Friday 28 November 2014

Inaugural Fashion: Jennifer

This week, I have shared ideas of what to wear to my dad's inauguration, as suggested by fellow bloggers. Today, I'm excited to share what Jennifer from Southern Living: Preppy Style came up with! Jennifer is hands down one of my favourite bloggers and I couldn't wait to see what she was going to suggest!! Here's what Jennifer came up with:

Melissa recently asked for some fashion styling help for her father's upcoming inauguration. I am flattered that she asked me for such help and I had a fun time picking out a few selections. 

As the wife of a government official, I know all to well the dress code for such political yet very exciting events.  And Melissa knows that I like to air on the conservative side of things for such events.  This doesn't mean you can't have the "pow" though!

I asked a few questions of Melissa; if the inauguration would be indoors our outdoors, if there would be a party thereafter, what type of party and if she would have access to a dressing room to change into a cocktail attire.  One never knows and the questions have to be asked.  

Since Melissa is in Canada and the event will be indoors, I chose the following for the inaugural event.  This is a more business-type event and therefore, I went with a dressier business outfit.  I LOVE this dress from H & M.  I actually have this dress and for the price, the comfort, fit and quality is really outstanding and unexpected.  $34.95!  The blazer is also from H & M for $49.95.  These are classic items she can wear again and again as Melissa announced to me some other very exciting things happening in her life where she might need such staples in her closet.  I do not own this particular jacket but I do have other H & M jackets and whenever people find out where I purchased by dress suits, they are always pleasantly surprised. I completed the outfit with classic pearls, simple bangles and some fun J. Crew pumps for the "POW!"  After all, Melissa is the honored guest standing beside her father so she should ONLY look slightly better than him!  *wink wink*

What I also love about this pairing is that Melissa can remove the jacket and voila!, instant cocktail dress.  Business to cocktail in two seconds flat.  And should it be a chilly atmosphere, she can easily put the jacket back on and still be cocktail attired.  The jacket is dressier, in my opinion, then a regular business jacket and can help her transition from one event to the next. 

4. David Yurman Bracelets Here and Here

Now, let's say Melissa does want to make that change to more formal cocktail attire.  She does have access to a dressing room, so this is a possibility. In that case, we have the following.

When I'm styling myself (or in this case, others), I like to start my search with the creme-de-la-creme of fashion and with this session, I started with Neiman Marcus and Van Cleef and Arpels.  Hey, one can dream that one day I'll own a pair of $48,000 earrings but for now, we'll have to Spy It, Buy It.  If Melissa can afford them, well then she's my new bestest friend!

I spied this gorgeous, yet conservative, cocktail dress by Adam Lippes for $1,395.00.  I love the simple black conservative LBD (a/k/a little black dress) but the lace overlay gives it that "POW!" Melissa needs when standing by Daddy.  The shoes, who doesn't want a pair of "Red Bottom Shoes?"  Strappy with a little sheen and very tasteful.

Also, my biggest fear at a cocktail party where everyone is usually standing and travel mingling, is that someone will bump into me with a red glass of wine with red wine subsequently being poured all down my dress.  With a black LBD, this is not as much as a disaster as it seems and Melissa can quickly recover and return in the case of disaster.

Taking the inspiration and pairing it down to a much more affordable cost, I found this gorgeous dress at Nordstrom for $158.00.  And with a staple like this in her closet, there's bound to be many places she can wear this beautiful LBD.  The shoes are Ivanka Trump at Nordstrom and again are very tasteful for any LDB or any dress of any color for that matter.  Melissa is sure to get lots of use from these shoes.

The earrings are a little more on the pricey side however, Melissa could easily find some costume jewelry at her local department store that will dress up the cocktail dress and provide just a hint of "POW!" 

The only thing about this styling is the shoes versus pantyhose.  I am a Florida girl styling a Canadian with open toe shoes in December.  This may not be a good option for Melissa.  As an alternative, a simple black pump would suffice and most likely, Melissa already has these in her closet!

