Lifestyle / February 9, 2017

Valentine’s Day Date Night Ideas

PC: Gummergal

Valentine’s Day is just a few short days away, and if you are anything like Thomas and I you find yourself doing the same thing year after year to celebrate. Cue dinner and a movie. It is not due to the lack of creativity, it is honestly because time gets away and then we find ourselves trying to brainstorm a date night last minute, which omits all creativity and we settle on the easiest plan. I love Valentine’s Day, yes it may be considered a ‘hallmark holiday’, but I love the excuse to purchase/make cheesy valentines and do cute things for one another, so this year I want to be more creative with how we spend Valentine’s Day. This had me thinking about numerous fun (and mostly inexpensive) ways to spend the ‘holiday’ with your significant other or even just with your closest pals, and I narrowed it down to my top 20 ideas:

1. Breakfast in bed: whether you choose to do this the morning of, or have dinner for breakfast, get cozy, relax, & eat in bed.

2. Overnight getaway: Get a hotel room for the night, explore the city, eat, and enjoy a night away from home.

3. Wine night: I love this! Have a wine tasting at home, you can purchase a few wines that you have never tried before, pair it with some good food, good company, and a good show/movie and you have the perfect date night at home.

4. Game night: Invite a few friends over for a friendly competitive night of games, drinks, and snacks.

5. Cook a meal together: This is a great way to enjoy one another’s company, cook a meal together (something that you have never made prior) and the two of you can spend time together preparing the dish and then enjoy eating it too!

PC:Annawithlove

6. Fondue night: This is like having a romantic dinner together but with a twist! There are so many fun variations of fondue, you can have it be the main dish and be savory, or you can enjoy it for dessert and go sweet! I like the idea of all of the above!

7. Go out for dessert: If you want to be low-key this Valentine’s Day you can have dinner at home, but still go out to enjoy a sweet dessert, whether it be going to a restaurant and only getting dessert, or hitting up the local ice-cream shop, you need to get your sweets in on V-Day.

8. Home movie night: Get cozy and stay in! Round up all your favorite movies, get your favorite snacks, and watch movies all night long.

9. Indulge on takeout: Calories clearly do not count on Valentine’s Day, so aside from your favorite treats order your favorite takeout food and ENJOY.

10. Beer tasting: Find a local brewery and partake in a beer tasting and or a tour of the brewery.

PC: Abeautifulmess

11. Wine and paint: Get boozy with your lover while painting a masterpiece! You can usually find great deals for these classes on Groupon.

12. Pot luck dinner: Invite your closest pals over and have everyone bring a dish for dinner.

13. Picnic: If the weather is warm enough pack up a meal and have a picnic, or you can always set up a romantic ‘picnic’ at home if the weather does not permit!

14. Be a tourist for the day: Explore your city as if you were a tourist, partake is things that you wouldn’t normally do, explore and discover new aspects about where you live!

15. Take a bike ride

PC: Pinterest

16. Dinner Crawl: Have appetizers at one place, then move on to another restaurant for dinner, and then so on for dessert!

17. Take a class together: Nothing brings couples together more than partaking in an activity together, take a workout class or dance class with one another- it could be fun!

18. Go to a comedy show.

19. Drive-in movie: If you do plan to go see a movie, change it up and go to a drive-in theater.

20. Couples massage.

 

 

Enjoy & Happy Valentine’s Day!

xoxo, Nicole

 

Share:
Fashion / December 2, 2016

Small Outfit Roundup & Quick Life Update

img_5763

Processed with VSCO with hb1 preset
                                            How beautiful is Chicago during the holiday season?! I just had to share! 

