Good As Gold // Because, Monday

Happy Monday! I know it’s a tough one to take on, especially after the kind of weekend that you never want to end. That’s why I’m bringing you a few of my favorites, because – Monday!

There was a time when gold was associated with the likes of pirates, the 80’s, and of course – Mr. T. This is not that time!

I completely adore gold, and tend to lean towards the tone when purchasing the majority of my jewelry. I love to mix metals as well, but gold is a staple. With so many of my favorite pieces being vintage, it is really no surprise that gold has found its way into my heart, and onto my wrist.

Good as Gold (Jewelry)

 

 

1 // Lulu Frost Code Rings – These rings are insanely priced, but I love the look of stacking them together, especially for a significant date. Most might choose to spend $440+ per ring on something like their birthday, or wedding date. I would opt to go with a “2” for my stuffed animal, Two, but wouldn’t be opposed to a “13” as well. After all, “B” is the second letter of the alphabet and “M” is the thirteenth – with my birthday falling on 2/13! On the plus side, Lulu Frost has the absolute most amazing customer service, and someday I’ll treat myself to a few of these beauties…

2 // Oscar de la Renta Tassel Earrings – What is better than ODLR, tassels, and CLIP ON EARRINGS?! Nothing. Except pizza maybe. But really – nothing! I rarely wear earrings, but can imagine wearing these even with a t-shirt and boyfriend jeans. If you want the same look, but don’t have $400 to spend on good ol’ Oscar, this Etsy seller has a great selection of nearly identical earrings.

3 // Jonathan Adler Zebra Dish – Can we really ever have too many jewelry dishes? This one is so groovy glam, that I just can’t imagine it as the soap dish Nordstrom’s refers to it as. It deserves to live a better life than that!

4 // Signature Necklace – Start practicing your handwriting – this is a need! Had this been available 10 years ago, Carrie Bradshaw would have worn it in gold and owned the acrylic version from Bauble Bar too!

5 // Ampersand Ring – The ampersand is the new heart shape.

6 // Kate Spade Two Tone Watch – I have been not so patiently waiting for Kate Spade to come out with the perfect two-tone bracelet watch, and this one almost checks all my boxes! While Kate is my girl, I can’t quite commit since these watches feel so light in comparison to the boyfriend feel of Michael Kors.

7 // Stella & Dot Renegade Cluster bracelet – The perfect piece to your arm party. I often find myself grabbing every bracelet I see and throwing them on before I leave the house, and this is the kind of piece I would pick up daily. Gold. Spikes. Bling – Done!

 

:: Crop it like it’s Hot ::

When I was in second grade, I got called into the office.

As a gifted and talented student who was running away with the win for number of books read that month, I was really confused. After arriving at the office, already feeling guilty for whatever I did not remember doing, I was given the phone to call my mom and get a change of clothes. This was just the beginning of being sent home for my sartorial selections. But that day – it was for a crop top.

I know, I know – why were you wearing a crop top to school?! Well, it was an outfit, and it was a rather adorable one at that. Not only did I have this outfit, my my sister had a matching one (le duh!).

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I love donuts, so you can imagine that I’m not a big belly barer – HOWEVER, I’m loving the high waist pants/skirts/shorts/crop top trend because, unless I’m reaching for the top shelf at Target (ugh – tall people), you never see a hint of skin!

Also, I’ve been living in this outfit, so if you see me within the next month and I’m in the same thing over and over again – sorry I’m not sorry.

 

Top:: H&M, Skirt:: J.Crew Factory, Bag:: Kate Spade, Sandals:: Coach (old), Necklace:: Max & Chloe, Watch:: Anthropologie, Ring:: Lulu Frost

Top:: H&M (Almost identical AND on sale!), Skirt:: J.Crew Factory, Bag:: Kate Spade (need this one, on sale! and looks like the Celine I would give my firstborn (but not my dog) for, Sandals:: Coach (old, love these), Necklace:: Max & Chloe, Watch:: Anthropologie (old, but you can totally find it in stores), Ring:: Lulu Frost (these people have THE best customer service)

 

We really liked matching outfits…

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Beauty B // Face Forward

I like to pretend I’m not a creature of habit, but when it comes to skincare – I most certainly am! After years of fighting breakouts, I can tell you nearly everything you need to know about every product on the face of the planet. During the year I was on acutane (high octane acne medication, which takes the Disney Villain approach – makes you a complete basketcase, but look flawless), I also tested out every moisturizer and chapstick known to man.

