Friday, August 23, 2019

Friday Favorites: Fall Drinks, Morning Routine, Garage Sale Finds, Transitioning to Fall Nail Polish & Thoughts on LOFT Purchases

This post may contain affiliate links, meaning that any clicks/purchases may result in a small commission at no additional cost to you.

Hey all, happy Friday!  As always, it is great to see the weekend.

A few favorites from the week...

I had my first taste of fall this week!  I tried out Dunkin' Donuts Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Latte (ordered hot with no whip and skim milk), and it was delicious!  And I broke open my Hot Cinnamon Sunset tea.  I was craving it about a week ago, but told myself I needed to finish my Wild Sweet Orange tea first.  I drank my last cup on Tuesday, so then it was go time.  In other fall related news, Starbucks is set to release their Pumpkin Spice Latte on Tuesday.  I cannot wait!

I added in something new to my morning routine, and while it's only been a few days, I can see it sticking.  The last two years, a gratitude journal has been on my Christmas list.  Last year I did pretty good with it for about half the year (give or take), filling it out before bed each night, and then this year, I started slacking off wayyyy sooner.  I tried to get back on board, but that didn't last too long.  I still really loved the idea of it, but doing it before bed was just not working for me.  Often I would not be able to think of things at the end of the day from being tired and just ready for bed.  It became a chore and kind of a down spot of the day, which is the exact opposite of what it is supposed to be - something positive that lets you reflect on the good things.  Once I stopped doing it, then each time I would think to get back to it, I would tell myself I was too tired, or tomorrow would be a good day to start back up.  Well, I finally decided that now is the time to do it (honestly the whole mess of the drive to Indy kind of gave me the kick in the butt, because goodness was I grateful that we made it through in one piece!).  I thought I would give it a try in the mornings, after my devotional.  I first do my devotional, then take a few minutes to think back to the day before and write down the good / what I was thankful for.  And while I just started, I really think this is something that is going to stick and make each day a little better!  

I can never said no to a good garage sale find.  When my mom and dad text me a picture of this little rack / shelf and chair yesterday, I couldn't help but say yes.  I am thinking the hooks will be great for the guest room, or even the office area with a basket and wreath.  The chair has such neat detailing, I think cleaned up a bit it would be so cute in a corner somewhere.  And for $16 total, you can't really beat that!

Back to the fall talk, I broke out my more 'fall' nail polish this week.  Matter of Fiction has been my go to for awhile now, and while I still love that color (super light pink), I felt like it was time for something a bit more subtle and neutral.  Grabbed an oldie but goodie, At the Barre, and it's exactly what I was going for.  The color of the bottle online is a bit misleading - it looks kind of peachy to me, but it's definitely more of a tan color.  And for my toes, I opted for my go to transitional color, Eternal Optimist.  This is kind of a dusty rose color and I feel like it is one I reach for  when it starts to get close to spring and fall!

I shared some recent LOFT purchases on Wednesday's post.  I got everything in this week, and here are my thoughts.


Ruffle V-Neck Shell.  This was one of the tops I was most excited about and it did not disappoint.  Such a pretty green color and the fit is great! 

Ruffle V-Neck Shell

Floral Tile Mixed Media Henley.  After I ordered this, I kind of regretted it.  I just didn't think I would love it.  And even felt the same when I got it out of the bag.  But, as soon as I put it on I was sold.  It fits so very well, and it just look so good on!

Floral Tile Mixed Media Henley Shell

Buttoned Petal Sleeve Top.  This was the other top I was so very excited to get.  I grabbed it in cream, but it only seems to be available in mustard and red.  Such a pretty top!

Buttoned Petal Sleeve Top


Leopard Print Tie Waist Midi Skirt.  This skirt was a little out of my comfort zone, and while it was super pretty, I just don't know if I would get the wear out of it.  Also, I liked some other piece better, so back it goes.  One thing to note on the sizing - I am about 5'3" and ordered the petite, which I would recommend to anyone my height or shorter.  

Leopard Print Tie Waist Midi Skirt

Cheetah Print Short Sleeve Sweater.  This top was a big, fat no - it did me no favors whatsoever.  I honestly can't pinpoint what exactly made it so unflattering - I tried it untucked, tucked, and it just didn't look great on.  A bit of disappointment, because I thought it would be such a fun add to my wardrobe!  

