shopping

End-Of Summer Shopping

So I found this post from August in my drafts and realized that I never published it! Whoops!

Better late than never. Enjoy  🙂 —->

 

 

I’d say that this is the saddest, yet most exciting time of the year for most ladies. Summer is coming to an end (which is down right depressing), but Fall & it’s phenomenal fashion is just around the corner!

I took a mini shopping trip over the weekend to some of my favorite go-to bargain spots. I wasn’t in the mood to go spending money for the heck of it, so I told myself that I would only pick up things that I absolutely loved, that were suitable for work, and that would be good assets to my wardrobe!

I rarely go to the mall, but I had to make a trip to the Apple store. While I was there, I figured I would stop by Forever21 and H&M. I tried on a few things that I really liked, but didn’t meet my criteria for purchase – so I decided to sit on them and return another time if they stayed on my mind. Glad I did, because I kind of forgot about them already lol.

However, I did need a new tote for my laptop, and lucked out at H&M!

I love this bag! I actually had my laptop with me since I needed it for my Apple visit, so I was able to put it in the tote & try it out. I love the simple look, the extra pockets & the long/short strap options - huge bonus! (H&M, $24.00)
I love this bag! I actually had my laptop with me since I needed it for my Apple visit, so I was able to put it in the tote & try it out. I love the simple look, the extra pockets & the long/short strap options – huge bonus! (H&M, $24.00)

I’ve been on the hunt for fitted slacks – I always buy pairs that are too long & need to be hemmed (which I never do) so straight legged, ankle pants are my new go-to! I stopped by TJ’s to peruse their selection and found this great pair of navy blue Cynthia Rowley slacks. I’ve said it before & I’ll say it again – Cynthia Rowley designs are amazing! The quality, the fabrics, the fit! I swear. Everything I try on feels as though it was tailored just for me.

Paired with a cute top, belt  & pair of pumps - these are the perfect slacks for work!
Paired with a cute top, belt & pair of pumps or flats – these are the perfect slacks for work! (TJ Maxx $24.00)

Next to TJ’s is one of my high school faves, Mandees! I’m starting to feel a little too old for this store, but the cute & affordable finds keep driving me in!

Love a good peplum
I’m still digging the peplum trend. They are always good for a clean, classy & forgiving look. (Mandees, $16.99 – but I snagged it for 50% off!)
LOVED this jumpsuit in the dressing room!
I LOVED this jumpsuit in the dressing room…
...So I brought it home :)
…So I brought it home 🙂 This KIND of met my criteria, but I’ve been searching for the perfect jumpsuit for so long. It can be worn for a night out, casually during the day or to work with a small sweater & chunky necklace. Either way, I’m SO in love with it, two people in the store actually stopped me to say they had purchased it as well! Definitely my favorite find of the day ! (Mandee’s, $40)
Super cozy Fuchsia sweater
I was drawn to this super cozy Fuchsia sweater (front) immediately. They had it in a few other colors, but I thought that this one was perfect! I’m always trying to brighten up my wardrobe and avoid the tempting lure of black, white, and grey.
With the most adorable key hole/black bow on the back!
It has the most adorable key hole/black bow on the back! So feminine, yet still comfortable & warm. Best part? No need for a fancy bra – this just makes the cut 🙂 (Mandee’s $16.99)
So looking forward to breaking in these strappy pumps!
I always laugh because believe it or not, Mandee’s really does have a great shoe selection! I tried on so many pairs and finally settled on these pumps. This older woman came over and was gawking at the shoes, she ended up getting a similar pair! I can’t wait to break them in. (Mandee’s $24.00)

I’m really excited about my finds & the upcoming Fall season! I’ll definitely be keeping my eyes open & picking up some more pieces here & there!

Have you started Fall shopping?

Where did you score some good finds?

Ladies Weekend!

This past weekend I spent some quality time with so many of the special ladies in my life. Friday night I went out with some girlfriends to celebrate a 24th birthday. We did a little bit of bar hopping & a lot of catching up!

I don’t get to see these pretty faces as often as I’d like, so nights that we have one another’s undivided attention mean the world to me! 🙂

Kelly (the birthday girl!), Erin & myself
Kelly (the birthday girl!), Erin & myself Friday night

Random throwback:

Erin sent this to me the other day, and it makes me want to cry! It's she & I on our first day of Kindergarten :)
Erin sent this to me last week, and it makes me want to cry! It’s she & I on our first day of Kindergarten 🙂

I spent the night at my parents house because on Saturday morning we were waking up extra early for a family shopping trip with all of my Aunts, and my lady cousins.

Early morning photo-boothing :)
Early morning photo-boothing 🙂 (Missing a few pretty faces in this pic)

We had a great day together! We did some Christmas shopping, and enjoyed a lovely lunch . Every time we went into a store with baby clothes ALL of us couldn’t help but pick out the cutest baby outfits! We have serious baby fever – someone in the family needs to have a baby stat…maybe get married first lol!

