J.Crew Factory 50% off Sale!

J.Crew Factory is now offering 50% off, and they just released a bunch of adorable new arrivals. I’ve decided that they’re my favorite factory store, because you can go there to find something for work/internships, something for date night, and something for a shopping day. Not many stores have such broad offerings, and it’s pretty darn convenient just to hit one store. You can see my favorites below. Hurry up before they’re gone!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Delight of the Day 4/15

The Jack Rogers faithful everywhere will simply adore today’s Delight of the Day – the Jack Rogers Charm Necklace, $38. We all love our Navajos, and now we can display our affection in another way – with this adorable necklace available in three different metals. Gold not your color? Don’t worry; they made silver and rose gold. Have too much Tiffany silver already? No problem. Now the only problem is deciding which to order!

Kiel James Patrick New Arrivals

So, I’m super sorry for the lack of posts last week. My grandmother was in the hospital, so I was preoccupied with that. Thanks to everyone who sent their well wishes :)

While I was waiting around for news, I decided to check out Kiel James Patrick’s latest arrivals, and, boy, are they cute.

 The Valerie Pearl Anchor Necklace, $82

 The Chatham Harbor, $148

 The Monogrammed Cape Codder, $168

 The Joey Potter, $40

Delight of the Day 4/4

Today’s Delight of the Day is the Lexington Dress from Lilly Pulitzer, $198. I love how reminiscent of the vintage patterns it is, but with a more modern cut that would be flattering on anyone. If you’d like to see some of my other favorite from Lilly, feel free to check them out here!

Just a friendly reminder to enter my Kidogo Kidogo giveaway! It runs until Sunday, and you could win your very own iPhone case. Who doesn’t love changing up her cases?

Delight of the Day 4/1

I have an announcement today. After today, I will no longer be blogging.

APRIL FOOLS!

I’m so clever, right? Ha!

Anyway, down to business: today’s Delight of the Day is the ever adorable Envelope Clutch in Printed Anchor from J.Crew Factory, $69.50. (Plus, take 30% off with code {JUSTJOKES}!) I’m seriously loving everything from J.Crew’s spring line (you can see some of my other favorites here), but this clutch is priority number one. I’m envisioning carrying it around all summer long, paired with white jeans and a great navy blazer. Perfection, right?

p.s. Don’t forget to enter my Kidogo Kidogo giveaway! The Rafflecopter seems to be working today, so it will be easy peasy!

Kidogo Kidogo Giveaway

 

Up and Away

I’m beyond excited to introduce you to Kidogo Kidogo, whose name means “little by little” in Swahili. This awesome company, started by two sisters, sells iPhone cases, and, for each one they sell, they donate a cell phone to women in Tanzania. (Think Toms shoes, but even more incredible.)

 Flamingo! In their own words, “In Tanzania, only 36% of women own mobile phones, and the number one reason preventing them from ownership is the initial cost of a mobile handset. Mobile phones in Tanzania are prepaid where owners can buy credits at bodegas and other small stores around the county. These phones are also much more to these women then just a way to communicate with family and friends, although they do enjoy this as well.  A mobile phone is a flashlight, a watch, a calculator, a camera and a radio. In Tanzania mobile banking is extremely common, and a phone provides women a way to make secure banking transactions. Mobile phones are also used monitor consumer markets and receive health reminders and updates. Women with mobile phones also report a much higher feeling of personal safety than those without.”

 Little by Little

“At Kidogo Kidogo, we sell iphone cases. But these cases do a lot more than just look good and protect your phone — they are putting life changing mobile technology into the hands of women across Tanzania. You see, when you buy a case, we buy a phone (or phone credits) to give to a woman who could not otherwise afford it. The phones are then distributed to women through established non-profit partners already working in Tanzania. We currently have partnered with FINCA, a global charitable microfinance organization, whose mission is to provide financial services to the world’s lowest-income entrepreneurs so they can create jobs, build assets, and improve their standard of living. We have also partnered with an environmental NGO in Tanzania, Sea Sense. A portion of the proceeds from the sales of the sea turtle case will be distributed to Sea Sense who works closely with coastal communities in Tanzania to conserve and protect endangered marine species.”

