Best of 2013

2013 was very good to me.  We managed to fit in a lot into this little old year.  Where even to begin?

Let's see... we rang in the new year in North Carolina with a group of our dear friends.

We celebrated many pre-wedding festivities during early spring.

In March, my girls and I went to Key West for my bachelorette party.

Then the next month, I married my favorite person ever. (part one // two // three // four // our wedding video)

We went to St. Lucia on an AMAZING honeymoon (part one // part two)

Summer was filled with lots of boat days and fruity drinks.  Many looked like this.

And we bought my first brand new whip (I'm proud of her).

Then she got married in October!

Oh, we were in a magazine, too!

November and December were filled with work events, lots of football games, and our first big holidays as Mr. and Mrs.  Then to round out the year, I had a thyroidectomy and thankfully got a benign pathology report - then we had a big move!  It was a good way to end the year.

Whew.  It really has been quite the year.  Looking forward to 2014!  Wishing you all a happy and safe NYE!  Oh, and I've got to give a shout out to my soul sister and best friend, Crystal - HAPPY BIRTHDAY! xoxo


something i like

These Matt Bernson Gauloise Smoking Slippers have been marked down 50% off on Shopbop.  That makes them $99 and quite the deal if you ask me.  Also comes in "wine" (burgundy color) and "moss" (a forest green color).  Get them while you still can!

getting recharged

"Beauty Sleep" Vogue US, January 1991, Photographer: Irving Penn

I don't know about y'all, but the holidays are exhausting.  I love the hustle & bustle of Christmas, but between my surgery, holiday happenings, gifting, preparing for NYE, moving (will touch on this soon) -all within two weeks, I feel like I've run a marathon.  Hope you all had a Merry Christmas, by the way.  Sometimes I feel a huge need for recharging my batteries.  

Here are ways I recharge myself when I feel it's needed...

// Sleep.
Getting the proper amount of sleep makes a HUGE difference in how I feel.  I try to shoot for eight hours of ZZZs, but I usually get about six (working on this.).

// Make a physical change.
No, I'm not talking about anything drastic, but sometimes a new haircut can do far more than change the way you look.  A change like that, even if it's just adding a few layers or subtle highlights, can make me feel so refreshed.  For me, I get the same feeling from tweaking my makeup routine, too.  Be it a new foundation or even a new nail polish, little changes are sometimes the key to breaking a rut.

// Remove the unnecessaries. 
Unsubscribe from annoying emails.  (I have limited myself to receiving email updates from 10 of my favorite stores).  Clean out the closet.  Organize the junk drawer (or drawers, if you're like me).  Donate clothes you haven't worn in a year.  Throw out previous month's magazines that you've read, or let's face it, don't have time to read (and so they just accumulate).  And once in a while, say "no."

// Indulge.
Give in to a guilty pleasure or two.  Maybe it's a piece of cake, maybe it's a day at the spa.  Do something that you normally would say say "no" to.

// Identify & conquer.
Identify solvable problems and actually solve them... little by little, one at a time.  Have you been meaning to make a dentist appointment for a few weeks?  Well, sit down and do it.  I always feel 10x better when I can cross little tasks like that off my list. Which brings me to the next one...

// Make lists.
I like making a list of only tasks that are a reality at that particular moment in time.  Put the easiest things first on the list. Sometimes, I like to make one master list of things to do, then group that into many micro lists that can be tackled on different days (guess you can now tell I'm a big list person).  The key is to set attainable goals on your task lists.  Also, write down anything on your brain before you go to bed.  I hate lying in bed just thinking of things I need to remember the next day.  That's why I always keep a journal in my bedside table.  Writing things down lets the brain rest a little.

// Take a bath.
Sometimes, I find it hard to allow myself to completely relax.  Whenever I take a bath, I suddenly remember how I never feel as relaxed as I do when I'm soaking in the tub.  Lavender Epsom Salts are my favorite product to put in the bath.  They smell amazing and help to remove toxins from your body.

