Thursday, October 17, 2019

Lately





Today has been a good week! Nothing crazy has been going on but I got a lot done and checked off to-do list items left and right!

We are headed to my fiancé's family's house on Saturday for the day/night! Next weekend, though, we have 0 plans and I am so looking forward to it. We have had SO many weddings and things going on that our weekends have just been go, go, go lately! And after the 10/25 weekend, we don't have a single weekend free until 12/20 haha! All really fun things, though, and it's just the season of business!

I know I will start to feel overwhelmed so I've started to look into outsourcing a few things... most importantly a cleaning service/maid. I actually don't mind cleaning at all and enjoy the accomplished feeling of a clean house. I have always cleaned everything on my own for as long as I can remember so hiring a maid seems a little like a defeat but at the same time, I think it will bring both me and my fiancé a little sanity during this busy time and help us to focus on more important things. The difference between cleaning a home and an apartment is way more than we both imagined and it's not lost on me that I am fortunate enough to be able to hire the help I need.


Last Thursday, we sent out our Save the Dates and it has been so fun to get texts from friends and families saying that they have received them and love them! I will share them with all of you next week! Speaking of correspondence, we are also about to order our holiday cards. I debated on whether or not to send them out this year as a couple, but since we already have everyone's addresses neatly organized and this will be our only engaged holiday season, I figured why not! It will be fun to look back on them years from now and remember this exciting time. I'll share them with you eventually!

Wearing: How pretty is this dress?! It's the perfect mix of classic and fun but what I love about it most is that the collar is removable. Seriously. So it can be a mock neck or a crewneck and it definitely changes the look! It runs true to size- I am wearing a size 2. The top is a little more fitted but the bottom is very a-line and is roomy! I also love this burgundy cocktail printed dress (only $60)- it reminds me of the above dress but I love the leopard look to it!

Eating: This cabbage roll soup is a recipe my sister sent me and I am going to make it ASAP. I love cabbage and this recipe sounds absolutely delicious! Such a perfect dish for a cold fall night!

Reading: Love this article about ceramic Christmas trees. We have always had one up every year at my parent's. My mom made one when she was in her early 20's at a ceramics class and I just love the nostalgia that comes with them. I'm going to try and find a ceramics class this year so I can make one for our home. I love tradition! 

Watching:
 The trailer for Dolittle came out and it looks SO good. I can't wait to go see it. 

Listening: I keep adding to my fall playlist- it's really good and has a lot of upbeat songs! 


Wanting:
 'Tis the season to want everything, ugh!! There are so many fun winter and holiday pieces out right now! I found these gorgeous Frye boots over 50% off. They are such a classic style and Frye is such a high-quality brand! Speaking of classics, this pajama set is about as timeless as you get and they are on major sale (under $40). It would make for a great holiday gift or perfect if you are into matching pajamas for the holidays! 


Pittsburgh-ing: On Tuesday night, I went out to dinner with some girlfriends. We went to Alta Via in Fox Chapel and it was SO good. Seriously, I am already planning on going back. It's Italian food which is phenomenal but on top of that, the interior design is drool-worthy. Definitely a gem in Pittsburgh. The Trig Point cabernet that we got was excellent, too. It was full-bodied, dry, and easy to drink- I am going to try and find it in the state store and snag a few bottles! 

Quoting: 'The test of good manners is to be able to put up pleasantly with bad ones.' - Wendell Wilkie// See more of my favorites, here. 

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Wedding Wednesday: Winter White Dresses


Bride or not, I love a winter white look. However, it's a little bit harder to pull off in the winter than in the summer, don't you think? In the summer, pretty much any fabric goes, but in the winter, you have to make sure you find a winter-weight white. It knocks out a bunch of gorgeous fabrics like white linen, eyelet, etc. 

So, today I'm sharing lots of great winter white dresses at all different price ranges. I soooo wish the white dress I wore for our engagement photos was still in stock. It was so perfect for December 31st, but was equally as perfect when I wore it in June in Nantucket. The dress was from Tuckernuck! But I'm determined to find some stunners!


Scroll through the widget above to see some of my favorites! One of my favorite brands is Marchesa Notte. It's a little pricey, but they have some of the most incredible white dresses. I got one for my bridal shower and I am so in love! I also included a few that aren't white but are very neutral and are pieces I think would be gorgeous for a bride-to-be to wear for a shower or other wedding event! 

