What's New December

Every month I like to do a little catching up on all of the products, music, books, movies, etc. that I'm enjoying that don't usually find their way into regular outfit posts. So today I'm joining "What's New With You" to share just that!

What I'm reading:
November was an emotional month and I was in the mood for easy, emotional, girly reads. I also traveled to/from my Dad's funeral which gave me a lot of time to read on the airplane, so I got through way more than my average two books this month!

Image via: Colleen Hoover

Enter Colleen Hoover, who is my go-to for exactly that type of book. I stared the month with November 9 zipped through it and finished it before November 9. Then I read It Ends With UsConfess, and Ugly Love. I liked all of them but my favorites were November 9  and It Ends With Us.

I'm currently reading: The Chemist by Stephenie Meyer
available on Amazon

Yep, that's the Twilight author back at it. I was struggling to get into it and follow along because there are a lot of vague references to people I don't understand. But around 10% the narrative changed into something I could follow more clearly. Now I'm at 13% and intrigued, so we'll see how the rest of it goes!

What I'm listening to:
I use Google Play Music/Google All Access (that's the family share plan we use) and I've been enjoying the station "Pop Before it Breaks." I've found some good new artists and tunes thanks to that station. I'm also loving the Hamilton Soundtrack. I've been listening to it with my kids (with some editing for language and content) and it's been kind of a fun way for us to learn more about American History and the American Revolution. After we hear certain song lines we'll Google the character/event to learn more or check for accuracy.

What I'm Watching:
Now that Dancing with the Stars is over, I'm not really watching any TV shows. On Thanksgiving we were pretty bored after eating and ended up watching a marathon of The Carbonaro Effect. It was entertaining and a good family-friendly option.

What I'm Eating:
Carylee mentioned how much she loved this jerky from Lorissa's kitchen a few months ago on her Snapchat so naturally I had to try it. It's so good! It's softer than most jerky and this flavor is a nice balance of sweet and spicy. I haven't tried any of the other flavors because it's not exactly cheap and I'm afraid to mess with a good thing!
Available at Target

What Else is New:
I shared these on my Instagram story this month but in case you missed it, I am really loving my new mouse pad. I was originally planning to get something basic, but I stumbled on the cat on the unicorn option below and the rest is history. I ended up letting my kids choose new options too and they got the other two on the top row.  There were quite a few ridiculous options so it was kind of hard to choose. I can easily see some of the other options making good holiday gifts for people I know who share a quirky sense of humor.
Mouse Pad Humor
Top Row: One | Two | Three
Bottom Row: Four | Five | Six

Top Outfits of the November:
Every month I review my top four most-liked outfits of the month so I can see what people like from me as a blogger (or not!) and how well that aligns with what I like. So here are my November top four:

Tee: Express | Jeans: Express | Shoes: Amazon | Bag: c/o Fossil | Nails: Essie Model Clicks | Necklace: LOFT (Similar) | Ring: Rebecca Minkoff (Gift)

Jacket: Nordstrom | Cami: Express (Current Version) | Jeans: ExpressNecklace: Kendra Scott | Bracelets: Charmed Stacks | Bag: Amazon | Booties: Amazon

Jacket: Express | Tank: Target (Similar) | Jeans: Express | Choker: Amazon | Bag: Danielle Nicole (Similar) | Shoes: Amazon | Nails: Essie Model Clicks

Top: Express (Similar, Same Print with Lace Front) | Jeans: Express | Shoes: Sole Society | Necklace: Kendra Scott | Watch: Fossil | Bag: Amazon | Ring: Nordstrom | Nails: Essie Model Clicks

Front View:
Individual front view outfits here

So that's what's going on around here this month! In other "what's new" news, my Black Friday orders are rolling in and I am gradually trying things on and making some decisions about what to keep vs. return. I may not have a typical Friday post up tomorrow since I want to get all that taken care of ASAP. I'll try to post some reviews and updates here if there are any surprises that might be helpful to others. Thanks for reading!

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Outfit Recap: 11/29/16

After all the craziness of Black Friday/Cyber Monday I'm in the mood to keep it simple here today.  As usual I'm joining Lindsey for "What I Wore Wednesday" so here's a quick recap of outfits I've worn recently.

