M Says I Do!


 ^^^isn't she just a doll?!^^^
 ^^^lost some tears right about here^^^
 ^^^one of my long time favorites!^^^
 ^^^pda alert!^^^
 ^^^ her daddy serenaded the newlyweds with the saxophone!^^^
 ^^^my east coast girls^^^

A few weekends ago I was lucky enough to witness love conquer distance and time yet again! One of my college besties said I do to her love of over a decade. Maybe I have an extra soft spot for their story because it rings so close to my own. American girl meets boy with an accent (this one's German though) and falls head over heels, madly and senselessly in love. Yes, there were many years of hardship and more obstacles to overcome than most young love should have to endure... but they stood the trial of time and distance, making their relationship all the stronger. And so the rest is history and now a new chapter in their romance begins, one where they get to live in the same country! And believe me when I say no one could be happier for the newlyweds than me. I love you both :)

***Today I am thankful that I was able to witness another one of my best friends get married... she was beautiful and he so handsome***


All Work & Some Fun...


top: madewell (similar) / pants: c/o hudson / shoes: mossimo via target / watch: fossil / bracelet: mint julep / nails & toes: essie (geranium)

A while back I got to have a little fun at work (shocker, I know!) and brainstorm with the marketing team on new features for our instagram account. One of the ideas I pitched was showcasing the various ways the staff wear the same pieces since we all happen to already own a lot of the same styles. I'm always inspired and pleasantly surprised at how some of my fellow colleagues style the very same pieces I own, completely different from anything I would've thought to do. My love for self expression through fashion is what caught me noticing this at work and has even helped me stretch my own styling skills. First up, a cropped skinny cargo pant... something I wouldn't normally wear myself so a bit of a toughie! I did my research and checked out some of my favorite instagramers for inspiration, finally landing on this look. If you know me, you know I love anything with hints of masculinity so the cargo pant naturally worked with my style. It also helped for my petite frame that these were skinny and cropped so they wouldn't overwhelm my body. I decided to pair the cargos with a silky button down shirt (button down shirts are kinda my jam) and make it a little more girly by adding a pair of wedges. The look embodied a tomboy chicness that was very much me and super comfy. Check out how my fellow design ladies styled their cargos here!

Pics by: Arnelle Lozada for Hudson

***Today I am thankful for fashion... mock if you must, but it's truly great to be able to dress like your best self ***


Facing Life...


hat: biltmore via madewell / sunglasses: warby parker / jacket: hudson / dress: lush via modcloth / bralette: honeydew via madewell / vans via madewell / purse: camden market / watch: michael kors (similar)

Oh hey, look at that... a blog post is happening, finally! So this time things got real bad you guys, I mean my blog didn't just flat line... it died. My last post was over four months ago (which I have yet to finish the recap but let's not even go there) and the year 2015 holds the record for least posts in that year with a whopping nine, 10 if you count this one. And we all thought 2014 (23 posts) was bad. But it gets worse. See the thing is, on one of my blogging kicks, I got overly enthusiastic and decided that the time had come for me to get an actual domain because I meant serious business. So that was great and all, until it came time for the auto-renewal and well, the card that had been linked had been lost (thanks hubs!) and I just never got around to updating it all so... beeeeeeeep. What I mean is that sure, I've gone on hiatus before and disappeared from this virtual world, but my blog (and past) was always visible. Not this time though because the domain gods decided that since I hadn't paid, well my blog wouldn't be visible, period. It was like it never even existed. Made With Love went completely off the grid which is maybe a bit symbolic with how I've been feeling. You know when you're so far deep in that sad place that you don't even have the energy to fix the things you see going wrong right before your very own eyes. Yea, like that...

And then there was the time I posted this, and then this, and then finally this. Instagram quickly became my main outlet, with posts getting lengthier and more raw at times. Being able to share just the right amount at just the right times made it my go to and even then I faltered some. Also how crazy is it that I've had a kitty, Brooklyn Archer Beale, for over eight months and I have yet to introduce him to you guys. Of course since his arrival I've become all sorts of crazy cat lady (literally) and yes, he has his own Instagram account where we are working on making him super famous because raw, organic food ain't free kitty! Brooks, as I like to call him, came into my life at just the perfect time too and one day I'll get around to telling you all that story. Believe me, the fact that I chose to name him after one of my favorite places is not lost on me either. Future life goals: get Brooklyn (and me) to Brooklyn!

In the rather short time that I've been 30, I've managed to lose two different credit cards (one was actually hubs and one I later found in my pocket but that was after I had already canceled it), lost my license (that was thankfully found and returned to me by some kind anonymous stranger), had my taxes f*ed up so we ended up owing Uncle Sam a good ol' chunk of change, been the victim of credit card fraud (who spends so much at Home Depot?), been in a minor fender bender while waiting at a red light (really Beyonce was fine though), gone through two rounds of anti-biotics for a sinus infection, had numerous colds/allergies/migraines/tension headaches (basically falling apart at the seams over here), started projecting onto others (whoops!), started really hating on my job and LA and pretty much everything else you can think of, tested my marriage to the brink of no return (almost) along with my sanity, and written this annoyingly long run-on paragraph of a sentence. Impressive, I know! And here I was determined to have a good year.

But it took all that, a lot of tears (A LOT), and a mural of a face that triggered the pun about about facing life (I don't even like puns) to help me start seeing things clearly again. I had to fall way, way down and hit the rock bottom of all rock bottoms to realize there's no where left to go but up. All my self destructive tendencies had, well, destructed everything so now I am ready to rebuild. It's like my therapist says... or she will say once I've found her because when in LA...