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

24 Hours In New York and Connecticut


24 Hours In New York and Connecticut
We had a jampacked, fun weekend so I thought it would be great to share alllll of the photos I snapped (on my iPhone). This is a very long post- text and photo-heavy, so keep scrolling! We landed in NYC at 7:30am so we had a full 24-hours in the city before we were off to Connecticut for my friend Katie's wedding! 

Throughout my life, I have been to NYC more times than I could even count. I grew up visiting with my parents because my uncle lived there for many years. Then, as a post-grad and in my early 20's, a lot of my friends moved to NYC so I was always visiting. Add in a bunch of trips for my blog (fashion week, projects with brands, etc.) and I feel like I am a seasoned NYC visitor. Even so, it's always changing, so keeping up when only visiting a few times a year is tough! 

But, I thought I would share with you all what we did when we had exactly 24-hours in the city. I've done this type of post before (back in 2015) which has similar recommendations but this is a fun updated version! My fiancé had never been to NYC before (which is just mind-boggling to me hah!). NYC is very easy to get to from Pittsburgh... the flight is not only (usually) inexpensive but it's also only 50 minutes door to door. 

So normally I would not have tried to cover this much ground in a trip (plus I think your itinerary looks so different depending who you are with), but I wanted to see as much of NYC as possible. We hit 30,000 steps in those 24 hours!! 

To start off, we headed all the way downtown to One World Trade. I figured we would start south and work our way up and that ended up working out very well. The 911 Memorial is so touching and incredible. It was the #1 thing that my fiancé wanted to see. I still haven't made it to the museum... we tried to do it on our last trip, but tickets for the day we wanted to do it were sold- so buy tickets in advance if you can. Someday I will get there because I have heard it is so well done and so moving. I also haven't been to the top of One World Trade- another thing I would love to do, but have never made the time to do so! After the 911 Memorial, we headed over to the Oculus. It's really just one big mall and transportation hub. So while there is nothing crazy inside, the architecture is SO cool and worth taking a peek! 
We then walked up through TriBeCa and into SoHo. There is SO much in these areas but since it was still so early, there, unfortunately, wasn't much open. I was still glad that my fiancé was able to see the different neighborhoods, though! I spotted the cutest One Kings Lane boutique while wandering as well as The Real Real. I wish they had both been open, but it's probably better for my wallet that they weren't!
We had a reservation for breakfast at Sadelle's in SoHo (almost in the Village). I had seen it all over Instagram so I knew I had to make a reservation. There is nothing I love more than a lox bagel- seriously one of my favorite foods ever so this menu truly excited me. It did not disappoint. It's the cutest place with great service and delicious food. 

With full bellies, we headed out to do some more walking. From there, we walked through Greenwich Village and up to Washington Square Park...this area is probably my most favorite in the entire city. It's so charming and quaint. Then we headed to the Flatiron area. I live for the Club Monaco there so we made a pit stop and I snagged these great cream-colored jeans which are the perfect 'winter' white. I actually have been unimpressed with CM lately- there hasn't been anything I have been dying for in quite a while, which is very unusual because CM is one of my very favorite brands!
After that, we took a cab to midtown where we were staying at one of my favorites, The Kimberly, to check-in! I love this hotel because it's in the center of everything (there's a Starbucks basically next door and a Duane Reade around the block, so you have quick access to things you might need) and because you are centrally located, you can get to about anywhere in the city easily. Not to mention that every room has a balcony and the rooms are HUGE and well-appointed. I could not recommend this hotel more! I mean look at our balcony's view!! 

Since we had been up since 3:30am, we took a quick power nap and then headed back out to explore some more! 

We went into St. Patrick's Cathedral. No matter what your faith is, the architecture alone is definitely worth stopping for. It's incredible and such an NYC icon. Then we popped right over to Rockefeller Center. This is often a madhouse of tourists, so if you are not desperate to see it, I'd skip it. But we braved the crowds and walked through.


Our main objective was to check off a wedding to-do item! We headed into Cartier which is the largest Cartier boutique in the world (6-stories). The building was originally built as someone's home (can you even imagine) and in 1917, the homeowner (ahem, the mansion owner) sold his home to Louis Cartier for a double strand of pearls. The Cartier salespeople share this story with you when you go in and you can see the pearls in a frame on the bottom floor. Each salesperson you encounter shares tidbits of history with you which are so fascinating! 

