26 May 2012


I'm still not a huge fan of Vegas. This trip didn't change my opinion much. There's serious effort to keep you lost within a hotel so you can't spend your money in the other hotels. As a result, nothing is convenient. There is no walking in a straight line in that town.

But I was grateful for some much needed inspiration. I'm not a gambler. I'm not one to carry around a giant souvenir cocktail, but I do like to shop and take photos of things that inspire me. Thank goodness I married someone that enjoys the same (see him shooting the Louis Vuitton wall at Crystals, City Center). I Love, LOVE, loved Prada, of course, and Stella McCartney with her beautiful chandelier horse, "Lucky Spot". All Saints at Cosmopolitan Hotel was making me drool with the vintage sewing machines lining all of its window as well as the many patterns, textures, and spectacular lights all along the strip.

I also loved the variety of casino carpets. I found myself looking at the floor more and more, enjoying the color combinations and patterns. I thought, what a great book this would make... and guess what, someone else thought the same.


This was a once in a lifetime opportunity. And we knew it. We knew it when we got in the gold limo behind MGM. When we stepped onto the red carpet. When we saw the many guitars all lined up and ready for their performers. When Ty's publicist took us to our 8th row seats. When Brandi sat down next to us. When Mike Tyson and Tommy Hilfiger were within spitting distance. And when Ty led us to the side of the stage to watch Stevie Wonder sing.

We were so very fortunate and loving every minute of it. I was snapping photos with my phone like a fool, not even caring that none of them even look good. It was no surprise that my husband was blending into the crowd of "who's that?" with such success. Tommy Hilfiger kept staring at us, probably wondering "who's that?"

It was fun to see the performances even though I don't really have Bieber Fever or listen to Katy Perry. I gained a new respect for performers like Taylor Swift after hearing all of her amazing accomplishments. I was so proud of Ty for doing so well as a host with Julie Bowen. I had happy-tears in my eyes for the lucky singers that got to sing with Stevie Wonder and I was in awe of the many, many people backstage making the whole thing run so smoothly.

Once in a lifetime. Thanks Ty and Holly!

See real Billboards photos here.
Christine and I getting into the limo. Holly, Emily, Jeff and Duncan on our short ride to the red carpet. Tosh and I in the hotel suite and in the limo. The line up of guitars. Ty looking so very calm. Me, Christine, Emily and Jeff in Ty's room backstage.

Ty and Julie starting the Billbaord Awards. Jeff and Emily, Me and Tosh at our seats. Taylor Swift receiving her award. Julie and Ty on the overhead screen. Brandi looking absolutely stunning. Justin Bieber performing. Mike Tyson with Wiz Khalifa and Amber Rose. Stevie Wonder singing with Alicia Keys.

Backstage shots of Cee Lo and Stevie Wonder being interviewed. My husband Tosh beaming after Stevie said to him, "I love you too, man." After show parties at 1 Oak @ The Mirage and Lily @ Ballagio.

14 May 2012


After a bit of shopping (thanks mom for watching my kids!) I was able to narrow down to a couple of dresses. I was really surprised to find a colorful option. I think it's going to win out. And I love the shoes! Both will get much more use than the black set up, although the black dress is pretty spectacular too.

1. Alex & Ava Cowl Neck Jersey Dress $158.00 (Ginger). Cole Haan 'Air Vivian' Sandal $178.00 (Sequoia). Nordstrom Multi Row Bar Bangle $48.00 (Gold). Argento Vivo Triple Teardrop Earrings $68.00 (Gold).

2. Adrianna Papell Rosette Mixed Media Dress $178.00 (Black). Via Spiga 'Brook' Sandal $225.00 (Turquoise Patent). Kendra Scott 'Rafa' Rose Cuff $125.00 (Gold). Kendra Scott 'Elle' Small Oval Earrings $52.00 (Turquoise).


I'm not huge on Vegas, but my husband and I need a getaway. NOW. The last time the two of us got on a plane without kids was before we had kids. That was 4 1/2 years ago. Since then we've had two very appreciated one-nighters to Park City. We've gone to Portland with one kid and to Dallas with two kids. That's the extent of our travel. It always involved family and tended to be a bit stressful. Those were great outings, don't get me wrong, I liked those trips, but we're ready for a real vacation from our kids. It will be hard to leave our sweet girls for four whole days but at least Vegas is close-ish. It's also a bit of a "cheap" getaway. I had looked into San Diego. I want to save that for the kids. And Palm Springs. I want to save that for a sibling getaway.

So Vegas it is. I was starting to get excited about it. I never would've thought, excited about Vegas? But then... We got invited to the Billboards. That just kicked the meter up a few notches. We didn't think we would be able to swing it. Our original tickets out of town were the day before awards night. All hotels were booked because of the event. A return ticket would be as much as our original hotel and flight to Vegas. And the kicker was that who would watch our kids for 4 whole days? But somehow it all worked out and we get to go.

So now... a dress. Oh boy.

I must confess, I don't have a body that can just easily fit into any cocktail dress with ease. I have some areas to deal with. I've had two kids and my high metabolism that I grew up with sunk pretty low post 35. It's not going to be easy to find something for an event like this. Plus it's going to be 90+ degrees down there. Ugh. I'm going to need a girdle plus it will be hot... I may pass out.

