Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Beauty Must-Haves for your Gym Bag


 wearing: white tee // workout pants // Reebok shoes (not online)

You guys know how I was working out like crazy before my wedding in June? Well, I'm now back on the workout train again after taking some time off after our wedding. For the past couple of weeks, I've been running to the gym or a pure barre class in the morning and then straight to run errands or to a lunch date afterwards - so packing a few makeup essentials in my gym bag is a must! I obviously don't wear makeup during my workout, but I do like to wash my face and apply it afterwards if I'm going to be out in public. This makeup routine can be done in less than 5-minutes (even in your car!) and there's not an overabundance of products - you don't need much makeup after a workout because of that coveted post-workout glow! 

Anyway, these are the products that I always carry in my gym bag (and the best part is that they can all be found at Nordstrom!): 

It's not shown, but the first thing I do after a workout is cleanse my face with a facial cleansing cloth to wipe away sweat and any leftover makeup from the previous day!

This moisturizer is expensive but sooo worth it! I buy it in the 0.5 oz size and it's the perfect size for my gym bag. It keeps my skin feeling hydrated and soft and serves as a great primer underneath foundation. It also smells heavenly.

This is the perfect tinted moisturizer to throw on after a workout - it covers up imperfections and softens lines but doesn't even look like you have on makeup! It also has SPF 20 in it which I LOVE for keeping your skin protected from the sun. I like wearing a tinted moisturizer in the summertime so that your skin can breathe!

Alright, even after the gym, I can't live without a mascara primer! This one is the creme de la creme, the best of the best!

My favorite mascara. I literally ALWAYS have a tube of this on my person, whether it's in my gym bag or handbag! It's the best for lengthening and thickening your lashes.

This brow pencil is perfect for filling in and brushing your brows. One side of the pencil has the color; the other side has a brow brush. I've been using this product for years and swear by it!

This lip balm doesn't have much color to it, but I love the way it makes my lips feel - smooth like butter! It also keeps them hydrated for long periods of time, so you don't have to keep re-applying.

And that's it! Like I said, it's so easy that you can go through the entire makeup routine in your car (which I often do!). All of these products are available at Nordstrom, my go-to place for all things beauty. Let me know if you have any questions! xoxox!

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*Thanks to Nordstrom for sponsoring this post

Friday, August 10, 2018

Our Wedding Bands

wedding bands by Henri Daussi via Diamonds Direct (here is my specific band) c/o
wedding invitations by If It's Paper // wedding photography by Bethany Small

Good morning and HAPPY FRIDAY, friends! I'm so excited to be sharing another wedding post today, this time about our wedding bands! Chris and I got our bands from Diamonds Direct, the same place that Chris got my engagement ring more than a year ago. Shopping for wedding bands was quite an experience, since Chris had NO idea what he wanted (which I'm sure is normal for most guys!). I, on the other hand, knew exactly what I wanted - this stunning Henri Daussi infinity band (photos can't even do it justice you guys!). Since this was a really special process for Chris, he actually volunteered to write this post.... (yes I am just as surprised as you all, hahah). 

Chris will take it from here!

This may come to a shock to some of you, but I am not a shopper… I try to spend the absolute least amount of time in the store as I possibly can. Whether it’s grocery shopping, shopping for clothes, or even online shopping, I try to get what I need and go about my day as quickly as possible. Needless to say, engagement ring shopping terrified me. For one, I know nothing about engagement rings, or jewelry for that matter. It’s completely out of my wheelhouse. Luckily, most of my friends “took the plunge” before me, and were very helpful with giving me advice on how to get started. I talked to a countless number of friends who have been married within the past couple years, and they all had one thing in common… they went to Diamonds Direct for their engagement ring. 

Because I know nothing about jewelry, Caitlin and I went to Diamonds Direct together for the first time so that I could get an idea of what she wanted. As soon as we walked in, I knew this was the place. As naïve as I was to the whole “ring shopping experience,” it was like walking through the closet to Narnia. It was a completely different world. I had no idea that there were so many different styles, colors, shapes and characteristics of rings. I definitely felt overwhelmed, but everyone was extremely helpful with showing us the large selection and explaining the “4 C’s”, so even I could understand. When the time came to actually buy engagement ring, I, naturally, went back to Diamonds Direct and worked with the same team that had helped us earlier. 