Melissa, I can't wait to see what you wear to this special event!  And congratulations to your entire family on this new role, what an exciting time for you all!

First of all, how great is Jennifer??? Second of all, how gorgeous are the outfits she came up with?!?!? I defiantly headed down to H&M and was on the hunt for that dress!

Thanks Jennifer for your help!! To see more of Jennifer's style (and her two adorable little girls), you can visit Southern Living: Preppy Style.

Wednesday 26 November 2014

Inaugural Fashion: Kathleen

It may have been mentioned once or twice that my dad is a politician. There was an election recently, which means I have an inauguration to attend! My life has been so busy and hectic the past few months, that I wasn't sure when I'd have time to figure out what to wear to the inauguration. So, I decide to reach out to some of my favourite bloggers and ask them to help.

One of those bloggers is Kathleen from Carrie Bradshaw Lied. I've always loved Kathleen's style and knew I just had to ask her for some style inspiration for the inauguration. 

When I reached out to Kathleen, she explained that she had a lot going on and wouldn't be able to style an outfit for me- which I completely understand. She did however

Kathleen suggested these two beautiful dresses from Nordstrom. Kathleen suggested, and I agree, that they are sophisticated, elegant and can be worn again for another special occasion.

Both of these dresses are beautiful and would be perfect for the inauguration!!

Thanks so much Kathleen for the dress suggestions! For more of Kathleen's style, check out her blog, Carrie Bradshaw Lied.

Santa Never Brings Me A Banjo

Happy Wednesday....half way through the week and I'm exhausted!!! The countdown to Christmas is on, not just because I love the holiday season, but because I'll also get some much needed time off of work!!!

It is well documented that I am a HUGE David Myles fan. He released a Christmas album this year, and while I love all of the songs on the album, this song is quickly becoming a new favourite:

Santa Never Brings Me a Banj0 by David Myles

Tuesday 25 November 2014

Hey, It's Ok

Airing My Dirty Laundry
That this is the last week to enter the $1650 cash giveaway!!! You can enter here
To be nervous excited about the Chamber Awards tonight. We have 6 nominations in total, including Best Non-Profit and I'm humbled to have been nominated for Employee of the Year. Fingers crossed that we win something.
That How to Get Away With Murder (the TV show) is insane!! Last weeks episode, the night of the bond fire, blew my mind! I can't wait to see what happens next!
To be hoping very, very, very, very hard that I get a good news phone call this week. Preferably today. 
That I'm counting down the days until Christmas...between vacation days, our office being closed and the holidays, I'll have a week and a half off. It's much needed.

Monday 24 November 2014

Inaugural Fashion: Sydney

It may have been mentioned once or twice that my dad is a politician. There was an election recently, which means I have an inauguration to attend! My life has been so busy and hectic the past few months, that I wasn't sure when I'd have time to figure out what to wear to the inauguration. So, I decide to reach out to some of my favourite bloggers and ask them to help.

The first blogger is Sydney from Summer Wind.I've always admired Sydney's classic style and knew she would be a perfect blogger to reach out to and ask to help inspire my outfit for the inauguration.

Sydney suggested this beautiful Elizabeth McKay dress:

I love this dress and can understand why Sydney picked it! It's classy and conservative- which is key for an inauguration- but the little bit of sparkle keeps it fun and age appropriate. 

Sydney actually owns this dress and featured it in a recent blog post; You can go here to see how she styled it.

Thanks so much Sydney for the style suggestion! For more of Sydney's style, check out her blog, Summer Wind.

Inspire Me: Why Not?

Happy Monday!! I can't believe that we are in the last week on November and that the Holiday Season is essentially here!! I have a busy week ahead of me; Christmas Dinner with my Sorority Sisters, Chamber Awards, work meetings and a kinda farewell lunch for a co-worker (she's leaving our office and moving to another one). There are some fun things coming up, but it will also be an insanely busy work week for me and I'm not looking forward to it.

