Loft Sale

Alright Loft shoppers! There is a HUGE 40% off EVERYTHING sale going on now through July 4th!!!
I love Ann Taylor Loft by try to avoid going unless there is a sale! In the same boat? Now is the time! Here are a few items I'll be looking for that are work appropriate!
1. zebra slub tank - $29.00 
2. lace trim pullover - $39.99
**Remember, it should be 40% off these prices!**

I just happened to go the other day when they had a 40% off of all sale items and purchased a dress which I can't find online, and this skirt for $20.99! What a deal!

Happy shopping!!!


Etsy Jewelry

I've referenced Etsy a couple times lately (here and here) and wanted to reiterate how wonderful it is!! You can buy so many different things, but I especially love it for unique and original jewelry! There is also something so rewarding about supporting real artists! I have a few favorite designers and many yet to be discovered, I'm sure! Here is a giant collection of jewelry from Etsy that I'm loving right now!
9. Linkel Designs soaring brass bird - $32.50 -- this is on my wish list! 


Greek Festival

This Saturday I went to the local Greek Festival with a friend and the family (parents, in laws and bro and sis in law)! It was so much fun! I've always wanted to go and just never did! It was pretty crowded but that added to the fun - at least when we were outside! Crowds indoors make me want to run and hide! Excellent people watching as well. There were lots of food choices, but I just had a kabob and some greek pizza! and beer. and a honey donut ball! :) This is what I wore.

The details - pants: H&M at least 5 years ago, tank: Target a few years ago, earrings: Limited a few years ago, bangles: Limited, necklace (hard to see): Etsy

This was the first time I put these pieces together, and I rather enjoyed it! Felt all summery and fun! I've also seen a lot of people tuck shirts in which is something so simple, but made this outfit work for me! It didn't make me feel like I was a little kid going out to a nice dinner with the family either! Success! (Do you know what I mean? I feel like there was a period of my life where my brother and I were always supposed to tuck our shirts in! Anybody?)

My friend and I left the festival and went out to an Irish pub! Multi-cultural weekend - haha! She convinced me to do karaoke again (second time ever! first time was with her as well!) and it was hilarious! I can still rock out to Ace of Base The Sign and Spice Girls Wanna Be! Good times.

Alright, enjoy what's left of your weekend!


Comfort Shoes for Work

In this post I referenced Birkenstock shoes and promised a follow up post! A couple of years ago I learned the value of a good shoe. Is it easy to go to Target or Pay Less and grab a couple of on trend shoes for $20? Sure. Will they last for years and provide all day comfort at work? Only if you are lucky!

I guess I see the importance of paying more for a shoe knowing it will stay together longer, provide comfort and support! I'm always on the hunt for a comfort shoe that is not insanely ugly, perhaps even.. cute? Unfortunately you often have to make a slight concession on the style front, but I promise it's worth it!

Before you completely judge me for sharing these shoes on a "fashion blog", bear with me. These are real shoes - for real people that are on their feet all day! Would I love to be able to wear the cutest shoes to work? Maybe? But my day can feel long enough, I don't need to be bothered by sore feet.

Ok no more preamble! I have gathered a collection of shoes made by Privo by Clarks, Merrell, Birkenstock and Mephisto! I have personal experience with these brands and know they have great shoes, so I'm hopeful that my picks will not disappoint!

I'm lucky to have a fairly casual dress code at work, and these sporty options would be absolutely fine and easily cross over to the weekend!
6. Privo Polar Lake - $60 on sale!

These options are less sporty and more subtle.
1. Privo Polar Brook - $60 on sale!
3. Merrell Allure - $110
4. Merrell Brio - $85

Last but not least - two sandals I actually have and can attest to their comfort!
1. Helen Mephisto - $135
2. Birkenstock Gizeh - $79.95 - I wear these alllll the time! The patent really helps to dress things up, or at least make them passable for work!

What do you think gals? Do you stick to trendy shoes for work or go for comfort?


Curly Girly

Today was an interesting work day - 3 home visits, and the first client had some paranoid thoughts about someone "being in his phone", potentially his ex-wife. Wasn't really sure what to do with that, bless his heart. Apart from that he said he was very satisfied with his medical transportation services, so I guess overall all is well! :)

I got this tank top last year on sale at The Limited before my wedding, and probably haven't worn it since! You can't tell from the pictures but it has small pearls on the top. Glad a simple cardigan made it work appropriate! I really like it! 

Close up of the bracelet from this post! Nice, right?

