this week's top links

Hi friends! This week has been a whirlwind, but we've got a fun weekend ahead... our good friends are tying the knot tomorrow and the Tigers play too! We may be missing the Clemson game, but you can bet we'll be cheering our boys on from the reception. Also, Watson turns SIX months old today! Or tomorrow? (He was born on the 31st, but since we only have 30 days in September.....) I'll be doing our six month update next week and plan on sharing my go-to ESSENTIALS for the first months. So stay tuned...
  • 8 things you need to know today.
  • a genius roundup of apps to make your life less stressful.
  • loved watching this "what's in my bag" video with jenna lyons. and also, all the final sale stuff at j.crew is an additional 50% off today only. these wedges and this cashmere t-shirt.
  • the beautycounter cleansing balm is on sale for $25 off. (you get free tint skin samples with every order, too.) this balm is a do-everything product that I talked about here. it cleanses while hydrating the skin (with raspberry and cranberry seed oils) and it also has vitamin C to brighten the appearance of skin. you can use it as a mask, too. put it on your feet at night under socks to soften them. put it on eczema. do whatever you want with it! I use it to take my makeup off at night and to do a really nice facial massage. and on the subject of safer skincare, this quote. (praise hands.)
  • I really love this article about how to not let your email control your life—and how to respect others time while doing it, too. taking notes. "inbox zero" is a mythical thing to me, but I might need to change some things.
  • the best bra ever. (even though, let's be honest—it's rare that I'm not wearing one of the nursing variety.)
  • a really great idea for storing cookie sheets and muffin tins.
  • obsessed with Hyla's new jewels.... like this bangle. african sapphires? never knew I even loved them. and these tassel earrings are gorgeous.
  • I'm starting the hunt for a new bag and this one is beautiful.


i'd pick this stuff (shopbop sale)

Some really great pieces were just added to the Shopbop sale and they are up to 50% off! Here are my favorites. Seriously though... these loafers, this draped coat, and this shirt. Those are my big favorites!


new fall/winter trends I don't hate

Sometimes it's kind of hard to get on board with the new trends, but here are a few for FW 2016 that I actually don't hate. 


I love these jeans—they come in a dark wash and white, too!


I love how this fur jacket is layered over a blazer. You could really add a faux fur collar to any jacket to give it an on trend, glam look. Like this one that comes in under $20. I love the navy blue one for something different!


Not too groundbreaking, but I'm loving that this "shades of tan" look is so big right now. This wrap coat is rosy-tan and it is everything. This one is more budget friendly and sort of reminds me of this look.


Ohhh this one really excites me. I love the monochromatic look in this photo below and love how unexpected the metallic skirt and sweater look together. Here's a really pretty metallic midi skirt option—I would style it like this. And then there's always the new BURU Corri Metallic Skirt, too.


Yes please—a chunky, low block heel! There's something so feminine about shorter heels to me. If you love the loafer look, but red isn't your thing, then these heels would be pretty great and very budget friendly.

What are your favorite fall trends?


how to clean makeup brushes + my most used brushes

One of the hardest things to remember to do is clean a makeup brush! Am I right? It's just no fun, but I'm telling you—those fuzzy little brushes harbor a lot of bacteria, dirt, and oil, which are all things I want to keep as far away from my skin as possible. Bobbi Brown says to clean foundation brushes once a week, eye brushes every two weeks, and all others once a month. I try to wash all of mine at once every couple of weeks—it's just easier to do them all at the same time.

I'm very simple at cleaning brushes these days. Give me some baby shampoo, some warm water, and a towel. That's all I need. I use the Beautycounter Kids Nice Do Shampoo to clean mine. It smells sooo good and is free of all those nasty harmful chemicals! 

The following pictures are going to be of a groundbreaking tutorial. Get ready for it!

I'm just kidding. This is so easy, but I thought I'd picture it anyway just in case you want to see. By the way, I do not use all of the brushes above, but that's the whole shebang. I used to be real fancy and use a ton of brushes, but now I try to stick to about 4-8 favorites. I'm a mom now. Ain't nobody got time to wash 20 brushes twice a month. At least I don't.

Just wet your bristles with warm water, take a cleanser of some type in the palm of your hand (see the amount I have in my hand above?), and work up a lather in the bristles by swirling them in your hand.

Now, my favorite part. Rinse the bristles real well and squeeze out all the water. You'll see all the yucky water come out first. Then repeat the first step and put some new soap on the bristles. You might need to do this a few times until you rinse the water out and see that it's perfectly clear. That is the most important part of all this - clean until the water you squeeze out at the end is clear!

I roll one end of a towel so that my brushes dry while being tilted downwards. This is because you want to keep the water from running up into the handle of the brush. (That's what makes the glue weaken and the bristles fall out.) 

Now for the brushes I use every day...

Sometimes I leave out #2 and #4, but it really makes a great difference when I use them! 
1. Beautycounter Retractable Foundation Brush: The best foundation brush I've used, especially for applying the Tint Skin Foundation
2. BeautyBlender Pro: I blend my concealer into my foundation with this. Then I use it to apply my RMS Living Luminizer
3. Beautycounter Powder Brush: The perfect density for all over powder, but could also be used for blush or bronzer. 
4. Beautycounter Blush Brush: I have to use a small brush like this to put powder over my under eye concealer or else my mascara will run down under my eyes! The bigger powder brushes just aren't precise enough to get under there well enough. This one is perfect. 
5. Crown Brush: Love this fluffy little brush for applying a light color all over my lid to use as a base and to blend shadows, too. I've had it for only about, ohh 10 years... and it costs about $3. Really great quality.
6. Sigma E 25: Great for applying lid colors and for blending shades. Sort of a "do it all" eye brush.  
7. Sephora Pro Featherweight Powder Brush #91: The softest brush ever and so, so good for bronzer! I wasn't even looking for a new bronzer brush, but tried this recently and had to buy it on the spot. 
8. Bobbi Brown Blush Brush: I know this is pricey, but I've had mine for years and it still looks brand new. It's by far the best blush brush I've ever tried. The size is perfect and the density of the bristles allows it to deposit juuuust the right amount of blush.



Fell in love with a new face mask. And yes, here I am putting my dark circles and all on display! Sheesh. Do love the mask a lot. Anything that promises to clear out my pores and make my skin all glowy has me at hello. And this was my first time trying a mask brush—I normally just use my fingers. Well, the verdict is in... the brush is where it's at, folks. 

& Skinsorials Mask Essentials (kit comes with brush and a special cloth!)

Weekend treats. We were passing the "hot now" sign and made a u-turn at the next light. I mean, sort of hard to resist!!

I just love this boy. Having him in this Solly wrap just feels so right. And, ya know, it allows me to do the dishes and stuff when he just wants to be held.

Saturday strollin'. I'm wearing The Great Camper dress and it's on sale in a couple different places: here and here. I got these shoes a couple years ago, but a few that are similar are these, these, and these (love those, actually!!). Carrying my old standby bag and this one is really similar.

Turns out, my Marquin Designs painting was the perfect little piece to fill in that blank space in our dining room. 

Look at this big boy! We got the 4Moms High Chair and finally put it together this weekend. In my opinion, it was a little pricey for something that's just going to get covered in sweet potatoes, but we love the clip-off tray cover, the magnetic tray, and the sleek design of the whole thing. We figured that a high chair is just as important as any other furniture in our house because it's going to be out in plain sight for the next 5+ years if we bring other kiddos into the family. So, we went for it. We haven't started Watson on solids yet, but he's ready!

Capped the weekend at Jeni's with my in-laws. The Atlantic Beach Pie was awesome.

Oh, something fun! My friend from middle/high school started a blog and youtube channel where she posts really amazing, fun makeup tutorials. I discovered it last night and watched all three of the videos she has up so far. It makes me laugh to just picture myself doing bold makeup like this. I think I would have eyeshadow and glitter falling down on my cheeks, but she definitely makes it look easy. Anyway, she is super talented, so check it out here!


Dining Room Reveal // Before & After

Our dining room is finished! Close enough, at least. Overall, there was nothing really terrible about the space, but it was in desperate need of a refresh. I mean, the dirty popcorn ceilings, yellowish beige outlet covers (seriously, why did anyone ever think this was a good look?), and the light fixture that was falling apart...they weren't the greatest of sights. So, we scraped the popcorn, painted the walls and trim, replaced the outlet covers, added a new light fixture, and changed up the furniture. Boom! 

Here are some pictures from when we were moving in—and then the afters. :)

:: AFTER ::

These pillows above are Suite 33 and are a nod to Charleston—the same ones I talked about here

This chandelier is from Lamps Plus, my go-to website for freshening up lighting because they have so many options and really awesome service. (Remember how we used this company in our bedroom and in Watson's nursery, too?) 

