5 Casual Summer Sandals This Season

I’m a sucker for shoes, who’s with me?
I’m a strong believer that a shoe can make or break an outfit. The shoe doesn’t even need to be a wow factor for this to happen- it just has to be the right shoe. For as much as I believe this for years I only wore some version of a flip flop in the summer in all the colors. I eventually graduated from a rainbow of plastic to a rainbow of leather but it wasn’t until a few years ago I started to embrace the various forms of the summer sandal. And now, I can’t stop! Of course I always have my favorite leather flip flops in nude and black but now I’ve branched out to different styles and trends.

To kick off my list of five casual sandals for your closet this season is this gladiator pair from last year. I’ve seen this pair in store which looks like an updated version. While browsing last week at online, I saw my exact pair that I bought last season! I’m glad I can link it up for you guys. Although I am totally loving the backless version too- a Mom at open swim had them on in silver and they were super cute! These are a heavy rotation for my shorts, maxi skirts and maxi dresses.

I’m also really loving the BCBGeneration fringe strappy sandal I picked up at the Cincinnati Premium Outlets a few months ago. The store was closing and having a MAJOR sale- I snagged these for $8. Can you believe it?! I can’t find them online (I’ve looked, even eBay!), but these and these are some cute similar styles. I’ve worn these black babes more than I thought I would. I wore them today with a cute short romper from Banana Republic and then earlier in the week to work with a maxi dress.

Hands down my favorite casual sandal this season are the cognac huarache sandals. I reach for this strappy sandal all the time. I love it with embroidered tops, a white tee or a cute maxi! They are pretty comfy and true to size. I usually size a half size up on flats, and on these- I wish I would have stuck to my normal shoe size because they stretched a little.

 

My favorite casual shoe for work are these slides in nude. I feel like I’m getting away with something amazing when I wear them. They are effortless to put on and the patent dresses them up a notch. Perfect for the office with pants, skirts, dresses and jeans! I also wore them on Memorial Day with shorts and this one shoulder ruffle top. Super cute!

A new recent casual sandal that I’m loving are these lace up wedges. I bought them to wear with cut off shorts, tank and blazer for dinner out with the bestie- and I’ve worn them so much more! They are super cute with jeans and shorts. Bonus, they are pretty comfortable for having a zipped heel!

 

 

Fashion Finds: The Round Summer Bag


Hi babes! How has everyone’s week been? Little miss has been sick (welcome to daycare!) so we’ve been pretty chill keeping her comfy. I finally bought an oil diffuser so I could get eucalyptus in the air to help with her congestion. And now, I’m obsessed! I’ve also been diffusing lavender at night and I don’t know I can sleep without it now. If you oil diffuse, I’d love to hear some oil combination suggestions!

Last night I was thinking about this blog. I’m still trying to figure out the best way to share my outfit details… If it’s better to list just a link, where I bought it from plus link, or list how much I paid or what. One thought that kept coming back to me was how I created this space as a place to empower the everyday female. Don’t get me wrong, if you can drop $80 on trendy summer sandals then get it girl. But if you’re like me, maybe you see that $80 price tag and think “man, I can get almost a whole outfit for that price”. This thought has brought me to what I hope to be a blog series called “Fashion Finds” where I’ll share some tips on how to get that look you love for less.

 

To kick the series off, I’m going to talk about this bag that I obsessed about for about a month. A few fashion/style bloggers I follow on Instagram have this bag. I love that it’s a circle with leather handles- it screams summer to me! However, being a Mom of two young kids I didn’t think spending over $200 on a light colored woven bag would be a smart financial move. To the internet I went searching for a similar style bag. This draw string straw bag is cute and so is this clutch but I really wanted a round bag. Just when I was about to give up I stumbled upon French Baskets.

French Baskets makes and sells straw bags & baskets. They are hand made by women in Morocco- like hand weaved, hand sewn leather handles, and hand adorned sequins and embroidery. Also did I mention their products are made out of eco-friendly materials? With over 10 years in the business, the owners (Geraldine & Karine) know how to make a quality product. The best part? The products are totally affordable! Like I’m talking well under $100 a basket/bag.

 

I opted for the Round Wicker Basket with Double Leather Handle; with shipping to the United States my cost was less than $60. It took a little over a week for the bag to arrive at my house and I may or may not have jumped up and down when the DHL delivery man pulled up.