Go Fish

Each case is priced at $30 each, and they were designed by an esteemed Tanzanian-based artist, Sarah Markes, and feature some of Tanzania’s most iconic wildlife.  There are five iPhone 5/5s case designs and two iPhone 4/4s case designs!

One Shell of a Case

The amazing ladies over at Kidogo Kidogo are actually giving away one of their adorable cases to one of you lovely readers! All you have to do is fill out the Rafflecopter below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 or click this link: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/c3c21526/

The giveaway ends Monday, April 7 at 12:00 AM. Good luck!

Vineyard Vines – Kentucky Derby 2014

Can’t make it to the Derby ever this year? Fear not. Every year, Vineyard Vines does a collection for the Kentucky Derby, and it’s adorable/makes me feel like I’m there if only in my dreams. This year’s collection is by far my favorite. Here are some of the best looks:

 Churchill Downs Scene Dress, $198

 

Derby Sash Pique Dress $218

  Print Rose Shep Shirt, $125

  Race Day Boat Hat, $80

BluePrintCleanse Part II

 This is the second post in my series about The BluePrintCleanse. To see the first, please click here. In this one, I won’t do an hourly play-by-play, since, by day four, the drinks were routine. Instead, I’ll give a description of each day and how the juices affected me. As always, please feel free to ask me anything!

Day 4

In the wee hours of day four, I’m starting to question if this cleanse was worth it. It’s a great testament to my willpower, but I could have done something that wasn’t half of my rent payment to prove to myself that I have self-control. After juice one, however, this all changes. I’m so glad that I decided to work from home today instead of yesterday, because the juices seriously did their thing. By 4:00, my stomach has never been flatter, and, without sounding cheesy, my body feels clean. This really gives me the boost I need to keep going and not regret spending the money.

Day 5

I open the refrigerator for my first drink and can’t believe I only have two more days. The beginning was definitely a struggle, but it’s flown by. Part of me can’t wait to go to my favorite Greek place next week, but a larger part is kind of panicking about reintroducing solid food into my diet. I’ve read and heard a lot of horror stories about people caving in the middle of the cleanse and getting violently ill, so I wonder what my body is going to do after six days of cleansing and the two days of just veggies before that. Thankfully, I have an early massage to take my mind off things.

After a steaming hot shower to wash off all the toxins, The Boy and I run some errands. I nearly faint twice. My blood sugar is at an all-time low today, and, crazily enough, I feel dehydrated. (Again, I’m drinking 140-150 ounces of liquids each day, so this is essentially impossible.) He stops at Chick-Fil-A on our way home, and I’m ready to bury my face in a Number One meal. I don’t, but I want to.

I took some advice and blended the Cashew Milk with some ice, as it was supposed to mimic a milkshake, but it’s more like a frozen margarita made with Cashew Milk instead of tequila and strawberries. Not. Good. I have to confess that I could only drink half of it. Sorry, BPC!

 Day 6

The last day! As one of my Instagram followers pointed out, there’s light at the end of the refrigerator. I’m feeling extremely empowered today and abide by a strict schedule – 9:00, 11:00, 1:00, 3:00, 5:00, 7:00 with water in between. That’s BPC’s recommended schedule, but real life has gotten in the way, so I’ve had to alternate it a bit. (I don’t think it makes a difference, really – just as long as you leave an hour in between each drink.)

Again, today is a pretty intense cleansing day. I’m down five pounds since Tuesday morning. Of course, as soon as I start eating more than 840 calories a day, I’ll gain it back, but it’s a nice feeling. There are even some abs peeking through, so, if nothing else, it was worth it for this.

As I’m drinking the last drink, it’s all a little bittersweet. While I know that getting your nutrients in juice form is easier on your digestive system in terms of the little work it has to do, it’s also pretty rough having all this liquid pouring through your body. I’m very afraid of reintroducing food. I cut up various veggies for Monday at work (BPC recommends only eating one veggie at a time, so I’ll eat one at 9, one at lunch, and one as an afternoon snack), but I know even that might make me sick.

