Happy Friday

Happy Friday everyone! We made it through another work week and it feels good. I can’t believe March has gone by so quickly, normally it is the slowest month of the year for me. This year, however, it has flown by and it already Easter next weekend. I hope you all have also had a fun and relaxing month, and are excited for all the new adventures that will come this Spring. I found a few things on the internet that excited me this week. Did you? If so please share in the comments!

Tea at Kensington Palace

My dad sent me these cartoons earlier in the week and I’ve enjoyed reading them. They are light hearted and relatively uplifting, the perfect accompaniment to a morning cup of coffee or tea. 

I have been in home decorating mode lately, especially since we moved, and have been re-inspired by pinterest. I hadn’t really used the site at all since the wedding, but these past few weeks I have really loved scrolling through looking for recipes and home decor ideas, not to mention style and beauty inspiration. You can follow me through the social link at the top of the page. Has anyone else felt the same way? 

Speaking of Pinterest, I love all the pins by Victoria Elizabeth Barnes. If you’ve never read her blog, it’s about her and her husband renovating their Victorian home and every blog is laugh out loud hilarious. I highly recommend starting with the piece about the kingdom mirror post.  

There are some goods sales this weekend. It’s a big gift with purchase week at Lilly Pulitzer! I love the garment bag and the luggage tag - so fun. I’m also in love with the new pink and green print, strapless shift, interchangeable sandals, and beachcomber earrings. Spring is here, so Lilly weather has begun! (btw- J.Crew is still doing 10-15% off! You can shop some of their affordable tees in my post from yesterday)

Finally, if anyone is looking to purchase second hand luxury bags they should read about this Chanel lawsuit first. You can definitely find authentic pieces in second hand stores, but it’s important to remember that it’s a buyer beware market and you need to really do your research first. 


Eight Best Affordable Tops Right Now


Bow Back Red Peplum Top / Flutter Sleeve Shirt / Lace Top / Ruffle Trimmed Tie-Front Top / Ruffle Sleeve Twist Hem Tee / Blue Stripe Ruffle Sleeve/ Drapey Cap Sleeve Top / Gingham Popover Top

I love a nice sundress, but I also love jeans an a nice, but affordable, top. Sometimes, however, when I go shopping for shirts I feel overwhelmed by the number of options on the market right now. After a lot of browsing, however, a found a number of shirts I absolutely love. I'm excited to share the eight best affordable tops right now with all of you, I hope you like them as much as I do.

Everything but the gingham popover is available in multiple colors too, and J.Crew is having a big sale so everything from them is an additional 10-40% off! There's nothing like having your favorite top in every color ;)

Have you found any great tops lately? Please share!


5 Tips for an at Home Spa Day

We went to the spa over the weekend for some much needed relaxation and massages. It was an amazing experience and as soon as I left I tried to write down all the details that had made it special and relaxing so I could recreate the experience at home and share it with all of you. I came up with 5 tips for an at home spa day which I believe will take our “Sunday Spa Days” to the next level.

5 Tips for an at home spa day

1. Make your towels hot and ice cold. Part of what felt so luxurious at the spa was that all of the towels were warmed up on a heated towel rack. To recreate that feeling at home, toss some fluffy towels in the dryer a few minutes before you bathe so that they are nice and warm. On the opposite side of the spectrum, they had towels in ice water next to the bath tub. The hot water in the bath and the cold towel on my neck and face felt amazing. To do this at home, put some slightly damp towels in the freezer the night before your bath, and put them in ice water next to the tub. 

2. The spa smelled amazing. At home, make sure you have candles lit in the bathroom, bedroom and any other room you will be resting in. Or, if you have an essential oil diffuser turn it on so the room smells divine. In addition, add any scented bubble bath or bath salts to your bath so that the scent wafts into the air while you soak. 