img_5744

Thanksgiving has come and gone and now we welcome December! But does anyone else feel as if they need a week of recovery following Thanksgiving? Once Thanksgiving hits I am in complete holiday mode; so the work weeks leading up to Christmas seem to drag. Not to mention  we have been SO busy! In the midst of preparing for the holidays, decorating, traveling, gift shopping, organizing holiday parties, and finishing up last minute projects for the year- we decided to rescue a puppy.. Not just your average puppy either, we rescued a 5 week old puppy who truly needs more attention than an infant. As some of you may have seen from my Instagram photos, she is the sweetest little Siberian husky named Aspen 🙂 After hearing that her mama was no longer caring for her I knew we had to take her in and nurture her. It was not easy. The first few nights she was waking up every hour to go potty, she was on a strict feeding schedule, and we were still providing puppy formula for her so that she could receive all the necessary nutrients that she was no longer receiving from her mama’s milk. But we survived! She is sleeping almost entirely though the night now and solely eating puppy food– she still has not been vaccinated yet (due to her young age) so we cannot take her to public places yet and we need to be very careful when we take her outside to potty. It has all been worth it though because she is so sweet and adorable, I will provide more photos of her for y’all soon! Aside from being busy caring for TWO dogs now, Thomas and I are busy prepping for our holiday party that we are hosting next week. We decided on an ugly christmas sweater party, we think it’ll be fun to celebrate the holiday while getting a good laugh from the ugly sweaters that our friends wear and or make. 

I may have been busy the past few weeks but that did not stop me from shopping and taking advantage of  the great deals stores were having over the weekend and on Cyber Monday. Is it just me or did it feel as if the deals this year were incredible! I purchased so many great items, including this fun blue holiday sweater and plaid scarf. I am usually all about wearing neutrals (I can’t help it) but this gorgeous blue caught my eye and I am so glad I purchased it!  For sizing reference, the sweater does run small; so I suggest going one size up, this will also provides a more relaxed and cozy fit as well! 

I have linked my outfit details below along with a few other goodies I purchased over the weekend. PS; my sweater is currently on sale for $25!

Share:
Lifestyle / November 10, 2016

Holiday Gift Guide: Gifts Under $50!

yas

It is that time of year again! 

As of today there are only 45 days left until Christmas… I cannot fathom how fast this year has gone. 45 days may seem as if you have all the time in the world to shop and mark everyone off your shopping list, but lets be honest those days will fly by and the absolute worst feeling is when you realize Christmas is only a week away and you have yet to begin your holiday shopping. When it comes to holiday shopping, one of my favorite aspects is when stores provide suggested gifts for the holidays, this provides an abundance of great ideas and truly does make the shopping process a bit more smooth. We all have that one lady on our list who we cannot seem to find the perfect gift for, either she has everything or you are worried that she will not enjoy any present that you give her. With that being said, I wanted to share with you a holiday gift guide to ensure that your holiday shopping goes smoothly, all these gifts are under $50 and each would make an amazing present for someone on your list! 

I will be sharing a ‘Holiday Gift Guide For Him’ later this week, so stay tuned 🙂  

Xoxo,

Nicole 

screen-shot-2016-11-10-at-9-28-06-amscreen-shot-2016-11-10-at-9-36-29-amscreen-shot-2016-11-10-at-9-26-27-am

screen-shot-2016-11-10-at-9-41-51-am screen-shot-2016-11-10-at-9-55-22-am           screen-shot-2016-11-10-at-9-56-32-am

screen-shot-2016-11-10-at-9-35-14-am      screen-shot-2016-11-10-at-9-32-47-am        screen-shot-2016-11-10-at-9-52-26-am

screen-shot-2016-11-10-at-9-48-56-am        screen-shot-2016-11-10-at-9-40-09-am       screen-shot-2016-11-10-at-9-30-09-am

screen-shot-2016-11-10-at-9-24-03-am   screen-shot-2016-11-10-at-9-54-21-am              screen-shot-2016-11-10-at-10-02-55-am

 screen-shot-2016-11-10-at-9-31-36-am                screen-shot-2016-11-10-at-9-50-35-am                   screen-shot-2016-11-10-at-9-49-54-am

            

Share:
Fashion / November 9, 2016

Pop of Red for the Holidays

212

 

