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Wednesday, August 5, 2020

My Nordstrom Sale Picks, COVID Edition

Before I even get into sharing what is on my wishlist and why, I want to simply state I have a love-hate relationship with the Nordstrom sale. 


Every year, every blogger I know shares their MUST HAVE items. And 99% of the time it's all the same things so they sell out even before the sale opens to regular shoppers. See, Nordstrom has levels of account holders, based on how much you spend, and they open up the sale in waves. They also have an amazing return policy so oftentimes pieces that everyone wants are sold out even before the sale opens because people buy multiple sizes of items to try on at home and then return at a later time, like post-sale. Which sucks. Sorry not sorry. Normal people can't shop it until August 19th, while card holders at different levels can access starting August 4th (if you spend $15,000 a year!!!) I'm a normal person, just like you. And this sale is NOT worth opening a Nordstrom card for, so DON'T DO IT! 

With that being said, I keep a running list in my notes app on my phone throughout the year of pieces I want to snag during this sale. Why? Because Nordstrom only has sales a few times a year and when they do, it's a great chance to snag more expensive items for a better price. Like expensive jeans, higher end basics, shoes, and housewares.  

This is a COVID edition, so you won't see party clothes, a must-have motto jacket, slacks, or even blouses. I think we are all in the comfy-cozy mindset now and our wardrobe shows that. What you will see in my wish list is leggings, joggers, basic tops to go with those leggings and joggers, my favorite brand of jeans, sneakers, a fun pair of flats, comfy cardigans, and a few cozy pieces I try to snag every year. Sometimes I get them, other years I don't. Fingers crossed this year is a successful shopping year. 

Without further adieu, here we go!



There are two this year on sale that I own and love. So much so I want another color of each. First is the circle cardigan, pictured above. I'm hoping to snag the blue-grey color this year. It's down to $68 from $118 and these NEVER go on sale. Sometimes you can find one for $89-98 at Rack but that's only if you have REALLY good luck. It feels like wearing pajamas and while yes, they are an investment, they stand the test of time. Without question. Worth. Every. Penny. (plus size linked here

The long cardigan I own in the taupe color and every time I share an outfit pic of it, I get bombarded with questions about where it's from. So, now's your chance to snag one. Down to $65 down from $114. Dusty mauve is on my list this year. (plus size linked here




I have this sneaker in black and I know many who love the Walmart knockoff of it but there's something about leopard that speaks to me. Down to $49 from $85 it's a sweet deal for a VERY good sneaker. 

Blankets


The be all and end all of blankets. $119 down from $180. Yes, I know, it's expensive for a blanket. Especially a throw blanket, not even a comforter. BUT, if you've ever owned a single item from barefoot Dreams, you'll understand the worthwhile investment. This one is reversible leopard (I want the blush one) but there's also this Cozy Chic solid one too. $88 down from $147 the solid colors are classic and there are plenty of options. I want the ivory/cream one. Seriously though, totally worth the investment as they'll last a lifetime. Cozy, comfy pajamas in a blanket. Does it get much better? Nope. 


I buy one of these blankets every year for myself and get 2 to give as holiday gifts. Their "bliss plush throw" washes well, holds up over time, and comes in a ton of colors that coordinate with any decor. I have ivory, white, grey, blue grey, and I think a few more. No judgement, please. They're $25 in the sale, regularly $40. So when I buy 3 it's like buying 2 and getting one for free! 

Pants


Spanx Faux Leather Leggings

Now, this style isn't for everyone and I thought it wasn't for me. But, I was wrong. And these babies are magic. Definitely go up a size. Please listen to me when I say this because you'll be so sad if you don't. I actually am linking the petite ones above because almost everyone needs the petite length because the regular leggings run REALLY long. Like giraffe long. They suck you in like you've never been sucked in and don't make you feel or look like a sausage. Down to $64 from $98 the only time they're on sale is when Spanx does a flash sale, and those usually sell out immediately too. I own them in black and navy. I actually love wearing them with an oversized white button down and fun flats or mules. It's an easy outfit to look very well put together while still be wearing leggings. You're welcome. (plus size linked here