3. Use a cozy robe and slippers. I have a nice waffle weave robe and slippers, but I never remember to put them next to the tub when I take a bath, and often just put back on sweats. Walking around in a robe for a few hours at the spa felt very decadent and relaxing - like I had no where to go and nothing to do but let my body relax. To recreate this feeling at home,  make sure you have your robe and slippers ready to go and wear that at home for a few hours. 

4. Use essential oils. The spa added essential oils to everything - the bath, the massage, the pedicure, even the facial smelled delicious. To do this at home, purchase some essential oils from a market like Whole Foods and add them into your bath and into the water you soak your feet in if you are doing your toes. Also rub the oil into your pulse points after you have dried off. The essential oils not only smell good, they are very relaxing and are said to have health benefits. 

5. Shape your toes.  When I paint my toes at home I tend to trim them, and then add a few layers of polish. At the spa the technician really focused on buffing my heals, rubbing in moisturizer, and also shaping my toe nails. My toes look so much prettier and more refined then when I do it. To recreate a pedicure at home, soak your feet in a tub of warm water for a few minutes and then file your toes and buff your feet before rubbing in a shea butter based moisturizer. 

Here are some of my favorite at home spa day products  

Do you have any tips for elevating an at home spa day? Please share!  


How to Dry Your Wedding Bouquet

Since it’s almost wedding season, I thought it would be helpful if I began to share some of my favorite wedding tips - these will be the tips and tricks that I found to be the most useful for my own wedding, and that I believe are the most universally applicable. First up is how to dry your wedding bouquet.

I dried my bouquet and my husband’s boutonnière the day after the wedding, and am so glad I did. It now sits on our dresser and I am reminded of the best day of my life every time I walk by. 

 The purple is where to tie the yarn

The purple is where to tie the yarn

To dry your bouquet all you need is yarn. You wrap it around the base of the bouquet multiple times, and then tie multiple strong knots. I took a long piece of yarn, folded it in half, and wrapped both halves around the bouquet so that they made exes going up the base. I knotted after about five exes, and then repeated about 5 times, leaving a long train of yarn. I repeated this process with about 3 more strings. 

Then, you take the bouquet, which know how long strings of yarn hanging off of it, and tie the yarn around the top of my shower rod, so that the bouquet hangs upside down over the tub ledge. My bouquet was very heavy, it was made entirely of white roses, and it didn’t fall down. I left it for three weeks, so that I was sure it was entirely dried out. I then cut it down and removed the string from the base and put it in a vase with a wide brim. I used this one.  

Make sure that you dry the bouquet immediately the next day, tie strong knots, and leave the bouquet untouched for a couple weeks so that it is entirely dried out before you turn it right side up. This will ensure that it isn’t too delicate and doesn’t immediately fall apart.

Did you dry your bouquet? I’d love to hear about it!



Lilly Pulitzer Callista Dress

 Lilly Pulitzer Callista Shift Dress / SweaterSneakers / no show socks / KJP bracelet / pearl stud earringsRay Ban Sunglasses

Over the weekend we had a break from work and apartment related tasks, and got to go out on the town. I recently pulled my Lilly Callista dress out of storage for spring and summer and I love it even more than when I first wore it (in London!). It's super light weight and comfortable, and the white detailing around the neck is extremely flattering. The dress was perfect for an afternoon full of walking, since nothing about it is too fussy. It fits true to size, and isn't too tight. The zipper in the front makes the neckline adjustable, which makes the dress very versatile. For instance, I've zipped it all the way up to wear to business attire events and then loosened it a bit for an afternoon around town. This sweater is great for spring. It doesn't make a shift too casual or frumpy looking, and keeps me warm when it's chilly.

I wore my trusty Supergas with it. They are very comfortable. It takes one day to break them in, and after that they are very comfortable to walk around for miles and miles in. I also like that you can clean the sole with a magic eraser. I have the oatmeal color, and might get them in white. I think I've walked over 200 hundred miles in mine and they are still going strong. 

