August 2, 2013

PLAY > Wale - Bad (Rihanna Remix)

Baby maker!  I can't. stop. listening...


Now, I don't want to play favorites, but I think the remix version featuring Rihanna is wayyy better than the original version, which featured Tiana Thomas.  Rihanna's island flavor and 'bad gal RiRi' reputation gave this song just what it needed to really catch fire.

Happy listening and have a uber-sexy weekend everybody!
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August 1, 2013

BUY or DIY: 10 Awesome Housewarming Gifts

My friend Taylor is having a housewarming party this week which got me thinking about housewarming gifts.

One of the best housewarming gifts I have ever received was also the simplest and most practical.  I was moving to Iowa City (IA) for college, and it was going to be my first time living away from home.  My mother being the best-mom-ever made that transition so much smoother by putting together the cutest box of home essentials.

The box included:
3 oz. bottle of Goo Gone
1 spray bottle of Resolve
1 can of Raid
2 small Crazy Glue tubes
1 roll of duct tape
1 roll  of clear tape
1 box of push-pins
1 mini tub of spackle paste
1 pack of rechargeable AA batteries
1 pack of rechargeable AAA batteries
Battery charger
Crank flashlight
Emergency Cash (an envelope with $200...pretty sure I spent this on everything but emergencies)

I wish I had taken a photo of it so I could show you guys now, because this box was EVERYTHING.  And by everything, I mean junk drawer heaven in a box.  The contents were utilized for multiple purposes, although, I can't say if I ever used Raid for anything.  My roommates and I lived in a really nice, clean dorm room, so thankfully we never had any insect infestations.  Anyways, this was easily my most favorite housewarming gift of all time.  I'm a true Virgo and love anything practical, so bravo mother, you did so good.

So, let's go back to the topic of Taylor's party this week.  I think a home essentials box is a great idea, but not everyone is supermom and can whip up something like that in a snap.  This leaves me yet to decide on what to get her, but I've brainstormed a good storm and managed to pull together some great ideas.  I made this list to help me, but I think it will help you too.

1.) Artwork
Paint something yourself or purchase a piece of art.  I'm obsessed with this art print that I found on Etsy...would be a very easy DIY project.
Custom Longitude and Latitude Print - ETSY

2.) Cooking Luxuries 
Gourmet oils and spices are coveted items in the kitchen, because they heighten the food experience.  La Tourangelle is one of my favorite brands for oils.  Great value and quality.
Infused White Truffle Oil - LA TOURANGELLE

3.) Fancy Totes
I'm a big fan of cute beverage transporters, and this 6-pack carrier is amazing!  Don't forget the beer!
Wooden Six Pack - TERRAIN or AMAZON

4.) Food Kit
A fun gift to put together and to enjoy with other house guests.  A s'mores kit or ice cream sundae box would be amazing!
DIY Ice Cream Sundae Box

5.) A Good Book
Why not gift a book lover one of their favorite things!  This book has stunning photographs...
The Art of Living by Claudia Steinberg - AMAZON

6.) Houseplants
A plant can do wonders.  It improves air quality...improves moods.  A potted plant would make an excellent gift, but how about this for a change of pace?
Hanging Glass Bubble - WEST ELM

7.) Monogrammed Things
Some people think monogram is cheesy, but I think it's incredibly stylish.  Especially when it's printed on a beautiful coffee mug...or a decorative throw pillow.
Monogrammed Mug - ANTHROPOLOGIE

8.) Mood Lighting
Candles are a standard go-to, but why not try an air purifying Himalayan salt lamp?
Himalayan Salt Lamp - TARGET
(can also be found at world stores and hippie stores)

9.) Table Twinkle
Anything metallic always adds a nice touch of sparkle to a living room.
Silver Street coasters - KATE SPADE or NORDSTROM

10.) Tasteful Tunes
You can't go wrong with these...perfect for all the music lovers in your life...and popcorn munchers.
Vinyl Record Bowl - MODERN ARTISANS

What have you guys given or received as housewarming presents?  Have any favorites?  Please comment below with more ideas!  I would love to hear about your experiences :)

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