In The Land of Pink and Poppy’s

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Romper: Nasty Gal Shoes & Necklace:  Kate Spade Cuff: Forever 21 Hat: H&M

So unless you completely deprive yourself of social media and or the news, 1 you’re probably not reading this and 2 you have probably missed the fact that all these So Cal rainstorms have brought some amazing backdrops perfect for a Saturday getaway and perfect for a Spring shoot! Driving down the 15 Frwy it’s hard not to stop to admire the golden hills sides taken over by the California State flower. Now I know why they call us the Golden State! Currently the hills side of Lake Elsinore have been painted gold by this little flower and it’s absolutely breathtaking.

While I probably should have reconsidered the shoe situation as the two blisters on my toes are reminders to not do that again- a romper was the perfect choice! Rompers are my go to ensemble for warmer weather as it is both practical and chic. Paired with a wide brimmed hat and ta da the perfect attire to welcome warmer weather! And what better combo that my favorite color and my favorite silhouette to welcome one of my favorite seasons. Granted Spring is officially not for a few more weeks- I appreciate mother nature’s justification for arriving basically fashionably early. Well done Mother Nature, well done.

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Comfy And Couture

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Top: H&M Shoes: APL Pants: Joe Jeans Jeggings Sunnies: Ray Ban

So it occurred to me as I walked my beloved Olivia around our lake a few weekends ago, Chanel and Valentino flats- as lovely as they are, are not the greatest true walking shoes. And that’s fine. I suppose they’ll last much longer if I don’t subject them to dirt and two miles on a daily basis. Alas, I started thinking about an article that I read around Christmas time highlighting one of Oprah’s favorite things. The article in question featured a new brand in the running shoe world taking over the social media accounts of fashion enthusiasts- APL. Short for Athletic Propulsion Laboratory. Once I saw this bubblegum shade of pink and the almost crochet like material they were designed with I knew if I were to reconsider tennis shoes these bad boys would be at the top of my list. And after a two mile walk in my pointed Rock Stud Valentino studs, the blisters on my feet were practically screaming at me to revisit the tennis shoe idea.

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Alas, my love for the athleisure look was born. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still a girly girl till the day I die, but I do appreciate there are options to welcome my kind to the world of comfiness and coziness. So naturally, when one gets a pair of shoes, one also has to get outfits to compliment. Shout out to H&M for helping me with this task by providing endless options of basics in my favorite shades of lavender, peach and of course pink! I’m looking forward to warmer days and opportunities to mix and match my new comfy shoes with some new basic pieces- and more importantly days of being blister free.

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APL-Short for Athletic Propulsion Laboratory, are literally some of the most comfy tennis shoes I’ve ever tried. I’m in love with the coziness of the crochet like material and can’t wait to get my next pair. Black, peach or baby blue? Or all of the above? Fun fact: these shoes were actually banned from the NBA because of the technology that improves one’s jumping ability. Won’t be giving that a try anytime soon unless I go to some sample sales but good to know it’s an option!

Do What You Love

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Top: Parker Bag: Kate Spade Shoes: Valentino Necklace: Betsy Johnson Skirt: H&M Glitter Sunnies: Miu Miu

Coincidentally, or perhaps not, I’ve been asked about my blog a lot recently. Whether it be someone bringing up a favorite blog article or just a favorite picture I would like to express a sincere thank you to my friends and family who have motivated me to get back at the thing that makes me happiest- fashion and blogging about it. And what better way than to talk about what I love most than the day before Valentines Day?!

Not only is fashion sure to take over my Facebook, and Insta feed due to New York Fashion Week descending upon us faster than you can say the devil wears Prada, but fashion is starting to devour my investment choices as well. As much as I love interior decorating- and investing in new fun furniture (until the glam room starts coming together) it’s time to invest in my already expansive wardrobe. I’ve already invested in key pieces. For example this red skirt I’m sure you’ve seen before for more holiday inspired outfits-4th of July too. But now it works perfect for this Valentines Day ensemble! Thank you H&M! Thank you for this fabulous staple piece that seems to be the answer to all of my Holiday ensemble needs.

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Who needs a Valentine when you have Valentino?!

Now, the fun comes in investing in accessories! Which again is perfect considering I’m putting together an accessory room. This season my accessory of choice was this uber cute heart bag by Kate Spade. No doubt, just like the red skirt I’m sure I’ll find great ways to style it all year round. Some of my co-wokers even highlighted how perfectly it will match my obligatory mouse ears for my Disney adventures- cause ya know that’s an equally important factor to consider when deciding on accessory statements. And probably another borderline fashion addiction to be discussed in another post. Alas, ladies and fashion gents it’s good to be back! Thanks for inspiring me dear loved ones to once again resume this thing I love the most- and ya know it really is true. When you do what you love you really never work a day in your life.

