Hello there!

If this is your first visit here, please go to my blog's new home, here. You will find more updated posts and if you are lucky, I might just be running a giveaway :-)

If you have been here before, welcome back! I have moved to self-hosted Wordpress, so now you can find me by just typing www.theunlikelyhousewife.com in your browser. I hope to see you there!

XO, Elisa

P.S. This blog's comment are now closed. One more reason to visit me on WP ;-)

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

There's Something about MeMe

Oh yes. I have been tagged repeatedly in the past few weeks – I think it has less to do with people wanting to know more about me and more with the fact that there are so many MeMes going around the blogosphere that we are quickly running out of people to tag – but hey, 3 TAGS people. Three. I can't ignore it any longer.

No, I haven't been ignoring it. I don't LOVE being tagged, so I have been procrastinating (which is totally different from ignoring, thank you very much)... and as it often happens, procrastinating turned into forgetting about it completely. Ooops. Well, I remembered now, thanks to a post on one of my favorite blogs, so here we go:

I was tagged by
Tina (Mummified Times Five), Leah (Bookieboo) and Kelly (Per Se) so I decided to combine all the MeMes into one where I'll share 7 things about me and then tag 7 more people on Twitter *insert evil grin here*

1. My husband is Swiss and I am Italian; I lived in Switzerland for 9 years but got my Swiss citizenship last year (after I had already moved to the US).

2. My mom isn't super-excited about the fact that I got Swiss citizenship, and every time someone mentions that I am Swiss, too, she blurts "But Italian, FIRST!!!". Yeah mom, whatever, chill.

3. I love them, but I rarely buy designer clothes because I get bored so quickly so I prefer things with a shorter shelf-life so as not to feel guilty; however since moving to NY I have become almost obsessed with Michael Kors. Which isn't to say I buy his clothes all the time - I'm saving that for when I lose weight. Which brings me to:

4. I am plus-sized. There, I've said it. But don't think for a moment that I go around with oversized tees and sweats. I may be big, but I'm still fabulous. Most of the time.

5. I love Italy and enjoy going back home, but if I had to pick a place that feels like home, Italy wouldn't be it. It would probably be Switzerland (the Zurich area to be precise). Swiss people may bug me at times, but boy, it's a lovely place to live.

6. However if I had to pick a place to live after we leave the US, it would be London. Or, if I could pick another place in the US instead, Boston.

7. I love heels and if I didn't have to run after Stella I would wear them ALL the time. But my husband, who is nearly 6'5'' and can cover a Manhattan block in 3 steps with those long legs of his, gets annoyed when I can't keep up because of my shoes (like I could otherwise - I am 5'6'', buddy!!), so I don't wear high heels as often as I'd like.

So now, let's pick the next victims, shall we?
Mrs. Mogul

Now tell me something about YOU!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Cool finds of the month: October 2008

Here is my monthly contribution to keeping you up-to-date with the coolest things I found lately on the web! I compiled some great stuff for you this month - so without further ado...

Although I don't like what Juicy Couture started when they came up with velour pants with writing on the butt, I actually really like a lot of this brand's clothing and accessories. So I was excited to find that they came out with a brand new line of cosmetic pouches, train cases and various adorable pavé rings and pendant necklaces (with lip gloss inside!). The new, Limited Edition line is available exclusively at Sephora, and you can see it here.

If you are thinking of getting a new, more eco-friendly car, check out EcoStiletto's article where they share the top six eco-friendly cars on the market – and on the road.

If you live in NYC or visited and are a healthy eater or have food intolerances, you have probably visited BabyCakes. I don't know about you, but I was really excited to hear that they were finally working on a cookbook! I'm happy to report that it's now available for pre-order on Amazon.com, you can get it here. BTW, BabyCakes has been awarded the title of "Best Vegan Bakery" for 2008! Congratulations!

The Google Phone is here! T-Mobile's G1 cell phone launched yesterday. It can be yours with a a two-year contract and is priced at $399.99 ($349.99 when purchased online by existing customers), but considering how many of us are Google-addicts, I think not many will fear the commitment! I am really curious to see how it stacks up against the iPhone.

The return of grunge/rock-inspired fashion also brought back "dog tag"-style necklaces. I bet you won't find any prettier than these by Willa M.

NYC fashionistas and make up addicts, here's a great chance for pampering: Bergdorf Goodman is hosting a special event next week! All next week you can enjoy a special makeover with the top YSL make up artists! And Wednesday, October 29, you can meet Val Garland, Artistic Advisor to YSL Make Up, who will be holding a master class (8.30am-11am) and sharing hot tips and tricks in the store (11.30am-7.30pm). Call 212.872.8654 to schedule your appointment, and receive a gift from the YSL Beauté line for scheduling in advance.

