Friday, August 26, 2016

Thoughts For Friday

Happy Friday Friends!  We survived week two back to school and are finally getting back into a good schedule/routine.  Sterling has his first spelling test today,  I can't believe all this is starting in first grade.  I helped him study last night and I think he is gonna do great- thank goodness he is a better speller than me:)

Wednesday I went out to dinner with a few of my best girlfriends to celebrate the first week of school.  We tried out Little Jack's Tavern.  I had heard rave reviews so I was excited to try it out and it did not disappoint.  Between the 4 of us we had the Chopped Salad, Artichoke Gratin, Roasted Veggie Salad, Tavern Burger and Crudites with Avocado Mouse.  The Crudites were so simple but so amazing.  They were drizzled with olive oil and thick sea salt.  Dipped in the avocado sauce it was the perfect combo.  I can't wait to try and make this at home.

I wore my new Mara Dress.  I just love the pastel colors.  I am wearing a size small it runs TTS.
I love this picture of me and my friend Krystine.  We were clearly excited for a night out.
All of us ladies.

Two new favorite accesories for Fall.

I am so excited because I just heard Narcos is coming out with season 2.  We just finished up Bloodline so this is perfect timing! 

My friend Jess who writes the blog Bare Beauty Blog just had her eco friendly home featured on My Domaine.  She did a wonderful job with the space using sustainable materials yet still keeping the historic charm of the house.  Speaking of how gorgeous is Jess?  If you don't follow her blog you should!  She has such great tips on clean beauty products and clean living.

I am currently working on Frances Moon's big girl room.  She is so ready for her big girl bed and keeps asking me when she gets to sleep in it.  She has even been napping in Sterling's bed while he is at school,  so I know she is ready!   I will be sad to take down her crib but I am happy because my sister in law is pregnant and she is going to use it!   I ordered a few things so far and this adorable unicorn lamp just arrived today.  
Frances is unicorn obsessed these days.  My sister in law gave her this unicorn purse and I think it may be her favorite accessory yet!  
My favorite McGuire Jeans are now out in a new gray distressed wash that is amazing.   I love the fit of these jeans and this color is so fresh for Fall.
I just started this book and it has immediately sucked me in.  I read almost 100 pages last night.  Download it if you want to read something inspiring and moving.  Glennon's  stories about motherhood, marriage and life in general are so funny and relatable. 

Have a fabulous weekend!  I'll be back tomorrow with some fun Saturday shopping deals! 

Thursday, August 25, 2016

14 Beauty Products I Can't Live Without

Today's post is all about Beauty! I wanted to share about my decision to become a Beauty Counter rep and a few Beauty favorites I am obsessed with lately.  

First up, BeautyCounter.  I have been blogging about this line for several years now and it just seemed like a natural step to become a rep.  I love every single BeautyCounter item I have ever tried, so you guys can know that the products I recommend to you will be tried and true favorites.  Over the past two years I have tried to make some small changes to my make-up and beauty routine by incorporating more clean and safe products and that is how BeautyCounter came into my life.  Now don't worry I am not going to be blogging about BeautyCounter all the time nor will it ever be the only product line I use.  That is why today I am sharing a mix of products some from BeautyCounter and some not.   I like to try and use a mix of several different lines and that won't ever change.   I will be sharing when new things come out, new favorites and any awesome deals that BeautyCounter runs.  I feel honored to be part of a company that is so forward thinking.  

Today I wanted to share my top 6 favorite BC Products and 8 other products I use everyday and truly love.

I replaced my Laura Mercier tinted foundation with this and never looked back.  It provides flawless coverage.   As far as products go, the ones that my skin absorbs the most like lotions and foundations  I try to keep really clean, the other stuff I am not quite as concerned about.  This won the Allure Beauty award last year too so you know I am not the only one loving it.  As far as coloring goes I use shade #2.

I do really recommend using the retractable brush with this.  I have mentioned it on here before but trust me it makes a difference.  I originally thought there was no way a brush would make a difference but it does, it makes your foundation look seamless, almost air brushed on.  I am hooked and always use this brush.  
I love the kid's set.  You can buy the items individually as well but I find I like having all 3.  
I worry about my kids more than myself so using this line on them was a no brainer.  The set contains body wash, shampoo and conditioner.  It smells really fresh and clean too.
 The lip sheer was the first ever Beauty Counter product I bought 2 years ago.  I bought it in the Twig shade and still use it today.  I now have a few other color favorites that include : petal, rose and coral, and scarlet is the perfect shade of red if you need one!  If I had to choose a favorite though it would be rose it is the perfect everyday pink.  I like that these can go on light and almost sheer or you can layer it for a darker lip.