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I’m not the only one who turned to Kate Spade for Valentines Day Style! How cute is my dear friend and fellow blogger Kerry Miller of KLM Fashion Style’s Kate Spade bow bag? 

Not Your Typical LBD

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Dress: Lush Hat: Saks Bag: Coach: Gladiators: Steve Madden Sunnies: Miu Miu

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For nearly 10 years, I’ve been subjected to a career dominated by rules that restrict my wardrobe to the color black 5 days out of the week. Which isn’t bad. I mean I suppose I could be forced to where an unflattering uniform, but that’s never been my style. In fact I am eternally grateful to my mom for recognizing this even in my middle school days. True story, in 6th grade my school thought it would be brilliant to level the fashion playing field and make everyone wear those dreadful navy and white uniforms. Which, don’t get me wrong, navy and white works for some people. I just prefer options is all. How is one supposed to use fashion as an art form if you limit their palette to only 2 colors? I got out of that predicament before I was even put into it by my mom telling my school a dress code was against our religion.

Back to present day. Alas, on my days off I put in a diligent effort to infuse my wardrobe with as much color as possible. But, I can’t help but have my days where I too want to indulge in one of the fashion world’s chicest ensembles, aka the little black dress. Traditionally believed to be reserved for those fancy nights out on the town, or funerals the fashion world has seized this iconic wardrobe staple and made it appropriate for even the most casual days. And the best part? It’s literally like a blank slate! You can infuse whatever colorful accessories or shoes you choose. So for color enthusiasts such as myself it’s still a viable option. Today I opted to pair my newest LBD addition with my favorite Steve Madden gladiator sandals. It also made the perfect backdrop to debut my new Coach Tea Rose Appliqué Dinky bag. I know, I know, florals for Spring. Groundbreaking.

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Olivia had to join me for today’s fashion adventure.

Spring, And a Few of My Favorite Things

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I know it’s been Spring now officially for a few weeks, but it’s taken about that much time to get sufficiently prepared. While my wardrobe is always adequately supplied with Spring staples such as colorful ballet flats, fun skirts in vibrant colors and accessories to compliment, it was my home that needed a little TLC.

As I approach the 1 year anniversary of being a homeowner, I couldn’t help but notice I needed to add some Spring touches to my stock of home goods. Thus I’ve been on a constant hunt for floral accents….(insert sarcastic Devil Wears Prada remark of, flowers for spring how ground breaking comment here.) But being the girly flower child that I am how could I not embrace one of Spring’s signature mascots?

While I could fill up this post and write endless ode’s to what I love most about Spring, I’ve decided to simply itemize my favorites instead.

  • Finally, the girl who loves bright colors has an excuse to embrace that pink. Whether it be lipstick, nail polish, ballerina flats or heels…during Spring, every day this girl wears pink!
  • Ok, sometimes I do like to change up the previous comment and add my splash of color in the form of periwinkle, or even mint green i.e my favorite Chanel ballet flats.
  • Speaking of shoes, I feel like Spring and Summer are when my shoe game is strongest. I love ballet flats, I love jewels and I love colors…it’s literally like Spring was made for me.
  • An excuse to play in the dirt! Lately, I’ve been exploring my talents as a gardener, or lack thereof in the case of my hydrangeas. But the good news is my Lincoln roses are off to a great start! And daisies! More to come on my blog soon about my gardening adventures, and helpful tips I’ve come across on Pinterest.
  • My house is starting to look like an ode to Shabby chic glam. Especially with my mirrored furniture, all quickly becoming accented by silk floral arrangements.
  • The longer days! Whether I’m walking around the lake with my precious Olivia, or catching up on a good book (currently reading ‘Cupcakes and Cashmere’) while sipping on tea in my back yard, I love to enjoy as much of that sunshine as possible!
  • Watching the world literally come to life! Everywhere I look, flowers are blooming, birds are chirping and everything just looks so new! I love that. Dear Mother Nature, this Spring, you seem be working over time to paint the world so pretty and I appreciate you.

More to come and highlight with each Spring ensemble I’m sure! But in the mean time, take the time to smell or snap the beauty around you dear readers! Life is most definitely too short not to appreciate those little things.

