where I've been

I'm sorry it's been so quiet around here; there are lots of reasons, not the least of which is that sitting at my computer means that I freeze to death (nearly). But the big thing is: we're *this* close to buying a house of our veryvery own. You don't know how exciting this is to me, even though the one we're looking at is a major fixer-upper--it will be our house. Also, it's on 3.3 acres of land, and is a complete steal.
So that's what I'm obsessing about right now, and I really cannot think about anything else. Keep your fingers crossed as we try to figure out the financing!

(side note: the picture is of oatmeal raisin cinnamon chip cookies I made today. They're good.)

currently inspiring me

These two images are from the March issue of Country Living.

She "papered" her wall with scarves! You know, the kind you pick up at the thrift store for fifty cents?

Isn't this a great way to "web" a chair seat? (Please excuse the distortion; the page was sticking up.)

These two are from a book I picked up about Christian Dior. I haven't read it yet; I'm just drooling over the pictures, and these are my two favorites.

So what is currently inspiring you?


wicked awesome shoes under $30

If you're a boot junkie, as I am, now is the time to stock up. These are all form Urban Outfitters; click on the pictures for more information.


I really have awful taste in books

I'm a huge fan of Jane Austen, but I also read more chicklit than is good for my brain. Oh, and I discovered the awesonemess that is Agatha Christie last year, so I've been tearing through every one I can find. (I want to BE Miss Marple. But Poirot can take his mustaches and go somewhere else.) It's embarassing. But I'm not THAT embarassed about it, or I wouldn't have added the nifty little widget on the righthand side where you can see what I'm currently reading. So if you're on GoodReads, add me as a friend. Maybe some of your literacy will rub off on me. If you're not, join. Hopefully having everyone know how mindless I am will convince me to read more thoughful things. Maybe.

the find of the month, if not the year

At least for me.

Found these pants yesterday, at Marshall's, for $21. New. With the button tag. I have no idea how to tell if they're knockoffs or not, but I really don't care, because they're an amazing piece of fabric (loden-green wool in a herringbone weave) and they fit my husband gorgeously.
I am the bargain QUEEN. For now.


I still like red and pink

I am a valentine.

This is what I wore to my hairdresser's yesterday afternoon--it's what was on top of the pile, I swear!
pink cashmere sweater: thrifted
white tux shirt: thrifted
red kini: old navy ($5!)
red tights: delias
pink rain boots: gift from stepmum

the dog's name is Decaf, and she is the newest member of our family. I'm still getting used to her.

wednesday wonderfulness

And that's all for now--my fingers are cold from typing, and I really need to get some work done.


actually worth going to the mall. Maybe.

You have to understand that I HATE going to the mall. To me, it serves as a monument to sameness and overpriced conformity. However. Once in a while I drag myself in, usually because I need shoes (we have NO GOOD SHOES STORES in our town) or MAC makeup. So I was there this weekend and poked around and tried things on, and found two (!!!!) things that I like.

These jeans are from Express, and are high-waisted, perfectly faded, and generally look pretty close to vintage. Sadly, I can't wear them, because I have such a huge bum that you could drop a baseball in between my back and the waistband. Nonetheless, I love them.

Giraffe print pumps. Lovely, no? A nice switch from the nearly ubitiqous leopard print, and less tarty than zebra. These are Nine West, and while they're sold out of this print on their site, I did find it on amazon.

thirfted goodness

When we were out in Ohio for a family birthday last weekend, the girls had one request: they wanted to go thrifting. So off we went, and I managed to restrain myself for the most part. However, this coat was perfect: vintage, lovely shape, good condition, and sealskin collar and cuffs. But the best part was the price: $8. Considering that my current black coat is nearly worn to shreds, there was no way I could NOT get it.
thrifted goodness

In this shot you can see a little more detail on the collar and buttons (they're crocheted!) but we took it because we were both wearing our "breakfast at Tiffany's" coats. That's what L calls hers, and she's wearing one at 14. All I can say is: she'll have an AMAZING vintage wardrobe by the time she's my age.
princess coats


I am the eggman, I am the walrus

I am the eggman...I am the walrus

This outfit was designed around the socks; chix0rgirl sent them to me, so I had to wear them. My favorite bit is the part you can't see; I have a ladybug pin pulling my cardi tight in the back. Pretty awesome. I did not carry around the umbrella all day; that was added for the photo.
blue vintage cardi: thrifted, years ago. It's my favorite sweater.
yellow tunic-y sweater: department store clearance
denim mini: borrowed from sister
yellow tights: delia's
scrunch socks: gift from friend
converse: gift from husband
necklaces: flea market
yellow ring: gift from sister
orange umbrella: ebay


happy valentines day!

