Monday, October 15, 2012

Shopping For Boys It Ain't Easy!

When I first found out I was having a boy my first thought was what the heck am I going to dress a boy in?  I know a thing or two about dressing girls but boys I didn't even know where to begin.  When Sterling was young I loved to dress him in all things traditional like bubbles and jon-jons.  Now that he is older I feel like he looks silly in that stuff now.  He no longer looks like a baby and has really morphed into a little man the past few months- a very opinionated young man at that, always wanting to choose his clothes for the day and of course it is usually not what I want him to wear!

I always thought I would continue to dress Sterling traditionally but I have actually started to like a more modern/urban look for my sweet boy.  Don't get me wrong I still love some traditional outfits and actually love to mix traditional pieces with edgier fun pieces (think jon-jons with bright green pumas).    I never thought I would gain so much pleasure from shopping for boy stuff but I really do!  I honestly sometimes like shopping for him more than me. 

For all you moms with little boys, you know it is hard to find cute stuff.  The stores are biased and always have way more stuff for girls than boys.   I always walk in stores and there are racks and racks of girl clothes and a tiny section for boys- not fair.   There are always cute clothes up to age two but after that I find it is hard to find a good selection most places.   Boys deserve to look cute too!

My go-to places to shop for cute Boy stuff are JCrew and Gap for basics, and Zappos for shoes/Hatley pieces.  I love that Zappos has free shipping and returns.   Locally,  I love Sugar Snap Pea for Tea Collection and other great play clothes. Any other great sites I am missing out on?

Below are a few things we have purchased Sterling for Fall and I love them all.  You can't go wrong with any of the pieces and they are easy to mix and match.

Little Man Fall Shopping

J Crew Boys French Terry| Gap Button Shawl Pullover| JCrew Long Sleeve Ringer Tee| JCrew Winter Fleece|
Gap Colored Skinny JeansTea Super Side Stripe Pants| JCrew Camp Sweatpant| Tea Collection Knit Playware Pants

I am kind of a shoe hoarder and love to buy shoes for Sterling which is funny because I rarely buy shoes for myself.  The shoes below are his line-up for fall and they are all in pretty heavy rotation.   Sterling is obsessed with his Minnetonka slippers and wants to wear them to bed everynight!  The Pumas and Converse are daily staples.  The Minnetonka Boots and Wallabees are favorites of mine (Rachel Zoe even likes the Minnetonka boots for her son Skylar).

Shoes For Little Man

 Converse High-Tops| Minnetonka Chukka Moccasin BootsHunter Rainboots
Puma Whilrwind V| Minnetonka Pile Lined SlippersClarks Wallabee

Below are a few miscellaneous items we love.  Sterling has the Hatley dinosaur raincoat and adores it.  I swear the first drop of rain and he insists he needs his rainboots and raincoat.   I swear by the Hatley pajamas too.    I love all things Patagonia.  Last year Sterling went through a weird phase where he wanted to wear socks on his hands all the time so I bought him the Patagonia Mittens to replace the socks, worked like a charm.  He still loves the mittens.

Misc Little Man

Oh and because I can't resist,  how adorable is this picture from our Halloween playgroup Friday?  My Spiderman was in full effect!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Thoughts For Friday

TGIF.  Happy Weekend.  This has been a long week since my sweets has been sick but he is on the mend!  We have a Halloween playgroup party this afternoon that my little Spiderman is so excited to attend.  No other big weekend plans other than hanging with my sister and enjoying some quality family time.

Sterling's big boy is almost done.  I know I keep teasing you but I don't want to show pictures of the whole room til it is complete.  I am anal like that.  Here is our newest addition for his bed.  I used a local company called O'Connor for the monogramming and they did the best job ever!

The last thing I want for Sterling's room is a cool light fixture. I really, really want a Sputnik.  How cool would that look in a kids room?  I am on the search for a decent priced one.

I finally tested out the top knot this week.  I thought I looked cute but Sterling's exact words were "Mama why is there a pumpkin on your head? "  Top Knot Major Fail.  May not do it again.  Plus my hair is so fine and thin I felt like it looked stupid.

