Posts tagged with ‘holidays’

Brandon and I were up until 4 am building her toy kitchen. I had a complete meltdown around 3:30. I turned into Delirious Christmas Bitch (it was bound to happen) and after some choice words were exchanged, I ended up calling Brandon a fucking idiot as I slammed a piece of the kitchen into place. Then I had to run after him (“That’s it, I’m going to bed, whatever, I don’t even care”) and apologize for turning into such an asshole. Because that’s what Christmas is all about, right? FAMILY. 
I dreaded this Christmas like I’ve dreaded many Christmases past and I put on a semi-happy face and went through the motions of putting up the tree, buying the presents, wrapping the gifts, cooking the food. My internal dialogue was void of any real emotion except cynicism, but I smiled and faked it through the 20-some days between Thanksgiving and Doomsday Christmas. 
Then the toy kitchen. Then three hours of sleep. Then a jiggle of the doorknob from Isobel’s room and there she was in her Santa jammies, holding her blanket and her Elmo, looking at me sleepily and leaning on my shoulder like she does every morning. Something happened, something switched, and I thought to myself HOLY CRAP THIS DAY IS GOING TO BE AMAZING. I carried her down the stairs and she saw her gifts and smiled so big and I could feel all the magical, wonderful things about childhood Christmases coming back to me. 
Let’s be clear. There were blips. This wasn’t a perfect Christmas because I don’t think those exist or can exist—at least not for us. But this was a healing Christmas. It was a step in the right direction. A glimmer of hope that we can redefine our family in a way that still feels good and right.
This Christmas I felt lucky and blessed to be able to give my daughter a warm house, good food and special gifts. These things are a privilege. I am grateful for them. I am also fortunate to have a husband with a short memory who could wake up and give me a hug and tell me that he loved me mere hours after I called him a fucking idiot. 
Perspective is important: Important for all things really, but especially Christmas. 
I hope you had a wonderful holiday. And if you didn’t, well…you’ve got about a year to prepare yourself before it happens again. A Christmas miracle! :) 

Brandon and I were up until 4 am building her toy kitchen. I had a complete meltdown around 3:30. I turned into Delirious Christmas Bitch (it was bound to happen) and after some choice words were exchanged, I ended up calling Brandon a fucking idiot as I slammed a piece of the kitchen into place. Then I had to run after him (“That’s it, I’m going to bed, whatever, I don’t even care”) and apologize for turning into such an asshole. Because that’s what Christmas is all about, right? FAMILY. 

I dreaded this Christmas like I’ve dreaded many Christmases past and I put on a semi-happy face and went through the motions of putting up the tree, buying the presents, wrapping the gifts, cooking the food. My internal dialogue was void of any real emotion except cynicism, but I smiled and faked it through the 20-some days between Thanksgiving and Doomsday Christmas. 

Then the toy kitchen. Then three hours of sleep. Then a jiggle of the doorknob from Isobel’s room and there she was in her Santa jammies, holding her blanket and her Elmo, looking at me sleepily and leaning on my shoulder like she does every morning. Something happened, something switched, and I thought to myself HOLY CRAP THIS DAY IS GOING TO BE AMAZING. I carried her down the stairs and she saw her gifts and smiled so big and I could feel all the magical, wonderful things about childhood Christmases coming back to me. 

Let’s be clear. There were blips. This wasn’t a perfect Christmas because I don’t think those exist or can exist—at least not for us. But this was a healing Christmas. It was a step in the right direction. A glimmer of hope that we can redefine our family in a way that still feels good and right.

This Christmas I felt lucky and blessed to be able to give my daughter a warm house, good food and special gifts. These things are a privilege. I am grateful for them. I am also fortunate to have a husband with a short memory who could wake up and give me a hug and tell me that he loved me mere hours after I called him a fucking idiot. 

Perspective is important: Important for all things really, but especially Christmas. 

I hope you had a wonderful holiday. And if you didn’t, well…you’ve got about a year to prepare yourself before it happens again. A Christmas miracle! :) 

cutebutfiery asked: HI Jaclyn! Since you're so good at scouring the web, I thought I'd reach out and see if you can help me out! My fiance and I have gave each other a $200 limit for Christmas gifts. He travels all the time for work and uses this terrible carry-on duffel bag from college each time he goes on a trip. I'd like to find him a nice piece of luggage or travel accessories that also fit his personal style. He's a Creative Director at an ad agency and smitten with all things JCrew. Any thoughts?

Have you checked out Everlane’s $95 weekender? It’s available in several different color combinations and if he’s used to using a duffel, he might like being able to sling it over his shoulder. 

