want | need | wear | read : ME

want:  I've been in the market for some new ink for a while now and I'm hoping I can "scratch the itch" soon.  If I promise to get a big portrait of you, Santa, would you pretty please foot the bill?  (LAST MINUTE TIP:  make a cute homemade gift card and include some moolah for someone in your life who is wanting a new tat of her own.  This is a super easy last minute gift!) 

need:  I've said it before, and I'll say it again:  my eyes suck and I need to get more serious about seeing things clearly.  One of the main reasons I don't wear my glasses as often as I should is because I hate having to switch between prescription glasses and non-prescription sunnies.  For anyone who wears glasses, you know how weird it feels to go from "good vision" to "bad vision" in a swoop of an eyeglass frame.  I'm hoping this might be the Christmas that I can finally say, "Why yes, I can read that speed limit sign, officer!"  (LAST MINUTE TIP:  hack into your friend's computer and figure out when they have an opening on their schedule coming up and make them an appointment with an eye doctor.  Then after they get their new prescription, foot the bill for the new prescription sunglasses.  This is an easy-peasy 2-in-1, folks!) 

wear:  As a woman who is still nursing and still a long way off from feeling like putting on a super slim fitting sweater, this winter I'm all about my clothes fitting looser than…well…you can insert your own ending here.  This swingy sweatshirt is comfy enough for lounging around the house, easy enough for NC to access the goods, yet put together enough to wear out with jeans and boots.  (LAST MINUTE TIP:  brave the crowds and scoop up something pretty for your girl!  It's almost impossible to go wrong at H&M--find a store near you here!.)

read:  Everyone's raving, and I want to join in the fun.  As if 'Girls' wasn't reason enough, watching her hilarious short video series, 'Ask Lena', just sealed the deal.  (LAST MINUTE TIP:  buy the Kindle edition for her to read on one of her many techy devices!) 

This marks the end of our 2014 gift giving guide!  We hope you have an amazing holiday season filled with love, laughter, food, family, friends, and mistletoe.  See you in 2015.



want | need | wear | read : BABY

Today's WNWR-er is another sweet friend from college, Anna, who makes some of the most precious baby gear for her Etsy shop, Moshi Moshi. (Yeah, I dug into the Rhodes College alumni files for this series.  They should pay me for making it look like everyone who goes to Rhodes is as cool as we are.  That's right.  Humility.)  In addition to making other babies look adorable, she does a pretty good job of keeping her own little baby Lucy looking enviably precious too.  That's why her list of gifts for baby are so spot on.  So without further ado, I'll let her her take it away! 

want:  Lucy already has several things that she loves to ride on, but none are quite big or sturdy enough for future trips to the park.  We live up a steep drive (just steep, not fancy) so the park will be where we learn to bike ride.  I will be keeping an eye out for one of these bad boys at yard sales and consignment stores.  I read somewhere that kiddies outgrow these kind of quickly so a cheaper option is the way to go for me!
need:  We are taking a trip to Japan this winter to celebrate my grandmother’s 100th birthday!  What?!  And her birthday is also New Year’s in Japan!  One of the country’s biggest celebrations.  Double what?!  Japan is a country of people that love and aren't afraid of walking and even though it will be chilly chilly cold, we will probably do a good bit of it.  So Lucy is going to need some good warm boots.  I’ll readily admit that there are probably cuter, more Instagram-worthy boots out there, but I trust Stride Rite and their shoes have been good to Lucy’s feet so far. Practical choices here we come.

wear:  Lucy started snoozing in the infant version of this sleep sack at about six months after another mom recommended it to me.  This particular brand has a hefty price for basically a wearable blanket, but it goes from age 0-2 so it lasts a good while.  Lucy has just about grown too long for hers at 18 months but she’s a tall one.  That’s why this toddler size one (ages 2-4) is on our wear list! The arm holes have a snap to adjust for smaller babes, there is a place to put the car seat buckle (the crotch one..what is that actually called?) so that you can transfer peacefully sleeping kiddos from crib to car and vice versa (Yeah right, snort snort. Oh, your kid can do that? Not mine.)  It’s all season, all weather, and all around awesome.  It is a critical part of our nap and bedtime routine…Lucy sees the sleep sack coming and knows I’m not playing around. It’s time to sleep, baby.

read:  My dad read these books to me when I was younger and I loved them.  Loved reading them to myself even as I got older.  Loved them in college and still love them.  Love the movies as they come out too (but I have a problem with people who love the movies but haven’t read the books –give the books a chance!).  I had a box set growing up (I use the past tense because I might have misplaced one of them freshman year while trying to show how cultured and “CS Lewis in the know” I was –sorry, Dad.) and I would love for Lucy to have her own.  She doesn’t have the attention span to get past a page full of words being read to her, but like most things in babydom I’m learning, change happens quickly.  So I want to be armed and ready with these books for when her book-attention-span develops into something longer than my rap version of 'Itsy Bitsy Spider'.  

Thanks so much, Anna!  Can I just also note that I would pay to have a recorded version of your rap version of 'Itsy Bitsy Spider'?!?  It's pretty much NC's favorite song and I think she would become your biggest fan pretty quickly.