 

While this bag is not practical for a long day out with an infant and preschooler; I’ve had no issues stuffing a few baby necessity items and snacks for big brother for dinner out or a quick errand. I’m very impressed with the durability and structure. The leather handles and straps are so soft! I will say it had a very earthy smell after being unboxed. It is real leather and palm leaves after all! Smell has since dissipated in case you are wondering.

If you’re loving the summer straw bags, or even want a cute well-made basket to store some throw blankets or toys, I highly recommend French Baskets. They have items for purchase on their website as well as their Etsy shop; they even do wholesale! I love my purchase and totally think you will too!


Outfit details: Bag. Jeans. Sweater (Loft, last season- similar, similar). Sandals (Target last season- similar). Sunnies (gift- similar). Earrings (those are sold out, but these are cute too!) 

*This post is not sponsored or endorsed. Just my authentic opinion & review on a really awesome product! 

Killer Lunch Quickie

Hi guys! Gosh, it’s been over a week since I last posted. Yikes! And a week it has been. I’m much looking forward to a glass of wine (or three) this evening! 

Little Miss started in the infant room at her school this week and I’m back to working full time. I was that hot mess Mom with a stream of tears down my face on our first drop off. This week has been an adjustment; emotionally & physically. I’m still trying to juggle to fit everything that I want into my day/week. (Like blogging, laundry!)

Since my little lady is still waking up in the middle of the night it’s nearly impossible for me to get up with enough time before work to exercise. Right now, exercise after work isn’t happening- I’m too excited to get home to my babies and soak up some of the summer evening before its baths and bedtime. This week I’ve used my lunch breaks to get in some exercise. Which honestly is okay; it’s better to use my time wisely even if that means I’m not getting the intense sweat session I’m used to. And in my book, any type of workout for any amount of time is better than no workout. 

I’ve done a lot of walking on the bike path this week but yesterday I popped home for a quick and effective superset workout. I blasted through this workout during three Kendrick Lamar songs- it left me out of breath and sore! 

In other news I also really want to share this outfit I wore last week on my last day of leave. The day was filled with all the things I dream stay at home mom’s do- get the family off to work/school, exercise, play with the baby, hit a doctor’s appointment, grab some Starbucks and run some errands, prep dinner, play with baby some more- and end it with a big glass of Cabernet after the kids are in bed! 

 

I’m most excited that I finally fit into these Athleta leggings that I purchased in January. The bestie was right, these are the most amazing leggings ev-er! I especially love that they have back pockets- makes me feel like I’m not wearing leggings! They are the perfect companion for shopping with kids! Cute & comfy! 


I paired it with a white tee (knotted myself), denim jacket and white sneakers. I definitely see this outfit coming into repeat for weekend errand runs.

I hope you guys had a great week and a great weekend!


Shop this look:

Jacket. Tee. Diaper bag (newer version). Leggings. Tennis (similar; similar). Sunnies (similar). 

My #NSALE Under $50 Picks

Nordstrom Half Yearly  Sale started yesterday and I mean really who doesn’t love a good sale? Especially if you’re like me who aims to purchase an entire outfit for under $100 or less! Fashion is ever changing which means sometimes if you just hold off long enough a favorite item will be marked down. Combine that with free shipping and it’s like Christmas morning, am I right?

I really love this one shoulder ruffle top– I think it would be great for a little happy hour fun. It comes in so many cute colors but I’d probably stick to black. This lace tank would be great for date night.  The asymmetrical neckline on this top is so interesting- it might be a cute work option. This bell sleeve top is also a great work option! I love that it’s cotton but also has a major wow factor! Scroll through to see my clothing picks (all items are clickable!)

I’ve also rounded up some great shoe, accessory and bag finds under $50. First, let’s talk about this fabulous faux leather drawstring bag. Such a posh way to carry around all the mom things that end up in my purse. This crescent necklace is perfect for every day. And I think these chambray block heeled sandals are absolutely the cutest. I keep asking myself if I have enough to wear to make that purchase! Hit the arrow to see all my under $50 picks!

Have you browsed at the sale yet? What are some of your favorites? Right now this bracelet, skirt, sweatshirt, and dress are in my shopping cart. If you see something you love, act quickly because items are selling out fast. I’ve already missed out on a few cute tops that were under $15!

