Oh taste and see that Nordstrom…is good!

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The day has finally arrived! Nordstrom has invaded Jacksonville and we’re glad! I remember when I first saw the signs at the St. John’s Town Center hailing the news that the retail giant was making a home there, I squealed with delight. Then to make it even better I scored an opportunity for a private pre-opening tour through my savvy and shameless Instagram stalking LOL! So let’s see what we shall see and who’s who!

We began our tour with a quick check in and a brief overview of the Nordstrom philosophy and it’s culture. Then we were briefed on the flow of events for the afternoon, then we were on the move! We started the tour in the main shoe salon where we were seated which was pure candy for the eyes and feet…you all know I’m a shoe girl, so I was in heaven!

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We breezed through the beauty center which was being equipped with the some of the most sought after names in beauty.
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The gift section was filled with great and wtty ideas for home decor, there’s something for everyone to be had here
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Men’s fashion was in no short supply
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And for the kiddos in your life, they have THE most adorable items
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The photo above is a mini play area to keep the little ones busy while you shop, how great is that?
After all that shopping we were in need of refreshments and boy did they have that covered! We were treated to custom cocktails and yummy snacks in their beautiful restaurant, Bazille.
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My girl Trice at High Heels and Good Meals was my partner in crime on this excursion. The bartender insisted that we have more than one. .. who were we to refuse.
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And if you just need a quick jolt of Java, don’t worry they’ve got you. An on site coffee bar with fragrant brews and energizing spritzers. I tried the orange pineapple and it was delicious!
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The day ended with a gift bag that was filled with goodies to take home and enjoy
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Am I a Nordstrom convert, sure am, no need to twist my arm. They’ve earned my loyalty and my dollars! ! Thank you Nordstrom you’ve got a fan for life!

Fashion Break: Say hello to who I use to be

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Dear Younger Self,

I’m so sorry I forgot about you! I’m sorry that I forgot how fearless you were, how fabulous you’ve always been, how full of life you were! I forgot all about your larger than life spirit and how it oozed itself on everyone you encountered. I didn’t remember how unstoppable you were and allowed nothing to slow you down. Yes, you experienced hurt but you always knew how to shake the dust off and get back on the road again. You never defined yourself by other’s perceptions of you. They always tried to subdue that wild spirit but you fought tooth and nail to remain apologetically you. You were clear in who you were and where you were headed. Then love came along, or what I thought was love and everything changed. I started listening to them more and you less. I drowned out your voice because you were too strong, you would not accept anything less than what you deserved. You would tell me to be alone is better than this; but I didn’t want to be alone so I put you away. I didn’t allow you to speak. Please forgive me for stuffing you in a box and hiding you in the closet, I didn’t know how to be me and love them too so I sacrificed you on the altar of acceptance.

Why did I wait so long? Why did I let them tell me that I wasn’t enough? It had gone on for so long that I started believing it was true, after a while I just didn’t have the strength to leave, so I stayed and eventually I didn’t even remember you existed.

It has taken this ultimate act of betrayal to finally wake me up and go back to get you. Do I even remember where I put you? After so after many years are you still there? I retreat into the last place I left you and there you are, right where I left you.  A little confused by the events of my life but even sadder that I didn’t come for you sooner. You told me that although you were young, you were wise and could have saved me years of pain if only I had chosen me instead of them. I am sorry that I didn’t realize that you loved me more than anyone ever could and as long as we had each other, we had everything we needed. I’m ready to begin again, this time with you right by my side. No more hiding you away because someone doesn’t like how strong you are, how bright you shine….We’re a package deal, you get beauty, brains AND boldness or you can go get someone basic and bland. The choice is yours, we are one and I’m never leaving her again!

 

