Thursday, April 17, 2014

$4 Cashmere & The Case of the Broken Clasp

I know that it's technically spring, and no one wants to see or even think about sweaters... but let's be honest, it snowed in Kansas again Monday... so sweaters really are in the mix for at least part of the country for a bit longer.

Sometimes you hit thrifting gold at the salvation army and goodwill. Seriously, it's possible! I recently found this fantastic bright pink cashmere Izod sweater at Goodwill for just 4 dollars! It is so cozy and fits really well! It will go with so many more things... but it was so comfy paired with my leather leggings. 
Izod Sweater: Goodwill, $4
Leather Leggings: Target, $25
Studded Black Flats: Target, $21
Camisole: Old, Clearance. - gift
Bow Earrings: Icing, $7?
Vintage Necklace: Salvation Army, $3
Purse: Target, $20 - Pictured Below

Outfit Total: $80?
I love this purse. I really wanted a basic everyday, black purse. So I got this at Target for only $20, but within the first week of wearing it, the magnetic clasp on the flap broke. :( So every time I pick it up, or turn a corner in the car and it falls off the seat... its entire contents fly everywhere. I'm sure that if I try, I can find some type of magnet or piece to put in there that will fix it. But I'm a little irritated, because I haven't bought a purse in a while. So I'm choosing not to try to fix it right now... haha.
 This is what happens when KC is shooting pictures of me. :) Silliness. 

Have you ever found a super nice quality piece at a typical thrift store?

I would love to hear your thrifting stories! :) 

XOXO,

Alexandra

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Snapshots of New Orleans & The Road, Days 5 & 6, March 2014

Day 5

Since it was our last day in New Orleans we woke up pretty early and packed up our stuff so we could check out of our hotel as soon as we got back from walking around. 
We passed this mural with whales on it (right next to our hotel) and I had to get a picture before we left. So neat! For those who don't know, I have a major thing for whales. :) 
We decided to eat breakfast at a place called the Ruby Slipper (you know, because we were clicking our heels back to Kansas after lunch..).
 I ordered banana pecan pancakes with sausage and OJ and KC got an omelette with potatoes and an iced coffee.
The food was just ok, I was really hoping that it would be amazing... but mine was kind of bland, and Kyle's was nothing to write home about. The pancakes were probably pretty decent, but I just enjoyed that banana nut muffin so much on Day 2 (link below)!
After that we walked back around near the market, picked up lots of souvenirs for family and friends and took in our last moments in the city.
We walked back through Latrobe Park and admired the gorgeous fountain and statue!
Lastly, we stopped at Faulkner House Books, the house where Faulkner lived in New Orleans, now turned into a book store. 
It is a literary landmark, and a fun little place to visit! We looked around and I bought a little poetry book about food, of course. I felt like I should have bought a Faulkner... but I wasn't sure what I wanted. Also, it's so hard for me to buy full price books. I usually get them used, at Goodwill or library booksales. So paying $15 for a small book feels so excessive! All the same I am glad that we went.  
By this point my feet (that had been killing me daily) were dead as can be. So so unhappy. We made it to the hotel where I parked it in the Starbucks (with the postcards) while KC (so, so sweetly) packed the car, checked out and picked up a muffuletta to go at The Central Grocery for the ride back to Memphis. 
A muffuletta is a sandwich named after the Italian bread of the same name. This bread is sort of flat, crispy on the outside and soft on the inside covered in sesame seeds. The bread is then filled with olive salad (olives, carrots, celery, seasonings and olive oil), mortadella, salami, ham and provolone. 

It is huge and all kinds of delicious! Not only is it as big as KC's head, we really could have just eaten a half of a sandwich! But boy, was it yummy! :) 

Then he picked me up and we hit the road! 
The drive was fine, Mississippi has some really fancy rest stops!

We made it to Memphis and checked into our hotel. I was getting kind of tired and worn down, but we decided to go to dinner and get ribs (Memphis is famous for them!) at Central BBQ
We always think that ribs sound good, but they never are. Anybody else have this problem? Anyhow, we ordered ribs to share, and Full House was on... so that cheered me right up. :) The ribs were actually very good! The baked beans were really great too, they had a jalapeno sort of flavor! :) 

Day 6
We woke up and finished the ride home! Nothing eventful to report. But our kitten sure missed us. :) 
Well there you have it! See Days 1& 2 here, and Day 3 here and Day 4 here. See other travel posts here. :) And as always, stay tuned for more!

Where have you guys been recently?!

Give me suggestions in the comments! I love a good recommendation! :) 

Thanks For Reading! 



XO,


Alexandra

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Happy Birthday Olivia // 2014

This is Olivia.
She is 7 going on 27.

She is one of the best surprises of my life so far. (as a sister... not a momma ;) ) 

She is spunky & smart.

She is blonde & determined.

