10 Things That Make Me Happy: Live Creating Yourself

Today, I’d like to welcome the talented Alaina from Live Creating Yourself. She’s one of my best blogger friends, when we first met in New York it was like we had been friends for decades. She and I talk about everything, from what fashion finds we’re dying to have, to interior design questions like “I changed this around, what do you think?”, to needing a pick me up on a bad day – we’re always there for each other. I feel incredibly fortunate to have Alaina in my life and feel lucky that she is a friend. We will forever have a bond that no one else has.

By day Alaina is a graphic designer for a non-profit, but at night she transforms blogs into beautiful sites – from banners to navigation bars to a complete site overhaul. She’s the girl to go to if you want a site re-design.

Thanks Miss Alaina for guest blogging here today! Miss you.

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Thank you, darling Caitlin, for asking me to share 10 Things I Love on Sacramento Street. I thought I’d keep the theme winter- and holiday-related in the hopes of giving some good gift ideas to your readers. I figured if these items make me happy, they might make the loved ones in your lives happy too! Enjoy.

Black Turtlenecks (J.Crew merino wool), $69.50

You couldn’t show less skin if you tried, yet somehow, the black turtleneck manages to be sexy. It’s my go-to article of clothing come cold weather – perfect for work, holiday shopping, dinner dates, cocktail parties, and for cozying up and watching a movie. Seriously, invest in one. I own at least four.

I was fortunate to receive a cream-colored cashmere Burberry hat years ago, and it’s still my favorite winter accessory. I know it’s costly, but it’s perfect and still looks and feels as beautiful as the day I unwrapped it.

These shoes literally bring smiles to people’s faces. Strangers on the street stop me to compliment them and ask where they’re from. My family laughs and says, “They’re so you.” And I discover an extra spring in my step when I put them on. Who knew a ballet flat could bring so much joy to the world?

Art and literature in one.

I made some hot chocolate, popped in Love Actually, turned on the Christmas tree lights, and cozied up under this lil’ number. What did you do this weekend?

The thrifty girl’s china cabinet.

I’ve never actually drank out of my A mug. It sits nestled on my desk, coraling pens and paper clips, and I love it. Given the personal detail of a monogram and the price point, I’d say this is one of the best gifts you can give a coworker.

My siblings and I were gifted Christopher Radko ornaments every Christmas from a very young age. Of course, we didn’t appreciate them then; we just tried very hard not to break them. Now I have my collection hanging on my first Christmas tree in my apartment and memories of Christmases past come flooding back every time I glance at them.

The kind folks at Pottery Barn sent one of these my way, and it is absolutely STUNNING when lit. I highly recommend these for your home this season. I know I want more!

If you’ve ever experienced Chicago winter winds, you’ll understand why this is my knight in shining armor.


  1. Emily A. Clark

    Great list! Alaina seems like such a happy, fun person to be around. Meeting her was one of the highlights of my NY trip.

  2. Kate {domestikatedlife}

    Love Alaina's list! And you're right, she does transform blogs into beautiful sites, she's working on mine right now!

  3. Katriin

    Black turtlenecks are definitely my favorites as well!

  4. Alaina @ Live Creating Yourself

    Yay! Thanks for sharing my list! 🙂

    Miss you too, Caitlin!


  5. Connie @ SogniESorrisi

    I adore sparkly ballet flats and those Penguin books!

  6. designstiles

    Alaina created my business cards! I feel like I know a little bit more about her. Great picks!

  7. Anonymous

    Love your list Alaina! Knew you three would one day appreciate the Christopher Radkos!

  8. Alicia

    Great list of favorites – Rosebud salve is my lifesavior!!! I'm constantly putting it on.

  9. quintessence

    What a great guest post! I love everything Alaina picked. I put a Rosebud salve in my daughter's stocking every year – it's the best. The little mugs are too cute and as an ex publishing art director I've been an admirer of the Coralie Bickford-Smith series since it started. Have you seen the Penguin75 book? It's so much fun. Caitlin and Alaina – hope you both have a great holiday!!

  10. Jordana @ White Cabana

    I've got the Anthropologie monogrammed mug and absolutely love it. It fits perfectly in my hand (and yes, I've posted about it as well). I've bought several for gifts already and have given a few away already. I think it's a beautiful gift.

  11. Nicole C

    im looking through your blog and i am loving it! this post especially made me smile because many of these things also make me happy! the coralie bickford penguin classics are also sold at anthropologie, i bought two of them there! and i lovee the west elm fauz fur throws- i wish i had one with me right now! and my boyfriend just got me my initials in the monogrammed mugs for christmas ha! thanks for sharing!


  12. Meaghan

    Wow!! Just stumbled upon this list just now! Love the thrify girls version of a china cabinet from Ikea bookshelves. Can you direct me where I can maybe learn more about how they arrached the legs/what kind of legs they are?! Thanks!!!

  13. jenna

    love that awesome picture of Rome’s Coliseum, where could I find that?!

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