Hope everything is fabulous in your world! 


Mimi's the Look for Less

Hello there!! Thanks to this post from The Look 4 Less, I learned about Mimi's the Look for Less online jewelry store. And by now we all now I love a good look for less find!!

For the last 6 months, perhaps, this beauty has been on the top of my lust list. Due to the crazy expensive price tag it quickly became a "maybe when I'm 40 I'll have enough money and can rationalize spending this kind of money" item. Time will tell.

In the meantime (although smaller in diameter than the 7mm one above), I have my very own look-alike, thanks to Mimi's!
The best part? The price. For real. 12 dolla! Not even kidding! Buy it here.

By the way, the owner, Evan, is the sweetest- she and her mom started this company when the economy took a turn, and now you too can have fancy jewelry for less! Way to go Evan! Please check out their website (also love these earrings, this bracelet, this bracelet, and these earrings!)

Here's the David Yurman version:
Unbefreakinlievable! Right?

I am so excited to layer it with my other bracelets! Check back for an outfit post soon, along with a new necklace from Mimi's!


Seeing double?

The other day I went to Old Navy to try on this and this (wasn't impressed with either and left without buying anything!). While in the store, I caught a glimpse of their sandals, and I was struck by the look for less quality! Definitely some differences, and comfort is unknown, but I'm still impressed by their similarities!

Check it out!

1. Sam Edelman 'Gigi' Sandal - $59.95

Do you think Look for Less finds are as fun as I do???


I'm so hard core.

Last night I had the craziest dream and had to share! Y'all I'm such a hard core social worker, I even have social work dreams!  In my dream I was saving a girl from being kidnapped! A lady drove up to this little girl, demanding to know her social security number (???) and was planning on stealing her identity! (I know this of course, because in my dream I turn into Tina, social worker, mind reader!) Never fear, Tina to the rescue! I demanded to know WHY she needed this information, and picked the girl up and SAVED her from potential awfulness! ...That is all I remember. The end.

Guess my subconscious wanted me to "take kids away" after all!
 Took a few pics before meeting the mother-in-law for happy hour!

Hope you have a lovely weekend planned!

Lunch Rewards

While most stereotypical social worker things are amusing and absolutely crazy, there may be a few things that ring true with me. No, I don't "take kids away", but I do love my Birkenstocks (more on this in another post!)... and there have been times when I don't get to eat lunch until 3:00, or I eat lunch in the car on the way to a home visit, or scarf some food down while making a report to APS - yeah that was me 2 weeks ago! We all have had those days!

If you find that you do have time to spare a few minutes for a bite to eat (your body will thank you!), take a look at Lean Cuisine's Rewards Program. I'm a sucker for frozen meals for lunch. It means I can have that much more time in the morning because I don't have to worry about fixing lunch - and I'm almost always rushing around like a crazy person in the morning- so this helps. Lean Cuisine has a rewards program going on until 12/31/11. Each box has a code on the inside, worth 20 points. Log the codes online and earn free things!! Easy? Easy.

Here are just two lovely options in the Spring Catalog:
1500 points
350 points 
Pretty cool, eh?


Feather Extensions

I have a new obsession!  Last week on "Claire-Only Days" I decided to try feather extensions.
A local salon luckily had them because they are super in-demand here.  Mine are visable, but under my hair so I can hide them in certain work situations.  I also got neutral colors.  The woman who put them in said they would, at least, stay through the entire summer.  You can wash, curl, blow dry, straighten these feathers and they will still look great! She used a small bead (right) to hold the feather in my hair.  It has silicon on the inside to hold it in.  She used needle-nosed pliers to close the bead to my hair and feathers. The picture to the left shows how the process is done.  I may need an adjustment to move the feathers up in a few months.  The worst part about the feathers is trying to brush your hair and getting is pulled in the bead.  I always have to remember to be more careful when I brush.   I got mine for $10 a piece including her putting them in.  I say its a deal these days!  I think I might get more, they are funky, fun and make me feel sassy :)  I like this fun look of the model on the right!  Here are a picture of my feathers:
Can you see them??!!


Makeup time!

I can be pretty snobby when it comes to my beauty products, as my husband will attest. Granted we're just babies in the marriage department (a little over a year!) but he has told me more than once if he added up all the money I spent on beauty products in a year he could buy something pretty cool with that money (whatever babe!). Well folks, not that I'm officially turning over a new leaf, but I have some good drug store beauty products to share with you!! And when they're good, and less expensive.. why not?

