Preparing for Christmas in November

23 November 2015

I promise this isn't a list that tells you to deep clean your home before the holidays. As true as that is, I have a few other tasks that I like to see done before the most wonderful time of the year. I'm under very strict rules here where I am absolutely not aloud to do any Christmas-y things until after Thanksgiving. In an effort to stay on top of the holiday season, I do have a few projects that I like to tackle during the month of November to keep things running smoothly during December to ensure a fun and enjoyable month!

HOLIDAY CARDS! - It is a priority for me to get these ordered and mailed pre-December. 

I try my hardest to get our holiday cards sealed, stamped and delivered by the first week of December at the latest. Despite my best efforts, L and I still haven't had the opportunity to snap a fun picture and are hoping that we can get one while we're in Maine over Thanksgiving. Once again, we will be ordering ours through Tiny Prints, and already have some designs picked out!

GET ORGANIZED! - I am the queen of lists, and rely heavily on them for everything!

If there is one thing I'm good at... it's making a list. Having something written down in front of my face and crossing it off may just be the most satisfactory thing ever. I recently designed and put my Christmas Planner up for sale on Etsy (you like that nice plug I put in for myself?) and have been relying on it constantly this season already. With so many baking recipes, christmas gifts, events, and decorations to account for, this was most ideal in helping me with December craziness. Now that everything is logged and accounted for, it's a one stop shop when it comes to anything December related! 

SHOPPING! - I told myself last year that everyone was getting gift cards for Christmas this year, and despite my intentions... everything but that is true.

I get so much joy from picking out gifts that I truly think our friends and family will enjoy, and get even more joy out of wrapping each of them up and looking at them under the tree. I am pleased to say that about 90% of our holiday shopping is complete and I will have to check a very large suitcase to get L's family gifts out to Ohio! We haven't begun the wrapping process yet, but having almost everything picked out and ready to go before it's even December is a HUGE weight off of our shoulders! 

HOLIDAY PLAYLIST! - Without a doubt, when the clock strikes 12 Thanksgiving evening, I can assure you the Christmas tunes will begin to ring!

I won't be missing a beat when it comes to my beloved holiday jingles, and I sure hope you won't be either! Putting together a playlist has become a world of a lot easier (hello, Spotify) over the past few years, however make sure all of your ducks are in a row so that you are ready to push play come Black Friday!

HOLIDAY OUTFITS! - Get them now before you're stuck wearing your most festive set of pajamas to your holiday party!

Speaking from experience, I can't stress the importance of getting your holiday outfits and pajamas together before they sneak up on you. Here it is, late November, and I need to wrangle together at least two work party outfits, and other items to wear for events. Of course I can repeat outfits ("you are an outfit repeater, Lizzie McGuire") and have no shame in doing so, but that doesn't discount the fact that I am in dire need of new holiday pajamas. I'm not joking when I say I have worn my buffalo plaid jams ALL YEAR ROUND and they have definitely lost their Christmas cheer. Poorly played on my part.


How do you prep for December in November?
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KAYLIEDESIGNS - My new Etsy shop featuring instant downloads!

17 November 2015

I'm really excited to share with you a little project that I have been working on for   S O M E   T IM E   now. I briefly mentioned it a few weeks ago, and I haven't had the chance to really feature it until now! 

I recently opened a little Etsy shop under the name "KAYLIEDESIGNS" that features some printables that I have created here and there. I've always been a huge list maker, so it only seemed appropriate to design a streamlined look that could offer a hand when it came to organizing my life! 

While you'll see that I only have three items for sale in my shop right now:
  1. Christmas Planner (13 pages)
  2. Pet Care Kit (3 pages)
  3. Medical Information Kit (4 pages)
I will slowly but surely be adding more and more inventory as I continue to design and create them! I'm bursting with ideas and am trying to allocate an appropriate amount of time towards my new "hobby". Sometimes I'll be up all night designing something to look over and see it's 3am... what the what!? I'm having SO much fun with it!