I’d like to say that I’ll always choose healthy foods from now on, but that’s unrealistic. However, this cleanse really has taught me that I don’t need to feel grossly full in order to have energy, which is what had been going on prior to the cleanse. Do I need more than 840 calories on a normal basis? Yes. But I certainly don’t need a bagel and cookies when I get home from work, shortly thereafter followed by two servings of pasta and chicken for dinner, and something sweet to finish up the evening.   That’s just gluttony, and it’s why my body has been feeling so crummy.

This cleanse has also provided me with zero excuses for not working out. If I could work out nearly every day with so few calories and not much sleep (waking up due to drinking so much), I certainly can’t say I’m too exhausted going forward. (Side note: I was VERY sore after doing circuit training. My guess is that my body wasn’t able to recover as quickly as it normally would without protein and sleep.)

I really do feel better inside and out, and I truly believe I can maintain that feeling by making better food decisions and continuing to work out regularly. It’s all very cyclical in that when you’re working out and eating well, you feel good about your body; when you feel good about your body, you choose to work out more and eat better, and BPC was the shock my body needed to get back to that point. Did it change my life and how I view food? No; I knew these things before but was in a rut from which I couldn’t escape. Should you try it? Only if you’re certain you’ll stick to it; it’s too expensive to give up halfway through. Do I recommend three or six days? Six; I didn’t noticed the changes until days four through six, and I’m so so so glad I chose to extend my cleanse.  Would I do it again? Probably not, but not because I regret it. I think I can take the lessons learned and do own cleanse going forward. Plus, then I can use the money I saved to buy myself a present for being so strong!

I hope that these posts provided you with answers to questions you’ve had. Know that my experience with the cleanse is going to be different than yours, because all of our bodies react in different ways. That being said, please don’t hesitate to ask me any questions; I’d love to help based on my experience.

BluePrintCleanse Part I

 As some of you may know, I’m currently on the BluePrintCleanse. Before I start getting 984375934 comments about how I don’t need to lose weight and how some people feel cleanses are an unhealthy way to lose weight, you should know that I’m not doing it to lose weight. Prior to wintertime, I exercised 4-5 days a week, I ate very well, and I didn’t have any major health concerns. However, after moving in with The Boy in November, I’ve been slacking a little. The kid survives off of Gushers, Poptarts, and Keebler cookies. So, lately, I’ve fallen prey to some pretty unhealthy eating habits, and I’ve been feeling kinda rotten. With springtime coming up, I really want to get out of this rut and start feeling better again. So when I saw the BluePrintCleanse on sale at Gilt, I thought it was the perfect opportunity to restart my healthy lifestyle.

 I know my blog usually focuses on the preppy lifestyle, but I’ve gotten a lot of requests for my opinion of the cleanse, so I thought I’d write a few posts. At the time you’re reading this, I’ll have finished the third of six days. (Although, I should note there were two prep days during which I pretty much ate celery and carrots. Although The Boy did take me out to dinner Saturday. Oops.) Here’s a recap of days one through three.

 Day 1

8:30 – Where in the world is my cleanse? I’m hungry, and lemon water isn’t going to cut it much longer.

9:30 – Woohoo! It’s here. I unpack the juices, snap a few pictures for Instagram (judge me all you want!), and take a whiff of the first bottle. Smells like kale and celery. I take a sip, and hmm..not that bad. It’s certainly not Naked’s Green Machine, but I can get into this. It actually takes me almost 45 minutes to get the first one down, but I did it!

12:30 – Okay, I’m ready for number two. It’s just slightly difference from the first, but, again, it takes me almost an hour to finish. (Side note: you’re supposed to drink water in between each juice, so be warned that you’re ingesting 96 ounces of juice and 60ish ounces of water each day. Do not plan a road trip while you’re doing this!)

2:30 – Kinda over the green juice at this point. The Boy has a bag of Lindor Truffles sitting on the bar. Those would be incredible right now. Ooh and a bagel. I could go for a bagel. Or five. I can just start again tomorrow. No, no I can’t. I’m going to drink this juice, and I’m going to like it. I ended up getting this one down in 15 minutes!

5:30 – Spicy Lemonade. This one is very similar to the Master Cleanse, which I’ve done multiple times. I really liked that they sweetened it with agave instead of maple (as the Master Cleanse traditionally calls for). It really blended well. I’ll probably buy this one separately as opposed to making my own Master Cleanse going forward.