Ebates is a website that allows you to not only use the best discounts and coupons when you shop, but also get cash back on all your purchases. For instance, if you are looking for designer handbags, shopping through Ebates you will be able to save 30% on this Foley + Corinna bag, as well as get 3% of the purchase price re-accredited on your account. You have to admit that's pretty cool.

Some "gift with purchase" beauty offers: buy $45 of Eau Thermale Avene and get a Face & Eye anti-aging Kit ($33 value) here; or buy $30 of philosophy and get a powdered sugar cookie body souffle ($15 value) here.

Need to spruce up your hairdo for a special night out? Get up to 50% off Tigi Hair care products 60% off salon hair appliances here.

One more beauty coupon code, courtesy of SELF magazine: shop for all the new fall colors at Smashbox.com and get $25 off any purchase of $100 or more by using the code SELF25.

And of course, when I talk about beauty, how could I leave out our beloved Sephora? Get a free 10-Day sample of Bare Minerals (in your shade of choice among 6) plus a baby buki brush by typing MYSHADE at checkout. OR enter BERARE and get a free bare Escentuals Rare Minerals sample plus an applicator brush.

I came home from Florida in wedge sandals and short sleeves, to find nearly-freezing temperatures in NY. The weather is getting chilly! Time to shop for some lovely new sweaters. Armani Exchange currently has many many sweaters on sale, and through October 26 you can get an additional $25 off already discounted prices. Hurry!

If you love Michael Kors as much as I do, you'll be excited about these MK items going on sale at the Nordstrom online store:
- Peninsula patent crock clutch at $149 (originally $228)
- Peninsula patent croc shoulder bag at $299 (originally $448)
- Austin large leather satchel at $265 (originally $398)
- Austin - large leather shoulder bag at $232 (originally $348) and the nylon version at $198!

Endless.com is running a special on boots: buy two pairs and get 20% off your entire order! There are so many cute pairs that would be great for fall, that it won't be hard to pick two :-)

More shoes: through October 26, get free shipping on your entire order at Steve Madden online store.

If you were excited when TopShop opened in the US, how much are you going to love me when I tell you about the TopShop online sale? The silk puffball dresses from the Kate Moss line are 50% off!

I like to start shopping for Christmas in October and November, to get a better selection and avoid late shipping, crowds and last-minute panic. If you like to do that too, one place to check out is Amazon's Toy Saving's Event, where you can get really good offers on Toys and Games of many different kinds, for different ages. Also check the Amazon Toy Outlet for Toys and Games up to 70% off.

An offer code from InStyle: 20% off your purchase from Sacred Charms using INSTYLE08 at checkout. My favorite picks: the Birthstone Necklace, the Mauve Shell Pendant and the Autumn Splendor necklace. Check out the InStyle November Deals and Steals for more discounts and giveaways!

A great scoop from Stylehive! To celebrate its new website, Allaboutcute.com is offering new customers an amazing deal! Save $100 off your purchase of any item by entering the code STYLEHIVE at checkout. In addition, until the end of November 2008 you can get 30% off any item(s) when you use the code BEE CUTE at checkout.

Happy shopping everyone!

Event Alert: Intuition's "Life is Beautiful"

What is it? An event organized by Intuition and Linea Pelle. October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and Intuition is hosting this "shop for a cause" event where 25% of the proceeds will be donated to breast cancer research for a cure.

Enjoy champagne and cupcakes while shopping, receive a special goodie bag and enter to win a special edition Linea Pelle handbag!

Where is it? Intuition,
10581 West Pico Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA

When is it? Thursday, October 30 at 6-9pm.

RSVP at info@shopintuition.com

Sunday, October 19, 2008

All Disneyed out

Yup, that's me. After 5 days spent almost entirely at Walt Disney World, I felt like Disney was going to swallow me whole. It was really fun but very tiring! I am very happy to be back home, especially since I managed to actually get a cold while there, despite the heat.

I really shouldn't complain though, we had a blast!

Don't worry, I won't do a long, detailed post about our trip to Orlando. If you want to see pictures though, I have uploaded a bunch here - not all 180 we took, mind you – but the 51 I did upload are probably plenty :-)

I am so excited about being home and about going to Lucky Shops in 2 weeks, that I decided to host a giveaway.

