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Posts tagged “strass

Twist of Fate

As I sit in my bedroom and gaze out my sliding glass door at this GORGEOUS sunset, it reminds me how fragile life really is, and how a moment in time can change the course of your life. Be it floods from weather (Here’s looking at you Texas, my adopted second home that I miss daily), a medical emergency at your daughter’s school, or death in the family, life is precious, fleeting, and you have to cherish every day, really every moment.

Earlier this year my daughter had a medical emergency at her school, which resulted in the administration choosing to NOT call 911 for nearly 2 hours. Through a lucky twist of fate, she is okay. Forever scarred by the experience, but also changed in ways I couldn’t have dreamed of as a mother. She’s become more focused, thoughtful and is growing into a young lady I am proud to call my mini-me (although she’s officially as tall as me!). But that tragic decision on the part of a single person changed the entire course of our lives! Of course other unspeakable things happened at this same school in the following months to my two younger sons that were awful in their own ways, but my daughters accident started it, and we are now a homeschooling/unschooling/independent study family. While I was initially terrified, technology and an INCREDIBLE support system has made the transition relatively painless. It also opens up the delights of Southern California for many hands on experiences that would not be available otherwise. 

That said, my focus may change a bit. I still shop, wear cute dresses (hey, now I can dress like a teacher!), and go to Disneyland far too much. But it’s become teachable moments in all these activities I enjoy. Disneyland turned into a keynote presentation on the origin of a ride, the difference between cars, and the mechanics of said ride. A shopping trip turns into a budgeting lesson (one I probably need to take myself!). And most of all, the kids picked up flying model airplanes this summer, which has opened up a world of avionics and the ultimate adventure of learning how to fly gliders and read wind patterns. Oh and today? They learned to drive a John Deere ride on mower, they leveled part of the field and thought it was just a big game! 

All this due to a twist of fate in February. Changed the course of their lives and has put them on a path to careers they dreamed about but didn’t quite know how to reach. 

I know I don’t often post about family and personal stuff, but the last year has brought many changes into our lives and I haven’t been blogging as much because of it. I still post regularly on Instagram, but I also forget about Facebook. Being a work-widow adds to my schedule, but it’s a job I am happy to fill, as I see the long term path we are on. 

And now for some fun:

No matter how hard things seem, hold fast and stay on that path. Those twists of fate, if you follow them and stick to it, even when it’s difficult, the changes will turn into blessings beyond your dreams.

Until next time,

Jules


Meet Arlowe

A week ago the weather was glorious and my mother decided to drag everyone outside to do a little yard work. (Sorely needed, our yard is OUT of control!!) While clearing my rosebeds the orange tabby cat who’s been hanging around our yard decided to “adopt” us. Like, he IS NEVER EVER LEAVING. 

Kids came up with the name “Arlowe”. My daughter has attached herself to him, and while his preference seems to be me (why?!), he will settle for her:

Seriously, these two lay on the floor with the front door open all the time (if you shut the door Arlowe freaks out). So, we now have a cat. I took him today to make sure he wasn’t microchipped (he wasn’t!), and to get him shots. To make him even more of a perfect cat? He loved riding in the car. WHAT?! 

On the way home he got the carrier open and was sitting in my center console watching the world fly by him. When I asked him to get back in his carrier, he looked at me, gave me a single meow, and crawled back in the carrier. Like seriously, has anyone ever had a cat like this? I am glad he prefers the outside, as my allergies are already bonkers wig him around, I don’t think I could deal with him inside 24/7. He’s the biggest love bug I’ve ever encountered, especially for a previously “feral” cat! I think someone dumped him….he’s so careful with his claws and everything, and he loves the kids. Sigh. And don’t worry, just because he’s an outside cat, I still picked up a quality cat food system! 

Some recent outfits:

  1. Cardigan/Dress/Belt: Kate Spade
  2. Shoes: Jimmy Choo
  3. Handbag: Kate Spade Rachelle

  1. Dress: Kate Spade
  2. Belt: handmade

  1. Top: Banana Republic
  2. Skirt: Kate Spade Madison Avenue
  3. Shoes: Kate Spade 
  4. Necklace: Kate Spade (in outlets currently)

  1. Dress: Kate Spade (in outlets now!)
  2. Shoes: Christian Louboutin (stressed by me in Alexandrite AB)
  3. Bag: Kate Spade (last year, not redone for outlets)

  1. Dress: Kate Spade Madison Avenue
  2. Belt: Target
  3. Shoes: Christian Louboutin 
  4. Handbag: Kate Spade

Everything: Kate Spade (the dress has made it to the outlet sale racks!)

We hit Disneyland again this last week….my youngest had a field trip, this was a sweet moment I captured of him pushing his sister around:

Then working on a puzzle with my dad (they always have a puzzle in the shop on Main Street!)

It was a fun day, even with the heat and crowds. We are very fortunate to have the ability to do all the things we do. Our recent situation with my daughter has reminded all of us that we only have one life, and we really should live it to the fullest we can! I am grateful for everything!

