Thursday, April 30, 2015

Spring Flowers in Charleston: Outfit of the Month

This month's budget was a little low for my OOTM shopping.  Mike and I went to the Masters a few weeks back, and obviously used our spending money this month to buy tickets and some fantastic Augusta merchandise.  Besides this new mug, I'd say my favorite purchase would be my new striped koozies.  I was told that I can't actually start living as a "Southern girl" until I have a koozie in my bag at all time, and bonus: the koozie set I bought has two that are magnetic so you never lose them AND can share one with a friend!
Alright, now back to my outfit this month.  I stopped in at TJ Maxx one day between visits to work sites and was thrilled to see tons of pretty spring colors.  My eye was drawn to a rack of $15 maxi dresses.  (Mind you, I am 5 feet tall and have never even tried on a maxi dress.)  For some reason (probably the price), these dresses struck me, and before I knew it, I was checking out with a spring favorite.  I've worn it a few times including to this month's Charleston Blog Society event and a couple of weekends ago when my sister-in-law was here.

I couldn't find the exact dress online (Don't you hate when you ask someone where they got something and they reply with TJ's or Marshall's?  Yeah, you're never finding that piece.), but I did find other dresses from the same company in the same style on Amazon here.
#PALE ...hopefully that'll change for next month's OOTM after our Bahamas honeymoon in a couple of weeks!

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

A Lilly-Inspired Wedding Wednesday

Welcome back to Wedding Wednesday!  Today, I thought I'd share a little spring wedding inspiration.  I obviously went to my favorite site, Pinterest, and started searching.  I stumbled upon a fantastic collection of pins all centered around a certain current fashion phenomenon.  Yeah, you guessed it from the title, huh?  Well, I decided to run with it, and surprisingly found Lilly-inspired pins for almost every aspect of a wedding.  If I were getting married in the South, I would definitely incorporate some of these into my wedding!

Getting ready in monograms and pearls
Lilly-inspired garter
Bouquet in all colors Lilly
Lilly bridesmaid dresses
Place cards
Love this cake!
Favors for the adults
And for the kids
And, of course, what's a Southern wedding without a giant monogram?

Thanks so much for reading, and now it's your turn.  Share a wedding-inspired post with us!  Use the button, if you'd like, and please link back to my or Macy's blog so that others can join in Wedding Wednesday, too!

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Mother's Day from Miles Away

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser.  All opinions are mine alone.  #BestMomsDayEver #CollectiveBias
Living 1,000 miles away from my mom is hard, especially with Mother's Day coming up.  As an only child, it was always the three of us: Mom, Dad, and Meg-Meg.  This will be the first Mother's Day that I won't be spending with my mom.  Instead, my goal is to make this the Best Mom's Day Ever, even from across the country!

Almost every Mother's Day, I've given my mom a homemade gift.  Ripped-out coloring book pages, tissue paper flower masterpieces (you know the kind), decorated photo frames, and haiku poems have topped the list.  This year, I knew I had to keep that theme going and made my mom a little DIY project that would be easy to send to her: a black and white collaged ampersand.

All you need is: a wooden letter or symbol of your choice (I chose an ampersand), printed black and white photos in multiple sizes (to see what fits best and not have to go back and print more), scissors, modge podge, a foam brush, different gray and black paints, and a paintbrush.

Start by cutting out each photo and glueing it to the ampersand with the modge podge, leaving a little space in between the photos.  Once all of the photos are glued, wait for them to dry, and then begin to blend the colors of the photos into one another.  To do this, look at the edges of your photo: do they have a light edge or dark edge?  Start with a paint close to that color and use the gray and black paints to blend the two edges into one another.  Once that dries, finish the letter with a full layer of modge podge (don't worry it will dry clear).

After my wood letter dried, it was time to wrap!  Yo yo yo it'll soon be Mother's Day, you know this gift will soon be on its way, time to tie it with a bow, then to the mail box I will go... oh, not that kind of rap? whoops.  Moving on - I grabbed these great wrapping supplies at my local Walmart's American Greetings card section.

Right now, American Greetings also a huge "Best Mother's Day Ever" card section in Walmart!  Seriously, it took me a solid 5 minutes to find the right card.  Not only did I grab a card for my mom, we also got one for Mike's grandma - it's definitely an one-stop shop.  There were also cards for godmothers, step mothers, great-grandmothers, and any other "mom" figure in your life!

