FALL BUCKET LIST 2017

 
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Hey y'all! Can you believe that Thanksgiving is NEXT week?! I feel like once November begins, the rest of the year goes by so fast and ends up being a blur. Fall is my absolute FAVORITE time of year. I mean what's not to LOVE?! Sweater weather, scarves & boots, cozy nights at home, changing of the leaves and Pumpkin Spice everything. So, in my attempt to hold on to Fall a little bit longer, I'm sharing my bucket list. 

 

1. Once the weather starts to get cool, I love walking through Central Park to see all the leaves that are changing colors. Walking through The Mall & the Bow Bridge are some of my favorite spots to capture photos. 

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2. Fall isn't complete without a few pumpkins, right?! I love going to the Union Square Green Market this time of year. They have the best selection of fresh produce as well as pumpkins in all sizes and colors. I'll be stocking up on a few for my Thanksgiving tablescape. 

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3. I love to bake, especially around the Holidays. I always make Pumpkin Bread each year, but this year I'm planning to bake a few pies for Thanksgiving as well. What are your favorite recipes to make?

4. Nothing says Fall like scented candles lit on a cozy night at home. (insert wine here) I'm loving these candles from Target. Because you know, who doesn't need another reason to shop at Target?! 

5. I recently learned of a local restaurant that offers Pasta Making Classes here in New York. And I'm excited to make a night of it with my best friend. I actually gifted him this experience for his Birthday last month. So now we just need to pick a date & go! Wine & Carbs....Yes, Please! 

6. The Macy's Thanksgiving Parade is a MUST to experience at least once. But last year I decided to go the night before to see the parade floats being inflated on the Upper Westside. They line the floats up over several city blocks and allow you to walk around getting a sneak peak of all the floats. It was definitely less crowded than the actual parade. And I'm excited to do it again this year! 

7. Hosting Friendsgiving! Since I moved to New York, my roommates and I have hosted Thanksgiving for the past 3 years at our apartment. We love opening our home to anyone who doesn't have a place to go or just isn't able to travel home for the holiday. Bring on the pie & booze!

 

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Hope everyone has a Happy Thanksgiving filled with all the food & surrounded by your friends & family! 

 

XO, Rae 

MY CLOSET MAKEOVER: HOW A PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZER GAVE ME A DREAM SPACE

 

Living in New York City has its perks, but it also comes with a few challenges. And one of those challenges is lack of space and storage within your apartment. Especially closet space (or lack there of) really. 

When I moved to New York, I only brought with me what I could fit inside of an S.U.V. and of course that included my ENTIRE closet. Soon after moving into my city apartment, I realized why Carrie Bradshaw kept her sweaters in her stove. I've considered it, but not sure how my roommates would feel about that. Kidding. 

I have attempted several times to organize my closet in effort to make room in my (very small) space. However, no matter what I've tried, it never seems to make a difference. And over the past 2+ years, clothes have just collected and ended up shoved inside of my closet. Even to the point where clothes were spilling over to the outside of my closet. I couldn't even close my closet door because it essentially became a hanging rack of clothes. 

 

BEFORE

 

But all that changed when I recently partnered with Jamie from Horderly. Jamie is a professional organizer who has a gift for turning your once HOT MESS of a space into a DREAM space. The process was really easy. I first sent Jamie a few photos of my closet for her to evaluate. And then we set a date for her to come to my apartment in person. The day Jamie arrived, we chatted for a bit and she asked a few questions regarding what was in my closet as well as, what I was open to changing. She then began to remove all items from my closet and had me sort through each one to decide if I wanted to keep, purge or donate. This was so satisfying in itself. I had never completely removed everything out of my closet before. And honestly, we found clothes that I had forgotten I even owned. As I separated each item into piles, Jamie was hard at work at re-organizing each piece of clothing that I was keeping, back into my closet.

And there were a few things that Jamie taught me that I feel will help me to keep my closet organized long term. 1. We exchanged all of my plastic hangers for black felt non-slide hangers. (I was skeptical at first) But these are a game changer. They save so much space and aesthetically are pleasing to the eye. 2. Jamie taught me her rule of: 1 IN, 1 OUT. Meaning for each new item you purchase, you have to get rid of one item. I love this concept! Plus, it makes you think about buying new items and decide if you really have a need for them. 3. Categorize items together in your closet. I.e; sweaters together, casual together, activewear together etc. Jamie really made sure to place my clothing items that I wear the most in an accessible place. Which makes it so much easier to get ready in the morning. I no longer have to dig through my closet to find what I'm looking for. 

 

 AFTER

 

I absolutely LOVE my new organized closet! I was in shock on how good it looked after Jamie worked her magic. It was so helpful to have a professional come in with a new perspective to help me realize the potential of the space. And not to mention, Jamie was so fun to work with. Honestly, it was like hanging out with a girlfriend, chatting and sorting through clothes. Only thing that was missing was a glass of wine. 

If you're in need of a closet makeover or any other space organized, make sure to reach out to Jamie.  Or if you just need some organizing inspo, you can follow her over @horderlynyc on Instagram. 

XO, Rae 

 

NYC LIVING: 12 RULES OF LIVING IN NEW YORK

 

 

Living in New York City isn't always easy. Although most New Yorkers couldn't imagine living anywhere else, including myself. It takes a certain amount of patience and resilience to live here. However, there are some ways to make the day to day life in the city easier. 


