Book Wish List For 2013

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My eBay Collections were curated as part of my collaboration with eBay.

wish list 2013

2013 is drawing to a close (thank the heavens above) but you still have time to get in a few good reads before the new year.  In fact, I have it on good authority that you’ve been a good boy / girl this year, and if you ask nicely St. Nick might give you a good book for Christmas (or whichever wonderful holiday you celebrate).  See, I have Santa’s cell phone number + email address, and I’m making daily reports of good (and bad) behavior.  As far as my children know, they’re basically on parole until Christmas day.  I’m the parole officer, and the check-ins are hourly instead of monthly.

Same goes for you guys.  I have Santa spies everywhere.

I do!. Sort of. Not really.

But even if you were naughty, I’d still give you good book recommendations because nothing turns someone from the dark side quite like a good book. Stepping into someone else’s shoes (metaphorically, at least) for a little while, can really give a girl (or guy) some perspective on life.  You might even get out of your parole officer visits early … >> find out more…

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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!

Be The Solution To End Fat Talk NOW

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teenager

Fat talk is something 93 percent of women engage in, every day.  NINETY-THREE percent of us are talking about how we wish we could just lose those extra 15 pounds, how we don’t fit in our skinny jeans anymore, about how our necks are drooping (maybe that’s my own personal demon).  Lots of us make belittling comments about ourselves under our breath:

I look so fat in this.

Ug! I’m so disgusting!’ ‘

I used to have an amazing rack but now I’m so saggy.  I want a boob job.’

Take stock and think about it: how often do you make negative body image remarks to yourself or others.  If you’re thinking it, you’re emulating it, so that counts too.  But guess what?  It doesn’t have to be that way, and you and I are going to be the solution to end fat talk NOW.

Like, right now.

set an example

I engaged in all sorts of self loathing in high school.  From terrible comments about my: (fill in the blank)  _________ , to a self destructive eating disorder and negative self talk (the stuff you keep inside your own brain).

But as I left high … >> find out more…

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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!

5 Short Party Dresses For The Holidays

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holiday dresses
It’s party season, wahoo!  Aren’t you so excited?  For all the party-town, fancy-dancy parties of the season?  I’m not much of a cocktail party goer, but I love the idea of dressing other people for the holidays.  I’m more of a sweats + heating blanket + Benedict Cumberbatch (movies) on the couch kind of girl.  With some hot chai tea in hand, of course.

 

But YOU, you are a fancy party-goer!  And I have 5 short party dresses for the holidays just for you; because I love you.  I want you to be the best dressed girl at the big bash (whatever that might be) between now and January whatever.

 

LOOK #1

The hemline of this party dress is short and the feel is vintage, but the accessories are totally modern.  Ready for a mature lady and her trademark legs.

 

cocktail dress

LOOK #2

Ice Queen, in silver and black with perfect winter accessories including a crown (!) statement ring.  This queen is ready to party.

 

short party dress

LOOK #3

A twenty-something city girl with a tutu hemline and chic accessories from the golden chandelier earrings and black + gold statement ring all the way down to the black bootie

>> find out more…

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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!

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Tasty Peanut Butter Chocolate Pie

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delicious peanut butter chocolate pie
peanut butter chocolate pie

Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie: are there 4 more beautiful words in the English language?  I think not.

I’d just be happy with a chocolate pie normally, but when you add peanut butter my brain explodes.  In a happy way.  In the best way possible.  So imagine then, if you will, what happens to my brain when you take chocolate, peanut butter, and add some cream cheese to the mix.

WHAT. IS. HAPPENING?

My-body-is-no-longer-a-wonderland, is what is happening.

baking

A few years ago (probably more like 13 or 14) my husband’s best friend was in college in a town next door to the one my husband and I were living in as somewhat-newlyweds with our brand new baby girl.  The friend, we’ll call him Elko, used to come over to borrow kitchen supplies for random things, and pretty soon he borrowed a rolling pin, for an extended period of time.  What does a young twenty-something college guy need with a rolling pin?  Well, it turns out he was having weekly pie nights with roommates, friends, and family.  Everyone gathered together once a week at Elko’s apartment with ingredients, pie tins, and utensils for their own pies; they all hung out, made … >> find out more…

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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!

Teenage Gift Lists and Ideas for You

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You need some gift lists + ideas for teenagers? I can help. Thanks to eBay for sponsoring this curation of gift ideas for tricky, lovable teens.  Check out my ever-growing collections for more ideas on gift giving, I have many, gift ideas and collections, I mean.

teenage gift lists and ideas

If you’ve ever been in charge of shopping for a teenager you understand the plight that is finding the right gift.  See, it’s different for teenagers, because they’re more like toddlers than not during the teen years, and it can get ugly if you don’t get things juuuuust so.  I say this as the mother of a teen and someone who WAS a teen for several years of my life.  The emotions, they are everywhere.  So many hormones, so many feeeeeeelings all. of. the. time. and no one does anything right.  It’s genuinely a hard time of life but that doesn’t mean you can’t try to get it right, and I’m always here to help; in fact I sourced my own teen to get some gift ideas so not ALL of you will be hated at your family holiday parties.

