Holiday Beauty

The holidays arrived early this year ... well, they did for beauty anyway.  A few weeks ago an enormous box of Beautycounter arrived and I literally squealed.  I am so excited to be venturing into safe beauty and skincare and most definitely during the holidays and gifting season.  When I finally opened the enormous box of happy a few days later I could not believe all the wonderful goodness inside.  Beautycounter released 19 limited edition gift sets for holiday ... and when they are sold out they are gone.  There are so many amazing pieces in each set, some of them are brand new and exclusive to holiday, and when I tell you they are so good, I am not even kidding.  Each of the darling white and red boxes has gotten me in the mood to think about the coming holidays, all the lovely events that could be happening and all the wonderful gifts I have the opportunity to give to those I adore.  💓


Wednesday With Us

Wow, Monday slid into Wednesday and I am spending the day with a bit of a to do list and dodging the crazy chilly and wet weather.  It goes from raining to not to raining again.  I think it is a sweater, legging, Tretorn day, but I think I am more than ok with that. It has been a hard two days as we lost our pup on Monday.  I can't believe this is the first time in 15 years he isn't right beside me following me everywhere I go.  Even in the last few months when I could see he was fading he refused to not follow me everywhere and I tried to sit as much as I could since I knew he was so tired.  To say he was a trooper is quite the understatement.


Serena & Lily On Sale

Do you know the feeling when someone or someplace you love is having something special and you can't believe how excited you are?  Like you are so pumped you think about it all day long??  That is how I feel about Serena & Lily at the moment.  I am dying over every single thing they post, I am loving all their new products (especially the pajamas) and I am over the moon with the sale they are having!  It is so good and I may or may not have made two separate purchases for things I have had my eye on for quite some time!


Fall Feelings

I will declare it, I think fall has officially started in the south.  Of course, the minute I say it in print it will be in the high 80s next week, but I am making the statement anyway!!  I first noticed it last night.  There was a chill in the air, it was breezy, and to be very Lorelei Gilmore ... there was a cleanness I felt.  When we got up this morning and the chill was still around I was ready to officially think about it and plan a sweater day.


Chippendale Crush

image via Parker Kennedy Living

Anyone else have a crush on all things Chinese Chippendale?  Our new chairs on the porch allow me to look out the breakfast room windows every morning and take in the beautiful pattern. I feel like Chippendale has made a huge appearance recently and I am thrilled to see it in interiors with railings and staircases, and on front porches, and decks.  It makes me desire to use a Chippendale pattern when we finally decide to rip off our deck and rebuild it with new railings.


I Swiped Right

I have a confession to make.  Rent The Runway has been around quite a while but I knew next to nothing about the program.  For me the knowledge was limited to what I saw in the Sex And The City movie when Carrie's darling assistant rents her amazing bags.  I have known so many people who have used RTR and rented amazing pieces but I just never checked into myself.  I can tell you I finally took the plunge, swiped right, and we are now in a committed and fruitful relationship. 


12 Happies du Jour

Happy Tuesday!  I hope your Monday was a good one.  Mine was a lot better than I expected ... I took my own advice from yesterday's post and it was quite lovely after all. One of our precious neighbors brought us dinner and my whole house smelled of gumbo when I returned from running errands.  Can you imagine a better homecoming?  It is one of my favorite days of the week for the blog, I gather up fun happies all week long for this day.  I have so many fun things to share with you today ... and I think you will love them as well!  👍


Monday Blues

Top || Sweater || Jeans || Sunnies (similar)

I have said it before, and I will say it again ... Mondays are not my favorite day of the week.  I think it is all mental for me, if it is going to go wrong it will go wrong on Monday.  After two days of much lazier mornings it is hard for me to hit the ground running at 6:00 am on Monday morning.  I am positive it is all in my mind and how I approach it so I have some tips that are working for me to tackle Mondays with a more positive outlook.