If you have been following along with my posts as of late then you already know that it is beginning to look a lot like Christmas within my home, I know it may seem too early for some- but I love the holidays and I become so excited about them the minute the last trick-or-treater stops by for candy. Decorating my home, listening to holiday music, baking cookies, and shopping for gifts are just a few of my favorite aspects of the holidays, but I also love incorporating holiday colors into my wardrobe; more specifically the color red. I enjoy taking my outfits to the next level during the holidays by adding pops of red through accessorizing, wearing a beautiful red top, and even sporting a red lip more than I usually would. This outfit captures the pop of red perfectly, I took a neutral outfit and added red with my scarf, my purse, and my lipstick color. Lets just say I am obsessed with this look! The key to successfully adding red to your outfit is to remember not to over do it, you do not want your outfit to be overwhelmed with red, but instead slightly rouged with red. I have recently purchased a handful of new red pieces that I cannot wait to add to my outfits over the next few weeks, I simply cannot resit when I am browsing a store and I see a beautiful red handbag or a classy red pump!

Below I am sharing my outfit details from above as well as a handful of red pieces that you can add to your outfits this holiday season.

Enjoy!

Sale Alert!

  • Express :$25 off a purchase of $100 or more and buy one item get another item 50% off! Now through November 10th.
  • J.Crew : 25% off your entire purchase- cardholders receive 30% off! Now through November 13th.
  • Nordstrom’s is having their Fall Clearance Sale, great items are up to 40% off

Outfit Details:

Currently Swooning Over:

Share:
Fashion / November 7, 2016

All Black With a Neutral Touch

img_5334-copy

 

Happy Monday, loves! Can you believe that it is already November? This year is flying by and I am already getting excited for the holidays! Which is why I may or may not have put up our Christmas decorations yesterday against Thomas’ will. I love being able to enjoy the tree and decorations as long as possible, so I always decorate fairly early in November. I cannot wait to celebrate the holidays with all of you and I have an abundance of holiday related posts planned to share over the next two months, I am so excited! 🙂 Okay, aside from getting excited for the holidays and decorating the house; my weekend was fairly busy. On Friday Chicago held a parade and rally to celebrate the Chicago Cubs for winning the World Series, something that had previously not been done in Chicago for 108 years- you can only imagine how big the celebration was! More than 5 million fans showed up to cheer on the team, I read that it was the 7th largest human gathering in documented history, and oh man do I believe that. It was packed. We had to wake up at the crack of dawn just to make it downtown early enough to have a semi-decent view of the rally. It was totally worth it and it was so fun to be a part of! We had friends in town for the celebration, so afterwards we went to Homeslice to grab some much needed pizza. If you have never tried Chicago pizza you seriously need to do so at some point in your life, it is incredible. Then on Saturday I wore this outfit for a casual day of running some errands, I love this outfit and it has been perfect for the unusually warm weather we have been having here in Chicago. I love dressing for the fall weather so I refuse to wear short sleeves during the fall months, despite the weather reaching the mid 70s the past few weeks. My go-to outfit to semi dress for this weather has been a lightweight sweater topped with an oversized scarf, I am not torturing myself with layers, but I can easily add another layer for when the cool evening temperatures roll in. I purchased the sweater last week and I have quickly become obsessed with it, it is so soft and I love how it is a little longer in the back so that I can wear it with leggings. Also these faux leather leggings are AWESOME! They are shape fitting, which means they hold all the goodies in and are flattering on all body types, I have larger thighs and have never been able to find a faux leather legging that did not draw too much attention to that area. However I feel so comfortable and confident wearing these- I highly recommend trying them out. 

You can shop these leggings, as well as the rest of the outfit, by clicking on the images below. I also want to point out that I recently purchased my scarf from Target for $19.99- however, I could not find it on the website so I posted a similar one!

Enjoy!

