My Magpie Tendencies

20 Feb

I like sparkly things.

Fun fact: magpies have a reputation for stealing jewelry and other bright shiny objects. However, a study came out in 2014 that proved that they DON’T actually prefer shiny things. So yeah, that’s your dorky fact of the day…

Anywhoo… I’m cool with being a bit of a magpie (as defined before 2014).

While one part of me is totally comfortable in jeans and a black t-shirt, the other part of me is kind of obsessed with patterns. I mean, all you have to do is take a glance at my Instagram account to see my pattern obsession.

But it’s not just patterns… it’s SPARKLES! Lately I’ve been drawn to sparkly bracelets, embellished sweaters and even pretty brooches. I’m going to go ahead and call it my eccentric grandma phase.

A few years ago I was all about the statement necklaces, and now I’m all about the statement bracelets. My favorites are from Leighelena. I picked up one of their wrap bracelets in Austin in 2014 and I’ve worn it almost every day since. Recently I did a search for Leighelena bracelets on Poshmark and HOLYMOLEY was I excited to see a bunch of them for sale for a fraction of the retail price. I treated myself to a couple new ones and I’m keeping an eye out for a replacement of my original bracelet that is now looking quite worn.

I’m also loving the fun of adding an embellished sweater to an outfit.

I bought the black beaded sweater back when I was pregnant with Jack because I figured it would liven up any boring maternity shirts. I’ve been wearing it faithfully for over 7 years now and it’s still one of my favorites. The striped and embroidered version was a Poshmark find – originally from Anthropologie and scooped up for $35. The third has little flowers made out of beads on the front of it and I found it at a fun consignment store new-with-tags ($139 retail) for $80.

I’ve been wearing the bejesus out of these three sweaters, so I figured I’d do a search on Poshmark for another similar sweater to add to my collection. I found this amazing Kate Spade Leni cardigan:


Original price $228(?!) and I bought it for…$40.

NOW that makes being a magpie worth it!

Have you found your style ‘evolving’ into a new phase lately?

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My Den Update: The AFTER

19 Feb

A couple weeks ago I shared my den with you (read it here). While it was one of my favorite rooms in the house, it needed some work with an undersized rug that I no longer liked, too much clutter, and a weird corner area.

To remind you, here was the before:

I was hoping to solve all my den issues with three “problem solvers” from Wayfair:

  • Susan Blue Area Rug (size 6 x 9), on sale for $83.99. (find it here)
  • Hillis Curtain of Fairy String Lights, on sale for $26.99. (find it here)
  • Tall Water Hyacinth Wicker Basket, on sale for $38.99. (find it here)

In addition to spending $150 at Wayfair, I also brought in a fake plant from another room and removed a bunch of clutter. I also finally put away my Christmas tree… in February.

Here is the after:

I couldn’t get Ollie to leave this photo…
A better look at the fabulous rug!

The rug is exactly what I was hoping for! It is a couple feet wider than the previous version and a foot longer too. The classic style makes such a difference in the room. I moved the rug a bit closer to the back wall so that it filled the space better, but still left a walkway from the laundry room/garage/bathroom. The other rug got rather dirty from all the foot traffic, so with a larger walkway we can avoid dirtying up the rug with our shoes. 

As for all that clutter, I moved Ollie’s crate into the sun room since he only uses it when he stays at someone else’s house. I relocated all the games that previously lived in the side table and also added a fake plant from another room. I also removed the pillow and blanket from the massage chair.

When it comes to that corner area, I removed the photo that was on the wall, the chalkboard, the random mirror, etc. Instead of a bunch of random crap, I hung the fairy lights on the inside of the overhang and moved our hand-me-down ottoman (a favorite from my grandparent’s house) into that area. When we have a bunch of people over, the ottoman rolls out and makes for some easy extra seating. For now, I stacked my new basket on top and it is used for snuggle blanket storage when we aren’t snuggling.

I am so happy with how everything turned out for a relatively low cost. I was also really impressed with the quality of what I ordered from Wayfair. In fact, I’m already eying the kitchen/dining tables for a replacement that won’t break the bank…

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Jack is 7!

18 Feb

Each year on Jack’s birthday I get a little teary as I remember his birth story and the month we spent in the NICU. If you are a more recent follower, you totally can’t tell looking at my giant child that he was born at just 31 ½ weeks! Well, here we are, 7 years later… and he’s growing up so fast.


This year to celebrate his birthday we had two mini celebrations. Last year’s kid party was a little overwhelming, so this year we decided to have something on a smaller scale. The weekend before the big day, Jack invited two of his favorite friends to join him in painting some pottery. After the masterpieces were complete, we walked across the street to a fun local ice cream parlor and ate a bunch of ice cream. While Jack forbade ME from singing Happy Birthday, apparently it was okay for his two friends to serenade him. So. Freaking. Cute.

I took a bunch of photos, but won’t share them here because I don’t like putting pictures of other people’s kids on the internet. But believe me… it was adorable.

Jack’s actual birthday was on Friday (February 15th), so Travis and I visited Jack at school and joined him for lunch in the cafeteria. We decided to keep it a surprise that he was coming home with us, so after lunch he went back to his classroom before the teacher had him gather his things and go to the front office (this is totally a school rule, we weren’t allowed to take him straight from lunch).