My mom has great skin, but since genetics didn’t bless me with her clear, smooth complexion, I’m going to go ahead and make my own luck. Here are my favorite products to help you put your best face forward this summer!

 

Beauty B - Summer Face

1// Jack Black Lip Balm – Lemon & Chamomile, 2// LUSH Beauty Ocean Salt Scrub, 3// FAB Beauty Ultra Repair Cream, 4// Smashbox Photo Finish Color Correcting Cream, 5// Supergoop Sunscreen, 6// Sugar Berry Lip Balm

1//I keep a Jack Black Lip Balm with me at all times. There is one in my purse, on my nightstand, one in my car, and another in my tote bag. All of the Jack Black chapsticks are amazing, but this one is the perfect blend of fresh. Plus, it reminds me of wandering through Los Olivos and picking up little finds like this one. And the wine purse clutch. And a bowl with a bunny in it. Because – tourists!

2// Thanks to my friend Brittany, I’ve developed an obsession with LUSH products. Call me an animal-loving,  save the world smelling like coconut water hippie (I’ve been called worse), but this stuff is where it’s at. The Ocean Salt scrub is gentle enough for my crazy skin, but leaves it feeling smooth as glass.

3// If FAB Beauty makes it, I buy it. Each morning and night, I use their cleanser and apply the Ultra Repair Cream. It does not burn, sting, or irritate my skin in the slightest, and protects it all day and all night.

4// I have always had a red tone to my skin, and it is SO annoying when trying to find the right make-up, without looking like I forgot my sunscreen. A pageant friend let me borrow her Smashbox Photo Finish Primer cream in clear, which took all the shine away, even under the Miss Oklahoma stage lights. It was a true miracle. THEN I discovered the green cream. Game over, red skin!

5// I received a Supergoop sample in my Birchbox one month. Now I won’t buy anything else.

6// Ok. So Jack Black makes an incredible lip balm, but if you’re willing to spend an extra $10-$15, and get a lip color out of it – this is a winner. The berry tone is just dark enough to pass for a lipstick, but isn’t as heavy as what you normally might wear. Perfect for summer, or honestly, anytime.

 

What are some of your favorite summer skincare products?

:: Flitter Flutter ::

You know those things in your closet that just make you happy? This skirt is one of them.

Of course the fit, the flounce, the twirlability – everything is enough to release the happiest of endorphins. Because endorphins make you happy, and happy people just don’t shoot their husbands! (Couldn’t resist.)

But beyond how fun this skirt is, it reminds me of twenty of my favorite little people (and an awesome co-teacher).

Gilbert had the genius idea to send off for a caterpillar cove. We received this disgusting jar with hairy caterpillars, who ate whatever dirt/jelly substance was inside (ew. totally ew). It was nearly impossible to keep twenty sets of preschool hands off the jar. After the caterpillars create their cocoon, they are hanging by a literal thread, and if they fall, they die.

Needless to say, when it was finally time to move them into their Butterfly Lair, few were left. It was like Survivor: Room 8 Edition.

Gilbert and I had all but given up hope, and were about to send in for our refund. One morning we came in, and noticed something was  moving in the Pop-Up Butterfly House.

IT LIVED!

After several weeks, dozens of grabby hands, and a near-death experience, we had one lone butterfly ranger. After naming him Nemo (shocker), we took the kids outside and had a release party. They were amazed that something which used to crawl so slowly around the jar was now this lovely, orange butterfly. It flittered and fluttered all around our group, Ms. B screaming kids screaming, and cheering Nemo on to take the flight of his life. While I have a lot of memories about the perils of preschool, that is one which I will never forget. Plus, it’s one of the few stories I have which doesn’t involve a four-letter-word that starts with “p.”

