Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Gotta Squeeze in One Last Little Post Before the End of June...

To make up for a really sad showing of posts this month, I am making up for it by publishing TWO WHOLE POSTS in one day. Admittedly this is a fairly easy post to create, basically, pick photos, upload them, write a paragraph to introduce and close the post, and write a sentence for each photo. I think a well-behaved monkey could do this post fairly successfully. :)

These photos below are only part of the trip to CA. I have more but really want to focus on each part of the trip. All are taken in Santa Barbara, CA. I so very much HEART Santa Barbara, what a lovely place. I was glad that as a family we could enjoy such a beautiful day and environment together. Okay, yes, Rex freaked out at the beach (that poor kid has as many anxieties as a neurotic old woman) but eventually even the waves couldn't stop him from seeing that we were indeed having a great day. CW, from start to finish, had a blast. That's my girl. LOL. Mr. Dina says that if Rex didn't look exactly like me he would be concerned that he wasn't my kid, what with his fear of the beach and Disneyland (yes, he is afraid of most of Disneyland--more on that in another post).

From the very end of the day, slightly sunkissed, and very sated, the dinagideon family poses for what could possibly be our Christmas card photo (it is in the running). We are next to the restaurant we ate at (which also had an INCREDIBLE view from their open-air deck of the Pacific Ocean).

I know kids shouldn't be allowed to plant their face in the sand as it is very icky, but well, we couldn't stop her in time. Doesn't CW look so happy, though? It's okay...this time. ;)

CW...even happier. Momma...still kind of grossed out.

CW walked happily, hand in hand, with me to the waves. The water was chilly, but she was more than happy to stride into the water for at least a minute or two.

Rex managed to stop freaking out, and at that point he sat happily looking at the ocean with us.

And there Rex stands, looking quite proud and satisfied. Good. He deserves a nice day every once in a while.

Here are CW and Momma at the restaurant with one of the best views anywhere. I really liked CW's face, which is why I uploaded this photo.

I hope you all have a great night. I know that these photos are mainly for my dear relatives and friends who love seeing pics of my kids, but if you are one of my beloved fashion friends, more info on my outfit can be found in this post and this polyvore.

P.S. For all of you who are born on Canada Day, I say a early "Happy Birthday." SWAK.

In a (Floral) Daze...

I am back, but barely! California was insanely awesome and getting to see my family and friends is so wonderful, but I definitely missed my routine. (Hence my inability to publish any posts!) For as much as I missed my routine, my kids missed it even more...Rex was TERRIBLE these past two days, and I 100% blame it on lack of sleep. You all want to know what he is doing right now? Yep. He is napping. Good for him, and great for us! :)

A few weeks ago, our family visited Nationals park to watch a baseball game. I needed something that would keep me cool, but also allow me to be somewhat covered as it was hot AND super-sunny. Above is the outfit I created to do just that.

And here it is on me. :)

Size small. This is the Floral Daze Cardigan that has a Liberty fabric front and a knitted arms and back. I quite like it, nice and lightweight, but still funky enough to suit my sensibilities. I know a lot of people disliked the weight of this cardi, but I need something MUCH lighter for the summers around here...heavy to me equals heat stroke. LOL. It is sold out, but maybe watch for popbacks. :)
Shorts: Size 8. These are the oxford shorts in the light purple color. I like the inseam length on these, short enough to scream "summer," but in no way indecent for my leg length. :P
Top: Size small. This is the perfect fit tank in the vintage orange color. I pulled out the shorts and the cardi and discovered that this tank was the PERFECT complement to the outfit. I love this tank, so soft and well-fitting, without being to stretch-y. Worth every penny spent.
Shoes: Size 10. These are some version or another of J. Crew's capri sandals. Maybe the posie sandal? They made it through the day, but by mile 4, a blister had formed. I guess that is reasonable enough for what the sandals are probably meant to do.

One last thing...I made it onto the Polyvore blog again. Woo-hoo!

They loved this set I made and quite fittingly said "whatever lola wants...lola gets..." Teehee. :) Thank you, Polyvore.

P.S. I am just giving up on replying back to the past three weeks comments. If you made a comment in that time and need me to reply, can you either e-mail me at dinagideon AT aim DOT com or comment on this post? I am so sorry to do that to you all, but I feel like I am all swimmy and I need a fresh start. ;)

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Incorporating Lola for J. Crew Into My Life...