1. MASTER THE ART OF PACKING FOR THE DAY

A typical day in New York can consist of many things; including work, a gym session, happy hour or even a night out to dinner and a Broadway show. Packing a bag for the day is essential. Because often times you don't have time to make the trip home in between activities. I usually carry with me everything from a change of clothes, dry shampoo, extra pair of shoes, make up bag, a book, hair brush and phone charger. Most places including restaurants have bag check so you never have to worry about having your hands full when out somewhere. 

2. DRESS IN LAYERS

No matter the season here in the New York, you will often find yourself constantly stuck between hot & cold. Being that you will spend most of your time outside, you never know what the weather may bring. Wearing layers that you can remove or add is key. This way you can be comfortable no matter what the temperature is outside or even inside.

3. ALWAYS CARRY CASH

Although we live in the world of debit cards and Venmo. There are still many places in the city that ONLY accept cash. Bodegas, your favorite food truck and even some restaurants. Always carry cash, you never know when you may need it. 

4. ACCEPT THE FACT THAT YOU WILL ALWAYS BE RUNNING LATE

New Yorkers may often seem like they're in a hurry. And that's because more often than not, they are. Walking blocks and avenues, hailing cabs and chasing after the Subway is exhausting. No matter how much you plan ahead, you can't predict traffic or the MTA for that matter.

5. LEARN DIRECTIONS (CROSS STREETS) 

When it comes to directions, New Yorkers go by streets and not addresses. Even when taking a cab, make sure to know the cross streets of your destination. Because chances are high your cab driver won't know the physical address if given by itself. 

6. TIP YOUR DELIVERY GUY

The holy grail of New York City is delivery. You can get Chinese takeout, weekly groceries or even a bottle of wine delivered right to your apartment door. But having this luxury, means someone else is doing the work. Which often includes schlepping through the snow, rain and even up five flights of stairs. Make sure to tip accordingly. 

7. FIND FREE THINGS TO DO IN THE CITY

It's no secret that living in New York is expensive. However, there is always something to do in the city and often times it can come with little to no cost. It's all about staying up to date on the latest events and FREE things to do in NYC. Year round there are free concerts, festivals, street fairs, free museum days and more that don't have to break the bank. 

8. DON'T TAKE UP THE SIDEWALKS

New Yorkers walk with a purpose. And if given the chance they may in fact run you over if you're in their way. In order to avoid this, steer to the right when walking on the sidewalks, in order to let people pass you on the left. And NEVER stop in the middle of the sidewalk. Step to the side if needed so foot traffic can keep moving. This is basic NYC etiquette

9. BE NICE TO THE SUPER OF YOUR BUILDING

The Super of your apartment building is essentially responsible for any and all maintenance. At some point or another you may need your Super for any one of these things: re-caulk your shower, kill a rodent or even help you get into your apartment after locking yourself out. So needless to say, it pays to be nice to your Super because you never know when you may need him to come to your rescue.


10. NEVER GET ON THE EMPTY TRAIN CAR

There is no worse feeling than when you realize that you just stepped into any empty train car. Leaving you with no choice but to wait it out until the next stop. Because it means one of two things: either there is a homeless person making that train car their home for the night or the A/C isn't working and you're going to be sweating for the next few minutes until you reach the next stop. Neither of which make for a pleasant train ride.

11. TAKE A CAB AFTER MIDNIGHT

Remember when your parents used to tell you, nothing good happens after midnight. Well, this applies to the Subway in New York City. Not only will it take you twice as long to get home, but you'll most likely have to sit next to the homeless guy or the girl who can't hold her liquor. Taking a taxi is totally worth the extra money spent.

12. MAKE TIME TO ESCAPE THE CITY

New York can take a toll on you with long work hours and the constant hustle of the city. So it's important to take advantage of any downtime you have. Whether you take a day to Netflix and chill, spend an afternoon at Central Park or book a weekend getaway, do it often. 

 

What are some rules of living in NYC that you've adopted?  

 

XO, Rae

NYC LIVING: COLUMBUS CIRCLE NEW UNDERGROUND SHOPS & EATS

 

If there is one thing I have learned while living in New York City, it's that convenience is EVERYTHING. The days are longer and you're constantly on the go here. Especially when it comes to meals. Hence, why there are so many food trucks in the city. My favorite is the coffee and bagel carts. Perfect for the days when you're literally running across the street to get to the office on time. So it's fitting that there is now something even more convenient that has recently opened up at Columbus Circle.

Turnstyle is an underground dinning and shopping experience. Located under Columbus Circle at the corner of 57th/58th Street & 8th Avenue. 

 

I recently visited the new underground shops & eats and was impressed with all it has to offer. Imagine a row of pop-up style restaurants and retail spaces with easy access for on the go shopping and dinning. I was immediately drawn to the vibrant and colorful atmosphere. It was also very clean and more spacious than I anticipated it to be. I recognized a few places right away but was also excited to see some unfamiliar ones.

Everything from:  

DOUGHNUTTERY

BYSUZETTE

GASTRONOMIE 49

PRESSED JUICERY

Just to name a few. 

And for the days you are in need of a gift for that special someone or on your way to a friend's dinner party. Don't show up empty handed! There are several great shops to pick up a great gift. I especially love PAPYRUS and LUSH.  If you need a sugar fix, there is even a DYLAN'S CANDY BAR. And if you've had a long day and not sure if your roommate drank the last of the wine at home. Luckily, there is also a wine shop that you can stop at to grab a bottle before getting on the subway home.  

For a full list of shops and eats go to turn-style.com.

 

XO, Rae