Until next time,

Jules


Monday, oh Monday

Oh Monday, we meet again.  Sometimes you kick my butt.  Today was one of those days, albeit self inflicted!  Something about using the excuse of driving teenagers to an event in Irvine to justify a quick trip to Disneyland yesterday, which was late enough in the afternoon to hit traffic (people coming home from Vegas), and result in returning home late (after my Sunday 9pm bedtime).  But it was fun and worth it, especially for Rocky to experience more Disney fun! (My friends were still there, and we spend the 4 hours I had in California Adventure, with some amazing “anytime” fast passes, SCORE!)

  1. Dress: Kate Spade Chambray (it was a little heavy for the weather though, it was warmer than forecasted)
  2. Shoes: Christian Louboutin, strassed in Alexandrite AB
  3. Handbag: Kate Spade
  4. Troll: Rocky

And today, work beckoned….sadly! 

  1. Dress: Kate Spade (older style, yes I own it in white AND green too….hey it has pockets!)
  2. Belt: Kate Spade
  3. Handbag: Kate Spade (new September 2016 collection, online and in stores right now…and there is a splurge & save through the end of the month!)
  4. Shoes: Kate Spade (match the bag)

I really REALLY love these heels:

My husband doesn’t care much for the stacked/chunky heel (I get it!), but they are so comfortable that I will sacrifice style for the fact that I was on my feet today for 8+ hours.  Some days, you just need to be comfortable!

Until next time,

Jules


A Huge Recap

Life has been, well, busy, interesting, and busy! It’s May (almost the middle!), and every May there is a group of gals on Instagram that participate in “Dress a day in May” challenge. So, I embrace that one fully!!! So here’s my May dresses so far:

Today:

  1. Dress: Kate Spade
  2. Belt: Oscar de la Renta
  3. Shoes: Christian Louboutin
  4. Handbag: Kate Spade

Yesterday:

  1. Dress: Kate Spade
  2. Belt: JCrew
  3. Shoes: Thrifted 

Sunday:

  1. Blouse: Forever 21
  2. Skirt: Kate Spade Madison Avenue
  3. Shoes: Jimmy Choo (strassed by me in Siam Crystal)

Last week:

  1. Top: Banana Republic
  2. Skirt: Kate Spade
  3. Shoes: SJP

  1. Dress: Vintage
  2. Belt: Thrifted
  3. Necklace: vintage
  4. Shoes: Christian Louboutin

  1. Dress: Kate Spade
  2. Belt: Kate Spade
  3. Shoes: Christian Louboutin

  1. Dress: Kate Spade
  2. Shoes: Christian Louboutin

And yes another week at Dancing with the Stars! (This was a week ago, I didn’t go last night) Nyle was the nicest gentleman, his dancing amazes me every week! Now that our girl is off the show I am pulling for him!


  1. Dress: Kate Spade (currently at outlets!)
  2. Shoes: Christian Louboutin strassed by me
  3. Handbag: Kate Spade

I’ve also made a lot of cakes, and Macarons:

Sugar flowers! (Yes I made them all)

Until next time,

Jules


An Update of Sorts

Oh boy y’all, it’s been INSANE! Like “I want to crawl into a hole at the end of each day” insane. Lots of French Macarons, and lots of trips to LA for Dancing with the Stars, plus some amazing shopping trips, add in having 4 kids, and voila! By the end of the day I am just DONE. But here’s a few of my favorite outfits from the last few weeks (and maybe a fun backstage moment from Dancing with the Stars!):

   
   

  1. Dress: Prada, under $50 at Last Call (wait, WHAT?! I know right?! Our Last Call is INSANE right now! Price tag had $2065 on it!!)
  2. Belt: Ted Baker, $10 outlet find
  3. Shoes: Kate Spade (via The Real Real)

   
  

   
 

  1. Cardigan: Kate Spade (via The Real Real, it’s an older one I’ve been looking for for YEARS!)
  2. Skirt: Vintage (talk about an investment piece….this $6 skirt has gotten so much wear)
  3. Shoes: Christian Louboutin
  4. Handbag: Kate Spade (Small Rachelle, outlet style, and my favorite bag shape/style)

   
  

 

  1.  Cardigan: Banana Republic Outlet
  2. Dress: Kate Spade (currently at outlets for $89.99)
  3. Belt & Necklace: Thrifted
  4. Shoes: Kate Spade

   
  

    
   

  1. Dress: Adrianna Papell (Nordstrom rack, under $50)
  2. Shoes: Christian Louboutin (strassed by me)
  3. Necklace: Kate Spade
  4. And yes, Jodie Sweetin! She’s such a doll, I love her story of redemption and seeing how she is growing as a dancer. The judges were dumb on Monday night, her dance was AWESOME. My fan girl moments are done though, I’ll try to play it cool next week! LOL

 
  

   