Even if you don't plan on buying anything in the mansion, it's truly work going in just to appreciate the architecture and incredible jewels. The photo you see on the right is the Princess Grace room (named after Grace Kelly) and displays incredibly rare and unique jewels. If you look closely, you can see the Monaco coat of arms on the walls. 

I have purchased a couple pieces of Cartier jewelry before (a ring and a watch) but have to say that the service and attention to detail in the Cartier Mansion went above and beyond anything I had ever experienced before! So if you are planning to buy a Cartier piece and can buy it there, I 100% would! 

One of the best things that this Cartier boutique did is that they put the Cartier bag in an unmarked white bag and the bag had a 'top' on it so it just looked like an unmarked shopping bag and if you looked inside the bag, you couldn't see anything. So genius (especially if you are buying a surprise gift) and we felt safe carrying it with us for the next hour or so that we were walking around!

We walked around Central Park. The weather had been calling for rain all week and it ended up being incredibly gorgeous! We then stopped at The Plaza food hall to grab a bottle of champagne and head back to our room to freshen up for dinner! 
ralph lauren the polo bar nycralph lauren the polo bar nyc

ralph lauren the polo bar nycralph lauren the polo bar nyc
Since there are so many incredible restaurants in NYC, I really try not to visit the same ones too often. However, The Polo Bar is seriously a must for your trip. This was my second time going and the first time, I thought that everyone loved it because of it's incredibly gorgeous Ralph Lauren-designed atmosphere and the food would be just OK, but The Polo Bar is a dining experience with some of the best food I have ever had. 

A reservation is really tough to get. Both times we have gone, I have gone online literally at midnight exactly one month before the day of the reservation I wanted to make and I have been able to secure one. You can't get in without a reservation- not even into the bar area. 

The food is very American- think hotdogs and hamburgers, which makes things sound very casual, but in true Ralph fashion these are not your average hotdogs. The corned beef sandwich is my favorite thing ever and this time I got the creamed spinach and OMG. I think I filled up on that more than anything else it was so insanely delicious. 

The vibe is so cozy and intimate and the decor so perfect. With such a hard-to-get reservation, you'd think the staff would be snobby. But no. The staff is impeccable. So welcoming and ready to do whatever you ask of them. Highly, highly recommend. 


We then headed over to The Plaza for a nightcap. I miss the Oak Room!!! For some reason during this visit, I felt like The Plaza looked and felt 'tired'. That's saying something because it is a New York icon and I have long loved the hotel for the grand ambiance and incredible historical architecture. While The Palm Court and Champagne bar are beautiful, I think the rest of the areas- even the foyer entrance, need to be cleaned up a bit. Our drinks were great, our service was just OK. I thought I might have been too critical or something, so I looked up recent reviews and a lot of reviewers are saying the same things that I was thinking. So it seems to not just be me but it needs a refresher! 
Outfit One:

Outfit Two:

We took a train from Grand Central to Connecticut for Katie and Nick's wedding. In the past, I have always used Penn Station (which is icky) and the contrast between Penn and Grand Central is night and day!!! 


Katie's wedding was at a beautiful farm in Sharon, CT. The wedding was absolutely incredible and the views of the fall foliage were perfect. I could not get over the beauty of this location!! Not only that but the wedding was lovely and so much fun. It was so nice to see Carly and Kendall who I haven't seen for a while, and meet Carter!

Monday, October 14, 2019

Amazon Favorites




I haven't done an Amazon favorite post in quite some time. So I figured what better time than now because this headband was the #1 top seller on summerwindblog.com for September! You can view all of my Amazon favorites, here and below, I'm sharing my latest 25 favorites along with a highlight of a few! I update my Amazon page frequently and will especially be updating it with holiday items as we get closer to November! 

Belt Bag// This is like a streamlined fanny pack. I use it to hold my phone when I am walking Henry. It's lightweight, slim, and so convenient. 

Birthday Candles// These are so much fun and remind me of the metallic balloons! 

Headbands// You guys know I am obsessed with these headbands! I found a set of 6 for $14!

Wrapping Paper Storage// This is so easy to have in a closet or in my case, we hang it on the side of our shelving units in the garage. With the holidays coming, I always amass so much wrapping stuff so this is a great way to organize it and keep it in one place. 

Travel Power Strip// I take this with me whenever I travel anywhere, but it's compatible for international travel, too. It's sleek and lightweight but really nice quality so you can plug anything in! 

Spray Cleaner// This cleaner will seriously clean ANYTHING. I used to have the powder version which is great, but I find the spray to be more convenient!
 

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