The Skinny Arm Gets Skinny || StudioHop Week 2

  Week 2! Aside from the humbling #sweatyselfies that I’ve been posting on Instagram, showing me looking…less than glamorous, I am loving my new workouts! You can read about my experience during week 1 here. So far this week I have gone to a different studio class every day! (I am so sore!) The deal with StudioHop is that you get unlimited classes at some of the top studios in Dallas (and Austin) for $100 per month. (PS. StudioHop’s summer promo is almost over- buy two months, get one free!) Most of the participating studios offer unlimited classes to their members for over $200- yikes! I’m having a blast trying out new studios and mixing up my routine with different workouts that I’ve been scared to try on my own. I also really like that I have to reserve a spot in each of the classes, because it plan my workout ahead of time. No more excuses for not making it to the gym.

I’ll give you the breakdown of my workouts and favorite instructors so far this week!

Monday: Pure Barre Preston Hollow with instructor and owner Britta Noble. This studio is so convenient because it’s right up the street from my house. If I ever feel compelled to take a morning class (not likely), it will probably be here so I don’t have to fight traffic. Pure Barre’s motto is “Lift. Tone. Burn.” and we definitely did all of those things. During the 6o minute class, we used a small set of hand weights and a stretchy band (what do they call those?), plus a super-cushy mat towards the end of class; I picked a spot in the corner of the dimly lit, mirrored room and jokingly told the ladies around me “don’t judge! I’m new!” They laughed and assured me that I would be fine…I half believed them. By the end of the workout, I was dripping sweat (picture: that man on the treadmill at the gym flinging sweat with every move. yeah, that was me while trying to hold plank position for an extended period) and struggling through the last few minutes of stretching. Stretching! I need to start washing my makeup off before these workouts, because I’m turning shirts brown when I wipe the sweat off my face. Must remember to start bringing a towel. I’ll come back for more barre classes, because when I woke up on Tuesday, I was sore in places that I didn’t know could be sore. Success!

Tuesday: Social Mechanics with instructor Rob. I think this is the workout that I have been most nervous about to-date and probably needs the most explanation. I mean, what is “social mechanics?!” I had no clue what I was walking into, but I picked a 4:30pm class, and walked into the industrial-feeling space next door to everyone’s favorite rooftop on Lower Greenville: HG Supply Co. (how convenient for a healthy meal post-workout!). Bonus: they’re owned by the same people! I was greeted by Rob, the instructor, who assured me that I would be fine. I was also greeted by a pregnant woman who told me not to worry because she still did the workouts (what?! amazing). I met the group as a whole, because they all seemed to already know each other- no strangers here; thank goodness there was another new girl for me to compete with (I’m competitive!). Besides having an amazing space, complete with roll-up store front which gave superb natural light, Social Mechanics is all about a group workout…go figure. You interact with the people in your class to motivate each other to do more, go harder, and finish strong. We started the workout with a warmup 200m run + 10 jumping jacks + 10 sit-ups + 10 kettle bell swings. They might have called those exercises something else, but that’s what I’m calling them. We did that 3 times. As the warmup. I’ve probably had days at the gym where that would have been my whole workout. Instructor Rob was great and explained things to me as we went, making sure that I was comfortable and knew what I was doing with correct form. One of the first things he asked me was “when was the last time you worked out?” Ummm ouch, bro… it was yesterday, actually! Again, dripping sweat seemed to be a theme here; it’s tough to make people believe you when your words say “I’m good!” but your face says “I’m struggling to survive right now!” We did a few sets of push press and some rowing intervals. I’m not sure if you know what that means (I didn’t), but all you need to know is that it means that my shoulders were super sore the next day. I really enjoyed the group dynamic and being allowed to talk during a workout (sometime Pilates studios are too quiet for me!); I’ll be back soon.