It's that day again, and I haven't posted all week, and I'm sorry. So here's what I've been thinking about instead of posting:
- Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip. I know it only ran one season, but I love it. We watched the whole season over the past week and a half or so. Amanda Peet is so gorgeous, isn't she? I'm glad she's finally gotten to move beyond the "slutty girlfriend" roles.
- Agatha Christie. I'm addicted! Seriously!
- eating healthy. Current favorite meal: 1/2 cup brown rice, 1 diced hardboiled egg, 2 cups of steamed red cabbage and onions, and balsamic vinegar drizzled on top for flavor. Sounds weird, but is utterly delicious and satisfying. I'm supposed to be doing the Body For Life Challenge, but so far I'm managing the cardio and the diet, and haven't done any weights. But since my main motivation here is health (looking awesome this summer is just a nice side effect) I'm not going to stress about it. Running three times a week, eating no white sugar or white flour, and sticking to 1200 calories a day is huge for me. Besides, my pants are a teeny bit baggier.
- www.fitday.com Seriously? I didn't know how bad peanut butter was until I plugged it into this thing. Try it: it's addictive.
- having a dog. We brought back my in-law's chocolate lab with us when we came back from Ohio this weekend. Her name is Decaf, she's very energetic, and she goes running with me. It's awesome.
- buying a house. We are trying reallyreallyreally hard to get together the funding and find the perfect house, and I'm sort of obsessing over that.

Sorry I had no Wednesday Wonderfulness, or anything really, this week. I've spent very little time online, and the time I HAVE had has been work-related. So there you go. Hope you all have a lovely holiday! We aren't celebrating tonight; le husband worked 14 hours today. We're doing something tomorrow night instead, and it will be simple and inexpensive. (See, "buy a house," above.)

Oh, here's a happy, loving picture for you, taken last week:

blowing kisses


dress I love

On Sunday I wasted a ridiculous amount of time watching all of Kitchen Confidential and I decided that this dress is simply perfect. Doesn't it look like something Sophia Loren would have worn? It's gloriously seductive without sliding over into skanky. Love.

the brilliant shoes

So Mohop Shoes has the single greatest shoe idea ever: convertable shoes. See those ribbons? Apparently every pair comes with five different colors, and you can thread them however you want for an endless variety of options. It's a wood sole, too, and I love real wood wedges; they're unbelievably comfy. The only sticking point is the price; at around $300 a pair, they had BETTER fill in for several different pairs of shoes!


the latest tasty addiction and cheap thrill

So here's the deal: we eat a LOT of salsa in this house. As in, it takes us about a week to go through one of those giant size jugs. And although it's healthy, it also gets expensive pretty quickly. Well, the other night we were at a friend's house and she had a MASSIVE bowl of homemade salsa, which reminded me that in times past I have made my own. So I dusted off the recipe that has been hanging about in the back of my brain and away we went!

Ingredients: salt, pepper, onions (one or two), garlic (a few cloves), lime (two), cilantro (one bunch), peppers of some sort (to taste), and tomatoes. I use canned tomatoes because they are cheap, but also because I hate the taste of raw tomatoes. I usually use one can of crushed tomatoes (for body--I like thick salsa) and one can of chopped tomatoes (for texture). You can see a small can of diced peppery things in this shot--I experiment with whatever looks tasty.

I picked up some peppers (cannot remember what kind), cut them in half, removed the seeds, placed them face-down on a baking sheet, and popped them under the broiler, where they roasted gracefully and I then peeled off their blackend skins.

Nicely diced onions.

So it looks like I've added the onions, cilantro (I use the stems), garlic, and chopped peppers here.

Then you just stir it all together and adjust the seasonings. You may want to let it sit for a bit before you decide it's perfect; it tends to get hotter as it sits.
So a bowl this size is usually gone in about two days, but since it costs about $3 to make, I don't care. It's good for them. (Although I am currently experimenting with making it SUPER HOT so they won't eat it as fast.) There you go--make some salsa!


::is distracted::

There is change afloat here at the casa of beauteousness. Hopefully said change shall result in even MORE beauty being shed abroad, but I dare not say too much until we get more details figured out. So have a great weekend, enjoy the superbowl (the only sporting event I watch every year) I'll be back.



An examined life posted some of her favorite shopping sites and ohmyword, I am in love. Red Dress Shoppe sells new dresses inspired by vintage designs, and they're lovely. The prices definitely qualify as reasonable, too.