A few other options: Lipault Paris’ wheeled carry-on is a nice size and can be carried two ways ($189). Herschel Supply has a J.Crew-like aesthetic and their carry-on luggage is $185. There are some unique options on Fab by Hideo Wakamatsu. This carry-on with two wheels looks awesome…and can be worn as a backpack! It’s $179. If you don’t mind going a bit over budget, the carry-on in white is pretty sleek. It’s $249. LLBean’s Commuter Pullman luggage ($199) is another idea. The great thing about LLBean luggage is that if it rips, has a broken zipper—any sort of damage—they’ll replace it, no questions asked. 

tmfoy asked: Hi! Long time reader asking for some quick advice. I live in Milwaukee, Wisconsin (it's 4 degrees right now...), and I'm busy shopping for New Year's Eve outfits. Considering the chilly weather, I'm looking this year to NOT freeze my tail off in a dress/skirt. I was looking for some skinny ankle pants that would still be festive and fun, maybe something with lace or sparkles? Thanks for your help! - Theresa

Lots of fun options for you:

The back of this ZARA dress is everything. Wish I had somewhere to wear it because I WOULD WEAR IT THERE. It’s $80. 

I saved the fun one for last. There’s something really special about watching your child open a gift on Christmas morning. I’m looking forward to it again this year…and Isobel is old enough now to really be excited about the toys and books that we’ve picked out. 
Here are some kid- and baby-friendly Christmas gifts that caught my eye:
Secret Garden Coloring Book, $10.76 (1) - Coloring is such a parenting perk. This book is full of gorgeous, intricate illustrations. 
Richard Scarry’s Cars and Trucks and Things That Go, $12 (2) - I’m excited to give Isobel this book. She’s really into cars and airplanes and trains right now and Richard Scarry illustrations are the best. 
Melissa & Doug Habitats Reusable Sticker Book, about $8 (3) - Animals + stickers. Perfect! 
Sesame Street Elmo Night Light, $16 (4) - Isobel’s favorite new toy/night light would be a good stocking stuffer.
Dragons Love Tacos by Adam Rubin and Daniel Salmieri, $12 (5) - TACOS. 
National Geographic Animal Holiday DVD, $9.96 (6) - Cute animals doing cute things! 
Minnetonka Sheepskin Bootie, $30 (7) - Baby/toddler moccasins are popular right now, but this $30 pair is one of the more affordable (and adorable) options I’ve seen. 
Oeuf Hug Me Sweater, $98-$106 (8) - Completely expensy, but if you’re going to splurge, do it at Oeuf. 
Fisher-Price Classic Infant Trio Set, $38 (9) - A collection of some of Isobel’s favorite toys. 
Arks and Animals Dinosaur Block Set, $27.25 (10) - So cute! 
KagesKrayons Gingerbread Man Crayons, $7 (11) - Another stocking stuffer idea. 
The Land of Nod Magnificent Milestone Gift Sets, $60-$219 (12) - These are GREAT gifts. Each set comes with a few age-specific toys. 
Anthropologie Pirate Rattles, $88 (13) - Also stupid expensy, but so sweet. 
Gap Quilted Bear Footed One-Piece, $40 (14) - Good newborn/infant gift. They don’t care about toys, so get mom and dad something practical. 
Sandy Ford Design Personalized Paper Doll Kits, about $40 (15) - I LOVE the idea of personalized paper dolls and was so excited to see that they have boy options. 
Skiphop Zoo Lunchie Bags, $14 each (16) - Another practical gift idea. 
Uncommon Goods Periodic Table Building Blocks, $31 (17) - I mean. 
Just Play Doc McStuffins Stuffy Plush, $16 (18) - Any Doc McStuffins fans? 
Egg and Yolk Wooden Camera, $53.55 (19) - I love that this comes with another lens. Hilarious. 
Schoenhut My First Piano, $55 (20) - Isobel loves her little piano.  
Uncommon Goods Little Librarian Kit, $15 (21) - They’ve discontinued this, so when it’s gone, it’s gone forever! My sister and I would have died for this as kids. 
Keepsake Toys Personalized Wooden Airplane, $30 (22) - Keepsake toys are a great gift for parents AND kids. 
Hape Checkout Register, about $32 (23) - I’ve yet to meet a kid who is not totally fascinated by cash register toys at some point. 
The Wonderful World of Dr. Seuss, about $80 (24) - For anyone trying to start a good library for their kid—this Dr. Seuss collection is amazing. 
bubyNoa Critter Doll, $54 (25) - If you want to get something that’s not the BlaBla dolls that everyone has…
WoolyBaby Toddler Slippers, $34 (26) - Everyone gets slippers on Christmas! 
Toy Worx Lumber Train Set, $60 (27) - Lots of fun little details on this wooden train set. 
The Met Store My First ABC Flash Cards, $16 (28) - ABC flash cards using paintings to illustrate the letters.  
Hape Coffee Maker, $30 (29) - Teach them young. 
Von Bon Kids Polka Dot Blanket, $54 (30) - Von Bon has several other good gift items for infants. 
HC Woodcraft Baby Rattle, $12 (31) - Another keepsake toy option. 
Satch & Sol Woolly Bootie Slipper, $40 (32) - Felted wool slippers, so cute. 
Playskool Big Hugs Elmo, $52 (33) - Toy of the year? 
Melissa & Doug Animal Rescue Shape-Sorting Truck, $18.70 (34) - Isobel has this. Great little toy. 
A Summer Afternoon Wooden Toy Workbench, $58 (35) - Love the detail on this. 
The Sneaky, Snacky Squirrel Game, $17.16; Shelby’s Snack Shack Game, $13.49; BBQ Blitz Game, $14 (36) - Three top-rated games from Educational Insights. 
Giggle Diggin Skootcase, $70 (37) - Sleek ride-on toy, but also doubles as airport entertainment. Can be stowed in airplane overhead compartments. 
CitiBlocs Rattle Blocks, $30 (38) - One of the best toys we got Isobel for Christmas last year. She stills plays with them. 
Pottery Barn Kids Anywhere Chair, about $90 (39) - The perfect personalized gift. 