 

Top:: Forever 21, Skirt:: Chic Wish, Shoes:: DVF, Necklace:: Bauble Bar, Ring:: Lulu Frost, Bag:: Kate Spade

Top:: Forever 21, Skirt:: Chic Wish, Shoes:: DVF (similar), Necklace:: Bauble Bar, Ring:: Lulu Frost, Bag:: Kate Spade (love this)

 

:: Take a Napa ::

 

However, in these pants… I could really go either way!

After spending a weekend in the Dallas patio heat, I totally understand why women brunch in Lulu Lemon. They don’t do it because it makes their butt look awesome (even though those pants are the next best thing to a plastic surgeon), they do it because the fabric is sweat wicking and they look like they are glowing instead of dripping. I was a shining example of the latter.

What I love about these pants, is that they are socially acceptable. They are as soft as pajamas, but make me feel like I should be sipping wine in Napa! When my friend Josh lived in LA, I visited for a week and we took a trip to the Santa Ynez Valley to see Los Olivos and Solvang – two of my most favorite places ever.

I fell in love with the most adorable dutch town where we ate fabulous danishes, baked fresh from I kid you not – a building that looked like a windmill. We roamed from tasting room to tasting room, trying dozens of wines and playing the part of tourist. However, the adorable clutch that Josh insisted I must get, turned out to be the wine tote I’m toting around.

Napa – I’m ready for ya!

Top > H&M, Pants > Anthropologie, Clutch > Local Winery Find, Shoes > DVF, Necklace > Dillard's, Rings > H&M

Top > H&M, Pants > Anthropologie, Clutch > Local Winery Find, Shoes > DVF (love these), Necklace > Dillard’s, Rings > H&M


Father’s Day Gift Guide 2014

Have you ever read The Five Love Languages book? I have always loved to give gifts, often as an act of service to thank someone for doing something special or to celebrate a big occasion. Even my friend Libby says that I am so talented when it comes to thoughtful tokens of appreciation (and maybe get a little too overzealous when receiving them too) that I should be a professional Gift Giver.

As a special gift to my readers, I’m bringing you a peek into what I consider to be excellent Father’s Day gifts – most are even Carlos approved!

Father's Day 2014 Gift Guide1

Father's Day 2014 Gift Guide

1// James Bond Giftset 2// The Ultimate Beer Brewer’s Starter Day 3// J.Hilburn Custom Menswear 4//As Seen On TV’s Stufz 5// Money Soap 6// Wine Fridge 7// Personalized Golf Balls

 

1. James Bond Giftset – Do I even need to explain this? Whether he is more like Clark Griswold or Pierce Brosnan, he will appreciate the entire collection of Bond, James Bond.

2. Beer Brewing Class – For one Father’s Day, we sent my dad off to a beer brewing class – and he was hooked. In fact, he loved it so much, that he gets together with his buddies and brews beer all the time. It’s a fun hobby, and his beer is awesome!

3. J. Hilburn Custom Menswear – When a friend asked if T would be interested in custom designed and cut menswear, I knew he would love it, so I joined the team! (Shameless Plug!) The clothing includes custom suits and shirts, plus a huge collection of ready to wear ties, cufflinks, polos, jeans, etc. at the same price point as Nordstrom’s or Dillard’s, but with the quality of Armani. After taking 15 measurements to ensure a perfect fit, I will work with you and the stylish (or not so fashion savvy) man in your life, to select everything from the collar style to the fabric. No more puffy waists or tight collars!

4. Stufz – You know those As Seen on TV commercials? My parents love them. I went home and my dad whipped up a three cheese stuffed burger with this gadget, and people – it was delicious! Think of the endless possibilities and creativity involved in crafting the perfect burger. This is a winner!

