Favorite Moments of 2014

A full week of 2015 has already gone, but I’m not yet ready to dim the lights on the year to which we just kissed good-bye. Not that we want to live in the past, but year 2014 brought us some unforgettable characters and events, so let’s reflect on them one last time, courtesy of my beautiful young friend, Whitney, who knows everything cool and that it’s good to remember things.

lipniski-weirSource

  1. Tara Lipinski and Johnny Weir at the Sochi Olympics

2014’s winter Olympics saw plenty of heart-warming athletic triumphs, like U.S.’s first gold medal in ice dancing. But Sochi will also be remembered as the first pairing of former Olympians Tara Lipinski and Johnny Weir. They joined forces as well-dressed figure skating commentators and became a must-watch part of Olympic coverage. Awesome or awesomely bad. Whichever.

  1. Jay Leno Passes the Tonight Show Baton to Jimmy Fallon

After more than 20 years as the host of The Tonight Show, Jay Leno permanently stepped off stage in 2014. Former SNL cast member and Late Night host Jimmy Fallon took his place, bringing his immediately viral skits and hilarious games to the NBC staple. Fallon’s unique spin on Tonight is … >> find out more...

Kimberly

...by day, making a home where the buffalo roam. By night, pretty much the same thing, punctuated by the occasional fantasies of sunny beaches, italian movies and sparkling lemonade.

Cumberbatch Babies

There were actual squeals of joy and rows of exclamation points and proclamations of a state of emergency and frantic text messages when I heard the news today that my favorite, Benedict Cumberbatch is going to become a daddy.

benedict cumberbatch

Breuel-Bild/USA/dpa/Corbis

Indeed, Mr. Benedict Cumberbatch and his gorgeous fiancee Sophie Hunter are expecting a baby this year! Bring on the Cumber-babies!  It’s no secret that Benedict Cumberbatch is beloved around here.  For several valid heart-throbby reasons. His elegant gait, his public desire to marry and have children, his deliciously silky voice and ever-dreamy accent, his old fashioned manners (the engagement announcement was very classy), his graciousness and charm during interviews and fan maulings, the way he wears a suit and tie, and of course his formidable talent all add up to one big, mad, juicy celeb-crush. I confess: his photo is the wallpaper on my phone. It’s true. He’s our favorite topic of conversation around here. And those conversations never ever include highly romantic overtones. Wink.

benedict cumberbatch

James Higgins/Splash News

We are tremendously happy for Mr. Cumberbatch and his lovely bride-to-be Miss. Hunter. She’s quite beautiful–those eyes, the cheekbones, the posture and grace. And those gowns—she has great taste.  Well, obviously, and … >> find out more...

Kimberly

...by day, making a home where the buffalo roam. By night, pretty much the same thing, punctuated by the occasional fantasies of sunny beaches, italian movies and sparkling lemonade.

Five Reasons to Love Snowshoeing

SnowshoestitleSnowshoeing is saving my life. And probably my marriage. And my family.  And my sanity. Well, all that is probably a bit of an exaggeration, but it is 100% true that it’s made my life much better for 6 months of the year.

It’s like this. 7 1/2 years ago we left our cute little home in the Salt Lake Valley for another cute little home in the Snake Rive Plain. I loved all kinds of things about our previous home and life and city, but was ready for this new adventure and trusted my husband’s promises that the new place would be almost exactly the same, just smaller and slightly colder in the winter. Slightly.

That turned out to be rather an understatement. Our first winter in Idaho hit hard, and stayed grey and bitter cold for a very very long time. I was ill-equipped to cope with the biting sub-zero temperatures every single day and the accompanying wind. Icy stinging wind.  I shivered and cried for 6 months. That’s how long winter lasts here.

snowshoeing2Fast forward to my realization that I needed a way to enjoy winter. Something, somehow, to look forward to. Skiing wasn’t an option–too expensive, … >> find out more...