Since this present is traveling across the country, I used tissue paper first to give the ampersand a little extra padding, then covered the tissue paper in the fun flowery wrapping paper I bought in the "Best Mother's Day Ever" section at Walmart.  I topped it with a bow, and the last step was signing the card.

I was really excited to find "mother from daughter and husband" cards at Walmart since this is the first time we've been married for Mother's Day.  The card we chose was colorful and heartfelt, perfect for my mom.
Now it's all packaged up and ready to go to the post office!  Don't forget, Mother's Day is May 10th this year, so you have less than two weeks to plan your own Best Mom's Day Ever.  Don't have a clue what to get mom? Visit the American Greetings inspiration page for tons of original ideas, and, of course, don't forget the American Greetings card for Walmart!

#BestMomsDayEver Giveaway- $4,000 Prize Value #BestMomsDayEver Giveaway- $4,000 Prize Value
  • How are you planning to celebrate a special mom in your life this Mother's Day?  
  • Is anyone else a homemade gift giver like me?  What's the best gift you ever gave your mom?

Monday, April 27, 2015

What Weekends Are For...

Oh weekend, I miss you already.  This was surely a good one with lots of relaxing and apparently a lots of drinks?  Our weekend started at Thursty Thursday at the Charleston RiverDogs game with a visit by the Budweiser Clydesdales, seriously, they're so cool and HUGE!  Friday, we went bowling but not before Mike brought me to Zaxby's to get their new birthday cake milkshake.  If you have a Zaxby's near you, drop whatever you are doing and GO RIGHT NOW.  The cake flavor is on point and the chocolate whipped cream puts it over the top.  A rainy Saturday was all about shopping and relaxing.  We bought way too many things at Target some awesome new patio lights, and I am loving our little screen porch this spring!  On Sunday, we had a little deep fryer fun (helloooo fried Oreos), and played a very hot game of golf.

  • How was your weekend?
  • Are you known for splurging a little on the weekends, too?

Linking up for: Weekend Recap, Weekending, and Monday Madness!

Friday, April 24, 2015

Can't Live Without It

Happy Friday!  My week wasn't exactly too eventful, so I couldn't find 5 things to share with you - haha.  Instead, I'm linking up with Cait, Laura, and Stephanie to share three of my current favorite things before the weekend!

Neutrogena Naturals Purifying Makeup Remover Cleansing Wipes*: For Earth Day, I received these wipes from Influenster.  Neutrogena Naturals is partnering with The Nature Conservancy to create the #WipeforWater campaign.  Did you know that you can waste up to 5 gallons of water a day by washing your face?  I like to wash my face at the end of the day, just as much as the next girl, but I still figured I'd give it a try and try to save some water.  I usually use Neutrogena's Makeup Removing Cleansing Towelettes, and they leave my face with an oily residue that I need to wash off.  I tried the Naturals wipes against my usual wipes (one on each eye/side of my face).  The natural wipes removed the makeup just as well, smelled great (like pear and green apple), did not leave the normal greasy feeling, but I did feel a slight burning sensation under my eye.  So, in the long run, I did need to wash my face to get rid of that feeling.  However, if I was just removing eye makeup, I wouldn't need to wash my face.

Schick Hydro Silk Trimstyle^: Let's be honest, I usually use a men's razor.  They're sharper and seem to last longer for me.  However, I really like this razor so far.  I've been using it for a week or so now, and it's still sharp.  The cost of the razor is pretty good, too (less than $20) and it's only about $3 a piece for replacement cartridges. 

Barefoot Bubbly - Moscato Spumante: This is definitely a go-to for me.  I love the apricot and peachy flavors, and it's great added to one of my favorite cocktails (here) to give a little esservesents (anyone? anyone?).  And let's be real, I definitely just put it in the mason jars for this photo opp - Mike and I are known for splitting a bottle of champagne, straight out of the bottle a couple times per week.