You all may have noticed in my blog post on packing yesterday (which I have updated with my tips for making packing easier) that there was a Lola for J. Crew raffia fedora in the mix of items I packed for my trip to Southern California.

I have always been a "hat" girl, and as a teenager, my dad was constantly buying me hats...especially from J. Crew. It has been YEARS, though, since I have purchased a real hat from them as I had found that even their medium/large hats were a touch too tight for my ginormous noggin.

So imagine my surprise when shopping at Tyson's a few weeks ago with drewablank and I try on the Lola hat and discover that it not only fits, but looks really nice on my huge head. :) YAY! It was a bit too expensive at the time, so I held off until I could grab it and not feel guilty.

Well, based on how many times I have already worn it (umm, four times) in the last two weeks, I would dare say the purchase price will seem a lot more reasonable by the end of the summer...what is that called...price per wear equation? I want to wear it so many times that the price per wear goes into the pennies. LOL.

Above is the polyvore of the first way I attempted an outfit with the hat. In the end this outfit made me look a bit "hipster," but eh, well, I guess there are worse ways I could look. ;)

You see? A bit hipster. I feel like this outfit made me look like I was going to an art opening in some funky neighborhood and then to the farmer's market and finally to the local coffee shop (never Starbucks) for a soy latte. In reality, we went to Moe's and then back to our house for a stint on our play castle (read: jungle gym).

Lisbet Blouse, Anthropologie, Size 2. Ran very large, but I LOVE it and am so glad I could snag it for $30. Woo-hoo.
Shorts: Wool Shorts, J. Crew, Size 8. These are the ones from last fall that were meant to be worn with tights, and I did do that once, but I like the shorts in the summer, too.
Shoes: Cleo Platform Sandals, J. Crew, Size 10. Have worn tons already this summer. Price per wear should be low for these, too. :)
Hat: Lola for J. Crew Raffia Fedora, J. Crew, One Size. This may be too big if you have a smaller head, as it fits my cranium beautifully.

Mr. Dina HATED the hat at first, but halfway through our play castle stint, he smiled and said, "I actually kind of love that hat on you." Good on you, Lola.

My dad saw the hat for the first time yesterday and said, "ooh, I really like that hat for you and for your California trip--it is perfect."

If you are not a hat person, just ignore my love note, and move on to the outfit without the fedora (below).

And here is the outfit as I wore it inside the restaurant (although a wee bit of me wanted to keep it on--haha).

CW is in the photo! It's been a while, girlie. :)

Have a great day.

P.S. I AM SO BEHIND in commenting it is making me kind of ill. I will catch up, but if I have to ignore your comment (even though I assure you I read it), please forgive me. Anyone with kids, a trip, a family, a commitment will get this!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Mommy Style Monday #7--Packing Tips for the Stylish Mom...

Hi! Get this! I am on a an actual AIRPLANE writing this. That said, my kids are acting crazy (shocker) and I am on borrowed time. Okay, so with that, I will tell you what you will see this morning and what I will do tonight to finish this post.

You will see a polyvore of all the things I packed for this trip, and you will also see a picture of all the items I packed laid out. I have a very specific method to my madness. :)

Tonight I will discuss my tips for stylish moms and their packing needs...won't be my most long-winded post, but it will certainly have more info that I have in here now. LOL.

Above is the polyvore of all the things I packed.

Above is the picture of all the things I packed laid out and ready to go into the suitcase.

Wish me luck today. We are all a bit loose and you know little toddlers and planes, such delightful, happy memory-making times for all. ;)

Oh, and yes, I know it is Tuesday, but can we just squeak this one in this on time? :)


It is now Wednesday and I am finally able to finish this post.

As a SAHM, you would think that I would have the luxury of packing made easy, as I have ALL THE TIME IN THE WORLD. Well, turns out that just isn't true. I do work out of the home, even if it is sporadically, and that takes time, plus my family was in town these past two weeks, so almost all my time was spent with them and not my beloved suitcases--LOL.

Even in the best of situations, you know, it's winter, no one is visiting, no subbing jobs, packing can be a very tedious process. After many years of getting frustrated that it would be the DAY of the flight, car trip, train ride, etc., and I was still packing...I knew I HAD to streamline the process...and here is what I came up with to help me...

1. Start early, but not too early. I find that if I am going away for a week, I start one week early. If I am going away for two weeks, I start two weeks early, and so on. It may be that I just bring the suitcases upstairs but even that simple move gets me in the mindset that packing must get started.