Wednesday: Group Reformer Pilates at Fitnz360 with instructor Carol. After enjoying my first reformer class last week, I thought I would try reformer again at a different studio. Turns out, there are a ton of different styles of reformer pilates. The class I went to was small, aka only one other person besides myself, but that gave me more individualized attention, so it was a positive. Instructor Carol was super nice and made sure I was injury-free before beginning class; when I told her that my shoulders were sore from Tuesday’s workout, she modified some exercises for me, which I appreciated. The Deep Ellum location was a bit out of the way for me, but I wanted to give it a shot anyway. I probably won’t visit again just because of location, but it could be convenient for a lunch time class if you work in downtown Dallas.

Overall: I’m sore, but having a great time. Last Sunday was just a “blah” day for me, but after my workout on Monday, I felt amazing. Endorphinssss! I love that I’ve already had a few people tell me they’re joining StudioHop so we can workout together! Yay!

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Stripes + Denim

My trip to San Francisco 2 weeks ago was an adventure to say the least. Between delayed flights, deciphering public transportation, and being targeted by a creep while in line for ice cream (read about it), the last thing I wanted to worry about was what to wear while exploring a new city.  I wrote about my packing list before leaving, and I tried to stick pretty closely to my plan. I have come a long way since the days of packing for trips in high school when I would do my best to fit every item of clothing possible into the biggest suitcase I owned; these days, I do my best to think about my travel plans for each day, the overall vibe and weather of the city I’m visiting and then pack one to two outfits per day.

Something I bragged about on this trip was that I only packed two pairs of shoes (crazy, I know!) These white sneakers were one of them and I loved the casual vibe they gave my summer dresses while walking around the city! San Francisco is a walking city, as well as a casual city, with everyone using public transportation, so it’s common to most people in sneakers! So different than Dallas!

I love this quilted Kate Spade cross body and have gotten so much use out of it. When I travel, I try to bring one small cross body that can work as a light tourist bag and double as an evening bag for dinner. This crossbody is the perfect size to carry inside my large handbag that I use as a carry on and I can easily pull it out and go!

Black and white is always a good idea, but since I have had this dress for a while, I like to add different accessories and jackets to keep it looking fresh. Felt hats are a great (and inexpensive) way to change the look of an outfit of to keep from washing your hair for extra day…if we’re being honest. I thinks hats at a little bit of whimsy to any look so I love to add them whenever possible.

This denim vest is actually something I thought I would never wear (I wear it ALL the time!); I bought it from Nordstrom for a costume party originally, but now I love to throw it over dresses for a casual look without the bulk of a denim jacket.

One of the highlights of my trip was meeting up with Melanie, who just moved to San Francisco from Dallas about a week before my trip! It was so fun to connect in a new city and see some of her favorite spots in San Francisco!

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Ice Cream Party

 Happy Monday! Last weekend was so full of activities, I barely had time to take any photos! To most people, that might not be a big deal, but for someone like me who loves to document everything with a picture, it actually stressed me out a little bit. Friday night was my annual Ice Cream Sundae Party (see past parties: 2014 2013) and this year I barely did anything to prepare for the party! In years’ past, I spent so much time preparing and even made hand-dipped cones one year, but I didn’t have a lot of time during the past week to execute a perfect, blog-worthy party. But guess what…. my friends didn’t care and everyone still had a great time! Blogging makes it easy to forget that people are usually just grateful that someone has opened their home to host a party and facilitate meeting new people and having a good time; they don’t care about a staged dessert table or themed cupcakes (although someone did bring themed cupcakes and they were a huge hit!).My friend, Rachel, actually did more prep than I did because she spent hours making this amazing chalking for the party. This ice cream party was definitely a success because of the efforts of my friends. I asked guests to bring their favorite ice cream sundae topping, but there were 60 people RSVPd to attend, so I asked a few specific guests to bring things like: ice, bottled water, bowls, and spoons. Pro tip: use dry ice in a large cooler to store all of your ice cream, as opposed to regular ice- it stays cold longer and doesn’t get wet!