All The Navy

About a year ago I was looking through photos from our summer.  I stopped on one photo and was really pleased with how my skin looked and the picture just looked great, as in one of the best photos of me and it was just a selfie.  I didn't think much of it until a few months later I was reading a blog post from Mackenzie Horan and she mentioned something about navy being a good color for her coloring and her hair.  I went back to the photograph of me and every other one I had of me in navy.  That was it, I was wearing a navy gingham button down and I was also wearing navy in almost every other photo of myself I considered great ones.  Navy ... it was a good color for me and right then and there I decided I would wear a whole lot more of it.


Talbots Is Turning 70

In the world of ready to wear it is hard for companies to keep up with the fads, trends, and the test of time, but one company has skipped fads and trends and absolutely thrived over time.  Instead of adding in pieces that weren't around in a year or two or slashing their prices to keep up, they remained steady.  What started out as a single store has blossomed into thousands across the entire the country.  In the sea of boutiques Talbots stands out as as much as their bright red glossy door.


My Favorite Travel Hack

I really love to travel, and more than that, I love to pack to travel.  I get really excited and pack at least a week in advance to make sure I have everything laid out that I need and want.  I think it builds excitement for me, which just makes it so much more fun.  When I was traveling this summer I needed a new bag for my liquids on the plane.  We were not checking bags and I wanted something that would be better than a quart Ziploc and hold up better than my drug store hack I thought was working for me.  I stumbled onto the best product which I think I may have shared in on my Instastories but didn't really share with you.


My Favorite Items For Our Home Vol. 1

Today I am talking all about my favorite things in our home.  I know that sounds like a super long post, which it could be, but I am breaking it down into six categories to keep it realistic.  There are so many things I love about our home, but there are a few select repeat things that I feel we have that make it the cozy place meant for us.  The list I made was longer than just one post, so I am breaking it up into two posts.  I have one for this week and one for next.  I love these posts and I hope you will too.  


12 Happies du Jour

I am obsessed with this whole outfit above.  I have been bucking the idea of fall coming but now that we are in October I can not push the idea off any longer.  I love the top and I love the shoes so very much.  They are comfortable and, oh so sassy!  I recommend you get the whole thing ASAP.


Two Of The Best Collaborate

I am so excited for this post this morning.  I am so proud of two of my friends as they have collaborated together on such a fun project.  Both of them are incredibly talented on their own and then to have them combine their talents is just brilliant.  You will be so excited about this collaboration, I know I am truly giddy and quite possibly dying to get my hands on my own set, or two.


Fall Break to Helen

So I sort of took a week off.  I didn't mean to, but it happened.  When we left for Helen, Georgia on Sunday I packed my computer with my posts queued up but found our cabin had no reliable service to be used and then when we came home on Wednesday I was so enjoying the uninterrupted time with the kids I just took a breath and set the computer in the office for the week.  It was a good week, lots of puzzles, lots of walks, lots of reading, a little needed down time, and most of all a time to focus on the family.  We all needed it more than I knew and I am sitting on the porch this morning feeling more centered and ready for our next three months of chemo. 


Life With Cancer

After the kids head off to school and I am home once again I always grab a second cup of coffee, my favorite protein bar, and sit catching up on my favorite bloggers new posts.  It is a daily routine I covet as it gives me some down time before the crazy but also inspires me.  If you are looking for me M to F from 8 to 9 this is where you will find me.  I am usually in one of the chairs in our master bedroom or on the porch just having some down time and starting my day slowly, the best way.  💗


12 Happies du Jour

Happy, happy Tuesday!  This week is already so much better than the last two and I can't be happier about it.  It was a rough two weeks of just the craziest stuff, which was not good at all. I couldn't get in front of the stress which was the worst feeling in the world but that has passed and I am breathing so much better.  I really had to take a few days and refocus my mind and find the joy.  It was not easy, the stress sometimes just piles on, but I made it through and I am so very happy to be on this side. So very thankful for a new week with some crazy behind me.  ❤


