Instagram Roundup: What I’ve Been Wearing Lately

I have been so MIA lately…I know. This season of life is so busy for us! Between Hurricane Irma disrupting life for two weeks, a long weekend in New York City, birthdays, Gator Football, PTA-momming, and everything the fall season brings our way, I’m so busy I find myself unable to breathe some days.

But I kind of like it like that. This month I dedicated five days to the girls’ school book fair, working early in the mornings and late into the night to write 75,000 words that week. Every weekend is pre-booked with a trip or an event, I’m spending two days before the month is out volunteering for festivals and fun at the twins’ school, hair appointments, new brakes, errands, Addison’s three dance classes and her advanced acro class, as well as her newfound passion for wanting to be at school 45 minutes early two mornings a week to participate in the running club; basically this month has 22 working days for me and 9 of them have been/will be spent not in my office working (that’s 135,000) words I need to find time to write outside of my normal office hours.

I’m lying. I really love it. I love being involved in the kids’ lives and being there for all the things they love to do. It makes me happy, even if my husband says it gives me crazy eyes from time to time (eye rolls and laughter go here).

But…that does mean the blog has taken a backseat this month. Sorry, y’all, but the kids come first! And that’s why I’m too lazy to come up with anything innovative and amazing for you today other than a not-so-sorry apology for being a little MIA and an Insta-outfit roundup. And a quick promise to do better.

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{Jeans | Top | Wedges |Sunglasses | Handbag }

I call this look my “I wish it was cool enough to get away with wearing this and not sweating, but it’s not,” look. Also – you will see this shirt in about 783793 different colors because I have them all. What can I say? When I find something I love, I get them all. This is why I have four kids.

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( Jeans | Top | Sunglasses | Shoes | Handbag }

Oh look…same jeans, same top, same bag, same glasses. I literally changed the color of the shirt and the shoes and called it a brand-new outfit. I call this ensemble, “Mom Life,” because ain’t nobody got time to get creative when you’re already running late.

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{ Dress | Bag | Boots | Sunglasses }

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{ Leggings | Top – It’s TopShop from Nordstrom, but I cannot find it anywhere anymore!| Shoes (old, but I love these!) |Clutch }

Fun fact: This hotel mirror selfie came a mere 10 hours before we were pulling up to the airport at 4 am to catch a flight to NYC on my birthday and I suddenly remembered I left my bag in the hotel. We missed that flight. But my faux-leather leggings are literally the best thing about cooler weather, and my gold and fuschia Manolo Blaniks are two-years-old, but they never fail to elicit at least a half-dozen compliments when I wear them.

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{ Jeans |Top | Belt (old, but I love this one) | Handbag | Glasses (old but similar ones here) | Shoes }

And I’ve had a few Instagram questions about my front door details in some of my OOTD posts:

Welcome Mat – Personalizationmall.com

Fall Wreath – Wayfair

Front Door Color – Front Door Red (Seriously. I did not make that up. But I cannot remember if it was from Lowes or Home Depot. But it was definitely one of those places).

Prada Marfa Mug – Etsy (just search for it once you’re logged in)

Necklace – I do wear the same necklace all the time, and it’s super old. It’s a Tiffany & Co. necklace my husband gifted me almost 10 years ago when I was pregnant with our first child. When we found out what we were having and chose her name (Addison), he bought the necklace with an “A” charm on it for me (don’t worry – now I say it stands for both Addison and Ava and I have the same charm with a “C” on my bracelet for Carter, Charlotte, and Craig so no one is left out!). It means all the everythings to me, and I only leave it off when I’m working out.

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The Do’s and Don’ts of Handbag Shopping: How to Make Sure Your Splurge Doesn’t Give You Buyer’s Remorse

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Diamonds might be some woman’s best friend, but I prefer handbags. Of course, this really does surprise so many people since I rarely change out my handbag for anything other than date night. I’m a one bag at a time kind of woman, and I have my reasons.

  1. I’m a mom. I need the biggest bag ever to store my stuff and the things that belong to all four of my kids (and my husband’s stuff, though he will deny he asks me to carry anything of his).
  2. I’m a mom. I need every available second of my day for all the things that need to be done, and I don’t even have 30 seconds to change out my bag if I wanted to.
  3. I’m a mom. I need something well-made and efficient.
  4. I’m addicted to my Neverfull – and I don’t wanna carry anything else.
  5. I’m a mom. I need room for my booze (I’m mostly kidding about that one).

I love a good handbag, and I have a lot. I still maintain the LV makes the best bags in the world. I’ve got four of my own, my oldest being almost 14-years-old and still perfection. They’re so well-made, so sturdy, and I can’t even destroy them. But I digress. I’m talking handbags today not to sell you on the fact that Louis Vuitton makes the best bags in the business, but to help you decide on which bag you’re going to splurge.

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I believe in expensive handbags, because they’re the ones that last – and I wanted to share with you what to look for when you’re spending $1,000+ on a handbag so you don’t end up with serious buyer’s remorse.

Is the Cost Per Use Worthwhile?

The first question to ask before you splurge on a bag is cost-related. How much will it cost when you break it down by use? For example, the Louis Vuitton Neverfull GM I carry cost $1,340. I carry it every single day, and I have since Valentine’s Days 2016. 20 months. If you break the cost down by month, it’s cost me $67 per month to carry. Break it down by week for roughly 80 weeks and the cost is around $17 per week thus far. Break it down further by roughly 600 days and you’re looking at a total cost of about $2.24 per use so far. Basically – it makes the cost of this bag seem like nothing.

On the flip side, consider if you carry a bag only two or three times per month. If I bought this bag and carried it two times a month for 20 months, you’re looking at 40 uses. It’s now costing me $33.50 per use. If you’re going to use the bag long enough and often enough to make the cost-per-use reasonable, it’s a good investment.

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Will it still be stylish in a decade, two decades, 50 years?

Never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever buy a handbag that is too trendy as an investment piece. Nothing is a bigger waste than spending $1,000+ on a bag you won’t carry more than a year or so. It must be a bag that’ll be in style the rest of your life. Think classic styles, patterns, and designs from designers such as Prada, Gucci, YSL, Chanel, Louis Vuitton, etc. Steer clear of trends.

Does it give you what you need?

I have four kids and a lot of stuff to carry – my Neverfull is everything I need and more. It’s a perfect diaper bag/handbag. It’s perfect for travel. It’s perfect for everyday use. It gives me what I need, and that’s what makes it a good investment. If you’re splurging on a handbag, be sure it’s one that offers all you need without question.

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Do you love it?

If you don’t love it, don’t buy it. Take the time to go shopping. Try on the bag. Look at it. Compare it to other bags you also love. Pick the one you love the most. The one you can see yourself carrying the rest of your life and passing down to your daughter and granddaughter one day. If you’re only buying it because it’s the ‘It’ bag of the season, you’re going to have buyer’s remorse. Don’t pick the most popular, trendiest bag around. Pick the one that speaks to you and has your heart.

I’m a big believer in investment pieces you can carry for the rest of your life. When it comes to accessories such as handbags, spending some serious money is always a wise investment; but only if you do it right the first time.