See that? I'm giving away a copy of the Sex and The City movie! All you have to do is post a comment telling me what your favorite post was. I have been blogging for a few months now and I'd love your input! So please comment away.

You can get additional entries for posting about this giveaway on your blog, website, MySpace page or whatever you call your cyber home!
1 entry for blogging about it
1 entry for posting the graphic on your sidebar
(please post a separate comment for each additional entry)

Off I go now. Luggage is not going to unpack itself!

Oh, who am I kidding? I'm going to take a nap or watch TV and sip some hot tea and tro to get rid of this cold.

I almost forgot: the giveaway ends on November 2, 2008 at midnight E.S.T. Good luck everyone!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Sing it out

If I had to pick my favorite show from the past 10 years, Ally McBeal would probably be it. The premise on paper didn't sound like anything special and the first couple of episodes were so-so, but it quickly developed into a really great show. I loved how Calista Flockhart portrayed the neurotic Ally! And I loved that my husband enjoyed the show too, so we could watch it together (a rare thing, since we have fairly different tastes). It was one of the few shows we would sometimes watch over dinner (we don't usually watch TV while eating) so my husband came up with the expression "Ally McMeal" and would ask me:"Should we have an Ally McMeal?" Corny, I know. But cute, especially when Sarah - then 4 - picked up on it.

Ally McBeal had a theme song. Not the show's theme song, her own theme song. It was something her crazy funny therapist (played by Tracy Ullman) told her to do, come up with a song that would make her feel better every time she was down.

I thought it was a good idea and also just fun to figure it out, so I set out to find my own theme song. For a while I took into consideration Meredith Brooks' well known track, because I found it empowering in a way: kind of "look, this is how I am, deal with it". But my husband objected to me picking as my theme song one with the title B***ch. So I picked an alternative song, Groove is in the Heart, by Dee-Lite. That one kept me happy for several years, because it was fun, upbeat, and it reminded me of when I was young.

But now I am looking at these videos, listening to these songs, and I'm cracking up. Not "oh, I feel so much better now" type of thing, but more "OMG, this is so ridiculous I can't believe I am admitting it online". I realize that somehow neither song fits me anymore, so here I am, on the quest for a new theme song. Yes, I know you think it's silly, but no throwing tomatoes please, we all do what we can to improve our moods and not become Wareworlf Moms!

I'm thinking of songs I have been listening to. "I Kissed a Girl" by Katy Perry? It's peppy, but it doesn't really sound like me at all. Plus DH would freak. Okay, next. "Mercy" by Duffy? Not peppy enough. Well, I guess the search continues.

Do you have a theme song? Come on, share, I promise I won't steal it.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Fancy yourself a designer?

If you wish you worked at a magazine and had the chance to style sets and outfits for shoots, here's your chance: Lucky magazine is currently running a fun contest where the winner gets to STYLE a section of Lucky magazine!

Just click on the picture and upload your best looks featuring denim - 3 finalists will be featured in an issue of Lucky magazine, and the winner will get to style a professional photoshoot for Lucky brand jeans!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Time to indulge!

In fashion, that is ;-) The "cool finds" post is still coming, but these really cannot wait!

First things first: Gucci is slashing the prices on the summer collection! You can score amazing deals on handbags, travel accessories, and wallets. If you don't believe me, I'll tell you this: the Romy patent leather tote went from $1,695 to $679! If you always wanted that Gucci bag and could never afford it, or if you want to get a few
Christmas/Hanukkah presents in advance, this is the time.

In honor of the Project Runway finale, today only, BlueFly is giving an additional 10% off, so everything is now up to 65% off! Also applied to sale merchandise - meaning: excuse me while I go shopping while sitting at home ;-)

The Jonathan Saunders for Target collection is out! Check it out here.

The Sigerson Morrison for Target collection, what is due to hit stores this Sunday, is already available online.

Be still my beating heart - the Anya Hindmarch for Target collection is available for pre-order! Check it out here.

Try to add some "green" to your shopping? Check out the Greenloop 4-day sale. Until Sunday, visit Greenloop.com to find lots of eco-fashion items at discounted prices.

Until October 13, save $25 on any order $125 and over at Endless.com. And don't forget that Endless always ships overnight for free, and return shipping is free, too. You really have nothing to lose! You do have lots to gain: a pair of fabulous shoes for instance, or a lovely new bag for fall. Here are a few of my favorite affordable picks:

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Event alert: LUCKY SHOPS 2008

What is it? LUCKY SHOPS is a shopping event hosted by LUCKY Magazine. Like the pages of the magazine, the event features a wide range of popular designers and shops selling current and off-season items at up to 70% off retail. While you're there, in addition to shopping for you'll enjoy: complimentary cocktails and snacks, music, and sponsor giveaways.