I also wore my folding Ray Bans sunglasses. They fold up into a little square which fits into my purse, even a small one, perfectly. Plus, you can't tell at all that they have hinges when you are wearing them.

I completed the outfit with my KJP bracelet. The pearls add a nice preppy touch to any outfit, especially when paired with these pearl earrings I snagged on Amazon for a steal. 

I haven't done an outfit post in a while, it feels good to be out and about instead of inside packing and unpacking and sorting. The weather here has been beautiful too, I'm excited to have soaked in all the sunshine. I hope you had a wonderful weekend too! 


St. Patrick's Day Weekend

Happy Friday friends! Do you have any fun weekend plans? I know it's spring break for a lot of people - if you are off I hope you get to do something fun. Over here we are going up to our alma mater for the day today and I am so happy to be here. We met here at UF and this is the first time we've been back since our wedding. It's so wonderful to walk down memory lane to where we met and fell in love. Plus, tomorrow is St. Patrick's Day! Since I'm a proud Boston Irish lass there are some fish and chips and pints in our future that I'm looking forward to. 

 WIshing we were back in france

WIshing we were back in france

Have you guys checked out the Lilly Pulitzer for Pottery Barn collaboration yet? It debuted today and I love everything. I've been on a Lilly kick again lately (...surprise surprise haha) and really love the new print Catty Shack. I think the pink and green are so fun and preppy. I've got my eye on these scallop shorts and I really love the romper, which would be a unique addition to my wardrobe. If you don't have any scallop shorts yet I highly recommend them - I wear them all the time as a comfier and more flattering alternative to jean shorts. Here are some white ones, navy ones, these are a lovely purple (and under $20), these are also under $20, and these Loft ones go on sale all the time.

My recent Lilly kick is not well times because I had been saving up room in my closet for the new Gal Meets Glam dress collection that is debuting soon. It launches at the end of April, and until then there have been bi-monthly updates with behind the scenes glimpses. I love reading about how all of Julia's ideas are coming to life. I always enjoy reading about people's passion projects, I find it really inspiring for my own projects. 

This fish and chips recipe looks delicious if you are staying in for St. Patrick's Day. Or, the Gordon's Fisherman Cod and the Trader Joe's frozen cod fillets are excellent options. As for St. Patrick's day attire, you can never go wrong with a fisherman sweater, am I right? Especially with the weather you guys are having up north. Oh March... I've always loved this L.L.Bean one, and their quality just can't be beat.

Finally, has anyone watched Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee with Jerry Seinfeld? I watched a few episodes years ago, and recently re-discovered it as the perfect right before bed show. It's funny but also soothing since it's so mellow. All of the episodes have been very good, but my favorites are Tina Fey and Larry David. What are your favorites?

Have a wonderful weekend! 


How to Style Bar Cart

We are currently decorating our new living room, and one of the pieces I am most excited about putting together is our bar cart. A well styled bar cart add a lot of character to a room and over the years I have finally figured out how to style a bar cart so that it’s a statement piece. We have started to decorate our living space before, I always find a few items I like and then get distracted and the project is indefinitely halted. Not this time! I very excited to continue decorating (which is a key difference this time around) and putting together our bart cart. Here is how I’m styling it so it stands out in the best way -


First, you need to find an inspiration picture. I think it works best if you find one that reflects your personal style, and that also reflects the ratio between beverage items and non-beverage items that you are looking for.


Now you need to put together your favorite glasses. We received these as a wedding gift, and I love leaving them out on the cart because they have such a special memory. 

bar tools

Next, collect your bar tools. We love copper accents and have a copper mixing set, along with bottle opener. Personally, I think it looks best if your bar tools all match, and at least are made up of the same metal so they look like a cohesive set.


You also want to find a tray to place these items on. It adds a lot of cohesion so the top of the bar looks arranged, and not like you’ve just placed a lot of copper items on top. Also, if your bar tools are a different color than your cart it really makes them pop. I love this marble and wood one (and it’s from Target!)


