Friday, July 29, 2016

Thoughts For Friday

TGIF.  This weekend we have lots of fun stuff going on.  My parents are in town, Matt is in a fishing tournament and we have a party Saturday afternoon.  

On Tuesday night we had our girl's supper club.  We usually rotate houses but decided during the Summer just to meet out somewhere.  We tried out Barsa and loved it.  All the tapas were delicious and this was the best paella I have ever had.  A great spot for wine and nibbles.  I loved their outdoor patio area where we ate.
They also had a very tasty cheese and meat platter where you choose what cheeses and meats you prefer.
What I wore:

Who else is hooked to the Bachelorette?  I love JoJo and think she is so cute.  Her hair always looks so perfect. 
Who are y'all pulling for Robbie or Jordan.  I feel pretty sure she will chose Jordan he has seemed like her favorite from the beginning.  I feel like if she chooses him though it won't last.

I found the cutest red dress at Madewell now on sale.  Size down as it runs on the large side, I am in a size XS.  It is a great dress for now and into Fall.  
Available  HERE and HERE

The kids and I hit up Citadel Mall this week.  Every time I go there I am amazed it is still open, it is the saddest mall ever.  I still don't understand why Charleston doesn't have a good mall.  The only redeeming aspect is the photo booth.  We had a blast taking pictures.

Last night we had dinner over at my parent's place since they were in town.  We love the deck at their condo.  The marsh view is so pretty.

Outfit Details: 
My off shoulder blouse is currently 40% off, no code needed.  I am wearing a size small.
I have been very diligent about my diet all week.  I have been working on post where I will share a sample menu of what I have been eating.  The main things I have tried to avoid are processed foods and carbs.  Last night we made our favorite cauliflower tacos and used lettuce instead of flour shells.  They were actually so good wrapped in lettuce I didn't even miss the shells.
Next I want to try out cauliflower nachos.  These look amazing.

I have been on a major reading kick lately.  Below are a few books I have read over the past few months.  For the most part they are all pretty light and easy Summer reads. The Nightingale was heavy but such a good story.  Any recommendations of what to read next?


I have been kind of obsessed with taking videos of the kids lately.  I feel like they are growing up so fast and I want to remember these sweet ages.  Lately Frances Moon keeps telling me she is not a baby and I had to record it.
Don't miss out on the Serena and Lily Tent Sale!  Everything is 40-75% off.  Scroll through to see my favorites.  There are some really awesome deals on bedding especially.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Artist Crush | Kerry Steele

Happy Thursday Friends!  My parents get in town tonight and I can't wait for a fun weekend with them.  Today I want to showcase an artist that I am loving.  If you are not familiar with Kerry Steele I am certain you are going to fall in love with her art like I did.  

I first found Kerry via instagram.  What did we do before instagram ?? Her instagram account is @kerrysteeleart,  and I highly recommend following her. Kerry shares her new work so it is fun to get a sneak peek of what she is currently working on.  I silently stalked her art for awhile on instagram.  Then Kerry emailed me saying she was wanting to move to Charleston, so we bonded over that!  A few months later she and her husband did move down to Charleston from Richmond.   She now has a studio and is painting over at Redux- which is the coolest space if you have never been. 

A few pieces from her Portfolio, which are all equally amazing. 

I stopped by her studio at Redux a few weeks ago to chat and pick up a commissioned piece she did for us.  I was blown away by all her current work.  I snapped a few pictures while I was in her studio.  It was so cool to see where she works.  I was really drawn to her current color palette.   I love the pinks and blues.  


This is my painting that Kerry did for us.  Can you tell I am just a little excited:)   

Most of the pieces from Kerry's studio pictured above are available on Kerry's site.  She also does commissions which is what Matt and I did.  The commission process was really neat.  Kerry and I emailed at first and I showed her examples of her work that I was drawn too.  Then Kerry came to my house with a stack of paint chip cards.  We then talked colors and what I liked and didn't like.  She used the paint chips to match my wall color, couch, and pillows so it all goes together perfectly! 

It really looks perfect in the space and was just what we wanted!!  I had a little photo bomber who wanted in on this picture.

A close up of our painting.  The colors just make me happy every time I look at it.

Kerry has graciously offered you guys 25% off orders of $100 or more from her site.  Use code DESIGN25! 
You can view all her current work HERE. 

I am lusting after one of her figure paintings next.  These are all beyond gorgeous.  I would love one of these in our bedroom.  


She even has a line of clutches and ties made out of her artwork.  These would make amazing gifts!

kerry steele

You can also find Kerry's art at the following  locations:

Anne Neilson Fine Art - Charlotte NC
Gregg Irby Gallery - Atlanta GA
​The Corner gallery - Norfolk VA

Serena and San Francisco CA

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

The Ultimate Tomato Salad + OOTD + Home on Sale

I have been obsessed with tomatoes this Summer.  I found a booth at the Farmer's Market and the guy has like 20 different varieties of heirloom tomatoes.  I have loved trying them all.   I have not found one heirloom varietal I don't like.   This salad can be made with any tomatoes but I like using the heirlooms because the colors are so vibrant and gorgeous.  The dressing and fried almonds take this salad to whole new level.  That combined with the ripe tomatoes and fresh herbs make for one amazing salad.   I also learned something new from this recipe, that soaking onions in ice cold water makes them not as strong.  A trick I will be using often because sometimes they can be over powering and if you soak them they are not.  This salad is a must try this Summer.  Just try not and eat the whole platter, I had a hard time restraining myself! 