Anyway, I spent about two weeks deciding which route to take with the new light fixture because they have so many chandelier options (seriously, all the heart eyes), but ultimately decided on this Kichler Alden Brass 6-Light Chandelier. I love how it's linear—the long table really needed a light like this and it keeps the eye moving forward through the room, which is nice since this room is also a walk way from the living room to the kitchen. Having the dining room also serve as a pass-through has always been so awkward for me, but for some reason, now it doesn't feel weird to me! The room is light and airy, so I don't feel like I'm dodging furniture to get to another space in our house. 

If you're interested in seeing, here are the other chandeliers I was considering. See how it was a struggle!?

Speaking of wasting a couple weeks trying to pick out the perfect thing.... The two framed photographs you see there on the wall are from Minted. I'm in love with their marketplace because it features independent designers from all over the world. I stay pretty local in my choices, though—the "Daydream" print of the dunes reminds me of our beaches and the "Boneyard Beach" print is of Bulls Island in Charleston! I really love how the pieces are the same height but different widths. 

One of my favorite possessions, this Lulie Wallace painting. 

If you have a question about the photo above, it's probably in this bar styling post. :)

Now, maybe my favorite part—the table and slipcovered chairs. They are from Celadon. I've got to give it to my peeps over there because they really are incredible. I'll skip a really long story about this, but basically, they went above and beyond to help me find the perfect table and I couldn't be happier. I loved our old table and it's traditional bones (gave some charm/old vibes to our brand new house we used to own). But with this 1940s house, I really wanted a fresher take—and this reclaimed wood table with crisp, white slipcovered chairs was exactly what I envisioned. 

I picked out the chairs and table at the Celadon Warehouse/Outlet, where they keep the majority of the bigger pieces of furniture. I think they got tired of seeing my face over there (kidding, but not really) because I showed up like twice a week to see if they had gotten anything new in stock. I kept finding gorgeous pieces that would work, but I knew if I waited a bit, I might find something perfect. The buyers at Celadon scour the globe in search of really unique pieces...and because of that, sometimes there may only be one of something in stock! So I didn't want to miss out on something good. I picked out this table the day it came off the container. If you're in Charleston, do yourself a favor and stop in the retail store in Mount Pleasant, or hit up the outlet/warehouse if you're around on a Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, or the last Sunday of every month. SO. MUCH. GOOD. STUFF.

I first talked about the pedestal above in this breakfast nook update!

I think I'll eventually put another piece of artwork on the right wall that is opposite the Fiddle Leaf Fig tree, but I just haven't found the perfect thing yet. That's the great thing about simple spaces—you can add. That's a lot easier than taking away. And my eyes never, ever get tired of a white canvas!

table: Celadon
chairs: Celadon
light fixture: Kichler via Lamps Plus
pedestal stand on table: Jamie Young Coco Pedestal via Candelabra
brass sea urchin: Waiting on Martha
flower artwork: Lulie Wallace
framed photograph art prints: "Daydream" print and "Boneyard Beach" print via Minted
pillows: Suite 33
tree: Fiddle Leaf Fig via Hyams Garden Center
basket: Joss & Main (these are similar!)
rug: Rugs USA
curtains: West Elm
curtain rods: Revel via Bed Bath Beyond
paint color: custom shade we created at Sherwin Williams (we used Zurich White as a base and made it more gray)


good stuff

Trying to think of a name for this type of post. Things I like. Obsessions. Wish list. Nothing seems right. But I do know, it's all good stuff. 

This Prep Rally Prime + Prep Detangler has been hyped and I really want to give it a try. It's made with vitamins, biotin, and oils to hydrate and prep hair for styles. Contains no parabens, phthalates, or sulfates (yay!) and has the texture of water, so it's not supposed to be weighing. Anyone tried this? I've never had a blowout at Dry Bar, so I've never even seen this product used!

I'm really digging silver lately, especially when mixed with a warm color like on this taupe Zac Posen Eartha Iconic Saddle Bag. I've been loving crossbody bags since having Watson because carrying top handle bags is pretty much off the table with a wiggly baby + a diaper bag.

There's just something about a train case that is uber feminine and I'm loving this one by Henri Bendel.

