I have recently moved and really don't have enough space for a large Christmas tree, like in years past, however, was feeling pretty down about not having a tree.  The thought of not really decorating for the holidays is sad, especially since I love to do it (but again, minimal space).  

After having a bad day on Monday, and venting to my sister, she showed up at my office on Tuesday with a wrapped gift.  I eagerly unwrapped my present to find this sweet (three-foot tall) white Christmas tree (with lights)!  

She bought it for me along with some feather ornaments (I've been coveting a feather tree from Bouclair for two years now) to stick in my tree, since those feather trees are damn expensive.  How sweet is that?  And just like that, she made my year. 
{ the day I received the box I snapped these photos with my iPhone as I opened it up }

When one of my closest blogger friends Sharon told me she wanted to send me something in the mail, I was intrigued and excited.  Well, the package has arrived and let me tell you, girl spoiled me something good!  First off, she spent $27 in shipping costs alone, isn't that wild?! Isn't that so generous?!  I know!  Secondly, she sent me a whole box full of goodies.  Not just one or two things, a whole box full.  She decorated the inside of the box with magazine models (you can see in the pic above) and wrapped everything up in her signature print: Hello Kitty.  I can't believe everything she sent me.  It's ridiculously generous.  We've never met in person (hopefully someday we will), I've 'known' her for just under a year, but we've become great friends.  She lives in Hawaii, me in Canada, it's like worlds apart, yet, I feel so lucky to have made such a great friend through this amazing place we call the blogosphere.   

Sharon, thank you so much for these gifts, I love them all so much!

{ Maui cookies - they are so good }

 { Hawaiian lotion, chocolates & chips, some cute sticky notes & black ankle socks (not pictured) }

{ cute vest she sent with great crochet-like detail at the back }

 { la piece de resistance:  Jeffrey Campbell sandals!!  
My first pair ever!  Isn't Sharon the best?! }

Now that you've drooled over the amazing Hawaiian goodies and been saying to yourself, 'Wow, Amanda is so lucky to have such a great Hawaiian friend', head over to Sharon's blog and show her some love (and tell her to get better because she's been under the weather the past couple days).

 { black & white with lots of stripes }

I was totally spoiled this year for Christmas by my family, friends and hubs, and wanted to share with you a few of my favourite goodies.  

 { two jackets with fur & a tulip dress }

 { chiffon & wool tops with a clutch & pashmina to match }

 { the wool snood I was coveting & a super soft scarf }

 { various shoe paraphenalia }

 { MAC Fix + this stuff was a savour on our wedding day thanks to the BFF }

 { Gucci shades - ballinnnnnn' }

 { recognize this shoe?  Hubs had our jeweler custom make this pendant.  
The stone is a orange sapphire }

 What you didn't see:
* Sewing machine (sneak peak)
* Various Bath & Body Works products
* A spider catching device (don't ask)
* Two pairs of black lace-ish patterned tights
* Spa gift certificate (mani, pedi, facial & hair styling)
* Mall gift card & some money
* An iPhone clock radio
* Leopard Christmas ball ornament
* BCBG beaded bracelet in navy with a 'pisces' charm
* Pier 1 candle in my favourite scent
* White fur knee boots
* China serving platter & bowl
* Lots of chocolate

{ with my chinese-gift-exchange score: two bottles of my fave champagne }

Every year at Christmas time, my high-school friends and I (aka THE 5) get together at my place for potluck dinner and a chinese gift exchange.  We all live in various places and have busy lives and the only time we connect with all five of us is at Christmas.  We try to get together twice a year, but Christmas is always a certainty.

This year it almost didn't pan out as one friend was only in town for a few days, and we all know how busy it can be during the holidays.  However, another friend suggested we do a potluck brunch instead and it worked out so well.  We had baked french toast, veggie quiche, bacon, a fruit platter, fresh juice and coffee.  It was delicious and after we stuffed ourselves with a late brunch, we did our chinese gift exchange ($20 limit) which was equally as fun.  Afterwards we discussed who we have and haven't seen recently from High School, what's coming up in the future, etc.  It's so cool to stay in touch with friends I've had for over a decade (wow, that makes me feel a lil' old) and reminisce about the old memories and create new ones.

{ THE 5 - Christmas 2010 }

See Christmas 2009 & 2008

 { our family tree }

Merry Christmas everyone!  It's been a crazy busy last few days and I've missed you all very much.  I know I've been MIA but the holiday season has taken over my life, and honestly, that's pretty nice.  On Christmas eve I went to work in the morning and spent my time exchanging gifts with friends and coworkers, tying up some lose ends before my 10-day-long vacation, drinking coffee with Bailey's and attending an annual Christmas eve potluck (brunch).  It was fantastic.  I left work around noon and heading in the direction of home with a few stops.  

