10.30.2014

THE Most Perfect Fall Boot



Sweater via SheInside // Sunnies here // Scarf via Heart & Home Collection // Jeans via Destination Maternity // Socks via Target (in leopard) // Try to Explain Boots in whiskey c/o Riffraff // purse (Prada Saffiano Tote in caramel), similar here and here


I'm sure you've heard all you care to hear about boots thus far this fall. (Or, maybe you're like me and can't get enough. Either way.) But girls, these are just too darn good not to share.

My hand to the heavens, these are my most favorite boots I've ever, ever owned, (and I've owned eleventy million.)


33 week bump problems: when your necklace won't hang straight down because your baby belly is in the way. 

I also find it coincidental that these are called the Try to Explain boot because it's hard to put into words what makes them so great, only that the subtle heel, rich color and soft leather check off every one of my qualifications when it comes to boot-buying.

Oh, and at the price point they're listed, you can still afford to buy groceries this week. Holla.




Take a gander at the Try to Explain boots and all the other cute shoe offerings available at Riffraff. Oh, and if you do decide to make a purchase, use the code BLONDE to get yourself a nifty 10% off.



10.29.2014

Video Tutorial: {How I Curl My Hair}

As promised last week, I filmed a video tutorial of my hair curling technique for you ladies. Nothing fancy, just a basic video of me...well...using a curling iron.

A few things before you watch:

1) As I say in the video, I think the way my finished style looks has more to do with the way my hair stylist cuts my hair than anything. If you have long hair, (my length or longer), I'd suggest asking your stylist for some long(ish) layers to help lighten up the weight of your hair in the front, which will help in the styling process.

2) It's all about the iron. If you haven't shelled out the $40 for a Hot Tools curling iron yet, do yourself a favor and make the purchase. Hot Tools just makes a better iron.

3) I'm not a fan of the curling wands. I tried a friend's a couple of times and I prefer the old style with the clamp. This would work just fine with a wand, though.



Products mentioned in the video







You can find a complete list of the other products I use on my hair, including shampoo and conditioner, on this page.

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Another email topic that frequently comes up: baby bangs and baby sideburns and how I dealt with this strange postpartum phenomenon.

I'll start by saying, I didn't avoid it, (and am still dealing with it a bit), but I didn't get it too badly. I think one thing was instrumental in that: Davines MELU Heat Protecting Shield. I used this stuff religiously both before and after Caroline was born. It helped to put a halt to breakage and speed up the re-growth process.


(A lot of people think the short postpartum baby hairs are from breakage alone, but it's actually new hair coming in and, sometimes, subsequently breaking off due to heat styling. See? Learning new things daily. That's what we do here on this highly educational blog.)

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Thanks for watching me curl my hair and thanks for reading this blog. It shocks the heck outta me at how many of you take the time to read this little piece of the internet daily and I sincerely appreciate that.


10.28.2014

A Beautiful Bundle of Fall: {DIY featuring The Neat Nook!}


Photo is property of The Neat Nook blog


Hi, girls! You all are in a for a treat today from one of my very favorite creative people and personal mentors, Kate from The Neat Nook!

I have worked with Kate for the past few years at the PR firm where I'm employed. Today, we are both copywriters at the agency, as well as bloggers : ) Kate recently took her decorating, organizing and writing skills and funneled them into The Neat Nook, a resource for all things creative, beautiful and inspiring.


I'm going to stop rambling and introduce you to your next favorite blog, The Neat Nook.

Take it away, Kate!

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First, I’d like to say how incredibly honored I am to be a guest on Leslie’s blog! As you all realize, she’s beyond amazing, which left me beyond excited at the chance to post a little something special.

I know how much you all love beautiful things. Who doesn't? So I wanted to share a project that will help you dress up your entryway (or special nook in your home) that’s beautiful, simple and affordable. That’s the trifecta of ALL decorating projects, IMO.



All you’ll need:

       3-4 bunches of wheat
       A pretty vase with a fairly small opening at the top
       Tan rubber band or string
       Scissors
       Fabric ribbon for your fabulous finish

Here’s what you’ll want to do:

1.   Neatly gather all of the wheat into one bunch. The amount of wheat you’ll need will depend on the size of the opening of your vase.

2.   Secure the bundle with a rubber band or string. I used raffia because I had some handy. A rubber band works great, too.

Photo from The Neat Nook

3.   Next is what I call the “fan & grab.” Twist the bundle from the middle, so the tips and tops fan out. I like to think this gives volume to your bouquet – kinda like what teasing does for your hair. Then squeeze the ends together so it will fit easily into your vase.

4.   Do a quick height check next to your vase. Cut the ends of the wheat, if needed.

5.   Place the wheat inside the vase, then fluff and arrange.

6.   Add a pretty bow around the vase to add some cuteness – and also hide the string or rubber band. Being from the south, I’m all about the bow. Make those babies big and proud. If you need help with this, I’ll have a quick lesson on my blog next week.

I mean, how simple is that? Have fun pulling this together, and I hope you’ll share pictures of how yours turned out. I also hope you’ll check out my blog at www.theneatnook.com for more ideas to make your life beautiful, organized and creative!


10.24.2014

Confessional Friday: {Link Up}

It's Friday and that, my friends, is never a bad thing. It's the time of the week where we dish, vent and spill. Ready to get to it? Me too.