One of my biggest skin problems is my under eye circles.  They are so bad.  I use this layered with Cle De Peau and it works miracles.  I apply this first then follow with the Cle De Peau and it provides killer coverage.  Color wise I use the light shade.  This pen is great for touch-ups too.
I have bad under eye circles and really dry skin, not a great combo.  I love this eye cream because I feel like it helps with both.  I apply this is the morning before I put on my make-up and at night as well.   As far as eye creams go it is not crazy expensive and a little bit goes a long way.

Now onto some other favorite lines I have been using and loving.  
I was introduced to Colleen Rothschild in April at a blog conference I attended and I have been hooked ever since.  Her products make me feel like I am at a spa.  They smell heavenly and work wonders.  They were gracious enough to offer a discount to my readers, use code DBDD20 to take 20% off any order for the next 7 days.

My favorite CR product is the detox mask.  I use it once a week and love, love, love it.  It is a blend of charcoal and French clay which helps detox the skin.  I usually put this on Monday night while I watch the Bachelor and let it sit about 20 minutes.  When you wash it off your skin will feel amazing!!
I never understood the hype about face oil until I started using it.  Now I swear my skin craves it.  This stuff lasts forever, a little goes a long way.  This oil smells amazing and really helps nourish and hydrate your skin.    I apply this first thing before my moisturizer in the morning.  Your skin will feel silky smooth after you use this.

I love this cream.  I use it day and night.  It not only smells amazing but it makes my skin feel heavenly.
I mentioned these during the Anniversary sale when I scooped up the trio.  A make-up artist used them on my skin once and I was amazed at how well they worked.  I use them for my concealer, they really help apply it smoothly and evenly.  Apparently using your fingers can cause wrinkles and these are gentler on your skin.  They easy to clean too with a little soap and water so you can keep reusing them.

I have been taking these for 3 months now and I swear they have made my hair thicker and fuller.  Even my mom commented last time she was down here that my hair looked fuller.  

After I posted my instastory saying I had not washed my hair in 5 days I had some requests to share what I use.  I only wash my hair about 2 times a week now thanks to this dry shampoo.  I have tried several dry shampoos but this one is hands down the best.  I also like that it helps conceal my roots as well. 
This stuff works miracles on tangly hair.  Frances and I both have really fine hair which means after we wash our hair it is always knotted up.   I use this spray every time I wash my hair and every time I wash Frances Moon's hair.  It makes it so easy to brush your hair when it is wet and it smells amazing.

I have been using coconut oil for several years to remove my make-up but these wipes are so much easier. They are great for traveling too.  They really get all my make-up off and make my under eye area feel soft and moisturized from the coconut oil.   I cut the wipes in half to make them last longer.  

Any other Beauty favorites I should try????

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Chopped Chinese Chicken Salad + Little Black Dress OOTD + Free Beauty Counter Mascara

Chopped salads, they are my jam.  I have been wanting to make a Chinese Chicken Salad since I saw Vicki on RHOC eating one- so so random I know.  But still it has haunted me and made me want to recreate one at home.  It did not disappoint.  I could not stop shoveling this down my throat.   If you plan to make this ahead just leave out the peanuts and crispy rice noodles until you are ready to eat because they will get soggy.  However mine set for awhile and I honestly didn't mind them soggy but it is better when they are crunchy.   

This would probably be amazing if you grilled or cooked your own chicken, but I am lazy in the meat department.  A rotisserie chicken is just so easy,  and so good,  and my kids will eat it too.

If you don't have a mandolin you need one in your life.  It makes shredding so easy.  I use mine all the time.  I have this one and love- it is also dishwasher safe!  I used it to shred the cabbage.  It gets it perfectly thin. 

The dressing is super light yet full of lots of flavor.  A little tip instead of always peeling and grating my own fresh ginger I buy it in a jar already minced and keep it in the fridge.  It is great for dressings and Asian dishes.  I found mine at Earthfare but I am sure other stores carry it. 
I am already dreaming about my leftovers today! 

 || C H O P P E D   C H I N E S E  C H I C K E N    S A L A D ||
adapted via Recipe Tin Eats

- 1 small head napa cabbage shredded
- 1/2 head red cabbage shredded
- 1 cup shredded carrots
- 3 green onions slices
- 1 rotisserie chicken chopped (I removed the skin)
- 1/2 red bell pepper thinly sliced in strips and then cut in half
- 1/2 cup chopped peanuts
- crispy rice noodles

- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 2 tablespoons peanut oil or canola
- 1 garlic clove minced
- 1.5 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
- 1 teaspoon sugar

Shred/chop cabbages and arrange in bowl.  Add chicken, green onions, bell pepper, and carrots.  Add the peanuts and crispy rice noodles very last.  

Whisk all dressing ingredients together.  Pour over salad and toss all together.  Enjoy!

So, I loved my red Anthro dress so much I bought the black and let me tell you it has been the best purchase ever.  I wore it 3 times in one week.  My mom even bought it too, although apparently my sister has already borrowed hers.  It is such a great versatile dress.  Looks cute casual with flip flops or dressed up with heels.  It is now back in stock in both red and black.  I am wearing a small for reference.  Trust me this will become your favorite dress quickly!  