Kimberly

...by day, making a home where the buffalo roam. By night, pretty much the same thing, punctuated by the occasional fantasies of sunny beaches, italian movies and sparkling lemonade.

6 Gorgeous Printable 2015 Calendars

Time for a 2015 calendar, because it’s almost here! The new year! 2015! If one of your goals is to be more organized, may I suggest starting with a pretty 2015 calendar? I use my smart phone calendar for some things, but I’m still a bit old fashioned and like to write things down and see them all at a glance without my trusty smartphone. I’m talking about using a nice paper 2015 calendar for jotting down all of your to-dos and special dates to remember. For free! Here is a little selection of very lovely free printable 2015 calendars you can download right this minute, all courtesy of talented  designers across the interwebs. Enjoy! Free_Printable_Calendar_2015_Long(2)

1. I like the black and white color scheme and darling chalkboard look of this calendar by Botanical Paperworks

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2. Understated and elegant, and more of that awesome black and white, whether you place it on your desk or your fridge or your pin board, or in a notebook, from Chantel Emma

calendardownload3. Seriously cute designs here, like that wood grain! From Mad About Pink

misstiina_colorful2015cal

4. Bright and fresh calendar from Miss Tiina

2015 Printable Calendar

5. Gold dots? Or maybe turquoise? Say no more! By Oh So >> find out more...

Kimberly

...by day, making a home where the buffalo roam. By night, pretty much the same thing, punctuated by the occasional fantasies of sunny beaches, italian movies and sparkling lemonade.

When Life Gets Wild

“I didn’t know where I was going until I got there.”  –Cheryl Strayed

Wild Movie PosterI saw the movie Wild this weekend, and I’ve been contemplating my life and my relationships and searching my soul ever since.

2014 has been a little rough. At least for me. There have been plenty of high points and I’ve experienced lots of joy, too, but there was a lot of tough stuff happening in my life this past year. The cry until you collapse, ache until you implode kinds of things. I know you know what I mean. We all have that hard, dark, heavy stuff, the kind that sometimes forces us into a better place. Often we don’t see it that way until much later, after the rocky road is behind us, until, whether prepared for it or not, we journey through some sort of cathartic experience, and realize the grit and heart and promise that’s been inside us all along. Perhaps a bit battle-scarred, but healed and whole once again.Wil Movie Lake

With that in mind, I connected with Wild from Fox Searchlight. Reese Witherspoon (one of my favorites) portrays Cheryl, at the proverbial rock bottom after a series of devastating events and self destructive … >> find out more...

Kimberly

...by day, making a home where the buffalo roam. By night, pretty much the same thing, punctuated by the occasional fantasies of sunny beaches, italian movies and sparkling lemonade.

Makeup in under 5 minutes!

Have you ever overslept and needed to get ready in a hurry? All you need is this 5 minute makeup tutorial to give you a beautiful, natural glow.

Have you ever overslept and needed to get ready in a hurry? All you need is this 5 minute makeup tutorial to give you a beautiful, natural glow.

•Mac foundation brush: number 128 $ 40.00  •Liquid foundation: $ 25.00 • Concealer: $25.00 •Prep & Prime mascara $ 17.00 •Mascara: $ 20.00 •Brush cleaner $ 15.00

• Mac foundation brush: number 128 $ 40.00
• Liquid foundation: $ 25.00
• Concealer: $25.00
• Prep & Prime mascara $ 17.00
• Mascara: $ 20.00
• Brush cleaner $ 15.00

First step: I take my mac brush and mac foundation.

First step: I take my mac brush and mac foundation.

Second: take the liquid foundation and dab a medium sized amount (start with a small amount, and if you need more, simply add more) on the back of your hand

Second: take the liquid foundation and dab a medium sized amount (start with a small amount, and if you need more, simply add more) on the back of your hand

   The reason I do this is so I won’t spread bactria and dirt that may be on my hand. Using a brush also helps to keep your face clear, by preventing the oils found on your hands from clogging the pores on your face.

