Monday, April 20, 2015

Ann Taylor 50% Off Semi-Annual Sale Favorites!





One of the things I love most about spring when freshening up my wardrobe is all of the amazing sales that take place! I have a number of retailers that are my go-to for classic pieces (since that is what I build my wardrobe on) and today one of my favorite shops, Ann Taylor, is having their fabulous semi-annual spring sale offering 50% OFF of EVERYTHING and they're even providing free shipping! It ends tonight though so definitely take advantage. What's great is that they have almost every size stocked in every style still! They offer everything from regular sizes and petite to tall sizing for us taller gals!

What I love most is the versatility in their pieces and that they range from polished professional pieces for the workplace to refined yet cozy weekend wear. Their style is always current and spot on, never over the top, you can truly build a great closet filled with essentials that you'll have for many years to come and yet their price point makes it an affordable way to create a wardrobe of pieces that you'll love and are easy to co-ordinate with one another.

Today I'm sharing my favorite pieces from the sale, you can click on any of the images and it will take you straight to the item on their website. Be sure to use the code: CYBER50 at checkout!











I've been meaning to add some new white denim to my closet as well as some ankle length pants so these white modern skinny ankle jeans are the perfect solution. This caftan style top will go perfectly with them too! What essentials are you hoping to add to your wardrobe this Spring?

Happy Shopping!

XO

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Classy Woman Fashion Favorites for March





Spring has officially arrived and it's so wonderful to look forward to warmer days spent outdoors sipping lemonade on the porch, having lunch with friends at an outdoor cafe or enjoying a picnic in the park. For us Floridians we've already been enjoying this weather for months but as someone who grew up in the north, it was the time of year I always looked forward to so I could wear sandals again!

As much as I love my essential staple neutral colors and classic crisp white paired with black for spring, for me, pops of color and pretty patterns such as florals are what truly defines my spring wardrobe. I recently bought this floral peplum top (for just $30) which looks great with both skirts and denim along with my new pale gray wedge sandals. There are so many wonderful colors on trend for spring such as poppy/tomato red, blush pink and powder blue to name a few that I'm excited to add to my closet. I've put together a photo boutique above (you can click any image and be taken straight to the retailer) of all my March favorites that I think you'll love just as much. If you're looking for something pretty to wear on Easter Sunday,  this dress in 'vintage
sky' color is perfect. Below I've linked to some fun sales happening right now!


  • ANN TAYLOR- 40% OFF your entire purchase w/code: GOSPRING
  • BANANA REPUBLIC- 40% OFF your purchase (including sale items!) w/code: BRGOOD
  • J.CREW- 25% OFF purchase of $100+ w/code: SPRINGSTYLE
  • JOIE- Up to 50% OFF women's apparel & accessories + FREE shipping.
  • LOFT- Extra 40% OFF sale styles
  • REVOLVE CLOTHING- Various spring styles on sale + free shipping
  • SHOPBOP-25% OFF sitewide Friends & Family sale w/ code: SPRING25 ends: 04/09
  • WHITE HOUSE/BLACK MARKET- Up to 60% OFF dress + skirt sale


If you haven't heard of Revolve Clothing yet, I highly recommend checking them out! I discovered them about a year ago and they have some of the most stylish and pretty dresses, tops and cover-ups around (they also happen to have some cute items on sale right now). Like Nordstrom (one of my favorite stores), they too offer free shipping + free returns always, no matter what your purchase amount is. Total hassle-free shopping in my opinion!

Update: Even though it's now April, I haven't had a chance to put together my April Favorites so I'm sneaking in one more sale because it's pretty awesome! Shopbop has everything on sale 25% off for their Friends & Family sale, it's certainly one not to miss and ends 04/09. I've got my eye on these gold woven heeled sandals. They would go with so much in my wardrobe. I'm also loving these other items below:





I'd love to hear what you have on your wish list for spring! What is your favorite item here?

Thanks for stopping by!

XO

Sunday, March 29, 2015

5 Thoughtful Ready-Made Mother's Day Gifts




Lately it feels as though this year is just zooming by, doesn't it? I feel like we just celebrated Christmas and the start of 2015 and now we're looking forward to Easter in just a week's time. I've also been thinking about another special day...Mother's Day. It's hard to believe it's just 6 weeks away! I try to stay organized and prepare a bit early every year as my mom lives in Canada and I always have to factor in extra shipping time for gifts being sent from Florida. I try to be as creative as possible and mail something meaningful in lieu of time spent together during an experience such as a treatment at a spa, enjoying lunch or an outdoor mother-daughter date as we once did before.

Now that I'm a mother myself, I have a better ideas as to what most want and need when it comes to a tangible present so I'm putting together a little list below in case you're also the type who likes to plan in advance (or at least pins things to revisit later once early May rolls around). This is not a DIY homemade gifts kind of post, it's the opposite, so if you're super busy like I am right now, you can order these easily. Everything here is ready-made but are still thoughtful and practical gifts she'll truly use and enjoy.