Today, I go shopping... I feel a little like Julia Robers in Pretty Woman when she's so excited to go shopping and finds out that the experience sucks beyond belief. I have already started this process and after 8 dresses, I am a bit nervous. I can't leave this purchase to Vegas. If I don't find anything there, I'm bound to show up in my usual frumps. We're also sitting in a camera section so I need to try to find SOMETHING that doesn't embarrass myself and all I know. It's the new obsession.

Here are a few thoughts before I go: Needs sleeves but not too long. Can't be too short (like a shift dress). Not too fitted. Can't be stretchy material. Can't be see-through. Solids might be best. It would be a bonus if I could actually wear it for another occasion later. I'd love it if it were under $300.00 but I'll try not to think about that, there are too many other restrictions. But I can't forget shoes and accessories. Wish me luck.

08 May 2012


I couldn't decide. I knew I wanted to do something with one of the closets in my daughters room. She loves to hide so I thought a quiet spot with books might be nice. But she also loves to play dress up so where to put all of those things without making her room look junky? It was a project that my husband and I worked on together. There are two closets in her room so I reorganized to make everything she really needed fit into one, then we took off the closet doors and painted the interior of the other closet. My husband installed some track lighting and I started planning out the scene.

What I REALLY wanted was a sky scene with hot air balloons, blue skies and clouds. I also wanted a small dresser painted bright yellow, like the sun. So I started looking for wallpaper. I couldn't find anything that was fitting these ideas. I thought about painting it blue but I didn't like that with the existing coral wall color in her room so I left the walls white. Clearly, from the get go, I could see that this project wouldn't be complete right off. I made two hot air balloons and purchased one other (see "Hodgepodge"). I found a cloud shelf, and some cute flower hooks at Urban Outfitters. I had a cushion made and purchased a small nightstand and painted it yellow. I made a pillow with some Dandelions fabric by heidikenney that I had been admiring for a while on Spoonflower I found a used tin mirror and hot glued lots of colorful shiny bits all over it, (found around the house and at dollar stores). I purchased a ruffle curtain at Target and used a bathroom shower curtain rod to hang it. I got four bins from IKEA for storage.

My mother-in-law made a nurse hat and vest, and two superhero capes. I found construction vests at IKEA and lots of costume items on sale after the Halloween season at Target and Savers.

Things left to accomplish: I still want to find a wallpaper or do something to the back wall, and possibly the left wall behind the cloud shelf so that it's not white on white. I also would like to get a flokati rug for under the cushion and add some fringe to the pillow. 

Although I have things in mind to make this closet better, for now it's a huge success with my kids and their friends that come over to play. It's also really easy to put everything away so it doesn't get overly messy. That was important to me. That's also why I like having a few baskets high up and a dresser with an area for hats, shoes and a drawer for jewelry. It all worked out somehow.

07 May 2012


I've wanted to make these for quite some time. We've got tons of Vintage Fisher Price Little People, which are called "peoples" in our house, and these little bitties can play along too. A cute tutorial for making them with kids is here. It makes for a fun crafternoon even with my littlest one.
You Need:
Wooden dolls (available at craft stores like Hobby Lobby or here in a variety of sizes)
Pens (Colors for eyes and mouth)
Brush and Paints (Colors for hair and clothing)
Clothing Materials (Fabric. Lace. Felt. Stickers. Ribbon. Sparkle Bits)
Fabric Scissors
Hot Glue

1. Have your kids draw eyes and a mouth (or no mouth) on the ball of the peg.
2. Have them paint the hair (let dry). I did one and they followed quite well. 
3. Have them paint the body clothes from the neck down (let dry).
4. They choose the fabrics and trimmings.
5. I cut out skirts, dresses and pants and hot glue them on.

They love being a part of making their own peoples and playing with them. They're a hit.

02 May 2012


As promised, I'd like to offer up my humble review of Pallet, a new restaurant in Salt Lake City. I found out about it while looking for wallpaper for my sister-in-law's home. I really love the wallpaper they chose for their men's restroom. It's a black on black damask. Cody Derrick of City Home Collective was good enough to help me out with the source. We ended up using that wallpaper in a gameroom and LOVE it.

A few friends had experienced Pallet before I was able to get there, but we all had similar thoughts. Beautiful, dark and lively atmosphere (I love the enormous mirror behind the bar), with a menu that needs some tweeking. Priced as if it has been around and favored by many. My husbands opinion was quite low, but I'd like to see how they do over time. Perhaps a chef that could offer up flavors that are worth the price. I had the scallops, my husband had the buffalo ribs which he said was, "the worst cut of meat" he'd ever had. I liked my meal, and our friends both enjoyed theirs. I enjoyed our evening there but I think we'll wait awhile before returning to see if some kinks get worked out.

Around the corner, I came across a fabric store that I never knew was there. Tissu Fine Fabrics & Design Gallery. Pierpont is home to several cute little shops, some stick around, others come and go. I don't know how long this has been there, but I fell in love with some fabric in the window. It's the kind of fabric that makes me nervous though. I want to make something with it, but I'd buy it, and it would sit in a bag until I could muster up the courage to start a project. Possibly a table cloth for Mother's Day.