Monday, August 31, 2015

This jacket is tops

For the past 5 years, each summer I carry my favorite purse - a dooney and bourke satchel in zebra print. It's totes amazeballs. But it's so big I always end up putting a ton of stuff in there (you never know, maybe I will need 8 lipsticks, 2 chargers, and a whole box of bandaids today). My shoulder aches from carrying it lately. Work around: there are so may pockets in this jacket that I don't have to bring a purse, haha! It's great.

 

 
 

 

 

 

 

jacket, jcrew factory store

top, splendid

joe's jeans

leopard sneakers, circus by sam edelman (old, but these are similar)

 

 

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Epic Big Mama Wreath

I was feeling crafty, and spent some time this weekend making a decorative autumn wreath for my front door.

 

HOW TO MAKE AN EPIC BIG MAMA WREATH:

I went to the local craft store and got the components for my super cool wreath:

 

1 giant wire wreath form,

6 rolls of burlap (2 natural, 2 orange, and 2 purple),

wire or pipe cleaners,

fancy things like pumpkins, twigs, or berries,

and you probably already have some scissors

 

 

Ancient chinese proverb say: dog sleeping under craft table is good omen.

 

 

Secure the end of the burlap to the outermost ring of the wreath frame with some wire. Then, weave the burlap fabric back and forth, so it is pinned underneath the frame. No wrapping around the frame is required; the burlap is thick enough so that it stays pinned in place by the frame.


FYI, I think each roll of burlap I used was 30 ft long

 

 

 

 

Keep going! When I bought this wire wreath frame, I didn't realize what a giant wreath it would make! The fabric makes the wreath larger than the frame, of course. C'est la vie.

 

 

 

Keep on keepin on - you can do it! Go make yourself a cocktail too. I made one ring of brown burlap, one ring of orange, and then one ring with purple dyed burlap.

 

 

 

 

 


Once you're done wrapping (it took me a long time for big mama wreath), then you can add the fun stuff like twigs, berries, pine cones, sparkly vegetables, skulls, or spiders. 


 
 
 
 
Acorns! Raleigh, NC is the City of Oaks

 

 

The burlap isn't a tightly woven fabric, so I just shoved these small items into the fabric and wiggled them around until they looked nice. I did secure the pinecone and the 2 pumpkins with extra wire. you can also use a hot glue gun to secure things to the burlap.

 

All done! Not so bad, right? I plan on getting a (fake) spider web and a spider to hang in the center of the wreath for Halloween. I feel autumn coming already!

 

 

Epic Big Mama Wreath

 

 

Friday, August 28, 2015

Thank a Farmer Today

Although I might not grow much in the way of food, I am a successful farmer of flowers and herbs in my container garden.

 

 
 
 
David the Gnome scares the animals away
 
 
 
 
 
 
I made art! Too bad there wasn't enough room for more stars

 

 

A begionia (left) and my tiny rose plant (right)

 

 

At least I always have some basil for pizza, and mint for mojitos :D

 

 

Thursday, August 27, 2015

When the Going gets Tough

The Kon-dough challenge is tough! I have cleared out my closet of all sorts of junk in the past year, and hopefully this challenge will help keep it that way. If you'll remember from my previous post, I challenged myself (and anyone else) to buy one new item of [clothing or accessories or shoes] per month. This forces you to think very carefully about your purchases, and will probably save me money in the long run. I am particularly weak when things are "on sale!", so I am hoping to improve my determination.

 

I don't like to think of it as a FAILURE that I bought 2 new items this month (August) - but that I am traveling down the road to success. No one is perfect, ok? I would also like to qualify one of the purchases because I had a gift card for about a third of the cost.

 

Here's the down and dirty:

 

 

(1) beach shorts, $34, from Athleta (25% off, on sale). I had a pair of these short from last year, and they fit great! They are made from quick-drying and soft fabric, and have good-sized hip pockets. These are superb dog walking shorts. I had a gift card to pay for $13 of the cost. Woot woot!

 

 

Athleta beach shortie in navy stripe

 

And, in my weakness... here is item #2:
 

(2) Floggs Fain Sandal, from MyHabit (77% off, on sale). I am a sucker for sale shoes, and since my foot is pretty small, it seems shoes are always on sale. Sad story, right? Check out the rest of the shoes by Floggs, they are pretty awesome lately. All the reviews that I have read mention that they are super comfortable, which is always a plus. The ones I got are in patent red - to add some punchy color to my closet. Totally worth it - right?

 

 

floggs fain sandal

 

 

 

 

 

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Monday, August 24, 2015

Rooster Sauce

I have developed a long term relationship with Sriracha sauce*, and seem to sneak it into all of the dishes that I prepare at home. Imagine my delight when I saw this at the store:

 

 

Sriracha Stout Beer!

 

 

The beer bottle even looks like the sauce packaging! I am thinking to myself - "Self, I think this is somehow better than putting sriracha sauce directly into my guinness...."

 

*Sriracha Sauce: an average review of 5 stars (out of 5 stars) from 546 people on Amazon. You need to try this stuff. As for the beer, I need more time to consider this purchase - probably until the weather gets cooler.

 

? Did you know ?

North Carolina does not allow alcohol sales between 2am and 7am Monday through Saturday or before noon on Sundays.

Several of North Carolina's 100 counties are considered "dry". However, individual towns may pass ordinances that allow alcohol sales within the municipal limits even if the county itself is dry. (Graham County is the only one of 100 counties in North Carolina that prohibits the sale of alcohol.)


