Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Coat vote.

So, one of the things I get asked about often are jackets and coats.  Instead of sending individual texts from now on, I'll refer to this long post.  Where do I find them?  How do I figure out the sizing? Or, if you're my husband, why do I keep buying them?  Except that Zach is basically equally obsessed with jackets and coats, so we're pretty much even.  😛  Also, why am I writing a post on coats when it is still 90 degrees outside?  I have no answer to that one.  


If you want a sleek coat that can be dressed up easily, Zara is your place.  Mostly, their black jackets and coats.  Because they don't break the bank and they are beautiful.  You can wear them every day if you want to be "just a little bit fancy" (one of Eloise's favorite phrases).  I find they run a little bit small.  They are warm, but they are not made for your harshest winter temps.  Also, they surprisingly last for years.  I passed two (yes, TWO) on my way to class when I studied abroad and then lived close to one when I lived in North Africa.  It was a slight problem.  Needless to say, I just retired those jackets last year (that's a lot of years, folks).

If you want a heavy duty warm winter coat that will last you for years, then J. Crew is probably your best bet.  Read the reviews for sizing.  And don't buy full price.  Those are my biggest pieces of advice.  Also, the newer wool they use is beautiful, but it does pill.  You can remove the pilling in about 10 minutes with one of these, so don't let that keep you from buying. 

For lighter jackets (and vests - vests are the best!!!), I typically go with Anthropologie brands or Madewell Jackets.  Or I look at Nordstrom.  And for super trendy short jackets, I stick to the Who What Wear line at Target and Loft.  For rain jackets specifically, Boden has amazing ones.  I hate rain.  Despise it.  And I also hate umbrellas.  So, I like that Boden's jackets actually have a functioning hood.  Patagonia's Torrentshell Jacket is a powerhouse if you want something more casual (and plan on being active outside).  


Even the most expensive coat in the world will look meh if it doesn't fit.  I do not buy winter coats and jackets from department stores other than Nordstrom.  Why?  Because I am short.  I am curvy and short.  I look like an oompa loompa if my coats and clothes don't fit well.  All of the places I have mentioned either have petite sizes or have styles that fit petite women, and Nordstrom typically has an array or petite sizes.  The main thing I have realized with buying petite sizes are the fit in the shoulder.  Yes, they are shorter in length, but the shoulder width and fit is what makes the biggest difference.  Also, many styles now require you size down.  So, do yourself a favor and buy the correct size.  You may not even be a petite size typically, but if the coat feels boxy, you may want to try a petite option and see if it fits. 

So, now you know way more than you ever, ever wanted to know about how and where I shop for coats.  Favorites below.

This Zara Tweed Coat is the closest to one I bought last year, which I love.  It comes in a cream color as well.  Maybe you can buy the cream if you do not have children.  Or have children who are better behaved than mine.  FYI - Zara stuff rarely goes on sale during the proper season, so don't waste your time waiting. 

Gushing over this one (not gushing over the grease pit hairdos on all of their models?)

And then this one

Anthro Sweater Coat (or this from Zara is similar and cheaper!) - I ended buying this and returning it during their last sale.  Super cute, but looked weird with a bump.  But, it's so warm and cute!

Madewell Fleet Jacket - the only military jacket I have ever worn...

This is the newer version of a Boden raincoat I have, which I get asked about often. (P.S. In my opinion, all of their jackets run small.)

Then there's this shorter version, which would be so cute for travel, hanging out about town. 

This winter coat (the J. Crew Chateau Parka) NEVER gets old to me.  It can be dressed up or down.  I'm on my second color now.  Best to size smaller for this one so it doesn't look overwhelming. I only buy J. Crew coats when they are on sale because they will at some point be at least 30% off.  As long as they don't run out of sizes. 

And this one - I've never gotten one of these, but I've heard good reviews and I'm in love with this color this year.  

Lastly, This vest is on my Christmas list. :)

Happy day, friends!  

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Current clothing faves.

Regular blogging, she said, right?  Whoops.  Seriously...I'm trying.  I swear I'll get more consistent.  Anyways...  

Madewell is killing me right now.  The idea of spending more on maternity clothes that won't fit in three months is too much to stand, but I am still running out of stuff to wear, so I decided to try some things on the in the store recently (Holla - store close to home!) and holy cow, they are winning this season.  Madewell is one of those brands that I find doesn't look as cute on the website or hangers as it does in person.  Here were my favorites...Some outer layers to wear over maternity tanks and tees and then a few other tops that can expand. 

This long cardigan.  I typically don't wear long cardigans because of my height, but this one seems to work - I think it must be the weight.  

Look at this you guys.  You are wearing a sweatshirt.  But you look like you are wearing a structured jacket.  BOOM. 

This shirt is incredible. Works with a belly, but would have bought without.  I sized up one size and am looking forward to wearing it after pregnancy as well.  I basically want it in every color.

Resisted this baby for now.  But it's so stinking cute.  It'd be a tunic with the bump for sure, but a dress otherwise.  :)

Also, here are those maternity jeans I keep talking about and wear them the majority of the week.   This was actually my first pair of madewell jeans.  Looking forward to trying some real ones postpartum.