Cheetah Print Short Sleeve Sweater

Still Deciding:

Swingy Open Cardigan.  The fit and look of this is really nice, but the fabric is a bit different than I had anticipated.  It's a little dressier, which would be good for work, but I don't know if it will wash well.  Still up in the air on whether or not this is a keeper!

Swingy Open Cardigan

Mixed Media Ruffle Shell.  The color of this shirt is really pretty - it actually kind of reminds me of the nail polish I mentioned above.  I just can't decide if I should keep this, or the blue and white striped.  Decisions, decisions!

Mixed Media Ruffle Shell

Striped Ruffle Henley Shell.  As I mentioned, I am trying to decide between this top and the one above.  It's super cute, but I do have two other shirts this exact same style, so I am not sure another one is necessary, even though it is blue striped.  

Striped Ruffle Henley Shell

That's all I have for today.  If you missed any posts this week and want to catch up, here are the links:

Have a great weekend!

Linking up with WhitneyErika and Andrea.

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Work Wear Wishlist: LOFT

This post may contain affiliate links, meaning that any clicks/purchases may result in a small commission at no additional cost to you.

I have been in quite a rut with my work wear lately.  I feel like I wear the same things over and over again.  It doesn't help that we have hit that transition phase where most of us are dreaming of fall, but mother nature is still in summer mode with the temps.  

Also, most of what I have been buying lately is for the home, not really appropriate for work, or not appropriate for the weather (looking at you, NSale).

LOFT is my go to place for work clothes, and I did a little browsing last week.  

Here's what has caught my eye here of late!

Ruffle V-Neck Shell.  I just think this is so pretty and feminine.  It would be perfect under a blazer or cardigan.  

Ruffle V-Neck Shell

Leopard Print Tie Waist Midi Skirt.  How darn cute is this?  I don't know how a midi length would look on me, but I could see this paired with a button down, a plain t shirt, a chambray shirt if you want to go a little more casual.  So darn cute!

Leopard Print Tie Waist Midi Skirt

Mixed Media Ruffle Shell.  While very simple, I love these types of tops paired with both dress pants, skirts, and even jeans for casual Fridays.

Mixed Media Ruffle Shell

Swingy Open Cardigan.  I bought an open cardigan from Loft last year, and loved it.  Especially love the look with dresses.

Swingy Open Cardigan

Cheetah Print Short Sleeve Sweater.  If you can't tell from above, I was feeling the animal print at LOFT.

Cheetah Print Short Sleeve Sweater

Floral Tile Mixed Media Henley.  I like this as a transition piece - it's the darker fall colors, but cool enough for now.

Floral Tile Mixed Media Henley Shell

Buttoned Petal Sleeve Top.  Another top that I think is just so pretty and feminine!

Buttoned Petal Sleeve Top

Striped Ruffle Henley Shell.  This style of top is one of my favorites, and I love the blue and white stripe.  They also have a black and white version - not sure which one I like more!

Striped Ruffle Henley Shell

Now it's time for a confession...when I started writing this post, my intent was to just window shop.  Hence the title 'wishlist'.  But, I ended up just purchasing the items.  It's hard to turn down a good sale, and I had a gift card waiting to be used, too!  I am hopeful that some of the items will work out, although I am equally hopeful that some won't to make it a little easier to decide what will go back.

They all finally just shipped yesterday, so I will report back on what works and what does!

Linking up with Lindsay.   

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Home Tour: Entry + 1/2 Bath

Hey there!  Welcome back to my home.  Last month I shared the outside, and today I am sharing a look at the entry and half bath.

My house is a condo, but it's more like a townhouse, given it has it's own entries from the outside.  When you walk in, it seems really open, with the two story entry, and a hallway on the side of the stairs.  I was beyond excited to have hardwood floors, too!

Right off the entry, there is a really nice sized front closet.  Not only does it serve as a coat closet, but it also holds my vacuum, my tools, brown paper bags I use for recycling, my workout really handles a lot!

The pictures in the hallway are ones that I had previously used in my bedroom at my apartment.  My mom took a few pictures around my hometown, and I paired them with vacation pictures.  I have a little bit of Pontiac, and a little bit of Michigan represented - two of my favorite places!  I had printed them in black and white to make the look a little more cohesive, and I love that I was able to find a place for them in my new home.

And then, there is a half bath.  When I had the downstairs painted, I had them do the bathroom, as well, but in a different color.  If you have been reading for awhile, you know I love blue, and I thought this half bath would be a great place to add in a nice, deep blue.  The accessories are minimal - I am still looking for something to go on the wall across from the toilet, but I think it makes for a cute half bath.  Perfect for when guests are over.

