Friday, June 30, 2017

Striped Bow Slides for Under $25!

Let me tell you a funny story about these slides. I originally saw them in pink for $90 by Sam Edelman. I was being cray, and I was about ready to buy them, when SUDDENLY my pal Ashley swooped in a saved me from a major purchase on such a trendy item. She said she had seen the same pair from Target for $24! And guess what? They're currently down to $18, girls! Even the "real" ones are on sale for $62 if you prefer those colors (and have more money than me haha!!).  Also, my friend Steph said she had the gray "dupes" too! I needed to find them! 

I was killing time at Target on Sunday before 10:30 mass, after I dropped my bff off at the airport. I had searched high and low for these slides on the Target site, but my size was sold out in all colors. These are TTS, by the way, and I have my usual 7.5. 
Serendipitously, I found one of the last pairs, and they happened to be my size! Major score at the St. Charles, IL Targ! LOL. 

Like, how can you even tell the difference?! To me, an oversized bow is an oversized bow, amiright?

They were the focal point of my outfit, but I went with some oldie buy goodie blue hued pieces. My eyelet shorts are literally 5 years old, but here are some similar ones:

Every woman out there needs a button-down or popover chambray shirt in her closet. Actually, I take that back. Every man does, too! Mine is super old J. Crew Factory. Here is another cute version-- super affordable, too! And another, depending on how dark you like your chambray. 

^^ Let me tell you about these leg shots. Omg, Mike and I were laughing so hard. I had this idea in my head of these shots--  I had seen them once before on a fellow blogger's site. Well, the problem was I had no idea how to replicate them. The other half of myself in these pics is me on the ground of a rogue parking lot, propped up on my elbows, holding my abs so hard (dying) to keep my feet elevated. Thank God for Pure Barre Geneva, I tell ya. Mind you, this was like some mechanic shop in St. Charles, on a busy road. We looked like major freaks! All in the name of this foot shot I was trying recreate. I wish Mike had a pic of the other side of me. I was just laughing hysterically. Also, he took probably 15 of these and only 3 are even halfway normal. LOL 

Here are the heeled version of the "real" Sam Edelman ones. Very cute, too!

Which color do you like best?! I am anxiously awaiting my college roomie/bff (and her husband, son and pup)'s arrival! I can't wait to spend the weekend with them!!!

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Flow-y, Tassel'd, Peplum Loft Tank for 50% off + My Bff's Visit!

Megan and I have been best friends for decades-- literally. We met at West Blvd. Elementary School in the early 90s, but she was whisked away to a different elementary school because of neighborhood boundaries. Sad!!! However, we rekindled immediately in our matching blond-bowl-cut-and-braces middle school days, and we remained friends throughout high school, Miami of Ohio for Megan and Saint Mary's for me, Case Western Dental School for Megs and moving to Chicago & getting my masters from Concordia University for me. 

I always laugh because I truly HATE and fear talking on the phone (shocking, I know, because I can talk in front of teens all day without a prob, and I like to make friends with anyone who is breathing), but Megan is programmed into the new car's "calling" thingy, along with my mom, dad and Mike. I can talk to Megan and catch up for hours, which is huge for a phone-a-phobe. 

(Funny story: when Mike and I had our first phone call when we started "talking", I had two sticky notes full of topics to ask him about/keep the convo going. We talked for 51 minutes, which was miraculous because I was soooooo nervous. Haha!).   Over the weekend, I was lucky enough to have a visit from Megan and her sweet sis, Kimmy, who is basically my lil sis, too! 

I saw this tank top from Loft in one of their little catalog mailers, and I had to have it. 
It sells out really quickly, but then they typically replenish it.  The back detailing is so cute because it's all criss-crossed and adorbs. Also, the tassels are what sold it for me! Right now, Loft is having a 50% off sale, so HURRY! Use code: sparkler for the deal.

I also love this option for an alternative top! Or additional, since these prices are awesome! $25-30 for a summer tank is really affordable/reasonable!

^^ How pretty are these sissies?
I went with an XS for this tank, and I am glad I did. I am typically XS from Loft, only because it runs a bit bigger. It's flowy and roomy, so you should definitely size down. 

We had so much fun checking out the Swedish Days Festival in downtown Geneva. I highly recommend Chianti's and their famous garlic crab pasta!

I remember at my wedding, I had all my bridesmaids do "fake laughs" for a pic that turned into us laughing so hard in real life. Then, as a bridesmaid for Megan and Jimmy's wedding in August, I used the technique. I am telling you: it starts fake, but then you die laughing due to the absurdity. Try it!

Megan and I opted for jorts, and Kimmy wore the J. Crew Factory scalloped shorts that I am so obsessed with. 

flamingo leg?!?!?!? ^^

Swedish Days is so cute in DT Geneva! I love our idyllic little town. 

My bag is suuuuuper old Kate Spade, but here are some similar styles:

More flowy tanks to scoop up this summer including my favorite striped tank from Loft that is on sale for $20!! 

Remember, use code: sparkler for 50% off everything today at Loft! 

Our weekend with Megan and Kimmy went way too fast! It was so great to have her visit. I can't wait for another Columbus trip or Geneva trip!

Are you liking the cooler weather if you live nearby? I sound so old, but I really liked the rain today because I had just put fertilizer on the flowers yesterday. LOL. #geezerstatus


Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Colorful Off-the-Shoulder Dress & a Pupdate!

Happy Tuesday, you guys! We had friends/neighbs over on Friday night for a bonfire to roast up some s'mores, and it was so nice! We love to entertain; we always have loved inviting friends over, but our apartment didn't have much (any) seats! Now, we have space to host, and it's exactly what we were looking for when we were house-hunting.

