if only in my dreams



Before I got really sick last year I pre-took photos in my Christmas outfit. I knew I'd be too busy on Christmas to sneak in outfit photos; plus this way I could schedule the pictures to post on Christmas morning. I wasn't sure what to do with the pictures once it became increasingly clear I definitely was not going to get to spend Christmas in this dress. But I really liked how they came out, and in a way my diligent planning created this little alternate universe where I *did* spend Christmas in a fancy dress with perfect eyeliner and a flawlessly functioning body, lol.

And to be honest, these pictures actually reflect how happy I felt on Christmas this year. I kept bursting into happy tears over literally everything. I was SO happy to be home with my family. I didn't have the energy to open my presents myself, so my dad did it for me. I was in pajamas with messy hair, and no makeup. I felt run down and so incredibly sick, and I wasn't wearing my perfect Christmas dress with its perfect bell-sleeves. But it was the happiest Christmas I've ever had in my entire life.





feeling lucky



Sorry I've been pretty MIA over the last few weeks! I had a health scare over the holidays and I'm just now starting to feel a little better.

I started feeling under the weather around Thanksgiving, when I had an intense nose bleed that I just attributed to a brewing sinus infection. Then I started bruising really easily, and I just attributed that to me moving some furniture around in the living room. My stomach was really upset, but I thought I was just really stressed from the holidays, and since I was in "Christmas work mode" I wasn't eating that well.. getting a lot of take out and munching on Christmas cookies. I just thought I was run down.

I finally went to the doctor after I had been sick for about two weeks. I almost fainted when I woke up that morning, and I thought it was time to finally cave in and go. He thought I just had a stomach bug, but he ordered blood work anyway just to make sure it wasn't anything serious, and he gave me  medicine for my symptoms. I felt better on the medicine, so I put off the blood work for a week. The day after I went in for the blood work, I got a call from the doctor telling me I had to go to the ER immediately because my platelet and hemoglobin counts were dangerously low. I was TERRIFIED. I ended up getting admitted to the hospital and after what seemed like five dozen tests I was diagnosed with c-diff, which is a bacterial infection in the colon, and if it's untreated quickly it's pretty deadly. I already had major blood loss and my colon was significantly inflamed... I caught it literally just in time. I was treated at the hospital for a couple more days and since I responded well to treatment, and my blood levels started returning to safe levels, I was luckily able to spend Christmas at home.

It's taken me about two weeks to feel even remotely normal again. My first round of antibiotics didn't knock out the infection, and I finish my second round of pills tonight. I feel like I have some energy back, and my stomach is feeling more settled, but my brain is still reeling with all the "what-if" scenarios. If I had just waited a few more days to get blood work, if I hadn't gone to the doctor, etc. I've never been so scared in my entire life.

I don't feel like I'm totally out of the woods yet, so I don't want to be like "yay! totally back to normal!" just yet. I still have to have more blood work, I have follow-up doctor's appointments, and apparently once you've had c-diff it's hard to shake it, so even though I feel a little better I'm still nervous that it's lurking around inside waiting to attack again.

I'll say one thing though, this whole experience has taught me so much and totally changed my approach to life. Part of the reason I didn't go to the doctor sooner was because I didn't want to spend the money. I had a lot of money-related stress last year and I was penny-pinching when I really shouldn't have. I tried to save a few hundred dollars by skipping the doctor, and that's going to cost me thousands in hospital bills. It was so colossally stupid of me to treat my health that way, and I'm never making that mistake again. No matter the cost, my health comes first. Not just because hospital bills are pricier than doctor bills, but because trying to save a few dollars almost killed me. Never ever again.

And god I probably sound so hokey but I learned that I need to stop being mopey all the time and stop taking life for granted. I have spent a lot of my adult life feeling blue about really stupid things. Even some of the big things are stupid in retrospect. I care WAY too much about my business and feeling unaccomplished for my age. I'm done letting that swallow my mood every day. When the doctor told me I was well enough to leave the hospital, nothing, and I mean NOTHING mattered to me as much as my parents, my cat, and being home. And I need to remember that more often. Since I've been home, even though I've still been sick, I've been looking around and just cherishing everything around me. I like breathing air, I like eating (even if it's been nothing but rice, toast, and applesauce for three weeks straight!), I like holding Arrietty and feeling her little heartbeat against my chest, I like watching movies with my mom and dad, I like feeling a cozy blanket tucked up against my chin, I like the feeling of falling asleep in my own comfy bed.