2. Pick a theme. I love to theme my vacations...this time (for Southern California in summer), I themed it "Chloë Sevigny Goes Beach-Girl Chic." Adding the raffia hat and the linen scarf helps complete that look, as I can totally see Chloe wearing both of those pieces to the beach, wind whipping her scarf, yet not her hair (which is protected by Lola for J. Crew).

3. Definitely find a color trio. I love working with three colors. Clearly I went for the teal green/silver/white look. I always try to incorporate at least one neutral and one bright. Sometimes I throw in another color, whereas other times I throw in another neutral (which is what I did this time with silver).

4. Don't overpack. I do pack a lot of clothing for my trips, but honestly, I should NOT need more than 7 tops for a 7 day trip. Even if I REALLY want to add in that extra tank, etc., I restrain myself. I also knew that I would have only one dress-up occasion (church on Sunday), so I packed one dress-up outfit, the Silver Lining dress by Anthropologie.

5. Don't forget accessories. The sunshine of California necessitates sunglasses and the hat, the cooler temps at night (can dip into the low 60s--especially on the coast) necessitate the cardigans and the scarf, and because I don't want to be boring, I have also packed jewelry (the necklaces) to add a boost to each outfit.

6. Remember your climate. If I was headed to Virginia for a summer vacation, I WOULD NEVER pack a jacket or heavy cardigan. That would be silly. I would pack a raincoat, though. Did I bring an umbrella to CA? Nope. Not needed!

7. Remember Wal-Mart. It used to be that I would FLIP out over the little things, like "where is the toothpaste, and how many diapers should we bring, how about how heavy is this shampoo going to make this bag?" Finally, I just stopped one day when my hubby gently reminded me, "Remember Wal-Mart." He's right...if you leave anything behind or you don't want to bring something, you can always find what you need somewhere when you are travelling. It may not be EXACTLY what you are used to, but isn't part of travelling the fun of finding novelty? Since then, I have EMBRACED the novel, and do not stress over those small, unimportant things like bringing 50 diapers.

I hope this helped you all. If I think of anything, or if you all can think of anything to add, please comment, would love to hear what you have to say!!!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

NYC Fab, at Least My Version of Fab...

I have been promising you this post for what, three weeks, right? Crazy!

I call this post NYC fab because I felt FAB in these outfits. Now I understand that for many of you, these outfits may be less than fab, as some of you really do fab very very well, but for a mom who rarely has the chance to really bring it (wait for the mega-post I will be doing on summer sundresses--LOL--that has been my uniform so far since the heat and humidity decided to sit upon us here in Virginia), NYC over Memorial Day weekend was my opportunity to try some outfits that I normally wouldn't wear. One reason is because it does tend to be more conservative around these parts and I feel like I stick out a bit more if I wear these outfits when I am out with my NYC, I felt liberated, sort of like all the other people were doing more "high" fashion, so I could get away with shorter skirts, funkier necklaces, and crazy high heels, even if I was out with my kids. It was kind of nice, actually. Second reason is that being away from my "normal" life and clothing, I was forced to wear what I brought, regardless of comfort or how I was "feeling" in that particular moment.

So let us begin!

First outfit is my very favorite of the whole weekend and the first one I actually wore. I do have to admit to wearing this on the night that my dad (HAPPY FATHER'S DAY, dad!) took care of my kids and Mr. Dina and I were able to go to dinner and a show together. The kids were not part of the equation for this outfit, so I was more than happy to wear the Alecias as long as I could (haha, which wasn't all that long, see next photo for more on that).

Dress: Carly Dress, J. Crew, Size 8. You know I love this dress, and still do. I find for a very comfortable dress, it can be dressed up very easily, especially in this (in-store only) color of grey. Belt: Roughed Out-Belt, J. Crew Outlet, Size Small. Really punches up where the waist is on this dress.
Shoes: Alecia Suede Peep-Toes, Size 9.5. See, I have raved about these before, but oh, I didn't have to wear them to walk nearly 2 miles. Oops! I had to go to a discount shoe store near Union Square and buy a fancy pair of flip-flops halfway through the evening. ;)

And there they are, those fancy flip-flops by Kenneth Cole Reaction. (They are pretty comfy for being all sequined and special...)

Next day, the day I walked nearly 8 miles total (maybe more--who knows?), I wore this outfit. Yes, I did. And it was PERFECT. Only by the 8th mile were my feet anywhere close to suffering. Amazing!