I saved the fun one for last. There’s something really special about watching your child open a gift on Christmas morning. I’m looking forward to it again this year…and Isobel is old enough now to really be excited about the toys and books that we’ve picked out. 

Here are some kid- and baby-friendly Christmas gifts that caught my eye:

  1. Secret Garden Coloring Book, $10.76 (1) - Coloring is such a parenting perk. This book is full of gorgeous, intricate illustrations. 
  2. Richard Scarry’s Cars and Trucks and Things That Go, $12 (2) - I’m excited to give Isobel this book. She’s really into cars and airplanes and trains right now and Richard Scarry illustrations are the best. 
  3. Melissa & Doug Habitats Reusable Sticker Book, about $8 (3) - Animals + stickers. Perfect! 
  4. Sesame Street Elmo Night Light, $16 (4) - Isobel’s favorite new toy/night light would be a good stocking stuffer.
  5. Dragons Love Tacos by Adam Rubin and Daniel Salmieri, $12 (5) - TACOS. 
  6. National Geographic Animal Holiday DVD, $9.96 (6) - Cute animals doing cute things! 
  7. Minnetonka Sheepskin Bootie, $30 (7) - Baby/toddler moccasins are popular right now, but this $30 pair is one of the more affordable (and adorable) options I’ve seen. 
  8. Oeuf Hug Me Sweater, $98-$106 (8) - Completely expensy, but if you’re going to splurge, do it at Oeuf. 
  9. Fisher-Price Classic Infant Trio Set, $38 (9) - A collection of some of Isobel’s favorite toys. 
  10. Arks and Animals Dinosaur Block Set, $27.25 (10) - So cute! 
  11. KagesKrayons Gingerbread Man Crayons, $7 (11) - Another stocking stuffer idea. 
  12. The Land of Nod Magnificent Milestone Gift Sets, $60-$219 (12) - These are GREAT gifts. Each set comes with a few age-specific toys. 
  13. Anthropologie Pirate Rattles, $88 (13) - Also stupid expensy, but so sweet. 
  14. Gap Quilted Bear Footed One-Piece, $40 (14) - Good newborn/infant gift. They don’t care about toys, so get mom and dad something practical. 
  15. Sandy Ford Design Personalized Paper Doll Kits, about $40 (15) - I LOVE the idea of personalized paper dolls and was so excited to see that they have boy options. 
  16. Skiphop Zoo Lunchie Bags, $14 each (16) - Another practical gift idea. 
  17. Uncommon Goods Periodic Table Building Blocks, $31 (17) - I mean. 
  18. Just Play Doc McStuffins Stuffy Plush, $16 (18) - Any Doc McStuffins fans? 
  19. Egg and Yolk Wooden Camera, $53.55 (19) - I love that this comes with another lens. Hilarious. 
  20. Schoenhut My First Piano, $55 (20) - Isobel loves her little piano.  
  21. Uncommon Goods Little Librarian Kit, $15 (21) - They’ve discontinued this, so when it’s gone, it’s gone forever! My sister and I would have died for this as kids. 
  22. Keepsake Toys Personalized Wooden Airplane, $30 (22) - Keepsake toys are a great gift for parents AND kids. 
  23. Hape Checkout Register, about $32 (23) - I’ve yet to meet a kid who is not totally fascinated by cash register toys at some point. 
  24. The Wonderful World of Dr. Seuss, about $80 (24) - For anyone trying to start a good library for their kid—this Dr. Seuss collection is amazing. 
  25. bubyNoa Critter Doll, $54 (25) - If you want to get something that’s not the BlaBla dolls that everyone has…
  26. WoolyBaby Toddler Slippers, $34 (26) - Everyone gets slippers on Christmas! 