Looking for a cute shift dress?  Check out these ones at Old Navy.  I swear Old Navy has really stepped up their game lately.  The first pattern really reminds me of a DVF pattern.  Such a steal.

I just picked up the book Wild From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail .  I had read several great reviews (my bestie Oprah recommended it, so it must be good) about it and was interested to see if it was good.  It is different from what I typically read but I am really enjoying it.  I am halfway through and keep wanting to read more.  It is very well written, I highly recommend.

I have totally been into the show The New Normal.  Anyone else watching?  It is a cute sitcom and I love the two guys that play the gay couple.  Also it has made me come around and like Miss Nene again.  Check it out its pretty funny.

 Matt and I have had a few tiffs this week.  Ever have weeks where you just argue about stupid little things often? It was that kind of week for us.  Had to include this ecard because it is so true.

And because Matt tells me I complain too much and it is something I am truly working on, this quote really resonated with me.

Have a glorious weekend my sweet friends!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Estate Sales: I'm Dishing all my Secrets.

I have been going to Estate sales with my mom for as long as I can remember.  You might be wondering what the difference between an Estate Sale and a Yard Sale is.  Well an estate sale is where everything in the house is for sell and you can walk through the home looking at everything whereas Yard sales are usually just items placed in the front yard.  I am not dissing yard sales but Estate sales are so much better.

If you are wondering how to find estate sales the best spot is to look in your paper. I know in Charlotte and Charleston there are companies that put on most of the Estate Sales and you can get on their email list.  They will email you prior to the sale with the location and pictures of the items for sale.  I am on the list here in Charleston and I get weekly emails.  The sales usually start on Fridays and last thru the weekend.  It is key to get there Friday or good stuff gets scarfed up.  It is also important to get there and get in line before the start of the sale because sometimes they only let a certain number of people in.  If you are not in the first group in you are just missing out on everything.

Estate sales can be overwhelming.  People are usually lined up outside way before they start and then it is crazy town once the doors open.  I love going with my mom because we can split up and divide and conquer.  Big tip is to bring a bag with you.  I always bring one of my recycled grocery store bags that way I can throw items in there quickly and keep looking.  Without a bag your arms will get full fast.  I have seen people carrying plastic bins to cram stuff in as well. 

 There are a few main things I look for at Estate Sales (now that I am writing this,  I am thinking is it a good idea to share all my secrets?  Oh well here you go, the wine is making me feel generous today.

Many estate sales have some great old vintage jewelry that you can score for cheap.  If if a necklace is broken you can easily fix it when the prices are so cheap.  Think outside the box.  Brooches can be remade into necklaces and rings resized.  Here are a few vintage items I scored two weeks ago for a grand total of $15.  I love vintage jewelry because it is so unique.

I looped the large pendant on a chain I already owned and have been rocking the heck out of it.

Two other necklaces I found at an estate sale downtown for $20.  Plus I also scored the Lucite tray for $5!

The necklace on the right is made out of ivory and such a cool piece.

{Dishes & Serving Utensils}
Estate sales are a great place to find random kitchen dishes.  A few weeks ago I found this set of vintage white cookware that you can use for individual souffles and pasta dishes.  Ina gave me the idea for that.  I got 8 dishes for $12.   I am always on the lookout for classic or vintage white dishes because they can match any other serving pieces.

I like to collect Sterling Serving Utensils for entertaining as well.  Here is another score, $2 for this great pair of old servers.  They need to be polished so don't be judging my tarnished spoons.  Look past the fact that are tarnished.  Silver is so easy to polish and clean up.

Estate sales are filled with incredible glasswares.  Glasses are my weakness.  I think because I love to entertain and booze it up I love to have cute glasses.  Even if it is an odd number of glasses it is still a score.  When I entertain I love to mix it up and use different glasses.  I found these adorable star glasses for $10.  There were only 3 which probably steered most people away but it doesn't bother me and honestly Matt and I use two of them all the time.

I also love to find pretty pitchers to use for mixed drinks when entertaining.  This beauty was $1!!  I mean it cost less than a bottle of coke.  