I won't be visiting Graham county anytime soon...

 

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Fat Pants

I have been hesitant to jump aboard the "boyfriend jeans" train. I am at the tipping point, where cool, slouchy boyfriend jeans turn into fat pants (like those you wear to eat Thanksgiving dinner). I have tried many iterations of this trend as sold in stores, and none are flattering on me.

But, I have found an alternative method to achieve the slouchy-but-not-too-baggy denim look. Woot Woot! See Exhibit (A) skinny jeans, in one size larger than normal. In this case, the jeans are still fitted from high waist to hip, but then get looser below. The rise is higher, and this pair is also a big long - but they cuff nicely since the circumference at the ankle is smallest (so they stay cuffed all day). Notice that they are still slim enough to fit into my booties (if that is a concern). These are so comfortable, I have been wearing them constantly. I am a convert! All hail slouchy(er) jeans!

Note that the baggy-ness may depend on the type of denim (these are 97% cotton and mid weight denim). And, I'm sure that this won't work with all types of skinny jeans; each brand/size is different. These are Gap 1969 'resolution true skinny mid-rise' jeans, and they work for me.



diana's new fave slouchy pants
 
 
 

 

Thursday, August 20, 2015

The Kon-dough challenge

Who's ready for a challenge??

This girl.




I propose the 2015 Kon-dough* Challenge! I dare you to participate. The challenge is:

Limit purchases to one piece (clothing, shoes, accessories) per month.
Of those purchases, if you don't 100% love it, and it doesn't 100% make you look great...
put it down!

The goal is to keep my budget intact while another "NEW FALL SEASON OF FABULOUS STYLES" takes over. Fall is a tough time for people who enjoy the new clothes, shoes, and accessories that appear in stores this time each year. By August, I am ready to be done summer, and am thinking ahead to all sorts of festivities (Oktoberfest, Halloween, leaves falling, Thanksgiving, etc...). It's best to save money for exciting experiences during this time of year, right?

Of course, if you already have an iron grip on your spending habits - feel free to keep tabs on my progress.

I'm a terrible liar, so I will make sure to let you all know how it goes :P

* get it? Kondo? Kon-dough? Saving money? Kondo your closet? Right.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Oh myyyyyy

You all need to see this slideshow.

Just get yourself a cup of coffee...

and prepare to laugh so hard you spit it all over your computer screen.

 

Workout style in the 80's

 

"My legs are so warm right now."

 

For real. Did people really wear this? I'm still skeptical.

 

 

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Wanted: Ham Sandwich

Just the other day, I walked by a storefront and saw these two mannequins.




Looks like this mannequin is doing the Charleston or something; I'm not sure what's going on here. These also may be as skinny and ridiculous as the Topshop mannequins


Monday, August 17, 2015

Birds the word

Every summer I put up a hummingbird feeder. There are several varieties that live in North Carolina during the summer. I believe that this is the female ruby throated hummingbird. Though the male has the ruby colored throat, both male and females have iridescent plumage. These birds average 3 to 3.5 inches in size, and feed on nectar and insects.





https://www.carolinabirdclub.org/gallery/Bell/rthu_2.html
Female ruby-throated hummingbird, from the Carolina Bird Club


https://www.carolinabirdclub.org/gallery/Fiala/rthu_2.html
Male ruby-throated hummingbird, from Carolina Bird Club




Saturday, August 15, 2015

Getting fresh

Fresh has best ice cream in town. I recommend the coconut almond + midnight brownie waffle cone. I believe (correct me if I'm wrong) that since this icecream is home-made and local, there are no calories.



i dream of ice cream
 
 
nom nom nom
 
 
 
floral mesh top, banana republic (try here and here)
bag, urban outfitters (mine is old, but try this if you like fringe, or check this out in stripes)
 
I was not compensated by FRESH for this post... although I wish I was.
 
 
 
 
 
 


 

Friday, August 14, 2015

Salud!

I feel the end is near! The end of summer, that is.

So I've been pulling out my favorite summer pieces to wear a few more times before they get packed away. (I do pack away 'summer' and 'winter' clothes each season, but that's another story for another day)

Enter Soludos! I love espadrilles, and these are so comfortable and cute. Check them out now at the Shopbop sale- you may find a bargain!



Stripes are my friend.

 
Bracelet, h&m
 
 
Not just a plain white T
 

 

 

 

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Kondo-ing it up

I recently read Marie Kondo's book about de-cluttering your life. Even if you don't have any clutter (or don't care if you do) - I recommend this book as it's entertaining regardless.


Get it on your kindle to reduce clutter!


On that note, I am shopping my closet before i head out to make any purchases. I need to avoid accidentally buying multiples of things I like! It's tougher than you think.

Take, for example, these pants:


$24.99 from TJ Maxx
(these are similar)


I really like a black and white graphic/print. And, these pants are well made and fit great (even for <$25!). My mission is to wear them this summer and into the colder months ahead.

I wear them now:







pants, tj maxx
sandals, sam & libby for target
necklace, simply vera for kohl's

And I plan to wear them later:









Tuesday, August 11, 2015

The Space Between

This is a workout top that actually gets me excited to go do cardio at the gym (no small feat)! Looks like it would also stay put during yoga, too.



     I am a sucker for anything space-themed. It's on sale now at Kohl's. See the similarity?



Saturday, August 8, 2015

Swamp Life

I took these photos this summer at Honey Island Swamp, in Slidell, Louisiana. My new favorite friends are the marshmallow-loving swamp piggies!





















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