Hello?  Is anyone there?

Hi.  You may not remember me but I’m the former blogger who disappeared into oblivion 5 months ago without a trace.  Where did I go you might ask.  What have I been doing you may inquire.  Well, to quote the great Donna Summer: she works hard for the money.

The day job got the better of me.  I love what I do, and think I’m damn good at it.  But I definitely have been earning my paycheck lately.  Countless late nights in front of a computer screen and over 30,000 miles flown proved difficult to make time for dinner, let alone playing amateur decorator and blogger.

But I’ve missed you all!  And missed making things pretty which my life could definitely use a little more of lately.  So in the coming weeks I will begin to emerge from hibernation.  Frequency and consistency, however, is not the name of this game so bear with me while I get back in the swing of things and find a little more blogging balance in my life.

Bonus – I already have some fun projects stored in my digital attic that I’ve been unintentionally hiding from you!  Backyard?  Done!  Living room rearrange?  Done!  New artwork?  Done and done!

So for now while you patiently await my next impromptu appearance (as I certainly fail to plan these things lately), here are a few personal highlights from my otherwise very professional last few months, courtesy of my dear friend and companion Instagram:

Jefe & I headed to Seattle in May:
Seattle 2015

Seattle 2015 2

Then I headed to NY for 2/3 of the month of June:

NYC 2015

NY 2015 1

 

 

Insta - NYC Bridge

Finding Neverland

But over the weekends, I’d hop the train to head home to Lancaster, PA for much needed reunions with family & friends.

Lancaster Summer 2015
Besties 2015

Insta - Casey & I

Once I got back, I did manage to find a few moments for a little beauty while at home.  It was peony season after all!

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Jefe & I spent my second favorite holiday at the Hollywood Bowl:

July 4th 2015

Insta - July 4th

And later in July we headed to Anaheim for the annual Red Sox / Angels match up.  The Wells men came to represent:

Red Sox Anaheim 2015

We also experienced the first Anaheim cancellation due to rain in over 20 years!

Red Sox Anaheim 2015 2

A few weeks later I headed out to the Rhode Island Film Festival for work:

RIFF 2

RIFF 1

After all that travel Jefe and I tried to escape for a few days.  But an excruciating LA heat wave kept us from the beach and Disneyland so we escaped inside to the LA Natural History Museum.  Dinos!

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Later in August, Jefe & my friend John and I hit up the LA Food & Wine Festival, complete with a performance by The Roots!  This picture does NOT do it justice; we were 15 feet from the stage!

The Roots!

Once September hit, I was knocked off my butt by a serious cold & cough.  But I had to suck it up as it was time to run the 5K I had been prepping for with Jefe & my brother who came to visit just for the occassion.  It was brutal, but I made it.  Slow and limping wins (well, at least completes) the race.

Dodgers 5K 1

Dodgers 5K 2

And like the good USC alums we are, we headed to the SC vs. Stanford game with our friend John.

USC Football

Two weeks ago I left for a 9 day business trip to attend a few film festivals.  I was pretty stoked to travel internationally for the first time since I was 16!

Bon Voyage!

Bon Voyage! 2I also happened to fall head over heels in L-O-V-E with London.  I’ve already plotted how Jefe and I could change careers to make the move.  L-O-V-E.

Insta - Trafalgar Square

Insta - London Bingo

 

London 2015

Insta - Buckingham Tea

Insta - London Eye

Insta - Big Ben

Unfortunately the love affair was short lived as I had to keep on moving.  This time for Vancouver.  Most of this leg was spent either working here:

Insta - Vancouver Bed

…or in screening rooms at the festival.  I did manage to snap this beaut on the way en route to the airport on my last day:

Insta - Vancouver

And this one while landing later that night.City of Angels

I came home carting a handful of gifts for Jefe but he happened to have a surprise for me too!Welcome Home Gifts

I hope everyone had a less eventful, but fulfilling summer!

Happy New Year

Happy New Year friends!  I hope everyone had a restful and relaxing holiday.  I’m still nursing my second cold in the last 3 weeks so it’s been slow going on the restart here at Chez Sledge.

What is it about the last 2 Decembers that they just flew by?  Another holiday season, I blinked, and next thing you know Jefe and I are hauling our sad, dry skeleton of a Christmas tree to the curb for recycling. We had all sorts of plans this year, most of which we accomplished.  It did, however, leave little time for blogging.  So here’s a little recap of the Holidays with Sledge:

Black Friday – Jefe and I continued our tradition for the 5th year in a row of braving the masses at Disneyland.  It truly is the happiest place on Earth and best place to start getting in to the holiday spirit.  Everything is covered in lights, ornaments and general festiveness.  This year we decided to try out a few new restaurants as we’ve done all of the rides so many times.

