Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Another bag

I have a problem. I am addicted to handbags. For those of you who know me well, this statement comes as no surprise.

Anyway, I am constantly searching for the perfect bag, and the one that I have at the moment is never quite right for what I NEED at the moment. As you can probably guess, this could very easily become an expensive obsession, so when I'm feeling especially broke, I turn to my trusty sewing machine to make my dream bag a reality.

My latest creation is for my upcoming trip to Chicago (woohoo! 9 days!). I have been in search of a bag that is stylish, simple, not too big, but big enough to carry around the city all day and stash whatever I may need (or may buy...), and lightweight.

This is what I came up with. It is modeled after a purse that I have that actually gets bigger when you undo, the bottom buckles to go from a hobo to a tote. I used snaps for mine.

I really should've done a tutorial, because I know I won't remember how to make it, but when I make a bag I am in the zone, so there was no stopping for pictures. Plus, the way I sew, there's a very real possibility that my instructions would have made no sense at all.

All time favorite

Every woman has one, I'm talking about your absolute all-time favorite article of clothing. For some people it might be the perfect pair of jeans, your favorite yoga pants, or even those adorable shoes, but for me it is this shirt.

I've had it for years (at least 5 I think). It was originally purchased at New York and Company, and I love that it is soft and comfy like a t-shirt, but cute enough to wear to a party. The best thing about this top is that it always fits and it always looks flattering. I think that defines the criteria for a favorite article of clothing! Plus it's that top that I can throw on in a hurry and know that it is exactly right, which is great because it is way to cold for the dress that I was planning on wearing to the BBQ tonight!

Starbucks justification of the day

I had to stop at Starbucks today because I'm getting my hair done this afternoon, and I needed to break a $10 bill so I can tip my hair stylist, so I HAD to go to Starbucks...

Monday, May 28, 2012

Another wreath

Here's what I made today! I was feeling the Memorial Day spirit and ready for a summer decoration, and this is one that I can keep up through August (it fits the fourth of July and the county fair too).

Summer jewelry

I know that the thought of putting on jewelry when it is already 90+ degrees outside isn't at the top of most people's list, myself included. The last thing that I want to do is put on something that is going to stick to me all day, and give me just one more layer.

That being said, I do have a couple of favorite summer pieces that are super lightweight, and enhance outfits without feeling like they are weighing me down.

Here are two of my favorites (Premier Designs of course) the necklace is Morocco, it is gold, which is very popular for the summer, and I love the length! Morocco is retiring this summer, so get your hands on it while it's still available! The earrings are Gold Lace, and these are my favorite because they are so lightweight that I forget I am even wearing them, plus they are stunning, so you don't need a lot to go with them because they make the statement on their own!


Aaron and I are the least spontaneous people in the world. I am a planner and list-maker and all out scheduler, and he can't make a decision to save his life, but we managed to let loose a bit this weekend.

We hopped in the jeep and drove to the lake with absolutely no purpose in mind, and managed to come across a festival to wander around for a bit .

Of course we had to do something a little predictable, so we got ice cream on the way home, because that's what we do!

Sunday, May 27, 2012


Memorial day weekend is commonly regarded as the unofficial start of summer, and it definitely feels like it today - the high is 94! So I pulled out my all-time favorite summer dresses.

This is the Victoria's Secret Beach dress. I originally bought it to take on our honeymoon, and it was a bit pricey, but has proven completely worth it. First off, it is one of their bra-top dresses, which I wouldn't recommend for everyone, but since I have next to nothing in that area it works for me, I've also found that if I remove the padding from one of my swimsuit tops and place them between the bra-top and the actual dress it helps out a little.

If you are looking for a great dress this Is your best bet, it is supima cotton and so soft, and the material is thick while still light weight, so it feels more like a dress and less like a bathing suit cover up! I love it!

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Another go at it

Here we go again with the shorts... Still a bit ambivalent, but I am in love with this red tank. The color is definitely my favorite part, it's really bright - I'll call it "ripe tomato".

The necklace works great too. This isn't one that I wear often, but sometimes it's just the right statement - silverado with the stylin' enhancer. I went simple with the earrings, cute Laura studs, and glammed the whole thing up a bit with the Monte Carlo cuff bracelet.

It'll do for a morning shopping expedition with my mom and sister.


I had three different ideas for posts today, and I forgot to take pictures of each and every one of them, I really need to re-train myself to stop in the moment and remember that!

That said, I'm going in a bit of a different direction. I thought I would share a couple of photos of my little collections with you.

I really hate that word. Collections. It takes me back to elementary school when all the girls collected pencils and stickers and bookmarks and meaningless little trinkets. So I try not to ever use it, at the same time, there are things that I collect.

The first of these is my vintage Pyrex. I'm very particular about this, it must be the teal and white Amish butter print. I honestly could not tell you when or why I fell in love with this but it speaks to me... You know... And I am sooooo not one of those people to put it on a shelf and never touch it, I have to use it, or I have no reason to have it.