I was a little nervous at the beginning of the party when the “topping table” was empty, but as people started to arrive it filled up nicely. I put down white butcher paper on the table to facilitate easy clean-up, but guests enjoyed drawing on the paper and labeling their toppings! My friend Kirk took this photo of his ice cream sundae, but other than that, I have very few photos from the night. When greeting and mingling with 60 people, it’s tough to remember to take pictures; designate a friend to take photos if you think you’ll forget or won’t have time. Pro tip: Introverts love to have a specific job during a large party because it gives them a platform to talk to people and gives them something to keep them busy if they get too overwhelmed with talking to people. The topping table turned into a gooey mess pretty quickly, hence the butcher paper. I can always count on my friend Daniel to wow us with his baking masterpieces, and this party was no exception. When he arrived with cupcakes baked inside ice cream cones, we all cheered as he walked in the door!I bought this balloon kit to add a little pizazz to the ice cream area and double as a photo booth backdrop. At the end of the night, cleanup was a breeze- I just rolled up the butcher paper and threw it away! I have about 3 bags of extra chocolate chips that were brought to the party, so it looks like I will be baking some cookies soon ;) Ice cream sundae parties are a great idea for an end of summer get together that doesn’t require too much preparation. And ice cream is always a good idea! ;)

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San Francisco || Part Two

 After a whirlwind first day in San Francisco, we made it to the house we were staying at in Half Moon Bay, about 30 minutes south of downtown San Francisco. The house was located in a quiet subdivision with a deck overlooking the Pacific Ocean- amazing. We started our second day of adventure with quiche (thanks, Kristy!) and then set out for a relaxing day at the beach and exploring the coastline.   My travel partner, Amanda, visits SF often and her favorite place is Pebble Beach, just south of Half Moon Bay; so of course, that was our first stop. It’s called “Pebble” Beach because the shoreline isn’t made of sand, but small pebbles. There were a few other people there reading, staring at the waves, drinking coffee, but even with other people around, it was one of the most peaceful places I’ve been; we sat on the beach and didn’t talk…just sat and listened to the ocean. (Then we got up and climbed rocks and took pictures!) We hiked along the coastline and watched sea lions play in the water below. Being outside exploring and hiking is one of my favorite traveling activities and calms down my normally high-strung personality, so this was perfect and gave me time to reflect and think about…life. After a quick coffee stop, we set out to visit Pescadero, which is another small town nearby; although, I wouldn’t classify it as a town… it was really more of a street. The street of Pescadero. Town or not, it was charming- quaint store fronts and small cafes lined the street. We grabbed lunch at The Country Store and sat outside to enjoy some local live music while we waited for our food. Sitting down for a meal after a morning of exploring is one of the best feelings while traveling! Finally: rest!  We did a little more exploring around town and taking photos before heading home to freshen up and meet a friend for dinner. How great are these church doors?! When you think about visiting San Francisco, you don’t think about all of the noteworthy surrounding towns, or at least, I didn’t! I was pleasantly surprised when we arrived in San Mateo after a winding drive through the mountains for dinner. Coffee at Philz, which is a must-try, and an Italian feast at Osteria Coppa exceeded my expectations (even after multiple people setting the bar high for the food in SF). I rarely eat pasta, but this was so good!  