Summer Items I Wore Time + Time Again

Since summer is my favorite season I am sad to see it go, but I always am sad to move on from the late sunsets and the quiet evenings. A few weeks into fall and I will be ready to enjoy the crisp mornings and evenings on the porch with a light blanket, but for now I am now quite ready to push the button on all things fall.  Since brown and grey are not my favorite colors I always struggle in this area and tend to stick to blue stripes and plaid to keep the color in my wardrobe and in our house.  After a number of years struggling to decorate for fall successfully I finally gave up and just embraced that it just wasn't me.  💙


Ralph Lauren Celebrates 50 Years

I have loved all things Ralph Lauren as long as I can recall.  I remember being in high school and tearing sheets from fashion magazines with classic RL looks and attaching them to a wall in my bedroom.  I made a whole wall of them.  I am sure my mother was not to pleased to notice it, but she let me keep it.  I was obsessed.  I have always been a classic prep, and my years in Catholic school with argyle knee socks and shiny penny loafers only further fed my obsession. My first boyfriend wore Polo Cologne and smelling it today reminds me of being a sophomore all over again.  My first friend after moving to Atlanta had just left a job at Ralph Lauren and we were instantly connected.  When my oldest left his crib he was gifted with an all plaid RL room, which he may still have in his new house.  I am telling you my love for all things Ralph Lauren runs DEEP.


What Is On My Heart

It is Wednesday and half of this week is already beginning.  It has been a week, actually two and I have honestly been on the edge of what felt like crumbling for a bit.  It seems like I can't catch my breath but I will not let it beat me.  Instead of giving into stress I am tackling a list of things that are bugging me about our house.  I am focused on playing my cards and not folding and I will figure it out.  I had planned a different post today and I put it back into draft so that I could share what is on my heart.  I know it seems a little much for a Wednesday (is there ever a good day??), but here we go.


12 Happies du Jour

The happiest of Tuesdays to you!!  I think I really love Tuesday since it might be the best day of the week next to Friday.  I have never been a fan of Mondays and so Tuesday just gets an automatic love due to the fact that you survived Monday and now you are moving on.  I have such great things to share with you today, I am going to get right to it.


Classic Design Channel

In the time of the "new thing" and "what's in style" I always seem to find myself gravitating to what I love.  I am not the person to jump on a trend, but prefer a style that is more me, and more timeless and something I will love year after year instead of something I will love just for a season or two. If I really like something I can dabble in it with a small accessory or a shirt or pant that is moderately priced so I will not be sad when the love has passed. I find the same to be true in the designers I love.  I am drawn more to those who produce work that I find more timeless and classic versus a trendy room with minimalist tendencies and clean lines.  Give me an antique chest any day with a blue and white lamp and more silver frames filled with photos than you can count.  Chintz + Gingham + Brass + Wallpaper .. all day long and send them all this way if you please.


Monogram Place Cards

When I was getting ready to host brunch for my friends last month I realized I didn't own any place cards.  I was sure I had at least one set somewhere in the house and after looking in every single nook and cranny I could have stashed them I had to settle on the fact that I was not in possession of any place cards.  After checking my local paper store I was sad to learn place cards are something they don't stock. How could they have 18,000 different silly napkins and not one place card pack could be find.  I ended up locating some at Michael's but honestly they were not what I was looking for and I was not happy with the way they looked on the table.  I vowed to make a purchase of some as soon as the event was over so I would not be left short next time. 


Face Oils

Top || Earrings || Jeans || Shoes 

I can recall being in college and freaking out about the idea of adding oil to my already crazy face.  I had combination skin and it didn't even break out until I was in my first year of college and I was so stressed about how to control the oil that seemed to pop up over night.  Since I started college as a newly minted 17 year old (started school early, was definitely not on a fast track 😂) I think I was just late to the game of hormones affecting my skin and I tried all I could to keep the shiny at bay and the extra oil from creating issues with my skin.


