Looking Forward To Fall

1“Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald

If you live in Nashville, or anywhere in the South I suppose, it still feels like June when you walk outside. Boo. HOWEVER, the weather man promises this weekend will really feel like Fall. We’re talking a high of 72 and a low of 58. !!! Bring on the longer sleeves and perfectly chilled air. With the autumn temperatures comes a whole realm of possibilities…

Here are a few things I’m looking forward to this season:

  • Pumpkin spice everything
  • Saturdays spent watching (SEC) football with the fiance
  • Black tights and boots
  • Cozying up with a blanket and a good movie
  • Chili and plenty of jalapeno cornbread
  • Long walks outside sans humidity
  • A trip to the pumpkin patch
  • Over-sized cardigans
  • Decorating for Halloween – bring on the ghouls and goblins!
  • Picking out the perfect mums which yes, I will undoubtedly kill
  • Watching the leaves change colors

What are you most looking forward to?

XOXO,

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Links I’m Loving

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1. My grandmother and I would watch Gone With The Wind over and over – thanks, Garden & Gun for taking us behind the scenes in honor of its 75th anniversary! (gardenandgun.com)

2. Did you know you can make your own fruit snacks using just four (all natural, I might add) ingredients? I can’t wait to grab the last of the summer strawberries and try this recipe. (anorganicwife.com)

3. Grab some headphones and tune into the NPR tiny desk concert featuring my favorite bluegrass boys. (npr.org)

4. For all of you PR ladies and gents, Keeping Positive in PR. (nycprgirls.com)

5. 36 Hours In Nashville. (thenewyorktimes.com)

6. 6 Things To Do Before Making a Big Decision. (relevant.com)

7. The Summer’s Best Onstage Instagrams From Musicians – Katy Perry’s is my favorite, shock. (vogue.com)

XOXO,

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The September Checklist

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It’s September! HOORAY HURRAH! It’s no secret this is my favorite month of the year, well, it’s in my top two only to be rivaled by Christmas’s December. So while I’m a little sad to see Summer fade, this means Fall is well on it’s way and with it comes back-to-school sales, the return of good TV and pumpkin everything. What other amazing things do we have to look forward to this month?

September 4: Beyonce’s Birthday

Yep, it’s Queen B’s birthday. Celebrate all day by embodying all things fierce. Oh, and this is the perfect excuse to keep her greatest hits on replay all day long.

September 4-11: New York Fashion Week

Grab your highest stilettos and prepare to see all the hottest looks for Spring 2015…while you look through Vogues September issue and plan your fall looks.

National Better Breakfast Month

Ditch the granola bar and puulease, put down the Pop-Tart. Wake up early enough to make yourself a well-balanced, lovely breakfast. Try one of these amazing recipes and thank me later.

September 8: National Grandparents’ Day

Give your precious grandma or grandpa a call and tell them how much you love them! Brownie points if you send a sweet card via snail mail – correspondance is everything!

September 18: My Birthday

Had to! I haven’t quite finished my lofty list of to-do’s before I turn 28 but hey, all the more to accomplish in the coming years! P.S. Gifts not required but I never turn down chocolate.

September 23: The First Day of Fall

This is the day I will allow myself to fully embrace all the pumpkin and cinnamon smells and flavors – pumpkin spice latte anyone? Fingers crossed it will no longer be 90 degrees in Nashville and I will be able to frolic comfortably in jeans.

September 25: Scandal Returns!

Shonda Rhimes is my girl and while this presidential fare tends to be cheesy and melodramatic, I cannot wait to see what Olivia Pope handles, and wears, next.

Happy September, all!