Sweater: LOFT (Similar) | Faux Leather Leggings: Express | Tank: Target (Maternity for length) | Necklace: Kendra Scott | Shoes: Express (Similar) | Bag: Amazon (Exact style, studded option sold out)

Shop the Look:

Tee: Express (Current) | Jeans: Express | Booties: Amazon | Bag: Amazon (Exact color sold out)| Watch: Fossil | Short Necklace: Jewelry | Long Necklace: Stella & Dot | Ring: Stella & Dot (Gift)

Shop the Look:


Jacket: Maurice's (Similar) | Tank: Target (Maternity for length) | Leggings: Express | Necklace: Express (Similar) | Boots: Amazon (my color sold out, Similar Color/Style) | Bag: Amazon

Shop the Look:


Grey Sweater: Express (Similar) | Black Cami: Express | Jeans: Express | Shoes: Express | Necklace: Kendra Scott | Watch: Fossil | Bracelets: Charmed Stacks | Ring: Stella & Dot (Gift) | Bag: Amazon

Shop the Look:

Front View:
Individual Front View Outfits found here.

Well, that's about as basic as it gets but that's all I have today! I do want to say a quick thank you to all the bloggers that joined our Black Friday Link-Up and congrats to Natasha who won the Nordstrom Gift Card Prize! Tomorrow I'll be joining Kristen and Gretchen for "What's New With You" to chat about some of the non-outfit stuff I've been into like books, movies, music, etc. so be sure to check back tomorrow if you're into that sort of thing!

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Cyber Monday: Staples and Purchases

Is it just me or were the Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales this year bigger and better than ever? I admittedly spent more than I planned because the deals were impossible pass up. But I'm also pretty sure that a lot of things I ordered won't work out and I'm better off deciding what to keep vs. return once I try it all in person. I shared my Express Sale purchases in this post and today I wanted to share some of my personal favorites and purchases from other retailers before the prices go back up.

Nordstrom & Kendra Scott Staples on Sale:

Kendra Scott currently has 20% off the entire site through today with the code SALE20, and Nordstrom is price matching! So pick your favorite retailer and happy shopping on some pieces that don't go on sale very often. My two favorite necklaces that I own in multiple colors are the Rayne necklace (shown below with the grey tee) and the Elisa pendant (the shorter necklace shown with the burgundy tee). On top of that, this t-shirt from Nordstrom is also on sale at Nordstrom (under $17) through today! I have it in grey, white and burgundy and just ordered Blush and Black thanks to the sale.
Tee: Nordstrom | Jeans: Express (50% off today) | Necklace: Nordstrom  | Watch: Fossil | Hat: Forever 21 (Similar) | Watch: Fossil | Shoes: Amazon

Here's another outfit with the V Neck Tee and Elisa Pendant:
Tee: Nordstrom | Jeans: Express (Similar) | Short Necklace: Nordstrom (My exact color sold out, closest option in my opinion is Brown Pearl) | Long Necklace: Express | Watch: c/o Fossil | Shoes: Amazon | Bag: Tory Burch (Option)

It's really hard to choose a color for these, especially if it's your first purchase, so for what it's worth, my very most-used Elisa pendant is the Platinum Druzy. The mixed metal look really makes it go with everything. After glancing through my Instagram feed, my most-used Rayne necklace is Maroon Jade followed by Magenta.

Here's the front view for these outfits plus two more outfits featuring these closet staples:

Outfits One & Two: Details directly above this image

Outfit Three
Tee: Nordstrom | Jeans: Express | Shoes: Forever 21 (Similar) | Bag: Tory Burch (Option) | Short Necklace: Nordstrom "Magenta" | Long Necklace: Express

Outfit Four:
Grey Sweater: Express | Cami: Express | Necklace: Nordstrom (Maroon Jade) | Jeans: Express | Shoes: Express (Similar)

