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Wednesday, December 30


i only recently began to make new year's resolutions,
but it is something that i have really come to enjoy.
i do well when i have a goal to work towards,
so perhaps this will help me accomplish a few things
that have been on my wish list for a while.

image credit

here are my resolutions for 2010:

1. talk to my far away friends more
{even just ten minute phone calls.
i know we are all so busy, but i miss each one of you so much}

2. run 365 miles over the course of the year
{this averages to about 7 miles per week. it will be difficult at first, but i welcome the challenge.}

3. complete a half-marathon or a sprint triathlon

4. make a daily scrapbook of sorts in my planner
{i read about the idea here and loved it.}

5. experiment more in the kitchen & try new recipes

6. spend more time in prayer and reflection of my faith
i get so caught up in the worry and stress of the days, that i forget it is all out of my hands. i often think negative things about other people when they wrong me, about school when it gets really tough, about work when it is frustrating. before i justified this by the fact that i only thought these things, but...

the word of God is living and active. sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. nothing in all creation is hidden from God's sight. everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account. ~ hebrews 4:12-13

so here's to being more positive, spending less time worrying and more time blessing, reading and remembering scripture, having a heart of thankfulness, and living a life of faith.

i wish you all a new year filled with everything you desire.
thanks for reading and commenting on this little blog;
it really makes me happy.

copyright Hiking in Stilettos

Monday, December 28

first time follies

this holiday was the first time i attempted
to make a blueberry pie from scratch.

i have made pies with my mom before, but let's be honest,
she's a master baker/cook and told me exactly what to do.
this year i was completely on my own.
{with a little help from husband}

{my favorite part was the lattice top.}

it was definitely a fun adventure,
but i think that my pie-making skills need some polishing.
the blueberry pie i made tasted pretty good,
but it looked like a small disaster.

{the is the pre-baked version. it looks a lot better than its baked counterpart.}

the crust hung over the side of the pie plate a bit,
so when it baked, the crust burned and fell off the side.
apparently i was supposed to cover the crust with foil.

despite its slightly ragged appearance,
the first ever ashley-made blueberry pie tasted quite delish.

for more pie inspirations, watch this movie.
i love it.
happy baking.

copyright Hiking in Stilettos

Friday, December 25

christmas letters

dear readers,
thank you for your continued support.

i absolutely love that you read this little blog,
and your comments always make my day.

dear iowa pine candle,
you make our apartment smell so lovely,

that i will continue to burn you long after christmas is over.

dear colorado,

i miss you already.
husband and i loved your cold weather
and abundance of snow.
we promise to visit again very soon.

dear sharpie pens,
you are my new favorite.

dear peppermint mocha creamer,

i am sad that i can no longer find you in the grocery store.
i guess i will just have to wait until next holiday
for you to come around again.

dear snow,
sometimes i wish you would visit the southeast.

dear husband,

you're kind of amazing.

i love you.

happy christmas to you all

copyright Hiking in Stilettos

Thursday, December 24

handmade holidays

this year i gave homemade chocolate/peppermint sugar cookies
and creamy hot coca mix to husband's family as gifts.

baking the cookies was quite fun since husband helped out,
and the hot chocolate mix is my absolute favorite.
judging by the reactions, the combination was a huge success.

for the hot coca i mixed:
2 cups nestle hot cocoa mix
1 cup original coffemate creamer
1/2 cup confectioner sugar

the creamer makes the cocoa extra creamy and delicious.
next time i think i will use vanilla flavored instead.
yum yum yum.

copyright Hiking in Stilettos

Wednesday, December 23


i was unsure about the dolman sleeves on this dress,
but my bestie talked me into it.

she was right.
as always.


dress, lizard thicket boutique; tank, richard chai for target;
boots, vintage {my mom's}; belt & ring, f21

copyright Hiking in Stilettos

Tuesday, December 22

gifts for: the baker/cook/chef

for the person who loves to cook or bake,
any of these items will definitely bring about smiles.

