‘Tis the Season

My mom always said she didn’t want to vacuum up pine needles, risk a bug infestation, or fret over the fire hazard of a dry tree, so I hung ornaments on an artificial tree for most of my life. It wasn’t until I celebrated the first Christmas with my (now) husband that I ever experienced the glory and magic of a freshly plucked evergreen from some farm past the ‘burbs. See festive cheer below:

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This year, however, my husband and I will be celebrating the Lord’s birth with a dramamine and bloody mary while sitting on a plane en route Spain. Rather than returning home to find a wilted tree that has been attacked by my cat more times than I am willing to admit, we decided to deck the halls with an artificial tree.

And thus… blog post. Trees are mad money and I want a cool one. So here are some I’ve found.

Martha Stewart Snowy Fir from Home Depot. All of M.Stew’s trees look fabulous online, but anything under $325 looks a little less fab in person. This tree, at $370, is very pretty. The one drawback is the fake fir is … pretty fake.

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So! If we’re gonna go faux, let’s REALLY do it. Love this Pottery Barn Faux Flocked tannenbaum and for one monthly payment of a Mercedes 350, this tree can be yours! But seriously, after eight years, this tree will just have cost you just $100 a year. Justification at its finest.

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I love the long branches on this tree. Adds a touch of whimsy to the look. The 7.5′ Downswept Hunter Fir Pre-Lit Artificial Christmas Tree  is gorgeous.

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Lastly, Pier 1 does it again. This Pre-Lit Champagne Tree is a classic faux. Not too garish, but accents with just the right amount of dazzle. Also, have you SEEN their Holiday Collections? Holy Holly Jolly Christmas- snag a 20% off by signing up for emails and salvage some money while you spend the rest.

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The most exciting part is that one of these lucky contenders has just been shipped to a good home…

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Cheers to all Pre-Thanksgiving Holiday Decorating Offenders (PTHDO)! 🙂


Chilly Mornings in Cute Jackets

Seasonal transitions are awesome. They’re filled with nostalgia, weather friendly activities, and of course a few new additions to the wardrobe.

As the weather grows colder, it becomes increasingly more difficult to roll out of my toasty bed for my morning run or PureBarre class. To help avoid the chill and motivate me to get moving, I am on the hunt for a cute jacket.

Usually my budget friendly hunting methods are successful, however in this particular search everything I like is rad… and priced accordingly.

In no particular order, the contenders are:

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Left to Right: Athleta Prevail 2  , Karma San Suu , NorthFace Calentito , Karma Debi

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Nike Bomber , Nike Windrunner , Karma Adelaide Pea 

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Lucy Energize Zipper , Zella Trinity

Like your money? Don’t forget to ALWAYS search for a promo code/ coupon before checking out.

Splits59: 10$ off $50+  -> promo code: kickincancer15

Macy’s: current 20% off promotion

Zobha: 20% off -> promo code: zcogsteph

Eye Luggage

With my relentless fall allergies and the occasional weekend football festivities, my under eyes have upgraded from having bags to luggage.


This weekend I was on the hunt for a miracle solution. But first, I needed to get hip to prevention:



late night pizza

Oktoberfest beverages

hormones and crying (these are simultaneous, duh)

side sleeping

stomach sleeping

And of course, all that stuff was in my life this past weekend. So, now onto discovering some pre-packaged magic!


1. Origins GinZing is actually a decent little product. It is a light pink cream that contains caffeine and actually lightens the under eye area when applied. You just need to be careful not to glob it on or you’ll look like the one girl who actually still uses a tanning bed and wears those little bug-eyed goggles, read: weird white under eyes.

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2. Origins No Puffery is a de-puffing gel. The No Puffery gel leaves a cool tingly sensation which feels awesome, especially when kept in the fridge. However, after use my puffs never quite disappear, they just feel a bit nicer.

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3. I have yet to try the Shu Uemura Instant Eye Fatigue Corrector, but they make a good little eyelash curler, so I mostly trust the brand. Bonus: the product description reads, “…[applicator contains a] massaging ball with the Shiatsu methods to make your eyes feel instantly revived.” Um, yes. I wouldn’t hate that.

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4. Makeup Alley raves about Shiseido’s Benefiance Eye Mask. It’s on the pricey end, but it claims many more benefits than just de-puffing. Rather than a gel or cream, this product contains concentrated treatment sheets that combat dark circles, wrinkles, and puffiness. There are a lot of positive reviews on the google about this one, I’m tempted to try it!

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5. Natural Nancy? You can also try two chamomile tea bags. My neighbor swears by these and her husband likes to ask her if she needs a teabag.