  27. Toy Worx Lumber Train Set, $60 (27) - Lots of fun little details on this wooden train set. 
  28. The Met Store My First ABC Flash Cards, $16 (28) - ABC flash cards using paintings to illustrate the letters.  
  29. Hape Coffee Maker, $30 (29) - Teach them young. 
  30. Von Bon Kids Polka Dot Blanket, $54 (30) - Von Bon has several other good gift items for infants. 
  31. HC Woodcraft Baby Rattle, $12 (31) - Another keepsake toy option. 
  32. Satch & Sol Woolly Bootie Slipper, $40 (32) - Felted wool slippers, so cute. 
  33. Playskool Big Hugs Elmo, $52 (33) - Toy of the year? 
  34. Melissa & Doug Animal Rescue Shape-Sorting Truck, $18.70 (34) - Isobel has this. Great little toy. 
  35. A Summer Afternoon Wooden Toy Workbench, $58 (35) - Love the detail on this. 
  36. The Sneaky, Snacky Squirrel Game, $17.16; Shelby’s Snack Shack Game, $13.49; BBQ Blitz Game, $14 (36) - Three top-rated games from Educational Insights. 
  37. Giggle Diggin Skootcase, $70 (37) - Sleek ride-on toy, but also doubles as airport entertainment. Can be stowed in airplane overhead compartments. 
  38. CitiBlocs Rattle Blocks, $30 (38) - One of the best toys we got Isobel for Christmas last year. She stills plays with them. 
  39. Pottery Barn Kids Anywhere Chair, about $90 (39) - The perfect personalized gift. 
If you need more gift ideas (whether for you or for someone else), Fossil has a lot of really great options right now. Their recent stuff has been really impressive—high quality leather, classic bag shapes, J.Crew-like accessories—and the prices are affordable. Here are a few gift options to suit any budget:
Under $50: Fossil Glitter Wrist Wrap, $48 (1) - Great gift for a sister or friend. 
Under $100: Fossil Signature Flower Bangle, $58 (2) - This looks more expensive than it is and would be nice worn together with a watch. 
Under $50: Fossil Haircalf Cuff, $38 (3) - I love this.
Under $100: Fossil iPad Mini Zip Tech Easel, $75 (4) - This leather iPad mini case doubles as an easel too. The price is really great for the quality. 
Fossil Sydney Limited Edition Tote, $298 (5) - Ahh, so chic. It’s the kind of tote I always have in my head as THE TOTE but hardly ever find (especially under $300). 
Fossil Sydney Satchel, $178 (6) - This structured crossbody is really pretty and available in several other colors. 
Fossil Vintage Re-Issue Weekender, $248 (7) - It’s also available in some fun metallics, but I like this dark brown best. 
Fossil Erin Satchel, $218 (8) - This bag is the one that caught my eye first. I’m a sucker for pebbled leather and the brown/black combo is so versatile. This can also be worn crossbody. 
Under $50: Fossil Constellation iPhone Case, $35 (9) - Another stocking stuffer idea. 
Under $50: Fossil Zip Clutch, $50 (10) - This is another great friend gift. Sparkly, bright, cute. 
Fossil Cecile Multifunction Stainless Steel Watch, $145 (11) - Fossil’s watches are similar to Michael Kors in design, but they’re a good $100-$200 cheaper. 
Under $50: Fossil Key-Per Frame Coin Purse, $30 (12) - I like the trumpet print! At least it’s not a forest animal. #nomoreforestanimals
This post was sponsored by Shopstyle, but the items included are ones I independently chose based on my personal preferences. 