In reflecting on the past little bit and knowing where I currently am in life and currently dealing with, I thought this quote would be great for this week's inspiration:

I'm finding myself, recently, in a position with I am being questioned on everything that I do...and I'm being questioned on personal things, that have nothing to do with my professional life, nor do they interfere professionally. I'm really bothered by it; I'm feeling disrespected and my invasion of privacy, and I'm feeling pressure to change who I am as a person, which I refuse to do. 

All of the questions and negativity has made me evaluate my life and my priorities. There are a lot of people who discourage me and question my actions. When they ask why, they are trying to create doubt, lower my self esteem and make me question and second guess myself. 

To all those people who ask me why, I ask them why not? You'd be surprised how many people are unable to answer 'why not?'...and if they can't answer that, if they don't have a valid reason for me not to do something, I tell myself that their questions and opinions don't matter in the situation. There is no reason for me not to do it.
Even if I am the one questioning myself, asking myself why, I then ask myself why not? And if I can't answer or come up with a reason not to do it...I know that I have no reason to doubt myself. I move forward. 

Tuesday 18 November 2014

Hey, It's Ok!

Airing My Dirty Laundry
That you still have time to enter the $1650 cash giveaway!!! You can enter here.
To need a break. I am so overworked and tired, it's ridiculous.
That I'm excited to see Royal Wood tonight!!! I love his music and he puts on a great show! It should be a fun night out.
To want the snow to go away. It's only been two days, but I'm over it.
That I am going to continue to laugh and be a happy person, even if my supervisor doesn't like it.

Tuesday 11 November 2014

Remeberance Day- Lest We Forget

Remember the sacrifices that our brave men and women have made fighting to give and preserve the freedom we share today. With bravery and strength they serve.
In Canada, today is Remembrance Day. This is the day that we honour and members of our armed forces; those who have served, are serving and, especially, those who have fallen. Canadians wear poppies to commemorate Remembrance Day.Poppies are worn from the last Friday in October until November 11, Remembrance Day. It is actually a sign of disrespect to wear poppy outside of this time frame (with a few exceptions).

Remembrance Day this year, to me, has more meaning as Canada honours and remembers Corporal Nathan Cirillo, who was killed on October 22 while on duty at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at the National War Museum, and Patrice Vincent who died October 20 in the parking lot of a federal building in a suspected terrorist attack.

There is a section of highway in Ontario, which has been named the Highway of Heroes. All of our fallen soldiers travel this stretch of highway and many Canadian line the overpass to pay their respects. It's a very moving tribute and a way for Canadians to say one of their final 'goodbye' and 'thank you' to our fallen heroes. 

Highway of Heroes by The Trews
Lest We Forget.

Monday 10 November 2014

Inspire Me- Expiration Date

Happy Monday!! I had a great weekend. I was able to leave work early on Friday, which allowed me to come home and rest- I was in a car accident a few weeks ago and am in constant pain with my neck, shoulder and was good to rest my back for a bit before starting my weekend. I spent the weekend in my hometown; so lots of time with family. 
I had a great talk with my dad on Saturday...he's going to 'assign' me a really fun, daunting, exciting project. I can't say too much about it yet...but I'm looking forward to the challenge! 

Sunday was a brunch that went on for hours with one of my really good friends. She's getting married this summer, so it was fun to hear about her wedding details. Home to rest for a bit before heading off to a wedding show with her and her mom. We were at the wedding show mostly to look at the dresses...she saw three that she really liked. 

I ended my weekend by stopping by a friends' art gallery Sunday night. I had a nice visit and chat with him and his girlfriend. They are such a great couple, perfect for each other. 

This week is going to be a busy week for me, with a number of long days. I have a HUGE event for work on Friday. It should be a funny event, but I'm not confident in it...there's a lot of unknowns and the committee is a bit...of a learning experience. Fingers crossed that everything will go according to plan and that we raise a TON of money.

It's going to be a very busy and very stressful week, so I will definitely need some inspiration:

This quote is such a great reminder. How many of us have dreams or goals that we start to pursue and give up on when things don`t go our way or we get too frustrated? I know that this has happened to me on more than one occasion.