{All photos from Madewell's site}

Other non-maternity clothing that works with the bump or otherwise (some of these are the ones I have posted on IG stories). Also, let's be honest - if it works with a bump, it will work with a mom belly (mom bellies unite!)...
- Caslon sweatshirt and peplum tee (long-sleeve version available now, too!) 
- Basically all of my work shirts have been from The Loft and most of them actually work the first 6- 7 months of pregnancy.  But, again, my favorites otherwise because mom belly and no ironing.  Ain't nobody got time for that. 

Also, for those specifically wanting maternity clothing ideas...
- My favorite maternity tees and tanks hands down from The Gap
- J Brand Mama J Jeans 
- Anything hatch collection - obsessed with their fall collection (but love this top specifically)
-Bodycon dresses from Target

Monday, August 21, 2017

Big earring roundup.

On to another post about something fluffy.  Earrings.  Because when everything around us is swirling - new town, new home, new school - for some reason I feel a little bit more in control when I put on some crazy big earrings and do my hair.  Haha.  Here are some I'm currently wearing or loving... Enjoy! 

These from Shop Waiting on Martha

And these from the same shop...

I don't think these Lizzie Fortunate Crater Earrings ever get old.

I wear these from Katie Kime all the time and get lots of compliments on them.  And maybe I'm a little biased, but I also love the Moroccan Pom Pom earrings. 


These from Anthro are pretty fabulous for a nice occasion, but not quite as large.  

These (on sale). 

And these Lisi Lerch ones I got as a gift and loooove them.  So fun.  Love the beaded tassels as well.

Happy Eclipse Day, All!

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Candle obsessions.

I'm going to do it, you guys.  I'm going to attempt to blog regularly after a long, long hiatus.  The last 4-5 years of our lives still feel like they were somewhat of a blur and although a lot of the fog lifted after Zach graduated, the past few weeks have been the first time we've all had a regular schedule in years.  It's pretty wonderful, but to be honest, it feels a bit foreign and weird, but I'm going to soak it up.  And, this is one of the ways I plan on doing that.  I do still plan to give an update on our move (a lot of you liked the fact that you knew what was going on in our lives when I blogged :), but for now, I move on to a silly post.  About my favorite candles. 

I really want our new house to feel like a home, and for it to have its own scent that my kids know when they walk in the door. So, I hopped over to Anthro the other day to stock up {the fact that hop and Anthro can now be in the same sentence makes me pretty giddy} and oh, my word, the choices.  Here are the current ones we have burning.  Tip from the Anthro employee- if you want that "fill your home" type of scent -stick to the Illume brand (they make the Capri Blue ones- if you look on the website, simply search "Illume"). Her other tip -  make sure to burn for a full 2-3 hours the first time so it burns evenly the rest of the times you use it.  I have the first three all burning on the first floor and they don't seem to clash.  Links are below photos and the photos are pulled from the Anthropologie site. 

This one smells amazing and the ceramic container if fabulous, but the scent isn't going last quite as long - I have this in the kitchen.  

Gold Cinched Candle in Blackberry Absinthe - This starts to smell like fall and the scent lasts forever.  It's incredible.  And it has that cute gold stand.  This one is a seasonal collaboration between Anthro and Illume. 

Capri Blue Volcano - this candle can do no wrong.  It fills the whole house.  It's the signature Anthropologie scent you think of when you enter the store. 

Voluspa Mokara - I only use this one in small spaces because it doesn't last as long, but it smells amazing.  The store clerk said it's simply that the scent is lighter - the brand's other scents last longer. 

Other options I love:   Theseand these, and then when the weather gets cooler... I plan to get these and then this one from Bath and Body Works never fails.  

Saturday, February 11, 2017


You guys.  These are by far these worst videos ever made.  Yet I made them.  That's your first piece of information.  Second - why?  Why on earth would you post these silly, low-quality videos?
I've had some people ask about my hair recently, specifically the waves/curls I've been doing.
And, we've all talked about getting together, but sometimes it just doesn't work out.  So, here you go.  I can't wait to get my first thumbs down on YouTube.  Also, I am completely aware that there are much more important things going on in the world right now. 🙂

The main product that makes the difference for me is my curling iron, The Beachwaver (I use the S1 most of the time, S .75 less often).  I swear I'm not trying to sell it. I just really, really like it.   I realize it is a lot of money for a curling iron, so it's an investment (the 20 % off coupons from Ulta apply to this product when they're available and you can apply for their points system - I got mine for 60% off doing this!).  There are a lot of other great options, but I'm not very skilled at those (curling wand seems to be most common, using the flat iron to curl).  With this one, you literally clamp you hair and press a button, hold it for 5-7 seconds, and ta-da!  They post tutorials on Instagram often - you can make a few different types of curls depending on how you use it.  I typically use the curling iron diagonally for normal/beachy waves.  If you use it horizontally, you'll have those crazy glam curls/Princess Kate bouncy hair.  For me, it's been worth the investments as far as hair products go.  Anyways, here are the videos...more info in them.   The other products I talk about are linked below.  Also, hair goals: Liz Adams, Haute Off the Rack, and Jillian Harris - always. 