If you need more gift ideas (whether for you or for someone else), Fossil has a lot of really great options right now. Their recent stuff has been really impressive—high quality leather, classic bag shapes, J.Crew-like accessories—and the prices are affordable. Here are a few gift options to suit any budget:

  1. Under $50: Fossil Glitter Wrist Wrap, $48 (1) - Great gift for a sister or friend. 
  2. Under $100: Fossil Signature Flower Bangle, $58 (2) - This looks more expensive than it is and would be nice worn together with a watch. 
  3. Under $50: Fossil Haircalf Cuff, $38 (3) - I love this.
  4. Under $100: Fossil iPad Mini Zip Tech Easel, $75 (4) - This leather iPad mini case doubles as an easel too. The price is really great for the quality. 
  5. Fossil Sydney Limited Edition Tote, $298 (5) - Ahh, so chic. It’s the kind of tote I always have in my head as THE TOTE but hardly ever find (especially under $300). 
  6. Fossil Sydney Satchel, $178 (6) - This structured crossbody is really pretty and available in several other colors. 
  7. Fossil Vintage Re-Issue Weekender, $248 (7) - It’s also available in some fun metallics, but I like this dark brown best. 
  8. Fossil Erin Satchel, $218 (8) - This bag is the one that caught my eye first. I’m a sucker for pebbled leather and the brown/black combo is so versatile. This can also be worn crossbody. 
  9. Under $50: Fossil Constellation iPhone Case, $35 (9) - Another stocking stuffer idea. 
  10. Under $50: Fossil Zip Clutch, $50 (10) - This is another great friend gift. Sparkly, bright, cute. 
  11. Fossil Cecile Multifunction Stainless Steel Watch, $145 (11) - Fossil’s watches are similar to Michael Kors in design, but they’re a good $100-$200 cheaper. 
  12. Under $50: Fossil Key-Per Frame Coin Purse, $30 (12) - I like the trumpet print! At least it’s not a forest animal. #nomoreforestanimals

This post was sponsored by Shopstyle, but the items included are ones I independently chose based on my personal preferences. 

New Year’s Eve dress. Duh. ($108 from ASOS) 

New Year’s Eve dress. Duh. ($108 from ASOS

This is the guide for everyone else: The people on your list that stump you every year. But no more! Buy them something, cross them off. Be done with it. Gift cards aren’t a cop out either. They’re convenient and easy. I know some people hate giving gift cards—they think it isn’t thoughtful. But have YOU ever been disappointed to receive a gift card? I haven’t. Gift cards are great, especially if they involve free food or coffee. If you hate the thought of just handing over a gift card, put it in a coffee mug or something that reflects the theme of where the card goes to. 
For the coffee lover: Mistobox, starting at $20 (1) - Gourmet coffee sampler delivered monthly. 
For the person that has everything and can appreciate a slightly cool/slightly obnoxious gift: Plaid Pigeon Dinosaur Planter, $33 (2) 
For anyone, obviously: Beyonce and Kate Moss Paper Dolls, about $12 each (3)
For your BFF: UO Besties iPhone Cases, $28 (4) 
If you have too many friends to buy for: Baublebar Ring Trees, $12 each (5) 
An easy gift for someone who likes fashion and/or blogs and/or loves Pinterest: Paris Street Style by Isabelle Thomas and Frédérique Veysset, $19 (6)
You know at least one aspiring or legitimate food snob, right?: Moleskine Gift Box Gourmet Set, $35 (7)
Throw in a Starbucks gift card and these are the perfect coworker gift: West Elm Charity Mugs, $10 each (8)
Because everyone likes wine and a cute little holiday bag makes sense: Williams-Sonoma Embroidered Berry Wine Bag, $15 (9)
Throw in an insanely overpriced but admittedly clever bottle opener and you’re good to go: Anthropologie Noctua Bottle Opener, $28 (10)
For the vegetarian friend or coworker: The French Market Cookbook: Vegetarian Recipes from My Parisian Kitchen by Clotilde Dusoulier, $17 (11)
Hostess with a sense of humor gift: Fab Keep the Change Doormat, $29 (12)
Another easy coworker idea: Starbucks Stainless Steel Rose Gold Cup, $20 (13) 
Everyone loves snacks: Love with Food Snack Box, starting at $10 per month (14)

This is the guide for everyone else: The people on your list that stump you every year. But no more! Buy them something, cross them off. Be done with it. Gift cards aren’t a cop out either. They’re convenient and easy. I know some people hate giving gift cards—they think it isn’t thoughtful. But have YOU ever been disappointed to receive a gift card? I haven’t. Gift cards are great, especially if they involve free food or coffee. If you hate the thought of just handing over a gift card, put it in a coffee mug or something that reflects the theme of where the card goes to. 

