Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Three Days, One Carry-On: Ten Tips for Weekend Packing

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If you've been around this blog for a while, you know that Mike and I love to travel.  Whether it's heading back to New England to visit family or jet-setting to a new city to check off a baseball stadium, we love any excuse to hop on a plane and go.  You might have seen last month that he even surprised me with a trip to Washington, D.C. for my birthday.  Two hours before our flight, I didn't know that we were even going, never mind where it was!  When he told me to get packing, only letting me in on the high and low for the weekend and saying I could bring one bag, it got me thinking that I'd love to share how we do it.
Before even thinking about packing, having the energy to travel is number one, and adventuring (with all the walking involved) requires a lot of stamina.  Nature Made® Energy†† B12 Adult Gummies contain 1000 mcg vitamin B12 per serving.  Nature Made® has partnered with the USP, an independent 3rd party, nonprofit organization that tests its gummies for purity and potency so you get the added assurance that it has the nutrients you're seeking. With verification from USP for purity and potency, Nature Made® Adult Gummies is a gummy you can trust.  Learn more about Nature Made® and USP here.
Now that we'll have energy to do what we want at our destination, it's time to pack.  We never check bags, always have options to wear, and are sure to have the essentials on-hand.  Having our packing strategy down, it took me less than a half hour to get my bag together and get on the road for our surprise trip in October.  Here are my tips for packing in one bag for a weekend away:
1. Choose one color scheme: I prefer black and white, but having a bunch of shirts and pants I can wear interchangeably is key for me.

2. Gather layers: Daytime highs and nighttime lows can be definite swings, and I like having everything from tank tops to sweaters to wear.
3. Wear the bulkiest items on the plane: This way, you have more room in your suitcase!
4. Roll everything: Not only does this take up less space, but you also don't get creases from folds.
5. Minimize shoes: Find one or two pairs to wear that will go with every outfit.  Shoes always take up the most room!

6. Pack travel-size: When I travel, I love having my own shampoo (I think I'm the only person in the world who doesn't like hotel shampoo).  I even have a mini pill container for my Nature Made® Energy†† B12 Adult Gummies so I don't have to bring the full bottle.
7. Invest in a portable charger: This thing has saved my life!  I don't feel chained to the walls at airports anymore, and with so many airlines having free Wi-Fi or free movies, I can entertain myself on the plane.

8. Change up outfits with jewelry: Something as simple as jewelry can change the look of a whole outfit.  From day to night, take a top from casual to dressy with barely any suitcase space!
9. Take advantage of a personal item: Don't forget, when you carry on bags, you get a small suitcase and a personal items.  This can be a small backpack, laptop case, camera bag, or purse.  Stuff more stuff in there!

10. Re-wear pieces: I am all about wearing the same one or two pieces all weekend.  Change up the jewelry, jacket, and shoes for a whole new look!
How do you make the most of your space when you travel?

† These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure prevent any diseases. 
††Vitamin B12 supports cellular energy production in the body.†

Monday, November 27, 2017

Thanksgiving Long Weekending

I hope everyone had a happy a very happy Thanksgiving weekend!  We enjoyed the perfect combination of family, relaxation, beautiful weather, and, of course, food.  My boss surprised me with an afternoon of golf on Tuesday at one of the best courses in the country (yes, country), and that's where our mini vacation began!
What a beautiful afternoon at Yeamans Hall Club - if anyone in your family knows golf, I swear they'll know this one.  It was just stunning!
On Wednesday, we had a great relaxing day around the city before Thanksgiving.  We got some fresh air and exercise, had a nice, light meal at Queen Street Grocery, and finally tried the seasonal latte at Black Tap Coffee.  Seriously, the sweet potato pie latte tasted just like it.  It's finally starting to look and feel like fall in South Carolina - who says Charleston doesn't get foliage?!
On Thanksgiving, we didn't leave the house - haha!  We started the day with a cheese board and the parade (all from Trader Joe's - I need to share my favorite products here soon!), continued with a turkey supper, all the fixings and football, and by dinner, we had turkey soup with homemade noodles (recipe here)
After Thanksgiving was Black Friday.  We had no intention of shopping and headed to the King Street Extension (the coolest new industrial/modern area on the northern part of the peninsula) to check out Workshop and Edmund's Oast Brewing.  We love the original Edmund's Oast location, and the brewery looked fantastic, too.  The whole open air space between the two is great, and we made sure to grab some of their most recent canning to bring home.  We decided to head up to the outlets to see how the sales were, and, of course, I got sucked in my Loft and J. Crew.  I might have bought these pants in four colors - I go all out when I find pant I don't need to hem (here are the same ones in regular length for the non-vertically challenged) and a few tops like this one for work.  If that wasn't enough, we wanted a little more misery and went to Best Buy.  I still had my Galaxy S6 from almost 3 years ago, and even worse, Mike had an S5, so we both upgraded to S8s!  The edge screen feature is so cool, and the camera is fantastic.  The photo of Shadow below is the first photo I ever took with it.  Now I just need to buy a cute case - this one or this one?  
Saturday and Sunday were spent outside and relaxing: on the golf course and down at Folly, respectively.  The weather was perfect, and it was such a relaxing way to end the weekend. 
Good luck getting back to the grind this week, friends!