Fourth and fifth, I love the look of “live” items. Peonies in a small vase look beautiful, and a bowl of lemons (they sell fake ones) adds a pop of color. If you opt for live ones, it is nice to have them on hand as a garnish. On that note, a bowl of limes works great too.


A stack of coffee table books is a great way to add some personality. Place the lemon bowl on top. I like to collect books that say something about what we are interested in, such as a collection of photos of the Cape, an anthology of Audrey Hepburn, or a Kate Spade style book.


Another way to add personality is through a knick knack or two, such as a pineapple or other statue. I love pineapples since they also mean welcome.


Last but not least, add your favorite drinks and mixers. It doesn’t hurt if the labels aesthetically appealing. You could also add tea or coffee, or wine if that's more your style.

Do you have a bar cart? What have you done to personalize it? I’d love to hear!  


The Best Makeup Products Right Now

Best makeup right now

I love makeup and always have. Many of my childhood memories involve slathering on makeup from Fisher Price-type kits and thinking I looked fantastic (though I actually looked more like a clown). Since then my collection has increased and improved, and have gotten infinitely better at applying it. My recent obsession include light coverage foundations, bright blushes, moisturizing lip products, and thick and defined lashes. Everything has an overal glowy, golden look, with lots of pink. Above are what I think are the best makeup products right now-

best foundation

CT Wonderglow / CT Light Wonder / BareMinerals bareSkin concealer / beauty blender / Glossier Wowder / Glossier Skin Tint / Chanel Tan de Soleil 

My current favorite foundation is sunscreen, with the Charlotte Tilbury Wonderglow on top. I like to let it set, and then apply my concealer and foundation. Charlotte Tilbury call it supermodel in a bottle and it truly is. For the rest of my base, I apply bare minerals bareSkin complexion coverage serum concealer under my eyes and around my nose, and tap to blend. I next mix together Glossier Skin Tint in medium and Charlotte Tillbury Light Wonder foundation and apply it with a slightly damp beauty blender. I then set it with Glossier Wowder to get rid of shine. 

best blush

Glossier Cloud Paint / Chanel Tan de Soleil / Nars Laguna Bronzer / Dior Rosy Glow Blush

I love how easy it is to create a custom color with the Glossier Cloud Paint blushes. I mix together Puff and Beam on the back of my hand and dab it on with my finger for a bright wash of color. They layer on seamlessly, so you can keep adding more until you get the level of intensity you want. When I’m in the mood for powder products I love the Dior custom color blush and NARS Laguna bronzer. The Dior blush looks very bright, but it applies much shearer and truly adjusts to the shade of your skin. When I look in the mirror after a few minutes it has settled into a lovely rose glow - which is my favorite type of glow.

I love, love this Chanel highlighter. The Tan de Soleil is just so lovely - it adds a luminescence without any glitter, and makes me look like I have a sunkissed glow. I dab it on the top of my forehead, cheek bones, my chin and cupid’s how, as well as the bridge of my nose as the final step in my makeup routine.  

best makeup right now

Glossier Lidstar / Mascara / Anastasia Brow Gel / Anastasia Brow Filler 

The new Glossier Lid Stars are stunning. I will do a full tutorial with swatches of all of them, I’m just waiting for two more in the mail. They are shimmery without being too glittery, and have that perfect wash of color that I’ve been trying to achieve ever since makeup artists joined Instagram. I also love a good Benefit Cosmetics mascara and Anastasia brow products. Her clear brow gel sets brows like nothing else- your hairs will not move. 

best lip products

CT Pillow Talk / Fresh Sugar Petal / Glossier Generation G in Crush / Kevyn Aucoin lipgloss / Burberry Kisses / Bare Minerals in Snarky / Bobbi Brown in Rose Brown

Finally, I’ve been loving lip products that add a nice rosy-tint. My favorites are the Glossier Generation G in Crush, Fresh Sugar in Petal, and Bare Minerals gloss in snarky. All of them are super flattering, and perfect for day or night. I also love how the Burberry gloss adds a nice extra glossy pink - a subtler version of Elle Woods- and while the movie might be old, glossy lips will never be. 