  1. For the coffee lover: Mistobox, starting at $20 (1) - Gourmet coffee sampler delivered monthly. 
  2. For the person that has everything and can appreciate a slightly cool/slightly obnoxious gift: Plaid Pigeon Dinosaur Planter, $33 (2) 
  3. For anyone, obviously: Beyonce and Kate Moss Paper Dolls, about $12 each (3)
  4. For your BFF: UO Besties iPhone Cases, $28 (4) 
  5. If you have too many friends to buy for: Baublebar Ring Trees, $12 each (5) 
  6. An easy gift for someone who likes fashion and/or blogs and/or loves Pinterest: Paris Street Style by Isabelle Thomas and Frédérique Veysset, $19 (6)
  7. You know at least one aspiring or legitimate food snob, right?: Moleskine Gift Box Gourmet Set, $35 (7)
  8. Throw in a Starbucks gift card and these are the perfect coworker gift: West Elm Charity Mugs, $10 each (8)
  9. Because everyone likes wine and a cute little holiday bag makes sense: Williams-Sonoma Embroidered Berry Wine Bag, $15 (9)
  10. Throw in an insanely overpriced but admittedly clever bottle opener and you’re good to go: Anthropologie Noctua Bottle Opener, $28 (10)
  11. For the vegetarian friend or coworker: The French Market Cookbook: Vegetarian Recipes from My Parisian Kitchen by Clotilde Dusoulier, $17 (11)
  12. Hostess with a sense of humor gift: Fab Keep the Change Doormat, $29 (12)
  13. Another easy coworker idea: Starbucks Stainless Steel Rose Gold Cup, $20 (13) 
  14. Everyone loves snacks: Love with Food Snack Box, starting at $10 per month (14)
I’m really fascinated by the activewear industry. Where there used to be one or two luxury brands and the standard athletic labels (Nike, Adidas, etc.), now there are tons of new competitors. This is good news—I think Lululemon has had the corner on the higher-end activewear market for way too long. And frankly, I’m tired of the scarcity model. If you need a running shirt, you shouldn’t have to worry that you won’t be able to find it in your size because the company is making fewer pieces than demand requires. Now you can pick up high-quality technical pieces at Target while you buy your shampoo…or you can join several of the online monthly fitness clubs that have popped up and get great activewear at an affordable price. Retailers like Gap and Express offer promo codes so often that you can pick up their stuff at heavily discounted prices at least once a week. I tried to find a good mix of price points and brands and included a few accessories too—they’re easier to buy for someone else than clothes! 
GapFit Breathe Long Sleeve Tee, $30 (1) - These are rapidly becoming a word-of-mouth must-have basic and although I don’t own this shirt yet, it’s on my list. 
Under Armour Cozy Neck Shimmer, $60 (2) - Under Armour is looking to compete with Lululemon and has been designing some really great stuff this past year. 
Fabletics “Capable”, $50 for VIP members (3) - I’ve been writing about Fabletics a lot lately, but I am SUPER impressed. The quality seems a touch better than Ellie and the newer designs—like this outfit—are really nice. I just ordered this. 
Sweaty Bands Head Wrap, $15 (4) - So many people swear by these! Good stocking stuffer.
Cory Vines Essential Long Sleeve Tee, $35 (5) - Cory Vines is a new-ish fitness store modeled similarly to Everlane. They don’t have a lot of product options, but the stuff they do have looks nice—and is priced just right. 
Nordstrom Beyond Yoga Shawl Collar Jacket, $176 (6) - Love the shawl collar! 
GapFit Distance Leggings, $65 (7) - This color is fun and I like the ankle zippers. 
Nike Half Zip Running Shirt, $73.70 (from $110) (8) - Also available in pink. 
Shashi Classic Cool Feet Grip Socks, $15 (9) - Cute socks for yoga or barre, etc. 
Nike E2 Prime Performance Armband, $35 (10) - Also available in pink. 
Express Core Strappy Tank, $39.90 (11) - Express has some new performance stuff that I like. This tank is great. 
Target C9 by Champion Puffer Vest, $30 (12) - Such a good price! 
Free People Floral Yoga Socks, $12 (13) - Another stocking idea. 
Zella Live In Eclipse Space Dye Leggings, $58 (14) - Love these Zella leggings! They’re really comfortable and more fun than basic black for the gym. 
Fitbit Flex, $99 (15) - Fitness trackers are a big gift this season. There are several different options, so do your homework, but I know a lot of friends that have Fitbit and like it. 
Contigo AUTOSEAL 24-Ounce Water Bottle, $10.29 (16) - My favorite water bottle. I drink twice as much (at least) throughout the day when I keep this handy. 
Active Apparel Tank Top, $27 (17) - HA! 
Nike Air Max 2014 Running Shoe, $180 (18) - These new Nikes are pretty. 
Fabletics “Spirited”, $60 with VIP membership (19) - Ordered this one too. Excited to try red leggings instead of black or gray for a change. 

