A delightfully spooky time!

My husband and I threw a small Halloween costume dinner party for about 10 friends at our apartment this weekend!  It was so much fun, I only wish our apartment was bigger so we could have had a larger guest list!  I thought I would share our decor for this holiday.  I haven’t ever been a big Halloween-decorator in the past (at all), but this year I really wanted to do it up right, and have some friends over to give me a reason to do so!

For the courtyard, we didn’t have the time to do much, plus there are rumors that it’s going to be re-landscaped soon, so since we don’t know when exactly that is happening, we didn’t want to hang stuff from the trees, just to have the landscapers show up and tear it all down.  So we kept it simple and cut some faces into black paper bags, and lined the walkway with luminaries!  They turned out even cuter than I imagined.  In the stairwell leading up to our apartment, we put some of Martha Stewart’s mouse silhouettes (not pictured) and put candles around and christmas lights behind our pumpkins and gourds.

Derek and I dressed up as Mickey and Minnie Mouse this year, and we are super happy with how our costumes turned out!  My skirt was the first thing I’ve made on my own from a sewing pattern, so I’m pretty proud of how it turned out!  We made the ears, Derek’s bow tie, and I painted my shoes yellow.

Our guests lined up at our banquet table (which took rearranging our entire living room, and disassembling our office area…resulting in our bedroom being an absolute catastrophe!)

Ollie, our handsome mascot, no matter the season.

The following day, I took some more photos of our decorations, as I simply didn’t have time to get all the photos I wanted of the party setup before guests arrived.  The “tree” held favors (tricks and treats) for our guests, in halloween cones.  We draped all of our furniture in white cloth to give it a ghostly effect, and we covered some of our artwork with tin foil and drew in creepy eyes.  The bat garland was from West Elm (I’m obsessed with it), and the black cat portrait is from Heather Mattoon’s series “Cats in Clothes”.  Something that I didn’t get to photograph that I am bummed I missed was my brain-shaped ice for the punch!  Ahh, well, another year.  I also missed out on photographing all of our guests in their costumes, unfortunately.

Derek made the ghost following a craft tutorial from Martha Stewart’s October issue of Living.  She will definitely be re-used in future years, and perhaps she will eventually have a ghost family to hang with.  I re-created our center pieces on our regular dining table (which held the appetizers and beverages during the party), since I didn’t get to adequately capture them during the event.  The “pumpkin” bouquet is from Trader Joe’s.

 

We had so much fun, hopefully we can make this an annual event of sorts!  Happy Halloween!

Beautiful Sister

My beautiful and talented sister was sweet enough to let me photograph her while we were standing around in Maine one day…goodness, she is so beautiful, huh?  She is quite the crafter.  Check out her website:  www.janellegates.com

Poolside Test Shoot

This weekend I got together with a few friends and we pulled together this summertime test shoot by a lovely pool in Long Beach.  Our model was Heather Ann Davis, who is mostly an actress these days, but was gracious enough to lend us her beauty for the afternoon, makeup was by Veronica Chanel, wardrobe styling was by Wade Parkins, and hair styling by Steven Perlin.

My sweet Ollie.

Before we got a kitten, several people told me about how their kitties changed their lives for the better.  I now completely understand what they were saying.  Ollie is the sweetest little thing, and makes my day-to-day life (while Derek is at work) so much more exhilarating.  Such a great little guy.  He is growing up so much though…I just want him to be teensy forever.

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We are starting to make plans for the holidays.  Any suggestions on what we should do with Ollie while we are gone?  We don’t have many friends that will be in town, or who aren’t allergic, and while we could take him with us wherever we go, travelling with cats isn’t exactly the easiest thing ever.  Any suggestions?

A new addition to the family

Last week Derek and I finally got our sweet little kitten. And oh boy is he something! He is 12 weeks old and teensy. Super playful and cuddly and so well behaved. We think he likes our home so far. :) However, we don’t have a name for him yet!! Boy names are so difficult it seems. Sigh. It’ll come to us…


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We have been battling a serious case of jet lag with the little guy since returning from Florida (he's never been effected before -- HELP!)...so he woke up at 4:30 this morning, and to combat a too-early nap, we took him to the splash pad for the first time. He L O V E D it! This week, Wilder and I went to Florida to meet my new nephew Walker, and to just spend some needed quality time with family. Wilder and Jude bonded, and Wilder fell in love with "baby Walker". 😍 I got to spend time with my momma and sister, and we really just got to enjoy our time together. These are such special and cherished times we get together. Until next time, Florida, we will miss you! #wildercobalt #walkerellisreid #judeemerson My crabby, sicky little Valentine! Not having it when I asked him to pose with a balloon at my/our favorite place...usually he'd be happy to oblige. But not today. 💌🎈☹️ #wildercobalt #2yearsold Sometimes I can't believe that I get to have Wilder as my son. He is such a smart, sassy, FUNny, expressive little boy, even at such a young age. He's got his opinions and isn't afraid to tell them to you! Mom life is so so hard...but so so wonderful and worth it! 💛 #wildercobalt #2yearsold #iamfun
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(The sticker is such a good one from @shopbando!) We took Wilder to the Natural History Museum today to see all the dinosaurs! I took almost 0 photos, but he sure loved looking at everything! #wildercobalt One more, because this is *SO* his personality. Hair a mess, giggling, squirming all over......and that belly! 😍 Thankful x infinity to be this boy's momma. He makes life so fun and SO full of joy. #wildercobalt #2yearsold #wilderturns2 (PS: I did NOT make this cake! The kind and amazingly talented woman who watches Wilder during the did it for us!!! Such a blessing...a delicious blessing!) Today we had a party for my little man - animal style! (More posted in my IG story!) #wildercobalt #2yearsold Today I took my 2 YEAR OLD to @disneyland for his birthday! We had the best time ever, starting the day with some friends, and ending the day just the two of us. He met "Red" from Cars, Olaf, Mickey, Minnie & Donald Duck. We rode tons of rides, ate a special ice cream with Mickey-shaped confetti candies on it, saw a show with some of his faves in it, and laughed a whole lot. These first two years of life as this kid's mom has been insane and incredible. But if the awesomeness from these last 2 years is any indication, I'm pretty sure this next one will be even better. I've been a mom to this sweetheart for 2 years, and I couldn't be happier. #wildercobalt #2yearsold #disneyland 2 years ago almost to the minute, I felt my very first contractions. Not knowing that I was in labor, as it was 5 weeks before my due date, I didn't know what to expect, nor did I feel quite ready for what I was about to do. But with my wonderful husband by my side, and the best team of birthing professionals around me, I began the journey of labor and delivery, to bring my precious and perfect little Wilder into the world. Tonight as I rocked my big boy before bed, and listened to him tell me what songs I should sing, and that he was going to go to sleep with "no crying" (yeah right), I couldn't help but remember the first moments of this momma life that I now find myself in, and am so thankful for. It wasn't even marginally easy, but I wouldn't change a thing (for the most part). Happy almost birthday to my sweet Wilder, and happy almost birth-day to me! THANK YOU to my loved ones who helped it happen. ❤️ 📷: @jadebrookbank I love this pretty little corner of Flowerboy. 🌷✨🌾