This past winter I received what I feel is my holy grail of eye shadow: Urban Decay's Naked palette.
Its price tag is around $48 for 12 eye shadows. Insane, right? Well it's wonderful, and Santa brought it to me, so no feelings of guilt here! :) Here's the problem, I'm especially in love with one of the colors "sin" (the second from the left) and to buy it individually it's $17!
Determined to find a look for less I went to the drug store and picked up an eye shadow that does a pretty good job in matching color - Loreal 101 Satin Tutu. While unfortunately I notice a slight difference in its staying power (turns out sometimes you do get what you pay for) and concentration (I  have to apply multiple coats for the same effect) the color is surprisingly similar and at a much more affordable price point! Try this color on the lid paired with a lighter color on the brow bone, or all over for an easy, effortless summer shimmer!

My second find is a lip balm/ gloss. I can't remember where I first heard of Covergirl's NatureLuxe gloss balm (perhaps a magazine?) but it's yummy! It's nice and light, but has enough pigment to matter. I'm really bad about reapplying lipstick, so I need something that will fade subtly over the day and not leave weird stains. The color I have is 230 coral, which is a nice way to jazz up my lip color! An added bonus, this balm has SPF 15 and is incredibly moisturizing!
Last but not least - a nail polish. I learned of this color over at Kendi Everyday in this post (if you're not familiar with Kendi's blog - go check it out right now! So jealous of fashion bloggers with photographer husbands!). The color is Revlon's Top Speed 405 Peachy. I think it's a great light peach color that is hard to resist! Right now I love a soft color on fingernails and a more bold color on toenails! This does just that. I'm surprisingly impressed with how speedy it dried as well! Good job Revlon!
Have you discovered any beauty products you have to share? Let us know!


Mani, Pedi and Me

I had a couple GLORIOUS days off last week and deemed these days "Claire-Only Days."  I decided that I wanted to relax and pamper myself.  I finally used my mani and pedi groupon, which I had been looking forward to! I was relaxed to the max...ahhhh!  I walked in and was asked if I wanted to upgrade for $5 to a Shellac manicure.  Immediately, I thought of Tina's post about her good experience with her manicure.  I'm only 5 days into my manicure and am loving it so far.  It is possible that Tina and I may have gotten the same color, I guess that's why we are friends with good taste :) 

I feel so revived after my days off.  I realized how much I do for others and sometimes forget myself.  I feel selfish when I focus on my needs.  After going to work this year with a fever and an extreme allergic reaction (puffy face and all) and attempting to work (but being sent home) I've really been thinking about my actions.  It's ok to be "selfish" sometimes.  As a social worker, how can you help others when you can't help yourself?  If I don't take care of myself, I will probably burn out in the next few years.  I love my job and do not want that to happen.  We have our yearly reviews coming up and I will be using this dilemma as something I need to work on next year.  Shouldn't be too hard, right?  I have sick days, I should use them when I'm sick...this is logical thinking, I think I can do it!  We all have our things we are working on to be better people and better social workers, what are you working on?

In other news:

Wyatt Update:
15 weeks
15 lbs
The sweetest puppy that I miss terribly during work, but when I get home his nub is wagging and booty is shakin'!  It makes everything that happened in the day OK!


Black Tank Maxi Dress: Look for Less

I get very excited (and angered at the same time!) when I see a very expensive item in one store and a nearly identical item for much, much less somewhere else. I wonder how someone can charge an extra $59.90 for just about the same thing!

My latest look for less find:

I went to Target to try to find this dress, but did not have any luck! Will be checking another Target next week!

Just created a new page for the blog: Things Our Clients Say - give us some time and check back for humorous quotes and client stories (anonymity kept, of course!).

P.S. Take a look at this blog for other look for less finds!


Personalized Necklaces

I am absolutely in love with this trend, and hope it's here to stay - at least longer than those best friend heart necklaces from middle school! There are so many varieties to choose from- whether you want to do initials for you and your hubby, just you, add a birth stone dangle for each kid.. there are many, many options and styles! In fact, it was hard to select just 8! (And I needed to limit myself, because I'm hungry and it's dinner time! Ya hear?) If you want to see more options on Etsy, a wonderful website where artists can sell their products, go: here.
2. Create your own @ Stella & Dot
3. Q Handmade - $80.00
6. Little J Necklace - $86.00
8. Create your own @ Stella & Dot

Which one speaks to you? Does this trend seem too "childish"? Share your thoughts in the comments!