Athleta Tranquility Cowl Neck, $89 (20) - Perfect post-workout layer. 


Lululemon Cool Racerback in Slalom Stripe, $42 (21) - Great basic tanks. You can wear them as an everyday layering piece too. 
Athleta Polartec Power Stretch 2 Tights, $79 (22) - Running in the cold? These tights are fleece-lined. 
Michi Cyclone Top, $195 (23) - This is a completely ridiculous price (and a somewhat ridiculous top), but on the right person? GOOD. 

Trigger Point Performance The Grid Revolutionary Foam Roller, $39 (24) - Available in other colors. 


Shop Something Blue Marathon Necklace, $44.50 (25) - This is Tumblr so I am confident you either ran a marathon this year or know someone that did. 
Stella McCartney for adidas Gym Bag, $70 (from $100) (26) - I like that it can be worn crossbody. 
Camelbak Eddy Glass Bottle, $20 (27) - Another water bottle option. 
UP by Jawbone, $129 (28) - Another popular fitness tracker. 
Target C9 by Champion Fleece Pullover, $19.60 (from $28) (29) - Available in 4 other colors. 
Vitamix TurboBlend Two Speed, $373 (30) - Splurge! 
YogaRat Sport Hand + Face Towel Set, $20 (31) - Again—for a stocking! 
Garmin Forerunner 310XT Waterproof Running GPS With USB ANT Stick and Heart Rate Monitor, $186 (32) - Read good things about this. 
Manduka Breathe, Bind & Align Package, about $130 (33) - The perfect gift for the yoga fan. 
Lululemon Enlighten and Expand Tote, $68 (34) - I like this new gym bag from Lululemon and the price is surprising (in a good way). 
Nathan Strobelight, $10 (35) - Safety first! 
ASICS ‘GEL-NoosaFast 2’ Running Shoe, $100 (36) - AHH! Love these. 
Yogasmoga Tickle Me Tank, $72 (37) - Yogasmoga is getting rave reviews from blogs I’ve read. This tank comes in lots of different colors and looks really flattering. 

I’m really fascinated by the activewear industry. Where there used to be one or two luxury brands and the standard athletic labels (Nike, Adidas, etc.), now there are tons of new competitors. This is good news—I think Lululemon has had the corner on the higher-end activewear market for way too long. And frankly, I’m tired of the scarcity model. If you need a running shirt, you shouldn’t have to worry that you won’t be able to find it in your size because the company is making fewer pieces than demand requires. Now you can pick up high-quality technical pieces at Target while you buy your shampoo…or you can join several of the online monthly fitness clubs that have popped up and get great activewear at an affordable price. Retailers like Gap and Express offer promo codes so often that you can pick up their stuff at heavily discounted prices at least once a week. I tried to find a good mix of price points and brands and included a few accessories too—they’re easier to buy for someone else than clothes! 