I know Bloglovin' is old news, but I just got into it and am obsessed. I haven't really been reading too many blogs because I had to type in all of my favorites to see them. Anyway, having all of my favorites in one place is awesome. Plus I'm discovering so many new blogs while I'm at it. If you're into it too, here's my profile for you to follow along! 

The metallic lettering on this custom stationery is just too pretty. But the truth is, I am a stationery hoarder—I hate to ever use it and see it go! I love looking at stacks of pretty paper on my desk. (YUP, I realize this is a big problem and sort of defeats the purpose of stationery to begin with.) 

Just some pretty pillows. That shade of blue is my favorite right now. It's cerulean. And when you hear that color, if your thoughts immediately go to The Devil Wears Prada, then we are BFFs. The geometric ones are here and the blue ones are here. (I also have a pillow obsession. It is by far the easiest way to change up the look of a room!)

These Sam Edelman Rosie Pointed Toe Lace Up Flats look like the perfect fall shoe.  (available here, too.)

Also, I announced the winner of the NuFace giveaway on Instagram yesterday. Big congrats to Maura Morton! 


5 MONTHS WITH WATSON + our bedtime routine

Somehow I blinked and we have a five month old. The fourth month with Watson was so fun. He is into everything, smiling and laughing like crazy, army crawling all over the place (trying to figure out how to add the legs into the process), and still working on sitting up all on his own. He can do it for a few seconds, but then topples over on his side. And so wiggly! I swear I put on half of his diapers while he is laying on his belly. He rolls over on the changing pad every time I put him on it. Let's just say a hand never comes off of him because I know he would catapult off the dresser if I turned my head for a second.

Watson still loves to hold something in his hands at almost all times, so those little blanket/stuffed animal hybrid toys are the best. He is loving his jumperoo now that he is big enough to reach the floor. He wants to grab everything. In fact, he picked up my iphone (the big 6 plus, mind you) and then threw it down on the ground. Thank goodness for those glass protectors because that's all that cracked!

There's so much I want to remember about every stage Watson is in and I have a huge fear that I'm going to forget it all. I have a journal my mom gave me when I got pregnant—I wrote down little thoughts in there from time to time and now I'm jotting down notes about his milestones. I was keeping up with it each week, but now that he is 5 months, it's a little hard to keep up with the weeks (21 weeks old just sounds funny - I don't even know how many weeks he is, truthfully), so now I'm dividing up my notes by month. 


I've had a lot of questions about our bedtime routine because I've mentioned that Watson has been sleeping through the night since he turned 3 months old. I don't think there's any right way or wrong way, but we found a routine that works for us and so I'm going to share that today for all of you who have asked! This is how it all went down...

At 7 weeks old, we started our routine and he began sleeping from about 9:30pm - 5:30am, when he would wake up to nurse, but then he would go back to sleep until about 9am. When he turned 3 months old, we wanted to get on a more normal schedule, so we put him in his nursery crib (and out of his cradle in our room) and he started skipping that 5:30am feeding and would sleep from 9:30pm - 7:30am straight. By 4 months old, we started putting him down earlier at 7:30pm and he will sleep 12 continuous hours. We did have a few hiccups around that 4 month regression period, but only a few nights and then we were back on schedule.

To do this, we followed the routine mentioned in the Moms on Call book. This book explains how to create a great routine for your baby and how to stretch feedings, etc. I first became interested in this from hearing my friends who are moms talk about how it was their secret to getting their babies to sleep through the night. I'm telling you, everyone I talked to with a sleeping-through-the-night baby swore by this book! I am not a big reader admittedly—I would love to be, just don't carve out the time to sit down and do it. So that's why I liked this book... it's actually in outline format almost. There's absolutely no fluff to it. They tell you what to do and don't go into the "why" or anything like that. It's cut and dry. Our friends gifted the book to us and I'm telling you, it was probably the best gift we could have received!