Still Not Over the Overall Game

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Overalls: H&M Shoes: French Connection Necklace: Charlotte Russe Blouse: Equipment Sunglasses: Ray Bans Hat: Saks

If I had to say there was one piece of clothing that has been a staple in my wardrobe since the beginning, I’d have to say I’ve been pretty committed to the overall game since day 1. From the toddler days and Oshkosh Begosh (totally misspelled that, please don’t judge.) To the good ol’ days when Old Navy ruled my fashion game, overalls have been my go to ensemble for casual days.

My styling skills however, just like the coffee I drink as an adult compared to the cup o’ diabetes I would consume as an 8th grader have only gotten stronger. At least I would like to think. I recall fondly pairing my overalls in high school with an Abercrombie or Hollister top. Add that to a pair of cargo pants, and some white out on your back pack proclaiming your love for a boy band or Blink 182 and bam! You have the guide to so cal style for a high schooler circa 2000. Although my love for the Backstreet Boys remains the same, my styling skills and investment into labels and pieces have dramatically changed. Thank God. Not to say I still don’t have a special place in my heart for Hollister, I do. But I’ve learned it’s so much more fun to play with pieces regardless of the label on the tag. While yes, I do love my labels, it’s not so much the prestige that attracts me but rather the quality. I’ve always been horrible at math but whenever investing in a high quality piece of clothing or accessory I like to consider cost per wear. I’ve found if it’s something I’m going to get endless amounts of wear out of, the more sound the investment. Once I found a $1500 Akris Punto coat for only $300. That has been a go to coat for the past 3 years! One of my equally stylish friends once pointed out that that coat was at a point of being literally less than a dollar a day! And I plan on making it pennies!

Another factor I like to take into consideration is timeless appeal. Like, will this piece stand the test of time in my closet? I’ve come to find that the more simple a piece, the more likely it will last countless seasons in my closet without blatantly jeopardizing the dreaded title of being an “Outfit Repeater.” (Insert cringe here.) When it comes to overalls, I can literally foresee them lasting forever in my closet. Because even if the time comes when I can no longer justify them as a ready to wear, blog worthy statement piece. they’ll always be my go to chores around the house, let’s paint some walls or plant a garden attire. Which works perfect because I’ve taken on the hobby of gardening as well. Pictures and blog to come soon to recap that adventure!

 

Flower Child

One of the really cool things about my professional career is I have been blessed with opportunities to experience Southern California. In addition to expanding my network and meeting countless amazing and just overall wonderful people, I’ve also been introduced to destinations I only thought possible in movies and dreams. The desert led me to Salvation Mountain, and today to a San Diego gem.

My “time” in San Diego was amazing. If it wasn’t for the traffic and a better opportunity career wise in the IE I would have re-considered staying. But alas, in addition to leaving behind peers I consider family, and the lovely SD Style Bloggers I also left with some amazing travel tips for exploring. I knew San Diego was lovely far before I ever explored behind a keyboard and the hash tags. But never had I dreamed a beautiful destination existed. The dream. The wonderful dream in which I am referring to is a little ol’ place called the Flower Fields. Nestled along the hillsides in Carlsbad is a place that has provided equally magical memories for several of my friends and family members. How I have lived my whole life in Southern California and only just found out about this place just 2 years ago, truly baffles me. Naturally, the minute I found out about the Flower Fields, I started making plans to go but as things sometimes go, timing never worked out and next thing you know it’s May and the season’s over.

Today though, the stars aligned and it just worked out to take the one hour drive. My boyfriend joined me on the adventure, and aided as my photographer for the day. I was just a tad concerned the weather would be cold but it couldn’t have been a more lovely day.  While I did work this outfit to work with a coat, the second I pulled into the parking lot and stepped outside, I knew it would not be needed. Which was a sigh of relief actually because one of my favorite details about this Free People ensemble is the lace on the sleeves.

And that perhaps is one of my favorite things about being a So Cal Fashionista. The ability to work an outfit to cater to a sudden fluctuation in weather. While I never was able to master trig, this was truly a talent that I have been able to utilize. Why is Fashion 101 not a subject in High School? Anyways, if you ever find yourself with time, and a sense of adventure, I strongly recommend the Flower Fields. Not only are there endless photo opportunities, but the serenity of the flowers blowing in the wind combined with the majesty of the ocean view, it makes for a truly spiritual experience. Well worth the 2 year wait and I can’t wait to go back!

New Year, New Me

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Glasses: Prada Shoes: Christian Louboutin Pants: DVF Blouse: Theory

Your eyes do not deceive you, I have finally traded my blonde locks in for what I can only describe as a strawberry bronde. I have been stopped a few times since the transition that was at least 12 years in the making and thus I must give a shout out to my miracle worker of a hair stylist, Diego at La Mode salon in Menifee, CA. I showed him a picture of former blonde bombshell Ashley Tisdale who also fairly recently joined the ginger club and I am beyond thrilled, he practically matched it! Master of color he is.

