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A Garden Party to Celebrate (And Say Good-Bye)

indoor garden decor

This weekend’s party was beautiful to look at, but even more beautiful to be at.

You know, ever since I was a little girl I’ve gotten a bit teary every time a party comes to a close: once the food is eaten and the drinks are drunk and the candles are burning down and everyone’s gone and it’s just me and Kendrick puttering around, picking up discarded glasses and plates and wiping down countertops and floors, I look around and think wait.

Come back.

I miss you.

And Sunday’s garden party at our place – the last party we’ll ever throw here – made me feel like that maybe more than any party I’ve ever had, because it was a celebration of spring…but it was also a goodbye of sorts to the friends who have made up our little East Coast family these past few years. I know we’ll be back, and I know that these people who I love so much will stay a part of our lives, but still:

I miss them. Already.

But it was such a special way to welcome the first beautiful day of the year and to begin our last few weeks in our home: the sun came out (finally), the house was filled with flowers from floor to ceiling, the kids fought dragons in the yard, and I laughed so hard that I cried…even while the party was still in swing.

Since the East Coast weather is still a little questionable this time of year, I brought the outdoors inside and transformed our living room into a beautiful garden inspired by Aromatherapeutic Living brand, Caldrea. The theme of the party centered on my favorite Caldrea scent, Basil Blue Sage.

spring party decor

The Scent

I filled the house with Basil Blue Sage candles – a fresh, elegant scent with basil, sage, thyme and spearmint – so it smelled incredible. (This scent, incidentally, is perrrfect for spring – it’s just exactly what you want your house to smell like when you finally throw open your windows and let the warm air in.) I set the candles on candlesticks of various heights throughout the lower floor of our house, put one in each bathroom, and then gave each of the other rooms in the house a quick spritz with linen spray before our guests arrived.

pesto mozzarella appetizer

The Food

Since it was an afternoon party, I kept the food light: toasted country bread topped with mozzarella, pesto, peas and mint (recipe coming up later this week!), and then white buttercream cupcakes with gold sugar beads and faux sage leaves for dessert.

white wine spritzer

The Drinks 

I wanted to serve a classic, easy, light drink, so I made white wine spritzers and threw a couple of frozen melon balls and a sage leaf into each drink to add some light flavor and color.

diy terrarium decor moss

The Décor

Oh, this was such a fun party to decorate for. You know how I’m always going on about inspiration boards and how much they can help you a) figure out the look you’re going for and b) save you tons of money and time? I’m certain you think I’ve been lying and don’t actually make them myself…but…


Garden Party Inspiration Board

Ta daaaaaa.

I knew I wanted the décor to be white, sage green and gold with hints of grey-blue, in the spirit of the Basil Blue Sage fragrance, and so I imported the items I already had (a striped futon, garden chairs, gold side tables) into Polyvore and started loading in images of other items that I thought would be pretty. When I arrived at a look that I liked, all I had to do was pick up the pieces I needed (and twenty thousand flowers) and: done.

Additional elements:

– Handmade terrariums that I filled with moss and flowers and used to display my favorite Caldrea products (with silver frames showcasing the product names set nearby);

– Moss carpets dotted with white, green and gold decorative pieces set atop every flat surface I could find;

– Green leaf garlands handmade by my friend Erin;

– Mismatched blue vases filled with green hydrangeas, pale-pink berry branches, purple delphiniums and grass;

– Additional potted greenery everywhere.

– An Astroturf rug. Because while spring has sprung, it has not yet sprung that much. And so: the fake (and yet also very pretty) stuff it was.

caldrea 18

The Gifts

Every guest went home with a bucket filled with Caldrea products (a candle, dish soap, hand soap, and hand lotion). Indy helped me put them together (really; it was the first time he’s for-real helped me as opposed to “helping mommy”; a.k.a. “making mommy’s life significantly more difficult while ‘helping’”).

garden party invitationshih tzu flowerspink silk dresswhite buddhacaldrea 9spring party decorspring garden partycolder garden partywhite futon covercaldrea basil blue sagegarden party what to wear

To learn more about this scent and other new releases from Caldrea, head over to their blog; it’s truly stunning and a must-see, with aperitifs, tables cape ideas and more inspired by the different virtual “gardens” that you can unlock.

Caldrea is a sponsor of Ramshackle Glam; as always, my opinions remain my own.

Major Restorative Moment: The New Nexxus Salon in TriBeCa

nexxus new york salon

Talk about a not-terrible way to spend an evening.

You may have noticed I’m a little hair-obsessed lately; I just love this new cut so much, and am especially excited about the fact that (so far, at least) it appears that if I keep my hair healthy I don’t really have to do a whole lot to it on a day-to-day basis (which is AWESOME, because hello: no time). So when given the opportunity to take a little field trip down to the Nexxus Salon in TriBeCa for a restorative hair treatment and styling…I mean:



But it was even better than you’d think. Some of the many reasons why:

nexxus salon

love these women.

1. I got to hang out and drink champagne with a few of my closest colleagues – including Christine from MyStylePill, Amber from Rouge18 (not pictured), and Jeannine from BeautySweetSpot, and all these women are just so smart, and supportive of one another, and great to be around. Heart.

nexxus salon treatment

here i am in a salon…in what amounts to a bed. it was amazing.

2. You know how when you go to most salons and sit down at the hair-washing station you end up leaning your head back so far you’re basically upside down, and it’s all very uncomfortable and muscle-twisting and not-especially-relaxing? These hair-washing stations were basically beds. I continue to be amazed that I’m not still laying in one asleep three days later.