You can view all my #NSALE picks here:

Shop My Current Faves:

3 Reasons Why I Date My Husband

Blouse // Jeans // Flats // Bag // Watch // Bracelet // Sunnies (similar)

My go to marriage advice to give for bridal shower/wedding games  is “continue to date one another”. Sure there are other marriage advice that I think are important but for me this one is crucial- and even more so now that we have kids.

Work, career, laundry, cooking, cleaning house, paying bills, running errands- there’s a lot that happens to be a functioning adult. Then you have kids which adds another level to all the noise that is life. This can leave us feeling exhausted! It’s good  to break away from the every day routine with Adam for a little bit. As of lately, these three things are a result of a little date with my man:

  1. Reconnect. Escaping with Adam for a few hours is always an opportunity for us to reconnect. It’s a time that we can put away our phones and really enjoy each other’s company without reminding a preschooler his manners or attending to a baby.
  2. Remember. I don’t mean a walk down memory lane (while those can be fun!) A date can be a friendly reminder that we are more than Mom & Dad- that we are Jen & Adam and this is why we fell so crazy for each other, got married and started this family.
  3. Rejuvenate. I’m sure most parents will agree that escaping from your children for just a little bit will bring freshness when you reunite. Having a lunch date always leaves me feeling relaxed and clear minded that I feel it makes me a better Mom.

About a week ago, Adam and I had a great day date!   We drove around downtown rekindling our love for Dayton. We kicked it off with mimosas and brunch at Basil’s. It was a little chilly but I love this view. I can’t wait to go back when we can sit outside.

Then we headed to the Oregon District for a little shopping at Luna’s Gifts & Botanicals. If you are in the area, you definitely need to check out this unique gift shop. They have the most adorable air plants!   Next we popped into Toxic Brew Company for their mimosa special. Do you see the size of this thing? They do not mess around with Sunday Funday!

We ended it with a stop to get plants and planters for the yard and to pick up supplies for dinner. I have to laugh because it seems common that our dates end with a quick stop at the grocery.

It was a great afternoon- full of laughs, fun & love! Oh and I got to wear this blouse I bought when I was pregnant that I was saving for post-pregnancy. Another win in my book! Plus Adam was so sweet to snap photos for me! This pretty camel color is no longer available in my exact blouse but can be found in a similar long sleeve version and this similar short sleeve top. I’m still obsessing over these lace up ballet flats as well as my new white jeans! Once I’m back to my pre-baby weight I swear I’m splurging on an awesome pair of white distressed jeans like these or these!

 

 

 

 

My Poshmark Closet is Live!

I’ve been wanting to try out selling my gently used clothes on Poshmark for awhile. Last weekend at a party I got to chatting with a girl who sells regularly on Poshmark about her experience. After we talked, I couldn’t wait to go through my closet for some listings!

I do not hoard much of anything in life besides wardrobe and crafting supplies. For a few years I’ve been saying I’m going to majorly purge my closet- and this might just be the start of it!

I think it will be a great way to resale some of the items I only wear once, like dresses for formal events and weddings.

I have about a dozen items listed currently ranging from purses to blazers. Everything is priced  $20 or less!

If you are on Poshmark make sure you like my closet. If you’re not- you can always view my most recent listings in the widget on the right side of my layout or by clicking “Shop” on the blog menu, then “Shop my Closet“.

Small Victories

Happy Monday! I hope everyone had a nice weekend.  We had gorgeous weather and I spent celebrating with friends and family all weekend long- it flew by!

I’m pretty excited about these striped pants. They are from last year but guys, they fit again! Yeah for small victories. In fact, I wore these last Mother’s Day and just a few weeks later I found out I was pregnant with little miss. I still have some more weight and inches to lose but it feels great to wear something in my regular size! Those tough workouts  from the Spring into Summer Shape Up are working!

Also, I can’t stop wearing these flats. I might have worn them 4 days last week. And I’m a little obsessed with my earrings– I picked them up two weeks ago at Target and never knew how much I was missing tassel hoop earrings in my life. They are under $6, so you need them too!

Even though these pants are last season you can find this year’s version in a fun floral and bright hues like this yellow. Or snag this pair that looks pretty similar.  I picked my top up at the LOFT outlet last month but this pretty bell sleeve sweater or this pocket tee would both look great!