My Beloved Porch

Yes, I realize I just said I am in love with my porch, but the truth of the matter is ... I might be.  Currently our porch is my favorite space in our house as I begin my day here and most days end it here as well.  It has become a refuge for me, a place I can sit a minute and gather my thoughts, take a breath and just relax.  I really do love being on the porch, even when it has been super hot outside you will find me at some point taking a break and sitting with the fan on just taking in the birds, the cicadas, and enjoying the peace and quiet.  Most times I am on the porch the door to the kitchen is open and you can hear someone in my family commenting on me letting "all the store bought air out".  Yep, just keeping it super classy at our house. 😂


12 Happies du Jour

I hope you had a wonderful weekend!  Ours was exactly what I needed, the perfect mix of relaxation + adventure.  We started the weekend with a Braves game (plus a concert after) and finished it with a sunset on the porch + steak and this pasta recipe on Monday evening.  In the middle we went to the movies (Crazy Rich Asians was sooo good), I finished a book and started another, cleaned the porch, washed some clothes, relaxed a ton, and soaked up some fabulous hours holding the hand of the one I love most.  I call that a perfect weekend!  ❤


Labor Day Shopping

Hey, hey, hey ... happy Saturday!  I hope your weekend is fabulous so far, and the bonus part, you have an extra day to enjoy the down town with your people.  I can't tell you how happy that makes me.  I sat on my porch yesterday, with my Summer playlist on, and shopped some amazing sales to get some things for me and the kids with the amazing prices going on this weekend.  Since we live in the south I can buy shorts and things for great prices and we will be able to wear them for about two months before the chill in the air makes that not smart plan.  Plus ... I love starting next year with some cute summer stuff stashed away waiting for me. I wore the shirt above last night to the Braves game ... it is officially the last Friday of what most people consider summer.  Makes me sad to think it went so fast ... luckily we have one more lake trip planned before the chill in the air begins.

That is my focus ... summer is my favorite time of the year!! 🌞


A Special Gift From James Avery

I have shared many times how much I love James Avery and their incredible jewelry.  I have enjoyed my charm bracelet for over 20 years, and I gifted one to my girl earlier this year and she loves her as much as I love mine.  It is so fun to add charms to our bracelets like these we added after our amazing Haiti trip this summer.  I look forward to many more additions as the special events unfold in our lives. 


Hand Painted Clutches by Laura Dro

Art + accessories, doesn't that sound perfect?  I am so excited today to share a new endeavor by the talented Laura Dro.  I met Laura a few years ago when she emailed to introduce herself to me and share her art.  I loved every single thing she paints and she generously gifted me a pineapple which currently hangs in our den.  Every single time I see it I remember her talent and her kind spirit.  When I spotted a new project she was working on I knew immediately I wanted to learn more. 


Labor Day Must Haves

Tunic (similar) || Earrings || Shoes || Jeans || Sunnies (vintage) || Scarf (similar)

Is it really almost Labor Day?  I can recall heading out on the Thursday before Memorial Day ready to soak up the summer with every single fiber of my being.  It has been an amazing one, full of adventure, personal trips, business trips, beach time, lake time, and most of all precious family time. We are still thinking about our weekend plans and trying to decide what we want to do, but I know we will be soaking up the time and every single moment of the long weekend.  I am all up for loading up the car, (can I borrow yours AG?), heading out for the day or the weekend on an adventure.  Doesn't this convertible look like the perfect weekend car?  #yesplease


12 Happies du Jour

Happy Tuesday!  We had a great weekend soaking up family and having some down time in the middle of it all.  Saturday my brother + sister in law arrived with their girls and treated us to a home cooked meal right up Lawyer's alley.  Typically on the weekends he rests a lot more so we just hung around, had lots of porch time and watched the kids made endless bowls of slime and play so many board games.  We were on a no phone policy for the kids on Saturday and they played so much, I may need to make it a regular thing.


