Lisa, Patty, Maureen ... Pick Favorite Stocking Stuffers

The moxie elves are super busy this time of year making merry and gift bagging their little elfin buns off  but they are never too busy to stop and make some recommendations.  When asked what some of their favorite stocking stuffers are this year at moxie, here is what they picked.

Miss Lisa loves.....
Junior Mints Peppermint Crunch.  How does she know she loves them so much???  She eats a box almost every day at work.  An elf girls just got to keep her energy up at this time of year!

Go fish and other cute playing cards makes her must have list.

Rubberband shooters for kids of all ages

And just to keep it fun .... a chill, baby mustache pacifier!  Good picks Lisa!!

Miss Patty recommends .......

Shower bursts ..... aromatherapy for your bathroom.  Place one on your shower or tub ledge to release essential oils to create an aromatherapy spa experience in every shower. 

Patty loves this happy little owl timer and from the looks of it he loves her too. 

Patty says these head massagers are a MUST have!

Miss Maureen's top picks are .....

fun socks .... for him and her

Jumbo smarties .... for all the smarties in your life!

the Croc Claw extendible back scratcher because you know it stinks trying to reach that middle of the back spot.  Let the croc get it for you!

Trap a crap and Daisy Doo ... do they work???? Why yes they doo doo!!!

Thanks Maureen and Patty.... great picks!

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Lehan Drugs Cash Mobs Moxie in DeKalb, Illinois

This past Sunday we at Moxie were "Cash Mobbed" by team Lehan Drugs. I'd only heard of cash mobbing before but never dreamed that something so wonderful would happen right here in DeKalb.

 According to wikipedia a cash mob is ... "a group 
of people who assemble at a local business to make purchases. The purpose of these mobs is to support both the local businesses and the overall community." The Lehan group came in together and many had on cute t-shirts stating their mission of spending money locally 2 dollars at a time. And yes, they made their purchases with 2 dollar bills which really makes it easy to identify their purchases. We had a BIG stack of 2's when they were done. They weren't kidding, they really mobbed us .... but in the most social and well-behaved way!

The mission of supporting local businesses is something that I know is so important to Lehans and to us at Moxie as well. If we don't support all the great independently owned businesses we have here in our DeKalb / Sycamore area then what will we be left with if they can't make it. You know as well as I, we will be left with the exact same stores that you can find in almost any town. And that would be sad. Those shops serve purposes for sure but what gives our towns color, flavor, flair and uniqueness is the different talents, products and services offered by all the mom and pop / family owned businesses.

So thank you so very much Lehan Drugs for doing something so uplifting for our local community. I know we were not the only ones who benefitted from your generosity on Sunday. You've inspired me to be even more diligent in resourcing my needs locally.

This post is a copy of the post I did over on our Facebook page.  That post got such a positive response that I felt I should also share it here for any of our  readers who didn't see it over there. 

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13th Annual Moonlight Shopping Party

It was a blast.  Hard to believe it was one week ago already and I'm just now getting these photos posted.  Time literally flies during the month of December or so it seems here at Moxie.  I can't even wrap my head around the fact that Christmas is only a week and a half away.  I better get busy!  I've got lots of things to do ... how about you??

We hope you were able to drop by our 13th annual Moonlight Shopping Party last Friday night...(and if you didn't you NEED to come next year because it really is a FUN event!).  It was our busiest one yet.  We are honored and so very thankful that y'all still like us.  And the feeling is mutual.  Without you we'd just be a shop filled with fun finds and cute stuff.  But with you, we are a vibrant and thriving part of our local landscape.  We know that shopping local is a choice and we (and I think I speak for the other local businesses that you also suppport) thank you so very much for making that choice!

Thank you Mackenzie Maeder for capturing some great moments on camera!

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Collecting .... Beads, Felt, Sequins

Beads, felt, sequins .... they just make me happy.  I love a winter white aesthetic too, but just can't seem to go that way in my own decorating.  I'd miss my child-like kitsch too much.  I'm a kid at heart I think. I love the wack-a-doodle world of over the top beaded ornaments, stockings, and wall hangings.  And I found out the hard way how long it actually takes to make a beaded ornament.  A couple of years back I thought I'd whip up a couple of "simple spheres" myself.  I gave up after 1 hour and only a third of an ornament done.  Plus it was kind of painful pushing in all of those pin heads.  Yes, I'm an impatient baby.  After that experience, I decided it was much simpler and definitely more fun to hunt them down at estate sales and church bizarres.  

I really love anything with the beaded felt or sequins.  The napkin rings above were a gift from my dear friend Sharon who knows all about my love of the merry kitsch!  I use them currently as a stacked tree topper on one of my tabletop sized trees.  I'd never actually use them as napkin rings as I'd be too afraid they would get smudged up with gravy or some such horror.  

The giant beaded ornaments directly behind the Noel angels were found by Mr. Moxie for me this summer while on a Michigan road trip.  I could tell he was super pleased to present them to me at the time.  He loves it when he finds something that will make me smile.  And I love that about him.   Any man who loves to make his wife happy with vintage treasures has to be a GOOD man!!! 

 When it comes to the ornaments I love finding the figurals the best as it seems they are the hardest to find.  Followed closely by simple round spheres.  I love how they look piled up in a bowl.  Someday when I find enough I might do a big tree in just beaded ornaments but for now I do a small white tabletop tree in them and they really pop off of the white nicely!
The chubby santa in the lower right corner was a thrilling find this year.  He is nicely detailed.  I rescued him out of a box of mostly non-interesting ornaments at a summer estate sale.  For a quarter!  Woo hoo.  I often see these ornaments for sale on ebay but just am not interested in procuring them via an online auction.  It is much more satisfying to dig around at sales and find a handful of new ones each year to add to my collection. 

We do up our big douglas fir real tree in all glass and celluloid ornaments.  I'll try to get some photos of it next.  Happy decorating to you!
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My sweet niece Brooke

One of the greatest joys in my life is being an aunt.  We used to sell a frame that said "Aunt ... like mom  only cooler"  and if that isn't one of my missions in life, I don't know what is.  I have a secret that I usually don't admit publicly but am going to now.  I'm not a "baby" whisperer like many I know.  You know the sweet people who love to hold and coo babies in their arms for hours upon hours.  My sisters Courtney and Lara are like that.  No amount of baby time is too much for them.  They will wait in line to hold the newest addition to the world and me, I'm the one who likes to feel their soft hand in mine and make them smile or giggle from a distance.  But then I've had my fill and seek out the age groups that can talk.  And my favorite age group is the one that some find difficult ... the pre-teens and teens.  Of course had I not suffered from infertility and had kids of my own, I might feel differently.  But my life is what it is and on this path of mine I find teens so much fun to be around.  And maybe because I work so hard to keep my "cool aunt" status going, they actually seem to like to be around me too!  Yay for that!!!

The beautiful girl / woman you see in the photos here is my darling niece and god-daughter Brooke.  She is wonderful beyond words.  Being her god-mother has over the years morphed into me being what I've begun to call her "Fairy God-Mother"  That is how I get away with spoiling her a bit extra and getting away with it with my sister.  I'm crafty like that.  One of the things we like to do together is look through my "vintage vaults."  That's what I call my storage supply of gorgeous vintage dresses.  Time permitting she models them for me so I get to see them on someone who actually fits in the tiny works of art. (darn those dresses are so small!) 

This past fall Brooke and Mackenzie (my nephew's fabulous girlfriend) asked if they could do a photo shoot in my yard.  Mackenzie is an excellent photographer.  She is currently studying photography and graphic design at NIU.  Of course I said yes.  Brooke came dressed in a vintage late 40s cotton dress she had previously found at moxie and Mackenzie did her hair and make-up which I thought turned out beautiful.  The smart Mackenzie scheduled the session for when the light would be gorgeous ... right around 6 pm.  I asked if I could also take pictures since I've been trying to teach myself how to use my dslr camera and could use more practice.  I promised to stay out of the way (which I'm sure I didn't) and   Mackenzie graciously said Yes!  