* I received this product complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes. #WipeforWater #contest
^ I received this product complimentary from BzzAgent for testing purposes.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

5 Workout Tips for Brides + Lululemon Giveaway

Welcome back to Wedding Wednesday!  Today I'm switching it up a little and sharing a post for my future brides out there.  Navigating the whole workout scene pre-wedding is something that scared me.  I wanted to look great for my wedding, but spent the time from 3 months to 1 month before my wedding bouncing from house to house, while moving 1,000 miles away from home.  These are some tips that really helped me feel great on the big day:

1. Be realistic with your expectations.  Honestly, I know that my weight fluctuates, and I also know that I stress a lot (Reason #1 we didn't have an outdoor wedding - I did not feel like worrying about something I couldn't control.).  I chose my dress 11 months prior to the wedding and ordered it in the same size I was wearing at the time.  It's so much easier to take most dresses in, rather than taking them out.  I also opted for a corset-style back, so that I would have plenty of wiggle room, just in case.  I've watched far too many episodes of "Say Yes To The Dress" with women crying on their big day when they couldn't zip up their dress - haha!

2. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate.  Making sure I'm drinking enough water throughout the day keeps me focused and honestly curbs some of those mid-afternoon food cravings, too.  I always start the day with a cup of warm water with lemon (helps with weight loss, clears skin, detoxes your body... I could go on and on), begin my lunch and dinner with a glass of cold water (gets my metabolism going and helps me eat less), and always have a water bottle with me.  My goal is about 70 ounces of water each day.

3.  Be happy.  To me, working out is what I make it.  Personally, I hate running on a treadmill, so guess what?  I don't do it.  When I am forced to exercise inside, I instead choose an elliptical, stationary bike, or use that day to work on strength training.  I am also always switching it up - you should try it: find a Pilates video on YouTube, walk 18 holes of golf, or check out one of these.
4. Don't forget your arms!  I feel like most wedding dresses right now are either strapless or have very thin straps.  You're showing off lots of arms, and trust me, you want them to look good.  Here is a post I wrote before my wedding with different circuits I was doing at the time.  That 30 Day Arm Challenge is fantastic!  Definitely check it out and consider adding some "arms" into your daily routine.

5.  Look good while you do it.  Okay, so maybe that's not a real one, but you know it helps!  I have a little more skip in my stride when I'm wearing a cool new workout skirt or new sneaks.  So, I've teamed up with 15 other pretty ladies for a fantastic spring training giveaway.  I am especially loving this Wild Tank and these Run Times Shorts.  Enter the giveaway below with the Rafflecopter widget (you might already have a few entries if you follow me on GFC, Bloglovin, or IG!).  Good luck!
Spring Training $200 Lululemon Giveaway

Thanks so much for reading, and now it's your turn.  Share a wedding-inspired post with us!  Use the button, if you wish, and please link back to my or Macy's blog so that others can join in Wedding Wednesday, too!

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

The Best Chardonnay Wine Sauce

I don't know about you, but whenever we go to Costco, those free samples suck me in.  We've bought delicious chicken and apple sausage, huge packages of mango and pineapple salsa, and most recently: grilled chicken and mozzarella ravioli.  They served it there with a delicious olive oil and garlic sauce, so instead of topping it with red sauce like we usually do for pasta, we decided to experiment with a white wine sauce.  Luckily, the ravioli comes in two packs, so even though the first attempt wasn't great, the second was definitely a winner.  It has the perfect combination of wine flavor, cheese, and tomatoes to give it a little something extra.  If you give it a try, let me know!  

1/4 cup olive oil
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 shallot, minced
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 tablespoon butter
12-15 grape tomatoes (red or yellow), sliced in half
2 tablespoons half and half
1/2 cup chardonnay
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
Additional parmesan cheese for serving

1. On medium heat, bring the olive oil up to heat in a large skillet.
2. Add the garlic, shallot, and red pepper and sauté for 2 minutes.
3. Add in the butter and tomatoes and sauté for another 2 minutes.
4. Add in the half and half, chardonnay, and parmesan cheese.
If you are cooking fresh pasta in the sauce:
5. Place uncooked pasta in sauce and cook for 3-4 minutes.
If you are pre-cooking dried or frozen pasta separately:
5. Cook sauce for an additional 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, and add in cooked pasta to coat.
6. Serve with additional parmesan cheese, and enjoy!

Linking up for all of my favorite Tuesday food link-ups (Tuesday's Recipe SwapTwo Cup TuesdayTry A New Recipe TuesdayDelicious Dish Tuesday, and Tasty Tuesdays)!

Monday, April 20, 2015

The Things Lilly Patterns Are Made Of: Sun, Beach, Pineapples, and Limes

Our weekend was very Lilly-esque, well, in concept, not in actuality, but I'll get there - haha.  What a weekend it was!  Mike's sister-in-law and her boyfriend are in Charleston for the first time, so this weekend gave us the opportunity to do all of our favorite things.