||  H E I R L O O M  T O M A T O   S A L A D || 
adapted via Food and Wine Magazine

- 1/2 cup sliced almonds
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 garlic clove minced
- 1/4 red wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- salt and pepper
- 2 lbs mixed heirloom tomatoes, sliced
- 1/3 cup thinly sliced red onion, soaked in ice water for 10 minutes
- 1 jalapeno, minced
- 1/4 cup torn mint leaves
- 1/4 torn fresh basil

In a medium skillet, cook the almonds in oil over low heat stirring occasionally until slightly browned.  Strain the oil through a fine sieve into a bowl.  Lay the almonds on a paper towel and sprinkle with salt.  

Immediately whisk the garlic into the warm oil and let cool slightly.  Then whisk in lime juice, red wine vinegar, and sugar.  Season with salt and pepper.  

Spread the tomatoes on a baking sheet or paper towel and sprinkle with salt.  Let stand 5 minutes.

Drain the soaked onions and pat dry.  Scatter half the almonds on a platter then top with tomatoes.  Drizzle with the dressing and top with onion, jalapeno, mint, basil and remaining almonds.


I finally had some time to peruse the Nordstrom home sale selection.  There are some really great deals still left.   This sale ends August 8th, so only a few days to shop.  

I love this round wooden board for entertaining.  
It is the perfect size for a small happy hour nibble.

It also comes in a long oval version.  These make such great gifts at around $25 a piece. 

We have this indoor/outdoor rug in Sterling's room and it is the best.  Easy to clean because you know how messy boys can be!  

A few other favorites

home sale

Abstract Art | 400 Thread Count Sheets | Cooler Bag | Gold Glasses | Rug 
Turkish Towels | Wooden Board | Wooden Salad Bowl | Kiss Art 
Rug | Pom Pom Throw | Leopard Rug | Candle | Ombre Bowls
Champagne Glasses | Basket | Rug

Last Night I had Supper Club with a few of my best girlfriends. This dress is an oldie but a goodie 3 years later.  I bought this before I had Frances Moon and still love it.  It is also a great non-maternity, maternity dress because it is so loose.  I wore it often while I was pregnant with Frances and then passed it along to my sister and sister-in-law to borrow while they were pregnant.  Now it is back to me and I am loving it for the Summer.  It is super light weight and airy, perfect for these hot days we keep having.   It is under $100 and comes in 15 color options.  Sizing wise it runs TTS, I am in a size 4.

I also had a few questions about what bra I wear with this dress and I wear this one, it is nice because it has no back.   You can also wear a regular strapless one you just have to make sure the back is pulled down so it doesn't show.  This style is my go-to regular strapless bra.

Dress | Sandals | Necklace on sale in bronze color

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Style Files Vol 12 | $27 Blouse and The Best High Waisted Workout Pants

I know it is beyond hot outside (like crazy hot here- hello pool again today!) but I wanted to share a Fall outfit because it is all part of the Nordstrom Anniversary sale which ends in a week. 
 I have to admit as much as I love Summer I can't wait for some cool, crisp Fall air.  

I mentioned this blouse last week and y'all for $27 its a must have for Fall or now.  I paired mine with jean shorts and sandals the other day and I know I will wear it with jeans often this Fall.  The blouse is very light weight so it is a great transitional piece.   I am tempted to get the black I love my green one so much.  It runs TTS, I am wearing a small.  
It comes in 4 other colors besides green.  

I have become newly obsessed with hats.  They are the best for bad hair days.  This one is great for now and into the Fall.
It also comes in gray and black, I especially love the gray.  It is only $19 right now.  A great price if you want to try out the hat trend.
If you like a more rigid hat and not quite as floppy,  this one is on sale for $28.  It comes in 3 color options.

These jeans are selling out fast with only a few select sizes.   They run TTS.  I love the frayed bottoms.  

I also love these gray jeans for Fall.  A great color that you could dress up or down.

These sold out in many of the colors on sale but a few options are still available.  I like this particular style because of the fit, they don't slide down your face and they stay put.  I also think they are flattering on most face shapes. 
They are also available in a few new colors for Fall, although these colors are not on sale.
I love the blue and leopard ones.

You can shop this look below:

I mentioned on instagram yesterday I started a new diet and exercise plan.  After a very indulgent summer I need to shed a few pounds.  I am working on a post soon to share what I am eating and my exercise routine.  I did want to share these workout leggings I bought from the sale because they are selling out fast.   I like that they are high waisted, they suck in all my extra flab!   Sizing wise I went with a small.  I know some Zella can run the small side but these are TTS.

You can shop all the Zella on sale HERE

My green version is also on sale in this fun print.

This pair is not reduced but I love the black and white pattern! 
I am loving all these fun patterns and the little cut out detail on the legs.  This style comes in 4 pattern options. 

I tend to like just solid color tanks to workout in and this style is now reduced.  It would pair great with any of the leggings.

Thanks to Nordstrom for partnering on this post! 
Photos by Athena Crofts