an apron for days spent up to their elbows in cooking/baking:

fancy pot holders to brighten their kitchen:

a milk bottle carafe for homemade juices:

ceramic ruled measuring cups for all their recipes:

a unique timer for keeping track of what's in the oven:

a set of eco-friendly mixing bowls for years of baking:

happy holiday baking and cooking to you all.

copyright Hiking in Stilettos

Monday, December 21

gifts for: the university student

from undergrad to professional and graduate studies,
any student would enjoy these:

a unique coffee mug for late nights spent studying:

an organizer for keeping all of their needs:

a laptop case for days spent at coffee shops:

a vintage-inspired desk calendar to brighten their days:

fun, printed notebooks for days in lecture halls:

copyright Hiking in Stilettos

Sunday, December 20

gifts for: the avid runner

whether it's a trail run on a sunday or weekend a marathon,
here a few things that just about any runner or athlete would enjoy:

a road id for a sense of security:

a camelbak hydration pack to keep them going during long races:
{also comes in black or blue for the guys}

a pocket cuff to store keys during a run:

a new pair of kicks to start off the new year:

or for a really easy gift,
an itunes gift card to fill their ipods with running tunes:

happy running to you all.

copyright Hiking in Stilettos

Saturday, December 19

never have i ever

seen a herd of longhorn cattle,
driven clear across the state of oklahoma,
watched a tumbleweed cross the road,
seen a windmill farm in person,
awaken to an enormous buck in the front yard,
watched a group of rams jump across a mountain side.

until now.

husband and i have driven halfway across the country
to enjoy winter in colorado,
and experienced all these things and more.

be back very soon with more gift guides,
and exciting pictures from our trip.

copyright Hiking in Stilettos

Thursday, December 17

"Ga Ga ooh la la"

Word up, folks. It's Ashley from Kindredly, and A asked me to fill in for her while she's incommunicado. For whatever reason, I have the hardest time coming up with something "worthy" enough for Hiking in Stilettos, but today I've got it.

Lady GaGa.

I posted about my love for Lady G on Kindredly last month. I love her. Some people think she's too much. Some people think she's weird. I think she's too much, and I think she's weird -- but I L.O.V.E. it. I love all her crazy hairdos and outfits and songs. She just throws it out there for us all to accept or reject. I've accepted it so much that I've practially morphed into a blonde with a bow permanently fixed on top of my head.

My girlfriend, Kim, called me to let me know Lady GaGa was coming to Atlanta December 28 & 29, and when they went on sale, they sold out in minutes. We realized we were going to have to go through a ticket broker to go, and we'd pay more....and we did, and we're going. On December 29, I will be at the Fox dancing and singing my face off. I. Can't. Wait.

In preparation for Lady G's arrival, I've done a little shopping. I figured my outfit couldn't just be jeans and a cute top (although, that is totally fine for some, just not me), so I scoured the internet for inspiration and ideas. The only thing I could up with was GLITTER!!! and SEQUINS!! Give me something shiny!!

Hiking in Stilettos featured a
sequin post that I drooled over. Re-check it. I want that sequin strapless dress for my upcoming Vegas trip!

With the sparkly idea in mind, I ended up with this...

This is the "Sequin Extravaganza Skirt" from Forever21, which you know is questionable online. I can't tell if something is going to be heinous in person when I shop their site, so I just buy it and send back if it looks cheap. Their online return policy is flexible, and they're quick getting your money back to you. The measurements of this skirt.....are 12"x 30". The 12" being the length (of course because a 12" waist would be a preposterous idea for me). For the record, my ass is probably 12.5". The gym hasn't kicked in that quickly. My plan is to pair it with black tights and this....

This is the "String Back Top" from F21, which is also going for $42 at Lulus, btw. It's loose fitting to help balance out the shortness of the skirt (this is my plan, at least), and I got it for a steal at $17.

Finally, because it's December (and I'm no longer in college wearing backless shirts and short skirts), I'm layering this on top...

I blogged about this blazer from Urban a few months ago. It was originally $68, but I got it on sale for $35. I feel very MJ when I wear it. I got it in a small, but it's a little baggy. Again, this will only help with a 12" long skirt.