It is still 100% in the beginning stages but I'm very excited to work on it and see how it goes!!

I'm currently offering LIFE AS YOU LIVE IT readers 50% off in my shop with the coupon code LIFEASYOULIVEIT2015 until the end of the year (December 31, 2015), so please check things out, share with your friends, and let me know what you think! I'm also offering rotating free printables under the "PRINTABLES" tab at the top of this page. This will take you to a google docs page where you can download it and print from there! 

Thank you guys so much! Let me know what you think (:

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Weekend Life and Links

14 November 2015

(skiing wildcat mountain last year!)

Happy Sunday everyone!

I wanted to pop in today and share some links that caught my eye this week!
  • Somebody buy me this house from Old House Dreams! Imagine the possibilities. I'd turn it into a B & B! 
  • Why these vintage Nike's aren't in my closet yet, I don't know... they've certainly snuck their way onto my Christmas list though ;)
  • I love these little video tutorials that have been going around for a while! Maybe this is the secret to amazing cheese dip!
  • I'm trying to become a little more organized both at home and the office and am feeling incredibly inspired by Jen's setup
  • I wanted to write a year in review last year, but felt like people would be bored with it. I ended up creating one styled like this for this year!
Have a wonderful weekend, friends!
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Pray for Paris

My heart breaks for everyone and their families who were victims of the attacks on Paris yesterday.

Praying that our world can find peace again!


08 November 2015

After I hit publish on my 24 hour fall city guide the other day, I was feeling inspired and in need of another pumpkin-y treat! Originally adapted from "The Finer Things in Life", I put my baking skills to the test and whipped up a delicious pumpkin sensation!

  • 1 (15 oz.) can of pumpkin puree
  • 1 (12 oz.) can of evaporated milk
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 2 teaspoons of cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 (15 oz.) box of yellow cake mix
  • 3/4 cups of butter
  • 1 1/2 cups of chopped walnuts
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In large mixing bowl, combine pumpkin puree, evaporated milk, eggs, sugar, cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice and mix until smooth.
  3. Pour mixture into a greased 9" x 13"
  4. Crumble the yellow cake mix, and spread it over the top.
  5. Evenly Sprinkle the chopped walnuts on top of the yellow cake mix.
  6. Evenly pour the melted butter all over the entire cake.
  7. Bake for one hour. Let cool, and serve with whipped cream!

What's your favorite fall treat? Another favorite of mine are these delicious pumpkin cookies!

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07 November 2015

Welcome to your virtual 24 hour fall guide around Boston!
I wanted to give you a little glimpse into what Fall looks like here in the city and let you in on some fun fall activities! If you happen to visiting Boston this time of the year, there are always a handful of local business's, events, and hidden gems that keep the season alive and cater to the fall attractions. If you live in a different city that offers a lot of fun fall activities as well, make your own fall list using this event planning management page to help support local event creation!

  1. This may sound like the most common Boston activity ever, however I highly recommend you take some time to WALK THE FREEDOM TRAIL, or at least some of it! You would be surprised how many of the following activities listed below you might run into en route. Whether you opt to go with a tour guide, or by yourself, the trail starts in Boston Common, takes you past many historic sites, through the North End, and ends at the Bunker Hill Monument. It's 2.5 miles long and varies in time depending on your pace and how much time you spend at each Freedom Trail site.

  2. If you are visiting on a Friday or Saturday, you might happen to come across the FRESH PRODUCE AT HAYMARKET located by Faneuil Hall and on the Freedom Trail route. Open all year round (except for Christmas day and New Years day) from dawn to dusk, this is the oldest open air market in the country! Vendors set up stands filled with fresh produce, flowers and pumpkins (in the fall) and offer second to none prices!

  3. Right next door to Haymarket, is the very new permanent, year round market featuring locally sourced food all under one roof. Open Wednesday through Sunday from 8am to 8pm, pick up some HOT APPLE CIDER AND CIDER DONUTS AT THE BOSTON PUBLIC MARKET to start (or continue on with) your day!