7:00 – The last green juice of the day. I was honestly so full at this point, and I was freeeeeezing. These juices taste much better over ice, and I always drink my water cold, so, after this insane amount of liquid, my insides are practically frozen. Thankfully, The Boy was finally home from work for this one, so he gave me a pep talk while I drank.

8:15 – I was most excited for this juice, because everyone said it helped curb the cravings for sweets. Well, those people are crazy. In fairness, it actually doesn’t taste bad. However, it’s extremely grainy, and I have a huge issue with the grainy texture. It just creeps me out. I drank the whole thing, over lots and lots of ice, but, boy, was I glad when it was done. 5 more of these? Ugh.

10:30 – Bedtime. I find that I actually have a lot of energy. I’m slightly worried I won’t be able to fall asleep, but I do – and fairly quickly. My only issue with the sleep: putting a bunch of liquids in means letting a bunch of liquids out, so I did have to get up two or three times. Not cool.

 Day 2

6:30 – Wake up, drink some hot lemon water, and go about my normal business.

8:00 – I’m hungryyyy, but if I don’t wait until 9:00 for the first one, I’ll never make it through the day.

9:00 – Thank goodness. By now, the green juice tastes pretty good. Yes, I can taste the celery and kale, but I like those veggies, so it’s no big. People at work walk past and ask about it, so I’m feeling a little more empowered than I was this morning. It’s not everyone who can do a six day cleanse, ya know.

12:00 – The second juice has the added ingredient of ginger. Oddly enough, I didn’t notice the flavor yesterday, but, today, it seriously sticks out. I finish this one in about ten minutes, and I’m starving afterwards. Everyone at work is eating around me. The smells of cafeteria pizza, Kashi chicken Florentine, and Chinese food are taking over my cube. I don’t even like those things. (Sorry, Kashi, but you need to add some spices.) I go to fill up my water bottle to stifle the hunger, but someone is reheating some incredible-smelling Italian leftovers. Woe. Is. Me.

3:45 – I somehow resisted the urge to devour all the Hershey kisses sitting in my desk drawer (seriously – why did I leave those in there?) and made it to juice three. This one, followed by about 20 ounces of water, has me seriously full.

4:55 – So much so that I don’t know if I can drink number four, but I plan on going to bed EARLY tonight, so I know I need to drink the last one by 8:30. (You should drink the last one two hours before bed. This allows for proper rest for your digestive system while you’re sleeping. I follow this religiously, whether I’m on a cleanse or not.) It helps that I love, love, love the Spicy Lemonade. Apparently, Atticus does too. He licked the cap and is going nuts for more! He does yoga poses all the time, so I have to laugh thinking of my little new age pup doing yoga and juice cleanses. Ha!

6:15 – One more green juice, and it hits the spot. I decide to look into how many calories are in this cleanse. I swear I had read that there were almost 1,200, but maybe that was for Renovation rather than Excavation. Sure enough, Excavation only has 860 calories. Like I said, I’m rarely hungry, because there’s so much water, but I can definitely tell I’m running on fewer calories by the sheer exhaustion I feel as the night rolls on.

8:30 – Ugh. Not that gritty Cashew Milk again. Please, anything but the Cashew Milk. To my surprise, this one isn’t as grainy as yesterday. Disclaimer: there was a large putty-esque chunk at the bottom of the bottle that did not make it into my cup. I think this contributed to the smoother texture. However, it has me wondering – if it’s congealing like that in the bottle, what’s it doing in my body? Hmmm..

9:30 – I’m reworking a blog post for tomorrow and catching up on some work while no one else is logged on to bug me. After about 20 minutes, my eyelids are drooping, and I finally log off. I fall asleep for a few hours, but am awakened in the middle of the night. Without being graphic, this is when the cleanse kicked in. Kind of inconvenient.

 Day 3

6:30 – My alarm finally goes off, but I’ve been up for over an hour with some weird noises coming from my stomach. After some hot lemon water, my stomach feels a lot better. Now that I’m not focusing on my stomach, it hits me that I have a headache. I need caffeine. I haven’t had it since last Friday, so I don’t think I’m going through withdrawal, but my body definitely associates exhaustion and headaches with caffeine after years of reaching for the Gevalia after a poor night’s sleep. If anyone ever criticizes my will power again, they’re dead to me.