This is where things take a weird turn… that morning I was getting ready to meet a photographer friend, Melanie, who just moved to SF from Dallas. I was super excited to have some quality photos of the city, but of course I forgot my hairdryer and curling iron. No wonder my luggage felt so light. So I tried to improvise, but frizzy hair was just a precursor for the strange sequence of events that would happen later that day, only to be redeemed by the sweet people I met during my day. After braving the traffic and getting some quality tourist photos at the Golden Gate Bridge, my travel partner got sick and was done for the day. I couldn’t leave SF without squeezing every second out of my last day, so instead of her dropping me off at the airport, I got out in the Mission District to visit a few more spots before taking the BART back to the airport.   I went to Tartine Bakery, and had what I consider the best sandwich of my life. Seriously. I didn’t even bother ordering any of their baked goods, because how would I be able to choose just one? They all looked so good. Tartine is a tiny corner bakery with limited seating; there are two large community tables (which I love) and if there’s an open chair, you say hi to the person next to it and sit! At this point, I had my luggage with me so when I sat down next to a couple waiting for their food, it was an easy point of conversation. Come to find out, they were also tourists and just visiting SF for a few days. After finishing their meal, they offered me their lemon bar (Yes, duh! I ate it on the plane and it was delicious!) and moved on to their next spot. Then after that a nice guy from Malibu sat down and we chatted for a bit before I needed to go. I “needed” to go because I knew that the line for Bi-Rite Creamery would be super long and I didn’t have a ton of time to waste. Sure enough, I walked down the block and grabbed my spot at the very end of the wrap-around-the-corner line for ice cream.  Brace yourself. As I mentioned, I had my luggage with me, and most people would probably assume that I was a tourist, just like I would assume they are a tourist if they had a map in their hand. A middle-aged man got in line for ice cream behind me, and even though I’m friendly, I would also consider myself a savvy traveler and somewhat suspicious of people I don’t know. Well, this particular man had a backpack and a map in his hand, so I naturally assumed that he was a fellow tourist, excited to try two scoops of Bi-Rite Creamery goodness. I didn’t think too much of it the first time he “accidentally” bumped my leg with his backpack. I looked at him and he quickly apologized. I was aware that he was a little closer to me than was necessary, but then again, we were in line on crowded sidewalk; I was keeping an eye on my luggage in front of me, so I didn’t think he was trying to steal anything. But he bumped me with his backpack again. On a personal note, I have a pretty strict “don’t touch me unless you know me policy” so I was actually getting annoyed with him. Then he asked me if I could show him on his map where we were… well, no, I couldn’t because his map was of downtown and we were in the Mission. I wondered to myself where his phone was (duh.) but handed his map back to him, apologized for not being more helpful, and went back to playing on my phone. He bumped my bare leg with his backpack again and I KNEW that something was not right. My luggage was fine. He’s a tourist, right? Well, I know enough to trust my instincts and so I took a step back from him to look at him… then I looked at his backpack that he had repeatedly bumped me with. Then I saw it: he did have a phone. Except he couldn’t use it for directions because his phone was facing camera-side up in the side pocket of his backpack…filming up my skirt. Serious. No wonder he kept bumping me. What a CREEP!!!!!!

