Impromptu Photo Booth...


^^^the lugo family^^^
^^^little k^^^
^^^sissy love^^^
^^^my faves!^^^
^^^the beales^^^

Greetings from Miami! Sorry for the unexpected silence around these parts, it seems like life after Thanksgiving just sped on by! Between work, xmas gift shopping, buying our first big tree, baking non stop, packing, flying, celebrating, eating, drinking (hello mulled wine!), and just simply napping it out, I may have forgotten about this little space just a tad bit. But I have to admit, it has felt really great to put all technology (ok not all, I've still been instagraming) on hold for a while and really soak in all the festivities. I just thought I'd pop in to share a few photos from an impromptu photobooth that I had the brilliant idea of installing at this years noche buena, aka xmas eve. Of course none of this would have possible without the help of hubs (the camera guy), my dad (the light guy), and little k (our first test subject)... so thank you guys!!! And also thank you all you lovely readers for letting me share a little piece of what has made this a truly special xmas. Hope you and your loved ones had as merry of a time as I did. Be back soon with some more holiday posts. But until then, you can probably find me curled up in a blanket with a warm glass of homemade mulled wine.

***Today I am thankful for the creative minds that helped make this photobooth a success... it's also those same minds that put up with my genius ideas***




1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5

So I have an addiction you see... of the lip kind. And sometimes, it can be pretty bad! Me and my chapstick, lip gloss, lip balm, whatever you want to call it are like a baby and his pacifier. I have about five stashed away in hidden spots at any given time. Some so hidden that sometimes I forget about them and it's not until I randomly find them again that I realize I didn't actually need another three. Not that I ever regret buying new ones because one can never have too many really. When I do find those long lost ones, man oh my it's like finding forgotten cash in your pockets! I am dead serious here guys. I try to have one in my purse at all times, but you know switching around purses can get tricky sometimes and it does happen that I end up without one from time to time. As soon as I realize though, I will be licking my lips non stop and itching for the next CVS to buy a replacement pronto... it's that bad. Of course winter time is no help and so I thought I'd share with you all a few of my favorites at the moment. Some are a little pricier and I save for special occasions (yes chapsticks for special occasions, I said it) while others are more affordable and my day to day staple. Oh and hubs just discovered the other day that I sleep with a chapstick under my pillow... I mean it's like he doesn't even know me! 

1 / Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment in Rose: Definitely one of my favorites and has quickly become my go to when I want to add a little color to my lips without the fuss or commitment of regular lipsticks. It doesn't feel greasy or sticky and you can layer to up the hint of color. A bit of a splurge but once you've tried it, you'll understand why... feels like butter!

2 / EOS Organic Lip Balm Sphere in Strawberry Sorbet: These kind of remind me of little macaroons in their pastel colors and round shapes. The good news, these taste as yummy as they smell so that's a plus if you're a lip licker like me! Very easy to apply but I did find myself needing to re-apply more often than I'd like.  

3 / Nivea Lip Butter in Vanilla & Macadamia Kiss: Can we say yum! It takes will power not to lick this one straight out of the tin... but unfortunately it doesn't taste like anything. It goes on light but hydrates plenty and lasts for hours. I like how smooth my lips feel when I've used this one and hubs has ranked it as kissable.

4 / Burt's Bees Lip Balm in Pomegranate Oil: Made with all natural ingredients which is a plus for anyone with sensitive lips. This one glides on easily and smells lovely. I like that it doesn't feel waxy like some other chap sticks do and actually lasts pretty well. I'd say its pretty good value!

5 / Vaseline Lip Therapy in Cocoa Butter: I have to admit, what sold me instantly on this one is the cute little tub! It's the perfect size to toss in your purse or keep under your pillow (yes, I do that!). This balm is thick and smooth but not in a greasy way. It has a nutty smell that I love and leaves your lips feeling kissable instantly!

***Today I am thankful for cherry chapstick... and all the other lip balms out there!***


My Surfer Dude...


 ^^^seriously, how cute is he?!^^^
^^^all the birds tried to get me!^^^
 ^^^bad ass surfer chick^^^
 ^^^one of the birds^^^
 ^^^he's up!^^^
^^^so proud!^^^