Top: Caspian Blue and Black Floral Tee, J. Crew, Size Small. Love this but didn't realize it was a sheer (do you see the pattern of the skirt through it?). Also, the seam under the arm had a hole, so I had to do emergency surgery on the tee with a sewing kit. Grr. :P
Skirt: Croccodillo Pencil Skirt, J. Crew, Size 8. Bought this last year when I went to NYC and visited the Collection store. Still LOVE this skirt. One of my very favorites ever from J. Crew.
Shoes: Lalia Gladiator Sandals, Circa Joan and David, Size 9.5. I specifically bought these for the long walk I knew I would be taking in NYC. Purchased at Macy's for a song, and 100% worth every penny. Have already worn them multiple times this summer.

Baby CW is wearing her Liberty of London for Target sundress. That evening we passed the big HUGE billboard for Liberty of London for Target, so we got a photo of her in front of it! (You will see the fun, candid shots in another post.)

After walking 8 miles (ooh, yes, just like Eminem's awesome album), I decided to change. You would have too. :) Trust me.

I actually had bought this at the SOHO J. Crew store earlier in the day, and loved it. You have already had a sneak peek of this when I showed this photo off, but now I can discuss it!

Top: New Favorite Tank, J. Crew, Size X-Small. This must be an in-store only color, and it is really bright, but just what the outfit needed for a punch of color. Yum.
Skirt: Drapey Drexel Plisse Skirt, J. Crew, Size 8. I am shocked this hasn't sold out, at least for the shorter ladies. It is a SHORT skirt, but it is super-comfy, very easy to dress up or down, and is a flattering shape. Plus it packs well and is wrinkle-resistant. I highly recommend it if you can carry off the shorter length. I can only get away with it because my thighs are shorter relative to my overall height. I also sized up so I could pull it down a bit.
Shoes: Kenneth Cole Reaction "they saved my feet" fancy flip-flops. :)
Scarf: En Plein Air Scarf, J. Crew. Same print as the fleurette that I love, but cannot wear. Sigh. ;)

Last but not least is the outfit I wore to the American Museum of Natural History. Yes, more walking. :)

Top: Racerback Tank, Banana Republic, X-Small. I rarely buy from Banana Republic anymore, but I did like this tank. I knew I could make it work in the summer, and in the winter under a cardi. Only issue I had was that the Fenton-Fallon necklace created some pilling, but I know that I can take the shaver to the tank and get rid of the pills.
Pants: Scout Chinos, J. Crew, Size 8.
Shoes: Same as in Outfit #2.
Necklace: Fenton-Fallon for J. Crew Tassle Necklace.

Baby is wearing a Jacadi Liberty of London printed cotton dress. It even has matching bloomers. :)

Have a lovely Father's Day, you all.

P.S. I will comment back, have been away from the computer more than I would like, but plan on getting as much done today and tomorrow as I can. Wish me luck!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

A Few New Arrivals...and Some Not So New...

I have been inundated with relatives these past few days, and while we are having a FAB time, I am both at once exhausted and exhilarated. Also, I have ZERO time to update my blog, so there you go...

I did take a teeny-weeny little baby break last night to hang with my girl drewablank (love it that she lives close enough to just run over to the mall together). We had to go to J. Crew to see the new arrivals, and of course I brought my camera with me to get the photographic evidence of some of the new atrocities (oops, I mean arrivals) at our local. (Just kidding, only one or two were atrocities.)

Remember the pic of me and Rex walking in NYC? Now look at the scarf...I ADORE this print, so when I heard there was going to be many items in this print, I was all...ooooooooooooh! And then I tried them on... (P.S. You will get NYC photos later...I wanted to get these up 'cause I know a lot of you love seeing new arrivals on a "real" body...)

Fleurette Pencil Skirt...size 8. Made from a linen/silk combo, it is a beauty. That said, this puppy was TIGHT through my hips and yet gaping at the waist. Sigh. I like it a lot, and really wanted to be happier in it, but alas, I couldn't get jazzed. I would need to buy a 10 and take in the waist to make this one work for me. BTW, wait until you see a size 2 skirt on me in a minute. J. Crew is KILLING me with their size discrepancies. Seriously...10 in one skirt and a freaking 2 in another???

Side view. By the way my kicks are Boden and the jacket is the polished slub Maryn Jacket.