It all started to click slowly in my brain. It was like a movie playing in slow motion. I looked up and said to him “there’s your phone, huh.” and he started to look uncomfortable but said “oh, the battery’s dead.” I slowly nodded my head and gave him my best stink eye (which is pretty good, I might add!). He asked me again how long I thought it would take to get somewhere to which I responded very coldly “I don’t know, bro.” Another stink eye. As I kept processing what had been happening over the last 5 minutes in line, he must have seen things clicking in my brain, because he promptly put his backpack on his back, got out of line and walked away. It’s a good thing he did because if he had stood next to me for about 3.5 seconds longer, he undoubtedly would have had my fist in his face and his phone shattered into a million pieces on the concrete. I was furious. I stood in silence for a few seconds after he left then started yelling to the people standing behind me “DID YOU SEE THAT? DID YOU SEE WHAT JUST HAPPENED?!?” The family standing immediately behind me were concerned and made sure that I was ok, but were shocked to hear what had happened. I was absolutely sick just thinking about what a creep that guy was! I’m still furious, if you can’t tell. BUT I am so glad that I listened to that little feeling that was telling me that something was wrong. So glad.

I am all for women traveling alone and being independent, but at the same time, it is so important to be aware of your surroundings, know where you’re going, and have a plan if something goes wrong. It’s nice that maps and and apps on our phone these days that can help us get around a new city, as opposed to having to pull out a paper map, but even if you’re unsure of where you are, you need to walk with a purpose- nobody needs to know that you don’t feel confident about which direction you are going.   Even after that horrible experience, I am so thankful for the sweet family from SF who chatted with me the rest of the time I was waiting for ice cream; we talked about which flavors we were going to try, the places we have traveled, and what their daughter was going to study during her upcoming school year. The nice people you meet during your travels make the difference between a good trip and a horribly lonely experience. Make friends! I had one scoop of Creme Brûlée and one scoop of Salted Caramel- perfection. After enjoying my ice cream, I hopped on the BART and went back to the airport, where I was excited to fly Virgin America for the first time back to Dallas- any airline with flowers on the check in desks gets my vote! I was so impressed with the plane- cool lights made the cabin feel like a night club, and the cushy seats (as compared to the cardboard seats on my outgoing United flight) felt so good while I watched Friends re-runs on the tv screen 8 inches in front of me. Well, after such an exhausting day, my trip wouldn’t be complete without one last mishap: I flew into Love Field, but my car was at DFW airport, 30 minutes away (haha!). That mistake is completely my fault, but I just don’t even know how I did that; I thought I triple-checked for that! I have never been more happy to be back in Dallas after a trip! San Francisco adventure, indeed. ;)    

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San Francisco || Part One

My 5:45am flight was brutal. Brutal. I am not a morning person, so I’m not sure why I booked that flight. Right. Pro tip: don’t book a 5am flight. After boarding the plane and having a row to myself, I slept for 2 hours and felt so much better! When I woke up from my nap, we were flying over the Grand Canyon, which I have never visited, but it has now moved up a few ranking spots on my “to visit list” after seeing the aerial view- it was breathtaking! Of course, airplane window photos don’t do it justice.  When I landed in San Francisco, I had text messages waiting for me from my SF travel partner, Amanda, saying that her flight was delayed and she was still in Dallas! At that point, her flight had been delayed about 3 hours and she was not happy. Our rental car was also in her name, so I had to decide if I wanted to wait at the airport (nope!) for her to arrive or take the train into the city alone. At that point, it was still only 7:45am in San Francisco, and I really thought about waiting at the airport for Amanda so I could take a nap, but adventure was waiting so I knew I had to get to the city. It had been a few years since I traveled solo or had to ride public transportation, so I was a little nervous about having to figure out which train to take into town, but don’t worry: I figured things out just fine- I’m a smart girl!  In Dallas, we have the DART (Dallas Area Rapid Transit), so when I saw a sign for the BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) in San Francisco it seemed familiar to me. I don’t know what I did before having a smart phone because I definitely used it multiple times to find my way around the city; after a quick google search, I figured out the cost of the BART ticket I needed to buy from the airport. Instead of buying a one-way ticket to a specific destination, you purchase a ticket from a machine and pre-load it with money for continued use. A blogger friend commented on my Instagram photo, asking why I didn’t just take an Uber from the airport; I definitely could have done that, but I like to experience the city like a local (sometimes!) and wanted to be adventurous and take the train. Sometimes I just need to do it the hard way to prove to myself that I can figure it out.
So where was I going to go in San Francisco with my carry-on suitcase and large handbag in tow? Well, the only place I really knew anything about in San Francisco was the Mission District, because I have followed Jordan Ferney, one of my favorite bloggers, for years and she lives in that area of the city. I chose to get off at the 16th Mission BART stop as opposed to the 24th Mission stop just because of the sheer amount of restaurants I saw on my map near the 16th. That was a good choice, as it seemed to get progressively sketchy the further south I went. 
When my train arrived in the city it was only 8am so I wanted to get some coffee and do some exploring before my travel partner arrived. I visited Four Barrel Coffee on Valencia, after walking a few blocks North from the train station. The line for coffee was almost to the door- about 15 people long- and the the tables and bars were crowded with what would be classified as “hipsters” in Dallas, but in San Fran, they’re just normal people. I ordered my latte and found a seat that overlooked the busy bike rack and Valencia St., which was perfect for people watching. I spent about an hour there just resting from that morning’s travel and looking up tourist attractions that I wanted to see around the city. 
Even though I had a small rolling suitcase with me, I didn’t want to waste time, so I decided to explore the surrounding area. I started walking south on Valencia before realizing that south was not the way to go. Haha after turning around, I walked around up Valencia, strolled down a few side streets, back down Mission, and over to Dolores, where I found Mission Dolores Park. It was such a beautiful day with a cool breeze so I decided to lounge in the park- there were families, musicians, tourists, and homeless people…all enjoying the park together. It was a great place for people watching and nobody was bothered at all that I was rolling my suitcase around the city.