Introducing Kevin Francis Design

I say it quite a bit, but today's youth is driven and passionate about so many things.  They know what they want in live and many of them start their careers while still in high school.  I have met countless high school students who have started blogs, started businesses and even one darling girl who started a jewelry business while she was just nine.  I am always blown away but how dedicated and driven these individuals are, and I find them so incredibly inspiring.  One of my favorites in this category is my friend Kevin O'Gara.  I met Kevin at an ADAC opening four years ago.  He introduced himself and we chatted and then he headed back to school, as a junior in high school.  I immediately knew I needed to know more about him.


The Best Florida Porch

Happy Saturday ... I hope your week was amazing.  Mine was good, and yet chaotic, but I am thankful for the weekend with family and some down time.  Lawyer's brother, wife and girls are coming for the night so I will be completely unplugging for a while to soak up the time.  To top it off we are celebrating our 23rd anniversary on Sunday and, even though it will be super low key, it will be perfect. ❤


Federal Mirrors 101

I have always loved our Federal Mirror.   I love the family history, the stunning eagle at the top and the beautiful round size.  We inherited the mirror from my husband's family and, although I love it, I had no idea of the history of these mirrors.  Fast forward to July when I visited Winter Park and my friend Maria and she shared all of the knowledge she had about federal mirrors.  I knew instantly I had to come home and do some research and learn all the details.


Introducing Countercontrol

You know how much I believe in Beautycounter, I truly can not get enough of every single product they sell. I have completely immersed myself in the skin care, the makeup, and the sunscreen.  I am in the process of checking out both this incredible antiaging serum + this eye rescue cream and I will report back after I have used them for a while.  I hear so many amazing things about both products so I anticipate loving them, but I do want to test them out for myself before sharing results.


Mixing Prints 2.0

Two summers ago I was invited to speak at an event with my friend Emily McCarthy on Pattern Play ... Mixing It Up and would love to share this topic with you again. Colors and patterns make me so very happy and I love to mix them and wear them in different ways.  As of late I have been on a blue + white stripe kick and it is so fun to me to see some of my favorite pattern photos.  Clearly I need to find my game again, starting with some of my favorite patterned shorts I need to wear before the weather gets chilly again. I have the video of the event for you along with some tips on styling a coffee table and your bookcases.  At the end of the video I chat about styling clothes and mixing patterns + prints.


12 Happies du Jour

I am still relaxed after a great weekend of doing almost nothing at all.  I have been on the go lately and after having a crazy week last week I just really needed to relax.  Saturday we laid low and only left the house to hit The Varsity drive thru for their 90th anniversary.  We did wait 2.5 hours for our turn in line but I knew it would be crazy and we decided to make it an adventure.  It was so fun to be able to thank the wonderful workers for their incredible dedication and hard work.  When we arrived the lines were crazy and I never saw one person complain or greet anyone with anything other than a smile and their usual ... "what'll ya have". 


eBay ... My Tips + Tricks

I have been an eBay shopper and seller for many years.  I started using eBay when the kids were little. I can recall stalking listings when our youngest was just a baby hoping to get her what I deemed the perfect smocked dress for holidays.  It was the best source for buying and selling kids clothes. I would list the items they no longer needed and scoop up darling Ralph Lauren and Vineyard Vines pieces for the boys and smocked dresses for my girl.  I was one savvy shopper.


Madeline & Company - The Brand New Bags

It's that time again, back to school and, per usual, I am fighting the fuzz to get back into the routine.  I love summer so much, not just the season, but also the unending time with my children and the free schedule.  Who doesn't love an easy morning followed by a day at the pool and then long evenings siting on the porch?  Does it get any better?  The one thing I do love about the kids going back to school is the back to school shopping.  I am such a nerd for a back to school outfit with brand new shiny shoes and a backpack filled with supplies. I love a new set of pens, new sharpened pencils and, most of all, new binders ready to be filled with all they learn.  They had so many items on their lists this year but the one thing we didn't need to hunt for, a new backpack for the youngest.  Once again we got our backpack for the rising eighth grader (say it isn't so) from my favorite backpack girl and I am not sure who is more excited, me or my girl.

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