Travel + NYC

Week Round-Up

September 5th, 2014

More like the 2.5 week round up. Whatever. Details, details.

Things have been hopping over here at Craft Box! Here’s a fast catch-up:

People are into making and documenting memories over at You&Me Concierge, formerly HowAboutWe. I think I’ve sent, literally, over 100,000 of those little white pieces of paper for folks to jot their memories down on. It is kind of neat to be just a little part of their memory-making.

Sugar & Cloth chose to include our DIY Amethyst bottle stoppers & gold glitter heart bag kits in their goodie bags at their floral workshop this weekend. If you’re in or around the Houston area SIGN UP. Seriously. And then I’ll just marinate over here in my jealousy that you get to attend.

Lastly, we sent out these French lavender mini spa Bridesmaid Boxes just before the holiday weekend. I was also jealous of the recipients of these guys. They smelled so yummy.

Apparently I need to work on jealousy issues.

OH! And after working through much of our most recent vacation I almost punted my computer and my Cricut out of the house, across the deck, to a final resting place in the ocean. I controlled my rage {apparently another issue?} and I bought myself // Craft Box a new MacBook Pro! Before Paul left for work that morning he coached me through exactly which one I needed and proceeded to instruct me on how to politely, but firmly, refuse an upsell. So that’s what I did. And then I got the wrong computer. Thank God the training man helped me before we opened the box. I don’t know much about hard drives and giga bytes and stuff. But I did get that my amount of GB used on old computer > what was available on my new one. And that, my friends, is obviously no bueno. We worked it out, I upgraded and here I am. Type, type, typing away on this new puppy! Neat, right?

Paul & I did have a great vacation, though. Xander was, generally, a sweet car companion which we were thankful for as he has ridden in a car approximately 5 times. He’s a train dude. Despite lots of work on our plates we managed to escape, sans child {thanks Nana & Papaw!} to The Sanctuary at Kiawah Island. It was hotter than blue blazes {OMG I’M MY MOM} but it was gorgeous. And we got to have dinner in Charleston with two sweet friends. It is always nice when folks carve out time for you. Especially when they live in a little piece of heaven. People are always at your door! While we were gone my 73 year old dad {okay, I lied, he is 73 in one week} asked my mom to show him how to change a diaper. YOU GUYS. I have four brothers and sisters and Xander had 9 cousins precede his birth. We couldn’t stop laughing. But he sure liked getting Xander into that ergobaby and parading him up and down the beach.

Paul-&-Xander-BeachPaul & Xander on the Beach

Beach Baby

Xander Hysterical
I live for this belly laugh.

We returned to Virginia for the week and impatiently awaited the arrival of my brother Bryan, sister-in-law Laura, and my nieces Reese & Hannah.

Hannah pushing Xander back from morning coffee.

Hannah, 18 months
Xander, 5 months
Reese, 3 years

This is the best we could do. Too much cuteness in one photo!

We had so much fun! I am so excited to watch Xander grow up with his cousins. Both on my side of the family and Paul’s. Xander also went to his first Crabbers game!

Crabbers-GameXander’s First Crabbers Game

Also, Miss America is next weekend. In my past life I was a Miss NY who got to prance around on stage in a swimsuit on national television. I also did way more impactful things, like visit an AIDS support group made up of incarcerated men and talk about life, goals, and fears. Anyway, Paul threw out the idea of having a Miss America watch party at random the other evening. I thought I had fallen down and hit my head. He has confirmed that I didn’t hit my head. Weird.

That is how my brain works. Rarely a linear thought process. Way too much information. But I’m glad I’ve emptied my brain. I’ve got to go play with hearts and cupcakes now! Engagement Party countdown t-1 day!


XX Leigh-Taylor

holiday vacation. the last of its kind.

January 6th, 2014

Nothing can throw you back into the realm of reality like a 5:20am wake up call and a good butt-kicking from Becca at Soul Cycle. Just like that our 2014 work year was jump started! Luckily our finish line always has a latte reward from Jack’s Coffee and a nice walk back home with my guy before reality totally sets in. Kind of different from the Chicago Marathon finish line earlier this year. So, that’s a plus.

I took time away from the blog as we celebrated our last mini-holiday without our own little mini-munch. Our rascal is due to join our adventure in just over 2 months and we have so much to do before he does so. And I can’t wait to share much of it with you all! Included in that “so much” is … are you ready? … the launch of Craft Box DIY to Go e-commerce! CB by LT subscription & a la carte kits galore! Within a month our site that has taken, without a stretch, much of my blood sweat & tears, will be hitting the interwebs. Somewhere in the midst of that we will be moving {and by in the midst of that I mean this weekend} and I have 2 baby showers. Pre-holiday I casually hinted a bit of stress to my mom and she ever so wisely {per usual} pointed out that all of these things were that of celebration and joy reminding me of a life full of blessings. And so I will not allow myself to stress {at least not too much!}.

As I mentioned in a previous post we drove down to Virginia to celebrate Christmas with my family and on Christmas morning my mom, dad, Paul, and I took off for Jackson Hole, Wyoming {and the weather apparently followed us home!}. It was absolutely gorgeous. We ate a ton of good food, went on a tour through Yellowstone in a souped up vehicle, and I was able to go snow shoeing twice! Paul was on the ski slopes but I wasn’t really allowed due to the high risk {read: potential} of falling. But the snow shoeing was an awesome substitute and a great little workout, too! Below are a few of our favorite pictures from our time there.