Eventually, my friend’s flight landed and she made it through the rental car line and into the city. We decided to meet downtown but I wasn’t sure how to get there and did t want to walk the 30 minutes back to the train station for the BART. I Googled to find some transportation options and saw the “Muni” (Municipal Transportation); earlier I overheard a two year old yelling about riding the Muni, so that made sense and since he liked it, I thought I might enjoy it as well! I decided that I would be adventurous and take the Muni, but still didn’t know what I was doing- good thing Google suggested that I download an app to help (thanks, Google!).

 I downloaded “Rover” which lets you type in a starting (or current location) and ending point and shows you all of the public transportation options you have to get there. It was so helpful and told me exactly what time the Muni train would arrive at the stop nearest me and where I needed to get off to arrive at my destination. Here’s a screen shot of the route I took downtown from Mission Dolores Park. This little app saved me a $30 Uber- the Muni ticket was only $2! Also, you may notice that my phone was about to die so that was stressful and also meant that I couldn’t take any more photos or Snapchat videos (which had been my entertainment all day) until I charged my phone. Pro tip: bring your backup battery charger in case of emergency!  I met Amanda at the Hyatt (hooray!!) where we parked the car (parking is expensive in downtown SF!) and decided to explore some of the touristy parts of the city- along the pier and Fisherman’s Wharf. We saw the Sea Lions on Pier 39 just lounging in the sun- they are such funny animals! We walked down to Ghiradelli Square and sat outside, watching people lounge in the grass, swim in the bay, and ride bikes past us; one thing I loved about SF is how many people are active outside- everyone!


We ate lunch at the Pier 23 Cafe, and had the best Fish & Chips at a table outside- the weather in San Francisco was so perfect! Locals kept telling me that the weather wasn’t normally this warm and clear and that I picked a great weekend to visit! After a quick Muni ride back to the Hyatt, we rested before meeting a friend for dinner nearby and I literally took a 30 minute nap in the lobby- that’s how tired I was!

 We ate at The Plant Cafe on the Pier 3 downtown; aside from taking our order and delivering our food, the waiter barely checked on us, but we weren’t bothered at all because the view and atmosphere were so enjoyable and the food was delicious. After dinner, we drove to Half Moon Bay to spend the night with some friends with plans to explore the coastline the next day. Their house overlooks the Pacific and has such a great view- we could even hear the fog horn every 8 seconds in the distance.

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The Skinny Arm Gets Skinny || StudioHop

 After a vacation, it’s tough to get back into a routine. Actually, for me, if I get out of a routine, it seems like it takes forever to get back into one… I’m constantly looking for new motivation and ways to get excited about working out and eating healthy. And let’s face it: unhealthy food is waaaaay more fun to post on Instagram. Nobody wants to see a picture of the green beans I ate for dinner last night. Right?!