Once I had purchased the perfect engagement ring, I thought I was made. Caitlin eventually said “YES” to become my future wife, and we were full in the wedding planning stages (that experience is a whole other story). Then, the question came…. “What do you want your wedding band to look like?" I knew nothing about engagement rings for her, but I surprisingly knew even less about wedding rings for me. I had no idea what I wanted to wear for the rest of my life, I hardly knew what I wanted wear to work the next day. The only thing I knew for sure was that we were going back to where it all began.

Caitlin and I unanimously agreed that we were going back to Diamonds Direct for our wedding bands. At this point, I felt like a veteran in the ring buying game, so I went into the store thinking I knew what I was doing. I hadn’t looked at rings for myself in my previous trips, so I was in awe of all the wedding ring selection. From conversations with my friends, I knew about the different styles, but when it came down to it, I didn’t know what was right “for me.” Silver? Gold? Platinum? Brushed Platinum? Diamonds or gemstones? I had no idea. Thankfully, Diamonds Direct was there, yet again, to save the day.

Looking back on it, I must have looked like a kid in a candy store, excitingly overwhelmed with all the possibilities. The team we worked with was so helpful with helping answering all of my questions and giving me a large selection of different styles and designs to try on. She may kill me, but I was more indecisive than Caitlin is at a fast-food drive thru.

The team was so patient with me throughout the entire process, and we ultimately landed on the perfect ring for me. I wanted something more subtle and what I considered a more “manly” looking ring, and they helped me get exactly that. I really liked the look of brushed platinum, but I wanted a touch of gold, too, to make it more unique. With Diamonds Direct's help, we came up with a vision for what my perfect ring would look like, and then Henri Daussi designed the ring just for me.

Here's a rendering they sent us before they started production on the ring: 


I couldn't be happier with my wedding ring. I find myself looking at, and playing with, the ring more often than I’d like to admit. The ring is brushed platinum with gold trim, and it’s the perfect mix of manly with a hint of flashy thanks to the gold accents. Aside from the clothes Caitlin helps pick out for me, it’s definitely the best article/accessory I wear, and I would never have found it if it wasn’t for the Diamonds Direct teams’ help. Thank you so much to Diamonds Direct for an amazing experience and helping a naïve jewelry shopper like me find the perfect rings.


Thanks to Diamonds Direct and Henri Daussi for providing us our beautiful wedding bands! Here are a few more pictures of the gorgeous bands so you can get a better view :) Every time I look down at my wedding ring + band together it makes me so happy, because it's such a lovely reminder of our marriage and how grateful I am to be married to Chris. 

As always, let me know in the comments if you have any questions!!

xoxo

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Travel Guide: Amalfi Coast, Italy


Good morning, everyone!! Today's travel guide is from the last stop on our honeymoon: Italy! We decided to add the Amalfi Coast onto our itinerary after I visited last year and had the most magical experience. My trip last year was actually RIGHT after Chris proposed, so it was extra meaningful. And the crazy part is this: although we both LOVE, LOVE, LOVED Greece, we actually both agreed that we loved Italy more! Especially Ravello :) I'm rounding up some Instagrams below, but scroll down for the full review!

P.S. You can find my Mykonos Guide HERE and my Santorini Guide HERE


The infinity pool at the Belmond Caruso Hotel in Ravello. We spent an entire day out here! The water was so refreshing and the view was INSANE.


Exploring the cute streets of Ravello. There are a lot of cute art and pottery shops and if you want to purchase anything they will ship it home to you.


Balcony kisses at our hotel!! This was the night we ordered room service for dinner and ate it on our private balcony,


Another shot of our private balcony at the Belmond Caruso.


Villa Rufolo gardens in Ravello. I highly recommend visiting!