  1. Cardigan: BR Outlet
  2. Dress: Kate Spade
  3. Belt: Thrifted
  4. Shoes: Jimmy Choo
  5. Necklace: Kate Spade

   
  

    
 

  1. Cardigan: Kate Spade (another The Real Real find!!! Eeks! I was excited for the new bumblebee one, but after finally hunting this one down, I’m not going to buy it, I really wanted this one!)
  2. Skirt: Kate Spade (another older piece)
  3. Shoes: Kate Spade

   
  

   

  1. Cardigan: Kate Spade (another older cardigan! I really LOVE the pieces from 4-6 years ago)
  2. Skirt: Kate Spade
  3. Shoes: SJP 

     
  

 

  1.  Dress: Kate Spade
  2. Belt: Target
  3. Necklace: Target
  4. Shoes & Handbag: Kate Spade

 
  

  1. Dress: Kate Spade (when in Vegas….right?!)
  2. Shoes: Christian Louboutin
  3. Handbag: Kate Spade

 
    
  

 

  1.  Cardigan: Kate Spade
  2. Blouse: Kate Spade
  3. Pants: Kate Spade
  4. Shoes: Christian Louboutin
  5. Handbag & Necklace: Kate Spade

Those are my favorite looks from the last couple of weeks. I still can’t get over the Prada dress find….I know it’s just a simple pink sundress, but I LOVE IT. It was really windy yesterday and it held up pretty well, I didn’t flash anyone!

On a Kate Spade note, new arrivals at the outlets:  (photos were sent to me…I went up to our local one last night but didn’t buy anything)

  

    
 And flamingo keychains are back! (So don’t get duped on eBay y’all!!!)

And I did French Macarons & Salted Chocolate Chip cookies for the Houston Flagship store….to celebrate the launch of their April collection:    

   
 
Did you attend Emily’s tea party? Sadly I was in Vegas for a business conference, but I was totally there in spirit! I also ordered a pile of stuff during friends and family weekend…which I shall have to debut at some point. 

Until next time,

Jules 


Sunday Florals

So if you subscribe via email, this will be the second one you receive. Nothing like hitting “post” in the middle of uploading photos! 

Anyway, this dress! I snagged it while skimming through Nordstrom Rack the other day and could NOT RESIST! It’s a size up from what I normally buy, but this particular designer, sometimes her smallest is a 2, so I didn’t even think, I GRABBED! I’ll probably have my tailor take it in, although it wasn’t that noticeable….sometimes it’s nice to have a dress that isn’t a perfect fit, you can eat in it! I added some sparkly accessories and was quite pleased with the outcome:

   
    
 

  1. Dress: Adrianna Papell
  2. Belt: Kate Spade (same belt as yesterday, just in navy)
  3. Shoes: Christian Louboutin, strassed by me
  4. Handbag: Kate Spade
  5. Necklace & Bracelet: Kate Spade

The fabric on this dress is lovely, it’s lined AND has pocket. I’ve always loved Adrianna Papell, although I’ve felt in the past the dresses had a definite “20’s” feel to them. I’ve bought a few recently though, and they just fit beautifully! For under $50, I simply couldn’t resist! The length is nice as well, and the biggest bonus it due to how the skirt is cut? It’s windproof! Very important after last weeks excitement!

Until next time,

Jules


Disneyland Day

Most women, ahem, my age (over 30 under 40) tend to enjoy a day at the spa. Being pampered. Me? I prefer a day at Disneyland with a handful of wonderful friends I have met over the last few years. We show up, we cruise the park, hop on a few rides, and EAT! Well, today was a Disney Day! Well, California Adventure to be exact (for me anyway, I didn’t park hop). The weather was spring like and gorgeous, so I wore this: 

   
    
 

  1. Cardigan: Kate Spade (outlet find 2+ years ago. Back when I would order from Woodbury Commons in NY)
  2. Dress: Kate Spade (this is an older style, 2012-ish?)
  3. Belt: Kate Spade (currently on sale!)
  4. Shoes: Christian Louboutin, strassed in Alexandrite AB
  5. Handbag: Kate Spade (outlet style)

I don’t normally take lots of photos on a Disney day, instead I mainly just enjoy being there. Today we decided to play some arcade games, and I snagged some great prizes (hint: EVERYONE wins at the go fish game!), I actually pulled 3 “medium” prize fish out of the tank today, which netted me 3 of these guys:

 

I also had many small creatures, to which we created some “Disney Magic” by passing them out to unsuspecting children on Paradise Pier. I brought some home for my kiddos as well….but for the Mickey’s? I gave one to my friend and so I have two left….unsure what will happen to these! But it sure was fun to “win” them!! Yes you have to pay to play, but it was fun and I feel worth every penny. Disney may be pricey, but I feel it’s worth every penny. No one does it like Disney, no one! 

I was out of there by 1:30, fighting traffic all the way home. But it was a nice escape from the stresses of the last week. Now it’s off to an early bedtime to finish the “spa” experience! 

Until next time,

Jules