This was apparently a terrible idea. He’s never been told to go to the front office before, so as soon as he rounded the corner and saw us, he burst into tears. He cheered up though when we told him we were going to Great Wolf Lodge for an overnight trip RIGHT THEN!

This was actually our 4th year of visiting Great Wolf Lodge in Williamsburg, VA. They had a really good special for the Friday night of Jack’s birthday – I guess most people don’t want to go to an indoor water park for their romantic Valentine’s trip – so I hopped on it! When we got there, they said we qualified for a room upgrade, so not only did our room have a fireplace… but it also had a little bunk bed section just for kids.

We had such a fun time and came back home on Saturday night. On our “way home” (totally not on our way, but we had a gift card) we stopped by our favorite Mexican restaurant and had them do the birthday song, complete with clapping and a sombrero!

In honor of Jack’s 7th birthday, here are 7 things about Jack:

#1: Jack STILL looooooves his mommy. I know at some point he won’t be my number one fan and will probably turn into a sullen stinky teenager, but we are so not there. He’s happy to hug and kiss me, even in public. And I LOVE it!

#2: Jack lost his first tooth on his 6th birthday and another one a few weeks later. And that was it. While his front top teeth have been slightly wiggly for months and months… he hasn’t lost any other teeth.

#3: For Jack’s pottery painting birthday play date, he picked a little hedgehog figurine to paint.

#4: Jack is still obsessed with LEGOs. He will spend over an hour building his various inventions and has stories to go with every single thing.

#5: Jack’s current favorite thing to watch on TV is Youtube videos by Unspeakable all about Minecraft. He likes to get ideas for Minecraft worlds and then create them on his own. He also thinks the Unspeakable guy is hilarious.

#6: Jack is currently loving the fluffy robe he got for Christmas from us. The moment he gets home from school, he throws off his shirt and wears his robe with his pants like a little Hugh Heffner.

#7: Current favorite foods are egg sandwiches, scrambled eggs, cheeseburgers, spaghetti with meatballs, steak, ham sandwiches from Subway, and mini chocolate donuts.

Happiest of birthdays to my super awesome, fantastic, lovable Jack!

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Awkward Prepubescent Valentine’s Day Memories

14 Feb

We don’t really do much for Valentine’s Day in my house and I’m totally cool with that. Typically, my husband will bring home some grocery store flowers and a little candy for us all to share, and that is more than fine by me. I’ve told him before not to waste money on the fancy expensive stuff, including craploads of roses and dinner plans on the big V day. If I want something fancy, I’d prefer to buy it for myself… (in fact, a Rothy’s order is making its way to me right now!).

My best Valentine’s Day was 7 years ago, when I was in the hospital trying to push Jack out of my hooha. Which I do realize isn’t that relaxing of an experience… a massage would have been much nicer. But it certainly was the best gift I’ve ever received.


Anywhoo. It is WAY more fun to talk about those awkward Valentine’s Day experiences from when I was a teenager.

Back in high school. I had a HUGE crush on this boy. I crushed on him for YEARS. Every time he’d sigh in my direction or cut his hair… I would swoon all about it. We were in some of the same activities/classes together, so I would occasionally work up the nerve to speak to him. And then spend the next 4 days dissecting every weird thing I said out loud.

I don’t know if they did this in your school, but for Valentine’s Day at my high school you could buy a carnation to be delivered to someone with a little note.

It was a great chance for awkward students to profess their lust for each other. It cost like $1 and BOOM you’re suddenly someone’s girlfriend/boyfriend.

All day long, when a classroom door would open with a carnation delivery, everyone’s hearts would start pounding as we all anticipated it being a super special gift from a secret (or not so secret) admirer. It was the ULTIMATE status symbol. To receive a carnation. Or OHMYGOD multiple carnations on Valentine’s Day.

SUCH popularity! I could hardly imagine it!

Well, even though my memory totally sucks I remember sitting in class one Valentine’s Day. I was at peak dork, which means it was probably Freshman or Sophomore year when I had a terrible perm and crunchy hairsprayed bangs sticking straight outta my head.

I couldn’t decide which photo to go with in order to give you the TRUE look of what I was dealing with. So…I picked these two. The first one is from my freshman year homecoming and the second was FRESHLY permed wearing a new Christmas outfit. Sigh.

Back to that fateful Valentine’s Day: My crush was in my class with me, and when a carnation delivery student came to the door, I immediately imagined that they were coming to deliver one to me… FROM HIM. I know, it made no sense but I was heavily into rom-coms at that time, so I thought that was how real life would go for me.

Instead, the delivery person called out my crushes name.

OH! Maybe he had it delivered to him in class so that he could give it to me in person?! SQUEEEEEE

As my crush moves forward to take the carnation, my heart starts beating so hard and I’m getting a little shaky. IT. IS. HAPPENING.

No. It is not happening.

Instead, it was a carnation delivery for HIM. From another girl. Who (if my brain serves me right) later became his girlfriend.


Heart. Broken. I remember that stomach sinking feelings like it just happened yesterday.

Maybe that is why I hate carnations?

And perms.

So now it’s your turn! Please add your own embarrassing Valentine’s Day story in the comments! Bonus points for perms, retainers and hairspray!

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