Fleurette shorts...size 10, not on-line. Made from cotton, they fit fine, but I hated the pleating at the front, and I don't really care for the shorter inseam (even with my shorter thighs). Annoying overall and I was more than happy to leave this pair behind. Oh, and how unfortunate is the print right there at the crotch area? :P Ugh.

Side view. Whatever. Why couldn't these have been made in a bermuda short?

Daisy Day Skirt...size 6. Cotton Liberty Print Fabric (love)...I tried this on EXPECTING that the 6 would work. As drewablank pointed out I looked part schoolgirl/part schoolmarm in this size. She insisted I try a smaller size, a 4 and a 2. She was right. :)

Side view makes it way more obvious that she was right. BTW, the skirt is $59.99 in stores.

Fleurette Bustier Dress...size 6. Also made from a silk/linen combo, there is absolutely no give to this fabric. The 6 fit but was TIGHT. I did try on the 8 and it fit better, but the bust was too loose. Sigh. I do like the way it looks, but drewablank and I were cracking up at how I would not be able to eat anything if I went out to dinner in this dress. LOL.

I did not buy any of the fleurette items (are you surprised?)...and I also did not buy the sweatshirt dress (no way, no how am I showing you those photos--the model looks terrible in the on-line photo, I look way way WAY worse). I did, however, buy the two items above. The maryn jacket was $59.99, btw, and I got in the size 6 (last one in the store). The daisy day skirt is in a size 2. Yes, you read that right. Doesn't it look far better than the 6?

And here is my "I am exhausted and have NO desire to really bring it" outfit that I wore to the store. At least my Boden canvas plimsolls were comfy and matched my Target sea life necklace. :)

Have a great afternoon.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Boden, I "Fall" for You Every Time...

Yes, please, I will have you, Miss "Audrey Dress." And a little more of what the ever-lovely Vanessa Lorenzo is having, too, s'il vous plaît.

Thank you, thank you, thank you, Jane, for making me aware of the presence of the Boden Autumn Preview. YAY! I was stuck subbing all day--and get this--I didn't have my computer (shocker), so I didn't see what Jane had written until just mere minutes ago!

Check out the preview and report back your favorites!!! :) Have fun!

P.S. I will do my NYC pics!!! I PROMISE...just a bit tied down, so to speak. ;)

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Short Sleeve Cashmere Tee for Summer!!!

Sorry about not posting or talking to anyone at all yesterday. I barely managed to talk with my kids. Yep, I got a killer migraine and basically laid on the couch while the kids watched hours of TV. They loved it. I felt bad. Oh, well, I guess that is what you do when you are their only "daycare." LOL. Thank goodness Mr. Dina came home a little early.

BTW, they are getting worse. I used to get 4-5 migraines a month but the medicine would stop them. Now I get two max a month but they are miserable beyond belief and the medication barely dents the pain. Sigh. Any thoughts, doctors? :)

Above is the polyvore of TODAY's outfit. Yep, today (I got an actual IRL outfit on the day I am wearing it--woohoo). I wore the short-sleeve cashmere tee because there was some talk over at JCA yesterday about whether short-sleeve cashmere was even a viable choice as it would be too hot in summer and too light in winter. Umm, guess what? It is perfect for today. :) This is a featherweight blend and I feel quite comfortable, and I tend to run "hot." The high, btw? 85 degrees!!!

Top: Size small. I bought this Cashmere stripe scoopneck tee on sale a little while ago and I love it all, the texture, the color, and the bit of silver sparkly edging at the neckline.
Shorts: Size 10. From the Loft, last summer.
Shoes: Size 10.

Once again I am wearing the crystal coletto necklace. I think I wear these necklaces the most out of my whole collection. They just seem to go with everything!

Have a great day!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Date Night!!!

Okay, so I covered going out with the gals last night, and today I am going to show an outfit I wore on one of my dates with my husband (there are not many of those anymore)!

Above is the polyvore of this outfit. It turned out to be more comfortable that you would imagine. So, you go, J. Crew...I feel they have been churning out more "dressy" comfortable clothes than not in the past half a year or so...

Size 8. This is the tweed Contessa dress and while shorter, it is still a flattering length on most. I think, though, if you are taller than 5'9" or so, you may have to find a way to take the hem down a bit.
Cardigan: Size Small. This is the trifle cardigan in plum. What an amazing color. I have buttoned it up for this photo. It can be worn opened, but some of you may not like a "unique" feature that this cardigan has (see the next photo for more).
Shoes: Size 9.5. Hey! I have pulled the Alecias out for another run...