I'll finish up the outfit with my black booties and maybe a hairbow fixed perfectly on top of my head....

Thoughts? Suggestions? You are all such fashionistas!

Tuesday, December 15

gifts for: the outdoorsy man

i love christmas.
i also love giving christmas presents,
especially when you know it's something that
the other person is really going to love.

sometimes it's a bit hard to figure out exactly what a great present would be.
so i have a few lists that will hopefully give you some ideas.

if you have someone on your list who spends his saturdays
riding mountain bikes, running on trails, kayaking,
hiking, adventure racing, cycling, or camping,
then the following gift ideas are where you want to be.

a paracord tactical bracelet
{it unwinds to 10 feet of tough parachute cord if you are ever in a bind.}

a headlamp to light the way

a moosejaw hoodie to keep him warm

a watch that does it all: the garmin forerunner

or, for an easy shipping option, how about a magazine subscription
i can recommend both of these for providing great trip ideas
for every part of the country.
a gift he is sure to love.

copyright Hiking in Stilettos

Thursday, December 10

an extra special christmas

our little apartment is brimming with christmas spirit,
smelling of pine needles, warm and inviting,
celebrating our first christmas together.

colored button lights
and a parliament of owls on the mantle

a vintage inspired tree
complete with a few vintage ornaments

here's wishing you a holiday season
surrounded by those whom you love.

copyright Hiking in Stilettos

Tuesday, December 8

oh, ellen

one of the good things about finals week
is that i am back home by about lunchtime every day.
this means that i am at home when ellen show airs.

i love ellen degeneres.
i think she is absolutely hilarious.
i watched her show last year during my workout hour,
and i almost fell off the treadmill from laughing.
not only is the show incredible comic relief from a mound of schoolwork,
ellen gives so much away to people who really need help.
she gave a car, christmas money, a gas card, and some extra cash
to a single mom who couldn't afford to provide christmas for her children this year.

during december ellen also does "12 days of giveaways"
where she gives ridiculously incredible prizes to the people in the audience.
we're talking digital cameras, gift cards to target, qvc, barnes & noble,
laptops, palm pixis, lcd tvs, photo printers...
you get the idea.
so yesterday i was watching and taking a break from studying,
when she broke my heart just a little bit.
{i know this is really quite silly, so don't laugh at me...}
she gave away a red kitchenaid mixer to everyone in the audience.
a red stand mixer that would be so perfect in my kitchen.
i didn't care about the camera, the printer, or the hdtv.
just the mixer.

{note, that this is after i found out that my "discount" at macy's
is only 10% which really doesn't help, so i decided not to get one.}

so i will watch ellen today with a slightly saddened heart.
if only i could teleport to los angeles to go to the show.

i do think that a {post-pharmacy school} trip to cali is in order.
and when that trip comes around,
you better believe the ellen show is on my list.


images courtesy of the ellen degeners show
copyright Hiking in Stilettos

Monday, December 7

outerwear outings

living in the south i really don't have need of a winter coat.
we do experience some pretty cold days during january and february,
but it is nothing compared to the snowy north.

since i would need to spend quite a bit
to find a nice wool coat that actually fits me well,
i often settle for more trendy versions at lower price points.

i found this lovely guy on sale at h&m earlier this year.
he made his fashion debut this past week
for husband's office christmas party and for church on sunday.

it's a great piece at a great price,
definitely warm and snug, and pretty versatile.
the over sized collar is my favorite part.
it looks best buttoned all the way up like a cowl neck
{which isn't shown in either of these pictures}
and the belt helps to hide the fact that it's a little too big.

since our snowfall may consist of six inches on a good year,
and the really cold weather only lasts a few months,
it is completely unjustifiable to spend a lot on a winter coat.
as much as i absolutely love the one from anthropologie,
it's just not practical to spend that much when i live in the south.

one day when we move north or west,
i am sure i will invest in a more durable winter coat,
but for now i will stick with h&m, f21, and the bp department at nordstrom

where do you go to find affordable winter coats?

copyright Hiking in Stilettos