In 2007, LUCKY SHOPS hosted over 65 designers and shops from around the globe in New York City, including: Marc Jacobs, See by Chloe, Tracy Reese, Foley + Corinna, Mulberry, Rebecca Taylor, Theory, Tory Burch, Botkier, Belle by Sigerson Morrison, Helen Ficalora, Miguel Ases, Bluefly, Catherine Malandrino, MINT jodi arnold, Rafe, Vena Cava, J Brand and many many more. Most merchants sold current as well as off-season items at up to 70% off. You can find a list of this year's vendors here.

If you are still on the fence about going, here are a few things Deirdre shared on Stylehive that might change your mind:

- At the Benefit Cosmetic Brow Bar, you will receive a professional brow arch or lash application with any Benefit purchase.

- Get the star treatment: visit the Chevy Malibutique for a consultation from celebrity stylist Danna Weiss.

- At the Nine West boutique you can enter to win free shoes for a year, a two-day trip to NYC, plus a $1,000 shopping spree. And of course, a subscription to Lucky.

Also, according to attendees of last year's event, here's a few more reason's to attend:
*Marc by Marc Jacobs leather bag was, $328, Lucky Shops Price, $100
*LaROK cashmere cardigan was, $278, Lucky Shops Price, $80
*Sass & Bide red velvet top was $415, Lucky Shops Price, $180
*Sigerson Morrison shoes at 30% off
*Michael Kors shoes for $30
*Gucci vintage dresses for low as $50

Where is it? Metropolitan Pavilion
125 West 18th Street (between 6th and 7th Avenues)
New York, NY
Click here for directions.

When is it? First Dibs Friday: November 7, 10AM - 7PM
Saturday Shop-a-thon: November 8, 10AM - 5PM

Price of ticket: starting at $20 – see the different types of ticket here.

See a video about the 2007 event here.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Let's talk about Barbie

In the immense universe of toys that have been produced since the beginning of time there's one doll that has aged gracefully: Barbie.

There is always some kind of controversy about : it used to be that her outfits were too outrageous, then it was that the pregnant Barbie gave a wrong idea of how babies are really born; now the main controversy is that Barbie, according to many, promotes an unhealthy body image. True, she may not be anatomically correct, but people, she is a doll. And not any doll, either: she is the one doll that has passed the test of time. Probably because she appeals to the spoiled princess in all of us: she has cars, pools, airplanes, and lots and lots of clothes and accessories. I love Barbie, even now, at 32. And I hate imitations. I am a Barbie snob.

For me, one of the cool things about having two daughters is all the Barbie time we can score. Sarah owns several Barbie dolls, and her dolls came with a horse, a nursery set, a kitchen and a playschool set among other things. They currently reside in the playroom we have in the basement - her Barbie paraphernalia is (barely) contained in a large plastic see through toy/storage box, and Stella LOVES to dig through it and take out all the Barbies, the accessories, the horse. She can't dress a Barbie on her own yet, but she can put shoes on the dolls, and she thoroughly enjoys picking out a pair of shoes for each doll (of course).

Sarah, on the other end, at the ripe old age of 9, doesn't play that much with Barbies anymore. I think it might have something to do with one of her obnoxious ex-schoolmates teasing her, because she used to always ask me to "play Barbies" with her. She still remains faithful to the Barbie movies though, and I can see why: they are pretty much fairy tales in movie form, and they feature really pretty clothes, cute pets and catchy songs among other things. If you ask her which Barbie movie is her favorite she will have a hard time deciding, but she has no doubt who her favorite sidekick is: Bibble, from the Fairytopia series. He is pretty cute, if a little annoying (I can only take baby talk in small doses, and only from babies).

Right now, all she can talk about is the new Barbie movie, - where she heard of it, I have no idea, since we are one of those weird families who don't have TV connection and only watch DVDs, so she doesn't see commercials. Be as it may, she knows about the new movie and she really wants to see it, so much so that the other day, while we were discussing our upcoming trip to Disney World, she asked if there was a Barbie-themed park somewhere - no doubt hoping that she'd get to see real-life Barbie movie characters walking around, and perhaps score some cheesy cool bag along with a free copy of the movie.

She doesn't know, but she will be getting it soon, as long as she keeps up her grades. Or maybe she does know - you never know with girls, really. And she is my daughter, after all. You never really know what she is thinking.
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