All my love

The Me I use to be

Get ready to wait

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Do you know how patiently I have waited for the weather to be cool enough for me to wear this jacket? Since mid Summer…an eternity I tell ya! And technically it still isn’t cool enough to wear this outside comfortably however I will be sitting in a highly air conditioned hospital waiting room, so my goal is to stay warm, stylish and comfortable while waiting.
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I thrifted this camo jacket at Goodwill for next to nothing and I have so many plans for it. Shorts, skirts, leggings…oh my. I’m giddy thinking about it. But today the look is comfortable chic. I cannot be all buttoned up while sitting around waiting, I will be there for hours. But I also cannot abide by being a slob either. Have you seen what people wear to hospitals these days? I understand that it’s not a fashion show and you or someone you know may be ill or in pain but please slick on a little lipstick if you can and some decent clothes that are not pajama bottoms. Sorry, I go off on these little rants about things like this.
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I am wearing a white wife beater under the jacket just in case I get overheated and want to take the jacket off (I highly doubt it, they crank that air up to kill germs) and some black leggings( I had to nix the leggings, they were really thin and you could see through them. NO BUENO) black skinny jeans so I can move around freely. I usually find a large area of one of the comfy couches they have in the waiting room and settle in with Netflix, water and snacks until I get called.
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My black quilted slip on sneakers from Target and a piece of bling around my neck to push me over the top and make all the people stare and say she’s doing way too much, LOL. Done! Mission accomplished once again.

All black and blue: colorblocked

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I have been itching to wear this dress again! I haven’t worn it since early Spring because it is made of such a thick material, it was just too darn hot to wear. But I also purchased a pair of shoes on clearance that matched perfectly from  ShoeDazzle with my VIP membership. Yes it is totally matchy matchy and I totally do not care! I love mixing prints however the mix has to make sense to me for me to wear it.

I’m an advocate of pulling your wardrobe together for the week on Saturday or Sunday but lately I haven’t been in the mood. But this weekend I actually accomplished getting my entire week planned out, it does make mornings so much smoother to know that my clothes are ironed, hung up and ready to wear. I even do it for my kids. I’ve had way to many unplanned things to come up early in the morning to miss this step with them.

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The dress is a Ross Dress for Less outfit, you know how much I love Ross for Less right? They have some the best inexpensive work wear items ever. Whenever I’m looking for a dress, I head there before I go anywhere!

Weekend

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Believe it or not weekend attire is kinda difficult for me, I am always torn between wanting to be casual and comfortable or wearing the stuff that would not be considered office appropriate, which may or may not include heels. This weekend was actually a no brainer since Saturday I needed to grocery shop and heels are out of the question while pushing a cart up and down the aisles the kids in tow. Sunday was pretty much also a no heels occasion because the kids and I were headed to a birthday party and that mean lots of chasing Tatiana down.

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Saturday I decided on shorts since it will eventually be too chilly to wear them (although here in Florida people wear them all year long) with a striped shirt and my new loves, my quilted sneakers from Target. Can I tell you how much I love them and desire to wear them with everything! What I love most about them is that although sneakers are very casual these have a chicness about them that I will be able to dress up a bit while still remaining casual.

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It finally felt like it was cool enough to throw on a pair of jeans, so I grabbed my destroyed boyfriend jeans also from Target. I don’t think I’ve had jeans on since early June or so, it felt good slipping into these relaxed favorites. I added a graphic tee from Old Navy along with my sneakers and as my shirt says…voila. I did slip around my neck a little piece of bling from Walmart (their statement necklaces are ridiculously awesome and inexpensive) to dress my neckline up.

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I was extremely comfortable yet still had a pulled together look that was perfect.

 

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Fashion Break: Respect the process

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I’ve been kinda quiet over here lately which quite frankly is nothing new. I haven’t kept on a regular posting schedule in so long. But I’m also posting less on my social media outlets too. I have so much to say however most of it is not appropriate to talk about publicly without being labeled as oversharing (aka telling all my business), so I don’t talk at all! Sometimes I feel I should be open and honest because of all the positive feedback that I have received from people going through the same thing. Then other times I feel all exposed so I close up, because I fear I’ve said too much.

I guess the truth of what I should do lies somewhere in the middle of all this but what’s real is, I’m HURTING ! My pain is raw, loud and unrelenting at times then quiet and simmering under the surface. Divorce has taken the wind out of my sails and I feel like I’m just moving through life, trying to get through another day with my soul intact.  I’m not depressed, I’m just sad…disillusioned with the knowledge that everything I thought I knew about someone, I discovered I don’t.

Most days I fight feeling the hurt that has engulfed my heart however I’ve grown tired of pretending to make people comfortable. I just want to be, I want to be free to mourn the loss of a life I thought would be mine forever. I want to be able to figure out how to cope with all the information that I now have and knowledge of what is yet to come without worrying about how strong I’m supposed to be.

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So after reading GG Instagram post yesterday, I’m going to respect my sadness! I’m going to give it permission to exist! I have a right to my feelings and I will respect that! I will get over it when I do, I will let God do the work that has to be done in me so I can truly heal and not hide the hurts. I don’t know what that looks like, I don’t know what that feels like, I just know it will happen if I’m open to the work. This time…I am!