Share:
Beauty / October 26, 2016

Lush

Processed with VSCO with hb1 preset

Photo By: BlogLovin

Earlier in the week I was out to dinner with a good friend, we were at Tuco & Blondie indulging on chips and guac, tacos, and margaritas. Pretty much my ideal night and it only got better as we were walking home and passed by a Lush store. It is no secret that I love a good product haul from Lush; all their products are made with wholesome and natural ingredients and the brand is 100% against testing their products on animals. I love knowing that I am supporting a positive brand that promotes amazing standards and amazing products. So of course we had to walk in and browse all the goodies, we were greeted by an exceptional sales associate and OMG was he wonderful! He convinced me that I basically needed everything in the store. 45 minutes later I walked out with  a bag full of goods and a significant hit to my bank account. Totally worth it. I have been using these products all week and many of them are quickly becoming some of my favorite products. I wanted to share with you some of my favorite Lush products, new and old, that you should consider incorporating into your beauty routine, because who doesn’t love finding new must-have products?! 

Click on the photos to shop the product!

Cup O’ Coffee

screen-shot-2016-10-26-at-7-38-42-pm

This product is my boo. I am Obsessed with this stuff! It is a stimulating mask that truly does it all. The fresh coffee grounds not only creates an irresistible scent but it also exfoliates to get rid of any dead skin, which helps to unclog your pores as well. The caffeine awakens the skin and reveals a naturally beautiful glow. I seriously use this mask 3-4 times a week, I have even gotten a few others hooked on it, so basically you need this in your life. 

Mask of Magnaminty 

screen-shot-2016-10-26-at-7-46-04-pm

Since I began using this mask my pores have never felt so clear. No but seriously! I have large pores (*sigh*) and naturally they get clogged, especially on my nose. I cannot stand the appearance of black heads so I have always been on the hunt to find a product that will successfully eliminate the appearance of them and clear out my big ol’ pores. Well this here product is the one! It is a deep cleaning mask that reaches deep into the pores and clears any unwanted debris and buildup. Mask of Magnaminty smells like fresh peppermint and it tingles when it is working, so it is basically incredible. 

Sleepy

screen-shot-2016-10-26-at-7-51-59-pm

Everything about this lotion is perfect. The smell is a delicate lavender scent, but it is not too fragrant making it overwhelming. I was originally attracted to this product because of the scent, but then I was informed that it is a relaxing lotion so I was sold. I use it all day long because I cannot get enough of the smell and how velvety-smooth the almond oils and coco butter make my skin feel. The comforting scent is also suppose to help you sleep a little better, I am sure it is a huge coincidence but I have actually been sleeping slightly better this week sin E I began using! 😉

Mr. Sandman

screen-shot-2016-10-26-at-8-05-30-pm

I have been obsessing with Mr. Sandman as of late. This product is quickly becoming my fav. I hate when you apply hand lotion and you are left with that sticky residue feeling, Mr. Sandman nips that problem in the butt. All you have to do is dust the powder over your hands (or any area) after you have applied lotion, the powder will absorb that residue feeling, leaving your hands feeling like velvet. The powder is full of chamomile and lavender, which as you can imagine creates an exceptional smell AND the powder has a slight shimmer to it, so hello highlight! 😉 I have found that Mr. Sandman and Sleepy compliment each other extremely well, I have only been pairing these two together, but I do not doubt that Mr. Sandman will compliment any scented lotion. 

Damaged

screen-shot-2016-10-26-at-7-59-12-pm

OMG- I kid you not, I have never loved a product as much as I love Damaged. I have very dry hair due to coloring it and trying to maintain my blond and I am always trying new hair products to make my hair feel soft and healthy. Well, this hot oil treatment does just that. Extra virgin olive oil, almond oil and organic avocado oil nourish dry and damaged hair, leaving it healthy, vibrant, and smooth. I especially recommend this product to anyone who dyes their hair and or has really dry hair during the winter months. You. Will. Love. It!

fullsizerender

Product Photos: Lushusa.com

Share: