December 20, 2013

Decorating Myself and Three Trees – Happy Holidays!

As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, the last few weeks have been exhausting – and it is so nice that tonight I had no plans and am able to stay home in my own little bed and catch up on things! (Okay, so maybe I did have plans and canceled them… sometimes I need a break.)

But don’t feel too sorry for me – while I haven’t been getting enough sleep lately, it’s been for a lot of wonderful reasons. The first weekend I stayed in Dallas, it was to attend my company’s Dallas office holiday party. The attire is black tie optional, and while I went in a cocktail dress last year, this year I decided to go all-out in a full-length gown. To get even further glammed up, my friend Blake and I went to get blowouts at Drybar Dallas and then have our makeup done at Blushington next door.

Blushington Makeup
I loved the results! Can someone teach me how to do my own makeup like this? Or maybe even just help find me the perfect color of red lip stain?
Ladies At Holiday Party
Beth and I both happened to wear red dresses, and so made perfect bookends for Blake, who looked stunning in gold sequins.

Last year’s event was the first time I had ever gone to have my hair and makeup done, but this year, I was so thrilled with the results that I have now become kind of an addict… so although Blake’s own holiday party last weekend wasn’t black tie or anything super duper fancy, I decided to go get my hair and makeup done again. This time around, I checked out Pouf, which was offering a really great deal as part of their “twelve days of Christmas” special: buy a blowout (for a regular low price of $35) and get a “just eyes” makeup job for free! That was a fraction of the price I had paid the week before, so I was really eager to check it out.

At first, I wasn’t as happy with how Pouf did. My hair looked kind of poodle-ish and silly when I left (too many small curls that looked limp rather than a few larger curls), and the makeup guy seemed to not be nearly as much of an expert as the wonderful girl at Blushington. I gave both makeup artists the same admittedly-vague direction (some sort of smoky eye, whatever you think would look best!), but I think the guy at Pouf took that freedom as a chance to do something bigger/more elaborate than he bargained for – and there was a lot of retouching and reworking of the eye makeup, which took forever. While my appointment was supposed to finish at 7:10pm (with Blake’s party being a 5 minute drive away and starting at 7:30pm), I didn’t actually finish and get to leave until 7:40pm! I really, really, really hate being late, and was especially mortified that my dress was upstairs in Blake’s guest bedroom (since I had been planning to get there before the party started) – which meant that I had to arrive at a cocktail party that was well underway while wearing jeans and a fleece jacket, scrambling upstairs in hopes that as few people as possible would see me. Ugh! But I was able to get ready in just a few minutes and head back downstairs, and as the night wore on, I relaxed and my curls relaxed and I ended up being really happy with how I looked. Particularly when topped with a Santa hat to help hide the flatness on top, I thought my hair looked great!

Laura Dressed Up for the Holiday
Just before heading into the party. I have decided that I really like one shoulder dresses.
Laura and Daria
Duly noted that gold sparkly dresses are all the rage. I will look into one of those at some point.

To take this away from the self-absorption of my own hair and makeup, though, I’d also like to note just how stunningly beautiful Blake’s house looked. Christmas is her favorite holiday, and she and her husband JP go all out with the decorating. They had been prepping and decorating all week, and I had been helping as much as I could with the decorations cooking since I really sucked at anything artistic. (Did you know that a proper Christmas tree should have tiers of ornaments, with your first-tier ornaments on the outer branches and your second-tier ones on the inner branches where you can barely see them, to create depth? Just saying, I think someone has been watching a few too many White House Christmas specials on HGTV.) But for all my teasing, the end result was phenomenal and like nothing I had ever seen. Every room in the house was filled with festivity, and that was made even better once all the guests arrived to toast drinks and share holiday cheer. All three Christmas trees that Blake had carefully decorated looked stunning. Plus, you have to love JP’s pilot Santa on the front lawn!

Pilot Santa
Hopefully this plane has an up-to-date and working Kringle 3000 so it won’t stay stuck on Blake and JP’s lawn.

Since Blake absolutely loves Christmas ornaments, I was really excited to give her a personalized one that I had picked out for her at Gone For a Run. They contacted me a few weeks ago about checking out their products, and when I saw the Christmas tree ornaments, I really wanted to get one that looked just like her. I thought it was so cute that they come in different genders, skin colors, and hair colors, so you can match the ornament to the look of your favorite runner. And you can also write something cute on the blank bib on their front! I left that for Blake to do, since I wasn’t sure if she’d want to put her current marathon PR or wait until she smashes it by a lot when we start training at Tread daily. (Blake, if I put it on the blog, it must be true! So fetch.)

Runner Girl Ornament
If you like this ornament, you can pick one up yourself over at Gone for a Run.

Here in New York, all I have room for is a little three foot artificial pine tree, which I decorate with only about a dozen ornaments. (Don’t worry, they are all silver and all “first tier” so that I don’t have coordination issues.) I am definitely really envious of all the space that Blake has with which to decorate and host a party! For me, the best part of the holiday season is not the decorations or even the Christmas movies, but getting to celebrate with the people I love. (Which is why I have my Friendsgiving tradition instead of a typical Thanksgiving.) I can’t wait until I can live someplace with a bit more space for such things… and perhaps by then I’ll even learn the tiers of Christmas ornaments so I can do it up right? We’ll see.


6 thoughts on “Decorating Myself and Three Trees – Happy Holidays!”

    1. Ooh fun! I can’t wait to see the dress pic when you wear it 🙂 I have actually never shopped at White House Black Market but based on the cute things I’ve seen that come from there, I definitely need to give it a try.

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