I've got one more WNWR list for you on Monday, compiled by yours truly.  If you have any last minute gifts you still need to get for someone special in your life, all of my picks are procrastinator-friendly.



want | need | wear | read : HIM

This dude really needs no introduction so I'll keep it short:  my Mr. is the jam.  And so is his gift guide.  All of his ideas will translate perfectly to that special dude in your life, whether it's buying him a piece of gear to assist him with his latest hobby or taking advantage of the opportunity to pick out the perfect slim-fit trouser for him to replace his baggy pleated khakis.  So, without further ado...

want:  If you've ever seen A River Runs Through It, you probably understand the allure of fly fishing.  Standing thigh deep in a beautiful and powerful river amongst stunning scenery, the ultimate focus on the current moment, studying the dance of the water over the features below to interpret where the fish are hiding--all reasons I want to learn this art.  For Colorado, this rod will get you everywhere you want to go from delicately presenting a dry fly on a small mountain stream to nymphing a high alpine lake.  Also, you don't have to sell your car to buy it, which is nice.

  need:  As a gentleman of "uncommon proportions" (to put it kindly), dress clothes that don't make me look like I'm playing dress up in daddy's work shirts are hard to come by.  J.Crew has lots of love for the skinny, tall man and the quality is worth the price.

 wear:  I've been on a search for a simple, low-profile shoe that I can wear both casually and to work over the last few years.  TOMS Cordones came close, but disintegrated in a little under two years without much abuse.  I'm hoping these Vans will be the answer.  

read:  With dreams of DIY renovations in our future, we gotta start figuring out what the hell we're doing.

The next WNWR is all about baby!  All the adorable (and seasonally appropriate!) gifts to get for the little humans in your life, curated by the genius behind Moshi Moshi.


want | need | wear | read : HER

I asked a good ole' friend of mine to contribute for today's WNWR gift guide and she really hit the nail on the head.  Lauren Kennedy is one of the most stylish and graceful human beings I've ever known, plus she's super talented and wicked smart to boot.  By day she works for Ballet Memphis (which brought her to be included in the Memphis Flyer's 2014 edition of 20<30), and by, well, the rest of her life, she plays a leading role in the blossoming art scene in Memphis and beyond.  She runs and curates a gallery out of her own living room, Southfork (which has gotten amazing wonderful beautiful reviews recently, by the way), and recently co-curated Pandora's Children, a three-part feminist exhibition featuring regional and national artists, at the Clough Hanson Gallery at Rhodes College (Lauren's & my beloved alma mater).  For as long as I've known her (going on 10 years now, Lauren, can you believe it??), she has been passionate about lending her unique point of view to bring art to the masses.

Naturally, Lauren's WNWR list focuses on objects of beauty which are perfect for any woman in your life.  You can easily adjust Lauren's gift ideas to suit any special lady of your own, whether it be a great piece of art, a beautiful piece of jewelry, a classic piece of clothing she will wear forever, or a book to bring her inspiration for years to come. 

want:  Alex Paulus is a friend of mine and an artist whose work I enjoy a lot.  He was in a great show I put together at Southfork, and I've been wanting to keep one of his weirdo paintings for a while.  They're irreverent and smart in a dumb kind of way, and I love the colors and textures.  Plus, art has to make the best gift ever.

need:  I haven't bought a new coat in years and it is high time.  I love Zara in general because their pieces are always nice but still ultimately affordable.  I have been trying for years to retrain myself to save up a little and buy one nice thing instead of several crappy things, and Zara is usually a place where I can do that.  Figuring out something that somebody needs but hasn't been able to spend good money on themselves for whatever reason is always a great gift.  Plus, I just can't get enough of this color green.  I want it on everything.

wear:  I love this jewelry designer based out of my hometown of Dallas, F is for Frank.  I have one of their stingray rings and it is a piece that I wear all the time, and constantly get compliments on.  I have been looking at this necklace for months and am sure that I would wear it a lot.  All of their stuff is great.

read:  I have always been enamored with Louise Bourgeois, but have been thinking about her even more lately after seeing some of her work in DC this summer and being asked to be a part of this feminist show at Rhodes.  I would love to have a big, beautiful book of her work and writings to spend some time with.

Come back for our next WNWR gift guide, comin' atchya from a pretty fly guy & equally rad dad, my one and only Mr. 


want | need | wear | read: HOLIDAY 2014

Finally!  The time has come when all of us who are afflicted with closet Christmas-mania all year long are finally allowed to be honest about our addiction and live out in the open with all of our holiday-inspired obsessions on display.  No more secretly watching Christmas movies when the Mr. is working the night shift.  No more listening to Christmas music in the car and making sure to change the CD before I get out just in case the Mr. gets in and sees what I was listening to.  No more huffing the pine scented candles in the closet.  Now I can burn that candle in the wide open and sniff sniff sniff to my heart's content.  Take that, Scrooges of the world!  Christmas time is here, bitches.


Since this will be the first year that our daughter might actually have some grasp on what is going on with all the gift giving and receiving, we really want to make sure that we start to instill a sense of humility and gratitude in her right away.  We also want to make sure that the joy and excitement of the gift giving season isn't drowned by quantity, but instead highlighted by a few select things that will be gifts to remember.

So, the Mr. and I decided to follow the lead of one of my favorite bloggers, James from Bleubird, and follow a prescribed formula for gift giving:  

1- Something you want.
2- Something you need.
3- Something to wear.
4- Something to read.

In the coming weeks, I'll be posting a few different gift guides that ascribe to the above gift giving rules.  As the Mr. and I have been putting together our own lists, we've found that the rules really help us appreciate everything that we have and see how little we actually need.  We've realized that Christmas is not a season for who's spending the most money, or who has the biggest pile under the tree.  This year, we're keeping it small, and we invite you to do the same.

Start your list-making!  (Supporting Noonday Collection would be a great place to start!)  Make sure to come back in a couple days for our first gift guide geared toward the special women in your lives.

Happy Holidays!

(image via here)