 9:00 – I’ve guzzled down about 32 ounces of water at this point, so I’m not particularly hungry, but I know I need to drink this now, because my next opportunity isn’t until noon. At this point, the green juice seems like a routine. My brain has tricked me into thinking it tastes just as yummy as Naked’s Green Machine (is that banana I hint? no, crazy lady), so I drink it happily while in a meeting. I find that I’m extremely focused in this hour-long meeting, and even in my following two-hour meeting. I occasionally always daze off momentarily in the daily two-hour, but I’m on point today. Strange.

 12:00 – Drink number two. I realize I don’t particularly enjoy the ginger in this one. I like ginger normally. (Years of stomach aches due to IBS meant looking for some natural remedies, which include eating ginger.) Hmm..do they put ginger in here to calm tummies that might be upset with the inundation of nutrients? Those sneaks. I have to admit that the McDonald’s french fries in the cube next to mine smell pretty darn good when I first smell them. However, after I get up to refill my water bottle and return to my desk, the smell of the grease is very reminiscent of having a bad hangover and driving past the rank oil tubs behind McDonald’s. No, thank you. (I can’t be the only one whose boyfriend drags her to McDonald’s for hash browns the morning after. I always abstain, by the way.)

 3:15 – I drink this one when I get home from work. I’m a little over the monotony of the green juice at this point. It’s not bad, just boring. I see an email from BluePrint congratulating me on making it through the cleanse. Slow your roll, y’all. I have three more days of this.

 4:45 – Woohoo! Spicy Lemonade time. This stuff is a God-send.

 6:00 – Another green. I’m so full at this point. I need to do a better job of spacing these out, but my job doesn’t permit me to get up to use the ladies’ room every ten minutes, so I can’t drink too much. Thankfully, I’m home for the next three days. That might make this easier.

 8:30 – One of my awesome Twitter followers gave me the idea to put this and some ice in a blender. I’m trying that tomorrow, because I just can’t get over the texture.

 General Observations

BPC included a small pamphlet with tips. In it, it suggested working out to help sweat out toxins, as well as getting a massage and colonic. While I’m not quite brave enough for a colonic, and no one could book me a massage this last-minute, I did work out every day. I actually have a pair of Hot Pants, too, which I use to stay warm in this frigid weather to get the heart rate pumping a little more while doing circuit training, so I had those on for each workout to boost the sweat. I was worried about working out while on the cleanse, just because I’m prone to getting lightheaded from low blood sugar, so I wasn’t sure the juices would provide enough energy. Honestly, my energy levels during the day (after the initial morning low and before bedtime) were high as could be without ten espressos. I can’t promise it’ll be the same for everyone, but that IS the general concensus I’ve heard from friends.

 At this exact moment, I would not recommend doing this before a big event or spring break. Again, it could be because I have IBS, but my stomach felt bloated all three days due to the amount of liquids going in my body. It’s water weight, so it’ll disappear once everything is back to normal, but I would not want to wear an itsy bitsy teeny weenie bikini this morning (day four). We’ll see how I feel in the aftermath of the entire cleanse. Wish me luck on the next three days!

Lilly Pulitzer + Estee Lauder

 Attention Lilly lovers: I just found out that the amazing partnership between Lilly Pulitzer and Estee Lauder is back! If you buy $35 worth of Estee Lauder products at Macy’s, you’ll receive a free Lilly makeup bag filled with $120 worth of Estee Lauder product. I actually got this the first time it was offered, because I loved the Lilly bag so much, and Estee Lauder products are pretty darn great – sort of a no-brainer, ya know?

 The geniuses at Macy’s are making it super simple by offering two great tools (the ones the incredible ladies behind the counter often use – you’re basically a pro now) to help you identify the best products for your skin: their Estée Lauder Skincare Finder and Estée Lauder Foundation Finder. Personally, I’m a huge fan of their BB Cream, but you really can’t go wrong! Make sure you order soon, though, because this deal is only available until Sunday, March 23!