  1. GapFit Breathe Long Sleeve Tee, $30 (1) - These are rapidly becoming a word-of-mouth must-have basic and although I don’t own this shirt yet, it’s on my list. 
  2. Under Armour Cozy Neck Shimmer, $60 (2) - Under Armour is looking to compete with Lululemon and has been designing some really great stuff this past year. 
  3. Fabletics “Capable”, $50 for VIP members (3) - I’ve been writing about Fabletics a lot lately, but I am SUPER impressed. The quality seems a touch better than Ellie and the newer designs—like this outfit—are really nice. I just ordered this. 
  4. Sweaty Bands Head Wrap, $15 (4) - So many people swear by these! Good stocking stuffer.
  5. Cory Vines Essential Long Sleeve Tee, $35 (5) - Cory Vines is a new-ish fitness store modeled similarly to Everlane. They don’t have a lot of product options, but the stuff they do have looks nice—and is priced just right. 
  6. Nordstrom Beyond Yoga Shawl Collar Jacket, $176 (6) - Love the shawl collar! 
  7. GapFit Distance Leggings, $65 (7) - This color is fun and I like the ankle zippers. 
  8. Nike Half Zip Running Shirt, $73.70 (from $110) (8) - Also available in pink. 
  9. Shashi Classic Cool Feet Grip Socks, $15 (9) - Cute socks for yoga or barre, etc. 
  10. Nike E2 Prime Performance Armband, $35 (10) - Also available in pink. 
  11. Express Core Strappy Tank, $39.90 (11) - Express has some new performance stuff that I like. This tank is great. 
  12. Target C9 by Champion Puffer Vest, $30 (12) - Such a good price! 
  13. Free People Floral Yoga Socks, $12 (13) - Another stocking idea. 
  14. Zella Live In Eclipse Space Dye Leggings, $58 (14) - Love these Zella leggings! They’re really comfortable and more fun than basic black for the gym. 
  15. Fitbit Flex, $99 (15) - Fitness trackers are a big gift this season. There are several different options, so do your homework, but I know a lot of friends that have Fitbit and like it. 
  16. Contigo AUTOSEAL 24-Ounce Water Bottle, $10.29 (16) - My favorite water bottle. I drink twice as much (at least) throughout the day when I keep this handy. 
  17. Active Apparel Tank Top, $27 (17) - HA! 
  18. Nike Air Max 2014 Running Shoe, $180 (18) - These new Nikes are pretty. 
  19. Fabletics “Spirited”, $60 with VIP membership (19) - Ordered this one too. Excited to try red leggings instead of black or gray for a change. 
  20. Athleta Tranquility Cowl Neck, $89 (20) - Perfect post-workout layer. 

  21. Lululemon Cool Racerback in Slalom Stripe, $42 (21) - Great basic tanks. You can wear them as an everyday layering piece too. 
  22. Athleta Polartec Power Stretch 2 Tights, $79 (22) - Running in the cold? These tights are fleece-lined. 
  23. Michi Cyclone Top, $195 (23) - This is a completely ridiculous price (and a somewhat ridiculous top), but on the right person? GOOD. 
  24. Trigger Point Performance The Grid Revolutionary Foam Roller, $39 (24) - Available in other colors. 

  25. Shop Something Blue Marathon Necklace, $44.50 (25) - This is Tumblr so I am confident you either ran a marathon this year or know someone that did. 
  26. Stella McCartney for adidas Gym Bag, $70 (from $100) (26) - I like that it can be worn crossbody. 
  27. Camelbak Eddy Glass Bottle, $20 (27) - Another water bottle option. 
  28. UP by Jawbone, $129 (28) - Another popular fitness tracker. 
  29. Target C9 by Champion Fleece Pullover, $19.60 (from $28) (29) - Available in 4 other colors. 
  30. Vitamix TurboBlend Two Speed, $373 (30) - Splurge! 
  31. YogaRat Sport Hand + Face Towel Set, $20 (31) - Again—for a stocking! 
  32. Garmin Forerunner 310XT Waterproof Running GPS With USB ANT Stick and Heart Rate Monitor, $186 (32) - Read good things about this. 
  33. Manduka Breathe, Bind & Align Package, about $130 (33) - The perfect gift for the yoga fan. 
  34. Lululemon Enlighten and Expand Tote, $68 (34) - I like this new gym bag from Lululemon and the price is surprising (in a good way). 
  35. Nathan Strobelight, $10 (35) - Safety first! 
  36. ASICS ‘GEL-NoosaFast 2’ Running Shoe, $100 (36) - AHH! Love these. 
  37. Yogasmoga Tickle Me Tank, $72 (37) - Yogasmoga is getting rave reviews from blogs I’ve read. This tank comes in lots of different colors and looks really flattering. 

ellagrace82 asked: You are amazing with all the fashion advice!! I'm a new mom, my daughter will be 4 months for Christmas. What are the best shops for kids clothes? And any great holiday dresses for infants? I'm not a huge fan of the super fancy poofy dresses I keep seeing for kids.. I like cute clothes, or mini-me clothes (think H&M for kids, I just wasn't seeing much at their store though). Thanks!!

I shop for Isobel at five places: Target, Baby Gap, Old Navy, H&M and ZARA. And you’re right! The pickings are slim at most of these places for holiday dresses. (I was just looking the other day.) The exception is ZARA, where I found several really good things. 

This checked dress is $40. PERFECT. This red dress is cute too and only $25. This knit dress is sweet ($35) and I’m dying over this red corduroy ($32). I’m a big fan of plaid so I like this one ($35) or you could go black and white ($25) for something a little different than the standard holiday look.