 

Spring Shoulder Round Up

2017 the year the shoulders show off! Off the shoulder, cold shoulder & one shoulder styles are all over the spring looks. No matter what your budget, you can grab a top or two this season and I’ve rounded up some favorites under $55 for you!

This relaxed one-shoulder top seems like something I could get a lot of wear with its casual fabric.  Old Navy, $19,94- curently on sale for $15.

I’m drawn to how dramatic this poplin OTS top with the big bold sleeves. This would be so cute with skinnies and heels!  Jennifer Lopez for Kohl’s, $48- currently on sale for $27.99.

This crepe cold shoulder top would be great for work! The asymetrical ruffle is so fun and the material can be dressed up or down. It’s on mega sale with limited quantities. Topshop for Nordstrom, $55- currently on sale for $29.99.

This chambray one shoulder!!! It’s so simple but yet the favorite of all the ones I’ve looked at. It says “I’m here to party but I keep it classy”. Gah, love it! Loft, $54.50.

Ok, and this is my second favorite! I sorta wish it came in a different color but I’m not totally hating this bright hue. How fun are those shoulders? It’s a ruffle cold shoulder dream. Éclair for Target, $36.99.

Dress shirt gone wild! Seriously though, see that cute cuff sleeve? And the big one sholder ruffle! Loft, $54.50

At lunch today I saw a gal with the cutest cold shoulder hooded top on- I wanted to ask where she found it. I found a few cold shoulder sweatshirts that look just as fun like this grey number. This would be so cute for running errands or lounging around the house. Alison Andrews at TJ Maxx, $16.99

This one-shoulder peplum top appears to be a little dressy making it great for a special occassion or date night! NY&Company, $44.95- currently on sale for $31.46

The last one I’m sharing is another cute top with dramatic sleeves. It’s also pinstripped- which who doesn’t love a good pinstripe? I’d pair this top with denim for brunching with the ladies! Forever 21, $17.90. 

Now the only question is- which one or two to buy.. all 9 wouldn’t be obnoxious right?

Relaxed One-Shoulder Top for Women • Old Navy • $15
Women’s Jennifer Lopez Poplin Off-the-Shoulder Top • JLO by Jennifer Lopez • $27.99
Women’s Topshop Izzy Cold Shoulder Top • Topshop • $29.99
Chambray One Shoulder Top • LOFT • $54.50
Eclair Women’s Ruffle Sleeve Top Coral- Éclair • $36.99
One Shoulder Blouse • LOFT • $54.50
Long Sleeve Cold Shoulder Sweatshirt • $16.99
7th Avenue – One-Shoulder Peplum Top • New York & Co. • $31.46
FOREVER 21+ Pinstriped Off-the-Shoulder Top • Forever 21 • $17.90

 

 

 

The Comfiest Peplum Top

I’m a huge fan of everything black, white and grey and when I saw this black and white relaxed peplum-hem long sleeve tee at Old Navy I was quick to snatch it up. I was a tad nervous how it would fit because I ordered a size up but it’s seriously one of my favorite go-to shirts right now. I’ve paired with jeans and cute wedges in this outfit post but last week I wore some classic Converse for casual Friday. Perfect! I also have the sleeveless version which I equally love! Both styles are under $10 plus 35% off today online! There are only a few of the long sleeve left in stock- grab them while you can!


Top $7

Jeans $60

Necklace- gift (similiar

Shoes $30

Blush Denim

I can barely contain my happy in these photos. I’d like to say it’s because I’ve found a great pair of blush denim skinnies. I mean seriously these are amazing for my post-baby bod. They are silky, they pull on, they give squish support and iron so easy. A busy Mom dream for color denim right here! They come in red, black and olive too! I’m also loving how this breezy spring white sweater and of course, dem mules paired for a professional look last week.

The real reason for all the happy is all that fresh wood I’m standing on. When we built our house we found out way too late that we were getting this teeny tiny deck due to the grade of our lot. We decided to upgrade this spring and the builders just finished. I still have furniture and lighting to purchase plus figuring out stain colors. I am so thrilled to have a place to sit out back and a hard surface for the kids to play. We have this great little nook that’s going to make the best little play fort!


Sweater.  Jeans.  Necklace (similiar, similiar).  Mules.