My second collection is another useful item - milk glass spice jars. Again a particular brand and only with the green lids, because they match my kitchen of course. I fell in love with these when searching for spice storing for my vintage-y kitchen, which can be pretty hard. Most of the spice jars and racks available in major stores are super modern and utilitarian, so these fit the bill perfectly!

What about you, what are your collections?

Happy weekend!

Happy Memorial Day weekend from me and my giant bowl of pasta salad! Yum!

No worries, it's not all for me, we're going to a BBQ tonight. I hope you all enjoy your weekend plans!

Monday, May 21, 2012

Ugh... Shorts

I have mixed feelings about shorts, this could possibly be due to the fact that most of mine from last year don't fit, but we won't go there.

While they are not my favorite article of clothing, there are times when I will give in and wear them, especially when it hits 90+ degrees, like it is supposed to today. So here I am, in my shorts, pretending to be confident. At least I have my cute Botanical necklace on, maybe my jewelry will take people's eyes away from my legs!

An afternoon project

I am LOVING my glorious wonderful summer days off! Today was one of them, and I got so much accomplished - which doesn't always happen, hence why I am so excited about it.

After a morning of running errands, and by morning I really mean couple of hours due to the fact that I slept until 9! And my favorite day off splurge - taco bell, yumm! I settled into my little studio for some serious sewing therapy, and I finally made a new table runner for our kitchen table - I currently have a pile of green, blue, and tan table runners, all of them hand quilted by moi, but you need a change every so often right?

I showed you the pieces for this project a few days ago, an the fact that the pieces were already cut made it possible for me to finish the rest of it in one afternoon. Here are pictures of the finished project!

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Pinterest party project #2

Here is the second project that I finished last night. It is a super cute bunting that I know have hanging over the window in our living room. I love how cheerful it is, it feels like I'm getting ready for a party!

Pinterest party project #1

Ta-da! I managed to accomplish 2 projects from my pin boards at our party last night. The first is absolutely genius, reusable towels that fit on your paper towel dispenser!

They are so so so simple to make, I just bought some dollar store cotton kitchen towels and a yard of cotton fabric, cut them to size using a paper towel as a template, and sewed the cotton and towel together. I added snaps in the corners to help them stay on the roll.

I love the idea because I go through SO many paper towels, and they look so much cuter sitting on my counter!

Friday, May 18, 2012

The best way to spend a day off!

Today is my day off and I am doing what I love love love to do: baking!

Today I stuck with a tried and true favorite - monster cookies. For those of you who aren't familiar with monster cookies, they are a peanut butter oatmeal cookie with raisins, chocolate chips, and m&ms, some people opt to add nuts, I just go for the crunchy peanut butter. My favorite monster cookie recipe is from my favorite chef in the world, the lovely Ms. Paula Deen!

I hope this picture makes you drool!

Chocolate covered what?!

I've heard of a lot of things being covered in chocolate, from the fairy typical - chocolate covered pretzels or marshmallows, to the way out there - chocolate covered bacon anyone? But this one was new to me: chocolate covered potato chips.

It makes sense really, salty and sweet, a little crunchy, but I wasn't sure I could wrap my brain around it, so I had to try it out. Let me just say AMAZING! Seriously they taste like a candy bar, some chocolate, caramel, and a little crunch in the middle. Some tutorials that I looked at showed the entire chip coated in chocolate goodness, while others showed just half of the chip covered. I tried both and in my opinion covering only half of the chip is far superior - you lose some of the crunch when there is so much chocolate.

That's my little rant, I'm sure you've heard enough, so here's how you do it:
You'll need a bag of ripples potato chips (you may want to go with a name brand, I went for the cheap store brand and most of my chips were broken, which earned me some burned fingers after trying to dip broken chips in molten caramel), a bag of caramels, and 16 oz of chocolate bark (dipping chocolate).

Start by unwrapping the caramels and placing them in a small saucepan, when they are all unwrapped add 2 tablespoons of water and heat until all caramels are melted. Carefully dip half of the chip in the caramel and place on a parchment lined cookie sheet (I used a baking mat which worked perfectly) to cool.

While your caramel is hardening chop the chocolate into small pieces and melt - I prefer to melt my chocolate in the microwave, but that's just me. Cover the caramel part of the chip in chocolate (I left a little caramel showing, just to be fancy) and let the chocolate cool - and I promise not to judge you for sneaking a few while working, I know i did!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Awesomely fun

Everyone knows that I really enjoy that wonderful incredible website that is Pinterest. I wish I had thought of it! Instead I just spend a lot of time pinning a lot of different ideas, and after introducing all of the girls at work to pinterest, it was decided that we need to find time to actually make some of the things that we have pinned. This decision began our Pinterest Parties.