The past few years I’ve become more adamant about spending time with my family. I would rather spend my day in their company than anything. I’m blessed to not only know, but be related to such beautiful people – all of my Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, etc. are kind, warm hearted, supportive, absolutely hysterical, and simply beautiful inside and out.  I wouldn’t trade them for the world!

Family photo from Thanksgiving :)
Family photo from Thanksgiving 🙂

Later that night I celebrated my sorority’s 10 year anniversary! I loved being a member of the Iota Delta chapter of Phi Sigma Sigma when I was in college. My greatest friends and memories from those four years are due to my sisters. People love to knock greek life, but unless you’ve experienced the sisterhood and the bond that stems from being part of a Pan-hel organization, it’s nearly impossible to explain.

It was awesome to all be in the same room & reminisce.

This obviously calls for some throwbacks:

At my initiation in 2007 with the rest of the lovely Kappas :)
At my initiation in 2007 with the rest of the lovely Kappas 🙂
Formal 2007!
Formal 2007!
Save the Ta-Ta's 2007
Save the Ta-Ta’s 2007
At our 5 year anniversary in 2007!
Some of the ‘Kiotas’ our 5 year anniversary in December 2007!
Toga!
Toga! 2008
Breast Cancer Walk 2008
Breast Cancer Walk 2008
Spring Break in Italy with some of my Greeks <3
Spring Break in Italy with some Greeks in 2009 <3
A mother's pinning in 2009
A mother’s pinning in 2009
Military Mixer 2009 :)
Military Mixer 2009 🙂
Fun night in 2009
Fun night in 2009
Rumble in the Jungle 2009
Rumble in the Jungle 2009
Rock-A-Thon
Rock-A-Thon 2010
MS Walk 2010
MS Walk 2010
Formal 2010
Formal 2010
Graduation in 2010
Graduation pic with two of my sisters in 2010 🙂 (Please excuse our extreme Jaundice lol)
At an alumni brunch in 2011
At a post-grad alumni brunch in 2011

Well that was depressing – and I barely put a dent in it. So many fun times. 🙂

Here are some pictures from Saturday’s 10 year reunion:

Me with 2 of my favorite Stephs!
Me with 2 of my favorite Stephs!

I wore a pleated cream skirt with a black Forever 21 button down shirt, black tights, double buckled black suede pumps, and a gold plated collar necklace.

My roomie & I :)
My roomie & I 🙂
Lauren, Alexis & I
Lauren, Alexis & I
The alumni in attendance - unfortunately, a lot of ladies couldn't make it :(
The alumni in attendance – unfortunately, a lot of ladies couldn’t make it 🙁
10y8
Group shot!

It was a great weekend. I love playing catch-up with people I haven’t seen in a while!

What were you up to this past weekend? Anything exciting? 🙂

The Big E!

There are only a few things that I truly look forward to every year, one of them happens to be The Big E! If you’re not from New England, you’re probably unfamiliar, but it is an annual 2-3 week fair that offers everything from rides, to games, to concerts, to animals, to shows, to terrible-for-you-but-oh-so-delicious foods!

My boyfriend and I went on Sunday. I was up bright and early, ready to go… he wasn’t as enthused LOL…

Naturally, I had been making a list of everything I intended to eat. Please excuse the sloppiness of my writing…for the record, the majority of these items were added when they came to mind (the middle of the night, at the grocery store, in the car)…

12 items- ambitious! (Creme puff? Surely a late night reminder lol)

Once we arrived, we decided that we would share everything (to avoid becoming too full). We started with a classic corn-dog, which was delicious!

From there we spotted the bloomin’ onions! Seeing as we are such fans of this Outback & Texas Roadhouse favorite, we wanted to try the Big E version!

We ate it with ranch & horseradish dipping sauces

I really wanted to love this…but I didn’t. It was tasty don’t get me wrong, but the onions were kind of hard, and the fried portion fell right off when you tried to pick up a piece. I don’t even think we ate 1/4 of it, we wanted to save our appetite. On to the next…!

The famous cream puff! SO GOOD! I really loved it, the filling was so cold & rich, it was almost ice cream-like.  Definitely a favorite. 🙂

Afterwards, we spotted an amazing booth that literally fried everything. PB&J, Brownies, Cookie Dough, Snickers Bars, Samoas, the list goes on ! I knew that the Samoas were new this year so we got an order…

I’m not sure, but I just may like the regular un-fried version a bit better- never the less these were delicious!

Bright sun made it hard to focus :-/

While at the same booth, my boyfriend wanted to try the fried cookie dough. I am not a big fan of raw cookie dough to being with, and was not a fan of these at all, but he loved them! Imagine biting into a warm, super melty ball of chocolate cookie dough…

At this point, we needed a break. So we walked around, did some shopping and played some games.

