Some Little Tips for Your Shopping Trips

Obviously, when seasons change, there’s a want and sometimes need to get some new items (last summer I was pregnant and enormous, so I needed some things). Here are some simple, but important tips to keep in  mind when you venture to your nearest retail institution.

1. If it’s on sale, don’t buy it just because. Sometimes the universe and your friendly boutique owner’s sale section perfect align and the item that you were hoping to find is marked down and has an additional percentage off at the register. Those days are great; however, rummaging through the sale section in defeat and then ultimately buying something that you had no intention of purchasing and/or don’t know how, when or why you will wear it is a quick way to spend unnecessarily.  Just because it’s marked down, doesn’t mean it should go in your closet!

2.  You may think, “If it’s in the magazine, I have to make it work with my wardrobe.” Trends are fun. They have been coming and going for centuries. Marie Antoinette rocked sky high hair and, for a time, women wore knickers (yes underwear trends exist too). That doesn’t mean that if it’s trending you should do it. Modesty may come into your decision, color preference or just feeling stupid in what is a “must” look. Here’s one, that though I’ve tried and tried again: Socks with heels. I feel like a doofus when I’m in my closet, so it never makes a  public appearance.

3. Buy Neutrals. Generally speaking, neutrals look rich and luscious (think ivory, olive, navy, blush pink). Buying a lace top in bright pink at Forever 21 may result in an item looking cheap. When you want to buy something at a budget friendly store, stay away from crazy prints and ultra bright colors.

4. Keep the tag on until you wear it. Most stores have at least a 30 day return policy and if you never wear it there’s no sense in hoarding the item. Keep your receipt and the tags on your garment until you know you’re going to wear it.

5. Bring a buddy or be the creeper in the dressing room asking opinions. People are shockingly honest when you’re trying on clothing. Why, you may ask. You haven’t actually bought it yet. If you’re trying it on, you probably aren’t sure about the item. If they tell you it doesn’t look great on, it’s not going to offend because it’s not an item you’ve bought and are sporting around the store. Take advantage of your friends honesty or a strangers opinion!

That’s My Jam





Here’s the recipe for my favorite strawberry jam. I haven’t had luck growing my own strawberries; I usually get one harvest from the plant and then they are just tiny green bushes for the rest of the summer. I apologize in advance for the approximations in this recipe, it started out as one that I found and I tweaked measurements and whether or not I added the lemon. feel free to email me if you have any specific questions!

strawberries, about 1 lb, stemmed, hulled and quartered

sugar, about 1/2 cup (I start with 1/4 cup and add based on necessity. your berries may have been exceptionally sweet and you may be trying to use less sugar. keep in mind the sugar helps with the consistency, so if you use less it may be a more runny jam. still as flavorful though!

lemon zest (optional)

fresh lemon juice (optional)

put strawberries in a saucepan over medium low heat. reduce for about 15 minutes, stirring on occasion and mashing with spoon. the mashing is up to how chunky you like your jam. I prefer plenty of pieces  in mine so mashing in my home is minimal.

once reduced, add sugar, lemon zest and lemon and continue to reduce until the jam has thickened. I have made the jam with and without lemon, with fresh lemon or (gasp) bottled lemon juice (the shelf life is convenient and is more affordable than fresh, while it achieves some tang, the fresh lemon is worth it in this recipe) and all options are, quite frankly, addicting.

it can be served any way you like. I put it on the table with french baguette for brunch, but eat it off of the spoon when I need a sweet treat!

A Favor

I hope you enjoy this recipe and maybe have a chance to try it this weekend! Our local farmers market opens Saturday and I can not wait for the produce and community experience, but I need your help with something.

It’s come to my attention that my About Me section is a bit lacking. To be honest, writing about myself is way out of my comfort zone, so when I launched the blog, I did the bare necessities.  When I view other blogs or Instagram accounts, I love to see how people can connect: even with the mask of a computer.

This weekend, I’ll be working on improving that section and have decided on doing it in a Q&A format. You would be doing me a great service if you commented or emailed me with questions to answer.

I’m a super spaz and have no idea where to begin, nor can I recognize what you might want to know about me! Looking forward to your feedback and to getting all sorts of deep with my answers :).



Black and White With Knots All Over


Spring in Virginia usually goes from freezing to bloody hot, but it seems we are getting the transitional weather that I’ve always envied of so many other areas.

 I love layering, and this time of year is ideal for it. In a perfect world, we can always utilize those layers so we don’t have to be holding a blazer haphazardly over the arm. This is an example of how to stylishly do so: the waste tie.

We are seeing it all over street style Instagrams. A chambray shirt worn intentionally to accentuate the waste, a long sweater wrapped around the waist giving depth to an already maxi-skirt, leather jackets strategically placed to cover up a stain from that park bench you sat on. The lists of potential functionality could go on, but I’ll stop short for your attention span sake.

Case and point is that you kind of can’t go wrong here.