Selective Collective: Secret Santa Gift Exchange 2014


It’s no secret that I ADORE my blogging besties from The Selective Collective, And while we’ve taken a mini-break from reviewing books together (because everyone is swamped with life and, you know, reading), we still chatter pretty much endlessly and we have these majorly epic e-mail chains (where we actually talk about things other than books. What?). I’ve still never met one of these girls in person–yet–but they are a big part of my day. So it makes sense that we’d continue our Secret Santa Gift Exchange.

As in years past, I was supremely spoiled by my Secret Santa this year.

Now, please excuse the quality of the pics. It was evening, we’d just gotten home from Disneyland, and it was a little dim in my dining room where I opened my gifts. But it’s not like I could wait for better lighting, hello. There were presents waiting.

Look at this gorgeous stack of presents I probably don't deserve but am so excited to receive anyway.

Look at this gorgeous stack of presents I probably don’t deserve but am so excited to receive anyway.


Unwrapping. Oh, the anticipation!

My hands aren’t actually that cute and tiny. There was a nine year-old elf who was anxious to help. Ever notice that? How kids want to unwrap all presents, even if they aren’t for them.

Charm bracelet

Charm bracelet

Behold. We stood in awe of the amazing Harry Potter charm bracelet before us. It is so cute! With a Hogwarts acceptance letter charm, a Hedwig, a castle, a several more. I have worn it almost every day since opening this package.

Book pages with an R for my last name, Sigh.

Book pages with an R for my last name. Insta-love.

Look at this ornament! I’ve already texted pictures of my home to show my Secret Santa how perfectly this matches with our decor. In fact, this is on my tree now, but after all of the other ornaments are put away this will get a place of honor in a shadow box on the wall. Because I am in love.

Lavedar polish with a bluish tint

Lavendar polish with a bluish tint

A deeper, more cobalt blue polish

A deeper, more cobalt blue polish


The pictures do not do these colors justice. I love both of them. They are something I’d choose for myself in a heartbeat (and I love nail polish!). The one on the left is on my fingers as I type.

Someday My Prince Will Come

Someday My Prince Will Come

A book! And this one sounds so cute. It’s all about a girl who is obsessed with marrying a prince (she’s also in love with all things related to England, so she is my people). I’ve already started it and it’s adorable.

Sighs. Swoons. And more sighs.

Sighs. Swoons. And more sighs.

You guys, I love this book. I can’t wait to read it again (I’ve been saying I need a hard copy because I originally borrowed it from the library).

My favorite gift of all

My favorite gift of all

I love all of my gifts, but this was my favorite. I had an absolute freakout meltdown when I saw these cute Princess Diaries quote coasters that were hand-decorated with me (and my fake boyfriend, Michael Moscovitz) in mind. I’m not joking when I say I CRIED.


Real tears as my family looked on in an odd display of amusement and confusion.

Because my friends know me so well. They know that, crazy as it sounds, The Princess Diaries is a huge deal to me. It is my favorite series of all time (with Harry Potter as a close second). I re-read these books endlessly and I love Mia Thermopolis and Michael Moscovitz like they’re real. Um, especially Michael.

Here’s a close-up look at each one:

coaster 4

“Because friends like that are more precious than all the tiaras in the world.”

coaster 2

“I wonder what it’s like to live in Tinaville. I get the feeling it’s very shiny there.”

coaster 3

” The fact is, I love him. He’s the boy I want. And one day he’ll be mine.”

And my favorite Princess Diaries quote of all…

coaster 1

“Mia, I’m not sorry. And I’ll wait. Love, Michael”


My secret santa was Candice from The Grown Up YA.

Candice, thank you for the time and thought you put into my gifts. You are such a sweet, dear friend and it means so much to me that you did all of this, and that you truly, truly know me.

Now, I’m not sure if I’m supposed to tell whose name I drew this year, but I have to because it’s kind of funny. This year, I pulled the name of Kristina from Gone Pecan. The reason this is funny is because last year Kristina drew my name  (and spoiled me, of course!) and last year I drew Candice’s name.

In any case, I know it sounds corny, but these friends–Candice, Kristina & Daphne, Sandie & Diana, and Brittany— mean so much to me. They have been a lovely reward to being a blogging book-worm. They are the real gift.

Merry Christmas!


2 thoughts on “Selective Collective: Secret Santa Gift Exchange 2014

  1. Oh goodness… I nearly started crying reading this! Tee you are SO sweet and I am so honored to call you a friend! And not really just a friend, but a very very very close and dear friend! I’m very happy you like the nail polishes; I saw them and they just screamed your name. Those colors make me think of you! I’m also glad you are enjoying the book. I picked up a copy while I was visiting NYC and we randomly went into a Border’s that was closing; I couldn’t put it down and whenever I think about it I think how much you’d like it. Glad to know you do! 🙂

    Also, yay that you loved the coasters! I knew I HAD to include some Princess Diaries something and thought doing coasters would be perfect.

    Hope you and your sweet family have the merriest of Christmases!!! Love you!

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