High Five for Friday

happy friday and happy halloween! i've never really been into halloween, although i'll always take advantage of large variety pack bags of candy. if i were dressing up this year, i would absolutely be a cat. that's just a no-brainer. 

here's a look back at some of my favorite things from this past week:

1. we had a beautiful indian summer weekend in chicago. mike and i made sure to take full advantage of the beautiful weather. so we brought a blanket over to the harbor to enjoy the sun and catch a beautiful view of the skyline. 

2. on the subject of being outside, i discovered this weekend that there is a mini golf course not terribly far from my apartment. i swear i learn something new about the city every day. we had a wildly aggressive friendly mini golf competition with some friends, complete with two hole-in-one's by yours truly. unfortunately, mike and i lost, although i'm not entirely convinced that the score-keeper was accurate (*cough* our opponent *cough*). 

3. i made the switch from summer to fall/winter in my closet one evening this week. there's something about cleaning out and rearranging that makes everything feel new and fresh. i was also made aware of the fact that my entire wardrobe for the next 6-ish months is black and grey. so, there's that.

4. the housewarming party (previously mentioned in a post) is planned and happening! texts/emails have been sent (remember the days when you had to actually call a friend to invite them to something?), pinterest-browsing for appetizers has commenced, and the very real need to clean the house is even more real. 

5. this week has been one of catching up for me, after being out of town last week. while there's been a lot going on, it's felt good to check things off my list and be productive. i'm definitely looking forward to the weekend!

how has your week been? link up below and tell me about it! 



an outfit made out of staples is probably my favorite kind of outfit. it's super easy to put together and has a sort of effortless feel to it. on any given day, you'll find me in some variation of this - jeans, a tee, and a sweater. the accessories vary the most. sometimes it's heeled booties, sometimes it's loafers. if i'm looking for a little extra something, i'll toss in a statement necklace. if i'm feeling a bit more low-key, i'll just layer some delicate necklaces. when you have a simple base like that, it's easy to dress it up or dress it down, depending on the occasion or what you're feeling that day. so, staples are good.

speaking of staples, my roommates and i had a pretty horrifying conversation the other night about injuries caused by simple, everyday things. i actually could not tell you how we got on the topic of it, but i truly wish we never had. there was talk of staples, a pencil, an axe (you can ask my sister about that one), and a dog's mouth, amongst other things. i'll go ahead and let your imagination do the work on those. trust me, you don't want to hear that stories. especially if you're about to eat tomato soup. (which one of my roommate's was making while telling an awful story and it just sort of ruined it for me).

this post brought to you by the spirit of halloween, i guess? 

sweater | Marshall's
jeans | Gap
booties | Target (similar)
bag | Vince Camuto via Nordstrom Rack
necklace | J.Crew Factory 


Beauty Favorites

whew! it's been a minute since i've done a beauty post, but that's not for a lack of good beauty products. just like my clothes change with the seasons, so do my most-used beauty products, color choices, etc. here are some of my favorite beauty products this fall:

while shopping with my sister recently, i told her that i wanted to pop into Sephora quick to look for a new lip color. you'd think i'd told her i just won the mega millions lottery and was planning to give her half. immediately, the, 'oooooh! what are you looking for?' and 'oh my gosh, you have to try this!' exclamations started rollin' in. lucky for me, she's tried basically every product in the store (maybe not quite, but close), so i can say one or two words and she'll know exactly what i want and where to find it. 

like i said, i was looking for a new lip color when i stumbled on the Naked2 Basics palette. i'd heard it was beautiful, but hadn't seen it for myself yet. i opened up the sample and knew that i had to have it. it's made up of gorgeous neutral tones that are great on their own or pretty mixed with the Naked2 palette (or other eyeshadows!). so, i've used it everyday since. i like it to create a 'barely there' eyeshadow look. 
i've mentioned my love for Revlon's Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stains before, and that love still prevails. i've been using Honey, which is a pretty mauve-y pink. i love the lightness of the stain and it adds just enough color, while also moisturizing my lips. 
for the most part, i use Julep's Ink Gel Eyeliner (which seems to no longer be on their website), but i received the Gel Eye Glider in a box and it works just as beautifully. it goes on super smooth and creates a bolder line for me than when i use the ink gel eyeliner. 