It's so easy to have things fall apart and give up on our dreams. We need to remember that just because things didn't work out the way we wanted them too the first- or second or third or...- times, doesn't mean that it will never happen. 
Dreams and goals don't expire. You just have to keep working at them and keep believing until you accomplish what you set out to do. 

Take a deep breath. Try again, Eventually it will work. 

Things will work out the way they are supposed, when they are supposed too.

Thursday 6 November 2014

Book Club: Ten Beach Road

Book: Ten Beach Road
Author: Wendy Wax
Amazon Summary: 
Madeline, Avery, and Nikki are strangers to each other, but they have one thing in common. They each wake up one morning to discover their life savings have vanished, along with their trusted financial manager- leaving them with nothing but co-ownership of a ramshackle beachfront house.

Throwing their lots in together, they take on the challenge of restoring the historic property. But just as they begin to reinvent themselves and discover the power of friendship, secrets threaten to tear down their trust-and destroy their lives a second time.
What I have to say: 
I have no idea how this book ended up on my reading list or where I first hear of it. This book enjoyable, easy to get into and beach-y read. It was a bit predictable reminded me too much of Trust Fund Babies.

Like Trust Fund Babies, this book brought three completely different women together after their money and financial manager have gone missing. The women work together to overcome a challenge, while dealing with 'secrets' in their personal life, and the animosity grows to close friendship. In both books, there is a minor romance plot line and the financial manager even has a secret connection to one of the women. 

Even with a different setting and a different challenge to overcome, it was too similar. If I hadn't read Trust Fund Babies first, I think I would have enjoyed this book a lot more. Don't get me wrong, it was good book...just don't read it if you've already read Trust Fund Babies.

Wednesday 5 November 2014

October Topbox

Beauty subscriptions boxes are a favourite of bloggers and I am no exception. It's a bit harder for Canadian bloggers, because not all subscriptions boxes will ship to Canada, or the shipping charge is the same or more than the actual subscription box, etc.
I have been a dedicated subscriber to ipsy for almost two years- since it was first launched in Canada- and I do think it's great. But I've been feeling kind of meh about it and wanting to try something new. 

Topbox is a Canadian beauty subscription box. I had heard a lot of mixed reviews about Topbox, which is why I hadn't subscribed. A couple of months ago, I did try one of their limited edition boxes, and was pretty happy about the value and products, so I thought I'd give the monthly subscription a try.

Topbox is around $14 month, including shipping, and you get 4 samples. You can choose regular packaging or 'environmentally friendly' packaging, which is a reusable organza bag. Also, each month you can create a 'wish list'. Basically, you have the option to keep the products picked that month (which is a surprise until you receive them) or trade it in for something else- 10 perfume samples, two full size Elizabeth Arden products, etc- for the same price. You can add as many options to your wish list as you'd like, but you're not guaranteed to get what you pick. I also like that Topbox includes a card with a description and price of the product and where you can buy it.

For my first Topbox, I was pretty happy. Here's what I got:


  1. Bioderma Sensible H2O Micelle Solution: This cleanses face and eyes, and removes water resistant make up. It's for normal to dry skin, and it did leave my super dry skin feeling a little bit hydrated and soothed.
    Retail Value: $21.95 (250mL)
    Topbox Value: $8.78 (100mL)
  2. Lancome Genifique Yeux Light-Pearl: This is an "eye-illuminating youth activating concentrate". So, basically, to make the area around your eyes look youthful and eliminate wrinkles. No idea if this works, but it can't hurt. I like the applicator it came with and I am a fan of Lancome products to begin with. It was also nice to see a "high end" brand.
    Retail Value: $88 (20mL)
    Topbox Value: $22 (5mL)
  3. China Glaze Nail Lacquer in Seas the Day: This is a really pretty colour! I wasn't sure I would like the colour, but I do. It had a nice shiny finish and apparently, uses China Clay, which is a nail hardener.
    Retail Value: $10-12 (14mL)
    Topbox Value: $10-12 (14mL)
  4. Benefit Cosmetics they're real! push-up liner: This is the only product that I will not use...but I don't wear any eyeliner, ever. It's a "lash hugging gel liner in a pen". Since I know nothing about eyeliner, no idea if this is good or not.
    Retail Value:  $27 (1.4g)
    Topbox Value: $1.92 (0.10g)
Total Retail Value: $146.95 (I'm using the $10 price for the nail polish)
Total Topbox Value:  $42.70 (I'm using the $10 price for the nail polish)
What I paid: $13.56