Zella Leggings and Zella Joggers


If you've ever followed me before, you know my love for Zella leggings runs deep. Almost as deep as Spanx. LOL. These leggings are great every day leggings, go great with a sweatshirt or tunic and stay up all day. NO tugging required. Down to $38 from $59, I am snagging another pair, this time likely a color instead of my go to black, since I have 2 pair of them in black already. (plus size linked here

I recently just got my first pair of Zella joggers and they're half jogger half legging and all goodness.  Also down to $38 from $59, they're called Live-In Joggers for a reason. You can (and will want to) live in them. (plus size linked here

Earrings
I have these earrings in rose gold and will admit, I bought them full price. But I had a gift card so it wasn't totally full price. Every year I go on to get them in platinum and miss out so hopefully, fingers crossed, I can get them this year. They are a good sized stud for $49 down from $98, they pass for real even to a jeweler's plain eye. Total weight just under 3 karats. They also carry a smaller version here down to $24 from $48. The smaller ones are less than a karat. 


Pajamas

Moonlight pajama set. I own it in black and plan on getting it in pink stripe too. Down to $39 from $65 my favorite part of them is they're light enough to wear in summer but since they're long sleeve and long pant I can wear them in winter too. 

Denim


Wit & Wisdom Ab-Solution jeans are the be all and end all of denim in my world. The interior lining of the waistband is thick lycra and provides a band of suck-in-genius. There's a few pair on sale and here's my picks and how they fit. Also important to note, they ALL come in petite sizes. A HUGE selling point for me, and for anyone else who's either short or has short legs. 

Skinny Jeans. Down to $44 from $68. Go down one size as they stretch a bit. I love the finish on these and how they stay up with the suction forceshield they have. Not sure how else to describe them. My go to skinny jeans. (plus size linked here

Crop Jeans. For me, they aren't cropped. But I'm crazy short. For the average person, they're cropped. But not capri cropped, just a bit to show your ankle. Down to $44 from $68, they fit like the skinny jeans fit. My second go to pair of jeans. 

Ankle Straight Leg Jeans. Also down to $44 from $68, these are regular straight leg jeans with a little Lycra in them. Ankle cut so there's no flare. Slightly faded too. (plus size linked here)

Plus Size Boot Cut jeans down to $44 from $88! 

Tops

1State Waffle Knit Top. I own this in grey and get complimented on it every time I wear it. I'm trying to get it in ivory this time. Such a pretty feature on the back. Down to $38 from $59 it's worth every penny. It works well with leggings of jeans or even wide leg pants with heels. Love it. 

Halogen Tie Waist Top. I own this in navy and want the red, perfect for holiday parties (if we have them...) This is the only top I'm sharing that isn't really comfy-cozy but is such a great piece I had to share. Down to $29 from $59 you might as well also get the black. I might. 

Gibson Twist Front Pullover. I own this in black and am getting the muted oatmeal leopard print. You will too when you see it. Down to $28 from $49 it's long sleeve, has a twist-front detail on the hem, slightly longer in the back, and feels like wearing pajamas. Goes with leggings or jeans or any pants you own. Even joggers. Seriously. My must buy top of the entire sale. AND it goes up to plus sizes too. Holla!! 

Leith Long Cardigan. I own this in black and want the light grey. Easy to wear. Dress up or down. Comfy cozy and a winner across the board. Down to $38 from $68 it comes in almost a dozen colors. A great find for under $40!


Other Goodies


I don't think these will last, but I'm hoping we can all be twins. Down to $39 from $92 they're a leopard pointy flat that feel like slippers. I literally wore straight through my last pair I bough three years ago, mainly because I felt they were invincible in the rain and snow. FYI, they are not. 


No other words needed. You're welcome. Down to $19 from $30, you get TWO PAIRS! 


Hear me out here. Do you use a different laundry detergent for your unmentionables?! Well. you should! This is my go to and I love snagging 2 bottles to last me all year! $9 down from $18 so it's buy one get one free. Honestly though, I use it for my underwear and bras on delicate cycle and it makes them just a little more kept-up than regular detergent. 


Nordstrom is my happy place. And I miss it. I miss wandering through the store, getting outfit inspiration from the mannequins, spending far too much time in the dressing room trying on things I surely cannot afford, and, of course, having lunch in their cafe. 