Here is the red version.

I mentioned Friday that I have become a Beauty Counter rep- I plan to share more about that tomorrow and share some of my favorite beauty products I am loving from both Beauty Counter and other lines as well.  Today however I wanted to share that until midnight if you spend $75 on BC products you get a free mascara.  This is such a great deal as the mascara retails for $29.  What sets this mascara apart is that it doesn't contain any of the preservatives found in other mascaras like propylparaben, butylparaben, and butylated hydroxyanisole .   I have not tried it yet myself but I can't wait to.  I love all my other Beauty Counter products and have a feeling I will love this too.  If you have been wanting to try it now is a great time to get it free! 
If you need ideas of items to try in order to spend $75,  I love the Kids set, Touch Up Concealor, Lip Sheer, Tinted Moisturizer,  and Face Pads.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Style Files Vol 17 | Blouses Under $75

It is no secret I love a blouse.  It is probably my favorite item to buy and wear.  I am always in blouses paired with shorts or jeans.  It is my go-to daily outfit.  Today I wanted to share a few cute blouse options under $75.  

I love the ruffle front detail of this blouse and it comes in 7 color options.  I am always a sucker for this royal blue color though.  I think it is such a flattering shade on everyone. This blouse would be great for work paired with black slacks as well.  

The blouse runs slightly on the large side so if you are between sizes I recommend sizing down.  I am wearing an XS.  It is part of the Vince Camuto line at Nordstrom.  It has become one of my go-to favorite lines for affordable cute blouses and shoes!  
I also really love this flame color and the white.  The white would be such a great basic blouse.  You can't ever go wrong with white.

I bought these earrings over the summer and they are now out in some awesome Fall colors.  They are only $36!!  I like that they are not heavy at all and don't hurt your ears.
I am loving the gray ombre ones and pale pink.

I rounded up some other fabulous blouse options all under $75! 


Scroll through to shop them all:

You can shop my look below:

Thanks to Nordstrom for partnering on this post. 
Photography | Rick Dean Photography

Monday, August 22, 2016

Scenes From Our Weekend + Lily Pulitzer After Party Sale!

I hope everyone had a great weekend! 

First and foremost the Lily Pulitzer After Party Sale starts at 8am today!  There will be new items today and tomorrow!  I am hoping to snag a few goodies for Frances Moon!  
My personal favorite is the Elsa Blouse.  I have it in hot pink and love it.  I am hoping to get another color or pattern during the sale!  I am wearing an XS in this blouse I found that it runs on the larger side. 
I bought this dress over the Summer and just love the loose fit and embroidery.  Hopefully it is part of the sale!

I love the Lily Shifts for the little girls.  Some of my favorite dresses Frances owns!  These are top on my list of what I want to buy!

Friday my mom and I did a little shopping downtown.  
I got to see all the new fall Mara Hoffman at Finicky Filly and loved so much of it especially this dress.  I can't wait to wear this once the weather gets a bit cooler! 

Friday night we had happy hour with our next door neighbors.  I made mini caprese bites that were delish- this rose is also really good.

The kids just adore Rick and Gary, our next door neighbors.  That is Rick with Sterling he shoots my blog photos sometimes:)   Gary is pictured with Frances.

and I adore them too!

My mom found me some new end tables in Charlotte and brought them back for me.  We are slowly making progress in our den.  I am loving how it is all coming together.

Sterling went to the aquarium with our good friends Saturday so Frances and I went fabric shopping for my cane back chairs.  I picked up these samples at GDC Home.  

This was Sterling at the lego exhibit at the aquarium.  He had a blast!  I highly recommend for any locals or out of town visitors.  That shark is made out of all legos- how cool is that? 

The most delicious tomato sandwich with my Farmer's Market tomatoes. 

I met my girl Caycee for some afternoon wine.  We always love The Avondale Wine and Cheese bar.  They have this triple cream brie that is amazing and we also really loved the smoked olive oil! 
What I wore.  This is the same blouse I wore Friday night but in a different color.  They are my favorite off shoulder blouses.  Size down as they really run on the large side, I am wearing an XS.

Sunday Frances Moon and I went to church.  She really wanted to come sit with me instead of the nursery so I figured why not.  Once we were inside she goes "What is this place?"  I relied it's church.  She then says " well it sure doesn't seem very fun." haha!

Pool time that afternoon after we dealt with Roto Rooter for 4 hours!!  Say what?? The kids had clogged up our toilets pretty good.
That night for dinner we ate at Ellis Fish Camp.  Matt had dinner plans with a friend visiting so I took the kids.  Such gorgeous views and our food was really good too!

I love their wedge salad and fried okra!  Clearly my diet starts back today!  

Have a great Monday and good luck shopping the Lily Sale!