The value of the box is great, compared to what I paid. I'm pretty happy, especially since I like and will use 3 of the 4 products.  For now, I'm going to keep the monthly subscription...I can't wait to see what I get this month!

Tuesday 4 November 2014

Hey, It's Ok

Airing My Dirty Laundry
To be party of a really great giveaway...someone is going to win $1650 cash!! You can enter here.

That I spent the weekend getting caught up on blog felt good.

To have gotten sucked in by 19 Kids And Counting...I, for years, purposely made the point to never watch this show. Then, a month ago, there was nothing else on TV and I watched an episode. Now, I watch it every week. Ugh.

That I per-ordered David Myles Christmas CD on the weekend. You can get it here.

To wish I could delete my work email, and just start over. I have over 300 emails I need to deal with.

Monday 3 November 2014

Inspire Me- Courage

Happy Monday!!! I can't believe it\s November already!! I hope everyone had a great Halloween and weekend! 

My co-workers and I dressed up as a road crew, so that was pretty fun. My weekend was really low key. I was able to leave work early on Friday (that happens when you work 20+ hours in two days) and escape to my parents weekend house. My cousin and her daughter came over Friday night, Saturday I went to a craft show and ran errands in the morning. The afternoon was spent getting caught up on blog related stuff- mostly emails. Sunday, I did more blog stuff, read and relaxed. It was relaxing weekend.

Also, I've teamed up with a bunch of great bloggers for an amazing giveaway...someone is going to win $1650 cash!! You can enter here.
This weeks inspiration:

It's so easy to get into a routine and just settle for what you have. It's easy to sit there and think "I wish..." or "What if..." or "It would be great...". So many people give up on their dreams, dreams as big as being an astronaut and dreams as small as being happy. 
People get discouraged, frustrated, negative thoughts take over. I think the biggest factor in not pursuing dreams, is failure. People fear failure. It's easy to get scared, not want to fail, give up and just stick with what you have.

My dreams have been put on the back burner for too long. I know I need to make changes in my life, some small and some drastic, but changes need to be made. I've know this for months. Changes don't always mean improvements, and I really can't let things get worse. 

I've taken small steps to get my dreams back on track. I'm working on that courage thing.

Saturday 1 November 2014

Giveaway: $1650 Cash

Happy Saturday and Happy November!! I have teamed up with Angel and some of her friends for an AMAZING giveaway!!

One incredibly lucky person will be winning a CASH PRIZE of $1650!!! The winner will receive their cash prize on Black Friday so they can start shopping for Christmas.

You can enter using the Rafflecopter below...there are two parts, so make sure you do both. GOOD LUCK!!!
Part 1 a Rafflecopter giveaway  
Part 2 a Rafflecopter giveaway

Please read the rules of sweepstakes and contests held at Sew Crafty Angel.
Giveaway is open worldwide to participants with a verified PayPal account.
All entries will be verified. In the event an entry can not be verified participant chooses to forfeit that entry and another winner will be chosen.
Winner has 48 hours to respond to the winning email.
Giveaway will run from October 31st 11:59 PM CST to November 22nd, 12 AM CST
Any taxes or fees associated with the winnings of this contest are the sole responsibility of the winner according to their county, state and/or country laws.
Prize money to be distributed by Angel Allen from Sew Crafty Angel.
CASH prize is in US Dollars and will not be converted to any foreign currency.
Void where prohibited by law.