Now, in case you didn't know, I get a small (and I mean small, but better than nothing) commission when you shop via the links here. I appreciate it but understand if you shop elsewhere too! 

I hope my wish list helps you and your adventures with the Nordstrom sale this year. Happy shopping and best wishes snagging what you want before it sells out! xoxo

What's Cooking Wednesday: Tzatziki

I cannot believe I finally put together a recipe that I love but also is easy and simple to make! 

Ingredients: 
4 pickling cucumbers (I have them growing in my yard, otherwise use 1 English cucumber) 
1 1/2 cups sour cream (you could also do Greek yogurt but I only had sour cream)
1 tablespoon garlic powder
Juice of one lemon
1 tablespoon dill
2 tablespoons GOOD olive oil
dash of salt and pepper to taste


Using a grater, grate the cucumber on the smallest or second smallest side onto a paper towel. When done grating, squeeze as much water out as you can. 
Put the cucumber in the bowl along with all of the other ingredients. 
Mix gently but completely. 
Cover and place in the fridge for at least an hour, preferably 4 so the flavors all marinate together.

I like to have it in my fridge to put on top of Greek taco bowls or burrito bowls or even just dip chips in it. 


Tuesday, August 4, 2020

CT Hidden Gem: Rail Bike Adventure

We recently were able to have our first date in months (thanks COVID) and enjoyed an afternoon at the Essen Steam Train doing their Rail Bike Adventure. I cannot recommend this experience enough. And we went on the hottest day of the year, so the fact I'm still recommending it says a lot! 

First off, when you arrive, the go over their safety protocols. And with COVID happening, honestly, there were a lot. But we were VERY impressed with how safe it all was. 

Say hello to our ride. 


When you board your bike, you get instructions and a "how to" ride, as well as the ever-so-important how to stop lesson. You are spaced at ample length from other bikes so safety is their top priority. As well as fun! 


The railroad line you follow goes in the trees but follows parallel to the Connecticut River. 


You get to have some pretty amazing views while you bike. 


While you bike, your bikes are a good distance apart from others. And you can go at your own speed too. You don't have to 'keep up' if you want to be more leisurely than the bike in front of you. 



At the stopping point, you get off and they turn you around to ride back. It's about a 35 minute ride there then 35 minute ride back. You get a sweet view of Gilette Castle while you're stopped too!


The view are almost picturesque while pedaling. 


Probably the nicest thing they do. They stop at this gorgeous view and snap a picture for you, with your own phone, to commemorate your ride. Seriously. So sweet. And free of charge! 


There's a car on the tracks leading the way as well as bringing up the rear. Another safety feature! You're not out on your own which is nice. 


If you can't tell, we had a blast! 


The Essex Steam Train does so many amazing adventures, not just the rail bike. Between Polar Express, Thomas the Train, their ferry boat ride, and different train excursions they're a great little local business we enjoy supporting all year round! 

Saturday, August 1, 2020

CT Hidden Gem: Scotts' Farms

I am sucker for a local business. Especially a local business that speaks to me. 

Scotts' Farms in Essex (and Deep River) is just that. They are a small, local, family-run farm overflowing with amazing produce. BUT the absolute most BEST part of their farms is that they have a pick your own flower garden. 

I KNOW. Your mind is blown too. 

AND.... wait for it.... it doesn't break the bank. It is $9.95 a pound for whatever you pick and I have yet to spend over $15 any time I go. And I pick A LOT OF FLOWERS. 

Plus, my son just loves going there. 


They have probably 12-15 rows of flowers from dahlias to zinnias to snapdragons to daisies and so many more I have yet to identify. 





They provide you with clippers and a basket if you don't bring your own. But what I love is I can bring my own containers to make my own arrangements while I'm there and they weigh them before I start picking. So smart. 



It is a little over an hour drive each way and we visit there several times a summer, just to give you an idea of how worth it it is for us! 



Just a few of the arrangements I made on this visit. I made 4 total! And only spent $11. 



We also love to meet our friends while we're there. The boys love helping us pick flowers too! Train them young that a woman loves fresh flowers ;-) 


Scotts' Farms is in Essex at 81 Plains Road, right near the Essex Train Station. Their fruit picking is at their Deep River location. 

I seriously cannot recommend them enough. Even on a cloudy, overcast day, we had a blast!