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*Disclaimer: don’t google image periorbital puffiness.

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Fall dresses are confusing

I am going to a wedding in a couple weeks and am trying to decide what to wear. Fall in the midwest is confusing. Sleeves? Sweater? Jacket? Pashmina? Tights? Closed toe/ open toe/ peep toe?

To add to the equation, I’m not a fan of dress repeating. Don’t get me wrong, I will wear the same thing every day if it is laying closest to me on the floor, but nice dresses are a different story. Weddings and special events are some of the rare times that my husband and I BOTH get fancy and are photo-worthy. I can’t be photo-worthy in the same dress every time.

All of this begs the question: to Rent the Runway or buy. This is tricky because some of the RTR dresses are expensive and it is tough to justify spending $100+ just to rent when you buy a dress to keep (and not that one though, they’re not for commoners!).

So here I am on the hunt for a dress that is appropriate for Fall, whatever temperature that is, and one that makes me look bangin’.

1. RTR: Robert Rodriguez Cap Sleeve Mini. This dress is awesome AND it looks just as awesome on a real person. Bonus: when you’re 5’2” ‘Mini’ just means it will fit you.

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2.  The Myne Estelle Lace Dress: Straight forward- classy and cute. Enough detail that accessorizing isn’t necessary. Caveat: One of those weird defying gravity bras will be needed.

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3. I fell in love with the Otis and Maclain Alex Dress the second I saw it… Jury’s out on the belt.

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4. Free People Lace Dress is ‘a lace and crochet dropwaist dress with raw edge pleated bottom hem’. Need they say more? ahhhhhh.

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5. Otis and Maclain’s Daria Dress is a new spin on LBD. There are so many ways to dress this up or down… so.many.options.

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What’s YOUR pick?

Grown- up bag in a grown- up world

My frayed, discolored, dog-hair magnet of a bag that I carried for work never bothered me much. It has always been a curious black hole: bobby pins cease to exist, things with caps come out without their caps, and house keys intermittently disappear and reappear. HOWEVER, everything changed one day when I walked into a work meeting and the various bags and totes I noticed around the room reminded me of damn Young Professional Pinterest Board. That day I told my husband I needed an adult bag.

To be clear, I still don’t plan on giving this bag its own seat or compartmentalizing its contents so therefore I cannot, in my right mind, invest in (and properly care for) something like this glorious magical unicorn type bag.

SO! Here are some options I’ve scouted:

1. Michael Kors Kempton Tote is a total YP swag bag. And with nylon and faux leather you can wipe that puppy down when you spill coffee, drop the mascara wand, or find dog drool on it. But, uh, don’t plan on buying the matching wallet unless you hate your money. It costs almost as much as the tote and your husband will ask the sales associate if it is made of gold.


2. Madewell’s Transport Tote is one classy mamajama. Apparently you can monogram it, but unless you are also sporting your Delta Delta Delta insignia I’d recommend you not be that girl.


3. The Cuy Leather Tote is another simple carry- all/ carry- daily bag. Crafted in Argentina with 100% local leather, this bag is sure to be the hippest of all officeland. ALSO- it comes in 8 colors… mmm, options.


OOTD Collection

I just realized that over the last year I have Instagrammed quite the Selfie Outfit Of The Day photo collection.

So I have decided to put all my past OOTD photos into one place, my blog- duh, in case I can’t think of anything to wear… aside from what I actually want to wear, which is always yoga pants.


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Water Bottles. Cool ones.

I am on the hunt for a cool water bottle because I’m taking a trendy workout class and I want some carry- on swag. And to stay hydrated, of course.

My top finds:

1. BKR, a 16 oz. glass water bottle with a non-toxic silicon sleeve. These sleeves come in so many colors you’ll probably google image every single one while your husband watches sports… (for the record, reese witherspoon carries red , jessica alba totes blue).

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2. KOR ONE is referred to as a Hydration Vessel, so of course it means trendy business. This gem is another BPA free, attached cap solution. Cool bonus: 1% of sales goes to support nature conservancy. Fancy AND philanthropic.

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3. The Bamboo Bottle is a total granola’s dream. Choose BPA free plastic or glass and customize with classic top, flip top, or hot liquid top… and voila. Green mean drinking machine. Water, that is.

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But of course I haven’t made up my mind yet…

Just for kicks, look at this lil’ guy:

New Wave Enviro Flip n’ Sip. Something tells me that at a 12 oz capacity, I’d be filling up after every flip n’ sip….

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I like options…

…so much so that I google every single one.

Welcome to my blog!

 so many options