Every salon should have beds.

nexxus new york salon


3. After an Emergencée Restorative Strength Conditioning Treatment (which I was advised should be applied prior to coloring one’s hair to alleviate damage from bleaching; good to know, because I think I have some Big Big Blonde in my future), I got a seriously cute, tousle-y blowout from none other than Nexxus Creative Director Kevin Mancuso.

nexxus diametress

hello volume.

4. And finally, I discovered a product line that is so great that I need to tell you all about it: the Nexxus Diametress Volumizing System, which the stylist used on my hair, and which left me with volume for DAYS.

The short story: you’ve heard of Nexxus, of course – they’re the haircare brand focused on holistic hair restoration, and so for their first New York City salon they created a pure-white, oasis-like space dedicated to bringing that attention to hair health to in-salon treatments. It’s bright, it’s calm, it’s beautiful, and you leave with hair that looks gorgeous and feels amazing.

nexxus salon new york

On Me: Persifor “Haist” Dress; Nine West Heels.

It’s also unlike any salon experience I’ve ever had, because it’s not all that different from going to a doctor’s office (except obviously about ten zillion times more fun, because we’re dealing with hair): You and your stylist use an extremely cool interactive mirror (pictured above) to determine exactly what your specific hair needs are, then you receive treatments and product recommendations tailored just for you – and all of your information is stored in the mirror to track your process on an ongoing basis. (I learned, for example, that I have fine hair but quite a lot of it, and that I should be using oil-based products rather than silicone-based ones, which may weigh my hair down.)

It’s definitely worth a trip – and I’ll definitely be back. Big Big Blonde, here I come.

Check out the menu of treatments available here.

This post was created in collaboration with Cosmopolitan Magazine.

The Perfect Tank Tops For All Your Everythings

summer surfer girl style

It’s comiiiing!


(I’m talking about summer, if that wasn’t clear.)

OK, so I may talk a lot about how I fantasize about wearing this or that or the other thing (sequin dresses! neon heels! fringe jackets!)…but what I actually wear from the moment I can until the moment I can’t is:


Tank top.


I think you probably do, too.

So: let’s look at some absolutely perfect tank tops, because now is a good time to get to stocking up. (Oh, and you know what? This is one of those purchases that I’m okay with spending a little extra on if you come across the exact perfect shape – because kind of like jeans, if you find The One, you’ll wear it everywhere, to everything, all the time, bringing that all-important price-per-wear equation all the way down to Chinatown.)

(Still More) Experiments In Random Home Movie-Making

This one includes sad lingerie stories, outtakes from Mommalogues segments, seriously the most pathetic purchase you have ever seen, and an actual horror movie that took place in our living room.


Experiments In Random Home-Movie Making

Just All Sorts Of Mildly-To-Very Embarrassing Things Here

Blank Spaces

move piano across country

We’re about halfway packed – my strategy is to do at least a couple of boxes every day – and about five weeks from the date of our departure (officially May 21st), and the house is starting to fill up with emptiness.

It’s hard, watching these rooms that I put together so carefully – and loved so much – get broken down. Dust from the endless boxes getting dragged up from the basement is settling into the cracks along the sideboards; all the photos are wrapped up in plastic; we’re eating meals off of the same four dishes every day, because they’re the only ones left that I haven’t packed. With each passing day, our house feels less like “our house,” and more like a place we’re staying in for the time being, before moving on to the next thing.

And not knowing what that “next thing” is – because we still don’t* – makes it harder to let go of what we do know.

planting tree

There’s a tree in our yard that we planted a few months after we moved in; they were giving out little baby white pines at my grocery store, and I was so struck by how charming it was to suddenly be living in a place where trees get handed out in grocery stores (and also to be living in a place where I could go home and actually plant that tree in my own yard) that I ran home, got my husband and son and a gardening spade, and into the ground it went. The tree is bigger now; maybe a foot and a half tall, with tiny, bright-green little branches at the very top just starting to unfurl now that the warm weather is here.

I looked at that tree yesterday, and thought about how we planted it in that particular spot in our garden because there was nothing around it, and because I had this fantasy that decades from now it would be taller than the house, and we’d be able to hang a tire swing on it for our grandchildren to play on.

I knew we’d leave this house much sooner than that, of course; I knew we’d have to.

But still.

I want to take that tree with me wherever I go. It’s rooted here, and so I can’t…

But I just wish I could. That’s all.


pack house for move

*P.S. A quick house-search update, for those who are curious: over the weekend we put in a bid on another house, going in with a starting offer slightly over the asking price because there were no other bids on the house and that felt like a fair – even generous – offer, and learned the next day that the owners were upset by the offer because they had be expecting an offer of 100K over the asking price. They wanted one hundred thousand dollars over the price they had asked for. And this was something that we were supposed to know…psychically? So my suggestion to them would be a) “Try not to be horrified when people offer you more than what you asked for,” and b) “If you want more, maybe…ask for it. In the place where you ask. It’s called ‘the asking price.'”

Also I found a rental we really liked, and TWO HUNDRED AND FIFTY PEOPLE had requested applications.

Two hundred. And fifty. People.

For a rental that had been on the market for less than a week.


But hey: new houses come on the market every day, and I’m looking both at places to buy and places to rent. And if we don’t find anywhere that we love by the beginning of May, I have a month-to-month rental secured that has a pool in it, so there you go: happy summer ahead.

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