Well, in an effort to mix up my workout routine, I decided to try a StudioHop membership. You get to hop to different workout studios all month for $100… a pretty sweet deal when you look at a lot of studios charging over $200 for one month of unlimited classes. Yikes! I’m excited to try some new classes that I have been scared to go to before! I like to have a workout buddy with me to try new classes, so please sign up and join me; we can get in shape together!! I’ll be keeping you in the loop on which classes I try and who my favorite instructors are each week, so stay tuned! I’m telling you this in an effort to keep myself accountable to working out…and who knows, maybe I’ll be posting less donut pictures and more veggies! Baby steps, y’all!Today was my first workout as a StudioHop member and I visited BEYOND Studios on Lovers Lane and took their Pilates Remix class with instructor Kendall. It’s been about 5 hours since the class and I still feel like jelly, so I that’s a good sign that it was a great workout! When I checked in at BEYOND, I told Kendall that this was my first class and that I was super nervous; she calmed my fears and assured me that she would keep an eye on me and help me through anything I was unsure of. During the class, she moved around the studio, encouraging students and adjusting our movements, as needed. After the 50 minute class, I was drenched in sweat, in awe of the ease of movement of the other women while I looked like a baby giraffe learning how to walk! BEYOND Studio is a bright, clean space with two rows of Pilates reformer machines (which look way more intimidating than they actually are!). It’s always a humbling experience to try a new workout, especially in a room full of veterans when you’re a beginner, but all of the women around me were so supportive and friendly, assuring me that I would feel like a pro at my next class. It’s amazing what can happen when you open yourself up to connecting with the people around you, versus keeping to yourself and struggling through something alone!

BEYOND2I seriously need workout partners and am super excited about this new experience; you should join me for a new workout experience!!

 

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What to Pack || San Francisco

This weekend is HUGE! It’s my first-ever trip to California! I am so thankful to get spend a weekend with one of my closest friends and explore her favorite city- San Francisco! I am beyond excited and have texted her no less than 5 times asking what she is going to wear this weekend…I want it to look like we are “going to the same party!” Do you know what I mean? Like, a friend shows up at your house to pick you up and you are dressed completely different and there is no way you are both going to the same event- I hate that!

Well, apparently there is a specific San Francisco style that I’m unaware of, but I’m betting it’s completely different than Dallas’s full-makeup-and-hair-everywhere-you-go-style. So I’ve done some research (mainly stalking San Fran bloggers on Instagram) and luckily I still have time to grab a few last minute essentials for traveling, plus a new book for the plane, please! These are a few of the things I’m packing (into ONE carry-on suitcase- see my carry-on essentials here! ) or buying to mix in with my current pieces! One more day until a reprieve from the scorching Dallas heat!! Happy weekend!

sanfranpicks
1. white button down  // 2. leather tote  // 3. plaid // 4. solid midi rings  // 5. utility jacket // 10.  high rise jean // 6.  striped sweater // 7. jumpsuit // 8. denim jacket  // 9.  high rise jean // 10. pearl midi rings  // 11. fringe booties

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Striped One Shoulder Dress

wedding1

I absolutely love weddings. Love them. Over the weekend, I attended a wedding for a dear friend in Colleyville, TX at the Piazza in the Village. As you can imagine, I was excited to celebrate the bride and groom, but I was especially excited about this wedding because I knew the dance floor was going to be full of some of my favorite people and hoppin’ all night long! I was almost equally as excited to be able to dress up! I like to dress in extremes: cocktail attire or workout clothes- those are my two favorite clothing genres. Because of that, I have a lot of special occasion dresses and things that are just a little too fancy for a normal dinner out… so I wear them to weddings! I gave you a few wedding dress options last week, but I wanted to wear this dress that I haven’t had an occasion for in so long! This particular dress is BCBG, but I hadn’t worn it in years, so I thought I would pull it out of the depths of my closet. I wore my shoes ALL night long on the dance floor (an accomplishment!); they’re new from ALDO.

wedding2

Lucky for you, my friend Dustin (above) was getting out of his car right as I was taking these photos; he’s pretty stylish so I thought I would include him in my wedding #ootd photo – you’re welcome.

