. CRAZINESS.

I went to Michael’s on Black Friday and they were having awesome sales. I ended up buying two packages of snowflake cookie cutters and some heavy sparkle cardstock. I obviously couldn’t buy just plain cardstock. It had to have red, green and gold sparkles all over it. This is very important to the story.

Anyway, I decided to trace the cardstock to the shape of the snowflakes and then used my exact-o knife to cut out the shape. I tried using a scissor, but it didn’t cut as nicely as I wanted.

The next step was realizing I got sparkles EVERYWHERE. All over me, the couch, the kitchen, the living room, John…everything. Not sure how I would have avoided this, but it happened.

After all the shapes were cut out and I took a break to watch Homeland (any of you watching that?? It’s SO good!), I hot glued the cardstock to the back of the cookie cutters.

Then I put some ribbon on these bad boys. I hot glued them starting from the middle of the cardstock, to the top center of the cookie cutter. Gluing the ribbon to the top of the cutter evenly distributed the weight of the cookie cutters so they hung correctly. Otherwise they kind of pulled forward, so you’d see more of the top/back of the cutter then you really want. 

 Then I hung my new beauties in front of my kitchen window.

Get it? Cookie cutters…in the kitchen…

Man I’m good.

So what do you think?? I’m pretty proud of myself and I think they look adorable in our kitchen. Success!

Cheers to Freakin’ Weekend

It’s Friday, people! Can I hear a hallelujah?!

In the spirit of the weekend, I decided to dedicate today’s post to one of my favorite things — wine.

Red wine, white wine, sparkling wine…I love it all. In fact, I may go so far as to say that I am thankful for wine. I love that you can have a romantic night over a bottle of wine, or spend the day chatting and gossiping over bottle(s) with your close friends. Living on Long Island, I am lucky enough to have quite a few vineyards nearby. It’s so fun to spend the day tasting different wines, comparing them, and feeling like a true wine connoisseur.

I also love wine-themed items as decor. My kitchen has a growing wine theme, with wall art and a cork table centerpiece, and our living room features a pretty extensive wine wall. To me, wine serves many purposes!

Check out these amazing pieces that bring the vineyard right into your home…

One day I will have this wine barrel coffee table. It’s classic yet absolutely a statement piece.

via Wine Enthusiast

Or maybe a wine barrel table with a glass top, to keep things a little softer looking.

via Pinterest

I love the simplicity of this wine barrel chandelier. Gorgeous!

via Restoration Hardware

This wine bottle chandelier is a little more flashy, but still completely classy. Can we expect anything less from Pottery Barn?

via Pottery Barn

Check out this amazing DIY cork artwork. I could only dream of doing something so cool.

via The Viv-Spot Blog

I’d so love to have a wine crate ottoman like this. Functionality and style.

via Pinterest

Or how fun would this little wine crate storage on wheels be holding all your favorite magazines?

via Image, etc.

The most difficult part about having wine-related items in your home is being careful not to go too far. I’m personally not a fan of plastic grapes, or other items of that nature. As with any “theme” it’s easy to go overboard, so you need to watch yourself from falling into the “cheesy” category.

Now excuse me, I need to get through this day so I can go home and open a bottle!

Have a lovely weekend, everyone!

Holiday Madness

I am so thankful for my mom. She’s my best friend, plain and simple. We talk every day and never run out of things to say or do together. She’s my favorite shopping partner, life coach and cooking teacher. Overall, she’s the best role model a girl could ask for. I hope that one day I’m half the mom she is.

***

Can you believe Thanksgiving is only nine days away? And Christmas is next month?

I adore Christmas. It’s my favorite holiday, and I am so beyond excited to start crafting and decorating to the tunes of “A Chipmunk Christmas.”  I’ve already started making notes on what I want to do this year, and even bought this bad boy to help spark my creativity.

If you’re wondering, it’s a pretty good magazine. Nothing so original that’s probably not already on Pinterest, but it’s still a fun read.