I feel so incredibly lucky to be alive and (knock on wood!) on the road to recovery. And between my parents and my best friends, I feel so incredibly loved right now. I just feel so appreciative of literally everything, and I'm looking forward to a happy and (knock on wood again!) healthy 2018 :)

meowy christmas



I should have taken a close-up photo of this dress because the print is so cute! It's covered in little illustrations of cats in Christmas wreaths! Cats and Christmas -- two of my favorite things! :) I can't believe Christmas is only three days away now!! I'm excited about it but I'm also prematurely bummed about taking down my decorations and turning off the Christmas music. I know that part of what makes the lights and tunes feel so magical is the fact that they're only around for a couple months each year, but I still get an urge every December to just leave my tree up for 365 days lol.

And I'm pretty sure that I'll still be listening to Christmas music for at least another month or two. Here's my playlist if you want to listen along with me :) I always start Christmas playlists with Christmas Wrapping by The Waitresses... it gets me in a festive mood instantly!



Spotify wouldn't let me include some of my favorites, so here are some links for youtube videos for those instead:

Blue Christmas by Danielle Dax
Joel the Lump of Coal by The Killers
We Three Kings by Blondie
The Cowboy's Christmas Ball by The Killers
Winter Wonderland by Goldfrapp



dress - modcloth | shirt - vintage | shoes - bait footwear | wig - keke wigs

pursuit of happiness



I've had a lot of stress-related health issues this year, and one of the ways I've been trying to help combat the stress is to actively try to be happy. It doesn't really come naturally to me most of the time; I get really caught up in stressful thoughts and it's hard to find my way out of them. So I started making mental notes of the things that cheer me up and I'm cramming them into my day. I go for walks with my dad regularly, I started meditating, and I've been doing little craft projects just for fun. I have a little note on my monitor that says "listen to music and pet Arrietty!" Whenever I'm working in silence or listening to the news, I'll see that note and switch over to my Killers playlist to lighten my mood. And honestly nothing melts away my stress like a good cuddle with my cat, so when stress is starting to weigh me down I spend some time with Arrietty. She's usually by my side all day anyway, but petting her and hugging her helps a lot. 

I've also been trying lately to watch more happy, corny movies. Anyone who knows me well would be shocked (I literally get movie recommendations all the time that go something like "it's depressing, you'll love it!" or "it has a happy ending but I think you'd like it anyway!" haha!) but it's not as bad as I expected lol. Corny movies can be really fun and I'm actually enjoying them way more than I thought I would. My mom had been trying to get me to watch this Netflix Christmas movie, The 12 Dates of Christmas, for the longest time but it just didn't seem like my type of movie. I finally watched it with her last week and it was delightful! And I felt so happy and relaxed the whole time I was watching it. Considering that most of my favorite movies either make me cry or leave me feeling a little despondent, it was quite a change of pace lol!

Trying to be happy isn't a cure-all for stress, but it's helping, and it feels like a worthwhile goal even if eliminating stress is just a byproduct. We should all try to be a little happier. It can't hurt :)



Ho! Ho! Ho!



If you're still trying to snag a last minute Christmas gift, I'm offering free Priority Mail shipping on any $20+ order in my shop today only with code "QUICKSHIP"

Right now it's snowing outside, I have my Christmas tree lights on, Christmas music is playing (I'll be sharing a little Christmas playlist next week!) and I'm packing up the last few orders that are coming through before the holiday shopping season is over. I know it's kind of silly but I always feel a little bit like Santa (or at least one of his elves!) when I'm getting my holiday orders ready. And on Christmas morning I can't help but think of my prints and pins and whatnots sitting under trees all across the world waiting to be unwrapped. It gives me warm fuzzies! :)


dress - asos | cardigan - amazon | shoes - bait footwear | wig - keke wigs

heirloom ornaments



Last week my brother and I helped my mom decorate the family Christmas tree. She mentioned to him that when he and his girlfriend get married, he'll get some of the ornaments for his own tree. We have a family tradition of passing down ornaments when a kid gets married and starts their own family. All of the vintage ornaments on our tree were passed down from my grandmom to my mom when my parents tied the knot.

As you probably know, I'm perpetually single. Not just that I don't have a steady boyfriend at the moment, I mean I've never dated before. Ever. It used to bother me a lot but over the last year or so I've not only come to terms with it, I've grown pretty attached to the idea of staying single. At this point in my life, I do not plan on getting married or pairing up with anyone. I feel like it's just not in the cards for me and I'm totally okay with that. But it begs the question -- if marriage is the milestone that initiates the handing down of the ornaments, when do I get mine?! lol!

So I asked my mom if she'd let me have my share now. I'm already 31, I have my own Christmas tree, and I love these ornaments SO much. Ever since I was little they were always my favorite ones to put up, and I dreamed about getting to decorate my own tree with them someday. Well luckily, "someday" is now, because I have an incredibly awesome and understanding mom. Not only did she immediately, enthusiastically agree to letting me have a handful of ornaments, she balked at the eight I picked out and insisted that I go back for four more to make it an even dozen.