Jewelry Purchases
Kendra Scott and Stella & Dot are a couple of my jewelry favorites and they both had really great sales for Black Friday. Kendra's runs through today but I'm not sure yet if the Stella & Dot pieces will still be on sale today. Regardless, I particularly wanted to add some mixed metal necklaces and earrings to my jewelry collection (I talked about my accessorizing strategies and reasons for loving mixed metals in this post) along with some classic looking styles:

Kendra Scott Stella Dot Favorites

Clothing Purchases
As mentioned above, you can find my full list of Express purchases here and try-ons of the pieces that already arrived (ShopRunner shipping for the win!) here. I was on a mission to get a light grey moto jacket during the sales, and I ordered three candidates. I don't intend to keep all three of them but I do need to compare them in person to decide. The jackets from Nordstrom Rack (the first two below) aren't on sale but are reasonably priced (under $70), and the Nordstrom option is still on sale through today.

Grey Moto Jacket Options

I haven't tried or even seen any of these in person yet so I can't offer any other helpful info on them. But I love seeing what other people order during the sales so I'm sharing my choices anyway for those who like to know. I'm also hoping fit and quality will make the decision easy for me when I get all three in my hands because I definitely cannot justify keeping all of them!

I also ordered several tops at Macy's (first three) and Nordstrom:
Black Friday 2016 purchases
Black/Buffalo Plaid Top  | Grey/Black/White | Striped Tee | Grey Sweater (sold out in most sizes)

I don't own any layered tops like the two I purchased but I love the concept so I'm hoping they work out for me since I'm not too familiar with the fit, sizing or quality of the brand.

That does it for me! I will be doing quite a lot of returns in the coming weeks and hopefully not too many purchases because my bank account needs a break. Hope you all had some shopping success over the holiday as well!

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50% Off Sale Extended: New Item Try-Ons

Happy Saturday everyone! I received a few of my Express Black Friday purchases yesterday and tried them all on so I wanted to quickly share some pics and reviews today since the big 50% off sale has been extended!

Here are the four tops I received:
1. Black Sweater | 2. Olive Sweater | 3. Blush Sweater  | 4. Slim Fit Portofino
(Details for each outfit below)

1. Black Fitted Sweater
Worn above with Express Bralette (Similar) & Mini Skirt (Similar), Target Tights, Booties from Amazon.

I have always loved the Mila Kunis outfit below (or at least since 2013 when I created that graphic!) and I have a couple of sequin mini skirts in my closet from years past, but I didn't have the right top to wear with them for this look. I wanted to have one on hand for parties and events in the next month and as a warmer layer under my jackets for casual looks. This sweater is true to size but definitely fitted and also requires a cami or bralette (as shown above) because it's a very deep V neck. The sweater is a keeper for me though because it's exactly what I wanted for this look.

Mila Kunis inspired sequin mini skirt outfit
(Items featured in this image are from Express in 2013)

Worn above with Express jeans and booties.

I loved this sweater after seeing it on Caryl, but I wasn't too sure about the length because on the model it's so cropped it doesn't even cover her waistband. It's longer on me than the model, but shorter on me than on Caryl, so I guess torso length is a big factor in the fit. Aside from that, it's really cute and comfortable in person but I haven't 100% decided if I'm comfortable with the shorter length or if it will make me self conscious lifting my arms, etc.

3Blush Sweater
Worn above with Express jeans and booties.

This is another new-to-me style. The v-neck is definitely much deeper on me than on the model and if I keep it, I'll have to wear a cami (as shown). The distressing on the sweater is subtle and not too sheer, so that doesn't bother me. It's very comfy and cozy, but quite oversized and a little bulky. Once again, I'm a little on the fence with this piece on myself, but overall if it's a style you like there aren't any real surprises with this except the deeper v-neck.

4. Slim Fit Portofino
Worn above with Express jeans and booties.

This is my first time trying the Slim Fit Portofino. (More outfits and details for the Original Fit version here). The fit on this was just okay for me. It's not drastically different than the original fit, but the slimmer fit made it tighter though the bust and restricted arm movement a little more, which I didn't really like. For this particular color (Thornberry) I didn't find the color representation to be totally accurate on the website either. It ended up being too similar to a color I already own, so this one is going back. For reference here are side-by-side photos of the stock image vs. real life, as well as side-by-sides of the Original Fit vs. Slim Fit.