  4. It's important to take advantage of all of the SHOPPING ON NEWBURY STREET right before the holidays. Packed solid with almost every store imaginable, start down by the Public Garden and work your way up towards Fenway Park! Downtown Crossing and Faneuil Hall have some shops as well!

  5. Although it isn't winter yet, and probably hasn't started to snow either, ICE SKATING AT THE BOSTON COMMON FROG POND is sometimes most enjoyable when the temperatures are still manageable and you are surrounded by the beautiful fall foliage. Scheduled to open mid to late November, don't miss this perfect skating weather!

  6. If you're a basketball or hockey junkie, STOP BY TD GARDEN TO CATCH A GAME where they are constantly hosting the Celtics and Bruins! Don't have a ticket? Don't worry! There are always scalpers nearby!

  7. Known for their beer in and around the city, TOUR A HANDFUL OF MICROBREWS WITH BOSTON BREW TOURS. You drink, they drive... hop in their beer van as they tote you around to four local microbrews where you get a tour and samples at each beer house!

  8. While you're out and about feasting on Italian food in the North End, stop by THE IMPROV ASYLUM ON HANOVER STREET to get a good laugh in! On Friday and Saturday nights at 12am they have a Raunch show where they perform some adults only improv!

  9. If you're around during the HEAD OF THE CHARLES REGATTA in October, I highly recommend making an effort to swing by and watch the worlds largest two day rowing event!



  1. It's important to participate in the most fall-esque activity out there, so why not do some APPLE PICKING AT THE OLDEST WORKING FARM IN THE COUNTRY, LOOKOUT FARM! Located in South Natick, the farm lets you pick your own fruit, visit with the farm animals and visit the recently launched cidery and taproom! L and I made it out to Russel Orchards last year and enjoyed the wine tasting that they had to offer!

  2. If you're a lover of Cape Cod Kettle Cooked chips, make sure you pencil the CAPE COD FACTORY TOUR into you itinerary. Located in Hyannis you will learn the ins and outs as to how their legendary chips are made!

  3. Whether you're taking a car or train, take some time to ENJOY THE NEW ENGLAND FALL FOLIAGE outside of the city. There are several driving routes, however I prefer the scenes I get from riding the Downeaster Train up North.

  4. Despite the rocky land, we do have some fun New England corn maizes and farms that draw a lot of fun! CONNORS FARM IN DANVERS offers not only a fun maize, but also a cute market and other attractions.

  5. I also encourage you to TAKE THE COMMUTER RAIL UP TO SALEM in October for your yearly dose of Halloween! October is their month and they don't miss a beat when it comes to costumes, food, parades, haunted houses, and anything else Halloween related! (Last years trip to Salem)

What fun fall things are there to do in your city!?
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View from my Lens

31 October 2015

In an effort to keep the content of this blog a little more organized, yet still personal, I have decided to incorporate a "view from my lens post" (similar to this post last year) at the end of each month to recap life and other happenings. I'm a little behind with these updates, so this month will have some August and September tossed in as well.

I hope you enjoy these little snaps from my phone as much as I do.

Back in September, N and I bought season pool passes on the last day it was open. Win!

Our first experience at Diana's Bath in Bartlett, NH!

A fun little selfie to commemorate our first last day of school. The finish line is in sight!

Lazy weekend mornings call for brownies for breakfast in bed!

I chopped my hair off in September to a long bob and I'm thrilled!

We spent a few weekends fair hopping around New Hampshire!

 Taking in the gorgeous views of Castle in the Clouds.

 Hiked my butt up Mount Washington and checked another thing off of my 30 x 30 list!

Carved some beautiful fall pumpkins... only to have them rot and mold 3 days later. :(

 Only because this pictures kills me... my one and only playing sick. Drama. Queen.

How was your October!?

I hope everyone has a fun and safe Halloween!!

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