5 Thoughtful Mother's Day Gifts


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1.  Fresh Flowers- As someone who loves receiving a beautiful arrangement, it's something at the top of my list which I always include above and beyond any wrapped up gift that makes its way via snail mail. One online shop recommendation for beautiful bouquets is to buy flowers for Mothers Day from Fresh Flowers. Since I'm not able to be physically be present with her and show up at her doorstep with a bouquet in hand, it's a gesture she always enjoys (and tells me how it brightened her day) when I call her. If you live long distance from your mother, alongside another gift or delivered on its own, a bright & cheery bouquet will always make her smile.

2.  Plated Gift Subscription-Whether your mom is retired and has a lot of free time on her hands, is very active and prefers quick + easy meals or is looking for healthier meals comprised of whole foods that take less than 30 minutes to make, the chef-inspired meals by Plated can be delivered straight to her home with all the ingredients already perfectly portioned. It's a great way to try new recipes without having to invest in a bunch of ingredients she may never use again such as spices and frees up extra time spent at the grocery store. Each recipe comes complete with step-by-step instructions and is sure to please.

3.  At-Home Facial Brush- As much as we all enjoy spa treatments, it's so nice to have a tool that can be used whenever you want, wherever you want (perfect for travel!) in the comfort of your own bathroom. The Clarisonic Mia always leaves my skin feeling super soft and my pores ultra clean. It is actually proven to cleanses\ 6x better than with just cleanser and water alone, important for preventing aging and keeping skin healthy and youthful. My mom and I both love our Mias as we are pretty natural with our makeup when we wear it but they also offer versions for those such as a a makeup removal expert brush or a deep pore cleansing brush for those who need a bit of a deeper clean.  Another cool handheld brush product for giving you an at-home experience is their pedi version. Their Pedisonic softens rough heels-perfect for sandal season!





4.  Cute Pair of Flats- No matter what our age, every woman needs a pair of go-to flats that are not only comfy but equally stylish and pretty. Below are some of my favorites-perfect for spring! I have several pairs as a mother to an active toddler that I'm pretty much living in these days. Here are some of my favorites which are perfect for all ages.





5.  New Handbag- I don't know any woman who doesn't love the feeling of a gorgeous new handbag on their arm. The last time I visited my mom I helped her pick out a new handbag as well as a cross-body bag since she does a lot of walking and running errands by foot locally. When choosing the perfect gift for your mother, choose something totally different from what she already owns. Instead of black, tan or white (which are common neutral bag choices) gift her with the boldness of a bright color or this season's must-have new neutral, blush, which I'm sharing below.





What gifts do you OR your mother most appreciate receiving for Mother's Day?


Thanks for reading!

XO




This post was brought to you by FreshFlowers.com/au


*photo credits: 1 || 2

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Freshen Up Your Workout Wardrobe for Spring



Workout clothing can be a fashion statement for some or an afterthought for others. If we're going to invest time into building a strong, healthy body, it deserves more than a pair of baggy sweats and an old t-shirt, wouldn't you agree. Not to mention, those don't flatter and are anything but feminine. When it comes to investing money into active wear, it might as well be fun and fashionable as much as it is practical.

There is definitely a surplus of black yoga pants, shorts, capris, running leggings and the like to be had but let's face it, black (while a great staple) can get boring after a while. With this being the first week of spring, I encourage you all to add some color and style to your workouts. I know my drawers of active wear could certainly use a boost! So, I've been on the hunt for some new pieces and I've compiled my favorite pieces which include a lot of head bands that will keep hair in place and stay put. Whether you have long hair or short (I've had both), it's always a challenge. There's nothing more annoying than having to redo your hair while in the middle of  yoga class because it's turned into a hot mess as your hairband slid off during mid-downward dog. Many people find new workout gear motivates them, so if you're just beginning a new program, that's a great place to start. Whether you're a runner, tennis enthusiast, yoga devotee, Pilates enthusiast, spinning junkie or you just love a good workout with weights, you're going to want to stock up on some classy yet playful attire to keep you looking forward to your sessions.




I can admit that my go-to for bottoms in the past have almost always been black (although I do balance that out with a bright top whether it's hot pink or a bright neon yellow). My reasons were always that they don't show sweat and are slimming but there are many colors and patterns that offer those same benefits. So, I've been thinking about switching things up lately and I'm loving all the gorgeous patterns and colors I've been seeing for bottoms! Life is too short to wear boring clothes. Activewear it actually a great place fashion-wise to venture outside of your comfort zone, it's a category where you can be a little more daring and not take yourself too seriously.

Below are some of my favorite options that include bold color, pattern and design yet are completely practical and functional at the same time to get the most from your workout. You'll notice that I've included a couple black pieces because I really liked the overall design-one includes a lace look, the other has a great back. Click on any of the images and you'll be taken straight to the item source with more details.





If you've just begun working out for the first time and looking for basic, classic pieces, I wrote this article on What to Look for in Your Workout Gear.