Why is CW so somber? Did she want sushi, too?

Belt: Size small. Skinny belt from last year, in silver.

The necklace and the bracelet are the Tangled Treasure and I find that I wear these a lot more than one would think for such "funky" jewelry.

See what I was saying about the Trifle cardigan's uniqueness? The ruffle goes all the way down on the right side, but stops halfway on the left side (or the side that hides under the placket when buttoned). I don't mind it, but I also own the tangled treasure necklace, so I know I have a fancy for the whimsical. :)

And here is the tweed Contessa, without the cardigan. I love that it has pockets. Just a great place for putting your hands (does anyone else have problems finding what to do with wayward limbs?).

It was a great night, btw. Mr. Dina brought me to a yummy sushi restaurant in Ballston Mall (Arlington, VA) and we definitely splurged...I had an amazing Bento box full of goodies and Mr. Dina had one of those crazy rolls with cheese and tuna and salmon and avocados, etc.

Talk with you all soon. Have a great Tuesday!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Mommy Style Monday #6--Girls' Night Out!

A little over a week ago, a good blog friend named Carrie wrote to me and asked me for some ideas for an outfit to wear for going out with a good friend on a proverbial "Girls' _____ Out." In Carrie's case, it was a daytime event, but often girls go out at night (hence the post's title)! :) I loved that I was able to give Carrie some ideas, as she already has a fab closet full of great items from our very favorite retailer, J. Crew.

Armed with her desires (specifically which items she wanted to wear the most), I created two separate polyvores for her Girls' Day Out.

Above is the polyvore that shows off a great option if you are going out with the girls and it will be fairly warm. The silk cargo dress, which you saw on me here, is a fab option when the temperature is very high, as the silk dress is airy and lightweight. I like that this option will be effortlessly chic, especially if you pull your hair back in a ponytail and just "go." :)

The next polyvore I created for a day out when it isn't super-warm, but still spring or summer. The zebra-print cardigan can be taken off if it gets warmer during the day, but often, especially in the summer in movie theaters, the AC is on super-high and all of a sudden, the cardigan is a great item to have stashed in your purse (especially if it is a big one like the Andie bag--what mom doesn't have a ridiculously oversized purse). Plus the pops of color are a lot of fun, and will really help you stand out on your "day out."

Now, I didn't go into Carrie's conundrum without some insight to it myself. In fact I have recently started FORCING myself to go out with the ladies more often. I love my kids (clearly) but I started to feel like my socializing skills were atrophying, and that is just kind of uncool. Do I expect to turn into the 22-year old I was, partying with my friends until 2 am, drinking a lot of alcohol, sleeping it off at some one's house in the city? No, and frankly, I have zero desire to go back to that (hangovers are a B****).

That said, I have a closet full of incredible clothes that I DO try to wear out regardless of whether or not I am with the kids (you all know I love a bit of sparkle for my preschool runs), but I can't 100% get all glammed up with the kids. For one, is it really practical to have a full face of makeup, a lot of jewelry, sequins, and some kick-a** heels while toting CW to the coffee shop and Rex to McDonald's? Even I have to admit "probably not." ;)

Okay, so I had planned two separate girls' night out, and here is my attempt at giving it my all, sans kids. I think I did just fine. Maybe not 22-year old clubbing fine, but for my nights out, it was just what I needed.

Above is the insanely popular polyvore I created about a month or so back that was based on an Anthropologie catalog look. I love this shot, and I thought my "copy" did it justice. Definitely not as many frills (but really, who outside a few Anthropologie models can get away with that many ruffles), but still pretty awesome, regardless. I knew in the back of my mind that if the top came in good shape and it worked with my skin tone that I would definitely be trying this look out.

I got the opportunity when the ever-awesome drewablank and kater invited me to chill with them in Friendship Heights (upper DC, almost MD--I know, I went almost to MD, I think I really love these gals--haha, just kidding, Maryland). It was a simple night of shopping and dinner, but to me it was like feasting on the forbidden garden's fruit, so very tasty, and a bit criminal (how dare I have this much fun)!