i've also been using Urban Decay's 24/7 Velvet Glide on Eye Pencil in Plushie on days when i'm feeling particularly adventurous. the deep purple shade is rich and adds enough color without making me feel costume-y or overdone.
you'll rarely catch me with bare finger or toe nails, so it makes sense that nail polish would be included. i tend to go back and forth between brands. i'll get on an OPI kick for awhile, and then switch to Julep or Essie for a bit. OPI has been my go-to as of late (their color selection is great!) so i picked up a few new colors. i was looking for rich tones and a good neutral. the neutral is Don't Bossa Nova Me Around (currently on my fingers) and the blue is I Saw...U Saw...We Saw...Warsaw (currently on my toes).
i was complaining to Kate that my nail polish chips so easily and she reminded me of a little trick using CND's Vinylux polish for a longer-laster manicure. the most neutral shade of Vinylux i currently have is Cake Pop, so i used that as my base coat, followed by one coat of the neutral OPI shade. the color lasted twice as long as it normally does, and it made the neutral color pop with the slightest tint of pink, which turned out beautiful. 
what are some of your favorite products lately?


High Five for Friday

happy friday! with travel this week, it feels like i went from friday-friday with nothing in-between. hey, i'll take it. 

here's a look back at some of my favorite things from this week:

1. i spent the week in North Carolina with my sister, nephew, and mom. it was nice to hang with the girls and to get lots of quality time with David. he's at such a fun age now - smiling all the time and discovering something new at every turn. i'm glad i get to see them in just a few weeks again!
at David's first pumpkin patch!
2. if there's one thing my mom, sister, and i do well, it's shop. we ran errands a couple days and i was able to stock up on some great sweaters for the fall and winter. i've been on a mission to up my sweater collection and that i did. like, had to carry one on with me on the plane yesterday because my bag was too full, did. 

3. Kate cut and colored my hair and i'm obsessed. they're both exactly what i wanted! it's been years since i've had my hair this short, so it's been fun to try new ways to style it. the hint of red is a fun change, too!

4. after David was in bed one evening, Kate and i decided we needed to watch Hocus Pocus. tell me you remember that movie! it was surprising to us to be able to recall scenes and lines before they happened, considering it's been at least 10 years since either have seen it. 

5. over the last few years, i've become quite the anxious flyer. i don't know what changed, but i dread getting on an airplane these days. these last two flights were some of the best i've had in awhile, so it was nice to have that for a change! heck, who wouldn't enjoy this view:

how has your week been? link up below and tell me about it!


Style + Function

if you ask me, style and function go hand in hand. especially when it comes to accessorizing, i look for things that fit within my personal style and serve a purpose (generally speaking). the easiest example of this is using a handbag. although the outside of the bag is what catches my eye first, before falling in love too quickly, i always check out the inside to see how large it is, how many pockets it has, if it has a divider inside, etc.

the Siena Leather Camera Bag from Jo Totes is a great example of style and function in one. while it's main purpose is to make carrying a DSLR camera easier (and safer!), it also has plenty of room to hold your regular handbag items, like your phone, keys, wallet, lip balm, and whatever else you need! truthfully, i tend to leave my camera at home when i'm traveling or doing something in the city merely because i don't have a safe and pretty way to transport it. not so anymore!
i love the shape of this bag - the structure of it is what allows for the protection of the camera, while also making it stylish and versatile. the leather is a rich cognac and the adjustable strap allows for easy wear. the adjustable pads on the inside make it easy to store an extra lens and keep the body of your camera from moving around and risk any scratches or damage. 
i'm happy to say that i no longer have a good reason to leave the DSLR at home, thanks to Jo Totes! i'm looking forward to bringing my camera with me when i travel, especially when i go to see my nephew, so that i can snap some photos that aren't on my iPhone ;)

one lucky winner will receive a $125 gift certificate to use on JoTotes.com! use the giveaway tool below to enter:
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