The reason I do this is so I won’t spread bacteria and dirt that may be on my hand. Using a brush also helps to keep your face clear, by preventing the oils found on your hands from clogging the pores on your face.

Third: start spreading the foundation in a circular motion, on and all around your face, the circular motion helps spread the foundation evenly and prevents it from being too thick.

Third: start spreading the foundation in a circular motion, on and all around your face, the circular motion helps spread the foundation evenly and prevents it from being too thick.

Continue in a circular motion.

Continue in a circular motion.

Continue.

Continue.

 Fourth: Take the concealer (I like to go about 3-4 shades darker than my foundation color).


Fourth: Take the concealer (I like to go about 3-4 shades darker than my foundation color).

Suck in your cheeks (like a fishy or kissy face) and apply the concelar right underneath the cheek bone.

Suck in your cheeks

>> find out more...

abanks

Making Life Easier One Blow Dryer At A Time

A few months after my first baby was born I thought I needed a change and proceeded to chop 15 inches off my hair length. FIFTEEN INCHES. That’s like mid-life crisis level action there, CODE RED! It took me close to three years to grow back out and I swore I’d never make a drastic chop like that again. So here I am, 6 years, two more babies, and a mess of hair later. There are many many days where I feel like chopping it off again for the simple purpose of making my life easier because this much hair takes a generous amount of time to style, and mama ain’t got a ton of that to spare. But then I remember the growing out process and that chop chop urge goes right out the window.

To compensate, I look for any way I can to simplify my hair routine. I rely heavily on dry shampoo to get me through the days I don’t wash my hair for the simple reason that it can take me close to a half an hour to dry my hair on the days I do wash it. 30 minutes with a blow dryer is … >> find out more...

Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

6 Favorite Christmas Books to Read Now

Christmas Book CollectionWhen my husband and I were newlyweds, we started acquiring Christmas books, children’s books, mostly. We add a new one to the stash each year or so, and when the tree trimmings come out of storage, so do the books! I’ve read that some families wrap their Christmas books in festive paper and open one each night in December leading up to Christmas, but we prefer to put our collection out in a basket so all the books can be enjoyed all month long by the whole family. Less tape that way.

The classics are all there of course–the Grinch, the Polar Express and ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas–but I’d love to share some of our other favorites with you today, in no particular order, for kids from one to ninety-two.

Christmas Books

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

We have 3 versions of this book, actually, because it’s that dear to my husband and my little boys. We’ve shared the original and the children’s version with them with equal success. It’s definitely worth an annual read. Note: my kids also love the old radio dramatization featuring Lionel Barrymore.

Christmas Day in the Morning by Pearl S. Buck

This story is simple … >> find out more...

Kimberly

...by day, making a home where the buffalo roam. By night, pretty much the same thing, punctuated by the occasional fantasies of sunny beaches, italian movies and sparkling lemonade.

My Favorite Holiday Flicks

Let’s be honest, binge watching all my favorite holiday movies is pretty much the best tradition ever.  A tradition that requires zero effort other then plopping down on the couch, or my bed if I please, tuning up ye olde dvd player and settling in for the night. I am all about the minimal effort when it comes to the holidays and I’d be lying if I said I hadn’t participated in this tradition several times already. Some people hit the mall this time of year, some people hit the couch. I’m team couch, the mall is way too crowded.

christmas movies

‘Tis the season.

So, you know, because I love you I think it’s time we talk about my top 5 favorite holiday flicks. I’m hoping you’ve seen most, if not all, of these so that we have that much in common. If not, add them to your list and return so we can discuss. Movie time!

 

white christmas

*image via Movie Gazette

White Christmas – Danny Kaye, Bing Crosby, Rosemary freakin’ Clooney, and of course… Vera-Ellen’s legs. It’s just my favorite. I sing all the songs and wish I could dance all the dances, and of course I cry when they … >> find out more...

Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!