Two other things I found recently, vintage crystal ice bucket and martini shaker.  Both were $4.

I am always on the lookout for good coffee table books at Estate Sales.  Normally the books are super cheap at the sales.  Nowadays great coffee table books run $50+ a book and you can usually find them for $10 or less at estate sales.   Don't judge a book by its cover (literally)- I always remove those cheap paper covers.  I check the spines and covers underneath to make sure they are in good shape.  I look for books that interest me and that match the color scheme in my den.  I found all three of these ivory books at estate sale.  And actually now that I think about it my mom found the brass seashell at an ES as well!

{Concrete Potters} 
Concrete potters can cost an arm at a leg but usually they are dirt cheap at ES.  You may want to bring a man with big muscles to carry though because they can get heavy!  I know my sad pot is empty I am in the process of revamping my potters for fall.

{Random Accessories}
Estate sales are the perfect spot to score random decorative accessories for your home.   My mom found these adorable foo dogs for me at an Estate Sale in Charlotte.  Love them.

Other items to look for are Artwork, and Furniture.    Keep in mind the furniture can always be recovered or painted if you like it and the price is right!  Sometimes you can find smocked kids clothes as well.  And occasionally you can find legit purses.  True story my sister went to an estate sale and it was at the home of an ex-athlete in Charlotte and she score a Louis Vuitton Garment Bag.  Had it checked out it and was 100% authentic.  Moral of the story you can find great stuff at these sales.   Just remember not every sale is great in fact most aren't, you just have to dig and know what to look for.  I leave plenty of sales empty handed.  But it is the thrill of a good find that keeps me coming back!  So get on the estate sale bandwagon you will be glad you did- especially since I just shared all my secrets!

btw this is so unrelated but Sterling just said to me "Mama you are my favorite girlfriend."  Melted my heart.
and thanks to my girl Ashley who suggested I write this post!!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Greek Shrimp

I am sure many of you are already familiar with the food blog, Dinner a Love Story.  I wasn't until I stumbled upon the cookbook at the library last week.  I checked it out and have spent the last week devouring it.  It is filled with so many great recipes and personal stories.  I am considering buying it because I have enjoyed it so much.  Only downside- no pictures for all the recipes.  I am a visual girl and I like to see pictures of what I am going to cook.  I still loved the book and best part most of the recipes are easy because they have two kids.   I love the importance they place on family meals and cooking/eating together with your kids.

Greek Shrimp was the first recipe I decided I wanted to try out of the book and I was not disappointed. It is only a few ingredients and so easy to whip together!   It would have been even easier if I had requested my shrimp to  be peeled and deveined.  Why do I always do this myself when they will do it in the store for you??
  We served ours over white rice (white for my man who turns his nose at anything brown in the pasta/rice family).   I didn't use hardly any rice for my bowl and it was delish just by itself.  It would be great with just a big piece of French Bread to dip in it or served over pasta.  The next night we used the leftovers to make Greek Shrimp Flatbread Pizzas.  So you are basically getting two recipes in one!  Enjoy!

{Greek Shrimp}
-1lb Shrimp Peeled and Deveined
-1 28 oz can Tomatoes, Drained
-2 garlic cloves minced
-4-6 oz feta
-2 tablespoons chopped parsley
-juice of half a lemon

To make: Preheat oven to 425°F. Saute two minced garlic clove in olive oil in an ovenproof skillet set over medium heat. Add one 28-ounce can of tomatoes (drained, very important), and stir, breaking up tomatoes. Cook for about 10 minutes. Nestle in a pound of shrimp and cook until shrimp starts to turn pink all over, about 3 minutes. Sprinkle two-ish handfuls of feta on top and bake in your preheated oven for about five minutes until cheese is melty. Remove from oven, add chopped parsley and the juice of  half a lemon. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012


Holy crap this Gelato is amazing.  I picked up the Carmel Cookie Crunch flavor and then proceeded to eat half the container.  Please go buy some.  Next flavors on my list to try are Sea Salt Carmel, Coffee Chocolate Chip, and Toasted Almond.  Any other recs?