Once I looked in the mirror after the transformation I couldn’t help but smile and think of my sister who has literally been on my case to change my signature blonde locks since I started the highlight process almost 12 years ago. I would like to point out it took a few years to perfect my blonde, which was perhaps the main reason it took so long to consider a new color. But trust me, I’m glad I waited and didn’t just bleach my hair right off the bat. And thank you to my old stylist Jenette for educating me on the proper way to transition from dark to light without doing permanent damage.

Alas, a new hair style isn’t the only thing this fashionista has been looking forward too. All this blustery weather has me counting down the days till I can bust out my favorite Spring pieces. Skirts, dresses, floral prints and pastels….GAH! I’m counting down the days!

“Grunge Was The Worse Part of My Life”

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Hat: H&M Necklace: Forever 21 Ring: Some random Haute Look Sale Sandals: Elizabeth and James                                             Shorts: Free People Top: Vince

So I was watching a documentary the other day on the editors of Vogue. And while they all had intriguing things to say about ground breaking editorials of the past century, one the things that stood out most was one editor (forgive me I forgot her name, but it wasn’t Anna Wintour) and her loathing of the grunge phase. So much effort was spent on establishing this phase in fashion history, even for some to look back and say that it was the worse period of their lives!

Then I started thinking. Is that ever going to be me? I am hardly a prestigious writer. I have never been published in Vogue (yet.) But is that part of the initiation rights of being a well renowned writer? Giving up what you believe in? It would seem so. For me part of this journey of becoming a blogger was inspired by my short lived internship as a Fashion Editor for Orangecounty.com. They were Roxy and surf and I gave up that life in 9th grade. (Partly because I’ve never surfed in my life and I was called out as a poser. Oh the vocabulary of my generation <insert giggles here>) It wasn’t me. My editor knew it, I knew it thus I gave myself my own platform. Where I would never be subjected to force out an article or force inspiration. Am I going to look back on these posts one day and think to myself “God, what was I thinking?” God I hope not. Truth be told, the only fashion phase I’ve ever gone through and regretted were more so of the beauty kind than the fashion kind. Blue eye shadow works on some, for me I end up looking like Mimi from Drew Carry. I wish someone would have told me this when I went down that road in high school. Alas, Britney wore it so I had to try it. She wins the “who wore it best look” on that one.

While these days my style is much more toned down in comparison to previous years I still feel like I’m coming in to my own. And I don’t regret the decisions that will ultimately determine the direction of my next fashion phase, even if it means trying out the all pink on pink look. I do still own my hot pink bubblegum pants! Either way since I’ve come into this whole concept of doing things on my own terms in my own way, I highly doubt I’ll be that person that looks back and says “that worse time of my life.” Nobody has forced me to do anything. My mistakes and triumphs are my own and like with everything else I prefer it that way.

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There’s No Place Like Home: And Nothing Worse Than Looking For A Home

Top: H&M Jeans: 7 Jeans (Which I bought for an amazing deal of only $19.99 at Saks Fifth Avenue OFF 5TH!) Shoes: Valentino Rock Studs Sunnies: Rayban

Top: H&M Jeans: 7 Jeans (Which I bought for an amazing deal of only $19.99 at Saks Fifth Avenue OFF 5TH!)                          Shoes: Valentino Rock Studs Sunnies: Rayban

I feel absolutely horrible for not having the opportunity to update you, my beloved loyal readers on all of the great Spring pieces and sales I’ve come across as of recently. But I’ve been dealing with the headache of car repairs (which prevented me from participating in all the LA Fashion Week Festivities, never been so bummed in my life) and the migraine inducing stress of purchasing a home. The good news is I’m officially in Escrow as of yesterday. Yay!