What are your favorites? Anything on your wish list? I’d love to year your favorites, and your impressions of any of the above! Also, if you haven’t tried Glossier yet, you can get 20% off your first purchase with my rep link - and why doesn’t love makeup coupons?  


How To Pack Makeup So it Doesn’t Break

Whenever we travel I’m always faced with the same conundrum - do I bring my powder makeup and risk it breaking and getting everywhere, or do I leave it behind even though I really want to wear it? Well, I found the perfect way to pack powder cosmetics so that they never break. 

How to pack makeup so it doesn't break

Are you ready? All you have to do is put a cotton pad on top of the powder. The cotton pad absorbs any powder dust that would otherwise get everywhere, and cushions the makeup so it doesn’t break. Voila! No more makeup mess in your toiletry bag and you can bring all your makeup with you when you travel. Pretty much the dream (seriously, I love traveling with as much makeup as possible). 

How to pack makeup so it doesn't break

I love hearing new packing tips. What are yours? 


Giada’s Beef Stew Recipe

By far our favorite beef stew recipe is Giada’s Beef and Butternut Squash Beef Stew. It is hearty and savory, easy to make, and lasts for days. I also love how it’s easy to adjust the recipe to what’s in your pantry or what you are in the mood for. For example, we sometimes add carrots or mushrooms, and have increased the volume so it lasts a few more days. I also love that you make it in the morning and smell it cooking all day long. 


I made it on Sunday, and it was the perfect dinner for a relaxing day at home. I made it in the morning, and set my slow cooker to low so that it cooked for 8 hours. Come dinner it was ready to eat and simply delicious, especially when paired with crusty bread from the bakery. Here is the recipe, including some of the adjustment we sometimes make:

1 onion, pellet and chopped (I typically use half) 

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 tablespoon rosemary

1 tablespoon thyme

olive oil

2 pounds stew beef, cut into 2 inch cubes (I’ve used 1.5 and also 3 pounds, simply adjust the amount of broth up or down to accommodate) 

salt and pepper to taste

2 tablespoon flour

1 cup Marsala wine

1 pound butternut squash, cut into 2 inch cubes (I’ve also used frozen butternut or kabocha squash) 

1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes

3-4 cults beef broth


I’ve also added diced carrots and portobello mushrooms.  

To cook, sauté the garlic and onions in olive oil with the rosemary and thyme. Coat the stew beef in flour in a separate bowl, and brown with the garlic and onions. Add in the Marsala wine and simmer. Place in the slow cooker (unless your slow cooker browns, then it’s already in there) and add in the remaining ingredients. Cook on low for 8 hours. 

Do you have any favorite stew recipes? What about slow cooker recipes? I’d love to hear! I love trying new recipes, and am hoping to make a pot roast soon. Happy Monday!  


Happy Friday!

Once again we’ve made it to the weekends friends. I’m pretty happy about it. I’m hoping to 100% finish settling into our new apartment, including hanging pictures in the wall and making the final good will run. Do any of you have any fun plans? 

Did anyone watch the Oscars on Sunday? I, as always, loved all the dresses. I thought Allison Janey looked simply stunning (and she wore Glossier!). I also really loved Nicole Kidman’s blue dress with the bow and Lupita Nyong’o (and the whole Black Panther cast) looked so, so amazing. What were your red carpet favorites?

I’m obsessed with this seersucker dress and matching Jack Rogers. I’m so tempted to pull the trigger, especially since it is 25% off right now! Here are some of my other Vineyard Vines favorites:

I always struggle with what to bring to work for lunch, and recently have been really enjoying this opened faced avocado sandwich I saw on Carly’s blog. I also love the idea of this lunch bowl I saw on Jess's blog. Do any of you have any go to lunches?