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There is a darling courtyard between the chapel and reception hall where we had a short cocktail hour before the reception began. Above is my best “prom pose” with my friend, Rachel, before we tore it up on the dance floor all night long! The wedding overall was a blast and such a sweet time with friends celebrating the bride and groom! I love nights like this when you get home and you’re exhausted but your heart is so full. :)

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MELT Ice Cream

Last week, a friend and I took a short road trip to Ft. Worth, TX! It’s just on the other side of the DFW metroplex, but I rarely visit, even though I enjoy the slower pace and casual vibe that the city has to offer, as opposed to the hustle and bustle of Dallas.

The main purpose of the visit was to try MELT Ice Cream for the first time! I had actually visited the store once before, but they were closed, so I had to leave ice cream-less! This time we were not disappointed! MELT customers are greeted with a peppy yellow store front that screams “summertime!” After snapping a few photos (how could I resist?!), we went inside for my favorite frozen treat. MELT features unique flavors like “Boozy Buccaneer” and “Planet of the Grapes” that are rotated each season, so don’t expect your normal vanilla and chocolate here.

I tried the “Salt Lick” flavor- I love salted caramel; my friend ordered a scoop of the Boozy Buccaneer and we both loved our choices! Their ice cream is the perfect creamy consistency and their cones are delicious too! The staff and customers were all super friendly! MELT felt like a quaint neighborhood ice cream shop, where they know your name and your favorite flavor.

I found out while I was there that they opened a MELT ice cream stand in Dallas in the Trinity Groves area, open for business Friday through Sunday. Looks like I might not have to drive to Ft. Worth for my next ice cream fix. I will definitely be visiting MELT a few more times before fall- I can’t believe summertime is coming to an end; I’m trying to squeeze as much fun into the end of my summer as possible!

I’ve been on a sneaker kick lately and am loving these little white sneaks with all of my summer dresses! I got so many compliments on my outfit while I was at MELT!

Outfit details:

Dress: Nordstrom

Hat: Madewell

Shoes: Via Spiga (similar Rebecca Minkoff)

Clutch/Crossbody: Nordstrom

 

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What to Wear || Wedding Guest

Summer is a busy season, full of weekend road trips, beach getaways, and…. weddings! I have a wedding coming up this weekend and I am having a hard time deciding what to wear; I have a few good options that are waiting to be worn to a special occasion, but I haven’t made up my mind yet. I usually receive a lot of questions from friends about what is appropriate to wear to weddings these days, and usually get one phone call on the day of a party or special event to ask what I’m wearing, so I have put together a few helpful tips when considering your wedding ensemble.

Things to consider when picking an outfit for a summer wedding:

1. Is it indoors or outdoors? This is TEXAS and it could be 100 degrees during an outdoor ceremony in the late afternoon, so it’s probably better to save your fine silk and form-fitting-spanx-requiring gowns for another occasion.

2. What time of day is the wedding? If it’s indoors, is it an afternoon or an evening wedding? Sunday afternoon weddings look vastly different than a Saturday night event. Don’t show up wearing a sequined mini-dress if afternoon tea is being served for the reception.

3. What does the invitation say? I know, that’s TOO easy, but the invitation might explicitly say “cocktail attire” or “semi-formal,” in which case, it would be inappropriate not to follow the couple’s wishes. What other clues can you gather from the invitation? Tip: if the invitation is enclosed in more than one envelope, it’s safe to say that at least “cocktail” attire is required. More envelopes = more formal.

4. Make sure you are comfortable! Sitting through an hour-long ceremony (eeek!) will be that much harder if you can’t breathe in your dress or it’s too short to sit down in!

PS. Don’t wear white- that rule still applies and shows respect for the bride. Don’t wear denim- just don’t .

To save you time, I rounded up a few of my favorite dresses that are wedding appropriate and great options for you to greet the bride and groom in style.

Wedding Guest Dresses

1. fit and flare floral  // 2. printed maxi // 3. black sheer // 4. metallic sandal // 5. blue maxi // 6. pink lace // strappy silver sandal // multicolor sandal // 9. pink floral

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