Now it’s time for me to vent for just a moment. The market these days according to my real estate agent is not what it used to be. I imagine prior to the market crashing a few years ago, there was a sense of urgency and things actually got done in a timely efficient manner because people involved in Real Estate actually had the luxury of solely making a living off of just their Real Estate job. But alas, even I have co-workers that also dabble in Real Estate and show homes in between shifts. I never thought much of it until we put our first offer in and did’t hear anything back for nearly a month. Ok, I take that back. What we heard was a nauseating never ending merry go round of “I’ll have an answer for you Friday.” Oh, actually, it’s a bank holiday so we’ll let you know Wednesday. Actually, nope just kidding Friday. Oh no my assistant is going on a 3 day vacation I’ll let you know next week. I’ll let you know Wednesday. I’ll let you know Thursday by 11. Finally, after a month of being strung along by the listing agent on the first property (I am extremely considering filing a formal complaint on this guy) he sent us a counter offer. Great we thought! We’re moving forward! Granted this home was a short sale. Had been on the market since November. It was a beautiful home and initially a fantastic deal. Dream come true and my boyfriend referred to it as the “Golden Egg” home. Of course it looked like a bit of a fixer upper. And since it had not been occupied in months plumbing and electrical were a concern, amongst a slew of other things. But this house would have been worth it for the listing price of $235 k. But then we were told that there was a lien against the home and we would have to pay $6,000 in back owed HOA fees (how HOA fees that are only $45 a month accumulate to that number is mind boggling to me.) But we were willing to pay it. The listing agent also advised in the beginning that the reason no prior offers had been accepted was due to the fact that because it was a bank owned home, the bank was actually only going to accept an offer higher than the listing price because it needed that to profit. So we made an offer I believe of something in the ball park of $250,000. We were told upon that offer that our’s was the best offer made. So the whole time we waited we thought we stood a chance. The bank was going to make what it needed to net, and we were going to get our home. But then, again after a month of being strung along we were told that the bank was actually going back to the first people that made an offer to see if they still wanted the home. But yet we were still sent that counter offer, in which in addition to the $6,000 extra fee necessary to remove the lien we would be responsible for all repairs including the process of dealing with termites.

Our loan is FHA, which has a ton of requirements and home inspections necessary to protect the buyer and the bank from getting into a home that has the potential for the roof collapsing. Which makes sense. We were advised by our Real Estate agent that if we wanted to accept the counter to be cautious of the fact that there could be a possibility that we could pay for all those repairs to make the home FHA acceptable, and if something were to go wrong in Escrow, we would not get reimbursed for the money and essentially lose out on the home.

At that point we moved on. We were never told the bank went with the first people. In fact we have reason to believe because of this lousy Listing Agent our offer was never submitted to the bank. If there was another offer he could have told us in the beginning “Sorry, there is another offer on the table.” Why the bank would decide to go with an offer that doesn’t even net them a profit, which is what the listing agent alluded to in the beginning is beyond me. And only makes sense if they were unaware of our offer to begin with. But no, this listing agent chose to stress us out, and lead us on. The good news is I’m certain I lost a few pounds due to all the stress.

The next home didn’t have the plantation shutters, or the beautiful glass shower, but it had a huge back yard and hundreds more square feet. This home was beautiful and had a spiral stair case. I loved it. We put our offer in on a rainy Sunday afternoon (apparently rainy weekends are the best time to look because nobody is out looking.) We were the only offer! Yes! We had a chance. Or so we thought until we were told the seller was dealing with recovering from surgery related to his cancer of the esophagus. Yikes we thought. Poor guy. We said a prayer for him and his quick recovery. But he’s not recovering well, and in the time it took this Listing Agent to realize it wasn’t going to be a few day recovery process had already received several offers. Eventually, he removed the listing. But that offer lasted a few weeks of just waiting and hoping the seller would recover. Last word on that was that the poor guy was having nothing but set backs and we wouldn’t know until he was well. Why on earth then (I am sympathetic for the man but still have left over frustration from the last situation) would you list a property that isn’t ready to sell?

Meanwhile, while we were waiting to hear back from these properties prices are going up, the weather is getting better and the competition is growing. The last weekend we went out literally there was another couple trailing every home we went to. There is something rewarding though about being the competition for couples well into their 40’s. Anyways, the last search resulted in us finding our home. It is beyond beautiful with a view of the lake. I plan on turning that room in to my office. The closet space is endless. The backyard beautifully landscaped and the perfect backdrop for future blog shoots. My boyfriend teased me and said while I don’t have a picket white fence I have a beautiful vinyl fence. That was only a back and fourth of one day before my amazing Real Estate Agent convinced the seller he should sell the home to us. Only a day into Escrow, but I feel like the worse is behind us. Now it’s just a matter of getting paper work into the hands of the right people and passing inspections. I suppose this journey might seem ordinary to some, but I’m a millennial and I am part of a generation that expects instant gratification, instant answers. Sorry not sorry that is what I was raised to expect.

Naturally, now all I can think about is interior decorating. Pinterest is my new best friend! Follow me Girlygirl0867! I have one Grandma passing on crystal and gold dish wear to me and another one shopping Estate Sales for deals on must have home goods. I have the best family! We’re hoping for a 30 day escrow! Fingers crossed. But the good news is this journey is over, and we have our dream home. Now I can breathe and get back to doing the thing I love most, blogging.

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