// Surrender.
...and take a "me" day.  Get some rest.  Don't get dressed and go anywhere.  Just be.  We all need it here and there.

// Be thankful.
Write down things you're grateful for.  If you're at work or at home and reading this post, then I can guarantee you that the good always will outweigh the bad things that may seem so important to you.

When all else fails... there's always wine and Netflix.

p.s. I added a tab labeled "our wedding" on the right column underneath the categories list.  Check it out if you're new here and are interested in my wedding prep and pictures from the big day.  Also, under my header, you can now see a "collaborations" tab.


flirting with color // NYE style

I'm typically a very black, white, beige, and navy person when it comes to style, but this NYE, I'm looking towards something beyond the same old metallics and dark colors. Why not spice it up a little with a bright pink party skirt? The options for this skirt are endless. Sure to make statements all throughout the year, right? I'd pair it with a simple, fitted top, like this one (or, if you're feeling a little daring, this one). The simplicity of the black top allows the pink to really hold its own. Plus, it gives a little wiggle room for fun statement jewelry, like this necklace. As for the shoes, these are my pick. Now that's a fun outfit.

P.S. Shopbop just marked down hundreds of new items!  Check it out here.  NYE honorable mentions (yes, they are black - my favorite color to wear) are this dress and this jumpsuit.  My closet needs them something terrible.


wren // beaufort, sc

I love any space that manages to be industrial and warm at the same time.  Throw in a little coastal flair into the mix and that's exactly how the environment feels in Wren Bistro & Bar.  Brandon and I joined his parents there for dinner on Christmas Eve and it's not just good, it's gooooooood.  Certainly in my top three favorite Beaufort restaurants.  You've got to check it out for yourself if you ever find yourself in Beaufort - it's located right in the heart of downtown.  The interiors alone make my heart palpitate just a little.  It has a very inviting, yet upscale environment that I just eat up every time.  All of the design touches are very thoughtful - even down to the simplistic and charming table settings.  Did I mention they serve their bread in little silver coffee cans?  (Stealing that idea for dinner parties.)  I am certainly not a food critic, but I will tell you it's worth a visit if you're in the area.   The menu has anything from chicken salad, to steak, to seafood.  I've never tasted anything there that hasn't left me dreaming about it weeks afterwards. 

Doesn't Wren look just scrumptious?

(images via here, here, and here


merriest of all

Hello and Merry Christmas Eve!  (I can't believe it's Christmas Eve.)  I'm sure most of you aren't spending this day on the computer reading this post, but with your families - and good for you.  I did want to check in though and wish you all the merriest Christmas of all.  

I'm home with my family, soon to be joined by Brandon.  We'll do church and dinner with his parents, followed by midnight mass with my family.  No matter how old I get, I still feel the magic of Christmas - the warmth of being with family, the memories of staying up almost all Christmas Eve night with my brother because we were just too excited to sleep, the smell of yummies baking in the oven, sights of a living room filled with torn wrapping paper, and most of all, celebrating Jesus' birth at Christmas Eve mass. The choir singing Christmas music gets me every time.   

Traditions and familiar memories like these always make for a merry one. This year, I have a "new" family to celebrate the season with and one day, one year soon, we'll have little ones, which will make it all the more sweet.  These are all things I am so very thankful for and pray for because I never want to take these special moments for granted.  Merry Christmas to all of you.


product spotlight // etsy finds

1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6

I've said it before... you can find some real treasures on Etsy, but who has time to look through thousands upon thousands of shops? Unless you have a very specific item you're looking for, Etsy can become a lot daunting very quickly.  This is where I bring you suggestions. 