She reminds us all to step back and have fun. 

She's made us into a closer knit family. 

Happy Birthday OE! 

I love you! 

Alexandra 




Friday, April 11, 2014

At Junk Bonanza!

A few weeks ago I entered to win tickets to Junk Bonanza. It was through the Flea Market Style blog (of the magazine which I LOVE) so I figured why not? I didn't really know anything about it & I didn't expect to win.... but I did! Thanks Flea Market Style & Junk Bonanza!
I received two early bird tickets to the event, the most recent issue of flea market style magazine and a free tote bag at the event! Since we have dear friends that live in Minneapolis we decided to go for it! 

We spent our first day taking it all in and enjoying the event! 

Tomorrow we will go back with our friends for round two! 
As a major thrifter and junk lover, this is pretty exciting to me! :) 

Have you ever been to Junk Bonanza?

Do you read Flea Market Style?

Be back soon! :) 

Alexandra

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Snapshots of New Orleans II, March 2014 // Day 4

We woke up and were pretty tired from staying out later than usual, but we made it out and about and decided to check out the French Market!

A beautiful statue of Joan of Arc, a gift from France to New Orleans.
It was SO cold and windy this day... and Kyle forgot to pack a jacket... so it was a little rough. But we made it out to the Market and walked around a bit looking at the different vendors.
 It was interesting, I guess I expected it to be a little more authentic (like the AMAZING market in Saint John!, here), but a lot of it was folding tables with vendors selling run of the mill jewelry, t-shirts etc. This was certainly not the case for everyone! We went ahead and grabbed three mardi gras masks for souvenirs at the tables and then headed back to the start of the market.
We were cold and pretty hungry, so we decided to try out one of the vendors for some lunch. We stopped at a place called 'Mother Nature's Cupboard' and placed our order for a Buffalo Shrimp Po'boy, a Crab Cake Sandwich and a basket of their Apple Beignets(!). :) The service was good, the beignets (which were ready first) were AMAZING! We decided that they were our second favorite! The Shrimp Po' Boy Kyle liked a lot, I am not a fan of bleu cheese... so I would have liked it better in a different style. My crab cake sandwich was also pretty good, the middle was not as 'done' as I would have liked. But the greens and tomatoes were super fresh and everything but the very middle was tasty! Overall it was a good lunch with excellent beignets for a reasonable price.

We then went back up to some of the more unique vendors. I purchased more souvenirs for myself and for friends and family. I found a nice water color of Jackson Square, some pearl jewelry for myself and for upcoming birthdays/holidays and hot sauce for my dad.

My favorite booth was this little table that sold  gorgeous handmade headbands & 'fascinators' (inbetween a hat and a headband) . It is called Bedford Falls Headwear.They were all covered in flowers or sparkles or feathers (if not all three!). I had such a hard time choosing that I actually had to eat lunch before I picked... but I ended up with this GORGEOUS number! I think it's super fun and not too crazy to wear on a regular basis... but nothing like you could purchase at a store. So unique and gorgeous.The woman at the booth was really sweet and helpful. She even gave me a bunch of free post cards since she was out of business cards! :) The lady who was there when I made my purchase was also very sweet. What do you guys think of this lovely headband?!?!
After we were done at the market we headed back out to the quarter through Latrobe Park, which was gorgeous and unexpected! Very small, but really pretty!

We visited some touristy shops on the way back to the hotel and picked up things like pralines (They call them Prah-Leens in LA, but here we call them Pray-Leens anyone else want to weigh in on this? haha), a cookbook for me, a LA spoon for KC etc. 
When we reached the hotel we unloaded our packages and took the car out to the garden district to a bookshop called Maple Street Book Shop. It is a book shop that has been around since 1965 and is housed in two cute little houses (one for new and one for used books). The used book building was being remodeled, so we just visited the 'new' one which contained a little of each. 
As soon as I walked in, I loved the place. So many windows, books and other amazing things to look at! I spent some time in the Children's room and then perused the young adult and adult rooms. The prices (for used books) was not the cheapest (but then again I typically get mine at Goodwill and Library Booksales!) but I ended up with four books to add to my collection! :) 
After that we drove out to City Park and since it was chilly and dinner time we decided to get dinner and beignets at Morning Call Coffee Stand (a beignet recommendation from the women at the gallery from Post #2). It was very fun and cute, it's been open since the late 1800's! The waiters are all dressed up in uniform and fun hats. Ours was very nice, but reminded me of a sort of big city, fast talking guy that you would see in an old movie. So funny. 
I ordered gumbo, KC ordered an alligator sausage and then we shared a basket of beignets and a cafe au lait (we never drink hot coffee... but it was chilly and we wanted to try it!)

