December in Review 2017

December has been such a busy month for me I thought I'd highlight what I've been up to as an expression of gratitude to celebrate the positive things in my life. December can be a month of reflection so I'm also busy working on my goals for next year, stay tuned for that post. Here's how I experienced the sparkle of the season in our Nations Capital.

1. Wharf Christmas Boats and Fireworks
The new Southwest Waterfront has opened up and they had their annual parade of private boats decorated with lights for Christmas.  I have two friends that live in SW so we went to one's apartment who had a view of the parade and we sipped wine on her balcony. Then we walked down to the wharf to watch the fireworks up close. Afterwards we went to the other's apartment for a homemade Thai dinner and boozy milkshakes.

2. Last Spanish class
I took spanish all throughout school and even spent a couple summers in immersion classes in Mexico and Venezuela. But it's been many years since I've used my Spanish and after my trip to Cuba  I wanted a refresher. I signed up for a weekly class after work with other students my age. We had a fun teacher from Peru who did stand up comedy in his spare time. I definitely felt a lot of my spanish skills coming back and want to take another class next year.

3. Zoolights
My friend told me she wanted to go see the lights she saw on my blog in my Favorite Christmas Activities post. Seeing zoolights has been an annual tradition of mine. The zoo is lit up at night with beautiful LED lights that transform it into a winter wonderland and it's free! I met up with some friends for drinks before heading into the zoo. As per usual, someone always gets lost. You take one picture, turn around and everyone is gone because it's so dark out! lol

4. Office Christmas Party
On the first snow day of the season, our party was held in a hotel on the SW Wharf. I wore an emerald floral lace, floor length gown not realizing when I ordered it online that the back was open and the front was sheer. But I still thought it was feminine and I got a lot of compliments on it. We drank pomegranate Moscow mules and listened to the band while watching people dance.

5. Bookclub
I've been apart of this bookclub for a few years now, but this year I've really gone consistently every month. We only read personal development books and this month's selection was The Big Leap. This group of supportive women creates a no judgement zone as we work on building ourselves up.

6. Christmas Pop-up Bar
Back for it's third year, the Christmas themed bar is back with hours long lines around the block. I was lucky to go early and walk right in! It has five themed rooms, including a gingerbread house, an antique sleigh from the 1800s and a Beyonce mural. The drink menu has names from holiday movies with garnishes like cookie dough or popcorn. The bartenders are all wearing Christmas sweaters. While we were there two police officers walked in so naturally everyone turned around to see what's going on, but they pulled out their phones and started taking pictures! lol So we all started laughing at them and then they realized they looked out of place doing that. lol

7. Flywheel party
I've been going pretty consistently every month to Flywheel, it's an indoor cycling workout made by a former owner of SoulCycle. I'll write a post soon explaining why I like one over the other. The invite read:
Come for class, stay for the party! We’re celebrating the holiday season with food, drinks, and festivities. Enjoy complimentary braids and makeup services, a sommelier-hosted wine tasting, food from Beefsteak, Nosh Bar and Vegetable+Butcher, and chances to win fun prizes!

8. Microwave
Keeping things real I wanted to share one frustrating thing I dealt with. In November my over the range microwave of 10 years died. I'm a meal planner, cooking all my meals on Sunday for the whole week. So I use my microwave a lot to heat up food. So being without a microwave for a month was a huge inconvenience.

The hardest thing was finding a replacement microwave with a curved door handle that would match my other kitchen appliances and cabinets. You can see my kitchen in this video. I thought I'd wait a couple weeks for a black Friday sale, nope not on microwaves. So that was wasted time without a microwave. Then I ordered one only to have shipment delayed, then when it came I didn't open the box because the microwave weighed 50 lbs. I thought I'd wait until the guys come to install it later in the week. Why the microwave comes separately from installation was another question I had.  When the box was finally opened the microwave was white, not stainless steel. Calling Best Buy to fix this was a one hour phone call of being transferred around and put on hold repeatedly. A week later my next microwave arrived, but no one picked up the old one. Had to call again. It was a huge hassle that is finally over!

