Monday, March 2, 2015

Choosing Your Next Book (Spring Break Edition)

The other day I blogged about several things I plan to bring on my Spring Break trip, but I forgot one of the most important items...reading materials! I mean how else are you going to survive the airport and plane? Plus I know I'm not the only one who enjoys a good book on the beach. Well, I have been skimming various websites, lists, and asking friends for recommendations of books to read. Maybe it is because I spend so much time reading for class in college, or maybe it was that bad spell of books I went through over the summer, but I really want to make sure I have some reassurance going into reading a book. That being said, I will really read almost anything you throw at me. I wanted to be able to give you several options for what to read over vacation so my list has books for all moods and preferences. I hope you find at least one that you enjoy! Also, don't forget to add me on GoodReads because I keep it updated with my reading list and I would love to know what you are reading!
If you enjoyed...

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn, read The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins. This book came out at the beginning of the year and has absolutely taken off in popularity. Many of the reviews related it to Gone Girl so you know you can't go wrong with this book.

Jodi Picoult novels, read Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty. She has several popular books published, and her latest did not disappoint critics. This is one of those books that you don't want to put down, but you won't be lost if you have to stop reading to board a plane or take a break for a couple of days.

anything, read Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand. Okay, that was vague, but this book has something for everyone. It is well-written, interesting, and tells an incredible story. I really can see any of my friends and family enjoying this book so you should definitely give it a read.

The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown, read The Charm School by Nelson DeMille. DeMille is one of my favorite authors and I have read a bunch of the John Corey books he writes. This book is not related to any of his other books, but I wish it would because it was so good. The ending is incredible and DeMille's sarcastic characters add a nice element to this thriller.

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austin, read North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell. I wish I had read this book before seeing the BBC miniseries on Netflix because I love it that much. The plot has some similarities to Austen's classic, but this less well-known novel takes place in a cotton industrial town which introduces several different factors that I really think add to the characters' complexity and make the plot a bit more relatable to a woman today.

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? by Mindy Kaling, read Bad Feminist by Roxanne Gay. This collection of essays should be easy to read through and it has good reviews on Amazon as being a nice combination of satire and an important message on feminism.

historical fiction, read All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr. This book was named one of the top books of 2014 and with it's historical context, it's easy to see why. After looking at reviews, I can't wait to read this book!

Eat, Pray, Love by _, read Wild by Cheryl Strayed. Reese Witherspoon portrayed Strayed in the Oscar-nominated film based on the memoir. This book is about the evolution of changing and discovering oneself in a bit of an unconventional way.

What books are you reading this Spring Break?


Sunday, March 1, 2015

Working in retail means that I am surrounded by Spring lines well before it is time to wear them in Virginia. I mean, we still have snow on the ground. Today I decided to wear a Spring-y outfit because I am just so excited to head to Florida for a week and because it is now March!

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Ten Things to Pack for Spring Break

One week from today I will be on a plane heading south to the sunshine state for some baseball and the beach. Spring break cannot come soon enough because I am so tired of seeing wool sweaters and snow. Technically I have enough time to pack next week, but I know that if I don't start planning now then I will end up with some random items taking up valuable space and leaving behind some essential item (last year it was my Yankees hat). Plus, I am beyond thrilled to have an excuse to go through my spring clothes! I haven't laid out any outfits yet, but there are a few things that I know are crucial to pack after 4 straight Florida spring break trips.

{get everything here}
One: Cute, Lightweight top
This can be used for day or night, but the key is that it is lightweight. If you're going to a game, like me, opt for cotton because at least it will dry if you sweat a bit (which you will).

Two: Neutral Flats
I love wearing my jacks when the weather is nicer. However, a cute pair of flats is perfect for going to and from the airport. They can also be a nice change of footwear for a chilly evening or just to take a break from sandals.

Three: Hat
Another one that doesn't need much of an explanation. I showed a baseball hat because they're easier to pack in a suitcase than a sunhat. 

Four: Sundresses
I don't think this needs an explanation. Bring a few of these because they take up no space and are perfect for any occasion because you can dress them up or down.

Five: Makeup with SPF
I always wear makeup with SPF because my face is pretty sensitive, but it is especially important to protect your face if you are going to be in the sun all day.

Six: Bathing Suit
Don't be one of those people who goes to the beach, forgetting the one essential item.

Seven: Statement Earrings
It is hot in Florida, at least it is hotter than Virginia. I usually opt for fun earrings over a fun necklace because I don't want anything sitting on my neck that doesn't have to be there. Plus, bracelets and necklaces have been responsible for their fair share of unfortunate tan or burn lines.