My sister came over to my place and we got busy preparing (my dad's birthday) dinner for that night (tacos - his choice).  My parents and grandparents showed up just before 5pm and we ate, talked, and laughed.  

Much later that night, my parents, sister and I headed to my parent's house to keep up our annual tradition of us sleeping over the night before Christmas.  We woke up later than normal (which was so nice to sleep in!) and ate breakfast (a combination of fresh fruit, cinnamon buns and croissants) and drank mimosas.  We then ran to the living room to see what Santa brought us and open our gifts.  I was totally spoiled by my parents, sister, hubs and in-laws.  That night we had our (traditional) turkey dinner (my fave) and of course stuffed ourselves to the brim.  

I hope everyone had a fabulous Christmas and I'll be checking your blogs to hopefully see how it went.  I will also be posting more detailed shots on what I got, Boxing Day shopping and more. 

 { my stocking & Santa gifts }

 { opening something totally unexpected and totally exciting: 
my very own sewing machine! }

{ our tree at home with all our gifts underneath }

  I got the boots!!!

Good morning ladies!  As you may recall, I had quite the eventful weekend lined up (yipee!) and thought a recap would be a great way to fit it all in (especially since I said I would).

The weekend started off with me arriving home Friday evening to these amazing shoes (above)! My fiancĂ© bought them for me for our anniversary and the wonderful UPS man delivered them.  They are a perfect fit and remind me of my recently purchased Anne Michelle heels which I'm already obsessed with after one wear.  They fit perfect and I've been craving some new red shoes (thanks M!).

Saturday was a little road/shopping trip.  Four girls, starbucks in hand and a rental car later, we hit the road around 9am excited for a full day of shopping.  The trip was very successful (a little too successful?) and I was back home just after 9pm.

{ me & CG }

{ purchases }

I know you all wanted to see what I bought, but, you're going to have to wait until I reveal them in an outfit post (you won't be waiting long).  However, to tide you over, I'm sharing one (of the several) dresses I purchased.  This dress excites me and I can't wait to rock it. 

{ H&M, size 8 }

Sunday I was up early (again) to get together with THE 5 (my high-school girlfriends which includes my bff) for breakfast.  We met at (gasp!) 8:30am because yours truly had a jewellery show to do at noon, so we wanted to ensure there was enough time.  Those girls are serious troopers, thanks ladies.

Afterwards it was off to do an A.Co Designs jewellery show.  The show was very successful with about 10 women who loved the product and seemed to have a great time.  Thanks to AT for hosting.  Heres's a picture of my set-up:

What I Wore:
Jacob Connexion jacket, A.Co Designs Shredded Shawl/Scarf, Sirens tank,
American Eagle cami,  Almost Famous jeans (also seen here), Spring sandals,
A.Co Designs key necklace, Old Navy clutch, Hot Diamonds ring, Bay bangle & Suzy ring

* Don't forget to enter my A.Co Designs give-away
Dynamite skirt, American Eagle top, Costa Blanca belt
Le Chateau & Mexx bracelets, Guess Pumps,
vintage necklace & Hot Diamonds ring

My wonderful fiancĂ© got me this belt for my birthday (among other wonderful things) and I paired it with one of my favourite pencil skirts and a billowy-summery top which has been waiting for it's break-out this year.  I envision this belt getting a lot of play from waist-cinching tops to high-waisted skirts - a perfect gift. 

Jamie from one of my favourite blogs GLAM LATTE has Bag Tagged me!  So, in the true spirit of bag tagging (check out my previous bag post here) check out what I'm toting around now:

{ my new Matt & Nat bag from my future SIL }

{ iPhone, car keys, Coach wallet, pashmina, Victoria's Secret Beauty Rush 'Minty' lip gloss, clear nail polish, studded bangle, purse holder & Aldo sunglasses case }

Now it's your turn.  I'm tagging some favourite bloggers to do the same:

Elaine @ Clothed Much
Khatu @ I AM KHATU

{ delicious berry punch }

This weekend I had my birthday party and it was such a great night.  I invited my favourite girls over for a night of eating, drinking and socializing.  I think everyone had a great time, I certainly did!  Thank  you so much to LC, KC, PK, JM, SS, SL, CG, NB for making my birthday so wonderful and memorable.  <3

{ the spread }

{ opening some gifts }

{ beautiful flowers from CG & NB }

{ my new Coach wallet from SS }

{ great belt & skirt from KC }

{ sweet wedges from SL }

{ great card from NB}

{ love these bangles from CG }

{ so fitting }

{ hatbox from LC - our birthday tradition lives on in a home made version this year }

{ very cool book from SL }

{ great art from PK }

{ beautiful homemade gift from CG }
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