Small town Santa


I’m just a small town girl living in a big city world.  Over Christmas break, Mr. Wells and I traveled east to see the family with the bulk of our journey putting us in small town territory.

Our first stop was in Spring Lake – a quaint little seaside town on the north eastern coast of New Jersey.  After going a little stir-crazy on Christmas Day, we wondered outside for some fresh ocean air.  We have been to Spring Lake a handful of times before but I was reminded of how well they do Christmas.  It’s very Norman Rockwell meets Frank Capra meets Nancy Meyers.


A quick tour around town offered plenty of research for future dream house goals:


But we quickly wrapped it up thanks to a bitter winter wind and quickly setting sun.

The next day we headed inland to my hometown of Lancaster, PA.  Thanks to a nasty cold that set in, we spent most of this leg of the trip on my parents’ couch.

We did, however, manage to sneak out for one afternoon to take a quick tour around downtown.  This particular area has gone through a huge revitalization over the last 10 years since I moved away and I’m always amazed at all the new shops and restaurants that pop up between each visit home.

During this trip, I really wanted to take Mr. Wells to Ellicott & Co., a new mens shop just down the street from the famous Central Market.


They featured a ton of high-quality goods – things you just don’t see anymore from your big brands – handcrafted, artisanal wares.  Quite a few things caught my eye but I was most drawn to these letterpress maps of Philadelphia and Lancaster.

Ultimately I decided to pass as I couldn’t wrap my head around how I’d carry it on the plane back to LA without fear of bends and wrinkles.

As it was an unusual, bitterly cold day, we popped into my favorite nearby pub Annie Bailey’s for some hearty home cooking. It was also a pleasant reminder of all the amazing pubs we visited on our trip to the UK in September and October.


Two pies down and we were on our way home. But not without a quick stop for dessert at the shop that made our wedding cupcakes, Lancaster Cupcake.


A few days later we were home, nestled under blankets ready to ring in the new year and wishing the Christmas decorations would learn how to put themselves away…



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