These are 3 of my favorite photos that I took that day.  The genius idea to snap Brooke thru the screens of the porch was all Mackenzies.  But I'm so glad she came up with it because I just love how it turned out.  If Brooke were a singer this could be her album cover.  Not that I'm saying my photo is great, but just that she looks like she could be on an album cover! 

This photo above makes me happy.  I think I captured her spirit here.  She has a little something in the eyes that reflects her upbeat and feisty personality.  She is no shy wallflower and I love that about her.  

Here is the photographer and her muse at play.  A little friendly mid-shoot fun never hurt anyone.  Glad I was there to capture it.  It's always great to capture the photographer too!   I so admire both my niece Brooke and Mackenzie.  They are both not just creative and artistic but really great on the inside too. I'm just happy they allow me into their young worlds every now and then. 

Please visit Mackenzie Maeder Photography and Graphic Design on her Facebook page.  
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Artist Friends

I've always been drawn to artists.  Some of my very best friends in the world are artists.  Kind souls who see the world differently.  Some are shy and a bit under-confident about their own awesomeness so I make it a point to try to let them know how uber cool and talented I think they are.  They never brag about themselves so I guess I'm gonna have to do it for them! 

The little Sprite above is painted by my friend Patty.  I've had the best of times working with her for the better part of 12 years.  She gets me.  She makes me laugh and most of all she's got a pure heart and is a patient and generous soul.  The two of us together at work are constantly getting a wee bit in trouble from my sister (she takes work seriously as I should) for our shenanigans.  Our love of make-believe, spontaneous improv skits as it relates to retail situations and products alike, along with breaking into jigs for no apparent reason makes us on the top of the naughty retail girls list.  But no matter how many times we get the old .... "what are you two doing over there" routine, Patty and I stay true to our inner merry- mischief- making selves and let the jigs fly when they must. 

I'm a huge fan of Patty's art.  She is a painter.  I've purchased many paintings and been ever-so-luckily gifted others over the years.  They hang all over my house.  She doesn't have an etsy although she might in the future.  Right now we have a beautiful angel painting of hers for sale in the shop.  This little sprite carrying a package was a tiny painting done on an old book cover.  It was part of a Christmas present she made for me last year.  I love displaying it with my vintage Christmas decor.  Thanks Patty .... I love it!

My friend Lisa is also an artist and a vintage seller too.  I've had the good fortune to work with her for the last 7 plus years.  Her love of junkin rivals my own and we like to go major road-trip junkin together at least once a year until we can't junk no more!!!! She also makes me laugh (I find that my best friends all have that in common).  She is so talented and imaginative.  She has no problem hopping right into the world of make-believe with me at a moments notice.  She is like me in that she loves many different types of things.  She loves wide when it comes to vintage and so do I.  We just have a hard time sticking to any one era or style.  She also likes pie and coined the phrase "I'm going to put on my pie eating pants" which has gone on to become one of my favorite things to say.  How can you not love a girl who gets into special comfy pants for pie indulgence. She is so sweet and agreeable ... I adore her!

Last year for Christmas Lisa made me and sweet husband this adorable terrarium / winter scene.   I keep it on my kitchen windowsill  all winter long.  We just got it back out this week and I love gazing upon it while I do the dishes.  It is enchanting ... this little world of deer and mushrooms covered in snow.  And, did you see the cute little banner she made .... Fabulous!!

Lisa sells on etsy ... mostly vintage clothing and some prints of her art.  She is also a painter and is currently making fantastic little animal portraits.  She has sales at her house in the country several times a year which feature both vintage and art.  Please visit her on her Willow Nook facebook page

I wish I could paint .... but alas no.  But it sure does make it easier to accept when you have great friends who can paint for you!  

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