On Saturday, we did the Johns/Kiawah Island loop: Charleston Tea Plantation, Firefly Distillery, beach walk at The Sanctuary (the water is already up to 68 degrees!), and The Ryder Cup Bar at The Ocean Course for drinks and apps.  If you're ever in Charleston for a few days, I definitely suggest making this one of your days!  We spent the night playing Pitch (or as Mike calls it Setback or some call it High Low Jack Game - you know the game??) and digesting delicious DeSano's.

Then came Sunday.  Alright, it's time for the Lilly for Target recap, pick me up after the next photos if you have no interest haha: My sister-in-law and I hopped in the car and got to Target at 7:45.  After seeing the line outside the store, we laughed and came super close to just turning around and driving back home, but we decided to at least check it out and watch the craziness.  I took a photo of the line and counted: there were a solid 80-100 people in front of us.  I honestly couldn't believe how many people got there early, and I'd love to know how early the people at the front of the line got there.  Well, we got in right at 8:00 to (obviously) empty shelves.  Legit, everything was gone in 30 seconds or less.  To be honest, I was pretty surprised at how small each of the collection sections were: 3 racks for women's clothes and shoes altogether, an end cap for makeup and bags, and a table at the front of the outdoor shop for the beach stuff.  While I knew at 7:45 that I was never going to get anything, I was secretly still a little disappointed but that didn't last long.  Erika and I had been texting since before I got to Target (she and her daughter were a different Target up the road), and at 8:00 I got a text asking if I still wanted flat sandals and what size.  I didn't respond for a solid 5 minutes, trying not to get killed in the mad rush entrance, and a minute after that, I got a photo of some beautiful gold pineapple sandals (one of my 5 favorites!) in my size.  Seriously, how do I have such awesome friends?? Needless to say, it was definitely not a total bust (well, my adventure was, but at least I'll get to wear some sweet sandals, soon!).  I tried to see what Target had online when I came home (yeah, staying up until 2 am was not going to happen lol), but no luck, so I'll be happy with my sandals and save all that money I didn't spend for something else!

Okay, welcome back to some of you - haha.  Sunday, my pedometer tells me that we walked 7.4 miles.  We started on Upper King, walked all the way down to the Battery with stops at the College of Charleston and along Tradd Street, up to the pineapple fountain, through the Market and back up King. Phew.

We went back to the apartment, took naps (we needed them after that Target start and all that walking) and played some more cards, watching the crazy thunderstorms.  Dinner was at the Charleston Crab House with drinks afterwards at Prohibition, finished off with some Jeni's ice cream.  As you can tell, like with all of our guests, we definitely ate our way through the city.

Now we still have two more days with Laura and Bill!!  Mike's hanging out with them at the beach this morning while I work, and this afternoon, we're off to Sullivan's for some delicious Poe's and an adventure at Fort Moultrie.  Then, tomorrow before work, we're heading to Magnolia Plantation (Mike and I haven't even been there yet!) and finishing off their trip at Zia - what could be better?!

Linking up for: Weekend Recap, Weekending, and Monday Madness!

Friday, April 17, 2015

High Five (for Lilly) on Friday

Hooray!  My sister-in-law and her boyfriend get here tonight to spend a long weekend with us.  I'm so excited to see them and show them some of our favorite sights, but I already warned her that Sunday morning, I will be up bright and early to book it to Target for the opening of the Lilly Pulitzer for Target collaboration.  In anticipation, here are the five things I'm most excited about.  I know not all of the collection will be available in the store (check out the full look book with notes under each item about where it will be available here), but I'm hoping to get a couple of fun finds on Sunday.  Here are five things I'm loving:





Have you checked out the Lilly Pulitzer for Target line and will you be there bright and early on Sunday morning?  What's your favorite piece in the collaboration?  

And lastly, because usually on Fridays I post about my week, here is the one exciting thing I did this week (and it shares the shopping theme!): on Tuesday, I went to a fantastic Charleston Blog Society event at Elizabeth Stuart Design, an amazing interior design shop in Charleston.  We enjoyed food from Tavern & Table, drinks from The Cocktail Bandits, and listened to the owner and founder of ESD, Muffie, talk all about her life and experience with design.  It was fantastic!

Design Poppiness Designs