Cardigan: Size small. From J. Crew last summer.
Top: Size 4. Definitely sized down and it is perfect. Love this color, too, like a precious honey that costs a lot more than the honey in a bear. ;)
Pants: Size Tall 6. Umm, these freaking denim leggings from J. Crew are so amazingly comfortable. I had tried them in a size regular 8 and they were all wrong--too short everywhere and just not the right ones for me. A tall 6? Plenty of length everywhere and plenty of support, too. I bought them in black, too.
Shoes: Size 9.5. These Alecias are getting more and more comfortable the more I wear them. I am almost at 4 hours now!

The necklace is by Fiona Paxton. Anthropologie sold it as the "Aerial View Necklace." I had been salivating over it for months and months. Then I sucked it up when Bloomingdale's had a sale and got it for 20% off. But then I felt guilty and returned it (so sad). But then, I saw it on ebay for nearly 100 dollars off, and I jumped at the chance to grab it...and have not looked back. (BTW, I would think this kind of necklace would be very hard to replicate, it is intricate! I am in no way worried about it being a fake.)

And, yes, baby looks happy for me, so that made it easier to face the red line on Metro. (However, as anyone in DC can attest, that doesn't mean that the red line is at all friendly or comfortable or even worthy of any other label than "a special circle of hell.")

Close-up of the Oscillating Folds Top and the Aerial View necklace (called the Sylvia on other websites). Cannot say I will be wearing this necklace with the kids, I think it may be for adults only nights! Can you blame me?

I again had the opportunity to go out with just the girls thanks to drewablank last Wednesday night as she invited me to hang with her beautiful friends for drinks at a local watering hole, and I am so glad I did. Obviously I loved wearing extra-special clothing, but I really loved being able to just chill...and that is all...just chill (doesn't that sound NICE?).

Size 6. This is the Sequined Starland Tank, and I believe Michelle Obama wore this a few weeks ago with a red pants-suit. I definitely took it down a notch, but still a neat top. The 6 was the right size as the length of the top is long and I needed to accommodate my hips (it runs narrow through there) but I believe a 4 would have fit better through the bust. That said, I love the way it looks on so I guess I did right!
Pants: Size 8. I love these pants, regardless of popping buttons. LOL. I think Jenna Lyons would like the way I paired the more manly capri pants with a very girly blouse. (Maybe?)
Shoes: Size 41, which I believe works out to a size 9.5. These are the Boden snake-print sandals and I cannot say enough nice things about them. I find that these adjustable type sandals make for happy feet...even when you have a narrow foot, the buckles allow you to tailor the width to what you desire. Again, Johnnie Boden, SWAK!

Look at how lovely drewablank looks. So pretty!!! Love the belt!

And CW? Umm, hello, even holding Fritos the girl looks super-feminine! :)

Close-up of the tank. LOVE IT!

On that note, let's review! I have a list of four things to remember on your next night off from being a mommy:

1. STEP OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE. I am already comfortable with sequins, obviously, but mixing accessories with sequins, and make-up, and special shoes is a whole new world for me. Being willing to take the whole look on rush-hour metro is definitely worthy of "out of my element!" For some of you, stepping out of your comfort zone may translate to wearing a sundress and sandals and straightening your hair. And that is great...try it and find what your new "zone" might bring you!

2. BUT NOT TOO MUCH. You know, I couldn't have added a newsboy cap and 15 necklaces to my sequined starland tank outfit, and here is why...I would have felt conspicuous. I like people to look at me, but if I have people staring, I immediately would think, "it's the hat, right, it's too much, right?" LOL. Each mommy has their own comfort zone, so some of you could rock the newsboy/15 necklaces/sequined harem pants, but others of you would find that even my outfits take you too far. You DO NOT want to spend your night off thinking about some minor part of your outfit that by you choosing to wear it has turned into something major. If you only have a few hours a month to enjoy yourself, make that your VERY FIRST PRIORITY, not looking edgy/chic/whatever. ;)

3. WEAR THOSE ITEMS THAT ARE NOT KID-FRIENDLY. Don't really have to explain this one, do I? Hahahahaha.

4. MAKEUP IS FOR MOMMIES, TOO. I normally wear a bit of lip gloss, some powder, and maybe mascara. You can tell that I wore a lot more than I usually do in the Anthropologie-inspired look. I wanted to. It felt weird at first, and I thought it might be too much, but at the end of the evening, when just a touch was left, I just had a nice glow. And really, isn't that the goal of the girls' ____ out? To get that feeling and that look?

You all have a great night! BTW, don't be shy! I loved hearing from Carrie, and would love to hear from more of you!