Friday, October 31, 2014

Five on Friday...Boo to You!

Another weekly installment of my favorite time to ramble on about anything and everything...cheers to another Fun Five on Friday party!
ONE. Piko Shirts for the Low
If you're like me and LOVE Piko (AKA the sofest/stretchiest/best staple ever) shirts, look no farther than a new best friend/website I found for purchasing these tried and true basics that are so comfortable you'll want to sleep in them...and yes, I might have done that before, so no judgment please. Look HERE to stock up on your favorite colors and various styles and for only $20, you can get all the colors you need to fill up the closet. My favorite is the Long Sleeve Top and I already have them in grey, black, red, and dark grey. (FYI, for sizing, I wear a small)
TWO. Ikea Love...But Local
I wanted to purchase this lovely Ikea table for a local shopping event I have coming up for Sugar Bit (details on that next week), but of course I couldn't order it online, nor would the closest store (Atlanta) hold it for me long enough to drive down there and get it. That's when I looked to ModerNash, which is a local business who drives to Ikea each week, makes custom orders for people, and then brings them back. Then, they call you to let you know it's in their warehouse, you pick it up, and then you can go about your merry way. Genius, right?? They do charge a minimal markup, but to save me the hassle of driving to ATL and making my way through the overwhelmingly huge Ikea store, that fee was well worth it. Big win in my book AND they have popular items already in stock. No, I was not paid to say this...this is my honest opinion from a very happy customer.
THREE. Favorite New Fall Appetizer
You only use a total of 4 ingredients, so this is something ANYONE can make. Even better, the ingredients come already packaged, so hello EASY PEASY! I'm  making these tonight and tomorrow so I hope friends and family love them as much as I do...Sausage Crescent Bites. YUMMY!
FOUR. Workouts...Or Lack Thereof
I've told you before I get lazy when fall rolls around...lazy in the working out department, but not so lazy when it comes to eating and baking. That's why I have started this Everyday Wake-up Workout. This is something I can tackle as soon as my feet hit the ground and before two little munchkins start screaming for some attention. Even better, I don't need any weights/mats/machinery to get this knocked off my to-do list. It may not be much, but anything is better than nothing!
FIVE. Wallpaper Love
I think I'm becoming addicted to wallpaper...and it makes me laugh thinking about all that heinous wallpaper I saw everywhere growing up and saying "I will never have wallpaper"...adulthood strikes again my dears! I already have it in our powder room downstairs and a few have already been pinned for future reference because I can't get enough. And P.S. if you don't like it, that's fine, too.
(hoping this will make its way into CC's big girl room design)
That completed this week's Five on Friday tour from me. Be sure to stop by April, Christina, and Darci's spaces to pay them a little visit, too and linkup below so we can see all your frightful, festive goodies! Happy Halloween to ALL of you friends out there...hope the ghouls and goblins let you enjoy some of their candy ;)

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Fun at the Pumpkin Patch: Featuring the JJ Cole BundleMe

This past Saturday, Jeff, Mimi, Pappy, and I got together bright and early Saturday and took the girls to the infamous Gentry Farms Pumpkin Patch for a fun fall, weekend adventure. We were lucky enough to beat the crowds and arrive right as they opened so we could make sure to do everything before it got too crowded.
It was a bit chilly that morning, so our new JJ Cole Urban Bundleme Cover was perfect to keep Carson all bundled up and toasty. Honestly, I was nervous about how Carson would do with a "bundler", but she absolutely loved it and it made it so nice to not have to worry about her constantly throwing out her stroller blanket (like her big sister did). This is going to be something we definitely use more in the fall/winter months, especially when we're out and about at local festivals and on evening walks around the neighborhood, so I will be purchasing a second one for Caroline. I love the versatility, the ease of use (though it takes a few times to master the on/off function to get it out of the stroller), and that I can throw it in the washer when it gets dirty.
(FYI: I chose the Urban Bundleme in the Toddler Size in Black... in addition you can purchase these at Buy Buy Baby and Babies R Us)
Once we got to Gentry Farms, we made our way into the fun and started off checking out the pumpkins! Then it was off to the miniature (AKA children friendly) corn maze...and yes, we even managed to get lost inside, too. Go team!
 family picture...are all in one together!!
 on a corn maze adventure!!! 
From there, we toured the grounds, went to visit the "zoo" of animals, rose the teeny tiny tractors, and played in the corn and wheat many fun things for kids (and adults) to do!
 time to do a little reverse action there peanut
 fairly certain Jeff and I loved playing more than the girls
Afterwards, we went on the nature trail to scope out more of the farm and then took a tractor/hayride around the was the perfect fall day!
After the hayride, we decided it was time for some snacks so we took a break and rested up...complete with popcorn , rice krispie treats, cookies, and banana bread...such good treats!
 future cornhole stars
All in all, it was a great morning to get outside and enjoy the TN fall weather and spend time together as a many more fun things to look forward to during these next two months and I cannot wait. P.S. if you're local, this place is a MUST! 