Have you picked up any colorful pieces that you'll be wearing to the gym or outdoors soon? If you liked this post, feel free to share the love or pin the top image in this post to Pinterest.

Thanks for Reading!

XO




* image credit

Monday, March 23, 2015

Manners Monday Challenge: Go 24 Hours Without Complaining



Yesterday, I posted my usual 'Sunday's Thought' on our Facebook Community Page, however this time I posted a little challenge that starts today for the next 24 hours. Feel free to join myself as well as the others to go without complaining for the entire day starting whenever you come across this post! I shared it via Instagram too and one reader actually suggested it as a family challenge and tagged her family members which I think is an awesome idea to change the dynamic inside of our homes.

You may remember me sharing my New Year goals and how complaining less was on the short list of things I really wanted to work on for 2015. As a Christian woman who desires to live like Christ and follow biblical principles, what I know for sure is that God doesn't bless complaining. In fact, there are many scriptures confirming this and we are commanded to be thankful in all circumstances and for all things. Regardless of your spiritual background (or lack thereof), I think we can all agree that murmuring is not very becoming of a lady.


I really believe that if we truly want to enjoy our life to the fullest, we must discipline ourselves by fighting the urge to complain. Instead, we can find gratitude in the very same circumstance. It's much easier said than done and something that I'm still working on myself every single day. Doesn't it seem as though the times we really try to be cognizant of this area and work towards doing better that it's precisely when life throws us a bunch of curve balls and allow us to cross paths with people that will test this even more? Knowing this, I'm already going into today expecting it but choosing to redirect my thoughts before they become the words that I utter. 






You might be wondering why I included this in our Manners Monday series. In a previous post I wrote about how Complaining Isn't Classy. Etiquette and good manners are all about choosing our actions and words wisely, that we may make others around us feel comfortable. Have you ever been around someone who goes on and on endlessly about something that's making them unhappy? Of course, we all have. We may even live with people who do it regularly. It's an uncomfortable feeling when you're on the receiving end listening and can feel like such a drain of your time and emotional energy. Asking questions or chiming in with a comment to be a polite conversationalist may only encourage and prolong the negativity. That's the thing about complaining, it can quickly spiral out of control if we're not careful and it will alienate those around us. It will cause others to no longer find us good company and it becomes part of our...wait for it....REPUTATION. I don't know about you but that is the last thing I want to be remembered for or have as part of my lasting legacy here on earth. 

For me personally, if I can be honest with you (although there is never a good excuse for complaining), a lot of my past complaints began a few weeks after the birth of our daughter as I felt exhausted and overwhelmed by my new role and wasn't receiving the help and support that I was asking for from my husband. I think this happens a lot for new mothers so I know I'm not alone. When you don't have any family surrounding you that lives nearby or is willing to help, it can feel very lonely. My asking eventually turned into complaining. Over time I became the kind of wife that I really never wanted to become which was a nag. At the time, I felt like I was drowning with so much to do and such little time, with a lack of help and sleep which was later magnified when he took a work position overseas for 6 months while she was still just a young baby at 5.5 months old. I know many of you mothers can relate-especially the single mothers, as women we naturally take on the majority of the workload in the domestic arena and it can feel very overwhelming sometimes. 

I was desperate for some time for myself but at the end of the day, I recognized that complaining wasn't helping our situation. In fact, it was starting to drive us apart and when I really started paying attention to the words that were coming out of my mouth along with my tone, I didn't like who I was starting to become and that was my turning point. One of my biggest complaints was that he wasn't spending enough time with her and although I felt frustrated at times, I had to make the decision to see it from another perspective-that although I wasn't getting that alone time I craved and needed, not spending more time with his daughter was his own loss! She was never going to be that age again and if he didn't make the time now, he would be the one losing out in the end vs. focusing on what I was missing out on. Sometimes we just need to adjust our lens to see things in a new way. That was what got me through, knowing I was getting to savor every precious moment I could of baby time with my girl.





In life we're either part of the problem or part of the solution. There is so much power in the latter. In the end, after a bit of trial and error both while she was jut a few months old and then again once hubby arrived back home from living overseas and Lily had turned a year old, we finally got into more of a groove and a schedule that works for both of us given our current lifestyle right now. It's not perfect but it's constantly evolving and I'm continuing to be grateful for the time he spends with her and the new ways he continues to step up as a father. Lily adores her time with her daddy (as does he) and I have found new ways to ask for help with her and around our home that he will respond to. It's definitely made for a happier home.

There is always more than a single perspective...what one person sees as an annoyance, another finds the blessing in. Look for the silver lining even when it's different from what you wanted, hoped for, prayed for or planned on. I truly believe what we focus on becomes bigger and multiplies. So, let it work in your favor! 


Let me know in the comments below if you plan to join our little challenge! Did you like this post? Be sure to pin the image above to Pinterest to encourage others to try this challenge in their own life as well.

Thanks for reading!

XO


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