We rounded out our trip by ringing in the New Year with friends & family at the Hampton Yacht Club. Being completely sober ringing in the New Year and watching adults an average of 18 years older than you attempt to dance while under the influence is pretty hysterical. It also automatically makes you the taxi driver for the evening. So there’s that.

{My first attempt at a selfie. Yikes.}

And then we picked up our little one’s crib! We found a crib on craigslist that was in great condition and was being sold for a third of the price. SOLD! I even did a little negotiating.

Paul & I spent the last couple of days balancing productivity with a little bit of lazy. One of our last available weekends for acceptable laziness and spontaneity. We also did something I’ve been getting so excited about: we opened our memory jar! It was so much fun to remind ourselves of all of the things we did, said, and laughed at throughout 2013. I would share some of them but it seems so many of our favorites were those that were every day happenings. That’s why we did it! To remind ourselves of the small but memorable things we did throughout the year that brought us such happiness. We of course had some big ones, too! {Saturday October 5th: Paul feels Baby Sig move for the very first time!}. We’ve already got our jar started for 2014 and I’m already looking forward to sitting down and going through those memories.

I am so excited about a year full of change, excitement, and a whole lot of crafting. I’m ready for 2014!



XX Leigh-Taylor

6 years in nyc.

August 19th, 2013

Just a couple of months after graduating from UVa I moved to the Big Apple with the intention of staying up to 5 years. It’s somewhat of an arbitrary time frame but I felt like it gave me enough time to explore and get the big city bug out of my system. Six years later {yesterday!} I’m still here with no plan of leaving any time soon. Do I want a house and a backyard sometimes? Of course. Do I wish I could go to the grocery store and be able to throw the bags into the back of a car? Sure. Do I love being able to walk out my building’s doors and have endless options for an adventure that day? No doubt.

Screen shot 2013-08-19 at 2.17.39 PM

Here are 25 things I’ve learned while living in New York about myself & this amazing place:

1. You can’t rely on the MTA to get you anywhere in a timely manner. Especially on the weekends.

2. Don’t let others define you. Create your own identity.

3. Giving up your dreams for someone isn’t “compromising”. Dreams are meant to be shared.

4. The city smells like an armpit from June – September. Don’t worry, you’ll get used to it.

5. New Yorkers are nice. But here’s a tip: don’t stop in the middle of the sidewalk to read your map.

6. Run or bike along the West Side Highway as often as possible.

7. There are loads of rats, cockroaches, and mice. Two of which most likely share your apartment with you. If you feel a little tickle on your toes {or face in Carlie’s experience … too soon?} it probably isn’t your bed mate …

8. Don’t limit yourself. Don’t allow others to limit you.

9. There are streets in Manhattan that aren’t just numbers. And Houston is not pronounced like the city in Texas but HOW-STON. Just a word to the wise.

10. Don’t be surprised if you could grab a soda from your refrigerator without ever getting off of your couch pull-out bed while watching television. That’s called a studio. I lived in one of them for a year. {Also, don’t be shocked to see the size of closets. In my second apartment I was sure I would only be able to fit 5 coats in my closet. You can make it work.}

11. Stand up for yourself. And have the discretion to know when to just let it go. Some things, or people, just are not worth that energy.

12. Go to sample sales. Proceed with caution. {I got knocked over at my first sample sale, Nanette Lepore, but I did get a really cute dress.}

13. Know when to let unhealthy friendships go. It’s just a part of growing up.

14. Magnolia does not have the best cupcakes in the city. It’s Billy’s. All Billy’s.

15. Don’t stare at the girl {or guy} crying on the street. It will, no doubt, be you at some point in your time here.

16. It’s always hard to be far away from your family. But you quickly learn that your friends in New York become your family.

17. The only cheap things here are flowers & manicures.

18. Business issued cell phones are leashes.

19. Go on a date with someone you didn’t exactly imagine yourself with when growing up. Who knows, you may just be lucky enough to marry them. {Me, me!}

20. Serve others. I feel strongly that true servants don’t need to promote their efforts. Facebook & Twitter don’t care. The people you impact do.

21. Live in the present.

22. Don’t always try to please others.

23. Go to drunk brunch.

24. Allow yourself to be happy.

25. And finally, moms are always right. Even when you’re sure they’re wrong. Trust me, they’re right.

Here’s to an open mind & many more years of exploration!


XX Leigh-Taylor

a weekly round-up.

May 31st, 2013

I hope everyone has had a great week! I promise I haven’t been totally MIA. I have definitely been crafting & diy-ing away. My mom came to NYC on Wednesday only 36 hours after we got home from Virginia. She hasn’t been here since early February when we first moved into our apartment in the LES {Lower East Side}. We’re going to see Kinky Boots tonight {on Broadway} and we are really excited. Paul is headed to Chicago this weekend & while I can’t go I’m sending up some baby shower goodies for my cousin-in-law’s {is that really something?}, baby shower. I can’t wait to share with you next week. Until then take a look at some pictures I was able to snap over Memorial day in Virginia.


{Bryan totally being a creeper with the dog in the background. But Reese just puts a smile on my face in this one.}



Paul 1


{Reesie pie conned Auntie LT into letting her out of her stroller. A smile of success on her face.}


Hannah bum

There are SO many more. But, I think at least one of those may put a smile on your face.


XX Leigh-Taylor