Sadly, I am not a gumbo fan. I guess, or perhaps I am not a fan of this particular type of gumbo. It was very fishy for me, but I am glad that I tried it. KC's alligator sausage was tasty. It essentially tasted like a regular sausage with a little more heat to it. 
Our beignets came without powdered sugar, because you have an entire shaker full on your table. So we proceeded to shake, shake, shake until they were perfectly covered and then dip them in our cafe au lait, which had also been recommended as something to shake powdered sugar into! :) It was tasty, but it didn't take the lead from Cafe Beignet
Eating beignets is a messy process... especially when you sprinkle your own powdered sugar... and add coffee. But I think, if it's not messy... you probably aren't doing it right! ;) 
After dinner we went back to the hotel and rested for a bit. I caught up on some travel journal entries & post card writing before we headed back out to the Quarter. 
We decided to visit The Carousel Bar at The Hotel Monteleone on Royal Street for drinks. I had heard about the carousel bar while doing online research before the trip and knew that I had to go. It's exactly like it sounds, a bar that is also a carousel. It spins very slowly as you enjoy your drinks (one rotation every 15 minutes). The carousel is very ornate and gorgeous, not necessarily bright and whimsical like the ones you find in parks etc. The whole lounge is very luxurious and old fashioned looking. The walls are deep green and there are portraits of flappers on the walls. It's a really lovely atmosphere.
We took a table near the bar, ordered our drinks and were sitting at the bar before our drinks were delivered! :) It was really fun. I ordered a Pimm's Cup, because I really like Pimm's but have never had one out. It was really good. I ended up ordering a second one and Kyle tried the Sazerac (a New Orleans-y drink, that is pretty purely alcohol and super strong.) My second Pimm's Cup had strawberries in it, so it was even better and KC enjoyed his Sazerac.
It was fun to enjoy a fancy bar scene; one because the bar and lounge were so beautiful and old fashioned, but two just because we typically don't go out to bars, and on the off chance we do, they aren't nearly so beautiful. We didn't mind paying a little more than we usually would for the experience. (can you spot our reflections in the mirror below?)
After we finished our drinks we walked back to our hotel and called it a night, since we knew we would be leaving around lunch time the next day.

Have you ever done anything out-of-the-ordinary on a trip?

I would love to hear your story and how it went below! :) 

See Days 1& 2 here, and Day 3 here and of course stay tuned for Day 5! :) 

XOXO,

Alexandra





Friday, April 4, 2014

Bright Jade, Black Lace & Feathers // Remixing Your Wardrobe

Happy Friday everyone! :) I hope you had a great week! 

I still have two New Orleans posts coming... but in the meantime, here is another winter / remixing outfit for you! (others can be found by clicking on the fashion tab above!).
Black Lace Blouse: F21, $25?, old
Gray Pants: TJMaxx, $16, old
Black Sequined Flats: Kohl's?, 25?, obviously old... :)
Green Vintage Necklace: Salvation Army, $3
Black Rose Drop Earrings: Gift, old.

Outfit Total: $69!
I am amazed at how many 'old' items I pulled out of the closet to create this one! I have been trying to do that more, incorporating old and new pieces into an outfit, but it's usually mostly new items, plus one thrifted item and one old one. This is a success with 4 old items & one thrifted! :) Yay for remixing!
I have always been a sucker for a bright green and black. It's such a brilliant contrast, but I find bright green kind of hard to integrate into my wardrobe these days (I rocked a lime green cardi all through high school, and still have it)... but this necklace is a nice pop of almost a bright jade-like green. I loved the color and find that it helps me revive my green + black combo in a more sophisticated way. :) 
I love the lace panels in the back! It's so feminine and alluring without showing off a lot of skin. Lace tops in general have an important place in my wardrobe essentials list. I have quite a few neutral ones from black 3/4 length blouses to Ivory scoop neck tshirt. They are so versatile. This blouse is a little more dressy, but it is still such a basic piece. Ending my love note to lace shirts now. ;) 
I also have this fun little feathery 'hat' that I got for $5 maybe on clearance once. It was completely random and I never wore it until I was Cruella De Ville for Halloween last year, but I think it could be kind of fun to wear if you went to a party where people were dressing up a bit, but not full on costumes. Who knows, but it was fun to wear it if even just for the pictures. :) 

What is your favorite eye catching color combo? 



Do you have an obsession with lace tees and blouses too? 


Thank you for reading! 

XOXO,

Alexandra

Like this post? See other fashion posts by clicking on the 'fashion' tab above!

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Duchess Turns 1!

Happy Birthday Baby Cat! 
You are fiesty, curious, silly and sometimes cuddly.

Your favorite toy is a rubber band and you've got some serious prowling skills.

I hope you learn to scratch and bite less. 

Here's to many more wacky years together! :) 

This *birthday* hat... looks like an elf hat or something. Poor kitten... I'm that cat mom.... : /

Thanks for Reading,

Alexandra