Anyway, I noticed that I have kind of skipped over Thanksgiving as far as decorating. Yea, I have my mini-pumpkin on the coffee table, but that’s about it. Since we aren’t hosting Thanksgiving whatsoever, the thought never crossed my mind to spruce up the apartment.

However, we ARE having friends over the night before Thanksgiving for a little pre-bar hopping cocktail party. It’s technically for my birthday, but it’s really just a “Thanksgiving Eve is the biggest bar night of the year so let’s get a few pre-cocktail party cocktails in us before we head to the bars” party.

Phew, that was a mouthful.

So I think I might need to jazz up the apartment a little. Not sure what to do though, since I don’t have much energy time for this. But, there’s so much eye candy out there…how can I not be inspired?

via SAS Interiors

via Frenchie and Flea

via Star Shine Chic

via Old Sweet Water Cottage

Being that Thanksgiving is almost over and it’s literally JUST about time to decorate for Christmas, I’m going to see if  good ol’ nature can inspire my decorating this weekend (cough cough…free stuff).

I’ll keep you posted!

Beyond Thankful Friday

Today is Veteran’s Day. A day to honor the sacrifices, courage and patriotism of our service members, past and present.  The selflessness of these men and women are beyond measurable, their unwavering dedication knows no match. I am honored to live in a country that so many people are willing to dedicate their life towards.

To these veteran’s: you are an inspiration, thank you.

Today is also a time to acknowledge military families, especially those who have loved ones serving overseas. With the holiday’s just around the corner, I understand what you are going through must be so difficult. I pray for you and for your loved ones, that you will be reunited soon.

I am the daughter of a USMC Vietnam veteran, married to the son of an Army Vietnam veteran. My brother is a captain in the Navy, who was one of the first people deployed after 9/11. Patriotism runs deep through my veins, to the core of my soul. I am so proud to be an American.

Thank you, thank you, thank you to all the Veteran’s out there. It is because of your sacrifices I am able to live the life I have, and enjoy even the littlest of freedoms. I am so thankful for you, and you will continue to be in my prayers as always.

Hold the Ketchup

I am so thankful for my job. I don’t say that enough. Yes, there are times when I’d rather be home, sleeping in, not commuting, and doing absolutely nothing on the couch. But at the end of the day, I’m so thankful to have this career, to work with talented people and to be challenged every single day. With the economy being the way it is, I could easily be unemployed right now. I am thankful to have the luxury of a steady job and paycheck.

Okay, now back to my original post at hand. No, this isn’t about a recipe. It’s all about mustard yellow. Yea, the color.

I’ve been drooling over it lately. The accent pieces, the splash of color. I literally want it all over my living room. It’s exactly the spice I think we need to brighten up our space and give it just the little bit of pzazz it’s missing.

Like how gorgeous is this bedroom? The headboard, the pillows…swoon! Ruffle pillows are my favorite, so I’ve been keeping a sharp eye out for something similar for our couches.

via House*Tweaking

Since we have all of the furniture pieces that my tiny apartment can allow for, I am going to have to rely on accent pieces. I’m envisioning pillows and a few awesome vases or trinkets like the ones below from Crate & Barrel. Only issue I’m facing is the fact I have zero shelving (besides my bookcase, and well, my books have taken over). Something I might need to fix asap…

via Crate & Barrel

I love how artwork and pillows give this room just the pop it needs against the gray. It ties together the entire room so it looks perfectly in sync. A future artwork DIY may need to be in my near future.

via Houzz

Lastly, how amazinggggg is this gold/yellow light fixture in this living room? What an awesome retro statement piece. Of course, to have something like this would mean your rooms have overhead lighting (which my apartment does not) so, something like this will have to wait until we buy a house. But a girl can dream.

via Decor Pad

How do you all feel about mustard yellow? It’s certainly trendy right now, but it’s not necessarily a color that everyone loves. Do you have any suggestions for me on how to brighten up our living room with this color? I tend to shy away from color…so I could definitely use your help!