Teenage Gift Lists and Ideas for You

(so as not to lose >> find out more…

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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!

Fall Fashion In Real World Conditions

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tracy reese fashion

 

I keep it real around here, if for no other reason than I *am* real and I can’t pretend to live a magazine life when I currently have 3 loads of unfolded laundry currently sitting in cube form, blocking everything in their path, in laundry baskets in my master bathroom.  I have no qualms about showing you the state of my very real, very messy laundry room in the midst of the everyday madness of raising two children in the very real world.  Frankly, it’s impossible for me not to keep it real, I’d be lying through my teeth if I told you I had it all together all of the time.

 

fall fashion 2014

 

So I’m super excited to tell you about something very cool Tide Pods is doing to help those of us who happen to love high fashion, but live in the real world, where dry cleaning isn’t (much) a part of daily life.  Tide has been working on a super cool formula for the laundry room, so you can have your high fashion and wash it too.  At home, in your real life.  In fact, they’re so serious about this … >> find out more…

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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!

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Snow Ahead For Days And Wow!

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Big thanks to Maui Jim for sponsoring this giveaway.

THIS GIVEAWAY IS CLOSED. CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR WINNER, JAMIE, COMMENT #6

maui jim sunglasses

Wow it’s snowy out in my neck of the woods.  Snowy, cold and very, very wintery.  I’d give anything to be on a beach somewhere but since I’m not, I’m going to enjoy the weather I have and burrow in for the winter.  Instead of dreaming of surfing somewhere (I wouldn’t dare!) I’m going to light a fire tonight.  We’re going to have soup for dinner and hot tea afterwards in front of the fireplace while I nestle in with a good book.

Do you have certain books you read and movies you watch when it’s cold outside?  I tend to watch almost exclusively BBC shows once we’ve packed up Fall and head into December: Sherlock (OBVS), Pride + Prejudice (Colin Firth version, of course), Upstairs Downstairs, you name it.  As long as there’s a BBC stamp in the corner I’m usually game.  I end up using words like ‘posh’ and ‘marvelous’ and phrases like ‘ that’s rather daring’ and ‘we mustn’t!’.  I wish I were joking, but I can totally understand why Madonna and good old Gwennie end up … >> find out more…

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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!

Dry Skin Rescue Facial Homemade DIY

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avocado face mask

It’s DIY facial time.  A little *me* time for you, because you’re worth it.  Your skin is dry, it’s acting up and behaving like a small, angry child and there’s only so much you can take before you want to break up.  For realsies this time.  Because you deserve better.  You deserve a glowing face with nary a flake of dry skin in sight.  So here’s what you’re going to do about it: you’re going to make a homemade DIY facial with ingredients from the kitchen, and when you’re all done your face will be as smooth as a baby’s bottom.

Let’s get started, shall we?

Dry Skin Rescue Facial Homemade DIY

  • 1/2 of an avocado
  • 1/4 cup honey

DIY honey facial

First of all let’s set the stage.  Put on your bathrobe and start up some spa music.  If you have children, make them leave the room.  If you can’t do that do the next best thing: put on some headphones with Enya or some other calming music, for me right now that would be Bastille.  I won’t judge you if your spa music is Metallica, we all have our own things.

Next, let’s talk ingredients.  It wouldn’t be DIY without … >> find out more…

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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!

I really want a personalized bed with photos

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A bed used to be a place for sleeping.  A boring white + blue striped mattress, covered with a sheet and maybe a nice down comforter (if you were lucky).  I never take a good bed for granted but my kids don’t know the difference.  I’ve spoiled them by not making them sleep on fold-up camping cots or 3 to a bed, stitch, like I did from time to time growing up in a family with 8 kids.  So imagine then how I felt when I discovered there’s such a thing as a personalized bed, a bed so personalized you can get photos of whatever you please as light panels on the headboard.  Can you even imagine?

I clearly cannot.

personal bed

 

My childhood self wouldn’t have even known where to start with such an unbelievable future creation.  What pictures would I choose for the headboard?  Princess Leia?  No! My Little Pony! No, too girly! I loved G.I. Joe so much I used to sneak into my brother’s bedroom to play with Joe and all his army buddies, maybe I could find a photo of ol’ Joe for my room!  I know, I know, She-Ra from Masters of the Universe!  A … >> find out more…

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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!