I'm super lucky to have a very understanding family that is totally okay with my spinsterhood. I've never once been asked when I'd settle down and find a boyfriend, and I've never had to hear any intrusive hints about my biological clock. I know that a lot of single girls aren't so lucky, and it makes me appreciate my family all the more for it. And if you're in a similar situation and you've been eyeing some family ornaments for your tree, try asking! I think a surprising amount of people my age are unattached and we're missing out on some family traditions like this just because we're not following the conventional road path of life, and nobody really knows how to adjust old traditions to new lifestyles. So we need to make up our own rules! :)

sugar plum



Three posts in one week! Is that a pig that just flew by my window?

I've just had the blogging bug lately. I've had to go back through my old posts to replace all of my photobucket pictures (more on that in a minute) and it got me reminiscing about the days when I used to blog twelve times A WEEK. It just made me want to blog more. Not 12 times a week but maybe at least once or twice lol! I feel like anytime I say that out loud it's the kiss of death and I don't write another blog post for five months but I'm just saying it. I want to blog more. We'll see what happens...

As for photobucket, just a little PSA for any other bloggers who might have been using them to host your photos -- this year they announced that they were deleting all free plans, and the $29/year plan (which is what I was using) is going up to $399/year. *record-scratch* The new pricing goes into effect at the end of the year so I've been trying to move all of my photos over to imgur instead. It's tricky because every single post of mine from 2015 back has at least one image from photobucket and I have to manually change the code on each one. It doesn't help that blogger apparently has a limit on how many posts you can edit each day, so I've been doing it in increments hoping that I'll manage to get all of my posts finished in time to cancel my photobucket account before the price hike.

It's so frustrating that so much of what we do online can be upended in a heartbeat. Even this whole blog -- if google decides one day to shut down the Blogspot part of its empire because it isn't profitable enough, we'll all be scrambling to figure out how to save our blogs. And don't get me started on net neutrality and the idea that the whole entire internet itself could be out of our reach if we don't have enough money to buy access to it. *screams*

Anyway. I guess my whole point was just to alert any paid photobucket users to hurry up and transfer your photos before the end of the month. Also I found this tutorial for downloading your photobucket albums if you're worried about losing your photos.


shirt - dolls kill (old) | skirt - urban outfitters (old) 
shoes - aldo (old) similar | wig - keke wigs

DIY tapestry curtains



I recently ordered a set of window curtains from Society6, and when they arrived I realized they were very dull, with a grey background, and they're room darkening (in their defense, it does say room darkening in the product description and I totally missed that when I ordered them.) I contacted Society6 to see if this was just a printing mistake. But they told me that unlike all of their other products, their curtains are printed on a grey base so a design like this -- vibrant with a white background -- just doesn't print as nicely as a darker, more muted design might.

I was very intent on having curtains with this design though, so I did a little measuring and figured out that Society6 tapestries (in size large) are almost exactly the same size as a set of window panels. All I had to do was cut it in half width-wise and buy a set of curtain clips to hang them.

My tapestry arrived in the mail yesterday, and I hung up one panel opposite one of Society6's window panels to show you the difference:



The panel on the left is the tapestry, and the panel on the right is the real window panel. See how vibrant and bright the tapestry panel is?! It's EXACTLY what I had in mind when I ordered the curtains to begin with. Something really fun and colorful to liven up this area in my workspace!

Also I think I like the way the panels look with curtain rings better. The panel hangs better from the rings, rather than bunching up awkwardly like the panel with the curtain rod pocket does. But mostly I'm just thrilled about the vibrancy. You can really see in these photos how greyed out and dull the regular curtain looks compared to the tapestry panel. I'm so thrilled that I thought to try this! And it's almost $40 cheaper to get one tapestry & cut it in half than it is to buy a set of two window panels!!

I just thought I'd post about it in case anyone else was thinking about trying Society6 curtains. I used these curtain rings but make sure they'd fit on your curtain rod before ordering. My curtain rod has a 1" diameter so they fit perfectly. (This is my curtain rod, by the way.)

And I used this tapestry design from my Society6 shop in a size large. I have over 20 different designs in my shop here. The tapestries also work great as bed coverings in the summer when you want to add some flair to your bed without the extra heat that comes with throw blankets or comforters! I have a queen bed and a medium tapestry is the perfect size for it :)

Also, in case you're wondering... yes, I do have one tree for me and a matching one for my cat. I've reached peak cat lady lol.