XOXO,

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Links I’m Loving

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1. Gear up for the return of college football by meeting the wives of SEC coaches. (saturdaydownsouth.com)

2. Transition into fall with boyfriend jeans and a bright lip. (sunshadesandsnowflakes.com)

3. Glean that bridal knowledge and learn from the 50 mistakes brides always make. (brides.com)

4. I’m on a spending freeze but maybe you aren’t and want to splurge on these beauty essentials. (glitterguide.com)

5. Start practicing all-day habits for a better night’s sleep. (self.com)

6. I dare you to read through the 8 Life-Changing Lessons We’ve Learned From Dogs and not tear up smile. (hellogiggles.com)

7. I hate that I love the new Taylor Swift song. (youtube.com)

XOXO,

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10 Ways To Soak Up These Last Days Of Summer

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August is coming to a close – can you believe it? – and while it doesn’t feel like it right now, Fall is almost here. (YAY!) So in an attempt to be present and appreciate the here and now, I’ve thought about some ways to enjoy these last days of summer before we bid the heat farewell. Who’s in?

  1. Grab a magazine and an extra large ice water and head to the pool for one last hurrah! SPF required.
  2. Wear your favorite sundress and strappy sandals to run errands or for date night!
  3. Grab some peaches and make this. (NOM) 
  4. Wear white from head to toe because hey! you still can.
  5. Get your HGTV on and DIY something, whether that’s giving your kitchen a fresh coat of paint or giving your doormat a facelift that all your guests will ooh and ahh over.
  6. Go to a late movie and don’t feel bad one bit for eating too many sour punch straws and popcorn.
  7. Take full advantage of your hammock and relax for a while underneath the stars.
  8. Have a porch? Grab some sweet tea and good friends and sit for a while.
  9. Work on your fitness outdoors. Tennis, running, or touch football anyone?
  10. Popsicles at the park. If you’re in Nashville, might I suggest here.

XOXO,

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The Weeknight Date Night

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You know those Mondays that feel about two weeks long and leave you exhausted/frustrated/emotionally done at the end of the day? Yep, I had one of those this week so you can imagine my excitement when the fiance suggested we go out for dinner and a movie last night. I love a good weeknight date night because not only does it make you feel like it’s Friday (!!!) but it gives you a chance to break up the work week with some fun time.

We went for some Chinese – his favorite – and then to see the new Oprah movie – my choice, naturally. We laughed all through dinner and then got plenty of candy for the movie. We were both pleasantly surprised by how sweet the movie was – I highly recommend it! – and fear not, Oprah does not make a cameo. It was the perfect way to spend a Tuesday night and I woke up this morning feeling more relaxed and rejuvenated for the rest of my work week.

Ladies and gentleman, might I suggest an impromptu date on a school night? Ladies, throw on a little lip color and some fun shoes. Gentlemen, let her pick the movie and you might find yourself enjoying it, too! The most important thing is spending time with the one you love. Take your mind off all the other stuff you’ve both got going on and focus on each other. Chinese and chick flick optional.

What’s your favorite weeknight date spot? Let’s hear ‘em.

XOXO,

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Mom and Me and the Wedding Dress

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Last weekend Mom and I headed to Arkansas to find the perfect wedding dress. Why Arkansas? That was my initial question, too, but another bride had told us this was “THE place” located in the middle of nowhere. Mom and I had no idea what to expect when we drove up to Low’s Bridal last Saturday morning – this was a first for both of us – so we were anxious but mostly excited as the massive gates, yes GATES, opened. Remember that episode of Friends where the girls go shopping for Monica’s dress and 50+ aggressive brides run though the doors as soon as they’re open? It was kind of like that, but much more civilized and passive, of course. It is a nice place, after all. Gorgeous and perfectly Southern. Low’s is located in an old train station and I loved that we got a small history lesson as we walked to a new floor or room.

After I filled out some paperwork about my wedding date and preferred styles, we were greeted by our consultant who then whisked us away to the next floor up. Talk about dresses on dresses! Mom was in heaven and I was in a dreamy state of “ummm” while she pulled a couple dresses for me to start with. We moved from dress to dress and floor to floor and finally we narrowed the search down to two dresses, completely different in every way. I was torn.