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Phase 2: The Shopping Trip

Shopping...such a hard day's work! I can't lie, as of late, I am usually shopping for the girls, shopping for the store, or grocery's rare that I go out alone and have 3+ hours to spend browsing items/stores/departments for no one but me. And yes, it was a dream come true.
When we left off last time, I had completed  Phase 1: The Closet Clean-Out. Afterwards, Amy and set a date to get together to let the shopping commence and that's where Phase 2 begins.
I was really looking forward to the experience, and she didn't disappoint. A few days before my session, I was sent an email from the Tina Adams team telling me the date/time of my appointment, items to bring/wear (comfy clothes easy to take on/off, as well as a nude camisole) and then came the fun! Amy had let me know the plan was to meet at Nordstrom and I arrived so we could get going.
Instantly, she greeted me with a shopper's survival kit, complete with mints, water, protein bars, and other necessities that would help make it a great day, as well as a sweet handwritten note...these little details really stand out to me and it's just an added touch that makes this all the more enjoyable.

When working with the ladies at Tina Adams, they make it a truly memorable and personal experience, and we had a private dressing room so we could take our time, I could "model" everything (and I use the term model loosely I assure you), and then Susan (one of the amazing Nashville Nordstrom gurus) helped pull additional accessories for me to check out. Amy had visited a few days prior to our shopping adventure to "pre-shop" for help narrow down options, pull in necessities that were on my must-have list, and to help make the most of our day together.
a classic navy dress with elbow patches and cognac riding boots
fun date night look...and a great price point on this adorable dress by Lush
All in all, we stayed in Nordstrom around 2 hours, pulling different items together, playing dress up with some GORGEOUS gowns, and then deciding on what looked the best/fit my budget/would work well for my lifestyle. We also ventured into Elaine Turner, one of their favorite stores for accessories and shoes, where I might have added a few things to my Christmas list, because I'm now a new fan. Even better, Elaine Turner is an exclusive partner of the Tina Adams Consulting team, so they offer 20% off to Tina's clients...makes it really nice when you're looking at a pair of shoes for $100 and you can walk out with them and only have to pay $80.
Overall, the shopping trip was a BIG win in my book...I walked away with some great pieces that were all on my list, and I found some ways to incorporate some different looks/items into my wardrobe. Here some lessons I took away from my big day out:
1. Their motto is to shop high/low. Pair higher priced, classic, staple garments with more trendy tops/accessories at a lower price point, hence saving money and getting more mileage out of the costly pieces. For instance, they help you find a leather jacket that can be worn 3 out of the 4 seasons in a year, serving multiple purposes for different times of the year. Genius, right?
2. Fewer but better is how they work. It's not about having 25 different black tops and limitless bottoms and dresses, but items you can do a lot with.
3. Buy only what you love...this is so my weak spot. I buy things just because I like them, not because I need them. I have started putting things on hold and if I truly love them, I'll make a point to go back. I aim to avoid these mistakes in the future because I can think of a number of purchases where I bought something, but didn't really love it.
4. Amy's goal is to get her clients to shop smarter, and to save them time and money. The shopping trip is a time to get new pieces to fill in the gaps of your wardrobe, but also a learning experience to educate clients to be able to navigate the big box stores and know what works best for each person's distinct body type, personality, and life.
5. Using a stylist really does help take the stress out of shopping and getting dressed everyday, too. They teach you things you wouldn't necessarily know, and Tina Adams' team doesn't work on commission so it's not like you're being followed around and being stalked by a salesperson (I know you know what I'm talking about). It is an investment, but a great one to help in the long run. In addition, they have long-term relationships with countless stores, so they are able to pass on a 20% discount to their clients at select retailers.
6. Even after our shipping trip concluded, Amy was out and about, shopping for some of the other essentials we weren't able to find that day, and she sent me emails with those links/ideas/pictures/suggestions. I love that just because the adventure is over, that doesn't mean she isn't still looking for me.
Here are some of my new items I added to my closet:
My favorite purchase from my day out because I normally wouldn't 

splurge on a nicer pair of jeans
I also added some new nude heels, black ankle pants, a black suede bootie, and a cognac color jacket, and some of these essentials were pieces I picked up solo from my shopping list.

For the final step, Amy will come over for our one-on-one styling session, where she will show me how to pair things, switch up looks, and put it all together. She will focus on incorporating all the new pieces with my existing wardrobe to create all new looks. In addition, she takes photos of every outfit and will then compile that into my very own virtual style book...SO excited! 
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