Every couple of months we get together to craft and we have two rules; 1. The time is used to make a project that you have on one of your pin boards, and 2. Everyone brings a snack - a recipe found on Pinterest.

Tomorrow night is our Pinterest party and I will definitely share what I accomplish, but you need to know that for my snack I am making chocolate covered potato chips. Go search for them on Pinterest!

So, what do you think?!

I fell in love with a chevron quilt pattern that I found on pinterest awhile back, and I finally had some scraps and a reason to make it!

Eventually it will be a really cute table runner in my kitchen, but for now, here are the pieces, I can't wait to show you the project that created the leftover pieces, but more on that later!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Have you heard?

Oh my goodness, have you heard of Red Stamp? It is one of my absolute favorite iPhone apps, not to mention free!

Basically, the app gives you cute cards for different occasions, that you can personalize with your own messages and photos, and then the image of the card can be saved to your phone do that you can text or email the card to anyone.

I am obsessed, I now send cards for everything, i have even done party invitations! Here are two cards that I have done recently, for my mom on mothers day, and for my wonderful husband on our anniversary:

Bargain outfit

I believe this may be my favorite dress of the summer - I see myself living in this dress, and I am so proud of the fact that I picked it up at Walmart for $10!

I did have to make some alterations, the skirt was a little too full for my liking so I took that in, and the neckline was way too low to wear without a tank top underneath, so I stitched it up a bit, of course for work I would wear the tank anyway... Obviously.

I was excited to pair the brown dress with a necklace that I don't wear very often - Sand Dune, it's a genius necklace, the piece that hangs down in clips so you can wear the necklace with or without it, or you can add a different enhancer - who thinks of these things?! Genius!

Monday, May 14, 2012

I love my job

Today I am loving my job simply because I get to wear this outfit to work! I am so comfortable - you are going to be seeing skirts on me all summer long!

Jewelry - I'm wearing Urbanite and Runway, along with Sydney earrings (adorable studs!), Crimson, devotion, Firecracker, and sensational.

Have a good Monday!

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Mmmmm Cake

Our wedding cake was made by a very talented cousin of mine, the owner of Myles Baker Street in Bowling Green Ohio. I knew when I ordered the cake that we wouldn't be saving the top tier for our anniversary, as is customary. I had a huge list of reasons for this, but the most important was; why eat frozen cake when I can just buy another cake? So, that's what I did, and I was so excited to go pick this beauty up!

Here are pictures of our wedding cake and our cute little anniversary cake (please note: the photo of the wedding cake was taken by the wonderful professionals at Serendipity Photography, the photo of the anniversary cake was taken by me - so not a professional! Excuse my bad lighting!)

Why I do what I do

I've been thinking about this blog a lot lately, and i feel like I need to explain some things, for you, and for myself.

One of the things that I have started doing is posting pictures of the outfits that I wear. I often see other people post photos of their clothes on their own blogs, some do this successfully, others are not as well done. I want to tell you why I have chosen to do this, and hopefully that will make them more useful for you.

First of all, I don't post these pictures to tell others what they should be wearing, I fully celebrate that everyone has their own style. I too have my own style, the reasons that I post these outfits are; to show people that you really can find cute clothes for cheap prices. I am not a designer label girl, would I love to wear high end fashion? Absolutely, can I afford to? Absolutely not, remember, I'm a preschool teacher :) but I still love clothes. Plus I am lucky enough to live in the kind of place where labels don't matter. You will notice that most of my clothes are from GAP outlet, target, and New York and company.

I also take photos of what I'm wearing to show all of the different ways that my favorite Premier Jewelry can be worn. It is so versatile and my favorite thing about Premier is that they encourage creativity with their products, I want to share it with everyone. Even if you do not have Premier Designs Jewelry you may still get some ideas for layering and combining your own pieces (and if you see a piece you just can't live without I can certainly help you with that!).

Whew, I have been mulling this over in my head for days, it feels so good to get it all out!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Date night

Our first anniversary is on Monday so we are celebrating tonight. We're keeping it pretty low-key (sorry no two week trip to Jamaica for us), but I am always looking forward to an excuse to get dressed up!

I went for a dress since its such a gorgeous day (I got this one at target and am absolutely in love with it) topped with a jean jacket - can you tell I am obsessed with my jean jacket, mine is a GAP outlet bargain), and cute sandals a la New York and company.

Of course I've got jewelry too, turquoise Resort necklace and awesome antiqued gold Chantilly earrings. I really dressed it up with an arm full of bracelets - Mali, Milan, and I wrapped the pearl strand from my Resort necklace around my wrist too.

Can I just say I love summer clothes!

Wedding photos

I kept telling myself that I would post these pictures eventually, it's been one year since our wedding so in honor of our first anniversary, here are the wedding photos!

All photos are by Serendipity Photography (we LOVE Gerri!), feel free to ask questions in the comments! Enjoy!