1) I confess that it dawned on me yesterday that we only have about seven weeks of this pregnancy left...and I cried. I'm not sad that it's nearly over at all, (although I have really enjoyed it), but I think the reality of all the stuff I still have left to do just hit me like a ton of bricks. It occurred to me at 2:30 a.m. that I hadn't yet ordered Ainsley a car seat. This then sent me into a frenzy of thinking of all the other things I hadn't gotten her yet. (A changing pad for her dresser...that we still haven't ordered, either. Or the much-needed black-out curtains. Or a second baby monitor. Or new tubes for the breast pump.) And just like that, I was sitting at our breakfast table scrawling frantic lists until the wee hours of the morning.

And then I started to bawl because OH MY GOSH, WHEN WILL I FIND TIME TO CHRISTMAS SHOP? AND WHERE WILL WE CELEBRATE THANKSGIVING IF I CAN'T TRAVEL? AND I STILL DON'T HAVE AN OUTFIT FOR A WEDDING WE'RE ATTENDING IN THREE WEEKS...AND HOW BIG WILL THE BUMP BE THEN? WHAT IF I ORDER SOMETHING AND IT DOESN'T FIT?

You know, totally rational and very important thoughts to have in the middle of the friggin' night. (I believe they call this Losing One's Shiz.)

After a little more sleep and a good, strong cup of coffee this morning, all was right with the world again.

Besides, a pregnancy just isn't a pregnancy without at least one good hormone-filled meltdown.

2) I confess that I have been craving (and eating) frozen Eggo waffles...in their frozen state. No, I don't mean I crave the toasted or warmed ones, I mean I've been eating two of the whole grain waffs right outta the freezer every morning like a teething baby. Strangest and most absurd pregnancy craving to-date.

3) I confess that ne'er a day goes by that I don't embarrass myself in some form or fashion. We bought a more family-friendly car, (an SUV, actually), on Wednesday night and when the salesman handed me the keys to the new ride, I walked out the door and walked straight over to...my old car. I had gotten as far as opening the door when Stephen started laughing and brought it to my attention that we had to leave that one at the dealership. Good lord.

Alright, enough of that. I'm ready to hear your confessions this week. What have you got for me?

P.S. - Happy 30th birthday to the love 'o my life! Honey, you will always be the funniest, best-looking, most-Tebow-esque, most-Cutler-esque, most sarcastic, most charming and most enjoyable-to-be-around guy in the room. And, I'm proud to call you mine. Thanks for being born.




   

    An InLinkz Link-up
   

10.23.2014

Updates on Stuff You May Be Curious About

The fact that this post title ends in a preposition is going to drive me crazy, but it sounded too stuffy to title it "Updates on Stuff of which You May Be Curious". I just wanted to acknowledge that in writing because, well, I'm a wee bit tightly wound concerning grammar and such. 

Home Tour
I've been trying like the dickens to get our house assembled enough to take you guys on a home tour, but I just haven't had the time. I've been trying to wrap up things at work, get what's left of our things unpacked and stored in the attic, plan a first birthday party and a 30th birthday party (my husband's birthday - tomorrow!), begin Christmas shopping -- I'll be out of commission due to the C-section in the weeks leading up to, so I'm doing it now -- and basically just keep my head above water while I finish out this pregnancy. 

I'm still in search of art for the living room and kitchen, as well as a new comforter for the master bedroom because ours is shot. As soon as I can finish up those details and have a chance to take some photos, I'll let y'all come on in. I promise!

So, all that to say, our home tour may be a Christmas home tour (or winter home tour) instead of a fall one, but by golly, I'm determined to finally show y'all where we live. I love our little abode; we worked really hard for this house and I'm so proud of it.  

My MIL is going to help decorate it  for Christmas and she is a living, breathing, southern version of Martha Stewart, at least when it comes to holiday-i-fying a house. (However, she's never been to prison for insider trading. Do y'all remember when that happened to M-Stew? I still laugh about seeing tabloid photos of her in a prison jumpsuit, collecting pine cones out in the jail yard. I think her stint in the pokey made me love her more.)

Our Second Kid Will Have a Nursery, (or At Least A Crib and Bedding)
In other decorating news, Ainsley has a crib (!!) She won't be sleeping in a milk crate, after all ; ) We ended up going with a slightly different model than the Pottery Barn Taryn crib after we learned a different style converted into a larger toddler bed, (read: more miles out of one bed.) We are putting it together this weekend and I'm so excited!

I also just ordered bedding. This bedding. I love it and I'm pretty sure Ains will, too.



Hair Curling Video Tutorial
I filmed a hair curling how-to for you ladies. If you've got long hair, be sure to tune in late next week, (probably Thursday), and check it out! I think it would definitely work for shorter hair with a few modifications. I'm no pro, but the method I'll demonstrate works best for me.



I've updated my "Products I Love" page
If you've been unable to sleep due to wondering what kind of concealer I use, you can finally rest easy. On this nice little page, you'll find a complete list of the mess I use on my face and hair, as well as tools like my favorite curling iron and hair dryer. If you've been hankering to add to your make-up collection or hair product vault, check it out

And if not, it's sure to help you doze off if you've been battling insomnia. 

Please note: If you have questions about how I apply any of the products, please leave a comment at the bottom of the Products I Love page. I try to answer emails promptly, but these days, that's the best way to get a fast answer to your question. I'll reply back on the page, so look for a response within a few days.