I would recommend grabbing that book if you're pregnant or have a new baby who isn't sleeping well. There are tons of other tips in there too, by the way. The sleep schedule is just part of it. We experimented with what the book suggests and created our own routine:
  • Watson gets hungry every three hours, so I make sure to feed him three hours before bedtime no matter what. That way when he eats that last feeding, he is hungry and eats enough to sustain him through the night.
  • Bath every night right before bed. Watson has eczema and so I hate to bathe him every single night for that reason, but it helps him relax. He knows that when the bath comes, bedtime is next.  To help with his dry skin, I'm sure to use the Beautycounter baby line on him, which helps keep his skin hydrated and away from toxic/harsh chemicals, which are found in the majority of baby shampoos and lotions on the market.
  • Lights dimmed low while I put Watson's creams and such on. Brandon straightens up the bathroom in the mean time (puts away little squirty toys, towel, etc.). Then we get Watson's jammies on. 
  • I feed him what is hopefully his longest feeding of the day while Brandon reads a book or two. (This part is a little different than the book suggests, but this works for us.) Lights are dimmed to almost dark.
  • Watson normally starts to dose off while I'm finishing up feeding him. I'll rock him a few times in the glider before handing him over to Brandon, who ultimately puts him down in his crib. I get out of the room - I read that "nobody likes to sleep in the kitchen of their favorite restaurant" and since your baby can smell your milk, I find that he goes down easier when I just get out of the way. Plus, this gives Brandon a few really special moments with Watson since he doesn't get to spend that time with him during the day.
  • Watson's normally not fully asleep when he is set down in the crib, but he is able to fall asleep on his own soon after (this is what the book really pushes for because a baby that can put himself to sleep is able to soothe himself back to sleep if he were to wake up in the middle of the night.)
Anyway, not saying this is the BEST WAY to do it, but it's just what works for us! I'm sure we all have our own routines that do the trick. I think the biggest thing is just having a routine in general. When we stick to our routine, it's very clear how much happier Watson is (and we are, too!).

more BABY posts
pregnancy announcement  |   14 weeks  |   16 weeks  |   18 weeks  |   20 weeks  |  23 weeks  |  27 weeks  |  29 weeks  |  31 weeks  |  34 weeks  |  10 pregnancy must-haves  |  37 weeks


labor day deals (+ pictures of what I bought)

Happy Labor Day! Tropical storm Hermine barreled through Charleston on Friday, so our long weekend got a bit longer since Brandon didn't go into the office then either. I could get used to having him home on Fridays! Luckily, Charleston didn't get too much of a big storm, just lots of rain and limbs down in the yard. Be safe up there, all of you New Englanders! I know you're supposed to get your share of the storm today.

We spent the better part of the weekend getting pictures hung in the house, errands run, and eating at some of our favorite places, like the Angel Oak Restaurant and Zia. Those are the best weekends. I love being home and crossing things off of our to-do list. Oh, and football season started this weekend, so we had fun cheering on our Clemson Tigers on Saturday night. Such a fun time of year!

Lots of good sales going on this weekend, so I thought I'd share some that caught my attention...

ANTHROPOLOGIE: additional 40% off sale!
(these adorable shorts.)

BEAUTYCOUNTER: purchase the "ultimate spa collection" for $129, a $179 value.
(includes charcoal mask, rosewater mist, night cream, muslin cloth, and charcoal bar!)

CLUB MONACO: additional 40% off sale with code farewellsummer 
(there is so much on sale, too! can't beat a great white tee like this.)

CLARE V.: 15% off your purchase with code FallRS 
(check out the fall line!) 

FURBISH STUDIO: 15% off everything with code laborday15
(python trays are on sale even before the extra discount.)

(I have this cuff in a different stone and am obsessed.)

JANE POPE JEWELRY: 20% off online orders with code LDFLASH20
(too many good things to name.) 

J.CREW: 30% off $200+ or 25% off $125+ with code SHOPMORE
(this is the perfect little bag.)

POTTERY BARN: save up to 25% plus free shipping with code SAVEMORE
(love this watercolor painting)

REBECCA TAYLOR: additional 40% off sale with code LABORDAY
(where to even start? this peplum leather jacket, this dress, these chambray pants, these jeans, this box clip top)

SPLENDID: 25% off everything with code WKND25
(I recently picked up this dress and this dress.)

(wearing size small for reference)

(sized up to a medium in this one)

So both of those dresses above are 25% off with code WKND25! The next things aren't on sale, but just some things I recently picked up...

(I love this sweater so much! You can't tell, but it has the slightest sheen to it in when the fabric moves. It is very lightweight and great quality. obsessed.)


(comes in other colors, too—like black, red, and blue)

(I ordered these from Nordstrom but they are already sold out. Still available here, but hurry if you want them because these sell out super fast!)

 Enjoy the rest of your weekend! One day left of the NuFace giveaway!

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