Slim Fit (#1 and #3) vs. Original Fit (#2 and #4) untucked and front-tucked:
Slim Fit Portofino in Thornberry | Original Fit Portofino in Berry | Jeans | Booties

If you've been thinking about purchasing any of these items during the sale I hope that gives you a little more insight! Enjoy the rest of your weekend!


Outfit Recap + Sale Purchases

I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving! I promised I would share the items I purchased from the Express Black Friday sale I'm following through with that in today's post. I'm also doing a very quick outfit recap since the vast majority of items I'm wearing are still 50% off just through noon today. Things are selling out faster than I can keep my links up-to-date with inventory so my apologies in advance if you end up on a dead end page.

Outfit Recap

Jacket: Express | Top: Express | Jeans: Express | Shoes: Amazon | Necklace: Stella & Dot (Gift) | Bag: Amazon

Jacket: Express | Cami: Express (Same Color Cami) | Jeans: Express (Similar) | Necklace: LOFT (Similar) | Bag: Tory Burch | Shoes: Nordstrom

Top: Express | Jeans: Express | Necklace: Amazon | Bag: Amazon | Flats: Amazon | Bracelet: Charmed Stacks

Jacket: Express (Similar, Similar) | Tank: Target | Jeans: Express | Booties: Express (Similar) | Necklace: Express | Bag: Amazon | Ring: Stella & Dot

Front View:

Shop items from these outfits that are currently 50% off :

Express Sale Purchases
The temperatures are dropping a little here so I used this sale to start preparing my closet for winter with some new sweaters. I have a feeling some of these pieces are not going to work out for me due to fit, but I ordered them so I can try them at the sale price.
Express Black Friday 2016 Purchases
Row Two: Black Sweater |  Earrings | Glitter Clutch 

Olive Sweater: Caryl has this sweater and I love it on her, but it looks cropped on the model. I' just have to see it on myself to decide if the length in front works for me or not.

Striped Sweater: Carolina has this one and it looks like a nice, classic piece. The reviews said it ran small so I ordered one size up and am hoping for the best.

Cable Knit Sweater: I've seen this in store and I liked the color and overall look, but I didn't try it on so I'm not sure if the distressing will be so see-through that it needs a cami underneath. So yet another gamble with this piece!

Black V Neck Sweater: This style of sweater was a staple for me when I lived in Seattle, but I stopped wearing them when I moved to San Diego. I'd like to try this with a sequin mini skirt for holiday parties etc. or just as a warmer layer under my jackets in the winter since sometimes I want something warmer than a t-shirt. 

Earrings & Clutch: My own post on Wednesday made me order this clutch! I have a gold version of this and love it so much I decided to get the black version too. The earrings are something I saw in store that look fun and sparkly for date night or holiday parties without being too big or heavy for my tastes.

There's always a chance I'll end up placing a Cyber Monday order after I see what all my friends get from the sale, and I'm also going to be checking out some other retailers when they launch their deals as well so I'll do my best to keep you all up to date. Hope you all had some success with your wishlists as well! 

For my blogger friends, you can still join our Black Friday link-up below for a chance to win a Nordstrom Gift Card! Here are the winner eligibility requirements:
  1. Add your Black Friday themed post (whether it's a Wishlist, Gift Guide, Sale Guide, etc.) to our link-up anytime between Tuesday, November 22 and Friday, November 25.
  2. Include links back to all three link-up hosts: Pinksole, More Pieces of Me, and On the Daily Express within the exact post you are adding to the link up.
See you all next week!

Linking up with:


Top Express Sale Picks Under $20

If you are carefully minding your budget this month but just want one or two fun or useful pieces to add to your wardrobe while the prices are low, this post is for you. Today I'm sharing four of my favorite items that are currently under $20 thanks to the Black Friday sale!