So that was a lot of rambling and I hope it didn't scare you from coming back. They won't all be like this, I promise. But some will be because I'm realistic enough to know that nothing worth having ever comes easy and set backs are expected. What can I say except that "I just want to be ok, be ok, be ok. I just want to be ok today" since that's been the soundtrack that's been playing on repeat in my brain for the last year or so. Yep, I've totally cracked but it's ok :)

PS- street art: face mural by Vhils / located: 1103 Abbot Kinney Blvd, Venice CA 90291 (junk food store)

***Today I am thankful for Ingrid Michaelson for really hitting the nail on the head with that song!***


Cabernet Sauvignon...


jacket: current elliot / cardigan: madewell / turtleneck: madewell (similar) / jeans: hudson / shoes: madewell / backpack: everlane

There's something truly magical about strolling through vineyards, especially while tipsy. It felt like the Disneyland of adults. Everything was perfectly manicured and eerily beautiful. With a full wine glass in hand, the birds chirping, and my love by my side, my little heart was content. Yes, it was just like the Disney I remember as kid, only better! Now how can I get back there...

***Today I am thankful for cabernet sauvignon... and well, and the reds really!***


Travel Guide: Wine Country, Day 2


DO & DRINK / One of our top priorities was hitting up a winery, duh! Our lovely airbnb host Pamela had the a few listed in her handy welcome packet that she left for us and Benziger Winery was at the top of the list, so naturally we chose that one! Specifically known for its wine grown in a number of eco friendly ways, ranging from certified sustainable, organic, and biodynamic vineyards, this was a wine experience I could definitely get on board with. Everything we came across in the beautiful fields had been set up for a carefully structured eco system to ensure the best tasting wines. We saw sheep that grazed the grassy lots, keeping it all nice and trim. There were olive and lemon trees to help stop the soil from eroding. We even spotted owl boxes nestled up high to help keep the pests at bay. The sun shined down on us as we rode around the grounds in one of those cute little cars and made pit stops every so often to savor delicious wine.

 ^^^wooden barrels for wine safe keeping^^^
 ^^^the best smell ever in these wine caves- damp, oak & wine!^^^
The vineyard offers plenty of tours and tastings to choose from and we opted for the Partners Vineyard Tour & Exclusive Wine Tasting and couldn't have been happier with it. We got to learn (and taste!) a lot plus get an exclusive behind the scenes look at the biodynamic vineyards to fully understand all the care that goes into crafting those fine wines. The tour was small and intimate with only 8 guests total plus the quirkiest tour guide ever. When I had called earlier to book ahead (suggested since they book up fast!) I was warned that a couple would be getting engaged on ours and if we would mind... Mind?!? I was beyond excited and even decided I would take pictures to send my new friends via email, would I mind. I guess some people had in the past and so the winery had to just put it out there... you know, just in case. So of course the whole time I was whispering to hubs about who it might be and informing him that my detective skills concluded that neither of the two other girls had engagement rings so really it was anyone's game. Hubs kept telling me to shush, less I be overheard (his words, not mine). We ended in the coolest of wine caves, literally... they were super cool! The smell that smacked me in the face was one of damp musk with deep warm oak and hints of wine, all lingering together, leaving me breathless. I really couldn't get enough and have decided that someone needs to make the scented candle version of this asap!

 ^^^and the winner is: 2012 de coelo, terra neuma pinot noir^^^
 ^^^also known as a dangerous room where all your dreams can come true!^^^
Well the tour came to an end and you can imagine my disappointment when no one had proposed... Case of the cold feet perhaps? I did a little further investigating with a now tipsy tour guide lady and turns out she had suggested taking them to another wine cave after for a more intimate moment. I mean, it does sound perfect except my new friends had no one to capture the moment but oh well, I'm sure they weren't too bothered. Also can we talk about perks of the job?! Where do I sign up to tour guide? Drive a cute little cart around luscious grounds AND drink on the job... I'm in! After the tour guide was over, we each parted ways and hubs and I bee-lined to the tasting room to try more wines, duh! We got served by a quirky old lady that spent most of our time together sized us up before deciding at the end that she liked us. She also may have given us a few extra try and she also may have been kind of tipsy but who's paying attention at this point anymore, really? Hubs and I enjoyed her great banter and then headed back outdoors to sip our wine of choice looking onto the lake.

 ^^^drunken purchases with guaranteed no buyers remorse^^^

And of course no trip to the winery would be complete without some drunken shopping for more wine. Hubs and I pleasantly agreed on the same wines which I was surprised about since normally he opts for sweeter and I like the drier ones. After much trying and deliberating, we settled on these as our top four, listed in ranking order and also no judging please! 

EAT / A day of wine tasting and sun soaking surely does build up quite an appetite so hubs and I decided to check this little gem out. Glen Ellen Inn was the perfect spot to indulge in some martinis (they have a huge selection and it was time to switch up) while we talked about the highlights of our day. The atmosphere was cozy and inviting in this not quite indoor, not quite outdoor section they had since it was still much too cold to sit in their garden area. I settled for the mussels and garlic fries and hubs chose the halibut in parchment, both equally tasty. Fun fact: hubs and I usually agree on ordering our mutual top two and then go halfsies... except this one time when I thought we weren't I ate almost all my food before realizing hubs was ready to switch and I nothing left to offer, but that's another story.

*On him---> coat: banana republic / blazer: banana republic / button down: j. crew / trousers: j. crew / shoes: tba / backpack: everlane (similar)

*On her---> jacket: current elliot / cardigan: madewell / turtleneck: madewell / jeans: hudson / shoes: madewell / backpack: everlane

Day 1 / Day 2 / Day 3 / Day 4 

***Today I am thankful for the chance to explore a lovely new town and loyal sidekick/drinking buddy to do it all with!***

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