Over the long Thanksgiving weekend, I finally woke up early enough to join hubs down at the beach while he surfed. I have to admit, he had to sell it to me pretty hard seeing as I'm not a morning person, it had been a pretty cold weekend, and I don't surf. But I hadn't been out to see him since we first moved here you see... and he had gotten so much better... and I could play around with the new camera and take pictures of him so... While those were all pretty good reasons, it was his determination (what I really mean is relentlessness) that did me in. He was proud and wanted to show me, wanted me to be proud too. I'm not going to lie and say I wasn't grumpy that morning, because I was. Nor was I looking forward to the three mile cycle down to the beach before my morning coffee or any food. And the unexpected obstacle course with fellow garbage men and their trucks through me for a loop because they were the only ones up and taking over the back alleys. But once we got there... once I sat on my slightly damp towel and took it all in... my soul was just refreshed and none of that previous stuff mattered anymore. My grumpiness and morning frown were washed away we the sea air and it felt good to be up that early. The beach was at it's quietest and there were so few people out (mainly surfers) that the beach felt like it was my own personal haven. Of course I did slip out to the seediest of bars to order what turned out to be the best egg and cheese sandwich ever! And to my surprise, there were people in the bar and yes, they were drinking that early. I had one of those moments where I was really, really thankful... for the salt air filling my lungs, the feeling of sand between my toes, the delicious coffee slowly making its way through my body and warming me while also awakening me at the same time. I felt like I was seeing everything for the first time and man on man was the sight just breathtaking! The tide was low and had created this mirror like turf on the sand that reflected such rich shades of blue, making it impossible to tell where the sky ended or the sea began or which way was up or which way was down.

I was mesmerized and then I saw him, standing proud with his surfboard in tow and I had to hold back tears of pride (I have been all over the emotional spectrum lately) because I knew, the real reason I was down there on a chilly early morning could be none other than for him. And it was because of him that I was exposed to all this beauty and finally opening my eyes to where we had been calling home for over eight months (EIGHT MONTHS!) and counting. Oh and hubs did look like a surfer alright, with sun kissed locks and squinty blue eyes... he definitely looked at home in his wet suit, paddling out to conquer the waves. This boy, now man of mine... see the thing is he absolutely hates waking up... at any hour. And yea sure, I kind of laughed when he claimed he would be waking up extra early on the weekends and even before work to be able to surf once we relocated. While I didn't doubt he would to begin with, I doubted it would last. If there is anything hubs loves more than me, that would be sleep. But believe it or not, surfing can sometimes trump sleep for him which is out of this world big! He says it brings him a sense of clarity and focus like nothing else. It wakes him up, but like really wakes him up. It's what has helped make LA feel more like home for him and I just realized in typing all this, surfing in LA does what running in London did for me so I get it. It makes him feel connected to something bigger than himself, bigger than us. Maybe one day I'll be brave enough to face the ocean with him (I need to learn to swim first and that's a whole different story!) but for now I'll just sit and marvel from the shore, doing what I do best with a camera in hand and a different perspective to see life with. Who knows, I may even fall back into love with running and let it help ground me again.

-Cannon EOS &D, Canon EF28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM Standard Zoom Lens, Photoshop

***Today I am thankful for my brave hubs, he really does inspire every single day***


When Up Is Down...


*click through to the blog to view actual clip...

Now I know we are well into December folks... and I also know that most people have replaced thoughts of pumpkin and turkey with candy canes and xmas trees... but bare with me as I recap life that happened way too quickly for my liking! You see after the frenzy that was my non stop baking for the pumpkin series, everything just kind of blurred together. There was eating... A LOT of eating. There was sleeping in and being unreasonably lazy... except that with all the eating it was pretty reasonable. And there was enjoying quality time with friends where the unexpected happened pretty often... like shooting vegetables out of homemade guns and spur of the moment backyard concerts. Gotta love the holidays hu?! This little video is just a clip of a song and some random events that took place on our Thanksgiving. I am terrible and forgot to get the name of these lovely ladies but will try to fix that! To be honest, I don't really remember it that well... like a foggy dream through the turkey induced coma because we, ladies and gentlemen had not one, not two, but THREE different kinds of turkey at our potluck Thanksgiving/Birthday. You see it was a pair of twin's (new friends) birthday that just happened to land on the grand day of feasting and so we celebrated both... big! The food was magnificent and can I just say I finally found brussels sprouts worth eating! Oh and a little side note, I kept going on and on all week about pot luck this and pot luck that and hubs finally turned to me asked in a most solemn of ways- "what's a potluck?" There aren't that many surprises after being together for over eight years... but then every once in a while, hubs will say something like this and remind me all over again that he's British. This year I was very thankful for new friends that took us in as we are the orphans over here in LA. I was also very thankful for skype which allowed me to see my family on the East coast and with only three hours time difference as opposed to our previous eight! And of course I am thankful for hubs and the new traditions we are starting together as a family like pumpkin pancakes on morning of because they just rock. I feel like such a lucky lady as I know I have much to be thankful for. I hope to remember this year round and not just when turkeys are around.

***Today I am thankful for the 3 delicious types of turkey that all made there way into my belly... a little late but still worth mentioning!***

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