After watching CHEF, we were craving beignets and heard raves about those shaped like a Mickey at Cafe Orleans.  Our lunch was delicious, especially Jefe’s Croque Monsieur, but we were left so full that there was no room for beignets.  Sad Mickey :-(.

For dinner we trekked over to California Adventure to Carthay Circle.  It looked like something you’d find in Beverly Hills in the 1920’s.  Just a stunning combination of art deco meets spanish mission.  And the food was good enough to rival any trendy restaurant in Weho.

Disneyland - Sleeping Beauty's Castle

Disneyland - Jefe & Sledge

 

The next day we piled in the car and headed to our favorite tree lot to pick this year’s winning Noble Fir.  After little deliberation, we decided on the fullest pine tree I have ever tried to decorate.  He stood about 7 feet tall.  We debated whether we could have gone taller, but the 8-9 foot Firs were not looking nearly as Noble.

Chauvet Farms Tree Stand - Culver City

The Noblest of Firs

We invited Jefe’s parents over that night to help decorate and quickly realized that next year, we can definitely go with a taller tree thanks to our 9-foot high ceilings, but I’m still more than pleased with this year’s selection.

Holiday Coffee Spread

 

A holiday coffee spread to invigorate for tree decorating!

So the next 24 hours we spent decking the halls.  The only new addition to this year’s festive artillery was a $2.99 traditional star tree topper from Ikea and a few ornaments from Disneyland.

Morning Coffee Done Right

Hines Ward Ornament!

 

Xmas Tree 2014

Stockings

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Nutcrackers!

 

More Nutcrackers

 

Nutcrackers!!!

Holiday Cards

 

Little Village

The following weekend Jefe and I jetted off to New York to celebrate my birthday and decorate tree #2, Jefe’s brothers.  We did it last year and it was so fun to be able to continue the tradition this year.  I also managed to drag Jefe to the ballet for the first time to see “The Nutcracker” at Lincoln Center, did some holiday sight-seeing, did an awesome #museumhack tour of the Met and caught up with my high school friend Beth!

The Met

NY Public Library Lions

Rockefeller Tree

The ballet!

SM #1 and #2

This brings us to mid-December already!  After 5 months of living in our new place, we finally decided to host a housewarming / holiday / birthday party.  Things were a little harried prepping for guests so I didn’t manage to get any photos but I can say that Trader Joe’s can make a mean appetizer.  You really can fool anyone in to thinking something was homemade when it’s fresh out of the oven and artfully displayed on a Santa platter.  I’m pretty sure 95% of the food we offered came from TJ’s.  Seriously, it’s the best way to host – no cooking, just artful arrangements.

Falalala

Falalala sign courtesy of Oh Joy!’s line at Target

By the following week, Jefe and I were packing our bags to head back east.  Within the span of 7 days, we slept in 5 beds and traveled via UBER, plane, train and mom’s automobile.  We made merry in Los Angeles, Lancaster and Tyrone, PA and New York City.  It was quite the whirlwind.

Family Cousins

Cousins reunion in Tyrone, PA

Jefe & I Xmas Eve 2014

Jefe & I on Christmas Eve

Casey & his Elf

My brother Casey and his “elf on a shelf” (our nephew Raylen)

And here’s a little tour of my mom’s place all decked out.  I get the Christmas love honestly…

Mom's Dining Room

No fireplace means stockings go on the chairs 😀

Mom's - Dining Room

I love me a good tartan tablecloth!

Mirror on display

I love this old window-turned-mirror.  Wouldn’t be Xmas without some lit garland though.

Mom's Xmas Tree 2014

Excuse the lack of focus.  This was prior to 9am and I hadn’t had ANY coffee yet….

And some of Christmas in NY (Jefe was so bummed he missed the Met #museumhack tour, we went again!):

The Met - Again!

30 Rock

Time Warner Center

And then I caught the plague which had me laid up on my mother’s couch for the next 5 days.  New Years Eve was spent with my family, one good friend who braved my contagion thanks to a hearty dose of antibiotics, and a piping hot mug of green tea.  No champe this year for the Champe Champ.

Then Jefe and I headed back to LA where we undecked the halls and dragged our poor tree out to the curb.  Nothing makes me sadder than seeing Christmas trees on the side of the road.  Their time is so short….

Packing Up

Leftover Candy Canes

We have a lot of candy canes to get through in January….

Boy and his toys

Jefe got distracted from un-decorating by a Christmas present…

And to wrap it all up, one final shot of our beautiful tree of 2014:

Christmas Tree 2014