Like a nightgown but better, so much better

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Oh so you can’t wear maxis that are as comfortable as your favorite nightgown and just as soft to work? Or you can but just on Fridays? Well it’s Thursday and I can everyday!!! This dress really is like a nightgown, its unbelievable how comfortable it is, I have forgotten I’m dressed and at work (Ok so maybe I haven’t forgotten I’m at work but at least I feel good) I just added this pink blazer to make it client appropriate and will switch into heels once the client arrives (right now I’m in flat sandals).

I was rushing out the door so I forgot my earrings (I feel so naked) but I did however remember a necklace and my always present watch.

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I’ve got a full day of work then Open House for my little one immediately after so this outfit will earn it’s keep by allowing me to be comfortable and stylish throughout my day.

I know you all who love Fall are eagerly awaiting cooler temps but I do not approve of that message. I’m on team forever Summer. You can keep your hoodies, pumpkin spice lattes and such to yourself.I will continue to chill with my sweet iced tea and ice cream cones! And yes, I will continue to wear white and cutoff denim shorts because it’s Florida and I’m a rebel!

 

Orange is hot but can never replace black

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Orange is my color! I’ve always been an orange lover, my apartment is actually decorated in accents of orange because I love it so much.  It’s just as powerful as red but happier I think. Now I love me some orange but it will never replace black for me.
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I found this cute little dress in Ross and the cut is not my usually style, it was in my color, so I had to try it on. LOVED IT!! It’s a quilted material and what’s not to love about a zipper up the front?
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This dress required nothing more but grabbing a pair of nude sandals, adding a necklace for punch and because I love green paired with orange I put on my new earrings that Trice gave me for my birthday. Done and perfect! These are the kind of looks that make me so so happy anyday but especially on a Monday.
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What’s your easy peasy, go to look that always makes you look effortlessly polished?

Please forgive the blurry pics, I’m still teaching my 9 year old son to take pics and he’s doing fantastic but I’m not ready to pull out the good camera just yet. We are working with the cell phone still. 

 

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Saturday was my birthday and I am so grateful to God for allowing the privilege of living another year!  I enjoyed my birthday weekend very much,  me than I thought I would.

 

It started on Thursday when my boss invited me to lunch to celebrate since I was taking Friday off. It was a nice,  relaxing time of eating and just catching up on fun stuff. My meal was simply delicious!

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Friday was spent at the beach. .. my happy place!  It was hot but I didn’t mind,  I love the beach so much it only adds to the adoration,  LOL.

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wpid-20140822_112917.jpg My evening consisted of having a yummy burger at dinner.

The actual day,  I just did my usual,  cleaning,  laundry and lounging until I met with this cutie for dinner.

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We dined at the Wine Cellar, taking advantage of the Eat Up Downtown food extravaganza that was going on. The food was great but I’m gonna let Trice elaborate further on her blog about the restaurant since that is what she does best! !

 

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yep dessert number two!

yep dessert number two!

 

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I can truly say I was blessed with an amazing birthday weekend and I’m nothing but thankful!

 

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I’m ready to see what this new year of life will bring me.

 

Fashion Break: Celebrating my curves

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This morning while brushing my teeth I did something that’s unusual for me,  I stood in my full length mirror and looked at my naked body. No big deal normally but what was different was that for the first time in a very long time,  I appreciated it!  I look at myself everyday but I am hyper critical and pick myself apart from head to toe. Some days I can’t seem to find one good thing to say about my body. … NOT TODAY!
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Today I saw myself the way I really am,  not perfect but a beautiful brown healthy woman. I saw a body that is strong enough to give birth to six children,  survive 3 major surgeries,  2 c-sections and still healthy enough to run after a six year old in her 50 ‘ s (and I do mean run). I’m a little over a week away from turning 51 years old and I’m extremely grateful that God has saw fit to extend my life this long.
I’ve always been satisfied with my facial features for the most part,  I’m aging beautifully so I have no complaints but my body not so much. I’ve had large thighs all my adult life and since those six babies,  I’ve developed what I call a “kangaroo pouch” which I hated. However upon looking myself over this morning,  I declared out loud that I look good. And I do!  I will love this body that God gave me,  I will appreciate the strength it possesses and celebrate the beauty that it holds.