Eight: Sandals
Get a pedicure (or give yourself one) and throw on those sandals that have been sitting in the back of your closet all winter. Is anyone else beyond excited for sandal season?

Nine: Sunglasses
Don't get crows feet from squinting your eyes. The sun will reflect off the sand and water so it will be even harsher than usual.

Ten: Cute Sweatshirt
The Florida evenings are much chillier than the days. I always bring a cute sweater or sweatshirt when I go out to dinner because the breeze really gets to you. It is really nice to be able to sit outside for meals in Florida, but, especially by the water, it is chilly enough to want a sweater and jeans.


Friday, February 27, 2015

The Friday Five: White and Gold

Guys, the dress is definitely white and gold. Actually, this little debate that is blowing up the internet is pretty funny and there finally seems to be an explanation for the science behind seeing the different colors. Quite frankly, when I turn down the brightness on my laptop I can see the dress as blue and black. Regardless, it was pretty funny to hear what everyone thought last night!


Wednesday, February 25, 2015

How To: Styling an Oversized Men's Button-Down

I have a confession: my favorite shirts are men's shirts. Not just any men's shirts though, preferably ones that are a size or two larger than I am. It's an unspoken rule in college that wearing a large shirt over norts is 100% socially acceptable, but sometimes I want to be that comfortable in my cute clothes. My solution to this is wearing men's button-downs. I have a couple of my brothers old ones, both dress shirts and flannels, and constantly wish I had more. The flannels are saved for winter finals or cozy winter nights because there really isn't a way for me to make them super cute, but I love styling the dress shirt hand-me-downs. There are so many different ways to style these shirts and everyone has a different preference. Some people can get away with wearing them without a belt, however since that is my slimmest part of my body, I really prefer to still keep some emphasis on it.
There are plenty of women's stores out there that sell buttondowns for prices that probably exceed what you want to spend on a comfy, casual outfit. TJ Maxx or other discount stores (including thrift stores) will have just as good of a selection in their men's section. If you want the fit to be oversized, you may as well go to the source where that fit is guaranteed.


The Perfect Shirt: Piko Tops

One of my friends had a Piko shirt last year and I remember thinking it was cute, but I never realized they would become as popular as they are now. Seriously, I feel like all of my friends are wearing them now, and with good reason. These shirts are so cute and so comfortable. 
I got my first one in the mail the other day and I just wanted to wear it and never take it off. The lavender color I ordered is perfect for Spring and I can't wait to add more of these to my collection! For those of you not familiar with the brand, they're a bamboo shirt which is why they are so soft. While I ordered a springy color, there are tons of options and they can definitely be worn year-round. The length is great to throw on over a pair of leggings or white jeans as the year goes on. Now, if you've seen this brand in boutiques near you, you may notice that the shirts are almost $30 and the tunics can be as pricy as $35, but if you go to, you can get them for $20-21! If the shirt doesn't sell itself enough already, the price definitely should. They have all different sleeve lengths and cuts depending on your preference. I really love the long-sleeve, rounded neck that I have, but you can't go wrong with any of the styles or colors. 
Personally, I am really excited about this shirt for Spring Break because Florida is an absolute sauna compared to Virginia this time of year, but at night it definitely cools off and I prefer a more covering top. I am thinking of styling it with some cute wedges and fun jewelry. It would also be a great shirt for the plane ride because it is cute and comfy, the perfect outfit to cope with any layover.
shirt // necklace // jeans // clutch // shoes //find everything here

I can't wait to style the shirt throughout the spring. Do any of y'all have one of these? Which one should I get next?


Friday, February 20, 2015

Friday Five: Ready for Spring

Guys, it's an important day! Do you know why? Baseball is back! Yes, today the Yankees pitchers and catchers report marking the official start of Spring Training and my countdown to seeing a few games over Spring Break. I am so incredibly ready for that trip to Florida. I mean, mentally I am ready...physically, I could use a few extra weeks of crunches before I go anywhere in a bikini.
Today's plans for me include a little spring cleaning and dinner and a movie...alone. I swear it's not pathetic and I am actually really excited about it. I am going to watch one of the Oscar nominated movies since I haven't seen any of them. If it's not on Netflix, I don't watch it these days.

Kate Spade made the cutest, printable voting slip for the Academy Awards.

Caitlin made a great list of some cute, affordable Spring items to get out of this weather funk.

This Sur La Table marble slab is so pretty and would be so helpful to have in my kitchen with all the baking I do.

I ordered this J. Crew Factory top already because I loved the print when J. Crew had it last year.

These mug cakes actually look delicious and I am seriously considering trying one out tonight.

Have a great weekend and stay warm!