9. Yards Park - Light Yards
There's a new amazing fast casual Indian restaurant I wanted to check out in Yards Park, and while there also got some boozy eggnog ice cream, then we went to check out  Light Yards. The interactive light installation on the waterfront has four spherical globes, ranging in size from 8 to 22 feet in diameter that light up in the dark, play music, change colors and show moving scenes.

10. Artechouse
It's an interactive digital art gallery with rotating exhibitions every 5 weeks of large scale installations. It was definitely an experience I've never had before as it's a completely new concept to the art scene here. This magical space brings sensory activation with its vividly colored installations. I saw Kingdom of Colors which is a collaboration between multiple artists who used a macro lens to blow up the liquids in motion interacting with one another to a musical soundtrack playing in the background. There were also two additional augmented reality rooms where you could interact with projection art.  It was a beautiful experience. Right now they have a Nutcracker exhibition on display.

11. Georgetown Glow
This is the fourth year Georgetown has displayed outdoor public art installations. I saw it last year for the first time and this year it's completely different! Below is just one of the installations, it's  chromatic rings light up only if you step on them, like in Michael Jackson's Billie Jean video. Before the kids started running around behind me the whole thing was blue.

12. City Center Igloo
Up for one weekend only, the real life ice igloo was so popular it had hour long lines for it. Unfortunately that weekend wasn't quite cold enough and it melted too quickly. But still a pretty cool experience!

13. Capitol & White House Christmas Trees

14. Neighborhood Christmas Light Display

DC has very few houses that decorate like on the tv show  The Great Christmas Light Fight, maybe that's more in suburbia? So it's a treat to see this one house that goes all out every year.

15. Movies
I saw the dark comedy Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri starring Woody Harrelson. The story line is that after months have passed without a culprit in her daughter's murder case, Mildred Hayes makes a bold move, painting three signs leading into her town with a controversial message directed at the town's chief of police. I love watching Dateline's murder mysteries so this was right up my alley. My friends and I saw it at a theater with reclining seats so that was so nice!

16. Botanical Gardens
In December the U.S. Botanic Garden has on display model trains, various kinds of poinsettia in lots of colors and incredible replicas of Washington, DC's most famous buildings and monuments. It stays open until 8:00 pm for concerts on Tuesdays and Thursdays in December. It's free and open on Christmas Eve and Day.

17. Sephora Makeover 
If you're a VIB member you get one free makeover a year. I asked for one with all Hourglass products as I'm new to the line. I love the Ambient Lighting Powder! It gives your skin a beautiful glow while looking matte. It makes your skin look flawless. If you do the math, the mini size is not worth the price. Here's my recommendations on what to do buy at Sephora.

18. Red Nails for the holidays
My mom and I had a mani date. I got dip nails and she got her second gel manicure which she is loving how long they last.

19. Christmas Eve/Day
We had a low key holiday just hanging out at home watching Christmas concerts on TV. My contributions to the meals were a Cranberry Orange Bread  and Cranberry Walnut Baked Brie.

20. NYE Party - Got a pretty red lace dress to wear to my friend's party along with a disco ball sipper cup.
It truly is the most magical time of the year! I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas surrounded by family! Happy New Year!


  1. It sounds like you've had an amazing month! I never knew about all the things you can do in DC in the winter!

  2. What an amazing month! So many fun things and your outfits are gorgeous! The pop up bar would be my favorite - so creative and fun!

  3. Oh my gosh! What an AMAZING month you had! December is so magical. I went to a Christmas boat parade this month too and it was SO fun!

  4. All of these Holiday lights that you saw look amazing! It was a little too cold for us here in New Hampshire and Maine to really go see anything without the kids just complaining about the cold the entire time! Your style through out this month has been AMAZING I must say! That fur coat and the gold pleated skirt are to die for!