This video is more about the products I use and how I dry my hair.   If you want to skip the fluff, go to video two.

And this one is more about the curling/Beachwaver.   Big takeaways - if you want lots of curl that lasts all day, use smaller sections and hold for longer.  Bigger curls that don't stay as tight - larger sections and don't hold as long. 

Product Links:
 {Locally I buy my Aveda Products at Salon Euphoria and the other products at Ulta or Nordstrom}
Drybar Triple Sec (Similar and smells amazing: Oribe Texturizing Spray)

Monday, December 9, 2013

Our Minted Cards.

Can you guys believe we're only 16 days from Christmas?? Holy cow!  It's crazy.
Anyways, I think this is one of the first years I'm going to get our cards out on time (I swear they would have been sooner if it hadn't been for this crazy winter storm).  I already wrote about the card options Minted has this year, and how much I love the foil press.  So, here's what we chose for our cards.  I'm really, really happy with them.  The foil press is oh, so pretty.  And, what I like almost more is the fact that I barely had to address any of the cards.  I used the address assistant - you basically put all of your addresses into an excel file and upload it properly and it saves them all (you can always edit later).  So, now we have them for parties, Christmas next year, etc.  And, I already had an excel file, so I simply copied and pasted, making the process easy-peasy (p.s. tip - to upload it requires certain areas to be filled - if you think you will have that information later, it will accept it if you just write something (for instance, addresses I couldn't find I made 111 Main St. so I could edit those on the Minted site later).

P.S.  It's not too late to order your cards.  And they still happen to have some good deals going on, including 15% off and free shipping on cards, and 15% off 3 or more gift items.  Here are a few of my favorite gift items below.

This "Little Mister" Print. (seriously love)

Happy Monday, all!

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Changing it up.

 We've done a little switching up in the living room.  Our arrangement was like this before (except we had added an ikea shelf as our tv stand).  It was nice and cozy, and to be honest, I really liked it.  BUT, it only officially seated 4 people (3 comfortably), and it was feeling very, very small with all of Eloise's toys.  It was time for an overhaul.  As sad as I was to take E's kitchen out of here (she just loves it so much), I'm glad we did.  We've reduced her down to two toy bins in this room to reduce the extra stuff.  We inherited a chair from some friends who are moving, and brought E's rocker in here as well (tore my heart apart a little).  And here is the result - seating for six or seven and a lot less clutter. 

P.S.  I know I have a lot of Christmas decorations up already, but I really feel this isn't decorated enough yet.  I think it needs a little more warmth to it, maybe?

Taking out E's rocker and switching up the TV stand meant moving this shelf to her room…and we made room for the kitchen.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Out of the comfort zone.

I'd been talking about wanting biker boots recently.  I know, weird.   And out of my comfort zone. But they're trendy, and something about them appeals to me.  SO, Zach was kinds enough to pick some out for me (really sweet) recently as a surprise.  Sadly, they were a bit narrow at the ankle, and my generous hips just don't do well with that.  So, I found some similar, but a little more flattering to my shape to get instead.  These babies - in the photo above.  I'm pretty pleased.  Plus, they're super comfy (If you EVER, ever want shoes that will last you the whole day - look no further than Cole Haan - they made the best decision ever when they paired with Nike).  Now I just have to get up the guts to wear them.  Skinny jeans and chunky sweaters, here they come!  {P.S.  I found mine at TJMaxx - they're called the "Alix" Moto Boot}.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013


 This. Girl. - I love her.

Two is hard sometimes, you know that?  So fun and so taxing - all at the same time.  
This little person becoming their own human being, little by little. 
Our girl, she is very much her own person.  Stubborn, strong-willed.  But sweet and cuddly.  And SO much fun.  
Asking Jesus for help as we aim to shape this little being - allowing her to blossom, yet to obey.
In my frustration sometimes I imagine this will of hers standing up to something more substantial in the years to come (not just potty training or foods she dislikes), which gives me some relief - She'll stand strong to her faith being rocked; She'll ward off that idiot of a boy (they'll all be idiots in my opinion, I assume) who thinks he is worthy of her attention.

He has created her this way - our feisty, silly, sweet little girl.  I am so thankful.

{Photos thanks to Elena Brown}

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Minted at Christmas!

Christmas is coming!! I'm getting kind of (ok - more than kind of) giddy with excitement.  
And on that note, I've been checking out Christmas cards options.  These foil printed cards from Minted  are on the top of my list.  Seriously, foil-press, I heart you.  I can't decide which one is my favorite.  
{Um, also - they have glitter envelope liners.  Yep.}  

P.S. - 15% off foil-pressed cards right now (and some other deals, too)! :)  

Other favorites from the Minted Holiday collection include the more budget-friendly petite cards and postcards.

I recommend taking a look.  :)  My favorites below {click on photos for links}: