Monday, January 6, 2014

Holiday Break

When I lived in Russia, New Year was the biggest and most beloved holiday for me - as it was and still is for the majority of Russians. The way we celebrated it was very similar to the way Americans celebrate Christmas. We decorated Christmas trees inside of our apartments or houses, and there was also a huuuuuge tree outside - in every town, every city neighborhood. Those outdoor trees would be decorated with lights and hand made decorations (made by children in public schools). I lived in Siberia, and along with the tall decorated Christmas tree, we would have beautiful ice towns with fortresses, slides and figures of fairy tale characters. The whole family would gather around a beautifully arranged dinner table with tons of tasty Russian foods, we would open a bottle of champagne and welcome and greet the New Year with all our big open hearts as soon as the clock  strikes 12... This would repeat every December 31st, over and over again, year after year, with very little variations - and yes, I just absolutely loved it! When you change continents, you take a few things with you and leave many things behind. And it goes for some traditions too.

Justin and I have hardly ever had the same New Year's eve. There is always a surprise in it. We don't really think of it or plan it - we just follow our noses, and it seems that this sort of celebration suits us best. This December, we took a short break to spend some time to discover new places and just enjoy our time together. The destination was San Juan Island - a very popular tourist destination here around Seattle, but new to us.

To get to the islands, you take a ferry and travel for a bit over one hour enjoying breathtaking views of Puget Sound and many, many little islands - you'll be surrounded by them! Pictures can only show a little part of this amazing beauty... San Juan island and the town of Friday Harbor where we spent our time exploring, are amazing in their diversity! The middle of the island is a very pastoral, rural farm area with fields of crops and animal farms (the island even has its own camel, and we saw him on a farm!). There are a few parks and national historical sites, trails, rocks, wildlife and two lighthouses on the island. We saw bald eagles, seals and otters, deer and even a large fluffy fox - practically nose to nose!

I hadn't brought many clothes with me - I just wanted something warm and comfy to wear on my trip. I've talked a lot about my parka here and my faux fur boots here, so I will only have to introduce you to my raincoat and rain booties in this post. :)

I show off a little here - yes, I do! Wouldn't you? :)
So, the Hunter booties were bought about a year ago at Nordstrom Rack. I love the fact that they are short, and that they have heels, and the color is perfect for jeans! I just loved them, what can I say. But I was surprised that they are actually very comfortable on my feet! I walked all day long and was happy to get rid of them by the end of a long day, but it's only because I am always happy to take off my shoes, any time.

The raincoat was purchased this fall at Nordstrom. It is packable and comes with a color-coordinated bag. I have never heard of the brand before. Unexpectedly elegant! I am very happy with the quality and style of this (I would say) untypical raincoat and highly recommend to anyone who is in the market (we seem to need such stuff in rainy Seattle and can wear them 9 months of the year). I love the fact that it has this feminine touch upfront, but you probably can't see it very well. I guess another photo session is coming up soon. :) 

Justin said it is the best picture of him in years - I am glad!! All other photographs are taken by him, as always, and I love them, as always! :)

Outfit 1
Platinum Utex Down Parka and Sunglasses by Marc Jacobs via Nordstrom (old).
Boots by Pajar (Canadian company - very nice quality boots, comfortable and warm! bought at The Walking Company specializing in comfortable shoes, 7 or 8 years ago)
Wool scarf by Garnet Hill (my favorite scarf ever!).

Outfit 2
Rainforest raincoat (in different colors here and here). Fisherman's sweater by Jeanne Pierre (via Goodwill) - similar here. Turtleneck and old jeans by Chico's. Rainboots by Hunter (via Nordstrom Rack).

Location: San Juan Island


  1. Your post tells a thousand stories, the pictures took me along and the description so clear I could almost imagine being there. Great blog!

    1. Thank you, Nicolene, for the very touching comment - my heart sings! I am very happy to discover your blog as well! I have just looked at it. There is so much to explore - I will probably loose myself for hours there. :) I loved your style very much!

  2. Natalia, I love this teal sweater and the red cost. These pictures are breathtaking,a nd I agree that photo of Justin is very handsome . I find your description of your New Years Celebration to be thrilling, and am so glad you have brought it here with you to stay.

    1. Thank you, dear Elle, for your sweetest words. They warm my heart! :) Justin was also very pleased to hear a compliment. :) As a photographer, he doesn't appear on pictures a lot. :)