If you have never tried on the Minne pant at JCrew you are seriously missing out.  This is one of the most flattering pairs of pants I have tried on for several reasons.  
One: It has no pockets which means no bulges, only a side zipper.  
Two: The pants are made with a flattering two way stretch fabric.  This means they suck you and stretch at the same time.  
Three:  All the colors are great for fall.  Plus they are great for work or play.
This is a great pant option if you don't want skinny jeans and did I mention they are comfortable??  
The Vibrant Flame color is one sale right but I really love the dark green!

After seeing this blouse in my Marie Claire I knew I needed it - because duh I certainly don't already have enough blouses.  It is on sale right now and I promise it looks so cute on.  The neutral colors are perfect to pair with colored jeans. 

I am debating between  this light and a sputnik for the main light in Sterling's Big Boy room.  I love both but I love the price of this one eve more!  Such a steal.

I have really been into layering necklaces lately and this necklace is perfect for that.  It would be great for everyday wear alone or layered with long chains.  I love how sweet and delicate it is.  If you have more than one kid it would be so cute to get two with each child's initial.  It is a steal at $75.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Weekend Happenings

Good Monday Morning Friends.  Or not really in our house,  you see my sweet baby is sick and we are off to the doctor this AM.  Hoping for some meds and a quick recovery for him- and of course I am praying we all don't catch it! 
This weekend I was pretty much a single mom since Matt was gone all day at the game Saturday (he left at 10 and rolled home at 4am)  and then pretty much incapacitated Sunday due to all the fun he had at the game- if you know what I mean!  It was not a bad weekend just didn't feel like a true weekend since I was solo most of the time.

A few highlights:
Two beauties that I have been eyeing arrived on my doorsteps this weekend.  The Tom Ford Coffee Table book which I have been wanting forever.  This is a seriously gorgeous coffee table book.  I am so darn happy to add it to my collection.

And for my cookbook collection: The Sprouted Kitchen. I have really been trying to eat healthier and I can tell such a difference. I have more energy and just feel better about myself. This cookbook came highly recommended. It is filled with some amazing looking healthy recipes I can't wait to try.

This recipe from the cookbook was featured in Bon Appetit.  How delish does this Ranchero Tostada look?  It is top on my list of must make dishes out of the cookbook.

I finally busted out some fall colored jeans.

Saturday I did manage to get a few solo hours thanks to my in-laws.  I met up with my sister in law and a good friend for some afternoon wine and tasty chaurcuterie at BIN152.  All you locals and peeps visiting Charleston,  this wine bar is my favorite.  The owner is so knowledgeable and they have the best selection of cheeses and meats.  Check out our platter.

Here is what I wore for our ladies afternoon:

I have to admit I never thought I would be a bandage skirt type of girl.   I ordered this skirt while I was pregnant with Sterling- stupid idea,  I could not fit my fat ass in it while pregnant, but now I love it.  It really sucks you in (like spanx) and looks so cute with looser blouses.  Get on the bandage bandwagon for realz.  I have the Charcoal color but it comes in several different options.

And I will say it again the Joie Marlo Blouse is perfection.  I want one in every color.  I wear mine all the time.

Sunday Matt rallied long enough to hit up the Pumpkin Patch.  Sterling was so excited.  We came home with 4 pumpkins!  I think we may do a painting project with a few of the smaller ones.

We tried to get a family picture and of course this is how it turned out. Typical.

Hope you all had a great weekend!

Friday, October 5, 2012

What to Know My Make-Up Secrets?

Today I am over at Katie's lovely blog Everyday Southernista (Beauty Made Easy) sharing all my beauty secrets from Cheapie Drug Store finds to my favorite splurges.   If you have never read Katie's blog you are missing out, my friends.  She interviews some fabulous people and gets them to spill all their beauty secrets.  I spent a long time reading past interviews and making my next Make-up Shopping list based on others tried and true favorites.  Please check out my interview HERE, I promise you be glad you visited Katie's blog!

And for fun here is a sneak peek of some everyday favorites of mine.  Head HERE to see the rest and read all my juicy make-up and beauty secrets!