No luck 🙁
I picked up this $5 black evil-eye-esque bracelet 🙂
Always have to stop for basketball!
Just roaming around 🙂

Okay, back to the food. Mike failed me, he couldn’t put down anything else, but I had to get a loaded baked potato seeing as they are my absolute favorite!

Butter, sour cream, cheddar cheese, bacon bits & chives. The best way to order- YUM!

After that it was about time for me to check out too. We decided to get a caricatures drawn of us. The result had us dying!

It’s all fun and games to me- I expected to look goofy, but Mike was so offended and instantly thought he resembled…

N*SYNC’s very own….Chris Kirkpatrick!!

Aahahahahaahah!!!! We were laughing so hard, he could totally dopplegang him, but I still think he looks like someone else- I just can’t put my finger on it.

Giving his best goofy Chris smile. I didn’t think it was that bad! LOL

That was pretty much our trip to the Big E in a nutshell. Unfortunately, we put a measly dent in the list which may result in a second trip… but that was our own fault- our approach was all wrong. I don’t think you should eat all of those sweets at the beginning. We figured that many of the items we will still look forward to enjoying at other local, upcoming Fall festivals 🙂

Either way, we had a great time. If you are in the area and haven’t been, I highly suggest taking the trip to the Big E! They’ll be here through Sunday, September 30th!

Spontaneous Spring Shopping

The other night I randomly decided to go shopping, I needed to find some outfits for a couple of upcoming parties/events I was going to. I was trying to avoid Nordstroms because I know that they have this adorable coral Kate Spade Bag that I have literally been having dreams about, but am not ready to drop $500 on…

Isn't she so pretty? 🙂 Sigh. It may be an early birthday gift to myself...

So I took a trip to Marshalls instead- I was so excited with my finds! (Well most of them)

I tried on this super cute pants/jumpsuit, but it was SO huge! I was literally swimming/tripping over it. 🙁

I guess us short girls have to stick to our rompers… 😉

Ahh...can't wait for Summer country concerts 🙂

So, back to my shopping trip… I was looking for color! I’ve been trying to buy more (only) colorful clothes lately. Look at how cute these two dresses that I snagged are!

This green dress is perfect for summer- I actually thought it was a romper when I picked it up. It's so light and can be dressed up for work, or down for a picnic/weekend. I was excited about this find, and it was only $17 🙂
This was the winning ticket...I'm in love with this dress! Aside from the vibrant orange color, it is so comfortable, forgiving, and it was only $25 🙂

I was so thrilled with my dress finds, and I was completely content… until I walked by this black DKNY purse. I just could not turn away (probably because it reminded me of my Kate Spade dream bag :(…)! Every time I walked by I found myself picking it up, trying it on, feeling the ridiculously smooth leather, then putting it back. But every time I left I’d immediately turn right back around to make sure nobody else had grabbed it. The more I thought about it, I figured it’d be the perfect purse for work, going out, or any special occasion…and truthfully I don’t have a small bag like that. I had to have it…

Swoon!

When I got home I discovered all of it’s functionalities! It appears as a traditional 2-strap handbag, but can be converted to a 1-strap shoulder or cross body bag. How convenient. My purchase was justified 🙂

AND when I opened it up, I discovered that it came with a sham tucked inside! That is very rare for a Marshalls purchase!

What have you picked up lately? Anything fun or colorful?

Do You Have a “Want List”?

So as you know, I’m making a huge effort to spend less money this year, I’m really proud of myself because so far I’ve broken a number of bad spending habits that I had developed. I’ll do a full post on ways to save money in the near future, but today I just wanted to share one of the things I’ve been doing to keep myself and my wallet in check.

Create your want list….

Every time I have the urge to buy something, I add it to my “want list” instead of impulsively purchasing it (which I would have normally done). The best thing about doing this is that it creates some structure for my purchases. While in reality, I could go ahead and buy most of the things on here right now-I don’t need to. I’d rather wait until I needed certain items or until I found a really good sale before buying them.

Some things currently on my want list: a cute new day planner, more gel nail polish colors, a new barrel hairbrush, blue suede pumps, a healthy cookbook, the new iphone, new vanilla candles, and some colorful tights.

It’s smart to wait to buy things that you want; it wont leave you as strapped for cash when unexpected, but important things come up (a spontaneous girls night out, a birthday gift for someone, an oil change, a new bronzer after yours falls and cracks all over the bathroom floor (ugh!)etc.) and it gives you something to look forward to!

You may be surprised to find that sometimes the things you thought you really wanted make their way off of your list…you may change your mind and set your heart on something completely different! It’s definitely helped me resist the urge to impulsively spend.

What’s on your want list?

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