 



We took a day trip to Positano, it was offered complimentary from our hotel! The following picture was taken from Hotel Poseidon.
 
off-the-shoulder dress // Stuart Weitzman heels, similar but less expensive HERE


My handsome HUBBY!!


 Our last night in Ravello :( But the sunsets were INSANE!!!


Chris and I specifically stayed in Ravello, but I highly recommend that if you're traveling all the way to Ravello, that you stay and hang out and explore more of the Amalfi Coast! Chris and I chose Ravello because it's less touristy than some of the other cities on the Amalfi Coast. We felt like we were really getting an authentic taste of Italy. It's also SUPER romantic, with its luxury hotels and lush, blooming gardens. Ravello is located high in the mountains, while some of the other towns (like Amalif and Positano) are located right next to the ocean. We personally liked that Ravello was in the mountains - it was much cooler there temperature-wise, and you get the best birds eye views of the Amalfi Coast!

HOW TO GET TO RAVELLO
Since Ravello is high up in the mountains, the only way to get there is by land. We were coming from Santorini, so we used Volotea Airlines to fly from Santorini to Naples. The airplane was really small but I have no bad things to say about Volotea. We had arranged transportation with our hotel, so a driver picked us up from the Naples airport and drove us to our hotel in Ravello (around a one-hour drive if I remember correctly!). Ravello is pretty easy to reach from any town on the Amalfi Coast, you will just need to hire a driver to get there!

WHERE TO STAY IN RAVELLO
Ravello is known for its incredibly luxurious, romantic hotels, and I highly recommend splurging on one!! They're AMAZING. Here are my two favorites:

  • Belmond Caruso: I had been dreaming about staying at this hotel ever since I visited Ravello last year. I'm not kidding when I say that it's my favorite hotel in the ENTIRE WORLD. Chris and I are already planning an anniversary trip back because we loved it so much! I want to cry when I think about this hotel, THAT is how much I loved it. It's like stepping into a beautiful castle where you are King and Queen and everyone treats you just like that! Chris and I opted for our own private suite with balcony while we were at this hotel. The room had a beautiful tile floor and an AMAZING balcony with lush pink flowers all around. We had an all-marble bathroom with a large tub and even a little outdoor shower! We loooooved the food at the Belmond, too. We ordered lots of pasta from the room service menu, and the (complimentary) breakfast spread every morning is out of this world. There is an entire breakfast room filled with pastries, cheese, yogurts, fruits (and basically any vegetable item you can think of), you fill up your plate and then sit down in the dining room/balcony with a spectacular birds eye view of the entire Amalfi Coast. The breakfast is also served on beautiful Italian china - and the COFFEE. Oh my GOSH the coffee is so good! When you're ready to relax, head out to the infinity pool with - again - the prettiest view of the Amalfi Coast. We were served rose by the pool and then had the best pizza at the poolside cafe. Honestly, this entire hotel provides one of the best travel experiences I've ever had in my life! 
  • Palazzo Avino: Last year when I visited the Amalfi Coast, we stayed at Palazzo Avino for two nights in Ravello. Everything about this hotel was spectacular. We opted for the Junior Suite with sea view since we were traveling with three people (the suite has room for an extra bed). It was GORGEOUS. Our room had lots of windows, three separate balconies and the prettiest view of the coast, along with very comfortable beds, an all-marble bathroom and a sitting area. In the bathroom there were plush robes and slippers for all three of us, and a staff member brought up a complimentary bottle of prosecco right after we checked into our hotel. The grounds of Palazzo Avino are also beautiful - there are two hot tubs on the roof, a pool spa, outdoor gym and many outdoor seating areas. The reception was extremely helpful in showing us around and also booking a dinner reservation for us. Although I really liked Palazzo Avino, I do think that the Belmond was even a step further in luxury. Both are amazing, though!
WHERE TO EAT IN RAVELLO
Although we loved the food in Greece, Chris and I both agreed that the food in Ravello was even better (we don't even know how that is possible!). We stuffed ourselves on cheese, pasta, pizza with cheese-filled crust, tomatoes, bread with olive oil and balsamic, and gelato. And more. We ate and ate and ate, and loved every minute of it. :)

Lunch/Appetizers
  • Belmond Caruso pool cafe: Definitely check out the pool bar, you can dine right beside the infinity pool for lunch. Order the pizza and any dessert you can get your hands on.
  • Palazzo Avino: We shared a bunch of appetizers at Palazzo Avino's cafe for lunch. They all tasted like they came straight from the garden - fresh and delicious. 