I have loved this dress for (literally) 7 years. I bought it at a boutique called V-Fish in Lakeview when I lived in the city 7 years ago. It was just this little booty-q on the way to the Bally's (RIP) I worked out at in Lincoln Park. I passed its window-front with gorgeous dresses every time I walked to the gym, and I had to swoop this up. It's SOOOOOOOOO comfy. It's literally the softest cotton. It's just the best loungin' dress. Perf for roasting s'mores, eating and entertaining. 

Even more off-the-shoulder dresses that won't break the bank!

Pupdate on Bentley (follow up to my Insta stories): on Thursday morning, he started limping and walking on only 3 legs! It was so sad! I immediately called our vet, and got Bentley in for the afternoon. It turns out he tore his ACL :( we felt horrible! It could have been from jumping off the bed or couch, or even just hopping around like when he is excited. Needless to say, we felt awful. He goes back this Thursday to meet with the ortho surgeon at the vet. Praying it doesn't require surgery. 

Even more reason to carry this precious little one like a baby. LOL

As many belly rubs as you want, buddy! 

I love this lace off-the-shoulder dress! The midi length is unique and perfect for weddings!
You have to be careful with off-the-shoulder dresses, and I will tell you why. Sometimes the fabric slips up and won't stay off the shoulder. That is so annoying. I would definitely go for a cotton or linen fabric in your OTS dress, simply to avoid the slippage. LOL. PS: after typing that out, it's a major first world prob. :O

Since this dress is so old, I am linking a ton of options for o-t-s dresses. This style is just the best (and apparently it was on trend about 7 years ago, too, hahah).

How about the comfiest gingham O-T-S dresses? A few are under $30, too!

Pop a pair of red sandals or some red statement jewels with the navy gingham dresses for the 4th!

Jack Rogers: 

More pink Jacks:

Dyingggggg over the blush pink pineapple ones. On sale, too! 

So, we have never had dogs before (I have always wanted a puppy!), and this first injury of Bentley's makes us so sad. Has your dog ever hurt his/her ACL? A lot of my friends have friends who their dogs have, but some have not required surgery. I will know a lot more on Thursday, but I feel terrible! My only ever pet was a hermit crab in about 1993 that lasted approximately 20 days in the Hancock household. It's quite a learning curve, but man, these pups really become a part of your family in a hurry!!!


Monday, June 19, 2017

Embellished Shift Dress

We had the honor of attending Lee (our best man) and Jacque's wedding over the weekend.  Mike and Lee have been close friends since his Notre Dame Drum Line days. We adore Lee (and Jacque, too!!). We danced all night at the reception; it was SUCH a fun wedding. Mike's drummer pals and their wives are so much fun!

I have a few iPhone snaps that I wanted to share to highlight the Lilly Pulitzer dress I wore to the wedding. I literally bought it in March in Florida over spring break knowing I would wear it in June for this wedding. It comes in white, too, in case you're a bride-to-be or just want a beautiful white dress for summer.

The gold beading is sooooo gorgeous. The peep hole back is really fun and unique, too. I received a ton of compliments all night. It's a TTS shift dress, and I am wearing a 6. The color is a bright coral, but I honestly think the color isn't nearly as pretty online as it is IRL. So, here are some very non-profesh selfies and iPhone pics to give you an idea of how pretty this Lilly is!!

^^Mike had already left for groomsman duties, but fortunately the hotel had a great full-length mirror. LOL 

These are my wedding shoes! I bought them 3 years ago from a J. Crew online sale for $90. These BP wedges are identical to mine, but they are in silver.  Here are some equally glittery options:

The back was a little perilous to hook by myself, but I got it! LOL
This is my wedding lip stain. We are about to celebrate our 2nd wedding anniversary, so it is obvious that it lasts forever! A little goes a long way, because I wear this lip color out all the time on the weekends! You never have to re-apply. That was what made it perfect for our wedding. I never had to stop what I was doing to fix my lips!

My earrings are old from our rehearsal dinner in 2015, but here are some similar statement earrings:

Their wedding ceremony was absolutely beautiful! 

Jacque wore her mother's wedding gown, re-made into strapless.  It was stunning! She was truly the happiest bride I have ever seen!! 

Party bus time with the most handsome date!

Love these gals! Drumline friends and wives of drummers. 
Me, Katie, Maggie and Sarah. 
Maggie used Rent the Runway for her awesome Halson Heritage dress! Her dress, the "Blush Imprint Dress" by HH has the cutest scoop back. Love! 

Lee got to play with the band during one of the songs! I love how Mike and his NDDL friends continue to play the drums, even after graduating from ND in 2006. It's so special and such a huge part of their lives. 

^^I met Kyle early on at Notre Dame! He, too, was a drummer with Mike, and he was also the mascot for Notre Dame, the iconic leprechaun! He's kind of a big deal :) Crazily enough, I also student taught his younger brother! Small world!  Also, Kyle was one of the best dressed men at the wedding-- he rocked a light blue seersucker striped suit. Such a perfect summertime suit option.

Lee's smile says it all! 

Again, Jacque could not have been more beautiful, happy and stunning! We are so happy for these two! 

With the glowing bride en route to the reception!

This dress, admittedly, was a splurge. I am such a huge proponent of Lilly Pulitzer, and I know her pieces last (literally) for decades. However, I am linking some other coral options below in different price points. Happy shopping! 
Loving this Anthro one on sale for $182. 

What is your favorite choice of these coral hues?