5. Money Soap – I bought my dad and Taylor’s dad this fun soap for Christmas. My dad immediately cut into his and found $1. Taylor’s dad used the soap for nearly a year, and found – $1. I suppose sometimes patience does not pay off, but they both got a kick out of it!

6. Wine Fridge – Because – life! This is the gift that keeps on giving. Every wino needs a place to store their treasured wines, and Wine Enthusiast has an incredible selection. Add that to my wish list as well….

7. Personalized Golf Balls – For the golfer with a sense of humor. We ordered these (exactly as pictured above) for Taylor’s dad, and he loved them. Sure, the guy is a scratch golfer – which made the golf balls that much more hilarious!

 

What’s the best gift you have given dad? I’m always looking for new inspiration to take my gift game to the next level!

 

:: More than 2 Chainz ::

It’s clear by now that you know I have a problem an affinity when it comes to jewelry. I’ve been layering for so many years, that it shouldn’t have surprised me when I was told I had scoliosis in the seventh grade.

Of course, at the ripe age of thirteen, I had no idea what it was and was certain I would die soon, but that little spine curvature hasn’t stopped me from much. I’m still kickin’ and still stackin’! When the Courtney Bib popped up on Bauble Bar I felt like I had found the holy grail of jewelry. Sure, it weighs the same amount as the prize watermelon at the county fair. However – every girl needs more than 2 Chainz in a statement piece!

 

Dress > Forever 21, Top > J. Crew, Necklace > Bauble Bar, Heels > Aldo, Clutch > , Bracelets >

Dress > Forever 21 (similar), Top > J. Crew (similar), Necklace > Bauble Bar, Heels > Aldo, Clutch > Christopher Kon, Bracelets > Anthropologie, C. Wonder (similar)

 

 

P.S. Thanks for all the welcome-back-you’re-not-alone-hang-in-there-your-thirties-are-worse messages! I couldn’t ask for better family, friends and complete strangers!

:: These Are My Confessions ::

I love donuts. Like, will eat a dozen if left alone with the box. My favorite drink is red, red wine. By the fourth of every month, my “shopping budget” is almost always kaput. My only motivation for doing cardio is fitting into my spring/summer 2010-2014 wardrobe watching Game of Thrones. I could be on hoarders if they ever found my costume jewelry collection.

 

These are just a few of my not so fabulous habits.

 

Isn’t it so easy to not love yourself? The day we took these photos, the wind was hitting 30 mph, plus it was hot. My boyfriend jeans were looking more “mom” than “boyfriend” and my necklace kept slapping me in the face. Are you really that surprised when I tell you that I wasn’t being my best self? After an unsuccessful go at using positivity to encourage me, Taylor gave in and took me for a Sangria pitcher.

Problem momentarily solved.

 

The past few months have been full of peaks and valleys (more valleys, and clearly – I wasn’t up to blogging at that time), and I was struggling to love myself. Call it a quarter-life crisis if you will, but I’m back and we’ll focus on moving forward and keeping up the as-expensive-as-therapy-hot-yoga, rather than being dark and twisty. No one tells you that your twenties are hard – but they are! People don’t actually travel Europe for months at a time, or have the money to be social every night, or buy everything they pin -AND, it’s not easy to make friends after college either. My friend Chelsie says it best, so go here for what I’m talking about. Social media gives us this opportunity to essentially “frame” our lives with all the cool places we are going and all the fun things we are doing. But no one posts what they look like when they’re late for work and their dog has had an accident the size of its four pound body. Because life happens.

 

And so for that reason, I’m giving you my confessions. Because – life! And – donuts!

 

Top: Kate Spade, Jeans: Gap, Bag: Kate Spade, Heels: Aldo, Necklace: Neiman Marcus, Rings: David Yurman, mom find, Bracelets: C. Wonder, Anthropologie, Coach

Top: Kate Spade, Jeans: Gap, Bag: Kate Spade, Heels: Aldo, Necklace: Neiman Marcus, Rings: David Yurman, mom find, Bracelets: C. Wonder, Anthropologie, Coach

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P.S. – I missed you all!