Can't wait to share more!

Linking up with Erika.

Monday, August 19, 2019

Weekend Recap: Indy & The 4th Birthday Celebration

Happy Monday!  The weekend once again went by wayyyyy too fast!

Friday was pretty uneventful, which was nice after a long and tiring week.  

Saturday was the exact opposite!  My nephew's 4th birthday was Saturday, so a trip to Indy was in store.  And what a trip it was.  There had been a slight chance of rain in the forecast, but nothing that seemed too bad.  However, it went from not too bad to pretty darn terrible.  I kept thinking the worst would be over, and then it would come again, 10 times worse.  Insane rain, hail, and small flying debris.  Just thinking about it has my body tensing up again!

Thank God we made it through, though, and got to my brother and sister in law's to celebrate.  The excitement on my nephew's face was just the best.  He was so excited that it was his birthday and he was turning four!  I got in some quality time with both of my nephews before the guests started arriving.  Then it was a whirlwind of little boys running from the porch to play with toys, out to the garage to jump in the bounce house.  The theme of the party was race cars, which is fitting since my nephew is beyond obsessed with IndyCar.  My mom came up with some really cute games, include 'pin the race car on the track'.  That was definitely my favorite!  We had cupcakes, then it was time for presents.  It was so fun to see all the boys huddled around as each present was opened.  You would have thought it was all of their birthdays with how excited they all got about each present!  The party just flew on by, and before we knew it, all the guest had cleared out, except for family.  And my sweet nephew was just tuckered out - he even asked my brother if it was bedtime yet - he had a good two hours to go!

The drive back on Sunday was much better than the way there, thank goodness.  I got in some grocery shopping, before I started feeling kind of off.  I didn't feel that great on Saturday, which I pretty much attributed to the terrible drive, plus just the mix of drinks and party food, but it seemed to reemerge Sunday afternoon.

That said, I am ready for a new week.  It should be relatively quiet, and I have to say I am looking forward to being back on more of a routine.

Hope you all have a great Monday!   

Linking up with Lindsay.

Friday, August 16, 2019

Friday Favorites: Dunkin' Donuts Fall Menu, Netflix & This Week's Posts

This post may contain affiliate links, meaning that any clicks/purchases may result in a small commission at no additional cost to you.

Hey all!  Hope everyone had a great week.

Today's post is going to be short and sweet.

First up, I have already made it clear that I am READY for fall.  I was googling when the Pumpkin Spice Latte was going to be available from Starbucks, and came across this press release Dunkin' Donuts instead.  Their fall menu is going to be available starting August 21st, and new this year they have a Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Latte AND Apple Cider Donuts.  I know where you will find me at some point of the day on August 21st!  Also, for fellow Pumpkin Spice Latte lovers, I read that they will be available on August 27th, but that was not confirmed by Starbucks.  Either way - it's soon!

Second, I have rediscovered how good Gilmore Girls is.  I watched Gilmore Girls while it was on TV, but it's been quite awhile, and I never was a religious watcher.  With Wednesday's link up being about binge-worthy shows and so many people mentioned Gilmore Girls, it had me finally pressing play.

And speaking of Wednesday's post, here is a quick recap of all my posts this week...

August 2019 Book Review...lots of good books, but by far my favorite was The Girl He Used To Know.

Top 10 Favorite Binge-Worthy Shows...should add Gilmore Girls and change the title to top 11!

Weekend Recap: The Highlights...I never got around to sharing my weekend on Monday.  This post has a bit of St. Louis, and a bit of my very favorite city, Chicago.

Cheers to the weekend!

Linking up with WhitneyErika and Andrea.   

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Weekend Recap: The Highlights

Last weekend was a great one.  So much so that I didn't get it together enough to share a recap on Monday.

Here are some of the highlights...

Friday was another half day for me.  It seems like August is a great month to take some Friday afternoons off!  This time, the afternoon entailed lunch outside, a stop at Ted Drewes for a concrete, and then a trip to the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis.  The Cathedral has the most amazing mosaic work, and all my years of living in this area, I had yet to go check it out.  It was absolutely stunning. 

Saturday I knocked out yard work and cleaning first thing in the morning.  I made a trip to Hobby Lobby to pick up some votives, and spent time wandering the Fall and Christmas aisles...again.  I truly cannot get enough of all the decorations!  The rest of the day was pretty relaxing, because the following two days were going to be a whirlwind.

Sunday morning I was up and at 'em for a work trip to Chicago.  The work part wasn't until Monday, but I flew in first thing to spend time with my family.  My aunt and cousin picked me up from the airport, and we headed to my grandma's to see her, and my parents.  We had the best lunch - breaded pork, 3 bean salad, pickles, green beans, rolls, potatoes...the works.  And to top that off, my aunt made brownies and we had ice cream to go with.  We spent the afternoon eating, visiting, and playing was wonderful!

Once back in the city, my cousin and I spent the evening walking around - down by the river, out to the lake, and then found this awesome little park to rest for a bit.  It was so nice to catch up and just enjoy being in the city.  We both had a little work to do, so we parted ways, and after battling with the hotel WiFi, I was able to get a few things done before calling it a night.

Monday I was up early in anticipation of the day ahead.  Aside from the work part (which was such a neat experience), being able to visit the different office buildings and see the sights from the different floors was so awesome.  Even on a day as cloudy as this past Monday!  Before I knew it, we were en route to the airport to head on home.  There were storms in Chicago, but luckily we were able to leave on time, and with little turbulence (thank goodness).

The good thing about posting this on a Thursday, is that it has me already for the upcoming weekend.  Which is now just a day away!


Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Top 10 Favorite Binge-Worthy Shows

I love TV.  I truly do.  And I love when I am able to binge watch a show.  Sometimes I let certain shows record, and build up on my DVR, that way I can watch them in a row, rather than having to wait each week.

Below are some of my very favorite 'binge-worthy' shows, in no particular order.

The Office.  My first 'binge' show.  It's just as good all these years later.

Friday Night Lights.  If you haven't watched this show, I cannot recommend it enough.  It's just so darn good.  It would be perfect for this time of year, too, with football season starting.  All there is to say is, Clear eyes, Full hearts, Can't lose.  And you really can't lose with this show!

Schitt's Creek.  This show is just so outrageous.  A ridiculously rich family was taken by their accountant, and all they have left is this little town bought as a joke, called Schitt's Creek.  It's hilarious, has some sweet moments, and is the perfect show when you need something quick (it's less than a half hour).  SO GOOD.  

Billions.  I recently made my way through this show, and really liked it.  It's just so neat, and very different from other shows out there.  If you have any interest in the financial market, this one is for you.  I highly recommend it!

Game of Thrones.  If you haven't watched this show, now is the time!  Since it is officially over, you can make your way through without having to do any waiting.  It can be a lot (death, incest, dragons - lots of stuff going on), but it's still a really good show!

Ozark.  When I went to watch this show, I don't really know what to expect.  It's pretty dark, but I was sucked in right away!  The Ozarks are in Missouri, which is where I live, so that is kind of neat, although you don't really see the Ozarks I know about.  It's all about money laundering and lots of shady characters.  Again, it's a dark show, but very good!  Really hope the new season comes out this year, rather than make us wait until 2020!

Designated Survivor.  I watched this show in real time, but it was cancelled after the second season.  Netflix picked it up for a 3rd, and I just recently watched it all.  I love shows about the presidency, and this one has lots of twists, turns, and drama.

Jack Ryan.  I am a fan of John Krasinski, and I also really like military type shows.  This was darker than I expected (I feel like that happens a lot with shows these days!), but I really enjoyed it.  I am anxiously awaiting the second season to come out!

Breaking Bad.  I am still making my way through this show, but I wanted to include it on the list.  Everyone raved about this show, so I figured it was worth a try.  It took me four episodes to really like it - for those of you that have watched it, the whole basement story was eh for me - but once that fourth episode hit, and that part was gone, I was hooked!  So curious to see how this show turns out!

Madame Secretary.  This has been one of my very favorite shows in the last few years.  It's just a darn good show.  I have watched it in real time, and there is still one more season to go, but all the previous seasons are available via streaming services. 

The list could probably go on, but those are 10 shows I feel like are definitely binge-worth.  If you have any 'must watch' shows, please share in the comments.  There are just so many options out there now, with all the different services, it's hard to know what to watch and what not to!  Even though fall TV will be starting soon, there are just times when you want a show you can watch multiple of, or something for those days when you actually get caught up with the DVR.

Linking up with ShayErika, and Lindsay.