Top Five Tingles: November

Now that we are mere hours away from the highlight of November (Thanksgiving) and the official kick-off of the winter holiday season, I thought it might be a perfect opportunity to put up my Top 5 Tingles for the month of November. Consider it a Black Friday wish list of sorts ; )

1. Melissa Huntsman 

A fantastic Kermis scene locket by Melissa Huntsman

Among the sea of craftsmen and artists at the Half Moon Bay Pumpkin Festival last month, only a few booths have stuck with me  and made me dream of them over and over again. Melissa Huntsman is one of them. Her jewelry was not only the most reasonably priced on Main Street, but her designs were unique, whimsical and feminine without being too ornate and cheesy. Something that is frankly hard to come by. Usually any jewelry artist that you meet will continually add flourishes and embellishments until they are selling a feathered, sequins, bedazzled mess. I very much appreciated that she didn’t overly work her necklaces or earrings. One of her pieces that I absolutely fell in love with was one of the most amazing lockets I’ve ever seen before in my life. It is an oversized locket with what looks like a Dutch kermis scene on the face. After spending a few months in Amsterdam as well as devoting a portion of my collegiate life to studying the Dutch Golden Age – this locket called out my name and sang a silent siren song that I can’t possibly describe! I instantly fell in love. I’m pretty sure I even made some unidentifiable sounds when I first laid eyes on this piece. The details are incredible, the scene is so lively and dutch and fun and every time I wear it, I feel like I’ve been immediately transported back to my little flat on the Princengracht. I definitely suggest you check out Ms. Huntsman. You may hear your own siren song calling out to you after looking at her work!

2. First Aid Kit

First Aid Kit

About 3 years ago (THREE YEARS?!?!) I just by accident came across this band that really spoke to me. First Aid Kit. They are a group consisting of 2 Swedish sisters who have hauntingly beautiful voices. Their woodsy folk-inspired songs transport you to a completely different plane. About a year ago, I had the IMMENSE pleasure of seeing them live at The Bottom of the Hill in San Francisco. It is one of those nights that I will always remember and cherish. Honestly. Some performances are so special that you always want to carry them with you. I will never forget that night. It was such an intimate performance with a perfectly small audience. And as they sang songs off of their album, “The Big Black & The Blue” a few times I found myself tearing up at just the beauty of their lyrics and songs. Well a few weeks ago I was lucky once again to see them at the Fox Theater in Oakland. With a larger audience it was a different experience, but it still did not diminish from their awesome talent and I felt so prized to be feet from them again and see how amazing they are. I highly, HIGHLY suggest you download their album as fast as you can. You will not regret it!

3. Bento Boxes

A gorgeous and colorful Bento Box perfect for lunch time!

For about 3 months I’ve been following a Facebook Friend on her daily journey through the bright, colorful and very very appetizing world of Bento Boxes. It seems like every week or so she’ll post how she organizes her lunches into bento boxes and describes what she’s eating from noodles, to pickled cucumber relish to homemade sushi rolls and of course – miniature cut fruit and cookies. There is something inherent inside of me that loves the idea of compartmentalized kits. A place for everything and everything in its place. So of course Bento Boxes are speaking my name. There are actually quite a lot of different kinds out there. Whenever I feel that I need some more organization in my personal and culinary life, I like to look online at some of my favorite producers of bento boxes. Laptop Lunches and Lunchbots make great carriers, but I think that the carrier is one of the most important elements in deciding how you want your meals to be presented. I’m a firm believer in trying out a few different choice before settling in on one style. It is your lunch after all! A break in your office day – so why wouldn’t you want to make it special?

4. Full Exposure  by Smashbox

Full Exposure by Smashbox

A few weeks ago there was a sale at Nordstroms where you buy 2 mascaras and get 1 free! HELLO!  How could you not pass it up?! Of course I bought one of the standards in high quality mascara (Diorshow). It’s a classic standby, a favorite and always works. But I thought for the free mascara I should try out a different product. I was pleasantly surprised by Smashbox’s “Full Exposure”. Inspired by the technique of layering mascaras (which I do anyways) it is incredibly lengthening and volumizing without the flakey or clumpy look. Lately I’ve been dedicating most of my make-up routine to highlighting those lashes! It really does add instant drama and beauty. I’ve been using Full Exposure for a few weeks now and believe it or not – I’ve gotten quite a few compliments and 2 people have asked me if I’m wearing falsies. If that isn’t a raw ad for this mascara, then I dont’ know what is! BUY IT! Your lashes will love you!

5. Tory Burch Ambrose Cap Toe Flat

Tory Burch Ambrose Flannel Flat (aka my foot's sole mate)

During the same Nordstrom Mascara sale, I had to skip over to the shoe section right?! Well, it was a poor decision because I left my heart in the ladies footwear lounge at the Pleasanton Nordstroms…The Tory Burch Ambrose Flannel flat is heaven on a foot. I love, Love, LOVE the look of these flats. Part flannel, part warm leather. These flats remind me of the classic fall collegiate sports in the 1950’s. Burying your hands a toasty flannel blanket while the home team plays on the grid iron only to skip off early to sip on a cup of tea in an oversized leather chair in the school library with your favorite book. GAWD! I need these shoes! I need to have them south of my ankles NOW! I can think of at least 40 outfits right now that these shoes would be perfect for. It’s hard for me to fall so hard for a flat, but these are it. So classically mid-century american. DREAM!

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