Drinks
  • Belmond Caruso Terrace: The prettiest view everrrrrr!!
  • Palazzo Avino Terrace: The Palazzo Avino serves a mean spritz (a wine-based cocktail) which you have to try while you're in Italy. Enjoy a view of the coastline while you're sipping and enjoying countless Castelvetrano Olives.
  • Luigi's Bar: A great little hidden bar only a few steps away from the Belmond and Palazzo Avino. This is a great casual place for pre-dinner cocktails! 

Dinner
  • Mimi's Pizzeria: We had the best pizza of our entire trip in this restaurant! This is a very casual pizzeria located in Ravello. It wasn't touristy at all and the pizza and drinks were incredibly affordable. We had made reservations ahead of time, but we ended up having to wait a little bit for our table, so they gave us complimentary champagne to make up for it (which was fine with us). Chris and I ordered a gnocchi dish and a pizza with ricotta-stuffed crust and woooooow. I will remember that pizza for the rest of my life! 
  • Cumpa' Cosimo: This was one of mine and Chris's favorite restaurants from our entire honeymoon! This is a really small and very authentic restaurant in Ravello, and we walked in and immediately felt at home. Chris and I each ordered the pasta sampler, which includes three or four of their best pasta dishes - and it was AMAZING. Also, we got a bottle of Chianti here and it was also our favorite wine that we had on the trip! After we ate, the owner came up to us and gave us apricots from her garden for dessert. 
  • Rossellinis: If you're feeling fancy, opt for Rossellinis, the Michelin Star restaurant at Palazzo Avino, and try the 7-course tasting menu. 
WHAT TO DO IN RAVELLO
  • Visit the gardens. Ravello is home to two gardens, both of which are a quick walk from the hotels: Villa Cimbrone and Villa Rufolo. Tickets are only a few euro each, and you can purchase upon entry and then explore. We spent the morning at Villa Rufolo and it was beautiful to see all of the flowers! Plus there's a little museum where you can learn about the history the gardens. 
  • Take a day-trip! The Belmond offers FREE day trips to both Amalfi and Positano. We took a day trip to Positano and it was so fun to show Chris. We ate lunch at Chez Black on the beach (I ordered a heart-shaped pizza), then walked up to Hotel Poseidon for gelato and a glass of  wine. Next we headed to le Sirenuse for a drink on their patio. It was suuuuuch a pretty hotel and made me wish that we had booked a couple of nights there, too! I tried their signature champagne cocktail but I can't remember what it is called. 
  • Give yourself a self-guided tour of town. There are a few dozen super cute shops to poke in and out of. Spend the day window shopping, eating gelato and tasting limoncello.
  • Celebrate happy hour on the plaza - any of the al fresco dining options will make you a perfect spritz. The plaza is really cute, too, and you can also enter the church and read about the history! 
  • Take a cooking class. We wanted to sign up for Mama Agata's cooking class but didn't have time - we've heard it's a must-do in Ravello. The cooking class starts at 10 a.m. and is a full affair so be prepared to stay all day and leave fully satisfied.
  • Relax! Ravello was practically built for relaxation. Book a spa appointment at the Belmond's award-winning spa (I got the "muscle melt" massage) or simply spend the afternoon laying by the pool, reading. 
    WHAT TO WEAR IN RAVELLO
    It's a little cooler in Ravello because it's on top of a mountain - and we loved that!! Our hotel had a dress code for breakfast, and everything in Ravello seemed SUPER fancy, so I would definitely recommend bringing nice dress clothes (both men and women). Chris wore his loafers here and he didn't wear them any other time on our trip. Sundresses are nice, as well as long, flowy maxi dresses and maxi skirts. Definitely bring a pair of heels or wedges for dinner, but be sure you can walk in them!