I've bookmarked these items recently and thought I'd share them with you.  Like these luxury lucia friendship bracelets, which are strung with 80 tiny 14k gold filled beads.  They would make the perfect gift for your favorite friend.  I'm personally digging these gold dipped arrowhead necklaces.  The whole shop is a real treat - worth exploring a little deeper.  I have about five things from that shop that are now in my "want" folder on my bookmark tabs (yes, I have a bookmark folder specifically dedicated to things I like... because I forget about them).  Tell me what's prettier than these gold rimmed agate coasters.  Go on, I'm waiting.   And these gold foil heart pencils would be the sweetest addition to any work space.   I'm pretty smitten with this vintage porcelain dish.  I love little trivets to put anything from jewelry or lipstick in.   Finally, this painting.  I've loved it for a lot of months.  It's the prettiest (yes, I think prettier than the coasters).  And it's called "coastal calm," which basically is the inspiration behind my whole design aesthetic.  So it's meant for me, right?


welcome to charleston, H&M

I was invited to attend a pre-opening press breakfast at the new H&M store here in Charleston.  It took place yesterday just a few hours before the store opened doors to the public.  Only had stepped into an H&M once before and that was in NYC when I just didn't want to waste the time trying on clothes.  Still, I know how big of a deal this is for Charleston.  I love when little King Street expands..and expands..and expands.  We got C. Wonder recently too.  And Kate Spade.  Charleston's movin' on up.

Anyway - the breakfast.  Well, I think Chassity and I were the only ones to eat and it was delish thanks to Jim 'N Nicks.  The store is huge -absolutely overwhelming to say the least.  There were some great deals going on and trust me, Charleston knew about it.  Surely there had to be somewhere between three and five hundred people in line.  Maybe more... I couldn't see the end of the line because it wrapped around a square block outside the store.  Some apparently slept in line to guarantee a good spot!  (crazy people.)

skirt (30% off with code GIFTNOW), shirt (similar), booties, necklace (similar), earrings (similar) (these are similar too!), lipstickhandbag (shown in first photo)

See those lines?  It wrapped around three streets!  Craziness.
Thanks, H&M, for having me attend the press breakfast!  Charleston girls, definitely check out the store.  Not to disappoint.  I was happy to get my hands on a few key basics, like this fitted jacket.

Oh- Sorry I've missed you the past few days.  I've still been recovering and pulling out the laptop - something you'd think would be so easy while getting rest after surgery- has never felt like more of a chore.  Just need these days for a breather.  If you follow me on instagram, you know already that my pathology results were benign.  That's the best Christmas present I could receive right now.  Thank you, thank you, thank you for the sweet words.  You've made a girl feel loved.


shopbop sale picks

Shopbop just announced a coupon code for an additional 20% off all sale items!  I've compiled my picks from the sale... and trust me, there's some deals that are hard to ignore.
Use code EXTRAOFF20 at checkout to save.


...and as always, free 3-day shipping and free returns!

monday musings

Thanks for all the prayers & kind words, y'all.  My surgery went smoothly and I'm just waiting to (hopefully) hear a good report from pathology tomorrow.  I've been posted up on the sofa since Thursday and it's about to kill me.  I can't wait to feel well enough to go out and do something.  Who am I kidding... I can't wait to feel well enough to shower and not feel like I need a nap afterwards.  Ok, enough pity party for me. 

Since I've had ample time to spend perusing the net, I thought I'd share some recent pins, bookmarks, and things I've mentally noted for the future.  Like this spindle chair and ottoman.  I'm quickly becoming a huge Z Gallerie fan.  I won't be buying this one anytime too soon, but for future reference - has anyone had any experiences with their furniture before?  I feel that furniture is really one of those things you need to see and feel before buying, but this one just looks so good.

Loving this Palm Leaf Tote.  Looks like the perfect carry-all for the beach and pool.  Look at me, already thinking of spring and summer days.  The good thing for us down south is that we only have about three more months until a tote like this can actually be put to good use.  I absolutely love cold weather until the new year hits - then I'm ready for the hot sun and long river days.

These handcrafted mugs are calling my name.  They are handmade by skilled artisans in South Africa, so every piece varies in shape and color.  This is imperfection done right.

These Jeffrey Campbell booties are so on my radar right now.  (Currently on sale at Nordstrom!)

Obsessed with this lamp.  

This is a great quote.

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