1. The Skimming Tee: Under $10
Jacket: Express (Similar) | Tee: Express | Jeans: Express (Similar) | Short Necklace: Kendra Scott | Long Necklace: Express (also under $20) | Bag: Amazon | Shoes: Express | Watch: Fossil (Similar) |  Ring: Nordstrom | Bracelets: Express (Similar)

Shop the Look:

I currently own this tee in White, Silver Grey, and Wren Grey (which is not grey at all in my opinion). I don't wear it on its own as often as I wear it as a layer under my jackets. It's extremely soft and comfortable, the length is just right to leave untucked (so it's low fuss), and it's just the right balance of fitted/relaxed. Not too tight and not too boxy, either. It's a killer deal under $10 right now!

Here's a front view of all three colors I own with and without jackets:

Outfit One:
Jacket: Express (Similar) | Tee: Express | Jeans: Express (Similar) | Short Necklace: Kendra Scott | Long Necklace: Express (also under $20) | Bag: Amazon | Shoes: Express | Watch: Fossil (Similar) |  Ring: Nordstrom | Bracelets: Express (Similar)

Outfit Two:
Tee: Express | Jeans: Express | Necklace: Stella & Dot (Gift) | Shoes: Amazon | Bag: c/o Fossil

Outfit Three:
Jacket: Nordstrom (Similar) | Tee: Express (Silver Grey) | Jeans: Express | Shoes: Target | Necklace: Amazon | Bag: Amazon

Outfit Four:
Tee: Express (Wren Grey) | Jeans: Express | Shoes: AmazonBag: Tory Burch | Necklace: Stella & Dot (Gift)

2. Plush Jersey London Tee: Under $20
Top: Express | Jeans: Express | Shoes: Sole Society (Similar) | Choker Necklace: Amazon | Druzy Pendant: Kendra Scott | Bracelet: Charmed Stacks | Bag: Amazon

Shop the Look:

The olive version of this top made it to my Top Eight list yesterday but I wanted share the other colors today because they're all great and it's so worth the under $20 price. It's nice and thick (moreso than other pieces from the One Eleven line) and holds its shape really well. To see the front view of this outfit go here.

3. The Choker Tee: Under $18
Tee: Express | Jeans: Nordstrom (Similar) | Shoes: Amazon | Bracelet: Charmed Stacks | Ring: Kendra Scott | Bag: c/o Fossil | Front view of this outfit: here

Shop the Look:

I tend to favor more classic pieces than trends, but I still like to get one or two trendy items each season provided they work easily with everything else in my wardrobe. For this season, my trend of choice has been the choker necklace and this choker tee has been fun to wear. For under $18 it's a great deal. This comes in several other great colors and I'd love to collect them all, but I'm trying to limit myself to just one since I don't think it's a piece that will become a wardrobe staple.
Express Choker Tee
Top Row Colors: HERE
Bottom Row Colors: HERE

4. The Sparkly Clutch: Under $20
Top: Express (Colors Vary) | Necklace: LOFT  (Similar) | Jeans: Express | Bracelet: Stella & Dot | Shoes: DV Safia | Clutch: Express (Current)

Shop the Look:

I bought my Glitter Clutch at Express last year and it's one of those pieces that always draws compliments when I carry it. All I have to do is add some heels, sparkly jewels and this clutch to my everyday outfit basics and they instantly go from day to night. If you don't have a sparkly clutch like this now is a great time to get one for under $20 and put it to use all throughout the holiday season. I don't think my pictures or the stock photo captures how glittery this is in person, but I snapped a photo in store where the lighting really brought out the sparkles:

The wristlets work if you want to carry just the essentials for a night out (phone, credit card, lipstick), otherwise go for the clutch if you don't like to be too restricted on space.
Express Glitter Clutch and wristlet
Top Row Glitter Clutches: Here ($19.95)
Bottom Row Glitter Wristlets: One | Two | Three ($14.95 each)

And that's it for my under $20 favorites! I hope you all have a Happy Thanksgiving tomorrow! Mine will be pretty quiet as we're staying local and don't have any family in town, but hopefully it will be relaxing and enjoyable all the same.

P.S. Bloggers - don't forget to add your Black Friday posts to the Link-Up here throughout the week for your chance to win a Nordstrom Gift Card!

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