“Want to try a veil?” Our consultant asked, adding that this final touch is typically the tipping point for most brides who are indecisive. She added the veil to my high ponytail and I stepped onto the block surrounded by mirrors and the next thing I knew Mom was crying. That was the dress, and oddly enough, the second wedding dress I had ever tried on! It was such a surreal moment, standing there in white and seeing Mom’s face light up. I attempted a happy dance, much to the amusement of other brides and consultants scurrying around with armfuls of lace and tulle, then offered Mom a tissue.

As we walked to the car, dress bag safely in tow, we were all smiles. It was such a perfect morning spent with Mom – laughing, gauging the “wow” factor of each dress, taking pictures on the grand staircase, and wedding scheming. A morning I’ll never forget.

XOXO,

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The Art Of Correspondence

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I recently got engaged – YAY! – so the crickets for the past few weeks are justified. I’ve been basking in the glow, gabbing with all my girlfriends and trying to keep Mom calm, cool and collected amongst all her lists and charts. The fiance and I are beyond thrilled, and while the diamond and wedding planning is fun, we’re most looking forward to starting our life together.

So with an engagement comes so many kind words and well wishes, many in the form of beautiful stationary with matching envelope. While I love using my iPhone – publicist problems – I’ve always been a huge fan of communicating the old-fashioned way, i.e. correspondence that requires a stamp. Call me crazy, but there’s much to be said for receiving a sweet, handwritten note at just the right time and hey, who doesn’t enjoy checking the mail to find something other than a bill?  I also find something therapeutic about writing notes to friends or co-workers just because, whether it be a note of thanks or something on the silly side simply because the card made you giggle for two minutes too long. BONUS: Writing a note takes you about 2-3 minutes and will more than likely make the recipient’s entire day!

Need some inspiration to get you in the corresponding sort of mood? Here are some of my favorite places to find great stationary for any and every occasion:

Inslee 

The Paper Source 

Scarlet & Gold

Etsy 

XOXO,

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Hey Girl, Your Dreams Just Got Crushed

Well, maybe.

Every news source with a twitter handle is reporting that Eva Mendes is having Ryan Gosling’s child. We all knew this day would come and call me old fashioned, but I thought I would have a wedding to mourn over first. Nope. Just straight to “we’re having a baby who will have the prettiest eyes ever and we’ll all live happily ever after looking gorgeous.” All the single ladies (including Rachel McAdams), don’t lose heart. There are still plenty of eligible bachelors out there to swoon over. Ahem:

Bradley Cooper

Leonardo DiCaprio

Prince Harry

Drake

John Stamos

That one guy in Divergent 

Sam Hunt

XOXO,

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Simplify Your Closet, Simplify Your Life

01cb193ee343fedf3da0551933a7cd89Sure, Spring is when the cleaning happens but Summer is definitely when the simplifying should happen. It’s hot out. When you’re not at work you’re outside, vacationing, planning your next vacation or taking up a new sport (ask me about my recently acquired tennis skills!) What you don’t want to be doing is spending forever sorting through all the articles of clothing and shoes and random belts/scarves thrown everywhere in your closet! Honestly this morning I found two shirts I cannot ever remember wearing and one that I am 98% sure hasn’t been worn since college. In an effort to simplify this summer, I am vowing to start by simplifying my closet!

Here are some questions I will ask myself in a stern tone when going through the keep/toss process:

When was the last time I wore this?

Do I feel like it’s flattering? Or so comfortable that I don’t even care if it’s flattering? 

Does this reflect my personal style?

Can I dress this up & down? 

Did I wear this on a major date with THAT Ex? 

Does this make me look like a high school student?

Does this make me look like my grandmother? 

Is this a statement piece that I absolutely cannot imagine parting with? 

Bottom line: If I don’t love it, I’m tossing it, and by tossing it I mean selling it for $2 at a yard sale and/or donating to Goodwill. My goal is to get rid of the excess and simplify – starting with my closet. Who’s with me?

XOXO,

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