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Christmas Card Favorites

Happy almost-Thanksgiving!  I'm so excited for a long weekend filled with family and food.  After stuffing my face, while I'm relaxing on the couch, watching all my favorite holiday specials on Thursday, I usually take some time to order our Christmas cards.  I've rounded up a bunch of my favorites, and I thought I'd share these styles with you... maybe for your own shopping, or maybe just to help me.  So, please let me know your favorite!

Updated 11/27: If you're looking to shop Minted.com, they are having a Cyber Monday 25% off everything sale through 11/18 at 8am using code CM2017
These can all be personalized for your state!

I'm also obsessed with this wrapping paper - Charleston doors are my favorite!

Does anyone know of any holiday card link-ups happening next month?  If not, is anyone interested in hosting one with me?

Have a happy turkey day!

Monday, November 20, 2017

Weekending on Kiawah

Happy Thanksgiving week!  I am so ready for a long weekend with family, but before all the chaos and busyness of the holiday, we had the best weekend out on Kiawah Island.  I had my organization's annual gala on Friday, and that always ends in a relaxing weekend on Kiawah.  We played golf, saw 20+ gators during our round (including a nest of babies!), walked the beach, did some (window) shopping (hello new Lilly styles like this alpaca and this chimp pattern), and, of course, ate a ton of our favorite food at Ryder Cup Bar and Java Java.
And because relaxing is exhausting, we stopped at Waffle House on the way home for some greasy goodness and got home on Sunday and did absolutely nothing all day (except throw this dinner in the crockpot).  I hope everyone enjoys a great short week - linking up with Biana today for Weekending

Friday, November 17, 2017

DIY Pumpkin Centerpiece

I've always loved flower arranging.  When I was younger, my mom taught me how to arrange evergreens for our window boxes, and I would make little pine boxes for teachers and neighbors.  Last year, I made 50+ arrangements for my gala at work, and this year, I decided to take aim at the pumpkin arrangements I've seen all over Pinterest.
We don't decorate a ton for Halloween at our house (here's what we did this year) - we save all our holiday spirit for Christmas - but we do always get a few pumpkins.  And, yeah, I totally jumped on the stacking-pumpkin bandwagon.  I love all the shapes and colors.  We still have them outside for Thanksgiving, but I swiped one for this project.  Trader Joe's has some beautiful flowers right now, so I picked up a few bouquets and decided to make my own Thanksgiving centerpiece.
What you'll need: a pumpkin, an assortment of fall flowers with extra greenery for filler (I used green hypericum and eucalyptus), oasis (wet foam), 2-4 wooden skewers, scissors
Here's how:
1. Cut your oasis to fit on top of the pumpkin, so that it covers all but 2-3 inches around the pumpkin.
2. Stick the skewers into the pumpkin so that they stick out as high as the oasis.
3. Soak the oasis in water and press it onto the skewers.
4. Trim the edges of the oasis into a more rounded shape.
5. Start arranging flowers from the bottom, cutting the stems so they slide all the way into the middle of the oasis. 
6. Alternate different flowers, turning the arrangement constantly, to make sure all of the oasis is covered. 
There you have it!  I can't wait to have all of these beautiful colors on our table for Thanksgiving next week!
Hover over the photo below and click on the light green "P" to pin this DIY!

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