    Let me know if you have any questions about Ravello!!! xoxo

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    Friday, August 3, 2018

    Nordstrom Sale Items that are Still in Stock!




    Hinge Feminine Leather Moto Jacket in "beige morn" (still available!) // B.P. Ribbed V-Neck Tee //
    Lucky Brand Yabba Wedge in "grey suede" (still available!) // similar monogram necklace

    Happy FRIDAY, friends! There are only a few days left to shop the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale before prices go back up on August 6th! I wanted to share this outfit that I wore from Highlands a few weeks ago (don't worry, it was much cooler there - in the 60s!). There's still some availability in a bunch of the items I'm wearing, such as my baker boy capleather moto jacket and wedge booties! The leather jacket was one of my favorite buys from the sale and I plan to wear it all fall and winter long. I normally am not ready for fall yet, but it has been SOOO hot out lately and seeing all of the cute fall clothes really makes me crave cooler weather! And maybe even a pumpkin spice latte too!

    I also wanted to update you on a few items I ordered from the Nordstrom Sale and have been testing out! I got this eyelash serum and have been using it every night for the past two weeks (right before I go to bed). It might be too early to tell but I think my eyelashes look a little thicker every day! It might all be in my head since I think you have to use the product for longer to see a difference, hahah. The serum is still available and is on sale if you want it! Another item I've been getting some questions about is this dimmable LED mirror. My bathroom can be dark in the morning when I put my makeup on, and this mirror has been a game changer! I really like how you can adjust the lighting if it's too bright or too dark. And it comes with a cute little compact mirror that I've been keeping in my purse. I think it was 100% worth the purchase :)

    I'm going on a really fun trip this weekend, so stay tuned to my Instastories :) 

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    *Thank you to Nordstrom for sponsoring this post

    Wednesday, August 1, 2018

    Mini House Tour (Part Two)

    Revolve gingham dress (available in all sizes!) // Valentino sandals

    Good morning, loves!! I'm happy to back today to share the rest of downstairs house tour (if you missed part one, you can check it out HERE), so sit back and relax - and maybe pour a glass of wine cause this post is long and there are tons of pictures! Like I mentioned in my last post, I'm still not through with everything, so this post is more like a progress update rather than a final reveal! I also want to point out that a bunch of items in today's post are included in the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, which ends on August 5th. Two of my favorite items on sale are my area rugs, specifically this runner rug in my kitchen and this one in the keeping room. You can find some really beautiful rugs on Nordstrom for some great prices right now! Anyway, let's get started!

    KITCHEN







    Shop my Kitchen:


    PANTRY

    read my full pantry post HERE

    Shop my Pantry:


    KEEPING ROOM











    Pottery Barn slipcovered sectional sofa // living room rug (on sale!!)
    tufted ottoman // upholstered recliner // monogrammed coasters (on sale!!) // framed photographs
    blue and white tray // wooden lamps // end table // mirrored chest of drawers
    pillows here, here, here & here // blue fringe blanket
    fuzzy dog bed (on sale!) // pom pom canvas bins (on sale!)
    white metal lantern

    Shop my Keeping Room:



    SCREENED-IN PORCH




    All outdoor furniture from Frontgate
    french bistro set  from Homegoods, similar HERE

    Shop my Screened-In Porch:



    Thanks so much for reading! You'll notice that I haven't shown my main living room that Ballard Designs helped me with - stay tuned because the big reveal is coming soon! Also, I had a ton of questions about our framed wedding photos in our keeping room - we used a website called Framebridge and it was SUPER EASY to do! All I did was upload our wedding photos to their site and then I picked out my frames (I went with these frames) and the size I wanted. Less than a week later, the frames arrived at our house with our wedding photos inside. Everything was already assembled for us, and they even sent the right hardware so that we could mount it to our walls. I highly recommend using them for any digital photos you want framed!

    Let me know if you have any questions in the comment section below :)

    xoxo